Tag Archives: beauty

Congrats To Our “Grape” Contest Winner!!

2 Aug

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First, let me say “thank you” to all my fans and followers who entered our “Grape Contest” for the ForGoodnessGrape lip care package. The flavors everyone came up with were so unique and awesome. I’d use them all if they were available!

I am so happy to announce that the winner of our contest is Denise Lopez! Denise said she would create the flavor “Pumpkin Marshmallow” for her lip balm. What a tasty combo, especially with fall on its way. Hmmm…. I wonder if we can get Lisa to make that one special for the season?

As soon as I hear from Denise, I will be sending out her ForGoodnessGrape goodie bag: A lip set containing a lip candy lip balm and sugary lip scrub in Lemon Cupcake; plus, since those lips will be looking and feeling fabulous, I am also adding a “Kate” Lip Tintx–a peachy-pink moisturizing lip tint with a hint of golden royalty!
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Again, congratulations to Denise! Please share your experience with ForGoodnessGrape’s products after you have had a chance to enjoy them!!

(Below you will find the entry names and the random selector’s pick.)

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Sassy’s Having A “Grape” Contest!!

8 Jul

imageOkay, I am sure all of you were so excited about my ForGoodnessGrape lip products review that you grabbed your laptop and ordered your favorite balms, scrubs and tints in seconds. Right? RIGHT? ……..WHAT? You didn’t? OMG, what is wrong with you people! I ordered my faves ASAP and they came today! I’ve been leaving random flavors around the house, in my purse, in my jeans, etc. just so I know I’ll always have one nearby. Now you can’t say you did the same did you? Tsk tsk.

Listen, Sassy is going to help you out a bit here. Don’t say I never do anything fun, okay? I am going to give you the opportunity to WIN a set of FGG’s top products to get your lips into phenom shape this season. ONE lucky winner will receive FGG’s most popular flavor–Lemon Cupcake–in a lip candy lip balm and sugary lip scrub. Plus, since those lips will be looking and feeling fabulous, I am also adding a “Kate” Lip Tintx–a peachy-pink moisturizing lip tint with a hint of golden royalty! I have these goodies myself and I absolutely LOVE them all. And I know you will too!

So, you want to win? Follow the instructions EXACTLY and your name will be entered into the drawing! Winner will be chosen randomly by an online program on JULY 29, 2013. (If any requirement is missing, sorry…your entry will be void.)

Here’s what you have to do:

1. FOLLOW SassyAuburn on Twitter here: https://mobile.twitter.com/sassyauburn (@sassyauburn)
2. FOLLOW ForGoodnessGrape on Twitter here: https://mobile.twitter.com/4goodnessgrape (@4Goodness Grape)
3. LEAVE A COMMENT BELOW answering this question: If you could create your own lip balm flavor, what would it be?? (I’ll even throw mine in to get you started!)

That’s it! Simple huh? If you DON’T have a Twitter account, you can “Contact Sassy” above and I will let you know what you can substitute that with.

So, you ready to play? I am SOOO excited to see what awesome lip balm flavors you come up with! Think fruits, think candies, think cookies, think cakes! Blend up your fave and get entered for a chance to win my Lemon Cupcake Shimmer Set! Remember contest ends on 7/28/13 @ 11:59pm EST, so get entered soon!

GOOD LUCK SASS-INISTAS!!

Sassy Thinks It’s The Best Lip Balm…EV-AH!

2 Jul

imagePinterest and Etsy have become the hot media outlets where you can share your handmade products and recipes with the rest of the world. Seriously, what a fabulous idea. You post how you made that delish chocolate peanut butter banana mousse in a blender in less than 10 minutes and I’ll show you how to braid leather and glass into a couture bracelet in a day. (Please don’t ask me for the directions to either. I have no clue.) My personal DIY abilities are quite limited. I can FIX anything. I can even make the basic better. But to CREATE? I can take a top, pants, shoes, bag and accessories and CREATE an outfit. But that’s even pushing it. I have the utmost respect for those who can create. Designers, tattoo artists, builders. And if you can create something for fun that ends up being really good–like sellable good? Sweetheart, you’ve made your mark!

A friend of mine, Doreene, has been raving to me about these lip balms that she got from Etsy for a while now. She knows my life revolves around fashion and beauty and said I HAD to try these best lip balms ever. I didn’t want to pop her bubble, but do you KNOW how many lip balms are on the retail market? Gazillions!! So, what made these special? But Doreen pressed on. I couldn’t let it go–Doreen said I HAD to try them! Okay, okay… I am a tester at heart, and an honest one at that. So you want to know what I think? Sit down and be ready because I WILL tell you.

Let me give you a brief background of the products: “ForGoodnessGrape’s” (FGG) Philosophy is simple – This is the last stop on your quest for the BEST LIP BALM! As stated on their website, “products are made with high quality ingredients and hand blended in small batches resulting in fresh high quality beauty products. Each has a combination of at least 3-4 different highly moisturizing butters and 2-3 different superior skin softening oils.” As a victim myself of chronic chapped lips, and a strict studier of oils and butters, I knew already this company had a smart grip on what they were doing from just what I read.

