VoxBox Review: L'oreal Elvive Revive Color Vibrancy Repair & Protect Balm

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Here's another awesome VoxBox I received to test and review complimentary from Influenster. It's from the brand L'oreal and it's a hair product. I was happy to be part of this Voxbox since I have a super long hair I need to take extra care of.

"Luxurious mask color for color damaged hair. In just 1 use repairs color treated hair. Deeply Nourishes"

That is the description in bold letters in L'oreal website. It claims to smooths and protects dry, damaged and color treated hair and repair visible damage from processing in just 1 use.

This comes in a red tub made out of thick plastic, like the standard container for most of the hair mask and creams in stores. I actually never noticed it yet at my local Walmart where I do most of my grocery shopping, so I am not sure if this is the packaging and container they use for retailing it. But this kind of container does not have any seal at all that seems to be a red flag since anyone can dip their fingers on itπŸ‘Ž But for me, the tub was hard to open the first time I tried.

The hair mask has a thick cream consistency like a body butter. Once I opened the tub I immediately smelled the combined fruity and flowery scent of the mask and I liked it. The smell was not too strong - just enough for my sensitive nose.

As for application, it was a no-brainer - quick and easy.You just have to apply it after shampooing, leave in for 3-5 minutes and rinse.  A little of this mask can go a long way but since I have a long and thick hair, I need more. It glides smoothly into my hair upon application. Recommended use is 1-2 times per week.

Like other hair masks I've tried, my hair felt soft and smooth after using it. I really love how it gave shine to my hair! It accentuated my colored-hair and gave it more vibrancy

The only thing I must complain about this mask is that it actually made my hair felt heavy the first time I used it and the scent does not really last long for me. But overall, I would say that this product is still worth a try!

Loving my hair!

Ratings: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Price: $6.99 at L'oreal's website

What's your favorite hair mask so far? Share it in the comments below!

Disclaimer: This product was sent to me complimentary by Influenster for testing purposes. But all opinions are my own.

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VoxBox Review: P2 Cosmetics Nail Polish

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Today is another VoxBox review for you all! As you may have already know, I love signing up to websites/platforms where I can receive free products to test and review. One of my favorite sites is Influenster. Not only I can voice out my opinion about the products I have already tried and connect to people that loves the same thing as I do, they also send box of products to the most active members and influensters. I am one of those blessed members that has been given the chance to received free products in a box called Voxbox, at least 5 already if I am not mistaken. 

In this blog post I am sharing with you my experience on my P2 Cosmetics Nail Polishes VoxBox.

When I was approved on this VoxBox, I was pretty excited since I love nail polishes! I was more thrilled when I received the VoxBox and saw that they did not only sent me one but 6 shades of nail polishes! What a generous box indeed!

This box comes with three different polishes - Volume Gloss Gel Look Polish (Guest Star, Princess, Geek Freak, Pure Woman), Nude Benefit Polish (Breakfast with Tiffany) and Techno Chrome Polish (Bronze Cut)

The Volume Gloss Gel Look Polish has a special plumping formula to create that ultimate ‘gel’ look. 'This polish is formulated for a long-lasting, high-gloss finish while providing high coverage and perfect color transfer. It includes a voluminizing fanning brush for perfect, fast results, as the brush fans out on the nail, permitting application in one brushstroke without streaking.'

The first one I've tried was the Volume Gloss Gel Look Polish in Guest Star with the Princess shade as an accent. Guest star is a deep red shade while Princess is like a powder/peach pink.

VerdictThe color payoff was great even with one coat! I love the glossy shine after application. However, it took only a day for it to begin chipping off. I cook and wash dishes every day so I guess this would not be for me.  But I really love the color. Maybe if I did a double or triple coat it could have last a little longer.

The second one I tried was the Nude Benefit in Breakfast with Tiffany and I paired it with the Volume Gloss Gel Look Polish in Geek Freak shade as an accent. The Breakfast with Tiffany shade is a lighter nude pink color while the Geek Freak shade is a dark violet one.

This nourishing nail polish is in trendy nude tones that offers the perfect match for any skin tone. This claims to surrounds your nail with a physical protective layer, evens out irregularities and conceals discoloration.

