Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Going Back to Curly?

Ok, so you might feel like I can't stop talking about Kerastase products and you're right, I can't! I told you I have naturally curly hair that I have been straightening for the past five years. I have been entertaining the thought of going curly again but I need to be educated again on the curly hair products out there. I asked my hair stylist and he told me about Kerastase Oleo-Curl.

I love the other Oleo-Relax products so I thought I would try it. It's a leave-in "Curl Definition Cream for Thick, Curly Hair." It really softened my hair, defined my curls and left me with less frizzy hair which is a huge problem for me. I liked how healthy my hair felt. Am I ready to go back to curly hair? Eh, not yet but the idea is growing on me.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Dove Deodorant for Less Underarm Hair

Per my previous post, you know that I'm currently obsessed with Dove Deodorant. I've been trying the different scents that they offer and am loving their products. Now look at what they have done!

They have created a new product called Dove® Visibly Smooth anti-perspirant/deodorant that is said to have natural extracts that makes new hair grow in finer, making it less noticeable. It also makes the hair softer, so easier to shave. It's available in two different scents: Wild Rose and Natural Fresh. Don't you love the packaging too?

I've been using the Wild Rose for a couple of weeks now. I'm a daily shaver so I am waiting to go a couple of days without shaving to see if I can tell the difference. I'll report back once I have used the deodorant for over a month.

If you've been using it, let us know what you think!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Making the Switch to Dove Deodorant

I never thought I'd be so picky about my deodorant but I went on a quest for a new brand a couple of years ago when I would come home at the end of the day and smell funky. Gross, right? The baby powder fresh scent is pretty darn disgusting after a full day at work and time at the gym. Believe me, I wasn't so "fresh" smelling. So I decided to try Dove. I used their soap so maybe I'd like their deodorant?

I tried their Go Fresh Cucumber & Green Tea Scent deodorant. It was part of their "Cool Essentials" line and promised me 24-hour protection from odor and wetness. I wasn't completely sold because, really, don't they all say that? Tried it and I did not smell at the end of my work day and even after some intense workouts, I still smelled good!

My latest obsession is Dove's Energizing Grapefruit and Lemongrass Scent. It smells even better than the green tea version. Now it's my new favorite.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Tip for a Perfect Blowout: Kerastase Ciment Thermique

In the past 10 years, I've tried every relaxer and straightener. I've even spent a ton of money on permanently straightening my hair with the Japanese straightening process, Yuko and most recently the Brazilian Keratin Treatment. Needless to say, my hair is dry and damaged but I refuse to give up my straight hair. One of the few products that has really protected my hair, kept it silky and minimized split ends is Kerastase's CIMENT THERMIQUE. It uses a Vita-Topseal that protects and reinforces external layer.

This is a great product if you're worried about using heat-styling tools on your already damaged hair. Just apply a quarter-sized amount (sometimes I use two) to wet hair and don't rinse. I start underneath the back of my head and focus on the ends of my hair. Since I need double duty on my damaged hair, I use it with the Oleo-Relax serum I talked about in a previous post. I blow dry, flat iron and my hair is silky smooth. A crucial product for the perfect blowout. It's worth the $34 and is one of the best smelling hair products I own.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

O.P.I. and Mrs. O'Leary's BBQ

I've always been able to get away with not getting pedicures. I have been painting my own toenails for years and people always ask, "Oh, where did you get your pedicure?" Don't get me wrong, I would love to be pampered and get a foot rub but I don't always have the patience or the time to sit and wait for the polish to dry.

I'd like to take all the credit but I believe it's all about the nail polish you use. I've been using O.P.I. nail polish. I vary between a couple of colors but mostly stick to some classic colors such as: Mrs. O'Leary's BBQ and Kennebunk Port.

I ran a 30 hour relay race last weekend which wrecked havoc on my feet. But somehow it still looks like I just got a pedicure. I was too exhausted to notice but the boyfriend noticed and my toes were nowhere near a football game or a case of beer. Need I say more?

Sunday, April 26, 2009

The Magic of Kerastase

My hair stylist introduced me to Kerastase products 5 years ago and I've been hooked ever since. I have very thick, curly, dry and frizzy hair. As anyone with crazy hair like mine can tell you, the search for a product that can tame the frizzies and the volume is never-ending. Kerastase Nutritive Serum Oléo-Relax calms dry, frizzy, unmanageable hair. It has essential oils that relax my hair and leaves it smooth and shiny.

I use it on my hair when it’s wet and dry. I use two pumps before I blow-dry and flatiron to help protect it from any damage from the heat. I use one pump after to give it a little bit more moisture and smooth the flyaways. It's a bit pricey but completely worth it - one bottle lasts me over 6 months and I have a ton of hair!

