"If you don't see anything beautiful in yourself, get a mirror"
- Kendall Jenner
- Kendall Jenner
I have been M.I.A for a while now but now I'm back! And I wanna share my secret to healthy glowing skin. And yes, I am super bronzed here and it is NOT makeup. Remember I went to Thailand ya'll? Yeah, that's where I got my accidental tan/bronze skin tone, but not my glow! If you wanna get the glow keep reading!
Get soft glowing skin for summer in two easy steps:
1. Dry Brushing
Dry brushing is exactly what it sounds like.
But why should I dry brush? Well, brushing your skin takes off the dead layer of skin and gives the skin have a more uniform look, which gives us that GLOW, hunnie. And not to mention it's super inexpensive to achieve healthier and softer skin.
Taking a loofa and gently exfoliating/brushing the skin while the loofa and your skin is dry.
Start from the ankles upwards and continue up the body avoiding your face.
Always use a natural loofa or brush when doing this and use short strokes on the limbs of your body and brush in one uniform direction.
On larger parts of the body, like the stomach, use circular motions.
Try this for at least a month to reap the reward of glow.
Do not over brush/exfoliate the skin. Too much of a good thing can be a bad thing! You want to avoid turning the skin red because having red skin means there is inflammation and over brushing can lead to abrasions on the skin (not pretty!).
This is an obvious one, but even I sometimes skip this step out of laziness. Use a light to medium body lotion that suits your skin. You want a moisturizer to soak into your skin. To help your skin to absorb the moisturizer, try applying after you have toweled off from a shower. The heat of the shower will have enlarged the pores and left some moisture on the skin to allow the moisturizer to be absorbed and spread across the skin more easily.
I personally like using moisturizers with very little or no fragrance in them and that have coconut oil or sometimes I use a body instead like kakui nut oil.
There are a handful of benefits to dry brushing other than having beautiful glowing skin.
Increases in blood circulation, which is good for many things like metabolism. Can potentially lessen the look of cellulite. I say "potentially" with a grain of salt here because there have been many claims that dry brushing gets rid of cellulite. I don't think that's necessarily true. I think for some people dry brushing helps reduce the look of cellulite, but does not get rid of it. There are just too many factors that are involved with cellulite that make it hard for me to believe that dry brushing is the end all and be all of cellulite.
Now, go forth into your bathroom and dry brush yourself and reveal your glow!
I have dry skin and we all know if your skin is dry it makes putting on foundation suck because sometimes the dry skin will cause the face to look bumpy because the skin is being lifted off the face.
1. Do NOT over work the skin with brushes or sponges. Try applying with your hands first in TAPPING motions.
2. Do NOT apply foundation in circular motions. This really does cause the dry skin to pucker up because it's almost like exfoliating the dry skin off.
3. DO use a damp beauty sponge in pouncing motions (sparingly) to blend the foundation.
4. Try warming the skin up beforehand with a hair dryer and applying oil to the skin before foundation.
I think Valentine's Day is wonderful (albeit a little cheesy)--to be honest I think we should celebrate anything and everything that makes us happy!
I was am NOT a romantic at all and not very girly when I was younger and I didn't really put too much emphasis on Valentine's Day just because I was always treated really well and I was in University and was focused on myself for most of the time (as you should be at that age).
But I am now married and my husband and I have different schedules and do a lot of things separate from each other and don't really spend too much time actually doing something romantic or really appreciating each other. I think that in situations like that Valentine's Day can be very beneficial by emphasizing the love for one another. Although I 100% believe that being treated well most of the time should not make Valentine's Day a huge deal, sometimes it's needed because we all get carried away with our own lives and forget about our loved ones.
I don't like the pressure Valentine's Day puts on women or men to splurge or do something outrageously romantic and cheesy. I think very small gestures, like cleaning the house, watching a movie marathon or whatever makes the other person happy is really the bees knees when it comes to truly loving and understanding what the person needs.
And for all the single people out there, don't be pressured and don't feel 'bad' or 'left-out,' because you don't have that 'special someone' you have romantic feelings for. You don't have TO! You can celebrate Valentine's with friends, pet or family!
