20 January 2012

Skin(ny) Dipping

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I partly chalk this up to watching too many episodes of the Real Housewives - and I know the ridiculousness in wanting to compare even a bit of my life with those well-to-do well-kept women who seem to pretty much spend their days lunching but not eating, tossing back the pinot and going to their plastic surgeon's office to get "touch ups" (between bouts of wig-pulling and snarking, of course). But let's face it, I'm not getting any younger here and it about time that I start taking care of myself and my skin - and I mean really start taking care of it, and more than just in the wash and moisturize daily way.

Problem is, I've always been a bit of a DIY-er when it comes to skincare. I have the requisite bottles of ointments and serums to keep my face all soft and shiny, I Biore strip, I use a home microderm kit. I've only actually been to the spa twice in my life and have had a whopping one whole facial (you can thank my old tomboy ways and my not-a-stitch-of-makeup wearing mom for thinking things like that were "frivolous.")

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But I am realizing that as I get older, regardless of how cool my heels are or what a nice skirt I have, it won't mean a thing if I have a face full of sallow wrinkly dark spots. I already have a love/hate relationship with my freckles. I still occassionally get acne. I dark circles under my eyes and am starting to see wrinkles. My pores are not invisible nor immaculately clean. And honestly I am kind of scared to death of getting (OK, looking) old. So I think I need to do something - but I don't know what!

I am a professional skincare newbie and know next to nothing about the various peels, lasers, facials out there. I don't even know how or where to start (should I be going to a spa, med spa or plain ole dermatologist?)

So I need your help, ladies, and some advice. What would you recommend for a gal who wants to start really taking care of her skin (and vainly looking youthful) but doesn't know how? What are some of my options that don't break the bank or aren't too evasive?

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Sweater: Lands' End performance (worn here - sim here)
Shirts: Lands' End Canvas floral poplin (worn here - sim here) / J.Crew neon gingham (worn here - sim here, here)
Jeans: J.Crew destroyed matchstick (sim here)
Belt: J.Crew embossed (sim here)
Necklace: Old Navy ethnic statement (worn here - sim here, blue here)
Shoes: Sam Edelman kody (worn here - sim here, wedge here, peep-toe here)

As a "bonus" for your Friday,  doggie attack:

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39 comments:

  1. Do you have a Clarisonic yet? I have used my Clarisonic Mia since October and I have never had such great skin! I don't know if it prevents wrinkles per say but my pores are definitely smaller and my skin looks fresher and generally healthier. I'm 28 and the thing I hate most about my skin are the starting of forehead lines and my freckles and it has lessened those on me. I would wait to get one when Sephora or Ulta does a sale and even then it's around $80 but it was worth every penny for me!

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    1. I totally didn't think about the Clarisonic! I've heard such good things about that product - must check it out, thanks!

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    2. check out the purseforum deals and steals, they're always pretty up to date!

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  2. I'm pretty a DIY in taking care of skin department. I only do a few facial scrubs(to exfoliate) a week and put on those paper masks(to keep skin hydrated). Like your pics with your doggie. My dog does the same thing sometimes. He is probably wondering " what the heck r u doing in front of nobody? Don't just stand there and pose, I'm coming to play now" haha

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    1. I know, I think pup not-so-secretly hates the laptop, and yes, she photo bombs me all the time!

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  3. I second Megan. Get a Clarisonic! It helps! I have had one (the regular, not mia) for two and a half years... still works like a charm... so, totally worth the price in the long run.

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  4. Honestly, compared to me, you're an angel. i've never had a facial. I wash my face with water and that's it. I don't moisturize or do anything for my skin. I've been lucky in always having fairly good skin, but I know that at 26 I really should start thinking about when times won't be so good....ugh...good luck!
    www.saysskippy.blogspot.com

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    1. I've got oily skin so I couldn't ever get away with just washing with water - but then I've got dry spots on my skin so I can't get away with no moisturizing either - you've been lucky!

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  5. Yes love the Clarisonic! I would start simple, find a great moisturizer you love, SPF and a cleanser that doesn't dry out your skin. If you're looking for "natural" products I love the Pure and Simple line. It's available online but it's a Canadian based line. Their products are just that, pure and simple and quite inexpensive.

