Wednesday, January 28, 2015

How to Salsa Dance

I received the products mentioned in exchange for an honest review on my blog. The opinions expressed are 100 percent my own.

I love to dance. It's not unusual for me to start grooving in the middle of a store when I hear a song I like. I'm the person in the car next to yours who is bobbing her heat to the beat. I am the person who is audacious enough to dance in church or kick of her shoes at a formal party before getting on the dance floor. Curiously, it's never bothered me that I'm not a very good dancer. In my mind, if you don't know how to salsa dance, no one will notice if you shake your hips enough.

To help me improve my skills, SalsaCrazy and DanceCrazy sent me some videos to help me learn merengue and salsa. The first thing that I noticed about the videos was the quality of the images. The cameras used aren't as good as the ones used on popular workout videos. They remind me more of the kind used to shoot public access shows. Don't let the video quality affect your overall opinion of the videos because the instructors are A+. They are experienced dance teachers who know how to explain the moves well.

The following are reviews of each of the videos I received:

Salsa Dance Workout


This is not a traditional workout video like the Crunch Cardio Salsa DVD (which I enjoy). Actually, I'm not sure why it's called a workout video. What I do know that this SalsaCrazy video offers a good introduction to salsa dancing. The teacher and his partner demonstrate beginning and intermediate salsa moves in a way that's simple to follow. I found the step-counting element a bit confusing at first, but it's not a big deal once you get the rhythm in your steps.

During the "workout" portion, the instructor combines the steps previously reviewed and has you dance along to music. While it's not a traditional workout, it's fun. An important thing to note is that you learn the steps as if you were the dance leader (male), not the partner (female). At the same time, you learn the steps as if you were line dancing, so there really is no leader or follower.

All in all, this is a good introductory video, especially if you don't have a dance partner with you.


Learn to Dance Salsa 

Another video from SalsaCrazy, Learn to Dance Salsa has the same male instructor and comes as a three-DVD set. You learn the same moves as the Salsa Workout video, but dance with a partner. The videos also teach new moves, variations on moves and dance tips.

This video is great for couples on a tight budget who want to learn to dance salsa. The instructions are so thorough that it's like having a private dance instructor in your home. The cost of the DVD set is less than the cost of couple dance classes. I feel the same way about the merengue video, too.



Learn to Dance Merengue, Beginning and Intermediate

Merengue, in my opinion, is one of the simplest dances in the world. If you have any sense of rhythm, you can master at least the basic step. The merengue video from DanceCrazy has different instructors than the salsa videos. Both are good teachers.

I like how the male teacher explains how to be a good dance leader. I always thought I sucked at dancing, but after watching this video, I realized that many of my dance partners were bad leaders.

The male teacher is more relaxed than the female teacher. She constantly looks at the camera, even when she dances with her partner, so her movements don't look as natural or comfortable. Ladies, when you dance merengue, you don't need to always look to the right (unless you want to look like you have a neck cramp are disinterested in your dance partner). 

Another thing to note about the video is that when the instructors tell you to move to the right, they sometimes move to the left. While I enjoyed the video, getting this small detail right would have increased its overall quality.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Does Garcinia Cambogia Work?

I received the product mentioned in exchange for an honest review on my blog. The opinions expressed are 100 percent my own. 

Garcinia cambogia, or the Malabar tamarind, is a weight-loss supplement. It's supposed to curb your appetite, block the body's ability to make fat and regulate blood sugar and cholesterol levels. The key in this fruit is the hydroxycitric acid (HCA) found in the rind. Studies show that HCA blocks the body's citrate lyase and increases serotonin levels in the brain, so you feel less hungry. Sounds good, right?

The Truth about Garcinia Cambogia


There are two sides to every story...or health claim. Those in favor of garcinia cambogia, like pathologist Harry Preuss at Georgetown University, state that you have to take a supplement that has at least 50 percent HCA and contains potassium, calcium and magnesium. Summit Nutritions sells a garcinia cambogia supplement with an 85 percent HCA complex and the ingredients that Preuss recommends.

Preuss and his colleagues conducted a study with 30 overweight individuals between the ages of 21 to 50 over an 8-week period. All the subjects walked 30 minutes a day, five days a week, and ate 2,000 per day. Those who took garcinia cambogia lost 400 percent more weight, an average of 12 pounds each, than those who did not take the supplement. Preuss later conducted a similar study and had similar results.

When Columbia University and Victoria University did their own studies, the researchers did not find compelling evidence that garcinia cambogia aids in weight loss, according to Consumer Reports.

