*Spoiler Alerts Ahead* I found it. Read with caution.
Spoiler alert. I found it.
You can take my word for it and just go buy it now, or read on. Cause girls – hear me out on this one. I hate it.
I honestly hate skincare. Hunting, routines, makeup, tutorials, brands, skin types… I just wanted to be done. Or at least… did.
I guess I should clarify. It’s not that I despise makeup itself – it’s just that I’m getting sick of it being an expectation. Boys don’t know the difference – we can shapeshift however we want. Ladies, if men learn that’s not our actual cheekbone or nose shape, we’re extinct.
I’ll be real, I’ll be honest – I’m not Daisy Ridley, I’m not Chrissy Teagan, or Gwyneth Paltrow – I can’t bareface like they can. At least, I don’t like people seeing me bareface anyway – and I still apologize to my boyfriend whenever he sees me without my ‘face on’ (I know, I know – I’m working on it. I can only read so many Brene Brown books so fast). I wear makeup to feel good, not to impress – but it’s just gotten a little tiresome. Right?
I was bad.
Like, really bad. Let me go back a touch and talk previous skincare. I sucked. I literally bought skincare products and face routines, masks, cleansers, and makeup based on the design. I’m not even joking, “hmm… I like yellow, I’ll buy it.” And I was always so shocked when my breakouts were erratic and annoying, or when I could watch the lines around my eyes, and forehead, and neck look thicker, bolder, and saggier.
So like everyone else I know, I turned to WikiHow, and it was actually really useless. In all reality after a couple months of research I landed on a couple things, tips I’d always heard, but never really taken seriously. I ate less chocolate (and less sugar in general). I upped my Omega’s and drank more water, and then I started very carefully researching my makeup.
I started being a little better with my cleansing, toning, and moisturizing routine. I ditched the all-in-one foundations and started being selective and a little bit of a prude with when and how much makeup I used. And when all of this was said and done – at the zenith of research and work… I could still see visible lines. I could still see wrinkles. I still could see the visible effects of sun damage. I could still see that awkward, uneven skin tone.
Raise your hand if you’ve had REALLY amazing skin days. Like, “GIRL, YOU ARE FEELING YOURSELF” skin days. Keep your hand raised since I already know that those days disappear in front of you as quickly and randomly as they came up. I feel that. We all felt that.
And on my good days, the products I was using honestly didn’t help. As a testimonial of things I have and haven’t found – Oat-Based Moisturizers (the all natural crap) seemed to clog my pores more than they minimized their appearance. “All Natural” products seemed to oversaturate and oil up my skin, and I still couldn’t pronounce half the ingredients on that list. “Dermatologist Recommended” products were too expensive – I’m sorry, I’m not spending $60 on a 2 ounce bottle of cleanser. I’m not.
On board? I’m honestly pleased and impressed you’ve followed me this far down the rabbit hole as is – but since we’re here, let’s fast forward a bit. Zoom into the year, 2017 (remember when we could like, gather, and be friends? All the way back in 2017? April was a tough year, but we made it) I’m at a house party my friend is throwing. It had been about 3 years since I had resigned by skincare-scapade, I was decently okay in my own skin, and I felt like I wasn’t going to get arrested for Public Indecency if I went bareface to a friends house.
It was genuinely a good time, good food (I had since upped my chocolate intake again, don’t worry, I know you were all asking), good friends, fun games. I hadn’t smiled or laughed like that in a long time (you know how we judge ourselves based on the things no one else judges us for? Ya same). But I looked around this room full of women, I loved and respected – and couldn’t help but wonder what their secret sauce was? What’s the secret they’re hiding from me? So against all better judgment, I actually asked!
“So what’s your deal?”
I learned later that there was a MUCH better way to initiate this conversation.
“What do you mean,” my friend asked. What followed was a conversation of humility, gratitude, and acceptance.
We had the whole discussion of, “it’s not about how you look, it’s about how you FEEL” b.s… you know? The premise of, “it’s not about the number,” but it’s kind of about the number. I had been getting really good about self-acceptance, self-love, the whole kit and caboodle. It’s not that I don’t love myself, or that I’m not confident – but it wasn’t just sometimes that my skin damage or scarring would pull me back down into self-doubt, it was almost always. Even on the good days.
You can still love yourself and doubt your skin. And that’s where I was stuck. I explained to all of them, ALL of the research I’d done. Chemicals, ingredients, “anti-aging” products, day creams, night creams, care products, prevention products, COCONUT OILS! Oh My God the coconut oils! I almost started crying. I realized I was so exhausted.
“Grace, take it easy on yourself” came the consoling affirmations. “You’re beautiful, you’re worth it!” Of COURSE I am, that’s not the point! I just wanted my skin to cooperate and join the movement.
