Random Monday post just because…

Quick post on a Monday because this just happened.

I know I’m not the only one who gets excited when one of these lands on her doorstep. I desperately needed a new moisturizer and I like ordering online since there are so many more bonus perks to choose from compared to in-store. Here’s what I got.


Only two items were actually purchased.

I ran out of my Ole Henriken Nuture Me Moisturizer and since winter is coming I can already feel my skin is drying out a little. I’ve been using the Sheer Transformation day and night and I can tell it’s not enough. I also ran out of the Tara Harper daily exfoliating cleanser I’d actually really enjoyed, but I’m always looking to try something new. Since I started using the Belif Eucalyptus Extract Toner, I’ve been wanting to try more from the brand. So I got the Mild and Effective Facial Scrub for some gentle exfoliation.

For the deluxe perks, I got the Ole Henriksen Discover the Glow because I love having the mini Truth Serum Collagen Booster for travel and I’ve wanted to try the Melting Cleanser. I broke out when using the moisturizer included here, but I’ll probably give it to my mom to see if she likes it. I also chose the Bite Beauty trio of lipstick & lipgloss in Kir Royale, a gorgeous berry shade I couldn’t resist, plus a cute little mini mirror.

I wanted to try the Belif True Cream Aqua Bomb as well, so I got a that sample as well. I’ll probably to a review of all the Belif items I’ve tried once I’ve used them all. I’ve tried the Kate Somerville ExfoliKate before and really liked it. But it’s so expensive, I couldn’t bring myself to get the full size. The shades in this mini Smashbox duo were so pretty, and I’ve actually always been intrigued by their Full Exposure palette. Maybe this mini will convince me to get it. I’ve tried another Clinique mini mascara in the past and liked it, I’m hoping I like the High Impact as well. They actually don’t smudge much for a non-waterproof formula.

Lastly, I got a little sample of the Super Restorative Total Eye Concentrate from Clarins, I’m always a sucker for eye cram samples.


And just a few quick swatches of the lip products and eye shadows.

Has anyone tried these products? Thoughts?

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Skincare Reload & some beauty minis.

2015/01/img_8352-0.jpgJust a quick post to share what came in the mail this afternoon! I thought I needed more of my Ole Henriksen cleanser and toner, but I still had my backups in the bottom drawer. Oops. And I definitely needed more of the Truth Serum, but instead of just getting another bottle I thought I’d get the 3 little wonders kit, which also includes the Invigorating Night Gel & Sheer Transformation moisturizer (which I have tried in the distant past). I’ve noticed more fine lines popping up here and there and I really do need something to combat them. I also got a code for a bag of skincare samples, so if I try anything amazing that I just had to repurchase I’ll let you know. I also got some 100-point perk samples, two of which are eye creams since I’ve been on the hunt for something new.

I love seeing a Sephora box on my doorstep. And I can’t wait to start my new skincare routine! If you’re curious about what I’m doing currently, you can find out here and here.

Daytime winter skincare routine

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I shared my nighttime routine recently and wanted to share my daytime routine as well. It’s pretty much a shorter version of my night routine with a few variations. Just for reference, I have combination (oily T-zone/normal to dry everywhere else) skin that is also acne prone.

Step 1: Cleanse.
I use either my Ole Henriksen Aloe Vera Cleanser or the Yes to Carrots Grapefruit Daily Facial Scrub if I need a little more exfoliation. I talked about the aloe vera cleanser in my nighttime post; the grapefruit scrub is nice as well. First off, I love the citrusy smell. It’s a gel-like consistency with tiny microbeads that act as a physical exfoliant. It’s not overly abrasive because the particles are small and I don’t find it to be too harsh for daily use.

Step 2: Tone.
I stick with my Ole Henriksen Grease Relief Facial Tonic for this as well, also discussed in my nighttime post. I just put a little on a cotton pad and swipe it over my face.

Step 3: Serum.
Also in my nighttime post, the Ole Henriksen Truth Serum is some good stuff. Like magically good. So much so that I have to use it day and night. I raved about it in my nighttime post already so I won’t do it again here (even though I wouldn’t mind).

