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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Day 31 of 31 Days of Beauty on a Budget

Well, y'all, we have done this thang. :)

I really can't believe today is the last day of my 31 Days of Beauty on a Budget series! I'm really proud of myself for sticking with it for the whole 31 days. I tried my best to bring you guys good, quality posts that would give you ideas of products you wanted to try, tips to apply your makeup, or even just food for thought. I hope I succeeded and that you are taking something away from these 31 posts!

This has been such a labor of love and I truly have had such a blast putting these posts together. I think it is true what they say - when you enjoy what you do, it isn't work! 

You're probably wondering where I plan to go from here. Well, you can expect to see at least 2 beauty posts per week from me. My goal is to film one tutorial per week so you will continue to see vlogs from me as well. I will not continue to blog on weekends - I plan to post Monday-Friday. The other days will be posts about my family, snark, my life, Cooper, recipes, crafts... just other things of interest to me and hopefully to you!

I hope those of you who are new to this blog will stick around. I thank you for reading this month! My faithfuls - you are truly the reason I blog. I wouldn't continue to write if no one was reading. 

I've been praying hard about the direction of my blog in the future. I've been asking God to open doors and he has! I hope this blog does nothing but grow and reach more people. I've never put much stock in page views or follow numbers... I just want to know something I wrote meant something to someone. I hope my writing touches you!

Please let me know if you have any tutorial requests or ideas for future posts. If there are questions you have, leave them in the comments and I will either email you or address them in a post!

As always, thank you for reading!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

October Winners & Losers

I can’t believe it is almost October’s end. Where has the month gone? I’ve had such a blast with this series and I hope you have learned something from me.

The end of October means it is time to recap some of my favorite items from the month, and some items that did not work for me at all. Hopefully you’ll find some things to add to your wish list, and some items to stay away from!


I’ve been wearing the Too Faced Shadow Bon Bons Set ($42) since I got it. LOVE. It is a great combination of colors, and every shadow is super pigmented. You also get an eyeshadow primer and a mascara. So far, this is one of the stand out holidays palettes in my opinion.

I’ve had the Too Faced LashGasm Mascara ($21) for quite some time. I used it for months during spring and them stepped away from it during the summer. I got a full sized mascara with the palette above, and I fell in love all over again. It creates the longest, most defined lashes ever. The one drawback is that it isn’t waterproof. It doesn’t smudge on me, but if I cry, I get raccoon eyes.

The Hourglass Opaque Rouge Liquid Lipstick ($28) seriously stays put all day. You can even wipe it off and the color remains on your lips. I have Muse and Empress, and I want to add Icon to my collection soon.

I have been using the Lorac Front of the Line Pro ($23) black liquid liner since February. I love that the felt tips allows me to control the line I draw, and the color flows out without tugging at my eyes. It does not run or smudge on my lids, yet I can still remove mistakes with a q-tip dipped in water.

I’m continuing to love the Yes To Carrots Anti Frizz Serum ($7.99). I think I’ve finally found a product that will allow me to accept my natural waves!


I’m normally such a fan of Too Faced’s products, but the Love Sweet Love Set ($46) did not live up to my expectations. My Shadow Insurance primer was completely runny and oily, and the shadows did not blend well. I’m very disappointed in this set.

I had heard such good things about the Kat Von D Lock It Tattoo Foundation ($34), and I rushed out to Sephora to get a sample. I’m glad I tried it before I purchased! It’s supposed to be a very matte and full coverage foundation, leaving a finish reminiscent of the 60’s. I found it to be very heavy and difficult to apply.

The Milani Haute Flash Lip Gloss ($7.49) feels terrible on your lips. Seriously, it’s like applying sand. What is up with companies thinking we want to wear glitter on our lips? No, Milani, NO.

What are you loving and hating this month?

Monday, October 29, 2012

Splurge Vs. Steal: Blushes

Blushes are sort of an underrated makeup item, I think. They add so much color to your face, and can wake up your complexion. Think about it – you don’t necessarily notice someone’s blush when they are wearing it, but if they aren’t you sure do!

