September 2018 Roundup

Favourites

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Klairs Soft Airy UV Essence SPF 50+ PA++++ * – Klairs did a great job with this sunscreen; It is comfortable to use on application and finish, doesn’t add a crazy glow, and is not sticky. My boyfriend, who has normal skin, was able to use this alone and he felt comfortably moisturized. Whereas for myself, it was okay at first on its own, but I did notice my dry skin feeling dry (lol). Nonetheless I think it’s great for any skin type!
SUNSCREEN SUNDAY #1: Klairs Soft Airy UV Essence SPF 50+ PA++++

Make Up For Ever Matte Velvet Skin Full Coverage Foundation Y305 Soft Beige – Around this time of year I get into full coverage foundations. I’m still super happy with my It Cosmetics CC Cream (REVIEW: It Cosmetics Your Skin But Better CC Cream SPF 50+ (Medium)), but the beauty junkie in me can’t help but gravitate towards a more polished look. I grabbed this foundation on recommendation from a couple of friends that this would be a great matte foundation for dry skin. Well, they were right! It looks very natural for it’s not a flat matte, buildable coverage, and lasts all day. I’ll give a full review when I have tried wearing it in other ways.

Physician’s Formula Eye Booster Ultra Fine Liquid Eyeliner – It’s been years since I picked up an eye liner from the drugstore, but this one did not disappoint! It has a nice brush tip, is very black, easy to use, and doesn’t smudge! On the packaging it says it’s made in Japan, and I have actually been using Japanese eye liners for years. Highly recommend this product!


Empties

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ByWishtrend Mandelic Acid 5% Skin Prep Water * – I really liked how this acid toner did not leave my skin feeling dry and somehow managed to help control my acne despite it being an AHA! It did sting a bit at times, I’m not sure if I had cuts on my face or what, but I do remember never feeling sensitized at the beginning while using this. If you’re looking for a gentle acid toner, Mandelic Acid is the one to pick and ByWishtrend’s Mandelic Acid 5% Skin Prep Water is a good option to consider.
REVIEW | [ByWishtrend] Mandelic Acid 5% Skin Prep Water

Cerave PM Facial Moisturizing Lotion – Already repurchased my 3rd bottle! This is such a great moisturizer and truthfully peaked my interest in trying out more drugstore skincare.
My Morning (AM) Skincare Routine 2018

Dermalogica PreCleanse Balm * – A more thicker first cleanse product, but I loved that a little went a long way and it took about a year to finish up the entire tube! You’ll definitely get your money’s worth if you have been thinking about getting this. Because it’s heavier, I don’t think any oily-skinned peeps would like this and would probably want to opt for their PreCleanse.
I tried Dermalogica’s Double Cleanse Routine ft. the PreCleanse Balm

Innisfree Super Volcanic Pore Clay Mask – This was my second purchase of this mask, and I’m already missing it. Despite it being a clay mask, I was able to wear this for a long period of time without feeling like my skin completely dried up. My skin always looked even tone and really helped subside the size and pain around any active breakouts. Because of the size, I always had it in my carry-on back in my frequent flyer days, when I tend to get a zit or two after being on the plane for so long. I’m trying to finish up other masks right now, but definitely consider this one if you want an affordable K-Beauty mask!

I’m From Honey Mask  – I definitely had this for too long, for I feel like it lost a bit of its potency since I didn’t use it up when it was near its end. I’m definitely considering repurchasing this, for my face became clearer from breakouts, and my skin felt very moisturized to the touch and smooth.
Review: I’M FROM Honey Mask

Differin – I already cracked open my 2nd tube of this stuff, and I feel like since using it my face looks a tad bit smoother and less breakout prone. I’m not sure if I want to keep using it however, because I want a retinoid or retinol that’ll help with breakouts AND preventative aging. I’ve been noticing the finest of lines on my forehead and around my mouth, so I’ll keep using this until I find something else to tackle additional concerns.
My Nighttime (PM) Skincare Routine 2018

Hada Labo Koi Goku-Jyun Perfect Gel – I miss this one. I got the classic Lotion to try and it really doesn’t do anything for me other than make my face feel a bit more hydrated. The Perfect Gel just really locks in my hydrators and leaves my skin feeling super smooth. Maybe the Premium Lotion would be a better one to look into since it has 5% urea in it.

