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How to avoid winter dullness.

9 Dec

Welp. We have about four more months of old man winter, four more months of darkness beginning at like 2pm (or so it feels like), etc. The cold and early sunsets reak havoc on our complexions, rendering us pale, sallow and sometimes flaky.

Here is what I do to preserve my sexy. Of course it starts with skin care.

I wash my face with Ole Henriksen’s African Red Tea foaming cleanser. It soothes and does not over dry- I have oily skin, but still ensure my face is not zapped of all moisture. Next I apply Fresh’s soy face serum, it restores moisture and keeps it hydrated.For day time I use Ole’s truth serum, packed with 10% vitamin C- it brightens and gives radiance like no other. Next I follow up with Ole’s Truth revealed day moisturizer, which also contains vitamin C. Lately, at night, I use Kinerase’s night time moisturizer, it is extremely rich (I could never use a very rich cream in the day time) to keep my face supple, the heat can be the devil.

Every so often I exfoliate with Fresh’s soy face exfoliant, it gets the job done, without being to harsh.

Here are the above mentioned products, click for more details.


As far as make up goes, I don’t think that because it is winter you have to be chained to dark colors. Apply a little of bronzer to warm your skin up. Pick either your lips or cheeks to add a pop of unexpected color.

Here are some recommendations


Product Rave: Mario Badescu drying cream

19 Oct

This doggone Mario Badescu Drying Cream has been the answer to my puberty aged like break outs! I’m a woman of a certain age and have no clue why I must be subjected to  pimples! At any rate, I purchased this back when it was on sale on Hautelook. I thought if I hated it, its not like it was a huge investment. Welp, I love it! I remove all make up, wash my face and pat dry with a towel. I follow with my moisturizer and then take a q-tip and apply where ever I have a blemish. Seriously within a period of 24 hours it is significantly reduced. By day two, almost completely gone. And the price? $14 at regular price, you can’t beat it. Besides, it will take you MONTHS to actually even get half way through this container. Definitely recession proof. The only draw back is perhaps the smell. It does have a lingering sulfur smell, which doesn’t bother me at all, but may annoy some.

Many people know Mario for his Mario Badescu Drying Lotion , which is also very effective. I have used it several times in the past, but the last bottle my cat played soccer with it and I ended up cleaning the broken glass off he floor.

What Mario says:

Conceal and heal pimples day or night with our blend-able, invisible, soothing acne treatment designed for bumpy under-skin acne or for on-the-spot, quick drying of open, erupted zits. Super-concentrated formula. A little goes a long, long way. Great to use as a barrier between your blemish and your makeup.How to use: Apply sparingly on pimples by dabbing with fingertip until cream blends into the skin. Best when applied after moisturizer, before makeup.


I personally only wear it at night. I can’t comment on how it would work in the day. It does claim to conceal, but I’d say not on this brown girl.Unless I am going for the whole beetle juice look. 🙂


What would Carm buy…recommendations for Sephora friends and family

7 Oct

The tell tale sign that holiday is nipping at our heels, is the Sephora’s once yearly Friends and Family sale…. The discount is the same that it always is, 20% off the total store, no exclusions. The discount will be available on, to shop in the store you must have a special pass from an employee, It is October 21st- November 3rd.

So, what would I buy with the discount? I am going to include some things I already use or have in the past for skin care. Also some make up items that may strike your fancy. This sale is always tough because I’d rather be shopping solely for myself. I mean my mom and sisters don’t really need anything, do they?

Let’s start with skin care. This is a combination of things you can use to mix and match to complete a solid regimen. Kiss those wrinkles, acne, and dark spots good bye.

Basic skin care

Acne prone/ oily skin

Anti aging



Stay tuned for make up recs this weekend!

Skyn Iceland on Hautelook! Check My Recs!

