Entries Tagged as 'BPGP'
Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette ($58)
The days are shorter, the air is drier and my complexion is really taking a hit. So what’s a girl to do if she wants to breathe some life back into her skin?
Hourglass came onto the scene and made a big splash with their color-correcting, illuminating Ambient Lighting Powders. They give skin a soft, candlelit glow that conceals imperfection and makes even tired skin (like my, oh-aren’t-I-lucky-I-slept-four-hours-last-night face) look vibrant and alive.
In this palette, you receive three nearly-full-size powders: Incandescent Light (a complexion brightener), Dim Light (my favorite–blurs unevenness, tiredness into a soft finish) and Radiant Light (a warm powder to give you just a kiss of natural-looking bronzy glow).
I use the Dim Light powder every day under my eyes and as a highlighter. I also use the Radiant Light as a lighter alternative to contouring powder. And I use Incandescent Light on those days, like yesterday, when sleep is elusive and my skin has that lovely Crypt Keeper quality to it. That’s hot. (I also own a separate Mood Light, which is a pink glow that I apply when I need to reboot my makeup before going out at night.)
Hourglass recommends that you use this large, fluffy brush designed to ensure that the “makeup performs at its full potential.” Frankly, that’s a bit more pretension that I like from my makeup manufacturer. I use this $5 Avon Kabuki brush that I bought to apply bronzer.
If you need a drugstore highlighter that compares, I really don’t know of any powder that smooths imperfections the way this one does. I’m not exaggerating when I say that my experience is like having Photoshop for real life. However, there are a couple of similar products that I have used in the past and can recommend.
The first is Physician’s Formula Mineral Wear Corrector (just blends and smooths everything while correcting for redness and sallowness). The second is actually from Wet n’ Wild, which is really hit or miss, but their Color Icon Bronzer in the shade Reserve Your Cabana is a great alternative for Radiant Light. I bought it to use on other people when I do makeup for friends, and when you put the two products side by side, they’re pretty similar.
I have tried every under-eye concealer ever created. I have used thick ones and creamy ones. Pink ones and yellow ones. But over the last few weeks, long hours and insomnia have me reaching for the only concealer that hides them away: Instant Age Rewind Eraser Concealer and Treatment ($9).
Age Rewind is the perfect consistency to blend naturally without sacrificing coverage, no brush required. It’s not too heavy, but you can build it if necessary. You can also reach into the corner of your eye and spread the concealer down your cheek to prevent “raccoon eyes.”
I’ve used this concealer on-and-off for a few years, but until I started applying it under my foundation, I never got the full effect. To apply it flawlessly, I put on my primer first. Then, the under-eye concealer, patting around the edges with my finger tip to blend. After that, I apply my foundation and face concealer. Lastly, I tap on translucent powder to set the makeup using a highlighter brush for good coverage under the eyes.
Need a major amount of concealment (like I did on a recent business trip)? Apply a thin layer of the brightener Ooh La Lift after primer but before concealer.
The best thing about the Age Rewind Concealer? It not only covers your circles, the spongy applicator fills and smooths fine lines. And the formula treats puffiness and darkness with goji berry, haloxyl and collagen. So if you’re looking for a new under-eye concealer, Age Rewind is definitely worth a shot.
A few weeks ago, I was scrolling through my Instagram when I saw a photo from E at District of Chic touting the benefits of a “raw honey mask.” I’d never heard of such a thing, but I was immediately curious.
Since the Egyptians, and probably before, honey’s anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties have been used to treat skin problems. Some health and beauty blogs believe that raw honey can be used to treat everything from acne to rosacea to eczema by gently cleansing and treating the skin while maintaining a health pH balance.
The most prevalent use raw honey masks is to treat acne. You can apply raw honey as a spot treatment if you feel a blemish development. You can also mix it with cinnamon to create a potent bacteria-killing mask. I was amazed how bright my skin looked after I applied a honey mask. My skin was much less red, and a few small blemishes around my nose shrunk considerably after the mask.
Don’t have acne? (Lucky you.) You can also use raw honey to treat dry skin, dark marks or to exfoliate and decongest sensitive skin. I also found this post that discusses cleansing your face with raw honey. Which, given the dry conditions, might be kinder to skin than soap.
So where to buy raw honey, I picked up a jar at Trader Joe’s, but you can order it from Amazon as well. Most varieties clearly mark that they are raw honey, but you can see the difference because raw honey is cloudy and waxy, not clear and viscous like filtered honey.
