My Beauty Favorites Week of May 18-May 24, 2015

My kids just got out of school for summer break on Friday, so our summer has started!  Between planning how to keep them busy and our road trip to Yellowstone, I am getting so excited for warmer weather and fun! This week I have been getting ready for summer by loving a fab skincare sunscreen, hair care for summer styles, and products to protect, restore and heal the skin. Tarte tarteguard 30 sunscreen lotion tarte tarteguard 30 sunscreen lotion Broad Spectrum SPF 30 ($32 USD) — tarte’s first ever, non-chemical sunscreen to help protect, moisturize, brighten and re-invigorate skin for a youthful-looking appearance. The lightweight, non-sticky liquid lotion contains all mineral, non-chemical sunscreen ingredients to help protect against the sun’s damaging UVA/UVB rays that can cause dryness, redness, dark spots, fine lines and wrinkles, among other skincare beauty boundaries. Recommended by The Skin Cancer Foundation for daily use, the skinvigorating™ formula is also infused with maracuja, red algae, soybean, apple and honeysuckle extracts to nourish, tone and retain moisture while helping to combat signs of aging for a firmer, brighter, smoother appearance. The fresh, ocean’s lily scent allows for luxurious, spa-like daily applications while the high-performance liquid emulsion seamlessly melts into skin, leaving it supremely soft and silky, without ever leaving a white cast. What I think:  I have been using this as my daily moisturizer/sunscreen for a few days. It is very lightweight and absorbs instantly into my skin.  It is hard to tell that it is a sunscreen because it is very sheer and there isn’t a sunscreen scent.  The scent is quite floral, which seems strange for a sunscreen (not tropical) but it is very nice.  I will be using this until I run out! Purchase at

Pure Abundance Style Prep ($24 USD) — Nature’s boost for fine hair-infuses all-day weightless volume that feels naturally yours. Adds lightweight, natural bulk to each strand with a botanical blend of acacia gum, passion fruit, rice bran, açaí oil and certified organic aloe. Boosts volume with a natural corn-derived polymer-helping give fine, limp strands the hold they need for body that lasts all day. Weightless conditioners detangle to help prevent breakage from combing. Helps refresh volume on non-shampoo days-without adding weight. Brilliant Spray-On Shine — ($28 USD) — Provides a sheer mist of pure shine and vitamin E to finished hair styles. Also helps eliminate flyaways. For all hair types. Imparts glossy shine, eliminates flyaways and tames frizz. Aveda Air Control Hair Spray — ($26 USD) — Take hold of innovation: with a flexible, lasting hold hair spray-for all hair types-that has a net-zero impact* on the Earth’s climate. Breakthrough pine resin technology for hold. Dry delivery. What I think: For summer, just a few great hair care products can keep your hair looking amazing, but not over done.  The Style Prep is a multi-tasker as it adds volume, detangles and refreshes volume on not shampoo days.  The Spray-On Shine really does add a healthy shine and helps with the flyaways.  And the flexible hold of the hairspray is perfect for sexy summer ‘do’s! Available at

Q’urSkin ($12 USD) — Helps cleanse impurities and prevents inflammation, as well as supports skin’s healthy appearance. Useful for skin affected with lesions, minor cuts & scrapes, minor burns, bedsores and inconsistence. treatment for inflamed acne. The new nano-technological approach enhances the skin barrier system, provides long-lasting protection and assists in skin self-healing. Available at

Q’urBurn ($18.70 USD) — Provides skin comfort and helps relieve pain sensation & skin irritation caused by minor burns. It nourishes the skin, helping to restore the skin barrier system. Useful for skin affected by minor thermal, chemical burns and radiation. Available at

Q’urFollica ($12.80 USD) — Helps to relieve burning sensation and skin irritation, as well as prevents inflammation after waxing/shaving. Useful for skin at the bikini & underarm areas after shaving/waxing where ingrown hair or razor burn can occur. Available at

What I think:  These products are essential for summer mishaps!  Their portable sizes are perfect for first aid kits for travel and to keep at home. My kids (and husband) always come to me with boo-boo’s, and the Q’urSkin is like an effective spray bandaid. The Q’urBurn relieves the pain (campfire’s anyone?) and the Q’urFollica does help with razor burn!

My Beauty Faves Week of March 9-15, 2015

It has been so warm, dry and wonderful in Kansas City this week!  I have been wearing short sleeves and really need to paint my toenails!  But it is going to turn cold and rainy by the end of the week, boo!

