Showing posts with label Clinique. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Clinique. Show all posts

Friday, July 22, 2016

Loving Right Now + Gift Card Giveaway

Happy Friday everyone! It's been one of those weeks I thought would never end and I am relieved that it's almost the weekend. Thank you to everyone who shared what you wanted to see on The Beauty Look Book blog in my last giveaway post. It's always great to hear feedback on what you've liked and also what you would like to read more about. There were a lot of requests for features on a wide range of topics and I am beyond flattered so many of you want to know what I think about well basically anything! Most popular requests were for higher end skincare (I did not realize you guys liked the skincare posts!), budget-friendly cosmetics, full skincare routine, current hair care routine, more hauls, favorites roundups, inside my purse posts, shoe features, tutorials, makeup storage, more travel (so happy many of you loved this), time management, exclusive promo events and videos!

Since reading your requests, I've started to pull items for a full summer skincare routine and hair care routine post. I do tend to test a lot of products on myself to review for you so my routine changes frequently - but I will pull my favorites and include items I've used up. A few notes:
  • Nordstrom Anniversary Sale hauls posted on the blog, makeup picks here and fashion and skincare items hauled here
  • Exclusive promo savings for readers via Space NK US here - my apologies for those who were not able to use the code on Oribe, after several e-mails to the team, they've fixed the code and it works on all Oribe items (full size and travel sizes)
  • Antica Farmacista is doing a special online promo code, enter code ANTICABLB at checkout for a mini body butter with any online order!
  • Summer bronzer edit posted here (many of you have been asking for this for weeks!)
  • On videos I am hoping to do some in the future!
  • Loving right now/favorites in this post here today!

Right now for skincare, hair care and the home, I'm loving the following:
  1. Chanel Fresh Body Cream is a summer go-to for body lotions. It smells lightweight and fresh and even though a tub is pricey. I use it sparingly but it has lasted a long time. It hydrates without feeling sticky and won't interfere with perfume. My wallet is crying at the thought of having to buy again but I think it is 100% worth the splurge.
  2. Clinique Take the Day Off Makeup Remover is what I use right now to remove mascara and eye makeup, its gentle but effective and doesn't feel greasy. You can find it in two sets for the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale in the Chubby Lash Set and Take the Day Off Set
  3. Antica Farmacista is a line I just discovered and I really don't know how this has passed my radar for so long, I received a few samples and the line is exquisite! My favorite item is the Cucumber and Lotus Flower Candle which is the perfect cooling relaxing scent for the home, I am going to need this one in all formats, detailed review next week - if you have any favorites from the line let me know! If you order online they're offering a free mini body butter with any order, use code ANTICABLB
  4. Shu Uemura Art of Hair Ample Angora Volumizing Mousse is something new to me, I will say up front I typically hate mousse products because they're usually sticky and make my hair hard to comb/brush, this one is really good though. I have naturally thick hair and find most volumizing products don't really add that much volume to my already thick hair (I have tried dozens of sprays, creams, lotions, shampoos etc.) This one combined with heat styling of the T3 PROi Dryer (best dryer ever, thanks RaeView for recommending to me!!) gives serious volume all the way through from roots to ends.
  5. La Mer The Tonic is a toner I alternate with the SK-II Clear Treatment Lotion, I like both but reach for the La Mer more these days to help remove impurities after cleansing and rebalance the skin. The formula has been a go-to for years and often times I try others in attempts to find a more affordable option, but this one never fails me.
  6. Kate Somerville Gentle Daily Wash is a favorite for every day multiple times a day. It's one of the few I can use frequently without it stripping my skin. I've tried and repurchased all her cleansers and this is the only one that won't irritate my skin on tender skin days. My brother has acne-prone skin that is even more sensitive than mine. I bought him this one to try and it's one of the few he says is gentle enough for his skin (he's in his early 20s). Also available in a larger 16 oz size with a pump and her Clinic Solutions Kit (I bought this for travel).

For makeup and fragrance:
  1. Hourglass Ambient Luminous Light Palette is nothing but pure love, it's a Nordstrom Beauty Exclusive for this year's Anniversary Sale and I think it is perfect. If you already own the palette from last holiday or the individual colors you can skip this one. Also there's a new marble palette that's coming out for holiday that you might want to wait for as previewed on @gossmakeupartist's Instagram (it looks dreamy but I think the colors are different!). My review + swatches in this post here.
  2. Chanel Aqua Glossimers for summer are sheered out glossimers new for summer. Review on all the shades in this post here. These are nice for an effortless wash of shine and a hint of color.
  3. Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche in Sugarcane is a perfect baby pink that covers the lip entirely, I also like Honeycomb which is a perfect nude, swatches + review of the neutrals in this formula can be found in this post here
  4. MAC Sunblessed Cremesheen (in the Nordstrom Sunblessed Kit) is a great pinky nude on me even though it looks more peachy in the tube. Swatched on my lips here.
  5. Charlotte Tilbury Hot Lips are almost too hot to handle. I adore her Matte Revolution formula and was thrilled to see more neutrals and brights launched in her Hot Lips Collection. All the shades purchased by me and swatched in this post.
  6. NARS Long Hot Summer Eyeshadow Palette (review soon) is an exclusive to NARS online and boutiques. This has great neutrals deep enough for medium to tan skintones. I'll review and swatch this soon.
  7. Tom Ford Soleil Blanc is the perfect white floral summer fragrance. I love it. Review here.
  8. YSL Glossy Stain 07 is a ripe juicy peach that has enough color to be more than a neutral but isn't too bright so it will suit neutral makeup lovers (also in the Nordstrom Rebel Nudes Set)
I'm hosting one more Nordstrom eGift Card Giveaway! I'm giving away 3 $100 USD eGift Cards to Nordstrom. Details as follows:
  • Open internationally
  • You must be 18 years old or older
  • Enter through widget
  • Entries will be collected through Sunday 7/24/2016 11:30 AM PST
  • Winners will be selected at random via the widget, emailed Sunday evening
a Rafflecopter giveaway
What are you loving right now? Did you haul anything good from the Nordstrom sale or any other places recently?

