Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Feel Like a Natural Woman: Makeup from Aubrey Organics

The more I check out Aubrey Organics, the more impressed I am. They're organic, earth-friendly and their packaging is environmentally conscious. And their stuff is bee-yoo-tee-ful. I mostly think of them as hair care and skincare, but I've been trying out their makeup and I am sold!

Silken Earth Translucent Base
Blurb: Silken Earth may look like mineral makeup, but it's better! Formulated with rich, nourishing powdered silk and natural colors. Made with sustainable and agricultural ingredients. It's made with silk powder and tapioca and rice starches – all natural, all sustainable. Feather-light, loose base powder blends with your own skin tone to even out color, soften imperfections and give your complexion a healthy glow.

Love this powder. Weightless, translucent and very beautiful. The coverage is light, and the finish is soft and flattering. I didn't look like I was wearing makeup, I just looked like I suddenly had nicer skin.

Silken Earth Powder Blush
Blurb: Silk-based blush and contour powder adds color and contrast where you want it to highlight your best features and brighten your complexion for a soft, natural look. Natural colors made with sustainable and agricultural ingredients.

These are also winners. Very natural looking colors. They are highly pigmented, though, so use sparingly. "Honey Bronze" gave me a nice burnished glow and "Warmed Rose" looked like a gorgeous flush on my cheeks. The big surprise was "Starlight Pink." I thought it would be too pale, but instead it was a feminine, glowy pink that would probably go with everything.

Natural Lips Sheer Tint
Blurb: We'll give you something to smile about. Eight sheer, natural shades from cool and sophisticated to light and playful. Sheer lip tint adds gloss and soft, translucent color to your lips and smoothes and conditions with organic shea butter and other rich emollients.

These are super kind to my lips and I love the way they look. They're very sheer and have a medium shine. And they made my lips look yummy and natural. I loved "Mocha Pearl" (a sheer pearly brown) and "Rose Nacre" (a pearly rose/pink), but my absolute favorite was "Ruby Frost" – a sheer berry that totally flatters my complexion and leaves a little color behind when the shine is gone.

Aubrey Organics makeup delivers a beautiful, flattering look with quality ingredients. If you're looking for a glitzy, club-girl look, this isn't it. But it is a lovely, natural, nourishing line that puts the focus on you.

I also tried out three Treat 'Em Right Lip Balms (Spearmint, Raspberry, Honey & Vanilla). These arrived after my random lip balm post last week; otherwise I probably would have included the Honey & Vanilla. It was my favorite, but all three smelled great and made my lips really soft. (They're made with Rosa Mosqueta® oil which softens and protects.)
Aubrey Organics products are available on their website and health food stores across the country (e.g. Whole Foods).

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Saturday Stuff

For some horrible, cruel reason, I woke up way WAY too early this morning. Maybe because that bird that keeps trying to peck out window insulation. Maybe it was that really big, really loud truck. Maybe I set my alarm last night, forgetting that today was Saturday.

I choose to blame the bird.
It’s going to be a while before I start feeling pretty, so today I will just post some of the fine information I’ve received during the week.

Dr. Brandt Skincare – In addition to free standard shipping, receive a beach tote bag with any purchase of $100 or more
Beach Essentials - For a healthy summer glow, reveal your radiance and protect yourself from the sun: Your Face: Use drbrandt® microdermabrasion to polish and revive dull skin. Follow with dr. brandt® UV SPF 30 high protection face to protect against damaging UVA/UVB rays, environmental aggressors and photo aging. Reapply as needed (at least once every 2-3 hours). Your Body: Use dr brandt® microdermabrasion body all over, placing special attention to elbows, knees and heels. Follow-up with your favorite UV SPF 30 body product. Reapply as needed.

Macys is having their Super Saturday Storewide Sale! 2 Days only!

Stila presents a Beautiful New Way to Bronze. Check out their Bronzing Tinted Moisturizer (SPF 15), Mineral Bronzing Powder (in Brushed Gold) and Convertible Color Duo (in Marigold).
And check out Stila's Best Face Forward – Nominate a friend or family member for a makeover with celebrity make-up artist, Sarah Lucero! Two winners will receive makeovers (and the nominators get prizes too)!
Shop THE SALE at Crabtree & Evelyn. Right now there are specials galore and an additional 25% off through Sunday (use code: SALE25).

