Serums, scrubs and such

4:46 PM

This post will be a review of the multitude of scrubs, serums, and masks I have used over the years.  I have used so many, I am sure there will be some that I forget to mention.  Eczema sufferers have to be extremely careful of the kind of scrubs, peels, serums etc..we use.  If we use the wrong one, our skin can be red, inflamed, dry and itchy for days or weeks. Hopefully this list will give you an idea of some good and bad products for eczema.  Also, please leave comments of masks, scrubs, or serums that you have tried.  I am always looking to try something new.
1.)     Queen Helene Mint Julep Face Masque. It is good for drying up pimples, reducing oily appearance and shrinking pores.  My skin never dried out while using it, unless I used it more than twice a week.  Also, it is inexpensive and can be found at CVS, Sally Beauty Supply and ULTA.
2.)    Queen Helene Mint Julep Scrub: Not my favorite scrub in the world.  The consistency was strange and a little harsh.
3.)    St. Ives Apricot Scrub.  Now this is an amazing scrub and has been given many beauty awards.  I cannot read a magazine without seeing this product, and for good reason.  It is cheap, but very effecting.  It gets rid of dead skin and clears put pores wonderfully.
4.)    Philosophy Micro delivery Peel.  This is a great peel for sensitive skin as long as you do not overload on the lactic/salicylic acid activating gel.  I made that mistake once and it was not pretty.  This is a great way to brighten your complexion and it is simple to use.  It has two parts: 1.) put the vitamin C/Peptide Resurfacing Crystals all over your face. 2.) Put the activating gel over the crystals.  You will feel a slight warming (not burning) sensation.  If it burns, you have used too much of the activating gel.  As long as you use it once a week and do not use too much of the activating gel, this is a good peel for sensitive skin.
5.)    Philosophy Micro Delivery Face Wash.  Very gentle scrub.  I used this every morning, and the Purity Cleanser at night.  My skin looked great. BUT, if you skip either one of the steps, your face will really show it.  For instance, if I skipped using the scrub, I could feel small pimples form along my jaw line.
6.)    Philosophy When Hope Is Not Enough serum:  I really love this serum, but feel it is a bit too pricey for the amount you get.  It has vitamin C, vitamin E and other good stuff that brighten skin and fight aging.  I can’t speak for the anti-aging benefits, but it did make my skin softer and my face looked more awake (a wonderful thing for pre-med students like myself).  It also absorbed quickly.
7.)    Bliss Triple Oxygen Instant Energizing Mask.  I find this to be relaxing and soothing.  When I have an eczema flare up, this seems to soothe my skin.  It is very different from other masks in that it foams once rubbed in.  It also smells nice.
8.)    St. Ives Naturally Clear Green Tea Scrub.  This is one of the few natural products that does not irritate my skin.  However, after using this product for a few weeks, I did not see any change in my skin.  The apricot scrub is much more effective.
9.)    Sephora Dual Smart Dual Action Exfoliator. This product is ingenious.  It is perfect for sensitive, combination skin.  One side is a cream with gentle exfoliating beads and the other is a deep cleansing cream for the T-zone. After applying the exfoilator, apply the deep cleansing cream on the forehead, nose and chin (you may feel a slight warming sensation). My skin always feels very smooth and clean after using this.  I would highly recommend giving this product a try.
10.)  Laboratoire Remède Sweep.  If you want a very basic scrub with no other added effects, this one is for you (but I’m sure you can find a cheaper one out there.)  This scrub isn’t tough, but is not the most gentle.  It has no smell, which can be important for some people.  I received a full size tube of it with a Bliss order a long time ago and have only used it a few times.  When I do use it, I like to mix it with another cleanser.
11.)  Boots Botanics Conditioning Clay Mask.  The one thing I hate about this mask is that you have to shake the tube for a good 5 minutes to obtain a consistency that is not pure liquid.  It is conditioning and also clarifying; my pores felt squeaky clean.  I also noticed that it caused some very mild irritation if I used it more than once a week.
12.) Queen Helene Olive Oil Masque is perfect for dry skin; it also works for combination skin.  It is very moisturizing and contains sage and chamomile extracts.  Both are great for soothing irritated skin.
13.)  Murad Clarifying Mask. An amazing acne treatment, and gentle.  It helps clear up minor blemishes without being too drying and does not irritate my skin at all.  Instead of using salicylic acid like most acne treatments, the active ingredient is sulfur.  I use this sparingly though, since I consider this to be a bit pricey for the amount you get.  I have had my tube for four or five months and still have about half left.  It doesn’t take much and I only use it once a week.
14.) Freeman Beauty Pineapple Enzyme Mask:  I never got to see the actual results of this product.  It caused my eyes to sting worse than anything I have ever used, and I didn't put it anywhere near my eyes.
15.) Freeman Beauty Superfruuits Detoxifying Clay Facial Mask:  Love this one.  I just used used it and my skin feels so much better. My face feels clean, very smooth and I can feel a difference in some minor blemishes.  It is pretty safe to say that this one is my favorite of this list.
16.) Freeman Beauty Cucumber Peel Off Mask:  This one brings back memories; it was the very first mask I used.  Now they make it in a real bottle; I had to use a packet that had enough for 3 or 4 uses.  One word comes to mind with this one: ouch.  I remember that this mask was very refeshing and cooling, but didn't really accomplish much else.  Even though it was slightly painful to remove, it was also fun.  However, I can see where this would not be a good product for eczema or sensitive skin.  I can't imagine having to put a lot of effort into peeling this off being good for anyones skin.  It would just add to the irritation of an eczema flare up, or possibly cause one.
17.) Perricone MD Intensive Pore Minimizer. This has the consistency of a toner, but has 1% salicylic acid so it is a gentle, yet effective way to get rid of blackheads and blemishes.  It may sting a little the first couple of times you use it, but it is not bad and quickly goes away.  I am currently using this morning and night for the last 3 days.  My pores feel much cleaner, which means the also look smaller.
18.) Neutrogena Acne Stress Relief Toner.  This one is a little harsh, and stings a good deal.  If you are looking for a toner, I would suggest finding a more gentle one. However, if you have skin that is not very sensitive and have acne, I would say give this a try.

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