Review: Sunday Riley C.E.O. Glow Face Oil

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Face oils are pretty much essential during the winter months if you still want to keep your skin soft and glowing. And don’t fret if you have oily or combination skin, face oils actually HELP oily skin reduce fewer oils, instead of using harsh drying creams that make you produce even more oils. This face oil, in particular, leaves your skin so incredibly soft that with this Polar Vortex taking over most of the U.S. you’ll want to invest in something that will keep your skin hydrated!

What It Is: Face Oil

What It Does: Hydrates and brightens skin

Active Ingredients: Vitamin C, Turmeric, and Primrose Oil

Verdict: I can’t even begin to tell you just HOW AMAZING THIS IS! And yes! This face oil is worthy of ALL CAPS TO EXPRESS MY ENTHUSIASM! I’m in love with Vitamin C oils and/or serums because it truly helps brighten up your skin, and if you’re acne-prone like myself, it actually keeps the zits at bay! The Primrose Oil makes it so that the oil is ultra-hydrating and it smells really good! The tumeric, on the other hand, helps reduce inflammation, again, a plus for sensitive and acne prone skin. This oil is so light-weight that it won’t clog your pores, and it’s also fast absorbing which means that it can be used under makeup if you so wish. If you’re going to invest in a face oil, I’d say go ahead and choose this one cause it’s truly the holy grail of face oils.

Price: $80

Where To Buy It: Sephora

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Review: Korres Wild Rose Sleeping Facial

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Born of a Greek homeopathic pharmacy more than 20 years ago, the brand’s philosophy is rooted in the use of natural ingredients of the highest quality, skin and environmentally friendly products with clinically tested efficacy, and the products that can inspire and make us and our customers happy.”*

I’m hugely obsessed with face masks, but I’m even a bigger fan of sleep masks. Why? Because there’s no wait time with sleep masks. You can simply slather on the sleep mask and hit the sack and wake up to gorgeous skin (who wouldn’t want that?). This particular mask is guaranteed to make your skin look extra glowy no matter how much of a night owl you are (like me).

What It Is: Sleep Mask

What It Does: Guaranteed to make your skin, softer, smoother, and more radiant.

Active Ingredients: Wild Rose oil, Vitamin C, and Hyaluronic Acid.

Verdict: This mask is amazingly weightless. It’s like having a scrumptious souffle at the tip of your fingers, as the cream instantly dissolves into your skin. This mask has intense hydration and the Vitamin C helps to brighten your skin. This is the best mask for anyone out there who’s on the lazy side (like me) because it does all the work for you while you sleep! Even after the first application, you wake up to visibly brighter, smoother, skin! It’s a true godsend for anyone who has problematic skin or just needs an extra boost. I highly recommend it.

Price: $48

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

*Italicized blurb from website.

By: Azzurra Nox

My Skincare Routine!

If you have combination or oily skin like me, then this routine will best suit those who have a similar skin type as myself. Many of the products I use are intended for combination to oily skin, so they won’t be necessarily helpful to those that have dry skin.

My skincare routine is pretty simple, but I’ve decided to break it down into two sections: Morning and Night.

Morning

Having oily skin means that I absolutely CANNOT skip washing my face in the morning, as I often wake up with an oil slick all over my face. I know most people prefer to use cold water in the morning to wake themselves up, however, I actually need to use hot water in the mornings to wash my face in order to break down the oils. Another thing that I absolutely cannot do without is facial cleansers!

Here are some of my faves:

Purity by Philosophy

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Burt’s Bees Radiance Facial Cleanser

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Clean & Clear Morning Energy Cleanser

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After washing my face I apply Smashbox’s Photofinish Primer under my eyes to keep that area hydrated throughout the day. I also apply a thin layer of Perfectly Posh’s My Hero sunscreen before applying makeup. And that’s it. No moisturizers, or any other creams or serums, as my skin is too oily and any sort of cream will either increase my oiliness levels or break me out.

Night

I always – always – remove my makeup before hitting the sack. It doesn’t matter how tired I am, or how late I return home, I JUST DO IT. Falling asleep in your makeup is one of the worst things you can do to your skin! Not only will it clog your pores and be the breeding ground for breakouts, but it’ll also cause pre-mature wrinkles! So ladies, if you value your skin, REMOVE THE MAKEUP before bed.

My go-to makeup remover for the past fifteen years or so has been Olay’s Daily Deeply Clean 4-in-1 Water Activated Cleansing Face Cloths (33-ct. $14.19 on amazon.com). Now, there may be some better removers out there, but I’ve been happy with these for so long that I’m not really itching to change it up. But if you have any suggestions, leave them to me in the comments!

Now, once I’m done removing my makeup I use a toner. My currents faves are:

Thayer’s Alcohol-free Rose Petal Witch Hazel with Aloe Vera Toner ($7.99 on amazon.com)

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Everyone Face For Every Day Tone ($4.79 on amazon.com)

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Tip: When choosing a toner, opt for alcohol-free, as any of the toners that contain a high alcohol content or smell like rubbing alcohol will dry out your skin.

After toner I apply an anti-acne cream (my favourite for years has been Neutrogena Rapid Clear Stubborn Acne Spot Cream).

Once I’m done applying a thin later of that, I’ll use top it off with a thin layer of either Clinique’s Even Better Spot Serum (I love this because it moisturizers without being greasy AND it helps eliminate any past acne scars or dark spots) or a thin layer of Isabis Formulae Vitamin C with Vitamin A & E Serum (available on amazon.com for $25.97). I’ll usually use the Vitamin C serum more often when my skin looks like it’s about to breakout, or during moments when I know it’s more prone to breakout (like when I’m getting closer to my period) as this serum is a MIRACLEWORKER when it comes to keeping your skin not only incredibly smooth and soft, but pimple-free!

