Looking less tired (with many children and not enough sleep), continued

I’m not saying that having five children has left me looking aged and exhausted.   But coincidentally, in 2020, after having five children in 11 years, I did wonder why my face looked quite…so…troubling. 

Improved my life in all areas except, perhaps, my face

And in general I’m happy to just slap on a bit of this tinted moisturizer or the best CC cream out there and hope for the best but somehow the combination of many children, the pandemic and a repatriation did have what felt like some kind of serious impact on my face. I looked, well, a bit cross and tired.

All that to say, this is a post about skincare and here are my hard-won discoveries.

Everyone else is having botox

I spent a significant amount of time wondering about Botox to stop me looking so cross. Then I went to talk to an aesthetician, hypothetically, about Botox and about 33 seconds later I was having Botox to iron out my perma-frown. 

This is not the type of blog to show before and after photos. Instead I will include some photos of the things that preceded my skin related downfall. Evidence 1: multiple house moves

Honestly it felt like I went to an aesthetician and asked about the ethics of having a leg wax. As she told me with absolute certainty, everyone else is having Botox. So in the name of scientific discovery (and definitely not vanity) I gave it a whirl. 

It absolutely made me look a bit less grumpy for a while (and maybe even feel a bit less grumpy, while unable to frown?) – but it also was just a little bit disconcerting, and on occasion quite limiting, not being able to fully convey my feelings of deep disapproval in one swift scowl. 

More skin trauma: multiple flights with small children during a pandemic

Also, I think the point of Botox and looking surprisingly refreshed, is probably that you don’t tell people that you’ve had Botox, but I felt compelled to tell anyone who mentioned anything about my appearance that I HAD SOME BOTOX which is, as I soon established, awkward for everyone involved. 

I haven’t done that again. Instead…

La Roche-Posay cicaplast is a miracle

…Instead, I joined a private Facebook group that has 129,000 group members – all of whom know much, much more about skincare than I could ever understand. And what I have gleaned from this group is mostly that all their myriad collective knowledge comes to one heady discovery: 

La Roche Posay cicaplast, cure all and modern miracle

Now I definitely don’t have sensitive skin but also if I use pretty much any product on my skin I seem to have some kind of horrible reaction (I’m looking at you, touché eclat, Weleda skin food). However, La Roche-Posay Cicaplast (LRP cicaplast as my NBF Facebook fellow group members refer to it) is some kind of miracle sent to make your skin softer/glowier/younger/overall BETTER. 

Also, LRP was a saviour during my slightly early energetic approach to retinol use during which I gave myself a casual chemical burn. The aesthetician did direct me to start retinol use slowly, 2-3 times a week, but I was feeling pretty confident at this point and went straight to daily use. Let’s just say I would definitely not recommend this level of conviction in the future. 

Once or twice a week retinol, though, quite the revelation. And combined with another La Roche Posay nightly classic:

Please forgive this grainy image. Enough to demonstrate that this comes with the added benefit of a pump dispenser for the extra lazy/exhausted amongst us

This is a longer post about skincare than I’d imagined. 

I can’t write about skin without a quick sidebar to The Best CC cream by Erborian. Erborian is a Korean-French skincare company which, obviously, means that it must be good. Anyway this CC cream goes on as a white dewy moisturizer and adapts to match your skin tone in a sort of glorious magic-meets-science mashup. It leaves your skin tone looking more even, less haggard, even, dare I say it, more like you haven’t just had five children. Ten out of ten, five stars, would recommend to a friend. I am recommending to a friend!

Final nail in the coffin for my skin: many children, on many modes of transport that can cause potential injury

Ok. That’s a lot of skincare chat. My FB skincare group would be proud of me. 



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