Review: Ole Henrickson Ultimate Lift Eye Gel

As I've mentioned many times on my blog...I don't get enough sleep. There has been one product lately that has been rocking my world and helping me in my ongoing battle against puffy eyes- and it's Ole Henriksen Ultimate Lift Eye Gel.

I got this product as part of a Sephora kit and tried it, not expecting much. Guess what? I love it. This is a clear gel meant to be applied at night to de-puff as you sleep...and that is exactly what it does!

I apply a thin layer (if you use too much it gets sticky, less is definitely more here) before bed, and wake up with eyes that are much less puffy. It also does a nice job of pumping up my normal eye cream and giving me an extra boost of moisture. If you're as sleep-deprived as me, I would definitely give this a shot!

Video: Evening Skincare Routine

In this week's video, I talk about skincare...again. This time in the form of my evening skincare routine. Hope you enjoy!

Dirty Hair Saviors

As I have quite long and thick hair, I only wash it a few times a week as it is a pain to wash and dry. In comes dry best friend on second day hair. Here are my two top picks:

For the dark-haired girls:Batiste Dry Shampoo in Dark and Deep Brown. This tinted dry shampoo helps mop up oil and leaves hair feeling refreshed...without a white cast. Plus, it smells like caramel, which means I'm in!

For major volume: Dove refresh+care Invigorating Dry Shampoo . This one smells more "fresh" but regardless leaves hair looking clean while imparting mega-volume. I use this one on first day hair to build volume, and it never leaves my hair looking grey.

These two products are helping me save time you have a favorite dry shampoo?

Spring Nail Polish Picks

Spring is (finally) here, which means it's time to bust out the brights and pastels when it comes to your nails... Here are a few I've been loving lately:

First comes Wet n Wild MegaLast Nail Color in I Need a Refresh-Mint, my absoulute favorite formula for nail polish. Less than $5, lasts ages on the nails, and has a wide brush which means my whole nail is done in one stroke.

Next comes another budget nail color, Sinful Color's Nail Polish in Sweet Tooth. I picked mine up from Target, it's the perfect pastel lavender color. This one lasts a pretty long time when I use a base and top coat, and for $2 you really can't go wrong!

Final, another Wet n Wild Megalast polish, this one in Young 'n' Cheeky. I couldn't find this one online, but I just picked it up from Walgreens recently, so have a nosy around there and you're sure to find it! This is a beautiful hot pink that screams spring and lasts around a week on my nails without chipping!

Do you have any spring nail recommendations I should check out?

Four Product Face

The four product face: the best thing for those mornings when you wake up late and need to get out the door in minutes. This honestly takes me three minutes, tops.

First, I take the amazing Rimmel Match Perfection Foundation and apply it using my fingers- no time for a brush here. This smooths over my imperfections while leaving a satin-y finish that is perfect for disguising my dull skin.

Next comes my Maybelline Fit Me Concealer, which I use on any blemishes, scars and dark circles. This one does it all, being hydrating and high-coverage at the same time!

After that's sorted, I take my favorite bronzer- N.Y.C. Sunny Bronzer, and add that to the temples, side of the nose, and cheeks. This matte bronzer is less than $4 and blends like a dream.

Finally, a coat of Benefit They're Real Mascara, my favorite for fluttery lashes.

And then it's out the door for me...I'm left with just enough time to stop by Starbucks for a Caramel Flan Latte...anyone else obsessed?

Review: Caudalie Beauty Elixir

Today, I'm talking about the Caudalie Beauty Elixir, one of my favorite skincare products. As you'll soon see in my skincare treatment videos (coming on my YouTube channel very soon), I use this every morning and am now lost without it. It's essentially a spray toner that claims to smooth features, tighten pores, and brighten. I'm not sure about all of that, but for me it is a refreshing addition to my skincare routine that just makes me feel more alive after a night of too-few hours of sleep. I also notice a huge difference in my acne when I use this- it helps calm pesky breakouts and I don't notice as much scarring when I use this product. I was a bit skeptical when I first tried this out, but am now obsessed! Let me know if you've tried this and what you thought of it!

