The Importance of Toner

Toner

 

I keep my daily skin care regimen fairly simple.  I do use masks and exfoliators once a week but my normal routine consists of washing, toning and moisturizing my skin.  Recently I posted a blog on Skin Care While Traveling.   One of the key things I mentioned for caring for your skin while traveling was to tone your skin to reset your skins pH.  One of my favorite bloggers and fellow Queen of a Feather Style Junkie asked a good question: What does toner do?

That’s an awesome question because I didn’t realize how many people don’t use to toner and are unsure of what it does. So… I’ve got the answers for you!

Toner does many things from cleansing the skin to preventing ingrown hairs

It resets the pH balance of the skin.

When we cleanse our skin, it disrupts the natural acidity of our skin.  This causes the skin to go into protection mode so that the balance of acidity can be restored,  many times people suffer from oily skin because of this.  Using toner allows the acidity to be restored quickly

It adds a barrier of protection 

Toners assist with closing pores.  Closed pores prevents impurities like dirt and oil from entering the skin.  Toner can even assist in removing certain minerals that are present in tap water (I’ve been thinking about ceasing washing my skin with tap water… we’ll see about that)

It shrinks pores

My pores are HUGE I mean they are just ridiculously noticeable.  I can tell when I do not use toner, because toner  removes oil from the skin and gives the appearance that the pores are smaller.

 

 

 

It’s an excellent moisturizer

Many toners on the the market are humectants, this means they assist with keeping the skin moisturized

It prevents ingrown hairs

One of the benefits of using toners that contain glycolic or alpha hydroxy acids is that they help with preventing ingrown hairs

It’s an excellent skin refresher

Toner can be used to cleanse the skin when its oily or dirty while on the go.  When I’m out on a hot sunny day I like to keep a small bottle in my purse to help remove some of the icky feeling you get from being sweaty all day.

 

My favorite toners are:

Rare Earth Pore Refining Toner by Kiehls

Cucumber Lotion by Mario Badescu

Diluted Organic Apple Cider Vinegar

 

For those that are already using toner, which one is your favorite? I’d love to hear back from you!

Until next time…

Spring Cleaning: How Often Should You Clean Your Brushes?

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Last week I was chatting with one of my good good girlfriends and of course the topic of skin care came up. I’m always on my friends speed dial when they have any kind of ailment or skin issue, since I seem to always have a good remedy or product recommendation. My GGF (good good girlfriend) was saying that her skin was breaking out and she couldn’t figure out why. So I went down my normal list of questions:

How are your eating habits? Good 

Have you been going to the bathroom regularly? Yep 

Are you keeping your hands and cell phone clean? Yes

What about your makeup brushes, are you washing them regularly? *silence*

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Ding ding ding!!!  She had no idea that she needed to clean her makeup brushes, and had been using the same dirty brushes for YEARS!!!   Ladies this is NOT acceptable behavior, your makeup brushes must be cleaned regularly even if you do not use them often.

It’s actually recommended by dermatologists that we wash our makeup brushes daily… But ummmm who has time for that?  So washing your brushes weekly is acceptable.  For me, I’m going to be honest since I don’t wear makeup daily, I wash my brushes about once every two weeks.

Danger Zone

Using dirty brushes on your skin can cause numerous issues.  Breakouts are a huge consequence of using dirty brushes.  This is because over time the brushes become caked with residue, built up product, oil, skin cells and BACTERIA!!!

Cleaning Tips

Cleaning your brushes is super simple, you can purchase brush cleaners from brands like e.l.f., Clinique, Mary Kay and M.A.C.  Since I’m a cheap skate I just use Dr. Bronner’s Castile Oil Soap.  You can also use: unscented bar soap, dish detergent and even baby wash to clean your brushes.  Also, when my brushes are super caked with product I like to use avocado or olive oil to break down the gunk easily.

Brushes can be clean in  a few easy steps:

  1. Gently work the shampoo on the brushes with your fingers (be sure to avoid the barrel so that you don’t cause the brush to loosen)
  2. Press the water out with a towel
  3. Reshape the bristles and lay them flat so that the brushes can fully dry

Whatever you do, DO NOT soak your brushes!!!  This can cause the glue to loosen leading to the bristles to loosen from the barrel.

How often are you cleaning your brushes?  What products do you use?  I’d love to get suggestions from you guys!

Stay tuned as I continue my Spring Cleaning segment and discuss when you should throw your makeup away!

Until next time….

