Archives for July 2012

Breakouts Be Gone!

The summer heat can often bring out the worst in your skin. Sunburns lead to peeling, flaking cheeks, noses and foreheads. The wrong kind of sunblock can clog your pores. Chlorine and salt water and UV rays dry out your skin. But the heat also makes your skin oilier. All of these put together is a perfect storm for pimples. If you haven’t been exfoliating and cleansing your skin as you should (salicylic cleansers are a MUST this season), those pesky pimples will start to rear their ugly heads.

Here are some quick fix, must-have, go-to solutions that should be in every girl’s beauty arsenal.

Mario Badesku Drying Lotion


Cost: $17

This is the holy grail of all pimple healing solutions. It is world-famous. And at only $17, it should be in everyone’s beauty kit. DON’T shake before you use. We learned this from the experts themselves. Simply place a Q-tip into the bottle so that pink sediment gloms onto the cotton tip and then slowly bring it to the top, allowing the medicine to attach to the entire Q-tip (we don’t know how it works, it just does!)

From their website

The Drying Lotion is a fast acting, effective acne spot treatment. Formulated with salicylic acid, calamine and other quick-drying ingredients, this product will shrink ugly whiteheads virtually overnight while you sleep. While other acne spot treatments can irritate and dry delicate or sensitive skin, this product is safe and effective for all skin types. 

HOW TO USE: Before bed, after cleansing, toning and moisturizing apply a dab of lotion directly on the whitehead using a cotton swab. Do not rub in. Let it dry and rinse off in the morning. DO NOT shake the bottle and apply only the pink sediment on the skin.

BEAUTY TIP: Great for back acne and breakouts on the chest. The Drying Lotion will also take the itch out of mosquito bites fast!

Isopropyl Alcohol,Deionized Water (Aqua), CalamineCamphorColloidal SulfurSalicylic Acid,Glycerine, Zinc OxideTitanium DioxideTalc


Sonya Dakar Drying Potion


Cost: $25

This cobalt blue bottle is another must-have for your beauty stash. We like to use this and Mario’s Drying Lotion interchangeably. The potion goes on cool and white and you can almost feel the solution drying out that pesky pimple the moment it starts tingling on your skin. So what if you go to bed with pink and white spots all over your face. By morning, your pimple will be banished and you will be a beauty once again.

From their site:

Recognized by many as ‘Hollywood’s secret weapon’, this emergency solution helps treat and eliminate breakouts both above and below the skin’s surface. Formulated with Dead Sea sulfur to reduce redness and puffiness; pure lavender and chamomile to calm breakouts, sage to disinfect and peppermint to stimulate blood circulation to promote speedy healing.

• Perfect for both face and body breakouts
• Great for regular breakouts or last minute pop-ups
• Overnight solution for breakouts
• Dead Sea Sulfur
• Lavender & Chamomile Extracts
• Sage & Peppermint Extracts
Shake well and dot directly on blemish.
Although Drying Potion is a great spot treatment for those annoying occasional breakouts, we suggest that you include a Sonya Dakar skin product regimen for a comprehensive solution for your acne.

Juice Beauty Blemish Be Gone

Cost: $15

We like this easy, roll-on blemish solution because it’s part of a whole blemish clearing system. Plus it’s made from all natural goodies like organic apples and raw sugar and willow bark. It just makes you feel like you are feeding your face. Plus the aloe and Vitamin C helps reduce any darkening or scarring that the beastly breakouts may cause.

From the site:


Improve your skin’s texture and treat those problem areas anytime and anywhere. This on the go spot treatment contains a powerful hydroxy acid complex with certified organic apple, lemon and raw cane sugar blended with white willowbark and Co Q10 for a fresh and radiant complexion.


A powerful hydroxy acid complex of certified organic apple, lemon and willow bark unclogs pores, reduces breakouts and lightens scars while organic aloe, coenzyme Q10 and fat-soluble vitamin C renew the skin.

Burt’s Bees Herbal Blemish Stick

Cost: $8

We always like to include one easy, low-cost alternative to our readers. And Burt’s Bees Herbal Blemish Stick is just that. Plus, you don’t have to run out to the mall to grab it. It’s available at most drugstores or supermarkets. Plus it has tea tree oil, the pimple’s greatest enemy. Simply roll it on and go. It may sting a bit and has that tea tree oil smell (you either love it or hate it), but it works, it’s easy and it’s cheap. Who can say no to that?