The Perfect Blush?

Guest blog by Lois Arbogast

Every girl deserves a beauty product splurge every once in a while...and Chanel blush is definitely mine.

I don't usually spend $45 on make-up, 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 it's so worth it!

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.

Editor's note: This blush is perfect for getting the Ashley Greene look we described yesterday. Of course, if you have the Ultimate Blockbuster, the blushes in there work, too.

Get the Look: Ashley Greene

Last Friday night, late, my sister-in-law sent me this photo of Ashley Greene and asked how she can get that look. I guess after the kids went to bed she was browsing fashion magazines! I told her to buy some individual false eyelashes and that I would show her how when I see her next.

But then I thought, wait! This is a great blog tip. So if you want to get this look, following is how to do it.

1. Buy individual false eyelashes and make sure you have really good tweezers.

2. Prep your face - if you wear foundation or tinted moisturizer, get it the way you like.

3. Use serum (I like clear mascara) to shape your eyebrows and fill in with either a brow pencil or a tapered brush dipped in eyeshadow that is a shade darker than your hair color.

4. Swirl your favorite blush on the apples of your cheeks and apply a clear or light lipgloss.

5. Using your tweezers, apply individual lashes in the corner of your upper lid. Then fill in alternately through the middle. Do this until you feel like you have enough and it's not overpowering. Do the same with your lower lash line, but be careful - you don't want to apply many here. Let the glue dry.

6. Using a tapered brush, dip it in water and then in an eyeshadow of your choice (I would probably use brown or violet black). Draw a line from the corner of your eye, getting thicker as you move to the outside of your eye. Repeat on the other eye.

7. Apply mascara.

Viola! Send me pictures so I can see how you look!

Reversing Damaged Hair?

A couple of weeks ago, Daily Candy had a story about a new hair therapy, claiming it can reverse damaged hair. The offer was a free four-week kit if I paid for shipping. Duh...sign me up!

The Kronos package just arrived and it includes shampoo, conditioner, detangler, and overnight repair masque.

The brand promise is that it's clinically proven to address all signs of aging hair if I use it consistently for four weeks. I'm going to begin with the overnight repair masque tonight and will use it consistently through May 26. Check back here on May 27 to see if it's worth the $55 for you to buy the discovery kit.

Until then, you, too, can try it free! Register online here. But beware, unless you return the unused product that didn't work, they'll bill you every 60 days and send you more.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Does BareMinerals Provide Flawless Coverage?

Guest blog written by @CandiceStone

What's not to like about make-up so pure you can sleep in it! But seriously, being able to sleep in it is not one of my key requirements of a beauty product (editor's note - it is one of mine!).

What IS important to me is a product naturally free of the dreaded chemicals everyone is trying to avoid these days and the ability to reduce the appearance of my fine lines and wrinkles.

I have been using Revlon's New Complexion One-Step Compact Make-Up with SPF 15 for about 20 years, but as I approach 40, I have been finding that it emphasizes the age lines appearing around my eyes and mouth. It also doesn't hide my uneven skin tone and a couple of age spots.

A friend recommended I try BareMinerals because it is 100% naturally made with crushed minerals from the earth.

After a trip to ULTA in La Jolla to pick up the BareMinerals Starter Kit, I tried it and have to say that the "flawless coverage" they promise it pretty close to actually being flawless. Best of all, it really does feel like you are not wearing any make-up at all and I don't end the day with skin-toned fingerprints on everything I've touched that day.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Eyeliner No Longer Needed!

If you missed buying the Sephora Ultimate Blockbuster (they no longer carry it), the second best beauty product staple is the Sephora Deluxe Palette - Collector's Edition.

It's 20 eyeshadow shades, two blushes, two powders, and 24 lip glosses. 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!

Trust me on this. Spend the money. It's worth it.

A Wise Investment: A Mason Pearson Brush

Back in the day, when I was working with Purebeauty, they introduced me to the Mason Pearson brush. Since then, I've coveted one, but never wanted to spend the money on it... hoping, instead, I would receive it as a gift.

Five years went by and I still hadn't received the beautiful handmade brush as a I gifted it to myself.

I'll be honest, I spent three or four months trying to figure out what the big deal is. I have really thick hair, but each strand is fine. So it's hard to find brushes that get my hair to cooperate, let alone get the tangles out.

But then...the big deal was revealed. This brush is an investment and worth every single penny that it costs. It makes my hair glossy, it does get out the tangles, and, oh, it makes my hair shiny...without product.

New Cleansing Soap

Some of you know I love Twitter. I mean, it's a complete obsession. So it shouldn't come as a surprise to you that I met @sibu_beauty out there.

