Tag Archives: affordable

Skin Owl Argan Infusions

Back in late February, I wrote this post introducing Annie Tevelin, AKA the Skin Owl, and interviewing her on her lovely line of minimal, but nonetheless effective Skin Owl Argan Infusions. I’ve been testing out 3 samples that she sent me, 1 of each type of Argan Infusion available, of these lovely skin treatments and I’m happy to report back that these are just as awesome as they sound!

First off, they come in 3 different variations – Lavender, Clary Sage and Geranium. Although they are said to be suited for all skin types, each has a focus. For instance, lavender is said to be most beneficial for sensitive, oily, and acne prone skin while clary sage is said to be best for dry, mature skin types. Geranium is said to be best for combination skin types and those battling dullness. That being said, they are all safe for use on all skin types and I can attest to that because I’ve used all 3 of them on my sensitive, acne prone, combination skin with lovely results.

Argan Infusion: Lavender

They all come in lovely, yet simple dropper bottles and each has a different, but pleasant scent. My favorite is the lavender because I find it really relaxing and I got the best results with it, given it’s most recommended for my skin type. That being said, the others worked well also, but the results were less noticeable.

These all absorb almost immediately into the skin, leaving no residue behind, though a slight after thought of their given scents remain for a bit then fade after 30 or so minutes. Overnight, the results are pretty noticeable. Acne looks calmer and more diminished, redness and pigmentation look more calm and even which gives the skin more clarity, and the skin just looks much better on the whole.

One thing I will say is that if you have very dry skin, I would recommend this be used in conjunction with a more intense moisturizer or balm like Suti’s Organic Purity Balm or something as this is not moisturizing enough, in my opinion, for dry patches. I do think it’s plenty enough for combination to oily skin types, though, especially in Spring and Summer months. For dry skin types or in the Winter if you’ve experienced patchiness, you will need to layer a cream or balm over this. That being said, the results will still be apparent as I’ve used these both alone on the skin and underneath a skin balm with the same results.

Aside from use on the face, this can also be used to treat dryness  on the body, decollete and hands, though, again, you may need to layer a heavier balm if you’re battling serious dryness. For simple things like elbow patchiness, though, this will do fine alone. I had the best results with the Geranium Argan Infusion for skin dryness, but I think any one of these would work well. I also used the Clary Sage Argan Infusion on the ends of my hair which helped tame some flyaways really nicely and on the bottom of my feet. No idea if it had much effect on my feet, but the scent and feeling of it was nice and relaxing before bed! You’ll likely get best results on your feet is you apply a few drops and then put on socks before bedtime. I also used the Lavender Argan Infusion to heal some little cuts and a small oven burn I’d gotten on my hands and it really helped them to heal and diminish a LOT faster than if left to heal in their own time.

Overall, these Argan Infusions work superbly {yep I said that} and I’d highly recommend them to anyone and everyone who has skin concerns that need tending to – these are just the treatments to get the job done!

Check them out at Skin Owl – here.

See My Interview with the Skin Owl, herself – here.

Have You Ever Tried Any Skin Owl Argan Infusions?

What Are Your Thoughts On These?

I’d Love to Know in the Comments!

Brushes Hanging

Original Brush Tree by Benjabelle.com

I follow Glamour’s Beauty section “Girls in the Beauty Department” via Bloglovin’ and I was really excited to see this article this morning featuring this awesome new beauty aid which allows a simple, hassle- free way to dry your makeup brushes!

Brushes Hanging

Mini Brush Tree – Benjabelle.com

They offer 2 different sizes – an original or a mini  brush tree – which you can use to hold your makeup brushes upside down in order to let the water dry and drain out of them without damaging the brush bristles or loosening the glue on their handles, something that often happens when makeup brushes are left to dry on their sides or bristle sides up.

I think these are awesome makeup brush aids and a really fantastic idea for makeup lovers like myself! Thanks to the brilliant women at Glamour for sharing this awesome new beauty aid!