From the site:

So long blemishes. Nature has a fix. Our all-natural blemish stick contains 10 effective herbal ingredients including Tea Tree and Juniper Oils, known for their antiseptic and astringent qualities. It also has Willow Bark, which clarifies and gently exfoliates your skin to decongest pores and help prevent annoying breakouts. So your skin will be clear and you’ll be smiling ear to ear.

• Contains 10 effective herbal ingredients
• Has Tea Tree and Juniper Oil known for their antiseptic and astringent qualities
• Clarifies and exfoliates skin gently and effectively with Willow Bark



What’s the Appeal of At-Home Peels?

Gone are the days when you had to book a visit to your dermatologist or aesthetician to get a chemical peel. While peels are still a popular choice at salons across the country, they are pricey (ranging anywhere from $500 to $2000), sometimes painful and require multiple visits to help improve skin tone. Peels typically include alpha hydroxy acids (glycolic acid), beta hydroxy acids (salicylic acid) or lactic acids.  For the most benefits to repair sun damage, reduce acne scarring and even out skin tone, repeated chemical treatments are required. Here are some at-home solutions that are easier on the checkbook, require minimal to no down-time for recovery and can be squeezed into your busy schedule (or between professional visits).


dr. brandt laser a-peel system:


We tried this and found it to be an effective peel without being too strong on the skin.  It tingles, which lets you know it is working. The second lotion (soothing gel) didn’t seem necessary, but it was included in the package so we used it. A regular moisturizer for sensitive skin might work just as well.

From Dr. Brandt website:

cost: $75

Peel away dead skin cells to reveal a radiant complexion.

This two-step peeling system, now repackaged in a convenient dual-chamber container, removes dead layers of cells on skin’s surface to re-texturize, refine pores, and reveal smooth, radiant skin just like an in-office chemical peel.

What it is formulated to do:

dr. brandt® laser a-peel® system is formulated to mimic in-office procedures that tighten pores, improve elasticity, and reveal skin radiance. This innovative duo is formulated with lactic and glycolic acids, and proprietary QuSome™ delivery technology to bring you high-impact results in minimal time.

  • exfoliates & reveals radiance
  • refines and smoothes skin’s texture
  • tightens pores & helps firm skin
  • improves elasticity

After 6 weeks of treatment*:

  • 69% reported improvement in skin radiance/glow
  • 80% reported improvement in the overall appearance/texture of the skin

*Clinical study conducted on 35 women 35-59 years


REN Glycolactic Skin Renewal Peel Mask


After 10 minutes, this tingly mask has a delightful fruity scent was a tad sticky, but seemed to deliver the results. After using for a few weeks, there was some discoloration reduction and an overall “clean” look. The fact that it is all-natural is a big plus!

From website:

Cost: $55

What it is:
A potent bioactive complex that reduces fine lines and dramatically improves tone, firmness, and radiance.

What it is formulated to do:
This treatment safely and effectively resurfaces the skin, without causing irritation. Its four-fruit-acid-complex (lactic, glycolic, tartaric and citric) and papain enzyme create a gentle-yet-potent exfoliating action that leaves skin glowing and healthy.


Kinara Red Carpet Facial Kit


We added this kit despite the fact that it’s a whole system (not just a chemical peel) because we’ve heard the results are the best around.  Not a cheap peel, by any means, but if it keeps Hollywood stars looking their best on the red carpet, perhaps it’s worth the big price tag. If you can’t make it out to Hollywood to go to the Kinara Spa, you can get the next best thing by using their Red Carpet Facial. We are putting this on our “must-have” list.

From their website:

Cost: $145

The exclusive Red Carpet Facial gained fame at Kinara Skin Care Clinic as the secret weapon of stars requiring immediate, highly-visible results for their highest-visibility events. The Red Carpet Facial Kit was designed to create the same results-driven facial treatment at home and on-demand. The only side effect is loving how you look!

Close-up ready skin in 3 simple steps:

  • Peel: Turn over skin cells to reveal refined, brighter and hydrated skin with Lactic and Malic Acids.
  • Neutralize: Revitalize dull, tired skin with a deep cleansing effervescent sensation via Argeninge and Sodium Bicarbonate.
  • Mask: Hydrate, soote, plump and oxygenate with Lysate extract, Pikea Robusta and Mineral Complex.

All easily applied with a treatment bowl and brush (included).


Exfoliates, hydrates, diminishes appearance of lines and large pores.

