Stay Shine-Free And Glowing This Summer With LORAC!

LORAC Cosmetics is currently one of my favorite brands.  Their color cosmetics are gorgeous and have great staying power.

I was recently sent products to test for my honest opinion that are keeping me fresh and glowing this summer.  They are:

LORAC TANtalizer Buildable Bronzing Powder

LORAC TANtalizer Buildable Bronzing Powder ($32 USD) — Discover your inner glowing goddess with LORAC Los Angeles TANtalizing Buildable Bronzing Powder. Highly pigmented and formulated to offer long-lasting, natural-looking warmth for radiant skin from sun up to sundown. Featuring finishes and hues in matte, satin, high-shine, warm, and cool, there’s a sun-kissed color for every shade of skin.

What I think:  The color above is called Pool Party and it is a light color with a matte finish.  I’m letting my (faux) tan fade away, so this is perfect for lighter skin.  It is warm toned and really pretty on.  I can see myself wearing this in the cooler months when I am pasty white and need some warmth.  It blends really well, too.

These come in 5 shades with different finishes, so if you like a shimmery bronzer — I like both matte and shimmer — there is one for you!

LORAC PRO Blurring Translucent Loose Powder

LORAC PRO Blurring Translucent Loose Powder ($32 USD) — This innovative formula contains natural peppermint and brightens, absorbs oils, and keeps your skin cool and shine-free throughout the day. The silky texture of the finely milled formula applies smoothly and evenly, and helps makeup stay fresh all day by instantly blurring pores and imperfections.

What I think:  I use a setting powder every day, so I was excited to try these powders.  This applies smoothly and doesn’t settle into pores or lines.  I like how it goes on clear and it is not cakey and doesn’t discolor my makeup.  It sets my face and helps the makeup last!

LORAC PRO Blurring Translucent Pressed Powder

LORAC PRO Blurring Translucent Pressed Powder ($32 USD) — This formula is the same as the loose powder, but in pressed form.  Because this paraben-free, weightless formula is translucent, it works on every skin tone and refreshes makeup throughout the day by absorbing excess oils without looking chalky.

What I think:  I love to throw this one in my purse.  Since it is solid, it doesn’t make a mess and is so easy to take out and refresh my makeup. Like the loose powder it applies seamlessly and looks like I don’t have any powder on!

LORAC Alter Ego Hydrating Lip Stain

LORAC Alter Ego Hydrating Lip Stain ($19 USD) — This sexy and playful stain coat your lips in highly-pigmented color and hydrates with nourishing Jojoba Seed Oil, Evening Primrose Oil, Shea Butter and Mango Seed Butter for all day pigment, shine and hydration. Embrace your every identity and dress up your lips with LORAC.

What I think:  These lippies are so hydrating, I think they are somewhere between a stain and a tinted lip balm.  They are very pigmented and look like a cream lipstick on, but last a longtime and feel amazing on. They are available in 10 gorgeous shades.  The one shown is Activist, a pretty berry shade.

LORAC products are available at loraccosmetics.com

Have you tried any of these? What’s your favorite LORAC product?  I know they have new Pro Satin Lip Colors and POREfection Complexion Pens that I hope to try.  Here are my reviews of LORAC’s Beauty and the Beast and Pirates of the Caribbean collections.

Brand Review: Nia (Not Into Aging)

I recently was sent samples of a great new (to me) skincare brand called Nia (Not into Aging).

Nia was designed not only to stop early signs of aging, but to help skin withstand all the stressors that come its way like getting little sleep to looking down at your phone.  The product include patented NIA-114 strengthens skin’s moisture barrier and keeps it radiant.

Here are the products in the line:

Nia Fully Charged Serum X Moisturizer

Nia Fully Charged Serum X Moisturizer ($39 USD)–  This potent, serum-infused moisturizer is a supercharged dose of high-impact hydration and nutrients delivered in one simple, power-packed step. Formulated with skin optimizing NIA-114™, this lightweight, breathable formula strengthens the moisture barrier, smoothes fine lines, brightens skin and fights visible signs of aging.

What I think: I love that this is two steps in one.  Especially in the summer when the humidity makes it uncomfortable to have too much on my face.  The one thing is that this is a bit sticky on, especially the first time I used it.  I shook it up the second time and it was much better.  I can see myself using this every day for brighter skin.

