Finally: Sunscreen I Actually Want To Use

Skincare

And the church said, Amen.

 

Much dance fun silly clean GIF

 

Let. Me. Tell. You. The bane of my existence has been finding a sunscreen that doesn’t make me look like a ghost. As children, my brother and I hated when my mum would pull out that god awful long tube of Avon or Banana Boat; she did not play with the UV Rays (still doesn’t).  To this day I still have flashbacks of coming to the surface in a swimming pool after being under water and having that god awful white film/residue from the sunscreen just drip all over. Everything was unbearable to touch, the skin was overly sticky, and why did I look purple? UGH. When I was old enough to have a say, I boycotted sunscreen at age 14 and never returned back. At that point I’d rather die of radiation burns than be in public looking like a vampire and feeling like whole scoops of grease in the sun. Around age 20, I started to close out that temper-tantrum and began using makeup with a low SPF and for the last 2-3 years I’ve really started to understand the importance of sunscreen as an anti-aging product and the detrimental effects of even cloudy day radiation. I recently stumbled upon a game changer for everyone who hates applying sunscreen and well, I have to share.

COOLA

I fear anything that says “SPF”. Honestly, truly. Additionally, having combination/oily/acne prone/sensitive skin- (eyeroll) I am very particular about the amount of layers/products I use, because the last thing I need is an oil slick at 12pm on my T-zone. COOLA is a game changer. I have never in my life met a sunscreen I didn’t want to throw in the trash. This formula is extremely lightweight, non-irritating, and free of those crazy annoying Walter White chemicals that I feel most sunscreens have in their ingredient list. This product really absorbs into the skin making makeup application a dream.  Since the key to sunscreen is reapplying, COOLA makes this possible and achievable without making you look like a clown. This is going to come in hand especially during the fall for tail gates and winter festivals. It’s a sunscreen that transcends season. 

Unboxing Experience: A white matte tube, sealed for protection prior to use. The brand promotes a very beachy clean vibe with teal and white color scheme. Easy to transport in your bag, on the beach, outdoor activities, and wherever you need application. I Literally said out loud: where the hell have you been?

Effectiveness: Yall. This is the best sunscreen I have ever experienced in my life. Bar None. These are the moments when I really just pat myself on the back for researching brands that I can then write and share because it is a struggle as a woman of color and someone with oily-hormonal-skin, to find a weightless sunscreen that doesn’t make me breakout, or look ridiculous after 1 hour. You get to a point where you’d rather get sun burn than deal with another layer of artificial oil, because most sunscreen brands just don’t love us– but COOLA loves us.

Cost To Use Ratio: I’d pay this plus half. Out the box I sampled the product on my hand and instantly realized I had stumbled upon something godly.  I was worried about the cucumber scent, which I’m not a fan of, but it is mild and faint.  I prefer unscented face products, but this goes away fast and it’s a very small price to pay.  I’m going to be honest with you, I was looking for reasons to not like this product (read: my sunscreen PTSD), but I couldn’t find one. If you have ever, ever, had any issues grabbing a suitable sunscreen, be sure to try out COOLA and let me know what you think. Thank me later. 

+Many thanks to COOLA for their support in this blog. This is not a sponsored post + products were provided for editorial consideration. All opinions and thoughts about the businesses featured are my own. I stay true to your weekly followup + my aesthetic. 

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How To: Build A Skincare Routine

Skincare

DETERMINE YOUR SKIN TYPE

Before you create your skincare routine, it’s important to determine your skin type. The products you select are determined on the way your skin functions throughout different points of the day. You skin type comes with a set of needs that your routine needs to reflect both in the day and night time. Once you become more comfortable with your am and pm essentials, you’ll be able to freestyle your products, since you become more mindful of the changes your skin makes throughout the seasons. So before we get to the basic, start here: and determine your skin type

definitions

Cleanser

This can be a cleanser or a face wash depending on the product of need. Both cleansers & face-washes clean your face, however, a face wash is a foaming cleanser while a cleansing lotion/cleansing milk (or simply called “cleanser”) is generally non-foaming as the main foaming ingredient: sodium lauryl sulfate, which is known to be a common skin irritant.

