“Beauty, to me, is about being comfortable in your own skin. That, or a kick-ass red lipstick.” -Gwyneth Paltrow

About Me

I remember my first foray into the beauty world. I was 13, and my mom  took me to the mall to get “skin typed” at the Clinique counter. There I  was, in my awkward, slightly pimply, teenage angst, learning about all  the failings of my face from a woman in a white lab coat. I found out I  had combination skin (gasp!), slightly prone to breakouts (agony!).  Apparently, this was cause for great consternation, judging from the  concern exhibited by my beauty-queen mother and the SA as they discussed  my prescribed skin care regimen in hushed voices. Finally, they laid it  on me: I was to commit to daily scrubbing with a large, half-moon,  yellow bar of soap, followed by “exfoliation” via Clarifying Lotion 2,  capped off with moisturization (must prevent the wrinkles!) with the  ever-ubiquitous Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion. Feeling overwhelmed and slightly numb, I nodded my  agreement, Mom handed over her credit card, and a deal with the devil  was made. 

     And such began my journey into the world of skincare and makeup.

     Since then, I’ve become a fanatic, surpassing even my mother’s  wildest dreams. Not even the craziest, most drunken night in college  could keep me from removing every trace of makeup each night…even when  there was a very real possibility that I might pass out and knock myself  unconscious on the sink while doing so. When I read that the sun was  responsible for 80% of premature aging, I became the only girl on the  quad who insisted on staying ghostly white each Spring, for fear I would  see a wrinkle pop up in my 20′s. I was fascinated with every lotion,  potion, serum, and powder that arrived on the market. I researched every  “miracle” ingredient that came on the scene, and scraped together my  pennies so I could be amongst the first to try them. While my friends  were spending money decorating their first apartments, I was blowing my  paychecks in the cosmetics department. While their idea of  “Happy Hour”  was margaritas after work, mine was a makeover, a pedicure, or a facial  on a Saturday afternoon.

     I even went so far as to become a Counter Manager for several  high-end department store cosmetics lines, which fed my obsession for a  few years. I was on the forefront of the research and got to share my  knowledge with everyone who came within hearing distance. I became a  makeup artist and realized just how much a new look could really affect a  woman’s entire attitude about life. I learned that a new red lipstick  could solve almost any problem.

    Of course, I eventually grew up a little and realized the retail life  was not the life for me. Then I grew up some more and had 3 daughters,  and ended up working in a decidedly UN-glamorous job with the school  district so I could be home with them as much as possible. But I still  have my obsession, and I hope to share it here, as I try new products  and discuss which of them end up in the “keep” box rather than the  trash. And I plan to do it all wearing my favorite red lipstick.

If you have any comments or suggestions for me, please feel free to contact me at lipstickdiva@comcast.net. I'd love to hear from you!

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