Monthly Archives: April 2011

Beauty VIP of the Week: CND Solar Oil

One of my beauty “projects” is improving the condition of my cuticles. All the paper I deal with day in and day out really gives them a beating but I’m trying to give them some attention each day and so far it’s working super well. I picked up a few bottles of CND’s Solar Oil and I keep them at my desks at work and at home.

All it takes is a minute to apply, I apply it to my cuticles and underneath my nails. I let it soak in (while I’m typing or whatever I’m doing that remove the oil or get it on fabric) and that’s it. Together with CND’s Cuticle Eraser, my nails are looking better than ever. There’s really nothing to these products, you apply daily, rub them and let the products soak in and that’s that. I have to blame Erika at Makeup Bag for this obsession, she really has the most enviable nails ever.

When I took of my polish from last week, my nails still looked glossy and shiny thanks to Revlon’s Crazy Shine I left them bare. The other day I got a nice compliment while I was getting a pedicure and declined a manicure… “they looks so pink and healthy!” Yep, because I’m putting in the time. 😉

What’s your beauty VIP of the week? What product has saved your life lately?

My One Minute Eye, and Obsession with Stila's Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner

As much as I love experimentation, having an easy, go-to eye makeup look can be just as exciting. And, seriously, sleeping just a few moments longer in the mornings is necessary at times.  But I never sidestep the beauty routine completely. I need eyeliner, and I need it bad.

Stila’s got my back in the easy and exciting department. Stila’s Eye Shadow Trio in Ethereal is foolproof and gives you the look of a 10 minute eye, at least. I love the shimmering champagne peach and taupe, they complement my blue eyes and go with everything. And, for those looking for a more budget-friendly version of Ethereal, I noticed the colors look pretty similar to the Wet n’ Wild trio in Silent Treatment (review of that here).

The other critical part of my 60 second eye look is liquid liner. And I cannot get enough of Stila’s Stay All Day version in dark brown. It’s more forgiving than black, is the perfect complement to my Ethereal look, and looks the same at 6pm as it does as 7am. I’m going to start hoarding tubes of this stuff, it’s that good!

Ten or Less: Dove Visible Care Creme Body Wash

I’m usually a bar soap kind of gal but lately I’ve noticed my skin has been getting drier. This has never been a problem for me because I have oily skin but I noticed my arms and legs starting to look a little ashy so it was time to do something about it and Dove’s new Visible Care Creme Body Washes seemed like the way to go.

I’m not a body lotion gal so that wasn’t something I would take the time to do but to tackle the problem in the shower was the perfect solution for me. This new Dove body wash says it gives you more “visibility beautiful” skin in just one week as it contains their highest concentration of Nutrium moisture to date.

Does it deliver? YES, I can tell you this claim is true. I chose the Renewing body wash so I could renew my skin and 1 week after I started using this body wash, my skin has drastically improved. The ashy spots are banished and my skin feels much smoother and softer. It’s not where I want it to be just yet but in 7 days, I’ve seen enough of a change. So much so that I’m going to keep sticking with this.

New! NARS Summer 2011 Collection

NARS Summer 2011 Collection sure feels like a summer collection, and I am loving the preview. NARS presents a range of warm, elegant, shimmering shades with vivid shots of color. Lips are mandarin and hot pink, and nails are bold in sunflower yellow or opaque white. Yes, this is a collection that could only come from NARS. Let’s take a closer look.

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Stila Coconut Crush Lip & Cheek Stain

Speaking of brown lip stains, my favorite lip stain for spring and summer is Stila’s Coconut Crush. Frankly, I’m a little surprised there hasn’t been more talk about this.

I’ve told you before that I LOVE me some lip stains. I have a drawer in my stash that is dedicated to them, I’m that serious about them. But if you looked through my drawer, you would only a few brown stains. Few brands have made them and it’s a shame because they lend themselves perfectly towards a long wearing neutral lip. My favorite brown stain of all time was Urban Decay’s Ink in Naked. I stocked up on that shade when they were getting ready to discontinue it but I’ve always had room in my heart for more brown stains.

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Noteworthy Obsession: Jasmine Beauty Products

Jasmine is a spiritual scent, known to relieve melancholy and have a soothing effect on the inner self. It can be intensely floral, and is so feminine. As the winter to spring transition takes place, I find myself clinging to the scent of jasmine. It’s powerful yet light and I think it is soothing my inner self. That, and the hot yoga I’ve been doing!

Here are some jasmine beauty products worth taking note of:

Pacifica California Jasmine Perfume Roll-on – This scent is everything you’d think with “California” in the name – it’s laidback and has a “I walk along the beach” vibe. The jasmine is more subdued here, woven in with driftwood and a pop of orange. I love the ease of the rollerball, and find that while it starts out strong it dries down to the softest scent almost immediately.  And I usually throw the solid version in my purse for touch-ups throughout the day.

