Saturday, July 21, 2018

BEAUTY: PCA Skin Product Review


The team over at PCA Skin sent me several rounds of goodies to help me get my skin in tip-top shape this spring/summer. Full disclosure: My skin has changed dramatically over the last two years.  Previously, I didn't wear foundation - I had no need to. I had not one visible facial mark/scar/blemish/pore/nor any acne. I used to wash my face with a mild bar of soap - once a day! How I miss those days! Since my skin has morphed into a new normal, I had been searching for a daily routine that would help to normalize it. Month after month I tried product after product to no avail. Flawless skin continued to evade me. 
When I received products from PCA Skin, I wasn't particularly excited to try them because I figured that they would be just like all the rest...However, I read a few blog posts that changed my mind, and actually made me feel excited to give the products a try. 
I often take new skincare products with me on vacation  (samples I've recently collected, usually a nice clay mask, facial exfoliant, etc.,.), this time was no different.  I began using PCA Skin products just before I went to Costa Rica in June, I continued to use them while I was on vacation, and I am still using them to date. The total time that has elapsed is about two months.
Here's the breakdown of the products that I received and my experience in using them:
PCA Skin Facial Wash
PCA Skin advises that this is:
A gentle cleanser that removes makeup, oil, dirt and environmental impurities.
Hydrates and exfoliates the skin while cleansing
Provides skin soothing properties
Does not leave skin tight or dry after cleansing
It includes the following ingredients: 
Lactic acid – naturally found in milk and sugars, this ingredient moisturizes and smooths the skin.
Aloe vera leaf juice – a purifying ingredient that softens and soothes the skin.
Allantoin – an antioxidant that soothes the skin.
Willow bark extract – calms and soothes the skin.
My experience: I found this to be a very gentle yet efficient facial cleanser. It can remove a full face of makeup, yet is gentle enough to use when I have no makeup on at all. To aid in the removal of a full face of makeup, I use an electronic silicone facial brush. I really like the way this cleanser makes my skin feel - clean - yet not drying at all. After I wash my face in the mornings and at night, my skin feels smooth and supple.

PCA Skin advises that this is:
A serum containing a specialized blend of antioxidants and moisture-binding ingredients to leave skin soft, plump and hydrated. A novel serum containing a specialized blend of antioxidants and moisture-binding ingredients to leave skin soft and ultra-hydrated. Essential for dry skin, yet beneficial for all skin types.
Provides hydration with a weightless finish
Leaves skin soft, plump and hydrated
Boosts moisture while decreasing inflammation
It includes the following ingredients: 
Glycerin – an ingredient that holds moisture in the skin for exceptional hydration.
Sodium hyaluronate – holds 1,000 times its weight in water, playing an important role in skin hydration.
Sodium PCA – holds 250 times its weight in water, playing an important role in skin hydration.
My experience: I use this serum in the mornings, right after I wash my face, and prior to applying moisturizer. I'll be honest, I'm not exactly sure what it does for my skin, but I will say it feels absolutely wonderful when I apply it, almost like silk!

PCA Skin ReBalance Moisturizer
PCA Skin advises that this is:
A nourishing, light moisturizer that hydrates, calms and soothes normal to sensitive skin.
Hydrating formula helps keep skin calm and balanced
Powerful antioxidant protection
Unique, feather-light texture
A nourishing, light moisturizer that hydrates, calms and soothes normal to sensitive skin.
It includes the following ingredients: 
Borage seed oil – calms the skin.
Evening primrose seed oil – calms the skin.
Vitamin E – a powerful antioxidant that strengthens and protects the skin.
Niacinamide – hydrates the skin.
My experience: This is an excellent moisturizer. With consistent use, I notice that I no longer get flare ups of dry patches of skin. I apply this in the mornings, right after I apply the hydrating serum.
PCA Skin Hydrator Plus Broad Spectrum SPF 30
PCA Skin advises that this is:
A nourishing moisturizer and sunscreen specifically formulated with moisturizing key ingredients for dry or dehydrated skin.
Offers hydration and broad spectrum UV protection in one product
Contains the important antioxidants silybin, from milk thistle and caffeine for advanced skin protection
It's also:
Recommended by the Skin Cancer Foundation for daily use
A nourishing moisturizer and sunscreen specifically formulated with moisturizing key ingredients for dry or dehydrated skin.
It includes the following ingredients: 
Octinoxate and octisalate – absorbs and filters UV rays.Zinc oxide – provides broad spectrum UV protection by reflecting, scattering and absorbing UV rays.
Sodium hyaluronate – holds 1,000 times its weight in water, playing an important role in skin hydration.
Silybin and caffeine – important antioxidants that protect the skin against UV damage.
My experience: Previously I did not wear any SPF products. This is the first one that I've used consistently, as in daily. When I got my very first professional facial last month, the esthetician advised that I should wear sunscreen following my treatment. I followed her instructions to the letter, and have not missed a day wearing it ever since. So what is this doing for my skin? Not sure! But, I can say that it goes on in a creamy, almost milky texture, and then appears to dissolve on top of my skin. I apply this immediately after using the moisturizer. Note: If you apply too much, it will dry with a white, somewhat cakey appearance. A little goes a long way! I use less than a dime size amount, it covers my entire face and neck.
Okay Babes, let's info share, have you tried PCA Skin's products? 
What products do you use in your daily routine?
Until next time, 
Xx 

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

The Acquisition of Shorts

sunnies: HERE| lipstain: HERE| necklace: HERE| romper: c/o HERE| sandals: old| straw bag: vintage, thrifted

Hey there! Not too long ago I declared that 2018 would be 'The Summer of Shorts'. Now that we've landed smack in the middle of July, I decided now is the perfect time to conduct a self assessment, actually let's call it a progress report. 

