Dec 31, 2008

Ingredient Spotlight: Silicones, Breakouts and My Skin

Silicones are used in everything from facial moisturizer to shampoo to make-up primer. Because silicone is water-proof it is also used in a lot of sunscreens. Silicones, much like petrolatum or mineral oil are occlusive, thus they coat the skin protecting it from the enviroment. However, in doing so it may also prevent the pores from being as easily able to release the dirt and grime that accumulates during the day. The most common silicone used in skin care is Dimethicone. Sometimes it is the second or third ingredient in a product and thus in a high concentration.

During the summer, when I use products that contain silicone, I tend to break out more than when I use the same products during the winter. I have therefore concluded that the silicones present in those products tend to cause me clogged pores, especially in the summer when I perspire.

The same is true when I use products with mineral oil or petrolatum. Although both are considered non acne-causing, when I use products that contain either ingredient I tend to break out. And many times they cause me large, painful, deep, pimples that are difficult to treat.

There has been some mention of pimples being caused by sweating and using silicone based products in acne prone individuals. Whether this is true for everyone, I don't know, but it seems to be with my skin. I know plenty of people who use silicone based skin care products that have no trouble with them at all so it is one of those things that obvisouly varies by the person and their skin type.

If you suffer with acne and aren't sure the cause it might be worth reading the ingredients on your skin care products and seeing just what they contain.

Dec 30, 2008

Mastey de Paris Traite Shampoo

Over 12 years ago my hair was damaged during a double process reverse highlighting. It resulted in my hair breaking off and having to have it cut very short. I was then using another salon brand of shampoo and conditioner but it was suggested that I try Mastey de Paris Traite Sulfate-Free Shampoo because it was sulfate-free, gentle and contained the Natural Moisturzing Factor. I was told that because it contained high levels of protein and amino acids that my hair would grow back faster and much healthier. At that point I was willing to try anything.

Twelve years later Mastey de Paris Traite Sulfate-Free Shampoo is the only thing I will use on my sometimes dry, color-treated hair. I use Mastey hair and skin products because I feel they are the best products available. I have tried a lot of products and haven’t found anything that approaches the quality of Mastey.

Their formulas are simple, contain proteins, amino acids, vitamins, minerals and the Natural Moisturizing Factor. The products are color protecting to help prolong hair color, oil-free and concentrated. Because Traite is detergent free it doesn't lather like most other shampoos. Instead, this rich, luxurious crème shampoo builds into a thick, firm lather, drenching my hair with moisture. My hair is extremely soft, shiny and manageable. The scent is light, fresh and clean. The texture is thick and rich and doesn't weigh hair down or build up.

I am unable to use products that contain, among other things, mineral oil, silicone, petrolatum, mica, titanium dioxide and propylene glycol. Ingredients found in many hair and skin care products. Having extremely sensitive skin, products that contain those ingredients cause me terrible breakouts and redness, even on my scalp. Mastey Traite is not only an ideal shampoo for me, it is the perfect facial cleanser because it is so gentle but cleanses so thoroughly. It leaves my hair and face clean and soft without drying.

As with all Mastey de Paris products they use cruelty free, plant derived, ingredients and no animal by-products. Their shampoos and cleansers are sulfate and sulfosuccinate free.
Mastey de Paris Traite Shampoo retails for $20.00 16 ounces and is available on the Mastey de Paris website and at better salons and spas.

Ingredients: Aqua, Eau, (D. Water), Infusion of (Natural Moisturizing Factor) PCA & Sodium Lactate & Panthenol B5 & Phospholipids, Rice Protein & Cystine Amino Acid, (UVABLOC Color Protectants & Antioxidants) Sunflower Seed Extract & Ascorbic Acid & Tocopheryl Acetate, Sulfoalkyl Amides & Esters, Cocamidopropyl Betaine Glceryl Stearate, Peg-100 Stearate, Methyl Gluceth-20, Cetyl Alcohol, EDTA, Glycereth-20 Cocoate, Benzoic Acid, Parfum (Fragrance).

Dec 29, 2008

Good Skin All Firm Rebuilding Serum

Good Skin All-Firm Serum is a watery, silicone based skin treatment for dull and aging skin. It is meant to be used on clean skin before moisturizing.
The clear, liquid texture starts out a bit greasy but dries to a semi-matte finish. The directions indicate only 2-3 drops of product are needed but I have found it takes a bit more than that to adequately cover my face and throat. Additionally, applying it to slightly damp skin seems to make it spread easier. A bottle last me approximately one month using once per day.

