Current Skincare and Makeup Loves

Makeup Peek
A peek into my current skincare and makeup routine.

Last year I resolved to use up all of the skincare and makeup I had been hoarding during the last few years. Some of it went in the garbage but most of it was used up to the point where my stash got pretty lean, something the old Carla would have hated. The current Carla is pretty happy with the size of her stash, there is plenty of room for new green additions.

I worked my way through quite a few cleansers, exfoliators and moisturizers. Along the way, I developed an interest in oil cleansing. I was reading everything I could on essential oils and carrier oils until I finally started using my own blends to remove my makeup and moisturize my skin. There was a period of adjustment but I found that I really preferred oil cleansing to how I use to cleanse my skin, it was relaxing and left my skin feeling better than ever. I was hooked but more on that later…

As for makeup, there are two things I have not purchased recently: foundation and concealer. I know a lot of you can relate to this, I had so many bottles of foundation and tubes of concealer that I forbid myself from buying any more. For the most part, I stayed the course. Small samples don’t count, right? I still have some foundation to work through but I’m almost at a point where I’m ready to scoop up some products I’ve been dying to try. I’m looking at you, Gressa and Kjaer Weis!

Do you know that feeling when you’ve gone for a long walk and you realize the end is in sight? That’s how I feel about this foundation/concealer “no buy” of mine, I’m glad it’s nearly over!

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Petit Vour Luxury Vegan Beauty Box

Contents of My First Petit Vour Beauty Box
Contents of My First Petit Vour Beauty Box

Part of the problem with developing an interest in green beauty is its price point. For some, the price tag for some products puts them simply out of reach. That is definitely an issue for me with a few products I have been eyeing. This is part of the reason why I signed up for Petit Vour, a vegan and cruelty free monthly beauty box. It’s a chance to try some of the newest in green beauty while keeping my budget in mind… the other reason is I just like receiving goodies in the mail. ūüėČ

For $15 a month (other subscription pricing is available as well), you receive a box with four to five samples from up and coming brands in the green beauty world. You pay at the beginning of the month and your box is shipped mid-month. Petit Vour also lets you earn points much like other subscription boxes that you can redeem in their shop. The big draw for me was seeing the list of brands they are working with, most of the brands I have on my radar right now.

My box took about two weeks to reach me, which was a bit of a disappointment but it is very possible that the holidays had a lot to do with it. I let that go and will re-evaluate with my second box shipping later this month. Once I finally received my box, I was a happy gal… I had a gorgeous, vampy full sized nail polish, a new deodorant to try, a matte peach blush and a sample of a serum from a brand that was new to me. I didn’t receive a 5th product but I assumed the blush was full sized so I considered this fair.

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Everything Old Becomes New Again

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Let the planning of 2015 begin!

They say that if you hang on to a piece of clothing long enough, the old style will become new again. I’m thinking the same can be true for Product Girl in 2015. After a long absence from this blog, this year one of my resolutions is to get to basics and blog like I use to when I first started out almost ten years ago. Back when I blogged about the beauty products I was using simply because I loved them.

Somewhere along the way, I lost the excitement I once had for the beauty world. I use to be able to tell you what year a MAC lipstick was released and what collection it was part of. I could recall what shades were limited edition and what was a repromote. I was a die hard beauty fanatic, going to Nordstrom and Sephora to see what was new just for fun. At one point I would even have a sketch book with swatches of my eyeshadow and lipsticks for comparison. I was that serious about it.

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New! Benefit Majorette Booster Blush

Benefit Majorette Booster Blush
Benefit’s New Majorette Booster Blush

Before I really got into makeup (aka before blogging), I never wore blush… I figured my skin had enough redness so why add to it? It was one of those “once in awhile” things. I tend to go dark with my hair in the fall and I was a full-on “embrace your pastiness” gal until I¬†realized I looked way too pale. I’ve told you this before, I’m not really a bronzer person (I only own 1 or 2 now) but blush is now here to stay… especially a cream blush. It is practically obscene how many cream blushes I own.

My current go-to blush is the new Benefit Majorette Booster Blush, a cream-to-powder matte blush designed to be worn underneath your favorite blush or on it’s own for a pretty peach flush. And will you look at this packaging? ¬†Benefit can always be counted on for its gorgeous packing. It’s love at first blush on every level for me.

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Airbrush Makeup Tips

Airbrush makeup gives you a flawless look to your skin, and it’s incredibly versatile. Once you get the hang of it, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it. However, using a cosmetic airbrush is different than traditional makeup and can take some time to get used to. Follow these tips, and you’ll soon feel comfortable and will be using wielding your airbrush makeup tool like a pro.

First, Practice With Water
Practicing with water will give you a feel for the airbrush and how it works. You’ll be able to feel the weight of it in your hand and get an idea of how fast the product sprays. You’ll know how close to hold it to your face and how much pressure to use. This saves product and mess.

