In most of the country it’s still too warm for pumpkin spice lattes, but that doesn’t mean you can’t gear up for fall. I have selected four beauty picks that are great for both warm and cool temperatures. First off we have the Yes To Charcoal Paper Mask. I got this skin clearing mask at Dollar Tree for $1 but you can find them everywhere from general merchandise stores to beauty boutiques. Charcoal is a natural skin detoxifier and has become a popular ingredient across the facial mask spectrum. I personally do not like to spend time putting on gooey masks and even more, I hate removing them. This mask is no fuss – no muss, and cleans out your pores, all for a good price. FYI- it may tingle or burn a little bit depending on the sensitivity level of your skin.
Next up is Revlon Color Charge Lip Powder in Peach Pucker. This has been around in short supply at different stores this summer. You can use this cool powder to create depth and highlight your lips without messing up your lipsticks/glosses. Use a sponge applicator or finger to apply and cover with a clear gloss if desired. It is also available in a palette of pinks and purples called “High Fever” and costs around $8 each. Ulta has a similar exclusive version with purple cases as part of the “Electric Shock” collection.
Eyeshadow sticks are amazing but can be really expensive. I got hooked on NARS’ Goddess at a cost of $29 each and have been auditioning replacements ever since. America’s favorite value cosmetic line E.L.F. has come up with a pretty good alternative. I picked up the E.L.F. COSMETICS No Budge Metallic Eyeshadow Stick in Pearl at CVS (They also sell a Rose Gold version) for just $4. Frankly, I couldn’t really tell the difference and will snapping up a few more.
Finally, here is my favorite fall find. I love Pixi by Petra‘s Glow Tonic. It speeds exfoliation and smells really good. The newest tonic, Pixi by Petra Retinol Tonic is taking its place. This jasmine scented tonic is infused with time release retinol and peptides that tackle two major skin issues (for me anyway), acne and fine lines. I have aging skin and using stronger retinol creams has been a nightmare of peeling skin and redness. This tonic has just a micro dose of retinol thats helps clear skin and reduce fine lines. In less than a month of use, it has cleared my weird chin acne and minimized lines. It’s just $15 for a 3.4 oz bottle at Target.
Hyaluronic Acid is my go to when it comes to skincare. I can’t enough of it. I have night creams, day creams, masks, lip balms and mascara, all formulated with the magic ingredient. Hyaluronic acid is the main ingredient in injectables like Restylane and can hold up to 1000 times its weight in water. What does it do for you? It plumps up your skin in major way!
Glow Matrix Advanced Skin Hydrator by Neocell (I may get a commission from this link), goes an extra step with a formulation made with Vitamin A, Ceramides, GLA and coconut water. Easy to use capsules help to build by collagen by boosting moisture and improving the body’s skin barrier.
Neocell gave me a sample of Glow Matrix Advanced Skin Hydrator to try, and here is the verdict. The package instructions say to take three capsules a day. Divided by 90, that gives you a 30 day supply. The first thing I noticed is that it turns your urine yellow! I guess you know its going through you! Within the first couple of days I noticed my skin was firmer, lines were less noticeable and my skin barrier was improved. Now skin barrier is hard thing to pin point so I like to give the example of how children’s skin is so smooth and even to the touch (that’s part of why it looks so good). A strong skin barrier is important to both the health and appearance of your skin at every age. I suffer from Rosacea so keeping that skin barrier strong helps reduce my symptoms.
In addition to my face, I also noticed improvement in the softness and suppleness of my skin on my neck and body. This supplement also helps to diminish that dry “crepey” skin you get as you age. I think Glow Matrix would also work great in the winter to combat dry indoor skin. You can get Glow Matrix for about $25 for a one month supply, which is a pretty good value. You can get in online at Neocell.com as well as Amazon (go Prime!), Costco, GNC and the Vitamin Shop.
Not long ago I got this deluxe la prairie foundation sample from Conde Nast’s Try It program. La prairie is a luxury brand of skincare carried at upscale stores like Neiman Marcus and Saks.
