Beauty

Your Best Skin with Paula’s Choice

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My skin is a curse and a blessing at the same time. It’s a curse because I’m still dealing with acne breakouts at the age of 36 and have greasy skin despite washing it twice a day. I also have acne scars, not the deep, ice pick scars, but red marks that take forever to fade after a blemish is long gone. And don’t even get me started on my pores! Some of them are very large and look like random holes in my skin.

On the flip side, my oily skin has also helped me. I don’t really have wrinkles yet and I credit my oily skin (and good genes) to that fact! I will say that I’m noticing I’m not as oily as I was when I was a teenager. I had way more breakouts back then!

I will admit that I wasn’t giving my skin as much TLC as I should have been. I washed it daily and moisturized (when I remembered). I also use an eye cream to prevent wrinkles. I wasn’t really focused on any specific area of my skin. I just wanted it to feel clean and fresh.

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This post contains affiliate links.

I was recently introduced to Paula’s Choice Skincare. I’d never heard of the line before, but after checking out their site, I learned who Paula is. I did recognize her name after reading her biography! I read one of her books awhile back.

I like to check out the beauty products I plan to try prior to using them. I feel more comfortable knowing about the brand and their background, in addition to the specifics of the products I’ll be trying. I learned that Paula’s Choice Skincare are fully committed to customer advocacy and education. They want their customers to feel confident about the products they use on their skin and deliver on their promises. I like that they treat a variety of skin types and conditions including wrinkles, rosacea, acne and large pores.

Some key items to note about Paula’s Choice products:

  • They are made in the USA and all their ingredients are domestically-sourced. Paula’s Choice is located in Seattle, Washington’s International District, but their products are delivered all over the world, including Canada.
  • They are non-irritating. They contain no added fragrance, dyes or ingredients that can harm the health and function of your skin. That’s a big plus for me with my oily, yet sensitive skin!
  • They aren’t tested on animals. Paula’s Choice is part of the Leaping Bunny program. That means they have not only eliminated animal testing in their company, but also in their suppliers of their ingredients. Paula’s Choice is an animal-friendly workplace and even some of their employees bring their dogs to work. Big thumbs up there!

Another item I really appreciated with Paula’s Choice was how helpful and informative they were. I had a phone consultation with one of their representatives who asked me about my skin and recommended products based on my needs and wants.

Based on my consultation, Paula’s Choice sent me a variety of products to try out. My main goal was to control my oily skin. I also wanted to combat breakouts, prevent lines and wrinkles, shrink pores and fade acne scars. I have a whole laundry list of issues!

These are the products from Paula’s Choice that I’ve been testing out for the past couple weeks. Don’t worry I’ll explain more what each one is!

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The core of my skincare routine is Paula’s Choice Skin Balancing collection. It’s designed for oily/combination skin and is good for anti-aging, enlarged pores, blackheads and wrinkles. As we all know, acne doesn’t just affect teens so it’s great to see that they have a line that helps people with acne and aging skin. It consists of seven products – a cleanser, toner, exfoliant, day moisturizer with SPF, night moisturizer, treatment and a treatment mask.  Look for the Advanced Kit that includes all seven products. It’s priced at $149 for everything.

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At first I thought how am I going to remember what order to use these products in! It’s a good thing that practice makes perfect and after a couple days of using the products, I didn’t need to consult the little booklet to see what order to use them in. I even started to look forward to my little skincare routine. I knew I was doing something nice for myself and helping my skin to look and feel better.

Step one is the Skin Balancing Oil-Reducing Cleanser to remove makeup and clean the skin. I found it very gentle and liked that it didn’t leave a greasy residue on my skin after rinsing it off.

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Next is the Skin Balancing Pore-Reducing Toner to repair skin and balance the complexion.