“I do have something,”
My friend consoled. Great! I just poured my soul out to this woman and I was about to be sold into an MLM. I was ready to be pitched salaries, work ethics, potentials, yadda yadda, I didn’t have 2 hours to kill in Starbucks right now.
But she didn’t sell me anything. She handed me a little box.
“What’s the catch?” I drilled.
“No catch…” she said, “I’ve just been there.” Okay now I was crying. And of course since she was a “distributor” she had a little pamphlet full of info, resources – I felt like I was leaving an AA meeting for skin, and I already had a support system and a sponsor. Just the gesture was enough to turn me around.
“They took all the guesswork out for me,” she continued. “They’re scientifically backed. Here’s some info on their clinical study. Here’s their ‘Think Dirty’ Score. Use it, don’t use it. Read it. Just know that I’ve been there and I feel that.”
Not dermatologist recommended, not “our best product yet,” nothing grand, nothing inflated – just simple, easy, backed by science.
I went home and studied before I put it on my face (I’m just that kind of person). I could ACTUALLY pronounce half of these ingredients
“TrueScience Beauty System. Nrf2 Enhanced Skincare,” sounded salesly to me. “…A revolutionary (and patent-protected†) Beauty System that uses Nrf2 Activation and ingredients. Meet the skin care regimen scientifically formulated with Nrf2 technology to create healthier looking and more radiant skin.”
- Milk Thistle Fruit Extract (I could read that)
- Brahmi Leaf Extract (didn’t know what it was but I could at least pronounce it)
- Green Tea Leaf Extract (I actually know what that is)
- Turmeric Root Extract (I know it’s got antioxidants which are good… right?)
If not for nothing else – I pronounce more than a majority of what was in it. Win.
Then the clinical study portion. “As part of an eight week clinical study, participants were asked to complete a self-assessment survey based on their use of the TrueScience products. Individual results may vary” Okay, okay.
- 87% had younger looking skin.
- 88% experienced brighter and more luminous skin.
- 94% of participants’ skin felt smoother.
- 95% felt their skin was more moisturized and hydrated.
I was sold. These weren’t dermatologists, these weren’t 9 of the 10 dentists recommending an overpriced toothpaste (but also, what’s that last dentist doing? Why does he always hate the product… just that ONE guy?), these were ordinary men and women like me, with ordinary skin issues, and ordinary skin cares… like me.
The Four Beauty Products I Always Knew I Needed
Their “Beauty System” was broken into 4 products, adeptly labeled as, “1, 2, 3,” and “4.”
- The TrueScience Facial Cleanser (makes sense)
- The TrueScience Perfecting Lotion (it’s more like a toner, but you get it)
- The TrueScience Eye Serum (This was already gonna be my favorite, I could tell)
- The TrueScience Anti-Aging Cream (if that doesn’t sound appealing, I don’t know what will)
This was about the simplest routine I’ve found. Four products that I could do in about 2-3 minutes, that packed the punch of some 10 step equivalents I’d found (they also have a hair care line… a healthy, clean shampoo, conditioner, and scalp serum if I remember correctly, but I haven’t gotten there yet – tune in next time).
The Next Month DID NOT Disappoint
Remember the spoiler alert? This was it. I found it.
The next 4 weeks (about 28 days… I gave it the label suggested time) returned VISIBLY TRACKABLE RESULTS. Let me repeat that. I. Saw. Results. And not anecdotally. I literally saw results.
Was it perfect? No. Was it the Holy Grail of Beauty that I’d found across my Skincare Journey? Totally! I felt like Indiana Jones choosing my routine (goblet… take your pick) “wisely.” They weren’t distinct, my skin was smoother, my pores were smaller, my skin actually felt healthy – not just maintained. It felt good. It felt light.
I watched the depth and appearance of my wrinkles start to fade away. I watched the visible bags under my eyes start to lose that nasty, nasty purple tone. I watched the visible signs of aging start to slowly moisturize themselves away. Dark spots didn’t worry me anymore. They didn’t just feel like expensive skin care products, they felt like clean skin products, healthy skin care products.
They’re cruelty free products, free of parabens, SLS, SLES, Microplastics, and have a Think Dirty score of only 2! If you don’t know Think Dirty, read about them HERE. This was the first step I took many years ago in trying to figure out what skincare was right for me.
Girls. Ladies. Listen, I can’t guarantee that these products will fix all your problems (they made my skin GLOW, but I have a lot of “self” to work on still) – but they certainly help you look at yourself in a new light. Clean skin, and new face, a bare face is just one of those things that I personally love, that makes me feel like kickboxing the world in its teeth.
You have nothing to lose in just trying. Any stage, any point, any person – just try.
My journey is far from over. But my glow certainly makes the unknown a little brighter.