Mad Hippie Eye Cream – A potent moisturizing, and lightweight eye cream. Ever since I stopped using this and tried to use just my regular moisturizer my under eyes don’t have the same bright, youthful look. I definitely want to repurchase this, but first I’m going to try an eye serum.

Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum – This vitamin C product was very gentle and showed its effectiveness. I don’t think it did too much to help prevent breakouts, but I noticed my post-inflammatory marks didn’t last as long (especially when I used Differin at night). Defintiely recommend if you want to start using a vitamin C serum, I haven’t found other ones that worked for me (even the Ordinary ones!).

Timeless 20% Vitamin C + E + Ferulic Acid Serum – Not completely finished because it oxidized. My boyfriend was using this one and we purchased another bottle for both of us to use. It is definitely more potent than the Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum, but it does have 20% Ascorbic Acid, the big brother of vitamin Cs. Nick’s face has always been good and never problematic like mine, but I do notice his skin looks a tad brighter and tighter from the first bottle. Let’s hope I get similar results!


Hope you enjoyed this month’s roundup! So proud of all the empties for this month.

xo, M


This post contains affiliate links.
DISCLAIMER, PR, AFFILIATES

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SUNSCREEN SUNDAY #1: Klairs Soft Airy UV Essence SPF 50+ PA++++

Back in July, I did Sunscreen Week and reviewed 7 sunscreens. Instead of waiting until I have 7 sunscreens, I thought if I did have one to review, I’ll just review it on Sunday! To kick off this new Sunscreen Sunday Series, I will be starting with Klairs’ new Soft Airy UV Essence SPF 50+ PA++++ *.

If you’re curious about Sunscreen Week, here are the reviews! They all follow the same review format. If there’s something I’m missing in these sunscreen reviews, please let me know!
SUNSCREEN WEEK [Day #1]: Make P:rem UV Defense Me Blue Ray Sun Gel SPF 50+ PA++++
SUNSCREEN WEEK [Day #2]: Elta Md UV Facial Broad-Spectrum SPF 30+ Moisturizing Facial Sunscreen
SUNSCREEN WEEK [Day #3]: Boo Bamboo Natural Sunscreen Mini Spray SPF 30 (Regular and Baby & Kids)
SUNSCREEN WEEK [Day #4]: The Ordinary Mineral UV Filters SPF 30 with Antioxidants
SUNSCREEN WEEK [Day #5]: Cerave AM Facial Moisturizing Lotion SPF 30
SUNSCREEN WEEK [Day #6]: Riversol SPF 30 Lightweight Broad Spectrum Sunscreen
SUNSCREEN WEEK [DAY #7]: La Roche Posay Anthelios Mineral Tinted Ultra-Fluid Lotion SPF 50

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ABOUT:
“The Klairs Soft Airy UV Essence SPF 50 PA++++ is an everyday sun protector for sensitive skin. As is it water-based, it holds a gel-type texture to give a soft weightless and light finish. Also with its high SPF and PA level, it completely guards the skin against UVA, UVB without leaving any greasiness or white cast. The Klairs Freshly Juiced Line is to brighten dull skin with the effect of the vitamin for sensitive skin. Apply Soft Aivy UV Essence after using this line to shield your skin from UV lights and enhance vitamin effects.

Price: $23 USD / ~$30 CAD
Amount: 80 ml / 2.7 fl oz
Protection: UVA/UVB
Strength: SPF 50+ PA++++

UV FILTERS:
Type: Chemical
Uvinul A Plus, Uvinul T 150

INGREDIENTS:
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CONSISTENCY: Light cream.

APPLICATION: Spreads easily and actually feels airy. No stickyness or greasiness as you apply.
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FINISH: Undetectable. It adds a slight moisturized look to the skin but nothing overly glowy.
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FEEL: Light.

