As I mentioned in my recent post where I discussed my 2015 beauty resolutions, this is the year I’m getting my hair in it’s best shape ever. Possessing curls aplenty, my hair needs special care, and over time I’ve learned there are 3 must have products for curly hair that I cannot be without.
A hair brush is the mortal enemy of curly hair. If I were to brush my hair on a regular basis, madness would ensue. However, there are snarls and knots that need to be combed through, so I coat my hair with an oil and comb through with a wide toothed comb right before I wash my hair. Snarls are eliminated and as a bonus the oil acts as a conditioning treatment.
2. A Good Natural Oil
My hair can’t tolerate typical shine treatments that only seem to dump a bunch of dimethicone on hair. Instead, a couple of drops of a good oil do the trick when my hair needs a bit of a boost between washes. Lately I’ve been applying some oil to the ends of my hair at night – my dry ends need the moisture.
Right now I’m using and loving InstaNatural Argan Oil ($17.95), a cold-pressed oil that can be used on your hair, skin, nails, and face.
There are no chemicals or artificial fragrances used in this pure oil, making it ideal for hair that needs a lot of pampering.
3. A Hair Mask
While I will use a shampoo every few washes, I’m a co-washer, meaning I’ll only use conditioner to cleanse my hair. I’ve been doing this for many years with great success and have found that my hair takes on new life and vitality when I use a hair mask for this purpose.
There are several nourishing hair masks in my current co-washing rotation, and one that I’ve been enjoying is the InstaNatural Argan Oil Hair Mask ($17.95). My hair really loves Argan Oil, and this mask is so nourishing, giving my hair much needed moisture.
The key ingredients are: Argan Oil, Amino Acid Complex, Coconut Oil, Shea Butter, and Vitamin B5. You can either use this as a daily conditioner, or leave it on your hair for 10 minutes as a hair mask.
With the use of these three products, my curls are supple and I can definitely say the “happy curl, happy girl” principal is in effect!
Do you have certain must have products you use in your hair?
So, my hair had seen better days when I took photos for today’s makeup inspiration, which features products I received in the Ipsy January 2015 Fresh Start Glam Bag. What better time to pull out my peacock fascinator? My skin is currently red and inflamed from allergies, but I give all credit to my foundation lineup for keeping things together!
InstaNatural Hyaluronic Acid Serum and InstaNatural Youth Express Eye Gel came into my life recently, and my skin is very thankful.
Over the past couple of months I’ve been trying many InstaNatural products, and have to say overall my skin is very impressed. This affordable, high quality skincare line offers serums, moisturizers, masks, and other products that target a variety of skin concerns. At the moment, my biggest skin care issue is dryness. InstaNatural Hyaluronic Acid Serum ($16.95) is exactly what my Winter-parched skin needs right now. Hyaluronic Acid is a natural hydrator and helps your skin retain moisture. It’s a must have!
InstaNatural’s Hyaluronic Acid Serum contains Hyaluronic Acid along with antioxidants that include Vitamin C, Jojoba Oil, Aloe, and Green Tea to plump up and firm skin. This serum absorbs into my skin quickly and I’ve never experienced any irritation.
You can use this alcohol-free serum both day and night under your typical moisturizer and other skincare items.
I must give InstaNatural Youth Express Eye Gel ($19.97) a round of applause, because it’s just that great. This firming gel has made my under eye area extremely happy. I’m wowed in a way I never expected!
This lightweight, fast absorbing eye gel is enriched with Plant Stem Cells, Hyaluronic Acid, Matrixyl 3000, Vitamin E and Jojoba Oil to target and improve the appearance of dark circles, elasticity, wrinkles, puffiness and sagging skin.
This is my current go-to eye cream and I love that it instantly makes my under eyes feel more taut. It’s something I didn’t expect to love, but cherish dearly.
My Final Thoughts: The prices of InstaNatural products are absolutely fantastic. You cannot beat them AND the products are effective. I’m definitely a new, repeat customer! Both the Hyaluronic Serum and Youth Express Eye Gel are fantastic – if you have dryness, you’ll love both.
Earlier this week I received my monthly Ipsy January 2015 Fresh Start Glam Bag, and I can tell you without a doubt Ipsy is starting the year on a good note.
