Monday, January 31, 2011

C.O. Bigelow Lemon Lip Balm Collection

Bath and Body Works has been releasing new items like crazy the past few weeks but it seems like there has only been one new release from the C.O. Bigelow line and is from the Lemon Lip collection. The original Lemon stick lip balm is one of the few products that I have never tried and had used the Lemon Lip Cream instead. The Lip Cream is very soft and hydrating but I have found that it doesn't last at long as I would like it to. The Lip Balm stick seems to be a thicker hydrator and stays on much longer than the other formula.

Bath and Body Works describes the original product with the following description. "Formulated with a high concentration of lemon oil and extract (3.5%), this addictive Lemon Lip Balm is packed with vitamins and minerals, providing a major dose of Vitamin C. 100% natural lemon flavor provides a tangy burst, while ultra-moisturizing shea butter (1%) nourishes and conditions lips. The creamy formula glides on smooth, leaving lips feeling soft and moisturized. Untinted balm prevents dryness and chapping while providing a dew-kissed sheen." The original is pure lemon and really moisturizes the lips. The stick is a bit more waxy then the cream but stays on much longer and helps to protect the lips in cold, harsh weather.

The original formula has been around for at least a year or two but this season, Bath and Body Works has brought out three new versions of it, all of which are the lemon mixed with berries. All of the new formula lip balms are anti-oxidant spiked to contribute to overall lip health and hydration. The first one is the Lemon and Raspberry blend which I thought was the lightest scent of the three. This one was my least favorite because the balm smelled strongly of lemon with very little raspberry mixed in. The second new fragrance is the Lemon and Blueberry. This one is a medium strength scent with a stronger scent of lemon. However, the blueberry is more prevalent in this one than the raspberry in the other. The last of the new balms is my favorite of the three. Lemon and Black Cherry is a great combination, more tart than the other two but the best mix of the two scents.

So far, I have bought the Lemon and Black Cherry mix but I do plan to purchase the original Lemon formula and maybe the blueberry one also in the near future. I am happy that this line of lip balms has come out to update the line for spring but I would be very happy if the Lemon and Black Cherry came out in an entire body product line. Hint, hint...

photo courtesy of Bath and Body Works

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Illamasqua Valentine's Day 2011 Collection - Throb

I really think that this is the first of its kind, Illamasqua has released a special makeup collection just for Valentine's Day. Normally, Valentine's Day is all about body products and fragrances but this niche company from the United Kingdom has decided to create something totally different. And I thank them from the bottom of my heart for that! This line consists of lip products and new shades in their incredible Nail Varnish product. I see red lips in the promotional picture so this will be a collection for me!

Illamasqua describes the collection as following, "Feel your pulse quicken, your heart throbbing in your chest. These are Illamasqua's latest offerings at the altar of beauty, guaranteed to make you gasp with pleasure. Bite... Awaken your mouth's erotic sensuality with the seductive red of Succubus Intense Lip Gloss or enjoy the power of being unashamedly brazen femme fatale with blood red Sangers Lipstick. ...and Scratch. Throb is a passionate red Nail Varnish, the colour of blood spilled by desperate rejected lovers. Load is a rich, cream coating for nails and Scorn's midnight black finish is filled with contempt for the love of convention".

Valentine's Day makeup collection style...

Intense Lip Gloss - Come out of the shadows with high-shine, colour-rich Illamasqua Intense Lip Gloss in a wide range of bold colours. Create lips that look full and glossy, without feeling sticky. Draw attention to your lips and to you.
- Succubus - blood red

Lipstick - Let your lips speak volumes. Indulge in a colour-intense lipstick with a highly pigmented formula, available in a choice of flawless finishes, from matte to glossy. Illamasqua Lipstick glides on smoothly, for the perfect all-night pout
- Sangers - blood red

Nail Varnish - Leave your mark with bold, rich, vibrant colours. Hardwearing and chip resistant with individual finishes from matte to high gloss. Apply two coats for intensity and use with Illamasqua Nail Base Coat and Illamasqua Nail Top Coat for the perfect finish. Talk with your hands and make a statement.
- Load - rich cream
- Scorn - matte black
- Throb - blood red

This may sound a bit odd but I feel like somehow this collection sums up and expresses all my thoughts about Valentine's Day but does it better than my words can say. I love both of the lip colors but I have yet to really work with the Intense Lip Gloss from this company. I have the Sheer Lip Gloss and it has more pigment in than almost any other brand that I have used, so the Intense must pack a lot of pigment. The Lipstick has me written all over it and all three Nail Varnishs do too.

Illamasqua is not a well known brnad but it is one that I have come to support and adore very quickly after my first two product purchases. I really urge everyone to check out their website and look at their counter in the 5th Avenue Sephora (you can't miss it!). Let me sum it up with this statement, I love this brand the way that I love Caudalie, MAC, and Urban Decay...
I can't wait for the spring collection from this company!

photo courtesy of Illamasqua

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Bathed and Infused Valentine's Day 2011 Fragrances

Bathed and Infused were the first etailers that I ever ordered from and in my first order, I bought one of the Valentine's Day fragrances that still remains a favorite of mine to this day. In fact, my frist action on seeing that these fragrance were up on the website again was to scroll down and make sure that Paradise was on the list of returning fragrances. Thanks goodness that it is since I am running somewhat low on the body lotion and need to order more. So it is time that I made myself an order from this company and restocked that fragrance and find myself some new Valentine's fragrances.

The limited edition Valentine's Day fragrances...

Black Cat - The best-seller from Halloween is back by popular request! A devious blend of black licorice and pumpkin, both of which are scents that reportedly drive men wild. Just wait til you cross his path - meow!

Blue Moon - Blue Moon, I saw you standing alone... Don't be blue on Valentine's Day! Lemon, blueberries, and marshmellow combine in such a dreamy way that you'll know you're not alone.

Box of Chocolates - You know the saying, "Life is like a box of chocolates - you never know what you're going to get."? We say it doesn't matter if you treat yourself to a little bite of each one! This chocolate confection is based on just that philosophy. A little bit of raspberry filling, a little bit of caramel, a touch of almond, and a whole lot of chocolate. Take a little bite of each; we won't tell.

Bridezilla - Ah! We love your incessant chatter about dusty rose and mauve! Cash bar at the reception? Great idea! Definitely monitor your bridesmaids' calorie intake. Soft and innocent, this vanilla and stephanotis fragrance veils the nuptial nightmare that lurks below the surface.

Butt Naked in Bed - Feeling naughty? This sexy, warm, and deliciously fruity fragrance is absolutely refreshing. Blends of apple, pear, melon, vanilla, and musk.

Croissant - As you stroll down the Rue de Rivoli and catch a whiff of something delicious in the air, you're drawn to a small bakery where the fresh croissants are piled neatly in the glass display. "Un croissant, s'il vous plait". Ah, the buttery goodness just melts in your mouth.
Ever After - You'll happily daydream about this floral combination of rose, violets, and bergamot kissed with musk and vanilla. Prince Charming? Who needs him?

Femme Fatale - Sexy sandalwood and vanilla combine with a touch of chocolate that puts the red in lipstick and the high in heels.

First Kiss - Exhilarating as a first kiss, this deceptively simple blend of coconut, cherry, and almond will make you fall in love all over again.

Hearts - A favorite treat every Valentine's Day! The taste of strawberry, peach, orange, and raspberry candies.

Heart's Desire - Longing gently wraps its arms around you and your soul stirs. The feeling inside you swells like the tide and the love in your heart glows bright crimson. Coconut milk, blood orange, and sweet cake will have you falling in love.

Lady Chocolat - Sophisticated. Demure. Irresistable. Lady Chocolat is all about class. A decadent blend of fine chocolates.

Love Notion - The sexy allure of musk and pumpkin tempered with vanilla. This secret recipe is sure to tempt them closer.

Marshmellow Cloud - Butter cookies kissed by Tonka bean float away on this fluffy, whipped marshmellow cloud. A sweet treat for your sweet tooth.

Paradise - Get lost in a lush tropical jungle with the one you love and feast on mangoes, papayas, and pineapples swirled with cotton candy for a sweetness that only the two of you share.

Petit Choux - A classic, decadent pastry that pays homage to the romantic rose. Rich pastry cream and whipped cream flavored with rose water. A lovely floral with creaminess mixed in.

Pucker Up - Pucker up, buttercup! This tart citrus blend is sure to be a treat for your kisser. Polynesian grapefruit and a touch of sweet citrus are blended into this fresh, fabulous blend.

Pure Indulgence - Ahhh, who doesn't love to be pampered every once in a while? give your senses a treat with this complex fragrance that begins with a hint of brown sugar, delicate pink freesia petals, Madagascar vanilla bean, pure jasmine absolute, and ends with a slight touch of nag champa.

Romance - Every woman wants a little romance in their life...an elegant sensual scent that is sweet and enchanting. Blends of orchid, freesis, amber, and vanilla.

Sensuous Sandalwood - The rich, alluring scent of this sandalwood fragrance is incredibly sexy, and works incredibly well as a scent for a man or a woman. Great for when you want a lush, woody, sophisticated aroma.

She's No Tart - Hey! Just because she's sexy and confident doesn't mean you can judge her. She may not be a tart, but the fragrance she wears has a bite. A floral with a twist: Lilac and Orchid touched with mint and lime.

