Skincare 101: How to Start a Routine

bluemercury_skincare_header_mobile.jpg

 

If you follow me, you know I am all about skincare. A good skincare routine is essential to keeping your skin glowing and looking as youthful as can be, no matter how many times you celebrate your 21st birthday.

Starting a skincare routine can seem daunting and very overwhelming. Do you need toner? Eye Cream? Retinol? How much money should your eye cream even cost? $10, $20, $80?

Let’s all take a deep breath together and I’ll break things down for you
& your very first skincare routine! Ready, let’s talk skincare!

#1 Cleanser – This is the base of your skincare routine. You want a cleanser that’s effective in removing your makeup and the days Friné from your face.

Depending on your skin tone, you’ll want a cleanser that targets a specific concern you have. For me it’s oil control & acne clearing. My favorite cleanser for this is Clean and Clear benzoyl peroxide wash. It keeps my skin clear & shine free.

#2 Toner – This is and should always be the second thing you do after washing your face. Toner helps to remove any final impurities from the skin while soothing and repairing. It also preps your skin for the next steps in your regime. I love this Witch Hazel toner, it’s the bomb.com.

#3 Serum – Here’s where you can apply serums depending on your skin’s needs. For myself, I focus on brightening and oil control. I love to add a Vitamin C serum with oil control benefits, followed by my FAVORITE serum from Clarin’s, their Hydra-Essential Bi Phase to give my skin a radiance boost. I swear this serum alone has made my skin glow, highly recommend. If you don’t know where to start, any serum with Vitamin C is a sure  bet. The serum will brighten your skin while helping fine lines and your tone. I love to switch my serums up depending on my skin’s needs that week and for my oily girls, no worries as adding an oil to your regime will NOT make your skin oilier. On the contrary, it helps balance our your skin!

#4 Moisturize – THIS IS SO IMPORTANT. IF YOU DO ONE THING, DO THIS. I cannot stress this enough, moisturizing is key to good skin. This step along helps keep skin hydrated, acts a barrier so daily irritants doesn’t enter your skin, and helps your skins tone & texture. It can also help keep fine lines at bay and balance your skin. Like I said, if you pick one thing from this list, pick this one! I love the moisturizer from Olay, it’s amazing and has added benefits like anti-aging.

#5 Eye Cream – I take my eye cream seriously as I do NOT want crow’s feet early on. When applying make sure to dab lightly onto your crow’s feet and under the eye area, DAB not rub. Pick a cream that’s on the thicker side as this hydrates the delicate eye area better. My favorite is this Olay one. (I swear Olay’s creams are the shiiiitttt)

#6 BONUS: Retinol – This is essential to good skin once you hit your mid twenties. Including a retinol in your regime does a ton of good for your skin. It helps control oil and reduce pore size; it also helps reduce fine lines and prevent wrinkles from forming. This miracle cream can also help fade discoloration and brighten your skin. Prescription strength ones work best, but over the counter options are just as good. Try this one from Peter Thomas Roth. Retinol will dry your skin out though so make sure to hydrate and moisturize your skin plenty!

If you want to add a weekly step to  your routine, make sure you are exfoliating! Doing this 1-2x a week will help slough off dead skin cells and reveal your radiant & smooth skin below. I’ve made my own using honey, brown sugar and essential oils.

Now you’re ready to take on the skin care world, one step at a time! What are your favorite skincare tips? Share below! xo

Advertisements

5 Minute Make-Up Challenge ft. Henna Ali

My good friend and Beauty YouTuber, Henna, recently invited me to do a collab video with her. It was all fun and games until she told me this would be a 5 minute makeup challenge and well let’s just say I almost took my eye out and spent the video with one eye crying. Watch below!

Follow her here and here 🙂


xx

signature

My Top 5 Matte Liquid Lipsticks

If you know me, you know I have a slight matte liquid lipstick obsession. By obsession I mean I’ve tried countless brands and own a little over 65 lippies. After all the brands I’ve gone through I’ve started to have some favorites. I’m rounding up my top 5 brands below.


