Clif Bar | Energy Bar Blueberry Crisp
Not really trying the Lärabars quite yet… We continue with trying different flavors of Clif Bars, and this time we got Blueberry Crisp. These taste just like blueberry pie. They are not my favorite, as I have a little aversion to energy bars with berries in them. They tend to taste very sour and leaves an acidic feel in my tummy. This falls somewhere in the middle, not giving me too much discomfort. But I guess nothing can beat the White Chocolate Macadamia Nut flavor. It’s just the BOMB.
Gonna take a break from energy bars now as we’re going into low season, and no need for the extra fuel no matter how good they might taste.
MRM | Vegan Vitamin D3 5,000 IU 60 Caps
While the The Institute of Medicine’s Food and Nutrition Board say 600 IU/day is enough for adults and the Endocrine Society says 2,000 IU/day is enough for most adults. New information is coming up that the current recommendations are not adequate for maintaining healthy levels of vitamin D. Especially considering that your body can produce between 10,000 to 25,000 IU of vitamin D in just a little under the time it takes for your skin to turn pink (taking in account that you’re exposing large parts of your body during summer/warm weather countries). That’s about 15-45 min in the sun.
The vitamin D council recommends a dose of 5000 IU for adults or 70-80 IU/day/kg of body weight total to be more exact.
In the beginning of this year, I switched from PurePharma’s D3 2500 IU to a vegan D3 supplement called VitaShine with the same amount. They have a bit more fillers and ingredients and comes in chewable tablets. I didn’t find them as effective, but at the same time, my experiment lead me to become deficient in vitamin D. I’ve been taking the 2500 IU sporadically throughout the summer even, with no luck in correcting my deficiency. This summer was a little bit of “blah” I would say. Though I got some sun exposure, it was definitely not compared to how much I usually get.
After reading on that 5000 IU was what actually what was needed I searched for a vegan vitamin D supplement with higher dosage. Luckily I found MRM, who uses VitaShine’s patented vegan D3.
I’ve been taking them for almost a month now and I like these much better. They are not chewable tablets, you just swallow them. Because I’ve been taking other things to balance off my hormones I can’t surely say if they’ve helped in that department. But I do like to think they’ve contributed with some.
As it’s October now and the sun is not a reliable source, I’m definitely sticking to these and won’t get off unless I go on some winter vacation below Lisbon. I fall in the skin category IV, and so it takes more time for my body to produce an adequate amount of vitamin, as well as I seem to empty up my storage much faster than the average of 3 months. I go lacking within 1 month! And so vitamin D is super important for my mental health, as I have a history of Seasonal Depression, as well as my hormonal health!
▸ Why does the Vitamin D Council recommend 5,000 IU/day?
▸ How do I get the vitamin D my body needs?
Out of Africa | Pure Shea Butter Lip Balm Unscented 3 Pack
The lip balms we got like a year ago, was coming to their end and it was time to fill the stock. Out of Arica seems to be the only beeswax-free lips balms that offer a decent price. I also like that you can buy these in 3-packs. I went for the unscented only because I really don’t care for scented lips. I just don’t see the point.
These are not the best lip balms, as they turn solid and grainy in cold temperatures. I love me some Hurraw!, that are also vegan. But they are quite expensive, even on iHerb :/ And does not come in value pack.
Madre Labs | Serumdipity Vitamin C Facial Serum 30ml
I was kind of disappointed at how the Azelaic acid cream from Paula’s Choice didn’t do much at speeding up dark spots from past blemishes. So my search continued on to Vitamin C serums as they are told to be really good for this purpose. It was really hard to find a decent Vitamin C serum, that didn’t contain citrus oils or witch hazel, and that didn’t cost me too much $$$! And oh, that could ship to Sweden!
I really wanted to try Paula’s Choice C15 Booster. But as it contains some ingredient that’s not allowed to sell in cosmetics in the EU, it will cost big bucks to import it. Nonetheless, I got in touch with PC and they told me they are reformulating the Resist C15 Booster for us EU citizens! And hopefully, we will get to purchase it somewhere at the beginning of next year!
I then went and looked to buy the Hylamide C25 Booster. However, when I emailed Deciem about suggestions, they told me to not use their Hylamide C serum nor the one from NIOD (30%). They recommended this as I’ve never used pure vitamin C serums before and because the Deciem team makes really potent stuff. I valued their honesty and went to look for lower formulas of 10-15%. They steered me into buying their WhiteRX serum, but I don’t want anything that will make me look too pale. The before-and-after shots were really not appealing to me.
So you can imagine how happy I got when I scrolled through iHerb and saw that Madre Labs has come out with four new serums, and one decent Vitamin C serum!
The Serumdipity Vitamin C serum contains a new sort of vitamin C in the form of Aminopropyl Ascorbyl Phosphate (K3 Vita C). Which is supposed to be really stable and really potent that only 0.1-1% is needed in formulations. Because of this, it’s not really comparable to formulations with Ascorbic Acid.
As Madre Labs puts it:
Ascorbic Acid is not very stable when in liquid formulations so companies have to add more stabilizers to ensure Ascorbic Acid Stability. We need to limit additional stabilizing ingredients.
