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Review: DESERT ESSENCE Cleansing Bar Tea Tree Therapy

17 Sep

I visited Healthy Options again last month. They caught my attention. The store has a lot of imported products from brands I never heard of. Aztec Secret Healing Clay Mask and TN Dickinson’s Witch Hazel to name a few bestsellers. I went through their shelves of skin & body care. I found many cleansers. It took me 30 minutes to decide what to buy. I chose Desert Essence’s Tea Tree bar soap for many reasons.

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Description:
Cleans and enriches all skin types. Softens skin with a silky, smooth finish. Works great as a prep for shaving. Moisturizing Jojoba Oil, soothing Aloe Vera and the antiseptic properties of our Eco-Harvest® Tea Tree Oil make this one therapeutic bar of soap. The refreshing, natural, vegetable-based formula can be used on your face and body. Made with sustainably harvested Palm Oil, certified by RSPO.

Ingredients:IMG_20170810_175430_606

Pros:
Available locally at Healthy Options
– Affordable, 299 pesos
– Huge soap, 142 grams
– Few ingredients
– Doesn’t melt easily
– Give enough lather
– Not over-drying
– Fresh tea tree scent
– Heals pimples as early as 2 days
– Did not cause breakouts
– Did not trigger contact dermatitis

Cons:
– None

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Let’s cut to the chase. This is one of the best cleansers I’ve used! 142 grams for 299 pesos is really affordable. You’ll get the most out of it because it doesn’t melt easily. It’s shelf life is 12 months after opening. It’s a huge soap so I cut it in 3 parts. I keep the rest in a cabinet.

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It gives enough lather to cleanse and remove oil. Its base is Saponified Palm and Kernel Oils so there’s a squeaky clean feel. It’s not over-drying though. I still recommend applying toner and moisturizer after. There’s Jojoba oil, Tea Tree oil , Aloe and Sodium Chloride… great balance of cleansing and moisturizing.

Best part about this soap is it heals pimples fast! Cystic acne can be dried up in 2 days. I don’t need to apply spot treatment anymore. There was no initial purging the first time I used it. You know that breakout you get when you use something new a.k.a “adjusting stage”. It didnt trigger my contact dermatitis. It’s safe for sensitive skin. So far this is my best purchase this 2017.😍❤

I saw Desert Essence’s liquid cleanser too but that one’s coconut oil based and has more ingredients. I prefer this because I’m trying to have minimal products in my routine. The brand also has 100% pure tea tree oil. It’s available locally. I might get that when I visit the store again.☺

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Review: LUSH Herbalism Face & Body Cleanser

1 Sep

I wanted to get my hands on this ever since I knew Lush. Their cleansing rolls are unique. They’re the first to make this kind of formula. Lushies on Youtube usually recommend Herbalism out of all their cleansing roll variants. I finally bought one to see if it’s worth it.

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Description:
Battling with oily, troubled skin? Cleanse with the power of herbs. Our gentle green giant has an exfoliating, deep-cleansing base of kaolin clay and rice bran to mop up excess oils, and a toning blend of rosemary, nettle and chamomile to leave skin feeling fresh, clean and calm. Herbalism gets its color from chlorophyllin, which is extracted from alfalfa plants: it’s rich in nourishing vitamins and minerals and helps to balance out your skin’s oil production. Say hello to clear, balanced skin!

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How to use:
Take a small amount in your hand, add a little water and mix into a paste. Massage into skin to gently cleanse, then rinse clean. Use all over your body for soft skin everywhere!

TIP:
Water activates clay. Before getting a chunk of this, make sure your hands are clean and dry. You dont want to get water in the tub because the rest will be ineffective already.

Ingredients:20170901_202552-1

Pros:
– Most of its ingredients are natural
– Free from artificial preservatives
– Smells good in my opinion
– Innovative product
– Little goes a long way
– Gentle exfoliant
– Non drying and adds moisture
– Skin feels soft and smooth
– Did not trigger my contact dermatitis
– Did not cause breakouts

Cons:
– Wont remove makeup if used alone
– Can be quite expensive if bought in Manila because it expires in a few weeks

It’s made from Kaolin clay, rice vinegar, rose and chamomile. These are known for their cleansing and soothing properties. It’s self-preserving, meaning the rice vinegar acts as natural presevative. Some people think it smells bad. To me, it smells good. It has a subtle vinegar-y and fresh scent. It’s like I’m one with nature. Haha!

