My Skin Care Routine

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I have struggled with acne since I was in 4th grade. I was always told that once I got older I would grow out of it. Well, that has yet to happen. I tried Proactiv, and it seemed to work for a little while. But after about a year or so my face seemed to get used to the product and my face started breaking out again. I went to the dermatologist and found products that seemed to work a little more, but they were so expensive and my insurance wouldn’t cover all of the cost.

Within the last year I think I have finally found a routine that works for my skin. I still get those pesky breakouts before my time of the month, but other than that my face stays pretty clear. This routine works great for those who are acne prone and/or have oily skin.

Face Wash: Neutrogena Rapid Clear Stubborn Acne Cleanser (found in drugstores). The active ingredient in this is benzoyl peroxide, which is the active ingredient found in most products you get from the dermatologist and Proactiv, but this face wash is more than half the cost! I wash my face in the morning and night. I take nightly showers, so when I first get in I wash my face and let the face wash sit on my face like a mask while I wash my hair and body. This gives your skin the chance to really soak in all the product. I learned this trick from my dermatologist, and I have really noticed a difference after doing it!

Face Cleansing Brush: Clarisonic Mia 2. Clarisonic sent me this face brush about a month ago to try out, and I absolutely loved it, so of course I had to add it into my routine! I use it in the morning and at night, and it really helps to get my face cleaner, especially if I have makeup on! It cleans out my pores of all the excess oil, dirt, and makeup. My face is always so much softer after using it!

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Before using the Clarisonic brush, make sure your face and the brush are wet (it’s waterproof, so you can use it in the shower!). Next, apply the product directly to the brush (shown below) or rub on your face.

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Once you have your face wash on the brush, turn on the brush by pressing the bottom button and going in a circular motion on your face. The cleansing brush is gentle, so you don’t have to worry about your face being red and irritated afterwards! The Mia 2 is timed for each section of your face (chin/nose, both cheeks, and forehead), so it pause for a second so you can move to the next section to clean. I always start with my chin/nose, then each cheek and ending with my forehead.

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Clarisonic facial devices would make a great gift for Christmas! Clarisonic is offering Styled Muse readers a 15% off coupon code to try a facial cleansing brush out for yourself or to gift to a friend or family member! Go here and use code: HERCAMPUS

Toner: Neutrogena Acne Stress Control Toner (found in drugstores). I apply this to my face with a cotton pad or cotton ball after washing it. It helps with oily skin!

Spot Treatment: Rapid Clear Stubborn Acne Spot Gel (found in drugstores). Whenever my face starts to break out, I apply this directly to my pimples, and it helps with redness and swelling and they tend to disappear quicker.

Face Mask: Clarisonic Detoxifying Clay Mask (found here). Twice a week I use this face mask to remove impurities from my pores.

Moisturizer: ELF Nourishing Night Cream (found in drugstores). At night I apply this to my skin, especially during the winter. Since I have extremely oily skin, I don’t have to apply a moisturizer as much. This one doesn’t leave my skin feeling greasy after applying it and doesn’t break out my skin. I also love using their eye cream at night!

What is your favorite product in your skin care routine? Let me know in the comments!

Valerie

This post is sponsored by Clarisonic and Her Campus Media. All opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that make Styled Muse possible!

Girls Night Ideas + GIVEAWAY!

Sometimes you just really need a girls night. Am I right? But, what is there to do? Coffee? Drinks? Girl, I gotchu. I’m giving you a few ideas that are perfect for girls nights, plus a giveaway to have your very own girls night!

  1. Movies in: I know it may sound lame, but this is the time you can watch all those chick flicks you haven’t been able to see because your boyfriend just isn’t about that life. Grab a few of your favorite snacks, bubbly (it can’t be a girls night without that), and your PJs.
  2. Paint night: Whether you are painting at home or at a painting party, it’s a fun way to catch up, drink wine, and get a little crafty. My local coffee shop hosts these every few months, and I have it on my to do list to sign up!
  3. Spa night: Manis, Pedis, Facials, you name it. Take this time to pamper yourselves and have a glass of wine… or 5 ;).
  4. Shopping: This is an obvious one, right? But be adventurous and try on something you normally wouldn’t!
  5. Comedy club: What’s better than having a few drinks with your girls, while laughing until your stomach hurts?
  6. Coffee: Some of my best girls nights are sitting on the couch at a coffee shop, drinking a latte, while catching up.
  7. Out for drinks: One of my favorite places to go and have drinks and appetizers is Elephant Bar. They invited me to try some of their new signature cocktails and appetizers and they are SO good! My favorite cocktail was the Jungle Colada, it literally tastes like ice cream! For appetizers you have to try their Parmesan Crusted Green Beans!
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    I partnered with Elephant Bar to give TWO Styled Muse readers the chance to each win a $25 gift card to have your own girls night! Head on over to Instagram to enter!

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    What are some of your favorite things to do at your girls nights? Let me know in the comments!

    Valerie
                  In partnership with Elephant Bar. All opinions are my own.

Fall Cocktail

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I love trying new cocktails. Especially if it’s for a good cause! West Elm and Whole foods asked for me to try one of their cocktails from their blog to share with you all! If you post your own photo of a cocktail or appetizer on Instagram and use the tag #westelmxwfm they will donate $1 to the Whole Planet Foundation that helps alleviate poverty worldwide.

Now onto the cocktail! This one is called Apple Pomegranate Fizz. The original recipe is found on the West Elm and Whole Foods blog here.

Apple Pomegranate Fizz
Serves 6

This festive drink is easy to prepare for a crowd. Consider making one batch with nonalcoholic sparkling cider and the other with hard cider to satisfy everyone.

      ¼ cup sugar
      1 (4-inch) piece fresh ginger, thinly sliced
      2 cups chilled unsweetened pomegranate or açai juice
               1 quart chilled sparkling cider or hard apple cider

Combine 1/2 cup water, sugar and ginger in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer 3 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool. Strain out ginger; you should have about 1/3 cup syrup.

Have 6 cocktail glasses ready. Pour about 2 teaspoons ginger syrup and 1/3 cup pomegranate juice into each glass and top with sparkling cider. Reserve remaining syrup for another use (or more cocktails!).

I absolutely love this cocktail, and it’s perfect for Thanksgiving! If you are in a rush (like I was the other day) you can create this cocktail with 1 part Ocean Spray Cranberry Pomegranate Juice and 1 part Johnny Appleseed hard cider. Just add a few apple slices to top it off. SO good and super simple!

Do you have a favorite cocktail for fall? Let me know in the comments!

Valerie