Sign up for My Borghese Beauty. An online community for Borghese fans. Right now, you’ll receive a free special gift and 20% off of your next purchase of $100 or more when you sign up.
Happy Saturday!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Making "Scents" of Summer!

Wow! Did I really just write that? I guess I'm more goofy than usual this Friday. Could it be because I have something fun to do tonight? Perhaps something to do with find-your-eternal-soulmate-or-just-have-a-really-good-time-dot-com? Maybe. Maybe not.

Ahem, anyway…there is beauty business to accomplish.

I don't get to wear perfume very often because a lot of people around me are really sensitive. But every once in a while, I get to spritz a little something on and feel soooo extra dressed up!

Here are two fragrances I really love for summer (see how I totally tied this in?). One is fairly new in my life and the other I've loved for a long time.

Warm, Sweet and Spicy: Banana Republic Rosewood
Blurb: A sensual blend of rare florals and rich amber. This floral-oriental fragrance contains notes of bergamot, champagne, white tea leaves and white amber.

This is my new love. It's soft, slightly exotic, slightly floral, a little bit sweet and has a hint of spice. It's warm, feminine and romantic without being overpowering.

Fresh, Sassy and Exciting: Versace Bright Crystal
Blurb: Inspired by a mixture of Donatella Versace's favorite floral fragrances, Bright Crystal is a fresh, sensual blend of refreshing chilled yuzu and pomegranate mingled with soothing blossoms of peony, magnolia, and lotus flower, warmed with notes of musk and amber.

My Long Time Love. The Yuzu and Pomegranate make it crisp, invigorating and pretty. But the notes of magnolia, peony and musk give it depth and sensuality. It's exciting, fresh and clean, but still very womanly.

Both of these are feminine and sexy, but in different ways. Still trying to decide which one to wear tonight…nuff said. Definitely.

Awesome Opportunity: "Mouse Calls," by Dr. Zein Obagi

Passing this great info along, dear beauty readers...

Dr. Zein Obagi is offering a really cool new service. The new service (dubbed "Mouse Calls") allows you to consult with Dr. Obagi from the comfort of your own computer! No pricey office visit (or flight to Beverly Hills) – just submit your questions online and get answers directly from Dr. Obagi and his team.

What's awesome: The cost is only $75

What's really super awesome: It's FREE for a limited time!

How: log on to www.zoskinhealth.com/mousecall and fill out the simple questionnaire. That's it. Presto – you have access to a renowned dermatologist.

Here's the rest of the information I got:

These days, it’s hard to find a doctor who makes a good old-fashioned house call. With his new virtual office, celebrated dermatologist Dr. Zein Obagi updates the at-home visit for the modern era: Introducing the “MouseCall™,” a breakthrough way to tap into the legendary dermatologist’s expertise.

Now there’s no need to schedule a doctor’s appointment for every skincare question—expert advice is just a click away. Whether you have a question about finding the right regimen or treating a particular concern, Dr. Obagi or one of his colleagues will offer a professional opinion.

It’s simple: Just log on to
www.zoskinhealth.com/mousecall and provide some basic information about your background and your skin before asking your question. You’ll receive an answer shortly after submitting a question, putting skincare expertise at your fingertips.

“In just the past couple of weeks, we’ve had emails from Moscow to Mumbai”, said Dr. Obagi. “Sometimes the questions are simple—like what products are best for someone with sensitive skin, and sometimes they’re much more complicated—like what are the best facial exercises to improve skin tightness and reduce double chins."

For a limited time, the $75 service will be completely free—log on now to ask your question and get an answer, straight from the experts.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Mattify Me! Satisfy Me! DDF Acne Fighting Protocol (review)

Here is my first DDF review since attending their fab product launch last week. Their new Acne Fighting Protocol features two new items that just happen to fit ever so neatly into my series of oil/blemish control product reviews. They're formulated with a unique blend of botanicals (including glycerin, aloe leaf, marigold, ginger root and witch hazel). Specialized ingredients are then added to each evening and day treatment.

PM: Acne Control Treatment

Blurb: A night treatment that deeply penetrates pores to normalize skin by combating existing blemishes while also helping to prevent future acne. Fights and controls acne. Helps keep pores clear. Soothes and restores clarity.

