Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Kiehl's Abyssine Serum +

A couple of months ago, I was at Target when I spotted Kiehl's Abyssine Serum. Though I'd had good results with Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Protective Recovery Complex, I didn't want to use it anymore. Since the Advanced Night Repair healed the dry patches I had, I felt it was time to try another serum. I also didn't like the way Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair created a somewhat sticky film/coating on my skin. Thus, it was definitely a product made primarily for night time skin care, though the site claimed it could also be worn during the day (something only severely dry skin could get away with). So, I rotated the Estee Lauder out and opted for the Kiehl's. Since then, I've been wearing this both during the day and at night to sleep.

Surprisingly, the Kiehl's isn't far from the price range of Estee Lauder. The Abyssine Serum is $44.00 for 1.7 oz. However, it will still last you around 4-5 months.

The Abyssine Serum is the newest addition to Kiehl's Abyssine line. If you peruse the site, you'll see they have a eye and face cream, amongst other things. Since the serum is a recent launch, I actually couldn't find any reviews on it.

Like most serums, this one claims to "help minimize the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and defend skin from free radical damage." However, what appealed to me was the ingredients Kiehl's incorporated for anti-aging and antioxidant properties:

"Our readily absorbent formula quickly penetrates skin to help diminish the signs of aging and strengthen and defen skin against environmental damage. Abyssine, a survivial molecule which thrives under the extreme conditions in hydrothermal ocean vents, helps soothe and protect skin. Combined with Corallina Extract, sourced from a mineral rich red alga with self-defensive properties, our formula helps reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles while helping to defend skin from free radical damage. Dermatologist tested for safety and gentleness and suitable for sensitive skin."

One thing that really impressed me about their website was that they post the ingredients for all their products! Saves me the trouble of typing it out :)


(click to enlarge)

What I really like about the Abyssine Serum is that it has a watery, almost milky consistency. It doesn't feel at all like your typical serum; it seems more like an emulsion, or liquidy moisturizer. I could smooth it all over my face, even onto my eye area, and it did not sting or leave my face feeling sticky at all. Since I like to apply products generously, I used one pump for each cheek, one for my T-zone, and two on my neck after cleansing and toning. After application, my skin felt instantly softer, hydrated, and silkier. It also seemed to help retain moisture in my skin, firming it slightly. After applying the serum, I added my regular moisturizer on top, as well as my regular sunscreen if I would be heading out.

Since this serum feels like an emulsion, it is great for a variety of skin types. Oily or combination skin will benefit from this because it is such a light yet potent moisturizer. It is also great for dry skin because it speeds the healing process.

Since I have young skin, I can't speak to whether this product works on existing wrinkles. I believe it is more of a preventative product which will increase the efficacy of the other products in the Abyssine line. If you already use and love Abyssine products, I would recommend applying this serum under the Abyssine creams.

One thing that might deter some people from purchasing this product is the plastic packaging. All of the Estee Lauder serums I've used thus far are packaged with glass, to preserve the quality of the product. But this is only a minor flaw. Fortunately, the bottle has a pump to prevent contamination.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Clarisonic Skin Care Brush - Week 6

My skin is slowly getting better after its horrific bout with MAC Prep + Prime SPF 50. The pores on my nose have actually gotten smaller and the whiteheads/blackheads are slowly disappearing, though I haven't used any peeling products.

However, my forehead is still dotted with some residual acne and inflamed comedones. Also, the weird acne/rash on my cheek which has been there for maybe a month is still there... I don't know what to do about that. They look like pink bumps, so if they are indeed pimples, the infections are probably pretty deep. I usually extract the sebum from my pimples, but I have a feeling if I pick at these they will scar.

Not much of an update this week, but hopefully my skin will be back to normal soon. In the meantime, I will gladly take suggestions on remedies for that rash on my cheek. :-(

Did everyone have a nice holiday?

Saturday, December 20, 2008

a rant

Today, I went to Nordstrom's to return a perfume. I stopped by the MAC counter because I wanted to see if they had any more Mineralize Skinfinishes in the shades I wanted left. When I asked the SA, "Hi, do you have any MSF's in So Ceylon, Petticoat, or Soft and Gentle right now?", she looked at me like I was crazy and said, "I have no idea what you're talking about."

What the heck?? How on earth are you working at MAC if you don't even know what "MSF" is, or even what product those shades are for?!?!


