Fighting. Sharing. In Jesus’ name.

It’s mental health awareness month and I already have the victory, so I am just going for it right here.

I tend to handle hard seasons like the nurse that I am – I triage, I treat, I tend to others. I am think critically, I react swiftly and efficiently, and I handle effectively. And then months later, I crash. I find myself flat on my back. Everything feels dark and stormy. It’s too hard to brush my teeth and read my Bible and stay close to my people.

I’ve been there for the last little bit. I saw the red flags here and there for the last few months, with the tiniest triggers and the smallest setbacks throwing me for a loop. It came to a head last week, thanks to friends and family pressing in. At one point, my husband physically pulled me out of bed and put my shoes on so I could get moving one morning. I spent several days lamenting and analyzing. What went wrong? I’ve been preparing my heart, disciplining my body, digging into Scripture and community, and running on mission both in my city and on the Internet. My marriage is great, my kids are awesome, and things feel pretty healthy overall. Why the sudden physical symptoms of depression? This felt like failure.

But the truth is it’s not failure. It’s just not. This is simply my life, in seasons. And it’s futile and foolish to think I’ll ever outgrow my need for the gospel, or even move on to a new problem instead of my usual struggle with pride and performance. I’m wired a certain way, I’m born into sin, and I’m made new only in Christ. And only on a daily, forever basis.

So the last few weeks were hard. But this week? This week, we fight. And this time? This time, I share as I go. Because His resurrection power is made positively perfect in my weakness. And I’m ready to boast in it.

This week: move body every day (gentle is okay), drink at least a liter of water each day, sex three times this week, be honest when people ask, no meeting with girls/women this week, memorize Isaiah 32:15-20, worship music or audio books only, and remember that this could end tomorrow and that there’s still joy in the midst.

I bought every product from Glossier… a review.

-updated October 2017 with more products and more opinions

I first started using Glossier about a year ago, after seeing the brand on Instagram. I have since fallen in love with it, as both a skincare + makeup company and as a force of nature + empowerment in the beauty world. I love Glossier’s slogans, their branding, their packaging, and the fact they use a diverse range of models and real-life women in their campaigns. I visited their flagship store in NYC the week that it opened (previously-planned trip, promise) and was not disappointed. Their real-life vibe is just as cool and genuine as their online one. I am impressed that in a world of full-face and drawn-on and more is more, Glossier is planting its flag firmly in the camp of natural is beautiful; let’s just tidy it up a bit.

In this post, I’m going to review everything Glossier currently sells.* I’ve literally pulled up their site up in a different browser window and will simply work my way down their product offerings, giving you a little snippet of what the item is supposed to, and how I use and like it. Let’s get started!

SKINCARE

The Supers – “supplements for your face.” You can buy these three serums separately or in a trio at a discount. I bought the trio. I did not notice a huge difference, such as a crazy glow or plumped skin. However, adding these into my regimen was the turning point, when I began to notices the subtle changes in my skin overall. My face was smoother, my makeup went on easier, and everything just felt brighter and healthier. I also experienced drastically fewer breakouts. The bottles are deceivingly small and don’t last forever, but the price point is great compared to that of other serums on the market.

Will purchase again: YES

Priming Moisturizer – “light and buildable moisturizer for a dewy, smooth canvas.” This is marketed as a lightweight priming moisturizer. It goes on easily and does not irritate the skin. It is unscented, and I like the packaging – you don’t have to squeeze hard to get it out. I use it in the morning on top of the face mist.

Will purchase again: YES

Milky Jelly Cleanser – “one face wash to rule them all.” I cannot disagree with this. I use it only in the morning after the gym, but I could easily use it multiple times a day. It’s so gentle! And it smells like heaven filled with roses. Sometimes I apply it on a dry face, and let the water suds it up. Other times I get my face wet first.  I plan to never run out of this stuff. I use it in the morning as my only cleanser, and in the evening for makeup removal before a tougher cleanser.

Will purchase again: YES

Priming Moisturizer Rich – “a supremely lavish hydrating experience.” Yes, a thousand times yes. I’m so glad Glossier came out with a heavier option. This goes on like a night cream, but I’ve found myself using it in the morning, as well. It is packed with hydrating ingredients and my face feels soft hours after applying.

Will purchase again: YES 

Balm Dotcom – “cult favorite do-everything salve.” I first saw this product being applied in a video, on a girl’s lips and nose and even cheeks. It really does work that way! It’s like the new Vaseline, with better ingredients. I use it on my eyelids and lips. I’ve tried the unscented, rose flavor, cherry, coconut, and birthday. The flavored ones have a nice little tint, and the birthday has some shimmer!

