Posted by: Chelsea Novak | June 24, 2002

Some thoughts about work

During our evening of girl talk and philosophy, Kari made a really good point about work and how she feels badly that she doesn’t have enough work to fill the entire 9 to 5 of her day. (Well more like 11 to 6 or 8 to 3). And I understand that. When I first started working, I got so much done right away and people were so amazed at my productivity, but then I ran out of tasks and became somewhat like the rest. My job is such that it get busy in spurts. The spring and fall are always insanely busy, but the summer and winter make me feel useless. I know it all balances out somewhere, but I feel odd.

Needless to say, I’m experiencing some serious down time. And it’s just making me lazy. When I’m really busy and the adrenaline in pumping I’m happily having 10 hour days and running around at a break-neck speed. Am I a weirdo? Well, yes, but can I work effectively in the working world. My boss seems really happy with my performance, so I guess this is all my problem with me. I just loved doing so much and being able to use so many different skills. It was such a rush. Hopefully my blah downtime won’t adversely affect my chances of doing that again.

Most of you know that one of my side-jobs is being a freelance lifestyle columnist. It appears that the section I’m writing for is undergoing a revamp. This is good, as the survival topic has pretty much been exhausted. Rumour has it that the section is now going to be divided into different topics – Health & Fitness, Kids stuff, Shopping and (ta da) Beauty. I’m going to go out on a limb and hope that I’ll be the author of many of these and do a dance of joy that I can FINALLY write about that which I love. Beauty. New products on the local market, spas, salons, you name it. Sometimes I think this is what I was born to do If someone was ever destined to work for In Style it was me. Of course I can’t afford the clothes in there at present, but I use the beauty bible well.

You should see my palm pilot. It has a whole memo category devoted to beauty – new products I want to try are divided into categories by brand name, inventories of what I have so that I don’t duplicate when shopping, a wish list (which is going to be a big part of my Xmas list this year) and then holiday notes for entertaining. Beauty isn’t just about making yourself beautiful, but also making your immediate environment look and feel beautiful too. Then there’s my super binder, where I’ve collected printout’s from the web, torn out pages from magazines with things I’d like to remember (usually outfits) and instructions for make-up application, hair styles and personal grooming. The binder is also filled with printout’s from Martha Stewart on-line with all kinds of housekeeping and cleaning tips. I’m a monster with these things and I have SO much fun with it.

Sure this stuff isn’t for everyone, and people look at me like a nut when I get talking about it. It’s a passion. My boss Kelly just started laughing at me when I started explaining the Alpha Hydroxy Acid phenomenon. She was laughing in kind of a “why on earth to you know this, and of course you would know this because you know things like this” way. My close friends have figured out that I’m like an idiot savant when it comes to dealing with beauty issues. If I had the resources, I could help women and men feel better about their appearance and not feel overwhelmed by products and silliness. I know that not everyone loves this stuff as I do, and in fact finds it irritating beyond belief (like the other women in my family). So I do the leg work for them and give them the solutions they’re looking for without the fuss.

Okay, so I’ve clearly talked about this way too long. It seriously excites me, so sometimes I get a little out of hand. If you, the reader, have any beauty questions email me and I’ll help you fix it. It would be a great pleasure. Otherwise, here are some links I highly recommend.

In Style – Check out the beauty 123 section or steal this look (I’d love to be as cool at Nataile Portman and have a lipstick inspired by me and then actually use said lipstick in a Star Wars movie. There is a MAC lipstick named Chelsea, but I’m certain that it was inspired by the arty/Goth scene in Chelsea London and all the Chelsea Girls, not me. It looked okay when I wore it, but not so much my style, or at least not my style since I gave up the princess o’ darkness look).

M.A.C. – Possibly the best make-up line in the world and Canadian to boot. I started using this stuff when I was about 14 and in terms of foundations, eyeshadows and everything lip wise have not found a superior line.

These companies are hands down the best for skin care. Clinique for normal or combination skin or if you’re a guy. Mario Badescu from NYC is one of the best for problem or sensitive skin. Clarins is possibly the master for older or aging skin. Their hand cream can work miracles. And finally Kehils , again for most skin types. I’m looking forward to getting to Holt Renfrew in Toronto where they sell Kehils. Apparently their shampoos and lip balm are to die for.

Finally, Chanel. I’ve been bonkers for this company since I was a teen. Luxurious and rich, their products make me squeal with glee each time I use them. I honestly don’t think I would want to live without their eyeliner and the smell of their lipstick is one of my fondest memories of my adolescence.

I know this will sound silly, but I generally try and buy cosmetics from companies that start with the letter C. Of course if there’s a great product like Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream or Lancome Defencilis Mascara, then I’ll buy in. I guess I’m just very lucky that some of my favourite lines start with C. The reason I do this? Everything is instantly monogrammed. I noticed this years ago when I was still using Cover Girl products and was like, “hey, those are my initials. Of course I don;t use Cover Girl anymore as it’s generally as good as it costs and I’m a brand snob.

Another great link is Gloss which is like an on-line make-up super store. Perhaps tomorrow we’ll talk about brushes.

Okay, done now.

HRH

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