Night time routine

Used to be that I couldn’t find any products to wear at night. They’d always break me out. I couldn’t justify the breakouts if I wasn’t receiving any additional benefits from using a product, so I left my face bare every night.

If you’re acne prone and your night cream isn’t of the zero blemish cream variety, you might be better off without it. Dr Hauschka says to leave your skin bare at night and founder of the ordinary Brandon Trauxxe, shares my opinion, too much hydration, just like dehydration, will cause you to breakout.

I now use a face oil at night, oils don’t moisturise, they seal in the moisture you already have. Coconut oil enthusiasts, please stop asking everyone to put it on their face, it has a comodogenic rating of 4 and the scale only goes upto 5, few people can handle such high comodogenicity (if that’s even a word).

Now, my night oil is wonderful, it exfoliates and seals moisture at the same time. Even though I could easily survive without it, I don’t want my face coming into contact with surfaces unprotected while I sleep, something I never thought about before.

Think of your skin as a piece of paper, it’s easier to create folds on a dry piece of paper than a wet one, similarly if you create folds on your skin when it’s dry, those folds will hold. I don’t know about you, but I tend to lie on my side a lot when I sleep, when I do, I create a fold between my nose and my cheek. I have a theory that this repeated trauma is what causes jowls, as the years pass your skin’s ability to snap back into place is compromised, the fold deepens and you’re left with jowls.

You could stop sleeping on your side, but any other position you choose will still create a fold somewhere. Nothing short of using a Japanese pillow will give you a foldless expression as you sleep.


I make too many movements, I couldn’t handle sleeping on a wooden pillow, so I do the next best thing, lubricate. 
As stated before, I use an oil at night, (I also use snail gel depending on the weather). This particular oil is fast absorbing, sinks deeply into my skin and exfoliates at the same time. It’s quite potent as an exfoliator, infact I skip my acid toner when using it. 


What allows it to work so well for me is the base formulation which contains almond,jojoba,hemp seed, sunflower and sesame oil. This rich and non comedogenic base is infused with various citrus oils and that’s what helps with the exfoliation.
Hemp seed oil, is just code for cannabis sativa oil by the way, but don’t worry, you can’t ingest a mind altering substance through your skin. The reason they have it there is because it has a comodogenic rating of 0. That means it can’t block your pores, infact it can’t break you out at all (as with all other things, don’t use if you have an allergy). Other oils with a zero rating are sunflower oil and safflower oil.

This is my current night time routine, it is preceded by double cleansing, something I have talked about at length here. I haven’t changed anything in my cleansing routine, except that I have added a snail gel cleanser to my arsenal of second cleanse cleansers. I’ll be reviewing that and snail gel cream as requested by chubbysmom.

I’m reading the final book in the song of ice and fire series, I just hope reading through this post hasn’t been as punishing for you as my experience with that book.

Thanks for stopping by!

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Shop these items at amazon.com and amazon.co.uk

Yves Rocher zero blemish gel cream

When it comes to moisturisers, I always go for something that doesn’t make any extravagant claims. I don’t want it to have active ingredients unless they fall under the category of humectants, emollients or occlusives. There’s one exception though, yves rocher zero blemish gel cream.


(comes in 10ml tester size too)


As you might have guessed by now, almost every serum or cream promising to fight acne is going to have salicylic acid in it, yves rocher is no exception.
Finding salicylic acid in a serum or moisturiser is hardly a novelty, Sunday riley has it, bravura, clean & clear, Neutrogena, and the list goes on. What interests me in the yves rocher zero blemish gel cream is bailkal powder. 

When that time of the month is approaching, my skin will look for any and every excuse to break out. Daily exfoliation is part of my daily routine, so any zits that try to pop up are flattened before they’ve lived a day on my face.

Now that my skin can’t surprise me with a breakout, it settles for the next best thing, looking dull and greasy. When it does I’m always ready with my zero blemish gel cream. 

As the salicylic cleans out my pores, baikal powder soaks up the extra oil my skin produces and visibly refines the texture of my skin. 

