This post is going to be a little different to my usual posts. Instead of a reviewing a product or talking about beauty, I’m going to be explaining the changes that will be happening to my blog in the next few days (and maybe forever!).
My blog, A Beauty-full World, has been hosted on Wix.com, since I first started it up a year ago. While I love the appearance of my blog, Wix just isn’t geared up for blogging. I have issues reading my comments, I don’t even get notified when someone likes or comments on one of my posts, and it’s very difficult to create good engagement on Wix.
It’s time for me to decide whether or not I want to renew my Wix membership for the next year, and I’ve decided not to renew. Aside from the issues I have with Wix, it’s really expensive!
Don’t worry! This doesn’t mean that my blog is going away.
I’m thinking of moving to WordPress.com, a blogging site specially designed for bloggers. I think this will be the best move for my blog.
My blog name and design will mostly stay the same; you might just notice that the URL is slightly different. I will try and keep my new blog as similar a possible to the blog you’ve grown to know (and hopefully love). All my blog posts will be available there as always, and you’ll be able to search for what you want just as before.
I hope setting up a whole new blog will be a relatively smooth process for me. I’m quite nervous about the move actually because I’ll lose all my engagement. It will really be back to square one.
Anyway, I expect that my next blog post will be on my new blog!
If you don’t like using makeup wipes, you may be debating between micellar water vs cleansing balm and cleansing oil! As a skincare blogger, I have to urge you to ditch the makeup wipes and switch to gentler (and less wasteful) ways of removing your makeup. Your skin will thank you for it! But now on to the pressing question… which is better? Micellar water or cleansing balms/oils?!
That’s what we’re here to find out…
What is micellar water?
Micellar water, or cleansing water, is a skin cleanser that is a pretty innovative way of cleansing the skin. This kind of cleanser is amazing for removing eye makeup (it can usually handle even waterproof makeup), base makeup, dust and sweat and SPF from the skin. To use micellar water, put some on a cotton pad or reusable cotton round and gently massage the makeup off your skin.
Cleansing water can be fragranced or unfragranced, and I would always recommend going for fragrance-free makeup and skincare because it’s gentler on the skin.
This type of cleanser is mostly water, but it also contains micelles which are the things that really put in the hard work. Micelles are surfactants which dissolve the oil and makeup on our skin (using their lipophilic tails), which are then rinsed off and removed by water in the micellar water.
I hope you’ll excuse the science there but I really think micellar water is pretty cool. Because of the way micellar water works, you can remove makeup without having to scrub or rub your skin too much. However, some friction is required to remove makeup and SPF this way (due to the cotton round), and it can be tempting to rub harder than necessary to speed up the cleansing process. Being rough with your skin can be irritating, it can damage acneic skin causing scars and it ages the skin.
Micellar waters should always be followed up by a second cleanse (using a gel, foam, powder or cream cleanser). This is really important as micelles aren’t the best to leave on your skin. Although technically they don’t have to be rinsed off (and all micellar waters will tell you they’re ‘no rinse formulas’), it’s best to remove them as there will be traces of cleanser, makeup, dust and SPF left behind.
I always think of it this way: the first cleanse removes SPF and makeup and the second cleanse properly cleans the skin.
Cleansing balm and cleansing oil
Cleansing balm and cleansing oil are a very different way to cleanse the skin. These should also be used to remove makeup and SPF (and can be used on the eye area) before following up with a second cleanser.
Like micellar water, these break down the oils in makeup, allowing it to be washed off. Firstly, take a good amount of cleanser and massage it into the skin. Watch how the makeup immediately spreads around because it’s breaking down! But here’s where cleansing balm and oil really differs from micellar water: to remove a balm or oil cleanser, you have to emulsify it. This means adding a little water to the cleanser on your face and watching how it turns milky or foamy.
Emulsifying a cleanser allows the oil to bind to water, meaning it’ll rinse off effectively (instead of having a thick layer of oil on the skin that can’t be removed easily). Balm and oil cleansers allow you to get a really effective, deep clean.
An advantage of this type of cleanser is that you don’t have to scrub, rub, or pull at the skin. It’s all very gentle- you literally just massage your skin!
So… which is best?
Both micellar water and balm/oil cleansers are great, and both have their advantages.
1) Cleansing power
Both cleansers are pretty effective at cleansing the skin, but I believe that cleansing balm/oil has stronger cleansing power. This type of cleanser is amazing at removing makeup, and removes it a little better than micellar water. This is especially the case with Korean lip tints and waterproof eye makeup.
2) Eco-friendly considerations
I have yet to find a plastic-free or low-waste micellar water. This is important to me because I’m trying to reduce my waste and live consciously. However, I’ve found several low-waste balm and oil cleansers that come in tins or glass bottles, making them better choices for the environment.
Further, to use micellar water you need to have cotton pads. These aren’t very ecological because growing cotton is damaging to the environment due to the large amount of water it requires to grow. There’s also the plastic packaging of these cotton pads to consider, too. You can buy reusable ones to help reduce your waste though!
