Thursday, December 8, 2011

What is up with "Beauty for the People?"

"Explain yourself, woman."

Number one, if you ever feel like spreading the word of my blog, you know, verbally, you have to say it like this: "BEAUTY FOR THE PEOPLE!" I was going to use all caps in my banner, but that is just obnoxious.

I tried to figure out what kind of tack I would take with this blog. What should stand out, concerning my approach to beauty and cosmetics? Beauty products are great for women whatever their size? That probably means I have to do outfit pictures or something. Nah. Makeup minimalist? I wish.

I don't like paying a lot for makeup. I don't mind paying a fair price, so once in a while I will fork over $20-something for a higher quality item. However, I have limits.
What a steal! I'll take three.

I cannot, cannot, in good conscience, pay $30 plus for a lipstick or even worse, lip balm. I can't even tell you how many times I pass by the Fresh displays and pick up the tinted lip treatments. I look them over. I smell them. Once I even walked towards the Sephora counter to pay for my purchase, my heart beating rapidly in my chest.

I turned around and pretended like I needed to get another item at the back of the store.

I returned the balm to the shelf and practically ran out of the store before I lost my senses and purchased it.

And that was $22.50. Could I afford it? Yes.

Did I have good, even great alternatives in my makeup case back home?


And I ask myself, how much do we want to spend on items that will eventually expire?

Have you ever finished a lipstick? I have perhaps used one or two down to the very nubs, but that's about it. Even though I use some of them very often, it just looks like the tips are worn. Could I justify spending an hour's worth of pay to purchase an item that will cease to be new, that will collect dust in my makeup drawer, that will -- one day -- no longer be the best of its kind?

This is my shopping philosophy.

Once in a while, I spend more money on certain products. Typically, they're palettes with multiple shadows or blushes. I will never, ever purchase a single eyeshadow that costs $20.

I mostly purchase drug store brands or items from places like The Body Shop, L'Occitane -- not too expensive, but higher quality and slightly higher prices than most drugstore brands. If I want a high-end product, I'll look for a sample size or wait for a limited edition package to come out, containing multiple items for a lesser price.

I can't purchase expensive items like YSL lipstick or Guerlain's Meteorites. If I do, it's a once-in-a-blue-moon kind of treat that I will cherish. I don't go out and buy multiple colors. It's a purchase I've thought about for many weeks, months, and I make sure I use it as much as I can.

But you know what? For us peons, beauty is still attainable. Great cosmetics and beauty products are still attainable. Drugstore brands are competing with the big names and churning out products which are challenging the champions of the beauty industry -- all with a dramatically lower price tag attached.

Look at the blogs around you. When I think about the major bloggers, who receive packages and packages of free makeup to review, sometimes I feel envious about the sheer amount of makeup they get to play with. But really, I don't want to be in that position. There comes a point when too much is too much. There comes a point where it's no longer a victory, a little adrenaline rush to find the perfect item.

There are many more issues to discuss when talking about my approach to purchasing cosmetics. What about organic cosmetics? Fair trade ingredients versus cheap mica? Am I a makeup minimalist?

Is it unconscionable to have such a large, expensive cosmetics collection in the society we live in today? Should we start reevaluating what we own and what we want to own?

I'll address these questions as time goes on.

In the meantime, let me know what you think about this topic. Am I crazy? Is this a good way to approach beauty? (I'd prefer the latter, but I'll take the former, too. :) )

Until then... Au Revoir!

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