Growing Up, Investing in Skincare

12:00 PM

I've never been particularly fond of my skin. Looking back now I curse my younger years, I didn't know how good I had it then. During high school I was infinitely blessed. Rarely wearing foundation I would dab a bit of concealer on the random spot that would appear once in a blue moon, layer on plenty of black eyeliner, swipe on some lip gloss and I was good to go. It was the early/mid 2000s... scene kids were all the rage and I was desperately trying to be one of them.... very unsuccessfully. 

Now that I'm older my skin has been simply is a nightmare to work with. Despite all my "beauty and good skin start from within"  reading (looking at you Eat Pretty & The French Beauty Solution) I'm a woman of instant gratification. And while I would start with good intentions I soon would fall back into old habits of wearing make up to bed, not investing in a good skincare regimen/products, and buying cheap or bad makeup. I found myself playing into exactly what Mathilde Thomas of The French Beauty Solution described as the major difference between French and American women's approach to beauty. French women focus on skincare, knowing that you need to have a strong base. Whereas American women tend to buy make up or "miracle products", looking for quick fixes to cover up any skin flaws they may have.

I decided recently to kick these bad habits to the curb. I wanted to invest in good skincare serums along with other lotions and potions but skincare is EXPENSIVE. And I'm terrified of spending $$$$ on something that either A. Won't work or B. Makes things worse. I had been eyeing one of Sunday Riley's oils for years - specifically Juno and Luna. But simply could not justify the high price tag even if it meant flawless skin for the rest of my life.

Instead I turned to The Ordinary. When playing catch up on the far too many blogs I follow I came across this post by Suzie Bonaldi of Hello October. It peaked my interest right away as the products were extremely affordable and bonus points for them being vegan and cruelty free. Featuring the same ingredients found in much more pricier brands I was slightly skeptical if it was legitimate. However, per DECIEM, The Ordinary is able to keep costs so low because the don't mark up their products to recoup loses on marketing, advertising, and packaging. What you get is a simple, minimal, almost clinical look in their range of products which I actually like.

The products I bought the Latic Acid 5% + HA2%, Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%, 100% Organic Cold-Pressed Moroccan Argan Oil, and High-Spreadability Fluid Primer. At least once a year I forget how drugstore Salicylic Acid products do no favors to my skin except breaking me out even more. In a bit of a panic I trashed everything. Since using the Latic Acid and the Niacinamide in combination with Burt Bee's Herbal Blemish Stick (a lifesaver) with more stubborn spots my skin is starting to feel and look much better.

All this work was to streamline my beauty regimen in the morning and to feel more comfortable in my skin. After months of teetering back and forth between giving my up safety blanket of full coverage foundation and transitioning to a lighter foundation I took the plunge and bought Glossier's Perfecting Skin Tint. At last I felt like a real human. I could see my real skin, hints of freckles on my nose, and yes even a bit of a blemish but I didn't feel insecure. I received dozens of complements from strangers on how I looked "radiant" Don't get me wrong, I still love make up, and I'm sure will buy plenty more of it to play with in the future. But I'm happy knowing that I can feel good about myself without it. Or at least without as much of it. 

I absolutely plan on giving more of The Ordinary's products a go. I'm eyeing the Ascobyl Glucoside Solution 12%, Alpha Lipoic Acid 5%, and Alpha Arbutin 2%+HA for my next purchase. Their most expensive product is $17.80 meaning they should accommodate everyone's budget and if it doesn't work out for you, you won't be kicking yourself later if you have to toss it. If you're having skin woes I strongly encourage you to not only perhaps consider giving Glossier, The Ordinary, and my new favorite Burt Bee's Herbal Blemish Stick a try, but also to check out those two books I mentioned above! Game changers.


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