Really, really impressed with this. I've been experimenting with my skincare routine a lot in the past couple months, and mostly experimenting first on my chest to see if I get any reaction; if not, using whatever product on my face. After a couple months of mild breakout on my chest, and after using a couple different products on it, I decided a couple weeks ago to just use the Dove Sensitive Skin bar there. Within a week my chest was basically clear, and continues to be so. About a week ago I started using it on my face out of desperation (Purpose was irritating my face and giving me big zits, Cetaphil wasn't cleaning well enough and I had nothing else on hand), and my skin seems to be liking it. Can't comment on whether or not it's clogging my pores yet, but I am leaning towards no - usually it only takes a couple days for clogged pores to begin forming, if they will, and I haven't seen any. I'm cleaning my makeup off with jojoba oil prior to washing with the Dove, just to be sure my makeup is off (I've been putting makeup on my forearms and washing it off with different cleansers to see what is actually getting the makeup off, and most of them leave quite a bit of makeup there, including the Dove, so I thought removing makeup prior to cleansing would be a good idea, and it seems to be working well.) Will update if this changes, but I am VERY happy. About to start experimenting on my chest with DHC's Deep Cleansing Oil (which does remove all the makeup on my forearm), because I ordered some samples before I realized how much I like the Dove. We'll see how that goes...
Misc Beauty Tools -Olay - Professional Pro-X Advanced Cleansing System
lass917 4/4/2012 6:23:00 PM
Be careful not to overdo it with this brush. I used it probably too aggressively for about two weeks last October, and by the end of the two weeks, basically my whole chin, cheeks, and between eyebrows were full of clogged pores (started out with just a few here and there). My skin also was really dry and old looking. Again, however, I think I was really overdoing it with this brush - I used it twice a day and for probably a couple minutes longer than I should have. To add to it, I wasn't moisturizing at all. So, yeah, this brush potentially gave me lots of clogs and dried me out, but I can't say for sure how much was due to the brush and how much was due to just a really poor choice in skincare routine (overwashing, overstripping and not moisturizing). The point is, take it easy with this brush; if your skin seems irritated and/or dry, use it less often or for less time. I think I would have liked it more had I done this, but am scared to try it again because I absolutely loathe clogged pores.
It stuns me that people use this on the face. I like this stuff just fine for my legs or feet, but it's too harsh even for my upper arms. I think I put it on my face a couple times a couple years ago, and I don't remember exactly what happened but I know it felt wrong enough for me to have never used it on my face since. Just goes to show how different things work for different people - I know some people who love this stuff for their faces.
This stuff seems to clean really well, and for that I really wanted to love it... Clean skin seems to be the first step to clear skin, as I did not seem to acquire any new clogged pores while using this (and the very similar Johnson's Head-To-Toe Baby Wash) for a couple months. The entire time I used it I went through a massive breakout, and then when the breakout began to subside, I decided to use something different because I really want to use more environmentally- and skin-friendly products with fewer chemicals. So I began Dr. Bronner's, which kept my skin comparably clean but made it drier and gave me strange irritation bumps. Then I went back to Ceptahil, because it never seemed to irritate my skin. During the Bronner's/Cetaphil stint (about a month in total), I hadn't gotten much inflamed acne, but after a week or two of using Cetaphil, I began to get a couple clogged pores again. I figured it was because Cetaphil doesn't do the best job of cleaning as evidenced by makeup still on the face after using it, and decided to start using Purpose again. After about a week, I was getting really big and painful zits again. Instead of purging mildly over the course of a couple days, a couple clogged pores were becoming big, red, pus-filled and took more than a week to go away. So I decided to stop using it again. This stuff does keep my skin clean, but it was pretty drying which I think might have led to irritation and inflammation. Still trying to figure out what my skin wants to be clear and healthy as it once was...
Skincare - Face -Unlisted Brand - Dickinson's Witch Hazel
lass917 3/29/2012 1:17:00 AM
Prettttttty sure this stuff gave me lots of little itchy bumps. I used it off and on over the past few months, and I remember back in late December after not using it for some time, I began to use it again (with a couple drops of tea tree oil) on my forehead, and I began to get little bumps. After noticing a few days of this, I stopped using it completely for about two to three weeks. I was breaking out BADLY during this whole time, so it was hard to tell what was and was not working, and so I tried this again, thinking it couldn't be witch hazel because I have used things with witch hazel in them before. So I started again, this time applying it to my whole face for around two months (mid January until mid March). My face eventually was pretty itchy very often, and I attributed this to the Johnson and Johnson Baby Wash that I had been using, since I had never used it before. Well, I quit that, used Dr. Bronner's which gave me even more bumps, but still I was using the witch hazel. I finally switched to Cetaphil and a diluted tea tree oil as toner, because I've used this combo in the past with no itchy weirdness, and two weeks later, my itchiness and little bumps subsided to an extent. I decided to use the witch hazel again, just on my forehead this time, and three days later, forehead was again covered in very small itchy bumps. So yeah, I'm surprised because like I said, I have used products containing witch hazel before, but seems this stuff just didn't work well with my skin for whatever reason. I never minded the smell, though.
