Think Beautifully Everyday Rotating Header Image

A wonder-ful value!

Oh dear, I’ve caught it.  I’ve caught new bling-itis!  It’s a terrible illness, where one has to have all the pretty sparkles.

My most recent haul included the Smashbox Wondervision mega palette.  When I first saw this gem, I thought, wow that’s pretty but it looks like many of the colors that I have in the Photo Op Mega Palette that I still have (and sadly, rarely use), so I didn’t jump up and buy it at full retail ($49).  I wanted to see what others were saying, and how the quality was.  Have you noticed, like I have, that so many of the holiday palettes tend to be inferior quality to the regular line?  I continuously am disappointing by sets from other manufacturers that just aren’t up to par.

Smashbox Wonder VisionSo, time passed, and I kept looking at the pretty sparkles.  Then one day, the ULTA flyer came in the mail offering the palate at a sale price of $39.  Well, that made me think. Then a beauty sister offered me her coupon code.  That made it $32.  Well, I could no longer resist the pull of the gorgeous set, which comes with 30 shadows, 3 blushes and a bronzer as well as clear plastic look cards that can be placed over the colors of your choice for easy gorgeousness.

With everything from matte neutral, glimmer neutral, purple, pink, green and blue hues, there is something fro everyone here.  I have been experimenting with the looks and the colors, and going outside of my matte neutral zone with some awesome results.  The Wonder Vision line is Smashbox’s limited edition Holiday 2013 product line, and the mega palette includes

These colors are in Smashbox’s creamy, richly pigmented formula that glides on like a dream.  I was a bit worried about these being the same delicious formula as the Photo Op Mega Palette, and fortunately they are.  They are easy to work with, and can be light and sheer, or deep and rich depending on how you apply them.  What I really love about this palette is that the look cards lay over 4 colors at a time, so you have infinite possibilities and ideas to get you started.  While giant palates can be a bit scary, which WONDERVISION MEGA PALETTEfrankly is why I don’t use the Photo Op one much, these cards make it easy to create looks and play.

I won’t swatch the colors here since I know you all can google.  While this is sold out at ULTA, it is still available at Smashbox.com for the $39 price, and if you get a chance to get your hands on this gorgeous palate do it!  You won’t be sorry!

 

Google

Happy New Year! Resetting and rebooting

Here we are, another new year.  Yikes!  How did that happen again?  2014 is already a week old, and like many of us, I am on a path to better heath, better eating, and more fun.  You  might not know that I love to cook, and try new cookbooks and recipies all the time, paired iwth wine.  You might also not know that I hate to cook for myself.  Yes, it’s true!  Cooking for one is a pain:  with no dishwasher, and limited counter space, it means a pile of pots and pans, and creative us of my counter.

I have been in a bad pattern lately, stress eating, ordering too much takeout, and just not thinking about what I’m eating . As a result, some of the weight I lost in 2012 have found it’s way back to me.  While I don’t generally dwell on the numbers, I do worry about my overall health and am determined not to let the battle of the bulge be lost to stress and depression.  No sirree!

Luckily, the good folks at Cedar Fort Publishing and Dalyn Miller Public Relations have given me inspiration and ideas on how to cook great food both on a budget, and with the magic of my slow cooker.

Paleo has been trending for a few years now, and in my opinion is bascially Atkins / South Beach / The Zone / Sugar Busters /Whole9 on steroids.  In fact, my research shows that pretty much every “trend” diet is the same, with a few tweaks.  That said, I like that the Paleo lifestyle emphasizes all natural, high protein, low or no carb foods that are unprocessed and full of flavor.  Yay!  If you know me, you know I’ve always battled the bulge, and while I am passionate about wine, food, travel and cocktails, I still need to balance it with health.  I’m happy to say a Paleo-like plan helped me immensely in 2012, and I’m ready to reboot in 2014.

