6 Itchy Skin Resolutions

During the Winter months our skin tends to be drier due to the weather conditions. We often slather it up with lotions and salves looking for relief but there is so much more you should be doing for your skin to help it remain healthy and supple.

 

  1. Launder your sheets. Sweat, dead skin cells, and general outside grime is rubbed into our bed sheets daily.  These irritants may be causing your itchy skin. You should wash your sheets at least weekly add a capful of bleach to disinfect or ammonia if your sheets are colored.
  2. Exfoliate. Your skin is a living organ and it sheds skin cells every day.  You need to help make sure those cells are actually departing from your body. Using a wash cloth is a good first step but a loofah or brush is better.  Make sure you ask a friend or loved one to hit your back for you or use one with a long handle. You also want to use a body scrub twice a month to help really smooth out your skin,
  3. Turn down the temp. I love a hot shower. Love. But exposing your skin to hot water for long periods of time is drying to your skin. Turning down the temperature of the water and taking shorter showers can help maintain the natural oils in your skin and alleviate dryness.
  4. Cleanse gently.  When looking for a body wash or soap many of us pay more attention to how the product smells over how it makes our skin feel.  We also feel like our skin needs to be stripped to be clean, this is untrue. A lot of the cleansers found in body wash we wouldn’t dare put on our hair or face, but we slather it all over the rest our our bodies.  Look for washes without SLS, SLES, ALES and other harsh salts. Also avoid washes with silicones as these create a layer over the skin and this residue can prevent moisturization.
  5. Wipe me down. After bathing most people grab a nice fluffy towel and rub their body down.  This is actually contributing to the dry skin problem as well. That water is adding moisture to your skin it is actually better if you leave your skin damp before applying your oil, butter or lotion.  Secondly, that vigorous rubbing is not helping either.  Opt for patting yourself down with a towel or even better using your damp washcloth to wipe down most of the water but still leaving your skin moist.
  6. Butter up. Right out of the shower when your skin is still moist butter up that skin to lock in the moisture, replace natural oils lost while cleansing, soften and protect your skin.  Make sure you ask for help for hard to reach areas like your back.

Product Review: Freeman Charcoal & Black Sugar Polishing Mask

Freeman Charcoal Black Sugar Polishing Mask

Freeman 

Charcoal & Black Sugar Polishing Mask

6 oz / ~$4

Available online at Freemans.com and many drugstores

ing: Sucrose, Propylene Glycol, Carbon*, Kaolin, Musa Sapientum (Banana) Fruit Extract , Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Extract, Zingiber Officinale (Ginger) Root Extract, Psidium Guajava Fruit Extract, Cymbopogon Schoenanthus Extract, Carica Papaya (Papaya) Fruit Extract, Maranta Arundinacea Root Extract, Rubus Idaeus (Raspberry) Fruit Extract, Santalum Album (Sandalwood) Extract, Macrocystis Pyrifera Extract, Nasturtium Officinale Extract, Aleurites Moluccana Extract, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Carbomer, Fragrance (Parfum), Iron Oxides (CI 77491).

From the website:  This unique mask and scrub works double time to detox skin. First, naturally purifying Activated Charcoal helps absorb oil and impurities without over-drying. Then, Black Sugar helps exfoliate away dulling skin cells for softness and clarity. Perfect for all skin types.

You gotta exfoliate. Everyone should exfoliate their face at least twice weekly. Exfoliation helps to remove dead skin cells which can help relieve dry, rough, uneven skin.  Facial scrubs are formulated to be gentle on your face and neck where the skin is more delicate as compared to other areas of the body. However you can also use this scrub on your chest, under your arms, on your scalp and anywhere else you can use gentle exfoliation. Remember to wash your skin first as this is not a combo cleanser and exfoliant.

5 Things I Love About This Product

  1. Super gentle, but incredibly effective. The small sugar crystals manage to work well without scratching up your skin.
  2. It’s formulated for all skin types which is great for my combo skin. It treats my oily T-zone as well as the rest of my face which is normal to dry.
  3. A little goes a long way. I squeeze out about a 2 inch line on my finger and apply to my entire face and neck.
  4. The product rinses clean, no oily or sticky residue left behind.
  5. The smell is sugary sweet with light floral notes.

Now I gotta tell you I absolutely love Origins facial products, they are fantastic.  But they are also very expensive. The Freeman products are effective and one-tenth of the price.  My daughter who has oily, acne-prone skin uses this scrub as well and she loves it. I also use this on my pre-teen son as part of his weekly skincare regimen, gotta keep that baby soft skin intact. I would definitely recommend this scrub to anyone who is in the market for a facial scrub.

