Dupe Star

I have been gone for quite some time and I am so sorry. It’s just that I’ve been on a very important mission. One that distracted me from writing about anything else. My favorite product in the entire world- the best primer, the best sheer foundation, the best touch up liquid powder, my go to the store or gym and have practically perfect skin- had been discontinued and I only had my one tube left, and it was going, quickly. To be honest, it wasn’t entirely discontinued…stateside yes, across the pond, this fabulous product was still easily found. But, alas, I was not going to the UK anytime soon (or distant future for that matter). And I did not know anyone who would be travelling in that direction either. So what is a girl to do?

My tube of Boots No7 True Identity Foundation in Light was quickly disappearing, and despite my best efforts to keep this product for as long as possible, I knew that I needed to find a replacement…n before I ran out! And of course, one that I would love just as much. One that was also affordable (No7 True Identity only set me back about $13.00 for a tube). I travelled from store to store…looking at prestige as well as mass products and everything in between. I went on various blogs to find out what bloggers were recommending. I searched Ulta’s website, Sephora’s too. I even asked Google. Nada. 

My mission became exhausting. I asked beauty advisors in stores if they knew a good dupe for my No7 True Identity. But everything they recommended were products I had already tried. I needed a new product. Finally, on a whim of sorts, and really because I was exhausted from searching, I came across mixed reviews for a Physician’s Formula product, specifically, the Super CC Color-Correction + Care All Over Blur Primer Stick SPF 30. All the positive reviews were things that I knew I wanted my primer to do…provide me with a little coverage, but more about evening skin tone and removing any visible redness as well as reduce the appearance of my pores and fine lines. The negative reviews were mainly due to skin type, as oily skins were not fond of this product. I am not oily, so I thought, let’s give this one a try.

Since I no longer live near an Ulta or Sephora, I went into my local CVS. But, wouldn’t it be my luck that the one product I wanted to try was sold out? My head dropped in disappointment and frustration. But as I picked my head up, my eyes wandered over…next to the empty space was a similar product…maybe even more of what I was looking for, Super CC Color-Correction + Care All Over Blur CC Cream SPF 30. It didn’t say primer (but neither did thecc-cream-pf No7 True Identity Foundation), so I was even more intrigued. What the heck, I need a replacement and I’m tired, (no exhausted) of searching. So, in my hands it went and I made my purchase.

I’ve been using this product for about 3 weeks now, and it is my new go to primer. I love it so much that I am now using more of Physician’s Formula products (I’ll share some of those on another day). It does everything it says it will. I even like the color more that the No7 True Identity, as it is more flesh toned. It is sheer, provides a bit of color correction to my skin, and does the impossible of minimizing my pores and making my fine lines less noticeable. The consistency is a bit more preferred as well, since it has more of a lotion consistency than powder finish, but both were loaded with dimethicone. So I see why someone with an oiler skin wouldn’t like the feel of this product, however, I never felt oily nor did I get oily throughout the day from this product.  The price point is a bit higher…roughly $15 for a 1.0 oz tube. But I can get over that. The one drawback for me however, is the smell. While I don’t mind a scent to products, I want to like that scent and maple syrup is not a scent that I would ever want in a beauty product. However, that smell does dissipate after a few minutes, so I easily got over it. Some of the reviews I read on Ulta’s website did comment on the smell, but it was a positive review, so go figure. If you like what I think is maple syrup, then you would love this product!

I love to use this as a primer as my makeup absolutely lasts all day with out any wear off or creasing in fine lines. I can also wear it alone for when I am just running errands and want to look more presentable. For the times that I want to look more presentable with just a smidge more coverage, I’ll use a powder over and it is the best no makeup makeup look.

I have finally found a dupe and it’s a star!

 

Have you tried Physician’s Formula Super CC Color-Correction + Care All Over Blur Cream SPF 30? Do you love it? Not your favorite? Share with a comment below!

 

I do not work for any of the companies listed, nor did I receive any compensation for this post.

