Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Skin (& Life) Changing Lotion

Hello beauties!  I've missed you!  I guess I should've mentioned before about what the frequency of my blogs would be during my block exams.  Pretty much non-existent, as you have now experienced.  But, I will say that once blocks are over, it's Beauty time!  =)

OK, so first I wanted to announce that if you are love Benefit's brow bar @ Macy's Sun Valley, they are offering FREE brow waxes ($20 value) this Saturday with every $50 purchase!  I bet you can imagine how I felt when I told the lovely gal from Benefit who called me to book me for this event that I couldn't make it.  =(  If you can attend, however, I would call them now to reserve your spot!  (925) 689-3333 Sun Valley Macy's.

All right, so I wanted to dedicate an entire blog to this wonderful product that really can be life-changing.  Especially for those who are concerned with: dryness, rough-ness, and saggi-ness (hahaha are those words?!).  This product is Nivea Body Skin Firming Lotion Q10 Plus.  I have been using this product for almost 10 years now and my skin thanks me for this!  This body lotion is creamy and lightweight and ultra moisturizing.  When I bought this product I wasn't looking for a firming body lotion, but guessed I could give it a shot.  Shortly after using it daily (~2 weeks) my skin was 100% different.  It made my skin soft beyond soft, smooth, and even.  I wouldn't describe my skin as being "firm", but rather to comment on what I think this product is targeting, my skin does not look its age!  =P  Plus, my husband still can't get enough of how soft my skin is!  This lotion is on sale this week at Target, so I suggest you pick some up and try it for yourself.  One bottle lasts a long time ~3 months.  Or if you want to go for the value size, I bought mine at Costco and it's been going strong for the past 9 months so far...

Just wanted to also share my exfoliating routine with you too...  When I shower, I prefer washing with a washcloth and soap (Oil of Olay Body Quench.  I freakin' love this bar soap!  Try it out too!)  and then I exfoliate with a mesh body sponge with body wash.  I do the exoliating step as often as every to every other shower 'cause sometimes I'm lazy, hee-hee.  I believe this routine followed by the Nivea lotion both contribute to my soft skin.  (Sorry if it sounds like I'm bragging.  I'm just really, really pleased with these products.)

If you already use these products or try them after reading this post, please share your thoughts with me!  Thanks!

***Beauty steals & deals- 50% off all Rimmel London Cosmetics @ Walgreens.***

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

How to Shop for Cosmetics Online

Hey pretty girls!  Or should I say pretty people?!  =)  I just wanted to give you all a really quick browsing tip that I use when I shop for cosmetics online (which is OFTEN), that actually will work for basically anything that you're shopping for online!  First off, make sure you're browsing on a site that has purchaser ratings ie. sephora.com or ulta.com, then instead of just reading the reviews the way they are automatically listed, change the review rating sort order from "low to high".  By doing this, you'll get to read the reviews from the people who didn't like the product and why they didn't like it.  Those reviewers may dislike a product for the exact reason why you're looking for it, which would help you tremendously in deciding whether to buy it or not.  I ALWAYS use this technique and I find that it does deter me from adding things to my basket and I like that.  Because, think about it, if you only read the highest reviews on a product (which are the ones that are usually listed first) then you're going to get a biased opinion given by only the people who loved the product.  I say, read a few bad reviews, get an honest opinion, then read a few good reviews and make your decision.  You'll be happier with your purchases, I'm sure!  =)

P.S.  I just thought about this and you really don't even have to use this technique just for shopping/buying online.  You could do your research online and then head to the store and buy it instantly if you want!  =)  For drugstore products, ulta.com, walgreens.com, and target.com all offer online ratings.  Happy Shopping!

Weekly Deal: All Revlon cosmetics and tools 40% off at Walgreens!

