Winter 2017 Beauty Wish List

As fall turns to winter and the air gets colder, it’s time for me to look at my current winter beauty essentials and see if there’s anything I may need to edit or add. My beauty routines are adjusted from season to season because my skin tolerates different products according to changes in temperature and humidity. And, well, I also just love trying new products…

Snowflake

Courtesy of Pixabay

I have always been a big fan of drugstore products, and many of them have made their way into my beauty staples. That said, lately, as was the case this last fall, I have been increasingly tempted to explore some more luxury-type items. My skin has gotten a bit drier and bit redder, given the new lack of humidity in my neighborhood, so I am definitely on the lookout for some help in that area. And while my old stand-by blush has done me well for so many years, my aging skin is beginning to not tolerate matte powders quite as well as it has in the past.

Here is my list of candidates for this season:

Laura Mercier Crème Cheek Colour

I have played with cream cheek colors in the past, but they have always made my skin appear quite greasy (with the exception of some cream-to-powder formulations). This time around, though, I’m considering the effects of the current drought situation on my face and thinking that perhaps a creamier compound might actually be favorable. This one gets great reviews on Beautypedia and comes in great colors, even if only a few.

Nars Blush in Orgasm

Yeah, I realize I just moaned about how dry my skin is and how powders are starting to accentuate that, but I’m intensely hoping that the sheen of this product will give my skin some life, rather than dull it down. This is a cult classic, peachy-pink, shimmery wonder that has been on my internal wish list for a long time. We’ll see if I actually give it a try now. Two blushes on one list? I know, I know. Blush is my absolute favorite beauty product of all time! It honestly couldn’t be helped . . .

Lancôme Teint Idole Ultra 24H Foundation Stick Broad Spectrum SPF 21

I haven’t ever been a big foundation addict. For the most part, I try to look natural and not draw too much attention in my daily life. I like to look pretty, professional, and polished, but I am quite fearful of looking too “done.”

I’ve seen many a Youtuber review this product recently, with mixed results (oftentimes disappointing those who are looking for fuller coverage). One thing they have all mentioned though, is how easily it blends. My hope is that it can disguise some redness and perhaps some pores, for a more finished (but still somewhat natural) look.

Sara Happ The Lip Slip® One Luxe Balm

A tempting-sounding combination of jojoba, macadamia, and sweet almond oils, among other things, this lip balm has already made its way into my shopping cart. I first heard MakeupByTiffanyD extol the virtues of this balm in a recent video on YouTube and the finish it gave her lips after application gave me great hopes! I am optimistic that perhaps it can handle my dehydrated aperture.

Jojoba Oil

I haven’t yet decided on the brand, but I know I am looking for a pure, organic formula. I am inspired to try this for cleansing after watching Tasha do a video about her skin care routine on her family’s YouTube channel (in case you’re wondering, yes, I am a bit of a YouTube addict). Although she used olive oil, I am thinking that jojoba may serve dual purposes as both a cleanser and a moisturizer. I love ease and simplicity . . . and fewer bottles on my counter. I am also hoping the fewer ingredients will help calm my dry and finicky visage. As soon as I get my new night-time skin care routine figured out, I will be sure to post about it!

And there you have it: some of the items that I am looking forward to experimenting with this winter. Is it winter or summer where you are? What are you trying this season?

Peace to all. Stay cozy!

*All products listed here are available at Nordstrom.com. This is not a sponsored post and does not contain any affiliate links. I just really happen to like Nordstrom!

Clinique Moisture Surge Face Spray Review

 

I have always been a bit suspicious of facial sprays, especially those that claim to do something. I’m really unsure why I became so curious about this one. Perhaps it was the stellar review on Beautypedia, or my current insatiable need for all things Clinique (nostalgia?). Whatever it was, I’m glad it worked.

Clinique face spray

This is a facial spray that may be used morning or evening, under or over makeup or other skin care. Firstly, I’ll say that the spray itself is surprisingly refined for a pump mechanism. I was preparing for a deluge, when what I actually received was a very light and refreshing mist. Impressive for a non-aerosol spray!

I have been using this spray as part of both my morning and evening skin care routines and I have to say, I enjoy it very much. Not only is it revitalizing in the morning and soothing in the evening, but it does appear to top off the moisture levels in my skin. The blend of glycerin, aloe, and vitamin E seems to impart the last bit of hydration that my skin craves. It dries fairly quickly (while I’m brushing my teeth), so I can commence my makeup routine just five to ten minutes after application. (This is not a fixative spray and it does not make my makeup last longer…just fyi.)

Will this spray change my skin? Probably not, honestly. However, it does feel good to apply, and it does soften my skin just a bit beyond the ability of my arsenal of creams and lotions. If you’re looking for a facial spray that is refreshing a lightly softening, I highly recommend that you try this one. I have enjoyed it so much that I have already spritzed away almost one-third of the bottle, after just 2 weeks! Maybe I can see if they make a larger size…

*This product was on my Fall Beauty Wish List.

Thanks for stopping by! Stay cozy!

