Health & Beauty Bytes

Baksshi Botanicals: Vitamin C Brightening Sheet Mask

Review: Vitamin C Brightening Face Mask

Review: Vitamin C Brightening Face Mask

I recently had the chance to test* the new Baksshi Botanicals Vitamin C Brightening Sheet Mask ($6.99 for 1 mask). Baksshi Botanicals is a relatively new brand to the U.S. but I am told has been selling in Asia for years. I was interested in trying it because the product has organic ingredients and is paraben and artificial preservative-free. It’s packed with goodies for your face like Sodium Hyaluronate (4th ingredient!!), Ascorbic Acid (aka Vitamin C), and Niacinimide.

My husband did a little discreet man-scream when he found me like this on the sofa...

My husband did a little discreet man-scream when he found me like this on the sofa…

I actually was not sure what to expect with a sheet mask as I’ve only used traditional paste/cream/clay masks before that you apply with your fingers.  As you can see from the photo, the sheet mask was super easy to apply!  It had little precut eye/nose/mouth holes making application a snap.

Before application I washed and dried my face as usual and placed the unopened pack in a bowl of warm water to warm it up.  In the meantime, I could feel my skin tightening without my usual post-wash application of moisturizer.  However I didn’t have long to wait as soon it was warm and I carefully pulled out the mask and applied it to my face, tapping it down everywhere to make as much contact as possible.  I was happy to discover that it clung well to my face and did not require me to lie down/still to keep it in place (i.e. – perfect for catching up on your favorite shows on the sofa!).

Five minutes after application, my face felt cool and tingled slightly, but not unpleasantly. I waited the full 20 minutes and then removed the mask, spritzed once with rosewater (my favorite toner) and massaged the remaining mask liquid into my face and neck as suggested.  My face felt completely hydrated and a little plumped.  I could have skipped my nightly serum but I applied it as the packaging suggests. My face felt happy all evening.

The next day my skin still felt hydrated but I didn’t notice much difference in the clarity/brightening of my face, but a rep from the company told me they suggest you use it at least once a week for a month for full effects.  If nothing else it was a pleasant little in-home spa experience I’d be happy to try again.

Bakkshi Botanicals can be found at www.bakkshibotanicals.com (coming soon), or baksshi@gmail.com.

*Note: Product was supplied free of charge in exchange for an honest review.

Fun with OPI Liquid Sand  <——————————————————————————

OPI Liquid Sand Magazine Cover Mouse

OPI Liquid Sand Magazine Cover Mouse

Liquid Sand is just one kind of the many textured polishes out there right now.  My favorite thing about textured polishes is that they are super-forgiving when it comes to touch ups, and therefore ideal for a pedicure, which you can keep looking fresh for up to 2 months, or however long you can tolerate your toenails to be!

Here I am mani-modeling OPI’s Magazine Cover Mouse – this was 2 coats over a clear base coat, and no top coat.  After a week it was still looking good but, getting bored (as I usually do), I decided to do some color blocking with 3 other Liquid Sands colors: OPI Jinx (orange on tips), OPI Alcatraz Rocks (blue) and OPI What Wizardy is This?(bronze). I think I liked it with the blue best, but making straight lines on textured polish is kind of rough (pun intended), so it’s a little messy, as you can see.  Fun to play around with though.

Color-blocking with textured polish

Color-blocking with textured polish

Is anyone planning any exciting Halloween manicures or pedicures? I’m going dark this week, as you will see in the next Health & Beauty Bytes.  I will also be dipping into the world of vitamins and minerals in that article – with some unfortunate side effects of prescription heartburn medicine, and easy ways to combat them that your doctor (most-likely) did not tell you about.  Until then…

Time for a Coffee,

Maddy

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Health and Beauty Bytes

Happy Autumn, everyone!
Now I realize the word beauty is in the title here, so men, before you click away, stay tuned, this first tip is for everyone…

DIY: World’s cheapest, non-bacteria-laden face exfoliant…

No need to buy a fancy scrubber when you can DIY!

No need to buy a fancy scrubber when you can DIY!

For those who don’t get these things hammered into their heads by 6 beauty magazines a month, like I do, exfoliation is basically any kind of scrubbing of one’s skin. Now my research tells me (see bit about the 6 magazines a month) that the best kind of exfoliation for your face is one of these fancy battery powered scrubby brushes (i.e. Clairsonic, Olay, etc.) and the accompanying fancy(read as: pricey) exfoliating gel.  I did this for about a year and my skin did look much improved – smoother, better toned.  HOWEVER, my new routine of 8+ months has the exact, same effect at a fraction of the cost liquid face soap, with a sprinkling of baking soda.  Ta da! It’s something so low-tech it will drop your WPM by at least 5.

That’s right, take your favorite basic non-medicated face wash (I use Purpose), and buy one of the plastic bottles of baking soda with the click-top lid, and sprinkle some baking soda in your hand (mix with the face soap), wash your face as usual (circular motions work best), and you have a great facial exfoliator you can use once a day and look as fresh and bump-free as someone who sadly paid $150 for their set-up. Everyone has baking soda at home (right?) so you can try this for free any time you want.  If you like it – let me know!

Now on to a decidedly girlier topic… One of my 3 addictions in life (besides books, the other addiction is pens, don’t get too excited!) – I’m talking about nail polish.

Manicure Selfies: OPI Shatter tests…

OPI shatter and it’s various spin-offs have been out for a few years now.  I got a white Avon version 2 or 3 years ago and I wasn’t super impressed and didn’t try others at the time, but have since figured out that the versions with sparkle (not glitter, but fine sparkle) are much prettier than the flat colors.  They also make your manicure last at least a week and tend to camouflage the polish wear at the end of your nails that just can’t be helped unless you have minions that do all your chores for you (and type for you as well).

Gold Shatter over red polish.

Gold Shatter over red polish.

I tried 2 color combos recently.  First — OPI Gold Shatter over OPI Innie Minnie Mighty Bow which is a pink-leaning red. I LOVED this – it was super-festive, very Christmas holidays or Chinese New Year – fun, happy, and lucky all rolled into one.  Only one coat of gold shatter is needed, and 2 coats of the red.

Magenta Shatter over pink polish.

Magenta Shatter over pink polish.

Same basic method but in different colors… Next I tried plum/magenta OPI Nicki Minaj Super Bass Shatter over OPI Chic from Ears to Tail which is a soft bubble-gum pink. This wasn’t as amazing to me at the gold/red combo, but still fun.  The sparkle in the Super Bass is much more subtle than the gold was. I used 2 coats of the pink and 1 of the shatter. I may try this over black around Halloween, who knows?  Oh!  And I always recommend using a basecoat and a speed dry clear coat to make your mani last it’s longest.

Well whether you give a hoot about beauty tips or not, I hope you have a fabulous week ahead, and keep reading! BTW, I’m half way through 50 Shades now.  I’m not very impressed so far, I’d heard there were issues with the writing style (mediocre) and I think that’s correct.  If I had a dollar for every time the heroine has said “Oh my” so far I’d have a very posh lunch out indeed!

Time for a coffee,

Maddy