Category Archives: Product Reviews

Save Your Skin This Summer With Vaseline Intensive Care Spray

Vaseline Intensive Care Spray

Confession: I don’t always practice what I preach.

I know the extreme importance of sunscreen, especially for someone with skin as fair as mine, but every now and then I slip up and forget to pack it in my beach tote. I had a classic sunburn situation this 4th of July when I forgot to reapply my sunscreen as I was frolicking around Coney Island. Big mistake!

Luckily, I had the amazing Vaseline Intensive Care Aloe Soothe Spray Moisturizer waiting for me at home. I discovered this beauty via the summer FabFitFun box and I fell in love! This particular variation is infused with aloe – just what my sunbaked skin needed!

The new Vaseline Intensive Care Spray Moisturizer leaves skin feeling instantly soft – not sticky or greasy. It contains the healing power of Vaseline with micro-droplets of Vaseline Jelly. In addition to the skin soothing benefits, this miracle product is so refreshing I want to use it even when I’m not lobster red. In fact, I’ve now incorporated it into my daily routine because it’s so effortlessly easy to use and extremely beneficial. 

It’s fast to apply, quick to dry, and starts to effectively heal thirsty skin immediately. It’s also an awesome moisturizer if you’re impatient (guilty!) and you hate to wait for lotion to absorb before getting dressed. You can spray this on right after your shower and you’re good to throw your clothes on and go in seconds! I highly recommend it – for your summer skin woes and beyond!

[Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Vaseline via FabFitFun, but all opinions are my own.]

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The New Urban Decay #NakedSmoky Palette is Everything You Need in Life

Urban Decay Naked Smoky Palette

The key to nailing the most sought-after and elusive eye look ever? Urban Decay’s new Naked Smoky Palette — loaded with ALL the essentials for the perfect smoky eye.

I am thrilled to be one of the lucky few who got to preview the much anticipated Urban Decay Naked Smoky Palette before it launches in stores. As expected, like its predecessors, it’s awesome. Urban Decay packed their newest Naked palette with a dozen sultry, smoky neutrals — nine never-before-seen shades and three exclusives. These beauties will take you from subtle smoky neutrals in the daytime to full-on clubbed-out shimmer smoky for your next night out.

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Experiment with warm bronzes, dimensional grays, rich browns, gorgeous taupes and deep black. From mattes to satins to shades with sparkle, Naked Smoky has it all and it includes everything you need in one palette: a true range of shades, the perfect brushes, even detailed tutorials!

I know this is a bold statement, but I think this might be my favorite of the Naked palettes. (I still love you though, Naked3!) I’m obsessed with its versatility and I know you will be too. Peek the video below for a closer look:

So, what do you think? Pick up your own Naked Smoky palette to perfect your smoky-eye looks and let me know how much you love it!

[Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Urban Decay via Conde Nast, but all opinions are my own.]

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Real Talk: Strobing Is Not New

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Guys… I feel like something needs to be said.

My inbox is full of press releases pitching the newest hit trick in the beauty blogosphere. Everyone is talking about how “contouring is out” and “strobing is in.” Instagram is blowing UP with #strobing right now.

I hate to break it to you all, but…

Strobing is not a new thing.

(And chances are, the makeup in those grams you’re double-tapping feature some contouring, too. We’re just pretending it’s not there.)

When I first learned the fundamental technique almost a decade ago, we called it “highlighting.” It can also be called “illuminating.” If you hail from the school of “HAC,” strobing would be the H minus the AC. Or if you subscribe to the Eve Pearl method of makeup – it would be the “reverse contour” she has been preaching for years. 

ALL of it is manipulating light to create the effect of more dimension in the face. It’s art 101 and it’s not going anywhere, no matter what we call it.  In old school makeup artist speak, I would say that what’s “on-trend” now is dialing up the highlight and minimizing the shading, but both elements are still there. I’m not hating on the effect, I just don’t think we should kid ourselves into believing it’s a new thing.