Starry Eyes - What do you see when you look deep into your lover's eyes? Why, the heavens of course. Shooting stars and comets bubble across the sky as heliotrope, musk, amber, and a touch of tonka bean waft through the air.

Texas Rose - The yellow rose of Texas is the only one for me... A very clean and smooth floral fragrance.

Violet Chiffon Cake - This light-as-air chiffon cake is dipped in sweet icing lightly scented with fragrant violets. Romantic and totally decadent!

Vixen - You know you're sexy and you need a scent that is as seductive and alluring as you are! This sensual blend brings together black currants, orange, delicately soft amber, vanilla, water lily, and hints of black pepper and coriander.

Wine & Roses - When it's all about romance, fill up your glass and let it go to your head. what could be more perfect than rich red wine and fragrant red roses? Put your heart in this recipe and over-indulge a little.

In addition to descriptions of the new scents that have just been released, I also want to give you ladies some details about my favorite products. My favorites are the Tea-Infused Body Wash, the Body Fluff, the Whipped Sugar Scrub, and the Bubble Bath.

Tea-Infused Body Wash - Clean rinsing yet moisturizing, our body was will be waiting for you by the tub or shower to help you remove the grime of the daily grind. Count on it to lather well and leave your skin feeling super clean, soft, and lightly scented. We also infuse our body wash with one of nature's most potent anti-oxidants, white tea extract. Studies show that anti-oxidants, like white tea extract, tame free radicals, helping to minimize the signs of aging.

Body Fluff - This is are almost famous whipped cream made from 25% pure shea butter. This thick, rich, but never greasy unique body butter disappears into your skin leaving it protected, moisturized, and healed. It's perfect for any type of skin and you'll love the texture. Just what's needed for the harsh conditions of winter, but light enough to use during the summer too!

Whipped Sugar Scrub - Whip it! Whip it real good! Our new Whipped Sugar Scrub will help you do just that to your rough skin. This creamy, whipped scrub has the skin softening goodness of shea butter, and a special blend of exotic oils. And best of all it leaves your skin exfoliated and conditioned, but not greasy. It's the perfect scrub to whip your dry skin into shape!

Bubbles - Bubbles, bubbles everywhere!! Just what you need after a long day. Lay back and relax as your worries slip away. Stay until the candles run out or you've finished that great book. Get it in your favorite scent for a bath time treat!!

Bubbles is the newest of the products so I have only used it in one fragrance but I have found that it is a great bubble bath and compares favorably to most others that I have tried. The body wash is fantastic, tons of lather and rinses clean but doesn't dry skin out. The Body Fluff is best for very dry skin and really helps to hydrate. And the Whipped Sugar Scrub is just wonderful, very scrubby and rinses clean.

My fragrance shopping list is quite long from this company. Paradise is my first choice since I need to restock Fluff ad order the Bubbles and Whipped Sugar Scrub. Petite Choux is my second choice since it is both rose scented and based on sweet pastries. Box of Chocolates, Butt Naked in Bed, Croissant, Ever After, Femme Fatale, First Kiss, Hearts, Lady Chocolat, Romance, Sensuous Sandalwood, Texas Rose, and Wine & Roses. Texas Rose is brand new and I am very interested in this one since Texas holds the rose capital of the United States. This is going to be a huge order...

photo courtesy of Bathed and Infused

Friday, January 28, 2011

Clarins Spring 2011 Collection - Neo Pastels

Neo Pastel is the newest collection for this season from Clarins. I haven't been on the Clarins bandwagon very long but so far everything that I have seen inthe past few months, I have loved it all. Neo translates to "new" so this collection appears as though it will be a new take on the tradition pastel shades that are offered every spring season. Clarins seems to be a more conservative company so I am interested in how they are going to rework pastel shades, keep them fresh, and still able to be worn professionally. "Inspired by art and watercolours, colour goes pastel this Spring". This collection promises to hold lovely eye makeup shades that I will end up wearing all spring.

Time to see this new take on pastels...

Blush Prodige Illuminating Cheek Colour - This soft mineral blush powder glides perfectly over skin and blends naturally and evenly. Each luminous harmony is accompanied by a complementary shade duo to highlight cheekbones with an immediate and natural-looking glow. Matte colors for a natural result and iridescent effects to complement. Catches light and enhances facial features. New gold packaging, engraved leaf, mirror, high quality brush.
- 01 Lovely Rose - midtone rose shades
- 02 Soft Peach - pale peach shades
- 03 Miami Pink - light pink shades
- 04 Sunset Coral - warm coral bronze shades
- 05 Rose Wood - deep warm rose shades
- 06 Spiced Mocha - deep warm bronze shades

Instant Smooth Line Correcting Concentrate - A portable version of Instant Smooth Touch that can be applied directly onto lines for touch-ups throughout the day. The high precision silicone tip targets the heart of the wrinkle to fill it in and smooth it away.

Eye Quartet Mineral Palette - An eye palette inspired by an artist's watercolor palette. Composed of 6 eye shadows, formulated with mineral powders and developed into 3 harmonies (pink, brown, violet), plus an eye liner. Use dry for a transparent makeup result or wet for a more intense result. New gold packaging, large mirror, applicators.
- pale and deep pink/violet/bronze and jet black eye liner

Wonder Perfect Mascara - A multi-dimensional mascara, 3-in-1 mascara, that ensures oversized volume, curl, and length, with an instant and intense effect. From the first brush stroke, lashes are coated from root to tip with smooth, even, deeply pigmented colour and a beautful lash look. 3-in-1 capabilites to ensure impressive volume, length, and curl. Incredibly thick, volumized lashes, perfectly separated, no clumping. Infinitely long lashes, highlighted along their base by a superb eye liner effect. Lashes with a spectaculat curl that always remain supple.
- 01 Black - black
- 02 Brown - medium brown
- 03 Blue - bright navy blue

Rouge Hydra Nude Smoothing Cream Lipstick - A nourishing, moisturizing, and smooth cream lipstick that colours the lips in radiant nude tones.
- 01 Pastel Rose - medium nude rose
- 02 Pastel Coral - warm medium coral
- 03 Pastel Beige - neutral medium beige
- 04 Pastel Brown - warm bronze

Joli Rouge Perfect Sheer Shine Lipstick - High shine enhanced by long-hold, crystal colours, a luxurious texture and genuine lip care benefits that protect and beautify lips all day.
- 01 Melon - creamy sheer coral

My favorite item from this pastel collection is exactly as I thought it would be, I love the eye shadow palette and I can see myself getting a large amount of wear from it this spring. It also answered my question thjat arose from when I initially looked at the promo picture of the collection. The model has on black eye liner, all around the eyes and it looked like nothing else in the collection. I would be more likely to use it to create a cat eye with one of the lighter shades in the palette.

I really like a bunch of the products in this collection aside from the palette. The Cheek Colour looks amazing and I love both the Lovely Rose and Miami Pink shades. I can see both of these shades working well my pale, pink-based skin. Of the lipsticks, I prefer the Rouge Hydra Nude Smoothing Cream Lipstick over the other formula. 01 Pastel Rose I am hoping will turn turn out to be a my-lips-but-better shade that can help me get over MAC's Way to Love. My last pick is the mascara that is included with this collection, the words "impressive volume, length, and curl" have grabbed my attention.

photo courtesy of Clarins

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Bliss Eau de Toilette

I feel like the past few fragrances that I have checked out have been the first of their kind from their company. Last time, it was an accessories company branching out into fragrance and this time around it is a skin and body product company moving into this territory. The latest company is Bliss, a line that is known for it's quality body products and famous spas. The first fragrance from this company is based on their spa and the atmosphere created in them. Sephora is the exclusive retailer for this product so I turned to their website for a description of the product and the notes.

Sephora places this fragrance into the floral family. "This 'in-spa-rational' fragrance captures the essence of Bliss spas: the best possible feeling in the world. It's a mood-boosting fragrance with a vibe that's hip, fresh, and modern. This scent is light enough to spray every day for a signature fragrance - but exceptional enough to wear on special occasions. A fabulous French perfumer and longtime Bliss client formulated this beautiful blend with notes of vibrant citrus and dewy greens. Bright florals give way to lasting bergamot, cucumber, lily, ylang ylang, and violet". This fragrance reminded me of "spring in a bottle" the second that I sprayed some on for the first time in Sephora.

The notes of this fragrance are: Bergamot, Dewy Greens, Cucumber, Lily, Ylang Ylang, Violet. Based on the notes and the way that this fragrance developed on me, I actually place it more into the "fresh" category than the "floral". The green notes and the cucumber are the strongest on me and compromise the heart of the fragrance instead of the violet note.

This fragrance is sold in the EDT however I found that the lasting power is more along the lines of a body mist. I really only got about two to three hours until I needed to reapply. For myself, that was the major drawback because I really liked the fragrance otherwise. I think this is a great choice for the warmer weather especially if you are somehow how either doesn't like strong fragrances or has a significant other who is sensitive to fragrance. This is great fragrance for all those who are looking for a lighter, green fragrance to wear during the warm weather months.

photo courtesy of Sephora

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

MAC Tough Love

MAC has made a collection of lip products and shades that have been chosen by the makeup artists that would appropriate for use on Valentine's Day. From what I am seeing on first glance, this collection appears to be very much like the one that was released at this time last year and contains a collection of current shades and no new products/shades. "Pucker up this Valentine's Day with a collection of tough and tender shades for lips celebrating dark hearts & scintillating secrets certain to bring out all your devious desires". Most of these shade appear to deep or bright pigments lip shades so if this is the type of look that you enjoy, this collection will help to highlight many of MAC's offerings in this area.

