Skincare Routines for Every Season!

Year Round Skincare

Happy Thursday everyone!  Anybody else ready for the weekend?

I have a special post today about seasonal skincare that was inspired by the people over at Dollar Shave Club.  As a company that provides an economical and convenient way to deliver razors each month, they also recognize the importance of a good daily skincare routine. They reached out to me to share my tips for keeping skin healthy and glowing all year long so let’s get to it!

Spring

Spring brings with it the renewal and resurrection of nature but, unfortunately, for most of us it also brings one not so great feature-allergies!  The watery eyes, itchy throat and nose, and constant sneezing coupled with allergy medication can leave your skin sensitized.  Make sure to wear plenty of sunscreen as some medications can cause skin to become more sensitive with sun exposure and keep your skincare routine basic (cleanser, toner and moisturizer) until you’re in the clear.

Summer

Arguably the most favored season, summer signifies endless days at the beach and camping trips which can also bring about sunburns if you’re not careful.  It’s imperative to not only wear sunscreen but to also remember to reapply it every two hours or as directed.  In the event of a sunburn, ingredients like aloe vera, chamomile and yucca extract can help calm the burning and itchy sensation that often accompanies a sunburn. Dermalogica After Sun Repair is a personal fave!

It’s also good to include some type of exfoliation to help get rid of buildup that can clog pores.  Skip skincare products that contain retinols and AHA’s and instead use scrubs that contain spherical jojoba beads for a more gentler form of exfoliation. Low foam cleansers remove oil and debris without stripping skin.

Fall 

With summer over and temperatures dropping, now is a great time to step up your skincare routine and address any damage/sun spots that might have surfaced.  Incorporating a vitamin C serum in the daytime under sunscreen can help brighten and fade spots over time. Using a retinol serum at night can smooth the appearance of skin and using AHA’s like lactic acid can help both exfoliate and hydrate the skin.

And, with the pumpkin craze that hits the market this time of year, why not add a professional pumpkin peel to your facial.  Pumpkin peels are great for stimulating collagen and elastin production and reducing the sings of aging by softening fine lines and wrinkles.  A perfect skin treat right before the holiday madness and they smell amazing!

Winter

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, celebrating the holidays with dear loved ones and hanging out in the snow filled mountains; however, cold harsh weather can wreak havoc on skin, making it feel dry. Add in all the indoor heating, and you’re left with skin that is tight and itchy.  Combination to dry skin can benefit from a cream cleanser which is more hydrating and a richer moisturizer that contains ingredients like glycerin, squalane and shea butter. Oily and acne skin can still use a low foam cleanser but can implement a hyaluronic acid serum underneath their moisturizer to keep skin hydrated without feeling heavy or greasy.

If your skin is in good condition, you can schedule chemical peels to really resurface your skin and bring about a nice and healthy glow.  Just remember that sunscreen is still a must this season and every season.  Snow reflects about 80% of UV radiation so you want to make sure you’re protected.

I hope you find these tips helpful!

What are your tips for seasonal skincare? 

Stephanie 

 

 

June Favorites 2016!

June Faves

Hi everyone!  How was everyone’s weekend?  We celebrated the Fourth of July at the Rose Bowl yesterday and I had fun.  You can check out a clip of it on my Instagram page here. 🙂

Let’s dive straight into my favorites for the month of June!

Bath and Body Works Waikiki Beach Coconut Body Lotion 

Few scents evoke summer like coconut and this travel sized lotion does a great job.  With notes of coconut milk, plumeria, saltwater breeze, pink passionflower and Oahu Dragonfruit, a small application of this will make you dream of Hawaii and provide you a mini escapade throughout your day, whether you’re in Hawaii or at the office.

Kate Somerville Goat Milk De-Puffing Eye Balm 

I picked this up on a whim during a trip to Sephora and I’m so glad I did.  It’s supposed to reduce puffiness and soothes with goat’s milk and manuka honey. I love the fact that you can just glide it on and feel the cooling effects instantaneously.  It does not feel heavy or sticky at all and for an extra cooling boost, I stick it in the fridge for a few minutes before applying.

Cool Classic Face Sport SPF 50 White Tea 

One of the samples in my May Birchbox, I have used this up this month and I really liked it.  It works well under makeup which is always a plus.  You can read more on it here.

Lancome Teint Miracle Foundation 

The main foundation I’ve used everyday this month, this, I love how fresh this makes my skin look and I’m constantly receiving compliments with this.  Aside from a great skincare routine, this is one of my secret weapons to achieve a radiant complexion.

