Elba Naturals: N.2 Anti-Acne/Blemish Gel Treatment #Review #ElbaNaturals

When I was in High School, I rarely had any breakouts, so I thought if I got through this stage acne free, I would be safe for life. Wrong! Around my mid 20’s, I started to get breakouts and some pretty bad ones. I changed my diet, drank more water and nothing seemed to do the trick. I then changed my make-up, washed my face more often and even changed my skin care routine and the pimples were just laughing at me. I noticed my acne breakouts fluctuated with stress and some were even connected to medications I was taking. I seized taking certain prescriptions and that help alleviate some of the worse almost cystic-like acne, but I still got breakouts here and there, so I started looking for acne treatments that could help. That ended up being a trip down the longest rabbit hole I have ever encountered! Some spot treatments actually caused more pore blockage while others were so harsh, that I would peel around any healthy skin and the pimple itself would sometimes bleed, so I graduated from having a bump to now having a bump with a scab. Scabby face is not my idea of winning especially when you get one that likes to ooze. Here I was in my mid 20s and had a face of a 13 year old. Not my idea of fun, so I started really reading ingredients and found that 25% of the OTC products work, while 75% my pimples got the last laugh.

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Remarkably, the natural route was the one I never planned on taking but when you are desperate, you will try not only homemade concoctions in addition to anything that resembles them. I found that many of the more natural products that depend on tree oils to extracts derived from plants, tended to work as a prevention measure. I could apply the product and nip most breakouts before they happened.

Elba Naturals is a company that offers a small array of skin care products that is focused on targeting problem areas from aging skin, acne treatment, to eye creams and micro-abrasion. Elba Naturals main goal is finding natural and organic ingredients that are kinder and more gentle to the skin but remain effective. Like the N.2 Anti-acne and blemish solution, which is made up of just 13 ingredients!

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Ingredients (as listed on the website):
(98% Naturally Derived/72% Organic) Ingredients: Deionized Aqua (Water), Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel), Carbomer, Arginine, Wildcrafted Salix Lucida (Salicylic Acid/Willow Bark), Colloidal Silver, Eugenia Caryophyllata (Clove Essential Oil), Ethylhexyl Glycerin, Phenoxyethanol, Organic Aloe Barbardensis Leaf (Aloe Vera Extract), Organic Centella Asiatica (Gotu Kola Extract), Organic Equisetum Arvense (Horsetail Plant Extract), Organic Pelagonium Gravoleons (Geranium Extract), Organic Taraxacum Officinale (Dandelion Extract).

Retail Price Point: Currently sold-out on Amazon, but when in stock one 1 ounce bottle retails for $35.00.

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Verdict:

The directions state to apply the product twice a day for best results, so I substituted the Elba Naturals N.2 Acne product as my spot and prevention treatment. I used nothing else to fight my acne, like no washes with salicylic acid or anything else that would sway the results. When I used the product in the day time, I also tested to see how it works under make-up because this is where I usually find I am more vulnerable when it comes to breaking out. Sunscreens tend to be that friend that comes with a temperament because as much as it is needed to protect my skin, it tends to be the offender when it comes to causing my skin to get clogged pores. I won’t go out without sunscreen, so I have to deal with the results. I applied my skin care products and the Elba Naturals Acne gel treatment to areas I am prone to breakouts, the chin, side of my face and above my eyebrows. I then applied all my skin care products and cosmetics like usual. No issues with application were experienced and my foundation applied without any beading up problems or anything. Through out the day, everything stayed as it did and I was happy that the Elba Natural N.2 acne product was easy to incorporate into my beauty routine. I experienced zero breakouts in my problem areas days after and I continued to use it. I found the Elba Naturals Acne gel treatment to work as well (and even nicer) than my chemical filled counterparts. What I found to be a welcoming sight, was zero peeling of the skin, both from any pimple to the healthy skin around it. It just did not dehydrate my skin like some of the spot treatments on the market tend to do so. The product may be higher in price, as mine is around $10 for a spot treatment but the gel applies smoothly and a very thin film is all that is needed, meaning this product will last longer than a tube of equal size. The gel comes in a brown tinted bottle to help keep the key ingredients effective and because it’s a gel that dries clear, I am not highlighting my acne blemishes with a white cream that even though says dries transparent on the tube…..it never really does. So, Elba Naturals not only was kinder and effective, but it actually works really well at preventing and I prefer avoiding a pimple than trying to just find a solution at treating every bump. I’m all about having the bumps not happen in the first place!

