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Husband: Wow, the dark circles under your eyes are like half of what they usually are. Are you using something new?

Me: Why, yes! (I am giddy with excitement). I am trying out a new eye gel to use in my treatments. It seems to be working…

Husband: Well, it’s still early. Let’s take another look in eight hours.

Eight hours later…

Me: Well?

Husband: Well what?

Me: My eyes!

Husband: What? You can’t see?

Me: Whatever.

The New York Times is reporting that Washington is introducing a ban on antibiotics given to healthy cows, pigs and chickens (i.e. our food supply).  The farm lobby opposition could make the bill impassable, but at least it’s a start. I am not clear if these antibiotics encompass the hormones given to these animals (or if the antibiotics and hormones are one in the same).

If we could live in a synthetic hormone free food world, I would be very happy. I would also be curious to see if this impacts skin the severity and incidences of acne.  Here’s hoping an enterprising research scientist/MD does a study!

smoothaway_product_highlightMythbuster Beauty reviews Smooth Away, those magic “As Seen On TV” hair removal pads. Kudos to Mo for braving this torture device so the rest of us don’t have to! Those things scare the crap out of me. I am currently trying out my own “As Seen On TV” product which will be reviewed once I go a few more rounds. As they say, stay tuned!

SC_luxe_eye_lift_cream_normalMy new power plate trainer Kim just started seeing me for facials after a disastrous microderm at a very popular med-spa. One problem was that the esthetician sold her a cleanser that was just not working for her skin. Poor Kim was having serious reactions from it, and when I researched the line and ingredients I took her right off the crap. Lousy line.

Last week, she finally went back to the spa to return the product. The esthy was at the front desk and got very awfully pissed that she was returning the product. “You saw someone else for a facial and that’s why you are returning this!” “This is THE BEST line out there, your skin can’t be reacting to it!” “Fine, do you need some soap, how about trying some hand soap!” Apparently it was so endless, the receptionist had to step in.

I also had a crap sales experience that same weekend. I wandered into the cosmetics area of Nordstrom and was poking around La Prairie. The saleswoman really wanted me to buy their Caviar Eye Cream.  “What else is in it, besides the caviar,” I asked as I patted it around my eyes. “Oh loads of stuff that’s really good for you–La Prairie works at the cellular level.” She kept repeating that it worked at the cellular level. WTF does that MEAN, it works at the cellular level? Then she got mad at me when I tried an eye gel over an area where I placed a tiny dab of the eye cream. “These products are too strong for that!” Umm, I think my cellular level can handle it.

I generally like La Prairie’s product; it’s a good lux line. I actually think it is better than La Mer.  But La Prairie should be ashamed to have this saleswoman prattle about product working at the cellular level.  Let’s face it, most skin care cos make that claim these days.  And if it really DID work at the cellular level, the FDA would be all over it.

I did not buy the cream because she annoyed me. And after 20 minutes, it puffed out my eyes.

So I dealt with a shitty product pusher and poor Kim dealt with the wrath of an angry esthy who did not want to lose her $3.50 commission on the returned product.

I get how hard it is to push product. I do my fair share of product pushing, and it is downright difficult. But I don’t believe in berating or belittling to make the sale. That’s just shitty.

I suppose that’s why there is such an allure to the drug store, where you can just browse at your leisure and not worry about nasty women picking apart your flaws or getting steaming mad at you for perceived crimes against beauty.

Dangerous-Girl-eJen over at Mythbuster Beauty has a great post about beauty product reviews. I really love her site–it’s informative, entertaining, and I think she has good product taste!

Posing the question “who can you trust,” she asks her readers to be skeptical of reviews,  even of her! Agreed! Product reviews and recommendations with skin care are tricky. Everyone’s skin reacts different, and even under my mag lamp, sometimes it can be hard to figure out what the skin will tolerate. And when I blog my recommendations, or (more importantly) when I am trying out a new line to retail and use on clients, it’s often based on my own reaction to a product. If I know I will react poorly based on my skin type and ingredients, I will ask someone to test it out for me. (Usually my mother-in-law! That woman is now swimming in product).

When I was a beauty editor, it was a given that product mentions were often contingent on ad dollars spent. Mass market companies received plenty of editorial endorsements since they had the budget to buy big ads. And since many big cosmetic companies spent the past decade or so on a boutique brand buying spree, it stands to reason that these boutique brands gain more editorial clout. And as the ad dollars continue to decline at the glossies, keeping those advertisers happy is really about survival.

PS–this image was just too brilliant to resist! All skeptics go to hell! WHEE! See y’all there!