You know that corner on your dressing table, the one with piled up containers of skincare products that you don’t use but can’t throw away because you spent a good amount of money on them; and for some reason you have convinced yourself that there will come a time when you will need them yet you only seem to pile product after product. Hello Stasher!!!
One of the main reasons why people stash products is because they simply didn’t work or live up to the standards promised on the product label. We all know how marketing goes and some of these brands, especially cosmetic brands will promise you heaven by putting the exact words you want to see on their ‘below average’ products.
It’s no secret that I am a make-up lover, but even more importantly, I want to take that make-up off and still recognize myself, which is why I invest in my skincare products. As a former stasher, I got so irritated with how many cleansers, and moisturizers I was spending good money on simply because they had ‘oil control’ or ‘skin brightening’ written all over them.
A lot of the skin issues you will hear most people complain about have to do with brightening, firmness, anti-aging, hydration and my personal devil, oil control. As a pharmacy student, I have learned to not just look at products for what they say they do, but rather, look up the chemicals that are responsible for the results in the ingredients section at the back of the packaging.
After doing some research and trying out products that actually worked for me, I am going to give you a little insight on these 5 chemicals to look out for when attempting to solve the mysteries of your skin. Now I’m not here to tell you what the best products are, but I will recommend products that gave me great results.
1. Brightening – Vitamin C
Vitamin C has in numerous clinical studies been proven to treat hyperpigmentation, a condition where patches of the skin become darker. Through this process, it helps brighten skin which is why many of the top cosmetic brands are now including it in their skin brightening products. My picks are Korres Wild Rose + Vitamin C Advanced Brightening Sleeping Facial and Korres Wild Rose Daily Brightening & Refining Buff Cleanser.
2. Firmness – Collagen
The main purpose of collagen in the body is to help tissue withstand stretching. Collagen gives the skin its strength and structure and also helps with replacement of dead skin cells. Two things that can reduce the production of collagen are aging, and exposure to ultraviolet light.
Because collagen is too large to be absorbed through the skin, it’s less likely to work through lotions and creams. So what is one to do? Collagen injections are a popular cosmetic procedure used to fill out skin depressions. A more affordable method would be to use products that contain Vitamin A, which has retinoid, which increases the production of collagen, which brings us to chemical No. 3.
3. Anti-aging – Retinoid
Retinoid was at one time mainly used for acne treatment but is now being used for a wide range of skin problems, the most popular being treatment of wrinkles. As mentioned before, retinoid works by increasing the making of new collagen which helps skin remain bouncy.
Side story: This one time as I was browsing beauty products in Macys, an older sales lady approached me and asked if I wanted to try out an anti-aging product. Being in my early twenties, I felt a little offended about getting offered a product that I wouldn’t need for the next 30 years. So after explaining my age situation to her, she replied by saying, “now is the time to start.” I’m sure she meant well, but it might have easily come off as a hideous skin shaming comment. Now years later, I have come to learn that you are better off preventing wrinkles than fighting them, and indeed, now is the time to start.
Although not specifically my target when purchasing skin care products, the Fresh Black Tea Age-Delay Skincare Kit which has the Soy Face cleanser, Black Tea Age Delay Cream and Black Tea Instant Perfecting Mask has received very good reviews from users. I have tried the soy cleanser which has become a staple in my make-up removal regimen and the black tea mask which helps rejuvenate my face after a long week of make-up.
4. Hydration – Water
Simple as that! Water should be the first thing to enter your body when you wake up and the last thing to enter your body at night. All these moisture lock-in products are useless if you don’t have enough water-supply in your body to begin with. So drink water, and then lock-in the moisture with one of my favs, the Belif True Cream Aqua Bomb which will leave your skin feeling luxuriously healthy.
5. Oil-control – Lycopene
Lycopene among so many other awesome uses helps to control the over production of sebum. Although sebum helps keep your skin lubricated, over-production can lead to what you consider as oily skin. As one of the most battled skin problems of all time, so many brands claim to possess the secret to oil reduction (seriously, am I the only one who will buy anything that says matte or mattify).
Now if you don’t know by now, I hate to be the one to break it to you, but your oily skin is not going anywhere. Most of these products are meant to buy you some time before the shine starts sipping through. It’s really a battle of how long can the product hold up.
So with that in mind, my oil-control regimen includes a once a week mask session using the Origins Clear Improvement™ Active Charcoal Mask which detoxifies/clears pores. The charcoal mask absorbs oil and dirt which clogs up skin pores, leaving space for products that will benefit your skin. Following the mask, I then use another mask, the Farmacy Hydrating Coconut Gel Mask which contains a carrot extract that contains lycopene. Other than that, most of my oil-control is centered on using oil free make-up and skin care products, blotting papers, and Urban Decay’s De-Slick Oil-Control Makeup Setting Spray.
And that’s all from me today…Wordy but worth-it no?
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Love and Love…Buba.