skin, hair, and nail things that have treated me well in November and December

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This little eye cream in a tube by Cerave is convenient, hygienic, inexpensive, and very moisturizing. If I forget this for a day, I notice. When I started using it, I noticed that my eye makeup (foundation, concealer, and shadows) went on a hell of a lot better. I have tried more expensive eye creams, and this one tops them, in my humble, pharmacy-skincare-fanatic opinion.

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My heavy-duty moisturizers. I use the Cetaphil cream on my face almost every night and some mornings (let’s be real, I don’t get my shit together until the afternoon). Makeup goes on fine over it. It’s super rich but not greasy. I also use it after a shower/bath all over. It’s cheap, a jar lasts forever, and it feels so luxurious! I spot treat with the Aquaphor. Flaky nose, lips, brows, scabs (gross), whatever. Once every week or two I put on a thin layer on my whole face overnight. It doesn’t break me out, it just banishes any dryness (can you tell how much I obsessively hate dry skin?).

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My holy grail every day or I’ll die moisturizers. My dermatologist told me to use them, and she is a saint. Or a god. Or something. They are exactly the same except for the one marked a.m. has sun protection. They sink right into the skin and leave it soft but not shiny. Foundation applies like a dream over them (after a primer) (haven’t tried without a primer because I am a believer in the priming).

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THIS STUFF. MAN, OH MAN, THIS STUFF. If you have acne scars, BUY IT NOW. Get your ass to Sephora and drop the dollars because this gets rid of them!! I know, I know, there are some scary studies about lab rats who were dunked into super-concentrated vats of hydroquinone. But I quit drinking and smoking and diet coke. I will keep rubbing hydroquinone on my face. Shoot me (please don’t it will leave a scar!) (or do, the scar will be gone in two weeks!).

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My cleansers. I have a special place in my heart for these guys. Washing my face twice daily is so soothing. I get so… so zen about the whole thing. In the morning I just use the Cetaphil, like my dermatologist told me to. I love this cleanser. I love all of these cleansers. Sigh. At night I use the rest all mixed together. The Biore black cleanser seriously gets all of the shit out of your pores. My derm did not tell me to use this, but commented on how perfectly empty my pores were after I started using. Yeah, I said using, like drugs. It’s that good. The scrub is a super cheap, fine scrub that is suitable for daily use and smells nice. The Blemish Control Bar is a sacred thing. It contains sulphur and salicylic acid and other goodies that beat acne-causing demons out of your life with brass knuckles. It somehow does not dry you out or sting you in the process, because It is kind. My derm sold me the Blemish Control Bar. Miracles come in little jars.

My cleansing routine is intense and not for the faint-of-heart. So was my acne! But now it is gone. Gone!

When I go to wash my face at night, lover says, “is it okay if I watch an episode of Frasier while you’re in there?”

Frasier was our thing that we watched together.

Face routine, you’re tearing us apart!!

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Basic chapstick. I buy the five-pack and have one in every coat pocket and two (?) in the bathroom. I use it every night and under every lipstick or gloss. My lips stay nice. (I have not yet mentioned on this blog that I am a professional trombonist. I am not kidding. I am working on a degree in trombone, of all things. So my lips have to stay nice. They are the only thing making me any money.)

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Hair and nails. I always get “your hair looks nice today!” when I use it’s a 10. I don’t know what it does, exactly. It really does feel silky. And the Crew pomade is my favorite pomade of the moment. I use it when I want to look polished and extra androgynous. The nail treatment has made my nails super strong. They never break anymore. My nails barely bend (and they are long). It looks fine on its own, and it works very well as a base coat.

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These make your scalp feel like it is brushing its teeth, and it feels amazing. My super thick hair is shinier and more manageable since I started using this line.

You might be able to tell that I am a tad OCD about skincare. So be it. It calms me down. That’s kind of the thing with OCD, the rituals calm you down. But at least these are socially acceptable and okayed by someone with a degree.

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Get Un-Ready With Me! (winter skincare)

Time to take off day 1 of Project Pan! It wore well, except for this bothersome blemish on my chin, sigh.

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First, I cleanse my skin with a scrub, a charcoal pore cleanser, and my dermatologist’s recommended blemish bar (contains sulfur and salicylic acid). I use all of these with a CVS knock-off of a Clarisonic.

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The scrub smooths my skin, the Biore charcoal cleanser keeps my pores so clear that my dermatologist even commented on their emptiness (!), and the PCA blemish bar has done a really good job of halting breakouts. I’ve had about 75% less acne since I started using it.

Next are my serums… I have a serum addiction. Anything to fix my acne scarring!!

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The Murad serum has definitely significantly lightened my hyper pigmentation from years of acne. It’s too soon to tell with the Clinique. The Estée Lauder and the Palmers serum are great for extra moisture under a cream.

Speaking of creams…

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Wow, I put a lot of shit on my face at night! But nothing beats hydrated skin… other than clear skin (yes, I’m looking at you, genes). The Cetaphil cream seals the deal as far as winter moisturizers go. Cerave was recommended to me by my dermatologist, and she also prescribed Eletone. So I mix them all together. And some Cerave eye cream can’t hurt (in fact, eye makeup goes on much better when I’ve been using it for a while).

Throw in some toothpaste and chapstick and you have my winter nighttime routine! Any tips for dark spots or dry skin? I’d love to hear them in the comments. 🙂

xoxo

Martha