Ditch Botox & Eat Collagen-Boosting Foods Instead

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Photo courtesy of nutritiouslife.com

Collagen is one of the most important factors when it comes to having beautiful skin. Collagen production helps with acne and wrinkles, however, as the years go by collagen production decreases which makes wrinkles and crepes appear and even healing from wounds will take longer or scar. So how can one pause the hands of time? With a little help from foods that help boost collagen production, you can increase the chances of combating fine lines and have less scarring.

So nix the Botox and try these collagen-boosting foods to help promote not just younger skin, but healthier skin too (because bad skin happens at any age).

Vitamin C

This vitamin is found in many citrus foods such as oranges, kiwis, and pineapples.

Copper

Found in rich foods such as organ meats (livers, hearts, etc.), cocoa powder, and portabella mushrooms

Glycine

This is found in foods such as gelatin, chicken skin, and pork skin.

Zinc

This vitamin can be found in foods such as oysters, beef, and crabs.

As you can see there are many food options out there to help you include more collagen-boosting foods into your diet, so whether you’re vegan, or wish to eat less meat, you can find a way to choose a serving of these foods at least once a day.

Eat your way to beautiful skin and you won’t have to resort to unnatural ways of keeping it looking good!

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Review: Etude House Zero Sebum Drying Powder

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Oily skin has been the bane of existence since I hit puberty, and although many people assure me that having oily skin means that my skin will age slower (since essentially your skin is hydrated 24/7 and thus means fewer wrinkles will appear), trying to battle acne due to oily skin well into adulthood can be rather annoying. Not to mention that without any primers, any makeup I wear essentially melts off within three hours or so and if someone craves glowy skin, mine is like J.Lo’s glow phase times ten (meaning more an oil-slick than glow). So I’ve always been on the search for powder or cream that could help me keep my oily skin under control.

What It Is: Oil Control Sebum Powder

What It Does: Controls the production of oil on your skin.

Verdict: This product is what Urban Decay’s DeSlick wish it were. The thing is this powder WORKS. Even on uber oily skin as my own. The downfall? Well, apparently keeping the oil in check also means that my skin doesn’t breathe, so it actually broke me out more in areas of my face where I don’t usually breakout at. However, I may have used too much of the product, so I stopped using it for a week till my skin stopped freaking out and reused it again afterward using only a tiny amount and no breaking out occurred AND it kept my oil in check. So essentially if you’re looking for a powder that will help you curb your oiliness, then this is the way to go. Prior to this, I haven’t found one that actually works and I’ve used a billion others from various brands that provided no true results on the oil spill that is my skin. So, I’d recommend this product, however, use sparingly as it may break you out, but it DOES work on keeping oily skin at bay.

Price: $6.85

Where To Buy It: Amazon

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Review: Patchology Flashpatch Rejuvenating Eye Gels

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Not only do these under-eye masks look extremely glamorous (they’re glittery) but they actually work in terms of hydrating your under-eyes. I know many people have claimed that it has also eliminated their dark circles, but since I’ve been cursed with hereditary dark circles, I didn’t see much difference there. But maybe if your dark circles are due to late nights, then maybe it can help you out.

What It Is: Hydrating Under-Eye Mask

What It Does: Hydrates, smooths fine lines and helps diminish the look of dark circles

Verdict: These gels were truly very comfortable and fast working. I kept them on for twenty minutes or so because they just radiated a relaxing, soothing feeling. Once I removed them my skin felt very hydrated and soft. I like that these gel masks didn’t slide off your face so you weren’t obligated to lie down whilst having them on. You could easily attach these under your eyes and pass the time doing something else. I’ve heard that some people have used these as sleep masks for the eye, and maybe they work if left overnight, but I’m unsure about falling asleep with masks on (it seems like it would be a bit difficult if you’re someone who moves around, which sometimes I do).

Price: $15 for five pairs

Where To Buy It: http://www.anthropologie.com

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Review: Pixi Overnight Glow Serum (Concentrated Exfoliating Gel)

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This is the third skin product that I’ve tested by Pixi and I’m truly loving it! (You can check out one of my Pixi reviews here). I know that you may think that I’ve been reviewing a ton of skin serums lately, but alas skincare means more to me than cosmetics. If you have an amazing skin you won’t need that much makeup, so that’s why I’m so obsessed with keeping my skin looking top notch (which I know is usually easier said than done!). But that’s why I wish to share with you any skincare product that can help you achieve that amazing skin that we all crave!