3) Ease of use
Although both cleansers are easy to use and take about the same amount of time to effectively remove makeup, I find that micellar waters are easier to use around the eyes. My eyes are easily irritated, and using water near my eyes to rinse my balm/oil cleanser can make them quite red and sore.
On the other hand, when you use cleansing balm/oil you don’t need any extra tools, whereas to use cleansing water you need cotton rounds.
Overall, both micellar water and cleansing balm/oil are the best ways to remove makeup and pre-cleanse (in my opinion!). For a full makeup wipe rant, head over to my skincare guide.
It’s hard to say which one is better because they have different advantages! However… Because cleansing balms and oils are gentler and cleanse the skin better than micellar water, these might be best for the skin. But, if you’ve got sensitive eyes, I recommend micellar water for removing eye makeup because it’s less messy and there are less chances of getting cleanser or water in your eyes.
So, are you team micellar or team cleansing balm/oil? Let me know in the comments!
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Face masks are such a popular area of skincare, but have you ever wondered what clay masks do for your skin? There’s a lot of skincare out there that in my opinion, just doesn’t do much! And some skincare items that we love are actually quite harsh and damaging to the skin (such as alcohol-based toners!). Is this the same for clay masks? Are they secretly damaging? Hmm… keep reading to find out!
Clay masks can be made up of bentonite, kaolin or Rhassoul Clay, but they usually contain either bentonite or kaolin clay. Masks will also contain water, some preservatives (essential for keeping the masks bacteria free for a long time), some hydrating ingredients and some may contain light exfoliating ingredients (either physical exfoliants or chemical exfoliants). For more information on the different types of exfoliation, check out my skincare guide!
Clay masks can be used for general health, such as for draining infected bug bites (this is how my mum uses clay), but I personally like to use it on my face as skincare.
So, what do clay masks actually do for your skin?
Clay masks work by absorbing the oil and impurities from your skin, which makes them fantastic at pore cleansing and keeping acne at bay.
We all have pores within our skin, all over our face. Along the T-zone (the nose, cheeks, chin and forehead), these tend to be more visible as they contain sebum. Sebum is our skin’s natural oil, but this can become trapped and coagulated in our pores. This is totally fine and healthy, and not something to worry about at all. However, if you want to reduce the appearance of these pores, clay masks are your best friend!
There are lots of ways to remove sebum build-up from your pores, but most are quite aggressive for the skin. Pore strips stick to the skin, so that when they are removed, they pull out the sebum that’s stuck in your pores. These are fun to use and it can be so interesting to see the little plugs of dried sebum on the pore strip, however, these are not good for the skin. Because they rip out your sebum, they stretch out the pores which can permanently enlarge pores. I have a scar on my nose from the time I used to use these pore strips; I really don’t recommend using these!
You can also use chemical exfoliants such as salicylic acid to clear out your pores. These work well, but the effect is gradual and not as dramatic as when you use a clay mask. I truly believe that clay masks are the best way to keep your pores clean and thus make them appear less visible!
Because of the fact that clay masks clear out your pores, they can be a really great way to reduce acne breakouts!
Pimpled are formed due to bacteria growth in the pores. When the pore becomes infected, you get the growth of a pimple, either under the skin or at the surface with a visible pus head. I have acne, and my acne manifests itself under the skin as hard (and super painful) bumps, and also as whiteheads.
The clay within clay masks draws out the impurities from your skin and keeps your pores clear, which makes it less likely for an infection to form and thus you’ll be less likely to get a spot.
Clay masks can even help those pimples that are under the skin, by pulling the bacteria and pus out to the surface of the skin. This brings the spot to a head, speeding up the healing process!
What’s the best clay mask?
I have tried quite a few clay masks over the years, and I’ve even tried to make my own with pure clay and water. These technically work, but they’re very drying for the skin because pure clay with no hydrating ingredients added will be extremely drying. As spot treatments, these would work well but I wouldn’t recommend them for all over the face!
My favourite clay mask is Innisfree’s Pore Cleansing Clay Mask 2X. This is a really thick and effective clay mask, because it’s packed with clay mask and charcoal to cleanse the pores, absorb excess oil and deeply cleanse the skin. It also doesn’t leave my skin feeling stripped which is really important for me, because I use clay masks multiple times a week. This mask contains glycerin which is a great skin hydrator. This is definitely something to keep an eye out for when shopping for clay masks.
More than any other clay mask I’ve used, this really reduces the appearance of pores on my nose. I use it once or twice a week (I find it works best when I use it two days in a row), and when I wash it off after 15 minutes, I’m always surprised by the dramatic difference in my pore size. They seem so much smaller after use.
I also use this along my cheeks and jaw to help my acne. I find that this is a great mask for speeding up the healing process of pimples by drawing out the impurities and bringing the spot to a head. I can’t comment on how it works to prevent acne as I haven’t really seen a difference there, but I do like to use this twice a week on my acne.
The other Innisfree clay masks are also really great, and I’ve heard good things about Sand and Sky’s Australian Pink Clay Porefining Face Mask too!
There are so many different brands out there with their own clay mask products, so it can be hard to know what’s going to be right for you. My biggest tip is just to experiment and try different things out! Try to find masks that are detoxifying but also hydrating. This post isn’t sponsored, I’m just a fan of this mask.
