At some point in the last 5ish years I've been working on this blog I realized that I needed some ground rules to help me define more accurately the gut feeling that drives the content I wanted to to publish. But as my brilliant husband pointed out, I very rarely mention them here. So in lieu of what I'm trying not to think of as "negativity week" or "dark thoughts Dena blog takeover" I thought you'd appreciate seeing them written out, and hopefully come to realize that while this blog is chock full of love, my devotion is both priceless and hard won... For beauty products.

As for why it took me so long to revisit this post. Honestly, I don't know! I have a pretty stock template I use for email, but I think what was holding me back is my blog vanity. I could not figure out what images to go with this post! Blogging is hard, you guys.

Anyways, a special shout out to the Kat Von D Saint & Sinner samples I got from influenster (aka my source for free stuff, more on that later.) If they don't make sense in this contest just imagine a very sexy dumb person trying to figure out what to do with a sweet smelling bottle of mystery liquid. PS: The perfumes themselves actually smell great, albeit hard to define  and surprisingly subtle (not what I associate with KVD.) I especially love Saint, which is a semi-sweet, light, airy concoction that outshines her muskier, but still subtle sister.

But I digress, on to the list.

1) I do not sell content. Not posts. Not paid reposts if listicles or click bait. No ads. Your trust is priceless and therefore my blog is written with the purest of intentions, knowing that you might use me when you make consumer decisions. Also for your spammers out there, I wrote that template you're using, at least take the time to fill in the blanks. Dear Leo with Cancer, I recently read and liked your post "Leo with Cancer." We would like to offer you $50 to post our article on... STOP. No, no, no. I do use affiliate links, and deeply appreciate when you click through my blog to make a purchase. Because I always try to present you guys with the most effective and inexpensive products I make pennies, but it helps people take me seriously. Your trust is everything to me.

2) I test rigorously.  This means different things for different products. Skincare I typically will not write about for at least two weeks, the time it takes for my face to decide if it's going to wig out on me or not. Unless it's something that promises instant results (like a mask) then I want to see a measurable difference right away. For color products, I usually test in iphone photos, iphone flash photos, my pro camera, and some kind of outdoor activity (even if it's just walking the dog) to see durability, how it fades, and what it smells like when it interacts with my body heat.

3) I try really hard not to go negative. If you're a company or brand that wants to send me something I am absolutely honored. I will not guarantee a review, especially a good one. I will not sign on to be a "partner" if I've never tried it. If I cant get a two week supply to test I will add it to my very long list of products I can sometimes be lured into purchasing.

4) I buy most of my products myself. It helps me connect with the financial burden I'm asking of you. There are exceptions. I've been knosn to are when I shamelessly sample from Sephora. I'm also VIB Rouge (more samples!) and even though I pay for it I do love what I get in Sephora Play box. do love getting sent amazing new products, but I'm a stickler for rules so I always disclose that they were sent or gifted to me. If you ever wonder if I was "paid" to write about something the answer is no. If you ever wonder how I get so many things to try, I get sent great goodie bags sometimes when the universe smiles on me. I love them so, especially when there are good things in there I can write about. And then there's  influenster.  If you follow my insta you have probably seen this horrible, internety name for what is actually a really cool service. They partner with brands and you agree to review in exchange for tons of stuff from them. Some of it not awesome. In those situations, I will be honest and give negative feedback. If I like a product I'm sent but I don't LOVE LOVE LOVE it, I probably won't write about that either. Your trust is worth everything to me.

Any other questions? I try to respond to every email and dm on instagram that doesn't end up in a spam filter. In fact, if I don't respond try me in a different way (like commenting on a picture.) Some days you guys give me a reason to live. Thank you for your trust in me, and for the way you have my back. I am so so lucky to have internet friends like you.