Best skin care trends for back to school

Best skin care trends for back to school

I can’t believe all the terrific beauty products on sale at Meijer next week for their Fall Beauty Week – everything needed to take care of yourself from tips to toes. Here are some of my skin care picks, including an awesome tote bag set to carry all those goodies!                                                                 samples

Modella 9 Piece Tote Set

Modella 9 Piece Tote Set

I am loving this tote bag set! The Modella 9 Piece Tote Set is a great bargain to begin with, and an even better bargain during Fall Beauty Week. The bags are waterproof and easy to clean, and there’s a size for every possible need you might have.

Garnier SkinActive Micellar Cleansing Water

If you haven’t tried Garnier’s Micellar Cleansing Water yet, now is your chance. It’s an excellent cleanser especially for those nights when all you want to do is fall into bed. You won’t skip washing your face when all it takes is a cotton pad – the Micellar Cleansing Water attracts dirt and oil, so no water or scrubbing is necessary.

derma e Anti-Wrinkle Vitamin A Retinyl Palmitate Creme

If you have very dry skin and want something that moisturizes and treats wrinkles, definitely try the derma e Anti-Wrinkle Vitamin A Retinyl Palmitate Creme. Retinyl Palmitate is pure Vitamin A, one of the best antioxidants available. Be sure to use a spatula so you don’t accidentally contaminate the moisturizer, and pick up some of awesome derma e products in the sample packs if you can. They are perfect for travel or to keep at your desk – just use a pin to prick a hole in the sample pack which helps the product last and keeps it from spilling out.

Olay Eye Cream and Aveeno Absolutely Ageless moisturizers A few more skin care recommendations that you can find on sale next week at the Meijer Fall Beauty Week:  for eyes, check out the Olay Eye Lifting Serum. It has cutting edge ingredients including fantastic antioxidants and peptides and I think it’s one of the best drugstore eye serums available. Two other favorites are from Aveeno’s Absolutely Ageless line. The Daily Moisturizer has excellent broad spectrum sun protection, improves skin texture and tone, and is a great moisturizer for those with combination to oily skin. The Restorative Night Cream is another winner, reducing the look of fine lines and wrinkles while also firming and toning skin. Great stuff!

Get your shopping list ready – Meijer’s Fall Beauty Week starts September 11th.  – Lisa

*sponsored post, opinions all my own!

Cleanse and treat the New Zealand way with Ao Skincare

Ao SkincareI am always up for trying something new and the New Zealand line Ao Skincare intrigued me. Ao Skincare just launched in the US and is a dermatologist-led anti-aging cosmeceutical line.
Dermatologist Dr. Mark Gray has a chain of 17 clinics nationwide.  He noticed that a large percentage of people don’t stay loyal to their skin care brands.  Why? Mostly because products simply don’t live up to their hype, as well as because of the polarizing approach many companies take in the science vs. nature debate.

His vision?  To provide evidence-based skin care products with no compromises that are the perfect blend of science and nature.  This is what makes Ao Skincare different:

•  a unique delivery system that avoids the need for traditional emulsifiers. This means that the anti-aging ingredients are not damaged by heating them up to 190 degrees farenheit (as is normally the case in most skin care methods of manufacture).
‘next generation’ botanical boosters that potentiate (or boost) their already potent active anti-aging ingredients. Ingredients like Ferulic Acid and Bakuchiol are seldom used but have incredible efficacious results.
They are natural – the entire range has successfully been developed without the use of parabens, sulfates, PEGS, TEA, DEA, mineral oils, petrochemicals, and contains no artificial fragrances.
• The incorporation of a number of relatively un-discovered antipodean botanicals from New Zealand that have proven anti-aging efficacy.
The Ao Skincare line has six products that are helpfully numbered so you know the order in which to use. I was sent two products to test:  #1 Cleanser – Prepare ($40) and #4 Serum – Restore ($120).

Ao Skincare Cleanser - PrepareThe #1 Cleanser – Prepare is in an airless pump, which I think is always good news for any sort of skin care. It comes out like a gel and you smooth it onto dry skin first, then add water to create a very light foam. It doesn’t have much in terms of surfactants so it cleanses without stripping the skin or making it dry.

