Choosing the Best Moisturizer – A Handy Guide

What’s the Best Moisturizer?

The beauty experts agree: moisturizing is the most important part of your beauty routine. That makes picking one the most important choice you have in your beauty routine. So, which is the best moisturizer? The truth is, there is no such thing as “one size fits all.” You have to take stock of your skin concerns to find what’s right for you.

Shop for Your Skin Type

Like cleansers, different moisturizing products are better suited for different skin types. Go beyond the recommendations on the bottles and learn what kind of moisturizer your skin needs.If you have…

Normal skin:  rejoice in how lucky you are. Look for lightweight formulations that keep skin pH balanced.
Dry skin: choose thicker, hydrating formulations that soak in without leaving greasy residue. Look for ingredients like ceramides and fatty acids, but steer clear of all sulfates.
Oily skin: yes, you still need to moisturize.  Choose lightweight formulas or a gel. If you have excessive oil, use a serum as well. Always choose oil-free and water-based formulas.
Combination skin: your best bet may be to use different products on different areas. Avoid oil-based formulas unless it’s lightweight, such as rose hip or jojoba. Look for products that soak in quickly but moisturize deeply.
Sensitive skin: follow the above recommendations, but be wary about ingredients. Some “sensitive skin” formulas still include irritants.  Avoid sulfates, SD alcohol, fragrance and propylene glycol at all costs.  Choose all-natural when you can.

Identify Your Concerns

Once you know the base formula type you need, narrow down your options by your individual needs. Pick the best moisturizer for your biggest concern.
Do you have…
Acne-prone skin?
Anti-aging concerns?
Dark spots?
Loss of firmness?
Large pores?
Uneven skin tone?
Uneven skin texture?

Seasonal and Monthly Changes

Most people find that their skin changes with the seasons.  If your skin flakes in the winter, you need a heavier moisturizer or to apply more often. Summer demands a higher SPF. Some ladies also find that their skin type changes with their hormone cycle. Use different moisturizers to suit those changes.When it comes down to it, the only way to find the best moisturizer for you is to try them out. Do not be afraid to try new things even if you have a product that works well. Keep trying until you find the perfect match. Your skin will love you for it.
Finding a Moisturizer for Oily Skin
When it comes to finding the best moisturizer for oily skin it can be a little tricky. Many moisturizers will only add to the oil on your skin or clog your pores, leaving you feeling like you need to go take a shower rather than clean and refreshed. But not all moisturizers are created equal, and we’re here to help you find one that will work for you! Here are some tips that will help you find the best moisturizer for oily skin.

Look For An Oil Free Moisturizer
This might seem like an obvious tip, but it’s one that very few people actively do. They’ll look for other keywords that products contain such as, “light” or “smooth,” without taking into account that getting that light or smooth feeling often involves oils.

Avoid SPF Containing Moisturizer
Nothing clogs pores quicker than sunscreen. While wearing sunscreen and protecting your skin from UV rays is an important step in your overall health, you should be aware that adding SPF to a moisturizer will increase the thickness and the chances that your pores will be clogged from using it.

Look For Moisturizers Containing Natural Ingredients
The more natural the ingredients in your moisturizer are, the more likely they are to work with your skin! If you look for something with a green tea extract or something along those lines, it is likely to have a gentler way of breaking down oils and moving past them to moisturize your skin. It’s also much less likely to damage your skin, because of the gentler way it works.

Look For Non-Comedogenic Moisturizers
While this tip is more commonly given to someone trying to avoid acne while they moisturize, it is usually one that works for oily skin as well. One major cause of acne is built-up oil and dirt in the pores, and these types of moisturizer work directly against those two things. By targeting the cause of acne, these types of moisturizers can also help reduce oiliness of skin.

As with any skin care product, what works for one person might not work for the next. You might need to shop around and try a couple different products before you find the one that’s best for you. But with these four simple steps, you are well on your way to finding the best moisturizer for oily skin, and finding the one that will work for you!

Hair Care Advice for Fine Hair

Did you know that fine hair breaks a lot easier than other types of hair? The reason is the shaft of fine hair is very small- fractions smaller and much weaker. Its very important for those of us with fine hair to have fine hair knowledge  so we can make the most of our hair!

