Hello real world, hello acne. I’ve shared my acne story on the blog before. It wasn’t until after high school and into college that I every experienced any real acne. Now? It’s even worse! Wether it’s changing hormones, new real-world stressed or environmental factors, I’ve been in a battle the past few months to revamp my acne-fighting routine to fit my new skin situation. After sifting through some terrible products and mediocre purchases, I finally landed on the five best acne products for my skin (AKA the diamonds in the rough).
*When trying out new products of any kind, I recommend switching over one at a time so you can better gauge which products are actually giving you results. If you try five new products at the same time, then find yourself having better skin, you may be attributing all of your new products to your recent success, wasting money and not giving credit where credit is due.
So, after a long process, here’s what’s worked best for me:
Hey guys! Today I am happy to introduce a very special guest blogger, Nimi Popat from Hair Care Square. I’m super excited to have Nimi on the blog today while I am busy starting finals and going to job interviews. No fear, I’ll be posting a video on my YouTube channel this Friday featuring my favorite office/interview looks, and I will be back on the blog next week.
This is my first post for Ali in Bloom, and I am very excited to write for you all. Since you guys don’t know me, I am Nimi Popat, and I am a beauty blogger and a big time hair care freak. I am usually experimenting with various hair care products and masks. One secret ingredient I have to share today with you guys that I am crazy about is lemons.
Yes, you heard right. Lemons form a big part of my hair care routine; they are really rich in Vitamin C and antioxidants. Being a girl who cares for her skin, hair and body way too much, I am absolutely in love with lemons.
Lemons can be used for hair care in a lot of ways and for almost everything- getting rid of dandruff or growing your hair, adding that extra volume, straightening, removing product build up, revitalizing your dirty strands, or even bleaching your hair. It does it all.
DIY Lemon Mask for Hair Growth
If you have always wanted to have hair like Rapunzel, you need to try this cool DIY trick. This is a bit slow in results but totally worth it.
Lemon juice – 3 tsp
Olive oil – 3 tsp
Method: Take 3 teaspoons of lemon juice and mix it with 3 teaspoons of olive oil. Apply this and let it stay overnight. Wash it off the next day.
DIY Lemon Mask for Lightening Your Hair Color
Have you had an experience where your hair color has gone horribly wrong and you have to face the world with it? Well not anymore. Try this mask, and it will help lighten your hair color. It doesn’t always have to be used for correction either; I use it for adding highlights to my hair.
Lemon juice – 1 cup
Water – 1 cup
Honey – 1 tsp
Method: Dilute 1 cup of lemon juice in 1 cup of water. Add honey and mix well. Now pour this into a spray bottle and spray it onto your hair. Leave it on for 2 hours and go for a walk in the sunlight. You will see beautiful, lightened hair.
DIY Lemon Mask for Dandruff
If you have an itchy, flaky scalp, this is the best mask for you. You will see excellent results the very first time you apply it.
Yogurt – 4 tsp
Lemon juice – 2 tsp
Method: Take 4 teaspoons of yogurt (unsweetened and plain) and add 2 teaspoons of lemon juice. Mix well and apply to your hair, concentrating on your scalp. Leave it on for 2 hours. Then wash it off with water, followed by mild shampoo and conditioner.
DIY Lemon Mask to Remove Build Up and Detoxify Your Hair and Scalp
If you use a lot of hair products or use too much heat on your hair for styling, then you should detox at least once a month.
Lemon juice – 2 tsp
Baking soda – 2 tsp
Method: Take both the ingredients in equal quantity and mix well. Apply it on your hair and concentrate more on your scalp. Leave in for 15 mins; then rinse with water.
DIY Lemon Mask for Split Ends
If you have a problem with split ends from straighten or curling your hair and you don’t want to continually trim your ends, you have an alternative. Try this, and you will see improved ends.
Lemon juice – 2 tsp
Coconut oil – 4 tsp
Method: Take lemon juice and mix it with coconut oil. Rub the mixture on your ends daily for a month and see the results.
All of these masks are amazing remedies that really work, but the key is patience. It may take couple of applications to get the desired results.
Since these masks contains lemons, you may experience a little burning sensation when applied to your scalp, but that is completely normal. Make sure to wash off the mask if the sensation gets too strong, however. Everyone has different sensitivity levels.
Wouldn’t we all like to wake up and find that our acne cleared over night? I would! With end-of-the-year stress hitting hard, my face has been breaking out badly. But the reality of the situation is that getting rid of acne overnight just isn’t realistic (although keep reading for a great product that clears up redness quickly!). Most dermatologist will tell you it takes 4 to 8 weeks to achieve glowing, clear skin. So, here is my advice for what to do in those 4 to 8 weeks to clear your acne:
Eat Healthy & Drink Water
Food affects a lot more than just our weight and energy levels; what you eat can also have a big effect on the health of your skin. I could go on and on about what foods we should and should not be eating to maintain (or achieve!) healthy skin, but there is a ton of information out there on the internet for you already. I’ll give you a quick summary: just eat clean. Eat your fruits and vegetables and natural foods; skip the sugar, refined carbs, salty potato chips, and other processed foods. Your skin will thank you! While you’re at it, don’t skimp on the water. Drinking water helps flush toxins from your body, preventing them from building up in places like underneath your skin.
Keeping your skin clean requires keeping everything that comes into contact with your skin clean as well. Wash your makeup brushes, sheets, pillow cases… and hair. If you’re skipping showers or regular cleaning sessions, you aren’t doing your skin any favors. In fact, you’re leaving excess oil on your face and spreading bacteria. If you are prone to acne, be sure to wash your sheets, pillow cases, and makeup brushes once a week. I know it sounds like a lot, but it will be worth it when your skin begins to clear up! Set a routine; write it in your planner that you will wash these items every Sunday… or whichever day works best for you.
