Skin Tip: Pregnancy and Essential Oils!

Essential oils are great in aiding relaxation or giving you an energy boost.  However, if you’re pregnant, consult your physician if you are planning on using them as their small molecular structure allows them to be absorbed into your bloodstream and may cause problems.

Have a good weekend and I’ll see you next week,


Reader Question: Treatments for Hyperpigmentation!


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Hi readers!  Anyone else excited that it is Thursday? 🙂

Someone recently asked me about what they can do regarding sun spots.  What is commonly referred to as sun spots or age spots is hyperpigmentation. Simplified, hyperpigmentation is caused by an overproduction of melanin (brown pigment that gives skin color) that causes the darkening of the skin.  Below are causes of hyperpigmentation along with possible treatments.

Causes of Hyperpigmentation

  • Overexposure to sun, tanning beds, fluorescent and ambient lighting
  • Hormones/ Pregnancy
  • Medications- birthcontrol, thyroid, hormone replacement therapy (*Note: Never discontinue medication without the approval of your physician)
  • Stress
  • Inflammation/trauma caused by heat, acne, wounds, burns, eczema, etc
  • Age

Treatment Options

  • Exfoliation/chemical peels such as TCA, Jessner’s peels or lactic acid peels
  • Increased cell turnover with retinol/retinoids (Retin-A)
  • IPL/Laser
  • LED Light Therapy
  • Skincare products that contain arbutin, kojic acid, vitamin C (ascorbic acid), lactic acid, azelaic acid, phytic acid, and licorice extract.  Hydroquinone is another option available but it is a controversial ingredient that has a high risk of creating skin sensitivity.  Hydroquinone also must be used in 3/6 month cycles meaning you can only use it for a few months at a time and then cycle off.
  • Sunscreen!  Important no matter what!  None of the above treatments will be effective if you don’t protect your skin from sun damage-you’ll end up right back where you started and can even cause more pigmentation problems.

Remember that these are guidelines and the treatment option that will work best for you depends on a consultation with a skincare professional/dermatologist.

I hope this was helpful. 🙂

Thanks for reading,


How To Disinfect Makeup Tools When You’re Sick!




Good morning readers!  Hope everyone enjoyed their weekend. 🙂

Since a lot of people (myself included) have been sick, I wanted to briefly touch on how I disinfect my makeup/makeup tools when this happens.  Now, I try not to wear makeup when I am sick, (it’s usually the last thing on my mind) however sometimes you need to look semi presentable so here’s my scoop.

Disposable Sponges

When I need a little bit of coverage and apply foundation, disposable sponges are my go-to choice because, well they’re disposable.  What a concept, right? 🙂  As soon as you are done, any contamination that may linger on the sponge goes straight into the trash.


Cleansing brushes on a regular basis is crucial not matter what but I feel it becomes a tad more important when you are sick.  I wash them with warm water and a little bit of baby body wash.  After I lay them flat and they dry, I like to cleanse them again using a brush cleansing solution.  MAC Brush Cleanser and Cinema Secrets Brush Cleanser are my favorites.


An easy way to disinfect pencil-type products (e.g. eyeliner pencils, lip pencils) is to sharpen them.  However, if you had something like an eye infection, your best bet might be to just toss it out and get a new one.

Makeup Products

For lip products (i.e. lip balm, lipstick) I like to spritz them down with a cosmetic sanitizer such as Eve Pearl Anti-Bacterial Cosmetic Sanitizer.  You can also use this on eyeshadows, blushes, etc.  Also, if you need to use a lip balm when you’re sick but don’t want to contaminate it, you can scoop out the product with a plastic spatula.  You can then toss the spatula or clean and disinfect it.

Also, in case you missed it, I did write a post on how to take care of your skin when you are sick, so if you’re interested, click here.

Was this information helpful? Please comment below and feel free to add your go-to items.



Skin Tip: Exfoliate While Adding Hydration!

