Tag Archives: exfoliant

Fave Beauty Companies-2016

19 Feb

sephoraaislesAround this time, I start thinking about the products that I fell in love with last year. As I sat at my vanity today, I realized I fell in love with A LOT of things in 2016! Skin care, makeup, fashions… you name it. I think I have my visit to The Makeup Show in NYC last May to thank for that. I learned about so many big companies as well as “indies” that had products that were above so many others. Not to mention, I was able to ask questions about their ingredients so it could help me decide on possible items that my sensitive skin wouldn’t protest. So instead of me singling out each product that I am crushing on big time (and trust me—there are many), I thought I would talk about some of the companies that have given me items that are now a part of my regular beauty and glamour routine:

twinmedixTwinMedix: None of my makeup products would look or feel good on my face if my skin wasn’t in great condition. I had been using a “variety” of skin care products from different companies to try and get my skin to a place where I was happy. I admit, I am fighting the clock when it comes to anti-aging skin care for my face. I thought I was winning, but then I began to realize that all the different products I was using were usually created to work their best with other products from the same brand. Sometimes those sister products were hard to find, very expensive or even irritated my skin. I was kind of at a loss as to what to do. That was until I attended The Makeup Show in NYC. I was honored to meet and be able to have a little one-on-one time with the fabulous makeup artist, James Vincent. I asked him what smaller, unknown companies at the show should be on my “must see” list. His first answer?—TwinMedix. I stopped by their booth and met their fabulous President, Michelle, who was a sweetheart. I told her about the problems I was having with my skin and what I wanted to achieve in the long run. She introduced me to the ENTIRE line from TwinMedix. If I was going to try this brand, I was going to do it right and use ONLY that product….and I am so glad I did! My skin has NEVER looked and felt as good as it does now. I have been using each product faithfully since last May and I love the results. Their state-of-the-art technology enables them to create the purest and most professional formulas that integrate pharmaceutical-grade vitamins to treat and protect your skin. It is so high tech that there are very few products that are needed—a great cleanser (O2), a phenomenal exfoliator (X), and vitamin enriched serums (C10,E5 A15) that are used each day and night. For a redhead with sensitive skin, I have to say my face has never looked and felt so good. The vitamins they use are known to help fight against aging, and they are abundant in the TwinMedix line. As hesitant I was to try a skin care line without research, Michelle told me how to use each product and why! She even told me to let her know what I thought after I used them for a while… and I did. I am glad I found the TwinMedix line of skin care products. I still don’t like getting old but now I have the goods to help me help kick over the hourglass in the aging process!

katvondKat Von D: Being in the tattoo industry made me aware of the KVD line of cosmetics as soon as her line was released. Anyone who follows her knows that she doesn’t blend in with the crowd and she is proud of it. After many years of “blending”, I finally found my voice (and pen!) and began being the sassy redhead I am now. When I am out in public, I like doing my makeup in different ways. No matter what the attire is for the day, my makeup always has a pop to it. Sometimes it’s a bold lip, sometimes a rocker eye look. When the winged eyeliner look took off, I was lost. VERY lost! I couldn’t get it to look good like some girls that came to the tattoo shop. I watched videos, I played dress up, I tried. Then I learned that it might be easier to get the look I want if I used a better liner. What did everyone suggest? You got it… Kat Von D’s. It all started with her famous Tattoo Liner. I fell in love immediately! The long wear formula and easy peasy pen design let me get the winged liner look the way I liked. It even gave me the precision of the thin pen design to create some fun, “out there” looks. My next love was her Everlasting Liquid Lipstick. It is no secret that I like to talk. If I am out and decide to have a cup of coffee with a friend, I don’t want my ordinary lip color to end up on my teeth or all over the coffee cup. I want it to stay put for a long time. KVD’s Liquid Lipstick does just that! If it is on, it isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. The colors she has are awesome—bold, flawless and long lasting. She even has colors that are REALLY bold, like purple, hot pink, blue and black. What I like to do is create my own color of the day. I pick the shades of Everlasting Liquid Lipstick that I want to blend, use a clean lip brush, and apply my own shade that will last. I don’t think I have ever created the same color twice! The possibilities are endless. My lip look can be as neutral or as strong as I want. In fact, when I went to order my latest KVD lip color, I had the opportunity to get a sample of her Lock It Concealer Cream. When it came, I thought I would just try it out since I don’t really have dark circles under my eyes. Well, that may be true but I couldn’t believe how “bright” my makeup looked on my face when I used it. The color was spot on (which is difficult for a redhead to find) and it carefully hid the flaws that I didn’t know I had! I was in awe and I ordered the full-sized product that week. I will be looking forward to sampling different things in the KVD line when I get the chance to get to a Sephora and adding to my favorite cosmetics. (Oh, by the way? Do not overlook her makeup brush collection. She may not have many of them but the ones she does have in her line are FABULOUS!)

