Monday, October 19, 2009


After a hiatus, I'll be blogging again by this weekend! I went abroad, got ill at the end of my trip, and my laptop bit the dust. But look for new posts on Saturday! I'll have reviews, holiday gift ideas, and promo pics.

A little tidbit until my next post: check out Essie's new Winter 2009 collection: Sweet Time of Year. It's candy themed and contains a new mint green color, somewhat similar to Chanel's Jade nail polish. It's $8 instead of $25 (and most likely not out of stock!). According to several bloggers, the collection will be available in November.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

I am in France, hence the lack of updates! As soon as I get done traveling from Lyon to Paris, I'll do some more reviews and write ups about French cosmetics, skin care, perfume, etc! Au revoir!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Review: Batiste Dry Shampoo

Need a quick fix for limp, oily hair in the morning with no time to shampoo? Just want to freshen up between washings? Then a dry shampoo is your best choice. I think we all know it's best to give our hair a break from shampooings but greasy hair is never very appealing.

I've done the baby powder trick, which takes care of any oiliness, but does little to add volume. I prefer spray dry shampoos because you can work it through your hair to clean up and add lift. My favorite dry shampoo is Batiste! It's a good price, at approx $9.95, and lasts for a long time. There are three different scents: original (citrus-y), blush (floral), and tropical (as it sounds-my favorite). These are incredibly convenient for travel or anytime you've overslept.

To use a spray dry shampoo, shake the can and angle the spray nozzle at your roots from about a foot away. Work through the roots and back of your hair after letting the product settle. Be sure to brush thoroughly especially if you have dark hair. I also use a hair dryer after brushing for extra volume because my hair gets very flat on the second day.

It's that simple. I highly recommend this product to everyone especially those with fine, oily hair!

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Pros: Convenient, Easy to Use, Smells Great

Cons: Not sure how Eco-friendly this spray is!

Price: approx $9.95 (thought it can be found on the web for as little as $5.88)

Size: 5.05 oz

Sunday, July 5, 2009

How To: Save Money on Makeup! (And Still Have Fun)

Don't let a tighter budget rain on your beauty parade! Here are some easy ways to save dollars and get the most out of your purchases while shopping for beauty products:

1. Think Multipurpose

The best products are ones you can use for a variety of applications and looks. This rule goes for a lot of things in life-- you'll get more use out of a blender than a Margarita Machine (thanks, Mom). Look for cream blushes or blush sticks you can use as lip colors too. Or pick a highlight shade/shimmer brick that can double as eyeshadow. Speaking of eye shadows, try applying your favorite shade wet with a thin brush as eyeliner! Or put that foundation that was a too light to use by applying it like a concealer under the eyes. Find a face mask that can serve as an acne spot treatment. Utilize palettes of complementary colors instead of purchasing several products separately. The list goes on! Multipurpose products save you money and effort. They are also perfect for travel!

2. Staples First

Invest in good everyday products like foundation, concealer, mascara, and brushes. By invest, I don't mean that you have to spend a lot of money but make these items your priority when shopping. If you have to choose between buying a foundation that matches your skin tone perfectly or a beautiful smokey eyeshadow, go for the foundation. You'll use it everyday and it will serve its purpose of creating a beautiful canvas for the rest of your products. Skip the trendy vibrating mascara and pick up the formula that makes you lashes look long, full, and natural.

3. Know the Return Policy

If you don't like a product, you should by all means return it! But first, know the policy. Most department stores will accept a used product within a certain amount of days after purchase. So don't let that blush (or what have you) you're unhappy with sit there. Take it back before time wastes. And always save your boxes and receipts! Know that many drugstores have tighter return policies (see number 4 on my list), so you'll have to be a bit more sure of your choices.

4. Review, Research & Ask Questions

When you can, check out reviews of items you're looking at on You'll see the comments and opinions of others who have tried the product already. You can filter these reviews by age, skin tone, and skin type. Furthermore, each product is individually reviewed for its price and packaging as well as its overall performance. Write reviews yourself to help others! Look for "top reviewers" (denoted on their MUA profiles or by individual reviews) to find people who review often and accurately.

