— thebarebeauty

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Skin Problems
Korea brand - Mizon, makes good quality skincare products. Interesting packaging, and my skin seems to like their products.

Korea brand – Mizon, makes good quality skincare products. Interesting packaging, and my skin seems to like their products.

Many of my male friends have always been squeamish about the idea of putting snail byproduct on their skin. Snail cream is essentially made up of snails’ slime, or mucus (eek! I know) However, beauty always come with a price to pay, and in this instance, putting yucky stuff on your face isn’t all that disgusting as you may think. First launched by Korean brand Missha, the snail cream is touted to soothe, regenerate and heal skin.  This magic wonder snail secretion, as it may sound, is said to reduce wrinkles, soothe acne prone skin, as well as heal scars and burns.

Using snails as a skin treatment is actually nothing new. It was dated back to the Ancient Greeks where it was reported that people crushed snails and used them to treat inflamed skin. Now, already into its third or fourth year since the initial launch of the first snail cream product, this is actually no longer a happening beauty fad.

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We all know exercising does wonders for our body. Supposing exercise should also benefit our body’s largest organ – our skin. Is it really the case? Or does it make you more prone to acne?

acne after sweating

I started actively exercising about 4 months ago. I was working up serious sweats once every two days, or if not, daily.  I was so intrigued initially by the glow my skin gets from the workouts, happily driving myself to work insanely harder and harder, thinking that the sweating means purging out toxins and I’ll be looking all radiant and smoothed-skin.

However, I was disappointed. It was not the case. After each session, I would find a small pustule (whitehead) growing. Every single time. Having clear skin all my life did not help my franticness to find a cause and work a solution to keep those zits away.

Sweat is made up of mostly water, with small amounts of urea, ammonia, salt and sugar. When you sweat, these impurities are flushed out from your skin. Exercising increases the blood flow to your skin, and sweating helps to unclog your pores. If this is so, what could be causing the outbreaks?

What are the possible causes of acne post workouts?

  • Clogged pores filled with sebum and makeup (especially if your makeup is not ‘non-comedogenic’)
  • Dead skin cells slough off and are trapped in your pores. And because your skin cant breathe, it could result in acne.
  • Hair that sweeps across your face carries oil and dirt, which again explains why a clean face is important
  • Bacteria is everywhere and with shared exercise equipments in common gyms it is likely they are the breeding ground for germs and bacteria. These could get onto your hands when you touch the same machines.
  • Unclean towels is an obvious cause and we do not want to be wiping our faces with them.
  • Stress, though not exactly related to your exercise routine, can cause acne outbreaks. Supposing you have a hard workout session and subconsciously, it stresses your body to push yourself harder.
  • Over-washing of your face before and post working out might cause irritation and drying out of your skin which in turn could lead to the formation of acne.

To determine an exact cause to post exercising acne is challenging. Be sure to check that you are encouraging hygiene as much as possible to eradicate the problem.

Check that you are :

  • Blot face with oil blotters to remove excess oil before working out. If washing with a facial cleanser is too dry, just add a splash of water and pat dry.
  • Skip makeup before exercising will save you one time of washing the face.
  • Remove makeup if you must have them applied before your workout session. Avoid applying any skincare products before working out. These may clog up your pores if not absorbed into the skin.
  • Cleansing gently. Rubbing or tugging on your skin may cause excessive abrasion and irritation, thus increasing the chance of acne.
  • Wash your hands thoroughly after exercising, before touching your face. Bacteria is all over  your hands from contact with the exercise machines.
  • Avoid touching your face during exercise. If do, please ensure it is with a clean towel. Avoid randomly throwing your towel over machine handles or on the floor. Remember, germs are everywhere!
  • Use a mild cleanser. Choose one that is mild so it wouldn’t strip off your skin’s natural moisture.
  • Antibacterial formula face washes ensure your skin is thoroughly clean and free from bacteria. Tea tree oil and Neem oil formulas are good antibacterial choices.
  • Don’t wait too long after your workout to give your face a clean wash. The longer your wait, the longer the sweat and oils have to form blockages on your skin.
  • Hydrate your skin well after washing. Cleansers tend to strip of the skin’s natural moisture and oil that serve to moisturize the skin. Remember to use a good hydrator after wash.
  • Cover equipments at the gym as they are filled with sweat, germs, bacteria and grime!

