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(It’s a Good Job) Beauty is Only Skin Deep

Me at Lizard Point, May 2013

Back in January I made a very important New Year Resolution. I promised that I would be true to myself. I said that I would think about what I really wanted, and strive to get it. I said I would consider carefully who I was, and aim to be like that all the time. Most of the time when I think about my resolution I am thinking about my dreams and aspirations, about my journey through life. But there are other much smaller things that I should also be addressing this year as part of that. One of those is the way I look.

“They” say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. And I am very lucky to be surrounded by lovely people who say I look nice and have nothing to worry about when it comes to my body. Those comments make me smile and I appreciate every one of them.

“They” also say that beauty is only skin deep. And while I do my very best to be a good person on the inside, there exactly is my problem – my skin.

Ever since I was a young teenager my skin has been terrible. Acne. Blotches. Blackheads. Yuk. I did my best to cover it all up as all teenagers do, but to no avail. I endured the “pizza face” name calling while at secondary school safe in the knowledge that at some point I would grow out of it. However at the age of 32 that day has yet to arrive. My skin is as bad now as it was fifteen to twenty years ago. Despite various treatments, potions, prescriptions, I still look at my face in the mirror and see red spotty nastiness before anything else.

And I hate it.

The thing is it’s all I can see. It upsets me. It makes me shy. I feel like it’s all that anyone else can see. I know people notice.

I do my best to keep my face clean. I do wear makeup (don’t tell me I shouldn’t, it’s not going to happen), although I only use a mousse foundation as it’s nice and light and to be honest I’ve got no idea what I should be using and can’t afford to spend loads. If I’m not going anywhere I take my makeup off when I get home from work to let my skin breathe properly. I’ve found that my Liz Earle routine helps a bit, that is when I’m good and use the products properly every day.

I know my skin (face, neck, back, arms…) gets worse when I eat a lot of greasy food, chocolate and sweets. But cutting those things out doesn’t make them go away (I cut out processed sugar completely for a month and I was still spotty). I seem to get the grease spots on top of whatever is already there. Nice. Drinking rivers of water every day doesn’t make them go away either.

You’d think that by the age of 32 I’d be able to just ignore the problem. And of course as with lots of things, most of the time I can. But some days it is totally and utterly depressing. Looking at my face in the mirror can make me feel sick and want to hide away. Not all the time, of course. Just sometimes.

What I need is a makeover. But more than that. I need someone, an expert, to tutor me into how to look after my face, how to cover my ghastly spots, and what products I should be using and when. I need tried and tested techniques that aren’t going to cost me the earth because frankly I can’t afford it – there are other things I would much rather spend my money on. That person, or another person, also needs to teach me how to apply make-up properly, to cover up the redness and blotches, and to help give me confidence when I leave my house. I’m talking something light – I’m not interested in bright lipstick or heavy eyelashes, but I love having bright eyes and a smooth face!

While we’re sorting out the way I look, how about a haircut? My mop hasn’t seen scissors for over a year now (I make no illusions about being a fashionista!). And does anyone want to do my eyebrows? I’ve never had them done.

If we’re going to make my face look nice, how about the rest of my body too? My hands and feet need some serious work – hard skin, ruined nails. And boy could I do with toning up! My friend recently employed the services of a personal trainer and is already feeling the results. Tempting! Oh and if someone will tell me which clothing styles look good, which colours work, and pay for me to have a nice wardrobe to choose from, that would be simply awesome.

Back to the face; how about some tuition in facial expressions? I simply have no idea how to make my face look nice for a photograph. Eyes half shut, frowny forehead, wonky head – and that’s me trying to pose!! So you’ll find that most of the photos I share of me are mid-adventure or just a little bit silly. There has to be someone out there who can teach me to manipulate my face in a nice way?!

You know, I’ve actually got no idea if any or all of these things would make me feel more beautiful. Or if they would sort out my problem skin (or help me get over the issue). They might make me feel pretty good for a day or two, while the hairdo lasted, when I had time to make use of the make-up techniques, while I was not too overtired to benefit from personal training sessions. I might even learn some things that made looking after my skin easier and more successful. But would I feel fabulous for the rest of my life as a result of a day of pampering? I doubt it. In fact if someone was to offer me any or all of the above, I wouldn’t know what to do with all the nerves – I’d find taking part in a wacky adventure day much easier!

It’s a good job beauty is only skin deep. I shall have to concentrate on what is underneath the horrible exterior and do my best to be pretty in my own way. I am just me after all.

What do you do to help you feel beautiful? Inside and out?

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