The La prairie Skin Caviar Essence-in-Foundation Broad Spectrum SPF 25 Sunscreen is the latest addition to the line. This light coverage fluid compact foundation has SPF built-in and provides buildable coverage. I was a little afraid to try it and my fears were realized when I saw how good it is. It glides on like butter, giving your face an airbrushed look. It’s a little damp to the touch so I layered it with a finishing powder. It lasted all day and was easy to remove. It comes in a range of 10 shades from ivory to tan.
Now the bad. The only real negative is the price- $195. A refill is included which make it more like $100, but still a pricier foundation. If you want to splurge on a really nice foundation for a wedding or special event, this would be it! Go to laprairie.com for stores.
As the years tick by, birthdays aren’t as fun. But one bright spot in my birthday month is collecting all those birthday freebies! First up is ULTA. They change their birthday gift every three months. Last year I got a huge NYX palette and this year I got a super sized sample of IT Cosmetics Superhero Elastic Stretch Volumizing Mascara. It is identical to the travel version (a $12 value) and comes in special box. To get your birthday freebie from ULTA, you have to be signed up with the ULTAmate Rewards Program and have to wait for a special email to redeem it.
Next up is Sephora. This year you have three choices, a Bite Beauty lip kit, Bumble & Bumble hair duo or what I got – the GLAMGLOW kit. I’m familiar with the brand, but never tried it so I thought, what the heck. It includes the SUPERMUD Clearing Treatment and GLOWSTARTER Mega Illuminating Moisturizer. Beauty Insider members can redeem their gift anytime during their birthday month online or in stores.
Lastly, CVS Beauty Club sent me a coupon for a free Poparazzi Nail Polish ($2.99). I chose a metal rose gold color called “Rose Gold Rendezvous”. The CVS Beauty Club also awards members with $3 in Extrabucks for every $30 spent. This is not included with your regular CVS card, you have to sign in and join to get these rewards!
In addition to beauty freebies for birthdays, there are also some other great freebies:
IKEA Family– coupon for $15 towards your purchase and a free dinner! Sign up here.
Chili’s – free desert and free drink or chips and salsa every visit.
Potbelly – Free cookie (good for two weeks).
Hair Cuttery– $3 off any $20 or more service.
IHOP – free short stack on your birthday -coupon good for 10 days.
AMC Stubs – free (big) tub of popcorn on your birthday. You can also earn points and get $5 movie tickets on Tuesdays.
Botox is great! But the price, not so much. I am always looking for alternatives so when I saw this forehead smoothing kit, I had to try it out. The “Wrinkles Schminkles Forehead Smoothing Kit” is $30 and comes with two forehead patches, each good for 20-30 applications. There is also a men’s kit which I assume includes bigger patches?
How to use: Apply patch to a clean forehead before bed and sleep wearing it. In the morning, remove it and place it back in the plastic bag. The thick silicone patch works by preventing your forehead to wrinkle in the night and providing extra moisture to skin. The adhesive helps to hold it in place and life of the patches can be extended by using the brand’s cleaning solution.
The good: The patch is comfortable to wear at night but as the night wears on, it can slip a little. It does help to suppress wrinkles but not necessarily remove them. The patch is like anything, if you don’t religiously use it, you won’t see results. At $15 a month, it’s cheaper than Botox.
The bad: I wish it would have come with separate storage for each patch. When you open the bag to replace the first patch, the other one is exposed to the air and probably dries out faster. I also wish it adhered a little better. I was hoping it more like the SiO Beauty Chest Patch, a thick silicone (more like the blister band-aids) that totally adheres to the skin. I have also used Furlesse patches and Frownies (I may get a commission from this link). The Furlesse patches are a little too thin. Frownies are essentially craft paper with a vegetable based adhesive. They fit really snug and are supposed to “train” your muscles back to their original condition before wrinkles. If you can keep up with them (they are hard to remove and sometimes cause pimples) they work great!
Wrinkles Schminkles also sells patches for eyes, chest, lips, hands and the neck. They are an Australian company but you can find them at Macy’s, Amazon (I may get a commission from this link) and direct at wrinklesschminkles.com.