Cleansing Done Right

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Sometimes, I hate cleansers. I try and try again but inevitably they always end up in a corner of my shower, ignored and lonely. They’re too rich, or too drying, or they smell funny. I never thought I’d find the right one.
(Feeling a bit Goldilocks with this…)
This winter though I stumbled on the best combination of products that make my skin feel glowing and hydrated. The paring up of the rich Boots Botanics Hot Cloth Cleansing Balm and the Osmia Organics Gentle Foaming Cleanser is a match made in heaven for me. Boots Cleansing Balm is chocked full of great oils including, olive, jojoba, and sweet almond. I use about a nickel size of the cleansing balm and massage it into my skin and then wipe it away with hot muslin or flannel cloth. On it’s own I like it but it can be a bit heavy on my skin. So I follow it up with a quick cleanse of the lovely OO Gentle Foaming cleanser. It’s a lovely thick gel that when massaged into damp skin creates a slight foam. I just rinse this off and then follow it with any products that I’m using. This nightly cleansing routine has kept my skin calm, hydrated and less prone to it’s normal winter freakout.

What’s your current favorite cleansing routine?

Modern Radiance Concentrate


Need a little more glow this winter? Look no further! La Bella Figura’s Modern Radiance Concentrate is the answer.
I’ve been using this high performance vitamin C in my daily skincare routine for quite a while now and I have to say I think I’m pretty hooked. It’s the natural beauty’s answer to the clinical vitamin C serums out there. Pre-greening I was a big fan of SkinMedica’s vitamin C as it was both fat soluble and water soluble. What’s I didn’t love is all of the junk that they put in it. LBF’s Modern Radiance Concentrate is even better than my old favorite. It has a healthy dose of vitamin C along with ferulic acid (not scary acid-  the collagen boosting kind) as well as a plethora of skin brightening ingredients and antioxidants. Seriously just look at this ingredient list:

Ingredients: Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Juice*, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut Fruit) Juice*, Opuntia Ficus (Barbary Fig) Seed oil*, Theobroma Grandiflorum (Cupuacu) Butter, Terminalia Ferdinandiana (Kakadu Plum) Cell Extract, Centella Asiatica (Gotu Kola) Extract*, Aronia Melanocarpa (Aronia Berry) Extract*, Hippophae Rhamnoides (Seabuckthorn Fruit) Oil CO2*, Ferulic Acid (Acid Derived From Plants), Glycrrhiza Glabra (Licorice Root) Extract*, Cucurbita Pepo (Pumpkin Seed) Extract, Oenothera Biennis (Evening Primrose Flower) Extract, Olea Europea (Olive) Leaf Extract*, Helichrysum Stoechas Extract*, Malva Sylvestris (Mallow) Extract*, Bambusa Vulgaris (Bamboo) Extract, Persea Gratissima (Avocado Fruit) Extract*, Coffea Arabica (Green Coffee) Bean Oil, Jasminum Officinale (Jasmine Flower) Oil, Leuconostoc Ferment Filtrate (Radish Root) Extract, Punica Granatum (Pomegranate) Seed Oil CO2*, Daucus Carota Sativa (Cold Pressed Virgin Carrot) Seed Oil*, Zingiber Officinale (Fresh Ginger Root) Oil, Cymbopogan Martinii Motia (Palmarosa) Oil, Salix Alba (White Willow) Bark Extract*, Xanthan Gum (Non-GMO)*, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride (Derived From Coconut), Vegetable Gylcerin (Non-GMO), Ethyl Alcohol (Derived From Non-GMO Corn)*

What I’ve noticed since adding it into my routine is that my skin is brighter and clearer. My tiny bits of pigmentation have faded nicely. And the icing on the cake is that in the past two months I’ve received more complements on my skin and I’m wearing less makeup! Even my mom asked what I did different! If it can pass the mom test it’s a total keeper in my routine.
So in a nutshell, is it expensive- yes.
Is it totally worth it for me – heck yes.
Karen & Victoria – please don’t ever stop making this. It’s a total gem!

Osmia Organics Detox Mask


Can we talk about my December skin for a moment? It decided to flip the heck out on me and not only broke out, but decided it would be great to top things of with some serious dry skin. Flaking and breaking out. Real cool skin, real cool. Thankfully I had this gem in the beauty stash. Osmia Organics Detox Exfoliating Mask* to the rescue! It’s a fantastic multi-tasker that not only helps to purify the skin, but also helps to smooth away those nasty winter flakes.
While this amazing mask already has raw manuka honey powder (seriously didn’t even know you could powder honey), my favorite way to use it is with MORE HONEY! Mix a little of the powder with a dollop of your favorite raw honey and then slather it all over your face. Now wait. Sensitive gals like myself probably only want to leave it on about 15 minutes or so. Rinse it off in soft circular movements to make use of the bamboo charcoal and olive leaf powders exfoliating action. DO NOT SCRUB! Your face isn’t in need of sanding. I promise. After rinsing, pat dry and follow up with your favorite serums.
Post mask my skin felt like it had been professionally polished by a fellow esthetician. Needless to say I’m in love and it really helped get my skin back on track.

*was generously gifted to me by the lovely people at Osmia Organics. All opinions per usual are my own!

Green Beauty Skin Care Tag

There’s a new tag in the green beauty community.  And what kind of tag would an esthetician like myself be most geeked about? A skin care tag!
As you might imagine being an esthetician skin care is my job so I love this stuff. Today I’ll share with you some of my personal favorite tips, tricks and info.

Describe your skin care routine in 5 words
You know, surprisingly damn simple.