I think that everyone should practice self-love. If you take anything from Valentine's Day it would be to love yourself the way NO one can really love you because you are the longest relationship you will ever have. And this doesn't mean to look at your naked body in the mirror and praise yourself. It means maybe to indulging in your favourite food, watch your fave movies, play video games, buy something nice for yourself or take a bath/facial. I take baths to celebrate me and to relax, personally.
I am still NOT a romantic, but sometimes things like Valentine's Day makes you think of other people or even yourself and how much you take for granted certain things for granted, so maybe that's why we should celebrate Valentine's Day.
(From left to right) Tatcha: Camellia Cleaning Oil, Lush: Cup o' Coffee mask, Tatcha: Polishd Rice Enzyme, Banish: Vitamin E oil, Glam Glow: Thirsty Mud mask, Banish: Pumpkin enzyme mask, Lush: 9 to 5 cleanser, Josie Maran's Pure Argan Oil Light, Tatcha: Silk Lotion, Herbivore: Blue Tansy mask, Babor oil cleanser, Farsli 24K Rose Gold Elixir, Philosophy: Purity Made Simple cleanser, Tatcha: Dewy Skin Mist, Lush: Angels on Bare Skin Almond exfoliator.
There are so many skin care products out there but what should you be looking for when it comes to getting the most bang for your buck?
I have a few tips on what your skincare products should have and why.
1. None to very little fragrance.
Your skincare products, unless it is a cleanser, should have no scent or if it is natural, very little scent. We want this because fragrance in cosmetics products can be synthetic or, most likely, contain alcohol. We do not want any type of alcohol based fragrance to sit on our skin, as alcohol (-OH) can per-oxidize the skin to create free radicals.
Lavender oil is something to look out for because it can cause wrinkles by oxidizing the other oils or ingredients in the products which are then free radicals that can out stress on the skin and cause wrinkles.
2. The main selling point of the product should be listed in the first half of the ingredient deck.
What I mean by this is that if a jar of moisturizer says that it's royal jelly moisturizer then royal jelly should be listed in the first half of the ingredient deck. Now the former is not a strict rule, there are some exceptions because of the chemistry that goes into skincare products.
You also have to look at what you are paying for. The more expensive it is, the more of that "miracle/special" ingredient should be in there.
And again research that special ingredient to see what it really does.
3. Does it address your ACTUAL skin concerns?
Ask yourself, what is in it that will benefit my skin and my concerns? Will it lighten acne scars or lift mature and sagging skin?
If your skin is dry or more mature, and you are looking at a product that addresses this, make sure you look at the ingredient deck and product consistency. For dry/mature skin types: best products tend to be creamy and thick. Whereas for oily types, the products tend to be gel-like or less-emollient.
If you are 20 years old and looking for an anti-wrinkle cream but have no wrinkles and go to try a stellar anti-wrinkle cream product. You are going to be disappointed because, well...you have no wrinkles to fix! You will most likely not see a difference. So make sure you have actual concerns before going out and buying something you do not need.
4. Try to go with as natural and/or small an ingredient deck as possible.
Natural is usually the best in terms of knowing that most of the ingredients in the skincare products you know, can pronounce and usually self preserving. But it may not be as effective as the more synthetic or chemically derived/processed products can be. Natural versus chemical is just a preference.
I do not feel that skincare products SHOULD work overnight, UNLESS that is how it is advertised as, but even then... In fact, you should always give your skin 3-4 weeks of testing the product to really see if it does anything.
Natural products tend to be less harsh as well, which is good for your skin. Just like trying to lose weight, write a term paper or cooking a good meal, it takes patience and will require some time to see any results.
A small ingredient deck means less potential for filler or fragrance ingredients.
In fact, you should always give your skin 4 weeks of testing the product to really see if it does anything.
Rule of thumb is to do some actual research on the products and really dissect and look at the ingredient deck.
If there is an ingredient in the list that confuses you, just research it. Make sure that if you are choosing a product because it is advertised as something-or-other miracle whats-it, that the ingredient deck reflects this. Just keep in mind that product processing and other ingredients in the product can change the effectiveness of the product.
