The county fairs have ended along with television advertisements for water parks and Summer vacation spots, but as the colors change and the leaves fall, so does the opportunity to reconsider what kind of beauty tools and products you currently use, and what products and tools you might want to add to enhance your beauty routine. Since the Advice Sisters are always on the lookout for beauty helpers to make life easier, more efficient, more beautiful and more satisfying, here is a melange (don’t you just love that word!) of products that you might like to consider. Which will be your must-haves? Which will you want? We think you’ll want them all:
Open Your Eyes- yes, literally. Eyes tend to droop as you age. Our friends at Kiels have come up with a nifty new product called Kiel’s Super Multi-Corrective Eye-Opening Serum ($48.000) that helps to address the entire orbital area of the eye, opening, lifting and helping to deal with other signs of aging around the eyes. They are using a bunch of powerful ingredients that include: Sodium Hyaluronate (a moisturizer that forms a transparent film on the skin which has a soothing and lubricating action), Botanical Extracts (help to lift skin and improve firmness around the eye area), and Skin Illuminating Minerals (light reflecting minerals help to improve skin luminosity and reduce the look of under-eye darkness and the look of wrinkles).
Kiehl’s calls this the “super-smart 5 in 1 solution for the eye.” Their claims are that this one little serum in a nice pump bottle will do it all: lift, firm, smooth, hydrate, and restore youthful shape of the eye. According to their research, 95% of women who used this (for 4 weeks) showed a significant improvement in eye opening. In other words, the lifting qualities were impressive. And the product is paraben-free, mineral-oil-free, fragrance-free, colorant-free, and therefor suitable for sensitive eyes.
As someone who doesn’t believe in miracles, I can say that there is a lot of “good stuff” in this product that should produce some good results in a hard to treat area, but of course, you have to use it properly and regularly, and everyone’s skin, and everyone’s results, will be different.
On a personal note, I’m one of those women with sensitive eyes and I dislike a lot of eye creams as they seem to be heavy. This one has a very light scent, feels refreshing on your skin, sinks in quickly leaving a silky protective film, and you can actually feel it working. For all of this, it’s definitely worth your consideration!
Carmex, (yes, that beloved brand of lip balm) has come up with a new little miracle in a tube for cold sores – Carmex Cold Sore Treatment ($14.99). It can’t cure the cold sore, but it can relieve the unpleasant symptoms. And it can do something else you’ll love: it can help reduce that neon sign look of a cold sore, thanks to light diffusing particles.
I am fortunate that I have never suffered from cold sores, but I am told that they pretty awful. This new product relieves the pain and itch immediately, thanks to Benzocaine While something that Carmex calls their “TriPLEX™ Formula” smoothes and fills in around the cold sore to diffuse the light and make the cold sore look less noticeable. I attended a launch event and saw the before and after results for this product, and they were extremely impressive. So if you have a cold sore now, you don’t have to suffer.
Here’s how to use it: STEP 1 Wash your hands to get rid of germs and bacteria; STEP 2 Squeeze a small amount of Carmex® Cold Sore Treatment onto your finger—just enough to cover the affected area; STEP 3 Dab it on your cold sore, not your entire lip, and blend it in; STEP 4 Wash your hands again to avoid spreading the virus, because cold sores are contagious.
There’s no need to cover your entire lip area to relieve pain and help conceal your cold sore. Just apply to the affected area up to 3 or 4 times a day. You can use it during all stages of your cold sore, from the first tingle until it heals. It works on contact, so you see and feel results fast. We now have another reason to love Carmex!
Looking for long lasting relief from dry, chapped lips? With Carmex, there are so many options! For those who just want deliciously hydrated lips, there are other Carmex Delights, such as a trio of Carmex Ultra Smooth Lip Balms ($1.49) in yummy flavors like Pomegranate, vanilla and Lime twist with SPF 15 and 9 moisturizers plus a very smooth and silky formula that makes them an affordable little luxury. There are also three everyday Protecting Lip balms SPF 15 (cherry, strawberry and original). There are lip balms with flavor that are hydrating and non waxy, in tube forms, too. Or go for the original Carmex in the little jar that has been around, saving lips for more than 75 years, thanks to camphor and menthol and petrolatum -love the slight tingle (note: you can also get the original formula SPF 15 in a stick ).