Start With a Clean Face
Because airbrush foundation gives you such a soft, flawless look, you’ll want to start off with a clean slate in order to enhance the look of your skin. Thoroughly cleansing your face before applying makeup will help to make sure your colors don’t look caked on your skin.

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Preserving My Hair Color with the Nexxus Color Assure System

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Right around the time of my last visit at the Robert Leonard Salon here in Seattle, a little package with the Nexxus Color Assure System arrived on my door step. As part of a campaign with Conde Nast, I was asked to try the system for a minimum of 3 weeks and share what I thought about the system, the Nexxus Color Assume Pre-Wash Primer in particular.

The idea behind this collection from Nexxus is simple, if water stays out of your hair, your color’s vibrancy stays in. If you have ever colored your hair in a red tone, you particularly know how true that statement is as red tones are¬†the hardest to keep vibrant. The Color Assure systems starts with the Pre-Wash Primer, then is followed by a shampoo, conditioner and a Glossing Tonic spray for added shine. The shampoo and conditioner are sulfate free and the line features argan, almond and coconut oils as well as white orchid extract.

With the hair shaft shielded with the aid of the oils in the formula of the products, water has a harder time penetrating the hair shaft and lifting the color. Makes sense, right?

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New Pharmaca Opening in Queen Anne!

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One of my favorite beauty spots here in Seattle is Pharmaca, an integrative pharmacy that is all about natural health and wellness. It is a fantastic spot to get your green beauty fix as the stores carry brands like Jane Iredale, Dr. Hauschka, Acure and more. This where I discovered one of my favorite blemish remedies, the Sanitas Zapper.

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Here in Seattle, we have 4 stores with a new store opening in the Queen Anne neighborhood this weekend but Pharmaca also has stores in California, Colorado, New Mexico and Oregon. While the Queen Anne store is more retail than a pharmacy, each store features professionals that are always on hand to answer any questions you may have. Wondering if that cleanser your eyeing is suitable for your skin type? Pharmaca’s esthetics can help you¬†with that.

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First CVS Opens in Washington State!

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I never thought I would be writing about a new drug store opening up in my area but here I am… doing it and I’m pretty excited about. For years, the chain most of you know and love known as CVS, eluded the NW. I remember going to LA years ago and stepping into a CVS for the first time and wondering why it had carpet and wishing I had one near me.

Now I somewhat do have a CVS near me! I was invited to check out the store that opened last week in Renton, WA (also home to the Seattle Seahawks training camp) and I have to admit, I was excited. One of the big reasons I was excited? Finally having local access to actress Salma Hayek’s NUANCE line. I’ve seen my beauty blogging friends playing with this line and now I finally can… and can easily restock if I want more.

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I learned a few things about CVS that I thought were pretty cool during my visit. The first being that the chain really wants to give women in particular, a great shopping experience. They do this in a few ways that are immediately noticeable when you walk in the store. The first is the carpet I mentioned earlier.  With the busy woman in mind, particularly for women in heels, carpet makes the sales floor more comfortable to be on.

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Looks That Rock MTV Pre-VMA Viewing Party

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Every year I watch the MTV Video Music Awards, something always happens on that show and I’m sure this year will not be any different. At the very least, there’s some awesome style and beauty inspiration on display. Tonight I’ll be watching the show with all of you and chiming in on Twitter as part of the #LOOKSTHATROCK red carpet Twitter party at 5pm PST.

CVS asked me to host a pre-VMA party to come up with our own #LOOKSTHATROCK so I had a view friends over, served up some chicken piccata ¬†and some wine then gave each of my guests a gift bag with a CVS gift card and some Cover Girl, Olay, Gillette and Crest products to play with. When there’s good food, good wine and beauty products¬†on¬†the table, a good time is had by all. ūüôā

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JINsoon’s Blue Waves of Summer Nail Art

JINsoon Wave Nail Art

Why is it that when you bite all your nails off, you suddenly want to get all artistic with them? I saw this design from Jin Soon Choi, founder of the JINsoon line, and instantly wanted to reach for some nail polish but alas… I have no nails to speak of at this moment, but I will soon. ūüėČ

As summer comes to an end,¬†Jin Soon Choi gives an Impressionistic nod to the blue waves of summer with a simple, DIY design. Here’s how you can create this look:

  1. Apply a base coat like JINsoon Power Coat
  2. Apply JINsoon Cool Blue to the entire nail
  3. Apply an irregular wavy line of JINsoon Poppy Blue diagonally across the nail
  4. Apply JINsoon Blue Iris and JINsoon Kookie White the same way, alternating the order and size of the line.
  5. Finish with a glossy top coat like JINsoon Top Gloss

Expert Tip: Don’t be afraid to smudge/touch the color you applied previously‚ÄĒ it’s part of the look!

JINsoon’s Blue Iris is one of the most beautiful blues I have ever seen and one of those shades you just have to see in person to appreciate, it’s hard to capture such a gorgeous shade like this with a lens. Her entire line is amazing and you can find it online and in SpaceNK stores.