Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Skin Care and Beauty Blog Made it to the Top!

Just discovered that Skin Care and Beauty Blog made it to the Top 100 Beauty Blogs carefully selected by editors.

Yay! Thanks for selecting my blog for this awesome list of best beauty blogs! I am really flattered :-)

I recommend all beauty fans check out this list for blogs in your area of interest: guys at spent a lot of time browsing through, reading and reviewing beauty blogs for their top 100 list. Wow, great job!
Oh, and if you have a favorite beauty blog that is not on the list, you are welcome to send it in for consideration!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Looking For Holiday Makeup Inspiration

This year I didn’t have time to blog about all the holiday make up collections out there. And they are as always lovely!
Today I was looking through this year’s collections searching for some inspiration for my holiday makeup. Here are some looks that attracted my attention…

I really like Dior’s look in light purple! I have to confess, I just love all the shades of purple. I have quite a collection of them from various brands. However in terms of Christmas and New Years I still gravitate to red and gold as the colors of choice for the holiday evening look. Funny but even my Christmas tree is decorated in red and gold! So I guess that’s why my favorites would be Estee Lauder’s Ultimate Red and Clarins’ Palazzo D’Oro.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Beauty Shopping: What Beauty Products Are on Your Christmas Wish List?

This Christmas as always my hubby inquired sweetly what I would like to see among the presents under the Christmas tree. I didn’t tell him I have been dreaming about trying an SK II product and am very curious in giving a try to Galvanic SPA from Nu Skin. I think I’ll reserve these for anniversaries or something like that. But there are 2 products currently on my wish list: Guerlain eye cream – Success Eye Tech Up-Lifting Wrinkle Reducer (Eye Cellular Amber) and Dior Svelte Reversal Body Contouring and Firming Concentrate. Actually, I just realized that Guerlain’s eye cream is extremely expensive. As I can see in online stores it is around 100$ so maybe it was a bit too much to ask for :-)

If you read my blog you know that I am constantly in search for an effective eye cream to keep eye puffiness and wrinkles at bay. I need to upgrade from my favorite Guerlain Happylogy to something a bit stronger. So I am constantly asking for samples of eye creams whnever I buy a skin care product. I’ve tested a lot of eye creams some of which were really great and showed great result, like Bio Performance by Shiseido, for example. But I am sensitive to most of them and get irritated red eyes as a reaction. Guerlain’s Success Eye Tech seemed to work ok for me so I want to try and make a switch.

As for Dior’s Svelte Concentrate, I’ve been curious about it since summer. I tested Clinique’s High Definition Body Lift which was ok. I know winter is not the high season for contouring your body but I personally try to stay fit and keep skin smooth all year round! So now I would really love to try Dior’s product.

So are there any beauty products on your list?

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Makeup Tip: Give Your Eyes an Immediate Lift – 3 Quick and Easy Tricks

How to get more open bright younger looking eyes with the help of makeup? If you don’t know yet these tricks, you will be surprised how easy it is!

Arch! Create an arch by shaping and combing up your brows. Brow’s importance in defining the eye area is often underestimated. I tend to ignore my brows so often – big mistake! By shaping and creating a nice arch, you will visually lift up the whole eye area and get a younger look. Determine a brow shape that works for you using the three point technique (see a very short video below). Pluck your eye brows, brush them up and fix with eye brow gel. You can also use some hair spray on an eye brow brush to brush brows up.

Highlight! Create a highlight. Apply some light shadow or highlighter right under the brow starting from the arch and toward the outer edge. Blend well. This will give immediate lifting effect.

Curl! Curl your lashes – twice! First try to get as close to the lash line as possible then curl again in the middle. As a result your eyes will look more open and bigger.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Beauty Find: Clothes Help to Fight Acne

Can you imagine: clothes that's not only stylish but has SPF and also fights acne! Unbelievable but true! A smart company SunSoul created a line of clothes “blumod” that, as they claim, will help blemished skin. How? With the help of “professional light treatment technology”! SunSoul specializes in clothing made from what they call Fluorescent Therapeutic Materials. The latter provides protection from the damaging UV rays and uses sun light to benefit your skin.

So the type of material used in the blumod line turns broad-spectrum light into a narrow wavelength of blue light which kills bacteria and this way helps to fight acne. Obviously it treats acne only on the parts of the body it covers. Blumod line offers men's and women's shirts, unisex shirts, hats and accessories.

I find this a very interesting idea. As a teenager I suffered from acne on my back which was so frustrating and embarrassing for me then. So I can really associate and understand a need for such clothes… I wonder if it really works… What do you think?

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Beauty Ingredient: Syn-ake

Photo by Pedro Marinello Kairath at

What only cosmetic industry doesn’t resort to to provide us with the most modern effective anti-aging solutions. They even turn to snakes in search of inspiration! Syn-ake is a chemical modeled on the paralyzing snake venom of a southeast Asian temple viper. Syn-ake as you probably already guessed is actually meant to sound similar to “snake”. The chemical is used in skin care to achieve Botox-like muscle relaxing effect and is manufactured by a Swiss company Pentapharm. Syn-ake penetrates skin and blocks the nerve receptors bringing down the muscle movement.
Why resort to Botox if the same effect could be achieved with a topical product? Of course there are those who say that applying a muscle paralyzing product all over your face is extreme. And that does sound weird, doesn’t it? But I say, I would give it a try and see if it works. Here are a couple products containing Syn-ake that I found:
Peter Thomas Roth Un-Wrinkle Line
Z. Bigatti Rescue

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Beauty Review: Clarins Stretch Mark Control

Helps Reduce the Appearance of Stretch Marks, Promotes Skin Elasticity and Comfort

Product Profile in Short:
Three targeted actions help prevent and reduce the appearance of stretch marks while comforting skin during pregnancy or periods of weight fluctuation.

