Friday, April 9, 2021

Nitric Oxide Activating Serum: Your one and done serum for your skincare needs!

Happy Friday, dear readers! I hope you had a wonderful week! It's been an intense one around here as my physical therapy activities have changed. I don't mind the extra pain it brings on too much except it amplifies my insomnia which then trickles down to how functional I am during the day. I'm running on caffeine at the moment, but I really wanted to get this post up. While I have a few minutes to myself now, I better get to it and put this post together. Let's do this!

Press Sample

I've been mindful to follow a good skincare routine for the past several years in general, but now that I hit the big 4-0 two weeks ago, I really need to be making some serious commitments to certain products. One such product that wandered into my life is the Nitric Oxide Activating Serum by Pneuma Nitric Oxide, LLC. N1O1 is the first anti-aging skincare that uses a Nobel Prize winning discovery to defy aging skin by correcting the cause of wrinkled and damaged skin. Now I will tell you I am always quick to raise an eyebrow and say "mmh hmm" when I see a brand tout a claim using key words, but this has been backed by 20 years of research and shown effective in four clinical studies. Now that's not something to ignore!

The Nitric Oxide Activating Serum comes in a two chamber package system. Simply pump once from each chamber, mix together, and apply to your clean skin twice a day.

This is what the serum looks like when pumped onto the hand. I've not yet mixed these together, and you can see one side is clear while the other is an amber shade due to the Vitamin C in this portion. While the larger bubble is just from dispensing one of the pumps, notice the small bubbles where the two sections meet together.

Here, I have mixed the serum together and let it sit several seconds. The nitric oxide gas has been activated, which is causing all the bubbling. This is then applied to your skin. As a result of the nitric oxide activation, certain skin types could show a pink tone, but it is temporary and disappears after a few minutes. This was disclosed to me before trying out this product, and I can confirm both: my skin does turn a little pink and it does not last long at all.

After mixing together the serum a little more and letting it sit for about five minutes, the bubbling is present but minimal. I'm not sure exactly how long you can let this sit before applying before it loses effectiveness, but you don't want to mix it and let it sit around in a container, for example.

N1O1 Nitric Oxide Activating Serum can be used as a stand-alone skin serum; it has been shown to:

Decrease wrinkles
Decrease the appearance of pores
Increase skin tone
Improve skin texture
Decrease pigmentation (Including those stubborn spots on my skin)
Decrease oiliness (A note of this below)
Decrease redness, and
Decrease acne

All in as few as four weeks! As I already mentioned, this can be used as a stand-alone product, but it can be used with your already existing skin care products. Due to nitric oxide's ability to improve circulation and get nutrients to the cells of your skin, it will enhance the effectiveness of your current products.

I have really enjoyed trying out this product, but I do want to give a little caution, particularly when it comes to decreasing oiliness in your skin. It is extremely effective at doing so, and I noticed this result after just the first day of use. As a combination skin girl with slight oiliness overall, I did find it left my skin feeling more dry than I prefer. For those that like to use a serum and skip the moisturizer, you may not be able to do this comfortably with this product unless you are already starting out with extremely oily skin. Based on my use, I found my skin could only use it once a day -OR- I had to use a richer moisturizer both day and night; I already used a richer one at night prior to testing out this product. Because this is a luxury skincare product and I'm not fond of a richer moisturizer under my makeup, I have opted to use it just once a day, even if the results may take a little longer to be noticeable. I have noticed a rapid fading of recent hormonal acne-caused dark spots and I have a couple stubborn spots that look less noticeable. As I typically only have one or two pimples pop up around my menstrual cycle I am not the best judge about its effectiveness on decreasing acne, but I can say I didn't have my usual hormonal acne this past cycle. I cannot promise it is due to this product or just a fluke as I haven't used this for months on end, but it is promising!

The N1O1 Nitric Oxide Activating Serum is available for purchase here. It retails for $245, but it is currently on sale for $180 at the time of this post. It is most definitely a luxury skincare product, but if you have the means to try it out and incorporate it into your skincare regimen, it's worth it!

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Saturday, April 3, 2021

Sunny Days and A Zoya Darling Floral Dotticure


Press Sample

It's been a toasty week as we've been in the 90's, and I think we just might hit triple digits at some point this weekend! The plants have been loving the weather and throwing out blooms, and I had to grab the Zoya Darling Collection for another floral manicure.