The first cookbook, Paleo on a Budget is full of recipes that are friendly on the wallet, as well as your eating plan.  After flipping through the pages looking for a few good recipes that I could make and save (a single gal’s secret weapon), I went with Pork Loin Chops with Apple Cider, and Onions.  I paired that with scrumptious Brussells Sprouts & Bacon in Balsamic Glaze.  Yozah!  As someone who has ALWAYS said I would never eat Brussels Sprouts since they reminded me of the dirty gym socks that my mother tried to pass off when I was growing up, I was impressed and amazed at what they could actually taste like.  And they were legitimately Paleo!  Well according to my version anyway.

Paleo on a Budget is a beautiful cookbook with full page pictures and easy to understand instructions, in well thought out recipes that won’t take 3 hours to prepare.  Author Elizabeth McGaw runs the Paleo on a Budget webiste, with handy weekly meal plans and advice for the Paleo beginner (me!).

I paired the yummy pork with both an Oregon Chardonnay, as well as a lighter Piniot Noir.  Both worked well and brought out the fruity notes of the apples and cider vinegar.

The Paleo lifestyle can be super strict or not so much, and while I’m not going to go in to the details of the plan here, I will say that it can go from no grain, no butter (but ghee is acceptable), no fermented foods (the horror  the horror!), to a somewhat looser version where bacon, the occasional glass of wine, vinegar and other foods are allowed.  Since I firmly believe that every in moderation is crucial, I tend to adapt the plan to suit my wine filled lifestyle while still maintaining the core values and the  intention of losing weight and getting healthier.

The second Paleo cookbook that I received is my secret weapon:  The Paleo Slow Cooker, by Arsy Vartanian, is a great way to keep on track with just a little planning ahead.  I don’t use my slow cooker enough, and this cookbook has been a great nudge to pull it out of the cabinet and leave it on the counter.    Another beautiful cookbook, with full page images of the creations, the use of the slow cooker makes planning ahead easy.    

I tried the Honey Mustard Caveman Drumsticks, which were savory, sweet, spicy, sticky and downright delicious.  I halved the recipe and still had plenty to put in the fridge, and they keep very well.

Pair the Drumsticks with an off dry Riesling or Viognier for a pop of flavor.  Enjoy these recipes with a glass of wine and plenty of water, and toast to good health and tasty food in 2014!

What are your favorite healthy recipes?

These cookbooks were provided by the publisher or PR agent for consideration.

Google

 

 

Clearly Correct is IT!

First of all, what is a CC Cream?  You’ve heard me talk about BB Creams, and they are fantastic, all purpose wonder products (though some are better than other).  The same is true for CC Creams, there are great, horrible, and meh products.  But with all the hype out there for BB, CC, DD and what the heck creams, let’s do a little background.

CC, in this case, is used for Color Correcting or Color Control cream.  Just like BB creams, the first versions came out of Korea and the Asian market, where a CC cream is a BB cream with more features and benefits like redness reducing, light diffusing and correcting pigments.  Another critical factor in a good CC cream is a powerful SPF, which is critical for all of us i we’re out in the sun for more than 5 minutes.  SPF is one of the best anti aging tools out there!

As a kid, I spent a lot of time in the sun – skiing, swimming, playing.  Unfortunately, my Irish & German coloring didn’t like it when my Sea & Ski sunblock wore off – or when the Coppertone Tanning Oil did nothing but help me sizzle at the beach.  So, here I am in my early 40s paying the price.  From discoloration to sunspots, I am pretty damn lucky that I have no signs of skin cancer.  This Irish & German lass turns pink after sitting in the sun for an hour so I’m always looking for products that are multi taskers.

The IT Cosmetics Your Skin But Better CC Cream does just that.  As with all other IT products, it’s packed full of anti aging benefits and good for you ingredients.  But this product is different because it’s one product that does all of this:

  • Anti aging serum
  • SPF 50+ in a non chemical form, which is important if you have sensativity to anything other than physical sunscreen (Titanium Dioxide)
  • Anti aging moisturizer
  • Foundation
  • skin brightener
  • pore correcotr
  • concealer/corrector

I admit, I was skeptical when I first got this product after trying many BB creams that just didn’t do anything for me.  But the IT CC Cream is different.  Because it’s many products in one, unless I’m having a really dry day, I can jump from the shower and put CC cream on after, skipping the moisturizer, primer, foundation and setting powder.

