Book Review

Summer Book Roundup

Hi all!  I hope you had a great weekend!  My daughter is in town this week, and we’ve been having fun!

I’m back with a book roundup.  I haven’t done one in a while.  I’m featuring a few books I have received to review.  They are all fun summer reads!

Little Lovely Things

Little Lovely Things — An unremarkable morning commute mutates into an unthinkable tragedy for one family, when Claire Rawlings makes an ordinary decision that results in disaster for her and everyone she loves.

A wife, mother, and soon-to-be-doctor in her final year of residency at University of Chicago hospital, in a race to drop her beloved daughters off at daycare and make it in time for rounds, Claire ignores the troubling signs of an allergic reaction. Finding herself speeding down the highway, on the brink of losing consciousness, she’s forced to pull over.

Moments later, she wakes up on the floor of a gas station bathroom.

Her car – and her girls – have vanished.

A deftly crafted page turner that is as heart-wrenching as it is bursting with life and love, the story of LITTLE LOVELY THINGS unfolds in four distinct voices: devastated yet strong-willed Claire; Moira, the Irish Traveler turned transient abductor who is thrust into instant motherhood; soulful Jay, a recovering alcoholic whose grisly discovery brings him to the center of the tragedy; and finally Andrea, the scrappy take-no-prisoners, wildly talented tomboy who knows only enough to know she doesn’t know the truth of her past.

With an action-packed plot, a deep well compassion for its characters, and thematic chords concerning the wisdom and power of nature, strength of the human spirit, and connectedness of us all, LITTLE LOVELY THINGS marks the arrival of a powerful new voice in the current contemporary fiction landscape in Maureen Joyce Connolly.

Radiant - Eat Your Way to Healthy Skin

Radiant – Eat Your Way to Healthy Skin — For more than 20 years, Hanna Sillitoe suffered from severe psoriasis, eczema and acne. They dominated her life and shattered her confidence. At times she even resorted to wrapping her skin in clingfilm to stop her clothes rubbing against her raw skin. When her doctor told her the only remaining treatment was chemotherapy, she started researching diet and skin, and ultimately changed her life, cutting out caffeine, alcohol, sugar, dairy and wheat, with dramatic results.

Now free from all skin complaints, Hanna is sharing her methods. Beginning with a juice cleanse, Hanna’s plan then moves on to a range of delicious, skin-loving meals including Turmeric and Ginger Chia Pudding, Immunity Ramen, Beet Burgers and even Clean Tiramisu. There is also a selection of homemade beauty products such as Avocado and Honey Facemask and Rosemary and Lemon Salt Scrub. Uplifting and inspiring for those who have been searching for an answer to their skin woes, Hanna’s programme is also suitable for people without specific complaints who just want to improve their overall health and complexion. A recipe for good health and clear skin, from the inside out.

The Big Book of Missouri Ghost Stories

The Big Book of Missouri Ghost Stories — Reader, beware! Turn these pages and enter the world of the paranormal, where ghosts and ghouls alike creep just out of sight. Author Troy Taylor shines a light in the dark corners of Missouri and scares those spirits out of hiding in this thrilling collection. From a headless ghost who stalks the aptly named “Murder Rocks”, to a large hairy monster that roams the banks of the Missouri River, there’s no shortage of bone-chilling tales to keep you up at night. It’s even rumored that the devil himself came to St. Louis in 1949, but nobody knows for sure if he ever left. Around the campfire or tucked away on a dark and stormy night, this big book of ghost stories is a hauntingly good read.

I live in Missouri, so this was a fun book to get!


What books are you enjoying this summer?  I’d love to know!

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anti-aging, Beauty, Skincare

Skincare Sunday — The Ordinary Haul

Hi All!  Happy Sunday!  I can’t believe the weekend is almost over.  It goes by so fast!

I recently picked up a few things at Ulta online.  I was so excited to see that the Ordinary skincare is now available (at least online) at Ulta.   I hadn’t tried anything from the brand before.  I do know that the brand has been at Sephora for a while now, but I’m more of an Ulta shopper.