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  6. Actually Clarisonic is not the best for someone who has freckles. It will darken the color of freckels. Also it is too harsh on your skin where the skin is being thin. My relatives work in the lab for a Big-Cosmetic brands that has been popular worldwide (its headquarter in Asia, I think you can tell which one I am talking about...), and they told me about this. If you want a healthier skin, you need to massage your head. It will stimulate blood flow in your face as well and will prevent from having dull and saggy skin. As for pores, you need to put hot towel on your face before you wash your face. Steam from the towel will open your pores, so you can clean better afterwards. Then apply moistureizers, and DON'T FORGET using cold towel to close your pores after that.

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    1. I hope you're talking about the big asian cosmetic company starting with a S, because I love their products! I definitely need to start doing the hot towel/cold towel thing - that is so smart!

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    2. Yes You got it right! They are both PhD holders and working as researchers there, so I think what they told me is highly trustable. I also have freckles, and know that rubbing the area can make them darker. If you try brush, maybe you could use it avoiding the area. (on nose area etc) Oh and I wanted to note that peeling and photofacial are not for Asians because of thinness of the skin.

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  7. Lisa...first, LOVE the outfit!
    Second, check out Renee Rouleau's website. She is an esthetician and actually has a blog with all sorts of answers to "skin" questions. I will be (uh-umm) fourty-five this year and just started treating myself to regular facials. I think the big thing is daily sunscreen use (which I started about two years ago)I use Renee Rouleau Daily Protection#30)and regular exfoliation. Anyway, check it out!
    BTW...I think your freckles are GREAT! :o)

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    1. Thanks much, I will definitely look at Renee's site!

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  8. i just got a clarisonic mia and i LOVE it. i think i need a better daily moisturizer though, the one i recently bought is leaving my face a little greasy.

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  9. Like the other ladies have mentioned, definitely try out the Clarisonic (I have mentioned it several times on my blog, see post here for example). I am also Chinese, and have problematic skin (very reactive, tends to produce oil if stressed or irritated, scars and freckles easily). If you are worried about the harshness of the brush, you can buy sensitive and delicate skin brush heads. I have to say though, I personally think facials at most spas are a waste of money and probably do more harm than good!

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  10. Lisa, I am in kind of the same boat. I've been looking for products that don't break the bank but that will get me on my way to better skin in the long run. I read some ladies pointed out the clarisonic but cheapo that I am I found an option from Olay, called Pro-X That has good reviews and its about 80 bucks cheaper. I plan on starting there just because I am not ready to fork over $100+ yet. If you're ready for the investment, I'm sure its a good one but I thought it'd be nice to give you options :)

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  11. On a dermatologist's recommendation, I started using SkinCeutical's CE ferulic serum several years ago. When I used it regularly, people would notice that my skin looked better. (I now use the much cheaper Cosmetic Skin Solutions' version because SkinCeuticals is on the pricey side). You might try that and see if it helps.
    Also, if you are not wearing sunscreen everyday, now would be a good time to start. Some people think sunscreen is only for days when they are outside for extended periods of time. But if you think about how much incidental exposure you get during a regular day (driving, running out to get coffee, etc) it adds up.
    Lastly, for Christmas I got a bottle of Philosophy Microdelivery Exfoliating Wash. I use it once a day and really like it - I think it makes my skin softer.
    Hope you do a follow-up post on what you try out and how you like it!

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  12. Ok, so I know I've got some years on you, but here are my recs---I use the Olay Facial cleansing brush. Similar to Clairisonic but won't break the bank. My aesthetician noticed a huge difference after I started using it. I also use Replenix Smoothing Serum 10x (sparingly) and Replenix Eye Repair Cream. Both can be ordered from Apothica/Skin Care RX. For cleanser I love Bliss Fabulous Foaming Face Wash. So affordable and is a great easy exfoliant, too. I have issues with acne and I've seen HUGE improvements in using these products. Smooth skin and less breakouts!

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    1. Ooh, another vote for the Olay brush - love cheaper alternatives! And thanks for the product recs!

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  13. Check out Paula's Choice items (www.paulascoice.com). You need a good exfoliant (I use the weekly resurfacing treatment and a daily BHA gel). You also need antioxidants (I use her super antioxidant concentrate serum). Her products have made my skin almost flawless (minus acne scars- grr)!

