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Sep 23, 2014

Skincare Haul for Under $30

I'm to the point now where honey, lemon and brown sugar isn't cutting it for a facial routine anymore. I have been staying up long hours juggling all of my projects, and then going to work so that we have money for groceries (as food is an important part of survival for the most part).

With all of that being said, something had to give, and it was my skin. Maybe if I wasn't running on minimal sleep, honey and natural ingredients would serve their purpose but I'm in skin health deficit and to come out of debt, I needed to go stock up on some products.

So I've been going on and on about my Wunderlist app, where I now write all of my lists, keeping meticulous track of everything. I started a new list called Skincare and wrote down every problem I was having with my face. After I did that, I did some research on products that aimed to fix each problem. I then pinned those items on a Pinterest Beauty board, and then left to go shopping. I love integrating my apps to make my life easier and more efficient.

I ended up freestyling most of my shopping, as I didn't find a lot of the things I saved to my pin board, but that worked out just fine as I knew generally what I was looking for, thanks to my research. I always find that preparing for a shopping trip of any kind beforehand makes it much easier to navigate the stores in search for your wanted item.

 Equate Beauty: Anti-Puffiness Eye Roll-On Walmart $7.67

One of the most important areas I needed help with was my under eye area. Like I mentioned before, late nights come at a cost. That cost is gross looking eyes, and everyone feeling the need to vocalize how tired you look (pet peeve). Don't comment on how tired I look, just say "Hey, your face looks fricking ugly today, what the hell happened?" Or just say "Wow, you have horrible bags under your eyes, and I could not go another moment in my life without making sure that you knew that I am aware of this". I actually would respect that more than this scenario:

SettingAt work. I am in a neutral state, not cheerleader perk, but not walking dead. Approaching nearby coworker...

Me: Good morning, how are you today?
Coworker:  Good morning, I'm doing pretty good. How are you?
Me: Oh, I'm alright. A little tired, but all is well. 
Coworker: Yea? Well you look it....
Me: (Polite smile) Walks away with no response

Basic Etiquette Rule No. 1: Never comment on how tired someone looks in a casual conversation. 

If a person looks tired, it is safe to assume that they might feel the same (especially if they just said it!) If you feel the need to insult someone, don't do it underhandedly, just do it straight up and reap whatever situation you have sewn. Don't be an irritating piece of sh*t. 

To all those reading: Thank you for letting me rant :) ANYHOO, during my shopping trip, I saw a few other brands that I considered purchasing. I lined them all up to compare and contrast ounce size, benefits, and price. Here were the contenders. 

The price range was from $7.67 to about $15. I'm glad I chose the off brand one for starters. This stuff started working for me in like two days. I saw some pretty quick results, although I do expect to have to use this for a little while longer to get back to where I need to be. Also, there is no product out there that can make up for good ole' fashion sleep. I need to make sure to add some extra sleep time in to offset the hours I am awake working.

Ambi Skincare: Complexion Cleansing Bar Walmart $1.87

The first thing I needed was a cleanser. I was in the market for something that wasn't too harsh, as my face is sensitive. There were a myriad of options ranging from foams, to sudsy detergent-like, to cream cleansers. I didn't mind the bar soaps, so I picked up an Ambi Complexion Cleansing Bar.

It fit all of my needs and I liked the fact that I was getting a product that aimed to correct complexion as well. It smells wonderful and is silky feeling and gentle. The only downside is keeping up with a bar of soap instead of a bottle.

Equate Beauty: Blemish Control Apricot Scrub Walmart $1.97

After cleansing with the Ambi, I moved on to applying this face scrub. I wanted to try out the Equate version of the St. Ives Apricot Scrub, as I am sure it does the same exact thing for less money. Since my cleanser didn't have any sort of acne treatment involved, I decided to get this scrub to make sure that area was covered. I don't have bad acne problems but I do get random breakouts when I'm stressed out or not taking care of myself properly. .

I enjoyed this product because I haven't had any bad reactions to it. I tried a Queen Helene Mud Mask type situation and it usually leaves me with a huge blotch of irritated skin. This apricot scrub seems to get rid of a layer of skin, which is necessary to really get any breakouts treated. I'm happy with it. I don't see why I would have to get the actual St. Ives brand. I guess I could just to compare and see if it works even better...but I doubt that be the case.

Sea Breeze: Alcohol Free Refreshing Toner Walmart $3.97

I went out and sought after Sea Breeze for my toning product. In the past, I wold often purchase astringents that serve the purpose of treating acne, but I strayed from that particular kind and grabbed the alcohol free toner. It definitely is refreshing, although I'm not sure if this product is completely necessary as of yet. I am going to continue using it, and then take a break from it to see if there is any difference. 

Pond's: Dark Spot Correcting Cream Target $1.47

This had to have been my favorite purchase next to the under eye treatment. It's the only product I ended up purchasing from Target. I found it in the travel and trial section where everything is a around a dollar or two. This was a very nice sized jar to be under two bucks. I think this was a great buy, especially for what I wanted to use it for. Since this is a dark spot correcting cream, I had planned on using it as a spot treatment more so than an all over situation. This cream was so light and silky fresh. I am in love it. I'm thinking about making it my full time day cream, meaning I will have to invest in a larger jar sooner or later. 

St. Ives: Collagen Elastin Moisturizer Walmart $5.44

This St. Ives Moisturizer has been a staple of mine for quite sometime. I haven't bought it in a little while, but I had to return to it as it is the most economical item that works for me. Now that I have discovered the Ponds cream, this St. Ives Collagen Elastin Moisturizer feels greasier. As a result, I have decided to make this my night time cream. 

This cream does a good job keeping the skin plump, soft and full after you commit to it. You get so much of it, and you don't need a lot to cover your face. I like the idea of collagen in the cream. Keep this skin young looking as long as I can!

Equate Beauty: Refreshing Cleansing Towelettes Walmart $3.48

These are for my lazy days, and for getting off make up. I also use these to apply my toner. It's just nice to have a pack of face wipes. Sometimes you just don't feel like doing the whole sink song and dance. These are perfect for a quick refresher. When I come home and turn in for the evening, one of the first things I do is reach for a towelette and start cleansing my face. I will eventually get to my Ambi soap but I like the idea of immediately getting the day's filth off of my face to keep the pores clean. 

There are a lot of different brands to choose from. I went generic this time for testing purposes and because it was cheap. These particular Equate cleansing towelettes aren't the moistest on the market, but they are indeed sturdy for getting a really deep clean. (When I'm done with the towelette, I usually find someway to use it before tossing it, like wiping down my sink or some random surface that needs cleaning). I am going to experiment with other brands eventually, but I must say this one had the most amount of towelettes included that I saw. 

Final thoughts

Overall I must say that this was a successful haul. I was able to get a lot of the products I needed at inexpensive prices. I have seen notable improvements in the condition of my skin since I purchased them (it's been about three days of using everything about twice a day). My skin condition before the haul was pretty much dry, uneven tone...blemishy.

Mostly, it was the under eye situation I needed some help with. I'm hoping this continues to go well. Once I phase out of these products, I will keep my favs, and move on to try some different brands. I hope this has helped someone, as I appreciate any reviews out there that aids in my product discoveries.


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