Let’s Talk Vitamin C

Most of you reading this probably already have a skincare routine down pact. Since my outbreak of horrible, cystic acne back in college, which has led to hyper pigmentation and scarring, I’ve invested more in skincare products than anyone I know my age. Everything from SPF, night creams, eye creams, serums, masks – I thought I had it down to a science. What I didn’t realize was that I was missing a very key ingredient that was instrumental in my healing process: Vitamin C.

Vitamin C, which is abundant in vegetables and fruits, is a water soluble vitamin and a power anti-oxidant. It helps the body form and maintain connective tissue, including bones, blood vessels and skin. Vitamin C is easy to get through foods such as apples, asparagus, berries, broccoli, melon, citrus fruits and dark leafy greens. What I wasn’t aware of was that Vitamin C is actually AMAZING for your skin and had been something I neglected in my skincare routines to date. Here are the top 10 benefits of VC:

  1. Reduces Inflammation
  2. Improves Hydration & Moisture
  3. Reduces Under Eye Circles – (hello!)
  4. Promotes Collagen Production
  5. Speeds Up Healing
  6. Protects Skin from Sun Damage
  7. Speeds Up Healing of Sun Burns
  8. Reduces Inflammation
  9. Keeps Skin Looking Younger
  10. Reduces Skin Discoloration

It’s been a few weeks now since I’ve introduced Vitamin C rich products into my skincare routine. So far, I’m loving how my skin feels. It looks brighter and more radiant than ever. Here are some of my favorites:

Please note, this is not an ad, as always, just genuine products I use and love. Enjoy!






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HydraFacial MD: Is it really worth the hype?

It’s January in NYC and my skin’s been really dry lately. I knew it was time for a facial but was hesitant to get my typical microdermabrasion because of how sensitive my skin is at this time of year. I had been hearing a lot about the HydraFacial, which is supposed to remove debris from pores with painless suction and saturate the skin’s surface with antioxidants. It’s been taking the Internet by storm and celebs have been raving about it.. so naturally, I had to try it.

I went to Green Zen Organic Spa (40 West 38th Street, NYC) to get mine done and cannot rave more about this spa. My aesthetician’s name is Stella and she was great! Here’s the breakdown of what you can expect:

Step 1: Cleansing & Exfoliation – My facial began with a soothing coconut milk cleanse to remove impurities. Immediately following, Stella used a gentle strawberry scented lactic acid peel to soften and condition my skin.

Step 2: Exfoliation & Extractions – Now that she had a clean canvas to work with, she used a HydroPeel tip, which felt really similar to the one used for a microdermabrasion and ran 2 passes along my face and neck. I’m normally a wimp when it comes to manual extractions (yikes!), so loved how painless and gentle this was. Imagine a dime-sized small vacuum being passed all over your face to lift away dirt, blackheads and dead skin.

Step 3: VORTEX-FUSION – Sounds so intense, right? Basically, in this step, Stella applied a variety of serums to replenish my skin’s natural elasticity and enhance hydration. The combination consisted of Hyaluronic Acid, Vitamins A, E, White Tea extract, Horse Chestnut extract and Rosemary extract. After my skin was infused with these serums, she left me under a red LED light for about 10 minutes to stimulate collagen production.

Final thoughts? $150 dollars and 24 hours later — I’m thrilled with the results. My skin feels clean, smooth, hydrated and healthy. I definitely recommend trying it out for yourself but be sure to consult with your aesthetician beforehand to make sure it’s right for your skin. If you happen to go to Green Zen Organic Spa, make sure to see Stella and let me know your thoughts!



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Earlier this year, I booked a routine facial at Anthony DeFranco Salon & Spa, while on a weekend trip to Long Island. Admittedly, I didn’t do too much research on the facility, but it had great reviews, so I booked the appointment and went in with an open mind.

The aesthetician Evelyn, was really sweet and took the time to understand my skin concerns. Evelyn recommended a microdermabrasion and explained each product used and their benefits. The products used were by a company called PCA Skin, who she had been using for years.

After my facial, she was kind enough to gift me with samples of their Hydrator Plus Broad Spectrum SPF and Nutrient Rich Toner. I was so glad she did, because both products have become a part of my daily skincare routine since, and I’ve already repurchased twice!

PCA Skin was founded in 1990 by an aesthetician and developed by a dermatologist. The product line caters to all skin types and addresses a variety of skin concerns. The Nutrient Rich Toner is by far my favorite product and doesn’t irritate the skin after removing my makeup. Disclaimer: THIS. STUFF. SMELLS. AMAZING. Pumpkin-wine? I mean.. come on.

It’s no surprise that I was thrilled to be a part of PCA Skin’s Winter Hydration Campaign, bringing you 5 essentials to keep your skin hydrated and glowing all winter long! I’ll be giving away 3 kits of sample sizes to get you started.

Details for the giveaway can be found on my Instagram and below:

  • Must be following @pcaskin and I (@shaikhemlani) on Instagram
  • Must Like this photo on Instagram
  • Tag 2 friends in the comments

A direct link to my Instagram can be found at the bottom of this page. The winner will be selected on Thursday night (11/16) – good luck!



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