This medium-full coverage product is highly pigmented, but doesn’t look fake or masky.  I’ve played with a few application techniques and found that if I want lighter coverage, a flat paddle brush is wonderful for application, using a buffing brush to even out the application.  Other days, I use my fingers to swirl on the CC cream in circular motions; the warmth of your fingers will melt the product in to your skin, giving a smooth and even finish that dries with a soft matte finish   If you really have some problem areas, you can post conceal to cover and stubborn spots.  I do find that less is more with the IT CC cream, so start small and build coverage until you find the right amount for your skin.  The first time I used it, I was rubbing off all over the place and no one wants that!

There is a lemon scent to this product, so if you are sensitive to smells –  be warned.

So, how does it work?  I personally wore the IT CC Cream for two weeks, forgoing any other foundation or skin care, to see how my skin responded.  What I found was that my skin was smoother, silkier, and more even toned.  NOw, I am a die hard IT fan, so to skip the 50 Primer and my regular routine was pretty tough – but I seriously noticed a difference after the first few days.

The CC Cream is very moisturizing, so if you have oily skin or an oily T zone like me, I use a touch of Bye Bye Pores over those areas to lock in the cream and calm down any oily spots.  If I’m having a day where I need more coverage or feel like I do, I pop my Celebration Foundation in my bag for touch ups during the day.  

I wear Light this time of year, but could get away with Medium in the summer.  The shades are quite forgiving as it’s primarily skin care, with adjusting pigments.  I will be repurchasing this product for sure!  The best part?  It’s skin care so you don’t have to worry about washing it off at night!  Stay tuned, because next up is my review of the Tarte BB Primer, also something I love!

Grade:  A- – the scent is rather strong and I wish it was a bit less but it dissipates.

$38 ITCosmetics.com 

Google

Pore Perfection!

You know how it is, you see the craters, you see the holes in your face.  For me, part of aging has been an increase in my pore size, and an increase in the oiliness of the t-zone.  I’m sure you oily skinned gals know the frustration I feel!

So what can you do to help tighten these pores and reduce the oil production?  Well in short, pretty much nothing.  My dermatologist says so, all the beauty experts say so.

But you can shrink the appearance of your pores, and help to control the oil production, or at least the impact of it!

Algenist - Multi-Perfecting Pore Corrector ConcentrateAs you have read in previous posts, I am loving what Algenist is doing.  A local, San Francisco based company, Algenist was created to find new energy sources.  However, with the discovery of algeronic acid, a skincare company was born.

The Algenist multi-perfecting pore corrector is a lightweight, oil-free serum that tightens pores, smooths roughness, and refines skin texture.  A serum that includes both the patented anti-aging Alguronic acid and salicylic acid (a well known anti-acne powerhouse), this serum has been amazing!

I personally use this every morning and night, on my t-zone – which is where my pores are the largest and most noticeable.  It’s been about a month, and while they certainly aren’t invisible, I do think there is a difference.  It is very gentle and has also helped with the general texture of my skin.

Give it a shot!  In combination with the Algenist moisturizer, and the IT Cosmetics primer, this is one of my core skincare products.  A little goes a long way, and this should last you 6+ months.

Grade:  B+ (but I reserve the right to improve it with time!)

 

$75 (QVC, Algenist.com, Sephora)

 

IT Cosmetics Tightliner rocks my world!

IMG_0750You know the drill, you curl your lashes, you apply a lash primer, you apply one, two, three coats of mascara.  Or maybe you use a lash enhancing product, prescription or otherwise.  We all go to great lengths **pun intended** to get the best, thickest, most luscious lashes.  What a pain!