Toner

A toner looks like water and acts like water, but it’s packed with so much more. Depending on the toner, it also can contain acids, glycerin, antioxidants, and anti-inflammatories. A toner is NOT an astringent- which is what we’ve all been led to believe. They serve different purposes and are created with different ingredients.  Toners help to draw water into the skin, soothe, and protect the skin barrier pH levels. Toners are IMO one of my non-negotiables for my daily routine. They help prime the skin for moisturizer and serum and allow each to penetrate deep into the skin. During my morning routine they help sweep away any excess left over from the previous night products and at night time, help remove any excess makeup that wasn’t cleared off from the cleanser. An astringent is designed to remove excess oil from the face, but end up drying out the skin and cause more problems as they reduce the acidity on you skin and disrupt the pH balance. 6 Reasons You Should Add Toner To Your Beauty Routine.

Moisturizer

Moisturizers or emollients are complex mixtures of chemical agents specially designed to make the external layers of the skin softer and more pliable. They increase the skin’s hydration by reducing evaporation. Why it’s important? Your moisturizer sits on your skin the longest! It helps to protect and enhance your skin barrier providing overall even and healthy skin. Read: The benefits of moisturizer.

serum

Serum is a skincare product you can apply to your skin after cleansing but before moisturizing with the intent of delivering powerful ingredients directly into the skin. Serum is made up of smaller molecules that can penetrate deeply into the skin and deliver a very high concentration of active ingredients. They are great in your advanced skin routine to target specific concerns or boost certain deficiencies. 5 Reasons To Add Serum To Your Routine

exfoliant

Exfoliation is a type of skin therapy that involves removing the outer layer of dead cells by an abrasive material and/or chemical product. Removing dead skin cells via exfoliation rejuvenates your skin and helps to prevent pimples and blackheads, which develop when pores and sebaceous glands become clogged. Exfoliator 101.

Essential Routine:

MORNING

Cleanser > Toner > Moisturizer

EVENING

Cleanser > Exfoliator> ToneR> Moisturizer

Advanced Routine

If you’re concerned with signs of aging, large pores, uneven skin tone, redness, or breakouts, an Advanced Routine is your best bet. It includes targeted solutions and/or boosters that build on the foundation of the Essential Routine to address your personal skincare concerns while being compatible with the needs of your skin type. With any targeted solution or booster product, apply in order of thinnest to thickest texture, always before sunscreen.

MORNING

Cleanser> Exfoliator> ToneR> Serum> Moisturizer

EVENING

CLEANSER- BALM> Cleanser- FOAM> Exfoliator> ToneR> MASK> Serum> Moisturizer

So now that you know the basic players. Let’s explore a few products to get started. I wanted to select a brand that was easily attainable, effective, and whose products can be expanded upon over time. While you do not need to build a skincare routine of all the same products, Bioderma is a fantastic line to do just that and keep things simple. When you’re feeling a bit more comfortable, feel free to freestyle. For instance, no matter how ever changing my skincare routine gets, I find myself consistently purchasing the Bioderma Hydrabio micellar water to help take my makeup off, and the Hydrabio Brume is my favorite face mist on the market. @biodermafrance is a unisex, simple, high performing line that won’t strain the coinT & get you to the glow. Let’s jump in to their top 5 products. I took about 3 months testing these products out before writing this review to see how the products would interact with combination/oily/sensitive skin.

Bioderma is primarily split into three main lines: green (sebium), pink (Sensibio) and blue (hydrabio). Sensibio is for sensitive skin – (pink cap), Hydrabio is for dehydrated sensitive skin (blue cap), and Sebium is for combination/oily – (green cap).

Because I use a variety of serums and treatments to target my combination/oily skin and oil management. I chose the Hydrabio line, as it is designed for  those that have sensitivity but also need hydration– which if I’ve learned anything about managing combination skin- the goal is not to remove all of your oil but balance it. It works effectively in balancing the skin without my skin ever feeling dry or tight afterwards. Let’s break down a few products to give you an essential routine:

Bioderma Hydrabio H2O Cleanser gently removes makeup and dirt from your face without the use of harsh detergents. There’s a reason why this has a cult following. Designed to easily alleviate dryness and dehydration; the micellar water is infused with fatty acid esters and fruit extracts that tone, cleanse and protect the skin’s outermost layer.

