Monthly Archives: July 2016

Review: Peter Thomas Roth

ptr

Here’s what’s up with my product reviews. Mostly, I’m reviewing things I get samples of, or things I’ve gotten in exchange for my points at Sephora. No one is paying me to run this blog, and it’s been hell finding a spa job that meets my needs, so until companies start sending me stuff (which, btw, if anyone knows how to make that happen, get at me, seriously), we’re working with samples. I like doing this is because I know a lot of people are in the same boat, using samples and travel sizes to construct their skincare routine until they find something they like or they’re able to afford larger sizes.

Last year’s birthday gift at Sephora was a Peter Thomas Roth cleanser and mask duo. I avoided using it until recently because they are gel products, and gel cleansers tend to dry me out. Gel products are generally best for those with oily, combo, or normal skin. But lately my skin has been breaking out more than usual, so I read through the ingredients and gave them a try. Here are my “in a nutshell” thoughts. If you’d like a thorough analysis of the ingredients used, that will be below.

Anti-Aging Cleansing Gel (Sephora, $38/8.5 fl oz, same price and size at Ulta): As I suspected, this cleanser did dry me out a bit. HOWEVER! I really like using this cleanser in the same way I’d use a clarifying shampoo; not regularly, but every now and then to get a really thorough clean. It lives up to its claims and I was so pleasantly surprised by it. This cleanser contains glycolic acid (an AHA) and salicylic acid (a BHA), which is a fantastic combo for both anti-aging and acne. Some of the fruit acids may irritate more sensitive skin, so be cautious of that. The ingredient deck is great. I do not think pricey cleansers are necessary since you’re going to wash it right off of your face, but I really like this cleanser as a “treatment cleanser” of sorts, and definitely recommend it. Especially for those struggling with adult breakouts and anti-aging concerns simultaneously. I also recommend this to my gothy, glam, and other heavy makeup wearing readers, since it’s so deeply cleansing.

Cucumber Gel Mask (Sephora, $52/5 fl oz, same price and size at Ulta): Would I buy this at the $52 price tag? I’d hesitate. At the same price as the cleanser? Definitely. It is described as being “refreshing, calming, cooling, moisturizing.” Any gel mask is going to be refreshing. I used it after having a severe allergic reaction to another product, to test the calming claim, and honestly? Straight aloe gel is more calming, but it did calm my skin, to a degree. It does have a cooling effect without the use of menthol (this is a big plus for this mask), and is lightly hydrating, so good for skin types needing some, but not excessive, moisture. The ingredient deck is great. Using it for ten minutes twice per week didn’t give me AMAZING results. I just personally have trouble spending more than $30 on a mask, since it’s meant to be washed off.

Ingredient-by-Ingredient Analysis

Now that you know my basic thoughts, let’s look at the claims made on the bottles and the ingredients to figure out WHY these products are effective or ineffective.

Cleanser

Claims: “Oil-Free anti-wrinkle technology rejuvenates clarifies brightens with glycolic acid salicylic acid and fruit extracts for all skin types.” There is no punctuation on the bottle, do you know hard it was for a grammar nerd like me to type all that out?! Anyway. Let’s look at the back of the bottle now: “Luxurious facial cleansing gel helps produce a beautiful, fresh, youthful-looking complexion. Advanced deep skin renewing action increases cell turnover to help diminish the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and other signs of aging. Detoxifies the pores, dissolves makeup, emulsifies oil, and improves skin texture as it gently sweeps away dead skin cells and impurities that can dull the complexion.” WOW those are some big claims. Almost “miracle in a bottle” type claims.