Using exfoliants that contain lactic acid not only help remove dull, flaky skin but in the long term, they also provide added moisturizing properties that makes this perfect to use in colder weather.  Always follow up with SPF and use them 2-3 times per week or as otherwise directed.

*Side note: If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll see I decided on purchasing the Real Techniques blush brush to replace my MAC one.  Thank you all so much for your help!  I appreciate all the suggestions! Be on the lookout for a review soon.

Have a safe and warm weekend and as always, I’m here for any questions you guys have. 🙂


A Little Thursday Motivation

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Hi readers!  Thank you all so much for your concern and well wishes- I really appreciate it! I am doing much better than last week, expect for a mild cough.

Anyways, I wanted to share the quote above I came across this week that really spoke to me.  I interviewed for a position this week that I felt I would have been perfect for and although they were very impressed with me, sadly I didn’t get it.  I was disappointed for sure but with support from my amazing friends and family, I’m able to see that although it wasn’t meant for me this time, it will be someday.  Life has shown me (and continues to show me) that everyone’s timing is different.  Some people are blessed with wonderful opportunities at an earlier stage while others take a longer road to arrive to where they want to be and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.  When I look back at all the obstacles I have faced, and believe me when I say they have been brutal, I am in awe of how strong I have become.   I reflect on the exciting and unique opportunities I have been able to live because of them.

So I leave you with this message my dear readers.  Everything has a way of falling into place when the time is right.  Never stop going after what you want whether it’s in life or love.  Move forward with the faith that if it’s meant for you, it will be.  And if it’s not, well, just know that something better will come along that will make you see why other things never worked out the way you had hoped.

*Side note: The picture above is courtesy of my talented sister’s photography 🙂

Enjoy the rest of your day,


Stephie Estie Turns 1!



Hello wonderful readers!  Today is a special day because my blog turns 1!  My how time flies. 🙂

A little history behind my blog:  The thought of starting a blog had always been something I wanted to attempt but I always hesitated because quite honestly, it’s scary to put yourself out there.  Would anyone read my blog?  What kind of comments would people make?  With so many blogs out there, why would mine matter? All these questions and doubts would circulate my head.  So, I started writing skin tips once a week on my personal Facebook page when a friend of mine suggested I make a page for it.  With her guidance and encouragement, I was able to create my blog and my very first post a year ago and voila! Stephie Estie was born. (Thank you Ms. Sarah!!)

I’ve hit a few rough patches and it took me a bit longer to get the hang of how this all works but I found that I really enjoy writing and sharing my experiences.  And, I am happy to say that I have a great group of followers who look forward to reading my posts and have even been considered a ‘must-read blog’ or ‘favorite’ blog from bloggers and readers alike! (Insert overly enthusiastic girlish squeal here) 🙂

Of course, none of this is possible without you!  Thank you all so much for taking time out of your busy schedules to read my posts.  Thank you for commenting, for your feedback, for your support, for being amazing.   It means the world to me as this blog is just as much yours as it is mine.  Thank you once again and as you know my blog is always open for you.

*Note: I did have a giveaway planned but because I got really sick and had a few things come up, I’m postponing it for a week or two.  I will keep you posted with the details though. 🙂 

Let’s see what this year has in store,


Skin Tip: Simple Sugar Lip Scrub!

Treat your lips to a sweet treat this Valentine’s Day weekend with an easy scrub.  Just combine small amounts of sugar (brown sugar also works) and honey, apply the mixture on your lips and buff away dead and flaky skin.  Remove with warm water and top it off with your favorite lip balm.  The end result?  A soft, kissable pout.  Bonus: Your lip color will apply more smoothly and evenly.

Personal update:  I know I have been MIA for the last few days and I apologize but I was slammed with some kind of variation of the flu.  I’ve been battling a stubborn fever, congestion that makes my head feel it’s ready to explode and a painful ear infection. 😦 I know I have some catching up to do and comments to get back to so please bear some patience-I will get back to you. 🙂

I hope all of you have a lovely weekend and thank you for the support.


