Boscia’s Luminizing Black Mask. And uh…it really is black.

I’m not gonna lie, yo. I wish it would get a little cooler in Orlando. As I type this, I am lounging on my patio as a breeze cools the 83 degree temps. I know, I know. I should be grateful. I could be shoveling snow. But come on! It’s the holiday season and who could blame a gal for wanting to have a bit of a chill? *pouts*

Anywhoovers, so we all know how much I love Boscia’s Clarifying Detox mask. I’ve been using it religiously for a good two months now. I also managed  to get myself on the highly coveted Luminizing Black Mask. I’ve been wanting to try this mask since I laid eyes on it last year.

Shout out to being able to do facials at home! Now I’ve tried all kinds of masks, y’all. But I have yet to try a black one.

I just knew it would be fantastical. I mean, seriously…can Boscia do any wrong? Not in my book.

What Sephora says about the Boscia Luminizing Black Mask,

“This jet-black, mineral-rich mask creates a unique peel-off effect that delivers powerful detoxifying, purifying, and brightening results. Made with a premiere-quality clay, its deep-cleansing properties draw out dirt and oil. Other natural ingredients go to work exfoliating skin and refining pores. Powerful antioxidants shrink pores, firm skin, and reduce inflammation. Once dried, the mask strips away dead skin, impurities and excess oil to reveal immediate and visible results.”

Like all Boscia products, this mask is without parabens, sulfates, synthetic fragrances and dyes and phthalates. If you find that your skin is super sensitive to most masks, I recommend giving this one a try as it gentle enough not irritate your skin but powerful enough to draw yucky stuff out of those clogged pores. I love how this mask doesn’t sting. I can appreciate the “stinging” effect in some masks but most times, I don’t want to feel that kind of sensation. In fact, I love when I forget that a mask is on. This baby is so comfortable that I accidentally went to sleep with it on.

Crazy, right? I woke up in my morning and felt it lifting from the sides and after a few tugs, it gently peeled away from my face. I was left with smooth skin. So smooth that I didn’t even feel the need to put on a moisturizer. Niiiice!

Pro’s

-It’s fragrance-free.
-Feels cool to the touch and is easy to apply.
-Removes easily.

Con’s

-Is a little on the pricey side at $34.
-Can be a wee bit messy.
-Takes some time to dry. This isn’t a 5-minute mask.

If you’re in the market for it, I would definitely check this mask out. It’s the perfect weekly pick me up for your skin. Especially if the winter weather has your skin a little weary.

Not that I can relate or anything. Pfft. You can grab this baby at Sephora stores or at Sephora.com.

 

Can facial cleansers double as makeup removers?

Soooo, I’m back with another St. Ives product that I can’t believe I’ve never tried. I thought I had given just about ALL of St. Ives products a spin buuuut I guess not. Have you seen this baby in stores?

Retailing for a little less than $4, this gentle cleanser also doubles as a makeup remover.


I am always skeptical of such gimmicks. After all, I’m a beauty blogger and skepticism is one of my finest traits. A cleanser that promises to not only cleanse the skin AND remove makeup must be good enough to cleanse thoroughly as well as remove making without drying out the skin. It’s the kind of product that will only work for guys and gals with certain skin types. The consistency of the cleanser is like a lotion.

In fact, it looks and feels exactly like lotion. But if you were to rub it in your skin, it wouldn’t sink in as effortlessly as lotion does. When rubbed together a bit, it because slightly frothy and creamier. And I do mean slightly.

When thrown on the face and mixed with water, it still feels just like a lotion. It took a ton of rubbing in for me to “feel” like I was cleansing my skin. You know, because, like many, I’m used to cleansers foaming up. But despite the foams and bubbles, I felt like the cleanser really did its job. My skin felt clean and after wiping my face on a hand towel, I didn’t see a left of leftover concealer. Score! It removed my mascara and gel liner with ease too. Eyeliner on the waterline is a bit tricky, though, because if you get it too close to your eyes, you may endure some burning. I’m okay with using a regular oil-based eye makeover remover for the hardcore eye cosmetics.

I’m thinking this cleanser is best suited for those with normal to dry skin. Because it can be a bit emollient, it may be too moisturizing for those with oily skin. I’m sold!

Another win from St. Ives. Woot!

Lovin’ glō•therapeutics Pumpkin Enzyme Scrub. Nom nom nom!

I’ve got pumpkin on my face! Cool, uh? I’ve tried beauty products with all kinds of fruits and veggies in them but this is my first time test driving a skincare product with pumpkin in it.

