Back from M.I.A.

Hi everyone! I know I’ve been off the radar for a while now. Things have been a bit busy lately. I’ve been swamped with my freelance writing lately. I took my library test last week, so now it’s just a waiting game. Hopefully, I passed my exam so that my resume will be sent out to all those libraries. That would be my dream job. I must admit it was much harder than I thought it would be. But the instructor informed me that all I needed was a 60.

It won’t be too long till I post another book review. I’m getting closer to the end of Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.  I’m reading the whole collection in one book, so I’ll review each individual novel separately. I’m going through it slower than I would like. It just isn’t holding my attention too much just yet.

As for my beauty reviews, I’m stilling going through the Body Shop products. At the moment, I’m not too impressed with the results. However, I’m still working on the Vitamin E line and there is still the Aloe Vera line sitting in my bathroom. I ran out of moisturizer though, so I have tried the Aloe Vera moisturizer. Meh.

I have discovered LUSH recently and decided to try their “Grease Lightening” acne fighter because my Terminator Ten acne fighter wasn’t as good as the one that came in the AcneFree set. Wow. I love that Grease Lightening stuff! It really reduced some of my larger zits fast. It is really pricey though. It’s about $15 a bottle. But the nice packaging and promise of handmade natural products have reeled me in. The Aloe Vera moisturizers for the Body Shop are really small, so I have ordered the Imperials moisturizer from LUSH and I can’t wait to try it.

Before I end this entry, I want to give a shout out to http://veganneeds.com/ for nominating me for the Bloggers Recognition Award. Thank you so much! Sorry, I didn’t post it up. I’m a little burned out on typing now. Hopefully, it won’t be too long till the next entry.

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Product Reviews: “Naturally Rosy” Rosewater Toner

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I’ve found it, guys. I’ve finally found the holy grail of toners for me. Gosh, I’ve been searching for years. I’ve heard that rosewater can do wonders for your skin and really brighten it up. I was always very eager to try it out. I just had to get rid of other toners I bought first. I noticed a different in my skin’s tone after the first use!

Here are the benefits of rosewater that is listed on the toner’s Etsy page:

Rose water prevents and or reduces eye puffiness. Rosewater helps to maintain your skin’s pH balance.
It helps fight acne, dermatitis and eczema. Rose water helps to hydrate, revitalize, moisturize, and smooth out the skin. It also helps to heal scars, cuts and wounds. Rose water calms the skin to help ease any stress and anxiety. It helps tone the skin, while offering anti-bacterial properties. The antioxidant properties of rose water help to strengthen skin cells along with regenerating skin tissues. It also helps to revitalize aging skin while keeping fine lines and wrinkle at bay.

Another good thing about this toner is that the other ingredients besides rosewater are not only natural, but they also are very good for your skin. The other ingredients include aloe vera, chamomile, green tea, and raw honey.

The only downside I found is that it’s $10 for a 4 oz. bottle, but you must factor in that you are paying for quality ingredients. I just replaced the normal cap with a cap that squirts, so I can control how much I use. Also, the owner is very accommodating. I asked them if I could pay extra for a bigger bottle, but they don’t have one. However, they said they could keep a look out for a recyclable glass bottle. It never hurts to ask! You can find this toner at the Etsy shop NaturallyRosyRiley and here is a direct link to the toner: https://www.etsy.com/listing/227467494/rosewater-toner?ref=shop_home_active_1

Now, let me catch you up to speed on my natural skincare series. Here’s the parts of the routine we have found.

Extras:

  • Bio Oil for Post Acne Marks: You can purchase this at Walmart or look it up online.

This means that we almost to the end of the natural skincare series. It makes me a little sad, but honestly I’m glad I’m finding the right routine for me. Of course, it will never actually really be the end because I’ll always be trying new products. I’ll actually be searching for organic make-up once I get rid of the stuff I already have.