The ground almonds are exfoliants. I thought it would be harsh but I was wrong! It’s gentle and did not irritate me. Note that you have to use gentle motions with any kind of scrubs. After rinsing, skin feels soft and smooth. I got dry and flaky patches from using an antibiotic cream for dermatitis. The main reason why I bought this is to help in moisturizing. It does the job without making my skin oilier. FYI, flare up was gone already when I used Herbalism.

I have two cons for this. It doesn’t remove makeup residue if used alone. Always use makeup remover before doing your routine. I use this for double cleansing when I had long day. I rinse my cleansing soap first then this. I use this alone when I’m just at home or did not wear makeup. Some reviewers complain about the green tinge after rinsing. I didn’t experience that when I saw the cotton ball after toning.

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Oh hey it’s you again Tetsu! Thanks for making this. Anyway, it’s quite expensive here in Manila. Why? Because we dont have our own Lush Kitchen (a.k.a factory). The stocks are imported from Japan. Cleanser rolls here can be used up to 6 weeks only before they expire. Little goes a long way so it’s quite difficult to use it all up. I bought one last August 15. It’s 545 pesos. The SA told me it was just delivered. Nag improve na yon. Dati kasi 3 to 4 weeks lang expired na. This is reasonably priced if bought in other countries with Kitchen. Fresh batches expire after 4 months. You’ll have enough time to finish a tub.

I use this at night only. Others prefer it twice daily. I just don’t want to over exfoliate. It’s clay based already so I skip my trusty aztec healing mask. Overall I really like Herbalism. This will be a staple for me if we have our own Lush Kitchen. I’d recommend it for all skin types that are not prone to breakouts.

Review: Himalaya Herbals Purifying Neem Facial Wash

18 Jun

This is my first “drugstore” cleanser for this year and first Indian brand as well. Meaning it’s something you could easily get almost anywhere. I bought a small tube in SM Department Store. It’s been three weeks already. I think I’m ready to share my experience with it.

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Description:
Purifying Neem Face Wash is loaded with the natural goodness of neem, a time-tested natural ingredient revered for its antibacterial property, which keeps Pimples at bay! It is also enriched with Turmeric, an antiseptic agent that soothes skin, leaving it healthy, clean and radiant! Himalaya Herbals Purifying Neem Face Wash, is a soap-free herbal face wash that helps prevent pimples by removing impurities, unclogging pores, while being extremely gentle on skin as it is formulated with 100% herbal actives and is free from skin harming chemicals like Paraben, SLS/ SLES. Daily use of this face wash avoids deposition of pimple-causing bacteria, oil and dirt and prevents occurrence of pimples. This face wash is suitable for all skin types (normal, oily, combination, sensitive) & is best for acne-prone

Ingredients:image

Pros:
– Affordable, 50 grams for 69 pesos at Watsons
– Simple tube packaging, no spills
– Love the fragrance
– SLS-free
– Milky lather
– Non drying
– Doesn’t leave film or sticky residue
– Did not cause breakouts
– Did not trigger contact dermatitis

Cons:
– Didn’t do anything on existing breakouts

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I brought this for our Hong Kong trip. The tube had no spills. It has milky and powdery scent which reminds me of Lactacyd. It doesn’t have a rich lather because it’s SLS-free… But it’s enough for cleansing in my opinion. It doesnt leave sticky or slimy film when rinsed. It’s very affordable and accessible. You can get this in supermarkets, drugstores and department stores.

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Neem extract is new to me so I was quite nervous to try this facial wash. Thank goodness it did not cause purging unlike other cleansers. I first knew about Neem extract from Phina’s Little Factory Cure Soap…which I’m planning to buy soon. I think this cleanser did not heal my existing breakouts. That’s the only down side I could give. So I’d recommend this for sensitive skin, mild acne and for maintenance.

Have you tried this product? What’s your all time favorite cleanser?

Review: The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%

4 Jun

I was introduced to this brand a few months ago. Thanks to youtubers especially to Wayne Goss. I visited Deciem’s website and viewed their products. I carefully chose the products that I think would work best for me. One of those is Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%.

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Description:
Niacinamide (Vitamin B3) is indicated to reduce the appearance of skin blemishes and congestion. A high 10% concentration of this vitamin is supported in the formula by zinc salt of pyrrolidone carboxylic acid to balance visible aspects of sebum activity.