Overall, in this category, I think high end blushes are worth the extra money. Speaking broadly, drugstore blushes tend to last long and impart more color with just one swipe of your blush brush. Here are my favorites!


Tarte Amazonian Clay 12 Hour Blush ($25) really does what it advertises. When I wear this, it lasts all day! I’m not crazy about the color selection, however. I think some of the colors are a little washed out, for lack of a better word. My favorite colors are Adored, Frisky, Exposed, and Blissful.

Every girl should have a NARS blush in their makeup collection ($28). Nobody does blushes quite like NARS. The blushes are super pigmented and the names are, well, naughty and fun. Try Orgasm, Deep Throat, and Angelika.

I’ve been wearing Benefit blushes ($28) forever. Seriously, I’ve had Dandelion since 2007. You will never get to the bottom of this little box. I use and love Coralista, Dandelion, Sugar Bomb, and Bella Bamba. Dallas is great for those with darker skin tones. Hoola makes a great bronzer!

If I had to pick my absolute favorite blush, it would be Bobbi Brown’s blush in Pale Pink ($25). The color is intimidating in the package, but it looks amazing on everyone.


Drugstore blushes as a whole tend to frustrate me. Either they are extremely chalky or they leave little to no color on your face. Frustrating! I have found a few that impress me.

NYX Powder Blush is very pigmented, and a steal at $5.99. Try Pinched, Rose Garden, Summer Peach, and Mauve. I actually think Pinched is very similar to NARS Orgasm!

I’ve shared my love of ELF blushes before. I mean, $3 for a blush? Yes please! Tickled Pink, Pink Passion, and Peachy Keen are dupes of more expensive blushes.


Besides lipstick, I think blush is the one makeup item that wears off pretty quickly. Through trial and error, I’ve come up with a method to extend the lasting power of my blush.

Tip: Layer powder blush over cream blush. The cream causes the powder to “stick” and really makes your blush last all day. I like to use the Sigma F84 Angled Kabuki Blush.

Here are some of my favorite cream blushes!

NYX Cream Blushes ($6.99) are fab. I love the color selection and they apply like a dream. Try Tickled, Hot Pink, and Boho Chic.

My friend Susan recommended the Maybelline Dream Bouncy Blushes ($7.99) to me and I really like them! The texture of the blush is a little drier so I think for beginnings they are easier to apply.

I picked up the Revlon PhotoReady Cream Blush ($12.99) one day on a whim and I’m so glad I did. The quality is superb. I love Coral Reef, Flushed, and Pink.

Lastly, I love Sephora’s Double Contouring Cream Blushes ($14). A little goes a long way because these cream blushes are super pigmented. I have Poppy, a bright pinkish coral color.

What are your favorite blushes? Will you be trying out any of the products I’ve recommended?

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Learn With Me: How To Apply False Lashes


Hello friends!

I have a confession to make: I don’t wear false lashes. I know; this is one of those things every (self titled) beauty maven is supposed to know how to do. Well, I have decent lashes on my own, so I’ve just never seen the need. Plus, it find it quite intimidating. Something about the glue, the tweezers, the lash strips just sends me running in the other direction.

As with highlighter, this is not an everyday look. It’s for special occasions, holidays, nights out, parties, photo sessions, etc. Don’t walk into work with a full strip of lashes. You will look ridiculous.

My mom has alopecia and doesn’t grow eyelashes, so she actually does wear lash strips every day. There are exceptions to that rule, obviously.

Back to my confession: I think I’ve only applied false lashes twice. We’re going to work through this thing together, friends. Watch (with me) and learn (with me).

I consulted two sources before I attempted this myself. The lovely ladies at Pixiwoo are always spot on with their tutorials, and The Beauty Department provided an alternative method of application that they say takes the guesswork out of the equation.

