Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Skin-n-Teeth on the cheap


Hope you're all well and are enjoying our first day of summer!!! A lot of you have been asking me about my favorite skin-care, hair-care and cosmetic products. Given that I am obsessed with everything beauty-related, I kinda have a lot of favorites, however, the products that I treasure most are the ones that are also good on my wallet. So, to answer all your questions, I decided to do a post or a series of posts highlighting these products and focusing only on the ones we can all afford. Voila!

Today's post features my fave skin-care on the cheap plus some affordable teeth whitening options :) Here's a sneak peak:

Read more for products, pix and raves :D

Favorite Affordable Skin Care: Queen Helene

Queen Helene specializes in skin care as well as ethnic hair & bath products all made from natural ingredients. 
  1. The Mint Julep Masque ($4-6 depending on the store) dries up pimples, gets rid of impurities and improves skin's texture and radiance. Personally, I can't live without this product. It is my ultimate remedy for speeding up acne scar healing time and rejuvenating dull looking skin. I use this mask once a week or the day I need to look my best--and I'm telling you--my skin is always noticeably better after it. This product is essential for traveling and will restore your tired, lackluster skin in just 1 use. The mask is sulphur based, so it also helps prevent new acne from forming. I would say that this is my #1 favorite skin treatment that I absolutely swear by.  
  2. As much as I love my Mint Julep masque, I am equally obsessed with the Mint Julep Facial Scrub ($3-5 depending on the store). The scrub isn't as potent as the mask, so it's great for every day use and essentially provides the same results, just not as instantaneously. I'm pretty sensitive to most scrubs, but the micro-scrubbers in this product don't irritate my skin at all. Perhaps, it is because they're made from all natural walnut shell and not some synthetic concoction. 
Where to Buy: This brand can sometimes be tricky to find. In NYC, I've seen it at Walgreens, but not at Duane Reade. Ulta carries it for a fact and so do most beauty supply stores in urban neighborhoods. Amazon sells Queen Helene even cheaper than the stores. Check out my links :)

Looking awesomely green in my Mint Julep Masque

Favorite Affordable Cleansers: Neutrogena

We all know and love Neutrogena for their great acne treatments, moisturizers, sun-protection products and cosmetics. I love Neutrogena for their awesome cleansers and makeup removers.
  1. Deep Clean oil-free makeup remover cleansing wipes: ($8) great for those late nights... hehe. I can't tell you how many times I've wanted to fall asleep in my makeup... Thankfully, with this product, there's no excuse. Just wipe and throw away! 
  2. Fresh cleansing + makeup remover: does the job without the chemicals, so you could sleep easy :) Not the cheapest of my cheap finds (about $7-10 depending on the store) but a little goes a long way! You only need a tiny amount of this product to get the lather going :)
  3. Eye makeup remover lotion: ($7) BY FAR THE BEST eye makeup remover ever!!! I've tried everything and have been dissatisfied for so long. Every single one I tried has irritated my eyes, making them watery, red and itchy. This one's a winner and it makes makeup removing so much fun, see... :)
Where to Buy: any drugstore, supermarket or discount retailer.

BONUS: White teeth on the cheap

Crest 3D White is a brand within a brand specializing in advanced whitening at home. 
Plus White claims to be the celebrity brand among teeth whiteners.
Bottom Line: Don't know about the brands, but the products I use are both great and do what they purport to do.
  1. Crest 3D White Vivid Toothpaste: ($4-7) rated the best out of all the whitening toothpastes. Results are dramatic and can be seen in just a few days. I use this toothpaste once a day at night (my regular Arm & Hammer baking soda toothpaste in the am) for two weeks, then go back to my regular toothpaste until I feel like I need to whiten again. P. S. All my European friends stock up on this toothpaste when in the States :)
  2. Plus White 5 Minute Speed Whitening Gel for Sensitive Teeth: ($6-10) see noticeable results after 5 minutes--really. This product isn't recommended for daily usage, and I only use it on days when I need to look my best (in conjunction with my Mint Julep Masque hehe...) Once a month or so :))
  3. Mouth Trays can be purchased at any sports goods store... This is the same stuff that protects boxers, ballers, etc. P. S. You'll be amused with the face that the Modell's employee makes after you ask him/her to help you find the mouth trays... :D
Whenever I travel overseas, people often tell me that my white teeth give away that I'm American... I'm not bragging, but it's true. Americans have really white teeth because we have advanced, affordable and attainable teeth whitening products. Hey, I'm not ashamed to whiten my pearlies!!! :D