You can see purchase these makeup brush trees from Benjabelle  – here.

What Do You Think of These Makeup Brush Trees?

How Do You Dry Your Makeup Brushes After Cleaning Them?

I’d Love to Know Your Thoughts On This!

 

First Aid Beauty - Ultra Repair Cream

Most of the time lately, I’ve been doing product reviews from items that companies send me and while that’s amazing and just as nice, it’s also fun to find my own products to try out while shopping and then review those as well.

This is one such product. I purchased it on a recent trip I took to Sephora when I picked up a brush replacement head for my Clarisonic. I actually bought it in the 2 Oz. tube, but I’ll be picking up the largest size I can find ( maybe on their site directly ) as soon as possible because it is AMAZING.

First off, the Ultra Repair Cream is meant to hydrate, heal and provide relief to those suffering from irritation of any kind. They market it toward those with skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, dermatitis, keratosis pilaris, or anyone who suffer from itchy, dry skin, but I really think anyone could benefit from it. Personally, I think everyone should just have this cream sitting around because it’s that awesome, but hey, that’s just me.

Including a variety of hydrating and soothing ingredients such as colloidal oatmeal and shea butter, this cream is incredibly hydrating and thick without feeling heavy, greasy, or leaving any kind of residue. I love that because if I’m not using body oil, I don’t want my cream to be overly oily really. I just want it to soak in and dissipate once it’s been massaged into the skin and this does just that and more. It’s extremely nourishing without feeling heavy at all, but it really calms down itchiness and dryness in about 24 hours. I apply this before bed and wake up with calmer, more hydrated and healthier looking skin.

Another thing that really makes this cream stand out for me is the fact that I can use it anywhere, including on my face, and not break out. That is a huge deal for me given that most face creams make my blemish prone combination skin flare up. This does not. In fact, when I had some dry patches on my chin, not only did they clear up overnight with this, but it made my skin look healthier and more balanced. Many products often advertise that they can be used anywhere, but few seldom actually can be, you know, without dire consequences. This really can be used anywhere, safely, on any skin type with any skin concerns and I truly believe you’d see benefits from continued use. I have.

Aside from this cream being really affordable, well formulated, and super effective, I love that it’s not something they’ve given a lot of hype. Not to say it doesn’t deserve it, but I feel like I’ve discovered a hidden gem in First Aid Beauty! This was the first product I tried from them and now I’m bound to try out their entire line because this experience was that good.

You can check out the First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream – here or at Sephora where I purchased it – here.

Have You Tried First Aid Beauty Products?

If so, What’s Your Favorite Product from their Line?

I’d Love to Know in the Comments!

Related Articles:

The Best Face Primer for Acne Prone & Sensitive Skin

My Favorite Under Eye Concealer for Sensitive Skin

The Best Under Eye Cream for Sensitive Skin

Suti Skincare Purity Organic Balm Review

The Truth About Oil in Skincare

Hot Cleansing Oil

I’ve been meaning to review this cleansing oil for some time as I’ve had it and been testing it in various ways, on and off, since December. I know, I know, that’s a crazy long time, but I’ve just had so much stuff to review, it’s been overwhelming to test everything properly and review them in good time so I hope you’ll forgive me 😛

Anyway, this cleansing oil was sent to me for review from the lovely people over at Gold Sakura, a beauty shop which exclusively offers natural Japanese beauty products, and I was thrilled because I love Asian beauty products! If you haven’t experienced Asian beauty products yet, you really ought to. This particular cleansing oil is the Moist Hinoki Deitanseki Hot Cleansing Oil which is a naturally formulated cleanser from Japan that utilizes honey, yogurt filtrate, castor oil and Japanese cypress oil also known in Japanese as Hinoki.

