March 2009 - Posts
I have seen quite a few articles regarding recession proof beauty. In other words, these articles offer advice about ways to save money on beauty products during a tough economy. Most point out bargain drug store brands but I have to say that buying the cheapest products is not always the way to go. What counts is really getting a bang for that buck. Some things are worth the expense. Here are some questions to ask yourself when hesitating on a purchase:
1. Does the product work well and improve your skin significantly?
2. How long does the product last?
3. How much can you accomplish with this one product?
4. Can you live without it?
Some of my favorite products are a bit on the pricey side but worth it when you consider what you get out of them.
1. DDF Acne Scrub – $35 - This is a big 8.5 oz bottle that lasts forever. It’s very concentrated and only a dime sized amount is needed. It really gets the skin clean and clears up blemishes. It’s absolutely worth the price!
2. Ole Henriksen Micro Mini Peel System – $95 - Don’t gasp at the price tag. This system is far more effective than any spa facial I have gotten. I can’t believe how smooth my skin is after using. It’s supposed to contain enough product for eight uses but I have found that I can get twice that many if I’m careful. Think about how much 16 facials would cost. It ends up being an absolute bargain.
3. Blinc Kiss Me Mascara – $24 - I simply cannot live without this mascara. It doesn’t budge all day and doesn’t irritate. It comes off easily with warm water and light pressure. Sure, it’s on the pricey side but I can’t tell you how many mascaras I have purchased that sat in my drawer until I tossed them. I have definitely gotten my money’s worth out of this one. A cheap product isn’t a bargain if you don’t use it.
4. bareMinerals SPF 15 Foundation – $25 - one of the best ways to save money is to buy multi-tasking products. This foundation offers great flawless coverage in addition to SPF protection. It also improves acne and rosacea. That’s a lot of benefits in one product, a definite money saver.
Now that I have shared my favorite must-have products even during a recession, I’d love to hear about yours.
Does anyone remember that brand from the sixties called Yardley? I used to love that brand so much! I remember my older sister wearing the pearlish colored lipstick. I guess basically it was white. My Mom would let me get the little Pot O Glosses and I absolutely loved them. I remember the smell of the Yardley powders, soaps and things and it was my favorite area of the drug store to wander over to and gaze at for the whole time my Mom was shopping. While other kids were looking at the toys, I was looking at lip gloss! Holy cow! I just thought to myself I ought to Google “Yardley!” And come to find out, it’s still around. The website is http://www.yardleylondon.co.uk. Well more precisely some of the products are still available. Unfortunately, I didn’t see the lipsticks and glosses on the website; but I did see another favorite “hard to find” item. Talcum powder in a drum. I don’t know if you’ve noticed but it is so difficult to find good ole fashioned scented powder in a little round box. Yardley has them, complete with puff! But getting back to the subject at hand…Lip gloss. I love lip gloss. Nothing feels more moisturizing and sexy. And then to add to those attributes you can even plump your lips while you’re at it. If you love lip gloss like I do, you’ve got to check out a few of my favorites: Philosophy Old Fashioned Lemonade Lip Shine. This gloss provides gloss galore and tastes scrumptious to boot! Lip Fusion Micro Injected Color Shine. Comes in a variety of colors and provides ultimate moisturizing and instant plumping. A win-win in my book! BlingFusion Micro Injected Collagen Color Shine Beach Baby. Highly effective and my pick for the best lip gloss gift. Special limited packaging and virtually everyone will love the color. It’s a soft pinkish seashell color and boxed in a gorgeously gift-able, shiny gold "Bling"- embossed gift box. Go glossy girl!
How many of you feel that you’ve been let down time and time again by brands whose eye creams, serums and gels don’t end up working all because of their brilliant marketing and packaging? For instance, you’re on the net and you see an advertisement that are your exact indications such as puffy and dark circled raccoon eyes and how they are magically erased in before and after pictures. I’m sure a lot work too, because I know there are good products and cutting edge ingredients out there having been in this business so long and have tried so many brands and products it would make your head spin. But more often than not, I’m less than thrilled, which is probably why you don’t see me write about eye products very often. I have to be blown away to even suggest one to you guys or any of my friends or family.