Connect with Elba Naturals at:

I received the above product(s) free of charge from Elba Naturals.  I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion.  My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

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Zakia’s Morocco: Moroccan Black Soap & Moroccan Ghassoul Clay Powder Reviews & Giveaway #ZakiasMorocco

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I received two products from Zakia’s Morocco and when I was accepted into the campaign, I decided to check out their website…….I was stunned at all the products and how well presented the site is. You have a skin issue, they have the products for you. Even though I was unfamiliar with some of the active ingredients, I quickly was able to educate myself and gain some knowledge about what an ingredient provides, application to long term benefits. I like companies that have an “open book” policy and allow the consumer to learn because I appreciate that, versus just being told, “here is a special potion in a jar and just apply it”. The latter always has no evidence supporting the ingredients and is usually a costly lesson to your skin and your wallet. So, I admit I started liking Zakia’s Morocco before anything had even arrived.

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Zakia’s Morocco, Moroccan Black Soap with Argan Oil-

I looked at the jar and it’s a dark colored solution that is more a very dark brown but the hue is maybe 2 shades lighter before black. Not the hue you associate with soap and then I thought about charcoal and again I was wrong! I open the jar and the scent is earthy but not unpleasant. I then realize after reading that the product is made with an olive pulp that is sometimes called “olive pumice”. The pulp is classified as a by-product, meaning it’s the left-over from production and on most times it’s olive oil. Now, the color makes sense! When you produce olive oil, the pulp left is about 50 to 70 percent and some manufactures will then produce a lesser quality oil on the second press or find a second use elsewhere. The olive pulp is rich in antioxidants and nutrients (lipids, oleic acid to Vitamin E), so it’s not in any way just trying to find a use for left-overs. These left-overs will not only feed your skin but are gentle enough to be used for all skin types. I can see why the pulp is used and makes for a great emollient and for exfoliating applications. Zakia’s Morocco then takes this rich ingredient and adds Argan oil and a little salt and it’s really simply created but beneficial.

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Ingredients (as listed on the website): Potassium Olivate, Aqua, Sodium, Potassium Hydroxyde, and Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil (Argan Oil)

Retail Price Point: $24.99 for a jar that has a net weight of 8.82 ounces.

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Verdict:
I used the soap two times a week for a period of 3.5 weeks. It’s gentle and feels good on the skin once you add a little bit of water and you work the lather up between your hands, before applying it to your skin. The Moroccan Black Soap by Zakia’s Morocco can be applied to your face and body, so great for the back and chest area. The soap did not ever over dry or cause patchy areas, it remains gentle but effective because my skin was soft and clean. My feet start getting dry being in sandals during warmer weather and the pool’s chlorine water tends to exasperate it but once I started using the soap on my feet, it not only felt nice but left my skin soft and helped it retain moisture. Even my nail’s cuticle improved. You use small amounts and it’s really a nicer soap for your skin that enriches it but also cleanses it.

