I recently bought one of those liquid face masks that, after five minutes, solidifies enough to be peeled off, like wallpaper, in one satisfying go. Ostensibly. I lasted no more than two excruciatingly long minutes before I scrubbed—definitely not peeled—it all off in a hurry. It wasn’t the first time I’ve ended up with a towel covered in wet clumps of expensive product, and it certainly won’t be the last.
I am wildly impatient. It’s shocking that I ended up working as a beauty editor, because most quality skincare and wellness practices take time, effort and most importantly, patience—which I’ve never been and probably never will be blessed with.
This puts me in the unique position of reading about, writing about, and researching tons of practices I never manage to do myself. Things like moisturizing my elbows or attempting to “fix” dark under eye circles. As a Person Who Cares About Beauty, this is my secret shame. Below are seven beauty products and practices that my peers seem to love and that I just can’t get into, no matter how hard try.
I wanted to start with my #1 most shameful beauty editor secret. I find moisturizing my body post-shower to be a mind-numbing prison of boredom. And so I don’t do it. Ever.
My reasoning has always been that I don’t have dry skin, so I don’t get itchy, and the skin on my arms and legs doesn’t seem to be peeling off in strips yet, so I feel okay about it. I do sometimes worry that because I’m so good about taking care of the skin on my face but totally neglect everything else, I’ll wake up one day with supple, hydrated cheeks and a body that looks and feels like a rusted car door.
A few years ago I watched as everyone I follow on Instagram morphed into an anonymous figure behind a sheet mask, claiming that nirvana—otherwise known as good skin—was awaiting them on the other side. But try as a I might, I could never get into sheet masks. It’s not that I don’t believe in their benefits (I know they’re loaded with serums), I just think there are less cold, less gooey alternatives that don’t fall off every time you breathe (like regular moisturizer, for instance). To those who insist sheet masks are relaxing, I have to ask: Have you ever relaxed before?
Nail polish base coats
Does anyone actually use these? I recently heard that many nail polishes are formulated so that you no longer need a base coat, an update that has had zero effect on my life whatsoever.
I’ve always believed eye cream to (largely) be a scam. It often has the same ingredients as a regular moisturizer*, but is simply formulated to be thicker, more expensive, and less plentiful. Although I do admit to finding videos of people applying it with their ring finger extremely relaxing, there’s simply no science that says you need a thicker cream under your eyes, and so I refuse to fork over the money.
*If you use a face cream loaded with actives like AHAs, retinol, or BHAs, maybe don’t use that around your eyes.
In the time it takes to fill up a bathtub, I could have taken three showers. Next.
Call me childish, but I will never be okay with bringing something that looks like that so close to my eyes. Also, it’s 2019 and the mascaras on the market are really good, so I prefer to just skip the medieval torture device altogether.
If I can’t even bring myself to slap some coconut oil on my legs after I shower, dry brushing never stood a chance. In case you’re unfamiliar, it involves running a brush with thick, rough bristles against your skin to exfoliate dead skin cells and increase blood flow. Which sounds nice if you’re into pain. It’s also commonly referred to as a “detoxifying” product that helps to drain lymphatic fluids and flushes “toxins” from the body. Whenever I hear the words “toxins” and “detox” to describe beauty products, my eyes roll into the back of my head and don’t return for several minutes, meaning this routine could never work.
What beauty things will you never get into?
Photo by Allan Grant via Getty Images.