Monday, November 19, 2012

Beware What You Can't Read

Saturday night, I decided to sort through the bathroom cupboards, I threw away bottles of old, thick nail polish, expired makeup, etc. And then, I found a jar of face cream that I’d been given. I don’t usually wear face cream or lotion. My skin is really sensitive, even soap can burn my skin. But the face cream smelled really nice.

Still I’m not completely stupid, so I asked Ariel to read the minuscule list of ingredients, checking for anything nasty. Even with my reading glasses, the list was unreadable—you’d need a magnifying glass. (If I’d been really smart, I’d have asked my chemist son, but he wasn’t here. So I asked the math girl.) She said, “Most of the ingredients end in ‘-cone.’” Ah, silicone derivatives. No problem. I smoothed the cream on. It felt like silk.

Then, I went to bed. Big mistake.

When I woke in the morning, I dragged myself into the shower. It seemed odd to me that the water hurt my face. But, whatever. I glanced in the mirror afterwards, but it was fogged.

At breakfast, once hot coffee was coursing through my veins, I touched my cheeks. They were really hot. I asked the kids, “Is my face red?” They said, “Yes.” Ariel added, “Uh, you should look in the mirror.”

So, I did. Not only were my cheeks red, my entire face looked like it had been sunburned. I could tell you it looked like a sun-kissed glow. But it wasn’t. It was burned.

I ended up smearing some zinc oxide on my face with a thick coat of foundation. And either it worked to cover the burn, or the people at church were nice enough to ignore it. I did keep fanning my face, which was really hot. But not in a good way. 


  1. That's awful! I hate it when surprise ingredients get stuck in stuff. It's like the companies are trying to trick us into using hurting ourselves. I stick to gentle facewashes, too, or if it's been a light-duty day, just scrub with a terrycloth towel, no soap. I tend to break out when I use soaps and moisturizers, even "non-oily" ones--although I'll take zits over burns any day. Hope it heals quickly!

  2. I'm sorry to hear it irritated your skin so badly. I have sensitive skin as well, and it's amazing and annoying how many different chemicals get put in stuff you're supposed to apply to your face.

  3. OH noooo! I hope your face is better now. I'm totally guilty of doing stuff like this - like Oh, it looks okay/smells or seems nice so I will PUT IT ON MY SKIN. Luckily, I'm not very sensitive to much. But still. :P

  4. Oh, you poor thing. I can totally relate. My skin is overly sensitive, too, but the worst repercussions came when I was a teenager. I got a pimple. One, teeny tiny pimple. Barely noticeable, really. My cousin, who was a pro at dealing with pimples, really big, really noticeable pimples... gave me a bar of Clearasil soap and told me I should wash "real good" with it before I went to bed that night. (Prior to that, all I used was Lowilla "soapless soap.") The next morning, my whole face was red and swollen, and looked like it was made of melting wax. The most horrible looking thing you ever saw. Never ever touched a bar of Clearasil again.