The Body Shop’s Tea Tree Range (Anti-Imperfection Daily Solution & 3-in-1 Wash-Scrub-Mask)

I remember a time when nearly every girl in our school carried a The Body Shop Born Lippy lip balm around. The chunky tub of sticky, sickly sweet (smelling) jelly sat comfortably in my deep Catholic school girl skirt pocket and gave me an odd sense of assurance that everything would be O.K. — my lips didn’t just taste like strawberry (my preferred scent/flavour), they emanated the smell too, such that no one could dare doubt that it was the TBS lip balm I had on. It was the “in” thing and I was “in” because I had it.

(Way) more than a decade later, I can’t imagine going back to using that lip balm (more like a lip candy gloss), but I still think that The Body Shop has some good stuff to offer if you look past their overly scented and overpriced body butters. DSC09266.jpgI’ve been a fan of Tea Tree tree oil and its many uses for a long while now, so when I saw that TBS reworked and expanded their Tea Tree range, I was very much willing to have a look at it and reconsider my previous stance on it — which was pretty much that it sucked. I don’t know what they’ve changed, but it feels like everything (yay).

From the expanded range I picked up the Anti-Imperfection Daily Solution and the 3-in-1 Wash-Scrub-Mask.

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Handbag Staples: Burt’s Bees Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream & Res-Q Ointment

DSC05803Burt’s Bees has a lot of hand care options for just one brand (see here) and I’ve actually had the chance to try out most of them. I’ve never really liked the ones in tubes much for some reason, but the Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream (650.00 Php / 6.49 GBP) is something that I’ve had for a while and like to take around with me when I carry smaller handbags.

Recently, I received the Res-Q Ointment (650.00 Php / 6.49 GBP) as part of an outdoors-themed Christmas set and although it isn’t described as a product just for the hands (it’s more like a multi-use healing balm — will explain more below), I like to use it on my hands because my terrible habit of biting the skin around my nails leaves me with little wounds.

I use the Cuticle Cream and the Res-Q ointment almost interchangeably these days, but they are technically not the same product. Let’s have a look at both of them: 

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A #BetterMe Story, Feat. SkinWhite’s Advanced Whitening Range

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SkinWhite Advanced Power Whitening Soap – 26 Php for 65g, 44 Php for 90g, and 60.75 Php for 125g

SkinWhite Advanced Whitening Facial Cleanser – (Price not indicated)

SkinWhite Advanced Whitening Facial Powder – 67 Php for 20g

SkinWhite Advanced Power Whitening Lotion – 71 Php for 50mL, 123 Php for 75mL, and 235 Php for 200 mL

I tend to like brands that create a community, and really, all brands should strive to do just that. If people are attracted to your products, that’s already one thing they have in common. Why not turn those consumers into a supportive group of friends? Well, that’s exactly what SkinWhite did with their latest batch of girls who formed this year’s Captivate Council.  

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Bad Skin Days

We all have them. And I have them much too often thanks to stress from school — but hey, life goes on and the world isn’t going to stop because of your bad skin day, no matter how much you wish it would.

There are a number of different ways you can deal with bad skin days:

  1. Put some extra effort into making your hair look good (pretty hair can work wonders);
  2. Bring out the heavy-duty concealers and foundations (least recommended option);
  3. Treat the skin as best you can by using light makeup and treatment-infused products; or
  4. Don’t leave the house. Period.

I don’t stick to any one method and I have tried each at least once in my life– #2 being the most frequently resorted to, even though it is terrible for already-stressed-out skin. I like option #1 a lot because fab hair is always a mood-booster. Not leaving the house is just not an option when you have to (duh), and option #3 is the most sensible. Here’s my attempt at being kind to my skin on a bad day: 

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Skin Diaries: July 14, 2013

It’s been two weeks since I was supposed to go see my dermatologist for another check up (bad patient, bad!). I have classes during the week and my derma’s hours are just not the best for my schedule, so it’s been a struggle to even set an appointment… but I have been keeping up the regimen she gave me and while I do still have pimples (mostly on my forehead), I have noticed that my skin is happier in general.

