Sunday, November 30, 2008

Fekkai Three-Minute Mask

How many of you are Sephora beauty insiders? Is that not the best thing, ever? It's free and you get cool stuff, as long as you give them your email address every time you shop with them, either in the store or online.

One of my beauty insider gifts a couple of months ago was the Fekkai Technician Color Care Mask. You put this on after you've washed and conditioned your hair, and leave it on for three minutes. It's just long enough to shave your legs while you wait. It leaves you with silky and shiny hair. So much so that it's noticeable, as evidenced by a shot of the side of my head from a wedding last month.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Benefit Posie Gal

Meet the Benefit Posie Gal!

It's my friend Kim.

How jealous am I that she gets free make-up for an entire year?!?

Friday, November 28, 2008

Holiday Gifts

As you go out today to begin your holiday shopping, there is one gift you can't live without (and neither can your friends or family).

The Sephora Ultimate Blockbuster! It's $48 and it makes a great gift for any woman in your life. Pick up a few of these and your shopping is complete until next year (guys, hint hint).

It's 84 eyeshadow shades, five blushes, one powder, SIXTY lip glosses, one lip liner, and one eyeliner. It also comes with applicators, but you don't want to use them as they're not very good.

I use my tapered brow brush and apply shadow as if it's liner (sometimes I apply it wet and other times, if I'm lazy, dry). Depending on my mood, the day, and what I'm wearing, I could have smoky eyes, glowing, golden eyes, or make the blue in my hazel eyes pop out with either purple or blue shadow as liner.

It reminds me of the Elizabeth Arden make-up boxes my great Aunt LaVin bought me when I was a kid. Now I can play dress up every day!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Top 10 Beauty Products

On Thanksgiving, I am very grateful for all of my friends around the country. Therefore, I have asked my good friend Lois to provide her top 10 beauty products to share with you so you are thankful for her, too!

The Top 10 List by Lois, who lives in San Diego now, but is a Canadian transplant:

1. Cargo - The Big Bronzer
There is only one reason for making this my #1 beauty product. It's the best. Down here in SoCal, most women have 24/7/365 perma-tan that I just don't seem to embrace. I love the look of that "glowing" skin, but skin cancer runs in my family and my best friend is a dermatologist, so I'm pretty much a Nicole Kidman when it comes to laying out. But that doesn't mean I have to look pasty white when the temperatures are soaring into the 90's. Instead, I use my Cargo bronzer everywhere. On my cheeks, forehead, and yes, occassionally even my chest. It's safe, looks natural, and gives just enough of that sun-kissed look without all the sparkles.

2. Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer
Incredibly light and protective coverage for the summertime. This is the perfect substitute for foundation. Use it instead of your daily face lotion and you'll get sheer, lightweight coverage, as well as SPF 20 protection. Between this and the Cargo Big Bronzer, you don't need much else!

3. Laura Mercier Foundation Primer
For those special occassions when you want your make-up to stay put and look fresh all night, Laura Mercier Foundation Primer is a must-have. It smooths over even the most obvious blemishes and holds your make-up really well, even in humid considitions. It's also oil-free so that's a bonus for those of us susceptible to breakouts.

4. Chanel Blush
Every girl deserves a splurge every once in a while...and this is definitely mine. I don't usually spend $45 on blush, but this is an exception. I love the quilted pattern on this blush and the little velvet bag it comes in. I know, I know. I'm a sucker for the luxury marketing scheme, but the blush is pretty darn good, too! I've had mine for just more than eight months and I use it almost every day and still have a lot left. The colors they have are classic, so you can use them with everything.

5. Chanel Coco Mademoiselle Eau de Parfum Twist and Spray
We all have a signature scent. Mine happens to be Chanel. I grew up associating good memories with my mom's Chanel No. 5. So when it came time to pick my "signature scent", I beelined for the Chanel counter. I've been using Coco Mademoiselle for about three years now and I never get sick of it. They just recently came out with this great Twish and Spray bottle, though, so I highly recommend that for those of you who travel.

6. Shu Uemura 24K gold eyelash curler
A staple for my everyday look. A good eyelash curler is a necessity for any girl's make-up bag.

7. OPI "Makes Men Blush" or "Tickle My Francy-y" Nail Polish
I love a good classic pink for my nails. I rarely wear any nail polish so, when I do, I like to keep it natural loking. OPI is, by far, the best nail polish around and these two new colors from their Designer line are my favorites. I tend to go darker for my toes, but I change it up so much that I don't really have one color I can point to.

