This Little Miggy Stayed Home: Lotions and Potions

Monday, June 18, 2012

Lotions and Potions

You've been using a lot of new lotions and potions lately, B said to me last week.

Cue me giving him the look.  And cue him wishing he had never brought it up.  

In some ways he's right.  I don't know what it is about preparing for a trip, but I always want to look my best.  Especially when that trip involves the beach and family photos.  But in some ways (most ways) he was wrong...very little of this was new.  While a lot of the products were new, I've been using a version of each product for years, most dating back to high school.  I think he felt a little relief.  His wife wasn't turning into some seeker-of-the-fountain-of-youth-crazed wannabe overnight.

Or not yet.  Or I already am.  Either way he was wrong!

But since he brought it up (and since I won't drop it), I thought I'd share with you some of my new-ish lotions and potions and how they've worked for me so far.  Let's start at the top and go clockwise shalle we?

1. Aztec Secret - Indian Healing Clay:  Oooooh... mysterious.  Since my tried and true Burt's Bee's mud mask is extinct, I started looking online for a good substitute.  I definitely wanted a mud mask--something to pull oil out of the pores.  I stumbled upon this Indian healing clay and was a little turned off by the name, cheesy label, hyperbolic claims, etc.  But when I saw the massive amounts of positive reviews on Amazon and MakeupAlly I decided to give it a try.  It works.  It's a good mask, very inexpensive and not drying either.  It's a powder that you mix with water or apple cider vinegar--which makes the mask particularly smelly.  Turns out this healing clay is 100% calcium bentonite clay which you can buy in other brands.  In fact, here's a website you can read all about this clay and the various ways to use it including eating it!  If you're into ridding yourself of toxins you might want to check it out here.  I'm sorta interested to see what 3 weeks of eating clay would do for me, but I digress...  If you're looking for a good, basic mud mask give it a try.

2. Lorac Gradual Self TANtilizer:  I have tried many a tanning cream over the years and have never really been successful.  A boyfriend once called me out and told me to stop using that stuff because it looked horrible.  He was right.  So I started real tanning.  Great idea!  In the past few years I've started giving tanning lotions a try again--especially the gradual bronzers.  But all of them were grocery store brands and still a little blotchy, orange-y, etc.  After some more digging I came across Lorac's TANtilizer body bronzer and gradual self tanner.  So far this stuff is an A+.  A couple nice things, 1)  It comes with a mitt to rub it on...this helps a lot in getting an even application.  2)  It's a bronzer and gradual tanning cream.  So it actually gives you color the second you rub it on, and then proceeds to give you gradual color over time.  3)  It doesn't smell like self tanning cream.  At a little over $30 a pop it's not cheap, but when thinking about the cost of a tanning bed, the health risks and the time commitment...this stuff is a steal.  Plus if you buy it at Sephora you can always return items you don't like, even if you've used them.  Tip:  To avoid dark knees, elbows and ankles rub a little regular lotion on those areas first before applying self tanner.

3.  Amlactin Foot Cream:  So I basically have leather for feet.  And you know how worn, dry, cracked leather can look so good on a vintage couch or satchel?  Well it looks gross on feet.  I've used all sorts of (I'm-not-ever-gonna-let-my-husband-forget-that-he-said-this-phrase) lotions and potions on my feet, but I haven't really found anything super awes.  One day I was browsing through a favorite publication of mine when I saw this interview with a NYC podiatrist.  He suggested Amlactin foot cream for super, dry cracked feet.  He said that even though it's over-the-counter it's a miracle worker.  Friends...he was telling the truth.  Here's the key, you need to use it daily for it to work--2 times a day is ideal especially at the beginning.  It's didn't take that long to transform my scaly, dry feet into smooth, crack-free, foot-modely feet.  I have not yet found this in any drugstore/Target/Walmar/Grocery store.  I have found other Amlactin products, but I have heard that you need this specific one to do the buy it here on Amazon.  ps.  27 out of 28 amazon ratings were 5 stars!  See?  Legit.    

