Monday, December 28, 2009

2009's Best Face Forward

As you all know I believe that beauty starts with clear skin (hence my blog's name, Clearly Beautiful. Get it get it? ok moving on...). Ever since my first pimple at the age of 13, I've been devoted to trying out everything the skincare industry can throw at me with the promise of acne-free skin. Now that I'm in my mid-20s, I'm not only concerned with combating adult acne, but also preventing visible signs of aging. So for 2009, these were the products that delivered on their promises. Although I still suffer from breakouts, several problem zones of my face have been completely acne-free for a while (like my forehead and temples). So although the battle is only half-won, here are the VIPs of the year:
Biore Blemish Fighting Ice Cleanser: the active ingredient here is salicylic acid. This face wash is to be used after you've removed your makeup. I love how it has a non-foamy consistency, a refreshing cucumber smell, and a cool tingling sensation as you massage it in.

Olay Regenerist daily thermal mini-peel: the powerful combination of glycolic acid, thermal action, and microscrubbers combats both acne and dull skin (which contributes to an aged appearance). I adore anything containing glycolic acid, because I really see results overnight. Love this peel.

Lush Dark Angels: Honestly, please go buy this. Yes, charcoal-based products are a pain in the a** because they make a huge mess in your sink, but your skin will thank you for the effort. I love using this on particularly oily, icky skin days. The charcoal, rhassoul mud and black sugar make for a super duper exfoliator. I feel like I've had a microderm abrasion Lush-style.

Lush Grease Lightning: I gave my benzoyl peroxide the pink slip once I started using this serum every night. It prevents new break outs and quickly dries out blemishes. Best of all, it does not dry out my face like benzoyl peroxide did. And the tea tree scent is wonderful.

Aspirin: If you have nothing else in your arsenal for acne, keep a bottle of uncoated aspirin tablets around. Whenever I get a breakout, I mix 2 dissolved aspirin tablets with a cream cleanser and spread it on my face. After 30 min, I wash off, and presto, my blemish is zapped in no time. I call this my bazooka because it definitely works, but dries me out.

Mario Badescu Strawberry Face Scrub: Ok ok, I know I have used only a sample of this stuff, and only for 1 month. But I'm so impressed with it that it's made it on this list. This scrub not only exfoliates away dead skin cells, but brightens my complexion so I look a couple shades lighter. I absolutely love the texture and luxurious experience it delivers.

So there you have it, my favorite skincare goodies for 2009. These items will definitely be permanent pieces in my vanity. However, you may notice that I haven't raved about any moisturizers or makeup removers here, because nothing I've tried has blown me away enough to give it this recognition. Hopefully I will soon hit upon some gems.

If you have any suggestions for great moisturizers and makeup removers, please let me know!


Dreams That Glitter xoxo said...

I love Lush Dark Angels. Such a magical product :).

Cheryl♥ said...

What is the shelf life on Lush Dark Angels? I want to purchase it, but I don't want to waste it either (cuz I wouldn't be using it everyday)

Beautygirl24 said...

hey girl, I totally want to try lush! I wish there was a store closer to my home. I also wanted to let you know that I loooove the Costco Kirkland brushes. They are so incrediby soft! I think they are great quality and highly recommend them!

-elle♡ said...

omg i keep hearing about great reviews about lush but i just cant find a store here :'( and unwilling to go so far for it ahhh =(

.blushfully. said...

I have Lush Dark Angels and love it too! =D
And I also have the uncoated Aspirin, dissolve it and mix with honey and apply.. lol

And Cheryl, Lush Dark Angels can last you for months! From the time it's made to its expiry date is around 3 months mark, if I remember correctly.

Happy Holidays!! Happy New Year!!!
*dana (

Content Director - Strong Female Leaders said...

OOOH, the Lush Dark Angels looks interesting...

Unknown said...

I definately need to take a trip to Lush and get a few of their products

Ashwini said...

Thanks for the comments everyone! Looks like Dark Angels is getting the praise it deserves! Cheryl, the shelf life is indeed 3 months as Dana says. It's hard to use it up in 3 months if you use only 2-3 times a week, so I make it more like 4 times. You can also use it anywhere you want to exfoliate, like upper back or chest, where I tend to get oily skin. Hope that helps!

Ashwini said...

@Beautygirl24: I'll probably get a friend who has a Costco membership to let me in there and buy the Kirkland brushes. Thanks for the tip!

Ashwini said...

For those of you who don't have a store nearby (like me), maybe you should start by ordering products that are universally liked (like Rockstar Soap, Dark Angels, Honey I washed the kids, or Big Shampoo). I've only tried a couple of these things, but I think that's a safe bet. The blogging community's reviews should help you order stuff online with more confidence.

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