Before I begin, in the event that you're new to my blog, despite being a plus size/full figured woman --> I ❤ wearing shorts! It has taken time for me to develop full appreciation for my body (flaws and all), but now that I have it, well the rest is history Babes! 
When I look back on my shopping habits over the decades (clearly I must've started shopping as an infant 😁), I've always heavily gravitated towards dresses. As a result dresses make up the majority of my wardrobe.  Within the last 10 years or so, I developed an increasing appreciation for wearing/styling separates, which include skirts and shorts. There are far more choices in my size to choose from now than there was in years past. Whoo hoo! 
However, let's get to it - how am I fairing in the acquisition of shorts for 2018? I'll let the facts speak for themselves:
Q: Do shorts now make up a considerable part of my personal inventory?
A: No. Although my love for wearing shorts continues to grow, my current inventory levels are quite low in comparison with the amount of dresses that I own.
Q: How many additional pairs of shorts should I add to my wardrobe?
A: I think starting with 10 is a good number. Rompers are also included, they are wonderfully versatile (like the one I am wearing in today's post).
Q: Have I created an action plan to meet my goal?
A: I have several specific ideas in my mind, but I plan to commit them to paper no later than tomorrow. Writing things down in detail always helps me to execute a plan properly😜
Until next time,
Xx

Monday, July 16, 2018

HELLO Summer

sunnies: similar HERE| top: similar HERE| skirt: old| suede sandals: HERE| straw bag: similar HERE

Summer 2018 came in with a BANG - and by a BANG I mean it came crashing through with an I N T E N S E  heatwaveπŸ’₯ I freely admit, I am an advocate for summer living all year long, however the 1st heatwave of summer 2018 totally caught me unaware! It's true, we're in mid-July, the time of the year when temperatures are supposed to soar up up and away. This is my favorite season!!! Nonetheless, while I've been out and about trying to live my best life, this heat has been draining all of my energy in brute force! For example: Every time I spend any amount of time walking around during the hours of 12-6p, I instantly feel completely tapped out, and in desperate need of a nap. A few things that help me to feel refreshed along with regular naps (a fav pastime): Drinking lots of water, eating sweet fruit (watermelon & cherries come to mind), rooftop siestas, fresh ice cream, and maxing out the AC.
Over to you: How are you managing heatwave season?
Until next time,
Xx

Saturday, July 7, 2018

Surviving SUMMER

Bikini top: c/o HERE (ON SALE)| Bikini bottom: c/o HERE (ON SALE)
Earrings: H&M | Lip stain: HERE (94/Cherry Moon)

Los Angeles is smack dab in the middle of our very 1st heatwave of SUMMER 2018! To put that into context, temperatures reached 109 degrees in my neighborhood yesterday πŸ”₯πŸ”₯πŸ”₯πŸ”₯πŸ”₯
When I'm not soaking up ALL of the central air, I like to cool off at the pool or better yet --> the beach! However the beach was packed, everyone had exactly the same idea πŸ˜„  I went for the next best thing: Lounging poolside, reminiscing on cooler days... PSA: This watermelon print bikini is my favorite swimming suit thus far (top HERE\bottoms HERE)!!! I actually wore it several times while I was in Costa Rica last month. I took five suits with me, but this was my ALL TIME FAVORITE!!! Why didn't I take pictures of it in CR, with all of its breathtaking backdrops? I didn't have my professional camera with me 😨
I've gotten spoiled, low quality pictures just don't cut it for me anymore. Sooo, I opted not to take any pictures wearing it and instead seized the opportunity to live & breathe the moment. Pure BLISS. Ahhh...it was such an amazing trip!
Nonetheless, I've digressed, back to this swimming suit- it is a two piece set. I want to emphasize that because in some pictures it may look like a one piece suit 😊
The brand description reads: A playful watermelon pattern paints a push-up bikini top that's sure to turn heads; A playful watermelon pattern on a high waist fit is the perfect way to welcome the warm weather. 
The top features:
Maximum padded underwire cups with extra removable inserts (I removed them, because I have built-in extras)
Removable/adjustable straps (Very helpful)
Inner hook-and-eye strap for added support
Side boning smoothes you out
I followed the size guide that is provided HERE, and ordered size 1X. Truth be told, I could have went with an 0X, the usual size that I order with this brand... NOTE: The top is a bit tricky, like it is loose on my torso and shoulders, BUT - I could have used more coverage/support in the bra area... Such is the curse of a full bosom, LOLLL!
Until next time,
Xx

Friday, July 6, 2018

Off & On

Earrings: Sold out, similar HERE|Linen blazer: Nordstrom, similar HERE (ON SALE!)
2 piece polka dot set: c/o Top HERE + Culottes HERE| Blue shoes: Similar HERE & HERE 
Bamboo purse: HEREHERE

Was I the only one struggling with a return to the office this week after the 4th? πŸ‘€ It was so odd that the holiday fell smack dab in the middle of the week! I'm in the middle of several important projects at work, taking the entire week off simply was not an option. To ease my disappointment, I decided to make the best of it, which of course includes what else, DRESSING UP- LOL! I snagged this two piece set c/o HERE & HERE a little over a month ago, but this was my very first opportunity to wear it out. I sized up because I wasn't familiar from firsthand experience with how the sizing ran with this brand. You'll be happy to know that I found sizing to be true to size, I will have these pants altered, and order my regular size the next time around. I kept the look simple, styling the se with a white blazer, blue bauble earrings + satin sandals, and one of the bags that I snagged from the Cult Gaia Sample Sale (I chatted about it in detail on my Instagram Stories) here in Los Angeles 😍
Until next time Babes,
Xx