7 Oct

Sorry I am tardy for the Hautelook party today. As you know Hautelook has sales daily and you can get some sweet deals on cult favorites and things you may have always wanted to try. Skyn Iceland is one of those brands today. Skyn is a natural line, formulated for all skin types, but is an excellent pick for those who often have distressed skin and other sensitivities. Being the guinea pig that I am I have actually tried a few items from their line. Their eye cream helps with puffiness, fine lines and wrinkles, and dark circles. I blogged about their wipes earlier this year. The cleanser is also something that could be a mainstay on your vanity.

Hautelook is my invite only, click here to join.

Below are my recommendations, click for more information.



The prices over at Hautelook are about 30-40% off. Run on over there!

Product Rave: Clinique All About Eyes serum.

6 Oct

I think Clinique all about eyes was the first eye cream that I ever purchased.In my early twenties it worked to hydrate, and slightly reduced my dark circles and puffiness (both hereditary- thanks Dad) . It served its purpose backed then. Since I’m a woman of a certain age, lol, I need an eye cream that has more potent anti-aging ingredients at this point. However, more and more I am waking up like droopy. Enter Clinique ‘All About Eyes Serum’ De-Puffing Eye Massage roller ball. I store it in my refrigerator. After cleansing my face I grab this and swipe it under my eyes. Instant depuffing. Then I follow with my moisturizer. I save my heavy duty eye cream for night use.

What Clinique says

This instantly cooling serum helps massage away bags, refreshes and hydrates puffy eyes on contact. Brightens eye area immediately and over time. Combats dark circles, too. With caffeine, potent antioxidants and soothing botanicals.How to use: Layer under or over any All About Eyes formula, or with our other eye treatments or makeup. Using gentle pressure, roll under each eye from inner corner to outer corner twice. Apply morning, night and as needed throughout the day.

Since Sephora friends and family starts October 21st, go ahead and add this to your list. Even if you may not be puffy, it could remedy those long nights of you being a dancin’ machine. Stayed tuned, I will be posting other recommendations thoughout the next couple of weeks.


Review: Lush Lovely Jubblies

30 Sep

Welp……..according to Lush , Lovely Jubblies Breast Cream will do just that. A couple a months ago, Krissy, blogged about a new product that Lush has inttroduced… It sounded interesting enough, so while I was near the Lush in midtown I decided to snap one up. I gave this plenty of time to make it do what it do.


What Lush says:

Introducing our brilliant breast cream, packed full of tightening meadowsweet infusion and firming tiger lily petals to help your girls fight the forces of gravity. We add heaps of beeswax and organic oils like almond and avocado to soften your melons (and to make it even harder to keep the boys at bay!) We think everyone deserves a pair of lovely jubblies. Irresistible, Floral Fragrance Smooth a generous amount of Lovely Jubblies over your décolletage area to tone down the wiggle and leave your cleavage smelling like a fresh floral bouquet of orange blossom, rose, jasmine and ylang ylang. Tiger Lily Petals Tiger lilies have astringent properties and are traditionally used to tighten the skin, making them perfect for firming up wobbly bits.


So lets just cut to the chase…I really loved the smell of this. and yes, it hydrated.I used it on my bird chest lol, my fat arms, and decollette. I noticed a tiny bit a firming. But I would attribute it to how well the ingredients hydrate. As I have stated in different skin care posts, dry skin (any where on the body) will show signs of aging and loss of elasticity first. Did I notice drastic firming and lifting? Will I forego plastic surgery after I have kittens? Probably not. But its a nice idea. I won’t repurchase (unless some type of discount) as the $24 could be used on all the snacks I inhale on the daily. What I will say is make sure you give every body part attention. After you shower massage breast area, face and neck, UPWARDS. Lets try and keep gravity at bay.

Ole Henriksen.Truth To Go.