 

Product Review: Melodic Elements

Melodic Elements Natural Deodorant

Melodic Elements

Natural Deodorant

$5 for 2 oz stick

Available on Melodic Elements website

Jasmine, Lavender, Peppermint Lemongrass, Patchouli, Orange scents

ing: shea butter, arrowroot powder, baking soda, essential oil fragrance.

I know simple ingredients list right? That is one of the reasons I switched to using natural deodorants. I wanted to simplify my life by using more natural products with ingredients I could recognize. I also wanted to move away from antiperspirants that contain harmful ingredients that may be cancer causing. I made that switch for good over 3 years ago.  And while I have not regretted my decision, there have been times that I have been less than fresh and that is not okay.  Along this path of hits and misses I was happy about Melodic Elements which is not only Kentucky proud and a Louisville original, it is a Black female owned small business *triple word score* [full disclosure the owner is a friend of mine].

5 Things I Love About This Product

  1. Simple all natural ingredients. There are several natural deodorants on the market but many of them contain a long list of ingredients that I have to research. I love that the ingredients listed are readily understood.
  2. Smells divine.  I purchased the Jasmine scent for myself and the Peppermint for my son. They both smell very pleasant but are not overwhelming.
  3. It works. More than wanting to use a natural product I need the product to actually work and this one does. All day long. It has been proven by lasting all day on my pre-teen son. He no longer smells like “outdoor” when he comes home from school.
  4. It lasts.  I can apply this deodorant in the morning and get at least 12 hour wear. Actually I just smelled myself and I still smell good so make that 14 hour wear.
  5. The applicator. I just don’t care for scooping out deodorant with my fingers, I need an applicator.  Not only does it come in an applicator but it works and does not get stuck.

In addition to these things the shea butter base formula glides on easy no crumbing or caking and it absorbs well into the skin.  I have not had any issue with build up or yellowing on the inside of my shirts. I still exfoliate under my arms weekly before shaving but I have not had a concern of build up. I will repurchase this product again and plan to soon actually because I am almost out however one stick lasted for 2+ months.

Product Review: Thayers Witch Hazel Pads

Thayers Witch Hazel Pads

Thayers Witch Hazel Pads

60 pads, about $7

Available at drug stores, health food stores and online

ing: Purified Water, SD Alcohol 40-B (Natural Grain) 10%, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice (Certified Organic Filet of Aloe Vera), Hamamelis Virginiana Extract (made from Certified Organic Witch Hazel), Glycerin (Vegetable), Fragrance (Natural Witch Hazel), Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Seed Extract, Citric Acid.

Skincare is super important and creating a skin regimen that adjusts to the changes in your skin can be challenging.  Many of you found awesome products in your teens and just kept using them. I need y’all to do better.  One thing that should be included as part of your regimen is witch hazel. Witch hazel is a natural astringent that works to tone, cleanse and tighten the skin, read more about here.

Thayers Witch Hazel Pads are reminiscent of old school Oxy pads except they don’t feel like they are going to burn your face off.  I use them after cleansing my face nightly to make sure the excess oil and makeup are removed and to shrink my pores.  The cool soothing sensation is an amazing feeling.  I also take these pads with me while traveling for a quick facial cleanse when I cannot do a full wash.

5 Things I Love About This Product

  1. It cleanses gently without burning. I’ve used these to clean cuts and scrapes on my son without him hollering and wincing.
  2. You can actually feel your skin tightening after use however it does not feel excessively dry.
  3. The pads also soothe. After long days on the beach in the sun I wipe down my face with one of the pads it feels so good.
  4. The pads come in a plastic container so they won’t dry out.  The one thing I hate about face wipes is those packages is that they never stay sealed and they always end up drying out.
  5. My favorite thing is that the pads of a scrubby side and a smooth one. I like to use the scrubby side on my T-zone and the softer side on my cheeks and around the eyes.

I am sure some of you are thinking the product seems great but the $7 price tag is a bit expensive as compared to $3 alternative.  But I promise you it is worth it. Also using one pad a day this jar will last you for two months. You are worth it and your skin will thank you.

Product Review: Montagne Jeunesse Chocolate Masque

Montagne Jeunesse Chocolate Masque

Montagne Jeunesse

Chocolate Masque 

0.7 oz, < $2

Available at Ulta, Walmart, Kroger and other drug stores

ing: Purified water, Kaolin clay, Illite clay, Glycerin, Glyceryl stearate SE, Bentonite clay, Theobroma cacao (cocoa) seed butter, Ceteareth-20, Butyrospemum parkii (Shea butter),  Theobroma cacao (cocoa) shell powder, Sea salt (Dead Sea salt), Aroma, Glucose, Lactoperoxidase, Citric acid, Glucose oxidase, Iron oxides.