Speaking of pumpkins…do you like them? I don’t. Pumpkin seeds are just okay, pumpkin bread is no bueno and I’d much rather eat sweet potato pie over pumpkin pie. But I can’t deny how yummy a whiff of pumpkin anything smells. Such is the case with glō•therapeutics’ Pumpkin Enzyme Scrub.

What glō•therapeutics says about the scrub,

“Removes dead skin cell build up and stimulates cell regeneration with granules and

enyzmes that exfoliate without stress or irritation to the skin.”

Some of the scrub’s active ingredients:

-Date Seeds & Jojoba Beads – provide natural, gentle physical exfoliation without stress to the skin
-Zeolite – a porous mineral that has the ability to help trap impurities for removal from the skin
-Pumpkin Enzymes – pumpkin is naturally rich in antioxidant bioflavonoids and vitamin A that assist in breaking down dead and irregular cellular buildup
-Fungal Protease – mushroom enzymes that helps breakdown fats, proteins and carbohydrates
Fruit Enzymes – softens and smoothes the skin
-L-sodium Hyaluronate – (a.k.a. hyaluronic acid) enhances elasticity, lubrication, plumpness and moisture of skin and also has healing properties

$30 will get you a 1.7 oz bottle. Although the directions say that you only need to use the scrub 2-4 times a week, you may run out within a month or so if you REALLY like it. I think this product would be a better bargain if they gave you at least an extra ounce or two. It is certainly one of the most interesting scrubs that I’ve used.

At first squirt, it doesn’t appear to look any different from the average scrub. Until you rub it in…

It has a bumpy consistency. If almost feels like a pot of grits that didn’t cook thoroughly. Slightly creamy but still on the bumpy side. The fragrance, however, is divine….

If you love the smell of pumpkins, you’ll love this scrub. The fragrance wasn’t too overpowering but considering this was the first time I had ever smelled a pumpkin beauty product, I was in love!

If you’ve got super sensitive skin, fret not as I think this scrub does a great job exfoilating without being too harsh. The granules in all of their bumpy fashion feel good when rubbed on the skin, but they don’t hurt. It took awhile to rinse the scrub off but once I did, my skin felt ah-mazing. It didn’t give me a deep cleanse (you know, like how my Clarisonic gives me) but it felt wonderful and is an ideal scrub for pampering the skin before bed.

I’m starting to fall for glō•therapeutics. This brand is slowly but surely rocking my world.

Want some pumpkin in your life? You can grab this scrub online here.

Hello Kitty brush set. How ca-ute!

Ohmigoodness, I can’t stand Hello Kitty’s cutest. I swear It increases by the second. Take this Hello Kitty Beauty brush set from Sephora, for example…

Okay, don’t laugh. It is hella hard trying to take a picture of a metallic brush set without showing my reflection. Still. It’s cute though, uh? I’ve had my eyes on that for quite some time and I am super excited about getting the opportunity to review it. With the holidays coming up, folx are gearing up for holiday finds and this may be one that you  need to add to your list.

Who is this brush set for? An avid Hello Kitty fan, no doubt. But are the brushes up to par?

They’re okay. These are synthetic travel-size brushes. I wish the website actually said that because I’m pretty sure many folx purchased without knowing the the brushes would be so small. I like travel size brushes. But of course, only for traveling. The best thing about these brushes?

Each brush let’s you know its function. That’s pretty groovy. The brushes include:

– Face Brush
– Eyeshadow Brush
– Shader/Blending Brush
– Angled Eyeliner Brush
– Lip Brush

They feel good. While they aren’t super scratchy they aren’t insanely soft either. Which is a good thing. The downfall about the brush container is that it can only house travel size items. If you decide to use it for an eyeliner or regular sized brush, it simply won’t fit. That kinda sucks.

That said, I think this is perfect for the Hello Kitty obsessed who don’t have high makeup and beauty demands. For gals who want something to look pretty and don’t require much when it comes to makeup storage, this is perfect.

Priced at $49, it’s a bit on the ‘spensive side, but hey…HK isn’t always a cheap gal.

You can grab this Hello Kitty brush set from Sephora locations and Sephora.com.

Laura Mercier gave me a flawless face!

When approached with the idea of trying out some Laura Mercier products, I so couldn’t say no. I’ve heard nothing but good things about Madam Mercier’s foundations and concealers and was super de duper (name that show) to get the opportunity to review some thangs.