Close-up on Active Ingredients:

Aqua, Cyclomethicone, Catearyl Alcohol, Carpylic/ Capric Triglyceride, Isononyl Isononenoate, alcohol, hydrogenated coco-glycerides, Glycerin, Cetaryl Glucoside, Squalane, Potassium Cetyl Phosphate, Asiaticoside, Pluacrylamide, Dimethicone, Carbomer, Octyldodeceth-25, c13-14 Isoparafin, Disodium Edta, Ethylhexylglycerin, Sodium Hydrozide, Sodium Cetearyl sulfate.

Becoming a mom is the most exciting event of your life. I was really looking forward to this fulfilling experience. However motherhood comes with certain “side-effects”. Namely – stretch marks… Determined to do my best to minimize the imprint of pregnancy on my body and skin, I chose Clarins Stretch Mark Control to help prevent stretch marks. Read more about my experience below.

Texture: creamy, but not overly oily nor heavy
Smell: no fragrance

I liked the texture of this product. It is not too heavy but very moisturizing and nourishing. I used it mostly on my tummy and breasts. After massaging the cream in I could get dressed in about 3-5 minutes. It gets absorbed fairly quickly and leaves skin very soft and smooth. However you have to watch the amount you put on. I noticed that if you use too much it would turn into crumbs and would feel unpleasant, kind of itchy on the skin.

I didn’t have much problems with irritated itchy skin so cannot comment on weather Clarins Stretch Mark Control relieves itchiness from the stretching. But what I can say is that I had NO stretch marks after I gave birth! So either it is good genes, good luck or Clarins Stretch Mark Control works. Note, I was very diligent with applying this cream. I started early on at 2.5-3 months and from 4th month would apply it twice daily. And let me tell you, Clarins Stretch Mark Control was quite an investment. I would go through one tube in 1.5 months…

Price Tag:

Bottom Line:
This is a very good product. However, no one will guarantee that it will work for you... but it worked for me so it’s worth trying!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Quick Fix: Sooth Red Irritated Skin

Be it a hot summer day or freezing winter weather, smokey bar or a peeling session gone wrong, but as a result you have a situation with red stressed skin. What can you do and what will work quick?! To sooth red irritated skin soak a cloth or a towel in cold milk and apply to your face. Repeat several times. Milk Protein has soothing effect on the skin. Cold constricts blood vessels and relieves redness and puffiness. Other soothing ingredients you can use instead of milk are Chamomile, Aloe Vera and Witch Hazel.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Beauty Review: Dove Nutrium Moisture Body Wash

Cares for surface skin ten layers deep

Restores skin’s natural moisture while cleansing with body wash

Product Profile in Short:
• Repairs and maintains skin’s protective layer during cleansing
• Unlike moisturizers in other body washes, Dove Body Wash with NutriumMoisture™ penetrates surface skin deep down to replenish and nourish
• Clinically proven to significantly reduce dryness and improve moisturization

Texture: creamy, similar to a body lotion
Smell: light warm feminine scent

Dove Nutrium Moisture line of body washes is available in Deep Moisture, Sensitive Skin and Gentle Exfoliating. Recently I have been using the Deep Moisture and my Mom, who seems to be allergic to everything and can use only unscented baby soap, has started a Dove Sensitive Skin Body Wash. I have to say when it comes to indulging into a body care product, Dove is at the top of my list. Ever since I was a teenager I loved those moisturizing soaps by Dove and now I regularly use moisturizing and anti-aging skin care products like Dove Pro Age Neck Cream and Dove Silk Glow. That’s why Dove Nutrium Deep Moisture completely lived up to my expectations. It has creamy beautiful texture that makes it a pleasure to apply in a shower and nice light but not overwhelming scent. But don’t expect much of the lather it feels more like a creamy body lotion on the skin. Such texture and the smell just make you want to keep rubbing it on another extra minute… After washing it off my skin feels very soft and it has this nice warm feminine scent. Dove Body Wash does its job gently without causing dry skin. It actually contains some natural moisturizing ingredients such as soybean oil and sunflower seed oil so it not only cleanses your skin but helps to keep it moisturized.
Oh and my Mom is very happy about her Dove Sensitive Skin Body Wash – she gets no allergies, only clean and soft skin!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Beauty Review: La Mer SPF 30 UV Protecting Fluid

Product Tag Line:
A treatment that is light years ahead of its time.

this high-powered treatment utilizes a unique sunscreen blend to provide broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection while keeping skin soft, comfortable and hydrated

Product Profile in Short:
At I read:
- Tourmaline and malachite gemstones absorb light energy, transforming it into beneficial green light to enhance anti-oxidant activity.
- Exclusive photonic spheres capture light while diverting potentially damaging light from the skin.
- The SPF 30 UV Protecting Fluid utilizes smart seaweeds to keep skin comfortable, hydrated and soothed. These natural humectants attract moisture to the skin and create a protective, emollient barrier, helping to prevent dehydration.
- Luxurious and lightweight to the touch, this transparent fluid formula is an ideal makeup primer.