The mattifying effects are incremental meaning you will need less and less product to achieve the same effect with each passing day. While I use this as a treatment, I don’t use any other moisturiser on top and when my period arrives, my skin normalizes and I return to my usual routine. You could of course use it everyday as a night cream.

Also in the same range is this serum.

Thanks for stopping by!

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Shop these products at amazon.com and amazon.co.uk

Anti-pollution skincare

Do you live in a busy city? If you do, I hate to be the one to tell you this, but city air is aging you. Air pollution in urban areas, much of which comes from traffic, includes tiny particles called PMs, nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and chemicals such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs).

Prof Jean Krutmann, director at the Leibniz Research Institute for Environmental Medicine in Germany, says, “UV [damage from the sun] was really the topic in skin protection for the last 20-30 years. Now I think air pollution has the potential to keep us busy for the next few decades.”

PMs have been shown to increase age spots and wrinkles but one of the latest studies also implicates nitrogen dioxide for accelerating aging. The study was conducted on people in Germany and China and it was discovered that age spots on their cheeks increased by 25% with a relatively small increase in pollution, 10 microgrammes of NO2 per cubic metre. Many parts of the UK have illegally high levels of NO2, with London breaking its annual limit in the first week of 2016, with levels reaching over 200 microgrammes of NO2 per cubic metre.

My two cents on this is that all this pollution is the reason why cases of rosacea are on the rise. At the moment, there are not many products for prevention [of air pollution damage], however it may be a trend in the coming years as it becomes a much bigger issue.

I can’t stress enough the importance of wearing broad spectrum sunscreen, it won’t protect against pollution but it will prevent photoaging whilst your skin is battling pollution. You wouldn’t leave your skin vulnerable to both the sun and pollution, would you? Give it a helping hand where you can.

$13.19 amazon.com

As far as dislodging those harmful particles that settle on your skin, consider these options;

Clay masks

Clay face masks benefit the skin by using capillary action to absorb substances on and beneath the skin’s surface. They can absorb sebum, bacteria, water and various toxins and irritants from the skin and can exfoliate dead skin cells and blackheads without friction.

£26.61 amazon.co.uk

$14.95 amazon.com

£10.66 amazon.co.uk

$12.95 amazon.com

Activated Charcoal

It’s been added to cleansers, face masks, toothbrushes, and even juices for its ability to absorb toxins and pollutants.

$24.49 amazon.com

These and other similar products will help your skin. The one product you should skip is scrub, doctors recommend you give it a wide berth.

I look forward to a time when I can recommend a whole range of products geared towards fighting the effects of pollution on our skin.
Thanks for stopping by!

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Prices and availability on amazon are subject to change without notice.

Face oils for every skin concern

When it comes to face oils, blends are better than individual oils and not just any blends, there is a world of difference between a basic blend curated at home and a sophisticated well balanced one. You could ofcourse copy a recipe and mix up the various component oils by yourself, but first do your math it might not be as cost effective as you would like it to be.

If like me you’re not much of a DIY person, you might want to try one of these.

Dry skin

Clarins blue orchid face treatment oil

£33.99 amazon.co.uk

 $47.99 amazon.com

This leaves your skin so soft and hydrated, once you’re hooked you won’t bear to forget to use it.

This best-selling face oil contains extracts of Rosewood, Patchouli and Blue Orchid. Added Hazelnut Oil helps prevent moisture loss and the formation of fine lines Suitable for dry or combination skin.

It has a pleasant smell but as someone who suffers from migraines I should mention that the scent is somewhat of a migraine trigger, but there’s hardly anything to worry about if you use during the day when headed outdoors, the smell will dissipate fast enough.

Anti-aging

Looking for a product to prevent signs of aging? If this is your first foray into anti-aging skincare rosehip oil is perfect for you, I say this because no-one should be using retinols before their time, once you start with retinols you need to keep it up.

Retinols can reverse the signs of aging but not without a cost, for more clarity on this visit yesterday’s post.