With that said, you do not need to listen to all of the beauty publications currently telling you to pitch all of your products and purchase an entire new “strobing” wardrobe.  I assure you, if you already have highlighting products in your arsenal, you’re good to go. 

If you do need a good strober/highlighter/luminizer, I’m happy to share some of my faves. Here are a handful of the best products for strobing (or whatever you want to call it). ;)

Benefit High Beam

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High Beam is like the OG highlighter. It’s a liquid, so a little goes a long way! I like to cocktail a few drops of this pinkish pearlescent goodness with my primer to create that lit-from-within effect. It adds a beautiful, but subtle glow when you apply it underneath your foundation. Or go big a dab it right on your cheekbones for extreme illumination.

MAKE UP FOR EVER Diamond Powder

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If you’re really into shimmer, this is the product for you. It’s technically a powder, but this fine-milled dust appears flawlessly diffused, not cakey. Diamond Powder combines both the pearly iridescence of MUFE’s Star Powder and the brightness of a glitter. It is almost entirely composed of pure synthetic mother-of-pearl. The particles are finer and radiate extreme brilliance.

MAC Strobe Cream

MAC Strobe Cream

If the dewy look is your thing, strobe with this stuff. MAC Strobe Cream will provide all of the luminizing effects while the consistency allows you to cover a lot of real estate quickly. It’s a hydrating cream that’s good to cocktail with your foundation if you don’t want to go full-on shine overload.

NARS The Multiple in Copacabana

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I find creamy highlighter sticks like this cult classic the easiest to work with - especially if your goal is to dramatically accent your cheekbones. Simply draw on all the high planes of your face and blend with your finger. Beautiful and effortless!

Bobbi Brown Sparkle Eyeshadow

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That’s right, I’m telling you to use eyeshadow for face highlight. There are no rules in makeup and you do not need to purchase a separate highlighter if you don’t want to. This one will work double duty for you and look beautiful in the process. Have darker skin? Try the Sunlight shade. If you have a fair complexion like me, go for Silver Moon. Welcome to strobe city!

Ok, I feel better after getting all of that off my chest. In related news, the Kardashians did not invent contouring and don’t even get me started on baking. More #RealTalk on that later. Until then, happy strobing (or whatever)! 

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Stay Smooth this Summer with the Tria Beauty Hair Removal Laser 4X

Mermaid Parade Beach

Summer is officially here! To mark this momentous occasion, I ventured to the Coney Island Mermaid Parade for my first summer weekend in New York. My legs were on full display in my Ariel inspired bathing suit and in smooth shape thanks to the Tria Beauty Hair Removal Laser 4X.

You can get permanent results with this system — the only FDA-cleared laser available for home use. Convenient and easy to use in the comfort of your own home, only Tria uses the same diode laser technology preferred by dermatologists to deliver safe, effective, and permanent results. A sleek, hand-held design and slim handle make treatments extremely simple, and the angled tip gives you enhanced visibility to deliver laser light with expert precision to the treatment area.

I have heard so many wonderful things about this device and am always up for testing products that will make my life easier. After three months of treatment, hair follicles that have been deactivated by the Tria Hair Removal Laser 4X will no longer grow hair. I just recently started testing this at-home laser to see if it lives up to all the hype! I’m pleased with my results so far, but in order to fully vouch for this device, I’m going to continue testing over the next couple months. Can’t wait to be free from having to worry about hair removal! I have a packed summer full of shorts-appropriate activities I can’t wait to enjoy. Stay tuned for updates on my summer journey to the smoothest legs! :)

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Make a Splash this Summer with Stila

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Happy first day of summer, beauties! Of all of the summer 2015 collections I’ve been testing recently, Stila’s Sun, Sea & Splash Collection is one of my absolute favs. From the cooling primer to the liquid lippies that just won’t budge, Stilla’s summer offerings provide everything you need to keep your face looking flawless out in the summer sun.

Aqua Glow Perfecting Primer

Stila Aqua Glow Perfecting Primer

This cooling primer stick delivers a refreshing sensation on the skin while delivering immediate pore-reduction, skin-smoothing, and hydrating benefits. Its minty green tint will also battle redness if you get a little too flushed in the summer sun. Skin is left silky, poreless and even-toned, creating the perfect canvas for your makeup. It’s a great pick-me-up to apply even on days you don’t want a full face of makeup, too!