STINGS EYES? No, but I prefer using a physical sunscreen around my eyes.

WHITECAST? No.

WATER RESISTANT? No.

SKIN BENEFITS?
Contains Niacinamide, Adenosine, Panthenol, Beta-Glucan, and Sea Buckthorn Oil. I find these ingredients do have purpose and contribute to my skin’s health aside from sun protection. This sunscreen doesn’t sting my face and my skin feels smoother.

UNDER MAKEUP:
It Cosmetics CC Cream glides on easily, and it doesn’t add or subtract anything about the finish.

WHERE TO BUY:
Wishtrend
YesStyle

Klairs Soft Airy UV Essence SPF 50+ PA++++ is a “cosmetically elegant” sunscreen. I’ve tried Klairs’ Mid-Day Blue Sun Lotion in the past and while I liked it, the cast is very noticeable. They finally came out with a chemical sunscreen that doesn’t have a cast, doesn’t sting my face, and feels comfortable on the skin! I also find it a great value; 80ml / 2.7 fl oz for $24-30! I definitely recommend Klairs Soft Airy UV Essence SPF 50+ PA++++ if you’ve been eyeing it.
REVIEW | Klairs Mid-day Blue Sun Lotion SPF40 / PA++

I have other new sunscreens in my collection, so stay tuned for other Sunscreen Sunday reviews!

xo, M


* Sent for review purposes.
This post contains affiliate links.
DISCLAIMER, PR, AFFILIATES

August 2018 Roundup

Basic BG Statement: I CAN’T believe we’re near the end of summer! Seriously, as you get older, time passes so quickly. Anyone else feeling the same way? Anywho, here is August’s roundup!


FAVOURITES

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Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid – I totally get the hype. I like how gentle it is that I can bring it up to my eye area without worry. I’ve repeated this a couple of times to friends, but my face looks very poreless, smooth and “juicy” when I use this product. I want to say the texture is borderline toner to essence. Like an acid essence. It doesn’t dry out my skin at all, and I can wait a few minutes before adding other products.

Riversol SPF 30 Lightweight Broad Spectrum Sunscreen – This has been a very pleasant sunscreen to use. Despite the mica in it to create a natural shimmer, I find it doesn’t blend too shiny or white on my skin. Having said that, I don’t think the tint will 100% adapt to your skin type. Definitely a sunscreen meant for drier skin types, because I do notice it adds an extra layer of moisture on my skin. Until the weather becomes colder and I become a little more lighter, I like using this under my powder foundation.

La Roche Posay Anthelios Mineral Tinted Ultra-Fluid Lotion SPF 50 – It’s a bit pricey for the size, but I love how easy it is to apply without worrying about an obvious cast. This is the the sunscreen I reach for if I don’t want to wear any makeup, but I want some miniscule amount of evenness in my skin. It’s also great to wear at the gym!

I did a Sunscreen Week on my blog back in July, where I go more in depth about these sunscreens!
SUNSCREEN WEEK [Day #6]: Riversol SPF 30 Lightweight Broad Spectrum Sunscreen
SUNSCREEN WEEK [DAY #7]: La Roche Posay Anthelios Mineral Tinted Ultra-Fluid Lotion SPF 50

Featured CBB Blog of the Month – I am part of a group called the Canadian Beauty Bloggers Network, and I was featured as August’s Blog of the Month! Around this time I’ve been blogging for just about 3 years, and have 100+ blog posts. I love being part of this community of bloggers who are so supportive, helpful and encouraging!
My featured blog post – August 2018 Blog of the Month: MICHXMASH


EMPTIES

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SKINCARE

Consonant DHE Mask – This mask was REALLY good at cutting down the size and pain of very active zits! I mostly used this as a spot treatment, but occassionally all over the face. My skin didn’t feel dry from the clay, and it was fairly soft after washing the mask off. If you want a mask that doubles as a spot treatment, this is your go-to!
REVIEW: Consonant “One For All” Kit

