Aug 25, 2013

The Two Formula Trick to Creating Long, Full, Curled lashes with Long Lasting Results!

Ever noticed how ever much we follow the 'rules' in regards to creating longer, fuller, curled lashes we still end up with 'so so' results? Well here is a tip for those of us trying to achieve that full lush look that gives fantastic results!

Tip # 1

Curl those lashes!
Yes, I am sure you have heard this from every makeup artist and blogger on the web but this is the first step to creating the lashes you desire.
Is there a difference in the results achieved when purchasing a good quality eyelash curler.....Absolutely!
I have tried numerous less costly eyelash curlers on the market convinced that they would give me the same results as the more expensive ones and come to the conclusion that in this case you really do need to spend a little more to get the lasting results you are looking for.
Do I have any favorites?
Without doubt I have found the two below to be the best on the market
Shu Uemuru

Both Shu and Shiseido eyelash curlers are pretty much identical and I personally cannot tell a difference between them. I find the curve of the curlers to be very precise and both of them allow me to get very close to the roots of my lashes without pinching. Also, they require very little pressure when holding them together to create a beautiful smooth curl (no crimping here ladies)!

Choosing a mascara

Sounds so so easy doesn't it? but more often than not this is where the nightmare begins!
Should we choose volume, length, waterproof, regular, black, brown, fibers or without....the list of choices are endless and somewhat confusing.
After much trial and error I have come to a foolproof method of choice and application that works fantastic for me and gives me the long lasting results I have been looking for.
So let's break it down


This is an easy choice....basically choose a color that works for you and what you prefer. Personally I always stick to black or soft black

Tip # 2 Waterproof vs Regular

This is probably the most important part of the conundrum and if you get this right you will get wonderful long lasting results.....Always use BOTH!

Tip # 3 Thickness vs Length

Now this is another area which is down to personal choice. Some of us only want to give our lashes volume whereas others only want to achieve length. However, there are many who want and need to achieve both thickness and length and if this is the case always 'always' apply the volumizing mascara first!

Tip # 4 Application Instructions and Overview

1. Always curl your lashes using a 'good' eyelash curler (this does make a tremendous difference)
2. If using both Volumiizing mascara and Lengthening Mascara always use the Volumizing first
3. 'Always' make sure the first coat of mascara (Volumizing) is waterproof and only apply one coat....and here's why. Waterproof mascara dries much faster than regular mascara therefore once you curl those lashes and immediately apply the first coat of waterproof mascara the curl does not have time to drop prior to drying 'voila' your lashes will stay curled all day long.
4. Now apply your lengthening mascara.
With this application method you will be amazed as to how much longer your lashes will appear and how they will stay put all day long.

Personal Mascara Preferences

Maybelline Full N Soft Waterproof   $7.99                      

 Koji Dolly Wink Long Mascara (price varies)

May 30, 2013

Self Tanners/Tan Body Makeup/Bronzers

Now that summer is on its way I decided to give some fake tans a try in the hope that I would be able to find one that not only looked good but would also cover any skin imperfections along with being streak free, non transferable onto clothes, smell good and last but not least look natural (not orange). Did I find any that covered the above criteria? hmmm...maybe not all but pretty close!
Let me revert back a few steps and explain as to why I have been on a quest to find a good fake tan and the one and only explanation I have is due to the fact that I now take as much care as possible in regards to my skin which means protecting it from the sun's ray's as much as possible. Long gone are the days of lounging on the beach soaking up every bit of the sun's ray's from sun up too sun down. I still love the warm weather but do as much as possible to protect my skin but have to confess that I still long for that tanned glow that I accomplished whilst damaging my in came the trials and errors of self tanners and bronzing creams.
Let's start of by defining the difference between 'Self Tanners' and 'Tan Makeup/Bronzers'

