Things I Love to Read

Things I Love to Read: There’s No Theme Edition

READ SOME SHIT.

IT’S GOOD FOR YOU.

New York Magazine’s This Is What a ModernDay Witch Hunt Looks Like is a great breakdown of the latest controversy over an academic article about Transracialism, without going into whether or not the NYMag author agrees with the content of Tuvel’s article. Also, I am so glad I decided against going the academic route!

WTF are peptides? Why are they in my skincare products? Should they be in my skincare products? Reddit is here for you. I don’t have much to say, other than if you’re interested in some of the science behind the latest hyped up skincare ingredient than this the reddit post for you!

Leaves of Grass. Look, if you haven’t read this already then I really question your education and you should fix that. Even if you have, you should go back and read it. I was listening to the Walt Whitman episode of Stuff You Missed in History Class and literally cried while thinking about Walt Whitman’s America and where we are today. Go back and read it. Fight for the America that he believed in.

Amanda Knox going in on Donald Trump is all of my interests aligning in one OpEd. Get it girl. Fuck Trump.

Advertisements
Standard
Monthly Empties

April 2017 Empties Part 2

Empties! Part 2! You know the drill, and if not, here’s part 1.

BE42DD9F-0AFE-49B0-B467-C88B26D3315B

I wanted to cry when I finished my deluxe sample of SK-II’s Facial Treatment Essence. I’ve never used something that had such amazing and immediate results. Literally the moment I first put this on my skin it looked brighter and my hyperpigmentation and red spots from acne started to fade. It was insane. This is, straight up, the best my skin has ever looked in my life. I have used “brightening” products for years now and have never experienced something like this.

Would I buy it again? 5.4 ML IS $179. ONE HUNDRED AND SEVENTY NINE DOLLARS. I could buy the “value sized” 11 ML one for a measly TWO HUNDRED AND NINETY. NGL, as soon as I get a big girl job again and get my life in order I am buying this. For now, I have replaced my sample with CosRx’s Glactomyces 95 Whitening Power Essence and will be trying out various other yeast ferment products. Let me tell you, the CosRX is okay, but it’s nothing compared to SK II.

541EE899-D2A0-4345-8F98-9B363FE10E19

I got a sample of Decleor’s Aromessence oil serum in a GlossyBox*. It’s nice if you’re into essential oils. TBH I’m not a fan of them. In fact, I find essential oils to be really irritating most of the time. I had no issues with this serum, but the smell was so, so strong. It was hydrating, but what oil isn’t?

Would I buy it again? Nah son.

27127DC5-5230-448C-A8F0-724C2288A457

This Lycopene skincare face cream is another GlossyBox* sample. Unrelated to the product, I laughed out loud when I saw the website. It is dated and so, so funny. Tomatoes! Onto the product, it’s not bad. It was moisturizing, however, I felt like it never really sank into my skin. Honestly, this cream confused me. I felt moisturized and I was very aware that if I used too much product it would pill but I also never felt like I used enough. This is witchcraft in a strange red box.

Would I buy it again? No.

7E3D435A-42B7-4BD7-A419-B5FD17AC205E

I’ve had this Lancome blush in Rose Fresque for what has felt like damn near a decade. I had it in the “natural” finish (I believe…the label is worn out and this was definitely a gift from one of my aunts for my grandmother) and wore it damn near every day for the last year. This was my white whale of panning. It was a slog to get through but I actually really love this blush. It’s super pigmented applies beautifully. I have fair skin and yellowy olive undertones so pink blush can be a bit of tricky thing but rose fresque looked like a natural flush, exactly how a blush like this should look.

Would I buy it again? Yes. But, there are so many blushes out there that I want to try that it’s unlikely I will anytime soon. When I finished this pan I immediately bought Glossier’s* cloud paints in Beam and Puff and I love them.

BDD7CB15-B89C-4BB7-9E14-20479EAFFA02

I got this full-size bottle of Biossance’s cleansing oil from another GlossyBox. I was super excited about getting a full size of this…and then I went to look up the ingredients for a blog post and realized that they had recently revamped all their packaging and product names and gotten a spot on Sephora’s website. Looks like GlossyBox got the old stock. I see you Biossance. Anyways, this oil cleanser is great. It has squalane in it, which I love, and a bunch of other antioxidant-rich oils. I tend to not care too much about what antioxidants etc. are in a face wash because it doesn’t sit on your face long enough to really get any benefit, but I make exceptions for oil cleansers. It emulsifies beautifully and is a great second cleanser.

