In Real Simple magazine, there is a cute section on what would you do with $100 windfall. I got to experience this firsthand because after a week of left hand itching I received a refund check from my graduate school alma mater for $100. I have no clue as to why I got it since I graduated eight years ago, but I chose not to worry. I decided to spend my extra dough on my skin winterization plan. I have extremely dry and very sensitive skin. In fact, most liquid cleansers, body washes and hand soaps break me out in the most unattractive hives, followed by peeling. I also have a very unique T-zone situation. My T-zone (forehead and nose) is extremely dry while my cheeks can get a little oily especially in the summer.
I first went to what was once the best deal ever—a luxurious 45-minute hot stone pedicure complete with glass of good enough wine for $35. However, in my two-month absence (vacation, Sandy and whatnot) something happened. The technician usually rubbed my calves, arches and heels with the hot stones to practically turned my feet into butter. No longer. I got a calf rub, a foot scrub and was sent on my merry way. I did complain and I was told it was because they thought I was a Groupon user. Umm…okay. Granted I discovered the spot through a Groupon, but I subsequently became a regular. As a result of my displeasure and lack of wine I was given a discount with a price of $25.
Due to my sensitive skin, I am a Kiehls devotee. I received my annual Kiehls cash. The company is quite stingy with discounts, so I view these things like gold. They do have a nice recycling policy, which almost makes it fair. I switched my daily facial routine to their Ultra Moisturizer line (face wash, day moisturizer and night cream).
Here is the rest of my plan to keep my cold parched skin as supple as possible:
One of my short-term life goals is to own a Clarisonic. However, my aunt got me a Neutrogena microdermabrasion tool that works phenomenally well in the interim. I used it twice a week to slough off the dry skin
I usually do a Lush Oatifix masque once a week for added moisture
Finally, I apply a little shea butter to my T-zone daily to prevent flakes. I foolishly used to buy the L’Occitane’s travel Pure Shea Butter for this purpose because I like the consistency. However, I realized that I could buy pure solid Shea Butter at the Beauty Supply for $7 and whip it myself
I have the driest feet. My beloved Suave Cocoa Butter with Shea lotion does absolutely nothing to save them from the dreaded ash. I discovered Suave because I started buying Jergens with Shea Butter lotion. I truly believe Shea Butter is my savior. However, Suave, in its role as the Jean Nate of beauty products, soon came up with a similar product that to me is better than its pricier counterpart
I need to scrub them to death. This is where Lush’s Porridge soap scrub comes into play. As many have noted, it can be extremely messy, so remember to scrub in a confined area as the little flakes of oats can get everywhere
Finally I pile on the Burt’s Bees Coconut feet cream before bed. It was my first guess at a foot cream and the best choice ever. They suggest wearing with socks, but I have a tendency to kick socks off. If you apply any other time, it makes your feet way too slippery for shoes
I have gone through every product line, every formula, every price point. My hands actually crack and peel from dryness. It doesn’t help that I wash them constantly. I really wanted something that would only need application a few times a day. My best discovery was another accident—GoldBond Ultimate Intensive Healing Cream. It was on sale at CVS and I liked the 7 moisturizers tagline. I love it. I apply only thrice a day unlike other formulas, which seemed to require use after every washing
That’s my strategy. The less itching the better.