Section: Skincare & Fragrance

5 Hair and Skin Care Products I Currently Can’t Live Without

Published in: Guest Post, Hair, Skin Care

Best Hair and Skin Care Products

Dove Advanced Regenerative Nourishment Serum-in-Oil ($5.99), Ponds Wet Cleansing Towelettes in Evening Soothe ($5.49), Yes To Tomatoes Detoxifying Charcoal Cleanser ($9.99), KMS California Stay Dry Xtreme Hairspray ($19.50), and Yes to Tomatoes Detoxifying Charcoal Mud Mask ($15.99)

I spent a few lonely days this month keeping myself occupied while my boyfriend was out of the country for work. While he was away, I tested some new products and, of course, I had my cats and friends for company, and not to mention you lovely readers!

I thought it was high time to share some of the hair and skin care products I’ve been absolutely loving lately, so here they are. A lot of these are things I didn’t necessarily expect to like, but now I’m singing their praises.

1. Dove Advanced Regenerative Nourishment Serum-in-Oil

When Dove Advanced Regenerative Nourishment Serum-in-Oil ($5.99) caught my eye, I was interested…but I wasn’t convinced I actually needed it. I only wash my thin, often flat hair once or twice a week to avoid excess oil, so adding more oil to my hair wasn’t something I was inclined to do. But it has actually helped.

The pump dispenses the perfect amount for my hair!

One pump dispenses a perfect amount!

Normally I use about one pump, and then I flip my hair upsidedown and massage that through my ends — but only my ends, and maybe to around the middle of the length of my hair, but never to the roots.

That’s been the key to not having the oil increase the oil already atop my head.

My ends do tend to get a little brittle at times, and Dove Advanced Regenerative Nourishment Serum uses a mixture of palm, coconut, sweet almond, and sunflower seed oils. Oddly enough, it actually does leave my ends feeling light and fluffy.

2. KMS California Dry XTreme Hairspray

I don’t have a ride-or-die hairspray, so I usually bounce from brand to brand. KMS wasn’t a brand I’d previously heard of before, but now thanks to KMS California Dry XTreme Hairspray ($19.50) it’s one I will definitely repurchase from.

Dove Advanced Series Regenerative Nourishing Serum-in-Oil and KMS Dry Xtreme hairspray.

Dove Advanced Series Regenerative Nourishing Serum-in-Oil and KMS Dry Xtreme hairspray

This hairspray tames my flyaways and still leaves me able to run my fingers through my hair at the end of the day. Seriously, there’s nothing more annoying than trying to brush your hair or run your fingers through your hair quickly and actually pulling out strands. 🙁

3. Ponds Evening Soothe Cleansing Towelettes

When my boyfriend was out of town, I spent a lot of time with friends, and that often involved being out late. Several of my friends are leaving the city after graduate school, so I took the week to spend time with people I haven’t seen in a while. Getting back to my apartment at 2 a.m., though, didn’t leave a lot of time for skin cleansing.

Front and center, Ponds Evening Soothe Cleansing Towelettes

Front and center: Ponds Evening Soothe Cleansing Towelettes

I mentioned liking the original scent Ponds cleansing towelettes in my post about wearing makeup at the gym, and the Evening Soothe ones ($5.49) are just as great when your skin needs a quick cleansing.

Like the regular ones, they aren’t the best at taking off my makeup, but as far as getting off that grimy feeling from the subway and the city in general, they’re top notch.

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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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Making Memorably Relaxing Moments With the New CND SPA Collection Scrubs, Masques and Lotions

Published in: Guest Post, Skin Care

CND Spa Collection Bright Citron and Gardenia Woods Scrubs and Masques

CND Spa Collection Bright Citron and Gardenia Woods Scrubs, Masques and Lotions

There aren’t many luxuries I long for at my age. As a millennial living in New York City, there are only a few things I really, really want. Mostly, I’d like a steady income, lower rent, an endless supply of Trader Joe’s Turbinado & Sea Salt Dark Chocolate Covered Almonds and Spindrift Seltzer…

I digress.

When it comes to trying spa and luxury skin care treatments, however, I have many big dreams that have yet to be fulfilled. I have super sensitive skin, as you may have heard me talk about in my previous posts here on Makeup and Beauty Blog, so I am VERY hesitant to get any sort of commercial facial, but one thing I would love to do is have a sensory deprivation session. Unfortunately, they’re rather pricey, especially in this city.

Until the day comes when I can afford fancy spa visits and other amenities, I make due with things I can do at home.

These are some of my recent favorite products, the new CND SPA collection, available at Select Ulta stores. I’ve tried the Bright Citron Lotion, and the Masque, as well as the Gardenia Woods Scrub, and the Soak.

I’d never used any CND products before trying these. I don’t believe there are any of their salons in NYC yet (correct me if I’m wrong!), but these, which are part of a new line, have been satisfying in every respect.

You may have read about my addiction to lotion and how my lotion kingdom has overtaken my nightstand. Well, these new products have mostly stayed in my bathroom, but they’ve already worked their way into my regular bath-time routine.