Aminopropyl Ascorbyl Phosphate is a newer source of Vitamin C that is more stable in topical formulations and there is no need for 10%, 15%, 20%, 25% or even 30% usage levels.
The hip brand of the moment, Glossier, recently came out with three new boosting serums. Whereas their Super Glow actually contains this new Vitamin C, and they’ve paired it with Magnesium PCA. However, they do not ship internationally, and so if you want to get your hands on this new stable form of Vitamin C, Madre Labs serum is a good start.
With all the information I had gotten about Vitamin C, I told myself to start off slow; Like once in the evening every other night or less. But as I had to wait a long time for my package, as the Swedish customs are scumbags as usual… I got eager and without really paying attention, I saw myself applying it in the evening… And then next in the morning. -.-
This caused a really bad breakout. It took my skin a week to heal from it. And that’s when I really got fed up with my skin problems.
But yeah, after a week the storm had wind down. I started incorporating the serum back into my skincare routine. This time slowly. And I haven’t had any reaction since then. I do think it’s effective, as it makes you wake up to a brighter face. But I haven’t really been seeing the dark-spot fading results as I’ve been wanting. I know, I’m probably stressing here! Considering I’ve only used it every other night, and only for about a month, it’s too soon to see big results. So I’m only giving it four stars for now, as I think it’s good, but I also don’t have much to compare to.
I use about 3-4 drops over my whole face, sometimes I spot-treat. The serum feels a bit sticky, but sinks in very fast and leaves your skin matte.
I definitely recommend going slow when introducing any new products that contain active ingredients like this one! A breakout is just not worth it!
EDIT: I eventually stopped using it and threw it away as it never had an impact on red spots.
Other Vitamin C serums on iHerb:
▸ Mad Hippie | Vitamin C Serum – Contains citrus oils.
▸ Jeffrey James Botanicals | The Light Age-Defying C Serum 15% – Expensive and contains Witch Hazel.
▸ Derma E | Evenly Radiant Brightening Serum with Vitamin C – Seems good, but contains Witch Hazel and Citrus Oil. Also contains Arbutin* for brightening effect.
INGREDIENTS MADRE LABS SERUMDIPITY VITAMIN C SERUM: Water, hydrolyzed jojoba esters, aminopropyl ascorbyl phosphate, sodium hyaluronate, algae extract, rosa canina fruit extract, propanediol, calendula officinalis flower extract, acacia senegal gum, hordeum vulgare seed extract, sodium phytate, xanthan gum, sodium hydroxide, phenoxyethanol, ethylhexylglycerin.
*Arbutin is a glycoside; a glycosylated Hydroquinone extracted from the bearberry plant in the genus Arctostaphylos.
The Face Shop | Rice Water Bright Light Cleansing Oil
When iHerb started stocking up on Korean goodies I got really excited to try me some! Though I like things to be fragrance-free, this one got to slip in the basket. I’m still not 100% sure about what Korean brands are Cruelty-Free and which ones are not. There’s a bit contradicting information out there as there is a switch happening where more and more Korean skincare brands are joining in the cruelty-free status.
But I apologize in advance if The Face Shop does test on animals if someone got valid proof that they do.
Whether it is or not, I don’t think I’ll be repurchasing this product. Much, solely because of the fragrance. While not too overpowering it’s not that mild either that I’d give it a pass. Because fragrance is listed at the end, I thought that whatever scent it had, it may go well with sensitive skin. But sadly, this wasn’t the case.
I don’t use it every day though, so I haven’t noticed any negatives on my skin. If it wasn’t for the fragrance, this is a really nice oil cleanser that’s free from mineral oil and works well with oilier skin types. From what I know, The Face Shop has one that’s called “Rich Cleansing Oil” that’s supposed to be for drier skin type. But somehow iHerb has not taken this in. Instead, they have the Cleansing Milk of the same Rice Water-line.
The texture is very runny, like water almost. Dissolves makeup and sunscreen, and can be used to make up removing pads or massaging it in. After washing with this your skin feels amazingly soft and hydrated, even after another wash with a gentle foaming cleanser. It doesn’t seem to have any exfoliating actives, yet, the skin feels like it got a light treatment of lactic acid of some sort. In many ways, it does exactly what it says it does! And I was happily surprised. I just personally would love it if they toned down on the perfume in this or made a version for sensitive skin.
Sadly, The Face Shop doesn’t seem to focus or know sensitive skin at all! As their products for sensitive skin contains ingredients like Citrus oils, Lavender oil/extract, Anise and Sage extract that are known to cause irritation. Very disappointing. I really want to try Korean and Asian brands, but I see this trend of wanting to use more natural products and usually end up making a huge cocktail of active and irritating ingredients. And with my own experiments, my skin just do better with the “less is more” approach.
EDIT: I’ve since this post had a period of using it every day instead of micellar water. It removes water-proof makeup extremely well, and the fragrance has not affected my skin negatively. I’ve seen smaller pores and my skin has become softer and more even both in texture and tone since using it daily. I’m considering repurchasing, but I want to find something similar with either no to milder fragrance.