This cleansing oil is perfect for all skin types, especially acne prone, because it really heats up when you use it and clears out pores, unlike some cleansing oils which can feel leave a heavy oily residue, this one feels heavy while you cleanse your skin, but it deep cleans and rinses completely off so there’s no film left on the skin when you’re done and your skin still gets completely clean. Another thing I really love about this cleansing oil is the hinoki ( Japanese cypress oil ) in it because it makes the oil feel almost cooling to the skin while you massage it in and leaves the skin feeling really fresh and clean like a more stripping cleanser would, only without the stripping or the harsh ingredients.

This is great for removing makeup and its super gentle, yet effective. I highly recommend this for those struggling with acne who also battle dryness because this hydrates without irritating or clogging pores. All other skin types could probably benefit from using this as well, though I think it’d be most beneficial for dry acne prone skin types. The cooling, refreshing effect of it really does feel like a Japanese hot spring or something and I’ve quite enjoyed trying it out!

You can learn more about and purchase this cleansing oil from Gold Sakura – here.

What’s Your Favorite Cleansing Oil?

Have You Ever Tried Japanese Beauty Products? 

I’d Love to Hear Your Thoughts & Recommendations in the Comments!

Related Articles:

My Top 10 Favorite Asian Beauty Products

A Closer Look At My Favorite Taiwanese Beauty Brand – Naruko 

Get Naturally Clear Skin with Naruko’s Apple Seed & Tranexamic Acid Line

Hi All!

I hope you’re all enjoying the weekend!

Thanks so much to all of you who signed up for the O.N.E. Skincare Giveaway – I really appreciate all of the liking, following and tweeting everyone did so thank you so much!!

Congratulations to our winner who was randomly selected, Sharon David!

Please email me ASAP with your mailing information so I can get your prize out to you!

If you didn’t win, fret not, I have more giveaways in the works soon so stay tuned! 😉

Have a Great Day!

Happy Saturday!

I hope you’re all having a nice weekend!

Last Summer, I had the lovely opportunity to try out this amazing all-in-one beauty product by O.N.E. Skincare and really enjoyed it quite a lot.

If this is news to you, O.N.E. Skincare was created by one woman in her kitchen with a mission to create the ultimate all-in-one beauty product. The formula is lovely and natural and includes nourishing ingredients such as sunflower, olive oil, vitamin E, and lavender. If you want to learn more about my experiences with this product, check out my original review for O.N.E. Skincare – here.

I did a giveaway back with that original review and I’m so happy that O.N.E. Skincare has offered to sponsor a giveaway again so that more readers have a chance to discover their lovely product!

This giveaway starts today and will end this Friday, March 8th, 2013, so Hurry & Sign Up While You Can!

Good Luck 🙂 

Click Here to Enter the Giveaway!

Annie Tevelin – the Skin Owl

SkinOwl

I recently discovered a new beauty brand called SkinOwl – a beauty brand created by the Skin Owl herself, Annie Tevelin. After years of working in the beauty industry and experiencing the empty promises of many over priced and often ineffective cosmetic brands, the Skin Owl (Annie’s alter ego)  was created as a way to fight off Annie’s skin problems in a natural, yet effective way that was affordable, honest and simple. The goal is for SkinOwl to be a voice of truth in the beauty industry. I was very lucky to be able to pick the Skin Owl’s brain and share a bit of her brilliance and philosophy on beauty – Read on for my interview with her!

Argan Infusion: Lavender

Argan Infusion: Lavender

How did you first get into beauty?

 I was so enthralled with skincare and makeup as a child. Every time I went shopping with my mother I would wander off to the cosmetics department. The women were so pretty, so put together. They were my first beauty mentors. I would go from counter to counter asking for tips and tricks and I was no more than 10! I was a sponge, taking everything in at such a young age. All the colors and textures. I was enamored. I’m convinced makeup taught me what color was way before Crayola. It wasn’t until I turned 25 that I decided to change careers and take a risk on a long-lost dream.

When did you create your alter ego, the Skin Owl, and what is the meaning behind the name itself?

