Category Archives: Beauty

How Much Did I Spend on Beauty in 2015?

Inspired by last week’s Wall Street Journal article “The High Price of Beauty: 4 Women Reveal Their Annual Costs,” I wanted to add up my 2015 so-called beauty costs to see if I’m as ridiculous as these women who spend around $20k average of their looks every year (and that isn’t even counting clothing!)

Even though that amount sounds crazy, beauty-related costs do add up. Some of them can be avoided (no one “needs” to visit an expensive salon to have their hair done every month), but some are just part of what it costs to be a woman with a successful career. As the resident hot mess who tries to play dress up as an executive, I feel at this stage of my life/career/et al, I should be investing more in looking the part. For better or worse I look rather young for my age, which means less respect from anyone who is older – or younger – but more hope that I’ll age gracefully. There’s that.

The women interviewed in the WSJ are certainly well enough to do that these expenses are just part of their lives. They’re all New York City women, and NY is an expensive place to fit in. Ranging from mid 30s to late 40s, these women shell out hundreds upon hundreds of dollars for facial treatments, intravenous vitamin therapy, regular blow drys, yoga, hair styles, skin-friendly juices, serums, energy healing (not sure how this is beauty related, but it’s in their calculations) — and for each of them the total annual cost ranges from $10k – $20k. That’s a lot of ca-ching for something so superficial (sans the yoga and health club memberships, which I don’t think should count towards “beauty” but whatever, to be fair I’ll include my health stuff as well so the numbers match up.)

My 2015 Beauty Costs ($5,672)

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$6000 a year is too much to spend on beauty, but at least it’s not $20,000. My total amount is a little wonky as I’m including these diet bets I’m doing – where I’m betting on my weight loss, and theoretically a chunk of that can be earned back if I drop 20lbs in the next 4 months, so that isn’t real spending. It also includes the second payment for my braces, and about $212 spent on personal training towards the end of the year.

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Really, my worst spending comes in the form of food and shopping (I put makeup into the ‘personal care’ category. I’m going to whip up another post on my 2015 spending because I’m ashamed of it, and maybe that shame will make me not spend as much this year (spoiler: my annual spending was ~ $50k last year.)

The Beauty Industry and My 30 Something Face

Vain as I am, I’ve been the type to roll my eyes at my mother who spends gobs of money on beauty products, picking up the latest serum or cream from any sales person she comes in contact with. Yet turning 30 has me wanting to follow suit. What are those? Fine lines in my forehead etched from years of being a sarcastic worry wort? And, holy crap, I see the very start of crows feet coming on at the corners of my eyes – can’t I just stop them now? Isn’t there some cream out there that will make my skin look 20 when I’m 95?

Ok, so the beauty industry plays on these feelings which are a natural part of aging. We live in a society that considers you over the hill once you’ve passed 25 (thanks Hollywood) if you’re a woman, so of course we’ll do anything to fit the part. The other day, my boss told me that I looked “tired” after I had actually a fairly good night’s rest. That isn’t a good sign. Was it my under eye bags? My pale, thinning skin? Was I going to look more tired every single day because I’m getting older? Ugh!

Aging is so strange as a woman. As a man, you undoubtedly grow into your best self through the years. Women have these strange expectations to be both old and young at the same time, especially if you work in business. I haven’t figured out how to properly address this yet. On one hand, people tell me I still look so young – and that’s a good thing (I know other women my age who certainly look older) but then I also feel like in order to be taken seriously in the work world I need to look older. I don’t know, maybe paint a few more wrinkles on my face, dye my hair silver grey and cover it up with a bad blonde dye job to be obviously old enough to make a valid point.

Before you all scold me for how BATSHIT CRAZY this list is, please remember that I get my hair cut four times a year and with the exception of one whim a year ago where I went ombre, I do not dye my hair anymore, so that’s significant savings in terms of personal care. You won’t find me at a spa. I drive a used car I paid cash for. I’m not exactly living an expensive lifestyle. Yes, I could invest that savings, but would that make my face look better?