Press samples featured include Shu Uemura, Antica Farmacista, Bite Amuse Bouche.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Summer Date Night Beauty Favorites and Clutch Essentials

Summer is in full swing and I thought I'd put together a roundup of some date night beauty favorites for the season. I like to keep things on the makeup side soft and shimmery - pretty much the same as everyday kind of colors but add more on the eyes. A good neutral lip can give a nice polished look and will go with every color of outfit. A good classic red, coral or bright pink lip can add more oomph to your look - if you like a good bright classic, I think the best color and formula right now are from the Charlotte Tilbury Hot Lips and Chanel Rouge Coco Stylo lines. If you're a neutral lip lover, read on for my top picks.

First a note on clutches and pouches. Finding a good classic flat zip clutch is harder than you would think. For as long as I can remember I've been into the simple classic streamlined zip pouch, but being petite at 5'3" it's hard for me to find one that isn't too large. I'm forever looking for good classic options. The envelope style is pretty chic (one affordable option featured in this post here also eyeing this nude blush one here) but for some reason my heart belong to the flat zip ones.

My two most-used clutches are the Clare V Leopard Clutch (8" H x 11" W) and Truffle Privacy Clutch (6 1/2" H x 10 1/2" W). Small compact coin purses or card cases are also essentials for me. Any kind of textured leather makes wallets more sturdy and last longer, the Chanel classic quilted caviar is one of my favorites. The Tory Burch Robinson Coin Case is actually more like card case but also works as a more affordable option but still extremely well made and sturdy.

The best date night fragrances for me, some come in the tiny roller ball or small spritzer version to fit inside a clutch:
  • Diptyque L'Ombre Dans L'Eau which comes in a limited-edition travel size for summer. It's the fragrance version of Baies candle which I was surprised works well as perfume and has a mix of blackcurrant leaves and rose.
  • Viktor and Rolf Flowerbomb is the ultimate date night fragrance (travel spray was taken with me on my summer trip). For daytime I feel like it's more of a fall/winter fragrance, but I think it's amazing for summer nights. It's a hard one to describe but the notes are bergamot, tea, freesia, jasmine, orange blossom, orchid, rose, patchouli.
  • Chloé Eau de Parfume is another favorite, I have a small bottle, but you can find it in a travel size as well, it's another classic floral with notes of Pink Peony, Freesia, Lychee, Magnolia Flower, Lily of the Valley, Rose, Cedarwood, Amber, Honey.
  • For those who want something more unique, Byredo is always a good option. I bought the Discovery Set over the holiday which has a sampler mix of scents. It's been discontinued but the current version is the Floral Discovery 6 Piece Set which has Blanche, La Tulipe, Bal D'Afrique, Inflorescence, Flowerhead and Rose Of No Man's Land. I highly recommend the travel/discovery sets. It's a great way to try out different ones without having to splurge on the full size bottle. Another option is the Nécessaire de Voyage Eau de Parfum Travel Set which has Black Saffron and Blanche with a case.

For eyes I like shadow sticks because they're easy to apply and blend with the fingers. They're great for touch ups or if you're on the go and compact enough to carry in a clutch if you don't have time to go back home to fix your makeup for date.

I like a good shimmer for the eyes because it dresses them up a bit whether it's to add highlight or deepen with a golden smokey shade. Favorites shown and swatched below include:

For lips, I'm all about the soft pink and peachy shades. Current favorites shown below to mix and match or layer:

Shown above but not swatched:
Swatched below:

For pressed powders, the two I've been reaching for the most include the Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Powder in No. 20 and Clinique Stay Matte Sheer Pressed Powder in Stay Neutral. I've been on the hunt for a good retractable brush that's flat but not too small and I finally found one from Hakuhodo which is the H611 Portable Brush. It's soft and fluffy and super compact. If you don't need a powder to touch up, but want a good blotting paper to carry to absorb shine, the Tatcha Blotting Papers are the best ones I've tried (details on why they're the best in this review here).

That rounds up my summer date night beauty favorites! As always I'd love to hear what you love to wear and/or carry with you. If you have any favorite clutches or zip pouches - please share! One last note, shoes featured are from Ann Taylor.

Press samples featured include Tatcha Blotting Papers, Tom Ford Lip Color, Edward Bess Lip Definers, Truffle Clutch.

Monday, June 6, 2016

10 Mascaras Tried and Tested

I've been playing with quite a few mascaras over the past several months - some from early January. As I've worked my way through a few tubes I've made notes on thoughts for these and kept them to photograph next to each other so you can see the brush sizes and shapes. I have really straight relatively wimpy lashes that are often barely visible unless I have mascara on. I rarely ever wear anything on the bottom lashes because most brushes are too big to catch the tiny lashes. That combined with the fact that most mascaras smudge on me is another factor for why I don't wear anything on the lower lashes.

I have tested a few lash growth serums but am still undecided - I suspect that they require months of use to see results. I received a sample tube of Rapidlash earlier this year and as of today I've hit the 71 day mark of use. I have started to see some results but they are still on the subtle side. If you have ones you've tried that worked let me know.