Overall, I do recommend clay masks and I think they’re worth the hype, particularly for those of you with clogged pores or acne-prone skin.
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It’s easy to share acne tips, but it’s not so easy to talk about the mental effects that come from battling acne. If you’re going through acne, I want you to know that you’re not alone. Even skincare bloggers experience it too. In this blog post I’ll talk about what I’ve learnt about myself and my skin from having aggressive acne. Keep reading to find out more.
Acne, oh, acne. How can such tiny things affect us so greatly?
If you’re new to my blog, hi! My name is Jazmin and I’m a POC beauty blogger over here on A Beauty-full World, and I run a skincare-based Instagram account. I’m passionate about POC friendly skincare and beauty, and I love when I discover amazing eco-friendly but effective skincare brands.
I’m clearly no newbie to skincare. When I moved to university 5 years ago, I had pimples across my forehead and T-zone, but after working out what skincare worked for me, this largely cleared up. I haven’t had a bumpy forehead for years (thank you salicylic acid), and my cheeks and T-zone are much clearer. My skin tone is pretty even, which means I have never felt the need to wear any foundation or concealer.
Until now. Along my jaw and chin I have started developing deep cystic acne papules. For those of you who aren’t into the acne lingo, these are large (and angry) pimples. For women, acne in this area usually has a hormonal root, and I think this may be the case for me because I have long-suffered from irregular hormones which has led to other health conditions.
Cystic acne is painful, sensitive and kind of scary. Large papules like these are prone to rupturing when touching your skin, and they scar easily (they can even lead to pitted acne scars, the kind that leave little holes in the skin).
I’ve been dealing with this new acne for a few months now. It hasn’t been easy, but I’ve learnt a lot about my skin, my mental health and my general physical health because of this and now I’m ready to share this with you! The first points will be skincare the tips, and the rest will be more general health points.
I hope you find this useful.
Here’s what acne has taught me about skin health and mental health
1) Don’t pop your spots!
I know it can be so, so tempting to pop your spots, especially when they’re so full and sore. Popping them will give you temporary relief from the discomfort, but it always leads to more problems.
When you pop a pimple, you create a wound and leave it open to the introduction of bacteria. This means you’ll irritate the area, cause more redness and always inevitably it’ll produce another head.
With large spots, it’s especially important that you don’t give into temptation because this type of acne is prone to cause deep pitted scarring. This is the kind that leaves visible holes in the skin that can’t be treated except for with laser therapy.
The best treatment for papules that I’ve found are pimple patches. These are hydrocolloid stickers that are placed over the spot on clean, dry skin, and they absorb all the fluid within the pimple. I use these overnight and wake up to a flat spot. Usually, I only need one application, but particularly pesky spots will need a couple of applications. In my opinion, the best thing about these is that they physically stop you from touching your spots, keeping temptation of picking and bacteria at bay.
Now that I’m having this skin flare-up, it’s forcing me to keep my skincare simple. And I’m actually grateful for this! I love trying different skincare products (hello, I’m a beauty blogger!), but simple is really best. Our skin can only handle so much, so I recommend finding what works for you and STICKING to it.
I’ve had the same simple skincare routine for over a year now because it just works for my skin. But because of this hormonal flare up, I’ve had to scale it back even further. Now I just cleanse my skin and follow up by a salicylic acid serum and SPF during the day. At night I just use moisturiser after cleansing, and a couple of times a week I’ll use a retinol cream to try and battle the acne.
So, regardless of whether you’re currently experiencing acne or not, I highly recommend keeping your skincare routines simple!
3) Acne hurts!
Before I developed this flare-up, I had small spots on my cheeks which were due to blocked pores. These were sometimes itchy, and I thought that’s as bad as it gets. But now that I have this new acne along my jaw and chin, I realise that acne can really hurt!
My pimples feel full, sore, sensitive, and the pain can be really deep like a bruise.
4) Be patient with your body
Rome wasn’t built in a day; it’ll take time for you skin to heal. As much as I’d like to get rid of my acne with one wonder product, I know that I need to give it time to adjust to new treatments. It can feel like eternity but it takes at least a month to see improvements when you begin using a new skincare product or begin a new treatment.
I’ve started using a new retinol product which I believe will help with my cystic acne- and I already want to see results! I’m trying to stay positive and remind myself that I need to be patient. Someone give me strength!
5) It’s not your fault!
Everything within the body is linked; nothing in the body works independently. This is the same for the skin! Changes in the skin can be linked to hormonal fluctuation, mental health including stress and anxiety and other underlying conditions (such as gut issues).
You can have the best skincare routine in the world and eat all the right things and suddenly start developing cystic acne because of something completely out of your control. Cystic acne usually has a deeper cause, so be kind to yourself and cut yourself some slack!
I highly recommend seeing a doctor or dermatologist if you develop new, significant acne because it can be a sign of different changes or unbalances within the body. I personally would head straight to my GP were it not for the current Coronavirus situation.
