Glycolic Acid : The Path to Smoother Skin

Stop the press! I have found the secret to smooth glowing skin: Glycolic Acid.  You have probably heard of it, maybe even used it yourself.

So, what is Glycolic Acid, and how does it work?  Despite the scary sounding name, Glycolic Acid is a natural ingredient, and is actually taken from sugar cane.  In very simple terms, it works by removing the very outer layer of skin, leaving behind fresh new skin underneath.  In skincare products that can be used at home, the concentration will be fairly low (probably under 10%) although if having a professional treatment it will be anything from 50% upwards.  It is normal to feel a little bit of tingling when using products containing Alpha Hydroxy Acids (of which Glycolic Acid is one) this simply means it is penetrating the skin and doing its job.  What you shouldn’t experience, however, is burning, redness, or peeling.

 

Glycolic Acid: Alpha-H Liquid Gold, Nip+Fab Glycolic Cleansing fix, Nip+Fab Glycolic Fix Serum

 

Back in July I went on a little shopping trip, and bought a couple of skincare items (here, if you would like a read) one of which was the Nip+Fab Glycolic Fix Cleanser.  I was a little nervous about using the cleanser initially, what with it having ACID as an ingredient, but eventually I decided to man-up (in a very female way) and try it.  It turns out that my hesitance was unnecessary; there was no burning or smoking from my face – just super smooth, soft skin.  Result!  Some may argue that the Glycolic Acid content is too low to actually do any good (it is 2%), but I am certain that it has made a difference to my skin.  In collaboration with this, I have been using the Nip+Fab Glycolic Fix Serum , which contains a slightly higher concentration of Glycolic Acid: 4%.  In all honesty, I haven’t noticed a dramatic change after introducing this serum, it is a very thick, sticky product, that isn’t especially pleasant to apply.  You do need to wait for it to dry before applying moisturiser, which can be a bit of a faff in the morning, when time is short.  It hasn’t had a negative effect, so I will continue to use it, but probably would not repurchase it.

 

The real star of the show for me though, is the Alpha-H Liquid Gold.  This hugely raved about cult product really is as good as everyone says.  I actually came to own this because I had heard great things about the Alpha-H Absolute Eye Complex.  While researching the eye cream, I came across the Discovery Collection, which contains four small skin care products and is a great way to try out a skincare range without committing to full size products.  (I have mentioned before that I absolutely LOVE it when brands do this, it suits my fickle nature down to the ground).

Anyway, I digress.  Liquid Gold has 5% Glycolic Acid, and brightens the skin by giving it a little boost.  Best used three or four evenings a week, simply wet a cotton wool pad with the Liquid Gold, and wipe over the face after cleansing.  It is actually recommended that the skin is left to work uninterrupted overnight, which means not applying moisturiser.  Having quite dry skin, it really goes against the grain to not follow up with a rich night cream, I can tell you.  I initially expected to wake up looking like the Crypt Keeper, but actually the opposite was true.  When I use Liquid Gold (and I don’t use it more than three times a week) my skin is plumped, refreshed and smooth the following morning.

The reason that I actually reached for it (because, as I said, it was just a bonus item with a much wanted eye cream) was that I became frustrated that I couldn’t seem to find anything that would smooth out my bumpy forehead.  I don’t suffer hugely with spots (well, until recently but that’s a whole other blog post) but I have always had a lumpy forehead, which I believe is caused by congested pores.  I have tried all manner of methods to rid myself of the pesky bumps, and the combination of these Glycolic Acid skincare items has done the trick.

 

I would expect that anyone with very sensitive skin should approach any skincare products containing Glycolic Acid with caution.  For anyone looking for skin that is as fresh as a baby’s bot though, I would recommend finding your Glycolic Acid soul mate – you won’t regret it.

 

 

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Review: Soap & Glory

I shared with you recently my first impressions of a couple of new moisturisers.  I thought I would share a more detailed review, now that I have a feel for them.

 

L-R Speed Plump, For Daily Youth
L-R Speed Plump, For Daily Youth

 

Speed Plump:   Soap & Glory claim that this moisturiser will actually smooth out lines and wrinkles.  I wish that this were the case, but I guess that is a bit too much to ask for a £13 product.  However, this is a really nice moisturiser, that creates a soft, glowing base for makeup.   It smells great, is light (despite being formulated for dry skin) and it is very pleasing to apply. The name suggests it will leave skin plumped and hydrated, and that is exactly what it does, in my opinion. It somehow keeps my afternoon oily forehead under control, while also hydrating my dry bits all day long.  Speed Plump is one of the nicer day creams I have used in my time, and I may well repurchase it when I have finished this tube. I have been slightly afraid of parabens for a long time, so the fact that this cream is a paraben-free zone makes me very happy.  All in all a great find.

 

For Daily Youth:  I have been using this as a night cream, because the Lush serum bar that I had been using had a little accident.  Alright, if you must know, I left it on the windowsill and it melted.  Now, usually I like a nice rich night cream – which For Daily Youth is not – so I wasn’t sure if it would be too light.  However, I have found it to be just right for the summer, particularly after my post workout shower, when I don’t like to feel too hot and slimy (it takes me a good hour to cool down properly, even after showering.  Nice). It also smells like peaches and cream, which makes applying it a joy. For Daily Youth contains lots of hard working ingredients, and apparently ‘features our exclusive SUPERLUMINOUS™ BIOPEPTIDE COMPLEX ‘, along with ‘HIGHDRATION™ 365’ which quite frankly sound made up, but I would say that it softens and hydrates, so I am happy.

