Steps To Applying Flawless Foundation

Creating a flawless foundation may appear difficult especially after several attempts that will end up with blotches, patches and caking. When you look at magazines, you will see cover girls with full coverage and flawless foundation—no no caking, streaks, or patches. The truth is, there are tips that you can follow to achieve a flawless foundation application:

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•Wash your face.
It is always important to have a clean face before applying foundation. Using a good facial cleanser, gently cleanse your face. Continue to work on a lather. Remember to wash and not rub. Rinse your face thoroughly with lukewarm water.

•Apply a toner.
Apply a facial toner after washing your face. It removes the excess dirt from your skin. It also removes the residues from your facial cleanser. It not only freshens up your skin but also balances you skin pH after washing. It is best to chill the toner before use to help close your pores.

•Apply moisturizer.
Facial moisturizers help solve issues such as drying, oiliness, and aging of the skin. Most of the moisturizers out in the market contain organic ingredients that help keep the skin healthy-looking. If you have sensitive skin, it is best to choose a moisturizer that has a label saying “non-comedogenic” and “fragrance-free”. For the blemish-prone skin, experts recommend the use of tinted moisturizer. This type helps even out the skin tone and discretely covers the blemishes of the skin. Apply a hefty amount of moisturizer. This is good for the skin since it re-hydrates the face and brings back the lost moisture due to facial cleansing and chemical exposure. Be sure to apply the moisturizer all over the face and the neck. Let it stand for about ten minutes before proceeding to the next step.

•Apply primer.
Apply a primer over your face. This serves as a makeup base for smoother application of make up. Primer can help prolong your makeup application. The advanced formulation of makeup primers helps treat, protect and smooth the skin. It also helps in fighting off the appearance of wrinkles caused by sun exposure and aging. Best buys are those that contain botanical extracts that help diminish redness and blemishes. Some primers also contain sunscreen protection to protect the skin from the harmful UV rays emitted by the sun.

•Choose a foundation.
Select a foundation that is suited to your skin tone. Try on at least three different tones on the back of your hand to determine the best foundation that suits your skin. Apply a small streak from the lower cheek to the upper cheek evenly using a dabbing motion.

•Foundation application.
After choosing the best foundation tone, you can now proceed to coverage. Apply a quarter cent-amount of foundation at the back of your hand. Dip a damp makeup sponge or foundation brush into the foundation. Make sure to keep both sides coated. Apply the makeup in dots over your forehead, cheeks, chin and neck. Blend in an outward motion working toward the hairline and jaw line. Use gentle outward strokes. Finish off by brushing some loose powder over the face and neck.

For a slightly sun-kissed look, apply a hint of bronzer over the cheeks, chin and forehead. Applying your makeup foundation using these methods could help you achieve a flawless look.

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About Brazilian Waxing

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Brazilian Waxing – What to Expect 

Does it hurt?

This hair removal type is A little painful, but the results are well worth it. You’ll eventually get used to the discomfort. Routine waxing helps to reduce the pain, and will minimize irritation. We recommend taking 2 ibuprofen an hour before your appointment. Better safe than sorry.

Do consult Mother Nature before booking your waxing appointment. Don’t attempt waxing the three days prior to, and the first three days of your menstrual cycle. Your skin is much more sensitive at that time and waxing will be much more painful.

How long should my hair be before I remove it with wax?

Hair growth should be at least 1/4″ but not longer than 1/2″ (about 2 week’s growth) for the most effective waxing.

How long should I wait to get waxed after I’ve shaved?

You need some growth for the wax to adhere to the hair. Hair should be at least 1/4″ (about 3-4 week’s growth) for the most effective waxing. Do not shave between appointments. This makes the hair more resistant to future waxing.

How long will waxing last?

The results will last anywhere from ten days to three weeks. We recommend booking appointments every 4 to 6 weeks. The hair eventually gets softer and thinner every time it grows back.

What can I expect afterwards?

Let your skin heal. After you get your Brazilian wax, it is likely that your skin may be slightly irritated and possibly red. If this happens it will usually clear in a few days. Do not exfoliate or spray tan and avoid sun and heat for the first 24hrs, these will inflame the skin.

Health Benefits Of Honey

honey

 

1. Prevent cancer and heart disease:
Honey contains flavonoids, antioxidants which help reduce the risk of some cancers and heart disease.

2. Reduce ulcers and other gastrointestinal disorders.
Recent research shows that honey treatment may help disorders such as ulcers and bacterial gastroenteritis. This may be related to the 3rd benefit…

3. Anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-fungal:
“All honey is antibacterial, because the bees add an enzyme that makes hydrogen peroxide,” said Peter Molan, director of the Honey Research Unit at the University of Waikato in New Zealand.

4. Increase athletic performance.
Ancient Olympic athletes would eat honey and dried figs to enhance their performance. This has now been verified with modern studies, showing that it is superior in maintaining glycogen levels and improving recovery time than other sweeteners.

