A Super Glam Lipstick for Three Dollars

When you think of Carmex, your first thought is probably not glamourous. This is a brand that is so deeply rooted in my childhood — the iconic smell in that tub (or squeeze tube) of balm that got me through so many colds and winters. It’s definitely a comfort product for me. However, my view of the brand took a huge turn for glam with the expansion of the Carmex Moisture Plus tints in Sheer Plum and Sheer Berry.

Housed in a skinny tube with a very lipstick-like slant tip applicator, Carmex Moisture Plus is not the same Carmex you grew up with. It still has that familiar smell, but it also has vitamin E, shea butter and avocado butter. It’s nostalgia + major moisture AND glamorous color.

While these only cost $2.99, they look expensive on the lips. A satin finish and a healthy dose of color. I wore the Sheer Berry to my Christmas Eve festivities, and I felt like I was housing the world’s best kept secret on my lips. Spontaneously, I would just blurt to family members, “I’m wearing Carmex. Bet you’d never guess.” My mom was totally into it, and I had to double check my purse at the end of the night to make sure my tube didn’t end up in hers!

Sheer Berry is lovely, but I can’t wait to get a little more vampy with Sheer Plum. There’s no stress involved with these. No prepping the lips to make sure they’re moisturized —  this does the moisturizing for you! A++ Carmex!

Available at CVS for $2.99.

Best of 2010: Our Favorite Lip Products

It was really hard to narrow down our favorite lip products of 2010, because we saw the arrival of so many amazing products. And for as much of a gloss fiend I consider myself to be, most of the lippies I tipped my hat to in 2010 are lipsticks! Here’s a closer look at what we deem to be the best of the best in lips for 2010.

Chanel Rouge Coco – It all began with those gorgeous ads of Vanessa Paradis wearing Rouge Coco in Mademoiselle. I saw these in nealry every bus station and train stop in Chicago for months. Great ads, yes. But, absolutely great lipstick to back it up! I love the color selection and the formula works great on my lips. It’s long-lasting and looks and feels luxurious. My favorite shade, and I now have many, is by far Chintz from the Chanel’s Fall Collection.

NARS Pure Matte – The return of the matte lip for fall was a trend that made me wary, but we both love NARS Pure Matte. These are a fresh and updated version to the matte lip and this formula does not give you “Sahara lips.” Carla got a lot of wear time with Volga, and I rotate often between Bangkok and Tashkent, the perfect rosy and nude, respectively, shades.

Tarte Natural Lip Stain – Tarte’s Natural Lipsurgence Lip Stain revolutionized stains for us by introducing a glossy, moisturizing one this spring. They’ve got jojoba seed oil, vitamins E and C and, like all Tarte products, none of the “bad” stuff. They have a refreshing minty effect as well due to the addition of peppermint oil. We always have one of these nearby — a must if you haven’t tried yet!

Chanel Extrait de Gloss – Before you wonder if I’ve lost that loving feeling for gloss, just know, it’s still there! Chanel’s Extrait de Gloss is easily my favorite gloss launch of the year. The colors are so pigmented, yet sheer and juicy (I’m FULL of contradictions in this one, I know!). I love the nude shades, but the bright pink Insolence has left a lasting impression on me.

YSL Rouge Pur Couture – Carla’s all about this lipstick in Rose Stiletto, a rich berry rose that livens up her lips. The formula is feather light and it glides on the lips ever so easily. This lipstick is packed with pigment for full coverage and doesn’t dry lips out while it gives long lasting wear. Even though it’s got staying power, she can’t help but constantly pull this out of her makeup bag to touch up… the tube is so chic!

Carmex Moisture Plus Tinted Lip Balm – I discovered these in the fall, but now that it’s winter, I’ve been putting these on full-time duty. They’re the Carmex we know and love, but updated and with a tint! A perfect tint of color — a neutral pink or peach option. The fact that these are only $3 blows my mind.

MUFE Rouge Artist Intense – What impressed us the most with Make Up For Ever’s Rouge Artist Intense is the pigmentation and the finishes. Not everyone likes a matte lip, or a satin, etc. — and these come in three different finishes across 50 shades. I really like the bright satin pink (#37) used just slightly on with a clear gloss over it. It’s very brightening to my face. Carla did an awesome ombre lip with some of the nude shades for the MUFE Lips to Love contest. While we didn’t win (tear!), it was fun to do!

Fresh Sugar Plum Tinted Lip Treatment – The original Fresh Lip Treatment is a legend in beauty circles, but with each new release, they keep upstaging themselves! Sugar Plum is my favorite yet because of its light berry color. It’s so flattering on my fair skin, not too dark or bright, and I love the scent and flavor. Can’t get enough of this product.

Ten or Less: Carmex Moisture Plus Tinted Lip Balm

Ladies, I’ve been absolutely blown away by the new Carmex Moisture Plus Ultra Hydrating Tinted Lip Balms. I picked up both shades recently — Sheer Peach and Sheer Pink — and am seriously impressed. Last winter, I must have gone through 3 or 4 tubes of the non-tinted version and am thrilled to see that Carmex expanded the line. Not only do these leave a sheer wash of color they are moisturizing beyond belief…and they have that familiar Carmex scent that we know and love.

I swiped these on the back of my hand — Sheer Peach and Sheer Pink, left to right respectively — and don’t they even look moisturizing? They’re glistening! These are such a great deal. The only downside, if you can call it that, is that you can use them up pretty quickly with constant use. But for $3 a tube, you can stock up on several for under $10.