I really loved my Monet/Impressionist painting-inspired florals from the previous week, but I wanted a more obvious floral look this time around. I opted to go with a quick dotticure version for a fast nail art design.

To create the look, I started off with Zoya Tweedy as my base shade. I then used a dotting tool to create different sized petals using Val and Joyce. I then dotted Mara over Val and Kayleigh over Joyce.

I love dotticures because you really cannot mess them up, and you can come up with some cute designs if you want something other than a randomly sprinkling of dots (which I also love).

Have you picked up Zoya's Darling Collection for Spring 2021? Zoya has also released their new EasyNeon Collection as a preorder for those eager to get some eye-searing brights on their nails! I'm enjoying the spring shades a lot right now, but with our temps soaring, I'm going to want to brights soon!

Until next time, dear readers, have a wonderful day!

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Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Protect Your Skin with All About Soo's Sun Stage Sunscreens

 Happy hump day, dear readers! I hope you've had a wonderful week so far! The temperatures are suddenly soaring this week after several chilly days last week, and I am loving it! No matter what the weather is like, it is still important to wear sunscreen. Obviously it is much easier to remember to do so what it is sunny and bright outdoors. With the weather heating up and more people wanting to be outside (although sunscreen inside is still recommended!), what could be a better time than to share new-to-me sunscreens? Let's do this!

I had the opportunity to try out two sunscreen products from Korean brand All About Soo. Both offer high protection at SPF 50 and conveniently offer a mostly hands-free application.

Sun Stage Mega Cushion SPF 50+ PA++++

Cushion compacts are popular with Kbeauty products, and we're certainly seeing them more here in the US! While I'm not an expert in Kbeauty products, I haven't seen a cushion compact sunscreen before.

As expected, it opens up to the puff applicator on top.

Simply remove the puff, flip the top layer up, and the cushion containing sunscreen is below. A quick dab with the puff transfers the sunscreen on to the puff for easy dabbing on to your face.

This sunscreen is quite sizable and is larger than the size of my palm!

Sun Stage Cool Stick SPF50+ PA++++

Another option is this twist scroll-up sunscreen applicator. The Cool Stick SPF contains Glacial Water and water mint to instantly cool the temperature of your skin.

Simply remove the cap, scroll up the product, and swipe across your skin for both a subtle cooling affect and protection from more of the sun's rays!

The packaging is a little smaller than the cushion compact sunscreen, but it is still quite sizable and fits comfortably in the palm of my hand.

Left: SunStage Cool Stick
Right: Sunstage Mega Cushion Compact

As you can see, not only are the application methods different, the sunscreens look quite different from each other when applied to the skin. The cool stick applies with just the slightest bit of blue-green which blends in with the skin. It leaves a dewy finish to the skin: great for dry and normal skin types, but not so ideal for those with oily skin. That said, it plays well under makeup so the dewy finish can be hidden with cosmetic and powdering options! That makes the cool stick a good option for those who have a darker colour and want to avoid the white cast of many sunscreens.

As you can see in the photo above, the cushion sunscreen does leave a white cast on the skin, so it is more suitable for paler skin tones or those that wear makeup to bring your skin back to its normal colouring. It dries down to a softer, skin-like finish: not dewy but not a harsh matte either. I think this formula would work well for any skin type.

I'm not really sure which of these sunscreens I prefer. I personally prefer the finish of the cushion as a combination skin girl (not to mention the heat is going to make me glisten with sweat very soon), but I'm not too crazy about the white cast. While I do wear makeup, I don't wear it every day. The white cast does make it a necessity! As for the cooling stick, I like not having to worry about the white cast but I don't need extra shine on my face. I suppose a quick pop of powder would mute that dew quickly. I've been using the stick a lot on my upper body lately: chest and shoulders, as I don't mind the glow there!

I was provided both these sunscreens for review/consideration directly from the brand, but if you are US based, you'll have to purchase from a Kbeauty supplier. I have included links about for these specific products from ECosmeticWorld as they carry both of these products, but they can be found elsewhere. I have no affiliation whatsoever with ECosmeticWorld, so please feel free to shop wherever you prefer! I just wanted to provide a convenient location to purchase should you be interested in both of these items.

Have you tried either of these sunscreens from All About Soo? If so, which did you try? If not, what style of application would you prefer to use? I'd love to hear from you!

Until next time, dear readers, have a wonderful day!

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