Besame Cosmetics Vintage Reds Pro Palette

Besame Cosmetics Vintage Reds PaletteBesame Vintage Pro Palette SwatchesBesame Cosmertics MerlotThis reds palette is the real deal. I’ve been playing with it for a couple of months and as far as reds are concerned, all is GOOD. The Besame Cosmetics Vintage Reds Pro Palette offers five reds raging from deep wine reds to more orange/ true red colors. My favorite on myself (see image) is Merlot, a truly 1930’s red that applies and feels semi matte, to me the perfect balance for a lip color with this pigment. Mattes are great but in winter time, they can be challenging, and I end up relying on lip treatments before I start makeup on my client/ model.

When I bought my Besame Cosmetics Vintage Reds Pro Palette, I called the Besame store in Burbank, CA and had it shipped to me in NJ. For a while I’d been in desperate need for true reds, reds that don’t fray and look good on camera. I try lots of lipsticks regularly and I gotta say, palettes always win because when I need to come up with a color, I can just look at these and in my head decide to use them as they come or mix with a different medium to alter the shade. If and when I mix my colors, I use the Makeup Forever Flash Palette, I can create any color with a good base of red and make them more fuchsia with white or warm them up using an orange/ yellow.

Back to Besame, I hope you like the swatches. As most of you know, I do makeup professionally and although I have many drugstore and prestige brands I like, my preference always lies with pro brands. The range of colors in this palette is Besame Red, Cherry Red (as seen on Jessica Lange in American Horror Story), Red Hot Red, Red Velvet (as seen on TV show Agent Carter) and Merlot (see my photo). These colors can also be purchased individually on the Besame Cosmetics website. I just love being able to scoop product out and customize. Pigment is strong for these colors, ingredients are squalene, vitamin C and aloe and there is a soft vanilla after taste/ flavor.

This month Besame Cosmetics will be hosting its official Sephora launch in New York City. There will also be a private event hosted at Chic Studios, New York on Janurary 30th. Gabriella Hernandez will be in town to do a demo on historical makeup looks, this is a very unique opportunity for makeup enthusiasts. If you want an invite and live in the area, drop me your email address below. Space is limited.

***This palette was my own purchase using my pro artist discount***
**All opinions and views are my own.

Borghese Brightening Mud Mask For Face And Body Review

Borghese Fango Brillante
Borghese Brightening Mud MaskBorghese Mask Before and AfterJanuary. It is cold. For me these freezing months are all about survival of the “driest skin ever” syndrome, and when I receive products like the Borghese Brightening Mud Mask For Face And Body I get reaaallly excited. The formula for this mask offers brightening and hydration, music to my ears, love for my skin. By using a weekly or bi-weekly mask there are some added benefits like pore minimizing, and evening out the skin tone. If you stick to it, potentially and with other skincare regimen in place ie. deep hydration, toning and cleansing – a smooth, luminous skin should be your end result.

I’ve been using this mask more than once a week starting in the new year because late in December, I got sick with a mean cold/ dry cough. Because of that, my skin took a massive beating from dryness and dullness. I spent A LOT of time by the heater in misery. Applying the Borghese Brightening mask, right away I felt it was soft on contact, no lather, mild tingle but gentle. The way I suggest using, if possible, is leaving it longer than five minutes, wait until it is dry. After I rinse it off and my face was fully cleansed, I felt it helped when doubling up with a deep hydrating moisturizer, like a good night repair treatment. The scent is like a fresh bouquet of roses, soft and refreshing. I think this would be good for both dry and oily skin, as it is purpose is mostly brightening and repair.

This mask is an investment but if you are like me, you might need the extra help. I’ve reviewed a few masks, and this one is definite luxe and feels like a treatment, so you gotta stick with it to notice results. Since using this, I’ve had many days without makeup, feeling AND looking more radiant, if I may say so myself.

Ingredients:
Citrus Unshiu Peel Extract and Sweet Almond and Avocado Oils.