I have to tell you it finally happened. I am blown away! I started using Canyon Ranch Brightness Eye Cream and wow, what a difference a sample makes! I had received a bunch of samples of it and my girlfriend happened to be over who is a complete eye cream junky so I just sort of thought ah what the heck I’ll give half of them to her. I figured even though I knew Canyon Ranch was a top of the line, very effective, professional spa line it would still be another eye cream that probably wouldn’t make me shout for joy. Not to mention you should have seen Deb’s face when I gave her all those samples. She looked like she had just won a new car or something.
A few days later I was packing a light bag to take a quick one hour flight and return in a couple of days so I just wanted to take a carry on. I grabbed all my samples (so the airline wouldn’t make me check on my larger sized jars, etc) and chose three or four of each steps of my regimen. I took some cleansers, scrubs, vitamin C packets, some moisturizers with SPF and those Canyon Ranch eye creams.
I used the eye cream with my bedtime regimen that first night I got to my sister’s house. The next morning I noticed really pretty eyes and believe me, I do not normally wake up with a pretty eye area. Usually I have puffiness and dark circles that are so prominent I look like a belong in a loony bin. However, that next morning my eye area really looked good. I used it again after that morning shower in my daytime regimen and again, almost instantly my eyes looked great! They were seriously luminous. I realized then and there I had stumbled onto something terrific. An eye cream that really did what it said it would. And not only over a long length of time, but quickly as well. I bought a jar and have been happy and bright eyed ever since.
After I realized that Deb had never said anything about her samples I just thought, “Hmmm, maybe the results are different for everyone and she just wasn’t as thrilled as I was.” But curious anyway, I gave her a call and asked her about them. I told her I had the best results ever and it had been a couple of weeks and she had never called me to tell me what she thought about the product. The little devil replied with, “Oh my gosh, Karen, I love it so much but I was worried if I told you, you would keep the other half of those samples!”
For as long as I can remember I’ve been pummeled with questions about brown spots and spider veins. I would share my thoughts and answers from proven results that I had seen along the way and products I had been privy to try on others. However, I myself had never had either brown spots or broken capillaries. Which in of itself is surprising considering I grew up at the beach and they are both cardinal signs of sun damage. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve definitely had my share of sun damage, but just not evidenced by those particular tell tale signs.
I’m pushing the half-century mark which by the way, I’m fine with. I wouldn’t trade my age to be 30 again for all the tea in China! However, having said that, I’m also noticing some peri-menopausal and other changes in my skin. So instead of succumbing to aging (other than aging gracefully) …I get all over it the first second I notice any new signs or what I perceive to be negative changes to my skin. Whether it be health or beauty related. I want to keep the bar raised nice and high so that one) I’m healthy, happy, and as gorgeous as I can be. And two) I can still be thrilled that I’m not 30!
So anyway, one of my best friends’s Mom told me that she wanted something for her brown spots when I had asked her what she would like for Christmas. I chose DDF Protect and Correct UV Moisturizer SPF15. This multi-tasker is one of my favorites for moisturizing, fading sun spots, and protecting against future sun damage. In addition, it contains light diffusing particulates to immediately help skin appear smoother and even toned. In general, you usually can’t go wrong with DDF! It’s a very effective and professional line. So when in doubt, try a DDF product and chances are you’ll be a DDF user for life. So I bought one for myself as well as my friend’s Mom and I am already looking much better. However, I still needed to do something for those broken capillaries by my nose. That gave me two options, one: I quit drinking alcohol or two) I find a product with vitamin k that actually works, or three) I keep using up tubes of concealor. The first option was a joke, on more levels than one…lol; the last option isn’t a treatment, just a band aid, so that leaves option number 2 as my educated decision.
Now to address the spider veins. I had to rule out laser therapy because it’s just too expensive for me plus I had already heard great things about Auriderm Clarigel. It’s a very effective product with vitamin K high on its list of ingredients. It is one of the best products I’ve come across for fading, eliminating and preventing spider veins in a very long time. At least it did in my case. I’m sure individual results vary. Actually I’ve never come across anything quite this effective before, but I certainly have gotten my hands on some good ones. This one just worked best for me.
