Archive for the ‘Exfoliation’ Category

I’m not sure where you live.  But if it’s someplace warm, with the exact perfect amount of humidity to give you the worlds most perfect skin, I just might hate you a teeny tiny bit. Because here winter feels as if it’ll never go away and because of that everyone’s face is chapped and dry.   I’m thinking positive spring thoughts, but in the meantime, I’ve had to give my skin some extra TLC.

Two things that are (or should be) essential to everyone’s beauty regime is a good facial moisturizer and a good mild exfoliant.   Especially in the winter when your skin is flaking more which causes excess build-up.    But the moisturizing means nothing if you’re not getting rid of that excess layer of dead skin on your face.  Plus ladies, it helps keeps your skin looking youthful longer.

So when Nieves contacted me about her hand made natural beauty care line I was definitely interested.  Nieves has 17 years experience in the natural cosmetics industry and seriously, look at her.  Does she look like she’s old enough to have that many years of experience?  Her glowing skin is a testament to her product line.

I had the pleasure of trying out two great products:  The “C” Perfect Skin and the Face Fix Scrub and Mask.

When I first looked at the “C” Perfect Skin I was excited but when I received it, I was a little gun shy about actually trying it because it’s all oils, and my face doesn’t really do well with oils.   In the interest of a review I plugged on and wow, my face felt AH.MA.ZING.  The oil absorbed into my skin quite nicely, not leaving it feeling the least bit heavy or greasy.   I know I shouldn’t have with all the germs, but I couldn’t stop feeling how soft my face was.   “C” Perfect Skin is a mix of organic oils and essential oils, making it a great combination for nourishing any type of skin.

The Face Fix Scrub is another great product.   A mix of clays and natural herbs like Licorice horsetail, chamomile, and rose petal, to name a few.  The dry powder gives a nice mild exfoliating ability or you can also use it as a mask for great skin regeneration properties.   I love a product with multiple uses!  Because it’s mild, it works well with any skin type.   And it has no type of cleaning surfactants to dry out your skin.

Get it: You can order “C” Perfect Skin, Face Fix, or any of Nieves other products, from bynieves.com.   Products are a little more expensive, but did I mention they’re handmade?  They’re oh so worth it.   Use code LOVELYSAFE when you check out for a free gift with any order.

WIN IT

I have, for one lucky person, your very own bottle of “C” Perfect Skin and a bottle of Face Fix.

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Leave a comment after visiting ByNieves.com.  Check out their awesome goods and tell me what you think you’d like the best!

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Giveaway open to US residents only.  One winner will be chosen via Random.org. Entries accepted until midnight EST on March 16th.  Good Luck! :)

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Categories: Exfoliation, Masks, Moisturizer

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Let’s face it, even though we all know that too much sun is bad for us, most of us love the healthy glow of sun kissed skin.  Now, we’ve said it before, you need some sun.  Studies show that in this day and age, we don’t get nearly enough vitamin D, especially in the winter (and sure, supplements help, but one of the main sources is the sun), so when summer rolls around, we like to spend a lot of time outside.  It helps even out my family’s moods, and we all sleep better at night.

I’ll say this, unless you have a history of skin cancer,  or you’re one of those people that burns even if it’s a cloudy day and you’re in your house with long sleeves on, ditch the sunscreen if you’re going to be out for a short while (say an hour).  Opt for a hat to keep the sun out of your eyes, but let the sun do its magic.  I’m not a habitual sunscreen user.  I feel it does more harm than good.   However, if you’re going to be out at the local pool, or a day trip to the beach,  make sure you use a sunscreen of at least a 30SPF, and keep reapplying, per the directions on the bottle.

Now, with that said, I’m guessing a lot of you probably have a nice summer glow going on right about now, don’t you?  And it makes you feel pretty good.  It makes your skin look more even, and toned.  Not to mention, it helps with some other skin disorders, like keratosis pilaris (of which everyone in my family suffers from, sadly), eczema, and psoriasis (my father suffers from it and his dermatologist went against everything he stood for and told him to high tail it to a tanning bed) and others.  But, with being at the beach or the pool on a regular basis, your skin is probably dry.  Especially if you’re a woman and have to shave every day in the summer.

