Tag Archives: economy buster

Keep Your *Beautiful* Tan Year-Round with a Drugstore Bargain

LOreal Sublime Bronze Luminous Bronzer Self-Tanning LotionSummer’s almost over. Time to face a fading fall tan and then a pale winter. Or is it? Wanna keep your beautiful glow all year? Chances are you’ve tried self-tanners before. Maybe you found one you like. Most of us — me included — have not. I’m one of those gals whose fair skin doesn’t take well to self-tanners. I end up looking like a(n even more) ridiculous version of Lindsey Lohan, all orange and streaky. Well all that’s over.

I know I’ve been on a big L’Oreal kick lately, and guess what? It ain’t over. L’Oreal recently introduced their Sublime Bronze line, and I’m in love. My pale-skinned self can’t get enough of one self-tanner in particular, Luminous Bronzer. It’s touted as a lotion, but I’d call it more of a lotion-gel…or gel-lotion…whatever. It’s pretty awesome.

With light-reflecting “micro-particles” LB instantly illuminates your skin so you can SEE where you put it on, and then it gradually develops into a NATURAL-looking glowy tan — with NO STREAKS. To keep your skin healthy, Luminous Bronzer contains alpha-hydroxy acids to keep your skin soft and smooth along with vitamin E to provide anti-oxidant benefits to your skin. Plus it has a nice, fresh scent that’s invigorating but not overwhelming. At about $10 for a generous 6.7 oz. it’s a bargain indeed.

One thing to note: Luminous Bronzer does NOT contain sunscreen. Since it DOES contain alpha hydroxy acid (AHA), it can increase your skin’s sensitivity to the sun and the possibility of sunburn, so be sure to add a good layer of SPF 30 sunblock if you go outside after applying LB.

Less Wrinkles with 24-Hour Eye Repair

l'oreal revitalift deep set wrinkle repair eye creamFeaturing another new product with a long name from L’Oreal: Revitalift Deep-Set Wrinkle Repair 24-Hour Eye Repair Duo.

With such a serious(ly long) name, you’d expect serious(ly good) results along with a serious(ly expensive) price. Well, that’s about half true.

The results? Good. I’ve been using Revalift’s new eye cream duo for about three to four weeks, and I can definitely see a visible lift to my upper eye lid. I recently celebrated by 39th birthday, so this was a nice bonus. Plus the skin around my eyes is softer and more pliable.  FYI: for full wrinkle-free results, L’Oreal recommends using the eye cream duo day and night for eight weeks, so I expect more magic to come.

L’Oreal has put together a very nice eye repair duo chock full of some heavy-duty silicones, polymers, moisturizers, and emollients along with sun protection in the Day/AM cream, caffeine in the Night/PM cream, and most impressive, Pro-Retinol A aka retinyl palmitate  which is a vitamin A derivative — it’s near the bottom of the ingredient list meaning there’s very little of it compared to the other stuff…though according to my research a little goes a long way with this powerful anti-oxidant.

Retinol is what targets and fixes your wrinkles. The caffeine in the Night/PM cream acts to reduce puffiness. We like. And the SPF 15+ (yes, it does say “+” — not sure what that means but whatever) in the Day/AM cream is gentle and effective. The skin around my eyes is sensitive and gets red and irritated when I use sunscreen, but Revitalift AM gives me no problems whatsoever.

Other pluses include a rich, non-greasy formula that spreads easily = no tugging. And they last well, so your small investment is well worth it. Speaking of price, you can pick it up this power-packed beauty duo at almost any drugstore for less than $20.

Eyeing L'Oreal for Volume and Wear

L'Oréal Paris - Extra Volume Collagen MascaraL’Oreal Paris recently released *another* new mascara, this one called Extra Volume Collagen Mascara. It touts lush and luxurious lashes with hydra-collagen (?) for super-duper volume. A pretty, sleek black tube reveals the biggest, fattest mascara brush you’ve seen. Seriously. Thick.

Admittedly, I was skeptical. I had to see just what sort of super-duper volume we were talking about. Well, I was certainly not underwhelmed, but at the same time, I’m not sure it lives up to “12x more impact, instantly.”

It takes a few coats to build up to 12x more impact (whatever that is), but recently I had a lash curler incident and ended up yanking out half the lashes on my right eyelid. Fun times. Extra Volume Collage Mascara was a godsend. It actually helped hide my goof by amply thickening the lashes around the missing ones. Cool. L’Oreal’s website even features a great “how to apply” video.

Other pluses include little-to-no flaking and nearly smudge-proof wear. And some of the nicer ingredients include sodium hyaluronate, which has been shown to “plump” by holding onto about 10x its weight in water, and atelocollagen which, simply put is a water-soluble form of collagen (a protein) commonly used in cosmetics. So there ya go…the mysterious hydra-collagen is revealed.

