Wait . . . forget everything I just said

Thursday, May 24, 2018


I try ladies, I really do.

But I love pretty things, girly things, pink things . . . and beautiful packaging.

In my last post I shared how I was decluttering my makeup routine. I was doing so well until I tuned into You-Tube. Those makeup tutorials!! And then went to Nordstrom with my daughter for something and passed the beauty counter.

Sigh.

I have reduced the amount of makeup I use. You'll notice most of the above are skin care products or cleansers. But I may as well face it. I'll never be a minimalist in this area.

*****

I give you the lazy woman's method for winding up a skein of yarn.


It works.


Progress on the sweater. It is just about doing me in. I don't think I'm cut out for these kinds of projects.


In happy news, look at what my son, who just moved to Des Moines, sent me for Mother's Day.


*****

More on my decluttered makeup routine

Monday, May 7, 2018

In my last post I talked about decluttering my makeup and beauty routine.

A recent visit to a tea room in Des Moines. I had the lavender sencha tea, in front. Honestly, with the lavender, it felt like I was drinking my bath water!
I tell you what, this new freedom has come in handy as we have recently made trips to visit each of our sons, one in North Carolina and the other in Iowa. Both live in apartments with one small bathroom. There are no mirrors in the bedroom.

Having a simple and quick routine made getting ready easy and fast. I didn't need to pack as much stuff, spend as much time in the bathroom, or try to set up a makeup mirror anywhere.

I was ready quickly and easily and wasn't holding anybody up.

Less is more is sounding more and more appealing. From 30 items to less than 10! (See previous post for my lists.) Only three or four makeup items, including foundation, blush, and lipstick. I'm still thinking about whether or not I can go without mascara. It feels so good to go without it. I can rub my eyes if I want to and I don't have all the trouble of getting it off every night.

The library at the capitol building in Des Moines. Notice the spiral staircase in the back. This place was gorgeous!
I did visit Sephora and the Nordstrom beauty counters a week or so ago with my daughter, and I can't deny I'm like a kid in a candy store at these places. So much fun. I love pretty things in pretty packaging.

But I'm going to focus on good skin care and a few well-chosen essentials. I think about my grandma who had beautiful skin all her life. I'm sure all she used was soap and water. When she was getting dressed up maybe a little lipstick, powder, and a spritz of cologne. That's it. 

One thing that surprises me is that I feel cleaner. Not so much goop on I guess just feels better.

Or perhaps it is the fresh air and sunshine that we're finally enjoying. That feels super-good, too.

Decluttering my beauty routine

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Hey blog friends, I'm still here. (I think I said that in my last post.) This winter has not found me much in blogland, and I am woefully behind on visiting.

It's April 17 and snowing here. We keep a fire going every night. We're almost done with our eight cords of wood. I will be wearing my boots and mittens with my winter coat today. Sigh.

I've taken a little break from decluttering my house, but will start up again in a few days as my husband is ready to tackle the basement and garage, areas that I can't really do without his help.

In the meantime, I've been decluttering and simplifying my beauty routine.

The statistics vary, but on average, women use about 16 beauty products a day. (I discovered after counting that I use lots more than that.) The Environmental Working Group says women put over 168 different chemicals on our skin every day (see article here). We spend more than $8 a day on beauty and skin care products (see article here)!!

These are compelling reasons to cut down on what I use, but the main reason is that I was getting overwhelmed by all the stuff crowding my drawers and counters. The other reason is that I am basically lazy. Do I really want to be tied to such an intensive beauty routine? (And I actually thought mine was simple, especially after watching beauty You-Tubers sharing their routines.)

Here is a list of all the products I was using. And yes, most of them every day, even when just going to the grocery store.

Hair

1. Shampoo
2. Conditioner
3. Styling gel
4. Hairspray

Body

5. Body lotion
6. Heel cream
7. Perfume

Face

8. Cleanser
9. Toner
10. Moisturizer
11. Eye cream
12. Primer
13. Foundation (includes sunscreen)
14. Concealer
15. Blush
16. Eyebrow pencil
17. Eyeshadow
18. Eyeliner
19. Mascara
20. Lip balm
21. Lip liner
22. Lipstick
23. Lip gloss

Teeth and Nails

24. Toothpaste
25. Floss
26. Nail ridge filler
27. Nail base
28. Nail polish
29. Nail topcoat
30. Nail polish remover

I'm sure I'm forgetting something. (Eye makeup remover!) And of course, I don't have just one of each of these. Multiple bottles of nail polish and perfume, eyeshadow palettes, lipsticks, and lipliners.

And then there's the tools and miscellaneous:

Hairdryer, round brush, comb, flat brush, curling iron, eyelash curler, toothbrush, tweezers, false eyelashes and glue, stick-on fingernails, nail files, etc.