Source: Pixiwoo YouTube Channel

Source: The Beauty Department – Quick Tips For Lash Strips

Now, if all the above it too much for you, you can always go to the MAC counter and ask them to apply lashes. I think they charge $10, which is completely reasonable.

So. I had planned to film a tutorial for you guys of me putting on lashes…. but after 30 minutes of doing nothing but gluing my own lashes together and saying bad words, I gave it up. I think I could apply lashes just fine to someone else, but myself – not so much.

Do you wear false lashes? Do you have any tips for application?

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Beautorial: Highlighter

Happy Saturday friends!

I promised you two new tutorials this week and this one is your second. I think highlighting is one of the easiest, most impactful things you can do (makeup wise) to really perfect your skin and make you look radiant. Any age, any skin type, any skin color can benefit from highlighting.

For the record, you may hear the word “luminizer” when talking about highlighting. It’s a fancier way to say highlighter. Ha!

I don’t usually care for Kimmy, but this is a great example of where you should apply highlighter: cheekbones, center of forehead, center of nose, bow of the upper lip, and chin.

I don’t wear highlighter every single day, but it is great for days when you are feeling tired or blah. Mix a tiny amount of liquid highlighter into your foundation for extra glow. When I have a date night or other special night out, I will go to town with highlighter for a “glowy” look.

Check out my video for more tips and tricks! 

Highlighters that I love and recommend:

Thank you for reading and watching!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Beautorial: How To Tightline Your Eyes


Tightlining is one of those hidden gems that I think not enough people utilize, either because they don’t know what it is, they think it is too hard to do, or they just don’t know how to do it. Well, today’s the day, ladies. Today is the day you learn to tightline.

Tightlining is a method of lining your eyes. When most people think of lining their eyes, they think of lining above their lashes. You may have heard of “lining your waterline” which is not tightlining. The waterline is the area in between your lashes and eyeball. Let’s consult a picture, shall we?


When you are instructed to “line your waterline” that simply means to line the inner rims of your eyes with a waterproof liner.

Today we’re talking about tightlining – which is coming from underneath your lashes with liner to line your eyes. I know it sounds confusing if you’re never heard of it or seen it done. I promise the video explains exactly how to do this technique.

Why tightline?

  • It provides a natural look. You don’t appear to be wearing liner, which can be harsh looking on some people.
  • It really makes your lashes look fuller.
  • If provides an extra “oomph” when worn with a smoky eye.

What should you use to tightline your eyes?

  • I use a waterproof pencil. If using a pencil, I recommend one that is both waterproof and firm, such as MAC Technakohl. That’s what I’m using in the vlog.
  • You can use a cream liner, such as MAC Fluidline. Use a flat top eyeliner brush to apply and “push” the cream liner into the base of your lashes.
  • When removing your liner, you’ll need to use a waterproof eye makeup remover. I recommend an oil based makeup remover, such as Clinique Take The Day Off. Saturate a pad with remover and let it rest on your eye for a few seconds. Then wipe off your mascara and liner. The liner will collect under your eyes… press the pad to that area and gently wipe. You’ll have to do this again the morning.

A few thoughts before you watch this video…

This is my first actual tutorial, so think kind thoughts. I hope I only get better from here. I had my husband in the bathroom with me while I was filming, and he was supposed to tell me if I went out of the frame. Um, he didn’t, and there are several times you see me pop out of view when I’m looking in the mirror. I also have a bit of the crazy eye as I apply my liner. Oops. Lastly, that swatch has been on the wall for over a year. HA!

Will you try tightlining?

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Say Yes to Great Hair!

Hey friends!

I’m so excited to share some big news with you guys. If you’ve been reading the blog, you know that a few weeks ago I asked you to please vote for me to become the next Yes To Stylista.

I know some of you are wondering… what is Yes To Stylista? Well, one of my favorite skincare companies, Yes To Carrots, has created a contest to find their next Stylista – a beauty maven who will work with the company as a brand representative.