6) Acne can really knock your confidence
As I mentioned before, I was really happy with the state of my skin before this acneic flare-up. My skin was quite balanced and even in tone, and I was becoming more and more confident in my appearance.
Now I notice I’m self-conscious about my skin. Acne can make you feel like you have a target on your face, and that everyone will notice it when looking at you. And it’s worse when people comment on it!
But for the most part, this isn’t really the case. When I look at other people with acne, I see them as just that; someone WITH acne. The acne doesn’t define them. I try to remind myself of this fact to take some of the pressure off myself.
7) Try and be patient with others
For the most part, when people comment on your acne, they’re just trying to be helpful. But this doesn’t stop the comments, looks and unsolicited advice from being annoying or hurtful!
Although people mean well, it can definitely be frustrating when people give you advice that you don’t ask for, especially when most people with acne have almost tried it all!
And it’s certainly not pleasant when your grandma repeatedly says she wants to pop your spot. Anyway, moving on…
I hope that you found these 7 points useful. Acne is so complex, and it can be such a blow to our confidence and self-esteem. Try to stay positive and investigate the potential causes of the changes in your skin if you have the means to.
Please consider to subscribing to my blog below before you go; it really helps me to carry on blogging!
Those of us who live in the city are at a disadvantage when it comes to skin health, because pollution is damaging to the skin. To find out how pollution damages the skin and leads to breakouts and how to avoid this effect, keep on reading.
How does pollution affect the skin?
Our skin is a natural barrier, but it is still vulnerable to free-radical damage. In the air, there are many different types of nanoparticles (small pollutants) and gases such as carbon monoxide which can damage the skin.
When our skin comes into contact with these nanoparticles, it causes free-radical damage to the skin. In the short term, you could get negative effects such as clogged pores and acne, but in the long run, pollution can lead to premature ageing.
Because nanoparticles get stuck in pores, they can cause blockages within them which lead to spots. You might also notice a worsening of the appearance of your pores when living in high pollution areas, because of the trapped pollution in your skin. I personally notice an increase in pimples when I spend a lot of time in the city. This can be extremely frustrating for those with acne prone skin, but I think this blog post will help you with this issue!
In the long run, free-radical damage can lead to premature ageing. This is because oxidation of the skin over time will break down its lipids and collagen, weakening the structure of the skin prematurely.
Those with skin sensitivity or skin that is prone to redness may also see an increase in these effects when spending extended periods of time in a busy city, because of the constant disruption of the skin barrier.
But it’s not all doom and gloom; here’s what you can do to protect your skin from these unwanted effects!
What you can do to protect your skin!
Washing your face alone might not be enough to get rid of the free-radicals settling into your pores. Deep cleaning is essential for fighting the effects of nanoparticles. Consider double cleansing when washing your face, to really cleanse your skin effectively. If you’re unsure how to double cleanse, feel free to reach out to me or leave a comment below! For really cleansing the pores, it’s a good idea to use cleansers specifically designed for pollution, and keep an eye out for salicylic acid.
The best way to protect yourself from the oxidation is to shield your skin from airborne pollutants by using skincare with antioxidants. These limit pollution’s effects on the skin. The Ordinary produces some extremely affordable and effective antioxidant serums, such as their Alpha Lipoic Acid.
In conjunction with this, using exfoliants will really help cleanse the pores and get the free-radicals off your skin. In my skincare guide, I explain about the different types of exfoliants, such as BHAs and AHAs. I really recommend checking it out to find out how to find the right exfoliator for you. My favourite exfoliators for protecting my skin against the effects of pollution are glycolic acid and salicylic acid.
When your skin is under attack from free-radicals, it’s more important than ever to add nutrients back to your skin. Using hydrating products, such as hyaluronic acid toners and serums will really help to rebalance the skin. I like to use a nice, nourishing moisturiser at night to help soothe my skin (my favourite at the moment is Cerave’s Moisturising Cream).
Keep an eye out for barrier protecting or repairing creams, too. These are specifically designed to help mitigate the effects of pollution on the skin. I’m currently using Bellflower’s Tamanu Oil Barrier Relief Cream which I’m really enjoying. It’s gentle and lightweight on the skin, and I enjoy using it when I’m spending time in London.
Although the effects of pollution can be really frustrating for those with acne-prone skin (like me), making sure you cleanse effectively and help protect yourself from free-radicals! I hope you found this post useful, and please subscribe to be notified when I post; it really helps me to keep doing the thing that I love.
Comment below where you live and if air pollution is an issue there!
To find out how to discover the right SPF for you and your particular skin needs, check out this post!
We all know that it’s important to wear sun screen, but it can be really difficult to know where to start because there are so many different types of sun screen out there! Plus, is it best to use SPF before or after your moisturiser? And what about moisturisers with SPF in them?
The different types of SPF
Good news; not all SPF gives a grey shadowy look to your skin! There are two types of sunscreen; chemical and mineral/physical SPF. The type of SPF that typically gives a greyish tint to your skin is mineral sunscreen. This is not a bad thing, but it might be bothersome for those with medium to dark skin tones, as it can really show up! For those with medium to dark skin tones, I would recommend chemical SPF as it is usually invisible and doesn’t show up on the skin.
