Melvita Argan Oil and Such

I couldn’t wait to hit up Melvita during our Cali trip, I needed another big bottle of Argan Oil which I picked up last year in their Newport store and used it slowly until I couldn’t milk another drop out of the bottle. Even with all of the argan oils I’ve tried, I still love theirs the very best. It’s so soothing on the skin and you just need a little to really moisturize. You can use it on both skin and hair but since they don’t have a store in Denver, I hoard it like it’s gold and just use it as a body moisturizer. It’s a light, EcoCert (Europe’s organic certification) formula that feels like silk. With help from Moroccian Oil’s popularity, argan is now the ubiquitous ingredient touted as a cure-all for everything from wrinkles to eczema and even healing old scars. I think it’s a miracle for KP- those bumps on the backs of your arms that are so annoying and hard to get rid of. This is the only treatment I’ve used that really clears them up for good. It is pricey ($56 for 6.76 oz or $25 for 1.7oz) but it’s pure – only 100% real Argan Oil not mixed with anything else which is what you’ll want to use to see some type of results.

I tried a little of their Ultra-Nourishing Body Balm and of course loved it. I’m not typically a fan of body balms and heavy creams – they usually feel like lard to me, but this one was so softening and non-greasy that I knew I’d use it all the time. It has the most perfect, thick texture so you just need a little to keep your skin feeling smooth all day. The only caveat? It smells exactly like that pink ‘bubblegum’ flavored antibiotic we took as kids – remember that? Well if you don’t, good – you’ll think it smells just fine.

Nigella Oil (which I never heard of before) is cold pressed from seeds of a flowered plant that has apparently been used for centuries to relax sore muscles and purify the skin so they suggest using it on oily and breakout prone. I’ve used Suki’s face oil (which they also recommend for acne) for a long time and really love it’s ability to reduce sebum production and give just a really light hydration. Suki’s oil is a half ounce for $32, this oil is $19 for 1.7 oz and it’s organic. Face oils rule – they’re so light and without the needless creamy bases of glycerine or whatever else – they’re just pure beneficial ingredients that are great for the skin.

So far, Melivita stores are only in Newport Beach, San Francisco, and Seattle with one coming to New York soon. Subscribe to their newsletter to get sales notifications (which they have often) since you’ll probably need to order online to give it a try. I’d would suggest against the haircare line, which I felt was totally worthless and not worth the money at all. Stick to the oils and hydrosols, two things they’ve perfected making.

PCA Skin Clearskin

I love PCA Skin and their effective professional grade line of affordable skin treatments, so when Dermstore.com reached out offering a voucher good on any product on their site in exchange for an honest review of what I chose, I had to get something I hadn’t tried from PCA. My skin is temperamental with breakouts that come and go, so I explored their moisturizers to see if they had something for my crazy skin. I ended up choosing Clearskin mostly because of its almost 200 glowing reviews from really happy customers who claim it changed their skin and now they’re totally loyal.

It’s not designed to be an acne treatment, though its antibacterial properties make it perfect for that sort of thing – it clarifies and heals using vitamins and natural acids in a base of aloe to improve the look of all types of skin. It has a texture that could be pump-dispensed so don’t let the jar fool you, it isn’t heavy. More of a gel-cream really. Dry skin might need to add moisture on top, other skins will find it hydrating enough.  I loved how soft my skin felt and how it alive and clear it looked after a few week’s use. It’s also great for redness, fading old acne scars, and balancing oil over time – which I’m excited to see happen over the next few months.

I would buy Clearskin – especially with the $32 price tag, well within reason for a good moisturizer and skin treatment rolled into one.

Check out PCA Clearskin at dermstore.com

How to Cover Acne Video Plus Best Full Coverage Foundations

My friend Cassel sent me this video last week (below) about a girl with severe acne who bravely takes all of her makeup off (for almost 3 million people and counting) and starts from scratch showing every step she takes to make sure her red welts are well hidden. Though my skin is temperamental at times, I don’t apply nearly as much makeup as she does (I think she has 7-ish steps!), because one good full coverage foundation should do the trick in most cases. Here are a few of my favorite full coverage foundations for when your skin just isn’t cooperating.

I never really fell in love with Armani’s Luminous Silk, their signature foundation that was all the rage a while back – I found it to be too light in weight to do any serious covering. Their new Designer Lift Foundation however, is like a delightfully thin coat of paint (I mean this in a good way) that covers the worst of it while maintaining a natural finish. The bases for most foundations are white or even black, then pigment is added in to create a skin color – but this one begins with blue pearl giving it a beautiful base to create luminosity and cancel out dullness. It’s one of the best foundations I’ve tried in a long while – worth the $65 especially when you’re serious about coverage.

