My Acne Story: Trials, Errors, and hopeful for Triumph

This is my background story with acne, how it manifested itself in my life and my journey with it thus far. I hope to use this post and those to come not only as a way to track my results but to hopefully help someone out there in the big black internet space out there.

If I can remember correctly my acne started when I was about 17 or 18, up until then I had perfectly clear skin. It started with a few small cystic pimples on my cheeks here and there for a few years, I wasn’t too pleased but it was manageable for the most part. So for the next few years up until I was about 22 there weren’t any memorable changes in my acne.

That was until I made a small, so I thought, change in my “routine” and switched from taking birth control pills to having the Mirena IUD inserted. Within 3 months, I had the worst acne I have ever had in my entire life. There were cysts and other unsightly blemishes sprouting up on my chin, somewhere I’d never really broke out, all over my cheeks, forehead, just everywhere basically. I just remember being so..disgusted by it I didn’t even want to look in the mirror to do my makeup but of course I always kept it covered in public.

It was pretty horrible to say the least, and this went on for months, just when things seemed like they were getting clear something new would magically appear. I’d started using more natural skin care products and saw it made a small improvement in my skin soon that became a staple part of my routine. Also, around that time I finally decided it was time to make some changes in my lifestyle and eating. I was reading extensively about how diet truly affects your skin and of course many other things in your body and made some immediate changes. I cut out meat, upped my intake of greens, started exercising and tried to be more conscious of my health in general. Things were looking up and my breakouts seemed to not be as frequent or last as long. I remember by the time summer rolled around I was usually just using a bit of concealer to cover up, I thought I was in the clear.

Then winter hit and once the freezing weather hit I was all out of whack in regards to diet and exercise. I got lazy, I ate unhealthily, I went out with friends drinking beer and sugary mixed drinks, I thought I could slip by since things were going so great for my skin already. Well, I was wrong. In no time my face was back to its old tricks and it wasn’t looking pretty. I knew it was time to make changes again, so I took to the drawing board and have made a whole slew of them and am working hard this time around to willpower through it and see some amazing results!

As of late my green smoothies are back as daily supplement and I eat a mostly vegetarian diet. The weathers getting nicer so I’ve forced myself outside to get some fresh air and outdoors activity, natural skin care is still a big part of my routine (I love experimenting with it), and last but not least I’ve eliminated hormonal birth control as a whole. Which, by the way, is a first in 8 years. Not going to lie, I’m a little nervous for the effect that might have on my skin but feel it will be worth it in the long run for my body as a whole. Oh and how could I forget! I also saw a naturopath this past Winter who prescribed me some interesting holistic supplements, gave advice on how to balance my hormones naturally and how to clear up my acne, all of which I can report on in a separate post.

So there you have it. My story on my relationship with acne, romantic isn’t it? Anywho, If you have any tips, tricks, comments or concerns you’d like to share please leave them below I’d love to hear them! :D


 

Share and Enjoy:
  • Google Bookmarks
  • RSS
  • Twitter
  • email

Urban Decay 24/7 Concealer Pencil Review (with swatches)


I’ve been searching for a worth while concealer for quite some time now and I can happily say I think I found one! After scouring the internet for reviews on a high coverage concealer I came across the Urban Decay 24/7 Concealer Pencil and bought it on a whim at a trip to Ulta the following weekend. I’ve been using it everyday to conceal redness and post-acne scars and its been doing a beautiful job at covering them up, which is exactly what I hoped it would do.

A little background on the product..

“Hide dark circles and blemishes with our creamy formula that dries matte and stays put.”, is how Urban Decay describes their creamy concealer pencil.  Because it’s a pencil it’s easy to apply with precision and there are now 5 new shades opposed to only 3  medium/dark colors that were available in 2008 when it was first released (I think it may have been re-formulated too but don’t quote me on that). The concealer is formulated with Vitamin E and a new ingredient called Microsponge that supposedly absorbs extra oil.

 

Urban Decay 24/7 Concealer Pencils: CIA, DEA, FBI, NSA, ATF, DOD, KGB, MI6

Image Credit

Ingredients:
Octyldodecanol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Cyclopentasiloxane, Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Cyclohexasiloxane, Euphorbia Cerifera (Candelilla) Wax, Copernicia Cerifera (Carnauba) Wax, Ozokerite, Methyl Methacrylate/Glycol Dimethacrylate Crosspolymer, Cera Microcristallina (Microcrystalline Wax), Stearalkonium Hectorite, Stearoxy Dimethicone, Propylparaben, Propylene Carbonate, Tocopheryl Acetate

And as always Urban Decay does not test on animals :)

Continue reading

Share and Enjoy:
  • Google Bookmarks
  • RSS
  • Twitter
  • email

Braids and Buns

First things first, Happy March! :) I was hoping to awaken to blue skies and birds singing however, that wasn’t the case. Soon I keep telling myself, soon.

