The Stir Crazy Hurricane Wish List

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Well friends, I'm currently inside riding out the remnants of a hurricane that has left many places severely flooded and me severely stir crazy.  I've been staying with friends the past few days, but I'm headed back home tomorrow, where apparently there is no power or hot water, so I'm getting in all the showers and internet time I can today!  There's nothing like being stuck inside for 36 hours to get the imagination going and make you remember all the nice things you've been pining for, so without further ado, I give to you my Hurricane Wish List!

1. Pins and Needles Sweetheart Lace Dress: I love feminine styles like this that cinch the waist and flow out at the hips.  Plus, the lace sleeve is just such a nice detail.  I tend to wear dresses most days, and I could see myself getting a lot of use out of this one.

2. Jeffrey Campbell Mattie boot: I don't currently own any pairs of lace up boots, and these immediately caught my eye.  I love the edgy but still feminine look, and because I wear a lot of dresses, I think these would go really well with some of them and add the perfect amount of rock 'n' roll that I'm looking for!

3. LUSH Let the Good Times Roll face cleanser: I apparently cannot have enough face cleansers this year, and because this one is only around for Christmas, I want it even more!  I've had my eye on it from the day Lush's Christmas line was announced, and since then it's gotten a ton of rave reviews.  Plus, it has popcorn in it, so I mean...yes!

4. H&M Basic Black Sweater: My closet is severely lacking in basic staples like this.  This sweater could really help me out on days where planning my outfit is either impossible or just too much effort! 

5. Origins Drink Up Intensive overnight mask: Ever since I heard Anna from Vivianna Does Makeup talk about it, this mask has been at the top of my wish list.  My skin gets gradually drier in the autumn and winter months, and I have faith that this could really help restore my skin's moisture.  Plus, I've heard it smells like peaches and apricots!

6. Korres Cheek Butter in Rosy Pink: I swatched this when I went into Sephora the other day to pick up my Korres lip butter in Quince.  It was extremely pigmented and a really nice consistency, so I knew I'd have to pick one some time in the future.  I've had a lot of luck with almost all of the other Korres products that I've tried, and I have no doubt that this will do me just fine as well!

7. Soap & Glory No Clogs Allowed face mask: I've gone a little face mask crazy of late, however this is the most recent one that's wound up on my radar.  I haven't heard much about it, but I read some customer reviews on it, and they were all pretty positive.  It is self-heating, which intrigues me, and because I suffer from black heads from time to time, I'd like to have a product that I can use to just head them off whenever they show up, so that they don't  become a bigger problem.

8. Urban Decay Pore Perfecting Complexion Primer Potion: I've recently tackled my dull skin issue and have basically gotten that under control, so I figured it was time to address my next problem which is visible pores.  I realize that this product will only mask the problem, not fix it, but in the meantime whilst I try and get to the root of my very visible pores, I can at least experience what life would be like without them showing through my makeup!

Have you ever tried any of these products, and what do you think of them?  What products are on your current wish lists?

If you were anywhere near the path of this crazy hurricane, I hope you made it through alright.  Some of the worst parts hit were New York City and New Jersey, both of which I will be going back to tomorrow.  I am currently in Washington, DC and we're out of the woods now and luckily never lost power.  Wherever you are, I hope everything is good!


Soap and Glory's Righteous Body Butter

Sunday, October 28, 2012

I'd always heard a lot about Soap and Glory products, and I thought I'd test the waters by trying out the famed body butter.

It really is a dream!  It doesn't sit on the skin at all, and doesn't feel too greasy.  Plus it smells almost exactly like Miss Dior Cherie perfume, as my sister so helpfully pointed out.  So wins all round.

They sell them in Sephora in travel versions for only $5, so I mean I couldn't say no, could I?

Well that's it, super short today.  Have you tried this body butter?  Thoughts?  
Keep safe if you're anywhere near the path of this Franken-storm!


Because Celebrating Means Buying Expensive Lip Balm

Friday, October 26, 2012

It's no secret that being obsessed with beauty products is no inexpensive hobby.  I was starting to feel the sting myself of having a limited income stream, so I ventured out into the scary world of retail and submitted my resume to a smattering of stores I would be proud to work for.  Jump to two weeks later, and ta-da!!  I can now say with certainty that I do indeed have a job this holiday season!

And I thought, what better way to celebrate than by purchasing something I've had my eye on for ages. That something being a Korres lip butter.  If you watch any beauty gurus on youtube, you'll know that the Korres lip butters are somewhat of a cult favorite, however the lip glosses (they call them lip butter glazes) get hardly any air time at all.  This fact now confuses me, because mine is pretty great!

I chose the color Laurel, and it adds a nude sheen and a surge of moisture to the lips.  It's not tacky like some lip glosses can be, plus it smells exactly like a vanilla shake!