So sit back and relax. However, keep your eye on that ole aging ball, because it will blindside you if you don’t. However, when you’re on top of it, the ball is definitely in your court!
Ok, hopefully you’ve read yesterday’s entry: Facial Cleansers for Oily Skin! Part one. If not, you probably should read it. If you don’t have time, here it is in a nutshell.
If you have oily skin and you’re using strong clarifying cleansers, exfoloiators, and/or are massaging the skin to aggressively you will end up in a vicious cycle of producing more oil. Don’t dry out the skin with irritating drying agents and cleansers or scrub the heck out of your skin with harsh exfoliators, because in the end those little sebum producing cells will work overtime and produce more oil.
I suggest you try one or two of the products below. They are highly rated cleansers and exfoliators for combination and oily skin that do not strip the skin. Most are considered “natural” (using ingredients such as botanicals instead of harsh chemicals) and leave the skin balanced, hydrated, and refreshingly clean and clear. Be sure to use as directed and remember two words…calm and soothe. No more power washing!!
I’ve randomly included just a few of the fabulous reviews I found on SkinStore.com for some of the products listed. However, there are many, many more, so be sure and check out what others are saying. You’ll be amazed and pleasantly surprised.
Sundari Lemon Cleanser for Oily Skin
I really loved this product. It helps keep my oily skin in check. The gentle exfoliation really helps turn over rough surface cells and old acne flakes. Does not over dry oily skin, can be used numerous times per day if you wish.
Pevonia Combination Skin Cleanser
My skin is oily and the tone is uneven. My friend left her Pevonia scrub at my apartment and I tried it... I am in love. My skin not only feels better, it looks better and was noticeably less greasy for THE ENTIRE day. I didn't even have to reapply powder. This is a miracle product. I'll never go back!
Korres Orange Blossom Cleansing Emulsion
Neoceuticals Antibacterial Facial Cleanser PHA 4
This is the best facial cleanser that I have found to actually deep clean my skin, remove makeup, and not over dry my face. Helps my oily skin look healthy and definitely reduces breakouts. I have been using it for about 2 years now and won't ever switch!
L’Occitane Red Rice Exfoliating Powder
This product does exactly what it describes it will! I had been using The Greatest Love, an exfoliator from Philosophy, until it was discontinued. It was a challenge to find a replacement exfoliator. This red rice powder is so gentle on the skin since it is so fine. And because the granules are not harsh, I did not expect it to work, but after only 3 weeks, my skin looks and feels noticeable different! If in doubt, I say ADD TO CART!
Dermelect Detoxifying Oxygen Facial Commission
I have never used a cleanser that so thoroughly did the job without stripping my skin away. Not only is it luxurious, but EFFECTIVE. My complexion and face look absolutely glowing. I use it as a cleanser in the morning and as a foaming masque at night!
Philosophy Never Let Them See You Shine Scrub
Sensiclear Purifying Cleanser
I don’t need to copy and paste any reviews about this one because my daughter uses the whole regimen and calls SensiClear “fool proof!”
I’m constantly amazed at how often anyone who has acneic or oily skin chooses the most aggressive cleansers and exfoliators on the market. Just today, I was reading other beauty blogs and websites where people who would describe their skin as oily refer to themselves as power washers or ask for the strongest cleansers and the most aggressive exfoliators available. I am not a dermatologist and obviously if you’re under the care of one then you would care for your skin as they have directed. But having said that, sometimes doctors can assume you know something that seems obvious to them but in reality we as patients may not know. I’ll never forget one time my daughter’s pediatrician told me a story about a young mother who brought her toddler in for an ear infection. So the doctor prescribed amoxicillin in a liquid suspension form complete with the dropper for accurate measuring of dosage. Well a few days later the mother returned with the child who was at that point much worse as opposed to much better as the doc would have thought given the mother said that the child received the antibiotic every three hours as he had prescribed. He looked in her ear and couldn’t see the eardrum. All he saw was pink goo. He said, “it looks like the child must have access to something pink and putting it into her ear causing the condition to worsen.” The mother replied, “The pink stuff is the antibiotic you told me to give her everyday for ten days.” It was then he realized that she was putting the antibiotic right into the infected ear as opposed to giving it to her orally.