SkinOwl was created in 2011 and was born to fill a void in the cosmetics industry. Like many of my clients, I spent a lot of money on products and treatments that didn’t work. Dermatologists cost me a lot of money and most of what they prescribed irritated my skin in the long run. When I thought about all of the women who might feel overwhelmed or lost when shopping for products, and with so many products available to them, I knew I had something to offer them with my experience. It just made sense for me to help people the best I could to look and feel their most beautiful. SkinOwl defines beautiful skin, wisdom, and truth as one entity.

Argan Infusion: Clary Sage

I’ve done a bit of reading about your products and I know that they include what you call the Argan Infusion. What exactly is the Argan Infusion and why is it so beneficial to skin?

Argan Infusion is a luxurious facial oil that can be used as a treatment or moisturizer on the face, nails and body. It comes in three infusions, Lavender, Geranium, and Clary Sage, each of which cater to different skin concerns. I’m not interested in creating “fluffy” products. I only want to offer healthy ingredients in products that work & Argan Infusion is a prime example of that. The anti-inflammatory properties are noticed after one day. The skin’s luminosity and radiance is restored in less than a week. And within a month, most people claim that they’ve never seen their skin look so youthful and balanced. It’s exciting to watch!

Argan Infusion: Geranium

Why is beauty integrity so important to you, not only as a person, but as a brand?
Integrity is the most important thing a person can have. It makes or breaks a person’s character. I’ve always wanted my personal life to mirror my professional life. I can’t imagine seeking a healthy lifestyle, having a positive outlook, and trying to achieve balance in my personal life without wanting the same for my company. SkinOwl has allowed me take what I find important and apply it elsewhere, so that it hopefully brings out the best in others.
And finally, please describe your idea of true beauty in one word or phrase. 
“True beauty has nothing to hide. Feeling beautiful, not looking beautiful, is the key. “
– the Skin Owl

Thanks so much to the Skin Owl for her lovely and honest interview!

Stay Tuned for My Review of SkinOwl Argan Infusions Coming Soon!

To find out which Argan Infusion is right for your skin, check here.

Have You Ever Heard of the Skin Owl or Her Products?

What Do You Think of the Skin Owl’s Beauty Philosophy?

Let Me Know in the Comments!

Dynamic Duo

I was recently very lucky to be sent 4 products from the EVOLVh Hair Care line and I’m so glad because they just might be some of the most simple, yet effective products I’ve yet to try in terms of natural hair care.

First off, if you haven’t heard of EVOLVh, their hair beauty philosophy involves offering products with healthier ingredients (hence the h in EVOLVh which stands for hair and healthy) without making it complicated and while maintaining the luxury often associated with many standard salon products.

To learn more about their history and company goals and standards, check out their About Us page.

In terms of packaging and performance, I’d say they’ve done a great job. The packaging is sleek and chic as opposed to bells and whistles that other companies might employ, but I prefer the sleek design personally. The products all include a variety of beneficial ingredients including a pH balanced base to help keep your hair at the right pH level and infused with a variety of 20 herbs to nourish and repair hair along with plant oils, wheat amino acids, and various vitamins and extracts.

UltraShine Moisture Shampoo

 

Their UltraShine Moisture Shampoo is sulfate, paraben and sodium-chloride free making it non-drying, body safe, and safe for keratin smoothing treatments (if used by hair stylists in a salon). I’ve been using these products for about a little over a month now and I really like this shampoo. Most shampoos, I’ve found, simply seem to clean your hair and nothing more, even the healthy varieties. When my hair was not so damaged, it never really made a difference to me, but now that my hair is super winter storm dry and very unmanageable, my hair gets super tangled and is difficult to get a comb through, even right out of the shower. Although this shampoo is not necessarily a miracle in a bottle for me, it does seriously help to detangle and smooth my hair a LOT. I like that the scent of the shampoo is pleasant, yet non-offensive. It reminds me a bit of Johnson’s Baby Shampoo, but obviously without the chemicals, and I really enjoyed that because it felt sort of nostalgic to me as most American kids grew up using that. My hair is much softer and more manageable and I experience a lot less of a battle when I go to comb my hair out after a shower so, for that, I have really loved using this and will continue to until it runs out. I may actually purchase this one when it runs out because I find it definitely gets the job done.

