Maybe you noticed, and maybe you haven’t, but I haven’t actually had an active blog since at least 2016, if not before then. It’s a bit startling to realize you’ve been saying you have a blog when one day you realize…. No, you don’t. You have a website, and that’s about it. I’ve toyed a hundred times with the idea of starting it up again, but beauty blogging isn’t even a thing now. Not the way it was. The industry has changed so much, and all my favorite beauty blogs are dead. They’ve all purposely shut down, or were slowly abandoned, or morphed into some weird grown-up version of beauty I don’t understand anymore.
I’m guilty of it too; I abandoned my beauty blog. It wasn’t a conscious decision, at least not to begin with. It started off as a lack of excitement about what was happening in first in my life, and on a larger scale, the beauty world. I was bored with my life, with myself, with beauty. I was feeling uninspired, guilty, unworthy, and a whole fuckin’ mess of other feelings that didn’t serve me. And if they weren’t serving me, they sure as shit weren’t going to serve anyone else either. I just didn’t feel right talking about beauty when I wasn’t celebrating or even practicing it in my own life. It isn’t in me to feign excitement.
Obviously, the boredom was inevitable. I started my first version of a blog way back in February 2009. It’s been a decade of trying to stay relevant, whatever that means, in the beauty world. It gets exhausting. But for me, it was more than just burnout.
It maybe started that way, and feeling like I had nothing to say, but eventually, I didn’t have anything that I wanted to share. My life got flipped turned upside down, and quite frankly, beauty took a backseat. I had to make some major changes in my life and really focus on my mental health. Maintaining a blog, or even pretending to, was causing way more stress than it was worth.
My life became this trainwreck of trauma, heartbreak, grief, change, anxiety, and depression. Oh God, so much depression. I won’t get into the specifics here (and if you really want the hot goss, this article I wrote for NYLON in 2016 can probably give you some insight). Basically: everything in my life imploded. I was freaked out, high-strung AF, scared to go online, crying all the time, and barely able to get out of bed. I was a shell of a person.
Luckily, I recognized that I wasn’t coping well with the situation and sought professional help. Getting myself to the appointments forced me to get it together enough to survive, but that’s all I could do. SURVIVE. There was no room for beauty. I dragged myself out of bed and into weekly therapy sessions with dirty hair, greasy skin, and bleeding, chewed-up cuticles.
I felt like shit, and so I looked like shit.
When you’re tits-deep in depression, it’s hard to give a fuck about your hair, or find the energy to put makeup on, or even bother washing your face every night. It’s also difficult to afford the upkeep of a beauty routine when you’re unemployed because you’re too depressed to look for — or keep — a job. My hair grew out, got long, faded into its natural hair color because I simply couldn’t afford to get it done. That’s a super hard and embarrassing thing to admit, but it’s true. There was no “beauty on a budget” because I didn’t even have a budget. I was practicing only the very basics of personal hygiene, without experimenting or celebrating or expressing myself with makeup.
That was hard in and of itself. Makeup has always made me feel seen, but for a long time, I just wanted to be invisible. I thought if I didn’t put on makeup, I could disappear for awhile. So that’s what I did.
Depression isn’t exactly Instagrammable. I wasn’t ashamed, nor did I feel stigmatized. I just became very protective of my energy and my information. I definitely didn’t feel like posting photos of my face all over the Internet either, that’s for sure. Blogging, especially about beauty, takes a thick skin, and my newly diagnosed panic disorder had stretched my skin so thin and tight any little thing could (and did) send me into a spiral.
Eventually, with medications and therapy, I was able to get my shit together enough to wash my fucking face, and comb my fucking hair. I was trying to live out my favorite piece of advice: Love yourself enough to give a shit about what you look like. I wanted that back: I wanted to fucking celebrate my face, because I am goddamn gorgeous, and for too long, depression took that feeling away from me. I’m still working on it. Right now, beauty and makeup are less about creativity and expression and more about self-care for me. There are days when I avoid wearing makeup simply because I know I’ll be too tired to properly remove it that night. I’m also older now, which means I am tired all the fucking time, and most days I will pick an extra 20 minutes of sleep over removing makeup at night. And yet, some days I think it’s less about being tired and more about being lazy.
That’s the perfect word to describe my current beauty aesthetic: lazy, but like, in a deliberate way. When I sit down to actually do my makeup or hair, my force of habit leans me into grabbing the same colors and products. I know them so well that I can apply them quickly and with little effort. It takes the thought out of it, and not having to think about what makeup I’m gonna wear or how I’m gonna comb my hair makes it easier for me to actually do it. It might be boring to some (hell, it’s boring to me) but right now, boring works for me.
Most of the time, anyway. But I miss beauty. I miss talking about beauty. I miss being so in love with beauty that I absolutely had to write and talk about it. For too long, beauty has felt like work. As I slowly fall back in love with it, it is slowly feeling less like work and becoming fun again, and beauty should be fun! I want it to be fun! I mean, I’m the kinda gal who gets major FOMO when I think about how much fun I’m missing out on by not trying new beauty trends, like gold mascara and metallic liquid lipsticks and weird new shades of highlighter. I’ve gotten too used to ignoring new products for the comfort and ease of familiar, tried-and-true products. That’s a habit I desperately want to break, and I can think of no better way to do that than by blogging again.
Blogging has also been more rewarding than not, in every way I can think of. It has provided me a creative outlet, given me some of the most amazing experiences of my life, presented me with countless opportunities, and most importantly, has introduced me to some of my closest, most treasured friends.
Is it ill-advised to start a blog in 2019, when blogs are barely a thing and everything is an Instagram post or a video? Probably. Am I gonna do it anyway? Definitely. So I’m back, ready to share my opinions, enthusiasm, and 15 years of experience about makeup, hair care, and skincare with you. I’m also covering more lifestyle topics this time around: things to do in LA, culture, food, dating, mental health… Anything. Everything. Whatever inspires me to write. That’s the important part.