My skin care routine

skin care products

After going through the whole African black soap frenzy 😀 , i decided to start following a simple skin care routine that i could actually keep up with. I follow these 3 basic steps twice a day.

1) Cleanse
I use the African black soap and the Eden face & body scrub to clean my face. The scrub doubles up as a deep cleanser and it is gentle enough for everyday use. I use one product in the morning and the other in the evening.

African black soap

Apricot scrub

2) Tone
Rosewater is what i like to use for this step. I initially bought it for my hair but later decided to use it on my skin. I use a cotton pad to get it all over my face. Toners help get rid of any leftover residue from cleansers and in doing so, balance out the skins’ pH.

toner

3) Moisturize
I’ve been using a moisturizer by La fresha Beutisa for a few months now, but i recently bought the Simple kind to skin hydrating light moisturizer. Both products are light and non-greasy.

moisturizers

Every few days i like to follow up the cleansing step with a mask treatment (right before toning and moisturizing). I leave the mask on for approximately 10 minutes. I use pure honey for that although i recently bought a volcanic mud mask. A day after buying it, i saw an organic mint mask and bought it too. It says organic but its not a natural product. I only bought it because it says mint 😀 Both products are also from La fresh Beutisa.

Face masks

honey

Any suggestions on a good SPF product?

 

EDITED TO ADD: I don’t use ‘Rosewater’ or any of the ‘La fresh beautisa’ products anymore. I also don’t use the face scrub daily. My new routine is simply to cleanse (African black soap) and moisturize (Simple kind to skin hydrating light moisturizer). I don’t use a toner. (24.08.2014)

Finally, a hair update :D

Am 8 Weeks 3 days post relaxer today!

My hair blog is turning into a skincare, health drinks, fitness, random-talk blog 😮 Anyway…here is a quick hair update.

My hair today. I let it airdry in that ponytail

My hair today. I let it air-dry in that ponytail

I washed my hair this morning because i’ve been sweating a lot from working out – used Suave shampoo and Enliven conditioner. Washing it once a week is not going to work anymore so i need to tweak my hair regimen once again.

Am in that small percentage of people who like to shampoo their hair. I do it weekly. I’ve also done it biweekly alternating between a sulfate and sulfate-free shampoo. Shampoo, as you should know by now is quite drying for the hair and as such should not be used frequently. Having said that, i love that clean feeling i get when i shampoo my hair.

Cowashing (washing hair with just conditioner) doesn’t seem to be doing it for me anymore. I’ll have to give it another go though because i can’t be shampooing my hair twice a week.

Thats all for now 😀

__________________________________________________________________

I have quite a number of requested posts to put up. Bear with me guys, they’ll be up soon. Thanks for your continuous support, i really i appreciate it.

Oil Cleansing Method

OCM

I have mentioned the oil cleansing method (OCM) in several posts and most recently here. I decided to put together this post for anyone who might not have any idea what OCM is. Its also for anyone seeking more information on OCM. And if you’re looking for an effective natural way to cleanse your skin, then stick around too 🙂

What is OCM?
The oil cleansing method is exactly what it sounds like: using oils to clean your face. Natural oils. This may seem counter intuitive since we almost always want to wash our face once it gets oily. Its almost like we’ve been conditioned to believe that oil on the face is a big No No.

Why oil is important
The skin naturally produces oil (sebum) because it needs it. Sebum helps lubricate, heal, protect and moisturize the skin thus enabling it to function properly.

Oil alone will not cause blemishes. Pimples, cysts and blackheads are the results of several different factors including diet, hormones, bacteria, dead skin cells, and sebum that builds up and clogs the pores.

How does it work?
The oil cleansing method is actually quite straight forward. It works under the concept that oil dissolves oil. This means that what you are basically doing is using your oil of choice to dissolve the oil (sebum) on your skin and in the pores and then drawing it out while simultaneously replacing the dirty oil with clean oil that is actually beneficial to your skin.

Most commercial face washes and cleansers tend to strip the skin of its natural oils leaving it tight and dry. The skin then naturally tries to repair itself by producing even more oil than before in an effort to replace the oil thats been stripped away.

Which oils do you need?
You will need two oils, the first being Castor oil. This oil has been found to be both healing and cleansing. It also has anti-inflammatory properties. Castor oil has been said to leave the body in better condition than it found it. However, please note that little bit of Castor Oil goes a long way and too much will leave you with dry skin.

Due to its thickness and strong cleansing properties, castor oil needs to be diluted using a 2nd (thinner) oil. The oil blend that results sinks into the skin better.

Why not just use castor oil alone. Or the second (thinner) oil on its own?
1) Like i said, castor oil on its own is too strong a cleanser. It needs to be dissolved in another oil first.
2) Castor oil is an astringent and as such has been known to draw out/pull impurities from the skin onto the surface where they can be wiped away.

There are those that claim that using coconut oil alone has worked for them. Others say it is comedogenic meaning that it may possibly clog your pores. Others have an issue with olive oil. To each his own right?

Oil blends
To create your own blend, you first need to determine your skin type. Those with dry skin will need less castor oil in their blend than those with oily skin.

If you are a beginner, you can follow these guidelines and later adjust them according to your skins’ needs.

Oily Skin: Try a blend of 30% Castor Oil to 70% 2nd Oil.
Normal Skin: Try a blend of 20% Castor Oil to 80% 2nd Oil.
Dry Skin: Try a blend of 10% Castor Oil to 90% 2nd Oil.

The 2nd oil can be Jojoba oil (the best choice since it mimics sebum), Sweet almond oil, Grapeseed oil, Avocado oil, Sunflower Seed oil, Olive oil, Argan oil, etc. Its entirely up to you.

