Jul 30, 2010

Beauty Tip #2: Even MORE Bronzer Tips for my Pasty Friends

Summer + Skin = MAJOR need for bronzer.

A friend of mine, also a pasty sister, really likes my posts about bronzing products and tips about "faking" a tan so, Lori, this is for you. Oh AND I thought it was time to share a smashing bronzer tip, one that I've been using since my dance days. (This, also, doesn't involve shelling out money for products providing you have a big powder brush and a great loose bronzer.)

I'm sure you already know what I'm about to say BUT brushing on a tan gives you ultimate control (so you can apply as much, or as little, as you want) PLUS there's no streaking. Dip your brush in the bronzer and, seriously, go nuts. (I like to use a loose bronzer that has a shimmer. I find that a matte bronzer can look a bit too fake, if you know what I mean.) When applying, make sure you're twisting the brush into your skin using circular motions instead of just brushing it on. We want to make sure the powder stays on your skin and not on other things, like clothes....ha.

Using this technique is great for creating cleavage when wearing low shirts AND is also nice on legs when wearing skirts or shorts. Plus, if you have a bronzer that you love for your face why not stay with the same color on your body.

*Remember - When using this technique don't brush the bronzer on slick limbs. Trust me, you'll have little pieces of bristle everywhere. (My boyfriend, Allan, has picked off soo many of these "whiskers"....ha.) Just make sure your skin is dry prior to application.

Jul 29, 2010

Tanning Oil and Sunscreen: A Debate

I was taking part in an "Amazing Race" like event last Saturday with a couple of my close friends. My partner in the race, and very good friend, was lubing (Ha...sorry Carmen) herself up with her "all-natural" tanning oil whereas I was slapping on the 30 SPF sunscreen. Let me first say that Carmen is the only natural blonde I know that doesn't burn. (Trust me, it makes me nauseous too.) Because she never burns, she was laughing at me and my OUTSTANDING relationship with the sun. Needless to say, she and I started to disagree about which product is better for you; Carmen taking the side of the oil and me, sticking with my trusty sunscreen.

Neat thing for me is that I get to post my opinions online. (YAY for blogging.)

Tanning Oils are mainly made with a base of Sunflower Oil and/or Coconut Oil. From there, other products are added like almond oil, cocoa butter, lanolin and eucalyptus oil. These products are what gives the skin a moisturized look and feel. Also, vitamins A, D and E are typically added and are very effective in treating dry and weathered skin. There are undeniable advantages of using tanning oil such as the amount of moisture your skin gets to the deep color of your tan.....this is where it gets a bit tricky. See, tanning oil intensifies the amount of ultraviolet light that reaches your skin, thus giving you a deeper, darker tan in way less time which means there is nothing that protects your skin from the UVA/UVB rays. Yes, some tanning oils promote an SPF 4 or 8 but this protection is almost too low to prevent anything. Plus, having an SPF added is almost counterproductive as oils promote tanning.

Sunscreens are, quite simply, the polar opposite of tanning oils. It was designed to absorb and reflect the UV rays which, as we all know, helps to prevent sunburns. (UV Light also triggers overproduction of melanin, which can be seen in the darker spots on the skin...aka freckles, moles, etc.) To make a long story short, about 90% of aged skin and wrinkles are caused by the sun's rays. SPF prevents those harmful rays from seeping into the skin which means a more youthful look for longer.

A lot of times people think that if they can't see skin damage it's not there which is definitely not the case. Most of the damage we are doing to our skin will not show up for 20 years.....SO, ladies, slap on the sunscreen. Remember, sunscreen is only preventing the damaging effects and will still allow you to get tanned.

Oh, one more thing, look for a sunscreen that contains titanium dioxide. (This pigment absorbs the UV light very quickly!) I highly recommend Clinque's Super City Block as it has titanium dioxide AND has an SPF of either 25 or 40.

Jul 28, 2010

Rave Review: Organix Shampoo and Conditioner

Sooooo, for people that don't know me, I'm literally obsessed with my hair...(news flash, I know.)