Monday, March 14, 2011

First super beauty quickie posted from my iPhone! Review for L'oreal De-Crease shadow primer: Love it! It helped my everyday eyeshadow stay on all day. Is it better than UD Primer Potion? No, but it is an acceptable substitute for it! I would recommend this product to beginners or for those who are trying to save money! Beauty mark: B+

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Rock & Republic Review

Hey lovlies!  So, I received my Rock & Republic makeup order from hautelook.com yesterday and I was able to try the powder and the lip gloss this morning and I wanted to tell you about them...


Rock & Republic Pressed Powder in Satin- It is a great color for me, smooth and silky formula, and a great price ~$13- all in the CUTEST, METAL compact ever!  I feel like a *ROCKSTAR* holding it!

Rock & Republic lip gloss in Sexy Beast- Highly pigmented, super comfortable feel, gorgeous, opaque color (I'd describe it as raspberry with a slight irridescence) at a great price ~$7 and in a super cute tube too!

I am so happy with my purchases from Rock & Republic and definitely will be buying from them on hautelook.com again in the future!  =) 

Monday, March 7, 2011

Beauty Quickie- Makeup Shopping Spree!

OK so don't tell my husband this, but since Ash Wednesday is coming very, very soon, I have felt the need to makeup shop A LOT more than usual to try and get it out of my system before I give it up entirely for lent this year.  I just can't help myself!  Plus, I don't want to be without any makeup necessity during those 40 days and 40 nights and/or be in a sticky situation where I can't go out and buy what I need!  Anyhow, here is a quick and dirty list of what I've bought this week so far!  Hope you all have a great week!  Not sure when a full length blog will come again since exams are coming up and I won't have time to write...  But, I will definitely fit in another beauty quickie one day soon though!

MAC Fluidline in Dipdown

MAC Select Sheer Foundation in NC 37

MAC Studio Careblend Pressed Powder in Medium Plus (*A new product, I cannot wait to try!)

Kiss Brand Luxury False Eyelashes- 4 pairs #'s 02, 03, 07 & 08.  On sale for $1.99 at your local Walgreens now!  They look super cute!

Revlon ColorBurst Lipstick in Peach- Love the way this formula feels on my lips!  Sheer and pretty, but remember that most sheer colors aren't that long lasting...  Beauty Mark: B+

Revlon Matte Lipstick in Nude Attitude

Revlon Colorstay Lipliner in Rose

Revlon PhotoReady Translucent Finisher- Matte setting powder with this line's signature sparkle/light-reflecting pigments.  Beauty Mark: A-

Revlon PhotoReady Compact Makeup in Cool Beige

Revlon Matte Blush in Wine with Everything- Matte blush indeed.  Pretty plum color!  Beauty Mark: B

Revlon Colorstay Liquid Eyeliner in Brownish Black and Black- Long lasting, intensely pigmented, classic liquid liners.  Beauty Mark: B+

L'oreal Lineur Intense in Carbon Black- Thanks Zee for the recommendation!

L'oreal De-Crease Eyeshadow Base- I read on ulta.com that this product is comparable to UD's primer...  I'll just have to test that out!

Rimmel 1000 Kisses Lip Pencil in Tiramisu and Spice- Super inexpensive and super pretty!  I am in love with both of these now!  The color selection of these liners is great too!  Beauty Mark: A

Wet n Wild coloricon Eyeshadows in Silent Treatment and Comfort Zone- Drugstore gems!  I've tried one of these palettes and I was super impressed!  I bought these palettes for $2.54 & $4.24 after my 15% off discount.  Such a great buy!  Thank you Zee for introducing these to me!  (Btw, check out my gorgeous friend Zee's YouTube page @ jzmalaia)

Maybelline Mineral Power Finishing Veil- I needed something that would just set my makeup without adding or taking away from my foundation's color and this does just that.  Great price tag too of $8.99!  Beauty Mark: A

Conair extreme focus Compact Mirror- Extra large, jumbo compact mirror with two maginfications: 1x and 10x!  Another one of those instances where something larger than usual turns out to be cute!