Close-up on Active Ingredients:
Cyclopentasiloxane - silicone
C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate - Emollient
Phenyl Trimethicone - silicone
Methyl Trimethicone - Skin-Conditioning Agent
Octyldodecyl Neopentanoate - Emollient
Vinyl Dimethicone/Methicone Sislesquioxane Crosspolymer - VISCOSITY CONTROLLING
Butylene Glycol – Humectant, Emollient
Methyl Methacrylate Crosspolymer - Film Former; Viscosity Increasing Agent
Glycerin - humectant
Dimethicone - Skin-Conditioning Agent - Occlusive
Chodnrus Crispus – Carrageenan Extract – Skin Conditioning Agent, Extract from Red Seaweed
Laminaria Ochroleuca Extract - Skin Conditioning Agent
Crithmum Maritimum Extract – Sea Fennel Extract, tonic, skin conditioning
Yeast Extract
Cetyl PEG/PPG-10/1 Dimethicone
Sporbic Acid
Green 5

I didn’t have enough patience to put down all of those long chemical names but I listed most of them. As you see the promised gems are in there! So that’s what we paid the high price for! There are several silicones and skin conditioning emollients at the beginning of the list and I see 2 humectants. All these ingredients should help to keep skin moisturized. Pay attention to several seaweeds extracts - look good!

Texture: very thin and liquidy
Smell: light sweet fragrance

La Mer SPF 30 UV Protecting Fluid sounds mysterious and high-tech with gemstones that turn light energy into beneficial green light to enhance anti-oxidant activity. Usually such descriptions make me suspicious. But let’s remember the famous Crème de La Mer. The legend of how this product came to be is quite unbelievable plus nobody knows how it actually works, even its creator. However I really liked the results. So I decided to give La Mer Protecting Fluid a try.

In spite of my great respect for La Mer, I was not particularly happy with this product. First of all, even though it is the thinnest and “liquidest” sun protection I’ve ever used, it feels very oily on the skin. So even though La Mer says it is “light” I would disagree and call it heavy. I did not like the feeling of oil on my skin and would not recommend it for oily skin types. In addition, I could not find anywhere on the box or product description a mention that it is non comedogenic. Since I did get break outs several times when I was using La Mer SPF 30 Protecting Fluid and taking into consideration that it is oily and does have a couple silicones and occlusives on the list, I attribute the nasty spots to the use of La Mer SPF 30 Protecting Fluid.

Bottom Line:
I will not buy La Mer SPF 30 Protecting Fluid again. It has too many drawbacks for the high price tag. I guess the gems didn’t work for me! Better stick to wearing them in my earrings!

Price Time:

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Perricone Giveaway Winner!

Sorry it took me so long to announce a winner for the recent Giveaway for Perricone MD Eye Serum with Vitamin C Ester . The lucky winner is Wanda from California! Congratulations! The prize is already on its way! Enjoy this wonderful anti-aging product from Perricone MD!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Beauty Review: Celibre Antioxidant Serum

I’ve turned 30 this month. Applying makeup on the day of my actual birthday I noticed a line in the corner of my mouth. Well, I thought to myself, it’s kind of nice to get a first line from laughing and smiling and not from frowning... On the other hand, it’s time to step up the efforts of preventing and fighting the signs of aging. Now I have graduated into the anti-age group and can test and try anti-wrinkle treatments. This month I am testing Celibre Antioxidant Serum with TGF-B-1 Growth Factor.

A unique serum that delivers skin enhancing benefits of 10% pure, stabilized L-Ascorbic Acid in combination with liposome encapsulated TFG-beta-1 growth factor.

Product Profile in Short:
- Stimulates collagen growth with Vitamin C and growth factor TGF-beta-1
- Improves skin texture and tone resulting in younger, healthier looking skin

Close-up on Active Ingredients:
Cyclomethicone, L-Ascorbic Acid, Silicone Polymer, Dimethicone, Purifed Water, Dimethicone Copolyol, Phopholipids, TGF-beta-1, Cimicifuga racemosa Extract.

Two central ingredients of Celibre Antioxidant Serum are Vitamin C and Human Growth Factor TGF Beta One. Products with Vitamin C are very beneficial for our skin. Vitamin C stimulates collagen production, provides anti-oxidant protection to skin cells and also increases cells turnover helping to achieve smoother, brighter and healthier looking skin. Human Growth Factor (HGF), according to, is “a complex family of hormones that are produced by the body to control cell growth and cell division in skin, blood, bone, and nerve tissue”. Some research proves that HGF can be very effective in treating wrinkles. However notes that there has not yet been enough research into “long-term risks or stability”.

Texture: thick and creamy
Scent: not scented
My first impression of the serum was that it is very thick and rich. However when I pumped some on my fingertip and applied it on the skin I was surprised to see that it is not at all heavy. It almost immediately melts into the skin and I don’t really feel it at all. There is a warning on the package saying that people with sensitive skin may experience some “transient tingling sensation”. I did feel light stinging at the beginning and one time when I had a small cut on my cheek. But I experienced no irritation. I have to mention that this product has some bonus features of a primer. Upon application, right away my skin looks smooth, silky and matte. So this is a big plus! Already in a week I could see some positive changes in my skin’s tone and texture. It started to look smoother and had more glow to it.

