Mario Badescu Haul & Review [365 to 40]

Last Fall Mario Badescu had a great sale on this set for their 50th Anniversary. I was in need of a new cleanser and couldn’t pass up this gift with purchase deal. If my memory serves me right these samples came with a $30 purchase and since I did not need anything else apart from a cleanser I decided to try two.

How cute is the pouch?! I think the design is why I really made the purchase. The deluxe samples are as follows: (1) Super Rich Olive Body Lotion, (2) A.H.A Botanical Body Soap, (3) Enzyme Cleansing Gel, (4) Almond & Honey Face Scrub, (5) Elasto-Seamollient Hand Cream and (6) a sachet of the Buttermilk Moisturizer. Plus a small mirror.

Of the samples I have used the Almond & Honey Face Scrub that is specially formulated to be very gentle. It is made from finely ground almonds and also includes cornmeal to buff away dull, flaky skin. It smells amazing. Other ingredients include sweet almond oil, honey, and oatmeal that leaves the skin feeling soft, smooth, and nourished. The full size of this scrub is 4 oz and retails for $15. I also used the Elasto-Seamollient Hand Cream. This is a thick, rich hand cream that is suited for very dry or frequently washed hands. It contains a unique blend of skin-conditioning ingredients such as Elastin, Vitamin E, and Peanut Oil that combined delivers lasting hydration to soften and nourish dry skin. parched skin feels soft and nourished. This hand cream at 4 oz retails for $8. This was an effective hand cream but the scent of the vitamin E was a bit overpowering.

The two items I actually purchase:  Enzyme Cleansing Gel that cleanses, brightens, and gently exfoliates all at once. Ingredients include fruit enzymes and alpha hydroxy acids (naturally found in papaya and grapefruit extracts) to dissolve away makeup, oil, and impurities. The skin is left healthy and rejuvenated. This cleanser is suitable for all skin types and retails for $14 for 8 oz and $24 for 16 oz. The Botanical Facial Gel formulated for oily skin that features exfoliating alpha hydroxy acids to rid the skin of excess oil, makeup, and pore-clogging buildup for a balanced, clear, and healthy-looking complexion. Retails for $14 for 8 oz and $24 for 16 oz.

I am a fan of this brand of skin care products and believe that the products do live up to the company’s philosophy of simple, gentle and effective skin care.

 

The above links are not affiliated. 

Dermstore – Company Overview [365 to 40]

I cannot remember how I first came across the Dermstore but I have been hooked ever since. It was either through an ad on Facebook or feeds on Instagram. I love the extensive range of brands, products and price points. Other features I like are the free shipping, PayPal payment option and regular 20% off sales. Plus cashback through Ebates.

They also provide in-depth information on each product. Each product page features product details, ‘how to use’ instructions, an ingredient list, reviews, a link to the brand’s page, highlights on any ‘gift with purchase’ and/or if the item appears in a set or kit somewhere else on the site. The Dermstore is one of the most user/customer friendly skincare sites I have used.  They also have their own rewards program as well as a subscription service where one can have products regularly delivered.

Also of note is their blog that covers skincare, makeup, haircare, lifestyle, the latest news, and trends. Here are a few of my favorite posts to date:

9 Face Serums That Will Banish Fine Lines and Wrinkles

9 Hyaluronic Acid Serums That Do More Than Moisturize Parched Skin

Skin Care Products You Need in Your 30s

6 Skin Care Essentials You Need to Use in Your 40s

 

My most recent haul from the Dermstore.

DHC Silky Cotton (rival of Shiseido Cotton Pads), DermaE Anti-Wrinkle Cleanser and Toner, La Roche-Posay Serozinc and Avene Thermal Spring Water.

 

Dermstore was launched in 1999 with the vision of creating a trusted dermatologist-backed online store, carrying the finest cosmetic dermatology products. This online retailer was founded by a board-certified dermatologist, the company became a safe haven where customers could purchase with confidence (description courtesy of dermstore.com)

 

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The Ebates link is the only affiliated one in this post. I am not affiliated with the Dermstore.

Spring into a Glowing Skin Routine [365 to 40]

Spring is here, well trying to make it’s debut if the weather can make up its mind. Here is a great video on achieving glowing skin from a true skincare connoisseur Gothamista or Renee on YT and IG.

The above routine is ideal for dry sensitive skin but can be applied to other skin types especially during the winter months. Some of the products mentioned in the video are new to me and I have added them to my skincare wishlist such as:
(1) Ren Evercalm Gentle Cleansing Milk
(2) Tarte Knockout Tingling Treatment – Renee points out that is an affordable alternative to the Biologique Recherche P50, which I have in my routine.
(3) Blithe Vital Treatment Essence for Lifting ( 8 Nourishing Beans ) – a part of the intriguing 7 essence step that I have never heard of but will try with the May Coop Raw Sauce. I think the latter is of a similar consistency to the Blithe Vital.

I already use the Ordinary Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution and Shiseido Facial Cottons.

This is an excellent video and the routine is simple enough to be incorporated in one’s own regime.

