I have been so excited about putting this post together! PaleOMG continues to grow with expanding from food, to fitness, to fashion and now I’m dipping my toes into some beauty and even some travel coming up! I’ve expanded so much in the last couple years because I continue to grow and change and my interests do as well! It sucks I even have to preface this, but I do: If this kind of post does not interest you (well, I don’t know why you even opened the post then…duh), if you don’t care about skincare or beauty, that is totally fine. No need to tell me, no need to comment. If you are just interested in food, then check out my 650 FREE recipes. I can guarantee that you have not tried all 650 recipes. This sort of post interests others and it interests me, so I will continue to share posts like this in the future!

BUT ANYWAYS, let’s talk beauty!! Over the past year, I decided to really concentrate on getting my skin to look its best. I’ve been in the sun my entire life, I had cystic acne years ago that led to a lot of scarring, and I’m getting older. No, I’m not old, I’m just getting to the age that I can see my skin not bouncing back like it used to. So after talking to a friend in town with absolutely beautiful skin, I was able to find a medical esthetician in my area and began seeing her monthly to work on my skin.

But let’s quickly go back to the beginning. Back to when I had acne. Because of how much I was working out (hormone imbalance) and because of some of the foods I was eating, my skin was terrible. But even with working out less and removing those foods, I still had acne and depleted every option and finally went on accutane. If you want to read about my experience, you can read it here. After accutane, my skin looked awesome! But then after exactly 1 year, acne began to sneak back in. So I began taking spironolactone (which I had tried pre-accutane and it hadn’t worked) and that helped A TON. But, I still had some acne. So I cut out eggs and nuts after someone on my instagram mentioned eggs causing some acne. With cutting out eggs, using spironolactone, drinking a sh*t ton of water every day, and using the products I’m listing below, I’m able to keep acne under control and my skin looking pretty smooth and better with each month! No, I’m not a person who uses only organic, food grade products. I use organic deodorant because that seems to work for me, but when I used coconut oil to clean my face or whatever organic product that was out there, my skin wasn’t it’s best.

I’m sharing on here what I use. I’m not saying you should use it or even that it’s the best product of all products. This post is not sponsored by anyone and no one has given me free sh*t. There are plenty of things out there that have worked for other people and not for me. I am all about eating clean food, but I am also all about modern medicine and technology. I will always work out my hardest and eat my best, but if there is something out there that can help me age better and feel better in my skin, I’m all for it. So let’s get on with it!  In case you didn’t read my accutane post, here is a photo of what my skin looked like in 2013.

 

And here is what it looks like now, 100% break out free on this day! Make up free version:

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Make up version:

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So let’s talk about daily routine. First, I’ll talk about skincare then we can chat makeup!

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My morning routine includes three things in this order:

  1. Mandelic acid
  2. Vitamin C serum
  3. Wink Eye Rejuvenation Cream
  4. Some sort of SPF – I like Cetaphil for my face sunscreen and I also LOVE Sanitas Solar Block (I just wish it was waterproof)

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At night, I use these 5 things in this order:

  1. Makeup remover pads (when I do wear makeup)
  2. Mandelic acid face wash
  3. Mandelic acid daily repair pads
  4. Vitamic A serum
  5. Derm-A-Renew Formula
  6. Cetaphil face lotion (or any fragrance free lotion I have on hand)

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I had to start slow with using all these products together because it can dry your skin out real fast. So if my skin ever does get dry, I just cut back a little bit and don’t use every product. But when I am able to, I wake up in the morning and my skin seriously looks better than it did the night before.

Now let’s talk about makeup. I put on full makeup probably 2 times per week. Most days all I do is fill in my eyebrows, put on a little concealer under my eyes and a bit of bronzer because my face is pretty pale from constantly wearing a hat and wearing sunscreen and then I’ll use a little mascara. I work at home or at the gym, so I don’t need much but I do feel better when I put a little bit on. It just makes me feel like I still have my life together when I might be in my pajamas all day cooking.