Aqua Glow Watercolor Blush

Stila Aqua Glow Watercolor Blush

This weightless, water-based blush, in an exclusive netted pot delivery system, providing a sheer splash of color to the cheeks with a rejuvenating cooling effect. Its luminous finish adds a healthy-looking, fresh glow to the skin. It provides the perfect pop of pink (or peach!) to your cheeks for a fresh look.

Aqua Glow Perfecting Bronzer

Stila Aqua Glow Perfecting Bronzer

This lightweight, water-based, lipid-replenishing bronzer provides a sheer veil of sun-kissed color that perfectly pairs with your skin tone. Skin is instantly awakened, softened, brightened and smoothed with a non-sticky, comforting and cooling gel texture.

Stay All Day Bronzer For Face & Body

Stila Stay All Day Bronzer

The perfect complement to all skin tones, Stay All Day Bronzer is a lightweight, matte-satin powder that is ideal for accenting the face and body to perfection. Features are sculpted and shaped with long-wearing pigments that blend effortlessly for a natural-looking result. The sun-kissed, bronze hue adds a touch of sun for a healthy glow all year round.

Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick

Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick

In my book, the Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick is the star of the collection. It delivers intense moisture and long-lasting color that stays in place for up to 6 hours of continuous wear. Stila offers five bold new shades for summers, inspired by the colors of the sunset: Rosa, Como, Bella, Venezia and Amalfi. They’re all really beautiful, but Amalfi is my jam! I’m wearing it in the pic below. Grab yourself some to sport this season! :)

Stila Summer Collection

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Unlock the Secret to Smooth Legs with Veet Hair Removal Gel Cream


[Disclosure: Compensation was provided by Veet via Mode Media.]

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In case you missed it in my earlier post, I’ve partnered with Veet to be a Smooth Brand Ambassador for summer! Veet’s hair removal solutions are the perfect essentials to quickly and easily get rid of unwanted hair.

I’m currently writing this from sunny Florida where I’ll be hitting the beach momentarily! I finally feel like my legs are beach ready thanks to my new Veet products.

My favorite of the bunch I’ve tested so far is Veet Hair Removal Gel Cream! This extremely effective solution for touchably smooth skin lasts for up to twice as long as shaving.

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It also keeps legs softer and more hydrated than traditional hair removal methods. The secret ingredient?  Veet’s essential oils. I’m a huge proponent of utilizing essential oils for skincare, so I was thrilled to learn that it’s included in this stellar ingredient list. Rose oil is one of my favorites, so when I learned this was also infused with rose I was even more eager to try! It has antibacterial properties, softens skin, and smells amazing! Oils like these can also work wonders by improving mood and fighting depression when used in aromatherapy.

Unlike shaving that can sometimes dry the delicate surface of your skin, this formula is designed to actually help restore skin’s hydration levels. It works close to the root of the hair, causing your hair to take noticeably longer to grow back. This means your skin stays smoother for longer, too! In addition to the formula’s enriched blend of essential oils, it’s also paired with a velvet rose fragrance that leaves a delicate scent on the skin. It’s a must have before you hit the beach this summer!

See the difference Smooth can make at www.facebook.com/veet or www.veet.us 

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Turn Your Home into a Spa with ULTA’s Body Benefits Collection

body

I love me a spa day. Regularly visiting the spa can seriously work wonders on your skin. But sometimes… it’s even better to bring that luxurious experience home! Add a glass of wine (or three) and you have the formula for the perfect at-home spa experience.

I have recently fallen in love with the entire Body Benefits by Body Image® skincare collection at ULTA for all of the essential products needed to indulge in those spa-like treatments. Choose from cleansing bath gloves, luxury bath brushes, skin-smoothing beauty sponges, and a 2-in-1 polishing and exfoliating body buff to reveal soft, young-looking skin. The benefits of a trip to the spa, for a more affordable price? Yes, please!

