Finalllyyyyy - I live in a city with extremely hard water and this doesn't irritate my skin at ALL. My skin is actually soft after using this body wash. Total win!
After 10 weeks of continuous usage, I can see why this product receives such rave reviews. It has been absolutely instrumental in normalizing my hormonal and cystic acne, reducing my blackheads, evening out my skin tone, and reducing my post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation. I started off VERY slowly with the generic tretinoin cream .025% - waited 20 minutes after washing my face (BWC's extra gentle cleansing milk) and moisturizing (CeraVe lotion), applied a dab the size of a grain of rice every third night for 2 weeks. Worked my way up to every other night for another 4 weeks, and have been using it nightly for the last month. AM routine consisted of BWC's cleansing milk, followed by Elta MD's UV clear sunscreen. I did have a mild initial breakout but I used clindamycin phosphate lotion in conjunction which helped keep most breakouts at bay. Peeling was also kept at a minimum due to how slowly I started off. My skin is SO smooth - my forehead is free of bumps which literally has not been the case for the last TEN years. Tretinoin does make my skin slightly oilier, which can be countered by using jojoba oil as a moisturizer instead of lotion. Like other reviewers have mentioned, using tretinoin has allowed me to cut back on the number of skincare products I use. As long as I practice good skincare (removing makeup, using sunscreen, cleansing, etc.), live a healthy lifestyle, and use this product, my skin is kept healthy and happy. Not flawless (I can blame genetics for that), but not severely broken out and ruddy. I'll be using this for life!
Finally! A natural sunscreen that doesn't break me out and doesn't leave me super greasy! I had previously tried Elta's tinted sunscreen with disastrous results - it worsened existing acne and laid the foundation for some heinous future breakouts but I digress...this particular formula, with niacinamide to minimize redness, has been amazing . It's non-irritating, fragrance-free, and wears reasonably well under makeup. It DOES have a slightly grainy finish and can pill, but it's nowhere near as bad as other mineral sunscreens. The most important thing is that it does NOT break me out, nor does it leave any kind of gray or white cast on my face. I'll be repurchasing.
I recently moved to a city with extremely hard water. Sulfate-free shampoos do NOT seem to work in hard water, and my hair got progressively greasier and drier at the same time. Had to switch to a shampoo with sulfates and this does the trick. I still pre-condition with coconut oil, and use an ACV rinse after my shampoo, but this way, I can actually rinse the shampoo out of my hair - even if it takes an eternity. This hasn't transformed my hair but so far so good. It's sufficiently moisturizing and doesn't irritate my scalp. My hair is left shiny and bouncy.
This is a pretty good body wash but I can't say I'm in love. I live in a city with extremely hard water and was looking for a gentle body wash that wouldn't make my skin any drier than it already is. This smells nice, lathers well, and rinses clean but it doesn't make my skin any softer. Perhaps this would work better in a place with softer water?
Dear god, NO. My skin FREAKED out this summer. The worst breakouts I've had since I started getting adult-onset, cystic-type acne in early 2009. I was going through a lot of professional and personal stress and, well, it showed. I read rave reviews on this website, saw the logs on the acne.org, all the testimonials on youtube...I did my research! And this seemed to work for so many people. Not for me! I read through the "what to expect" page on the acne.org website and I anticipated the dryness but I didn't expect it to get as terrible as it did. My face was stinging, burning, and itching for weeks after I stopped using the treatment. I started off with a VERY small amount (less than pea size), and only once every other day...but I couldn't keep this up beyond 2 weeks. I moisturized religiously (with cerave lotion and jojoba oil) and didn't exfoliate as directed but was left with a layer of dead skin that felt like sandpaper. I'm still dealing with the effects of this product, over a month on. IMO, this slows the skin's healing process, delays resolution of PIH, and overall is just damaging to my skin. The good? The one thing I will say is that it did stop a few cysts from forming on my chin. Dead in their tracks. But on the rest of my face, this is an absolute no-go Sad this didn't work :(
Love love love this cleanser! I've been on the hunt for a non-drying foaming cleanser for an eternity and this one is amazing. The company's founder is strongly committed to using safe ingredients in their products - nothing bad in them. This smells yummy, takes off my makeup (but not all of my eye makeup, I always use an oil to remove that), and does not dry me out one bit. Excellent product!