UltraShine Moisture Conditioner

 

The UltraShine Moisture Conditioner is sodium chloride and paraben free and also vegan. Both their shampoo and conditioner are meant for any hair type from thin and fine to course and thick hair to damaged, dry, or frizzy, whatever your needs. I really like how all the products in this brand work together because what the shampoo doesn’t do in terms of moisture for my hair, this conditioner picks up where it left off and gets the rest of the job done.This is super softening and conditioning ( really! ) and it really does help detangle my hair. I also feel like I’ve seen a huge difference in the texture and appearance of my hair in this past month of using these products because I noticed my hair is a lot less frizzy, a lot less tangled, and a lot smoother, shinier, and softer when it dries straight out of the shower.

StartSmart Leave-in Conditioner

 

The StartSmart Leave-In Conditioner Spray is one of my favorites out of the line, mostly because my hair gets so tangled and this really does help. It’s a great detangler on dry hair ( I don’t need it much after showering thanks to the shampoo + conditioner duo ) and also helps to make my hair shinier and less frizzy. Apparently this also functions as a heat protectant, though I’ve avoided heat styling tools lately to minimize damage and be able to see the most results while using these products. Another benefit I really like about this product is that it includes a variety of protective and hydrating plant oils which also help protect your hair from UV damage as well.

Ultimate Styling Lotion

Their Ultimate Styling Lotion was just alright for me, but that’s mostly because I don’t have a huge need for it. I did find it works really well to minimize frizz, amp up shine, condition and volumize hair, especially when used on damp hair and then blow dried. I got the best results straight out of the shower when I applied a bit of this from the middle of my hair to the ends and then blow dried it all. I love that this also includes natural herbs and plant waxes to style hair instead of synthetic ones and I really enjoyed using it to braid my hair because it keeps my hair in place all day without making it go all hard or crunchy like a hairspray would.

Overall, I really enjoyed this hair care line. I don’t know if I would consider them to be my holy grail of hair care, but they are a really solid brand nonetheless. I like that any hair type could use these products and that the products gave me great results. I do wish I could see more of a difference in my hair, but perhaps I need more time using them in order to see more results. I love that this line makes my hair manageable, but doesn’t weight it down or leave it too oily as my hair can easily go from one extreme to the next. These products are just the right amount of hydration and volume without being too greasy or too drying and I love their high standard of using natural ingredients. Lastly, I really love that their products are made in the USA as I love a good product which also helps support the economy. I’ll definitely keep using them until I run out and I’ll update you all if I see more results or benefits.

Check out the entire line of EVOLVh products – here.

What is Your Favorite Hair Care Line?

Do You prefer Natural or More Conventional Brands?

Let Me Know in the Comments!

 

happy valentine's day

Happy Valentine’s Day! 

I hope you all have some fun plans for today, whether you’re going out with friends or a special someone! If you have no idea what to do (single or not!), I did a post that might give you some ideas – here.

Anyway, my boyfriend and I decided to postpone V-Day plans to the weekend since we both work during the week and won’t really have time to do much, but I figured I’d at least do a Lust List for Valentine’s Day since I think it’s such a fun holiday and it’s been awhile since I’ve done a lust list so I hope you enjoy!

Valentine'sDayLustList-StorybookApothecary.com

RMS Un-Cover Up, SteamCream – Happiness, Scotch Naturals Polish in NeatRMS Cream Shadow in Solar, ILIA Tinted Lip Conditioner in Crimson & Clover, Tarte 12 Hour BB Cream, Le Feu de L’Eau – Le Feu Profound Rose Candle, Josie Maran Argan Infinity Cream, Mermaid Perfume, Alice & Peter Cheery Cherry Pie Perfume, Scotch Naturals Polish in Blood & Sand, Kissing Elixirs Fresh Breath Mist in Mint Vanilla, BKR HEARTbkr Limited Edition Glass Bottle, ILIA Copper Mascara in Macao, ECOTOOLS Foam Applicator, & SteamCream – Verona.