Sometimes, I'm surprised by how vast this obsession is since it's sometimes greater than my cosmetic fixation. I have no idea if it's because I have short hair OR that I'm just completely anal, but either way I love to have hair that looks, feels and smells great. Oh, and if I can have smashing hair WITHOUT breaking the bank, even better.

Ladies, I have officially found a phenomenal shampoo and conditioner. The brand is called Organix and you can actually buy it at Superstore, Shoppers, London Drugs and even Zellers. It's about $7.99 a bottle and it smells like a dream. I am loving the Coconut Milk fragrance right now (being that it's summer and I don't live in the tropics) and am blown away by how moisturizing the shampoo and conditioner are.

Oh, another HUGE benefit is that the Organix line is completely paraben and sulfate-free. And all for under $10 a bottle.....you can't go wrong with that.

Try it guys, you will not be disappointed. http://www.organixhair.com/

(Wanted to also show you a picture of my newly cut short hair.....I am soooo loving it right now.)

Jul 27, 2010

Dog vs. Lipstick

I don't like lap dogs very much. Wait, let me rephrase that. I don't like lap dogs, period. I prefer a big, clumsy, goofy looking dogs that slober on everything and everyone. That being said, I received this picture in an email from my mom and couldn't get over how conducive it is.....See, women aren't the only ones that like lipstick!!!!

Jul 26, 2010

Renate's Faves for our Curly Haired Friends

How lucky am I, hey? My friends are so great that THEY want to write instead of me. I am definitely going to milk this for as long as possible.....Today, Renate is writing on products for our curly-haired friends. Read on product junkies.....

Hello ladies with curly hair!!

I know it can be difficult to tame those luscious locks , but fear not. Over the years, I have had a lot of clients with natural curly and wavy hair. My absolute favourite product to use is the TIGI Catwalk Curls Rock Amplifier Cream; this amazing product defines and seperates curls for you. You can use it alone for precise control or amplify with defining serum for feather light hold and waves. It can also be used on dry ends to de-frizz those unruly curls. A little goes a long way with this product, so one pump is usually all you need! (Note: This product works wonders if used on wet hair so once you've towel dried your hair, put this baby in!)

If you're looking for a product with a stronger hold without the wet look of a gel, try the lightweight mousse in the Curlesque Collection. This wonderful product has deep sea extracts of kelp, fennel, and seaweed which assist in smoothing the cuticle on demand for a frizz-free finish with light hold and amazing shine. I also recommend some great layers for curly hair! Don't be scared of putting in a few layers to help pump up those gorgeous curls. Just make sure your stylist knows how to properly texturize those layers ladies, we definitely don't want you walking out with a mushroom head!!!! And last, but not least, if you have a slight curl and are not quite sure how to make them bounce, I recommend investing in a universal diffuser. This awesome tool just slips on to the end of your blowdryer. After use, you will have amazing lift and curl in virtually no time at all! ............Renate

Jul 23, 2010

Guest Blog from the Smashing Ariella

I love guest blogs....it's so great to learn from others who have experience in so many different areas. My good friend Ariella is a phenomenal make-up artist who has amazing experience with cosmetics as well as application tips. (As well as secrets of the trade.) So, here she is......

My fabulous friend Christina asked me to let you guys in on a couple tricks of the trade. Being a make-up artist and a lover of all things natural, I have had the pleasure of trying out many products and have dabbled in creating my own concoctions.

1. Brushes. I am a firm believer in having great brushes. They allow you to apply your make-up better and are reusable (aka better for the environment). My two favourite brush lines are Quo(Shoppers Drug Mart Brand) and EcoTools (Alicia Silverstone’s Line). Both are inexpensive and durable. *Another great solution to make-up brushes are art brushes; some of my longest lasting and personal favourites are from my art store days. They are usually less expensive and just as effective. Another great note about brushes is this…Clean them! It’s important to keep your tools clean and sanitary. I can’t tell you how many make-up bags I have looked into that give me the creeps. I personally don’t bother with expensive brush cleaner since some 70% or 99% alcohol (and a shampoo every once in a while) will keep them as good as new.