When you use a physical sunscreen, the minerals sit on top of your skin and reflect the sun’s rays. This stops them from being able to enter the skin and cause you damage.
On the other hand, chemical sunscreen works by absorbing the sun’s rays. When they enter the skin, the chemicals break down the UV rays and stops them from harming your skin. Because I have medium toned skin, this is my preferred choice of SPF. No white cast!
Here’s how to correctly use SPF
Depending on the type of SPF you’re using, the order of use within your skincare routine can vary. Generally, physical sunscreen should be used at the end of your routine, so they can sit on top of your skin and do their job. Chemical sunscreen can be applied either before or after moisturiser, but I like to apply them before moisturiser to allow them to be absorbed into my skin better.
When applying SPF, don’t hold back. You need to apply plenty to make sure your skin is being protected well (about a half a teaspoon is ideal). And make sure to reapply every 2-3 hours to ensure you’re getting your protection all day long (especially in sunny weather).
Also, try to go for high concentration SPF, such as 50+. The more protection, the better!
Are moisturisers and makeup products that contain SPF effective?
This is a tricky question. I think it’s better to always use a separate SPF and not rely on sun protection from things like moisturisers and makeup. This is because SPF should be applied liberally, and if your only form of protection is from a foundation you won’t be applying a thick enough layer to properly protect yourself.
Moisturisers with SPF are fine to use, but the issue is that you need to reapply SPF throughout the day and you might not want to when you’re applying a thick moisturiser various times throughout the day.
Instead, I would recommend….
What SPF do I recommend?
I recommend lightweight, breathable sunscreens. My favourite ones are Korean because they’re great at formulating gentle and lightweight SPF. I highly recommend Purito’s Centella Green Level Unscented Sun lotion and Etude House’s Sunprise Daily lotion. La Roche Posay Antelios SPF and Bioré UV Aqua Rich Watery Essence are also non-greasy and comfortable on the skin.
I hope this post helped you on your quest to find the right SPF for your skin! If you have any questions, please leave them below! And consider subscribing to my blog to be notified when I upload, I would really appreciate that.
To find out if we need to wear sun screen every day, check out this blog post!
Our skin is incredibly sensitive and vulnerable to sun damage, and that’s why sun protection is the one skincare product that you should never skip! You don’t have to have a long skincare routine, and you don’t even need to have a skincare routine. BUT I would recommend using SPF on a daily basis. Now, let me explain why.
Although this is a beauty blog, skincare is not just about the appearance of skin, but the health, too. Wearing sun protection every day on your face (including when it’s grey outside or not very sunny) will protect your skin from unnecessary tissue damage and even skin cancer.
Here are 3 reasons why you should apply SPF to your face every day:
1) The sun’s rays can cause skin cancer
Prolonged exposure to UV rays over the years leads to deep tissue damage. This is the most serious type of tissue damage as it can lead to skin cancer! Skin cancer affects everyone; regardless of skin colour or skin tone. It’s often thought that black people can’t get skin cancer but this is absolutely not true.
It’s so important to not skip daily sun protection, especially if you live in a bright, sunny area. Please protect your skin!
2) The sun can age the skin prematurely
The sun’s UV rays also cause superficial skin damage which is a cause of premature ageing of the skin. The superficial tissue damage caused by the sun leads to a deterioration of collagen and elastin, which are two proteins that help to keep the skin bouncy, resilient and rigid. That’s why SPF is the biggest anti-ageing treatment out there.
It’s recommended to wear at least SPF 30 on a daily basis, and reapply every 2-3 hours, per the instructions of the sun screen. It’s also important to not neglect your neck as the skin there is thinner and so more prone to the first signs of ageing!
I want to mention that there’s absolutely nothing wrong with age showing on your face, but if you’re someone who would like to slow down the ageing process, wearing sun protection is a great way to hold back that tissue damage.
3) Exposure to the sun deepens acne scars
If you’re acne-prone, you might really enjoy the effects of wearing daily SPF on your skin. As someone who suffers from acne on my cheeks and along my jaw and chin, I know how annoying post acne scars are. You get rid of the spot and then you have to deal with a dark mark there for weeks and it’s so frustrating.
However, when you expose your acne scars to the sun, it deepens the colour (in the same way our skin tans when it’s in the sun). To help acne scars fade quicker, wear a high percentage of SPF (I recommend SPF 50), and reapply regularly.
Of course, it’s incredibly time consuming to apply SPF to your whole body every day and reapply frequently, so I must confess… I don’t apply SPF to my body unless it’s a sunny day and my skin is not protected by clothing. However, I do apply sun protection to my face every day regardless of the weather to help prevent my acne scars from darkening and to protect my skin from sun damage.
If you’re looking for a good SPF that doesn’t leave a white cast on your skin, I would recommend Korean sun lotions! Korean skincare is so effective and affordable, especially when it comes to SPF. Most Korean SPFs are factor 50 which is what you want for maximum protection. I highly recommend Purito’s Centella Green Level Unscented Sun lotion and Etude House’s Sunprise Daily lotion.