Perms and highlights are often recommended to increase volume in fine hair. I am all about these methods- I think that highlights HIGHLY increase the thickness and beauty of my fine hair. However even I will admit to the fact that these methods increase risk for damage. The high possibility for breakage makes it seem impossible to fully increase the volume of fine hair!

Luckily there are style experts out there who have experience and skills that can solve the problems of fine hair! Anyone can learn how to do so in their own home. The best news is that there are plenty of ways to increase fine hair’s volume without using heat or chemicals that will increase breakage.

Get Lazy: skip washing your hair!

When those of us with fine hair wash only every other day (or less) our hair looks very voluminous. If you are worried about your hair looking greasy on days you don’t wash add a wave with styling product. If you plan to wear your hair curly for both days wash with a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner to lock in the moisture.

Train your hair.

If you put your hair into a bun or ponytail before you go to sleep you can increase volume without damaging it. If the hair is wet when you elastic it the curl will hold well but will most likely create frizziness. To eliminate the frizziness blow-dry your hair first, then elastic it. A word to the wise: a bun will create more wave. Ponytails concentrate the volume at the roots.

Volumizing Style Products: Warning!

Although volumizing products may be a fine-haired girl’s best friend, it doesn’t mean she should overload. Too much product will add weight to the hair, counteracting the effect of the product and leading to flat hair.

Acne Care Basics

It happens to the best of us. If Acne had a mother I would go talk to her about the biggest mistake she made by having an offspring. Some people are lucky that acne no longer disrespects them after their teens, but some of us are not so lucky. Adult acne is the worst.

Acne has different grades and can be caused by:

1) Bacteria 2) Clogged follicles 3) Genetics 4) Hormones, Cosmetics, Skin care products, foods and stress.

If you suffer from any type of acne, the good news is, it’s treatable. It might get worse before it get’s better, so pack your PATIENCE, too.

When buying acne products there are active ingredients you need to look for. The Milady Standard Fundamentals lists the following:


1) Benzoyl Peroxide: This product releases oxygen that kills the bacteria and stops the irritating effects of the bacteria; it also irrigates and sloughs out acne impactions

2) Beta Hydroxy acids(salicylic acid): These products work in conjunction with AHA’s to slough old cells and keep follicles open. BHA’s are not as strong as AHA’s, but they are effective when used alone, especially for senstive skin(check for aspirin allergies before using salicylic acid)

3) Sulfur Masks: These are effective acne products that exfoliate skin, and heal and dry blemishes(check for sulfur allergies)

4) Vitamins: These oral vitamins should include zinc and B-complex vitamins.

5) Increase Vitamin C: This oral vitamin has antioxidant value and healing effects.

6) AHA’s(glycolic, lactic, malic, citric, and tartaric acids): These products are used in different percentages and pH factors to disslove the demonsomes between cells to keep skin cells exfoliated. Exfoliation also softens acne impactions and stimulates cell production.

7) Vitam A: This topical vitamin benefits the skin in several ways; it stimulates new cell production and clears up acne impactions and the skin in general.

8) Healing Creams: These products encourage new cell growth.

9) Oxygen therapy treatments: These products reduce bacteria; they also oxygenate and open impacted follicles for easier extractions.

10) Spot blemish treaments: These include products such as tea tree oil, benzoyl peroxide that are applied just on blemishes after cleansing.

Now that you are an “expert” at reading product labels and knowing what works, let’s discuss other factors that can help eliminate acne.

Do it yourself acne care

First things first, you need to wash your face twice daily, preferably with a foaming cleanser.

Be sure to change your pillow case once every 3 days. The oil from your hair does get on your pillow, and then on your face. Most importantly, keep your hair clean.

There are so many products on the market which can be confusing. Don’t know where to start, start by using products with Benzoyl Peroxide and Salicylic Acid. Both can be used in conjunction for better results, one in the morning and the other at night. Use mild products to avoid irritation and redness.

Eliminate comedogenic products. Oil-free does not mean “noncomedogenic”(meaning it won’t clog pores). Examine the ingredients on product labels to determine if they are correct for problem skin(Miladys).