Verdict:  Unlike the Volume Gloss Gel Look Polish, this Nude Benefit Polish has a creamy and thick formula and one stroke is enough to fully and evenly cover the nails. I also love the opaque finish of this polish. However, this one too chipped super fast. It lasted only 2 days before it began chipping.

The last but definitely not the least was the Techno Chrome Polish in Bronze Cut. I paired it with the Volume Gloss Gel Lock Polish in Pure Woman as a top coat. I love the Rose Gold finish after application. Definitely my favorite among all others!

'This original polish features a metallic effect with a sleek finish that provides shimmering highlights in fashionable colors easy for everyday wear.'

Verdict: I love the creamy formula of this nail polish! Pure metallic shine and elegant-looking nail color. This is by far my most favorite color of all the P2 nail polishes. It last longer than the other colors too!

Conclusion:  Being a new brand, this line excels my expectation. The color payoff of all the shades was great! The brush applicator was really helpful in applying the nail polishes. I love that it dries quickly too! Also, for a very affordable price, you can choose from a variety of colors and it's available in your local Wal-Mart.

On the other hand, this is not something for a busy woman like me who uses her hand very often in doing house chores because it chipped easily and did not last long. 

Have you ever tried P2 Cosmetics Nail Polish before? What was your favorite shade? Tell us in the comment section below!

Disclaimer: These products were sent to me complimentary by Influenster for testing purposes. But all opinions are my own.

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Mediheal Dress Code Masks Review (Black & Violet)

Time for another mask review complimentary from Skin18! My Blogger Level is now 3, which means I was able to receive 3 masks. (Happy DanceπŸ’ƒπŸ˜)

I was sent this Mediheal Dress Code Masks in Violet and Black. Let me share you my experiences on both.

Let me start by saying that this line of masks from Mediheal made masking a lot more fun with its very unique and cute masquerade design!

I was sent two Dress Code Black masks and one Dress Code Violet mask. The first one I've tried was the Dress Code Black.

Dress Code Black - (Jewel Stone - Whitening Care)

✨Claims: Brighten and Whiten Skin

✨Main Ingredients: Niacinamide, pearl powder extract, sea buckthorn extracts and other natural herb oils.

✨Sheet Mask Details: As I have said, this mask was so fancy and festive! The masquerade design added to the fun of using this mask. Plus how cute are those small red stones?! The sheet mask fabric is relatively thick and easy to put on the face although the eye holes are quite big. But it definitely fits and adheres well. I can still actually sing while wearing itπŸ˜‚ It holds quite an essence which has a nice faint smell that does not linger.

✨My experience: I left it for about 30 minutes and it was still wet when I removed it. It absorbs pretty well but left my face tacky. Brightening wise, I was not impressed since I've tried a couple of masks before that has a more powerful brightening effect than this. But hands down to the hydration it gave my skin, I felt refreshed after a long day outside. 

✨Full Ingredients List: Water, Glycerin, Butylene Glycol, Sodium Hyaluronate, Hydrolyzed Collagen, Xanthan Gum, Carbomer, Tocopheryl Acetate, Disodium EDTA, Panthenol, Trehalose, Betaine, Sea Water, Bambusa Vulgaris Extract, Lilium Candidum Bulb Extract, Adansonia Digitata Leaf Extract, Opuntia Ficus-Indica Extract, Salvia Officinalis (Sage) Leaf Extract, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Flower Extract, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Extract, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract, Cymbopogon Schoenanthus Extract, Squalane, Punica Granatum Fruit Extract, Ficus Carica (Fig) Fruit Extract, Morus Alba Fruit Extract, Ginkgo Biloba Nut Extract, Methylparaben, Portulaca Oleracea Extract, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Beta-Glucan, Allantoin, Triethanolamine, Polysorbate 80, Adenosine, Fragrance.

✨Price - $20.99 - 10 pcs/pack at Amazon

Dress Code Violet - (Berry - Tone-Up Care)

✨Claims: Skin Toning, Revitalizing and Moisturizing

✨Main Ingredients: Hyaluronic Acid, several high-quality berry oils and extract that effectively brighten and revitalize the skin. 