So what I am saying at least in reference to the example above is we may not be using our skincare products as recommended by doctor, pharmacist, skin care therapist, etc. in the way that they intended for them to be used. The cleanser may be a great choice but the application may or may not be the way he or she intended it to be.
I’ve always found that when I’ve suggested a product for oily skin; they achieved better results when they use it less aggressively. Sebum production loves to go into high gear when the skin is massaged aggressively. Additionally, the person with oily skin will tend to gravitate towards the strongest of drying agents (or very strong clarifying cleansers) to soak up excess oil. Again, causing the sebum producing cells to work overtime and the result can often be an even oilier condition.
So if you think you may be one of the people who keep finding yourself in this vicious cycle, try a more gentle technique or regimen. Again, if you’re under the care of a physician, that is a separate issue, and you need to use as directed as well as the products or prescriptions he or she recommends. But if you’re like many of us who are just ordering products on our own, I am just suggesting you give this try.
For dealing with oily and/or acneic skin try a chemical cleanser/exforliator as opposed to a harsh scrub. Or conversely, try a milder scrub and a gentle cleanser. What I’ve found is oftentimes people with that skin type not only use a strong acid type chemical cleanser but even use it along with a harsh exfoliating scrub. That’s just too much of a good thing, which at the end of the day backfires. It’s kind of like the old saying, “if a little is good, then a lot is better.” Which isn’t even close to being true especially in this case, in my opinion.
Take it easy tiger! Treat your skin more along the lines of a sensitive skin type. And for those of us who have acne or blemishes; it really is sensitive. Imagine scrubbing the heck out of a wound. You just wouldn’t do it. You would clean it thuoughly but still you would be gentle with it. Just as a wound heals better when you keep it cleansed and take good care of it, your problem skin will fare better as well.
For great examples of the cleansing products I would choose for oily/acneic skin with as little irritation and increased sebum production as possible; check out Wednesday's blog entry!
The most interesting thing happened a little while ago that I just needed to tell you about. My girlfriend is spending the night to help me put stuff away in my new home and get organized. After a hard day of moving boxes, etc. she decided to jump in the shower. When she was done we were chatting in the dressing area and I noticed her putting on what I thought was her husband Jeff’s deodorant. So I asked her if she accidentally brought his along in her overnight bag. She said, “No that’s what I’ve always used.” And I have to say now that I think of it, she’s right. We’ve shared hotel rooms on vacations I’ve stayed with her many times and never once in thirty years mind you have I noticed typical girl’s deodorants in her bathroom. And even more importantly I’ve never seen her sweat nor have any odor even after a hot day of running and/or working out. She also told me how her daughter (a collegiate soccer player) now uses it as well. She was getting painful Botox shots for underarm sweating (one of its medical uses) and no longer wanted the expense and pain that the Botox caused, so she tried her Dad’s antiperspirant as well and found that it works effectively.
I got to thinking she’s really on to something. What difference does it make if you wear a man’s deodorant or a woman’s? I mean considering you like the fragrance or you find one that is unscented. I actually think (and this is just an educated guess), that a man’s deodorant might very well be stronger. Some women sweat more than others and they go thru every deodorant in the market (staying on the girls side) to find one that works never considering stepping over to the man’s side. I say we just give it a try and see if it seems to be a stronger more effective deodorant/antiperspirant. If we’re wrong the only thing we have to lose is the cost of the product. And for me that’s a small price to pay for an experiment that may just likely have a good outcome.
Debbie’s is unscented. However, when I try one I don’t care if it’s scented or unscented because I’ve always loved the scent of men’s colognes more than women’s anyway. Therefore it will be easy for me to see if it’s stronger (and works better) than what I normally use. And the irony in the (men’s scent vs. women’s) scent issue is I’ve always used unscented but on the woman’s side of the aisle! So all this time I could have probably used a stronger more effective product, but because of marketing and just plain ole follow the sheep routine it just never crossed my mind to cross the gender line (or in this case, gender aisle) when it came to my deodorants.