Check out the web for a comparison of prices for your desired product. You may be available to find a cheaper price or alternative on,, or Just be careful to purchase products that are hygienic and legitimate (fake MAC products are all over ebay!). Look at TJ Maxx and Marshall's for discount beauty products. I've found Lancome, Hard Candy, Sugar, Stila, and the Balm at these stores for cheap!

Don't be afraid to ask a makeup artist at the beauty counter for advice. Sometimes sales people can be pushy but their job is to help you. Don't feel like you must buy a certain product if you're not happy for the look he or she is suggesting. Makeup artists often know the products very well and making friends with one is always a good thing! Building up a relationship with the artists working at MAC has introduced to beautiful products I would have never chosen myself. Likewise, ask family and friends what they think. You're not tied down to their opinions but an outside perspective is always helpful.

5. Be Cautious with Collections

Here's a rule I need to follow better myself! Beauty collections are tons of fun and limited edition products are so tempting! But collections often mean lots of show and expense. I definitely recommend checking out limited editions collections every now and then but don't get too wrapped up and feeling like you HAVE to buy from every one. Trust me, there will be another similar product and colors do get released again (cough MAC cough)! Sometimes, it's worth buying a few backups of a product you just LOVE and won't be re-released (Estee Lauder's Azuree Soleil..I'm looking at you!) but most of the time, I'd skip and save your money for something else.

6. Get Inspired

If you're in a beauty rut, a new bright lipstick can help but more often than not, you just need a little inspiration! Flip through fashion and beauty magazines from the 40s, 60s, 80s, watch an old Hollywood film, browse tutorials on YouTube, or photograph beautiful things around you! Fresh colors and textures could be the catalyst for a whole new look. Check out the artist's color wheel for different but complementary colors. Read beauty books by Bobbi Brown or Kevyn Aucoin for step by step instructions of makeup application. You'll find new ways to use old favorites in your collection!

I hope that helps everyone. Do you have any money saving tips? What your favorite inexpensive product? Mine has to be Ecotools brushes...they are wonderful for the price and good for the environment!

Thanks for reading!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

What I'm Loving Right Now

My Favorite Purchases of Recent:

1. Baby Pink Tunic from Gap

I must admit this top probably looks quite drab in the photograph but in person and off the hanger, I absolutely love it! I'm 5'11 so tops are frequently way too short on me and I prefer long shirts that skim the hips. This top is billowy and slimming without being shapeless. It ties at the sides and makes me feel ballerina-ish! I've paired it with black skinny jeans from Old Navy and sequined flats by Penny Loves Kenny.

2. MAC Eye shadows in All That Glitters and Haux

(L: All That Glitters; R: Haux)

I asked the makeup artist at MAC to help me find a pair of eye shadows for day time looks. I have to admit I was skeptical of Haux when she first pulled it out. It's not a color I would have picked out but clearly, she knew better! All That Glitters is a gorgeous bronze peach with shimmer that I sweep on the lid with Haux, a matte light brown, in the crease for defintion. These are new everyday staples for me! You can add more Haux in the crease and line with an eggplant color for a more dramatic evening look.

3. Sally Hansen Extreme Wear Nail Polish in Rockstar Pink

This polish has pink, purple, and blue glitter in a clear base. It's definitely a polish I wear over another color, such as a pink or deep purple. It's really fun and I could see myself wearing this on New Year's! Glitter polishes are awful to remove so use a strong polish remover and felt.

What are your favorite purchases of late? Have you tried any of the above items? Let me know! Thanks for reading!

July Beauty Wants!

I've been getting ready for my month long trip to France (yes!) that I haven't been able to update this blog much in the past week. I thought I'd post some things I've been "lemming" lately for fun. Of course, I'm saving most of my money for France....who knows what I will find!