The Valentine's Day collection...

Lipstick - Colour plus texture for the lips. Stands out on the runway. Simmers on the street! What made MAC famous.
- Girl About Town - fabulous fuchsia (Amplified Creme)
- Rebel - vivid pinkish-purple (Satin)
- Cyber - intense blackish purple (Satin)
- Dubonnet - deepened claret (Amplified Creme)
- Sin - deep dark blue red (Matte)
- Ruby Woo - vivid bluish-red (Matte)

Tinted Lipglass - A unique lip gloss available in a wide variety of colours that can create a high gloss, glass-like finish or a subtle sheen. Designed to be worn on its own, over Lip Pencil or Lipstick, Tinted Lipglass is the perfect product for creating shine that lasts. It's pigmented, very shiny, and can impart subtle or dramatic colour. It contains Jojoba Oil to help soften and condition the lips. Tinted Lipglass is packaged in a convenient bottle with a sponge tip applicator that provides a quick, smooth, even application.
- Shock-o-late - golden brown
- Pop Mode - plum mixed up with bronze shimmer

Lipmix - A highly pigmented opaque cream used to mix and customize lipstick, to create any colour, texture, or look desired for lipcolour. Contains soothing emollients to help condition the lips. Available in a wide range of shades including Frost, Matte, or Gloss textures.
- Black - pure black
- Crimson - deep red
- Burgundy - deep plum

Lip Pencil - A pencil designed for shaping, lining, or filling in the lip. Lip Pencils have a smooth, creamy texture that is perfect for lining the lips or filling them in. They are long-lasting and available in a wide selection of colours that each work well with many different lipstick shades.
- Currant - intense reddish-purple
- Chestnut - intense brown
- Burgundy - brownish-burgundy
- Brick - intense golden red
- Nightmoth - blackened plum

I have never seen the Lipmix product before, making me wonder if it a Pro product only. I am very interested in the Crimson shade, I wonder if it would work as a lip stain or if it can only can the shade the shade of lipsticks that I already own. This is a product that I must get to counter to try out. I don't like any of the Tinted Lipglasses, all of them are too brown for my skintone. I think that many of the Lipsticks might be much too dark for my skintone, my favorite of the bunch is Ruby Woo, a shade that I have been looking at for about a year or two now but just never got around to buying. Dubbonet is the only other shade that I like from these choices. Lip Pencils, I have never gotten into so I won't be picking up any of these.

I think that I liked last year's choices of pinks and lighter reds better...

photo courtesy of MAC

Bath and Body Works Aromatherapy Vanilla Verbena

Everywhere that you turn around in Bath and Body Works, you will see something new. We have already talked about the Island Escape body product collection and now we are going to look at the latest Aromatherapy fragrance in the Stress Relief line, Vanilla Verbena. This fragrance was introduced last fall to certain stores and the website but now it is available in all the stores and I have been able to try it out. So far, I have been able to try out the body lotion (I received a small lotion from the company) and the body mist (in the store). I was a bit surprised that this fragrance was being released now around Valentine's Day instead of a Sensual fragrance like last year. But I guess the company needs to change things up every few years... "Warm Vanilla and crisp Verbena soothe your body and mind".

The products that are offered in this new fragrance...

Body Wash & Foam Bath - Relax and unwind. Vanilla Absolute has a soothing effect on body and mind. This fast-foaming body wash is infused with soothing skin conditioners, while an aromatherpay blend of essential oils and absolutes soothes your body and mind. For a relaxing bubble bath, add a couple of ounces to warm, running water. This special formula contains precious botanicals. White birch and bamboo extracts are known to purify and soothe skin while pearl powder helps condition skin.

Body Mist - Relax and unwind. Vanilla Absolute has a soothing effect on body and mind. This refreshing bosy mist is infused with an aromatherapy blend of essential oils that soothes your mind and body so you can relax. Spritz all over body anytime you need to soothe and calm.

Massage Oil - Relax and unwind. Vanilla Absolute has a soothing effect on body and mind. Massage this stress relieving oil into freshly cleansed skin at the end of a busy day, or, add to warm running bathwater for the ultimate relaxing bath. This formula contains Sunflower Oil, rich in the anti-oxidant Vitamin E, to moisturize skin and keep it young-looking.

Body Lotion - Relax and unwind. Vanilla Absolute has a soothing effect on body and mind. This ultra-creamy, nourishing body lotion is formulated to give skin long-lasting moisture, while an aromatherapy blend of essential oils and absolutes soothes your body and mind. This special formula contains precious botanicals and minerals. White Water Lily and Malachite are known to help soothe skin so it looks and feels its best.

Sugar Scrub - Relax and unwind. Vanilla Absolute has a soothing effect on body and mind. Use during a shower or bath morning or evening to soothe skin, while an aromatherapy blend of essential oils and absolutes soothes your body and mind so you can relax. Scoop out a handful of this skin softening sugar scrub and massage gently over skin. This formula contains exfoliating sugar and a special moisturizing blend of Sunflower, Safflower, and Sweet Almond and Jojoba oils to leave skin silky smooth.

This is scent that I have found out smells much better when I apply it then when it is just smelled in the bottle. I don't love this fragrance but I don't dislike it, it is one of those that I wouldn't have tried had I not gotten a small bottle from the company. When applied, the lotion just smells like plain vanilla with my skin chemistry. While this may not be a fragrance for me, I still love the Aromatherapy line overall (especially the body wash, body lotion, and sugar scrub) and highly recommend the Lavender Vanilla and Eucalytpus Spearmint fragrances.

photo courtesy of Bath and Body Works

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Kate Spade Twirl

Accessory powerhouse company Kate Spade has now launched their first fragrance. This fragrance was seen for the first time during the July Nordstrom Event and is know available at all major beauty stores and department stores. My favorite Kate Spade purse is a treasured possession of mine and I make sure to check out the newest collection every season in order to find another treasure. With the release of this perfume, I can broaden my horizons with this company and move them into my fragrance collection. This fragrance is considered to be a floral fragrance, however also reminds me a gourmand with the macaroon note in it.

Sephora provides the following overall description of the fragrance. "'She had a cocktail in hand and confetti in her hair.' Created to evoke a flirty feeling of 'joie de vivre', Twirl by Kate Spade encapsulates the floral fragrance of a garden in bloom, finished with a twist of fresh fruit. It's the perfect cocktail, so to speak - equally at ease at an afternoon lawn party or a night on the town. Infused with a dash of happiness and embodying that final twirl a girl does before she heads out for the day, this fragrance's fruity top notes sparkle with pink watermelon, blackberry, and red currant. Heart notes of fresh flowers take the next dance, including orange blossom, jasmine, and magnolia. The fragrance dries down to a base of luminous musks and a touch of French macaroon - straight from the patisserie, of course. The flacon is round with gold dots, it's like a disco ball in a bottle filled with champagne".

The notes are: Mandarin, Bergamot, Baies Rose, Pink Watermelon, White Peach, Red Currant, Blackberry, Star Jasmine, Magnolia, Orange Blossom, Tiare Flower, Sun-kissed Skin Accord, French Macaroon, Luminous Musk, Amber.

Personally, I found that this fragrance's macaroon note came out the strongest on me and dominated the whole fragrance. On my skin, very little of the fruity top notes came out and the fragrance is more floral and gourmand. I do agree that this fragrance can be worn day or night, it reminds me of Marc Jacobs Daisy in that way, normally I have a fragrance that I wear throughout the work/school day then I have another one that I spray on right before I get ready to go out. I love that this fragrance works equally well either way. After trying this fragrance at Sephora, one spray on my wrist lasted about six hours with the magnolia notes being the strongest overall and the gourmand notes being the strongest toward the end.

The bottle that houses this fragrance is simply lovely and would be great displayed on a bureau or dressing table. I love the beautiful hammered gold cap and the red accents on the bottle. This is one of the best perfume bottles that has come out recently, I love the return to simple, classy perfume bottles instead of bright and in-your-face packaging.

Like I yet another obsession from Kate Spade...

photo courtesy of Sephora

Monday, January 24, 2011

Philosophy Valentine's Day 2011 Products

More Valentine's Day! I must say that even though I hate the holiday, I always find tons of products to buy from the limited edition releases that come out this time of the year. This year has been no different so far so I am actually excited to look at more products now. This time around, we are looking at Philosophy's limited edition fragrances and sets made for the holiday. On first glance of the Philosophy page on the Sephora website, it appears that most of the new items are surrounding a fragrance named Sweet On You, based on the fragrance of the ever-populat Valentine's Day candy hearts. Philosophy Valentine's Day 3-in-1s have the reputation of starting out as limited edition fragrance but then becoming so popular that they are introduced as part of the permanent collection, such as Pink Frosted Layer Cake and Red Velvet Cake. I can't wait to see how it plays out this time around!