I also chose the lip butter in quince, and I can understand why these are such a hit in the beauty community!  While sticking my finger into a pot of product is not exactly ideal, the scent and payoff of this lip butter is so divine it's worth it.  It doesn't feel like it's sitting on the lips, and the color is definitely buildable.  You won't get get your lips looking exactly like the color that's in the pot, but the point of this product is more to moisturize the lips rather than accentuate them!

They sell them in packs of 3 now in Sephora for the price of 2, and there's a pack with 3 lip butter glazes in as well, so I will definitely be going back someday to pick up some more!

Have you tried any of the lip products by Korres?  What are some of your personal faves?


A Match Made in Combination Skin Heaven!! | LUSH Toner and Serum

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Just a quick check-in to let you all know I'm still at the blogging game!  I've got a huge exam coming up this weekend that may or may not determine my Master's program placement, so I am definitely feeling the stress.  I may be a bit MIA in the next few days, as my inspiration tends to leave me when I am experiencing moments of high anxiety, but then again, I may not!  I also feel it may be appropriate to tell you that I am not sponsored by Lush, due to the sheer amount of Lush posts I've written in the past month or so!  They don't pay me for these reviews and I haven't been sent these products for review or anything like that.  I am just genuinely excited by them, and happen to have made some recent purchases that I just had to photograph and share with the beauty blogosphere!  Bit of a sidenote, but I would like to say that even if I had been sent some products, I would never be disingenuous.  Gah, must work on shorter and sweeter intros!!

Anyway, I have had both the Full of Grace solid serum bar and A Breath of Fresh Air toner water for about two weeks now, and I happen to think that they work very well together.  I was dealing with dull skin at the time of my purchase, and still am but to a much lesser extent.  I'd never heard of either of these products before I bought them, as I'm usually one to research a product thoroughly before even considering buying it, but I made an impulse buy, and I am enjoying it immensely!  As usual with Lush products, I feel like I'm doing only good things for my skin when I use them.

The toner water smells of minerals and is reminiscent of the sea.  It truly does feel like a breath of fresh air, and believe me, that is more than welcome especially now that the weather's gone all cold and rainy.  I find this a very versatile and multi-use product.  I use it on a cotton pad to get off the last traces of makeup or face masks, as an all-over spray to eat up excess oil, as a pick-me-up throughout the day to refresh my makeup, and most often I spray it all over my face right before applying the serum to keep it from being too oily.  My skin is most decidedly indecisive and is usually somewhere along the spectrum of combination/oily, and this spray really does help to control oil and shine.  I enjoy the fact that it doesn't leave my skin too tight or too dry.  The aloe in it assures hydration of dry patches and a soothing feeling once spritzed.

If you're at all familiar with the Lush massage bars, then the feel and application of the serum bar won't surprise you.  All you do is rub it between your hands for a few seconds, and then spread the oil that transfers onto your face.  It smells of rose and lavender, sweet but definitely not subtle!  I tend to concentrate this serum around my eye area and in between my eyebrows, but it works just as well on all parts of the face.  I have gone nights using only the serum as my source of moisture, but if I'm going to apply an extra level like a night cream, I make sure it's oil free.  I've also worn this during the day under makeup, and I really do feel that it makes my foundation apply more easily.  Lastly, I was also recommended to apply Full of Grace right before using a face mask to make the mask more effective.  

Not sure how much truth there is to that, but I would like to reiterate the point that applying the toner right beforehand really balances out the oils in the serum and makes it a perfect match for my skin.  When applied together, my skin absorbs the serum well, and I don't feel like it's sitting on top of my face.  If I  ever do get that feeling, a quick spritz of the toner and it disappears!  These products both work well in tandem to give me more moisture where my skin is drier, and to absorb excess facial oils where there may be too much buildup. 

I hope you got something out of that stupid-long review!  I was trying to make this super short, but I guess I just can't help myself!

What are some of your favorite skin care combos?


P.S.: The next post will definitely not be to do with Lush, I promise!

Love, Lettuce Be True to One Another!

Monday, October 22, 2012

So it appears I'm on some sort of unconscious quest to test out all of the fresh face masks that Lush has to offer!  Last week, I traded in five empty black pots for a free face mask, as part of Lush's recycling program, and I chose Love Lettuce on the saleswoman's recommendation.  She told me it could help with the dull skin I had mentioned I was experiencing, and that it was what she used to keep her skin bright.

According to Lush, this mask is their most exfoliating.  It contains ground almonds which act as natural scrubbers, and help to clear away dead skin buildup.  Honey is also listed as an ingredient, and if any of you have ever made a homemade face mask that contains honey, you'll know that your face gets super glowy as a result!  They also say that Love Lettuce is ideal for all skin types, and I wouldn't argue with them on that.  I have borderline sensitive skin, and found all of the ingredients very soothing.

Upon opening the container, I was hit with quite an unexpected scent.  The green mask smelled very strongly of lavender, and while initially I found it off-putting, it has grown on me quite a bit since.  In my review of Brazened Honey (click!), my first ever Lush face mask, I mentioned that the texture was reminiscent of cold porridge.  Love Lettuce is completely different, in that it has a much smoother application, and bits of it will definitely not fall off your face!  Both of these masks contain ground almonds, but Love Lettuce's ingredient list is missing the potentially stinging fruit juices that Brazened Honey contains.  It feels almost like a gel when applied, and because you have to keep them in the fridge, I find it's very soothing and cooling.  Definitely a better choice for people with sensitive skin.