5. Reduce cough and throat irritation:
Honey helps with coughs, particularly buckwheat honey. In a study of 110 children, a single dose of buckwheat honey was just as effective as a single dose of dextromethorphan in relieving nocturnal cough and allowing proper sleep.

6. Balance the 5 elements:
Honey has been used in ayurvedic medicine in India for at least 4000 years and is considered to affect all three of the body’s primitive material imbalances positively. It is also said to be useful useful in improving eyesight, weight loss, curing impotence and premature ejaculation, urinary tract disorders, bronchial asthma, diarrhea, and nausea.

Honey is referred as “Yogavahi” since it has a quality of penetrating the deepest tissues of the body. When honey is used with other herbal preparations, it enhances the medicinal qualities of those preparations and also helps them to reach the deeper tissues.

7. Blood sugar regulation:
Even though honey contains simple sugars, it is NOT the same as white sugar or artificial sweeteners. Its exact combination of fructose and glucose actually helps the body regulate blood sugar levels. Some honeys have a low hypoglycemic index, so they don’t jolt your blood sugar. (Watch this video Sweetener Comparison where I compare stevia, brown rice syrup, honey, molasses and agave, and discuss the strengths and weaknesses of each.)

8. Heal wounds and burns:
External application of honey has been shown to be as effective as conventional treatment with silver sulfadiazene. It is speculated that the drying effect of the simple sugars and honey’s anti-bacterial nature combine to create this effect.

9. Probiotic:
Some varieties of honey possess large amounts of friendly bacteria. This includes up to 6 species of lactobacilli and 4 species of bifidobacteria. This may explain many of the “mysterious therapeutic properties of honey.”

10. Beautiful skin:
Its anti-bacterial qualities are particularly useful for the skin, and, when used with the other ingredients, can also be moisturizing and nourishing! For a powerful home beauty treatment for which you probably have all the ingredients in your kitchen already, read Carrot Face Mask.

Different honeys have different flavonoid profiles, depending on the floral source of the nectar.

Types of Honey (most popular)

Alfalfa
Blueberry
Buckwheat
Clover
Manuka
Orange Blossom
Wildflower
There are at least 40 types – each one has distinctive taste and unique properties.
Darker honey tends to have higher antioxidant levels.
Monofloral honey (honey from a single plant species) usually has the lowest glycemic index (GI). For example, locust honey from the Black Locust tree has a GI of 32. Clover honey, which is used commercially, has the highest glycemic index at 69.

Honey Suggestions:

If you want to get the goodness from your honey, make sure it is pure and raw.
Raw honey contains vitamins, minerals and enzymes not present in refined honey.

Honey Cautions:

Best not to feed to infants. Spores of Clostridium botulinum have been found in a small percentage of honey in North America. This is not dangerous to adults and older children, but infants can have a serious reaction of illness in the first year. Do not add honey to baby food or use as a soother to quiet a fussy or colicky baby. Most Canadian honey is not contaminated with the bacteria causing infant botulism, but it’s still best not to take the chance.
Honey is a sugar, so do not eat jars full of it if you value your good health and want to maintain a healthy weight. It has a high caloric value and will put you on a sugar high and low.
To cook with honey or not: There is some controversy about cooking with honey, although I cannot substantiate it from all of my research about honey.

“…when honey is heated above 108 degrees Fahrenheit, it becomes transformed into a glue-like substance that is extremely difficult to digest. This substance is considered a toxin (ama), since it adheres to the tissues of the body and is very difficult to remove.” (quote from the Ayurveda Wellness Center)

That said, I am not convinced that we should not cook with honey, although I am not using it in most of my cooked recipes until I get to the bottom of this

Vitamin C Beauty Benefits

Improves Skin Tone and can Repair Skin Damage

While you’ve likely been focusing on getting all of your  vitamins via your nutrition, the good news is vitamins are also beneficial to  your skin through skin care products! One of the most popular vitamin additions  to skin care products is Vitamin C. This anti aging vitamin has been studied  and confirmed as being an extremely effective addition to skin care routines.  When antioxidant Vitamin C is added to your skin, it helps your skin get rid of  free radicals. Since free radicals can greatly damage your skin, the use of  Vitamin C is vital to your skin health! In addition, Vitamin C can help your  body rev up its production of collagen.

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Beauty Benefits of  Vitamin C

On a beauty note, adding Vitamin C to your skin care routine  can help you look great on many levels. The topical use of Vitamin C  revitalizes your skin, allowing for improvement in the tone and texture! You  will instantly look younger with smooth and silky skin on your face and body. It  works to protect you against UVB rays and can help you combat sun damage,  wrinkles and photodamage. These are some of the most common skin worries of  women today.

Effective Topical  Products with Vitamin C For Skin Care

Cosmetic gurus and their sources are taking note of the  power behind Vitamin C and are adding it and its derivatives to many products  on the market. Derivatives like ascorbyl palmitate and ascorbic acid are  commonly used, because they are less irritating than Vitamin C itself. Those  with sensitive skin can still reap the protection and natural benefits of  Vitamin C, without any irritation.

