Monday, 18 March 2013

Skin, Hair and Nail Care

I've wanted to make a post that has some tips for those of you who, like myself, are growing out your hair and/or trying to clear your skin up! I'd like to talk about the ways I take care of my own hair, skin and nails. 

I am currently trying to repair my hair from YEARS of damage. I started dying my hair and using heat on it at a pretty young age (around 5th grade). I've even had my hair permed straight a couple of times. These tips are some that I have acquired over the past year from multiple sources.
Shower Cap from RetroRevivalBiz 

1. Don't shower (or wash your hair) every day. If you need to shower every day, buy a shower cap or even use a plastic bag. Or just get your hair wet, but it's not good to shampoo and condition your hair every day! It strips your hair of it's natural oils, and over time you will notice that your hair gets greasier faster. Why? Because your hair is producing MORE oil to make up for the oils it has been stripped of. I know this from personal experience! I used to complain constantly about how my hair got greasy pretty much by the end of the day. Eventually I found some information on the internet to help me, and I stopped showering every day. It only took a little over a week for my hair to adjust, and then it stopped getting greasy as fast! If you're worried about your hair being greasy at school or work, just tie it up or make this adjustment during holidays. For example, it's Spring break for me, and I'm hopefully going to adjust my hair washing schedule to every 3 days. Most girls with very long hair will tell you that they do not wash their hair every day, some only do a couple times a week! When you DO wash your hair though, try to use a shampoo without sulfate or alcohol, as that will contribute to dry hair. L'Oreal has some amazing sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner on the market, which I have tried myself and LOVED. has a lot of cute shower caps, or I'm sure you can find a simple shower cap at Wal-mart or a similar store.

2. Limit the amount of heat you use on your hair. I have naturally curly hair, so I usually just get out of the shower and let it dry naturally with some hair serum/defrizz in it. My bangs get pretty wacky though, so I spray them with heat protectant (ALWAYS use heat protectant! I didn't, and that was a good contributor to my hair getting fried!) and I straighten them, then I spray my hair and touch up the curls with my straightener if I need to. I can tell you now, even from just doing this, my hair is most unhealthy in the area around my face where I most often use heat. If you feel that your hair doesn't look very nice without using heat, try to just limit it to skipping a day, and putting your hair up in a pony tail! Then use heat, and skip a day, repeat. I wasn't crazy about this when I first started doing it. I used to hate wearing my hair curly, now I very rarely straighten it! One product I use on my hair is got2b Guardian Angel heat protect spray, which protects up to 425 F or 220 C. I bought this at Wal-Mart (it was the only spray there which protected past 325 F) and I'm really glad I did. It smells nice and leaves my hair soft and shiny, and it doesn't look greasy at all. When I'm leaving my hair curly and I don't plan on using heat on it, I like to use anti-frizz serums like L'Oreal Paris Hair Expertise Nutri-Sleek with Argan Oil. It's a little orange bottle that you can use on towel-dried hair or completely dry hair. This smells really nice and clean and leaves my hair shiny. The other serum I use is maybe even better though, and it's from Eufora, called "Pure Polish Finishing Drops".. I stole this one from my mom and I'm not sure where she got her Eufora products from. I love the smell of it and it makes my hair look SO healthy, even when it was fried. A cream product I use that is actually meant to bring out my curls is Strictly Curls from Marc Anthony. I bought this a long time ago from Wal-Mart. It says "Perfect Curl Cream, Controls and defines coarse, frizzy hair while adding moisture for soft, natural, frizz-free curls with shine." A product I recently heard of and badly want to buy and try is Style Surf Spray from Garnier, which could be good if you have wavy or straight hair and want to have that "natural beachy" look on day 2. Also if you must use a blow dryer, try using it on medium instead of the hottest setting, and use heat protectant spray.

4. Use oils and serums on your hair to keep your hair healthy. There is no better way to make your hair grow faster than keeping it healthy! Coconut and Moroccan oils (or ANY oil really) are really good for your hair and are supposed to stimulate growth. You could probably find these kinds of products at the body shop or a local hair salon! Also deep condition your hair when you can. I use a leave-in conditioner called "Sleek and Shine for Frizzy, Dry Hair" from Garnier. I put it in my hair at night and tie my hair up and sleep on a towel the night before I shower. It would probably be better to buy a hair mask or an actual deep conditioner. There are also home recipes for hair masks. Check this out, and this. Or hey, you can even search Google for some recipes yourself. You're bound to find something that you have ingredients for at home already!

Check out the reviews here.