As noted above, Sweet On You seems to be the biggest release of the season. It is made on both individual full-sized products and smaller sizes in a set. First, we are going to look at the individual products; the 3-in-1, the body lotion, and the lip gloss. "A three-in-one Shampoo, Shower Gel, & Bubble Bath in the delectably sweet scent of candy hearts. This candy-scented gel is extra rich and creamy to gently cleanse and condition, leaving skin and hair feeling ultra-soft". The matching lotion is described as, "A moisturizing body lotion in the delectably sweet scent of candy hearts. This ultra-rich body lotion is formulated with nuturing shea butter and natural olive and macademia nut oils to help soften skin and aid in moisture retention. The luxurious formula melts easily into skin for a non-greasy feel and skin that's irresistably soft". There is also a lip shine available in this new fragrance, "A sweet, high-gloss, high-flavor lip shine. This cheery lip shine is lip-smacking delicious. The emollient formula hydrates, smoothes, and softens lips while providing a sheer, beautiful shine and a hint of natural color. Its mouthwatering candy hearts flavor tastes so yummy, it will encourage plenty of sweet kisses on Valentine's Day". This lip gloss gives a hint of rose colored shimmer when applied to the lips.

In addition to single products, Sweet On You is available in a little set perfect for gift giving. "A set that includes candy heart-scented Shampoo, Shower Gel, & Bubble Bath, Body Lotion, and high-gloss, high-flavor Lip Shine. This sweet candy-scented trio of moisturizing formulas condition skin and hair and leave lips feeling smooth with beautiful shine. Its the sweetest gift you can give to the sweetheart in your life". The body products in this set of 4 oz. sizes instead of the usual 16 oz. sizes that are sold individually.

Candy hearts are a favorite candy of mine so I love that Philosophy made a whole line of products devoted to this fragrance. I want to buy all of the single products and will be stocking up on this one just in case it stays limited edition. Though I am willing to bet this fragrance will be so popular that it will either become permanent or be renamed and brought out again in another season. This is turning into a very strong Valentine's Day, beauty wise...

photo courtesy of Sephora

Sunday, January 23, 2011

LUSH Valentine's Day 2011 Products

There is nothing like LUSH to make a blah holiday fun and something to look forward to! This year's limited edition holiday products are sure to go fast since the United Kingdom website has been shut down (for full details visit the company's website). So order now from the United States website to make sure that you have all the products you need well before the holiday. "Let us proudly present our collection of suitably bizarre, romantically related Valentine's Day goodies for your bath and shower. It's not what it looks like, it's what you do with it that matters".

I love LUSH!!!

Magic Mushroom Bubble Bar - Magic Mushroom has two distinct scents. In the red cap, there's the nostalgic fragrance of our Yummy Yummy Yummy shower gel (sniff); and in the white bit, we've used our signature creamy vanilla scent. Together, it blends to give you bubbles that smell like a bowl of fresh strawberries covered in cream. There won't be mushroom for anyone else in your life - or bath - when you've got one. Welcome back little mushroom. It's been one long year since we said goodbye to our exceptionally fruity, sweetly creamy Bubble Bar and it's been tough. Make mounds of fluffy bubbles with this limited edition romancer.

The Ex Factor Bath Bomb - Valentine's Day isn't for everyone. It can make your blood boil when you're not with anyone and it can do the same when you are. Our blue bath bomb was invented for wronged lovers and those who dislike the romantic sentiments of Valentine's Day. While it has the cute blue colour of a smurf, there's nothing quite so sweet about Ex Factor. Its musky, creamy scent and dissolvable limbs make for a wickedly fun bath, where you can fizz away appendages and head until your thirst for revenge has been satisified.

Lust Perfume - It's a very heady perfume that's not for the shy and retiring. It starts off as a strong, pure jasmine and warms on the skin to a seductive floral scent. It lasts for hours and hours. Unlike some other things we could mention. Comes in both an EDT and a solid perfume stick.

Imogen Rose Perfume - He wanted to create a fragrance that smelt like real Damask roses, so he used the finest rose absolute with orris butter for a baby powder note that captures softness and innocence. Contains the following notes: rose, bergamot, vetivert, ambrette sead, tonka, orris. Comes in both an EDT and a solid perfume stick.

Frog Prince Bath Bomb - Another magical creation by Michelle, The Frog Prince is an extremely handsome and regal frog with a pair of vibrantly red and kissable lips. Give him a quick peck, drop him in the tub, and wait for your prince to come. Simon's new fragrance is an aphrodisiac blend with sweet undertones; he used jasmine, neroli, and rosewood to create a sensual fragrance for those longing for their prince - or princess - to come. It's not all about the fragrance with this one; it's also brimming with cocoa butter and almond oil for a luxuriously moisturizing soak.

Love Birds Soap - We've got something even better than Love soap this year. Love Birds is a creamy cake of jasmine and vanilla loveliness that everyone should try without hestitation. It has a softer scent than Love, with a powdery sweet fragrance that remind you of young love. Love Birds is moisturizing and Helen scented it with our popular Keep It Fluffy fragrance; it's very girly, very fluffy, and exceedingly sweet. With Mo's help, this is one of Michelle's fantastic ideas come to life! Everyone can use this beautiful hand and body soap - although, it would be especially good for people with dry skin, as it is softening.

I am so happy that the Magic Mushroom Bubble Bar is back again this year! This is my first item on my shopping list and I am considering getting a few so I can have back-ups to get me through the rest of the year. The Imogen Rose perfume also caught my eye since I haven't bought a rose fragrance all winter (I know!), this one is must try for me. The Lust perfume also sounds like a fragrance for me to try out so I must drive out to nearest store very soon, jasmine fragrances usually works out for so I am betting this one is a winner too. The Frog Prince Bath Bomb is just so cute and I love it, I will buy a few of those to give as gifts too. The last item on my shopping list is a bar or two of Love Birds soap because it is jasmine scented and because it is great for dry skin (mine is horrible right now).

photo courtesy of LUSH

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Another Shot of Anne Hathaway at The Golden Globes

All my raving about Anne Hathaway's look at this year's Golden Globes can now be added to. Her nails were by Lippmann Collection and the polish shades were chosen to keep the full focus on her lovely Armani Prive gown. Deborah used the shade "I Dreamed You" on her nails, a starry opalescent pink, followed up with Rachel Zoe's favorite top coat, Addicted to Speed, to protect her nails.

Some looks are just perfect and this is one of them...

photo courtesy of Deborah Lippmann

Smashbox Spring 2011 Collection - In Bloom

Last year, the spring collection from Smashbox of one of my favorite releases of the entire year. I loved all the products in Heartbreaker and that Scarlett Johansson was the model for the line. I am so excited to look at the collection for this spring becuase I am hoping that I will love it just as much as last year. This year's collection is called In Bloom and is based on the flowers that grow and bloom in the springtime. Since we all know how much I love flowers and spring, this is an obvious collection for me to collect. On first glance, I am seeing a fantastic eye palette that looks like a keeper for me..

Here is the collection...

In Bloom Eye Shadow Palette and Brush - Ultra-pretty eye looks are just a few steps away with this spring-fresh palette of 10 soft shimmers and mattes. The luxe shadows are arranged in duos for surefire color coordination, or use the brush included in the palette to mix-and-match your own custom look. Make the most out of the palette by using darker shades such as Iris Blue and Shimmery Copper as eye liner. Using Cream Eye Liner Brush #9, apply along the lower lash line for a look that's defined, yet soft and diffused.
- Pink Lily/Lavender Gray/Golden Rose/Warm Taupe/Bone/Soft Orchid/Iris Blue/Shimmery Copper/Moss/Nude

In Bloom Creamy Cheek Duo - The look of spring? A beautifully stained cheek resembling a natural flush. This lush creamy cheek color is the fail-proof way to get it! Wear the creamy shades alone, or blend together to create your own customized shade. Blend into cheeks using fingertips or Foundation Brush #13. Dab lightly onto lips for a refreshing hint of color.
- Peony - bright pink
- Blushing - soft pink

In Bloom Soft Focus Powder Liner - Create a soft, smoldering eye in seconds with this innovative new formula. The loose powder liner imparts a defined, yet diffused look that's always pretty and never harsh. Use this powder liner on the go (or in a pinch) as an eye shadow! Simply pat the product gently onto the lids, and then blend out with a brush.
- Dark Brown - deep brown
- Heather - charcoal gray

In Bloom Limitless Long Wear Lip Gloss - Our much-loved, long-wearing gloss now comes in 2 just-been-picked colors! Get luscious shine that stays put for up to 6 hours, while protecting your pout with SPF 15. Plus, the contoured wand hugs lips for easy, one-coat application. This lip formula is packed with vitamins A, C, and E, so try exfoliating first with our Emulsion Lip Exfoliant to get the full benefits of these nourishing antioxidants.
- Endless Kiss - coral
- Timeless - soft pink

In Bloom Artificial Light Powder - Inspired by our bestselling Artificial Light Luminizing Lotion! Use this soft, shimmery powder as a highlighter and brightener for a gorgeous glow. Apply to the inner corners of eyes, down the bridge of the nose, above brows, and high on cheekbones. Tap out a small amount and mix with your favorite body lotion. Then apply to arms, legs, and decollete for a subtle shimmer.
- shimmery soft nude

This is a lovely collection for this spring! My favorite product is the Limitless Long Wear Lip Gloss in Timeless, this shade will work against strong eye makeup or for a natural, professional day look. I love the Eye Palette and I am willing to bet that I can create looks with all of the shades. The Creamy Cheek Duo is another winner for me since I love cream blushes and have the hardest time trying to find them. Smashbox's spring collections are always a winner and usually end up being their best collection of the whole year.

photo courtesy of Smashbox

Friday, January 21, 2011

Dior Gris City

Gris City is a pre-spring collection that was just released the other week from Dior. This little collection consists of nail polish shades only, all of which are named after streets in major cities such as New York City and Paris. The shades of nail polish are all silvers and grays, which makes sense since "gris" is the word for "gray" in the French language. I have been interested in silver lacquer shades since last fall so this promises to be a strong collection for me. And when it is combined with name from Paris and New York... This little collection has me written all over it.

