Same Product for Face and Body…Time Saver or Time Waster?

Lately more and more products are multitasking, covering a couple of different needs. There are body washes that double as shampoos and bars that allow you to use the suds as you please either for your body, your hair or even a shave. Is all this multitasking a good idea? Is it a stroke of genius resulting in an all in one product or just putting off the inevitable of having to purchase for every part?

In hotels I’ve been forced to use those shampoos/body washes/ hand soaps. Usually it’d go on a scale of being fine for my hands, a little drying on my body and being terrible for my hair. However in hotels it’s mostly about keeping things industrial and cost efficient, so can’t exactly point to that.

Men as a whole are really into anything that makes their already relatively fast “beauty” regime even faster. It’s not uncommon that I run into guys that use the same bar of soap for pretty much everything. Companies that market to them giving their seal of approval stating that you can double everything up and get it all done in one shot just reinforces that. Now, that being said I’d also like to speed up and price down my daily skincare routine.

Recently I ran out of my face cream and the next batch wouldn’t show up until a few days later. I couldn’t not use anything. I had a body lotion that I noticed was technically okay to use on the body and or the face. Usually in these cases it results in a very thin, liquidy moisturizer for your face but your body feels okay or your body is coated in an obviously too thick face moisturizer while your face couldn’t feel better. I hadn’t tried anything out that was truly interchangeable. To my surprise the lotion didn’t break me out, it was a little more watery than I like for my face, but it did a good job of keeping it moisturized. I was in shock. I’ve been using it now for the past few days.

What has continued to cross my mind is that the skin on your body and the skin on your face is different. Different areas need different care. Even on your face there are areas that respond differently (take for instance the delicate skin around your eyes as compared to your forehead.) What I have ultimately decided on is that although there weren’t any negative side effects of using this body/face lotion I want to provide my skin with as close to the best as possible. Somehow I think that if the formulation is “decent” or able to be used anywhere it has to be lacking in one department or another. In a pinch I think it’s a great option, or even on vacation when you need to pack light, but for the time being I believe the best way is to go specific, even if it ends up taking a little longer.

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Review: Skyn Iceland Glacial Face Wash

You know that feeling when you washed your face with bar soap? (Hopefully you don’t) That tight, almost tacky feeling that leaves your skin not feeling like skin. That is what this product left my face feeling like.

It lathers well, it smells nice, but it really stripped my skin. After I wash my face with this it just has that feeling that there’s no oil or any sign of moisture. I’m reaching for the toner before I even finish washing. I do find that the stripping does cause breakouts for me because it just is too strong. Supposedly there is a cooling sensation this face wash is supposed to give off which I haven’t felt yet, but for me that’s not a huge drawback.

I found this kind of unusual considering the brand is for people that have really overtaxed skin that needs help. I also own the Pure Cloud Cream from Skyn which I can say is terrific.

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When you lather this face wash into the lovely lather I mentioned earlier it feels very smooth, a little thick, there’s a sheen to the product resembles a heavy duty hand soap.

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I’m already halfway through the tube so I’ll use the product up for the heck of it, but I don’t see my opinion of it changing.

 

 

Why Facials Are Such A Big Deal

You may know the basics of a facial. They wash your face. There’s steam, a lot of scrubbing and a better complexion walking out, but why do people rave about facials? Why are they essential to keeping your skin healthy?

Even if you have your skin routine down pat you should invest in a facial a minimum of twice a year. As an esthetician I should recommend a lot more often (more like every 4-6 weeks) but life is busy, time is precious and facials aren’t cheap. If someone really pressed me for the truth with how little you can get away with I’d say the major changing of seasons, so when it gets cold and when it gets hot. Keep in mind though, that is the bare minimum.

Here’s what you might find from getting facials:

 

Your products work better. There gets to be a point that no matter how much acne serum you use or how much moisturizer you apply it just doesn’t do what it once did. There’s most likely a dead layer of skin that’s eating your products. They don’t penetrate as they should. When was the last time your skin was cleansed well? Your blackhead wash won’t be as effective if you don’t extract correctly. Like with most things, you have to get to the root of the problem and start there.

You’ll save money. Not by just booking a facial, but by educating yourself and learning what kind of skin you have. You’ll learn not to fall for crazy claims on products that don’t mean anything. You won’t waste money on items that aren’t for your skin type.

