Showing posts with label DryBar. Show all posts
Showing posts with label DryBar. Show all posts

Sunday, October 5, 2014

The Beauty Look Book Hair Care Loves


I get a lot of questions about my hair care, both online and in person. Many like the smooth glossy texture, and I usually get comments that I must have really good genes when it comes to hair, but what most people don't understand is that my hair actually takes a lot of work. I've always had super thick unruly hair. Frizz has always been my biggest problem, when I was in high school and early college days, my hair was so thick, fitting a rubber band around it twice to pull it back was always a stretch (I broke quite a few that snapped because my hair was so thick). Color wise, my hair has a natural subtle ombre effect depending on lighting conditions and season (it gets lighter in the summer). It's basically black but I have natural red highlights are sometimes look really bright, especially on the ends. The lighter color can sometimes make it look dry on the ends even though I've never color-treated my hair.

In high school and early college days, my friends told me "you need to try blowdrying your hair, it will change your life." I went through several hair dryers and straighteners, none of which did anything for me (mainly Conair, T3, and Revlon). I used to be a regular reader on Makeupalley and back in the early 2000's the message board recommendations and product reviews were a lifesaver.

The second biggest issue I've had with hair is sensitive scalp. I don't have dry scalp issues but many shampoos and conditioners I've tried end up drying up my scalp or leave heavy residue which is difficult to rinse out properly.

Over the past decade, thanks to my stylist recommendations, trial and error along with blog recommendations, I've discovered quite a few hair products that I've fallen in love with. Having longer thick hair means I tend to go through product fairly quickly. I've been meaning to do a hair-care loves post for quite some time, but given that I use up items fast and am constantly testing new items, they don't always last long enough for me to get pictures. I thought a summary of my tried and true might be helpful.


Phyto's Phytojoba Shampoo (1) is hands down my Number 1 holy grail shampoo. It has the most amazing scent of jojoba with coconut but isn't overly sweet or overpowering. It's designed for dry and unruly hair and lathers up into this amazing foam. It's rich enough for my hair that it treats dryer scalps while moisturizes the hair but doesn't weigh it down. The only reason why I don't buy this more frequently is because it has a very fluid texture which is easy to over pour. It is also something I find I go through very quickly (which gets expensive). Performance-wise it's my all time favorite.

A good everyday shampoo and conditioning duo is Drybar's Happy Hour Blowout Shampoo and Happy Hour Weightless Conditioner (2). Both have really good scents and give me bouncy shiny hair. The conditioner is one of the few I've tried that is truly weightless but still gives the hair that extra conditioning you need. It's also good to use daily which I find rare with most conditioners.

Kérastase has been on my radar for a long time but they have so many options I found it a bit overwhelming to choose one. I recently ordered the Cristalliste Bain Cristal Shampoo Thick (4), Lait Cristal Conditioner (5) and Volumifique Bain Volumifique Shampoo (6) and have been really impressed. The Cristalliste line is designed for long thick hair, I find both the shampoo and conditioner work really well to give hair a clean smooth look without weighing it down. They clean the hair really well and almost feel like a rebalancing kind of shampoo/conditioner. Both lather nicely and smell amazing as well. The Volumifique Shampoo is designed to give volume and lightness. For me I haven't seen any volumizing effects but it works wonders in terms of making it feel lightweight and frizz free. With the Kerastase items I've tried I can let my hair air dry naturally and not worry about frizz.

Oribe is another favorite line of mine, I've tried a number of the sample packets of their hair care and my favorite is the Shine Shampoo and Conditioner (16). When I use Oribe, I tend to use it every 2-3 days, alternating with a different everyday shampoo, mainly because of the high price points, but the items in the line are extremely good and worth every penny. The Shine line gives lush glossy hair with a super smooth finish.