2. Home-Made Scrubs. I don’t know about you, but I love a good scrub! I often make my own face and body scrubs because I haven’t found one that I love as much as the ones I make myself. Cetaphil and baking soda make a great daily exfoliating cleanser, while brown sugar is a great body scrub. That’s right, just some brown sugar (white sugar if you prefer a coarser scrub) and go to town with damp hands. Yes, it will start to melt, but no worries there as you'll taste nice and sweet.

3. Eye Liner. This is the topic I get asked about the most: How to apply liquid liner? How to get a straight line? Christina and I are hoping to make some how-to videos this summer to better illustrate some techniques, but in the meantime let me share a couple of points with you.

  • Liquid Liner - just because it comes with an applicator, doesn’t mean you have to use it! Use your favourite synthetic angled brush and it will give you more control.
  • Turn your favourite eye shadows into soft liners by dampening your brush before application.
  • Tight Liner – this is when you work eye shadow into the lash line from just below your lashes. It creates a fuller lash effect without looking like thick liner. (My daily wear.)
  • Practice – Liner isn’t easy and your eyelids aren’t carbon copies of each other which means you need to practice your application until you are at ease with it.

I would love to answer any of your questions as well so email cmwolthers@gmail.com should something pop into your head!

Jul 22, 2010

Razor Bumps...GONE

I am probably the only person I know that doesn't wax.


I know, sometimes even I can't believe it. Get this though, I actually went for a brazilian after my first tattoo. (Not too sure if I was sane at the time or running on adrenaline...) I visited my friend, an esthetician, who was going to complete this torturous event. Went to the salon, we got to chatting as she was setting up and I was trying to be brave the entire time. I think that I am the only person that has EVER done this, but halfway through I look at my friend and yell, "STOP". I got up, explained that I couldn't finish, paid her and walked out to her laughing at me. (love you Julie but seriously, that was the most pain I have ever been in.)

Needless to say, I have never gone back. Which means, yes, I have to use razors.
I am not going to get into picking a razor because that will take me all day, plus, it would cut into a different blog post, but I do want to say that because of shaving, I will get ingrown hairs and razor bumps. Everyone knows what they are and how embarassing they can be since it is beach time. If you are also prone to these unslightly bumps, do I ever have the solution for you.

It's called Tend Skin Liquid. This actually takes away the red bumps, ingrown hairs and irritation. It's also sensitive enough to use on your bikini area OR a man's face and neck. Put some on a cotton ball and rub over the area to soothe the irritation. Within minutes, you'll notice a drastic difference. This will work for people who have just shaved and also the amazing COURAGEOUS ladies who brave waxing.

Try it out ladies and trust me, you will wonder how you lived without something so great.

Jul 21, 2010

It's a Pimple Intervention

Yes, as you can see, I am posting about pimples....again. Now, it could be that I woke up this morning with a zit (...or three) on my chin, for which I'm retaliating, OR maybe I just have some great advice......Hmmmmm, food for thought.

Pimples, plain and simple, are the cause of excess oil clogging the pores. Once a pimple has emerged, it can also be spread to other parts of the skin very very quickly. Because of this, touching, squeezing, or picking is never advised. (But, come on, who actually listens to that.) Here are some great tips to actually prevent pimples....