***This week's Beauty Deals & Steals- 40% off all Cover Girl Makeup @ Rite Aid!***

OK I think that's it for now...  Goodnight beauties!  =)

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Beauty Quickie

I think I'm going to call all of my really short quick posts "Beauty Quickies"!  Cute, right?  And in these I'll just post really short and sweet reviews or acquisitions or tips as they come to mind!  I'm also thinking of posting by texts, but we'll see how those look.  OK well here's my first beauty quickie...

MAC Lady Gaga 2 lipstick and lipglass- Both are very nude and very brown.  Muddy actually, but pretty mud.  I always feel great when I buy a Viva Glam lipstick because 100% of the proceeds benefit the MAC Aids fund, so when I bought these I just thought of them as a gift that came with my donation!  =)  As for the colors, they are only OK.  I have to wear them with a liner that has more color to warm them up.  I tried and liked the MAC Spice lip pencil with them, but I basically filled in (almost) my entire lip (upper and lower) with it and then swiped the lipstick on and dabbed the lipglass on to finish.  If you love Lady Gaga and want to buy one of these, I would recommend the lipstick over the gloss.  JMO.  Beauty Mark: C+

{Beauty Mark definition: I figured that because I am a professional student (not just a student in professional school, but a professional at being a student, lmao) that it would make more sense if I rated products by giving them a beauty grade, or rather a "Beauty Mark", hee hee.  So cute, right?  I'll have to trademark it!}

Revlon PhotoReady Concealer Stick- 004 Medium.  Ooooh it has sparkles!  Hahaha, well kinda.  I love the texture of this concealer and love the yellow-ness of this shade.  It is true it does have a little shimmer in it, but that's only because it's supposed to make you look "photo ready" in any light.  Hey, I'm down with that.  Beauty Mark: A-

MAC Cremesheen Glass- Richer, Lusher.  Very cute coral shade for spring/summer.  Falling in love more and more with the Cremesheen formula, which is super moisturizing and super comfortable.  Can't wait to wear this to my IPPE tomorrow!  =)  Beauty Mark: A

The Products I Cannot Live Without

Hello beauties!  I wanted to dedicate this blog to all of the products that have become my favorites through the years and the reasons why they are my favorites...  In this post (and in all of my posts) I promise to give you my HONEST and TRUE opinion on products 'cause I would never want to lead you down the wrong path to beauty.  Even though I love MAC and other more "expensive" brands of makeup, I am still the type of gal who LOVES finding bargains and I get really excited when I find quality makeup at drugstores (have you noticed?!).  All in all, I just want everyone to be happy with their beauty finds/purchases.  With that, here we go!  =)

Just FYI- My skin type: Combination/Dry.  I still get occasional breakouts too (ugh, when will they ever end?!).  My skin tone is in the C40, NC35-NC40 range.  (I only say C40 because only Studio Fix Powder comes in C's. I "wish" every MAC foundation formula came in C's...)

Neutrogena Fresh Foaming Face Wash- In the blue pump bottle.  Have been using this product since 2004. Why I <3 it: it's lightly foaming, non-drying, and it takes off ALL makeup from foundation to liquid eyeliner.  Cost: $6

Clinique Mild Exfoliating Lotion- Toner for sensitive skin types.  Have been using this product since 1999.  Why I <3 it: it is the mildest/least harsh of all the exfoliating lotions from Clinique, it is alcohol free, and it contains beta hydroxy acid 0.5%.  (Trust me on this.  I am studying to become a doctor!)  This is a great exfoliating agent and at this strength it is not irritating at all.  Helps my skin "feel" soft and less tight.  Best prep for moisturizer.  It also de-flakes visible flakes instantly.  Absolutely cannot live without this product!  Cost: $11

MAC Studio Fix Moisture Lotion- Buttery rich moisturizer without SPF.  Have been using this product since 2004.  Why I <3 it: Best moisturizer for dry skin PERIOD.  One bottle lasts for about 6 months too.  It is thick and buttery, but NOT greasy.  It never leaves my skin looking oily even after a full day of wearing it.  In love with this moisturizer, for real.  However, I just found it on the MAC Good bye list, which means they are taking it away, so if you can still find it at a MAC counter, you should buy a few to stock up!  Buy a few for me too, hee hee!  Cost: $29.50

