Archive | April, 2015

S.O.S. — I’ve “Hit Pan”!!!!

19 Apr

Running outIn the dark world of us makeup addicts, we often use a secret phrase: “I’ve hit pan.” This is a secret code us color junkies use to tell others that we have run out of a product we love. Usually us makeup lovers know when we are getting low on a fave and pick up a backup for a smooth transition when we run out. Of course, certain products we won’t stress too much about because, since makeup addicts are always trying new things, we may have already found a new love with a different brand of a former mainstay. But every glamour guru will have a few select items that are always–ALWAYS–around. And when we see the bottom, we tend to panic a bit. But we are professionals. We will fix it. And fast.

So, a few things started to get low–or worse–disappear this week in my makeup drawer. A couple I tried “alternatives” to, maybe to test the competition or save a buck or two. But the fact is that they are items I will be loyal to till someone says they aren’t around anymore. (*Gasp*–don’t even want to think about that!). Here is what I have/had to restock in my makeup drawer recently:

Lancome**Lancôme CILS Booster XL**: I never thought I needed a mascara primer…until I used a mascara primer! This was the first one I bought after a makeover day at a local department store. I bought it immediately. I used it only when I wanted really *POW!* lashes like for a night out or a dinner date. I started running low, plus it started to get some age on it, so I grabbed an inexpensive drugstore brand to see if I could save a few dollars with the same results. Yeah….no. The drugstore brand did nothing really–not like Lancôme’s did. It probably is the most expensive on the market, but you do get what you pay for. My lashes are longer, thicker, bolder when I use Booster XL. And it puts a nice barrier of Vitamin E between my lashes and mascara, keeping them healthy and preventing lash dry-out. Heading out tomorrow for a new tube! Macys.com, $25

Maybeline**Maybelline Fit Me® Shine-Free Foundation**: The weather here at home is (finally!) changing. Temperatures are changing and my j*o*b is throwing me a little stress. Let’s add a few hormone issues I’d prefer not to speak of, and the result is a skin texture and tone that is hard to work with. My winter moisture-packed foundation is too heavy; my powder mineral foundation is too light. So I dug out what I had put off to the side and found my Fit Me® foundation from last year. After using it just once this year, I knew it was now my go-to foundation for the season. After a week, I noticed my ‘swivel’ was tapped. I was at the end! Next day on my way to work, I made sure I stopped at my local drugstore to get another. My face looks smooth, natural, and the foundation controls oil, fading and streaking all day. I don’t have a lot of free time for makeup touch ups during the day–I want to do what I can to make sure my look stays put all day. This Maybelline foundation helps to make sure that happens! CVS, $8.99

Rimmel**Rimmel London’s Scandaleyes Waterproof Kohl Liner in Sparkling Black**: I did a whole eyeliner comparison last year–drugstores vs. department stores, waterproof vs. long wear, liquid vs. pencils. I think when it was all said and done, my go-to brand ended up being Rimmel’s Scandaleyes. The color variety was huge, the stay power was great, nothing smudged or ran ALL DAY, and oh–the price was EPIC. Even though I tend to always use black on my waterline with color underneath, I had began using the sparkling black because the hint of glitter softened the heavy black and gave it a nice glimmer. I ended up buying another one so I had two: one for home and a backup in the purse. Well, I switched them out when home’s got low and now sharpening is getting difficult again. So it’s time for a new full one–that kind, that brand, that color. Walmart, $3.97

image**Perfectly Posh’s The Daily Grind Body Coffee Scrub**: Okay, I have to be honest here. This is not the first time I have “hit pan” with this product. In fact? I think I’m probably on my 6th container of this little beauty. It doesn’t hurt that I’m a coffee fanatic. Then to find a natural bath product that does what I want with the feeling of bathing in an espresso is even better! The Daily Grind energizes skin and gets your blood pumping with a cup of coffee before you get out of the shower. It’s packed with the cleansing and rejuvenating properties of coffee, as well as clearing, anti-cellulite and energizing traits. This scrub cleanses as well as removes the dead skin cells keeping your skin soft, fresh and glowing. Oh, and did I mention it smells damn good? I don’t even want to think of this gem not ever being in my bathroom. I shudder at the thought. PerfectlyPosh.com or an Independent Represenative, $24

