Bargain Beauty, Blemish Control, Cetaphil, Cleansers, Face, Maintenance, Skincare

The World’s Easiest Resolution

I’m not a resolutions person. Obviously. I mean, here I am, knocking the dust off this blog well into the second (technically third) week of January. A resolutions person would have been here that first Monday. To me, New Year’s resolutions are amateur hour. I’m making and breaking promises to myself 365, BAYBAY!!

My problem is, I always go too big. Lose weight, save money, find my life’s purpose, blah blah. That stuff is a lot of work! You know what’s probably way better for our mental well-being? Starting small. Make your bed every day! Kick your panties into the hamper instead of leaving them sunny-side up in the bathroom! Mop!
No. Don’t mop. I’m sorry I said that. FUCK mopping.

How about, instead, you could resolve to have cleaner skin? You don’t even have to buy a new face wash, or an expensive cleansing brush. Are you all ready for my ONE WEIRD TRICK?

Here it is:

Wash your face longer. For 60 whole seconds. That’s it.

Real talk, you guys; I know what you’re doing. I see how quickly you wash your face. I SEE YOU. But, it’s ok! I used to do the same thing! In fact, I considered myself a pretty accomplished face washer. I washed my face every night and most mornings, I used my Clarisonic. I would even wash my face when I was three sheets to an ill wind! Some of the mascara might be left behind, but, I’d AT LEAST use a cleansing wipe. So, pretty good, right? Pretty good, but could be better. Like, maybe better if I didn’t rush through it in just a few seconds. You know, like how washing a fork with soap real fast is good, but making sure you get all the crud off is preferable?

Still not convinced? (Pretend you’re not convinced.) Will a little bit of Beauty School Confidential help? Consider this; a big reason for the effectiveness of a spa facial is the extensive time spent on cleansing. Most estheticians will cleanse your skin twice during a facial. When all is said and done, you’re going to get, probably, a combined five minutes of solid cleanser on skin action. It’s not an accident that your skin is so bright after that! I mean, the default time on my Clarisonic is 60 seconds, and that thing is using sonic vibrations, or whatever, AND bristles. If the Clarisonic needs 60 seconds to get your face clean with all that technology behind it, your sweet lil fingers need at least that long. It’s so easy though! A big part of this cleaner face resolution is the simplicity, because hopefully, you’re already washing your face. So, you don’t have to do a whole new thing, you just have to a regular thing differently.

“But, Sarah,” you might be thinking, “60 seconds is a long time to count! What if I get bored or lose my place? What if I count too fast or too slow? How am I supposed to keep track of the time when I’m in the shower in all my nudely glory?!” It’s easy! Zones, guys. It’s all about zones. Your forehead? ZONE. Nose down to your chin? ZONE. Those precious cheeks? ZONE(S). Three zones, 20 seconds each. That’s all you need to do to get cleaner skin. It’s free, it’s easy, it works!

Since I’ve been making an effort to wash my face more thoroughly, I’ve seen a visible improvement in my skin. I have a lot less tiny white heads around my eye/cheek area, and, I haven’t been getting random, underground, throbbing, volcanic breakouts on my jaw and chin. I even managed to avoid the inevitable eruptions I deal with whenever I get sick, and those are usually really gross, and really hard to kill.

clean skin

HASHTAG NO FILTER

HASHTAG NO FOUNDATION, too. That’s right. No foundation. I have on a little concealer around my nose to cover some tissue related redness, and, I have on a little under eye brightener. But, that’s it. No foundation, no powder. No filter! Just my clean, moisturized skin. For comparison, here’s an unedited photo from the end of last summer.

clean face comparison

I think you can tell a difference. In the first picture my skin looks brighter, clearer, and smoother. I’m wearing a full face in this photo, and my skin still doesn’t look as good. See what I’m saying? I’m not making it up!

I don’t even use an expensive cleanser.

cetaphil cleanser

Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser, $7.49, Walgreens

Bet you didn’t think it was going to be THAT cheap. A cheap cleanser and your free fingers. That’s all you need. It’s really so easy! Easier than losing weight, easier than kicking your underwear into the hamper, easier than pretty much most things, and you get nicer skin. Happy freaking New Year! So fresh and so clean in 2015!