Borghese Brightening Mud Mask For Face And Body retails for $37 for a 7 oz jar

**This product was given to me for editorial consideration, all opinions and views are my own**

Glam Glow ThirstyCleanse™ Daily Hydrating Cleanser Review

GlamGlow ThirstyCleanse Daily Hydrating Cleanser Reviewglam glow thirsty mud cleanser swatchA friendly warning, I am giving you the good word on one of my new favorite cleansers for dry skin. The newly released Glam Glow ThirstyCleanse Daily Hydrating Cleanser hit the markets this January 2015. Glam Glow came up with the concept for a daily cleanser based on the same benefits of its popular hydrating mud treatment (there is also a cleanser for oily skin called SuperCleanse). Nothing will make a bigger difference to your skin than properly cleansing and removing makeup – if you wear makeup often and even sometimes. This cleanser does both cleanse and hydrate and uses a “mud to foam” approach. To activate this product, you have to gentle massage it all around your face, and it will cleanse, hydrate and rinse impurities.

If your skin is dry like mine, then this cleanser will wow you. One of my main problems with finding cleansers I love is the fact that I get flaky skin when the chemicals are harsh and feel itchy or scaly afterwards (hence why I don’t review many). Glam Glow ThirstyCleanse Daily Hydrating Cleanser is packed with good ingredients like pure green coconut water, olive milk (made from olive plant), South Pacific Plumeria flower blossom extract rich in Omegas and Teoxi Olive leaf powder – another ingredient which delivers linoleic acid to retain moisture. This Glam Glow cleanser has no parabens, sulfates or phthalates, and can be used twice a day.

Basically, on contact it lathers up if you massage it onto skin, not a lot in my opinion (see image). The scent is of coconut, FYI. My skin is combination dry/ sensitive and I noticed no reactions/ itchiness, I felt and liked the moisture post cleanse. I am usually not a fan of any foaming lather but this worked, it is gentle and more importantly it dissolves makeup very well.

The bottle is 5 oz and the complete ingredient list:
Water, Sodium Cocoamphoacetate, Sodium C14-16 Olefin Sulfonate, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Water, Withania Somnifera Root Extract, Butylene Glycol, Kaolin, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Montmorillonite, Olea Europaea (Olive) Leaf Extract, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Plumeria Acutifolia Flower Extract, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Cetearyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate, Glycerin, Propanediol, Cocamidopropyl Hydroxysultaine, Glyceryl Polyacrylate, Olea Europaea (Olive) Leaf Powder, Allantoin, Mica, Xanthan Gum, Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Fragrance, Coumarin, Linalool.

Glam Glow ThirstyCleanse™ Daily Hydrating Cleanser retails $39 and is available at Sephora.

**This product was given to me for editorial consideration, all opinions are my own.

Staying In Touch: My New Year Resolution With Walmart Best Plans

**This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #HappyNewMe #CollectiveBias**
Samsung Galaxy Walmart Best PlansSamsung Galaxy 4G Walmart Best Family Plans
My new year resolution is all about connectivity and staying on top of mine and my husband’s schedules. I am achieving this new year resolution at home by switching to a newer family smart phone for my beloved husband. In this new year 2015, I decided to get rid of my husband’s old phone (He likes Android smart phones while I use a different operating system). Since he is very particular and has to keep separate lines for business, I got him a brand new Samsung Galaxy Exhibit from Walmart which offers the Lowest Priced Unlimited Plans. His previous phone was on its last leg, always running out of battery whenever we’d text a lot, it was very annoying and inconvenient. We both travel a lot for work and staying in touch is imperative when arranging children pick up, shopping and every day things like when each would get home from work, nanny, dog walking, etc. With my husband having a new Samsung Galaxy Exhibit phone, I feel a lot better achieving my every day tasks and even more secure knowing that we have no issues with signal/ connectivity.Samsung Galaxy Four Walmart Best PlansSamsung Galaxy Four Get Walmart Best PlansWalmart Best Family Plans Display
One of the major reasons on us switching was service coverage in my area is excellent using the Walmart Family Mobile service. Before, we’d get pretty bad signal and that was a big issue. Work schedules for both of us are completely different, I work a lot on weekends and my husband is home with my children so we definitely rely on communicating while one of us is away from home. The two apps we use the most are Whatsapp, Google Apps and Facebook for staying in touch with our loved ones. Whatsapp is an fantastic took for connectivity because we use two different operating systems and this cross-platform mobile messaging app works all over, even when we travel outside of the country which my husband does pretty regularly. One of the best features of the Samsung Galaxy Exhibit is its seven hour talk time, this means great battery life as well as wifi calling.

