Topic: Beauty Tips

Try the $4 Miss Spa Deep Recovery Pre-Treated Gel Lip Mask for Smoother Lips and a Fun Experience

Published in: Beauty Tips, Guest Post, Lips, Skin Care

Now that summer is here, there are many things I’ve been enjoying that I don’t usually do during winter…like drinking iced coffee without getting strange looks. I also haven’t had a head cold since April, at least, and I’m on the prowl again for the perfect plus-size maxi dress.

But one thing I can never seem to find, no matter the season, is a cure for my dry, flaky lips.

My bag usually has at least two or three different lip balms in it, and I literally hoard them at home, but none of them really, really work. They help, but they aren’t a solution, so now I’m looking for answers outside the realm of everyday lip moisturizers.

I’ve tried exfoliating my lips, but this time I’m going with a more popular approach. I’m testing a mask!

So, face masks are nothing new, as I’m sure you’re aware. Single use sheet masks, in particular, have been extra popular lately (Jen liked this one by Amore Pacific), but have y’all ever tried a lip mask before?

They sound weird, right?

But this affordable little treasure — the Miss Spa Deep Therapy Pre-Treated Gel Lip Mask — was too hard to resist (I’ve seen it at Target for about $3).

This was my first time trying a mask like this, and I was a little surprised when I opened the package for the first time at how thick the mask is.

I assumed it would be a thin sheet mask that would just cover my lips, but as you can see, it’s a little bigger than that.

The Miss Spa Deep Recovery Pre-Treated Gel Lip Mask

I didn’t expect the illustration on the front to be quite so…literal.

The Miss Spa Deep Recovery Pre-Treated Gel Lip Mask

I sort of love the illustrations Miss Spa uses.

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The Avene Cold Cream Ultra-Rich Cleansing Bar Isn’t a Soap at All

Published in: Avene, Beauty Tips, Guest Post

Avene Cold Cream Ultra-Rich Cleansing Bar

Eau Thermale Avene Cold Cream Ultra-Rich Cleansing Bar ($10)

I don’t know about you, but when it comes to skin cleansers, I like mine liquid, but it doesn’t matter if they’re gels, foams, etc. I’m not extra picky, but I just like to put some on a washcloth or rub them into my face with my hands. As far as cleansing bars are concerned, I usually steer clear.

But then I tried the Eau Thermale Avene Cold Cream Ultra-Rich Cleansing Bar

Avene Cold Cream Ultra-Rich Cleansing Bar

“Combining the ultra-rich, softening properties of Cold Cream with the soothing, anti-irritating properties of Avene thermal spring water, this ultra-rich cleansing bar gently cleanses and nourishes the most sensitive skin. Its well-tolerated new formula respects the skin’s natural pH and provides a rich, smooth and lightly fragranced lather. Skin is soft and supple again, its comfort is restored.”

– From the packaging

cold cream, cleanser, cleansing bar, avene,

Eau Thermale Avene Cold Cream Ultra Rich Cleansing Bar ($10)

Let me be clear — this is not soap, and it’s not drying at all.

Ingredients:
sodium cocoyl isethionate, stearic acid, sodium laurate, sodium stearate, paraffin, sodium myristate, water, fragrance, peg-45 palm kernel glycerides, avene thermal spring water, beeswax, bht, c20-40 pareth-10, cetyl alcohol, cetyl phosphate, glyceryl stearate, methylparaben, mineral oil, sodium hydroxide, titatium dioxide, triethanolamine

It’s a deeply moisturizing soap-free cleansing bar that leaves a protecting film (but no greasy or sticky residue) and maintains your skin’s natural pH.

For my temperamental skin, the white beeswax and mineral oil are just the ticket. The bar creates a magnificently rich, creamy lather with a wonderful powdery scent when I rub it into my face and body in the shower.

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Products I Have Completely Used Up! Will I Repurchase Them?

Published in: Beauty Tips, Guest Post, Makeup Tips/How To, Skin Care

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Do you get that intense feeling of satisfaction when you use the last drop of something you’ve been working on for months? It makes me feel like an actual responsible adult who got her money’s worth! If I completely use up a product, it’s usually a testament to how much I love using it…usually.

Rather than chucking my empties into the garbage, I channeled my inner hoarder and kept my trash in a box to take pictures of and show you all. Totally normal!

1. Simple Cleansing Facial Wipes ($5.99 at Ulta)

Simple Cleansing Towlettes

Simple Cleansing Facial Wipes ($5.99 for 25 wipes, available at Ulta)

I’ve gone through an absurd number of these wipes — like, literally more than 20 packs of 25 wipes! I really should collect the empty wrappers to see how many I actually use…

These are my all-time favorite go-to makeup removers. I’ve tried countless different wipes and even micellar water on cotton pads. Some of them are nice, but I always, always, always come back to these.

The actual cloth wipes are so nice and soft and don’t irritate my skin, and the cleanser they’re soaked in is super gentle and doesn’t burn my eyes, but it still does the job and gets off all of my makeup.

Will I repurchase them? Yes, I already have, and I’m quickly burning through my last pack!

