One of the best benefits of joining those store rewards programs are the freebies! This year Sephora has three to choose from, skincare from Caudalie, blush and lipstick from Tarte or grooming essentials for men from Jack Black. This year I decided to go with Tarte. The blush is a nice pretty pink and the lip gloss is more like a liquid lipstick in a nude shade (and it smells minty). All you have to do to get your free birthday gift is sign up for the Beauty Insider club online or in store. You can get your free gift anytime during your birthday month – no purchase required!
ULTA changes their birthday gift every quarter or so. You can usually find it in the ad book sent out in the mail. Some stores are also giving out a freebie from Benefit (they used to do a free eyebrow wax). Getting your gift is harder. You have to be registered for the rewards program and wait to get an email in the mail that can be redeemed for your gift. Summer 2017’s gift is this cool NYX eyeshadow palette ($18 value ) filled with some great fall colors.
Other beauty rewards programs:
CVS Beauty – Separate from your regular CVS card, get $5 when you spend $50 and $3 for your birthday.
MAC – Free shipping, discounts and samples. No birthday gift but you’ll get a free full size product on your anniversary.
The next frontier of wrinkle reduction, the décolleté
One of the most forgotten areas of the body is the décolleté. Sun, wind, gravity and side sleeping all can lead to crepey, wrinkled skin on your chest and in between your breasts. But never you fear, there is a solution!
A new line of treatment products is taking on the delicate décolleté problem with the technology of silicone. Sio Beauty was developed by Gigi Howard, a young woman saddled with chest wrinkles from a young age. Howard tried all kinds of DIY and over-the-counter treatments to lessen the wrinkles with no success. Then one day she was talking with a friend about these scar bandages her doctor prescribed for post surgery scars. She borrowed one from her friend and saw results in one night.
After consulting with doctors and scientists and creating 60 prototypes, Howard finally came up with SiO SkinPad. Made from medical grade silicone, the pad has an almost reverse figure eight shape that fits between the breasts and over the chest. Each pad is reusable at lasts 15 uses. If you ever used one of those silicone blister bandages than you know how it works to lock in moisture and speed up cell turnover. The SiO system includes pre-treatment cleansing pads that help exfoliate and prepare the skin for the pad and post treatment serum.
SiO Beauty sent me a complimentary sample of the system so I could give it a test run. First I used the SiO Décolleté Cleansing Discs. Glycolic acid helps remove dead skin and prep the skin for the SiO SkinPad. After waiting 30 minutes for the skin to dry, I applied the SkinPad. Applying it was kind of awkward so I decided to lay down. It adhered pretty snug to my skin and initially felt a little weird. About an hour in I couldn’t even feel it. After I peeled it off in the morning, my skin was a little red and so I applied the post treatment serum. Although I don’t have a lot of wrinkles, I definitely noticed a difference. I wondering how well these would work for face? Are you listening SiO Beauty? The pads can also be used to prevent wrinkles from forming as well.
The SiO Skin Pads are $49.95 for a package of two or you can purchase them with the pre-treatment cleansing pads and post treatment serum for $138.45 at siobeauty.com. Follow them on Facebook/SiOBeauty for special offers.
Sheet masks have become very popular in the skin care realm. But not all masks are created equal. Some paper masks are just gelatinous masks that fall off your face and offer a mediocre result. I got the Laneige Water Bank Soothing Gel Mask in a Target Beauty Box and was the most valuable item in the box.
Laneige is a Korean beauty brand that prices out on the higher end. The brand is currently exclusive to Target and includes skin care and makeup. This mask is actually a bio cellulose mask, a heavier almost plastic looking material. It adheres to skin and provides a better delivery method of treatment into the skin.
Unlike other masks, it comes in two pieces and eliminates the bad fit you get with one piece mask designs. It doesn’t have a strong smell and utilizes simple, powerful ingredients like hyaluronic acid, mineral water and quinoa extract. I left it on for 30 minutes and I noticed the mask was thinner as the ingredients actually ABSORBED into my face. The results were amazing! My skin was plumped and glowing. It helped minimize fine lines and my skin looked like I just got a $120 facial at an upscale spa. The prescribed use is once or twice a week and comes to about $5 per mask. This product would be great to use for a special event like a wedding or night out.
The Laneige Water Bank Soothing Gel Mask ( I may get a commission from this link) is available in a 5-pack online or in Target stores. Through March 18, 2017, spend $20 in beauty and get a $5 gift card (online and in stores) or spend $35 on Laneige products and get a $10 gift card (online only).
Shop online at Laneige.com/us beginning on April 1, 2017!
I love oil cleansers. They are the easiest way to remove makeup without causing stress on the skin. Plus, they leave residual moisture, unlike most soap based cleansers. My favorite cleanser of all time by The Body Shop (Moisture White) was discontinued and so I have been on the lookout for an new oil cleanser made without mineral oil.
I found this creamy coconut oil based cleanser at Target and gave it a try. Made with rice bran oil, coconut oil, sunflower seed oil and olive oil, Yes To Coconuts Ultra Hydrating Melting Cleanser (I may get a commission off this link!) is actually a thick gel. You can apply it as is, or mix it with water. Mixing it with water makes for an easier application but it hard to get the right cleanser/water mixture that takes off your makeup in one try. It also seems to leave a residue behind.
Bottom line, I use it once in a while but it doesn’t work as good as a traditional oil cleanser. I just started using Simple’s Hydrating Cleansing Oil (I may get a commission off this link) instead. It is made with a majority grapeseed oil and pulls most of the makeup off in one swoop. The Yes To Coconuts cleanser does work well to clean makeup brushes and sponges!
Its been several years since my favorite brow wax kit left the market (Anastasia Beverly Hills). Ever since I have been looking for a replacement for waxing at home. I stumbled across this affordable Sweetease kit and ULTA and it has been working pretty well.
Sweetease Face Waxing Kit
The kit comes with eight strips, an instruction card and aftercare wipes. I use two strips (brows and upper lips) each time. I also have a little baby oil and cotton swabs on hand to remove wax residue. I cut the strips in half for easier application and if I’m really feeling ambitious, I trace the underside of my brow on the strip with a pen to get a closer fit. The kit isn’t perfect, but for $3.99 its a nice substitute for a $20 salon wax. Find it at ULTA and CVS stores.