Welcome to FaceTime, a segment in which we interrogate the beauty whims, zit-melting strategies and self-care views of cool girls around the world. Taking the stage today is Raenee Sydney (@itsrainybaby), an actual Calvin Klein underwear model, real-life angel and eczema sufferer. A real all-rounder, one might say. Now, let's begin...
How do you spend your time, professionally and otherwise?
My week never really looks the same as I juggle quite a few things in my day-to-day life. I work in a clothing store 4 days a week, make ceramics on my days off and model part-time.
What’s your skin *like*?! What kind of zits do you typically get?
I grew up between Malaysia and Singapore before moving to Sydney 12 years ago. During my childhood and early teen years I had really bad eczema all over my body—including my face—making it super dry then slightly weepy. My grandparents tried all different types of holistic remedies to 'cure' it, but things only subsided when I moved to Australia—bless the beautiful air we breathe down here! So being in Sydney now I luckily have pretty good skin; only getting super dry depending on the weather. I do get zits, but mainly when I'm stressed and especially when TOM (time of month) comes to visit. But because I never get them, when I do, they're deep cystic ones that stay for at least a week. Hello, KILLA patch!
Approaches to dealing with zits?
Well, my boyfriend says that if theres a whitehead on it, pop it! Which is probably not very sound advice? But whenever they do seem to be appearing, I always exfoliate, moisturize and then mask (and pray it'll be gone by the morning). I also tend to mask my face with a skin peel when I feel one brewing for an extra in-depth cleanse. Is there anything you do or don’t do!) that contributes to getting zits? I probably cleanse and moisturize my skin way too much which doesn't help. I can't help but also touch them constantly when I feel one brewing. But when I have one, I never wear make up on top! Which I think is a super important. You have to let it ~breathe~ or it'll never really heal, I believe.
True or false? When it comes to zits, prevention is better than treatment. Why and how?
True! Because why walk around with a painful red swell on your face, when you could've prevented it from being there in the first place? Knowing how your skin reacts to the skincare/make up products you use I think is super important. And also drinking a lot of water to keep the skin cells plump and hydrated. Dumbest thing you’ve ever done to a zit? I had a pretty small but deep zit that wouldn't go away for ages. So I ended up painting it black with my eyeliner and passing it off as a *beauty mark* (which was met with odd looks).
#SELFCARE: A futile millennial buzzword or something you practice with sincerity?
Sincerity! (/^.^)/ love yourself and be confident in the skin you're in and you will truly shine! I believe that #selfcare translates into anything from sitting at home with a face mask, to eating what you want and trying to live your best goddamn life.
Routines, products, tips and tricks please.
Sheet masks are always a good option. With all the kawaii options you can get from Asian beauty stores and online, it makes the whole process so much less boring and the cleanup is easy. Whenever I can afford to splash out, I find the whole process of caring for my face exciting as I feel like ~luxury~. I also recently purchased the Mario Badescu Rose face mist which, in this Australian sun, has really helped to freshen my face up.
Do you use social media to get/give beauty *knowledge*?
I try to stay off social media as much as I can, so unfortunately not! I'd rather read online blogs and forums if I'm researching something, otherwise I know I'll get stuck in the warp that is Instagram. But If I'm looking to buy a new product, I'll tend to look at the hashtags related to the product to see 'real' reviews.
Have you ever bought an item because of its aesthetic appeal rather than its efficacy?!
I was super intrigued by GlamGlow's #glittermask, Gravitymud which is a peel-off mask with glitter. It's super expensive so I went into Mecca and requested a sample. It's actually really good! But I think the $90 price tag is a bit stern to make you look like you're wearing the galaxy on your face for a couple of minutes. Also it has glitter bits which aren't super eco-friendly :'(
More tips for acne prone or sensitive skin? Here you go!