I find this serum to be very similar to Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Protective Recovery Complex in texture. However the scents are very different and while both are silicone based, All-Firm Rebuilding Serum seems to have a higher concentration of silicone which may or may not be a factor to those with acne-prone skin. All-Firm Rebuilding Serum smells very much like the other Good Skin products and reminiscent of Clinique. They are unscented and while not at all offensive they smell somewhat medicinal.

While this product is touted as being non-comedogenic I soon realised while using it that I had an increase of white heads which may or may not have been caused by the high silicone content and/or algae extract as others have indicated both may potentially clog pores in acne prone individuals.

This is one of those products that you may find yourself reaching for when you've had too much sun or wind. It feels soothing to the face and helps with the tight feeling that sometimes comes after cleansing. The ingredients list is rather impressive as this product contains peptides, moisture magnets, minerals, vitamins, anti-oxidants and anti-irritants. The cost of this product is also impressive and one worth considering if you are in the market for a face serum that is well formulated and won't break the bank.

As with all other Good Skin products this is available exclusively at Kohl's in the USA. The suggested retail is $25.00 for a one ounce pump bottle.

Interestingly enough, this products is very similar to the previous version of Prescriptives Super Line Preventer, another Estee Lauder company.

Ingredients: Water, Butylene Glycol, Methyl Gluceth-20, Peg-75, Glycereth-26, Yeast Extract, Peg-8 Dimethicone, Dimethicone, Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract, Saccharomyces/Magnesium Ferment Extract, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Extract, Saccharomyces Lysate Extract, Plankton Extract, Saccharomyces/Zinc Ferment Extract, Algae Extract, Saccharomyces/Calcium Ferment Extract, Acetyl Carnitine Hcl, Sodium Rna, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Sodium Hyaluronate, Acetyl Glucosamine, Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Pantethine, Ethylhexylglycerin, Glycerin, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria), Lecithin Anthemis Nobilis (Chamomile), Peg/Ppg-20/20 Dimethicone, Cyclopentasiloxane, Dipropylene Glycol, Peg-6 Decyltetradeceth-30, Hydrogenated Polyisobutene, Xanthan Gum, Oleth-3, Oleth-5, Peg-8, Oleth-3 Phosphate, Glyeryl Polymethacrylate, Potassium Carbomer, Disodium Edta, Bht, Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben.

Dec 26, 2008

Degree Men Clean Slate Deodorant

Because the all natural deodorant I was using has become difficult to find I elected to try Degree Men Clean Slate Deodorant.

Degree does not seem to work for more than a few hours and certainly does not for 24 hours. I find that I must reapply this before bed or wake up with no odor protection. After any sort of exercise or strenuous activity I must reapply. I am not someone who perspires heavily so this is rather disappointing. I have also noticed that it is drying to the underarm area.

As someone who cannot use an anti-perspirant deodorant I must rely solely on a quality deodorant and I don't think this is the one for me. I will try a few others and see if they work better for me. Otherwise, I might just spend more to buy my all natural mineral salt deodorant that worked so well.

Degree is manufactured by Unilever the same company that manufactures the Axe line of products. It is available at most mass market stores and retails for under $4.00.

Ingredients: Dipropylene Glycol, Water (Aqua), Propylene Glycol, Sodium Stearate, Poloxamine 1307, Fragrance (Parfum), Aminomethyl Propanol, Disodium EDTA, BHT, Yellow 5 (CI 19140), Green 6 (CI 61565).

Dec 24, 2008

Good Skin Tri-Aktiline Deep Wrinkle Filler

Good Skin Tri-Aktiline Instant Deep Wrinkle Filler is a silicone based, paste like, wrinkle filler meant to produce an immediate reduction in the appearance of deep wrinkles. It is packaged in a 1 ounce tube with a fine point and the instructions indicate that a small amount should be patted into the lines until absorbed, twice daily, prior to applying make-up. Reapplying as needed throughout the day.

The main ingredients of note are Gatuline® Expression, Kombuchka™ PH Extract and Argireline®.

Tri-Aktiline can be used anywhere on the face, eyes, nose to mouth, between the brows and forehead lines. I have found it to be most effective on fine lines, less so on deeper lines. The product is extremely thick but dries quickly leaving a super matte finish to the areas applied. Because of this I use a small dap on my nose to prevent shine. It works best if I apply it over my moisturizer and smear it rather than pat it.

The product has a somewhat similar scent to the Clinique line of products, which are also manufactured by Estee Lauder, it is light and unobtrusive and somewhere between a natural and chemical scent.

My experience with this product is somewhat mixed. After using it on and off for nearly a year I have discovered that it works well in some ways and less so in other ways. If you want an immediate effect on deep lines and wrinkles this product may not deliver. However, on fine lines it does a fairly good job of disguising them. It should be noted that on deeper lines and below the eyes the product tends to settle which may magnify the very lines you are attempting to hide.

