Sunday, April 30, 2017

L'Occitane Terre De Lumiere

Bring a little Provencal sunset into your life with L'Occitane's newest fragrance Terre De Lumiere.

The scent is inspired by The Golden Hour , when the sun is just setting, and everything is bathed in a beautiful glow.

Honey and almond notes bring an opening warmth here along with the zip of citrus which lasts briefly in the first spray . Lavender comes in adding a dry , fresh floral/herby feeling  that combines with the honey, which is a note that stays throughout .  Tonka and musk round out the drydown adding some sweetness alongside the honey.  This is not quite a gourmand fragrance but it leans that way.

I tried the Shower Gel and Body Milk so I can't say what the EDP's sillage and lasting power is but I can say that in the body lotion , it lasts long. After an AM application by evening it was still there.  Light to be sure and close to the skin, but still there.

The lotion is moisturizing and also has a bit of shimmer to it. It's very subtle , adding the slightest bit of radiance to skin making it a nice way to wear scent during the day.

L'Occitane Terre De Lumiere Body Milk is $ 27

L'Occitane Terre De Lumiere Shower Gel is $ 20

L'Occitane Terre De Lumiere EDP is $ 78 for 1.7 oz

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Pangea Organics Body Lotion

Earth Day is just past, but as they say Earth Day is every day and Colorado based Pangea Organics new body lotions fit right in.

These new lotions are just right for the warmer weather we're beginning to have. They moisturize well with  shea butter,  organic sunflower seed oil  and cocoa butter but aren't heavy like a balm or cream might be.  They sink in fast and feel light on skin.

These are all lightly fragranced  and smell herbal , each having a touch of the  plant essence of the listed herbs or flowers on the front of the tube .

Indian Lemongrass with Rosemary is citrus-y and cool , French Chamomile with Sweet Orange and Lavender is slightly sweet  with the apple like note of the chamomile and a little citrus ,  Pyrenees Lavender with Cardomom is full of dry , dusky lavender and a little spice.

These are really effective body lotions,  and it's good to know that Pangea Organics uses organic agriculture to reduce the use of pesticides, fungicides and chemical or synthetic fertilizers , along with no sulfates, GMOs or synthetic fragrances in the formula. You get clean products that also work. 

You can learn more at

Pangea Organics Body Lotions are $ 26 each at Pangea Organics  ,  and Amazon 

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

MAC Extra Dimension Blush

New MAC Extra Dimension Blushes are finally here. I've always used the Extra Dimension Skinfinish as blush as well as highlighter. I love them. These new blushes? Easy to love too. They seem better than the last version , at least in my opinion. 

What's unique here is the seamless finish . These It don't sit on skin nor accentuate lines or dryness like some high,semi metallic shimmers can.  They blend right into skin with a good flush of color and shimmer but in a lit from within , more subtle way. 

Blending them out is easy and you don't need to worry about overdoing it as the pigment is medium/full and doesn't go on heavily meaning they are also buildable . 

Shown are Into the Pink and Telling Glow.

MAC Extra Dimension Blush is $ 28 and available now. 

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Hawaiian Tropic 2017- Silk Hydration Weightless & Island Sport

It's time to start stocking up on sunscreen. The sun is shining (at least some of the time over here) and we're out and about more.

Hawaiian Tropic has two lines to keep you covered, Island Sport and Silk Hydration.

Silk Hydration is  a good one that's been around  but gets an upgrade to "weightless" this year. And it truly is. After I sprayed, I sprayed it on again as it's so barely there you think, "did I really just use any?"  If you hate sticky SPF and I think most of us do, this is a great pick. It's especially nice for work days and when you're going out and need protection that's strong but won't be tacky feeling , overly heavy or leave a white cast on skin . There's light moisture and the fragrance is light too. It has that delicious smell but it's subtle and fades away fast.

Island Sport is called Ultra Light , so not weightless but not super heavy either and  both spray and lotion are now available in SPF 50. The cream is medium thickness that sinks in pretty fast but needs some rubbing in and adds some moisture to skin.  The spray feels  a little tacky at first and has more presence on skin but dries and sets well    Both  are water/sweat resistant up to 80 minutes.

All of these are chemical based SPF using avobenzene, homosalate, oxybenzone and octocrylene depending on the formula.

Hawaiian Tropic® Island Sport Lotion or Spray Sunscreen SPF 15 and SPF 30 are - $8.99
 Hawaiian Tropic® Island Sport Lotion  or Spray Sunscreen SPF 50 - $9.99

Hawaiian Tropic® Silk Hydration Weightless C- Spray SPF 15 and SPF 30 are  - $9.99

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Schwarzkopf Gliss Ultimate Repair -Express Repair Conditioner Leave In

A leave in  conditioner is something I use every time I wash my hair.  For me a spray version is a favorite because they usually  the right balance of moisture and condition without any greasiness or heaviness . You don't sacrifice fullness or volume.

