Turmeric & Banana Mask 🍌

I purchased the Turmeric and Banana tightening mask from the Art of Skin Care, it is a small business run by women just like Nandi Skincare (see my previous blog post, I can’t wait to get more rose water from them!).

I’m happy to have discovered the Art of Skin Care business because they sell Le Mieux face wash (which I also blogged about too, check out my skincare tag).

The key ingredients listed on site are banana pulp and peel added for their antioxidants, turmerones from turmeric oil to brighten the complexion, echinacea purpurea, which is a flowering plant, to prevent sagging skin, and bentonite and illite clays to clarify the skin.

Detailed Ingredients List: “Water/Eau, Pumice, Glycerin, Kaolin, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Musa Pardisiaca (Banana) Fruit Powder, Echinacea Purpurea Extract, Parfum*, Corn Starch, Musa Sapientum (Banana) Fruit Flakes, Curcuma Longa (Turmeric) Root Extract, Illite, Decyl Glucoside, Xantham Gum, Phenoxyethanol, Benzyl Alcohol, Benzoic Acid, Sorbic Acid, Citric Acid. *Natural fragrance derived from 100% natural sources”

This Turmeric and Banana tightening mask is so awesome to use before dermaplaning. I love to use an ice cube from my freezer on my face to de-puff and then dry my skin and layer this active mask on. My routine is I wait for the mask to dry and then wash it off as a tightening pre-treatment before dermaplaning. The results are stunning, my face is super tight, clear, and bright afterward!

This mask is active so it does cause a little bit of a burning sensation and it leaves my nose slightly red afterward. However, the burning feeling is tolerable and it decreases as it dries. This is the reason why I always use it before dermaplaning because I imagine it would burn too much after exfoliation.

I recommend giving this mask a go if you’re in the market for an affordable skin tightening treatment, the sticker tag is $30.00. ❤

Chicken Sandwich Recipe

Hey all & happy Friday! I thought I’d share my chicken sandwich recipe I made for my mother this past mother’s day. *MUST* added to ingredients I think are the cornerstone of flavor for this sandwich and not replaceable. I eyeball ingredients, so feel free to add as much or as little of anything except for the salt.

Ingredients:

  • Chicken Breasts
  • Olive Oil
  • Fresh Basil (just a little)*MUST*
  • 1 Tomato *MUST*
  • 1 Bell Pepper *MUST*
  • Mayo (a sweet tasting one, I used Kraft ‘real mayo’ – 2-3 teaspoons) *MUST*
  • Pickles (I used Bread and Butterchips style sandwich pickles)
  • Provolone cheese
  • Irish Butter *MUST*
  • Radishoots
  • Another bitter green of your choice (because I do not remember which one I used lol, anything works so long as it is leafy)
  • 1 ginger root *MUST*
  • Ciabatta Bread *MUST*
  • Honey Mustard
  • Minced Garlic – two teaspoons
  • Salt (just a dash)
  • Paprika
  • Hak’s BBQ Sauce – Smoked Maple Mustard *MUST*
  • (optional – Any kind of simple salt-free assorted chicken seasoning of your choice)

I cleaned my chicken breasts with lemon and rinsed it well and then boiled the chicken, cut into pieces, with ginger root pieces until it was cooked but not overdone. I added the chicken alone into a lightly oiled baking pan and seasoned it with garlic, paprika, salt, and Hak’s BBQ Sauce, Smoked Maple Mustard. I added the chicken into the oven on broil to let it gain color (500 temp.).

I made a salad of chopped fresh basil, tomato, and a yellow bell pepper, and mixed it together with mayo.

I washed the radishoots and the other leafy greens that will top off the sandwich and placed it to the side. These greens will act as the bitter greens necessary to balance out the sweetness of the sandwich.

I set up the ciabatta bread by adding a little Irish butter and honey mustard to each slice of the bread. I then added a slice of provolone cheese to each slice of the bread and I put the bread into the oven on broil (500 temp.) to warm and brown.