Sibu Beauty is an all-natural, Sea Buckthorn based beauty product system delivering beautiful skin, hair, and nails from inside-out and outside-in. AND they're based in Salt Lake City (my hometown) so when they asked for blog reviewers, I volunteered!

They tell me Sea Buckthorn contains estradiol (a natural hormone), catechol (an enzyme that is anti-cancer), and serotonin (a vital chemical found in the brain). The catechol caught my attention because I got some feedback that Aquaphor used as eye cream causes cancer. So if I use Sibu soap and Aquaphor at night, I won't have wrinkles OR get cancer.

They actually sent me four different products, but I've tried only the cleansing soap so far (stay tuned for additional reviews). I have always used Dove to clean my face so this was something a little daring for me to try.

I've not had a single breakout since I started using it and it smells really good. The only problem is that it doesn't remove make-up, no matter how hard I try. You have to make sure all of the make-up is removed (no traces at all) before you wash your face with it. But it complements my moisturizer so I'm willing to go the extra step to use a make-up remover before I shower.

It's definitely worth $5.95!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Healing Benefits of a Massage!

I’m always looking for the one product that is going to make me look miraculously 10 years younger with limited amount of effort. Mostly because I want to look young again, of course, but also because I’m living my life at such a fast pace that I don’t have time to waste!

A week ago I got a huge reminder of what really could keep me looking young and feeling young. A friend of mine had to basically force me to get a massage. I literally thought I didn’t have an hour to “waste” on a massage. As soon as the words came out, I couldn’t believe I had said it. I had always been a huge proponent of making sure people took care of themselves, relaxed and minimized stress and realized I had a huge problem doing it myself.

Although I fell asleep for half of the massage, it was a huge reminder to slow down. I woke up and looked at how soft and relaxed my face looked. I had an hour free of stress and true relaxation which I believe is truly the key to younger looking skin. If only I could hire a masseuse to come to my house every day or follow me around at work.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Want to Look Like a Model?

Guest blog written by Molli Megasko

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!"

Monday, April 13, 2009

The Love Handler: Does It Work?

Six weeks ago I received a nice little package from @BlissSpa and in it was a free bottle of The Love Handler.

I wrote here that I would try the beauty product daily for six weeks and report back.


It does not work. Granted, I'm a cynic in whether or not a cream would actually help tighten your skin and I'm probably not their target audience, but it does not work.

It smells good. It feels tingly. But it is not the cure for lazy abdominals. It does not whittle your wiggly waist, tone your tummy pudge, or keep back fat at bay.

You know what does?

Sit ups.

Try that instead.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

It's Time for Bronzers!

Guest blog written by Lois Arbogast (@loisatvistage)

There is only one reason for making this my #1 beauty product. It's the best.

own 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 tha
t 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, occasionally even my chest. It's safe, looks natural, and gives just enough of that sun-kissed look without all the sparkles.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Want Shiny Hair? Advice for Two Products Here!

Guest blog written by Molli Megasko (@mollimegasko)

When choosing a hair gloss for my thin, over-bleached hair, I am more than picky. I've tried them before and they always weigh down my hair and make it look dirty. I've been using beauty products such as Bed Head's Superficial spray gloss for the past few years, which to me is like a classic movie - you watch it when nothing else is on. But I'm looking for something with a little more drama.

I can't wash my hair every day because it dries out my ends, so I need to find a gloss that would not make my hair look greasy or oily.

When the saleslady told me that Frederic Fekkai Salon Glaze Clear Shine Rinse was just what I needed, I jumped on board!

I've been using the gloss in the shower every time I wash my hair (every other day) for a little more than a week now, and I do see a difference. It's not a huge difference; people are not coming up to me, asking me how I got my hair so shiny. But there is a difference.

My wispies (baby bangs, as I call them) and my fly-aways are not as out of control as usual! It does make the roots feel thicker when blow drying. It doesn't weigh it down at all and provides a nice, subtle shine.

Would I recommend the product? Sure. But I'm always up for new suggestions on hair shine.

*Editor's Note: I have very thick, straight hair and have been using Frederic Fekkai Three-Minute Mask twice a week for nearly a year. My hair is healthy, strong, and shiny...and strangers do ask me what I use for the shine. But the saleslady at Sephora told Molli the mask would be too heavy for her hair.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant

I have sensitive combination skin so I’ve never been able to find an exfoliant that wasn’t too harsh or didn’t make me feel like I was rubbing a handful of rocks on my face. They would eventually turn my face red or make me break out. I desperately wanted my skin to feel extra soft, smooth and refreshed. And I loved the feeling of washing away that layer of dead cells that is necessary to achieve a healthy glow. That is exactly what Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant ($49) does. My healthy glow may not be apparent ALL the time but I do promise it makes your skin feel oh so good.