1. Drink Water. Yes, we all know this. Weird thing is it actually works. Water is going to flush the toxins out of your body thus aiding in the prevention of acne or pimples.
2. Skin Care Regime. This is an absolute must! Develop a regime that involves a cleanser, exfoliant and a moisturizer. Exfoliating is one of the easiest ways to remove dirt and buildup on your skin. Ensure that the exfoliant you're using is gentle and doesn't irritate or dry your face.
3. Ponytails. For all the ladies with long hair ensure that you get it off your face when sleeping. If you are a fan of product, like I am, and don't wash your hair before bed, like me, just think of all that junk touching your skin. (Dry Shampoo, pomade, hair spray, hair masks.....sorry, just thinking what would be touching my skin if I had long hair...)
4. Pillowcases. Okay...I am not saying to wash your sheets every day or anything but changing your pillowcase every night will actually help. Our hair touches the pillowcase, then our faces touch it.....you get my drift
5. Wash It Off. You definitely want to remove the make-up before you sleep. Whenever I sleep in make-up, and yes, I have done so a few times, it always seems that I get a new pimple the next day. When you sleep, it's best to let your skin breathe so remove the daily face and put on a great night cream. You'll notice a major difference.
6. No Picking. Umm, I'm bad for this one. The last thing I want is to walk around with a big whitehead, so if you MUST touch it make sure that your hands are clean. (I find it best to only pick something after I've cleansed my face). Also, put a tissue in between your fingers and use the tissue to touch the actual zit, instead of your hands. (Less spreading this way.)
7. No Washcloths. This is something that my mom told me back when I was in high school. Washcloths, though clean, still harbour bacteria. Try not to use a washcloth when washing your face. I went out and bought a natural facial sponge that I use and have noticed a vast improvement to my skin. Also, change the towel you dry your face on often. Bacteria builds up everywhere and the last place we want it is on our face!

This tips will help greatly. Trust me on that. Also, if I have missed anything, let me know as I would love to be able to expand on this list.

Jul 20, 2010

Wow, what a pimple!

I think I breakout more, now, than I did as a teenager. Don't get my wrong...I definitely had my intense pimple period in High School. You know what I mean, the big ones that appeared on your chin and forehead and ALWAYS before the day of something big like the dance, or a date, or, for me, a big dance competition. And, to make it way worse, the pimples were always HUGE. Seriously, ginormous. Big, red welts that looked like something bit you....

It's taken me a long time to understand the cycles and spurts of pimples but, for the first time, I finally got a handle on my breakouts. Here are some of the best (and worst) spot treatments....

1. Toothpaste. This is for my girls who don't want to spend too much money. Dab (and I seriously mean a dab) of toothpaste on the pimple before bed. Overnight, this will take away the redness and irritation. Now, having said this, it will not take away the pimple, since every zit has a cycle it needs to finish, but this will make it easier for concealer in the morning.
2. Moor Spa Blemish Gel. This is an amazing product. I was breaking out like crazy for a few months about two years ago and I lived on Moor Spa. ( I will be doing a post on cleansers so we'll talk about it then.) It's a gel, so applied sparingly to the problem areas overnight, followed by your moisturizer. Once used for a few days, you'll notice vast improvements.
3. Burt's Bees Herbal Blemish Stick. This is an odd product. I use it since Burt's Bees is my favorite product line BUT it really doesn't do too much. If you have recently scrubbed your face and apply this product over top, it will sting a bit, though it does go away. I use this overnight AFTER my night cream and it will take away redness. Oh, one other thing, it goes on like a roll-on lip gloss. Not very sanitary if you ask me, but it is a natural product.
4. Proactiv Refining Mask. Soooo, don't judge me for putting this on my list because it seriously does work. I dislike the entire proactiv line as it is very addictive for your skin and drying, BUT the mask is a dream. The tube, which is really small, can cost a pretty penny, but if used only as a spot treatment will last quite some time. Apply overnight to zit and it will be almost invisible the next morning. It works really well.
5. Clinique Acne Solutions Spot Treatment Gel. Whew, what a mouthful. It works; long and short of it. I have been a faithful Clinique user since my mom was their Rep and honestly, this product is great. Don't use too much as it can dry the skin around the pimple, but it works to reduce redness and irritation.

Give these a try and let me know your thoughts. Also, if you think of something that should be on the list that isn't, let me know that as well. I will be doing another blog about blemish prevention, as well as a post about cleaners for acneic skin. Ciao ladies...xox

Jul 19, 2010

Dial Up Mascara???

I was wandering through London Drugs Saturday afternoon and I, of course, beelined for the cosmetics area. Now, this trip wasn't like any other, since I was with a great friend of mine and we were both a bit tipsy from drinking on the patio. (Well, me more so than her...) I ended up buying a lot of things I didn't really need...aka three more lip glosses in Coral...BUT I found the product that's the basis for this review: Almay One Coat Dial Up Mascara

It's a brand new product, just launched in June, that actually has an adjustable base. The point of the dial is to customize the amount of lash coverage you want; a remarkable idea if you ask me.