A report published in a 2012 issue of Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition states that while there have been some successful human and animal studies, clinical trials have not reported the same outcomes. It also says in regards to human studies, the samples were small and the studies were short-term, so there is no evidence to support the long-term effects of garcinia cambogia.

Warning

WebMD warns readers that garcinia cambogia may counteract with:
  • Asthma medications
  • Allergy medicines
  • Diabetes medication, including insulin
  • Pain medication
  • Iron supplements
  • Anti-depressants
  • Statins
  • Blood thinners
People with liver or kidney problems should not take garcinia cambogia, as well as those who are pregnant or breast feeding. 

My Results 

Summit Nutritions sent me a bottle of garcinia cambogia and raspberry ketones for review. I've used it for about four weeks and have not experienced any significant results or side effects.

If you want to lose weight, I recommend that you talk to your doctor before taking garcinia cambogia to learn if it's right for you.


Friday, January 9, 2015

Look to Nature for Beauty

I received the items mentioned in exchange for an honest review on my blog. The opinions expressed are 100 percent my own.

This winter seems a bit colder and drier than usual, and my skin is paying for it. After ringing in the New Year with a nasty cold, my skin is screaming for moisture. When people ask me about my skincare routine, they're often surprised to learn that I use on my face as a moisturizer. Yes, oil.

Oil Doesn't Always Cause Breakouts

Cleaning with Oil

I'm blessed to have skin that isn't acne prone. Not only do I moisturize with oil, I clean my face with it, too. My favorite oil cleanser is LAVO's Deep Cleansing Oil because it dissolves stubborn waterproof mascara better than chemical-based eye makeup removers that contain mineral oil. LAVO makes its cleansing oil with coconut oil, vitamin E and essential oils, like lavender oil. For the price you pay, you receive a generously size bottle that has 200 or more uses.

Removing the Residue

After removing my eye makeup, I like to use a sponge or washcloth to remove the oily residue. I just discovered the konjac sponge, thanks to Oleavine. When it's dry, the sponge looks kind of looks like a pumice stone. It's flat, dry and scratchy. After letting absorb water for about 20 seconds, the sponge poofs up. It feels soft like a natural sponge, but silky. The texture is interesting.

After doing some research, I learned that the konjac sponge comes from the root of a plant that's native to Asia. People sometimes eat it sukiyaki. While the sponge feels soft, it gently exfoliates the skin, making it ideal for all skin types. On the package, Oleavine stated that you can use the sponge without soap because it naturally cleans your skin. When I tried this one morning, my skin felt greasy the rest of the day. I recommend using a bit of soap on it unless you have sensitive or overly dry skin.  

Mask

Once a week, I like to use a mud mask after I wash my face. The mask I've been using lately is the Dead Sea Mud Mask by Instanatural. Some mud masks irritate my skin, but this mask does not. It has no scent and you only need to apply a thin layer to your face. I make sure to spread the mask on my nose because it's good at removing blackheads. I like that it has organic oils and shea butter because my skin doesn't feel super dry when I use it.

Post-Wash

After washing my face, I apply a toner to shrink my pores and get rid of any dirt and oil that's still on my face. The Rose Water from Skin Daily Skincare Solution is a great option. The rose water smells like a fresh-cut bouquet in a bottle. Unlike toners sold in the facial cleansing aisle at the store, rose water is 100 percent natural and has all the same benefits.  

After using a toner, I like to apply a serum, like Naturalico's vitamin C serum. My favorite thing about vitamin C serum is its ability to keep my complexion clear. What makes Naturalico's serum different than others on the market is that it contains rosehip seed oil and sea buckthorn oil. The added moisture, in my opinion, makes a difference.  

Moisturize 

When it's time to moisturize my skin, I reach for Valentia Skin Care's Organic Rosehip Oil. I only need a few drops for my entire face. Unlike, rose water, rosehip seed oil does not smell like roses. It has no scent. My skin absorbs the oil quickly and my skin does not feel greasy afterward.

Sometimes I like to use Haven's Arc organic argan oil, too. Argan oil is a good general oil that you can use on your face, hair and skin. Sometimes I use it as a leave-in conditioner for my hair. The thing I notice the most when I use argan oil is how quickly the skin on my hands absorb it; it can't get enough. 


Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Facial Tissue Goes Wild

The following is an advertorial brought to you by Kleenex. All the opinions expressed are 100 percent my own. 

