I started the Instagram account @abeautyblob to connect with others who feel the way I do about beauty products and regimens. My beauty care experience doesn’t come from a posh or luxurious place. I didn’t get into skin care because of a suddenly-noticed wrinkle on my face or because I earned so much money to spend on myself (although these are good reasons and I encourage your interest in vanity no matter how late in the game). In fact, I wish that’s why I became a beauty addict. And like most addicts, I fantasized about leaving it all to go live in the wild with just fresh spring water and the warmth of sunshine as my skincare routine.
But I’m a city girl. I’ve grown accustomed to and dependent on the modern technology and comforts that only first-world living can provide.
My obsession began at a young age, based mostly on my innate girlishness and uncomfortable and unsightly eczema. It started out small–at the age of 8, it was just a couple of tubes of lip gloss and chapstick. As the hormones kicked in, my collection and the need to add to and maintain it grew exponentially.
What really pushed me into the skincare deep end was the emergence on my face of the teenager’s version of hell: acne. Although it was on the faces of many of my peers, it seemed to me that mine was the worst. In some ways, it was because I perceived it to be. That, and eczema I suffered with since infancy, got me into unhealthy perfectionist habits when it came to “fixing” my skin. Later on, I would find out the real terms for these behaviors (BRFD, BDD, excoriation, and dermatillomania). Nor was I the only one afflicted with similar disorders. I saw it with my friends and family, each one exhibiting their personalized versions of this.
The cards were stacked against me since the root of the problem was both nature and nurture, and I wanted to do something about it. Like everything else I had an interest in, I became consumed by the hunt for the perfect, the ultimate, skin care cure/routine/enhancer.
If my face and body were a house then I would be under constant construction–a patchwork here, a half-finished reno there, and some rooms needed so much work done that they would be totally off limits to the public.
This was not a surprise to me, as my body was a canvas on which my anxieties and random thoughts were prominently displayed, seeping out on to my skin. It is still a never-ending battle of mind against body.
Beauty and skincare give me a sense of control, expression, connection and a sense of self-worth. Although it can be a crutch, it’s also a path to self-acceptance, warts, and acne, eczema and psoriasis, anxieties and depression and all.
I’m creating this blog to write about the things I love and create work I believe in.
This is a terrible poem I came up with (feel free to LOL):
“It is when I feel my lowest and like a blob
that makes me see
the true friends around
Who are blobs just like me”
– a beauty blob