HAVE REGULAR FACIALS at least once a month or as needed. I can’t stress that enough. If you are on a budget, find an esthetics school in your area. It is quite affordable. The students need their hours to graduate, so they need to practice.

DO NOT PICK on your acne or do your own extractions if you don’t know how. It will only make the situation worse.

What you eat throws up on your face, so stay away from greasy food and alcohol.

Use oil free moisturizers. Stay away from sunscreen till your acne clears up.

Exercise, practice stress reduction, and DON’T SWEAT THE LITTLE STUFF ON YOUR FACE, literally (:

Eye Care Basics

So how much do you really take care of your eyes? Do you pay attention to your eyes as much as you do the rest of your body? Well, after age 30, crow’s feet, fine lines, mature lines, and all kinds of lines could tell your age ; don’t let it. This article will give you a few tips on how to get rid of wrinkles and if you are still wrinkle free, what to do to keep them at bay a little longer.

Fine lines and Wrinkles are part of the skin’s aging process. But, with the beauty industry constantly evolving, there are numerous ways to slow it down a tad bit. Sun exposure, environment, smoking, tanning beds, repeated facial expressions, and free radicals are all contributors to wrinkles/fine lines. But first, let’s get a better understanding of these lines.

CROW’S FEET: Studies have shown that most people (men and women) begin to get crow’s feet in their mid-thirties and sometimes late twenties. This is usually caused by smiling (for those that use the muscles next to their eyes to smile, but by all means PLEASE KEEP SMILING), squinting, and sleep patterns (sleeping on the side of your face instead of your back.

FINE LINES/WRINKLES: Wrinkles and fine lines also known as “Rhytydes” occur due to loss of elasticity in the skin, and damage of the collagen. These lines are not just around the eye area, but on the forehead, nose and on other parts of the face.

So, how and what is the “miracle in a jar” that can help get ride of these lines? Sorry. there really isn’t anything that can dramatically reverse severe damage, but there are daily practices that can help reduce and slow down this aging process; investing in EYE CREAMS. The daily moisturizer that you use for the most part is not totally suited to tackle wrinkles around the eyes. The importance of using an eye cream day and night is that it specifically has the right ingredients to tackle the problem areas.

Key Ingredients to look for when buying Eye creams

Vitamin A: This vitamin is used in most moisturizers, but especially in eye creams. It exfoliates dead skin cells, used for sun-damaged skin and wrinkles. If you’ve ever heard of Retin A, Retinol, or Tretinoin, these are all by-products of Vitamin A.

Vitamin C: Just like vitamin A, vitamin C is also an antioxidant. It helps in fighting free radicals, strengthens the immune system and builds collagen.

Vitamin K: Most topical creams have this as an ingredient because it also helps reduce the appearance of fine lines, and spider veins.

When purchasing eye creams, you certainly don’t have to break-the-bank. Yes, there are high end creams, but there are also over the counter creams that are effective. As long as they have one or more of the ingredients listed above, then you are good to go. When applying, please do so carefully in front of a mirror, and make sure it is inches away from your eyes. A little bit goes a long way. But, the most essential thing to remember when slowing down the aging process is to use sunscreen, DAILY. A sunscreen with an SPF of 30 and up is ideal. Most moisturizers and your make-up do have SPF, but the SPF in your make-up is not enough to do the job.

Socially Responsible Make-Up Options recently published a list of makeup brands that were both non-toxic & cruelty free. Below are the 6 U.S. based companies that were mentioned in the article.

Red Apple Lipstick
Founded in 2007 by Jay Adam Harper, Texas based Red Apple Lipstick set out to provide high quality makeup products such as lipsticks, glosses & eyeshadows, while being a positive force socially. The company prides itself on being free from ingredients like GMOs, petroleum, gluten, lead or animal based byproducts. It also stresses the importance of not testing its products on animals. Red Apple Lipstick holds this same standard of not testing on animals to all of its suppliers as well.

Everyday Minerals
Another socially conscience cosmetic company is Everyday Minerals. This Woman owned business was founded in Austin, TX and offers products like concealers, blush, eye shadow and more. Everyday Minerals has signed with the Leaping Bunny Organization, which requires signed affidavits of both the company & its suppliers to be 100% cruelty free. In addition, Everyday Minerals uses real botanicals & pure minerals, and offers its products in recyclable packaging.