 

Have you ever tried and Soap & Glory skincare?  What is your favourite daily moisturiser, or night cream?

 

 

 

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My Super Speedy Summer Everyday Makeup

If I am truthful, and truthful is my middle name, I only wear ‘full – on’ makeup maybe once every fortnight.  Twice at a  push.  This is purely because of a lack of time, not desire.  I LOVE to do my makeup; I find it strangely therapeutic.  I adore choosing what I am going to use, and experimenting with different eye looks.  However, I am already late everywhere I go without spending an hour blending out my eyeshadow beforehand.  So here, my friends, are the products that I can pop on quickly for a fuss-free look, when I will be just pottering around and running errands.

 

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I start with my Maybelline Dream Fresh BB Cream, mixed with a little Dream Bronze Sunkissed Glow Perfector BB Cream.  The Bronze BB cream is designed to be used alone, but it is quite dark, even in Light/Medium, so I prefer to mix it with my favourite BB Cream.  Lovely Jubbly.  I then follow with the Freedom Makeup Pro Correct Palette.  This is a fairly new purchase, but I am really loving it for under my eyes and other areas that need a little more coverage.  It doesn’t completely cover my under eye circles – I have yet to find anything that does – what I like about it is the consistency. It is light and not at all drying, and I like being able to mix the exact shade that I need.  I choose not to set with any powder, because my skin can get very cakey if I am not careful.

Another new(ish) purchase is the Bourjois Aqua Blush in No.3 Pink Twice.  I am no stranger to cream blushers and cheek stains (I used the Body Shop lip and cheek tint for years, until quite recently), but this is the nicest I have ever used.  The colour is just right for my complexion (not the fairest of them all, but close) and it leaves a lovely hydrating little flush.  It doesn’t shift at all during the day either.  My bronzer of choice is the Body Shop Honey Bronze Bronzing Powder in No. 2.  This is a really lovely bronzer; it is subtle and buildable, and not at all glittery.  It looks nothing in the pan, the shade I have is only slightly darker than a face powder, but it is magical on the skin.  Next up is highlighter.  On ‘natural’ days I like to reach for my Makeup Academy Shimmer Highlighter in Pink Shimmer.  This has just the right amount of glow; which makes it visible, but not blinding.

To finish I curl my eyelashes – of course – and add a little bit of my current favourite mascara; Maybelline Big Eyes Rebel Black. I love this little guy.  It is thick, but not clumpy, and the little mini brush is perfect for the lower lashes.   I then follow with Maybelline Brow Drama in Dark Brown.  This is the only brow mascara-type product I have ever used (other than plucking them I have pretty much left them alone until recently), so I don’t know how it compares with other similar products.  I find that it gives me just enough colour to fill in any sparse areas, and holds without going rock-hard or flaky.

And that is it.  I can usually slap this little lot on in around five minutes, and be out the door in another 120 minutes or so (do you have any idea how long it takes to get a baby and a three year old ready? Ages, that’s how long).

Disclaimer:  Despite appearances, this post is not sponsored by Maybelline, I just happen to like quite a lot of their products.

Thanks for reading, as always!  Let me know in the comments below what your favourite quick-face products are, and do you switch it up depending on the season?

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My Morning Skincare Routine

I like to keeps things fairly simple in the morning.  With a baby that refuses to sleep through the night, I can’t say that I leap joyfully out of bed in the morning, so I need a quick and straightforward regime. I am currently using only three products, with the addition of various primers when I apply makeup.  I haven’t included those, because they change with my mood, and I don’t consider them part of my daily routine.

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 Lush Angels on Bare Skin cleanser

I wash my face in the shower in the am, so I like a cleanser that can be washed off without the need for fiddly cotton wool, or muslin cloths.  My skin cam be very dry, so foaming cleansers are out too. I discovered this lovely cleanser a few weeks ago, and, as I mentioned in my May Favourites, it – along with a couple of other changes that I made recently – has changed my skin for the better.  It starts off as a solid, and as water is mixed with it, a paste is formed, which gently cleanses and exfoliates the skin.  My only issue is the little lavender flowers, I’m not convinced they need to be there, and they mostly end up being washed down the plug hole because they don’t mix in with the rest of the cleanser.

Origins GinZing Moisuriser

This is a fabulous lightweight moisturiser, with a lovely fresh fragrance.  Origins claim that it brightens, and while I haven’t noticed that, I do find it to be hydrating without being greasy, so my skin is left feeling smooth but not slimy.  One thing to note though is the lack of SPF.

Origins GinZing Eye Cream

In my eternal quest for an eye cream that will magically make my dark circles disappear, I stumbled across this little guy.  It can be used twice a day, but I only use it in the morning as I have a separate night eye cream.  I find that it doesn’t work especially well under concealer, so I often skip it if I am doing a full face, because it almost goes lumpy.  Because it is illuminating it does make me look slightly more awake, and a little bit goes a long way.  I can’t vouch for its depuffing qualities as I don’t have a problem with eye bags or puffiness, and I have no idea if it has helped in the battle against fine lines – ask me again in 20 years.

Do you like to keep it simple in the morning, or do you like to pamper yourself before you face the day?

 

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