Health and Fitness, Uncategorized

Updated Skin Care Routine

I posted my skin care routine a while back and now I’ve finished using the acne soap. At the time, my father came back from overseas work so we went to Dutyfree to shop. I haven’t changed much from the routine but here’s my updated morning and night skin care routine:

Morning:

I don’t wash with my foaming cleanser in the morning. I simply rinse my face with water then pat it dry with face towel. Sometimes, I use toner, but most of the time skipped this step in the morning. Then I apply my aloe vera gel as my moisturizer. Sometimes, I completely forget to do this, but, I think it was okay.

Night:

I do a complete routine (like the one in the routine posted before) at night, only this time, I use a different facial cleanser.

After a few weeks, I noticed that my skin improved a lot. I don’t get too oily when I wake up in the morning. I don’t oil up too much during the day as well. My pimples had quicker life cycles and don’t leave marks that are too dark. They don’t last longer than 4 days, unlike before that almost a month would pass and a pimple would grow, will seem to heal then just grow back, sometimes even bigger or just plain worse than before. Sometimes, they would only last a day, even and won’t leave any marks. I think I’m doing my skin care right, or way better than before.

I still get pimples whenever I don’t sleep well, get stressed or forget to change my pillow cover. But, the pimple that show up don’t cause me stress anymore because they’re manageable and easy to fade away.

 

Health and Fitness, Reviews, Uncategorized

Skin Care Routine

I never cared about skin care before. When I was in high school, my mom would usually tell me how oily my skin was so I just sometimes put on some loose powder on. I never had a regular skin care routine, I always had facial wash available for me to use but still there were days that I don’t use it at all. The most that my face would get in those days would be some splash of water during shower. I was so lazy (and dirty, some of you might think), I know, but I thought that I was constantly having pimples because I was in my teenage years and that’s what’s normal. It was easy to dismiss my skin’s condition as something that every teenager experience and convince myself that my pimples, even though they’re constantly there, isn’t severe to be considered acne. I thought I could just wait until I get past this stage.

So I’m way past my teenage years now and I just recently just tried to learn more about skin care, and I already mentioned in my previous posts how this interest started. Others are lucky enough to not mind their skin care habits and still have good, healthy looking skin. I on the other hand is still struggling with constantly having pimples and have a very oily skin. I started following a skin care routine since November last year. I also started trying out face masks and some pimple treatment. I noticed that I don’t get pimples as big, red and inflamed pimples as I have before. They’re smaller in size and sometimes not too bumpy or inflamed. I also noticed that my skin got a lot less oily than I usually normally had. And so, I’m sharing with you my current skin care routine since it’s working out well for me so far.

Step 1: Cleansing

Iimg_6029 tried using what I always used before more regularly but it didn’t work quite well for me. I usually try Pond’s new cleansing products. I used to stick to their whitening facial foam just because it’s packaged in pink tubes. Recently they introduced a new pimple fighting foam, so I tried using it regularly for around a month. It still didn’t do what it promised, which was supposedly to rid your skin from pimple causing dirt, which helps you get rid of current pimples and should in turn serve as prevention from new ones to emerge. I finished up the small tube that I got and decided to try other brands. Right now I use Pasjel’s Oh My Egg Acne Formula for cleansing. I foam it and leave it on my skin for a minute before rinsing it off. I do this step twice if I went out or I feel I was exposed to extra dirt that day.

Step 2: Toning

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I used to use Pond’s Pinkish White Toner before this one but I don’t think it did anything if not cause another pimple to emerge. I thought it wasn’t right for my skin type (which I didn’t consider before when choosing skin care products), so I decided to switch before using it all up. I saw Nivea Aqua Effect Mattifying Toner one time when I went to the grocery with my mom one time and decided to try this one out. I don’t exactly understand what toners do, but they say that it prepares your skin for the next steps. I notice that my face really was less oily after using it.

Step 3: Moisturizing

I img_6031only put day creams on my face before, but looking back, I think putting it caused pimples as well. I used to put Pond’s White Beauty Day Cream, but when I got more observant with what happens on my skin and noticed it, I stopped. I think even its Acne Prone formula had the same effect on me (I’ll give this one a second chance one of these days). I read somewhere that cream moisturizers are too much for oily skinned people to take, which may have cause the pimples to show up when I put them. I learned that aloe vera gel gives moisture and soothes the skin. Right now I use the Nature Republic Aloe Vera Soothing Gel as a moisturizer. I pat it all over my face after toning.