makeupforeverMake Up For Ever: This is a big name when it comes to cosmetics. That’s probably because they are masters of just about everything in the industry! If you are looking for a product that you loved from another company and it recently got discontinued, I suggest you look at MUFE. They even have things I never knew about or thought I needed… but now are part of my makeup routine. One of those items is their Aqua XL Eye Pencil. I love my liquid liner on my top lid, but when it comes to the waterline on my bottom lid, it is hard to get any liner to stay there for a long time. The Aqua XL is perfect for just that. Not to mention, it is a pencil you have to sharpen yourself so you can get a nice tip for precise application. It is a product I use EVERY day. I am also a big fan of MUFE’s Aqua Seal, especially since almost all of my eye shadows are mineral loose powders. If I need to keep my eye look in place through the craziest of situations (all-night dancing, tear-jerker movies, photo shoots…in the rain), I will use a just a little on my eye shadow brush and pat it on using my shadows. It does dry quickly, so have an idea of the look you want before you start because it is meant to stay and IT DOES. This is also great to use if you want to create eye liners in wild shades. Using an angled liner brush, dip the tip in the Aqua Seal, pick up a bit of pigments from shadow pot and apply along the top lashes or in/below the bottom lash line. The bottle lasts a long time, just keep it sealed tight. When it comes to finding a foundation, I will take and suggestion or recommendations (let’s not forget about samples!) really help me decide on one I might like to try. I find my skin to be very sensitive to department store & drug store liquid make-ups. When I had the chance to pick the brain of a professional makeup artist, I asked what his go-to foundation was. He didn’t hesitate: Make Up For Ever’s Water Blend Face and Body Foundation. It is SUPER light but buildable. It doesn’t “hide” my skin but in fact makes my skin look natural and flawless. Again, the bottle is REALLY big and lasts a long time. Some might be put off by the price, but if a bottle lasts an entire year, that breaks down to pennies a day. Then, to complete my look, I like to give my face a nice dusting with an HD powder. It sets my makeup and leaves my skin flawless. The finishing powders I had used in the past left my face looking “cakey” so I was hesitant to try them again. Then I received a sample of MUFE’s HD Microfinish Powder and I’ve been using it ever since. It was hard to process that a powder could be white but it truly is colorless and anyone can use it. A nice, light finish for all day wear and perfect for movies, videos and photos. I always keep an eye on Make Up For Ever to see if they have any new items that I might love as much as these.

lamineralsLA Minerals: “Who?” you ask. Exactly. LA Minerals is a small indie company that I stumbled on while looking for products that wouldn’t irritate my sensitive skin many, many years ago. I was able to try many different formulas and shades (which they have many of!) to see what mineral powder foundation would work for me. They have samples available for almost all of their products so it was nice to try ones I liked and see after a couple of uses whether it would work for me. Well, they did. They ALL did! I ended up getting hooked on a light coverage formula (Valley Girl) for summer when I just need an all over dusting in the heat; a heavier coverage mineral makeup foundation (Hollywood) during the colder months when my skin is a bit is a little paler and uneven toned; a pure, no talc blush in a color that goes with everything I wear without giving me itchy skin; an oil-controlling finishing powder that keeps the shiny-ies away when my skin gets a little oily in the summer and during workouts; “diva dust” that works as a fantastic high-sparkle cheek, lip and eye highlighter; and pure mineral eye shadows that can go on wet or dry, contain no talc, and requires very little product for a great look. What is nice about LA Minerals is that they have a “frequent flyer” code every month for returning customers. You will never see this company in magazines, on TV, or in cosmetic stores. It is all done by one fantastic woman with a great product that thrives on referrals. I have been singing her praises for MANY years and will continue to do so! (Footnote: LA Minerals just released a pure mineral LIQUID foundation which its AWESOME, especially on my dry, winter skin.)

