Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving and Black Friday at Brija Cosmetics!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I hope you're having a great day with family and friends!

Brija Cosmetics

Friday 11/29 through Monday 12/2, 
get 30% off your order of $20 or more!
(Order must total $20 before using the code)

Use CODE 'FRIDAY2013' at checkout.

*FRIDAY ONLY - Orders totaling $40 or more will receive a 5g jar of Brija's new Chai Cupcake Bronzer (not yet listed).

(TAT is up to 2 weeks)

Moisturizing Lip Products!

Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Skincare for SD - What I've Tried

I just did a post (and video) talking about my 2 month Gluten/Dairy free experience in regards to my diet change and supplements I added. This is a collective list of all of the skincare products I've tried in the last 3 months. It may seem like a lot, and normally you should give products at least 2 weeks to see if they work for your skin, but I knew within 3 days if these products were working for my SD. I wanted to simplify my skincare routine heavily and use very natural products. 

In order of when I tried them:
Sibu Detox BarSoap (June-late August)
This was the first actual cleansing product I started using for my SD. It did make it better initially, but then gradually started being less effective. However, aside from my SD, it was breaking the rest of my face out.

Oatmeal Powder (Early September)
-I ground oats down to a powder, but it was still too rough and exfoliated my skin too much.

Apple Cider Vinegar Toner – ¼ ACV with filtered water
-Even watered down, this was too strong for my SD. I love ACV for my hair routine (LINK), but it did not help my face and really made me break out.

Osmia NutrientSerum – Started 9/17 then stopped
-Plumped the skin at night and made my SD feel like real skin, but I didn't see a difference over the week I used it. Also started getting ‘Pilly’ during the day.

Dirty MadeClean Healing Salve – (Late September)
I thought this really would have been a difference in my SD because of the Sea Buckthorn, Tamanu, etc. It's not that this didn't work, but I did notice my itching started to increase a little bit. I'll still use this sometimes periodically. I LOVE the packaging. 

Dr. Bronner's Peppermint + Tea Tree Castile Soap - (Early November)
-Peppermint and Tea Tree are natural antifungals, so I decided to try them. They are much too harsh for my skin, and the Tea Tree especially made my skin so incredibly itchy. I think my skin is too sensitive for TT. 

-I think this was harboring bacteria and it was much too much exfoliation for my SD on a daily basis. I threw it out recently.

Homemade Jojoba Oil blend with Oregano + Tea Tree 
-I made this blend myself, and I think the addition of the tea tree prevented it from helping my SD. Oregano is supposed to be great for it because of its antifungal properties.

Now, I'm Currently Using;

I went back to using Raw Honey on all parts of my face aside from the SD. I've read that honey has worked amazingly for some people's SD, but for mine is doesn't. When I was using the Sibu Bar Soap, my skin was constantly broken out for months. Honey is the only thing that keeps my acne at bay.

Fage 2% Greek Yogurt – 30 minutes
I read a blog post on how greek yogurt helped his dermatitis and decided to try it out. First time, right after – redness went done a lot. I'm still a little conflicted. It has been very calming on my skin, but I'm confused as to why I can put yogurt on my face but eating dairy makes my SD worse.

Trust Nature Oil for SD - (Early November)
This made a huge difference in the first week I used it, but now I feel it's working less and less. I still highly recommend it. 

Inesscents Jojoba Butter - (Late October)
-Only jojoba oil and shea butter
My skin started getting better immediately when I started using this. Before, I was just using oils to moisturize, including my well loved Sibu Sea Buckthorn Oil. I think my skin really needed moisture.

I still haven't found a miracle product, but I do think my skin largely depends on my diet and what I eat. Do you have sensitive skin? What are your favorite products for eczema or dermatitis?  

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Pumpkin + Poppy Cream Shadows


Left to Right:
My Precious
Ice Dance (Discontinued)
Divinely Happy
Beauty Sleep
Starman-below (Discontinued)

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Homemade Vegan Low Sugar Frosting!

             I've been loving these coconut flour cupcakes for the past few weeks, but I wanted to try some low sugar frosting on them. I couldn't find one I was happy with online, so I went to mixing and came up with this! It's vegan too! 

              It was a little too coconut-strong after I blended everything together without the raspberries, so I added them to add just a little fruity sweetness. Feel free to use any fruit you have! The fruit is the only substantial sugar in the icing. Feel free to add honey or stevia too!

Rough estimates (it's pretty forgiving, so you can mess around with the quantity):

1/4 cup Solid Coconut Oil
1/4 cup Unsweetened, shredded blended coconut (I used my magic bullet - it would probably work with regular!)
1 tbsp Unsweetened Almond Milk
3 tsp Vanilla Extract
6 Raspberries (or any fruit you want)

Makes enough for at least 7 cupcakes.

Blend together with a mixer and spoon/pipe on! 
I recommend keeping them in the fridge because coconut oil can melt! 

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

2 Months Gluten Free - My Experience

It has been two months since going Gluten and Dairy free, and boy has it been a roller coaster. For those of you that don't follow my youtube channel, I decided to go GF/DF after 6 months of struggling with Seborrheic Dermatitis and seeing it get increasingly worse. No skincare product I was using was helping, so I decided to take drastic action.

