Saturday, January 31, 2009

Week of Moisturizers: Twitter Recommendations

We asked our Twitter friends which beauty products they can't live without. Check out their recommendations.

@wtoppert Kinerase Cream. This is my favorite moisturizer of all time! It's pricey, but this stuff is great! It improves the texture and appearance of my skin and it doesn't clog my pores.

@cabbage_babble I can't live without Palmer's Lotion.

@tflynn I like Creme 28 Fruitelia. It's great for exfoliation and has fruit acids. I also love Carolyn Nash. They give free Yonka samples and great facials!

@jasonanthoine For me, I love Anthony Razor Burn Repair. It helps stop razor burn and really works as advertised.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Week of Moisturizers: Clinique vs. Eucerin

Clinique still is a popular beauty product and it's today's recommendation...with a twist. Is it better than Eucerin or should you stick with the drugstore brand?

From Jen: I use the old standby Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion. I have been using it since I started wearing make-up. It is extremely lightweight, adds the perfect amount of moisture, and doesn't bother my overly-sensitive skin.

From Diane: The Clinique Super Rescue Antioxidant Night Moisturizer - Dry Combination, along with All About Eyes is what I started using this winter. Until then, I'd used Eucerin Q10 Anti-Wrinkle Skin Cream and may go back to it. I can't see that the Clinique does anything the Eucerin doesn't do.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Week of Moisturizers: Cetaphil

I received a beauty product recommendation from @wtoppert for this week of moisturizers. She likes Cetaphil Moisturizing Lotion.

She says, "I have dry, sensitive skin, especially in winter months. I've been using Cetaphil since junior high and it is still one of my favorite products. It doesn't irritate my skin, it's inexpensive, and available everywhere."

My mom also uses Cetaphil and has for as long as I can remember. She brags that she hasn't used water on her face since she was 30 and she looks FANTASTIC! One night my husband caught me putting on eye cream and when I said I didn't like the teeny, tiny lines around my eyes he said, "Have you seen your mom? She has GREAT skin!"

So Cetaphil it is! Try the cleanser and the moisturizer.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Week of Moisturizers: Yonka Phyto 54

This is the week of moisturizers and I'm inviting each of you to send me the one you cannot live without. We'll review them, provide your comments, and you'll be the star of all that is beauty-product related for the day!

Either email me, comment here, Facebook me, or DM on Twitter @ginidietrich.

Today's moisturizer review is more about Yonka.

I've learned something about the Yonka Gel doesn't feel as sticky on my face if I use their Phyto 54 instead of my regular moisturizer.

Again, it's really nice and I'm going to guess, if used every day, my face would be super hydrated and youthful.

The fact of the matter is, the cleanser doesn't remove make-up and the phyto 54 has a certain scent that gives me a headache. So I'd have to buy the cleanser, a toner, a make-up remover and a moisturizer.

I think I'll stick with my Dove and super luxurious (details to come later this week) moisturizer. I think I'm still hydrated and look younger than I am. If not, lie to me!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Facial Cleansers

Today's beauty product discussion is around cleansers. I've read conflicting information about cleansers. Some say it doesn't matter what you clean your face with because toner and moisturizer rebalance your skin. Others say it's the most important part of your daily beauty routine.

I don't know which philosophy is true, but I do know I've used several kinds of cleansers. Following are my thoughts on the most recent.

@tanyaflynn brought some Yonka samples to me the other day and I'd forgotten how much I like their stuff! I've used the Gel Nettoyant as a cleanser for the past couple of days and it smells divine and is really nice...if you don't use moisturizer. It feels really heavy on my skin under my moisturizer and it doesn't work as a make-up remover.
Sephora sent a sample of Murad Age Reform Exfoliating Cleanser with one of my online purchases. I actually really like this, but it can only be used twice a week. It needs to be massaged in for a few minutes until you can no longer feel the crystals.
Dove Soap for Sensitive Skin is my old standby when I'm traveling (it doesn't count as a liquid you have to put in a tiny plastic bag) or when I've run out of cleanser at home and haven't had time to get more. I've never noticed a difference between this or an expensive cleanser. If I were to make a recommendation as a non-expert, I would side with those that say the cleanser you use doesn't matter, as long as your skin is clean and the make-up comes off. Go with the Dove and do a twice a week exfoliation.

Friday, January 23, 2009

I Smell Like Coconut!

So you know the Dylan's Candy Bar coconut bon-bon ice cream scrub I gave myself for Christmas? And you know the coconut cream body butter Sephora gave me for being a Beauty Insider?
Well, I used both today and I smell like a fresh coconut. I'm afraid the homeless guy at Starbucks is going to ask if he can have a bite of me, instead of asking for money for his dope habit.

In all actuality, it's a light enough scent that I smell good (I think), but it's not overpowering.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Hotel Palomar

Not only does this hotel have L'Occitane bath products and zebra bathrobes, it has rock star level complimentary items.