27 Sep

There must be 2661398 different facial wipes floating around there. I have tried a few of them. In general, I opt for a facial cleanser to take care of removing my make up, and clearing my daily woes. Until this Ole Henriksen Truth To Go Wipes. Seriously, after using these on my eyes, and every where else on my face I feel like I washed my face and moisturized it.They also came in handy here. Now don’t quote me, I am not saying use this in lieu of a good old fashioned cleanse at the sink, but it will do when you are in a pinch. I have even used this to get off water proof make make up, before I jump in the shower. I love them long time. The wipes are a part of Ole’s truth line. Many people may recognize the name from his infamous Ole Henriksen Truth Serum Collagen Booster 30ml , a 10 % vitamin C potion, that boosts collagen and brightens like no other.

What it is: A travel-friendly pack of gentle cleansing wipes that provide moisturizing and age defying properties. What it is formulated to do: These luxurious cleansing wipes gently remove dirt, grime, and makeup while essential fatty acids nourish the skin. Its mild, naturally based cleansing ingredients remove even the most stubborn eye makeup. Vitamin C and micro algae help to brighten, firm, and smooth the texture of skin. With the truth collection’s signature citrus vanilla scent, each cloth is a refreshing pick me up. What it is formulated WITHOUT:

  • Parabens
  • Sulfates
  • Synthetic Dyes
  • Petrochemicals
  • Phthalates
  • GMOs
  • Triclosan


I also like that the lid snaps shut…..others that don’t I have found that don’t properly close, just dry out. I personally don’t have money to burn.

Here is a glimpse of the goodies that are included in the wipes.

Note that if you are looking to stay away from parabens…this is paraben free! The ingredients alone should have you running to snap up a pack.

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My rx for distressed skin.

16 Sep

Over the past two weeks I think my skin was revolting. I have had eczema since birth, yet recently it decided to stalk my life and drive me insane. I was so itchy. My face? HOT MESS. Nothing really in the way of  breakouts, but crazy irritation. Itchy eyelids, and certain places on my face were extremely DRY. My face is usually really oily, so I knew there was trouble.

I don’t really remember a change in my diet nor switching my skincare to something I’d never tried. What I did do immediately is refrain from the use of retinols, glycolic acid, and anything thing else that exfoliates. Not sure if any of these caused the irritation, but I wasn’t taking any chances until my skin was back to normal.I also stopped using my spf 50, sometimes the ingredients of that make up sun protection can cause the skin to react, so I used a 25. I also didn’t pile as much as eye shadow on, if at all, until my eyes weren’t itchy and flaky. I only wore foundation when I was act events during NYFW, since I was on vacation, anything outside of that I was bare face. To remove my make up I used  Ole Henriksen Truth To Go Wipes, they aren’t stripping, and actually sooth.To date I am not completely sure what caused my skin to act a fool, but I remedied it by doing the following.

I washed it am and pm using Cetaphil Gentle Cleansing Bar. After patting it dry I used Cetaphil Moisturizing Lotion for sensitive skin. On my eye lids (at bed time) I used a tiny bit of  Windmill Super E 100% Vitamin E Oil 28 000 IU Liquid. It aided in healing, they were raw from scratching-YUCK! Vitamin E is awesome. Thats it! None of the serums, lotions or potions that I normally would apply were touched. Sometimes, you have to get back back to basics. It could have very well been hormonal or stress that caused my skin to freak out.

For the rest of my body I applied Eucerin Calming Daily Moisturizer Creme all over. Then applied a tiny amount of hydrocortisone  the extremely itchy areas. I don’t recommend using hydrocortisone on the face, unless you have been directed to, or if it is specifically for the face. Hydrocortisones contain steroids, and over time they thin the skin, although it would take a long time to do that, I wouldn’t suggest risking it on your mug.

Here are some common products you can keep on hand if you have sensitive skin, or if your skin hates you one day (like mine did).



Nude Cleansing Oil.THE replacement for Shu Uemura.