MAC Prep and Prime SPF 50

Since I used up all of my Oil of Olay Complete All Day Moisture Lotion SPF 15 sunscreen in mid-November, I've been on the prowl for a new sunscreen. The Oil of Olay sunscreen was my sunscreen staple since 8th grade. My mom actually bought me my first bottle (one day, she just randomly handed it to me and told me to start using it everyday--surprising, since she never had the skincare fanaticism I have since acquired). Growing up in Southern California, you get tan REALLY quickly, especially if your school is entirely outdoors. My skin didn't start becoming paler until 10th grade, when I chose an indoor PE elective. I have since discovered that the paler my skin is, the better I look, because my undertones are pretty sallow (when I tan, I look like the Crayola crayon "Maize"). So, it's important for me to use sunscreen to maintain my complexion.

However, since I have combination skin (oily T-zone, dry-normal cheeks), it's always been a challenge to find a high SPF sunscreen that won't turn me into an oilslick within 2 hours. Thus, I was attracted to MAC's Prep and Prime SPF 50. I've always wished that some company would have the genius and foresight to invite a primer with high SPF, which would eliminate an extra step (and layer of product) for us sleepyheads in the morning. Correct me if I'm wrong, but this Prep and Prime was the primer with the highest SPF I could find. It contains 16.10% zinc oxide and 7.50% octinoxate, along with oil absorbing powders, and the box indicates it's made in Japan, which is supposed to be on the cutting edge of sun care technology. Plus, everyone who tried it gave it rave reviews. I really could not find anything negative said about this product. So I thought I'd give it a try. But at $28.00 an ounce, compared to my $8-9 Oil of Olay (which was about 3.4 oz), it is appallingly more expensive. A third of the amount for three times the cost? You do the math.

The texture is hard to describe, but I'll do my best. It's white and super creamy--when I say "creamy," I don't mean it feels creamy like a normal face cream or lotion because it does have that sunblock texture. If you've ever used Coppertone Water Babies, for example, or Neutrogena Dry Touch Sunscreen, the MAC consistency has a similar "greasiness" that's creamy at the same time. I probably squeezed out a pea sized amount for each section of my face--one on each cheek, one for my forehead, one for my chin and upper lip, one for my nose and eyes. Strangely enough, when I was rubbing it into my skin, the creamy consistency disappeared fairly quickly, as if the heat was melting the prep and prime into a "greasy" coating on my face, which felt like silicon. What I didn't like was that I felt like I was just pushing silicon around on my skin, rather than smoothing on a lotion. Thus, I couldn't tell if the SPF was being evenly distributed. However, the sunblock dried to a matte finish after I let it sink into my skin for maybe 10 minutes. (which means you have to wait awhile before applying makeup.) Also, I thought my skin had a soft focus glow to it, which I liked. I've read that the primer has light reflecting properties, so this is probably what gave my face that matte glow.

Well, aside from the nice matte finish, I didn't like this sunscreen because it completely broke me out! When I started this blog, I had horrible skin. On a scale of 1 - 10, with 1 being flawless skin and 10 being skin with pitted acne, maybe I ranked a 5 or 6? I didn't have moderate to severe acne, but I could not get rid of the comedones on my T-zone. Also, my nose pores were so huge, they looked like craters. I couldn't even remove the sebum in my nose pores with nose strips because the sebum was too large for the strips to pull out. So I would also use a blemish extractor to force out the sebum plugs on my T-zone, and inadvertently create scabs or scars in the process, which no amount of makeup could hide. It was really gross.

After making some changes to my skin routine a couple months ago, I was amazed to see how much my skin was improving. My comedones disappeared, my pores shrank, and I wasn't breaking out anymore. Then, I started using MAC Prep + Prime shortly before Thanksgiving (sometime between November 22nd--24th maybe?). By December 2nd (when I wrote my Clarisonic 3rd week update), I felt like this sunscreen had completely reversed all the improvement my skin had made. After using this sunscreen, I started breaking out a little on my forehead, then these pimples I've had on my cheek for awhile became inflamed again, then I started getting clogged pores on my upper lip too. By the third week of usage, my skin was a minefield of clogged pores and comedones.