Excellent, excellent, excellent! At the launch, we learned about how important it is to make sure to keep up your skin's "moisture barrier." (Now that I learned this term, I want to fling it around like I have a Ph.D.) The moisture barrier helps your skin stay hydrated so it can heal and renew itself. DDF's active ingredient is salicylic acid (to fight and prevent blemishes). It also contains the special botanical formulation which soothes skin and facilitates the…moisture barrier. So while you're sleeping, you've got clarification, hydration and all kinds of nice things happening. It also goes on very nicely without being goopy or sticky.

AM: Mattifying Oil Control UV Moisturizer (SPF 15)

Blurb: A daily protective moisturizer that controls exterior oils to instantly minimize shine on contact while also helping to protect against harmful UVA/UVB sun damage. Instantly controls shine. Mattifies imperfections. Helps protect from UVA/UVB sun damage.

Fresh from the Land of Really Good Ideas! In addition to the hydrating botanical combo, this moisturizer contains oil absorbing particles and SUNSCREEN. Nice multitasking, DDF! It went on smoothly, looked great under my makeup, hydrated, controlled oil until noon, and pretty much behaved fabulously.

DDF is available at places like Sephora, Ulta, Nordstrom, and on the DDF Website.

Non Beauty-Related Post. New Movie: The End of the Line

Just putting out the word. I had a chance to preview the movie, The End of The Line. It's the first major feature documentary film that deals with the world's oceans and the impact of overfishing. It was presented in the US and UK on World Oceans Day (June 8, 2009). The movie began its US theatrical release last Friday.

For those of us who really want to make informed choices that help sustain our planet, this is an excellent source of information. While I didn't agree with every thing the movie had to say, I am thrilled that there is a film in wide release that promotes stewardship of our ocean and marine life. I'm also glad that it offers some good solutions and encourages political resolve and activism.

The End of The Line opens next Friday (July 3) here in Philly. Check here for a list of screenings throughout the country.

For a little preview, here's a trailer for the movie:

You can also visit these ocean preservation organizations for more information:

World Wildlife Fund: www.worldwildlife.org
Oceana: www.oceana.org
Greenpeace: www.greenpeace.org
Blue Ocean Institute: www.blueocean.org
Pew Institute for Ocean Conservation Science: www.oceanconservationscience.org/
Environmental Defense Fund: www.edf.org/
NRDC: www.nrdc.org/
Marine Conservation Society: www.mcsuk.org/
Marine Stewardship Council: www.msc.org
Monterey Bay Aquarium: www.mbayaq.org

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Wednesday Random Lip Balm Post

I have no idea why, but I just felt a random need to discuss some of my favorite lip balms of the moment. Guess I’m just kind of hip to the lip (balm) vibe today.

Simply Organic Lip Balm

Formulated with certified organic ingredients. Makes my lips super soft almost immediately. I love it because it softens without being greasy or waxy. Has a slight orange fragrance. (And right now it’s free with any online purchase at the Simply Organic website.)

Philosophy Kiss Me High Emolient Lip Balm
It’s very dense, so it really hangs on. Lightly pigmented, SPF 20, glossy finish and peppermint!

Yu-Be (pronounced "you-bee") Moisturizing Skin Cream
I use a small tube of the cream instead of their lip balm. It’s formulated with glycerin, camphor, Vitamin E and Vitamin B2. It disappears completely into the lips, so I can apply my lip color right on top of it.

C.O. Bigelow - My Favorite Lip Balm
Shea butter and sweet almond make my lips soft and shiny. It lasts and has a lovely vanilla fragrance. I usually keep one of these in the car at all times.

Update from attentive reader, JenniferJ: They're on sale at Bath & Body Works right now for $5. Thanks, Jennifer!

Lypsyl Lypmoisturizer (original formula)
Has shea butter, beeswax and coconut oil. It also a little minty. What I really love is the packaging. There’s a little slider (shaped like a tiny bee) that moves the balm up and down. Perfect for your bag.

Burt's Bees Beeswax Lip Balm
First of all, THE TIN IS SO CUTE! But even if the tin wasn’t teeny and adorable, you would still have an awesome all natural lip balm. Beeswax, coconut oil, sweet almond oil and peppermint. And the TIN…!

Happy Wednesday!

Cool Stuff From Cargo Cosmetics!

