Honey Cleanser

worker-b-raw-honey-face-wash

I recently had the opportunity to try a raw honey facial cleanser by Worker B.  I have been wanting to try a cleansing mud for a while but many of them are very expensive.  This one however meets my ingredient requirements and doesn’t break the bank.  I have cleansed with raw honey before , but this was an entirely different experience.

This cleanser has a very delightful understated aroma.  The consistency is not like using pure raw honey. This is because of the unique formula including skincare oils.  This honey wash seems to melt onto your skin.  It is an effective cleanser and has been quite good at treating my hormonal outbreaks.

It has the best of both worlds of honey cleansing and oil cleansing.  It removes more easily than oil cleansing.  My previous experience with honey cleansing was a mixed mag. Just using raw honey was difficult because of the sticky consistency.   I also would experience a breakout after consistent use for a couple of weeks.

I have not used this product consistently so please take note.  I use it for about a week a month during which I would normally breakout from my monthly cycle.  I highly recommend the “normal to dry” formula due to it containing non comedogenic oils that are perfect for acneic skin.

Ingredients: Raw Honey, Organic oils of Rosehip Seed, Kukui Nut and Sesame Seed, Worker B Propolizer Tincture and Organic Elderberry Extract

Available at: http://www.worker-b.com/shop/skincare/raw-honey-face-wash-normal-dry-skin/

Foreo Luna Mini

foreo luna mini

     I began researching this product as soon as I discovered its existence last fall. By the time November came around I was convinced I wanted it and began dropping hints to my husband for a Christmas gift.  Of course I was very surprised that I actually received it because it can be hard for a man justifying spending so much on a skincare tool, especially after all of the money I wasted on the Clarisonic.

     I was elated when I opened it but a little nervous that it would turn out to be another waste. Fortunately, he got it on sale on Black Friday and that helped to alleviate some of my apprehension.  So I have been using it consistently for 4 months. I love so many aspects of it, I need to just list them out for you:

1)  There are no upkeep fees, like purchasing replacement brush heads with the Clarasonic. It is 1 and done!

2)  I charged it Christmas Day from a laptop with a USB cable and haven’t charged it since even though I use it twice a day!

3) It is waterproof so I keep it and use it in the shower.

4) It is silicone, so it is super easy to clean.

5) It works!  My skin has significantly improved since using it.  And it is very comfortable to use.

6) Last but not least, it is simply a stunning device. From the colors to the simple packaging, it is just a well thought out product.

     So there you have it! Let me know if you are interested in trying it, or already have one and what your experience has been. I would love to hear from you!

Skin Care Oils

    Russell-Organics-Kukui-Nut-Oil-893900001617

     So far I have been oil cleansing on and off for about 2 years now. I have tried other methods in between but nothing seems to work as well for me long term. Sometimes I still mix it up by skipping it a couple days and a scrub, or mask instead. The most important part of oil cleansing is probably choosing the right oil for you. I already did a post about the benefits of oil cleansing but this post should help you to choose an oil should you decide to join the pack.

     The first step is to consider your skin type. If you are acneic like I am, you will want to choose one that is non-comedogenic. People do this by looking up oils with a low comedogenic rating.  I however have found that some of these assigned ratings are just not accurate.  Instead, becoming a  little  bio-chemically savvy is probably your best way to go.  Yes it takes a little effort, but in the end you will have more knowledge to make better decisions for your skincare needs.  Please refer to my post on fatty acids if you need a bit of a bio-chem refresher.  By looking at the breakdown of different oils, you will be able to take many different factors, and find an oil that meets all of your requirements.

     For example, if you look up the fatty acid profile of a specific oil, you can see what fatty acids and their percentages make up the oil. You will want to look for ones that have shorter chains, and unsaturated fats.  The longer chain oils can get stuck in the pores, and the saturated varieties are rigid and can also get stuck. Coconut oil is made up of primarily these types of fatty acids in the form of Palmitic and Stearic Acids.  That is why I would never recommend coconut oil to someone with acne problems.  Regardless, I wouldn’t recommend anyone without acne problems to even chance it with oils high in these acids.

     Another way to look at it even further is to look at the balance between Oleic and Linoleic fatty acids. If you have acneic skin, it tends to be lacking in Linoleic acids and excessive in Oleic acids. You can help balance this out by choosing oils that have higher levels of Linoleic than Oleic fatty acids. If you do not have acne problems, you can use a balanced oil, meaning the ratio of oleic to linoleic is relatively equal.

     Another factor to consider is the pH of the oil. Choosing an oil with a pH that is relatively close to what is ideal for your skin will help to not disturb the acid mantle balance.  Most people know that the ideal for skin is a pH of 5.5.  However, research has demonstrated that its natural state is actually below 5, around 4.7 to be exact.  Researchers have found that this is actually a healthier level for the skin, and it helps to preserve beneficial bacteria on the skin. Choosing an oil with a pH near to 4.7 will be another way to narrow down your oil options.

     Another way to investigate an oil is to look at it’s phytochemical properties.  Does it have exceptionally high levels of Vitamin E or A?  These components can be pore clogging and irritating to those with sensitive or acneic skin. Is your skin neither of those too and is instead aging? Perhaps an oil high in these components would be a good option for your to nourish your skin and promote rapid cell turnover.