COSRX Galactomyces 95 Whitening Power (Tone Balancing) Essence – I noticed such a difference in my skin the moment I incorporated this product into my routine! I stopped complaining about tightness in my skin, and my face felt smoother in texture. I was skeptical about essences, let alone Galactomyces Ferment Filtrate, but this essence performed really well. I bought the Secret Key essence instead of repurchasing this one however because I *did* give in to the nice packaging of it! Out of the two however, I prefer the texture of the COSRX one!
I’m Finally Sharing my Current Skincare Routines 2018

Too Cool For School Xakziuza Cleansing Water – Better than their Eye & Makeup Remover Counterpart. My face didn’t tingle, which normally happens when I use a product with micelles in it. I won’t repurchase because this also has a strong scent and I’m trying out Riversol’s Micellar Water at the moment.

Make P:rem UV Defense ME Blue Ray Sun Gel SPF 50+ PA++++ – Not completely empty, but I can’t get the rest of the product out! Argh! >_< Either way, this is a great chemical sunscreen. My face always looked even, also during days if I was outside in the sun all day. I also did a dedicated review on this sunscreen if you want more details!
SUNSCREEN WEEK [Day #1]: Make P:rem UV Defense Me Blue Ray Sun Gel SPF 50+ PA++++

Paula’s Choice Clinical Ultra-Rich Moisturizer – This was okay. When I first started using this, I felt like it was actually DRYING out my skin, and made the center of my face very discoloured. Now that the weather is a bit better and I have a different approach to my skincare routine, it’s doesn’t seem to do that anymore. I’m not saying this moisturizer is bad, I just think I’ve tried better moisturizers.
REVIEW: Paula’s Choice Moisturizers for Dry Skin

HAIR

Aveda Clove Color Conditioner – Already bought another one! Aveda has been my go-to since I discovered it for treating my coloured hair, and I can’t find anything else that’s easier and effective to use. Clove is what I use to keep the darkness of the ash brown in my hair. It’s been almost a month since I ran out of it, and I can tell my hair’s been getting lighter faster.
MICHXMASH & Vera Rapunzel’s Haircare Faves 2017

North American Hemp Co. Area 369 Hair Serum – I finally ran out of this guy! I really enjoyed this hair serum and my hair felt soft and detangled almost instantly. I would still have to apply this on a daily basis to make sure my ends were not feeling frayed. I just hate the packaging, What’s the point of it having a cap like this if the bottle doesn’t even let you squeeze!?

SAMPLES

Paula’s Choice Gentle Cleansing Cloths – Impressed how nicely saturated it was and GENTLE around my eyes! I’m not a makeup remover wipe kinda gal, but I definitely see the appeal of this one and would consider adding it into my cart the next time I buy PC products. I usually use wipes when I swatched a lot on my hands for a post/video!

Paula’s Choice Resist Super Antioxidant Concentrate Serum – I can’t even recall anything special about this other than the texture was cool. Sure, it has a nice list of ingredients, but I already use a vitamin C serum, and I like my Cerave PM Moisturizing Facial Lotion for my ceramides.


And that’s that for last month’s roundup!

Hope you enjoyed the read.

xo,

M

REVIEW + GIVEAWAY [CLOSED]: Some By Mi Products! (AHA/BHA/PHA 30 Days Miracle Toner & Cleansing Bar, H7 Hydromax Cream)

Seriously, how many of us saw this product and the before/afters circulate our social media feeds? Some By Mi reached out to me to try their very popular AHA/BHA/PHA 30 Days Miracle Toner as well as their Cleansing Bar and H7 Hydromax Cream.

Some By Mi (meaning: Attracted to Beauty) is a popular natural cosmetic Korean Brand that’s all about “Miracle of my skin with good ingredients” (this is their slogan translated to English). 400 thousand of their products sold out within 3 months, and from that popular before/after photo circulating around, their products seem especially catered to those with acne-prone skin.

For this review, I will be more detailed about the 30 Day Miracle Toner because it’s the only information I received in English from the brand. I will do my best to review the other products in this post.

