Amber Skye Forbes

Writing Words With the Tips of My Toes

Fashion Friday: Thoughts on Beauty, Self-Love, and My Go-To Skin Care Products

First, I’m going to start this post by talking about something I’ve been mulling lately, something I am writing down as a possibility to keep rooted in my mind, for it is something I am very interested in pursuing in my own time. I go to Columbia College of Missouri and take their online courses. I’m majoring in English Literature, and though I feel this degree will ultimately lead me nowhere except to feed the burgeoning intelligence of my mind, I will still pursue it and finish it regardless. Some say you are obligated to have a higher pay, even at a minimum wage job, for having the perseverance to tackle as something as difficult as a college degree. It has especially been incredibly difficult for me, for my mental health forced me to take an entire year off at one point, and I was only able to take one class for a quarter after a severe mental breakdown. I could rail at the unfairness of this, because everything doesn’t happen for a reason. Yes, I am a Deist and believe in a natural god, but this Creator is apathetic and should remain so. I have a precious friend who once posted a status thanking her Christian God for all of the horrible things that have happened to her. She said it wasn’t a blame to God. It’s just her reality in conjunction with her religion. Though we have vastly different beliefs, it would break my heart if she stopped believing in God, because her belief in God is what keeps her going.

In any case, my current job is a marketer for Southern Siding. It sounds like a fancy title for someone receiving a quarter above minimum wage, but it really isn’t–because that is exactly what I am doing is marketing. I am marketing myself and the products in which potential customers are interested in in order to create a lead that will hopefully at least demo, but at the most sell so I can receive a 1.5% commission that can actually give me a full-time “career” check on part-time hours. This job is unlike working at McDonald’s, where the labor of the station you’re at likely becomes monotonous and second nature. This job rarely becomes second nature, because every time we have a weekly meeting, often two hours, we are always learning something new that increases our chances at making sales. In fact, last month, our department contributed to the one million dollars in better business the company overall made. They celebrated.

It wasn’t until this year, truly, that I began making some sort of sale every month. I have had to develop these marketing skills over the course of two years. Plus, I work for a corporation in a department, and I can switch departments if I so choose. Also, believe it or not, the skills I’ve earned with my English degree have been helpful with this job. I am ambitious. I don’t need to be told what to do. If I have an idea to better the department, I put it forth. I read the books my boss gives to me and create summaries for my co-workers to read over. I created an entire booklet over important products that, unfortunately, could not go through because we don’t have the necessary instruments and time at our hands to do so. Yet, it still counts on my resume as an ambitious project I undertook, one that took about 15 hours to do.

I haven’t created anything as of late. My mind is trapped in places no one will understand. It’s not bipolar’s doing. It’s the cause of repeated mental trauma to my brain that has drained me of the zest for life I am doing my best to grab on to when I can. It’s not all gloom with me. The gloom is within my mind. My exterior self exists for others through my smiles to strangers, hellos, nods, anything that acknowledges that they exist. More than ever I strive to make my fiance happy by wanting to do things for him with no desire to have him return anything for me.

This is neither here nor there. Just some philosophical ramblings from a too-trapped mind.

In any case, what I want beyond marketing is to become a self-taught make-up artist, part-time, really, even if it’s just fifteen hours. After all, I still want to make room for dance (the demonstration being put together is dang difficult to do, by the way). I don’t know what this springs from. In my junior year of high school I took an apt interest in make-up and doing manicures. I suppose that part of me is coming back, possibly pulled from my trauma that I think Freud would need to explain without associating it with my sexuality, as I have no sexuality due to my asexuality!

You don’t need to go to some beauty school to become a make-up artist for places like Sephora or some other make-up department in a department store. My best friend, in fact, received a job as a make-up artist at Macy’s, but ultimately dropped it in favor of a job she grew to hate. She majored in English, just like me.

What I was told to become one is to show up to a job interview wearing flawless make-up that suits you and coordinates with what you’re wearing. Yet, to me, that isn’t enough, so I am studying, hard, about everything that has to do with make-up, from contouring with various face shapes, to winged eyeliner (dang hard to do for me), to eyeshadows for different occasions, products that help better skin, and even learning about all of the products so I know what products I can recommend to people who have questions about what products would best suit them. After all, a shimmer for hooded eyes is difficult to do, as a shimmer can make hooded eyes look even more hooded. This is thanks to the incredible Stephanie Lange, whom I learned about hooded eyes from. Her Youtube channel has been my textbook. New Beauty has also been my textbook, because it is strictly about beautifying oneself, through make-up, hair, exercise, diet, and so forth. Though I want to be a make-up artist, I also want to educate myself in all possibilities of beauty, save for artificial enhancements, like botox and collagen fillers and the like, though I do know well about these and at what age you should consider using them. I’d never encourage anyone to go to these expensive procedures. Just age gracefully by starting skin care young. Even if you haven’t, it isn’t too late. I look at my mother’s skin–she’s in her 50s–and I think she is aging gracefully without botox or fillers or anything. She just knows how to take care of her skin and what products to use.

Our society is obsessed with beauty. My chapbook concentrates on this a little bit. Yet, I do not think it is wrong to want to strive to be beautiful. In some ways, I think it is natural and a form of self-love, believe it or not. We see the beauty of butterflies, the beauty of a sunny day, the beauty of light leaking through trees, and I think we want to be beautiful because nature is beautiful. We are part of nature, so we want to be beautiful like flowers and butterflies and clear, sunny days.