Beneficial Vitamin C  in Cosmetics

When you start your venture for Vitamin C induced skin care  products, there are a few things to remember. First, remember there are many  claims being made from various companies on their skin care products. To find  the best products with Vitamin C, be sure to look at the color of the product.  Those products with a yellow or brown tint should be avoided. Vitamin C often  turns these colors when exposed to air and thus becomes ineffective in creating  collagen and elastic.

Vitamin C Offers  Cosmetic Benefits

Many women would rather sit through a chemical peel or a  microdermabrasion session for skin care repair and conditioning. However, using  a daily Vitamin C product can help you repair and prep your skin everyday. You  can get products which include Vitamin C derivatives (L-ascorbic acid and  others) for use at home. Therefore, you can continuously reap the benefits of  Vitamin C, without heading to the spa.

Benefits of Antioxidants

Antioxidants are substances that may protect cells in your body from free radicaldamage that can occur from exposure to certain chemicals, smoking, pollution, radiation, and as a byproduct of normal metabolism. Dietary antioxidants include selenium, vitamin A and related carotenoids, vitamins C and E, plus variousphytochemicals such as lycopene, lutein, and quercetin.

You can find these antioxidants in many different foods that you’re probably eating right now.

There are large amounts of antioxidants in fruits, vegetables, nuts, and whole grainsand smaller amounts of antioxidants in meats, poultry and fish. Junk foods, such as highly processed fast foods tend to be much lower in antioxidants. No surprise.

Health Benefits of Antioxidants

Consuming foods rich in antioxidants may be good for your heart health and may also help to lower your risk of infections and some forms of cancer.

Increase your antioxidant intake by eating more nuts, seeds, legumes, fruits and vegetables.

Antioxidants in Dietary Supplements

Antioxidants are available as dietary supplements, but research doesn’t indicate that these supplements are beneficial. While research supports increasing your intake of dietary sources, the results are not as impressive when the individual antioxidants are extracted and studied alone.

Antioxidant extracts often show remarkable results in laboratory studies (test tubes, lab dishes and sometimes in lab animals), but when they’re used in human clinical trials, the results for disease and death prevention have been disappointing. One exception was the National Eye Institute study of age-related eye disease, which suggested that acombination of antioxidants reduced the risk of developing advanced stages of age-related macular degeneration.

More Is Not Better!

Some antioxidant supplements may be detrimental to your health when taken in large doses and may interact with certain medications. Large amounts of vitamin A supplements may cause birth defects when taken by pregnant women, and may increase your risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer.

Taking large doses of vitamin E (over 400 International Units per day) has been associated with a possible increase in overall mortality. But, this risk doesn’t apply to a typical multivitamin supplement. The amounts of vitamins A and E included in multivitamin tablets are small in comparison.

If you’re thinking about taking larger amounts of any antioxidant supplements, you should speak with a healthcare provider first.

Homemade Facial Mask Tips

Homemade moisturizing face mask recipe is a natural, easy to make and an inexpensive way to get rid of puffy and irritated skin. It will also give you a healthy glowing skin. Here is one of the best homemade moisturizing mask recipes for face.

Homemade Moisturizing Face Mask Recipe

Things you’ll need:

Plain yogurt – 1 cup

Aloe Vera gel – 4 tablespoons

Method:

– Pour 1 cup of plain yogurt in a small bowl.

– Add in 4 tablespoons of fresh aloe Vera gel and mix the ingredients together thoroughly.

– Apply this homemade moisturizing facial mask to your clean face using a gentle circular motion.

– Make sure to apply to the eyelids as well, but avoid directly getting it into the eyes.

– Leave it on for about 2 to 5 minutes and then rinse thoroughly.

– Use it on a regular basis.