You'll notice a few things missing on the list. I gave up deodorant a couple years ago. (I just don't smell, even after exercising. And yes, I've asked close family members to confirm that.) And razors and shaving cream. I never had much hair on my legs and after getting them waxed a few times, there's really nothing there. Every couple months I might notice a stray hair and I just pluck it out with tweezers. (Okay, that was probably more than you wanted to know.) I also don't use mouthwash. Never liked it, and I figure if I floss every day, I'm okay.

Now, I do like to look nice, and I do have fun with makeup and all the girly stuff. And just because I'm getting older doesn't mean I want to give up. But this is crazy, right?

I have a nice big dressing table area with nine drawers just packed with beauty care products, and more overflowing into my closet area. It was time to get serious and do a complete overhaul. I pulled everything out, and started weeding.

The first thing that I got rid of was old and expired items. A pretty eyeshadow palette I paid good money for? Sorry, that was several years ago. Out it goes. And anyway, do I really want to wear eyeshadow anymore? Remember that old video? "Ain't nobody got time for that!"

I started thinking about what was important to me, what wasn't, what was healthy. I realized a number of products can be multi-taskers, like a cream blush stick can be used as a lipstick too.

And okay, these were fun. But really? Fake, fake, fake. I'm done with that.


I returned these nails and several boxes of false eyelashes (unopened) without a receipt and got a $65 gift card back from CVS. Yay! Those false eyelashes were just too much work. I really don't have to compete with the lady news anchors.

I got ruthless. Do I really need hairpins, scrunchies, hair claws? It's unlikely my hair will ever be long again. Out they went. Do I need those hot rollers, flat iron, two sizes of curling irons? Heat can turn silver hair yellow. I don't want that! (I did keep one curling iron, just in case. The rest of the stuff got donated.)

How many bottles of lotions and creams do I need? One multi-purpose item is enough.

I kept going, turning to some articles online about more natural beauty to keep me motivated. And over the course of a few weeks, I've made some radical changes.

So what does my routine look like now?

Hair

1. Shampoo
2. Conditioner
3. Styling gel
4. Hairspray

Body

5. Body lotion
6. Heel cream
7. Perfume

Face

8. Cleanser
9. Toner
10. Moisturizer
11. Eye cream
12. Primer
13. Foundation (includes sunscreen)
14. Concealer
15. Blush
16. Eyebrow pencil
17. Eyeshadow
18. Eyeliner
19. Mascara
20. Lip balm
21. Lip liner
22. Lipstick
23. Lip gloss

Teeth and Nails

24. Toothpaste
25. Floss
26. Nail ridge filler
27. Nail base
28. Nail polish
29. Nail topcoat
30. Nail polish remover

Simple and lovely.

So, this is what's left:

1. Shampoo
2. Body lotion (fractionated coconut oil)
3. Heel cream
4. Face cleanser
5. Face oil
6. Foundation
7. Blush and lipstick combo
(8. Mascara)*
9. Toothpaste
10. Floss
(11. Nail ridge filler)*
(12. Polish remover)*

How did I go from 30 products to 12? (or 9, as I don't use the items with asterisks every day).

My hair is short and its natural silver color. I get it trimmed every four weeks. (My best beauty tip is get a good haircut that suits you and doesn't fight with your hair's natural tendency -- like fine, curly, etc., so you don't have to spend so much time or products fighting with it). I've always hated spraying hairspray. It sticks all over everything. Hair gel makes my hair feel dirty. And do I really need conditioner? On a day when I wasn't going anywhere, I just used shampoo and skipped the conditioner, hair gel, and hairspray. I just blew it dry using my round brush. And guess what? It looked virtually the same as when I use all the products.

Next, the perfume. I love perfume. I've always worn it every day. But I know more and more people are sensitive to it. Maybe I would be doing everybody a favor if I stopped using it. (I have to say, though, that I still have a couple bottles of my favorites, Angel and Coco by Chanel, for a special occasion.)

I think I'll do another post on my makeup routine, as that's a big one. But I am trying to focus on healthy skin, rather than covering everything up.

I would love to have beautiful bare nails, but I have such a problem with ridges and splitting. I have done gel nails, but . . . the money! The time! The UV lights! The ridge filler I have looks like a pretty coat of natural polish so I'll use that to keep my nails looking nice. If I keep them short that prevents the worst of the splitting and tearing.

I've discovered too that you can use the same product for many different things. I have a bottle of fractionated coconut oil (meaning that it stays a liquid) that I use when I get out of the shower. I use it all over, including on my face, as an all-purpose moisturizer. My cream blush stick can be used as lipstick. A little extra foundation can be used for concealer.

I have to say I still have one eyeshadow palette, one eyeliner, an eyebrow pencil, and some perfume and lipgloss. They're neatly stashed in a drawer in case I go into withdrawal!!! or want to do a little extra for a night out.

I've totally emptied out two drawers, and the remaining drawers are not even half full. Feels good.

What's weird, too, is that I feel cleaner. And a little more bien dans ma peau, as they say

Next post I'll describe how I cut down on my makeup routine.

What about you all? Are you a beauty product lover, or have you gone simple and natural? What is one thing you can't live without?


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