Tag Archives: beauty products

Product Review: 4 stars: Tensage SCA Intensive Serum 40

Word on the Street/Company Claims:

Cryptomphalus Aspersa, a type of snail which has evolved to heal itself with it’s own secreted Glycoproteins and growth factors, is the source for this concentrated anti-aging serum. SCA is used both for post-procedure (when you REALLY have to kick up the healing process) and to heal sun-damaged or aged skin in a daily home-care regimen. This particular product is in ampoule-form, and contains the highest concentration of SCA. Used either daily for 7 days and then one time per week, or once in-office followed by 3 days in a row (then weekly after that), this growth factor promotes healing and skin health. Additional benefits include:

  • Helping to repair skin damage caused by environmental smoke and toxins
  • Helping skin recover from the effects of sun damage
  • Helping skin heal after laser and aesthetic treatments
  • When you just have to look REALLY GOOD: Use this cosmetically elegant treatment Serum 1-2 times a day the week before your upcoming event – this glorious Serum provides a beautiful, brightening and smoothing effect – perfect to prep for a special occasion or event!
The stuff dreams are made of. Thanks little Aspersa!

The stuff dreams are made of. Thanks little Aspersa!

Appropriate for who?:

Those who are concerned with anti-aging or preventative maintenance, those who may be healing from a procedure, dry skin, mature skin

NOT so good for:

Very, very reactive/sensitive skin types may detect tingling when this product is applied. Anyone who experiences irritation should call their skin care provider.

Totally Fabuliz: (Favorite part):

This serum feels like an in-office treatment… but you can have it at home whenever you want! I love this after a dermaplaning! Although it’s got an elegant serum-consistency, it absorbs completely and does not make me feel oily or break out. It feels like it brightens and smoothes after using it once.

Just OK: n/a! I love it.

Needs work: n/a!

Star Rating:

★★★★4 Stars:  Pretty much deserves a Nobel Peace Prize, want it/need it/ have to have it!

Here I'm attemting to demonstrate the consistency... a little hard to see, but there were no snails around at the time!

Here I’m attempting to demonstrate the consistency. A little hard to see, but there were no snails around at the time who I could borrow…

Misc Notes/Other need-to-know’s:

-Depending on how dry I am when I apply it, I can feel a brief tingle or warmth sensation. It only lasts for a moment, and doesn’t bother me. I understand this to be the vehicle, which then evaporates.

-The ampoules can be used in several different ways, ask your skin care professional in what intervals they recommend using it.

-Check out my Post on Biopelle’s Tensage SCA technology here

Bottom Line:

While I still love the technology behind the highly concentrated HUMAN growth factor in TNS Recovery Complex and TNS Essential Serum, this natural growth factor offers a different approach… with a fun-to-use, cosmetically elegant edge.

As far as it feels, this is the stuff dreams are made of. Others who have tried it agree. And who doesn’t love a little instant gratification, backed with some good anti-aging science??

Well done, little snails! We thank you!

STAR RATING KEY:

★1 Star: Might pass this one up

★★2 Stars: Okay for the money

★★★3 Stars: Really nice product, I’d buy it

★★★★4 Stars: Pretty much deserves a Nobel Peace Prize, want it/need it/ have to have it!

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MAC recycles and you get FREE lipstick: Win/Win

Ok, I know for those of you in-the-know, this is super basic info… But I just HAD to put it out there for those who may not know. It’s not fair to keep things like this to yourself (shame on us!!), and I don’t know that I’ve EVER seen it advertised, have you??

Did you know that MAC will take your empty makeup products and recycle them? (They call it the Back to MAC program) A sales associate in the store told me that they make playground equipment with it. Fascinating! And even I, theproductpro, didn’t know about this for a number of years. waaaaaah?

As an incentive: for every 6 pieces makeup packaging that you recycle, MAC will let you pick a lipstick (or eyeshadow, depending on whether you do this at a store location vs online) of your choice FOR FREE*!

*The exception is the VIVA GLAM line, (All proceeds from VIVA GLAM sales go toward helping women, men and children living with/affected by HIV and AIDS).

The most helpful thing about this in my opinion: 

If you have OLD products (yes, its time to let them go) or colors that you just aren’t nuts about: recycle those bad boys and breathe some new life into your collection with FREE PRODUCT! Yeah!!

On the website, MAC’s own ‘Primary Packaging’ is accepted, including:

Empty Compacts

Tubes (lipglass, lipstick, liquid liner, paint tubes, etc.)

Empty mascaras

Empty foundation tubes, bottles, and jars

Here's my recycle haul

Here’s my recycle haul… FREE lipstick: here I come!!