Self Tanners

According to the American Academy of Dermatology, the most effective sunless self tanning products are those which contain dihydroxyacetone (DHA). Today DHA is the main active ingredient in self tanners and considered the most effective sun-free tanning additive. Products contain DHA in concentrations ranging from 1% - 15%. Most over the counter self tanners range from 3% - 5% with the professional products ranging from 5% - 15%. Keep in mind that the higher the percentage the deeper the color will be and it is therefore always best to begin testing these products with the lightest first enabling you to be able to learn how to work with them and which technique of application to use. This product will take between 2-4 hours before the tanning effect will appear on your skin surface and will continue to darken for an additional 24-72 hours before the final effect is apparent. One the darkening effect has occurred, the color (tan) will take between 5-7 days to fade and will not transfer onto bedding and clothing.
Self Tanners can be purchased in cream, lotion, mousse, spray and wipes and to decide which is best is a matter of personal preference. Professional Sunless Self Tanners are usually applied via spray tanning booths or airbrushed.


The most obvious benefit with a Self Tanner is the fact that it will last much longer than the Makeup/Bronzers i.e 5-7 days and will not


Can be difficult to find the most natural looking shade.
Will stain bedding or clothes in the first 2 hours.
Difficult to know if you have applied it evenly considering you have to wait 24-72 hours to see full effect therefore if application method is not accurate you will have to live with streaks or unevenness of application.
Difficult to know if the color applied will work for your skin as you have to wait 24-72 hours until full effect is obtained.
Important to exfoliate and moisturize well prior to application so as to create less chance of streaking. 
Fairly high is price.

Self Tanning Product Suggestion

Famous Dave's Moisture Tan $28.00 for 8oz + S&H($8.00)

Out of all the Self Tanners I rate this #1




Gives a nice golden to medium tan (may not be dark enough for those wanting that dark Mediterranean tan).
This is a thick white cream which if inexperienced at apply self tanner may be a little difficult but once you overcome this it is well worth the effort.
Does not have a tint, therefore practice is needed so as to get an even application.
No tint also means no staining of clothes or bed sheets.
Fragrance free (none of that horrible fake tan smell).
Lasts for 5-6 days
Fades naturally without going blotchy or patchy.
NO orange tint! The awful orange tint that often comes with the use of a Self Tanner is due to a high pH level of over 6 and almost every Self Tanner on the market (excluding Famous Dave's) has this issue, some are just better than others. If your Self Tanner has one or more of the following ingredients then you will definitely get a tint of orange.
Stearic Acid
Trethanolamine and/or Mineral Oil

Tan Makeup/Bronzers

I want to emphasize that when I say Tan Makeup/Bronzers I am not talking about products that are specifically made and purchased for the face but am covering products that are made for the body i.e legs, arms, decollete etc.


Super easy to apply
Immediate color
Hides blemishes and discoloration
Gives a flawless finish
Easy to blend
60 second drying time
Fool proof
Wide range of shades
Cost effective
Easily available
Sweat proof


Washes off in shower 

Led/Body Makeup Suggestion #1 Choice

Sally Hansen Airbrush Legs $11.79 (Target) 4oz

Yes, I realize that this states that it is for the legs but I promise you can use this on any part of the body!
It comes either in the aerosol spray can or in the tube cream formula and both come in a choice of four shades:
Light Glow
Medium Glow
Tan Glow
Deep Glow
I always keep some Sally Hansen Airbrush Legs on standby for those times when I need to add some color to my arms, legs and decolletage and do not have the time to apply a Self Tanner and am always pleasantly surprised as to the overall effect. It covers any blemishes and skin discoloration beautifully and the 'Light Glow' is perfect for my pale skin and does exactly as its description a lovely light glow. However, be cautious when choosing the darker shades as they do intend to come up a little darker than you would expect.

May 16, 2013

Boxtlak BL Anti Aging Cream

Recently I have been looking into 'Peptides' in relation to skin care and decided to test Boxtlak-BL Cream. Prior to beginning a months trial on the product I looked all over the web for any reviews but to no avail and I can only put this down to the fact that it is possibly not well known due to lack of marketing. But before I give the result of my testing lets talk a little about the benefits of peptides for anti aging.