I was still a bit in denial. I wasn't really sure if the Prep and Prime was to blame, or if it was my new MUFE HD Powder, since they're both full of silicon/silica. So I stopped using the HD Powder, but nothing really happened. I then thought maybe the Clarisonic wasn't cleansing properly, so I washed it out completely and continued to use the MAC Prep and Prime for the next two days. My skin got a tad better, but I was still getting newly formed comedones on my forehead. When I flew home on Tuesday, I didn't put on any sunscreen (mostly because I didn't have time...I do not advise being in an aircraft without sun protection since everyone around you keeps the windows open). I also didn't use it for the the next few days that I was at home (and indoors); as a result, nearly all my comedones started clearing up within only 2 days. However I can also see that it's going to take a while for my skin to get back to normal, because as the comedones go away, I'm left with these blemish scars.

Another thing to watch out for is, if you have normal to dry skin, this sunscreen might also be too drying for you. Though I applied a thin layer of my regular moisturizer underneath the prep and prime, at the end of the day, my cheeks and chin felt uncomfortably dehydrated. It also didn't prevent my T-zone's oiliness, because I still needed to blot. So in the end, this product didn't work on my oily T-zone or my dry/normal cheeks.

The Clarisonic is supposed to be able to remove up to 6 times more makeup than normal cleansing, so I highly doubt that there was still SPF on my skin after I washed my face everyday. I was going to experiment and add another cleansing step, DHC Cleansing Oil, to see if it would solve the problem. However I'm too lazy and scarred (literally) from this experience to put myself through something again that just does not work for me.

Here's the ingredients list. I see a lot of silicon:

Water, cyclopentasloxane, butylene glycol, peg-7 dimehicone, cyclohexasiloxane, dimethecone, phenyl trimethicone, vinyl dimethicone/methcone, silsequioxane crosspolymer, methyl gluceth-10, glycerin, dimethicone/ vinyl dimethicone crosspolymer, caffeine, tocepherol, sucrose, stearyl glycrrhetinate, cellulose acteate, glycyrrhetinate, cellulose acetate, methicone, PEG/PPG-19/19 Dimethicone, magnesium sulfate, silicia dimethyl silylate, silica, sorbic acid, phenoxyethanol, chlorphenesin

It's unfortunate that even though I exfoliate more than the typical person, I still broke out. I mean, I use the Clarisonic and the Clinique Turnaround...the pinnacle of cleansing and exfoliation. What more can I really do?
So, this post is really a counter to all those rave reviews out there. This product did seem to work for everyone else, so I'm not discouraging you from buying it. Just know that it has the potential to aggravate your skin. If you go to a MAC counter, ask for a sample, and test it on a small portion of your face for at least a week before committing to buy it.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Clarisonic Skin Care Brush - Week 5 (with a brief care guide)

If you've read up about or own a Clarisonic, you know already that the brush head is supposed to be discarded every 90-120 days. But with a brush head going for $25 each, that can get really expensive.

Also, if you read my previous post last week on the Clarisonic, you remember I was freaking out with the new breakouts on my forehead. Two days after I wrote the post, I felt that my Clarisonic seemed to be oscillating slower than usual...and it wasn't lathering my face wash very well. My face still felt waxy from moisturizer residue after I had cleansed it for the full minute.

So what the heck was going on? I was already pretty mad that I had broken out. I bought the Clarisonic with the intention of NOT having to deal with breakouts, especially during finals period (when everyone's personal hygiene routines get a little lazy, though I'd stuck to my face regimen). And now not only was I breaking out, but also the Clarisonic was malfunctioning? What bs!

Well, I speculated that perhaps the Clarisonic brush head was just dirty. After all, I'd been putting it twice daily on my face to slough off all the heavy moisturizer and SPF and makeup I wear. I even used it on my neck and decollete a couple times. Maybe the brush head was just clogged with all that gunk? After all, the only cleaning I'd done for the brush head was rinsing it with steaming hot water after I wash my face.

So, I filled a bowl with liquid detergent and water, and I left my brush head in there for 12-15 hours. When I got back home (after working on my papers in the campus center), I took it out of the bowl and rinsed it off with steaming hot water. I was ready to wash my face. And guess what? This trick COMPLETELY worked. As soon as I put the Clarisonic to my face, I could feel it oscillating ten times better than it had that morning. It felt just like how it had first felt on my face when I used it for the first time...a little scratchy, but still gentle. The next day when I woke up, my skin also looked a lot more glowy, and my blemishes had reduced in size.

It's been three days since I've been using my newly cleaned, Clarisonic brush head...and my blemishes are truly continuing to decrease in size. My comedones have disappeared! YAY!