2. Pixi Glow Tonic Exfoliating Toner ($15 for 3.4 oz.)

Pixi Glow Tonic

Pixi Glow Tonic ($15 for 3.4 oz.)

Ugh, I hate how fast I go through these toners! I get the smaller, cheaper 3.4-oz. bottle because I feel like I’m being oh, so thrifty, but I fly through them in about three weeks (I use it twice a day).

I really should get the bigger bottle, huh.

I fell in love with this toner a few months ago and have been religiously using it ever since. I like that it’s exfoliating and helps get rid of some of the bumpy, uneven texture I tend to get on my skin. It really does leave my skin super soft and glowing.

I’ve talked about why I think toners are so important in my Pixi Skincare Routine post, but you really should use one. Really.

Will I repurchase? Yes! As soon as I make it back to Target, which is about an hour away from where I live!

I know. Feel sorry for me. 🙁

3. Yes To Tomatoes Acne Clearing Facial Toner ($9.99 for 8.5 oz.)

Yes To Tomatoes Toner

Yes To Tomatoes Acne Clearing Facial Toner ($9.99 for 8.5 oz.)

You know how when you use something and you’re trying to decide what you think about it, but you really don’t know? That’s how I feel about Yes To Tomatoes Acne Clearing Facial Toner…

I picked it up when my skin was acting up and used it off and on for about six months until I finished it.

I really don’t know what to say about this one!

Obviously, it didn’t “wow!” me, but I didn’t hate it either. It did the job and got my skin super clean, but I can’t really remember if it helped me with breakouts or not. My guess is that if I don’t remember, it probably didn’t.

I wouldn’t completely write this one off, though, if you’re looking for something with salicylic acid and witch hazel to keep your pores nice and tight. I do really like the ingredients in this.

Will I repurchase it? Probably not…mostly because I wasn’t wow’d by it.

4. Ole Henrikson Nurture Me Moisturizer ($40)

Ole Henrickson Nurture Me

Ole Henrikson Nurture Me ($40)

I wish I remember the name of the guy who helped me that fateful day in Sephora when I was encouraged to give this moisturizer a try because he changed my life!

OK, that’s a little much, but I love this moisturizer so much. I went in looking for something, anything, to help calm the redness that I was experiencing on my skin and came out with this.

First off, I have to tell you how good it smells, because if something smells amazing, that makes me love it 100 times more. It legit smells like the most delicious orange Creamcicles… My mouth waters every time I use it.

Of course, the smell isn’t why I use it, though. Not only does it soothe my skin and relieve the redness, but it makes my skin feel so smooth and comfortable. There are no massive, angry breakouts, no redness, no rough texture. My skin is happy!

Will I repurchase? Absolutely! As soon as all the bills are paid and everyone has what they need, I WILL buy my magic orange Creamsicle again.

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:)

General Tips and Product Recommendations for Oily Skin

Published in: Beauty Tips, Guest Post, Skin Care

Oily Skin Tips Products

Having oily skin, blotting paper is like an extension of my hand, LOL!

After battling oily skin my whole life (well, since my teens, more like), I think I’ve finally come to terms with it. For the way I see it, you just can’t win a battle against oily skin, so the sooner you realize and accept it, the better.

I mean, think about it. If you have oily skin, it means that your sebaceous glands produce more oil than normal… Do you really think you can change the amount of sebum you produce just by applying something on top of your skin? I don’t know about you, but I personally don’t think that’s possible.

You can use products containing oil-absorbing ingredients that do help a little, but if you really have oily skin, nothing will keep you shine-free all day. What I try to do is use products that won’t make me oilier, which unfortunately, in my experience, is not as easy as it sounds, especially because many products specifically formulated for oily skin on me have opposite effects than they promise.

But luckily, after about 15 years of trial and error, I can now say that I’m finally satisfied with my skincare regimen, and today I’d like to give you a few general tips and product recommendations that I hope may be beneficial to at least some of you.

At which point I’ll insert the usual disclaimer: I’m not a dermatologist, and all the advice and recommendations in this post are solely based on my personal experience. Obviously, what works for me might not work for you.

That being said, if you have oily skin and are not satisfied with your skincare, the following tips and products might inspire you to change something in your routine that will hopefully help keep your skin under control.

Cleanse with gentle, yet effective products

Tata Harper Purifying Cleanser

I use the Tata Harper Purifying Cleanser in the morning to wash off any excess oil and dirt that have accumulated on my skin overnight

You’ve probably heard it a million times already, but I’ll tell you for the million-and-oneth: cleansing properly is essential to keep your skin healthy. As an oily-skinned gal, it’s important you find the right products that get rid of any excess oil without being too stripping.

The Tata Harper Purifying Cleanser fits the bill perfectly. It’s not one of those cleansers you remove your makeup with (for that I love my Clinique Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm – been using it for years!), but it’s great in the morning (which is my favorite time to use it) or as a second cleanse at night.