Price Tag:

Bottom Line:
Good anti-aging product that shows result in a matter of weeks!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Beauty Review: Skin MD Shielding Lotion

It’s definitely getting coooold outside. Brrrr… Is your skin also feeling the change of seasons? Of course it does! The cold air outdoors and drying air from heating indoors throw it completely out of balance and weaken its protective barrier. As a result you can have dryer and more sensitive skin in autumn and winter. That is what happens to me, unless I change my moisturizer from a light summer variant to a heavier (but non-comedogenic) winter one. Recently I have been testing Skin MD’s Shielding Lotion. Here is my review.

Product Tag Line:
Your Skin Has Rarely Felt or Looked So Good

Exceptionally enhances your skin’s hydrating and protective abilities

Product Profile in Short:
- Far more effective than conventional moisturizers
- Promptly absorbs, transforming the outer layer of skin into a hydrating invisible shield
- Finest natural ingredients
- Regeneration is fully realized within a few days

Close-up on Active Ingredients:
Deionized water (Aqua)
Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract (Aloe Vera) – has soothing and regenerating effect
Cyclopentasiloxane - silicone fluid
Dimethicone – silicone, occlusive
Methyl Gluceth-20 – emollient, humectant
Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E) - powerful antioxidant, produces anti-aging, regenerating effect
Arnica Montana Flower Extract (Arnica) - reduces inflammation
Symphytum Officinale Leaf Extract (Comfrey) – has soothing, healing, anti-bacterial properties
Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Extract (Chamomile) - healing, tonic, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties
Achillea Millefolium Extract (Yarrow) - anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties
Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer - thickener
1,2 Hexanediol - humectant
Caprylyl Glycol - humectant
Butylene Glycol- humectant
Aminomethyl Propanol – thickener and PH-adjuster
Phenoxyethanol - preservative

As you see, there are many humectants. These ingredients are responsible for attracting water to the skin. I can see one occlusive ingredient (Dimethicone) that helps to lock the moisture in but still allows the Sheilding Lotion to have wonderfully light texture. There are also many soothing and healing ingredients that help skin to regenerate and function at its best. You can actually find a very detailed information about each ingredient at the Skin MD website

Texture: light lotion
Smell: very subtle natural scent

Skin MD Shielding Lotion won a point with me before I even tried it and as soon as I read the ingredient list. I love products that are not artificially perfumed. So often I get allergic to perfumed products that I am getting frustrated with the whole idea of scenting a skin care product. I can put on a perfume when I want to! Back to the Shielding Lotion... It won another point when I tested its texture… The texture of The Shielding Lotion is very light, not heavy or oily. It is super light and absorbs fast. Leaves no residue on the skin. Light texture for a product that helps to rebuild skin’s barrier is a big advantage, trust me! Such products usually tend to have very occlusive heavy feel to them.
Skin MD Shielding Lotion says it is for face, hands and body. This made me a bit skeptical because I am a great believer in a separate jar for each body part! :-) I would never put anything on my face that is supposed to be used for hands as I think that skin on face and hands is quite different so its needs would be different as well. However I did “take the risk” and used Shielding Lotion as a facial moisturizer. How surprised I was when not only I didn’t break out but my skin became smoother, brighter and healthier looking. I applied Shielding Lotion morning and evening and I didn’t have to reapply it during the day. My skin felt well moisturized and very comfortable.

Price Tag:
Bottom Line:
Good product for a good price!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Top 10 Beauty Foods For Autumn

Autumn is the time for a great variety of fruit and vegetables that will provide your body with the necessary vitamins and nutrients to improve your skin from the inside for its health and beauty. Below is a list of delicious fruit and vegetables that come highly recommended!
Pears contain minerals such as zinc, plus Vitamins C and E, and some B Vitamins.
Leeks contain a selection of nutrients, including folates, B Vitamins, calcium, iron, potassium and magnesium.
Pumpkins are a very rich source of beta carotene, which in our bodies is converted into Vitamin A which is essential for our skin. Pumpkins also contain calcium, iron, and Vitamin C.
Sweetcorn is also in season in autumn. It contains magnesium, potassium and phosphorus.
Broccoli is a very important vegetable for beauty diet as it contains a lot of essential vitamins for skin’s beauty and youth. It has Vitamin C and bioflavonoids that together protect biomolecules in the dermis such as collagen, elastin and hyaluronic acid. Both Vitamin C and flavonoids are powerful antioxidants and protect your skin from free radical damage. Broccoli also contains alpha lipoic acid.
Grapes Although in most countries they are now available all year round, autumn is the high season for grapes. Grapes are rich in magnesium, Iron and Selenium as well as biflavonoids.
Cabbage is an excellent source of Vitamin C, fiber and also contain Coenzyme Q10, a unique fat-soluble vitamin-like substance that is a potent antioxidant and a proven anti-aging fighter.
Carrots are rich in Vitamin A. In fact one carrot will supply all your Vitamin A needs for the whole day. Be careful not to overdo carrots as your skin may turn orange.
Blackberries are rich in vitamin C. Also, they are an excellent source of Vitamin E which is beneficial for the heart and circulatory problems as well as for the skin. In addition these berries contain the fiber pectin which helps to eliminate cholesterol, and protects against environmental toxins.
Raspberries contain Vitamin C as well as flavonoids, ellagic acid which neutralize free radicals and prevent damage to cell membranes and other structures in the body.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Beauty Shopping: Clarins Advanced Extra-Firming Neck Cream

