shu_uemura

I have a confession: this past March, I got a hair smoothing treatment that seriously damaged my hair. I’ve been trying to stay away from chemical-laden keratin treatments so I tried an amino-acid based one. I thought, worst-case, it wouldn’t do much. And it didn’t, in the way of smoothing or humidity-blocking. But it did break my hair.

Can I just say, I’ve never. 

My hair has always been dependably tough. I use a lot of heat, I color it regularly. I live through dry New York City winters and hard tap water. I’ve aged, but my hair has always been strong. So having a head of brittle, broken hair has been a little soul crushing.

Since spring, it’s been Operation Hair Rehab. The regime has consisted of washing my hair just twice a week and using a hair mask every time. I also lowered the temp on my hair wand and spaced out my color a little more.

Over the last three months, I’ve tried over a dozen hair masks and I can tell you this with absolute certainty: this Shu Uemura wins HANDS DOWN. After just one use, my hair felt almost completely restored. It defied my expectations, which were high anyway given my love and loyalty to the brand. (I’m addicted to their time-saving blow dry oil.)

How It Works: The unique formula binds the hair cuticle and cortex together, making the hair whole again, able to fend off further damage.

What You See Immediately: Smooth, silky hair that looks and feels healthy.

What You See Over Time: Healed hair with strength and renewed life, able to take environmental and chemical beatings, if you must.

Key Ingredients: Japanese Lotus flower:noted for its ability to bloom in even the most hostile environments. It has been used  for centuries for its moisturizing and softening properties. Ceramides: lipids naturally present in the hair, providing the hair with impermeability, protection and resistance.

This remarkable treatment actually works on all hair types because of its mechanism. It also smells really good. The best part? It only takes ten minutes!

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suncreen_thinksport

I’m cutting to the chase here. I realize sunscreens and their bad chemical raps has confused, and possibly scared, us all. I, myself can’t keep Avobenzone straight from Oxybenzone, but I know I don’t want either of them in my sunscreen. Especially not my kids’ sunscreen. Same goes for paraben, phthalates, PABA, nano-particles and aerosol.

Is your head spinning yet? Has searching the EWR made you more confused?

Just buy this. It’s vetted and it works. I’ve tried all the “safe” ones and Thinksport wins.

It absorbs fast and easily. It truly stays water-resistant for 80 minutes. I like that it has a higher SPF than most– and your kids won’t look like they’re wearing kabuki makeup.

More of my sunscreen favorites here.

 

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solarsciences

I am not a summer person. I perspire easily. I don’t tan. Humidity is not my friend. I try to embrace the carefree vibe of the season but it’s hard when I feel frizzy and shiny, not to mention on the verge of a sunburn after more than 60 seconds in the blazing sun.

Enter this miraculous multi-tasker. It’s a balm. It’s a sunscreen with a factor of 50. Yes, 50! It blurs pores and imperfections like your favorite BB or CC cream and it’s a dream under makeup or alone. The best part? It keeps my skin matte all day. I’ve never.

For me, this has proven to be the easiest way to add major sun protection with the added benefits of my favorite day creams—collagen-boosting vitamin C and anti-aging antioxidant power from CoQ10. So many benefits in one little tube.

Thoroughly vetted, I love this line that is always rigidly tested and formulated without oxybenzone, octinoxate or aminobenzoic acid (PABA). It’s also free of all the nasties like paraben, Phthalates and sulfates. Also, this product is noncomedogenic, is not tested on animals, and it is free of mineral oil, gluten, and fragrance.

#skincarewin

 

 

 

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tomford

I’m pretty good with makeup. I can manage a good smokey eye in under five minutes. I can apply false lashes pretty easily. I can create a believable eyebrow where there is none. But its the gleam I covet. That illusive seeming under-glow— it’s somewhere about the apples of cheeks, highlighting cheekbones and attracting soft light to the face. You know what I’m talking about, don’t you?

Tom Ford has managed to make it easy and attainable with this beautiful creamy duo. Use the pinkish, coral color as a blush or for subtle contour and pat the shimmering gleam on the tops of cheeks and sides of eyes. Mix ’em together. Dot some shimmer on the insides of eyes, the center of your bottom lip over lipstick at night, on your cupid’s bow. Simply gorgeous. Universally flattering and fool proof.

It’s limited edition but still available.

It’s no secret that I love Tom Ford makeup. This blush and illuminating pen are always in my bag.

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urbandecayprimer

I think one of my better traits is that I can admit when I’m wrong. Just yesterday, in fact, I told my three year old I was wrong, and she was right—that yes, if she’s Peppa, than I really am just like like Mommy Pig.

To my big girl’s after school art teacher, I recently admitted “I made a mistake. I totally forgot about class. That’s why Julia was absent.” Sorry. I was wrong. I can say these words.

So I am saying them to you now: I am sorry about:

A: Not telling you about this eyeshadow primer sooner

and

B: Telling you this one was best.

Because it’s not. Urban Decay’s is. By a landslide.

I wasn’t even looking for an eyeshadow primer. But I read an interview with Urban Decay’s rocking’ cool founder, Wende Zomnir, and she was asked if she had a favorite product in her line and she said this one—because it works and she’s just so damn proud of it. Then, that very same week, I went to Sephora for a refill of one of my favorite concealers, and lo’ and behold, they were offering  tiny, cute samples of the UD Primer Potion for just 50 Insider points.

Clearly, it was a sign.

In the simplest terms, this primer does exactly what it says it does. And I don’t even know how. The results are actually stunning. Your eyeshadow just DOESN’T BUDGE. Shimmer stays shimmery. Depth of color doesn’t fade.  Not in the least. I’m good, as in, there is no touch up needed, from 8 a.m. until bedtime. That said, the product actually claims it helps eye makeup stay put for 24 hours.

(For those of you who need that kind of longevity for your smokey eye, all the more power to you.)

I’ve been using the original formula, which has no color. However, I plan to pick up the tinted versions, which can double as a subtle wash of color as well as a highlighter.

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blotterazzi

On the days I have a really good attitude, I view my shiny t-zone as a sign of youth.

But now that temperatures are on the rise, I find myself needing to blot a few times throughout the day. And I do not want to ruin the flawless finish of my new favorite foundation with yet more powder.

Enter these genius little oil-absorbing sponges that take away shine like magic and leave your makeup looking fresh.

The mirrored compact is a nice little bonus.

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