Archive for July 2014

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IPSY July Subscription Bag

Saturday, July 19, 2014

So I finally got my Ipsy bag and its safe to say I wasn't as happy to be getting it as I usually am. Unfortunately for me I just cant stand to wait to find out what is my bag just like every other person so I decided to look at a couple of sneak peaks and I was quite excited for this bag. But when I checked my glam room I was disappointed with what I got. First of all I was not that happy with the bag we got after last months bag designed by Rebecca Minkoff I had high hopes for this month's bag but when I got the package there was a strong unpleasant cheap smell coming from the bag and it was a bright neon pink square bag that looked like a "ravioli"!

1.  The first product I got was a Lord & Berry pencil eyeliner. It was a strong black color and it glided smoothly but it smudged as soon as I touched it. I have never tried the brand and it was a sample size so I think Im just going to give this product away because I usually only wear waterproof eyeliner and I don't think this will fare well with me.

2. The second product was a models own nail polish and at first I was excited for this nail polish because I heard great things about it but I was never able to try it because it is a brtish brand and they don't sell it here in the US. But the color was red translucent and glittery but the glitter was very large specs that didn't transfer well. So I was quite disappointed with this product. (Full size product)

3. The next product was in a plastic bag that was made by Clear Clinic Laboratories and is called vanished clear spot treatment. The applicator is spongy and the smell is pungent and smells of chemicals. The product description does remind of the origins super spot remover that I do own and use once in awhile when my face begins to breakout. I don't think Im going to use this product because my face is quite sensitive and I don't feel like trying any new products because I am at the moment using Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Beta treatments and I don't want to ruin that treatment by testing out other skincare products. (Sample size)

4. Ahh the next product was another sunscreen product by hang ten. This is a dark tanning oil with SPF 08 which is quite low. I don't think I want to use it because I tried their sunscreen last month and I was not impressed with the finish, it left a greasy oily layer and I was just disappointed because I had high hopes for that sunscreen. (Sample size)

5. The last product was supposed to be my favorite and I guess it still is but I was just hoping to get the duo powder eye shadow and instead I got the 5 in 1 BB advanced performance cream eyeshadow and Im not gonna lie I did like the product itself and when I tried it on I was surprised with the finish it was quite long lasting on my hand so Im quite excited to try the product on for a day just to test out the staying power.

*Bag was purchased with my own money

Review: Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Peel

I am really excited to be sharing this review. I have waited enough to make sure of the results of this product and I am ready to begin.

 First, I have oily acne prone skin and I never suffered with extreme out of control acne. However, the last couple of months due to stress, my skin freaked out and I was introduced to cystic acne (wonderful). I would get one or two cystic acne and as soon as I would get rid of them,  I would have another one come out. It became a never ending rotation. When one is healed an another one comes out. I tried everything out in the market changed my diet, stripped down my skincare routine to the just the basics, and tried countless acne medications. Nothing showed improvement in my overall skin. One day, I was just researching about peels and reading reviews and that day I went to Sephora. I  picked up a first aid beauty  cream and as I was about to pay I saw the travel size Dr. Dennis Gross alpha beta peel. I remember reading about the good effects of peels and decided to pick it up. There are two types the extra strength and the daily formula with five treatments in it . Of course, I picked up the extra strength one. I never heard of this specific product and brand but heard a lot about face peels. Therefore, soon as I got back home I did my homework to get a background on what this product does and the results, if any.

First of all, reviews on makeup by alley, Nordstrom, sephoara, Carolina hierons, and youtubevideos raved about how great this product is. I will say this product is expensive. The thirty day treatment costs $90 with tax. so its an investment. The five day treatment that I purchased was $15.00. I used the first treatment at night and immediately the following morning noticed that my cystic acne was significantly smaller. After five treatments,my acne was GONE. Let me tell you I was baffled by the immediate results, therefore, I purchased another five treatments to make sure that my skin was improving due to this product and not something else. Used the next five treatments and than I found myself at sephora and with no hesitation I purchased the 30 day $90 treatment. Now, my skin in less than three weeks is at its very best.The peels are keeping my acne at bay and helping with my acne scars.I still get normal acne once in awhile but I just rely on using the peel that night and expect that the next morning my acne is going to barely be there.