Available at Ulta and Ulta.com

Nia Fake Awake Triple-Action Eye Gel

Nia Fake Awake Triple-Action Eye Gel ($36 USD) — This triple-action gel is a power nap for tired eyes, instantly brightening, smoothing and de-puffing.  Light-reflecting optics visibly diminish dark circles, while a blend of skin optimizing NIA-114™ + lifting agents help reduce the look of fine lines.  Formulated to absorb in a flash, with a ceramic tip applicator to cool on contact, so you can fake awake and get on with your life.

What I think: I love eye products that brighten the eyes as they are giving skincare benefits!  I do notice that my dark circles look lighter and brighter.  The ceramic tip applicator is pretty neat, it does cool tired eyes!

Nia Glow On Demand Energizing Illuminator

Nia Glow On Demand Energizing Illuminator ($28 USD) —  This unique, double-duty formula features a breathable matrix of light-reflecting ingredients that brightens and illuminates, restoring natural glow, while a fusion of caffeine and ginger instantly rev up dull, lifeless skin.   Skin optimizing NIA-114™ rehydrates, soothes and smoothes on contact.

What I think:  I really like this.  It gives a really soft glow. I have been using it as a primer under my makeup.  It smooths my skin so my foundation goes on easily and looks flawless.  And a bit of the brightening shines through.

Nia Tech Neck Line Smoother

Nia Tech Neck Line Smoother ($36 USD) —  The repeated motion of looking down at your phone throughout the day can actually cause neck lines.  Keep your neck in check with this lightweight serum and on-the-go massage roller that glides on gently to instantly firm and smooth skin. Skin optimizing NIA-114™ + a blend of lipopeptides help reduce the look of horizontal lines and fortifyskin against Tech Neck.

What I think:  I am pleasantly surprised with this product!  I though it might be sticky like the serum/moisturizer, but it’s not. I love the roller, it feels cool against my skin.  I can apply the product and help it absorb in once step.  And my neck feels a bit firmer with each use.

Nia Wash + Glow Hydrating Cleansing Foam

Nia Wash + Glow Hydrating Cleansing Foam ($22 USD) — Wash away the signs of long days + late nights. Soothing, silky-foam cleanser removes makeup + impurities without stripping skin of moisture to reveal a fresh-faced, natural glow.

What I think:  This hydrating foam cleanser removes all of my makeup without drying it out.  It is easy to use and cleanse day and night.  I like to keep it in my shower.  My skin is glowing and ready for skincare and makeup once I am done!

Nia Sunday Deto Whipped Clay Peel-Off Mask

Nia Sunday Detox Whipped Clay Peel-Off Mask ($36 USD) — This first-to-market purifying foam-to-peel mask is a double detox for skin showing signs of a long week or epic Saturday night.  Rich clay mousse draws our dirt and debris from pores to reduce the appearance of blackheads, then dries to a peel-off mask to lift away dead skin cells for smooth, radiant skin.  Infused with skin optimizing NIA-114™ + exfoliating fruit extracts to reset skin for the week ahead.

What I think:  This is a really fun mask!  I’ve never used a peel off clay mask before and didn’t know what to expect.  It comes out as a mousse and is a bit thin.  I apply plenty so that I can remove it easily.  It only takes about 15 minutes to dry down and peels off quickly.  My skin is soft and my pores are clearer.

These products are available at Ulta and Ulta.com.

Have you tried any Nia products.  Leave a comment and let me know!

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GlossyBox August 2017 Review

Hi all!  I used to subscribe to GlossyBox a few years ago, and decided to give it a go again!  At least for 3 months, anyway.  I subscribes with a 3 boxes for $30 deal.

That deal is over, but if you subscribe through August 31st, you can get a FREE Josie Maran Argan Illuminizing Powder with your first month of GlossyBox!

GlossyBox is a monthly beauty subscription that sends 5-6 makeup, skincare, and hair care products in deluxe or full sizes. It costs $21 per month, less if you purchase 3, 6 or 12 month subscriptions.