Packaging: Like most serums, this comes with a drop dispenser, and in keeping with the Pixi brand it’s a light shade of mint.

What It Does: Gently exfoliates to reveal a healthier and more even skintone. Helps reduce the appearance of fine lines and fade superficial sun damage over time.

Active Ingredients: Glycolic acid, aloe vera, and cucumber

Verdict: What I love about this serum is that it’s thick and feels extra emollient. The glycolic acid stimulates cell turnover, while the aloe vera helps to heal and soothe skin, and cucumber calms and relieves puffy skin. After using this serum for two weeks my skin became instantly smoother and softer. I initially purchased this serum because of the glycolic acid and the promise of it helping fade sun damage (especially since I’m so deathly pale and I live in So-Cal). In two weeks I can’t really tell whether it has helped with any possible sun damage, but it has helped in fading any past acne scars. The serum feels ultra luxurious, as though you were applying an insanely expensive serum, but in reality you’re just splurging the same amount that you would for a MAC lipstick. I recommend this serum, and if you’re acne-prone and oily, this serum keeps the zits away and doesn’t cause one to breakout or increase the oiliness either.

Price: $24

Where To Buy It: Target or https://www.pixibeauty.com/

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Empties Post – First One Ever!

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Ever since the internet went crazy with “Empties” posts, I’ve been wanting to write one for this blog. The only caveat? Being able to accumulate enough used up products to write a post about. Seems simple, right? Not when you have far too many products and keep switching from one to another, and the guilt of throwing out something you’re not crazy about seems almost wasteful. So for me, using up a product and thinking about repurchasing the same item again means that I need to have thought it was absolutely AMAZING and willing to go through the experience all over again.

So without further ado, here are a few of my empties:

Honest The Younger Eye

I wrote a full review of this product here if you wish to read more details about it. What can I say? I absolutely LOVE this eye cream! It’s everything an eye cream should be and I think it has greatly improved the skin around my eyes tenfold.

Would I repurchase: HELL YES!

Everyone Face For Every Day Tone

I included this product in my skincare routine post. This is one of my favourite toners because not only is it lightweight, but it leaves my skin feeling fresh and clean. It also has contributed to keeping my skin acne-free!

Would I repurchase: YES!

Korres Pomegranate Balancing Cream-Gel Moisturizer

Even for this, I wrote a full review of this product here, if you wish to read a more detailed description. I’m usually not a huge fan of moisturizers cause even the most lightweight ones tend to make me break out, but this one lived up to its claim of being gentle for acne-prone skin, and I fell instantly in love!

Would I repurchase: YES!

Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Eye

This cream is a restorative eye treatment for undereye skin. I like that the cream was thick and emollient, and did work in diminishing fine lines caused by fatigue. I didn’t find anything NOT to love about this cream, but at the same time, I didn’t fall in love with it as much as I did with the Honest eye cream.

Would I repurchase: Maybe

Skin & Co. Roma Truffle Therapy Eye Concentrate

I was sad to see this finish as I added this as one of my favourite eye creams that I recommend. This cream feels luxurious and incredibly hydrating. Even a year later I still love it!

Would I repurchase: YES!

Pixi Beauty Sleep Cream

This cream was just a little too much on the thin side for my liking. I’m more into creams that feel very moisturizing and this was a little on the light side, however, it DID keep my skin hydrated and didn’t cause any breakouts. If you want to read a more detailed description, check out the review here.

Would I repurchase: Maybe

Clinique Moisture Surge

I know this is the holy grail of moisturizers for many people, especially if you’ve got oily skin. I was given this cream as a sample by one of the Clinique reps at a cosmetic shop with the promise that I would love it. Well, sorry to burst anyone’s bubble but this is simply too watery for my taste. I guess the lightweightness of it is what makes it perfect for oily skin, but I kinda love thick creams.

Would I repurchase: No

Medusa’s Makeup Grapefruit Astringent

I’m a big fan of toners and this one simply smells amazing! It left my skin feeling refreshed, and kept it from becoming oily too soon.

Would I repurchase: Yes, but they have two other scents (Rose and Cucumber) and I’m curious about the cucumber version.