Next, I took out the chicken and bread from the oven. I added chicken breasts to one side of the sandwich and pickles to the other side. I then added the tomato, basil, bell pepper salad to the chicken and topped it off with the bitter greens. That’s all, done! ❤

Hair Treatments (softness and growth) & Loved Products

MSM update – I finished the bag of MSM I had many moons ago. I mainly drank it because using it topically was slightly labor-intensive ~ melting it and waiting for it to cool. I did not notice any major growth difference and I got sick of the headaches. I also think it broke me out a little.

What I’m Currently Doing:

1.) Hair Steam

2.) Deep Treatments

3. Collagen Gummies (for hair and skin health)

I figured out what my hair was missing; that is the consistent use of hair steam. I’m doing deep treatments each week and I routinely massage my scalp with diluted peppermint oil.

Hair steamer I use – Here is my affiliate link

I recommend hair steaming because steam is necessary for moisture and growth as it can open the hair shaft. If you don’t steam, products may just sit on top of your hair.

I also am using castor oil and aloe vera juice as a leave-in. Aloe vera juice works wonders for my hair, it makes it incredibly soft. However, it does not work for every hair type.

I have low porosity transitioning hair and I plan to either continue to stretch out my relaxer during my hair growth challenge and get another relaxer or become a heat trained natural and regularly do silk presses. Aloe vera juice makes my roots soft, hydrated, and ready for detangling. I highly recommend trying it out if you have dry roots that expel water like mine.

Deep Treatments:

Egg, Coconut Oil, and Mayo

Aunt Jackie’s Flaxseed Recipes Fix My Hair, Intensive Repair Conditioning Masque

Deva Curl Seaweed Repair Mask

I’ve also used Rosemary Mint Cleansing Shampoo and the Coconut leave-in from the Renpure line. I like both products because the cleansing shampoo helps maintain moisture as does the leave-in. However, I think aloe vera juice makes the biggest difference when compared to the Renpure line in terms of maintined hydration.

Recently, I picked up a mint conditioner and Honey leave-in from Camille Rose from Whole Foods. The mint conditioner is just okay at moisturizing my hair but the leave-in is fantastic, but it smells like cupcakes rather than honey. ❤

The Journey Continues…

Smile Direct Finished!

My Experience: I found that changing aligners only hurt slightly on the first day for an hour or two. Additionally, my teeth were sensitive to hard foods on the first day I switched to a new set of aligners but besides that, I never experienced that much pain. Overall, it was a very easy and smooth process. I changed my aligners as advised every week to two weeks as scheduled for my plan. Smile Direct emailed me to remind me when I had to change aligners and online I could track my progress and see how many aligners were left to use.

Now that the process is over, I’m glad I went with Smile Direct because the remote nature of the treatment plan worked out well given the current lockdown. Also, the five-month process was extremely fast. ❤

Before:

After:

NuFace Trinity Review

Have you ever considered microcurrent face treatments at home? NuFace Trinity includes 3 attachments: (1) a larger microcurrent attachment that contours the face and helps “face-lift” larger sections of your face and the sides of your neck (pictured at the top).

(2) an LED attachment that works as a wrinkle reducer for the face and entire neck

Picture from NuFace Site

(3) one small lip and eye microcurrent attachment for a more targeted treatment. This attachment is used in the same areas as the larger microcurrent attachment. Both micro-current attachments are not recommended for use in the middle of the neck. The set additionally includes a small primer gel.

Picture from NuFace Site

NuFace requires regular use. Though there is an immediate difference the effect is only temporary. Regular use works best because this device is essentially facial massage or light therapy and no one would expect one facial massage to permanently lift his or her face forever.

I like to use this device to relax and as a preventive measure against premature wrinkles with the red light attachment. While my mother likes to use the micro-current attachments and she notices a drastic “face-lift” difference wherein one side of her face is noticeably higher and tighter than the untreated side.

The NuFace Trinity set is pricey at $499 however there are payment plans available as well. The gel primer is necessary to use for the micro-current attachments. I recommend only applying gel to the section you are currently working on because if you apply it to your whole face it will dry and waste but if you work on one section at a time (forehead, then cheekbones etc) the gel will give you more bang for your buck.

The only place I noticed I could purchase a large sized bottle of NuFace gel is on Amazon. For some reason the NuFace site does not currently have large bottles of the primer gel for sale.