With a ton of questions and a lot of curiosity about the products, I figured I would touch base with Lisa, the contact person at ForGoodnessGrape.com. I explained to her who I was, what I did, and that I was told her fabulous products needed to be exposed which is where I came in. Lisa is a doll to work with if I have a question, she is right there with an immediate answer. I asked for a couple of samples of her best selling products which she sent me… quickly and over-abundantly!

My samples came with their three favorite items (well, for me): Lip Balms, Lip Tints and Shimmers, and Sugary Lip Scrubs. The packaging was simple but “cozy” (if that makes ANY sense to you), the items arrived well protected, and in fact they didn’t seem “handmade”. I easily could see them in a drug store retail environment, but I liked the fact I could look at the ENDLESS list of goodies online, changing my mind (and shopping cart) every other second if I chose. I’ll break down my thoughts on each…

Lip Balms: FGG balms have just about every flavor imaginable. No, seriously. You usually don’t get moisturizing/healing ingredients in a flavor you like enough to use often to help your lips heal. Plus, all items are handmade to order. No stale products from shelves like many mass marketing names do. Your order was made with you in mind. They contain 3-4 different moisturizing butters and 2-3 skin softening oils to keep your lips soft and silky. Sassy’s suggestion? Buy at least 3-5, and put one everywhere! I have one in my purse, one in my makeup drawer, one in my car, one next to my bed and one I can throw in my pocket if I am on the run. If you want them all the same favor?…that’s up to you. But variety is the spice of life, so I have favorites like lemon cupcake (a must have), cake batter and kahlua and cream. Yum!
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Lip Tints & Shimmers: There are times when we want a hint of color with a lip product that keeps our lips soft and smooth at the same time. Lipsticks have a tendency to be drying, even after going on moist. That’s why FGG Lip Tints & Shimmers really caught my eye. I am so lost with lip products. Some are long-wearing but drying. Others tug and hurt my already chapped lips. Others are so focused on being “moisturizing”, that they slide off or transfer almost immediately. And this one company who had my hopes up with “baby” -feeling lips was unfortunately a fail when it came to lasting tints and softness. A lip tint–with enough “couture” color to stand out but the right formula to keep lips soft–was something that grabbed my interest right away. I was sent a sample of “Bitten” which was a soft, true red right out of the ‘old days’. “Mystery and Macabre” is a dark red tint that definitely wears more bold and dark than “Bitten”. I tend to use “Bitten” for daytime/casual wear, and “Mystery and Macabre” for evening events. I liked them so much I ordered four more in a variety of colors today. It’s also nice to know you can blend tints to come up with a shade just for you! Hooray for FGG Lip Tints–two great products in one simple tube!

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Sugary Lip Scrubs: Oh, people…. let me tell you this is the lip scrub to end all lip scrubs. For years, I’ve been making my own lip scrubs, with exfoliating and healing ingredients. So when I saw that something that I myself had been making had been improved to store in a lip balm holder, in flavors I loved?… I was impressed. You could carry it with you as needed, as well be appealing to the eyes, nose and taste buds! (Yes, you can lick the excess off the tube!) Lisa sent me “Cherry Vanilla” and at first I was a little sad. I’m just not a big cherry-flavor fan. But it STILL was the first item I had to open and try because I had to see how it worked. And it DID! Not only do the various sugar grits rid the lips of dry skin, but its base is moisturizing and its flavor yummy!! I cannot WAIT to get more of these. Listen!—Sassy lesson coming here!–No matter WHAT you use on your lips for color or gloss (or especially if you use nothing,) you need a good lip exfoliant to use 1-2x a week! Nothing will ruin a great makeup look than blotchy, scratchie, ouchie lips. Scruff them off, then balm them up! FGG Lip Scrubs will be your new BFF.

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Okay, so if you can’t tell, I’ve found some of my new favorite lip products right here at ForGoodnessGrape. It’s nice to be discovering some of my new favorite beauty products coming from small local or home-based businesses. I won’t hesitate to pay a little more if I love what I get, it exceeds even my expectations, and helps us friends out here at home! I am happy and proud that ForGoodnessGrape has made that list for me. Welcome to my glamour-ama, Lisa!

Find ForGoodnessGrape at…
Main Shop: http://www.ForGoodnessGrape.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/4goodnessgrape
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/4GoodnessGrape
Blog: http://www.confessionsofalipbalmaddict.com/

(Flavor and Fragrance List can be found on my Blog here: http://www.forgoodnessgrape.blogspot.com/p/forgoodnessgrape-fragrance-list.html)

Sassy's Summer Sampler

Don’t miss the opportunity to get the “Sassy Summer Sampler” from ForGoodnessGrape named just for ME!
Just click the picture to go to this HOT deal!
(Pssst….check back very soon for a special treat for lip balm addicts everywhere!)

Sassy’s Thought of the Day

30 Jun

imageWe did not change as we grew older; we just became more clearly ourselves.

~ Lynn Hall

OCC Lip Tars & Armour Lip Glosses from LeCosmetique

14 Jun

imageIt is not a surprise that color cosmetics are strongly judged by customers based mainly by two things: the strength of the pigments (base colors) in the product and how long these colors last without reapplication. These qualities are important in general, every day makeup as well as performance makeup used in TV, films and stage. Ever since I began my fascination with makeup years and years ago, I have seen some make ups go from lasting 20 minutes to wearing 24 hours. Companies know our time is precious and limited so the less touch ups we have to do during the day (or night), the better. Not only do cosmetics wear longer in general, but the colors and features are more vibrant. There are no more days of just jet black liner, mascara, powder blue eye shadow and fuchsia lipstick. The colors, styles and features are endless. And if you know your stuff? You can create yourself a look prettier than a peacock!