Want to share my joy about a new beauty investment! You know what they say, décolleté area is often ignored by women in their skin care routine and that's why it is often the first to show age. I did take care of my neck and chest but nevertheless there are some lines. So frustrating! That's why I need to make an extra effort and am always on the look out for an effective anti-aging product for my neck and décolleté. This time I got Clarins Advanced Extra-Firming Neck Cream. Oh my, at 80$ a 50ml jar it seemed expensive to me! So it'd better be good. Don't miss my review!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Top 5 Beauty Vitamins and Minerals

I will repeat what I have said so many times before: beauty comes not only from the bottoms of expensive cream jars but from the bottoms of our dinner plates as well, i.e. from a healthy balanced diet rich in vitamins and minerals. So here is Top 5 Beauty Vitamins and Minerals you may want to look out for to include into your diet to have healthy and young looking skin as long as possible. Some of these vitamins are also great when used topically.
Vitamin C: a very powerful anti-oxidant. Not only does it protect skin cells from free radicals it also helps collagen formation.
Vitamin E: another antioxidant that guards cells from free radical damage and helps to soothe and heal stressed skin. Vitamin E has shown to reduce sunburn and help to heel wounds. Due to the fact that Vitamin E is fat soluble, it gets easily absorbed and stored by the skin.
Zinc: Zinc is necessary for DNA repair, collagen and elastin production in the skin. That is why it is critically important for healthy skin function. It helps heal blemishes, reduces inflammation and helps to fight acne.
Alpha lipoic acid: a very special antioxidant as it is water and fat soluble. This means that it is able to get to every cell in your body! This acid also helps to regenerate other oxidants like Vitamin E, Vitamin C, Gluthathione and Coenzyme Q10.
Bioflavonoids: natural anti-oxidant free-radical scavengers. Bioflavonoids work in synergy with other antioxidants like Vitamin E, ascorbate (Vitamin C), carotene (Vitamin A) and Selenium to reduce damage to the cells caused by oxidation. Flavonoids have also been found to help in maintaining the thin walls of the capillaries, promote circulation and have an antibacterial effect.

There are much more than just 5 beauty vitamins! So I have to mention such vitamins and minerals as Vitamin A, Vitamin B, Omega-3 fatty acid and Magnesium - all of them contribute the healthy functioning of the skin cells and should be present in your beauty diets!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Beauty Talk: What You Can Do For Your Skin in Autumn

With October upon us sunny days are becoming a thing of the past and colder gloomier weeks are waiting ahead. But don’t be sad. No more sun means good for your skin! And autumn is a good time to pay some special attention to it. First of all your skin needs some help to recover from the sunny summer months. Not only did it get a dose of aging UV rays, hot sunny weather may also have caused some dehydration, broken capillaries, loss of firmness… these are actually all symptoms of sun-damage. What can you do to help your skin out?
Do it at home with a special kit available from many brands (for example, Lancome), or use professional help. Many cosmetologists recommend to wait until October to take a series of professional peeling procedures. In October the sun becomes mild enough not to cause any damage to the freshly revealed skin layer.

2.Intensify your moisturizing efforts!
During the hot, sunny summer months your skin looses a lot of moisture. Dehydration is one of the reasons why it looks so dull and you can see new lines.
3.Add an intensive product into your skin care routine
Cosmetologists recommend, starting from your late 20s-early 30s, to include into your daily routine an intensive skin treatment once or twice a year for 1-3 months. The length and intervals between the treatments depend on your age and skin condition.
4. Give your skin an At-Home Intensive Beauty Treatment
Do a series of mini at-home facials.2-3 times a week apply a mask: once or twice choose a moisturizing mask, once – an antioxidant, anti-aging or energizing one. Here is a quick tip: Before applying a mask cleanse your face or use an exfoliator to prepare your skin for the treatment. To increase the potency of the mask you can treat your face to a steam bath. Put some hot water in a bowl, cleanse your face and sit over the bowl. Cover yourself with a towel to keep the steam in. You can also add a green tea bag into the water for additional antioxidant effect or a chamomile tea bag for soothing effect. A steam bath will open up the pores and help to cleanse them of the accumulated sebum and dirt. It will also moisturize, soften the skin and stimulate blood circulation (that is why if you are prone to broken vessels in the face you should skip this step). After the steam bath follow all the other steps of the facial: exfoliate and apply a mask.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Beauty Giveaway: Vitamin C-Ester Eye Serum by Perricone MD

The last giveaway for Perricone’s Advanced Face Firming Activator was so popular that we decided to do another giveaway for another genius product by Perricone MD- the Vitamin C Ester Eye Serum

For those who are hearing about Perricone for the first time, I will shortly introduce the company. Perricone MD is a US company created by a well-known clinical and research dermatologist Dr. Nicholas Perricone. Recognized as the Father of the Inflammation Theory of Aging, Perricone developed an award-winning line of skin care products and supplements based on his long experience and research in dermatology. Perricone MD skin care line covers all skin’s needs and offers diverse anti-aging solutions.

For the next 2 weeks you have a chance to win one of Dr.Perricone’s products – Vitamin C Ester Eye Serum!

Vitamin C Ester Eye Serum is a light-weight non-oily serum. It firms and brightens the area around the eyes. It also fights lines and wrinkles with its key ingredient Vitamin C Ester. As you know Vitamin C is not only a powerful and effective antioxidant, it is also used by our skin to build collagen and to treat sun damaged skin. Vitamin C Ester is vitamin C with fatty acid attached to it. That allows it to be better absorbed by the skin than vitamin C alone, which is why it is much more effective!

Note: This giveaway is for US citizens only.

The contest starts today, 29 September, and is over 13 October.

