That Glass Of Wine...

By Minji

“It's pretty clear wine can wreak havoc on your skin – both directly (dehydration), and also indirectly through food cravings, associated late nights, bad sleep, etc… However, despite my obsession with skincare, I don’t ever want to give up wine. Instead of considering cutting off wine cold turkey, I dug deeper to think about the intentions behind that glass...”

As we wrap up our first ever photo shoot for SeoulofSkin, all I desire is a glass of wine. Actually, “desire” is probably not the right word – it’s too weak to adequately describe my urgent need to wind down with a drink after this exhausting first undertaking (I’m not a model… just my dog Moo).  I always thought models were lucky with glamorous lives…but this photo shoot stuff turned out to be mentally stressful and physically exhausting. 

Knowing I might (again, “would” is probably the better word here) feel this way, I had chilled a bottle to perfection (just like I do with my skincare fridge!).  As soon as I had put the last prop away, reorganized the house and changed into my pjs, I poured myself a hefty glass.  Then another. Then I binge ate a pizza, linguine pasta and plenty of bread. 

It felt so good in the moment, but I woke up feeling even worse than the exhaustion I had felt at the end of the photo shoot. Why do I do this to myself…is it worth it?  And what is it doing to my skin…!

Skin talk first, always.  Wine 101 – wine has alcohol in it, and consuming alcohol dehydrates the skin. This means your skin will likely appear less plump and dewy the next morning. If you’re genetically predisposed to rosacea, wine could also trigger flare-ups and cause other skin problems.  The killer for me is that wine gives me the munchies (especially for salty savory food) and inevitably leads to a swollen and bloated face the morning after. 

It's pretty clear wine can wreak havoc on your skin – both directly (dehydration), and also indirectly through food cravings, associated late nights, bad sleep and making us too tired to go through our nighttime skincare rituals, etc.  Let’s not even discuss the health benefits of wine…. Because I think deep down inside, we all know that we can get those supposed benefits in other ways besides wine. 

If you thought at this point, I was going to make the case for giving up wine, don't worry, I wouldn't do that to you or myself.  Despite my obsession with skincare, I don’t ever want to cut off wine entirely.  Wine has been linked to some of my happiest moments in life.  For me, wine in moderation can augment a perfect moment and make it magical at times.  So instead of considering giving up wine for good, I dug deeper to think about the intentions behind that glass.

Have you thought about the intentions behind your drinking? After some thought, I found that I generally drink for two main reasons.  One, to add to a joyous moment – like, when I’m at a party with loved ones or on a bucket list vacation.

Second, I also drink to mask or numb negative emotions.  For example, the post photo shoot drinking. I felt wiped out after an experience that took me out of my comfort zone and grabbed for a quick fix to take away those negative feelings.

I’m realizing, with 2020 right around the corner, I want to be stronger.  My happy drinking (which is worth it despite some negative effects on my skin) will continue in moderation, but I vow this morning, with my puffy, dried out and bloated face, that I will give up the negative drinking.  I can find other more productive and sustainable ways to deal with difficult situations and complex emotions (meditation, yoga, maskitation… just plain old time?).  

I’ve managed to resist the thoughtless quick fix approach when it comes to my skincare routine and it's paid off in my long-term journey.  There’s no reason why I shouldn’t try to expand this philosophy to my wine drinking as well!