Lorac Alter Ego Lipgloss in CEO

I’ve circled around these liplosses for a while and after swatching CEO, I had to buy it.  This lipgloss creates the illusion of fuller lips with a nice shine and it’s not sticky or heavy.  The color to me is like a rosy mauve with a tinge of grey and I love it.  Sophisticated with a slight edge, you’ll definitely feel like a CEO.

Laura Gellar New York Baked Gelato Swirl Illuminator in Gilded Honey

A shimmery gold highlighter. Need I say more?  Check it out here.

Cinema Secrets Makeup Brush Cleaner 

This industry favorite makeup brush cleaner cleanses, conditions, and deodorizes brushes in one easy step.  I’ve had a few makeup gigs this past month and this is by far a must-have in my makeup kit as it also has a quick drying formula and leaves brushes smelling faintly of vanilla.

Pacifica Underarm Deodorant Wipes 

One of my favorite items from my PopSugar this month, these deodorant wipes are so easy to use, you can take them on the go, and most importantly, they are effective.

June Swatches

Top-Bottom: Laura Gellar Gilded Honey and Lorac Alter Ego Lipgloss in CEO

Some swatches.  Aren’t they pretty?

June Favorites

What were your favorites this month? 

Stephanie 

 

Sunday Riley Luna Sleeping Night Oil Review!

Sunday Riley Luna Sleeping Oil

Happy Thursday everyone!

I’m excited for today’s post as about a little over a month ago I received confirmation that I was part of the SEPHORA Beauty Enthusiast community. They sent me a deluxe sample of Sunday Riley’s Luna Night Sleeping Oil and while I had tried a small sample of this before, I gave another test run. Let’s take a look at what this highly talked about oil is all about.

Sunday Riley Luna Sleeping Night Oil

Described as, “a next-generation retinoid oil that improves skin plumpness and helps fight the appearance of wrinkles, redness, and pores for visibly clearer, younger-looking skin.” It’s supposed to help reduce pore size, improve the appearance of damaged skin, reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and moisturize and calm the skin.

Pros 

Retinol as an ester

Antioxidant oils such as cold pressed chia oil, grapeseed oil and avocado oil

Improves skin texture

Provides excellent hydration

Includes chamomile which helps soothe irritation

Can be mixed in with your moisturizer for added benefits

Cons 

Essential oils might be irritating for some people

Very fragrant

May be too moisturizing for acne skin types

A bit pricey

Inclusion of dyes (albeit small)

Overall:  The first thing I noticed is that even before I opened the box, I could smell the product.  The scent is laced with chamomile that while it smells nice , it’s fairly strong.  Once this is applied though, the scent quickly dissipates.  The star ingredient is hydroxypinacolone retinoate, a trans-retinoic acid ester.  According to, The Skin Care Ingredient Handbook, hydroxypinacolone retinoate is a mild retinoic ester that decreases effect of sunlight-induced aging and can improve the appearance of acne-prone skin. An ester is a compound formed by a reaction between an acid and an alcohol, significantly reducing the risk of irritation; it’s perfect for people that have experienced irritation with retinol.  As I’ve stated before, my forehead has textural issues and I noticed it was smoother after using this for a few days.  This inclusion of the above mentioned oils and chamomile left my skin feeling very nice and hydrated but unfortunately because I have combination skin, it made me breakout on my jawline.  I would recommend this oil if you have normal to dry skin but if you have acne prone skin or are have sensitive skin, I would tread with caution. I found that I had better luck with Sunday Riley’s Good Genes.

Sunday Riley Luna Oil

What are your thoughts on Sunday Riley’s Luna Sleeping Night Oil?  

Stephanie 

My Top 3 Healthy Summer Tips!

Hi everyone!

We’re into June (my birthday month!) and summer is right around the corner.  Many of us are looking for ways to look our best and today I’m sharing some easy tips for achieving a perfect, healthy summer glow.

Protect Your Skin

sunscreenw

One of the most important aspects on achieving healthy skin is to protect it from the sun’s harmful UV rays. While exposure to sunlight creates vitamin D, also known as the ‘the sunshine vitamin’, it is also responsible for 90% of all skin cancers.  Excessive and unprotected UV exposure accelerates the aging process, degrading collagen that results in premature wrinkle formation and rough leathery skin.  Using broad spectrum sunscreen everyday and reapplying every two hours, especially when outside is crucial and remember that 90% of UV reflection from sand and water bounces back!