The “D” Word

The dreaded “D” word in beauty, I’m talking about your favorite products being discontinued. I understand why companies do this, I just don’t like it when it happens to my favorite product. I guess it isn’t so bad when the product is being replaced with updated packaging or a better formula (although we all know when that formula changes it no longer is the same or has the same effect that we all once loved) or sometimes it’s the same product but a new name. Unfortunately, this is not the experience with what has happened to a favorite product of mine. My favorite primer ever (read about it here) has been discontinued. The only place I have been able to find it is on eBay, for like $40, when

TrueIdentity

Image from us.boots.com

the original price was only $12.99. I also think that it is available in the UK under a different name, but I can’t be totally sure and I am not headed in that direction, and unfortunately, the UK retailer does not ship to the US. On the plus side, I still have some left, which will buy me some time to try and find a dupe. However, there is going to be the day, after scraping every last bit out, that it will be gone. Forever. And right now, I’m not ready for that day.

What did you do when your favorite product was discontinued? Find a dupe? Use the replacement product the company came out with? Purchase every last piece in the store? Share your discontinued experience below!

 

Pink, It’s Not Just a Color, It’s an Attitude!

20150617_110747 copy

 

I’ve gone pink!!!  No, not my hair.  It’s still purple (or will be once I touch up my color tonight!).  And not my wardrobe.  That is very happily a colorful collection of black, grey, charcoal, light black, oh and I have some white thrown in there for variety.  I’ve gone pink with my make-up!

I’ve never been a pink chic.  Even as a little kid.  While every other little girl wore frilly pink dresses, I tended to wear polka dot dresses in primary colors, floral dresses in blue and white, and yellow was my favorite color.  But something happened to me once I died my hair purple.  Brown tones (even cool ones) felt too brassy on me.  Charcoal greys and soft slates looked nice and became my new neutral for eye make-up.  But the weird color I’ve kept gravitating to is pink shades.  I have quite a few pink eye shadows that came in palettes, so I started playing around with them and I’ve got to say, my new go-to shade is pink!

Here’s my new favorite “pink” products…

L’Oreal Paris Colour Riche Eye Shadow in #105 Rose for Romance.  A beautiful quad.  I use the darker rose color all over, the soft brown in the crease, the light pink as the highlighter and the dark brown as a powder eye liner.

Benefit Dandelion Brightening Face Powder.  A gorgeous pink glow to put on top of an existing blush or bronzer.

W3LL PEOPLE Universalist Colorstick #1 Creamy Pink.  A fantastic creamy stick that gives a golden pink glow without being flat.  Also makes a beautiful cream eye shadow base.

Boots No7 Stay Perfect Shade and Define in Pink Pearl.  For those days when you need a quick eye that will last all day and then some.  A cool, slightly shimmery pink that brightens the eye up.

Sonia Kashuk Lip Definer in Pink Whisper.  A totally natural pink.  For me, it’s the perfect nude as most nudes are way to brown/taupe for me.  And the pink tone doesn’t go all cotton candy on your lips.

L’Oreal Paris Glossy Balm in #260 Vintage Rose.  For when a soft pink is too pale and you need a little pop of color, but not too much of a pop.  No thick or goopy.  Reapplication is a breeze with no flaking or chapping.

Chanel Glossimer in #94.  Hello!  It’s Chanel!  That’s why I love it!  🙂  No, really, it’s a beautiful soft shade of pink.  Not too thick, not to sticky.

L’Oreal Paris Extraordinaire by Colour Riche in #103 Blushing Harmony.  For those days I want more coverage/opacity than a traditional gloss, but don’t want the commitment of a lipstick.  Thicker so it stays put longer, but not sticky.  Reapplication is easy, peasy too.

And my most favorite right now?  The new eye shadow palette from Maybelline, The Blushed Nudes.  A stunning, satin flesh tone for all over the lid, a dark rosy pink for the crease, and a multitude of highlighter colors in various undertones as well as a variety of dark browns to further emphasize the crease and to line the eyes.

What other pink products should I try?

What make-up colors did you think you would never ever try in a million, zillion years, but once you did, you fell in love with?

 

Note:  While I do work for W3LL PEOPLE, I did not receive any compensation for this article and I received the product as a quarterly gratis benefit for working for the company.  For the rest of the companies, we do not work for any of them, nor did we receive any sort of compensation or freebies for writing this article.

 

AHH-CHOOOOOO Beauty…

Dior-Spring-2014-makeup

 

Everyone always hails the coming of spring.  Curse the groundhog if in February he declares weeks upon weeks of more winter.  The vernal equinox brings upon it beautiful spring dresses (and subsequently leg-shaving season) as well as glorious espadrilles (and pedicure season).  In beauty, spring usually brings a softness of colors, rosy cheeks, the emergence of bronzer, or if you’re in my shoes, runny mascara and a rudolph red nose.  I’m talking about seasonal allergies.

