Thursday, February 21, 2013

Natural Skincare Haul

As might be evident by some of my most recent beauty-related pins, I've become pretty inspired by one of my favorite YouTubers (Christine of Pink So Foxy) to take a more natural route with some of my skincare.  I've been watching Christine since last Fall and have really grown to admire her genuine personality and I've fallen in love with her DIY skincare-related videos.  I've done a few DIY scrubs and face masks in the past and have enjoyed them and saw great results, but never stuck with using them for very long.  I have fairly problematic skin.  I suffer from VERY oily, acne-prone skin with enlarged pores and quite a bit of overall redness.  From the overflow of skincare samples I receive in beauty boxes and from my own purchases, I've tried an obscene number of skincare products over the past couple of years.  From drugstore to extremely high-end (hello, $225 moisturizer), I've tried everything in hopes of seeing an improvement in my skin.  Unfortunately none of the conventional products I've tried to this point have ever really blown me away.

Over the past month or so I've been slowly using up and running out of some of my essential skincare products (mainly toner, moisturizer, and eye cream).  My favorite moisturizer to date bears a hefty price tag, so I've been using up various little moisturizer samples from my stash in hopes of putting off having to repurchase the $50 moisturizer.  During this process, I finally started using a deluxe sample of Tarte's Maracuja Oil that I received with a makeup set I purchased well over a year ago.  For the past few weeks I've been using a few drops of the maracuja oil mixed with a couple of drops of tea tree oil as my nighttime moisturizer.  I've since seen a decrease in the frequency of breakouts and I've noticed my skin appears brighter and more even in texture.  Seeing my skin react so favorably to such a simple, natural routine has been the push for me to jump into transforming parts of my skincare routine.  Being hesitant to spend so much money on commercial skincare products that are full of cheap filler ingredients also makes the transition a pleasant one.  For a fraction of the cost of expensive skincare products, I can simply my routine by using only natural, beneficial ingredients and avoid putting needless, irritating chemicals on my skin.

I recently purchased several products from Vitacost and a couple others from Trader Joe's.  Most of the items I purchased are for specific scrub recipes that I'll be sharing with you in a few days.  A few of the other items will be worked into my skincare/haircare as is.  I've already given a few of these products a try since purchasing them, and I have to say the stand-out item thus far is the Vanilla Monoï Oil (which I was introduced to by Christine in this video).  Monoï Oil is coconut oil that has been infused with Tahitian gardenias (and this particular version has also been infused with vanilla beans).  Trust me, it smells just as amazing as it sounds!  After showering, before drying off, I like to rub this oil into my skin as a moisturizer in place of lotion or body butter.  It absorbs fairly quickly and leaves your skin soft and smelling out of this world.  Because coconut oil is typically solid at room temperature, I suggest keeping the Monoï Oil in your shower.  It will warm up and melt with the heat of your shower and will be perfectly liquid and ready to use by the time you're finished washing up.

I'll be sharing a few recipes for how I used some of these other items later this week and I'll keep you all posted as I continue on my DIY, natural skincare routine.  If you're interesting in purchasing any of these items or already use some natural products in your skincare, I highly suggest you check out Vitacost!  They offer the best prices I've seen on natural oils and the like (half the price or less than what local stores charge for the exact same items), so if you're a bargain shopper like I am,  you'll love them!  If you are interested in placing an order, you may want to take advantage of their referral program.  When you place an order using a referral link, you will receive $10 off any order of $30 or more and the individual who referred you will also receive a $10 credit.  If you'd like to take advantage to save $10, here is my referral link.

I'd love to know if you use any natural oils, butters, etc. in your skincare and, if so, what your favorites are.


  1. Sounds like we have the exact same skin! I've had good success with natural products in the past too, including the Thayer's toner you have pictured.

    Do you know if the Vanilla Manoi Oil is available here in Lexington?

    1. I'm loving the Thayer's toner thus far! It leaves my skin so hydrated that I could skip any moisturizer if I wanted to.

      Unfortunately I'm not sure if the Vanilla Monoi Oil is available anywhere in Lexington. Whole Foods *may* carry it, but I'm not sure. They seemed to have a fairly decent variety of natural skincare items when I was looking there recently. I wasn't looking specifically for Monoi Oil though, so I didn't happen to notice if they carried it or not. Maybe try calling around to a few local health food stores?

  2. I am excited about this; I'll be very interested to see all your thoughts on natural products as my skin is crazy, ridiculously sensitive thanks to the chronic erysipelas. Funny sidenote: while reading through this at lunch today, I definitely read MARIJUANA oil instead of MARACUJA oil...and I work daily to help kids read. Teacher fail.

    1. LOL, Marijuana Oil. Not sure that would have the same skincare benefits as Maracuja. ;)

      I'll keep you all updated on how my skin/hair is improving (or not, whichever is the case) with the new products I'm using. I'm fortunate that while I have several skin concerns, I don't have particularly sensitive skin. I can get away with using some pretty harsh products and the worst my skin ever reacts to anything is with a little dryness if I stick with a particular harsh routine for several days in a row. I do think going the natural route can be one of the most gentle options for sensitive skin. You certainly still have to be cautious and do your research (and perhaps consult your doctor if you have a skin condition) because natural products, essential oils especially, should still be used with caution.


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