Protect From Within!

blueberryw

Summer brings a bevy of delicious rich fruits and vegetables and eating these antioxidant rich foods does wonders for our body and skin! UV exposure and environmental pollution unleash free radicals that cause inflammation, oxidation, disease, and aging in the body- especially wrinkling and sagging of the skin. Because free radicals are unstable, they damage healthy cells when trying to stabilize themselves.  Luckily, antioxidants can help reverse this damage and work as shields against further damage to tissues and cells.  One of my favorite fruits that are in season during summer are blueberries.  These tiny berries are bursting with antioxidants, have a low glycemic index and can be tossed into smoothies or oatmeal.

Take A Break…A Water Break, That Is!

strawberriesw 

As temperatures rise, we need to keep in mind our daily fluid intake.  It’s so easy to get caught up in outdoor activities and forget to hydrate but our body and skin rely on water to function properly.  Water aids in the elimination of toxins and waste, helps regulate body temperature and sustains cell health.  If you’re not fond of plain water, try infusing it with your favorite fruit.  Strawberries are another great and in season fruit for summer.  High in vitamin C and folate, strawberries help with collagen maintenance, provide antioxidants, and boost circulation for healthy skin respectively. A win-win!

What are your tips for summer?

Stephanie

*All photography used here was done by my sister.

Chemical Peels 101!

Chemical peels

When you hear the word chemical peel, usually what springs to mind are horrifying images of red blotchy, blistered, maybe even bloody, skin.  However, not all peels are created equal.  Enzyme peels can offer a more gentle form of exfoliation while a TCA peel can penetrate into the deeper layers of skin.

Here’s an overview on what you need to know about chemical peels.

Chemical Peels Defined

A chemical peel  is an accelerated form of exfoliation that involves an injury of a specific skin-depth.  It involves a process of removing excess accumulations of dead skin cells from the skin through acids, retinoids or enzymes.

Types of Chemical Peels 

  • Very superficial/superficial- performed by estheticians and used for fine wrinkles, sun damage, acne and some cases of rosacea
  • Medium Depth- performed by doctors or estheticians under medical supervision and used for more obvious wrinkles, sun damage and precancerous lesions like actinic keratosis
  • Deep- performed only be a pysician, this peel is used for severe wrinking and sun damage and healing can take several weeks

Benefits of Chemical Peels

  • Improves texture of the skin- looks and feels smoother
  • Reduced fine lines and wrinkles
  • Can potentially stimulate collagen and elastin production
  • Can improve skin conditions such as acne, acne scars, hyperpigmentation, sun damaged and dry skin
  • Increased moisture retention

 Contraindications for a Chemical Peel 

Although a chemical peel is a great treatment, not everyone is a candidate for them.  Being honest with your esthetician or medical professional will significantly reduce adverse reactions. The following list details some reasons that can contraindicate a chemical peel treatment:

  • Recent cosmetic surgeries, waxing, laser resurfacing, other chemical peels or dermabrasion
  • Recent fillers or Botox
  • Use of Retina-A, retinol, Accutane (Isotretinoin), or other medications that exfoliate or thin the skin
  • Allergies to the ingredients/aspirins
  • Pregnancy
  • Herpes simplex
  • Infectious diseases
  • Open sores or lesions
  • Sunburned or irritated skin
  • Medications that make the skin sensitive to the sun

Post Chemical Peel Care

Once your procedure is completed, follow your esthetician’s or medical professional’s advice on how to care for your skin.  Key points to remember are:

  • Avoid direct sunlight for 48 hours and wear SPF as your skin will be extra sensitive to the sun.   Physical sunscreen is best for sensitive skin.
  • Stay cool and avoid hot tubs, saunas, steam rooms, hair dryers or any activity that can generate heat for about 2 days as heat can cause hyperpigmentation.
  • Whether you peel or not doesn’t determine if the peel “worked”.
  • Do not pick or pull on loosening or peeling skin.  You can lightly exfoliate with a dry towel if flaking occurs.
  • Do not wax for 72 hours after a treatment or immediately before.
  • Use gentle products for a few days after the treatment and avoid anything with active ingredients such as retinol.

Before you opt to receive a chemical peel, consult with your esthetician or medical professional to discuss your goals and concerns see what options are right for you.  Also, be mindful of the fact that it may take more than one treatment to see results so make sure that you are financially prepared.

I hope this post was helpful and if you have any other questions, let me know!

Have you ever received a chemical peel?  What was your experience like? 

Stephanie

Best Foundations for a Glowing Complexion!

