Tag Archives: make up

This or That……

13 Aug

I have been studying and reviewing glamour and skin care products for over ten years now. I have tried a LOT of things. All different things too, from head to toe. As the cosmetic industry evolves, so do the products. New ingredients and formulas can make your favorite life savers almost obsolete. Of course, that does not mean you have to go out and buy every new product that has just been released. It can, however, give you other options depending on what you feel you might need or may want to improve. This can be especially important when you have sensitive skin. Something may be okay one day and then cause irritation the next. You need a back up. You need alternatives.

You also must remember, though, that many skincare targeting products can take up to 6-8 weeks to show any improvement in that area. Try to give the products you are choosing time to work the way they are supposed to. If you notice something new is working better than your previous product, hooray for you! Go ahead and switch if you want. But do not forget your previous faves. You may need to fall back if something in your routine goes off the rails.
Here is a list of my skin care “this and that’s” which have worked their way to the top of the list over the years, as well as some that are super new that I am loving right now. Especially with summer causing my skin to become finicky depending on the heat and humidity. It is really important to have products that are lighter and gentler close by. Alternatives are a must, and here are mine:

CLEANSERS

MAC Cleanse Off Oil – A perfect oil cleanser that loosens up everything from foundation to waterproof mascara. I apply it all over my face with a circular motion then remove it with a pre-moistened cleansing cloth. It comes off easy and my face is soft and clean. ($24)

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Banila Co. Clean It Zero 3-in-1 Cleansing Balm – This balm is the bomb! Packed with healthy skin ingredients, it feels like a light-weight gel. It melts from the temp of your body, loosening up any daily makeup or dirt. Rinse with water, micellar water or a wet face cleaning cloth to remove thoroughly. ($19)

SERUMS

Skin Inc. My Daily Dose of Glow – Just a small amount on your fingertips is enough to treat your face to what it needs each day. Pink and blue “bubbles” pop open to fortify your face with Vitamin A, Chlorella extract to combat damaging free radicals, and hyaluronic acid. This instantly combats aging and calms the skin while hydrating and brightening your skin. Light weight and gentle for all skin types. ($65)

LUE Balance by Jean Seo – This is a very thin serum that helps to hydrate as well as calms the skin from incidental irritants. If you want to use this with a heavier targeting serum, put LUE’s on first. It is thin and easily absorbed into the face without a heavy greasy feel. It also is a great base to minimize pores while still helping to restore optimal moisture retention. ($15)

TwinMedix Pro:Essentials E5 – I have been using TwinMedix Skin Care for over 5 years and I cannot tell you how amazing my skin has become because of it. Its medical grade vitamins keep your skin looking amazingly young. The E5 is formulated with pure vitamin E to help soothe, protect and heal & protect damaged skin. It’s the perfect last layer before your moisturizer. ($90)

TONERS

Pixi Glow Tonic – I had stopped using toners many years ago. A waste of time, I thought? Not so. Toners have been reformulated over the years and are now an essential part of a skincare routine. This is my daytime toner because I like the way it removes the last traces of dirt and cleanser, getting the skin its cleanest before you apply your serums. Filled with skin brightening natural extracts, this product gives your face a nice, natural glow. ($18)
Ulta Watermelon Facial Mist – I admit it, I am a sucker for anything watermelon scented. I have been since I was a kid! Even on “no makeup days”, a spritz of this will help keep my skin fresh and hydrated. Need a quick cleaning? Spray the mist on a cotton ball and go over your face to give it a quick detox. The watermelon extract balances the skin’s hydration while giving you a scent you will absolutely love! ($10)

MOISTURIZERS

TwinMedix Pro Refine Moisturizer – After YEARS of oily skin, I just thought my skin would never need anything with any type of moisturizer in it. Well, that was wrong! First, maturing skin definitely needs some type of moisturizer no matter what condition my skin is in. Second, there is a BIG difference between moisturizer and hydration. It is good to use products that give and create both. Not only is this moisturizer great for all skin types (especially sensitive skin) but it also gives you a nice, even matte finish to your face. A must have in my vanity. ($18)