Nourish your skin with a feast of rich and creamy delights! Rich in natural ingredients this deep cleansing chocolate mud masque will help to unblock pores, allowing impurities to be drawn out.  Coupled with the skin healing properties of Dead Sea Salt and the moisturizing benefits of Cocoa Butter and Shea Butter, you will be left with renewed, re-hydrated and younger looking skin. For normal, dry and combination skin.

Taking care of my skin is very important.  At least weekly as part of my skincare regimen I deep cleanse, exfoliate and apply a mud mask.  I regularly mix up my own mask, but it is fun to try other masks available.  This mask caught my attention because it was inexpensive and a small one-time-use amount so I didn’t have to commit to an entire jar or tube.

5 Things I Like About This Product

  1. Its smells like chocolate. I actually thought about tasting it but then I came to my senses.
  2. While it is only 0.7 ounces, it is more than enough for a couple or three applications. I normally apply some to my face and neck and some to Lil Prince’s face as well and there is still more left in the package.
  3. The product goes on very smoothly.  The consistency is actually perfect not runny at all but not too thick that it is difficult to extract from the packaging.  It is very creamy comparable to thick body cream.
  4. It is super inexpensive. There are so many different flavors offered and I love that you could pick up a different one for every week of the month for less than $2 each.
  5. It rinses clean once dry and leaves the skin feeling tightened, balanced and hydrated.

I have used a couple different masks from this line. My personal favorite as far as overall feel is the Dead Sea Mud Pac.  An extra tip is to place the mask in the fridge before use, it will feel so good applying the cool mask to your skin. If you have any leftover mask you can push it toward the bottom of the pack, seal in a ziplock bag and place in the fridge for future use. I have left a previously opened pack in the fridge for two weeks and it was fine.  Next time you are perusing the beauty section of the drug or grocery store pick up mask and give it a try.

Product Review: Yes to Grapefruit Skin Care

Yes to Grapefruit Skin careYes to Grapefruit

Daily Facial Scrub

4 oz, $9.99

Available at Target, Walmart and other drug stores

ing: Water, Decyl Glucoside, Glycerin, Polylactic Acid, Lauryl Glucoside, Xanthan Gum, Limonene, Glyceryl Oleate, Fragrance, Phenethyl Alcohol, Coco-Glucoside, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil*, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Citric Acid, Glyceryl Caprylate, Melissa O cinalis Leaf Extract, Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Peel Extract*.

I am always on a quest for the best facial wash.  I have found many that I have liked and worked well but it seems my skin needs change and the product is no longer effective.  I have normal skin with a slightly oily T-zone.  My skin freaks out with every change of seasons and I have noticed dark spots are coming.  Yes to was having a great online sale so I decided to take the opportunity and check out some new products.

I purchased the Yes to Grapefruit line because it’s aim is to correct and repair skin which seems to fit my skincare needs. According to the manufacturer: grapefruit is rich in Vitamin C and Lycopene both of which are anti-oxidant heavy hitters that even skin tone and enhance luminosity. This daily facial scrub is the first in my opinion to have truth in advertising. The product has tiny micro scrubbers that were safe to use daily and did not feel like it was over scrubbing my face.

5 Things I Loved About This Product

  1. It smells amazing. Delicious citrus scent that really is invigorating.
  2. Gentle but effective the mild scrubbers help exfoliate the skin between weekly treatments.
  3. Super concentrated formula suds up well with just a tiny amount of product.
  4. Product rinses clean easily with just a few splashes of water.
  5. Skin feels light and clean after washing with no residue or over drying feeling.

I purchased the Yes to Grapefruit skin care bundle which also included Dark Spot Correcting Serum and Dark Circle Correcting Eye Cream.  The Dark Spot Serum I did not care for. I don’t like the smell or the film it leaves as it dries.  I will not repurchase this product.  As for the Correcting Eye Cream I liked it. Not sure if it is actually making a difference, but I figure it cannot hurt. I would only purchase this product again as part of a bundle not on its own. I will definitely repurchase the Daily Facial Scrub as it was amazing.

Natural Skin Care Products via Natural Review Box

If you have followed me for awhile you know that I love not only natural hair products but natural skin care products too.  One of my favorite subscription services is Natural Review Sample Box because it comes with so many great natural products for hair, body, skin care, and home.  I was not familiar with either of these brands prior to receiving them in the box, but I used them both and decided to do a mini review on my experience.

blum naurals cleansing towelettesBlum Naturals 

Daily Cleansing & Makeup Remover Towelettes

$6.99 for pack of 30 wipes

Available at Whole Foods, Earth Fare, VitaCost.com and others

ing: Aqua (Water), Decyl Glucoside**, Organic Chamomile Extract*, Organic Aloe Vera Extract*, Lavender Oil*, Vanilla Oil*, Patchouli Oil*, Gluconolactone***, Sodium Benzoate***, Glycerin*.

