Archive | April, 2014

Old School vs. New Math?

28 Apr

imageIt might be getting close to the hot wedding season, but my reference to “something old” and “something new” actually has to do with my glamour ensemble, not bridal must haves. See, a few things in my daily routine and extensive closet are new items that I have recently discovered and have fallen in love with. Others are tough, tried and true, and have been in my glamour routine for some time. We all know it’s nice to find new items that exceed even our favorites, but there are just some things we cannot do without. What are yours? Here are a few if my new favorites and classic classic loves:

Something old…
imageMaybelline’s Eye Studio Master Drama Eye Liner – Okay, this product hasn’t been around forever and, in fact, compared to other liners, it’s kinda sorta new. However, many other variations of liners–pencils, liquids, gels, loose pigments–have come onto the scene very recently. I think I bought this for the first time about three years ago, and liked how it’s creamy yet long lasting formula had the stay power to get me through the day. It’s stated 16 hour wear holds true for me. Doesn’t irritate my eyes, no skipping or smudging. Even now, when it comes to my bottom lid waterline? It’s the only product I use. And although it comes in six shades, Midnight Master is my go-to color no matter what. (What can I say? I’m a black liner kind of girl!) $7.99

Something new…
imageLancôme Paris Artliner Precision Point Eyeliner – I will admit: I was never a liquid liner lover. I could not master that damn little paintbrush. An art student I was not. Then, about a year ago, a Lancôme representative gave me a makeover at Macy’s and showed me how to use all of these new products as well as explain the benefits to me. She gave me a dramatic caterer look with the Artliner and let me practice in the store. I left with three different colors, although Noir gets the most use. The foam-tipped brush makes it almost impossible to mess up, the formula dries fast, and lasts all day. Rich, deep color that glides on smooth and effortlessly. $30.50

Something Old…
imageTree Hut Shea Almond & Honey Body Butter – Anyone who follows my blog knows I’ve been a fan of this moisturizer for a very long time. In the cold, dry, winter months, this extra rich creamy moisturizer helps to penetrate into the skin for long-term hydration as well as protect the surface of the skin from drying elements. I love it most for how it keeps my feet smooth and soft avoiding dry calluses, plus it keeps my legs from getting dry and catching on delicate fabrics. I always have one jar in the house…right now I three in various rooms!! $5.08

Something new…
imagePure Romance Body Dew in Pink Cupcake – Okay, don’t laugh. I’m working the local tattoo expo a few weeks back when I decided to take a stroll and check out the other artists at the convention. All of a sudden I am approached by a woman in pink feathers asking I’d she could demonstrate her oil spray to give my tattoos added shine. She picks the Pink Cupcake scent and sprays my lotus side tattoo. I really had no chance to protest it happened so fast. But I noticed immediately that I: 1) loved the tasty scent and; 2) it was moisturizing but not a sticky oily feeling. Infused with pure almond oil, this product (often sold in an adult home-party setting) was something I actually fell in love with. I get the convenience of a light, moisturizing oil in a spray with a sexy smell that I really like. It’s not overpowering, it doesn’t conflict with my other perfumes, locks moisture into the skin, and has the benefits of pure almond oil. I’ll be using this after my showers when my skin needs a nice, light coat of moisturizer. (I did choose to pass on the available whips and fuzzy cuffs at this time.) $18.00

Something Old…
imageSephora Collection Waterproof Jumbo Liner 12HR Wear – Sephora jumbo eye pencils have been around ever since I bought my first one in NYC almost 10 years ago. Although they are called “liners”, their array of 28 different colors allows you to use them as a highlighting pencil, a contouring pencil or a liner. These pencils go one soft without tugging, and allow you a bit of time to smudge and design before they set. I love the fact there are mattes, frosts and high glitters so you can mix and match for a sexy, all-day look. Stays put, no running, no raccoon eyes. Simple, fun must-haves in hot colors! $14.00

