Feb 27, 2011

In like a lion...

After a long, looooong winter, we're fast approaching Spring 2011. For me that means brights, lights, and even possibly a little neon. This is the time of year I want a flush of color, and we are all compelled to mimic the flowers in bloom. Even Dooney & Burke has released their Spring collection and it's a pretty floral pattern that would look lovely on any arm.

Here are some of my Spring picks in makeup for the upcoming season:

NARS nail polish in Schiap, a very wearable hot pink. A universally flattering shade that can take you right into summer. I have yet to try on the matching lipstick, which no doubt would be excellent for spring as well. This definitely falls into the fluro/neon category (but less shocking than Essie's Short Shorts from 2009 I believe).

MAC Wonder Woman powder blush in Mighty Aphrodite. I snagged this duo blush in this gorgeous blue compact when this limited edition collection was released early this month. One side is a beautiful pinky coral shade and the other is a more coral gold shade. Since this was a limited edition color, may I suggest Desire blush by NARS.

DIOR Addict Ultra Gloss in Pink Veil #654. From their spring collection, this is a gorgeous watermelon shade. These lip glosses have staying power, they don't smell weird, and they're not overly sticky. They also have fantastic reflective properties without big chunks of glitter.

Nail polishes:
OPI for Sephora in Let's Plie, a metallic beige. Perfect for those who shy away from anything too bold.
Essie Nail Polish in Nice is Nice, a lavender shade with just a touch more pink than Lilacism (last years collection) and Sand Tropez a dark sandy color with slight shimmer.

I hope this inspires you to treat yourself to something bold and bright for Spring.

Feb 6, 2011

Cold Comfort

 New Yorkers have gotten used to the weekly snow storms since December of last year. I'm dreaming of green grass and warmer temps. I got to thinking that my skincare and haircare routines are very different in comparison to the rest of the year. Everything is drier, wind damaged, and begging for moisture. Here are my head to toe favorites for the cold season. I want to start by saying, what you put ON is as important as what you put IN. So good skin, great hair, good teeth all start with diet. My intake of Vitamin C and D are increased for these months because your body needs more of those vitamins to fend off colds and the flu. You can easily find out if you're getting enough Vitamin D when you get your blood work up done during any routine physical. Something I do all year long is drinking hot lemon water first thing in the morning keeps your liver functioning to it's max (vitamin c) and prepares the body to accept whatever you're going to put into your body.  As someone that suffered from chronic bronchitis every year, -and no longer, these changes have helped me tremendously. On to the beauty bets!

Hair! I have had a huge issue with static for years. I was told to use heavier conditioners and shine serums but found that everything weighed down my hair. Then came the creation of Frederic Fekkai Moisturizing Conditioner with Shea Butter. Keeps the locks soft, manageable, and static free, plus it smells great. Something else I do during the winter months is slather on coconut oil through my scalp and hair and leaving it in for 20 minutes or so, before washing it out. This the best natural remedy I know of to ensure "head and hair health". For those of you who have never used it, when you buy it in solid form it melts on contact. Working our way down is a facial moisturizer. In a previous post I mentioned Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizer, which I do solemnly swear by in frigid temperatures. Next we get to lips. I have an enormous amount of lip products. I'm always on the look out for the next best thing. My stand by is good old fashioned Carmex from the drug store, especially in the winter. It's heavier and forms a much thicker protection barrier than anything else. At night I switch over to Neosporins for lips overnight renewal therapy, which does exactly what it promises; repairs as you sleep, and if you slather on lipstick and gloss all day long then you know your lips need a relief come bedtime.

Everyone has a favorite body lotion and I have never met a woman that didn't have more than one favorite. I have a few that I really do like. Currently I'm a fan of Korres Body Butters. They are scented so beware. I find the butters to be thicker and great for the winter. I also really find Burt's Bees Naturally Nourishing Milk & Honey body lotion to work well to keep skin soft and itch-free all day long. Burts Bee's has a great line of body moisturizing at really decent prices and it's easily found just about everywhere now. I can't recommend Burts Bees products highly enough as you can see in a previous post (Almond Hand creme a MUST for winter!) If you want to splurge go with Kiehls original Creme de Corps line. This is the cream of the crop where body moisturizers are concerned; made with very rich ingredients, like cocoa butter and sesame oil, no doubt giving it that great smell.

