Thanks so much for agreeing to do this interview! Tell us about yourself.
I’m currently reconceiving what I want to be when I grow up. Until recently, I was an English professor - I left the field this summer after years of dealing with academic precarity, first as an adjunct and then as visiting faculty. My kids started kindergarten this year, and my husband and I decided that we wanted to put down roots for them. So, after two cross-country moves in less than a year, we’re starting to settle into our newly adopted home in Maine. And Adeline was one of my inspirations to make that change; seeing SB grow and being part of the community opened my eyes to possibilities beyond academia!
I teach yoga at a local studio in town, and I’m in the process of getting certified to teach Kids’ Yoga and Meditation. I’ve also recently gotten into Crossfit and have decided that lifting heavy things is really awesome.
How did you learn about Sabbatical Beauty?
I crowd-sourced recommendations for a moisturizer on Tumblr couple years ago, and Carly Kocurek mentioned that a friend of hers had developed a product (Calm) for her sensitive skin. I looked into it and ordered a sample. This was in December 2015. The sample arrived, and...I did nothing. I didn’t even open it. I couldn’t tell you why - that was a rough time in my life (my mom had just died), and I wasn’t very good at taking care of myself then.
What convinced you to try the products?
Flash forward a year exactly...December 2016, I got an invitation (from Carly, I think) to join the SB community on Facebook. I’d also seen an article on K-Beauty and academics and recognized some names, so it just seemed like the stars were aligning to have me give it another shot. I visited the website again, and ordered the Revive sample set as a pick-me-up for having to travel from Colorado to Philly for the MLA convention, when I didn’t even get an interview that year. It was waiting for me when I got back from MLA, and I started using it that day. It was the beginning of a beautiful beautiful thing...
Tell us about your skin BEFORE SB and after using SB. Please be as specific and detailed as possible.
I have ridiculously sensitive skin, and my cheeks tend to get red from heat, cold, phases of the moon, you name it. I’m also prone to hormonal and stress-related breakouts on my chin. For the last year before I started SB, I had gotten really self-conscious about a couple of spots on the right side of chin that were always raw - I’d either have a fresh zit wanting to explode, or have scabby grossness from picking at it (anxiety response). I never left the house without makeup; I angled my face to hide that side of my chin in photos... That’s what got most of my attention before SB. Beyond that, I was starting to notice the stuff of the aging woman - fine lines around my eyes, forehead wrinkles (from my Resting Bitch Face).
After SB, my hormonal breakouts aren’t nearly as awful (usually - this past month has been an outlier), and that gave the spots on my chin a chance to finally heal. The lines and wrinkles are reduced, and my redness is a lot milder. I can count the times I’ve worn makeup in the last 6 months on 1 hand. I get so many compliments on my skin these days, and I’m much more confident about it.
What’s your desert island SB product, and why?
DON’T MAKE ME CHOOOOOOOSE! If I must, I think I’ll go with the Cucumber Mint cleanser. I love how it foams up and leaves my face super duper clean, without being overly drying, and the smell is just so pleasant. And, as someone who despises all things cucumber, I remain amazed at your SB sorcery that makes that happen.
Are you a part of the Sabbatical Beauty Facebook community? How does it help your enjoyment and use of the products?
YES! I adore the FB community. I especially love seeing everyone’s selfies because they’re just so impressive. Unlike the usual before/after photos I see on my FB feed (for the usual suspects of skincare), I can see real results, and not just creative filtering. The pictures are what got me motivated to try the products.
I also love seeing the different ways people use various products. Char’s suggestion for the AAEGO on forehead wrinkles was a game-changer, and I will religiously try whatever Amy suggests for any condition because she knows her stuff!
And I really love interacting with the people in the community - talking not just about products, but politics and hobbies and pets and movies and all the random stuff that comes out during FB parties and such.
What advice would you give to a potential first time buyer?
ACTUALLY USE YOUR PRODUCT WHEN YOU BUY IT! Beyond that… I encourage first-timers to try one of the Routine Samplers to get a sense of what the whole brand is like. The sample sizes are generous, so you get to experience weeks of the SB routine (mine lasted about a month) to decide what works for you. Join the FB community and get tips from everyone for specific concerns, and know that when you buy SB, you’re getting so much more than great skincare.
Thanks so much for talking to us today!