Vanity Porn: Beautiful Skin Care, Inside and Out

glam vanity featuring la prairie, estee lauder, la mer, cle de peau, sephora, show beauty

 

What does your vanity say about you? Are you a glamour girl, a cerebral minimalist, or a bit of a rocker? Do you love faceted bottles and anything gilded? Or is your weakness florals and botanicals, like a garden of beauty?

If my vanity says anything about me (other than the fact that I’ve got a serious product addiction), it’s probably that I’m a sucker for packaging. Give me crystal facets, a pretty floral print, or the most sublimely simple tub in a matte finish — I love it all. I mean, I love my prescription tretinoin for the collagen it builds in my skin, but I have to admit, it does make me sad that it’s in a nondescript tube. The aesthete in me dies a little every time I take it out to use it.

After all, don’t we all want and need a little beauty in our everyday beauty routine? I believe it helps lower stress levels (the root of many a premature aging symptom) and makes what can get somewhat tiresome, day in and day out, a little more enjoyable.

So just for fun, I put together some vanity porn — different vanity setups to represent the various facets of my aesthetic. I’m curious to see which one you’ll most relate to.

 

The Minimalist

minimalist vanity featuring blithe pressed serum, osea, verso, revive, amorepacific, time revolution

 

At heart, I often feel like a minimalist. My natural tendency in fashion leans more minimal and structural. And yet, there’s a part of me that wants to be a bit more boho at times and at other times, more girly. But in the end, I’m the most comfortable when I look more streamlined.

While my vanity usually doesn’t look this minimalist, I love the clean lines of all of the products of  Korean brand Blithe. Their Pressed Serum in Tundra Chaga, at first, looked a bit weird — it’s brown, for one, and thick and “spongey,” if that makes sense. You really need that spatula to scoop it out properly. But as it melts into your skin, it’s like a revelation. All those nourishing antioxidant oils, like olive and argan, nourish your skin, but without any oily or greasy finish. In fact, the pressed serum is cooling to the touch and absorbs quickly. The medicinal qualities of the chaga mushroom itself are preserved because it’s cold-pressed, not heated. Chaga mushrooms are considered a superfood — it’s full of a variety of antioxidants (different antioxidants neutralize free radicals differently, so it’s always better to layer your antioxidants), polyphenols and the most powerful antioxidant enzyme, Superoxide Dismutase (SOD).

I liked to use the Pressed Serum as a day mask, letting it sink in for about 15 minutes before layering on my go-to moisturizer, which is …

 

The Glamour Girl

glam vanity featuring la prairie, estee lauder, la mer, cle de peau, sephora, show beauty

 

Estée Lauder Re-Nutriv Ultimate Diamond Transformative Energy Creme.

Now, I know this is a $360 cream. I could never personally afford this, but I received it as a sample while working at my previous editor gig. I have to say, the faceted tub is GORGEOUS. And it’s crazy heavy; it’s a real work of art. But it’s not just the packaging — the cream itself, infused with a rare black diamond truffle extract, is heaven. It goes on velvety, not slippery, like other creams with way too much dimethicone or other silicone derivative. It grips my foundation, making it the perfect primer. And the tub lasted me almost a year.

Needless to say, the Diamond Energy Creme makes the glamour girl in me go crazy, just looking at the gorgeousness on my vanity. It paired quite nicely with La Mer’s most exclusive serum, Genaissance De La Mer, another sample I was lucky enough to try out. It’s an amazingly silky-velvety serum in a sculptural flacon with a highly concentrated version of the brand’s Miracle Broth. Any time my skin needs extra pampering, I turn to La Mer, whether it’s the iconic Créme De La Mer or The Intensive Revitalizing Day Mask (the latter of which got me hooked on the whole day mask step of my routine).

Another line that feeds the glamour girl in me is Show Beauty, created by billionaire heiress Tamar Ecclestone. The hair care line is beautifully packaged in faceted glass-topped bottles, and the standout, Premiere Working Texture Spray, is my go-to for perfectly tousled, beachy hair.

 

The Rocker

goth vanity featuring boscia, kat von d, nars, nars and steven klein, paddywax, nirvana, peter thomas roth

 

I think it’s my penchant for perpetually tousled, beachy, “undone” hair (it’s sort of my default since I’m too lazy and/or unskilled to do much else with my hair) that gives me a rocker edge. While I have to admit rocker is probably the weakest aspect of my aesthetic, I have gone through a rocker phase in my fashion evolution, complete with studded boots and leather(ette) pants. I love Kat von D makeup, not so much because I relate to her aesthetic, but because her stuff is quality. My go-to liquid liner is the Tattoo Liner — it’s something I buy in bulk and no other liquid liner I’ve tried stays on and stays put for as long as hers does.

I’m also a huge fan of NARS — the Kohliner is my go-to pencil liner, again a smudge-free, budge-free holy grail product for me. They’ve also got amazing lip glosses and eye shadows that I find myself turning to again and again.

 

The Girly Girl

girly vanity featuring sk-ii, estee lauder, jeju blossom, tarte, mac, sephora

 

Which brings me to the last, but not least, aspect of my aesthetic: the girly me. I love me a floral print, a pretty botanical, and I have a serious weakness for pink. (I blame it on my second grade best friend, who asked me a question I had never thought of before: What’s your favorite color? I wasn’t sure, so when she said hers was pink, I automatically said, Mine too! I think it’s just psychologically stuck with me ever since.)

So even though I can’t wear bright poppy lips and that gorgeous palette from M.A.C’s collaboration with Chinese designer Guo Pei holds the worst face powder ever, I still keep them on my vanity, just to make me smile a little as I pat, pat, pat away.

After all, what’s a beauty ritual without a little beauty to brighten things up?

 

 

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9 thoughts on “Vanity Porn: Beautiful Skin Care, Inside and Out

    • AnnaMPark says:

      Haha, clearly you’re a girly girl, Angela! I can’t decide which I like best — it’s like deciding what my personal fashion style is. Some days you feel feminine, some days rocker. It changes by the season!

      Liked by 1 person

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