I recommend this product because it is easy to use and charge. Cleaning is also easy, I use paper towel with rubbing alcohol to clean after any attachment use. Importantly, the difference is immediate so it is excellent to use before a special occasion as well.<3

Spring Clothing ~ Reformation, Realisation Par, Express, (Nordstrom Tops $10-$13)

Spring Outfit Ideas:

The yellow bucket hat is from Pacsun and I got it on sale for $13.96. I looked it up on the site and it is now full price again but they do have a 15% off email sign up discount. The black top is from Express, as are the earrings, and the pants are from H&M. I bought these items in-store before lockdown and I cannot find it online (except for the linked earrings) but there are many versions of these pieces sold everywhere.

Similar looking pants sold on H&M:

Ankle-length Cotton Pants

Pima Cotton Chinos

Slacks

I think a baggier style pant and off the shoulder top make a nice combination because it strikes a balance between masculinity and femininity.

Pictured above my necklace is from Venessa Mooney. I think that store makes excellent fashion jewelry. I cannot find my necklace online but I think this one looks similar. My jeans are Jordache, I got them for around $73 and the original price is $245, so an excellent sale! I think jeans and bags for work or school are great pieces to purchase on sale during this time. My top is from Reformation in the color Peony. 

Long-sleeved wrap tops like the one pictured from Reformation are great for spring and summer nights because they offer some warmth when it gets breezy.

My white top is from Revolve and my jeans are from Reformation. I like the combination of a white top and light blue denim. 

Pictured here are honorable mention items: I love the Realisation Par Elton John collection. I paired the Baby Hercules t-shirt with Yesstyle earrings. 

The green top is from Reformation and I paired with a Venessa Mooney necklace and old white Kate Spade flower studs. The floral top is from the Leith brand sold at Nordstrom. I like this brand because it has many spring and summer pieces, especially tops for only 11-13 dollars. I’d recommend hand washing or dry cleaning any tops from this brand. Leith is a great brand to check out on a budget and I think many of their items look similar to Reformation’s style or Rebecca Minkoff. 

Lastly, pictured is a Reformation cropped knitted white top and statement earrings from Macy’s. I purchased a top similar to this from Forever 21 back in the fall and it completely shrank due to poor quality after getting washed. But in owning that top I realized how practical a basic long-sleeved knitted white crop top is. I expect that this top has better quality and will last a lot longer to work as a staple for the spring, summer, and later fall. 

Next blog posts:

NuFace Review

Hair Products for softness and growth & Hair Update ❤

Lavender Sleeping Mask 🌙 & Cucumber Face Wash

Herbivore Botanicals MOON FRUIT Superfruit Night Treatment not only smells like perfect lavender it also has fruit enzymes and vegan Hyaluronic Acid. This mask is similar to Kiehl’s Cilantro Anti-Pollution Mask in that when you use it at night you wake up with soft skin in the morning. The best part about this Moon Fruit mask is the experience, the lovey lilac color that sinks into your skin and night appropriate lavender smell makes for a relaxing experience. This product feels like spring in a night-time treatment and is a joy to use. I’ve had no irritation when using this product and I have super sensitive skin on my face and body.

Another herbal smelling product is Kiehl’s Cucumber Conditioning Cleanser made for dry and sensitive skin with key ingredients glycerin and cucumber extract. The scent is light on the cucumber and more of an assorted plant or herbal smell. I love how gently this face wash removes makeup and cleanses my skin without drying it.

Cucumber Herbal Conditioning Cleanser

Glass Skin (pt. 2)

After any kind of exfoliation, it is necessary to hydrate your skin and strengthen the skin barrier. I’ve started using ROVECTIN liquid skin lotion from Sokoglam daily to protect my skin after bi-weekly exfoliation. 

The liquid lotion has caffeine extract which Sokoglam states is used to depuff your skin as well as hyaluronic acid and natural enzyme exfoliants. Before using this liquid lotion I like to use rose water. Then I apply liquid lotion, a serum, eye cream, and a face lotion. I’ve used Marc Jacob’s Youthquake for about one month and my bottle is practically done.

