Saturday, July 25, 2015

My Daily Skin Routine (Oily To Combination)


Hello again!


This subject is a touchy one since all have different skin types. I’ve always had combination skin; oily t-zone but dry everywhere else on my face. 


I’ve always been a GM Collin face product fanatic but mid year 2014 my hormones decided to get the worst of me….especially my forehead! The oiliness on my forehead was horrendous and I developed what seems to be minor acne! They’re not big in any way but definitely visible to me and especially under the light reflection. It’s one of those things where since you see it, you can imagine what everyone else sees! But from having the odd blemish to having forehead acne...it was disappointing and discouraging! Nothing I was doing seemed to work, I guess because I was looking for a quick fix! 




Fast forward 6 months....I’ve come to realize that it’s a slow healing process. On that note, I was recommended by my friend, an esthetician, to do weekly clay masks on my forehead to reduce the oiliness. That worked really well with the GM Collin Oxygen PURACTIV+ Mask. It’s a mask that purifies, revitalizes, mattifies, refreshes, and also hydrates the skin. I also notice that it visually tightens my pores. I use this mask about once a week.






I will then use a mask to exfoliate my whole face that’s also from GM Collin called Intensive Exfoliating Gel. It’s a dual action gel that exfoliates and tones the skin. This gel I apply all over my face, let it dry then rinse off. It really helps to brighten, hydrate and leaves my skin feeling smooth & radiant.




For intensive, overnight treatment to the oily/acne part on my forehead, I alternate 2 products that are only under prescription (in Canada) that I can vouch really helps keeping my skin clear and the acne to a very minimal state. I won’t apply them at the same time but will alternate depending on how severe the acne can start to appear- I try to keep the acne to a bare minimal and it works! 


First product is the Benzaclin Gel (in a pump format). BenzaClin Gel contains a combination of benzoyl peroxide and clindamycin. Benzoyl peroxide has an antibacterial effect. It also has a mild drying effect that allows excess oil and dirt to be washed away. Clindamycin is an antibiotic that prevents bacteria from growing on the skin. Since it dries up the skin (from the benzoyl peroxide), I make sure I hydrate first before applying the gel. 






The second product is Stieva-A cream. It works partly by keeping skin pores clear. It’s also used to treat fine wrinkles, dark spots, or rough skin on the face caused by damaging rays of the sun. It works by causing the skin's outer layer to grow more quickly and be replaced with new skin cells, which helps to reduce the formation of blackheads, whiteheads, and other acne lesions. Results aren't usually seen for 8 – 10 weeks but using it after a handful of times, I’ve seen the difference before the 8 weeks….I guess alternating with the Benzaclin Gel speeds up the results. Since both products are used to treat acne, it’s extemely important to protect the skin with a good SPF product as well. These products make the skin even more sensitive to sun. In both cases, they need to be prescribed for a reason but I can honestly say they have a made a tremendous difference to my face. 




On the other hand, a product I’ve tried and cannot recommend to this treatment is Benzagel. It’s basically just benzoyl peroxide and works for a very short period of time (after a long period of use) but just has the drying effect and doesn’t really treat the problem as a whole. Again, consult your doctor for further information.






Moving onto the rest of the face….tonic, the most important step of facial hydration! Our skin is like a sponge, the pores open up by using a tonic first to allow better absorption of the other vital hydrating products. The one I’ve been using recently is the Boscia Clear Complexion Tonic. It’s a non-irritating tonic that soothes and gently clarifies, purifies, and refines pores to help maintain a clear complexion.
For face cream, it varies but I like to change it up depending on the season. Lately, I’ve been into the Boscia Clear Complexion Moisturizer. I like that it’s a lightweight moisturizer but provides good hydration, I'm reaching the end of this tube and open to trying something else...Moving onto eye cream, which is by far the driest part of my face. I’m currently using the GM Collin Phyto Stem Cell+ Eye Contour Cream. It’s an advanced anti-aging eye contour cream that really hydrates, soothes and has visibly improved the firmness, puffiness, minor dark circles, wrinkles and fine lines of my skin. I also tried the GM Collin Bota-Peptide Eye Contour Cream which is great as well but I thought I’d change it up a bit. Both are great and definitely recommended!
Everything I’ve mentioned above, I apply morning (before my make up routine) and at night (after my face wash) EXCEPT the medicated treatments I only apply at night only when I see the acne acting up because more than once a day or even everyday can be very drying. 
Now, for make up remover- it's very hard to use the same product for the face and eyes, at least for me it is! I have very sensitive eyes (from previously wearing contact lenses to now eye laser correction). I usually use the Vichy Pureté Thermale- Waterproof Eye Makeup Remover For Sensitive Eyes. I only wear waterproof mascara because my lower lashes always smudge, so this product is amazing but a tad pricey if not on sale at the pharmacy. So when it’s not on sale I use Marcelle Gentle Make-Up Remover for Sensitive Eyes. It’s a great dupe to the Vichy and HALF the price- now that's a bonus!