Here in San Diego we are having one of the worst allergy seasons in decades.  And if you are anywhere else in the country, if you are not already dealing with springtime allergies, they will soon be headed your way.  It’s hard being a beauty junkie and dealing with allergies.  Your eyes itch and water making eye make-up impossible.  You are constantly sneezing and blowing your nose leaving the center part of your face red and sore, plus have you ever tried to wear red lipstick while dealing with allergies?  It’s virtually impossible to blow your nose and not mess up your lipstick.

So, what’s a girl to do?  I can’t hide out all season.  I’ve been able to find some relief.  Now, none of these remedies have gone through clinical studies or anything.  These are just things that I have found that help me out in my time of need and if you have any tips that help you, PLEASE share!!!

For starters, in the spring time I avoid putting any anti-aging skincare on or around my nose area.  That area is going to be tender anyway and putting some of those harsh ingredients on it can burn like crazy and make you say more than a few choice words.  Here’s where you need to get something for sensitive skin.  Preferably something with aloe in it.  I like to use the Boots Experts Sensitive Hydrating Serum from Target.  With aloe and mineral water, it cools, soothes and moisturizes my poor schnoz without burning or irritation.

For covering up the redness, I like to use a cream foundation.  They tend to be a bit more soothing than liquids and won’t dry out your skin like a powder.  They also tend to provide more coverage.  I like using the W3LL PEOPLE Narcissist foundation stick because it also has aloe in it in addition to chamomile to sooth skin.  It’s also VERY easy to readjust your makeup if you smear it a bit while blowing your nose.

For eyes, you have two options…go with waterproof mascara (which I hate) or play up your lips and go without eye make-up.  But wait, didn’t you just say earlier that lipstick is impossible with allergies and blowing your nose constantly?  I did, but with all of the great stains out there, stain your lips a fun spring time color and then just put balm on your lips the rest of the day.

I also suffer severely from sinus pressure due to allergies.  One thing that helps me out is to put my eye cream/gel that is used for puffiness all up and over my sinus cavities (externally that is).  Eye treatments designed to treat puffiness typically contain ingredients to increase blood flow in the area where applied.  Increased blood flow allows things to start moving in the area you put it.  I assume it does the same thing near the sinuses.  I don’t have proof that this works, but for me personally, I do seem to feel some relief when I do this, especially if I put my cream/gel in the fridge first.

What do you do with your beauty routine when allergies strike you?

 

While I do work for W3LL PEOPLE, I did not receive any sort of extra compensation for this article.  I just really, really love the product.  The other companies listed we do not work for nor did we receive any sort of compensation.

Photo from luxuo.com

Time For A Cocktail

cocktailsIt was a looong week and I haven’t been getting enough sleep (which is one of my favorite ‘me time’ things to do…I love naps!) and I’ve been looking a little dumpy, tired, with dull looking skin and overall just not the best version of myself. This is when I either buy a new product in hopes of an instant miracle or mix one or two products together for a quick mini skin treatment, a beauty cocktail of sorts.

Stylists do it, estheticians do it, and I do it…and by “it” I am referring to “cocktailing” your products for a faster yet still effective way to use your products. It can also save the amount of product you use overall, thus saving you money down the road.

So, back to my skin. It’s stressed out and needs to calm down. But what is my skin in the mood for? It definitely needs a beauty cocktail! Well, I know that I need some moisture yet I’m also getting a little breakout and besides my Clarisonic, I haven’t exfoliated in I don’t know how long it’s been. So, that means I’m also going to need to exfoliate. In my arsenal I keep on hand is my favorite instant gratification exfoliator, Boots No7 Total Renewal Microdermabrasion Exfoliator. Love it! This is a super fine, intense exfoliator that really brightens your skin the first time you use it. My skin always feels amazing and baby smooth immediately after using it.

I remember an esthetician I used to know and how she taught me that oil fights oil, meaning, in order to get rid of oily skin, she told me to use an oil. The logic is that the skin receives oil from application so it does not need to produce it’s own oil for moisture. In the end, your skin produces less oil so you become less oily over time. So, I wanted to combat the oiliness I was getting in my t-zone and thought of my recent purchase of the Wholly Hemp Moisturizing Cream Tea Tree Oil. Perfect! Not only will I be getting oil to combat that t- zone oiliness, it’s also Hemp Oil, which I previously learned naturally thins out sebum in the skin, making pores less noticeable. And of course tea tree oil is known to be a natural remedy for acne. Even better.