Onto the mascaras I've tested out. Some are repeats of classic staples. I usually like waterproof versions because they are the ones that really don't smudge on me. However there are quite a few that leave the lashes looking and feeling a bit crunchy or that turn slightly greyish when they dry so I'm really picky with formulas. The image below is interactive so you can click on the icons below to shop the mascaras:

Shown above from bottom to the top:
  • Clinique High Impact Mascara ($16.50) is one of the mascaras I've used for the longest, I discovered it years ago and it's a great basic mascara to add definition and volume, it's not the most volumizing formula but the black is a true black color and doesn't smudge, flake or clump.
  • By Terry Terrybly Growth Booster Mascara ($48) is one I received as a gift with purchase at a counter a year ago, it's a formula that is very expensive but gives a really nice lush look to the lashes, it is supposed to have a growth formula inside it, I haven't noticed any visible growth from this one but it's not one I use daily, I like this because it doesn't flake, irritate or clump, it holds the curl and adds nice volume you can layer.
  • Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Mascara ($29.50) I love Dior mascaras but often times they just don't hold the curl for me, I gave this a try in hopes of finding one that does and was thrilled to find that it did for me. There were a lot of mixed reviews online - people either love it or hate it. I found it held the curl and did not smudge. I would have liked a bit more noticeable drama for me, you can layer it but on me it was easy to over-layer where you get that slightly cakey look. The fact that it held the curl and didn't smudge moved this into my thumbs up list.
  • Burberry Bold Lash ($29) is one I used a few years ago, loved it and repurchased once. I gave it another buy and have no regrets. This is best on me with one good coat. I apply at the base of the lashes and wiggle the tube to apply - it coats lashes evenly without clumping and it does not smudge on me.
  • Stila Huge Extreme Lash Mascara ($23) is one I tried in the Birchbox Beauty in Bloom Box (review here and it's still available). It far exceeded my expectations and I proceeded to search for it in stores. I could not find it anywhere near me so I ordered online. It's my new favorite formula although it is a bit hard to remove in the evening. I like this for the most drama and definition. It holds the curl and doesn't smudge and looks like a true black.
  • Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir Major Volume Mascara ($26) is one I had high hopes for because I really love the O!Mega Lash Mascara (that one has been my most repurchased formula over the past year). The Velvet Noir has an ultra deep color. It has a unique curved brush that dips in the middle of the wand to match the curve of the eye and get the corners. Application is really easy and it looks incredible. Unfortunately for me it does not hold the curl. Smudging is minimal but still happens a tiny bit on me with this one.
  • Marc Jacobs Feather Noir Mascara ($24) is an ultra skinny mascara - one of the tiniest wands I've ever seen! It's made mascara application on lower lashes possible for me. I have super sensitive eyes so it does tickle a little when I apply this but it has such a fine wand it will catch tiny lashes without touching the skin. It did not smudge on me when I used on lower lashes. I think this is a winner if you're one who is looking for a lower lash mascara.
  • Charlotte Tilbury Legendary Lashes Mascara ($32) I love all things Charlotte Tilbury so when this launched I had high hopes. The regular mascara from her line is ok in my experience. This one is like a face lift for the lashes. I rarely notice the smell of mascara but this one smells like it has a tiny bit of perfume and it smells amazingly fresh and pretty. I have mixed feelings on this one. I've put this to the test over the last month. It gives that faux mascara look by adding incredible volume and definition - it's really impressive. It holds the curl, doesn't flake and is non irritating. However half the time it smudges. The other half of the time it does not. Even when I have an extra powdered under-eye sometimes it still smudges. If this came in a waterproof formula I think it would be 100% flawless for me. Right now it's 50/50 on the smudge factor.
  • Chanel Le Volume Mascara ($32) is a classic. I like the regular black version but try to buy the plum shades when they launch because they are often limited-edition. There are two formulas the regular Le Volume and Le Volume Waterproof. I like both but for me waterproof is the way to go especially in humid warmer months. It adds volume and doesn't smudge.
  • MustaeV Maxi Lash Volume Mascara ($18) is one of the deepest black mascaras I've tried. It has a super skinny wand so it's easy to grab all the lashes - even the ones around the edges. I was really impressed how well it stayed put - no smudging for me on all testing occasions. It's not the most volumizing for me because I have such wimpy lashes but it's a good everyday kind of mascara that never clumps on me and I love the true black color.
Another view of the mascaras, different angle:

So which one is my favorite? Right now it's a three-way tie between the Stila Huge Extreme Lash Mascara, the By Terry Terrybly Mascara and Chanel Le Volume. The Charlotte Tilbury Legendary Lashes is almost perfect - it smudges on me half the time I wear it.

If you're looking for a new mascara I hope you found this roundup helpful! As always - I'd love to hear about your recommendations! At this time I don't use a base/primer or a top coat for the lashes. I know several of you have recommended the Clarins Double Fix as a way to prevent smudging. I still have yet to try it but just ordered it so will let you know how it works. I've played with a few false lashes on occasion but find them too time consuming to apply on a daily basis - I know it just takes practice to get used to but it's something I just haven't gotten into yet.

If you have any tips, tricks or advice on lash growth serums I'm all ears!

Press samples featured include the Charlotte Tilbury, MustaeV, RapidLash. Gifted item includes the By Terry Mascara.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Clinique x Nordstrom Bonus Gift with Purchase - May 2016

There's a Clinique Bonus Gift with Purchase going on right now at Nordstrom through the end of the month which has some really cute items. With any $27 Clinique purchase you can get a 7 piece gift set that includes your pick of one Beyond Perfecting Foundation and Concealer shade in Alabaster, Ivory, Neutral or Nutty (note you have to enter in a code at checkout).