Ao Skincare Cleanser - PrepareAo Skincare Cleanser - PrepareThe ingredients include:

Pure New Zealand Artesian Water sourced from one of the purest places on earth; an aquifer beneath the ancient Kauri forests in the lush far north of New Zealand.

Totarol, an extract from the New Zealand Totara tree that contains powerful naturally sourced antioxidants which actively cleanse the skin.

Phormium Tenax (Harakeke) Seed Oil, a hydrating oil with omega-6 linoleic acid that helps repair the skin barrier.

Actinidia Chinensis (Kiwi) Seed Oil, with omega-3, alpha linolenic acid, which helps to maintain moisture in the skin and prevent drying and scaling.

I love this cleanser. It has no fragrance and it deep cleans beautifully. Although it has almost no foam after adding water, it does have enough slip to really work well with a device like the Clarisonic or the Luna. However, even just regular washing using hands gets a wonderful, somehow hydrating deep clean. In short, it’s great stuff.

Ao Skincare Serum - RestoreThe #4 Serum – Restore is a light serum that is full of peptides and vitamins that help repair, firm, and moisturize skin. Like the cleanser it is housed in an airless pump, which increases efficacy and longevity of the serum. (Why aren’t ALL skin care products packaged like this??)

The ingredients include:

Vitamins B3, B5 and C (Niacinamide, Panthenol, Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate) that work together as antioxidants to promote the appearance of firm skin.

Ferulic Acid, a powerful antioxidant, which also increases the stability and potency of vitamin C.

Peptides and Phenyl t-Butylnitrone (Spin Traps) – these diverse molecules perform multiple functions important for optimum skin health.

New Zealand Manuka Honey, which nourishes and draws precious moisture deep into the skin and encourages skin vitality.

Ao Skincare Restore SerumAo Skincare Restore SerumI’ve been using this serum in the morning before moisturizing and at night after cleansing and toning. It has no fragrance and sinks in nicely, leaving my skin moist but not wet. I don’t even feel like I need to use an eye cream at night. So far my skin has loved this serum and it looks terrific. This is one bottle of product that I will completely finish and I know I will be sad when it’s gone.

The other products available from Ao Skincare include #2 Day Treatment – Fortify, #3 SPF 30 Sunscreen, #5 Night Treatment – Repair, and #6 Retinol – Rewind. There is also an option to purchase the entire range (in pretty cool packaging!) for 20% off.
I am very impressed with the New Zealand way of doing skin care and I hope you will take a look!  – Lisa
*sent for editorial consideration

For a short video about Ao Skincare  Click here.

Discover the secret of silk in your skincare with Silkriller

Silkriller Silver Revitalization Set

Silkriller Silver Revitalization Set

I’ve been holding out on you. I was sent a set of the most luxurious Japanese skincare products and have been loving using them but I haven’t shared. I should know better than that but now that I’m ready you are going to need to make your holiday wishlist because Silkriller is a brand you will love using.

Silkriller Revitalization Skincare Set, Silver

Silkriller Revitalization Skincare Set, Silver

Silkriller is the only brand that contains a raw material “Silk Fibroin” which is made up of 18 kinds of amino acid. Silk is a treasured component in Japan as it is used to fight off bacteria, infectious skin disease, and reduce dark spots. I was thrilled from my first use especially since most Asian skincare is fragranced but Skillriller is non-fragranced and luxurious.

The Revitalization Set – Silver ($308) that I use contains 4 products. Each of Skillriller’s products are sold separately plus there’s a Revitalizaton Set – Gold.

Silkriller Facial Foam

Silkriller Facial Foam

Silkriller Facial Foam ($54) is especially good for combination skin but all skin types will enjoy this. Even though it’s called a foam it’s actually a creamy cleanser that barely foams up. It’s infused with natural honey, grapefruit and silk fibroin. It gives a slight firming sensation and it never feels like it’s drying out my skin. I feel like it’s made my skin a little more radiant too.

Silkriller Lotion

Silkriller Lotion

Silkriller Lotion ($76) is essentially an essence. It’s a water based beauty tonic that helps greatly if you have sensitive, weakened, or dry skin. I was surprised when I used it the first time to find that it was a clear product because of the name lotion. This absorbs so quickly so you don’t even realize that its rejuvenating and nourishing your skin. The amino acids will help those of you with acne scars. I pat this on with my hands until it’s fully absorbed. Silkriller calls this their Rejuvenating Beauty Tonic and I agree with that description.