#5 Colourpop: For the price, these liquid lippies take the cake. Their formula and feel is very very VERY similar to a Kylie lip kit & they have so many colors to pick from. These are a bit drying though and sometimes the formula can go on uneven which is why they are last on my list. ($6)

#4 Stila: This was the first liquid lipstick I tried and thus started my obsession. These smell good and look good on. They have a range of colors and have decent staying power. If you don’t eat anything oily or greasy, they can last 8+ hours on. They are a bit on the drying side though. ($24)

#3 MAC RetroMatte: These are the bomb.com! The formula is SO GOOD. Easy to apply, long lasting (food and kiss proof) and your lips feel good while you have it on, not dry and cracking. Their nude colors are my top picks hands down! ($21)

#2 SmashBox: I was so surprised when I tried these out and saw how good they are! They are great on price and look AMAZING on. Almost every color I’ve tried looks good. The applicator can be tricky, but this formula feels so soft on and stays on 10+ hours. Even through a greasy burger my lipstick stays fleeky. ($24)

#1 Kat Von D: My top pick for every reason you can think of. It’s applicator makes applying without a lip liner a breeze. The formula is amazing and moisturizing and your lips never crack while wearing it. It won’t feather or bleed after hours of eating and drinking and it doesn’t fade off. The colors are all vibrant and eye catching. All around an amazing liquid lipstick and worth every penny. ($20)

What are your favorite brands? Comment below ! Till next time my fabulous readers!

XO

April Beauty Must Haves

  1. Sol De Janeiro Brazilian Kiss Cupuacu Lip Butter– Growing up I had like 30 chapsticks at once, now in my mid-20s, not much has changed except for the brands I hoard. This Lip Butter was a great addition to my obsession collection. It smells like summer and is very moisturizing. It keeps my lips hydrated for hours and leaves my lips looking healthier. ($18)

 

  1. Hype Nail Polish – An all natural nail polish brand from my very own hometown. What won me over with these polishes was the color vibrancy. They go on colorful and stay nice and shiny for about 9 days, which is great for a non gel polish. ($8 each)

 

  1. Tartan &Twine Travel Bags – When I travel I take a ridiculous amount of makeup and about 80% of my skincare routine products with me and I like it all to be organized. These makeup bags have helped me do just that. They come with multiple compartments to store whatever you need and they fit SO MUCH. I took this with me to New York and I swear it was so perfect. They also come in the cutest prints and have a hook so you can hook it behind a door! ($30)

 

  1. DCL Detoxifying Clay Mask – Raise your hand if you are a mask junkie as I am! ::raises hand:: This mask is awesome! It is dermatologist approved and helps clear the gunk out of your pores. After using twice a week for a month I noticed my pores looked tighter and I had reduced my blackheads. It also helps to stop breakouts whenever I get a really bad one. ($50)

 

  1. Algenist REVEAL Luminating Drops– This is my first experience with drops and it was a good one. This is more of an illuminating then correcting formula. It has anti-aging properties which is a great bonus. I use it two ways: first being mixing it into my foundation for an overall glow & secondly as a highlighter in specific areas I wanted a little extra shimmer. I like that this is subtle yet makes my skin look healthy.  ($38)

 

  1. Batiste Dry Shampoo – If you know me personally, you know that my hair is 80% dry shampoo all the time. Being a redhead it helps me avoid washing my color out on a weekly basis, so I’ve tried a ton of shampoos. This one is by far a favorite! It leaves white residue but comes out fast and smells great. It leaves my hair oil free and restores the volume. Plus, for the price it’s a major deal. ($6)

 

  1. Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick – Like masks, I am also obsessed with matte liquid lipsticks. I stumbled across this brand while browsing Sephora and I now want to buy every color known to man. The formula is soft and doesn’t dry your lips out. It goes on super easy and with great color, plus does not move or fade no matter how much you drink or eat. I love it even more than the Stila ones. ($20)

 

  1. AOA Scrubby Facial Cleansing Pad– This little face scrubbing tool is only ONE DOLLAR and it’s awesome! I use it to gently exfoliate my skin in the morning. It’s made from a silicone material that’s soft and east on your skin. I also stick it in my overnight bag when I travel when I can’t take my Clarisonic with me to make sure my skin is still being exfoliated. For a $1, this is a must buy. ($1)

