Guest Post: My Face at Beauty School
Here’s part two from Virginia, who is taking us inside her beauty school experience. Yesterday she talked hair and today we’re going to find out what happened when beauty experiments were launched on her face. You can read more of Virginia on her awesome blog Beauty Schooled.
Before Beauty U, I washed my face during my morning shower, slathered on some SPF moisturizer, and left it at that. And my skin was pretty awesome. I got the occasional breakout around my period and kept a tube of benzoyl peroxide on hand to dab on the odd trouble spot (not clean, I know!) but otherwise, I’ve been extremely lucky to have the kind of skin where strangers would stop me in stores and ask me what I used on my face. And be annoyed when I would say “ummm, whatever is in my shower?”
Then, on my very first night at Beauty U, Miss Jenny demonstrated the Daytime Face makeup application using me as the model. She stippled on a thick liquid foundation from the school’s motley cosmetics collection. “I don’t even know what this stuff is,” she said. “I prefer mineral makeup, but we’ll work with what they give us.” My skin looked like it had been spray-painted. I went home and scrubbed it all off the best I could with my random drugstore brand facewash—and woke up the next morning with a pile of monster zits on my forehead. Which proceeded to go forth and multiply all over my face for the next 10 months, because four nights a week, I would have to pile on yet more skanky makeup, cleansers, toners, glycolic peels, mineral masks, you name it.
My skin’s panic attack became the focus of many a class—Miss Jenny forbade me from using what we all agreed was a super questionable liquid foundation, used me to demonstrate the school’s fanciest acne-fighting facial (think masks that smelled like synthetic dog poo and led to yet more breakouts), and even tried zapping my zits weekly with glass electrodes from the high-frequency machine. This is a gadget (like this one) that uses a sinusoidal electric current of 60,000 to 200,000 Hertz frequency to vibrate the water molecules in your skin, producing heat that manufacturers claim will stimulate circulation, oxygenate the skin, and kill acne-causing bacteria. In reality, it does nothing whatsoever except buzz loudly and sting like hell when someone turns the current up too high. I was also everyone’s favorite guinea pig for extraction practice since I had so much to squeeze out. This resulted in my developing an abnormally high pain threshold for pinching obstacles courses.
And I wasn’t the only one struggling with skin troubles. While the teachers liked to attribute my breakouts to my infrequent hair washing, frequent phone use, and not changing my pillow cases often enough, it was a widely accepted fact among the students that the process of learning professional skincare would result in a period of weeks or even months of hardcore skin rebellion. “We’ve all been there,” the senior students would say as they painted the synthetic dog poo mask on my face. “You’ll get better once you can practice on real clients instead of each other.”
Stay tuned for part three tomorrow!