This is a very affordable brand and the reviews I’ve seen have been really positive.  Here’s what I chose to start with (yes, I’ll be buying more in the future) and the info from the Ulta website:

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Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 ($6.80 USD) — A hydrating formula with ultra-pure, vegan hyaluronic acid. The molecular size of hyaluronic acid determines its depth of delivery in the skin. This formulation combines low-, medium- and high-molecular weight HA, as well as a next-generation HA crosspolymer at a combined concentration of 2% for multi-depth hydration in an oil-free formula. This system is supported with the addition of Vitamin B5 which also enhances surface hydration.

Granactive Retinoid 2% Emulsion ($9.80 USD) — a stable serum of a next-generation retinoid active that achieves better reduction in visible signs of aging than retinol – without irritation. It combines two forms of next-generation retinoid actives in a combined concentration of 2% by weight.

Key Ingredients:

  • Solubilized Hydroxypinacolone Retinoate is a highly-advanced form of retinoid which is, in fact, a non-prescription ester of all-trans direct retinoic acid that offers a multi-fold better effect against signs of ageing than retinol, retinyl palmitate and nearly all other forms of non-prescription retinoid.
  • A sustained-delivery form of pure retinol in a protective capsule system which supports both the delivery and the effect of Solubilized Hydroxypinacolone Retinoate.
  • Both forms of retinoid used avoid the irritation associated with retinoid (including retinol) use while delivering better visible results against signs of ageing.

Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution ($8.70 USD) — The Ordinary’s Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution exfoliates and tones with 7% glycolic acid, amino acids, aloe vera, ginseng, and tasmanian pepperberry. Glycolic acid is an alpha hydroxyl acid that exfoliates the skin. This 7% toning solution offers mild exfoliation for improved skin radiance and visible clarity. The formula also improves the appearance of skin texture with continued use. With its a studied tasmanian pepperberry derivative, this solution helps reduce irritation associated with acid use. This derivative is of plant origin and varies in colour seasonally and this colour variation may be apparent in the formula from time to time. The formula is further supported with inclusion of ginseng root and aloe vera for both visible radiance and soothing benefits. This pH of this formula is approximately 3.6. Glycolic Acid has a pKa of 3.6 and pKa is the most important aspect to consider in formulating with acids. pKa implies acid availability. When pKa is close to pH, there is an ideal balance between salt and acidity, maximizing effectiveness of the acid and reducing irritation. Higher pH numbers in such a case would increase salt which counter-intuitively would make the formula even more irritating than if the formula was more acidic.

I chose these products because I love hyaluronic acid to hydrate, I’ve been wanting to get into using retinol and I heard the every anti-aging regime should include glycolic acid. 

I have already tried the hyaluronic acid and the retinoid.  The retinoid is very gentle, but I think the hyaluronic acid broke me out.  My face was red and splotchy the day after I tried it.

I’m using up other toners now, but I will try the Glycolic Acid toner in the next month or two.


Have you tried any products from The Ordinary?  What’s your favorite?  I’ll be picking more up so I want to know what to get!!!

Beauty, Nail Care

Morgan Taylor Lacquer Rocketman Summer 2019 Collection

Hi all! I hope your Monday is going well!

I received some fun products for my honest review from the Morgan Taylor Lacquer  Rocketman Summer 2019 Collection.  These beautiful brights polishes work so well with the fun new Elton John movie!

Morgan Taylor Rocketman

This adorable mini set is the Rocketman Nail Laquer Mini 4 Pack ($14.95 USD) — In celebration of Rocketman, the story of Elton John’s rise to fame. The collection features iconic shades complemented by Bedazzle Me, a luxe glitter overlay that gives each shade its own moment to sparkle and shine.

This mini pack:
It’s The Shades (hot pink crème)
Tickle My Keys (bright pink crème)
Sir Teal To You (teal shimmer)
Bedazzle Me (glitter overlay)

I love this little set!  It’s great for trying out the Morgan Taylor formula in a few different shades or just for a fun treat for yourself or a gift for someone who loves polish — and Elton John.

