• Randi Max

Pandemic Beauty Revival

Updated: Nov 29, 2020

Six grueling months of the pandemic, politics and quarantine have taken their toll on all our beauty routines, and even though I’m chilling with my lover and doggies, I still have to look in the mirror.

I must confess: I’m one vain bitch. After months of reading and watching depressing news, the panacea of homemade crispy-chewy chocolate chip cookies and Oreo or Summer Peach Chick-fil-A milkshakes have taken their toll on my body. Salons are a level 7 on every COVID-19 “risk list,” so what’s a gal supposed to do if she wants to feel like a babe again? Just for her shrinking ego?

Initially, I was psyched and felt liberated from my pricey aesthetics shackles and time-consuming routine. I declared it’s time to simplify life, save money and work on my soul. However, if quarantine has your hairline looking like Chewbacca and your waistline looking like Jabba the Hutt, it may be time to do a touch of DIY grooming.

Here are some simple recommendations to connect your inner glow to the best friend who stares back at you in the mirror on a daily basis.

Hair Tips: Free yourself from tedious trips to the hairdresser to get color, cut or keratin treatment. How bad are those chemicals on your hair anyway? Does your hair really look that terrible with a touch of frizz? I’ve cut my own hair three times, and it looks great. But I have no idea what it looks like in the back, though. Try Madison Reed for single-process dark-colored hair. If you have highlights, bask in the glory of your dark roots, blonde tips and your hair finally being healthy again. It is waaay too difficult and damaging to highlight one's hair. Trust me, my camp friend Betsy tried to get creative with a store-bought highlighting kit, circa summer 1985, and sadly she fried my tresses, splitting them into a non-sexy Pat Benatar femullet and sinking me into a teen depression.

My hair fairy, Becky, says if your hair is parched, go to the pantry and grab some coconut oil. Heat it up so it’s soft and warm, not hot, and you can even put it on your dirty hair. Apply it from mid-hair to the ends, and let it sit 10 minutes. Rinse out and shampoo once or twice.

Another helpful idea -- don’t wash your hair every day. Be a dirty hippie. Seriously, Americans over wash their hair and tragically dry it out. Go Euro. Spray some perfume on your hands, and run it through your scalpy-smelling roots. You truly only need to wash your hair once or twice a week.

Nail Tips: I always found manicures/pedicures a monotonous waste of time and money. However, it is painful and unsightly to have bad cuticles and cracked feet. Back to the solution of opening the pantry and heating up some warm coconut oil to massage onto your peeling cuticles, dehydrated legs and calloused feet. For the loveliest feet, indulge in a product called Baby Foot, the original exfoliant foot peel. It’s $25 on Amazon. To optimize the product, soak your feet in a tub for an hour before you apply. During the next week, you will shed that impenetrable reptile skin and adore your renewed epidermal layer. Fair warning: You may repulse your family as your skin exuviates throughout the house.

My favorite, budget-friendly over-the-counter products are....

Cleanser: Cetaphil. I don’t care what fancy cleanser you give me, nothing is better, budget conscious and dermatologist recommended.

Lip Protection/Hydration: NO-AD 50 SPF baby formula.

Daily Face Moisturizer: Olay SPF 15 or 30, and must be sensitive skin formula. It has a better texture.

Body Moisturizer: Dry skin: Nivea. Normal skin: Lubriderm.

Looking to eliminate pandemic chinchilla fuzz and dead skin? Try the Schick Silk Multi-Purpose Dermaplaning Exfoliating & eyebrow razor on Amazon. A 3-pack is $4.99.

The no make-up, make-up look is very in fashion. Here are the finest ways to achieve it.

Lashes: Exquisite lashes frame your eyes and make them POP. They also make you look less tired. Don’t overdo it, because tarantula lashes look silly. I swear that well-done lashes are better than Botox. Unfortunately, the pandemic has ruined the days of lash extensions. Latisse is 99% the same prescription formula as glaucoma medication bimatoprost. It really grows your lashes and gives them a nice curl. If you have lighter lashes, it looks excellent to tint them. This also works wonderful on eyebrows. There are many tinting kits on amazon. I used to get it professionally done and I loved it. It's just not worth the safety risk of taking a trip to the salon. I haven’t had the guts to try it on my own yet.

If you want to splurge, there is a hawt product called Lashify that is the rage. It’s pricey and will set you back $145, but it has an enormous cult following. Or you can simply use my favorite mascara, Trish McEvoy High Volume Jet Black.

Olio E Osso tinted balms are a beauty trifecta, as they give moisture, color & SPF on lips and cheeks for $28. Try the bronze or the dusty rose.

SPF: There are so many terrific facial sunscreens out there that not only protect your face from wrinkles, blotches and cancer, but also give you that J-Lo glow. These are binges, but oh so worth it. Skinbetter Science: Sunbetter Tone Smart and waterproof SPF 68. $55. If you are athletic and need serious coverage, this is the ONE for you. It comes in a handy compact, so you can easily touch up your face or body after your tennis match. Best of all, the sponge perfectly blends the sunscreen to your jaw/hairline.

Revision Skincare Intellishade Matte: SPF 45. It’s $75, but I love it. You don’t need any foundation. It’s flawless, natural luminosity.