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For full makeup days, this is what it looks like:

  1. I use Jane Iredale Under Eye Concealer under my eyes with a concealer brush and blend it with a sponge applicator.
  2. I next use Jane Iredale Loose Mineral Powder (which also has SPF 20) with powder brush all over my face. This powder is great because it can be minimal coverage or you can really get amazing coverage. And it looks great for photos! Next, I use a pressed powder in a darker color to apply in the shadows of my face. So by my cheekbones, top of forehead, around the bottom of my face and onto my neck, with this angled brush. Lastly, I use just a little bit of Too Faced Blush and then use Hourglass Lighting Powder right below my eyes and above my cheekbones to get a little shimmer and shine and then on the ridge of my nose.

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  1. Next, I move on to the eyebrows and eyes. I recently got my eyebrows microbladed and I was originally going to talk about it in this post. BUT my lovely eyebrow lady does half the hair lines that would normally go in, just so you’re not super freaked out when you look in the mirror and they look like they are drawn on in permanent marker. She’s kind. Then you go in 4 weeks later and she fills the rest in and the missing spots that didn’t take or faded. So come middle of August, I go in for my second appointment and then I will be doing a full post about my experience. I just didn’t want to give you my feedback until the full procedure was done! So stay tuned! Anywho, eyebrows. I fill mine in with Anastasia Dipbrow Waterproof Pomade using a brow brush.
  2. I then move to the eyes. Just FYI, all makeup artists seem to start with eyes then move to face, but that’s just not how I do it. And I’m not a makeup artist nor did I go to school for it, so I just do what works for me. So, with my eyes, I use Smashbox Shadow Primer on my eyelids and then I use either Naked2 Palette or Naked3 Palette. I just LOVE those shadows! And for shadows, I have no rhyme or reason. I fill in a lighter color on my lid then mix in a dark color as I move up my eye then fill the crease in with a dark brown, grey or black! This chick is one of my favorites (and only, really) to watch on YouTube because she does stunning makeup, and she IS stunning! If you’re trying to figure out eyeshadows and how to apply, she has all kinds of videos!
  3. After lids, I do my eyeliner. I get questions all the time about eyeliner and I’m DEFINITELY no pro, I just do what I like, and I like the cat eye look. I use this Skinny Liquid Eyeliner to make it easier to apply and more precise, but there are tons of other products out there to choose from. If you’re wondering how to do a cat eye look, there are also a million tutorials. Here’s a super simple one! After I do my eyeliner, I apply Loreal Telescopic Mascara. This has been my favorite mascara since college, I love it!! If I’m wearing fake eye lashes that day, I use Ardell Lashes. These aren’t super fancy lashes but they do they trick and I can reuse them a lot of the time. I apply them with Duo Lash Glue and they stay in place like a mother. I’ve done full on sweaty CrossFit workouts with these lashes on and they don’t budge! It took a while to get the hang of putting on my own lashes, but you get it down the more you do it, just like anything!
  4. Lastly, I like to put white liner on the bottom lid of my eye because I think it just makes your eye pop and look more alert!

That’s it! I use all kinds of different lip colors together and just play around with them depending what I’m wearing!

Now let’s talk about some “procedure” stuff I’ve done! Like I said above, I did microblading, but I’ll be talking about that when it’s all over. I’ve never gotten eyelash extensions because I don’t want to keep up with it and I don’t like how they look when it’s time to get them redone. I’ve also never had my lips filled (obviously, they’re thin AF) even though I’ve always had a little interest in it. I just know very few women who have had their lips done and it’s not completely obvious. And I just don’t want that. The better I get at makeup, the better I will be at overfilling my lip liner. I’ve also heard about permanent makeup for your lips, so if my eyebrow lady decides to do that, I may give that a go. But that’s for another topic, another day!

