that skin(care) thing.

By now, you get that I like when things are low key and simple, right? Low maintenance rocks my quiet world. I watched a YouTube video today about skincare products and was reminded of just that: when it comes to skincare and beauty regimens, you can imagine how utterly unfussy I am. If it takes longer than 5-10 minutes to do any of it, just no. Give me my Mac Studio Fix and my Ruby Woo. Give me my Neutrogena face scrub, a moisturizer, and let’s be done with it. Words like toner and serum might as well rhyme with binomial and integer: they mean nothing to me. (Big ups to all my Math side eye people–uninterested and confused, one fraction at a time.) The word regimen itself makes me tired.

But a girl gets older and the acne from 10th grade wants its home back, right on my forehead. Or a girl gets her face waxed and the pores become hotels who always have a vacancy. Or weird blemishes pop up and have me wondering what happened to all those superhero African juices that, post-puberty, combated whatever pimple tried to disturb the peace. And when This Square Peg realizes that her status quo must change…she reluctantly realizes that she must change it.

My current “regimen” for skincare:

  1. Wake up.
  2. Consider calling out sick. 
  3. Wonder if a murderer or serial killer is also waking up at the same time as you, being that it’s 5 something in the morning and that hour is reserved for killers.
  4. Trudge to the loo.
  5. Pull out your Neutrogena Oil-free Acne Wash Pink Grapefruit Foaming Scrub and apply a dab to your brand new Vanity Planet facial brush. (You’ve used your hands to wash your face for, oh, 23 years, up until a month ago. But you saw a YouTube video and the wallet was close by and there was a discount, so…) Start cleaning. 
  6. Finish, wipe face.
  7. Apply light moisturizer. Store brand or Equate.
  8. Crawl back into bed. Kidding. Maybe.

That’s all, folks. No face masks, serums, toners, brighteners, prayers to the good skin gods. But the blemishes keep coming. Not every day, but they pop up here and there. Might be the stress from all the changes I’ve gone through these past few months. Might be the reactions to said stress, which typically involve carbs and liquids that aren’t water. I’ve long known that skincare has a lot to do with diet and nutrition and not necessarily just superhero African juices. Anyway, I’ve used Neutrogena for years, and decidedly the acne combating brands, since, as stated above, pimples were my main issue since age 15. The clusters have long gone, but one likes to decorate the center of my head every now and then. But perhaps it’s time to find something different, a new product.

Your mission, if you choose to accept it (and you will, because you love me):

  1. Tell me what skincare products work for you. 
  2. Do you sometimes battle a blemish here and there? Acne?
  3. If you understand what toner is and its point, please: share with the class. Convince me. Remember that I’m still doubtful on whether fractions mean anything in real life. (Says the woman who can’t figure out the difference between 1/2 and 1/3.)
  4. Do you have a–gulp–skincare regimen? If so, please share that with the class in the comments.

All for research purposes. My forehead thanks you. 

p.s.: I’ve recently discovered Melanglow, an awesome place to get beauty and skin advice and recommendations for us brown girls. So yay for that. Check it out. 


9 Replies to “that skin(care) thing.”

  1. Great post!
    Like you, I keep it very very simple!!! My skin doesn’t like tea tree or any of the acne fighting products… They tend to have to opposite effect for me! The best thing for my face is cetaphil! I use the wash in the morning and put the lotion on after. Not even the face moisturizer, just their regular lotion. Before leaving the states I was introduced to bareMinerals Oil Obsessed Total cleansing oil and I used that with their True Oasis oil-free replenishing gel cream. That combination made my skin very happy! Because I’m out of it, I like to do an occasional oil rinse with olive oil
    Oh and YES I tend to get breakouts on my right cheek… ๐Ÿ™„… They tend to go away after a few days

    1. Thanks, dear Sara! Another simple skincare girl like me. ๐Ÿ˜ Thanks for the product suggestions. Cetaphil is one I’ve been wanting to try and I’ve liked bareMinerals prods in the past, as well. Thanks for commenting, lady! ๐Ÿ˜˜

      1. FUNNY. I was reading your 1/29/2020 post and I thought WOW she has a great routine.. I need to get my life together! My skin is totally and utterly out of control right now. I made sure to โ€œstop for a momentโ€ to read this post and I could totally identify with THIS Shirley! I went to get some advice in the comments and lo and behold! my own advice from nearly 4 years ago! I actually just bought cetaphil last week after trying everything under the sun and still looking like a triple chocolate chip cookie with walnuts ๐Ÿ˜ฉ might be time to look into some serums and toners too ๐Ÿ˜

      2. Girl itโ€™s a journey! I definitely had to get my life together and tell myself to stop and be serious. LOL. Not a chocolate chip cookie. Lol. I believe in you. Those toners have been giving me liiiife. And Iโ€™m trying a new serum tonight so Iโ€™ll be updating. Youโ€™ll find what works for you! ๐Ÿ˜Šโ™ฅ๏ธ

  2. Great post! We LOVE the CeraVe Skin Renewing Cleanser! It’s gentle but helps with breakouts/blackheads. We also highly recommend using the Thayer’s Witch Hazel toner. It’s alcohol free so it won’t dry out your skin and it’s all natural. We find that using it helps other products soak into the skin and it helps clean up makeup that maybe the cleanser missed. Hope this helps!
    xx, Britta & Carli from

    1. Thank you so much for reading and recommending! This is awesome. I definitely need something gentle for my sensitive skin, as well, and all natural is even better. Thanks again! ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š

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