"As an invitation to an urban voyage, Dior creates an exclusive collection of 3 Dior Vernis. The collection "Gris City" reinvents Monsieur Dior's beloved color gray for the 3 capitals of fashion and luxury: Paris, London, and New York..." Need. Want. Love.

The description of the nail polish from the Dior website, "Never before has the color of the new Dior Vernis displayed such lacquered and vibrant shine! A cocktail of Shine and Sparkle Amplifying active ingredients directs pigments and pearly particles to enhance light reflection tenfold. Once again, the array of enchanting shades created by Tyen reflect Galliano's imagination and the spirit of Dior fashion shows. Application is even easier with the new brush. Dior Vernis also features a new chip-resistant formula the protects and embellishes the nails, day after day".

The three shades...

- Gris Montaigne, Paris - Sleek and elegant, the very iconic color of the Dior House.
- Bond Street, London - A gray London fog infused with a touch of blue, urban chic.
- NY 57th, New York - A metallic asphalt, a homage to the dusky light of the Manhattan skyline.

I predict that all three shades will sell out very quickly, especially in the cities after they were named for. I can't even pick which one is my favorite becuase I just love all three of them and would rock all three of them from the end of winter all the way until the next holiday season. I think these are lovely shades and I think this collection was a great idea on the part of Dior. Dior and my favorite cities? What a combination!

photo courtesy of Dior

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Lipstick Queen Jean Queen

If you are like myself and 99% of the rest of the females in this country, jean shopping is the bane of your shopping trips and it takes forever to find the perfect pair. Their are many shopping trips that I went on and bought jeans that I thought would work but then hung in my closet until my next session of spring cleaning. Now lip gloss shopping is a whole different story...

As hard as it is to find the perfect pair of jeans, denim is the uniform of the United States and is the most bought article of clothing. Based on the American love of jeans, Lipstick Queen creator Poppy King has created of line of lip products called Jean Queen, a shade meant to complement the jean shade and the wearer of the jeans. "Jean Queen is a lovingly created special pink that offsets the blue in the denim and lights up your whole face at the same time. One stroke and you and your jeans go from drab to fab! Super silky feel on the lips and just the right amount of shine to contrast with the very matte nature of denim. Suits all skin tones, ethnicities, ages, and jean styles. Comes in both lipstick and gloss. The lipstick is super sheer, the gloss is a little more opaque with a higher shine factor. They can be worn alone or together for maximum impact...and is the perfect solution to add some glamour to your casual (and not so casual) looks!"

Jean Queen Lip Gloss - Gorgeous natural pink gloss designed to perfectly offset denim and all your casual wear. Totally sticky-free and rich pigment for high impact coverage.

Jean Queen Lipstick - Gorgeous natural pink lipstick in a super sheer moisturizing tint designed to perfectly offset denim and all your casual wear. Go from drab to fab in one stroke!

I love both of these shades, I must hit up New York City and get to Bendels before they totally sell out of these two products. I love that these shades work with all shades of denim since I own about fifteen different of jeans. I am willing to bet that these shades are going to be two perfect shades for my skin and knowing that they are Lipstick Queen, they will be great quality and will stay true and last all day.

photo courtesy of Lipstick Queen

Urban Decay Naked Palette - Updated Version

Yesterday I got an email from Urban Decay that stated their solution to the issue of the Naked Palette being sold out everywhere. It was stated in the email that the reason that this product is so hard to find is that the company is having a hard time producing the eye liner duo included with the palette. Their solution is to introduce the palette with the Good Karma Eye Shadow Brush (part of the Spring 2011 collection) instead of the eye liner pencil.

My thoughts? If you don't have the palette, this will help you to get one faster than before. However, I love the pencils that are offered with this palette. Zero os the same traditional shade so this one could be bought at anytime. However, Whiskey was introduced with the palette and to my knowledge, this shade is not available by itself yet. In addition, the price of the brush is more than the eye liner duo so the price of the palette has risen. Urban Decay really knows when they have a hit.

For myself, I would consider purchasing the new version only if I was still on a waiting list for the palette. I prefer the version with the liners in it and am SO glad that I have had my palette for months now.

photo courtesy of Sephora

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Kat Von D High Frequency Mascara

I am finally onto a new mascara after using Benefit's BadGal Lash for the past few months. Yeah, I know. We all know that I am mascara obsessed but for some reason I decided to go back to a standby of mine instead of heading into Sephora and buying any new mascara to see how it performs. I haven't tried any type of mascara from Kat von D and I was originally attracted to this product because of how pretty the packaging is. I have had a great experience with her eye shadow palettes so I wasn't hesitant to buy this product. Besides, I have been trying to break my makeup rut since the beginning of the year and trying a different brand of mascara certainly won't kill me.

This mascara is made to curl, separate, and volumize lashes, there is no mention of lengthening properties with this mascara formula. I wanted to point one thing out before I begin to review this mascara. Mascara cannot curl your lashes, it can only hold any natural curl that you have or hold the curl after you use an eye lash curler on your lashes. Already, the description of this product is promising something that cannot be done only with the use of the mascara. That being stated, I found that it held the curl well from when I used an eye lash curler before mascara application.

Sephora gives the following description of this product on their website, "Create a sophisticated and intriguing eye look with this exceptional formulation. Polyester film forming makes for stellar flexibility, application, adhesion, and curl retention. The unique, easy-to-use applicator brushes lashes one by one, delivering outstanding results". I prefer the full description of this product in which they state "curl retention" instead of just calling the product a curling mascara. With the words "polyester film forming" in this description, it seems that this mascara falls into the category of "tubing mascara" and fully coats lashes from root to tip.

After first opening the tube, my first thought was that the brush was much smaller than many of the mascaras that I am used to. And it surprised me that I actually had a bit of difficulty working with it the first time since I am so used to the huge mascara brushes (however I got it down pat within one application). This mascara excels at creating separate lashes and retaining the curl from the curler. My lashes look lush and naturally full. It is a good (not great) volumizing mascara, it adds a nice amount of volume but doesn't stand a chance when compared to Diorshow Iconic or Bare Escentuals Buxom Lash. Of course, the brush size of this one is nothing compared to those so I am not thinking that it is made to compete with the super-volumizing mascaras. This is wetter formula and gives my lashes a bit of sheen. So far, I haven't had problems with smudging or flaking that are common with a wetter formula mascara.

Removal of this product requires eye makeup remover. The first time that I tried to get it off, I must not have wiped it throughly enough since after I got out of the shower, I realzied that I had mascara running down my cheeks. I have found that I don't need to tug to get this formula off (unlike Smashbox Bionic) but I must clean the eye area really well.

One coat of this mascara will get you a naturally pretty, separated daytime look. Two coatsd of this mascara will get you a naturally full looking set of lashes. But when compared to the volume that I get from other formulas, this isn't enough for my taste. Two coats are about enough volume for when I am going for a natural look in the daytime, not when I am doing anything else which is somewhat disappointing. I own this mascara in the black shade (named Lucifer), this is one fo the deepest and best black shades that I have worked with so far. It is also available in a bright blue shade (named Techno) that I will not be buying anytime soon.

This is nice mascara for someone who wants volumizized lashes that still look natural and is not trying to go for false eye lashes look. I find nothing wrong with this mascara but it doesn't provide the super volume that I look for in mascara, other than that I like the formula and it has many benefits to it. If the formula/brush were tweaked to make it more along the lines of Buxom Lash, I would be in heaven.

photo courtesy of Sephora

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Anne Hathaway at the 2011 Golden Globes

My award for the best hair and makeup at the Golden Globes this year went to Anne Hathaway. I am so used to seeing her with red lip and the neutral lip and and natural eye. The dress wasn't my favorite but hair and makeup won hands down!

photo courtesy of MTV

NARS Spring 2011 Collection

NARS still remains one of my favorite makeup lines even though I haven't purchased as much from them in the past few months as I usually do. This year's spring collection contains a selection of purple hues for eyes and some very unique shades for lips. This promises to be an interesting and very unique collection. The NARS website describes the collection as, "Spring 2011 is the epitome of minimalism, reaching a sensual peak with fresh, forward color. Jeweled earth tones are infused with a metallic finish that lends a subtly sleek finish. Cool compliments of sheer and sparkling lips pair with unexpected accents of parrot green and vivid blue". I am hoping for some new lip shades to come out of this collection.

The latest collection from NARS...

