Tag Archive | How to patch test

iHerb haul #1 – Skincare oils!

Hello beautiful people ♡

I recently did a post on How you can purchase from iHerb, a site which I am so in love with now!. I promised you a post on my haul within some days. So here are the four items I bought and their reviews based on my usage since Dec 2013 (Click on the links to go directly to the product on the site) :

1) Argan oil by Acure Organics – The first thing I searched for on this site, is Argan oil. I have heard people rave about it for so long. There are three really known brands that sell 100% organic Argan oil (according to some survey). They are Josie Maran, Eden Allure and Acure Organics. So I decided to give Acure a try. I love the packaging. A beautiful Argan tree printed on recyclable packing.

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The oil itself comes in a glass bottle with a dropper. It’s golden yellow in color and has a nutty/woody kind of smell. Some might say it’s harsh/very strong but I loved it!. Anyways, the smell dissipates within seconds. So, even if you don’t like it, you don’t have to worry about the smell lingering on.

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It’s very lightweight and gets absorbed fast into the skin. It doesn’t feel greasy at all. I can say my skin absolutely loves this oil. It leaves my skin looking radiant and feeling soft. I use 4 drops on my face and 2 drops on my neck. A little goes a long way with oils. I highly recommend you try Argan oil. What I loved about this brand is that the Argan oil is sourced from a woman’s cooperative in Morocco and is sustainably harvested to protect the bounty of the Argan Tree.

Price: $12.94 (AED 47.53) for 30ml.

Just FYI, recently at Dubai Shopping Festival, my sister in law and mom bought Argan oil from the Morocco pavilion. It’s a darker color and smells of roasted nuts. I disliked it’s smell very much. Mom says it works really well on her skin. I swatched it. It doesn’t get absorbed into skin really fast and feels heavy. Here is the (plastic) bottle that they bought by the way:

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It costs AED50 for 100ml

General info about Argan oil

  • Argan oil is considered to be ‘Liquid gold’
  • It’s loaded with vitamin E, antioxidants, stimulates skin renewal and promotes skin’s elasticity
  • Protects against sun damage
  • Softens skin
  • Helps against acne and skin infections
  • Regulates sebum production in people with oily skin
  • Keeps nails healthy, shiny and strong
  • Perfect for all skin types

2) Avocado oil by NOW Foods : It was December that I placed the order on iHerb. Winter time in UAE. It’s that time of the year when my skin leans the most towards ‘dry’. That’s what made me choose Avocado oil. It’s so hydrating, healing and nourishing.

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It comes in a plastic bottle with a flip open lid. Avocado by itself is a source of vitamin E. The oil is very thick and heavy. It looks very oily when applied on to your skin. It doesn’t have a distinctive smell. I use 4 drops on my face and 2 drops on my neck. During cold mornings, I slather my face with this oil and it helps my skin fight dryness. When applied overnight, by morning the oiliness is gone because it’s all absorbed by the skin. It’s truly hydrating and I highly recommend this product to you.

Price: $5.34 (AED19.61) for 118ml.

General info about Avocado oil

  • Loaded with vitamin A, D and E
  • Has Omega 3 and Omega 6 in it
  • Helps reduce age spots
  • Fights against sun damage
  • Increases the amount of collagen in skin, thus promoting skin’s elasticity (which deteriorates as we get old)
  • Nourishes dry, damaged and brittle hair because of it’s humectant (it can attract and bind water) properties
  • It is anti inflammatory
  • Extremely moisturizing
  • Best for dry skin but suitable for all skin types

3) Rosehip oil by Aura Cacia : I read about Rosehip oil when my friend Kate of Sleeping Bootay did a post on it. I wanted to try it then. Trilogy is the best brand selling Rosehip oil but Aura Cacia is well known too. So that’s what I bought. The product came in a dark colored glass bottle with a pump, which I thought was so neat and hygienic.

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This oil is full of Vitamin A and C. In fact, this is a natural product similar to Retin A, retinols or retinoids. It brightens up the skin.  I love the glow it gives. It’s yellow in color, because of the presence of natural beta-carotenes (which gives carrot it’s bright orange color), without any artificial colors added to it.