Homemade egg white face mask Egg white is used in various homemade skin and hair care recipes. It is fully loaded with skin friendly properties. It helps improve skin texture and tone. It contains an ingredient, ovalbumin which is very helpful for treating skin related infections. Lysozyme, found in egg white is known for its skin clearing properties Note:- Do not use it over dry skin and it is better to not use is more than twice a week. Things you’ll need:-1 egg white1 teaspoon milk Few drops of honey Method:– Mix all ingredients together.- Apply this mask on your face using a brush or your fingers and avoid it around your mouth and eye areas.- Leave it on for about 30 minutes.- In order to remove this mask, try to splash some lukewarm water on the face then gently remove the mask by rubbing it with your hands. Now, wash your entire face and neck with lots of water. Benefits of egg white mask on skin:– It is good for shrinking the pores. Which intern, helpful in the prevention of many skin related problems like acne, pimples etc.- Egg white masks clean the skin very deeply, making it soft, supple and bright at the same time.- It is well known for skin tightening.- It is beneficial in the prevention of fine lines and wrinkles on the face and the neck.- It is good for oily skin as, it helps remove excess oil from the skin,- It is good for you, if you want to get a radiant glow on your face. Homemade olive oil face mask Olive oil is an excellent weapon to combat many skin related problems like dry skin, premature aging, wrinkles etc. It is loaded with skin softening and skin moisturizing properties. Here are some homemade olive oil face mask recipes: Homemade olive oil face mask recipes NORMAL SKIN Things you’ll need: Curd – 1 teaspoon Olive oil – ½ teaspoon olive oil Parsley juice- ½ teaspoon- Make a mixture by mixing all the ingredients give above.- Apply this resultant mixture on your face.- Leave it on for 15-20 minutes, and then wash with warm water. Cucumber – olive oil cleanser and softener Juice of ½ cucumber Olive oil – ½ teaspoon Sour milk – 1 teaspoon- Mix all the ingredients and apply this mixture on the face and neck.- Leave it on for 20 minutes, rinse with cold water. DRY SKIN Onion – olive Oil combo:1 onion Olive oil – 1 teaspoon Honey – 1 teaspoon- Bake a small onion with peel in the oven, clean the onion and pound.- Now, add other ingredients to form a fine paste.- Apply this mixture on your face for 15-20 minutes. Beans – olive oil for dry skin5 to 7 boiled white beans Olive oil – 1 teaspoon Lemon juice – 1 teaspoon- Knead 5-6 boiled white beans and add other ingredients.- Apply the resultant mixture on your face for 20 minutes before rinsing with warm water. OILY SKIN Tomato juice- olive oil mask Tomato juice Starch – 1 teaspoon Olive oil – ½ teaspoon- Mix all ingredients together.- Put the mask on the face. Wash with warm water in 20 minutes. Oat flour-olive oil combo Oat flour – 1 teaspoons our milk – 1 teaspoon Olive oil – 1 teaspoon Kitchen salt- ¼ teaspoon- Mix all ingredients.- Apply the resultant mixture on your face for 20 minutes.- Wash with warm water. SENSITIVE SKIN- Mix sauce from ¼ banana + 1 teaspoon of grated fresh cucumber +1 teaspoon olive oil. – Apply this mask on your face .- Leave it on for thirty minutes.- Wash with cool water. ALL SKIN TYPES- Mince dill and mix 2 tablespoons of it with 1 teaspoon olive oil.- Now, add pounded oat flakes to mixture.- Apply it on your face .- Wait for 15 minutes before washing with warm water. ANTI AGING MASK- Make a mixture by mixing ¼ lemon + 1 teaspoon olive oil +1 yolk + some pounded oat flakes.- Apply it on your face and neck. for 20 minutes.- Then wash with warm water.

Warning: Considerations Before using Makeup on Acne-Prone Skin

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But for those of us who haven’t found the best acne treatment, makeup may seem like the only cure. Unfortunately, makeup can cause acne and may make blackheads, whiteheads, pimples and inflammation worse. Like other non-cleansing products applied to the skin, makeup can clog skin pores.

As you frantically search to find the best acne treatment product, you may come down with a bad case of the catch-22. You’re so embarrassed of your acne that you refuse to go anywhere without wearing makeup, but you’re also worried that wearing makeup today may make you break out even more tomorrow. So can makeup really make your acne worse? And, if so, what is the best acne treatment approach to covering up your acne?

DOES MAKEUP WORSEN ACNE?

Many makeup artists will tell you that makeup should be used to enhance your best traits, not hide your perceived flaws. That’s easy to say when you have a clear, radiant facial canvas. But for those of us who haven’t found the best acne treatment, makeup may seem like the only cure.

Unfortunately, makeup can cause acne and may make blackheads, whiteheads, pimples and inflammation worse. Like other non-cleansing products applied to the skin, makeup can clog skin pores. Oil prone areas such as the forehead, nose or chin are particularly susceptible, especially when excess concealers or powders are used to cover them.

CAN I STILL WEAR MAKEUP IF I HAVE ACNE?

The simple answer? It depends on the effect that makeup has on your skin and acne. If the effects of makeup are not extensive and you’re unwilling to give up on facial products, at least be picky about what you purchase. The best acne treatment approach is to select makeup labeled “noncomedogenic.” Noncomedogenic products are less likely to clog the pores, which can reduce oil and bacteria buildup that leads to acne, inflammation, and scars.

You should also be on the lookout for ingredients that may make your acne worse. Products that contain fragrances may irritate your skin or cause an allergic reaction. It is best to search for makeup marked “hypoallergenic” and “fragrance free.” If you’re uncertain about the effects that individual ingredients may have on your skin type, you can also consult your dermatologist for additional suggestions about using makeup that won’t interfere with your acne treatment.

WHAT ARE THE BEST ACNE TREATMENT PRODUCTS?

The best way to cover up pimples is to find the best acne treatment and prevention products for your skin. If you notice a clear connection between makeup and skin acne, you may have to avoid makeup products and opt for individual acne treatments or acne treatment kits instead. The best acne treatment solutions clear your skin by using benzoyl peroxide to kill bacteria living deep inside the pores and salicylic acid to unclog and exfoliate the follicle walls. Because some acne treatment products dry out the skin as they clear pimples and prevent scars, these acne treatment kits will often include a gentle moisturizer to soothe and hydrate skin cells. Such acne treatment solutions may contain aloe and chamomile extracts. Look for these ingredients as you search for the best acne treatment therapy, but also pay attention to the products that work best for your skin.