Ingredients:

  • Water
  • Sodium laureth sulfate: emulsifier, surfactant, less irritating than sodium lauryl sulfate. This is the cleansing agent in this cleanser. According to my ingredient dictionary, it “exhibits a mild to moderate skin irritation index in irritation tests.” This confirms the cleansing claim and the emulsifying claim.
  • Cocamidopropyl Betaine: surfactant derived from a coconut oil salt. This is what gives the product it’s creamy foam. Again, this confirms the cleansing, luxurious, makeup dissolving, and skin texture claims.
  • Coco-Glucoside: very mild cleansing agent derived from coconut oil and fruit sugar. Meets cleansing, luxurious, makeup dissolving, and skin texture claims.
  • Propylene Glycol: Less greasy than glycerin; humectant, solvent, and preservative. It is one of the most common moisture-carrying vehicles used in cosmetic formulations. It can be irritating in high concentrations. Meets cleansing, luxurious, makeup dissolving, and skin texture claims.
  • Salicylic Acid (Beta Hydroxy Acid): anti-inflammatory, exfoliating, anti-microbial, anti-septic, preservative enhancer, and pH adjuster. This is the wonder ingredient that meets almost every claim on the cleanser’s label: it improves the look and feel of skin by dissolving the top layer of skin cells; reduces sebaceous follicle blockage; and it appears to improve wrinkles, roughness, and tone. It may cause redness and irritation in higher concentrations.
  • Glycolic Acid/Arginine (Alpha Hydroxy Acid): reduces excess buildup of dead skin cells which can be associated with acne, dry skin, and wrinkles. It facilitates sloughing of dead skin cells (it’s an exfoliant). Enhances moisture uptake as well as increases the skin’s ability to bind water. This is the other all-star ingredient that substantiates the label’s claims. It’s beneficial for acne-prone skin, diminishing the signs of age spots, anti-aging, hydrating, moisturizing, and skin normalizing, all of which lead to reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Use of this killer ingredient leads to softer, smoother, healthier, and younger looking skin. In high concentrations, it can be irritating.
  • Peach Fruit Extract: abrasive; adds bulk and moisturizing activity. It’s used in products recommended for dry skin. And as we know, dry skin ages faster. So the use of this ingredient can substantiate the anti-aging claims. Plus it smells yummy.
  • White Oak Bark Extract: reduces inflammation and prevents infection. It is slightly tonic, strongly astringent, and antiseptic. I suspect this is what gives the sort of dry and tight effect due to the astringent.
  • Lemon Fruit Extract: anti-bacterial, anti-septic, astringent, and toner. Also used to perfume products. It’s suggested for treating sunburn, acne problems, and oily skin and it contains citric acid as well as vitamins B and C. It can cause irritation and allergic reactions, which is why I included the disclaimer in the beginning of my review.
  • Lime Fruit Extract: perfuming, emollient, soothing, and anti-septic. It’s a source of vitamin C and can cause photosensitivity.
  • Linden Flower Extract: known for helping problem or blemished skin, and is considered to be refreshing and soothing. Anti-septic, skin-clearing, soothing, sedative, circulation-stimulating, hydrating, and astringent. (After researching this ingredient, I’ll definitely be looking to implement more products that utilize it.) It’s used effectively for irritated skin and the relaxation of muscle tension and cold, and to mask odor and condition skin.
  • Grapefruit Fruit Extract: anti-septic and skin-conditioning. Good for oily skin, contains vitamin C and is very acidic. In high concentrations, it is too caustic to be used on the skin; but as it is lower down on the ingredients, it should not be a problem.
  • Citric Acid: astringent and anti-oxidant. Product stabilizer, pH adjuster, and preservative.
  • Citrus Bioflavonoids: I had to go to Google for this one, because there was no information in my ingredients dictionaries. Basically, citrus bioflavonoids are used for their antioxidant properties.
  • Allantoin: healing, calming, and soothing botanical. It’s an excellent temporary anti-irritant, and it stimulates new tissue growth, helping to heal damaged skin. Derived from comfrey root, it’s good for sensitive, irritated, and acneic skin.
  • Methylparaben: non-comedogenic and very low sensitizing preservative, used to combat bacteria and molds.
  • Quaternium-15: this is a somewhat controversial preservative. When used in leave-on preparations, such as moisturizers, serums, etc, it is considered highly sensitizing. However, used in low concentrations of 0.02 to 0.3 percent, it is safe and effective without the risk sensitization. Also, it’s one of the last ingredients in this product, meaning very small amounts of it are used. This should not present a problem.
  • Red #40, Yellow #5, Fragrance: all unnecessary ingredients that lend to the product’s aesthetic and do nothing for your skin. Again, as these are the last ingredients and therefore the most diluted, they should not present a problem.

