Sunday, January 18, 2015

Beauty Product Empties

Even though nobody cares, I'm going to keep reviewing beauty products I finish up. Mostly I'm interested in skin and hair care, rather than makeup. Other than mascara I have literally never finished a container of makeup. It's not that I don't use it, just a little bit goes a long way!
This Anew Genetics eye treatment was an eye cream sample I picked up 5 of at Walgreens or something? Somehow I got 5 of them. It's an Avon product that is marketed at people more concerned about wrinkles than I am. Moderately good reviews on Amazon/makeupalley, but Paula's Choice/beautypedia gives it nothing but hate. Even though I tend to agree with Paula on not believing a specific eye cream is necessary, in this small sample it felt really nice and thick and moisturizing. No other effects.

On the other end of the age concerns spectrum, I have had this travel-sized Clean and Clear Morning Burst Facial Scrub for ages. I actually think it kind of irritated my skin when it got older, but don't remember that when I was younger. However it spent a really long time in travel-product-only purgatory and my skin had more acne when I was younger and I didn't really bother with it, so who knows what effect it had then. You know how skin care people are always saying that the natural grains that some products use to exfoliate, like sugar and apricot seed bits and so forth are too harsh for your delicate baby face skin, and you should use plastic microbeads? Apparently microbeads are making their way into the waterways (duh) and it's somewhat of a problem in Lake Michigan. They get in the lake, the fish eat them, the plastic in them soaks up all kinds of "toxins" (like what? it doesn't say) and then we eat the fish/plastic, etc. They may have already banned them in Illinois. That's all well and good with me, but the oceans are already full of tiny bits of plastic from manufacturing by-products and post-consumer waste. So, fun fact. As it turns out there are other "natural" alternatives for physical exfoliating, like oatmeal, but also there's chemical exfoliation, which is a whole new (amazing) world. I recently did a lot of reading about chemical exfoliants, and am trying out this one which is a baby step into the world of chemical exfoliants (cheap and very gentle). It feels pointlessly watery going onto the skin but I do believe it made my skin feel softer and smoother right away. I haven't used it regularly due to my irregular housing situation, so the jury's still out if it helps with skin tone or mild acne.
You may or may not already know that this product, Clean and Clear Advantage Acne Spot Treatment, is also a chemical exfoliant. Yes, salicylic acid is commonly known as BHA or beta-hydroxy acid, although from my reading I understand it isn't technically a BHA but it's close enough and that's what everyone calls it so let's just go with it. The chemical exfoliant that I'm trying is an alpha-hydroxy acid or AHA. You can read more about it in the links provided. Anyway the main difference for your skin is BHA/salicylic acid is mostly in acne products because it is able to get inside the pores and some ability to kill the acne-causing bacteria. However in my experience this tube did not do shit. It stands to reason that salicylic acid products would work best when daily applied to the whole area that is blemish-prone instead of a spot treatment (which this was) in order to keep those pores cleared. And it is my experience that once you do get a spot you must kill it with benzoyl peroxide (and/or hydrocolloid bandages/Nexcare patches which are a whole other -- disgusting and awesome -- subject entirely). However, lots of people find salicylic spot treatments effective, and it's possible this was old or the pH was off. Here's a breakdown of the differences between these two ingredients which are the main ingredients of basically any standard acne treatment. My skin isn't too sensitive so I can nuke it with 10% benzoyl peroxide for a couple days if I have some spots and then go back to my all the lotion all the time routine. This intense moisturizing routine is dialed up to 11 in the winter, and I really feel like it keeps my skin clearer than using products aimed at acne, which are generally aimed at dry skin. So I recently gave away all the leftover cleansers for oily, acne-prone skin to a friend with oilier skin and will keep trying products for dry skin.