Treatments -Peter Thomas Roth - Acne Spot and Area Treatment
lethlie 11/4/2012 12:06:00 AM
Summary: I like it enough to call it my favorite out of all spot treatments I've tried. But I don't love it enough to call it a godsend. Currently on my 2nd bottle of the PTR Acne Spot and Area Treatment. It's one of my favorite spot treatments and did wonders for my skin a few months back. It did have a hand in helping me the clearest skin I've had since high school. Only reason that I took one lipstick ("lippie"?) off is due to the fact that I don't love it as much as I did (since it's no as effective as it used to be). My skin's been on a clearer path up until 2-3 months ago when my jawline and neck broke out into terrible cystic acne (which has never happened before). I've had a few cystic spots here and there, but not an all-out attack such as this. I didn't read the other reviews before I wrote mine so I don't write this with some bias (I bought this on a recommendation from a Sephora SA in place of the DDF 5% Benzoyl Peroxide Gel). Okay, now to just get down to it: a pro-con list of this product on my skin CURRENTLY (as opposed to how I loved it before). Cons: 1. Did not completely clear blemishes over night, especially the larger annoyances. A deal-breaker for a lot of people and main reason why I can't love it. 2. The smell. It's 5% colloidal sulfur and you can damn well smell it. 3. Comes in an opaque, white, plastic pump dispenser. You can't see how much product you have left. And residual product in the pump will dry up and make later applications a little more difficult. And now onto the reason why I will repurchase this again (pros): 1. It does help with REDUCING the size/swelling of acne. It can even clear up the smaller/smallest of spots on my face the night before. 2. It doesn't try out my skin like other acne spot treatments (and acne-targeted products). 3. The ingredients may have some part in helping 1 and 2. They, most of them at least, are winners to me: For acne/exfoliation: sulfur, salicylic acid, and glycolic acid To help calm/soothe: Aloe vera To help fade dark spots: glycolic acid, Licorice root, and grape seed Other great ingredients: various other extracts like orange and willow, and vitamins E + B5 4. Did I mention that it was the most effective out of all spot treatments I've tried without completely drying out my skin? Yeah. That's a big one for me. I hope this helps at least one person out there.
Toners -Liz Earle - Liz Earle Instant Boost skin tonic
lethlie 11/3/2012 11:41:00 PM
I'm on my 4th bottle and have 2 more on backup. I don't even know here to begin about this toner. Of course, a toner isn't necessary. But with my insanely oily, immensely sensitive, and bleh-ly acne-prone skin, I need it to calm down and replenish my skin after my thorough cleanse (morning and/or evening). This was the very first non-acne-targeting toner that I purchased and tried. All on a whim. Before this, I've tried two Clinique ones, Khiel's Rare Earth toner, and Proactiv's toner. All of them had some sort of clarifying/purifying (read: "drying") properties... especially with all the alcohol. This one on the other hand, with a lot of great ingredients (aloe, cucumber, calendula, and chamomile) near the top (and being most concentrated) of the list, clearly calmed and hydrated my skin after I cleansed. It also removed some remaining dirt and dead skin cells that cleansing just didn't budge. I can't say much for its astringent qualities; but I don't have much need for astringency in toners. Warning for those with sensitive skin, this does contain fragrance, and can be strong to those especially sensitive to fragrance. I personally don't mind and actually enjoy the fresh scent of it (think light floral baby powder). Packaging-wise, it's... interesting. It's all in a plastic, pale teal bottle. It's a cap that you twist, pushing and opening up the nozzle on the very top. Whether or not that's hygienic enough is up to you. I don't mind, but could definitely do with other dispensing options. All in all, it's my go-to toner. I'm currently using the Clarins Toning Lotion with Iris on strictly bad breakout days in the morning. But I do find a way to squeeze in the Liz Earle Skin Tonic daily.