Contraindications: If topical Vitamin C is used as part of skincare, it should be applied at alternate times with this formula (ideally Vitamin C in the PM and this formula in the AM). Otherwise, Niacinamide can affect integrity of pure-form Vitamin C (L-Ascorbic Acid).

Directions:
Apply to entire face morning and evening before heavier creams.

Ingredients:
Aqua (Water), Niacinamide, Pentylene Glycol, Zinc PCA, Tamarindus Indica Seed Gum, Xanthan Gum, Isoceteth-20, Ethoxydiglycol, Phenoxyethanol, Chlorphenesin.

Pros:
– Simple frosted glass packaging
– Straight to the point product name
– Affordable
– Oil free, silicone free, paraben free
– Watery serum
– No sticky residue
– Feels light on the skin
– Did not trigger contact dermatitis
– Did not cause breakouts
– Tightening effect
– Brightens skin tone
– Somehow healed new breakouts from my period

Cons:
– Skin looks shiny after application
– Little or no improvement on dark spots

Let’s discuss the cons first. I cant tell if it made improvements on my dark spots. Maybe it’s because mine are deep into dermis layer. I know it’s oil free but it makes my skin look shiny after application. Like it’s really polished and edited. I know that’s a good thing but I wasnt ready for that. Haha! It’s unreal. I look like the handsome Squidward below.

I’m liking their packaging and straight to the point product names. I already know its purpose and what are its actives. It’s intimidating for people who are new into skin care. But trust me, we don’t need cheesy names like “Bouncy Skin Moisturizing Cream”. Sorry I just made that name. I’m cringing but I hope you got my point. Haha!

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The serum is watery and it feels light on the skin. It doesn’t leave any sticky residue. Castor oil has a chance of blocking pores and a lot of moisturizers have it. Thank goodness this one is oil free! That’s actually the main reason why I bought this. It helps to heal breakouts from monthly period. I’m glad it didnt trigger my contact dermatitis. So it’s safe to say that it can be used on sensitive skin. My face is brighter and looks alive. I’ve also experienced tightening effect especially on the forehead area. It’s like botox. Overall, this is a great moisturizer for oily skin. It’s very affordable and high quality. I’d repurchase this again.☺

Review: MINISO Lemon & Aloe Cleansing Wipes

3 Jun

You guys know that I have tried Mumuso’s wipes before. All these shops are popping up. I hopped in the bandwagon again.😅 This is my intro review for Miniso. I roamed around and the first thing I noticed was their lemon cleansing wipes. It’s so big and I love products with lemon extracts. The aloe variant was just an impulse buy.

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ALOE WIPES

Pros:
– Affordable, 99 pesos for 30 sheets
– Each sheet is in a plastic pack
– No breakouts/contact dermatitis
– Great for traveling

Cons:
– Contains citric acid


LEMON REFRESHING WIPES

Pros:
– Affordable, 99 pesos
– 80 sheets
– With hard plastic seal
– Thick sheets
– Sheets are bigger compared to others
– Moist enough to remove makeup
– Removes all my makeup (bb cream, concealer and powder foundation)
– No breakouts/contact dermatitis

Cons:
– Contains citric acid


As you can see from the pros and cons, I prefer the Lemon Cleansing Wipes. Great price for the amount of sheets. The hard plastic seal will keep them moist. It completely removed my makeup. Aloe variant is more for freshening up. Carry it in your bag and/or wallet. They’re individually packed so it’s ideal for traveling. It wont take up much space in your bag.

I’m liking Miniso’s big paper bag for every purchase. It’s giving me Uniqlo and Muji vibes. Ooh fancy!😛 I’ll try more of their products soon. I’m on the waitlist for their bestselling Rose Toner. That one is hyped here in Manila. Let’s see if it will meet my standards.

What do you recommend from this brand?☺

Updated Skin Care Routine – May 2017

20 May

It took months to revamp my routine. Changing products should be one at a time. That’s the most important thing we should remember in cosmetics. Doing so will help you determine the culprit when you have irritations/breakouts. It’s confusing if you’ll use all the new products you’ve bought. The last time I updated my routine was in August 2016. I must say it changed a lot.


Skinlite & Mumuso Makeup Cleansing Tissues


I’m still using the same makeup remover. I prefer wipes because I’m a lazy person. They both do the job for me. They completely remove my everyday makeup (bb cream, concealer, lipstick and brow pencil). Note that I do not use eyeshadow, eyeliner, mascara, blush, bronzer, highlighter. Full review here & here.