Last, but not least, I use an eye cream. I’m always changing these up (you can check out some of my favourite eye creams here). At the moment I’m currently using Honest Beauty The Younger Eye Cream ($28 at Target) and so far I’m satisfied with how it leaves my undereye feeling incredibly hydrated and smooth.

This pretty much sums up my skincare routine. It’s nothing too complex but works for me.

What are some of your skincare rituals?

By: Azzurra Nox

Say Farewell to your Acne FOREVER!

Acne can be a very serious problem for many men and women. Not only is it painful but it can be very damaging to your self-esteem. And yet, acne is no longer a problem that’s only debilitating teenagers around the world, but rather more and more adults everyday are being affected by this skin condition. 50 million, to be exact.

Now, I’m not a dermatologist, and I haven’t suffered from severe adult acne as some have, but I’ve had to deal with some painful cystic acne in which nothing seemed to cure. And apparently dermatologists were just as clueless, offering to prescribe one different acne cream or wash after another with no real significant change.

Being someone who’s always avid to learn, I decided that maybe I should try to find the perfect cure to eradicate this problem. After all, a whole population of an island on Papua New Guinea have never suffered from acne in their lives. This made me think about what did they have going for them?

First of all, throughout my extensive research I’ve learned one major fact, that acne is a problem that cripples mostly the Western World (poor eating habits and stress being the major issues).

I know dermatologists have been saying for years that they don’t know WHAT causes acne, but I decided to take matters into my own hands and figure out exactly what is happening to our skins.

The major culprit is P. acnes (a bacteria that colonizes the skin whether or not you have acne) and grows rampant with the help of sebum (hence why people with oily skin or combination skin are the ones who majorly suffer from this skin condition). Hormones also play a huge role, creating an overabundance of sebum (thus making your skin fertile for acne to flourish).

The issue is, how can we eradicate the problem? I turned to science as a way to solve it. What I learned was that a lot of the inflammation that causes acne begins in the stomach and that the common denominator in crushing acne is Vitamin A. So I used that knowledge to test drive the five steps that have kept me acne-free for two years.

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5 Proven Steps to Better Skin

Vitamin A. This vitamin makes your skin virtually hostile towards P. acnes by keeping your levels of sebum very low. There’s a reason why dermatologists prescribe Acutane to acne sufferers, and it’s because it’s pretty much overdosing on Vitamin A. Now, there’s two ways you can obtain more of this vitamin (through food such as a chicken livers, which you’d only need to eat it once a week, as Vitamin A is a fat soluble vitamin, meaning it’ll stayed stored in your liver till your body consumes it) or you can take Vitamin A supplements (which anything higher than 25,000IU daily dosage could be potentially harmful or even fatal, which is why if you’re planning on taking supplements that you see your doctor first to see what dosage is best for you). I DO NOT recommend to self-medicate because this isn’t a water soluble vitamin, so take with caution.

Rose Water Toner. Rose water helps soothes inflamed skin, and nothing causes acne-prone skin to breakout or get worse than using toners that are alcohol based (they’re too drying and hence will have your body replace even more sebum, creating a vicious cycle). There’s many to choose from on the market, but my personal go-to is Alteya Organic Bulgarian Rose Water (from New Rose Harvest). You can order it from Amazon and it retails for $15.94 (250-ml/8.5-fl. oz.).

Benzoyl Peroxide. This works because it helps kill the P. acnes that’s harvesting on your skin. Usually it takes about 6-12 weeks for you to start seeing a difference, so consistence is key. I’ve tried out many but what has really worked for me is Neutrogena’s Rapid Clear Stubborn Acne Spot Gel. It’s got 10% Benzoyl Peroxide (most of the creams out there have only 5%) and it really helps with keeping my skin clear. You can find it on Amazon or your local Ulta, Walgreens, Rite-Aid, or CVS and it usually retails for $6.50 (1-fl. oz.).

Brewer’s Yeast. Now, one of the major culprits that causes acne is your digestive tract being out of whack. Somehow, inflammation in your gut corresponds with inflammation on your skin. One of the reasons why that population in Papua New Guinea doesn’t suffer from acne is because they eat a plant-based diet, low sugar, and no processed foods. But some people even if they were to do all that, will still have gut issues because of stress. Enter Brewer’s Yeast that’s packed with all the B-vitamins essential for healthy skin (Thiamin Vitamin B1, Riboflavin Vitamin B2, Niacin Vitamin B3, Pantothenic acid Vitamin B5, and Pyridoxine Vitamin B6). It’s also got the good bacteria that makes your gut happy – Probiotics. Now you can take it in powder form (which is absolutely disgusting but does the trick) or you can find it in capsule form. I recommend Now’s Brewer’s Yeast, retailing for $10.25 (200-tablets) on Amazon.

Vitamin C Serum. Vitamin C is essential for collagen and cell turn over, and with skin that’s constantly inflamed, it helps dry out the P. acnes without causing it harm. I always put this on after having applied a thin layer of Neutrogena’s Spot Cream (see #3). I especially love Isabis Formulae’s Vitamin C serum because it’s also packed with Vitamin A & E which somehow helps keep spots at bay while leaving your skin feeling supple and glowing (this serum is so lightweight that you can also apply it during the day). It currently retails for $25.97 (30-ml/1-fl. oz.) on Amazon. A little goes a long way. One bottle usually lasts me between 3-4 months (I use it once a day at night).

*In conjunction with these steps you must also follow a diet that’s extremely low on dairy intake, high in leafy greens and water, and no processed foods or exceeding more than three teaspoons of sugar a day.

By: Azzurra Nox