I found it so strange that for years she’s asked me every beauty tip I’ve ever known and yet she had a great one all along right under her arm…sorry, there was just no way of getting around that pun! I looked at the 2 deodorant/antiperspirants in my medicine cabinet and one was pink and the other was light mint green with feminine labels. I’m not saying they aren’t effective, I’m just curious if they are AS effective?
So if you give this a try, be sure to comment or forum me so I can find out how it worked for you.
Keep in mind, if you’re sensitive to new or possibly stronger products its possible you may be sensitive trying these. I’d suggest you do a patch test or little area first and just be sure you can wear it without any irritation. If you find that you are indeed sensitive to this or any product you would obviously need to discontinue use and for more severe problems see a doctor.
Lastly I was thinking, for years I’ve been suggesting female skincare to men (taking individual indications into consideration of course). So it would seem to me that ingredients that work well in skincare do simply that; they work well regardless of gender. However, as always, there may be exceptions, but for me in general I’ve never had any problems with the men I’ve set up with what most would consider a skincare line developed for women. Don’t look at packaging if you’re into taking on this experiment because it may cause you to back away. Remember it’s the product on the inside we’re trying out.
So please when you help me out with our little Beauty Research study try to keep it some what logged. Time of day you put it on? Number of times, such as morning and bedtime application. How did it hold up at the gym and any other information you might think pertinent to keep it as “controlled” (for lack of a better word) as possible.
My hypothesis is that a deodorant/antiperspirant made specifically for men will work better than a woman’s.
After being down in the dumps from a recent move gone bad, I realized I needed some kind of serious therapy. Basically the stress got to me and I looked like “crap!” Now I know that the best way to deal with stress is good nutrition, exercise, and getting a good night’s sleep. However, I was much too anxious to eat, too tired to do much of anything from lack of sleep, and I certainly didn’t want to leave the house looking and feeling as bad as I did.
I didn’t know what to do with myself and all of a sudden the little proverbial light bulb turned on in my head and I had the answer. I found it strange that when anyone I know is feeling down I help them by giving them a few beauty ideas. The famous little saying “when you look good, you feel good” is so on point! Yet when I happened to be the one who needed the help, I never thought of taking care of myself that way. I would never let you, my family or friends down by not suggesting a few ideas on how to look good to feel better. Whether it be how to take care of those puffy eyes, or get their hair nice and shiny by suggesting a conditioning mask , or even by doing a home exfoliating peel I found that once the sad person starts to look better they really perk up. The strange part was that I never thought of it for myself.
So I took a look at myself in the mirror and the first word that came to mind was “dull.” I needed a few things to brighten me up (actually on more levels than one). So I thought about highlights for my hair but realized I’d have to leave the house and that was definitely not going to happen. So I thought maybe some new cosmetics would be just the ticket but realized I’d never go to the mall looking the way I did, not to mention I couldn’t even get up the motivation it would’ve taken to get out of bed to eat. If I couldn’t talk myself into driving a short distance to get the highlights (when all you have to do is sit in a stylist’s chair), I knew I’d never be able to walk around a mall.
But then once again that cool little light bulb flickered some light and I thought, “oh my gosh, I know what to do; I’m going shopping online!” I actually got out of my bed and went into the kitchen to get some cheese and crackers and some kettle corn. Right then and there; I knew the concept was working. The whole idea kicked in my appetite and revved up my motivation. I was starting to have fun!
I got online and went straight to all of my favorite beauty websites and read beauty blogs and got beauty tips that I had never even thought of. It turns out that this beauty therapy I share with others really WAS just what the doctor ordered. As it turns out, I ordered a few things myself.
At SkinStore.com I was looking at the home page trying to decide where to begin and I saw the word “gifts.” I thought why not get a gift for myself? It will not only cheer me up to get a gift, but the contents will be beauty products to make me look better, which in turn will make me feel better. Additionally, I didn’t let buyer’s remorse set in because gifts, kits and sets are almost always a better value, simply because there are usually bonus items thrown in or just a better deal to purchase the combination packs.