So, does it work???

It's a chunky tube that actually compresses internally, thus giving the dialing effect. It has a thicker brush ( not your standard mascara wand) that does appear to evenly distribute the mascara. Level 1 gives a nice dusting of mascara but not very dramatic. Level 2, again, same as before but it goes on a bit thicker. Level 3 is the only level worth using as it gives full lashes but not the volume.

Would I use it again?

Though the idea of the mascara is smashing, I am not sold on the product. I love full, dramatic and voluptuous lashes and it didn't happen with this product. I, also, despise a mascara that makes my lashes hard to the touch. (This can cause lashes to break or fall out.) Having said this, I will definitely stick with my Estee Lauder or Lash Stiletto!

Let me know your thoughts though. I am always eager to hear what others think....

Jul 17, 2010

Consignment Store Finds!!

Thrift and consignment stores are so much fun.

Yes, you have to scour over miles of racks, deal with the abnormal mothball smell and push mountains of seniors out of your way to ensure they don't snatch up your awesome find.

Seriously, though, is there really any other way to spend a day??? I didn't think so....

I was in a different part of the city and popped into a consignment store with a friend of mine. I was looking through the articles of clothes and, hiding on the wall at the very back of the shelf, I found two amazing handbags.

1. Lou Taylor Metallic Evening Bag. This bag is super cute. A lot smaller than I would typically go for but it was only $10. It is a solid silver metallic print with three interior pockets: two outer pockets and one inside pocket that closes with a gold button. All in all, I would say a great find.
2. Ralph Lauren Houndstooth Tote Bag. I adore this bag and am still
shocked that I only paid $35 for it. (Down from $100....still have no idea how I scored that.) Two small straps hold up the tote bag, though there is a large shoulder strap as well. One large pocket with zipper
access, which opens to a big tote with smaller pockets in the interior. It's black and white and it couldn't be cuter.

Just wanted to share with you some of my
finds. More to come for sure since I am going to be thrift shopping this week! xo

Jul 15, 2010

Guest Blog #1 - The Smashing Renate

Bonjour Product Fiends!!!

Here is the first of many guest blogs from my bestie, Renate, who is an amazing hair stylist. Feel free to email hair questions to her via cmwolthers@gmail.com as she will be doing a slot weekly... Now, without further adieu....

As a teenager, doing my hair, of course, was NOT at the top of my priority list. As most fine haired women, I battled with my hair from a very young age which meant usually just putting it up in one of those gramma clips... (no offense...but you know what I mean, grab twist clip.) Weren't they the highlight of the mid 90's !!

Until one day, I was introduced to the blow drier and round brush method! (Wow, I remember this day sooooooo clearly.) Not gonna lie, but learning how to use a round brush took a lot of patience, practice, and a few choice words that a lady shouldn't repeat!! Once I had that process perfected, I began to backcomb. (Seriously, the best thing ever!) I have used the same back combing method now for about 10 years , tweeking some parts of my daily routine of course, and introducing a flat iron definitely helped smooth those crazy fly aways.

We all want what we don't have: why wasn't I born with thick hair, curly hair, straight hair, or fine hair. Or why is it when I wear a ponytail all day, and then take it out, it has a horrendous bump? My fine haired ladies, have no fear!!! I have some great tips for you. I have learned that our type of hair holds great curl, unlike some other hair types, and it doesn't take much to make it straight because it already is. I guess my point is that I have straight, fine, lifeless hair. If I didn't use my volume spray on a daily, I would go as crazy as my hair. My recommendation for you is CHI volume spray. I use it on a regular basis and am absolutely in with love it. Its lightweight, and can be sprayed throughout the whole head for all around volume.

I don't know how many times I've been asked, "do you have a bumpit in your hair?" and my reply is always "no, hon, this is 10 years of practice" ........... Renate

Quel Est L'appret? Ummm, WHAT???

If this post title is completely foreign to you, have no fear my friends; all will be explained in due time. The title translates to "What is Primer?" and I was asked this quite some time ago by a great friend of mine (thanks Bronwen xoxo). Primers are a girl's secret weapon to smooth, silky, flawless skin.