But I have a new secret weapon!  It’s been a long kept make-up artist secret that you can make an illusion of thicker, fuller, lashes by using a black tightliner at the base of the lashes.  Tightlining is the use of an eyeliner very,very, very close to the base or at the base of your lashes, which gives you the look of a thick bed of lashes.

Now I’ve tried all sorts of products for tightlining:  Cake eyeliners; liquid eyeliners; powder eyeliners.  But all I succeeded in doing was making a mess!  I have thin, sparse, uber curly lashes.  There really isn’t anything wrong with them, but they are boring and don’t frame my eyes very well.  I’ve tried Lash Food, I’ve tried Latisse, I’ve tried primers.  They all work in their own way – sort of.  But now…

IT Cosmetics launched the Tightline Full Lash Length Black Eyelash Primer in a kit recently, and now is selling it in a duo on its own.  It’s a game-changer, as are many of the IT Cosmetics products, and it really does work.  The ultra-skinny wand helps you to coat your lashes at the root, which accentuates volume and length, and if you have sparse or missing lashes — raises hand –, the Tightline brush lays down black pigment along your entire lash line.  This fills in those sparse spots, creating a beautiful lash line and the look of an eyeliner!

I love this product.  When I use the Tightline, and then a coat of mascara, it speaks volumes.  In fact, some days, I can get away with just the tightline, which accentuates my lashes, and frames my eyes.  But why is this different from any other tightliner or primer?  In addition to the skinny wand, which really makes a difference, the wand also deposits conditioning serum from root to tip, full o peptides, collagen, proteins, biotin, nettle extract, green tea, jojoba, and vitamins.  While non prescription lash conditioners also have such ingredients, they either have a paintbrush applicator, so you can spread it on your eyelid, or a fat wand; neither of which really get to the base of the lash if you have curly Qs like I do.

IMG_0776

  • The one negative element of this product, is that IT jobs it off to Korea.  That really disappointed me, as I am a stickler for cosmetics that I can keep an eye on.  While the FDA doesn’t regulate the industry in the US, we do have more clarity in ingredients here, so I can keep better tabs on what is going on my body.  Fortunately, I know that IT Cosmetics as an organization is equally concerned with good for you, natural ingredients so I’m less concerned than I would otherwise be.  However, really guys?  We can’t make that here or in Canada?

The ingredients list is fairly clear, and primarily plant-based extracts:

CAMELLIA SINENSIS LEAF WATER, STYRENE/ACRYLATES/AMMONIUM METHACRYLATE COPOLYMER, WATER, BEESWAX, STEARIC ACID, COPERNICIA CERIFERA (CARNAUBA) WAX, HYDROGENATED POLYISOBUTENE, GLYCERIN, MICROCRYSTALLINE CELLULOSE, TROMETHAMINE,GLYCERYL STEARATE, HECTORITE, PHENOXYETHANOL, DIMETHICONE, CAMELLIA SINENSIS LEAF POWDER, EUPHORBIA CERIFERA (CANDELILLA) WAX, ETHYLHEXYLGLYCERIN, IRON HYDROXIDE, OLEA EUROPAEA (OLIVE) FRUIT OIL, ARGININE, ASCORBYL PALMITATE, BIOTIN, CAMELLIA SINENSIS LEAF EXTRACT, CENTELLA ASIATICA EXTRACT, CHOLESTEROL, EUTERPE OLERACEA FRUIT EXTRACT, HYDROLYZED COLLAGEN, HYDROLYZED WHEAT PROTEIN, LAUROYL LYSINE, LECITHIN, PANTHENOL, SIMMONDSIA CHINENSIS (JOJOBA) SEED OIL,
PRUNUS ARMENIACA (APRICOT) FRUIT EXTRACT, ROSA CANINA FRUIT EXTRACT, SERENOA SERRULATA FRUIT EXTRACT, CENTELLA ASIATICA MERISTEM CELL CULTURE, ALOE BARBADENSIS LEAF EXTRACT, ANGELICA DAHURICA ROOT EXTRACT, ASARUM SIEBOLDI ROOT EXTRACT, CHAMOMILLA RECUTITA (MATRICARIA) FLOWER/LEAF EXTRACT, CHRYSANTHEMUM MORIFOLIUM FLOWER EXTRACT, CNIDIUM
OFFICINALE ROOT EXTRACT, ECLIPTA PROSTRATA EXTRACT, HIPPOPHAE RHAMNOIDES EXTRACT, JUGLANS REGIA (WALNUT) SEED EXTRACT, MORUS ALBA ROOT EXTRACT, PERSEA GRATISSIMA(AVOCADO) FRUIT EXTRACT, SAMBUCUS NIGRA FRUIT EXTRACT, SIMMONDSIA CHINENSIS (JOJOBA) SEED EXTRACT, THUJA OCCIDENTALIS LEAF EXTRACT, URTICA DIOICA (NETTLE) EXTRACT, VITEX TRIFOLIA FRUIT EXTRACT, PALMITOYL HEXAPEPTIDE-12, XANTHAN GUM. MAY CONTAIN: IRON OXIDES (CI 77499).