Long-Term Benefits:

  • Improves skin elasticity and firmness.
  • Ensures radiant and clear skin while improving texture and pore size.
  • Controls breakouts and acne.

Warning: Results can be addictive.


Philosophy: The Microdelivery Peel


This a great peel system that really wakes up your skin.  It reduces brown spots and helps even out skin tone. Vitamin C /peptide crystals are a great addition to the Lactic/Salycilic acid peel and complement the peeling process nicely. A great exfoliating peel at a great price.

From their website:

Cost: $40-$68

What it is:
A two-step, exfoliating, skin makeover.

What it is formulated to do:
The Microdelivery Peel Kit not only exfoliates the skin, it delivers vitamin C and peptides to the skin. This completely new approach to skin rejuvenation resurfaces and replenishes the skin at the same time.

features & benefits

  • smoothes and resurfaces rough texture
  • helps minimize the look of fine lines
  • helps brighten and even skin tone

What else you need to know:
Kit includes a 2 oz The Microdelivery Peel, Lactic/Salicylic Activating Gel and a 2 oz Vitamin C/Peptide Resurfacing Crystals.


  • Coming up: We will do a follow-up with “Peels in a Pad” — several companies are offering an even easier way to deliver their peels in portable, easy-to-use pads.  We’ll let you know which pads work best.


Fight Summer Frizz

Not all of us get beachy curls at the first hint of summer heat (we’d venture to say that there are very few out there who do). So how do you tame your frizzy locks when humidity hits? Here are some great tried and true products we turn to when the heat rises.

While we all know that healthy, summer hair needs to be protected by the harsh elements of too much sun, chlorine and the constant strain of being pulled into ponytails, these solutions are strictly for fighting frizz.  Keeping your hair moisturized, conditioned, covered with a hat when possible and using chlorine-removing shampoos are all important to keep your strands bouncy and full of life. But when your hair is growing fuller and frizzier by the minute, here are some solutions to return to sleek.

Paul Mitchell Super Skinny Relaxing Balm

Visit the Paul Mitchell website here:



Smoothes and controls hair.

Helps hair dry faster, fights frizz and delivers incredible memory.

Leaves even the most rebellious locks shiny and manageable.

  • Our exclusive Super Skinny® Complex displaces water and constricts hair to speed up drying and styling.
  • Wheat and vegetable proteins combined with conditioning ingredients moisturize hair from within.
  • A unique, humidity-resistant ingredient provides memory that lasts in any weather.



Ouidad Climate Control Heat & Humidity Gel

(Cost: $22 for 8.5 ounce, $52 for 24 ounce, $66 for 33.8 ounce)

To keep our curls sleek or tame our stubborn waves under the summer sun, we turn to this award-winning, beauty expert recommended gel again and again. Just a small amount will make your hair smooth and shiny. Plus it adds an extra level of protection from heat irons and blow dryers. Learn more from the info found on their website:

A “smart” gel, formulated with heat-activated wheat protein that breathes in humidity, protects the hair shaft and prevents hair from expanding. Its water-soluble formula of amino acids and vitamin A nourish and hydrate hair, leaving it soft, manageable and full of shine without any buildup. Even the most unruly curls are rendered calm, cool, and collected with style that will last and last. Also works as great protection against blow-dryer heat when a straight style is preferred.


No Frizz Nourishing Styling Cream by Living Proof

They have a complete No Frizz System that is comprised of a shampoo, conditioner, leave-in conditioner, styling spray and nourishing styling cream. This is our go-to cream to de-poof hair and seal out the humidity.  Use this
Here is what they have to say about their No Frizz System on the Living Proof website:

Meet our miracle molecule, OFPMA. It does what oils and silicones can’t:

  • eliminates frizz by blocking humidity
  • smooths without weighing hair down
  • repels dirt to keep hair cleaner, longer

OFPMA does this by creating an exquisitely thin shield around each hair strand. The optimum shield is built and established over the first fives uses. With each use its frizz-fighting powers only get better — meaning it becomes stronger over time. Hair is smooth, soft, shiny, with lightweight, long lasting humidity protection for days. Whatever your style, welcome to the 1st day of your frizz-free life.

Eliminates frizz by blocking humidity. Weightlessly smoothes, conditions and tames frizzy, unmanageable hair. Free of silicones and heavy oils.

  • stops frizz. period.
  • weightlessly blocks humidity
  • smooths & conditions
  • no silicone or oils