Step 4: Moisturizer.
This can vary depending on what I’m doing with my makeup that day. If I’m just going for powder foundation, I’ll use my Aveeno Positively Radiant Daily Moisturizer. It has SPF 30 for the daytime sun and has a pleasant light scent. It’s not overly greasy and absorbs well into my skin. It’s supposed to even skin tone, but since I don’t use it daily I can’t really speak to that aspect of it. If it’s a day I know I’m having pictures taken and don’t want the added SPF, I’ll use my Ole Henriksen Vitamin Plus moisturizer. It’s super light and it’s marketed towards oily/acne prone skin as well. I used to use this night and day, but I switched to a heavier moisturizer for nighttime because I was getting some dry patches around my nose and mouth. Unlike some of my other OH products this has no heavy scent to it. And on days I’m using my It Cosmetics CC Cream, I skip the moisturizer all together.
For daytime eye cream I’m still using up my sample of the Origins Ginzing eye cream, but to be honest I’m not really seeing a dramatic difference in my dark circles. I’ll finish it up and let you know if anything miraculous happens.

My skin has been really good lately in terms of breakouts, I haven’t had one in several weeks. But, if I am getting a breakout,  I will use the La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo during the daytime to spot treat the blemish. Otherwise, it’s a pretty quick four-step routine. My skin feels great, it’s well hydrated and clear. If you have any other skincare recommendations for the winter season, please share them!

Winter nighttime skincare routine

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It’s been about a month since I’ve started this new skincare routine and added a few new products and my skin has never been better. I have combination/acne prone skin, and up until I recently I was getting some serious dry patches around my chin and nose. Those have all disappeared, along with the breakouts I was getting over the past few months. The overall tone and texture of my skin is also much improved, I’m not getting as much redness around my nose and cheeks. So, here’s what I’ve been doing and using lately that my skin has been loving.

Step 1: Makeup removal.
I’ve been consistently using my Garnier cleansing oil to remove my makeup every night. It takes off everything, including anything waterproof. I actually don’t like using my makeup remover wipes anymore because the last time I did when I was having a lazy day it felt like it was stinging my skin. Although using cleansing oil is a little more time consuming I think it’s worth it.

Step 2: Cleanse.
I’ve remained loyal to my Ole Henriksen Aloe Vera Cleanser that I started using almost 2 years ago. It’s marketed towards acne prone skin, but I don’t find it to be too drying or harsh at all. I usually just use my hands with this, unless I feel like I need a little extra exfoliation, then I use my Clarisonic Mia with the sensitive skin brush head.

Step 3: Tone.
I’ve also been using the Ole Henriksen Grease Relief Facial Tonic in conjunction with the cleanser. It removes any residual makeup & dirt that I might have missed and it feels pretty refreshing.

Step 4: Apply serum.
I recently started using the Ole Henriksen Truth Serum Vitamin C Collagen Booster again, and I have to say this stuff is a game changer. Since I’ve added this to my routine, my skin just looks brighter and more even. My husband actually said, “Your skin is so soft.” I think it’s even helping in terms of my blemishes and breakouts, ever since I started up with it they have been so much better. So much so that I don’t even use my acne treatment as much as I used to. This is definitely a repurchase as soon as it runs out. Just a side note, it does have a pretty strong orangey candy type smell.

Step 5: Treat.
I started using the La Roche Posay Effaclar Duo when my hormonal acne was flaring up this summer. It’s helped immensely and I pretty much haven’t had a bad breakout since. I was using it twice a day all over my face and now I’m down to 1-2 times just in the areas I usually get breakouts. This stuff just works.

Step 6: Moisturize.
I was using the Ole Henriksen (can you tell I love his products?) Vitamin Plus for awhile, but because I’ve been getting dry patches I wanted to get a heavier moisturizer. I decided on Nurture Me, which is targeted towards sensitive skin. It’s a richer cream and very moisturizing, but it doesn’t feel too heavy. It also doesn’t make my skin feel too oily. My dry areas have been banished since using this. And BTW, it also has a strong candy scent, it reminds me of Juicy Fruit bubble gum.
I’ll include my eye cream here as well, which is the Clinique All About Eyes. I’m not super crazy about this product, but to be honest I haven’t been crazy about any eye cream I’ve ever tried. It’s moisturizing enough and I’m not about to waste it, so I’m using it up. Once I get close to the end I’ll probably try something new (recommendations are welcome!).