Masks -Makeup Artist's Choice (MUAC) - 25% Mandelic Acid Peel
bludvls849 9/29/2012 2:10:00 AM
I've held off on writing a review for this until I got quite a few uses in, and I have to say, I'm in love. First, the pricing! It absolutely cannot be beat! I always purchase the sample size of the product which lasts me anywhere from 4-6 months depending on how often I use it. I have very clog-prone, acne-prone skin that can get extremely dry depending on the weather and/or acne treatments I'm using. I'm also very prone to hyperpigmentation and uneven skin texture...it's a lot to deal with but this peel is amazing for maintenance. I apply this with a cotton pad and leave on for the recommend amount of time, wash off with soap, and my skin is just SO much calmer the next few days. I get a small amount of flaking, but nothing that can't be combated with a heavy moisturizer. This product is not a miracle worker but it's damn near close! As anyone with acne would know, controlling it requires consistency. This is simply a very, very effective product to keep in one's arsenal to slowly reduce hyperpigmentation, even out the texture of the skin, and speed up the healing of zits.
Like other Joico products, this is a winner! I have coarse, very thick, wavy hair and I've been using the Moisture Recovery Treatment Balm for a few years as my HG conditioner. I tried this out as a sample first - I haven't ever used a protein treatment but the results have been amazing. The biggest difference between using this and my usual conditioner is in my hair's texture. My hair comes out far bouncier and shinier and it feels like butter! Because of how infrequently I use this, I haven't felt the need to use a follow-up conditioner.
Treatments -Unlisted Brand - De La Cruz 10% Sulfur Ointment
bludvls849 8/8/2012 12:50:00 AM
Sulfur is one thing I hadn't tried prior to this week for my acne issues. Background: I have very clog-prone skin with breakouts typically centered around the TOTM. I was (disastrously) experimenting with a milder cleanser for the last 2 months and my skin broke out horribly these past two weeks. The heat wave and my lack of air conditioning have not helped one bit. This cream (applied at night, after cleansing, toning, and moisturizing), dried up some old zits that absolutely nothing took away. It brought an old cystic knot that was festering on my cheek to a head, but the pimple itself went away in 48 hours. The shocking and amazing thing about this product is that it works on blackheads. It hasn't worked so far on some extremely deeply lodged clogs but I don't think anything is going to work on those! The texture is thick and gummy but this really does work.
Treatments -Davines - Oi Oil - Absolute Beautifying Potion
bludvls849 7/17/2012 1:06:00 AM
I got a generous sample of this from a hairstylist to help with my super frizzy, super thick, and super wavy hair. This is the first hairstyling product I've used that actually calms my poofy hair down. This is expensive, but a little bit goes a long way, and it smells really nice! Like powdery jasmine. I wouldn't recommend this for fine hair.
Sigh. I really really wanted to like this. I wanted to use a mineral sunscreen for my acne and clog-prone skin but this is just a no go. While the tint blends easily into my NC40 skin without any sort of cast, this breaks me out. Badly. EDIT: Bumping this up one lippie. With proper cleansing, this doesn't break me out. I can't just use soap for this, I have to double cleanse with oil or with a creamy cleanser to get this off.
I always come back to this soap to use on my body. I wanted a no-frills, fragrance-free product that would clean my skin but also not strip it of moisture. It doesn't come in a beautiful bottle, turns into mush quite easily, nor does it smell great, but it gets the job done for a very low price and my skin is pretty darn happy at the moment!
Moisturizers -Cerave - Facial Moisturizing Lotion - PM
bludvls849 6/22/2012 11:56:00 PM
I really like this. I was using the regular Cerave lotion for a long time prior to discovering this - this is definitely thicker, but like the lotion, sinks in very quickly, doesn't irritate my sensitive skin at all, and doesn't leave any kind of shine. It is slightly expensive for a drugstore product but it works with my extremely reactive skin so I will repurchase.
I have extremely dry hands and feet, even in the hot, humid months, and this works fine as a nighttime hand cream. I haven't tested out in winter, but so far I like it - smells clean, sinks in quickly, doesn't leave a greasy film on my hands (although I really don't mind that - my go-to hand cream is Aquaphor), and gets the job done well enough for the price.