One word of caution: unless you want spider-leg lashes (why?), don’t use a mascara base with Extra Volume Collagen. Otherwise, it’s a very nice volumizing, long-wear mascara indeed. And at around $8, key your eye out for this one.

Embrace Your Softer Side

Tousled hair - NEW Tousle Me Softly hairstyling products - Herbal EssencesHerbal Essences hair products aren’t normally on my radar. I generally prefer salon brands that aren’t so heavily perfumed. But recently I had the chance to try out their new Tousle Me Softly line, and ya know what? I like it. A lot.

Tousle Me Softly claims “soft tousles that beg to be touched – not that they need to beg. And hey, since we work well together to create one luscious look, it’s almost mistake-proof!” Well, okay. Minus the exclamation, I concur.

Featuring six ways to tousle, shampoo for a tousled look, conditioner for a tousled look, mousse for easy tousling, tousling spray gel, flexible hold hairspray, and finishing touch cream is all packaged in deep pretty purple bottles and jars.

The shampoo and conditioner smell of pomegranate and wild violets. They clean and condition without stripping or weighing hair down. The mousse is nice and light as is the hairspray, and no crunchies (yay!). My hair is super short — think Halle Barry — and I really like the finishing touch cream. It adds an element of sculptability without stiffness. Best of all, Tousle Me Softly does just what it says: it leaves hair touchable, soft and shiny. Bouncy even.

So for Hollywood’s hottest summer hair looks (think Halle Berry or Taylor Swift), give Tousle Me Softly a try. You’ll be glad you did.

$5 DIY Cleanser for Skin As Soft 'n Smooth As a Baby's Butt

Yesterday I ran out of my mediocre foaming facial cleanser — I use it because it was expensive and it removes my makeup pretty well, but frankly, it’s pretty much so-so. Well, in a pinch I used a little olive oil and a warm washcloth to remove my eye makeup last night. Aside from the obvious oiliness, I was quite pleased that my makeup came off completely and lickety-split, plus my skin stayed soft and supple around my eyes.

Today, instead of heading off to the department store in search of another high dollar, mediocre facial cleanser, I decided to make my own.

Based on the oil cleansing method — the gist of which insists that the best way to remove dirt and oil from your skin is to use oil (sort of like fight fire with fire?) — I grabbed some ingredients from my kitchen cupboard and bathroom medicine cabinet and got to work.

The result of my efforts was a cleanser than not only cleansed my face without stripping it but one that also made my skin super-smooth and soft.

Here’s the recipe and what I did:

In a kitchen mixing bowl, I threw in about 1/2 cup of olive oil, two tablespoons of liquid bath soap (castile or whatever you have is fine) two tablespoons of water, one tablespoon of plain glycerin (available at your local drugstore) and 1/2 teaspoon of Optiphen, a paraben-and-formaldehyde free preservative. Then I whisked everything together and poured it into my old facial cleanser bottle. That’s it.

I applied about a quarter-sized portion to my face and neck, massaged in circular motions for a minute and rinsed. Ah, clean, soft, smooth skin.

Total cost for my new fabulous facial cleanser? Because I typically buy organic stuff, my version may be a little pricier than yours’ll be. All told, I made 4 oz. of safe, pure, effective, anti-aging, skin-softening cleanser for about $6.

Optional ingredients:

Also quite inexpensive, these ingredients can be found at bulk soap-making/skin care ingredient suppliers, health food stores or handicraft stores. Warning: If you add any of these to your recipe, be careful around your eyes as they could irritate and sting.

  • Alpha hydroxy acid – I always have some lactic acid in my bathroom cabinet (I know, I’m weird that way). Used regularly and in the proper amount, AHAs are gentle and effective anti-aging exfoliants. Add a teaspoon or so to this recipe.
  • White willow bark extract – a great source of salycin or beta hydroxy acid, WWBE is one of the best, most gentle exfoliants available. Plus it helps keep pores clean and blemishes at bay. 1/2 to one tablespoon is ample.
  • Essential oil – I like lavender because it’s good for your skin for countless reasons, and it smells divine. Other good ones include heliochrysum, lemongrass, tea tree, Clary sage, rosemary, sandalwood, rose or chamomile. Add a few drops up to 1/4 teaspoon to suit. Start with just a little to be sure it doesn’t irritate your skin — you can always add more later if you want.

How're Your Showers? Ne Plus Ultra!

New from Caress, the Evenly Gorgeous line includes a luscious body wash and beauty bar (aka soap) surely inspired by a Tahitian goddess.  Formulated with burnt brown sugar (why burnt? take a whiff and you’ll figure it out…yummy goodness) and karite butter, these bathing agents exfoliate while cleansing, moisturizing and treating your skin to a tropical spa-like experience.

