Clarins Grand Opening

The number one European luxury skincare brand, Clarins, just opened its very first U.S. store! Clarins can be purchased in many high-end retailers, but now customers can shop at the brand new store and spa in the King of Prussia Mall.

I have been using Clarins products for years. The company is grounded in environmentally responsible sourcing, skincare for every concern, and utilizing nature’s finest ingredients to create the most effective products. Plus as a company they are kind, generous, knowledgeable, and take pride in developing results driven products.

Makeup, body care, skincare for all ages can now be found under one roof, with the added bonus of a customized experience.

Clarins

Clarins

Clarins

On the night of the grand opening, I was so excited to see how Clarins would translate their brand into an entire boutique. Hoping that the philosophy and culture would shine and capture the essence of Clarins. They were able to achieve just that and much more.

The store itself is absolutely beautiful. Open and bright with an inviting floor plan. As you walk in the door to the right is a counter of mini skincare routines- a snap shot of the routines and treatments for those feeling overwhelmed or confused. On the other side is a counter featuring computer tablets for each customer to easily play with color on a Clarins app, allowing you to see which makeup is complementary to your skin tone.

Clarins

Clarins

Did I mention that there is a mini spa in the store? Yes, a mini spa, where you can schedule one of seven spa treatments, 30 minutes for $30. The perfect on the go refresher! Men and women can experience the power and benefits of the Clarins products instantly with any one of these fabulous treatments, focusing on dry or tired skin, eyes, or a gentle massage to soothe away tension and stress.

Clarins

Clarins

Every one of the Clarins expert associates are highly trained and incredibly helpful. They are dedicated to finding the right product for you, ensuring that every visit is a positive and fun experience!

Clarins

Clarins

Clarins

Whether you are looking to find your very first skincare routine or interested in trying something new and effective, plan a visit to the Clarins store. Allow the associates to be your guide, you will not regret it!

Clarins

 

 

Maple Holistics- Vitamin C Facial Serum

Trying new skincare products is always a bittersweet experience for me. On one hand, it is exciting to try the latest in skincare technology or the newest product. On the other hand if you are someone like me with a large amount of allergies and sensitivities, it can be nerve-racking to risk a reaction on your face.

I always recommend a patch test when trying a new product before you apply all over your face or skin. If no reaction is visible, then slowly add more. Recently, I tried the Vitamin C Serum from Maple Holistics.  An organic company that I reviewed a couple years ago and loved. The products are packed with natural and healthy ingredients that you can feel safe using on your skin.

Maple Holistics Vitamin C Serum

It has been roughly two months of using the serum. I always apply a few drops to my palms and pat into my damp, clean face. I make sure that my face has some moisture to avoid any unnecessary pulling on my skin, which can create wrinkles over time. Immediately, the serum dries and leaves my skin feeling a bit tight, almost as if I can instantly feel my skin smoothing. I have also noticed a complete brightening of my skin tone, which would be perfect for those with uneven skin or sun/age spots. It is important to add your favorite moisturizer on top of the serum to hydrate skin. Here are some storing tips for your beauty products, which will increase the length of effectiveness.

Keep in mind that Vitamin C should be clear and any yellowing or brown change in color reflects oxidization, rendering the Vitamin C ineffective.  

My Skincare Routine

Many people ask me about my favorite products and comment on my skin. Thank you for such humbling and kind compliments, I appreciate it! That said, I wanted to take this opportunity to share what face products I use on a daily basis. I have to credit good genes for my skin- my grandmother and mother look amazing, smooth skin and a clear complexion. Veganism is also a large contributing factor.

I am of the mindset that you must treat your body well from the inside out. Slathering on expensive products is almost like creating the “band-aid effect.” I am a celiac and therefore do not eat any gluten. This limits my intake of packaged/processed foods. My diet largely consists of fresh fruits and veggies with protein alternatives including beans and pumpkin seeds for instance. I drink plenty of water throughout the day. When I crave something with a flavor I add fresh ginger root or cucumber to a purified pitcher of water. Exercise is an important factor, avoiding cigarettes and alcohol will keep skin looking youthful as well.

When people ask me what I do to my skin my honest response is “clean living.” A smoke free, alcohol free lifestyle filled with plenty of nutritious food. But I realize that is not enough. There are many who enjoy a glass of wine and red burger from time to time. In this case, here are some of my favorite products. Some of which that I have been using for years and have actually experienced wonderful results.

I love the Orange Cleansing Soap from Mario Badescu as my daily cleanser. It leaves my skin feeling completely clean, silky smooth, and brightened. Of course it does not hurt that it smells like fresh oranges.

I follow this cleanser with Lush Eau Roma Water- a gentle rose and lavender toner that instantly revitalizes my skin. The simple ingredients are perfect for sensitive skin, cooling, and acting as a disinfectant.