Will purchase again: YES

Mega Greens Galaxy Pack – “a juice cleanse for your face.” That sounds about right! This mask goes on smooth and little chunky, with actual pieces of leafy greens and who-knows-what that never quite rub all the way in. It also never totally dries like a typical clay mask, but I have to grown to enjoy that feature. I can apply it more often without it feeling super harsh.

Will purchase again: YES

Moisturizing Moon Mask – “the most intensely hydrating treatment we could make.” Packed with hyaluronic acid and a bunch of other super-moisturizing ingredients, this has become much more than a mask for me. In fact, I haven’t washed it off once since purchase. I apply it at the end of my nighttime routine as a sleeping pack, and leave it on while I sleep. This is the juiciest, plumpest my face has ever felt. That’s a good thing.

Will purchase again: YES

Soothing Face Mist – “for fresh, glowy skin all day long.” I’ve used rosewater sprays before, and they’ve never really made me dewy or glowy. This one isn’t an exception, but it does have extra ingredients (aloe, for one) that make my face feel much softer and refreshed after use. I spritz in the middle of the day, as well as first thing most mornings beneath my moisturizer.

Will purchase again: YES

 

MAKEUP

Cloud Paint – “a new way to blush.” This is Glossier’s newest product, a gel-cream that goes on in four vibrant shades that ease up into a natural tint when applied. I own Haze and Puff, and I am pleased with both. I particularly enjoy the little tutorials Glossier has released for each color, and I’ve tried to emulate those looks. However, I just don’t like getting messy. I’ve never been a “make a palette on the back of my hand” kind of girl, and my fingers get a little stained from this. Although, I could try a designated sponge blender for this. And I do really want to try Dusk. Maybe in another formula, someday.

Will purchase again: NO

Haloscope – “the galaxy’s first dewy effect highlighter.” Praise God for this baby! I have it in Moonlight and Topaz, and I rarely go a day without it. Sometimes I stack one on top of the other. I love the ease of use, and they last all day long without looking too shimmery or sparkly. It has a moisturizing quality to it, too, which I adore. This product is one of my top two favorite products by Glossier.

Will purchase again: YES

Generation G – “lip color that gives the look and finish of just-blotted lipstick.” That is exactly how it looks. I own Like and Zip. The colors are vibrant but easy to wear wherever, with as much or as little makeup alongside it. I bought my second one after they modified the formula a bit, but I still find they lack staying power and tend to crease pretty quickly. They go on best with a little Balm Dotcom on top.

Will purchase again: NO

Boy Brow – “our all-in-one brow filler, fluffer, and shaper.” This is my absolute favorite product at Glossier. It does everything it says, and it stays in place for hours. I have tried all of the shades and they each do great for different purposes. I use Brown the most. I cannot recommend this one enough.

Will purchase again: YES

Perfecting Skin Tint – “more skin, less makeup.” This concept is a new one for a lot of us makeup and skincare connoisseurs. It’s not a tinted moisturizer. It’s not a foundation. It’s not a sunscreen. It’s literally the layer between moisturizer and whatever other skin-covering makeup you put on your face. It evens out the tone and adds a little dewy sheen to your face. I wear it on top of a tinted sunscreen, and these days those two things form my foundation step.

Will purchase again: YES

Stretch Concealer – “makeup that lets skin look like…skin!” I’d agree with this claim, and it’s why I cannot buy it again. It goes on smooth and lasts for hours. The color is a great fit, too. But it just doesn’t provide the full coverage I’m looking for under my eyes. That’s the only area on my entire face that I want a nice thick layer of help. This one also creases considerably on me, but maybe I’m not priming correctly. I’m wondering if maybe it does better with color correction around noses and on chins, instead of a heavy layer on my undereye circles.

Will purchase again: NO

Wowder – “cut shine, blur the appearance of pores, set makeup, look like skin.” Yep, it does all of those things. I don’t wear it every day because I like a dewy look and it provides more of a full-face, made-up look, but it also covers imperfections and smooths everything out. I have been just as impressed with this as any competing mineral makeup, even more with Wowder so than most of the other brands I’ve tried. I do wish it came in a compact, instead of a loose powder.

Will purchase again: YES

Lip Gloss – “cushiony, crystal clear shine.” So true! This stuff gives me a long-lasting glossy look, without any tacky or sticky feeling or residue. It originally came in a holiday collection, but now Glossier has added it to stock for good.

Will purchase again: YES

OTHER

Body Hero Duo – “for the other 90% of you.” I am very pleased with Glossier’s first step onto the body skincare scene. The wash goes on like an oil but foams up easily when wet, and the lotion starts out thick but also spreads very well. A nickel-sized amount of each product works for my whole body. I wasn’t crazy about the scent at first, but it’s growing on me (still wish it came unscented). It sticks around most of the day, and the lotion really does produce a subtle shimmery glow.