Emani Vegan Cosmetics
California based Emani Vegan Cosmetics also made’s list of cosmetics that were non-toxic & cruelty free. The company’s products are 100% vegan and contain no toxic products that would harm skin. Emani has two distinctions in its efforts to be socially conscience; it supports the Campaigns for Safe Cosmetics & it is certified by PETA to be 100% cruelty free.

Minnesota based cosmetic & fragrence company Aromi (Finnish for Aroma) was founded in 2009 by Hannah Follis. In addition to making “fun & colorful” products, the company’s mission is to produce cosmetics that use only the finest, vegan based ingredients.

Modern Minerals
Another US-Based company to make the list was Modern Minerals. Specializing in Mineral Foundation, Eyeshadow, Blush & Bronzers, Modern Minerals proudly communicates that their products are free of toxic ingredients like Synthetic Parabens or Phthalates. They are also Leaping Bunny and PETA certified, producing cosmetics that are free of any animal testing.

Au Naturale Cosmetics
Au Naturale Cosmetic founder Ashley Prange has a belief that no woman should have to sacrifice her health and values for beauty. She Founded the Wisconsin based Au Naturale Cosmetics which are free of harmful, toxic ingredients, chemicals, parabens or heavy metals. The company also supports the Zambia Open Community Schools project, which strives to bring education to the African nation of Zambia.

A Look at Various Types of Lipsticks

Women spend a lot of time on their appearance and beauty care. Makeup plays a vital role in doing this. Makeup brands do their best to provide you with makeup products, which are necessary to look young and beautiful.

Lipstick is an inseparable part of makeup for most women. Choose a lipstick that suits you best, emphasizes your personality and uniqueness and outlines your sexy lips.

So let’s go through the types of lip makeup products and see which one is for you.

If you have dry lips go for moisturizing lipsticks. They contain aloe, glycerin and vitamin E, which will keep your lips soft and more hydrated. These high-shine lipsticks will give your lips a wet look.

Another type of lipstick that women commonly use is satin or sheer lipstick. Like the former type, this type too is preferred by those women who have dry lips. These lipsticks contain a good deal of oil, which keeps your lips soft and shiny. But these lipsticks look darker in their tube than on your lips, so consider this while choosing the color.

Cream lipsticks are good for women who have small lips. But if you want to have the sexy lips look, then I advise you to apply it with a lip gloss, since cream lipsticks are not shiny. Note that though they effectively protect the lips, they last for a shorter time.

Do you want your lips to appear unique, sexy and more alive? Go for pearl/frosted lipsticks. These lipsticks are best for parties. But apply them with a moisturizer, since they can make your sexy lips feel heavy and even dry.

Beauty brands have found the best solution for busy women who don’t have time to apply their lipstick frequently- long wearing and transfer-resistant lipsticks. These lip products last for four to eight hours. Apply them with a moisturizing lipstick base to avoid drying.

Matte lipsticks have very nice and colorful shades, but are flat and don’t shine like other lip products. To keep your lips and mouth moisturized, apply these lipsticks with makeup products containing vitamin E and aloe.

Gloss lipsticks are the most common types of lipsticks. Women of different ages prefer these lipsticks. By the way you will everywhere read that gloss lipsticks suit women with thin and small lips. I don’t agree because my lips are not small, but the only lipstick I use is my pink lip gloss.

Choose your perfect lipstick and have a shiny smile.

Tattoo Removal in Tampa, FL

A great many people view the tattoo they got in their youth as something they no longer want to display. Changes in life, employment, relationships or other factors are commonly cited when seeking tattoo removal treatments. Now, with the advances in laser technology, laser tattoo removal can make eliminating unwanted tattoos fast & effective.

There are many doctors & medical facilities in the Tampa Bay area that offer laser tattoo treatments. These professionals have treated patients from all across the Tampa & Hillsborough County region including St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Brandon, New Port Richey, Lakeland, Wesley Chapel, Plant City & more.

Tampa Tattoo Removal

Tattaway is one of the most popular options for tattoo removal in the Tampa area with offices in Tampa, Sarasota, Brandon & Clearwater. Tattaway offers the NaturaLase QS laser, which is one of the most powerful lasers on the market. The Naturalase penetrates deep within the skin for faster, more effective tattoo removal. Tattaway currently boasts a 4.5 rating in Google, with additional positive reviews in both Yelp & Facebook.