Most of us women, me included, do not have picture-perfect skin. Common concerns are blemishes, redness, irritation, large pores and fine lines. (Almost of all of which I suffer from.) Back in the day we were stuck with using a moisturizer after our toner and then applying our make-up on a glistening face which cause runny-looking foundation and excess oil later during the day. Today your lives are going to change.

In addition to primer giving women the silky complexion we've always wanted, it also neutralizes your skin which minimizes the look of pores. Seriously, it's perfection in a bottle. Two brands I highly recommend are:

1. Clinique Pore Minimizer Instant Perfection. Goes on a cream which then has a matte finish. This product does give you a flawless finish and can actually be worn alone (without makeup) for the au natural girl. Make sure to use this product after moisturizer. Also, there is no setting time with this product as it blends in right away. I highly recommend this product for the woman with oily/combination skin.
2. Youngblood Mineral Cosmetics Mineral Primer. It starts off a very lightweight gel which then becomes a silky powder once applied. Once applied, it does a fantastic job concealing fine lines and enlarged pores. (Note for my oily girls, this product, though great, will not be best for an oily complexion. If you have sensitive skin though, you will definitely love this.)

Ensure that you give ample time for your primer to set. Once applied after moisturizer, give it some time to blend in before you put on your make-up.

Jul 14, 2010

Guest Bloggers

I was originally going to post something about Body Scrub today but wanted to open the airwaves to something different; something that gives others an opportunity to share their expertise with us. I am planning to have a series of guest blogs from some of my amazingly talented friends.

A little bit about my friends and family...My mom is a cosmetician, my sister is a hair stylist and my friends are hair stylists, make-up artists and estheticians. I think that it would only be fair to have them share their knowledge and tips with us. These posts will be coming up in the next few weeks and months.

I also wanted to open the blog to questions. If you have a product that you want a review on, need some help picking a new beauty product or want to see what my thoughts are on one of your favorites, please feel free to send me an email at cmwolthers@gmail.com

Can't wait to hear from my fellow product junkies!!!

Christina xox

Jul 13, 2010

Dry Shampoo for Yoo

I have officially been exposed to a whole new life changing beauty product!!!!

This new "thing" has quite literally changed my life, my boyfriend's life and my bathroom/vanity life. It's called Batiste Dry Shampoo.

I have short, choppy, extremely thick colored hair that styles heaps better when dirty. I don't typically wash my hair a lot because of it's texture (and because it's heavily colored) and therefore, am always looking for products that will take away lifelessness, bed-head and oilyness. I was using a different product for a little bit called 2nd Day Revitalizer by Marc Anthony BUT, because of my hair's texture, I found it to be extremely heavy and greasy.

After spending oodles of time perusing shops and aisles and reading a smashing blog entitled Hairdresser on Fire, I decided it was time to try some of this stuff so I grabbed two different types: Batiste and Klorane. I tried the Klorane first and didn't like the smell immediately. So I tried the Batiste the next day and have fallen in love. The smell was light and pleasant and definitely did exactly as the can said. This product is going to save hours of time spent styling, shampooing and drying!!! I highly, highly recommend it.
(Application: Hold can 30 cm from head, spray evenly. Rub into scalp and let sit for about 2 minutes. Comb or Brush out. Style as usual.)

Quick note: Don't use too much of the product. Seriously, you will have yucky looking hair and will not be able to get all of it out with your brush or comb. (Trust me...) Also, you can purchase Batiste at Shoppers Drug Mart for about $8.99

Jul 12, 2010

Beauty Tip #1 - Red Lipstick

Soooo, I love red. It is my favorite color for everything: purses, shoes, wallets, dresses, hair color...( I keep going on but you probably catch my drift.) My most favorite thing to wear right now is bright red lipstick and minimal eye makup. ( I am so glad to see that red lips are back with a bang...)

So, it has taken me a long time to perfect the "red pout" without using the infamous lip liner. Now, don't get me wrong, lip liner is a great tool, it's just not for me. I have never been great at putting it on and I can never blend it properly. Of course, use whatever works for you but here is what I do...

