Secret Tag Archives

The ULTIMATE WINTER SURVIVAL KIT!

I’ll be the first to jump up and say I love the ‘holiday season’ and by that I mean, I love the holiday season from the comfort of my own home.  Being out in the elements because I have to is one thing-but if I don’t have to, you’ll find me nestled under a throw blanket in front of the Christmas tree.  Since I’m still on my daily grind, with a 9-5 obligation, Olay, Secret, Pantene, and Herbal Essences have a few Winter Essentials to keep me looking my absolute best when I am toe to toe with Jack Frost.  Let me know how you brave the cold and thanks for reading!

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#BeautyUnited #CozyUpBU These are a few of my favorite things-GIVEAWAY!

This giveaway is for Canadian residents!

Tis the season……for a giveaway.  Win your very own holiday beauty box!

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I definitely have a few ‘favorite things’ here-the whitestrips, the facial oil, and a nice red lipstick top off my holiday look!  What about you?

I am going to make this simple-tell me what your holidays are going to be like this year and what products in this photo are your favorite….you can enter on Facebook OR Instagram OR do both.

Easy peasy right? Tis the season!  Good luck! Giveaway ends on December 20th, 2015 and is open to Canadian Residents only!

 

Summer MUST HAVES!

It’s finally, FINALLY here-we’ve waited so long for the warmer temps, the longer daylight hours, the cocktails on a patio or several.

But when summer does eventually roll up, it’s also important to be READY.  By ready, I mean, making sure your skin is glowing, and your locks are flowing.  Check out my summer must haves!

*Please note, some of these products have been received for review, but not all of them.  I also have backups of most of these, so if you see something in a box, it’s a backup.  Yes, it’s THAT good.*

Smooth skin

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hemlines are movin’ on up as are the temperatures.  Don’t get caught with cactus legs or a non-milk mustache.  For you shavers out there, something I LOVE to use on my legs is this Venus snap razor.  It’s compact, gets the job done with 5 blades and can travel (not that I’m going to be shaving in a public bathroom, but hey, in a pinch…..okay, I’ll leave that there).  Pair the snap with this  Olay  Satin Care shaving gel, and you are good to go!

For the face, I use these skin envy strips.  No muss, no fuss and they REALLY work (I did a youtube demo on these, so I know). What’s great about these strips is that they are a natural product and since the strips are prepared already, no messy wax on your fingers!

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Oh, and don’t forget to exfoliate PRIOR to shaving-so important to loosen up all the ingrown hairs and remove dead skin.  My current exfoliation product is this Kohna Coffee foaming sugar scrub from Sweet Pea Soap Company (a local company in Toronto).  I like it because it’s not a harsh exfoliator-AND it foams up like a soap after you rub it in.  Cool!  Bonus that it’s a natural product, made locally, and the business is owned by a woman.  All wins!

As the hemlines move up, don’t forget to keep your jiggles in check….cottage cheese is a great snack but not appetizing on the legs.  To reduce the appearance of celulite, use a caffeine containing cream like this Vichy Cellu Destock Serum Flash.  It’s also got hyaluronic acid and light reflecting pearls so your skin appears smoother and has a firmer texture.  Your other option? Liposuction…..so I’ll take the Vichy, thanks.

 

Soft, flowing locks

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It’s no secret that I color my hair (well I have someone color it that is).  I keep it well protected.  My picks for products include the Vidal Sassoon Color Finity line.  This line was specifically designed to protect color treated hair.  In addition to shampoo and conditioner, there is a hairspray AND a cleansing conditioner (so all you Wen people listen up!).  I love this line and use it religiously to maintain FRESH color!  To finish off my look after shampoo, cleansing and styling, I use the Herbal Essences Shine mist, spritzing lightly around my entire head.  Voila!  Smooth, shiny hair.

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For in-between shampoo days, dry shampoos are a GREAT idea.  Some of my current favorites include the Pantene line (I am so glad they finally came out with dry shampoo), the Herbal Essence sNaked line, and Finesse.  The herbal essences product is PERFECT to put in your purse-I keep mine in my desk drawer at work (and it’s still there, so I can’t show it to you). Great for touch ups during the day.

Treatment-wise, I like to use the liveclean Miracle Nutrition Oil on my ends.  This is a treatment you use BEFORE shampoo, and works wonderfully to keep your hair nourished.   Since I’m blonde and my hair is fine, my ends are prone to splitting.  I find that this keeps that in check.  My tip?  Shake it to activate….it says that on the directions but don’t forget!

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My favorite summer cocktail includes these 2 products from Greg May (Greg May Hair Architects in Toronto).  The recipe goes a little something like this: 1 pump Be Strong Keratin-Infused transforming Serum + 1 pump Smooth Operator Leave-In Conditioner.  Mix well and emulsify in the palm of your hands and apply to hair.  Style as usual.  I find the combination of these 2 products really fights the flyaways and the frizzies. The best part of this cocktail? No calories AND fabulous hair!

 

Glowing skin! 

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Anyone else here a  tanning bed convert?  Unfortunately, I will admit that in the early part of  2007, I was using tanning beds like crazy.  My skin has suffered from it-greatly.  While I am actively working on repairing my sun damage, I STILL crave my summer ‘glow.’  How do I achieve it?  Honestly, I love going to Me & T studio in Toronto to have a custom airbrush tan (that post is coming up).  If I can’t make it to the studio, I use Hawaiian Tropic Island Radiance Creme Self Tanner. This is a spray lotion that applies easily to skin with minimal streaking.  My tip about streaking? If you’re concerned or worried, mix the Tropic Island Glow into your lotion and apply. The only down side to self tanning at home is that there is some drying time involved.  I just use that time to walk around and do housework.  A clean house and faux glow? YES PLEASE! Ladies and gents if you are fair skinned like I am, please consider applying self tanner before wearing shorts/skirts.  It does wonders for the appearance of your legs, they look thinner and firmer and it won’t blind everyone else in close proximity. I have my University roommate to thank for pointing this out to me one summery day many years ago. 

glowing skin is one thing but what about protection from the sun? The sun’s rays ARE damaging, we know this, it’s been proven.  Applying sunscreen? Not my favorite thing but there are several products that I like and all sorts of new technology available to suit your every SPF related need.

