Skin care regime: Winter

We had a great trip up to Salt Lake City over Thanksgiving enjoying the company of family and friends. I forget whenever we go up to Utah, my skin gets super dry! Since we’ve been back, I’ve been using my favorite avocado cuticle oil to help repair the dry nail beds. I found this article interesting about skin types and what regiment works best. My skin has been a weird combination of like every skin type for as long as I can remember. It still likes to think I’m a teenager by breaking out every now and then (eye roll). I actually just stopped my subscription to Proactiv after a year of using their system because I felt my skin showed zero improvement. I’m going to try some of the items mentioned below and I’m definitely open to any skin care recommendations!

Your Ideal Skincare Regime Based on Skin Type

By Aurora McCausland

Everyone is going to have an opinion on skincare. Chances are, you know someone who spends thousands of dollars on skincare products monthly, but you also know someone who washes their face once a week with just water and somehow still has clear skin. Every single person has unique skin, and the best way to know what your personal concoction of skincare products should be, is to go to a dermatologist. They will be able to assess your skin and let you know what is causing certain problems, and prescribe products to alleviate them. However, if your skin problems are not severe, or you’re looking for new recommendations, here are some skincare tips based on skin type.

Dry

If you have dry skin you probably experience flaking, scaly skin, and in extreme cases, pain due to how dry and cracked the skin has become. With your skincare routine, it’s important that you have an exfoliant to remove any dead skin, and an intensive moisturizer to restore the balance your skin needs.

-Gentle exfoliant. Avoid anything with microbeads, as this will just tear up your skin. Try a powder with a base of rice enzyme powder.

-Gentle and creamy cleanser.

-Hyaluronic acid. You can get this straight, or you can choose a serum that contains hyaluronic acid. This will help your skin retain a considerable amount more moisture than it ordinarily would.

-Cream based moisturizer.

Oily

Oily skin is on the opposite end of the spectrum, and needs an entirely different set of weapons to combat the overactive oil glands in your face. When you apply makeup, make sure you have a matte setting spray and a great setting powder to keep your face from resembling an oil slick throughout the day. Here are a few product recommendations to get you started.

-Weekly mud mask. Be careful what product you choose, but this will help equalize the excess oil.

-Oil-free cleanser. The last thing you want is to add more oil to your face, so make sure your cleanser isn’t contributing to your problem.

-Salicylic acid. Be on the lookout for a moisturizer that contains this power ingredient, which will help promote cell turnover and control the oil.

-Rose water toner.

Combination

When you struggle with combination skin, you have to choose relatively neutral products, and then treat specific areas of your skin accordingly.

-Non-lather cleanser. You want something that will lift makeup and sunscreen, but won’t strip natural oils.

-Exfoliant that contains glycerin. You want to get rid of excess oil as well as dry skin, but then make sure you retain necessary moisture!

-Clarifying toner. Toner is a really important step if you have combination skin! Look for something with willow bark that will help tighten the pores in your T zone.

Sensitive Skin

Sensitive skin is a whole new bag, since you can break out in painful rashes and acne if you use products that aren’t gentle enough with your skin. Your best bet when it comes to sensitive skin, is to seek out a high quality skincare company that specializes in sensitive skin. This way you know that every product they put out is formulated just for skin like yours.

-Sensitive oil free cleanser.

-Rosehip oil. This will help soothe any problem areas, and is great for restoring moisture.

-Skin relief face serum. A serum should be soothing and repairing, which is just what your sensitive skin needs.

Acne Prone

Acne is something that many people deal with far into adulthood. The idea that acne is only present during hormonal teenage days is a myth, since most acne is caused by stress, and hormones. And surprise, hormones don’t leave you alone once you are finished with puberty. You need a skincare routine that targets the acne you have, and prevent more acne from sprouting up.

-Clay mask.

-Glycolic and hyaluronic acid cleansing pads.

-Micronized Benzoyl Peroxide spot treatment.

Skinmapping

One of the most important things you can do for your face is to try to understand it better. One of the best ways to do this, is by face mapping. Face mapping, or skin mapping, is a way of telling what is causing skin problems by which area of the face it is appearing in. For example, acne along your jawline is often related to hormones, whereas acne on your cheeks is related to your respiratory system. Here is a great article that goes over skin mapping and which areas of your face mean what.

