Friday, May 27, 2011

Penny's Not Done - More Sunscreen

 It's 9am....Do you know where you SUNSCREEN is? 

Okay folks! Its currently 91 degrees and sunny where I am now! Well, let's face it, most of us don't wear sunscreen daily or even think about it as we get dressed each day (unless we work outdoors). Penny admits that although I wear sunscreen on my face daily, and have for many years, I don't think about my body. I have worked in a corporate office for most of my career and I can easily go an entire day without being out in the sun for more than the time it takes to get to my car and commute to and from work. But I really want to change my habits and become more protective of my skin. It doesn't have to be complicated people. We develop bad habits in an instant...and keep them for half a lifetime. Why not develop some good ones? LOL!

If you dread an extra step to apply sunscreen in the morning (cause everyone knows we don't have a minute to spare!)...then purchase a body lotion "with" sun protection. The key is to look for 'broad spectrum' products; products that fight UVA and UVB rays. Here are a couple body lotions with SPF you muight want to try:
  • Eucerin Extra Protection Moisturizing Body Lotion, SPF 15 ($9.99, 13.5oz Target)
  • Yes to Carrots Hydrating Lotion with SPF 30 ($14, 4.2oz, Walmart)
  • KIEHL'S Creme de Corps Light-Weight Body Lotion SPF 30 ($27, Bloomingdales)
  • Lubriderm Advanced Therapy Moisturizer with Sunscreen SPF 30 ($6.99, ULTA) *
* Some may contain 'oxybenzone' which may cause allergic reactions amongst other things. See blog post from May 25th.

Here are some more commonly seen brands of sunscreen as well. I found that the list I gave you the other day had lots of brands I've never heard of that may be hard to find. So here are some that should be more recognizable.
  • Aveeno Active Naturals Protection Mineral Block Sunscreen Lotion, SPF 30 ($10,
  • Banana Boat Sport Performance Broad Spectrum Sunscreen Lotion, SPF 30 ($10, Target)*
  • NO-AD Ultra Sunblock Lotion, SPF 30 ($9, Kmart) *
  • Walgreens Sport SPF 30 Sunscreen Lotion ($2.99, Walgreens)*

* Some may contain 'oxybenzone' which may cause allergic reactions amongst other things. See blog post from May 25th.

Penny also recommends NOT using the same product that you use on your body, for your face. Especially if you have sensitive skin. Almost every brand mentioned in these blog posts has a formula specifically for the FACE. There are also formulas for babies and kids needs.  (read full story...)

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Penny's UPDATE - Skin is In

Guess who?

This morning I came across an article about sunscreen that caught my attention. Penny 'was' a sun worshipper in another youthful life. But today she has to be much more wise and conservative about her bake time. LOL! The lovely color that once came naturally to this Virgin Island native is harder to achieve these days. With so many changes to my skin in the past 10 yrs (i.e. melasma, sun spots, eczema, etc)...some from age or hormones...and some from bad habits...I'm now more protective of my skin than ever before. After all, dermatologists and aestheticians have been telling me for years to protect myself from the sun...the sun I love. *sigh* Now I know why. Sun damage is no joke. And in case you haven't noticed Mother Nature has been coming at us with a vengeance for years now...everything occurs at a heightened state. We must be careful of UVA and UVB rays. Growing up in the Caribbean I had never even heard of either. But today we must be more diligent about using sunscreen. Not only are we to wear it DAILY but we need to re-apply it to (especially if exposed to sun regularly or continuously).

And don't be fooled by "high" sun protection factor (SPF). Many believe that the high SPF is no more effective than others with a lower number, and that it gives folks a false sense of security. Please take a moment to read this article that provides more detail on the types of sunscreen to avoid...and ones to try:  (Click on the link)

In my post from May 3, Skin is In, I mentioned that it was important to use sunscreen and listed Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunblock SPF 30   as the one I was currently using. Well according to the article, this sunblock contains "oxybenzone" which it turns out can cause 'allergic reactions and is a potential hormone disruptor.'  Well, Penny needs no help disrupting the hormones so I will be shopping this weekend for a new sunblock from the following 'recommended' list. LOL!

(read full story...)

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Penny's UPDATE - Eye Shadow Primer

Hi all:
Hope everyone is well and enjoying their Sunday afternoon.
As promised, I’m going to start posting UPDATES to some of my previous posts. Most times I reply to individual questions about a particular product but then others who have the same questions may not get the answers they're looking for. So whenever there is something new to report even if its a previous posted product, I will try to post a new blog about it.
In my April 27th blog I recommended Stila Prime Pot in Caramel ($20, Sephora)…I said it was the perfect primer (for those with dark lids like Penny)…well, it’s not so perfect. I think I may have jumped the gun on this one and I was wrong. (Stranger things have happened. LOL! Remember that Penny is on the ‘trial & error’ plan too). For those who do not have oily eyelids or a problem with eye shadow creasing, then this primer may still be a good buy for you. But I have since used this primer on warm days when my face tends to get oily and the primer did not hold up (see pic).  Here is my previous list of pros and cons…revised.