The lucky winner will be selected randomly!

What do you have to do to win the Vitamin C Ester Eye Serum
* Leave a comment and tell us why you need/want this product or share your experience about another similar serum.

* Don't forget to provide your email for contact!

* Get an additional entry by following or subscribing to Skin Care and Beauty Blog or to my twitter account(post your twitter account in the comment)

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Beauty Review: Damascena Pure Rose Water

It is the first time that I am using rose water and I like it!

Product Tag Line:
Make this your own love potion.

Purifies, hydrates, and invigorates skin.

Product Profile in Short:
* Tones skin after cleansing
* Reduces puffiness around eyes
* Hydrates skin, leaving a healthy glow
*Softens the complexion and clears the skin
* Gentle in treating many types of dermatitis, with antibacterial properties which help combat acne
* Balances and restores the skin's Ph, helping to tighten pores.

Close-up on Active Ingredients:

Look at this beautiful list of ingredients.
100% pure Rosa damascena (rose) water, Rosa bourbonia (rose) oil, Lonicera japonica (Japanese honeysuckle) extract.

Texture: transparent liquid
Smell: very subtle rose scent

Rose Water has been used by women for centuries as a tonic, anti-septic and an anti-aging treatment. Benefits of Rose Water for the skin are numerous. It‘s toning and hydrating; it reduces puffiness, balances skin’s Ph and sebum production. In fact, I really appreciated toning abilities of Damascena Pure Rose Water. I apply it with a cotton ball after washing my face and before using a moisturizer. It makes my skin look fresher, healthier and brighter. The results are visible almost immediately. I also noticed how well it minimizes pores and balances my medium oily T-Zone. Note that you can use rose water as a mask. I tested placing 2 cotton balls soaked in chilled rose water over my eyes to see if this treatment will do anything to eye puffiness. As a result, my eyes did look less puffy and refreshed. You can also use Rose water to moisten a mask, for example a clay mask.

Bottom Line:
Usually I avoid using toning products because they irritate my skin or make it feel tight. But this time it was a completely positive experience for me!

Price Tag:
25-40$ at

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Beauty Talk: Stretch Marks - Personal Experience

As you may know from my previous posts, I have recently become a mom. Having just gone through 9 months of pregnancy I have very close and personal thoughts about stretch marks.

Let me start by saying that starting off pregnancy at the weight of 48 kg, I was sure, I was in for a belly full of stretch marks. I was terrified at the thought of getting those terrible scar-like stretch marks and sagging skin after delivery. So I decided to do my best to prevent and treat them. After some research I decided to choose Clarins Stretch Mark Control as my preventative product.

Either I was lucky or Stretch Mark Control does work! I am happy to announce that I have no stretch marks!

So let me tell you what exactly I did.

I applied Stretch Mark Control starting from the 2nd -3rd month. I started with once a day application. At the 4th month I applied it 2 times a day plus another (less expensive) product once a day. One tube of Clarins lasted me only 1.5 months and I was using it mostly on my tummy. So get ready to shed some money on stretch marks prevention.

I also made sure to do my exercises till the last days of prego. Remember, exercising is very important for skin’s elasticity. I was wearing supporting girdle all the time starting around month 4. This helped to avoid additional stress on the skin. And of course I did my best to eat healthy so that not to gain too much weight. No, it was not a perfect diet and yes, I did enjoy sweets and other fattening stuff… But I did my best to pace myself. Despite this I did gain 15kg instead of recommended 12 kg.

In one of my next posts I will review in more detail Clarins Stretch Mark Control.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Beauty Review: Testing Duchess Marden

Today’s post is dedicated to the Rose – the most romantic flower in the world that has also been used by women for centuries as a beauty treatment. Inspired by the benefits that rose petals can offer to the skin, Marla Steur created a skin care line- Duchess Marden. It is based on completely natural ingredients with the rose as a key ingredient in every product. The line offers products for various skin types and boasts of natural scents with no artificial fragrance and no allergy provoking ingredients. Duchess Marden promises that its highly concentrated formulations will provide visible results.

I had an opportunity to test a couple products and in this post would like to make a short overview and share my impressions. I tested sample products of the Neck and Decollette Serum, Cream Cleanser, Anti-Wrinkle Serum, and Hydrating Masque. In a separate post I will review Damascena Rose Water. I was very much impressed with the ingredient lists of the products. I like to see botanical extracts and natural ingredients at the very top of the list. So let me start...

I liked the nice texture and feel of Damascena Neck and Decollette Serum. It contains sea algae extract, apricot kernel oil, aloe, rose extract and other wonderful ingredients. You need just a bit for the whole area and it absorbs very quickly leaving skin soft and smooth. I was very happy to notice a change in my skin’s texture in a couple of weeks. I liked this product a lot! Note, it has a quite intense scent of a rose with some bitter woody notes. In case you prefer subtle scents for your skin care products, you may not like the intensity of this one.

Damascena Cream Cleanser has a herbal woody smell, feels creamy on the face and leaves skin feeling clean. In my opinion, a cleanser is crucial to skin’s balance. It should effectively cleanse without irritating. I tested this cream cleanser for a week and got no break outs or irritations.

Damascena Anti-Wrinkle Serum feels to me like a light face oil. Even though the product description reads that it does not leave oily residue, it did feel oily on my skin. Unfortunately I developed sensitivity to this product so I could not appreciate its benefits to the full.

