I'm a big fan of this stuff. I have used BE over the years on and off because I always fall for the hype that it is the best thing to use on skin, but it has never provided good coverage or matched my skin well. I don't know why I kept going back to it, good advertising I guess. Anyways, I went to ulta to buy more BE and saw this, I had never heard of it, never read any reviews, I just friggin bought it and I am really glad. My skin has drastically improved and is breaking out way less, actually it is barely breaking out. This, in conjunction with DDF 5% BP w/tea tree and philosophy's hope in a jar dry skin, have completely changed my skin. I'm talking about years of breakouts, uneveness, and oiliness; not terribly bad just uncomfortable leaving the house without at least concealer. So I use this product because I feel so finished and polished, yet completely natural looking with it on. It also feels like I'm not wearing any makeup. I'm glad I fell for the hype (according to the packaging) with this one, my uneveness without makeup is reduced as are my breakouts and oiliness. I also don't use a primer or any other concealer, just this and a little blush. Good luck!
Treatments -DDF - Benzoyl Peroxide Gel 5% with Tea Tree Oil
nico678 4/14/2012 10:05:00 AM
I've used this for about a month now and nothing has been as effective for my skin in years. I've been scared to write a review thinking I might "jinx" the effectiveness, but I strongly believe in spreading information that may help others. Over the last three years my skin has had stubborn, persistent breakouts with long lasting hyperpigmentation. It hasn't been terrible, just persistent in spite of multiple treatments; over-the-counter and prescription. I was prescribed differin and benzaclin which in combination used to work wonderfully for me but the benzaclin stopped working. I have read all of the reports that 2.5% benzoyl peroxide is just as effective as 10% without the side effects, yeah yeah, but 2.5% for me (again this is anecdotal) was not working. I also get scared of regular use of BP because of dryness (I'm 30 and it can make me look wrinkly). But I was having this awful breakout along my hairline that nothing was helping and going to my derm is a pain. So I started my google searching for some BP product stronger than 2.5% and voila, found this product. Again, at risk of jinxing myself, this product is wonderful. My skin looks better than it has in years, it has helped with the hyperpigmentation, and is controlling oil. I was at the point of blotting my skin all the time and using Dr. brandt pores-no-more to control, but this DDF 5% product has really normalized my skin. I just woke up and looked in the mirror and it keeps improving; I feel younger and look more even everyday. I'm mad I didn't find this sooner. So I still use differin every other night and the ddf 5% every morning and alternate differin nights. I have to use a good moisturizer with BP or I am screwing myself; philosophy's hope in a jar for dry skin in small amounts works outrageously well for me. Hope this continues working and works for anyone who tries it! *I also want to add that about two months ago I started using Pur Minerals makeup and I think this has also contributed to the betterment of my skin. It's honestly the best, lightest, easy-to-use powder I have ever used.
I am using the generic version of this since my insurance, well, you know. Anyways, was on differin gel for years and never ever should have stopped because my skin was relatively flawless and I didn't know it because I wasn't really paying attention to it. Fast forward a few years and I lost my insurance and therefore stopped using differin. Then I struggled with my skin for two years and did a lot of damage with over the counter products (glycolics were too strong and I used them too often). So I buy some insurance, go to the derm, and get back on my old buddy differin but the cream since my skin was a bit dry and damaged (nothing terrible, just like weird cracks and wrinkles in certain spots). So it has been like six months now and my skin is okay. I did breakout in a lot of little bumps all over my face at first and had to incorporate benzaclin for the first few months too but I stopped using that because I hate what bp does to my skin after longterm use. I'm sure if I stuck with the combo I would be breakout free, but bp dries me out to the point of looking kind of old. So anyways, DIFFERIN CREAM! My damage is fixed. Like for real, fixed. My skin is pretty supple and renewed, a bit shiny sometimes but a little powder helps that. I am still breaking a little, but really small breakouts that my own stupid picking exacerbates. Breakouts heal quickly and I old marks have faded. So the cream is definitely greasier than the gel so I have a hard time putting this on my forehead and nose cause I kind of "gunk up" but using a mint julep mask once a week helps. I also gently wash my face with a washcloth at night, a lot of people say don't do that while on retinoids as your skin is already shedding but I get flaky if I don't gently exfoliate often. Anyways, I hope to stay on this sh*t for life this time.