Sunday Riley Ice Ceramide Moisturizing Cream – Even with all of the products that I have been able to try and use over the years, I am still reminded that money can be a deciding factor when purchasing makeup and skin care. The Sunday Riley brand is known for how good it hydrates and pampers your skin, but many see the price tag and shy away. I get it. I definitely get it! I was lucky enough to get TWO small sample jars of this moisturizing cream in one of my subscription boxes over the winter, and it came at the perfect time. It is more for dry, mature skin. But when my face is dealing with dry, tight skin from the weather, indoor heat, or cold winds… this is the pampering my face needs. ($65)

*H2O Hydration Oasis (Honorable Mention)* – In the summer (especially this year), it can feel too hot to wear any makeup. That does not mean that your skin should be neglected. This gel moisturizer goes on cool and extremely light to replenish much needed hydration without it feeling heavy on your face. A couple of dots is all my face needs to keep it smooth and dewy. It is also a great base to add a bit of my mineral foundation to so I can blend it together for a slightly tinted skin hydrator without that sweltering makeup feeling.

MASKS

Sand and Sky Australian Pink Clay Pore Refining Face Mask – There is something special about taking the time to give your face a pampering session. Because clay is a great ingredient to help reduce oil on the face and helps to tighten pores, this is a nice mask to use in the summer to keep your skin in check. Apply it to a clean face, let dry, then remove it by splashing it off in the shower or sink. Your skin will feel firmer and give you a wonderful glow.

Hey Honey Sweet Treat Wild Berry & Honey Yogurt Recovery Mask – Packed with tons of antioxidants from dark skinned berries, this creamy mask not only gives you a boost of hydration but it also contains the healing properties from the honey to build your skin’s protective barriers as well as restore its elasticity. Added Vitamin E also helps to heal and restore your skin’s moisture balance from this 15-minute pick-me-up treatment. ($48)

EYE CREAMS

TwinMedix Pro:Refine Eye Corrector – I think many of us are waiting for that love all, save all, spend all eye cream that will bring our eyes back to looking like they did when they were 19. When it comes to keeping your eye area looking young, you need to look for good ingredients. After that, however, it is all on you. Consistency is key. This cream comes in an easy to dispense bottle and the results were noticeable to me in just two weeks. The skin is lighter under my eyes, has helped to reduce the fine lines in the corners as well as plumps the areas were deep lines tend to settle. This quick-absorbing light cream is perfect for anyone and works during any season. ($35)

Soroci Spot Light Eye Cream – Here is another little gem that was found in a monthly subscription bag and now has become a mainstay in my daily routine. A little goes a long way when using this cream that is packed with various peptides to give the area around the eye elasticity to help avoid “tightening” skin that can cause wrinkles. It does not bother my eyes, even wearing contacts, and its skin-toned cream goes on translucent giving the eye area a nice smooth look.

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This may seem like a LOT to process when it comes to finding the right products that work with your skin type, the results you are looking for, and the ingredients you may or may not be able to use. As always if what you are using is working? Feel free to stick with it. You need to remember, however, that products and ingredients are constantly evolving, some giving you even better results you may be getting now. Do your research, do not hesitate to ask for a trial size if you want to see how a product works, and read reviews. Including mine! Hopefully, you will find the latest skin care items that can keep your face looking amazing, becoming the perfect canvas for the look you want to achieve!

Great Products for the New Year…

8 Mar

Let me start out by saying this redhead has been busy! Over the past year, I have taking on two more writing positions, have become a brand ambassador for two fabulous companies, am a full-time promo model for a hot magazine and I still continue to hang with my friends while managing a fab tattoo shop in town. Everything I have learned over the years in regards to fashion, skin care, make up, glam and the tattoo industry is helping me to live my dream. Not only am I evolving my life, but I’m also the healthiest I have been in years while I am doing it. I have a great support team and I thank them every day for lifting me up with their encouragement. I am truly blessed.