My Favorite Beauty Products and Spending Too Much on Them…

1. Clarisonic Mia 2 ($149 kit)

I bought this $149 face brush for myself for my 31st birthday. Yes, it’s an electronic face brush that supposedly cleans 6x better than if you were doing it yourself. I’m not sure I believe that, but I do know that I’m the type of person who sucks at keeping up a routine and tends to fall asleep with a full face of makeup on. That can’t be good. What I like most about the Mia is how fast it is to get a good thorough clean across your entire face in 60 seconds plus a few extra for putting the soap on your face with some water first. It has a timer that gives you 20 seconds for your forehead, 20 for your chin and nose, and 10 for each cheeks, and then you’re done. Efficiency to inspire routine as a person who doesn’t do routine is good.

In the one week of owning my Clarisonic I’ve noticed an improvement in my skin overall. However, initially I started out using the soap that came with my package from Sephora — Philosophy “Purity” — and it made my skin break out terribly. I thought it was the Clarisonic doing that since I read a bunch of reviews talking about this “purge” that happens for the first few weeks (and subsequent articles about how the purge concept is bullshit and your skin is just telling you STOP DESTROYING ME.) In any case, as soon as I switched to a less harsh face wash my skin calmed down, phew. But do I really need to spend $149 on a FACE BRUSH? Whatever, it was my birthday.

2. Origin’s Cheeks and Balances Soap ($12)

Actually, I had this lying around in a bag of random face soaps and such that I’ve picked up throughout the years (I think it came part of a discount set so I didn’t actually pay $12 for it yet.) Switching from Purity to Cheeks and Balances made ALL THE DIFFERENCE. After a few days of my Clarisonic paired with Cheeks and Balances my face feels much better. I also have noticed that anything I put on after washing with these two products do seep in better, meaning that I need to use less of the more expensive stuff that comes after cleaning to make my face look not as bad as it would look otherwise.

3. Ole Hendrickson Truth Serum Vitamin C Collegen Booster ($48)

So I didn’t actually pay $48 for this yet. It came as part of my Clarisonic kit in a mini form and I’ve been using it every morning. I’m not sure if it does anything but it has 4.5 stars on Sephora so it must be good, amirite? It smells good anyway. It is supposed to support natural collagen production to brighten and minimize fine wrinkles caused from free radical damage, yada yada. Man, if only I worked in marketing for the beauty industry… anyway… it uses orange extract, grapefruit extract, rose hip seed extract, sodium ascorbic phosphate and ester-c.  Hey, anything to make me look not that old yet. I probably will never pay the full $48 for this product, it is usually available on Sephora.com as part of a set and you don’t need to use that much everyday. I figure it should last 3 months with regular use.

4. Ole Hendrickson Pure Truth Youth Activating Oil ($48)

Not sold on this one yet, but I actually purchased it mid last year on a whim of feeling old an a sales person convincing me this was great for people who don’t have old skin yet but want to protect skin from getting old (oh god I’m turning into my mother.) This is pretty much straight up rose hips oil, which, according to the brand, is a good source of active vitamin A and vitamin C. I prefer using the Truth Serum more than this… directions from brand say BUY BOTH and use them after each other, but the oil is kind of, well, oily, and I prefer the serum which is stickier. I am going to try both layered to see if they make any sort of difference. I wonder if Rosehip Seed Oil, Tangerine Peel Oil, Lemongrass Oil, Tocopherol (Natural Vitamin E) would cost $45 if I buy them from a farmer.