So, I am trying to get my skin and hair ready for the spring, along with finding a new fragrance and foundation/skincare.

This week I have been loving a new unisex fragrance, a skincare foundation, a clarifying body cream and color-saving hair products!


EAU DE GAGA by Lady Gaga ($34 for 1.7 fl. oz.)– EAU DE GAGA is Lady Gaga’s first unisex fragrance.  It is built around a beautiful heart of white violet, an intoxicating flower that fuses female and male attractions.  The scent opens with an invigorating burst of sparkling lime to counterbalance the woody-floral intensity, and evolves into a sensual trail based on leather.

What I think:  I really like this unisex scent.  I think it is perfect for women who like a woodsier scent and it would smell great on any man.  Plus, it’s a fun thought to be able to share your fragrance with your guy!

Available at mass market retailers.

Algenist Repairing Tint & Radiance Moisturizer SPF 30
Algenist Repairing Tint & Radiance Moisturizer SPF 30

Algenist Repairing Tint & Radiance Moisturizer SPF 30 ($42 USD) — Algenist’s Repairing Tint & Radiance Moisturizer SPF 30 combines key microalgae ingredients to deliver great professional color and biotechnology skincare. Made for all skin types, this lightweight formula provides extraordinary skincare results as it reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, refines skin texture while smoothing and visibly restoring skin’s elasticity and suppleness. Algenist creates a bridge between color and skincare by carefully selecting ingredients that work together to provide sheer to medium coverage to visibly even out skin tone and blur imperfections instantly. Fine lines and wrinkles appear reduced and SPF 30 helps protects the skin from sun damage.

What I think: I’ve never tried a product like this.  It applies kind of like a CC cream as it has a thick texture and gives a medium coverage, but it is buildable for heavier coverage.  But, the cool thing about this cream is after a few days of use my skin looked so good! The redness and enlarged pores I have been dealing with have been greatly improved.

Available at, QVC,, Sephora,, Ulta and

VMV Hypoallergenics Illuminants + Face-Hand-Body Lotion
VMV Hypoallergenics Illuminants + Face-Hand-Body Lotion

VMV Hypoallergenics Illuminants + Face-Hand-Body Lotion  ($75 USD 6.3 fl. oz) — Has 2 tyrosinase inhibitors, 3 reparative antioxidants, therapy-enhancing + skin-renewing microdermabrasion. Helps clarify dark spots + patches, and clarifies dark spots/patches from aging, sun/light damage, melasma, photoallergies, inflammations (rashes, acne, insect bites) + other hyperpigmentations.

Gentle enough for use as an interim facial moisturizer when slowly increasing application frequency of Illuminants+ Creams. Restored, notably more radiant, tone-balanced skin from head to toe. Gives body skin a vibrant, even-toned glow. Brightens skin beautifully. Results in clearer, tone-balanced skin that looks younger, notably more vibrant + radiant due to lighter, healthier cells.

What I think:  I have been using this on my legs and arms to get them ready for spring and summer.  My skintone looks even after use and it smooth and glowy!

Available at

Aveda Damage Remedy Daily Hair Repair ($29 3.4 fl. oz) — This daily leave-in treatment instantly repairs damaged hair, helps protect from heat styling and detangles to help prevent further damage.

Aveda Brilliant Spray On Shine ($28 3.4 fl. oz.) — Provides a sheer mist of pure shine and vitamin E to finished hair styles. Also helps eliminate flyaways. For all hair types.

Aveda Color Conserve Daily Color Protect ($24 3.4 fl. oz) — This 93% naturally derived leave-in treatment triple-protects your hair color with the powerfully effective,botanically-based color conserve complex.

What I think — all three of these products smell amazing!  Both of the leave-ins are moisturizing without weighing my hair down.  And I am loving the spray on shine!  A little gives a nice sheen to the hair!

Available at



Mother’s Day Beauty Gift Ideas

Mother’s Day is a little over a week away, time to get Mom a great gift! I usually send my mom a package of beauty products for Mother’s Day and I know she loves trying something new.

Below are a few great beauty products to give that special lady on Mother’s Day.

L'Occitane Néroli and Orchidée Collector's Set
L’Occitane Néroli and Orchidée Collector’s Set

L’Occitane Néroli and Orchidée Collector’s Set (85 USD, a $113 value) — A tantalizing and lovely fragrance, Néroli & Orchidée blends the scents of two precious white flowers in a beautiful harmony. A heart of radiant neroli essence from the Mediterranean is blended with caressing white orchid absolute from Madagascar.