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Once the skin is cleansed and toned, it’s time for the Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid to exfoliate the skin. It’s not the typical exfoliant that I’ve used in the past where you rub rough grit on your face. It’s not gritty at all. Instead, it’s a clear liquid that contains salicylic acid. It’s a leave-on exfoliant that removes old skin cells, unclogs and shrinks pores, reduces redness and more. Just apply on your face and continue on to the next step. No rinsing required.

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My favourite product of the collection is the Skin Balancing Super Antioxidant Concentrate Serum with Retinol. It goes on silky smooth and my skin feels so soft afterwards! It’s not the least bit greasy. It shrinks enlarged pores and smooths skin. You only need a little bit because it’s very concentrated.

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I also used some supplementary products outside the Skin Balancing collection to target specific skin care concerns. Resist C15 Super Booster targets uneven skin tone and smooths, firms and brightens skin. I squirt a few drops on my face after and gently massage in my skin. It’s great for people with blemishes or other skin imperfections. I had a hormonal acne breakout and applied the product over top.

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For the longest time, I was completely against moisturizers. I figured why moisturize when my skin is already oily enough? Wrong wrong wrong! I think moisturizing has helped my skin become less oily! That’s one step I never skip anymore. The Skin Balancing collection has a Day Moisturizer with SPF to protect the skin from the sun and keep it properly hydrated during the day. I normally wait a couple minutes for the moisturizer to fully absorb and then apply my foundation.

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At night, I apply the Night Moisturizer to keep my skin hydrated while I get my “beauty rest” and work its magic on preventing fine lines and wrinkles.

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The final step in my night-time routine is the application of BHA 9, a spot treatment, for any imperfections like pimples, red marks, large pores, etc. It’s also very concentrated so a small amount will do the trick! I don’t feel it on my skin unless I have a breakout that has popped. It stings for the first few seconds and then goes away.

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Once a week, I treat myself with the Skin Balancing Oil-Absorbing Mask. I’ve been putting it on and then taking a bath. By the time I’m done, it’s ready to come off. It absorbs oil, gets rid of blackheads and smooths skin. I love how my skin feels after using this mask!

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Some people say they feel naked without their lipstick. For me, it’s the foundation! I need it. I liked that Paula’s Choice Best Face Forward Foundation is light and doesn’t go on thick. It helps to even out my complexion and you can’t even tell I’m wearing it. That’s the best part. It’s great that it has SPF 25 in it because I’m also forgetful sometimes to put on sunscreen.

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The Nude Mattes Eyeshadow Palette has been a dream to use! I love the neutral colours in the collection and how flawlessly they go on. Paula’s Choice consulted with makeup expert and YouTube star, Wayne Goss, to create this fabulous collection.

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I’m very happy with my experience so far with Paula’s Choice. They are excellent quality (and value) and agree with my skin. I can already see improvements in just the short time I’ve been using them. My skin isn’t nearly as oily and red. I also don’t notice the acne scars as much – yay!

Paula’s Choice also has a 100% money back guarantee. If you’re not satisfied with your experience, they will give you a full refund or credit for products returned within 60 days. I love that they stand behind their products like this!

Refer-A-Friend Program

Paula’s Choice also has a Refer-A-Friend program where you can earn free credits to your account. Simply make an account at Paula’s Choice and invite your friend to do the same. When your friend places their first order, you’ll both receive a $10 credit in your accounts. You’ll have a personalized referral link you can share with friends and family via email, Facebook and Twitter. The more friends you refer, the more credits you get. Sweet!

Discount Code + Free Shipping

Receive 20% off any one item at Paula’s Choice with the discount code PRSTACIE20. The discount will be applied to the highest item in your cart. Note this offer cannot be combined with other offers or applied to previous purchases. In addition, you’ll receive FREE SHIPPING if you live in either USA or Canada. This special offer expires on April 30, 2015.

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Stacie Vaughan

Stacie is the mom of two girls and lives in Ontario, Canada. She enjoys cooking/baking, photography, reading, DIY and is fueled by lots of coffee!

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