When I found out about the contest, I knew immediately I wanted to enter. I use and love the Yes To Carrots products. Y’all know I have professed my love of the Yes To Cucumbers Hypoallergenic Facial Towelettes, and I bathe Cooper with the Yes To Baby Carrots line.

Well, thanks to you guys, I made it into the Top 10 and the next round of the contest! Thank you so much for voting for me, readers! It really means so much to me.

Yes To Carrots sent me a great big box filled with samples of their new hair care line, and I was tasked with trying the products and sharing my thoughts. I was asked to film a 2 minute vlog to share why I think I should be the next Yes To Stylista and what I think of Yes To Carrot’s new hair care line. Check it out and let me know what you think!

Now 2 minutes simply wasn’t enough time to share all my thoughts about this amazing new line of products, so I wanted to share more of my initial thoughts with you guys. I will be updating you as I use the products long term!

There are three sets of shampoos and conditioners, a leave in conditioner, and an anti-frizz serum.

I was most excited to try the Yes To Cucumbers Color Protection shampoo and conditioner. This is a sulfate free shampoo and conditioner that is free of parabens, petroleum, and SLS. I do color my hair, and I’m always on the search for a shampoo and conditioner that won’t strip my hair. There is nothing worse than paying big bucks at the hair salon and seeing your color fade weeks before it should.

Now, I am only on the first week of use of these products, but I feel pretty positive about it! I will be sure to update as to what the long term impact is on my hair color, but my initial thoughts are extremely positive. I love that although this shampoo is sulfate free, it still suds up pretty well. I’m just the type of person who wants that feeling of suds in my hair to know it is getting clean. The conditioner was lightweight but did not leave my hair tangled.

Next is the Yes To Blueberries Healthy Hair Repair shampoo and conditioner. Now, I have only used this shampoo and conditioner once because right now the Color Protection line is the most appropriate product to meet my hair cleansing needs. However, I really love this shampoo and conditioner! I can see myself switching back and forth between the two lines.

The Healthy Hair Repair set is perfect for those of us who heat style our hair or who might have damage to or breakage of our strands. The blueberries contain antioxidants that protect hair, clover flower heals damage, and sunflower provides fatty acids that will restore shine.

One shampoo left my hair feeling very soft and moisturized. After air drying, my hair was very shiny. Plus, the scent is amazing and lingered all day!

I had my husband try out the Yes To Carrots Scalp Relief shampoo and conditioner. Jason has a very dry scalp (he said I wasn’t allowed to use the “D” word). His scalp feels dry, so he scratches his head often during the day… which just further accelerates the problem. I thought this set would be perfect for his needs.

This shampoo and conditioner is meant for those with dry scalps. Tea tree and lemon protect against irritation, and salicylic acid reduces flakes. Cypress oils moisturize while organic carrots heal the scalp and stimulate the growth of healthy hair. Yes To Carrots Scalp Relief shampoo and conditioner advertises that it will '”soothe dry, flaky scalps in 7 days.”

In 10 years of marriage, Jason has never commented on any shampoo I’ve ever purchased for him. I buy the shampoo, stick it in the shower, and he uses it. I replaced his shampoo with the Yes To Carrots Scalp Relief set, and he commented on how his scalp didn’t feel as dry the first day of use. He’s continued to use it daily, and has said that his hair feels soft, his scalp doesn’t itch, and he hasn’t seen any flakes since he first started using it. I call that a win!

I think the next two products work best in conjunction with one another. The Yes To Carrots Leave In Conditioner is great for those of us who need a little extra moisture in our hair. The mixture of protein and argan oil both heals and protects your hair. I love that this product contains argan oil! I normally apply argan oil before styling, but with this leave in conditioner I can skip that step. After using this product, my hair dried faster, was shinier, and felt super soft to the touch.

The Yes To Carrots Anti Frizz Serum is so amazing. I really don’t have words to express how much I love this serum. I have naturally wavy hair (which is a nice way of saying my hair is super frizzy and coarse). I haven’t yet found a anti frizz serum that will allow me to feel comfortable wearing my hair natural. When I air dry my hair, I always end up either flat ironing or pulling my hair back into a ponytail or bun. This serum eliminates my frizz and leaves me with soft, shiny hair! I use it both when I wear my hair wavy and when I heat style.