You add water to this fine, rice-powder substance to make a non-abrasive scrub/paste. You feel the tiny granules enough so you know it’s effective but gentle enough to not irritate your skin. And it's loaded with good-for-you ingredients like grapefruit, which brightens skin, and green tea to soothe.

The only downside is that the bottle is like a salt shaker so if the holes are exposed to too much moisture then

the bottle may clog up. I have had my bottle over a year though and still works great.

The best part is that when they say you can use it daily, they really mean it. It’s like getting a mini-facial every day. No wonder it won InStyle’s Best Beauty Buy award.

Wake Up Beautiful Without Doing Your Hair

My sister-in-law has naturally curly hair that she washes at night, piles on top of her head, and wakes up beautiful every morning. I've always been pretty envious of that. My hair is really thick (therefore, lots of layers) and stick straight so I didn't think it would work for me.

But in the April issue of InStyle, they claim you can go to bed with wet hair, no matter the type, you'll wake up beautiful.

They recommend finding your inner ballerina by piling your hair into a twist on the top of your head and to use a scrunchie to avoid crimping.

Well, I don't own a scrunchie (didn't they go out of style in the 80s?). So I asked Angela what she uses and she said, "A cheap barrette I bought at Walgreens."

I have to use a cheat barrette and lots of bobby pins, but this is how the experiment has worked:

1. Monday morning I woke up with waves, but had to rewash my bangs and run a curling iron through my hair. I think it's because I did a deep condition on Sunday night.

2. Tuesday morning I woke up in all sorts of disarray and had to pull it back. I did not wash it (only wet it down under the faucet) and I did not use product.

3. Wednesday morning I was fed up and just did it normally.

4. Last night I took a shower before bed, but I did not wash my hair. I just made sure it was super soaked through. Then I added some product and piled it all on top of my head, including my bangs.

This morning I woke up and my hair was still a bit damp. But I ran the hair dryer through it quickly and used a comb instead of a brush. I had one little spot that was sticking up that I couldn't control so I just pulled pieces of my hair at the crown back into bobby pins. I even have a nice little wave in my bangs. It took my 20 minutes to get ready this morning.

I think I'm sold.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Dior Mascara

Everyone knows I love my mascara. I mean LOVE MY MASCARA. I think you all also know that my all-time favorite is Givenchy Phenomenon Eyes ($28). It's my favorite because it works for all types of eyelashes and works especially well on the tiny lashes closest to the corner of your eyes.

That being said, I just bought some Dior Black Out ($24) on a recommendation from @spoiledpretty.

You know that trick I showed you? The one wear you apply mascara to the tops of your eyelashes and then fill in the empty spots (see it here)? The Dior is PERFECT for this trick!

It's worth throwing into your mascara rotation. I try a new one every three or four times. I'll be back to the Givenchy in six weeks.

Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer

I live in Chicago so the real sun time I'm going to get each year is about three months. Not a lot of time, plus it's bad for my skin. So I'm always looked for beauty products that don't make me look pasty white, even in the dead of winter. I also hate foundation and wouldn't wear it, even if I had really bad skin.

That's why I love Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer. It's sheer and very lightweight. It provides just enough color that my face glows. Plus it contains SPF 20 so I wear it over my moisturizer and get double the coverage.

The look of sun-kissed skin without the fine lines and sun spots!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Two Ways to Wake Up Beautiful

I'm combining two of the 10 ways InStyle suggests to wake up beautiful because they don't require a beauty product and they're habits you can begin tonight!

Sleep on your back. "Note to Audrey Hepburn fans: Lying on your stomach is bad for beauty sleep. The average head weighs seven to eight pounds - a lot of pressure to be putting on your face every night. In fact, many dermatologists say they can tell what side of the face people sleep on by the number of wrinkles there."

Get a lift. "Sleep with your head elevated on two pillows, or put the headrest area of your bed on two- to four-inch pieces of wood. Gravity helps lymph and blood flow so fluid won't accumulate."

I actually have done both of these pretty much my entire life so I can't tell you if there is some miraculous change once you start, but, hey! It's worth a shot for less wrinkles, right??

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Aquaphor: Multi-Purpose

In the April issue of InStyle, there is a section on the 10 ways to wake up beautiful. We're going to try all 10 ways and report back on our findings.

The first one we've tried is actually number four on the list: Save money, not wrinkles. They say...

At night you don't need to worry about eye treatments smearing your make-up, so slather on the richest formula you can find. Aquaphor conditions the lashes and hydrates the delicate eye skin really well.