This set includes:
-Néroli & Orchidée Eau de Toilette 2.5 fl.oz
-Néroli & Orchidée Shower Gel 6 fl.oz
-Néroli & Orchidée Body Milk 6 fl.oz

Available at

Laura Mercier Verbena Infusion Gel Body Moisture
Laura Mercier Verbena Infusion Gel Body Moisture

Inspired by her hometown of Provence, Laura Mercier’s new Eau Fraiche: Verbena Infusion Collection captures the crisp freshness of Verbena. Take your mom on a journey to the French countryside with one of these three refreshing formulas: Gel Body Moisture ($45 USD), Crème Body Cleanse ($30 USD), Eau de Toilette ($55 USD). 

Available at

Aveda’s stress-fix™ Home Spa Experience
Aveda’s stress-fix™ Home Spa Experience

Aveda’s stress-fix™ Home Spa Experience ($73.50 USD) — With Mother’s Day less than two weeks away, give mom the gift she wants and needs – less stress! For under $75 pamper mom with Aveda’s stress-fix™ Home Spa Experience. The proven stress-relieving stress-fix™ aroma blends calming organic French lavender with uplifting, blues-chasing organic clary sage (a Mediterranean herb) and relaxing, mood-enhancing organic lavindin (a hybrid of true and spike lavender) for an extra-aromatic experience.

Each set includes:

  • stress-fix™ body lotion 200 ml – a richly moisturizing lotion with organic aloe, organic shea butter and organic sunflower oil designed to relax the mind and lavish skin
  • travel size stress-fix™ soaking salts 6 oz – mineral rich salts to soften skin while easing anxiety formulated with organic sugar and organic sunflower oil
  • stress-fix™ concentrate 7 ml – a potent essential oil blend that includes antioxidant vitamin E and skin conditioning organic sunflower and olive oils

The stress-fix™ Home Spa Experience gift set come pre-wrapped and ready for giving… which hopefully helps reduce your stress too!


Thymes Aqua Coralline Body Scrub
Thymes Aqua Coralline Body Scrub

Thymes Aqua Coralline Body Scrub ($$22 USD): An energizing body scrub full of rich humectants and jojoba beads to hydrate and exfoliate. Mineral-rich kelp extract and sea buckthorn transform and protect, providing care and moisture for thirsty skin.

Available at

Krigler Extraordinaire Camelia 209
Krigler Extraordinaire Camelia 209

KriglerExtraordinaire Camelia 209 ($255 1.7oz, $345 3.4 oz): Created in 2009 to celebrate Krigler’s 105th anniversary, Extraordinaire Camelia 209 gathers two sorts of Camellias flowers, corsican lemon, pink peppercorn from Florida, Indian cardamom, Bourbon Vanilla, Musk de Baur, Cedar and Chinese Tea.  Camellia symbolizes excellence, pride, abnegation and modesty.

Availible at 


Summertime Hair Survival!

Summer sun and humidity really dries out my hair.  So I need to infuse my hair with moisture to make it look good in the heat!

The products below do just that, plus help me style it so it looks its best.

Klorane Shampoo with Mango Butter

Nourish that summer-dried hair with Klorane Shampoo With Mango Butter ($18 USD, 13.4 oz) Klorane Laboratories have selected mango butter for its high content in fatty acids endowed with nourishing properties.  The nourishing shampoo with mango butter from Klorane nourishes and restructures the hair shaft, closes up hair cuticles and fills in the cracks of the surface hydrolipidic film to protect it from dehydration.  A nourishing care for reinforced anti hair dryness action.   Hypoallergenic*.

I also have tried Klorane Conditioner With Mango Butter ($14 USD, 5.1 oz) — Mango butter has a high content in fatty acids which nourish the hair shaft and fill in the cracks of the surface hydrolipic film.  A specific nourishing agent has also been included in the formula to smooth down hair scales and coat the hair to facilitate untangling.  For manageable, easier-to-untangle hair in complete gentleness.  Nourished and smooth, you will once again flaunt all their shine and softness. Hypoallergenic.*

What I think:  First of all, this smells fantastic, like fresh mangoes.  Using both products result in moisturized hair that is super soft to the touch.  This system is great for every day if you have extremely dry hair — or once or twice a week for occasional deep moisturization.  Learn more at

White Sands Orchid Bliss Shampoo and Conditioner

White Sands is proud to announce the addition of Orchid Bliss Shampoo & Conditioner (9.5oz Shampoo, $19.50 & 9.5oz Conditioner, $20.50) to their current line of superior salon hair cleansing products. Encompassing a one of a kind concept, Orchid Bliss utilizes the anti-aging characteristics and mineral richness of the orchid flower to support color retention with a sulfate-free formula while providing strand revitalization and cuticle nutrition all in one.

