One of my earlier “makeup moments” came when I was about ten years old. My mom’s friend, Helen, who had been her matron of honor at her wedding, came for a visit. As I was always apt to do, I wanted to hang out with the ladies. . . hear their conversation, drink in whatever I could from the Gurlz Club (my mom was an original member:)

This particular conversation began when my mother was admiring her friend’s beautifully maintained skin (they were both in their 40s at the time). Helen leaned in closely as if to reveal the big secret. And what she said has stayed with me ever since then:

“Clean your face, she said. No matter how tired you are at the end of the day, no matter WHAT, wash your face with a wash cloth. It doesn’t matter if you’re about to fall asleep at the sink, your face will thank you if you clean it every night.”

And by “thank you” I know now that she meant my facial skin would be healthier, longer. These have been words to live by. Right up there with my “do unto others. . .”

So, from that point forward, I’ve always been a face-washer. Starting at ten, it made me feel like I was doing something grown-up. . . an investment of time that would one day pay off. How many nights I’ve wanted to flop in my bed and fall asleep. . . all through high school after sweaty cheerleading nights. . . all through college and sorority house nights when all you can do is flop. . . all through the flight attendant days when all you want to do on a layover is fall in your bed and let the exhaustion overtake you. Thank goodness I always had Helen’s voice in my ears, “wash your face!” It’s an ingrained part of my daily ritual.

Even last night. At about 9:30 p.m. I slipped off the last two stair steps after tucking in my daughter. What a klutz. . . I sprained my ankle. This morning I have a “golf ball” on my left ankle as I sit here and type. So, as my dear husband helped collect and put me to bed to ice my ankle, once again I heard Helen’s voice, “wash your face.” And I hobbled in and did just that. Guess what. . . I slept better just knowing my face was clean.

So, what about the two products shown above? They are both magnificent, inexpensive, and available at most drug stores or “super centers.” Both products have appeared on Allure Magazine’s “Best of Beauty” list in recent years. Purpose Facial Cleanser is clear, pure, and gentle. You definitely need a wash cloth for this cleanser. The Aveeno Positively Radiant Daily Cleansing Pads are very convenient. No wash cloth needed. They foam on one side and exfoliate and scrub on the other.

So, to all my clients who ask me what they can do for their skin. . . what facial or treatment or cure may exist for their skin conditions, I say begin by washing your face. . . every night.

Thank you Johnson & Johnson.

But most thanks go to Helen. I wish she could know how much her advice has meant to me throughout the years.

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