Cosmetic induced acne The answer is yes. 45% of women in a recent Brazilian study had dermatoses (skin disease) associated with the cosmetics they were using. 14% had active acne lesions due to cosmetics.1 Cosmetic induced acne is so widespread that it has its own name, acne cosmetica. People typically experience cosmetic induced acne on the chin and cheeks more than than on the forehead.3 It presents as small, whitish bumps, sometimes referred to as “grains”, which are more noticeable when the skin is stretched. It can also show up as red, garden variety pimples. Cosmetic induced acne tends to be stubborn, sometimes lasting for years as the person using makeup enters into a vicious cycle of covering the breakouts, which lead to further breakouts. Cosmetic induced acne can take months to form which can lead to confusion as a breakout seems to come out of nowhere, when in fact, cosmetics slowly caused the acne to form over time.4Applying makeup too roughly can lead to irritation which can also aggravate acne.

 

So what do I do about it?

Go bare when you can. When applying makeup, use it as sparingly as you can. Choose sheer, water-based, non-comedogenic (won’t clog pores) products. And finally, apply these products using a featherlight touch and only for a few seconds to minimize irritation.

There is no concensus on any “safe” makeup products. Almay® brand may be a safer choice since the company has a track record of dedication to fragrance-free, non-comedogenic (non pore-clogging) formulas. Regardless of brand, try to choose sheer or light coverage varieties which specifically claim to be non-comedogenic and are fragrance-free. Large, drugstore brands which are made for a younger, more acne-prone audience tend to be a safer choice than department store varieties, and less expensive to boot. “Acne fighting” makeup, while not necessarily a poor choice, is largely a marketing idea and does not provide for real acne fighting. “Acne fighting” makeups tend to have .5% salicylic acid as an active ingredient. Even 2% salicylic acid (the legal limit over-the-counter) does little for acne. Mineral makeup is fine as long as it does not cause itchiness, which is a sign of irritation and can lead to scratching (further irritation).

Recommended steps Avoid
Primer: Gently tap on a primer with your bare hands and a featherlight touch. “Massaging“ the primer in. This can cause unnecessary irritation.

Fragrance.

Foundation: Apply a sheer or light coverage foundation with your bare hands using a featherlight touch. If applying a powder or mineral foundation gently brush it on your skin for only a few seconds. Full or heavy coverage foundations, “all day” or long wearing foundations, thick cream type foundations.

Sponges or other applicators. These can be irritating.

Fragrance.

Pressed Powder: Apply pressed powder as gently and quickly as possible using a clean dry powder puff. Applying for longer than a few seconds.

Fragrance.

Concealer: If you still need to conceal some spots, apply a concealer with your bare hands using a featherlight touch. Heavy, greasy concealers.
Blush: Gently brush on powder blush for only a few seconds using a featherlight touch. Applying for longer than a few seconds.

Liquid blush – these can be greasy.

Fragrance.

Bronzer: Gently brush on bronzer quickly and gently. Many people implicate bizmuth oxychloride as an itch promoter and skin irritant. It may be best to avoid this ingredient.

Any bronzer which causes your skin to itch. Scratching at the skin is very irritating.

Tinted Moisturizer: Apply tinted moisturizer with your bare hands using a featherlight touch.

Note: You may add 5-6 drops of jojoba oil into the tinted moisturizer before applying.

Applying multiple moisturizers on top of one another. If you are using a tinted moisturizer, use only it as your only moisturizer.

Fragrance.

 

removing makeup

Recommended steps Avoid
Eye makeup: Dispense mineral oil (baby oil) or jojoba oil on a cotton pad or cotton ball. Use pad or ball to remove makeup. To avoid irritation, do not scrub other areas of the face with the cotton ball or pad.
Foundation, powder, concealer, and blush: Wash off using facial cleanser very gently for 10 seconds or less using your bare hands, just as you would if you were on The Regimen without makeup. See Step 1 above.

Note: If your makeup does not come off easily by washing this way, switch brands to a lighter, more sheer variety. If on occasion you need something stronger, try using moisturizer and your bare hands to gently remove makeup.

Towelettes, wipes, washcloths, scrubbers, and anything other than bare hands.

The table below lists ingredients which score a 3 or above on the 0-5 comedogenicity scale. If any of these are within the first seven ingredients on the ingredient list of a makeup product you are choosing, you may want to reconsider. If, however, any of these ingredients are far down on the list, this means the manufacturer may have included it in a very small amount and the product may still be safe to use.

