Being a first time mom at the age of 38 is very challenging and as much as possible, I still want to be able to take care of myself, not just my physiological health, but my external appearance as well. So the following blog post is a detailed account of the experiences my facial skin went through this year from February 18, 2016 up to April 26. It was first published on my old blog and I am transferring and updating it here to serve as a reference to future skin product reviews that I’ll be doing from now on here on my Momtraneur blog.
Furthermore, this post is not to generalize the effects of the various skin products I used because there so many factors concerned which is why effects on one’s skin may vary from person to person depending on existing variables like skin type, age, hormonal changes, genes, etc.
After April 2016, my facial skin has once again undergone a few more problems and changes . And so from May 2016 to present, Mahal and I have been experimenting with our own homemade soap, body and facial scrubs, plus other spa product concoctions which I’ll share with you once our skin product lineup is complete. For now, here is the long process I went through with skin products from NWorld, Black Pearl, Jericho, Proactive and Bio Oil. It’s a long read which I divided into several sections so better go get some popcorn. Hihihi! Thanks in advance for reading! (^_^)
My skin is not flawless nor perfect. It was just okay. Even as a teenager, I didn’t have much problems with it and I could survive by just putting makeup and my face would then look all fine and pretty.
Then when I got pregnant last year, so many things were off limits including the use of facial products like Proactive which I have been using since 2010. Add to that the fact that my hormones were going through the roof so aside from mood swings, over-fatigue, aches and pains brought about by my pregnancy, I was also having a major facial breakout much worse than when I was a teenager. It was disheartening but because I was a stay-at-home would-be mom all cooped up inside our small apartment in Dumaguete at that time, plus I was always asleep 15-16 hours a day and didn’t go out that much, it didn’t really bother me. Anyway, it was just Mahal who saw me day in and day out and he still loved me despite my ugly facial skin so it was fine.
My Skin During and After Pregnancy
Then I gave birth last November 17, 2015 in Alabang and the first thing I was excited about was the thought that finally, I can go back to using Proactive again. And perhaps, my hormones would already stabilize and my face would return to normal. Months passed… December… January… February. Nothing was working. White heads and pimples still kept popping on my face. I was starting to get depressed! I figured, maybe my hormones haven’t stabilized yet and maybe it will take a while longer than I expected. Then on my birthday, February 18, we were in Alabang Town Center checking out expensive bags (I was planning to buy a simple Louis Vuitton bag which I’ve been wanting to do for a long time now). Since there was no branch of LV there, we checked out other brands. As we were going out of Kate Spade, a beautiful Israeli woman named Janel Mor enticed me to get a free skin test which I agreed to. The rest of the experience I documented on my previous blog post: BLACK PEARL, JERICHO, MARISSA DEL MAR WELLNESS PACKAGE – INITIAL REVIEW
To make the long story short, I got enticed to buy expensive skin products that promised to give me back my smooth, youthful skin. So I bought several Jericho products for the face, Marissa del Mar wellness package that includes 24 body treatments and 10 facials plus the super expensive 24Karat Gold Cleopatra Mask from Black Pearl Institute. I was of course excited to use them! I felt like the end of my facial depression was near! How can I enjoy having an LV bag if my face is so ugly, right? The bag will always be there but my face could be damaged forever. Well, that was what Janel told me or rather, that was the essence of what she said when she sold me these products and I believed her. Of course thinking about it now, how I wish I could’ve just given the money to charity…. Sigh… Oh well….
Use of Jericho, Black Pearl 24 Karat Gold Cleopatra Mask and Marissa del Mar Facials
Days and weeks passed by and I would use the Jericho products religiously for about a month. I still have here the handwritten instruction of Janel Mor, the skincare specialist who sold me these products and told me which products to use and how often:
She also wrote down her name, the general area where she lives, her number and where to find her so I can avail of free gold facials.
She also gave me a gold card so I can avail of free gold facials once a month and 50% discount on all their Jericho products. This was as a thank you for buying an expensive package from her.