You’ll pick up a trick or two. You may never have heard of multi-masking or spot treating before. You might find a short cut in prepping your skin or find a link to what is causing breakouts that you would’ve never considered. Ask questions, but by simply listening you’ll most likely walk away with something you didn’t know going in.

You can monitor your skin better. Two sets of eyes are better than one. Chances are, your esthetician will even have a chart set especially for you. You’ll be able to track how your skin reacts to certain products, as well as any changes your skin goes through. Wouldn’t it be interesting to compare your skin concerns from months and years past?

You’ll age better. Sun spots will be addressed early on and wrinkles will be avoided by stimulating collagen production. Even muscle tone will improve through the massage portion of the facial.

Your face is something you and everyone around you sees everyday. Take care of it and treat it kindly.

 

Review: clariSEA Deep Pore Lavender Detox Charcoal Cleanser

I first found this brand when using their Deep Pore Detox Exfoliating Charcoal Mask. It’s a powdery exfoliant that you pour out, you have the option to add it to a cleanser or use it on its own and mixing it with water. I liked that I could control the amount of exfoliation I got by being able to mix it myself, but I also just really liked the product. It did a great job of exfoliating my face and had only a few ingredients.

I was looking online and I happened to stumble across a great deal for the Deep Pore Lavender Detox Charcoal Cleanser. It was from the same brand (clariSEA) and had again, very few ingredients, some of theme being the same as the exfoliating mask. It was an easy decision.

When it arrived I opened the package and was ready to use it. The consistency is pretty gooey, kind of sticky. It has a definite lavender smell. When I actually went to wash my face with it it seemed a little difficult to completely remove, it felt like remnants of the wash was still on my face. I didn’t feel like it exfoliated my skin that well or cleansed it that great for that matter.

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Over the next few times I used it I tried to find how to use it to get good results, convinced I was doing something wrong. I left it on for 10 minutes, then washed it off, the time after that I cleansed and washed it off right after, I used it a few days in a row, then reduced it to only twice a week. It didn’t matter what I did, it didn’t cleanse my skin well. It didn’t exfoliate it, it just left my skin dry. I can’t say that it made my skin break out further, but it didn’t do it any favors either. I considered the fact that it does contain salicylic acid, but it is a low strength and I usually respond very well to that. I’m not quite sure what went wrong with this product, but I have to say I’m a bit disappointed and don’t see a point in using it anymore if it’s not working. I would definitely try this brand again because I believe they have good products, but I most likely wouldn’t get a cleanser again.

Review: Josie Maran Argan Matchmaker Powder Foundation

Since clearing my skin by keeping away from all foundations I was hesitant to try anything. I didn’t want anything to interfere with my progress. I also feared since it had been a while since I wore anything my skin would reject something new and be more prone to breaking out with an intruder on its surface. Thankfully with this product none of these are concerns. 

The first thing that I must mention is the coverage. It took me back. One swipe, one dusting, one circle made with your brush or sponge will cover things that some concealers can’t. The best way to describe this powder is an eraser. Speaking of which…let’s not forget it is a powder. In most cases powder = drying, right? No. Remarkably this foundation is completely non-drying. On the other hand it also won’t clog your pores with a thick, oily formula.

The reason behind looking for foundation at all was because I still see some redness with my skin, especially with more sun in the summer, it was time to find something.

This foundation is the best of both worlds. Protects against the sun (SPF 20) and erases any imperfections.

The only thing that I must warn you with this is since the coverage is so good it’s easy to go overboard. I found too much leaves you looking like you’re about to go on stage. It can look similar to stage/theatre makeup. It covers absolutely everything and is only one color. However, if worn correctly it can look so natural,as if you have nothing on and just have a flawless face. While wearing this I did have someone ask if I was wearing makeup. As far as “matching” to my skin (as it claims to do in the name) I didn’t see anything that led me to believe it does that, but I can’t take off any points because I’m just as happy with it despite that.

This Argan Matchmaker Powder Foundation was more than what I was expecting and most of all managed to perfect my skin while not sending my skin into a frenzy. Not many things can do that.

Makeup Mishap: Self Tanner

I’m going to count this as makeup, because there are some makeup products with self tanners and self tanner in many ways is like makeup, makeup  that stays with you. There are so many reasons this is on the list. Color, texture, authenticity.

