"I've realised my most significant flaw and it's starting to get very expensive."

In hindsight, I should never have walked in there without a pre-game strategy. This much I now know.

Because when you have a backbone as weak – and crushable – as a packet full of potato crisps, you forget how costly your own meek, agreeable nature can be. Literally.

This week, when I decided that maybe I should get a facial on my day off because I have always been invested in my skin (??) and definitely have money to throw around (??), I realised my haemorrhaging bank account had very little to do with the bills coming in, and much more with my propensity to smile and swipe whenever someone suggests I definitely need a pet rabbit with three legs. Or, in short, whenever someone tries to sell me something I absolutely don’t need and I don’t have the strength to tell them I absolutely don’t need it.

Here’s how I came to this conclusion.

On Monday, I walked into the skincare place (not its actual, nor technical, name) to be greeted by a facialist who was quite lovely. I filled out a form about my skin (yes, it has a little redness, yes, I’d like it to be less dry) and walked on in to the room.

I had already made my first mistake, you see. I told her I had things I wanted to fix. She now had something to sell me.

I laid down, she inspected my skin. I was a little red, she said. And a bit dry, too? Clever lady. She read my form. She began suggesting ways to fix it. Gels. Creams. Serums.

She hadn’t even touched my face yet and I had lost.

Loser etc.

Because although I had gone in with the sole intention of relaxing for, say, an hour, I spent the proceeding 60 minutes working out how I was going to tell her I did not want to buy any of the products she was going to try and sell me at the end.

Maybe I could joke about being a poor uni student? Maybe I could tell her I owned all of the above? Maybe I could tell her I have an appointment and need to run straight there from my facial. Like, immediately.


Maybe I could have said all of the above, if I hadn't already revealed I worked full-time, hardly owned an item of skincare and that my afternoon consisted of, well, nothing.

I love myself.

60 minutes of stressing, analysing and stupid hypotheticals later, I was back at the counter, oooooh-ing and aaaah-ing at all seven products she'd chosen for me to buy.

Yes I want them all! Yes I can afford it! Where have these products been all my life?! Naht.

Zoe Foster Blake's beauty advice for busy women. Post continues after audio.

Short of lighting a flare for the emergency crews to come and save me, there was little I could do. I could say no, of course, but just kidding I could never do that, why would I ever do that?

Before you shake your head and consider me totally hopeless - which I am, but you don't need to know that - I DID say no.

To five things......




I just accidentally walked out with two. A $49 mask I do not know how to use, and something else I can't even spell ($39).

I am not even angry at my lovely facialist because she's the nice one doing her job. And I am not even annoyed at you, nice reader, for judging from afar.

Because I know you've been there too. At the charity stall where they ask for a little bit extra. At Mecca where they suggest just a few more foundation brushes will change your life. At the counter of a retail store where they encourage you to buy a $2 water bottle, too. At the supermarket when the second packet of chips is half price after your purchase of the first.

We're all losers. Or winners, with a little less in our back accounts.

It's all about perspective... I guess...?

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