The first box I was supposed to receive was July.  But, it’s still on it’s way to me, so I am reviewing August. The items I received for August are:

This is my variation.  Some people will receive the Freeman Beauty Infusion Charcoal & Probiotics Cleansing Clay Mask instead of the Rituals product.  I’m not sure what other variations there are, besides different fragrances for the Bliss Body Butter and I believe another shade of blush.  Some subscribers were able to choose their shade of blush, but I wasn’t.  It may have been because I just signed up.

Lancôme Monsieur Big Mascara

This is the item I was most excited about trying.  It’s a tiny tube, but I will use it all! This mascara really gives length and volume.  My little lashes looked huge! This is one I would definitely pick up if I’m looking for a high end mascara!

Pixi Brow Tamer

I have tried Pixi products (like their amazing Glow Tonic) before, but not the Brow Gel.  I don’t use a lot of product on my brows because they are thick and dark, but I love Brow Gel to tame them.

This works well!  It sets my brows and doesn’t leave them sticky or stiff.  My brows have stayed in place all day and look really nice.  I will be using this every day to keep my brows neat and tidy!

 

This is a pan, not a compact.  The July box included the compact and one blush.  This pan is supposed to join the other blush in the compact.  Hopefully I’ll be receiving my July box soon and will be able to complete it.

This shade is called Pink Beach.  It’s a little light for my skin now, but will work well in the winter and spring. It has more of a matte finish and is really pretty.  The pan is small for a blush.  It looks like the size of an eyeshadow.  I will let you know how they work together when I receive the July GlossyBox.

These both smell amazing!  They are deluxe samples, so I will probably save them for vacations or short trips.  I may stick the body butter in my purse.  I always have lotion with me.

These are both nice, but I’ve tried them before and deluxe bath samples doesn’t have a wow factor!

Doctor Babor Hydro RX 3D Gel Eye Pads

Meh.  I have so many gel pads for eyes that I might use them, but probably will give them to a friend.

My favorite items in this box are the Lancome Monsieur Big mascara and the Pixi Brow Gel.  I will use the blush once I receive the compact.

The remaining three products will be gifted or used on trips.

Altogether this is an okay GlossyBox.  I did really miss the sturdy pink boxes, so am happy to have that too!  I am glad I did the deal and am looking forward to my July and September boxes!

Do you subscribe to GlossyBox?  What did you get in your August box?

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My Beauty Favorites — Week of July 31-August 6, 2017

Another week’s gone by.  My kids go back to school next week and we have been getting ready for that.  We’ve also been having big summer storms in Kansas City, so it is very humid outside!

This week, I have been loving products to clean, refresh and protect my skin in this weather.  They include sweet-smelling bath products, cleansers that will hydrate parched skin and botanical SPF.

Le Couvent des Minimes Botanical Recipe of Love Exfoliating Shower Gel – Orange Blossom ($12, 6.7 fl oz.) — Le Couvent des Minimes Cologne of Love Exfoliating Shower Gel in Orange Blossom combines the exfoliating power of fruit extracts with vegetable-based antioxidants and petitgrain essential oil.

Le Couvent des Minimes Cloister Shower Cream ($12, 6.7 fl oz.) — The blended scent of roses and ripe berries invokes images of a quiet stroll through a blooming garden, the air warm and heavy with late summer.  Essential oils work with vitamin E to support the natural recovery methods of your skin while shea butter delivers intense moisture. Fruit and vegetable extracts exfoliate away dead skin. The creamy formula of this luxurious body wash will leave you feeling silky smooth and smelling as fresh and sweet as a dozen roses.

Le Couvent des Minimes Cloister Body Gel Cream ($18, 7 oz.) — Roses have long signified romance, femininity, passion and even the perfect beauty of nature. But a rose is more than just a pretty face. In fact, roses have been used as an effective antibacterial agent, an antidepressant and even to moisturize dry skin. Blended with the rich antioxidants of ripe berries, these benefits are captured in this cream

What I think: Both of these scents are very fresh and summery! I use exfoliator on my body a lot in the summer.  The orange blossom scent in this one is gorgeous, and it leaves my skin very soft.   The rose and berry products smell so nice.  The rose is the stronger scent, but you can detect the berries as well.  Both hydrate my skin and keep it glowing!