For hair treatments, I usually blow dry and straighten my hair. I like to use treatments that are multi-functional for both pre-heat treating and finishing. A staple in my weekly hair routine is Moroccanoil's Treatment (14). It gives the hair a smooth texture that helps keep moisture in with blowdrying, it's also good as a finishing product to smooth ends. A little goes a long way and the bottle will last you a long time. Drybar's The Chaser (13) shine pomade is a must-have for me in terms of styling/shine products. It's also good for a pre-heat treatment or post-styling product. There's nothing like this that gives a lightweight shine that lasts all day without making the hair greasy or heavy looking.

Edward Bess recently launched his Hair Hero (11) on QVC. It's my do-everything kind of hair product. It smooths the hair, adds texture and adds shine. You can read the full review here.

Dry shampoos have a lot of appeal in terms of time saving properties and styling. I haven't found one that I could use yet that didn't leave my hair looking flat, dusty looking or crunchy. Oribe's Dry Texturizing Spray (12) is a dry shampoo alternative which I find works the best for adding texture and volume to the roots or absorb oil. I almost always wash my hair everyday, but on mornings when I am rushed and need to skip 1 day, this works wonders as a hair refresher.

Having a good shampoo and conditioner routine (along with a well-balanced diet) should be sufficient to keep your hair healthy and well moisturized but sometimes I do need a weekly mask treatment. The Phytojoba Intense Hydrating Mask (15) is my favorite for dry weather and winter months to give my hair that extra boost it needs.


For tools, I've been a loyal to Solano Hair Dryers for years. I went through two over the past 13 years and when I needed to a replacement, I decided to try the Drybar Buttercup Blow Dryer (3). My husband bought this for me while we were at Sephora because he thought the packaging was fun (lol). After having such good experiences with the Drybar salons and products, I decided to give it a try. This has an extremely powerful motor but is still very gentle. It's more lightweight compared to Solanos and more gentle. It comes with two different nozzles, three temperatures and two settings. Most hairdryers I've tried come with a switch for cool-air that you have to hold down to keep the cool air flowing. This one has a turn on/off switch for the cool hair which keeps your fingers free. It dries hair fairly quickly and doesn't overheat or dry out the hair. I can't say it's better than Solano, but rather just different. Solano has more heavy duty dryers that are the best I've tried. Drybar's is also excellent and I have no complaints, it's gentler on the hair and takes slightly longer for me to dry hair, but if you have sensitive scalps or weaker hair, this one is very gentle and easy to use but still effective.

For brushes, I alternate between CHI's Turbo Paddle Brush (7), Mason Pearson Pocket Brush (9) and Detangling Comb (8) (review on Mason Pearson here).

Last but not least, my favorite hair straightening tool is the HAI Ceramic Convertible Flat Iron (10). I've tried several, and this is the one I keep going back to (I'm on my second one). It leaves the hair with a super sleek smooth straight look that doesn't fry the ends or dry out the hair.

I hope this summary helps give you some ideas on hair care items to try. This is by no means a list of all the items I've tried, there are many other items from Phyto, Malin + Goetz, Neutrogena, Kiehl's etc. that I've tried (among my favorite brands for hair), but what I've listed includes my absolute favorites.

What kind of hair do you have and what are your favorites?