Duo Eye Shadow - Shades to inspire and desire. The same longwearing crease resistant formula as NARS single eye shadow, in uniquely paired color combinations. Worn together or alone, all duo eye shadows can be applied sheer or built up for a more dramatic effect. All powder eye shadows can be used wet or dry.
- Nouveau Monde - metallic silver lilac/rich olive gold
- Bateau Ivre - rich sky blue/deep denim blue

Nail Polish - An exclusive formula with technology designed to improve flexibility, durability, wear and gloss properties. This long-wearing formula provides a tough, durable chip-resistant finish and also had added UV protection to prevent polish discoloration.
- Desperado - antique brass

Soft Touch Shadow Pencil - Soft Touch Shadow Pencils provide easy, portable, long-wearing application. These jumbo-sized pencils have versatile functionality to shade the lid, line, or highlight the eye. Smooth, creamy texture delivers a smooth, velvety feel to the eye and make for easy blending and an ideal base for layering with a powder shade for increased color intensity.
- Hollywoodland - versatile pale gold
- Celebrate - bright parrot green

Limited Edition Lip Gloss - NARS introduces six must-have lip glosses named after signature NARS Blushes. This limited-edition collection includes shades inspired by their eponymous blushes offering distinctly playful pouts in a variety of finishes. Worn alone or over and NARS lip product, these lip glosses are the perfect accessory. Mix and match your favorite shades, or place one in every handbag along with its corresponding blush!
- Angelika - cotton candy with gold particles
- Super Orgasm - peachy pink with gold glitter

Lip Gloss - Serious shine and sexy color in sheer, creamy, and semi-sheer formulas. Extremely wearable and versatile shades, lip gloss may be worn alone or over other lip products for heightened drama.
- Nana - deep black grape

Lipstick - A wide range of captivating shades designed to provide the look and style the color dictates. NARS lipstick is available in three formulas. Fashionable colors available in three textures. Exceedingly longwearing. Nourishing and non-drying, with Vitamin E. Once you start wearing NARS lipstick, you won't want to wear anything else.
- Tzigane - pink brandy (Sheer)

Pure Matte Lipstick - Bright. Bold. Vividly matte. This innovative, matte lipstick has intense, stay-true color so lips look lush and vibrant. An exquisitely blended formula strikes a perfect harmony between optimal color, an ultra-matte finish and hydration. A super-rich, super-pampering, super-sexy lipstick in six sumptuous shades. Pure drama. Glides on effortlessly, without drag or resistance. Defying traditional long-wearing lipsticks, Pure Matte will not dry out lips. Wild Mango Butter's advanced moisturizing properties work to repair lips from dryness and scaling, leaving lips supple and soft.
- Madere - nude pink

As I stated above, this is a very unique collection and I am wondering how certain pieces of it will work together. My favorite item is the Pure Matte Lipstick is Madere, a pink nude that will work well with all of my gold and bronze eye makeup shades. I also like the Duo Eye Shadow in Nouveau Monde, the duo with the dramatic olive and silver shades. The Soft Touch pencil in Hollywoodland will also be a great highlighter with a bunch of my gold shades or will work well on its own with a more dramatic lip color. The shade that grabbed my attention the most is the Lip Gloss in Nana, the black grape shade. With my pale skin, this could be a jaw-dropping beautiful shade or a total disaster. I will have to try this one out at the counter but I am really hoping this one will be a winner...

photo courtesy of NARS

Monday, January 17, 2011

DKNY Be Delicious Juiced

Be Delicious Juiced is the newest version of the traditional Be Delicious fragrance that has debuted this pring. Last year, three new candy-based versions were introduced and none of them struck my fancy. Maybe this year will be better and this fragrance will be one that I will buy this season. Every version of this fragrance so far has been classified in the fruit family and alwasy contains an apple note. My personal favorites of the collection are the original fragrance, the Red version, and the Blossom version. This year's version is considered by Sephora to be a floral fragrance so already this is looking more promising for me.

Sephora states the following concerning this new fragrance, "Be Delicious Juiced is even juicer than one could imagine. It bursts with ripe, unforgettable apples and succulent, watery fruits - from start to finish. Juicy New York apples take center stage, opening the fragrance with a medly of colorful, fresh fruits and a flirty dose of pear blossom. Bold and bright, its vivid floral heart includes notes of muguet flowers and white peony while crushed violet petals add a touch of vibrancy to the mix. At its heart, a sheer wave of cedar and creamy woods is followed by white amber, imparting a lasting, memorable wave of cool refreshment".

The notes of the fragrance: Apple, Pear Blossom, Lily of the Valley, Muguet, White Peony, Violet Petals, Cedar Wood, Creamy Woods, White Amber.

This fragrance reminds me a cross between the original fragrance and the Blossom version that was released in the spring of 2009. The fragrance first opens very much like Be Delicious itself, the apple and the pear are the first notes that I smell. The heart of this fragrance goes more into the Be Delicious Blossom type of fragrance. The apple notes remains strong but now the florals begin to come out. I can smell the White Peony and the Violet the strongest, the fragrance is light overall but still wears about the same as the original. Of the base notes, the only one that I can really detect is the woods, however is it very light and not noticeable until about three or four hours into wearing the fragrance.

This is light fragrance that will work out really well this spring, I have only gotten to try a bit out and I want to get a full bottle of this. I think this fragrance makes up for the three disappointments of last year. This is much more true to the original fragrance than the raspberry and caramel versions that were brought out before. I don't totally object to the caramel version but maybe this one would be a better release for fall instead of spring. This type of fragrance makes me think of spring more than other versions that have been offered. This one is a hit for me!

photo courtesy of Sephora

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Bath and Body Works Island Escape Collection

Another pile of snow has just been dumped all over us and I speak for many people that I know when I say that I am sick of the winter weather and would love to fit in a vacation somewhere. Personally, I attempting to go one a one-way trip to Antiqua but until that happens, I will just continue to be snowbound. This year, Bath and Body Works decided to release a collection that fits with the mood of all of us right now, Island Escape. If they can't buy me a plane ticket, at least they can provide me with a way to turn my shower into a tropical paradise. Three new, limited-edition fragrances have been released this weekend; Bali Mango, Hawaiian Coconut, and Fiji Passionfruit.

The first new fragrance is named Bali Mango. Bath and Body Works states the following for a description of the fragrance. "Our tropical Bali Mango is an exotic getaway of juicy mango, sugar cane, pink passionflower, and luscious nectarine". I have always liked mango based fragrances so I wasn't shocked that I ended up liking this one. This fragrance is very sweet and the mango and sugar can notes are the strongest.

The next of the fragrances is my favorite, the Hawaiian Coconut. "Our creamy Hawaiian Coconut is an island vacation of fresh coconut water, sunkissed citrus, and ocean musk". This fragrance is very sweet also and I love this fragrance. This is a very yummy coconut fragrance and I find it to be one of the best coconut fragrances that Bath and Body works has come out with in the past few years.

The last of the fragrances is the Fiji Passionfruit, which reminds me a lot of their old Tropical Passionfruit fragrance. "Our juicy Fiji Passionfruit is a tropical escape of passionfruit, mandaring orange, apricot nectar, and lime zest". This fragrance just doens't work well with my skin chemistry, I get a lot of the passionfruit and apricot notes and it smells just generically sweet on me. This is the only one that I will be skipping from this release.

The limited edition line is available in the traditional Body Splash, Shower Gel, and Body Lotion. One new product is available in this collection, which is the Creamy Scrub. "Our signature Creamy Body Scrub is the perfect way to cleanse while also revealing smoother, younger looking skin. Gentle enough to use everyday, our special formula has exfoliating sugar crystals combined with Vitamin E and moisturizing Jojoba Oil to leave skin feeling soft, nourished, and completely pampered". I played with this scrub at the sink for a couple minutes and I love this product so much!

I bought a nice little haul from this collection the other day. I got shower gels and lotions from both the Bali Mango and Hawaiian Coconut fragrances and after much deliberation I decided on the coconut fragrance of the body scrub (over the mango). If possible, I will go back and get more lotions and the mango scrub if I need some other items from Bath and Body Works soon.

Even though I can't get on vacation anytime soon, I am looking forward to a vacation in my shower tonight...

photo courtesy of Bath and Body Works

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Cleanse Your Soul Valentine's Day Fragrances

And so we are back to Valentine's Day again! Actually we are just getting started with all the limited edition fragrances and products that hit the stores to celebrate this holiday. I do have to say that I love many of the limited edition fragrances that are released every Valentine's Day. Having a taste for sweet fragrances makes this time of the year a ripe time for all kinds of offerings of new candy-based fragrances. For the first of the new fragrances this year, we are starting with the independant etailer, Cleanse Your Soul. This company is tops for sweet, bakery inspired fragrances and heavy duty moisturizers and scrubs. At the moment, this company is looking at a two to three week turn-around time so the earlier that you order your products, the better your chances to have them by the beginning of the month.

Here are the limited edition Valentine's Day fragrances...

Come Away With Me and Be My Love - Blackberries, Pineapple, Strawberries, and Champagne.

How Do I Love Thee? - Summer strawberries with Vanilla Bean Noel and Marshmellow (the companion scent to Let Me Count the Ways).

Upon A Lilac Sea - Spring Lilacs on a bed of Vanilla Sugar.

Love Never Fails - White Wedding Cake, Yuzu, Blood Oranges, and Lemon Sugar.

Thou Art More Lovely - Pink Sugar, Cherries, Champagne, and Whipped Cream.

Love is My Sin - Rich Dark Chocolate, Almond Cream, and a hint of spices.

Idle Tears - White Chocolate Mousse topped with Strawberry Glace.

Perfumed Sea - Fresh air notes sing when combined with violets and sandalwood.

Beautiful Dreamer - White Nectarine filling sandwiched between sugar cookies.

Weeping of the Rain - The scent for a sad Valentine's Day... Black Vanilla, Blackberries, and Amber.

