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DIY: ItWorks! Wraps Dupe | DIY: Anti-Cellulite Wrap

All over my Instagram feed I keep seeing these It Works! Wraps and sales people claiming you can lose massive amounts of weight in just one wrap! Upon closer inspection of the wraps, I noticed a lot of them seemed to just be saran wrap. I was told this was to keep the actual wrap, which is just one small section, in place. $25 for a wrap that doesn’t even stay on without household help?! I couldn’t bear the thought of spending that kind of money on a skin wrap, so I decided to do some research.

The ingredients in the wrap are quality vita and skin hydrators and plant extracts, but nothing that I can see that will aid in any weight loss or skin shrinkage. I decided to try a DIY wrap and see what I could come up with using basic ingredients and saran wrap. Please note, I have not tried the It Works! Wraps, so I cannot compare my results to that of a wrap, this is just a dupe for the wraps if you don’t want to spend the money.

Knowing that caffeine has been proven to help with cellulite and tightening the skin temporarily, I decided to start with coffee. I brewed a cup and kept the grounds. I also ripped open a bag of green tea and mixed the leaves with the brewed coffee grounds into a grainy paste. I then looked at what else I had on hand, and threw in some coconut oil, a bit of honey, vitamin E I oil, and I decided to use some of the brewed coffee liquid instead of water to make everything nice and creamy. I ended up with a brown oily, muddy chunky mixture.
DIY Anti Cellulite Cream | DIY ItWorks Wrap

I decided to pop it in the freezer and broke it up each time the top layer froze over.

DIY ItWorks Wrap | DIY Anti Cellulite | Skin Care blog

Once it was frozen solid, I smashed all the chunks into little crumbles.

DIY Anti Cellulite Serum | It Works | Wraps| Weight Loss DIY

The reason for doing this was because I had used coffee masks and scrubs before and they are always really messy, I figured solidifying the coconut oil by freezing would help hold everything together. It did a good job of keeping the mess at bay, but don’t expect it to just spread like butter. I ended up taking chunks of the mixture and wrapping around them and once I was wrapped up tight and my body heat allowed the mixture to melt, rubbed it on through the plastic wrap. This method kept everything fairly neat. Wrapping yourself in saran wrap makes you feel silly, but make sure you get it wound tightly all around! I left mine out for about 2 hours while I did some work, and then showered to remove it.

It Works Wraps | DIY It Works Wrap | Chubby Belly | Anti Cellulite | Cheap Anti Cellulite Fix

I didn’t notice any crazy weight loss, but I did notice my skin had tightened making me look a size smaller! My skin was super soft and visibly smoother as well. I was fairly impressed with my DIY version, because I didn’t expect much except freshly exfoliated skin, but it actually did work. I will definitely do this before any major event, but it really is too messy to do often unless you freeze it each time. If you try this share your results! I would love to know if it worked for you too! If you use the ItWorks! Wraps let me know how they compare!

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Disclosure and what it means to me

It is common today for many bloggers, and honestly, regular people to receive items for free in exchange for an honest review on the product/item, or to tell others about it. What is not so common though, is people discussing how they obtained the items or if a recommendation was required (not simply a review, but actually endorsing the product). When I first started reading blogs and watching YouTube videos, I suspiciously noticed they all sounded a lot like commercials. Not just the reviews, but the entire videos and blog posts! Digging deeper, I learned a lot of interesting things and I wanted to share my policy on disclosure and what I plan to do with my blog, and how that can effect what I am able to review.

I never want to sound like a commercial. Ever. I love being a product nerd, and as a makeup junkie sometimes I have to curb my habit and focus on priorities. It happens. Before I even started blogging, I had Yelp and Amazon and Facebook groups to share my opinions on products and services, I always felt it was a disservice for people trying to purchase something not to know anything about it other than what was told to them by the company or people trying to sell it, and I still feel that way today, even from a business stand point.

No ONE brand can bring you the best of everything, it just isn’t happening. Many of us associate a brand as good and will buy many products simply because they are from a brand we like, but we all know some of those products end up returned or unused because they just didn’t work as well as we hoped. That’s ok. There are also many brands that produce similar items, like lipstick, and they’re ALL good. That’s ok too. In the blogger/vlogger world though, when a company chooses to support (SPONSOR) you they expect you to fully endorse their brand and only their brand and in some cases, not doing so can lead to legal action. While I would love to make money blogging, and receive thousands of dollars in free items, the reality is I am not going to rave about a product that sucks or does not perform well for me or does not live up to its advertising. What companies fail to remember, and people never forget is that what works for someone, may not work for someone else! We are all not fit into the same mold, we all have different skin types, eye shapes, skin textures, skin colors, etc. it is IMPOSSIBLE for any single one product to fit the needs of every person on this planet! Get over it and accept that one blogger or ten out there may not like your product, it happens.

