You Glow, Girl!
All queens need a great skin routine. I don't want to be one of those women who can't even go to the grocery store without a face full of makeup. I'll be the first to tell you that I have TERRIBLE skin. It's oily, acne prone, and scars show up easily because of my complexion. It has been that way since I was a teenager, and I have been irritating my skin for years trying to make it "better."
I used to think that I had to treat my acne with harsh chemicals and scrubs. I have tried countless products that were labeled for acne prone skin. These products usually contain salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide, which are extremely strong chemicals and irritants. Of course they only made my skin worse. It wasn't until recently that I did some research and realized that I was abusing my skin (and my bank account). I started using fewer chemicals and my skin did a complete 180! Here are some of the products that I have been using recently, as well as my updated skincare routine.
1. Cleanse twice a day.
I wash my face twice a day--once in the morning and once in the evening. I use Cerave Foaming Facial Cleanser for Normal to Oily skin. I love this face wash because it's gentle and hydrating. It contains niacinamide, which has anti-aging benefits, and hyaluronic acid for added moisture. In the evening, I use a spin brush with my cleanser to exfoliate and thoroughly wash off dirt and makeup.
I use the Clinique Acne Solutions toner sparingly. I only use it when I'm on my cycle because that is when I tend to have breakouts. It gets rid of any extra dirt and oil on the skin and contains medicine that prevents acne.
Always, always, always moisturize your face after cleansing. Until recently, I skipped this step because my face was so oily, but all skin types need a good moisturizer. I use Clinique's Moisture Surge and it is amazing! It is an oil-free gel that penetrates the skin, plus it contains hyaluronic acid which draws moisture to the face. Even though I have oily skin, it doesn't make my face greasy or shiny. As with all Clinique products, it's a bit expensive but lasts for months.
This is the most important component of any skincare ritual! I try to drink about half a gallon (64 ounces) of water each day, which is easy since I don't drink a lot of sodas or sugary juices. I honestly think that water is the #1 secret to dewy, glowing skin.
Feel free to share some of your skincare secrets! I would love to hear from you :-)
DIY Hair Mask Experiment
So I was getting ready for another typical wash day when I realized that I was almost out of deep conditioner! I have a slightly larger than normal head so the little bit of conditioner I had wouldn't work for me. I was thinking of ways to stretch this product out, when I thought why not make a hair mask?
The first ingredient I thought of was Bentonite Clay. I have a whole jar of it just waiting to be used, and people have been raving about it for years. It helps the hair retain moisture, which leads to more defined curls. I chose apple cider vinegar because it pairs well with clay and has cleansing properties. And finally, I picked honey. I always add it to my deep conditioners and it draws moisture to the hair.
Deep Conditioner of your choice (I used Cantu Deep Treatment Mask)
Apple Cider Vinegar
1. Mix equal parts clay and deep conditioner of your choice. Add 1 tsp of honey* and apple cider vinegar until you have a desired consistency.
2. Apply the mask to clean, damp hair. Leave it in for 20-30 minutes under a plastic cap.
3. Rinse the mask out completely in cool or lukewarm water.
*It's best to heat the honey before adding it to the mixture.
I'm happy with the results from my experiment, which stemmed from my unwillingness to buy more conditioner lol. As the saying goes, "limitation breeds creativity." What are some DIY hair products that you created on the fly?
F@#k It Styles
Don't you love those nights when you're scrolling through Youtube or Pinterest and come across a cute hairstyle that you want to wear the next day? You follow the steps thoroughly, use all the right products, and do exactly what the tutorial says without skipping a step. You go to bed excited because you just know you're gonna be cute the next day and get all kinds of compliments.
The next morning, you undo your hair, and you come out looking like
Yikes! What went wrong? You did exactly what the cute girl on Youtube did, used the exact same products and everything! If this has happened to you before, you are not alone especially if you're natural. This has happened more times than I can count. Then you end up panicking because you have no time to do a wash and go or start a new hairstyle from scratch.
In my two and a half years of being natural, I've learned that I need a f@#k it hairstyle. A f@#k it style is a hairstyle (or several) that is easy, cute, and can be done in a time crunch (5 minutes or less). Here are some of my life saving hairstyles for those days when my hair has a mind of its own.
What are some of your f@#k it styles? Feel free to share because I need new ideas!
Whitney loves to experiment with natural hairstyles and makeup.