Well I have had a weird experience with drinking mint tea daily. I initially drank it to try and control hormonal acne, which I felt it did control any large breakouts I may have had. Why I have stopped drinking it is because I feel like I am on birth control pills. And I HATE birth control pills. I have gained weight, have increased hunger, am moody, feel swollen all the time, feel tired all the time, etc. I have never done well with BCP. Some people do fine with them, I am not one of those people. So, after two months of consistently drinking this tea, the only comparison I have is the way I feel when on BCP. I eat really healthily; fruits, veggies, whole grains, no meat, no dairy, good supplements... and I am usually really lean. But I am totally curvy right now. Some may like that side effect; bigger boobs, rounder butt; but I don't. I may be the bizarro case that has had this side effect of drinking mint tea, but research shows that is reduces androgens and increases estrogen (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17310494?dopt=AbstractPlus). So if you are sensitive to estrogen (like me apparently), just listen to your body. I even read that people use mint tea for digestive and weight loss reasons so it must be working for people differently than it has worked for me so I won't say "don't drink this", I love natural remedies and believe in healing from the inside out. This works for many, but just be aware if you feel funny like I have that it may be the tea. Buenas suerte..
Skincare - Body -Crabtree & Evelyn - La Source Relaxing Body Lotion
nico678 4/25/2011 5:22:00 PM
I'm a huge fan of the smell of this. Someone else said it perfectly that if you don't like this smell, you won't like the la source line. I use it more as a fragrance than as a moisturizer. I only use it on my arms, chest, and neck. I like clean scents, soap and watery types. I hate too floral, vanilla, or sweet scents. This is a pretty unique scent so def smell it before buying. I too first tried this at a hotel in Paris so maybe it smells bourg-y to me haha.
I am really glad so many people agree about using honey as a face wash. I also want to mention that since none of us seem to be solely promoting a brand, you know these reviews are real and not written by a company to increase averages... Anyways, honey rocks. Someone told me I keep looking younger. It soothes blemishes and seems to heal them well. And it gently exfoliates (I read somewhere it is a natural AHA). I use retinol products and have some dry skin and flaking and honey and moosturizer is all I need to combat it. I use this after removing makeup with either purity made simple or cerave. I dry my skin and apply honey to dry skin and let it sit anywhere from 2-15 minutes. The raw honey is a bit crystallized so I am very gentle when rubbing it in. Before I rinse, I take a small amount of cerave hydrating cleanser and rub all over my face with the honey, it feels a-mazing. I rinse and while my skin is a lil damp I apply moisturizer with a drop of argan oil. I can't even take how much I love using this one my face. I was a bit scared at first since I am acne-prone but I am so glad I gave it a chance. Thanks bees!
Misc Beauty Tools -Unlisted Brand - Zeno Hot Spot Blemish Clearing Device
nico678 4/24/2011 5:17:00 PM
Sometimes this works. Sometimes it doesn't. I have no idea why it reduces some spots and exacerbates others. I have to be careful because lately it has made a few blemishes in their initial stage get really big and hard. So I haven't been able to figure out which spots it is okay for and which to leave alone.
Moisturizers -Neutrogena - Healthy Skin Anti Wrinkle Anti Blemish Cream
nico678 4/19/2011 11:37:00 AM
This is now a staple in my regimen for many reasons. As background, I cannot use harsh acne stuff anymore as I did in teens and early twenties years. It just dries out my skin to the point of wrinkles, discoloration, flakes, etc... Also, I had used differin for years and had nearly perfect skin, all I had to do was wash once a day and apply and not even think about my skin. Then I lost insurance and my skin broke out badly. I have tried millions of things from ulta, sephora, cvs... with little success. Since differin worked so well for me and is a retinoid, I decided perhaps I should try retinol products. I believe Neutrogena is a reliable company, a lot of skin research comes from their labs and their products are rigorously tested for efficacy. I chose this product from their whole line of "healthy skin" products because I wanted the salicylic acid and retinol, but I have read that SA decreases the effectiveness of retinol so I supplement with a more potent retinol every other night (trying poetry in lotion now, loving it so far but too soon to review). This Neutrogena clear skin cream stuff feels amazing going on! It is so moisturizing but not oily or gross at all. I have tried Neutrogena's 3in1 Hydrating acne stuff also, but it is just too drying for my skin, I use it as a spot treatment now. The clear skin cream is awesome though! It hasn't cleared away my acne completely [yet] but I believe it is helping and definitely isn't causing harsh side effects that I feel can be worse than acne itself. I also really like the smell of it. I've been using it for a month but I experiment with too many new products sometimes and haven't given this alone a fair shot. I am simplifying my routine to make this a staple and will definitely update in another month's time. Here's wishing you all the beauty you seek...