Orchids, known for their moisturizing properties, fight free radicals, increase hair immunity and reduce the appearance of strand imperfections. Enhanced by the duo’s fresh citrus scent, the orchid extract contained in Orchid Bliss Shampoo & Conditioner in addition to natural ingredients like sunflower seed extract, grape seed oil, carrot seed, olive extract, apricot kernel & more restore back the moisture, shine, elasticity and softness to hair that has been damaged from chemical treatments, thermal stress and daily UV exposure. This orchid complex will instantly fill in the cracks and imperfections in each strand giving a high shine, making hair simply brilliant with UV protection in addition to effortlessly working in conjunction with other styling products to improve texture, repel moisture, while enhancing vibrant color.

What I think:  This lovely system is natural and gentle and can be used daily to restore hair from colorings and styling tools — and the harsh summer elements! It has a beautiful floral scent. Learn more at

Aveda Pure Abundance Collection

New aveda pure abundance style-prep infuses hair with all-day weightless volume that feels naturally yours.  Thickens strands with a 97% naturally-derived botanical blend, and boosts volume with a natural corn-derived polymer.  Give fine, limp strands the hold they need for body that lasts all day.

Build body and volume with aveda’s pure abundance system.  While naturally-derived thickeners help your hair reach its full potential, aromas of jasmine, certified organic peppermint, palmarosa and ylang ylang play to the senses.

Start with pure abundance volumizing shampoo ($16 USD) and volumizing clay conditioner ($16 USD).  Prep hair for weightless volumizing with style-prep ($24 USD).  Finish with hair potion™ ($24 USD) and volumizing hair spray™ ($17 USD) for texture and firm hold.

What  I think: I love this whole collection.  Used together, I have seen a noticeable increase in the volume of my hair. I use the style-prep by spraying on damp hair and also when my hair is dry and needs a bit of restyling.  The hair potion is also a cool product in that it is a moist powder that you rub in your hand to liquify it, then run it through your hair to immediately increase the volume.   Purchase at

Cricket Ultra Smooth Oil Combs

To tame frizzies, invest in double-duty Cricket Ultra Smooth Comb. Infused with a blend of Argan & Olive Oils and Keratin protein, this comb reduces frizz and makes hair soft and smooth sans styling sprays or serums.

Features of each comb are:

  • A blend of argan and olive oils, plus keratin protein infused plastic
  • Glides through hair easily
  • Ergonomically designed
  • Helps add shine and smoothness
  • Reduces frizz
  • Will not leave residue on hands

What I think:  These combs are like magic.  I have been wearing my hair in a ponytail, braid or bun all summer, and if it get messy, I take it out and comb it with one of these combs and it is instantly smoother!  My hair is shinier and sans frizz!  Awesome!  Purchase at ($6.49/comb)

Crush by One 1″ Ceramic Flat Iron

Crush by One 1 in Ceramic Flat Iron ($80 USD 1″, $30 USD mini ) — The Crush Flat Irons (available in 1” or as a Mini) have floating beveled plates that provide ultimate control during styling.  Wide temperature ranges make them ideal for any hair type, while the dual voltage make them travel must-haves.

What I think: I really like the temperature range on this.  My hair is fairly thin and I don’t need it too hot, but my daughter has insanely thick hair that needs a lot of heat.  It is great that we can both use the same straightener.  It also helps with summer frizzies — just use a nice heat styling product with it to prevent damage.  Learn more at







Father’s Day Fragrance and Body Care Gift Guide

Time to buy Dad something fragrant and/or good for his skin and hair.  This Father’s Day (or for his birthday or the holidays later this year) stray from the usual tie or wallet purchase and give him a nice new scent or personal care item.  He will thank you (or at least the other women in his life will)!

