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Stuff that doesn’t work.

April 3, 2010

Sigh. It happens.

One of my best friends in law school, V, is a truly beautiful person inside and out. This blog being about the outer part, I’ll let you know that she has always advocated Aveeno products to me. I hadn’t really thought much about them before… my drugstore lotion brand at the time was Lubriderm and Aveeno just simply was the stuff next to it. Admiring the eternal, ethereal even-ness of her skin tone, I was willing to give Aveeno a shot.

This is probably one of the more pricey drugstore ranges out there. It may be next to the Lubriderm but it certainly isn’t priced like it. The skin care products are about $8 – $20, depending on the line. Still cheaper than a lot of Sephora brands, but definitely not cheap enough to be a drugstore impulse in my opinion.

I ventured for what V uses exactly, the Positively Radiant Daily Moisturizer.

Sold for about $17 at your local drugstore.

They make a huge thing about their products being natural. Another post is in the brewing re: products touting themselves as natural and thus superior, but anyway, the secret to their Positively Radiant line is soy… “With clinically proven Total Soy Complex and natural light diffusers, this daily moisturizer evens out skin tone and texture and immediately reflects light to bring out skin’s natural radiance.”

Successful salesmanship on their part. My skin tone’s wretched, thanks to my tendency to scar easily. Any blemish is guaranteed to leave a dark spot, long after the skin has evened out and the seasons have turned. I’m talking months, people. And the part about “skin’s natural radiance”? I don’t know quite exactly what they mean, perhaps somewhere between your oily skin and the J-Lo bronzed glow from your makeup, but if my skin was going to look like V’s, I’m all for it. And as per usual, it met my standard moisturizer criteria: oil-free, non-comedogenic, and with SPF. Trust me, no matter what your skin is like, those are as essential to your daily moisturizer as a cute smile, humor, and great taste in music is to a boyfriend.

It’s been many weeks now. And this moisturizer is… fine. It’s ok. But really, that is IT.

Where is the radiance? Where is the even skin? Granted, the moisturizer has not caused any problems, but my skin has pretty much stayed the same. No fewer blemishes, no lightening of darkness, no supposed evening of texture. Not any more or less oily at noontime. No feeling that my skin’s too dry nor that it’s absolutely quenched. It really is JUST OKAY, in the most flatline, unremarkable way possible.

So what does one do for products that are just fine and don’t really do anything for you? Do you consider them failures for the total sum of nothing that they achieved? Do you consider them successes for the mere fact that at least they didn’t create a volcanic eruption of rashes or zits? Do you finish the bottle? Do you give them away or return them? Do you maybe even throw them away?

Raised by fastidious Asian parents who refuse to throw away a dirty kleenex unless it is ABSOLUTELY UNUSABLE FOR ANY PURPOSE AT ALL, my path so far has been to finish the damn bottle. However, it is the one product I’ve allowed the boy to use when he needs it, just for his purposes of moisturizing through the dry Chicago winter (though lord knows he could use the SPF) and my purposes of emptying the bottle sooner . God I can’t wait to replace it. The fun is in planning what product to replace it with.

And V, well, she continues to use this everyday as her HG moisturizer, and her skin still glows to the envy of all. I guess it just goes to show that with skincare, you really just have to find the perfect combination of products that work for uniquely for you.

love,
m

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