I was asked to test drive the Hydrating Foundation Primer, Creme Smooth Foundation, Secret Camouflage concealer and the Invisible Loose Setting Powder. Now keep this in mind — I am not a regular foundation wearer. Because of my skin’s crazy acne-prone tendencies, I like to keep as much product off of it as possible. Even though I’ve reviewed several foundations before, I am still a wee bit of a foundation newbie. Mascara pro? Yep! Foundation pro? Not even close. Before I go into how everything looked when used together, let’s highlight the team players first.

Coming in at $40 and 1.7 oz is the Foundation Primer.

Okay, I’ll be honest. I never really understand the point of foundation primers. Sure they can smooth out the skin and provide a bit more moisture before applying the foundation, but is it really necessary? I’m not sure if I can answer that question or not still, but I know one thing…this is one dynamic primer. The silky gel-like consistency was lightweight and felt great on my skin.

I like that it’s not silicone-based as primers with that consistency tend to bead up and feel drier on my skin. If I’m going to wear a primer, then I’d much rather rock one that feels hydrating and light.

Then there’s the dual-tone concealer they call Secret Camouflage ($28).

My sample shade is in SC-6 which is described to be best for those with rich, dark with yellow skin tones. I chuckled when I first read that description because yes, while my skin may be rich and dark, I don’t have yellow undertones. Buuuut, I found this concealer to work anyway. While I do wear concealer on a regular basis, it is usually a concealer that is close to my skin tone, not lighter.

Ideally, it is best to go lighter when using concealer and Secret Camouflage did that for. I did, however, find myself only using the darker shade over the lighter one. Still, I think it’s cool that you get two shades. It makes for great mixing for us gals with various shades all over.

Now the star of the show was certainly the Creme Smooth Foundation ($50).

Hold your laughter in, but I don’t think I’ve ever used a cream foundation. How un beauty blogger-ish of me, uh? My biggest fear was that I was going to make a complete mess. But look, Mommy…I’m a big kid! I didn’t make a mess. This creamy dreamy foundation in Toffee Brown was a pleasure to work with. Application was simple and painless. I was shocked at how lightweight the foundation felt throughout the day.

Because it was of a creamy consistency, I was expecting to feel a bit of weight to it. But no, darlings. Nada. In fact, until a coworker complimented me on how luminous my skin looked, I forgot that I had on foundation. For someone who doesn’t wear it on a regular, THIS is the kind of foundation I would prefer. Coverage was phenomenal in that it managed to cover my acne scars and hyperpigmentation. My only gripe with the foundation would be that there doesn’t seem to be many richly hued (coined by Sam Fine) color selections. After my shade, there is only one more. I so think line could cover a few more shades.

And coming in last is the Invisible Loose Setting Powder ($34).

I firmly believe in setting powders. Especially if you’re like me and tend to get a little oily throughout the day. Problem is, most translucent powders end up making me look like a ghost. I still got a bit of a white cast with this powder, but a whole bunch of buffing got rid of it.

Did I buff it all the way off or  is just that good? I don’t knowwww….8)

Now here’s where the magic begins. My skin without foundation.

See that hyperpigmentation?

Application of the Secret Camouflage.

I never feel like I need to applying concealer under my eyes but wanted to give it a try. Looks great!

To apply the foundation, I used a skunk brush…

Dapped the foundation all over.

And bam…

I only applied foundation on one side. Can you tell which side?

Scars covered!

With flash…

In natural light.

Yep, I’m impressed and I see why Laura Mercier has rave reviews all over. While the foundation has a high price point, I’m all about investing in something that I’ll wear every day. Serious foundation wearers may cringe over a price tag, but at the end of the day, if they love it, they’ll buy it and keep buying it. I’ll be going to a few super fancy events this season and can’t wait to rock the foundation and siblings. I’m an eternal fan.

Laura believes there are four steps to create a flawless face—primer, foundation, concealer, and setting powder. Each product has been specifically developed to allow every woman to achieve an incredibly even, smooth, yet natural-looking complexion.

For more information on Laura’s flawless philosophy and tips on how to use each product within each step is located here.

Have you tried anything from Laura Mercier?

 

 

Disclosure:

Compensation was provided by Laura Mercier via Glam Media. I received a sample to review as part of the program. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Laura Mercier.

 

Becca Mineral Blush in Wild Honey. It’s purty!

It’s been forever and a day since I’ve done a review on a blush. Which is madness because I really do wear them. Like once or twice a week. I’ve become such a minimalist in my makeup routine that even blushes get bushed to side. Buuut, I had the opportunity to try a new mineral blush and got re-excited over blushes all over again.

