St. Ives new Scrub-Free Exfoliating Pads. Are they hot or not?

I’ve been a die hard fan of St. Ives skincare products for I don’t know hooooow long. Even before I was a beauty blogger, I was hoarding St. Ives stuffs like it was a job. And ever since they started omitted harsh ingredients from their products, well, I love ‘em even more.

Good ole’ St. Ives has recently launched these Scrub-Free Exfoliating Pads and of course I’ll had to check ‘em out.

Peep the stats:

  • First mass-market brand exfoliating pads with alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs)
  • Formulated with 100% natural lactic acid
  • Only $4.99 and you get 60 pads
  • Exfoliates to reveal smoother, younger-looking skin in just 7 days

Well. These extreme claims of promising to provide younger-looking skin in just 7 days had me on my toes. I think I look like a youthful 27 years old but I’ll take 24-year old skin any day. :D I gave these pads a whirl for exactly 7 days and welllllll, they have their ups and downs.

For one, I LOVE the fact that you get 60 pads for under $5. That’s pretty dynamic considering you really only need 1 pad per cleaning. Now, if you use these TWICE a day then you’re average at least 60 a month which still isn’t that bad. I think these are ideal for traveling. You can just pop ‘em in a carry-on, suitcase or tote and you won’t have to worry about them spilling. Because I’m that nut that ALWAYS ends up spilling a face wash or shampoo in her luggage.

So yeah, portable and spill-proof products are definitely for me. On the downside, I’m not sure how effective these are at really cleansing the skin. Sure, they feel good but I didn’t get that streaky clean feeling I love to feel after washing my face. Oh! And I so think the product name is weird. When you think of exfoliating, you think of scrubbing beads or somethin’ like that, right? Well nope…the pads are smooth. It’s the ingredients that provide an exfoliating experience. But then it says scrub-free. Huh? So yeah, I get it, but I think the language may throw you off if you’re taking a quick glance of this in drugstores. Reading thoroughly is indeed fundamental.

Pro’s
-Affordable and easy to find
-It’s paraben-free

-They aren’t unscented but the light fragrance that they provide isn’t too overwhelming
-Pads are lint-free and smooth.
-One pad should be good enough for the face and neck.
-While you may want to use a makeup remover prior to these, they do a great job at removing face makeup like light foundation, powders and blushes.
-Those with dry skin will love how moisturizing this is.

Con’s
-It’s a bit drippy. Which is good because you get more than enough cleanser but bad because it can be a bit messy.
-The pads are hard to pull apart. Each time I used ‘em, I’d grab 2-3 and then had to spend a few seconds pulling them apart.

2-3 pads…

1 pad…

-Didn’t really change the appearance of my skin in 7 days. But then again, despite the claims, I didn’t expect it to.
-My skin didn’t feel ultra clean. I still felt like I needed to follow up with another cleanser. Then again, I’m not really sure if it’s a cleanser or not. Maybe this is something you use AFTER you wash your face? I’m not sure.

Are these ideal for me for every day use? Probably not. I like the skin drying-type clean and these didn’t give it to me. But I’ll still be carrying them with me when I travel. I can be a lazy somethin’ when travelin’ and skincare wipes and pads that help me remove the days’s gunk without turning on some water are sooooo up my alley.

Oh, and this warning was on Drugstore.com so it’s definitely something to take heed to,

“This product contains an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) that may increase your skin’s sensitivity to the sun and particularly the possibility of sunburn. Use a sunscreen, wear protective clothing, and limit sun exposure while using this product and for a week afterwards.”

ETA: Look what else I found per Drugstore.com: Use on cleansed skin twice daily or as tolerated. In case of contact with eyes, flush thoroughly with water. That changes a lot, uh?

So is just me or am I the only slow bird that thought that these pads would actually be textured to exfoliate? Even though they said “scrub-free”? Whatcha think?

Neutrogena Naturals skincare is awesoooome!

Guess whaaaat? I’ve been testing a new skincare brand and my face hasn’t gone loco. Which is a HUGE deal. I’m pretty dedicated to the same skincare products. When they work, I keep using them. But at the same time I love reviewing skincare products soooooo yeah. I’m such a walking contradiction, uh?

When I was approached with the opportunity to test drive some Neutrogena Naturals products I was like, “Haaaay!”  Any time a huge brand says they’ve gone natural, I feel like it’s my duty to check ‘em out. Fo reals.

While I got to dilly and dally in the whole collection, these 4 are my absolute favorites.

The Purifying Facial Cleanser

Ah yessss. When it comes to cleansers, I feel simple is best. Which is why I really loved this one. And what’s the first ingredient on the list?