1. MAC Lipstick in Creme d'Nude

Gotta love MAC Lipsticks. They are gorgeous and affordable! I have a hard time finding nude lipsticks that aren't too pale or orange-y. Creme de Nude looks perfect!

2. OPI Mod About You

Sometimes my obsession with colorful nails makes me go all the way to the opposite end of the spectrum. Pale nails can be gorgeous with an opaque finish and Mod About You looks like no expection. It's not a new OPI color but a beauty supply store near me carries it. Such a pretty baby pink color!

3. Benefit Blush in Coralista

I think even cool skin tones look good in a beautiful warm apricot blush! There's something so summery about a peachy pink blush. Benefit makes lovely blushes and Coralista comes with pretty packaging and a nice size brush. What more could you want?

4. Benefit Creaseless Cream Shadow in R.S.V.P.

I have a Creaseless Cream Shadow in Marry Up (a bronzey copper) and it's perfect alone or used as a base/liner. R.S.V.P. is a champagne color that I think would be perfect for a bright eyed look.

5. MAC Eyeshadow in Satin Taupe

Oh, MAC, what you do to my wallet! Taupe is a very hard color to describe but I typically think of it as a grayish brown. However, often times you'll see purple-y gray shadows called taupes too! It's very confusing. No matter, Satin Taupe looks perfect for a daytime crease color or for a unique evening smokey eye.

So, that's my list for now! I'm planning on doing some serious shopping at the Monoprixs and department stores in France but if there happens to be some good duty free beauty shopping at the airports...well, no one's stopping me! :)

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

How To: Brush Holder!

Many of you have probably seen the Sephora inspired makeup brush holders on websites and beauty blogs. They are so simple to make and great for storing brushes in an attractive and practical way! I used to store my makeup in a brush roll, which is great for travel by the way, but found the roll got dirty quickly. So, check out my take on the Sephora inspired makeup brush holder.

Isn't it cute if I do say so myself? It was easy and quick to make and very cheap!

What I Used:

-Glass Vase from Michael's Craft Store (approx. $5.00)
-Flat Marbles (often found in floral/candle section of craft stores) in peachy pink colors (approx. $4.50)
-A thin Pink Ribbon & tape (approx. $1.00)
-Scrapbooking 3-D Butterfly Stickers (approx. $2.50)

Total Cost: around $13.00

The best thing about this craft is how customizable it is! Alternatively, you can change up the ribbon, beads, and stickers to create a completely different look. Or try painting the glass with appropriate paint. Others have used plastic containers and paint pens for an easy way to add a personal touch and design.

Some websites (including sell premade brush holders but I recommend making your own. You'll save money on the overall cost and of course, shipping and be able to personalize the holder to your own style.

Let me know what you think! I've been reaching for brushes that I'd previously forgotten about now that they're on display. What is your brush storage system?

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Review: Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Foundation

I'll be doing several reviews over the next few days. I've got some new favorite staples and a few fun things to talk about so be sure to return to my blog frequently to keep up!

I thought I'd review my favorite foundation, Lancome's Teint Idole Ultra. Teint Idole Ultra is a liquid oil-free foundation that comes in a glass pump tube. I have been using this foundation for the past five years. It's a staple in my everyday makeup look. I have oily acne-prone skin. My skin can be very sensitive to products. I use Retin-A so I have to be careful what sort of products I put on my face.

With Teint Idole Ultra, I do not use a primer. Instead I use Coppertone Oil Free Faces Lotion in SPF 30. I don't think you need a primer with this foundation unless your skin is dry and/or you want to fill in lines and wrinkles first. It is a personal preference. After using sunscreen, I either apply the foundation with clean fingers or the Sonia Kashuk skunk brush. The best thing about this foundation is it's ability to blend and the amount of coverage. I would describe the coverage as medium; you can build up to a full coverage look with more layers. Personally, I prefer medium coverage because you can hide imperfections but forego the "pancake" look. You can easily cover blemishes, marks, and lights scars with this foundation. I can even skip concealer under my eyes if I'm in a hurry. It does not cover acne scars fully. You will need a concealer for that and I recommend Laura Mercier's Secret Camouflage.