Go to this link if video doesn’t load:
Use of Proactive
So I stopped using all these super expensive skin products from Israel coz they were not working! What a waste of money! In one of our grocery runs, I dropped by Watsons and bought a new set of Proactive. I bought the small set good for one month costing about P2,000. Though it didn’t work right after I gave birth, I figured, my hormones must have subsided by then and I believe its benzoyl peroxide component will cure my pimples and whiteheads.
Days passed and I was starting to see improvement. Here’s a photo of me on March 30 (with makeup):
Advice from Dr. Rhia Gonzales Romano of Marissa Del Mar
I asked advice from one of their lovely staff, Miss Jacqueline Servales and their flawless resident dermatologist, Dr. Rhia Gonzales Romano. I told them my story and aired my grievance that the products I bought from their company which cost me hundreds of thousands of pesos are not working on my skin and what should be done? They were very pleasant and kind and really listened to me well. As a customer, it is important to feel like someone is hearing what you have to say and I’m glad that they did that. It pacified me and made me still believe in their products. Dr. Romano advised me to stop using the Black Pearl 24Karat Gold Cleopatra Mask if I believe that it caused me contact dermatitis. She also told me that the gold mask should not be used on pimple-laden skin. And I thought OMG! Janel Mor applied it on my pimply face that time she did a demo on me on my birthday at their stall in ATC (Alabang Town Center). This was because I didn’t know any better, I didn’t know that that was not the right thing to do. Dr. Romano said that the gold mask is best used on the face that is not breaking out with whiteheads and pimples and at the very least, the face should be clean. And I remember when it was first applied on my face, Janel didn’t even take all my makeup off and even advised me to not wash my face until the following day! No wonder my face, instead of improving, got worse! I really felt bad hearing all these things to the point of getting once again depressed about it. I should’ve used the money somewhere else! But Janel Mor and her other Israeli partner were so good at selling that I think I got “budol-budoled” (budol-budol is a local slang sort of saying getting scammed; according to Wikipedia “Budol-budol is a scam principally involving a bundle (budol) of cash padded inside with sheets of paper cut in the size of money. Only the exposed sides however are real money, everything in between are plain paper cuttings.”) Because I didn’t get the great skin these expensive products promised, I felt like I was scammed, or tricked into buying them. Or they were really just good sales people and I was stupid enough to have bought from them.
I haven’t yet tried to ask for a refund because one — I’m scared that I might just get enticed into buying more (those Israeli sales people are really very persuasive!) and two — a part of me still believes these products will work. I read some positive reviews about it like this one: http://www.womenstuff.co.za/cleopatra-facial-review/; and this: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.518420685002490.1073741851.275074466003781&type=3 … and I’m still hopeful that once my hormones stabilize and my zits are gone, then I can use it again to make the texture of my face even better.
So anyway, back to that Saturday afternoon at Marissa del Mar. Dr. Romano and Miss Servales, after looking at my face (I had two big zits on my forhead at that time, one was with pus), recommended that I use the anti-acne facial voucher. Dr. Romano also advised me to have an antibiotic injection done on my face. But because I didn’t anymore want to spend a single centavo on them after having felt like I was tricked by their sales people into buying their products in the first place (the injection would cost P1,500) and I went back to Proactive anyway, I said that the anti-acne facial would be enough. I have several other facial vouchers I want to use every two weeks and I believe those would be enough to improve the state of my facial skin. Plus, I didn’t like the idea of having my face injected with needle. I hate needles! My threshold for pain is very low and I just didn’t want to let my face undergo that kind of torture.
So I had the anti-acne facial. Again, it was so painful! After an hour, the spots that got pricked were inflamed but I was assured that they would subside the next day like before. Indeed, the inflammation subsided and I think I looked a lot better after that. Here’s a photo of me having the anti-acne facial on April 16:
Use of NWorld Nlighten Products
The following day, as Mahal and I were busy running errands, my classmate from elementary in St. Scho, Lanie Lucas, who had been messaging me in the past, asking me to try NWorld products, messaged me saying that she will be visiting me in Alabang and will be doing product demo on my face. I really didn’t want to but because I trust this girl having known here since my childhood days, I said okay.
