A couple years ago, I was in the skincare aisle at CVS with one of my friends.
“We’re going to start needing stuff like this soon,” she said, rolling a small jar of Estée Lauder anti-aging cream in her palm like a Ben Wa ball.
No, I argued. Our grandmas use that shit. We’re much too young! Not even thirty!
Well, now I’m 32, and while my mentality and maturity might still be hanging out with the sixteen-year-olds, my skin is starting to catch up to my factual age. While it’s not exactly a catch-all for wrinkles and liver spots, it’s certainly lost some of that sweet tautness it once knew a decade ago; also factor in the maniac 5-year-old boy I’m raising + all those years on the stripper pole*, and you just know the worry lines are right around the corner.
*(This is A Joke.)
So when my friend Lindsay started selling become beauty products and offered to send me a weekender sample kit, I said why the hell not. Plus, I’ve known Lindsay since high school and she’s never struck me as the type to one day turn into some chirpy Mary Kay hyper-fanatic, cruising around town in her pink Cadillac. So for her to actually be selling these products and raving about them on the daily, well, it piqued my interest because she’s not a bullshitter.
Besides, Lindsay doesn’t look a day over 25 and who the hell wouldn’t want that for themselves?
The kit had a wide range of product samples, from cleanser to toner to eye cream. The first thing I noticed when I tried the cleanser on my face was the smell. It was this delightful, light floral fragrance that was completely free of any of those harsh alcohol or medicinal odors that are commonly added to skincare products. (Remember Seabreeze? That shit doubled as smelling salts.)
As I worked my way through the line of samples that morning, I could actually start to feel my skin rebounding and tightening, and if it was a scene in a cartoon it would have come complete with a boinging sound. My pores looked smaller, too, which sucks for the elves who use them as cereal bowls while I sleep at night.
This stuff is made in Australia and has all kinds of juicy extracts of Jojoba, Australian Daisy, green tea, rosemary and pineapple, which outweigh all the crazy sesquipedalian-esque chemicals which you should never try to sound out in front of a Bulgarian lest you know the safe word.
My main skin issue is that it’s oily; on a normal day, I have the identical sebaceous sheen on my face as someone who had spent all day digging ditches with prosthetic legs in Kuala Lumpur. I spend half my day maniacally blotting and powdering, and I still look like a glazed ham by the end of the night.
The day I used the become samples, my skin stayed supple (yes, I went there) and not once did anyone come at my face with fresh hunks of Italian bread.
Later, Lindsay sent me this little sample jar of Reveal Enzyme Peel. In the morning, I smeared a small amount onto my dry, unwashed face and just started rubbing and rubbing it in until it starts gently sloughing up dead skin, which I could actually feel happening and it’s so cool. I’ve been using it every other day since last Friday and I still have some left, that’s how little is needed. I just used it a little while ago and I literally keep pausing to touch my face. IT IS SO SOFT, YOU GUYS. Piss off, dead skin; go get sprinkled on a cupcake by a cannibal.
My favorite product is the Age Resistant Color Therapy Mask. It comes in two pieces: one for the forehead and one for the lower portion of your face. How convenient! A facial mask that doesn’t get all over your fingers, hair and tentacles! The backing film peels off easily, leaving a thick, viscous orange layer which gently adheres to your face and then, well, that’s it. No need to make sure you evenly applied some gross, sticky gel or stinky clay. Set your timers, ladies; your work is done.
I kept the mask on for 20 minutes and loved every minute of it. Unlike other facial masks, which harden and make it physically impossible to activate any of your facial muscles, this mask flexed along with my face, allowing me to talk, smile and even get in a quick didgeridoo practice. I sat on the couch, delighting in the sweet ambrosia bouquet stuck like gentle leeches upon my face flesh, while relishing the fact that I looked like John Black when his face was wrapped in bandages on Days of Our Lives. (Sadly, today is not the first time I attempted to Google an image of this, and failed.)
(I love a good DAYS reference.)
This mask is, in a word, awesome. I didn’t have to worry about accidentally swiping my hand across my face, leaving it feeling like I just dunked it in a honey pot. And when the 20 minutes was up, I easily and effectively peeled off the two pieces in one fell swoop, pitched it in the garbage, and was left with a face that had the texture of porcelain. No tedious peeling of a now-dry gel mask from my cheeks or trying to scrub hardened clay from my eyebrows and beneath my nostrils. The Color Therapy mask left nothing behind, not even the smallest jelly shrapnel. Literally — all that sweet-smelling glutinous orange putty was gone; my skin drank that stuff faster than Snooki drinks coconut rum.
And it didn’t leave me with that “Just Windex’d” rubber-rubbing sensation when I touched my face like some products do. It was just completely soft and my complexion was positively dewy. I hate using all these beauty product clichés, but my skin honestly felt replenished and hydrated, and there’s just no jerky way to say that.
This stuff isn’t cheap, but if you’re serious about changing your skin, it’s worth it. I mean, I’m a tightwad, and I have totally put my stamp of approval on become. Want to see for yourself? Let Lindsay help you!
(And no, Lindsay didn’t dangle locks of Jonny Craig’s hair in front of my face or otherwise bribe me in any way to write this review other than sending me the aforementioned samples, though I suppose she could have at least thrown in a cupcake. Now I want a cupcake! Without the dead skin sprinkles, please.)