The foundation is easy to apply and a little goes a long way! The finish is some what matte. Teinte Idole is not a foundation that will give you a "dewy" or "glowy" look. Instead, it deemphasizes pores with a shine free finish. I find that using this foundation plus a good concealer you can achieve an airbrushed look! If you want a more glowy look, try pairing this foundation with a shimmery blush or highlight shade.

And yes, this foundation does wear well! I do not know if it lasts 14 hours since I've never worn it that long but it does last at least 8 hours without touch up. It doesn't even sweat off when I'm at the gym. I have never experienced any break outs from the foundation. That's why I've been coming back to it for five years!

This foundation is expensive, priced at approximately $40.00. I know this is a lot to spend on a foundation but the good news is Teint Idole performs amazing well and lasts quite a while. A bottle usually gets me through four months and I wear makeup almost every day. Since you don't need to touch up, you won't be using as much makeup. If you are worried about cost, try mixing this foundation with your favorite drug store foundation to save money (learned this trick from the lovely Panacea81)!

Lancome's Teint Idole Ultra comes in eighteen shades. I wear Ivoire 2C and it's the perfect match for my skin tone. For reference, I am a MAC NW20.

Overall Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Pros: Long wearing, build able coverage, wide color range, easy to blend, oil-free
Cons: Expensive, may be too matte for some wearers

I highly recommend this foundation to anyone who struggles with acne and blemishes. I have been through the ringer with skin issues and this foundation has never failed me!

Of course, I can not promise it will work for you but I put my confidence behind this product. If you've tried Teint Idole Ultra, let me know what you think! Do you prefer another liquid foundation?

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Top 10 Beauty Winners of 2009

In a recent issue of Glamour magazine, the readers and an expert panel chose their top 50 most glamorous women. I agreed with many of their picks but I thought I'd list my own Top Ten Beauty Winners of 2009. Continue reading to find out who I chose!

10. Katy Perry

Katy Perry's fashion sense is pretty bold and risky and so is her makeup! This is a girl who loves to have fun with makeup and doesn't take it too seriously. She's cheeky and a bit irreverent. Any girl who wears a hot pink lip gets an A in my book.

9. Kim Kardashian

She may come as a strange choice but I have to admit, I love Kim Kardashian's make up and overall look. She has come off too strong in the past but she's toned it down and looks gorgeous! I love her shiny long waves and doe like eyes. She (or perhaps her makeup artist?) does a great job balancing her eyes and lips for the perfect look.

8. Pat McGrath

Pat McGrath is my favorite make up artist, hands down. She is someone without any formal training but instead takes an artistic approach to beauty. She often forgos brushes and works strictly with her hands. McGrath has done a huge range of looks and thought I'm disappointed that her associated cosmetics line Max Factor is being discontinued, I look forward to the day when I can buy Pat McGrath make up....and I hope that's very soon!

7. Diane Lane

Could she be any more beautiful? This woman seems to get more gorgeous every year! I love her wholesome, natural look. Her skin is phenomenal! Talk about the fountain of youth.

6. Queen Latifah

I LOVE Queen Latifah and I always have. Did anyone else watch her talk show in the past? Maybe that was just me but you have to admit, she is an amazing model of self-confidence and poise. She just seems like an awesome person who has remained to true to herself and her values in Hollywood.

5. Kate Winslet

I think Kate Winselt is finally getting the credit she deserves. She is an amazing actress- someone with a true talent and not just a "celebrity." The media has been too caught up in her weight in the past, which is ridiculous because she has an amazing figure. I hate to be cliche but this woman glows from within and it really shows!

4. Michelle Obama

Michelle Obama gets my vote as a beautiful woman because she has brought the role of First Lady up to its 21 century level. She doesn't come across as a prop or sidekick to the President but instead is a real person, a loving wife and mother, with her own interests and values. Her style is chic and effortless, tailored to fit her athletic figure while mindful of the country' economic situation.