What Are The Benefits Of Peptides

Skin is made up mostly of collagen and it is collagen that gives our skin the plump fullness of youth. Young people have plenty of collagen hence why they have firm, smooth skin but as we age we loose collagen.
Peptides signal your skin to create more collagen and as we age collagen is destroyed but not replaced, therefore our skin becomes thin and wrinkled. The obvious choice is to replace the lost collagen but the question is how?
Peptides act as a signal telling your skin that it needs to make more collagen and the best way to do this is to apply peptides topically 'tricking' your skin into thinking that it needs to make more.
Peptide molecule's are small therefore enabling them to penetrate the skins protective barriers so as to get to the deeper layers. Peptides stake claim to not only promoting collagen production but also acting as antioxidants and this can be found in product lines such as Neova and Strivectin as well as the less costly options like Oil of Olay's Regenerist and Neutrogena's Visibly Firm Night Cream.

Neuropeptides May Have Botox Like Effects?

I am not too sure about this claim as there has not been sufficient research to prove this point. However, it has been noted that 'some' peptides (Argireline) has been shown to block transmission of signals to nerves to facial muscles but due to to small quantities used it is very unlikely.

Results and Conclusion

After giving Boxtlak BL a test period of one month I have concluded that I really do like this product.
Taking into consideration that I am a Retin A, Vitamin C, Niacinamide, Obagi user I cannot claim that using it alone would be of any benefit but used with my regular skincare routine I have been pleasantly surprised as to how it has complimented my skin. I have noticed that when applying Boxtlak BL first thing in the morning it does not leave any residue on my skin and my makeup apply's flawlessly requiring no primer or moisturizer whatsoever. I have noticed a subtle difference in the plumpness of my skin and I am hoping that with continued regular use I will get even better results.

Boxtlak BL Cream Description

The proprietary skin-active ingredients found in Boxtlak cream increase the rate of skin cell turnover as effectively as retinoid therapy without the redness, irritation and flaking frequently associated with retinoids. (clinical trial results on file).. Centella Asiatica extract has been shown in clinical studies to strengthen capillary walls, leading to improvement or eradication of small broken vessels on the face and nose when used daily. What does this all this mean to YOU? Quite simply...Younger, healthier looking skin, with better color, texture and elasticity. DIRECTIONS FOR USE: Apply small quantity to clean, dry face twice per day


Aqua, Tamarindus Indica Extract, Centella Asiatica, Caprilic Capric Triglyceride, Propylene Glycol, Palmitoyl Hexapeptide (BonT-L), Palmitoyl Pentapeptide, Sorbitan Olivate, Cetyl Olivate, Ceteryl Stearyl Alcohol, Cyclopentasiloxane, Olive Leaf Extract, Hydrolyzed Collagen, Alpha Lipoic Acid, Sea Kelp Extract, Soja Extract, Pomegranate Extract, Sunflower Oil, Allantoin, Ethylhexyl Olivate, Acetyl Tyrosine, Glycerine, Vegetable Protein, Proline, Adenosine Triphosphate, Sorbitan Palmitate, Cetyl Palmitate, Silanetriol, Stearic Acid, Perfume, Aluminum Starch, Octenylsuccinate, Methyl Paraben, Butylated Hydroxytoluene, Propyl Paraben.

Mar 31, 2013


There is a lot of confusion as to which order we should apply skin care products to the skin. So I thought I would put together a 'Quick & Easy' list of the basic and most common items used with their order of application.

Vit C Serum
Sunscreen and Moisturizer.
*If using a Chemical SS this needs to be applied *before* moisturizer. If using a Physical SS which are products that contain Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide these can be applied *before or after* moisturizer, whichever you prefer.
Primer (if you use it)
Cleanser *Please Note* If you use a Physical SS during the day you will need to remove this with an Oil Cleanser. If you use a Chemical SS you can use whichever cleanser you prefer.
Niacinamide Toner
(wait 15 minutes)
Vit C Serum
Wait 15 minutes
Retin A
Hydroquinone (if used)
Both the Retin A & Hydroquinone can be applied together by mixing in the palm of the hand first if preferred.
If you would like to introduce an AHA product into your routine this needs to be used in the P.M and alternated between the use of Retin A for example:
Monday & Thursday use AHA products and omit Retin A use
Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday use Retin A and omit AHA use

Mar 23, 2013

Weight Loss Tips

Signs of Food Addiction

Eating more than planned especially when you start eating certain foods.
The need to keep eating certain foods even if you're no longer hungry.
The need to eat certain foods on a regular basis.
The ice cream in the refrigerator or potato chips in the pantry 'speak to you'.