The combination of service and cost was yet another incentive to getting this new year resolution in place between my husband and I. One of the biggest draws is the Walmart Family Mobile service which costs $34.88/ month for Unlimited Talk, Text, & Web ($29.88 for a second line) and it comes with 5GB of 3G Data. This is a pretty good deal all around and for a phone that offers great features as well as excellent battery life as most Android smart phones do.

Quaker® Oatmeal Squares Brown Sugar With Blueberries, Chia, Flax Seeds Recipe

**This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and Quaker. All opinions are mine alone. #CollectiveBias #LoveMyCereal #QuakerUp**
Quaker Oatmeal Squares RecipeWith the new year upon us, I’d love to share an easy breakfast/ snack recipe using Quaker® Oatmeal Squares in Brown Sugar flavor. This recipe idea can be done with traditional Quaker® Oatmeal and Quaker® Granola products as well, all depends on your preference for texture, I personally #LoveMyCereal in Quaker® Oatmeal Squares Brown Sugar. For this recipe, I felt the taste of Quaker® Oatmeal Squares cereal in Brown Sugar would work perfectly using ingredients from my native Peru, flax and chia seeds plus some frozen blueberries to add some juicy fruit flavor. I used low fat milk but for those who don’t do traditional milk, you can use almond, rice or even coconut milk to moist the ingredients and blend all the flavors together. It is so delicious and filling! What makes this #QuakerUp cereal so filling is the high content of protein from the cereal alone, 6g to be exact (**This info can be found on the product label/ cereal box).

Quaker® Oatmeal Squares Recipe For Snacking Breakfast  copy
While considering how to make better choices about my nutrition, I always think of what would benefit my skin too, our largest organ as the rest of my body. I added blueberries to my Quaker® Oatmeal Squares in Brown Sugar recipe for that reason, they are amazing for our skin and taste yummy. As for the chia and flax seeds, I have been eating them since being little because in Peru they are pretty much part of our diet, much like quinoa and fish ceviche where I come from (Lima, Peru’s capital). I managed to find flax seeds (see photo) and added a dash of chia seeds for extra consistency, think of the seeds as a topping on a dessert. Both these seeds have exceptional nutritional value and have become increasingly popular in North America/ Europe.
Chia Seeds For Quaker Oatmeal Squares RecipeQuaker Oatmeal Squares Brown Sugar Blueberries Chia SeedsIMG_8478
Your portions can be as small as possible for a snack alternative or maybe a late solid breakfast that actually fills you up with good ingredients like fiber and protein. The reason why I chose Quaker Squares is because they are truly super tasty, packed with nutrients and crunchy which makes this recipe perfect for adults and children.

How to make Quaker® Oatmeal Squares Brown Sugar With Blueberries, Chia and Flax Seeds

1) Pour your Quaker® Oatmeal Squares Brown Sugar cereal (or Quaker® Oatmeal) dry in a bowl. Since it is winter, I warm the milk up just a touch, I set it separately on a stove top for less than a minute and let it sit.

2) On a separate bowl, I mix the chia and flax seeds together with a spoon, once they are blended together, they are ready as your topping.