There were dozens of pages of under the tab of “gifts” but I had only perused a few when I saw sitting side by side, two of the best sets ever to brighten me up. The Caudalie Vinoperfect Radiance Set was just the thing to brighten, exfoliate, nourish and luminate my dull skin. I saved about forty bucks on this set by purchasing it as a set. The next gift box was just the thing to bring it all together. In this Bare Minerals treasure chest called Bare Minerals Barecrystals Collection were brilliant, vibrant and yet understated color for eyes, cheeks and lips. The set came complete with professional makeup brushes for gorgeous unflawed application. The only words to describe how I felt when I got that Skinstore delivery the very next day (I went with overnight delivery, considering the condition was stat!) and used every product in proper order was “bright and luminous.” I shined once again; on more levels than one!
My older daughter Ashley was always trying to get me to straighten my hair. I’d say, “Honey, I like my curly hair.” I always thought it was soft and shiny and kind of cute curly. However, she would often tell me it was time to “join this millennium” and try and come at me with her flat iron in tow. I finally succumbed one day, and I couldn’t believe how cute it was. She was right! I even had a group of girlfriends tell me at lunch one day I looked ten years younger with straight hair. Of course, at that point I was sold on straightening. At least every now and then anyway. One, it’s easier to dry my curly hair naturally, and two, I never wanted to use that much heat on my hair all too often. In my day, hair drying tools equaled mucho damage.
Another thing my bright sometimes smart(you know what) daughter would tell me is that the best hair straighteners or flat irons for long curly hair are the big wide ones. Well that always made sense to me because it seems as though you would get a lot more hair straightened at once.
However, I noticed a lot of my friends and hair stylists using the skinny ones. Like 1&1/2 inches or even less. My big bulky straightener must be a good three inches wide; but it seemed to do the job fairly well, so I assumed it was right on point. Our hair did look pretty good and Ashley’s hair is so naturally curly she could make Shirley Temple’s hair look straight as an arrow.
The other thing I had noticed is when it had come to flat irons not only did I think bigger was better; I also never wanted to pony up the dough for a more expensive one. Even though I know in this beauty biz; more often than not; more expensive is almost always better. There are a few exceptions to this rule; however, not when it comes to hair appliances and products.
But I only had so much I could spend so I went with the largest one. Well it turns out that thin is in when it comes to hair straighteners and bigger is not always better!
I went with Metropolis Technology’s T-Ion Digital Toumaline 1 inch Flat Iron. I can’t even begin to tell you the difference in my results. The tool is so much more effective. Not only that, it’s so easy to use and control. It’s not heavy or bulky and it works about a hundred times better.
Because of the tourmaline technology you’re getting a massive amount of Ionic energy which exudes huge amounts of negative ions that seal the cuticle. It locks in moisture and your hair withstands humidity and that resultant cuticle seal creates amazing shine and manageability.
Metropolis Technology also makes blow dryers and curling irons as well as other straighteners. They are definitely a little pricey, but I can’t even begin to tell you how worth it. I found mine on SkinStore.com and they were on special so I got a great deal. And even had I not found it on sale it still would’ve been worth every penny. I’ve never had hair look and feel like this. I feel like the proverbial Pantene girl!
Add to that ionic energy by starting with quality hair products from Ojon (this brand is amazing!!!) and you will absolutely love your hair. And nothin’ beats a good hair day!
Last Friday I shared with you all the fabulous little tools and products I had discovered for my makeup bag. Today I thought I’d share with you some cool websites to find the cutest, most practical, cheapest and not so cheap make-up bags and train cases available.
I think pretty much everyone knows if you want cute and inexpensive; ya gotta think Target! Check out Sonia Kashuk’s Double-Zip Foldover Cosmetic Bag at www.target.com. It’s so cute in Crazy Print and a steal at about ten bucks.
For those of you who want to have fun customizing your own cosmetic bag or train case, you can have a blast at www.stephaniejohnson.com. You get to choose from many bags and/or train cases in different sizes, shapes, colors and prints. And if that’s not enough to tantalize your creative makeup bag shopping gene, they really aren’t all that expensive! Celebrities are often sited carrying these great Stephanie Johnson bags or ordering them for special event gift bags. Check it out! But beware, its so much fun you’ll be creating different bags for hours.