My Morning Skincare Routine!

Morning Skincare Routine

Hello readers!  It’s a lovely day here in sunny California which is always great but I’m feeling under the weather.  At the beginning of the year, I always manage to get sick and though I thought I had broken this spell, I’m sadly mistaken. 😦  Anywho, I hope all of you are doing well.

I often get asked what my morning skincare routine so here it is.  Since I am often testing and trying new items, the product lines I use vary but the gist of my routine is the same.

1) CleansingDermalogica Special Cleansing Gel  I used this when I was in school and I really liked it so I pick one up every so often when I go to IDI (Dermalogica Headquarters).  It’s a basic, soap free cleansing solution that foams but doesn’t feel harsh.

2) ToningDermalogica Multi-Active Toner   Again, another product I used in school that I liked, I spritz this toner to wipe away any residue left after cleansing- you’d be surprised by what’s left behind after you cleanse!  It’s refreshing, doesn’t sting and has the humectant Sodium PCA.

3) SerumRenee Rouleau Vitamin C & E Treatment I always make sure to incorporate a vitamin C serum in the morning.  It gives your skin antioxidants to fight free-radicals, results in a reduction of fine lines and wrinkles, promotes the formation of collagen and can also reduce pigmentation due to its brightening properties.  (For more information on vitamin C, click here.)  Paired underneath sunscreen, it gives your skin extra antioxidant protection your skin needs from the sun’s harmful rays, which plays a prominent role in the breakdown of collagen.  This serum is one of the more hydrating vitamin C serums I have tried and I love the fact that it incorporates vitamin E, which nourishes the skin and enhances the effects of vitamin C.  (For more information on vitamin E, click here).  Apply to the face and extend to the neck and chest area.

4) Moisturizer/SunscreenDermalogica Dynamic Skin Recovery SPF 50 A staple in any skincare routine is sunscreen!  I’ve purchased this product several times because it combines moisturizer and sunscreen in 1- a true time  saver. It’s light-weight, works well underneath makeup and is formulated with antioxidant white tea.

5) Eye CreamRenee Rouleau Total Eye Repair Cream  Using an eye cream is a must to hydrate the eye area, especially during the colder months, to minimize the appearance of wrinkles.  This one contains hyaluronic acid and firming peptides.  It does not irritate my eyes, which some eye creams tend to do, and absorbs quickly into skin leaving it moisturized without a heavy feel.  As for the firming effect, my eye area isn’t lax so I did not notice a difference in this aspect.

Disclaimer:  The Renee Rouleau products were recommended and given to me by Renee (thank you!), however, ALL reviews are based on my own honest opinions and experiences. 

I hope you found this helpful on how I keep my skin healthy and protected! 🙂

Have a great Tuesday,



Skin Tip: Dealing With Product Overload!

Peptides! Retinol! Alpha hydroxy acids!

These are all fantastic ingredients in skincare but do you need them all once? Not necessarily.  In fact, using products with too many active ingredients all at once can result in irritated skin.  Always introduce these products slowly into your skincare regimen, use small amounts and follow your esthetician’s/docotor’s protocol on how to use them.  And, if you happen to experience product overload, stick to a basic routine: basic cleanser, basic toner and moisturizer until your symptoms subside.

Thanks for reading and have a wonderful weekend, 



Help Me Decide on a Blush Brush!


510mn-blushHello readers!  Hopefully all is well in your world. 🙂

For today’s post, I need your input.  I’ve had by beloved M.A.C. blush brush since 2006 and sadly it’s showing it’s age now and shedding like crazy.   I am on the hunt for a new one and while I wouldn’t mind purchasing another M.A.C. brush-it really is great- I can’t ignore the plethora of amazing brushes that have surfaced in recent times.

So, my dear readers, I’d love to hear from you: what blush brush would you recommend?  You’ll not only be helping me but also anyone else who is currently looking for a new brush. 🙂

I look forward to hearing from you,