5. Origins GinZing Energy Booster Moisturizer ($26.50)

What’s that smell? Is it a delicious citrusy fruit basket? Why no sir, it’s just my moisturizer. I’m actually mildly in love with this product. I’ve tried a ton of moisturizers and usually stop using them because they smell like a mix of plastic and ass and texture-wise feel more like watered down chalk mixed with elmers glue, so when I say I like a moisturizer it means an awful lot. This moisturizer doesn’t have SPF anything though, which sucks but is probably why it doesn’t have the consistency or smell I hate, so it means I need to buy yet ANOTHER product with sunscreen in it to actually use the most important part of an aging lady’s beauty routine. Oh well. I like this stuff. I just splurged on a set (self hanukah gift, what?) that has the GinZing eye cream in it as well as two other products that look industry and MORE OF THIS FABULOUS MOISTURIZER for $51 (see: best of both world’s set)

6. Origins Night a Mins High Potency Skin Cream ($41)

I had a sample of this stuff and it seemed to help my face overnight, but I wasn’t about to pay $41 for it on its own. Luckily Origin’s marketers were kind to me and presented the “Best of Both World’s” set for $51 (which sold out about two hours after I purchased it at Macys.com, might still be available in store) – I’m looking forward to using this every night before my moisturizer to see if it provides “naturally radiant morning skin.” #nomoretiredface — eh, whatever, I never go to the spa, I can pamper myself a little at home, right?

7. PM Moisturizer: Cereve PM Facial Moisturizing Lotion ($12)

This is probably my only practical purchase of the bunch. Recommended to me from a dermatologist, the PM moisturizer isn’t fancy or smelltastical but it does its job. I wake up with a face that feels soft as butta. Love it. I should probably give up on the Origins splurges and just use Cereve’s daytime moisturizer (which has some SPF in it) but it does not make me smell like a fruit, and where’s the fun in that?

8. Neutrogena Rapid Repair Night Moisturizer ($21.99)

#becausevanity — oh god, wrinkles. Here they come. Every dermatologist on the web says USE RETINOL to fix existing wrinkles if you don’t want to go all Botox on your face. I don’t use this every day because it BURNS but pain is beauty so I’m trying it out on a fairly regular basis. Nothing noticeable yet but I might as well use the product up until its gone or my skin has melted off. Either way.

Stuff I Am Trying Out Soon Because I’m Crazy

9. Black Tea Age-Delay Instant Infusion Treatment Toner ($48)

This stuff is supposed to help boost overall moisturizers and make your face look EVEN YOUNGER. I don’t know. Toner. Are you a marketers creation? Reviews say this stuff evens out dark spots and such. Everyone on Sephora.com loves it, I must have it. Actually, I bought this because the reviews convinced me… it’s worth it to tone with this product before moisturizer. My skin is still bumpy and red, so I’d like something that will make me appear smooth like a baby’s butt. Yes, I want my face to resemble a baby’s bottom, so sue me.

10. Origins GinZing Eye Cream ($26.50)

Bought this as part of that $51 gift set at Macys w/ the Night a Mins, more of my fav moisturizer and an overnight mask. It won’t be the full size but how much eye cream does one really need? Looking forward to trying it out. I’ll probably continue picking it up in gift sets that offer it vs ever paying $26 for normal eye cream – but who knows, a bit more crows feet and I’ll be investing in baby foreskin to keep my eye creases at bay (btw, I only know this is a thing because my mom either bought or almost bought a product which includes baby foreskin as its magic ingredient. And yes, it is a thing. And, Ew.)

11. Origins GinZing Facial Scrub Cleanser ($19.50)

Because some days you need a little extra scrub. The Clarisonic is theoretically not an exfoliator and my blackheads won’t quit. Maybe this stuff will help. Maybe I will just have more excuses to put fresh citrusy smells near my nose. Either way, I’m investing in this because Cheeks and Balances is a good daily cleanser but a few times a week my face, I think, needs a little deeper scrubbing.

Ok, so I haven’t actually paid full price for all of these items due to gift sets, but the total value/cost to continue this regime would be… drumroll please… 

$330 every 3 months (not counting the $149 clarisonic mia purchase, but counting a replacement brush needed for it also every 3 months.)