Recently, I saw an add for a cosmetic company called LeCosmetique. This company sells professional makeup supplies for makeup artists as well as makeup fanatics. One item they feature is a product they sell called “Lip Tars” by Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics (OCC). Since I began blogging, I have seen lip tars here and there, but didn’t know what made them different from other lip colors. It seems that lip tars are HIGHLY pigmented and as the product itself wears down, the stain from the pigments keep the colors going strong. Because lip tars are oil based and not waxed based, they HAVE to be applied with a brush which conveniently comes with each one ordered. (FYI, I tell all my Sassinistas to put on ANY colored lip product with a brush–tars, lipsticks, tinted balms or even glosses.) Using a brush helps to keep the product from bleeding into the feathered cracks around your lips. It also helps to “press” the color into your lips, staining them, to make it last longer. You can even buy retractable lip brushes to use while you’re out and not mess up your purse or makeup bag.

Being a lip color addict, I have to admit that these “tars” intrigued me. They were packaged like some cream eye shadows are so it was hard to conceive them being like a manageable lip color. I asked LeCosmetique if they would be willing to let me try one, just to be able see what it was like compared to other lip glosses or lipsticks. They were more than happy to send me not just one but a couple of their favorite products to let me play with and see what I thought in comparison to other retail-store products. (LeCosmetique store is only online.) I was thrilled when I saw they sent me four products to test out–two OCC Lip Tars and two Armour Moisturizing Lip Glosses. Oh yeay…time to play makeup!

The first products I tried were the Lip Tars. It only took one ridiculous application to realize immediately two things: 1) the colors are very, VERY highly pigmented; and 2) a little goes a long way. Since each lip tar comes with its own brush, I highly recommend not interchanging the brush with its color. Now that’s not saying that you shouldn’t combine lip tars to create your own unique colors. In fact–just the opposite! It’s fabulous to have a pallet of lip tars to blend up a color that works perfectly for your color theme of the day. Use just a dot, blend it in thoroughly, then add more if you want a bolder color. Seriously though, listen to Sassy–APPLY ONE SMALL DOT AT A TIME! When you realize how very little you need to get the bold long lasting color you want, you’ll realize that one tube of OCC Lip Tar will most likely last the rest of your life. Really… I’m not kidding. If you do use a lip brush to blend several colors, make sure you wash the brush out as soon as you’re done with a little eye makeup remover and gentle cleanser. That way you won’t have any straggling color mixing in with your new one.

The two OCC Lip Tar colors I was sent were Harlot and Clockwork. Harlot is a BRIGHT fiery red that is neither warm nor cool. It is a straight up neutral red that you can wear alone for an old Hollywood look that is so in style right now. Or, if you wish, you can tone it up or down with other Lip Tars to give you a warmer or cooler tone. It is not easy to find a true, neutral, bright red lip color but you get it with Harlot. Being a redhead, I admit I was a little intimidated by its boldness. I had never worn a red that bright before! But I found if I applied the Lip Tar, blotted the oil, and reapplied if necessary, the color gave me a nice red tint to my lips which didn’t look overbearing. Nice! The other color I was sent was Clockwork which is a rich terra cotta shade with vivid orange undertones. With the warmer temps and my hair being richly red, this color looked great on me. Although its base notes are warm, the shade can be “pressed” into a long lasting neutral shade that can look good with all fashion shades. It can also be used very lightly to give an almost nude hue. A great color for a day of errands or light enough to wear when you want to bring attention to your emphasized eyes so they won’t collide with your lips.

I really liked how the Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Lip Tars looked and felt on my lips. They gave me a great base color and allowed me to jazz them up if I wanted with different shades of glosses (read below) for some high shine and pizazz. I couldn’t stress enough the importance of using a lip brush when applying the OCC Lip Tars. It’s also great to know that the Lip Tars are made in the USA and are both vegan and cruelty free. Yeay OCC and LeCosmetique!
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In addition to the highly pigmented OCC lip tars, LeCosmetique sent me two of their Beauty Lip Glosses by Armour. These are different from the Lip Tars because the Lip Glosses long-wearing formula is more moisturizing with a base of shea butter, avocado, mango and olive oil, grape seed oil and vitamin E. These great glosses come complete with a doe-foot applicator and go on bold–but not as bold as the Lip Tars. They are long wearing but super moisturizing which I LOVE. I was sent two shades of glosses–Gypsy and Hello.