Standard
Blemish Control, Dr. Jart+, Face, Masks

Dr. Jart+ Pore Minimalist Mask

dr jart mask

Sephora, $7.50 for one sheet or $35 for a box of five

A couple weeks ago, I hit the Sephora with a fellow childless enabler, and we had a lot of fun! Fun is a nice way of putting it. Rampage is a more accurate way of putting it. Like, did you know they have a sample limit at Sephora? Me neither! They way they told us, it seemed more like a suggestion, so we just kept hammering the samples anyways. I feel like my mid-level Sephora card entitles me to whatever I want in there. My VIB card, and my remaining bitterness over them making it seem like I had a job, and then not hiring me eight years ago. Last year, I made it a goal to let go of old grudges and annoyances, but that Sephora snub still stings. Especially when I saw homeboy that looks like Bobby fucking Hill working in there.

I like to just stay mad about not getting the job that one time so I don’t have to go back and try again. STAY MAD. That’s what I always say. That job is probably so hard; you have to deal with petty assholes like me all day. BUT, there is lipstick….

In my defense, it’s not like I just go in and demand all the samples and don’t buy anything. That’s not a rampage. A rampage involves damage inflicted on a personal level, too. If you’re not swiping your debit card in a near blackout state, sister, you ain’t rampaging.

Amidst the frenzy, in a fog of Tom Ford fragrances, I grabbed one of these single sheet Dr. Jart+ Pore Minimalist Masks. Having never used a sheet mask before, I wasn’t sure what to expect. Since it was a sebum sucking and pore cleansing mask, I thought I’d get something sticky, or clay like. Instead, I got a fairly heavy mask that was absolutely drenched in a thin serum. Really, at that point, I was kind of confused, but, hey, I’m not a doctor! Dr. Jart is the doctor.

dr jart mask photo

-1 point for not having a mouth zipper.

After smoothing the mask onto my face, I realized, unless I kicked back, I was going to have a drippy mess to clean. I did not want that, and I didn’t want to waste any of that precious serum, so I put my head on my little pillow, and just CHILLED. The serum was really cool and relaxing, without any of the burning you can get from mint extracts. When the time was up, I peeled off the mask, and I was really surprised by how much serum my skin had absorbed. The mask wasn’t wet and heavy anymore, it was damp and papery. The directions said not to rinse, to just massage the remaining serum into the skin, and I am so about that. I hate washing off masks! I get so much water everywhere, it really might make more sense for me to just get in the shower. Same amount of toweling off, less water on the floor.

I wasn’t ready for how effective this mask was! My skin was smooth and clear, my underground sebum deposits were smaller, and my nose pores looked so clean. The work on the hard little sebum bumps was especially impressive; I’ve never seen a mask make  a noticeable difference on those before! Those disgusting little beads of oil are my #1 annoyance right now, so this turned me into repeat customer. Next time, I’m buying the whole box!

Buy Dr. Jart+ Pore Minimalist Mask HERE.

Standard
Aging, Bargain Beauty, Face, Friday I'm in Love, Moisturizer, Neutrogena, Sun Care

FIIL: Neutrogena Clear Face Sunscreen

fridayiminlove4

 

Speaking of summer, please tell me you’re remembering to wear some sunscreen! Look, I understand, I want caramel thighs, too. But, we gotta put on a leettle bit of sun protection. We all know the more you wear the better, but, I’m realistic. I know you guys. If you’re not going to put on on sunscreen for health’s sake, maybe do it for vanity? That’s why I wear it. The longer people think I’m in my 20s, the better, and there aren’t a lot of 23 year old women walking around with sun spots and wrinkles.

Can I just take a minute and really give thanks for my goth childhood? Blessed be. All those years spent sulking in the shade really saved my skin the usual harm that occurs during the teen years. You can’t get sun damage from sitting in your room and burning incense!

young sarah

Having a really good time at my 15th birthday party.

In the last 17 years since that birthday, I’ve come around on the sun.

Wait.

17, ALMOST 18,  years since that birthday?! The time between the girl in the photo and now is longer than the the time between the girl in the photo and HER BIRTH. That’s so fucking sick. Ohhhhhhhhhhhh no. Things are really on the downhill slide.

Look, I hate to be a downer, but, I’m just realizing that sunscreen won’t turn back the clock. It’s cool though, because, you know, only you have to know the EXACT time on the clock. Not that I’m one of those people who are embarrassed by their age. I’m not. I just want to be 25 forever.

neutrogena clear face sunscreen

I wrote about this sunscreen last year, and my love for it is holding strong. I really dislike even wearing moisturizers that have spf in them, so that really says something. This sunscreen is light and hydrating, without leaving that gross, gritty, grime feeling. Even better, I have never had any adverse reactions from using this product; no zits, no blackheads, no itchy bumps, no residue.