WARNING: Long review. SUMMARY: The some of the ingredients were just too much for my skin and clogged it all up. WHY, skin, WHY? I wanted to love this product so much because of such glowing reviews from the likes of Lisa Eldridge. So after much deliberating, I added it to my Escentual.com basket during their French skincare sale. Once I got it, I immediately used it the next morning to help clear up the remaining (and already disappearing) spots under my makeup. That night, I found that not only did those spots come back full force, my skin broke out with tiny new ones around those spots. I thought it was part of the whole "purge" process (I don't buy into it... but that goes to show you much I wanted this to work out). And then I looked at the ingredients list--REALLY looked at it--and googled each ingredient (links included): 1. ISONONYL ISONONANOATE : an emollient that helps condition the skin. It's known to be 100% safe. But there are studies that show that it is possibly comedogenic that can worsen acne. Strike one. http://www.truthinaging.com/ingredients/isononyl-isononanoate (there's also a forum post about how products actually do comedogenicity tests. 2. PROPYLENE GLYCOL: Strike two. http://thegoodhuman.com/2009/03/31/what-is-propylene-glycol-and-why-you-should-avoid-it/ 3. DIMETHICONE: a type of silicone. It's not entirely bad and does work for some people. It also can cause a lot of irritation for those who are sensitive/acne-prone (strike 3): http://www.christopherdrummond.com/cdbblog/2010/12/23/dimethicone-and-other-bad-ingredients-for-acne-pronesensitive-skin/ I'm not going to list the rest of the ingredients since those three (and sadly, the top three in the product) are just some of the main suspects behind why this didn't work for me. I'm not hating on this product. It DOES work for a lot of people. Just be very, very careful of what you put on your skin, especially if you're sensitive and/or acne-prone. I hope this helps.
I got this as part of the Three Little Wonders trio. I loved all three in the little packet, but when I changed up my routine a little and separated the Truth Serum from the rest, using it with my other products, I definitely saw results. My skin was amazingly supple and my dark spots were lighter. Overall, my skin seemed very happy that I added this into my routine. Now the reason why it's a 4 instead of a 5 rating: it stopped working. After I used up my little bottle, I went out to Sephora and dropped the insane amount of money on the larger bottle (that's how much I loved it). And after a few weeks using up the larger bottle... I just stopped seeing the results. I haven't changed anything from my skin routine other than buying the larger one and only started seeing further improvement when I removed this from my regimen. I was devastated. After searching for a while for that perfect skin serum, I thought I'd found it... only to find that my skin plateaued with it. I'm not fully disappointed with the product since I KNOW that it did help initially. I would repurchase it again if after staying away from it means that it'll help my skin again.
Treatments (Eye) -BeneFit Cosmetics - It's Potent!
lethlie 10/14/2012 6:08:00 AM
WHY did I not save the receipt for this? It's a glorified eye cream that did nothing for my dark under-eye circles and morning puffiness. I'm almost done with it (no other choice since I can't return it now)... and all it's really helped me with is... moisturizing my eye area. I'm going back to the Khiel's avocado eye cream that doesn't promise anything else other an moisture. It may not promise what this Benefit cream promised, but it sure moisturized my eyes a lot better.