So, I have mixed feelings on this one. The problem I had is that I simultaneously started this product along with PTR's BHA/AHA acne gel stuff which I learned is awful for my skin, it dried it out to the point of fine lines along my cheeks. So the retinol fusion never got a proper chance to do its job. The reason I write the review is because I still have it and am not completely opposed to using it, I just have a few things about it that bother me. First, all the research I have done about retinol points to the fact that it must not be exposed to air or it is rendered ineffective and this packaging clearly lets in air and you shake the air around because you have to shake before use. This leads to my second issue which is that I never really felt like this did too much for my skin. Besides the issue with the other product, I used this every night and never had any peeling any anything. It may sound funny that I am bothered by no peeling but for a 1.5 retinol I guess I expected something. It left me thinking it wasn't working. Finally, for me, I hate that it is a serum. I was willing to try it because I read that it was a well liked product but for me it was awkward to put on. Either applying it directly to my face or hands never felt right. I felt like I was losing product between my fingers and was never sure of the right amount to apply or if I had missed any areas. When I did use it, the silicones made my skin look momentarily good when I woke up but as soon as I washed my face it was pretty dull again. It made me not want to wash my face in the morn which led to breakouts by the afternoon. So, as I said this product didn't have a super fair shot for me but I am not too impressed anyways for other reasons. Oh I should say I didn't feel like it led to any breakouts though and I love how simple the ingredient list is, both big pluses in my book. Here's wishing you all radiance and happiness...
LOVE. I am 28 and have struggled with acne for a while. It has been a bitch to get it under control. The worst part is that my breakouts are red and I am a damn picker. I try my best not to... but I mess up when frustrated with my skin. Anyways, this stuff friggin rocks. I use it on any breakout/blemish/scab and it soothes, reduces redness, and for real speeds up healing time. I usually have hyperpigmentation that can last a while and I used this on a freshly messed with pimple and it is healing without a dark red mark. I have had no irritation or additional breakouts from this and I PILE this on. Like a gob on various marks before bed and sometimes I use a thin layer over my whole face. I actually think it reduces blemishes better than the drying cream which tends to not be too effective for a lot of my breakouts. The healing cream's main ingredient is Balsam Peru which is apparently an antiseptic. I can't use benzoyl peroxide, it destroys my complexion and drastically ages me so I need nourishing and soothing stuff. This is prob my number one product I am using now. Not too crazy about it being in a pot but you need so little I don't know how else they could package it. Any pump would just distribute too much. Anyways, I bought this in desperation after messing with a zit on my cheek and it's the best purchase I made in a while. *EDIT* -- Still on the same pot (11/26/11) and still love it. It is just so moisturizing and effective.
I REALLY like this. I've been using it for a couple of months and it has been good to my skin. I had previously been using cetaphil moisturizer and was itching to try this because of the reviews. I also did a bit of research on their website about how this is designed to work with treatments and serums and not affect their effectiveness, rather help them. So, of course I was torn between getting the cream, the am & pm, or the regular ol lotion. I went with the lotion because I figured I didn't need anything as heavy as a cream and the only difference with the am&pm were SPF and niacinamede. While I want SPF and niacinamede, I wanted to test the cerave waters before committing to purchasing two lotions. I bought the lotion and the hydrating cleanser and I really like them! I was a longtime sporadic user of cetaphil products, but I didn't like that the cleanser has sodium laurel sulfate in it. I also wanted to try products with hyaluronic acid in it as I am pretty dry. This stuff has been awesome, absolutely causes no breakouts (I am super cosmetic breakout prone). I put a couple of drops of Josie Maran's argan oil in the moisturizer at night for a boost of hydration. It's kind of no frills stuff, doesn't claim to eliminate wrinkles or cure skin of anything... just cleans and moisturizers well for the other treatments I do use. I believe I will continue to use these products for a while. Good luck to all!