Any fan of the 80’s will be thrilled to hear that the Gypsy Lip Gloss was, in fact, named after the popular Fleetwood Mac song. This gloss is a soft sheer peach with tiny specks of gold shimmer. I love that I can wear it by itself as a long-wearing, every day color. It has a light vanilla/grapefruit scent which isn’t over-bearing. Want to go bolder? Kick up your favorite Lip Tar shade a notch by topping it with this high shimmery shine. Gypsy is truly THE perfect nude shade to do just that! Then there is Hello. When I first saw this color as I took it out of the package, I thought, “Where the heck am I ever going to have the opportunity to wear this color?” I am a RAGING redhead and this gloss screams bubblegum pink with TONS of pigment. Sooooo not me! But you know what? … I was VERY pleasantly surprised! It’s light and bright, and it is one of THE hottest shades this season. Vanilla & grapefruit scented, this naturally based, long wearing, Rock ‘N’ Roll lip gloss is a great addition to your lip color pallet. Named after an ode to Hello Kitty and 1960’s Hello Magazine, this pink is without a doubt a must-have this year. Easy does it, though. The color is bold and it is better to dot it on with the applicator then blend in with your fingertip then to swipe it with the applicator. THEN you can add more if you want more pop! Like you don’t have enough reasons to love OCC Lip Tars and Armour Lip Glosses already, there’s more: they are both paraben free and do no animal testing….ever!
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The main thing I really liked about Armour Lip Glosses from LeCosmetique are that I can get a rich, long-lasting color with moisturizers and shine in ONE easy-to-carry product. We all know many big named cosmetics offer these things but not all in one tube. Sometimes you need as many as four! Well hellz bellz, I ain’t got time for that! The more simple you can make my routine, the better. And this gloss is certainly simple!

I am already putting together my next order to LeCosmetique for more Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Lip Tars and Armour Lip Glosses right now! The thought of mixing and blending for some unique, long-lasting colors sounds exciting and fun! Plus it’s nice to know I am helping support local companies here at home that provide excellent products that are environmentally friendly. I definitely suggest you go and check out the numerous products that LeCosmetique has to offer. Whether you work on a big make up or cosmetology job level or just want a few quality items for your personal collection, I have no doubt you will find something you will like with LeCosmetique.

Check out LeCosmetique’s site HERE

This is me wearing OCC's Lip Tar in "Harlot" and Armour Beauty Lip Gloss in "Gypsy", both from LeCosmetique.

This is me wearing OCC’s Lip Tar in “Harlot” and Armour Beauty Lip Gloss in “Gypsy”, both from LeCosmetique.

Must Haves In May

5 Jun

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I hate May.

How is that for an opening remark? I really don’t think any month tears me up more than May. I have lost several close relatives in the month of May, the weather is so unpredictable, allergies are brutal and… oh, let’s not forget the best of the best… my birthday is in May. Getting another year older always puts a smile on my face….NOT! I hate getting old and will fight ANY signs of it as much as possible–mind, body & soul. Which is probably why most of my fab finds this month will help me stay 29…again!

So what are my new favorite makeup and skin care items I found this month? Read on and find out:

image1. Lancôme Visionnaire – A few of the tell-tale signs of your real age is what begins happening to the skin on your face and neck. Fine lines appear, pores look larger, face takes on an uneven skin tone. Everything that screams old. Since cosmetic procedures are not an option to me (don’t know if I would even if I could), I always read about the latest products to fight the signs of aging. My friend Lisa who is a manager at the local Macy’s said I HAD to try this product for a couple of weeks and gave me a few samples of the Visionnaire serum. My current night cream was getting low so I thought it would be a good time to try it out. I had been using a night gel so this Lancôme Serum felt really nice to put on. It absorbed quickly with no tight or sticky feeling. I already notice my skin tone is evening out, and my pores and fine lines seem less noticeable. Boo-Yah! Just what I am looking for. The only down side it’s pretty expensive, but a little goes a long way and I believe the bottle I got will last at least six months to a year. That’s a good investment in younger looking skin. I top it with my favorite moisturizing night cream and let nature do the rest! ($89 [1oz], Macy’s stores & online)

image2. L’Oreal RevitaLift® Miracle Blur – Okay, true story: I was asked to be a product tester for this product early in the month. I read all the info, used it as directed, but I personally didn’t think I saw the results I was supposed to get, so I tossed it aside after a week. Blur is not a moisturizer, Blur is not a foundation, and it is supposed to do more than just a primer does. But it just didn’t seem to give me what i wanted. Then, like only NY can do, the weather did a complete 180, turning not just warmer but flat out HOT! I realized I needed something to keep away the makeup melt-aways and nasty shine. A product that did that PLUS help me with a broad spectrum SPF would be really great. Hmmmm. Funny–those are things that the new product Blur promised. Okay, lets try this again. Now, the directions say you should apply Blur after your moisturizer and before your foundation. When I did that, I didn’t really get the look I wanted. But when I used a little less and applied it OVER my foundation, I got the look I loved with lasting results I wanted. Sometimes I even blend a bit of my mineral foundation into it in the palm of my hand with the Blur which gives me a nice, all-day matte look. Sometimes things just need another chance and a little adjusting. We hope our serums will work fast, but if they don’t do the job 100%, this will hide that little percentage it missed! ($24.99, most drug stores)

image3. Yes to Grapefruit Brightening Facial Towelettes – Obviously I have an OCD issue with the evenness and tone of my skin. I don’t want blotchy-ness and I don’t want scars from my teen years. If I could get my skin to brighten and even-out where I would need minimal to no foundation, I’d be thrilled. These towelettes take off all my makeup with a gentle textured no-rinse wipe. I was worried my sensitive skin might find it contained a bit too much acid from the grapefruit, but my skin tolerated the wipes just fine. I do feel some tingling after using them, but nothing that irritates or breaks out my face, more like a clean feeling. Oh and I love the scent! These are awesome for those “I’m too tired to take my face off” nights. Just leave a pack in the bed stand for just that! Congrats to Yes To for another fabulous line of products!!($5.99, most retail stores)

