I won't lie, the life of a beauty editor is extremely surreal. To be honest, very different—and far more difficult—than most people would probably assume. (Despite what it might look like on Instagram, we're not just swiping lipstick and taking selfies all day, folks!) I'd be remiss to let the amazing perks of the job go unacknowledged, and believe me when I say the neverending flow of products, the pinch-me interview moments, beautiful events, and complimentary treatments and services aren't lost on me. I'm insanely lucky, and I absolutely love my job. That said, there's a lot more to this industry than meets the eye, and it's actually something I really struggle talking and being open about because the last thing I would ever want to seem is ungrateful. (Believe me, that's so not the case.)
In all actuality, the job of a beauty editor is far more unglamorous than most people would expect. The majority of my days (and many late nights and work-riddled weekends!) are spent hunched over my laptop, sweating bullets, chugging too much coffee, writing copy in order to meet deadlines, answering to a bottomless inbox (I receive—and NEED to reply to hundreds of emails per day), running to events and meetings, and staying on top of countless other tasks and responsibilities that can sometimes feel daunting and overwhelming, especially for someone like me, a Class A introvert. Additionally, there's a lot of pressure as far as appearance, and being immersed in a career and industry that are so beauty-focused, while fun at times, can also do a serious number on one's self-confidence and sense of self-worth. I've found that over the past few years, I've strayed from old practices and beauty habits that I swore by or that used to make me happy simply because other editors, influencers, or industry experts said it wasn't the "right" way to do it or the "cool," socially accepted beauty editor thing to do.
What's funny, is that even though I love learning from top makeup artists, hairstylists, dermatologists, and estheticians, each and every person I talk to has a different view about what's the correct or best way to do something—be it the way I apply a contour or favorite blush, the brands I should or shouldn't use, the ingredients I need or don't need in my routine, there are a lot of beauty "rules" out there. But guess what? More often than not, the quest for perfect skin, perfect hair, perfect makeup, the perfect routine, and so on and so forth is an impossible, pointless, and losing battle. I wish more people would point this out.
As a beauty editor, I find myself in this weird limbo of being an unofficial beauty expert. I'm not a certified or trained anything, but I do have very close access to people who are. Therefore, their thoughts and opinions easily muddle and bleed into mine—sometimes for the amazing end result, and sometimes not. Because of this, I've recently made a vow to myself to get back to the basics and to carry out my life as a beauty editor and beauty lover the way I want to—not how I think I should based on what other people expect, say, or do in their own lives. And I've formulated 10 guidelines to help me do so.
The below rules are hardly do or die or even that important in the grand scheme of things. But, I thought it would be fun (and who knows, maybe helpful?) to share certain rules I hereby disagree with and ignore despite what the beauty industry tells me. Curious? Keep scrolling!
1. I Talk About My Filler—a Lot
Eighth Day Eye Renewal Cream ($225)
First and foremost, I'm not condemning anyone who chooses to remain mum about any cosmetic treatments and procedures they receive. But I've found it extremely interesting how taboo the topic remains within an industry so steeped in these types of procedural trends. I know so many beauty insiders who literally WON'T talk about it, and while I do understand and respect that choice, on a personal level, I prefer to be super candid. I guess I feel I have a certain obligation to openness on the subject, and I actually really like discussing the kinds of treatments I've received since moving to Los Angeles and becoming a beauty editor. (From the good to the eek.)
In my eyes, it opens up an important dialogue. I've had girls I went to high school and college with ask me if I've gotten filler and whether I would recommend it and what my thoughts and takeaways are. I'm a beauty editor! I want to be helpful! I never play coy, and I'm very open about the people and places I love and trust; I am also open and honest about treatments I've received, the ones I feel are overhyped, or are, in my experience, a complete waste of money. (Oh, and if you DM me, I WILL tell you places to avoid—because, unfortunately, there are a few.)
As a beauty editor and reporter, I'm lucky enough to receive most of these services for free, something I don't take lightly, so you can bet anyone who IS spending their money will get full disclosure and my honest opinions. I know some people probably think it uncouth to talk about the ways in which they've chosen to enhance their appearance, but I just don't see it that way. Oh, and since you're probably wondering, I love Vanessa Lee at The Things We Do and Lena Metcalfe at Facile. Because yes, I've gotten filler in my lips (and my chin!) and they're both extremely talented. But, of course, if you're not aboard the injection train, I love the above eye cream for an instantaneous and longterm Botox-like result and the lip plumper below for a perkier pout.