And last but not least are the feet. Not only are you protecting your feet from the cold beneath it, but you're preparing your feet for spring and summer ultimately. There are a lot of great products on the market but my favorite has to be Neutrogena® Foot Cream. This is thick, rich and especially formulated to prevent dry chapped skin from coming back. Another favorite is Burts Bees Coconut Foot Creme, which continues to play into my coconut obsession. You will go through a tube in one season which is ideal because products from Burts Bees are for the most part "natural" which means they do "go bad" or get old as time goes on. You'll notice the texture changes as does the scent. This is only natural, pun intended.

In my next post I'll do beauty haul & all my favorite (user friendly, most informative) beauty sites  Stay warm dolls!

Jan 6, 2011

Oil Spill!

Do not fear, this is a good oil spill. I have had combination skin for all of my life, and so for years I used "oil-free" cleansers. My skin felt great afterward; fresh, squeaky clean, residue-free. But over time I realized that that "squeaky clean" feeling was really me stripping my skin of oils it needs to keep it's elasticity and youthful appearance. I have been using and swearing by Desert Essence Thoroughly Clean Face Wash because it's not harsh but does a brilliant job of cleaning (using tea tree oil) without stripping. For years I'd heard about women using cleansing oil, and because of my t-zone issue I stuck to my guns about using an oil free cleanser. That is to say, until I got a small sample of Shu Uemura's Cleansing Oil. For a short time Sephora had travel size bottles in stock and luckily I snagged a free sample! After reading and often disbelieving a lot of online reviews, I threw caution to wind and tried it for myself. Oil can actually clean oil! Our skin seeps sebum (oily/waxy matter) in order to protect our skin, but this can cause bacteria in some cases, thus problematic skin. The more you strip your skin with cleanser, the more sebum your skin produces, hence oily skin comes back. It's hard to break a skincare regimen when it's done alright by you for years, but I decided to give it go since skin changes with age, like every thing else. My skin was soft, my pores clean and now I can positively say, I am a believer.

Dec 24, 2010


These are some of the tools and products I use everyday. I almost entitled this post "can't live without you" and for good reason. Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion is an oldie but goody. My mother used this, therefor I use it. I have combination skin but I find it to be the best daytime lotion for me during the winter months. My foundation stays put all day after using this product. That little lavender genie like looking bottle is one of my all time favorite products, Urban Decays Eyeshadow Primer Potion. I have no idea what eyeshadow wearers did before this product. I always had a tremendous amount of fallout from shadow and terrible creasing. This keeps your eyeshadow in place and in check ALL day. Something else I keep in check in all day is shine. MAC's Pressed Blotting Powder goes with me everywhere for touch ups. Another great MAC product is their Eyebrow Pencil in Stud. It provides precision shaping and defining, after all your brows frame your face. I also recommend investing in a duo eyelash/eybrow comb and good sharp easy to hold tweezers, like the small one here by Tweezerman to keep those brows well groomed! One of the fastest ways to perk up any face with minimal make up is to curl your lashes with an eyelash curler (I'm partial to Lacrosse) and do one coat of mascara. Here's to putting your best face forward.

Dec 19, 2010

Cinderella Serum

I call it that because of it's name. Keihl's Midnight Recovery Concentrate is something of a miracle worker. It does exactly what the little blue bottle promises; restores the appearance of skin by morning. I was a skeptic until I snagged a sample. A few drops of this serum on moist skin goes a long way and in the morning your face will thank you. It is essentially - an elixir made of essential oils. I really haven't found other products that have a perfect blend of  essential oils that wasn't harsh on the skin. I have always been a fan of Kiehl's and while I think some products get a lot of hype (I've tried better lip balms), I find this to be fantastic for those of us that want a light but effective moisturizer at bedtime instead of the usual overly thick night cremes. It is a little hefty on the wallet at $42 for 1.0oz, but I go by a little mantra my Mother always told me, you can't really put a price on good health........or great skin for that matter.

Nov 27, 2010

Of the Moment...

These are some of my favorite products of the moment. First is a product new in 2010, Boscia's Luminizing Black Mask. It goes on like tar, but leaves my skin feeling fresh, and clean, and as if I had a mini facial. I defy anyone to not love this peel off mask. Also new this year, Clinique's Even Better Clinical Spot treatment for those of us that scar easily. This is a miracle product. Spots fade away and results are soon within 2 weeks. Weleda Wild Rose night cream is great for the cooler, drier nights of fall and winter. Weleda in general has a fantastic skincare line. Another big wig in skincare is the ever present Burt's Bee's. This wonderfully thick hand creme smells so good you almost want to eat it. Think marzipan. After making your hands super smooth go for a pop of color. Essie's Lollipop nail polish to be exact. And lastly Smith's Menthol & Eucalyptus balm is a fixture on my nightstand. I'm a sucker for eucalyptus and this is just a really nice balm for lips.