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The smell of this oil… Oh boy!. Where do I begin?. Lets start with a little story, shall we?. Rosehip oil is extracted from rose hips, which are the fruits of rose plant. It looks like this :

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Obviously I thought it would smell heavenly like roses. But it couldn’t be further from the truth. It smells like fish oil!. Disgusting right?. Well, at first I thought, did my bottle go rancid?. But no. I ran a search and found other people finding it the same. So yeah, it’s normal. But the smell dissipates within seconds. So I can live with that!. I use 2 pumps of it on my face and neck. Also normally rosehip oil is sourced from roses in Chile. Aura Cacia’s rosehip oil is also from Chile. That’s one reason I chose this brand.

Price : $9.34 (AED 34.31) for 30ml.

General info about Rosehip oil

  • Helps fight premature aging
  • Works against fine lines and wrinkles
  • Has essential fatty acids in them
  • Rejuvenates skin
  • Fights age spots
  • Helps restore brittle nails
  • Should be stored in the refrigerator
  • Best for all skin types

4) Organic Pomegranate lip balm by Sierra Bees : This is the freebie I chose. I love pomegranate. So when I saw this organic lip balm with pomegranate oil it, I found it interesting. It also has extra virgin olive oil, sunflower seed oil and vitamin E in it, all of which are organic. It also contains beeswax and looks exactly like it. It’s a dull color. It’s so nourishing and leaves your lips smooth and pampered.

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Price : Free item. But if you order it a second time, you got to pay the full price which is $1.95 (AED 7.16) for 4.25 gms.

Shipment

I had chosen DHL for this shipment. This was probably the fastest shipment I ever got. Within six hours of placing the order, I received an email saying it’s all been shipped!!. I was wonder struck. What an amazing service from iHerb. Within three days it had made it’s way from US to UAE. It reached here in the night and as such it was the next day morning (Fourth day) that I received it. I am just in love with their tracking service. Within those 3 days of transport, there were 15 updates. I could see where all the package was going through, in so much detail. It was so exciting watching it’s progress, knowing it’s getting closer to me!

Everything was carefully packed in a cardboard box marked ‘Fragile’. The rosehip oil was bubble wrapped separately.

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More info

  • Though I do not break out normally, it was a first for me to apply any kind of oil on my face. So I didn’t want to take a chance and thus did a 3 day advance patch test. I suggest you do the same too before trying any of these oils.

  • One of the main reasons I chose all of these oils is that they are multi- purpose. You can use them on your face, body and hair!. I use them mainly on my face (on lips too but never tried around eyes), occasionally on my hair and rarely on my body.

  • These three oils are beneficial in similar ways but still I bought them all because it’s good to treat skin with different products.

  • You can use these oils morning or night. However, I prefer using them at nights except for Avocado oil which I also use on cold mornings.

  • These oils can be used as a moisturizer by themselves or be layered just underneath a moisturizer or mixed with a moisturizer and applied.

I highly recommend iHerb. It’s god send!. They are just so amazing. Money well spent!. Can’t wait to go back and buy more stuff!. It’s so irresistible.

Use the discount code SCZ695 to receive $5 or $10 off your first purchase!. iHerb ships worldwide ♥.

Hope you loved my mini haul and the reviews. Please leave feedback in the comments below. I would very much appreciate that!

Follow on BloglovinLove,

Naz 🙂

How to : Research and test a cosmetic / skincare product!

Hello all!

You might think getting a product is easy. Walk into a store and buy it. That’s as simple as it can be, right?. However, if you wish to save money and never regret your purchases, it’s best you follow some steps. Here are some of the steps I take, to ensure I get the right products for myself. Just FYI : My skin type is Normal but leaning towards dry at times.

Researching the product

Research

Once you see a product that you would like to own, research it really well. Don’t buy it on impulse. Here are the steps to do it :

  • Read reviews : There will definitely be at least one person out there who has tried that particular product before you and reviewed it. Reading reviews can be a bit overwhelming because of the number of different opinions that people have. Try to stick with the reviews of those people who have the same skin type or skin conditions as yourself. If say, I can’t find any reviews by someone with Normal skin type, I will look at those with Dry skin type. If a product is OK for Dry skin, then it’s definitely OK for Normal skin type right?. Also, when searching for scrubs or exfoliating devices, if I don’t find reviews from people with Normal/Dry skin, I look at those with Sensitive skin. Combining all those reviews, you can get a good idea as to whether that product is for you.