Available at Ulta stores

CeraVe Makeup Removing Cleanser Cloths: ($7.97 on Amazon) —
gently removes dirt, oil, and makeup while ceramides help restore the skin barrier. All CeraVe products contain the vital ceramides healthy skin needs to help restore and maintain its natural protective barrier. Gentle on skin, non-drying, non-irritating.

CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser Bar: ($4.25 at Amazon) — gently removes dirt, oil and makeup without disrupting skin’s natural protective barrier. Unlike any other cleansing bar, it also contains CeraVe Moisturizing Cream to hydrate and nourish so skin is left soft. In a clinical study, CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser Bar was shown to lock in moisture 3 times longer than the leading brand. Non-comedogenic, non-drying and non-irritating. With ceramides and hyaluronic acid. Fragrance free.

CeraVe Hydrating Facial Cleanser:  ($9.97 on Amazon) — It gently removes dirt, oil, and makeup without disrupting the skin’s natural protective barrier. It patented MVE formulation helps essential ingredients penetrate deep into the skin to hydrate and nourish.

What I think:  All three of these products are really gentle on my skin.  I love the cleanser cloths because I am very lazy at night and love using a cloth that will remove makeup and hydrate my skin in one step.  I keep the bar in my shower to easily clean my face.  And the facial cleanser is my perfect first step in the morning to deep clean but leave my face so soft!

Learn more at cerave.com and purchase on Amazon.com or a mass market retailer near you.

Australian Gold Botanical Sunscreen Mineral Lotions SPF 30 & SPF 50 ($14.99; SPF30 – Ulta.com, SPF 50-Ulta.com, ) Feature a non-greasy, antioxidant rich formula that provides UVA/UVB broad spectrum protection. Formula uses Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide to provide a non-chemical sun protection option, with a powder-like matte-finish that’s never greasy.

Australian Gold Botanical Sunscreen Natural Spray SPF 30 & SPF 50 ($14.99; SPF30 – Ulta.com, SPF 50-Ulta.com) A natural spray that delivers a refreshing, powdery-clean feel in a convenient 360° continuous spray. Features a non-sticky, antioxidant rich formula that provides UVA/UVB broad spectrum protection with Certifi­ed Organic Alcohol for a naturally luxurious sunscreen experience.

What I think:  First, these smell really fresh and natural, which I love.  More of a soft floral than a beachy scent, which can be a nice change from other sunscreens.  They both dry down to a matte finish without being greasy.  That’s so nice for doing normal outside activities like shopping and working outside.  It looks like I don’t have sunscreen on when wearing it.  Plus they are water resistant up to 80 minutes, so if you are going swimming, these work so well!

These can be purchased at Ulta, CVS, and Walmart

What products are you loving as we are well into summer?

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Brand Review: OFRA Cosmetics Part 2 — Skincare

I was so lucky to be sent some wonderful OFRA products to review for my honest opinion.  I reviewed gorgeous OFRA cosmetics here. Now, it’s on to the skincare!

I received 4 products to test: Peptide Cleanser, Peptide Silk-C Serum, OFRA X Kim Thai Wanderlush and the Peptide Brightening Mask.

OFRA Peptide Cleanser

OFRA Peptide Cleanser ($24 3.3 fl. oz) is designed to provide gentle yet thorough results for normal and combination skin types. It combines quality ingredients for a deep cleansing of the skin.

I find that this cleanser is amazing for nighttime cleansing.  It removes waterproof and long-lasting makeup well.  It leaves my skin clean and ready for serum and moisturizer.  It has a slight, clean scent to it and doesn’t irritate my sensitive skin.

OFRA Peptide Silk-C Serum
OFRA Peptide Silk-C Serum ($79 1 fl. oz) is a highly advanced product with a premium Peptide base designed to help hydrate the skin producing significant anti-aging results. It includes Kinetin, a plant hormone, to promote regeneration of skin cells.
This is probably my favorite product of the four.  It has a smooth texture, almost like a cream.  It absorbs into my skin right away and leaves a nice sheen.  It also smooths my skin and makes my pores look less noticeable. I have also noticed that the fine lines around my eyes are harder to see!  I use this morning and night under moisturizer. 