image4. Jimmy Choo’s “Flash” Parfum – Okay, so a new scent may not make you look younger, but it can definitely make you feel younger. And isn’t that what counts? This second fragrance from shoe expert, Jimmy Choo, has a pop to it that just takes the wearer’s charisma to a whole new level. The perfume caught my attention on a scratch & sniff page in one of my favorite magazines. (“Samples sell!!”) I INSTANTLY fell in love with it and the search was on. I was able to snag a mini bottle on EBay till I could get a regular sized bottle. This is truly one of those WOW! scents. Notes of pink pepper, strawberry and tangerine open you senses to a rush of power, allure and sexiness that you can even see within the person wearing it. It is very new, so watch for it. I think you hear more about it in the months to follow. ($55.00 [1.3 oz], Nordstrom’s and Nordstrom’s online)

image5. benefit’s They’re Real! Mascara – I am embarrassed to say how many mascaras I have featured on my blog as the greatest, best, advanced, favorite new product I’ve ever tried. Especially since I’m going to do it again. Ok, Sassinistas…. what do I always say about samples? (Look above, silly!). The sample of this mascara was actually the birthday gift to Sephora Insiders, so I picked mine up when I stopped in the store a few weeks ago. Okay, nice, a cute mascara, I’ll try it someday. Well, that day came while my husband was out of town recently and I had nothing to do with my free time except try makeup looks out of my glam mags. I grabbed a few of my fave products from the bathroom including “little” items that were easy to carry. I grabbed this mascara since the mini tube was easy to handle. I knew as soon as I put the mascara on a few of my lashes that is was really different. The “brush” coated each lash more like a comb, separating and plumping each lash. Seriously, they chose a great name for the product because it makes your lashes so lush, they almost look fake. As full as they were, removal wasn’t that difficult at bedtime either. I cringe to think about adding another mascara to my beauty drawer, but dang! I have GOT to get this one!! ($23.00, Sephora stores and online)

And there we have it! It may not be my favorite month of the year but trying new products kept my mind and writing hand busy. Phew, no doubt…. May was BUSY!! Soon, I’ll be talking about hot summer items that you’ll want to have on hand (and feet), so keep reading to learn about “summer must have’s” in your closet, beach bag, makeup drawer and on your bathroom counter. Is there anything YOU want to know about: Hot nail colors? Must-have hair products? Stylish shorts? Summer accessories? Skin tamers? Ask me! I’d love to do a blog post where I can help my readers with their fashion & glamour questions. Don’t wait… send them in!!!!

Drug Store Items Tattoo Owners Must Have

25 May

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Ok, you’ve heard it all about tattoos this month. The who’s, the what’s, the where’s and the why’s. So now it’s the time where I do a little product recommendation. Usually, after you get your ink, your artist will give you enough ointment (A&D usually) to get you through its healing time. Always remember, a packet of ointment goes a long way–“you don’t have to save the world with the stuff.” But soon after, you will need some basic drugstore necessities to keep your ink at its best. Here are the top items you should get even before you get the art:

image1. Antibacterial Soap. Sounds like a given but you need to put a little thought into this. Bath and Body Works lovers, you’re going to need to slow it down for a while. When it comes to a good antibacterial soap, less is best. In fact, less is NECESSARY. No dyes, no perfumes, no foo foo flowers. Soap, people. Just. Plain. Soap. Save the grapefruit and sweet peas for after you’re healed. Now? Just the basics. Sassy suggests:
Dial Original Antibacterial Foaming Hand Wash or Colgate-Palmolive Antibacterial Soap

image2. A Good Lotion. Once you’ve healed, it’s imperative you keep the skin soft. The softer it is, the truer the color and design will stay. Again, perfumes and dyes are drying and you want to avoid anything that’s going to tighten up the skin. Sure, there is nothing wrong with wearing your favorite lotion, fragrance or glitter where it makes you feel sexy. But if where you feel sexy is now covered with a big, plasma-draining rose (sorry so graphic), you are going to want to avoid to avoid putting it there for at least a few months. Definitely put the moisturizer on before bed too. That’s when skin cell turnover is usually at its fastest. Sassy suggests: Eucerin Original Moisturizing Creme and Curel Fragrance Free – Original Lotion for Dry & Sensitive Skin

image3. A damn good sunscreen. This is where things get a little tricky. Because your skin is essentially burned when it is tattooed, it can easily burn more when it is exposed to direct sunlight. Wearing a good sunscreen over your ink is essential, especially if you cant cover it with clothes. Again, you really want to avoid dyes, fragrances and any alcohol-containing product. You want to get at least an SPF50 for the best coverage nowadays. Remember when you thought a 15 was high? Yeah… ummm… like SO yesterday. Between the protection of your tattoo and the prevention of skin cancer, most people will tell you to get an SPF of 50 or higher in a broad-spectrum sunscreen. You need to reapply it frequently especially when in water or are sweating (read here http://health.howstuffworks.com/skin-care/beauty/sun-care/how-often-apply-sunscreen.htm for great sun care info). Don’t cheap out on your sunscreen–and use it like you ARE trying to save the world with it. You should apply a shotglass worth all over, whether it be oil or cream! Sassy suggests: Neutrogena® Pure & Free® Baby Sunscreeen Lotion SPF 60+ and Coppertone® Tattoo GUARD™ Lotion SPF 50 Sunscreen

See? There is no need to worry that you wont be able to find the items you will need to keep your new art looking fresh and new for a long time. Your neighborhood drugstore should have all of these things you will need. Make sure of one thing: when you open your products, write the date on them. All skin care products–especially sunscreens–begin losing their main properties and begin breaking down from bacteria in about a year. Instead of using more and hoping for the best just go out and restock! Your skin and your tattoo will thank you.
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Take Care Of That Tat!!!

