Musings of a Long-term ‘Lushie’

Thinking back to my previous post, ‘The Lush Dimension’, I feel I did not accurately portray the extent of my Lush Cosmetics ‘addiction’/’obsession’/’insert adjective here’. When I say I love Lush, I mean I love Lush. I have been a ‘Lushie’ for around 13 years and for the majority of those years I have not used any other brand product within the bathing/shower category. From bath bombs to FUN and shampoo bars, the chances are I’ve tried it at least once. If you ever need any information on older products, I’m your gal. I remember the first three products that really made me fall in love with Lush. Those products were: Ruby Red Slippers, Lemony Flutter and the Christmas Party Ballistic. Whilst I believe it is undeniable that each product made by Lush is an individual piece of fabulously scented luxury, the products alone would have been insufficient to reel me in; as I follow a strict rule with regards to only using cruelty free cosmetic products. Thus, it is the company’s ethics on animal testing and frequent campaigning to raise awareness of a variety of topical and charitable causes which have kept me ploughing my money into their products.

When I think back to my ‘early’ days as a Lushie, I cringe at the way I disposed of many products I received as part of a gift set. The main reason I disposed of them (including gifting some to others) was because I did not know how to use them – reading instructions has never been my forte! For example, in a ‘Very Berry’ gift set I received one Christmas (2008, I think) there was a Happy Blooming bath melt and due to its texture, I assumed it was yet another massage bar.[1] As such, I binned it. I am ashamed to admit this, as well as the fact that my Rub, Rub, Rub shower gel along with many massage bars also met the same fate. However, not long after the Happy Blooming disposal, I started to burrow away Lush products I was not a fan of, as I could not bear the thought of my collection depleting. Burrowing is a different action to hoarding, I swear. To date I have a large box in my attic which is filled with products such as, Glitter Bug massage bar and its corresponding body lotion. Some items from the attic have been brought down for me and I will write about them when I can.

Back to my ramblings about my love of Lush Cosmetics. Some have said that I have a ‘problem’ when it comes to Lush and perhaps they are correct. However, my heart disagrees with this. As despite my compulsion to purchase more and more of their products, there is a much deeper rooted reason behind my collection. This reason I touched upon within my previous post. When I first started DBT, I felt so lost and had not once treated myself well. I still do not most of the time, predominantly due to feeling worthless and undeserving. This in culmination with the fact that I was never taught the skills to validate myself meant that even if I thought I was deserving of kind treatment, I never knew how to act in a positive self-preserving/validating manner. I still do not treat myself in such a positive way the majority of the time. However, thanks to the mindfulness and ‘self-soothe’ skills taught to me in DBT, at least around 1% of the time I can partake in something that lifts my mood. This is where Lush comes in, discussed below.

There were times I periodically turned up to my therapy group carrying new Lush goodies. At the start of each session we would do 10 minutes of mindfulness. During which time all I (and a few other group members) could smell was the contents of my bag throughout the room. It was a good few months into DBT when I finally started to grasp the mindfulness and ‘self-soothe’ skills. I had tried for months to discover something to help me in times of distress, when finally, I made a mental connection to my newly purchased bath bombs. From this point I practiced my skills using Lush bath bombs, bubble bars and their newly released Bubblegum lip scrub. I even became well known in my DBT group as the girl who rarely speaks but loves Lush. My fellow group members were the first proof that I was a Lushie in the broadest sense. As evidenced by the fact the majority followed my lead and purchased Bubblegum lip scrubs and other products from the local Lush store. I will stop here before I ramble too much more. Besides, the goal of this blog is to provide a positive vibe, even when days are dark. As such, I will keep the negative aspects of my conditions at bay.

It could be said that the aforementioned mental connection to Lush products has become an emotional reliance on my part. However, I argue that this is not an absolutely negative thing. As no matter whether one suffers from mental health issues or not, anything that can bring a period of release even for a short time can only be positive in the long run. I have various mental health issues that affect me daily and there has only ever been one stable element in my journey – Lush products. Thus, my love of Lush is multidimensional and therefore, far more complex than I can articulate. I confused myself trying to condense my relationship with Lush. Hence, why it has taken me at least four months to try and write this piece.[2] If you have got to the end of this piece which is on the essay periphery – Thank you! I really do appreciate it. I tried my best to shorten the story.

 

[1] I am not a fan of them, although they usually smell amazing

[2] As with many of my blog writings and upcoming pieces, I started them at least a year ago and it has taken me a very long time to construct them. I also wanted a decent amount to upload within a short period of time, so as my blog did not look too sparse as it developed.

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