Water. My skin thanks you for this, Neutrogena. I’ve got normal skin that leans on the dry side so the added dose of moisture from the glycerin helped tremendously. I still get pimples every 2.3 hours and so the Willowbark acting as a natural salicylic acid was niiiiice. This is such a nice and gentle cleanser. While I’d be okay without fragrance, what little bit I did I get wasn’t too overpowering. The cleanser really DOES cleanse. It would probably be more suitable for those with oilier skin but I enjoy using it anyway. And I’m all for clear cleansers.

Creamier ones aren’t up my alley. And if it’s scrubs that you really like…you’ll love this one.

Purifying Face Scrub

I only use face scrubs once a week or so. I’m impressed with this one. The fragrance mimics the cleanser and it’s a bit on the creamier side with nice itty bitty micro-beads.

They do an effective job at scrubbing so long as you put in a little elbow grease. And once you’ve busted suds and you’re ready to put some moisture back in the skin, you’ve got 2 options. You can go with Neutrogena Naturals Multi-Vitamin Nourishing Moisturizer or the Multi-Vitamin Nourishing Night Cream.

By day I roll with the Nourishing Moisturizer.

I know when it comes to facial moisturizers, everyooooone has different needs. There’s so much to take into consideration. Will this moisturizer work well with my foundation? Does it have SPF? Is it thick enough? Is it too thick? Is it oily? Is it pore clogging? When it comes to daytime moisturizers, I just need TWO things. 1. I need for it to contain SPF. I live in Florida. 2. I need it to lightweight and gentle. Because, yeah…while my skin is dry after cleansing, I sweat profusely (do I get a cookie for being honest?) and thicker day creams don’t do much for me. This day cream got 1 out of 2 points. I so wish there was a bit of SPF in it. But the silky smooth and gentle formula made up for it.

Yep. It sinks right into my skin without giving me an oily or greasy feeling.

Multi-Vitamin Nourishing Night Cream

I never understood the point of night creams but I don’t know…age is making me a wee bit wiser because now I totally get it. This cream provides the same silky smooth feeling except it’s just a wee bit thicker. Which works! It feels decadent and creamy and seemed to work really well with my skin.

I actually look forward to slathering this on at night because ohmigoodness, it just feel SO nice.

Neutrogena Naturals also has a Fresh Cleansing Makeup Remover, Face & Body Bar and a Lip Balm. All of the products are free of harsh chemical sulfates, parabens, petrochemicals, dyes and phthalates. Huge, right? If you’ve been looking to green up your skincare regimen, you should totally glance at Neutrogena Naturals.

And speaking of natural living, through Glam Media, I received a bag of eco-friendly natural goodies including a set of Organic Bamboo cooking spoons…

AND, something I’ve been lusting after fo’eva!

A Bobble; the reusable water bottle that filters water by using carbon. Instead of purchasing water bottles, I’ve been using a filter but when I’m out and about and don’t feel so inclined to gag while drinking Orlando’s water (if you’ve tasted it…you know what I mean), I tote the Bobble with me. Genius, I say!

I’m not perfect but I really try to make an effort to live naturally. How?

-I moved closer to my job. Less gas for me and less pollution for Mother Nature.
-I stopped buying water bottles and use reusable bottles.
-I use one killer multiple purpose soap. It not only cleanses face and body but my dishes, clothes and floors.
-I recycle.

Whether it’s greening up your skincare or using eco-friendly products, greener is always better, darlings. Have you spied Neutrogena Naturals in your drugstores?

 

“Disclosure: Compensation was provided by Neutrogena via Glam Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Neutrogena.”

 

NEUTROGENA® Naturals Multi-Vitamin Nourishing Moisturizer is a daily lotion that replenishes
essential skin nutrients while providing continuous moisture throughout the day for healthier,
younger-looking skin. It contains no harsh chemical sulfates, parabens, petrochemicals, dyes or
phthalates.

NEUTROGENA® Naturals Multi-Vitamin Nourishing Night Cream replenishes essential
skin nutrients and is fortified with vitamins B, C, E and anti-oxidant omega bionutrients. This
nourishing cream is clinically proven to boost skin’s defense against dullness and roughness,
leaving it naturally radiant, healthier and younger looking today and in the future. It contains no
harsh chemical sulfates, parabens, petrochemicals, dyes or phthalates.

 

Eucerin Healthy Skin Challenge? I’m in!

Outside of mascara, one of the most commonly asked questions I get is, “B, how do you keep your skin nice and clear?”