I am not a complicated girl when it comes to skin care. I tend to streamline my products so they are the most effective at what they do. I have a handful of go-to products that I use and I don’t switch it up a ton. My skin tends to be happiest this way.


What’s your skin type?
In esthy terms I’m a Fitzpatrick 2. So I’m fair but with golden/neutral tones; prone to crisping up in the sun. I tend to be dry most of the year but have occasional bouts of “confused” skin. My major skin care concerns are fine lines, dark circles, occasional breakouts and keeping my skin nice and bright.

What’s your favorite skin care product?
I love masks. They can really make a lovely difference in your skin. Not to mention they give you a reason to take a few minutes for yourself. Two of my current favorites are the Antioxidant Mask from Kahina and Tata Harper’s Resurfacing mask. I’ve also got my eye on Osmia Organic’s Detox Mask and May Lindstrom’s Problem Solver.


Top blemish zapper? 
After trying what feels like a ton of different spot treatments & serums over the years I think I finally found “the one“. For me, it’s the Spot Treatment by Osmia Organics. Nothing has worked as well as this little powerhouse does. It’s one of those miracle products that you can put on in the evening and wake up with the breakout having vanished. I will never be without it again.

Face wipes, yay or nay?
A very firm nay! I’ve really wanted to love these. They’d be great for my kids when I do theatrical makeup. But I’ve found them to be lacking. Too much scrubbing, too much stinging and way too many breakouts. No thank you I’ll skip ’em.

Toner, yay or nay?
Major YAY!!! Hydrating mists are a total essential to me. I use them before serums. I use them in facials. I use them to set makeup. (This is starting to sound a bit like Green Eggs & Ham) But I really do use them all the time. My favorite ones are rose water based but I like them all.


High-end skin care or high-end makeup?
Skin care. I’d love to pick both but if I had to choose one over the other it’d be skin care.

What’s the most unusual skin care product you’ve tried?
Being in the skin care industry I’ve gotten the option to try a lot of different things over the years. I think one that stands out the most is one from esthetic school. It was a weird cinnamon-y gummy sticky thing that you painted all over your skin. You waited for it to turn the skin bright pink and tighten. If I remember right it was supposed to be anti-aging…

You’re in a pharmacy and can only pick up one item – what is it?
I’m going to assume that “pharmacy” means something like a CVS right? So in that case if I had to pick up one item it’d be a toss up between coconut oil and hair ties. I buy hair ties pretty much every other trip to the store since my cats steal them. If they had coconut oil though I might go for that as I can do a ton of skin care with that one jar.

Tell us your top skin care tips:

1. Do what makes you happy – I have found as an esthetician that people have the most beautiful radiance when they are genuinely happy.

2. Do some form of exercise – This ties in with the above. Cardiovascular exercise releases chemicals in the brain that make you happy and feel good. Not only that but it makes your skin glow! All that good circulation! My personal preferences are yoga, pilates and running.

3. Eat good fresh food – I try to eat plenty of fresh veggies and fruits. This gives your body the nutrition it needs to function properly. That’s not to say that I don’t indulge in the occasional cookie or piece of chocolate. Everything in moderation.

4. Sunscreen! – Everyone’s got a different opinion on this but for me sunscreen in a must. I figure if you’re going to drop some good money on skincare you mind as well protect your investment. I like looking for physical sunscreens that are non-nano like DeVita.

5. Be nice to your skin – As a fellow esthy I agree with Pam. Don’t scrub your face off. Over exfoliation just leads to problems. Exfoliate with care and treat your skin after.

Tada! That’s all there is folks. I really loved doing this tag. Thanks to my lovely esthetician friend Pam over at Pemberly Jones for tagging me.

I’m going to tag Katie ,  Cindy , Vivi and anyone else who’d like to join in on the fun!

Osmia Organics Active Gel Nutrient Serum


I can’t believe I’ve not written a proper ode  post for this lovely gem! I jumped in and bought this several months ago after a skin flare up. Not really sure if it was PD or what but I was totally fed up with it. I read the post on PD by Sarah (Osmia’s founder) and a little light went off. I knew I needed this in my life.
The Active Gel Nutrient Serum is a lovely blend of Hyaluronic Acid, Aloe and White Tea. It’s incredibly soothing! It also has Niacinamide and Rice Proteins. So in a nutshell it’s a powerhouse of ingredients that not only soothe the skin but also help to support the hydration and structure of your skin!
My skin has been so much better since being introduced to this and it’s a mainstay in my P.M. routine. After cleansing I spray my skin with rosewater (or another toner) and then massage a nice layer of this all over. Typically I leave it at that but if I feel in need of a little something extra I’ll apply my One Love Organics Morning Glory.
I’m so grateful to have come across Osmia Organics products as they’ve made a huge difference for my skin.

You can find this product and other lovely ones on Osmia Organics site.
The Active Gel Nutrient Serum runs $55 USD

*this product was purchased by me and all opinions are my own*


So I’m finally getting life back in order and finding some time to start blogging again. As to where I’ve been my work has been crazy busy and I had a terrible skin issue that I was trying to work out. Thankfully all that’s being settled and I’m back with exciting news.

I’ve been featured on No More Dirty Looks!!! I am so excited I could hardly stand it. And I was featured on my birthday! How cool is that?!
Here is the link to the post : Alexis’s Morning Hair and Skincare Routine…Exposed!

I’ll post a review on my new Tata Harper Trio as well as the Kahina Giving Beauty Mask.

Also would you be interested in a video of me doing my normal morning makeup routine? Or video reviews of product? I’m getting a new computer that will have fancy new software for me to play around with so let me know.

Thanks for your patience while I get back up and running!