Beauty Myths Debunked Part 2

A couple of weeks ago I posted on beauty myths that we’ve been led to believe by family members and sales associates. Some may have disappointed you, while others may have been a happy surprise. Well, I promised I would bring you guys more beauty myths I found on the web, and here they are. Enjoy!

Preparation H can reduce eye puffiness.

Everyone knows what this stuff is right? Its a cream/gel used for hemmoroid relief. Yay, now lets slap it on our face! Preparation H was a product widely used in years ago to help with under eye puffiness and quick fixes for jiggly thighs before heading on the stage or runway. It was thought that in earlier formulas, live yeast cells would actively reduce puffiness. What the newer formulas do is something else that can be easily explained. It works to constrict the blood vessels where applied reducing puffiness with the ingredient, phenylephrine. No clinical studies have been shown to prove that this works, only the reports of people who have tried.

Plucking one gray hair will result in more growing in its place

There are no studies proving this one to be true and I’ve even heard it myself. How would this even be possible? No, plucking one would not result in 10 more growing back, if that were the case wouldnt balding men start plucking whats left of their hair to restore it all back?

borrowed from Pink Sith's Awesome blog!

Not everyone can wear red lipstick

Wrong, Everyone can, it just may take some hunting. Maybe all of us can’t wear the red lipstick we saw our favorite movie star wearing in a movie, but knowing how to pick a red lipstick with the correct undertones will help. Still worried how you’re going to pull this off? No worries, the Pink Sith did a whole week on red lipsticks, from the affordable– to the luxury brands. She even reviewed a set from Ultraflesh that helps us red-lipstick-dummies figure it out, with versions ranging from cool, neutral, and warm, as well as sheer to matte. She couldn’t have made it easier! If you are seriously scared but want to try a red, go for a sheer lip tint like one from Clarks Botanicals. It gives just as hint of glossy color!

You should never pluck hairs from the tops of your eyebrows.

This rule holds true for people that don’t know how to shape their brows. Please, if you have no idea how to shape your brows, put the tweezers down, and leave it to a professional. Plucking hairs from the tops of your brows is fine as long as you are cleaning up the basic shape. Even trimming the brow hairs so that they don’t stray is fine, but I must stress- you must be comfortable doing this before you try. It can give the final touch to a clean brow shape.

It’s better to pop a pimple and let the pus out that leave it

Seriously, I’ve talked about this so many times. You’ve got to keep your hands off your face. Popping a zit is the worst thing you can do. You may think that releasing the pus from that gigantic monster on your face is helping , but it most cases it isn’t. You are pushing the infection deeper into the surrounding skin causing more inflammation and infection, making you at risk for breakouts nearby. Not to mention scaring later on. Hands OFF!

The pricier the product, the better it must be

You would think that if you spend more you get more for your money, right? Not always. While some drugstore brands may have a lower price, they may be produced by a larger company that can afford to do the research on their products–much like other high-end brands. High-end brands may also be spending money on fancier packaging rather than ingredients or testing. You can have equal luck finding high quality ingredients like retinoids and vitamins in both high-end and drugstore brands, it’s just a matter of doing your research.

Cell phones can make you break out

Weird, but true. Think about it. You have your face pressed up against a plastic or glass screen how many times a day? The sweat, dirt, and makeup can transfer from your face to your phone anytime they meet, so make sure to wipe down your phone often to kill the chance of breeding even more germs.

Pimples crop up overnight

It does seem like this is true, but it’s actually false. Pimples take time to develop on the face and don’t “just happen” out of nowhere. Sebum migrates from the skin surface to follicles where they can become trapped with oil, dirt or makeup causing infection and inflammation of the skin. Once that pore becomes clogged you get visit from the pimple fairy and that can take anywhere up to 7 days to ensue. Products like hairspray can cause an immediate blockage of the pore causing some breakouts, as well as pre-period hormones. Yay for womanhood!