There are also a few step up gift options - if you spend $55 a full-sized skincare product will be added to your cart online (or in store). When I bought mine in store last week there was the 7-Day Scrub Option available online and in stores. Right now it looks like they have the full size Moisture Surge as the step up online. (Options may also vary in store.)

Here's what you get in the gift with $27 purchase:

Foaming Face Sonic Soap (1 fl oz/30 ml)
High Impact Mascara in Black (0.14 oz/3.5 ml)
Moisture Surge Extended Thirst Relief (0.5 oz/15 ml)
Clinique Color Compact with two mini eyeshadows in Sunset Glow
Morning Java + Fig Blush
Long Last Soft Matte Lipstick in Petal (0.12 oz/3.6 g)
Beyond Perfecting Foundation + Concealer (0.17 fl oz/5 ml) - pick 1 of 4 shades

Swatches of the gift colors I picked out, Ivory is the match for me:

If you order online, be sure to enter one of four codes at checkout for the Beyond Perfecting Foundation + Concealer shades, I swatched the four gift options at the counter in case you can't get to one in person, I hope this helps as an online guide for you:

For Alabaster enter code LIGHT at checkout
For Ivory enter code LTMED at checkout
For Neutral enter code MED at checkout
For Nutty enter code DEEP at checkout

I re-stocked up on a few staples and took advantage of the step up to pick up some items I had been wanting to try for a while. The color pop items have been on my radar for a long time but I always forget to try them in store. I made a list before I went so I would not forget this round. What I ended up picking up:
  • Lid Pop Eyeshadow in Cream Pop is one of the prettiest golden nude shimmers, it has a unique cream to powder kind of finish that adheres well to the lids but doesn't make them look dry
  • Cheek Pop Blush in Nude Pop has also been on my list for ages, it's a good neutral warm nude that adds a bit of natural color without looking too dark, it has a very soft sheen
  • Pop Lip Color + Primer in Nude Pop and Beige Pop (yes, more neutrals!) are great wearable neutrals that add a natural hint of color and shine, I like that they didn't dry out my lips and had no detectable taste or scent, there are a lot of other colors to choose from, I picked to to test out and really like the formula, Clinique also has two other formulas in the Pop Glaze Sheer and Pop Lacquers - I swatched a few briefly at the counter but decided to think about them
  • Stay-Matte Sheer Pressed Powder (Oil Free) in Stay Neutral is something I used a long time ago but never repurchased, it's a very natural matte powder that doesn't look cakey and is good for touch ups, I like the price point too which I find reasonable for a good quality powder
  • High Impact Mascara in Black is also one of my oldie but goodie mascaras, there are so many different options from other brands, I often forget about my tried and true (do note if you haven't tried this there is a mini in the gift with purchase)
  • Take the Day Off Makeup Remover is one of the most gentle makeup removers that will remove eye makeup without stinging my super sensitive eyes (the one I have shown is the 4.2 fl oz size), sometimes I can rub my eyes a bit too hard because waterproof mascara can be hard to remove, this one won't sting, I just noticed that they now carry a Take the Day Off Cleansing Balm which has really good reviews online, let me know if you've tried this and you think it's worth a go
  • Chubby Stick Sculpting Highlighter in Hefty Highlight has been on my wishlist for forever and I have gone back and forth trying to decide whether or not to buy it. It's a very pale almost white shimmer straight out of the tube, but it blends out to a very natural glowy dewy sheen. I tested it out over the weekend and it held up very well, didn't get greasy as the day progressed and did not emphasize pores. I like that it's a twist up which makes it very easy to use and blend. I hope that Clinique makes more colors in this because I think the formula is great.


Swatches of the two lip items I picked up plus the gift lipstick (I'm wearing the gift with purchase Beyond Perfecting Foundation + Concealer in Ivory in the photos below). Bare Pop has some visible shimmer while Nude Pop is more creamy:

If you're ordering online don't forget you need to enter the shade code for the Beyond Perfecting Foundation + Concealer at checkout for it to be added to your cart, code options shown below. After swatching in store I thought Neutral would be my match but it was visibly darker than my skintone when I dabbed along my jawline. Ivory looks light but on my face it's almost an exact match. Since it's full coverage you do need to find the best match possible. I was impressed with the coverage - it covered all my blemish scars, dark spots and under eye circles without looking cakey or flat (just make sure you blend). Ivory is the tiniest bit too pink but I tested it out on several days and as long as I blended it onto the neckline it matched pretty well.

For Alabaster enter code LIGHT at checkout
For Ivory enter code LTMED at checkout
For Neutral enter code MED at checkout
For Nutty enter code DEEP at checkout

Do you have any Clinique favorites? I find the line has a lot of great staples! The Bonus Gift with Purchase is good with any Clinique purchase of $27+, online and in stores at Nordstrom while supplies last.

Many thanks to Nordstrom for sponsoring this post. As always all opinions my own, for more information you can refer to my Disclosures.