I know that it is way past the beginning of a new year, but I have still been testing and trying new products and styles that help me keep up with my cool yet chaotic life! Because things are so crazy, I definitely need things that are going to do their job. And if they can save me time (and of course money), then hip hip hooray! Have I found new super products that do just that? You betcha!

Here are a few goodies that anyone could appreciate in their daily routines:

1. Urban Decay All Nighter Long-Lasting Setting Spray – Preparing your makeup for a photoshoot can take a LONG time. The last thing you need is anything like sweat or rain to cause your look to start sliding off your face. I have used setting mists in the past, but they have either fell short or turned my skin into a potato chip. You don’t need a lot to set your look and it will stay out for hours. Just spray your face in the shape of an X , keep your eyes closed for about 60-90 seconds and touch-ups will be reduced to slim-to-none. It has become a life saver in my travel bag. (Ulta.com)

2. Youngblood Mineral Rice Setting Powder – When I first got this from the How to be a Redhead Subscription Box, I really wasn’t sure if I would use it since I have my fair share of non-talc setting powders. Plus the tint in this one made me hesitant since it was more of a yellowish powder. After the first time I used it, I knew it was going to be a go-to during my makeup application. The rice powder and corn starch base helps this powder keep the shine away all day and doesn’t irritate my sensitive skin. The powder sets perfectly clear with no color at all, leaving your face with a nice matte finish. (YBSkin.com)

3. Lancôme Monsieur Big Mascara – Aren’t we all really just in search of the ‘be all, save all” mascara of all time? I am and I’m sure I may never find it as long as mascaras keep improving their formulas. This one, however, is certainly damn good. One coat for daily wear, two coats for special occasions will leave your lashes looking long and luscious. The brush is really fat which gives you a nice even, full coat from base to tips. You may find the brush is hard to maneuver on the bottom lashes—I do—so I have disposable skinny wands for precise bottom lash and corner lash applications. (Lancôme-usa.com)

4. Kryolan Contour Pencil in 971 (Black) – I picked up some of these great pencils last year when I attended The Makeup Show in NYC. I saw them used by a fabulous makeup artist and thought that any pencil that can have that many uses and be that inexpensive must have some sort of down side. I have yet to find one! I learned that by lining the water line of my upper lid can help my hooded eyes to have more pop. And this pencil does it perfectly. I get a line that stays strong all day and comes off easily with eye makeup remover. Plus the tip can sharpened to your liking, and is soft enough to not tug at the skin around your eyes. (Kryolan.com)

5. No 7 Instant Illusion Wrinkle Filler – There are only so many miracles we can fix without hiring a plastic surgeon. I expected a full-blown face lift when I bought this product. Because I didn’t see that immediately, I put the tube off to the side. After a week or so, I decided to try it again with more realistic expectations. That’s when I saw what amazing things this actually does. Although it can’t hide deep deep laugh lines, it does fill in fine lines and wrinkles around my eyes, lips and forehead. It helps to defuse and reflect light giving my face an all-over smooth look. (Ulta.com)

6. Impäkt Organic Skin Care Glossing Lip Treatment – This winter has been hell on my skin. Especially my lips. I have always battled the chapped lips devil all through the year, but this year has been terrible. They haven’t been getting just chapped either. They split, peel, bleed and even get blotchy. I was lucky enough to try a sample of this (thanks to my friends at How to be a Redhead) little gem in Raw Cocoa and noticed an improvement in just days. Ingredients such as raw beeswax, sativa oil, raw honey and shea butter put healing nutrients into the skin and not just over it. The healing begins on a cellular level, which helps to prevent the problems before they occur. (impaktorganic.com) ** Watch my blog for reviews on more products from Impakt Organics soon!**