Cleansers -Cetaphil - Daily Facial Cleanser (Normal to Oily Skin)
lass917 3/19/2012 9:51:00 PM
I've been using this off and on for years. My skin seems to have been at its best whenever I'd used it consistently along with a couple other products. It is one of the only washes I've ever tried to not leave my skin red, irritated and sometimes itchy after showering (this goes for face, neck, and chest). It seems to do a decent job of cleaning without stripping my skin, which I really love. However, it doesn't do the BEST job of cleaning, and so it's important that I use a good toner or something after using this, otherwise I do eventually begin to break out a little. But I really do love how non-irritating it is for me. Oh, and the scent is AWFUL! I can't believe some people like it. I feel like I can taste it and smell it on my breath for a little while after cleansing, which is disgusting because it is so medicinal and gross. I really can't stand it. Still, not too huge a drawback for an otherwise decent product.
Lotions/ Creams -Unlisted Brand - Mountain Ocean - Skin Trip Coconut Lotion
lass917 3/19/2012 6:34:00 PM
Of all products I've ever tried, this is probably my favorite. For over five years this was the ONLY moisturizer I ever put on my face. Recently, I've been experimenting with jojoba oil and hemp seed oil, but I keep coming back to this. It hydrates my skin, gives it a nice glow, smells lovely, and does not clog my pores (I've read that coconut oil can clog pores for some people, and this stuff has coconut oil in it, so it wouldn't hurt to be cautious if you ever find yourself trying this out). My mom has been using this stuff since she was little. She's 50 now, has been a heavy smoker most of her life, but her skin is to die for. She does nothing to it but wash and uses this as a moisturizer. I doubt that I'll ever be without this stuff. And yes, when I wash my face at the end of the day, some twelve hours after applying my Skin Trip, I can still smell the coconut.
I've only used this a handful of times so far, but I think I really like it. I haven't been able to "feel" impurities coming out as others have mentioned, but my normally medium-sized cheek pores look almost nonexistent after I wash it off. It is slightly drying, but it seems everything is drying to my skin these days. One of my favorite things about this is each time I have used it (at night), my inflamed pimples have dried and diminished by next day. I'd been using it after gentle cleansing and sometimes steaming, but I am going to start using it after gently manually exfoliating in the shower with a soft washcloth, to see if using it on exfoliated skin draws out more impurities. I generally don't like to write reviews early on, so I will keep using this and update if necessary, but so far so good. Oh yeah and don't shake too vigorously! I did one time, and the bottle somehow engorged with air and when I opened it green clay flew everywhere.
Treatments -Neutrogena - On the Spot Acne Treatment Vanishing Formula
lass917 3/18/2012 5:41:00 PM
I have used this for as long as I can remember. I use it as a spot treatment and I used to put a thin layer on both my nose and chin every night before bed, because those are my most acne-prone areas, my nose being prone to small red pimples and my chin being prone to bigger zits and cysts. I almost never had breakouts in either place while doing this. I've recently stopped doing it, because I'm trying to let my face be itself without all the crap, and I am getting small breakouts on my chin that I am pretty sure would not be happening if I were using this. I might go back to using it as a preventative, because it has never done me wrong, but for some reason I worry about damage to otherwise healthy skin. All in all, I can't really say anything bad about this. Oh, and as a spot treatment, it's just okay. Once I have a pimple, not much seems to really help it along. This works better for me to prevent getting pimples in the first place.
I haven't tried this topically, but I've been drinking 1 or 2 mugs of green tea per day for about two months now. I had an awful reaction to a product (Paula's Choice BHAs) and was trying everything (except more topicals - I was and still am terrified of them now) to help ease my breakout. I don't know if the green tea itself has a tremendous effect, but drinking green tea in conjunction with drinking about a gallon of water daily, cutting out dairy and sugar, taking some olive leaf extract and raw organic Manuka honey, eating more fruits and vegetables and almost no refined foods, and getting enough rest seems to really have helped my skin, and body in general. I used to have clear skin, but still the way to maintain that was to use salicylic acid products and benzoyl peroxide. If I didn't use my salicylic acid toner and leave-on product and benzoyl peroxide, I would get breakouts. Now, being terrified of topicals since Paula's Choice, I have not been medicating my face at all, just cleansing and moisturizing, and sometimes toning (all free of salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide). My skin is by no means perfect but I am quite proud of it for not breaking out terribly even though I'm not medicating it. I really do think the tea and diet, sleep and general healthy lifestyle are contributing. I realize after writing this that this isn't really an appropriate place for this "review" but acne is the devil and if this can help anyone, then great. I was a little skeptical of the whole natural thing before, but it really does seem to help. Plus it seems that acne, while it has always been in existence, is much more pervasive these days. I am sure it has at least something to do with our disgusting western diets and lifestyles, and probably too all the products we put on our faces. Anyway...