Get all of these lip loving miracles from Carmex (most are under $1.50 or under) at drug, and mass market retailers and for more information visit the Carmex Web Site.
Beauty tools are like hair brushes, we often just take them for granted. We use them, abuse them, and then when they are so dirty or corroded we can’t ignore that fact any more, we finally buy another one. Urban Beauty United, aka. UBU, makes a lot of inexpensive beauty helpers (most are $3.00-$17.00) that are not just attractive and fun to use, but high performance. Here are some suggestions for “must-haves.”
Every woman who wears liquid foundation needs the UBU blender baby ($7.99) and the Wonder Wheel Foundation Sponge Circle ($4,99). The former is a curvy, latex-free (so good for sensitive skin) sponge that lets you smooth liquid foundation on your face in smooth, streak-free strokes, while the tip lets you get into crevices and corners. The Wonder Wheel is also latex free foam with eight wedges that you can use for application and blending. Yes, you wash and re-use these sponges, but since they’re inexpensive, you can replace them without guilt.
When it comes to some things, bigger is not always better. You can’t help but love the UBU Minnie Me’s Mini Tweezer Set ($9.95) especially if you travel or want to take more than one tweezer along with you in your daily makeup bag. You never know when that “stay hair” is going to pop up, or perhaps you will have a splinter? In any case, you can get four tweezers in the four shapes you’re most likely to need for anything, any time, in an adorable, tote-able but practical mini size, and they’re under $10.00. These are great for nail art, too. *with the holidays coming up sooner than you think, the mini tweezer would make a great stocking stuffer for your beauty-obsessed friends. Get a bunch!
For more information visit the Urban Beauty Web Site
In the “good old days” every well heeled women carried their beauty items, jewelry and other essentials in a small, box like piece of luggage, usually hard-sided, called a “train case.” The first known usage of the word was back in the 1940’s, when train travel was at it’s heyday. A (modern, soft-sided) train case is still a lovely way to store beauty essentials, and they’re still a nice way to stay organized when you travel. Orla Kiely makes beauty organizers in modern patterns and fabrics that are adorable, and affordable. We like the two newbies: Garden Party is a a fresh combination of birdies and blossoms, and Poppy Pop features poppies mixed with Orla’s classic tonal stem pattern.
My pick of the collection is the Orla Keily Train Case (Shown in Garden Party- $16.99) for Target with not just one, but two zippered compartments. Bright orange tabs make it easy to see and to use. The top section contains a makeup brush holder with protective flap, and a zip pocket. The bottom section is a wide-open bin for all sorts of beauty and travel essentials. The lining is basic black and easy to spot clean should something leak on it. The shell is polyester. Dimensions: 8.5 ” H x 6.5 ” W x 3.25 ” D.
Orla Kiely has so many other fun to use but practical, modern and colorful beauty organizers it is worth adding a few more to your collection. Some are really just a couple of dollars. With the holidays not far away, consider stocking up and using them to send gifts in to your beauty-obsessed friends. For example, the Birdie Beauty Organizer in Coated Canvas holds a lot of essentials for travel and folds up and it’s just $16.99. The Green Floral Pencil Case in Coated Canvas is just $9.99 and will fit into a medium to large handbag (if you can’t live without your foundation, brushes, etc). A makeup or travel bag always is a welcome gift, and it’s a nice way to package another gift, too.
For more information visit the Orla Kiely Web Site and Target stores and Target.com
Josie Maran Magic Marker Lip & Cheek Stain
Chunky lip pencils that can do double duty as a blush are travel-friendly companions that are a girl-in-a-hurry’s best friend. Josie Maran Magic Marker Lip & Cheek Stain ($19.00) brings you a great product that gives you a marker tip and a hydrating stain in six translucent shades to add a pop of color to both cheeks and lips. The thing I really like about this product is that you can add a wash of matte color or add more for drama, and then, once it it on your lips and/or blended into your cheeks, in the words of the famous info-mercial for another product entirely, you: “set it, and forget it” for hours.
According to creator Josie Maran, the key to this water-based marker is Hyaluronic Acid, that actually helps you skin lock in moisture and retain elasticity. But she also adds exfoliating sugar extracts for a smoothing, plumping effect and more wear-ability. I adore long lasting lip stains and wear them nearly ever day, but they can take a toll on your lips, drying them out and making the skin flake. This one is more gentle than many, without any moisture-draining sulfates, synthetic fragrances, phthalates or parabens. Josie suggests adding a top coat of lip gloss for shine.