✨Sheet Mask Details: This mask has a cute masquerade design too but unlike the Dress Code Black, this one has no stones accent to it. The scent was nice but doesn't last long. I love the details of this fun to use masquerade masks by #mediheal

✨My Experience: I left this for more than 30 minutes when it almost dry. I like how it instantly lighten my skin tone. My face looks so fresh and moisturized. It left my skin looking smooth and soft.

✨Full Ingredients List: Water, Glycerin, Butylene Glycol, Sodium Hyaluronate, Hydrolyzed Collage, Xanthan Gum, Carbomer, Tocopheryl Acetate, Disodium EDTA, Panthenol, Trehalose, Betaine, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Extract, Opuntia Ficus-Indica Extract, Vaccinium Angustifolium (Blueberry) Fruit Extract, Euterpe Oleracea Fruit Extract, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Flower Water, Hamamelis Virginlana(Witch Hazel) Extract, Punica Granatum Fruit Extract, Ficus Carica Citrifolia Extract, Punica Granatum Fruit Extract, Ficus Carica (Fig) Fruit Extract, Morus Alba Fruit Extract, Ginkgo Biloba Nut Extract, Methylparaben, Portulaca Oleracea Extract, Beta-Glucan, Allantoin, Triethanolamine, Polysorbate 80, Adenosine, Fragrance

$19.39 - 10 pcs/pack at Amazon

I really enjoyed using these two Mediheal Dress Code Masks! How about you? Have you ever tried any of these masks? Share your experience below!

Disclaimer: This product was sent to me complimentary by Skin18 as part of their Reviewer/Blogger Program for testing and reviewing purposes. All opinions are my own.
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How I Got Rid of My Acne Breakouts: My Differin Gel Acne Treatment Journey

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

As an adult in her late 20s (almost 30), the last thing I wanted to have other than an aging skin is a face with breakouts.

But it was inevitable with this changing weather and all such factors. Fortunately, I was chosen for a Smiley360 mission to try the most talk about over-the-counter acne treatment - Differin Gel Adapalene Gel 0.1% Acne Treatment for 60 days. I was sent a full-size 45 g tube that can be used up to 90 days. 

So what is this Differin Gel Adapalene Gel 0.1% Acne Treatment?

It's an oil-free and fragrance-free acne treatment that contains Retinoid Adapalene. It used to be an acne treatment prescription for more than 20 years but was approved by the FDA  for over-the-counter used without prescription in 2016. It is the first and only OTC product to contain a full prescription-strength, acne-fighting retinoid — adapalene. 

And what is this Adapalene ingredient?

As you may have noticed, Differin Gel's main active ingredient is Adapalene. It is a kind of retinoid specifically used for clearing acne. It treats acne deep in the pores at the source, prevents new acne from forming and restores the skin's natural texture and skin tone.

How long does Differin Gel take to work?

Differin Gel starts working immediately and results will be seen within 2 to 3 weeks. This acne treatment requires commitment and long-term relationship. It may take some time to see significant results but the key is to stick with it. With continued use, you will definitely see the notable results! To give you an idea, it has been proven from a clinical study that patients reported a nearly 60% average decrease in acne after 12 weeks of use.

Are there any known side effects?

Although Adapalene is known to be the most gentle among other retinoids, you may still experience dryness, redness, irritation and burning/stinging (I felt the stinging and experienced the dryness for about 2 weeks). But these are all part of the retinization - where your skin is trying to adapt to the retinoid. The irritation usually lessens after four weeks of continued use. So do not give up! Just stick to it and your skin shall be rewarded after. It is also good to note that not all experience retinizaton - how fortunate these souls are.

How to use Differin Gel?

Differin Gel should only be used once a day - preferably at night. You only need a pea-sized amount to apply to your face.

Unlike spot treatments, this gel is meant to be applied to the entire face. To make it easier to cover the entire face using this small amount of product, I found it useful to dab tiny amount of the product to my cheeks, forehead, and chin, then spread it evenly to my entire face.

My Experience with Differin Gel

Let me begin by showing you how my skin looks like before using the Differin Gel.

A little gross, right? This was really a bad breakout for me since I usually have a nice smooth skin. Noticed that I have tiny bumps spread all over my right cheeks and some big chunks on my left and forehead too! Not a happy face at all.