OFRA X Kim Thai WanderlushOFRA X Kim Thai Wanderlush ($29 2.2 fl. oz.) —  an extremely velvety, soothing and lightweight moisturizer that quenches skin with intense moisture for long-lasting hydration.  This fragrance-free, non-comedogenic and hypoallergenic cream is suitable for even the most sensitive skin types. Wanderlush replenishes dry, dull skin increasing elasticity for a fresh, youthful appearance. ​

This hydrating cream is fragrance free, which I love.  It is very moisturizing.  It isn’t greasy, but takes a little while to sink in.  I think it will be perfect for the colder weather, when my skin gets drier.  Right now, it’s a nice evening treatment.  When I wake up, my skin is glowing!  And it doesn’t irritate my sensitive skin.

Also, $2 of each unit sold will be going to a charity of Kim Thai’s choosing, which is amazing!

OFRA Cosmetic Laboratories Peptide Brightening Mask

OFRA Peptide Brightening Mask ($59 6.8 fl 0z) — Give combination and normal skin the ultimate beauty boost with this pigmentation reducing treatment mask. It has an oil-absorbing formula with a rich texture. The mask refines and smoothes as it reduces pigmentation revealing clear, refreshed skin.

This is really easy to use. Apply twice a week on a clean face and neck and allow to stand at least ten minutes, then wash off. It has a cooling effect and feels really nice on my skin! Once I remove it, my skin is glowing.  I haven’t used it long enough to see the lightening effects, but will continue using it.

These and much more fab skincare is available at www.ofracosmetics.com

Have you used any OFRA skincare?  What are your favorites?

 

Brand Review: OFRA Cosmetics Part 1 — Makeup

 

I was recently sent a wonderful package of OFRA Cosmetics products for my honest review!  It’s so exciting!  OFRA is a favorite brand of bloggers and vloggers, that I am so happy to be able to test and review them (not to mention add to my beauty collection)!

Today I am reviewing the makeup that I received. And I will be reviewing some OFRA Skincare in a few days.

Here is what I received, and I also have some swatches.  Please be gentle, I don’t swatch a lot, so I’m not great at it!

The products I received are:

Signature Shadow Set – Radiant Eyes ($30 USD)

Eye Gel Primer ($20 USD)

HD Volumizing Mascara ($25 USD)

Eyebrow Gel ($27 USD)

Absolute Cover Silk Peptide Foundation ($39.95 USD)

Americano Bronzer ($35 USD)

Beverly Hills Highlighter ($40.00 USD)

Long Lasting Liquid Lip Set – The Nudes ($50 USD)

 

Signature Shadow Set – Radiant Eyes

I’m going to start with one of my fave items — the Signature Shadow Set in Radiant eyes.  I was so pleasantly surprised by this palette.  I know OFRA for their highlighters and liquid lipsticks, and I had no idea that their eye shadows were so amazing!

All of the shadows have a beautiful shimmer and are warm and gorgeous.  I know that warm browns, bronzes and rusts are all the rage, but I wear all sorts of different colored shadows.  I thought this might be a little safe, but it is so gorgeous on!  All of the colors work well for day or night.  They are nicely pigmented with little fall out when applied.  Beautiful!

Next are the basics, products I (mostly) wear every day.  The foundation is so light, it feels amazing on the skin, like a serum.  But it has great coverage, too.

The mascara gives amazing length, volume and definition.  I’ve only worn it a few times, but I love that it doesn’t flake or run throughout the day.

I’m still on the fence on the gel eye primer.  It is so thin when I apply it, and I don’t know if it helps give shadows staying power.  I put it on today and applied (another brand) matte shadows.  That was a couple of hours ago and you can barely see the shadows on.  I’m going to try it again with my Ofra shadows, and maybe let it dry for a while before I apply the shadows and see what happens.

I don’t usually do my brows (I know, beauty sacrilege).  They are full and dark, and I usually just tweeze them.  I have very fair skin (when I’m not tan) and very dark hair, and darker brows look a little silly on my.  But, I have to say that I used a little of this mousse and it did look nice.  I has a soft texture, but dries down nicely and stays all day!

