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MY EIGHT FAVORITE SKINCARE PRODUCTS

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My earliest skincare memories are of my mother’s blue facial mask that morphed into a Halloween fright mask when it dried and paralyzed the skin around her mouth and eyes. At ten years of age, I thought this was hysterical. Other than washing my face with soap and water and using OJ’s Beauty Lotion, I don’t remember having a skincare regime until I was in my early twenties and started using Clinique’s toner, day cream and night cream. It wasn’t long before I made friends with the women behind the beauty counter, and I moved on to Orlane. 

Perhaps the best thing I’ve done to take care of my skin was when I started wearing wide brim hats in my mid-twenties.

ONE OF MY VINTAGE FRANK OLIVE HATS

Twice a year, New York hat designer, Frank Olive, brought his trunk show to Frost Brothers in San Antonio, where I fell in love with his giant, natural straw hats. My adventurous lifestyle was hard on hats, and I wound up buying a new hat from Frank almost every year. The wider brimmed the better, because they shielded my face from the sun.

NEW MEXICO, DIGGING FOR CRYSTALS, late 1970’s.
I’M WEARING MY GIANT HAT, A WHITE POET’S BLOUSE, BLUE JEANS AND MY BEAT UP LUCCHESE BOOTS. LIKE HATS, I WAS HARD ON BOOTS.

Since I spent a big part of every year on a boat, scuba diving and snorkeling in Mexico, Belize, the Bahamas and the Virgin Islands, plus I dug for Maya artifacts in Mexico, as well as minerals and crystals in Arizona and New Mexico, big hats were my skin’s saving grace.

NISSAN GRAN PRIX, SAN ANTONIO, 9/87

FIESTA WITH MY FRIEND TERRY, GAYLE’S HUSBAND, 4/89

FIESTA WITH MY FRIEND, GAYLE, 4/10

My hats are so big they almost need their own airline seat.

Whether we were in the ocean, the jungle, or the mountains, the other smart thing I did for my skin was to wear sunscreen under long-sleeved shirts and long pants. I can only imagine what the residents of the off-the-beaten-path Mexican villages thought when I wandered into their midst, wearing a giant hat.

In my forties, I started buying my skincare products from Anya, my friend and aesthetician. Because the ingredients we put on our body are absorbed into our bloodstream, Anya has always been a stickler for clean ingredients. She researched skincare products and bought them from small batch manufacturers whose lines were preservative-free. Some things required refrigeration, but my skin loved them all. 

In 2004, I was diagnosed with estrogen positive breast cancer, but because of Anya, I was already avoiding preservatives in my skin creams. Preservatives made with parabens can have an estrogen-like effect in the body and can fuel the growth of the cancer I had. As a result I stay away from methyl, ethyl, propyl, butyl and isobutyl paraben.

Because of Covid, Anya is no longer doing business. Oh, how I miss her. xoxoxo! We talked about everything. Now the skincare products I’m using are based on my own research and a desire to avoid estrogen-like substances. I know there are other great products out there, but many are too expensive for me.

FYI, I have not received any form of compensation for this post, but I am an Amazon Associate and earn commissions from qualifying purchases. I’m sharing these with you because that’s what girlfriends do. 

• Clinique Take the Day Off Makeup Remover: While this can remove all of your makeup, I use it to remove eye makeup only. Put a small amount on a cotton pad, wipe gently. It comes off instantly, and is easy on your skin.

• DERMA-E Firming DMA Cleanser: I use this to wash my face morning and night, then pat my face somewhat dry. While my skin is damp, I use their toner, followed by DERMA-E’s serums or creams. Don’t forget to change your hand towels every few days to avoid leaving bacteria on your skin.

• DERMA-E Essentials Radiance Toner: At night this alcohol-free toner removes any residual makeup the cleanser didn’t get. In the morning I also use it after the cleanser and before the firming serum and cream. The glycolic acid has an exfoliating effect and helps reduce fine lines and dark spots.

• DERMA-E Advanced Peptides & Collagen Serum: At night, while my skin’s still damp, I put this on after the toner. If our skin is damp the creams/serums lock in that moisture. 

• DERMA-E Ultra Hydrating Serum: At night I put this on right after the Collagen Serum. It contains Hyaluronic Acid, which is a sugar molecule that occurs naturally in the skin and helps bind water to collagen, trapping it in the skin.

• DERMA -E Hydrating Night Cream: At night I put this on over the other two serums. This product also contains Hyaluronic Acid.

• DERMA-E Firming DMAE Serum: In the morning, after washing with the Firming DMA Cleanser and using the toner, I apply this firming serum while my skin’s damp. It contains Alpha Lipoic Acid which reduces fine lines and wrinkles and refines the texture of your skin. The Cleanser I mentioned above also contains Alpha Lipoic Acid.