4.  Apple Cider Vinegar Toner:  This is an inexpensive, effective and natural toner.  I first heard about it here.  And since I happen to have a giant bottle of ACV I thought, shoot...why not.  Simply mix  1 part ACV and 3-4 parts water.  The upside:  Cheap!  Natural!  The downside:  Smelly!  Most people claim the smell goes away after it's dry...but I dunno, I think it lingers a little.  Frankly the smell doesn't bother me as much as it does the Mr.  He's getting used to it.  Bragg's is pretty much the gold standard when it comes to ACV and while I included a link up top, you can buy it in any health food store.  Another bonus of buying the ACV is that you use it to mix in the healing clay--yay!  Two birds man, two birds...

4.  Extra Virgin Coconut Oil:  This is another 2 birds with 1 stone product.  You can use it to make these killer chocolate macaroons AND you can use it in your hair to make it silky, shiny and soft.  I think I heard about this the first time on C. Jane's blog, so credit, where credit's due.  For your hair just apply it to the ends or all over--leave in for at least 20 minutes (longer for more conditioning!) and then wash out.  Unlike the other natural products I love the way this stuff smells!  And while it's not exactly my Bumble and Bumble treatment mask, this stuff works well.  

5.  Homemade Sugar Scrub:  Did you ever go into a Bath and Body works store and use their scrubs at the instore sinks?  Yeah and then did you and all your friends talk about how soft and smooth your hands felt?  Yeah?  And secretly inside your brian you were thinking, "Um of course this feels soft and smooth...I've got a layer of oil on my hands."  Don't get me wrong, I think the exfoloiting process is helpful, but it just never seemed like rocket science to me.  Sugary scrubby stuff + oily something or other = soft feeling skin.  So I'm happy to see a slew of easy-peasy recipes on line.  When it comes to scrubs I prefer this very simple recipe I found on Pinterest.  White sugar + Brown sugar  + olive oil + vanilla and a little vitamin E oil if you have some to keep mold away.  Original link here.  I pinned it here.

5 1/2.  On a final note, and along the lines of beauty regimes, I can officially now attest that when having your *ahem* nether regions waxed it makes a HUGE difference when it comes down to your technician's experience and technique.  Night and day.  If you do your homework and find a place with good reviews, it's not that big of a deal.  Promise.

OK so lets have it...what are your favorite lotions and potions out there?  Anything I'm missing?  
Shoot, I've always got room for more potions.  


  1. I pretty much live and die by my Lush products. I use the sea salt scrub for my face, a must for getting rid of old skin etc, and the Dream Cream lotion on my big pregnant belly but it has worked wonders on lightening my stretch marks even as I grow so i'm going to keep it up after baby. Also the Dream Cream is awesome for sun burned skin. I use lots of other stuff but none as religiously as those two products. Still trying to find a face moisturizer that I love.....

  2. Anonymous10:42 AM

    Philosophy's "Supernatural" tinted spf cream. It makes even my mother look like a movie star! :> Seriously, if you try it, you will never ever not use it again. :>

  3. Anonymous2:31 PM

    Love Josie Maran's Daily Face Moisturizer (SPF 40). I live in SoCal and need serious sun protection. Plus, it smells divine! I put it on my kids, too.

  4. Oooh thanks for the recs! Speaking of recs, I was trying to go back and find our music post(s) because I need to update some spotify playlists. (Are you on spotify btw?) Anyhoo - any chance you might add a search feature to the blog? (Or is it already there and I'm missing it?) Thanks mama!

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  6. I use pretty much as little as possible, mostly cause I'm lazy. (My life has a recurring theme.)

    However, a friend's blog suggested using baking soda instead of face wash, and I've been doing that for about 2 months now. LOVE it. I guess it qualifies as LESS lotions and potions, but either way, it works great.

  7. Thanks for the recommendations. I totally ordered the foot cream! I'm looking very very forward to having non-leathery feet soon! Have fun on your big trip.

  8. So, when getting your *ahem* waxed, there is a cream out there you can apply 15 min before hand that is for this specific purpose. It minimizes 95% of the pain. I went from screaming, to thinking, 'that wasn't so bad'.

  9. Whoops, I entered the last comment under my husbands acount, which would make him want to die when he see's what I wrote under his name!


    Ha - its called Relax and Wax No Scream Cream - great name!

  11. i'm obviously way behind in my blog reading. i recently started using coconut oil for eye makeup remover. i love love love it.

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