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These 3 steps is what I do in the morning and at night before I sleep. I squeeze in a few more steps whenever I feel a bit less lazy, notice a few new bumps or just wanted to pamper myself. I learned that exfoliating is a must, at least 2 to 3 times a week. For that, right now, I use St. Ives Blemish Control Apricot Scrub once every two days, at night after cleansing and before toning. I gently scrub my problem areas with it and leave it on for around 45 seconds before washing it off with tap water. I noticed that my face becomes smoother after regularly doing this. Some people get sensitive though and said that this only did harm for them, but it’s working quite well for me. There’s a warning at the back of the tube anyway, and I think you won’t over dry your skin if you don’t overdo it and if you make sure you moisturize after.

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I also recently learned about witch hazel and how it’s good in promoting skin healing, reducing inflammation, and is a natural antioxidant. Many says it has other benefit as well, and is really good for the skin. I found this The Beauty Bakery Clarifying Witch Hazel Facial Mist and bought this online. I added it to my routine and spray it on after toning and before moisturizing.

I also put on mask at least once a week. They say that clay masks are best for oily skin. Right now, I’m using Innisfree Super Volcanic Pore Clay Mask and put it on for around 10 minutes after toning and before moisturizing. It has a really relaxing and cooling effect, and my skin feels soft and smooth after. I’ll do a review on this product soon.

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As I have mentioned, I think this routine really helped in keeping my face calmer in terms of oil production. I usually get pimples whenever I forget to change my pillowcase or if I don’t get enough sleep, and they used to be really red and inflamed. I think my skin care routine helped keeping these pimples way smaller and less inflamed (hurt less too!) than what I get before. I know what I do is not (yet) perfect for me, but I feel that these helped me a lot. I’m still planning on trying out other ways to keep my skin healthy and I will be working on ways to keep the routine as simple as I can and still get it to work. I don’t really like spending too much on this, money and time wise. Although, I really enjoy using facial masks, it gets too expensive doing this regularly in the long run. I want to eventually just put mask to relax from time to time. I also want to learn and switch to making my own mask and DIY them to cut the cost.

Health and Fitness, Uncategorized

Pimple Conscious

I mentioned in a past entry that I recently got conscious about my face because I never had it perfectly clear of pimples. Really, I don’t remember a time when I didn’t have at least one or two medium sized ones, and a few really small ones (growing). I get really big ones whenever the time of the month comes. And whenever one of them start to subside or heal, another one starts to grow. I’m way past the puberty stage now but I still have at least a few pimples all over my face, all the time.

I didn’t considered my condition severe, and I thought having it worse is what’s considered acne. So, I just went on with my life and didn’t really care about it. My parents usually tease me about it, but I only shrug it off and jokingly tell them, “I’m already beautiful as it is, imagine if I don’t have them. Too many suitors might show up and bug me all the time.” I never liked make-up though because aside from feeling so heavy on my face and being uncomfortable when wearing them, I was afraid that wearing them will cause my skin problem to become worse.

Now that I’m engaged, my parents and fiance’s teasing kind of had an effect on me. I now want to do something about it and dream of having a perfect skin on my wedding day.

Last October, I started to be more conscious about pimples showing on my face and started taking steps towards a hopefully better skin. I started treating my pimples with Quick Fix Pimple Eraser that I got from Watsons. Since I’m putting it on pimples twice everyday, I got to monitor not only the changes that happen on the pimples I’m putting cream on, but also when they appear. Here are three things that I just realized and noticed (why didn’t I know these things before? XD):

One, my sleeping habit is the main reason why I always have pimples on my forehead. I realized that in the few couple of days that I slept at around 12 midnight and got a long and satisfying sleep (at least around 7 hours per night), my forehead got clear of pimples (even the tiny bumps are gone during this time). And when one day I ruined this beautiful almost forming habit, a large pimple and a few tiny bumps showed up (on my forehead). I’ve always been a late sleeper, even since I was in high school. Then, I would sleep at around 1 am, and would wake-up at 5 am to get ready for school because my school service arrives at around 6:15 am. This sleeping habit got worse when I entered college. I got different class schedule everyday, so I never formed a regular sleeping habit. At times I sleep at 2 or 3 in the morning and would have to wake up at 6 am, there are times that I have little to no sleep at all.