There’s a satisfying feeling of completion when you get to the end of a product, and I think this is why Empties Posts are so popular. Do you have similar feelings? Would you try out any of these products?

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6 Skincare Secrets to Beautiful Skin!

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Photo courtesy of advanceantiagingskincare.wordpress.com

Exfoliate lips using a toothbrush.

One sure-fire way to keep chapped lips at bay is to exfoliate lips using a toothbrush. I usually do it in the morning, you can use either a lip scrub with it or a pinch of Vaseline and gently scrub your lips. You can either scrub in circular motions or horizontal.

Use a Peel to brighten your skin tone.

Peels are extremely easy to use and can remove dull skin cells from the surface, which in turn helps brighten up your skin tone. Since most peels have acid, I’d suggest once a week usage. I suggest my fave here.

Invest in a good eye cream.

Most people will say that you can use regular moisturizer around your eye area, but they are wrong. The skin around your eyes is thinner and absorbs product much faster, so I recommend using a cream specifically made for the eye area, as it’s easier to cause irritation if you use ingredients that are too harsh for the delicate skin. Need ideas? Here’s a list of some of my favourite eye creams.

Use ice to reduce a pimple.

If you have to go out and have a huge raging red pimple, here’s a quick-trick. Hold an ice cube wrapped in a washcloth against your pimple for fifteen minutes. The ice will help reduce the inflammation and redness, allowing you to apply concealer much more easily. For added benefits, make ice cubes out of rose water for an extra skin-soothing treatment!

Don’t remove eye makeup with a makeup wipe.

Makeup wipes are too harsh when trying to get rid of mascara (especially if you’re scrubbing your eyes, a major no-no since it promotes premature wrinkles and wreaks havoc at the delicate skin). What I do is break up the makeup using Johnson’s Baby Lotion by placing it on a cotton ball and gently applying it to my closed eyes. I let the lotion soak in for a few seconds and then wash it off with lukewarm water. Not only will your eyelashes be moisturized, but it’ll also cause less breakage. Added bonus: this method removes all of your eye makeup in less than ten seconds!

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Review: Sunday Riley Luna Sleeping Night Oil

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If you’ve been following my blog, then you know that I have a soft spot for skin oils. I know that it may seem counterproductive to use oils if you have oily skin (like I do), but in reality, in some weird way, drying out oily skin actually creates more oil than applying oils. So when I received this product in my latest Allure Beauty Box, I was thrilled to try it out.

Packaging: A gorgeous glass bottle with a dropper dispenser.

What It Does: Moisturizes, eliminates redness, fights wrinkles, makes pores smaller, and improves damaged skin.

Active Ingredients: Retinol and chamomile.

Verdict: Now, I know that some people may not be into this oil because it does have some fragrance to it (and maybe it can be irritating to sensitive skin). But the fragrance that it does have is due to natural essential oils from neroli, blood orange, ylang ylang, and vetiver. But if you don’t have sensitive skin, then this oil may be perfect for you. I really loved how it made my skin feel so velvety soft in the mornings (after applying it at night) and also making it plumper. It truly gave me the dewy skin that is oh so coveted by the beauty world. What I love is that the oil is very lightweight, and it’s perfect even for acne-prone skin as myself. I highly suggest to check it out if you need an oil, but if you’re looking for a cheaper alternative to skin oils, then check out my favourite Vitamin C oils here.

Price: $105

Where To Buy It: Sephora.com

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Review: 3M Nexcare Acne Covers

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June is Acne Awareness Month, and in lieu of that, I’ve decided to dedicate this week to acne prevention. I’ll admit right away, I’m a picker. Whenever there’s a pimple, I can’t help but pick or squeeze it, which of course worsens the situation (usually infecting the nearby areas) and causes redness, bruising, and scarring.

But ever since I’ve found these miracle workers, I haven’t been tempted to pick at my pimples anymore!

What It Is: Absorbing acne covers

What It Does: When placed on a pimple, the covers work like a sponge to absorb pus and oil.

Verdict: I don’t know what sorcery this is, but it WORKS. I’ve tried various others acne covers from other brands, and they rarely worked as well as these. These covers actually absorb the pus from the acne overnight, even cystic acne! I can’t begin to tell you how miraculous these are! They’re a true godsend in zapping zits overnight. All you have to do is wash your face, then apply the cover directly on the pimple, and in then in the morning you remove the cover and you’ll see all the pus has been absorbed on the cover while the pimple is gone! If you haven’t tried these, do yourself a favour, and GET THESE NOW!