I have a dear friend who has a very addictive personality when it comes to food and soda. She is in complete denial but to the experienced eye it is very obvious. She cannot (and I mean cannot) have one of it a piece of candy or a can of soda. I have never seen her leave anything on her plate and amazingly this has not affected her weight significantly (she hovers between 5-10 lbs above her ideal). She is an intelligent women who is fully aware as to the consequences this will eventually have on her health and therefore has moments of 'clarity' and a resolve to stop these bad habits. Her determination and desire to overcome is genuine but no matter how hard she tries she 'always' ends up falling off the wagon.

Eventually, the food that gives you that feeling of satisfaction and 'high' will eventually cease to do so, and you will convince yourself that you eat it because you 'want too' rather than because you 'need too'. You will then, either increase the quantity (causing weight increase) or swap your vice for something different but equally unhealthy. (See the pattern here)?



We are often told by the multi billion dollar weight loss industry that we should not 'deprive ourselves' of anything. That we can eat that chocolate bar and still lose weight. Well that may be okay for some but for those of us that have food addictions this is not the case. In fact this advice is a recipe for failure and disaster!


You wake up in the morning swearing today’s the day when you’ll quit the candy, potato chips, fast food (what ever your vice is). You prepare a healthy bowl of oatmeal with chopped banana then 'bam' you remember that there is left overs of your favorite pastry in the pantry. You convince yourself that 'just one bite' wont do any harm but within moments you find yourself wolfing down the whole thing and wanting more. When you finally come down from your sugar high, and the reality of what you’ve done begins to settle in, the cycle of shame, guilt and sometimes disgust take over followed by 'I cant do this so why even bother'!


1: Start to recognize and list the foods that you have no control over. The things that you know you cannot just eat 'one piece of', the things that 'speak' to you from the refrigerator or pantry. Only you know what they are! This list may not be as long as you think but recognition is the first step to conquering and taking control of your addiction.

2: Remove the above from your diet exceptions!
Will this be difficult? Absolutely. This will take 28 days in total for you to lose the 'craving'. If you manage 10 days then fall of the wagon start the 28 days from scratch. This will be the most difficult part of the whole journey but so worth the end result!

Post or Pre Menopausal Diet

In my experience a low carb diet works best for those post or premenopausal. Taking it to extremes is not a requirement. I choose limit my intake of bread, pasta and refined sugar to a bare minimum and get my good fats from:
Greek yogurt
Olive Oil
Fatty Fish (tuna, Salmon,Mackerel)
Omega 3 supplements
When I first started eating this way many years ago my weight loss was very noticeable mainly due to the fact that I switched from a high carb/sugar diet therefore I lost fat quite quickly.
On the occasion's I have regressed from a low carb regime I am very aware as to how sluggish I feel along with becoming bloated around my mid section and I quickly revert back on track!


Like most medication, diet pills (either FX or OTC) have a lot of controversy attached to them. The majority of OTC diet pills are nothing more than caffeine stimulants that just give you the jitters. However, there are numerous FX diet pills that do give outstanding results:


This works by blocking approximately 30% of dietary fat being absorbed by your body


Meridia is an appetite suppressant that works by acting on neurotransmitters in the brain. Meridia increases the amount of serotonin, dopamine and norepinepphrine in the synapses of your brain—which results in a decrease in appetite.
Meridia has potential side effects such as dry mouth, constipation, high blood pressure.


This is probably one of the most popular FX diet pills on the market but is only prescribed for short term as they lose there efficiency with long term use.

Modafinil (Modalert)

This medication was originally prescribed for those suffering from shift work sleep disorder (narcolepsy) enabling shift workers to stay awake during the night. It has also been used in the military when it has been a requirement for airmen to stay awake for long periods of time whilst on missions but allowing them to be alert and function to there optimum. However, it was found that whilst taking the drug it had a side effect of weight loss.