Lush

One to two times a week, I like to exfoliate my face using The Microdelivery Peel from Philosophy. This two step peel is packed with vitamin C, which effectively brightens the skin and diminishes fine lines and wrinkles. A peel can also bring skin imperfections to the surface. I recommend applying this peel a few days before an event.

I avoid makeup remover wipes on a regular basis. I do however, really like the wipes from No.7 which remove even stubborn waterproof mascara. In a pinch for convenience these are gentle and worth keeping on hand. I tend to rub my face too hard, which is not recommended. Instead, the product that I love for everyday gentle makeup remover is Purity Made Simple by Philosophy. This is another product that I have been using for years that removes makeup completely and leaves skin feeling soft as opposed to dry and immoveable.

As for anti-aging products, I use Rosa Arctica Lightweight Cream by Kiehl’s daily. This creamy product leaves my skin looking radiant and luminous. I love applying right before my makeup.

Kiehl's

Nighttime, I apply the Black Rose Precious Face Oil from Sisley. This oil immediately fills in my fine lines and by the time I awake, my face looks fresh and youthful.

Sisley

Do not forget to moisturize your lips! Make sure to exfoliate your lips frequently. You can simply use a drop of water or vaseline with sugar to create a scrub. I love the Rose Salve from C.O. Bigelow and apply multiple times in the day.

Rose Salve

During the winter months when my face is exceptionally dry my go to face product is the Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion from Clinique. This scent free lotion can be applied multiple times throughout the day, absorbs fully into skin, and relieves any redness from overly dry skin. Aquaphor is another multi-purpose product that I always have on hand for face and lips. I recommend applying this thick, glycerin based product before bed, which will allow the ointment to absorb into skin thoroughly.

As you begin your shopping process, keep in mind that it is always better to try a particular product before purchasing. Fragrance and texture are just as important as effectiveness. If you have sensitive skin or allergies, be sure to test a small amount of the product on the side of your face to make sure it does not aggravate your skin. Avoid contaminating moisturizers in jars by using an applicator spatula.

Please share your favorite products!

Time to pack for Miami

I have been working tirelessly to put together my suitcase for my upcoming trip to Miami. Packing as I have said before is something of a chore for me, not as bad as unpacking though. I find that the task is much easier when you work little by little. Start with one area like toiletries for instance. This will cut down on the stress. A checklist never hurts. Keeping organized is key to alleviating the pressure and to ensure that nothing is forgotten.

As of now I have the majority of the items I need and believe it is a good time to share some of my finds.

Tips to consider, when you can try purchasing travel sizes. It will reduce the weight of your suitcase. When you are visiting a warm climate and anticipate lying in the sun, make sure to protect your skin. Sun tan lotion is crucial. Make sure to pack gentle products in case you do get a sunburn. I love Dove body wash and after shower care including Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula.

Keep in mind that makeup remover should be gentle as well. A sunburn, excessive makeup, saltwater, chlorine all can take their toll on your skin. My favorite makeup remover and face wash is Purity from Philosophy. Follow with an excellent and hydrating moisturizer like Kiehls Rosa Arctica.

If it is not necessary to blow out your hair on vacation then try embracing your natural hair. I am packing Alterna Bambo Beach Summer Ocean Waves.

As for makeup, pack a bronzing powder to accentuate your tan or apply as a healthy alternative to sun bathing. I am packing Laini Cosmetics bronzers, lipstick, and liquid shimmer. I am packing a small eyeshadow palette in Burgundy times nine from M.A.C. 

More to come. My bathing suit and cover up tips are next!

Toiletries

Beauty products

 

Sisley Paris

Sisley Paris skincare

Neiman Marcus offers a full range of Sisley products and one of their top selling brands. It is very easy to see why once you try these botanical, plant based products. Each product is multi purposeful. A mascara is not just a mascara, but a treatment that acts to lengthen and thicken natural lashes. The Phyto-Lip Twist is not just a beautiful, creamy lip balm, but also contains ingredients that smooth, firm, and maintain elasticity.

Phyto-Lip Twist

The highest priority is placed on developing products for every skin concern from oily and problematic to sun damaged skin and everything in between. Each product is designed to effectively treat, repair, and maintain using the finest ingredients with one of kind formulations. Sisley is a privately owned company by the d’Orano family, who take their time with creating the most effective products- some formulas have taken up to ten years to perfect. Quality is of the utmost importance and researchers within the company are forbidden to check the cost of ingredients for fear that it will dictate what they choose. Instead, developing the most powerful and gorgeous product is the focus.