So if you guys own a Clarisonic...I'm telling you to soak your brush heads in laundry detergent water once a week! From my own experiences, liquid detergent water works best to cleanse anything because it is gentle, but it still effectively and automatically lifts away debris, stains, and oils as the object soaks so you don't even have to scrub or massage the bristles. I'm not sure if this will help extend the life of the brush head past 90-120 days, but it will definitely maximize your Clarisonic experience. I'm honestly amazed that the folks at Sonicare/Clarisonic haven't addressed brush head cleansing, or come out with some brush cleanser to sucker people's wallets.

If you're unsure of how much liquid detergent to use...I suppose a good analogy is two tablespoons per 2 cups of water. You should put the detergent into your bowl first, and then pour really hot water on top of it to create foam and bubbles. If you drop the brush head in that mixture right after you wash your face in the morning, go to work or school, and then take it out at night right before you wash your face and go to sleep, that should be plenty of time for it to soak.

I wish I had the foresight to clean my brush head like this earlier, because now I'm wondering whether any of my skin care products absorbed into my skin under all that product still on my face...
So now that my Clarisonic issue is somewhat resolved, I'm going to try to figure out what exactly is causing me to break out.. it's funny how the products I'm using right now work for everyone else, but somehow not me. I'm pretty certain it was the MAC Prep + Prime SPF 50 now. I stopped using it for 2 days and now my skin is almost back to the way it was before. Maybe I just didn't wash it off properly at night? I'll give it one more shot and use better cleansers...and we'll see how that works out in my next review.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

utter craziness

I came home today, but I nearly overslept for my flight. Because of my stupidity, I didn't get any packing done and had to frantically stuff things into my suitcases within 30 minutes. I don't know if any of you have ever packed for 5 weeks in 30 minutes, but that sucked. I almost thought I forgot my Clarisonic charger at school, and was about to have a panic attack. I did forget a couple other things, though...I didn't pack enough clothes, so now I'll have to come up with clever outfits with my old clothes I've outgrown. Or buy new ones :P

I have 6 more papers to write by Friday. *sob*

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Clarisonic Skin Care Brush - Week 4

Since last week's update, my forehead has completely broken out in little bumps like it did all the time before I started using Estee Lauder Idealist.

This may be caused by a few things:

1. MAC Prep + Prime SPF 50?
2. Makeup For Ever HD Finishing Powder?

I also haven't mentioned yet that I stopped using Idealist when I started using the Clarisonic. I switched to Clinique Turnaround Concentrate, which is supposed to be comparable. Now I doubt Turnaround and the Clarisonic are causing me to break out, since the clogged pores/bumps started appearing after I began using the MAC sunscreen and MUFE finishing powder. I probably aggravated my pores by covering them up with Skinfood Mushroom BB cream.

I am still trying to figure out what broke out my skin. But what have I learned? THE CLARISONIC DOES NOT PREVENT BREAKOUTS!

That being said, I've decided to take the Clarisonic back to Sephora next month. I'm disappointed.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

New Vickery & Clarke Lip Balm

It started snowing today...first powder of the year! (Un)fortunately, the snow was so light that only parts of the ground were covered. I'm still waiting on that blizzard-like snow which covers everything in soft white cream...not looking forward to the part where the snow freezes into dirty ice chunks, though.

I went to Whole Foods today to pick up some nutritious munchies to get me through this last week of finals before I go home (and continue working on papers, gah). I bought 100% cranberry juice, blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries :) I'm planning on eating the berries for breakfast every morning, and drinking tons of cranberry-water and green tea. I'll let you guys know if this helps keep my skin healthy and radiant despite lack of sleep. Hopefully this will keep me from getting sick as well!

Anyway, as I was walking around in the snow today, all I could think about was whether the cold, windy air was drying out my skin...plus, my lips were so dry because I forgot my lip balm. I'm ALWAYS misplacing it...so when I dashed into CVS, I made a beeline for the cosmetics aisle.

