How to Fight Dry Skin and Acne in the Winter

Boscia Recharging Night Moisture
Just as you think you can breathe a sigh of relief from the oily skin of summer, you have to start battling winter and the resulting dry skin. Acne, however, doesn’t seem to understand that it’s supposed to disappear now! All because you skin hasn’t gotten a little drier doesn’t mean your acne has gone away. In fact, it can be more difficult than ever to clear up or keep your skin clear of zits when it is already dry.

As the cold winter air dries up my skin, I have started pulling out the big guns for moisture. The ultra light lotions are back in the drawer and I have just been trying out a new moisturizer these past two weeks. With sensitive skin, it has to be something really gentle and pure. Boscia Recharging Night Moisture has been working great, without any breakouts at all. I even add a little of my favorite Clinique Moisture Surge on top if I feel exceptionally dry.

Normally, I shy away from anything that has the word “night” in its name. To me, that means heavy and greasy. However, I discovered that the Boscia Recharging Night Moisture isn’t that different from the day one. It just doesn’t have any sunscreen in it. For those of us who break out from chemical sunscreens, this is a godsend. Sunscreen is essential, but the physical barrier ones, like titanium dioxide or zinc, are far more gentle and less likely to irritate your skin. I’m actually surprised that Boscia, an all natural brand, has chemical sunscreen in their day moisturizer. Needless to say, I’m sticking with the nighttime moisturizer.

Here is what the Boscia makers say about their moisturizer:

Boscia Recharging Night Moisture is a concentrated cream of Oriental botanicals works overnight to nourish and revitalize your skin.An advanced penetrating, Encapsulated Ampelopsis Grossedentata, absorbs quickly to condition skin and diminish the appearance of wrinkles. Phytoglycogen helps restore the look of vitality to damaged skin. Hydrolyzed Yeast promotes new skin cell production while Soybean helps balance skin from the sometimes harsh effects of hormonal and environmental changes. Jojoba Leaf, a powerful antioxidant, combats free radical damage and Willow Herb, soothes tired skin.

Sounds too good to be true, right? Well, I take all these miracle descriptions with a grain of salt. The proof is in the results on your own skin, not 100 other people. For me, this moisturizer has been fantastic. No more flakiness, no extra oiliness from a rich moisturizer, and even my fine lines are disappearing!  Even more important? No pimples!

Who can benefit from Boscia Recharging Night Moisture?

  • People with dry skin and acne
  • Those who are suffering from temporary dryness from overdoing the topical acne medications
  • Anyone who is suffering some dryness during the colder months
  • People who need a good daytime moisturizer, without the irritating chemical sunscreens

Who should avoid it?

  • Anyone with oily skin. Stick with lighter weight, oil-free lotions like the one from Kinerase.

Where to buy Boscia Recharging Night Moisture?

  • Ulta carries it online and always has a Free Shipping coupon code listed at the top of the site.
  • is always one of my favorite places for skin care. They seem to consistently have 2 or 3 deals going on at any one time. I just checked now and they have 10% off for friends and family, free shipping over $49, and 15% off plus a free gift for over $79.

My advice is to go to and take advantage of their latest deals. However, if you have an Ulta store near you, buy from them online (using their free shipping). Then you can always return it to the store if you have a problem.

Good luck and let’s hope this weather starts warming up soon. Just too much snow around here in the Northeast!


P.S. It’s now been three weeks and my flakiness has gone away with no more breakouts. So far, so good.

A Guide to Types of Foundation

This is a guest post by Charlotte J Bleasdale.  Charlotte writes for Feel Good Essentials, which is sells a range of health and beauty products online in the UK.

For many women foundation, or base, is an everyday essential and for even more it’s a must for when they get blemishes or need a little extra boost. But ensuring you have the right foundation is essential or you could get a covering that doesn’t suit your skin type or shade. This guide should help highlight the main features of different types of foundation and what kind to use for your skin type.

Liquid (water or oil based)

A liquid foundation is extremely popular and versatile. You can choose from both water and oil based varieties with water based being best for oilier skin and oil based for those with dryer skin. The coverage of a liquid is completely reliant on how much you use which makes it great for anyone who wants versatility.


Creams are a fabulous choice for anyone with dry skin. The creamy texture gives a relatively thick coverage eliminating the need for concealer. Cream base gives a moisturised, dewy effect but because they’re so moisturising they should not be used on combination skin.


A current trend is the mousse foundation. Mousse or foam foundations give very light coverage. The advantage of this is that you don’t feel it on your skin, but unfortunately it only gives a very light coverage. If you’ve got relatively good skin that just needs evening out a little mousse could be perfect for you!

Liquid to powder

Cream foundations that become a powder once applied are ideal for people with oily skin. The powdery texture will absorb excess oil but the liquid starting point makes it easy to apply. This variety lasts really well and gives a nice, even coverage.

Mineral make up

Mineral make up is the latest craze. Mineral make up is ideal for those with sensitive skin as it is hypoallergenic. It’s also easy to build up your desired coverage with a mineral powder – just apply with a large brush.