From left to right is the foundation, eye primer and eyebrow gel.  The foundation is perfect for my skin when it is a bit lighter.  The eyebrow gel is exactly the color of my brows!

Yay, my new loves!  The Americano bronzer is gorgeous!  It’s a warm, glowy bronzer with a little shimmer, but not glittery or orange on my skin.  It’s a soft, silky powder and blends very well.

And, oh the highlighter!  I love the five shades.  You can use them individually or blend some or all together for a custom glow.  So much fun to play with.  Can be built up for a stunning glow!

This isn’t a great swatch, but it does show the pigment, if not the glow.  The highlighting shades are the first 5 and the bronzer is the last one.  It looks dark, but can be applied lighter and blended out.  I love to mix the highlighters together but my fave alone is the second to the left, the pinkish one.  So pretty!

And last, but not least, the gorgeous lippies.  I haven’t tried these before, but have heard wonderful things!  And they did not disappoint!

I don’t usually wear matte liquid lipsticks because they are too drying on my lips.  These aren’t!  They are very creamy on and keep lips hydrated.  They also last for hours, which is amazing!

From left to right is Dubai, Manila (a new shade) and Bel Air.  Dubai is a little brown for me and washes me out, but the other two suit me well!

I am looking forward to trying more of these in the future.  Maybe some cooler or darker shades.

I really loved trying OFRA!  I found some products that I will be using for a long time and I am looking forward to trying others in the future (check out the new Must Have Mattes palette — beautiful!).  You can purchase these and more at www.ofracosmetics.com.

I will be reviewing OFRA skincare in a few days, so stay tuned!

Have you tried OFRA? Which products do you love?

My Beauty Favorites — Week of July 24-30, 2017

It’s finally cooled down in Kansas City.  In in the mid 80’s instead of the high 90’s.  So much better!  My kids have two more weeks of summer and

This week, I am loving products to help give me a summer glow.  These include an illuminating primer, a sheer lipstick, a matte, loose eyes hadow and luxe hair styling products:

LORAC Light Source Illuminating 3-in-1 Primer

LORAC Light Source Illuminating 3-in-1 Primer ($35 USD) — Instantly bring luminosity and life to your face while preserving your makeup throughout the day with LORAC Los Angeles Light Source 3-in-1 Illuminating Primer. This paraben-free, high-pearl primer is infused with light diffusing, soft focus pigments for a silky smooth, luminous glow.

What I think: This is a gorgeous primer for the summer.  I have it in Dusk, which is a bronzey primer and it also comes in Dawn, a pearly primer.  Dusk is so pretty.  I use it to prime my skin and it also gives it a glow underneath my makeup.  My makeup also lasts long when I use it.

Availability: loraccosmetics.com
essence Sheer & Shine Lipstick

essence Sheer & Shine Lipstick ($1.49 USD) — For smudge-proof and defined lips, this creamy yet sheer formula goes on like a balm and deposits buildable color with fantastic shine.

What I think: This insanely inexpensive lipstick a very moisturizing.  It is very sheer and balm-like, but does give a light color.  It is perfect for the no-makeup look.

Availability:  essencemakeup.com
Alima Pure Satin Matte Eyeshadow
Alima Pure Satin Matte Eyeshadow — ($14 USD) Richly pigmented and versatile, Satin Matte Eyeshadow has buildable coverage that can be subtle or bold. You decide. The natural loose-mineral eye shadow gives a gentle matte finish.
What I think: This is a natural, matte lipstick that keeps eyes fresh all summer long!  I have it in this light color, Ash that is a wonderful base or light lid color.
Availability: AlimaPure.com
Shu Uemura Art of Hair Blow Dry Beautifiers

Shu Uemura Art of Hair Blow Dry Beautifiers ($39 each) — Go nude with Shu! The brand’s latest innovation: Blow Dry Beautifiers (available for thick and thin hair), are designed to help women with the ultimate at-home blow dry. Born from the popularity of cosmetic BB creams , these blow-dry balms bring natural, flawless and effortless looking radiance to the hair category.

What I think: Both of these are amazing, one is for thick and one for thin hair. They are used before blow drying to make hair soft and manageable.  I use the thin hair one, and it gives my hair volume and bounce.

What products are you loving this week?