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Zakia’s Morocco, Moroccan Ghassoul Clay Powder-

The Atlas Mountain produces a clay that you have probably heard of called Ghassoul or Rhassoul. The clay is rich in minerals that help with skin’s circulation, texture to cleansing but without pulling moisture. The clay actually encourages moisture to build and this is why you see it in many facial masks. The Ghassoul Clay from Zakia’s Morocco, comes in powder form, which I love. I adore this form of application because I don’t have to worry about the product drying out and I can add it to other ingredients and make my own customized mask. The clay powder is not limited to the face, but you can spot treat blemishes to even areas of the body. Ghassoul Clay helps rejuvenate the skin and I always like how gentle it is at removing dead skin cells to build-up, and it’s irritation free. You can also treat your hair by making a loose putty consistency and it will help you regain luster back and also re-balance your scalps health. Things like an over-dry scalp to dandruff tend to correct themselves to even over production of oil, with Ghassoul Clay powder.

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Ingredients (as listed on the website): Moroccan Lava clay

Retail Price Point: $19.99 for an 8 ounce jar.

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Verdict-
Oh, I love it! Let me just get that out of the way because I already loved this clay before but you are giving it to me in powder form? So, I pay for the lava clay and that is it? I’m so there and I was able to use the clay to make my own facial masks to even giving my hands a little rejuvenation treatment. Being able to add other ingredients like oils to boost up the moisture for hands and feet (I even added a little to an avocado to produce a mask) is not something that can be done with other products.  I could use this one product to help my skin’s needs and to suit my “going on right now” issues like a blemish on my nose!  You rarely find the clay in powder form and I see it like when you buy herbs/spices for your kitchen, the pure product alone will always beat any (all salt) mix that is advertised as an all-in-one product. No fillers or anything else with Zakia’s Morocco Ghassoul Clay powder and finally being able to make my own masks to fit my needs no matter the problem, weather, stress level, is something I seek!  You can use it as a spot treatment too for pimples, blackheads, or any surprises you wake up!

!!!Giveaway Alert!!!

Win a gift card to Zakia’s Morocco for $50 by clicking here .  Then click below and start making a list!  Good luck!!

 

Find the time and please visit Zakia’s Morocco and you will love all the products they have to offer:

I received the above product(s) free of charge from Zakia’s Morocco.  I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion.  My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

 

 

 

 

 

 

InstaNatural: Dead Sea Mud Mask #Review #InstaNatural #DeadSeaMask

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InstaNatural is a company which features a large array of beauty products that range from serums, masks to products that target problem areas that suffer from stretch marks, scars to cellulite. You can get all your beauty needs satisfied with InstaNatural, as they have hair products to even supplements! If you sign-up on their site for the Club Discount, you get an instant 15% off. Need to save more? Order $25 worth of beauty products that are guaranteed to work, as they all covered by the InstaNatural 100% Lifetime Satisfaction Money Back Guarantee and get free shipping. Nothing to lose than some fine lines, blemishes and better skin for 2015!

 

InstaNatural: Dead Sea Mud Mask

This product is part of their Body Detoxifiers collection. The mask is 100% Natural and infused with minerals. The product serves two purposes, one to detoxify and secondly, to purify:

  • Pure Dead Sea Mud
  • Organic Shea Butter
  • Organic Jojoba Oil
  • Organic Aloe Vera Juice
  • Organic Calendula Oil
  • Hickory Bark Extract
  • Magnesium
  • Sodium
  • Potassium
  • Calcium
  • All products at InstaNatural are made in the USA and never animal tested

 

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Retail Price Point: $25.77 for a quantity of 16 ounces in a resealable tub (jar)

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Application- I started by washing my face with mild soap or a simple face wash. I then applied a thin layer of mud mask. If applying on the face, avoid the eye and lip areas and any areas you may be sensitive to over-drying. I left the mask on for 20 minutes, however the directions state for 10 to 15 minutes until dry. I sometimes find some mud based masks work well after you shower, so I would apply and then use the water to wash my hands and just literally walk out with the mask on my face until 20 minutes would lapse. It’s my way of multi-tasking! You use warm water to gently remove the mask from the skin and I use wet paper towels for the edges I can’t get to (i.e. nose corners, along the hair line, ect.). This makes sure I do not stain any of our face towels. You then pat dry with a clean cloth and apply a good moisturizer to start nourishing the skin. I read on InstaNatural’s site, that they do not recommend using the Dead Sea Mud Mask more than once a week……..doesn’t get easier when it comes to skin care regimens!