Monday, December 30, 2013

The Top 13 Beauty Discoveries in 2013

The top 13 beauty discoveries of 2013 from The Beauty Look Book (reviews from the past year are linked for each item listed):
  1. Caudalie Divine Oil - my absolute favorite beauty discovery this year
  2. By Terry Baume de Rose - pure luxury for the lips, worth every penny
  3. Drybar The Chaser Shine Pomade - my holy grail hair product to add shine, remove frizz, long lasting and smells amazing, my husband also loves this for his hair
  4. Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder - the perfect answer to glowing skin and my second favorite discovery this year
  5. Urban Decay Naked3 Palette - lovely rose-gold neutrals
  6. Chanel Taboo Le Vernis - a dramatic purple with red and silver shimmers, The Beauty Look Book's second most popular post from 2013
  7. Dior Diablotine Le Vernis - the most striking intense coral red shimmer
  8. Tom Ford Illuminating Cheek Colors - unfortunately these were released in very limited quantities, but close alternatives you can get right now are MAC Magnetic Nude Skinfinishes in Magnetic Appeal and Fairly Precious
  9. Edward Bess Black Sea Mousse Foundations - I've mixed Light and Medium to get a good match, I've found that this is indeed the perfect full coverage foundation that gives a flawless airbrushed look that still manages to look natural, I truly hope Edward releases this to all his counters and in more shades (it was a QVC exclusive that sold out almost instantly)
  10. Chanel Les Beiges Powders - my favorite is 20 for all over, 30 and 40 work wonders for natural contouring and adding a soft glow of color to the face
  11. Diptyque 10-Piece Set - special release this holiday and the perfect way to try multiple scents at a more affordable price than buying the full sizes of each candle
  12. YSL Rouge Volupte Shines - my favorite lipsticks of the year for and The Beauty Look Book's most popular post from 2013
  13. Chanel Illusion D'Ombre in Initiation - holiday 2013 release and the perfect bronze shimmer
I am thankful from the bottom of my heart for each and every one of my readers. You inspire me every week with your thoughtful and insightful comments/e-mails/tweets. I can't express enough how appreciative I am for those of you who take the time to share your expertise and add your input to my weekly features. Your experiences, tips and tricks help others like myself figure out what works or how to make things work better. Thank you for following my blog and for your support.

What were your top beauty discoveries this year?

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Winter Skin and Hair Savers


It's that time of the year where my skin and hair is in desperate need of that extra boost of moisture to fight dry patches. Finding lightweight moisturizing products can be a bit of a challenge for my sensitive skin. My nose is particularly sensitive so light-fragranced items are a must. My go-to fixes and staples this season right now:
  • Aerin Rose Hand and Body Cream $40 is a lovely light-scented hand treatment, it's a bit pricey for me to justify using on the body, but it's a nice moisturizing cream for the hands. It smells like candied roses which is really nice (coming from a person who doesn't really like strong rose florals).
  • Estee Lauder Re-Nutriv Intensive Smoothing Hand Cream $55 is probably the priciest hand cream I own, I was lucky to get this as a gift with purchase one year. It smells like a spa treatment. It's a bit heavier than most hand creams I use but it dries down to a soft silky finish. It helps diminish those dry lines in the hands upon application. Read the reviews on Nordstrom.com and you'll see this is well worth the price.
  • L'Occitane Extra-Gentle Lotion for Hands and Body $20 is the perfect body lotion for me. I've gone through five bottles already and keep one at work and one at home. I'm a huge fan of L'occitane's Shea Butter line. They have several different options of moisturizing intensity depending on your skin needs. I like this one because it melts into the skin and makes any itchy dryness disappear without being too greasy. I love the lightweight scent - it's very soothing and comforting. It's neutral enough to be unisex. My husband and male co-workers always borrow mine.
  • Caudalie Divine Oil $49 is relatively new to me. I've written about the mini size that I've tried which is perfect for the purse. I loved it so much I bought the full size in the trio set. I spray it on the legs and elbows. It smells fresh and light and feels nice on the skin. It's also designed for the face and hair - I've only tried it on the ends of my hair to add a bit of shine (although I prefer other hair treatments).
  • Jo Malone Vitamin E Lip Conditioner $25 is one of my favorite lip treatments. Review here. It's soft, moisturizing and you can feel the results instantly.
  • Jo Malone Vitamin E Vitamin E' Body Treatment Scrub $90 is the ultimate luxury body scrub. It's a spa in a tub and smells like a luscious honey dessert. It's strongly scented and extremely moisturizing - if you visit your local Jo Malone store or counter they should be able to make a small sample for you to try. It's really REALLY amazing.
  • Deborah Lippmann Cuticle Oil $20 is one of the first cuticle oils I've tried. In the past I've tried substituting baby oil but found it hasn't really helped my dry cuticles. This one is made of pure white jojoba oil, vitamin E and coconut oil (it smells like coconuts). It works well on my cuticles and a little goes a long way. Be careful to keep application to the cuticles as it can feel a bit sticky on the finger tips. The texture is perfect to actually stay on the cuticles (versus some oils that are so liquid/fluid they roll off quickly).
  • By Terry Baume de Rose $60 review here. My holy grail lip treatment, but still a three way tie with the Jo Malone and Hourglass.
  • Drybar The Chaser Shine Pomade $28 is the hair cream of all hair creams. It adds shine without being too heavy or greasy looking on the hair. I find it lasts all day long. I've used it a couple of ways. One is right after I shower on towel-dried damp hair. This is the only thing I've tried that lets my hair air dry perfectly without any frizz. It makes the perfect pre-heat treatment as well (whether it's blow drying or straightening). I also find it makes a great finishing product to add a bit of texture and shine. Bonus is that my husband likes it on his hair as a pomade (even though it's really a cream). The smell is incredible too.
What are you winter skin and hair savers? I'm all ears to hear what your favorites are!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

