But first,wouldn't it be great if someone would just pay me to talk about makeup? Wouldn't a job with a cosmetics company as a "Product Educator" just be the ultimate dream job for those of us that could talk about makeup all day long? I have come to a conclusion recently that was formed by my complete lack of time for blog posts in favor of a full-time graduate program to get my Master's Degree. Here it is: Makeup is fun and reading hundreds of pages of text, writing papers, and doing research is boring. But unfortunately, being well-versed in the fine art of "makeup knowledge" just doesn't look as good on paper as formal higher education to a potential employer. That being said, I really feel like taking a break from the ever so problematic health care situation in the US and focus on what products I've really been loving these days. And coincidentally, a large number of them are from Philosophy, a not cheap but not extremely expensive high-end skin care and fragrance line. They are very much a "problem-solution" kind of brand and really focus on individual skin care issues with innovative and universal (sometimes) products. Not totally a doctor brand, yet not totally a fluff brand, Philosophy does have its roots in science-based skin care and has continued to release many well received products in their line. I totally endorse buying many cosmetic products on Ebay from a trusted seller. Tax and shipping can add around $10 on to the price when you purchase from certain online retail venues. Finding free shipping and not paying tax on Ebay is fantastic when you already find the product for a lower retail values. Only drawback? If you buy from a crappy seller and if there is a "no returns" policy or "limited returns" to only damaged or "not as described" items in place by the seller and you happen to hate the product and can't return it based on that. But whatev, these are some A+ products put together by yours truly. And if I do say so myself, I have pretty good taste.
Philosophy Help Me Night Treatment (Allure Beauty Award Winner): Ahh, my skin can finally breathe a sigh of relief having found a strong but gentle retinol product that will not tear up my face and restrict me to a reclusive lifestyle. The percentage of retinol in this Philosophy product is the strongest that you can buy without a prescription so that takes care of the concern of finding a retinol infused product but it being too weak to work. Second, it has moisturizing properties and doesn't leave my face dry or tight. In fact, I often forget to apply moisturizer at night over the Help Me because my face feels moisturized enough without an extra step. This stuff is only for night time use which is a perfect segway into my next most beloved current product. $45 for 1.05 oz
Philosophy On a Clear Day Retinol Clarifying Lotion: The daytime counterpart to Help Me in my skin care regimin. I strongly believe that this multi-tasking product for blemish-prone skin is the direct contributor of my clear and hormonal acne free skin. I used to get clogged pores and the occasional but absolutely impactful and dreadful cystic acne bump. You know the kind of acne that never comes to a head but just sits there for ever and ever as a big swollen and sensitive to the touch, beauty busting, confidence destroying, hard bump. On a Clear Day keeps this miserable situation at bay while giving me a very gentle dose of retinol during the day. Retinol once per day is very good but retinol twice per day is even better. Another Philosophy skin care treatment winner. Around $40 for .75 oz.
Philosophy When Hope is Not Enough SPF 20: I've lost track of how many "Hope" products that Philsophy has created. Let's see, there was Hope in a Jar, Eye Hope, Hope in a Tube, When Hope is Not Enough, etc. All I know is that the one that I like has better hydrating properties for my normal/dry skin than does its "Hope in a Jar" predecessor. I like the version of When Hope is Not Enough that comes in a tube, is tinted a pinkish color, and has an SPF. It is perfectly hydrating while going on a little greasy but soaks into the skin fairly quickly. It works magic over the On a Clear Day product that I just mentioned. Although I'd like the SPF to be upped to at least 30, I am glad that there is at least something in it that will shield me from the wrinkle dispenser known as the sun. $38 for 2 oz.
Philosophy Microdelivery Mini Peel Pads: These things rock. They are a daily exfoliating treatment for your face that work like a daily mini peel. You have to know how important and crucial exfoliating is for the upkeep of your precious skin. You simply cannot make room for fresher, brighter, skin cells if you have layers of the old stuff blocking its debut into the world. These little pads instantly reveal a certain brightness to your skin tone which makes those than want instant gratification happy. The peel pads work to set your face up for the other products that come after it in your skin care routine. The work of the peel pad helps your other products sink in better and go on smoother. Another plus are the anti-inflammatory benefits and paraben free, sulfate free formula. $35 for 60 pads (this can last 1 month or 2 depending on how often you use).
Honorable Mentions, Non-Philsophy, But Still Belong On The List of My Faves!
Dr. Denese Advanced Firming Facial Pads: Like these even better than the Philsophy Microdelivery Mini Peel Pads but didn't go with the theme of sticking to Phil products! These have a kick! Used only at night, great glycolic acid exfoliating treatment pad. Available at QVC (or Ebay).
Bare Escentuals Pure Transformation Night Treatment: Minerals that look like foundation powder to apply to your face. At NIGHT! You actually go to bed with what looks like fairly decent foundation coverage. And it doesn't come off on to your pillow. When you wake up, you look pretty good and can drop the kids off to school without wearing a ski mask or taking the time to apply your makeup in the morning. This deserves its own post but had to mention. Major love.
P.S. Use all products with caution. Most of my recommendations in this post are for treatment products and contain ingredients that may not be condusive to sensitive skin. I personally have sensitve skin and can use all of them with no problem, so that is saying something right there. Again, do your own research and make your own decisions based on what's right for you! If Anti-Aging is your concern, Philosophy may have the answers. Or at least claim to :)