This routine was worked wonders in the dry, cold weather; I might need to switch things up once summer hits. For now, it’s working. My daytime routine will be coming soon!

Sephora VIB Sale Picks

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I take advantage of the Sephora VIB Sale every year because it’s a good opportunity to restock items I use regularly and get others that are more pricey. I thought I’d share what I was able to grab in-store and also what else I plan to get before the sale is over (I had Ava with me when I went and she was just not having it anymore).

1. Wen Deluxe Healthy Hair Kit (5pc): I recently started using Wen cleansing conditioner again after seeing it on sale on Rue La La and after watching Anna Lee Fiorino, a hairstylist at Chaz Dean Studios who does daily vlogs on YouTube with her husband, Jesse. Seriously, if you’ve watched her videos and seen her hair and her clients’ hair you’ll want to try it, too. I have tried Wen in the past, but I don’t think I was rinsing it well enough because my hair didn’t have that really ‘clean’ feel after washing and my roots still seemed greasy. Anyway, since I’d started using it again over this past maybe month and a half, I’ve noticed a great change in the feel of my hair, it is so much softer and less dry looking. My hair color is also not fading as quickly. Just for reference, I have pretty thick hair and a lot of it. The hair at the crown of my head (all the hair that grows above the level of my ears) is wavy, everything underneath is straight. I’ve also been getting a lot of compliments on the way my hair looks. Using cleansing conditioner has definitely added to the time I spend in the shower, you really have to work the product into the roots and wash it out THOROUGHLY, otherwise you probably won’t look like you washed your hair at all. The results for me are worth it, and I don’t wash my hair daily anyway (I usually do every 2-3 days). I was only planning on picking up a couple of bottles, but one of the associates directed me towards this 5 piece set (3 16 oz. cleansing conditioners, the replenishing mist, & re moist intensive hair treatment) and I thought it was a good deal, especially with 20% off.

2. Ole Henriksen Grease Relief Face Tonic: I love the Ole Henriksen line of skincare, it has really helped to keep my skin clear without feeling like I’m using a lot of harsh chemicals. I’ve used this toner for a couple of years, along with the Aloe Vera Deep Cleanser and Vitamin Plus moisturizer. I actually thought I picked up the cleanser, but realized when I got home that I accidentally got 2 toners. I also wanted the moisturizer, but there were none left in stock. So I’ll probably just order both of those online before the sale is over. I also want to get the Truth Serum Vitamin C Collagen Booster. I was initially introduced to this skincare line when I bought one of their little skincare sets and the collagen booster was in it. I thought my skin looked brighter after using it, but I stopped when I got pregnant. I still have it, but I’m worried it’s expired after all that time so I’m just going to pick up a new one.

3. Kat Von D Tattoo Liner in Trooper: I’ve done a whole blog post just on this product which I will link here.

4. Laura Mercier Smooth Finish Foundation Powder: I just got the Jouer Matt Moisture Tint, but I am still a powder foundation girl at heart for daily wear just because it’s so fast and easy. I’ve been wanting to try something new and after swatching this in the store I wanted to try it. It’s just super finely milled and very soft in feel. I was shade matched by one of their consultants to shade 9, but after looking at the website I think I’m either a 7 or 8. So, unfortunately I’m going to have to go back to do an exchange.

5. Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer: I tried this as a ‘point perk’ and it has since become my favorite primer. I never bought the full size because of the price ($52-ouch!) and would just reserve my little sample for special occasions. I swear, my makeup always looks the best and lasts the longest when I use this primer. It’s just the best. Enough said.

6. Clinique Chubby Stick in super strawberry: This was actually just a 100-point perk, but I thought I’d just throw it in here. I’ve never tried these before, it’s just not a product that has any major appeal to me. If it’s anything mind-blowing, I’ll be sure to let you guys know.

Anyway, if you haven’t taken advantage of the sale it ends on November 10th and you have to be a VIB member. If you already did, let me know what you picked up!