Now back to rosehip oil, It protects the skin and increases cell turnover because it contains vitamin E, vitamin C, vitamin D and B-carotene, a form of vitamin A, and which are all antioxidants that help fight free radicals.

£11.95 amazon.co.uk

$13.95 amazon.com

Rosacea

When you have rosacea It’s important to treat your skin gently. Avoid potential irritants such as alcohol, retinol, AHAs and preservatives.  Avoid hot showers too as they can increase skin flushing. Not everything works for everyone but additionally I would recommend this balance me rose otto face oil, it contains essential fatty acids that ease the redness and help to rehydrate and calm your skin.

£32 amazon.co.uk

$154.49 amazon.com

Dark spots

When dealing with dark spots or hyperpigmentation, almost everybody now knows the important role played by skin resurfacing, AHAs come highly recommended for this purpose.

There’s a multitude of reasons why some can’t use AHAs one of which is the resultant dryness that comes with using acid toners, if you’re worried about dryness but still want to treat your hyperpigmentation, how about citrus oils?

 Don’t make the mistake of using them straight, they are always better diluted (as most other essential oils). I’ve included some links of facial oil blends that have citrus oils in them, personally I use luron stimulating massage oil but it’s not available online. 

amazon.co.uk

One thing you want to remember is to always skip your acid toner when using citrus oils, don’t worry about exfoliation, citrus oils will do that as well.

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How retinols work

Retinoids first came to market in the early 1970s as an acne -fighting drug. Since then, they have also been used to treat psoriasis, warts, wrinkles and blotchiness caused by sun exposure, and aged skin.

Here’s the catch, with repeated use, retinol products begin to thin out your skin and will eventually make you more susceptible to UVA rays. If you’re not wearing adequate SPF all the time, with passing years you’ll have more melasma, more discolouration not to mention possible irritation. 

Retin-A, Reova, Accutane, they’re great drugs in that they work. Everyone wants to change the skin, everyone wants to prevent damage. But none of the products on the market we’ve tested prevent damage.

 When we tested Renova and Retin-A, they had an effect on wrinkles and age spots. The only problem with those drugs is that women’s skin is already considerably thinner than men’s, and these medications take off the top layer—so you’ve lost the first or second layer of your skin, and though your skin looks fresh and bright and great, it can actually get worse.

 Simon Erani, the founder and CEO of The Somme Institute in New York.

I share Simon’s sentiments about retinoids, although he does sound rather alarmist.

There’s a proper time to use retinoids, and that’s when you have visible signs of aging, don’t use retinoids before your time, unless you covet that wax doll appearance that long term users of retinoids often have.

As a preventative meausure against fine lines and wrinkles, use anti-aging products without retinol. Somme institute makes products like that, couple them with physical sunscreen and you will enjoy youthful skin for years to come.

Blue Lizard Australian Sunscreen SPF 30+ Sensitive

Thanks for stopping by!

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All products mentioned in this post available at amazon.com and amazon.co.uk

Face serums for every skin condition

Serums confuse a lot of people. They never know why they should use them, when they should use them, or what type to use.

Serums are highly concentrated and active; this means that they need to be applied first, to clean skin. This way all the active ingredients can penetrate your skin.

 These active ingredients are the reason why serums are more expensive than regular moisturisers. 

The high concentrations in active ingredients push the price up. 
As to which serum is best for you, here is a lineup of serums addressing various skin conditions.

Acne



$78.99 amazon.com

£93.99 amazon.co.uk

With 1.5 percent salicylic acid, this fast-acting, quick-drying, medicated oil clears acne and blackhead-causing buildup and debris from congested pores for smoother, blemish-free skin. 

Hydration

This is where I would normally place a serum that contains glycerin or hyaluronic acid and tell you that it can hold 100 times its weight in water. Don’t get me wrong that’s a good thing.

However, a new concept in skin care is the incorporation of ceramides.

Ceramides are important components of the intercellular lipids that are necessary to link the protein-rich corneocytes into a waterproof barrier that is capable of protecting the underlying skin tissues and regulating body homeostasis. 