Hi readers!

Today I’ll be sharing  my top three foundations I like to use when my skin needs a little extra help in achieving a glowing complexion. 🙂

lancome

Lancome Teint Miracle 

You’ll get a nice, dewy look with this medium coverage foundation.  A little goes a long way and it does a good job of concealing any redness in your complexion.  Combination skin types may want to apply a bit of powder as it can tend to appear oily after a couple of hours.

 

chanel

Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua 

Definitely the sheerest and the lightest-weight one of the bunch, I love how it allows your skin to look like skin without flaws.  It melts right into skin and after a while, you’ll forget you have anything on.

laura mercier

Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer Illuminating 

I love the fact that you can wear this alone or mix it in with your favorite foundation to get a customized radiant complexion.  Works really well on mature skin to give it a youthful glow.

What are your favorite go-to foundations for a holiday glow?

Stephanie 

 

Skin Tip: DIY Pumpkin Mask!

pumpkinpuree

Turn leftover pumpkins into a skin treat!

Simply combine about a cup of pureed, cooked fresh or canned pumpkin, 4 tablespoons of plain yogurt and a little bit of honey in a bowl and apply onto clean face.  Relax on a couch or bed while it sits on skin for about 10 minutes, rinse off with warm water and apply your favorite moisturizer.  You can add a little bit of olive oil into the mix if your skin is more on the dry side.

*Always conduct a patch test to avoid adverse effects.

Wishing you all a great weekend,

Stephanie

Pumpkin: Skin Treat or Trick?

pumpkin

With the commence of fall in full gear and Halloween coming closer, pretty much everywhere we turn we are inundated with the sight of pumpkins and alluring scents of pumpkins laced with cinnamon and clove.  Similarly, around this time, spas often start to offer pumpkin peels.   Although yummy in pies and lattes, what makes pumpkins in skincare so special?

Enzymes!

Pumpkins contain enzymes that “eat” old, dry skin cells-think of them like a Pac-Man- revealing healthy, glowing skin. Pumpkins are rich in antioxidants vitamin C and notably vitamin A- the anti-aging superstar that minimizes fine lines and wrinkles. Pumpkins are also high in beta carotene, infusing skin with vital nutrients, and zinc which purportedly reduces the appearance of inflammation associated with breakouts.

A few brands that include pumpkin in their products are Eminence, Ayurmedic, June Jacobs and Murad.

Pumpkin Peels 

Most skincare facilities offer pumpkin peels which are often formulated with glycolic, lactic and/or salicylic acid that provide the following benefits:

  • Improves skin texture
  • Targets hyper-pigmentation and acne
  • Stimulates collagen and elastin production.
  • Helps with the cell renewal process.
  • Reduces signs of aging by softening fine lines and wrinkles
  • Hydrates the skin

Pumpkin peels are a great way to refresh your complexion right before the holidays not to mention they smell amazing!

Love pumpkin peels or have a favorite pumpkin product?  Do share your experience!  

Stephanie

Fall Favorites!

 

 

With fall practically right around the corner, here’s a couple of my favorite things I look forward to this season.

pumpkin

First on the list: pumpkins!  With everything pumpkin flavored or scented abound, one of my favorite pumpkin related items are pumpkin peels.   With glowing skin as a trend, a pumpkin peel can be a great way to attain this look-more about this in a future post!

fall makeup

Fall makeup trends!  Of course you don’t need to adhere to these trends-makeup is after all a representation of your unique style- but here’s a brief overview of what’s ‘in’, this season.

Eyes: Blue shadow seems to be the dominate color followed by metallic silver, bronze and gold liquid shadows and liners. Liner and lashes take inspiration from the 1960’s (think Twiggy).

Lips: Depending on the look you want to exude, lips can range from shades of burgundy, velvet purple or red.  Natural lips were also seen everywhere during Fashion Week.

Cheeks:  Stick to natural shades of blush (or even bronzer) to balance out the eyes or lips.

Lav Tea

Tea!  Although any time is a great for tea, I just love the idea of curling up with a cup of hot tea on a cold night to unwind.  Yes, I am obsessed with anything lavender 🙂

 

 

OUAT

TV shows: By far one of my favorite shows, Once Upon A Time!  Fairy tale stories, villains and awesome makeup.  Other shows I am really looking forward to: Revenge, Bones,and Criminal Minds.

BBW

Scents: Season scented soaps to envelop your senses with!

Candles

Candles!  Always a great way to end a day with while sipping tea.

 

What’s your favorite aspect of fall?