  • 5Isopropyl isostearate
  • 5Isopropyl myristate
  • 5Myristyl myristate
  • 5Laureth-4
  • 5Oleth-3
  • 4Coconut butter
  • 4Acetylated lanolin
  • 4Acetylated lanolin alcohol
  • 4Lauric acid
  • 4Isopropyl palmitate
  • 4Isostearyl isostearate
  • 4Myristyl lactate
  • 4Stearyl heptanoate
  • 4Cetearyl alcohol + ceteareth 20
  • 4Cocoa butter
  • 3Mink oil
  • 3Soybean oil
  • 3Shark liver oil
  • 3D&C red #30
  • 3Stearic acid: TEA
  • 3Myristic acid
  • 3Buytl stearate
  • 3Decyl oleate
  • 3Isostearyl neopentanoate
  • 3Glyceryl stearate SE
  • 3Wheat germ glyceride
  • 3Laureth-23

How To Hide or Minimize Large Pores

Large facial pores can really pull the spotlight away from your natural beauty. Compounding the problem, these pores are often located right in the middle of the face around the nose, cheeks and chin areas. While pores start out as barely visible, they enlarge over time due to age, skin damage, genetics and excess oil production. There may be nothing you can do to change the size of your pores, but there is plenty you can do to disguise their appearances.

Step 1

Wash your face twice per day with a facial exfoliant that contains salicylic acid. This acid helps dissolve oil and dirt stuck in the pores, thus allowing them to shrink back to their normal size. Massage the exfoliant into the skin using your fingers for at least 30 to 60 seconds before rinsing clean with water.

Step 2

Apply a small amount of oil-free moisturizer onto your face using your fingers, making sure to rub it in thoroughly. Focus on the areas of skin that contain large pores. Don’t apply too much moisturizer.

Step 3

Apply a pea-sized amount of a silicone-based primer to your skin by gently rubbing it evenly over your face. Concentrate on areas with enlarged pores. The primer will fill them in and smooth out your skin’s appearance.

Step 4

Use a makeup brush to pick up some powder-based foundation that matches your skin tone, then pat it onto your face. Gently patting the foundation on prevents the primer from rubbing off, which can occur with liquid foundations.

Step 5

Blot your face with oil-absorbing sheets throughout the day to remove excess oil. If desired, you may instead apply a liquid oil-absorbing product under your makeup; this product is designed to absorb oil all day. Blotting papers and liquid oil absorbers are available at drugstores and makeup counters.

10 Toxic Beauty Ingredients to Avoid

If you thought the FDA does a subpar job in regulating what goes into our food supply, you’ll be equally appalled, if not more, on its regulation of cosmetic and personal-care products. The same way you look at food labels, you should do the same for your beauty products.

There are thousands of chemicals in your products, many of which are being absorbed into your body. These companies have cart blanche to use any ingredient or raw material without government review or approval.

This industry is highly unregulated. There is no pre-product approval before a product hits the market and enters your home. A minuscule approval process exists, but only for color additives and ingredients classified as over-the-counter drugs.

Many of these synthetic chemicals are skin irritants, skin penetrators, endocrine disrupters and are carcinogenic. I can’t go through all of these harmful chemicals, but here are 10 you should highly avoid.

Parabens. Parabens are widely used preservatives that prevent the growth of bacteria, mold and yeast in cosmetic products. Sounds good, right? Not so fast, they do more than that. Parabens possess estrogen-mimicking properties that areassociated with increased risk of breast cancer. These chemicals are absorbed through the skin and have been identified in biopsy samples from breast tumors. They can be found in makeup, body washes, deodorants, shampoos and facial cleansers. You can also find them in food and pharmaceutical products.

Synthetic colors. If you take a look at your product label and notice FD&C or D&C, they represent artificial colors. F — representing food and D&C representing drug and cosmetics. These letters precede a color and number (e.g., D&C Red 27 or FD&C blue 1). These synthetic colors are derived from petroleum or coal tar sources. Synthetic colors are suspected to be a human carcinogen, a skin irritant and are linked to ADHD in children. The European Classification and Labeling considers it a human carcinogen and the European Union has banned it.

Fragrance. This particular category is pretty scary, because what does “fragrance” mean anyway? This term was created to protect a company’s “secret formula.” But as the consumer you could be putting on a concoction that contains tons of chemicals that are hazardous to your health. According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG) Skin Deep Database, fragrance mixes have been associated with allergies, dermatitis, respiratory distress and potential effects on the reproductive system. It can be found in many products such as perfume, cologne, conditioner, shampoo, body wash and moisturizers.

Phthalates. A group of chemicals used in hundreds of products to increase the flexibility and softness of plastics. The main phthalates in cosmetics and personal care products are dibutyl phthalate in nail polish, diethyl phthalate in perfumes and lotions, and dimethyl phthalate in hair spray. They are known to be endocrine disruptors and have been linked to increased risk of breast cancer, early breast development in girls, and reproductive birth defects in males and females. Unfortunately, it is not disclosed on every product as it’s added to fragrances (remember the “secret formula” not listed), a major loophole in the law. They can be found in deodorants, perfumes/colognes, hair sprays and moisturizers.

Triclosan. Tricolson is widely used antimicrobial chemical that’s a known endocrine disruptor — especially thyroid and reproductive hormones, and a skin irritant. Studiesraise concerns that triclosan contributes to making bacteria antibiotic-resistant. There also wasn’t enough supporting evidence that washing with antibacterial soaps containing triclosan provides any benefit over washing with regular soap and water. Tricolson can be found in toothpastes, antibacterial soaps and deodorants.

Sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) / Sodium laureth sulfate (SLES). This surfactant can be found in more than 90 percent of personal care and cleaning products (think foaming products). SLS’s are known to be skin, lung, and eye irritants. A major concern about SLS is its potential to interact and combine with other chemicals to form nitrosamines, a carcinogen. These combinations can lead to a host of other issues like kidney and respiratory damage. They can be found in shampoo, body wash/cleanser, mascara and acne treatment.

Formaldehyde. Formaldehyde and formaldehyde-releasing preservatives (FRP’s) preservatives are used in many cosmetic products to help prevent bacteria growth. This chemical was deemed as a human carcinogen by The International Agency for Research on Carcinogens (IARC) and has been linked to occupational related cancers: nasal and nasopharyngeal. It is known to cause allergic skin reactions and it may also be harmful to the immune system. It can be found in nail polish, body washes, conditioners, shampoos, cleansers, eye shadows, nail polish treatments.

Toluene. A petrochemical derived from petroleum or coal tar sources. You may see it on labels listed as benzene, toluol, phenylmethane, methylbenzene. Toluene is a potent solvent able to dissolve paint and paint thinner. It can affect your respiratory system, cause nausea and irritate your skin. Expecting mothers should avoid exposure to toluene vapors as it may cause developmental damage in the fetus. Toluene has also been linked to immune system toxicity. It can be found in nail polish, nail treatments and hair color/bleaching products.

Propylene glycol. Propylene glycol is a small organic alcohol commonly used as a skin-conditioning agent. It’s classified as a skin irritant and penetrator. It has been associated with causing dermatitis as well as hives in humans — these sensitization effects can be manifested at propylene glycol concentrations as low as 2 percent. It can be found in moisturizers, sunscreen, makeup products, conditioners, shampoo and hair sprays.

Sunscreen chemicals. These chemicals function as a sunscreen agent, to absorb ultraviolet light. These chemicals are endocrine disruptors and are believed to be easily absorbed into the body. They may also cause cellular damage and cancer in the body. Common names are benzophenone, PABA, avobenzone, homosalate and ethoxycinnmate. They can be found in sunscreen products.

It’s impossible to avoid every single synthetic chemical, but you can do your part in limiting the amount of toxins your body is exposed to. Be sure to: eat clean, avoid chemical-laden processed foods, drink plenty of filtered water and look for products that are certified organic if you want to avoid these toxic chemicals.

Educate yourself and do your research before you buy. Think of something you absolutely love, and the time and energy you apply to it. Use the same, when it comes to your health. You have one life to live and one body. If you don’t take care of yourself, you may pay for it later in sickness.

Be sure to check out the EWG’s Skin Deep Database to research toxic chemicals that could be in your cosmetic and personal care products.

I would love to hear from you. Do you check your beauty product labels? Will you commit to limiting your exposure to these toxic chemicals?

Vanessa Cunningham is a New York-based nutrition & lifestyle coach and dynamic speaker. She helps busy working professionals reduce stress, banish unhealthy cravings, lose weight and increase their energy levels. Trained in over 100 dietary theories, Vanessa creates customized plans for all her clients that are fun, sustainable and empower them to meet their goals.  Vanessa Cunningham!

Best Beauty Blogs in 2015

Blackheads are just pimples that don’t have skin over them. That’s all they are. Because there’s no skin, and they’re exposed to the air, the top layer of gunk in your pores oxidizes and turns that darkish black color.
All you have to do is clean out your pores, and the blackheads are gone. There’s no need to squish and squeeze.
If you’re prone to blackheads, I have some good and bad news for you. The bad news is, large pores and oily skin are going to be a fact of life for you. The likelihood that you’ll be able to totally reverse either of those things is nil.
The good news is, people with oily skin and large pores don’t wrinkle as quickly (because our skin is VERY good at replenishing the oils). So when you’re 60, this will be a blessing.

1. Make Exfoliation and Microdermabrasion a Part of Your Weekly Ritual

There are so many things you can use to exfoliate and remove blackheads with. All of them are in your cabinets right now.
Especially for oily skin and getting rid of blackheads. Nutmeg helps get rid of the oil, offers the scrubby power, and leaves behind really smooth skin. The lactic acid in milk helps break down old skin cells so they disappear when you rinse your face. If you really want to take it up a notch, use buttermilk instead of regular milk (it contains even more lactic acid).
You could also use: Baking soda and water, lemon juice and sugar, or salt and sour cream.
How you do it: Simply combine your “scrubby” ingredient with your liquid/wet ingredient until you have a thin paste. Starting with a clean face, rinse it once with water, and then begin to apply your exfoliator in light, circular motions.
Concentrate on the blackheads, but remember to use a very light touch. Too rough, and you could damage your skin.
Do this for 3-5 minutes. Rinse well. Enjoy your clean face.