Bioderma Hydrabio H2O Ingredients
Aqua, Glycerin, PEG-6 Caprylic/Capric Glycerides, Polysorbate 20, Mannitol, Xylitol, Rhamnose, Fructooligosaccharides, Niacinamide, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Propylene Glycol, Hexyldecanol, Disodium EDTA, Sodium Hydroxide, Citric Acid, Cetrimonium Bromide, Fragrance.

Bioderma Sebium H2O Ingredients
Aqua, PEG-6 Caprylic/Capric Glycerides, Sodium Citrate, Zinc Gluconate, Copper Sulfate, Gingko Biloba Leaf Extract, Mannitol, Xylitol, Rhamnose, Fructooligosaccharides, Propylene Glycol, Citric Acid, Disodium EDTA, Cetrimonium Bromide, Fragrance.

Bioderma Sensibio H2O Ingredients
Aqua, PEG-6 Caprylic/Capric Glycerides, Fructooligosaccharides, Mannitol, Xylitol, Rhamnose, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Propylene Glycol, Cetrimonium Bromide, Disodium EDTA.

Hydrabio Moisturizing Mask is a nourishing face mask that activates a natural restorative process in fighting environment/climate driven disruptions to the face and skin. This mask is like a drink of water for your face; To apply: leave on for 10 minutes then remove any excess product with a cotton pad.

Bioderma Brume Soothing Booster; I am slightly obsessed with this face mist. The Bioderma Brume helps to alleviate irritations on the skin IE: (after hair removal, razor’s use, sunburns, after dermatological or aesthetic actions) and redness. Safe to use multiple times a day as a refresher, a make-up setter, or works effectively in removing the residual of a mask.  The fine mist is balanced in minerals and trace elements and enriched in soothing ingredients. This would be a great AM step 2 toner to prepare the skin for your serum and moisturizer- also a nice face treat for waking up and adulting. 

Hydrabio Serum is formulated with nourishing niacinamide, this face serum works to gently alleviate dryness and dehydration. Use after cleansing prior to moisturizer! This is a wonderful multitasking serum that works great on combination skin as it absorbs quickly. I find that this product leaves the skin very plump and taut, especially nice in the morning before primer making makeup application effortless. 

Hydrabio Gel Moisturizer is a daily face moisturizer that deeply hydrates and boosts a healthy skincare barrier. Also includes a niacinamide and salicylic acid formula, to gently work below the surface to alleviate dryness. This moisturizer rivals many expensive potions I have on my nightstand. Over time it has significantly helped decrease closed comedones and mild adult acne. Additionally, the consistency of the gel moisturizer is slightly weighted, cooling, and has little to no fragrance. When smoothed on the skin, has a very light feel with an immediate surge of moisture surge to the skin. Moisturizer is the one product that is on your face 24 hours a day, so you want to make sure it’s simple, effective, and high performing.

Our skin is not the same everyday and understanding its needs and creating a tailored skincare regime is fundamental. I encourage that you take mindful moments for yourself as you start and end your day, and it is my hope you can use Bioderma as an anchor after reading.  Products available for purchase here in the U.S. at Beautylish.co or on Bioderma’s official website: www.Bioderma.us. Feel free to expand and organize your products in the variety of ways that will serve you best. Be sure to let me know down below what your current routine is and what you’d be looking to change up. 

SHOP BIODERMA ESSENTIALS

+Many thanks to Bioderma for their support in this blog. This is not a sponsored post + products were provided for editorial consideration. These are not affiliated links, I do not receive compensation for product selection. All opinions and thoughts about the businesses featured are my own. I stay true to your weekly followup.

Imported: Lapothicell Skincare

Skincare
 L to R: Tone Up Serum, AC Cleansing Water, AC Peeling Booster, White Oxygen Sleeping Mask, Ceramide Hydra Fluid, Poretox Foaming Cleanser

L to R: Tone Up Serum, AC Cleansing Water, AC Peeling Booster, White Oxygen Sleeping Mask, Ceramide Hydra Fluid, Poretox Foaming Cleanser

Lapothicell is a Seoul, KR dermatologist based skincare line that I was introduced to by wasting time on the innanet via #08liter. “Lapothi” means cure in Old French and “Cell” stands for skin cells, so it literally translates to “cure the skin cell”. My concerns include: oily/combination skin, #adultacne, & #hyperpigmentation. My skincare goals ala 30’s are all about enhancement of the skin barrier.

