Let’s Face It: War Prom-paganda!

Prom

-noun

An excuse to have a night all about friendship, having fun, and feeling beautiful!

(From the Brahma Tales Official Dictionary)

Propaganda

-noun

 

The particular doctrines or principles propagated by an organization or movement.

(From Dictionary.com)

As the prom countdown goes into single digits, there are preparations that every girl needs to cover: a perfect dress, the most incredible hairstyle, and of course… BEAUTIFUL SHOES! However; her skin should be no exception!

As someone who deeply understands and appreciates a good skin care regimen, I took on the challenge of trying the craziest war tactics against the most terrible facial criminals: acne, blackheads, dry skin, oily skin, makeup products and hair follicles!

Throughout the past weeks, I’ve been experimenting with random home remedies, products from THE MOTHERLAND (aka, Sephora), and continuing to use my absolute favorite products. The results? Incredible! I’m not holding back on any skin issues, and I’m still willing to experiment for our readers… So comment/message me if you have any requests, I’ll write a prom-panic follow-up post just for those readers.

Index

(For easy viewing, press “Control+F” on Windows and “Command+F” on a Mac, and type in your preferred section name!)

  1. Put Oily Faces in Their Places!
  2. How To Properly Pop (The Chamomile Way)
  3. Proper Popping Instructions
  4. The Spot Treatment Spar
  5. The Motherland
  6. The Foundation of Foundation
  7. Hair is Just Dead Skin
  8. Wah, Waxing!
  9. Crisco, Schmrisco!
  10. Products Mentioned in This Post

Put Oily Faces In Their Places!

As someone with combination skin, I get you. Sometimes your face gets much too dry from benzoyl peroxide products or doesn’t achieve much of an effect with the tonic washes sold just about everywhere.. Or worse, your face gets irritated!

Luckily, my best friend (only second to my actual best friends) happens to be this amazing thing called “St. Ives Apricot Scrub”. It’s about $4.00 at drugstores, an incredible bargain for its incredible results.

I use it three times a day. Or more. Obsessive? Probably. Does it work? Yes. Yes. A million times, YES!

Purchase it and use it in the shower to replace any sort of facial soap or wash that you use, I promise that you will see an even more beautiful you in the mirror! Also use it as a part of your morning regimen, and at night as a makeup remover (or in addition to your makeup remover).

This product removes dirt, cleans pores, leaves your face feeling soft, and its exfoliating beads remove acne scars— old and new (more on this later).

How To Properly Pop (The Chamomile Way)

I get steamed! Photo by Estefania Lamas

While I may not be able to dance to the song I’m referencing very well, after reading countless blogs and experimenting with dozens of techniques, I have finally found the best way to “zap” a pimple out of existence!

First things first: The Facial Steam

I’ve always wanted to try a steam facial at a spa, but I’ve also always been much too afraid to stick my noggin in what’s basically a sauna for my head, cutting off all air supply and whatnot…However, this Chamomile tea steam facial not only promised to open up pores and release toxins, giving hopes of leaving skin soft and “glowing”… There was no way I could resist.

Chamomile Steam Facial

Items/Ingredients:

A Microwaveable, plastic salad bowl

2-3 Cups of water (depending on size of bowl, you only want it to be about 1/3 full)

3 Chamomile tea bags

A clean body towel (to cover the steam)

I can’t stress this enough: Please, please, please make sure that what you’re using is a microwaveable bowl… Scary things happen in microwaves when they’re not heat resistant… Let’s just not even think about the messy, messy cleanups I’ve gone through when I “nuked” bark chocolate in a non-resistant bowl.

Precautionary statements aside, put the water in the bowl, then tear the tags from the tea bags and throw them inside (or if you’re like me… Dunk them). Move the bowl into the microwave for a period of about 5-7 minutes to heat it up, and let it sit for another 2-3 minutes. After this wait, microwave-it-up for another 4-6 minutes to get it steaming, and wait about 3 minutes before taking it out.

This wait is important because it lets the plastic cool down so it doesn’t melt or burn you upon contact, however, when handling the bowl, using mitts or other heat protecting devices is also a good idea.