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Quick teeth whitening with Carbon Coco

carbon coco teeth whitening

I’ve been using this 100% natural teeth whitener, Carbon Coco. It’s a charcoal whitening powder that you brush on followed by a charcoal toothpaste (which is black in color but mint flavored). This product is easy to use, doesn’t require a lot of time (the same amount of time it normally takes to brush your teeth) and it has great results! I also like that it’s a natural product, not tested on animals, free shipping and the provide great customer service.

How to Use:

Wet a soft-bristled toothbrush (the kit comes with one or you can use your own as long as it’s soft-bristled)

Dip wet toothbrush into charcoal powder. Brush your teeth like you normally would. NOTE: your teeth will look black, don’t be shocked! Your spit will also be black.  Also, since it’s a powder it’s a little messy. I brush over my sink to catch any loose powder. It doesn’t stain sinks/counter tops but can be a little messy.

Brush for 3 minutes. Rinse off brush and rinse mouth.

Apply charcoal activated toothpaste on brush. Brush for 3 minutes. Rinse.

Results: 

It took about 8 weeks of consistent use to see results for me. I’ve used other at home teeth whitening products in the past and had a great experience with Carbon Coco mostly because it’s super easy and fast to use.Carbon Coco natural charcoal teeth whitening

carbon coco teeth whitening

black charcoal powder ^ 

carbon coco teeth whitening

Top 3 favorite beauty products under $10

I love a good beauty product but also love a good deal. I’m not and never will be the type of person that drops a lot of money on a thing, I’d much rather save it for travel! To each their own for sure and I’m excited to have found these beauty products I’ve tried and love that also happen to be pretty good deals.

top 3 beauty products under $10

  1. Avocado Cuticle Oil ($7)- This oil (mixture of avocado, almond and vitamin E) is an awesome conditioner for cuticles, nails and fingers. While it is an oil, I feel like it absorbs pretty well — I usually use it at night right before I go to bed and my cuticles and nails feel great and refreshed the next morning. I especially like this oil after painting my nails a lot of using nail polish remover. I find my nails can become more dry, thin and brittle and this oil helps replenish them.
  2. Witch Hazel ($8) – I’ve tried SO many skin toners for my face! Witch Hazel has been my favorite so far as far as keeping my skin in good condition, refining pores and maintaining relatively acne free 😉 I like that it’s a natural product, feels clean and isn’t too harsh on my skin. I use it morning and night.
  3. Rimmel Lash Accelerator($8)- I’ve written about this product before and am still pleased with how it works. It’s affordable, easy to brush on your lashes and has great results! Like most lash growth products, your lashes will go back to their regular length when you stop using the product. I use this product at night after removing all my makeup.

*Updated* Favorite Product for Fuller Lashes: Rimmel Lash Accelerator

I’ve never had full, long lashes but I’ve never had the desire to pay a lot of money for that look. I do love how lash extensions look but it seems like a big cost and maintenance. There’s lots of serums and products out there, I found this one by Rimmel on Amazon and chose it based on reviews and price ($8!)

Before:  rimmel lash accelerator

After:

 rimmel lash accelerator

 rimmel lash accelerator

rimmel lash accelerator serum

The serum is super easy to use, you just brush it on the base of your lashes and use the lash stick or the brush. I use it every night before bed and have used about half the bottle as of now. I definitely saw results and feel my lashes are longer. It’s not the same volume you would get with extensions, but for $8 I am super happy with this product!

rimmel lash accelerator serum

11/29/17 – I’m now about 75% finished with the tube of lash serum. I’m still loving this product and here are some recent results:

rimmel lash accelerator serum

rimmel lash accelerator serum rimmel lash accelerator serum

Wet brush: favorite de-tangler

One of my favorite things about Tessa is her curly hair! Right after she was born, one of the nurses exclaimed, ‘She has so much hair!’ Guess the old wives’ tale about heartburn and the amount of hair a newborn has is true, ha, ha! We’ve never cut her hair because I love it so much and it’s grown out pretty evenly. People always think I curl and style it which is nice since it just dries in nice ringlets! I can’t remember where I first saw an ad for the Wet Brush but as Tessa’s naturally curly hair is getting longer and less easy to untangle, I decided to try it.

We found a 2 pack on Amazon so I actually use one on my own hair too. This is by far the best product we use for Tessa’s hair. Before we were using a wide tooth comb and a de-tangle spray. The Wet Brush is easy to use and does a fantastic job! I always start brushing at the ends and with Tessa then in sections. It’s much easier to use than our previous method. wet brush wet brushwet brush

 

Bright White Memorial Day

I’m thankful today to celebrate and remember those who have died to allow use to enjoy the amazing freedoms of this country. We have many freedoms and rights that citizens of other countries do not have. Sometimes I feel that politics (especially in a two party dominant country) can be divisive so I’m extra grateful we have days like today to remind us that we are all Americans.

