Thinker thinner for better skin, skin care ingredients I believe in for a basic routine

Prevention Prevention Prevention

We need a good sunscreen all year around. Ingredients to look for in sunscreens (especially for sensitive and dry skin):

  • Zinc oxide: physically blocks the sun’s rays to protect skin surface.
  • Titanium dioxide: a physical blocker – sitting on skin surface and reflecting the sun’s rays.


  1. Blue Lizard (Sensitive and Baby formulas)
  2. Marie Veronique Organics Moisturizing Face Screen, SPF 30
  3. Colorescience Mineral Powder Sun Protection SPF 30
  4. EltaMD UV Pure Broad-Spectrum SPF 47
  5. SkinMedica Daily Physical Defense SPF 30+ 

Check EWG’s website for more recommendations.

Antioxidants fight free-radicals for your health

Antioxidants block free radicals, which are believed to break down collagen and elastin and leave you more susceptible to skin cancer. There are a lot of choices in the market, such as:

  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin E
  • Green tea, coffeeberry
  • Resveratrol
  • Turmeric 


  1. Paula’s Choice RESIST Super Antioxidant Concentrate Serum
  2. Juice Beauty Antioxidant Serum
  3. Kinerase Pro + Therapy C8 Peptide Intensive Treatment with Kinetin and Zeatin
  4. 100% Pure  Red Wine Resveratrol Antioxidant Serum
  5. SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic

The way to look younger. Don’t get behind!

  • Alpha-hydroxy acid: Acids (including glycolic and lactic acid) that remove the top layer of dead skin cells and are believed to reduce fine lines and even out skin tone. AHAs encourage new cells to rise to the surface, giving the skin a fresher, healthier, more vibrant look. Also, through routine application, they can reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
  • Vitamin A derivatives: such as tretinoin and retinol. Three topical retinoids are available in the United States: tretinoin, adapalene, and tazarotene. Topical isotretinoin is available in Canada and Europe, but it is not approved for use in the United States.

Both retinol and alpha hydroxy acids can make your skin more susceptible to damage from the sun’s UVA and UVB rays. So, you should use a sunscreen during the day.antiaging

  1. Alpha Hydrox Intensive Serum 14% Glycolic AHA 
  2. Exuviance Evening Restorative Complex
  3. REN Resurfacing AHA Concentrate
  4. SkinMedica 15% AHA/BHA
  5. Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Alpha Beta Peel
  1. Neutrogena Ageless Intensives Deep Wrinkle Anti-Wrinkle Serum
  2. Thomas Roth’s Retinol Fusion PM
  3. SkinMedica Tri-Retinol Complex
  4. Replenix Retinol Plus Smoothing Serum 5X
  5. StriVectin-AR Advanced Retinol Night Treatment

Aggressive use of skin-type appropriate moisturizers will only make your skin look healthier

A good basic moisterizer is a must have for both your face and body. Proper hydration of the skin is crucial to prevent wrinkle from dryness. Ingredients such as:

  • Glycerin
  • Petrolatum
  • Fatty acids such as stearic acid, and ceramides
  • Niacin: it helps protect skin against the redness and inflammation that often come with retinol use


  1. CeraVe Moisturizing Lotion
  2. Aveeno Positively Ageless Restructuring Treatment Cream
  3. Olay Regenerist Night Recovery Cream
  4. First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream
  5. NIA 24 Intensive Recovery Complex

Buy skincare products like a dermatologist

I know the research that I have done on the dermatologist’s medicine cabinet is pretty overwhelming (if you are interested in reading the original posts, click HERE ). I made a quick diagram t to give you a couple of products to choose from in each category. Of course this doesn’t include all the products that I found, but hopefully will make your life easier if you are new to skin care =)

skin care alternatives2

1.  From top to bottom

2.  From top to bottom

3.  From top to bottom

4.  From top to bottom

Quick comparison of Pump it Up workout series, which version to choose?

“Pump it Up Workout” is a series of aerobic exercises that aims to provide a fast, effective and enjoyable way of getting fit and burning  fat. I really like this workout series because they always include the warm-up and stretch sections, and they are mostly very fun. You can find all kinds of reviews on each specific episode. I am sharing a quick comparison between different episodes.

I don’t think there is one episode that works best in term of fat losing. As long as you keep moving, I think all kinds of cardio workout can help you shred unwanted fat eventually. Although I think control your diet is even more important. I need to do a better job in portion control. I can’t stop eating once I start to snake on something, too bad. That’s why I don’t really see too much result even if I am working out hard…


My personal favorites are 04, 09 and 11.

For those of you who just start the workout, I would suggest 04, 05 and 11.

For those of you who want something of higher energy, I would suggest 04, 05 and 09.

For those of you who love dancing, I would suggest 08, 11, 12.

piu comparisonI wasn’t able to find all the videos on Youtube and the videos are always cut into several parts. I found all the videos on a Chinese video website and would like to share with you. The qualities are not always good, but at least they are free and not in millions of sections =)

PIU 2004  PIU 2005  PIU 2006  PIU 2007  PIU 2008  PIU 2009  PIU 2010  PIU 2011  PIU 2012

Enjoy the workout! Pump it Up!

