Beauty Fads: We Did It for the Story, but We Still Do It Now
As editors we try a lot of odd health trends and beauty treatments. Most of the time when we tell our friends about our adventures in infrared saunas and no-poo, we have to assure them it was “for a story.” But every so often one of the off-the-wall trends we try sticks. Scroll through to find out which wacky fads have turned into habits for us!
First tried by associate editor Victoria Hoff in March 2015
I first learned about the joys of rolling hundreds of tiny needles into my face when I got a facial called Escarglow, which involved a dermatologist using a derma-roller to press snail slime into my skin. I was hooked when my previously impossible under-eye bags disappeared for a month as a result. I purchased a £20 derma-roller on Amazon and have never looked back. I've plumped up my lips, gotten rid those under-eye bags altogether, filled in fine lines, and evened out my skin tone, only with monthly maintenance. Everyone should be doing it. It's seriously amazing.
First tried by senior editor Deven Hopp in September 2015
A few months ago, I wrote a story about intermittent fasting. Fasting sounds intense, but throw “intermittent” on there and it becomes much less intimidating. The premise is simple: It’s not a diet; it's an eating pattern. Basically, you only eat during a certain eight- to 10-hour window. During the remaining 14 to 16 hours your body is in the fasted state and your insulin levels are low, making it easier for your body to burn fat. It takes about 12 hours without food for you body to reach that state, which is why most people don’t reach it with standard eating patterns. The beauty of intermittent fasting is that you get to reap the health benefits of fasting while still eating. Seemed simple enough to me, so I tried it. I note what time I finish eating in the evening and count 14 hours out. I don’t eat again until after that time. Most days I make it to 15 hours. Some days I’m ready for lunch by the time I hit hour 13. Rarely do I make it to 16 hours. I’m not a particularly healthy eater and I don’t cook, but I can do this. And I feel good about it.
Tinkle Eyebrow Shaper (£1)
First tried by senior editor Deven Hopp in October 2014
A while back, esthetician Kerry Benjamin disclosed to me that she shaves her face. Every few weeks, she grabs an eyebrow shaver and glides it down her entire face. I’d tried dermaplaning before, but it had never occurred to me to shave my face at home. Benjamin assured me it was an excellent form of exfoliation and that my skin would feel baby soft after. She was right. I went to the beauty supply store, picked up a three-pack of eyebrow shapers, and never looked back. I now shave my face about every three weeks or whenever I feel like it needs it.
Paul Schefz for Genlux
First tried by associate features editor Amanda Montell in November 2015
I learned about this unorthodox meditation technique while researching a story a few months ago. It requires you to strip down, climb into a lightless, soundproof tank full of saltwater, and float there with nothing but your thoughts for two hours! I thought it sounded part intriguing, part terrifying. But I couldn’t get it out of my head. So, after writing about it, I booked a float therapy session, and I was genuinely smitten by the experience. The session forced me to put away my hyper-productive brain for a while and simply relax into my own daydreams. I would definitely do it again and plan to book another appointment soon.
Vitamin Code Raw Calcium (£36)
First tried by associate features editor Amanda Montell in January 2016
I wrote about how I started taking plant-based calcium supplements made from algae after going vegan a couple of months ago. What’s amazing is that even before I went vegan, my nails had been brittle and peeling for quite a while. It didn’t even occur to me that I might be calcium deficient, as dairy was a part of my diet. But just a week or two after taking these supplements, my nails strengthened again. I didn’t even know that algae calcium was a thing (I mean, it sounds insane), but now I’m super into it. The only downside is you have to take like four pills a day to meet your full requirement, but even if I only take half that, I’m still getting far more nutrients than I was before.
First tried by managing editor Faith Xue in November 2015
Did I ever think that I would resort to lighting a Q-tip on fire to curl my stick-straight lashes? No, but clearly, life surprises you. I heard about this hack from InsiderBeauty.com founder Angela Kim—she nonchalantly mentioned that Korean women will hold a lighter up to a Q-tip to warm it up, then “lift” their lashes with it to give them a mini-perm of sorts. I did it for the story and was impressed with the results, but never thought I’d do it again (laziness and all that). Then, last week I lost my eyelash curler and instantly felt my chest seize up in anxiety. I only use Shu Uemura’s, and I was horrified thinking about the fact I would have to wait four whole days for shipping. But then I remembered the Q-tip trick. I grabbed my lighter, put it up to a Q-tip, and frantically started “perming.” Simply put, it worked.
What buzzy beauty trends have you tried, loved, and stuck with? Share your favourites in the comments below!