Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Let's Oil Up


So, the rubbing of petroleum products on my face.

One effect of living in a suburb, where everything is so conveniently arrayed for my vehicular consumption, is that when I need to go somewhere that's more than five minutes from my driveway, I get kind of huffy. On Sunday I set out to take Laura to her book club meeting, and then realized the little girl's house was like eight miles away and I was all LET THIS CUP PASS FROM ME. I mean, eight whole miles?!? There be dragons.

But I took her down there and then since I was so far, I didn't go home, I went to Trader Joe's, which, Trader Joe's on a Sunday in December, wow, I've never seen that many Obama supporters in one place in metro Atlanta in ever. I went to fetch a bottle of evening primrose oil capsules, as the wise Elle suggested. I have been having dry, irritable skin lately. I can't think what has changed in my personal ecosystem, except that the weather got colder (though then it got drastically warmer). It's like I'm inflamed, but I lead a pretty anti-inflammatory life, I think. With my kale and my sardine-love and all. I'm turning 40 this week; is this what 40 is going to be like?

So there is so much going and coming and wind blowing and working out and sweating and wiping my face that I was just feeling like I wanted some kind of thick protective layer on there. One day last week, in desperation, I rubbed aquaphor on my hands and then put it all over my face.

You see, I come from a long line of southern women for whom Vaseline is like penicillin. It is just a good place to start. You administer the vaseline and then see where you are. "Put some vaseline on it" was a common, common prescription in my grandmother's house. So white petrolatum is like home to me.

And you know, I don't know if that stuff leached into my brain or anything, but it did make my skin feel supple and it gave me a nice shininess. Funny, you spend your teens and twenties not wanting to look shiny, and now, I'll take shiny just great. I think oil is our friend.

So what are you guys using to keep yourselves fully oiled and in smooth working order? I feel I've gone beyond one of those normal lotiony moisturizers. I have one from Origins that I like, but it's the Dr. Weil mushroomy one and Matt calls it "Not Tonight, Honey." Is there some essential oil y'all are smearing on yourselves?

Do tell. xoxo

25 comments:

Bree said...

Face oil? This is the jam. http://www.makeupalley.com/product/showreview.asp/ID=6821/

Keely said...

Actually, I just stick with straight avocado oil.

delaine said...

Vaseline can be a boon to ladies with drying issues. I hesitate to say that yes, unfortunately one's skin usually gets drier after age forty. But, wait a minute! How is it possible that you are almost forty? I think it's hitting me harder than it is hitting you. When I was turning forty, you were turning seventeen. It's disturbing that those forty years have glided by so smoothly and effortlessly. Perhaps it was the lubricating effects of the jar of Vaseline that has been under the bathroom sink for years? On another subject, I'd like to hear about Laura's book club. What'd they read?

delaine said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Emskyrooney said...

I actually use the "oil cleansing method" for washing my face at night. If you google it you can get the proportions but I basically use olive oil, tea tree oil, castor oil and some essential oils. Keeps my skin so nice and moisturizer (but not greasy) even in dry cold New England winters....

Roving Lemon said...

I have just discovered, via reading Bad Science (have you read this yet? if not, you totally should, it's pretty amazing: http://ow.ly/fPJ7Y), that I am more of a sucker than a discerning customer in this area, and that I could replace my pricey, fancy-pants facial moisturizer with a jar of vaseline and get the exact same result. So I'm preparing to test this out, as soon as I finish up the fancy-pants stuff (frugal!).

Elizabeth said...

I think it's all about genes. I don't do a damn thing with my face except occasionally wash it with some sort of liquid face soap (Origins) and put moisturizer on it -- whatever kind. I have pretty supple skin, which is partly due to being overweight I think and the rest genes (and I'll be FIFTY in 2013).

AlGalMom said...

I've been dabbling with making my own soap (putting that Chemistry degree to good use!) and boy my hands have seemed much less cracky and dry since I started using it. Now, I'm not sure whether I can completely attribute this to handmade soap, since LA does have a much different (and less drying) winter season than IN, but it makes me happy to think so. :)

AlGalMom said...

nuts. I just realized I missed an opportunity to be a smart ass. rewind.... "I use a tincture of white truffle oil, spiders' milk, and artesian spring water collected by Eunuchs in the Himalayas. And I make sure to bathe my face in the light of the full moon each month. This keeps me looking not a day older than 35, even though I will turn 150 this year. Also, I am a vampire."

M said...

If dry skin is anathema to you, I recommend you avoid menopause. I eat as much salmon as is humanly possible and slather on generous amounts of Clinique dramatically different moisturizer which is the same substance as any drugstore brand but comes with free cosmetics if you time your purchase right.
Speaking of drugstores, let me recommend to all a fantastic lotion for dry hands and feet: Udderly Smooth, created for use on cow udders. It's middle-age woman tested and cow approved and comes in the same packaging as an old Gateway computer.
I cannot speak highly enough of Shea butter as the magic ingredient of any decent lotion.

Becky said...

Mary, you had me at old Gateway computer. LOLOL. And AlGal, there's a plan. Step 1, be a vampire.

You guys crack me up AND are full of useful information! Win!

Sandy said...

All those years I complained about my "oily" skin and now with menopause making its appearance I would love some of that oil back! I did find that Covergirl makes a moisturizer with a tint and I love it. Even get compliments on my skin. I never use soap on my face and that helps a lot!