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  14. I don't really have a specific regimen for my skin either. I just make sure I wash off all the make up I had on my face and always use sunscreen even on a cloudy day! I think you have beautiful skin!! Keep up what ever your doing :) Your outfit today is awesome. I love the yellow shirt!!

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  15. I have pretty sensitive skin...as in will inflame easily and has had every kind of acne known to man. The harshest things I use on my skin have 2% salicylic acid, with the exception of a biore mask that makes my face tight tight tight. I recently bought the olay spin brush (clairisonic knock off) and while I really like it...it did make my red spots even more irritated. My solution is to use it on a Saturday night so my skin calms down by Monday morning, and gently work up from there.

    As far as eyes go, I've started using Lancome genefique eye youth activating eye concentrate (black tub) because I got it in a sample. Mainly for preventative care, and to get rid of dark circles, which I think it does. It's expensive but the sample size has lasted me since October, so that says something. Not to plug my blog, but I talked about it here in a product review video: http://sapphiresunrise.blogspot.com/2012/01/best-in-beauty-picks-for-2011.html

    - Lauren
    PS: Love the doggie attack : )

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    1. Thanks, I will definitely look at the Ola brush alternative and the Lancome - anything to potentially get rid of my dark circles!

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  16. I was just pondering these same skin care questions the other day. I'm rather low maintenance when it comes to my facial routine, but I've starting noticing a couple wrinkles that weren't there a year ago...yikes!!! I'm definitely taking notes on all the great suggestions above!

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    1. Yeah, I'm noticing lines starting now and I am slowly freaking out. I don't know what I'm going to do when I start getting grey hairs, eeps!

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  17. Hey Lisa! Beautiful outfit girl and I love your necklace. My dermatologist recommended Cetaphil (which comes from any drugstore $10.99). I never had any problems since. I bought a Clarisonic Mia and use it in conjunction with my Cetaphil cleanser. I don't like the moisturizer or other products from Cetaphil, so I can only recommend the cleanser. I thought I would dabble this year to see if there are any other skin care programs and right now I'm trying Clarins. But I've only been on it for 2 weeks. It's really good, but so is Cetaphil. I'll be doing a review about it soon. One of my bloggie friends made a recommendation but I forgot the name of it. I'll have to go to her blog. I plan on buying the starter kit to try it. So I'll keep you posted :) Wishing you a wonderful weekend!

    http://averysweetblog.com/

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  18. Love the outfit! I wish i could be more helpful in the skincare department. I find that my skin doesn't breakout as much when I don't wash my face. I know that's terrible thing, but water dries out my face too much. I sometimes use the Olay facial wipes, but not always.

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    1. You lucky naturally good skinned gal, you! ;o)

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  19. Thank you ladies for so many good recs, especially about the Clarisonic - I will definitely look into this! Is there any major difference between the regular $200 Clarisonic and the smaller Mia? Seems like one is just rechargable and the other is plug-in only, which I would not mind.

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  20. I'm definitely going to check out this Olay brush alternative too!

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  21. I use the much cheaper version brush by Olay Pro-X. It works great.

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  22. oh and for skincare, i def. recommend the CURE japanese peeling gel.. u will literally see ur dead skins cells fall off! it's japans number 1 items. also, i would invest in serums rather than moisturizers.. i think serums are magic! it changed my skin & my life!

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    1. Thanks for the serum info! I did purchas my first one, a Replenix brand retinol one.

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  23. I had a Clarisonic and it died on me. It just doesn't want to work and I don't know why. I got a good number of months use out of it, but I'm not sure I got a full year. I've heard good things about the Olay and would try that, personally, before buying another Clarisonic. I also second the SkinCeuticals skincare line. There are different serums that will protect and regenerate whatever you desire. The before & after pics they have are amazing.

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    1. I got the Olay brush - figure if I do really like it, maybe I can upgrade. But bummer about your Clarisonic!

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  24. I love your sunny yellow and great layering.
    My skin is a mess, especially at the moment, becuase I still get acne and the past few weeks it's been really awful. (thank goodness for photoshop, haha)

    Chic on the Cheap

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  25. Love your layering! And the pup is so cute - photobomb doggie!!

    xo, sam

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