Here are the polishes in the collection:

 

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  • Just Me & My Piano – Purple Crème
  • Sir Teal To You – Teal Shimmer
  • Put On Your Dancin’ Shoes – Red Crème
  • It’s The Shades – Hot Pink Crème
  • Tickle My Keys – Bright Pink Crème
  • Glow Like A Star – Yellow Crème
  • Bedazzle Me (below) – Glitter Overlay

 

BEDAZZLE ME
BEDAZZLE ME

This shade looks gorgeous over all of the other shades in the collection!

The full size polishes retail for $9.50. They are available at Ulta.com and SaltEarthSpa.com. All Morgan Taylor Lacquers are fast-drying, 5-free and easy to apply.  I definitely recommend these polishes!


Have you seen Rocketman?  What do you think of this collection?

 

bath products, Beauty, Candles

Bath And Body Works SAS Haul — June 2019

Hi all! I hope you’re having a wonderful week!  I finally got to the Bath and Body Works Semi Annual Sale!

I was almost out of hand soap and body wash, so it was definitely time to stock up!

This is what I received (and the great deals I got plus my $10 of $40 coupon):

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  • Salted Pretzel Milkshake Candle — $8.21
  • Barcelona Sunwashed Citrus Candle — $8.21
  • Seaside Breeze Body Wash — $3.09
  • Cherry Blossom Body Wash — $3.09
  • Mango Mandarin Body Wash — $3.09
  • London White Tea & Sage Foaming Hand Wash — $2.54
  • New York City Champagne Toast Foaming Hand Wash — $2.54
  • Island Papaya Foaming Hand Wash — $2.54
  • Lavender Marshmallow Foaming Hand Wash — $2.54

Total — $35.85 before tax and a savings of $76.65 — Yay!  I hit a candle sale.  The candles were $10.50 before my coupon and only $8.21 afterwards.

I might go back before the sale ends.  My store didn’t have a wide variety of products, so I might try a different one.

Have you shopped the sale this month? What did you get?

anti-aging, Beauty, Skincare

Skincare Sunday — Meaningful Beauty New Eye Masks and Deluxe Starter Kit

Hi All!  I started this series a couple of months ago and only posted once.  Oh well! I still think focusing on new or amazing skincare products each week is a great idea!

This Sunday I’m featuring Meaningful Beauty.  This is Cindy Crawford’s skincare brand (with French anti-aging specialist Dr. Jean-Louis Sebagh).  I have reviewed Meaningful Beauty before, but they have new eye masks and a fun travel size kit that will be amazing for summer trips!

Here is what I received for my honest review:

Meaningful Beauty Revive & Brighten Eye Masques

Meaningful Beauty Revive & Brighten Eye Masques ($52 USD) –This new product claims:

  • Awaken eyes to appear more youthful and gorgeous with Meaningful Beauty‘s Revive & Brighten Eye Masque – ultra-hydrating gel eye patches.
  • Each pair is infused with powerful anti-aging ingredients to visibly smooth and plump eyes – and can also be used on smile and frown lines!
  • Cindy’s supermodel secret: Use daily or as a quick pick-me-up when on the go.

What I think: I don’t usually wear eye gel masks, but I am really enjoying these! They can be worn right under the eyes, at the side of the eyes where crows feet form or even on the smile lines. I find that they firm and brighten wherever I place them, especially under my eyes. Plus, they come with a spatula to make them easy to get out of the jar.  They are a bit slippery, so I press them on to make sure that they stay on the full 10 minutes.

Available at Ulta.com

Meaningful Beauty Deluxe Starter Kit
Meaningful Beauty 7-Piece Deluxe Starter Kit

Meaningful Beauty 7-Piece Deluxe Starter Kit ($79 USD) — This kit targets the appearance of fine lines & wrinkles and dark spots. This comprehensive kit is packed with everything you need day and night for ageless, beautiful skin in every climate or vacation destination.