So that’s about $100 a month – which really isn’t that bad (she tells herself trying to rationalize spending $100 a month ON HER FACE THAT IS GOING TO GET OLD ANYWAY.)

I mean, I’m clearly not the only person who spends money on this stuff, so is it that bad? I don’t need all of it, but being an adult now I’m trying to get into routines and pampering myself for a few minutes a day in between working and sleeping seems like a reasonable thing to do. When I put $100 in the market one day and it goes down to nothing the next, I don’t get a smoother face, that’s for sure. #vanitywinsagain

I’m still investing over $4000 a month so I don’t feel that bad about these splurges. But being a girl is expensive, women should be paid more than men overall, not less!

 

Invisalign investment: Splurging on Straighter Teeth

In middle school I was a full-on metal mouth. Well, I had braces on my upper teeth but for some reason never had them on my lower. My parent’s insurance covered the costs and I hated every minute of it. Even with the braces I still had these giant gaps between my small teeth. The second I got the braces off the last thing I wanted to was wear a retainer every night. So I didn’t. And my teeth decided to return to their earlier position or something else entirely.

Fast forward into the future and I’m a 30 year old with crooked, gappy teeth. I wasn’t set on spending money on adult braces for cosmetic purposes, but on a recent dentist visit it was explained to me that my overbite was actually causing my lower teeth to chip, and the gaps in my teeth were causing food to get stuck and my gums to wear down. Since it was now also a medical issue I decided to start seriously investigating Invisalign as an option to straighten things out a bit. Continue reading

Considering Liposuction

Ok, before the personal finance sphere has a fiscal conniption, let me remind you that not all personal finance bloggers are frugalistas. At 30, I’ve saved up nearly $250k, and that’s with occasional bursts of poor or otherwise non-rational financial decision making.

I don’t usually spend a lot of money on things, except designer jeans. I bought my car used with cash, and while it’s nice enough it’s no BMW. I live with two roommates and spend $650 a month on rent when I could easily spend $1500 or more on a 1br, which most people my age making my salary ($110k) would. So I don’t really spend a lot all things considered.

When I look back on what I have spent on in my life, one of the biggest expenditures outside of my car and computer has been laser hair removal. With PCOS, my hairy beast-like nature was hurting my quality of life. It was really bad. I shaved constantly and always had dark, five o’clock shadows everywhere. The hair made a total mess in my bathroom. It was just gross. So I splurged on $5000 for unlimited laser hair removal. Eventually (recently) the place sold and I no longer have unlimited sessions, but I definitely got my monies worth. My life has improved significantly. I still have some hairs here and there, but nothing like what I had in the past. My relationship is better. Everything is better. Best $5000 I’ve ever spent. Continue reading

“Unlimited” Laser Hair Removal No Longer

Throughout my life, I’ve been a naturally hairy person. Shaving was useless as it just left ingrown hairs and dark stubble. I honestly could never feel beautiful or desirable with the dark hair all over my body. Even my boyfriend, who is the least superficial person on earth, would not want to touch me a day after I had shaved because of the hair on my legs. My bathroom, shared with a roommate, would always be covered in hair from my various attempts to rid myself of human fur. Enough was enough.

So a few years ago I started looking for a permanent solution. Lucky for me, I was an ideal candidate for laser hair removal – pale skin, dark hair. It wasn’t cheap and it sounded frightening, so I spent a lot of time researching different treatments, lasers and pricing options. I went to probably about six different consultations. For starters, I paid $1800 for a package of six treatments for my face, because due to PCOS I had thick disgusting chin hairs and sideburns that I would spend every second of my life tweezing. Then, when my face didn’t explode from the first few treatments, I decided to get serious. I wanted as much of my body hair gone as possible.