I've think I've probably had something from Cargo Cosmetics in my bag every day for years. Here's some new info I got regarding some fabulous launches! I may be making my way to Sephora (yet again) to try these out. Lips, lashes, cheeks and a rad kit! Read on, girls:

False lashes are a thing of the past! CARGO introduces a safe and effective lash growing formula that performs. Thirty days is all it takes to enhance the appearance of longer, thicker lashes. CARGO innovates yet again with its revolutionary LashActivator™. This nourishing boost for your lashes has been proven to visibly increase the appearance of natural lash length and fullness, while promoting lash vitality and reducing lash loss. In clinical trials, CARGO LashActivatorTM was shown to have a 169% improvement over the natural rate at which lashes grow. Use LashActivator™ alone or under your favorite mascara. Use daily for 30 days for longer, thicker lashes. Finally a safe and effective way to achieve those gorgeous lashes you’ve always dreamed of!

Better-than-waterproof™ Mascara
Won’t smudge, run or melt. This mascara acts like a waterproof mascara, but comes off easily with warm water and gentle pressure. Better-than-waterproof™ Mascara’s technologically advanced formula creates small “tubes” that surround and coat each lash. And since this mascara rinses off with warm water and gentle pressure there’s no need for make-up remover. Vitamins F, B, C and E condition the lashes and help protect from sun damage, while protein-rich amino acids repair and nourish.

Water Resistant Bronzer (new for Summer!)
Whether you’re caught in the rain, vacationing in the tropics or simply enjoying a day at the shore, CARGO’s new Water Resistant Bronzer helps maintain your gorgeous bronze glow. This long-wearing formula, which comes in a universally flattering medium bronze shade, contains a unique silicone-coated talc that provides better adhesion to the skin and withstands water. Micronized light diffusers work to ensure a gorgeously natural, non-shiny glow.

New Timestrip® technology
Did you know that lip gloss, like food, has an expiration date? Consequently, the product should be replaced nine months after opening. Beauty innovator CARGO Cosmetics introduces glosses in packaging that incorporates cutting-edge Timestrip® technology. Timestrip® is a tiny strip embedded in the cap of the gloss. It keeps track of how long your lip gloss has been open. Simply insert the strip into the cap of the gloss to activate. The Timestrip® window will start turning red, indicating the passage of time. When the nine months are over and the entire window is red, you know it is time to throw out your gloss.

7 in 7™ Kits (available in Light Medium, Deep Medium and Warm Medium)
7 Products that get you gorgeous and ready to go in 7 minutes! Your morning just got a whole lot easier. CARGO’s new 7 in 7™ kit gives you the 7 tried-and-true must-haves to get you out the door in no time flat! This limited edition kit includes seven of CARGO’s workhorse products, best-sellers, and double-duty time-savers. The very same products women everywhere have come to love and Hollywood make-up artists can’t live without.

OneBase™: A double-duty wonder -- concealer and foundation in one! Use it to spot conceal and blend it out like a foundation to match your natural skin tone.

Essential Palette: The perfect shades for a classic, sculpted, nude eye. This must-have palette contains four graduated neutral shades, each debossed with its function for ease of application.

Eye liner: CARGO Eye Liner promises a smooth, even application every time, without skipping.

(NEW!) LashActivator™: A proven formula that visibly boosts the appearance of thicker, longer looking lashes in only 30 days!

BeachBlush™: The perfect marriage of blush and bronzer. This double-duty best-seller is a combination of four complementary shades for the perfect blush and bronzer, all in one.

Reverse Lip Liner: The ONLY lip liner for gloss! Line your lips from the outside in with this flesh-toned liner. The result: added definition, reduced feathering, and a fuller-looking lip.

(NEW!) Classic Gloss with Timestrip® Technology: CARGO’s award-winning, non-sticky lip gloss packaged in a convenient wand with Timestrip® technology to monitor the freshness of your gloss.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Gratify Me! Carol’s Daughter Wash Away the Oil (review)

I'm gratified because I get to write more about one of my favorite companies: Carol's Daughter. I reviewed the award-winning Hair Milk a while ago, but Carol's Daughter is so much more than haircare! The amazing recipes in this line encompass a huge range of unique bath & body, fragrance, skincare products and even lip gloss. Today, I'm sticking to the subject of help for oiliness and breakouts, so I'm going to review their Wash Away The Oil products. (But I'll be writing about their other gorgeous things soon.)

