Things I Love to Put on My Face

Things I Love (to Put on my Face) Beach Vacay Skincare Edition

I’m going to the Jersey Shore tomorrow! But not that Jersey Shore. The Bruce Springsteen Asbury Park/gay clubs/my grandmother’s nursing home Jersey Shore. I love using samples and foils on vacations, it’s a great opportunity to try new products and keep my bag light. I’m really lucky and my skin isn’t super sensitive so I can try things out with little fear. Here’s what I’m bringing.

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Bioderma Sensibio H2O Micellar Water is the only full-size item I’m bringing. I should decant it into a smaller bottle but, hey, I’m lazy. It’s the best micellar water I’ve used. It doesn’t leave a film like some American drugstore alternatives and it’s incredibly gentle and effective at removing makeup.

I brought two cleansers, Philosphy’s Purity Made Simple and Kate Somerville EradiKate Daily Cleanser I’ve used and loved the EradiKate, even though it says it’s a daily cleanser I don’t recommend using it daily. I’m bringing it just in case I encounter a breakout or just need an extra physical exfoliating boost. I haven’t used the Philosophy cleanser, but I’m game to try anything. I haven’t had a lot of luck with Philosophy’s products but I’m willing to give them a second chance (and, honestly, cleansers are one of those products that, as long as it’s not too stripping, I can make work regardless of efficacy).

Differin Gel is a god damn game changer for me. I’ve been using it for a little over a week and I (think) my acne purge has finally ended (side note, from my research it normally takes a lot longer for people to finish purging).

OLEHENRIKSEN Truth Serum isn’t my favorite vitamin c serum, but it’s not my least favorite either. Some people, really, really, love it but I’ve had similar (better?) results from more affordable vitamin c serums. This is the OG of prestige vitamin c serums though, so let’s give respect when it’s due. Anyways, bring some vitamin c on a beach vacation! Get those antioxidants on your damn face!

I’m a moisturizer monster and need three, Fresh’s Lotus Youth Preserve Face Cream, Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Deep Moisture Balm, and IT Cosmetics’ Confidence in a CreamI’ve used the IT Cosmetics once already and it is a god damn moisturizer y’all. I’m very excited to slather that thick shit on my weather beaten salt fried face before rolling into bed after the beach. I haven’t used the Fresh moisturizer before but I love their other products I’ve used and I’m ready to preserve this youthful 26-year-old face. My dear friend Christian gives me all the samples that come with his Kiehl’s orders. I love Kiehl’s and have probably used this moisturizer a million years ago when I lived near the Kiehls store on the LES but I honestly do not remember! What an adventure.

Sunscreen is probably the most important thing to bring to the beach, so I’m bringing three: Shiseido Ultimate Sun Protection Cream WetForce for face SPF50Clarins Sunscreen MultiProtection SPF 50and Murad Invisiblur Perfecting Shield SPF 30I’ve used all three of these before and I love them all. The Shiseido is super thick and leaves a white-cast, but it’s water resistant so I’m going to wear that shit when I’m swimming (it also smells nice). The Clarins used to be my holy grail sunscreen, I’ve since moved on to NeoGen but it still holds a place in my heart. I’ve talked about the Murad in this post.

I got Shea Moisture’s Foaming Milk & Body Wash for free from Influenster and have been terrible and haven’t used it yet. I am (sort of) avoiding plastic and buy bar soap as my body soap and I love Shea Moisture’s bar soaps so I have really high hopes for this body soap.

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Things I Love to Put on My Face

Things I Love (to Put on my Face) Just Some Crap I’ve Recently Bought Edition

Cool Cool. It’s been a minute. Life is an emotional roller coaster! Here’s a low effort post of things that I’ve bought recently to make myself feel better.

I re-upped on Boy Brow and Perfecting Skin Tint. Boy brow is the best brow product I’ve ever used (I still love my ABH brow pencil but, like, I hate actually filling in my brows). Someone on reddit described Skin Tint as “homeopathic,” which is a lie. It’s very, very subtle, but it does even out my skin tone!