Tinted moisturiser

A moisturiser with foundation or tinted moisturiser is perfect if you want light coverage that’s good for your skin. Tinted moisturisers are a good starting point for teenage girls and work best on dry skin. You’ll get a light, coverage that leaves your skin feeling smooth.

Choosing your favourite foundation should be based on your skin type, skin shade, favourite feel and look and favourite application technique. If you find one you like for all the categories then it’s worth getting the two shades either side of your usual colour. That way if you have a tan or notice any changes in your skin tone you can mix your colour until it is just right!

This helpful article was written and distributed by Charlotte Bleasdale on behalf of Feel Good Essentials health and beauty

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If you are U.S based and looking for a variety of makeup foundations for oily, dry or sensitive skin, be sure to check out our Makeup Store. You can search there for any type of foundation, concealer or other makeup for your skin type.

Best Powder Foundation: Top Picks for Acne Prone Skin

People with acne prone skin are forever searching for the best powder foundation. We want something that will conceal any current acne or old acne scars, but still look natural. Below, I have listed my own favorites plus some other top-rated powder foundations that I’m going to try for myself. I made a note of a couple that made me break out also, even though they are highly rated. Those foundations may work well for some people. They just didn’t work for me.

My personal top picks that I have tried:

Bare Minerals Matte Foundation:

This mineral powder foundation is a consistent winner of beauty awards and is the most popular mineral makeup out there. I like the Matte formula because it doesn’t contain bismuth oxychloride, which can make some people break out and gives a shinier finish. If you need extra coverage, you’ll want to use the bare mineral multi tasking concealer first. You can even use the concealer, then the foundation, then more concealer if you are having a really bad day!

Korres Wild Rose Mineral Foundation
– Brand New!

I was so excited when I heard that Korres was now selling a mineral foundation. I fell in love with their products about a year ago and, while the product selection is limited, they are all natural and high quality. I used their Wild Rose liquid foundation for a while, but it can be a little too shiny for me at times. Their mineral powder foundation is definitely less matte than the Bare Minerals, which is a big plus when your skin is feeling a little dry. I haven’t been using it long enough to give a full review for my own skin, but the Korres Wild Rose Mineral Foundation is topping the charts everywhere. If you find the Bare Mineral matte foundation too dry looking, then you should definitely try the new Korres one.

Tarte Provocateur Pressed Mineral Powder Foundation

Tarte’s pressed mineral powder is my go-to compact when my skin doesn’t need as much coverage and I just want a very natural look. I put on a little concealer where needed, use the sponge to dab on the powder, and the look is about as natural as you can get. This is an all-natural product, so it’s great for sensitive skin. As with the Korres products, the colors are a little limited. I was lucky that I found one that perfectly matched my skin tone.

Benefit Hello Flawless Compact Powder Foundation

If Tarte is the one I go to for lighter coverage, Benefit’s Hello Flawless is the compact powder foundation I use when my skin is having a tough day. When you use the sponge that comes with it, the coverage is phenomenal. There is also a brush you can use when you want light coverage, but I find it fairly useless. If I want some straight powder on my face, I go with the Tarte pressed powder or the new Korres mineral foundation. Benefit’s Hello Flawless has also been great for me in the summer when my skin is a little more oily.

Korres Wild Rose Compact Powder

Well, by now you guessed that I like Korres makeup.  The Korres Wild Rose Compact Powder gives more moderate coverage, somewhere between Hello Flawless and Tarte’s compact powder. It is another all natural powder foundation and gives a slightly more dewy finish to the ones by Tarte and Benefit. I have only one complaint here. The shades are very limited and I am in between two of them. I love the consistency, but I can only use it in the summer, when I have a little more color.

Also top-rated, but I haven’t tried them all:

Lancome Dual Finish Powder Foundation

I used to use this foundation for years and love the feel of it. The only problem I have now is that I can’t find a color that matches my skin tone. What happened? Either my skin got lighter or they changed the formula. It is not an unscented makeup, but that never bothered me in the past. If only they had a shade that matched my skin, I would buy this again in a second.

MAC Studio Fix Powder Foundation

MAC Studio Fix is reported as being good for oily skin. I haven’t tried it myself, but many people love it. They said it is lightweight, but covers well. However, there are a few others who say it was too heavy and chalky and clogged their pores. Go figure! MAC’s Studio Fix powder foundation has very high ratings at most online stores, so if you are a MAC user then it would probably be great for you. Otherwise, make sure you go to a physical store and try it out first. At the minimum, make sure you can return it online.

Laura Mercier Powder Foundation

This one is a little pricey, but a consistent winner among users. It is best for summer months or if you have oily skin year-round. Buildable coverage and no break-outs reported, based on reading about a million reviews on the web! The downside is that it is not an all-natural, fragrance-free makeup. If you have very sensitive skin, you could have a problem.

MAKE UP FOR EVER Duo Mat Powder Foundation

Many people rate this as the best powder foundation ever. I guess I will have to try it next. Make Up Forever has an amazing line of cosmetics, including one of the best eyeliners on the market, so their foundation should be great also. The quick take from reviewers is that it is non-drying, has buildable coverage, and a natural finish. Good for oily skin.