1. Only use this at night. This is a peel, therefore, your skin will react to exposure to the sun if worn during the day and if you don't use at least an SPF50. Stay on the safe side and only use at night.
2. Apply it also on your neck.
3.If you have sensitive skin, this might be to harsh for your skin
4. I am not a skin care specialist and this is my review on a product that worked for me
5. Simplify your skin care while using this. Cleanse, use the peel, simple serum that doesn't claim it does everything, and night cream. That is it.
6. Be patient with the product. I promise that you should see results because I am not the only one raving about this product.
7.Do your homework. It is always important to know the active ingredients in products, such as a peels. Know what to expect and and listen to your skin.

Thanks for reading.
xo A

New Favorite palette goes to....

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

I never thought the day would come when I converted into a Smash box fan. Don't worry, Urban Decay still makes the best eye shadows, however, I think its time to give other brands a chance. Few weeks ago, I was at Nordstrom Rack as usual because their makeup section is golden and of course, if you don't go to Nordstrom rack often than you wont know all the great makeup deals. They have a lot of deals on special edition high end palettes and products. That day, I stumbled upon this Smashbox eye shadow palette. The palette retails for $40 and it was on offer for $20 so I was getting a pretty good deal on it. I tested out the shadows and they were highly pigmented, smooth and beautiful neutral shades. Bought the palette expecting myself to use it once in awhile. However, that was not the case. Since I bought it, haven't used any other palette. Surprisingly, the shadows are not chalky and are long wearing. I use the urban decay eye shadow primer under it but on days were I forget to, the shadows wore really well no their own. I apply the shadows with a big fluffy eye shadow brush and I sweep it all over my lids. I have been using the bronze color in the in the top left the most. I love that  some of the shadows are glittery but not sparkly. The glitter is very finely milled and looks beautiful on the lids. Smashbox has impressed me and I will check out more of their products and actually I just recently picked up a waterproof brow definer from them and yup, I am loving it......wait ago Smashbox I am fan.

Thanks for reading.

xo A

This weeks Picks...

A couple of products that will be making more of an appearance this week are Chanel Vitaumiere aqua foundation, L'Oreal telescopic shocking extension waterproof mascara and Sinful Colors nail polish in 1169 Sugar Rush.

L'Oreal Mascara: First and for most, I want to address the importance of this product. The L'Oreal telescopic shocking extension waterproof mascara is phenomenal. This might not be everyone's cup of coffee, but then again if you are not into long lashes that hold a curl and make your lases 100 times better than they really are, then yup, this is not for you.  I don't branch out and for good reason. If you have read some past posts than you would know my healthy obsession over this mascara. Actually, just to show you guys how much I love and recommend this product I am going to interest a photo of my backups of this mascara.....

No, I am not crazy and just to justify these backups. Ulta two weeks ago had a 40% off all L'Oreal products and  I already had one backup but decided to pick up two more on a really good deal.

Chanel Aqua Viatlumiere: Ah, I really want to love this product. However, for some reason I sometimes love it and other times, I hate it. The color matches me but on my really bad skin days, I stay away from this foundation. It has really good coverage, surprisingly. Its very lightweight because it is water based, it has buildable coverage, smells great, and I love the packaging. I m going to continue trying it out this week and see how I feel about it by the end of the week. My color is B30

Sinful Colors: This is my first sinful colors nail polish. I picked it up from Biglots for $1.50 a bargain alright, and I couldn't be more happy with this purchase. I have been looking for a baby blue nail polish for a while and I found it. This nail polish is long wearing on its own and I apply two-three coats for an opaque finish. The brush is small and not the best, but hey, I'll let that slide because the polish is overall great. I am going continue to wear this polish this week because I am loving it.

Thanks for reading!
xo A

Weekend Pamper...