Below is an article from Wikapedia:

Studies on modafinil (even those on healthy weight individuals) indicate that it has an appetite reducing/weight loss effect. All studies on modafinil in the Medline database that are for one month or longer which report weight changes find that modafinil users experience weight loss compared to placebo. In 2008, one small-scale study on individuals performing simulated shift work quantified the effect as a 18% decrease in total caloric intake on 200 mg/day, and a 38% decrease on 400 mg/day.

In experimental studies, the appetite reducing effect of modafinil appears to be similar to that of amphetamines, but, unlike amphetamines, the dose of modafinil that is effective at decreasing food intake does not significantly increase heart rate. Also, an article published in the Annals of Clinical Psychiatry, presented the case of a 280 pound patient (BMI=35.52) who lost 40 pounds over the course of a year on Modafinil (to 30.44 BMI). After three years, his weight stabilized at a 50 pound weight loss (29.59 BMI). The authors conclude that placebo controlled studies should be conducted on using Modafinil as a weight loss agent.


Mar 2, 2013

Age Related Weight Gain

The two most common factors to excess weight are consuming to much food (over eating) and a sedentary lifestyle (not active enough).
Now of course, the first thing we are told by the professionals in the multi billion dollar world of weight loss is all we need to do is 'decrease' our food intake and 'increase' our mobility and for those who are on the constant treadmill of trying to lose those few extra pounds OR trying to lose a monumental amount of excess weight this is not what we WANT to hear!
The majority of well seasoned dieters know exactly what they need to do. They have read every book. Followed every diet plan (old and new). Enrolled in numerous gym memberships. Bought endless pieces of equipment, all with the intent of succeeding 'this time'.
So why is it that even though we 'despise' how we feel, hate our reflection in the mirror, feel repulsed when we eat 'another' family sized bag of Milky Ways we cannot STOP!
The main issue here is that food is 'addictive' and we have to feed this addiction on a regular basis everyday so as to survive and I think this is a major issue that is just pushed aside and completely overlooked.

So why is it that the weight loss industry continues to grow even when the economic climate is on a down hill slope?

Because they fail to focus on the main issue which is addiction!  They continue to remind us as to what 'we' need to be doing which is 'eat less' and 'move more'and by failing to cure the real problem (food addiction) they continually have us returning for more and more help.
How many of you out there 'eat less' for 5 days a week then binge at the weekends?
How many of you out there 'move more' just so as you can 'eat more'?
Sound familiar!
I spent years, along with my sister running and owning a 'Diet & Fitness' club. We had over 1200 members who would come to our classes on a weekly basis. This was a combination of a one hour weight loss discussion group with a one on one weigh in followed by an hour of aerobic exercise. We had the privilege of meeting and sharing the lives of some of the most courageous women who were all struggling to not only 'lose' weight but also trying to keep the weight 'off'.
We realized over time that they 'all' had two things in common. 
1: They all truly 'desired' to lose weight. 
2: This was 'not' there first attempt.
So why was it after the first few weeks and sometimes months of commitment, eagerness and determination did so many of them stop losing or slowly start gaining? The easy option would of been for my sister and I to blame this on a lack of commitment on there behalf and just wait for the next 'new' members to enroll but being committed to these ladies of which we had become bonded with, we were not willing to accept this! Delving deeper and asking some pertinent questions we realized that there was a third factor in a high percentage of them and that was they had an 'addiction' to food!   

Can age have anything to do with excess pounds?

There is a lot of controversy in regards to this question. Some say that metabolism does slow down with age whereas others claim that an increase in weight is more due to the fact that with age we naturally slow down which decreases our ability to burn calories efficiently whilst still eating the same volume.
Cortisol definitely plays a big part in middle age weight gain. High cortisol is mainly due to stress and as we all know stress can be very difficult to control.
I believe that hormone imbalance plays the biggest part in middle-age weight gain and is often a symptom of your body simply being out of balance, not necessarily a lack of willpower or exercise. Symptoms of insulin resistance and adrenal fatigue due to lifestyle may have been developing over a period of time, but it is only after estrogen levels dip (for menopausal women) or fluctuate (for perimenopausal women) that they become noticeable. The seemingly “new” symptoms are a result of the link between insulin, metabolism, and body fat. Over time a low fat, high carbohydrate diet can lead to insulin resistance which causes the body to convert calories into fat, even on a diet. I personally choose to follow a low carb diet and have found that I can control my weight extremely well without to much effort. 
However, rather than using this as an 'excuse' we need to empower ourselves with this knowledge and use it to our benefit.