Oxy 28 Day Challenge
To help you stay on track with your goal to clear skin, Oxy created an app that will change the way you take care of your skin. After downloading the app, you enter in your age and current level of acne, and you receive a personalized acne fighting regimen consisting of three products. For example, I use the Daily Defense Skin Clearing Cleansing Pads, Maximum Action Rapid Treatment Sensitive Skin Face Wash, and Maximum Action Rapid Spot Treatment. Over the course of 28 days, the app will send you daily tips and alerts to remind you to use your products and help you fight your acne. My favorite part about this program: if the Oxy products don’t work for you, you get your money back!
I get super nervous when I think about buying a new health/beauty item, because so often they claim to do things they really don’t. That’s why I love this opportunity. There’s no doubt that no two people have the same exact skin and acne, and our skins won’t all react the same to specific products. Now, here is a company that understands that. If you want to learn more about the Oxy 28 Day Challenge, you can find Oxy on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or check out their website.
Don’t Over Do It
As much as we try to fight oil, our skin also needs its natural oils, so washing too much can actually turn into a bad thing. Use your products according to the packaging and don’t over do it. If you find yourself wanting to use the product more often than prescribed because your skin is feeling oily, carry oil absorbing pads with you during the day. This is a great way to prevent over drying of the skin.
A lot of acne medicated products can be very drying – even when not overused. Oxy even addresses this on their packaging, so make sure you have a good facial moisturizer on hand to use after washing your face – emphasis on facial. You don’t want to spend all of this time treating your skin only to lather on pore-clogging, oily lotion afterward. I personally use the Theraplex Hydrolotion that my dermatologist recommended to me, but if you are ever in doubt, consult your own dermatologist on what would work best for your skin.
So, there you have it – my tips for clear skin. The most important part of all: don’t rush your skin recovery; it takes time… I know, I know. Graduation, prom, summer, and important interviews are all right around the corner, but if you start now, you still have time and will be picture perfect for prom…
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Oxy . The opinions and text are all mine.
This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Burt’s Bees. All opinions are 100% mine.
I love makeup just as much as the next girl. Who doesn’t feel energized trying out a bright new shade of lipstick? For the everyday, though, I like to keep things natural, focusing on enhancing my features. That involves nude lipstick, contouring, foundation, neutral eyeshadow and a little bit of mascara (okay, a lot of mascara- that’s the most important part of my beauty routine; without it, I look like I’m 10!).
My Natural, Everyday Makeup Routine
First, I apply my Almay Clear Complexion Liquid Foundation using the Sonia Kashuk Flat Top Brush. After my trip to Florida, I am using 400 Neutral, but I generally use 400 in the summer and 300 Naked in the winter. I’ve mentioned previously that I use Covergirl foundation (here and here), but as of recently I’ve wanted something with a little more coverage, so I switched to Almay. It has more coverage, but it is still just what I would consider medium coverage- not too thick, not too thin.
Second, if I have any blemishes that my foundation did not cover, I like to apply my Neutrogena SkinClearing Mineral Powder. I wouldn’t say it has actually cleared my skin, but it hasn’t made it worse, and it provides an extra layer of coverage, so I continue to use it.
Third, I contour. I use the Smashbox Step-by-Step Contour Kit. Contouring can seem like a time consuming process, but after you learn how to do it, it really isn’t! It can definitely fit into an everyday routine. If you’re not sure how to contour, here is a great tutorial that shows exactly how I do my own.
Then, I apply my eyeshadow. For a natural, pretty, glowing look, I like to use the Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette- Venus in the inside corner of my eye and w.o.s on the lid. These colors are very neutral, leaving my makeup looking natural and glowing. The combination of these two shades along with the contouring adds dimension and interest to my face without looking overdone.
Then, I move on to my eyelashes. I use a basic eyelash curler, pumping about five times to achieve the desired look. Then I apply Maybelline’s Lash Stiletto Ultimate Length Mascara in Black (not waterproof- find out why).
Last, I do my lips. In keeping with the everyday, natural look, I use Burt’s Bees Nile Nude Lipstick. Burt’s Bees new line of lipsticks is one of my new favorites for a number of reasons. It’s creamy and lightweight, made of all natural ingredients (Moringa, Raspberry Seed Oil, Beeswax, Vitamin E). The all natural ingredients make it so healthy for your lips. The Moringa oil hydrates your lips, and the raspberry seed oil improves skin elasticity. On top of all of that, there are 14 different shades available, making it perfect for any occasion. You can pick any of the shades up at none other than (drumroll please) Target! If you are looking to glam this look up a little, I suggest Scarlet Soaked. If you want a flirty, fun look, I would go for Magenta Rush. What is your favorite shade?
As a side note, I want to give a shoutout to the Burt’s Bees Clarifying Toner that I picked up a while back (if you follow me on Snapchat, you already saw it!), because it has done wonders for my skin. When I use the toner after using my GlamGlow face mask, my skin looks heavenly! And that’s saying something coming from a girl who has been dealing with some unwanted zits lately. So while I am mentioning Burt’s Bees and my love for all natural, healthy-for-my-skin products, I wanted to mention their toner in case anyone else has been feeling a little bit down in the dumps about their skin lately too. Next product I want to try: Burt’s Bees BB Cream, which “evens skin tone, moisturizes, protects with SPF 15, reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, visibly firms, conceals, smoothes, perfects skin and illuminates.”