Has anyone else tried these? They’re a fast favorite of ours!

Ten or Less Thursday: Carmex Healing Lotion & Cream

Sometimes brands put out new products you don’t really expect them to put out. Who would have thought that Carmex would ever come out with body products? I never imagined that they would but they did just that. This month their new Carmex Healing Cream and Body Lotion hit the market. These products definitely fell into the “unexpected” category for me.

Carmex has introduced 2 products: their Healing Cream and Healing Body Lotion. The Healing Cream is the more concentrated intensive product of the two. It is best suited for hands, feet or any other area needing a little more lovin’ than others. Then the Healing Lotion is lighter and intended for daily use. The lotion features vitamin E and aloe and the cream has 9 special ingredients to help heal, moisturize and repair even the driest skin.

Even though I knew it was from Carmex, I was surprised to smell that old familiar Carmex lip balm scent in their lotion and cream. For some reason I can’t explain, I was expecting something different. It is not overpowering in lotion/cream form though, so don’t worry, you won’t smell like Carmex all day. I love the cream in particular on my hands. It absorbs super fast and my hands feel as smooth as velvet. That’s thanks to the dimethicone in it, the same ingredient found in some makeup primers. With all the paper I shuffle on a daily basis, I go through a lot of hand cream and with this I find myself using less as my hands stay hydrated longer. As for the lotion, it has helped bring my skin back to life after a wicked sunburn.

Have you tried the new Carmex Healing Lotion and Cream? At around $6, it’s a pretty good find.

Note: I received a sample of these products.

Winter Beauty Survival

Winter is here. There’s just no getting around it anymore. Chicago is getting hit with its first real storm of the season. Temperatures will sink to single digits and I think during my morning commute it’s going to feel like -20 degrees. This is the cold that makes you feel like your face is going to fall off. And I take the bus into work, so I spend about 15 minutes of morning commute (and the same in the evening) walking to/from the bus. Days like this require a special beauty routine.

Here’s how I attempt to keep my skin protected and my face pretty.


Moisturizer: Days like these are just not the time to be skimping on the face moisturizer. Give your skin a healthy layer of lotion and really let it sink into your skin before doing your makeup. I also use a face primer after I apply my moisturizer because I like to give my skin a little extra protection. I take the words “wind” and “advisory” very seriously when I hear them used together. I’ve really been liking NARS Primer with SPF for winter days. Which brings me to my next point…

Sunscreen: It’s a myth that you need visible, yellow sun to get sun damage. I got one of the worst sunburns on my nose ever from snow! In fact, a combo of sunny sun and bright white snow is horrible. I don’t skimp on this either.


Pick Your Battles: You can’t have it all on these days. What looks great when you leave your house will soon be demolished by the torrential wind. My eyes water a lot and the wind just gets the tears flowing. So I do eyeliner only on the upper lid (if I do it at all) – and I choose wisely. A MAC fluidline or Bobbi Brown gel liner does the trick for me. And waterproof mascara. I don’t use this often because it’s so hard to get off, but it’s a must. I’ve been LOVING the NARS Larger than Life Volumizing mascara lately.


Rosy Cheeks: Duh, your going to have them anyway. May as well play up your natural beauty. Cream blushes are my winter savior. I like them all year long, but they are doubly amazing this time of year. I like Stila’s Convertible Color and I LOVE Bobbi Brown Pot Rouges – Velvet Plum is my favorite for a rosy flush.

Lips – I stash Rosebud Salve, Kiehl’s #1 Lip Balm, Carmex Moisture Plus – basically all of these and more into every purse, coat pocket and office drawer so that I’m never without.

So that is what works for me. What works for you? And isn’t so difficult to adjust to winter at first? I’ll be good in 2-3 weeks, but right now I’m not ready!

DISCLOSURE: All of the products mentioned in this article were purchased by me recently or during previous winters of my life.

Five Drugstore Beauty Buys You Need

The Product-Girl mantra is that there is no such thing as too many beauty products.  And those are words I live by! To all of my fellow product-lovin’ gals out there, I wanted to introduce myself, I’m Laurie, as the latest contributor to Product Girl and share a few products that have been rocking my world lately.


These five products have become essential to my beauty routine. And the best part about them? They can all be found at the drugstore.

I love rocking a dark lip when the temperatures start to drop, and Revlon’s Super Lustrous Lipstick in Va Va Violet is perfection.  Revlon released six new shades of this lipstick recently as part of the Passion Fusion Collection, which is appearing in stores now.

Sally Hansen’s Insta-Dri nail polish is a fast favorite over here – literally. This stuff glides on smoothly and dries in a flash. I love Uptempo Plum, a gorgeous dark purple with pink sparkles.

I am a gel-eyeliner junkie and Loreal’s Pencil Perfect Self-Advancing Eyeliner is essentially that, in pencil form. I can’t be without the Espresso shade!

I picked up Boots No7 High Lights Illuminating Lotion on a whim at Target earlier this year and use this stuff constantly! It’s a pearly pink shimmer lotion that works with my sensitive skin. I like to mix it with my primer, sunscreen or foundation – and it just gives a soft, natural glow every time.

Carmex Moisture Plus Ultra Hydrating Lip Balm is different than the Carmex we grew up with. It’s packaged in a sleek, silver tube and has a satin, gloss finish. It works great as a base for lipstick and on its own. This is three dollars well spent, trust me!

Now it’s your turn – any drugstore must-haves you want to share?