clinique moisture surge and how I got my skin back to normal

unnamedBeauty blogging is so much fun and I love every minute of it, but I have to admit that along with learning about so many great beauty products, comes the overwhelming desire to try all the new products that are out on the market. I get tons of information, watch and read product reviews and like to see what works for other people out there. What happens when I try new products, as fancy and beautiful the packaging may be, and as wonderful as their claims may be (“use this for that natural JLo glow” or “these are the top 5 skincare products Miranda Kerr swears by”), is that I break out!

I recently had some break outs that lasted for weeks and could not for the life of me figure out what the cause was. So what did I do? I went back to the basics. I went back to those elements of my skincare routine which I know for a fact do not cause irritation or breakouts. Even more important for me was to be consistent with this routine and for a whole week, I only used these products- no exfoliating scrubs, no masks or anything fancy. It began to bring my skin back to normal and did not lead to additional break outs- so I tried it for another week. I am now on my third week of this routine and have begun to include my beloved ANR back into my PM routine. This has been working well.

If there’s anything I’ve learned about skincare it is this- keep it gentle and keep it consistent. You know your skin best! What works for someone else’s skin, may not work for you. If your skin starts to act up, take a step back and see what has been tried and true for you. Stick with that for a few weeks before adding anything else in. When in doubt, keep it simple.


These are products in my simple skincare routine are:

  1. Clnique extra mild facial soap: This is an extremely mild non foaming cleanser. I have gone back to this time and time again. I know I can always count on it. It is fragrance free. I have been using it every morning for the past few weeks now and am very pleased.
  2. Aveda Toning Mist: I follow my cleansing step with this toning mist. This is my go to toner and I’ve been using for around a year now. I definitely can’t be without it.
  3. Clinique Superdefense eye cream SPF 20:   I have been using this eye cream every morning since this past summer. It is light, has no scent and sits nicely under my makeup. I really love this eye cream.
  4. Clinique dramatically different lotion: I follow my toning mist with this lotion and my skin feels nice and hydrated afterwards. This is a staple in my skincare for any time of the year.
  5. MD Solar Sciences SPF 50- I don’t use this as a moisturizer but for SPF protection and to keep my face matte all day. This is the only product I’ve used which truly keeps me shine free. I am on my third tube. I use it every single day- a small amount is all I need. It may look like it has a white caste, but that absorbs very quickly. Love this stuff.
  6. Clinique Moisture Surge- This is a somewhat recent discovery for me. It is similar to the dramatically different gel but is far more hydrating. I like to use it in the evenings as my last step or on days when I know I will be makeup free. It has an amazingly soothing effect on the skin immediately upon application and sinks in within seconds. My skin drinks this up and I am very happy to have found it. Even my husband loves this stuff! The more I use this, the more I love it.

The hardest part about sticking to this routine is sticking to this routine. I try not to be tempted by something in my stash, but for now I am committed to keeping my skin in normal condition.

What products are tried, tested and true for you?


clinique take the day off cleansing balm

Take The Day Off™ Cleansing BalmI have been loyal to my Cliniqiue take the day off cleansing oil and am on my third bottle. I love the consistency, the fact that it doesnt break me out, and how soft it leaves my skin. The ONLY reason why I considered switching to something else was that this cleaning oil was not completely removing my eye makeup so I had to use a separate eye makeup remover before and sometimes even after. I love the lancome bi facil eye makeup remover but I didn’t really think it made much sense to be using two separate products to remove makeup. I did some research and found this balm version of the makeup remover. I had no idea whether I would like the texture, but then again I never thought I would like the oil and I really enjoyed it.

The verdict on this balm:

Not only is it a mini spa experience where I get in a nice facial massage as I remove my makeup,I don’t need to use a lot of product to get the job done. It feels so luxurious and soft, it just melts right into my skin, but not in any greasy way. The best part is- when I rinse it off with warm water, every trace of eye makeup is gone! A small amount goes a long way and it leaves my skin feeling soft and clean without any filmy or oily residue.

I also like that this is fragrance free and it works well for people like me who have sensitive acne prone skin. In general, there are very few skin care lines that do not break me out.  Clinique is one of them and for this I will forever be loyal to it.

I think that both the cleansing oil and the cleansing balm are excellent makeup removing options, especially for sensitive and/or acne prone skin. If you are looking to choose one over the other, I would go with this one because it removes all of my eye makeup as well. I also like the fact that it is so conducive to the massage process (it’s so relaxing) and that a small amount of product goes a long way, which was not the case for me with the cleansing oil.

Thanks to Clinique for continuing to make great products for people of all skin types, even us sensitive skin ones! This balm is brilliant and has earned a spot in the holy grail section of my skincare world.

What is your favorite makeup remover? Do you have any Clinique favs? Are there any skincare brands that you are loyal to? Let me me know by leaving a comment!

beauty · food · good reads · photography · Uncategorized

september favorites

I am bit late in posting my favs for last month, but hey, better late than never! Here are some things I have been loving. It’s kind of shocking how Fall weather hit us all of a sudden. We literally went from 80 degrees to chilly 50 degree mornings! Chutney wore his sweater this morning before heading out for his walk! He was very happy about it:)

Here we go!


Starbucks toasted graham latte– I went in for my first pumpkin spice latte of the season a few weeks ago and saw this beautifully illustrated on chalkboard–I love how starbucks does that, by the way! I thought I’d give it a try and wow I am so glad I did. I don’t like my drinks super sweet, so I asked for half the amount of pumps they add for sweetness (which is what I usually do). I also asked to have mine with soy milk- this is imperative! I will explain why later. One sip and I was hooked! This drink has just the right amount of sweetness, tastes like smores and is topped with crushed graham crackers. Need I say more?? You HAVE to have this with soy milk- it tastes much better this way! My husband and I found ourselves in need of a caffeine break while shopping this past weekend and when we placed our orders, they told us they ran out of soy. So I got it with 2% milk and was so disappointed. I think the soy is really important in this drink and enhances the flavor. If you wanna get really crazy, get an extra shot. WOW is all I can say.

Bath and Body Works Candles: Read all about my obsession with fall candles here.


Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid lipstick in Lolita: I love the color and staying power of this lipstick along with the gorgeous color! This is my perfect fall shade. It looks great during the day or night and is universally flattering. I like to wear this with neutral eye makeup (using too faced natural mattes or Clinique’s morning java  and I’ve been loving it with Clinique’s blush in sunset glow. It’s my favorite fall look!

Why not me? by Mindy Kaling: This book along with the author’s previous book, Is everyone hanging out without me?, are hilarious. I don’t think I have ever laughed out loud so much while reading a book. I even had people wondering what I was reading as I laughed my way to and from work on the subway this past month:) This is a great read and I am such a fan of Mindy Kaling. It’s too bad her show is not on the air anymore. I need to get Hulu!



Chutney’s new rain coat: Our little guy was getting to dirty going out in the rain and even when the ground was wet. So we had to get him a raincoat. Ok, maybe we didn’t have to and maybe I put it on him a few times when it wasn’t raining or even wet outside, but how cute does he look?! Just when I thought he couldn’t get any cuter, I discover doggie raincoats? I can’t even.

What are your September favs? beauty, books, movies, TV shows? Would love to know!!