I know you’re thinking, “What the heck’s karite butter?” We in the West know it better as shea butter, and according to LibertyNatural.com, “What makes shea butter so great for the skin is its high content of fatty acids — stearic and oleic acids. These fatty acids are indispensable for moisturizing and retaining the elasticity of the skin. By making up for lipid (fat) deficiency in the epidermal cells, shea butter provides the skin with all the essential elements it needs for its good balance.” Moisturizing, nourishing and skin toning qualities — plus it smells good? Okay. I’m in.

Speaking of smell, Evenly Gorgeous’ scent is nutty and sugary but not too sweet or overpowering. At once sensuous and delicious, you’ll step out of your shower smelling divine and with soft, supple skin. And because of the added moisturizers, Evenly Gorgeous cleansers serve double-duty as excellent shaving soaps.

A great value, Caress Evenly Gorgeous body wash is a generous 18 oz. for about $7 while the beauty bars are around $8 for six 4 1/4 oz. bars.

Get 'em While They Last

Don’t ya love getting something for free? You’re in luck. Beauty.com and Loiter T-Shirts are featuring some beautiful gifts with purchase and freebies. Of course, time and quantities are limited so if you want ‘em, get ‘em now.

Beauty.com

  • Exclusive! Get a free Korres deluxe sample shower gel with your Beauty.com bath and body purchase!
  • With every $45 philosophy purchase, receive a free travel sized amazing grace shimmer lotion
  • With every $45 Juice Beauty purchase, receive a free 4oz. Cleansing Gel (a $15 value)
  • Buy $30 of Jonathan Product and receive a free travel size of IB Conditioner ($10 value)
  • Exclusive! Get a free deluxe sample of DDF Brightening Cleanser with your Beauty.com skin care purchase!
  • Loiter T-shirts

  • $2.00 off each item purchased, enter Coupon Code “2offeach” at check out
  • Buy two t-shirts get one FREE, enter Coupon Code “free” at check out
  • Buy three t-shirts and get FREE domestic shipping (USA only), enter Coupon Code “freeship” at check out

    Beauty.com

  • Cotton Swabs Aren't Just for Babies

    Q-Tips Designer Vanity BoxesOriginally called “Baby Gays” (seriously), Q-Tips entered the market in 1923.

    These days, you might find a cheaper cotton swab, but there’s no substitute for the real thing. Fluffy tufts of cotton wrapped around a sturdy paper shaft. Genius.

    Over the years, Q-tips expanded their uses to include ear health, cuts ‘n scrapes hygiene, fixing nail polish goofs and most applicably (pun intended), makeup application. They’re perfect for achieving the perfectly blended smoky eye look and soft, subtle face contouring.

    Not only has the Q-tip become the cotton swab we all reach for, their packaging has become more and more sophisticated too. No longer are you limited to the blue or white dispenser reminiscent of tupperware.

    In fact, recently Q-tips released some really cute new vanity packs that are suitable — heck, designer — enough for any bathroom counter. The new boxes hold 285 swabs and are available for around $3 in funky, pretty patterns on a field of either red, blue, purple or yellow. Now your Q-tips can be displayed on your vanity-top right and look beautiful next to your loveliest make-up and accessories. For makeup professionals, this box is pretty enough to take along on any make-up gig — your brides will LOVE it.

    This Ain't Your Mama's Chapstick

    Chapstick True ShimmerGrowing up, my grandmother always kept a tube or two of chapstick in her pocketbook. I can still remember the waxy feeling and slightly medicinal smell when she would drag it across my lips.

    Chapstick’s come a long way since then. Even since the days of Suzy Chapstick (remember her?). With soft, moisturizing formulas that glide on silky smooth, they leave your lips equally so. No more “drag,” no more strange pharmaceutical smells.

    This season’s latest addition to the Chapstick family, Chapstick True Shimmer provides the moisturizing benefits you’ve come to expect from a good lip balm, plus it adds shimmering highlights and a burst of mouthwatering scent and flavor. Beautiful on it’s own, True Shimmer also looks (and smells) perfectly marvelous layered over your favorite lipstick.

    Currently available in Botanical Berry and Tropical scents, Chapstick True Shimmer will add Peppermint Rush and Fruit Sherbet in July. I’ve been lucky enough to sample these new scent-flavors, and I just have to say I’m kind of addicted to the Fruit Sherbet. It reminds me of my favorite childhood fizzy soft drink, Tiki Punch. Plus, even in the high desert climate of Santa Fe, my lips are soft and smooth. At $2.79, it’s the bargain of the summer.

    Hey, healthy looking lips are more noticeable and more beautiful, and what girl doesn’t want a subtle shimmer? So, maybe it’s time to add a subtle highlight and luscious flavor to yours.

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