Disclaimer: I am not the owner of the above video and has chosen to utilize the ‘share’ option on YouTube. Credit is given above to the owner.

 

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Pearlessence Rosewater Hydrating Face Mist Review [365 to 40]

I have been on a facial mist kick lately and have purchased at least five new ones. Previously, I was not a fan of facial mists but with steady use of the Mario Badescu Facial Spray with Aloe, Herb and Rosewater fell in love with them. Here are two of my recent purchases from TJMaxx online of two bottles of the Pearlessence Rosewater Hydrating Face Mist. They were on sale for $5.99 each at the time of purchase but are no longer online. It can also be purchased from Amazon where it retails for $19.90.

This pleasantly scented rose mist is described as both refreshing and soothing and is a combination of fragrant herbal and botanical extracts. It is also FREE of Common Allergy Causing Preservatives, Paraben, Lanolin, Topical Antibiotic, MCI/MI, Nickel, Gluten, and Soy.

Directions: Mist can be used after cleansing and/or toning but before moisturizing, or throughout the day over makeup.

My take: I prefer to use this mist as part of my evening routine or when I am up late at night. The scent is a nice rose although at times I think it is a bit too fragrant but not overpowering. 

 

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Review – Valentia Night Revive Retinol Serum

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Valentia’s Night Revive Retinol Serum is a potent blend of Retinol, essential vitamins and botanicals. Retinol works down to the cellular level to stimulate collagen production and diminish even the deepest of wrinkles. Vitamin C helps Retinol penetrate deeper into the skin, while Vitamin E and Squalane nourish and hydrate, counteracting the drying effects of Retinol and maximizing anti-aging benefits. This transformative retinol serum will turn back the clock, giving you visibly smoother, rejuvenated skin. The Pure Glow Brightening Moisturizer retails for $35 (1.18 fl oz / 35 ml, a 3-5 month supply) on Amazon.com or Valentia.com.

Results:
Short Term – conditions & nourishes skin, manages breakouts and adds luminosity  
Long Term – evens skin discoloration, stimulates collagen production and diminishes fine lines & wrinkles

 

Key Ingredients: 
Retinol (Vitamin A): This clinically proven antioxidant works at the cellular level to stop the formation of wrinkles, manages acne breakouts, and even out skin discoloration. It also helps reverse the clock, for more youth looking and acting skin.
Vitamin C: An essential nutrient that boosts the protective effects of retinols, guarding skin against harmful free radicals and environmental damage to prevent premature aging.
Vitamin E: Vitamin E floods the skin hydration, diminishing the drying effects of retinol as such it adds superior moisture protection.
Squalane: Derived for pure olive oil, this nutrient-rich ingredient softens and conditions delicate skin. It further assists in mitigating the dryness caused by Retinol while reducing the appearance of fine lines.

Full Ingredient List: Deionized Aqua (Water), Organic Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice (Aloe Vera), Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate (Vitamin C), Cassia Angustifolia Seed Polysaccharide (botanical hyaluronic acid), Organic Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba Oil), Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel), Kosher Vegetable Glycerin, Olive Oil Squalene, Retinol, Tocopheryl Acetate (sunflower based Vitamin E), Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, (2s)-2-Amino-5-guanidinopentanoic Acid, Organic Centella Asiatica (Gotu Kola), Wildcrafted Equisetum Arvense (Horsetail), Wildcrafted Taraxacum Officinale (Dandelion), Wildcrafted Geranium Maculatum (Wild Geranium), Pentylene Glycol, Phospholipids, Alcohol, Polysorbate 20, Potassium Phosphate, Ethylhexyl Glycerin, Phenoxyethanol.

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How To Use: Apply on cleansed and toned face & neck. Recommended to use every other night initially to determine sensitivity. 

My Thoughts: It is opaque, watery in consistency and very quickly into the skin. It does feel nice on the skin as it is not sticky and do not cause any irritation. So far I have been using it every other night. I do notice that my skin is more radiant the mornings after use. I would have to use up the entire serum before I can truly assess the long-term effects.  I typically like to  I do not wear a separate SPF product the next day as my foundation has SPF20.

It is recommended to use retinol 3 times/week in the 30’s and every other night for women 40+.To maximize the efficacy of retinol products, serums can be combined with moisturizers/cream or used separately depending on one’s skin type.  Retinols are meant to be used only at night as they can make the skin more sensitive to damage from the sunlight. When using a Retinol at night, make sure to use an SPF of 20 or higher during the day to protect your skin.

 

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Disclaimer: These products received from Valentia and their representatives through BrandBacker for review considerations. This does not  influence my opinion and this review is based on my experience with the product. The overall description of the product, some images, the benefits, and ingredients were adapted from information provided by Valentia.  