Since I didn’t really grow up to be an outdoors person, I don’t need a separate sunscreen every day. This sunscreen is waterproof, so it’s pretty much just the couple times a week I’m in the pool AKA day drinking and working on the choreography for our “Man, I Feel Like A Woman” routine with my synchronized swimming partner. I’m thinking about aquatic dance moves, and I do not need to be worried about getting a sunburn, ok? I use this sunscreen for my face, ears, neck, and chest; and I use a regular Coppertone, or whatever, for the rest of my body. So far, so good! My face skin is secure.

You can pick up Neutrogena Clear Face Sunscreen pretty much anywhere. I grabbed my bottle at the grocery store! It ain’t hard to come by! Check it out!

Standard
Bargain Beauty, Beauty Tools, e.l.f., Face

Summer Saver! e.l.f. Makeup Mist & Set Spray

Hey! How’s your summer going? Good? Shitty? Just whatever because you’re a fucking real life grown-up and summer *really* isn’t all that much fun anymore because it doesn’t change anything about your day to day life except for that now it’s a lot easier to sweat off all your makeup, and now your car is a rolling heat torture chamber? I can help with the first thing, but, I can’t do anything about that hot car thing except for maybe tell you to try to park in the shade. Maybe get one of those folding things you put in your windshield to make it look like your car is wearing sunglasses? Scratch the maybe on that suggestion, and definitely do that. Now that I’m thinking about it, I think *I* want to get one for my car! Can you imagine how fucking boss the Corolla is going to look in a pair of sweet shades? Summer may not be all that exciting for me, but things are getting very interesting for my car! Someone should make novelty windshield shades that look like real people eyes. Like, Steve Buscemi eyes or Jack Nicholson sunglasses on your car, or something. Nobody steal that idea! That’s my idea! TM!! TM!!

So, we’ve solved your hot car problem. You’re welcome.

Let’s clean up your sweaty, smeared face!

elf setting spray

I grabbed a bottle of this setting spray during a Target frenzy a few weeks ago, and I am INTO IT.  This bottle only cost me $3, but it’s working just as well as any higher end setting spray I’ve ever had.

elf spray before and after

Here’s this little thing I made to show you how well this product works. The first picture was taken in the morning, after I had just done my makeup, and hit it with the spray. The second picture was taken about ten hours later, after a day spent shopping and running errands in over 100 degree weather, and after I went to my bestie’s birthday and ate hella pizza. Hence the pizza. I think it’s important to note that I did not put on any eyeshadow primer when I did my makeup. The e.l.f. spray kept my the shadow in place and crease free. That was super impressive to me because the top half of my face is really greasy, and, without primers, my makeup usually disappears.

Where does it even go? Nobody knows.

Did I happen to mention this spray only costs THREE DOLLARS? What were you going to spend that three dollars on anyways? An app? A big Toblerone? What even costs three dollars?! Nothing good! Except that Toblerone, and this setting spray.

So that settles it! We’ve decided you’re going to buy the Toblerone and the e.l.f. setting spray! It’s only going to cost you SIX DOLLARS! GOTDAMN, you’re savvy when it comes to your dollars.

Standard
Blemish Control, Face, Josie Maran, Moisturizer, Skincare

Josie Maran 100 Percent Pure Argan oil

josie maran

Sephora, 1.7 oz., $48

Do people still say other people are “sprung?” Do people still get sprung? Can you be sprung on things that aren’t other people or their crotches? I’m not sure about the answer to any of these questions, so I’m going to take a big risk here when I say I am sprung on this Josie Maran Argan Oil.

BOI-OI-OI-OING!!!!!

That was the sound of me being sprung!! This blog is so high tech and interactive! Now, imagine you can smell lavender Febreze and chihuahua kisses…that’s right…..immerse yourself in the sounds and smells of my world.

I got a deluxe sample bottle of this Argan oil at Sephora a little over a month ago, and I am straight up obsessed. Although the bottle was small, it provided enough oil to find out that I love this product. I’ve been using it about twice a day, morning and evening, since I got it, and it has made a huge improvement  in my skin. I actually started using it in the first place because I was desperate. For the last couple months, my skin has been really off; it’s been dry, patchy, really uneven and super dull. My skin even looked yucky under my makeup! Foundation would cake up, or settle into creases. I HAD CREASES. It was bad. On top of THAT, I grew this zit on my chin that was throbbing, underground, and about the size of a pencil eraser.