Opt for an alcohol-free toner

Clinique Mild Clarifying Lotion

The Clinique Mild Clarifying Lotion is alcohol-free and contains salicylic acid, a chemical exfoliant that helps prevent any blemishes

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I Haven’t Used My Acne Medication in Four Weeks: Here’s What I’ve Been Using Instead

Published in: Beauty Tips, Boots, Guest Post, Skin Care

boots-no7-skincare-regimen

From L-R: Boots No7 Youthful Replenishing Facial Oil, Protect and Perfect Day/Night Cream, Protect and Perfect Intense Eye Cream, and Youthful Eye Serum

If you’ve been reading my posts here, you know that I’ve really struggled with adult acne, and especially with being comfortable in my own skin. Recently with my dermatologist prescribed medications, I finally felt that I had found a routine that worked for me, but the products often left my skin dry, red and, at times, very itchy. Sometimes, after using these medications, applying different products and makeup on my skin would also cause irritations.

Then I found the Boots No7 Protect and Perfect and Boots No7 Youthful lines, and now I think I’ve finally figured out exactly what my skin’s problem is.

It’s moisture. I actually need more of it.

I was a little wary of all of the moisture in these products. After all, I can be sort of an oil slick, and I’m always afraid of waking up in the morning to discover that the products I applied the night before haven’t sunk into my skin, and now I have a giant grease face.

But these products didn’t just work well; they actually improved my skin over time. On the packaging they promise better looking skin in four weeks, so that’s how much time I gave them.

Let’s start with the Boots No7 Youthful Replenishing Facial Oil. This is the product I start with every night before bed, applying it to a freshly washed and cleansed face.

boots-no7-youthful-replenishing-oil

Boots No7 Youthful Replenishing Oil ($22.99 for 1 oz.)

Ingredients
Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Rosa Moschata Seed Oil, Isostearyl Isostearate, Alcohol Denat,. Tocopheryl Acetate, Parfum (Fragrance), Isopropyl Myristate, Retinyl Palmitate, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Salicyloyl Phytosphingosine, Tocopherol

This non-greasy blend of jojoba and rosehip seed oils sinks into my skin in but a moment. I usually concentrate it around the areas where I’m driest and red, like the apples of my cheeks; the sides of my nose, where I have some broken capillaries; and the areas on my chin where I have some acne scarring.

There’s also a little warning on the back that literally says, “May make surfaces slippery,” and they aren’t kidding. The bottle is glass, and I almost dropped it on my bathroom floor several times. In spite of that fact, though, it makes a wonderful precursor to…

protect-perfect-night-day-cream

T-B: Boots No7 Protect and Perfect Night and Day Cream ($22.99, 1.6 oz.)

The Boots No7 Protect and Perfect Night Cream, which is my follow-up to the Replenishing Oil. It blends in seamlessly, and has a clean scent that doesn’t irritate my skin. As far as the Day Cream goes, I wasn’t sure how it would work out, but I was pleasantly surprised. Most of the time when I use moisturizers with SPF, they tend to clump up when I try to put makeup on top of them, but that isn’t the case here. It dries nice and matte.

Night cream ingredients
Aqua (Water, Eau), Glycerin, PPG-15 Stearyl Ether, Sorbitan Stearate, Demethicone, Butrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter, Beurre De Karite), Ethylhexyl Stearate, Cetyl Alcohol, Polyacrylamide, C13-14 Acid Glycol Ester, Dimethiconol, Butylene Glycol, Parfum (Fragrance), Sucrose Cocoate, Methlparaben, Carbomer, Laureth-7, Ethylparaben, Dipropylene Glycol, Retinyl Palmitate, Xantham Gum, Ascorbyl Gluoside, Tetrasodium EDTA, Potassium Hydroxide, Lupinus Albus Seed Extract, Dimethylmethoxy Chromanol, Phyllanthus Emblica Fruit Extract, Polysorbate 20, Gingko Biloba Leaf Extratc, BHT, Tocopherol, Butylparaben, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Silica, Propylparaben, Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7

Day cream ingredients
Avobenzone (3.0%), Octinoxate (6.0%), Octisalate (2.5%), Aqua (Water),Glycerin,C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate,Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter,Dimethicone,Isononyl Isononanoate,Cetearyl Alcohol,C18-36 Acid Glycol Ester,Polyglyceryl-3 Methylglucose Distearate, Phenoxyethanol, Polyacrylamide,Sorbitan Stearate,Mica,Polysorbate 20,Alcohol Denat.,C13-14 Isoparaffin, Dimethiconol, Butylene Glycol,Methylparaben,Potassium Cetyl Phosphate,Ethylparaben,Parfum (Fragrance), Laureth-7, Retinyl Palmitate,Sucrose Cocoate, Dipropylene Glycol,Xanthan Gum,Ascorbyl Glucoside,Tetrasodium EDTA,Citric Acid,Lupinus Albus Seed Extract,Dimethylmethoxy Chromanol, Carbomer,Phyllanthus Emblica Fruit Extract,Potassium Hydroxide,Ginkgo Biloba Leaf Extract, BHT, Tocopherol, Butylparaben, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Propylparaben, Isobutylparaben,Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7,Cl 77891 (Titanium Dioxide).

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