Would I buy it again? Yes. The price isn’t horrific, one bottle lasts a long time, and it’s a workhorse of a cleanser. There are a million other oil cleansers I want to try though so it might take a while for me to come back to it.

5D948617-A1A2-4BD1-B1C3-2EF407AD36E8

Kate Somerville’s Goat Milk Moisturizer has long been an MVP. Basically, whenever I can get my hands on a deluxe sample I do it. I’m honestly not sure why I haven’t just bought a jar already? It’s a nice light moisturizer. Since I had such dry skin I save this product for mornings or particularly humid summer nights. It’s light enough that you can layer it under sunscreen on an August morning and not feel disgusting but still have sufficient moisture. Isn’t that all a girl ever wants? Moisturized, comfortable skin?

Would I buy it again? Yes.The full size comes in a jar, which is kind of annoying, but it comes in one of those fancy hygienic jars where only the product you need gets exposed to air/your hands/whatever. Look at the damn video on the Sephora link.

*affiliate link

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Standard
Monthly Empties

April 2017 Empties Part 1

950F1CE5-E622-40CA-BD97-D7CD1E821421.jpgI have a mild shopping problem, especially when it comes to skincare and makeup. I hoard samples and backups. It’s not great. In an effort to curb my rampant consumerism, and get through as much of my backlog of product as possible, I will be posting my monthly empties and giving mini reviews. I had so many empties this month (thank God) that I’m splititng it up in two posts. Let’s have at it!

812C84AA-AB65-4265-B19F-F133A980B71C

I got this deluxe sample of Chuda’s Healing Hydrating Cream from a GlossyBox* (I’m no longer subscribed, but I do recommend it!). It’s a very gentle and very, very thick balm. I hesitate to call it a cream since it’s texture is closer to that of cold coconut oil or shea butter. I had a cold last month/early this month and it saved my dry, chapped skin around my nose. This stuff is GREAT for sensitive skin.

Would I buy it again? At $150 for 50 ml? No. But I would recommend this to people who have the budget for it and have ultra sensitive and dry skin.

5374E2AC-0F2B-449B-9198-B8EDFD3E450A

My old hair stylist gave me this bottle of Moroccanoil Moroccanoil Treatment. LBR, there’s a reason why everyone and their mom has this shit. It’s pretty great. Yes, you can buy pure argan oil for a whole lot less, but a lot of people do really well with some silicones in their hair products. It smells great, it feels indulgent. That said…

Would I buy it again? No. I prefer straight oils in my hair. My hair doesn’t necessarily dislike silicones but it does better without them. I used to co-wash and only went back to shampoo because It’s so hard to find products that I like that don’t cause build up. I still very rarely shampoo and still try to avoid silicones. Considering my hair does better with straight argan oil I’m going to forever pass on delicious smelling MoroccanOil.

38C98333-CA2A-40AE-8D89-38F718B1EF3F.jpg

I got this hand cream from Lush as a secret Santa gift two Christmases ago. This may be sacrilege but I kind of hate Lush. They are drowning in the naturalistic fallacy and their stores smell so strongly and their sales associates are so, so much. Also, this hand cream kind of sucked as a hand cream? Apparently, it’s supposed to be “lightening and brightening,” if it’s ingredients can really do that it should probably also have a sunscreen warning on it…It’s also not very moisturizing. I actually felt like it dried out my hands. It smells really good though!

Would I buy it again? No.

5E597D39-D8A2-49B6-BE8B-9188C4F4889F

The Ordinary’s hyaluronic acid serum has taken the Internet by storm. I was SHOCKED when I saw the price ($6.80) and bought it, along with a mess of other stuff, when I first heard about the brand. It’s a decent hyaluronic acid serum, and if it had been the first ever hyaluronic serum I had used I might be in love with it. There are formulas out there I like more (I know it’s controversial, but I like Glossier’s formula as a hydrator more than this one). This one felt a little sticky and did not feel as hydrating as I am used to from a hyaluronic acid serum. It kind of just felt like I was just adding an unnecessary step to my skincare routine.

Would I buy it again? Probably not. Look, if I were desperate for a hyaluronic acid serum and I needed to spend $6 to get free shipping from The Ordinary or Beautylish I would definitely consider buying this. BUT I can get Hylamide’s serum (a brand from the same parent company as The Ordinary) from the CVS down the street from me, and I like their formula more.