With that being said, often when a blogger writes a negative review about an item or a company, other companies will notice. Some may decide not to work with someone in case they might not like their product, and will choose others who have proven to rave about everything they get, or always have good reviews and never any bad ones, but to me that is dishonest. That is not reality, there are times when we simply do not like something, and if that happens with me I will be sure to let everyone know about it. Some products are great and something like packaging can make it dud, in sharing my opinion I want others to make their own choices about what they love and want to buy. Not because I shoved it down their throat. Products sent to me for review, will be reviewed, but all reviews will always be my own opinion. Good or bad. Unless someone is paying me to write an actual review for an item they sent me, I will not be disclosing how I obtained each and every item. I want the focus of every review to be about the product and how it works, as it should be!

DIY: At home spa series – 2 Ingredient brightening facial mask

So today I decided  I would treat myself to a little at home spa day and overdose on old episodes of Boardwalk Empire. I really love the whole DIY facial idea, I do them ALL the time and I save trips to the salon for when I need extractions or any other treatments better left to the pros.

When choosing a face mask I often mix up the ingredients based on any skin issues I am having, but I wanted to try a twist on a facial mask I had done before and liked. This facial mask only uses two ingredients and as soon as you peel it off you will see a beautiful difference in your skin! Your pores will be unclogged and your skin will just glow, all in under 20 minutes! You can also use your microwave for this if you want, but I prefer heating things on the stove because you have more control of how hot it gets, this is not important for this recipe, but some ingredients should not be heated much to preserve their properties.

So the first thing you have to do is gather your ingredients, for this one we need a packet of unflavored gelatin and a lemon:

DIY face mask ingredients by sunset park makeup artist Kimberly Ortega

Squeeze the lemon juice and heat up. Meanwhile, add the gelatin to a bowl.

Once the lemon juice is nice and warm, add it to the gelatin. The more you add the thinner the mask will be. Equal parts of gelatin to lemon juice is a good start.

DIY Brightening Face Mask for the skin by brooklyn makeup artist Kimberly Ortega

Mix. I like to make mine thinner for easier application. Smells so yummy!

Face Mask at home, DIY spa day, NYC makeup artist Kimberly Ortega

Apply to your face, and let dry. Avoid getting any on any facial hair or you will enjoy a free wax, if you get it on by accident just rinse that part off instead of peeling. Once you apply, enjoy looking like a plastic doll! lol

I made mine too runny! It was dripping EVERYWHERE! I’ve made this before, so try to use equal parts of lemon juice to gelatin.

Once it’s dry, it will start to crack and you can peel it right off. If you have any problems removing the mask or little bits stuck on your face you can easily rinse them off in warm water. It takes about 15-30 minutes to dry depending on how much you apply, it also has a slight tightening effect that I liked. Give a final rinse in cold water, apply some moisturizer, and enjoy the results! Easy Peasy!

 

10 Skin mistakes you’re probably making

For the longest time I would get little breakouts along my forehead and cheeks or chin and could never figure out why. I am very strict about my skin care routine, so this was really getting on my nerves, until one day I noticed some patterns in my breakouts and daily life that could be causing my breakouts. Here I list some common skin mistakes you are probably making and how to avoid them.
Common skin mistakes by makeup artist kimberly ortega brooklyn ny
1. Chatting on the cell phone all day.
When you’re glued to your phone, you kind of forget it’s attached to your face. If you aren’t cleaning your phone screen then all that bacteria from your fingers and face are just sitting there spreading themselves all around. Clean your phone screen at least once a day!
2. You wear glasses.
The reason for all those breakouts on my forehead and temples was partly my glasses. Sure, I cleaned my glasses when they got dirty, but I wear makeup almost daily and eventually I found some of it caked under the lens, hiding in the hinges, and under the nose pads. Make sure you are cleaning your glasses daily, or wiping them down with alcohol if you don’t wear makeup to avoid spreading bacteria.
3. You don’t drink water
Whenever someone tells me they don’t drink water, after my initial shock I start looking at their face. People who don’t drink water age faster, your skin needs moisture, from the inside AND the outside. Water also helps keep toxins flushed out of your body. Water IS life, so drink up and watch your skin plump up after your body is properly hydrated. I carry a giant bottle of water around with me all day and drink. I make sure I drink a second one at home. Space out your water consumption for best results and to avoid running to the bathroom every 10 minutes.
4. You eat like crap and never exercise
Sure a healthy weight or weight loss is a nice perk to eating well, but eating healthy foods leads to better skin too. If you can’t or won’t eat healthy fresh foods, then at least invest in quality supplements and get your vitamins that way. Your skin gets vitamins and water LAST as far as your body is concerned your vanity is the least of its worries. To reap the skin benefits of a healthy diet you must change your lifestyle, but I promise the perks extend beyond weight! Exercise increases blood circulation and keeps muscles firm.