What I have done is plenty of chemical peels. I’ve done numerous ones over the years and love them, but they definitely range depending on the person who does them. I use to go to a well known plastic surgery center here in Colorado to their facial aesthetics department to get chemical peels and the last time, she burned me pretty bad and it took MONTHS to heal. So make sure you don’t trust just anyone. I love chemical peels (even though they suck to heal from) because they make your skin glow and look younger. I will continue to do them every 6 month to 1 year to keep my skin looking younger as I age.

I also see my medical esthetician every 4-6 weeks. Every time I go in, she does extractions if I have any breakouts, then does dermaplane which is pretty much shaving your face to take off the top layer of dead skin and the fine hairs. She then does different treatments such as BBL Broadband light to help with fine lines, wrinkles, tone/color and skin tightening. The dark spots she removes are always the most obvious and make my skin look so much smoother. I’ve done these treatments with her for probably less than a year and my skin has never looked better. She is truly amazing. I also recently did another procedure with her (which I mentioned on snapchat that I would tell you guys about)!

This procedure is called ProFractional. When I told my esthetician that I was starting to see some deeper lines around my smile and that I didn’t want to do fillers, she mentioned ProFractional. It resurfaces the skin and rebuilds the collagen, so you’re rebuilding new collagen to help with these fine lines (unlike fillers, where you are just filling it). You can read all the science stuff about it here. They numb your face before and mine may have worn off a bit, but I can tell you that it was absolutely the most painful thing I’ve ever done. Ever. And you bleed a lot, which makes it more dramatic afterwards. I was questioning if I should even show you the photos, but I’m going to since all I’ve ever done on this blog is be completely 100% transparent. So here ya go!

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Frightening, right?! But this is over 5 days, so you can see that it heels pretty quickly. On the first day, I went straight home and just worked from home. But I went out and about all other days, just put a hat on and had to explain a few things to people on the gym. I was able to put makeup on at day 4, when the scabbing started to go down. Even on day 5, it’s still just a tad swollen, but 2 weeks out, I was really able to see the difference. I didn’t take a real before and after photo, and I apologize for that, but I truly was able to see a huge difference in fine lines and wrinkles by my smile and cheeks. Will I do it again? Yes, but it will have to be probably a year out, when I have forgotten how painful it was. And when my husband is out of town so he’s not questioning why the hell I’m doing this to myself. Just FYI, this is how I felt…

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Last but not least, I also get botox in my forehead. I was questioning if I should say this because people FREAK OUT about it, but that’s because they just don’t know anything about it. If you think Jennifer Aniston of JLo or Gwen Stefani or whoever else is aging well out there hasn’t had botox and they just have great genes, you’re an idiot. I started noticing wrinkles sticking a couple years ago and I did something about it and I’m so glad I did. It just keeps those lines from getting deeper. I can also say that just like with chemical peels, not everyone who does Botox is trustworthy. The person I go to now is 10 million times better, it’s not painful with her AND it doesn’t feel quite as weird as it has when injected by someone else. She is by far the best I’ve been to. I also only get it done every 6 months or so, so it’s not something I have to do on a monthly basis or anything like that.

So there ya go! That’s what I do. It’s a sh*t ton of different stuff, but it’s something that is important to me. I take such good care of my body and I want to do the same to my skin as well. I’ll probably do more things in the future and share them with you here because I really wish more people would share their “secrets” and what they have done. I also wish people would show the ugly side of it. Sure, it’s great to see results, but showing what you went through to get there, I think is important also.

If you are in the Denver area, here is the information of who I use for my skin:

  1. Shawn Haviland at Cherry Hills Facial Aesthetics 720-459-7960
  2. Marci Tarango at Cherry Hills Facial Aesthetics 720-459-7960

Again, this post was not sponsored. I use some affiliate links for makeup, but I’ve paid for all the makeup, treatments and procedures I’ve had done. I’m just very happy with my experiences with these two people and wanted to share it with you, in case you are in the Denver area!