Top Cleansing Picks

Because I love skincare so very much, I thought it was time to talk about my favorite cleansers.

 As I mentioned before on my blog, I'm in love with the The Body Shop Chamomile Cleansing Butter I wont rave about it again, but if you're interested my full review is here.

Another way I love to remove my makeup is by using plain old Coconut Oil. The one I use is from Trader Joe's, but you can find it here.

Next comes the First Aid Beauty Face Cleanser, a recent discovery that leaves my skin feeling clean without feeling stripped, and really clarifies the skin.  I've only tried a few things from this brand but have LOVED them all and am really interested in trying more from their range!

I think Philosophy really bring it when it comes to cleansers. The first one I use as a morning cleanse is Philosophy Purity Made Simple One-Step Facial Cleanser, which is gentle and non-irritating while still leaving my skin feeling clean and hydrated. My mom has a huge bottle of the stuff, so I just weasel mine off of her and keep it in an old Snow Angel bottle.  I love to mix a bit of this in with the Philosophy Microdelivery Exfoliating Wash, which exfoliates using fine particles and doesn't irritate my skin. These two mixed together create magic, a foaming exfoliating cleanser that is gentle but effective.

As you can probably tell, I'm a bit cleanser crazy...but for me, cleansing is my favorite part of my skincare routine. There's nothing more satisfying then getting all the makeup and dirt off your face at night! Let me know if you have any skincare favorites I should check out!

The Bright-Eyed Edit

I wake up at 5:30 during the week and work 10 hour days with children. This means that more often than not, I am sleep deprived. This means I need some serious help to look bright-eyed and bushy tailed. 

In comes my three savior products, the first being the Garnier Skin Renew Anti-Dark Circle Eye Roller, the first layer on my under eye area. This yellow-toned roller ball cools and de-puffs while doing a good job of counteracting my dark circles.

 After my dark-circles have been tamed, I need a brightener to perk up my eyes. My current favorite is Bare Minerals Stroke of Light Eye Brightener, which conceals and brightens brilliantly without creasing.

Finally, Rimmel Scandal Eyes Waterproof Kohl Eyeliner in Nude goes on my waterline. Let the fact that my pencil is down to a little nub speak to how much I adore this product. It is creamy, long-lasting, and makes my eyes look big.

These three products have been saving me on a daily basis, so I figured they deserved a mention. Let me know if you have any savior under eye products I should check out!

April Birchbox Unboxing

I unboxed my April Birchbox, and you can find that video here!

Top Drugstore Foundation Picks

 For today's post, I'm rounding up my favorite drugstore foundations.

First, we have L'Oreal Paris Magic Nude Liquid Powder Bare Skin Perfecting Makeup, a light coverage foundation that's perfect for a no-makeup makeup look. Feels like nothing, looks incredibly natural, but not so great if it's a bad skin day.

Next we have Revlon Nearly Naked Foundation, which provides a bit more coverage than the Magic Nude, while still looking and feeling incredibly light and natural. This one works well on my dry patches as well, making it perfect for an everyday, light foundation.

Third is L'Oreal Paris True Match Lumi Foundation,the glowier version of the original. Medium coverage but buildable, this is my favorite for the winter when skin tends to look a bit dull.

Next comes my most recent discovery, Rimmel Match Perfection Foundation, which does, amazingly, match my skin tone perfectly. Great lasting power, medium to full coverage, and perfect for the days when my skin is just not cooperating.

Finally we have the highest coverage of them all,Rimmel Stay Matte Liquid Mousse Foundation.This does keep my skin matte all day, and doesn't contain SPF, which makes it perfect for filming/flash photography. This lasts for a good 8 hours without a primer, but if you're looking for more longevity (which I usually am), you'll need to enlist a good primer to keep this one intact.

So that's that! My top foundation picks...let me know what your favorites are as I'm always on the hunt for the next best foundation!

The Biggest Loves: Face Mask Edition

I have something to confess: I'm a face mask junkie. I spend an embarrassing amount of time and money looking for the perfect mask to purify, hydrate, exfoliate, and a number of other things. Today I thought I'd round up some of my favorites and share them with you.