7. TwinMedix Pro:Refine Primer/Moisturizer – When time is of the essence, it is helpful to have products that can do multiple things at the same time. This is a nourishing moisturizer that not only preps and primes the face for smooth makeup application but it also plumps and firms giving your skin a nice all-over glow. Packed with rich hydration from shea butter and jojoba oil, this gem also gives your face boost of nourishing B5. Finish those great ingredients off with a touch of hyaluronic acid for a youthful appearance. (TwinMedix.com)

8. Crown Brush Tapered Concealer Brush C425 – Since I have been getting very precise and detailed with my eye looks, it is important to me to have a good concealer brush that is tight enough to get around my eyes with intricate accuracy. I have A LOT of brushes that I have picked up over the years, but this one is always clean and close by during my makeup application. It is small, fine and flat enough to hide skin imperfections while cleaning up any last minute fall out or errors in the area. (Crownbrush.com)

I wish the contents of my vanity only showed these few products plus a little more to be able to have everything I needed to do a full skin care and makeup look each day. Unfortunately, depending on a number of factors, I need all of that and MUCH MORE. No worries, though. I have managed to get my supplies organized in a way to have access to whatever I need at any given time. It is important for all of us to remember to keep our items clean and fresh. Remember to go through your entire product drawers once in a while (when you change the clocks is a perfect time!) to look, test and smell each item you have. Things can go bad, as well as pick up bacteria to make them “spoil”. One thing that is good to help you avoid the transfer of ickies is to scrape out just what you will need with a (clean) makeup spatula, put that on a stainless steel mixing plate (crownbrush.com, $8.95 for the combo) and apply it from there. Not only does this reduce the chance of your makeup acquiring bacteria but it also prevents color mixing.

With these new goodies, I plan on having fun trying and developing new looks for myself in the future. Do you have any new goodies to share that you have discovered are “must haves” in your glam box? Share with me and others so we can all know what is hot on the shelves!!

Yeay!….Spring?

24 Mar

According to the calendar, spring came on Monday this week. As I sit here at my desk, you might not believe that. There is a still a coating of snow on the ground from a two foot storm we got LAST week. Some of it has melted but today the temperature is bordering on freezing so the rain that is falling right now is a combination of rain, freezing rain and sleet. Fun, fun. Let your inner self feel my excitement. Can you? Yeah… I can’t either.

With the date saying one thing but the skies saying something else, what are glamour and fashionistas to do when they want to add a few new things to their fashion/glamour collection but don’t know how to integrate them into this fickle weather? I have been looking carefully for things that I can use now but can also transfer into my regular spring routine (or even summer!) when the temps balance out to where they should be. It can be frustrating, but if you do your research there are a few things you can grab now that will be great for this time of year AND continue to be a plus as the weather continues to brighten up.

So what has Sassy been using lately? Here are a few things you may want to check out:

**Victoria Secret PINK Hoodie** – A hoodie of any sorts is a great seasonal transitioning piece. If it’s cold, wear it under a warm jacket. If it’s warmer, wear it under something lighter like a leather coat. If it is getting “warm”, wear a jazzy tee and leave the hoodie opened up. The thing that is nice about a hoodie is that they are so versatile that you really can wear any type and any color in ANY season. Since spring is here, I thought I would add a really nice pastel pink hoodie to my collection. I own no pink clothes. No really…nothing. I never thought it looked good with my auburn hair. But the shade I recently got looks really awesome. The color is flattering, the hoodie fits well, it is warm…. oh! And it was on sale! Cha-Ching! This is a great item to find on sale now so keep your eyes open for one you like.
Victoria’s Secret, prices vary by style.