Ipsy hasn’t been the most consistent in the past, but I was truly impressed with my contents from the get go. This is the first Ipsy bag that has it all right – I like everything I received and really feel like I got a great value for the $10 monthly subscription fee.
Besides that, the makeup bag matches my mani perfectly! A plus!
Here’s what I got in my bag:
– Velvet 59 Velvet Lip Gloss in Noisette (full-sized, $19) – soft, plushy, and gorgeously shiny.
– Elizabeth Mott All Over Shadow Brush (full-sized, $10) – soft and supple and definitely something I’m loving.
– Pacifica Natural Mineral Coconut Eyeshadow in Treasure (full-sized, about $10) – another gorgeous gold shadow.
– La Fresh Eco-Beauty Good Day Moisturizer (sample size) – I love this packaging!
From left to right, here are swatches of Whesek, Treasure, and Noisette.
Combined, these shadows and gloss make for a gorgeous look! I’m actually super impressed with all three colors.
Everything in this bag is something I will use and I think it was balanced just right. It’s like the bag was acutally curated according to the preferences I’ve set over the time I’ve been with Ipsy. Not too much skincare, but 4 full-sized makeup products I’m excited to use.
I also cashed in some points for the J. Cat Wonder Lip Paint in Red Potion, which is a glorious, shiny oxblood red.
My Final Thoughts: Overall, I’m entirely impressed with the Ipsy January 2015 Fresh Start Glam Bag. For $10 I received makeup and skin care products to try out, and I think it’s a great deal.
Thinking back on 2014, I have to say it was a great year of improvement for my skin’s health. Vitamin C was the ingredient that brought renewed vitality to my face and became a must have for my skincare routine. I’ve been testing InstaNatural Vitamin C Moisturizer along with InstaNatural Vitamin C Serum, and both products are integral parts of my current product rotation.
While it’s a brand that’s new to me, I’ve been really pleased with several InstaNatural products I’ve tested recently. Over the past couple of months, I’ve found InstaNatural skincare to be effective, gentle, and the prices are right, in fact they’re just plain awesome. You get more than you pay for with InstaNatural products and I’ll definitely be back for more.
I’ve been layering the InstaNatural Vitamin C ($16.97) underneath the InstaNatural Vitamin C Moisturizer for optimal results. The serum has a fresh citrus fragrance and is packed with ingredients that will add a glow, moisture, plump, firm, and re-texturize your skin.
The key ingredients of this wonder serum (that I’m totally repurchasing) include 20% Vitamin C, Hyaluronic Acid, Ferulic Acid, Sea Buckthorn Oil, Argan Oil, Rosehip Oil, Plant Stem Cells, and Pomegranate.
The orange color of this serum is due to the Sea Buckthorn Oil, which adds a lot of moisture.
This serum is comparable to similar serums I’ve reviewed in the past, and I like the results just as much. The price is fantastic, so it’s a winner, for sure, in my book.
The InstaNatural Vitamin C Moisturizer ($19.95) contains a plethora of antioxidant-rich ingredients, namely 20% Vitamin C, 5% Niacinamide, 5% Hyaluronic Acid, and Plant Stem Cells.
You can use this both morning and night to improve the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and discoloration, as well as improve dryness. My skin is so different in Winter and I do need added moisture, so this has really hit the spot!
Both products skin into my skin with ease and aren’t greasy, nor do they irritate my skin.
My Final Thoughts: Overall, I’m really pleased with the antioxidant-rich InstaNatural Vitamin C Serum and InstaNatural Vitamin C Moisturizer. With price tags that won’t break the bank, you’ll be able to treat your skin right.
Even though the Holiday season is barely over, it seems like it was months and months ago we celebrated the turn of the New Year. Wasn’t it? Today I’m collaborating with my fabulous beauty blogger pals from The Beauty Council and sharing my beauty resolutions for 2015.
1. Help My Hair!
So, I got my nail situation handled, got the errant skin in check, now it’s time to tackle my curls. I love my curls, but I am definitely seeing the need to take even better care of them than ever before. My hair has been the same length for years because my terribly split ends fall off when I comb through my curls. 2015 will be the year I get some hair length going on!
