I've had mine for a few years. My son (age 15) and I both love using it. It's very therapeutic and relaxing. I use it when I'm doing my Aztec healing mask or OCM. Love using it and it feels like I'm pampering myself (spa at home). Very inexpensive. I'd buy it again. :)
Cleansers -Unlisted Brand - Joesoef Anti Acne Soap
Ceci2468 5/26/2009 9:57:00 AM
I e-mailed the company for a free sample of this soap (10% sulfur) and they sent it pretty quickly. The sample size is also pretty large and should last a while. I started using it everyday this week and so far so good. Sulfur can be drying but I always moisturize afterwards with a shea butter whip I made (see my notepad). The soap has a pleasing scent, you can hardly smell the sulfur. This is the website: http://www.joesoefskincare.com/ If all continues well, I will probably order some. I'll update in a few weeks. If you haven't tried it, I highly recommend at least e-mailing for the free sample. :) Update 6/3/09: I am still loving this soap. It's a hard soap and will last months. I just wet my hands and then rub the soap on it. Make a good lather and rub it on my face. I'm using this on my back for bacne and it's great. The incessant itch was gone after just one use. I will definitely buy more when I finish this soap. :) Update 7/28/09: No new outbreaks since using this and shea butter as a moisturizer. It has made my facial seborrheic dermatitis non-existent. It has totally cleared up. My son (21yo with face and chest acne) loves it also and we ordered some more bars. I love it. :)
I bought this creme about a year ago and found it extremely hard to spread on. Even though it worked, I just found the texture to be a bit much so I stopped using it after maybe 3 tries. Recently I read that glycerin can be mixed with water. Since this has a heavy glycerin content I decided to try mixing it with water and tried it last night. I squeezed some product in my hand and then added a couple of drops of water and it worked perfectly. Went on with no problems. I also am not thrilled about the smell of the creme. It has a slight coconutty smell but also a stale water smell. I had to wash it off of my hands quick because the smell really bothered me. I'll continue to use it on my feet since it does make them nice and soft.
Lotions/ Creams -La Roche Posay - Hand Repair Cream
Ceci2468 5/14/2009 5:23:00 PM
This product works extremely well. My only problem with it is that I must order it online. I usually get it at skincarerx.com or skinstore.com. It is very moisturizing and lasts pretty much all day. Even if you wash your hands, your hands are still moisturized. Doesn't leave a greasy feeling. Although the tube is small, a little goes a long way. I love this and recommended it to all of my friends and family that I know have dry skin because I know it will work. Great for any skin type and I highly recommend it. Would be super if it were available in stores.
Lotions/ Creams -Burt's Bees - Almond Milk Beeswax Hand Creme
Ceci2468 5/14/2009 5:17:00 PM
This product is awesome. I absolutely love the smell and wish it came in a bottle so I could add it to other products I have. At first I thought the jar was rather small but you don't need a lot of the product to make it work. I absorbs very well and doesn't leave a greasy feel. I ended up buying some for my sister to try because she has dry rough hands and she loves it also. A definite good buy and I highly recommend it. :)
I bought my unrefined shea butter from agbangakarite. It's nice and creamy. I whipped some with jojoba oil, emu oil and grapeseed oil. After I put it in my hair (natural), my hair felt so soft and moisturized without feeling greasy. The whip is nice and fluffy. I use it all over my body including my face just after showering. It absorbs into the skin very well and a little definitely goes a long way and it lasts all day. Best moisturizer I've ever bought, I love this stuff and will never go back to store bought lotions. Update 6/18/09: I had a small burn mark (about 1" X 1/3") on my arm and after using this for a few months, the burn mark is almost gone. BTW, I've had this burn mark for over 20 years.
Gels/Soaps -Dr. Bronner's - dr bronners assorted scented castille soaps
Ceci2468 5/13/2009 9:06:00 PM
I love Dr. Bronner's. I've bought the almond, lavender, rose and peppermint. I mixed the lavender with rose (like the mixed smell better). This stuff is great. I used to have the worst back itch and then I switched to natural products and the itch is almost gone. I dilute it 1:1 and put it in a foam dispenser. It works great. Lathers well and rinses off very quickly. Some say it's drying but I always moisturize my body after showering. I moisturize with a whipped blend I made or 100% unrefined shea butter, jojoba oil and grapeseed oil (great moisturizer for body, face and hair). I've also used it to shampoo my hair and it's so soft and clean afterwards. I also make up my own laundry detergent using borax, washing soda, oxyclean, fels naptha soap and some peppermint Dr. Bronner's (cleans better than store bought laundry detergent and is way cheaper). This product has so many uses. I also clean the bathroom with it. I tried to clean dishes with it but that didn't work out so well. You can also use it for toothpaste (I tried that but wouldn't do this everyday, it's kinda "different"). I will definitely continue buying this product and highly recommend it.