20 May

imageSo I’m at the tattoo expo and one of the main reasons I’m here is to get information on skin care–before, during and after the tat is done. I was trying to explain to my new friend Brian, a local tattoo artist, that it literally drives me insane that people don’t take care of their piece of art–a pictorial expression of a piece of their life–after it’s done. He agreed. “They get it done, and literally forget about it. Most of the time they don’t even use the post-tat cream I give them. Then they either come back [complaining] that I did something wrong or worse…. they take their mess to someone else and [complain] that I [messed] it up. That’s the worst.”

imageWhile at the expo, I had the privilege to be able to talk to Casey, an employee of one of the expo’s sponsors, Spaulding & Rogers. She was not just a doll but she was VERY informed about the tattooing process and the care involved with it. We talked about the skin on the area that you want tattooed. Her and I agreed it should be taken care of beforehand. Me, being in the industry for as long as I have, believes targeted skin care should begin at the age of 18–head to toe–but that’s me. It’s important that the skin you want to tattoo is not dry, not cracked, not scarred. Skin like that can easily split open under a tattoo needle. Not good. After your tattoo is done, the healing process is really important. How you take care of it will make or break the condition, the design or the color intensity of the art. It’s really important….let me say that again…..it is really important!…that you follow your artist’s post tattoo instructions to the letter. TO THE LETTER!! Plus, be aware of the sun. A lot of people don’t realize that the sun is a drastic evil to any tattoo, especially a fresh one. If possible, keep a new tattoo covered when out in the sun for at least four weekss afterwards. Then Casey explained it a bit better: “A tattoo is really just a burn on your skin. You will heal the same way as if were to burn your skin on a stove.” Certainly a different thought process than thinking it’s a scraping filled with colored ink, isn’t it? But it certainly made sense. If you had a sunburn, would you go back outside tomorrow to hang in the blaring sun? Yeah….ummmm…..NO!

imageOnce you’ve healed, now comes the make-it-or-break-it time, believe it or not. Remember, what is on your body is a piece of art. If you inherited an Andy Warhol original, would you hang it in the basement next to the cat box and Christmas lights? Hell no! You’d have it front and center, protected from the elements. DO THE SAME WITH YOUR TATTOO. Keep it moisturized with a lotion that is dye-free and perfume-free. And nothing that contains alcohol. All of those are serious culprits for not just irritating a tattoo even after it’s healed, but can also cause fading of the ink with prolong use. Just because that skin has ink, doesn’t mean it’s “covered” from the sun either. In fact, just the opposite. It’s a burn, remember? Burned skin, no matter how old, has less pigment in it than it would naturally. Tattoo professionals recommend at least an SPF of 50 for smaller tats, a higher SPF for bigger pieces. This also has a lot to do where the tat is. Bony, drier areas like knees and elbows will take much longer to heal so it is important to watch these areas carefully and tend to them exactly how you are instructed.

Remember everyone…this isn’t the lucky tattoo prize that you got in your box of Cracker Jack. This is yours. You own it. And you will have it forever. Think about it: if someone said that you could have ONE car for the rest of your life, wouldn’t you be very selective in what you chose? Wouldn’t you want the person selling it to you to be reputable with satisfied clients and photos of other cars they sold? Wouldn’t you take care of it every day so it stayed in its best condition possible for as long as possible? Yeah….think about just that when you start thinking about a tattoo. Wear it well, wear it with pride, and keep it looking as fabulous as the day you got it!
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Sassy’s April Six

1 May

imageCan you be serious…. April is over? It’s MAY? I am the first to say that I have been waiting patiently for longer days and warmer temps for a while now. But wow, April sure flew by. I guess when you are stuck inside during cold, cruddy, wet weather, time flies. At least that’s what I’m trying to tell myself. Work with me.

Even with April flying by, I was still able to find my six monthly gotta-love-’em items. Some came in right under the wire too! So what did Sassy fall in love with last month? Lets take a look:

image1. Kate Spade’s “Live Colorfully” – Samples sell, people…samples sell. This was a scratch and sniff flap sample in one of my glam mags last month. I probably would have purchased a full sized bottle I liked it so much, but I’ve been falling for so many scents with this new season upon us so I decided to get the rollerball. This worked out perfect too because I can just throw it in my purse when I have a long day out of the house. With top notes of mandarin & pink water lily, a heart of golden gardenia & coconut water and nice lingering notes of sheer amber & tahitian vanilla, this light perfume stays with me all day. kate spade nailed this new scent for the season, in a bright crystal bottle with a light, refreshing scent. It combines fun, sexy, flirty and seductive all in one easy-to-wear, easy-to-carry scent. A Nordstrom exclusive! ($24.00)