At one consultation, where I paid for a single bikini treatment, the nurse started to upsell me on multiple treatments packages, which that one treatment could be applied to. I gave her the run down of everything I wanted lasered. Which was pretty much, everything:

  • Face
  • Behind the Neck
  • Armpits
  • Arms
  • Lower Back
  • Stomach
  • Bikini Area (Let’s leave a landing strip, thank you)
  • Legs
  • Toes 

Yes, I think that is just about everywhere person can possibly have hair, with the exception of her head. She added up the cost for six treatments per area, and filled me in on a little secret — another spa, where she worked part time, had an amazing deal for laser hair removal. Unlimited treatments in 90 minute sessions for $4500. While $4500 isn’t cheap, my total for six sessions in each of my planned areas was going to be something like $7000. Unlimited. Sounded. Unlimitedly awesome. I knew that laser hair removal was designed to reduce, not fully get rid of body hair, but from what I’ve read six treatments really wouldn’t be enough to make a serious dent. I liked the idea of being able to keep getting hair removed until it was gone for good.

So I splurged. It was my biggest purchase yet outside of my then $8k car. I bought “Unlimited Hair Removal” in March of 2011. I always knew that I was risking the spa going out of business in this purchase, but I hoped I could get the value out of the $4.5k before that time came. I had to stick to a very strict visit plan. I couldn’t hit all the areas each visit, and the treatments had to be 6-8 weeks apart, so that resulted in 1-2 visits per month to a spa about an hour away from my house, across a toll bridge. It was kind of a pain to get there, but the deal was worth it. I couldn’t find anything else remotely close to it, and the spa seemed actually reputable. I was so excited about the journey to becoming hair free as I made my way in for my first appointment.

Getting your body zapped with a laser is not fun. They say it is going to feel like a rubber band snapping against your skin but that is a lie. Basically every hair follicle shot by the laser gets so hot that it explodes under your skin and feels like tiny shards of hot glass. Early on in treatments, at least for the first six treatments, there are a lot of hairs each zap gets at a time. This is good because it goes faster, but when doing areas like the legs that are large, or the bikini that are extremely sensitive, the pain can be intense. I would use numbing creme for my bikini and face but that just helped minimize the shock. Trust me, it hurt. And each time they increased the strength of the laser, so it hurt more. 90 minutes straight of this is torture. But worth it.

Since it’s dangerous to have laser treatments when you are tan at all, I would take the summers off from going in for treatments, figuring that I had, well, “unlimited” treatments forever, I could wait. Then, this summer, I got a letter from the spa’s doctor saying “you are at the clinical endpoint of your treatments, you cannot come in anymore.” Wait a second. I was like, WTF? Unlimited doesn’t mean six months after I go in for a treatment you randomly decide that I’m done. Granted, some areas have seen serious improvement (my legs, while they still have a few strands of hair here and there, are a billion times better than they were when I started) but others are still a bit patchy (my armpits and bikini, which I figured would take just a lot more treatments, but again, I had an unlimited pass, so eventually all the hair would be gone.)

I wrote a nastygram to the company saying that it’s ridiculous they say I’m at the medical endpoint of my treatment because I’m treating multiple areas of my body and it’s impossible for them all to magically have the same medical endpoint. Also, my nurse, at my last session, said nothing about being close to a medical endpoint, which I kind of assumed would be told to me before the treatment was over (“oh, yea, this area only needs one more treatment and you’re done.”) But the nurses there constantly told me stories of women who would come in for years for treatments, if hair started to grow again, they would just zap it. That was the magic of this deal, which really was too good to be true.

In response to my nastygram, the assistant wrote me back saying, contrary to the note I received, that this package had been discontinued. Now, that really got me boiling, because you can’t discontinue something that I bought with a signed contract for unlimited treatments. A few more nastygrams later, which threatened bad online reviews and legal action, they offered two dates when I could come in and meet with their doctor (who also owns the business) so he could look over my history and current progress to determine if I needed more treatments. This was a pain in the ass because the doctor was only available in the middle of the work week, and I live an hour away from the clinic, but I figured once I showed the doctor my armpits and some other areas that clearly still need treatment he’d be reasonable.