These aren't mattifyers - Wash Away the Oil is another approach to controlling oiliness. The cleanser uses essential oils, and the serum is also formulated with essential oils and jojoba. It might seem counter-intuitive to use oils to "wash away the oil," but the right types in the right combinations can actually inhibit the production of sebum (which is what causes all the trouble). And your skin stays healthy, hydrated and pretty.

Wash Away The Oil Gentle Face Wash

Blurb: Keep oily skin at bay with this gentle daily cleanser, which marries ingredients such as Lemongrass and Meadowsweet essential oils and Acai Berry extract to boost skin's moisture. Dermatologist Tested. Paraben-free. No petroleum, mineral oil or artificial color. Benefits: Gently dissolves build up and oil while providing clean-feeling moisture, balances skin’s oil production with Lemongrass and Geranium for shine-free skin, features Acai Berry extract, known for its antioxidant and anti-aging benefits.

This is a lovely foaming cleanser. I wet my face, applied the foam, thoroughly massaged and rinsed. It didn't feel like a whole lot was going on; but when I looked in the mirror, every last speck of everything was gone. It was like my pores had been vacuumed! Nothing harsh, no tingling; but there was not one single trace of makeup, oiliness or shine.

Wash Away the Oil Essential Serum

Blurb: Nourish your skin with a brilliant essential oil blend that soothes, protects and feeds the skin while aiding in the decrease of production of oils by the skin's sebaceous glands.
Lemongrass regulates the oil production of sebaceous glands. Geranium offers relief from congested pores by helping skin to regenerate. Jojoba oil base is easily absorbed by the skin, leaving a clean, velvety feel. Performs as the perfect carrier for serum's key ingredients.

When your face gets that clean and spiffy, it's very important that you put something back to make sure it stays hydrated. This is an excellent serum for doing just that. I love jojoba oil. It doesn't clog pores the way sebum does and it prevents overdrying – which keeps skin from over producing. This serum has the benefits of jojoba, plus the lemongrass, geranium, avocado and sweet almond. It has a pretty strong fragrance (maybe from the geranium), but it fades. I smoothed it on to my face and neck (use very sparingly) and it disappeared into my skin immediately, leaving it very soft.

The system also includes a Gentle Face Toner (which I didn't get a chance to try). All three are free of parabens, sulfates, synthetic fragrances, synthetic dyes, phthalates, GMOs and triclosan. There's also a Wash Away the Oil Set.

And for you beauty girls in the South, Carol’s Daughter will be traveling to the French Quarter in July! Look here.

Monday, June 22, 2009

It’s Monday and I’m Lovin the LORAC!

LORAC! You are killing me with your tempting VIP discounts today! If you’ve never tried LORAC eyeshadows, just take my word for it that they rule.

Let’s get the blurb out of the way.

Blurb: LORAC eye products create the looks you see walking down the Red Carpet from that classic sexy, smoky eye to that clean, fresh, natural look. LORAC’s highly-pigmented, versatile Eye Shadows can both be used either wet or dry. LORAC Eye Shadows are an industry standout and available in a versatile range of colors. The unique, long-lasting, formula is gentle, non-irritating, and infused with soothing botanicals such as Calendula and Cucumber.

Two of my everyday, can’t-live-without eye shadows from LORAC are:

Lilac (lilac with shimmer) , and

Spice (café au lait with shimmer)

These are my main “go to” colors, but there are about 40 shades from "White” (shimmery white) to aquas, corals, plums, greens, purples, etc. This eye shadow glides on, looks beautiful and stays put all day. It’s also infused with botanicals to keep your eyelids happy. And right now 17 of their shades are in the VIP discount eyeshadow section. That means instead of the regular price ($17.00), you can snap them up for 4.99 each! Wow! They also have a whole slew of nifty palettes! Visit the whole VIP section and check out the amazingness! All you have to do is sign up to become a LORAC VIP.

Right now I’m ogling the Pink Python Palette ($12.99!)
and the Croc Mocktail Collection ($12.50!)
Did you ever?!? Could you just?!?

Now take a look at their What's New Section. Their ‘09 Summer Collections includes TANTalizer Baked Bronzer, Baked Matte Satin Eyeshadows and Baked Matte Satin Blushes. Ooooh.

Happy Monday, all!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Mattify Me! Clarify Me!: Dermalogica (review)

Oooh, look at the time! Due to extreme laziness, I am running way behind schedule (so my post is extra late).