So is there a foolproof solution to loosing weight and keeping it off?

Unless we can sit in a room minus the temptations of alluring TV food commercials, have a complete shut down of fast food facilities, stop the production of cakes, cookies, ice cream and candy and have the return of food rationing then the answer is NO!

So what can we do?

We can stop believing that there will ever be a 'miracle' cure.
We can stop 'blaming' ourselves for being over weight....This falls into the categories of: I'm lazy....I'm greedy....I'm a failure.
Start to 'believe' in yourself and the power of 'will' and never succumb to the belief that you will 'never' lose the extra pounds (never say never)!
Repeat to yourself over and over again throughout the day that you 'are' at your ideal weight...believe it enough and it 'will' become your reality!
Commit to doing 'the best you can do'.

Over the next week I will be covering things that I have personally found to 'work' which will enable you to overcome or at least help with food addiction such as things you can do and supplements you can take.
Of course we are all very different and what works for one may not for another. However, having had the privilege of working with those who suffer with weight issues and/or food addictions I realize that there is one thing that everyone has in common and that is the need to have someone who will listen and understand......and hopefully I can fill that void.
Please feel free to leave your comments or questions below.  


Jan 10, 2013

CoenRich AstaXanthin Q10 Precious Hand & Finger Whitening Cream

Now that we are in the depths of the winter season my attention has been drawn to keeping my skin moisturized and protected from the outside elements along with protecting my skin from the damaging effects of the central warm air system. Not only does this effect the quality of my facial skin but I am also aware as to how harsh it can be to my hands.
Finding a hand moisturizing cream should be a relatively easy task but more often than not I find the majority or creams and lotions to be either excessively greasy or lacking in there moisturizing abilities.Then along came 'CoenRich AstaXanthin Q10 Precious Hand & Finger Whitening Cream' (rather a mouthful) which is another Japanese 'wonder' product!
This hand cream is not just a moisturizer but it is also classed as a 'Quasi' drug which basically means 'whitening'. The Japanese culture are very diligent when it comes to skin care especially in regards to keeping out of the sun and applying 'safe' whitening products to their skin so as to create a flawless, pale, smooth complexion. However, they do not just limit the use of 'Quasi' drugs to there faces infact they use it to all exposed areas including the hands.
Very often the hands and decollage are over looked when it comes to skin care protection and I for one have been guilty of this in the past.
I have been using CoenRich AstaXanthin Q10 Hand & Finger Whitening Cream for seven days now and in regards to the moisturizing effect I give it a 'thumbs up'. There is no lasting greasy residue and it sinks into the skin easily and quickly. In regards to the whitening effect the jury is still out as I feel I need to continue using it for at least one month before I can give an honest opinion.
Official Description
Kose CoenRich Q10 White Deep Moisture Hand and Finger Cream is formulated to fight against signs of aging like fine lines with dull appearance and loss of moisture due to long exposure to environmental irritants. This deep moist cream is enriched with high concentrations of coenzyme Q10, coix seed extract and Hyaluronic acid to give ample moisture and gives nutrients to your hands, leaving your hand soft, supple and smooth skin that feel like silk! KOSE blended three exclusive major components:
Coenzyme Q10 repair signs of aging, enhancing condition of skin to restore luster and elasticity.
Coix seed extract full expulsion of melanin accumulation allow hands to look brighter with a healthy glow.
Hyaluronic Acid Deep moisturizing effect that significantly infuses moisture into skin, instantly sooth dry and dull skin.
Active Ingredients:
Ascorbyl Glucoside (this is a whitening product which is much more stable than L Ascorbic).