Check it out: a three-layer Kleenex!
Whenever I buy facial tissue, I always get the cheapest one possible. As you may guess, the tissue doesn't always feel comfortable, especially when I have a cold. Kleenex was kind enough to send me boxes of its Anti-Viral Tissues and Tissues with Lotion.

The Tissue with Lotion feels so soft, almost silky. I was really impressed with the Anti-Viral Tissue because it has three layers (see the picture). The tissue is thick, so I don't have to use as many.

If you want to try these tissues for yourself, Kleenex is offering $1.50 off any two boxes of Anti-Viral Tissues or Tissues with Lotion. Click here for the coupon.

I received the products mentioned through Crowd Tap, courtesy of Kleenex Brand, in exchange for an honest review on my blog.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Christmas Gift Ideas, Part 2

I received the following products in exchange for an honest review on my blog. 

Thinking of good gift ideas is usually difficult for me, so I try to think of gifts that are unusual (quirky) or useful for the recipient. This season, several companies have been generous enough to let me try their products and the following is a list of items that are definitely gift-worth.

Gift Ideas for Sporty or Outdoorsy People

  • Rash guard shirt: A rash guard shirt is a long-sleeved shirt that you can wear alone or an undershirt. The fabric clings to your skin, protecting it from clingy T-shirts, wetsuits and other types of active wear. This shirt is a compression shirt that helps add warmth when it's cold outside, but doesn't overheat your body. I like the fact that you can use it at a swim shirt or as a way to protect yourself from the sun. I ordered the blue shirt, but the other colors are equally attractive (check out the gray one).

    My husband actually wears this shirt and he likes the thermal aspect of it. He says that it feels a bit tight around his neck, but he doesn't really like shirt collars that are as high as this one.

  • LED rim or wheel lights: It gets dark early in the day in the Pacific Northwest. A great way to be outside and stay safe is LED rim or wheel lights. Simply attach a light to the valves on your bike or baby stroller. The lights are waterproof, so you don't have to worry about rain or puddles. Plus, they only turn on when you move because of a small censor within the light.

    The LED colors are nice and bright. My favorite is the color-changing light. The pack comes with six lights, six valve covers and batteries. When you open a light, the LED and the attached board may come out. This happened to me with many of the lights, but it was simple to put back inside. So far, I haven't had any bad experiences with these lights. I think kids would love these on their bikes.

  • Kobert waterproof cell phone case: I'm paranoid about getting my cell phone wet. With the waterproof case from Kobert, I can go underwater and still use my phone. If I use it all the time, I don't have to worry about dropping it in the toilet.

    The case has clear plastic on either side, so you can use it to take pictures and see the screen at the same time. It comes with a lanyard, so you don't accidentally drop your phone into a lake, and a stylus that allows you to use the touch screen through the plastic. I like that the case is big. I have a big Samsung phone; the case works for the big phablets and the iPhone 6 Plus (if you take off the case).
  • Softy sanitizing wipes: It's hard to stay clean while camping. If your campsite has a bathroom, you're lucky if it has soap in the bathroom or free showers. The sanitizing wipes from softy are big (7-by-8 inches), soft and gentle enough to use on your skin. I like that it has a soft, not-overpowering scent and doesn't contain alcohol. Plus, one wipe does the job of two or three traditional wipes, and is designed to remove dirt. While this is a good kitchen and home item, the wipes are good for campers. The only problem I've had with the wipes is with getting them out of the dispenser correctly.

Gift Ideas for Aspiring Health Nuts


  • Vitamin D3: Vitamin D is essential for your bones and overall health. I take it everyday. Nature's True Medicine sells a vitamin D3 supplement that has 2,000 international units (IUs). I like that vitamins are in gel tablets, so they're simple to swallow. They also don't have any artificial ingredients or fillers.

  • Nasopure nose wash: I'm a fan of the neti pot, so the Nasopure looked interesting to me. It's an angled plastic bottle that you hold upright. The bottle is similar to the neti pot, but you don't need to tilt your head so much.

    To get the water to flow out of the bottle, you have to gently squeeze it. The trick is that when you squeeze the bottle, you have to move it away from your nose before release your grip. Otherwise, the bottle sucks up the water that's in your nose (it's not a pleasant feeling).

    Right now, I prefer my neti pot, but I will definitely use the Nasopure when I travel.

Gift Ideas for the Kitchen

  • Silicone oil, vinegar and sauce bottle with basting brush: This bottle from Bee Sili is my new olive oil container. One end of the bottle has as spout and the other has a detachable silicone basting brush that you can use to spread the contents of the bottle. Both ends come with caps to keep the bottle clean.