  • Holds my eye shadow in place all day
  • Neutralizes the uneven skin tone on my lids
  • Creates a smooth surface to work with
  • Doesn’t crease
  • Easy to apply (for Penny at least)
  • Dries quickly
  • Creases if you have oily lids
  • Only comes in 2 colors (Caramel & Tawny)
  • Dries quickly (for some this can make it harder to apply)
(read full story...)

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Skin is In II

I think Penny got tired during the last post because she forgot to mention a couple of products. LOL! Until a week ago when I received my order of Passion Body Butter from Forplai, I was successfully using and loving the following products.
  • Trader Joe's 'A Midsummer's Night Cream' Moisturizing Cream, Extra Dry Formula (unscented) - This pH balanced herbal blend body lotion is an excellent, non-greasy, rich cream that absorbs quickly and tackles my dry skin all day. It is inexpensive ($3.99 I think) and works as well or better than lots of the more expensive lotions on the market. Unfortunately if you don't have a Trader Joe's grocery store near you, its not always available online.
  • African Shea Butter Oil 100% (unscented) - This is a gem I stumbled upon on one of my many shopping trips at LOL! I love this oil! It is pure shea butter that is processed differently so that you get a thick oil that pours instead of a hard solid cream in a jar that you have to scoop. It has little bits of solid shea butter in and absorbs into the skin without feeling heavy. Most of all it helps control the nighttime dryness and itching I experience from my eczema. This is exactlty like the pure shea butter I've bought in the past from random vendors but in a more convenient, liquid formula. I found that the product was cheaper on Amazon than on the distributor's site once you add in shipping & handling.  (; $10, 8oz; $17, 16oz, plus S&H).
This is my nighttime treatment.  I will continue to use this regimen and use the body butter as an alternate nighttime treatment.To successfully treat my eczema I have combined body lotion with a light body oil for many years. I believe this combination helps keep my skin moisturized the entire day. In the mornings I use the same Trader Joe's Moisturizing Cream combined with Neutrogena Sesame Body Oil or Origins Ginger Glossing Oil.  I love the fresh, citrus smell of these products.

(read full story...)

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Skin is In

Penny here!
It's time for us to show some skin!'s that time of year again to ready our skin for the exposure it gets in the warm spring and summer. One of the best ways to prep your skin is to exfoliate and moisturize regularly. And always remember your sunblock. Those of you living in warmer climates should already practice this beauty regimen.
Exfoliating helps rid the body of dry dead skin and dullness to reveal smooth more vibrant skin. Focus on elbows, knees, heels, and any place you feel dry, rough, patches. Often we neglect our skin in the winter months because we keep it covered up. So now is a good time to pay special attention to it. Be gentle even with exfoliation; just because you want to rid yourself of dead skin, does not mean you should be harsh or use anything abrasive.
Penny has been known to partake in a brown sugar body scrub or two (or five, LOL). I even make my own from time to time with the simplest of recipes using kitchen ingredients:
  • Light brown sugar
  • Honey
  • Pure Olive or almond oil
Combine all ingredients adding the oil slowly until you make a paste. This scrub may be applied to damp or dry skin. I prefer to apply to dry skin in very light circular motions. Be careful when you shower off the paste as the shower floor/bathtub surface will become slick from the oil. (Use a household cleanser strong enough to remove the oil). You can add other essential oils and spices to your concoction if you choose. Surf the Internet for your favorite recipe!

Lately I have indulged in another scrub. Bath and Body Works now has a Sudsing Scrub ($13, ). I love the Aromatherapy lines Energy (orange-ginger) and Stress Relief (eucalyptus-spearmint) scents.  These scrubs not only wash clean and smell great, but they leave your skin super smooth and soft.  BBW's Aromatherapy line also offers Sugar Scrubs ($16) in my two favorite scents as well as others like Sensual (jasmine-vanilla), Energy (lemon zest), Sleep (lavender-vanilla), Stress Relief (vanilla-verbena), and Sleep (lavender-chamomile). 

Body butters are Penny's favorites. Since I have dry skin (eczema) I need serious moisture and not products with high water contents. Sephora Collection Super Supreme Body Butter ($14) is one of my favorites. It's rich yet light and non-greasy; it absorbs well into the skin. It has a nice smell but scent is a personal thing so take a whiff from the tester while you're in the store if you plan to try this for the first time. LOL!

Penny is also trying a fairly NEW Body Butter. Actor turned entrepreneur Lamman Rucker teamed up with Kofee & Kompany (a Dallas-based spa) to create line of skin care called FORPLAI. I have to confess that I was curious because I love me some Lamman Rucker! (Who doesn't dig Sherriff Troy? LOL!) So I ordered the Passion Body Butter ($22, 4oz).   There are two lines available containing a body mist, body scrub, and body butter. Passion is described as a "unisex fragrance; warm and sensual with hints of chocolate, caramel and vanilla."
(read full story...)