I didn’t know what attributed to my outbreak the initial 3 months of me back to being physically active. I did everything I have listed above, I couldn’t pinpoint it to any one cause. I’m just thankful I hardly get any pimples nowadays. It is important to practice hygiene especially getting rough-and-rugged outdoors, afterall, don’t we all want to look good?

Do you share a similar experience?  Share with us by leaving a comment below!

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Blackhead removal can be quite a headache, especially for people with oily or combination skin types like myself. Once you spot those blackheads, removing them will become quite an every day affair.

There are many methods and tools to remove blackheads, but it really depends on what works best for you. My beautician always scares me about how I must not squeeze my blackheads because I might scar my face.

I have been experimenting for a while, and trust me, this can be easily done at home…And it promises a much improved condition.

Using food methods :

1. Lemon – (I swear by this!)

lemons
Buy fresh lemon and squeeze out the juice. Dab your Q-tip with lemon juice and dab it over blackhead prone skin. You will feel a tingling prickly sensation when applied. Leave to dry and wash off with water after 30 minutes. Some websites tell you to leave overnight but for me it does the same effect.

Lemon dissolves the dirt stuck in your pores, and helps to remove the blackheads better afterward. It has a tightening effect too, thus “pushing” the blackheads out for better extraction.You can keep the lemon juice in a bottle in the fridge for up to a week or more, but the freezer may be better.

** Lemon has a slight bleaching effect. If you are dark, don’t keep it on for too long.

2. Honey 
Honey is very good for your skin. Apply warm honey on the affected area and wash after 10 minutes. It acts as a natural peel to blackhead affected skin. It can be used all over the face, but be careful it’s not too hot. This helps improve skin condition and gives skin a natural glow.

3. Baking Soda / Sodium Bicarbonate

baking soda 2
Mix equal amount of baking soda with water, rub it on for a few minutes on the affected area. Afterwards, wash off with lukewarm water and the blackheads are removed.

Followed by : My own tried-and-tested favorite method is to use either one of the above, wash off with lukewarm water, and put on a pore pack strip. Remember to look for one that has a cloth-like texture. I personally do not recommend the paper ones as they dry up into hard paper, and does not adhere so well to the contours of your nose.

001-Kosé-Bioré-Pore-Cleansing-Nose-Strips-Pack-Review

My best and favorite brands are Biore, and any of the brands that are  “Made in Japan”. Do not be fooled by those with japanese wordings faking to be made in Japan, when most are not.

Try other methods :

1. Metal Extractor: I do not like this… it seems like I get a scar on my nose every time I use it. It doesn’t work on stubborn blackheads, unless you steam your face enough before using it.

blackhead tool

2. Tea Tree Oil: facial products containing tea tree oil are very good for blackheads.

3. Scrubs: Use exfoliating products with low potency benzoyl peroxide for the removal of dead skin cells.

4. Reduce Oil, More Water: Always remember… we are what we eat. Try to eat less oily food and drink more water. This will really reduce the oil secretion on your skin.

5. Light Squeezing: Make sure your hands are clean. I find it easier to manage than the metal extractor.
*Tip: Always steam or wash your face with lukewarm water to open up the pores before squeezing. Avoid using finger tips or nails — just use your fingers.

Conclude : Personally, I am still using lemon juice for my blackheads. I apply them once every two days and it does reduce the blackheads. I use my nose pore pack once every 5-7 days. Before I use them, I’ll apply lemon juice to dissolve the stubborn dirt stuck in my pores. After washing it off, paste on the strips. Do not leave the pores open after removing the blackheads. I use my egg white mask afterward to tighten, then tone, and moisturize.

How do you remove blackheads?

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Time to stop looking at magazines and set your new resolutions based on the  flawless looking pictures of models and stars alike. We all, by now, should know about Photoshop, advertisers’ best friend, to make even the ugliest – pretty! No one has skin with no fine lines, no visible pores, crystal clear skin thats evenly toned.

I am 32 this year, and like everyone else, I constantly struggle with my skin. There are good times, and bad times. I have ‘hardworking’ days where I diligently upkeep with my skincare routine; there are also days where I just get too tired and skip my skin regimens too.

Here is a shot of my skin (face) under harsh white light. No photoshop, not adjustments, no makeup. Not perfect, yes. Not even that close in my opinion.

image

At 32, I have starting-to-sag skin, open visible pores, blackheads, acne scar on my forehead, unsightly moles, forming laugh lines at the side of my mouth, sallow looking skin.