Silkriller 3D Silver Pure Rich Gel

Silkriller 3D Silver Pure Rich Gel

Silkriller 3D Silver Pure Rich Gel ($86) is the premier product of this set. This anti-aging serum is in a pump glass bottle that I’m able to control so that I’m not getting too much out. I massage this onto my face and try very hard to remember to do that in an upward motion. I use this 2 – 3 times per week since it’s so concentrated. On those nights I’ll skip the Lotion. The gel is a fusion of their ancient recipe and modern technology. It’s a blend of silk fibroin and beauty essences. 3D Silver Pure Rich Gel isn’t heavy at all, it’s absorbed quickly and continues to strengthen collagen formation. While it’s not an eye cream or gel, it’s safe to use around your eyes especially wherever you have fine lines. It’s a gel meant to guard your skin from the environment and aging problems.

Silkriller Moisture Cream

Silkriller Moisture Cream

Silkriller Moisture Cream ($108) is a silky soft moisturizer that is a pleasure to use. It’s very lightweight and yet it’s so hydrating. It absorbs quickly and never interferes with my makeup. It’s very highly concentrated so even though it’s lightweight you’d never know you are getting so many benefits from it.

Silkriller Moisture Cream

Silkriller Moisture Cream

While it’s busy working to improve skin elasticity and refine skin radiance, it’s also regenerating skin cells. “Our exclusive and FDA registered moisturizer deeply hydrates your skin and does not contain any surfactants.” They are the only brand that doesn’t have any surfactants in their product. I love the feel and I love that fact that there is no scent whatsoever.

Silkriller is an investment but one of the best kinds since it’s protecting your face and helping to keep you looking more youthful. No matter how beautiful your makeup is, it all starts with your skin.  — Marcia

*sent for editorial consideration


Purifying inside and out with DermaE

DermaEI was recently sent a beautiful gift box full of all sorts of ‘good for you’ goodies. derma e’s National Educator, Jaime cane, did a wonderful job curating this box for ‘beauty gurus’.

There are lots of things we can do to feel great and look even better. This beauty box listed some important points: be sure to exfoliate so your skin care fully absorbs and works most effectively. Love your greens to stay  healthy on the inside. Stay hydrated by drinking lots of water – it helps keep the wrinkles away. And get 7 or 8 hours of sleep at night to prevent puffiness, acne breakouts, and premature aging.


Included in the box was an awesome derma e water bottle, some delicious Vita Coco Lemonade (soooo good!!) and some Green Superfood, which is a terrific way to get every bit of nutrition you need to stay looking and feeling healthy.

DermaE Purifying Gel Cleanser

Exfoliation is the best way to make sure all of your products are working as hard as possible. I really like derma e’s Purifying Gel Cleanser ($15.50) because it exfoliates so gently. I use my Luna cleansing brush with it no problem, and I think it would be perfect to use with a Clarisonic.  I have been working out like crazy this summer and I always wash my face with this when I get home because it is perfect for removing sweat, toxins, and bacteria.

This cleanser is pH balanced and has no fragrance or sulfates. Ingredients include these minerals and natural toxin fighters:

Kimarine® Wakame is a potassium-rich, magnesium-rich seaweed that is clinically proven to protect skin against environmental pollutants (exhaust fumes, cigarette smoke, heavy metals).

Bladderwrack is an antioxidant-rich, mineral-rich seaweed known for its water-binding properties, supporting healthy skin hydration and nourishment.

Activated Charcoal, known for absorbing 100 to 200 times its weight in impurities, helps thoroughly remove toxins from the skin’s surface.

Green Tea delivers potent antioxidant defense, and a base of Aloe Leaf Juice revives skin with fresh, healthy hydration. 

DermaE Purifying 2-in-1 Charcoal Mask

Once a week, I use the Purifying 2-in-1 Charcoal Mask ($19.50) for an even deeper clean. It detoxes skin in two ways:

(1) Natural clays infused with Kimarine® Wakame, Bladderwrack and Activated Charcoal lift out dirt, oil and bacteria to decongest pores as the mask dries

(2) Apricot Seed Powder exfoliates away dead skin cells and captured debris upon removal. Kaolin and Bentonite Clays absorb excess oils and impurities, relieving skin congestion.

