Getting in the holiday groove with Glossybox December 2014 Subscription Box

Glossybox 2014 DecemberDecember is the holiday month and the December Glossybox has everything you need to be party ready. The Glossybox Subscription Box is $21 a month (or you can save more with a 3-month, 6-month or annual subscription.) Each box has a combination of deluxe and full size beauty products and the box that Glossybox sent to us for review this month is pretty impressive.

Glossybox 2014 December packaging

It only makes sense that the December Glossybox has a holiday theme. I adore the packaging, it is just beautiful. The box is adorable as well as sturdy and will definitely find its way under my tree this year. Once that gift is opened, I am taking my box back to reuse it again next year!

Glossybox 2014 December Subscription Box

Glossybox 2014 December Subscription Box

Four of the five items in this month’s box are full size, with a combined value of $94…pretty awesome for a $21 box. The products in the December Box are what you need for soft hands, skin, and hair, plus fabulously festive lips and nails.

Glossybox 2014 December Subscription Box takes care of skin, hair, and hands!

Glossybox 2014 December Subscription Box takes care of skin, hair, and hands!

Ritual Cosmetics Miracle Scrub in Ginseng & Ginko Biloba (full size, retails for $17):  I am so bad about wearing gloves…my hands always need a serious intervention. This is a scrub for hands (too fragranced for your face!) that does a wonderful job of leaving them soft and lightly scented.

Toni & Guy Prep Leave-In Conditioner (full size, retails for $17):  I have loved this conditioner for years because it gets rid of frizz and still leaves my hair bouncy. Most leave-ins are too heavy for my fine hair, but this stuff is the bomb.

NUXE Masque Creme Fraiche de Beaute (full size, retails for $32):  This mask has the most beautiful citrus scent, one that is light enough to work for skin care. It’s really amazing for dry, dehydrated winter skin. Great for after long holiday flights, too!

Holiday color in the Glossybox 2014 December Subscription Box

Holiday color in the Glossybox 2014 December Subscription Box

Bellapierre Cosmetics Mineral Lipstick in Burlesque (full size, retails for $20):  I only recently discovered the awesomeness that is Bellapierre Cosmetics – I reviewed the 5-in-1 Mineral Foundation HERE and the Mineral Blush, Lipstick, and Nail Polish HERE. The lipstick has natural waxes and mineral pigments, iron oxides and antioxidants including Vitamin C and Vitamin E. It is a creamy, smooth, highly pigmented lipstick. Burlesque is a fuchsia pink, but don’t let that scare you – this is a very wearable, festive pink that is party perfect.

Ciate Mini Nail Polish in All Aglow ($8)  I love mini nail polishes, and this one just screams ‘holiday’.  All Aglow is a golden shimmer with flecks of red – major holiday glam over a matte black polish!

The December Glossybox is a winner. Four great full size products plus a super cute mini, with a combined value that is over $70 more than what you pay for it. Gift yourself one of these before they are all sold out!! – Lisa

*sent for editorial consideration

*sent for editorial consideration 

Get some Goody hair accessories for the good girls on your list!

Goody Holiday Collection
My girls have been very, very good this year, so it only makes sense to put some Goody in their stockings!  They sent us a few items from the new Holiday Collection and these hair accessories are super cute.  The Holiday Collection features jewel tones that are fun and festive, and you can find all the items at Meijer.

Goody Holiday Collection Ouchless Black and Multiglitter Elastics

Goody Holiday Collection Ouchless Black and Multiglitter Elastics

Hair elastics are a basic item that every girl needs, and the Goody Holiday Collection features great sets with bonuses!  The Ouchless Black Elastics ($4.99) come with 30 black elastics that won’t snag or break hair, plus four jewel tone glitter elastics for some bling.  My girls like to use a black elastic to secure their hair, then layer with different multicolor elastics for style.  If your girl uses more multiglitter than black, just get the reverse set – Ouchless Multiglitter Elastics ($4.99) with a bonus four black elastics.

Goody Holiday Collection Ouchless Multiglitter Headwraps and Ribbon Elastics

Goody Holiday Collection Ouchless Multiglitter Headwraps and Ribbon Elastics

My youngest daughter is a fencer, so she needs headbands that keep her bangs out of her eyes, especially when wearing her fencing mask.  The Ouchless Multiglitter Headwraps ($3.99) do the job and don’t get all tangled up in her hair.  These are also a great choice for some color with updos and braids.  Another favorite are the Ouchless Ribbon Elastics.  Every night, I put my daughter’s wet hair in a braid and wrap the end with a Ouchless Ribbon Elastic.  The ribbon is strong enough to keep the braid in place as she sleeps, but soft enough not to crease her hair.  In the morning we take out the braid and she has beautiful waves that last all day.  Plus, she keeps a couple on her wrist like a bracelet, and uses them whenever she wants to put her hair back.

Goody Holiday Collection Purse Brush and FashioNow Flower Salon Clips

Goody Holiday Collection Purse Brush and FashioNow Flower Salon Clips

I just love the FashioNow Flower Salon Clips ($4.99)!  They are darling, and the colors are so cheerful.  Each clip comes with 5 bonus elastics so you can put in a ponytail then add the clip for style.  For a really neat gift, add in a matching jewel-toned Purse Brush ($4.99).  This little brush is the perfect size, and it comes with a bonus ribbon elastic.