Lapothicell is derived from Kuje Pharm specialists’ knowledge in high-technology skin science research. It claims to provide a clear solution for every skin type as a fundamental treatment. it provides hypoallergenic and effective ingredients to skin. The brand has basic skincare products ranging from sensitive for hypersensitive skin to minimize irritation. Lapothicell values surround mild, hypoallergenic products that have transformative properties on the skin. No animal testings, parabens, or colorants. Let’s get into it:

The AC daily calming line helps with skin smoothness and fights sebum (oily) issues. It’s an essential line for those who want around the clock care for skin. 

The AC Daily Calming Peeling Booster- a toner that will help exfoliate your skin leaving it looking clear and brighter. Key ingredients include glycolic acid, that helps to increase cellular turnover and reveal new skin.

The AC Cleansing Water- Think micellear water. The cleansing water removes all makeup and impurities without irritation and helps maintain the skin. Tears-c is a component derived from human tears to provide a deep cleaning to remove makeup and impurities without irritation. 

The AC Daily Calming Booster- a simple daily use for radiant and renewed skin. This product contains aha and botanical BHA ingredients for correcting skin sebum and removing dead surface skin cells. 

The Ceramide Hydrafluid- contains 95% pure ceramide and micro molecular hyaluronic acids that absorb deeply into skin. Mild moisture and long lasting hydration- perfection. 

The Poretox Daily Foaming Cleanser- super foaming and non drying cleanser that will remove all makeup, dirt and oil without irritation and do deep pore cleansing. It will leave your skin feeling hydrated and balanced. Key ingredients include Neem extract that remove dirt and impurities, centella asiatica that produces a calming effect, and juniperus communis for deep pore cleaning.

The Tone up line contains niacinamide and white flower complex for restoring skins natural brightness and glow. Also known as vitamin B3 and nicotinic acid, niacinamide is a very effective skin-restoring ingredient that offers multiple benefits for aging skin. Among these benefits is the ability to visibly improve the appearance of enlarged pores, uneven skin tone, fine lines, dullness, and a weakened skin surface.

The White Oxygen Tone Up Sleeping Mask- is an Instant oxygen bubble foaming, a skin tone balancing and brightening formula ask rich in nourishing hydrators that delivers soft and smooth skin during sleep. Wake up with a natural glow. 

The Tone Up & Clear Serum- Is made for wrinkles and fine lines while brightening. It’s a highly concentrated hydrating serum that penetrates deep inside giving silky finish. It brightens and restores the akin to a healthier and natural glow. Use for day and night.

Keep Your Youth Line consists of gels, serums and creams which promote anti-aging results to bring clarity to your skin.

The Eye Contour Gel is a light weight and refreshing gel eye care product. It contains adenosine and patented ingredients SYN-coll to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. The eye contour gel is fast absorbing leaving no residue. Locks in moisture and beneficial components to upgrade and boost anti sharing skincare regime.

All of #lapothicell products are hypoallergenic, refreshing, and transformative. Let me know what you think in the comments below.

 

+Many thanks to Lapothicell for their support in this blog. This is not a sponsored post + products were provided for editorial consideration. These are not affiliated links, I do not receive compensation for product selection. All opinions and thoughts about the businesses featured are my own. I stay true to your weekly followup.

Pink Himalayan Salt Tonic

Skincare

Pink Salt is one of the  cleanest salts available. It is found only in the Himalayan region of Pakistan in “The Salt Range”, a huge mountain 700 miles long consisting only of salt. It’s filled with the full spectrum of 84 minerals and trace elements.  

For beauty uses, this simple solution of salt in water infuses your skin with trace elements of magnesium, potassium, calcium, sodium, and iodide found in salt water for detoxification – which is essentially what this facial toner is designed to do.