Treatments -Unlisted Brand - MaMa Lotion [DISCONTINUED]
Ceci2468 5/8/2009 1:05:00 PM
I just started using this a few days ago but I'm not sure I'm doing it right. Do you use it as a spot treatment and just apply to the hyperpigmented skin or do you apply it all over your face/neck? I've been just applying it to my chin and a spot on my cheek to see how it works. Stung like crazy but I'm going to keep it up. Update 6/10/09: This is the second time I've tried using this. I really wanted to like this and I really wanted it to work. I had to stop using this. The sting was crazy and the incessant itching was even worse. Maybe I'm allergic to something in it. It also didn't help fade anything. Dried out my face (the parts I put it on). Just didn't work for me at all.
I love this oil. I love making my own lotion. I use this with grapeseed oil and jojoba oil, a little bit of water and lecithin, then I use the handheld blender and whip it for a few minutes. You can also add essential oil if you want. I make enough to last about a month and store it in the refrigerator (will last about a month since it doesn't have preservative). Very good moisturizer for body, face and even hair. Making your own lotion is great. You know exactly what's in it. I recommend it.
Toners -Unlisted Brand - Bragg's Apple Cider Vinegar
Ceci2468 5/4/2009 7:09:00 PM
I've been taking a different brand of apple cider vinegar for about a week now (internally). I take 2 tablespoons in the a.m. and then 2 tablespoons in the p.m. mixed with a little bit of natural apple juice to make it more palatable. It's working wonders. For the first two days, it made me have about 5 bowel movements a day (TMI but may be important to some). I felt an increase in energy and even though it's only been a week, I see a decrease in belly fat (which I wasn't expecting). I used to get daily headaches and I haven't had any since. Also, I have arthritis and the pain's pretty much gone. My complexion's better also, no new zits. Drinking this stuff takes some getting used to but the results are great. I went and bought the Bragg's ACV today and hope to see the same or better results. I also use the ACV for my Aztec's Healing Clay Mask and it works great. ACV is also a great cleaner and I use it with baking soda to clean the bathroom (works great). I highly recommend it. :) Update: 5/20/09, still no new breakouts. I'm still drinking the ACV twice a day. No more arthritis pain, no headaches. I'll definitely keep this up. Update: 7/6/09, had to stop drinking this. It made my period stop (over 2 months late) and I'm still waiting for it to start up again. I really want to take this ACV because it stopped my lower back, legs, arthritis and fybromyalgia pain. I think, once I had my period, I might try again but with only 2 tablespoons a day. Hopefully that will work for me. :(
Masks -Unlisted Brand - Aztec - Indian Healing Clay
Ceci2468 5/3/2009 2:49:00 PM
I bought this stuff at the Vitamin Shoppe for about $7 and it's great. This is my first time using a clay mask. I was so impressed with it that I convinced my 15 year old son to try it (he also has acne) and he loved it also. Cleans out the pores making them appear smaller and makes your skin so smooth and soft. The jar is also pretty big and should last a while. I also love that you have to mix it fresh yourself. I used a teaspoon with some apple cider vinegar and water, mixed then apply. I kept it on for about 30 minutes (until dry) and then washed off. The first time I used it I washed it off in the sink but the second time I used it, I washed it off in the shower which turned out to be a better place to wash it off. Quite simple. I highly recommend it. Update: I used this in my hair and left it in for about 1-1/2 hours (I was watching TV--LOL) and then I rinsed it out in the shower, shampooed with African Black soap and followed with a 50/50 ACV and water rinse. My hair came out so soft. I think I'll do this at least twice a month. Added: I read that lavender essential oil is good for acne-prone skin. So, I mixed 2 drops in my mask and it felt cool. Sort of like menthol. Also, improves the smell (ACV is quite strong smelling). I shall be doing this again. :)