Mask

Claims: “Extreme detoxifying hydrator. Refreshing cooling moisturizing calming gel helps soothe dry irritated skin with extracts of cucumber papaya pineapple aloe.” And the back label: “This ultra-gentle gel helps soothe, hydrate, and detoxify dry, irritated skin with botanical extracts of cucumber, papaya, chamomile, pineapple, sugar maple, sugarcane, orange, lemon, bilberry, and aloe. For all skin types.” No huge claims here, just soothing, detoxifying hydration. I’m always a little cautious of detox claims, because they never tell you what’s being detoxified. But as far as mask claims go, this is pretty standard.

Ingredients:

  • Water
  • Propylene Glycol (repeat from cleanser): Less greasy than glycerin; humectant, solvent, and preservative. It is one of the most common moisture-carrying vehicles used in cosmetic formulations. It can be irritating in high concentrations.
  • Cucumber Extract: moisture-binding, moisture-regulating, soothing, tightening, anti-itching, refreshing, softening, healing, and anti-inflammatory. Obviously this ingredient is carrying most of the mask’s claims. And given that the mask has cucumber in the name, it’s fantastic that cucumber extract is the third ingredient. Nothing bothers me more than a product being named after an ingredient that is barely even used. It’s excellent for eye treatments and treatments for oily skin, and effective as a tightening agent for tired, stressed, skin. It’s used in sun preparations as a refresher. The best part of cucumber extract is that it contains amino acids and organic acids that are claimed to strengthen the skin’s acid mantle.
  • Papaya Fruit Extract: cleanser for acne-prone skin. It’s a very gentle exfoliant (and one of my personal favorites). It softens the skin and can help smooth the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. This is something you should look for in ALL masks.
  • Pineapple Extract: anti-inflammatory and exfoliant. It can be irritating to the skin.
  • Whole Leaf Aloe Vera: I could gush about aloe for hours. It’s an emollient and a thickener, but has so, so many benefits. It is hydrating, softening, healing, anti-microbial, and anti-inflammatory. Aloe is most recognized for its moisturizing properties because it supplies moisture directly to the skin tissue. It relaxes the skin, which is why it’s so valuable for sensitive, sunburned, and sun-exposed skin. This is another killer ingredient that you should incorporate whenever possible.
  • Bilberry Fruit Extract: bilberry is the cuter name for huckleberry. Astringent, anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, slightly muscle relaxing, and protects against collagen degradation.
  • Sugarcane Extract: I had trouble finding information on this one. It is, essentially, the raw form of glycolic acid.
  • Sugar Maple Extract: natural source of AHA, which is exfoliating.
  • Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Extract: anti-inflammatory and repairer. Bactericidal, anti-itching, soothing, antiseptic, purifying, refreshing, and hypoallergenic, with the ability to neutralize skin irritants. It is non-comedogenic and is excellent for dry skin.
  • Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Oil: another form of chamomile.
  • Lemon Extract (repeat from cleanser): anti-bacterial, anti-septic, astringent, and toner. Also used to perfume products. It’s suggested for treating sunburn, acne problems, and oily skin and it contains citric acid as well as vitamins B and C. It can cause irritation and allergic reactions, which is why I included the disclaimer in the beginning of my review.
  • Orange Extract: perfume, anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, anti-spasmodic, and sedative. It’s good for sensitive, delicate skin.
  • Glycerin: one of my personal favorite ingredients! It is a humectant and a moisturizer, and it improves the spreading quality of products.
  • Sodium Pca: a humectant that is a component of the skin’s natural moisturizing factor. It’s recommended for dry, delicate, and sensitive skins.
  • Allantoin (repeat from cleanser): healing, calming, and soothing botanical. It’s an excellent temporary anti-irritant, and it stimulates new tissue growth, helping to heal damaged skin. Derived from comfrey root, it’s good for sensitive, irritated, and acneic skin.
  • Disodium Edta: a low-concentration preservative.
  • Sodium Polyacrylate: suspending agent, stabilizer, and emulsifier.
  • Triethanolamine: emulsifier and pH adjuster.
  • Carbomer: thickening and suspending agent.
  • Polysorbate 20: solubilizer, emulsifier, viscosity modifier, and stabilizer of essential oils in water.
  • Diazolidinyl Urea: antiseptic, deodorizer, and broad-spectrum preservative against bacteria and fungi.
  • Methylparaben (repeat from cleanser): non-comedogenic and very low sensitizing preservative, used to combat bacteria and molds.
  • Propylparaben: one of the most frequently used preservatives against bacteria and mold. It’s considered to be one of the safest preservatives.
  • Yellow 5 (CI 19140), Blue 1 (CI 42090): product colorant.

