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I love „The little mermaid“ by Hans Christian Andersen. My parents had to read it to me countless times, even though I´d always end up in tears.
Mind you, although it is what inspired Disneys „Arielle“, the original story only bares slight resemblance to that movie. It is much darker, full of death and blood and loss.
Ah, you´ve got to love the old stories, told to prepare children for the cruel and dangerous world they were facing!
The little mermaid never gains the love of the prince, nor does she get an immortal soul or a functional human body. Though trying, mute and in constant pain, to win his love, the prince marries another woman. When offered the opportunity to kill him (and his bride) to at least regain her mermaid self, she decides to die instead, turning into sea foam and becoming a daughter of the air.
Wouldn´t count as a happy end, don´t you think? Seeing the story as a transformation, innocence first, then the catastrophy and in the end your changed self, formed by what you experienced, is what made me think of it right now.
Why? Because the Oskia Renaissance Cleansing Gel goes through three different stages as well. Without the loss, pain and blood though, promised!
This blog post contains affiliate links and *PR-Samples. Please read disclaimer.
I promise this is the last time you need to sit with me through sound issues.
See, in an attempt to be the most efficient I could be I bulk filmed a few videos. It was only when I got down to editing, quite some time later, that I realized the sound was completely messed up.
In all four videos. And as per usual I was so late with editing, I simply couldn’t refilm them! Or, in case of this September Empties video, I had thrown out all the stuff already.
Ah, now you know my dirty secret: I actually filmed my September Empties back in July! What can I say, I need content like that for when I am too busy holidaying in France (and probably shopping for skincare) to create something new.
After talking about acid toning in general, my holy grail product (click here) and my recommendation for AHA-newbies (click here), the time has come to introduce you to an alternative which is effective, budget friendly and easy to travel with.
„Easy to travel with“ might not be the first thing you look for in a beauty product, but if you are a skincare hoarder lover like yours truly, you will come to the conclusion that with traveling sometimes less is more when it comes to heavy (and sophisticated) glass bottle packaging.
If you read Acid Toning Week Part 1 (if you haven’t, click here), you already know, my first acid toner was Alpha H Liquid Gold.
I saw results within two weeks, and I had tasted blood.
The queen of skincare, Caroline Hirons, recommends acid toning twice daily (of course depending on your skin type and concerns), and as much as I wanted to, I quickly figured out that using Alpha H twice daily would not only leave me broke, but would cause my skin to peel in a very unpleasant way.
So on the hunt I went for a more gentle version. And I found the aptly named „Clarins Doux Exfoliant“, or „Gentle Exfoliant Brightening Toner“ for those unfamiliar with french.
Acid Toning Week – sounds fancy.
Like a proper blog theme week. But let´s not get overexcited, shall we?
In fact, I just wanted to write about my experiences after introducing acids into my skincare routine about two years ago, and as I have three different on rotation at the moment, I figured, it would just last me a week.
To put it out there: I had never even heard about acid toning until 2012. Shocking, I know.
Of course, Salicylic and Lactic Acid were no strangers to me, but even though they would make their appearance during my workday, the thought of using them on my skin never occurred to me.
I suffer from breakouts and hyper pigmentation, as I seem to mention in every other blogpost, and one day while aimlessly clicking away as you do, I stumbled upon a blogpost on A model recommends (still one of my favorite blogs) talking about Alpha H Liquid Gold with Glycolactic Acid and how it helped with even that. I was tempted, but as it is quite on the pricey side, I hesitated and forgot.
Discovering Caroline Hirons (the queen of skincare) closely after, I browsed her „Cheat Sheets“, and there they were again: Acids. Mentioned both in Acne and in Anti-Ageing, they sounded to good to be true.
And so I took the leap of faith and invested in some Alpha H Liquid Gold.
While my mornings are all about an efficient, streamlined routine (if you fancy taking a look, click here), in the evenings I really like to take my time. Being a new mum with Mr Loca working crazy hours, this tends to be the me-time I get on an average day and I try to make the most of it.
Not in order of appliance (is that even a word?)
Wearing SPF and make-up on a (almost) daily base, I make sure to give my skin a proper cleanse. No matter how late it is and how tired I am, I just can´t just go to sleep without that. The thought of the days grime clogging my pores, feeding the bacteria and causing wrinkles and zits leaves me so itchy, it makes me get
up at 3 am, after I fell asleep on the couch trying to read and get on with my full on routine.
I just wish, I had that discipline considering exercise.
Back in the day, I was all about foaming cleansers. I longed for the squeaky clean feeling they can give you, and if anyone would have told me that the oils on my face were actually important for my skins balance, fighting the signs of aging and protecting it against bacteria I would not have believed it.
Looking back, it seems very eighties: Effective, strong, uncompromising.
But this is 2014, and my preference has changed. Not only am I no longer wearing neon triangle earrings (I know they are back fashion wise, I just choose to ignore it), but I have also gotten into balm and (heaven forbid) oil cleansers!
Having suffered from acne for a long time, taking care of my skin became second nature.
I have come a long way, starting with regular visits to the
dermatologist at the age of twelve (definitely a must if you suffer from acne), going through a phase of experimenting on my own (absolutely NOT recommended) and lastly turning to the world-wide-web looking for answers (Caroline Hirons, I am looking at you).
During these years, 23 to be exact, I picked up a fair share of knowledge. While being a physician myself has added some useful background information, I am by no means a skincare expert.
This is just what I find works for me.
Let´s call it work in progress.