Simple**Simple Facial Wipes**: I will forever stand firm on something a friend told me years ago. I’m not sure if it’s true, but it was enough to scare the mascara off my eyes. “If you fall asleep with your makeup on, your face will age an extra six days.” Okay, ummm, NO! I’m fighting against time now and my age lying is getting pathetic even for me (although no one usually questions it.) I did a little reach on my own and did find articles that say not washing your face before bed WILL age your appearance. The good news? No one is sure how much. The bad news? Six days was the LOWEST number! Eeek! So, since then I try to remember to take off my face for the day with a nice gentle cleanser then treat it with a good serum. But, I will admit, I get tired, get upstairs in bed, then realize I forgot my bedtime facial. So, let’s just say I’m a bit lazy. If I’m in bed?…I’m in bed. I have phones, remotes, food, reading material and ice packs on a rough day. So, I figured if I can make sure I have a “stash” of goodies for lazy evenings, I can include skin care too. I have a little bag with skin care necessities: hand cream, cotton balls, mini eye makeup remover, trial sized night cream and eye cream, and my Simple Cleansing Wipes. They do the trick when I need to get the “crud” off and prepare myself for a night of cell rejuvenating. The formula doesn’t bother my sensitive skin, it gets off the toughest makeup, eye color, eyeliners and mascaras. They aren’t abrasive, they do the trick, they are easy to keep where I need them and they aren’t expensive. I have gone through two packs of Simple Wipes and a pack of a different brand. I went right back to Simple’s. They just did the trick–no fuss, no muss. And no more waiting…I need a new pack tomorrow! Walmart, $4.49

So that, my makeup beauties, is what it means to “hit pan”. I’ll be anxious to see if I find any other products this year that I will fall in love with, worthy enough to create chaos if I “hit pan”. I’ve tried a few new products recently: a new face wash, a perfume, new body cream, long wear mascara. Will any of them make themselves worthy to enter the “hit pan” elites? I don’t know yet, but I’ve got a lot of time ahead, a bunch of products to trial, and a whole lotta time to see what other items big named cosmetic companies come up with.. Let’s see if anything else in my makeup drawer becomes worthy to enter my “I hit pan” club soon!

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Rockin’ outfit for a casual Saturday. Leather jacket w/graphic top, jeans, boots, edgy accessories and flashy makeup tones.

18 Apr
Rockin' outfit for a casual Saturday. Leather jacket w/graphic top, jeans, boots, edgy accessories and flashy makeup tones.

An easy-going Tuesday outfit for spring! Simple jeans & tshirt, Chucks & an epic bag, highlighted by nice silver accessories and spring-toned makeup. Casual with an edgy? Perfect!

14 Apr
An easy-going Tuesday outfit for spring! Simple jeans & tshirt, Chucks & an epic bag, highlighted by nice silver accessories and spring-toned makeup. Casual with an edgy? Perfect!

Juicy Couture white top
$80 – harrods.com

GUESS blue jeans
lordandtaylor.com

Converse shoes
$99 – mytheresa.com

Hoop earrings
jcpenney.com

Lips makeup
sephora.com

Rimmel black eyeliner
$8.01 – asos.com

Whipped Shimmer Butter
bathandbodyworks.com

My skin has announced “It’s That Time Of Year”…

2 Apr

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Let’s follow that “mix ’em up” theme again today, shall we?

imageEvery once in a while–usually springtime–my face gets “grumpy”. High-end and drugstore makeups make my face itch. Some eye shadows and mascaras can make my eyes burn and water. Some moisturizers and serums make my face irritated. But what’s worse? The face and eye creams that are supposed to keep me looking young actually causing meto break out, get puffy and make me look old. Sometimes it can get so bad that it can even require me to take an anti-inflammatory medicine to calm it down. Sad to say?…I’m used to it. It goes with my auto-immune diseases. The products that can help a “normal” person the most can cause flares with me the worst. Most of the time, simple irritations can be triggered by simple seasonal allergies–new grass, budding trees, wild flowers growing. Sometimes but rarely it can be a food. Too often, however, it’s because I’ve taken a chance on a new product only to find out I can’t use it for whatever ingredient or additive it contains. At that point, it’s hard to fight the test of time while I watch my skin loose its youthful luster. Like Grumpy Cat?… I say phooey.

imageSo what do I do when my skin gets “irritable”? Well, I go back to the basics. Way back when I could barely use anything commercial, I made my own cleansers and creams with 100% natural ingredients to help wash, moisturize and fight aging without additives, perfumes, dyes, harmful chemicals, or worse–the “what the hell is that?” ingredients. And I got good at it! I did a lot of research and trial batches to find what would work the best. Eventually, my skin would calm down and natural-type skin care products from a store were okay to use again. But even now, when I hit a skin ‘flare’ for whatever reason, daily necessities like washes, masks and moisturizers can be put together with ease from simple home ingredients I always keep handy to get me through this irritating phase.

imageWhen it came to long-term anti-aging products however, it was the one thing I never really thought too much about. I figured a good moisturizer would be enough, but now I’m seeing I need just a bit more to fight the signs time. So after A LOT of research and a little bit of tweaking, I have managed to create a great night cream recipe that is easy to prepare and can sit next to my bedside or bathroom counter for a long time. Nothing in it can “spoil”. And seeing how little I use? I’m sure my 10 gram jar will last a long, long time. I will give you my recipe and why each ingredient is important and you can fight the test of time naturally too. If you are someone who is a little (or a lot) questionable about the chemicals and additives in your anti-aging creams, this is the thing for you. Let nature keep you young! Here’s what I’ve created:

SASSY AUBURN’S AGE-FIGHTING NIGHT CREAM
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 tsp organic virgin coconut oil
1 tsp beeswax
1 drop peppermint oil
1 drop grapefruit oil
1 medium sized drop of raw honey
1/3 tsp Bentonite Clay
2 capsules Vitamin E

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Purposes:
Extra Virgin Oil contains anti-oxidants which protects the skin from premature aging. People have been using for centuries. It also restores the skin’s smooth surface and prevents free-radical damage to the skin. Oh, and it’s easy to find anywhere!!

