Monday, August 25, 2008

Rx for Brown Skin Worth a Try

While trying to figure out why I'm noticing so much more hyperpigmentation after breakouts, and it's taking longer for them to fade, I stumbled upon the following buzzworthy bit of science:

"As brown skin matures, skin cells become sticky and don't rejuvenate properly." (source)

Meaning, my skin's ability to exfoliate and heal itself is diminishing with age. So what's a brown-skinned lady whose getting older by the minute supposed to do to get even skin tone and get rid of those pesky dark spots left behind by zits? Rx for Brown Skin seems to have some great products that might help.

Rx for Brown Skin is a skin care line designed specifically for women with, you guessed it, brown skin, but it also addresses the needs of women with yellow and olive skin. The products are heavily based on the natural healing powers of hyaluronic acid, soy, and pomegranate, and free of irritating chemicals like hydroquinone (which is found in most OTC skin bleaching agents and makes dark skin peel unevenly). I've tried two products from this line, the Bright and Even Exfoliating Cleanser ($21) and the Naturally Flawless Advanced Botanical Brightener ($36).

After using the products for about 4 weeks, I've noticed that my dark spots are no longer noticeable and most definitely do not show up in photographs. Both products were gentle on my skin and gave me an overall smoother appearance. Of the two products, I prefer the Exfoliating Cleanser as it helped the Brightener do it's job better and left my skin feeling clean down to the pores. The Brightener on it's own didn't seem to work without the help of the Exfoliating Cleanser, it seems these two products need to be used in tandem to reduce the appearance of hyperpigmentation (which was my main goal).

I can still see faint remnants of the spots if I look really close, as in, with a magnifying mirror, but they're not obvious at first glance anymore. Hopefully, with continued use of the products, they'll soon vanish forever.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Therapy for your Tresses

The first time I used the Frizz-Ease by John Frieda brand was around junior high or high school when the brand's oh-so-famous Frizz-Ease hair serum came out. Remember those before and after pictures of the girls with totally frizzed out hair in the before photo and completely straight and silky hair in the after photo? I do because I remember putting all my heart into those pictures and then being sorely disappointed when the serum did not do a thing for my unruly hair.

Well fast forward about twelve years - after my last experience I was definitely suspicious when I heard about John Frieda's new Frizz Ease Creme Serum Overnight Repair Formula through the blogvine. I thought I'd give it a shot since I haven't had much luck with hair products recently and surprisingly, I like it!

The Repair Formula is meant to be used overnight in the hair - I would describe it as a cross between a hair mask (that you don't have to rinse it out until you next shampoo) and an intense leave-in conditioner. Since I'm a rebel, I don't limit its use to night and put a little of the cream in during the day to tame my hair in this crazy humidity.

I wouldn't say its a miracle worker, but it does a great job of moisturizing and softening my hair, especially after I use heat tools. Also, as a cream treatment (as opposed to a bona fide styling product) it does a pretty good job of separating my curls, most likely due to the great moisturizing ability.

Give this product a shot if your hair is feeling somewhat dry and coarse from the heat, chlorine, etc. this summer and need a shot of moisture in your hair regimen.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

One Bob Does Not Suit All....

Years before Kareena, Bipasha and Priyanka invaded Bollywood, I always thought Sonali Bendre was one of the most beautiful ladies in India...with a seriously enviable head of the most shiny, straight black hair.

So, you can imagine my dismay when I saw this picture of Sonali with a bob and a bob dyed an unflattering reddish brown hue at that!! When I see this picture, I think of all the times my mom has said that its better not to mess with one's God-given features...and this time I think she's right.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Keeping it Natural....

Often times when you hear about Hollywood ladies doing "natural" makeup or hair, the look is anything but natural! So called "natural" faces are slapped with foundation, powder, eye shadow and the works and supposedly "natural" hair is ironed, curled, etc.

So it was nice to see Salma Hayek step out a few days ago at the Vicky Cristina Barcelona premiere in what really looks like a natural makeup and hair look. Her hair has the type of volume and even a bit of frizz that curly haired girls usually experience in the summer.

Basically, it looks like she did her own hair and makeup which I love!!

Sunday, August 3, 2008

My Favorite DIY Mask: Brightening, Firming and Moisturizing

These days, fears of the "R" word has kept me steering clear of my favorite expensive beauty stores in hopes of saving some cash. At the same time though, I've been attempt to indulge myself with some less expensive beauty measures. So I thought I'd share one of my favorite, super cheap, DIY masks with readers.

Here's the recipe for my easy, DIY Brightening, Firming and Moisturizing Mask made with lemon juice (brightens), egg whites (firms temporarily) and honey (moisturizes):

1. Cracking one egg, separate the egg yolk from the egg whites and place the egg whites in a bowl.
2. Put anywhere from a squirt of honey to a teaspoon of honey (depending on how moisturizing you want the mask to be) into the bowl.

3. Squeeze a half of a lemon into the bowl.

4. Mix all the ingredients well. It may get a little frothy due to the egg whites but that is normal.

5. Apply the mixture to face and neck with your fingers or a brush. Leave the mask on until dry, around 10 to 12 minutes. Wash off the mask thoroughly and apply your favorite moisturizer.

I love this mask before going out at night or anytime I feel like my face just needs something to wake it up and look more alive!