Next week I’ll be posting about the different types of sun screen and how to apply your SPF to make sure you’re getting the most out of your skincare! If you’ve found this post helpful, please comment below or share; I really appreciate it!
If you’re into skincare, you might be asking yourself why your skin is still rough, flaky and irritated even though you’re exfoliating and using hydrating and moisturising skincare products. Well, I’m about to give you 5 reasons why your skin is irritated that you might not have considered before!
There are lots of reasons why your skin might be irritated (no matter what you do to it!). Irritated skin can have dry, flaky patches as well as redness and small irritation bumps. It can be totally frustrating to have irritated skin, but it is usually possible to treat at home. When your skin is irritated, scale back your skincare routine to the most essential steps. You don’t want to be trying any new products nor doing too much exfoliation. Just cleanse your skin (double cleanse at night), then follow it up with a moisturiser with ceramides or madecassoside which will help repair the skin, and then apply SPF (during the day). This is all you need to help protect the skin and give it what it needs to heal and recover.
Here are the 5 reasons why your skin is irritated!
1) You’re being too rough with your skin
Often, skin irritation is self-inflicted. We can do a lot of damage to our skin without realising by being too rough with it!
Double cleansing is really important for getting all our makeup off and getting our skin really clean at night, but I wouldn’t recommend using makeup wipes for this. I outline this in more detail in my skincare guide which you can find here.
Makeup wipes are really rough on the skin, and they’re not very effective at removing our makeup which means we have to do a lot of rubbing (especially around the extra-sensitive eye area) to get all our makeup off. This can of course irritate the face. Instead of makeup wipes, I recommend using a nice cleansing balm or cleansing oil which you massage into the face to breakdown your makeup and then rinse it off. Plus, they’re less wasteful so they’re better for the environment!
Also, when you’re washing your face, be gentle! Use lukewarm water rather than hot water and I swear you’ll see a huge difference overnight! Hot water is very drying to the face, so using slightly cooler water can really help keep your skin balanced.
Another important point for when washing your face is that there’s no need to rub too hard, and if you use a facial sponge or cloth, don’t pull at your skin! Be gentle with your face when washing it.
Pillowcases can also be responsible for sensitising our skin. If you think you might have sensitive skin, consider switching to a satin or silk pillowcase because these are a lot softer on the skin. I have recently started placing a satin hair scarf over my pillow and my skin and face feel so much softer!
2) You might be sensitive to fragrance
Many skincare products are fragranced with natural or artificial fragrance. I do enjoy fragrance in my skincare because it adds a nice refreshing or luxurious element do doing my skincare routine, but I’m aware that they can be irritating to the skin! For this reason, I try to buy unfragranced products where possible.
If you notice that your skin is irritated, try checking out your skincare products to see which ones contain fragrance. You can try not using them for about a month to see if your skin gets less irritated. Artificial fragrance is usually listed as ‘fragrance’, but natural fragrance is harder to spot. Keep an eye out for essential oils because these are used to add fragrance to a product naturally.
Many people avoid chemical fragrance and opt for essential oils in their products instead, but really, essential oils aren’t great for our delicate facial skin. Essential oils can be very sensitising and drying, so they’re best used on the body rather than the face. If you’re worried about fragrance in your skincare, I would cut out both artificial and natural fragrance.
3) You might be trying too many new skincare products
There is so much skincare out there now that it can be really tempting to try everything and have really long, extensive skincare routines. There isn’t anything wrong with trying new skincare products and ingredients, but it’s important to not overload the skin. Our skin is quite delicate and might not be able to handle too many different products at the same time.
When introducing a new skincare product into your routine, make sure you test it on a small patch of skin 24 hours before using it all over your face for the first time. This is a really great way to make sure a product isn’t irritating to your skin. For this reason, it’s important to not have loads of skincare products in your routine, because if you get irritation from your new products, you’ll have no idea which one it is!
It’s also important to bear in mind that it takes about a month to see the effects of a new skincare product, so when you start trying a new one, stick with it!
4) You could be over-exfoliating
Exfoliation is a great way to get smooth, glowing skin- when done sparingly! To exfoliate, you can use physical or chemical exfoliants such as lactic acid, glycolic acid and malic acid. For a full breakdown on how to use chemical exfoliators click here.
I personally recommend chemical exfoliants over physical exfoliants like sugar scrubs, because the exfoliating particles in many face scrubs are way too rough and have sharp edges which can irritate the skin. Also, many scrubs contain microplastics which are polluting to the environment.
If you use exfoliators, make sure to only use them 1-3 times a week. If you use a scrub, make sure it’s not too rough. When using a chemical exfoliator make sure it’s not irritating your skin. If it is, consider using it less frequently or using one that is a lower percentage (making it less strong).
5) You might be mixing skincare ingredients that don’t go together
Although most skincare ingredients are compatible with others, there are some which you shouldn’t mix. For example, vitamin C and retinol should not be used at the same time, as combining them can cause irritation on your skin. I outline which skincare products don’t go together here! Check it out for more information 🙂
I hope this post helps you identify why your skin is still irritated no matter what you do! Please subscribe to my blog below, and leave me a comment; activity on my blog helps me continue to do what I love.