I’m really happy with the ingredient decks on these products. Although they both contain several ingredients that may cause irritation, they both also contain ingredients that are used to combat those effects. I saw results with the cleanser after just a few uses, which is rare for me. I definitely recommend the cleanser, and the mask as well if you don’t mind the higher price point.

Have you ever used PTR Skincare? If so, which products did you love? Let me know in the comments below!

Love,

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“Men’s Skincare” Is Bullshit (It’s all just skincare people)

gothicstripper:

rapunzelie:

why is it so hard to convince men to wash their faces …..why do they think skincare is for women…..please, your skin cells are suffocating underneath their own dead brethren and you must exfoliate them….free them

!!!!!!!!!?!

SOURCE: rapunzelie

The day we covered Men’s Skincare in school was the day I remember as The Eternal Cringe. Maybe it was the slightly outdated, pandering textbook entry, maybe it was the concept of gendered skincare, maybe it was the annoyed look on everyone’s faces when I voiced my opinion. I don’t know. But something about it bothered me so damn much that I’m still bothered enough to write a blog post about it, one year later.

textbook

Barf. (Milady Esthetics textbook)

“Men’s Skincare” as a concept is rooted mostly in unnecessary gender separation, in my opinion, and has little scientific foundation. While it’s true that men’s skin tends to be thicker and oilier, I don’t think that warrants a whole different genre in the skincare world. I think it’s just another skin type-thicker and more oily, oily, normal, combo, dry, dehydrated. Skin is skin, no matter who wears it, and we all need to take care of it. It is an organ and deserves to be treated as such. Caring for your skin is a component of hygiene and who the hell doesn’t need to be hygienic?

I think by gendering skincare, we complicate things. We make good skincare harder to attain because instead of shopping by our skin’s needs, we’re shopping by gender. For example, the Nivea For Men moisturizer is a SUPER makeup primer and moisturizer. Nikkie Tutorials discovered it because she forgot her own moisturizer and had to use her boyfriend’s. How many people could be benefiting from this product but will never try it because it’s “for men?” How many women could be saving money by using men’s products? How many men are using the wrong ingredients for their skin because those ingredients are in “women’s skincare” products? How many men are letting their skin suffer because they believe skin care is “for women?”

And that right there is where the “Men’s Skincare Market” came from. In an attempt to get men to care for their skin, they made products “for men.” They added “masculine” scents which do no one’s skin any favors, they put it in different packaging, they attach ridiculous descriptions to their products to make men feel more manly by using their products. My husband’s body wash, for example:

frontlabel

“Fresher than limes & life success.”

backlabel

“Like captaining a schooner. Also buy our deodorant if you want to really be a schooner captain.”