    I like this bottle's slim design. My current olive oil bottle takes up too much counter space. When I make oven-roasted potatoes, I pour a bit of the oil on them and then spread it with the brush. After spreading the oil, I pop off the brush and clean it in the dishwasher.
  • Citrus zester: I reviewed two different zesters, or microplane graters, from two different companies this season. I found that they both work equally as well and are about the same price. I like the thick handle on the zester and the fact that it's a bit squishy because my hand tires easily when I have to grip something. Smarty Pants Supplies recommends using the grater for cheese, citrus, garlic, spices (e.g., nutmeg and cinnamon) and chocolate. The zester also comes with a cover to use while storing the tool. A microplane grater is a great addition to any kitchen that doesn't have one.
  • Danish dough whisk: Have you ever broken a spoon or spatula while mixing dough? I have. This strange-looking whisk is specifically made for mixing doughs and crusts. I had never seen a whisk like this until now.

    At first, the idea of using a dough whisk seemed strange. It's design, however, makes it simpler to mix dough and clean the metal parts. I often make my own gluten-free dough, which are looser than bread dough, but not as runny as cake dough. This whisk makes mixing the ingredients simpler without the need to use my stand mixer.
  • Wireless meat thermometer: With a wireless meat thermometer, you stick a probe into the meat and see its temperature on separate device with a screen. This allows you to roast, cook, broil or BBQ without constantly opening oven doors or grill hoods.

    The screen device has a 65-foot range, so you don't have to be next to the meat to see its temperature. The thermometer is simple to use and program. For example, the temperature was originally set to Celsius, but it was easy to set to Fahrenheit. I also like that you can tell the device the type of meat that you are cooking and it will tell you when it's rare, medium or well-done. My biggest (and only) complaint is that the product does not come with batteries, so I had to look all over my house for four AAAs.

Gift Ideas for Beauty Buffs

  • Oleavine Facial Moisturizer: This is my new favorite moisturizer. It's made from natural and organic materials, and is free of sulfates, parabens, petroleum, silicone and preservatives. To keep bacteria out of the bottle, it uses an airless pump. The way it works is cool.

    The bottle has cute butterflies on the outside and the lotion has nice, light floral scent. While the two previous beauty products are more for adults, this moisturizer is great for any age and for all skin types.
  • Yalmeh foundation brush: I'm a big fan of face contouring, but my foundation brushes were too big and flat, so I had to squish them into shape. I was excited when Yalmeh let me try their foundation brush because of its tapered design. The synthetic bristles are soft and the company compares its brush to the one the Mac sells. I've never used the Mac brush, so I don't know if its the same or not. I'm happy with the results.
     
  • Retinol moisturizer with vitamin C: I have vials of retinol serum and vitamin C serum that I use to help keep my complexion clear, reduce the appearance of fine line and prevent wrinkles. I like that InstaNatural combined the two in a moisturizing cream that contains jojova oil, shea butter and hyaluronic acid. My skin likes this moisturizer, which I use at night. While you can use the cream during the day, I recommend that you back it up with makeup or a lotion that contains SPF.
  • Retinol serum: If the recipient already has a moisturizer that she likes, put InstaNatural's retinol serum in her stocking. The serum contains vitamins C and E, and hyaluronic acid -- all the best in one bottle. This serum absorbs into the skin quickly and doesn't feel heavy. I use at night since I have skin that's sensitive to sun exposure.

Gift Ideas for Travelers

  • AirComfy travel pillow: My favorite travel pillow is a dog bone-style pillow that I made at home. It's super comfy, but really big. Of all the travel pillows on the market that I've tried, the AirComfy travel pillow is one of the best because it is compact and inflatable. You can also use it for lumbar support (bonus!). The pillow comes with a travel bag and carabiner so you can attach it to your carry-on luggage and keep it clean. The accessory self-inflates, but you can adjust the amount of air in it with the attached valve. The back of the pillow has a big elastic band that you can secure around the headrest, so it doesn't fall. Unlike other travel pillows, this one comes with foam inside, so you don't feel as if you're resting your head on a big balloon. If you want back support at night, inflate the pillow and place it between your knees when you lie on your side.