Unfortunately, when I came in, the doctor told me the REAL story – they were selling the business. In three days. And they couldn’t tell anyone about it. So… I was pretty much SOL. I negotiated one more 90 minute treatment the next day in the late afternoon, which required traveling a 2 hour trip to the spa that normally takes 1 hour because of traffic. I really couldn’t do anything other than that. Funny enough, the nurse who first recommended me this deal that I met at the other spa in 2011, who had left this spa for a while, was randomly back working there one day a week, and she was the only nurse with an appointment to fit me in. So it was like coming full circle.

As she zapped me I thought about how glad I was that, despite not having a truly unlimited deal, that I was able to have about 10-12 treatments per area for $4500, which really would have cost something like $10k-$15k had I paid separately. It was still very much a worthwhile deal, I’m just bummed that my “unlimited” treatments only lasted for two years. Had I been smarter, I would have not taken the summers off, and made appointments more frequently, at the risk they would sell or go out of business.

 

 

At 27, I Purchased My First “Anti-Wrinkle Cream”

“What are those… those… red creases in my forehead?,” I silently scream to myself as I study my aging face in the mirror, reflexively squeezing my forehead flesh in a worried expression making the thin lines even more pronounced. “Since when did I have wrinkles?” I’m 27 and my face shows it. I’m not sure how a 27 year old face is supposed to look, but I do know that my friends who are in their 30s look older in a way that makes them look like actual adults, and that suddenly people in their 40s don’t seem all that much older than people in their 30s to me. Meanwhile, my 27-year-old face is, well, it’s changing. It’s slowly but surely turning 30.

I remember about five years ago when I had caught my reflection in the bathroom at some random party after drinking one too many glasses of wine, and I didn’t recognize myself. I’ve spent far too many hours of my life looking in the mirror, either slathering my face with makeup or watching tears fall down my cheeks during a depressive outburst, so it was terrifying not to recognize my face. I look old, I thought. And then I was maybe 20 or 21…

There was a time when I thought it was silly to spend money on anything to keep yourself looking youthful, but I’m beginning to understand the trend. In a report by iData Research, a leading authority in pharmaceutical market research, the market for Botox injections is expected grow to an estimated $543 million by 2017. Clearly, those pharma companies know how to prick us in our sore spots.

While I’m not quite ready for botox, the other day I did find myself, for the first time in my life, staring at the aisle of overpriced wrinkle reduction creams and products designed to make you look youthful on my latest trip to the drugstore. Every skincare line offers some retinol product that promises “RESULTS.” After staring at the selection for a good half an hour, I went with a Neutrogena wrinkle cream product that set me back $23, more because I trust the brand (go marketing) than the label that said “100% of women noticed results in one week.”

From a personal finance perspective, this has me worried. Surely I can let my face age naturally, I can stay out of the sun from this point on (though the damage has, to a large extend, already been done) and just accept that I’m getting older… or, I can do what many other women do, and spend somewhere between too much and a ridiculous amount of money on attempting to look young forever.

My mother, who is in her late 50s, complains how she doesn’t have the money to spend on Botox… $600+ for a few small areas, twice a year, but she still spends (likely) nearly that much in various creams and sessions with her dermatologist, even without the overpriced muscle-freezing injections. Damn, it’s expensive being a woman. It seems the options are to either marry rich and look young forever, or just accept that one day you will look in the mirror, and you will have to look a lot deeper into your eyes to see any evidence the girl you once were.

I’m Taking the $4k Hair-Free Plunge: Why Laser Hair Removal is (Hopefully) Worth The Investment

So long $4k. $4.5k to be exact. I’m splurging on something that is (after a lot of pain) going to make me a much happier person. That thing is Laser Hair Removal. And it’s something that I’ve been wanting to fully invest in for a long time.