I have acne-prone, dry/combination skin. I get mild breakouts, I still have to use acne products to battle the few spots I get on my face, but I am overall happy with my appearance without make-up. Yet, the red blotches of acne are irritating and sometimes painful; overall, my skin does glow, and I love that facet of my skin. Even with the few spots of acne, people will nonetheless tell me I have pretty skin. I love my hair. I love my naked body. Yes, I work on these things because I want to be beautiful/maintain my beauty. I’m not sure if men care about this in the same way women do. I’m not a man, so I can’t say. Yet, I can say men are just as insecure as women. It’s just not talked about enough (*looks at feminism*).

I remain unaffected by the media, as I don’t watch much television and get wrapped up in what Kim Kardashian is doing or America’s Next Top Model or watching fashion runways or anything else. I do see fashion magazines in stores, but when I read the content, it isn’t about feeding womens’ insecurities. The content has turned into self-love, while also saying that if make-up helps with your self-esteem, fine, so here are some tips. People need to stop blaming the media. WE create the media, after all. If we didn’t feed into what the media puts out there, the media wouldn’t continually create this material.

I don’t need to wear make-up. I want to wear make-up because it’s fun. It feeds the inner artist in me. My face is a palette, and I can do with it as I please. Perhaps this stems from the trauma and links with control. Make-up allows me control over my face, a part of my body that, while it was remain untouched, was still desecrated by sexually abusive words. I don’t know if this should be a sad thing, but it’s given me a direction on a second job I’d like to take. I do not think I am meant for a 9-5 job. My mental health just seems too fragile to handle one. This is why I’m grateful for online courses. If I’m feeling sick or sad or whatever, I can lie in bed all day and work on coursework later. Also, I can look at my bare body in the mirror and know that I love it, too, even more now, especially my abs, which have now become my favorite part of my body, my legs being second.

I don’t know if lots of women can say that about themselves, and it saddens me. They think parts of themselves are ugly, instead of realizing they have control over their bodies that no one else has. That control in itself should be beautiful. Thus, it should be an exciting journey to embark on striving for self-love, even if they want to change parts of themselves. Self-love creates that beauty humans are innately attracted to. Whether or not you wear make-up doesn’t matter one bit. Strive for self-love, no matter what direction you decide to go to achieve it. Self-love starts with self-care.

Now for the skin care products I use. Keep in mind I don’t use some of these every day. I do switch out, depending on what I know my skin needs:

s965681-main-hero-300Ole Henriksen Truth Serum Vitamin C Collagen Booster

I am 24, but I have used this sample for weeks and love how it freshens and makes my skin glow. Plus, Vitamin C is very nourishing for one’s skin. I use this every day in the morning after splashing warm water on my face. You can find this at Sephora.

300Sudden Change Green Tea Facial Mask

I use this every so often in the morning when I feel my skin needs an extra oomph as far as glowiness is concerned. It contains antioxidants, which are very important to the skin to fight free-radical damage. You can find this at any drug store.

Fango_Purificante__29976.1403299109.500.659Fango Purificante Purifying Mud Mask for Face and Body

My mom just go this stuff last week. I love it. This particular type I posted is for acne-prone skin. It gives my skin a next-day glow. I use it as needed. It’s a big jar, so it can last a while. I think you can only get it online. There are plenty of mud masks from Fango to suit what you need for your skin. Simply copy and paste the above name to find the website.

300Perfect Image Level 2 Salicylic Acid 20% Gel Peel

This has green tea extract, too, a natural antioxidant. I use this once every two weeks, and it gives me a long-wear glow. It also helps strip away the top layer of your skin, revealing smoother skin beneath. It does burn, yes. It’s best to leave it on for no more than 2 minutes, if you can handle it. If not, wash it off sooner. Directions come with it. You can get this on Amazon.

f91b2d00dee61e2f591a139bde4628a2Retin-A

This isn’t the exact product I use, but it’s retinol. What it does is it speeds up the process of cell turnover, so it makes your skin cells less sticky. This is the number one anti-aging cream. I use the gel version of it, which is harsher, but I do not use it every day. I use it when I feel my skin needs it.

s1567197-main-hero-300First Aid Beauty: Ultra Repair Liquid

I always, always, always use this after I’ve washed my face during my showers and pat my skin dry. NEVER, ever rub your skin dry. Never rub your skin period when applying any sort of facial product. This prevents dryness, redness, and flaky skin. It is a wonderful godsend. You can find this at Sephora.

s1217744-main-hero-300First Aid Beauty: Ultra Repair Cream Intense Hydration

As with the above product, I use this after using some product that helps with acne. Repairing moisturizers are more important than regular ones because they actively repair skin while your other skin-care products work to help your skin. Due to these two products, my skin is not really dry (though there is some peel from the acid peel, which is normal), red, blotchy, any of that other stuff that normal moisturizers generally can’t combat. This can be found at Sephora as well.

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Biore Charcoal Bar

I generally use this as my soap. It pulls out excess oils. I don’t use it for a few days after my acid peel, though. You can find this at any store that sells beauty products.

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Philosophy Purity Made Simple

This is the ONLY cleansing product I will put on my face for the next few days after my acid peel. It is the gentlest, most effective cleanser you can find on the skin care market, marvelous for sensitive skin like mine. You can find this at Sephora.

You can actually find a lot of these products elsewhere. Sephora is just where I go.

Yes, I use A LOT of skin care products, but keep in mind I switch up what I use based on what I think my skin needs. I usually use my charcoal bar, some sort of acne cleanser, and then my two moisturizers. So I never use more than four products a day. The only thing I use in the morning is the Vitamin C Serum and a moisturizer with SPF 30, which can be found in regular drug stores.

Using these products doesn’t always prevent breakouts or cure enlarged pores or sometimes blotchy skin, but they help you maintain a youthful appearance. Like I’ve said, I’m 24, but a lot of people think I’m 7 years younger.

As a note, if you beauty gurus who read this have written articles about  make-up, please, please, please put your links below as part of material I need to study.

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