Tattaway Tattoo Removal Review

Skinspirations is another provider of tattoo removal services in the Tampa area. Skinspirations uses a Q-switched laser that can produce different wavelengths to target several colors. Under the supervision of Dr. Cynthia Elliott, Skinspirations has been performing skin care treatments in the Bay area for over 20 years.


Before & After Tattoo Removal Treatment at SkinSpirations Tampa







LaserSpa of Tampa Bay also offers laser tattoo removal for residents of the Bay area. LaserSpa of Tampa Bay uses the Medlite C6, one of the most respected lasers on the market today. The Medlite C6 provides little to no risk of scarring or pigment changes and can remove a wide range of tattoo ink colors.

NorthCountyDermatologyNorth County Dermatology Center in Lakeland, FL offers a new laser technology called the Picosure laser for tatoo removal. Picosure has been featured in a number of media outlets across the country. The new technology can target many tattoo colors and can be completed in fewer sessions compared to other lasers.

Tattoo Removal in St. Louis, MO

New advancements in laser technology has made removing unwanted tattoos quicker, less invasive and less painful than previous methods. If you are unhappy with the appearance of a tattoo or if it no longer fits your lifestyle, doctors & medical spas can effectively remove your unwanted ink.

For St. Louis residents who wish to remove their unwanted tattoos, there are many options for treatments. Below is information on clinics in St. Louis Missouri that offer new laser removal treatments. These service providers have treated patient from all over the St. Louis area including O’Fallon, St. Charles, Chesterfield, Ellisville, Florissant & more.

St Louis Tattoo Removal

A popular provider of laser tattoo removal in the area is Vanishing Point Laser Tattoo Removal. Located in Universal City, this medical facility offers the Medlite C6 laser, one of the most well respected lasers on the market today. The Medlite C6 laser has been shown to remove tattoos with many different color inks. Vanishing Point is one of the best rated tattoo removal facility, boasting a 5 star rating on both Yelp & Google (as of January 2015). Below is one of the reviews from Yelp.

I love Vanishing Point. The mistake I made when I was 21 needed to disappear before my wedding. I spent a lot of time researching various places for tattoo removal and I finally settled on Vanishing Point. Their prices are the best around and the staff is fabulous. The treatments are fast and, while a little painful, the results are worth it. I would highly recommend them. – Andrea D. Yelp

Midwest Vein Care with offices in Chesterfield, MO offers complete removal, lightening, or partial removal of tattoos. The Q-Switched ND:YAG laser used at the clinic emits wavelengths of light and effectively treats tattoos.

Syngeri Medical Spa in Chesterfield, MO is another facility that offers the Medlite C6 laser for tattoo removal. Dr. Richard Maack and his trained staff have been offering skin care treatments in the St. Louis area for years. The center was awarded with a Professional’s Choice Award from American Spa in 2012.

St. Louis Vein Specialties with offices in both Saint Louis & Washington, is another choice for tattoo removal in the St. Louis Area. Their Clean Slate Tattoo Removal service offers The Astanza Trinity Laser to remove tattoos of all kinds. Vein Specialties was featured on KMOV’s Great Day Saint Louis talking about their tattoo removal procedure.

Tattoo Removal in Seattle, WA

The demand for tattoo removal seem to grow each year. Many individuals are regretting the trendy lower back tattoo, tribal arm tattoo or ex-girlfriend / boyfriend tattoo that they received years earlier. With advancements in laser technology, getting a tattoo removed is quicker & less painful than earlier methods.

Luckily for residents of Seattle & King County interested in getting a tattoo removed, there are a number of doctors & medical professionals that offer this service. These doctors have treated patients from across the Seattle area including Spokane, Tacoma, Vancouver, Bellevue, Everett, Kent, Yakima, Bellingham, Shoreline, Renton, Lynwood & more.