A Divine Rapture - Red Raspberry and Strawberry laced Marshmellow frosting between layers of White Cake, Red Velvet Cake, and Vanilla Poundcake.

Ah, My Beloved - Madagascar Vanilla, Egyptian Musk, and Vanilla Beans.

Love is Enough - Whispers of spring flowers blended with mountain air notes and fresh linen notes.

Lullaby Love - Sweet lavender vanilla combined with a fresh linen scent. Snuggle up with this scent!

Night Thoughts - The scent of sweet baby roses intermingled with incense and sandalwood.

Endless Blue - Blue Sugar with sparkling soda and a spritz of vanilla.

If Thou Must Love Me - Chocolate covered strawberries, Vanilla wafers, and Marshmellows.

I Carry Your Heart - Pink Sugar blended with a deep Red Wine...very sultry!

Life in a Love - Bouquet of Roses with Red Currants and Cloves.

I love the concept of Weeping of the Rain, it might just be my perfect fragrance to wear on Valentine's Day evening! So I know that that fragrance is a must order but I have a bit of a shopping list on this one. How Do I Love Thee?, Thou Art More Lovely, Love Never Fails, A Divine Rapture, Love is Enough, Lullaby Love, Night Thoughts, and If Thou Must Love Me. I'm not a fan of all these names but I bet these will be some amazing bakery fragrances. I recommend any of the body creams or scrubs from this company and I also think that I will be trying out a perfume or two from this line to see how they wear.

And the picture? I'm trying guys, this is for all of you that love this holiday!

photo courtesy of Google

Friday, January 14, 2011

Freeze 24/7 and GABA Technology

I am always on the lookout for cutting edge skincare and Freeze 24/7 has created a technology that is all their own and one of a kind. When first reading about this product, I flashed back to my Neuroscience class in order to really understand the active ingredients on this skincare and how it functions to reduce the appearance of signs of aging. This company calls their science "Age-Less Technology" and includes it in all the products that they have produced so far. I went to the Freeze 24/7 website to read some more background on this technology and I wanted to share it with everyone since it is a different approach to anti-aging and one that I have tried out and believe in.

"Freeze 24/7 products contain our patent pending Age-Less Technology; one of the most advanced technologies in the skincare market today. This innovative technology is comprised of a complex of unique ingredients which includes GABA. Used alone, GABA will produce no effect in the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. However, used within our unique complex of ingredients, GABA helps to produce a visible reduction in the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles."

"The Claim: Our signature Anti-Wrinkle Cream sounds too good to be true. That's why we commissioned an independent laboratory to conduct clinical trials to demonstrate and measure it's effectiveness. What did they find? 100% of the participants (everybody!) saw a 50-90% reduction of the visible appearance of fine lines and wrinkles within 10 minutes of application."

"Age-Less Technology: Instant Gratification. Freeze 24/7 products incorporate patent-pending Age-Less Technology, which includes the ingredient, GABA (Gamma Aminobutyric Acid). GABA is produced in the body as a natural muscle relaxant, just as melatonin is produced as the body's natural sleep inducing agent. When used in conjunction with other key ingredients found within our proprietary complex, GABA works to help diminish the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles on the facial area quickly, safely, and effectively with no side effects - just results. Freeze 24/7 products are safe and produce no side effects. Freeze 24/7 products do not require a prescription, and are comprised of cosmetically approved ingredients."

GABA is a major part of the neuroscience curriculum and I can speak for the effectiveness of this product based soley on that. GABA inhibits muscle function and contraction, exactly as Botox injections do. This cream relaxes the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles but inhibiting the muscle movement for up to 24 hours. This allows the fine lines and wrinkles to almost melt away. This complex is used in all the Freeze 24/7 products however it is found in the highest concentration in the hero product of this line, the Instant Targeted Wrinkle Treatment.

"Hope might not exist in a jar, but miracles do. This dream cream is for real and delivers a powerful punch against wrinkles. Watch them melt away within in minutes. 50-90% in the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles within minutes of application. Freeze 24/7 Age-Less Technology works to diminish the appearance of forehead creases, droopy brows, crow's feet, furrows, laugh lines, feathered lips, and more. Reduces the appearance of ance scars, stretch marks, rosacea, and enlarged pores."

I was able to try this product out at the counter at Saks, the serum is the only item from the collection that I don't currently own or have owned in the past. This product is for treatment of signs of aging so this isn't a product that I currently need at the moment. However, I was shown that the best way to try this product out and show it to everyone is to put some on your knuckle and watch as the wrinkles uncrease. This is an area of deep wrinkling on your skin so when I saw how it worked on there, I became a believer. I am so impressed with the way this Age-Less Technology works on skin that I am a convert to this company and I recommend everyone go the Saks counter and check this line out.

photo courtesy of Freeze 24/7

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Urban Decay Spring 2010 Collection

The Urban Decay Spring 2010 Collection has just dropped on their website the other day. This is the one of the collections that I have been looking forward to the most since I first began to see the spring collections over the past few weeks. With my insane amount of Urban Decay purchases last year, I can see this collection creating a huge shopping list the next time that I hit up Sephora. This collection appears as though most of the new product are designed around eyes and it seems that there is very little for face, cheeks, or lips. One of the products is a set and the other products are all singles. This spring collection actually marks the 15th anniversary of Urban Decay and one of the product is designed to celelbrate this milestone.

Here we go!

15 - Year Anniversary Set 24/7 Pencil Set - Awww... Remember when we were just a baby? We were so cute. Urban Decay is turning FIFTEEN this year, and to celebrate, we created this gorgeous collectable set of fifteen 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencils, including six all-new shades and a sharpener! The wide range of award-winning, high-quality, waterproof shades are great for women of any age, glide on without tugging, last forever, and produce beautiful, vibrant lines. Our fans cannot live without these pencils! The range of shades includes lush tropical hues, deep metallics, and unusually vibrant neutrals. Favorites like Zero, Bourbon, and Electric sit side-by-side with SIX brand-new shades like Asphyxia, Stray Dog, and the piece de resistance: Perversion - a blacker-than-Zero black. Each pencil is stamped with "UD15". the whole collection (and a sharpener!) comes packaged in a silver foil box printed with our UD15 ticking pattern. Purchased separately, this is worth $264! What a value! The 15 - Year Anniversary Pencil Set is the first of the four limited edition products we will launch in 2011 - be on the lookout for more excitement!
- Asphyxia - pinky iridescent purple (new)
- Corrupt - dark metallic brown with silver sparkle (new)
- Midnight Cowboy - beige with gold sparkle (new)
- Perversion - blackest carbon black (new)
- Stray Dog - shimmery brown taupe (new)
- Uzi - gunmetal grey with gold sparkle (new)
- Baked - bold bronze
- Binge - navy blue
- Bourbon - brown with teeny gold glitter
- Electric - bright aquamarine
- Mildew - deep green
- Ransom - bright iridescent purple
- Rockstar - darkest eggplant
- Stash - dark green/gold
- Zero - zealous black

24/7 Glide-On Shadow Pencil - They're crease-proof, they're waterproof...it's the next generation of 24/7 Pencils! Our Shadow Pencils deliver incredible color payout, but feel lightweight. The new fat shape allows you to cover large areas more quickly. Use the thin tip as eye liner, or the side of the tip as a generous swipe of eye shadow. Luscious drop-dead shades make you feel every inch the creative type, as you blend shimmer, cream, and sparkle finishes. Skip the powder shadow brushes and water - our pencils make it easier than ever to get vibrant eye shadow looks on the go. Experiment with multiple shades together, then blend away for an unbelievable effect that sets and stays put. All shades are paraffin, mineral oil, and paraben-free.
- Barracuda - black with silver sparkle
- Clash - bright turquoise with silver sparkle
- Clinic - emerald green with silver sparkle
- Delinquent - dark purple with bright purple sparkle
- Lit - golden bronze
- Mercury - gunmetal
- Midnight Cowboy - beige with silver sparkle
- Morphine - light purple with pale blue shift
- Narc - mossy green
- Rehab - taupe
- Sin - champagne
- Wasteland - dark brown

24/7 Blending Brush - Introducing our unique blending brush that we designed specifically to make our 24/7 Glide-On Shadow Pencils really sing! It's perfect flex (not too stiff, not too soft) and custom brush shape allow you to blend and feather out glorious shadow pencils, creating totally new effects. It's built using the same vegan materials as our Good Karma brush collection, with super-soft synthetic "hair" made from PET (recycled plastic bottles). This meticulously crafted, professional-quality vegan brush is proven to be more hygenic (and kind!) than animal-hair versions. The added bonus is its modern-looking recycled aluminum handle which makes it the coolest makeup brush on your vanity table.

Lush Lash System - When we overheard a cry in our office of "this s*** really works!", we knew we had to share the secret. Who wouldn't want to boost their lash cache? This double-ended miracle worker holds TWO products that really perform. These are clinical results you can take to the beauty bank. 25% longer and thicker in two weeks, 40% in four weeks, 63% in six weeks. How does this stuff work? The clear gel-like serum accelerates the growth of your lashes with peptides. Use the tiny brush to apply it at your lash line. It penetrates at the root and stimulates keratin to lengthen, thicken, and fortify your lashes. Simply brush it on each night before bed. The conditioning mask applies with a wand and loads your lashes with growth peptides and high potency ingredients like Panthenol and Vitamin E. Your conditioned lashes can now resist loss and breakage from being too dry and brittle. All this adds up to incredible lash magnification! Now if only your Blackberry worked this well...