Makeup bags make the most adorable bridesmaids gifts. Google “makeup bags” and click images. You will get hundreds of cute ideas for yours.
Lastly the juiciest of all makeup bags, in my opinion, has got to be; you guessed it from www.juicycouture.com.
And just think after finally choosing and purchasing the perfect cosmetic bag the best part is still yet to come. You get to fill it up!!!
Don't you just envy your friends who have the perfect makeup bag? Besides the fact that it contains the best beauty products on the market, its usually the most fashionable one available (usually decorated with girly things such as cute shoes and brightly colored in hues of orange, yellow and pink). Additionally, she keeps it so clean it hardly looked used at all, as opposed to my dirty ziploc bag or the old pencil box I found in my daughter's notebook. Mine was full of broken compact cases, a mirror from the top of one of the broken compacts, the sides were coated in bronzer, and nothing that was actually useful. Well except for some q-tips I used to dig the leftover lip color out of my old container of lip-gloss. My friend's bag is not only adorable but inside she keeps the coolest beauty finds ever. I discovered her bag of tricks one night when we were out and I was wearing a low-cut dress that I was so self-conscious in. I was just sure that I'd have a wardrobe malfunction and the girls might fall out. I mentioned my worries when she and I took a bathroom break at the restaurant. She proudly said I can take care of that and pulled out the treasure chest. She pulled out boob tape and within seconds the girls were secure! The next thing I know we're looking in the mirror freshening up our make-up and the great hits just kept a comin.' Finally I said, "let me look in that bag." I was absolutely amazed with the content. That night changed my life. My purse is now so organized and I too carry the best beauty bag in town!
Here's what I now carry in my precious cargo bag!
To quickly curl my lashes I use the Talika Mini Eyelash Curler. Within in a few seconds my eyes look great. It costs a little more than most of the traditional eyelash curlers but works much better and its tiny so it hardly takes up a half-dollar sized space in your makeup bag.
You can’t be without Toleriane Eye Makeup Remover Ampoules. Just take a cotton ball and swab eye makeup away. Single use ampoules make travel easy.
Never be without L’Occitane Shea Butter Hand and Foot Cream. It’s the most emollient and effective creamy balm on the market.
One of the most important things you need in tow, is a quick fix to clean your teeth and freshen your breath. Take a look at Supersmile Professional Whitening Gum.
Illuminate your skin on the fly with Molton Brown Heavenly Gingerly Body Shimmer Powder. It’s glamour ala carte right in your make-up bag! Truth be told all Molton Brown products will make you look and feel glamorous!
Never leave the house without crucial implements such as tweezers and fingernail file. Check out Tweezerman Travel Size Beauty Kit. These quality, professional tools are included in this kit with other important implements as well.
And lastly my absolute favorite “must-have” is Stila Cherry Crush. This multi-tasker stains your lips and cheeks so you’re never without rosy cheeks and dazzling lips
Add your favorite makeup, fragrance and any other essentials you require and you’re ready to go anywhere!
Even though it’s not convenient to think about, we all need to consider our water consumption and make an effort to conserve. Parts of the country are experiencing a drought and even those parts that aren’t experiencing drought conditions need to think about conservation and not be wasteful.
I know that being a product junkie often goes hand in hand with too much water usage. I certainly would like to do my part to save water so I started thinking about my routine. Here are some tips on how to save water in the bathroom:
1. Turn the water off at the faucet when you’re not using it. For example, when you wash your face, turn on the water to wet your face and while you’re lathering and massaging with your cleanser, make sure the faucet is off. Turn the water back on only when you’re ready to rinse.
2. Take quick showers rather than baths. When you install a water saving shower head, you’ll use much less water than with a bath. Filling a bath tub requires a large amount of water.
3. Leave the water off in the shower while you shave. Once again, try not to leave the water running unnecessarily. Shave with the water off. When you’re ready to rinse, turn it back on.
4. If you’re really motivated not to waste water consider doing this: while the water from the shower is warming up, catch that water in a bucket. Use it later to water the plants.