My favorite way to use these two products is to combine equal amounts in my palm and run through towel dried hair. This leaves me with the most soft, shiny, perfect hair of my life!

Need proof? Check out these good hair days!

2PicMonkey Collage

To summarize, here are my favorite things about the new Yes To Carrots hair care line of products:

  • The three sets of shampoos and conditioners can meet pretty much anyone’s hair care needs.
  • The Color Protection line does not contain sulfates.
  • All shampoos and conditioners are free of parabens, petroleum, and SLS.
  • The products are very affordable. You can get both a shampoo and conditioner for less than $16.00.
  • The products are easy to find at your local drugstore or Target.
  • The products smell pleasant but are not overbearing.
  • All the products left my hair soft, tangle free, and shiny.
  • Because Yes To Carrots products are natural, I feel good about using them on both myself and my child.

So friends – will you be trying out any of these products? Do you feel I’d be a good brand representative for Yes To Carrots?

Leave your thoughts in the comments, please!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Whip It Up: Homemade Lip Exfoliator


Now that we’re moving into the cooler months, it is even more important to make sure we are exfoliating both our bodies and faces to get rid of dry, scaly skin. One area that can sometimes be overlooked is our lips! Dry lips are no one’s friend. Try this scrub and be amazed at how soft your lips feel. Your gloss and lipstick will apply like a dream!

You can also make up larger amounts of this scrub and keep it in your shower for use as a body scrub.

You probably have all these ingredients at home!



This would keep for about a week in your fridge. Store it in tupperware, canning jars, or even (clean) baby food containers!

Whip it up!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

How To Get a Professional Manicure at Home

I’ve had quite a few people ask me if I’d be willing to talk about how I do my nails at home. I haven’t paid for a manicure in quite some time. (My toes are a different story!) I actually prefer doing my nails at home – I think I do a better job than some of the manis I’ve gotten at nail salons!


I paint my nails at least once a week, sometimes twice. I find it really relaxing. It’s something I enjoy doing while watching TV as a way to wind down from my day.

For specific steps on how to prepare your nails for polish, please check out this guest post by my friend Holly, a certified nail tech. Since Holly’s already discussed the steps you should take to get a great looking manicure at home, I’m going to focus on the products I use and some tips I have to make the process easier on you.

Remove polish. I prefer to use pure Acetone remover, although it can dry out your cuticles. I’d rather moisturize my cuticles than spend 15 minutes trying to get off my polish with a non-Acetone remover.

Next I apply Sally Hansen Instant Cuticle Remover to my cuticles. I let it sit about 30 seconds and then start to push back my cuticles with an orange wood stick. I lightly scrape the surface of my nail and go underneath the tips of my nails to clean out any dirt as well.

Next I wash my hands and if my hands are feeling rough, I use a homemade scrub consisting of white sugar and olive oil.

Next I apply CND Solar Oil to my cuticles – I spend about 5 minutes really working the oil into my cuticles and the surface of my nails. I really believe this helps my nails grow strong. I top it all off with a thick hand cream.

I usually do all this while Cooper is playing in the bathtub, and then polish my nails once he has gone to bed.

Tip: before you polish, soak a cotton pad in rubbing alcohol and wipe down the surface of your nail. This removes any oils from your nail, which can cause your polish to wear or chip sooner.

Now it’s time to polish your nails!

Step one is the Orly Bonder base coat. This is my current favorite base coat.

The next step is to polish your nails. Now, the pros will tell you to apply thin coats. Whenever I try to apply thin coats my polish looks streaky. So I just load up my polish brush and go to town. I usually apply two coats of polish unless the polish I’m using needs extra coats.


Tip: Here’s my secret for cleaning polish off my cuticles. While my nails are still wet, I run the tip of the orange wood stick around my cuticles, removing excess polish. It really cleans up my nails and makes them look sharp!