I am a HUGE proponent of blushes and bronzers. I love them so so much. And sometimes a blush isn’t always about POW and BAM. Sometimes it’s about a nice subtle highlight. Such is the case with the paraben-free Becca mineral blush in Wild Honey.

My girls and guys sensitive to talc will rejoice because this blush comes without that too.

According to BeccaCosmetics.com, “BECCA Mineral Blush is a luxury powder for cheeks, imparting natural, luminous colour that is ultra-kind to skin. This longwearing mineral contains a hint of highlight to lift the complexion, with a delicate formula that never appears cakey or chalky.” (source)

The blush feels silky to touch and applies like a dream to the ol’ cheekies.

My favorite brush to apply it with?

My darling ecoTools skunk brush. This brush does a great job at applying blushes effortlessly without applying TOO much. It is great at slowing building up intensity. Of course you can use any brush to apply this blush, but still…skunk brushes rock. It didn’t show up as well in pictures but here’s where I applied the blush…

Just a dab on the apples of each cheek and bam…


Not bad, uh? This is the perfect blush for those who are taking baby steps into blush wearin’ or for folx who want a bit of highlighting without a face that screams, “Look at me! I’m wearing blush.” I can also see this as being a gorgeous wedding blush for women of all skin complexions.

Because it’s paraben-free and infused with Vitamin A, C and E, I’ll ignore the high price tag of $32. You can grab this shade and 4 other mineral polishes from BeccaCosmetics.com.

Boscia Clarifying Detox Mask: Perfect for all skin types.

It’s been forever and a day since I’ve worn a face mask. In a sense that’s a good and bad thing. Good because I haven’t felt like I’ve needed one but bad because my skin isn’t getting any pampering. I think that regular use of a face mask can be beneficial to any and everyone. From us kids with acne prone skin to those of us wanting to keep our eczema at bay and my wrinkle bustin’ guys and girls….face masks can give our faces that extra bit of moisturization and smoothness. Not to mention they just feel hella good! Nothing spells “I don’t really have the funds for a facial but I still want to treat my skin” like an at-home face mask.

I am normally a make-my-own face mask kind of gal but this Clarifying Detox Mask from Boscia has me ob-sessed.

Have you heard of Boscia before? If you’re a lover of skin care products without parabens, synthetic ingredients, fragrances and dyes, you’ve got to get Boscia on your radar.

What Sephora has to say about the Clarifying Detox Mask:

“This  deep-cleansing clay mask contains pure botanicals, herbs, & select ingredients like kaolin clay and phellodendron bark to absorb impurities, control excess oil, detoxify/renew your skin from deep within.

A unique combination of anti-irritants and purifying agents soothe and refine the appearance of pores as powerful antioxidants along with other therapeutic elements revitalize skin and help protect against the appearance of aging. Ideal for all skin types, including sensitive skin.” (source)

 

It’s a simple face mask. It promises no tricks and doesn’t have any extra frills. I appreciate that. Simple is best when it comes to my skin and I’m glad that Boscia’s philosophy falls in line with that. The face mask feels clay-like; nice and thick and doesn’t have any prominent smells.

Right up my alley! Since testing it, I’ve been using it weekly. I looooove how it makes my skin feel. So much that I had to show y’all.

My skin before:

Mask on:

 

FACT: Voguing while wearing a mask makes the results 10x better. It’s true.

 

5 minutes later:

 

Super clean skin that isn’t doesn’t feel dry and tight. This is VERY important as dry skin can irritate my eczema and that introduces a whole ‘nother leap of problems.

PROs
-This mask is ideal for sensitive skin. It’s super gentle!
-Nice consistency
-Fragrance-free. This means A LOT to me
-It doesn’t tingle
-It is easy to apply and rinses thoroughly
-It’s only $25. Epic price for an all-natural face mask

Cons
-Like all masks, you want to moisturize immediately afterwards! Not necessarily a “con” but definitely something to think about.

Yup…only one Con. This mask is that fantastic and if you’re in the market for one, snag this kid from Sephora.

Have you tried argan oil?

Not too long ago I talked about the awesomeness that is maracuja oil. I’ve got another fascinating oil that you may not have heard about. Argan oil grows from the argan tree in Morocco and is rich in Vitamin E. Like most oils from nuts, you can use this on your nails, hair and body. It is practically odor-free and has a non-greasy consistency.

I am absolutely loving these oils. I’m going to play around with making homemade body and hair oils and use argan oil as a base.

This video gives a little more insight about how argan oil is made. And you can snag it from the website. I am usually a grapeseed, olive and jojoba oil kinda girl but I love exploring new oils.

Have you tried argan oil or products with argan oil in it?