Disclaimer: this post has been brought to you by at least 4 people trying to sell me their “miracle” skin stuff they’re selling. And one being rude when I rejected politely, saying something like “well if you’re not interested in clear healthy skin, that’s fine.” Oi.

Earlier this year (TMI alert) I developed an allergy to my go-to brand of deodorant. It’s not the first time. They keep changing the darn formulas. It’s ok though, because it didn’t really work well. I mean, better than any other had, but not great (Secret, if you were wondering). I’d already developed allergies or immunities to most other brands.

So I tried switching to an aerosol. Which worked waaaaay better! And gave me a terrible reaction. No go.

Other things I tried this year: creating a regular beauty routine for myself so that I could take better care of my skin. I was having some breakouts, and watching way too many online videos talking about skin health, and routines, and exfoliation. I’ve never really had one, so I decided to try it when my skin got insanely dry and flakey and more prone to acne.

I grabbed some pore strips, which I was planning on getting anyway because my nose is really prone to blackheads. I also grabbed an exfoliating face wash and decided to try developing a new routine.

Prior to this, my routine was to remove eye makeup and use tea tree wipes on my face before bed.

Did you know most facial scrubs use salicylic acid? Yeah. Acne got way worse.

So I switched to a “facial milk”. Whatever the heck that is. Basically, it feels like cleaning my skin with lotion. But it works! I also got some of those silicone exfoliating pad thingymados. I’m 99.99% they don’t actually exfoliate.

And it didn’t help me at all.

Then I went camping with Ian and the gang from work and brought exactly 2 things with me: cotton pads and micellar water to remove eye makeup.

And you know what? My skin was amazing. Even with ahem certain hormones.

Mom imparted her secret: she’s never had a skin care routine.

And you know what? My skin hated all that crap that they promoted in the videos.

So what did work?

I purchased a roll-on bleaching deodorant (dark hair = dark under arms). It’s amazing, leaves no residue, and I’ve only felt like it wasn’t working once, and it wasn’t dance class. I DANCE with this stuff!

I stopped using tea tree oil on my face. I use micellar water nightly to remove makeup, and when I want a more thorough clean, I’ll grab that milk stuff. I use African black soap in the shower (yup, I wash my face in the shower because I’m a rebel). Those pore strips are horrible quality and do more harm than good I think. I did grab silver powder which has helped my blackheads. What helped more? Realizing I rest my face in my hand at work all day. Oops.

Looking back, it’s pretty amazing how much I let those videos influence what I did. The thing is, those routines work for those people. But they don’t for me. I have pretty dry skin, so too much of that just makes it worse. The same goes for my hair. My hair is a combination of textures, but if I curl it right, I can go around 5 days without it getting greasy. 5 days. Straight hair is another story.

Fay is completely different. In high school, Mom asked me to increase my hygiene routines so she would pick up my habits (secret’s out). Not that younger sisters ever copy older ones….

Anyway. Fay needs to wash her hair daily, especially with it being so short. The soaps I use don’t work for her and vice versa. We’re sisters, but our bodies and health are completely different.

So that’s my lesson for today: ignore the beauty videos and listen to your own bodies. Please don’t learn the hard way like I did.

Stupid fascinating BuzzFeed videos.