Sleeping Beauty… The Effects of Sleeping with Makeup On

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My schedule is so hectic some days, last Sunday was one of my busiest days. I had church, brunch plans, family to visit in the hospital, grocery shopping…. yea thats not even all of it.  I’m still trying to understand how people are able to keep it together when it comes to hectic schedules, but thats a whole different post.  Anywho by the time I had gotten home that night it was nearly 9:00 and I was beat.  I barely could make it to my couch I crashed as soon as I landed.  What I intended to be a 20 minute power nap turned into a full nights sleep.  I knew I was wrong, falling asleep with a full face of makeup is the ultimate no no!!!

If you think that one night of sleeping with makeup on won’t do damage to your skin, you are sadly mistaken.  When I woke up the next morning I had multiple blackheads all over my chin and cheeks.  This usually occurs when I sleep with makeup or don’t thoroughly clean off my makeup the night before.

There are several things that happen when we don’t take our makeup off at night…

  1. Your run the risk of eye infection – forgetting to remove eye makeup dryness and irritation, which can lead to infection
  2. Skin aging – for every night makeup is not removed, our skin ages by two days.
  3. Breakouts – leaving foundation on can lead to clogged pores and major breakouts
  4. Dry skin – failure to remove makeup can create a barrier that can block your beloved moisturizer from penetrating your skin, leaving the skin patchy and dry

To remove my makeup on a typical night, I use coconut oil and a facial tissue (literally melts the makeup right off of my face).  I also like to wash my face with Dr. Bronners Green Tea Castile Oil Soap or the Love Your Bare Face cleansing oil  from Julep its $28 so it is a bit pricey, if you are a Julep Maven you can get it cheaper when the secret store opens up. I also like to use my new obsession, Micellar Water to remove tough products like matte lipstick and kohl eye liner.

Sometimes it can be hard to get the energy to remove makeup, especially after a long night where partying may or may not have been involved *exit sarcasm*.  One habit that I try to maintain when I have a late night is to keep a box of baby wipes ( I don’t believe in makeup wipes) near my bed.  This way, even when I’m super tired I can quickly remove my makeup with a wipe so that I don’t do any damage to my skin or pillow cases!

What products do you use to remove your makeup?

 

 

Go Matte!!! But, Take Care of Your Lips

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I absolutely LOVE matte lipstick.  Many of you probably remember when I purchased 35 matte lipsticks back in January.  The madness hasn’t stopped with me purchasing matte lipstick, as I’ve recently jumped on the ColourPop Cosmetics bandwagon.  Their Ultra Matte Lippies are LIFE!!!  Even though I’m obsessed with matte lipstick, there is a downside to the wearing the chic and sassy product… Matte lippies can be damaging to your skin on the lips!!!

Regular lipstick typically has three main ingredients: wax, pigment and oil.  With matte lipstick the amount of wax and pigment is increased and the amount of oil is decreased which gives the lipstick that flat and dry look causing it to be matte.  The oil is what keeps your lips moisturized, so if the oil is decreased in the product it leaves our lips less moisturized and can cause the lips to be chapped, dry and many times sore due to cracking.

Its important to take care of your lips if you are an avid user of matte lipstick (ME!!!).  Since matte lipstick can leave your lips dry and cracked, moisturizing and exfoliating your lips regularly is vital.  When I use matte lipstick, there are three things that I make sure i do just about every night.

  1. Remove my lipstick with Micellar Water (some matte lip products are a bit harder to remove because of the lack of oil)
  2. Exfoliate my lips using a homemade mixture of honey and coconut palm sugar to remove the dry layer of skin on my lips (regular sugar is fine)
  3. Moisturize my lips using medicated lip balm or tea tree oil

Keeping this regimen has allowed my lips to stay soft and moisturized, but the moment I forget to do my routine, my lips go right back to feeling like sand paper!

Fortunately there are many matte lipstick collections that do not cause dry and chapped lips. These product have a bit more oil in them, allowing lips to maintain moisture  Here are a few that I like:

Remember, men don’t want to kiss a woman with sand paper lips…  So ladies, take care of whats under your lipstick!!!  What are some ways your keep your lips from feeling the effects of matte lipstick?

The Truth About Beauty Sleep

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  One major key in skin care and getting rid of puffy eyes is getting the right amount of sleep.  When we sleep, its like our body is pressing the reset button.  In order for your body to properly reset itself, its recommended that we get between 7 and 9 hours of sleep each night…  Seems impossible, especially if you lead a busy lifestyle like me.  Unfortunately, getting less than the suggested amount of sleep can take a toll on your appearance. Now, you can understand why its referred to as “beauty sleep”

There are many benefits to getting beauty rest:

  • Skin Renewal – Sleep gives our skin cells time to renew.  Every night when we are asleep, our  cells renew and rebuild.  Have you ever noticed how overnight pimples tend to come to a head?  This is due to cell renewal which allows our skin to push out toxins and assists with maintaining a clear complexion
  • Complexion – Sleep allows the body to boost blood flow.  This allows the skin to obtain a healthy glow.  The less sleep we get, the more likely we are to experience dull and lifeless skin
  • Healthier hair – Speaking of blood flow, it also plays a vital role in our hair. When we haven’t had enough sleep, our blood flow decreases. Hair obtains vitamins, minerals and nutrients from blood flow.  It’s almost like food for our hair.  The less food our hair gets, it is more likely to weaken making it extremely difficult for it to grow
  • Bright Eyes – Dull and puffy eyes can be attributed to many things, lack of sleep is one of them.  It’s pretty obvious that sleep allows our eyes to rest.  We are constantly blinking and straining our eyes, so it’s no wonder that they become puffy due to lack of rest.  It is also important to stay hydrated and sleep with an extra pillow for elevation which assists with reducing swelling.

Beauty sleep isn’t just some urban myth passed on from generation to generation.  Sleep is really much needed and is vital in our appearance.  For me, when I don’t get enough sleep my skin suffers majorly. How does lack of sleep affect your appearance?

Until next time…

Uninvited Guests…. Cold Sores!!!

I’ve had to stop my 30 shades of lipstick challenge because I’ve had a visitor for the last few days. An uninvited visitor known as… A COLD SORE!!! Ever since I was 7 years old I’ve suffered from Cold Sores. When I was a kid they would always pop up right in the corner of my mouth at the same time every single year. Sometimes they would be so painful I wouldn’t be able to even open my mouth wide enough to talk. As an adult, they pop up multiple times a year and now, I’ve been blessed with three of these mutinous craters on my lip.   I always know when one is about to pop up because my lips begin to tingle, they become extremely dry and sometimes they get numb.

Cold Sores, also known as Fever Blisters or Herpes Simplex Virus-1 (HSV-1) can be caused when the Herpes virus enters the body through a break in the skin. This could be a small cut or slight abrasion. Once this occurs, HSV-1 never leaves the body it just lies dormant until activated again.

How are they caused?

Cold Sore outbreaks can be triggered by many things, including: stress, menstruation, bad hygiene, menstruation, fever, dehydration, change in diet and even local skin trauma.   For me, I get Cold Sores when I’m dehydrated and recently due to a severe amount of stress I’ve been blessed with three of these lepers!

Symptoms

For me, my symptoms are always the same. My lips are extremely dry and they tingle or get numb. But, there are a few other signs and symptoms that give the signal that a Cold Sore is about to make its way to your mouth:

  • Sore Lip
  • Ulcers
  • Redness
  • Burning Sensation
  • Rashes
  • Swollen Lips

Treatment

People often laugh at me when I tell them how I get rid of my Cold Sores. I really have a strong distain for taking medicine so I try to search for remedies that can be a quick cure for these Cold Sores. Here are a few of my favorite remedies:

  1. Nail polish remover- I know it sounds unsafe but the chemicals in nail polish remover help speed up the healing process of Cold Sores.   Simply dip a cotton swab in your nail polish remover and hold it on the sore for 10 minutes. Then fill a sandwich bag with ice and place it on your lip (be sure to put a paper towel between your mouth and the bag so that the sore stays dry) within 24 hours the sore should enter the yellow scabby phase and will be completely healed within 3 days.
  2. Lysine – Eat foods that are high in lysine like yogurt, cheese, grains and meats. Lysine is an amino acid that can assist with ridding the body of different ailments and impurities.
  3. Drink plenty of water – Cold Sores germs love to play around in dry and warm environments. Drink plenty of water to keep the area cold and moist so that the blisters are forced to dry out and heal.
  4. Anti-inflammatory – Taking medicines like Ibuprofen can assist with treating the swelling
  5. Moisture – Keep lips moisturized as much as possible with topical ointments and balms like Blistex, Carmex, Abreva and my favorite ointment – Bag Balm!

 

More dos and don’ts of treating and preventing Cold Sores can be found on Experience Project

Honestly, I really don’t know of any ways to prevent Cold Sore outbreaks other than keeping your hands clean, limiting stress and keeping lips moisturized. I feel like cold sores are like a pesky sibling, just waiting for the perfect opportunity to attempt to ruin your life!

What cold sore remedies have you tried???

Zenni Optical

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When I was on my way back home from my trip to Nashville for Thanksgiving, I mistakenly left my eyeglasses on the seat of the plane I was on. Once I realized my specs were gone, I immediately notified Southwest Airlines personnel but they claimed they couldn’t find my glasses (insert eye roll here).   If you’re visually impaired like me, you know how detrimental it is to lose your eyeglasses.   That’s a pretty expensive mistake.