I love cupcakes. They are one of my favorite things in the entire world. And bagels. Oh my goodness. If you had asked me in June if I would go GF, I would have said 'No way, I love cake too much!' But that was before my skin got so bad I couldn't take it anymore. Deciding to give up my love for traditional sweets was challenging, and the first month of being GF was even more challenging with how emotional it was for me. My diet did a 360 in the first month and I not only went from not eating gluten or dairy products, but went to eating mostly vegetables and little to no sugar at all. 

I was fine the first two weeks, but after that, things went downhill. I still hadn't seen an improvement in my skin, and I thought for sure I would have. I started getting incredibly discouraged and decided to cut out all sugar for a few days. For those of you that don't know, Seborrheic Dermatitis can occur randomly because of a yeast overgrowth. To help eliminate the yeast, it's recommended to follow the Candida Cleanse, which cuts out gluten, dairy, and all sugar. I know when you eat healthier foods, you feel better, but I was miserable. I cried almost every day and I just wasn't happy. Part of this I definitely think was from the sugar withdrawal. I decided to introduce a little fruit back into my diet, and immediately I felt better. So, I definitely don't avoid it now. My body is fine with natural sugars, but my SD goes CRAZY with artificial sugars. (After Halloween, my skin was a nightmare for a few days after).

Along with being GF/DF, I introduced some supplements into my diet. I'm someone that doesn't like taking unnecessary pills unless I really should. I stopped taking a multivitamin earlier this year in order to find one that was had vitamins derived from whole foods. I found one and took it for a little but, but gradually stopped. 

On September 24th, I started taking Caprylic Acid (about 14 days after starting the GF diet). Caprylic Acid is a natural acid found in coconut oil. It is supposed to clear out the bad bacteria in your gut, and has notoriously helped SD sufferers. I read about the Yeast Die-Off side effects, but decided to try taking it anyway. The first week of taking the CA was awful. I experienced all of the symptoms of Yeast Die-Off - I was so tired, bloated, got hungry incredibly fast, got a fever on the 3rd day, and more. After a week the symptoms started to subside, and I haven't had any die-off symptoms since.

On October 8th I started taking probiotics, to introduce good bacteria back into my body and help balance my flora. I then started taking my Calcium pills again, with vitamin D3. If someone has low Vitamin D3 levels, it can make SD worse. To be honest, I'm not sure if taking these pills is making a difference in my face. A combination of everything I've been doing has been making it better, but not as well as I hoped it would look at this point.

I will admit I ate incredibly clean my first month of being GF. I still do eat clean compared to what I've eaten in the past 2 years, but I do let myself have more grains than I did the first month. I hardly eat anything from a box, and my body seriously loves me for it. I haven't had any stomach problems or stomach aches, and I used to get them frequently (I was already lactose intolerant). I don't feel sluggish during the day, or guilty after I eat. My diet consists of mostly eggs, arugula, homemade minestrone soap, homemade vegetable pizza, fruits, vegetables, and a decent amount of grains. I limit my caffeine now, and drink coffee only 1-2 times a week, and all my tea is caffeine free. And, only natural sugars. (Have you seen my favorite coconut flour cupcake recipe?!)

I have broken my diet and eaten gluten two times since going GF. I ate fried rice, totally forgetting that most soy sauce has wheat (Aaron and I get the GF one), and my SD swelled up for the following two days. My stomach also felt like a balloon was being blown up inside me. Then, in the beginning of October, I was at my Nana's house and decided to try my tolerance with some pasta she made. I ate 6 pieces, and the following week my SD was AWFUL. I used to think 'Oh, a little won't make a difference', but it really does. It introduces the gluten back into my body and it makes the process of fighting off the yeast gradually harder. My skin was incredibly itchy and red for days after.
Overall, although my SD is starting to spread because it's getting colder, it has definitely gotten better than before I went GF 2 months ago. It's been challenging, but I am also very lucky that my mom is GF and has been very supportive. We're making some great GF recipes for Thanksgiving!

Regarding skincare (hence why almost none of my videos lately have been on skincare), it's because I've been constantly changing my routine. The next post coming will be everything I've tried!

Are any of you GF/DF? Why did you decide to go GF/DF? Share some of your favorite recipes!

Monday, November 4, 2013

First Impression Entire Look: Honeybee Gardens + Oslo Cosmetics

Honeybee Gardens 

Pressed Mineral Foundation in 'Geisha' $7.99 - $10.99
I love the coverage and it doesn't make my face look cakey. I wish the ingredients were a little more natural, but the price for a natural pressed foundation is great!

'Black Magic' Mascara - $7.99 - $11.99
Very natural look - provides length and a little volume without the spidery look. My lashes did harden and feel crispy after it dried, but no flaking. I still like the PF Fake Out mascara more.

'Zen' Lip Liner - $5.79 - $8.99
Love! Love the color, the price, how it feels. Amazing - I'll definitely be getting more.

'Hollywood' Lip Gloss - $7.99 - $11.99
I love the smell and how it feels on the lips. I wish I didn't have to pump so many times to get the product out, though. Great price.

Oslo Cosmetics
Mini = $3.50, Full = $6.00

Since I got the formula without silicones, I do think that greatly effected how the shadows applied. The pigmentation is nice and the colors are gorgeous, but I don't like the fallout and they ended up creasing quite fast. I probably won't repurchase more. They also offer pressed shadows for $8!

Silk Naturals 'Beach Bunny' Bronzer - $6.50
I love it!! Definitely getting the full size.