And yes, as the title suggests, there will be a giveaway of all 3 products! Be sure to check out the details at the end of this post. Let’s get on to the review!


About the Brand

Some By Mi means “Attracted by Beauty”
Slogan is “Miracle of my skin with good ingredients”
Popular natural Korean Cosmetic Brand
400 thousand products sold out in 3 months
Products catered mostly to those with acne-prone skin
From what I’ve seen on e-retailers, these products are always on sale at a reduced cost / some type of deal


AHA/BHA/PHA 30 Days Miracle Toner

Some By Mi #2.00_03_11_17.Still005

CLAIMS / QUICK FACTS:

  • 150ml, 32, 000 won
  • Skin Cell Control
  • Exfoliating
  • Acne Control
  • Smooth Skin
  • Skin Cell and Body Waste Removal
  • Moisturizing
  • Pore Control
  • Improvement of Complexion
  • Passed the Hypo-Allergenic Test – I don’t know what this test is
  • Without 20  Stimulating Ingredients – meaning 20 ingredients that could cause a negative reaction
  • Sebum-Control
  • Blackhead Control
  • pH 5.5
  • Ingredients based on EWG Safety Ratings

Ingredient Highlights

Note: The ingredients listed is provided to me by Some By Mi. It doesn’t reflect the entire ingredient list, just the main ones.

AHA (Citric Acid): 500ppm = 0.05%
– Derived from citrus fruits
– Usually used as a pH adjuster
– Larger molecule than Glycolic Acid
– Not as studied as Glycolic or Lactic Acid
– If in higher % could exfoliate the skin and act as water-binding agent

BHA (Salicylic Acid): 100ppm = 0.01%
– Exfoliates the pore lining, making it very suitable for acne-prone skin
– Also has soothing properties

PHA Lactobionic Acid: 100ppm = 0.01%
– Supposed to be as effective as AHAs
– Larger molecular structure; Doesn’t penetrate the skin as quickly
– Less sensitizing

Tea Tree Water: 10, 000ppm = 1%
– Tea Tree Oil is skin-soothing
– Some By Mi explains that it helps soothe skin, relieve inflammation and disinfect skin (antibacterial properties)

Niacinamide: 2%
I love this ingredient, it’s multipurpose for your skin’s health
– Improves barrier function
– Controls oil production
– Minimizes pores and fine lines
– Brightening

Other Notables (stated by Some By Mi)
Adenosine: Anti-wrinkle
P-Refynil: Sebum Control
Fructan: Deep Hydration

Usage:
I removed my acne treatments – BHA wash, BP wash, Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum, Differin
Applied toner morning and night for 14 days (I only used it for this much because at the time of testing this, I was at the 2 month mark for Differin. It’s recommended to use Differin for 3 months to see its results, so it was very risking removing it from my skincare routine).
I’m Finally Sharing my Current Skincare Routines 2018

Scent: It has a noticeable smell of mint, but it doesn’t overwhelm my senses and last. After using Google Translate, Peppermint Oil appears as the last ingredient.

Texture: Very watery. To compare, Klairs Supple Preparation Unscented Toner is more viscous.

Application:  As recommended by Some By Mi, use a cotton pad and wipe upwards. I applied about 4 douses each time. For my bad breakout areas I let the cotton pad sit for a bit on that area for maybe 30 seconds to get extra treatment.

Finish: None. It sinks into the skin pretty quickly and I don’t find this has any softening effect like Klairs.

Immediate Results: Overnight any active pimples including cysts decreased in size. Imparted a brightening effect after use, making the skin look slightly even.

Long-Term Results: Inflammation around spots subsided, decreased the size and lowered the risk of long-lasting hyperpigmentation.