Supercurl Curling Mascara - Curl makes a lady. Sculpt your lashes with perfectly sexy curves to feel instantly prettier-than-pretty. Our formula boosts curl, separates lashes, and literally crafts each one into an expertly-shaped battable set. Part of the secret lies in our molded and curved new technology wand that shapes lashes AND holds curl effectively throughout the day. Even more impressive are the incredible conditioning ingredients in our formula - packed with glycoprotein for lash thickening, moringa seeds to help with curl definition, and Meadowfoam seed oil and Shea Butter for conditioning and smoothing. Take that. We'd probably love this mascara no matter what the tube looked like... But in the spirit of looking pretty we put it in a stunning mirrored gunmetal tube, embellished with swirling black scrolls. Go on with your pretty self.
- Supercurl - black
Urban Lash Mascara For False Lashes - Our unique false lash formula mascara helps to fuse the imposters with your own. Your fake lashes will look more real. Your real lashes blend in with your falsies. This one-of-a-kind mascara provides a uniform coating of of slick, shiny black gloss. Formulated especially for false lash use, the mascara coats, but does not thicken. We like to start with bare lashes, apply our falsies and then use the small mascara brush to coat both sets at once. The results? One easy application with this formula and you get super sexy eyes! Which are yours? No one will know. Blur the line between reality and fantasy. Our mascara can also be used with lash extensions. Packaged in a lovely slim tube with scrolling art, this mascara will be your new secret weapon.

Afterglow Glide-On Cheek Tint - Finally! Sheer, buildable cheek tints that glide on and feel weightless - (never heavy or greasy like your grandma's cream blush). Our techy-feeling tint applies effortlessly on top of any foundation or bare skin... no pulling or rubbing needed to make it look right. And you'll never get that powdery, cakey look that sometimes comes from powder blush. Our modern, yummy shades include a shameless hot pink, a super-healthy berry, and natural peachy tints, to name a few. The formula is loaded with good-for-you ingredients like Vitamin E, Vitamin C, and Vitamin A, so your skin gets nourished and protected. the color goes on more sheer than it looks in the pan, but since its so buildable, YOU control how much you want to blush. We also love to blend two shades together to mimic a natural flushed effect. Whether you've been a fan of cream blush in the past or not, the shades, the silky formula, and the little foil snake on the top of our compact will definitely make you a believer.
- Bang - bright orange
- Crush - bright pink
- Fetish - rose pink
- Greedy - berry
- Indecent - peach
- Quickie - light pink
- Score - pink-peach with gold shift

As long are you aren't looking for any lip or face products, this is a great collection for you. I'm a bit disappointed that this seems to be an almost eye makeup only collection. The eye makeup choices in this collection are top-notch so I guess that I will survive looking at other companies for new lip glosses this spring. My favorite item of the collection is the 24/7 Anniversary set, I can't wait to get my hands on a Midnight Cowboy and Asyphxia eye liners. I am really looking forward to seeing what other three special items come out this year. At the top of my shopping list is the Cheek Tint in Fetish, the rose pink shade. I am hoping that this one will replace Longo's Swan Lake cream blush that I can't find anymore.

The eye shadow pencils look amazing too. Now I have yet another version of Midnight Cowboy to add to my collection. In addition to that shade, I want to buy the following shades: Barracuda, Lit, Morphine, Rehab, Sin, and Wasteland. The Lush Lash System is also calling my name since I have been too afraid to try Latisse or the other prescription lash boosters since they can deepen light eyes. Mascara-wise, the Supercurl looks like one that I would try but the Urban Lash Mascara will only be bought if I can nail false lash application.

I can already tell that this is going to be a great year for Urban Decay...

photo courtesy of Urban Decay

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Bath and Body Works Valentine's Day Pocketbac Collection

No matter how many cute little Valentine's Day products that come out each year, I still hate this holiday. I am trying to focus on the positive this year and look at how many beauty products I can buy myself instead of my lack of boyfriend. So I guess is it time to look at what products I can treat myself to this year. The first of the Valentine's Day products that has been brought to my attention is the Bath and Body Works Valentine's Day Pocketbac Collection. This consists of five new fragrances in the super-portable Pocketbac collection.

My favorite of the collection is the "I Love Shoes" fragrance which has a very cute shoe graphic on the front of the product, is pink, and is the fragrance Stylish Strawberry. This one is very sweet and reminds me of strawberry shortcake. My second favorite of the collection is the "I Love Bling" fragrance. This one is a clear color and has a rock candy fragrance which smells sweet more than anything else. The last one of the group that I like is the "I Love Cake" product with the cupcake graphic on the front of the bottle. This one smells like vanilla cake and reminds me of the Cupcake Pocketbac collection that I loved at Christmas.

The last two didn't really tickle my fancy. The "I Love You" Pocketbac has the Sweet Pea that I haven't been a fan of the since the beginning of my undergraduate years. This one is covered in lip prints and the gel inside is a red color. The last one from this collection is "I Love Boys" which has a graphic of a boy on that looks exactly like Justin Bieber, killing the whole product for me. The fragrance is Berry Crush which I didn't mind but I just can't seriously carry that Pocketbac.

I may not be a Valentine's Day girl but I can definitely love shoes, diamonds, and cake. I have also been told that a St. Patrick's Day collection is upcoming and we all know how excited I will be about that one!

photo courtesy of Bath and Body Works

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Test Driving...

I am currently trying out a few new products to review very soon!

- Gucci by Gucci
- Ojon Revitalitizing Mask
- Bath and Body Works Need a Margarita? Citrus Scrub
- NARS Smudgeproof Eye Shadow Base
- Bath and Body Works Aromatherapy Vanilla Verbena Body Lotion

I love it when all my items are fresh and new!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Bare Escentuals Buxom Lip Polish

Somehow I have been skipping over these lip glosses in my makeup box for the longest time, I had at least one or two sitting in my traincase since at least the beginning of summer. So it was like Christmas morning when I as digging around and came across two of these (in their original packages yet!). I have been test-driving both shades and I have decided that these rank up in my short list of favorite lip glosses. This lip gloss has a plumping ingredient in it, reminding me more of MAC Plushglass than DuWop Lip Venom.

Sephora states the following about this product, "A pout-perfecting lip polish. Naturally creates the look of fuller, more voluptuous lips. This mineral-infused polish imparts a luminous high shine with no sticky or tacky feeling. A deep infusion of antioxidant Vitamins A and E helps keep lips soft, smooth, and protected, while the tingly and cooling sensation reminds you that your lips are getting an immediate increase in fullness." In clinical trials: 86% of women experience an immediate increase in lip fullness; 75% of women feel that moisture in their lips has increase; and 96% of women were statisfied with the overall appearance in their lips.

This product is available in a range of shades, from subtle to dramatic, with three finishes: original, tint, and diamond. Here are the shades that you have to choose from...

Original Finish (sheer cream gloss)
- Amber - soft shimmering peach
- Betty - crimson red
- Bianca - shimmering golden orange
- Brandi - shimmering deep rose
- Bunny - innocent pink
- Candi - shimmering soft pink
- Dani - berry pink
- Destiny - peach nectar
- Dolly - shimmering muted plum
- Dominique - clear with iridescent microglitter
- Eva - warm rose
- Gabby - plum shimmer
- Ginger - shimmering copper rose
- Isabella - sunlit copper
- Jessica - copper pink
- Kanani - shimmering vibrant pink
- Katie - pale pink
- Krystal - high shine clear
- Lacey - coral poppy
- Lana - black raspberry
- Princess - shimmering pink pearl
- Sandy - pink nude
- Sugar - rose beige
- Trixie - shimmering golden rose

Tint Finish (cream finish with more pigment)
- Cherry - sheer poppy
- Liberty - sheer red glaze
- Margarita - sheer raspberry
- Melonie - sheer fushcia
Diamond Finish (super sparkly finish)
- April - glimmering icy pink
- Celeste - glimmering soft peach
- Charity - glimmering cherry red
- Clair - moonlit mauve
- Sarina - shimmering toffee
- Starr - raspberry ice

The two shades that I purchased are from the original finish collection. I have Dani, which is the berry pink shade and Betty, which is the crimson red shade. The Dani shade is very easy to wear since it just gives my lips a hint of a berry tint and I have paired this shade with many different eye shadow shades. Crimson works the best when it is paired with a golden eye or a black cat eye. The plumping action on these glosses makes my lips full and plump but not over-powering. Instead of burning, this gloss give a hint of mint tingle and fades after several minutes. The plumping effect lasts about two or three hours, usually until the gloss needs to be reapplied.

The last time that I went to Sephora (after trying these glosses out), I sat and stared at the counter and felt like a little girl in a candy store all over again. I could have grabbed a shopping basket and started filling it up right then and there but I decided to try and have some self control. Maybe hold it down to one or two per visit... Most of the ones that I want are from the original formulation, I don't plan to really mess with lip gloss perfection! My shopping list: Brandi, Bunny, Eva, Lana, Sandi, and Sugar. I want to try out the April shade in the Diamond formula and see how it compares to the Baby Sparks Dazzleglass.

Well now I have yet another lip gloss obsession. Since that was EXACTLY was I needed!

photo courtesy of Sephora