For the whole face, I currently use Bioderma Sébium H2O. It’s a cleansing and makeup removing water that gently purifies combination or oily skin. From my experience, I don’t recommend it to remove the eye makeup (it stings my sensitive eyes) but for my face, it removes EVERYTHING and feels refreshing and not an oily feeling. I also will warm up a washcloth and wring it out and go over my face and neck just to make sure everything is really all off. Plus it feels refreshing and a good prep to applying my daily facial routine.


Oh, I did want to mention that I use Formedica non woven compresses to remove all makeup for my eyes and face. It’s an amazing product that cleans everything nicely and non irritating- with no lint or other stringy pieces that cotton pads or cotton balls tend to do. For the amount in a box, the price is pretty amazing. I get them at the pharmacy and they come in a variety of sizes. They are also very versatile for other uses too!
Last but not least, the key item to finish off facial moisturiing routine is the EOS lip balm. All their lip balms are 95% organic, 100% natural, paraben and petrolatum free. Great thing to have on your lips for that all night treatment and the pre-lipstick morning application.So there we have it! A full skincare routine for the oily to combination skin. This routine has been a long process but feels great to finally have control over my skin and it's issues. Now that Summer is coming (hopefully soon), I may need to alter a few steps but I'm crossing my fingers I don't have to!I hope this helps some of you overcome the problems you may be experiencing....and if you are...be patient! It will happen, I can guarantee you that!Thanks again for reading! Stay tuned for the next blog! ~xo~Flo



**Please note that my posts contain my genuine recommendations and opinions; not sponsored **

Saturday, January 24, 2015

2014 Beauty Favorites

Hello my fellow makeup gurus!

Since I'm new to your world, I thought it would be interesting to share with you my favorites for 2014! Keeping it simple and just the essentials!

Let's get right into it....in no specific order, of course!

If you're anything like me, concealers are not the easiest products to find since they are very personalized to detailed issues you need to cover. My under eye area is particularly dry with barely visible dark circles but with the help of a primer (Hourglass), I’ve really been digging the TARTE Maracuja Creaseless Concealer. It's a full-coverage concealer that doesn't crease or flake. It's long-lasting, creamy, velvety texture that's infused with tarte’s pure maracuja oil. It's brightening, it's dewy and I love the luminous finish. As usual, to get that finished look.....a little setting powder perfects this product! I'm in the shade Light.


One of my recent discoveries for foundation is the Diorskin Forever Compact Flawless Perfection Fusion Wear Makeup SPF 25. This baby is pricey but worth every penny! It's everything I expected and more! I've tried many foundations from liquid to compact. I have an oily t-zone (with minor acne) but dry skin as well. I've tried CoverFX Compact, MakeUp Forever Mat Velvet (Liquid) & HourGlass Mineral Veil (Liquid) but this Diorskin product is the best product as far as coverage, lightweight and long lasting! It's definitely not cakey , like other compacts can be. My flaws and lines become blurred, my skin feels so silky and a little sure goes a long way! I just love it - definite repurchase! I'm in the shade 20. I’m not really into packaging but Dior really paid attention to detail when it came to that...even with the navy blue velvet sleeve to protect this compact.

I have a hard time with eyeliners lasting all day on my eyes...no matter the primer! However, I've got to say the best one I've came across is the STILA Stay All Day® Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner. It's such an easy application, it's quick-drying and WATERPROOF! I swear the thin, marker-like tip makes it the easiest liner to use, like beginner beauty easy! But the fact that it can go on from a thin line to a bold, dramatic look makes it so versatile as a liner and the smoothness is like no other. I have no smudging or running for the entire day!! I use the shade Jet-Black shade


As for bronzer, very hard to find one that doesn't have sparkle or glitter or make me look like a brown-orange mess. I wanted subtle yet effective and dewy. I use it as a bronzer and contour with it as well. I have been loving the Soleil Tan de Chanel Bronzing Makeup Base.

This bronzer is amazing! It stays on all day, much stronger staying power than powdery bronzers due to it's creamy base. The colour gives a natural sun-kissed glow that suits all skin tones. When I contour with this product it never looks overdone, always looking natural. It blends perfectly on the skin, it's silky smooth, and goes from a gel/mousse-ish/cream to a matte dry finish. This is the perfect product for dry skin types as well- I never have build up or patchiness especially since my cheeks are the dryer part on my face. I've had this product for months and there isn't even a hint of it drying out because of the inner cap and tightly closing outer cap. And did I mention there are no sparkles?! PERFECT!