I got Nars’ Radiant Creamy Concealer and Dior Fusion Mono Eyeshadow in Chimere when I ran out of my Maybelline lumi concealer (it’s a good concealer but it did not last long at all, I might as well shell out for high-end concealer if I’m gonna finish it in a month). I got the Nars in Chantilly, but it’s actually a little too light for my skin tone, but the darker shades don’t have the correct undertones. I refuse to return makeup so I’m wearing this ish until it’s done. The formula is great and it stays all day. I’m obsessed with the Dior eyeshadow and have worn it nearly every day since I bought it. It’s great as an all over shadow or an inner corner highlight.

My quest to stop buying as much crap online has led me to CVS and Skinfix Hydrating Lotion I typically use Embryolisse for my AM moisturizer but it’s basically impossible to get in person in Maryland and I didn’t need anything else from Beautylish (I don’t trust the ones on Amazon!). I grabbed this Skinfix stuff because the ingredient list seems great. It’s a very, very light moisturizer, which is perfect for humid summer days. I’m big on light moisturizing layers during the summer. I’ve used this for a couple of days now and I’m into it. It’s much thinner and waterier than embryolisse, they’re essentially completely different products. Since this is so light I recommend this lotion for people who are moisturizer adverse. It doesn’t play super nice with my Neogen sunscreen, I’ve noticed some slight pilling if I don’t wait long enough between applications. I’m definitely going to go back to embryolisse when I need to reorder some bioderma or TO facial oils but this is a great drugstore option.

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Things I Love to Put on My Face

Things I Love (to Put on my Face) Gel Sunscreens. That’s it.

Glossier’s* new sunscreen has put the internet skincare community in an absolute tizzy. It’s a gel! It’s got chemical filters instead of physical filters! It’s $35! It is not the exact product that I, the magnificent decider of the worth of all skincare, desired. Anyways, people are insane. Glossier’s sunscreen looks awesome, it leaves 0 white cast, it’s a freaking gel, and it’s not loaded up with alcohol.

I always suggest gel formulas to men with facial hair! Yes, I love a good physical sunscreen on myself but I am pale AF and don’t have a beard. There’s nothing worse than your skin looking ashy because of your sunscreen or having gross white globs in your man’s beard. Embrace the gel. Here are two of my favorites (that cost a helluva lot more than the Glossier one…):

Murad’s Invisiblur Perfecting Shield is a mattifying/blurring gel sunscreen. It reminds me of that miracle blur shit that Olay was shilling a while back. It feels like Smashbox’s primer and goes on beautifully. I’m not super into matte faces myself but I’ve definitely thrown this at my boyfriend because I was sick of him complaining about how sweaty and shiny his face gets. Typically if I’m wearing this it’s when I’m running around doing errands with no makeup on.

Cover FX’s Clear Cover is my favorite out of all the gel sunscreens I’ve used. It’s actually a light yellow in the bottle still, it applies clear. The texture is similar to Murad’s but the finish is far more natural looking. It won’t make your skin matte, but it also won’t make it look dewy (unless it already does). This formula also has squalane and some other awesome antioxidants. I am into it.

 

*affiliate link cause I want store credit to buy more highlighter

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Things I Love to Put on My Face

Things I Love (to Put on My Face) Sephora Spring 2017 Sale Edition

It feels really gross that every beauty guru and blog is picking out what you should buy at Sephora during the Beauty Insider sale. Have we all stooped so low and are willingly providing free advertising in celebration of a measly 15% off?

That said, here’s my post on the sale.

Don’t buy something unless you need it. For the most part, my general rule is: don’t buy something on sale that you wouldn’t buy full price. So I am making two very conscious purchases during this sale and nothing else.