 

  1. Instant Perfection Peel Pads– I use one of these bad boys right before my makeup to smooth my skin and close pores to help give my skin a perfect canvas for makeup. They gently exfoliate my skin with daily use and help my skin give a more even texture. ($49)

 

  1. Anastasia Brow Gel Clear – If you are a fellow make up obsessed woman, I feel like you already know that anything Anastasia is AMAZING. This brow gel has become a staple in my makeup bag, I use it alone on days where I’m not wearing much makeup to keep my brows tamed and then on days I fill in my brows I use it to set them in place. ($22)

March Beauty Must-Haves

Hello my beautiful readers. I’m back with my 10 favorite beauty products of the month which have all been personally tested by muah so you can trust that if it’s on here, it’s good. This month I’m including a facial exfoliator that rivals the famous Kate Somerville, matte lippies that won’t budge, a highlight stick and skin perfecting tool that you need to add to your skincare routine. Let’s get to it!

tftb-3799-1

  1. Trufora Triple Action Exfoliator– If you know me, you know how much I loved Kate Somerville’s exfoliakate but the price tag is border line ridiculous for a teeny tiny amount. Allow me to introduce you to a product ever better than the Somerville cult favorite. This Trufora exfoliator is down right AMAZING. I use this twice a week and in month my skin has improved significantly. My pores are pretty much gone and with my pores went the dullness as well. I can see a brighter complexion by using this and I’ve also experienced less breakouts. WINNING. I cannot stress enough how much I love this product and it’s half the price of its competitor. ($45)

 

  1. 2. Stacked SkinCare Dermaplaning Tool– This little tool is a total game changer. Safely remove peach fuzz and dead skin cells with this non-invasive exfoliation tool for instantly smoother and brighter skin. Designed to provide similar results to an in-office dermaplaning treatment, this at-home tool gently purifies skin of dead cell build-up and fine facial hair to reveal a bright, youthful-looking complexion. It was scary at first to use but ever so satisfying to see all my peach fuzz and dead skin come off, plus my skin looked SO GOOD after.  ($75)

 

  1. Sesderma Factor G Serum– Sesderma is by far one of my favorite skin care brands, I’ve included other awesome products in previous round ups, see here. This time I’m raving about their Factor G Serum, which is made to help protect your skin from aging while helping improve dark spots and skin texture. This powerful concentrate helps to stimulate cell regeneration that aids in making your skin look better and keeping it look young as ever. I use it in the morning before my usual routine and then again at night time. ($57)

 

  1. Trestique Perfect Multipurpose Highlight Stick – This little stick has become a makeup bag staple. The creamy highlight glides on and I can blend it on the go with the built in perfecting sponge. I also found the sponge helps give me a perfect dewy look where my skin looks perfect. The caps are magnetic too which I loved ! It helps avoid any makeup bag mishaps. ($34)

 

  1. MAC Retro Matte Collection – If you follow me on the gram’ I’m sure you’ve seen me mention these quite a bit already so it’s no surprise they made the list. I love the newest line from MAC. An earthy toned collection of true matte liquid lipsticks. These bad boys stay on your lips and do not over dry them which was a huge selling point for me. The line has stunning colors one of my favorites being Carnivorous (seen here) ($21)

 

  1. Yes to Tomatoes Charcoal Mud Mask– THIS MASK. I am obsessed with it. It is made with charcoal and salicylic acid so it helps draw out the nasty stuff and detoxify my skin while treating existing breakouts. I use this once every two weeks to help keep my skin clear. I also use it as my emergency remedy when I suffer a bad breakout. I can feel it cleaning y skin when I have it on and it cuts the breakouts longevity in half. ($15.99)

 

  1. Big Sexy Hair Silk Finish– This is a newer product from the already loved brand. I tested this on both my wet and dry hair and loved it both ways. Your hair seriously feels like SILK when using this. The serum is light and not greasy so my hair doesn’t get weighed down and gross looking. I noticed that when I used it, I had less frizz and spilt ends which is a big win for me. This is great for all types of hair but especially those with wavy and curly hair who need a little extra help taming their beast. ($20)