Wait. Everyone knows what a pencil is, right? How old is everyone? Are pencils obsolete? Probably. Pencils were pretty obsolete 20 years ago. PENS FOREVER!!!

Are pens obsolete? Don’t care! I’ll never stop admiring my own name when written with a fancy pen.

Back to the face oil!

Like I said, since I’ve been using this oil, my skin has made a huge turnaround. It’s soft, smooth, bright, clear, and definitely younger looking. I even went out to fancy dinner and a show last week without wearing any face makeup! I just put on my oil after my shower, threw on some bronzer, and that was it. I looked like a gotdanged natural angel. This oil makes my skin, like, luminous. It works SO WELL, that I keep expecting strangers to come up to me out in public and demand to know what makeup I have on. Then, I’d be all, “I’m not wearing any makeup!” And they’ll be all, “What!? You’re so inherently beautiful! Here. Have a town car, chauffeur, and a modeling contract!” It hasn’t happened yet, but, like I said, I’ve only been using this oil for a month.

Buy Josie Maran 100 Percent Pure Argan Oil HERE.

Standard
Beauty Tools, Cleansers, Eyeliner, Eyeshadow, Face, Mascara, theBalm

the Balm Balms Away Eye Makeup Breakup Remover Review

balms away

Amazon, $12.99

So, we’ve established that I love to wear a lot of eye makeup and too much mascara. We know this. So, I guess if we really think about it, we also know that I might probably go to bed a lot of nights with raccoon eyes. It’s not for lack of trying on my part. I really do try to get it off! Every eye makeup remover I’ve tried stings my eyes and/or turns my vision cloudy even until the next morning, so I resort to all kinds of other possibilities. I’ve used assorted and varied oils, I’ve tried all kinds of cleansers, I’ve rubbed and rubbed. It’s all hit or miss.

This is a problem because leftover eye makeup can cause those tiny, hard, underground bumps around my eyes. They’re not pimples because they’re not caused by bacteria. They’re called Milia, and they’re actually little cysts comprised of dead skin cells, oil and dirt. Dirt includes leftover eye makeup. I get these little bumps, and then, even though you’re not supposed to, I scratch at them. I can see them under my makeup, and they really rile up my picking tendencies. Your girl wants to party all the time, and a party for me is a really sharp pair of tweezers, an extracting loop, and a clogged pore. BUT THAT’S BAD. I know better. I went to eight months of beauty school, so, yeah, I know what I’m talking about. Call me Pimple Popper, M.D..

I don’t even really try with real eye makeup remover anymore. I tried this one kind of because it looked moisturizing, but mostly because it was half price on HauteLook and I had a credit.

I am so, so happy I took a chance! I love this stuff so much!

balms away detail

As you can see, I’ve been sticking my fingers all in this. It looks gross, but I think it’s good because it gives you a better idea of the product texture. It has a consistency that can best be described as “Crisco-like.” You glob some onto your closed eye, work it in a circular motion for 30 seconds (take some time to focus on your lashes), then, you wipe it off with toilet paper. If you have a bidet, use a kleenex. I was using a cotton round, but for whatever reason, the TP works better. All the makeup should wipe right off, even the mascara and liner under your eyes, and your eyelids will be moisturized! I always do this before I wash my face with my cleanser, so I wash off any excess oiliness then. It’s a dream come true!

I’m removing pigments, I’m removing mascara that doesn’t play, I’m removing black gel liner that promises 24 hour wear. I’M UNSTOPPABLE. This stuff makes me so happy because a lot of times I’ll skip a serious eye look just because I don’t want to deal with a difficult removal process that doesn’t even clean everything off. Now the only thing standing in my way is my own laziness. As usual! That’s ok, I can deal with that.

Buy theBalm’s Balms Away Eye Makeup Breakup Remover HERE.

Standard
Aging, Badger, Beauty Tools, Blemish Control, Clarisonic, Face, Fresh, GlamGlow, Mario Badescu, Masks, Moisturizer, Ole Henriksen, Pixi, Skincare

My Skin System

makeupfree

Today’s post is going to be all about my current skin care regimen. So, I decided to get right to the point and show you a photo of my makeup free face. There it is. I’m not going to do that thing where I act like I’m super grossed out by my own bare face, because, I’m not. I think I look fine without any makeup on, I just think I look better when I’m wearing mascara.