In order of appearance… Lip balm missing in action
In the morning, I will remove night time sweat and the product residue from the evening before with a quick cleanse-and-flannel, using Sunday Riley Ceramic Slip Cleanser (Review).
It is described as slightly foaming, but I don´t find it to be foaming at all.
Cleansing my face (and neck, but for lengths sake let´s stick to face) twice a day has made a huge difference in my skins appearance.
I take it off with a washcloth and warm water and move on to toner.
At the moment, I use La Roche Posay Serozinc, (Review) which I buy in bulk when I am in France, as it is not sold in Germany. If you are reading this, La Roche Posay (Ha! I wish!), fix this please! It really calms down my redness and helps control the oil during
My current serum is by Weleda (Pomegranate Firming Serum). Award-winning and completely organic, but available in drugstores and budget-friendly, I really tried to like it.
But I just don´t.
It feels drying, I´m not keen on the smell and the number one ingredient is alcohol, something I didn´t notice
right from the start, because I didn´t read the ingredient list. (Serves me right. The only reason I am going to use it up.)
During summertime, La Roche Posay Effaclar Duo is used as moisturizer. Despite the fact that it is meant to be a treatment for problematic areas, I find it to be moisturizing enough to use all over. Maybe I have to accept, that my whole face
is a problematic area? Like, just face it? (Sorry, bad one…)
Wearing SPF is really important to me, partly because I am fair-skinned and burn easily, but also because I use exfoliating acids on a regular basis, which leaves my skin sensitive to sun damage.
If it is cloudy, if I am only going to be outside to run some errands and maybe go for a little walk, I usually get my SPF from my foundation or tinted moisturizer. I go for SPF 25 at least, as you seldom reach the number on the bottle, because you just sheer it out too much. Or do you really use a teaspoon of foundation for your face?
If I will be spending quite some time outside, I go for 50, even on cloudy days. EucerinSun Fluid 50+ (Review) is my current favourite, as it is mattyfing, oil-free and works awesome as a face primer.
For the rare occasion I stay indoors all day, I skip SPF. Should be self-explanatory.
So this is it:
Cleanse – Tone – Serum – Moisturize – SPF.
Can be done within 7 minutes, carrying a baby on your hip.
Featured in the last installment of New In (read here), Garnier BB Cream Miracle Skin Perfector for oily and combination skin was what I wore on my face the last weeks to give you a thorough review.
Garnier BB Cream Miracle Skin Perfector in light
Daylight, not blended.
Here is what Garnier claims:
„Our oil-free BB cream blurs pores and imperfections, evens skin tones and boosts your natural glow. Contains SPF 20 for UV protection, ultra absorbent perlite + mineral pigments. Non-comedogenic, oil-free.
Immediate results: Gives a radiant matte finish. Pores appear less visible, imperfections appear minimized.
Results after 4 weeks: Skin looks less oily, pore appearance is minimized, imperfections appear visibly reduced, skin radiance is improved.“
It is 9,99 for 40 ml at Boots and there are two shades available: Light and Medium.
I got shade light, and as with most drugstore bases, truly fair skinned girls will find this way to dark. For your reference, I got matched NC 20 at MAC last winter, and can pull it off due to my summer tan. It oxidizes al little on me, getting a warmer and a tad darker within the first couple of minutes.
It is fragranced and I notice a plastic smell when I apply it that disappears quickly.
The formula is quite runny, which leads to the first and most annoying thing I noticed about the packaging: It leaks.
When first opening it and turning the tube upside down the product just started dripping into my sink. When you close it, even when you screw the lid on really tight, you will end up with the product all over the place.
On a positive note, the formula is really lightweight, as you would expect after it just leaks out of the tube, and sits on the skin really nicely. I apply it with my fingers (as they are already messy from opening the tube *sigh*) and it sets within a few minutes, leaving me without a sticky or silicony feeling. It is one of the bases you almost forget you are wearing.
Although it is this lightweight, the coverage is quite impressive for a BB cream. One application leads to a medium coverage, easily buildable by applying another layer where needed. Of course, you will never get red carpet proof full coverage, but if you were to go to the red carpet, you would probably choose a different base anyway.
The „radiant matte finish“ Garnier claims is actually quite nice. Definitely matte, but not flat, it keeps your skin looking natural. If you are really oily though, you will have to set it with powder or blot throughout the day, as I tend to do in my T-Zone.
Enough blabbing, on to the pictures:
No foundation, concealer (except for the under-eye area), powder, blush
One layer of BB Cream, second layer on problem areas, no concealer, no powder, no blush
As Garnier makes no claims concerning the staying power, I did not have high hopes. And rightly so: After looking into the mirror (or in this case, camera lens) after 4 hours of running errands and carrying around the Little Bean, I discovered it was mostly gone.
After 4 hours, no touch-up, no concealer, no powder, no blush
It tends to last 2-3 hours on me, disappearing nicely. No creasing, no settling into my fine (*cough*) lines, no patchiness.
So what about the claims
As far as the immediate results go, I agree. I like the finish, it does a good job at covering imperfections and doesn’t emphasize my pores.
And the long-term benefits?
Nope. I have been using it for about 4 weeks and my skin looks pretty much the same. But to be honest, the only active ingredient you get (apart from moisturizers) is sun screen, so I had not expected it to live up to these.
Will I repurchase?
Hm, let´s see.
I really like the texture, the coverage and the finish.
Also, I think you get good value for your money.
But the color is too dark for me come winter.
The staying power is just too short, as I can not be bothered with touch-ups during the day.
And, to be honest, the leaking drives me nuts. Whenever I use it, it gets all over the place.
The answer is no.