My SkincareRx package is here! Which Elta Md sunscreen to choose?

My package arrived this afternoon! I will start to use the TNS serum and the sunscreen when I finish my current Skinceuticals CEF serum and Chanel sunscreen.

IMG_6485 copy

I haven’t used any Elta sunscreens before and found it extremely difficult to pick from so many similar products… I spent a lot of time reading reviews and would like to share some of my findings with you:

1. UV clear SPF 46, 1.7oz

Active ingredients: 9.0% Zinc Oxide 7.5% Octinoxate

This is the EllE award winning one. It says it’s for acne-prone skin on the package. I have seen a lot of good reviews about this one. It seems like this doesn’t leave you the white cast like a lot of other sunscreen products do. And it has some oil-control effects.

I picked up this one because this actually seems to be the only one that contains Niacin among all the Elta sunscreens, although originally I thought they all had Niacin in them. Niacin is also known as VB3. It is a moisturizing and calming ingredient for your skin. It also prevents melanin from reaching the skin and reduces the production of the staining compounds. Olay use Niacin in their spot treatment line. Some study also shows that Niacin can help prevent skin cancer. Although it is used a lot for sensitive skin, some people might have reactions from using it. I have experienced some red bumps from using CeraVe cream before, so has my husband. And it has niacin in it. I am not sure if it is from Niacin. I want to give this ingredient another try again. (That’s why I bought the night cream together this time…)

2. UV daily SPF 40, 1.7oz

Active ingredients: 9.0% Zinc Oxide   7.5% Octinoxate

This one says it’s for normal skin. Some people say it is heavier than the SPF46 one. It sounds like a better choice for autumn and winter. But I have also seen people saying this actually dries out their skin even more than the first one… The texture is definitely creamier, so I didn’t buy this one given summer is coming.

3. UV shield SPF 45, 3oz

Active ingredients: 9.0% Zinc Oxide   7.5% Octinoxate

A lot of reviews that I read about this product looked identical with the SPF 46 one. Like I said, I picked the SPF46 over this one because the SPF46 contains Niacin. But if you are positive that you are allergic to Niacin, maybe try this one instead.

4. UV physical SPF 41, 3oz

Active ingredients: 9.0% Zinc Oxide  7.0%  Titanium

This should be a good one judging from the ingredients. This is a pure physical sunscreen. Zinc Oxide and Titanium are the only two physical ingredients in sunscreen products. I do favor pure physical sunscreens over a mix of physical and chemical sunscreens. But I have read both good and bad reviews about it. Some say this is very thick and they break out from using it. I have acne-prone skin and I don’t want to risk this time. Maybe I will give it try next time. Another reason I didn’t pick this one this time is because it also has a tinted version. I kind of want to try and see what the tinted version might look like on my skin before I buy it.

5. UV sport SPF 50, 3oz

Active ingredients: 9.0% Zinc Oxide7.5% Octinoxate5.0% Octisalate 

I don’t know if the other sunscreens from Elta are water-proof or not. I simply picked this one because this does say it is water-proof. I need a water-proof sunscreen for the hot summer in Southern California. Plus this one has 3oz. I can also use it all over my body.

I also found this image online, very helpful!


I will post my own reviews on the SPF 46 and SPF 50 once I have started using them. Let me know your experience with Elta sunscreens as well =)

Mini Marshalls Hall

The weather is Southern California is warming up quickly. I wanted to get new fitness pants for the summer so I decided to stop by at Marshalls. There weren’t as many pretty outfits as I thought, but I still picked up some cheap stuff. Since I am not working now, I have to keep an eye on my budget more carefully =(

clothes haul2I picked up two loose fit tops. The first is a black and white houndstooth top. I love the transformation from houndstooth to butterfly! It reminds me of the graphic design class that I took in college… And I think it can be very chic to wear under a blazer and very casual to wear with jeans or shorts.

The second top I picked up is a coral top with collar details. I love the folds in the front as well. I just love the color and think the collar detail makes it a great layering piece as well.

I also picked up a white tank top. I love the lace back. The quality looks good as well. Lace is really in trend right now. But they can look cheap sometimes if the quality is not so good. I think this is a nice piece to wear under those see-through tops as well.

The last piece that I picked up is a cropped purple fitness pants. I usually just wear leggings when I do insanity workout but feel like to get something thinner since it is getting hot here. I am not a very big fan of shorts and sports bra. I always do some stretch on mat after working out. I hate to touch the mat with bare skin when I am too sweated…

Summer is coming, I can’t wait to wear them out!

Bergdorf Goodman Beauty Event it here!

Bergdorf Goodman Online Beauty Event has started today! Beauty Event code BEAUTY ($200 off $1000 and $75 off $500) and Free Shipping on $125+ with code FSBEAUTY. I have placed two orders for my sister and her friend in China. =)

bg beauty event


Bergdorf Goodman usually has two beauty events every year in April and October, respectively. It offers discount with purchase and most beauty brands have gifts with purchases. You can pre-order by contacting sale assistants to reserve your orders and gifts. But I usually place orders online just because I don’t have a familiar BA or SA.

Check all beauty brands here:


La Mer:


La Prairie:





Estee Lauder:

Amore Pacific:


Bobbi Brown