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What to Expect- To avoid over-dryness, I made sure to stick to the directions and used the mask once a week for a 4-week period (I’m still using it and now it’s a main stay and a must have). The first time after leaving the Dead Sea Mud Mask for 20 minutes, I was left with a nice clean surface that was not over dry but had a nice clean sheen. I applied their retinol based moisturizer soon after to make sure I was nourishing my skin’s surface. As the days passed, I noticed my skin continuing to purge (i.e. clogged pores) and my pores looked and felt less (could not feel a bump) congested. On the second week of application, the main difference was that I did not experience any break-outs, which is a little odd for me. I always have a small pimple or little blackhead that is trying to become more than what it really is but I admit that I pick at them, so they get angry with me sometimes :). I had none and no irritations. It was easy to make this mud mask part of my “Sunday Face Clean” day. It’s the day that I try to make up for the week that I did not always have time to wash or primp my face like I wanted to. InstaNatural’s Dead Sea Mud Mask let me reset the clock and pretend I was a good girl about my skincare routine. Pimples, acne, and any blackheads are a thing of the past and so little is needed to cover the surface of your skin. I also used it on my chest on a small blackhead that was indecisive about ruining my intro into 2015! Left it on for 15 minutes (sort of like a spot treatment) and overnight the redness diminished and it was nothing by day two. I also felt that my acne scars lightened and peeled at a quicker pace to reveal a nice skin’s surface that reflected no history of the blemish that resided there before! Easy to use and all the mask asks that you use it once a week……anyone can do that!

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Connect with InstaNatural and their large array of Beauty products at:

 

I received the above product(s) free of charge from InstaNatural.  I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion.  My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

HouseParty/Chatterbox: Mary Kay Acne System, Clear Proof Kit #Review

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I’m at that stage where I pick my battles with my skin. I am not surrendering but realize that some days I fight acne and blemishes, while other days it’s the aging battle. If I fight my battle too hard, I end up with dry and flaky skin, and so far I have not read that flaky lizard skin is the 2014 Fall look. I have tried several OTC brands to even “Spa” and boutique lines. Some work great at the start and then fail, or some just congest my skin from the beginning that I give-up after enduring the “break-out period” while my skin is suppose to adjust to the failed product.

Mary Kay came out with a simple system that surprised me. First, they state that you will see clearer skin in about 7 days. This was based on a 12-week independent clinical trial. Secondly, it does not break the bank. The total kit retails for $45.00. Yes! The entire set and you are ready to go. Want to test the products out, try “The Go Set” that gives deluxe (smaller) sizes for just $20.00. Seems so doable but does it work?

This review will also include my Husband’s results because he is also part guinea-pig like me and I tend to talk (and talk) him into trying stuff with me. He won’t allow a full spa treatment but he is all for annihilating blemishes with me. Maybe the couple that kills pimples together, stays together 🙂

 

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Clear Proof Clarifying Gel (4.5 oz.) Face Wash:

  • Retails for: $16.00

First off the bat, the wash is a clear colored gel that is rated medium when it comes to thickness/texture. The lather is not so much at first “wetness” but once I add a little more by dabbing my fingers in the water, it does start to build a light foam. I find it dries out quick, so keep distributing and adding water as you go. The scent was a little surprising at first……okay, it does not smell great but I also don’t want fragrances adding to my clogged skin. It smells organic and by this I mean sort of like greenery (plants). Not great but it does deliver 2% Salicylic acid and my face feels clean, not stripped after I wash. My Husband was surprised by the scent and his remark was somewhat of a groan and then continued to go forward and use it. Hey, it smells better than some of my “at home” concoctions!