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Weekend Pamper, Always! I am a big fan of masks. I have tried everything from professional facials, to the very popular and hyped glam glow masks, to your budget friendly drugstore masks, and to your at home natural facials. I think weather you have flawless skin or troubled skin, applying a mask once a week is highly important for a couple of reasons.

Masks help deep cleanse the skin beyond what your traditional daily cleanser can do. It cleanses the skin by removing toxins caused by pollution, grease and dirt found in your everyday environment. Now, if your like me and you have oil/acne prone skin than facials are and should always be your best friend. Facials help to reduce an overabundance of sebum, which is a natural substance that moisturizes and lubricates the skin. However, an overproduction of sebum can cause skin problems, including blackheads and acne.

1. My favorite mask to take care of  pores, acne and tame my oily skin is Origins Clear Improvement  Active Charcoal Mask. This mask is thick in consistency and after just 20 min. you will notice the mask doing its job. The mask helps to deep clean the pores and if you have acne that hasn't come to the surface yet, the active charcoal helps bring it to the surface and shrinks it.

2.A more budget friendly option that I have been enjoying is Formula 10.06 Deep down detox Ultra cleansing mask. This mask does the basic it deep cleans the pores, tightens and  firms the skin, and it helps with the overall texture of the skin.

3.The last and final mask that I recently picked up and have been obsessing over is Freeman Facial Polishing Mask: Charcoal and Black Sugar. Also, I guess I am not the only one swooning over this product since it won a 2013 Allure Best in Beauty Award. You can use this product as a mask or as a scrub. When I first tried this product, I applied it as a mask and although the texture is grainy and thick, it applied nicely all over the face. The smell is INCREDIBLE so if your not a big scent person than you might not enjoy this product because it is heavily scented. The second time I used it as a scrub and I was even more impressed it. I actually prefer using it as a scrub. As a scrub it isn't to harsh and helps to exfoliate the skin and brighten it. What makes this scrub unique was the more you scrub the product onto the skin it melts because of the sugar. Honestly, it is the best scrub that I have used hands down from both the drugstore and high-end. I will note that if you have sensitive skin this product is not for you because the sugar is not fine it is grainy and can be harsh on sensitive skins.

Thanks for reading!

xo A

Book of the month.....

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

I am a huge book worm. I know a lot of people out that are jumping on the audio book wagon. For me, there is just something about the experience of reading a good book the traditional hardcopy way that audio books cannot do. Quick background on my overall reading interests is that I don't branch out too far when it comes to book choices. I am really loving the dystopian/ post-apocalyptic novels such as hunger games, divergent, legend, switched, matched etc..... Sometimes I will pick up a random book but I don't stray too far. I only have one all time favorite author and it's Michael Connelly. I don't like all his books. However, I have read countless books by him. His Mickey Haller series that follows a defense attorney living in Los Angeles, California is what made me fall in love with the series and the author. The most widely known book by him is the Lincoln lawyer which became a huge motion picture and starred Mathew McConaughey.

My first book of the month is the Kill Order.... The Kill Order (Maze Runner, Prequel) (The Maze Runner Series)

The maze runner is a trilogy similar to the hunger games. It's a  young adult post-apocalyptic science fiction trilogy by James Dashner. Also, it is being made into a major motion picture that is really exciting.  The storyline of the trilogy is exciting, mysterious and ultimately, it makes you think ALOT. After the three books had been released, James Dashner published the prequel to the trilogy called the Kill Order. So pretty much the prequel explains all your unanswered questions and confusion and helps the reader understand what happened to earth before everyone was infected with the disease that makes them inhumane and barbaric. This disease that spread like wildfire is called sun flares. The prequel does a fantastic job in explaining how it happened and what led to the reason why a group of teens was chosen for a study to find a blueprint that might lead to a cure. I hope I am making sense but what I am trying to articulate is that these books are worth the read and the prequel is the cherry on top. I am only half way through but I am loving the storyline and thought Id share my book of the month with you guys.

Let me know your thoughts on these books whether you read them, heard of them, or thinking about picking them up.

Thanks for reading
xo A