Price: $5.98 (if you subscribe to 5 products) or $6.29 for one time purchase

Where To Buy It: www.amazon.com

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Avoid These Hidden Sugars to Lose Weight & Acne-Free Skin!

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Hidden sugars is one of the reasons why the average adult in the U.S. is culprit of consuming around 22 teaspoons of added sugars every day. Many times, these sugars are hidden in foods meant to be “healthy.” Normally, one should only be consuming around six teaspoons of sugars a day if you’re female (that’s around 100 calories) and nine teaspoons a day (around 150 calories) if you’re male.

Why is sugar such a huge no-no? Well, apart from sugar being one of the leading causes associated with diabetes, heart disease, obesity, high blood pressure, and cognitive disorders (such as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease), sugar is now even linked to cancer.

Now, apart from all those scary diseases, sugar is also a huge culprit when it comes to teenage and adult acne and any other skin conditions (because sugar is known to cause inflammation).

But not all sugars are created equal. The issue isn’t with sugars found in fresh fruits or vegetables, but rather it’s the added sugars found in the majority of the meals we consume that are the so-called bad sugars.

So how are we to avoid such hidden sugars? How do we know where they’re lurking? Below is a list of ten most common “healthy foods” that in reality have more sugar hiding in them than junk food.

TOP TEN HIDDEN SUGARS FOODS

  • Cereals and flavored oatmeals
  • Packaged breads (even those of the whole-grain variety)
  • Granola bars
  • “Lower calorie” drinks such as coffees, energy drinks, juices, and teas
  • Protein bars and meal replacements (think Slim-Fast)
  • Sweetened yogurts and other dairy products
  • Frozen waffles or pancakes
  • Bottled sauces, salad dressings, condiments, and marinades (think ketchup, relish, barbecue, or teriyaki)
  • Dried fruit and other fruit snacks (such as Fruit Roll-Ups)
  • Restaurant foods (sugar is found is almost anything cooked at a restaurant, it’s added in various sauces, desserts, and dressings)

So how are we to avoid hidden sugars? Basically, the issue is you must consume the majority of your foods in their natural state (such as fruits and vegetables). Once foods are processed or prepared in factories or restaurant chains, then that’s when unneeded sugars and sodium are added.

I’m not saying that you must avoid all of those foods on the list above ALL THE TIME, but try to consume them in moderation, that is the key to maintaining a happy and healthy lifestyle.

Need a healthy alternative for breakfast? Check out my recipes for GREEN SMOOTHIE and STRAWBERRY KIWI SMOOTHIE.

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Review: Korres Pomegranate Balancing Cream-Gel Moisturizer

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I’ve previously tried products from this brand before, and I truly loved it. I like how they use all-natural ingredients, and from the products I tried, they’ve actually made my skin way better in both look and texture. So bonus points for that!

Being someone who’s always had oily skin, trying to use moisturizer has been almost impossible as all the ones I’ve tried tended to be too rich and break me out. And who wants to look like a pepperoni pizza, right? So when I received this moisturizer made specifically for Oily-Combination Skin in my Allure Beauty Box, I was tempted to give it a go.

What It Is: Cream-Gel Moisturizer for Oily-Combination Skin types

What It Does: Delivers ultra-hydration whilst minimizing pores and creating a matte, yet luminous complexion.

Active Ingredients: 5% Pomegranate water, Pomegranate Extract, Alpine Willowherb, Tannins, and Polyphenols

Verdict: Oily-acne prone skin gals, this product is for YOU! This moisturizer is THE BEST I’ve ever tried. Not only does it keep my skin hydrated, but it also mattifies the skin without it looking dull, but rather refreshed. From the very first application the cream felt luxurious and thick, but when applied it actually felt rather lightweight. It also has a very faint, yet clean smell to it. The packaging is simple, yet sleek. I really love how it makes my skin feel less oily, but plump with hydration and ultra-fortifying. I don’t have issues with big pores, but this product also helps with minimizing pores and giving them a smaller appearance. I highly recommend this cream if you’re looking for a moisturizer for oily and acne-prone skin.

Price: $34

Where To Buy It: https://www.korresusa.com

By: Azzurra Nox