Cetaphil Moisturizing Cream Review

Cold weather is coming. The autumn equinox has happened, a chill has returned to the air, and winter is on the way. Something happens to my skin in the fall, it seems to sense the change in the weather a week before, and it begins to dry out. This is the time of year when an old friend of mine re-enters my life after our hiatus of spring and summer.

My trusty Cetaphil Moisturizing Cream is my skin care workhorse during the cooler months.

Cetaphil Moisturizing Cream

I discovered this product several years ago when my son was an infant and suffered from mild eczema. In addition to using the prescription creams we were given, we were also tasked with diligently applying a fragrance-free moisturizing cream twice a day, every day. This led to auditioning countless creams and lotions with the hope of finding one that would actually retain moisture in my son’s skin. This was one of the first few we tried, and it was the one we always went back to after every subsequent failure, until we finally decided that no other cream worked better for his particular skin.

Being the mother of an infant at the time, my own evening skin care routine went from a 5 step process in the sanctuary of my bathroom to a 2 step process that occurred wherever my son was. Baby wipes and Cetaphil cream. It wasn’t glamorous or even necessarily what these products were intended for, but this combination worked beautifully for me then, and does now, especially in the winter months.

Cetaphil moisturizing Cream

My face specifically can get very dry and crepey in the winter which can accentuate the growing number of wrinkles I now bear. My favorite summertime lotions don’t seem to be heavy enough for the winter months as the air can be particularly cold and arid, and seems to draw away light moisture as quickly as it is applied. This cream just feels good to apply, as it seems to absorb into the skin and moisturize all layers of it. In the morning my face feels soft and hydrated, even in the depths of winter. I use this cream on other body parts as well, including as a nightly foot cream, and for hands and elbows.

Cetaphil Moisturizing Cream is a great all-purpose face and body cream that is very rich, and especially useful for the colder, drier weather.

Thanks for stopping by!

Stay Cozy!

My Favorite Bath Oils

I evaded oils for the skin for a long time. As a teenager, blessed with greasy skin and zero wrinkles, anything vaguely hydrophobic seemed like a really bad idea. I avoided them like the plague, in fact, until I was a decade older and starting to experience parched, crepey skin (and a few bouts of mild eczema, no less).

For a long time I have utilized body lotion for skin moisture after a shower (unless the temperatures are quite warm). Sometimes though, especially as the fall and winter seasons approach, a warm bath can be especially comforting. I tend to find that as the weather turns frigid and my baths get progressively more searing (probably not healthy, but I have a huge distaste for lukewarm soaks, mine must, MUST be hot) , my skin requires a bit more lubrication than what can be had with body lotion alone.

I discovered Neutrogena Body Oil almost a decade ago during a particularly desperate bout of dry skin. This is a fairly light oil that features sesame oil and a light fragrance (a fragrance-free version is also available). While the instructions for use say that you may use it as a body oil after a soak or a shower, I prefer to add a few drops to my bath water. When I do this, and the weather is not yet too dreadfully cold (though I do love the snow), I can skip body lotion if I happen to be in a hurry; if my skin is super parched, the combo of the bath oil and body lotion work wonders! (WORD OF CAUTION: be very careful not to slip after using ANY bath or body oil. Spoken from experience. FYI.)

neutrogena body oil

Another oil that I love year round is the Almond Shower Oil by L’Occitane. This is a much more viscous oil that the Neutrogena Body Oil. It features almond oil and a lovely, inoffensive scent (it doesn’t necessarily remind me of almonds, still very pleasant though ). While this oil is enjoyable to use in the shower and does a very good job of moisturizing the skin, it really shines when used for shaving. I have never used a more pleasant or effective shave gel or oil; my legs are so smooth after using this! This L’Occitane product is a bit expensive, bit since I primarily use it for shaving it has lasted several months and is still going strong.

l'occitane oil outside

If there’s one thing (of many) that gets me excited for fall, it’s those long, hot, evening baths after a day of working and frolicking in the cool weather. These oils, along with my favorite lotion, help my perennially dehydrated skin from getting crepey, flaky, or irritated after my scorching soaks.

both bath oils

What body oils do you like? What should I try?

Thanks so much for reading, and stay cozy!

CeraVe PM Review

To say that I have a temperamental face may be a bit of an understatement. My face can go from dry and crepey in the winter to pinguid and shiny in the summer. Then there are the many states in between. I am also nearing that stage in life where I am fighting both wrinkles and acne (when will it END?). Having said that however, I find that acne now can be a cagey beast; a moisturizer that is too rich can cause pimples, but a moisturizer that allows my skin to become parched and papery can also precede a breakout.

I started using CeraVe PM facial moisturizing lotion as my evening moisturizer several years ago after doing a lot of research regarding skin products and temperamental skin. It contains a lot of good ingredients, including ceramides and hyaluronic acid which I tend to look for. It is not really a treatment product in the sense that it is not targeted to treat either wrinkles or acne; it’s just a good basic moisturizer for times when the skin is volatile, or on nights in between treatment products.

Cerave PM

I’ll admit, at first I wasn’t overly impressed by this product, but I think after many years of using it, I have finally figured out why.

This moisturizer, while containing numerous superb ingredients, is not moisturizing enough for my skin in certain situations. In really arid climates, or in the winter months, my face can still feel dry and a bit sore in the morning after using this lotion.