Final Thoughts: Stunned. I wasn’t expecting this to work as well as it did around my acne. I wouldn’t consider this an acid toner however; The pH is 5.5 and the percentage of acids are too low to show significant exfoliating results. Overall this is perfect as a pH balanced toner with good skin ingredients that any one using would find beneficial. It could prevent future breakouts to an extent, but there’s a lot of factors that contribute to a breakout 🙂


AHA/BHA/PHA 30 Days Miracle Cleansing Bar

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Note: The ingredients I’m about to list below is based on me using Google Translate’s app and highlighting the text area. This is NOT the official list and I can’t 100% guarantee the translation was correct.

Ingredient Highlights
Chlorella Powder: Antioxdiant, Emollient
Tea Tree Extract: Skin-Conditioning
Licorice Extract: Skin-soothing
Moisturizing: Olive Oil, Argan Oil, Green Tea Seed Oil

While using the GT app I didn’t seen any acids in the list…

Usage:
Used occasionally morning and night
Swapped it as either sole morning / post-workout cleanser, or second cleanse in my nighttime routine.

Scent: I don’t know how to explain this other than it smells like a natural soap. It’s not strong at all.

Texture: Not as stiff as a generic soap bar (let’s say Dove). Once lathered, the foam feels very soft on the skin.

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When I lathered more than necessary the first time lol

Application: Used with the foaming net and lathered it lightly between my hands. It produces a lot foaming lather really quickly, definitely better than using it without. Would wash my face with it for around a minute, including eye area.

Final Thoughts: My skin didn’t feel irritated at all while using this soap. I’m not a fan of using cleansing bars but this is definitely not a conventional one. I like the extra bit of moisture it provides and it’s overall very simple and gentle. This could wash off sunscreen, but I rely more on my cleansers with surfactants to do a better job with makeup removal.


H7 Hydromax Cream

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Ingredient Highlights

Note: The ingredients I’m about to list below is based on me using Google Translate’s app and highlighting the text area. This is NOT the official list and I can’t 100% guarantee the translation was correct.

Ulleung Sea Water – 71%
Glycerin
Niacinamide
Various oils: Avocado, Jojoba Seed, Palm Oil,
Various plant extracts: Green Tea, Yam Root, Okra Fruit, Kelp, Lotus Root, Licorice, Chamomile Flower
7 types of Hyaluronic Acid: Sodium Hyaluronate, Hydrolized Hyaluronic Acid, Sodium Acetylated Hyaluronate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Hyaluronic Acid (I can’t find the other 2)

Usage:
Used occasionally morning and night
Swapped with Hada Labo Perfect Gel as humectant moisturizer.

Texture: Light cream.

Scent: A noticeable smell of lemon as you apply it. Lemon Peel Oil translated at very end of IL. It does not last.

Application: Used nickel-sized amount and dotted it all over my face and neck. Spreads nicely and doesn’t irritate my eye area.

Finish: Slight tacky finish that leaves my skin feeling soft and smooth. Lighter than my Hada Labo Perfect Gel.

Final Thoughts: It’s a nice moisturizer more suitable for normal to oily skin types if you want to use it on its own. It performed nicely as a humectant moisturizer before going in with my occlusive one, but I love the Hada Labo Perfect Gel more.


Final Feels

Usually when it comes to hyped up products, I am super critical. However I have to say Some By Mi products took me by surprise and their AHA/BHA/PHA 30 Day Miracle Toner gave me great results. I’d say the couple of issues with them are 1) Google Translate struggle was real and I hope Some By Mi eventually adds an English description and ingredients list to each of their products 2) Up the acids in their claimed acid products (but I guess that would rid it of its gentleness).

I think anyone can try this line, for all the products are really easy to incorporate in your existing routine and only provides skin benefits. But if I were to really pinpoint who these were meant for based on just these 3 products, definitely for the teens starting out in skincare that need a simple routine with gentle but effective products.

Speaking of trying…

GIVEAWAY TIME!

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One winner will receive full size products of all the ones I just reviewed!
You’ll be receiving full-sized products of:
AHA/BHA/PHA 30 Day Miracle Toner
AHA/BHA/PHA 30 Day Miracle Cleansing Bar
H7 Hydromax Cream
There are many ways to enter and increase your chance of winning! Just be sure to provide the necessary information in the link down below.