8. Prescriptives Camouflage Cream
This is the best concealer I've ever had. It gives extremely smooth coverage without looking cakey, and it's not too expensive. At first I thought the tube was only going to last a few months, but I had my first tube of this for a year and it just ran out. You aren't supposed to keep foundation longer than a year, anyway, so it was perfect timing! I like to use it under my eyes and around my nose (which, sick or not, always seems to be red!).

9. C.O. Bigelow Lemon Sugar Body Scrub and Bath and Body Works Warm Vanilla Sugar Body Butter

Have you ever had those little bumps on the back of your arms? This is the solution! I only use this when I have to, but it smells awesome and really works well to give your skin a fresh start. If you live in a cold and dry climate (think Canada here), this is a necessity. Just make sure you follow it up with heavy body butter.

10. Softlips Vanilla Chapstick

I always have chapstick with me and Softlips is the best brand. It conditions, has SPF 20, and smells great. It comes in a two-pack, so I keep one in my nightstand and one in my purse. It's not fancy or expensive, but it's the best.

Obviously I have my staple mascara and some fun eyeshadows, too. I like Mary Kay's new compact for when I travel, but other than that, the above list is a pretty good glimpse into my make-up bag and my everyday routine. I try and spend no more than five minutes doing make-up in the morning, so these products are my life-savers to keeping me on schedule.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The Best Mascara

Alright girls! I was going to save this as a surprise for the holidays, but many of you have asked me which mascara I like the best.

I love, love, love the Givenchy Phenomenon Eyes mascara.

The wand isn't shaped like most mascara. See the little ball on the end? It allows you to get the eyelashes on the inner-most part of your eye. I've had more people comment on how long my eyelashes are (including some woman on the street) since wearing this. You will love it. It is worth every penny of the $27.

There is only one downfall...your eyelashes will hit your brow bone before the mascara dries and you have to do a little clean-up between applying it and getting to work. But it's still worth it.

Let me know when you try it and what you think!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

The Air-Brushed Look

Molli says:

"I swear by The Present by Philosophy.

I hate foundation and I don't have the clearest skin. I'm sure most make-up artists would sin me for only using powder. But The Present makes me look like a supermodel. It's more than a primer; it's actually good for your skin and it makes applying make-up fun. It's like when you were a kid applying blush to a Cabbage Patch doll. Move over Gisele!"

Who else has experience with The Present?

Face Shammy

Last Christmas, I got this in my stocking:

You can imagine my curiosity when I pulled it out and turned it over in my hands thinking, "What in the world is this?" My brother saved the day when he announced, "Dummy! It's a face shammy." Excuse me? A face shammy?

That's what it is. Just like you have a shammy for your car, this is for your face. I use it every day instead of a wash cloth. It removes make-up, even waterproof mascara, easily and there is never cleanser residue left on your face. Aveda makes it and it's so inexpensive and COOL that it makes a great stocking stuffer!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Cheek Stain 2

Today we've discussed Benefit Benetint. We think it's too watery. It ends up running down your cheek before you have time to blend it in. Working it in with a sponge doesn't help, either.

Anyone else have thoughts?

Cheek Stain

Who is a fan of cheek stain? I love it. I've always used Tarte cheek stain in Blushing Bride to give my skin that sun-kissed look, even in January in Chicago when your skin hasn't seen the sun in three months and has three more to go.

Today my friend Jill tells me there is something better. She likes the Vincent Longo lip and cheek gel stain. She says it gives you that just run look. What's better than looking like you've been for a run without actually having gone?

What are some other options or are these the best?

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Lancome Defincils

Angela says,

"I use Lancome Defincils and have for ever. It is the best and it is their top selling product (one is sold every five seconds!) I just purchased a blue color because black can tend to make my eyes heavier. I love love love it! It also lasts longer than store bought."

Does anyone else agree?

Lancome Oscillation Mascara

I love mascara. I love how, with one coat, it dramatically changes your eyes. I love that, even if you haven't had eight hours of sleep, a good mascara can help you look well rested.

That's why I always try the latest and greatest mascara.

So when I read about the new Lancome oscillating mascara, I had to try it.

It has a battery-operated wand and it's said to remove the back and forth movement of your wrist while applying mascara.

Wrong! Let's start with the battery-operated button. You have to hold it down while you apply the mascara; there isn't an on/off switch. Not only is it awkward, you tend to get just as much mascara on your face as you do on your eyelashes.

Now let's talk about the mascara itself. It does not open your eyes. It does not remarkably separate. It does not multiply your lashes.

I give the Lancome Oscillation mascara a big thumbs down. Save your $34 for eight Starbucks grande lattes.