Curled my Lashes, Bent my No Buy with the Shiseido Eyelash Curler

No Buy

I’ve been on a No Buy for the better part of a year. If you’re a regular, you’re probably tired of hearing about it. The truth is, it is an interesting balance – writing a beauty blog without buying product. If you’re sick of hearing it, sorry. If not, carry on.

My eyelash curler broke recently. I’ve had it for years and, frankly, didn’t treat it very well. I didn’t have a backup so I determined a replacement was warranted. Overall life-choices wise, I try to buy the best version of a tool I reasonably can. Ultimately, I decided that I would go for a cult classic – either Shiseido or Shu Uemera. Both are renown for their effectiveness and longevity.

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committee

Amope Pedi Perfect Wet and Dry

Amope Pedi Perfect Wet and DryAmope Pedi Perfect Wet and Dry

Do you feel like you have more disappointing nail salon memories than relaxing, majestic ones? I know I do! The natural solution, of course, is is to take matters into my own hands – literally. For me, the biggest parts of a pedicure are correcting my eponychium and cuticles and reducing my calluses. Over the years, I’ve used plenty of products: rasps, Ped-Egg-type solutions, those horribly scary Credo blades, pumice stones, Mr. Pumi bars (which are pretty nice for mild cases and daily upkeep). A few years ago, my husband got me a ridiculous powertool shockingly good, albeit occasionally awkward-to-use motorized callus buffer. It is FANTASTIC! (yeah, caps and exclamation points) at removing the bulk of thick, unwanted calluses, but it can leave things uneven in its wake. That’s where the Amope Pedi Perfect Wet and Dry comes in. 

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August 2017 Favorites

August 2017 Favorites
August 2017 Favorites
1. Real Techniques Deluxe Crease Brush (part of a set), $9 / 2. Urban Decay Naked2 Basics, $29 / 3. Silkn ReVit, $80 / 4. Haier 1.0 Cu Ft Washer, $1.99

Details on my August 2017 Favorites after the jump. One is preeeetty mundane, but is a huge quality-of-life enhancement for me…so I’m excited!

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Clarisonic Radiance Brush Head

Clarisonic Radiance Brush Head

Initially

Up until this past winter, I exclusively used the Clarisonic Sensitive Brush Head. As I approached restocking time, the cost-effective four-packs of Sensitive brushes for $81 were sold out everywhere. I never had any intention of trying the other brush heads, but I’m not about to pay $27 each…when I can get 2 for $44 (or, even better, 4 for $81!). I time my purchases of supplies like this so that I can take advantage of a 15% VIB or 20% Platinum Perk discount because I hate paying full retail.

Before

For a while, my Clarisonic had been nearly-benched in favor of my FOREO Luna Mini. I had come to decide that the Clarisonic, paired with the Sensitive brush head, was too much for daily use for me. Instead, I was using the FOREO Luna Mini daily and the Clarisonic primarily for decollete use and occasional face use.

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TPDTY: On Sebaceous Filaments & Why You Don’t Need Pore Strips

This is a post from the Beauty Skeptic archives that has been given a facelift! Content is the same but may have been edited for clarity and flow, as well as some small content updates noted in line.

Pore StripOh look, a pore strip!

Yeah, you’re familiar with them, probably from Biore. Other brands make pore strip products, too, often more expensive for the same (lackluster) result.

But you don’t need them.

Yeah, there are DIY pore strip tutorials online with weird suggestions involving egg whites or Elmer’s Glue. And listen, I can appreciate getting a little mad scientist in my beauty/skincare as much as the next person…

But you don’t need to.

Wash your face, leave it sopping. Dry your hands, open the thing. Slap the pore strip on your nose and smooth it down. Wait until it feels ridiculous, then rip it off.

But you don’t need that.

Here’s the thing – what many of us bought those things or played mad scientist for was because we believed we had a ton of god-awful blackheads on and around our nose, right? Oh god, we have to fix it. We’d peel away the papier-mâché pore strip and marvel in disgust over what we just ripped out of our faces with this pore strip. Right? Don’t lie, if you’ve used this, you have. You’re elated for a day or two because your skin looks a little better…and then things return to normal – and you strip again.

A waste, indeed, of time and money for such fleeting results.

But here’s the thing – in so many cases (I wish I could quote you a percentage) those are not blackheads. They are sebaceous filaments – they occur naturally on everyone, ever, and are not blemishes…and they cannot be, “removed,” not even by a pore strip. Yes, they aren’t the cutest thing in the world, and yes, that is irritating. Proper skincare, however, can make them less obvious.

The Routine

Your skincare routine should consist of (at minimum), daily cleansing, exfoliating as often as your skin wants/needs it (some people like a daily gentle exfoliant, some of us like to break out the big guns 2-3 times per week), and moisturizing. You can get more detailed than this if you wish (I like to!) but it isn’t a dire necessity. (Bonus points if you use a face brush like an Olay Pro-X or Clarisonic!)

In terms of cleansers, I like something basic and simple. (2017) CeraVe Foaming (2014) Cetaphil Gentle is my favorite. As far as exfoliants go…in terms of what is best for your skin, a chemical exfoliant is technically best and I have (2017) this AHA gel from Alpha Skin (formerly Alpha Hydrox) (2014) this one from Alpha Hydrox .

That said, I also commit “skincare sins,” and indulge in physical ones (theoretically the gritty nature of these can cause tiny cuts in your skin. I haven’t had problems, personally, but I get it – especially with the St Ives, it can be a bit much if you overdo the pressure) such as this classic from St Ives and my long-time favorite from Burt’s Bees 2017 Update: The only physical exfoliation my face sees these days comes from my Clarisonic or Luna Mini.

Moisturizers are very personalized depending on your needs but I am currently happiest with (2017) Mountain Rose Herbs Argan Oil (2014) Josie Maran 100% Pure Argan Oil Light. Those things help me keep my skin healthy and looking well-cared-for.

The Bottom Line

Stop wasting your money on pore strip products, your time on playing face-goop-alchemy, and just get back to basics. They’re fun, but they are a gimmick – and a costly one, at that. Chances are if you don’t have other acne issues, you don’t have a nose rife with blackheads…you, like most people, just have some sebaceous filaments which are normal and healthy. Not gross, just kind of odd looking when you actually notice them.