Product Review: What I Currently Think of the African Black Soap Kit and A Preview of What’s to Come

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Okay, let’s do a product review recap. In the last of my little skincare series, I found the AcneFree system and it worked when it came to clearing up my acne. However, I would soon learn that since this kit is chemical based it does heal my acne, but at a price. My face soon became very red and irritated. So, I reluctantly decided to go back to natural skincare, even though I had no luck before.

I heard a lot of good hype behind African Black Soap, so I bought a kit I found at Target. The kit came with the following items: African Black Soap Face and Body Bar, African Black Soap Facial Wash and Scrub, Facial Mask, and Moisturizer. I haven’t used the moisturizer yet, as I have another one to use up. So, I’ll be reviewing the others and will write about the moisturizer at a later date.

Note: This kit did not come with a toner or acne spot treatment. Not having an acne treatment is one thing, but toning is very important for your face. So, I went ahead and ordered the African Black Soap Toner on Amazon and will be including it in this review.

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Shea Moisture African Black Soap: The one thing I can say for this bar soap is that I found it did keep the acne at bay. However, I wasn’t very impressed with it overall. There is more to skincare than fighting zits. This soap promises a glowing complexion as well and I didn’t get that. I have a bit of redness in my cheeks that I suspect is from a mild case of rosacea. This soap didn’t help with that and honestly didn’t leave my face feeling very fresh. I’m not a big fan of bar soaps to begin with, but I have since moved on and found a face wash I love. I will probably put this bar in body wash only rotation, as not to waste it.

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Shea Moisture African Black Soap Facial Wash and Scrub: I absolutely hated this scrub! It smells like sweetened Play-doh to me. Since this is a scrub it comes with beads and I have used skincare products with beads before. None of the other ones actually hurt my skin. This scrub felt very uncomfortable on my skin and even burned my eyes when I didn’t get any of it in them. I’ll probably be throwing this away.

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Shea Moisture Face Mask: I’ve only used this item once, but I was very impressed with how easy it was to put on and take off. I can’t tell you how many problems I’ve had with face masks just because of the clean up process. I’ll probably use this one up, but I’m not sure if I’ll use it again.

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Shea Moisture African Black Soap Toner: I really love this toner! It made my face feel very fresh and picked up anything that was left behind after the washing. Unfortunately, it probably won’t be a repurchase because of the fact that it is in a spray bottle. It causes me to use up a lot more of it to cover my whole face. Also, I’m very interested in getting a rosewater toner in order to combat dullness.

What’s to Come Next in My Skincare Series

Overall, I wasn’t very impressed with the Shea Moisture African Black Skincare Kit. But I don’t discourage you from trying it. After all, everyone’s skin is different. I did mention on the section on the African Black Soap Bar that I finally found my perfect face wash. I purchased it on Etsy and I’ve been telling my fiance that it is “magic in a bottle.” I’ll be posting a review on that next.

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As for acne spot treatments, I’ve discovered that the only thing that really works for my blemishes is BP acne medications. Well, at least I can go natural with everything else. So, I purchased a stand alone AcneFree product that is not sold with a kit. It’s pretty much the same acne fighter in the kit except that it promises to have some natural ingredients that lessen redness. I haven’t used it yet because I’m still getting rid of the lotion from the kit, but we’ll see how it goes.

I’m also still searching for my perfect toner and moisturizer. I’ll be purchasing a rosewater toner next and I have two moisturizers to try out: the one from the Shea Moisture kit and one with white tea in it. I read that white tea is good for people that have problems with facial redness.

In conclusion, I’ll be reviewing my new permanent face wash next. Now that I have a face wash and know that my acne fears BP, all that’s left to find is a toner and moisturizer. Thank you for joining me in my quest for my natural skincare routine.

Product Review: Acne Free 24 Hour Severe System and a New Challenger Approaches

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If you’ve been following my blog, you’ve heard this before…but….I MIGHT be switching acne products again. If you’ve been following along on all my acne posts, you will know that I did have a success with the AcneFree 24 Hour System. I even purchased the Severe Acne version of it because it had rave reviews and an extra step.