HOWEVER, the girls at the location near me say this (and you didn’t hear it from me!): You can bring in anything that involves plastic.

They tell me that this INCLUDES the empty makeup remover wipes package AND empty Lash containers.

My response to this was: “Do you have any idea how many of these I have thrown out over the years??” waaaaaahhh!

…So if you weren’t before, now you too are empowered with this knowledge. Enjoy that. And your free lipstick!

Until next time, Stay Fabulous My friends!

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Product Review: Skinceuticals Physical Fusion UV Defense SPF 50

Word on the Street/Company Claims:

“This groundbreaking, weightless, 100% physical sunscreen provides water-resistant broad spectrum protection with transparent titanium dioxide and zinc oxide (Z-Cote®*). Enhanced with artemia salina, a plankton extract, this lightweight sunscreen increases skin defenses and resistance to UV and heat stress.

Color-infused technology enhances natural skin tone and boosts daily radiance.”

Starts off as a lightweight liquid… dries to a satiny powder finish. Consider your world rocked.

Appropriate for who?:

Normal, Combination,  Oily, Sensitive… pretty much everyone!

NOT so good for:

For the darkest Fitzpatrick skin types, I suppose the powder-finish would be less ideal, as it could look a bit light/dry-ish. This being said, it is still better than almost any other physical-only formulation I’ve used on dark skin.

Those who desire a dewey, super-hydrated finish may not prefer the mattefying quality of this product.

Totally Fabuliz: (Favorite part):

Copy-Cats have tried with similar consistencies and claims, but product is unique and fabulous because of it’s PHYSICAL-ONLY, chemical-sunscreen-FREE  formulation. This means more broad-spectrum protection with less irritation- this is normally only achieved with HEAVY, white creams!

Just OK:

I wish the larger, limited-edition 4.2 fl oz size could be available all year round!!

Size DOES matter... pictured here is the limited edition mega-size, next to the regular 1.7 fl oz

Size DOES matter… pictured here is the limited edition mega-size, next to the regular 1.7 fl oz

Needs work:

The smaller, ‘regular’ 1.7 fl oz has a screw-on top. I’d love to see the flip top from the limited edition size make it’s way to this always-available version.

Star Rating:

4 STARS!!!★★★★

★1 Star: Might pass this one up

★★2 Stars: Okay for the money

★★★3 Stars: Really nice product, I’d buy it

★★★★4 Stars: Pretty much deserves a Nobel Peace Prize, want it/need it/ have to have it!

Misc Notes/Other need-to-know’s:

-Shake it before you use it, so it mixes up thoroughly.

-I’m obsessed with this very-slightly tinted formulation because takes the “white” out of a titanium/zinc sunscreen. This product may also be the only sunscreen that men will readily use, because of the clean/non-goopy finish. It leaves a silky, natural and texture afterward, and almost feels like a favorite makeup primer.

Bottom Line:

No, it doesn’t smell like coconuts, and it won’t make your eyes sting either- all of our usual sunscreen-skipping excuses are flattened. Well done, Skinceuticals!

Practice Safe Sun, kids! And don't forget to re-apply!!

Practice Safe Sun, kids!
And don’t forget to re-apply!!

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Product Review: Latisse

Word on the Street/Company Claims:

Longer, thicker, and darker eyelashes can be yours when you apply this bimatoprost opthamolic solution .03% every night to the lash line (like liquid eyeliner).

They are actually not sure why it works- funny, right? In summary, this product was first available as a glaucoma treatment (Lumigan… but was/is used IN the eye as a medication). Basically, a whole lotta glaucoma patients ended up with a whole lotta fabulous lashes! And so after an FDA trial and a repackage (kinda): Latisse was born.

Appropriate for who?:

People who feel like their lashes could be better… and unless you are one of those people gifted with epic lashes: who doesn’t?

NOT so good for:

Those already undergoing treatment for glaucoma, and those who may be having an upcoming opthamalic surgery or procedure,… ask your doctor.

Totally Fabuliz: (Favorite part):

It ACTUALLY works. If you like to put 2, maybe 3 coats of mascara on, you will fall in love with Latisse (and may even find yourself joining the rest of the 1-coat world!) Measurable change takes place over the course of about 16-18 weeks as your untreated lashes fall out naturally and the Latisse’d lashes cycle in.

Just OK:

I would guesstimate that I’ve seen maybe 2 of every 50 patients experience some eye irritation with this product. So while not often, that can happen. Also, there’s a chance of a pink-ness that can develop on your lids. It happened to me, and will go away as soon as I stop using it. Doesn’t bother me enough to discontinue use AT ALL… You can’t stop me now!! MUAHHahahahah (crazy laugh) … ahem… sorry.

