About a month ago, when I decided to do this challenge publicly, I was still very naive. Bolstered by my friends and co-workers and excited to have something huge like this to kick off my blogging experience here, I confidently chose to put myself out there as a guinea pig, assuming embarrassment would be minimal.

Then, I got my first digital photo analysis of my skin, and I went home and cried.

I was shocked. Bewildered. I’m a fairly pale girl, always have been. I’m the one people make fun of on the beach, wearing big floppy hats. Sunburn is not enjoyable to me, and I can count on one hand how many times I’ve been in a tanning bed (and I’m not proud of those few moments). So while I was braced for the possibility of a few wrinkles and big pores, what I was not expecting was this: That’s my pale skin. With sun damage! A million little UV spots just biding time till one day, unbeknownst to me, they’ll show up ready to party.

Surprisingly, the wrinkles weren’t bad. I had one, so I won’t complain. But I was severely dehydrated, and full of bacteria, thanks to my awful habits of drinking 4 cups a coffee a day and not always cleansing before bed.

So yeah, I cried…because I had to realize that I’ve been lazy and unappreciative. I just expect my skin to always look like it looks now, with no effort whatsoever given to keeping it that way. And the truth is, that will always backfire. If I don’t correct it now, I will wake up in five years with that spotty face.

So not only do I have to publicly stare down my own vanity, but I’m being forced to recognize and rectify habits that don’t serve me well. Sure, I love coffee, and I joke about my addiction daily. However, I never once considered that it would have a negative effect on my skin. Apply sunscreen daily? I’ve never bothered, why would I? I’m not tanning or anything. Stupidly, though, I didn’t count on the endless hours of driving with sun blazing through my window, or all the times I’ve spent with my son outside at the playground. It all adds up, and it’s not pretty.

It’s slowly sinking in that the challenge I decided to do for fun, to just “look better,” will ultimately turn into a vehicle for massive introspection and analysis of not just my habits, but my concepts of health and beauty as well. Eventually, my hope is to not just have better skin, but a better understanding of how to care for myself, both inside AND out.

If you’re interested in the 90 Day Challenge, you can still sign up until November 30th. The cost for all the products and treatments is $695,  valued at almost $1300. Call 636-530-9020 for more information.

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