image2. OPI’s Nail Lacquer in “Pussy Galore” – Go ahead, get the giggles out now. Heck, I did it too. Done? Okay. OPI created a fabulous collection based on fab girls from the James Bond movies. What’s so cool about this line is it is known as “liquid sand”. The polish, when dry, actually feels like you painted your nails then rolled them in…umm…sand! It’s different, it’s funky, and that’s what we love about OPI. The color “Pussy Galore” is a shimmery, sparkly baby pink. It is THE perfect polish if your nails are at an in between stage like mine are now. I broke a few so I had to cut them all down and start over. This color is muted enough to not stand out and scream, “My nails look like baahh!” but gives it enough color AND texture to still look neat. Right now I’m REALLY impressed that I’ve had it on for four days and do not have one chip. I might have to look further into the other colors in this collection! (Available at select beauty stores, $8.50)

image3. Lancôme Paris CILS BOOSTER XL Super-Enhancing Mascara Base – Primers are not just hot sellers, but are becoming almost requirements to get the look you want with your makeup, plus get it to stay fresh looking all day. A sweetheart of a girl who works the fragrance counter at my local Macy’s is gorgeous, and one of her best features is her eyes. I asked her what exactly did she used and she showed me. Although I was familiar with the Hypnolash mascara she wore, I wasn’t familiar with this mascara primer. It’s really easy to use…basically goes on with a white base using a regular mascara brush. This pre-lengthens and pre-plumps your lashes, prepping them for whatever mascara you use, helping it to give your mascara its full potential. To combine it with Lancôme’s Hypnose Star Mascara gives you long, lush, full, fluffy lashes that STAY just like the instant you put it on and keeps going ALL DAY. Am I thrilled with adding another step to my routine?…not completely. But the fact that the Super-Enhancing Mascara Base mascara gives my eyes the look of wearing false lashes is totally FAB! Totally worth it—thanks, girlfriend! (Macy’s, $24.00)

image4. Yes To Blueberries Age Refresh Overnight Hydrating Cream – I’ve always been a fan of the Yes To brand. It targets specific concerns while keeping true to its promise of a natural, cruelty-free products. I am a big fan of the Yes To Cucumbers makeup remover wipes, so when I won this night cream from a website drawing, I was excited. I won’t lie: I have a nighttime serum that I use faithfully to help cell turnover, exposing younger firmer skin. But it’s a serum and serums target problem areas you want to fix. No matter whether it be day or night, you need a serum to do the dirty work, but you still need a daytime moisturizer with an SPF and a night cream that hydrates and combats aging. I have a lot of moisturizers that I’ve collected over the years, but nothing specifically for night. Yes To Blueberries Overnight Hydrating Cream was exactly what I needed. It is 97% natural, hydrates my skin without making it feel greasy, refreshing scent, and keeps my face smooth. Now the bad news–this specific YTB night cream is no longer available to the public. (*sniff sniff*-tissue please). But the good news it has been replaced by Yes To Blueberries Deep Wrinkle Night Cream. This product is 99% natural and works hard to fight deep wrinkles as well as to hydrate skin. You actually get more benefits with the newer product! I can personally say I have noticed a BIG difference in my skin with this cream. Plus the quantity for the price is AH-MA-ZING! Keeping me looking young is what I want and that is what YTB Night Cream does for for me. (Retail outlets & drug stores, $13.99)

image5. Nuance Cucumber & Rosewater Dual Phase Makeup Remover – Ever since I can remember, I’ve only used two eye makeup removers. After all these years, I now have a conundrum: one of them has gone up in price significantly and the other has been discontinued. Figures. I was given a sample of a high-end solution which I absolutely loved, but the price was really steep. So I headed to CVS to check out other options since they were having a fab skin care sale this week. I happened to stumble upon Salma Hayek’s Makeup Remover. It caught my eye instantly because it had the dual layer formula which is very important when removing waterproof makeup. I did a bit of online research and everyone who had tried it gave it five stars. Good testimonial right there. The regular price for a 4.3 oz. bottle is $7.99, but this week it was BOGO half price. AND I had a $1.50 off coupon. The deal was made. And I’m glad… because its awesome! It’s not greasy at all, has no scent, is very lightweight, and gets off even the toughest waterproof makeup (with glitter too!) I grabbed two bottles which should last for some time. I may even have to check out Salma Hayek’s other beauty items when I go back to the store! (CVS, $7.99)

image6. GUESS Kate Skinny Black Jeans with Side Lace Up – Okay, I’m sure the description alone sounds like something out of a Harley Biker Wear catalog. But it’s not. In fact, these jeans scream “Rockstar!” Low rise, true black denim pants with a crisis-cross lace design down on each outer side. They look hot, they make you feel sexy, they fit in all the right places and they are to die for. Nothing cutting, creasing, or wedging in the wrong places. I swear these jeans were made for me! In fact, so did Ian, my sales associate at GUESS! I’d LOVE for you to see an actual picture of them but they are SO NEW that they haven’t made it to the advertising phase yet. (I love being the new girl on the block.) The picture shown is the same pants in brown faux suede, so you get an idea. I have to say, without a smile, that these were the most expensive pair of jeans I have ever bought. And if I didn’t think they’d get worn or didn’t fit that good, I would not have bought them. But oh baby….. I WILL get my money’s worth and then some. And then some more! (GUESS retail stores, $148)

I have to say, I was worried early in the month. I wasn’t buying a lot of things and was pretty content with what I was using. Plus the weather is getting warmer so digging out the Spring clothes was like getting a whole new wardrobe! But these fab six managed to make their way into my life, and for that I’m thankful. As always, I encourage you to try one or more of these great products if you are looking for something specific or if you just want to try something new. Sassy likes them. I hope you do too! And of course, if you do?… LET ME KNOW!!