I started using Aquaphor about eight years ago when I ran my first marathon. I used it to prevent chafing in the places you don't want chafing, but also on my lips because they dry out really quickly during any kind of outdoor exercise.

Then I realized it had more uses when I burned myself on a hot pan and it soothed the searing feeling. It also is great for cuts and scrapes and any kind of dry skin.

So I tried it on my eyes (which also means I am now washing my face at night). It is WONDERFUL! You definitely don't want to wear it during the day, but to sleep in? InStyle is right. It's one way to wake up beautiful.

You can get it at the drugstore, it's cheap, and it comes in a variety of sizes. I have the tub in my bathroom, I carry a tube in my purse, and I have a lipgloss-sized tube for my lips.

Monday, March 23, 2009

L’Oreal’s Wrinkle De-Crease Collagen Filler

Guest blog written by Candice Stone (@CandiceStone)

My first fine lines around my eyes arrived along with my 35th birthday a few years ago and since then I have tried a whole host of products that claim to help reduce fine lines and wrinkles.

I used Strivectin MD when it was touted as the new wonder treatment. Wonder treatment? Not really, but it does help – the only downside is the high price tag. (*Editor's note: This is our favorite eye cream).

I then tried Alpha Hydrox products after hearing from Dr Oz on Oprah that Alpha Hydroxy Acids are one of the few things that really work to support aging skin. I didn’t find that at all.

Finally I tried L’Oreal’s Wrinkle De-Crease Collagen Filler which you can get at the local drugstore or supermarket for less than $20. L’Oreal claims the Collagen Bio-Spheres in the product expand on contact with the water found naturally in the skin to fill fine lines and wrinkles immediately – I have certainly found that there is an immediate noticeable improvement.

They also claim that you will continue to see improvements over time with continued use and again I have found this to be true. I apply it at night after washing and again in the morning under make-up to take advantage of the ‘immediate plumping & filling’. No sensitivity or break-outs with using the product either.

Why pay more than $100 for a beauty product when a sub-$20 dollar product works so well! My only concern is that I have been trying to move towards only natural products in my beauty bag and this does not fit the bill – however, until I find something natural that works as well I am not prepared to give the lines and wrinkles an inch!

Friday, March 20, 2009

A Paraben-Free Anti-Aging Eye Treatment

Guest blog written by Vicki Zerbee (@vickizerbee)

Before I found my favorite eye treatment, I had flaky skin under my eyes that was hard to look at and hard to cover. It was worse in the winter, but I would have it year-round. Any attempt at concealing the flakes on this tender skin around the eyes resulted in a messy, and even more unflattering, look.

I also had the same fine lines and wrinkles under and around my eyes that all women get as they age, and they are no fun either. I was looking for a product that was safe, natural, and would be effective at making my eyes look healthy and younger.

I found a paraben-free, hypoallergenic, ophthalmologist-tested formula that contains anti-aging botanicals and vitamin C, to help fine lines and wrinkles disappear. Enfuselle Eye Treatment has been clinically proven to decrease the appearance of skin wrinkles more than 200 percent in as little as two weeks. It also decreases visible fine lines and increases skin resilience and firmness.

I have not had flakes of any kind under my eyes since I started using this eye treatment and I can't tell you how happy that makes me. When I tell my story, women can relate to it because many of them have issues with their eyes and are looking for solutions.

I will use this eye treatment forever!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Dermalogica: The Cure for Combination Skin

I have been searching for the right face wash for as long as I remember. I have been blessed with combination skin. By being blessed I really mean born with a big fat curse and I blame my Italian mother. Although face washes promised to moisturize the dry patches and remove oil from my T-zone areas, I would end up with one cheek being dry, my forehead still being oily or a little blemish on my nose.

Until I was introduced to the Dermalogica Special Cleansing Gel. Its part of a skin care system researched and developed by the International Dermal Institute. It promised me it would “wash away impurities without stripping or drying” and it did! It’s soap-free, fragrance-free, my face is never too dry and I have had minimal “impurities” ever since.

They have also developed an online Face MappingSM skin analysis that analyzes your skin and provides recommendations on what your face needs. Pretty cool!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

I Found the Perfect Eyecream!

I received a little Beauty Insider gift from Sephora last week. It's a nice big tube of StriVectin-SD Eye Cream.

You know I've been looking for an eye cream and this is it! It's formulated to help to significantly improve the appearance of fine lines. Apparently it aids in the build-up of collagen, which I didn't realize happened except when you wanted lips like Angelina Jolie.

Those "wrinkles" my husband told me he loves are gone. Pair that with the new trendy braids in your hair look and I'm back to looking like I'm in my 20s!