Top rated, but made me break out:

Philosophy: The Supernatural. I tried this foundation after reading some great reviews. What a disaster! My face broke out right away and the makeup went straight back to the store.

Everyday Minerals. I really don’t understand why this mineral makeup didn’t agree with my skin. However, both my daughter and I broke out within a day or two. It just goes to show that just reading the ingredients is not enough. What works well for one person doesn’t necessarily work well for another, even if they have similar skin types.

Anything with chemical sunscreen. I use this as my first rule in picking out foundation. Anything that has a chemical sunscreen in it makes me break out. It is best to use a mineral sunscreen for sensitive skin first, then primer, then concealer and foundation. If you won’t be in the sun much, a mineral powder foundation with sunscreen is fine.

One last parting tip for you. Always use a primer before applying your foundation and it will go on smoother, look more natural, and last longer. As I’ve mentioned before, Tarte’s Clean Slate is my favorite primer that doesn’t make my skin break out.

Have any favorites not mentioned here? Please leave a comment and let everyone know.

Basic Makeup Products and Essentials

For those of you just starting out with makeup, or who want to try something new, I have put together a select list of some basic makeup products and essentials. These will be very helpful for anyone who has decided to gain access to the video tutorials from University of Makeup that teach you how to apply makeup.  I have picked out a few good MAC makeup essentials along with a few basic makeup kits containing eyeshadows, brushes, and concealers. These are professional kits that makeup artists often use because of the wide range of colors. Take a look and click through the product links to find out more or to look at other colors (full disclosure: these are my affiliate links).

If you want to learn how to apply makeup, there’s no substitute for visual examples and step-by-step instructions. I’ve learned most of my own makeup techniques from years of experimenting with different makeup, time spent getting makeovers at department stores, and reading about different methods in beauty magazines. However, I recently was introduced to a program by the University of Makeup which provides video tutorials for every type of makeup technique you can think of.

The tutorials from the University of Makeup help you learn how to apply makeup like professionals, whether you want a natural day look, fashionable celebrity look, or the look of a dramatic photo shoot. I’ve been trying out several of the tutorials so far and have been extremely impressed with the quality of the video and clear explanations of technique. Here is the promo video they did to give an overview:

In the most basic course, My Makeup Course, you get lifetime access to 37 step-by-step video tutorials that take you through absolutely everything. You will learn how to take care of your skin and prepare it for makeup. You then learn things like how to select the right color foundation, which makeup brushes you need, how to use concealer, apply eyeshadows and blushes. You name it. The Full Makeup Course, which consists of 67 videos, will teach you how to become a professional makeup artist. You even receive a professional makeup artist certificate at the end! All of the videos can be watched on your computer or downloaded.

Here are just a few of the tips I’ve learned so far:

  • Use green concealer to cover red pimples and veins BEFORE applying foundation
  • If you wear glasses and are near-sighted (like me), use darker eyeshadow colors and focus on the crease and outer corners
  • To make small eyes look bigger – apply highlighter eyeshadow on the lids, a soft color in the crease and upwards, and only use eyeliner on the lower lid

One thing I love about the course is that you don’t have to buy a specific brand of makeup. Many video tutorials I’ve seen in the past are meant for a certain brand and are often produced by that makeup company. While these tutorials do show you what makeup they are using, you can apply the techniques with anything you have in your cosmetics drawer. However, the majority of makeup and brushes they use in the videos is by MAC, along with a few other brands. I love MAC makeup, so I’ve even been considering splurging a little over the holidays on a couple of the items in the video. After all, who couldn’t use another eyeshadow or lipstick?

When I first looked at the long list of makeup tutorials, I realized that it would take me hours to look at all of them. I assumed that this would involve some kind of monthly membership that would be way too expensive. I was pleasantly surprised to find out that the price was just a flat fee for lifetime membership. The price for My Makeup Course is only $99, which is a lot cheaper than a lifetime of makeup tips from beauty magazines! However, the Full Makeup Course has quite a few more video tutorials and is probably worth the extra money if you really love to play around with makeup. In that course, you get all the tutorials about working with different types of faces and features (such as narrow foreheads, wide eyes, and different noses).

So, what are the downsides of this course? Well, the only real one is the lack of a list of makeup used in each tutorial. The company told me that they are currently working on putting together a list of makeup for each video, so that should be solved in the near future. In the meantime, I just look carefully at the types of makeup used. Then I pick a few from my drawer to experiment with. You can also pick up a few basics from the local cosmetics store and return anything you don’t like. To help you, I’ve put together a list of a some basic makeup products and tools you can use to get started.

Note: Since I first wrote this review, the University of Makeup has opened up their extensive online makeup store to all members at a 10% discount over the general public. They even offer FREE worldwide shipping! I don’t know any makeup store that does that!!!

– Sharyn

P.S. For all you MAC makeup lovers out there, the University of Makeup store sells loads of MAC cosmetics – all with free international shipping!

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