What the actual fuck does any of that even mean? It inspires a certain aesthetic, sure, and it’s funny as hell to read when you’re stuck in the bathroom without your phone. But isn’t the point of product labels to describe the product, how to use it, and what it’s supposed to do for your skin?

I’m using a men’s body wash label as an example because my husband doesn’t use men’s skincare. So, although I have plenty of skincare products to use in comparison, I’ll use my body wash to keep things consistent:

aveenofront

“Nourishing, hydrating, moisturizes.”

aveenoback

Lists some of the ingredients and what they achieve-moisturization, hydration, etc.

It doesn’t make much sense, does it? How does the men’s product help them make an informed decision and buy a product that contains the ingredients needed to address their concern? Instead of trying to make “women’s” skincare more “masculine”, why not make skincare universal and without gender? Because that’s what it is.

Here are the facts on men’s skin needs:

  • Typically have larger sebaceous glands
  • Typically have oilier skin
  • Irritation from shaving the delicate facial skin is a concern
  • Folliculitis (inflammation of the hair follicle) pseudofolliculitis (razor bumps), and ingrown hairs are issues

That’s it. So judging from this list, men simply need products (in general) that are water-based as opposed to oil-based, and should use less irritating ingredients. Have you read a men’s skincare label? So many irritating ingredients are used in high concentrations in the name of being masculine, rugged, etc. Aftershave, for example, has a high concentration of simple alcohol, which we know dries out the skin. Which is the last thing you want to do after shaving. And don’t get me started on all the men’s 2-in-1 products.

Once again it all comes down to ingredients. Do not assume that men’s skincare is what you need because you have men’s skin. Do not assume that men’s skincare shouldn’t be incorporated into your routine because you have women’s skin. Learn what your skin needs and shop for that. And again, the best skincare routine is the one you’ll use.

If you’re a lady, what gems have you found in men’s skincare? If you’re a man, would you be willing to try “women’s” products if it meant better results? Let me know in the comments below!

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Why I’m Cool With Non-Professional Skincare

Tangled-Flynn-Rider-swords

How I feel as a professional when I say I don’t hate non-professional skincare

I’m about to become real unpopular with most other estheticians. I’m going to tell you why I don’t hate drugstore, OTC skincare. I’m going to tell you why I sometimes even recommend it. The majority of skincare professionals-licensed, educated skincare professionals, not MLM reps-will get offended, maybe even a little aggressive and judgmental, when you ask them to suggest a product that you can get at Target, Sephora, etc. They will be quick to tell you (usually condescendingly, in my experience) that any product other than a professional product is a waste of money and will not get you any results. They will be quick to tell you (usually condescendingly, in my experience) that any product other than the professional product they themselves retail, is a waste.

They’re right, to an extent. Professional products exist because the active ingredients are generally (key word there) more highly concentrated than over-the-counter products. Sometimes they have credibility because they have been researched by a reputable lab, or have been developed by a trusted, verified cosmetic chemist. I don’t want anyone reading this to think I’m bashing pro products. They certainly have their place. What I’m bashing is the belief that pro products are the only worthwhile products out there. What I’m against is the idea that every product you use should be professional grade. In the case of things that are just being washed right off your skin, like cleansers and masks, it simply is a waste of money in most cases.

I love OTC products because they are so accessible, and generally unpretentious. I would rather you ask me for an OTC recommendation and book another facial with me because I am willing to work with you and will not pressure you for sales, than to push a pro product on you and make you feel alienated and a bit uncomfortable, potentially never coming to me for another facial. It really comes down to that. I’d rather you actually implement a skincare routine using OTC products than not do anything at all because you aren’t using pro products.

There are some really great OTC products out there, and I am working on discovering those so I can share them with yall. The main thing about ALL products is learning to read ingredient labels. A pro product that contains ineffective ingredients, no matter how highly concentrated, simply will not provide results. Learn which ingredients are beneficial to your concerns, and shop for those. Learn which ingredients will only exacerbate your concerns, and avoid those. This is essential to buying any product, whether it be pro or OTC, skincare or makeup.