I like Youthquake’s gel-like texture. I prefer gel-like lotions in the spring and summer and richer custard-like lotions for the fall and winter. I enjoyed using my March Jacobs face lotion because it brightened my skin with pineapple extracts. I’ve now switched over to using Peter Thomas Roth moisturizer because I’m gravitating towards that brand and Kiehl’s again.

However, it is not due to any shortcoming from Marc Jacobs Youthquake. I think Youthquake is on par with Drunk Elephant Protini Polypeptide Moisturizer except it is slightly thicker. Currently, Neiman Marcus is selling Youthquake for only USD 29. Sokoglam sells the Rovectin for USD 29 as well. ❤

Rose Water & Lavender Body Wash ~ Support Small Business 🌹🌿

Welcome to my support small business series! Today, I’m reviewing two wonderful products from Nandi Skincare, a brand with products formulated by hand in North Carolina, USA.

This rose water is made with witch hazel and alcohol-free. It is generously formulated with fresh rose petals and rosebuds. On the bottle, it states to spray it onto a cotton ball or pad to use. I also like to spray the rose water directly into my hands when I come out of the shower and press it onto my skin.

I also love spraying the rose water on my hair and body. My skin has felt smooth and refreshed after using this product. It’s the perfect start to my skincare routine before I use liquid lotion (reviewed on glass-skin pt. 2). Rose water is also useful to use before steaming your face. I like to wet my face with rose water before facial steam because I find extractions are easier to do when my face is moisturized beforehand.

$12 USD, Rose Water

Rose Water Ingredients:

  1. Organic rose petals and buds
  2. Geranium floral water
  3. Alcohol-free Witch Hazel
  4. Vegetable glycerin
  5. Essential Oils

The Dark Polish Cleaning Cream is fragranced naturally with rosemary and lavender. This cleansing cream is fantastic to use on your body. I use it on my neck and upper body in the shower to even my skin tone and prevent breakouts. The lavender scent is subtle, spa-like, and aromatic. What’s great about it is that it makes my skin feel soft just like the rose water.

This small business series installment proudly features Nandi Skincare. Check out the locally made, all-natural products on the business website. ❤

Pore Correcting & Anti-Aging Skincare ~ Instant Results!

Finding products that work for enlarged pores is sometimes difficult. Here are my recommendations:

1.) Eminence Mangosteen Daily Resurfacing Concentrate –

Trust the widespread positive reviews because this concentrate works. I recommended this to an older family member with visibly large pores on her cheeks and this gets rid of it instantly and over time tightens and shrinks pores. I recommend trying this out or even seeking a sample of this product.

Mangosteen Concentrate link – http://tiny.cc/u7xbmz

2.) Pores no more primer –

This primer over the mangosteen concentrate works wonders to make pores smaller on your cheeks and nose. An added perk is that it feels silky and velvety and it does not make your skin greasy.

Primer link – http://tiny.cc/29xbmz

3.) Peter Thomas Roth Collagen Eye Cream – Anti-aging eye cream

I have been diving into Peter Thomas Roth products and loving it. I got this eye cream for my mother and she enjoys it. It helped her with plumping up the skin under her eyes. My mom also uses DERMALOGICA Biolumin-C Vitamin C Eye Serum and that product is specifically excellent at brightening dark circles. I love the brand Peter Thomas Roth so much I even ordered another type of under-eye cream for myself as well.

Pete Thomas Roth Eye Cream link – http://tiny.cc/idybmz

4.) BY TERRY Cellularose Liftessence Daily Cream –

I recently learned about the brand By Terry and now I wonder what I was doing with my life beforehand. This luxury brand makes all of its products rose-infused. I purchased the daily cream for my mom and she adores the luxuriating experience and soft spa-like rose scent of the product. She uses this face lotion after using NuFace. The results were major, she looked radiant and youthful after the treatment. See NuFace review on my blog as well.

TERRY day lotion link – http://tiny.cc/ubybmz

5.) Canadian Clay Pore Cleanser –

I received this product for free with my Sokoglam order. That’s the awesome thing about Sokoglam is that they often send full-sized products for free with your order. I love this mask because it bubbles on your face and can be used as a first or second step cleanse. The bubbles make it fun to use and the clay gets into your pores to cleanse and shrink them. It is an excellent product to use to perk up and clean your skin during the mid-week.