And you’re in luck! I just so happen to have an extra set of spa goodies for one lucky reader. This kit includes the ultimate cleansing, polishing and exfoliating products from Body Benefits by Body Image:

Bath Gloves: These gloves are great for cleansing and exfoliating. They gently scrub your body squeaky clean while the textured nylon provides an invigorating cleansing, leaving you fresh and fabulous!

Luxury Bath Brush: This amazing brush is designed with extra-plush netting…great for cleaning your back and other hard-to-reach areas, giving you glowing skin from head to toe.

Natural-Fiber Loofah: Loofahs are excellent for helping you retain your skin’s radiance. Delicately remove dry or flaky skin to give your body an invigorating clean!

2-in-1 Loofah Body Buff: This product not only exfoliates your skin, but buffs and cleans for a fresh, polished look.

Skin Smoothing Beauty Massager: This sponge creates a rich lather to help smooth and polish, revealing soft, young-looking skin.

But that’s not all. This kit also includes a $250 ULTA gift card (whaaat!) to use for an exclusive day of pampering at The Salon at ULTA, including waxing, facials and more! Follow the conversation on social with #spa4yourskin and #ULTA. And, if you just can’t wait to start feeling more ahh-mazing, head into ULTA now and stock up on the complete Body Benefits by Body Image spa collection!

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Ready to win your own “Spa For Your Skin” kit? Enter via the Rafflecopter widget below! Bonus points if you Tweet your own at-home spa tips at me! Dooo it. ;)
a Rafflecopter giveaway

[Disclosure: This post was sponsored by  Lunchbox, but all opinions are my own.]

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Celebrate Smooth Moments This Summer with Veet Hair Removal


[Disclosure: Compensation was provided by Veet via Mode Media.]

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Flip flops? Check. Pool toys? Check. Smooth, sexy legs? Check!

I am so thrilled to announce that I’ve partnered with Veet to be a Smooth Brand Ambassador for summer! Veet’s hair removal solutions are the perfect essentials to quickly and easily get rid of unwanted hair.

My legs have been in hiding since I moved to New York, but it’s finally time to let them out! I’m ready to make a smooth move and add some Veet to my life.

 

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I’ve been using the Veet Hair Removal Gel Cream and I’m loving it so far! This extremely effective solution for touchably smooth skin lasts for up to twice as long as shaving.

It also keeps legs softer and more hydrated than traditional hair removal methods. The secret ingredient?  Veet’s essential oils. I’m a huge proponent of utilizing essential oils for skincare, so I was thrilled to learn that it’s included in this stellar ingredient list. Unlike shaving that can sometimes dry the delicate surface of your skin, this formula from Veet contains other goodies that can help restore skin’s hydration levels as well. The formula is designed to work close to the root of the hair, causing your hair to take noticeably longer to grow back. This means your skin stays smoother for longer, too! In addition to the formula’s enriched blend of essential oils, it’s also paired with a velvet rose fragrance that leaves a delicate scent on the skin.

Can’t wait to see where my smooth legs take me this summer! Stay tuned for more about the summer-perfect products from Veet as well as my warm weather skincare tips!

See the difference Smooth can make at www.facebook.com/veet or www.veet.us 

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In Honor of Mom: Products That Remind Me of My First Beauty Icon

mom

I get asked all the time who my ultimate beauty icon is.

Marilyn Monroe always comes to mind. Gwen Stefani, even. But the very first and most influential beauty icon in my life was – and still is – my mom.

She was the first person I ever saw apply lipstick. The first to show me how to braid my hair. And the one who brought me to the store to buy me my very first powder compact. She was the style icon that influenced me before I even knew anyone else in the world existed.

So, in honor of Mother’s Day, here are the products that remind me of my introduction to the beauty world… from my first beauty inspiration, my mom:

 

Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Advanced Time Complex Capsules

Elizabeth Arden Ceramide

I remember my mom LOVED these Elizabeth Arden capsules. The oil blend hiding within these capsules provides a serious softening effect on the skin. Mom’s skin still looks great, so I know it works!