The product dries extremely matte and may be a bit drying for some. I tend to use it on my mouth to nose lines and get decent results but have noticed I tend to break out in the areas I use it which may be from the high silicone content and silica.

As for long term benefits I haven't as yet noticed a drastic reduction in the appearance of fine lines aftter using it on and off for a year.

Overall, this is a good product that seems to have been thoughtfully formulated. It does not contain mica, or titanium dioxide which causes me painful pimples. I would reccommend this as a cosmetic product that helps minimize the appears of fine lines. I think of it as a face primer with added benefits.

Good Skin is a product line manufactured by Estee Lauder under their Beauty Bank subsidiary and sold at Kohl's department stores. The 1 ounce tube of Tri-Aktiline retails for $39.50.
It is interesting to note Estee Lauder's new Perfectionist CP Wrinkle Reducing Serum, 1 ounce $55.00, shares many of the same ingredients as Good Skin's Tri-Aktiline but in a liquid version. And is also very similar to Prescriptives Super Line Preventer XTreme Lifting Concentrate, 0.44 ounce $38.00.

Ingedients: Water, Dimethicone/Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Hdi/Ppg/Polycaprolactone Crosspolymer, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Ethylene/Acrylic Acid Copolymer, Butylene Glycol, Saccharomyces/Xylinum Black Tea Ferment, Dimethicone, C12-14 Pareth-12, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Algae Extract, Biotin, Beeswax (Cera Alba), Caffeine, Sigesbeckia Orientalis (St. Paul's Wort) Extract, Linoleic Acid, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Phytosphingosine, Cholesterol/Potassium Sulfate, Aminopropyl Ascorbyl Phosphate, Silybum Marianum (Lady's Thistle) Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Acmella Oleracea Extract, Acetyl Hexapeptide-8, Hydrolyzed Fish (Pisces) Collagen, Propylene Glycol Dicaprate, Linolenic Acid, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Cucumis Melo (Melon) Fruit Extract, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Extract, Hydroxypropyl Methylcellulose, Glycerin, Sodium Isostearoyl Lactylate, Glyceryl Polymethacrylate, Acrylamide/Sodium Acryloyldimethyltaurate Copolymer, Zea Mays (Corn) Kernel Extract, Hexylene Glycol, Peg-8, Laurdimonium Hydroxypropyl Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Lecithin, Propylene Glycol Dicaprylate, Trifluoromethyl C1-4 Alkyl Dimethicone, Isohexadecane, Cetearyl Alcohol, Caprylyl Glycol, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Polysorbate 80, Silica, 1, 2-Hexanediol, Xanthan Gum, Isostearyl Lactate, Benzoic Acid, Sodium Citrate, Phenoxyethanol, Sodium Dehydroacetate, Chlorphenesin.

Dec 23, 2008

Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair

Estee Lauder's Advanced Night Repair Protective Recovery Complex has been a top seller since it was introduced over 25 years ago.

The "little brown bottle" contains a silicone based serum with anti-oxidants and anti-irritants the company markets as helping to prevent and reverse the appearance of skin damage.

Among it's many awards was this years "Editor's Choice" 2008 Golf For Women Beauty Award.

Advanced Night Repair is packaged in a square brown glass bottle with a dropper lid. The texture of this serum is a slightly thick, oily, amber colored liquid. The scent is extremely light and rather neutral.

The directions indicate to use 4 or 5 drops on your clean face and throat each night before applying your moisturizer. I have found that applying this to slightly damp skin allows it to spread more evenly. In addition I have found that it requires more than 4 or 5 drops to cover my entire face and throat. Using too much, however will result in it feeling heavy on your skin.

Advanced Night Repair is one of those products that I tend to go back to. I have noticed that it does seem to heal breakouts and reduce irritation. It absorbs rather quickly and doesn't make my skin appear greasy.

Whether it protects the skin from and reverses the signs of aging I cannot say but I can say it makes my skin feel soft and seems to keep the dryness under control. I haven't noticed any effect on fine lines or discoloration but I do feel that it plumps up my skin some.

Despite the fact it is marketed as a night repair serum, I use it during the day under my moisturizer as well as at night.

For those who have the extra to spend this might be a good product to try, especially if you suffer with irritation and dryness. Advanced Night Repair retails for $46.50 for 1 ounce, $73.00 for 1.7 ounces and $120.00 for 3.4 ounces.

Estee Lauder products are available and most higher end department stores. Estee Lauder recently added an updated version of this product to their line-up that contains a richer concentration of ingredients and higher price. It retails for $85.00 for 1 ounce.