Check this out!
  • Resealable plastic travel bags for liquids
  • Fashion tape
  • Humidifier
  • Curling iron
  • Heating pad
  • AND...a straightening iron
That just makes me want to straighten my hair in the morning so I can say I used their complimentary iron.


I am staying at the Hotel Palomar in Washington, D.C. and they have L'Occitane products in the bathroom (I know! Nice place, huh?).

But this reminds me how much I like their products. The only thing I don't like is their verbana shower gel. While it works as well as their other products, it smells like Pledge and I don't really want to smell like I was just dusted.

BUT...if you live in Chicago, rumor has it the L'Occitane store on Armitage is closing and they're having major sales. Go check it out!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Epsom Salt? Huh?

Yesterday's Chicago Tribune had an article Tanya forwarded to me as appropriate for BFF Beauty Bag.

It's titled, "If It Works Well for Heidi Klum" and goes on to say that epsom salt can provide pre- and post-party relief.

Read the article by clicking on the title above. First person to try one of the three ideas gets a prize AND a guest blog here!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Body Lotion

I think I've admitted here that I am ultimately lazy when it comes to getting ready in the morning. If I can cut something out of the routine without it being obvious, I do. That means no body lotion i in the wintertime because no one sees my legs!

But Donna Karan changed that for me when she introduced Cashmere Mist body lotion. I don't like the perfume, but I love the lotion. It's light enough to wear daily and the scent is just enough that I don't have to wear any perfume, but smell good all day.

So I cut the perfume out most days (although two spritzes is easier to apply than lathering on lotion), but you wouldn't know it by smelling me!

It's kind of spendy, but a great gift. I got mine for Christmas!

Saturday, January 17, 2009


I love Sephora! They gave me a birthday gift today - THREE super shimmer lip glosses and coconut cream body butter! I walked away with more gifts than purchases. It is heaven on earth!

Love Your Lashes

The February issue of InStyle has a piece on the right mascara for your eyelashes.

My favorite, Givenchy Phenomenon Eyes, is listed as "best for long, droopy lashes."

The one I hate (I think it's all a marketing ploy to get you to spend $34 on mascara), the Lancome Oscillation mascara is listed as "best for short, straight lashes."

Their other recommendations include best for:
Do you have a favorite mascara not listed here? What type of eyelashes do you have?

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Glowing Skin, Part Two

Yesterday we discussed ways to get glowing skin using makeup in your Ultimate Blockbuster. According to beauty experts, "older complexions can look dull, while youthful ones appear moist and even in texture" so you want skin to glow as you age.

Your makeup can age you:
  • Matte lipstick accentuates age lines
  • Yellow-based bronzer makes skin look sallow
  • Retro eyeliner is cool, but doesn't make you look younger
  • Mascara on your lower lashes can cast undereye shadow
  • Foundation should be applied only where needed because it also accentuates age lines
Avoid these, if possible, and stay hydrated! Glowing skin = youthful-looking skin!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Glowing Skin

It's nine below zero and I've shoveled snow twice today. It's the doldrums of January in Chicago and I need to something to make my skin glow.

Thankfully, InStyle has some advice for me:

1. Use tinted moisturizer with light-reflecting pigments. I prefer not to use foundation or concealer with tinted moisturizer, but they say you can, if you feel you need added coverage.

2. Swirl shimmering rose blush (it's in the Ultimate Blockbuster!) over the apples of your cheeks, then blend it toward the temples. Dust with a soft gold (or bronze for dark skin) highlighter along the cheekbones.

3. Skim a medium brown eyeliner along the inner rim of the lower lash line, then top it with a creamy gold pencil. Highlight the inner corners of the eyes and lids with a gilded powder for a brightening effect.

4. A slick of light pink gloss adds just the right dose of shine and color.

5. Apply two coats of mascara.

Voila! Glowing skin that makes you look like you spent the day at the beach, not climbing over mounds of snow in sub-zero weather.

Monday, January 12, 2009

An Old Standby

I'd forgotten how much I like Bath & Body Works. Patti gave me a vanilla body package for Christmas and I used the shower gel and lotion this morning.


They sell C.O. Bigelow and their own brand is fabulous. How can you go wrong? I mean, it's no Sephora, but the good old Bath & Body Works standby is worth remembering at gift time or when you just need a quick shower gel, bubble bath, or daily lotion.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Smoky Eyes

I love the look of smoky eyes, but I would never take the time to do it as the pros do it. I am not, after all, Keira Knightley. Plus if I spend more than three minutes on my make-up every day, there is something wrong.

I've found a way to create that smoky look without the time commitment.

1. Apply concealer or Benefit Eye Bright to your lash line and curl your eyelashes. I like the shu uemura 24k gold eyelash curler.