I'm not picky about lip products, and I'll use just about anything, but I tend to prefer colorless lip balms or chap stick because I don't like putting pigment on my lips. When I was little, I used to think that wearing lipstick was awesome and I freely wore it out of the house (yes, I was obsessed with makeup as a little girl). To my chagrin, the grown-up-me came across these photos of myself in the 5th grade and my lips were painted BRIGHT ORANGE (this is when I had very tan skin, mind you) and I'm standing next to my bare faced, lipstick-less classmates. The only person in the picture who's wearing lip color besides me is my 40 something year old teacher. So embarrassing! I can't believe my parents didn't notice my vanity and force me to scrub my face before letting me out of the house. I hope no one else has photos of me from that time in my life. If they do, I hope they don't recognize me .. I think I've changed quite a bit anyway.....haha.

Since I tend to lay off the lipstick / lipgloss, the only colored balms I've kept around me are Cherry Chapstick and Smith's Rosebud Salve. Out of the two, I really like the Rosebud Salve. Whether or not I like a lip balm depends on 1) its oiliness, 2) its scent, and 3) how long it lasts. Cherry Chapstick is a little too waxy feeling. Rosebud Salve has an oilier texture, but isn't heavy. Plus, the scent is nice.

When I walked towards the CVS skincare aisle, there was a cardboard display for Vickery & Clarke products. I was fairly intrigued because the products are nearly all natural. There was a variety of face and body products to choose from...at cheap prices, too. But I didn't want to buy anything since I have a plethora of products to test and finish at home...so I just got the Intensive Moisture Lip Balm and the Intensive Lip Treatment.

Vickery & Clarke's Intensive Moisture Lip Balm has a very similar consistency to the Rosebud Salve, but comes packaged in a chapstick form. Its ingredients are:

Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Cera Alba (Beeswax), Natural Flavor, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Powder, Tocopherol (Vitamin E).

Why I love this lip balm (though I've only used it for 3 hours):

1) The minimalist packaging. Not conspicuous at all.
2) It feels like my Rosebud Salve--not too heavy, but still sufficiently moisturizing.
3) It smells like chocolate.
4) The awesome ingredients. Rarely do you have a chap stick that contains good ingredients without compromising the quality and texture.
5) It's 94% natural.

I don't have a photo for the Intensive Lip Treatment, which is 95.75% natural, but I can list the ingredients:

Water, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Glycerin, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Cetearyl Glucoside, Cetearyl Alcohol, Simmondsia Chinesis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Arnica Cordifolia (Arnica) Extract, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Retinyl Palmitate (Vitamin A), Lecithin, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Leaf Extract, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf (Aloe Vera) Extract, Mentha Piperita (Peppermint) Leaf Extract, Flavor, Dimethicone, Methyl Glucose Sesquisteareate, PEG-12 Dimethicone, Silica, Phenoxyethanol, Chlorphenesin, Disodium EDTA.

I nearly went blind from typing this up. The ingredients are printed on an extremely tiny tube!

The Intensive Lip Treatment comes in a milky liquid form. It is very watery and I would liken it to a serum. I apply it to my lips first, and then apply the lip balm on top to seal in the treatment (just as how you would apply lotion over a serum on your face). The treatment smells like mint, and the the balm smells like chocolate, so it's as if I'm indulging in mint chocolate ice cream, minus the calories!

Vickery & Clarke is exclusively sold through CVS. Eventually, when I finish all my other face products, I plan on going back for their Anti-Oxidant Face Serum and Hand Cream with Shea Butter.

I'll update on these lippies around the end of the month, when I'm not so swamped. I really need to stop procrastinating....sigh.


Oh my gosh....how hot is Britney Spears in the new Circus video? I love this song and I'm so excited for her comeback! Yay!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Victoria's Secret Fashion Show 2008

OK, I couldn't keep away from here for too long, but I just had to write this entry. While procrastinating, I was completely blown away by the makeup and fashion at this year's Victoria's Secret Fashion Show. This is definitely my favorite they've done so far.

Some highlights (click to enlarge!):

Channeling Artemis and Athena - soft, whimsical girlie pieces mixed with tough leather straps and Grecian buckles.

Selita Ebanks was on FIRE! Quite possibly the hottest Angel of the night.

Romantic black lace in a steely gray ensemble.

Adorable Miranda Kerr. If Selita was the sex kitten, Miranda was the sweetheart.

The PINK line was very cute, with a lot of sassiness.

LOVE the roses woven into the wood corset and mini hoopskirt, and the sparkly spiderweb wings! Gorgeous. The wings this year were truly works of art--another was composed of tiny fluttering butterflies! Unfortunately, I couldn't find a photo.

Haute couture ruffles mimicking peonies, continuing the flower motif.