Dry Skin = CRAPTASTIC Foundation Application
You see that pic of that croc? Yeah, that's how I ACTUALLY feel when I have dry, scaly and textured skin. Having dry crocodile skin is the BANE of my existence--especially when it comes to applying foundation. Applying foundation when your skin in general just does not want to cooperate can be a real pain. When your skin is dry, the foundation can stick and lift up the dry skin to nake it look more prominent.
Here are some tips for prepping the skin BEFORE applying foundation:
PREP THE SKIN
1. Clean your skin
3. Beauty Oil or Thin Oil
5. Prime (Optional)
6. Barrier Lotion/ serum (Optional)
Let all the layers soak in for a few minutes before applying your foundation.
There are so many gold infused beauty products out there on the market that it make me wonder why gold is even in there in there first place. There are the "Farsali: 24K Rose Gold Elixir," "Guerlain's L'Or Face Primer", Gold eye patches and the gold collagen lip masks, just to name a few.
We know that the gold flecks in the products leave our skin looking glowy and it makes the product so much more luxurious, but is it worth it? And what the heck does gold really do when applied to skin?
Gold is supposed to leave your skin glowing, which it does. Gold is also said to rejuvenate the skin, heal wounds and sores, but how?
First of all gold does NOT rejuvenate the skin when applied topically (on top) to the skin. There was a study done in 2016 by Moulonguet et al., where gold threads were implanted under the facial skin of a 77 year old woman. The study found that the gold threads that were implanted had small myofibroblasts (a type of cell) growing around the gold threads that built/collected a thick casing around the gold thread.
The thick casing was later replaced by collagen and this is where there is an actual rejuvenation of the skin. This type of research and procedure have been around for a long time but there has been very little documentation or research done on gold itself, until recently.
Wound & Sore Healing
Another study was done in 2016 by Lee et al., looked at how "gold nanorods," affect the skin. "Nanorods" are super super tiny particles of gold. The study found that negatively charged gold nanorods penetrated the skin deepest, whereas positively charged gold nanorods penetrated just bellow the surface of the skin. This degree of penetration of the skin has to do with the charge that our skin gives off. For our purposes, we just wanna focus on the positively charged gold nanorods.
The Lee et al., (2016) study concluded that gold nanorods in general are seen as carriers for nutrients that can help speed up healing of wounds and sores, but does not repair skin all on it's own. The positively charged gold nanorods specifically carry molecules that have a fat/lipid bilayer into the surface of the skin. So oils or non-polar molecules are ideally pairs with gold in cosmetics.
Ok, you've read through all the science-y stuff and what does this all mean?
Does the gold do anything?
After reading the research, it suggests that gold does NOT rejuvenate the skin by producing collagen unless it is surgically implanted.
Gold applied topically, may have a potential to work, but we don't know if the gold in the product is positively or negatively charged. And we also don't know if the size of gold particles/flecks actually matters.
All the studies used nano sized gold particles, which means if you can barely see the gold fleck, IT'S STILL TOO DAMN BIG--that's how small those nano gold particles are.
I do think that the gold can still be beneficial in delivering certain nutrients and beneficial products into the skin more effectively. By increasing the delivery of oils, minerals or nutrients to certain levels of the skin, it can speed up the healing time of wounds and sores. But just beware of what the product claims that gold can actually do for you.
The research suggests that pairing gold with products that penetrate the skin slowy, are non-polar or are oily are best, because of how gold can easily bind to the those particular molecules within those products. The patches and gold infused oils may be beneficial to some people but not everyone.
Lee O, Jeong S, Shin W, Lee G, Oh C, Son S. Influence of surface charge of gold nanorods on skin penetration. Skin Research & Technology [serial online]. February 2013;19(1):e390-e396. Available from: Academic Search Complete, Ipswich, MA. Accessed October 13, 2016.
Moulonguet I, Arnaud E, Plantier F, da Costa P, Zaleski S. Histopathologic and Ultrastructural Features of Gold Thread Implanted in the Skin for Facial Rejuvenation. The American Journal Of Dermatopathology [serial online]. October 2015;37(10):773-777. Available from: MEDLINE, Ipswich, MA. Accessed October 13, 2016.