Today I’m continuing with my survey of products for de-shining oily and/or problem skin (aka: my skin). Besides too much extra shine in the summer, some of us (aka: me) also get a little more breakout prone. Enter Dermalogica. Dermalogica skincare has products for just about every skincare need you can think of. The three I’m featuring today are perfect for keeping your complexion fresh and clear. They contain…Salycilic Acid.

(Warning! Science talk ahead!)

I usually talk about products with Benzoyl Peroxide, but I fully realize that it’s not for everyone. Lots of people can’t tolerate BP (or it just doesn’t work for them). The other widely effective ingredient for battling breakouts is Salicylic Acid. Salicylic acid works mainly as an exfoliant. It helps slough away dead skin cells and unclog pores. Salicylic acid is especially helpful because of its ability to penetrate the follicle. It reduces the number of pore blockages (and breakouts).

Okay, wake up, I’m done. Here are the three products.

Clearing Skin Wash

Blurb: A naturally foaming cleanser that is the perfect start to around-the-clock control of breakouts, comedones and excess surface oils. Designed to treat adult acne and the needs of adult skin. A synergistic anti-acne combination of licorice, milk thistle, lemon, arnica and bergamot botanicals helps soothe while preventing future breakouts. Salicylic acid stimulates natural exfoliation, helping to clear impacted follicles and minimize acne formation. Tea tree, eucalyptus, golden seal and matricaria help eliminate acne-causing bacteria.

I am completely impressed with this cleanser! It’s extremely gentle and effective. It had great lather (use a tiny amount) and it cleaned my skin thoroughly. And even though it removed every bit of grime and makeup; it left my skin smooth, soothed and refreshed. All that plus great acne-fighting ingredients!

Overnight Clearing Gel

Blurb: An overnight treatment that helps clear skin, calm inflammation and prevent future breakouts by reducing excess sebum, removing impaction plugs and eliminating bacteria. Tea tree helps inhibit bacteria while helping to heal and soothe skin. Green tea helps soothe irritation brought on by breakouts. Unique blend of botanicals inhibits overactive sebaceous activity and purifies to promote skin clarity.

This is a great overnight treatment. What I love is that it didn’t over dry my skin. It’s soothing, fights breakouts and even fights the after-breakout pigmentation!

Oil Control Lotion

Blurb: A hydrating, oil-free, featherlight lotion containing additional microsponges to help absorb even more oil on skin’s surface and maintain an all-day matte finish. Active sebum regulating complex helps control oil production while enantia chlorantha bark extract helps reduce oily shine. Zinc gluconate and caffeine help regulate sebum production to minimize excess surface oils. Salicylic acid helps clear impacted follicles and minimize acne formation. Hyssopus helps prevent future breakouts.

Another good one! This does double duty – it keeps you shine free and goes to work all day to keep your skin clear. I tried it a few different ways and I liked it best when I applied it right before my sunscreen. The texture was very light, it absorbed quickly into my skin and felt absolutely weightless. And it worked - the oil control was excellent and lasted most of the day. A+!

All three products are part of the mediBac Clearing system and are free of artificial fragrance and color. Other items in the mediBac system include some very convenient-looking Skin Purifying Wipes and a Special Clearing Booster. You can find these on their website, Ulta (stores only), and online stores like Dermstore and SkinCareRx..

Friday, June 19, 2009

i feel silly (oh so silly.)

So you all know that this Sunday is Father's Day? Of course you know! Everybody knows! Well, everyone except me, it seems.

For some reason I thought that Father's Day was last Sunday. So last Sunday I called my dad. He seemed a little surprised, but I didn't think anything of it. I also called my stepdad and left an answering machine message (no one was home and I assumed everyone was out celebrating). When I called my sister later and told her I'd wished our dad Happy Father's Day already, she said, "Really? I thought it was next week!" I assured her that she was wrong.


I guess my dad and stepdad were both too polite and kind to tell me that I had the wrong week. But, now that I know, I'm trying to figure out if I should call everyone back this Sunday for a do-over.

See? Silly. Oh well, at least I was a week early and not a week late!

So now that I seem to have everything straightened out in my head (and on my calendar), here's something cool from AVEDA. You can send your Dad a free e-card for father's day and enter to win Aveda gifts sets. Read below!