Zenutrients Soothing Green Tea Glycerin Soap


My recent review was about this soap. It’s a maintenance soap. Green tea is good for calming and smells fresh. Ideal for sensitive skin and those who have mild to no breakouts. My 138 pesos was worth it. It’s very affordable. It doesnt melt easily. I’m also using this on the body depending on my mood. Full review here


Aztec Secret Healing Clay Mask


I dont even know when will I finish a tub of this. It’s HUGE! I havent even used 1/4 of it. It’s pure and effective for oily skin. I only use this twice a month because it’s too strong for me. It’s best rinsed with warm water. You can use mix it with plain water or apple cider vinegar if you do not have sensitive skin. Full review here


T.N. Dickinson’s Witch Hazel


This is probably my holy grail toner. It has one ingredient only. That’s 14% of alcohol. Gentle and effective enough to remove dirt. It’s just like water. No stickiness and film. It’s very affordable too. I think this 237ml is 270 pesos at Healthy Options branches. Full review here


The Ordinary Lactic Acid 10% + HA 2%


I gave in to the Youtube trend. I bought some products from The Ordinary. The brand caught my attention because of their ingredients and straight-to-the-point product names. We don’t need cheesy marketing names, right?☺ Lactic Acid 10% is first on my list. I used this for one week (every other day). I noticed superficial peeling. It’s been a month now and my skin is still peeling. I use this as spot treatment only. Mainly for dark spots and pimples. Full review coming soon!


The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%


My second product from the brand is their Niacinamide serum. It’s ideal for brightening and for oily and acne prone skin. It has a very light consistency. I’m using this for 2 weeks now. Same with Lactic Acid 10%, it’s too early to tell its effects. But I’m liking it so far. Full review coming soon!


Organic Alley Argan Oil


This is the safest oil for oily skin. It’s doesnt block pores unlike other oils. Im using this at night. Mostly when I feel dehydrated. It makes my skin glowy. I use this daily under my eyes and on the cheek bones. It helps to smoothen out skin. I find it easier to apply makeup over this. Full review here


Beta-N Cream


What is Beta N? According to NetDoctor, “Betamethasone and neomycin cream is used in short courses to treat inflammatory skin conditions (like eczema, dermatitis, rashes) when milder corticosteroids have not been effective and when the condition is either already infected or likely to become infected.” This is our ride or die. If ever my contact dermatitis flares up, I apply this cream. It calms the skin even in one use. It’s very effective. I can’t live without it.


This is the best routine I’ve got so far. What’s your holy grail skin care? Please share them below so we can all check it out.😊

Review: ZENUTRIENTS Soothing Green Tea Glycerin Soap

11 May

My dermatologist prescribed a glycerin-based soap which I ran out of. It’s quite expensive so I looked for alternatives that I can get at the mall. Zenutrients is first on my list. It’s one of the most well-known local brands today.

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INGREDIENTS:
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PROS:
– Affordable, 138 pesos for 100 grams
– Accessible, can be bought in Zenutrients kiosks and stockists
– Few ingredients
– Smells amazing
– Doesn’t melt easily
– Did not trigger my contact dermatitis
– Doesn’t leave film, greasy or sticky feeling
– Skin feels clean and fresh

CONS:
– None

The soap has translucent appearance like gulaman/jello. There are bits of green tea leaves on top. #Aesthetic. It’s very affordable for its size. I struggled holding it when it was new. Haha! I’m going to cut it next time. Zenutrients’ tip: keep the other half in a dry and cool place so its curing process continues. Water evaporates by doing that which makes the soap last longer.

It has few ingredients. Perfect for minimalists. My skin is unpredicatable with coconut oil which bothered me at first. Sometimes that oil is okay, sometimes it’s not. Thank goodnes this soap works for me. Now for the effects, I think it caused one or two pimples in the first week. My skin was adjusting but it did not happen again. It’s safe to use for sensitive skin. No redness and rashes. It has enough lather for my liking. No hot or heavy feeling as well. It’s not like other products where you’ll get intense heavy lather.

This did not prevent nor cause breakouts. It’s a maintenance soap for me. Overall, I like it a lot.☺👍 I’m planning to try their other variants; Pure Glycerin (for extra sensitive skin) and Turmeric & Lemon. I observed all the dermatologists I’ve consulted to recommended glycerin soap. Probably because it’s mild and moisturizing. Get this kind of base especially if you’re sensitive or scared of irritations.