First up, The Budget Buy:Freeman Feeling Beautiful Chocolate & Strawberry Facial Detoxifying Mask . This mask smells of (you guessed it) chocolate and strawberries, and draws out impurities from the face without over-drying my skin. For $4, it can't be beat (and is available here).

Next, we have the splurge: The REN Glycol Lactic Radiance Renewal Mask. Now, I've already raved about this product plenty here, so I wont blabber on much more. Suffice it to say, its an exfoliating and brightening mask that is helping majorly with my hyperpigmentation.

Third, we have the mask for acne-prone skin:The Body Shop Tea Tree Face Mask. Coming in at around $15, this mask is affordable and works wonders on blemishes. Its cooling and manages to fight acne without drying the skin, making it a huge winner in my book!

Finally, the hydrating mask. This Paula's Choice Skin Recovery Hydrating Treatment Mask I picked up on a whim and am so glad I did! It can be used as an overnight treatment, or as a 15 minute hydrating mask. It calms my skin, hydrates, and leaves it glowing. Definitely one to try!

From top: Body Shop Tea Tree Mask, Paula's Choice Hydrating Mask, Freeman's Chocolate Mask, REN Radiance Mask

Well, that's about it for me. I'm off to go use a face mask or two myself...pamper night, anyone?

Body Shop Chamomile Cleansing Butter

I'm back for another skincare post (surprise, surprise)! I am all about investing in skincare, as I think that no matter how expensive your makeup is, if you skin is in good condition it will always look better. This product however, requires no splurge. I'm talking about The Body Shop Camomile Sumptuous Cleansing Butter, which I recently picked up on a trip to Ulta. I've only been using for a few weeks, but it has very quickly become my favorite cleanser.

For less than $20, you get 90 ml of product, which is a pretty good deal when compared to the price of the Emma Hardie cleansing balm. I massage the silky smooth balm into my dry skin, and it easily removes all my makeup. It emulsifies and turns into a sort of cleansing milk when water is added, which only makes it feel more luxurious. It is lightly scented, but it didn't irritate my sensitive, acne-prone skin. If you're new to cleansing balms (or even if you're not), I would recommend giving this one a shot as it is inexpensive and gets the job done beautifully!

The Love: Benefit They're Real

Prepare yourself for a rave, people. I'll admit I'm not usually super loyal to any one mascara, and I usually opt for drugstore mascaras as I never notice a huge difference between drugstore and high end formulas. But I recently tried a sample of Benefit They're Real and am absolutely blown away. It's definitely worth the hype! I talked about it in my March Favorites video here, and I took before and after pictures to prove my point, but let me say it this way: I've genuinely had people ask me if I have false lashes on. This is not a thing that happens to me! I would highly, highly recommend picking it up or at least getting a sample!

top left: no mascara, bottom left: They're Real on left eye, right: They're Real on both lashes

March Favorites

My March Favorites video is up! You can watch it here!

The Love: Ren Glycol Lactic Radiance Renewal Mask

Let's talk skincare. While my skin has many issues, one of my main concerns is hyperpigmentation. It seems no matter how gentle I am with my skin, after I get rid of a spot there is always a pesky dark mark left in its place. There has been one hero product that has been helping heal my dark marks, and it is the REN Glycol Lactic Radiance Renewal Mask. This is a brightening mask using several different acids (lactic, glycolic, tartaric and citric) to exfoliate and brighten the skin. After hearing all sorts of buzz about this product from some of my favorite bloggers, I decided to bite the bullet and try this mask.
This mask comes out as a sort of thick, marmalade like consistency and smells of oranges. Simply smooth on, leave for 10 minutes and wipe off. The first time I used this mask, it didn't wow me. It wasn't that it did anything bad to my skin, it simply didn't seem to do anything particularly good either. Because I spent a significant amount of money on it, I decided to keep trying it and I am so glad I did.
I use this mask weekly to brighten and exfoliate my skin, and have found that with continued use my hyperpigmentation is definitely improving. Definitely a love in my book.