Botox can prevent wrinkles

Botox actually can prevent wrinkes. It actually corrects wrinkles present and prevents them. Botox is an injectable toxin that temporarily paralyses facial muscles. By paralyzing the muscles it prevents the wrinkles from forming or deepening. The result is a smoother softer appearance. It sounds scary, but if you do your homework and go to someone who knows what they are doing it

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can be an amazing thing. Hey, I’ve tried it, and I’m pretty sure I’ll do it again. I just need to get a sign that says will work for botox to keep it up.

As long as I exercise, I don’t have to diet

I have heard this one among friends all to often. I can eat what I want as long as I run. Yeah. Right. That may have been fine when we were kids and had the metabolism that could burn through a bag of refined sugar–but as we get older and more sedentary you will surely regret mumbling these words to yourself. You must watch what you eat AND exercise to maintain weight, it’s an absolutely must. I won’t say there is only one way to do it, but you do need to find a method to watching your intake and balancing it with energy burning exercise. You will get heavier, and you will be upset with your efforts.

I can get by with flossing right before going to the dentist

Flossing is something so easily missed that its frightening. Flossing is something sooooo easy you can do for your overall health. If you think flossing right before you go to the dentist is OK, you’re wrong. Think about it, your dentist or hygienist clean and look at teeth ALL the time. That gunk or calculus that has hardened on your teeth below the gum line is crying to be scraped off. Trust me, they know if you take care of your teeth–they know. I’m not sure how many of you know, but your gum health is related to your overall health. Diseases like gingivitis and periodontitis aren’t just problems for your teeth and gums, it can leave you at higher risk for heart disease,complications with diabetes, and other inflammatory disease of the body. Just try and floss

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more often, please!

Heavy foundation covers bad skin

We’ve all seen someone do this before, right? And have you ever thought that person did it well enough to hid their pimples or other problems? No! It never works so learning the correct application is key. Wearing a foundation or makeup that is too heavy for your skin will only accentuate problems and make you look older. Makeup can settle into fine lines around eyes making us 10 years older than we want. Dark eye shadows can make eyes seem harsh if applied too much. My suggestion? Find a good concealer for under eyes or blemishes that match your skin well. Apply full coverage concealer where needed with a brush and blend out. Then apply your facial tint or light coverage makeup on top. A light dewy tint can brighten up a complexion, and minimize the appearance of any blemishes or shadows. If shine is an issue, lightly blot with blotting paper or a quick swipe with a translucent power. Minimal is key. Don’t be scary.

Milk can soften skin

I know, how many of us have a milk bath, really? I know, but I thought this was awesome idea and was hoping a reader has given this a try. Milk can actually soften skin and was used for this centuries before. Milk contains lactic acid which can smooth skin by helping aid in exfoliation. Without the roughness of a scrub or the anticipation of a chemical peel, milk is safe and is affordable to try.

Well readers, what do you think? Did you know about any of these before? Are there any that you were lead to believe and found out the hard way? Share in the comments below. Do you want an edition 3, you’ll have to let me know!

XOXO

Claudia

My Results : 3 Months of Tretinoin for Acne

acne pimple comic

So I promised I would do a follow-up post to my original: My Firsth Month On Tretinoin for Acne. In that post, I gave you a week by week picture to track my progress– now I’ll let you know what 3 months was like! I have to admit I did not get photos for each week, I got busy some weekends, and even more embarrassing to admit was that my skin turned pretty bad during the second month and I just skipped the photos entirely. 🙁 However, I did manage to get enough for you to see real progress and I am very happy with my results.

** Keep in mind all photographs shown here are taken by myself using my iPhone. I used the HDR setting so you could see my skin under different light settings.**

For the past three months I have stuck to a fairly straight forward skincare routine. I don’t test out as much products on my face now since I don’t want to mess up what has been fixed so far, but just as a reminder here is what I am doing and how I am using it.