Monday, August 17, 2015

On My Radar / New in Beauty

I hope everyone had a great weekend! We had a hot weekend here in Southern California - it was nice to have lots of sunny weather but I do hope it will cool down soon. A few new items on my beauty radar right now:
  1. Louboutin Beauté is launching 38 shades of lipstick in September retailing at $90 each. These are encased in a heavy duty metal cases that look like mini jeweled ornaments. There will be three formulas in Silky Satin, Sheer Voile and Velvet Matte. All will come encased in a gold base and cap except three Rouge Louboutin shades (one in each formula) which comes in a solid black metal case.
  2. Lipstick Queen has six new shades of a Cupid Strikes Lip Pencil ($22 each). These are a lipliner and lipstick in one kind of product. I have my eye on the colors in Golden Arrow and Apollo - they look really pretty.
  3. Clinique for Men launched a new Sonic System Deep Cleansing Brush ($89.50). My husband has been using my Clarisonic for a while (he has his own brush heads) but I'm glad to see some lines launching ones for men's skin. Reports indicate the brushes are slightly different for men's facial hair. This one has a nice sleek masculine look to it.
  4. Clarisonic has a men's tool in the new Alpha Fit Cleansing System for Men ($189). This one is quite a bit more pricey compared to the Clinique. I ordered this already a few weeks ago - the video demonstrated how how versatile it is. My husband likes the look - it has a good design and compact look. He's testing it right now.
  5. Tom Ford Beauty has launched 13 new shades of Lip Color (in the full size, $52 each). I have my eye on so many colors, in particular Guilty Pleasure, So Vain and Lilac. Some swatches of the colors on the Tom Ford Forum via
  6. Allure and Butter London teamed up to create a collection of 6 nail lacquers ($15 each). The colors include Disco Nap, I'm On the List, It's Vintage, Lust or Must?, Nude Stilettos and Statement Piece.
  7. Bobbi Brown has a small Greige Collection with a Eye Palette, two Nail Polishes and two Long-Wear Cream Shadow Sticks. I need to investigate the eyeshadows.
  8. Frederic Malle now carries the travel sized vials individually. They are expensive when you break down the price per ounce but it's still a nice way to buy a smaller size instead of splurging on the full size bottle if you're unsure. My go-to scent is Carnal Flower. I have my eye on Eau de Magnolia, Lipstick Rose and Dries Van Noten.
  9. and 10. Last but not least, Burberry Beauty has launched at! The full makeup line is available along with some new releases. Sephora has an exclusive Burberry Beauty Box (VIB Rouge exclusive). Other new items include the Kisses Lip Gloss, First Kiss Glossy Lip Balm, Face Contour Pen for Face & Eyes and a new 3-Piece Nail Color Set for Fall.
What's on your beauty radar this week?

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

On My Radar / New in Beauty

Happy Wednesday everyone! Here are some new releases that are on my beauty radar this week.

1 / Dior has released a Peter Philips Collection on inspired by the Cruise 2015 show. The two nail polishes in NYC Peach 130 and BKLYN Pink 560 caught my eye along with the Diorette Addict 179 Lipstick. I ordered both nail polishes and will share swatches as soon as they arrive.

2 / With warm weather and sun I'm on the hunt for a good sport sunscreen. Most sunscreens irritate my skin with the exception of Chanel UV Essentiel SPF 50 and Clarins (the one I use has been discontinued), but they aren't sweat proof for outdoor sports and are prone to stinging the eyes with the tiniest bit of sweat. I have my eye on the Jack Black Sun Guard SPF 45 (which is supposed to be water resistant), Clinique Broad Spectrum SPF 50 Sunscreen Face Cream and First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair® Pure Mineral Sunscreen Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 40. Do you have any recs for a good sport sunscreen for sensitive skin?

3 / Marc Jacobs Beauty has released 18 shades of Enamored Hi-Shine Lip Lacquer which have replaced their original Sheer and Full Lip Vinyls. I've been playing with these for a few weeks now. First impressions = thumbs up, they give the lips a smooth cushiony feel. I will have swatches and the full review next week.

4 / L'Occitane has launched their Pivoine Sublime Tinted Lip Balms which are inspired by the peonies sustainably grown by Jean-Luc Rivière in the foothills of the Vercors Mountains of Provence. Each tinted lip balm is enriched with shea butter and three of them have a colored tint. Review soon!

5 / Burberry Beauty has six shades of Lip & Cheek Blooms. I have Rose, Orange Blossom and Poppy shown above which were sent to me for review. I haven't had a chance to play with them yet but the colors look really pretty in the pots.

6 / Charlotte Tilbury has launched her Eyes to Mesmerise Cream Shadows in the US. I have high hopes for these but haven't ordered any of the colors. I'm trying to narrow down my picks to 2 or 3 colors! If you've tried these what did you think? These are available now at Net-A-Porter, Nordstrom, Beautylish, and Charlotte Tilbury.

7 / Givenchy has a new lipstick called Le Rouge-À-Porter. There's something striking about the long sleek silver tube that makes these look incredible. I'm trying to resist the urge to order sight unseen as online stock swatches make it difficult to see what the colors really look like.

8 / Last but not least, Chanel Les Beiges has started to trickle in. I saw it in store at Saks Fifth Avenue, I still haven't had a chance to properly play with the summer collection but I have high hopes for the nude nail polishes. It's also online now:

What's on your beauty radar this week?

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

On My Radar / New In Beauty

Some new items on my radar this week that have popped up. I'm still working my way through photographing and swatching items from Marc Jacobs Beauty, Hourglass, Burberry, Chanel and Charlotte Tilbury. There's not enough hours in the day for all the fun stuff. As usual I'd love to hear what's on your beauty radar right now. I'm in the process of testing out some eye creams (sample packets and a few I've bought) - if you have any favorite eye creams I'd love to hear your recs in the comments.