3) Pour the milk onto cereal. Next I sprinkle a handful of blueberries followed by a spoonful of my chia and flax seeds, like a topping. Mix all your ingredients together and voila, your breakfast/ afternoon snack is ready to be enjoyed. **You can also mix in some Real Medleys and Simply Granola into this recipe, I’d simply grind them a little as an extra topping, total deliciousness.

Wink Brow Bar New York

Wink Brow Bar NYC Before And After PhotoWink Brow Bar After Threading PhotoBrows are my most favorite thing to discuss, aside from skin. Groomed brows are a big deal, it is the outline to our expressions, and even without makeup, brows make everything just right. Last Monday, I went to Wink Brow Bar in New York city to try brow threading and tinting, a first for me and suffice to say, I loved my experience at this salon. The treatment took less than half an hour and results were fabulous.

I need to start by stating that I am not a fan of wax in the face especially in the brow area. From previous experience, I feel that wax burns, irritates sensitive skin like mine and can create more harm than good, if you take too much hair for example (the horror). Threading is much more precise and on contact less painful because it removes hair at once using a cotton thread. I am purposely posting makeup-less photos to show you the power of a good groomed brow, hope you don’t mind? Some days I love going out without any makeup on, it feels good to let my skin breathe.

Wink Brow Bar is a well-run salon, it is pristine, professional and everything is done to the highest standards. As soon as I sat down on my chair, I noticed the brow tech using anti-bacterial in her hands, perfect table manners. When she started threading my brows, it went by fast and strategically – it wasn’t a huge removal of hair namely because, I admit it, my brows have good natural shape. Upon finishing my threading, it was suggested I’d get some tinting to even out some sparse growth at the end of my brows, to which I agreed to, much needed. The process of threading at Wink Brow Bar did not hurt. Soon after I noticed some very mild redness (which is normal as my skin is pretty sensitive but I wasn’t in pain or worried, it went away fast, and without pain).

The tinting part of my brow treatment took literally minutes. I had a tiny amount placed all along my brow, heavier around the ends. The before/ after pictures will show the difference this treatment made. Results of the brow tint should last up to six weeks, maybe less depends on the hair. Also for threading, I grow hair between four to six weeks, plucking in between. Overall, I LOVED my brows after having them done at Wink Brow Bar in NYC. One more thing, you get a super relaxing head massage with your brow service, who doesn’t love a little extra TLC?

**Service was complimentary at Wink Brow Bar, all opinions and views are my own.
***Thanks to the Beauty Council for this opportunity

Bright And Healthy Stocking Stuffers


Oral B Pro Health BoxOralB3000 electric toothbrushSmiles With Oral B

At our home we love useful gifts during the holiday season and by that I mean, gifts that are good all year, stuff we can use everyday and of quality ideally. This is why the Oral-B Pro-Health 3000 is such a good buy and excellent stocking stuffer (a fancy one I’d say). The Oral-B Pro-Health 3000 at Target is the perfect gift to power holiday smiles, see my photo with my son? I am always trying to emphasize the importance of healthy, pearly teeth to him and he is also starting to understand this concept at 7 years old.

The Oral-B Professional Care 3000 electric toothbrush protects our gums plus it helps in preventing and reversing gingivitis (bad breath). This electric and rechargeable toothbrush comes with CrossAction bristles designed to get deep in-between teeth for a better clean all year. On the brush, there is an indicator to let you know when it’s time to change the brush head as bristle’s color fades away. The pressure sensor will work to let the user know if you are brushing too hard and stops pulsations for proper pressure. All these features are pretty good. The Oral-B Pro-Health 3000 available at Target is the perfect gift to power holiday smiles.

Also, I wanted to let you know about an amazing offer from Target.com, get $20 off your purchase of the Oral-B Pro-Health 3000 at Target.com. This an excellent offer if you are looking for the perfect gift to power holiday smiles at Target.