Monday, March 16, 2009

The Taste of Her Cherry Chapstick!

And here's the cherry chapstick version. Didn't we all feel sassy when we were in high school and our lips were tinted red from our fancy chapstick. Tastes good, feels good and smells good. What more can I say? Katy Perry famously talks about "The taste of her cherry chapstick!"

The new and improved version now has SPF 4! Oh, and there is a strawberry flavor but it's definitely not as tasty.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

H20 Almond Body Lotion

Not really sure how I overlooked the most important beauty product I use every day...perhaps because it sits on my desk and I apply it multiple times each day without thinking about it?

I love, love, love the H2O almond body lotion.

Growing up in the mountains has given me chronic dry skin. This lotion has shea butter in it, along with a little glitter, that leaves my hand soft. Plus, it smells like almonds, which is just a perfect and light scent for my hands that doesn't overwhelm the perfume I've chosen for the day.

It comes in an easy-to-use pump so it sits on my desk all day and I go back to it all day long.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

It's Medicated!

It's medicated! Yes, I'm still talking about chapstick. It's an addiction!! How can you talk about lip balm and not talk about the original Chapstick? Didn’t we all have the original or Cherry version when we were growing up?

I happen to be obsessed with the Medicated version. Like the package says it does heal severely chapped lips but also keeps lips protected especially in the winter.

My favorite part is the fact that it makes your lips tingle about two seconds after it is applied. Wear it under lip gloss or lipstick and your lips will be soft and supple all day long. My other favorite part is that it's inexpensive so I can buy 5 at a time and keep them for my "emergency" situations.

Buy it at your local drugstore or online at Honestly, I think you can buy this at the gas station!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Blood Orange and White Pepper

No it's not what I had for brunch today. It's a fairly new beauty product line from Bliss. I originally had a sample of the new scented body butter from Sephora. So when @BlissSpa offered 20% off to her Twitter followers, I thought I'd try it.

I ordered the "bounty" set, which is a sugar scrub, bath and shower gel, and body butter.

They say the scent was inspired by a cocktail their scent specialist sipped. It's an "energizing citrus scent that blends bright blood orange and spicy white pepper with nuances of coriander and white musk."

I like it! Bliss products are all great so if you don't like how this smells, try one of their other scrubs, gels, or butters.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

OPI Spring Colors

I took my nieces to get manis and pedis last weekend and the salon had the new OPI South Beach Collection.

Although it's still cold in Chicago, it was 60 degrees in Denver so I felt my winter colors could take a break and I would try a spring color.

I chose Overexposed in South Beach, which is a vivid purple that can't get enough attention.

I love, love, love it! It's not an eggplant purple, but a nice dark color that also has that spring-like feel.

The entire collection includes:
  • Miami Beat
  • Done Out in Deco
  • Suzi and the Lifeguard
  • Party In My Cabana
  • Conga-Line Coral
  • OPI on Collins Ave.
  • Paint My Moji-Toes Red
  • Feelin' Hot, Hot, Hot!
  • Sand In My Suit
  • Clubbing Til Surise
  • Bronzed to Perfection
Check it out soon!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

The Love Handler

On Twitter a few days ago @BlissSpa offered a 20% coupon plus a free Love Handler for any beauty products bought online. You know I was all over that!

I received my box the night before last (more to come on what I bought) and I pulled out the Love Handler. I had no idea what this was and now I'm intrigued.

It is a liquid workout for lazy abdominals. I'm not making this up.

It is supposed to stimulate skin surface for improved firmness and contour, whittle your waist, toney tummy pudge, and keep back fat bay.

I'm seriously not making this up.

So I tried it. It feels like lip plumper on my skin. It's smells minty and stays tingly for about an hour. My husband thinks I should try it only on one side of my tummy to see if there truly is a difference. I'm ignoring him and trying it on my full tummy.

They say it takes six weeks to see a difference. Check back here on April 13 for results.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Addiction to Lip Balm


I’m obsessed with lip balm. I probably have ten different places at home where I have a stash. A bit of an addiction I guess. In a coffee table drawer, my nightstand, behind my bathroom sink mirror, winter coat pockets and almost every purse I own and even in a kitchen drawer. You never know when there is going to be an emergency! Nothing bothers me more than having chapped lips and then not having lip balm. That’s what I call an emergency.

I love all kinds really. But one of my favorites is Smith’s Rosebud Salve. It’s been around since the late 1800’s and can be used for any dry spot on your body…dry elbows, cuticles even for burns. I’ve heard people even talk about putting it on babies bums but I really don’t want to go there! The Rosebud Salve comes in a cute tin, is easy to apply and makes it seem like you just put some fancy lip gloss on. You can find it at Sephora and is a must have for celebrities like Katherine Keigl and Eva Longoria!