With just a few days left until Father’s Day, you might be wondering what to buy. Here at Aveda we know that being a father can be a thankless job. It shouldn’t be. Let him know what he means to you. Say “thanks, man” to your favorite father today. Choose your message, personalize your gratitude with a free Father’s Day e-card, and enter to win gift sets from Aveda for you and your favorite father too. Along with the e-card, he’ll receive a free Aveda Men sample offer and a chance to enter and win the Aveda gift set giveaway for you both. Visit www.avedathanksman.com today.

Click here to get started

This might even be a pretty good way for me to re-wish everyone Happy Father's Day! J

More Friday Fun! The Big Hair Affair from LUSH

News from LUSH:

It’s time to toss your plans and titillate your senses by having a steamy affair – with your hair. LUSH Cosmetics is introducing The Big Hair Affair, a limited edition, customizable kit that will romance your hair with the freshest ingredients and the finest essential oils, so you can sit back, relax and fall in love with your hair again. Begin an affair with your hair tonight and romance those dull locks back to life – and don’t worry, we won’t tell your stylist.

The Big Hair Affair contains seven indulgent hair products for just $15. You will get a taste of three shampoos, two conditioners, one hair treatment and one styling gel – all of your choice and customized to suit your hair needs. Whether you’re looking to tame your tresses, define curls, or max out volume, you’re just 5 steps away from sultry and seductive hair with The Big Hair Affair.

Friday Fun: LA Lakers Love Stila!

Even though I am pitifully ignorant of sports, I was born in Los Angeles and grew up in LA County – so if I don't post this, I probably won't be allowed to return home for Thanksgiving.

It turns out that Stila sponsored the beauty wardrobe for the Los Angeles Laker Girls (FYI: basketball). Kudos to Stila! I'm pretty impressed that the Laker Girls can jump around in a hot stadium for hours and still look great!

And to congratulate the 2009 NBA Champions, Stila has put together a Stila Loves The Lakers Set. The set includes: Illuminating Tinted Moisturizer, Convertible Color, Smudge Pot in Golden Noir and Lash Visor in Brown.
(Now see, if sports had more fun beauty products and a little less chasing balls around, I might become a fan.)

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Mattify Me! More Awesomeness from AWAKE (review)

Summer is just a few days away! And along with all the longer days and extra fun, it's also a time when my complexion begins to go from glowy to downright shiny. Of course I'm sure you have absolutely no idea what I'm talking about. But just in case you do, over the next few weeks, I'll be checking out some products that help control oil (and/or breakouts).

I'm starting with one of my all time favorite, fabulous brands: Awake Cosmetics. In the past I've discussed some of their makeup, but their skincare products are equally fabulous.

Company Blurb: Stress Free Skin. AWAKE utilizes state-of-the art Japanese technology to incorporate natural botanicals into formulations that are gentle enough for sensitive skin. Each product is designed to take a targeted approach that addresses specific skin concerns. Mineral oil-free, hypo-allergenic and fragrance-free (with the exception of the Polyphection Skincare Series and Paradise Call).

I've been trying out two new items and I LOVE them!

Deep Purity Clay Wash

Blurb: A foaming exfoliating wash formulated with natural sea clay to effectively absorb excess oils, help minimize the appearance of pores and prevent acne formation. The acne-fighting formula contains exfoliating plant fibers to rid skin of dulling impuities.

Wowee! I am trying really hard to think of another word besides "fabulous," but so far I can't. Because this wash is, well…fabulous. I wet my face, lathered it up in my hands and gently washed my face (it's very foamy). After I rinsed, my face was smooth and clean, clean, clean (without feeling tight or dry)! This wash pretty much chased away every bit of oil and told it never to come back. Like I said, fabulous.

Day Matteness

Blurb: A light-textured primer that enhances makeup application by controlling sebum and eliminating shine throughout the day. Used as a foundation primer, it instantly gives skin an even, silky tone and provides a refined finish even on the most shine-prone areas. Thyme and Japanese Coptis Extract keep oil in check, while Peppermint Extract minimizes pore size.

I totally love this. Because it totally works. It works as a primer (my pores looked smaller, my skin was smoother and my makeup looked better) and it was GREAT at controlling shine. My t-zone stayed shine free for hours. And here's some extra goodness: when my skin did get a little shiny in the late afternoon, I dabbed some on the shiny areas and they mattified instantly!