Maryam Maquillage


  1. Only you can make a face mask look FIERCE! I really wanna try that Neutrogena Naturals face wash! Love that last pic, your smile always brightens up my day! :)

  2. I love Queen Helene's face mask. <3 I've been using it for years and I love it!

    SERIOUSLY YOUR frickin amazing i love all these products too!!! I really love sulphur based face washes and masks they really help my skin!!!
    & lol i didn't know that us americans are known for our white teeth too funny

  4. beautiful photos of your smile! I am so going to look for the Queen Helene line now.. I LOVE Neutrogena too!

  5. Fab post i need to find some of these great products in the UK! x

  6. So treu, Americains have the whitest teeth of all! Always a give away.

  7. You have a lovely smile hun! :) So jealous!!

  8. Oh thanks for the tips! I love the Mint Julep Mask as well <3

  9. I have the mint julep mask & the 5 minute whitening gel... yay!! hahaha... it does show that the whitening gel works really good, you have such a great smile!!

  10. Awesome post!!! I had to get my aunties to send me the 5 Minute Whitening Gel from the US, but at least it works! ^.^

  11. thanks lovely ladies!!! please don't be shy to share your own cheap favorites :)))

  12. I find that the Nuetrogena products breaks me out. I remember one time I purchased the Neutrogena face products for face wash and exfoliators it broke me out so bad that I had to go back to my Simple products (UK Skincare for Sensitive skin) I am now using only SIMPLE face wash and St Ylves Exfoliators and it works a wonder!
    You have such a nice skin though! they look like babies bottoms! well just the softness not the bum! haha :)

  13. oh my cheap favourites would have to be SIMPLE face wash and OLAY'S complete care moisturisers thats all I ever use! lol

  14. I want those product for teeth! but I'm afraid I can't find those brands in my country =(

  15. I want your white teeth!
    I love cheap favorites too, cheap but good!

  16. ahhhhh I need this!!!! you NEED to make a youtube channel and I'll definitely subscribe!!

  17. @Kirsty: I should've mentioned I hate Neutrogena's exfoliators... I did have an Olay exfoliator that was great, but for some reason it's discontinued :((
    @Amazon will ship overseas!!!
    @Cominica-ai: thanks hon, my teeth are white bc I use this stuff haha
    @Louise: YES!!! It's in the works, I just need to get that flip and perfect my editing skills!!!

  18. I never tried any of them! though i use alot of neutrogena stuff!! i wanna give these a go :)

  19. hey girlie,

    how quickly does that 5 minute speed gel really work? like, can you see visible results after 5 minutes?



  20. Lovely blog.


  21. omg you've helped me tremendously! i've been on the hunt for some good//affordable whitening stuff, especially since i've got my braces off hehe, now i know what i'm buying with my next paycheck hehe!

    [yazmiinaktar.blogspot.com] xx
    [yazmiinaktar.blogspot.com] xx

  22. Right, Maryam! You shouldn't be ashamed to show off your pearly whites! However, if one already found something to rely on, it's still important that he or she visits the dentist regularly. There could be other dental problems that even recommended products can't solve.

  23. I completely agree with you Sal, we can never rely on teeth whitening and other aesthetic products to maintain good dental health and hygiene. Products like this are always secondary and should only be used once all dental problems are cleared by a dentist :))

  24. Oh gosh Maryam, you are so beautiful you manage to make wearing a face mask look good hahaha.. envy envy!! I love Queen Helene products too! The mint Julep mask has such a nice minty smell to it! <3 And you have a great smile!!

  25. yeah its realy Nice i have a lovely smile hun! :) So jealous!Dentist Woodstock Ontario

  26. I wanted to thank you for this great read. I definitely enjoying every little bit of it I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you post.


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