Gels/Soaps -Dr. Bronner's - Baby-Mild Unscented Liquid Soap
lass917 3/16/2012 6:18:00 PM
I've been dealing with acne for a couple months now, and I started using this on my face a couple weeks ago, and on my chest over a month ago. At first, my skin felt really great and extremely clean and soft, but after two weeks of use on my face, I developed lots of really tiny pimples all over my cheeks and forehead. I switched to Cetaphil about a week ago, and those little bumps are subsiding. I kept using it on my chest for over a month, but I saw no improvement there either, so I stopped using it on my body. I have a feeling it had to do with the high pH level (around 9). I used it lightly diluted at first, then diluted it to about 50:50 water:soap, and still no luck. I still will use this as a handwash, and for other general cleaning. I really want to support a company like Dr Bronner's, because they're natural, easy on the environment, and apparently they donate a lot of profit and their lowest paid workers don't make a whole lot less than their highest paid, and so on. I will continue to buy this, just won't use it on my face/acne prone areas.
Toners -Unlisted Brand - Bragg's Apple Cider Vinegar
lass917 3/6/2012 1:28:00 AM
A couple years ago, I was experiencing some pretty bad back acne where I would get a couple really big cysts at a time. After about a year of trying only lazily to get rid of it, I decided I was going to get serious about stopping it. One of the things I tried was apple cider vinegar, as I'd read great things. I swear my skin is freakish and abnormal because it seems to react poorly to things that others rave about: using this gave me a horrid breakout on my back. Where before I'd have maybe 2 or 3 cysts at a time, this gave me like 8 huge ones, and a bunch of smaller others. And the rest of my skin felt disgusting, too; if I recall correctly it was all oily and unhealthy feeling. I used it for probably about a week and then gave it up. (If anyone is interested in knowing, not long after trying this, I switched to Head and Shoulders shampoo, tea tree oil, and Neutrogena's 3-in-1 Hydrating Acne Treatment, which improved my skin almost immediately. Within a couple months, my back was extremely smooth and basically completely clear. I also stopped drinking milk, and I am POSITIVE this has had a tremendous effect on helping my back stay clear: after not drinking milk for a couple months, I decided I would try it again, and my new, clear back began to get a couple gross cysts. I've recently given up dairy completely.)
Skincare - Body -Johnson & Johnson - Head to Toe baby wash
lass917 3/6/2012 1:14:00 AM
I used this for about a month on my face and body, after using Purpose Gentle Cleansing Wash the previous month and a half. I went through a massive, massive breakout during the time I was using Purpose, and while I do not attribute the breakout to the face wash, it certainly didn't seem to do anything to soothe my skin. Anyway, I began using this baby wash because I read it was basically the same thing as Purpose, and it was cheaper. A couple weeks in, I started getting really itchy bumps on my neck, and my face would get random itchy red spots throughout the day. Right before I stopped using it, my forehead was pretty well covered in strange blister-like pimples. It's been about three weeks since I stopped using it, and I still have some itchiness, though less. It didn't clog my pores, nor did I feel it dried out my skin or did any serious damage, but I suspect I am sensitive to one of the ingredients, which seems to be relatively common reading the other reviews.
I have used Spring Valley tea tree oil mainly on my back as needed for a couple years. I love it so so so much. It's very potent - I've found it can cause my skin to dry up severely if I use too much (my back can handle it straight, but my face is much more sensitive and can only handle dilutions). But as long as I use the right amount, it leaves my skin feeling lovely, clean and soft, and it's really great at preventing breakouts. I actually love the smell, too. Oh, and it's great for cold sores too! Dries them up SUPER fast for me.
Treatments -Paula's Choice - Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Gel Exfoliant
lass917 2/20/2012 9:50:00 PM
Used both this and the liquid (which I reviewed as well) a couple months ago for about two months total, all the while suffering what I thought was "purging". Please, people, if your "purge" is anything worse than mild or if it seems to continue to worsen rather than subside, STOP using whatever product. I didn't stop using this, and now I'm still recovering from a breakout so bad that I cannot even believe it happened to me - I used to have pretty perfect skin with regular use of a discontinued Neutrogena BHA product. Replaced it with these and cannot believe the hell I've been through the past couple months. Whiteheads, pustules and cysts galore, pus and blood after the shower, and now left with lots of red marks. Have discontinued PC completely almost two months ago and now am recovering and just hoping that my scars aren't too bad.