So I love these disposable makeup remover towelettes.  I keep them near my bed so when I drag myself in after a long night I can just grab a wipe and remove any makeup, sweat, food or whatever from my face when I am too lazy to go wash it *don’t judge me*.  The awesome thing about these towelettes is that the actually do remove makeup including my eyeshadow + primer which regular soap and water or baby wipes cannot. I received the chamomile towelettes which smell lightly scented like chamomile tea.  These wipes are gentle on my skin, do no cause dryness or leave a film after use.  I will definitely repurchase.

kiki bella mud  maskKiki Bella

Beauty Mud

available on Etsy 

ing: made with natural clay from the Great Salt Lake mixed with purified water.

I use mud mask once per week as part of my skin care regimen. Mud masks help to remove dirt, oil and impurities from my skin, reduce blemishes and to firm the skin as well.  I only received a small heat seal pack of mud mask but it was enough for 3 applications.  To use I first wash my face with mild cleanser, exfoliate with a facial scrub, then apply the mud mask.  This mask is very simple it smells like mud, there are no frills to it but it works well.  The product claims that the salt found in the mud from the great salt lake is supposed to be superior for your skin. I cannot say that this mud was worked any better than others I have used, but it was not any worse so I cannot speak to those claims.

I was pleased with both products I received and I had great results incorporating them into my skin care regimen.  For more info on Natural Review Box check out my video below from my April reveal video.  If you have tried any new skin care products leave a comment below and let me know about them. 

Product Review: Buddha Balm

buddha balmBuddha Balm

Natural Plant Based Lip Balm

~$3 for .15 oz

Available online and select natural stores

ing: Soybean oil, Coconut oil, Shea Butter, Beeswax, Ozokerite wax, flavor oil, Lanolin oil, Vitamin E, Candelilla wax, Carnauba wax, Zinc Oxide, Capric/Caprylic Triglycerides, Licorice root extract, organic Stevia, Propiertary herbal extract blend.

So I was introduced to this line by one of my subbies who commented on my Eos lip balm review.  I love my Eos but my subbie stated that Buddha Balm was even better.  Challenge Accepted.  I have to admit I had never heard of this product before it was mentioned.  I hit up the google machine to find answers.  Buddha Balm is not available in the Louisville, KY area at any B&M store so I asked them would they mind sending me the product. They obliged and actually sent me several balms to try.  I enlisted the help of some of my co-workers to help me review the products.

Buddha Balm PackageThe package I received included 5 lip balms, a button, sticker and a handwritten note.  The first thing I noticed is that Buddha Balm has awesome exotic flavors that I could not wait to try.  I used the Mandarin Orange Ginger, April used the Burnt Sugar Fig, Megan used the Lychee Pomegranate and Joey the Crushed Mint Pineapple.  I had each of the testers use their Buddha Balm exclusively for one week and report back.  April, Megan and I all sampled each others flavors and were all in agreement that the flavors tasted as delicious as they smelled.  We loved that the balm went on incredibly smooth and did not leave a waxy feeling.  It was easy to apply lipgloss, lipstick, etc over top and it did not feel heavy.  Megan liked it better than her normal lip balm her only complaint is that it is not a vegan product.  April said the lip balm made her lips very soft and that she felt the need to kiss everyone, lol.  Joey rarely uses lip balm unless it is cold and his lips are dry. He was the least enthusiastic about trying the product but he said it worked okay. He would buy it again if it was convenient for him but would not go out of his way for a lip balm.

5 Things I Loved About This Product

  • It applies silky smooth to the lips.  I hate when you feel like you need to blot your lips after applying lip gloss to get rid of the excess, but I did not have this problem with this product.
  • 5 fantastic flavors that taste and smell delicious; Mandarin Orange Ginger, Burnt Sugar Fig, Lychee Pomegranate, and Sweet Melon Coconut.
  • 100% natural ingredients, primarily plant based including shea butter and coconut oil.
  • Long-lasting product.  I received my lip balm in September and it lasted me thru November.
  • Super soft lips, that make you want to make out.

I super love these lip balms and I will be putting my money where my mouth is.  Right now Buddha Balm is offering 10% off + free shipping if you purchase from their website.  You can also check them out on FB and on Twitter.  Have you checked out Buddha Balm, what were your thoughts?