  • Talk to relatives/friends : It’s always good to talk to people who are close to you, who have tried out that product you want. You can make sure they will let you know of all pros/cons of it. I find myself trusting the reviews of people I know closely, more, when compared to a review done by a stranger.

  • Watch demos : See the demos of the product you wish to buy, on (say) YouTube. There are so many beauty gurus out there, giving their honest reviews. This is actually just like reading reviews, but it’s so good seeing the product being put to use.

  • Compare prices : You are investing your money into a product. Money definitely doesn’t grow on trees. So make sure you make a good investment. It doesn’t hurt to compare prices. It might vary slightly or significantly from site to site or from site to physical store.

  • Try samples: It’s always good to try a product and get an impression of it yourself rather than just depending on reviews from others. Try to get a sample. Say, even if you have decided to buy a product online (because you get a better deal there), walk into the physical store selling it and try it on yourself. Feel the texture, experience how it makes you feel etc. This goes particularly for cosmetic products.

  • Talk to the salesperson: It’s always good to talk to the sales person but know this.. Their commission is based on the number of products they sell and they will try every trick in the book to sell that product to you.  It’s always good to be knowledgeable about products. Don’t believe/trust every word the salesperson says. Ask them questions. Test their knowledge!. But, there are some salespersons out there who really are knowledgeable because they are trained well. You can actually learn a lot of info from such people. Stores like BeautyBay have really lovely salespersons. They really guide you towards the right product but at the same time, don’t pressure you to buy anything. Your task is to differentiate between these two kinds of sales persons. Also, don’t buy something simply because they spent a lot of their time talking to you about it. Learn to say no. Finally, its you who is using it.

  • Use coupon codes/discounts : Even if it’s the same price online and in a physical store, there are chances that you might find a coupon code to use online. I love VoucherCodesUAE for this purpose. Before I buy something online, I just run a search on this site. Also, at a physical store, you could earn loyalty points of some sort.  Check all those options.

After getting the product

Finally, you have got the product that you want. Yayy!!. Now you really wanna just use it right?. But stop right there.. If it’s a normal cream, you can obviously start using it immediately. But what if it’s something you have read good things about and bought from online?. You still can’t trust everything. For example, if you are someone who has never used oils on your face, you really can’t just put it on, without a patch test, to determine whether you personally are allergic to it or not. Yes, it’s really important and here is how you do it :

  • Apply it to your wrist or the crook of your elbow. Leave it on for 24 hours, unwashed. In case you get redness, rashes or itchy feeling, wash off immediately. But after 24 hours, if you haven’t had any adverse effects, you are good to go.

  • If you usually are prone to breaking out or just want to be extra sure, I would suggest you do an advanced patch test. This is where you apply the same amount of product to the same area for three or five continuous days. After this test, you are 100% in the clear. No worries at all.

Alright, now that the product is safe for you to use it, here comes the judgement process.  Here are some points you have to remember (these apply mainly to skincare products):

  • Do not expect results in a day or week!. For any skincare product, give at least 3 months to properly get a result.

  • Don’t judge a skincare product too soon and jump from product to product, saying nothing works for you. You might actually pass up on a good product, simply because you didn’t give it enough time.

  • It’s good to stick with a brand once you find the right one. But that doesn’t have to limit you in any way. Find other brands that you like too. Mix and match :). I urge you to do this simply because your skin will get used to something that’s applied on it regularly and eventually you will feel it’s not as awesome as it used to be. To avoid that, treat your skin with different products and it will continue being in tip top condition.

I hope I haven’t rambled on and on but instead have given you a good idea about all the steps involved in selecting/testing/judging a product. I would love it if you share with me and my readers, your personal tips of choosing and testing products, in the comments section below.

Follow on BloglovinLove,

Naz 🙂