Gifts for the Home

PSS-100
  • Bluetooth speakers: Liztek let me try its PSS-100 and Ultra portable wireless Bluetooth speakers. Both speakers have rechargeable batteries that you charge via a computer's USB port, audio lines for use with non-Bluetooth devices and a built-in microphone so you can use the speaker as a speaker phone. The Ultra also has slots on it that allow you plug in a micro SD card or flashstick. While the Ultra has the extra ports, I like the PSS-100 better because it sounds better. Both, however, are good speakers.
  • Shower curtain liner: If someone uses a shower curtain, they can always use a liner. My old shower curtain was not that old, but it seemed impossible to clean. I hated it. Thankfully, Smarty Pants Supplies gave me a heavy-duty curtain that's anti-bacterial and mildew-resistant. The curtain has metal grommets around the holes at the top so the vinyl doesn't tear. The plastic is super clear and repels water, so mildew doesn't have a chance to form.

    I've had this liner for a couple of weeks and it has stayed clean on its own so far. I wish it had small suction cups on either end that would allow me to secure the curtain to the shower wall so cold air doesn't enter the shower and water doesn't mist out the sides. This feature is minimal considering the company's lifetime guaranty. 
  • Canvas log carrier: If you have a fireplace, prevent a pest infestation by only bringing in the firewood that you need instead of keeping a small pile in your home. Save yourself trips to the woodpile with EPI's heavy duty log carrier. The carrier has a leak-proof liner, sturdy handles and measures 27-by-12-by-12 inches. I already have a few people in mind for this item.
  • Chinese lanterns: I'm always looking for unique lighting ideas and like the look of paper Chinese lanterns. I have a lantern in my room that I use to create a soft glow when I don't want to wake my husband with the regular overhead light. Since these lanterns are white, you can paint them with watercolors to create a neat look. I plan to make an origami lamp with one of them.


Thursday, November 20, 2014

Christmas Gift Ideas

I received the following products in exchange for an honest review on my blog. 

Christmas shopping is hard for me. I never know what to get, especially for those who re-gift or seem to have everything. Lately, I've received some great products to review that make me think, "Hey, this would be a good present for (insert)."

If you feel stuck and need some Christmas gift ideas, check out the following products:

Gifts for those who have Leather Furniture or Leather Car Seats

I have an old, medium-sized leather couch. I never knew how dirty it was until I cleaned it with the leather cleaners and conditioner from Leather Nova. The products are made with natural ingredients, so there aren't any harsh fumes, and come with their own application sponges. The cleaner and conditioner are simple to apply and dry quickly. I recommend apply each of the products in the order listed above.

Gifts for Techie People 

  • Portable charger: Lifeguard's portable cellphone charger is great when your phone is almost dead and you need to use it. The charger doesn't power a device quickly, but it will give it a good boost when the battery icon is yellow or red.
  • Rear view monitor mirror: Perfect for a cubicle worker, a computer-screen mounted rear view mirror lets you see who's coming your way without having to turn around. 

Gifts for Travelers, Gamers or Crafters

Image from Wikipedia.
  • Slim packing cubes: These luggage organizers by Dot&Dot are awesome. Mine are light blue and fit perfectly in my suitcase. I used one to corral my socks, another for scarves and one for toiletry items. I used the fourth for the knitting supplies that I took with me. My knitting needles fit well inside the cube.
  • Display-sheet makeup bag: The first thing I thought when I saw this makeup bag, which uses display sheet material, is that it would be great for my husband's dice. He has dozens of dice that of all shapes and sizes for gaming. This bag makes it simple for him to dump the dice out onto the display sheet and put them away quickly.

Gifts for Cooks

  • Lemon zester cheese grater: I've never owned a microplane grater until now and find it to be an essential tool in my kitchen. While I don't like citrus zest, I like using this grater for harder cheeses and herbs, like ginger and garlic.
  • Bitpsy professional jumbo lemon squeezer: My old hand-held lemon juicer was a plastic contraption made of plastic that I was always afraid of breaking. The juicer from Bitpsy is big and made of stainless. It extracts more juice from citrus in less time than my old juicer.  
  • Bee Sili silicone oven gloves: It's so annoying when pans feel hot through my oven mitts. The silicone gloves from Bee Sili eliminate this problem and come with a silicone basting brush. I've used the gloves to adjust hot oven racks, remove cookie sheets from the oven and cook pizzas. The heart-shaped texture on the gloves makes it simpler to grip the items I hold.