For my face, I have been LOVE-LOVE-LOVE-ing this L’Oreal Paris BB sunscreen. It has a touch of tint, the right amount of glow and SPF 50.  Lately, I’ve been wearing it on its own.

For the rest of me, there are 3 products that really stand out to me and surprisingly, NONE are lotions!  The Vichy Capital Soleil SPF 30 is an Invisible, alcohol free mist that is dry upon application.  I love it because it is SO SO light and the scent is amazing.  It also has a cooling effect on the skin.  I just read that it’s formulated for people with active lifestyles, possibly indicating that it’s sweatproof.  I know Vichy products can be a bit pricey, but this is your skin we’re talking about here.  You know, the largest organ you have?  Make the investment.

L’Oreal Paris has a fantastic Sublime Sun sunscreen line of products that include lotions, sprays, a mousse and an alcohol free spray! The Silky Sheer SPF 30 Mousse is one of my *new* favorites.  Incredibly light, broad spectrum protection with Vitamin E.  And a light summer scent.  I’m also enjoying the Invisible protect Dry Oil Spray, also containing Vitamin E.  The oil is water resistant so if you are a swimmer, you may want to check it out.

Keep in mind, dear readers, you need a full shot glass of sunscreen to protect your body.  What you put in that shot glass afterwards is up to you of course 😉

And what about the face?

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Well after sunscreen, good skin care is important….especially in the summer.  I’ve been loving the Olay FreshEffects Out of this Swirled deep pore clean & exfoliating scrub.  I use this 3 times a week to clear my pores of pollution, dirt and debris (one of the downers about working in the city-skin is exposed to so many ickies).   At night, I also use the tea tree toner from Sweet Pea Soap Company.  It makes sure my pores are spotless AND doesn’t leave my skin tight or itchy-again, a completely natural product!

the under-eye area is of concern to me now that I’ve moved into my 40th year on this planet (more than half way through it too-whoah).  2 products that I’m a big fan of (so much so that I have BACK-UPS) are from Olay total effects.  The eye brightening CC cream is a daily treatment that provides coverage and correction to the eye area.  I like it because it feels cool when it’s applied and has a slight tint.  I don’t have time to mess around with concealer in the summer and find that all of my concealers are way too light for me!  I pat this on, blend it in lightly and I’m set.  I also have a crush on the dark circle minimizing CC cream (in a brush applicator).  This is the product that comes in my purse with me and hides my lack of sleep days.  It’s portable and no fingers required for application!! What I truly love about these 2 products is how light they are and how much coverage they provide.

Since my skin is oily, touch ups aren’t an option for me, they are mandatory.  I enjoy having wet cloths around (in my desk and in my purse).  The Olay total effects 7 wet cloths remove makeup but don’t strip the skin dry. They are just handy to have around….especially after my lunch hour yoga class. I didn’t know it was possible to sweat that much in yoga…..phew!

Speaking of sweating…..we all do it AND it’s a good sign that you’re properly hydrated  (but don’t forget to drink LOTS of water especially if you’re in the sun frequently).  However, the odor…..it’s like the elephant in the room.  Instead of trying to act cool (with your arms glued to your side), how about you just BE cool and use this Secret Outlast antiperspirant.  This product goes the extra mile to keep you cool, calm and collected.

Finishing touches.

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I tend to keep it light in the summer…..very rarely will I wear foundation unless I’m heading off to an event, wedding, party, date.  Right now, I’m using the Olay total effects CC tone correcting moisturizer with sunscreen. If I feel the need, I’ll layer it over the L’Oreal Silky Sheer BB cream.  This product evens out skin tone, provides light coverage and contains a broad spectrum sunscreen.

One more product that needs a HUGE mention.  Marcelle CC cream.  Yes.  I actually use this year round and adore it….I mean adore it.  It has 24k gold in it, and that’s a good reason to love it but I like it because it just blends SO well into my skin.  I have even cracked the lid.  I will buy this again and again….Marcelle was one of the first Canadian companies to make a BB, CC, AND DD cream by the way.  I like the BB and the DD but my heart is with the CC.

Makeup is kept quite light too.  This Covergirl Cheekers blush in  180 brick rose complements my summer face beautifully and doesn’t require a lot of product.   I like to make a statement so Covergirl lipstick in 325 Spellbound gives me that pop I need on my lips (a feature I tend to emphasize).  Finally, if you’re feeling frisky (or you’re me), take things up a notch with the Covergirl shadow pot in 305.  I pop this in the corner and blend slightly into the crease….it’s part business and part PARTY!!!

Fragrance you say? 

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I have my favorites…..one of my recents is Yardley English Lavender.  I still can’t believe how great this smells and was ready to write up a scathing review of it but it’s just SO beautiful.  Another favorite of mine would be Theirry Mugler Alien Aqua Chic.  It’s his Alien fragrance but lighter….good for the office, especially mine-so many scent sensitive folks around these days.

And there you have it-my summer favorites. Does this all go on my face and body simultaneously? NO, of course not but this is my summer repetoire. I have been trying to use reasonably priced products as I’m finding that the technology and quality of drugstore brands has improved a LOT!

What are your summer favorites and would you try any of the products I’ve listed above?   Let me know in the comments below!

Thanks for reading…..I truly appreciate all of you who take the time to read my posts and comment.