Now, go to your “happy place”. Somewhere where you can be alone, unbothered, and more importantly, untouched. If someone messes with you and your head goes “bam!” into the water, it could pose a severe threat for respiration or even risk burns. Place the bowl on a steady surface and in you go into your own, personal hell (because it’s so incredibly hot).

Take it only as far as you can. If you can only take the steam for thirty seconds or three minutes the first time, that’s okay. Make sure not to push yourself too much because it does get a little difficult to breathe. Do about 2-4 sessions of 5-10 minutes.

Needless to say, I also highly recommend it for those with sleeping problems.  This knocked me out cold by the third round… There went half an hour of my life. On the plus side, I woke up from this nap with pretty skin. Whoop!

Proper Popping Instructions:

Get q-tips. Lots and lots of them. Instead of using bacteria rid hands, the q-tips not only provide a more sterilized tool- their cushioned heads make them perfect for removing pimples because they do not leave bruises or strain blood vessels.

Use them as you would your fingers, pressing from both sides on the pimple until the puss and whitehead comes out. If you have done this immediately after steaming, the pimple’s contents should come out very easily, without the necessity to continue pressing or damaging the skin.

Please don’t make the same mistake that I make all the time: do not over- press. I know some people want to get ALL of the puss out, but after the whitehead comes out, all there’s left is your pore and the blood oozing out of it.

Do you think that was grotesque/gross imagery? Good. I’ve scared you. DO NOT DO IT, it will lead to acne scars. You’ll thank yourself later.

The Spot Treatment Spar

I’m a fan of Clean& Clear’s “Persa-gel 10%: Maximum Strength” benzoyl peroxide acne medication, but regardless of which spot treatment you use, there’s also a proper way to put it on: Just like lotion.

You wouldn’t put an enormous glob of lotion on a two centimeter spot of your face, correct? Do the same for spot treatments. Spreading it liberally avoids irritation (less redness), pore blockage, and increases ventilation to the area, meaning that there’s a higher chance that your facial oils are being properly treated by the medication.

It’s also good to remember what’s actually in the medication: stuff that kills… Bacteria! Benzoyl Peroxide medications are basically hand sanitizer for your face, so as long as you apply them liberally (without adverse effects like irritation or an allergic reaction), you can technically wear them whenever, regardless of presently having acne or not, as a preventive measure.

The Motherland

Oh, how I love Sephora. Whenever I go inside, I must immediately control myself: I’m like a little puppy in a litter of kitties (kittens), aching for attention (from the staff).

I always NEED their advice on the best foundation, the greatest moisturizers, lip balms, etc. Sadly, they’re in high demand, so I must woman up and get advice from other customers or internet reviews.

My many sessions with my fellow “Sephorites” (and my friends Sam Haynes and Emily Hendricks) have led me to make the following conclusion: Clinique’s $14 “Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion” is a steal for pre-makeup application moisturizing.

For something that’s helped make my face, well, dramatically different, I couldn’t just accept the sample the saleswoman was offering me: I had to have the whole thing.

Which leads me to an entirely new topic: FOUNDATION!

The Foundation of Foundation

  1. Oily skin- Always use powder foundation. Liquid foundation WILL clog pores and increase shine, which will be especially visible during pictures.
  2. Dry skin- If you prefer going mostly makeup free, use a tinted moisturizer. They improve skin texture, even out color, and prevent the double-tone face/chin problem that plagues many.
  3. Normal skin- Use whichever you prefer, but for prom make sure to carry around a powder just in case. Dancing works up a sweat, and you probably don’t want to end up with a white forehead in all pictures despite working up a great tan!
  4. Finally- for those girls with naturally beautiful skin.. Don’t be afraid to show it! A little bit of concealer and blush goes a long way, especially on a night where everyone else is heavily made up! A product I highly suggest for every girl is Bare Minerals “Mineral Veil”.  It prevents shine, makes makeup look less “cakey”, and gives skin a little bit of an “oomph”!

Hair is Just Dead Skin

As many of us have been informed, hair is just dead skin… So we have to address that too!

A great home remedy for shiny and manageable hair is none other than non-refined Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV); a product you can buy at any grocery store for less than a dollar.

While conventional shampoos and conditioners tend to cover hair over time, they begin to weigh it down, increasing the likelihood of breakage and frizz (which is caused by a lack of hydration in hair, where the vapor enters the hair follicle to compensate).