I’ve been using this brush for a few weeks now and totally LOVE it. My teeth are very sensitive and I like the fact that this has a sensor in case you brush too rough which happens to me sometimes. Also, it can be used for the whole family, all you have to do is use the color-identifier bands that come with refill toothbrushes in a pack of three. The charging time lasts up to two weeks, which is pretty awesome and it is all electric-powered.

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Nudestix Magnetic Eyecolor Immortal Bronze Review

Nudestix Magnetic Eye Color ImmortalNudestix Smokey EyeNudestix Magnetic Eye Color Immortal SwatchIn the world of neutrals there are always new items, 24-hr pencils, waterproof products and palettes. I am someone who is all about the LESS is MORE mantra and Nudestix Magnetic Eyecolor pencils are definitely MORE for me. I was recommended this little gem from Canada by a very respected makeup artist friend a while ago. In November while it was my birthday month, I went for it and ordered a Nudestix to try with my hardly ever used Sephora VIB, and the love was instant. Suffice to say with neutrals like brown, beige and black being my favorite colors and ones I work with the most, discovering a cream + a pencil that blends smoothly like a velvet-y powder is the butter to my toast.

I chose Nudestix Magnetic Eyecolor Immortal, a rich brown with a slight gold pigment, perfect for a subtle and quick smokey eye makeup as well under eye color. Nudestix come in 8 shades neutral shades ranging from nude, gold, browns and black. What I like about these pencils, aside from the easy blending quality that sets them aside from most cream products which tend to dry quickly, is their wearability and matte colors that are perfect for day/ night looks. Another big plus, it works with other products seemingly well *Powder shadows or liquid eyeliners.

Nudestix Magnetic Eyecolor pencils don’t need eye primer or any base at all, in my opinion/ personal experience, unless you are in humidity or have excessively oily lids. My LOTD in that photo is using only Nudestix and mascara, I loved the soft smokey eye finish and felt it was just right. I am already into getting more and also trying the concealer pencils and more of the eyeliners/ eyeshadows – all for personal use.

Nudestix Magnetic Eyecolor pencils are available in Sephora and retail for $24, they come in a super cute case with a mirror and a sharpener for them.

Ingredients
Isododecane, Cyclopentasiloxane, PEG/PPG 19/19 Dimethicone, Synthetic Wax, Hydrogenated Polydicyclopentadiene, Nylon-12, C20-40 Alcohol, Perfluorononyl Dimethicone, Polyglyceryl-4 Diisostearate/Polyhydroxystearate/Sebacate, Polyethylene, Dimethicone/Vinyl Dimethicone Copolymer, Pentaerythrityl Tetra-di-t-butyl Hydroxyhydrocinnamate, Silica, Isoceteth-10, tocopherol [+/- Mica, Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Iron Oxides (CI 77491, CI 77492), Carmine (CI 75470), Ferric Ferrocyanide].

****This was my own purchase and opinions/ views are my own

Monat Global Rejuveniqe™ Oil Intensive Review

Rejuvenique OilRejuvenique Oil detail
It’s been windy and super freezing here in the northeast and the oils are getting used more and more in my daily skincare regimen. Today, I am reviewing Monat Global Rejuveniqe™ Oil Intensive, a multi-tasking product that’s so good, it can be applied on the face, hair and body (even the nails for those suffering from winter dry skin in the cuticles). This is an oil that can be used on its own, perfect for night time or daytime. I’d loved using it when I get up and before bed, the texture and consistency is lovely with a soft citrusy scent. Oils, unlike regular moisturizers, are fast acting and deeply hydrating, this is why I love using them in winter time, they repair and do their job in a flash. Monat Global Rejuveniqe™ Oil Intensive is what I’d consider a great blend of quality components that won’t leave you feeling greasy at all. The list of ingredients on this oil is quite impressive, some of these I’ve used before and definitely endorse as sources of deep, conditioning hydration for the most dry of skins.