The Lid-darkening on me: which doesn't phase me at all. Um have you SEEN my lashes? =)

The Lid-darkening on me: which doesn’t phase me at all. Um have you SEEN my lashes? =)

Needs work:

The disposable applicators are not as user friendly as a tube/wand package would be. (kind of like Revitalash). However,  since Latisse had to get FDA approval… they went over–the-top with safety so they could get approved, fast. The instructions say that one brush is to be used on one eye, disposed of, and then another brush used for the other eye. TWO applicators EACH DAY? I’m thinking: We apply mascara to both eyes every day with only one wand! I understand that its indeed a bit different here because there’s no preservative… but listen: You can almost hear the landfills crying.

Star Rating: 4 STARS!!!★★★★

★1 Star: Might pass this one up

★★2 Stars: Okay for the money

★★★3 Stars: Really nice product, I’d buy it

★★★★4 Stars: Pretty much deserves a Nobel Peace Prize, want it/need it/ have to have it!

Misc Notes/Other need-to-know’s:

Don’t stop using it. Once you have your results you need to keep going! I don’t have a problem with the thought of maintaining though- once you have your fabulous lashes you want to keep them!!

More= Not always better! Don't waste your precious Latisse!!

I had to read this like 3 times, haha! Anybody else?? But in summary: More= Not always better!

Check out my other blog post with additional Latisse info here, including a video of how I like to use my Latisse, (but always follow the instructions of your doctor!)

Click here for Allergan’s official Latisse Page. And PS- Definitely join their Brilliant Distinctions reward program so you can earn points for your purchases… you can get coupons for $25 off, $50 off, and even more if you spend enough or have treatments like BOTOX  Cosmetic.

Bottom Line:

I’m a Latisse-r for Life. Love. Love. Love.

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Product Storage: You’ve got 700 Hairsprays. Now What?

This last week has been a whirlwind. Not only did we list our house for sale, but we had 3 showings AND an open house within 30 hours of listing.

As a product junkie, its an understatement to say that a few things had to be tidied up. But I wondered: How will I ever hide/display all of my endless beauty paraphernalia so people don’t walk out of the house wondering if a mad scientist lives here?

In my next few entries, I’ll share some cheap, cute, and/or creative solutions I came up with to make being a product junkie live-able AND conducive to selling a home:

To start, here is my home spa room on the lower level of the house, home to a zillion skin care products:Image

Baskets? Sure, they’re cute… but not so creative OR cheap (typically). I needed lots of them in this case, and these little guys came CHEAP in packs of 4 or 5 from Ikea. If I did it again though, I might go with THESE which my mom loves for her office storage. I love how clean they look and IKEA has the best prices for the quality (2-packs in varying sizes for $6.99).

The silver metal case on the shelf is really the AWESOME find in this post. It’s from a store called Harbor Freight Tools. Baskets from Ikea, and one of the Aluminum cases I got at Harbor Freight

Baskets from Ikea, and one of the Aluminum cases I got at Harbor Freight

Those who know me may think it’s weird for me to be randomly shopping in this dollar-store-version of a Home Depot, but I resent spending big bucks on utilitarian items. I look at it this way: the more I save here, the more I can spend on skincare and handbags. Right??

Anyway, this aluminum case is perfect to store and travel with makeup, paint/paintbrushes, skincare, and tools too -if you’re into that kind of thing!-  and comes with adjustable dividers and a shoulder strap. Style-wise, it could be a cousin of my expensive Sephora Brand Aluminum makeup kit. It doesn’t feel as high quality as others, but you just can’t beat the price- I actually bought 4! Harbor Freight also offers ‘20% off one item’ coupons, so if you’re stocking up, sign up for their mailing list.

This brings up a good point (if I do say so myself): when you’re looking for a solution, try to think outside the box, or at least try not to default to the most convenient solution.

Here’s what I mean: in a casual google search just now, a metal 36″ ruler at Dick Blick is $11.25. Then there’s our friend Ace, who carries one for $4.49.Image

Of course, sometimes you get what you pay for, and there are always exceptions.

Many times, makeup and skin care supply/storage can often be found where you’re not looking for it: in the kitchen section of a store or maybe the Dollar Spot at Target. You could even re-purpose that collection of fabulous boxes you accumulated when you were on that Louis Vuitton kick (oh, maybe that was just me) but you get the idea…IMG_1174

So the next time you’re looking for a storage solution or a new supply, look around and see what you can re-purpose, and keep your eyes open for the less-likely solution. Getting creative may just make your life easier without spending all of your shopping money!

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