Confessions of a Beauty Junkie

Sunday, January 25, 2009


The last time I went to purchase some of my Remergent products (see previous post about their DNA Retaliator Serum), I heard a nasty rumor that Estee Lauder had bought the brand. Much gnashing of teeth and rending of garments resulted on the suspicion that the gargantuan brand would no doubt water down (and crap up) the product line. To add insult to injury, I pictured my beloved DNA Retaliator Serum being sold at half the potency for twice the price next to cleansers that smell like old ladies and powder that breaks me out like nobody's business. I called the day spa where I had habitually bought my Remergent stuff this weekend to see if they're still carrying the brand and, dammit all to mother-grabbing hell, they aren't. I of course whipped myself into a skincare panic and scoured the web for hours in search of my favorite anti-aging shit. After two Diet Cokes' worth of searching, I stumbled upon and scored. They even have their potent day moisturizer with SPF 30 for 15% off the normal price. (I bought two bottles of the DNA serum, which should last me a few months, and they gave me a shitload of free gifts-- lip treatment, body moisturizer, makeup case (!!!), etc.) I thought I'd pass this along to any of you who have decided to give the brand a whirl. I'm still bitter, but at least I can snap up what will probably be the last of this great line of skincare before it goes by the wayside. It's things like this that make me practice yoga and drink wine, often in disproportionate amounts.

P.S.-- Two posts in ONE DAY. Lap it up, bitches!

The Column Entry (Maybe)

So here's what I came up with for the magazine column (thanks to Maggie Turner for the idea). It's kinda weak compared to my blog posts, but I think VIP Williamson County magazine would at least initially frown on a column peppered with cuss words and rantings. (That can come later.) I'm hoping to hear from the editor today or tomorrow; in the meantime, let me know what you think!

S.O.S. (Save Our Skin!)

If you’re like me, you’ve become a little more familiar with the bitter cold than you’d like this winter. More than once in the past few weeks, I’ve almost had my breath taken away upon stepping outside in the morning. We all know the little tips to making it through the winter: pile on the extra blankets and layers, bring the plants (and pets!) inside, start the car a few minutes early. But what about protecting our skin? Winter can be brutal on our precious skin, and dry indoor heat, hot showers, and the like can only make matters worse. What’s a girl (or guy) to do? Read on for a few suggestions on how to protect your skin and be ready for warmer weather (which, in my opinion, can’t come soon enough!).

As I’ve mentioned, prolonged hot showers zap precious moisture from already-parched skin during the winter months. As difficult as this may be, it’s time to get used to warm—not hot—showers, and keep them as short as possible. Ditch your heavily-fragranced shower gel for a gentle oil or cream to preserve precious moisture on the skin, and keep your moisturizer in the shower to slather on while skin is still damp. I really like Eucerin’s Dry Skin Therapy Calming Body Wash Daily Shower Oil (long name, good product) for cleansing—you can find it for around $7.50. The smell isn’t great, but it does a good job of keeping skin from drying out in the shower. Try it in your bath water—I didn’t even need moisturizer afterwards!

Up the moisturizer ante in cold weather by going for a body serum or a thick, luxurious cream (one may be too greasy in the warmer months). A good affordable option is Keri’s Renewal Serum for Dry Skin. It’s hard to believe that a clear gel would offer moisturizing benefits (clear gels usually contain drying ingredients), but this one really does a great job at keeping rough, dry skin at bay. The use of polyhydroxy acids work to gently exfoliate as well, which works to prevent future dryness. It will cost you around ten dollars. A couple more options are the Replenishing Body Moisturizer from Aveda ($23) and Aromafloria’s Body Butter ($30). The Aromafloria moisturizer is almost solid, and comes in a variety of lovely, never-overpowering scents. Try the Kiwi Coconut—divine! One of my favorite indulgent moisturizers is the Sugar-Acai Age Delay Body Cream by Fresh. At sixty-five bucks, it’s hardly a bargain, but it’s thick without being greasy, imparts a subtle scent, and promises to improve firmness and tone in just four weeks—who doesn’t need that? Don’t neglect your hands and feet: Neutrogena and Aveda make great products for applying before bedtime and throughout the day. Dry, rough cuticles and lips will love Rodial’s Glam Balm ($95). Don’t let the price scare you—a tiny bit goes a very long way toward alleviating dry skin (seriously, a tube of this stuff should last you at least six months). When it’s time to turn in, give the space heater a rest and opt for a humidifier to add moisture to the air and—you guessed it—your skin.

So we have it figured out… almost. It’s essential to include exfoliation in your wintertime skincare routine to rid yourself of rough, flaky patches that can accumulate (take a look at your knees and elbows). I typically look for scrubs that have finer-grained particles and aren’t so oily that your shower becomes an OSHA fall hazard. My all-time fave is the Hot Salt Scrub by Bliss. Thirty-six dollars will score you a big ol’ tub of this awesome pre-shower, eucalyptus-scented, powerhouse scrub. It may feel weird scrubbing dry skin if you’re used to an in-shower product, but the sea-salt formula dissolves on contact with water, so it’s a must. Additionally, the scrub heats up when you rub it onto your skin, which may prevent you from the afore-mentioned, now-forbidden hot shower (you’ll be plenty warm after your scrubdown). Still not convinced? The sea salts are suspended in a viscous gel, meaning no greasy residue, the scent opens up the sinuses, and it’s a fantastic precursor to your self-tanning regime during warmer weather. Genius!

Now that you’re soft, smooth, and downright touchable, grab your sweetie for a Valentine’s Day snuggle. (It’s a great alternative to that evil space heater!) Make these small changes now, and you’ll sail through winter nastiness into the bare-legs/ exposed-arms season. Have a great February!

Buying Guide

Eucerin, Keri, and Neutrogena: Local drugstores
Aveda: Origina, Unruli, and Jon Alan Salons in Franklin, Aveda store in the Mall at Green Hills
Aromafloria: Blue River Canyon Day Spa, Brentwood
Fresh and Bliss: The Cosmetic Market, Cool Springs
Rodial: Woo Cosmetics, Green Hills

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Help Wanted!

My cute friend Shelly dropped a proverbial bomb in my lap over the weekend and I need your help. See, she is the editor of an also-cute social magazine that chronicles the goings and doings of folks who hunker down in the suburb of Nashville that I call home. She's currently without a beauty/ lifestyle columnist, and asked if I'd churn something out for the mag. Fun? Yes. Flattering? Abso-freaking-lutely. Do I have any ideas? Well, of course not. Yes, I get it-- you could cut the irony here with a knife (or I guess you could bake it in my shiny new flat-top stove, if you prefer). I am perfectly happy writing for hours on end about mascara and other generally-trivial shit, and then putting it out there for anyone who's nice enough to stop by my blog. But ask me to pen a few paragraphs for all of Williamson County to see, and I'm paralyzed.

What the hell do I write about?

This obviously brings me to the title of this post. No beauty advice today (get your head out of the (shiny new) oven, I'll post something this week)-- I need suggestions, ponderings, insistent badgering, whatever. Shelly mentioned something off-hand about needing a column IN A WEEK, but I'm going to follow up with her on that, rest assured. So while I wring my hands (after slapping on hand cream to increase the wringing speed), please feel free to tell me what to do. Don't get too comfortable, I'll be back to being the Boss of You once I figure this out. Thanks in advance, hussies!