SOME BY MI GIVEAWAY [CLOSED]

UPDATE 09/03/18: Giveaway is closed. Thanks for participating!

Terms of the Giveaway:
August 25th – September 2nd
International
Must be 18 years or older
No giveaway accounts
Winner will have 24 hours to reply
MICHXMASH and SOME BY MI are not responsible for customs fees or lost items.

Thank you Some By Mi for the opportunity to try your products, and giving the opportunity for someone else to as well!

Good luck everyone!

xo, M


This post is unsponsored. Products were just sent complimentary for review purposes.
This post contains affiliate links.
DISCLAIMER, PR, AFFILIATES

My Nighttime (PM) Skincare Routine 2018

Please read my “skincare announcement” monologue before reading this post!
I’m Finally Sharing my Current Skincare Routines 2018

Breakdown
1. Makeup Removal / Double Cleanse
2. Acne Treatment
3. Hydrators
4. Double Moisturize
5. Main Active


1. MAKEUP REMOVAL / DOUBLE CLEANSE

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Double Cleansing is a MUST in my nighttime routine. I first noticed skin improvements from this step alone, especially since I used to wear a cake-ton of makeup back in my early 20s.

I’m surprised with the Marcelle Gentle Make-Up Remover for Sensitive Eyes. Gentle really is all-encompassing with this. Just a quick shake and a squirt on a cotton round removes the most waterproof Japanese mascara I own with one cotton pad, doesn’t make my eyesight blurry, doesn’t leave a residue, or feel like anything for that matter after I use it.

At the top of the list, the eye makeup remover contains a few solvent-emollient ingredients such as Isododecane, Isohexadecane, Isopropyl Palmitate – ingredients that help dissolve makeup without stripping the eye area’s sensitive skin.

This eye makeup remover has been highly recommended by a few Canadian Bloggers, and I see why they love it and go back to it. It doesn’t add or subtract from my skincare (aside from makeup), so there’s really not much to it. It just works!

After I remove my eye makeup, I start off with my first 1st Cleanse using the Dermalogica PreCleanse Balm *. I only need a pea-sized amount to cover my entire face. Despite it’s thick consistency, it spreads easily and gently emulsifies after wetting your fingers.

The main oils in this product are Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil, Apricot Kernel Oil, and Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil – definitely explains it’s thicker consistency and why my face feels so soft after I rinse it off! I can see why Dermalogica advertises it as a makeup remover for drier skin types.

Even with such nourishing oils, my skin doesn’t feel like it has any residue after I wash the rest of the balm off. It also comes with a silicone mitt which is REALLY nice to use with the PreCleanse Balm, but I’ve opted for my fingers to be as gentle as possible because of the actives I use in this routine.

For the 2nd cleanse, I also use a pea-size amount of the Dermalogica Special Cleansing Gel * .

It contains Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Disodium Lauroamphodiacetate, Sodium Trideceth Sulfate, and Quillaja Saponaria Bark Extract –  surfactants and foaming agents that effectively clean skin. The foam that is actually creates is so small, and my skin feels like it’s softening as I continuously massage the Special Cleansing gel into my skin.

This is probably my favourite step in my entire nighttime routine. It’s gentle to use, my skin feels softer as I use it, and I notice my skin looking slightly brighter. Even when my sister used it, she liked it so much she bought the big bottle of it! The one downside would be that if you take too long to apply your other skincare products, your skin will definitely feel a tad dry. But this is avoided easily by following suit with my skincare products while my skin is slightly damp. I’m actually on the fence of whether or not to continue with Cerave’s Hydrating Cleanser once I’m done with Dermalogica’s Special Cleansing Gel, because I really like this cleanser too!
I tried Dermalogica’s Double Cleanse Routine ft. the PreCleanse Balm


2. ACNE TREATMENT

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Nighttime is the best time to go in with a stronger acne treatment, that way whatever irritation or redness I get will only be at night.

Benzagel 5 Acne Wash is probably the best Benzoyl Peroxide product I have tried. The ingredients are no nonsense and you only need a small amount to effectively treat your face.