ACB2A0BB-039D-4AAC-8964-83DB756089D5

Coola’s Daydream Mineral Primer SPF 30 came in my Sephora Sun Safety Kit. Look, if I bought this looking for a primer I’d be PISSED. This is a god damn basic ass physical sunscreen. I don’t use primer, well, I guess you could say that I use my physical sunscreen as a primer, but if you need primer to deal with texture issues THIS IS NOT THE PRODUCT YOUA RE LOOKING FOR. Let me repeat, THIS IS A FUCKING SUNSCREEN. It’s not terrible as a sunscreen, it’s not my favorite sunscreen ever but I didn’t hate it. After a couple of hours of wear, it felt a little drying but the texture upon first application is very smooth and it did not take too much rubbing to get rid of the white cast. However, the last bit of product I squeezed out of this tube was separated and pilled like crazy. I had this tube for less than a month and it already was separating and getting disgusting? Not cool. This is why we put parabens in products you guys.

Would I buy it again? Nah, there are better sunscreens out there.

*affiliate link

Standard
Things I Love to Put on My Face

Things I Love to Put on My Face: Sephora Spring 2017 Sale Edition

It feels really gross that every beauty guru and blog is picking out what you should buy at Sephora during the Beauty Insider sale. Have we all stooped so low and are willingly providing free advertising in celebration of a measly 15% off?

That said, here’s my post on the sale.

Don’t buy something unless you need it. For the most part, my general rule is: don’t buy something on sale that you wouldn’t buy full price. So I am making two very conscious purchases during this sale and nothing else.

This Surratt Beauty eyeliner is shockingly expensive, but it’s refillable and the cartridges are only $18. After I left my big girl job I was on the hunt for a less expensive version of the Stila Stay All Day Liner (I love you Stila) and, guess what, all the drug store versions suck balls. NYX repeatedly has let me down. Elf is a joke. I used L’oreal’s in high school. In came Surratt Beauty. Their cartridges are less expensive than Stila’s single-use pens. Which means I am creating less waste with my makeup and saving money. Buying this during the sale because it’s a one time purchase and I might as well make the most of it, yeah? I haven’t actually tried it yet, it’s online only, but Katie Jane Hughes says it’s the best. Who needs to try something before you buy it?

This Belif Moisturizer is a cult favorite for a good reason. I first heard about it on Stephanie Nicole’s Channel (my favorite youtuber). I had used the aqua bomb before and was not that big of a fan, I have really dry skin, you guys (have I mentioned that before?), so the moisturizing bomb was really intriguing. Well, I have blown my way through ever sample that Sephora could give me while I tried to clean out my moisturizer stash and I have fallen in love. By the time the sale starts I’ll be able to justify buying a new moisturizer.

And that’s it. Don’t buy stuff because I’m buying it. Buy some face wash and use your discount because you’re out of facewash. Buy a new red lipstick because you’re almost out of your regular red lipstick. Chill out. You don’t need another eye palette filled with neutrals. You definitely don’t need more contouring products.

 

Standard
Things I Love to Put on My Face

Things I Love (to Put on My Face) Vitamin C Edition

Basically, every skincare guru recommends Vitamin C, and with good reason. It is an amazing antioxidant, it helps with collagen production, it helps with sun protection, it lightens, it brightens, it’s a god damn superstar. Typically when some skincare junkie is talking about Vitamin C they mean L-Ascorbic Acid. Nearly every DIY Vitamin C serum is made with it. While L-Ascorbic Acid has all of the amazing benefits of Vitamin C it is not very shelf stable and is quick to oxidize. Many, many people recommend keeping serums with L-Ascorbic Acid in the fridge. There are stable formulations on the market, The Ordinary and Clinique both have some, but they are not super user-friendly. If you’re a lazy gal on a quest for good skin it’s best to look outside the world of L-Ascorbic Acid, because sometimes it’s best to just throw something on your face and go. Here’s an excellent primer on some of the different types of Vitamin C available, so you’re not just taking my word for it.

Mad Hippie’s serum, made with Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate, might be my favorite Vitamin C serum that I have tried. Out of all the serums I have used it is the best at fading acne marks. There is some evidence that Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate prevents acne, so for those of you who want the antiaging and antioxidant benefits of vitamin c but also struggle with acne, Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate might be the derivative for you.

Glossier’s Super Glow is a great way to enter the world of Vitamin C. It’s made with Aminopropyl Ascorbyl Phosphate. AAP is a newer derivative of VitC. It’s incredibly stable and inhibits melanin production, which means it prevents age spots, melasma, etc. Glossier’s formula is very popular but I’m not the biggest fan. It’s super watery and I’m too messy and too sleepy to deal with that shit in the morning. It is effective, but I’m to me to use it.