Any who, I have a slight obsession with the effortlessly chic braids and buns(and sometimes a combo of the two) I’ve been seeing everywhere. It seems my own hair never seems to get these looks down quite right (maybe it’s me not my hair?) but I’ve collected a few of the prettiest braids and buns I found across the wonderful website that is Pinterest ( another obsession) and am of course going to share them with you. A little Hair-spo if you will.

 

Messy yet Chic

 photo credit

This is going to take some practice..

Image Credit

 

Fish Tail Braid w/ a Pop of Color

Photo Credit

 

Great second day hairstyle

 Photo Credit

xx,

Mariana

Share and Enjoy:
  • Google Bookmarks
  • RSS
  • Twitter
  • email

Thayers Alcohol Free Rose Petal Witch Hazel Toner Review (and a bit of toner related rambling)

You know that one sweater (or pair of shoes, item of makeup, you get the idea) you keep in your closet telling yourself you’ll get more use of it, and of course, months, maybe even years if you’re like me (..hoarder??), go by and it’s still in the same spot? Well, I’ve really been on a kick of going through all those types of  things and getting rid of what’s stuck around for way too long. As I was going through my beauty cabinet I re-discovered this lovely toner I bought this summer, and to my surprise can’t get enough of it now.

 

*Thayers Alcohol Free Rose Petal Witch Hazel Toner (phew, what a name), now a staple in my face care routine, was formulated over 120 years ago and has only gotten better over time. Made with certified organic witch hazel, aloe vera and natural rose extract it cleanses and moisturizes beautifully! In case you aren’t already aware of the amazing benefits of the aforementioned I’ve provided a quick run down at the bottom of this post.

The full ingredient list in simple terms is as follows:

  • Purified Water
  •  Aloe Leaf Juice
  •  Vegetable Glycerin
  • Natural Rose Fragrance
  •  Un-distilled Witch Hazel Extract,
  • Rose Flower Water
  • Citric Acid
  • Grapefruit Seed Extract,
  • Vitamin E Acetate

It is also alcohol and paraben free :)

Continue reading

Share and Enjoy:
  • Google Bookmarks
  • RSS
  • Twitter
  • email

Desert Essence Gentle Nourishing Organic Cleanser Review

On my ever lasting quest for gorgeous, glowing skin I’ve slowly been traveling down the organic road in regards to both food and beauty products (more on my internal beauty regimen later). It occurred to me that my face and body probably doesn’t need 600 harsh products being slathered all over it and that doing so is probably doing more harm than good. Since this realization, and the horrible bout of acne I was cursed with over the past few months (thanks to my body adjusting a new birth control), I’ve vowed to baby my skin as much as possible . While I still do use quite a few different products on my face daily (one step at a time for this product junkie) I try to be a bit more ingredient conscious before making a purchase.

Now onto the actual product. I was introduced to the Desert Essence line this past summer by my health crazed friend Morghan who raved about their oh-so popular Thoroughly Clean Face Wash made with tea tree oil and geared towards those with oily, acne-prone skin. However I found that it dried the hell out of my skin. Then one day months later while happily shopping the beauty aisles of Whole Foods I came across this bad boy, which as you may have guessed is the Thoroughly Clean Face Wash’s gentler counterpart.

Desert Essence Gentle Nourishing Organic Cleanser for dry and sensitive skin is a ” pure, organic facial cleanser made especially for dry sensitive skin. Formulated with aloe, chamomile and cucumber extracts to leave skin feeling moisturized.” It contains no sulfates, harsh chemicals, dyes or fragrances just organic, vegan goodness.

In simple, normal human terms this gluten free, biodegradable cleanser contains:

  • Organic Apple Juice
  • Organic Coconut Oil
  • Water
  • Potassium Hydroxide
  • Organic Sunflower Seed Oil
  • Organic Sesame Seed Oil
  • Organic Jojoba Seed Oil
  • Organic Sweet Orange Oil
  • Guar Gum
  • Organic Aloe Leaf Juice
  • Organic Chamomilla Recutita (Chamomile) Flower Extract
  • Organic Cucumber Extract
  • Organic Watercress extract
Phew that’s a lot of organic..
Continue reading
Share and Enjoy:
  • Google Bookmarks
  • RSS
  • Twitter
  • email

Clinique Free Gift Set February 2012

I attended a Pre-Sale event a few weeks ago at Boston Store for Clinique. I haven’t really been into too many Clinique’s products as of lately (some of the ingredients they use in their cosmetics puts me off a bit) but I decided I wanted to give their Even Better Dark Spot Corrector another go because I did find that it actually worked quite nicely at evening out my skin tone in the past. I ended up with two impulse buys as well which were the Even Better Makeup and Touch Base for Eyes in Up-Lighting. Both seem to be working out very nicely and I’d like to do a separate review on all 3 products in the future when I get a little more use out of them.