With many of the same powerful ingredients as the Purifying Gel Cleanser, this treatment mask is the perfect complimentary deep clean.

DermaE Purifying Youth SerumWith skin clean and ready to make the most of any treatment, a great option is the Purifying Youth Serum ($29.50). Holy smokes is this good stuff! Awesome ingredients like Kimarine® Wakame,  Bladderwrack, and Green Tea together in an Aloe Leaf Juice Base makes for super healthy, glowy skin. It makes a great primer for foundation, too. And like all derma e products, it’s 100% vegan, cruelty-free, paraben-free, sulfate-free, mineral oil-free, lanolin-free, gluten-free, and GMO-free.

You can find these great products at Ulta and Whole Foods.  Pick them up and get healthy inside and out this summer!  – Lisa

*sent for editorial consideration, affiliate links

Peace, love, and great skin with The Organic Pharmacy

Organic Pharmacy
With the crazy circus of politics these days, simply scrolling through Facebook stresses me right into a horrible – and so ironic – combination of wrinkles and acne. So I step away from the media and step into some organic self-care to get back my peace and love vibe.


 The Organic Pharmacy was created by a homeopathic pharmacist. The first store opened in 2002 in London, with the first US store opening in Los Angeles in 2008. The array of products in this line is amazing – you can find skin care for every type of skin, body products for your head to your toes, bath soaks and shower gels, shampoos and conditioners, baby products, tinctures, homeopathic remedies…the list goes on and on. The Organic Pharmacy says, “We still stick with our strong principles and pride ourselves on the passion that we share for quality, efficacy and above all a dedication to you. We hope that we have shown the world it is possible to choose an organic product that is beautiful to look at, luxurious to use and more effective than its synthetic counterparts without compromising your health or beauty.”

I haven’t tried anything from them yet that I didn’t think was terrific and I have four favorites to share with you today in the spirit of positivity!
Organic Pharmacy Herbal Toner
The Herbal Toner ($65) is fabulous. I use this as a toner, and also as a spritz of moisture that is especially wonderful on hot, sunny days. It has 18 organic herbs that work together to keep skin healthy. It reduces pore size while also lifting and hydrating skin. It smells like fresh oranges, which is an instant relaxer and de-stresser.  

Organic Pharmacy Carrot Butter CleanserOrganic Pharmacy Carrot Butter Cleanser

The Carrot Butter Cleanser ($74) is a very unique cleanser. This is a balm that melts right into your skin, lifting makeup and dirt right out of your life. No need for a separate eye makeup remover either, because it melts off even the smokiest of eyes.  

Infused with Rosemary, Carrot and Shea Butter, the skin is left comfortable, incredibly soft and radiant. Chamomile and Lavender soothe and calm both skin and mind.

Once you smooth on the balm, you wipe it off using a hot, wet muslin cloth. The results are awesome – clean, glowy, hydrated skin. The Carrot Butter Cleanser is one of The Organic Pharmacy’s best-selling products and it should be on your list to try.

Organic Pharmacy Lip and Eye CreamOrganic Pharmacy Lip and Eye Cream

I also love the Lip & Eye Cream ($48). This is a beautiful cream that soothes skin, reduces puffiness, and lightens dark circles. Because it’s hydrating, it reduces the look of fine lines and makes for a wonderful lip moisturizer. The ingredient list includes Shea butter, bilberry, evening primrose, rose hip and frankincense. I pat some on under my eyes, then use what’s left over on the sides of mouth and on my lips. You really only need a teensy amount so the tube lasts forever. 

Organic Pharmacy Antioxidant Lip BalmOrganic Pharmacy Antioxidant Lip Balm

I can’t rave enough about the Antioxidant Lip Balm ($21.50). I love, love, love this beautiful balm. Ingredients include Shea Butter, pomegranate, rose hip and Vitamin E. The balm leaves my lips so soft and hydrated thanks to the Shea butter and Vitamin E. The pomegranate and rose hip are excellent antioxidants that fight free radicals while also calming and soothing dry or cracked lips. This balm is the bomb.