Damascena Face Cream: This moisturizer has a light rose scent, contains mushroom extracts, organic shea butter and apricot oil. It feels rich but absorbs wonderfully. My skin really loved it! It felt hydrated and looked glowing.

Hydrating Mask is of clear gel texture with no obvious scent. Feels nice on the skin, leaves it feeling hydrated, comfortable and looking refreshed.

So my overall impression is truly positive. Duchess Marden is a great line of products for those who like their skin care to be based on botanical extracts, natural and pure. And it is quite affordably priced with products costing between $25 and $60.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Beauty Review: Eau Flirt - Smell Sexy!

I am very excited! Recently Harvey Prince, creators of the one and only anti-aging perfume Ageless Fantasy, has launched another unique scent "Eau Flirt". This time male sexual arousal is at the center of their attention. Their idea was to create a perfume that makes you smell flirty, hot and desirable. As was the case with their anti-aging perfume, this idea is also backed by research. Alan Hirsch and Jason Gruss (Taste and Smell Treatment and Research Foundation) looked into the impact scents produce on male sexual arousal.

So, actually, the release of this new perfume from Harvey Prince makes two of us “excited” me AND my husband ;-)

Are you curious what smells “sexy” to men? Researchers came up with a surprising twosome: lavender and pumpkin pie!! These scents appear to be the two things that turn men on! Who would have thought… But don’t rush and smear a pumpkin pie all over yourself to seduce the object of your desires. Using a complex and elegant fragrance with the notes mentioned is a better strategy. I am happy to be one of the first to try and share my impressions of Eau Flirt with you!
Eau Flirt blend is composed of berry and fruity top notes: black currant, plum, raspberry, apple, black licorice and lavender, floral and spicy middle notes of jasmine, ylang, nutmeg and cinnamon (the classic aromas of pumpkin pie), and a drydown of musk and rare and precious woods

My first impression was that this is not a light fragrance. However it has just the right intensity and spice to excite but not to overwhelm. To draw attention but not to overpower… I prefer to wear Eau Flirt as an evening scent. Fresh and juicy notes of berries and sweet florals flirt with more heavy, “serious” and spicy notes of cinnamon, precious woods and musk. To me raspberry, jasmine and cinnamon notes stood out from the bouquet. Something in the fragrance distantly reminded me of a lollipop I used to love in my childhood. But that is just a personal association… though I wouldn’t at all mind if my darling thinks I am a lollipop :-) ya know what I mean ;-)

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Beauty Talk: What Can Botox Do For You

Since Botox first hit the stage in 1989, it has gone through numerous reinventions. Started as an ophthalmologic treatment it was discovered to be effective against facial wrinkles and in 2002 was welcomed by FDA to the US market. Since then it has become US most popular cosmetic treatment. And it's wildly popular not only in the US but around the world. Botox applications grow with each and every year and currently there are more than 90 uses for this drug only 5 of which are approved in the USA and 16 in other countries. So here are some examples of what Botox treatment can do for you nowadays.

Get wider eye
By injecting a minuscule amount of Botox in the center of the lower lash line docs can create effect of a widening of the eye and give it a more almond shape.

Create a nicer nose
To lift up a tip of the nose without a plastic surgery, doctors inject Botox into the bottom of the septum. If you already have and upturned nose and want it to slope downward it is possible to achieve by injecting Botox into the nostrils. The difference measures in raising or lowering the nose tip by 3 millimiters.

Better (not Wider) smile
Botox makes it possible to fix the horse-teeth smile- the type of smile when your upper lip pulls up too high. A total of 5 strategically calculated injections around the upper lip will solve the problem. This procedure requires lots of experience. Inject in the wrong place and you will get flat lip or asymmetrical mouth.

Treat acne and smooth out skin
Botox can be used to reduce acne by shrinking pores. It is injected superficially without affecting the muscle to paralyze the oil-producing sebaceous glands. Treatment can provide up to 50-75% reduction in pore size.

Give you perky breasts
Botox can give you results comparable to surgical quality in lifting up your bust. To achieve the result, the drug is injected below the sternum to underneath of each breast. However, be warned, results are extremely unpredictable. Some procedures show none at all.

Delete cleavage crinkle
To treat the deep V on the chest caused by the weight of the breasts and sun damage, doctors use a combination of laser and botox treatment. This is a complicated procedure, so stick to an experts with breast experience.

Alleviate migraine headaches
Injecting Botox into the back or sides of the head, forehead or brow area proved effective to relieve migranes.

Plump Up Lips
A pouty lip can me achieved with just one injection of botox under the bottom lip.

Wipe away sadness
You know how with age corners of the mouth tend to turn down. Botox can help with that. Injected into the corners of the mouth it help to slightly turn them up.

This is not the end of the list. Other effects achievable with Botox include relaxing bands in neck, treating muscle spasms and eye twitching, smoothing dimpled chin etc. Just remember, if you decide to use Botox for any of the reasons mentioned above, make sure to find an experienced certified specialist!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Beauty Buzz: Harvey Prince Releases a New Perfume Eau Flirt

Harvey Prince & Co., creators of the anti-aging perfume Ageless Fantasy, came up with just another scent-sation. This time they are really playing with fire. The new perfume Eau Flirt was designed to heat up passion and romance. Using data from a reasearch on the impact of scents on male sexual arousal Harvey Prince created a formula for a perfect flirt: sweet and fruity top notes, floral and spicy middle notes, woods and musk bottom notes, combined with vanilla and pumpkin essences. Eau Flirt is released today and can be already purchased online at

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Beauty Talk: What Retinoids Can Do For Your Skin

Retinoids, a form of Vitamin A, are used in more and more skin care products to address various skin issues. How do they work? Retinoids interact with retinoic acid receptors in skin cells. This way they can affect such processes as cell growth and turnover, synthesis of proteins including collagen and elastin etc.