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  1. NARS will release six shades of Dual-Intensity Blush next week at online at Sephora, NARS Cosmetics and NARS Boutiques on March 4th and at all other locations April 1st. As someone who is obsessed with the Dual-Intensity Eyeshadows, I'm beyond excited for these.
  2. Chanel has some new items in skincare. The entire Le Blanc line has been reformulated so if you have some staples I recommend you check your counter as soon as possible to see if they have the older formulas to stock up. I just ran out of my go-to Estee Lauder toner so I decided to give the Le Blanc Brightening Moisturizing Lotion a try. I'll have a more detailed report once I give it a test drive. 
  3. Another new item from Chanel is the Hydra Beauty Micro Serum. From what I've heard, it will not replace the current Hydra Beauty Serum, but is simply an addition to the line for more moisture. I bought the Micro Serum yesterday and can't wait to try it out.
  4. The Bite Beauty Butter Cream Lipsticks are now available for everyone to purchase (no longer a VIB/VIB Rouge exclusive). There are eight shades of nudes and mauves which are super tempting. Given the fact that I have acquired a number of Chanel Rouge Cocos, Dior Glosses and Marc Jacobs Lipsticks buying another lipstick just seems silly. But many of you keep raving about Bite so I might check out 1 or 2.
  5. Dior has three new Gel-Shine Vernis Nail Lacquers launched with the release of the lip glosses.  The three colors are Rose, Pink and Corail. I'll have swatches for you next week.
  6. Bobbi Brown has new Cheek Palettes with different color themes in Berry, Pink and Calypso. These are so stunning and well pigmented. I haven't splurged yet but these are on my radar.
  7. Tatcha's latest is the Indigo Soothing Rice Enzyme Powder for sensitive skin. It's also available in a travel size. I'm a huge fan of the regular version (reviewed here) and this new one looks promising for days that my skin is experiencing extra sensitivity.
  8. Burberry has reformulated all of their shadows. In addition to their powder shadows, there is another new formula called Wet & Dry Glow Shadows in Optic White, Gold Pearl, Nude and Shell which are mind blowingly gorgeous. I'm working on swatches this week.
  9. Clinique has two Chubby Sticks out. There is a Chubby Stick Sculpting Highlight and Chubby Stick Sculpting Contour. I like the look of the packaging and they look like they are really easy to use but reviews are mixed. Have you tried these? I'd love to hear your thoughts.
What's on your beauty radar this week?

Monday, January 26, 2015

On My Radar

Soft washes of neutral colors and getting organized are on my mind this week.

Deborah Lippman Whisper Collection (1) has four shades of pale pastels that look so dreamy. The names are absolute perfection with Chantilly Lace (pink), Misty Morning (grey), Dreamers Do (mauve), Fine Romance (nude).

The spring releases from Marc Jacobs Beauty look amazing. Three new #Instamarc Light Filtering Contour Powders (2) have been released to sculpt, highlight and add definition. Shades include Dream Filter (soft pink/medium bronze), Hi Fi Filter (warm peach/ deep bronze) and Mirage Filter (light gold/ light bronze).

There are new lipstick formulas as well from Marc Jacobs Beauty. There is a long-wear bold color formula called Le Marc Lip Creme and New Nudes Sheer Lip Gel (4).

NARS Spring 2015 is all about soft nudes (5). I have so many things sitting in my cart right now. I'm trying to resist the urge to order sight unseen since nudes can be tricky. They look so beautiful, especially the Guyane and Vent Salé Lip Glosses, Reckless Blush, Valhalla Eyeshadow and Porto Venere Eye Paint.

I've been accumulating quite a few flat pouches and clutches but don't have a way to store them properly. I've been propping them vertically next to each other. This GLAMdivide (6) lucite box by Glamboxes looks like it could be the perfect solution for me. (How do you store your slim clutches and flat pouches? I'm open for all ideas!)

New highlighting and contouring powders in different colors are popping up. Clinique Sculptionary Cheek Contouring Palettes (6) come in four shades: Defining Nudes, Berries, Roses and Nectars. Bobbi Brown Brightening Bricks (7) now come in four colors too including Coral, Pastel Pink, Pink and Cranberry.

Last but not least, if you're looking for a good chic document case, Truffle has a promo on their Clarity Document Cases for 25% off through Sunday 2/1 with code TIDY2015 at checkout.

What's on your radar this week?

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

On My Radar | New in Beauty and Deals of the Week

New items on my radar in the beauty world:
  • Dior Beauty has launched some new fall products for eyes, lips and nails:
    • 5 Couleurs Eyeshadow Palette ($60) comes in five new shades in Bar 56, Carre Bleu 276, Pied De Poule 96, Trafalgar 876, Tutu 846
    • Rouge Dior Lipstick ($35) is available in five new colors with Carre D'Or 135, Bar 317, Rose Tutu 354, Rouge Massai 869 and Pied-de-Poule 977
    • Vernis Gel-Shine Nail Lacquer ($25) comes in four new cream finish shades in Pied de Poule 206, Rose Tutu 254, Bar 902 and Carre Bleu 769
  • Hourglass 1.5mm Mechanical Gel Eyeliner ($16 for single, $45 for set of 3) is the latest innovation from Hourglass with the thinnest waterproof gel liner that offers precision accuracy with a single stroke, available now at, at Sephora July 29, all other counters August 15
  • L'Occitane Frisson Verbena Collection ($12 to $55) has a range of fresh green and citrus body products perfect for summer, I'm in love with the Frisson Verbena Fresh Shower Gel and Hand Cream (thoughts on these soon)
  • Net-A-Porter Beautified Natural Nomad Pouch ($50) with Tata Harper Fortifying Body Oil and Lotion, Illia Sway Multistick, RGB Nail Polish, Remover Pad and Cuticle Oil, Rahua Volume Spray, Joya's Composition No. 1 Perfume, LAFCO Hand Lotion
  • YSL Volupté Sheer Candy ($34) has launched in four new shades in Belle Cannelle #14, Rose Candy #15, Cherise Desir #16 and Fraise Ganache #17

