Confessions of a Skincare Junkie and Closeted Gwyneth Paltrow Fan


Last year when I turned 45, my skin changed. I began noticing dryness, breakouts, dullness, and of course, more lines. The lines don’t bother me so much, and every time a new one appears I sing a bit from one of my favorite Indigo Girls songs,

With every lesson learned, a line upon your beautiful face.

I’ve learned a lot of lessons over the years and have earned every single one of those lines on my face. However, the breakouts, dullness, and dryness were bothering me, so I began a quest to heal my aging skin and thus my secret obsession with skincare began.

I became a Goop addict. Goop is Gwyneth Paltrow’s blog and website for all things wellness. I have a love/hate relationship with Ms. Paltrow.

Gooop website, computer screen

She is my age, she is beautiful, her skin is flawless, and she is talented and very knowledgeable about wellness. However, at times, she comes off obnoxiously self-centered and out of touch with the masses (see, love/hate.) Despite my conflicted feelings, I started browsing her website a few weeks after I turned 45 and experienced the skin changes.

I found some fantastic articles on Goop written by many of the top experts in wellness, fitness, sexual health, and fashion.

I read every skincare article on how to get glowing skin, how to treat aging skin, and how to cure your breakouts.

The articles are filled with advice and lists of magic potions and skincare products that Goop sells on their website. As I read each article, I would fill my online shopping cart with the products suggested only to find myself with a staggeringly expensive total. I’d feel sick to my stomach and quickly close my laptop computer without making any purchases. I repeated this every time a new Goop article showed up on my Facebook feed.

I couldn’t help myself and became a little obsessed with Gwyneth Paltrow and wanted everything she was selling. It was a mid-life crisis girl crush. 

I’ve experienced crushes like this before. Right after the birth of my daughter Ella, I became obsessed with another blonde wellness guru. 

Ella was a terrible sleeper. TERRIBLE. Because of Ella’s brain injury caused at birth, she would stay awake for 3 or 4 days at a time, finally crashing out to sleep for maybe 4 hours, wake up and repeat the cycle. My husband and I survived on very little sleep and too much beer and wine. For survival, my husband and I slept in shifts. During the wee hours of the morning when I was up alone with Ella, I watched television. We didn’t have cable TV at the time, so I watched infomercials. Specifically, Suzanne Somers’ infomercials. 

I was fascinated by her, her health claims, skincare products, hormone treatments, thigh master, nutrition products, and everything she sold.

She really is the godmother of the pop culture wellness community.

She was selling to women her own age, pre-menopausal women. I never bought anything from her, I was 29 when Ella was born and too overwhelmed with Ella’s care to worry about my skin or anything else about myself. 

But something about late nights with Suzanne Somers drew me in. As a child of the 1970s, Three’s Company was one of my favorite TV shows. I spent hours in front of the mirror trying to replicate Chrissy Snow’s ponytails. I only told one of my girlfriends about my Suzanne Somers’ crush and she bought me coffee mug with Suzanne’s face on it.

However, that’s as far as my products from Ms. Somers went, but with Gwyneth, I’m all in and ready to buy everything she sells. 

I finally took the plunge and bought one product from the Goop skincare line, the Exfoliating Instant Facial. It was one of the products that were recommended over and over in the articles on the Goop website. I took a deep breath and spent $125.00 on a jar. I am embarrassed to say how excited I was when it was delivered in the mail.

The packaging was beautiful and sleek, just like Gwyneth. 

I ran into the bathroom to give it a try. As I put the cream on my clean face it began to tingle and sting a little. I left it on for about a minute then rinsed my face with water. My face was blood red and continued to tingle. When my husband came home an hour later he asked me what I had done to my face. The redness subsided and my skin was literally glowing and felt amazing. I was sold. It’s recommended to use the product 2 to 3 times a week. I use it once or twice a week, so one jar lasts me quite a while.

A few months later, I decided to take the plunge again and buy another Goop product, the Luminous Melting Cleanser. Just like the Exfoliating Instant Facial, I fell in love with the product.

It goes on smooth like butter and it’s recommended that you give yourself a facial massage before rinsing it off, which feels divine. My skin feels like a dream.

I always follow up with a splash of rose water and True Love Rose Elixir or my latest obsession, Blue Dream Facial Lotion, both from my local skincare experts at Lunaroma. I apply the elixir and lotion with a rose quartz facial roller suggested by Goop that I bought at TJ Max’s for a fraction of the cost of the one sold on the Goop website. During the day I apply a tinted sunscreen that I get from my local Beautycounter consultant. If I’m feeling fancy, I’ll use Balmyard Beauty’s lip and cheek tint and Kora Organics Rose Quartz Highlighter. I’d love to find a mascara that is organic and won’t smear. 

skin care products by a sink

It’s been about 6 months since I’ve been using these skincare products and my skin looks and feels pretty amazing. No more breakouts or dryness and my glow is back. 

There’s something about taking care of my skin that makes me feel grown-up, indulged, and spoiled. Taking the time for a little self-care morning and evening has become a beautiful ritual for me. I haven’t tried any more Goop’s products, because while I’m sure I would love them, my bank account would suffer. Perhaps next year, I’ll allow myself the indulgence of another Goop recommended product, but until then, I’ll enjoy the allowances I’ve given myself to care for my skin.

blond, beautiful woman smilingI would love to know your favorite skincare indulgence that you recommended and can’t (that’s a bit dramatic, but you know, I’m inspired by Gywneth the thespian) live without? 

confessions of a skincare junkie



  1. Julie,
    I love this article! I have also been secretly following Goop off and on and have been wondering about the products and how they work. The lines are coming, dry patches and overall aging process is just inevitable. I also like Khiels products and have been using for about six months now. I really like the clearly correcting dark spot solution, Hydroplumping retexturizing serum, super multi corrective cream and love the butter mask for lips. My skin is more smooth, no more dry patches and lips never chapped! I’m also a fan of Eminence Stone Crop toner hydrating mist, this stuff is great, all natural and smells divine.

    I also like the skin care ritual and doing something for myself and seeing/feeling great results. I’ll let you know if I have any other great finds. ???



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