5. Avoid "perming" or "relaxing" hair. After a summer of intense hair therapy, I finally got my hair to be healthy again. Then my mom came home one day with a Garnier Fructis Style Sleek & Shine Smoothing Kit. Not only did this NOT leave my hair "smooth and sleek" it RUINED my hair. It was disgusting and it made me never want to use another Garnier product again. Beware of products like these - they're just disguising them so we don't think they're relaxers. These kinds of products should just be avoided! I should have known when I had to wear gloves and it smelt SO bad that it couldn't be good for my hair. Your hair is beautiful and capable of being smooth and shiny without using harsh chemicals on it. Just keep that in mind!

6. Diet is a big part of having healthy skin and hair and nails. I don't know as much about this, but if you care to change your diet I definitely suggest researching this. I can say, however, that you should be drinking a lot of water! Water is so good for your skin and it helps to rid yourself of toxins. Exercise is also important if you want to have healthy skin and hair. Exercise makes your hair grow faster because more oxygen is circulating to the scalp. Since I started going to the gym every day and drinking at least one bottle of water a day, my skin has cleared up immensely.

7. Vitamins can help! I personally take Nature's Bounty Hair and Nails vitamins. I found these at Wal-Mart in Canada. The bottle says "Contributes to the support of the integumentary system (skin, nails and hair)". I have only read good reviews on these. My nails already grow pretty fast, but they feel a lot stronger and less prone to breakage. Many people have said that it helped to clear their skin and reduce under-eye circles, and made them look more awake and healthy. I can't be sure if they really help me because I do so many things to my hair and skin in hope that something will work! Now I'm not sure exactly what is helping and what isn't... but hey, it can't be harmful to take vitamins! Vitamins are good for you.

I have struggled with acne for years and I have tried probably every product on the market. I've even gone to my doctor and had medication prescribed to me. Here are some things that have helped, and some things that haven't.

1. Avoid acne products like Proactive. Take a look here for a very good explanation as to why not. I used Proactive years ago and it somehow managed to make my skin feel both very dry and very oily and it didn't clear up my skin at all. And why put something with so much harsh chemicals in it on your face? How could that possibly be helpful in the long run... It is best to visit a Dr/dermatologist before using any products to try to get rid of acne.

2. Use natural products. I personally don't right now - but I know that it has to be better for your skin. Scrubs are really good for your skin! I know a lot of people who recommend buying Lush, and say that it has cleared their skin up. I'm hoping to buy some Lush products when I can. This is just my own opinion for people with problem areas, if you have very bad acne or cystic acne it's best to consult a Dr.

3. Cetaphil is amazing. It is the only thing that I have ever used that hasn't dried out my skin, or left it feeling oily and has actually cleared me up. It gets rid of breakouts easily and cleans ALL of my foundation and make-up off my face. It even gets my eye make-up off, which is not easy to do, and I know because other products haven't worked this well. It is scent-free and it isn't advertised as an "acne product". It's just a facial cleanser, and that's what I love about it. It also has different types, for oily, acne prone, dry, sensitive or combination skin.

4. Diet is important here, just as I mentioned earlier. Drink lot's of water!

5. Mask recipes for home! Here's a list of different kind of masks you can do at home, with ingredients you probably already own or are cheap to buy. You can find multiple masks for your skin type. Click.

6. Wash your pillow cases as often as possible! When you're not washing your sheets often, you may find that you will break out on your body and face, and this is because of all the sweat and oils that get onto your pillows and sheets while sleeping. Washing them once a week is a great idea.

Here are some ways I like to keep my nails looking healthy. Healthy fingernails are smooth, without pits or grooves. They're uniform in color and consistency and free of spots or discoloration.

1. You can grow them out. I like to grow out my nails and keep them a decent length. I feel like it makes my hands look nicer and my fingers look longer. Long nails are more likely to split or break, though, so if you want to keep your nails short, that's good too.

2. Clean, file and shape your nails regularly. This makes your nails look really neat and healthy. Putting lotion on your hands and fingers after soaking them for a bit, just like if you were getting a manicure is a good idea.

3. Wear a clear coat of nail polish. If you don't want to wear nail polish, even doing this is a step up. I get compliments a lot and people ask me if my nails are even real! A clear coat can also help keep moisture in your fingernails.

4. Vitamins. Biotin supplements may help to strengthen weak nails. Biotin is a medical ingredient found in the Nature's Bounty vitamins I mentioned earlier!

Hopefully this helps someone out there. :) 

No comments:

Post a Comment