Cassi Renee said...

My skin has pretty much always been dry, and years (many, many, years) back I started using Lubriderm. I still use it. Wash with soap, lubriderm, and I'm good to go.

When I was a kid, we used A&D Ointment, rather than Vasoline petroleum jelly, but I'll bet it's almost the same thing. I used it with Emma when she was a baby, and I still keep it around --it helps so much with healing paper-cuts and dry skin cracks on my fingertips in the winter. Funny that a petroleum product would be so good for your skin :-)

Lisa Lilienthal said...

I love that you can go to Trader Joe's to get your democrat fix! Doesn't work in South Orange County. I use Eminence herbal remedy oil on my face (sparingly, it is pricey, but it is liquid gold). But my skin, at age 48, is STILL oily/combination so I rarely have any dryness issues. However, I do think it's a good idea for your bod and the planet to phase out anything petroleum based, so I look for Shea in body lotion and like Bert's Bees (the ones in the flat jar that are more substantial than that in the bottle).

Lisa Lilienthal said...

Oh and I HIGHLY agree with Bree on the Nuxe Oil. I use it a lot in the summer and it has a nice scent too. And it is endorsed by Gwyneth/Goop, if you're in to that.

Allison said...

In Tucson, where the humidity can dip as low as 8%, I am using jars of Nivea by the truckload on my hands at night. So far the hands are good, but my heels are cracking. It's a constant struggle to keep the dermis hydrated.

Patience said...

I find Vaseline works the best and I'm 50 and have had dry skin for most of my life. For cracked finger tip skin; Burt's Bees Lemon Cuticle cream is the best ever. Rub it in every night and it so works. (and I live in Toronto Canada (not as dry cold as the prairies but bad enough)

Amy said...

Jason's mom gave me a jar of Kiehl's midnight recovery--it's an oil that your rub in, but doesn't feel greasy once it's on. I really like it!

And Mom--seriously that one jar of Vaseline is a fixture of my childhood. I checked last time we were home and it's still there!

Star said...

A friend brought me a marveous 100% sesame oil from her vacation in Egypt. It works great, but it makes one smell kinda like a peanut butter sandwich. For my face, I use a wonderful cream with blueberries made by the monks of my local monastery. It works great, and it costs about 1/4 of the commercially available creams (for one thing, they don't have ad, fancy packaging, transport and high management costs).

Holiday said...

Okay, I *might* try this. I'm a little squicked out by goopy stuff, though. But, my 40+ skin is looking a bit more parchmenty than I'd prefer. I do like this stuff, though, since you get to rinse it off before going to bed...http://www.zappos.com/bioelements-kerafole-no-color?si1094419=&channel=173&mr:referralID=5258deed-3fce-11e2-b779-001b2166c62d

puncturedbicycle said...

Seems to me that 99% of the normal drugstore moisturising stuff is Vaseline + nice smells, and though like Cassie Renee I was brought up on the A+D, I'm now a bit anti-petroleum products. I clean my face with olive oil (oil cleansing method, as mentioned above). It's cheap, it smells good, it has an excellent pedigree and it removes all the makeup and gunk really nicely. It doesn't irritate eyes or skin either. Throw in some castor oil if you like, add a steamy washcloth and you're done. (The only downside I can think of is that all my makeup-removing washcloths look pretty grotty despite washing them in hot bleachy water.)

In my family we don't really get wrinkly, but our faces slowly melt shar pei style, so olive oil will not save me. I will eventually need a big bulldog clip on the crown of my head, more's the pity. Then I'll have to wear my hair like Ivana Trump ALL the TIME.

ameliawalton.com said...

I've been giving this a lot of thought because I think that I would like to make my face products and these comments might be the thing that compels me to get on it. I too was raised in the land 'o Vaseline (and cold cream!) but like another commenter said, I'm steering clear of petroleum products. I also can't say enough good stuff about the Aura Cacia scented body oils. I use the rose oil on my skin year round, but always in the summer because it gives your legs a nice sheen.

Elle said...

I like the Simply Divine Botanicals line. (I love that the first ingredient in all her products is something like, "unconditional love & abundant gratitude," or something.) I did, when first receiving a sample of her day cream, find it a bit heavy, but then winter came & then I would put it on a damp face & then I aged these last four years & as such I think it's just-right.

Before that, I used Lush's Afterlife. Most things from the department stores & everywhere are, as everyone has already ably-articulated, just prettied-up Vaselines, some more shamelessly than others. To wit: the acclaimed & odd-smelling Eliz Arden 8-hour cream. x

Kate said...

as long as you don't rat me out to my husband, i buy an expensive cream at our coop from a line called derma e. It has astaxanthin, green tea, aloe and skin vitamins in it. My skin gets very dry and red sometimes during the winter, and then I just put Eucerin on it!

Lawyer Mom said...

Bag Balm, Becky. Bag Balm! Magically repairs chapped lips, baby-drool red chins, diaper rash, and dry skin.

Available at Walgreen's on the shelf just above your feet or your local feed store. Decorously packaged in an everlasting green tin, it looks lovely on your coffee table and stays good for years.

(Popping in after a long hiatus, happy to see you've retrieved/reclaimed your rightful blogspot status).