Seattle Tattoo Removal

One of the most popular providers for tattoo removal in the Seattle area is Blink Tattoo Removal. This local business is convenient with four locations across the area including Bellevue, Edmonds, Olympia & Seattle. Blink Tattoo Removal has a number of lasers that are effective in removing tattoos including the RevLite Q-switched Nd:YAG laser, the Accolade high-powered Q-switched Alexandrite laser & the award winning Spectra Q-switched Nd:YAG laser. As of January 2015, Blink had 11 reviews on Yelp with an average rating of 4.5. 7 of their 11 yelp reviews were 5 star ratings.

Caddell’s Laser & Electrolysis Clinic in Bellevue, WA also offers tattoo removal for residents of Seattle. As of January 2015, Caddell’s had an A+ rating on and had a 4.5 rating on Yelp from 10 ratings. Caddell’s has earned the trust of local Seattle area tattoo artists and have even had a booth at the Seattle Tattoo Expo since 2002.

Bellevue Laser Cosmetic Center is another option for tattoo removal in the Seattle area. The Center offers the Q-switched laser which is effective in removing many types of tatoos. Dr. Diane Chiu and her staff have been positively reviewed on both Yelp & Google.

The Mill Creek Skin & Laser Center in Mill Creek, WA offers the new PicoSure laser tattoo removal system. The PicoSure laser was recently featured on “The Doctors” television program and has generated a lot of buzz across the industry. The laser states it is 100x faster than other traditional laser technology and highly effective in removing tattoos. Mill Creek has posted a number of videos on You-Tube showing the procedure on their clients.

Tattoo Removal in San Antonio, TX

Do you have a tattoo of an ex somewhere on your body? Do you have a tattoo that no longer fits your lifestyle? Do you have a tattoo that you are no longer happy with? If so, you are not alone. Tattoo removal is a fast growing cosmetic treatment, as lasers have made the process much safer and more effective than past methods.

If you live in the San Antonio area and are considering laser tattoo removal treatments, there are a number of quality providers of the service. These doctors & medical spas have treated residents all across the San Antonio area including Seguin, New Braunfels, Alamo Heights, La Coste & San Marcos.

San Antonio Tattoo Removal

One clinic in the San Antonio area offering laser tattoo removal is Medermis Laser Clinic. Medermis has received a number of positive reviews including a 4.7/5 star rating on Google (based off 15 reviews). Below is one of the positive reviews from Google:

I was incredibly nervous about getting my tattoo removed–I had heard it was super expensive, hurt way too much, and left a lot of unwanted scarring, discoloration, etc. My dad found this place in San Antonio, and on the first visit I felt confident that I would be taken care of! Everyone was incredibly nice and the lady who did my sessions was very informative on proper after-care, didn’t mind answering all of my nervous questions, and was overall just super helpful and nice! It only took four sessions (they had originally predicted 6) to take care of a dark grey tattoo about the size of a half dollar. Price was great for the job they did! It did hurt quite a bit, but not enough to stop me from going. MINIMAL discoloration after my last session–ink is completely gone and there’s hardly any sign of the tattoo. I really do recommend this place–super nice staff, decently priced, great results!

Medermis-Tattoo-RemovalIn addition to positive reviews, Medermis has received media attention as owner Mike Livermore was featured in an article on The laser provided by Medermis can eliminate most tattoos but the number of treatments needed will depend on the size & color of the specific tattoo.

Another medical spa offering laser tattoo removal is Derm SA. With three locations across San Antonio, Derm SA is one of the most convenient choices for tattoo removal in the area. The clinic uses the Lutronic Spectra Laser (which is also used by Medermis) for tattoo removal. This laser is highly effective in removing many different tattoo inks.

The White Pearl Medical Spa is yet another provider of tattoo removal in the area. White Pearl uses the Tri-Lase laser system to remove unwanted tattoos. The Tri-Lase system has two different wavelengths of light that can target various tattoo inks, which makes it an ideal system for blue, black, red & green ink colors.

Mission Vein & Laser offers the Picosure laser, a new laser technology that has been in the news a lot lately. The Picosure is the fastest laser in the world for tattoo removal, able to greatly reduce tattoos in fewer treatments. Whie most lasers take 6-8 treatments to remove a tattoo, the Picosure can achieve up to 75% reduction in 1-2 treatments. This laser has been featured on “The Doctors” and other TV shows including “San Antonio Living”.