**DSW’s Black Ballet Flat** – A few days ago, it was nice enough out for me to put aside boots and high-top sneakers and actually pull out a pair of flats to wear with my skinny jeans. Woo Hoo! Well, that was until I tried on the pair I wanted to wear. I couldn’t even get my toes into them! I have put on a couple of WANTED and NEEDED pounds over the winter and it seems some of it went to my feet. Maybe? It could also be from the foot surgery I had almost two years ago. I went through and tried on all my flats and realized I need about three different styles of black flats. I ordered a pair of ankle lace ups, a pair of fancy small wedges and a cool pair of flats with “studs”. Thankfully, all the other flats I have fit just fine. Flats are a must-have shoe style when the temperatures start to rise. It may be too warm for boots, but it may be way too cool for sandals. Flats come in all styles now so don’t be afraid to add a couple of pairs you like.
DSW.com, $39.95

**Kat Von D Lock-It Concealer Crème** – I haven’t been one to use concealer much over the years. I’ve been lucky—the eye creams I have used have treated my eye area nicely, kept away dryness, and have prevented dark circles and fine lines. In my last Sephora order, I got a nice little sample of the KVD Concealer Crème and I put it on my vanity to try. This winter took its toll on my eyes a little bit. Over tired, stress, eye strain, even the sun. But after I tried the sample, I was VERY impressed. I will be honest…my face brightened right up! Not only does it do a great job at hiding little imperfections in the eye area (especially underneath) but it does an amazing job at illuminating my eye area AND face! This is great for this time of year because we often find that we need to moisturize our eyes more during the colder weather, but forget to use a product to brighten the skin around them. As it gets warmer, we can protect them from the sun to keep the eye area bright but often forget to use a gentle moisturizer. While we find the right product(s) that will help keep our eye area from aging, a good concealer can hide little tell-tale signs during the process. Kat Von D’s Concealer Crème does just that! The formula is gentle and the coverage is fabulous!
Katvondbeauty.com or Sephora, $26.00

**TwinMedix Pro: Essentials E5** – About a year ago, I attended The Makeup Show in NYC. It truly was a life changing adventure, both personally and professionally. I had the opportunity to meet with world-renowned makeup artist James Vincent who was a plethora of knowledge for me. When I mentioned I was frustrated with my sensitive skin and not being able to get my hands on good skin care near me, he told me to talk to Michelle Shaffer with TwinMedix. She was a doll. I explained to her that my skin gets irritated easily and I had to switch out brands and products depending on the season. She introduced me to the TwinMedix Pro line, explaining what each product did. Five simple products was the entire routine for day and night. Easy peasy. I have been using it faithfully ever since that day and my skin has never looked better! The one item, however, that I did not know how to put into the routine was the Essentials E5 product. Come to find out, this product is actually a MUST HAVE especially when seasons are changing. It contains pure Vitamin E which protects the skin from environmental damage while hydrating and soothing skin especially when it is exposed to harsh and changing weather conditions. It also calms sensitive skin like mine. I began to use it like a primer and I have noticed that no matter what it is doing outside, my skin feels soft and protected. I use it daily, along with my other TwinMedix products. It’s nice to have a great base to my look that doesn’t just smooth my skin but nourishes it as well!
TwinMedix.com, $90.00

