Wednesday, July 1, 2015

So, How About Those New Year's Resolutions?

Now that exactly half of 2015 is behind us, I thought it might be interesting to revisit the beauty resolutions I made at the end of last year and see how many I managed to keep in the last six months. I can't actually remember all of them off the top of my head, which doesn't bode well for the self-assessment I'm about to make. Let's see...

1. Choose quality over quantity.

If memory serves, I've bought slightly fewer things in the first half of 2015 than I did in the first half of 2014, but I've definitely chosen quantity over quality more than once. Most of my new products from this year are drugstore or mid-range, with the exceptions of NARS Angela and Illamasqua Melange, a queenly gold/copper-flecked teal nail polish I haven't gotten around to reviewing:


But price and quality aren't always correlated, and I'm satisfied with more of my recent purchases than I was at this time last year. I think I've gotten better at identifying which products will work well and suit my lifestyle and preferred looks. However, I did succumb to the allure of low prices with my two ColourPop hauls and my NYX order from Ulta, and surprise: quite a few of those products proved disappointing. I certainly have room for improvement in the next six months.

2. Buy new products only to fill a real gap in my collection.

I don't think this is a very good resolution, because it's far too easy for me to identify gaps in my collection. I don't own any highlighters yet, so I'm justified in buying two! I have plenty of plum and violet lip colors, including both lipsticks and glosses, but I don't have an opaque gloss in that color family! And so on. Drawing a distinction between makeup I "need" and "don't need" is futile anyway, since all makeup is ultimately unnecessary. I'd rather own three taupe eyeshadows and wear them all than "fill a gap" and buy a black lipstick or fuchsia eyeliner that goes unworn.

3. Use up at least five lipsticks.

Yeah, that hasn't happened. I did finally use up my remaining nub of NARS Dolce Vita, but that was almost empty at the end of 2014. Everything else clings to life. I still have hope for the second half of 2015, though! Urban Decay Streak, Maybelline Brazen Berry, and MAC Up the Amp are much diminished, and I will finish my tiny nugget of Revlon Plum Velour by the end of the year. I've surprised myself by reaching for it several times this summer, not because I wanted to make a bigger dent but because I actually felt like wearing it.

 
Despite the wording of my resolution, I refuse to feel guilty for not using up these lipsticks yet. I've used them so much already because I enjoy wearing them, and I want to continue to enjoy them while they're still around instead of viewing them as burdens. I wouldn't even be surprised if I repurchased all of these shades, so I might as well make them last.

4. Remove makeup, wash my face, and moisturize before falling asleep.

Yes and no. I've gotten much better at removing my makeup and washing my face several hours before I feel tired, but I'm still falling asleep with all the lights on, which means I'm still not moisturizing regularly. Sometimes I put on moisturizer after I wash off my makeup, but I feel silly doing that so far in advance of bedtime. Better early than never, I guess.

5. Try new beauty brands, favoring small, cruelty-free ones.

ColourPop and Inglot are the only new-to-me brands I've tried so far in 2015. The problem with this resolution is that I don't like to buy products I haven't first seen in person, and most small, cruelty-free brands are available only online. Since I've had such a mixed experience with ColourPop, I'm reluctant to order blind from any other brand, no matter how positive the online reviews or how trustworthy the reviewer. That said, I used up a body lotion, a shower gel, and a lip balm in just the past week, and I'm thinking about ordering from Haus of Gloi and Hurraw! for replacements. It would be nice to support small brands that are actually small and not backed by nameless larger companies.

6. Write more creative posts.

I wish I could have seen into the future while writing these resolutions and taken the advice I offered to new bloggers in this post: "The more promises you make, the guiltier you'll feel at your inevitable failure to fulfill all of them, and the more guilt creeps into your blogging, the less fun it will be for you." The fact is, I haven't produced many creative posts this year. I've produced quite a few long posts, and quite a few rants, but not many posts along the lines of A Discourse of Auxiliary Beauty. I have several ideas for creative posts, and have in fact been sitting on some of those ideas for over a year, but it just...isn't happening. It will happen eventually, I'm sure. But creativity takes time, and sometimes I just want to describe a lipstick. Resolution for 2016: write better resolutions.

Did you make any beauty-related resolutions for this year? How are you doing with them?

6 comments:

  1. Well, one of my beauty resolutions was to check in and review my resolutions and commitment to them monthly, which I haven't done, so...

    I'm doing okay, I guess. There's substantial room for improvement right now.

    The good thing about indie brands is that they do offer sample sizes, or minis to try things out! Though if you're me and shop often from American indies, you just blind buy all the time because of shipping.

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    1. Ah yes, I've made that resolution too. Alas, my short-term memory is so bad that I forget not only what my resolutions are, but that I resolved to check in regularly. I'm surprised I managed this half-year check, actually...

      Good point about samples!

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  2. Haha, I view sooo many of my lipsticks as burdens. Some of them were GWP, or bought in a bundle, or whatever, so I don't particularly feel strongly for them and I just reeeeally wanna use them up.

    Btw do you dig out that last little nub inside the plastic casing? I do.

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    1. My most burdensome lipstick right now is the MUFE mini that came with last year's Sephora birthday gift. I haven't touched it because it's such a drab shade of pinkish brown, but I don't want to throw it away because, well, I haven't touched it yet!

      As for the little nub, it depends on the lipstick. I didn't do that with Dolce Vita because I felt silly applying such a sheer, neutral lipstick with a brush. I already had a backup, too.

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  3. I love your blog posts! They're honest and unique, which is pretty damn "creative" in blogging as a whole. I think it's really special that, if you lined up all the day's beauty blog posts for me, I could pick out which one is yours immediately.

    Also, I absolutely like the idea of small, cruelty free brands, but in my experience the Hurraw lip balms are a very thin consistency and wear off quickly (they remind me most of the SoftLips I used to buy before I was allowed to wear makeup). Since you've mentioned moisturizing products often leave your lips dry, I'm thinking these won't be moisturizing enough for you. BUT maybe you'll be pleasantly surprised.

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    1. Thank you! That's incredibly flattering. And thanks for the Hurraw advice; my lips are so sensitive that I should probably play it safe and repurchase what's worked for me in the past. Palmer's cocoa butter balm is the most effective for me, and it has a very thick consistency, so you're right that a thinner balm might be disappointing. I was just tempted by all the cool-sounding flavors!

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