This Surratt Beauty eyeliner is shockingly expensive, but it’s refillable and the cartridges are only $18. After I left my big girl job I was on the hunt for a less expensive version of the Stila Stay All Day Liner (I love you Stila) and, guess what, all the drug store versions suck balls. NYX repeatedly has let me down. Elf is a joke. I used L’oreal’s in high school. In came Surratt Beauty. Their cartridges are less expensive than Stila’s single-use pens. Which means I am creating less waste with my makeup and saving money. Buying this during the sale because it’s a one time purchase and I might as well make the most of it, yeah? I haven’t actually tried it yet, it’s online only, but Katie Jane Hughes says it’s the best. Who needs to try something before you buy it?

This Belif Moisturizer is a cult favorite for a good reason. I first heard about it on Stephanie Nicole’s Channel (my favorite youtuber). I had used the aqua bomb before and was not that big of a fan, I have really dry skin, you guys (have I mentioned that before?), so the moisturizing bomb was really intriguing. Well, I have blown my way through ever sample that Sephora could give me while I tried to clean out my moisturizer stash and I have fallen in love. By the time the sale starts I’ll be able to justify buying a new moisturizer.

And that’s it. Don’t buy stuff because I’m buying it. Buy some face wash and use your discount because you’re out of facewash. Buy a new red lipstick because you’re almost out of your regular red lipstick. Chill out. You don’t need another eye palette filled with neutrals. You definitely don’t need more contouring products.

 

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Things I Love to Put on My Face

Things I Love (to Put on My Face) Vitamin C Edition

Basically, every skincare guru recommends Vitamin C, and with good reason. It is an amazing antioxidant, it helps with collagen production, it helps with sun protection, it lightens, it brightens, it’s a god damn superstar. Typically when some skincare junkie is talking about Vitamin C they mean L-Ascorbic Acid. Nearly every DIY Vitamin C serum is made with it. While L-Ascorbic Acid has all of the amazing benefits of Vitamin C it is not very shelf stable and is quick to oxidize. Many, many people recommend keeping serums with L-Ascorbic Acid in the fridge. There are stable formulations on the market, The Ordinary and Clinique both have some, but they are not super user-friendly. If you’re a lazy gal on a quest for good skin it’s best to look outside the world of L-Ascorbic Acid, because sometimes it’s best to just throw something on your face and go. Here’s an excellent primer on some of the different types of Vitamin C available, so you’re not just taking my word for it.

Mad Hippie’s serum, made with Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate, might be my favorite Vitamin C serum that I have tried. Out of all the serums I have used it is the best at fading acne marks. There is some evidence that Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate prevents acne, so for those of you who want the antiaging and antioxidant benefits of vitamin c but also struggle with acne, Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate might be the derivative for you.

Glossier’s Super Glow is a great way to enter the world of Vitamin C. It’s made with Aminopropyl Ascorbyl Phosphate. AAP is a newer derivative of VitC. It’s incredibly stable and inhibits melanin production, which means it prevents age spots, melasma, etc. Glossier’s formula is very popular but I’m not the biggest fan. It’s super watery and I’m too messy and too sleepy to deal with that shit in the morning. It is effective, but I’m to me to use it.

I am currently using the Ordinary’s Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate in my AM routine. I have incredibly dry skin so a VitC derivative in an oil formula is enticing. I have been using this formulation since mid-February. Deciem/The Ordinary is very upfront about derivatives not being as potent at ascorbic acid but I am a little disappointed in this serum’s performance. Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate is a derivative I have not used before, but like other derivatives, it is heralded for its stability and brightening abilities. Unfortunately, I noticed no difference in my skin’s “brightness” and it made zero difference on my red spots (and let me tell you, skipping washing my face after St. Patricks’ day was a bad idea, and this serum was given a lot to work with). I do like the fact that it is a light oil-based serum, my dry skin loved it. It smells like cleaning supplies and I actually have to be really careful about applying it near my nose because the smell is too much.