NWorld Product Demo
My classmate from elementary in St. Scho. Marikina, Lanie Lucas Nafarrete, and her hubby visited me and offered me a free one week demo of NWorld products. Since I got pregnant, the state of the skin on my face has never been the same. I’ve been having the worst breakouts ever. It lessened a bit since I started using Black Pearl and Jericho products but there are still days when it seems to get worse. This was why I did an anti-acne facial at Marissa del Mar yesterday. My skin is still not how I want it to be so hopefully the #NWorld products will make a big difference after one week.
Here are my photos this evening from me still wearing makeup, to washing off my face with #NLighten O2 Bubble Cleanser, to applying Nlighten Facial Cleanser, eye gel, cc cushion, and cloud cream. They have an immediate lightening and dewey effect. They can be used everyday and night. It has spf and waterproof.
The official Day 1 of my NWorld morning regimen. My elementary classmate Lanie Lucas Nafarrete advised me to monitor so we can see specific changes… I hope my skin gets better and better everyday… (The camera is on auto mode when I took these photos and no editing was done para makita ko talaga ichura ng skin ko. Sana mawala na mga pimples and blemishes ko!!!)
Official Day 3 of my NWorld skincare regimen. Dahil stubborn tong pimple ko, Lanie Lucas Nafarrete asked me to stop using the O2 Bubble and CC cushion muna so we can heal my pimples. So what’s left are the premium collagen soap, cleanser, eye gel and cloud. I did that yesterday then today when I woke up. So far, the redness subsided, one pimple dried up, yung isa malapit na rin mag dry. Dun sa yesterday and today photo collage, hindi ko pa mashado makita ang differences but hopefully after 2 more days, mas umokey na.
Official Day 5 of using NWorld skin products. I think the reaction of my skin to the products has gotten worse. And it’s now getting itchy Lanie Lucas Nafarrete, I’m sorry but your products didn’t work on me. I’ll wash my face after I post this and go back to my other skin regimen. Umokey na to last Sunday eh before your demo. Huhuhu! :’-(
Lesson From All This
Again, all this happened last February to April 2016. My facial skin has once again undergone a few more changes after this and I stopped using Proactive because I discovered that prolonged use can cause dryness, flakes and therefore, more breakouts. From May to present, Mahal and I have been experimenting with our own homemade soap, scrub, spa product concoctions and I’ll share them with you once our lineup is complete.
Considering that being a first time mom at the age of 38 is already very hard — my energy levels are not like the way they used to before and I am already experiencing body aches and pains — I definitely do not need to have an acne breakout or some kind of skin disease just because my hormones are getting haywire from the pregnancy and child birth. Being a mom is really such a sacrifice and I can only hope that Tuz would appreciate all these pains, depression and sacrifices I am going through in order to bring him into this beautiful albeit imperfect world.
Having said that, I do not regret having a child. If there is any regret, it is that I didn’t have one sooner. But then again, the perfect partner just came into my life and I wouldn’t want anybody else to father my child either. It all just happened in God’s perfect time and if my skin would continue to suffer because of it, then so be it. But as long as I can do something about my face, then I would do everything in my power to do so. Though vanity is indeed such a sin for I let good money go down the drain just so I can somehow regain my youthful glow, wanting to be pretty or at least pleasant-looking on the outside still has its perks. It boosts my self-confidence making me do things that I wouldn’t be able to do had I been constantly problematic about my face; it makes me feel good about myself and therefore about my life, hence, helping me attract more blessings along the way.
I am thankful for these experiences, even the fact that I spent huge money to ease my pain. I do not want to do that again though. Lesson learned. But since it already happened, and I don’t want to dwell much anymore on the negative side of things, I just want to maximize the products and services I got from Jericho and Black Pearl. After all, dermatologist Dr. Rhia Gonzales said that I can enjoy the benefits of Black Pearl more if applied on my face that is not full of breakouts. And now that my skin is getting better, thanks to Proactive and Bio Oil, I can then enjoy the luxurious facials Marissa del Mar Wellness Institute has to offer.
To those who are experiencing similar problems, I wish you good luck on your facial skin journey! If there is one other thing that I would like to share with you that I think helped me a lot in improving the texture of my face, it is to drink lots of water everyday and never, ever again prick your face. Gold morning! (^_^)