Step 1 :Cleanser

cerave hydrating cleanser

Cerave Hydrating Cleanser (using daily AM/PM)

neutrogena-acne-wash-

Neutrogena Oil-free Acne Wash ( using 1-2 per week ONLY, CANNOT use 2x in a single day too drying and aggrevates exisiting acne)

Step 2: Treat with Benzoyl Peroxide

DDF 5 percent BP gel acne treatment gel that works

DDF 5% BP Gel with Tea Tree Oil (was using all over lower half of face but too drying, now only applied as spot-treatment and 2-3/week on cheeks only)

Step 3: Treat with Tretinoin

atralin_tretinoin_

Atralin (Tretinoin) 0.05% (used 5 out of 7 days of week, entire face treated)

Step 4: Moisturize Skin

cerave moisturizing lotion

Cerave moisturizing Lotion (used AM/PM daily, or after anytime I wash my face)

avene hydrance optimale light

Avene Hydrance Optimale Light Hydrating Cream (used around more sensitive areas of the face AM/PM daily like corners of mouth and nose)

Additionals:

I do use Ole Henriksen’s Blue/Blackberry Enzyme Mask for added moisturization and exfoliation of peeling skin, but my use varies from 1-3 times a week depending on how my skin is doing.

Ok, ok…you’ve done enough reading, here are my results

Week 6

6 weeks using tretinoin for acne6 weeks using tretinoin for acne side view

Week 8

8 weeks using tretinoin for acne

8 weeks using tretinoin for acne

ok…this is when it started to get horrific in my eyes. The pimples all came out during month two. It was terrible and for a while I thought it was just getting worse. I managed to continue with treatment but was honestly crossing my fingers at the same time!

Week 9

9 weeks using tretinoin for acne9 weeks using tretinoin for acne
As you can see during week 8 my skin was inflamed and red– that isn’t just the photos. In week 9 photos I am healing but have some terribly noticeable marks. My effort to stop touching my face went into full effect around this time. I seriously cannot stress enough how important it is for us acne sufferers to keep our hands off our face. Give yourself a test over the weekend or some 3 day period where you can commit to not touching your face. And by touching your face I mean stop popping “the little ones”, stop messing with the big ones “to make them go away faster”, just stop touching them all together. In my case 3 days of no touching made me realize I was making the acne worse and now I do whatever I can to promise myself no touching! The pimples will heal faster, promise!

Curious how my skin looks at week 12? Here is goes, let me know what you think. Do you see improvement? I think so! Right at this moment I don’t have a single pimple to complain about. My

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skin is clear and I am enjoying it!

12 weeks using tretinoin for acne12 weeks using tretinoin for acne12 weeks using tretinoin for acneThe marks you see now are mostly leftover scarring. I will have to ask the doctor how well tretinoin will work to fade those, or if I will need to add something to my regime. I know hydroquinone is something used to lighten dark spots, but it’s also had so much negative light shined on it I wouldn’t want to pick one out myself. My next appointment is early December so we will see.

 

 

 

 

My First Month On Tretinoin For Acne

Hey everyone. I wanted to share my experience using tretinoin so that others can know possibly what to expect. I decided to go to a dermatologist a month back because I felt the zits were getting a little out of control. It kinda came outta nowhere months back and I could not pin point why it was happening.

I’ve always been fairly lucky to have good skin. By that I mean I mostly had clear skin but possibly one or two small ones occasionally that I could easily cover up. Well at 29 years old I had developed some random giant cystic ones and they just weren’t going away anymore. The lower half of my face was covered with bumps at all times, and while makeup covers discoloration, it doesn’t cover the bumps. I started feeling more and more self-conscious about it and began trying to use everything to kill the pimples…and then trying to do the opposite by using nothing, going makeup free on weekends to see if improvement would happen. I hated my skin. I felt like the years of spending hours in the sun baking and lack of having a very specific skin regime was to blame. I had my good years….this was it. Shit skin. I felt ashamed….and even worse because I know I don’t have the worst case of it ever–and here I was complaining. Well, I had to do something—I didn’t care what it was going to cost–I just needed to find out some solutions, I wanted pretty skin again and knew it was possible.

Atralin tube Tretinoin

My new skin care program was completely different from now on.

At the end of my appointment I was prescribed to use a tretinoin cream on a nightly basis, along a 5% benzoyl peroxide treatment (I used the DDF version), a gentle soap-free cleanser (Cerave), neutrogena’s oil free acne wash for alternating days, and then a oil free moisturizer. I got a ton of samples from the office, which I thought was kind because I was NOT there on insurance.