So, the ACV not only tastes great on salads, but it also makes hair soft, manageable, while carefully nursing it back to life by removing shampoo buildup.

As a side note: It’s safe for color treated hair (I made sure to test it out on my own demi-permanent color treated hair a few weeks ago when it was substantially redder).

Some may experience a little bit of initial stinging on the skin, but that’s attributed to its anti-bacterial properties, not a weird side-effect, making it doubly beneficial to the scalp. The smell disappears, so there’s really no excuses not to try it.

Apple Cider Vinegar Rinse

A bowl

1/3 cup natural, non-refined ACV

2/3 cup water

Mix the water and the ACV in a bowl. Put it in your hair. Leave it in for 15-20 minutes, rinse out and shampoo/condition as normal.

Another personal-favorite product is Ocean Potion’s “100% Aloe Vera Gel”.  I use it almost immediately out of the shower and it makes my hair soft and shiny; preventing fly-aways, making it better than some mousse’s hardening and dulling effects.

Wah, Waxing!

Prom facial waxing is a mighty terrible idea, especially if you’ve never done it before, but even more alarming if you’re doing it 3 days to hours before prom.

Waxing puts you at risk of damaging your skin, creating post-wax pimples, or worse- an allergic reaction that won’t be easily cured or covered by makeup.

A great alternative for waxing is threading, which, granted, is more painful, but the results are just as good, with the added benefit of choosing your own brow shape.

Another alternative is Veet, and Nair hair removal creams, whose chemicals quickly make hair “disappear”.

If you’d prefer to wax, make sure that the waxing stick (or strip) used is sterile, or opt for a honey-sugar style wax, a more natural form of wax that does twice the work with less potential to cause skin problems (I’m more than willing to testify against special occasion waxing, if you were wondering).

Crisco, Schmrisco

When approached with a stick of Crisco brand shortening, many are put off by the misconception that this product is made of lard (pig fat), when in reality the product is made entirely from vegetable oil (which to my knowledge does not include any animal fat; feel free to dispute this as my research did not stem more than a dozen Google hits).

In a survey I conducted throughout the week: When approached with a lotion canister filled with Crisco, and without the knowledge of its contents to the testers (besides my natural responses of “it’s hypoallergenic” and “DON’T WORRY ABOUT IT!”), most people felt tempted to try this “wonderful” lotion.

————————————

After trying it, all experienced softer skin.

While test-driving this product the past 3 weeks, I’ve noticed that using it as a nighttime moisturizer has significantly bettered my skin’s texture.

When taking my routine morning trip to the mirror, my skin looks soft, has a “glow” to it, and an overall better appearance than it did the night before; these results tempted me to take this product to a more difficult place to treat: feet.

A big dilemma with many prom-going females is that their heels leave their feet calloused, red, and irritated. After a night of Crisco-ed feet (covered in socks, of course) my feet were also softer, and the redness from a night full of walking downtown with my 5-inch heels was gone. Crisco is a miracle worker for your skin, so don’t be afraid to try it because you’ve used it before in a friend’s birthday cake. It’s not butter; it’s better!

Products Mentioned In This Post:

1. St. Ives Apricot Scrub ($3-$4, drugstores)
2. Clean&Clear “Persa Gel 10%: Maximum Strength” ($5-$10, drugstores)
3. Clinique “Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion” ($14-$24, Sephora and department stores)
4. Bare Escentuals “Mineral Veil Powder” ($20-$40 if purchased separately, $40 for an entire Bare Minerals “Starter Kit” at Sephora or Bare Escentuals stores)
5. Apple Cider Vinegar ($1-$3, grocery stores)
6. Crisco Shortening Sticks ($3-$5, grocery stores)

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About Estefania Lamas

Hello! My name is Estefania Lamas and I'm a Senior Editor for Brahma Tales. I like bed time stories, movie-worthy adventures, and reading a whole bunch. I'm a fan of topics like international relations and socio-economic revolutions.

One thought on “Let’s Face It: War Prom-paganda!

  1. I DON’T HAVE CHAMOMILE!
    (hi best frann)
    please try with any of the following:
    -green tea (white mangosteen and peach, although I imagine any variety would work)
    -passion
    -coconut chai
    -chocolate chai
    -gypsy rose

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