It’s getting pretty crazy and very stressful out there. Be sure to take care of yourself. The Organic Pharmacy is a great way to get some peace, love, and great skin.  – Lisa

*sent for editorial consideration, affliate links

Bioderma’s 3 Micellar Water formulas wow me

Bioderma Micellar Waters

Bioderma Micellar Waters

You’ve probably read about Micellar Water many times but if you are like me then you don’t quite understand exactly what it is and how it does its magic. Without going into too much detail a micellar water contains micelle cleansing molecules that pull away dirt and oil. Put it on a disposable cotton pad and wipe your face with it. A good micellar water won’t feel tacky nor will it need rinsing. Your makeup will be removed without any harshness.

I’ve been a fan of Bioderma Micellar Water since Beautylish finally started carrying it. Up until these samples were sent, I only bought Sensibio H2O and I’ve bought a lot of it. I’ve been thrilled with the chance to learn about two other micelle solutions from Bioderma: Hydrabio H2O and Sebium H2O.

Bioderma Sensibio H20 Make-up removing micelle solution, sensitive skin

Bioderma Sensibio H20 Make-up removing micelle solution, sensitive skin

After having the chance to try all three I’ve realized that I made the right choice when I bought Sensibio H2O. It’s the one made for sensitive skin and the one that I personally think will suit almost everyone. This is fragrance free while the other two have a slight fragrance to them. It’s so gentle on my skin and removes my makeup well. I can use it on my eyes too but if I’ve got a lot of mascara on then I’m really better off using a separate eye makeup remover.

Bioderma Sensibio H2O (also known as Créaline H2O) is a no-rinse micellar cleanser and makeup remover specially formulated for sensitive, normal to dry skin types. It can even remove water-resistant face and eye makeup! A soothing emollient thanks to cucumber extract, it clears up irritated skin and produces a feeling of instant freshness. Fragrance-free, alcohol-free, paraben-free, and hypoallergenic.

Bioderma Sensibio H2O in 500 ml, 250 ml, and 100 ml

Bioderma Sensibio H2O in 500 ml, 250 ml, and 100 ml

How do you know if you have sensitive skin to choose Sensiblo H2O?  If your skin becomes dehydrated easily and that dryness leads to a tight feeling, that’s sensitive skin. Most of us think of sensitive skin as being reactive to ingredients, and it often is, but it’s also from dryness according to Bioderma. Sensibio products are suitable for all sensitive and reactive skin types.

Bioderma Sensibio H2O is available in 100ml, 250 ml, and 500 ml bottles. I’ve taken the 100 ml bottle on trips and I buy the 500 ml size for home use. Occasionally Beautylish will carry the 500 ml bottle with a pump top that makes it even easier to use.

pump top on Bioderma Sensibio H2O

pump top on Bioderma Sensibio H2O

Hydrabio H2O is also a great choice for me and the one I’ll use more this coming winter. It was created for sensitive, dehydrated skin. In the winter the elements make my skin even more dry and dehydrated so while this works well in summer, it’s going to be the perfect solution for winter.

What makes this a little different is that Hydrabio H2O contains Aquagenium , an exclusive biological patent retrains the skin to activate its natural moisturising capacities by stimulating the production of aquaporins, water channels in the skin, and retain the water it needs to be balanced.

Bioderma Hydrabio H2O

Bioderma Hydrabio H2O

regular top for Bioderma Micellar Water

regular top for Bioderma Micellar Water

Hydrabio H2O has a light fragrance to it. I don’t find it lingers and only notice it when I’m first using it for removal. It too is non-comedogenic, alcohol-free, and hypoallergenic. This is an excellent choice for fragile sensitive skin since it stimulates moisture.

The third choice is Sebium H2O, a micellar water that is recommended for combination or oily skin. If you have pores that become clogged or have breakouts you want Sebium H2O in your repertoire. It contains Fluidactiva patented sebo-correcting complex, it biologically regulates sebum quality to keep the pores from becoming clogged and clear up the skin.

Bioderma Sebium H2O

Bioderma Sebium H2O

Other ingredients that help purify skin and limit sebaceous secretion are zinc gluconate and copper sulphate. Sebioum H2O is hypoallergenic, paraben free, alcohol free, and soap free. There is no coloring in spite of the light blue shade. The light fragrance is a bit medicinal but it doesn’t linger.