SC1I use the Hydra Balance Gentle Cream Cleanser and the Superskin 2 Toner in the morning and at night. At night I also apply the acne medicine I was prescribed while in the morning I make sure to wear SPF before I go anywhere. The cleanser and toner are both great and I would definitely recommend them to anyone who has combination skin. The cleanser never dries out the drier areas of my face too much and neither does it leave the oilier areas too slick. The toner on the other hand makes my skin feel hyper clean and I can really feel it attacking any existing pimples.

Aside from the actual products being pretty darn good, having a set routine is generally a very good thing for anyone’s skin. It’s just kind of difficult to implement one when you’re used to trying out different products all the time, as I have always been wont to do. Hehe! Your skin hasn’t fully reacted to a product until you’ve been using it consistently for six months, apparently. Can’t remember where I heard that but it does make sense. So this skin dilemma has been good to me in that aspect, I suppose.

As for the makeup I’ve been using after the change, I started by just using much thinner layers of the products I already have and also using a setting spray (UD’s DeSlick). That made a difference for sure but I did still have to pull out the blotting papers sheets often during the day. On a side note, the Clean & Clear blotting sheets are the only ones I use. Any other brand just sucks when compared. I then decided it was time to look for a good setting/blot powder. The one I have been using is a sheer pressed powder that I can take with me for touch ups throughout the day. I have been using it to set my face at the beginning of the day too and it has made the biggest difference. Post on that product coming up soon! :)

Skin Diaries: June 10, 2013

In my last post I talked about my skin’s history and the latest (and biggest) bump along the road it has encountered. I’ve been following the regimen prescribed by a VMV (Hypoallergnics) dermatologist strictly for nearly two weeks now, and my skin has shown significant improvement. I even have dry-ish cheeks again–which she told me to expect–but my forehead and the areas close to my nose are still pretty oily. I have found that my sunscreen (L’Oreal UV Perfect) provides enough moisture during the day time and that not applying a moisturizer at nigh isn’t so bad. After a couple of hours my skin will have produced enough oil for me to feel “normal,” but any longer than that and I feel oily again.

The pimples are less angry… but they are still there and I even had a couple of new ones pop up over the weekend. Now I’m going to do something I haven’t done before… for the sake of documenting this (painful) journey back to better skin…

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My Skin: A History

Way before my obsession with makeup started, I was already incredibly attentive to my skin. At the age of 9 I had to apply creams and lotions here, there, and pretty much all over my body because I had skin asthma. Dermatologists always told my mom that I would outgrow my rashes and hypersensitivity before I hit 12 but by the time I was in my early teens the end was nowhere in sight. I learned to handle my skin asthma and very dry skin by slathering my face and body with extra virgin olive oil and sometimes I had to rely on steroidal creams for when the rashes were really bad. I was a diligent little patient, determined to rid myself of all those terrible discomforts and inconveniences.

By the time I was 18, my skin asthma was pretty much under control and would only recur when the weather changed suddenly… but the years of  using steroidal creams left me with white patches all over my body and on my face. As a consequence of being so unevenly coloured, I learned to use two things: sunscreen and (shocker!) makeup. Makeup–as you might be able to glean from my blog– has been a big part of my life starting from around when I was 19. Now while the skin asthma problem had significantly subsided by that time, I still had very dry skin. So dry that if I skipped on moisturizer (both face and body) for just one day, I would turn into a scaly, flaky, tight-skinned mess. It was easy for me to deal with that since I had already developed a solid habit of moisturizing like a mad woman. My simple facial care routine that consisted of a gentle cleanser (usually the regular Cetaphil), no toner, and Physiogel AI cream as moisturizer. That worked well for me for a happy three years. I guess all good things really do come to an end because exactly one year ago all that started to change (dun dun duuuun–lol, dramatic eh, no?).

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