2. Using a tapered brow brush and your Ultimate Blockbuster, trace your upper lid with either gray or black. Do this dry, not wet. Then smudge the line with your finger.

3. Clean the brush (I use baby wipes) and press a gunmetal or silver shade into the lower lash line.

4. With a small eyeshadow brush, dab the same gunmetal or silver shade into the corners of your eyes.

5. Swipe a quick dab of powder on your upper eyelids so everything stays put.

This is where I stop if it's just for day. I apply two coats of mascara and then I'm done.

If I'm going out, I continue without the mascara (yet)...

6. Using a medium-sized domed brush, apply inky powder to the crease of your eye and then blend it downward.

Then I pile on the mascara and go with nude or nearly nude lips.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Shampoo and Conditioner

It's not a secret that I love shiny hair. I have spent the last 10 years trying to find the perfect solution in order for me to have shiny hair every day.

I wrote a blog entry a few weeks ago about the Fekkai Three-Minute Mask, which is wonderful and still highly recommend it twice a week if you haven't tried it.

The other day Olivia asked me what kind of shampoo and conditioner I use and asked me to blog about it. It was then that I realized it's the combination of the shampoo, conditioner, and three-minute mask that gives my hair that shiny, healthy glow.

I use Fekkai Glossing Shampoo and Conditioner.

But here's the secret (and some of you already know and do this yourselves)...

Wash and condition your hair every other day. Use the three-minute mask twice a week.

For instance, wash, condition, and mask your hair on Monday. Wash and condition on Wednesday. Wash, condition, and mask on Friday. The in-between days you either put your hair up or use a flat or curling iron.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Dry and Cracked Heels

It works! It really works!

Thanks mom (and Oprah)! The Clearasil, plus Vaseline, plus socks overnight really works.

My feet feel like a baby's butt. I will be happy to let you feel how smooth they are, if you ask very nicely.

Click on the link above to get the direction and information. Try it for yourself. It takes one week before you see a difference. It's expensive and it works!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Benfit Tinted Moisturizer

I love Benefit You Rebel, their tinted moisturizer. It's really dark so it works well in the summertime, but it doesn't work during the winter (unless you live somewhere that is sunny all year long).

So I was really excited when they introduced You Rebel Lite.

I actually mix some with my normal moisturizer (because I have really dry skin) and it works as double duty - a moisturizer with SPF and it evens out my skin tone. I don't wear anything else, including foundation or powder. Plus the color is light enough for every day use, which is not the case with their regular You Rebel.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Sparkly Eyes

I've promised some of you that have the Ultimate Blockbuster (go get yourself one, already!) to provide lessons in applying make-up you wouldn't typically wear. The fun with the Ulimate Blockbuster is you can try all sorts of things without buying new make-up to try it. I'm serious. You will love it, even if you don't wear much make-up. I LOVE MINE (as if you couldn't tell).

So today's, sparkly eyes that work for both day and night. You might have seen this newest trend on Thandie Newton, Jessica Alba, Kate Bosworth, and Charlize Theron (and Gini Dietrich, if you work with me).

Step-by-step directions:
1. Outline your eyes either with concealer or Benefit Eye Bright and gently smudge in with your pinky.

2. Using a shadow brush (even the one that comes with eyeshadow will work), apply gold cream eyeshadow to your upper lids. Just a swipe; it's really just to hold the color so just apply enough that will be covered with eyeliner.

3. Take an angled brush and dip in water and then in brown eyeshadow. Draw a line on your upper lashes, just like you would with an eyeliner pencil. Then dab onto lower lids.

4. Using a soft eyeshadow brush, dab into gold, sparkly eyeshadow and place gently in the corners of your eyes.

5. Apply two coats of mascara.


If you've never used wet eyeshadow as eyeliner, it may take a try or two, but it lasts longer and looks better than eyeliner.

Let me know how you do!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Benefit Eye Bright, Part Two

Thanks, Tammy, for the Benefit Eye Bright recommendation.

Girls, I've been using it the past couple of days, just to see what it's like and if i like it.

Tammy is right. It really opens up your eyes, even after a late night. And I've been wearing it in the corners of my eyes, as well as underneath my eyeliner, instead of concealer. It's a pencil so it's easy to apply and not as messy as concealer.

I give it a big thumbs up!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Nail Polish Touch-Ups

I was very excited when I learned that both Sally Hansen and OPI introduced nail polish sticks.

They're perfect to throw in your bag and easy for touch-ups in the car, in a cab, on the El, on the bus, even on the plane because they make it through security without so much as a glance. They dry quickly so you literally can touch up and go.

The only problem is that they don't have matching regular nail polish. Ideally you'd either get a manicure or paint your nails carefully and then have a matching color in the stick for touch-ups in the middle of the week or while on the road.

That's not the case and the sticks, themselves, aren't good enough quality to paint your nails. So...not a fan yet, but I could be if they decide to market nail polish and sticks together.