My response usually begins with somethin’ like “Girl please…” Veteran Clumps readers know about the horror that is my skin. They’ve seen the bad, the worse and the Is this girl in her 20’s or is she a pimply-faced 16-year old?. Yeah. My skin is a piece of work and keeping it clear is a lifestyle. One that I spend a lot of time (ahem…and sometimes money) on. But I’m not mad. My face is what everyone sees and I take pride in maintaining a rigorously effective skincare regimen.

How does Eucerin fit in? The well-known brand has tapped me on the shoulder and asked if I’d like to participate in a Healthy Skin Challenge with a handful of other bloggers. Heck yah! I said. I’ll be taking you up close and personal with my pores. You’re excited, aren’t you? You should be because this challenge will also bring about giveaways for you guys ‘n gals. Yuuuup. Each month I’ll be presenting a new Call to Action and you’ll posts and pics of what’s working for my skin.

I’m exciiiiiiited. Obviously, right? Stay tuuuuned.

Disclaimer: My Healthy Skin Challenge posts are sponsored by Eucerin. But guess what? I keeps it real. All opinions are my own. *snaps in Z formation*

Vanilla lips, charcoal cheeks and an ocean breeze in a jar – Thanks LUSH!

I don’t think I’ve played around with LUSH alllll year. How lame am I? Ah well. Better late than never. Since summer has rolled around these parts (Florida totally skipped Spring), I’ll be baring more of that skin. Not in a “It’s so hot, I’m just going to go nekkid.” kind of way but have I been struttin’ in my skirts, shorts, bathing suits and strappy tanks? Oooooh yeah. These LUSH goodies are perfect for scrubbin’, exfoilating and moisturizing your skin all while getting it ready for the warmer weather.

Vegan Sweet Lips Lip Scrub in Vanilla
($8.95) – get it here

Oooooh how I love these lip scrubs. Prior to using the ones from LUSH, I was scrubbing my lips with my toothbrush. Which ain’t exactly sexy. But this scrub? Oh my words!

I love that it contains only a few ingredients. Sugar, vanilla extract, cocoa absolute and organic jojoba oil. Short and sweet ingredient lists are the best. LUSH says this scrub tastes like freshly baked chocolate chip cookies and I totally agree. And did I mention that it’s edible? Yes girl…if scrubbin’ on the go is your thing, you can dab some of this on your lips and lick it right off.

Oh, one thing though: be sure to close the top nice and tight. For if you don’t, the sugar will harden and become un-usable. Such was the case with my last jar of this scrub. Womp.

Dark Angels Facial Charcoal Cleanser
($11.95) – get it here

While it wouldn’t win the Sexiest Cleanser award, this cleanser is actually pretty effective. Even for those with sensitive skin like meeeee. Yeah. I get super excited when I come across cleansers that don’t make my skin go nuts. This cleanser is for those who have blocked pores and want to combat breakouts. Who knew black sugar and powdered charcoal could be so divine together?

There’s also a dose of rhassoul mud and organic avocado oil, both which do a great job and moisturizing the skin. Fragrance-wise, this stuff is…different. It’s got sandalwood and rosewood oils in it and while I’m a fan of both, the earthiness of this throws me off a bit. The fragrance dissipates after rinsing it off but still…when it’s on there, it smells funnnnyyyyy. But it works. And so I plug my nose and get to slathering.

Ocean Salt Facial and Body Scrub
($19.95 for 4.2 oz/$34.95 for 8.8 oz) – get it here

This Florida girl loves anything that attempts to capture the essence of the ocean. Of course nothing beats actually going to this beach, but this scrub isn’t half bad. Scent-wise, it is amaziiiing. Both refreshing and invigorating, I find that this coarse sea salt scrub is great for the face AND body.

It’s smooth and slick enough to go on the face but still coarse enough to be used on the body. It’s also a great unisex scrub as I find that the fragrance has a bit of a masculine whiff to it. With avocado oil, grapefruit and fresh lime infusion, this scrub gives a darn good job at giving the illusion of being at the beach.

LUSH never steers me wrong….

Are Burt’s Bees’ gud products…good?

I’ve been a fan of Burt’s Bees since like….high school. Speaking of high school, I can NOT believe my 10-year class reunion is coming up. Like…just where in the world did the time go? And is it just me or does going to a high school class reunion seem like a waste? Thanks to Facebook and peoples’ over-sharing updates, there won’t be any shock values, ya know? So I doubt if I’ll go to mine.

If I had to classify gud products, they’d be Juniors. They aren’t as cool as Seniors (or Burt’s Bees) but they aren’t on the diss-levels like Freshmen and Sophomores are. There’s a whole ton of products of varying fragrances in the gud family but I’ve just just three of ‘em here for ya.