So what can retinoid do for your skin?

Eliminate wrinkles:
Up till now retionoids are admittedly the only topical treatment that shows dramatic improvements in treating wrinkles. But retionoids work miracles on not very deep lines. To erase or minimize deeper wrinkles you will need some help from fillers.

Even out skin texture:
With years skin thickens and develops rough dead areas. Retinol can help you to smooth out your stratum corneum – skin’s outer layer.

Treat dark circles:
Retionoids stimulate collagen production and help to thicken skin over blood vessels. This way they can minimize appearance of dark circles.

Diminish dullness:
With age skin cells turnover slows down resulting in loss of healthy skin color and glow. Speed it up with retinol treatment and get your glow back!

Fight Blackheads and Whiteheads:
By helping to remove dead skin cells retinols will help to clear up your complexion.

Minimize pores:
Retinoids can help to reduce oil and clean out pores.

Don't forget that retinoids increase sun sensitivity and can have some side-effects such as redness, dryness, itching, and burning.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Beauty Find: The Face Trainer - Miracle Beauty Mask?

Think there is no way other than surgery and injections to fight wrinkles and sagging? Think again! I came across a mention of the FaceTrainer developed by no!no! in the last issue of Marie Claire. To me a stretchy mask that covers your head and face looked more like a torture device than a beauty gadget. It really caught my attention and I looked it up. So how does it work? Using patented technology The FaceTrainer mask “turns simple facial movements into a total resistance training workout” . What it means is that you just wear this mask for 10 minutes every day and do usual facial exercises recommended in a user’s manual.
The miracle mask comes at a high price of 200$ but no!no! is not afraid to run your expectations high as well. They promise that in 30 days The FaceTrainer mask will reduce sagging by 71% and wrinkles by 42%! The Face Trainer is the only device of its kind registered with FDA. Pretty impressing, isn’t it?

The only thing I would recommend is to make sure your boyfriend/husband doesn’t see you doing those exercises. ;-)

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Makeup Tip: Brighter, Bigger Eyes

Here are a couple easy tips on how to brighten up your eyes and make them look bigger.

Apply concealer on the side of your nose by the inner corner of the eye to cover up darkness. Use concealer or highlighter
like YSL Touche Eclat
on your dark circles as well but keep to the inner corner-mid eye area to avoid exaggerating of fine lines. This will illuminate the eye area.

Apply highlighter or light (silver, white, light gold, light beige) shadow in the inner corner of the eye on upper eyelid and just a touch on the lower eyelids.

Offset redness and open up your eyes by lining inner eye rims with a light nude eye pencil. I use Shiseido The Makeup Corrector Pencil It makes such a huge difference, trust me!

Curl your lashes and finish with a black mascara. When applying focus on the middle of your upper and lower eye lashes. This way your eyes will look much bigger.

More makeup tricks:
Anti-Aging Makeup Tips

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Beauty Shopping: La Prairie Light Fantastic Cellular Concealing Brightening Eye Treatment

With a 2 month old baby my under eye circles are darker than usual. When I get a rare chance to go out, I spend most of my prep time camouflaging signs of sleep deprivation around the eyes... Naturally, concealers are crucial in my makeup routine these days! As I’ve mentioned in my previous post I had to restock on long-ago-expired YSL Touche Eclat... which admittedly is a genius product and works miracles with under-eye darkness… When I went to shopping to get my new YSL Touche Eclat I was introduced by a sales girl to La Prairie Light Fantastic Treatment…

After some consideration and testing I’ve made up my mind to choose La Prarie’s concealer over YSL’s Touch Eclat and to give it a try! One of the reasons except from desire to try something new, was a slightly better price. La Prairie Light Fantastic comes with a refill at a better price than Touche Eclat.
So my very first impression is that in comparison to YSL La Prarie’s concealer is more creamy and has less pigment.
I will test it for a longer time and will make a review on its concealing abilities and stay-on power.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Beauty Tip: Don't Drink, Don't Smoke, Stay Away From Sweets

No matter how often people talk about beauty being superficial, it is simply not true. Skin’s beauty is not just about the creams and makeup we layer on it, most of it comes from within. That’s why it is so important how well you take care of your body.

Smoking is a well known enemy of skin. It destroys collagen and elastin, causes broken capillaries and oxygen deficiency in your skin. Did you know that one puff of a cigarette creates over 100 times more free radicals than a UV dose enough to get a suntan? So if you want to have young looking healthy skin longer, quit now!

Moving on to all things sweet. Life without chocolate would be unbearable. But what you should know is that sweets can actually accelerate aging. When sugar gets into our blood, it turns into glucose and binds with protein or lipid molecules. This process is called glycation. Unfortunately, glycation directly impacts such vital proteins in our skin as collagen and elastin. As a result skin becomes stiff and loses its elasticity which leads to the formation of wrinkles. Solution is as simple as that – do not indulge into sweets and simple carbohydrates.

Alcohol is not very often mentioned among skin damaging factors. However it is a known fact that more than one glass of alcohol increases inflammation in the bloodstream. Inflammation means quicker aging. So make sure to count your glasses!
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