1. Pick your shade or a color that you feel comfortable, and awesome, wearing.
2. Use a concealer brush and dab concealer on the outside of your lip line, mainly below the lower lip. ( I use this, as well, to touch up after I apply the color, in case it bleeds.)
3. Use a lip brush with the lipstick color to outline the lips, instead of using lip liner.
4. Once step 3 is done, use the lipstick tube on your lips.
5. Blot after first application.
6. Repeat step 4.
7. If bleeding has occurred, use concealer brush and concealer to remove smudges.

*******Update: My smashing friend who is a Make-Up Artist wanted me to say that IF you choose to use a lip liner, ensure that it's a nude color. It will hold the color better and still give you a great lip line.... xoxox to Ariella

I never use lip gloss on top because I love the matte red look but use whatever you love!!!

Oh, I should also say that I am currently in LOVE with Youngblood's Crimson Lipstick, which is my go-to red....and I am sorry to report that it is discontinued. I will let you know of some other good colors in my next posts....

Thoughts, are you into red lips like me???

Jul 10, 2010

The Truth About Mascara

I can not leave the house without mascara.

I tried it once and felt so boring and plain that I walked into a shop, at night, with my sunglasses on. Granted, I wear sunglasses at night quite frequently, BUT I flat out refused to take them off this time. Now, don't get me wrong, I go without makeup periodically, but there is something different about not wearing mascara versus bronzer, blush or powder. I guess there are certain products one can't live without....
It has taken me years to compile a list of mascara's I heart and here they are....

1. Estee Lauder MagnaScopic Mascara is actually really good. I used this for years before branching into other brands and types and I chose this one because it was always consistent. The brush is really easy to use and does prevent clumping. (Unless you are using the tip of the brush a lot. If so, this will tend to cause clumping.) It does give volume, length and definitely creates fuller lashes.
2. Clinique High Impact Mascara is another one of my faves. This mascara is also good because it does create full lashes. Again, like with almost all mascara, be careful when using the tip of the brush, as you can get some clumping.
3. Maybelline Full n Soft is actually my favorite mascara right now. Yes, it's not department store quality BUT it does exactly the same thing as the Clinique brand and only costs about $5.99. Love this product and highly recommend it.
4. Lash Stiletto Voluptuous Mascara is one I use everyday. I will start with the Full N Soft as the first coat and then this as the second (and third). I ONLY use the Voluptuous Stiletto (red packaging) product as I disliked the original Lash Stiletto (black packaging). I will also say that this is not something I would use on it's own since it will add length but not the volume as it claims.

I am also veerryy lucky since I, naturally, have long long long lashes that curl. I have never had to use an eye lash curler or any lash primer for that matter. I do, though, need fuller lashes. That's why I tend to gravitate towards products that create the illusion of full lashes.

As always, tell me what brands you love and what products work well for you!!!

Jul 9, 2010

Exciting Bronzer News for My Chalky Sisters....

I was wandering through my neighborhood Sephora yesterday afternoon, just minding my own business, and you will never believe what jumped out at me? This (look left) amazing gift box filled with bronze shimmery goodness. Now, I am not one to actually put a tester on my skin, but I am so glad I did this time! I tested the Melted Beach Body Butter and as soon as I put it onto my Plastic Wrap arm, it was instantly transformed into a nice bronze color. In the gift set was also the Beach Glow Spray Oil (dry) that once rubbed in, creates a shimmery bronze color as well. Anyways, I love the Au Courant Liquid Bronzer, as you know, but give this set a try. It's only $33 for the set and they are going fassstttttt.....

Jul 8, 2010

Toners I Would DIE Without!!

I love skincare products, as we all know, BUT the act of actually cleansing my face bores me. I hate standing in the bathroom, running the water, drying my skin....blah, blah, blah. The whole ritual seems to irritate me. Having said that, I realize how important cleansing is and will ONLY go to bed with my make-up on if I am a bit tipsy and can't actually find the bathroom...(seriously, it happens). Though I dislike the ritual, I am in LOVE with three different toners right now.