Make Up For Ever HD Invisible Cover $40 is what she uses in the video to get her liquid coverage, it’s a great foundation that I’ve used it in the past for a before and after post. Its medium to full coverage and luminous finish is best followed up by their HD powder so you can enjoy the glowy look it gives the skin. Blending is your friend, use tiny dots at a time and work it in as you go around each section of the face to build up the coverage you’d like until all of your redness is gone.

Cover FX gained fame when it was rumored to be the foundation used to cover Angelina Jolie’s tattoos on a movie set years ago. Good enough for me. Their Natural FX Water Based Foundation SPF 15 $37 is the one I carry in my kit for when I need to bust out some super serious coverage on the most challenging skin. It’s oil, fragrance, and paraben free and will outlast your desire to wear makeup for the day. I’d say it gives the most coverage of the bunch and it’s especially formulated to cover acne, eczema, rosacea without adding additional irritation or causing breakouts.

Check out the video below, click HERE to see the video if you’ve received this post in an email.

 

Hydrating Serums for All Skin Types

For all skin types and those who favor natural brands:

Firming Flax Serum from New Zealand’s natural line Living Nature is wildly popular because it suits all skin types beautifully. It locks in the skin’s moisture helping dry skin to retain hydration, oily skin to keep balanced, and troubled skin to clear up with its mild astringent properties. It’s oil free, mostly organic, and so light in weight that it just melts into the skin.

For oily, slightly dry, or acne-prone skin:

Aloe-based Moisture Intensifier Serum from Lexli is a light, soothing serum that adds moisture to compromised skin. It’s especially good for those who use acne treatments and have some dryness as a result. You can also use it for your daily moisturizer if you’re afraid to use a heavier lotion or cream.

For dry or sensitive skin:

If this dry weather has your skin looking dull and lifeless, you’ll love Hyaluronic Concentrate from Sanitas. It pumps your skin full of moisture by providing a deep down boost of hydration giving your skin a more youthful appearance and your moisturizer a great head start.

Own Breakout Control

Look out Proactiv, Own Natural Skincare is getting a lot of great buzz around their Breakout Control acne treatment that has the broken-out masses making a change a more natural side of skin healing. Own’s nature meets science approach uses stuff like Neem, Bitter Mellon, and Canadian Willow Bark and engineers them to be more available to the skin’s sensitive needs to banish breakouts while locking in hydration. It’s why you won’t experience that peeling and irritation that typically comes along with using skincare meant for troubled skin.

I’ve been really impressed by Own. It’s unlike any acne treatment I’ve tried – it gives that deep down cleansed feeling and clears up breakouts quickly but without any sort of harshness at all. It’s a winner for those who like to stay on the natural side of things, teens whose young skin can’t tolerate chemical-based skincare, and for pregnant women who are struggling with what to use for their broken out skin when traditional treatments are pretty much off limits.

Own Breakout Control

Skincare for the Hot Summer Months

When it’s hot, sticky, and humid, slathering on heavy creams is the last thing you want to do. Here are a few things you can use to get skin that’s clear and cool when the temperature rises.

Gel Cleanser: IMAN Time Control Liquid Assets Oil-Free Gel Cleanser $14

Start with a queaky clean surface right outta the gates. Using a gel cleanser instead of a cream will leave your skin feeling fresh and fully cleansed,  Iman’s gel cleanser foams up big, smells great, and even washes away makeup.

Light Weight Acne Treatments: Intraceuticals Clarity Treatment Gel $89

Heavy acne treatment creams can clump under makeup, especially when layered with sunscreens. I love the lightweight Clarity Gel from Intraceuticals. It’s an advanced formulation that calms redness and inflammation while creating an environment on the skin that’s free of bacteria and irritation. It’s a unique way to fight acne without causing the usual peeling and redness that can make skin look even worse.

Facial Masks to Dig Out Oil: Erno Laszlo Beta Mask $50

Beta Mask is my go-to when my skin starts acting up. It’s so refreshing and cool on my skin, it’s like an instant facial with results that rival a true spa treatment. It isn’t the kind of mask that you need to scrub off either, it’s easily removed with warm water. Use it weekly to rid skin of dirt and oil from sweating and being outdoors.

Back Spray: Glytone Back Spray $28

Running, yoga, and hot summer activities that leave you sweaty can lead to a back breakout – the worst kind mostly because you can’t see what’s going on. Glytone’s Back Spray really works, just spray it post-shower or pre-activity to prevent ‘bacne.’

Body Mud: Borghese Fango Brightening Mud Mask $64

I had a gift certificate to a spa once so I did this body wrap thing which was basically a body mask with hot towels wrapped around me. It was cool, but not $200 cool. I can do the same thing at home using a body mud like Borghese, the experts in at-home spa treatments. Their Brightening Mud Mask is the one I like, it deep cleans skin so well that you can see an difference in the clarity and texture of your skin right away. Perfect to slough away dullness for the time of year when you’re showing a little more skin.