So how do you keep your skin looking smooth like a lotion commercial, without having to dip yourself into a vat of phthalates and petroleum based products?   Here’s my regimen so far this summer:

Aloe Vera Gel: Aloe has great healing properties. It keeps your skin from drying out and also prolongs your tan.  Not to mention it’s really cool and soothing if you happen to get burned.

A good baby/body oil: You can probably easily make your own, but my favorite, that I recommend to everyone, is the Tippy Toes Baby Oil by Mambino Organics.  I love this because it’s very light, and absorbs perfectly.  It’s a simple list of ingredients, and it nourishes my skin.  I added a mixture of a few drops of my favorite essential oils to my bottle and it’s like having my own personalized scent.

I put both of these on immediately after my shower, while my skin is still damp.  It takes me an extra two minutes and my skin has never felt better.  And I actually feel good about showing it off this summer.

(Kathy chiming in here): I love Statia’s tips and totally agree.  I am using a body oil as well as a scrub in the shower to keep the bumps and dryness away all year long. My faves right now are Rocky Mountain Soap Company Bamboo Body Scrub and LuSa Organics Organic Sugar Scrub

You can pick up Aloe Vera Gel (look for preservative free or organic) on Amazon.com or at a local health food store.  Check out Lily Of The Desert Aloe Vera Gel or their Lily of The Desert Aloe 80 Soothing Gel on Amazon.

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Categories: Articles, Exfoliation, Sunscreen

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I can’t believe I just found your site! (considering how long I’ve known about safemama).  Anyhow, I was browsing, but didn’t find anything on anti-aging skincare.  As I’m now in my mid 30’s I’m realizing I need to do more to keep my skin firm and pretty.  I tried samples from the arbonne anti-aging line, but hated the orange/toasted marshmallow smell.  I hear shaklee has an anti-aging line, as well.  Do you have any insight on safer anti-aging skin care lines?  or do you not even think it’s necessary to stick with a “line” of products.  I’ve always had individual favorites, but I feel like my cleanser, eye cream & face cream routine is not doing as much for me as I need it to….. thanks so much for this site!!

Welcome to the darkside, my friend.   You spend your 20’s being careless about your skin and before you know it, 30 starts to creep up and you see a line here and then a line there, and you wonder how you started to age so quickly.   Or you blame it on your kids, because let’s face it, they age you.

I was one of those people that treated my skin absolutely HORRIBLY in my 20’s.  I wish I could go back to my 23 year old self and punch her in the face for all the tanning and not wearing of sunscreen.   And don’t even get me started on the crap I slathered on my face.   And now I’m paying for it by aging quicker than I would like.

Thankfully, there are a lot of things you can do to in the anti-aging department, and a lot of them don’t require slathering products on your face, but for that, we do have a lot of suggestions for safer anti-aging lines.

Tips for slowing down the aging process:

Now, you can’t exactly stop the aging process, obviously.  It’s a part of life.  But you can do things to, shall we say, age gracefully:

  • Hydrate! I know we mention this a lot, don’t we?  And it seems like a no brainer, but hydration has so many benefits, and one of them is helping with those fine lines.  The more hydrated you are, the better elasticity your skin has, and this is something that will take you through life.    Drinking the appropriate amount of water will help plump your skin to minimize the damage already done and of course, keep your skin glowing and looking youthful.   How much water should you drink?   Well, that depends on your weight.   Generally, you want to divide your weight in half and that’s how many ounces you should drink.
  • Exfoliate! Exfoliation is an important process in the anti-aging process.   Your skin sloughs off the dead skin to make way for the new, but sometimes, that doesn’t always happen naturally.   Exfoliating at least once a week (preferably twice, unless your skin is very senstive) with a gentle exfoliant and a washcloth (I’ll get to that in a minute) will help keep wrinkles at bay.
  • Avoid harsh soaps! It’s important to keep your face clean, but you don’t want to use something that’s going to strip your face of it’s natural oils, and then dry it out (which would make you have to exfoliate more often).   I wash twice a day, once in the morning, when I shower and then once before bed.   I would stress the importance of washing more before bed, so that the days “road dirt” and makeup don’t go getting into your pillow, making you at risk for break outs.  Ew.
  • Eat a balanced diet of fresh fruits and veggies! Again, this is another common sense no brainer, but fruits and vegetables have natural properties to help heal and nourish your skin.   Fruits like açaí, blueberries, pomegranate, blackberries, raspberries and cherries to name a few.  All of these fruits have great antioxidant properties.  Try to eat them in their natural form, rather than in juices, which are mostly concentrates.
  • Moisturize! It’s important to also moisturize your face daily.  I try not to mess to much with my skin, especially after abusing it for so long, but in the winter, I definitely need help in the hydration department.
  • Wear Sunscreen! Ok, I’ll admit, this one is particularly tough for me.   I’m in the no sunscreen camp, unless I’m going to be spending all day in the sun, I generally skip it.  However, if you’re proned to skin cancer, or if you live in a particularly sunny climate, you’ll want to at least wear a 15-20 SPF daily.  You want something that will block out harmful rays, but still allow SOME rays through, because sunlight is actually good for you too (vitamin D and all of that).   If you wear mineral makeup, it contains titanium dioxide, which also helps with blocking out the suns rays as well, so don’t go overboard with SPF and mineral makeup.   Again, you do want to expose yourself to some sun.

Brands we love:

As a rule, you don’t have to purchase all from one line and in fact, I find that it’s better to pick and choose.  Find what works for you.  Buy some samples from different lines and then see what you love and buy the full sizes.   Chances are,  you’ll find a line, buy the whole damn thing, and then find end up hating half of it.    Even if you find a few different brands of, say, exfoliant, it’s absolutely ok to rotate them, if you wanted to buy a couple of different  brands.

Exfoliants:

100% Pure sugar scrubAll of 100% Pure’s scrubs are great, but they seem to all have a different consistency based on the flavor.  My personal favorite for facial exfoliation is the chocolate mocha.  It’s got real coffee grounds in it, making it a little more gentle on the face and an added bonus is, should you accidentally get some in your mouth, it’s sweet, so you can get your daily dose of chocolate right there in the shower!

Moody Girl Sugar Scrubs – I love Moody Girl’s product line.  She has great scrubs and bath taffy (bubble bars).   The sugar scrub makes a great exfoliant, but I’d recommend hers maybe once a week as it’s pretty sugary, and it does make my face residually red for about 12 hours after use.  Best before bed, but the ingredients are pretty natural.   Not all of her scents are phthalate free, but she will disclose which ones are if you ask her.

Burts Bees Citrus Facial Scrub – This has been an on and off staple in my life for at least the last ten years or so.  It’s inexpensive and effective.   It exfoliates without drying the skin and doesn’t irritate even my sensitive skin.

Facial Cleansers:

Weleda Iris Cleansing Lotion – This is a good cleanser for those who might get dry flaky skin easily due to anything that lathers.   My skin has a tendency to do that from time to time.  So I use this when my skin is really dry.  It does take some getting used to.   The whole no lather thing throws me for a loop, but my face does feel clean.

Dr. Bronner’s Pure Castille Soap – This is another great staple of mine that works great as a facial cleanser (proof that you don’t have to buy a cleanser specifically for your face).  The only thing is that I’ve had to put it aside for the winter because we’ve had all sorts of dry skin problems here from the weather, but it doesn’t strip my face of the oils and and winter aside, it’s been good to my face.   Plus, it’s inexpensive and readily available just about everywhere.   It also lasts forever.

100% Pure Facial Cleanser – It’s no secret I love this line.  Although, to keep in line with my statement from before, I do try to rotate it with other stuff, because I feel that it works better this way.   This is a great gentle cleanser though.  It’s got lather, but it doesn’t dry.   It makes my skin feel really soft after use.