My favorite top coat is INM Out The Door. It’s a dupe of Seche Vite, minus all the nasty chemicals. My nails are hard and dry to the touch within 10 minutes.

I’ve seen quite a few pins lately on Pinterest talking about how you should apply Vaseline or Aquaphor to your cuticles as a way to “get a perfect manicure!” No. Don’t do this. There is no way to apply Vaseline or the like to the cuticle without getting it on your nail bed. Any oil whatsoever will keep the polish from adhering to your nail.

The last step in any manicure is to clean up your cuticles. Y’all, please take 5 seconds and clean up your cuticles. I’d rather see bare nails any day than girls who polish their nails yet leave polish smudges all over their cuticles and fingers.

There are 2 ways to do this… if you have time, polish at night and go to bed afterwards. When you wake up, scrub your cuticles in the shower with a washcloth. This will remove most of the polish from your cuticles. I know that in the mornings I will be too rushed to remember to do that, so I clean up my cuticles at night.

I love pointed q-tips for this purpose. They really get around your nail without accidentally removing the polish on your nail. These q-tips are from Amazon, but I get mine from CVS.

What are your tips for awesome looking manicures at home?

Monday, October 22, 2012

My Makeup Icons

A few months ago, I was browsing through the channels on a Saturday while Cooper was napping, and I happened upon the movie Sucker Punch. Now, normally this isn’t the kind of movie I’d ever sit down and watch, but I was immediately drawn in by the makeup. Hands down, I think this is the best makeup artistry of any movie I’ve seen.

I found the blog of the makeup artist and read up on the products she used on the actresses. The best part of the look is the shimmer on the cheekbones, which I was disappointed to find was a custom mixture she created. BOO. I would have whipped out my credit card in a snap if it had been sold in stores. She also layered false lashes to get the major wow factor on the eyes.

I love Adele’s look. It’s so classic and old Hollywood. I love that she never really changes it up – even if she makes small tweaks, it is always thick black liner, flawless foundation, and major lashes. For performances, she wears 2-3 pairs of false lashes at one time.

Oh Lauren. Me love you long time. She also has a very classic look – bronzed skin and cat eye liner. She is flawless!

I appreciate Katy Perry’s outrageous sense of style. She always does it up. I really want her makeup artist to show me how he applies her foundation, because in her documentary she went makeup-less and she does not have the flawless skin you think she does.

Hayden Panettiere always has the most incredible shimmer to her face. Obviously I’m obsessed with shimmer.

Who are your celebrity makeup icons?

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Favorite This: Hair Tutorials

I shared with y’all last week my love for all things YouTube. I swear, you can go on there and learn to do just about anything. These days, I spend more of my time on YouTube watching hair tutorials. Here are some of my favorites!

If you are a Southern girl, you need to know how to “poof” your hair. I confess, I’m all thumbs when it comes to poofing. Pink Lou Lou came to the rescue!

I also cannot for the life of me figure out how to get a poofy ponytail. I’m 100% serious when I say that I watch Kate’s video at least once a week. I’m getting there, but my pony still isn’t poofy enough for me.

Jason teases me mercilessly for watching this video, but it is the only video that taught me how to rope braid. I am embarrassed that a teenager taught me to braid. Ha!

This is a great video on how to blow dry your hair with a round brush.

If you have short hair and/or bangs, you need to watch this video. This gives you so many examples on how to style your bangs.

What’s your source for hair tutorials?

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Braided Bangs

Normally on Saturdays I post vlogs for you guys, but this has been a crazy week and I just didn’t have time to film. So today we’re going to be talking about one of my favorite ways to deal with 3 day old hair – braided bangs!



I wore this hairstyle at least once a week this summer. Summer is over, true, but braided bangs can still be a great fall hairstyle!

I won’t lie; it took me forever and a day to get the braiding down pat. All I can say is practice, practice, practice. Once you get it down, you can get your hair fixed in 5 minutes.