I decided to do equal parts of No7 Microdermabrasion and my Wholly Hemp Oil with Tea Tree Moisturizer (this is like a butter consistency) then massaged on my face for about 60 seconds, allowing the microdermabrasion to really push the hemp moisturizer with tea tree into the skin. Then I rinsed my face with look warm water. I was left with super smooth skin, moisturized and so glowy. But, more importantly, I looked…awake. Yay! It worked!

The morale to this post is, you do not need to spend a bunch of money on a new product. You may already have two or three products you too can cocktail together for a quick yet effective skin treatment. Below are some of my favorite beauty cocktails. Do you beauty cocktail?

Clay Mask with Foaming Cleanser (detoxifying cleanser)
Clay Mask with Exfoliator (detoxifying exfoliation)
Shampoo and Hair Serum (gentle shampoo, less hair fallout)
Foundation and Moisturizer (personalized BB or CC cream)
Liquid Highlighter and Foundation (sheer foundation with dewy finish)
Liquid Highlighter and Moisturizer (clear BB cream)

 

 

 

We do not work for any of the companies listed in the post nor did we receive any compensation.

My Favorite Primer…Ever.

This is a bold statement. I mean, it seems like even when I find a product I love, I think, “What if there is something better?” And so it goes, I try the so called next latest and greatest, only to be disappointed and ultimately return to the product that I originally loved.

Well, I have finally learned my lesson and found the absolute Best. Primer. Ever. It has now been about 3 years and I have yet to find or try anything else out there that performs the same. Nothing has come close.

Why is this primer so amazing? Well, it hides and disguises fine lines and pores, making them less noticeable. Also, my foundation layers beautifully, and I don’t need to use as much either, because the primer has a little bit of coloring to also disguise any imperfections on the skin. On days I want a “No Makeup-Makeup Look” this is my immediate go to. Just a dab will give me the, “I have perfect skin” look with out it looking like anything is on my skin. I have received compliments on my skin when I wear this primer alone. On days when I want the full coverage look, I start with my primer and do a light layer of foundation followed by a light layer of powder and I never get the cake-y look (You know what I mean, when you need a chisel to remove that full coverage foundation).

Now, I have to be honest with you. The product I am speaking of doesn’t really exist. I mean it is actually two products. Years ago, I was bored and after playing around I discovered the amazingness they created. I fell in love with the results and have not changed since. Okay, so what are the products I so highly speak of?

The first is from one of my favorite lines, Becca, and the product is the Shimmering Skin Perfector in White Pearl.

Image from Beccacosmetics.com

Image from Beccacosmetics.com

This is a wonderful highlighter that can be used alone or as I have done, mixed with another

product (you can even mix with your foundation for a more radiant, glow-y, finish). The second product is from Boots No7, the True Identity Foundation in LightYes, it is called a foundation.  However, it is so very, very sheer, and the texture and finish is so similar to the Smashbox Photofinish Foundation Primer, that really, it should be listed as a Primer, but, hey, I didn’t name the product, I  just use it. True Identity has a light tint that minimizes redness in the skin, but has the benefits of a primer, filling in fine lines and pores so they are less noticeable. The product has a matte look with the feeling of a powder. It can also be used to touch up your T-zone throughout the day with out becoming cake-y like a powder can do when you reapply during the day to those oilier areas.

Now, both products alone are fabulous. However, combined, they truly are the ultimate primer. Your skin will look naturally flawless, not too matte, not too dewy, just the perfect combination. I have found that my perfect combination is a 1:1 ratio. You may want to play with the ratio a bit more if you tend to be on the more oily side (more No7 and less Becca) or if you are on the dry side you may prefer more of the Becca product and less of the No7 product. I myself am Normal – Dry, and find the 1:1 ration is perfect for me.

If you are on the lookout for a perfect primer, I urge you to give this a try. Another benefit of two products is that it will last twice as long.

Becca’s Shimmering Skin Perfector retails for $41 for 1.7 ounces and can be found on the Becca website, Sephora and Ulta to name a few.
Boots No7 True Identity Foundation retails for $12.49 for 1.35 ounces and can be found at Target, Drugstore.com or the Boots website.

Image from us.boots.com

Image from us.boots.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

I do not work for any of the companies listed above nor did I receive any sort of compensation for this blog article.