Today is celebrated in lots of different ways – the beach, vacations, family time, etc. We don’t have anything special planned today as Dave is going out of town tonight for work in Phoenix. Something I always love about Memorial Day (and the other American holidays) are the flag decorations that dot the neighborhoods and businesses. The Red represents ‘valor’, the White ‘innocence’ and the Blue ‘vigilance, perseverance and justice’.

There’s an old saying that you can’t wear white until after Memorial Day – not sure where this originated or if it’s truly observed! I tend to wear more black and gray but also love white. For a lot of people, Memorial Day also signals the beginning of summer and summer colors. Here are some of my white picks:

WHITE WEAR MEMORIAL DAY

I’m happy to partner again with Smile Brilliant who help you achieve your best smile from the comfort of your home! I first used their custom made teeth whitening trays in December and had a great experience. The whole process is easy to follow and use. Smile Brilliant is offering you $25 your whitening trays with the code: jamtartmd25 . With this code you can receive their teeth whitening system for lightly stained teeth for $104!

You can also win $50 off a teeth whitening kit by entering this Rafflecopter giveaway. Contest ends 6/5/17 and winner must use discount code by 6/23/17.

WHITE WEAR MEMORIAL DAY SMILE BRILLIANT TEETH WHITENING

dress/Birkenstocks/Converse/nail polish/pineapple top

 

 

//www.smilebrilliant.com/widget/blog74676

Amazing and Affordable Deep Conditioner

I’ve used quite a few daily and deep conditioners throughout the years – various brands, high end, low end, etc. I first tried the Eva NYC Hair Mask a few weeks ago and absolutely love the results. I apply a dime size amount to the ends  after shampooing my hair and leave it in for about 3-5 minutes. It washes out really well and smells great! My hair is so soft, manageable and feels full and healthy.

Eva NYC hair mask deep conditioner

Eva NYC hair mask deep conditioner

Even though I received this product (travel size) as a sample, I will definitely be buying it when mine runs out. In addition to the results, I also like that it’s not super expensive and that it’s easy to find/purchase.

Eva NYC hair mask deep conditioner

Also wearing this limited Great Lash Royal Blue Mascara being re-released this month and eyeliner sample (although with my dark lashes, you can’t really see the blue), Anthropologie poncho top (sold out), Loft petite jeans, and earrings I made 🙂

maybelline royal blue mascara

Spring TLC

It’s started to feel like Spring this last week (even though it’s been our most mild winter in 10 years ha!) and it’s especially nice because my skin is less dry. I received these Farmhouse Fresh masks for my birthday and they are so awesome. The green is avocado butter (a super hydrator), the white is tapioca (to improve texture) and the orange is pumpkin (to boost radiance) and smells exactly like a delicious pumpkin pie! All three of them smell so good and feel very gentle on your skin.

farmhouse fresh mask sampler

farmhouse fresh mask sampler

I also got this avocado cuticle oil from a local beauty supply store and I feel like it’s definitely helped soften and moisturize my cuticles. I was hesitant at first because I wasn’t sure how oily it would be or how well it would absorb. Luckily, it absorbs well and doesn’t leave your nails or fingers feeling oily. I was going to post the Amazon link but it was $8 — I found it locally for $1.95! So if you’re looking for it, hopefully you can find it for cheaper. While I was out, I also found this pineapple hand cream at Bath and Body Works ($3) which is my favorite flavor!

pineapple hand cream avocado cuticle oil

And…a Spring haircut! I normally prefer my hair long but every few years get in the mood to cut it shoulder length. The first cut it always scary and I feel like it’s always shorter than I imagine but luckily hair grows back 🙂 One of the challenges with moving so much is not having a regular hair stylist. You have to find the right people to get recommendations from, finding a good price, and salon aesthetic that suits you. I found this stylist off Yelp recommendations based on the fact that I wanted someone right in Chino Hills as opposed to driving downtown or to Orange County. The layers were a bit too choppy for my style, but it’s nice to have a fresh, light cut. spring haircut freebird collection dress

spring haircut freebird collection dress

dress from Freebird Collection // gold sandals from Target