I decided to document my progress each week with photos so you could see.

I have to say that it was the first week of using tretinoin and the BP gel where my face “hurt”. I knew there was going to be some irritation but hoped it wouldn’t be too bad. I could see that my skin was started to turnover more quickly, the skin looked fresher but stung like hell when I used moisturizer. I was warned that using too much would cause my face to peel a lot and if used properly my face would have minimal if no peeling. my face peeled…and peeled….and peeled more. I felt like the bearded lady except with dry , sensitive skin that I now had.

That had to be the most difficult part of this whole new routine. Figuring how much of everything to use. It’s suggested to use a pea sized drop of each to cover the entire face. Over the course of the first month I have to skip using the BP gel on my chin and reserve it for my cheeks nose and temples only. I use the tretinoin gel all over my face (excluding my eyes) on most nights. I skip two days a week whenever I feel necessary. I still peel from time to time but have incorporated a new Caudalie Lip Conditioner for when I accidentally swipe over my lips and dry them out, and Avene Hydrance Optimale Rich Hydrating Cream for my chin that needed extra moisturizing. Hallelujah for those two products there because I felt like they saved my from having my lower face peel away. My face is now comfortable. I can also wear makeup without it peeling over my skin halfway through the day.

Here are my starting point pictures. You can see I had some embarrassing giant ones calling my name.

Here I am after one full week of using everything. You can see that the old ones are healing but that new ones are cropping up. Fun. As much as I hate this process I know it’s all for the good. I can expect new ones that have been waiting to resurface to come out and say hello over the course of the next couple of months. Yes, my skin was congested and as my skin keeps exfoliating away, its bringing all the deep ones out. You will also notice the peeling that is showing to the side of my mouth. The corners of the mouth should be completely avoided (I forgot as I would be rubbing all over my face). I also put moisturizing lotion near the corners of my mouth to help too.

One week after using tretinoinOne week after using tretinoinHere I am after two weeks on Tretinoin. Pretty much the same thing is happening. What I am noticing is how quickly pimples now crop up and how quickly they come to the surface. If you are a picker–beware! Tretinoin makes your skin more sensitive so if you try to pop and pick your pimples will feel sore. They will pop more easily–but at this point we really gotta cut that crap out because it isn’t helping. Do you best to let them go..I’m still trying to refrain.

Two weeks after using tretinoin

Two weeks after using tretinoinOk, so by now I’m starting see more improvement overall. In general, any pimples that are working their way to the surface are smaller in size. Week three shows there are less and what is there is healing. So here is after three weeks using tretinoin.

Three weeks after using tretinoinThree weeks after using tretinoinFinally it has been a whole month using the treatment. I visited the doctor on Friday and we both agreed there is improvement, but that I can expect more to work there way up to the surface over the next couple months. I don’t get the giant ones really, just those “under the surface” little bumps over my lower cheeks. I suspect those will be the last one to leave. My forehead is clear but I still like to use the tretinoin because it has helped with fine lines around my eyes and on my forehead. I wonder if it will help lessen the cover of sun spots that are starting to show around my eyes also. I’m excited to see..

After one month on tretinoinWhile I still don’t have perfect skin yet I do see that my skin is getting better. Were these pictures embarrassing to share? Hell yes. Who wants to show their zitty photos? No one! But I do hope that it helps someone who is wondering about this stuff. It will take time and that means patience. Know that your face is still gonna have zits throughout the beginning of the process. Know that if your face hurts or is peeling to stop for a day or two. Your skin has to HEAL at the same time so give it a breather if its asking for it.

I’m going to continue to track my progress in hopes of showing you even better results.

I know this stuff isn’t for everyone. Some would say it’s too strong but when you feel like nothing else works, it’s time to get some professional advice and give it a shot. I tried reading about people’s experiences on the web and all I read were people who had severe cases of acne and how it didn’t work for them. Well, it seems to be working for me. And I’m willing to give it more time to see clear skin.

Is there some product or skin care regime that you would swear by? Has anything wowed you and continually wowed you over the months of using it? I’m curious to know what really works, because before this I was considering the Baby Quasar or the Tanda lights to help…..