On a more eclectic note, I really really want this heart shaped umbrella from Fab.com. Isn’t it cute?!

Pinned Image

Heart Shaped Umbrella – Fab.com

I’d really love to re-create these adorable Valentine’s themed nails as well!

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Valentine’s Day theme nails From shopobaz.tumblr.com

Lastly, this lovely dessert from ABeautifulMess that’s perfect for Valentine’s Day looks delicious!

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Berries in Chocolate Bowl from ABeautifulMess.com

How will you be spending Valentine’s Day?

Related Articles: 

Fun & Girly Ideas for Valentine’s Day For Singles & Couples!

the debute of a modern classic...

I have been meaning to review these mini samples I received from Face Atelier, a really nice Canadian makeup brand, a few months ago, but I literally have not had the time to do so until now so I hope you’ll forgive me!

To give you a bit of back ground, if you’re unfamiliar, Face Atelier is a Canadian makeup brand which seeks to allow every woman to look the best version of themselves and does so really effectively. They are PETA approved cruelty free and promote using ingredients that give you the look you want when you want it. One of my favorite things about this brand is their tagline:

“Face Atelier…because looking good is the best revenge!” 

I absolutely loved trying out these mini samples and I found that each one of them offered something fun and unique for any young girl or woman’s makeup look.

I tried out a few of their lip products and enjoyed each of them in turn. Cool Coral and Coral Reef Lipsticks were very similar, though they were different, if not in a very subtle way. The Cool Coral lipstick was a bit more peachy pink beige whereas the Coral Reef shade offered a bit more pink in its shade. I also tried one of their Lip Glazes in Primrose, which is a berry tint. I really love the name as I’m a big HG fan, but the glaze I found to be really nice. It looks like it might be sticky at first, but it goes on really smooth and glossy and there’s no stickiness. I really enjoyed using it as a top lip coat over other colors. I also tried out another lip product called Pout which is a clear sort of gloss and works really nicely as a lip base or top glossy coat. I don’t find it particularly hydrating to lips one way or the other, but it looks really lovely on.

The next few products I tried out were all for the face and I really enjoyed the finish of all of them. I tried the Ultra Foundation first in Porcelain and found that it goes on very smooth, the coverage is light to medium and looks very natural, but still offers more coverage than tinted moisturizers. I really like the color as it suits me quite well in the winter, but I think it’d be a bit too light come summer. The loose powder I tried out in Light and Translucent.  Light really helped to mattify my skin, but it didn’t feel like I was wearing a mask nor did it make my skin look ultra chalky, like some do. It just looked really nice whilst allowing my skin to show through which I loved. The translucent loose powder was great as a setting powder and did actually help my foundation last longer. Lastly, I tried their Ultra Camoflauge Duet in Light  and I was pleased at how well this one does at covering spots and dark circles. My only complaint is I don’t think it’s quite creamy enough for drier skin types and therefore isn’t really a universal formula in my mind because of that.

Overall, I really think that Face Atelier is a great makeup brand for those who want all the basics to be covered. They don’t do anything that’s particularly astounding, in my opinion, but their products are really solid and they do look really nice on the skin. I wish they were a bit more natural and skincare oriented, but then, that’s my own personal preference. Aside from those, I really think anyone would love this brand. The products didn’t irritate my skin or anything and I really liked that because many products which are not necessarily natural often do. I think my favorite of the products I tried were probably the 2 coral lipsticks and the lip Pout which I found to be really wearable and fun for everyday. I also really like the fact that they promote female empowerment and looking your best instead of promoting an unrealistic beauty ideal.

You can learn more about Face Atelier and their products – here.

Have You Tried Face Atelier Makeup?

What do you think of makeup brands which offer great products, but aren’t natural?

Let Me Know in the Comments!