2 Sep

I took it upon myself to figure out what you ladies could use in lieu of the Shu cleansing oil. Thank me later, k? I have been using the Shu cleanser for quite some time, and it does the job of removing make up, and all the grime I encounter throughout the day. However, as we all know, Shu has decided to only retail hair care products in the United States now (I have found the brand still available on the web).Which leaves us cult users of the shu uemura Eyelash Curler , Ultimate Expression Mascara and cleansing oil  with our backs against the wall, lol.

I stumbled upon quite some time ago, Nude Skincare Cleansing Facial Oil 3.4 oz . And I must say it measures up to Shu and then some. The Nude cleanser also removes make up, and leaves the skin feeling hydrated. It is also formulated with Omega 3s and other essential fatty acids that are imperative to your skin’s health, and overall appearance.Nude Skincare also includes probiotics, yes ,you heard of it in your favorite yogurt. Well it works the same for your skin; purging toxins, and things your skin could do without. The price is also right, in my opinion too. A 3.4oz bottle is $36. I paid about  $55 for my shu uemura High Performance Balancing Cleansing Oil Fresh , which was 5 oz.

Remnants of what was once ……….and the replacement


*Sidebar* If you are looking for a lash curler equivalent to the Shu curler, look no further than ,Tarte Cosmetics Picture Perfect Eyelash Curler I have used interchangeably with my Shu for the past two years, and its just as good. In fact, the pad is silicone, versus rubber. You lose less lashes when using a curler with silicone pads.

Make up optional skin.101

12 Aug

Yes. Clutch your pearls. I AM going to discuss tips to skin that looks great without make up. Why? Well I don’t want you missing UPS deliveries because you couldn’t get your rouge on in enough time. Also, foundation, concealer, etc covers color, not TEXTURE.

First. Great skin starts with having a slate. Invest in a great cleanser. NEVER ever ever sleep with make up on. You’ll regret it.I recommend something like Aveeno positively radiant, or Fresh’s Soy Face cleanser. The Soy Face cleanser is great because it cleanses and tones. I don’t necessarily swear by using a toner, but toner does restore PH balance thats some cleansers rob you of.

Moisturize. In the day time an SPF of at least 30 is a non-negotiable.Sun is the single biggest cause of collagen break down.And years of sun exposure causes hyperpigmentation. Some of which is not reversable. Also after cleansing at time use a cream that will really hydrate. Unfortunately dry skin shows signs of aging faster than other skin types.You can slow the hands of time by staying moisturized.I always spend more on my night time skin care, as that is wehn your body normally goes through repair anyhow. 

 Treat. Here is when you address whatever you concerns are. For many hyperpigmentation is pretty high on the list. For woman of color, such as myself, If so much as get a tiny pimple, it leaves a mark. No bueno. You can use products with hydroquinone to effectively lighten.Only use at night, as this ingredient makes you sun sensitive. There are alternatives to this ingredient, products such as Caudalie Vinoperfect (used for 2 years and I LOVE it) and Clinique even better come to mind. I

If fine lines, wrinkle and elasticity are a pressing issue, look for products that aim to repair and prevent. Serums sych as Caudalie Vinexpert are good, and Bliss Youth as we know it.Peptides and retinoids are magic ingredients

Another hot button is acne. Yes. I am doggone near 30 and still experience occassional break outs. Try products that include salycilic acid. I favor benzoyl peroxide, for me its a bit more aggressive than other acne fighting ingredients. I don’t have time to horse around.

Other factors that affect your skin; diet and lifestyle. I won’t sit and give you advice on diet. I’m not an expert as much as my weight goes up and down. I do try and stay away from fast food, but as of late, welp. ANYWAY make sure you eat the daily recommended amounts of fruits and veggies. STAY away from cigarettes (nasty habit). I also take flax seed oil capsules, and a multi from Phyto. I recently started taking cod liver oil.Beverly Johnson and MoptopMaven both highly recommend. I will report my findings as soon as I have taken it long enough.

Here are some of my recs for great skin care. Admittedly I have tried all of these at some me your resident Guinea Pig.

 I’m not a dermatologist but feel free to ask me any questions.