Prices on the Bioderma Micellar Waters found at Beautylish are very reasonable with 100 ml costing $6.90, 250 ml costing $11.90, and 500 ml priced at $16.90. They aren’t refillable so I usually buy several at a time so that I have this on hand. Sensiblo H2O is definitely my favorite but what about you? Which one would you feel is best for your skintype?  —  Marcia

*sent for editorial consideration, purchases, affiliate links




Makeup Wars – let’s remove that makeup with DHC Deep Cleansing Oil

This week’s Makeup Wars is about Waterproof makeup and makeup removers. Since I don’t have anything that’s remotely new in the world of waterproof makeup I decided to write about the cleansers in my life and in particular my newest favorite, DHC Deep Cleansing Oil.

DHC Cleansing Oil

DHC Cleansing Oil

pr sample

If you are keeping up with the latest in skincare then you already know that Asian skincare, in particular Japanese, is storming the market. DHC isn’t a new company but it is an extremely popular one. I’m a huge fan of their products, especially the Silky Cotton Squares which I buy in bulk.

The vision behind DHC is rooted in the beneficial properties of virgin olive oil. Found to be one of nature’s finest ingredients for helping to achieve and maintain healthy, younger-looking skin, olive oil became the foundation for DHC’s full line of skin-gentle products.

Japanese products based on Spanish olive oil? It doesn’t get more unique than that. We think our mixed-culture heritage is right at home in the United States, where individual tastes and preferences are celebrated.


DHC Deep Cleansing Oil

DHC Deep Cleansing Oil

DHC Deep Cleansing Oil is a makeup remover for your face and can be used on your eyes. It’s the only cleansing oil that I’ve found actually removes the coats of mascara I use along with my eyeliner and doesn’t sting my eyes. I was wary of using it on my eyes at first so I just used it on my face. It did such a remarkable job that I became brave and used it to remove eye makeup too.

DHC Deep Cleansing Oil directions

DHC Deep Cleansing Oil directions

The way you use this is to start with everything DRY. Your hands should be dry when you pump out the remover and your face should be dry when you apply it. The next step is to massage it onto your dry face and let it start working to remove your cosmetic residue. Next add water and watch it transform to a a milky emulsion. This rinses off cleanly and easily whether you just use water or a wash cloth.

What you are left with is a soft, hydrated feeling. It’s not dry, it’s not greasy. I don’t need to double cleanse when I’m using DHC Deep Cleansing Oil since this does everything in one step. That doesn’t mean I don’t double cleanse at times especially because I like exfoliating with a sonic cleansing machine like Instrumental Beauty Sonic Touch or the Michael Todd Soniclear Elite.

DHC Deep Cleansing Oil ingredient list

DHC Deep Cleansing Oil ingredient list

  • In a clinical study, 92% of participants agreed Deep Cleansing Oil worked better than a leading cleanser at removing complexion makeup
  • Unique water-soluble formula rinses thoroughly
  • Rich in vitamins and antioxidants
  • Nourishes and hydrates for younger-looking skin
  • 1 sold every 10 seconds worldwide

The DHC Deep Cleansing Oil is the world’s most popular product in its category. There’s no fragrance to it, it’s easy to get through Amazon or DHC’s website, and it works amazingly well. It’s one stop shopping. From now until July 31, 2017 they even have a fabulous special on DHC. If you are a new customer to DHC then you can buy this for half off, get 4 samples, and free shipping. That’s a total bargain and makes me wish I was new to DHC myself.

Other cleansers in my life at the current time (things change constantly) include


CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser

CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser


Paula's Choice Resist Optimal Results Hydrating Cleanser and Resist Advanced Replenishing Toner

Paula’s Choice Resist Optimal Results Hydrating Cleanser and Resist Advanced Replenishing Toner


Osmosis Melt Away Gelee

Osmosis Melt Away Gelee


Mary Kay Eye makeup Remover

Mary Kay Eye makeup Remover

While DHC Cleansing Oil may be the new kid on my block it’s won me over and can play here any time it wants.  —  Marcia

Let’s see what other Makeup Wars bloggers have to say about this topic!

*some products sent for review, some were purchases