Two, accumulated dirt on my pillow and pillow case causes large pimple on my cheek to grow and stay for long. It takes longer to subside and heal and, just when I thought that it will finally go away, it reemerges. I watched a bunch of “how to get rid of acne” videos and read a couple of articles on it, too. I heard this a few times, and I realized that I never actually washed and cleaned my pillows and I seldom change my pillow cases. And so, I bought a new pillow and pillow cases, washed and cleaned my old ones, and now change my cases regularly (I do mine weekly, but some others do it everyday). Over time, I noticed that a pimple forms a few days after I change the case which tells me that it’s dirty and I should flip or change it. I also realized that this large cheek pimple show on the side that touches my pillow when I sleep. When I change side, the other one heals and a new one forms on the other side that now touches the pillow. When I hugged a pillow when I slept and it touched my chin (maybe repetitively) during sleep and its case wasn’t newly changed, a pimple also formed on my chin (it healed quickly when I avoided having facial contact with the pillow that I hug). They say that silk fabric don’t absorb oils, dirt and sebum unlike other kinds of fabric. I’m going to buy a silk pillow case soon, so that I can use pillow cases for longer (or at least just last a week without growing a new pimple because of my pillow case).

Three, I can’t only rely on acne treatment products. Creams, facial wash, masks or whatever product that says it will remove your acne can only do so much. They may help fasten the life span of a pimple. They may help fasten the amount of time it takes to erase the dark spot it left when it healed. They may remove all the dirt, sebum and oil that cause pimple that are currently sitting on your face. They may help your recently popped pimple to heal faster. But they will not be able to prevent an acne to show up if you don’t keep things that touches your face clean or you don’t get proper and enough sleep. I think, to actually achieve a healthy, glowing skin, a lifestyle change should also be in order. It’s true, prevention is better than cure.

I’m excited to learn more about myself and be able to figure out more about keeping my skin healthy and acne free as I try new habits, experiment on products and constantly monitoring my habits and skin health patterns. I read that eating dairy products causes pimples as well, and I love fresh milk, butter and cheese. I’ve yet to do something about this one because butter and cheese just make food tastier and more delicious! This one will be harder to address. I hope I can take small steps about this soon. We’ll see, and I’ll tell you about the result next time. 🙂

Do you also struggle with pimples? Have you solved this skin problem a long time ago? Tell me your story in the comment section bellow.

Health and Fitness, Uncategorized

Flexibility Progress Report

As I’ve mentioned before, I’m working on my flexibility, which is why I’m posting these. I took these last Thursday and will continue to take pictures of me in these positions to see my progress.

It’s not obvious in pitures but I can feel that my splits are a little wider than before. My bridge really improved though. It’s easier for me to lift myself up these days and I can hold the position longer. I can even look at the floor now, without worrying that I fall flat to my face and crack my neck for it.

I can also feel the improvement with my flexibility when I do pole tricks. I can hold some tricks with more ease and gracefullness now.

  

  

  

  

Health and Fitness, Uncategorized

Strength from Pole Dancing

I started attending pole classes on the first day of February last year. Since then, I really believe I’ve learned and gained a lot from it. Some of them, I already mentioned in my previous posts, but I’ll focus on strength in this one.

Although I still have so much that I’ve yet to learn in pole dancing, I already feel like I have gained a lot of strength from it. And now, I notice that I’m able to use it in my everyday life.

Walking Padfoot

One of the things that I think I wouldn’t be able to do if it weren’t for the strength I got from pole dancing is being able to walk my dog and handle his leash pulling. Padfoot is a medium sized dog who weighs 17.5 kg when we last checked. With my habits before I started being conscious of my fitness, I’m sure I wouldn’t be able to develop muscles that would be able to stop him when he pulls. I wouldn’t have the arm strength I need and a stable stance to keep us both from moving. My dog would surely be able to drag me which will hinder me from from being able to discipline him.