Well, since my review of the regular system, I have noticed a few drawbacks.

  • Like I said before, the system has left behind acne in just one spot.
  • The severity of the medicine leaves my cheeks rather dry, tight, and hot. I started putting on aloe vera gel on my face to combat it, but this fix doesn’t last all day.
  • My fiance noticed it started bleaching my face towels.

At that point, I started thinking what am I putting on my face? Now, take those last two points and intensify them with the severe system…yeah.

I grew tired of my cheeks feeling like the sun, so the fiance and I made a Target run (because I want to switch back to natural skincare and Target has an isle dedicated to it) and I chose: Clear and Balance Problem Skin and Facial System

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I’ve read a lot of good reviews on African Black Soap for acne and I even used the body wash on my back for a while. It worked very good. This kit comes with:

  • African Black Soap Bar
  • African Black Soap Problem Skin Facial Wash and Scrub
  • African Black Soap Problem Skin Moisturizer
  • African Black Soap Problem Skin Facial Mask

I was a little upset that this set didn’t come with the toner. But I found it on Amazon and it was decently priced, so I’ll be adding that to the routine soon. Toning your skin is very important because it maintains your PH levels.

Depending on how this works out, I’ll either:

A. Stay with the new routine

B. Try other nature skin care options

C. Go back to Original AcneFree (don’t really want to)

D. Try the Sensitive Version of AcneFree (It doesn’t have the best reviews)

Hopefully, I’ll find the right formula soon. Thanks for sticking with me guys, it’s not over yet!

Acne Free System Review

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The one benefit to me being out of school is that I’ll have a lot more time to do things that I never had time to do before, like frequently write on my blog! I’m very close to finishing my next book already, so be on the lookout for a new book review coming soon.

Applied for a lot of jobs, but nothing yet. I’m already getting a little anxious and it has only been a week! But that’s just typical me. I understand these things take time. My fiance had been out of work for a month before he found something. I just wish this depression would leave me.

But…that’s not what I’m here to talk about today. You guys are going to be so disappointed in me, but I broke away from my natural skincare hunt. I wasn’t getting the results I wanted and buying all those products on Etsy was pretty cost consuming. So, I broke down and bought a drugstore system. The results were actually quite surprising.

First of all, my skin honestly hasn’t looked this good since I was diagnosed with PCOS. I still have some acne, but it is very minimal to what it was and if I get any cysts, they honestly don’t stand a chance. Even my skin tone has improved.

The drawback is, like I mentioned before, that this stuff is not natural and it does contain BP (Benzoyl Peroxide). However, this stuff is different in that the lotion (the actual medicine) contains Micro-Benzoyl Peroxide. What this means is that only a small bit of Benzoyl Peroxide is released into your skin throughout the day. Thus making it less drying and harsh on your skin. But depending on how your skin reacts, this probably won’t be for everyone and you should always moisturize after using acne products.

Once I run out of the regular 24 hour system, I am going to trying the severe version in order to try and combat the remaining bits of acne. The severe system has a fourth step in addition to the cleanser, toner, and lotion. The fourth step is a retinol complex.

Another thing I found to be very beneficial to my skin is calamine lotion. With all the stress of leaving school, my face became very itchy and soon I had rashes on my cheeks. I got the calamine lotion to soothe my face, but upon further research I discovered that it can also be used for acne troubled skin. So, instead of using the lotion twice a day, I dab some calamine lotion on my face at night with a cotton round. That way my face won’t become too dry from the BP. The calamine lotion is very soothing and refreshing. I do believe it is helping with the acne as well.

AcneFree has been reviewed a lot online and has been compared to Proactiv. I have used Proactiv before and AcneFree not only worked better for me, but it is also a lot more affordable and you can just pick it up at your local drugstore.

I would recommend it if you have tried a lot of options like I did and didn’t see any results. Just remember to give it a little time to work and that everyone’s skin is different and will react differently. This review was written on my own accord and I was not paid by AcneFree.