Grade:  A-  I love this product, and will restock for sure.  The minus is for being made in Korea.

$29 for two is a bargain!

IT Cosmetics No. 50 Serum Anti-Aging Collagen Veil Primer


I can’t really believe how much I love this primer!  I have a few tried and true primers that I love, and I wasn’t sure this was going to be anything special…

As a refresher, a foundation primer act in conjunction with your moisturizer.  Think of it like you prime a wall – facial primer improves application of foundation, creating a smooth, even surface, and create a barrier between your foundation and your skin.  This is important, because often times, without a primer, your skin soaks up all of your product – and you end up looking like you didn’t put any on at all.  Primers help your makeup stay on longer and some help even out your skin tone. 

 The IT Cosmetics No. 50 Serum Anti-Aging Collagen Veil Primer is special.  This multi-tasker is both a primer and a skin treating serum in one step – infused in with more than 50 beneficial ingredients, including hydrating anti-aging peptides, collagen, niacin, essential lipid-rich oils, vitamins, extracts and botanicals to nurture your skin.

With clinicals that have proven to increase hydration in the skin, No. 50 has been shown to reduce the appearance of pores, fine lines and brighten your skin.  Well ok!  I could use all the help I can get these days.

You won’t be disappointed.  I’ve been using this primer for almost a month, and I can’t believe how my skin is reacting.  Not only does it work like a charm in terms of keeping my makeup in place, it has actually changed my skin.  My face is silky smooth and soft, and I find that it has a more even, smooth texture.  It also has helped to improve the appearance of my crater like pores.

The best part about this primer for me?  No greasy, slippery dimethicone.  I know a lot of gals swear by Smashbox primer — but I can’t stand the sticky silicon-based gels.  They just feel like they are clogging my face.  No. 50 works differently, because it’s a serum.  As Jamie Kern LIma says, it’s like baby skin in a bottle.

There are 50 ingredients in this tiny bottle, including 10 essential oils and butters, 10 nourishing botanicals, 30 fruit and plant-based extracts plus powerful anti-oxidants and vitamins including Vitamins A, B5, brightening C & E, Peptides, Hydrolyzed Collagen, Silk and Niacin all work together for you all day long. Hyaluronic Acid provides a healthy drink of hydration your skin. Aloe, Jojoba, Licorice Root, Chamomile and Colloidal Oatmeal, soothe and comfort. Powerful anti-oxidants work to ward off free radicals and protect your skin from the environment to aid in the prevention of premature aging, keeping your skin luminous, supple and healthy looking! 

Grade:  A+ Totally, utterly, in love!  $48 for 1.7 oz, which should last you at least 6 months.

A new power powder?

 

tarte Amazonian Clay Full Coverage Powder Foundation

Another powder foundation?  Really?  Haven’t we already been here?  Well, I guess not, particularly not for Tarte.  The Tarte Amazonian Clay Full Coverage Powder Foundation is the brand’s first ever full-coverage powder foundation enriched with Amazonian clay and gemstones.