I must admit I have a ways to go before I consider myself to be truly water-wise. Changing old habits is hard and constantly trying to be conscious of one’s water consumption takes a big effort. Does anyone else have some good tips for saving water?
For a gorgeous, natural and younger looking face, choose loose powder mineral foundation and concealor in the correct color for your skin tone. Traditional liquid foundation actually accentuates lines and texture. Another mistake that is often made is using too dark a color for foundation and too light a color for concealor. Choose a color that matches your skin tone or even better choose a kit that contains a couple of shades so you can blend the two if need be to formulate the best color and tone for you. Bare Minerals is a great example of quality mineral makeup that offers many easy to use kits. The Bare Minerals Get Started Kit comes with two shades of foundation and includes exceptional brushes which are mandatory for impeccable application. With Bare Minerals, the result is a flawless face that doesn’t look “made up.”
Recently I discovered an interesting Blog called smellyblog. You can check it out here: ayalasmellyblog.blogspot.com. How could that name not capture your attention? It definitely piqued my interest and I had to check it out. The author is Ayala Sender, the founder of Ayala Moriel perfumes who talks about creating fragrances inspired by her childhood memories. This really got me thinking about the power of scent.
I have always had a very strong sense of smell and have often associated certain smells with various people, locations and events in my life. My parents joke that I once found a group of people in a crowded arena by scent alone. My father had aspirations of me making it big as a famous wine taster but that never happened. I considered working in fragrance but unfortunately, strong perfumes tend to give me a headache. Having a strong sense of smell is not always positive.
Scent is a much more powerful sense than most of us realize but some of us have really strong tendencies to associate smells with all kinds of things. Certain smells may make us nervous, happy or sad. So when I read about creating fragrances inspired from memories, I could definitely relate.
I am fascinated by the art of making perfume. There’s definitely a great skill involved in creating a fragrance cocktail with distinguishing top notes, mid notes and base notes. Smelling perfume really is similar to tasting wine in that the sampler must identify the various components. It’s quite remarkable.
Does anyone else out there have an exceptionally strong sense of smell? Do you associate smells with people, places and events? I’d love to hear about your experiences.
Yesterday I was talking about the controversy surrounding the use of parabens and promised to share my feedback regarding the products I was able to sample from Boscia, a Japanese company offering paraben-free skin care. Boscia’s products are also free of any perfumes and dyes.
I was very pleased with the Boscia products I tried. If you’re a sensitive type or you’re looking for good, basic natural skin care, Boscia definitely delivers.
Since I have oily, acne-prone skin, the first product I tried was the Clear Complexion Cleanser. This cleanser for oily skin is incredibly gentle and gets the job done without stripping my face of its natural moisture. I was impressed since so many oily skin cleansers tend to irritate and dry out the skin. I also tried the Willow Bark Breakout Treatment which consists of only natural botanicals to treat and prevent acne. Once again, I was really impressed at how gentle the product is. Ingredients such as willow bark, willowherb and soapberry are known to help purify and calm congested, acne-prone skin. If you have particularly clogged pores and suffer from more than the occasional mild breakout, the Boscia line might not be aggressive enough for you. However, for sensitive skins, it’s a great choice. It can also make for great supplement for acne sufferers who can only tolerate stronger treatments once a day or every other day.
If you’re an oily type, you understand how hard it can be to find a moisturizer with sun protection that doesn’t feel greasy on the skin. Boscia’s Oil-Free Daily Hydration SPF 15 is a truly remarkable product. It is so pure and gentle and soaks into the skin immediately so that I don’t feel any residue at all. What’s more, it truly moisturizes and leaves my skin balanced and protected against the elements. Sensitive skin or not, this is a great choice!
The Smoothing Facial Polish is the last product I’ll talk about. There are so many great exfoliators on the market and I wanted to see how a natural scrub would stand up. My face felt super smooth after using Boscia’s polish. Yet, I didn’t experience any redness or irritation. On the contrary, my skin appeared calm and balanced immediately after using the product.
All in all, I would definitely recommend Boscia to anyone who has sensitive skin or is concerned about the effects of chemicals and looking for a natural line. Boscia will give you great results without the irritation or the worry.
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