This means that you are actually replenishing the building blocks of your skin instead of just sealing moisture onto your skin only to lose it when you wash off your hyaluronic acid rich serum.

£33.33 amazon.co.uk

$78 amazon.com

Scar healing


This feels watery and smells like lemon grass. It is enriched with snail gel serum which is excellent for scar healing.

$23.09 amazon.com

£17.99 amazon.co.uk

You can use it in the morning just before you apply your daily moisturiser but I feel that it’s more suitable for a night routine.
Anti-aging

This product uses next-generation retinoid active technologies which have been shown to achieve better reduction in signs of ageing without the irritation that comes with retinol use.

£8.90 amazon.co.uk

£17.84 amazon.co.uk

$23.69 amazon.com

The ordinary’s products don’t boast of glittery packaging and their product descriptions aren’t alluring but the products do work.

To improve foundation texture

Mixing serum with your foundation is one of those fads that is actually worth a try, it’s supposed to make your foundation more dewy. You might want to try this when it’s colder and drier outside and your mattifying foundation starts to leave you with dry patches.

£35 aveeno.co.uk

$15.74 amazon.com

₹2,690.00 amazon India

This aveeno serum is well suited for that purpose because it doesn’t have any light sensitive ingredients or ingredients that make you sun sensitive. It also visibly smoothes out fine lines on application.
Now that we’ve covered serums, it’s only natural that we cover moisturisers too, look out for that post next week.

As a rule choose your serum by condition and your moisturiser by skin type. Your serum goes at the treatment stage of your routine and moisturiser follows as your coat/protection.

Thanks for stopping by!

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Cleansing: am/pm cleansers

Cleansing the face is the most important step in keeping healthy and vibrant looking skin.

 Excessive oils, environmental pollution, and toxic chemicals can build up to form a layer of grime that damages your skin’s health and 

At the end of the day, cleansing is especially important to take off make up and SPF from sunscreens and daytime moisturizers.

Ideally you should take off make up with a dedicated makeup remover then proceed with a second cleanser.

Here use a cleanser that addresses special skin needs. This one is your skin cleanser more than your makeup remover. Its job is to make sure your skin is clean, balanced and comfortable. You can obviously use one cleanser for both cleanses if you have budget concerns. Just buy the best that you can afford when you can afford it.

Without further here ado here are some top picks for second cleansers.

Foam

Avene Cleansing foam



Benefits

-Gently cleanses and removes make-up 

-Leaves perfectly matte finish 

-Soft, lightweight foam with refreshing texture 

£13.49 amazon.co.uk

$20 amazon.com

Key ingredients

-Patented Glutamic Acid mattifies and controls excess oil 

-Gentle cleansing base thoroughly cleanses and removes make-up on the face and eyes 

-Avène Thermal Spring Water soothes, softens and calms the skin 
Gel Cleanser

Gently remove makeup and impurities with AHAVA’s Dead Sea mineral rinse-off gel. This soapless gel leaves oily skin feeling fresh, clean and conditioned.

£14 amazon.co.uk 

$24 amazon.com

Mineral-infused, prevents drying while cleansing.

Conditions and cleanses skin for all day comfort.

The only downfall of this cleanser is that it contains sulfates. 

Cream cleanser

This gentle cleanser exfoliates and supports the skin’s natural protective function, preparing it for a toner and day or night care.

£20.89 amazon.co.uk

$17.94 amazon.com

Formulation: Calendula, chamomile, St. John’s wort, anthyllis and sweet almond meal.

 

Clay mask

Perhaps the most predominant function of medicinal clay is its ability to draw out toxicity from within the body and from the surface of the skin. Various therapeutic clays, especially bentonite clay can effectively bind to heavy metals like mercury, cadmium, lead and benzene as well as other environmental pollutants and eliminate them from the body’s tissues.
This clinique mask combines the detoxifying properties of clay and the acne fighting properties of salicylic acid. 

£19.95 amazon.co.uk

            amazon.com

Like other clay masks use this 2-3 times a week.

Did I mention you could use any one of these cleansers for your morning cleanse?

Thanks for stopping by!

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