I can’t lie though, I only tend to make purchases from Clinique when they’re including free gifts, and this time was no different. I wasn’t too thrilled with the bonus gift this time around though, I was expecting something with a bit more Spring feel to it, and the bag wasn’t one of their prettiest. But hey, free’s free right?

The bonus gift includes:

  • Take The Day Off Makeup Remover
  • All About Eyes Serum De-Puffing Eye Massage
  • Soft-Pressed Powder Blusher
  • Lash Doubling Mascara
  • Long Last Lipstick : Pink Spice
  • Different Lipstick: A Different Grape
  • Cosmetic Bag

Here’s a little snap shot of the Even Better foundation, Even Better Spot Corrector and the Touch Base for Eyes-though the pic doesn’t really do its pretty taupe color any justice.

 

xx,

Mariana

Share and Enjoy:
  • Google Bookmarks
  • RSS
  • Twitter
  • email

Shellac Manicure in Slate

This past weekend I decided it was time to treat myself/celebrate with my first paycheck from my new job. My hair was in desperate need of some tending to so I called up my stylist and booked an appointment on the first available day she had open. It felt amazing to finally be getting my much needed trim and color touch up!  While she was working her magic I was rambling on about how horrible my nails looked. Eyebrows and nails are just something I really am not the best at keeping up with. Anyways, she suggested I try out her Shellac polishes to compliment my new hair do. Of course I agreed.

 

READ MORE

Continue reading

Share and Enjoy:
  • Google Bookmarks
  • RSS
  • Twitter
  • email

Going Green: OOTD

In a recent post I talked about a pair of mint green pants I just purchased. I felt it was necessary to do a OOTD  with them on because I love them so much. They also give me hope that there really is warmth and sunshine coming in the next few months.

Continue reading

Share and Enjoy:
  • Google Bookmarks
  • RSS
  • Twitter
  • email

Pastels, Pastels, and More Pastels

It’s no secret that pastels are huge for this coming Spring and Summer (if it was, now you know) and while I always felt they reminded me of Easter, I’m totally jumping on the bandwagon for this trend! In fact I just purchased a pair of mint green pants yesterday, and got so many compliments on them while wearing them. It’s safe to say I’m obsessed, and can’t wait to add other pieces into my Spring wardrobe. But before I start raving over how much I love pastels, and can’t wait for Spring  I’ll take this time to post some lovely photos I’ve come across while scouring the web..well Pintrest actually, another new obsession, if you haven’t checked this site out you need to do so!

 

 As you can see mint and coral are a reoccurring trend

xx,

Mariana

 

 

 

 

Share and Enjoy:
  • Google Bookmarks
  • RSS
  • Twitter
  • email

First FOTD!

Happy Friday dolls! :)

So far my blog has been mostly reviews and NOTD’s but I’d like to start venturing out a little to keep up with my resolution (I’ve got a couple other ideas I can’t wait to put into action as well). Here’s a quick FOTD post for you all hope you enjoy and have a lovely weekend!

xx,

Mariana

  Haha that looks so strange with my nose missing..

PRODUCTS USED

Face

Loreal Studio Secrets Anti-Redness Primer

Revlon PhotoReady Concealer (Light Medium)

Revlon Age Defying Concealer (Medium Deep)

Afterglow Organic Mineral Foundation (Beige)

CoverGirl & Olay Simpy Ageless Eye Concealer (215)

Eyes

Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion

Lid: Bobbi Brown Metallic Eye Shadow (Brown Stone)

Lid: Bed Head 4-Play Eyeshadow (Light Purple)

Crease: Bed Head 4-Play Eyeshadow (Dark Purple)

Highlight/Tear duct: Urban Decay Naked Palette (Virgin)

Maybelline Master Drama Eyeliner (Bold Brown)

Over eyeliner: Urban Decay Naked Palette (Darkhorse)

Victoria’s Secret Beauty Rush Mascara (Black-Tastic)

Brows: Maybelline Define-A-Brow (Dark Brown)

Blush/Bronzer

Victoria’s Secret Mineral Bronzing Powder (Wild Thing)

Victoria’s Secret Beauty Rush Radiant Blush (Fresh Love)

Lips

Bobbi Brown Glitter Lip Gloss (Almost Nude)


Share and Enjoy:
  • Google Bookmarks
  • RSS
  • Twitter
  • email

Proudly powered by WordPress
Theme: Esquire by Matthew Buchanan.