The result: a line that provides something for everyone whether you are looking for an anti aging line like Sisleya that contains botanical active ingredients and essential oils for noticeable results or you are just beginning your skincare routine and need a everyday cleanser like the Buff and Wash Cleanser.

After attending the lovely beauty blogger event at the King of Prussia Neiman Marcus, I walked away knowing that Sisley is not just an amazing skincare line, but an incredible cosmetic and fragrance brand. The pigments shine and luminosity are truly special. I could not resist making a purchase of the Phyto-Ombre Glow Eyeshadow in Gold. A single swipe of the brush reveals a shimmering and rich color that can only be described as spectacular!

Sisley Paris fragrances

Sisley Paris gold eyeshadow

Please visit the King of Prussia Neiman Marcus for a real treat. Both the very knowledgable and sweet Ingrid Lowrie, the Counter Manager and Karen Forte, the Regional Makeup Artist, will be happy to assist you in finding just the right products for your skin!

Sisley Paris skincare

Clarins Spring 2014 Collection

I have to admit, to my own detriment, I believed that Clarins  was a skincare line alone. Effective, anti-aging, sun care, not necessarily color. Last night I attended a beauty demonstration by Clarins Skin Care Specialist, Jean Fayard, held at the Center City Macy’s.

Jean introduced me to the wonderful world of Clarins. In addition to the standbys, but no less amazing, the incredible Double Serum and Multi-Active Day cream, she showcased the new spring color products. Gorgeous and cheerful corals, pinks, and reds. Creamy blushes that double as lip shades, Light Radiance Boosting Complexion bases in Champagne and Rose. The Golden Glow Booster, a product that I am anxious to try, is a natural self-tanner that is combined with your moisturizer. Just 3 drops give skin a radiant, sun kissed glow!

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I must mention the fragrance of these products. Each one smells better that the next from the botanical and other natural ingredients. I will be trying each one of these products and reporting back to you. Stay tuned, I  truly cannot wait!

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Jean Fayard

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Jean applied #12 Vibrant Light Eye Quartet Mineral Palette to Bridget O’Neill

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Macy’s Flower Show – The Secret Garden http://social.macys.com/flowershow/#/city/philadelphia

RéVive

As we are still enjoying the summer months it is important to protect skin from the harmful effects of the sun. The INTENSITÉ CRÈME LUSTRE DAY by RéVive  is an SPF 30 anti-aging skincare that can be applied to the face and neck. Apply to clean face in the morning.The results are immediate. My face felt soft and looked plumper as my fine lines were diminished. The slight luster in the crème added a glow to my entire face. I believe the only way to describe the results is to use the word healthy. My face appeared healthy looking, smooth, and youthful. After I applied this luxurious crème I hesitated to wear any makeup! A little goes a long way with this lightly botanical scented crème. Make the investment for this skincare product, which will be just as beneficial in the colder months when the sunrays are still present.

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Unpack your bags

Ok, so not the most glamorous title and probably a little insulting, but I only refer to myself. In the morning, I have the puffiest eyes. I tend to lie on my side and unfortunately, gasp, sometimes on my stomach. The best conditions for hair and face, a silk pillowcase, lie completely still on your back to avoid wrinkles, pulled out hair strands and pooling of fluid into your face. However, it is a challenge to lie like a corpse the entire night and for those restless nights, I have the solution, Peptide Eye Serum Depuffing by ARCONA. This cool and creamy serum glides on the delicate under eye skin and immediately starts to reduce the swelling. The soothing lavender fragrance calms your skin giving the appearance of a full night’s sleep. The results are impressive, transformative right before your eyes (no pun intended)!

ARCONA Pepide Eye Serum

Arcona

I am back after trying a number of Arcona products, ready for my review. In April Arcona was introduced to Nordstrom as one of the newest additions to the luxury department store. I am happy to say that this all-natural skincare line did not disappoint. In fact I am thrilled to report that each one of these fabulous products are more effective than the next.

Read More»

“How to Look Expensive” My book review

After attending the Ulta Beauty Grand Opening, I quickly began to read “How to Look Expensive” by Andrea Pomerantz Lustig. And as I said in the previous post it will be your new Beauty Bible, a must have for all women who desire to look their best no matter what your budget.

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Andrea throughly includes all of her beauty tips gathered from her years of working in the business, collecting valuable information and suggestions to looking your personal best. The book takes the reader on a journey from top to bottom, covering the best ways to wear a ponytail, the proper way to apply a smokey eye, to removing the yellow hue from your toenails. Andrea even divulges how to pick the right hair stylist for you and what you should know about your hair before a scissors touches one strand. I was impressed and excited to read this book,devouring in it one sitting, taking note of the helpful and fun ways I can update my makeup collection.

Make sure to pick up or order a copy of this book. Especially with the summer around the corner, throw the book in your carry on before vacation!