First up is the Vanilla Flame Natural Hand Cream. It comes in a 3oz bottle and retails for $7.99

The fragrance was nice and vanilla-y. A little too strong for my liking but then again I’m a gal who can proudly row in the “Unscented” boat. It’s a nice and thick hand lotion.

I was glad to see it wasn’t watery. Nothing in life sucks more than a watery lotion.

Then there’s the Natural Body Mist. You get a 3oz bottle for $5.99.

I can’t lie on this one, y’all. I don’t wear body mists. Did the girls in high school wear them after gym class instead of actually taking a shower? Yuuup. The good news is, while body mists aren’t up my alley, I can appreciate that this one doesn’t have a strong alcohol-scent to it. A lot of mists do.

The scent of Floral Cherrynova, like the hand cream, is a bit on the strong side – which for some works. But alas, like most mists, it isn’t long lasting. Your best bet is to use the coordinating body lotion with the mist to get the scent to stay around for longer.

Aaaaand lastly we’ve got the Natural Body Butter in Orange Petalooza. The 6oz tub goes for $11.99

Body butters. I love ‘em. While they are super effective at busting ash during the colder months, I actually use them year round. Especially right before bed. This butter isn’t as thick as I like ‘em.

My skin is insanely dry and requires premium ash busting agents like cocoa and shea butters. Anything outside of those usually doesn’t work. On a good note, this is perhaps my favorite fragrance of ‘em all. It’s citrus-y and isn’t AS in your face as the other fragrances are.

Pro’s
-Each product is cruelty-free and paraben-free.
-For paraben-free products, these are priced nicely and you get enough bang for your buck.
-There are several fragrances to choose from: Floral Cherrynova, Orange Petalooza, Vanilla Flame and Pearanormal Activity.
-Easy to spot in the U.S. You can get ‘em from drugstores nationwide.
-If you’re big on organic ingredients, a few of these products have some.
-Packaging-wise, the products are small enough to toss in purse or bookbag.

Con’s
-Fragrances are stroooong.
-The lotion and butter weren’t AS moisturizing as I thought they would be.
-These products don’t come off as super high quality skincare products. They get the job done but they aren’t products that I could see myself using regularly.

Overall thoughts:
If you’re a Burt’s Bees fan, I say give gud a try. I’ve come across better drugstore skincare products but I think this brand is mostly geared towards younger girls. The packaging is girly and whimsical and I could see middle and high school girls toting gud products. If you’re like me and have a dry skin, you may want to go with other products. On a good note, if you only like to use paraben-free products, these products are free of ‘em. Which is definitely a perk in my book.

Whatcha think? Have you tried any gud goodies?

 

Vegan Aftershave for the fella in your life…

Esposo isn’t the kind of man that feels the need to slather on cologne every day of the week. Which is a shame because I’m a woman that loves a man who smells good. But I get it. Esposo works in a high-energy industry where he’s liftin’, programmin’ and moving around for 12 hours a day. Cologne is so not needed.

But still. Being the husband of a beauty blogger means I can subtlety push products on him. Such was the case with Aubrey Organics’ Men’s Stock City Rhythms Aftershave.

Handsome, isn’t he? Men or their SO’s can scoop this fragrance and two others like it at natural health food stores for less than $10 for a 4oz bottle. Not too shabby. Esposo shaves almost every day so I thought he’d be a good candidate for using something like this.


Ingredients-wise, the aftershave certainly has a whoooole lot less than what many aftershaves on the market has.

INGREDIENTS INCI: Alcohol denat., aqua, hamamelis virginiana (witch hazel) water, aloe barbadensis (aloe) leaf juice*, glycerin, cedrus atlantica (cedar) oil, santalum album (sandalwood) oil, pogostemon cablin (patchouli) oil, citrus aurantium bergamia (bergamot) oil, cananga odorata (ylang) oil, panax ginseng root extract.
*Organic (source)

I love the inclusion of sandalwood and bergamont as those are some of my favorite essential oils. Witch hazel and aloe both have cooling properties, making them perfect for men to use after shaving. And while I proudly ride the “less is better” when it comes to ingredients train, Esposo just…well, he could care less.

Scent-wise I got more of an alcohol-smell in this more than anything. To the product’s defense, it iiiiis the first ingredient on the list. The cedar and sandalwood scents were there but seemed to wear off of Esposo’s cheeks and neck within hours. Boo.

What Esposo says:
I’m not one of these guys that really cares about the whole tree hugging, anti-artifical movement. I’m not against it either, but the whole #AllNaturalEverything schtick can get wearisome. Especially when it jacks up the price of products I’d otherwise purchase.