Jan 4, 2013

    Tazorac vs Retin A 
I have had quite a few questions in regards to whether Retin A works better than Tazorac so I thought I would give my personal opinion (as I use both) along with the opinions of professional medical teams.  
Tazorac and Retin-A are both vitamin A-based drugs called retinoids. Retin-A is the name brand of a drug called tretinoin. Tazorac is the name brand for a drug called tazarotene. Retinoids speed skin-cell turnover and boost collagen production.
Tazorac comes in a gel or a cream. Retin-A comes in cream, gel, liquid and 'Micro' which is time released. Adapalene (Differin) is a retinoid which is an alternative to tretinoin and used mainly for acne treatment mainly due to it being less irritating. While Adapalene clearly has some anti-wrinkle properties, it remains to be determined whether it is as good a wrinkle-fighter as tretinoin or tazarotene.
Treatment of:
Both Retin-A and Tazorac can be used to treat acne. They both work by keeping pores clear and many people who use Retin-A see an improvement in their acne in four to six weeks. Optimal benefits are usually seen after three months.
People using Tazorac will see improvement in six to eight weeks.

Photodamage                                                          Both of these retinoids are used to treat photo-damage including brown spots, fine wrinkles, hyper-pigmentation, pore size and poor skin elasticity. Personally I find that Tazorac works much better and faster than Retin A in regards to treating pore size and I choose to use this on my nose and use Retin A on the rest of my face, neck and decolletage.

When using Retin-A, expect improvement after three to six months of regular use, and best results between six and 12 months.
With Tazorac the results are faster and you will see improvement in six to eight weeks of regular use and continued use after this point will lead to more improvement.
Stretch Marks
Whilst doing some research about Tazorac I found that some people were using it successfully to reduce stretch marks and therefore thought I would test this out for myself. I involved a friend of mine who had some stretch marks that bothered her and asked her if she would give Tazorac a try whilst I monitored the results. She eagerly agreed in the hope that it would be the one thing she had not tried that would possibly work. So as to be fair, we decided to apply Tazorac to one side of her stomach whilst leaving the other side untouched enabling us to be able to see if the experiment would work. The first two weeks there was no visible improvement in regards to the depth or color of the stretch marks in fact they appeared to become a little irritated. But by week four the stretch marks on the treated side had definite visible improvement, they became narrower and less deep which is amazing and this is something I would personally recommend trying if all else has failed.
Other Conditions
Tazorac can also be used to treat psoriasis and I have found this to be the only treatment that has work for one small patch of psoriasis I have on the inside corner of my eyelid. However, I have noticed that should I forget to apply this to the area the psoriasis returns within days.
Retin-A can also be used to treat a skin disorder characterized by small, red bumps called keratosis follicularis, as well as flat warts.

Side Effects
Both of the drugs can (will) cause a person's skin to be sensitive to the sun, severe dryness of the skin, redness, peeling skin and skin color changes. Both also can cause an initial acne flare-up that usually dissipates with further use.
Neither Tazorac nor Retin-A should be used by pregnant women.
A study published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology concluded that applying Tazorac once a day is more effective than a daily application of Retin-A in reducing papules and open acne skin bumps. The drugs appeared equally effective against closed acne skin bumps, according to the study. The study also concluded that the drugs are tolerated equally well by people.
Tretinoin a.k.a. trans-retinoic acid (the active ingredient in such popular products as Retin A and Renova) is one of the very few agents whose skin rejuvenation effects have been documented in many well-designed studies. Tretinoin works by triggering molecular switches in skin cells called retinoid receptors. These switches affect many intracellular processes including cell growth and differentiation, synthesis and breakdown of proteins (including collagen and elastin), sebum production, and possibly even the cell's lifespan clock (telomeres).
Based on several studies, tazarotene appears to be as effective as tretinoin against wrinkles. Furthermore, in one study 0.1% tazarotene reduced wrinkles faster and more significantly then 0.05% tretinoin over a 24-week period. Side-effect were similar for both agents, except tazarotene was more likely to cause a burning sensation during the first week (but not thereafter).
Most importantly, we must remember that whilst using any form of retinoid it is imperative to use a full spectrum sunscreen as 'all' retinoids will make the skin extremely sensitive to the sun's rays. Without the use of a good sunscreen the use of retinoids will, in my opinion, do more harm than good.