Ingredients: Water, Bifida Ferment Lysate, Methyl Gluceth-20, Peg-75, Butylene Glycol, Bis-peg-18 Methyl Ether Dimethyl Silane, Glycereth-26, Cola Acuminata (Kola) Extract, Squalane, Sodium Rna, Sodium Hyaluronate, Retinyl Palmitate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Bisabolol, Pantethine, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Oleth-3 Phosphate, Oleth-3, Oleth-5, Anthemis Nobilis (Chamomile), Caffeine, Choleth-24, Ceteth-24, Xanthan Gum, Tea-carbomer, Octyl Methoxycinnamate, Bht, Trisodium Edta, Benzyl Alcohol, Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben, Yellow 5, Green 5, Red 4.

Dec 22, 2008

Mastey de Paris Moiste Facial Moisturizer with SPF

I have long used Mastey de Paris Moiste Facial Moisturizer and love it. I had been using a more expensive drug store brand but was frequently breaking out and unsure why. Since I used and loved the Mastey de Paris Traite Sulfate-Free Shampoo and Mastey Frehair Conditioner for many years decided I would also try their facial moisturizer. From the very first time I used it; I was hooked and my skin improved dramatically.

Moiste has a thick, creamy, luxurious texture somewhere between that of a cream and lotion, that easily melts into my skin bathing it in moisture and nutrients. It leaves my skin dewey, soft and hydrated. It provides SPF and also contains ingredients found in far more expensive, high-end department store products. The fragrance is an extremely gentle, powdery scent and not at all over powering as so many other European inspired product lines tends to be.

Moiste is not "matte" like a lot of products, but I find that the ingredients that make a product matte are what seem to cause me breakouts. My combo skin is prone to breakouts and thus I must be extremely careful what I use. Mastey de Paris Moiste is a gentle product that doesn't contain "fluff" ingredients that add nothing to the formula. The opaque twist top tube packaging is simple and helps to protect the contents. It leaves my skin looking dewy and fresh, younger.

Some of the ingredients in Mastey Moiste are: Squalane, Sodium PCA, plant derived Pseudocollagen, Panthenol, SPF and Vitamins A and E. All Mastey products contain what they call the Natural Moisturizing Factor.

Squalane, originally found in shark livers but also found in olives, is an ingredient with a similar molecular structure to Vitamin A that appears to help protect the skin.

Pseudocollagen, Panthenol and Sodium PCA help attract moisture to the skin. While Vitamins A and E are anti-oxidants that help fight free radical damage and may help in the prevention of and treatment of wrinkles.

Moiste is a product that actually seems to reduce and prevent redness, spots, discoloration and fine lines all while offering sun protection and helping to soften and smooth my extremely delicate skin. It is very soothing and comforting and actually treats, hydrates and protects my skin. My skin feels better after I use it and I feel better about my skin.

A little Moiste goes a long way leaving my skin softer, smoother and, I feel, much healthier. Mastey de Paris Moiste is not the easiest to find locally so I must order on-line. The Mastey website sells both the skin and awesome hair care lines. Their website also explains the science behind what ingredients they use and why. Moiste costs $28.00 for a 3.38 fl oz tube but I consider it a worth while luxury and must have for my skin.

Many products I have sampled over the years contain talc, mica, titanium dioxide, silicone, mineral oil or petrolatum which unfortunately seems to cause me to break out terribly, especially the various silicones, so even if I initially like them I cannot use them and I always willingly go back to using my tried and true Mastey Moiste which does not contain those ingredients. It also does not contain propylene glycol. I really love Mastey Moiste Facial Moisturizer and have found it one of the few things I can use with my particular skin type. This is my absolute favorite facial moisturizer.

Contains UVA-UVB Sunscreen Octyl Methoxy cinnamate & Benzophenone-3

Ingredients: D. Water, Squalane, Tridecyl Stearate Neopentyl glycol/Dicaprylate-Dicaprate/Tridecyl Trimellitate, 1-Hexadecanol, Peg-20 Methyl Glucose & Methyl Glucose Sesquistearates, Sodium PCA, Urea, Pseudocollagen, Sodium Lactate, Panthenol B5, Retinyl Palmitate Vitamin A, Tocopheryl Vitamin E, Phenoxyethanol, Methyl Paraben, Fragrance.

Dec 19, 2008


Welcome to the new blog, Skin Care Junky, dedicated to reviews on skin, hair and body care products. The goal of this blog is to educate and inform others on what products are available, what they claim and how well they work. User comments are always welcome and very much appreciated. Product suggestions, ideas and your thoughts will help to make this a successful, informative and enjoyable blog. These are our unbiased opinions about these products and, as such, are in no way endorsed by any manufacturer or distributor.