Will purchase again: MAYBE

Invisible Shield – “sunscreen for people who hate wearing sunscreen.” I’m already borderline obsessed with sun protection, so I didn’t need to be convinced to add sunscreen to my routine. This stuff smells amazing and goes on very smoothly. A little really does go a long way. The only reason I don’t plan on purchasing again is because I prefer a higher SPF.

Will purchase again: NO

Glossier You – “creamy, sparkling, clean, warm. That’s You.” I only recently began wearing perfume and decided to go with one signature scent that my kids picked out, but I was happy to try out a sample of this fragrance. I am crazy about it! It’s actually similar to the one I already wear, but just different enough to keep things interesting. I agree with the claim that the base notes lead out – there’s nothing too overpowering about this scent but it fits pretty much any scenario.

Will purchase again: YES

There you have it! If you choose to buy, I highly recommend trying the kits, so you can experience several products at once and save a little money. As far as new products go, I hope they release an eye cream soon. I hear SPF is already in the works. It happened! And I bought it, of course. Invisible Shield smells amazing and goes on very smoothly. A little really does go a long way. The only reason I don’t plan on purchasing again is because I prefer a higher SPF.

I assume by now that you can tell I am a fan. Been there, done that, bought the actual sweatshirt. Well, my best friend bought the sweatshirt for me for Christmas. Overall, I’m just really into the Glossier message. I love that they have democratized beauty (founder Emily Weiss’ words) in a way that makes it both simpler and more accessible to women like me. Glossier is about beauty in real life. I can get down with that.

*As of October 31, 2017, I own every product currently in production by Glossier. I've never received a product for free, although I was recently selected for the brand's rep program! Shop through any of the links on this post to access my personal page and score 20% off of your first purchase!

Thoughts on election frenzy.

*edit – almost immediately after publishing this post, I received critically important and helpful feedback from some kind folks on Twitter. So I changed the title and made a few edits, because this election DOES matter. The future of America DOES matter. I tried to keep things vague and tidy the first time around, but vague and tidy just doesn’t work during election season. So I took things in a different direction, a topic on which I’m pretty proficient and a direction in which I feel safe leading my readers. Thanks for being such a part of this process!

I love politics. I discovered NPR my freshman year of college and I haven’t recovered since. I’ve always had this desire to know a little bit about a lot of things. I’m almost positive it stems from sin – fear of failure, and desire for approval, and maybe a little pride thrown in. But the genuine thirst for knowledge is real and I’m grateful the Lord put that in me. So I listen, and I read, and how many times do I have to say I love Twitter? I’m a millennial – of COURSE I get my news from social media!

I’ve voted Republican and I’ve voted Democrat, and I’ve never been totally satisfied with either party’s platforms. And that’s okay. Nobody gets it perfectly. No party gets it perfectly. We are sinful and greedy and easily corrupted. This world began falling apart the moment sin entered the world and it won’t stop decaying until Jesus comes back to fix it once and for all. Even in the waiting, I’m still grateful to be an American who loves the democratic process.

I know elections are exhausting to watch. Your brain hurts from all of the ads and your Facebook feeds are probably tired. But here’s why I think it matters to follow politics and current events, both in America and around the world – because God says to look. Both the Old and the New Testaments are filled with examples of God’s desire for us to keep our eyes open. To perceive what he’s doing. To be in this world while not of it. To fight for truth and justice as he defines it. To bind up broken hearts and set people free. And so we listen, and we read, and we talk about it, and we rally, and we vote.

But there’s a catch. It’s easy to get burnt out. It’s easy to succumb to fear or feelings of overwhelm or hopelessness. Self-care is important. I could say I don’t get caught up in the frenzy, because I know who wins in the end and I know the God I serve cares about truth and justice even more than I do. But there’s more to it than that, on a daily, micro level. I guess when it comes down to it, I have an election self-care regimen.

I refuse to engage in conversations that involve hateful, damaging, fear-mongering language about the direction in which this country is headed. I thank God that I live with a black President and a woman Presidential candidate. I fact check a lot. I open my Bible each morning and look for clues on how to love people better and what God says about leadership. I click through several funny political memes per day. My favorites were from the second debate.

I gather my kids around the table and teach them how to look at the world through a viewfinder that says a man named Jesus died for it. I remind them that this includes every single person, all of the genders and all of the colors, with all of the baggage anyone cares to bring to the table. I stay off of social media at least one day per week, sometimes two. I practice saying things like, “You might be right” (thanks, Jess). I pray for more humility and wisdom. I bite my tongue more now than I ever have in my life. I also speak up more than I ever have in my life. Because there is a time for everything, and this matters.