If you missed the show, you can still watch it online here.
Definitely check it out! Not sure if you can watch it outside of the US though...

Makeup wise, this year's look was very minimalistic and angelic looking--just what I like. You could definitely wear this look to the office, to school--any daytime function--and look great. My break down is as follows:

1. Nude, shimmery eyes. Light golds, taupe, champagne, and even olives were used all over eyelids and brought dramatically into the tear ducts and under half of the lower lashline for an innocent, doe eyed look. Eyes were tightlined with dark brown liner, slightly winged out at the ends, finished by a couple coats of mascara.
2. Contoured and highlighted cheeks. If any bronzer was applied, it was definitely applied with a light hand under the cheekbones, at the temples, along the bridge of the nose, and around the chin. The emphasis was on highlighting the cheeks--again, champagne and warm frosty colors were exaggerated at the upper halves of the cheeks right up to under the temples. The cheeks were topped off with a peachy pink blush at the apples.
3. Peachy pink lips. To match the cheeks, peach and pink lipcolor was applied. To recreate the look, I'd apply lipstick or lipliner, before topping it off with gloss. You can mix and match the peach and pink however best for your skintone. A peach base with pink gloss would probably work for cool tones, and a pink base with peach gloss would probably work for warm tones.

I wish I had time to experiment with this look right now, but I have to get back to work!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Clarisonic Skin Care Brush - Week 3

Nothing has really changed from the second week. The brush is continuing to help remove all my makeup and sunblock from my face at the end of the day. My pores are much smaller, but that is largely in thanks to Estee Lauder's Idealist, which I was using before I started using the Clarisonic. One thing that is upsetting me is that I still have clogged pores and blackheads on my nose. I expected the Clarisonic to be able to purge my pores completely, but when I look in the mirror, I can still clearly see that they are not clear. So I suppose there's a limit to how much cleansing can achieve.

However, the Clarisonic did provide a good foundation for some serious pore cleansing I did the other day. After washing my face, I put on a Biore nose strip while my face was still wet to see how much gunk I could get out of my pores. Nose strips haven't always worked that well for me. The advertisements always show a ton of gunk on the strip after the model takes it off. For me, it's usually only a couple blackheads, whiteheads or sebum plugs that came out, so it's never gratifying or reassuring. But this time when I took off the strip, there was A TON of sebum stuck to it. So, what I gather from this experience is that 1) exfoliating is key to clearing out your pores, and 2) the Clarisonic isn't a "miracle worker," just a helpful assistant--if I want great skin, I still have to do all the steps I normally do.

On a side note, I want to point out you should never dry your skin after you wash and exfoliate if you're going to put on a peel off mask or pore strip. When you wash your face, the warm water loosens all the dirt and sebum, and if it hasn't come off your face completely, you're just going to pat it right back into the pores when you pat your face dry. So before you wash your face, have all your other peeling products ready, so when you're done, you can put them on while your face is still soaking wet for the best result.

Anyway, back to the Clarisonic. I'm not convinced I should keep it. Yes, my skin is looking great, but I do still have clogged pores, and I am still getting pimples (though nothing too serious). Kind of disappointing when I expected all my skin problems to magically go away after using it. I might keep the Clarisonic for a second month, actually, since I did purchase it from Sephora which has the 60 day money back guarantee. If I don't have the "flawless glowing skin" that everyone else claims to have by then, I'll be taking it back for a refund. If that happens, the good news for you guys is I'll probably come up with exfoliating reviews to see if I can maintain the Clarisonic's results. I've read on a couple blogs that some people didn't notice the difference the Clarisonic made until they stopped using it. So..we'll see. If my skin deteriorates after I return it, despite my exfoliating, I'll just have to buy it again.

I'm going to temporarily refrain from my regular reviewing so I can focus on my finals. However, I will continue to blog about the Clarisonic, since I want to keep giving weekly updates, and I'm sure I'll need a break from writing papers anyway. Some skincare things I'm planning on reviewing eventually are: Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion & Gel, Clinique Turnaround Concentrate Visible Skin Renewer, Kiehl's Abyssine Serum, and MAC Prep + Prime Face Protect SPF 50. I'm also thinking of purchasing more Japanese mascaras (the only kind which seem to work for me). I really want to try Majolica Majorca; does anyone have good recommendations?

Wish me luck for getting through the next couple of weeks! If you're taking finals also, good luck to you too!