How do you do it?
Starting with a dirty face (no need to clean it first or remove your makeup) pour a little amount of oil on your palm. Rub your hands together then gently but deeply massage your face until its saturated with the oil. Do this for a minute or two.

Next take a clean face cloth, soak it in hot water (not too hot that it burns), wring it and place it on your face. Leave it there till it cools down. Mild steam can help soften hardened oil in pores.

The third step is to wipe the oil away using the cloth. You will find that the oil removes all of your makeup. Repeat these steps 2-3 times and you’re done!

Results

Now you might think that this will leave your skin all greasy but thats not the case. Instead you will have dewy-looking skin that is not greasy at all. Your skin will feel really soft, fresh and clean.

This is usually done at night ’cause who has time in the morning for this routine right? You will not feel the need to apply anything else on your face afterwards which is okay since you’ll be heading to bed anyway.

Follow this routine consistently and the result will be beautiful, clear, glowing skin that is free of blackheads, pimples and cysts.

Pros?
Its all natural
Its cheap
Doesn’t strip the skin of oils
great as a makeup remover!

Cons?
Its time consuming. I’ve tried the oil cleansing method but i just can’t seem to stick this routine.

NB:
The first few days after starting the OCM, your skin might seem oiler than ever! Don’t be alarmed though. Your skin is just purging all the impurities. It will normalize and give you that beautiful skin OCM promises.

OCM should be done regularly but not too frequently. If your skin seems to be getting drier and drier, take a break from this cleansing method.

My ‘tea’ collection

Tisane

1) Green tea 2) Hibiscus 3) Chamomile 4) Nettle 5) Rooibos 6) Peppermint

Am a tea drinker. Like most Kenyans, i have to have tea at breakfast time and in the late afternoon. The true kind, not these fancy herbal stuff 😀 I prefer brewed (loose-leaf) tea over the bagged kind. I recently started drinking herbal teas (just experimenting) and will probably stick to just one type in the end.

tea

Tea

Tea

Here is an interesting fact, “herbal teas” are not actually teas. Yep. “True teas” are made from the same plant – Camellia sinensis. What we commonly refer to as herbal teas are actually tisanes, otherwise known as infusions or decoctions. These ones don’t come from the aforenamed plant.

True teas include; Black, Oolong, Green, and White teas. Tisanes on the other hand include; Rooibos, Chamomile, Peppermint, Hibiscus,…

Updates | Very random updates

Hair update: I’ll be 7 weeks post relaxer tomorrow!

This stretch has been quite boring. My hair has been in a single braid for the better part of the past month and in as much as i like being able to (sometimes) go for up to a week without combing my hair while its in that style, its time to do something else.

posting this pic yet again :/

posting this pic yet again :/

I haven’t been following my hair regimen to a T. I’ve been washing my hair every 3-10 days – sometimes skipping the deep conditioning step. I don’t even remember the last time i did an oil prepoo treatment ::sigh::

Fitness update: Truth be told, i suck at this whole fitness journey thing. I found a workout routine that i LOVE but i sometimes think the guy who devised it is trying to kill me…but i still love it – and him 🙂 . I have workout gear, meals all planned out – kind of…nothing fancy. I have everything i need…am just not disciplined enough i guess. I try to workout at least 3 times a week but i feel thats not good enough because i used to work out 6 days a week.

Working out is one sweaty affair

Working out is one sweaty affair

I know i can do better, so this is me just putting it out there that perhaps its time to make a change. Hopefully i’ll feel prompted to do the necessary. Besides, i have to admit i was a little bit jelly when i read about Lydz making progress on her journey 🙂 I want that too (minus the pigging out 😀 )

Not to worry, its not been all gloom and doom for me this past few weeks 😀 In fact, my focus seemed to have shifted to other things. Like learning more about skin undertones. Turns out i have cool (deep winter) undertones! This explains why am drawn to certain shades when it comes to clothes and makeup (read lipsticks).

I’ve also been thinking of revampimg my wardrobe. I can feel the cold/rainy weather creeping in an am not prepared for it. I especially need a good pair of shoes. What do you guys wear to work when it rains? You know how these Nairobi streets get.

Another thing i’ve been obsessing over; Herbal teas! Looks like am building a collection. How did i live without them??? You should start drinking some if you aren’t already.

Have i mentioned my love for tv shows before? No? Well then, i practically watch everything there is to watch (ok, not really but i follow a lot of series). Too bad most of them have come to an end and (for some) i have to wait till next year for their their return. Thats enough anxiety to give me an ulcer! I have decided to re-watch ‘Sartacus’ for the second time round.

spartacus

pic from web

pic from web

spartacus

That should help take the edge off for a while at least. If you have any idea where i can get the book, please let me know…

Speaking of books, i’ve been trying to finish up this Game of Thrones book…

a dance with dragons

Yes yes, Game of Thrones. What can i say, i love everything about the series. Am on the hunt for this one by the same Author…

The lands of ice & fire

Its basically maps of the lands described in the books. And yes, i’ll pay for that 😀 Okay. I’ll stop here with my ramblings.

One more thing, tomorrow is my birthday! Am so close to saying goodbye to my 20’s. Am that old 🙂 I’ll just keep telling myself that, “In the end, it’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.” Abraham Lincoln said that, not me. But it rings true.

Have a great Monday!

Am back :)

Hi guys! Sorry for the lack of posts. I can’t believe my last one went up before Easter! Eeek! I took some much needed time away from the blogosphere and during that time received some mail, comments and questions from you guys. I’ve replied back to all of you. Sorry for being super late with that. If you’ve contacted me and for whatever reason haven’t heard back from me, please let me know.

That aside, i hope you’ve all been well and that you’re enjoying your weekend. God bless!