THE school formal is nine days away.
When I say THE, I’m talking about the only school formal that’s causing a kerfuffle in the SY household … Miss SY’s school formal, that’s what.
There is a trend at many schools to now hold the Year 12 formal earlier in the year. Something I’m very much in favour of. The girls think of nothing else leading up to it. I’m generalising, of course, but given that conversations between Miss SY and her friends have been going on about it since last year, I don’t think I’m too far off the mark.
The timing isn’t perfect – smack bang in the middle of some pretty important assessments and a week after the school musical – but I don’t think there is a perfect time for a Y12er. Life is busy and the finish line is in sight.
At my daughter’s school they focus on raising funds for a charity so it is a Benefit Ball and not all about them. This year will be particularly poignant as two much-loved teachers are giving cancer a kick where it hurts and they’ve chosen a local cancer support charity to which to donate the proceeds (if you’re a business which would like to support the event by donating a raffle prize, please email me!).
We’ve nailed the dress, shoes and accessories; have booked in for hair, makeup and nails on the big day. I’m sworn to secrecy about the dress but I can say it was nabbed on sale back in January and is definitely one that will be worn again. All will be revealed the week after next but if you’re in the throes of formal dress shopping, don’t leave home without first reading this post.
Today’s post … and yes, I’m finally getting to the point of it … is all about what Miss SY has been using on her skin in the lead up to the big day and what school formal skincare tips I can recommend based on that.
Now, I know it seems a bit excessive to be worrying about 16-year-old skin for one night of her life. Oh, ok, you got me. Yes, it is DEFINITELY excessive but so is the whole school formal shebang.
I have reminded my daughter often during this whole process that “back in the day” I bought $30 worth (a week and half of my part-time supermarket deli wage) of pale pink taffeta and a McCalls pattern so my best friend Tracey’s gorgeous mum could whip me up a suitably puffy number. I washed my own hair, brushed it in place Princess-Di style, didn’t wear foundation but in my head felt very 1980s glam. Must have been the white kitten heels and pearls.
Insert many a teenage eye roll here.
Anyhoo, as a matter of goodwill and a gazillion Mother of the Year points, I told Miss SY that I would be her Fairy Formal Beauty Godmother and that she could embark on a series of monthly mini-facials in the lead up to the big day.
This she embraced wholeheartedly, as you would if you’ve ever been on the receiving end of a facial. The facials were specifically designed to work on the congestion on her face in her t-zone, something that flares up with the dreaded hormones each month. And I have to say they have been hugely beneficial. She just had the final one of five last week and didn’t require any extractions. Her skin did flare up a couple of days afterwards but has re-settled down.
In between facials I’ve noticed a strange thing occurring. Miss SY had become extremely consistent with her at-home skincare routine. All of her own doing, no prodding required. Plus, two really good products that were sent to me to trial (more on that in a bit) but were more suited to her skin became part of that new routine. She only started using these a couple of months after I gave them to her. Two weeks later she said, “Mum, they really do work. It’s made a difference”.
Mmmm. What would I know, right?
1. Do consider a series of facials before the big day if there are skin issues you’d like to tackle long term. It’s best to start at least six months out from the event and to avoid any in the week of the event, unless it’s a calming treatment that won’t get the skin all huffy and puffy before the big day. Ask around for local recommendations in your area and also ask if they can do a package deal for you to reduce costs. Contact beauty training schools to see if they have a day that their students are offering services at reduced rates. Miss SY went to Lime Health and Beauty at Cotton Tree. The treatments were half and hour long and we paid extra if extractions were needed.
2. Get consistent with your skincare routine – morning AND night. It’s no use paying money for facials when in between the salon treatments you are leaving your skin to its own hormonal devices. Miss SY has had success with the Teen Aspect kit (2), a range with a cosmeceutical focus (about $60 for four products; stockists: ph 1800 648 851) which we buy from our local GP. She’s on her third set of the products and they’ve proven themselves over time.
And those products that Miss SY reluctantly used but with which has had surprising results? They are: Sodashi’s Balancing Serum ($106.50), which she applies after cleansing, and Sodashi Balancing Face and Neck moisturiser ($109.30). If you’re wanting to try this range, a great starting point would be the Balance Skin Care Kit (1. $226.60). Yes, it’s quite a bit above what I’d spend on skincare for her but a little really has gone a long way so I’ll probably re-stock. Especially as it’s working and chemical-free.
3. Get sleep. Easier said than done, I know. Most teens have a full school schedule, probably play a sport and might have a part-time job … oh and then there is their social life … and their phone. Switch off devices at least 30 minutes before hitting the sack and aim for eight hours each night. Without good sleep bank deposits, over time health will suffer and your skin will be the first to show signs of that.
4. Keep hydrated. With water. Skip the softdrinks and keep “cleansing” throughout the day with good old H2O. No need to get fancy about it. Just drink it.
5. Think about what you’re eating. Not so much, thinking about when you last had a Maccas fix; more, have you eaten two pieces of fruit and a decent amount of veggies today? We can slap all the stuff we like on our face but if we’re not looking after what’s on the inside, it will all be in vain. And pimples just love sugar and fat. Keep them as treats.
Do you have a teenager in the house? Any skincare tips that have worked for them that you’d like to share?