**Paul Mitchell’s Super Skinny Serum** – Winter can do job on our hair. The heat, the cold, the wind, the dry air, you name it. I have a shelf… okay two… of products to use depending on what is up with my hair. Right now? I’ve got some dry ends to deal with. But earlier in the week, my hair felt oily and gummy. Ugh! I can’t keep a ton of things in the shower, so what do I do? Not to mention, my hair is color treated which doesn’t help me try to find products that won’t hurt my “enhanced” auburn tresses either. I try to find the best shampoos and conditioners for what my hair is going through and help it get healthy with those. What’s a challenge is, without extensive research, those two items can either help a lot or do even more damage if it contains chemicals that aren’t good for my hair. But when I get out of the shower, that is when I need a good product to keep my red hair in check. I need something that will smooth without leaving it feeling greasy. I need something that will give it shine without drying it out. I need something that will keep it soft without making it fly everywhere. I need something that will protect it without weighing it down. I need something that can gently “coat” each strand to keep it healthy. Oh…and I need something that can do ALL of that no matter what the weather or temperature is outside. It needs to give me what I need without checking a forecast first. PM’s Super Skinny Serum does just that. No matter what is going on outside, a small dollop of the Serum will smooth fly-away hair on dry & windy days, it will lightly condition and seal your hair strands keeping them healthy, and it will control your hair with a formula that keeps your hair shiny, silky and frizz-free in any weather. It is also an added bonus that the Serum will speed up your drying time so you hair is not wet in unhealthy elements, giving you the results you want in less time. The Super Skinny Serum is perfect for ALL hair types so it allows you to not just get the look you want but will also allow you to add it to your haircare routine without any interference. So no matter what the weather is outside, your hair doesn’t have to become damaged from it–just a bit of Paul Mitchell’s Skinny Serum will lock in the results you want.
Paul Mitchell Salons (see their website for locations), prices may vary.

So, are you ready to say goodbye to winter and welcome in the sunny days of spring? I know I am! Gently convert your wardrobe, skin care and hair care with these items and you can cut out some of the frustration of flip-flop weather and keep your routine on the straight and narrow!!

Please share!—Sassy wants to know what YOU have that helps you transition your fashion and beauty routine between seasons. Do you have any products that helps make these changes easier? Let me know!!

30 Days Of Beauty… Day 2

3 Jul

FluffBenter late than never, I say. Actually, I say it too much. Sometimes things get busy and I put things off. Other times, I just say “I’ll do it later.” That’s what I did today with this post. The problem was I took a nap when I got home earlier and woke up just in time to go to bed. *sigh*. Oh well, I’m (trying to) get Day 2 done before the clock strikes midnight. And that’s what counts. Right?

30DaysThis puts us at Day 2 which is “Daily Make Up Product”. This is tricky. I will have a product of one brand that I wear almost daily, but I have it in different colors, so in my opinion that really doesn’t count. I had to really look at stuff that is a daily use product, no matter what look I am wearing, what the temperature is, or what my skin feels like. A product that looks good and works well no matter what the conditions are. And yes… I have one.

Way back when, I fell in love with a big brand name micro powder that was the perfect setting powder I had ever used. It was luminous, colorless, evened out my look, and gave me a nice smooth finish to my face. I got a sample from Sephora and I fell in love. The only problem I had with it was it came from this high-end beauty store and was steep in price. Then, one of my absolute favorite “indie” makeup beauties told me she had a powder that was almost the same if not better. She sent me a full sized product to try just for an honest review on hers and other websites. It looked like the expensive stuff but with a touch of healthy shimmer (NOT glitter,–more like a light, sparkling glow). I got way more in this jar than I did with the other brand. And I used much less than the expensive stuff. What was even better? I was supporting an independent makeup “retailer” who takes pride in her products, containing natural ingredients while saving a good amount of money. Even though that jar of the “big brand” powder is still good and in my drawer?… I’ll still grab my new setting powder before any others. And I don’t think I’d ever change now!

So that brings us to my product choice for today. A High Definition Diamond Veil that softens the look of fine lines, reduces the appearance of pores, improves and evens out skin tone, smooths and mattifies your makeup look. I personally like the fact that it “seals” in my look, holding it strong all day. I don’t need touch ups, and if my day runs into overtime, a quick dusting will make it fresh again. It’s even easy to apply using a fluffy powder brush, with just a light layer dusted all over your finished makeup look. Then, you’re done–pretty powder perfect!

So, what’s this savior that is my must have? Easy…

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Day 2: Daily Make Up Product
L.A. Minerals’ High Definition Diamond Powder. Found only at http://www.LAMinerals.com , $19.99