Hey there! In this post I’m going to be talking about how to find plastic free beauty products in the mainstream! It can be really difficult to find plastic free skincare and makeup options but believe me; they’re out there!
Keep reading to find out some key tips for finding eco-friendly beauty products, and some plastic free recommendations of mine.
Why plastic free?
If you’re here reading this post, I assume you already know why it’s a great idea to try and replace some of our plastic beauty products with plastic free or low-plastic alternatives. But if you don’t know what it’s all about, you can find out here.
For a long time now, plastic has been the norm. Plastic in and of itself isn’t a bad thing; it’s a fantastically versatile material that has so many forms and uses- and it’s a cheap material. For this reason it’s everywhere, and it’s hard to find products that don’t come in plastic (and this includes beauty!).
Although plastic is very versatile and cheap, it’s bad for the planet. Some plastics can be recycled, but many can’t, and the majority of recyclable plastics AREN’T recycled!
Of all the plastic ever produced, only 9% has ever been recycled world-wide (source: National Geographic).
This means that most of the plastic which we use for our beauty products, cleaning products, food packaging etc is either incinerated, buried underground, sits in landfills or ends up in the ocean. All of these outcomes are harmful to the environment. The burning of waste is a huge contributor to global warming, and plastic waste is damaging to animals which is why I personally am trying to reduce my plastic consumption and opt for less harmful, more recyclable materials.
Some great materials to look out for instead of plastic are glass and tin. These are easy to recycle which is why they’re great alternatives. All we have to do is to rinse them and set them into the recycling bin!
It’s becoming more and more common to see beauty products in tins and glass jars and bottles. However, aluminium tubes (like the kind used for medicated creams) are often not recyclable as it’s not possible to rinse them out before recycling.
Here are my 5 top tips to finding plastic free beauty products
1) Check out your favourite beauty brands to see if they have any eco-friendly options.
It’s always great to start with brands that you already know and trust. Sometimes, you’ll get lucky and discover they carry products that are in eco-friendly packaging! For example, I recently noticed that The Body Shop have quite a few products that have very little plastic packaging.
2) Try to support small eco-friendly brands
I highly recommend supporting eco-friendly brands (especially when they’re not very well-known), as these guys could do with our support more than the bigger brands! I think as a consumer it’s really nice to put your money into brands that really care about the causes you believe in!
3) Be ready to shop around
I will warn you now: Not every plastic free or low-waste option is a winner! Sometimes it can take a while before you find that new favourite product- but stick with it!
4) Ask around
When I’m looking to replace one of my beauty products with plastic free options, I always ask my family and friends if they know of one that comes in little to no plastic packaging. This way, you find options that you might not have found otherwise and you also raise conversation on shopping plastic free!
Here are some plastic free or low-waste skincare options!
I’ve seen cleansing balms come in glass jars and metal tins before! I’m currently testing out The Body Shop’s Chamomile Cleansing Balm (tin packaging), and I would like to try Beauty by Ané’s Cleansing balm (glass jar).
Likewise, Revolution Beauty have recently released a cleansing oil that comes in a glass bottle (with a plastic pump). I’m trying this one soon!
There are several options for plastic free facial cleansers. I always repurchase Carbon Theory’s Charcoal Cleansing bar (for my review of this one, check out this post) which comes wrapped in paper. Face Theory and Revolution beauty also make facial cleansers that come in a glass bottles with a plastic pump.
It’s easy to find serums in plastic free or low-waste packaging as many brands opt for glass bottles and glass droppers anyway as these protect the ingredients well from UV rays. A brand which packages all of their serums in glass is The Ordinary, sold under Deciem. I really love this brand and I have written several reviews of their products recently. To give these a read click here!
It’s a bit tricky to find facial moisturisers that are low-waste or plastic free. This is because using a squeezy tube helps to keep bacteria out of your product. You could look out for glass bottles with a pump or glass or tin jars. Face Theory carries a couple of facial moisturisers in glass jars with tin lids! Also, you could opt for facial oils such as rosehip oil and squalane oil which are easy to find in glass bottles with a pump or dropper. For example, Lyonsleaf and The Ordinary carry some great facial oils.
For the body, it’s really easy to find plastic free moisturisers, as you can be less picky about the ingredient list. What I mean here is that you wouldn’t want to use something too heavy for the face, whereas this is just right for the body! I was recently gifted Lyonsleaf body moisturisers and I really enjoyed them (to read a review of their whole range check out this post), and you can also make your own body moisturisers really easily! I enjoy making my own because it’s fun and it’s nice to know exactly what’s in your products. If you’d like to make one but you don’t know where to start, here is a recipe.
I haven’t found a plastic free SPF yet but I will update this post when I do find one. Please comment below if you know of one!
It’s relatively easy to find plastic free lip balms. Even humble Vaseline is a great plastic free option. If you’re looking for something more moisturising though, check out Literary Lip Balms. Their stuff is really cute and is really good for the lips.
Here are some plastic free or low-waste makeup options!