If you have questions, please leave them here. I only answer emails once a week so I wouldn’t want to miss yours or not get back to it for a while. Again, if this post does not interest you (not sure why you’ve read this far) or you don’t agree with what I do for my own skin, no need to tell me. I do what works FOR ME and I share that information, that is it. I am not recommending it to others, I am not a doctor or a specialist, I am merely a person who is sharing what I have done. Period. So again, no need to leave mean comments or hateful words, those comments will be erased.

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283 Comments

  1. Erin says:

    Hi Juli!

    You’re awesome, thanks for sharing all this into such detail! Did Shawn your esthetician move practices? I clicked on the link and can’t find her on their site anymore!?

    1. juli says:

      she did! BUT she will be working somewhere else soon and then I will update that information! she’s just finding a new location as we speak!

  2. Amy says:

    Hi Juli!

    What “level” did you go on your ProFractional treatment? I started looking into it a little, and then over the weekend, Chelsea Handler posted her before and after on IG (Which means it’s now on all a million other websites too). She mentions she did level 75 but you can go up to 400. High five on being a trailblazer. 😉

    Thank you!

    BTW – I see you mentioning nuts as being a trigger for you. Damn. I need to consider that for me.

    1. juli says:

      she told me 300 with a second pass at 200. 75 sounds like it wouldn’t hurt near as much hahaha

  3. Crystal says:

    Just came here to ask about where I can find Shawn now, and saw you mentioned she’s moving offices! I’ll be waiting for the update!!! I feel like overnight these little forehead lines aren’t going away and it’s killing me ????. Time to up the skincare game! Appreciate all your honesty and transparency!!! (Do you still see the doc you mentioned in the post for your Botox?)

    1. juli says:

      i know that she got a space that starts in November so as soon as I get the update, I’ll definitely be updating the info on my site! as for botox, the last time i got it done was with dr. popham at that office! he is great! but if i go anywhere else, i’ll definitely update that as well!

  4. Jessica says:

    I just have to thank you for this post! I struggled with adult acne after my daughter was born, trying everything to get rid of it and having nothing work. I bought the Vivant products and after only two weeks my acne is gone! It was a game changer, thank you!
    Also loving the true crime podcasts as well, you should check out “In The Dark” – it’s a good one.

    1. juli says:

      that’s so amazing!! i really wish i would have found vivant products earlier. they are truly amazing! and yaaaasss, love in the dark!

  5. Sarah says:

    Hi Juli!

    First time writing you! I have wanted to write about my skin care issues since I saw this article but I have been super busy with graduate school. So sorry this post is sooo late!!

    First off- Love your recipes, blog and now podcast (including the swearing). Secondly, I can totally identify with you on having really bad skin! I have had acne ever since I hit puberty and I am 33 years old now! I had tons of acne and then it later became cystic acne in my early 20s. I tried everything! I think in retrospect I have really sensitive skin and probably have a dairy /gluten problem. So when I was using harsh acne treatments I was making the problem that much worse. In my early 20s I went on Accutane. This medicine really helped the acne for about 10 years but also made my skin dry and even more sensitive. I have finally found a regimen of products that really works well and has kept my skin from feeling tight and red, I have no acne and I feel like I am keeping my skin wrinkles to a minimum. (Unfortunately, in your early 30s you will likely have both acne and fine lines/wrinkles!!) I wanted to share the products in case some of the other readers find this helpful! Like I mentioned earlier, I am in grad school so I am super broke and can’t afford expensive products or skin treatments. As you can see I really like the products by CeraVe which is available at Wal-Mart.