2. Do a Honey Pat-Down

This is only slightly different than the honey face wash, in that you don’t want to wet your face before you start – in any way, shape, or form. (Although you do want to have a clean face before beginning.)
Your honey should be very, very sticky if you want this to be as effective as possible.
Simply pour a small amount of honey on your fingers and start rapidly patting the areas on your face where you want to remove blackheads. The honey will stick to the stuff in your pores, and pull it out as you remove your fingers. It will also offer gentle antibacterial and antioxidant support, so any small remnants that may be left in your pores won’t oxidize (and turn black) quite as quickly.
Continue doing this for 3 or so minutes, and then just rinse your face with water.

3. Use Egg Whites to Pull Out the Gunk

Frankly, this is one of my least favorite ways to get rid of blackheads (I don’t particularly like the way eggs on my face smell, and it hasn’t been as effective as the other ways for me).
However, hundreds of other people swear by this method, thus I include it for your consideration. It’s a prime example of how one crunchy remedy may work for one person, and not at all for another. You never, ever, ever know until you try.
How to pull out the blackheads with an egg white mask: Starting with a clean face, spread egg whites all over using your fingers or a paintbrush. Start first with one thin layer and let it dry briefly. Then spread a second layer over the top and let the whole thing dry completely.
You may want to focus on the blackhead areas a third time, even.
Allow this mask to dry for 15 minutes. Your face will feel tight and pull a bit. This is good. Then, with a warm, wet washcloth, scrub the egg whites off your face very gently.
If nothing else, your face WILL be super smooth and soft. (And probably a little more porcelain (edit: or uniform regardless of skin tone) in color for a while, too, which is a fun bonus.)

4. Use a Cosmetic Clay Mask to Soak Up the Oils

If egg whites were my least favorite, clays are my absolute #1 favorite way to get rid of blackheads.
You do not have to have a special $50 jar of facial mask clay for this. You do not have to put essential oil into your mask (if you don’t want to, but you can).
All you need is cosmetic clay and water (or apple cider vinegar, which is how I like to do it).
Where do you get cosmetic clay? Mountain Rose Herbs carries a variety of it at very reasonable prices (bentonite, french green, rhassoul, and fuller’s earth). But if you have a local herb shop, the chances are, they’ll have some there, too.
How to make a blackhead-busting mask with clay: Again, you can add goodies like rosewater or a drop or two of essential oils to your clay, but this is not necessary for removing blackheads.
So the basics are: Combine 1 Tbsp clay with 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar (or pure water) and stir until you have a paste without lumps in it. Spread over your whole clean face, or just the areas where you have blackheads. Allow this to dry for 15-20 minutes.
Take a warm, wet washcloth and press it to the mask for a few seconds, and then slowly and gently wipe off.

5. If All Else Fails, Take a Clean Toothbrush to the Area

Do not use this method unless all else fails.
This is absolutely the most extreme measure you should go to in clearing your blackheads (with squishing and squeezing being THE most extreme measure there is).
Use a dedicated toothbrush only for blackhead cleaning. Do NOT use your mouth toothbrush (ew) ever. In between scrubbing blackheads, dunk your toothbrush in a glass of hydrogen peroxide to keep it clean.
How to do this: Using a soft bristled brush (NOTHING FIRMER), pour a small amount of lemon juice on the toothbrush, along with a drop or two of oily-skin friendly oil like jojoba, tamanu, or neem.
VERY gently scrub your blackhead areas with the head of your toothbrush. You can rinse with water and reapply with lemon and oil if you feel like you need to. Just do this gently. In circular motions. And don’t go crazy.
Also, don’t do this more than once a week. Don’t do it around your eyes. And do NOT do this on any open sores, scratches, or cuts. Ever. Promise?
If you avoid anywhere delicate, it should be just fine. I just wanted to be overly dramatic, so you understand that you shouldn’t brush your whole face with lemon juice and a toothbrush.

An Ounce of Prevention…

… pound of cure and all that.
Here are a few ways you can prevent blackheads before they happen. Maybe not always and forever, but most of the time.
(I have noticed approximately 3 blackheads on my nose in the last three months, down from seeing them almost every day two years ago, if that makes you feel better.)
Ways to prevent blackheads:
  • Don’t wash your face with harsh cleansers. This makes your skin overreact and produce more oil, which means your blackheads will be back much faster.
  • DO wash your face twice a day with natural sources. (Say, the no-nonsense daily scrub in the morning and the honey wash with baking soda in the evening.)
  • Wear makeup as little as possible.
  • Wash your pillowcase on a weekly basis (to clean off any dead skin cells and oils your face leaves behind on it).
  • Use an astringent like witch hazel or apple cider vinegar after you wash your face and before you moisturize (this will help get rid of any residual gunkiness and tighten the pores a bit).
  • Once every two weeks, use a facial steam to help open your pores and let them unclog.
  • Consider using the oil cleansing method to wash your face (pop over and read this thread in the Crunchy Community to see why).
  • Make a homemade peel-off mask with gelatin and tomato juice.
  • Blot your face with tissue paper throughout the day to soak up oil before it can accumulate.