 

  1. Hair La Vie Revitalizing Hair Blend – I’m a big supplement fan and love anything I can take for my skin or hair. Recently, I started to experience some scalp issues and noticed a bit more hair falling out than usual and I instantly freaked and needed something to help keep my hair and scalp healthy. I stumbled across Hair La Vie and loved adding this to my hair treatment. These pills are filled with good stuff like biotin, Vitamin A, Vitamin K, and Flax Seed Oil. All these work together to help maintain my hair at its healthiest and help the growth. I noticed I had less hair loss while on the pills and that sold me. ($48)

 

  1. Robin McGraw Revelation’s Starlight, Face Bright  – Recently I finished up my night cream so I had to try a new one and this one was a winner. I like to use this every other night switching off with an anti-aging night cream. This brightening wonder cream is made with Vitamin C to help protect my skin from free radicals while still helping brighten my skin and lessen my acne marks. I also saw an improvement in my pore size which was a great plus. ($50)

 

  1. Neutrogena On The Spot Acne Treatment-I’ve spent the last few months in a full blown battle with my skin and just when I was ready to give up, I found this while wandering the aisles of Target. A Benzoyl Peroxide spot treatment that has worked ridiculously well on my pimples, even my cystic ones. I put it on and within a day or two, the size and redness is significantly reduced. I was surprised at how well this worked for my cystic acne, which is what I was struggling with the most. You just need to make sure to not mix with another acne treatment as it can dry out your skin. ($6)

 

 

December Beauty Must Haves

I can’t believe this is my last round up for the year! 6 month of beauty favorites are coming to an end. This month I saved the best for last. Some of these products have become staples in my beauty stash and I promise you that you’ll love them just as much. Most items on this month’s list are skin care related and there’s no better time to ramp up your skin care regime than the New Year. Let’s start shall we?!

Processed with VSCO with a5 preset

  1. Sesderma Sensyses Lightening Cleanser – I was recently introduced to this brand and have fallen in love with almost everything they have. This cleanser is something like a micellar water but better. This serves as a makeup remover and cleanser in one and also helps your skin up the brightness with vitamin C. I’ve run out of this twice already and restocked. There are also 4 other types to help with different skin issues such as aging and acne. ($19.90)
  1. Masqueology Cream Sheet Masks – So straight up, these are messy but so good. First off, they’re Korean facial masks and if you know your beauty, Korean products are the shit. These sheet masks come in 4 types, my fav being the Vita Clarifying Cream Mask. You put it on your face, sit back for 20 minutes and then massage the rest of the cream in. It’s a mini spa treatment and your skin will thank you. ($2.50 each)
  1. FragranceLock – I love perfume but I always hate that it doesn’t last long, especially on days I’m running around. This finishing spray sets out to solve that problem but locking in your fragrance for 12 whole hours! I tested this out and it really did keep me smelling like Flowerbomb for the whole day. You just spray your favorite perfume, wait a few minutes and then spray this on top. So easy to use ! ($30)
  1. Chella Anti-Fatigue Eye Mask – This time of year for me is insane and my under eye circles come out to play due to lack of sleep. This little treatment has helped me so much. You put it on while getting ready in the morning and it helps to relieve the puffiness and darkness under your eyes so you can look awake even though you slept at most 3 hours. ($9)
  1. Vitamin E Oil – I added this my skincare regime about a month ago after reading all its benefits and I can truly say it’s helped my skin so much. I use retinol and one of its side effects is peeling skin. Vitamin E helps keep my skin healthy and hydrated and stops it from flaking. It also helps my fine lines and makes my skin look glowy and plump. Make sure you use pure Vitamin E oil to get all the benefits and then just apply a bit before bed and allow it to do it’s magic. ($7.99)
  1. Golden Peel-a-Way Masque – This mask is GOLD literally and figuratively. It is pricey but honestly I love this thing! It was so fun to apply to leave on, if you follow me on snap & IG, you saw my obnoxious posts with it on messing around. This mask feels so good on the skin and works to refresh skin and penetrate deeply to life impurities and dead skin cells. When you peel it off, peel upwards and then reveal flowing skin! Make sure to tone and moisturize after! ($68)
  1. Dermalogica® Best-Selling Brightening Duo – These are two of the brand’s best sellers and when used together your face will thank you. I cannot stress enough how important exfoliating is for healthy skin. You wash you face with the cleanser and then exfoliate. It helps to take away built up skin and also helps lighten any uneven skin pigmentation and calm redness. I felt like it helped my texture over time and it gave my skin a nice glow. ($65)
  1. The Beachwaver Co. Beachwaver S1.25 Ceramic Rotating Curling Iron – VICTORIA SECRET MODEL HAIR. That is what this magical rotating curling iron does. It gives you the prettiest waves with tons of va va voom! Key benefits include a heat range of 290° – 490°, lighter 5.5” ceramic barrel length, 1.25 barrel width, arrow button for rotation control, 8 foot swivel cord, ergonomic handle, beveled no-kink clamp, fast/slow speed switch and a home button. ($129)
  1. Face The Day – This is sooooo great for us ladies living in Miami. A SPF 30 cream with primer!! It protects you from the sun and its damage and preps your skin for makeup. I love that it helps me cut one part of my skin routine in the morning. Anything for 5 min extra of sleep. ($14.62)
  1. Daily Exfoliating Serum – Another product from Golden Door is on this list because honestly their products are so damn good. SOOOOOO GOOOD. You apply this serum at night and over time it helps to exfoliate your skin to reduce fine lines and pore size. I can say this has helped my pore size significantly! You have to moisturize though or it will leave you with flaky skin! ($88)