For mascara, you can try cake mascara. Cake mascara is the OG type of mascara that was used before the 1960s. This is a thicker type of mascara which comes in a tin. To use cake mascara, take a reusable mascara wand (or recycle one from an old mascara tube) and roll it gently in the tin until it is covered. Then brush it over your lashes like normal. Clean Faced Cosmetics on Etsy make 2 different types of plastic free mascara, one of which is cake-mascara in a tin and the other is a liquid mascara in a glass jar.
Here are some plastic free or low-waste haircare options!
It can be tricky to find plastic free haircare! Nevertheless, Anita Grant produces shampoos and conditioners that come in a glass bottle with a pump, and the Afro Hair and Skin Company also produces some of these as well as an eco-friendly hair butter. These two brands also make shampoo bars (and so does Lush); which are shampoos in solid bar form. These are great plastic-free and zero-waste options as they don’t need to come in packaging.
I’m very excited to share these two eco-friendly haircare brands which focus on afro haircare! Seeing as this is a black-run blog that tries to be as inclusive as possible, it makes me really happy to shed some light on some plastic free options that are designed with black people in mind.
I know that it takes time to find zero-waste, low-waste or plastic free options, but finding new products and brands which are eco-friendly is a fun process! It might not be possible to find eco-friendly versions of everything you’re looking for; but that’s ok. The main thing is that we’re trying!
I personally still have many plastic products in my collection, but I think it’s good that I’m always trying to support smaller brands and eco-friendly brands where possible.
This post is a review of The Ordinary Squalane Cleanser. If you’d like to find out if this oil-based cleanser is worth the money, keep on reading!
Who are The Ordinary?
The Ordinary are a fuss-free, super affordable skincare brand that focuses on making great skincare accessible. Their products are around £4 to £10 (super affordable!), and they have dozens of different products for different skin types and skin needs.
Because of this, it’s easy to get overwhelmed when wanting to try some of their products, which is why I’m highlighting and reviewing some of their products here on my blog.
So far, I’ve had a really great experience with this brand. Some of their things don’t work for my skin at all, but others have become staples in my skincare routine.
I have previously reviewed their Alpha Arbutin serum, which you can check out here!
For reference: I have combination acne-prone skin.
What are oil cleansers?
Oil cleansers are cleansers that contain no water; they only contain plant oils or synthetic oils. They can be made of many different plant oils such as sunflower oil, rosehip oil and squalane oil (like this one!). Synthetic oils aren’t necessarily bad, but some aren’t biodegradable. This means they won’t ever break down, which makes them really polluting to the planet! In order to be a bit more eco-friendly, check the ingredients of your cleanser before purchase to make sure they are environment-safe.
Oil cleansers are usually used before water-based cleansers (such as foam or gel cleansers), but if you have dry skin, you can use an oil cleanser as your main cleanser. The method of using two cleansers is called ‘double cleansing’, and it is a great way to make sure you’re really cleansing your skin well. In fact, you can use an oil cleanser to remove all your makeup!
To use an oil cleanser, rub the oil onto your dry skin. Massage in small circles, and then add some water to your hands and continue to massage a little bit, then rinse! After this, follow up with a water-based cleanser to properly cleanse your skin. For a complete breakdown on how to double cleanse, check out my skincare guide.
About this cleanser
This is an oil cleanser that contains a high percentage of squalane oil, a really nice moisturising oil. I personally love using a squalane oil on my face at night, after using a water-based moisturiser, as it really helps lock the rest of my skincare in.
This cleanser comes in a plastic tube. I am constantly looking for plastic-free skincare options, so for this reason, I would not repurchase this one. It’s really difficult to squeeze out all the cleanser for the tube, so to use it all up, I would cut the tube to get the last bits out!
I really love the texture of this cleanser. It feels like a gel which then turns into an oil on the skin. You do need to use quite a bit of it to do the whole face though, which is definitely a draw back for me.
As all of The Ordinary’s products are, this cleanser is unfragranced and has no noticeable scent. This is actually great for your skin, as fragrance can be irritating for a lot of people.
Does the cleanser work well?
I think this is a good oil cleanser. Although you need to use quite a bit of it to cleanse the whole face, it really works in getting your makeup off. It breaks down makeup and mascara quite well (although I sometimes have to use micellar water to get off all my waterproof mascara), and it emulsifies really nicely. When you add a bit of water to it, it turns milky immediately, making it super easy to remove.
My favourite thing about this cleanser is how it makes my skin feel after using it. It leaves my skin feeling really moisturised and soft! This is how I was introduced into how nice squalane makes your skin feel, and now I use it all the time. However, for this reason, I wouldn’t recommend this cleanser to people with oily skin, unless you double cleanse afterwards to remove the oils from the skin.
The cleanser is so affordable, it’s hard not to fall in love.
Would I recommend this?
I would recommend this cleanser to anyone looking for an affordable first cleanser, or an oil-based cleanser. For the price, this is a fantastic, no frills cleanser that leaves your skin cleansed and soft as anything.
I personally won’t be repurchasing this one as I have some plastic-free ones that I want to test out. However, if they ever started selling it in a tin or jar, I would buy that straight away!
I hope you find this review helpful! If you do, please subscribe to my blog below!