Right now, I’m pretty happy with my skin. The texture is good, the overall tone is decent. I rarely get blemishes. It’s not perfect, as you can see, I have some dark spots. I also have a little bit of redness around my nose, but that could just be hormonal. I *did* have a giant pimple above my top lip, right in the center last week. It literally popped up out of nowhere. I did my makeup, then I got in the car to leave, and suddenly, there was this huge, pulsing zit. It really gave me a lot of trouble, but it’s gone now. Unfortunately, it left some scarring/discoloration behind. This is a new thing for me. Over the last year or so, my skin has changed a lot, and I think it’s an age thing. My mom has the same problem with scarring and hyperpigmentation when she gets a particularly troublesome blemish. Whatcha gonna do? I just gotta roll with it, and try to find the best products for my changing skin.

skin care products

These are the products I’m currently using. As you can see, I’m not into buying an entire skin care system from the same line. I think all of our skin is so different, it can sometimes be best to mix and match. You do have to be careful when you do this though, because some ingredients can interact weirdly, or cancel each other out. Do your due diligence and research that shit! I always read tons of reviews and information before I buy a new skin care product. It doesn’t always keep me from making a mistake, but I make them less often. When things go wrong, and they sometimes will, I just pull the new product and go back to what I was doing before. I let my skin settle down, and I try again. It’s an ongoing process, but I enjoy it. Also, I really know everyone’s return policies.

Let’s take a look at my ALL-STARS! LEFT TO RIGHT, Y’ALL!

Fresh Soy Face Cleanser – I did a complete review of this a few months ago, and I am still loving it. It’s such a nice, gentle cleanser. It doesn’t dry my skin out, and it keeps it clean. I’ve had this big bottle since June, and although I’m running low, I think I’ll make it through the end of this month. So, it’s not super cheap, but a little goes a long way. I pretty much only use this once a day, in the evenings. Either with, or without my Clarisonic. Hey, speaking of my Clarisonic…..

MY CLARISONIC! – Remember when I waxed rhapsodic about my Clarisonic? I love this freaking thing so freaking much. I love how it removes allllll my makeup, I love how it keeps my skin so soft, I love how it scrubs all my little face crevices. As far as beauty products go, it’s sort of a big ticket item. But, I’ve said it before, and I’ll keep saying it forever, they’re totally worth it. I use mine every 2-3 days, and pretty much every time I need to clean off a full face of makeup.

Pixi Glow Tonic – This baby is kind of new to the crew. I’ve been using it for about a month, and it’s been a great addition. It’s helped to clear up some rough patches, and my pores have stayed clearer. I use it every night, after I wash my face with my cleanser. I don’t wash my face with cleanser in the morning, I rinse with cool water, and then I follow that with this toner.

Ole Henriksen Truth Serum Collagen Booster & Truth Creme – I bought this set as my first shot fired in the war on my aging skin. I haven’t been using it long enough to see a difference in my dark spots, but I know I like the other things it’s doing. I use the serum first, then follow it with the creme. My skin feels soft and velvety, and it looks plump and bright. I use this system most nights, before bed.

Mario Badescu Rose Hips Nourishing Oil –  I’ve written about this here before. At first, I thought this product was kind of strange. But, the longer I use it, the more I love it. Although it’s an oil, it isn’t greasy. It’s got sort of a watery consistency, and it just sucks up moisture. It sucks it all up into your skin. I can’t get enough of how good this makes my skin feel! It has helped immensely with my dry patches, and my flakiness. I use this, in the morning, on its own; and I use it under my moisturizers and treatment oil.

Badger Damascus Rose Antioxidant Face Oil – This is my treatment oil! I use this on the nights I don’t use my Ole Henriksen products, and whenever I feel like my skin needs some deep hydration. It feels nice, the price is right, and it lasts a long time!

Glam Glow Tingling and Exfoliating MaskI’ve covered this mask here before, too. After I ran through my initial sample, I bought the small jar during the Sephora Friends & Family sale. I’ve used it once a week since then, and it has really helped to keep my skin looking clear. I credit this mask for helping to keep my nose pores under control. Those bad boys act up whenever they can. Jerks.

There it is! The system, the systo, the systrain! It’s all trial and error, guys. You just keep looking and trying and until you find the products that work for you. It takes time, but it’s worth it.

Standard