Paul Mitchell: If your skin and makeup are looking great, you might as well make sure you have beautiful hair too! After a horrid hair decision over 3+ years ago, I had to find someone that would fix my mistake and get my hair healthy again. My BFF at the time said he knew just the person and set up a time for her to come discuss my options. She was a miracle worker! She still keeps my hair, even today. I still have a bit of damage to my ends, but they are almost completely grown out. Whenever I would go see her for my appointments, I would ask her what items would work best on my hair to do this or that. The first item she suggested was a Paul Mitchell spray called “Hot off the Press”. It was a multi-function styling product that could be used with hair appliances to hold the style or after I was completely done with my hair for a good hold that wasn’t sticky or damaging. It was exactly what I needed and there is always 1-2 cans in my loft at all times. Since I had been “enhancing” my hair color over the past several years, it was important to find the right products that would extend the life of my color without causing more damage. PM came out last year with a fabulous line of products just for that! The Ultimate Color Repair line not only helps repair current damage but also seals in color preventing fading and keeps hair shiny & soft. This has been my go-to line ever since it came out to keep my auburn tresses bright and healthy! In addition to those favorites, I also have other Paul Mitchell styling products that I love that helps give me a fab look for the day/night. You will find Super Skinny Serum, Stay Strong, Thicken Up, Extra Body Finishing Spray in my collection at all times. Even with that chaotic hair experience, my stylist along with Paul Mitchell’s great products has helped my hair to get healthy again… and has what I need to keep it that way!

We all know that when we see an advertisement in a magazine or on TV for a beauty product, our ears perk up and we try to justify how this great product could fit into our beauty routine. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don’t. As I have gotten more mature, I have learned that new doesn’t always mean better. Although for us makeup junkies, it is hard to turn away from something new that looks great. Nowadays, I find myself asking “Is it worth the time and money to try this or should I stick with the product I already have that I KNOW does exactly what I want it to do?” Sometimes I do venture off and try something new, but I am also finding that loyalty has its privileges…and results!

Let me know what you think about this: Do you have a brand that you are completely loyal to? Do you have any “must have” products from different brands that do what you love and won’t try anything else? Or are you an “I have to try it!” person who is always looking for something newer/less expensive/better? Let me know your thoughts on brands or products you LOVE!
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“Perfectly” Perfect… (part one)

19 Jun

Once upon a time, a long long time ago, there was a redhead who was waist deep in a home based business. The economy turned, women got too busy for parties, and comparable items were available in the local mall or drugstore for less. Soon, reports came out about company animal testing, non-USA made products, and some added ingredients that were on an “unsafe” list. Was this an organization I wanted to be a part of? Nope, no more. I was done–REALLY DONE. I did however learn a lot about the skin care industry, found a few products I liked, then stepped away… giving me time to do a lot of researchPosh and follow my dream to write. I learned about what was good for the skin, what was not, what ingredients were healthy, what ones were certainly not. I couldn’t learn enough! And OH!…the things I learned.

After six years of researching, investigating, writing, testing and trying various products (including some I made myself), I became very particular about what was going on my face and body. General rule of thumb for my skin became “If you can’t eat it, you shouldn’t use it.” Most of my bathroom vanity consisted of natural products I had found, free of unhealthy additives and chemicals. A lot I had made with simple products found in most peoples kitchens. Some things weren’t easy to find–more so makeup items than skin care–but with a lot of hunting, I was able to find mineral face, eye and cheek cosmetics and homemade lip products that were to my liking. Still, I wish that I could find safe, natural, good-quality skin care products without harsh chemicals, additives, and ingredients that would I wouldn’t react to, for sale on the open market. Plus, I wanted to support my neighbors, people who worked and produced products like this in the US. I wanted products that contained ingredients I new that were originated in towns I had heard of! Oh, and was it too much to ask that products like these could be sold at a price that wouldn’t break the bank? Almost sounds virtually impossible, right? For a while, I thought yes… but then I found Perfectly Posh.