Review – Valentia Pure Glow Brightening Moisturizer

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Pure Glow Brightening Moisturizer is packed with brightening power, that lightens dark spots and enhances the complexion. With energizing antioxidants like Ginseng and Kojic Acid to control melanin production, dark spots fade and collagen production is enhanced, revealing a firmer more even skin tone. Skin moisture is replenished and protected with Botanical Hyaluronic Acid, Safflower and Shea Butter. Tired and dull looking skin is restored to unveil a healthier, more vibrant glow. The natural and organic ingredients are formulated to provide all-day weightless hydration without leaving any greasy residue. The Pure Glow Brightening Moisturizer retails for $25 (4.0 oz bottle) on Amazon.com or Valentia.com.

Overall Pure Glow Brightening Moisturizer will:
* Lightens dark spots
* Restores skin radiance
* Evens skin tone
* Diminishes fine lines
* Provides all-day hydration
* Nourishes skin

Key Ingredients:
Botanical Hyaluronic Acid: Floods skin with moisture, supports skin elasticity, and plumps skin from within.
Kojic Acid: Controls melanin production and prevents dark spots.
Ginseng: Boosts skin firming collagen, fights wrinkles, and gives the skin a brighter and more energized look.
Safflower Oil: Repairs skin’s natural moisture barrier and provide superior skin protection.
Shea Butter: Infuses skin with a myriad of vitamins and nutrients for superior skin hydration and nourishment.

Valentia Pure Glow Brightening Moisturizer can be used both morning and night, and makes an excellent starting base for your makeup application. It is suitable for all skin types and provides superior hydration for both; dry to normal and oily/combo skin types.

How To Use:
Apply on face, neck and decollete. Suitable for use in the AM and PM, after cleansing, toning and essence/serum application.

My Thoughts: This is a very thick, white moisturizer that is easily absorbed into the skin. The bottle comes with a pump that is very helpful. It does not have any specific scent which is a big plus as I am not really a fan of strong scented especially citrus face creams/moisturizers/serums. It is very hydrating which does last all day and my skin is noticeably more radiant.l think I will need to use it for a significant period of time in order to see the other effects such as the reduction in wrinkles and lightening of dark spots.
I love that it is chock full of natural ingredients. In addition to the ones noted above lemon extract, vitamin B5, green tea, aloe, licorice, salicylic acid among others. I am a fan of the Valentia line of products.

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Disclaimer: These products received from Valentia and their representatives through BrandBacker for review considerations. This does not  influence my opinion and this review is based on my experience with the product. The overall description of the product, some images, the benefits, and ingredients were adapted from information provided by Valentia.  My Amazon review name is BEATS.

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Clarins ‘Ombre Iridescente’ Eyeshadow in Silver Ivory [Review]

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The new Clarins ‘Ombre Iridescente’ Cream-to-Powder Iridescent Eyeshadow in Silver Ivory (no. 04). This ivory shadow is absolutely gorgeous and comes off more yellow/pale gold in my skin tone. These new shadows are effortless as they give ease and comfort of a cream with the long wear if a powder.

Clarins have blended iridescent, soft-focus pigments with bamboo powder for stay-true brilliance and long-lasting wear. A Vitamin E derivative keeps lids comfortable. Casts a soft, pearlescent glow during the day; a stylized, high-voltage iridescence at night.

These shadows are gentle enough for sensitive eyes and are dermatologist- and ophthalmologist-tested.

PRSampleDisclaimer: I received this product at a Clarins Spring 2016 press event at Bloomingdale’s. This does not  influence my opinion and this review is based on my experience with the product.  A portion of the description was courtesy of Clarins.com. 

 

Clarins ‘Ombre Iridescente’ Eyeshadow in Silver Pink [Review]

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Clarins Ombre Iridescente Cream-to-Powder Iridescent Eyeshadow in Silver Pink (no. 05). This shadow is a very pretty rosey pink with a silver undertone. I think these give a more satin rather than sparkly and does not have glittery finish. This cream-powder shadow applies very easily and holds up on for at least 8hrs with or without a cream base with minimal creasing.  I always use an eyeshadow primer due to my oily lids.

Clarins have blended iridescent, soft-focus pigments with bamboo powder for stay-true brilliance and long-lasting wear. A Vitamin E derivative keeps lids comfortable. Casts a soft, pearlescent glow during the day; a stylized, high-voltage iridescence at night.

These shadows are gentle enough for sensitive eyes and are dermatologist- and ophthalmologist-tested.

PRSampleDisclaimer: I received this product at a Clarins Spring 2016 press event at Bloomingdale’s. This does not  influence my opinion and this review is based on my experience with the product.  A portion of the description was courtesy of Clarins.com. 

Clarins Multi-Blush in Rose [Review]

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Clarins Multi-Blush in Rose (no. 05). This is a natural, long-lasting blush for lips and cheek. It glides on with the ease of a cream that then transforms into a powder with the heat of one’s skin. Not sure how this powdery feature will work on the lips.
It moisturizes the skin with a blend of rose, mimosa and sunflower waxes. Also, has a ‘Light Optimizing’ complex that adds radiance. The blush is not quite the best as a blush for my skin tone but could be used with a light hand as a pink highlighter. 

PRSampleDisclaimer: I received this product at a Clarins Spring 2016 press event at Bloomingdale’s. This does not influence my opinion and this review is based on my experience with the product.