Something New…
imageFor Goodness Grape Mineral Eye Shadows – I’ve always been a fan of loose mineral eyeshadows. Such a fan that my entire top drawer in my bathroom vanity is probably filled with over 100 different colors by various companies. When my girl at a For Goodness Grape said she was adding a mineral makeup line to her already fabulous selection of lip balms, scrubs & tints…I HAD to try them! Without fail, Lisa had put together a collection of her favorite new colors–bold and neutrals–for me to try. The minute I put the shade “Pearl” as my highlighter, I knew I was in love! The formulas are easy to work with, are fun to “foul” (put on wet) and blend easily to get the desired look and/or color you want. The shadows are a nice addition to For Goodness Grape’s already fabulous line of American made, boutique inspired beauty products. I use at least one FGG product every day, and now with these great, jazzy, affordable mineral products, I can see that number going up! Eyeshadows, $6.50

There are a few things that I have always on hand for my beauty routine, and now I’ve added a few more newer things that I just can’t live without. I seriously encourage you to give some if these a try and see if they make your “gotta love ’em, gotta have ’em” list. You may make a few of them ‘must haves’ as well!

“Now Why Don’t (S)he Write?” ~ Dances with Wolves, 1990

22 Apr

imageForgive me readers for I have dimmed. My writing is not as bright as it once was. In fact, it’s not even lit up. I have been negligent in my sharing of stories and experiences, and for that I am sorry. I could give you a list of endless excuses–my fish died; dropped my iPad in the toilet; a shark bit my arms while scuba diving; I bumped my head and thought I was Molly Ringwald for six months (look her up if you have to). You, my loyal readers, deserve nothing but the truth from me. And you shall get it.

I haven’t been writing because…

...I got a job.

Now, I’ll explain this a bit. I haven’t worked a 9-5 job in years. Years! Health and family issues had prevented me to hold a regular office job that allowed me to be flexible with my appointments, my health, my schedule. Then, on a whim, a friend of mine said he needed some help at his “office” and I said I could just be the missing link they were looking for. And I think I was. I’ve been there almost four months now and love it. I don’t get too tired, I love the people I work with, it keeps me out if trouble (haha!), and I’ve found an industry where I feel I’ve found my niche. So what am I doing? You may want to sit down for this…

I am the manager at my favorite tattoo shop!

Yeah, shocking to some I know. The little quiet girl in the back of business math class is happily working with a shop of men, watching some if the most artistic pieces of work get tattooed on some great people. Now don’t confuse my fashion and glamour art with tattoo art. I can match a top, jeans, shoes and accessories to make any girl turn heads. But, I admit, I can’t draw a tree with a crayon. No art class ability at all. That’s ALL my daughter. I know that creating and designing in the fashion and glamour industry is an art, and I guess that does help me somewhat in my job. But to put an idea from mind, to paper, to body, with ink is nothing I would ever attempt. Ever. And for that my artists are happy.

With this new endeavor in my life, what could I possibly have to write about? Oh, let me tell you, I have something MAJOR to write about: convenience. I have hardly ANY free time now. I need skin care that is easy but works good–just a couple of products that do A LOT. My skin is more tired, lacking elasticity, uneven toned. Plus, now I need to find makeup that goes the distance–can be applied quick & easy, doesn’t fade, won’t smudge or flake. Seems like a heavy order, but with how busy us women are nowadays is that REALLY asking too much?

So, with that tall order, I have managed to condense and simplify my day and night skin care routine. And, I have to say, I’m pretty happy with how my skin is looking. I’ll admit, early on in my first month of working, I looked like hell. I seriously thought if I was going to look as old as I really was (haha!) this J-O-B thing might need to be reconsidered. But I readjusted some of the products I used, got things smooth and even, and had my skin not looking as tired as I really was! Now you ask, “What did she add? What is she using?” Well here are a few of the things that I have found in regards to skincare that I now use quickly and faithfully:

20140422-001744.jpg**Lancôme Paris Bi-Facial Double Action Eye Makeup Remover**
Fact: I do NOT have time to mess around trying to get off my waterproof, smudge proof, 24 hour stay put eye makeup. I want to wipe a cotton ball across my eyes and quickly get off everything without having to scrub like I’m cleaning a burnt frying pan. Can’t. Be. Bothered. The Bi-Facial Eye Makeup Remover gets it ALL off. One cotton ball, done. That’s what I need, that’s what I want. $28.