I’m always glad to find a natural alternative to a beauty product that costs me a lot of money. I’ve alternated my Origins charcoal mask with a raw honey mask, and after four weeks, my skin has never looked better. Of course, the honey’s not entirely responsible, but I think it’s helping.
When I first saw the ads for “anti-aging” shampoo, all I could think was: Why does my hair need protection from aging? After all, doesn’t hair grow, get cut and grow back. Even long-term damage is temporary if you have a pair of scissors. Amirite?
But a friend is obsessed with Alterna shampoo, like I’m obsessed with the Clarisonic, so I decided to give it a try. Luckily, I could bypass spending $64 for shampoo and conditioner (does it come with elves to wash it for me?) by purchasing Alterna’s Caviar Anti-Aging To-Go Kit ($30).
After using the shampoo and conditioner, I noticed that my hair seemed shinier and perhaps a bit fuller. It also felt softer. But unless this product can guarantee Disney Princess-level hair (and the cartoon, hair-braiding birds to go with them), there is simply no way on Earth that I would spend that amount of money on a product that, literally, gets washed down the drain.
However, there was an upside to my Alterna experience.
Also contained in the kit is Alterna’s Overnight Hair Rescue Treatment ($38). And this product, ladies, is the goods. So skip the shampoo, bypass the overly sticky hairspray, and go straight for the Rescue Treatment.
If your hair is damaged by color, chemicals or heat, this product can save it. My hair was looking rather lackluster after summer highlights, chlorine from the pool and all of that August sunshine, but two applications of this treatment and my hair is smoother, shinier and softer than it was before the abuse began. And now that my hair is back to normal, I still smooth a little on my ends to protect them from the daily brutality of hot rollers.
Also, most overnight treatments recommend that you wear a shower cap or lay a towel on the pillow to protect your sheets. I can never sleep that way. So I love that the Alterna treatment absorbs within minutes and doesn’t leave a damaging residue on my high-thread-count pillowcases or, more importantly, my acne-prone skin.
Bottom line, whether your hair is in need of a serious intervention or your ends just need a little tender, loving care, this is a great product. I still don’t buy into the anti-aging shampoo nonsense (especially at $64 a throw), but this treatment serum is fan-tas-tic. And since a little bit goes a long way, a full bottle should last for a long, long time.
It’s a paradox: Women who have curly hair want straight hair; women who have straight hair want curly hair.
My hair doesn’t hold a curl very well, but sometimes, if the humidity is low and the wind isn’t kicking up, I can indulge in a wavy style. The trouble is, it takes so much time to curl my hair the way I like it, and there is always one section that requires three or four passes before it will curl. And multiple passes mean heat damage.
I spotted the Conair Curl Secret ($99) in a magazine. The company promises that the machine will give you perfect curls with minimal effort thanks to its automatic curling system. The notion that a gadget could curly my hair without twisting and turning my locks into a burned-up mess was intriguing, so I ordered one to try. But part of me wondered if this device was The Air Curler’s high-tech cousin.
To use the Curl Secret, you place a one-inch section of hair into the chamber. The device then twists it around the heating element and begins to curl the hair. When the device beeps multiple times, you release your grip on the handle and out comes a perfectly curled piece of hair. At least in theory. (You can watch a video demo, here.)
In reality, it takes quite a bit of practice to use the Curl Secret. If you put in too much hair, the device admonishes you with an angry beep. And if you don’t pay attention to how you’re holding the device and how much hair you’re curling at a time, you could wind up getting your hair stuck in the device. A situation that would likely result in a burned off chunk of hair. Awesome.
Once I got the hang of using Curl Secret, it took me about 15 minutes to curl all of my below-the-shoulder hair. The device has a size selector that allows you to choose tight, medium or loose waves, but since you can only use one-inch sections, the look isn’t as loose and modern as I would like.
That being said, Curl Secret does curl your hair as promised with minimal heat damage and less time than it would take twisting a curling iron manually. As for staying power, the curls softened during the day, but my hair was still wavy by the evening.
Bottom line, if you like the look of curly hair but you want to make the process easier on yourself, try Curl Secret. The device does what it promises, creating a bevy of perfectly formed curls with minimal effort and heat damage. However, the curls are of the tighter spiral variety and the size limitations make it difficult to create larger waves. But given the time it saved me, the fact that every piece of hair curled on the first try (after some practice) and the absence of any burnt ends, I was happy with my purchase.
My advice? If you want to try Curl Secret, buy it from a retailer who will let you return it if you’re dissatisfied, like Ulta.