Thursday, February 23, 2006

who's discounting?

I'm here today, folks, to sing the praises of discount shopping.

That's right. The girl who drools when she thinks about the chance to visit 24, faubourg Saint-Honore is actually going to tell you how to get the best for less.

Well, sort of.

Let's back it up. It began when I moved to Maine: I developed dry skin.

Not that I was ever particularly oily, but it got exceedingly bad last fall. Actual flakiness is not pretty.

Now, I know I sound as though I'm unwaveringly an advocate of all things high-end (read: expensive), but I'm neither able nor idiotic enough to shop that way all the time. I use Suave shampoo, after all. For the skin, I tried everything I could get my hands on and nothing really worked. I worked my way up from the drugstore shelves to the department store, but I could have signed my paychecks and my firstborn over to the Lancome counter, and it wouldn't have helped.

A couple of weeks ago, though, as I surfed around online drugstores, I found a new skin-care line. And I figured, I've tried the expensive, filled-with-special-ingredients creams; might as well go for the dermatologist-tested, drugstore-priced alternative. After that, the only option left would be to hock my left foot and invest in some Creme de la Mer, all the while praying it not only worked, but lasted a lifetime. It should, for $110 per ounce.

I'm here to say, unequivocally, that it ain't about the price tag. This line works. The tightness is finally gone; I don't have to reapply my moisturizer three times a day just to keep from turning pink and flaky. Almay just won a convert.

I also ordered this awesome mineral powder foundation. Don't get me wrong; my expensive, can't-tell-I've-had-wine foundation is still fantastic, but this stuff actually seems to clear up minor blemishes. Moreover -- see, this is relevant! -- it doesn't dry me out at all.

Plus I can throw it in my purse without worry of spills. And since the purse didn't come from the drugstore, that's a definite bonus.

I'm still thrilled at the prospect of (window-)shopping in Paris, and I'll always cherish and protect the finer things I own. But two years of dry skin healed in a week for $20?

I'm sold.

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