Some deals and codes that have come through my inbox recently:
  • Benefit Cosmetics - Free US Standard Shipping on any order with code SUNSHIP
  • Bloomingdales - bRejuvinated Beauty Event Gift with Purchase offers (over 60 offers) through July 28 or while supplies last, plus 4 free beauty samples with any online order
  • Clinique - Three free summer saver minis Moisture Surge Face Spray, 7 Day Scrub Rinse-Off, Acne Solutions Clinical Clearing Gel with any online Clinique purchase, 7/23 – 7/24 or while supplies last
  • L'Occitane - 12 Hour Beauty Break sale, you have 12 hours to shop for select products up to 50% off, online only July 23rd 10:00 AM EST to 10:00 PM EST
    • L'Occitane code offerings while supplies last:
      • Receive 3 Hand Creams + Adorable Pouch with any $25 Purchase with code SHEAHANDS, valid through 7/29
      • Free 50ml Shea Cleansing Milk with any $30 Purchase with code REFRESH, valid through 7/29
      • Free Angelica skincare duo of hydrating Toner and Cleansing gel with $45 purchase, code ANGELICA, valid through 7/29
  • Marc Jacobs Beauty - Free shipping on orders $50+, free mini Highliner in Blacquer with any $75+ order with code MINI, while supplies last
  • Macy's - Over 150 online only gift with purchase deals from Clinique, Origins, Elizabeth Arden, Laura Mercier
  • Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Gift With Purchase over 70 gifts with purchases available for the sale from Caudalie, YSL, Jo Malone, Jouer, Guerlain, Cle de Peau, Lancome, Estee Lauder, Chantecaille and more
  • Sephora - Online Limited Beauty Insider Offers with $25+ orders (one code per order) while supplies last:
    • Ole Henriksen's 3 Little Wonders 7-Day Sampler with code WONDERS
    • Choose 1 of 3 Lip Minis from Too Faced, NARS or Sephora Collection with code LIPMINI
    • Fresh Soy Conditioning Eye Makeup Remover with code FRESHSOY
    • Deluxe sample of Ole Henriksen Ultimate Lift Eye Gel with code EYELIFT
    • Benefit Cosmetics They're Real Push-Up Liner 30-day Sample with code PUSHUP
    • Choose 1 of 3 Deluxe Sized Self-Tanners from Vita Liberata, St. Tropez, bareMinerals with code BRONZED
    • Early Access sample of Josie Maran Argan Black Oil Mascara Deluxe Sample for VIBs/Rouge, use code VIBJOSIE
  • Shu Uemura USA - A Midsummer's Night Sample Set with any $50+ order, includes Tsuya Radiance Essense, Classic Cleansing Oil (20 ml), Anti-Oxi Deluxe Cleansing Oil (20 ml), Stage Performer Instant Glow (10 ml), Mini PK70C Gloss, use code UNWIND
If you have any good deals or codes, please share in the comments :)

P.S. Don't forget to enter my Fresh Sugar Tulip Giveaway! There are up to four ways to enter and the entry period is almost up. I'll be selecting the winner over the weekend and announce who won next week.

Monday, June 30, 2014

Travel / Trial Sized Beauty - Skincare for Face and Body

Since my last trip in April I've been on the hunt for more mini-sized beauty items for travel and testing. One area I always neglect in packing is skincare for face and body. I almost never check in luggage so I'm limited to one carry-on and therefore subject to the one quart-size bag rule for liquids. Squeezing in all the items into one bag is a challenge for me but I've learned that skipping out on good skincare usually results in ruined skin that takes weeks to recover (at least for me). This time I took extra care to plan in advance and did quite a bit of research in the weeks leading up to the trip looking for good travel-sized minis. This is what I brought with me, all of which fit perfectly into one quart sized bag. I love minis for skincare anyways as a way to test out new items without having to splurge on the full size.

  • SK-II Facial Treatment Cleanser ($70 for full size) was part of a mini gift with purchase from Saks, I frequently check the Special Offers page before stocking up on the full size, this is one of my favorite face cleansers, when I don't have minis of my regular face cleansers, I squeeze some into a little disposable container
  • Caudalie Cleansing Water (50 ml/1.69 fl oz) the mini size is part of The Favorites Set ($32) which I've been a huge fan of, this is a gentle makeup remover that makes the skin feel clean and moisturized (FYI there is a Caudalie GWP online for a Deluxe Size Divine Oil with $50+ purchases using code DIVINE through July 2nd)
  • MAC Cleanse Off Oil / Tranquil ($10 for 30 ml/1.0 fl oz) is one of the mini to-go sizes for MAC skincare, I bought this to test out since I've been a huge fan of the regular Cleanse Off Oil, I find the Tranquil version to be more gentle with a moisturizing feel, I prefer the Regular version to remove makeup before cleansing (with long-wear makeup, I've found I need a few extra steps to remove every trace of primer, concealer, foundation, powder and blush)
  • Chanel Gentle Biphase Eye Makeup Remover ($34 for the full size) is a mini I stock up on with gift with purchases during Chanel events, it's the best I've tried (I favor it over Lancome) that removes waterproof mascara and long-wear eyeliners without stinging the eyes
  • Giorgio Armani Regenessence 3.R Pre-Regenerative and Retexturizing Lotion ($53 for the full size) is my current toner of choice, it makes the skin feel really and soft and helps to smooth out the surface before serums or moisturizers, I got the mini size with a Neiman Marcus gift with purchase event and saved the bottle, I refill it with the full size when I go on trips or weekend getaways