Here are two different methods for french braiding your bangs:

This video shows you how to do a dutch braid, which is where you add hair from underneath rather than from the top.

This video shows you how to do a rope braid – a little tricker, but it looks awesome with wavy hair.

I hope this helps! I’ll have 2 vlogs for you next week, I hope!

Friday, October 19, 2012

Exfoliation 101

Happy Friday, friends! This is an older post (March 2009) that I’ve updated and am re-posting.

Exfoliation is a super important step in your skincare regimen. The simple act of washing your face is not enough to remove the top layer of skin, which is made up of dead epidermis cells. When you exfoliate, you are ridding that layer of skin and exposing newer and fresher cells. I wanted to share with you a variety of ways to add exfoliation into your daily routine, from super cheap to super expensive.

Baking soda is an easy, inexpensive way to exfoliate. If you use a cream based cleanser, add a tiny sprinkle of baking soda when you wash your face. You can also add a little bit of water to the baking soda, creating a paste, and massage into your skin.

Cost: less than $1.00

Did you know that microfiber washcloths are a great for exfoliation? The structure of the microfiber traps dirt and dead skin and lifts it up and away from your skin. I recommend the Jane Iredale Magic Mitt.

If that is out of your budget, try Scotch-Brite Microfiber Cloths, found at Wal-Mart or Target. Warning: DO NOT rub your face vigorously with these cloths. Using too much pressure can lead to facial burns.

Cost: $15

You can also use exfoliating scrubs. I ordered a full size of the Befine Exfoliating Cleanser after receiving a sample in my Birchbox. It’s a great product that both cleanses and exfoliates your skin. I also love both the Mary Kay TimeWise Microdermabrasion Set and the Philosophy Microdelivery Exfoliating Wash.

Cost: $25-55

The three methods I’ve listed above are ways to physically exfoliate. Another option is a chemical exfoliant, such as AHAs or BHAs. These usually come in the form of a gel or cream that you apply after cleansing your skin.

AHA products are best used to treat skin damage, dry skin, and thick skin. Examples are lactic acid, malic acid, glycolic acid, and tartaric acid. Don’t be scared by the word acid – these are just products that penetrate the top layer of your skin, encouraging it to shed and reveal the new skin underneath.

I use and love the Peter Thomas Roth Max Complexion Correction Pads.

A drugstore option is Alpha Hydrox AHA Souffle. If you add one of these products to your routine, please follow the product directions as you will need to incorporate it into your routine slowly.

BHA products are recommended for those with blemishes and acne and come in the form of salicylic acid. An example of a salicylic acid product would be

Neutrogena’s Oil-Free Acne Wash or Clearasil Daily Clear Pore Cleansing Pads.

Cost: ranges from $7 to $36

The final tool for exfoliation that I would like to share with you is the Clarisonic Skin Cleansing System. No, I don’t get paid by Clarisonic. I’m not going to go in much detail here because I’ve talked this product to death on my blog. You can read my thoughts here, here, and here.


  • Easy to use – just add cleanser and use. It beeps to tell you to move to another area of your face.
  • It is very effective at removing makeup.
  • It does smooth your skin. If I skip a few days and go back to the Clarisonic, I can’t believe how soft and smooth my skin is.
  • I’ve seen a lightening and reduction in the brown spots on my skin.


  • It is expensive – aside from the price of the product, you pay $25 to replace the brush every 3-4 months.
  • It can be too rough for some skin.
  • The deep cleansing can dry out your skin. You’ll need to step up your moisturizing when you first start using this product.

You can also try some of the Clarisonic knockoffs. I have not personally tried these, but the Olay Pro-X Advanced Cleansing System & the Neutrogena Microdermabrasion System get decent reviews on Amazon.

Cost: $20 - $225 for the brush and an additional $25 for The Clarisonic brush heads

So that is my humble opinion about exfoliation in a nutshell.  If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments! Be sure to let me know what you think if you try any of this out!

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