Welcome // Why I’m Trying Beauty

Since I finally decided to do something with my beauty routine that involves more than just maybe exfoliating my face every so often, and using something more than just a basic lip color, I’ve realized I have no idea where to start. I didn’t even know brands were out there.

It started several months ago when my older sister had to stop at a department store that apparently had a “cargo palette” on sale. I had no idea what she was talking about. Nor did I have any idea that Cargo was a different quality than the cheap clearance eyeshadows. I looked at some body wash instead. Obviously I was (and still am) overwhelmed. The extent of my personal makeup collection? BareMinerals loose powder that was gifted to me in high school, cheap eyeshadow “palettes” marketed towards the 10-year-old, and some Great Lash mascara that I have had for probably longer than the BareMinerals. Probably expired, too. When did I ever use this? Well, I might use the BareMinerals on very special dates, but other than that, most things sat in a cosmetics bag on a shelf, only touched when I moved.

The reason I avoiding makeup might resonate with some people. I had 24 hours in a day, and I didn’t understand why I should spend my time on makeup. I could take that extra hour in a lab. I could study. I could go to a bike ride. I could sleep! Oh, I could sleep. Why would I invest in something to change my appearance, something I had to do every single day? Was my normal appearance not good enough that it had to be “enhanced” somehow? Or was something to awful about me that I had to cover it up?

Sure, some people used makeup as a hobby or even a career, but I was a student, and I had plenty of hobbies- exercise, baking, sewing, piano…

Then something else happened: my long-term polish subscription started sending out makeup. Of all things I didn’t need, makeup seemed to be high up on the list. I enjoyed nail polish- especially black, sparkly black, shiny black, and, when I was feeling adventurous, silver! But I was a bit upset that I wasn’t getting the nail polish anymore. I ended up skipping most of the boxes… until I forgot about the subscription all together and ended up with a few boxes, mostly containing makeup. Suddenly I had eyeliner and blush and an eyeshadow “duo”… I even had lip crayons??  I didn’t even know what it was until I opened it and put it on.

I started to use some of it- after all, I had it. It was already paid for. I couldn’t exactly return it, so naturally the only thing to do was to use it.

And once I started using it, I became interested in it. That’s natural, right? I wanted to know how to use my eyeshadow effectively. I wanted to learn what brushes were for what. I realized I should get a foundation that didn’t dry out my already dry skin. But when I started to look online for products, I became so overwhelmed.

The truth is, I have no idea what I’m actually doing. I’m not one of those people who has any “Holy Grail” products. I don’t have a favorite brand. I didn’t even know what Tarte was until a week ago. I’m just learning.

Part of learning is going to be spending some $$ on some items myself.  I’ve picked up some brushes, some sponges, foundation, primer, and even a contouring palette I’ve yet to use. Another part of learning? Exposing myself via beauty boxes. I’ve subscribed now to four of them: Juelp Maven, Ipsy, Birchbox, and Allure Beauty. Will I subscribe to some more? Probably. Will I cancel any of my subscriptions? Oh, almost definitely. But I’m going to be having some fun trying this whole “beauty” thing.

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