Abyssinian The Key ingredient in Rejuveniqe Oil Intensive. From the crambe abyssinica plant native to central Africa, it’s a rare and unique combination of fatty acids prized for their ability to do everything from mimic the effects of silicon for unbeatable shine; lubricate the hair deep into the follicle; and protect and coat each strand.
BaobabThe renowned baobab trees have grown for centuries in the arid climates of India and Africa, and its exotic oil from the tree’s seeds are rich in antioxidant-rich palmitic acid and Vitamin F.
Buriti The fruit of Africa’s Moriche palm – known as the Tree of Life – is one of the world’s richest sources of beta-carotene, which moisturizes and nourishes.
Camelia Also known as tea-seed oil, it’s ultra-hydrating oil responsibly harvested from China that cleans the scalp and pampered dry stands thanks to its abundance of Vitamin E and polyphenols.
Carrot Seed Specially sourced from the mountains of Switzerland, it’s rich in Vitamin A to condition the scalp, plus Alpha Linolenic Acid for anti-inflammatory protection.
Monoi Selectively sourced from the warm tropics of Tahiti, it’s a restorative oil rich in Omega 3 and fatty acids to heal damage and promote growth from the root.
Meadowfoam This oil is sourced right from the Pacific Northwest of the USA. Named for its flowers’ resemblance to white foam on the ocean, meadowfoam oil is another outstanding source of Omega 9 fatty acids for shine and sheen.
Moringa Ancient Egyptians prized Moringa Oil for its nourishing properties, thanks to antioxidants and Vitamin E, which help combat skin fatigue, plus clean and purify the scalp.

Also very important and key to mention is the fact that Monat Global Rejuveniqe™ Oil Intensive does not contain parabens, sulfate, phthalates, PEG, DEA/MEA (all linked to harmful diseases), any harsh salts or harmful colors/ fragrances. This is definitely an oil that was well received by both my face, neck and body, where I have the most trouble keeping hydrated these winter months. I am very sensitive and did not feel an itch or reaction at all from using the oil.

Monat Global Rejuveniqe™ Oil Intensive retails for $99 for 1fl oz/30ml and is available online.

**Thanks to Ifabbo for the press sample and opportunity to review this product. All opinions and views are my own**

Bezel Box Review

Bezel Box JewelryBezel Box ContentsFor something totally unique in the world of subscription boxes, may I present you with Bezel Box. Upon arrival, my Bezel Box was stylish, on trend and a beautifully wrapped box. Subscribers can choose to sign up for a monthly box for as little as a 3 month period, 6, or as long as 12 months. Each Bezel box offers 4-5 coordinated pieces of boutique custom jewelry costing $35 and shipping for free in the continental US (it is also offered internationally, rates vary depending on the country). There is also a mini Bezel box option, offering two pieces of jewelry for $19.97, free shipping as well.

My box consisted of a green and red with gold accents necklace, earrings, ring and bracelet. It is hard to decide which I liked more but am definitely a fan of the necklace, followed by the ring. For me a mini Bezel box would be a more viable option, simply for the reason that I mostly wear minimal jewelry, usually a ring and or a necklace, sometimes both. During the winter time, I am mostly covered up and although that’s not an excuse to not feature jewelry, I am a minimalist when it comes to accent pieces and such.

Back to my two favorites, the necklace has some stunning elements perfect for a LBD and although the colors give me spring and summer vibes, I liked them. My other favorite was the ring and mostly because it is chunky and perfect for wearing in different fingers, as the band is adjustable. The earrings were also super cute, not too chunky and the colors very complimentary, although not necessarily my style as they are very Boho. The bracelet was super adorable but for me, this would be a summer kind of accent more than anything else.

Overall, I’d say for the fashionista and accessories fan or someone looking to build their arsenal on a small budget, Bezel box offers a great service delivered right at your door. Once you sign up to Bezel box there is a rewards program, for every month of subscription, you can earn points toward the purchase of accessories on their online store.

Bezel Box is on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram @Bezelbox

**This box was sent to me as a press sample, all opinions are my own.