The Dry Bar - West Hollywood


My friend from Jonesy Loves and I have been planning our one-day LA extravaganza for weeks. She has a knack for discovering the most interesting things in fashion and hair styling and on the list of must-do's was to try out the DryBar - a blow dry bar concept salon. Before going, we did our research. I found these resources helpful:

The Honeybee {Andee, we love your blog!}
The Fresh Fiends {cute video}
Johns Journal {great review and photos}
Arizona Foothills Magazine {nice before & after video}

The experience at the Drybar in Hollywood was amazing for me. The atmosphere was so inviting and the results were great. We went on a Saturday morning and it was packed when we got there. Luckily we had appointments early in the day and did not have to wait at all.

What is the Drybar? Their tagline is "No cuts. No color. Just blowouts. Only $35." I can't find a better way to describe it.

What happens at the Drybar? The staff does everything to make you feel welcome and at ease. When you walk in you are greeted and offered a drink (water, tea, coffee, mimosas or plain juice). There is a cute waiting area in the front and once your stylist is ready, they sit you down in a bar area and show you a menu and lookbook with style options to choose from. They have options ranging from straight and sleek to messy beachy to lots of loose curls. Each style has a fun bar-themed name like Mai Tai or Cosmo. There are step up options such as an extra 10 minute head massage that they call the Floater. After you pick what style you want, they shampoo and wash your hair

What I loved: The decor is bright and beautiful. The stylists make your hair look amazing. Every girl that came into the salon left with gorgeous hair that just shined and looked so flowy. The price is right. You can't beat $35 even if you just try it once. They pamper you with magazines, a beverage of your choice and a movie while styling your hair - I could not have asked for a better experience.

Entrance area for check-in:


The menu:


The waiting area:


The dry bar area, complete with flat screen (they were playing Pretty Woman) & hooks underneath for your purses!


I asked for a combination of the Manhattan (sleek and smooth) with a little bit of Mai Tai (messy beachy) at the ends. The result was a lot more volumized and curly than I'm used to so I asked my stylist to smooth it out for a more straightened look. I'm super low maintenance and super chicken when it comes to hair experimentation and have my hair cut 2 times (maybe 3 times) per year. At the Drybar I probably could have done something more curly or wavy - maybe next time.

The left is photo is right after our appointment. The right side is late evening.


Another close up from late evening:


Bottom line: I'm now a fan! I would definitely go again for a special occasion or with girlfriends just for fun. Check out their website TheDryBar.com for more photos, info and locations. All photos taken by me.

Have you been to a Dry Bar yet? If so what were your thoughts?

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Today Was Epic


Today was an amazing girls' day out in Beverly Hills packed with of all sorts of goodness. We hit up the Dry Bar, Lucky Scent, Barneys, Saks, Neimans and fit in a delicious lunch in between. LA can be very interesting and as many have noted, it is its own universe. I'm deliriously exhausted, but in a good way. Definitely glad to be back home but already looking forward to my next trip :)

Today's highlight: I met my idol, THE Mr. Edward Bess today and he did my makeup! More to come soon. {Photo above should be labeled "The Beauty Look Book was here", they wanted to put my Miu Miu in Edward's display case, lol!}
 

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