BB Cream -Dr. Jart+ - Water Fuse Beauty Balm SPF 25 PA++
lethlie 10/14/2012 6:03:00 AM
I hate to give this a lower rating than the average, but I can't be anything else but honest when it comes to beauty products. This was my first BB Cream, recommended by a SA at Sephora. To be fair to her, this was one of the first BB Creams that was launched at Sephora, and probably suited my oily, acne-prone skin a lot better than the rest. All in all, it's not BAD. If I need the coverage/sun protection during a hike or workout session, I'll grab this right away. It gives okay coverage and great sun protection in one product. But it's not great. After having this for... 11 months(?), I'm just not at all impressed with the finished quality even though it's a convenient product to have. It applies way too light onto my already light (yellow-toned) skin. Granted, it blends better after a few minutes, but still... a little too light/pale for my tastes. And for the convenience of the product, I found that using my fingers to apply it just didn't help at all. It comes out a thick, mousse-y consistency from the tube, but applies very sheer/watery when applied with my fingers. The pigment also managed to cling to the dry/flaky areas of my face where I'd taken off any remaining acne medication. So application for me requires a brush... not exactly convenient. And with the changing seasons, this doesn't at all agree with my skin. During the summer, it can be a little too moisturizing (leading to small, spread out pimples on my cheek). With Los Angeles' current transition into colder weathers, I find that it just completely dries out on my problem areas. There's just no consistency with its results. So my patience with a supposedly all-in-one product is wearing thin. As I said, it's not a bad product... but it's definitely not great. There are other lighter-than-foundation options out there that I've tried and have gotten along with a lot better.
Skincare - Face -Liz Earle - Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish
lethlie 10/14/2012 5:51:00 AM
I do like this cleanser a lot. But be forewarned, I don't use this as my primary cleanser. It's place in my beauty regimen is more of a makeup remover/pore-opener. Other makeup removers usually take too long to use, are too harsh, or are too oily for my skin. Using this hot cloth cleanser by Liz Earle is the perfect 1st cleanse before I go in with my Ren clay cleanser. Sounds a bit excessive, I know. But it's honestly done wonders for my sensitive, acne-prone skin. I would love to use it as my primary cleanser, but my skin is just way too oily and too acne-prone to go with this alone. It's very gentle upon application and feels slightly luxurious while I'm massaging all the oil, dirt, and makeup away. It's even gentle enough to gently smooth over my eyes to remove eye makeup. Following it up with a muslin cloth under hot water (making the cloth WARM--NOT HOT) is a great approach to daily exfoliation. I'm already looking into other gentle cream cleansers (Pai, I've got my eyes on you!) since this has just made my skin very, very happy. No more forehead/nose/cheek/chin breakouts for me! I can't recommend anything regarding this cleanser since everyone's skin is very, very different. I just hope that my experience helps some of you.
Cleansers -Ren - ClearCalm Anti-Blemish Clay Cleanser
lethlie 10/14/2012 5:40:00 AM
WARNING: Long review. Summary: LOVE this cleanser. With the help of this cleanser and a combo of super gentle products, my skin's finally gotten a break from acne that's transitioned from teen- to adult-acne. For starters, I absolutely love this product. I purchased it on a whim after getting absolutely tired of the ineffective ProActiv system and the overly drying (but still effective) Khiel's Rare Earth Cleanser. I've seen the brand before but didn't know anyone who used ANYTHING from it. But I am absolutely happy that I bought it. It was the most gentle acne-targeted cleanser I've ever bought (and I haven't bought many high-end ones since I am terribly afraid of the over-drying effect). It doesn't leave my skin tight (any tightness I may experience would be from the tap water I use and the fact that it's usually my 2nd cleanser). I use this after I remove my makeup with the Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser and follow it with the Liz Earle Instant Boost Tonic. My change to this Ren cleanser in addition to the Liz Earle toner have granted me the clearest skin I've ever had since high school. Seriously. Granted, I was sick for 2 weeks, never had to wear any makeup, and used other products after. But this combo definitely helped make my skin look its absolute best in the longest time. You get a very generous amount of product in the bottle. My first bottle (currently on my 2nd and have a 3rd for backup--that's how much I love it) lasted me 6 months. The packaging is a little difficult to work with. I appreciate the pump, but it does tend to get some product stuck inside, which dries and makes the next application a little hard. But it's nothing bad. Also, when you're trying to squeeze out the very last bits out, the natural vacuum system that the inner "bag" creates in the bottle isn't at all helpful. Overall, I'm in love with this cleanser and am saddened to think of my skin getting used to it. I am currently looking for another cleanser that pleases me as much as this one... just so I have a variety to work it.