 

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Clear Proof Blemish Control Toner (5 oz.):

  • Retails for: $15.00

I have used toners before and then stop after being tired of the burn and redness that amounts to zero benefits most times. I used the toner and yes it stings slightly if you have a pimple you popped even though you know better but it does feel re-freshening and leaves you with a nice clean surface. Not over drying that you feel someone stretched your skin tight. Once you look at the cotton ball then you will realize the need for it. I also do feel it balances my pH nicely and leaves a nice matte but natural finish. The product also Contains 2% salicylic acid to fight oil or whatever tries to haunt me with more pimples. My Husband’s take was, “ewwww”, to what was left behind on the cotton ball and I am happy to report he finally learned how to fill the cotton ball dispenser all on his own, versus leaving it empty and asking if we are out of them 🙂

 

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Clear Proof Acne Treatment Gel (1 oz.):

  • Retails for: $10.00

The one that fight’s the best fight. A light gel that just fades but not just when it comes to color like with other gels/creams, it fades into the skin like Houdini! I can apply make-up and you can’t notice or feel where the gel was applied. I am fighting pimples incognito and you will be happy with this treatment’s ninja skills. It works, prevents, and also I find it lightens up any previous marks you have from acne. Almost accelerated the “cure time” so much, that my thin scab (from picking) was gone in 6 days. This was a scab I got before from a pimple that had it’s own ninja skills and decided to poke but never show it’s face! I tried popping and it just would not participate but now it’s just a memory in my head and not on my face. My Husband likes it because being a guy, you don’t exactly depend on make-up, so he likes that it prevents any blemishes from even taking place. At 5% Benzoyl Peroxide the product is not so low it does not perform well or so high that it peels and dries your face out.

 

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Clear Proof Oil-Free Moisturizer for Acne-Prone Skin (3 oz.):

  • Retails for: $18.00

I have more moisturizers than I wish to count but the dilemma is always there, do I lather up and break-out or just skip (mostly light pats) and then go to make-up? Solution for me, I mixed this moisturizer with my foundation and got the best application and when I washed my face, no pimples! I was left with a light finish that lasted all day and I love how my skin looks. The surface is smooth and not too matte that I look like I’m getting an early start on Halloween or not too greasy, that I shine brighter than the sun! Perfection. My Husband’s take on the moisturizer……well, he would have to had to stick around because he heard anything lotion-y and he bails. What is it with guys thinking every moisturizer means greasy? On day three I was able to hunt and capture him to convince him to just dab his forehead. He claimed his skin was going to suffocate but I can report the man still sports a forehead, so no skin was lost.

Key Ingredients (as listed from the site):

Salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide are both recognized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and U.S. dermatologists as effective acne-fighting ingredients. So what makes them different?

  • Salicylic acid acts like an exfoliant to promote the easy removal of dead skin cells. As such, it helps keep pores unclogged and reduce the buildup of P. acnes bacteria.
  • Benzoyl peroxide (BPO), on the other hand, is an oxygen-releasing ingredient that kills bacteria. P. acnes bacteria flourish when there’s a lack of oxygen, like in a clogged pore. By creating an oxygen-rich environment, BPO can help reduce the number of P. acnes bacteria that can cause lesions to form. It also can help in dissolving the buildup of dead skin cells.

 

I (we) was very happy and have continued to use the kit.  The “must-haves” would be the toner and the treatment gel for me.  Those two really make the difference but because they all work in unison towards fighting those nasty blemishes that appear at the worst time (like anytime they are welcomed but you know what I mean), I would purchase all 4 as a kit for the best value.  I did see Mary Kay has a “Pore-Purifying Serum” that is part of the Clear Proof line.  I hope to try that in the future too!

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Get your Clear Proof fix with Mary Kay at:

 

 

 

I received the above product(s) free of charge from Mary Kay via ChatterBox, a HouseParty division.  I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion.  My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

 

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