That being said, the concept of an all natural cologne/aftershave is pretty cool , but the execution was a bit underwhelming. Don’t worry guys, it doesn’t smell like flower petals or anything remotely feminine. It does however remind me of something my dad might wear, and that is definitely not the business. It feels cool and refreshing going on, but the scent is too mellow and old school for my tastes. I prefer something a bit brighter and spicier. It’ll probably work for some guys out there, but that’s not my bag, baby.

Ah well. Packaging-wise the splash is still sophisticated and sleek and perhaps the other fragrances are up to par.

Whatcha think ladies and gents? Yay or nay vegan aftershaves?

A great body scrub for when the sand at the beach isn’t available….

Did I tell y’all I went to the Bahamas a few weeks ago? Yep! Esposo and I took a quick 3-day cruise to one of my favorite islands. Too bad we didn’t get to do much because sooooomeone hurt himself after falling off of a scooter. The other someone has been playing nurse ever since. Womp.

I’m a Florida girl who loves beaches. For many reasons but primarily because the sand is so exfoliating. Yep. You heard correctly. I mix sand and water and exfoliate my feet, legs and hands right on the beach. I should probably be embarrassed about admitting this, but I’m not.

Since I couldn’t get my beach scrubbin’ on, I’ve been playin’ around with Pooka Pure & Simple’s Sugar Body Polish.

Oh girl. This is the bomb dot com.

Not all scrubs are the same, ya know. Some are great for exfoliating but in return they can leave the skin a bit rough. Which totally defeats the point of scrubbing, right? Pooka Pure & Simple’s Sugar Body Polish has cane sugar and coconut oil so I can get my scrub on and moisturize at the same time. It’s wonderful. Pomegrante and kiwi are two of my favorite fruits so the fragrance is definitely up my alley. But can I be honest? I’d love this just as much if it was fragrance-free.

Bits of kiwi seed greet me at each handful…

…and after sloughing away the dead skin cells, I am left with super soft and moisturized skin. The 12 oz tub goes for $20 and Pooka Pure & Simple also has Coconut Crunch and Guava Berry scents as well.

Yes girl. Yes. You can pick up a tub here.

A fan of body scrubs are you, darlings?

Bliss Rubberizing Mask. I know…weird, uh?

When it comes to at-home masks, I’ve tried it all. I’ve made my own and I’ve purchased a whoooole ‘lot too. From the clay masks to the masks that taste good enough to eat, I’ve come across one that is blowing mind. It’s a rubberizing mask.

And no. I couldn’t make this up.

Bliss’ Fabulous Skin-Reviving Rubberizing mask is perhaps one of the most innovative face masks I’ve EVER come across. It’s cool, weird, fun and creepy all at the same time.

 

According to Sephora.com “This straight-from-the-spa mask provides an absorption-enhancing rubber texture to deliver bright and healthy skin. It fends off free radicals, calms skin, and helps even out skin’s tone and texture, leaving a vibrant and refreshed-looking complexion.”

Well, um okay. I’ve never had a mask promise that it would fend off free radicals but alriiiiighty then. And unlike other masks, this one does not come packaged and ready to go. After popping open the box, out tumbled 6 packets of powder-y solution…

And wooden stir thingies…

A plastic scoop also flew out and according to the instructions I was to pour some water in that cup along with the powder-y solution.

And then stir until it created a paste…

Beautiful, uh? Now what’s in this concoction, you ask?

A whole bunch of ingredients I can’t pronounce, that’s for sure. But on a good note, the paste felt suuuuper cooling.

I couldn’t waiiiiit to slather it all over my skin.

Oooopey goopey goodness. 15-20 minutes later and it got all rubber-y and was ready to remove…

My skin afterwards…

Pro’s
-The cooling sensation this masks gives is just amaziiiiiing. It felt so good going on.
-Removing was fun! Because some parts of the mask didn’t remove easily, I ended up having to wipe the rest off with a warm washcloth.
-It didn’t dry out my skin.
-My skin felt smoother immediately after removing mask.
-I like mixing and stirring action that takes place before applying the mask.

Con’s
-The fragrance was too strong. This is the kind of mask that would have been just fine if it were fragrance-free.
-I didn’t notice any significant changes in my skin other than the softness.
-It’s a fun mask but isn’t all that effective if you’re looking to target something specific.

At $38 for 6 packets at Sephora, I would say this one expensive mask. The box mentions that is best used once a week so if you used it weekly, you’d only get a good month and a half usage out of it. But still, it’s one the most fun masks I’ve ever used and I’ll definitely be saving the remaining packets for Girls’ Night In.

Whatcha think? Are rubberized masks too gimicky or kinda cool?