Lifting, Carrying and Bottle Opening

Another thing that I noticed was that I now exert a lot less effort in lifting heavy objects and in opening new bottles. When I was younger, I remember having to have somebody else remove bottle caps for me. My Papa and boyfriend usually do it for me then. Sometimes, I also ask my Mama to open them for me but there some kinds that are too tight for her. But now, I’m the one who’s opening bottle caps for someone else. It really feels good and it boosts my pride whenever I open a cap easily. Unlike before, even after exerting all of my effort in twisting, doing everything that I can to add more friction to help me open the lid, after giving all my strength to be able to twist it, I still fail. I believe tham I’m now able to do this because my grip impoved in pole dancing. I practice grip control a lot in doing tricks and in spinning. Then, one time last week, I was trying to move our sofa and I was surprised to have lift it easily. I can now also help in lifting and moving other heavy objects around the house. I find these things easier since I’m constantly lifting myself up in pole, and I got used to carrying weight.

Singing Higher Notes

One of the things I love is singing. I know before that exercising could really help in projecting my voice but since I don’t to it regularly, don’t really feel the difference. Since I started pole dancing, I tried to see to it that I exercise even for a little regularly. If I can, I do it three to four times a week. My core strength improved a lot along the way and I’m now able to support my body better in unusual positions. Because of this core strength, I also noticed that I’m more comfortable in reaching high notes when I sing. I used to struggle and strain my throat a lot before whenever I try to sing challenging songs. Although I’m still not a biritera (birit is not really my style), I can now reach higher note with much ease. I think its because of the core strength I gain in pole fitness that gives my diaphragm an extra push and support.

Health and Fitness, Uncategorized

Flexibility

I don’t have much physical activities at home because I’m an only child and the adults were all so protective and cautious that they always panic whenever I try something a bit daring. I can’t climb, they said I should just ask for the things that I can’t reach and they will bring it to me. I can’t try splits, tumbling, bending, jumping, running, like most other kids do. They were afraid that I’d fall, I get bruised, I bump my head somewhere, and I learned to be scared to get hurt, too, so I stopped trying those things.

Then my parents enrolled me in ballet classes. I always see children learn ballet and I watch them through a large glass window in a mall. My parents noticed and asked me if I wanted to try. So I did. I always imagined myself in a tutu, and I got all excited when I learned that I’ll be joining those classes that I used to just watch. I was around 5 years old then, and my classmates were just 3 and 4.

In class, I felt left out because there a lot of exercises that I can’t do. I cant split, I can’t bend, I can’t bridge, I can’t arabesque. My classmates were all younger than I was and they can do much more than I can. Soon, my grandparents got worried that my bones would break because of ballet, so I stopped.

I never tried to be flexible ever since. I just accepted that I wouldn’t be able to do some things. I was part of the school dance club in highschool and we were taught some stunts. My mom always reminded me to take extra care and just not try anything dangerous. Growing up, I already learned to be afraid of falling, breaking a bone or even hurting for a bit, so my mom’s reminder just became an excuse for me to avoid learning to do stunts. I had really small tolerance in pain, and I saw some friends fall badly, break legs and wear casts at school, my avoidance were all justified. “I don’t want those kind of things to happen to me, I’ll just not try anything,” I said to myself.

Good thing, information is now easy to acquire. I learned that I can still practice and eventually be flexible, although now it will be harder for me, I know it’s still possible if I only try. I’ts never too late to try and do something, and this I learned watching my boyfriend train for his races and for triathlon. I can search online, watch instructional videos and learn how to safely and properly stretch without breaking a muscle or a bone. So now, I’m trying to bend and stretch so that someday I will be able to do the things that I thought I would never be able to do before.

So to see my progress, I started to take pictures of me while trying to do the splits and bridges. Someday, I will be looking at these pictures and remind myself how much I tried and be proud that my hard work paid off. I actually am already proud that I can now do these, since I was a lot worse when I first started pole dancing.


  
  
  
  
  

Health and Fitness, Uncategorized

Own Pole

My father put up poles for me (and a friend) at home. I can now practice more frequently and without having to brave the traffic of Manila. I stopped attending classes last October and was only able to practice when these poles were up. My niece joined me which make my practice even more enjoyable. It’s also good to have someone to practice with so we can look after and spot each other on the pole. I lost strength because of my break but I’m now trying to get my strength back.

Here are some pictures of one of our practices and a video of me practicing pole trick flow.



I’m planning to attend class again after mastering the tricks and spins that I already know. I think attending class is still good especially when trying to learn new tricks because in class, you have an expert to spot you, correct what you do wrong and really guide you. These are important because trying tricks that you are not yet comfortable with may result to slips or other accident. Having someone to guide and spot you would be a great help for your form and also your safety.