5. You LOVE makeup
A common misconception is that makeup causes breakouts, but really, the failure to properly remove makeup causes breakouts.  You are leaving something full of chemicals and heavy ingredients in your skin, and it’s not enough to just wipe it off with some makeup remover and call it a day. You have to get it ALL off. No matter how tired you are, wash your face! I tend to do this when I get home so when I am ready for bed it isn’t such a chore. Keep in mind, some ingredients can be irritating to skin too, so you have to pay attention to what is inside your cosmetics and make sure nothing is bothering your skin. Bismuth and fragrance are usually big culprits for most people, although even something like talc can bother some skin types. Another culprit in this category? Not washing your makeup brushes!!! I am a little appalled by the number of clients and people I meet who say they never wash their makeup brushes. You are applying your makeup with a brush covered in old bacteria, old makeup, and dipping it into your makeup and on your clean face. STOP! It’s as gross as it sounds, and although the risk is slightly less when you only use everything on yourself, there still is a risk for breakouts, skin infections, and skin reactions.

6. You smoke
We all know smoking is bad for you, but it’s really terrible for your skin, you are basically surrounding your face in a cloud of toxins multiple times a day. Quit smoking and enjoy younger looking skin in just a few weeks. Not to mention all the other health benefits of quitting.
7. You love to tan
Growing up in the 90s, no one told us we HAD to wear sunscreen, in fact we mostly avoided it out of laziness or just because sunscreen was so heavy and greasy. These days we know the problems of skin cancer, sun spots, and skin damage caused by the sun. We also have access to tons of sunscreens that aren’t greasy or heavy at all, we have sprays, lotions, and sunscreen built-in to our makeup. There is no excuse to skip the sunscreen, and this is probably right up there with smoking for aging skin at a rapid pace. Slather on at least SPF 30 daily NOW and you will reap the rewards when you’re hitting old age.
8. You don’t sleep on your back
Did you know sleeping on your face causes wrinkles? Especially if you sleep on the same side? You may not realize it, but if you go to your dermatologist I bet they can tell you what side of your face you sleep on with you even saying anything! Sleeping on your back allows your skin to breathe, and it keeps your face off your pillow case. If you must sleep on your side, invest in silk or satin pillowcases and change them often. Changing them often prevents bacteria buildup, and using fabrics like silk or satin allow your face to glide over the fabric and are less likely to cause creasing and wrinkles in the skin from increased pressure.
9. You have a crazy schedule
Lack of sleep causes dark circles, dehydrates skin so wrinkles are more visible, and throws off the way your body functions by causing stress. Remember your beauty is your body’s LAST concern, if you don’t take care of your health it will show there first. Getting plenty of sleep is hard some times but make a schedule and stick to it until it becomes second nature. At least 7 hours is ideal but the more the better! Keep stress levels to a minimum as high levels of stress can affect your sleep schedule also.
10. You hate routine
Ask anyone with great skin their secrets and most will tell you about some awesome product they are using, but the reality is it’s not just the products you use, but how often you use them. If you are not consistent you will never know if a product truly works for you or not, and you won’t see results as intended. Not everyone needs the same skin routine, but you should be following the basics every day to keep your skin healthy and clean. Wash your face, keep it hydrated, don’t sleep in makeup. These little tips add up to healthy skin when done on a daily basis.
Are you making any of these mistakes? If so, I challenge you to keep up your skin care routine for a full 60 days! Let me know if you notice any changes after 60 days, many of you will see results even sooner than that! Remember that flawless makeup starts with a flawless base, so keep on top of your skin care and you won’t even need such heavy makeup anymore.