Then I began using Differin Gel at the beginning of October 2016. It is usually a 3-step process: Cleanse, Treat and Moisturize. But I do add some steps in between.😊First, it is important to use a gentle, non-drying cleanser when using this product, so long before I received the product, I did some research for a perfect mild cleanser to pair it with. Differin gel actually offers a Balancing Cleanser and a Balancing Moisturizer, however, I read not-so-good reviews about them so I refrain from using both. I decided to go with Cerave Hydrating Facial Cleanser, it's fragrance-free, non-drying and non-irritating. And it did work well with Differin Gel. After cleansing, I use the Mario Badescu Aloe Vera Toner. It is also gentle, alcohol and fragrance-free that is ideal for a dry or sensitive skin. Since using Differin Gel makes the skin drier than usual, this toner is also a perfect match with Differin Gel. Then I apply a moisturizer as a buffer and to reduce irritation. I used e.l.f. Daily Hydration Moisturizer - a lightweight and nourishing moisturizer. It is not required to apply a moisturizer before applying the Differin Gel, it was my own way of making sure I do not get the irritation at it's best which for me actually worked out. After my moisturizer, I will finally apply the acne treatment. In the first week, I only used the Differin Gel every other night to build up my skin's tolerance and to slowly adapt to the new acne treatment. After the acne treatment application, I then moisturized again with my e.l.f. Daily Hydration Moisturizer. However, in the past couple of weeks, I tried different moisturizer (some PRs and free) which I believe work well too. I am currently using Swanicoco Life Time Saver Bio Cream (which I received as one of the products in my Swanicoco PR package) as a moisturizer and the final step of my night time skincare routine.

Surprisingly, I did not see any side effects on my first week of using the Differin Gel but instead, I noticed that my skin was loving it and the pimples on my face were drying fairly quickly.

After the first week, I started using the Differin Gel every night. Then my face became a little sensitive. Some products will make my face suffer from a tingling effect when applied to my face and I started to notice that more acne is coming out. This did not worry me since I know that the treatment is beginning to work on the surface of my skin to reduce the acne-causing clogs and it will subside after using it continuously for 2 more weeks.

See my results of using Differin Gel for the first 2 weeks below:

My breakouts are still clearly visible but the pimples are drying slowly. I continued my routine while trying to minimize the use of other new skin care products and makeups too. But from time to time I incorporate my masking addiction to my routine - after applying the Differin Gel and before my final moisturizer. I even joined a November masking challenge which I think my skin loved!πŸ˜€πŸ˜

So after 4 weeks (a month) of using Differin Gel, below is a comparison result:

A huge difference indeed! I still have pimples coming out every now and then but they are tiny, unlike the big, painful ones I used to have in the before photo. You can clearly see that my breakout was finally tamed.

After the 60-day Differin Gel challenge, the results are in. And here's mine:

Yay for the amazing results! I still continue regularly using the product and I am not planning on stopping it as it is truly effective in keeping my acne at bay. Here are some photos from December of my current skin state:

And here's the most recent photos taken just a few days ago:

I still have pimples coming out every once in a while, especially when I have my monthly period (like now), but I can confidently say that I do not have any more breakouts since I started using Differin Gel continuously. The only left to treat now are my annoying acne scars. They are still visible and looks like pimples in the photos.😩

Overall, I am convinced that I found my holy grail. And this thing is very affordable retailing at $28.88 for the 90-day supply tube and $10.88 for the 30-day supply at Wal-Mart. This is also available to all your local stores such as Target, Walgreens, and CVS. My journey on getting rid of my breakouts finally came in to close. But my journey to a healthier skin is still on-going.

Some takeaways:

  • always choose a gentle cleanser
  • do not use more than one acne treatment product. Differin Gel works better if used alone.
  • avoid products containing alpha hydroxy acid or glycolic acid as it may worsen the irritation.
  • always use SPF if you are going to be exposed to sunlight.

How about you? Have you found your perfect match in terms of treating your acne? Share your thoughts in the comment section below!

Disclaimer: I received this product complimentary from Smiley360 to test and review but this article in no way sponsored by Smiley360 or by the brand. All opinions are my own and based on my personal experience.
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