Krystal Caracol

Thursday, September 29, 2016

VIDEO: Empties & Reviews - Spring & Summer 2016

Monday, September 19, 2016

Cozzette Infinite Eyeshadows | Review & Swatches

Cozzette is a brand that I have followed and admired over the years, but it wasn't until recently that I finally had the budget to splurge a little on some brushes and, on a beauty rush at The Makeup Show, I spontaneously purchased their newest line of Infinite Eyeshadows. These shadows initially grabbed my attention with their vibrant and alluring array of colors and textures - and then I touched them!! All of a sudden I found myself blurting out "okay, how much to buy all the shades here?!" *gasp* Thankfully, they were offering a discount at The Makeup Show, so I saved a good chunk of money on this colorful investment ;)

The Cozzette Infinite Eyeshadows are an impressive formula of smart ingredients with purpose and performance, excluding the common unsafe ingredients present in most eyeshadows. Jojoba oil is used as a binder in the formula, which is my BOF (Best Oil Forever!), because it is a natural ingredient that is good for the skin for hydrating and nourishing. The eyeshadow pans say "vegan" on the back label, however Cozzette does not market as being a "vegan brand", rather they identify with "cruelty free consciousness".

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

ELF Makeup Brush Cleaning Glove | Review

Today I have a very quick review on the new ELF Makeup Brush Cleaning Glove ($10), it arrived over the weekend, I washed my makeup brushes that evening and completely fell in love with it!
"This convenient and portable silicone brush cleaner has multiple textures to clean both large and small brushes. Use the larger round texture to lather and wash larger brushes for deep cleaning. Use the wavy texture to cleanse and rinse the brushes along with helping straighten hairs. Use the smaller texture to cleanse and refine smaller brushes. There’s also a small and large brush slot to help straighten brush hairs and to hold brushes to dry after cleansing."

Monday, September 12, 2016

Chit Chat: I'm quitting L'Occitane Shower Oil!!

UPDATE 9/30/16
Wow, this has been a hell of a battle! Turns out, I didn't have Vaginitis like I thought, rather it is more directly called contact dermatitis; "Contact dermatitis of the vulva is a skin condition that is caused by exposure to allergens and irritants that produce vulvar and/or vaginal itching and burning when there is no infection. The skin of the vulva can be very sensitive and is subject to irritation from products such as laundry detergent, fabric softeners, body soaps, deodorized tampons or pads, and feminine hygiene products. Regular use of these products over a period of time causes irritation, burning and itching."

So this whole time that I've been treating it like an infection, and it hasn't completely cleared up, it's because it's truly an external skin allergic reaction - and the symptoms like itching, burning, redness, skin thickening, raw feeling from irritation, and dampness from irritated skin weeping are all similar reactions that I get when I use aggressive skincare products on my face - where I'm very sensitive to a lot of chemical ingredients in cosmetics.

I should have known better :(
I knew the Vagisil cream wasn't doing anything, and I had a feeling that what I was experiencing was not an internal infection.

Good news though! Baking soda baths help tremendously to eradicate this nagging issue I've been dealing with. So, a quick and easy fix, finally :)

This experience has completely opened my eyes to the fact that majority of cosmetics and personal care products have ingredients in them that I cannot tolerate. So, with this, expect to see more articles about ingredient awareness and safer products to use.

Here's a list of contact irritants that should be avoided [source]:

  • Laundry detergents containing enzymes
  • Fabric softeners and dryer sheets
  • Bath soaps, gels, lotions
  • Bubble bath, oils, bath salts, skin softeners
  • Feminine hygiene sprays, perfumes and powders, vaginal moisturizers and douches
  • Adult and baby wipes or towelettes
  • Deodorant tampons and pads, minipads
  • Contraceptive creams, jellies, foams, and sponges, K-Y® Jelly, Nonoxonyl-9
  • Condoms prepackaged with lubricant or spermicides
  • Colored, perfumed toilet paper
  • Synthetics such as nylon underwear or pantyhose

- - - - -

It's no secret that I have been using the L'Occitane Shower Oil religiously for the last 3 years, but this month I have officially decided to quit using it and I'm going back to basic bar soap. Why? Well, let me just fill you in on some horrific TMI (too much information) - and no, I'm not embarrassed or ashamed... this is real life and sometimes real life sucks so much that you must warn your friends in order to save them from this hell!

Too dramatic? Wait till you hear this story...

So, I'm well aware that you cannot use shower gels and soaps (and oils) in the delicate nether regions for pH balance reasons, so I always make it a point to avoid that area with products that have sulfates and fragrances and other potentially aggressive ingredients. I stick to the products that are meant for that area only.

Somehow, I managed to use too much shower oil, and I believe that the sudsy rinse off spread the product too far south - resulting in the most uncomfortable allergic/chemical reaction I've ever endured. I'm very serious when I say that the healing after birthing is much more tolerable than Vaginitis! 

For those who don't know, like I didn't know, Vaginitis is a bacterial imbalance that effects the vagina and/or labia - it is mostly an external issue. It can range from odorless and mild to permeating and severe. LUCKILY, I have a mild case (odorless and very irritating), and unfortunately it was a full on allergic reaction - very dry skin, irritably itchy sensation, and never-ending discomfort. I ended up sitting on ice packs just to numb away the pain.

After some research, I learned that vaginal allergic reactions are common and can be caused by products that include parabens, sodium sulfates, triclosan, and dioxane. This is the main reason why I'll be switching to natural soaps for body washing from now on, because even though I didn't actually apply the L'Occitane Shower Oil to the area, it still found a way to negatively effect it - and I don't EVER want to experience this issue again!

I'm doing much better now, still in the tail end of the healing process, but nowhere as uncomfortable as I was. I had to use an antifungal cream, such as miconazole or clotrimazole, to rebalance and rectify the issue. Moving forward, I'll only be using the shower oil to shave my legs from now on, and once this bottle is empty I'm not going to repurchase the L'Occitane Shower Oil.

CAUTION: Be aware of the ingredients in your body washing products!

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Face & Body Spa Conference & Expo - Northern California (San Jose)

[press pass acquired]

The Face & Body Spa Conference & Expo (Northern California, San Jose) is an event for industry professionals; estheticians, masseuses, and students. Face & Body offers educational seminars, product and technique demonstrations, as well as an open expo hall to shop and network.

I have personally attended the Face & Body event twice in the past, as a guest with my masseuse friend, and both times I have walked away satisfied with knowledge on ingredients and new techniques within the industry. This year, I was provided a press pass to attend the event in San Jose, on both Saturday, August 20th and Sunday, August 21st (the event continued on Monday, August 22nd with even more classes and expo hall access).