I am currently using the Ordinary’s Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate in my AM routine. I have incredibly dry skin so a VitC derivative in an oil formula is enticing. I have been using this formulation since mid-February. Deciem/The Ordinary is very upfront about derivatives not being as potent at ascorbic acid but I am a little disappointed in this serum’s performance. Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate is a derivative I have not used before, but like other derivatives, it is heralded for its stability and brightening abilities. Unfortunately, I noticed no difference in my skin’s “brightness” and it made zero difference on my red spots (and let me tell you, skipping washing my face after St. Patricks’ day was a bad idea, and this serum was given a lot to work with). I do like the fact that it is a light oil-based serum, my dry skin loved it. It smells like cleaning supplies and I actually have to be really careful about applying it near my nose because the smell is too much.

This week I started a sample of Biossance’s Squalane and Vitamin C and Rose Oil at the end of my PM routine. It uses Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate, a derivative that is frequently found in high-end face oils with vitamin c (like Kypris’ 1,000 Roses). This is less of a vitamin c product and more of a fancy indulgent face oil that makes you feel good. Since I have started using it I have noticed a stark difference in the PIH on my face, I am not sure if this is just because I am getting vitamin c in my am and pm routine or if it truly does outperform The Ordinary formulation that I am using. Maybe my PIH has just started to fade, really, really fast.  Since Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate appears second to last on the ingredient list I would not recommend this to someone who is actively looking to include Vitamin C in their routine, it’s more of a nice little bonus for this oil.

Standard
Things I Love to Put on My Face

Things I Love (to Put on My Face) Sunny and Bright Edition

I’m a pale, pale lady. I wear lots of sunscreen. Regardless of your melanin status, you should too. I also talk about something that’s not a sunscreen. We could just call this, “things I have actually bought and used in the last few days.”

This Missha sunscreen is the tits. The name, All Around Safe Block Soft Finish Sun Milk SPF 50+/PA+++ is a little much but that’s okay! It’s a water-resistant mineral sunscreen that doesn’t leave a white cast. I, unfortunately, had to stop using it because the alcohol in it was way too drying for my winter skin but I’m still keeping it around for when summer humidity hits it in high gear. Also, it’s maybe not FDA approved??? But hey, it’s a great sunscreen!

 Clinique’s been killing it lately*, and this sunscreen is a true testament to that. It has a bunch of the things I like about the aforementioned Missha sunscreen but it’s free of denatured alcohol so it’s less drying. The biggest downside is that it’s $26 for 1 oz (I wish it was more than SPF 30, but I can live with that). Honestly, I will pay a stupid amount of money for a cosmetically elegant mineral sunscreen I can pop in my purse.

I got a sample tube of this Tarte highlighting moisturizer when I ordered my Clinique sunscreen and I am into it. Yes, it’s basically a more glittery/expensive version of the Aveeno day cream I used in high school. But also, body glitter is coming back. This is like the adult version of the glitter sticks you used to be able to buy at Limited Too. While I probably won’t use this as my primary moisturizer, it looks amazing mixed in with my Glossier Perfecting Skin Tint (use this link to get 20% off your first purchase kthanks). It provides a nice healthy “glow from within” and in my mind one can never be too sparkly or too glowy. I’m definitely going to use it as an easy highlight on days where I’m not wearing makeup but I want a little something on my cheeks.

 

*okay, fine, always.

Standard
Things I Love to Put on My Face

Things I Love (to Put on My Face) Glossy, Dewy, Shiny Edition

Makeup and skincare are blessings from on high. Let us celebrate this blessing with a bevy of links.

 

img_4635

@katiejanehughes on Instagram

Katie Jane Hughes’ Instagram is important. Follow her on a journey towards natural feather brows, graphic eyeliner, and glossy lids.

 
Craft glitter is the ultimate shiny highlight. Last time I was in NY I went to The Royal Palms and my friend Karen and I attacked a server because we were obsessed with the glitter on her face. She happily told us that it was just regular craft glitter and she didn’t need anything to stick it to her face, it just stayed. Try it with some minimal makeup for a fresh look and maybe a dab of Vaseline for an extra glossy cheek.

 
The Ordinary’s Argan Oil is plain old Argan oil. Guess what though, it doesn’t cost a stupid amount of money. It’s $6.80. Six dollars and eighty cents. Six dollars and eighty cents. AND IT’S 30 FUCKING ML. I have long been a fan of using Argan oil in my hair but now that I have such an inexpensive bottle I use it all over. I love using argan oil as a last step in my skincare before moisturizer. Seriously. This stuff saved my skin this winter. It’s also great for cuticles and once I used it as chap stick.

Standard