Hello Stranger! I hope you’ve been doing well, it feels like I haven’t checked in here in ages (6 days. That’s it. My sense of time passage is seriously warped).
Today I wanted to delve in to the first in this year’s series of favorites posts. I’m excited! I love favorites posts! So let’s kick this thing off and talk about a few hair care and skin care products.
Since we’ll be talking about skin care here, I have relatively dry, sensitive skin. In the warmer months I’ll become more of a normal/dry combo skin type.
Favorite Hair Treatment – Coconut Oil
This is a two time winner in this category! As you might have noticed, my hair is of a rather unnatural hue. While I find that to be delightful, color treating takes a toll and when combined with heat styling, things can get really hairy (I’ll be here all week folks! Try the veal! Actually don’t try the veal. Veal is disgusting and horrible.). Luckily coconut oil does actually help keep my hair healthier and I can definitely tell a difference when I skip it for a few weeks.
I purchase my coconut oil from the local organic food store but I noticed recently that even Walmart carries coconut oil so you can find it anywhere!
Favorite Body Oil – Monoi Vanille Oil
Another two time winner!
I like to use this oil two different ways: 1) This is my favorite method particularly in the winter and I use it as a moisturizer right after showering. It doesn’t sink in but it really soothes dry skin and smells amazing. 2) It’s also great IN the shower before you dry off and because you have to emulsify it with the water on your skin, it doesn’t create such a heavy layer of oil and I then just blot my skin dry (this is a great option if you shower in the morning and don’t want to leave trails of oil on everything you touch. Unless of course that’s your thing. In which case, go on with your bad self!)
Favorite Body Lotion – Fortune Cookie Soaps Whipped Cream
2015 was undoubtedly the year of exploring the indie beauty world and the very first indie purchase that I made was the Fortune Cookie Soaps Whipped Cream in the Butter Beer scent from The Wizard Collection (Also, holy run on sentences Batman!). This formula was absolutely delightful. It was incredibly moisturizing, left a protective barrier but never felt greasy and it also smelled amazing. I do feel the need to state that I’ve only tried this single scent so far and it was HEAVILY scented. Like make your whole house smell kind of scented. So you’ve been warned.
2014 Favorite Lotion – gud Body Butter
Favorite Eye Makeup Remover – Clinique Take Off The Day Cleansing Balm
Another first time winner! Clinique cleansing balm is a game changer for me. It removes ALL of my eye makeup with no tugging or pulling or rubbing, I don’t have to use a cotton pad, I don’t lose eyelashes, it doesn’t break me out, it completely removes sunscreen, a little bit goes a long way, and it doesn’t leave a film on my face after rinsing OR dry my skin out. It hits every single one of points I look for in a makeup remover. Basically my only complaint about this product is that it costs $30.00 which is pricey for a cleanser. Honestly though it’s completely worth it.
2014 Favorite Eye Makeup Remover – Sweet Almond Oil
Favorite Sunscreen – Banana Boat Baby Sunscreen
Second time winner!
I have to make a quick confession here. This last year I was horrible about sunscreen application on a daily basis. I just couldn’t handle the itchy skin and kind of stopped wearing it unless I know I’m going to be outside for a portion of the day. I just can’t with the skin irritation and the white cast and the greasiness. It’s too much I tell you!
That being said, when I do wear sunscreen I still faithfully reach for the Banana Boat Baby sunscreen in SPF 50. It’s a purely physical sunscreen (Chemical sunscreen is a major skin irritant for me so I try to avoid using it unless absolutely necessary) and out of all of the multitudes of sunscreens that I’ve tried, this is the least irritating to my skin. It does leave a bit of a white cast (I think any physical sunscreen will do this) and it does require a setting powder if you’re not into the sweaty look. So not a full fledged win but better than a lot of the alternatives. Man, that’s like the worst “favorites” write up ever!
Favorite Face Mask – NOW Moroccan Red Clay Mask
Another second time winner!
I buy this red clay powder from the local natural food store but I believe it’s also available at The Vitamin Shop.
I use this clay mask every few weeks or just when my skin is starting to break out. It keeps my skin clear and is less drying than Queen Helene Mint Julep mask (which is what I use if I’m pressed for time since it doesn’t require mixing). I swear by this stuff and would be interested to know if folks with combo or oily skin also have good luck with this mask. Let me know if you’ve tried it!
There are two categories that I had favorites in last year that are blank this year:
Favorite Facial Oil – 2014 was Argan Oil which is still a nice oil but I stopped using it at the beginning of the year out of sheer laziness and found that I didn’t particularly miss it. I’ll still use it occasionally if I am having a very dry skin day but I definitely didn’t use it often enough to put it into my favorites.
Miscellaneous Skin Care Category – 2014 was Raw Honey which I had previously used when I was recovering from over use of a retinol cream. It did help sooth my skin and I’ll use this if my skin is reacting to something but as with the argan oil, I didn’t use this often enough for it to make it into my favorites.
You can find the 2014 Skin and Hair Favorites here if you’re interested in a flash back.
I did try a few new skin care items this last year but I’ve really been trying to pin down a streamlined skin care routine that doesn’t change too much so I’ve been searching for items that I can purchase and just know that they’ll work for me. This favorites post is full of such items! Maybe next year I will have found actual moisturizers and serums and such that are “favorites” worthy but in the meantime, the hunt for the perfect routine continues.
What were some of your favorite skin care or hair care products this last year? Did you discover anything new that blew you away? Do you tend to stick with something if it REALLY works well for you or are you tempted by the allure of exciting new products?
I’ll add links to the rest of this years favorites posts as I write them.