Now, we know that I manage a tattoo shop part time to keep myself sane (yeah, process that!) One of our regular customers whom I had the pleasure of meeting shortly after I started there came in for an appointment one evening. I had left for the day when she came in and was sad I had to miss her. Shannon is a doll and there is always a fun time when we are all together. When I came in the next day, however, I found a beautiful pink gift bag stocked with samples of all kinds of “pampering products”. Okay, first let me say DA-ROOL!… I’m a sucker for samples that make me feel & smell delish! As I investigated further, I found they were from Shannon, as she was a consultant with the Perfectly Posh organization. At first, I’ll be honest, I was very skeptical–my home based business radar kicked into high alert. Memories of stalking unit leaders and free pink car drivers reciting monotonous mantras began replaying in my head. I honestly took out each sample while surrounding myself with a brick wall so no song, dance and mind-game manipulation would get to me. And if this stuff WAS so good, why hadn’t I heard about it before now, hmm? So like every good writer, I decided to research the company AND the products to see how they compared to or exceeded similar items on the market. Let’s start with what I learned about Perfectly Posh and their product line:

The company wants you to know that YOU deserve to be pampered. (I agree with this 100%. If you don’t take a few minutes each day to make yourself feel special, you’ll get eaten alive in this world. I’m not saying you need a whole day at the spa, but take some time, each day, for you. It will liven your mood to be a better mom, wife, student, employee, boss, whatever. Take time for YOU!)

  • Posh strives for quality. They use gentle ingredients. The avoid dangerous fillers.
  • They love natural ingredients like butters and oils.
  • They WANT you to read their ingredient lists and labels so you know what is in everything and where it is from so there is no deception or hidden secrets. (Big plus with me. I’ve done my research so no one is going to b.s. This redhead. And they didn’t. What they said was there, was there; what they said wasn’t, wasn’t.)

I found a peace of mind when I learned the following about Posh products–

    • All products paraffin-free. They are also free of sulfates including SLS.
    • Their items also do not contain any petroleum-derived ingredients, parabens, or gluten ingredients.
    • There are no soy fillers, and no lanolin.
    • They use the highest-quality essential oils and fine phthalate-free fragrances.
    • Products are very natural and consequently gentle–read the labels.
    • They use natural enzymes and gently moisturizing vitamin E to preserve the life and look of our pampering products.
    • All of their products are cruelty-free with NO testing on animals.
    • Perfectly Posh does things differently. They offer your pampering products made from the best ingredients mother nature has to offer. They source gentle, nourishing, and the best ingredients from all over the world, then create great, natural products right here in the United States.

Maybe for some, those thing mean very little, maybe they don’t mean too much at all. But TO ME??? They meant a lot! So when I went through my big bag of samples to play with, I took out “The Posh Paper” (their catalog, printed on recycled paper) to learn about the benefits of each product I was trying, its ingredients, and how i could benefit from it. The first thing I noticed it that every product, in addition to its ingredients, has a Posh Product Key. The Key Codes help you find products with particular features while looking at the catalog. For example:
N = Natural Fragrance… No Color = No Color Added…..
D-Tox = D-Tox Ingredients Added… FF = Fragrance Free…..
EO = Essential Oils… V = Vegan…..
These little guides can be very helpful when looking for products that can interfere with a customer’s senses, allergies, or personal preferences.

After about a week, I had managed to try almost everything I got a sample of. Almost everything I tried, I liked. That’s good! The ingredients were things I had tried or used in the past and liked, but had trouble finding in products on store shelves. Everything seemed very clean, organized, informative and easy to try. It didn’t take me long to find a few I absolutely loved.

So, what did I put on my first order? Well let’s break down my favorites:

Look Natural

Moisturize 911

 

 

 

 

Face Care:
Having sensitive skin really reduces my options for products to not just clean and calm my face, but also keep me looking young. Finding ones that do that on a natural level is almost impossible! Posh’s “Look Natural” line has an array of face products that give my skin what it needs without the ingredients it doesn’t. Important features that this skin care line has are:

  • Gentle 100% Vegan Blends
  • No fillers
  • No parabens or sulfates
  • No dyes or phthalates
  • 100% natural fragrances & essential oils