I have two high end brands versions that I love and that work better than most anything I've used.  Schwarzkopf's new Gliss Ultimate Repair Express Repair Conditioner works just as well as those at a far less price.

This is a spray leave in , you shake it to blend and apply where needed. I use it  all over except for the root area. It's light on hair but packs a lot of conditioning. Wet hair combs thru after spraying  and it keeps hair in good shape through blow drying and adds shine.  It can also be used on dry hair , a nice feature if you find you'll still some dry or brittle areas.  The ingredients include hydrolyzed keratin for strengthening.

 I like many of products from Schwarzkopf , both Gliss and Essence Ultime lines. It's nice to find that kind of quality, especially for damaged or drier hair, without the big price tag .

Schwarzkopf Gliss Ultimate Repair -Express Repair Conditioner  is $ 5.49 at Target and Walmart

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Kiehl's Kiss For The Cure Butterstick Lip Treatment Duo

Kiehl's is partnering with Bright Pink,  a national non profit dedicated to early detection of breast and ovarian cancer .With their new Butterstick Lip Duo you get two of their creamy , sun protecting lip balms . One is clear, the other rose tinted.

The balms have SPF 25 and moisturizers like coconut (fair trade) , sunflower seed and sweet almond oils, shea and cocoa butters.  They feel great on lips, hydrating but not heavy and have just a little sheen . Simply Rose  has a good bit of tint, it's more than barely there and easily works as a stand along lip color.

They have a light citrusy fragrance and taste from  lemon peel oil and extract.

100% of Kiehl's net profits up to $ 25,000 will be donated to Bright Pink to benefit breast cancer education programs.

Kiehl's Kiss For The Cure Butterstick Lip Treatment Duo is $ 39

Sunday, April 16, 2017

It Cosmetics Confidence In Your Glow Blushing Bronzer

Getting your glow on just got easier thanks to It Cosmetics new Confidence In Your Glow Skin Transforming Flush  Blushing Bronzer .

Instant Nude Glow(top), Instant Warm Glow

There are three shades available that go from light to deeper .  So there should be a color for everyone here.

The lightest Instant Nude Glow is pale nudes and a light bronzed brown. This works best for us paler ladies. Instant Warm Glow is peachy and  I can pull this one off too, although when I have a little more color it will be better. Instant Natural Glow leans  pink with it's middle shade and has a deeper bronzer.

Instant Natural Glow

All begin with a shimmery highlighter as the first color. It's not mega shimmer but you will notice it.  The next two shades are more satin/matte and don't have shimmer. Once blended they ( and you) simply look great.

Nude,Warm , Natural

It Cosmetics call these "Skin Transforming" and it's hard to think that of  with a blush/bronzer. I wasn't going for it until I used one. With just a CC base on I gave my face a good going over with Instant Nude Glow and it was a wow. I really didn't need much more makeup ( and that's rarer than a unicorn for me to say). Bright lip balm and mascara seemed good enough. It somehow smoothes and perfects skin while adding color ( it has Vitamin C and peptides ).   Of course having a warm pop of color on didn't hurt either.

It can be hard to use bronzers , I'll be the first to say it. You need a light hand, to blend well and the right shade, often the hardest part. With more than one shade to pick from, you can personalize it more. Also these blend really well , if you use the new Heavenly Skin One Sweep Wonder Brush or similar you'll only need one pass and a quick blend . Dust on cheeks, forehead , nose .

The new brush, by the way, is awesome. I love  It's brushes and this picks up the right amount of color and sweeps it on easily in one pass.

It Cosmetics Confidence In Your Glow Blushing Bronzer is $ 32

Heavenly Skin™ One-Sweep Wonder Brush is $ 48

Availble at Ulta, QVC and ItCosmetics

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Maryland's Chesapeake Cookbook

In a break from our regularly scheduled program of beauty, today let's talk food. I know you love to eat.

Awhile back my dear friend Kathy and her husband released their third book. Kathy and Neal write a popular food blog called Minx Eats and are based in Baltimore, MD.  I'm so thrilled and proud for/of them.

Maryland's Chesapeake - How the Bay and It's Bounty Shaped a Cuisine is is part history and part cookbook- a look inside  the food and recipes that make for good eating in the Chesapeake area alongside the long history of the region . With the book you can bring all that goodness to your own home and with weather warming up, seafood is starting to become more plentiful for home cooking.

  While I love Crab Cakes , there's more in here than just seafood recipes . I  am itching to try Maryland Fried Chicken and Waffles with Maple Bacon Gravy and Black Walnut Scones with Bleu Cheese and Figs . I even have the black walnuts growing in the backyard.


