Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Skin is In

Penny here!
It's time for us to show some skin! Yes...it'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, www.bathandbodyworks.com ). 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). www.forplai.com   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...)

The texture is like most shea butter moisturizers I've tried; solid until you rub some between your palms and  the heat turns the solid butter to oil. So far (it has only been a week), it seems to be an effective moisturizer; making my skin feel soft and smooth. It absorbs well but my biggest challenge is the scent....vanilla latte?..cocoa butter?...chocolate & vanilla? Whatever it is, it's a bit strong for me and lingers on the skin like old school cocoa butter. LOL! Penny's not a vanilla fan unless it is blended with certain other fragrances so I find myself only able to use this body butter as a nighttime moisturizing treatment. The only other scent available right now is called Purity; but from the description, I'm not sure if it will work for Penny either. Purity is described as a "delicate, soft, sexy and innocent blend of vanilla and pear fragrances with hints of floral."  I wish there was a way to smell this scent first....scratch and sniff card? LOL! The good news is that the company plans to introduce two new scents, Peace and Power, sometime this spring. Penny will be patient.

Sunscreen and sunblock are essential for ALL.  With the risk of skin cancer and other skin disorders, we all need to become more diligent about sun protection. Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunblock SPF 30 or SPF 45 ($10, Target) has been rated one of the best overall sunscreens.  It has avobenzone and oxybenzone for protection against short-and long-wave UVA rays, which can cause long-term skin damage. Reviewers say the SPF 30 version is unscented, lightweight, water-resistant, non-greasy, and contains antioxidants. Other top rated sunscreens are:
  1. Coppertone Sport Sunscreen Continuous Spray SPF 30 ($8, Target)
  2. La Roche-Posay Anthelios 40 Sunscreen Cream UVA Protection with Mexoryl SX ($30, CVS, Amazon.com)
  3. Coppertone Oil Free Foaming Sunscreen SPF 75+ ($9, Target)
  4. Clarins UV Plus HP Day Screen SPF 40 ($38, Sephora)
  5. Origins A Perfect World SPF 35 UV Face Protector ($27.50, Macys)
  6. Aveeno Baby Continuous Sunblock SPF 55 ($10, CVS, Target)

Be blessed. Be beautiful.

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