Let me preface this post by saying that I’ve already had some laser hair removal done. I’ve probably spend $2k already on 8 treatments for my face, 5 treatments for my underarm and one for my bikini area. For those of you who don’t know, laser hair removal requires multiple sessions because your hair grows in phases. Generally speaking people need 5-10 sessions per area to have most of the hair removed permanently.

Laser Hair Removal is extremely expensive, and it’s not a sure bet. My hormonal issues (PCOS) means that while LHR will kill hair currently growing, new hair might decide to pop up at any time. Still, I’ve found Laser Hair Removal a worthwhile investment so far, and I’m ready to invest in what it takes to go completely hair free. For some people who aren’t that hairy, it might not be worth it. But… TMI… I’m a hairy beast. And the truth is that my hair doesn’t just bother me, it hurts my relationship with others. As my hair grows back so quickly, it hurts intimacy with my boyfriend. He just doesn’t want to touch me at all if my legs are the least bit prickly. Meanwhile, having to shave all the dark hair frequently means a mess in the bathroom that takes a long time to clean up. And don’t get me started on Nair…

So I’ve done my research. I’ve made spreadsheets with the cost of getting each body part cleared of hair. Every time I added up the costs, even with the 40% off discounts that some of the local places run twice a year, it would still cost me $10k to get close to the amount of LHR I’d need. And then hair might still grow back, and it would be an unfinished job. I didn’t want a $10k unfinished job.

A year ago I found a place that’s about an hour drive away that offers Unlimited Laser Hair Removal. It seems almost too good to be true, but it’s also not all that cheap. I went to visit for a consultation (I actually met the nurse at another medspa in the city that was charging a lot more for the same equipment) and the place seemed clean, reputable, and has been around for a while. It uses an Alexandrite laser which is the right kind for my light skin and dark hair. So I’m game.

Still, it’s tough to plunk down $4k on anything. After all, I spent $7k on my car and that was, well, my CAR. I just figure if i’m going to invest in laser hair removal I might as well do it sooner than later — the value comes from being hair free for a long time, not waiting until I’m old enough to afford it. And, heck, I am old enough to afford it. I saved a lot of money last year, I deserve to “treat” myself.

And by treat myself, I mean TORTURE myself. Don’t let anyone convince you otherwise, laser hair removal is extremely painful. I had my bikini area done with it to test it out and… YIKES. Even with numbing cream it hurt. Well, the worst part was my inner thighs and around back. I cringe at the thought of all the pain I will endure, over and over again, to be hair free. But today I don’t feel the pain and my face is a lot smoother than it was a year ago (yea, yea, yea PCOS makes me have a beard, ugh.) I know I will be a much happier person when I go hair free. And that, my friends, is worth $4k.

Botox Bail Out

Every once in a while I find an article or study that makes me embarrassed to be human. At one point in our evolution we would have given an arm and a leg to be able to feed ourselves and our families for the day. These days, we equate wrinkles to starvation. Even with stocks down and job losses up, vanity beats out frugality.

According to a new study, nearly three out of four plastic surgeons reported that demand has increased or held steady for minimally invasive procedures, including the Botox antiwrinkle drug, dermal fillers used to plump up lips and smile lines, and skin-smoothing chemical peels, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, a professional group representing 6,700 surgeons.


Case in point:

“Maralyn Burr of Omaha, Neb., in June lost her job as a district sales manager for bookstore chain Borders Group Inc. Ms. Burr, who is $140,000 in debt from her 22-year-old daughter’s musical education, says she has slashed spending and all but stopped eating out. But she hasn’t given up her Restylane and Botox injections. “It’s like comfort food,” she says.” – Keeping Up Appearances in a Downturn, Wall Street Journal 

Doesn’t that make you just a little sad to be human?