Cleansers -Unlisted Brand - Oil Cleansing Method OCM
nico678 3/30/2011 10:54:00 PM
I'm being WAY hasty in writing this so I will definitely update because I won't usually write a review until I have had adequate time with a product. But I just did this and holy freaken smokes my skin looks better than it maybe ever has. I have no idea if this will break me out or the result subside, etc.. all I know is that I did this in the bath, got out and dried my face, moisturized with some jojoba and argan oil and looked in the mirror and almost cried. My skin has been difficult whether it is breakouts, long lasting cysts, long lasting hyperpigmentation, dehydration from acne treatments, ugh. I really needed something nourishing and effective and all signs seem to point to the OCM. It really did suck the gunk out of the pores on my nose and I haven't seen my skin look so even and plump in ages. I am longing for the day when I can go outside without makeup (for the record, my skin isn't terrible terrible I am just dramatic about it). I thought I might be jinxing the results of this by jumping the gun and writing a review, but I have emotionally suffered from my skin and think that sharing successes with others is important as you all have done for me. I used EVOO, Jojoba, a lil grapeseed oil, and a lil castor oil. I would like to buy some sunflower to use in place of EVOO, but this mixture sure felt AMAZING on my skin. I have also been washing my face in the AM with honey and aloe for a couple of weeks and people have told me I look younger. Anyways, I don't plan on doing this daily as I tend to overdue things and reek havoc on my skin, I'll prob do this 2-3x a week. I will for sure update after month's time. Best of luck to all. EDIT: Okay so I still like this but am a bit weary about it now. I have been playing with different oils and still need to find the proper balance for my skin. I did have a breakout recently but I don't know it this caused it. My skin is oilier after doing this, this may remove plugs but my nose seems to fill up again pretty quickly (gross, sorry). So I sometimes use the mint julep mask on my t-zone after doing the OCM, that seems to help. I will say that I LOVE doing the OCM and having plugs just pop right out into my hands, it's the weirdest feeling. No squeezing, no scrubbing, nothing abrasive, just plop out comes a plug. It gets plugs I didn't know were there and my have potentially turned into something. So I am sporadically doing this when my skin feels a bit congested as an at-home facial.
I really like this. I was using an amazing concealer that I think was breaking my skin out where there were already breakouts hence needing concealer on those spots, it was a vicious cycle. See, I have blemish-prone skin that isn't terrible, but my blemishes are really red and leave marks (esp because I pick like an idiot). So I end up having to cover the actual pimple, the scab I create, and the resulting red mark for a while. I am dumb for realizing this yet still occasionally pick, but I digress... I needed a concealer that actually covers easily (I am not very good with makeup application) AND is beneficial for my skin. This has retinol and B5 something or other, and it really feels good on my skin. It doesn't cover everything but I am trying to accept that it is okay to have imperfect skin and not obsess. Besides, it's probably only imperfect to me because I study my skin closely. Other people are not staring at my skin the way I do. Anyways, try this, I likey.
Treatments -Peter Thomas Roth - AHA/BHA Acne Clearing Gel
nico678 3/14/2011 2:26:00 PM
Oh man, once again had super high hopes for a product to use on my aging-acne skin. But no. Luckily, this product has shown me my unbelievable sensitivity to denatured alcohol (alcohol denat. on ingredient list) so I can avoid it from this point. I always had reasonably tough skin in spite of being prone to acne, but I consistently used this for 3 weeks and my skin became dry, wrinkly, raw, and umm whatever the opposite of plump and healthy is, in addition to still breaking out. If you are not sensitive to alcohol denat like I am, you may love this.
I'm using the CVS version of this, ingredients are the same so I am assuming the formulations are pretty similar. I try EVERYTHING. From the most expensive Sephora stuff to Proactiv to drugstore stuff like this mask. It has been a hell of a year trying to control my adult acne after I lost insurance for my prescription topicals (differin rocks, if you are using it, don't stop ever). So anyways, about this mask; it's awesome. I have breakouts but I also have damage from harsh acne products which made me hesitant to use an oil absorbing mask, but this does wonders for my skin. It really tightens, firms, evens out skin tone, and shrinks blemishes. I like to wash my face, apply it, and rinse as soon as it is all dry. I follow up with Aveda's moisture mask to combat the dryness from this mask. My skin is SO smooth afterward and not just temporarily. I am seeing great progress in the overall condition of my skin. I don't just rely on this though, I have to use other products like AHA/BHA and retinol alternating nights. I use this mask 2-3 times per week. It can make me red and splotchy if my skin is too raw from AHA when I use it or I rinse with too hot water. I have a bad tendency to over-use products on my skin (which leads to over-exfoliation, stupid). This isn't great for me as a spot treatment, not sure why. As an all-over face mask, I say try it if you are considering, you'll only lose a few bucks if you hate it. Oh it might pull out some gunk initially, but that subsides quickly.