I'll probably check out some of their other things later. AWAKE also has a Sebum regulating lotion and the cutest little pack of blotting papers ever. Visit their website and click the Special Offers button while you're there.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Exciting New Breakthroughs from DDF!

One of the best things about being a blogger is learning about all the amazing new breakthroughs in beauty and skincare. Last night DDF Skincare unveiled their newest products at a fabulous launch event. We gathered at At Vermillion in New York for cocktails and hors d’oevres while Principle Scientist, Laura Goodman, and DDF Director of Training and Education, Georgia Sturges, shared some amazing insight into the latest ingredients and technology. I'm a long time fan and user of DDF and now I have SIX more reasons to cheer!

Acne Fighting Protocol

Blurb: DDF’s new acne protocol begins with a core combination of ingredients which comprise the DDF Clarifying Neutralizing Complex. The core contains a soothing blend of botanicals and skin conditioners including Glycerin, Aloe Leaf Juice, Marigold Flower Extract, Ginger Root Extract and Witch Hazel Extract. Additionally, specialized ingredients are added to each product for specific AM and PM care.

AM: Mattifying Oil Control UV Moisturizer (SPF 15) - The exclusive Daytime Clarifying Neutralizing Complex contains the botanical humectant core ingredients as well as micronized oil-controlling particles which provide an instantaneous mattifying effect. These extraordinary mattifying components instantly minimize shine. In addition, this daily moisturizer contains broad spectrum UVA/UVB sunscreen technology to help protect skin from the sun’s harmful rays, including those rays that penetrate the deepest.

PM: Acne Control Treatment - Throughout the night, it works to combat existing blemishes and fight future breakouts. The exclusive Nighttime Clarifying Neutralizing Complex contains the botanical humectant core blend, Decylene glycol, a skin conditioner, and salicylic acid. This proven, highly effective acne fighting medication penetrates pores overnight and helps to exfoliate the outer layer of the affected area, eliminating excess fluid build-up by working to keep pores unclogged.

These are very near and dear to my heart (and complexion). I previously wrote about how much I love their Benzoyl Peroxide Gel and I am so thrilled that they’ve added these two new items. The Mattifying Oil Control Moisturizer keeps skin hydrated, minimizes shine and helps protect from UVA/UVB sun damage. The Acne Control Treatment conditions skin at night while it exfoliates and fights blemishes. They also work really well with the BP Gel.

Advanced Protocol (Anti-Aging Restorative)

Blurb: DDF Advanced Protocol is the only skin care in its class with the super antioxidant benefits of Turmeric. An integral part of Ayurvedic treatment, Turmeric has been used in traditional Indian medicine for thousands of years. Most notably, it is a known powerhouse antioxidant which can quench damaging free radicals at the skin’s surface. Turmeric contains powerful phytonutrients, which have been shown to protect the body from the harmful effects of many damaging aging processes including oxidation and inflammation. DDF’s four new Anti-Aging Restorative products are designed to work together for maximum results, combining potent antioxidants, peptides, barrier-enhancing vitamins, rich humectants and sunscreens.

Advanced Micro-Exfoliation Cleanser - Rice Bran Wax gently exfoliates while cleansing impurities. Nourishing hydrators work up to three hours after cleansing to reveal beautifully smooth skin. In clinical testing, 89 percent of women said it left skin feeling moisturized and hydrated.

Advanced Eye Firming ConcentrateMassage it in to reduce the look of puffiness and wrinkles while instantly firming for a lifted appearance that helps restore a more youthful eye contour.

Advanced Firming CreamNeutralizes 82 percent of surface free radicals, hydrates, and fortifies skin’s moisture barrier to instantly firm and tighten skin.

Advanced Moisture Defense UV Cream (SPF 15)Instantly firms and tightens skin with hydration while protecting skin’s moisture barrier with antioxidants and guarding against the harmful rays of the sun with broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection.

Wow! This is really exciting stuff! We learned that the main ingredient in this new protocol, Turmeric, has extremely powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. In addition, a number of dermatological studies show that the skin has a great ability to absorb Turmeric, allowing it to reach cells beneath the surface. DDF has incorporated Turmeric into these four products for a brand new, exclusive formula!

DDF is available at places like Sephora, Ulta, Nordstrom, and on the DDF Website. The website also has information about events, and you can even submit a review and receive a discount off of your next purchase.

I am planning to try out every single one of these items (and I’ll be sure and let you know how it goes.)