  • The Meaningful Beauty 7-Piece Deluxe Starter Kit includes:
    • Skin Softening Cleanser
    • Dark Spot Correcting Treatment
    • Youth Activating Melon Serum
    • Environmental Protecting Moisturizer SPF 30
    • Overnight Retinol Repairing Crème
    • Lifting Eye Crème
    • Ultra-Lifting and Filling Treatment

What I think:  This is a great set to try a variety of Meaninful Beauty products and it’s so  nice for travel! My current favorite product in the bunch is the Dark Spot Correctly Treatment.  I apply it on dark spots at night and they fade a bit each morning. I also love the Melon Serum, Overnight Retinol cream and the eye cream.  This is such a beautiful anti-aging line!

Available at Ulta.com

Here’s my photo of the products I received:

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I am posting this on my Instagram @fortyflirtyfab if you want to check it out!

I really am enjoying these products!  Have you tried anything from Meaningful Beauty?

Beauty, cosmetics, Skincare, Subscription Boxes

Ipsy Glam Bag Plus Review — June 2019

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Hey all!  It’s time for my June Ipsy Glam Bag Plus review! This is a subscription box that will always include 5 full-sized items. And the items included are mostly luxe or higher end items. This is such a great value for the high quality items included.

I have pretty much enjoyed this subscription. I usually only use a couple of the items I receive each month, so I’m not sure how long I will keep it.

Here’s what I received for June:

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The total is $276.  That’s mostly because of the 111Skin booster.

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I enjoy PUR’s products, but I am very stocked up on mascara.  I will add it to the pile or give it to one of my daughters.

The Trestique crayon and balm are way to dark for me.  I don’t wear berry shades.  I will be giving this to a friend.

img_0930.jpg This is a black cake liner.  It’s dry, so you ad water to activate it.  I don’t wear black liner, so I will give this away to my daughter.

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Now this is a product I will use!  On the 111Skin website, it states:

Now formulated with increased Vitamin C levels, this concentrated treatment targets signs of hyper pigmentation, age spots, and uneven skin tone. The booster utilises actives which are designed to inhibit tyrosinase production, both reducing and preventing discolouration.

You can mix this with moisturizer or use it alone like a serum.  That’s probably how I will use it at night.  Actually, I will try both ways.  I’m looking forward to looking younger in a few weeks (I hope)!

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This is an Ipsy collab with Tetris. Which is a little strange. This is a cute palette, but not something I will use.  I have so much eyeshadow (and have splurged on a couple of new palettes as birthday gifts for me)  I have a friend in mind who might like this.

So, I will be using one of the 5 products this month.  Sigh.  I’ve been trying to decide if I want to keep this box as I’m not very happy with it. I really like BoxyCharm more.  My June BoxyLuxe box had of course more products, but I could grab out any 5 products and love them more than these.

I’ve decided to give it one more month to wow me.  I’ve seen July spoilers for Pixi Beauty, Huda Beauty and Purlisse.  So I hope I get the Pixi and Huda products, then I’ll be happy.  But, I’ll probably get some weird makeup product I won’t use, LOL!

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Do you get Ipsy Glam Bag Plus?  What did you get this month?

Beauty, Beauty Tools

Beautyblender Celebrates Pride Month!

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To celebrate PRIDE Month beautyblender.com is bringing back some of their favorite limited edition colors to show off how every blend is beautiful!

To help give you a reason to stock up, Beautyblender will be donating 10% of proceeds on all PRIDE products during the month of June on beautyblender.com (https://beautyblender.com/collections/pride)to benefit The Human Rights Campaign and LGBTQ causes.

This is such an important cause — celebrating diversity and inclusivity!  I went to Kansas City Pridefest last weekend to support friends and family members and learned so much.  Plus, I had a lot of fun!

Want to check out one of the newest beautyblenders? It’s a cheery bright yellow one called Joy:

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Beautyblender Joy

Beautyblender Joy ($20 USD) — Sun-kissed warmth on your shoulder, the hint of salt in the ocean air and the soft breeze– all the moments of pure bliss. Bring a little happiness in with the always sunny, Beautyblender Joy. The gorgeous lemon yellow hue is bound to bring a smile to your face. The same exclusive aqua-activated™ material as the original Beautyblender® , you’ll always get a flawless finish and unbeatable bounce.

There’s also a rainbow of choices that you can find here.

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Are you going to pick up any of these great beautyblenders to support Pride?