CND Spa Collection Bright Citron Scrub and Masque

The CND Spa Collection Bright Citron Masque and Lotion are my favorites

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:)

Blooming Lovely With Clean Blossom, a Rich White Floral Perfect for the Hot Summer Months Ahead

Published in: Clean, Fragrance, Guest Post

Clean Blossom Perfume

Mid-spritz. Clean Blossom Smells of a warm summer day.

Okay, you guys, I’ll admit it. I’m literally obsessed with perfume. I have upwards of 30 bottles, ranging from Stella to a few Diptyque, Jo Malone and even Serge Lutens, so it’s safe to say that in my time I’ve sniffed a fair few fumes (I dare you to say that three times fast).

One of my greatest pleasures in life is pairing a fragrance with my mood. There are two kinds of perfume lovers; those who find a cherished fragrance and don’t mess with success, preferring to repurchase bottle after bottle, and those who are a fragrance’s fair weather friend, adoring many and exhibiting fickle favoritism. I unquestionably fall into the latter category.

And, of course, as the trees are finally bursting forth from their skeletal winter forms and blooms are popping out of every garden bed it’s only fitting that I reach for a flourishing floral with a strong bouquet, and for that I have recently been drawn to Clean Blossom ($72 for 2.14 oz).

Clean Blossom Perfume

Beautiful and feminine Clean Blossom

Clean fragrances have been available for over a decade, all owing their popularity to the very first (unsurprisingly entitled Clean), which was said to have been inspired by the beauty in a bar of soap. Since the first smash hit, Clean has released a bevy of “spin-offs” all inspired by simple fragrant pleasures: skin, linen, laundry and rain.

Blossom is the latest release in the deceptively simple range. To my nose it smells of heavy white floral blossoms on a hot summer day. There is a definite dewiness that makes me think of the sunny early morning hours, when the plants are still damp and the smell of night mingles with dawn. Top notes of neroli, lilac and freesia account for the heavy floral burst. Supported by middle notes of orange blossom, lily and magnolia, it is unquestionable that white floral reigns supreme as the chief impression left by Clean Blossom. Musky cottonwood and sandalwood serve as base notes and account for the subtle yet unmistakable deep scent of night that lingers in the floral air.

It’s poetic, and I adore it.

Perfume tells a story, so I always do my best to look up the perfumer’s inspiration. Sephora often provides this information, and I find it provides insight and context into the selected elixir of top, middle and bottom notes:

“Blossom is based on one of my favorite flowers, neroli (orange blossom). Its distinctive aroma fills the air of my childhood places—the south of France, the French Riviera, and the Italian Coast—as well as my current home in Arizona. The name ‘neroli’ is a tribute to Princess Nerola, who made this flower essence famous by using it as a perfume at the end of the 17th century.”

— Claude Dir, master perfumer at Mane and the creator of Clean Blossom

Clean Blossom Perfume

A blooming spring and summer floral: Clean Blossom

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Maintaining Clear Skin With Help From Caudalie Paris Vinosource Moisturizer

Published in: Caudalie, Guest Post, Skin Care

Kiko Artist Collection

Exfoliants have done THE most for my skin

I don’t talk about skin care enough, considering how much time and money I actually invest into it. And I actually get lots of compliments on my skin too! But before I found a regimen that worked, I had a very bad case of cystic acne that would flare up over and over again, like clockwork. The same areas would break out, heal, then break out again.

Caudalie Paris Vinosource Moisturizers

Caudalie Paris Vinosource Moisturizers

My current nighttime routine helps keep my skin happy, and now my skin is pretty much blemish-free…except for at this very moment, of course, because the Universe is a funny place. But generally these days I only need to focus on healing the damaged skin (can still look red and raw), exfoliating, and moisturizing.

clinique, estee lauder

My current skincare line-up (L-R) Clinique Mild Clarifying Lotion, Clinique Charcoal Mask, Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair, Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Eye Serum

Skin Prep: The Cleanse

The most important part of my nighttime routine involves removing every stitch of makeup before I go to bed. I won’t go too into detail, but I double cleanse, either using a makeup wipe + cleanser or cleansing water + cleansing oil, and I also always remove my eye makeup separately with a bi-phase product. Sunscreen and waterproof eyeliner remove easier with separate, targeted products, but your skin care products won’t do a thing for you if there’s still makeup sitting on your skin throughout the night.

Layer, Layer, Layer

Clinique Mild Clarifying Lotion

Clinique Mild Clarifying Lotion

These next few products are the exfoliants and serums I layer under the moisturizer…

Exfoliants have done THE most for my skin. Instead of using a physical scrub, I obsess over my Clinique Mild Clarifying Lotion ($14). It’s super gentle but also super effective, and it somehow keeps my skin clear with just a thin layer. If I feel like my skin needs a little boost, I’ll use the Clinique Pore Refining Solutions Clay Mask ($25).

I’m partial to the Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Serum ($92) and Advanced Night Repair Eye Serums ($65), which I’ve seen my mom use, and I always come back to them. I’ve always lived in an “Estee” house, and I have no complaints so far!

Helloooo Hydration

skin-caudalie

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