• Simply Venom Day Cream: Next I immediately apply this day cream over the DERMA-E Firming Serum. Then I wait about 20 minutes, until it’s absorbed into my skin, before I apply my foundation. This way you don’t get any “pilling” of the cream with your foundation. If you don’t use makeup, you’re good to go other than maybe a sunscreen. Sometimes if my skin feels dry, and I’m not wearing makeup that day, I apply the same creams I use at night because they feed my skin. 

Love, Brenda

20 Comments

  • Reply Lynn October 9, 2021 at 9:10 am

    I love skin care posts, especially with affordable products! Thank you.

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace October 13, 2021 at 12:56 pm

      You’re welcome, Lynn! I’m glad you got something out of this. xoxo, Brenda

  • Reply Barbara October 9, 2021 at 9:40 am

    So that’s what’s wrong with my skin! I never wore a hat. When I think about it it makes sense, but too late to do anything about it. I will try some of the products you mentioned. Thanks for sharing your secrets.

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace October 13, 2021 at 12:57 pm

      LOL!!! I doubt your skin’s in bad shape and it’s NEVER TOO LATE!! It’s never too late to do anything! xoxo, Brenda

  • Reply Beckye October 9, 2021 at 12:23 pm

    Thank you so much! My breast cancer was ER positive so I’m glad to know what to avoid. Also glad to know what’s in the good products and what they do. I had wondered if you still used venom. I remember you posting about it years ago so will check it out along with all of these other products! Obviously they are working well for you! Thanks for sharing your wisdom and beauty secrets!

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace October 13, 2021 at 1:03 pm

      Becky, Yes, we need to remain vigilant about taking estrogen and putting anything that mimics estrogen on our skin. That includes shampoo and deodorant. It doesn’t mean our breast cancer might not return, but we’re lowering our risk. Also keeping our weight down helps, because if we’re pear shaped and have a thick midriff, that’s where we carry our estrogen. My problem’s never been excessive wrinkles. It’s the muscles underneath my skin. I’m a sagger. I should have made one of those antigravity masks Loretta Young wore. https://1010parkplace.com/silence-of-the-jowls/ xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply Beckye October 9, 2021 at 12:49 pm

    P.S. I’ve loved your big straw hats so checking those out too!

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace October 13, 2021 at 1:06 pm

      I love big hats, but you may need to get past feeling self-conscious wearing one, but I don’t care. xoxox, B

  • Reply Connie October 9, 2021 at 1:46 pm

    “ I’m sharing these with you because that’s what girlfriends do.”
    LOVE reading your recommendations!

  • Reply Cynthia Hamilton Urquhart October 9, 2021 at 4:02 pm

    You have such beautiful skin that I just have to try these out. Thank you for the tips!!

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace October 13, 2021 at 1:08 pm

      Thank you, Cynthia! You have the cold to contend with where you live. I imagine your skin takes a beating unless you’re well-hydrated and use good skin care. xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply Linda Winder October 9, 2021 at 4:53 pm

    Another fabulously relatable post!!! Clinique was my go to for most of my adult life! My 91 year old Mom deceased swore by Pond’s cold cream and did not have one wrinkle. Go figure! Going to checkout Derma-E line for sure. ❤️

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace October 13, 2021 at 1:10 pm

      Hello my newest friend and doppelgänger! How’s your week been? I think you’ll like Derma-E. I’ve used it for over 10 years. xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply Donna Nance October 9, 2021 at 7:31 pm

    You do have very good skin! Your diligent care and the huge hat have helped. Love the hat! I have used Clinique in the past and are unfamiliar with the other products. Have to check them out. Have a fabulous week! xoxo Donna

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace October 13, 2021 at 1:12 pm

      Thanks, Donna! While I’ve taken care of my skin, I didn’t do anything about gravity, so it’s having its way with me. xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply Sandra Sallin October 11, 2021 at 3:30 pm

    So so stylish. Gee, I could wear a big hat with sunglasses and no one would know that I didn’t have makeup on or that I looked like a mess. Great idea!!!

    • Reply 1010ParkPlace October 13, 2021 at 1:13 pm

      That’s right, Sandra, and now that we wear masks… We’d be another version of the Invisible Man! I know you remember him from the movies. xoxox, Brenda

  • Reply LA CONTESSA October 11, 2021 at 3:51 pm

    I USE TAKE THE DAY OFF TOO JUST RECENTLY FOUND THAT IN THE LAST YEAR!I ORDER THE BALM FOR THE FACE SO FAR SO GOOD!
    GUESS I SHOULD READ THE LABEL!!
    XXX

    • Reply Brenda Coffee October 13, 2021 at 1:39 pm

      Contessa, I don’t use the Take the Day Off on my whole face because I prefer to let the Alpha Lypoic Acid in the Derma-E Cleanser work it’s magic on my fine lines. xoxo, Brenda

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