3. Cate Blanchett

I love Cate Blanchett because she is beautiful and unique at the same time. She doesn't fit the cookie cutter mold of beauty- she embraces her beautiful fair skin and rejects nips and tucks. I find myself looking up to her the most as a beauty icon out of all the women I listed. And like Winslet, she is a phenomenonal talent!

2. Reese Witherspoon

I might be a bit biased as I'm a Tennessee girl too but who can resist Reese Witherspoon? I love her whole attitude and ethos. She comes across a polite put together woman with a strong sense of self. And her sense of style is spot on! Witherspoon had one of the best break up come backs Hollywood has every seen and I love her for it!

1. Freida Pinto

Pinto is my pick as the most beautiful woman in Hollywood. Or maybe the world! She is absolutely gorgeous and seems completely unaware of her beauty. Just like her recent runaway hit, Slumdog Millionaire, Pinto is a sleeper in this category- someone slightly under the radar destined to become a huge success. I love her combination of neutral smokey eyes and natural lips at the Oscar's.

There you have my Top Ten list for 2009! Let me know what you think. Who would you have chosen? Check back soon and I'll have some celebrity beauty misses to talk about!

Sunday, June 7, 2009

All Natural Product Review: Sensual Soaps

I had the pleasure of coming across Nancy Lee's Sensual Soaps booth at the Memphis Agricenter this past Saturday. If you live in Memphis or plan to visit the Memphis area soon, definitely check out the Agricenter's Farmer's Market (located on 7777 Walnut Grove Rd.) on Saturdays in the summer for delicious local produce and beautiful home made products!

Nancy Lee's soaps are made entirely from natural ingredients- goats milk, olive oil, coconut oil, and other natural oils. For those of us concerned with going green and living simply, this fact is a huge plus! The soaps come in a wide variety of scents including: Lavender, Citrus, Tropical, Sweet Pea, Natural Goat Milk, Gardenia, Oatmeal, Rose, Rosemary-Peppermint, Blue Raspberry, Coconut-free Oatmeal, and Lilac! There is definitely a scent that will please everyone.

I opted to try the Lavender soap. I was very impressed by the light but distinct scent of this soap! It is not heavily perfumed like many products on the market nowadays- instead the lavender scent is fresh and natural (meaning you can layer this soap with your other scents and lotions with no worry!). I have sensitive skin and I prefer naturally scented products since they are less likely to irritate my skin. I also like that the soap is soft to the touch and doesn't strip away at your skin like many soaps. The soap lathers up nicely and left my skin smelling clean and feeling soft. I've experienced no break outs or reactions.

My mom chose the Gardenia soap (pictured above), which also smells heavenly. Nancy Lee sells Sherpa Pink Himalayan bath salts as well. The soaps are $4 for 3.75-4.5 ounce bar.

I recommend these soaps to anyone looking for a naturally scented soap at a nice price! I will definitely repurchase from Sensual Soaps.

Please check out Nancy Lee's products yourself at:
Or Email Sensual Soaps at

Overal Rating: 5 out of 5 stars.

Pros: Variety of Scents, Soft Soap, Natural, Home-made, and Lathering
Cons: None

Price: $4 per bar

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Top Ten Lip Products: Swatches

Here are rough swatches of the products I've mentioned. I used the short names only to save space. They are in order of appearance on this list. Please note that color can depend on skin tone, flash, and monitor settings so these colors may look somewhat different in person!
Products 6-10:

Products 1-5:

Let me know if you want to see any other swatches of products I've mentioned in the past or just in general. Thanks for reading!

Top Ten Lip Products

My Top Ten Lip Products:

So, this list has been circulating around blogs for quite a while and I thought I'd join in. "Lip products" includes lip sticks, balms, glosses, stains, and treatments--the whole nine yards. I've chosen by top ten based on both their formula/wear and the actual color.