In terms of effectiveness, I think this mask works best when you apply a thicker layer of it.  The first time I used it, I was a bit stingy and only applied a thin, transparent layer.  I didn't see the kind of results I was anticipating, so I made sure to use a nice thick slather of it the second time.  And what a difference that made!  I was so impressed with the brightness levels of my skin, that this mask has surpassed Brazened Honey in my book (and I loved that mask).

As the mask dries, it may pull on the skin a little bit, however it's important to remember that this mask isn't supposed to dry completely.  I left it on for the recommended 10ish minutes, and found that a perfect amount of time required to see great results.  When washing it off, I used the technique I was taught by the woman who sold me Brazened Honey, which was to get the mask wet and rub it into your face as though it were a scrub, and THEN wash it off.  This works well because of the ground almonds.

After the final traces of the mask were washed off, I applied my nighttime moisturizer as usual and could definitely see a noticeable difference in my skin's smoothness and brightness levels.  I think it's safe to say it's love (pun intended)!

What is your favorite Lush fresh face mask?  If you haven't tried any, what's your favorite face mask in general?


Ginger HEAVEN | Paul Mitchell Awapuhi Intensive Treatment

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Oh hey, don't mind me.  I'm just currently flailing on the floor in ecstasy over the scent of this hair treatment, nbd.  How did I get here?  I'll tell you.  I simply opened the top, had a sniff, and promptly fell backwards, the scent is THAT. GOOD.

No but in all seriousness, I really did fall backwards after smelling this.  I don't know what Paul Mitchell got up to in his little lab o' hair, but I for one am not complaining.  If the sound of ginger milk floats your boat, then this intensive hair treatment will not disappoint!  The gingery scent doesn't hang around all day after washing your hair, but you'll be searching for ways to discreetly smell yourself for at least a few hours.

If you, like I was initially, are wondering what Awapuhi is, allow me to enlighten you.  It is essentially a really fancy word for tropical ginger plants.  Interestingly enough, supposedly all of the awapuhi that has ever been used in Paul Mitchell's hair care line of the same name, has come from Hawaiian land that he and business partner John Paul DeJoria purchased back in the 1980s.  Awapuhi juice has also been known to be used by Hawaiian natives to moisturize the hair and skin.  Pretty neat, yeah?

In terms of product effectiveness however, good old Paul sort of missed the mark for me.  This treatment was specially formulated for individuals with damaged hair, and is supposedly ideal for those with color treated or chemically processed hair (guilty), but to be completely honest, I don't think it's effective enough to justify the price.  I bought the smallest size I could find, which is 3.4 oz/100 ml, and I think after all was said and done, I still spent almost $20 on it!

This is one of those products whose effectiveness gets more apparent the longer you leave it on, so if you have the time to leave it in your hair for more than the recommended 5 minutes (I leave it in an average of 10-15 minutes), I say go for it.  I did notice that my hair was a little softer after using this a few times, but unfortunately that was about it.  My frizz was little improved, and this product can weigh the hair down.  Paul does offer a little disclaimer on the bottle however, that goes something like 'If this doesn't work, it's because you didn't buy this at a hair salon, ok.'  I would still like to try other products from Paul Mitchell, most especially ones from his curly-haired line.  

On another note, I am still not over how beautiful this scent is, like when I say I love ginger, THIS is the scent I'm referring to.  If I could marry a smell, this would be it.

Well, I'm sure a good portion of you think I'm off my rocker by now, so I'll just wrap up the review here, but please do yourself the favor of at least smelling this product if you ever find yourself near it.  It is kind of hard to find, and I believe is mostly available in salons, but I got mine on Amazon.  Overall, I think this would work really well for people with damaged hair, as it definitely help with softness.  The only reason I was let down was because it was recommended to me as way to help fight frizz.  It doesn't do much for frizzy hair, but it will definitely lend a hand if you've got heat damage or color treated hair.

What are some of your favorite dry hair solutions?  Any product recommendations?

Thanks for reading!  Laters!

Most Reached for Beauty Products: Fall Edition!! | Video

Friday, October 19, 2012

I can't believe I actually made another youtube video!  I never stick with things for very long, so from here on out, every upload will surprise me, I'm sure.  I've always enjoyed these kinds of videos as they're sort of like Fall Favorites, but a bit modified and just really interesting (I hope!).  I love seeing what people wear more often as the seasons change.  I had to edit my choices a lot, as there were a ton more things I wanted to include, but I just had to stop myself before this got even more ridiculously long!

I hope this doesn't completely bore you, and please let me know what you reach for most often in the Fall.  I always love to hear other's recommendations!

Products mentioned:

Thanks for watching, laters!!

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