Friday, January 6, 2012

A departure from books for...BEAUTY!

I'd say somewhere in my mid 20's I started thinking about my face and wrinkles and age/sun spots. I had gotten past my pimple stage and now it was time to grow up and think about the future of my face. I started using moisturizer with sunscreen daily. That was about it until this past year.

Last year, I discovered an article (click here to read it) about the benefits of Retin-A for your skin other than for acne. Apparently Retin-A, which is vitamin A derivative, is better than nearly anything you can buy over the counter. Perhaps that's the hitch for a lot of potential consumers, you have to have a prescription for it. I had a fantastic doctor  last year before I moved and simply asked him if I could get a prescription of Retin-A "for my skin". I didn't mention either pimples or wrinkles. He gladly wrote the prescription and I gladly accepted!

I do not use the Retin-A in the summer, as it makes your skin very susceptible to sun burns, so in the past 14 months, I'd say I've only used it for a total of 5 months. I've been using it regularly now for about  two months. The key to using Retin-A is to take it slowly. It can be extremely irritating to skin if used everyday right off the get-go. I started using it once a week, built up to twice a week and now I use it every other day. I do have the skin flaking/peeling that many people experience in the beginning. This does go away once your skin gets used to the product. Think of it as the old tired skin sloughing off revealing the beautiful skin underneath. Anyway this is where I discovered my new favorite skin regimen for exfoliating.

The same author of the article I mentioned above wrote about homemade body scrubs a.k.a. exfoliation scrubs. I combined 1 Tbs of Almond Oil, 2 Tbs of regular ole' sugar and 2 drops of Tea Tree Oil (my own idea). I mixed it together and lightly scrubbed it into my face before bed and rinsed. Oh. My. Gosh. Sure it started out a little red as I crawled into bed but the next day, I swear I was glowing. My skin had that beautiful dewy look and it felt like a freshly lotioned baby's bottom! Heaven!!!

I'm pleased that I don't have to buy ridiculously high priced products that may or may not work. And what's funny, if you tell any esthetician or makeup counter lady about your Retin-A usage, they'll tell you it's so rough on your skin...what? Do you think they'd tell you it's a great beauty secret while they're trying to sell you $150 worth of lotion, potions and creams? Nope!

And for a body scrub: 1/4 cup Almond Oil, 1/2 cup Epsom salt or Sea salt (not table salt) and an essential oil of your choice. I used about 12 drops of grapefruit oil and some fresh orange zest. Fantastic! Do it in the shower before you get wet. When you're done rinsing, be sure to wipe it up or it gets super slippery.

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