 

CoverGirl Clear Mascara

CoverGirl Clear Mascara

This was the very first cosmetic product my mom ever bought for me. I wanted to wear makeup so badly and I don’t think I appreciated the amazingness that is clear mascara back then. Now clear mascara is one of my makeup kit staples. I didn’t realize it way back when, but she was on to something!

 

Coppertone Water Babies SPF 50 Sunscreen

Water Babies

This bottle looks like my childhood. As I’m sure you all have noticed, I have extremely fair skin. My mom used to slather my skin in Water Babies basically every time I left the house. She instilled the importance of sun protection at a very young age. My skin and I are very thankful for that.

 

Maybelline Great Lash Mascara

Maybelline Great Lash Mascara

After all of the mascaras I’ve tested, this classic remains one of my favorites. Before I saw it in all of the “cult favorite” roundups in all of my beauty magazines, I saw it in my mom’s makeup bag.

 

Olay Active Hydrating Beauty Fluid

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This one is also a classic. I remember my mom used to always use the original Oil of Olay beauty fluid, complete with powdery scent and major moisturizing power.

 

Estee Lauder All Day Lipstick

Estee Lauder Lipstick

My mom always encouraged me to express myself and she never stopped me from snooping in her makeup kit. I often created my own masterpieces with her Estee Lauder lipsticks.

 

Queen Helene Mint Julep Masque

Queen Helene Mint Julep Mask

I can remember going to the beauty supply store with my mom to pick up this mask in the peak of my bad skin years. It does a seriously good job of removing blackheads and calming acne. I haven’t used it in a very long time, but this one is worth bringing out of the vault!

 

White Diamonds by Elizabeth Taylor

White Diamonds

This one’s actually a bonus product. It doesn’t remind me of my mom, but of her mom. I know “grandma perfume” has a particularly negative connotation, but I always thought my grandma smelled amazing. I can vividly remember sneaking into my grandma’s room whenever I came to visit to drool over her elegant fragrance tray. Confession: I always snuck a spray of her White Diamonds.

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LORAC Cosmetics Unveils Epic New Summer 2015 Collection

Lorac Crop Summer

Honestly, I’ve never met a LORAC product I didn’t like.

Almost ten years ago, one of the first brow products I used was LORAC’s Take a Brow which I still adore to this day. I met founder Carol (LORAC is Carol spelled backwards!) at BeautyCon a couple years back and she gifted me the LORAC Pro Palette which quickly became a staple in my personal makeup bag as well as my professional kit. I’m also hopelessly devoted to the TANtalizer bronzer.

They really know their stuff over at LORAC so my excitement level for this new launch is at all all time high. Get ready to geek out with me and take a peek at their new products below! The new range includes extensions to the brand’s cult-favorite Alter Ego and TANtalizer franchises as well as a seasonal selection of limited-edition offerings. Behold, LORAC’s Summer 2015 Collection…

 

Alter Ego Highly-Pigmented Lip Gloss

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Embrace your identity and transform your look with a collection of 16 shades – ranging from Girl Next Door to Dominatrix. 

 

Limited Edition Alter Ego Eye Shadow Palettes

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Choose from two irresistible, vibrant palettes, Dream Girl & HeartBreaker, loaded with an array of fun, flirty and wearable shades, ideal for sultry summer looks.

 

TANtalizer Baked Bronzer in Golden Glow

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The new shade extension is ideal for fair skin, or to be used as a highlighter for already-bronzed, darker complexions.

 

TANtalizer Baked Bronzer in Matte Tan

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Baked on terra cotta, LORAC’s Matte Tan Baked Bronzer grants a natural glow perfect for the coveted “no makeup, makeup” craze!

 

Limited Edition Hot & Spicy Collection

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Including everything you need for a sizzling summer: LORAC’s Blush/Bronzer Duo, Alter Ego Gloss in Supermodel and Travel-Size Body Bronzing Luminizer.

What do you think? I love the entire collection. Get it while it’s hot! ;)

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