Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Are you selfish about giving out your beauty secrets?

(Warning: long post ahead)

Generally I’d say that I am a relatively stingy person (selfish is such a strong word). I mostly keep to myself and seldom share. I’ve been blogging since I graduated from college, and mostly my thoughts, raves or rants were posted on my previous blogs (God knows I’ve had several abandoned ones) as opposed to sharing them with the occasional girl friend or boyfriend.

But over time, I’ve learned to openly blog about more personal stuff like my favorite so-so and other mundane stuff. I mean, being selfish defeats the purpose of having a blog of which the main purpose is to SHARE, right?

If you’ve been following my blog you’d notice that I mostly write about skin care and basic makeup. Why so? Well growing up, I’ve always been fascinated with the perfect canvas. I wasn’t blessed with perfect skin (unlike my Mom), much to my dismay. I am prone to pimples, blackheads, oil – the whole enchilada. Basically I am just like any other woman out there living in the tropics trying to protect her skin from the sun, heat and the occasional breakout.

I always believed that if I had clear, pimple-free skin, then I could skip the heavy makeup altogether and just apply cheek stain or a tinted lip. And so from my college days to my 20’s I’ve never changed. My routine is still as simple as ever. My boyfriend loves it when I have minimal makeup on, but I know some of my friends say I should learn to play with colorful eye makeup and other stuff. I say, that’s what makeup artists are for (and I’m just lazy, boo).

How did my so-called obsession start?

I remember my Dermatologist telling me one day while I was in my teens that I don’t need a hella lot of makeup, as long as my skin is clear, luminous and healthy then that’s all that matters. What she neglected to tell me was that I had sensitive skin, therefore it wasn’t ideal for me to “experiment” with just any skin care or makeup brand. I had to learn this the hard way though. All throughout my years of trying several makeup and skin care brands/trends my skin would retaliate with rashes or pimples. This was regardless of brand or price point – my skin was really sensitive.

So the bottomline is, I mainly stick with the products that my Dermatologist recommends, and I’m proud that I’ve been loyal for the past 10 years of my life. This is not to say that I don’t feel the urge to stray and try out other brands. I still do, but I learned to check out the ingredients list before purchasing. And this is how I became the stringent person that I am, and how I got into the whole organics thing in the first place.

And this, my friends, is why I deem blog reviews as important. If I could talk to someone who has tried ALL of the products that I am eyeing right now, then he or she would be a godsend! However, seeing as this would be nearly impossible, the next best thing is to check out blog reviews online.

I believe blog reviews are practically useful especially if it is written objectively. A lot of people rely on blogs before purchasing (I know I do), it’s nice to get some added info from someone who has actually used the product, as opposed to just relying on the product description or what the company wants you to believe. But then again, I don’t like blogs who sound like they just lifted stuff from the press kit. So if you’re a beauty/fashion blogger, try to sound more human, please.

In line with this, I try my very best to be thorough with my reviews (if time permits, of course) so as to be as helpful as possible to would-be buyers. As much as possible I try to describe how it feels on the skin, how it fares as I go about my life, if it's worth investing in at all, etc. So I hope my reviews have been helpful and informative to you guys. I love writing reviews and I love reading them (from other bloggers) as well.

So going back to the question “Are you selfish about your beauty secrets?”, I can say that I am more willing to share information now than let's say 5 years ago. If I am enjoying relatively good skin and somebody compliments me about it, I'd be more than willing to tell her which products I am using and then cross my fingers and hope it works for her as it did for me. Realizing that we all have different skin types, sharing a beauty secret to a colleague won’t guarantee that her skin, hair or cuticles will be as pretty as yours. On the other hand, withholding information won’t make you prettier than her in contrast.

However, I feel majorly different about people who “copy” me fashion-wise. I remember recently I was with a friend and whenever I’d point out a certain style or brand that I am liking or am eyeing for purchase, instantly the next moment we’d be together that person would be sporting whatever it is I shared the last time.

Therefore, I am not as willing to share about my good finds, cheap or otherwise. If I am complimented on my dress or shoes, I just say, "Oh I found this at the back of my closet" or "I bought this online". I'd hate to have a twin walking around with the exact same outfit. Yes, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery but being a cop out sucks big time.

So what about you, are you (even a tad) selfish about sharing your beauty secrets? Or if you’re willing to share, is it something you’ll do freely without hesitation? Would you withhold certain information just so that your friends would not know the entire secret or have you come across women who guard their beauty secrets really jealously?

I'd love to hear what you think :)


  1. As someone learning who is just learning about make-up, most of my "beauty secrets" are copied or based from other bloggers as well (recommendations, reviews, etc). So there's really nothing new about my beauty routine. I like sticking to tried and tested regimens that work for me. That is why I like reading well-written beauty blogs, seeing that there are so many out there.

  2. Me too! I was really an uber fan of Liz's blog from the start, and eventually that's how I got into makeup. But I still stick with my simple routine..I have yet to get out of my comfort zone cos my skin's sensitive.

  3. I'm not selfish about my beauty secrets at all. In fact, I enjoy talking about my favorite beauty finds. Like you, I have very sensitive skin, and spent most of my adolescent years with a face covered in zits. If blogging were big back then, I bet I could have easily avoided the cosmetics and skin care products that made my skin break out. But fashion is another story - I tend to be a bit more tight-lipped about that one.

  4. Oh, I freely share! One of the major reasons that drove me to finally start The Reluctant Stylista was because I share your sentiments about skincare and routines. And I know a lot of girls are intimidated by fashion and make-up, they don't really get that it's not supposed to be that way. They don't have to be pros, they just have to start caring because one day they might regret not paying attention to the even most basic stuff when they were younger. So I like sharing stuff with girls who are in that mind set; I made that blog partly because of them (hence, the title of my blog).

    I don't consider myself a make-up junkie; like you, I'm more interested about improving the basic canvas. Which is why I rarely buy foundation, I've always used tinted moisturizers. I want to have the best skin I can manage because 1) i dont have perfect skin 2) makeup is better for enhancing not hiding what's already there 3) i'm not planning on wearing makeup when i get older--so i want my natural skin to be good enough to stay bare when the time comes. :D

  5. @Alex: Good point on "I'm not planning on wearing makeup when i get older--so I want my natural skin to be good enough to stay bare when the time comes". I agree wholeheartedly :)

  6. hi kira! who's your dermatologist? your skin looks great now.

  7. Hi @Anonymous! Thank you soo much :) It's Dra. Evylina Guzman of Capitol Medical Center. I only have a facial/extraction every month or so after my period. I've been using her Softening Lotion/Toner for 10+ years, and I use Skin Hour's Day Cream and Night Cream religiously. My skin has never been better :)