Recipes were culled from older cookbooks unearthed at libraries and antique markets along with ones from the chef's running some of the area's hottest restaurants.
Maryland Fried Chicken and Waffles with Maple Bacon Gravy

Sound good? Grab a copy at Amazon , Barnes and and

Check out their Facebook here

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Softsoap Eternal Bloom & Blushing Bouquet Moisturizing Body Wash

Spring has sprung in these two new LE scents from Softsoap.

Eternal Bloom is bursting with pear and light florals ( apple blossoms). It's very much a fruity, not sugary sweet,  pear scent and really delish smelling.

Blushing Bouquet is all floral with soft dewy flowers . The brand says May Blossom is the chief fragrance maker here. It's fragrant but light and  has that flowers on a rainy day kind of scent.

Both are very moisturizing with a cream gel formula that's great to take our skin into warmer weather.

Softsoap Eternal Bloom &Blushing Bouquet Moisturizing Body Wash are $ 2.99 each  .

Thursday, April 6, 2017

OGX Damage Remedy + Coconut Miracle Oil Collection

Want super soft, conditioned , healthier hair? This new duo from OGX delivers.

After one use of the  Damage Remedy + Coconut Miracle Oil shamp/cond combo my hair was as soft as it has ever been in recent memory , and this was after heat drying.  I even needed less leave in .  I did get a little less volume  than usual but  I am also out of my favorite bodifying mousse  and my replacement styling product was not up to the task , it's a backup but one that doesn't do much.

Hair is really cleansed well with this and left feeling healthy without any heaviness and I was even able to go another day between washings.

The line uses coconut oil for moisture along with tiare flower and vanilla extract for a pretty but not too strong tropical scent .

In addition to the shampoo and conditioner there is also a leave in Coconut Miracle Oil. Also , OGX is sulfate free.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Elie Saab Le Parfum Resort Collection

Elie Saab's Le Parfum is a favorite of mine, and the newer versions like the EDT that have come along have been quite nice as well.

Now for Spring and the Resort season in fashion we get a beautiful new fragrance, Elie Saab Le Parfum  Resort Collection .

As with previous perfumes for the designer, this is created by Francis Kurkdjian ( my favorite parfumeur) .  It's sunny, warm with flowers and fruits - a fragrance that takes you somewhere a bit more tropical ( unless you already live in Hawaii).

Citrus starts things off with red mandarin and you can never go wrong with an orange note in my book. Add in frangipani, pomegranate , jasmine  and orange blossom and you have a sparking white floral .  These last well through the fragrance and in the drydown a touch of patchouli grounds things.

It is sweet at first but not candy sweet, much more grown up .  That lessens as the florals take hold, where it becomes more creamy  and it just feels perfect for these sunnier days we're having  right into Summer. I've been wearing it non stop since it arrived. I love every note listed so it's no surprise how much I like this.

This has longevity too, unusual for a lighter floral EDT but  welcome. Sillage is light to medium. It smells wonderful but won't travel too far beyond you.

Elie Saab Le Parfum  Resort Collection EDT is LE and  $ 98.00

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Murad City Skin Overnight Detox Moisturizer & EYES UP

Have you ever thought about how much you sit in front of  or look at a screen ? I have in the context of it working my eyes really hard  and causing strain but never my skin.

Murad's new Eyes Up campaign aims to make us aware that all that screen time can be harder on our skin too due to stress and possible blue light emissions. Now the light part you need to research. I've done some reading online and  new monitors seem to be ok but old ones ,maybe not.   Phone screens? I don't know . It's a very interesting topic to be sure .  Murad wants to get people to make an effort to look up from those screens more often. Give your eyes a rest and get some real people interaction, something I fully agree with.

The brand's new City Skin Overnight Detox Moisturizer is launched in coordination with the campaign and is full of anti-agers and antioxidants to help de- stress skin while you sleep. And it's a good one.

This is one of those rare creams that works super fast. My skin looked plumper, smoother and well moisturized the morning after using it. I was impressed.

The cream is fairly thick and it has shea butter so it provides plenty of moisture but it doesn't feel heavy nor did my skin feel greasy, something I worry about as my skin isn't super dry but normal to oily and can break out if something is too heavy.

 It has concentrated  Vitamin C for brightening, Marrubium Plant Stem Cells for antioxidant protection and they are also said to neutralize toxins. Botanicals of sunflower, cucumber and barley are in there for moisture. line reduction and smoothing.

I like that the container is a push plate jar which keeps the cream from any light meaning the vitamin C which is very volatile in light will stay stabilized and active in the jar far better than an open type container.

If you are looking for a new cream to jump start Spring skincare, this is a great pick .

More on screen  skin damage potential here:

Murad City Skin Overnight Detox Moisturizer is $ 70 for 1.0 oz

( Also avail- a nice Vitamin C cleanser that smells fab and a lighter weight Essential C Night Moisturizer shown in top pick).