Organic Virgin Coconut Oil keeps the natural moisture in the skin with its fatty acids. It also contains Capricorn/Caprylic/Lauric acids. These three fatty acids have strong disinfectant and antimicrobial properties to keep the skin fresh and healthy, fighting off ‘nasties’ in the air.

Beeswax…oh those glorious bees! Because of those hard workers, beeswax helps our skin because it’s moisturizing, softening, and contains Vitamin A which is necessary to lock in your skin’s natural moisture. Beeswax is also one of the oldest healers known to man, and the wax can help repair small cuts and tears in the surface of the skin where fine lines can begin.

Peppermint oil is a natural skin soother and calmer. Grapefruit oil contains Vitamin C which helps brighten & nourish the skin. Plus they both smell naturally great together.

Raw honey has been known for over hundreds of years to heal the nastiest of cuts and wounds. Too much is a sticky mess, but just a good sized drop in the mixture helps to target little surface tears on the skin that can lead to deeper, darker wrinkles and blemishes.

Bentonite Clay has been known in history as the “healing clay.” The clay that actually comes from volcanic ash, actually expels toxins we take into our body or, in this case, pick up on our face. These can be residues of cleaning solutions, paint, unpurified water, etc. A mixture containing Bentonite Clay powder can rid these impurities from the skin’s surface–especially the face–where age can show the fastest. In addition to taking out the bad, it can also put in Bentonite’s good minerals. This include potassium, protein, calcium and so many others! It’s not easy to find, but many private herbalists can get it for you (it is on EBay too).

Vitamin E is kind of self explanatory. Vitamin E, a substance found naturally in many foods, carries tremendous benefits for skin cells. Through its antioxidant properties, topical vitamin E creams help decrease the roughness of skin, the depth of wrinkles, and the length of facial lines. Although many more studies must be done, some recent research shows that vitamin E may reduce the risk of UV-induced skin cancer as well.

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Okay, so now you’ve got the ingredients, the reasons you need them, and the knowledge that this is a healthy, natural nigh cream using basic things that have been used for ages to keep skin looking great. Ready to make a batch that will last you a LONG time without costing an arm & a leg? Let’s do this:


1) Shave approximately 1 tsp of beeswax off a cosmetic bar (available on a Ebay for cheap) into a small glass microwaveable bowl. (If you can, try to find honey in a comb-a local farm stand may have some-and chew up a large scoop. Don’t eat the wax–just chew it like gum. Ingesting natural raw honey in this form will help YOU fight against diseases and boost your immune system. You can then add the remaining wax pieces equal to 1 tsp to the mixture, just break them up into small pieces!)
2) Add the wax along with the olive oil, coconut oil, peppermint oil & grapefruit oil in the microwave on high for 30 seconds. Take out (Careful–HOT!!), stir. If wax isn’t melted, go another 30 seconds.
3) Next add the Bentonite Clay. If it turns into solid droplets in the mixture and won’t blend, put it back in the microwave and cook on high another 30 seconds. Carefully remove again (VERY HOT WAX!!) and blend the clay with a fork till its dissolved. Your cream will be a slightly cloudy yellowish white.
4) Add the Vitamin E capsules by puncturing them and squeezing them into the mixture before it begins to settle & thicken. Mix with the fork again. Throw out the empty Vitamin E “shells”.
5) Pour complete mixture into a 10 gram cosmetic jar or even a 4 oz. empty canning jelly jar. An empty, clean glass baby food jar works great too. I find glass is best to keep it fresh.
6) Put in fridge till it solidifies.
Afterwards, you can put the mixture in the bathroom or next to your bed for your nighttime skin routine. Nothing in it can spoil. It will last about a year.

That’s it. It might get hard with the wax (less creamy), but it will dissolve to the temperature of your hand. It’s easy to make with simple ingredients for pennies with the same results you might get from an $85 tiny jar of cream and unknown chemicals at the local department store. If it’s heathy enough to eat, I’m guessing it’s healthy enough to put on your face. Stay young and healthy without chemical irritants with an easy to make cream that keeps you looking & feeling like a million but only cost you less than a bottled water. And you don’t have to worry about funky ingredients you can’t pronounce. It’s au naturale. Perfectly pure!

Any questions or feedback?…. I want to hear from you!!

This non-irritating, natural, anti-oxidant skin care will make and keep you’re skin looking young and healthy, better than high-end, high cost retail jars. So, let’s go all Walter White in our private domicile, don’t be harassed, and cook up some fab anti-aging night cream! Good luck & have fun!
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