*Please note- these photos were taken by me. While in no means professional, they belong to myself and this site. So, if you choose to share them in any way, please link back to and do not remove the text. Thanks!*

10. Vaseline Lip Therapy Advanced Formula- approx. $1.39

This is my absolute favorite lip treatment and I've tried everything from Chapstick to Kiehl's #1. This balm stands out because it's soothing and moisturizing without being too thick and can be found at any drugstore. I also like that the product has an almost blue-ish clear tint which makes my lips look natural but better.

9. L'Oreal HiP Jelly Balm in Delectable- approx. $9.00

Jelly Balms are a dupe for MAC's Tendertones but actually like their texture better. They are definitely "jellies" in the sense that their texture is sticky and smooth. I love the berry red color and the cotton candy smell!

8. Lancome Juicy Tubes Smoothie in Energizing Melon- approx. $18.00

Juicy Tubes are some of my favorite lip glosses. They are quite sticky which can be troublesome if you have long hair but they also last longer than most glosses because of said stickiness. I can put up with the stick factor because I adore the "Energizing Melon" shade. It's a bright coral shade with pink undertones and golden shimmer. The color is not as scary as it appears in the tube but it is bright and perfect for summer! Because of the fuchsia and coral blend, I think this lip gloss would flatter both warm and cool skin tones. Wonderful staying power!

(*I'm sorry the picture quality isn't better on this one. The flash took on a green-ish cast for some reason*)

7. MAC Hello Kitty Lip Stick in Fashion Mews (Glaze)- approx. $23.99 (LE so it's typically found on ebay now)

This limited edition lipstick is not for the color shy. Fashion mews is a pinky pale lavender hue that is very cool toned. I love Fashion Mews when I want to put the focus on my lips and I find the shade quite flattering. It's such a unique shade and the most wearable lavender lipstick I've found.

6. MAC Dazzleglass in Love Alert- approx. $16.50

I guess I'm a bit of a MAC addict when it comes to lip products. Dazzle glasses are amazing and rival my love for Lancome Juicy Tubes. The formula is less sticky and even more shimmery. Love Alert is my favorite because it's an easy way to wear red lips during the day time that isn't too over the top.

5. Estee Lauder Pure Color Crystal Lipstick in Tiramisu -approx. $22.00

I think EL gets a bad rap as an "old lady" brand. They actually have great foundation, blushes, bronzers, and lip colors! Great color pay off and staying powder. (I'm just not crazy about their eye shadows). Tiramisu is no exception. I recently discovered this lip stick and it is beautiful! I know I'm a beauty addict but this color leaves me gushing. It's a sheer peachy nude with bronze flecks. It applies with a glossy finish and it is a great color for day time. Even though, it's a warm color I find it quite flattering and feel like this shade would flatter everyone. (Tiramisu has received amazing reviews on MUA).

4. Estee Lauder Pure Color Long Lasting Lipstick in Maraschino- approx. $22.50

Another EL? See, I told you they have good colors! This is my favorite red lip stick right now. It's a cherry red shade. Great red for fair skins as it brings out your natural color without being too over bearing. Perfect long lasting formula.

3. Rimmel Lasting Finish Lipstick in Airy Fairy- approx $4.99

My perfect nude lipstick! I love this pinky-nude for day time or night. It's a good price and wears just as well as higher end lip sticks.

2. Too Faced Lip of Luxury in Marcia, Marcia, Marcia- approx $18.00

Where to begin? The packaging is adorable in a metallic pink case and crystal "gem" on top. It smells like champagne! The color is one of my favorites and perfect for blondes with its frosty pink finish and bronze shimmer (seeing a trend in my favorite colors?). I generally dislike frosts but this one is lovely. I receive the most compliments when I wear this lipstick and that's good enough for me!

1. MAC Lipstick in Snob (Satin)- approx $14.00

Snob just recently beat out Marcia, Marcia, Marcia as my favorite lip product. A baby pink with lavender undertones, this lipstick just stands out with its color and application. The lip stick applies evenly and can build up to more color. Great way to brighten up your complexion!