Home and Beauty Gifts  


  • Beautonics Derma Roller: Derma rollers are my new go-to beauty product. I think that anyone over 30 could benefit from using one. This roller from Beautonics works as well as others that I've tried. I'm happy with the results. Check out this post on how to use a derma roller. 
  • Pilates for Dancers: With New Year's resolutions just around the corner, help a friend achieve her health goal with a fun workout DVD. 
  • Dr Song Home Professional Teeth Whitening Kit: Out of the whitening kits that I've used, this one seems to have the fastest results. I used it daily for 45 minutes with the LED light, followed by the remineralization gel. The kit comes with a mold-able mouth tray and a small brush, so you always use the right amount of whitening gel. I just wish the kit came with instructions.
  • Old Factory candle gift set: I tried the "Romance" and Coffee House" sets of candles. The "Romance" set has scents like rose petals, champagne and dark chocolate. The only candle that smelled as it should was the the rose petal one. The champagne candle smells like perfume and the dark chocolate one smells like vanilla cake. After I told the company about this, they sent me the "Coffee House" set with scents like coffee, chai and almond. These candles smelled like the item indicated on the label. 
  • AlphaHealthy Probiotics: These are more like a stocking stuffer that you give to a person with "regularity" issues. They work well. I take two a day, which is particularly helpful on days when my diet is low in fiber. The capsule don't have any particular taste and they are simple to swallow. Since I have lactose issues, it's simpler for me to take probiotic pills than eat yogurt.  

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Do Derma Rollers Work?

The following is an advertorial. I received the product mentioned in exchange for an honest review on my blog.

The short answer to "Do derma rollers work?" is yes. 

Do they work right away? No.

The derma roller I use.
A few companies had given me the opportunity to try the derma roller, or microneedling roller, and I passed because it looked too crazy; like a gimmick. Then, after reading about it on several reputable websites, I had to check out what the derma roller craze was all about, so I tried out Petunia Skincare's Derma Roller with 540 needles that are 1-milimeter long.

The idea behind this type of product is that it creates micro-lesions. When you skin heals, it will contain more collagen and elastin, which helps reduce the appearance of scars, fine lines, wrinkles, pores and other imperfections.

I've used the Derma Roller for almost a month. It doesn't really hurt when I use it, but it sometimes causes a strange tingling or burning sensation that lasts a couple of seconds. And, yes, there is minimal bleeding involved, but not enough to need a bandage.

So far, I've noticed that my pores are smaller over the areas that I've used it. The fine lines that I'm working on are going to take some more time. One thing that you must consider is that your skin will continue to change over the next couple of months, so the results aren't always immediately apparent. However, if you use it regularly, you will see result. I use mine once or twice a week.

In this video, a dermatologist who explains how derma-rolling works:


Now, don't panic. I don't use anesthetic cream on my face when I use my derma roller, nor does my face bleed as much as this woman's face. When I use the roller, only a couple places on my forehead look like they received pin pricks. The dermatologist is using a roller that has thicker needles on it than the ones generally sold to the public and he is pushing the roller on to the lady's face pretty hard.

How to Use a Derma Roller

  1. Wash your face. It's important to remove the dead skin cells, bacteria, oil and other impurities on your face before using a derma roller. I apply the facial cleanser using one of those sonic-type facial brushes. Dry your face after you wash it.
  2. Disinfect the derma roller. I spray rubbing alcohol onto my roller. Let the alcohol evaporate. 
  3. Roll the derma roller on your skin, working a section at a time. I like to work in small sections instead of large sections and do the follow: 
    1. Roll side-to-side 10 times
    2. Roll up and down 10 time
    3. Roll diagonally to the left 10 times
    4. Roll diagonally to the right 10 times
  4. Apply toner to your skin. Spritz the toner onto a cotton ball or pad and swipe it over your skin to reduce your pores and (eek) wipe away any blood.
  5. Apply a serum to your skin (optional). If you use a vitamin C serum, retino or hyaluronic acid, this is the time to apply it. 
  6. Moisturize your skin. Use a deep-moisturizing product. During the day, use a moisturizer with SPF.
  7. Disinfect the derma roller again. Yes, again. 
This college-aged (I think) guy, Cory, has a good video about how to prepare your skin and use a derma roller.


In Cory's follow-up video, you can see how well the roller worked for him.



The Best Derma Roller

The derma roller I use is the one that Petunia Skincare sells on Amazon.com. I can't claim that it's the "best" derma roller in existence, but I'm happy with it. The roller is sturdy, the surgical-grad stainless steel needles are sturdy and the roller comes with a sleek case that helps it stay clean.

Please consult with a dermatologist to learn if an at-home derma roller is right for you before using one.

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.