Swimming Pool In A Can

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At 5:30 yesterday evening there was absolutely no relief from the scorching sun. Out of all the days, it had to be extremely hot on the day of my son’s 8th grade graduation that was held outdoors with absolutely no protection from the heat. Though there were some dedicated parents sitting directly in the sun’s unforgiving rays, others like myself, sought refuge under shaded areas to keep cool. Normally, I would have been sitting in the front row to cheer my son on; however, the heat was too much for me, Mademoiselle, and Monsieur G to bare. This chic $6.95 traditional Chinese parasol (a sunbrella) would have been the perfect fashionable alternative for sun protection, but unfortunately it was left behind as we scrambled to get to the graduation on time.

Although we were sitting in the shade, it was still hot. It felt more like we were in Arizona, Texas, or Alabama rather than California. As I searched through my diaper bag for my wallet so that I could purchase a bottle of water from the school’s vending machine, I remembered I had a can of  Splash Cool, a purified water atomizer or a swimming pool in a can, at my disposal to provide immediate relief from the summer heat. Voila! Instant hydration. I sprayed the fine mist on Mademoiselle and Monsieur G to quickly cool their little bodies and make them feel more comfortable while waiting for the ceremony to end. My kids were so happy over this little can and asked why I had been holding out.

Initally, when Splash Cool was sent to me I found no use for it. It reminded me of Evian’s version I used several years ago to set my makeup and create a dewy look after I applied a powder over my foundation. It was a great makeup tool that I no longer needed since I stopped wearing powder. However, I’m so glad I kept this little can in my diaper bag because I don’t know how long Mademoiselle would have been able to handle the heat without fussing.

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A Mini Facial Compliments of Mario Badescu

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Today, I received my samples in the mail from Mario Badescu. I was so delighted to find samples of seven different products I’ve never tried before and a personalized product application guide that listed the sample included in my package, a regime to follow in the morning and evening, and four illustrated pictures showing how and where to apply the products to be used a daily basis. I also received a detailed product guide designed to help you figure out what products to use. Though I’ve used Mario’s products before and received samples with my purchases, this was the first time I actually filled out the questionnaire and received free product samples tailored to fit my skin’s specific needs.

I found Mario by accident. I didn’t need to know that celebrities like Naomi Campbell, Heidi Klum, and Charlize Theron used his products. I was in a dire situation and was willing, at that point, to try anything. I’m happy I did because the products (with two products from Kinara) worked and corrected the problem within a week or two. Mario Badescu claims, “We make being beautiful easy.” He’s right! After witnessing first hand what the products did for my skin, my mother, sister, aunt, and cousin ran out the next day to purchase Mario’s products, and they too have had good results. 

Please take the time to find out what your specific needs are and purchase products accordingly.

Here’s what was in my sample packet:

  1. Seaweed Cleansing Soap
  2. Chamomile Cleansing Lotion
  3. Almond & Honey Non-Abrasive Face Scrub
  4. Enzyme Revitalizing Mask  
  5. Hyaluronic Eye Cream
  6. Protein Night Cream  
  7. Drying Cream

All the products I need for a DIY mini facial.


A Perfect Face: Cleansers and Moisturizers

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As luck would have it, a few weeks ago I ran out of Mario Badescu’s Collagen moisturizer with SPF 15. Normally, I would be in a state of panic but was relieved because, a few days prior, a bottle of Skin MD’s Shielding Lotion had been sent to me to review. If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, then you know that I don’t have many issues with my skin. In fact, most estheticians and makeup artist swear I don’t need to wear a foundation; nevertheless, I exclusively wear Armani’s Luminous Silk foundation anyway. I just like the way my skin looks with it on. I usually mix a small amount with my moisturizer so that I don’t look as though I have foundation on. Don’t try to understand it, just accept what I’m saying. And yes, I know your not suppose to mix foundation with moisturizer because it’s best to allow the moisturizer to absorb completely into your skin first. But I digress…

In the beginning, when I used Skin MD’s Shielding Lotion; a light weight, non-greasy cream, my face felt extremely tight and dry for a few days and eventually started to peel. I was tempted to stop using it, but realized that it needed to be used as directed in order to achieve results, which for me translates into a nice glow. Healthy skin should have a dewy appearance; not oily. I was able to see my skin recover and the radience I was looking for after I got over the intial hump. The fact that the lotion needs to be applied every 2-8 hours is a problem for a busy mom like me and it lacks sun protection.  

The lotion is designed to act as a protective barrier that keeps irritants out and moisture in. Although you will not see results immediately, with continual usage as directed, it is ideal for those who have dry skin because it doesn’t wash off right away and it will help to restore skin.  In fact, it is recommended for those who suffer from eczema or psoriasis. 

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 Now that I’ve also run out of my main face cleanser, Mario Badescu’s Enzyme Cleansing Cream, a non-foaming gel cleanser that removes dirt and makeup and is a gentle exfoliate, I need to purchase another. Though I like the results of using the cleanser, I also like to change thing up since skin becomes less reponsive to products after long-term use. I’m placing an order for the Orange Cleansing Soap that I will use daily to help remove the build up from the skin’s surface.