Honorable Mentions:

* Lypsyl Beeswax Lip Moisturizer- Cute bee inspired packaging, readily available, and softening!
Approx. $2.99

* NYX Goddess of the Night Lip Gloss in Perfect- Inexpensive, great shine, and perfect nude lip gloss! Approx. $3.50

Do any of your favorite (or least favorite) lip products match up with mine? Any suggestions? Feel free to ask me to review any item you're curious about!

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Review: Organix Hydrating Teatree Mint Shampoo

Tea tree oil based shampoos are excellent for balancing the scalp and removing any build up from other shampoos, conditioners, and styling products. My sister loves tea tree oil based shampoos since her scalp is very tender and her hair is quite dry. I decided to test out a new shampoo she purchased, the Hydrating Teatree Mint Shampoo by Organix.

You'd have to be living under a rock to miss the popularity of green and organic based products on the market. This trend is even moving on to hair care, with many popular lines offering sulfate-free shampoos and conditioners. Organix claims that their Treatree Mint Shampoo is "sulfate free" and derived from "organic Australian tea tree oils."

Why should you care about sulfates?

Sulfates are the active ingredient in creating the lather of bubbles when you shampoo. They give a squeaky clean feeling but unfortunately, they can also strip your hair of oils, making it quite dry, and causing the color to fade faster. Even if you aren't concerned with color protection or going "green," I would add least make sure to use a smaller amount of shampoo in the shower to cut back on dryness.

Back to Organix. I have naturally light blonde wavy hair, with a oily roots and dry ends. My hair is fine but has some volume and quite prone to slipt ends. I do not color my hair. I usually alternate between a volumizing shampoo and daily/clarifying shampoo and follow up with an anti-breakage conditioner.

The Teatree Mint shampoo has a fresh, minty scent and comes in a mint green flip cap bottle of 13 fl oz. I absolutely love the scent and found it lingered long after my initial shampooing. This shampoo tingles your scalp a bit and doesn't lather much (lack of sulfate, this is a good thing). My hair felt quite clean after use and I could definitely tell that product build up had been removed. However, I was disappointed to find how "sticky" this shampoo is. By that I mean it took extra rinsing to remove any residue from my hair. I recommend following up with a deep conditioner (unless your hair is very oily) because the shampoo can by drying.

After drying, I found that my hair looked cleaner, brighter, and bouncier. Since my hair is fine, anything that creates volume ("bounce") gets an extra star in my book. However, the label "hydrating" is misleading. I did not get any extra moisture with this product--hence my use of a heavy conditioner to follow up!

I'll keep using Organix Teatree Mint Shampoo once or twice a week to remove build up. It definitely keeps my hair from being weighted down and just smells amazing.

Price: approx. $6.99
Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Pros: Amazing minty scent, sulfate free, good price, volumizing, and removes build up
Cons: Drying, doesn't leave up to "hydrating" claim

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

OPI Banana Bandana Review & Pictures

So, I told you yellow is a big color for this summer, especially in regards in to nail polish...well, check out what I bought yesterday: OPI's Banana Bandana from their 2009 SUNBelievable Collection.

I did a few quick swatches to show you the color. I think it looks a bit more washed out in these pictures than in real life. It's not a color for everyone but I LOVE it! Banana Bandana is a lot more subtle in hue than many other yellow polishes.

I'm not a hand model so please excuse any silliness :)

I wrote a review of Banana Bandana on, which is duplicated below.

OPI's Banana Bandana is part of their 2009 SUNbelievable Collection. The collection features four shades, a foil sea blue (Sea? I Told You), a hot coral shade (I'm His Coral-friend), a flashy fuchsia with shimmer (If the Fuchsia Fits) and of course, our Banana Bandana.

Banana Bandana is a pale lemon yellow hue with the faintest shimmer. It dries with a shiny finish.

The color applies like a lot of yellow polishes: streaky, thin, and goopy. It took me either three thin coats (seems to work best this way) or two thick coats to achieve opacity. I will say it applied better than other yellow polishes I've tried but it's no walk in the park.