This week I started a sample of Biossance’s Squalane and Vitamin C and Rose Oil at the end of my PM routine. It uses Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate, a derivative that is frequently found in high-end face oils with vitamin c (like Kypris’ 1,000 Roses). This is less of a vitamin c product and more of a fancy indulgent face oil that makes you feel good. Since I have started using it I have noticed a stark difference in the PIH on my face, I am not sure if this is just because I am getting vitamin c in my am and pm routine or if it truly does outperform The Ordinary formulation that I am using. Maybe my PIH has just started to fade, really, really fast.  Since Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate appears second to last on the ingredient list I would not recommend this to someone who is actively looking to include Vitamin C in their routine, it’s more of a nice little bonus for this oil.

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Things I Love to Put on My Face

Things I Love (to Put on My Face) Sunny and Bright Edition

I’m a pale, pale lady. I wear lots of sunscreen. Regardless of your melanin status, you should too. I also talk about something that’s not a sunscreen. We could just call this, “things I have actually bought and used in the last few days.”

This Missha sunscreen is the tits. The name, All Around Safe Block Soft Finish Sun Milk SPF 50+/PA+++ is a little much but that’s okay! It’s a water-resistant mineral sunscreen that doesn’t leave a white cast. I, unfortunately, had to stop using it because the alcohol in it was way too drying for my winter skin but I’m still keeping it around for when summer humidity hits it in high gear. Also, it’s maybe not FDA approved??? But hey, it’s a great sunscreen!

 Clinique’s been killing it lately*, and this sunscreen is a true testament to that. It has a bunch of the things I like about the aforementioned Missha sunscreen but it’s free of denatured alcohol so it’s less drying. The biggest downside is that it’s $26 for 1 oz (I wish it was more than SPF 30, but I can live with that). Honestly, I will pay a stupid amount of money for a cosmetically elegant mineral sunscreen I can pop in my purse.

I got a sample tube of this Tarte highlighting moisturizer when I ordered my Clinique sunscreen and I am into it. Yes, it’s basically a more glittery/expensive version of the Aveeno day cream I used in high school. But also, body glitter is coming back. This is like the adult version of the glitter sticks you used to be able to buy at Limited Too. While I probably won’t use this as my primary moisturizer, it looks amazing mixed in with my Glossier Perfecting Skin Tint (use this link to get 20% off your first purchase kthanks). It provides a nice healthy “glow from within” and in my mind one can never be too sparkly or too glowy. I’m definitely going to use it as an easy highlight on days where I’m not wearing makeup but I want a little something on my cheeks.

 

*okay, fine, always.

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Things I Love to Put on My Face

Things I Love (to Put on My Face) Glossy, Dewy, Shiny Edition

Makeup and skincare are blessings from on high. Let us celebrate this blessing with a bevy of links.

 

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@katiejanehughes on Instagram

Katie Jane Hughes’ Instagram is important. Follow her on a journey towards natural feather brows, graphic eyeliner, and glossy lids.

 
Craft glitter is the ultimate shiny highlight. Last time I was in NY I went to The Royal Palms and my friend Karen and I attacked a server because we were obsessed with the glitter on her face. She happily told us that it was just regular craft glitter and she didn’t need anything to stick it to her face, it just stayed. Try it with some minimal makeup for a fresh look and maybe a dab of Vaseline for an extra glossy cheek.

 
The Ordinary’s Argan Oil is plain old Argan oil. Guess what though, it doesn’t cost a stupid amount of money. It’s $6.80. Six dollars and eighty cents. Six dollars and eighty cents. AND IT’S 30 FUCKING ML. I have long been a fan of using Argan oil in my hair but now that I have such an inexpensive bottle I use it all over. I love using argan oil as a last step in my skincare before moisturizer. Seriously. This stuff saved my skin this winter. It’s also great for cuticles and once I used it as chap stick.

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