I was lucky enough that Shannon was able to sample me almost every “Look Natural” item. I was glad because this really gave me a chance to see how my skin would react first before purchasing anything. Now that I have, I can share!
BFF: Best Face Forever wash was an immediate score. A gentle exfoliant is what my face likes 2-3x a week, and this gentle wash with very fine microbeads does just that. It’s surrounded by a combination of refreshing grapefruit and peppermint oils to help wash, freshen & soothe. Not too harsh at all to cause any discomfort, burning or reaction. A definite win! $20 (V, No Color, EO)
Delish! fashwash is what I turn to when I just need a simple, natural face wash. Nourishing & non-drying, this gentle cleanser removes dirt, oils, makeup & dead skin with natural fruit extracts. Being non-exfolliating, it can be used morning and night in between BFF treatments. And the scent is tasty too! $20 (V, No Color, N, EO)
Moisturize 911: This was a must-have item from Posh’s “Pretty” line. Even though the Pretty items kind of target the younger market, the formulas are spot on for people of all ages, especially ones that want to fight aging before signs creep in. I had done enough research over the years to learn that small amounts of caffeine in some skin care items can provide fabulous benefits–they tighten and brighten even the tiredest of faces and skin. This twice a day caffeine-infused glycerin moisturizer leaves your face a wake up call in the morning by firming and brightening. At night, I just let it do its magic while I sleep. It’s absorbed into the skin quickly, leaving a fresh, smooth feel while evening out your skin tone. A no-brainer for those who want to start a good skin routine or keep healthy skin looking its best! $16 (V, EO, N, No Color)

Daily Grind
Skindelicious
Body Care:
Since Perfectly Posh focuses on taking some time for you, to make yourself feel pampered and pretty, a home spa day definitely is going to focus on products to make you feel special from head to toe. Not only do you want to relax but you also want good, natural, products to make this happen. Now, I myself, am not a bath girl. I like my showers, and if allowed, I’ll stay in till every last drop of hot water is used. (I know–bad for redheads. Very bad!) So I am going to look for things that will make me feel good when I’m in and when I get out! That’s why I love:
The Daily Grind: Hello?…Who doesn’t like to start their day with coffee? Okay, so not everyone, but I do! The Daily Grind is a great body scrub that eliminates the dead, dry, top layers of skin while limiting the breakdown of skin structure. That’s thanks to the natural cleansing & clearing elements of the coffee bean which is also a huge benefit to aid in the prevention of cellulite. Plus the scrub isn’t too abrasive so it preserves your beautiful surface skin. Cleanses and clears in one step. Love the smell, love the results! $24 (EO, V, No Colors)
Skindelicious: Your body’s skin needs to stay moist, and unnatural & pore-clogging petroleum based products are not the answer. I have been raving about the benefits of natural oils and butters for years, so to see a company that actually agrees with my way of thinking is a big deal. (Yeay!–applause for Sassy!) Posh’s Scrumptious Body Butters contain nothing but the best moisturizing and hydrating ingredients that you can feed your skin to keep it feeling soft and fresh all day long. Some like to use it before bed, others like to start the day off with an all-over blanket of moisture and freshness. With eight formulas to choose from, you should have no problem fining the scent/formula that will help keep you get the most for your best skin ever! My pick? Mango Marshmallow–luxurious mango butter with nourishing marshmallow and vanilla extracts to increase the skin’s natural cell regeneration process. $22 (V, No Color)

Okay, I’ve got more to talk about, but we will stop for now. Like I said, Perfectly Posh has great products to pamper you from head to toe and next time we will talk about pampering some if those other parts that need a little TLC too: lips, hands and feet. So, for now, if you are interested in reading more about the Perfectly Posh company and the great products Shannon has graciously let me try (or others you might like!), check out Shannon’s page at: www.perfectlyposh.com/sls

And if you want to ask me about anything I’ve tried? Don’t hesitate to ask. Click the *Click Here To Contact Sassy* link and ask away! I’ll be honest about what I’ve used, and my thoughts and results with each. And have you had experience with Perfectly Posh products. What did you think? Add you comments below! I’d love to know what my readers are thinking!

Now, what are you waiting for? Go make a cup of tea/coffee/fresh lemonade, kick back, relax, and take some time for you. YOU deserve it!!Now, what are you waiting for? Go make a cup of tea/coffee/fresh lemonade, kick back, relax, and take some time for you. YOU deserve it!!

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