This is one yellow I can agree with. Most other yellow I've tried have been too garish for my pale, cool toned skin. I love the softer hue of this color. I just wish I could get an even finish. So far chipping and tip wear has been minimal.

I'd repurchase because this is only yellow that really flatters me and its application is better than others. I do wish yellows were easier to apply--I guess it's the nature of the pigment. Give Banana Bandana a go, just have patience.

Price: approx $8.50. Overall rating: 3.5 stars out of 5.

Love it? Hate it? Let me know what you think!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

A Wax On Candles (I'm So Cheesy)

Lately, I've been on a candle kick. I don't know what prompted this obsession but I have a feeling it has to do with the fact I'm free to burn away at home--unlike at school. My mom loves candles too--they're just a great way to treat yourself and others! I'm a bit picky about my scents though. I don't care for Yankee candles, which are readily available where I live, and I think Bath and Body Works candles are overpriced for the product. My favorite candle makers would have to be Trapp and Tyler Candles. However, I'm really just getting into them so if anyone knows some good brands let me know!

Today I bought a Tyler Candle Votive in "Hippie Chick" at a local beauty store. They didn't have any larger sizes in this scent and I like it so mu
ch I'll probably order a full size online when it runs out. Votives are a great to "test drive" a certain scent and see how much you like over time without wasting a lot of money. I paid $1.90 for my Hippie Chick votive! Trapp votives run around $3.50. This little candles are a great way to add scent, warmth, and light at a party. Or grab a few different scents for a perfect gift!

Back to Tyler's "Hippie Chick"--Tyler's website describes the scent as a "
hint of vanilla bean melds with rich exotic patchouli." Honestly, that does not sound like a scent I'd like! I'm a big citrus-y person and I love floral scents. But seriously, this candle smells DIVINE! The mix of the scents is lush, green, and exotic without being over bearing.

I also recommend Tyler's High Maintenance (a very popular scent) which is described as a "floral, woody blend combined with patchouli & vanilla with a heavy musk undertone!" And Limelight for citrus lovers like me-- an "invitingly clean, fresh fusion of pure mandarin oranges with a shocking touch of lime as a top note, a slight undertone of rich vanilla bean oil gives this a unique twist."

You can find Tyler candles at many beauty stores and boutiques or online at Tyler Candle Store. Sizes range from votive to a 70 oz. jar! A 3.4 oz jar is currently $6.25 on their main website and set of 4 votives is only $8! I found slightly less expensive prices for Tyler candles at The English Rose Gifts and Decor Website and All In Good Taste's website as well.

If you're looking for a wide variety of scents, check out Candles By Victoria. Her hand poured candles have been reviewed excellently by several bloggers. Her line is incredibly cute and clever! I love the idea of "Surprise Candle" which is filled with a layer of different scents for $7.00 plus shipping and handling. Candles By Victoria currently has over 527 scents--definetly something for everyone. You can even special request a scent! Her most popular size, Country Jar Candles, run $8.25 plus S&H for 9 oz and $12.25 plus S&H for 16 oz.

Finally, my mom and I both agree on Trapp candles, even though I love floral scents and she is a green, spicey fan. Trapp Candles' tag line is "A Bottle of Perfume in Every Candle" and they were not joking. These candles are scented heavily without being overwhelming. The scents are rich with a lot of depth. I love Pink Grapefruit (and it smells exactly like a pink grapefruit), Jasmine Gardenia (ditto, smells exactly what it sounds like), and Bob's Flower Shoppe (it's that just a cute name? it smells like the mixture of greens and floral scents you'd encounter in a garden nursery). Trapp Candles does not sell their products online from their main site but you can view their products and scent descriptions here. Check out for a range of Trapp products. A votive runs at $3.25, a small 2.1 oz candle at $6.50, a medium 5.oz at $16, and a large 7 oz. comes in at $21 (plus S&H, of course).

Let me know your thoughts on these candles--your favorite and least favorite scents. Do you have another brand to recommend? Share in comments down below.