Here’s my opinion on when to go pro, and when to go OTC:

Cleanser: go OTC. There is no need to spend more than $15 on a cleanser, in my humble opinion. Since it’s going to be washed right off your face, you don’t need an impressive ingredient deck. Does it contain gently cleansing ingredients? In the case of acne, does it contain something that is going to help clear everything up? Is it the correct consistency (gel for oily to normal skin, lotion/cream for dry skin)? That’s all you need in a cleanser, and you can find all of that in an inexpensive, over-the-counter cleanser.

Toner: either! I’ve tried some wonderful professional toners, I’ve tried some wonderful OTC toners. Pro and OTC toners contain a lot of the same ingredients with similar concentrations. The point of a toner is to balance the pH of your skin and repair your acid mantle, so avoid astringents.

Exfoliators: I’d go pro on these, or at least high-end OTC. The problem with drugstore exfoliants is that they’re generally produced using walnut and apricot shells. These are HORRIBLE for the skin but provide that deeply scrubby feel at a next to nothing cost. I have yet to find an OTC chemical exfoliator, so I can’t speak to those until I’ve done more research. Exfoliation is so crucial to your skin health, trust it to the pros, and use what they provide/recommend.

Moisturizers: either. Again, it comes down to ingredients used as well as texture and consistency. Do your homework and use what’s right for your skin. I have used a professional line for moisturizers, and hated them. I have used moisturizers from Target, Sephora, and other OTC lines, and been blown away with the results.

Sunscreen: OTC, but research, research, research. There is a lot of hoopla about sunscreen causing cancer. I find this hard to believe, but I do believe that sunscreens contain unnecessary, potentially toxic ingredients. That being said, don’t let yourself get swindled into buying pro only sunscreen. Chances are, it’s not any different than a good quality OTC sunscreen; it probably just contains a soothing “chem-free” label that may or may not have much credibility. Sunscreen is crucial, the most important part of any skincare routine, so if a professional product makes you feel more comfortable, please purchase it. The best sunscreen is the one you’ll use daily!

Masks: either. I’ve used a $3 sheet mask with a better ingredient deck than the professional masks I was provided in school. Bentonite clay, which you can buy by the tub at the grocery store for under $10, works better than most professional masks. HOWEVER. There are some truly terrible OTC masks that contain horrifying ingredients, and there are some truly innovative professional masks that astound me.

Treatments: high-end to professional. Serums, targeted creams, etc. need high concentrations to work. You simply won’t find more than short-term, superficial results in a low-end, OTC treatment. This is where you should spend your money, as these products will be on your skin the longest.

disclaimer

Now, something I do completely agree with: only buying professional products from the professional offering them to you. If you are at a Paul Mitchell salon, buy your Paul Mitchell products from them. If you are at an Aveda spa, buy your Aveda products from them. Do not, I repeat, do not buy professional products from Amazon, Target, Walgreens, etc. These products have been watered down or are expired, and that’s how a retailer obtained access to them. You might as well buy well-formulated OTC products if you are not going to purchase pro products from the pros.

Do you prefer OTC skincare lines or professional? Why or why not? What are your favorite products that you repurchase, time and time again? Let me know in the comments below!

gypsycover

(Flynn Rider Image: http://www.magic4walls.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/Tangled-Flynn-Rider-swords.jpg)

I’m Baaaaaaack!

Holy shit it’s been two months since my last post. I honestly did not mean to take such a long break, or even a break at all. I kind of forgot to put a post up one week and then another week and then another and then…yeah. Here we are.

I didn’t miss it at first. And that kind of made me sad. Even though I have less than a handful of followers, and I do not fit in with any blogger group, and I often look at my post ideas and think about what a fraud I am, I do get some sort of enjoyment out of writing these posts. And I couldn’t figure out why I didn’t want to run the blog anymore, or why I wasn’t missing it.