According to the website, Why is it different: This finely milled powder offers eight hours of full coverage with a skin-balancing formula that delivers a natural-looking finish that won’t settle into fine lines or wrinkles. The moisture-rich, weightless foundation buffs on smooth and allows your skin to breathe! Thanks to Amazonian clay and gemstones, the foundation reawakens and invigorates skin tone and texture for a more youthful-looking complexion.

I really wanted to like this product.  I really enjoy the Tarte Amazonian Clay products, and the AC foundation is one of my favorites.  Unfortunately, I just didn’t like this one.  When I first applied it, I loved the way it looked.  I even liked it more than Bare Escentuals, which I have not been enjoying as my skin has changed as I get older.  Using the traditional technique of dab, tap, and buff, it initially looked flawless.

At first, it looked great.  It absorbed the excess oil on my nose, and looked great.  For a while.  but then…a few hours later, it started to look patchy and flakey.  By the end of the day, I had patches of powder, nad patches of uncovered skin.  YUCKO!

The brush was great, and the packaging was helpful, since just the right amount came out.  But, the wear just wasn’t there.  Having tried it with both primer and without, it just didn’t do it for me, so back it goes.

Grade:  D.  Disappointing.  For $44, I expect so much more and will spend my money on other brands for a loose product.

This one just didn’t make the cut.

A breath of fresh air for your face!

Here she is, Miss America!  At least that is how I feel when I’m wearing this foundation.  I have tried it all beauties, every last one of the latest the greatest the newest foundations.  Liquid, powder, powder cream, mousse, BB cream.

I have loved some, I have hated some.  But this?  This I love.  Now, there’s no secret that I love IT Cosmetics in general, and to date, only one product has not stayed in my beauty treasure trove.  But this is different.

The IT O2 Oxygen Foundation marks the second foundation for IT Cosmetics, although one could argue that the Bye Bye Undereye Concealer makes three.  However, this is the first liquid foundation in the IT arsenal.

This magic potion is more than just a foundation; it’s really skin care with tone.  With the classic IT goodies like antiaging peptides, hyaluronic acid, hydrolyzed collagen, and special It Cosmetics Drops of Light reflecting pigments, this foundation covers and then some.  

The secret to the O2 Foundation is the “oxygen”.  Everyone is doing it, Benefit Oxygen Foundation, UD Naked, etc.  Everyone is in the oxygen tank, trying to hydrate your skin.  The theory is that if you deliver more oxygen to your skin ,it will assist in repairing damaged cells, and moisturization.

This is a silky and light foundation when it comes out of the bottle, and was slightly running but not watery.  I found it quite sheer to begin with, but quickly found it to be excellent coverage with some buildable layers and practice.  Because this is a treatment, I tend not to wear primer with this foundation.  I occasionally spot conceal if I have really noticeable things that need help, but two layers of the O2 foundation and BAM!  

 

My skin tone is evened out, and my skin feels like silk when wearing this product.  I actually think my skin has improved overall when wearing this every day.  The anti aging benefits of peptides, collagen,and niacin are truly powerhouses and make a huge difference.

I apply this over clean, moisturized skin using a flat foundation brush (paintbrush style), and using my fingers to blend it in.  Finally, I use a big buffing brush like the flathead IT foundation brush, to buff it out for a flawless and luminous finish.  I personally do not care for the hydrasponge that comes with it.  Its’ too big to be used for most of your face, and it has a slick silicone texture.  A Beauty Blender is a great option if you like more coverage, and I often use this technique as well.  If you prefer a more matte finish, just dust ab it of Bye Bye Pores finishing powder over it, and your puss will last all day!  Occasionally, if I need an extra boost of coverage, I will use the Celebration Foundation over this, but that is super duper heavy full coverage and it takes a bit of practice to see what your skin really wants.

Another knockout for me, and I will be putting this on my Holy Grail list!

This is currently a QVC excusive, and is available or $38.

 

Know your ingredients!

