Diary: Real Beauty Secrets

(Photo from web...don't know the credits)

This post is for those of you with young girls or those of you just getting started with makeup and skincare. I hope this will save you not only money, but sorrow. A lot of people don't realize how awful low self-confidence and self-esteem can be. Women sometimes compensate for these feelings by purchasing expensive products and makeup they hope will magically change what they don't like about themselves.

I am guilty of that behavior..

I'm very gullible, even as an adult. So you can imagine how awful it was to go through that awkward teenage phase watching skincare and makeup advertisements with my eyes wide open and a whole lotta hope. I kept thinking if I just bought that one cream or lipgloss, I would look like (insert actress name here.)

Now that I know better, I want to clear up some beauty myths to keep as many of you lovelies as I can from making the same mistake. Is there a lesson here? Perhaps. But I won't be preaching, because in many ways I am still as gullible and awkward as I was then.

If anyone can counter something that I wrote with tested advice please feel free to do so! This is all about helping each other out!

1) No amount of product can change genetics- No matter what you put on your face if people in your family (especially mom or dad) are prone to certain skin issues, chances are you will be too. While you can control the issues to a certain extent, no product will make your large pores go away or your dry skin magically smooth forever. Accepting this from the beginning will keep you from compulsive shopping. Think control, not cure.

2) When a celebrity boasts they use a certain expensive product, there's a big chance it's not true- Do you honestly think Sarah Jessica Parker dyes her hair with Garnier? Or that Beyonce dyes her hair with L'Oreal? Let's get real here; they go to top salons and drop hundreds on their tresses. That's not to say box/drugstore dye isn't good, I use box dye/drugstore all the time, just don't expect the same magical transformation the digitally enhanced (and sponsored) commercials give you!

3) Cover models usually use what's in the makeup artist's kit...not what the sidebars suggest they use. - The reason I write this is because I have noticed, many times, that a "get the look" section will suggest products I KNOW were not used on the actresses. How do I know? Because I might have the same product myself and can tell the difference. Or the model will have dark, smokey eyes and the color range of the makeup line wouldn't even cover that look.

I could, of course, be wrong (Please correct me in the comments!) Sometimes products actresses represent ARE used in a shoot, but not always. For example, Jennifer Garner is a spokesperson for Neutrogena. I like Jen Garner, so when she's mentioned in a magazine I pay attention to what she talks about beauty-wise. You are guaranteed to see non-Neutrogena products mentioned. Be cautious when thinking of purchasing something your favorite star mentions. Much like YouTube, you never know if they're being sponsored or given stuff for free. (FTC changed that of course...but only on YouTube and in the blogosphere.)

4. This might be obvious to some...but mascara commercials are as fake as the boobies on South Beach!

If they aren't CGI lashes, they are totally falsies (sometimes more than one pair!). If you want to look like a mascara commercial, skip the tube of Great Lash (which I don't like and don't understand the obsession with) and get some Ardell lashes. They're probably a few steps away from the mascara in your local drugstore.

5) This relates to number 1, but "remedies" aren't a magical cure either.

Megan Fox got some heat for saying she stays thin drinking apple cider vinegar because it "flushes out the toxins." Riiiiight. She's thin and gorgeous because she has the genes and doctors to make her that way. Think of body types. Again I will use Beyonce. She has an hourglass figure that you know she has to work hard to maintain or she could easily gain weight. Apple cider vinegar won't make you or Beyonce look like Megan Fox. If you work out and eat right your body will fall into a healthy weight range (unless you have hormonal issues) and look as it is supposed to look. You can't shrink your skeletal or muscular structure; which plays into how you look at lower and higher weight ranges. If Megan Fox and I wore the same clothing size, we would still look completely different.

*One tip that IS important and true: Drink water. Your insides need it, not just your complexion (and even water won't cure cystic acne-prone skin!) But dehydration contributes to ailments a lot of us face every day (headaches, fatigue, etc.) that aren't much fun.

Bottom line: Products, whether they are for face, hair, nails, or body, will only help so much. They are meant to enhance and soothe issues, not erase them. You can fight certain things with makeup and skincare, but you can't fight your genes and you can't fight nature. Don't spend a fortune trying to find the one product that will! It doesn't exist. Buy what works for you and treat yourself to some things every now and then. But the next time you look at a glossy magazine ad, I hope you remember this post and turn the critical eyes you keep on yourself toward that computer-generated and fake magazine. I need to try my best to do the same.


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