Color: Let’s go right to the one everyone immediately thinks. ORANGE. There, now that’s out of the way. Just because you don’t resemble a carrot doesn’t mean you’re home free. There are many self tanners out there, many different shades of what looks like a lighter version of a piece of pumpernickle bread. There’s also a sort of camel colored finish that some give. Of course getting your exact color when you tan in a bottle is next to impossible, but it shouldn’t be that far off.

Texture: Very rarely does it go on evenly. Ignoring the hands for a moment, even those are the most complained about. There are just some areas that are hard to reach, like getting all of, and completely around the backs of your arms. There are some areas with some really challenging contours (knees, elbows, ankles) Those are dead giveaways if you’re wondering if someone uses self tanner.

Depending on when you apply the self tanner, if it dries properly, sleeping patterns as it dries, the point is there are a lot of variables into this will dictate the finish. I remember despite my best efforts after showering I’d apply the self tanner on my arms and it would always settle heaviest at certain parts. Leaving a really inconsistent pattern. It was funny at the time there was a girl that I sat next to in college that had the same marks only hers settled at the wrists.

Something else worth mentioning is the condition of your skin while using self tanner. The beginning of summer/spring is when people start going for self tanning, when you don’t even have a base or trace of color, but it’s probably the most challenging time to use it after a long, drying winter. It’s known any dry patches on your skin eat up moisturizer. Imagine the moisturizer being colored. That’s what you’re dealing with when using self tanning lotions. Before you get a chance to rub it in, it’s sunk in. These areas are commonly the back of the arms, cheeks, sides of thighs, tops of the feet, just to name a few. Dryness varies and where it occurs also varies. Make sure to moisturize and moisturize well before using self tanner. I’d go over those dry areas about 15 minutes beforehand with a plain lotion or cream to help with application.

Authenticity: By this I just mean does it appear to be real. If it’s the dead of winter with subzero temperatures and no sun and you’re bronze it’s going to look a little out of place. If you’re naturally fair and suddenly you come into work/school/etc. getting gradually, but very noticeably tanner as time passes it’s not going to look right. Now if neither of these concern you, then by all means. Just something to take into consideration. Not everyone lives on the beaches of California or Florida and therefore you won’t look it. If you’re going to do it right think if it ties into where you are, how you look without the tanner and the season.

 To conclude: I think that if done correctly they can look great and really make anyone look better with a little color. There were just some things that when done make me cringe. They look like self tanner, not a tan. You shouldn’t look like a color, you should look like you have color.

Contouring

Contouring has gotten so big it’s difficult to write anything on it without getting too involved. I would consider it to be the biggest makeup trend out there, it’s been bought directly into the spotlight. Talking about it however is  like opening a vault of opinions, theories and methods. There are so many articles on how to achieve the perfect contoured face, which products to buy, the color combinations that will most easily and effectively give you the desired look. It’s gotten a bad reputation because a lot of times it’s done incorrectly or to the absolute extreme. Or I know another common thing I hear is ” I don’t want to have a Kardashian face” Understandable. Contrast needs to be present, but not to the point where your face is two distinct different colors. It’s not natural, it’s not normal and it makes it obvious. If you don’t take it too far and follow your facial structure there’s no reason you can’t jump on board.

1. Stay in the family of shade that you already go for. Don’t immediately assume you need a white, white or an orangey dark tan color. There are other options and keep that in mind. I’ve seen in tutorials a lot of times the colors they choose are at a maximum as far as intensity, of course if you have a similar blending technique or skin tone your chances are better, but in the beginning it’s better to adjust accordingly or as your skill level improves. Get to know yourself, the products you use and you can appropriately adapt.

2. Do you have visible cheek bones? What kind of hairline do you have? Do you have a defined jaw? These are just a few things to take into consideration before you take a brush to your face. If you have a very round face and suddenly there are two lines where bones appear to be absent it will look like lines and nothing more. Everything could be in place, you could know exactly how to execute the quintessential contoured face, however if your face doesn’t “allow” for it , it’s as good as having a collection of high quality lip glosses that don’t match your coloring. Go along the lines of your face and you won’t go wrong. Not everyone has a face that can be sculpted like the next person. Everyone is different.

Bottom line, take it easy. There’s a lot to master when it comes to contouring. It won’t happen overnight, there’s a lot of room for improvement and change. Take your time and make it your own.