20140422-001752.jpg**Lancome Créme Radiance Clarifying Cream-to-Foam Cleanser**
I’m not on a Lancome bandwagon here, but I got a sample of this cleanser when I bought my eye makeup remover and fell in love with it immediately. Ever since I had to deal with oily skin for many years, I grew to appreciate that feeling of tight, clean skin. Now that my skin is more normal, that feeling usually indicates a harsh cleanser that can be drying to the skin. Not the Créme Radiance. It’s a light, naturally scented creamy cleanser that lathers up easy. Wash the face and neck, rinse it off, and you will notice immediately it feels free of all nasties. It cleans deep without drying. It’s quick too. One wash and rinse and dirt and makeup of all kinds are gone. Easy peasy. $25.

20140422-001759.jpg**L’Oreal Paris Youth Code Texture Perfector Serum Concentrate**
Serums are big–HUGE!–right now. There is one out there for any and ever skin problem you may have. You can pay an exorbitant amount of money for a big-named serum that does it all or spend a little money on several different serums that may do what you want. There are a lot of different options. I found, myself, that what I really wanted was something that helped reduce the appearance of large pores, fine lines, uneven skin texture and tone. After a magazine article caught my eye and a bit of some online research, I found this product really did what I needed it to. What’s even better? It did it all at a price that didn’t break the bank. ONE drugstore-level product that did show an improvement in my skin after a short period of time. Bingo. $24.99.

20140422-001806.jpg**L’Oreal Paris Youth Code™ Day Lotion SPF 30**
Okay, so when it comes to hydration and SPF day protection, I’m sticking to the Youth Code line. I believe these two products compliment each other and work together to give you the best results. The Day Lotion is potent but lightweight and oil-free. It protects your skin from harmful UVA and UVB rays, plus boosts the skin’s regeneration process to bring the young, healthy skin to the surface. I hate a heavy lotion feel on my skin, and this does not give me that feeling at all. And my sensitive skin has no issues with it either. Love it. $24.99

20140422-001821.jpg**Say Yes to Blueberries Deep Wrinkle Night Cream**
It has become obvious (or if you didn’t know, you do now!) that wrinkles originate from dry, dehydrated skin. It is essential that those of us with oily skin hydrate our skin and bodies–inside and out–and those of us with dry skin hydrate AND moisturize. Even though my skin can be oily one day and dry the next, the fact remains that it is very sensitive and products with “funky” ingredients don’t always make my skin happy. The Say Yes To line of products isn’t just natural, “it’s super natural”! Each product they produce is at least 95% natural so it would be safe in your body as well as on it. Earth friendly, the blueberry Night Cream has ingredients such as blueberries for anti-oxidants, Wild Acacia to tighten skin and reduce wrinkle depth and Cupuacu Seed Butter to richly hydrate and plump the skin. Let the cream do all the work naturally while I sleep! $19.99

20140422-001814.jpg**Ole Henriksen Ultimate Lift Eye Gel**
So now I’m working during the day. I’m looking at smartphones, iPads, laptops, TVs, appointment books, you name it. At the end of the day my eyes are TIRED! Ole’s Eye Gel is just what the doctor ordered to use before bed. This incredibly soothing and firming eye gel contains calendula and cucumber which reduces puffiness and dark circles when used regularly. My peepers are thankful for this little beauty right before bed and first thing in the morning. $38.

There. I think I made up for a little bit of lost time with this post, yes? Simply stated, I have managed to find six products that I can use morning and night that keeps my skin fresh, smooth and young looking. The routine isn’t complicated, the products last a long time and won’t empty your pockets either. So if you are looking for a bare minimum skin care routine that will continue to keep you looking your best, I highly recommend checking out these fabulous products.

Now, if you will excuse me, I am off to bed. Visions of tattoo machines will buzz in my head. (Plus that damn new alarm clock sure does ring early!)
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