1. Burt's Bees Rosewater and Glycerin Toner. This stuff is to die for. The smell alone makes me happy to tone my face. They claim that it's for sensitive and mature skin, but honestly, I have combination skin and adore it. It's revitalizing, calming and doesn't cause any irritation. I highly recommend it.
2. Boots Botanics Organic Skin Brightening Toner. Completely different from the one above but still one that I use as often as the Burt's Bees toner. This one is phenomenal when used in conjunction with the Skin Brightening Cleanser. (More to come about this in a different post.) This toner does as it says and you will notice a dramatic improvement in your skin's brightness. May not be great for sensitive skin as there is nothing calming about it. Still, I highly recommend it.
3. Sonia Kashuk Eye Make-up Remover. This is the best make-up remover I have ever used. (And trust me, I have tried over 20 brands.) This is great for all skin types and leaves the skin incredibly silky smooth. Now, I have this under toner because you can remove make-up with it and it leaves your entire face exceptionally clean and sweet smelling. (Having said that though, I would still cleanse and moisturize even if you use this as a make-up remover for your face.)
Alright, PRICING information. These products are actually relatively inexpensive which is a nice change. I purchase almost all my skincare from Target in the US since it's cheaper and you get free shipping if you spend a certain amount. (Keep in mind though, that they don't ship to Canada so it might be a good investment to get a PO BOX in the States.) You can also buy everything from Shoppers Drug Mart.

Jul 7, 2010


So, today was a nice and relaxing day at work and, because of this, (and that it was a friend's birthday) we all went out for drinks on our lunch hour. Just to prove how sunburned I actually get.. here are some photos.....

How embarassing, I know, and whether it was the prompting of my friend or the beverages we consumed.....here you go!!!

*******Update: This shows the importance of SUNSCREEN...I am typically good with always putting it on BUT who expects that lobster woman will emerge in less than an hour and a half.

To Tan or Not To Tan....?

I have been tanned only once in my life and that was when I was 7.

Every summer, my sister and I spent in Camano Island with our grandparents. It was here that we, usually the Plastic Wrap Sisters, developed our glowing tans and sun-bleached tresses. That summer went down in history, for me, as being the last, and only, time I tanned. From that point on, I become the human lobster. Every time I was in the sun, even for a short time, I burned. And I mean BURNED. And the worst part is, that the burn doesn`t even turn into a tan, I get red, peel and go back to being pasty white.....nooootttttt fair

As you now know, I am obviously in need of some type of `fake tan`. And, after trying hundreds of products, I have found the winner: Au Courant Platinum Metallic Bronzing Glow. Let me tell you, this has been my life saver. It goes on like a moisturer and stays on all day. Once you shower, off it comes. No muss, no fuss. It is an amazing product and I highly recommend it to anyone that doesn`t like the odd smell of tanning moisturizers or the harmful rays of tanning beds.

You can buy the Metallic Bronzer, online, from the Au Courant website at www.aucourant.com but, if you are not a fan of paying for shipping like me, you can buy it from any of the Absolute Spa locations.

And, as always, let me know your thoughts and, in particular, what tanning product you adore!!

Jul 6, 2010

Completely Product Obsessed

Okay, just so everyone knows, I am an absolute product junkie. Completely obsessed, over-the-top product whore.

It doesn't matter whether it's toner, scrub, mascara, lip gloss, eye liner, shampoo, perfume, hair masks, I want it all. I will spend hours searching for the right product on-line, reading reviews of exclusive product lines or combing the aisles in a shop to find the PERFECT lip gloss, mascara, conditioner...(you get the idea).

Though I love all products, as you can tell, I must say that my favorite, would-die-without cosmetic is lip gloss. I ADORE lip gloss. I have so many tubes, types and shades that I carry around in my bag, that I can never find the same tube twice.

Current favorites right now are:

1. Clinique Glosswear in Juicy Apple
2. Sephora Collection Ultra-Shine Lip Gloss in Hot Pink #13
3. Chanel Levres Scintillantes in Glossimer
4. Rimmel Shock Gloss in Amp'ed

Love to hear from you and what your must-have beauty products are!!!!

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