New My BFF's Beauty Bag Blogger

Hey everyone! Welcome Angelica as our new blogger! She and I are partnering to bring you the very best in beauty products.

Stay tuned for more to come...

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Who Has Fabulous Lashes?

Did anyone try the Spoiled Pretty trick for creating fabulous eyelashes?

If you missed it, check My BFF's Beauty Bag from Feb. 18 or click on the video directly from here.

I tried it with my ridiculously favorite mascara, Givenchy Phenomenon Eyes, but it didn't work because the wand is a little ball. So I tried it with a regular wanded mascara and IT WORKS!

It took a couple of tries (yesterday and today), but the technique is easy to perfect and you'll be surprised at the results.

Try it!

And...thanks again @spoiledpretty!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Laura Mercier Eye Pencil

Even though I'm a beauty product junkie, I don't wear much make-up. We all know I love my Sephora Ultimate Blockbuster, but it's not ideal for travel.

For travel, I throw in my teeny, tiny Ziploc bag, a Laura Mercier eye pencil in black violet. I like the black violet, instead of brown or black, because it highlights my hazel eyes differently than the more standard colors. I recommend trying it. Big fan.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Water Hurting Your Face?

At dinner last night, Jessica told me she loves living in Florida, but that the water is killing her face. Having experienced that same thing when I lived in Kansas City, I offered her my best beauty product advice:


But, she says, I have to shower.

Yes, but you can shower without immersing your face in the water.

I've blogged about this before, but it's worth mentioning again. Use Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser. You can apply it with cotton pads and remove it the same way. No water necessary.

My mom swears by it - says she hasn't used water on her face since she was 30. I stopped using it when I moved to Chicago and realized I was no longer allergic to the water.

Do you have other non-water cleanser recommendations?

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Secret to Fabulous Lashes

Most of you know by now I am a mascara snob (if you didn't know that, read yesterday's post) and am always looking for new techniques and new beauty products to make my naturally long (but very light) eyelashes even longer.

Imagine my surprise when I saw a video yesterday Spoiled Pretty on applying mascara to the tops of your lashes to make them look even longer. I was intrigued!

Watch the video here, try it in the morning, and let me know what you think! I'll do the same..., but with my fave mascara, Givenchy Phenomenon Eyes, and not that crappy L'Oreal tubes stuff.

And...thanks @spoiledpretty!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Review of L'Oreal Double Extension Beauty Tubes

I was going to wait to do a review on the new L'Oreal Double Extension Beauty Tubes until I'd used the mascara for a month, but I can't take it any longer.

I hate, hate, hate, hate, hate this beauty product! Everyone knows I love my mascara, but this is not a good one. At all.

Let's start with the first application. It's white and is supposed to nourish and strengthen your lashes. Okay, I'm willing to apply mascara in two steps, if it works. But the first step clumps and I've not yet been able to get my lashes to separate by using it.

The second step is the mascara, and this is where the tubes extend your eyelashes. As I sat at breakfast with @LoisAtVistage this morning, I could feel my eyelashes hit my eyebrows and it made me feel like they were jumping off my face like two ugly spiders!

Now I'm going to admit that I am a bad person. I never wash my face at night. Partly because I'm lazy and partly because my skin is really dry and washing it twice a day really dries it out. So when I washed my face the day after I tried the mascara for the first time, I thought my eyelashes were falling out. There are actual tubes that come off with soap and water.


Lastly, the brushes are on the wrong side of the tube so you have to get used to applying it differently.

I have nothing good to say about this beauty product. Don't waste your money on this one.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Beauty Web Site Recommendation

Today I have a favor to ask. Check out a beauty product Web site and let me know what you think.

Glimmer. Gloss. Glow.

My friend @ForeverApril writes the content and has the same philosophy I have - don't recommend a product you haven't tried yourself.

Comment here and let me know what you think. I'd love to get her some feedback she can use.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

I Swear I'm Over Jo Malone After This Post!

Apparently Jo Malone has beauty products for everyone!

When I posted the link to the hand cream blog to my Facebook items, my friend Cory commented and said...

Jo Malone has amazing men's fragrance too! Seriously, the "Fig" scent is what I wore all through college and got numerous compliments on it! It's awesome because it's a lower alcohol content (I have sensitive skin) and the scent notes are different and people notice it. It's the "Wild Fig & Cassis" cologne. It smells "old man-ish" when you first experience it, but then you notice the subtle notes and it become like an addiction! I bought it back in London and when i came state-side everyone wants to know why I smell so nice!!!