Since I have combination oily skin, prone to breakouts, I find that salt water tends to tighten my face naturally and dual as a natural antiseptic to kill bacteria that encourage blemishes. The pink salt helps to disinfect, dislodge dirt, toxins and wastes from skin pores. The ACV helps to balance the skin’s PH by returning acidity to the skin, restore the acid mantle that often gets disrupted, and remove any additional trace of makeup and dead skin; The Witch Hazel soothes and calms.

Create Your Own

I used The San Francisco Salt Company’s Himalayan product in a  fine grain to create the tonic. I then went to refine the salt even more with my pestle and mortar for proper distribution into the fine mist glass vials that I purchased on Amazon. I used a simple pipette (you could also use a straw) to distribute the witch hazel, a few drops of ACV to each vial, and distilled water. Shake when finished and you’re ready for use. I tend to keep one of these in my travel carry on and in my car for pre and post workout. 

Pro Tip: When using a toner, I am a disciple of the Shishedo facial cotton, for its ability to do sweep across the face effortlessly without any harsh backlash from the product that I often get with traditional cotton pads. These are a game changer- I can never go back to regular cotton again.

Check out the progression photos below + let me know if you decide to make this tonic, or have your own crafty recipes! Best, DrD. 

+SF Salt Company for their support in this blog. This is not a sponsored post + products were provided for editorial consideration. These are not affiliated links, I do not receive compensation for product selection. All opinions and thoughts about the businesses featured are my own. I stay true to your weekly followup

Kiehls 1851: Nightly Refining Micro-Peel Concentrate

Skincare

I have arrived. 

If you’ve been following along the YWF train this year, you’d know by now that I absolutely hate the summer. Humidity, enlarged pores, makeup that melts? Ugh. Hard pass. So I was looking for a product that would help me recover from my summer woes and I turned to none only than, Kiehls 1851. 

 Honey, I had a little something done and it`s not as bad as yesterday but I have looked better

Honey, I had a little something done and it`s not as bad as yesterday but I have looked better

I have to admit, I was a bit intimidated to use this product. The idea of chemical peels give me all sorts of Samantha Jones vibes, asking myself in Kiehls: will this burn off layers of my skin? I mean, I know what I’m doing, but do I really know what I’m doing? Don’t be foolish. But let me tell you: I would die for this serum. I have seen a difference in my skin texture with this serum within a few days (now a couple of weeks worth of use). This product is essentially a fool proof way to save you from trips to the dermatologist or your local skin-care esthetician because you can exfoliate your skin while you sleep with a few drops of this concentrate to get you straight to the beauty. 

Although it is for nightly use, I apply the serum every other night, sometimes a few more nights in between after a thorough cleanse and tone and followup with my Midnight Recovery Concentrate (Kiehls 1851) and eye cream. While you sleep, the magic takes place. Unlike other peels, your skin isn’t going to literally peel like skin from a sunburn. However, it is going to do a light exfoliation process during the night, so by the time you wash your face in the morning, all the dead micro cells are being washed away. This is also a good product for helping clear skin of marks/discoloration if you experience any hyper-pigmentation. 

Ingredients: The Quinoa Husk extract refines the feel of rough texture and reveal newly radiant, refreshed skin. Previous acne scarring provides smoother and less noticeable marks on my skin. This is a flawlessly effective product that I personally advocate for as I move away from physical (coarse) exfoliants. After a couple nights use, I was able to see a reduction in pore size and increased evenness of tone. I have been really pleased with the smoother skin as a result of this product.

Kiehl’s Overnight Biological Peel is/was? going to be discontinued and replaced with the Nightly Refining Micro-Peel. The old Overnight Biological Peel used HEPES as its main exfoliant too, but doesn’t have the extra fruit-based acids that the Nightly Refining Micro-Peel. HEPES is a form of mild exfoliant, compared to the other options on the market (e.g. a glycolic acid peel). The pH of the peel is 4.5, which makes it acidic, but less acidic than a typical acid peel.

Kiehls has a history of making the skin healthy, feeling so soft and hydrated and absorbed quickly. Visit any Kiehls store to get a skin consultation and of course samples to test out and then become a true disciple of their skincare products if you are skeptical and hop the wave. Your skin is waiting. 

MSRP: $54 USD – worth it, thank me later.

Best, Dr. Dyce