I love skincare, and I particularly love natural skin care.  There are enough chemicals floating around the world, so who needs to add them to our faces, right?  So when I was asked to try some new products that were natural, and minimally processed, I was excited to find Know Your Ingredients.

KYI’s goal is to created natural, simple products that have high impact changes on your skin.
These are some luscious items, and I hope you try them for yourself!

IMG_0784

The Argan Oil Serum with Vitamin C ($45 for 2 oz) uses a specially formulated vitamin c that is oil-soluble.  Vitamin C is an essential anti oxidant, and a wonderful booster for your skin.  It adds brightness, increases firmness, and helps fend off free radicals.  I absolutely LOVE this product!  I use it all over my body, but especially on my face.  The argan oil we know and love is a fantastic moisturizer, and the vitamin c brightens and firms.  I consider this a combination of Ole Hendrickson’s Truth Serum (which I adore but it’s pricey) and Josie Maran’s Argan Oil (also pricy).  The double whammy impact of this is like BE’s Night Serum, and really gave my travel weary skin a major boost.  Love!
The Sweet Almond Softening Oil is another great moisturizer.  If you suffer from dry skin

IMG_0785

(or, as my dermo likes to call it, “pathologically dry”) this is a no brainer.  Say good by to your scaly skin!  I use this every night, and after every shower to lock in moisture.  After travelling in
Europe, where it was still the dead of winter, my skin was dry and not so happy with me.  This oil reversed that, and comes in several aromatherapy scents (or unscented if you prefer).  At $20 for 8 oz it’s also a fantastic value.  Almond oil has long been a trick in natural beauty and health food stores, so it’s great to see it back.  Rich in Vitamin E, it will make you glow!
IMG_0787

Finally ,the Whipped Shea Butter Mask is a great way to give your face a super charge of moisture.  You know shea butter, it’s been around for years.  The base ingredient in many of your favorite hand creams, this mask will soften and erase those pesky fine lines.  Once again, it’s a great trick for super dry hands, feet, elbows and any other area that is suffering in the winter dry air.
Thank you Know Your Ingredients for making some fantastic products!  For those of you that are looking for natural and affordable products in your arsenal, check these out.

These products were provided by KNI for consideration, but all opinions are my own.

 

My close up sir!

IMG_0759

We all know that mascara can really make your eyes pop.  But do you look like a 1950s movie star?  Do you look like you just sprouted false eyelashes?

I’ve long been a fan of Tarte’s Lights, Camera, Lashes.  While I have to say Gifted nudged LCL out of the running for my holy grail, I am happy to say that the latest incarnation, Lights, Camera, FLASHES is back in the running as the best mascara ever!

Why?  This über black, über rich mascara lengthens, curls, volumizes, illuminates, and conditions lashes and really gives them that va va voom factor.  My lashes are challenged.  With curly ques that make them curl back in on them selves, and all over, I struggle to find a mascara that doesn’t irritate my eyes, and also makes them look amazing.

Yay for Lights, Camera, Flashes!

This is a very different wand applicator, which is what Tarte claims is the unique factor in this product.  

Why is it different: This amped-up, ultra-rich black mascara lengthens, curls, volumizes, illuminates, and conditions to take lashes to the extreme. tarte’s triple black complex fuses iron oxide and mineral pigments to visibly blacken lashes for a rich, jet-black, intensified look that gives the appearance of longer lashes. It also uniquely reflects light onto lashes, creating a luminous “flashes effect.” The custom-engineered, molded, 360-degree dual-flex mascara wand combines short and long bristles for even-coated, clump-free lashes.

With the dual ended applicator, it’s easy to create thick, full lashes with the dense, soft side.  Then ,flip over the wand and comb out your lashes with the longer, firm-flex bristles.  I also love the limited edition gold packaging!

This is currently a QVC exclusive, and is available for $23, but I got mine in the last TSV (which has the next installment is due soon!)

tarte Lights Camera Flashes Mascara

Image provided by Tarte

Verdict:  Love!  If you want thick, lush lashes, pick this beauty up.