MAC Select SPF Foundation- NC 37.  Why I <3 it: It's the best foundation in their entire line because it is the most natural looking when applied, IMO.  It is basically a simple, everyday foundation with a wonderful texture and finish.  Coverage is medium and beautiful.  My only complaint (if you would call it that) is that it runs light, so I have to buy a darker color than my norm.  No biggie though.  Cost: $26.50

MAC Studio Fix Powder Foundation- C 40.  Why I <3 it: Old school powder foundation.  Cake at its finest.  Have been using this since senior year in high school and I still love it.  I keep it in my purse for when I need touch ups anytime.  Great beauty tip- I use this with the puff to nude out my lips before apply lip liner and lipstick.  Helps the colors to pop and helps colors to last really long!  Cost: $26.50

MAC Sheertone Blush in Blushbaby- Pinky, nudey blush.  (MAC describes it as beige-pink.)  Why I <3 it: Long wearing, highly pigmented (but never too much), matte and PERFECT.  Cost: $18.50

Urban Decay Primer Potion- Cult favorite and my favorite.  Why I <3 it: This is the best eyeshadow primer in the world.  When I describe it to my friends I always say that you can use this primer along with your eyeshadows and even after a night full of clubbing you can come home and it will still look as though you just applied your eye makeup!  It IS that good!  Cost: $18

Benefit Stay Don't Stray Primer- More like a concealer really.  Why I <3 it: I actually use this product EVERY DAY as an undereye concealer and eyelid prep rather than a primer.  It is about a shade lighter than my skin tone- which I think a concealer should be- and it mattes and brightens my eye area instantly.  Very dry texture, so if you have dry eyelids, I would not recommend this.  For days when I only wear eyeliner and mascara (which is often) this is the only thing I will use on my eyelids.  As a primer for shadows, it is only OK.  (I'd rather apply my UD Primer instead!)  Also, the bottle lasts forever!  I've been using mine for a year so far and it still has a lot of product.  (I realize the package lists the lifetime of this product as 6 months, but I don't care.  I only go by the lifetime duration of 6 months for mascara, which gives me an excuse to buy a new mascara at least that often!)  Cost: $28 (a little expensive, but worth it.)

C.O. Bigelow Rosebud Salve- Not just a lip balm, an everywhere balm.  Why I <3 it: This is my all time favorite lip balm! But it's actually more than a lip balm, it's a balm you can put anywhere...  Your face, your hands, your cuticles, your eyes, your butt (hahaha, inside joke with Maribelle and me)!  But seriously, I love this little tin of rose scented goodness!  Cost: $6

Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler- Best on the market.  Why I <3 it: I used to think the Shiseido curler was the best until I bought this one.  Wow.  It's so wonderful.  A must have for everyone!  Cost: $19

MAC Brushes 263 & 266- Sisters, but not twins.  Why I <3 them: These brushes are essentially the same.  Both are angle brushes for the eyes, but the 263 is synthetic hair while the 266 is natural hair.  I own two 263s: one for my fluidline eyeliner and the other for outlining my eyebrows.  This brush is best for making thin, very precise lines.  It helps me achieve what I call the "MAC eyebrow" and the best line (thin or thick) on my eye!  The 266 is the classic brow brush and I use it for filling in my brows.  It's totally awesome.  Cost: $17.50 & $19.50 (FYI the 263 brush is $17.50 in MAC stores, but $20 online.  Weird, huh.)

MAC Plushglass- Ample Pink.  Perfectly nudey, pinkey gloss.  Why I <3 it: Signature MAC vanilla scent with a very, very slight tingle.  Not as sticky as lipglass, which I think is a good thing.  This gloss is the bomb.  I'm almost positive that this color will look beautiful on anyone.  Cost: $18.50

I think that's the end of the list for my must-haves.  I appreciate you reading this long ol' list!  If I think of any other products, I will be sure to add them here.  Please comment back and list your favorites too!  Thanks and goodnight!