I bought real African Black soap from agbangakarite.com and it's great. It's not in block form but is a soft soap. I just take a piece off (a little goes a long way) and rub it in my palm with a little water. Makes great lather. Then apply it to my face, rub around then rinse. I also use it for hair shampoo. This soap is definitely not oily. I follow the rinse with a little bit of 100% unrefined shea butter which I also bought from agbangakarite. The shea butter is best used in small quantities (a little goes a long way) and rub it in your palm until slightly melted then apply. 100% unrefined shea butter can be used by all skin types because it is non-comedogenic. Makes a great all over the body moisturizer. These products together work great and I highly recommend them. Also, if you do use it (black soap), you need to keep it stored in a container or it will absorb the moisture from the air and get mushy. The piece that I have in the bathroom, I keep in a small Glad plastic container. Update 5/26/09: This soap is still working great. I find that for shampooing it works better if I dilute it in a little bit of water for a few hours to make a liquid soap (see my notepad). Then I just pour it on my head like regular shampoo. I follow with a 50/50 ACV/water rinse and it leaves my hair soft and clean. No more store bought shampoo for me. :)
I love this product. It worked great for my adult acne and black/whiteheads. I use a light moisturizer afterwards. The small tube lasts a very long time. You don't need to use much and it dries quickly. It's also great for razor bumps. Just apply after shaving and no razor bumps. I bought some for my 21 year old son who has mild acne and gets razor bumps easily and it solved his problems. I highly recommend this and I would buy it again. :)
Skincare - Face -La Roche Posay - Thermal Spring Water
Ceci2468 4/26/2009 8:28:00 PM
I love this product. It's so cool and refreshing. Great in the hot Florida weather. Whenever I need a little extra "umph" I just spritz some of this onto my face. I also love using it after I give myself a steam facial. Closes up the pores nicely. Sometimes I need a little moisture and do not want to use a moisturizer so I'll just use this and it does the job. Some say it's only water but whatever it is, it works for me. I recommend this product and I would buy it again. :) Update 7/12/09: I'm still using this everyday. I like to spray my face with it and then apply my shea butter mixture (see my notebook). Moisturizes me all day without feeling oily.
Lotions/ Creams -Unlisted Brand - Agbanga Karite Unrefined Shea Butter
Ceci2468 4/24/2009 5:37:00 PM
I just received my order of shea butter and African black soap today. It is super creamy (no gritty feeling at all) and pure unrefined shea butter. From all of the research, I was expecting it to smell extremely bad but it has a slight smoky smell (not unpleasant). It melts quite easily when you rub it in your palm. I applied it to my legs, arms, breasts and face and it rubs in quite easily. It didn't leave me with a greasy feeling and a little bit goes a long way. I am quite pleased with my purchase and will be purchasing more from this company. Starting this year, I've been only using 100% all natural skin care products and see a remarkable difference. My skin appears more youthful and less dry. I'm planning to incorporate some of this shea butter in to homemade lotions that I make for myself. I'm going to whip some of it (make a whipped shea butter) with some jojoba oil and grapeseed oil (both of which are great for the skin). If my whipped shea butter turns out as well as I'm anticipating it will, then I plan to make a bigger batch and share with family (get them hooked on natural skin care products also). I haven't used the African black soap yet (plan to use it tonight) but I'm anticipating good results. I've done a lot of research on both the unrefined shea butter and African black soap and look forward to using them both on a daily basis. The African black soap is also suppose to be good for acne and excema which both of my kids have so hopefully this will help them also. I highly recommend these products to everyone who wants to have youthful, soft skin and wants to do this by using 100% natural skin care products. Once you try natural products, it will be hard to go back to commerical chemically induced products again. After a shower, while I'm still wet, I like to apply my whipped shea butter all over my body and then pat dry. Keeps me moisturized all day long. Update: I've used the African black soap and absolutely love it. It looks a little weird (sort of looks like poop) but it's great. Lathers real well and cleans my face nicely. You definitely need a moisturizer afterwards. I followed with a small amount of shea butter (use a small amount or it will be too oily) and it works great. I'd definitely buy this again and highly recommend it. Updating the update: 5/20/09 I also use the African black soap in my hair and it really cleans well. I follow it with a 50/50 ACV/water rinse. Then I moisturize with a shea butter/coconut oil whip I put together (see my notepad for the recipe). No more commercial shampoo for me, this is great. More updates: 8/12/09 I'm still using this. It's the best shampoo for me (see my notepad for recipe). It has helped to contol my seborrheic dermatitis on my scalp. Works better than coal tar or salicylic acid. I am very pleased with the results.