I’ve had thoughts like this come and go in the past. A little nudge in my brain saying that this is fucked up but then it passes. But recently, I’ve been thinking about it a lot more and I’m angry.
This is a rant. This is not a journalistic piece. If you want to hit me with facts, stats and your own experiences that contradict mine then by all means go for it. But this is my rant about skin care.
I’ve never understood skin care, I’ve never massively understood beauty for that matter. I get by doing what I see as the bare minimum. I tend to go into Boots and buy whatever is on offer and if I like it then I’ll keep buying that. I’ve never cared to find out what’s new, what’s popular or what will really benefit me. I take my makeup off with wipes, I cleanse with micellar water (because I gave into that trend and I’m not proud) and I moisturise. But I keep seeing adverts, blog posts, videos that are telling me I’m doing something wrong and I need to buy a million different serums.
Firstly, what the fuck is a serum?
Secondly, here’s my theory (this is not original by any means but basically I am fully on board with this theory): skin care is bullshit. There’s like 6 steps you have to do morning and night each with a different product that costs a fortune. Cleansing, scrubbing, exfoliating, masks, hot cloths, serums, creams, toners – what are all these things and what do they do? And why does every blog post on the internet tell me it’s all “essential”?!
In Western society it’s very much the norm if you’re a woman to wear makeup, we think women’s faces without any makeup on look weird because we’re not used to seeing them. We’re sold all these beauty products to put on our skin so we can be pretty but then those products damage our skin because we wear them all the time. But don’t worry because we’re also being sold a million other products to remove makeup, protect you from makeup and basically sort out all the skin problems that makeup caused. It’s a vicious cycle and a multi-billion pound industry that thrives on insecurities. As much as I wish I could not give a fuck, any time I’m doing something where my face is going to be seen on the internet or I’m going to a work meeting or a social event I put on makeup.
Granted, I have been relatively blessed with my skin. I’ve never had severe acne but I do get lots of spots, redness and dryness. But if your skin is genuinely causing you grief, go to the doctors and ask to be referred to a dermatologist.
Recently, after coming out of hospital my skin completely changed. I was getting massive patches of red dry skin on my chin that I never got before and covering up with makeup was hopeless because as it dried it crumbled off and looked gross. This could have happened for any one or a combination of these reasons:
- side effect of all the drugs I was on
- surgery and huge bodily changes messing with my skin
- wearing makeup again after not wearing anything for a month
I was freaking out because I didn’t know anything about skin care and I didn’t know how to get my skin back to “normal”. My friend Lucy who loves her skin care pointed desperate me in the direction of some products. I went to Boots and I HAVE NEVER SPENT SO MUCH MONEY ON SKIN CARE IN MY LIFE. I literally bought a new cleanser and moisturiser. Sweet baby Jesus. This industry is ROBBING us.
Obviously, I’m not going to waste this stuff so I am using it. I’ve also stopped using wipes to remove makeup (apparently I’ve been doing it wrong for years but no-one told me) and I’ve also reduced the amount of time I have makeup on my face significantly. I was incredibly ill, but I did have great skin when I was in hospital.
So basically, it’s all bullshit. I’m angry about it because it’s stealing our time, energy, money and confidence. Will I buy into skin care trends again in the future? Yes, probably. Because I’m a flawed human being and easily manipulated by advertising.
But here’s my skin care advice (which I am also going to try and follow):
- wear makeup as little as possible & remove it before you go to bed
- drink lots of water
- go outside
- wash your face
- wear sunscreen
This rant turned out longer than I expected. If you made it to the end I just want to say I’m not judging people who enjoy skin care and have a whole routine that works for them. You do you. And you can tell me “I told you so” when I’m old and have horrendously wrinkly skin.
BUT WHAT’S WRONG WITH HAVING WRINKLES WHEN YOU’RE OLD?! Nothing!
Okay rant is actually over now. Thanks for reading.