So now you have gifts to buy your men, too!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Jo Malone Hand Treatment

Guest blog written by @angelica7641

I never used hand cream. I always hated the oily feeling it left. In fact, I used to wash my hands after I applied my body lotion because I disliked the feeling so much or I would only apply it to the top of my hands. Ridiculous, right?

Then @annagabbert introduced me to Jo Malone's hand treatment. She assured me it wasn’t greasy and she was right! It was creamy and light and smelled amazing. I wasn’t sure what the smell actually was but I found out it’s a hint of pomelo (the largest citrus fruit there is) and cassis. It’s a subtle, rich and sweet scent that lasts for hours.

You can get it at Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf or Nordstrom. Just a little of the lotion goes a long way!

P.S. @joyfulbathco - You might want to add this to your shipment!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Jo Malone

How many of you have Jo Malone among your beauty product staples? If you don't, you should.

I was introduced to her perfume by a friend who said, "I think you would like Jo Malone. Check it." So I did.

The thing I like about the perfume is there is something for everyone. There are spicy, citrus, fruity, light green floral, floral, and woody scents. Among the scented groups are another 20 "flavors."

My favorite is nectarine blossom and honey, which I wear almost daily. It comes in both a 30 ml and a 100 ml. The 30 ml is small enough to fit in your Ziploc bag while you travel.

The best part, though? You can mix scents for something that is all your own. And if you happen upon a store that sells it (I've only ever seen it at Sak's and at the Jo Malone store at the Wynn in Vegas), they will give you lots of little samples to try mixing at home.

One more thing...@angelica7641 says the hand cream is to die for, as well.

Jo Malone. Check it!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Sephora Celebrates Birthdays

I love that Sephora sends beauty products to their Beauty Insiders on their birthdays.

This year's gift is a set of three lipglosses, which I LOVE. I am a lipgloss junkie, as you know, so this makes me very, very happy!

If you're not already a Beauty Insider, join today (it's free) and you'll get a nice little gift in your mailbox on your birthday.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Sugar! Sugar!

On Saturday, I saw Torrie pull her beauty product bag out of her purse. She searched for a lipgloss and then pulled out a brown tube and I realized we haven't talked about Sugar yet!

Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment has SPF 15 and is fantastic for making your lips soft. I don't like it, however, for use during the day. I prefer C.O. Bigelow mint or Buxom Lips because they're minty and tingly and they have a bit of color that is great for running to a meeting, without having to apply lipstick.

But use your sugar lip treatment right before you go to bed and you wake up the next morning with soft, kissable lips.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Which Eye Creams Do You Use?

One beauty product I was never concerned with is eye cream. Until, a few weeks ago, my husband innocently said, "I love your wrinkles."


I have wrinkles AND you love them??

Resisting the urge to run out and get botox at lunch, I perused the eye creams at Walgreen's.

I bought Oil of Olay eye cream and have been using it underneath my PerriconeMD moisturizer (which, as we now know, claims to reduce fine lines...not WRINKLES!).

I need some eye cream experts...desperately!
Which eye creams do you use?

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Week of Moisturizers: PerriconeMD

Yesterday we discussed the beauty product I travel with. Today is the daily moisturizer that I cannot live without.

My skin is overtly dry. I don't know if it's from growing up in the mountains or if it's hereditary, but every time I have a facial, I hear, "Your skin is really dry. You should drink more water." Well folks, I drink at least 10 glasses of water every day. So that's not what it is.

And then I found PerriconeMD Face Finishing Moisturizer. It came as a sample with my Beauty Insider from Sephora.

It claims to minimize the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles while providing antioxidant protection. It also says it helps firm skin and give it a dewy, radiant look.

I should have taken a photo of my face when I started using it and one now to see if that's true. What I do know is that I haven't broken out in more than two months and that my face feels thousands of times better.

The only problem? No SPF in it. But I use Rebel Lite over it every morning, which has SPF 15. I think, in this case, I can have my cake and eat it too.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Week of Moisturizers: Hope In A Jar

I have an old stand-by beauty product that I travel with because it's easy to find in less than three ounces and fits nicely in my teeny, tiny plastic bag that is supposed to hold all of my "make me pretty" secrets as I go through security.

The Philosophy Hope In A Jar claims to have been created for the medical market and "is a world-renowned skin cream. For years, plastic surgeons have been recommending this formula to patients in pursuit of younger, healthier skin. Results can be seen, and felt, within days. A healthy, rosy glow to the skin that doesn't require make-up or cover up."

Now, I don't know about all of that. What I do know is my skin is rosy (but that might be due to three days of skiing), but I think it's called Hope In A Jar because we all secretly hope it does what it says. I don't use it every day so I can't tell you if it gives me younger, healthier skin, but I do like it for traveling purposes.