Tuesday, November 25, 2014

InstaNatural Skincare and Haircare Review

I'm pretty loyal to Korean skincare brands, although there are times when I'd like to venture out and try some new things. I do talk a lot of smack about western skincare, but there are a lot of fantastic brands doing great things- I just plug my eyes and close my eyes and pretend they don't exist. You've gotta admit, quality western skincare can sometimes cost a fortune, and I can't get down with that!
Occasionally though, I'll come across a brand or a product in particular that is focused on natural ingredients and quality performance, and I'm intrigued. When I got the opportunity to try some products from InstaNatural, I thought it would be a great chance to see how they held up to my favorite Korean brands in regards to quality and results.

This mask is 100% Natural, cruelty free, and made in the USA.  It is made with Pure Dead Sea mud, which has been known for years in the beauty world as a powerhouse ingredient that detoxifies the skin, helps with acne and enlarged pores, and has anti-aging benefits.

It comes in a gigantic 16oz jar, which is a very generous size, although I cannot imagine EVER using all of this. It's suggested that this mask is to be used once per week. At that rate, I should be finished with this jar in 3-4 years! Interestingly, the company says this mask can also be used on the body to soothe irritated skin, so I suppose that would be a good way to use this up a bit more quickly!

This Dead Sea Mud Mask captures the minerals of the Dead Sea waters, along with other nourishing organic ingredients, to provide the ultimate detoxifier & purifier that delivers exceptional results:

- Removes excess dirt, oil, grime & dead skin
- Improves acne and blemishes
- Reduces appearance of wrinkles & fine lines
- Soothes body aches
- Hydrates skin for softness
- Restores even skin tone and texture
- Helps achieve more vibrant, refined skin
Pure Dead Sea Mud, Organic Shea Butter, Organic Sunflower Oil, Organic Aloe Vera Juice, Organic Vegetable Glycerin, Organic Jojoba Oil, Hickory Bark Extract, Organic Calendula Oil, Filtered Water, Xanthan Gum
My Thoughts
This mask is used like any other- applied to clean skin and left for 10-15 minutes to dry, then rinsed off with warm water. The directions state not to use this mask more than once per week, and I can definitely see why.
While my experience with this mask was a good one, I do think people with dry skin need to be very careful when using this product. I have combination skin, so clay and mud masks can be beneficial for me, although will dry my skin out if I over-use them. I have used this mask 2 times now, and I can confidently say that this will really dry up that excess oil! If you have oily skin, this mask would be amazing for you!
I didn't feel any tingling or irritation while using the product, although it has a cooling feel to it once applied. Once this mask was dry, my skin felt very tight and continued to feel that way once the mask was removed. After using this product, I continued on with my regular nighttime skincare routine, and my skin did not feel any drier or more irritated than before.
Immediately after washing the mask off and drying my face, I could feel and see my skin was more firm. The pores on my nose were less noticeable, and the surface of my skin felt soft and clean. I do think that if I hadn't continued on with my product routine, my skin probably would have felt super dry. If you don't have oily skin, it's important to replenish healthy moisture to your skin after using this product.
Overall, I've only used it twice, so I haven't seen any miraculous results, although I love the way it makes my skin feel. It's a really relaxing and spa-like product that is perfect for pampering yourself at the end of a long week. I might avoid it if you have dry skin, but it would be amazing for body and spot treatments!

This is a vegan Hyaluronic Acid serum, and it's packed with awesome skin-loving ingredients including vitamin C,  and jojoba oil. There are no parabens, fragrances, additives or alcohol. it delivers immediate moisture and nourishment, leaaving the skin feelings soft and looking more vibrant. Hyaluronic acid is known to be a very potent natural moisturizer, without leaving behind a greasy or oily residue like a regular lotion or cream. The bottle holds 2oz, which is quite a large size for a serum!

This Serum Has many skincare benefits, including:
- Diminishes appearance of wrinkles and fine lines
- Reduces hyper-pigmentation (sun spots, age spots, discoloration)
- Helps make the skin soft, supple, firm
- Hydrates dry, rough skin
- Reduces puffiness and appearance of dark circles
- Achieves an overall vibrant, healthy complexion

Deionized water, organic aloe, witch hazel, hyaluronic acid, kosher vegetable glycerin, MSM (methyisulfonylmethane), hydroxyethyl, cellulose, carrageenan gum, organic jojoba oil, wildcrafted green tea, geranium essential oil, vitamin c (sodium ascorbyl phosphate) vitamin e (tocopheryl acetate), sodium benzoate, potassium sorbate, ethyl hexyl glycerin
My Thoughts
 I used this serum in the morning and evening after using my toner. InstaNatural suggests using it this often for the best results, but it can be used as after as you need it. The formula is very lightweight. It feels a bit like a gel, rather than a serum. As soon as it hits the skin and is massaged in, it becomes more of a watery consistency. This absorbs incredibly quickly, and you can immediately feel the different in the texture of your skin. A good way to test this is to apply a generous amount to the top of one hand and leave the other one without. Wait a few minutes and then gently feel the skin each hand. You'll be amazed at how much softer the skin is after using this serum.
This product can also be worn under makeup without changing the consistency of foundation, or pilling, which I appreciate! So many of my serums tend to pill and roll up when I apply a foundation over them. After just a few days of use, I am continuously happy with this serum. My skin feels absolutely baby-soft. I've been using it on my hands as well as my face and I've also seen a huge difference there as well. I had some discoloration on my hands that has already started to fade! I wouldn't believe it if I didn't see it with my own eyes. Of course after only a few days, I haven't noticed any anti-aging benefits yet. I've been using this product along with my Foxbrim eye cream, so I'm not entirely sure if the lessening of my dark circles and puffiness around my eyes is due to the eye cream, or this serum, however I will report back if I figure it out! 
So far, I'm very pleased with this serum. I haven't had any adverse effects, no breakouts or irritation, and my skin feels softer than ever.

