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My first read of 2020 is Girl Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis. Her previous published works were fiction but GWYF was I believe her first stab at nonfiction. I just finished it today so I wanted to write my review while everything was fresh. All in all, I think it is a solid book.
To be honest, I don’t know how to categorize this book. For some reason, Amazon has it listed under Religion and Spirituality. I strongly disagree with that. It’s not heavily religion based. I hesitate to call it an autobiography even though she does use her real life experiences in every chapter. I’d say it’s more of a autobiographically self help hybrid (if that’s even a thing).
Girl Wash Your Face is set up in sort of a lessons learned fashion. Each chapter is titled a different “lie” that Rachel has told herself that she believes has kept her from living her best life. She details various accounts and situations from her life when those lies have played out, questions the ideology of those lies to bring to her a place of enlightenment and closes each chapter with helpful tips on how to move past those lies.
I honestly enjoyed this style of “self-help”. It wasn’t too motivational or preachy (up until the end). A lot of the lies she told herself, I feel like I could relate to. (Some things are universal as a woman though right?). It felt more like a convo with an auntie or older cousin. I love how she reminds you to take full ownership of your life regardless of the circumstances. She gives advice but knows at the end of the day, you’re gonna do, what you’re gonna do.
Not all of the chapters or “lies” in Girl Wash Your Face applied to me and my life but I tried to take the lessons and apply where needed. Sometimes I felt like she was a little long winded and it made it difficult for me to really pull the meat of what she was saying. But most of the time, she was able to bring it back full circle.
However, I didn’t feel truly connected to Rachel and her story. Maybe I’m just outside of her target demographic. Her book didn’t really invoke any emotion for me. Even when she was describing traumatic events in her own life or things that were triggers for me, it still felt a little shallow and empty. Just grazed over instead of truly deep diving there. I do understand privacy and boundaries but If you’re going to open up, don’t just crack it. Bust that thang wide open.
If you’re not familiar with Rachel Hollis, she’s a woman after my own heart in that she’s a freaking Jill of all trades. She’s an author, a TV personality, a motivational speaker and the founder & CEO of her own media company (on top of being a wife and mom of four). She got her massive following via blogging which I think is amazing.
I really was looking for something that I could apply to my life with chronic illness. Clearly Girl Wash Your Face isn’t about having a chronic illness. To me, that was my greatest takeaway. EVERY BODY goes through things. Some trials are greater than others but it’s what you do about those things and how you allow various situations to mold you that ultimately determine your destination in life.
Do I recommend?
I don’t know what I was expecting when I picked up this book. It’s had so many rave reviews I thought I’d walk away feeling so empowered and uplifted. But honestly I didn’t have an “aha” moment that transformed my way of thinking. Nothing she said surprised me but nothing she said was pointless if you get what I mean.
What I will say is that if you‘re in the market for some easy to digest, female empowerment with a side of relatability, I think Girl Wash Your Face is worth the buy.
Morg Rating – 6.5/10
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