2017 New Skincare Products

The end of 2016 and beginning of 2017 have been filled with failures and successes in terms of skincare and my makeup routine. Let me start by explaining that I have very fair, sensitive skin. I had acne in high school, but it has cleared up considerably since then. I have some acne scarring, large visible pores, and combination oily skin.

In 2016, I used simple cleansers and moisturizers by CeraVe because I needed products that were gentle and non-irritating. I also used the Clinique Smart Custom-Repair Serum and Clinique All About Eyes Rich under-eye moisturizer. This routine seemed fine, but I noticed that my skin often looked dull, the circles under my eyes were worsening despite ample sleep and the Clinique product, I was still breaking out, and my acne scars were still visible. After some research, I found a few products I wanted to try.

I purchased 100% organic cold pressed Rosehip Seed Oil, Lush Breath of Fresh Air toner, and Lush Grease Lightning. I added all three into my routine at the same time – something you are not supposed to do! Whoops 🙂

Rosehip Seed Oil is raved about on the internet for its anti-aging and healing benefits. I dove right in and began using this in place of my moisturizer. Day and night, I would wash with CeraVe Renewing SA Cleanser, tone with Lush Breath of Fresh Air toner, apply the Rosehip Seed Oil, and spot treat my acne with the Lush Grease Lightening. I really liked how tight – yet moisturized – my normally oily skin was when using the oil instead of moisturizer. I also liked how the oil seemed to give me a “glow” due to its orange-y hue.

However, about a month into starting this new routine, I was having rash-like breakouts on multiple parts of my face. I determined that this was a reaction to the Rosehip Seed Oil. I stopped using it and went back to my CeraVe Moisturizing Lotion and my skin immediately cleared up. After reading more, I found that other people had had similar reactions. While this is a great oil for so many people, like all products, there are inevitably some types of skin that do not agree with it.

The Lush Grease Lightning is really quite amazing. It zaps problem spots overnight, visibly reducing their size and color with just one application. I also like that the toner has worked to keep any excess dirt out of my pores.

In place of the Rosehip Seed Oil, I purchased the Peter Thomas Roth Retinol Fusion PM night serum. It has great reviews and delivers some of the same benefits I was looking for with the Rosehip Seed Oil. I am also using the Peter Thomas Roth Sulfur Masque Acne Treatment Masque once a week, and the Caudalie Deep Cleansing Exfoliator twice a week. More to come on these products once I have had time to try them out.


Five Things Your Competitors Can Teach You About Social

I know, I know – the last thing you want to do is add to your competitor’s follower count on Twitter, be one more view on their YouTube video, or admit that you stalk their Instagram. But here is a list of five things you can learn from your competitors’ social presences that make it worth it:

  1. The appropriate tone and voice for your industry. This first tip is especially key if you are just beginning to build your business’s social presence. Have you ever noticed how some brands Tweet like a playful human? I’m thinking of Pizza Hut and for this one. If you are also in the food industry, you can take a look at accounts like this one and see how people are responding to that type of voice. Do customers engage with it? Do they like it? Do they think it is appropriate? This can either give you the go-ahead to adopt a similar style on your social accounts, or tip you off that maybe staying more conservative is a good idea. Note: DO NOT plagiarize your competition. Being a copy cat is bad. Learning from others’ mistakes/successes is good. Social is a grey area that provides you with the opportunity to push boundaries and try new things – seeing others’ experimentation can help you brainstorm your own.

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    Retrieved from Twitter.
  2. Industry #hashtags. One way to increase your views and followers is to use hashtags in your social posts. Look to your competitors to see what hashtags are trending in your industry and join in the conversation. Don’t just let them do all the talking!
  3. What platforms are relevant to your consumers. If all of your competitors have a YouTube channel, you might want to get one too. This may be a sign that your customers are looking to find their information there.
  4. Competitors’ branding strategies. Social media is a platform that provides brands with the opportunity to creatively express who they are. When entering or expanding your reach within a market, it is important to see who is already there. How are competitors positioning themselves to reach the people you want to talk to? Aka – what seat at the table is already taken?  Being aware of others can help you build a unique brand persona that will diversify you.
  5. What customers actually think of your competition. One example that immediately comes to mind for this one is Zappos. Just by taking a quick glance at Zappos’ Facebook page, you can tell that customer service is their priority and that people think highly of the brand because of it. The example below is just one of the many conversations that Zappos has with customers on their Facebook page. They take the time to show that their customers are a priority, and clearly, this is paying off! This would tip you off that if Zappos is your competition, you better fight hard to win over their customers because they ain’t going easy. The inverse of this example is that if your competition is doing a poor job, people will make it known on their Yelp, Twitter, etc. Complaints can tell you a lot about what your audience is expecting out of a product/service, and you can use that information to meet their needs in ways that the competition currently isn’t.

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    Screen caption from Zappos.com’s Facebook.