As the name suggests, it has 5% Benzoyl Peroxide, a very effective ingredient at killing acne bacteria quickly, and doesn’t pose the problem of bacterial resistance with continued use. I opted for the wash form that Benzagel offers because washes tend to be gentler than treatments, but just as effective if you use it long enough.

I use about a nickely to quarter-size amount and make sure I properly massage it evenly on my entire face, concentrating on my breakout prone areas. I do this for a couple of minutes until I rinse it off. I’m surprised for a small bottle it is still going! If I use it for too long I do notice my face becomes slightly drier, but most definitely nothing as severe as what I experienced in the past.

After doing this step for just over a month, I reintroduced acid toning into my routine, alternating with the wash. Since I am using Differin, I didn’t know what to expect in terms of irritation, so I stopped using my ByWishtrend Mandelic Acid 5% Skin Prep Water * until I felt confident enough to incorporate it back into my routine. I can’t do without an acid toner because nothing works faster when it comes to smoothing out the texture on my skin.

As the name suggests, it contains 5% Mandelic Acid, the largest molecule and considerably gentler acid in the AHA family. It also helps with breakouts because Mandelic Acid is supposedly slightly lipid-permeable (don’t quote me on this).

Although I haven’t experienced heavy sensitization to my skin, I do notice that my skin is slightly more sensitive to this acid toner than it was prior to Differin. (Note: I stopped using this toner because I have been testing out a hyped up one that I will be reviewing soon. I’ll finish up this one once I’m done the testing period.)
REVIEW | [ByWishtrend] Mandelic Acid 5% Skin Prep Water


3. HYDRATORS

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This step is the same as my morning routine! I’ll just be linking my morning routine here so I don’t repeat myself. This step is just as essential at night as it is morning, so I’m happy the products come in decent sizes at fairly affordable prices.


4. MOISTURIZE

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Again, very similar to my morning. While my face is still tacky, I go in with Hada Labo’s Perfect Gel, following with Mad Hippie’s Eye Cream. But to seal everything in, I follow up with a heavier moisturizer like the Cerave Moisturizing Cream.

I would typically finish off my nighttime skincare with an oil, but because I am using a retinoid, I opt for a heavier moisturizer to counteract the dryness from it. So far, it’s been working! Of course, Cerave’s Moisturizing Cream contains Ceramides, helping to moisturize and assist with my skin’s barrier function. It also contains petrolatum making it slightly more occlusive.

Despite how much thicker it is, this has never caused congestion! My boyfriend even uses it as his daily moisturizer. A bonus is you get a big tub of it and you don’t need a lot for it to work.


5. MAIN ACTIVE

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I’m glad I moisturize my skin well beforehand, because I do get quite dry with Differin. So far I have been using it for over a month and I can say I have seen some results. I have stopped using an exfoliating toner to make sure before I brought it back into my routine!

Differin contains 0.1% Adapalene, a retinoid specifically targeted for the treatment and prevention of acne. It is supposed to be more tolerant than its big brother, Tretinoin.

Although I apply this on top of my moisturizer, I find it still has shown results in the month or more that I’ve been using it. I have not gotten a huge cyst from the Crimson Wave (unless I really don’t maintain consistency), my skin looks smoother even without layers of hydrating product, and my hyperpigmentation is lightening up on my cheeks and under my jaw. I tried using it before my hydration step, and I just find my skin looks more red, gets dry really fast, and I don’t feel as satisfied with my skincare. I’m going to continue using Differin as the last step in my routine, and keeping Vitamin A as a constant active in my nighttime routine in general after I run out of Differin.


This nighttime routine has been working great for me, and I am so happy I’ve been seeing results. Paired with my morning routine, I can’t remember the last time or if I EVER felt so content with my skincare routine, enjoyed everything about it, AND saw results.

I really hoped my routines helped you out!

Be sure to check out my AM Routine: My Morning (AM) Skincare Routine 2018

xo, M

If you want to see the texture of the products and in action:


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