I was watching Mykie (Glam and Gore) and she was talking about getting a following on social media. I mostly had it on for background noise because I was considering abandoning the blogging thing entirely. But then she got to her last point which was “be yourself.” And she didn’t give the generic “be yourself on social media” speech that I keep hearing from blogging and lifestyle coaches/experts. She talked about what that means to her. To her, it means not having a posting schedule. That’s when I perked up and really started listening, because, as anyone knows, that is the first piece of advice anyone will give you. You HAVE to be on a schedule if you want to be successful. You might as well not even get started if you aren’t going to stick to a schedule. That is a big reason why I started to “break up” with the blog, with the idea of being The Punk Rock Esthetician. It doesn’t matter that I can autoschedule my posts. Sometimes I just do not feel like putting things up. I do not have any inspiration whatsoever.

She went on to list other ways she breaks the rules of success, and how it’s ultimately worked for her because she doesn’t feel like she’s doing anything she doesn’t want to. After watching Mykie’s video, I started writing this post. I realized that I only thought I was being my true self when it came to this, and yet, I was still obsessing over having a schedule, I was still pinning countless “rules to blogging success” articles on Pinterest and feeling so inadequate when they were overwhelming and didn’t resonate with me. I was still having a small breakdown each post over finding images and following someone else’s rules for success. And I mean, can you blame me? I’m the type of person who doesn’t want to do something if I’m not going to be successful. So I started to sort out the rules that don’t work for me, and how I’m going to break them:

  • No more scheduled posts. I could really identify with Mykie’s reasons why an editing schedule doesn’t work for her brand. And I can also understand why people suggest it. They use the TV program example: a show won’t be successful if it comes on at a different time on a different day every week. No one will know when to tune in. It makes sense to me, it does. And I tried it. And it doesn’t work for me. I’d rather put up quality articles every now and then, over so-so articles on the same day of the week every week in the name of being successful. And who knows? Maybe I still post every week. Maybe I only post once a month. I’m not going to dictate my creativity and inspiration anymore. I will write when I want to write.
  • No more images in posts when I’m not feeling it. Once again I understand why all the “gurus” suggest inserting an image every two paragraphs or so. But sometimes I just cannot find a visual representation of what I want to say. So, there may be an increase in text-only posts. I’d rather people skip a post because there’s “too much reading” than have shitty images ruining my vision.
  • No more word count limitations. A lot of blogging success articles will suggest limiting your word count. There are various reasons for giving this piece of advice, but usually it’s because they believe people don’t want to read too much. Well…IDGAF, quite honestly. I love writing. I love giving you guys as much information as possible. So, if it’s going to be a long one, I’ll put a summary in the beginning of the post. But I’m not going to edit myself down to shorter posts for the sake of readability. I feel like I’m cheating yall out of information when I do that!
  • Only recommending pro products. This is going to garner SO much hate from the esthetics community. From day one of any esthiology program, you are indoctrinated with the belief that only professional lines will get results. Probably only the professional line they provide will truly work. I’m sorry, that’s bull shit. As a professional, I know that professional products generally have a higher concentration of the “good stuff” and that’s why they (sometimes) work better. I know the benefits of going to see a professional esthetician who has access to stronger grade products than the average consumer. BUT. I am also a consumer. I am a consumer who lives paycheck to paycheck. Not only that, I am a disabled consumer, who is often unable to leave the house for days at a time, and needs to shop online. One day I’ll make a post entirely about pro vs. OTC products, but for now, I’ll say this: I’d rather provide recommendations based on accessibility than elitism. If you’re more likely to follow a skincare routine using products from Sephora or Target than you are to even try with pro products, I am here to give you the best advice possible.

I’m sure as I get back into this, things will continue to change. I’ll identify more rules that don’t work for me. And hey, maybe this will hurt my chances of success. Maybe I’ll never break more than 10 readers, maybe my blog will never be SEO optimized. But I’ll feel better about doing it. A huge thank you to everyone who’s still with me!

XOXO,

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