2. Get Organized … Really
This has been on my resolution list for years! A couple of weeks ago I shared a peek of my organization situation on Instagram, and it is an ongoing source of frustration. What I need to do is spend some time creating a makeup inventory on Excel, and invest in some good drawers for storage. You might really be a makeup junkie if you start thinking about spreadsheets, but hey!
3. Use What I Have
I have a lot of makeup. A lot! It’s par for the course and time for me to shop my stash more often and give life to makeup from days past.
4. Challenge Myself, Creatively
Just like everyone else, I get into creative ruts. I’m always inspired by some incredibly talented makeup artists on YouTube and Instagram, and I’m ready to break out my creative brushes.
5. Meet My Health Goals
Looking back, 2014 was a year of renewal. I finally got my health on track and feel entirely thankful for all the times I cried at the gym because I finally feel good again. Seriously, my legs were in agony!
In 2015, I will achieve my goal, which seems far off from where I am, but I have made it over the half way point. I am determined and I’ve learned slow and steady win the race.
6. Practice Nail Art
I’ll admit to feeling intimidated by nail art that goes beyond my favorite easy techniques. I’m going to pick up a stamping kit and spend some time figuring out how to make pretty patterns on my nails.
What are your beauty resolutions for 2015?
This post was done in collaboration with The Beauty Council.
Visit the blogs below to read up on our resolutions.
Another day, another shout out to my new favorite beauty brand, ColourPop Cosmetics. Today on Lipstick Love I have ColourPop Lippie Stix in Grind to show you.
Grind is a purple matte that’s described as being a “vivid blue violet”.
As with all ColourPop Lippie Stix, the pigmentation is incredible, as is the wear time. For $5, these lipsticks are some of the best deals in the beauty industry. For reals.
ColourPop sells coordinating Lippie Pencils for each of their Lippie Stix, but you can wear any neutral liner to pair with the lip colors. In my case, I reach for Milani Anti-Feathering Lip Pencil, which is clear and goes with anything.
I was playing around with some eyeshadow combos and paired Grind with a smoky eye look. The actual eye look didn’t turn out the way I hoped it would, so I’ll spare you the close up.
In other news:
a) I am so happy with the ring light I recently invested in, which you can see in the reflection of my eyes. It’s given me the ability to bust out makeup looks in the evenings when Andre has gone to bed, and that’s a really great time because I’m relaxed and am not rushed at all.
b) My skin has seen better days these days. Why you gotta play me like that, seasonal allergies and irritation? If you had any idea how itchy my skin is at the moment, you wouldn’t blame me for currently being makeup-less with a face covered in Aquaphor. This too shall pass, but in the meanwhile, thank you Aquaphor for being so soothing!
Here’s a list of some other ColourPop Lippie Stix I’ve featured in the past, with a couple more features coming soon.
If you’ve been reading the product descriptions of my Makeup Of The Day posts for the past couple of months, you will have noticed that I am pretty much exclusive to Smashbox HALO in Light/Neutral. It’s just that good!
In fact, HALO made me gasp out loud in amazement the first time I used it, giving my skin a gorgeous, lit-from-within illuminated glow. Never overly powdery, what I get with Smashbox HALO is a nice, long-wearing finish that sets my foundation and concealer products perfectly.
So, what is it that makes Smashbox HALO so great? Well, the fact that you shave the product off with a built-in tool that makes it completely un-messy is pretty darned cool. Besides that, HALO is talc-free, oil-free and includes built-in, anti-aging skin benefits. The ingredient list includes pure gold, 48 minerals, 11 amino acids, a powerful peptide, and a patented hydration system to provide hydration to your skin as long as you wear it.
Available in 8 shades, Light/Neutral is actually a great color for my medium/olive skin. If you are of my skin ilk, I’d also recommend going up a shade darker to Light/Medium. At $49, there are definitely less expensive powder options, but I do say I find the finish to be exceptional, so it’s worth it’s weight.
My Final Thoughts: Having used scores of beauty products through the years, anything that becomes a mainstay in my collection deserves all the raves it can possibly get. Smashbox HALO Hydrating Perfecting Powder offers a gorgeous, illuminated, long-wearing finish and sets foundation perfectly.