    1- Sonicare Brush to wash my face morning and night with CeraVe Foaming Facial Cleanser.
    2- MAC toner called Marine Bright Softening Lotion.
    3- Around my eyes I use the CeraVe Eye Repair Cream.
    4- Forehead and neck (drier areas) CeraVe PM Facial Moisturizing Lotion
    5- Nose, cheeks, chin (oilier/acne prone areas) Philosophy Clear Days Ahead – oil free salicylic acne treatment and moisturizer.
    6- Make-up- Tarte Amazonian Clay tinted moisturizer and Tarte eye concealer.

    It is so great to have clear skin and to get compliments on your skin! People are always shocked when I say I used to have terrible skin. I can remember my Grandma taking pictures of my acne so she could send them to my aunts and show how bad it was!! (So embarrassing) With this routine I have had no problems for the past 3 years. I used Paula Begoun’s website Beautypedia to help me put together this group of products. I have found their recommendations to be spot on! I totally feel your pain when you describe your acne struggles. Maybe you or one of the other readers will find one of these products useful!

    http://www.paulaschoice.com/about-beautypedia/

    Sarah

  6. Annie says:

    Hi Juli – I’m a little late to the game here but I started taking Spironolactone about 6 months ago. While it’s been AWESOME for my skin, my doctor told me that I had to be on birth control while taking it. I decided to get a Paragard IUD because I’m wary of birth control pills and the effect it has on my emotions, weight, etc. The Paragard has been slowly killing me! It’s been a huge nuisance (constant spotting, cramping, back aches) and I have an appointment to have it removed. I was wondering if you have any personal experience/ advice on birth control? I really don’t want to take a pill but it may be my only option..

    1. juli says:

      honestly, i’m not the person to recommend that sort of thing. i take regular hormonal birth control and i’m not a fan of it, but it’s definitely hard to figure out what’s best. so i recommend talking to your doctor first and foremost!

  7. Alex M says:

    So I am seriously considering getting Botox around my eyes but I would love to start with a less invasive option and work up if I can (I just turned 25 but I have awful smile lines around my eyes and they’re genetic so I know they’ll just get worse). As far as wrinkle treatment, what do you feel has worked the best? I don’t want to spend a bunch on treatments that don’t work, so if Botox is my best option I’ll just look into that.

    I also scheduled an appointment at a well-reviewed plastic surgeon/medical spa in my area as well.

    Thanks so much!

    1. juli says:

      you’re not talking to a professional here, this is merely from experience, but i think profractional is by far the best for wrinkles, but under the eyes is different territory than the rest of the skin because of how thin the skin is. i would listen to a professional who you deeply trust and go from there, but i’ve had the best experience with profractional when it comes to wrinkles

  8. Kasey Lewis says:

    Juli, thanks for this post! Don’t know it you’ve heard of MakeUp Artist’s Choice, but they have a TON of products at great prices…I’ve been a customer for about 5 years now. What I love about them is they offer sample sizes to try and they have great customer service if you have questions about what to use for your skin type. Some things I’ve tried and haven’t been too impressed, but others I love. Melasma and general aging are my problems (early 40s). Just thought I’d pass their info along…I tell all my girlfriends about them.

    Long time fan, first time commenter 🙂
    Kasey

  9. Ashley says:

    Hi Juli! Thanks for sharing all of this. It’s so awesome that you found an esthetician you love!! For those of us outside of Denver, what kinds of things would you look for in an esthetician? What types of procedures that they offer are good signs versus red flags? And is there a difference between medical esthetician an otherwise? Is that a different kind of licensing? Maybe you don’t have these answers, but I have zero experience with this field, so anything you can share from experience or resources you can point out to understand all of this would be super helpful!

  10. Beth G. says:

    Thank you for the make up products! Your make up looks great! I’m always looking for better/ healthier products. Quick question: on your make up post you list that you use the Jane iredale highlighter on your cheekbones and under the eye and on this post there’s a link for the hourglass lightening powder. Which one do you recommend or both? Thanks!

    1. juli says:

      i honestly use both!! the highlighter stick is just a little more intense so i use that on full makeup days! but i love both!