  • Caudalie Divine Oil ($9 for 15 ml/.05 fl oz) is a must-have for me, I use it almost daily for the legs and arms, I love how this one smells refreshing and especially how it absorbs into the skin quickly, it's often available in value sets like this Sephora Summer Crushes set and I've seen it in seasonal duos, I bought my first Divine Oil because my friend said, "at $9 you won't be crushed if you don't like it, but you will, you need to try it, it's amazing" - she was right, I'm rarely without this one (it's often in my purse)
  • Caudalie Divine Legs (25 ml/0.84 fl oz) in the mini size is usually part of yet more value deal sets, there's one for $32 that comes with a 50 ml Divine Oil + 25 ml Divine Legs, I have super sensitive skin that often reacts to tanning and bronzing products, although this one from Caudalie doesn't tan, it does give a nice bronzed leg effect that I found very natural, since there were mixed reviews on Sephora, I thought getting the set with the mini was good to try, I tested the Divine Legs this past weekend rubbing quickly into the legs after moisturizing with a light layer of the Divine Oil, it dried quickly but I was able to work it in quickly before it set, I wore a black dress and skirt over the past few days so I didn't notice any transfer to clothing, I'll have to test this one out a few more times but I liked it and didn't experience any irritation
  • Caudalie Hand and Nail Cream (30 ml/1 fl oz) is another lovely item from The Favorites Set, I have a number of tried and true favorite hand creams, I picked this one because of the refreshing lightweight scent and compact size
  • Tatcha Indigo Soothing Silk Body Butter (30 ml) is a new addition to Tatcha's Travel Sized beauty, if you're on their mailing list you might recognize this as one of the past gift with purchases they offered (they have special promo codes), this one will this one will be available for purchase mid to late July, you can read my full review here, some might wonder if I brought a body oil with me, did I really need to bring a body lotion as well? I could have gotten away with bringing just one, but I like the Tatcha for it's soothing qualities, sometimes my skin acts up and gets itchy from being dry, the Tatcha Indigo line works wonders for hydration and soothing

  • Chanel Sublimage La Creme Texture Fine ($390 for the full size 1.7 oz) is one of the most amazing face moisturizers I've tried and also one of my biggest splurges, it hydrates the skin and keeps it looking smooth and clear, there are often minis available with gift with purchases, sometimes counters have samples to give out (they are more friendly with samples if you make a decent sized purchase) 
  • Ole Henriksen Truth Serum ($15 for 0.5 fl oz/15 ml) is one of my favorite serums, I love the small travel/trial size which is available at a good price, it's often part of deal sets as well such as The Works, the best part is the mini packaging comes with a super convenient pump dispenser making it easy to use
  • Tatcha Camellia Beauty Oil ($33 for 10 ml) is the cutest mini-sized beauty oil, it's the perfect size to test out in case you're hesitant about oils in general (I am), when I travel, my skin tends to dry out a bit, I used this at night before bed to smooth the skin and give it an extra boost of hydration over night, on regular days, I use the oil for day 1-2x per week alternating with my regular serum/moisturizer routine, it gives the skin a super hydrated refreshed feel without feeling heavy (more thoughts on this one here)
  • Tatcha Ageless Revitalizing Eye Cream ($29 for 3 ml) came with a Barneys gift bag event offer, I love testing out mini eye creams and this one is super tiny which was good to fit into the corners of my quart sized bag, I found this one to be a bit heavy for my needs, it's a rich creamy eye treatment I found good for overnight hydration (applied in small doses) but for everyday it will probably be too heavy for my skin type, this is the beauty of minis, you can test items to see how they work for you before committing to the full size

  • Urban Decay All Nighter Makeup Setting Spray ($14 for 30 ml/1.0 fl oz) has had so many raves on Sephora so I made a quick stop to one of the stores during my trip and picked one up. It's described as a weightless spray that keeps your makeup looking fresh for up to 16 hours. I attended a wedding over the weekend in semi-humid weather and thought this would be the perfect time to test something like this. Most of the wedding was indoors and it didn't last 16 hours so I couldn't really test this to see if it lived up to its claims. I did like the lightweight feeling, it spritzes a super fine layer of mist over the face evenly (huge plus for me) and it kept my makeup looking fresh and melt-free for around 7 hours.
  • Clinique Color Correcting Superprimer ($27 for 1 fl oz, review here) was my primer of choice for the weekend for its smoothing properties, you can see the difference in the texture of the skin once applied, it works well under liquid foundations as well
  • Origins Clear Improvement Mask Pods ($8 for 4 one-time use pods) is another item I picked up during my trip, I loved the concept of the one-time use pods and am usually skeptical about pore-cleansing masks since most usually are either too strong and sting the skin or so gentle it feels like nothing (my favorite from MAC was discontinued). I used one pod during my trip and was really impressed with how well this cleansed and tightened the skin, after one use pores were visibly smaller, there is a slight tingly feeling but it did not irritate or sting the skin, based on the reviews I've read and my experience with one pod, this one shows a lot of promise
All the liquid/gel items in my zip-loc quart size bag - yes, they all fit including a mini perfume and bottle of Chanel foundation :)

Overall this trip I felt like I packed all the essentials (and then some) for skin care face and body. I did skip bringing shampoo, conditioner and shower gels and relied on what was at the hotel (I was really happy that they had Neutrogena). I ended up using everything I brought with me along with the two items I purchased on the trip at Sephora. I don't travel often so it's taken a few tries for me to get the right mix of products while I'm away from home. I think this time I've finally found my perfect mix of items for skincare. (If you want to know what makeup I brought with me let me know in the comments below, otherwise you can see what I carried with me on previous trips by clicking on the Travel tag.)

Do you have any favorite travel sized beauty items? What items did you end up loving from mini-testing that made you buy the full size? Any new discoveries lately? Also if you ended up hating something from testing out a mini, I'd love to hear about your experiences.

Some items in this post were provided for review consideration and some minis were acquired from various gift with purchase events. Most items were purchased by me. For more information please refer to my Disclosures.


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