Moody Girl’s Bath Icing – This is one of my utilitarian products.  I use this for shaving, a sometimes body wash, and also for washing my face.   I was afraid that the lather would dry my face out, but it hasn’t.  It’s decadent without being bad for you.

Moisturizers:

Dr. Hauschka’s Moisturizing Day Cream – This is definitely a higher end  product (I actually have not found a “cheap” moisturizer that has worked on my face and believe me, I’ve tried), but I it worked well for keeping my face hydrated without leaving it feeling greasy.  That is one of my big issues with moisturizers for the face.  It has to be light.

John Master’s Rose and Apricot Antioxidant Day Cream – This is one of Kathy’s staples and favorite picks.  We totally adore John Masters hair products and after trying to cut down on the budget and rotating through different hair products, I’ve switched back to my favorite John Master’s products and I’ll never use anything else again.    Anyway, this is a great moisturizer for everyday use.  It’s light and great for sensitive skin.   Kathy says: “I use during the day..its still really gentle (I look for stuff with no or little citrus for my sensitive skin and rosacea) and has antioxidants to help me fight aging. ”   It’s also supposed to help with age spots (which means I will be running out and buying this cream pronto).   Again, this is a little on the pricey side ($28), but given how much you use on a regular basis, and the quality of the product, it’ll last awhile.  You’ll use less and get more with John Masters.  Trust me.  A bottle of their styling gel has lasted me nine months and I still have some left.

Weleda Almond Intenstive Face Cream – This is another one that Kathy loves.   It’s a little bit thicker of a cream, but absorbs nicely.  This isn’t something you would use everyday.   But rather a good follow up to a facial treatment.   It’s  about $20 for a one ounce tube (whoa) but again, it’s not an everyday lotion.   It’s also available at most Target stores, which is great for the convenient factor.

Sunscreens:

I haven’t found anything sunscreen wise that I’ve been in love with, but Kathy recently did a post about sunscreens, because we get asked this question a lot.

A great site that has a lot of different products to choose from, including anti-aging serums, is Saffron Rouge.  While they do carry a lot of the more expensive lines (and they also have a sample club for about $35 a year, and you get a few new samples a month), they have some affordable stuff.  Don’t be afraid to treat yourself to at least one higher end product if it’s something you really like, and then mix it in with more affordable skin care.  You don’t have to drop a mint to keep your skin looking healthy.  In fact, you can easily make an exfoliator yourself out of brown sugar, almond oil and a little bit of essential oil.  It lasts for about six months and works just as well as a store bought product (I made some for my son whose arms have been like alligator skin this winter and it worked well to get the leather off).

So there you have it.   You don’t need to load up on anti-aging products, one or two might suffice, but rather, take the preventative measures with stuff that you already have and make them count.   Try to find samples of products to try out so that you’re not out of a lot of money if you don’t like it.


100percentpineappleI know I need to shut up about 100 Percent Pure products, but they’re quickly becoming favorites of mine.   And when I find something I love, my loved ones want to stage an intervention.   But this is for a good cause.  For research, and for living a healthier life.  Yes, that’s it.

I’ve been wanting to try some sort of mask that I can use weekly to help keep the dry flaky skin to a dull (or maybe more like a healthy glow) roar.   So I picked up some of the 100% Pure Pineapple mask.  I was surprised that it was a powder.  One extra step of mixing it with water will make me lazy, but I mixed some up per the directions and slathered  it on my face and waited.  It doesn’t smell that great, and when it tries, it’s hard to crack, so your face looks like a 90 year old’s.   It washes off really easily with some soap and water.

But I will say, it made my skin soft as anything and I had no dry skin afterwards.  I haven’t felt skin that smooth since I was in grade school.   I was pretty impressed.  I used it a second time a week later, and the results weren’t as good, but they were still far better than nothing at all.  The jar will last awhile and if it keeps the flaky skin to a minimum, I give it a thumbs up.

Get It: You can order the pineapple mask via our Amazon Affiliate store, or buy their products directly online.   OR you can find some of their products in Bath and Body Works flagship stores.

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