Yet, I am as diligent as I can be, in the hope of trying to delay any signs of aging. At this moment, I have never tried any cosmetic surgery procedures, never splurge extravagantly on facial packages, and pretty moderate on my skincare product spendings. I am a believer of natural / holistic remedies, and I used to blog my beauty remedies actively on “For Beauty Sake”, before I closed it indefinitely a year plus ago.

This blog serves as a platform for me to actively share and engage my readers in my quest to good skin, looking its best and glowing healthily. I am passionate about equipping myself with the knowledge to maximize the efficacy of the products we use, therefore I never stop learning. Please feel free to share with me some of your firm beliefs, your favorite products, so to allow me to have the opportunity to try and review with my readers.

Till my next blog post, here is a quick reminder for everyone’s who’s reading now :

Have you drank your 8 glasses of water today?

*Drinking water keeps your skin hydrated, makes it look plump and helps to delay any signs of aging! And, its free! Please drink up today!

Love,

B

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Women of today are in constant quest to find ways to improve how we look.  We often find ourselves admiring models on media, magazines, advertising campaigns etc. Seeing the pretty and seemingly flawless beauty turn our attention instantly to the product listed below this stunner. Very often, these are adverts for skincare products, makeup, and beauty enhancing procedures.

Photo credit : Hugh Lippe

False beauty in advertising present to us the ‘perfect woman’ image – smooth skin,  with zero wrinkles, perfectly even skin tone, defined sharp jawline etc. We all know such pictures don’t reflect reality. The average women, or even movie stars, do not look like this. Such beauty is ‘created’ by digital enhancement, and yet, more and more women are hoping to achieve these biologically impossible standards. A recent survey has shown that young girls see the pressure of looking good as being the worst part of female!

Should we not embrace the fact that we are bestowed with natural curves and that we are naturally prettier looking than our male counterparts? It becomes like a global obsession that young people of today are starting to be very mindful of how they look even from a very young age. This is not a bad thing, but over-excessive pursuit of beauty can be dangerous. From as simple as piling on layers of makeup to feel more confident about oneself, to turning to diet pills, botox and fillers injections to cosmetic surgery. These are very real issues by plastering the impossible vision of perfection everywhere in our visual society.

The Bare Beauty’s mantra is that every woman can look good, with the right approach to living and beauty. Everyone has the right to feel happy about themselves, regardless of their size, shape or form. We want to look fresh and natural, and that inherently makes one look younger.  


Embrace :

  1. Love yourself – When you actually do, you radiate a natural glow from within. You exude a kind of personal confidence that makes you more ‘you’, and it becomes evident to those around you. People who love themselves are always comfortable with their own self, regardless of how they actually look and dress.
  2. Live healthy – Eating well and resting sufficiently is important, as it gives you health, which is essential to beauty. Just like how our body functions with healthy organs, you shine when your skin benefits from living healthily.
  3. Be happy. – Learn to focus on the positive, start to appreciate the smaller things in life. Inject happiness daily by picking small little tasks to fulfil, and that gives you a sense of joy and satisfaction.
  4. Be appreciative – Work towards appreciating everything around you, even adversity. Every moment has its beauty, play it up. Live in that moment for it only comes once.

Enhance:

  1. Beautify ourselves – Identify our best feature or asset, and bring it on. Enhance them with subtle makeup, clothing or even pairing it with the right attitude. 
  2. Develop our personal wellness balance – A beautiful mind and heart lead to a beautiful soul. Work on finding spiritual peace and kindness.
  3. Improve ourselves – Constant acquisition of knowledge to improve ourselves. It could be focusing on character building, knowledge gaining, interpersonal skills as well as life’s hard skills. As we are open to learning, we will then be able to improve and escalate.
  4. Change our living environment – The surroundings which revolve around us daily will determine what kind of person we are. Stressful environments lead to an imbalance in our health wellness. Improve the quality of our living space will better our physical and mental wellbeing.
  5. Change our mind-set – We are unable to remove all sources causing unhappiness in our lives. The only way will be to change our mind-set and establish the good in every unpleasant situation. Adopting a cheerful and optimistic outlook helps to improve your overall state of mind, enhances your confidence and definitely drive better results in everything you do.
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