As a blush, use sparingly and blend quickly. Obviously, some of the colors will look better on lips than cheeks, depending upon your skin tone. You choose what works best for you. The chunky felt tip makes it easy to draw a precise line or fill in a larger area, but keep in mind that like most of these markers, there is just so much color that can be delivered to the tip at one time and once you have applied it you will need makeup remover to remove it if you “goof.” For more information visit the Josie Maran Web Site
There is no secret that I’ve always been a fan of CeraVe products. They are great for sensitive skin and they are affordable, user friendly and just plain good for your skin. If you are looking for a great cleanser, one that I love and that sits on my bathroom sink, a trusted friend, is CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser ($11.99 12 oz). The plastic pump bottle contains a fragrance-free, soap-free, non-comedogenic, non-irritatating cleanser that hydrates your skin while it whisks away the days’ (or evenings’) oil, dirt, debris and even most makeup. It has three essential ceramides, hylauronic acid, fatty acid esters, glycerin and water that really help to hydrate your skin, but still cleanses skin so well. As someone who has dry and sensitive skin, it amazes me that this “plain and simple” product still beats out so many of the other ones. Patented MVE technology does another thing: while some cleansers strip your skin and make it feel dry, the CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser keeps hydrating your skin FOR HOURS after you use it. Now that’s amazing. (Add the CeraVe Moisturzing Lotion $12.99 12 oz. pump for even better results). *I didn’t try the CeraVe Foaming Facial Cleanser but it’s good for all sorts of skin, including oily and combination skin. Try it!
For Eyes, try this petite tube of eye cream helps to visibly reduce dark circles and puffiness, and to repair that delicate skin around your eyes. Again, it’s a simple, affordable formula that won’t irritate sensitive skin. The hypoallergenic, non-comodegenic, fragrance-free formula is non greasy and absorbs quickly so ou can get on with your day. AMarine and botanical complex, ceramides,Hyaluronic Acid, Niacinamide and CeraVe’s MVE technology all work to make this a fabulous eye cream that is user-friendly and portable, too.
CeraVe is available in drugstores and mass market retailers. For more information visit the CeraVe Web Site
The Wet Brush (Srp. $8.99) is billed as “America’s favorite detangling hairbrush” That might be quite a claim, but in fact, this brush does glide very well through wet or dry hair, without tugging, ripping, tearing or pulling at it. For those with hair that is already compromised, this is critical. And if you have little ones who start screaming the minute you try to run a brush or comb through their tangles after a shampoo, it’s a life-saver.
The brush features “intelliflex” bristles that are thin but very strong and flexible and are guaranteed to fall out. There is also a Wet Brush For Men (srp. $11.98) that is longer and thinner without the padded middle. The bristles gentle detangle and style hair while massaging the scalp to promote healthy hair. This brush doesn’t have the rounded handle, but has a slimmer one, designed to comfortably fit the grip of a man. If your hair is compromised in any way, this brush can help reduce wear and tear on it.
There is a Style for a Cause Set ($14.99) with one for her (pink) one for him (blue) where a $5.00 of the sale will be donated to breast and prostate cancer early detection programs. that’s just fab! Or, you can simply get individual Wet Brush products at mass market retailers and beauty supply stores. Visit The Web Brush Web Site.
I’m not a huge proponent of taking capsules for skin care, but perhaps we can bend a bit and consider these as slightly different. The Heliocare antioxidant capsules—which are an anti-aging supplement that helps protect against sun-related aging problems—consist of Polypodium leucotomos, a fern that grows in Central and South America. This plant has created its own protection from the harsh UV rays in its natural enviroment and Heliocare promises that protection will also come from its tablets. It is hard to say exactly if these help your skin really fight against aging, because we can’t quantify it. As with any nutraceutical, I’d suggest checking with your medical professionals to see how they feel and if there might be any interactions with other things you are taking. If they give you the green light and you want to try, why not? If you’re worried about sun exposure, if you’re worried about aging you can always give it a chance and see if you think it’s working for you. You can get more information here. (Heliocare, $29.99 for 60 capsules)
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