My funds were limited at the time due to a little too much Black Friday shopping ($20 boots at Belk and Macy’s… girllll that’s a deal so of course I bought all of them!) and having to spend $200 on a new pair of frames just wasn’t an option. After talking to one of my classmates and telling her about my dilemma, she told me about Zenni Optical!

Zenni Optical is a godsend for bargainistas like me; their frames start at just $6.95. At first I thought $6.95 for a pair of glasses? LIES! So I tried it out for myself and it was the real deal!!!

You can get your frames from Zenni Optical in just a few steps steps:

  1. Pick your frames
  2. Plug in your prescription
  3. Add any extras (polarized lenses, anti glare, etc.) note: fees may apply
  4. Check out

I opted for a basic pair of clear cat eye frames, since my funds were limited I didn’t add any features. My total came to about $12 after paying the shipping and handling fees.

It took about a week for my frames to come in the mail, I must say that was the LONGEST WEEK EVER!!!! Once my frames arrived they were pretty much perfect. They were a tad bit tight on my face but I was able to adjust it. They also came in a cute box with a cleansing cloth (vital accessories for eyeglass wearers).

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Despite what online reviews say, I’m very happy with my experience with Zenni Optical, and I’ll definitely be a repeat customer!

Check out Zenni Optical for yourselves and let me know what you think!

 

Back to MAC

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I was on the phone with my cousin a few days ago while rummaging through my empty makeup containers.  She couldn’t understand why I was working so hard to find what she considered to be garbage.  I asked her “Girl don’t you keep your empty MAC containers?” She quickly answered “Nah I throw them in the trash.” *FACE PALM AND FAINTS* I could not believe my ears!!!  How could she throw away free makeup??? Then I realized there must be other people out there that don’t know that empty MAC containers equal free lipstick! So, I feel its my duty as a product junkie to share this tid bit of information

Back-to-MAC is a recycling program that was implemented by MAC Cosmetics as a way to be committed to preserving our environment.  Consumers are encouraged to trade in their empty containers so that they can be recycled, and as an incentive they get a free lipstick in return (value of $18).  If you’re a bargainista like me, then free lipstick is right up your alley.

How Does it Work? 

It’s easy as 1-2-3.  Simply save your empty MAC containers (I usually put mine in a bin under my sink) once you get six, take the containers to your local MAC counter.  Trade the containers in for a lipstick of your choice (There may be stipulations that come along with limited release collections).  Some counters have even allowed me to trade my containers in for an eyeshadow, but I like lipstick better.

Note: Lipsticks received via the Back-to-MAC program cannot be returned or exchanged 

Save those containers guys and dolls!  Then let me know what color lipstick you end up with!

 

Happy New Year… My New Years Resolutions

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Happy New Year!!!!!  I’m so excited to see 2016.  2015 was quite an emotional roller coaster for me.  I started My Product Addiction in 2015 but there were so many obstacles I faced that prevented me from making it as great as it could be.  So in 2016 I’m starting off full steam ahead!  I rarely make New Years resolutions but as I sat down and thought about my goals for the next quarter and where I see My Product Addiction going, I forced myself to write down a list of resolutions.

  1. Focus more on building My Product Addiction
  2. Buy a camera!  Canon T3 Rebel would be ideal
  3. Become a vegetarian
  4. Focus on my health goals and getting my body back to being healthy
  5. Save more money and get out of debt
  6. Start a YouTube Channel
  7. Travel to places I’ve never been before
  8. Focus on myself

I’m excited to see what 2016 has in store me.  What are some of your resolutions for the new year?

 

Until next time lovies…

Julep Maven Mini Review + Giveaway

I’ve been a Julep Maven for a few months now and I’m completely in love with it. 

The Julep Maven box is a monthly subscription that gives $40 worth of beauty products each month to their subscribers (mavens) for only $24.99 a month.  
Each subscriber is able to pick and choose what they do and do not want to go in their box each month.  If you would like to add more items to your box, you can do so but you will have to pay the extra cost (totally worth it).  I’ll do a full review on Julep soon but this post, is more about… MY LATEST GIVEAWAY!!!  

In an effort to spread my happiness with Julep to you guys, I’ve decided to give their September box away.  

This box has a $40 value and contains four Julep nail polishes in:

  • Delores
  • Julep
  • Zoey
  • Aubrey

Any nail polish created by Julep that is not red, is Vegan and none  of their products are tested on animals.

Here are the rules:

1. Follow @myproductaddiction on Instagram
2. Repost one of these two pictures
3. Use the hashtag #myproductaddiction
4. 3 entries per person
5. International shipping available at no cost to the follower
6. Spread the word!

GOOD LUCK!!! 

Until next time lovies…