This blog was inspired by something I heard in an NPR interview with Marie Kondo, author of The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up. The idea of having a dedicated place in your house that “sparks joy” really appealed to me. I’ve suffered from dysthymia, OCD, and generalized anxiety for most of my life and often struggle with mindfulness and self-care.

Within the same week of hearing that interview, I found myself at a personal and professional crossroads.  I was “laid off”from my beloved teaching job (decreasing enrollment ->faculty cuts for next year, so I’m not out of a job, I just won’t have one as of August). Compound this with my impending nuptials, and I could barely find a calm spot in my frantic brain.

Enter beauty products. I’ve always loved makeup and have dabbled in Asian skincare. I found that, as my stress and anxiety increased, the joy and calm I found in taking care of my skin, in researching products, and in wandering the aisles of Ulta and Sephora also increased.

I decided to carve out a place in my life for this new thing that brought me joy. While my standby joy-bringers (my fiance and my dog) were still wonderful and amazing and perfect, it’s an interesting change to find happiness in something solitary and personal.

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