Every 2 to 3 days I like to use a deep cleanser that not only exfoliates, but reduces minor discoloration. Badescu’s Glycolic Foaming Cleanser is perfect for that. As far as a moisturizer goes, I will continue to use the Collagen Moisturizer (SPF-15), a cream that pumps the skin and seals in moisture. At night I’m hooked on Kinara’s Skin Quencher and Skinceutical’s Hyaluronic Serum. You can read my post About Face for details on why I selected these products and where to find them.      

Though Mario Badescu’s products are used by celebrities like Naomi Campbell, they are reasonably priced and will last a long time. For example, the Orange face soap is only $12. If you fill out a skin questionnaire, you’ll get an email with a list of recommended products that they will send you free samples of. 


About Face

When I moved back home from Michigan, I immediately set out to find a really good esthetician. After months of searching, I thought I had finally found a good one, until the day she ruined my skin. Visual Changes was the product line she highly recommended and stood by, saying it was the best thing for my skin. First of all, I didn’t have a major skin problem to begin with, but after using Visual Changes I did. Whatever the ingredients were in the face wash and moisturizer caused my oily skin to dry completely out. Prior to using the products, my face would get extremely oily, especially in the heat of summer. Well, guess what! After using Visual Changes’ products the heat had the opposite effect, causing my skin to become very dry. I must not fail to mention how the blemish creme burned my skin, resulting in hyperpigmentation. Yep! I had a huge, dark brown dot right in the middle of my forehead that only went away after using bleaching creme. Needless to say, I was really upset. My skin was extremely dehydrated. When I started noticing fine lines around my eye area, I quickly sprung into action and was fortunate to find several products that helped whip my skin back into shape. I’m so glad to be able to share them with you today.

ccm_enzymecl.jpgMario Badescu makes a great skincare line. I use the Enzyme Cleansing Gel ($12) because it provides gentle exfoliation (papaya extract) without drying my skin. It’s perfect for all skin types. In addition to this cleanser, I also use their Glycolic Foam Cleanser ($15) two to three times a week. Although this cleanser can be used on all types of skin, glycolic has a tendency to be a little drying, but I use it because it helps to even and smooth out my skin tone. If you have acne or congested skin, then I would advise you to use it on a daily basis.

Since my skin was in a state of duress, I had and still continue to use the following products: 

To deeply moisturize my skin, once a week I use the Intensive Hydration Mask ($32) by DDF. With this mask, a little goes a long way; it will be in your medicine cabinet for a long time.

At night, I lock in moisture with Kinara’sNighttime Skin Quencher ($60). The shea butter in this cream contributes to its ability to combat dehydration. Don’t worry, you’ll have this product a long time too!

skinceuticals_hydratingb5tn.jpgBefore I apply any moisturizer to my face in the morning and at night, I first use Skinceutical’s Hydrating B5 Gel ($65) because it contains hyaluronic acid, an ingredient that enables the skin to retain water, helping it to stay hydrated. This is a miracle serum. I highly recommend it for all skin types. Remember, a good moisturizer is key to fighting wrinkles.

I know these products come with a hefty price tag, but the results are priceless. I no longer have the problems that were associated with my skin being dehydrated.

All of these products can be found at Kinara’s Skincare Clinic located on Robertson Blvd in Los Angeles and on her website. If you’re lucky, you might even run into Halle Berry who goes to Kinara for her weekly facials.    


Ask The Fashionista: Sun Protection

I swore to myself that I was going to bed early, but as I quickly glossed over the names in my inbox one name in particular caught my eye; it belonged to my long-time friend, Nanora. This email was slightly different because it came from her indirectly. Whenever someone leaves a comment on this website an email notification is sent to me. So, I was eager to read what Nanora had to say because she has been a long time supporter of my crazy ideas and whims. I’m sure she remembers the time when I declared that I was becoming a soap-maker. Yeah, I thought you’d get a kick out of that one. Although she may have been thinking, “What is this girl doing now,” she never voiced a negative opinion, but rather made me believe that I could do it and even offered to be my guinea pig. Girl, thank you!

Nanora, here’s the answer to your sunblock question. There is a product line that really works well for my skin, and that is Skinceuticals. They offer four types of sun protection dailysun30.jpgcremes, but I would recommend you use their Daily Sun Defense SPF 20 which is great to wear without or with a foundation. Skinceuticals uses zinc oxide, which absorbs sun rays rather then scatter them like titanium dioxide; thereby, extending your protection. When you’re ready to hit the mountains for camping, skiing, or snowboarding then I recommend you use their SPF 45, designed for higher altitudes. You can purchase Skinceuticals online at drugstore.com, at Equinox Spa on Wilshire Blvd., or Skin Systems on Westwood Blvd.

I hope that answers your question. Also, I added two links to my blogroll just for you. Every single one of those websites do an outstanding job of reviewing unique, interesting products that I’m sure you’ll enjoy trying.