Where this product really shines for me though, is in the summer. In the summertime it is too easy for almost any other moisturizer to break me out. This one, however, seems to deliver just the right dose of moisture in the heat and humidity that can abound this time of year. Because it is not fragranced I can also use it around my eyes (a boon for any prospective minimalist), and when I do, I notice no new formations of milia around my eyes (which can be a problem when I use richer lotions).

In summary, I am quite fond of this moisturizer for the summer months due to the excellent ingredients and its performance in the warmth. While it doesn’t work for me, personally, in the winter months, it may be quite remarkable for someone who already retains a lot moisture in their skin.

What’s your favorite nighttime moisturizer? Does it work for you all year round?

Stay cozy!

My Favorite All Purpose Body Lotion

In the mornings especially, I am a woman of simplicity and efficiency. I have a handful of products that I use almost every morning and that I have been faithful to for years. I tend to prefer multi use products as I cannot bear an overly cluttered counter first thing in the morning. So I very much appreciate a lotion that I can use for both my hands and my body. Enter Curél lotion.

 

curel 2

(Please pardon my dusty window sill.)

Like with most body and beauty products, I am insanely picky about body lotion. I cannot handle stickiness, greasiness, or sliminess. I also prefer to have something unscented so that it doesn’t clash with any body sprays or perfumes that I happen to be wearing. And because a cluttered bathroom counter can make my mornings seem so much more disorganized, I like a body lotion that can also double as a hand lotion.

I don’t have extremely dry skin, but it is pretty dry. I use body lotion quite often (except for when outside temperatures rise above 90 degrees). And I use hand lotion all the time! Although I prefer the unscented version, the scent of the regular version doesn’t bother me so I keep a bottle of that downstairs and another at work. I find that when my hands get dry they feel very uncomfortable, like the skin is thinner, and I lose the ability to grip sheets of paper effectively (weird, right? but true for me, anyway).

This lotion has been my favorite for almost 5 years now. It effectively moisturizes, but does not wear cloyingly on the body or hands. I honestly cannot tell you how many bottles I have purchased. It is a staple for me and I would be hard pressed to find a replacement!

What kind of lotion(s) do you use? What are your favorites?

Stay cozy!

 

My Favorite Summer Lip Balms

This is the third installment of my favorite makeup items from my 5 Minute Makeup post. I understand that lip balm is not technically makeup, but it is what I wear on a daily basis and what I feel most comfortable in at work.

I live in an area that can be quite warm in the summer and quite cold in the winter. I find that in order to maintain some level of moisture in my skin without too much greasiness, I need to change out my products from season to season. Although I prefer MUCH heavier lip balms in the winter, I find that warmer weather calls for a lighter (yet still moisturizing) lip balm.

I have two lip balms that I rotate between in summer months. One has SPF for days outside and the other is my nightly/for a day in lip balm. They are the Chapstick original with SPF 15 and the Nivea Kiss of Moisture lip balm.

I have been a sort of lip balm junkie my whole life. There is nothing I abhor more (well, maybe a few things, but you get the gist) than a lip balm that just sits on the lips and refuses to absorb and actually soften the lips. Overly waxy lip balms, or balms that disappear within minutes of application are eschewed from my list as well.

These lip balms do the job and are an essential and reliable part of my day. Not only that, they happen to be two of the most economical lip products that I have ever tried!

What are your favorite lip balms? Which ones should I try?

Stay cozy!

My Favorite SPF Ever!

Ok, I apologize for gushing about something so TOPICAL, but this stuff is really great.

kissmyface

Ever since I severely sunburned the skin on my face in my teens (blisters, scabs, general horror) I have worn sunscreen. Daily. Period.

Now, as I’ve entered and nearly left my third decade, I have found that my skin has become increasingly sensitive to various known and mystery chemicals. Years ago, I started searching in earnest for a sunscreen that my skin could tolerate without rashes, bumps, or any kind of dermatological trauma. In my hunt I found many natural brands (and a few drugstore brands) that rely on mineral sunscreens in combination with some chemical sunscreens. Certain chemical sunscreens seem to irritate my skin, cause increased oil production on my face, and break me out. No fun.

This one by Kiss My Face is my favorite, and I have used it for nearly a decade now. There is no sunscreen smell, no odor at all really, and it feels super comfortable on my skin. It is a happy amalgamate of non-greasy and yet moisturizing. It does not claim to be a primer, though it does work as one with many (though not all) foundations. It does not erase pores by any means, but the gigantic holes in my face (I exaggerate) do appear slightly softer when I wear this sunscreen.

My skin has a bit of an attitude and can be bone-dry in winter and frying pan-greasy in the summer; this is the single sunscreen that works for me in all seasons (though I concede it would probably be far too greasy for those with permanently oily skin types). It doesn’t appear to clog pores or cause acne, which I attribute to the generally skin-friendly ingredient list.

I am not a dermatologist or aesthetician, and I certainly can’t say whom this would absolutely work for, but this is one I really like (after experimenting with MANY). If you are looking to try a new SPF I very much recommend this one!