Some great products are:

Otter Creek Realtree Set

Otter Creek Realtree Set ($59 USD) — This is the essential set for Realtree® fans and hunters. Includes five (5) different Otter Creek products, each in a different official Realtree pattern. Includes:
One 8 oz. tube of Grit Happens (Scrubbing Body Wash)

One 8 oz. tube of Sasq(wash) (Shampoo + Body Wash)

One 8 oz. tube of Hair of the Dog – Evergreen Scent (Shampoo)

One 3 oz. tube of Camotion (Face Moisturizer)

One 0.18 oz. tube of Duck Call Primer (Moisturizing Lip Balm)

* This is a great deal! Bought individually these items would cost $81!  Purchase at

Soul 2 Soul

SOUL2SOUL Tim McGraw ($31.50 / 1.7 fl oz) is a fresh, modern and sexy aromatic woodsy fragrance. The scent opens with notes of Spicy Bergamot and White Pepper balanced with a Blackberry Brandy accord. At the heart of the fragrance is the Everlasting Flower wrapped in a classic blend of Oak Tree, Saffron and Cilantro. The deep synergy of sensual woods and musks provides the fragrance’s final encore. The scent is housed in a sleek, masculine bottle with strong, architectural facets that complement the modern refinement of the carton’s subtle starbust design. The contemporary gunmetal grey carton and bottle are balanced with polished silver design elements.

And for yourself, try SOUL2SOUL Faith Hill ($31.50 / 1.7 fl oz) — a romantic, elegant, radiant fruity floral fragrance. The scent opens with sparkling fruits like Georgia White Peach and Grapefruit, leading to a passionate heart of Everlasting Flower, Princess Rose and Lotus Flower. The fragrance dries down to a soft and intoxicating blend of cucumber, balanced with sensual sandalwood. The luminous fragrance is captured in a sophisticated, feminine bottle with accents of gold and pearl white. A captivating starbust incorporated in the bottle’s design complements the radiant gold carton’s subtle starbust accent.  I love this light, fresh scent!

Purchase at a mass market retailer near you!

Nautica Aqua Rush

Nautica Aqua Rush ($65 USD 3.4 fl oz).  Take him back to summers at the shore or on the lake with Aqua Rush, a bold, masculine and powerful fragrance that evokes the steadfast character of the classic seafarer. At once spicy and fresh, crisp and woody, Aqua Rush epitomizes what it means to be a man without limits. The energetic scent opens with brisk top notes of Sea Breeze accord and Yuzu splash with a twist of spicy-sweet Coriander. The fragrance’s heart uncovers notes of Watermint, Clary Sage Absolute and Violet Leaves. The scent is anchored by masculine notes of Amberwood, Water Musks and Teak Wood.

Nautica Aqua Rush is available at Macy’s department stores and other fine retailers.

aveda men pure-formance™ grooming essentials kit  ($32.50 USD) — Contains trial-sized products offered at an introductory price point, allowing men to easily try a range of top-selling favorites within the Aveda Men Pure-Formance™ line.  The Aveda Men Pure-Formance™ Grooming Essentials Kit comprises Dual Ac­tion Aftershave, Shampoo, Conditioner, and Grooming Clay.

Purchase at



Spring Giveaway #2

Announcing my second Spring Giveaway — a collection of products from Mirabella, Smashbox, Aveda and Julep.  These are vibrant cooler shades that will brighten your spring!

The products are:

Mirabella Colour Luxe Lip Gloss in Wink (Bright Shimmery Pink)  creates maximum shine with three-dimensional, light-reflecting shimmer. The combination of iridescent and pearlescent pearls create a star-like effect on the lips, taking Colour Luxe gloss to a new level of color purity, brightness and dimensionality. Vitamin-enriched long-lasting formula moisturizes, conditions, and provides antioxidant protection and anti-aging properties.

Smashbox Soft Lights in Shimmer (Shimmery Nude Bronze) — Get a gorgeous lit-from-within glow with this silk-like shimmering powder. The illuminating formula softens the way light reflects on your skin and wakes up your complexion for a radiant look.

Aveda Petal Essence™ Eye Color Trio in Violet Coast (lavender, gray and purple) Long-lasting, petal-smooth powder eye shadows offer crease-resistant, stay-true colors. Wear a single shade or blend several—complementary colors make it easy.

Julep Nail Color in Megan a playful and sultry Mediterranean aquamarine shimmer.

To win, leave a comment on my blog.  I will choose the winner on Friday, April 20th.  Please only residents of the United States and Canada.

Good Luck!