Every now and again, somebody comes along and changes the way you think about life. In my early teens it was Oprah, and now that I’m in my early 20’s, it’s skincare extraodonaire Caroline Hirons. A few years ago, I could talk the hind legs off a donkey about make-up, but skincare was still one of those dark mysterious realms that I very rarely dabbled in. Don’t get me wrong, I washed my bloomin’ face but I’m ashamed to admit that more often than not, it was with the dreaded face wipes and whatever cheap moisturiser that was on offer. (Caroline, I can feel you shuddering at the thought!)
About 2 years ago, I stumbled across a skincare blog that sucked me in after just one blog post. Caroline Hirons is the no bullshit skincare expert of dreams. She cuts out the nonsense that we so often hear from ambassadors of multiple beauty brands, and instead dishes out valuable tips and the good old fashioned truth.
Her blog contains honest reviews of skincare products she has tried and tested herself, “cheat-sheets” where she goes through tips & tricks of skincare, giveaways and even interactive question and answer posts. If I ever have a skin woe, her blog is my first protocal and i’m never left disappointed. She recently started her own YouTube channel which means yet another way for me to be distracted in the evenings after work. *shakes fist* … Just kidding.. I love it! 🙂
Ok, enough of the love-in, here’s some of my favourite tips that I have learned from Caroline’s blog:
- The nonsense that is “active ingredients”: We’ve all seen it on the bottles of our lotions and potions “Creamy moisturiser with active ingredients of….” ALL ingredients in a product are essentially active as they are in the product for a reason. DUH! It’s simply just a marketing ploy to attract us to buy the product in the first place. How silly do we feel right now!?
- Multivitamins aren’t necessarily the best choice: While we are all sometimes tempted to pop one pill that promises to “have it all”, Caroline explains that sometimes your body may not need a certain substance or in a worst case scenario, might actually work quite badly for your body. Caroline reacts quite badly with certain B vitamins and instead focuses on supplements such as Fish Oils and Magnesium. Caroline recommends that you should take more time to access what you are really deficient in and take those instead and if you are in doubt to always consult your doctor. This tip was one that caught my attention the most as it’s definitely something I’m guilty of doing. I vow from now on to pay more attention to what my skin and body really needs instead of employing a “fix-all” solution. More on this here: http://www.carolinehirons.com/2015/01/januarys-pillbox.html
- Mineral oil is the devil: This sounds like a very flippant and dramatic statement to make about an oil but in terms of the skin care world, it really is the devil. Caroline has harped on about the negative effects of mineral oil in multiple of her posts and its something that I now try to avoid when buying skin care products. Mineral Oil is essentially a by product of petroleum which clogs your pores and contains some harmful impurities. She states that it has “no benefit to your skin. Whatsoever.” and that it is something that she wouldn’t even put on her own children’s skin. That’s enough to put me off anyway!
- Foaming products dry out your skin: When I was an early teen and had SLIGHTLY oily and breakout prone skin I would rush out and buy the most harsh and chemical looking product I could find. I believed that the more dry my skin felt the better as it had cleared off all of the oil. How wrong I was. Drying out your skin, no matter what skin type you have, is bad for everybody and can in turn actually help to create even more oil than there was in the first place. When your skin is overly dried it, it over-compensates by producing even more oil. Nightmare right? Foaming products work at stripping your skin of oil and in turn dry out your skin. In her blog, Caroline recommends that we stay away from them entirely and I agree: “As a rule – stay clear of ‘foaming’ on the bottle (there is the odd exception, but they are few and far between) – to get foam you need to use a surfactant – and a surfactant turns your skin alkaline. Alkaline skin is like a petri dish for bacteria. The irony being that so many cleansers pushed on to acne/combination skins are foaming”
- The uselessness of detox products: This one made me chuckle the most as I feel the majority of us are red-handed when it comes to harping on and on about detoxing…especially in January. Caroline makes the point that if your body was so full of toxins that you would be very very ill. She suggests ditching the detox products and juice cleanses and instead work on making your body healthy all year around by eating healthy, drinking water, exercising, getting some sunshine (vitamin D) and staying away from the nasty cigarettes. This is definitely one we all want to argue with but there’s no denying that this woman is bloody right! More on this here: http://www.carolinehirons.com/2015/01/beauty-myths-no11-detox.html
While some of these tips may have been “common knowledge” or obvious to a lot of you, they are things that I admit I didn’t know or denied prior to reading Caroline Hirons blog. If you do one thing this week, I urge you to read her blog and you might just learn something new too!