It’s true I was 13 and more concerned about my skin than any other part of my body or self-image, yes I’m very short too, petite but that didn’t bother me not as much as a clear complexion. I still don’t know what’s good for my skin, kind of do… But, now with the big 33 looming, Omg! My skin concerns are changing, I’m looking in the mirror seeing if I can see wrinkles. My skin concerns have shifted as I’ve grown older. Let me take you back, way back to 1993!
Secondary school, bad enough as it is, I had the added pleasure of being called Pizza face, yep! Thanks to the volcanic like eruptions on my face! The dreaded acne! So, I guess this is where it started… I bought everything Clearasil that didn’t work, then I bought all the Clean & Clear products. Argghhhh! That wasn’t much better. It took me a while to realise that these products were more damaging than beneficial! They were literally burning my skin, drying it out! I was making my naturally oily skin more dry, itchy and red. Where what it needed was some real TLC and in hindsight maybe just to be left alone. That’s when I switched to PH 5.5. I used this for some time and it seemed to calm it down a bit or get my skin back to not red and dry, you’ve got to understand that these were the days where lunch money was saved for a cheeky visit to Boots or Superdrug. I never wore make up, I washed my face morning and night! Why couldn’t I have skin like one of the girls in Smash hits or Just 17. But, I knew I’d leave school soon enough and that would be it! Right!
Wrong! It didn’t get too much worse but it didn’t get better, it did just look like small bits of Pepperoni on both cheeks, with red jalapenos on my forehead! I’d be pizza face forever! But when I was 18 I was allowed to wear foundation! Hello Rimmel, 17 and on a lucky day with lots of saving with Birthday money Bourjois, we’ll leave the foundations for another day. Finally I could cover it up, my mask! It definitely helped! My confidence grew and I started to feel ok in myself, I also gave myself that gentle reminder, it could be worse!
I even went to the dermatologist, but that didn’t help me, my skin was being burnt and dried out and ripped apart, with topical solutions and I didn’t like taking tablets, but with the feel good feeling that foundation bought, I knew I’d be fine. It finally came, another milestone, hitting the big league, as we all like to think – Uni! Bye Bye! Bullies! Hello new me! You know what else Uni brings, a student loan! Free cash! Plus people that don’t care as much, as everyone’s a little scared. That was it the real beginnings to my skin care regime. Hello 3 step Clinique! I got the soap, the toner, the dramatically different moisturiser! It’s more expensive so it’ll work right! Everything will go away! Wrong! Still had the acne, even with the anti-blemish serum, but I stuck to it! Until I discovered Elemis a change would be good. I could work with rose and lavender stuff, then there was Dermologica and I used this for a while, the daily microfoliant is brilliant, as is the active moist, I even got my face mapped and got a facial really cool stuff. I think somewhere along those lines more years passed… At a guess I’m saying 10! About the time I realised J 17 probably used Photoshop and seeing Cameron Diaz with acne made me feel better, these people had a team of experts to make them look good. I didn’t keep a skin diary, not a bad idea though to see what works and what doesn’t… With years came the qualifications, came the better jobs. When I started Clinique I saw a Crème del a Mer counter, I knew that was the big one! The ultimate cream prize, I’d never get there! The girl looked at me with her perfect skin and hair, probably thinking move along, we don’t want your kind here… Reading about it, the astronaut that invented it and especially when all the famous celebs use it, it’s got to be good!
Years of using Dermologica have moved on to Lancome, my auntie raved about it, then Clarins, then back to Lancome, then Neals Yard and No 7 Protect and Perfect. I have to say the Neals Yard Yarrow Comfrey was good, a great make up base too, as was the rose facial wash! So much so that I went through a few tubs. Then the great job came as did Decleor, Aveda and Eve Lom, moving back home let me experiment more with my beauty regime, I’d had enough of acne scaring and was desperate to clear up the scars of my tortured youth. I really was that committed by using a boiling hot muslin cloth, then cold… Man this was a pain! You know when you’re tired from work and it’s make-up off! Bed! I tried so hard to stop buying make-up wipes for the lazy days, sometimes I’d use the wipes, cleanser, then there was the facial wash or foam, toner, moisturiser! I was good, I used the morning and night creams and sometimes face spritzer. You tend to stick to what’s important to you and this was to me.
My acne today has more or less cleared I have the odd scar, reminder I guess I like to call them my war wounds, only to be seen when the make-up’s off, a reminder of the bullying days… Pizza face was going to be no more. The lead up to my wedding day someone said try the microdermabrasion facials called by Crystal Clear, I wanted my skin to look flawless in pic’s, not too photo-shopped. My beautician also advised that I use a facial wash at night and moisturiser. In the morning I wash my face with water only and then moisturise, so I’m not stripping out my natural oils too much, stopping my skin in over working itself to produce more oils, resulting in acne and or more spots! This was great advice. It took me until I was mid 20’s to drink more water too, despite what every mag in the world tells you to do and bit of advice I read.
Today I’m happy-ish with my regime, I use the Bobbi brown cleansing oil, they’ve bought out a new soothing cleansing oil which I’ll try soon and report back on. The cleansing oil is fab it really gets rid of all your make up, I’m talking waterproof mascara, eyeliner, foundation, blush the works without stripping out your lashes or leaving your face looking like a lobster. The Bobbi Brown face base moisturiser, I love everything about this from the smell, texture, the weight on my face, it helps calm my skin and is such a fantastic base for make-up, meaning no primer. Then there’s the night cream, that’s why I said Happy-ish I’m still not sure…
32 meant I reached my personal goal of getting the crème del a crème of creams, the prize yes we are talking the one and only crème del a mer… Disappointed! Yes! Very much so, it’s like Nivea or Pond’s in fancy packaging, for me anyway. To be honest I might as well put Sudocreme on my face! That’s what it feels like, I thought all my acne worries, scars were gone forever! Gutted to say the least!
Now approaching 33 and a mum, I’m comfortable in myself to nip to the shops without the make-up, friends say they don’t even notice the scars, what it truly reminds me of is the silly bullies at school and how to begin with it knocked my confidence, but then made me into a stronger person and learn not to care. Now, it’s for myself and not others.
» Beauty » Once upon a cream, a long...