SO Not Your Mother’s Hair….

23 Apr

NYM_FULL_Line_4.13

About a month ago, I started noticing a lot of Tweets about, to and from some company known only as “NYM”. Being a New Yorker, I just figured it had something to do with my state. But after a bit of research, I realized “NYM” stood for Not Your Mother’s, a brand of hair styling products that gives you salon-looking glam with an easy on the wallet price. Okay, no offense? But just about EVERY styling product claims that. So I’m like….okay, whatever. NEXT!

But the rave reviews kept coming in, through Facebook, through Twitter, through blogs everywhere. What was it that NYM’s products had that people loved? I had to find out the scoop. And the fabulous people at Not Your Mother’s were excited to tell me all about them, and to let me try a couple too!

not_your_mothers_kinkymovesThe first product I sampled was NYM’s “Kinky Moves” Curl Defining Hair Cream. Now, granted, it wasn’t easy for my daughter to handle a product named that to be on our vanity counter. (Even I had a thought or two when I looked at the label.–Shudders). But we moved along. I naturally have wavy hair, but it easily gets flat, frizzy or… just… bleh, sometimes for no reason. I’ve tried setting gels, mousses, curl enhancers–you name it–without much luck and not doing what the product promised. This Curl Defining Hair Cream not only said it would define and enhance naturally curly or wavy hair, but it also would de-frizz and detangle frazzled hair. Plus, thanks to the fabulous benefits of grape seed oil (love that stuff, read more about it here) that had been added to the product, the cream would add gloss, shine and UV protection benefits as well.

When I first used it after a regular shower, I immediately noticed its fabulous scent. I am a fanatic about the smell of hair products. I can’t stand it when hair styling products reeks of alcohol or artificial fragrances. If a product has natural, healthy ingredients in it, it should smell natural and healthy! This NYM’s product smelled of fresh grapes with a hint of jasmine. Yummy. It’s not a heavy or fake scent and I loved it. Okay, so like most people with, thick long hair, I figured I would need a substantial amount of the product to get the result I wanted, right? Ummm…..WRONG! Live and learn. A little more than a quarter-sized dollop is all I needed to rub into my hands and coat my damp hair, from roots to ends. After a comb through with a wide tooth comb, I messed my hair a bit with my fingertips and blew it dry upside down. The look I got was FABULOUS! My natural waves were full and bouncy, and not sticky and gooey. It felt soft and smelled good! I just used my fingers to style the full, wavy look I loved. Now I was ready to lock it in. But with what?….

not_your_mothers_shesatease…. with a Not Your Mother’s “She’s A Tease” Volumizing Hairspray, that’s what! Unlike my daughter, I love…LOOOOOOOVE…..the big hair rocker look. I grew up with it, I think it’s fun, and it is sooooo me! Back in the day, we used a can of alcohol/bug spray-smelling Aqua Net, freezing each spray with a hairbrush, curling iron and hair dryer giving us a look of full hair that would make any 80’s girl proud. Now, I like that full look still, but I don’t want the stickiness, the crazy-glue stiffness, the frizz and that chemical smell that reminded me of 9th grade science class. (“Stay away from the Bunsen burners, ladies!”) For years, I’ve been sniff testing hair sprays to find one that didn’t smell like moonshine, but still had good hold. “She’s A Tease” gives me everything I want in a hairspray: a firm hold, lift and volume and humidity resistance keeping the frizzies in check. In addition, NYM’s Volumizing Hairspray contains apple blossom and bamboo extract to strengthen your hair and give you extra volume with a nice scent. The hold is STRONG! You don’t have look for the formula that’s right for you…. there is one formula which works for everyone. A no brainier! This, by far, is my favorite hair spray on the market right now. An all-day manageable hold with a smell I love!

I am so glad I discovered this great brand. It’s not a line of products that will flood your TV with commercials or jam your magazines with luke-warm ads. But it is out in stores where you can get it and with salon results at drug store prices! Seriously, that is amazing. I think word of mouth is great advertising–honest and convincing–and I will certainly do my part to get the information about NYM’s products to fashionistas everywhere… they’re that good. You can find Not Your Mother’s “Kinky Moves” Curl Defining Hair Cream and “She’s A Tease” Volumizing Hairspray as well as other fabulous products in their line at stores in your area such as CVS, Target, Walmart and ULTA Beauty. To order online, you can find Not Your Mother’s products at cvs.com, ULTA.com and drugstore.com. The price for the items I tried is an extremely reasonable $6 each.

This Sassinista is telling you to run–not walk–to get Not Your Mother’s products to treat yourself and your hair to some fabulous styling and pampering. Don’t forget to follow them on Twitter and Facebook too! They often have deals and contests which is FAB! I love the products, my hair loves them, and I have found a way to keep my auburn tresses smelling and looking fab all day long. A salon look without the salon price? One word–awesome!