NP Set Jasmine Body Lotion As if you needed another reason to love Target…well, here’s one. A giant tub (16.9 oz) of body lotion infused with jasmine essential oils, available for $14.99. This lotion has a lovely thick consistency but feels light as a feather on the skin. The jasmine scent is a little deeper and long-lasting on the skin. Days I use this, it doubles as my perfume.

Korres Jasmine Lip Butter – Korres Lip Butters are a constant staple in my beauty regimen. They soften my lips, and the Jasmine Lip Butter is the most perfect milky pink lip color. Plus, the scent, a vanilla jasmine, is to die. I can never get enough of this.

Oscar Blandi Olio Di Jasmine Shine Spray Oscar Blandi’s Jasmine collection is easily the best-smelling line of hair care on the market! It’s addictive, really. I use the Olio Di Jasmine Shine Spray to give my hair some shine (used sparingly, and not on the roots!), and  spritz it on just before a swipe of the flat iron. It keeps my hair healthy-looking and feeling, thanks to the Italian Olive Oil housed in the bottle. Did I mention how GOOD it smells?!

I think it’s fair to say I’ve developed a penchant for jasmine this spring. What’s your go-to signature for this time year? Any scents you’re loving?

New! Butter London No More Waity Katie Lip Gloss

I cannot tell you how OVER this royal wedding I am. I am so sick and tired of hearing about their little cottage, who’s attending the wedding and whatever else goes along with this event. Sorry, I could really care less about a royal wedding. I do make an exception for Butter London though because I’m a big fan of this hometown brand and now they’re introducing their first ever lip gloss.

If the nail polish was not enough, Butter London is launching their No More Waity Katie lip gloss this Friday on, Nordstrom and other retailers. It was created by the amazing Nonie Crème to compliment the polish. It is a sheer lavender shade with tiny flecks of lilac glitter to make lips look fuller. The company tried to expand their range with a perfume oil last year (swoon!) but unfortunately that never made it to market so I’m excited to see this gloss. For here’s a swatch:

If you think a sheer lavender gloss is not for you, think again. Dominic with Stila used a shade like that on me once and it changed my mind forever. So come Friday, I’ll be hunting this down instead of sending in my taxes. 😉

NARS Summer Sneak Peak: Bolero Velvet Matte Lip Pencil

NARS Summer is coming soon, and one of the items that I’ve moved up to the top of my must-have list is the new Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Bolero. Anne Hathaway donned this pink-cantaloupe pencil to the LA premiere of Rio, her new animated film. Here’s a breakdown of her entire look by makeup artist Molly Stern:

“The new Bolero Velvet Matte Lip Pencil is the perfect apricot nude, with a dash of baby pink,” said Molly about Anne’s lip color. “We wanted to keep it balanced, but fun and fresh. We were listening to Patti Smith while getting ready – so we incorporated a bit of a rock ‘n roll edge!”


  • NARS Copacabana Illuminator
  • NARS Sex Appeal Blush


  • NARS Daphne Eyeshadow
  • NARS Exotic Dance Duo Eyeshadow (NEW for Summer 2011! For now try the frosted ginger side of Isolde Duo Eyeshadow)
  • NARS Coconut Grove Eyeshadow
  • NARS Larger Than Life Volumizing Mascara


  • NARS Bolero Velvet Matte Lip Pencil (NEW for Summer 2011!)
  • NARS Mayflower Lipstick (NEW for Summer 2011!) (For now, try Happy Days Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil for the combination of shade and shine)

NARS Summer will be available on on April 15! Can you hardly wait?

New! Smashbox Limitless Lip Stain & Color Seal Balms

The new Smashbox Limitless Lip Stain and Color Seal Balms have my heart all a twitter. I’ve been waiting for these patiently ever since Lori Taylor told me about them when I met her… because you know I love lip stains, right?

These new Smashbox stains retail for $23.00 each and come in 6 shades, a good offering for a new a product like this. Honestly, I only have eye for one shade right now, their Nude. Not many brands put our brown lipstains but they should because they make a great neutral base when done right.

It does have the same curious Revlon-like packaging but the balm in this stain is also colored to match. I have to admit, I wondered how similar the two formula’s are and I’ll definitely be putting it to the test but for now I’m just happy another brand is doing a brown.

Just Another Mani Monday: Zoya Caitlin

How’s everyone doing this Monday? Chicago got a burst of summer weather yesterday, too short-lived for my liking, so I’m having a hard time adjusting to the weekday grind. But a beautiful day truly is good for the soul. This week’s manicure, Zoya Caitlin, feels appropriate given the ups and downs in the mercury. The polish, courtesy of Zoya’s Spring Collection, is part spring, part murkey, described as a smokey, purple-tinged medium gray. I think it’s probably the younger sister of Zoya’s Kelly.

I know I’ve picked out a good color for the week when I get comments on it, and this one is a hit with the ladies I work with. This may be one of my favorite polishes I’ve seen all year. Tied with Chanel Black Pearl for that top spot.

What’s everyone wearing on the tips this week?