This is hair mask contains argan oil, amino acid complex, coconut oil shea butter, vitamin b5, jojoba oil, and avocado oil, which work together to moisturize and rejuvenate the hair. It's main use is as a deep conditioning treatment, as it permeates the follicles and delivers nutrients and hydration. It restores health to damaged hair to enhance a soft texture and provide luminous shine. It also protects hair by repairing existing damage and making it stronger so that it can withstand heat styling.
This is a gigantic 8oz tub of product, so if this is only used sporadically as a mask, it will last you a practical lifetime. However, it is also suggested that rather than keeping it on for 15 minutes, it can also be used as a regular hair conditioner.
Key Ingredients:
Organic Argan Oil, Japanese Green Tea Leaf Extract, Silk Protein Amino Acid Blend, Organic Jojoba Seed Oil, Organic Sesame Seed Oil, Organic Avocado Oil, Organic Olive Fruit Oil, Organic Evening Primrose Oil, Organic Linseed Seed Oil, Organic Coconut Oil, Organic Shea Butter, Organic Starflower Seed Oil, Panthenol (Pro-Vitamin B5), Palm Oil.
My Thoughts
This product, as I mentioned above, can be used not only as a hair mask, but as a daily conditioner. It has an amazing vanilla-orange (creamsicle) scent that I really enjoyed.
When I first used this product, I used it as a simple conditioner, which only requires 1-2 minutes of wait time before rinsing. Unfortunately, I found that after rinsing and towel-drying my hair, it was tangled and even a bit greasy-feeling, which I was not fond of at all. Once I brushed out my hair and it was fully dry, I did notice my hair has a nice shine to it and felt softer, but I wasn't willing to go through the tangled, greasy mess in order to get those results.
I decided to use it as intended a few days later: as a hair mask. I applied it to towel-dried hair and ran my fingers through to make sure it was covering all the strands. I left it on for about 15 minutes before rinsing it out very well this time, as I was trying to avoid that greasy-feel. 
Yet again, my hair was tangled and difficult to brush out. I rinsed very well this time, so I do feel like the greasiness subsided quite a bit. I had the same sort of results using it as a mask, although I do feel like my hair was significantly softer and more manageable once fully dry.

Here's what I think is going on here: I have very thin, color treated hair. It doesn't take much to make my hair greasy. I think this product is best used for thick, long, damaged hair, or some combination of those. While my hair is very thin, it's not very dry or damaged.
"Hair Treatment" doesn't always mean "very good conditioner" as many of us like to think. So I decided to give this product one more try, except with my roommates hair. He has thick, damaged hair. I also explained to him that we were going to use it a bit differently.
I decided to have him wash his hair, put in the treatment and wait 15 minutes, then rinse. Then instead of that being it, I had him re-shampoo his hair, and then use a little bit of his regular conditioner and rinse as normal.

What I found was that this product really should be used as a treatment, and not a conditioner. It absolutely works wonders (and did for my roommate) in regards to making your hair look visibly healthier, softer and shinier. However it doesn't detangle like a typical conditioner, and it doesn't rinse clean out of the hair like one. While the company does say it can be used as such, I would definitely not recommend it. This works beautifully for severely dry, damaged hair treatment-wise. Just make sure to cleanse and condition as normal after use.
Overall Thoughts
 I think that the skincare products I've tried from InstaNatural have been top notch. It's amazing how much product you receive for the price. I honestly don't think anyone would go through these containers very quickly, even with daily use. I love that their products are all-natural ingredients as well.
The Dead Sea Mud Mask and Hyaluronic Acid Serum have been wonderful for my skin when used correctly. While the Argan Oil Hair Mask didn't work well on my thin, color-treated hair, it did work to soften and repair my roommates thick, damaged hair when used as a treatment rather than a conditioner. 
Overall, I am very happy that I tried these products, and I would definitely repurchase and/or try more of their skincare line, however I would be a bit more hesitant to buy any further haircare products, just because I wouldn't be sure if they would work on my hair type.

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.
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All thoughts and opinions in this blog post are genuine and belong to Harlot Beauty. No monetary compensation was received, although goods and/or services may have been provided and accepted for purpose of review. Post may contain affiliate or referral links.

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