 

 

 

 

Geneva Naturals #BloggersWhoBrunch

IMG_3430.JPG

Happy Monday babes! Hoping you all had a fantastic weekend. Recently I got together with some of my blogger boos for the first ever #BloggerWhoBrunch with Geneva Naturals and let me say it was such a fun brunch! Our kind host, Geneva Naturals, is a new skincare line that just stepped on the market that’s made with rare ingredients such as Edelweiss, which is found in the beautiful Swiss Alps. Geneva Naturals is for the woman who never takes a break — whether that be in motherhood, her career, or anything that she endeavors. A line to help get your skin in check and reveal its true beauty all while keeping their products at an affordable price point. It’s luxury skin care without the luxury price tag.

IMG_3128.JPG

While brunching at the delicious DÔA  on South Beach, we were able to try out their first three products, which include:

Advanced Vitamin C+E Oil – features 20% Vitamin C and Edelweiss combined with Hyaluronic Acid, Coconut Oil, Moringa Oil & Vitamin E, this serum is specifically formulated to restore firmness and reduce the appearance of fine lines and deep wrinkles, restoring your skin to its natural state of beauty.

 Advanced Anti-Aging Moisturizer with SPF (both scented and unscented) – Moisturizer Cream with SPF 20 features Edelweiss combined with Hyaluronic Acid, Coconut Oil, Moringa Oil and Vitamin E this day cream is specifically formulated to restore firmness and provide and every day protection from the sun for a more youthful and vibrant skin.

 Advanced Anti-Aging Retinol Cream – features Retinol and Edelweiss combined with Hyaluronic Acid, Coconut Oil, Moringa Oil & Vitamin E, this night cream is specifically formulated to restore firmness and reduce the appearance of fine lines and deep wrinkles.

So far my favorite of the bunch has been the Vitamin C+E Oil. It smells so good and goes on the skin smoothly without leaving any type of residue behind. I see my skin brighter and more hydrated after using it for a week! Must try if you ask me.Lucky for you I’m giving all my readers 20% off with code TG20 so you can try these bad boys out for yourself.

IMG_3312.JPG

After testing out the products we were treated to multiple LatAsian fusion dishes that were down right mouth watering and I made sure to wash them down with cognac cocktails and Whispering Angels Rose wine. Best part of the entire experience was the ladies I was able to spend some quality time with. Thank you to Geneva Naturals for bringing such a great group of ladies together for a fun afternoon! Till next time loves. xx

IMG_3248.JPG

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Geneva Naturals and The bLink Marketing Network. The opinions and text are all mine.