Pencil liner: Urban Decay URBAN DECAY 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil Perversion - matte blackest black. Since most eyeliners smudge on me this waterproof liner stays put! It slides on smooth and stays soft and creamy for blending (about 30 seconds), then dries to a long-lasting finish that seriously won't budge. A definite keeper!

This has been a newer discovery for me only because I was hooked on the Mac eye-shadow called Bark as my brow filler, which is now discontinued. So.....now that I've finished the eyeshadow, it was time to move on to the raving ANASTASIA BEVERLY HILLS DIPBROW Pomade. It's a smudge-free, waterproof pomade that's an all-in-one brow product. It's creamy, smooth & creates clean, defined brows. It's even great for oily skin! It actually is a pretty amazing! I get why it's a raving product....well deserved! I'm in the shade Soft Brown.

Moving onto blushes....so sad to see that I've hit pan with MAC Sheertone Blush in Pink Swoon and to top it off it's DISCONTINUED! It's that perfect natural pink flush that is suitable for any skin tone. It's pigmented enough, but not clown-like. The finish is satiny - not shimmery nor powdery but a very nice versatile/subtle blush.

So sad to know it can't be repurchased but I guess it's time to move on. On the hunt now for another blush or blushes….suggestions are welcomed!

On a more positive note, one cannot live without a highlighter - impossible! MAC Mineralize Skinfinish in shade Soft and Gentle. The picture doesn’t do justice to the actual shade...it’s a beautiful peachy, pinky shade with a delicate finish. I guess that’s why they call it soft and gentle-that’s exactly the finish!

The most important thing about makeup is the setting powder...without this makeup was applied for nothing! It's not without reason why MAKE UP FOR EVER HD Microfinish Powder was the three-time award-winning universal translucent finishing powder. It's a luxe finishing powder that sets the foundation and slightly mattifies skin without changing its natural contours. It completely evens out my complexion for a glowing, radiant look. Being translucent and talc-free, it doesn't dry my sensitive & combination skin. It’s a universal shade so it works for all skin tones. The lightweight, silky texture and ultra-fine formula gives me a flawless finish and I could never be without it..E-VER!

* A useful tip...to see if any setting powders need to be buffed out or where it may be blotchy, take a picture of your face with flash. That photo with flash will automatically show you where to buff out any blotchiness. Yes, the product is translucent, but flash will pick up on any imperfections. *

Last but not least...trying sooooo many a year, mascara has to be the most critiqued makeup product out there. It's honestly by preference and depends solely on each own eyelashes. To this day, from the moment they were on the shelves, the best mascara out there for me is the Maybelline Volum’ Express-The Falsies Waterproof Mascara in very black. My eyelashes really look thicker and longer, like I'm wearing false eyelashes! I’m not a fan of curved or spoon-shaped mascara brushes but this one makes mascara application easy and follows the shape of the eye and the fact that it's a flat-curved brush, makes all the difference. The outcome is luscious...luscious lashes. This mascara has earned itself the Holy Grail in my makeup routine!

So that's it for 2014....here's to more discoveries for 2015!

Thanks again for reading...stay tuned for the next post...all about the skin!

~xo~
Flo


**Please note that my posts contain my genuine recommendations and opinions & not sponsored **

Saturday, January 10, 2015

First post ever ~ Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!

A New Year to start new things!

2015 was committed to changing things up a bit...from all about beauty to all about beauty-blogging it. Being inspired by YouTube Make Up gurus, I’ve realized that not all gurus are the same; which is a good thing...that’s what makes us each different in our own way.

I am a Make Up Artist and beauty product junkie from Montreal, Canada. There’s something else you all should know about me...I also have a crafty side... like DIY crafty...random but I love it.

I discovered quite a few years ago that I love beauty & all things DIY. My dream has been to become a Make Up Artist apart from my full time career in something totally different.

I knew from the moment I was asked to help out in Make Up for a short film movie that I could see myself doing this...like, for real! It brought me to a different level of confidence that I actually COULD do it and not just dream or hope.

A few things to look forward to this year in helping me along the way of this blog will be to creating a craft/makeup room, I’ll keep you all posted on that. Also, my 10 year wedding anniversary will bring me to special places and get my hands on some interesting beauty products from Europe. If there are any products you recommend, let me know. This is the place where I will review it so feel free to leave comments too. It truly is so much fun and very rewarding knowing that I'm able to reach so many people and do what I love. Beauty advice, product reviews... anything beauty related you could ever imagine can be found here.

So grab that coffee or tea, get a blanket and get comfy….I’m ready to get this year started!!

Welcome to my little blogging beauty world!

~xo~
Flo





**Please note that my posts contain my genuine recommendations and opinions & not sponsored **