Beautiful Sanity…an oxymoron?

Before I explain to you how the quest for beauty can coexist with sanity and the simple life, let’s do a short review of past ‘lessons’, shall we? (Sorry….but between having a large family and homeschooling for the past 23 years, I’m definitely into “mastery” – which means I hate to waste my time teaching you something new when you’ve already forgotten your past assignments!)

Previously we talked about the importance of moisturizing your neck – and not stopping at your face. Upon further reflection (literally :), I should have admonished you to keep moving south and moisturize the top of your chest, also. If you start doing that now I’ll give you extra credit on this pop quiz.

Next, we learned about inner beauty and how we only waste time trying to put a pretty face on a bad attitude. That was a hard lesson, but I think you aced it because it made so much sense.

And lastly, I gave you a lecture about heel care and Vaseline. Deduct five points if you don’t remember where I told you I lived. And start paying better attention, will you!

….Seriously, my fellow students of Chicness – I do worry about how whether we’re really retaining the mega-doses of information we’re exposed to today. We’d be better off it we would focus on applying what we learn before we go in search of new information. In this age of substantial technology, with so much expertise at our fingertips, it’s important not to get so overloaded you shut down. We know so much – but we apply so little. The time you spend learning is wasted unless it somehow affects your life for the better.

And speaking of changing your life for the better, how about paring down more than just your information-gathering? Most of us are in pursuit of a simpler life. And that simplicity is suited to beauty and fashion, too. A crowded closet or a crammed make-up drawer is not conducive to sanity, joy, and the pursuit of happiness.

But how best to figure out what we really need and use?After all, some of us have spent the equivalent of our children’s college education in hair care products alone!

I’m pretty good at decluttering (this is a survival skill for a mom of 11) and have always had a rule of Something In = Something Out, but ‘stuff’ still seems to pile up. I know for a fact that my pore-minimizers are multiplying while I sleep. Getting dressed, applying make-up, and doing my hair becomes an exercise in decision-making and confusion. So recently, at the end of each day I take the outfit I’ve worn and put it into one of three places. (1) Back into the closet, because I liked the way I looked in it; I was comfortable; and it needed no mending. (2) In a separate place in my closet to await it’s final destiny – sort of like Apparel Purgatory, or (3) in the Goodwill bag (which is heavy and black and plastic, so I don’t see it again and ‘reconnect’). At the end of the month, I either redeem my clothes from purgatory or they go to Plastic Bag Hell. I would rather have 5-7 outfits that I can wear with confidence and enjoyment – than to face a closet full of clothes that are “adequate”.

I’m doing the same thing with my make-up and hair products. When I wear a lipstick that feels good and looks good, I put it into a certain part of my cosmetic drawer. If I wear one that cakes up, needs to be reapplied too often,or isn’t the right color, I trash it. At the end of the month, I usually realize I am wearing the same 3-4 shades and I can ditch the rest.

Do the same with hair products – or if you change your style often (straight one day, curly another), then at least have one place where you store the oft-used products and put the rest in a place you don’t have to see daily. We’re aiming for visual peace, which equates to a clearer, saner mind.

Keep only what you use and love. It’s simple. And that’s the way you want your beauty and fashion routine to be.

Peace, baby!

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About Jo-Lynne

Written by Jo-Lynne Shane, a professional lifestyle blogger, brand advocate and community manager. Named one of Nielsen’s 50 Most Influential Women in Social Media, Jo-Lynne is best known for her award-winning lifestyle blog, Musings of a Housewife, where she dishes up an assortment of food, fashion, fitness and family travel. She has been featured on, Southern Living Magazine, and in Cosmopolitan Magazine. In the local sphere, Jo-Lynne facilitates the vibrant networking group Philly Social Media Moms, providing community, support and education for 200 area bloggers. Jo-Lynne lives and works from home in the suburbs of Philadelphia with her husband of 17 years, three lively children and one extremely spoiled shih tzu named Savannah.


  1. Ooooh, you’re speaking my language. I love to declutter and rid my closets and drawers of unnecessary junk. I like this system. Very efficient.

  2. Thanks for the refresher. I have been moisturizing my neck thanks to you, the attitude thing is something I work on, and I forgot about the Vaseline, so it was good to be reminded.

  3. Not only do I remember where you live … I know your phone number! Do I get extra credit for that?
    I love this idea — not so much for the hair + makeup products (although I did throw out probably 15 bottles of half-used lotion before we moved — what the heck?), but for my closet! I have started making a list of outfits that I love after I’ve worn them, for those days when I stand in front of my closet + can’t see any good combinations.
    All that to say, I don’t have a plan of action for the outfits I DON’T feel great in, so I am going to start using yours! Thanks!

  4. I do clean out my closet every season. However, I am having a hard time parting with an eye-shadow combo that Clinique is no longer carrying. I need to release it because it is old, but it made my eyes look fabulouse, dahling.

  5. This idea of organizing your closet according to outfits you loved, need mending , etc. is amazing!! Currently mine is organized by items and I end up wearing my go-to faves cause it’s so packed I don’t know what I have! My closet is filled to brim, which is an understatement. It definitely needs a clean-up, my issue is that I end up bringing back old items into new modern outfits, so I feel like everything should stay. I’m a pack-rat. BUT it’s time to let go of the old stuff to make room for the new!! My cosmetics also need to be cleaned out and this technique will be great!

    Check out for beauty and fashion products and tips!!

  6. What a lovely blog! Great advice about the outfits, I’m working on my wardrobe next. I have my make-up almost sorted but I’m such a beauty product junkie!