     There are a few other factors that can go into choosing your oil. First, you want it to be preferably organic, cold-pressed, non-deodorized, and packaged in a glass amber bottle to preserve the integrity of the oil. An oil that meets these requirements will not have to have preservatives added to it, unless it is a delicate oil and has a short shelf life naturally.  Choosing an oil with a longer shelf life is preferable as then it will need a preservative and should be kept in the refrigerator.

     So what is the holy grail of skincare oils?   For me it is Kukui Nut Oil. I have tried it from both Beauty Oils and Russel Organics. Sometimes you have to sacrifice a few things to get an oil you really want. For example, Beauty Oils has cold-pressed, 100% pure Kukui Nut oil, non-deodorized, but it is not organic and is in a plastic amber bottle. Russel Organics sells what is presumably organic pure 100% pure Kukui Nut oil in a glass amber bottle for 2x’s the price.

     So, let me know what skincare oils work for you. One that I have wanted to try for a body oil is Jojoba. Supposedly it’s unique fatty acids mimic sebum and are easily absorbed and non-pore clogging. Perhaps as I try new oils, I will write another post reviewing different oils. Until then, please let me know about what oils you use, or are interested in.  A great resource to use when researching oils is Mountain Rose Herbs, as they provide the pH, and fatty acid profiles for many oils.

Oil Cleansing

 oil cleansing

     I first heard about the Oil Cleansing Method in the past year.  My first reaction was a rather perplexed expression. Why would anyone slather their face in oil?  Maybe it was good for someone with aging, dry skin but certainly not someone with oil and acne problems to begin with.  I couldn’t believe that it was a thing so I started researching it to find out if there was any logic behind it.  Then I started seeing all of the mixed reviews, some people have excellent experiences with it and others have had horrible experiences.

     I found that the results seem to depend on many different factors including type of oil.  Many found that many of the people with the bad experiences mixed oils or relied on oil cleansing alone to clean their face.  I decided to go a different route in my personal experiment.  I picked an oil that has a very low comodegenic oil.  I chose Argan oil which has a 0-1 comodegenic rating which means it is very unlikely to clog pores.  It also has many antibacterial and healing properties which make it ideal especially for people with acneic or skin with residual scarring.  I have also personally found that it is excellent for removing eye makeup and moisturizing the delicate eye skin.

     Since starting this regimen I have had some pleasantly surprising results.  Before oil cleansing what was happening was I had many many clogged pores.  I was not allowing my skins acid mantle enough time to rebuild in between cleanings and for its pH to re-balance (skin pH should be around 5.5).  I also was stripping away all of its natural oils that are meant to moisturize the skin and prevent bacterial infections.   Since switching my skin is significantly less oily and I have noticeable less clogged pores.

     My routine consists of as follows: At night I gently steam my face and then apply the Argan Oil and massage it in for a few minutes.  I then remove the oil with a hot washcloth and pat dry, and then moisturize with a little bit of Argan Oil.  In the morning I shower so I don’t steam again and in the shower I massage in the Argan Oil and use a washcloth to remove.  I then pat dry with a towel and reapply a little Argan oil for moisturizer.  It surprisingly dries matte, and leaves my skin soft and smooth, the perfect canvas for my mineral foundation.

     The Argan oil I use is from a trusted brand called Aura Cacia  and I ordered it for $8 on Vitacost.  When looking for a brand of Argan oil to use, look for one in a dark glass bottle.  This keeps it fresh and from being oxidized by light.  Look for one that is NOT deodorized, these have less efficacy.  Naturally they should have  a slightly sweet nutty flavor.  It should also feel smooth and silky and be 100% pure with not fillers.  Have any of you tried Oil Cleansing or discovered any other uses for Argan oil?

Herbal Steam Cleansing

Facial massage in spa.

One of the most important factors in helping myself maintain clear skin is deep pore cleansing.  If you have oily/blemished skin here is a guide for you.  Before you start cleansing, start a pot of water on the stove but do not set it to boil.  You want it just hot enough so that it steams but does not boil.  You do not want to burn your skin or eyes when steaming and also even if you can handle it hotter remember that the evaporated water is entering your pores and it can cause damage and inflammation from within if it is too hot.  I add some tea bags in as well.  Fresh herbs are best but where I live they can be difficult to find.  Essential oils work well too.

     Now start cleansing.  I use my Clarisonic and I really recommend it for people who have troubled skin or just find it difficult to achieve that deep clean feeling.  After you have finished cleansing, pour the steaming water into a heat safe bowl and use a towel to “tent” your head capturing the steam.  The herbs I like to use include ones such as Chamomile, Calendula, Comfrey and Myrtle; all of which are very cleansing, antiseptic and healing.  Do this for about 10-15 minutes and keep your face at least 6 inches from the bowl.

     After that rinse the skin with cool water.  This is to to make sure that any toxins that were pushed out do not remain on the skin and it also closes your pores after you steamed them open.  After that gently pat dry and apply your favorite moisturizer.  DO MOISTURIZE.  The heat even though it is moist can be very drying.  Then after that take a washcloth and slightly wet it with very cold water and place it on your face to cool it down and close the pores.  Do this 1-2 times a week, or a shorter version ever night for just a few minutes as part of your cleansing regimen.