Happy New Year! I hope 2022 is treating you well so far. I’ve never been much into resolutions, but I am trying to constantly improve and live better and more intentionally. I want everything in my life to serve a positive purpose – even the things that I buy. So, a few months ago, I started making a list of things I used to purchase on a regular basis but no longer buy. There wasn’t anything necessarily wrong with any of them, but I was able to replace them with smarter purchases that made more sense for me. Some of them were money saving moves and some were just changes due to personal preference. The full list spans a few different categories – beauty, makeup, personal hygiene, entertainment, household, etc – so I’ll be sharing them (in no particular order) as a short series along with what I’ve replaced them with and why.
Here is part one!
#1 – LIP SCRUB
Now, I don’t know why, but lip scrub never really worked well for me. The one I used the most was the e.l.f. Lip Exfoliator in Brown Sugar. It was nice, but I found it to just be ok at best. It didn’t exfoliate the way I expected it to, and I found it a hassle to keep the product itself clean so that I wasn’t adding extra bacteria or irritants to my lips when I would next exfoliate.
What I do now is use warm water and a clean cotton round with gentle pressure. As simple at that sounds, it keeps my lips smooth, there is no cleanup, and nothing that I need to repurchase since I use reusable cotton rounds.
#2 – SHEET MASKS
I used to LOVE using sheet masks because I love indulging in a good self care moment – and good skincare. At one point, I was using sheet masks at least once or twice every week, and I was repurchasing them in bulk. In 2021 though, I started using more traditional masks that you would simply rinse off after the treatment and noticed a dramatic difference in the overall health and appearance of my skin over time. That’s not surprising since that’s really the way it goes. A sheet masks gives you more immediate but temporary results while a traditional mask works over time. Sometimes, you’ll see immediate results with those as well, but that’s not the intent. I really liked the long-term results I had with traditional masks, so I started using them exclusively. My favorite of the moment is the Teami Blends Green Tea Blend Detox Mask.
#3 – CHAPSTICK/LIP BALM
This one really goes along with the first two and for the same reason. My lips became very sensitive when I got into my early 20’s. I’m not sure what caused it, but it limited what I could use as far as lip balm because my lips would become extremely irritated if I used certain things. They would swell, blister, and feel very painful for a few days. For that reason, I no longer buy popular lip products – Chapstick, Blistex, Carmex, Burt’s Bees, EOS – and I don’t use any of the hydrating lip treatments anymore. I really should record a video or dedicate one blog post to the experience I had last year with Lanolips – by far the worst reaction I’ve ever had. I tried it because it was advertised as all natural, but I ended up being badly burned. It’s taken about five months to fully recover.
What I use now are only a few things: Vaseline, Aquaphor, and Palmer’s Cocoa Butter. I have no reactions to these products, so I keep them on rotation. I focus on hydrating from the inside out rather than necessarily using a hydrating product for my lips since the products that agree with me are mainly skin protectants rather than hydrators. So, I also try to drink at least 60 ounces of water a day.
#4 – MICELLAR WATER
For years, I used micellar water both to remove makeup and to give my skin a gentle cleanse in the mornings. It worked well for both, though it did take some effort to use it as a makeup remover, especially for stubborn mascara. The caveat here is that I still use micellar water for one specific reason, makeup ‘cleanup’ – not makeup removal. I still like to use it with a Q-tip to clean up any mascara that may have gotten onto my eyelid during application.
For makeup removal, I now use the Clinique Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm and a clean baby wash cloth with warm water. (I prefer to use baby wash cloths because they’re gentler and softer on my skin.) This cleansing balm melts the makeup nicely and is proving to be a great first step in my evening skincare routine (double-cleansing) even on days where I’m not wearing makeup.
For my morning cleansing, since I do a good job cleansing and hydrating my skin in the evenings, I simply use a cotton round and warm water in the mornings before applying my toner.
#5 – MAKEUP REMOVER WIPES
See #4 above. Since it was sometimes difficult for me to get stubborn mascara off with just micellar water at the end of the day, I would sometimes reach for makeup remover wipes to really get everything off. They did work well, but they generated a lot of waste, and I was rubbing and scrubbing my skin a lot more than should have in order to get it clean which can also cause premature wrinkles. The Clinique cleansing balm is my makeup remover of choice at the moment.
I have a lot more to talk about in this series in later blog posts, so I hope you come back for part two.
What are some things that you no longer buy?
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