Reward the good girls in your life with some Goody good stuff, for goodness sake!  These cute and cool accessories are just waiting for you at your local Meijers.  – Lisa

*sent for editorial consideration

ECRU New York Acacia line review and giveaway

Over the last almost 3 months I haven’t been able to control a lot in my life. But happily I have been able to control what I’ve used on my hair. There are two different lines that I used exclusively for the last few months and I’m here to not only share ECRU New York with you but to offer a giveaway for my favorite product in the line.

In the summer ECRU New York sent some of their Acacia line of products. The shampoo and conditioner went right into my shower while the BB Protein Cream went on my vanity.

ECRU New York was created to “Treat and Perform”. Silk proteins are used in every product within the collection because they strengthen and improve the integrity of the hair.

What are Silk Proteins? According to ECRU they are the highest grade protein ingredients created from the hydrolysis of silk fibers. The inner part of silk is removed by this hydrolysis. It’s been used in high grade skincare for years but research found that these silk proteins formed a protective film that sealed the hair. The result is a hair cuticle with increased elasticity, beautiful shine and protection from damage.

The products I’ve been using are from the Acacia Protein Collection. They consist of a shampoo, conditioner, BB Cream, masque and oil. Today I bring you the shampoo, conditioner and BB cream.

ECRU New York Acacia Protein Shampoo and Conditioner are both safe for color treated hair, hair that has had processes done to it (like a keratin straightening), and are paraban free. The shampoo contains Acacia Collagen™, Hydrolyzed Keratin, Wheat Protein, Panthenol, and Sunflower Extract. It is extremely moisturizing and leaves my hair soft and shiny. It washes out easily even when I am just standing on one foot at my kitchen sink. The conditioner contains similar but enhanced ingredients, Acacia Collagen™, Wheat Amino Acids, Hydrolyzed Keratin, Wheat Protein, and Safflower Seed Oil, and leaves my hair feeling protected. One claim is that it helps mend split ends, I don’t agree or disagree with that statement since I haven’t seen proof of that in my own life. These two products keep my hair so well moisturized that I don’t notice split ends occuring.

ECRU New York Acacia Protein Shampoo

ECRU New York Acacia Protein Shampoo

ECRU New York Acacia Protein Conditioner

ECRU New York Acacia Protein Conditioner

The other product is one I mentioned in an Ipsy review since I received a travel size one in my last Ipsy bag. I was thrilled and started using it right away since I wasn’t able to go upstairs to get my full size one. This is the Acacia Protein BB Cream which is my favorite of these three products. This is a styling cream that is both lightweight and easy to use. I don’t notice fragrance in any of these products when I use them but if there is fragrance then it’s just light and refreshing. The Protein BB Cream contains Acacia Collagen™, Hydrolyzed Silk Protein, Silk Amino Acids, Jojoba Oil and Monoi Oil. These excellent ingredients are what makes this BB Cream so special. I like to use this on my towel dried hair prior to blow drying. I can comb through my hair with ease and this is helping protect it from the heat of my appliances.

ECRU New York Acacia Protein BB Cream

ECRU New York Acacia Protein BB Cream

We were sent an extra ECRU New York Protein BB Cream and are happy to have this as a giveaway for one of our readers. I’m sure you’ll love it as much as I do since I know we all care so much about the way our hair looks.  The giveaway is open for US and Canada only through 11/15/14.  — Marcia

*sent for editorial consideration.  You can find ECRU New York on their website as well as on BeautyBar which has free shipping.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Drug store hair care finds for fine, flat hair: Dove Dry Shampoo and Oxygen Moisture Leave In Foam

I have very fine, flat hair.  It takes great products to make it look good.  Want proof?  Here I am on a bad hair day – meaning this is what my hair ‘naturally’ looks like:

Fine, flat hair is not so fine to have.

Fine, flat hair is not so fine to have.

Finding great hair styling products for fine, flat hair is not an easy task.  Products that work miracles on normal or thick hair leave fine hair limp and greasy looking.  Or, products that do give fine hair volume make it dry and crunchy.  The good news is help for fine hair is right at the drug store, and the price is fantastic.  Dove sent me their Refresh + Care Dry Shampoo ($3.76) and Oxygen Moisture Leave In Foam ($5.99) to test, and my hair was very, very happy.

Dove Dry Shampoo

Dove Dry Shampoo

The Refresh + Care Dry Shampoo does everything a good dry shampoo should do…it absorbs oil, makes dirty hair look clean, gives texture and volume.  It also has a very, very strong fragrance.  If your hair smells dirty, like cigarette smoke from the bar or car fumes from tailgating, the fragrance will cover that up in a jiffy.  However, if you are sensitive to fragrance, this is definitely NOT the dry shampoo for you.

Dove Dry Shampoo

Dove Dry Shampoo

It has a very powerful aerosol spray that doesn’t leave any white residue behind.  The trick is to spray it about 10 inches away from roots, then rub it in lightly and brush.  It’s a great product for those with fine or flat hair because it gives lots of volume without the heaviness and stiffness that dry shampoos can leave behind.  If it weren’t for the extremely strong fragrance, I would put this at the top of my dry shampoo list.

Dove Oxygen Moisture Leave In Foam

Dove Oxygen Moisture Leave In Foam

Dove Oxygen Moisture Leave In Foam, perfect for fine hair

Dove Oxygen Moisture Leave In Foam, perfect for fine hair

The Oxygen Moisture Leave In Foam is a styling mousse specifically for fine, flat hair.  While this is also fragranced, it has a very light fresh scent.  Only those most sensitive to fragrance would be bothered by it.

Dove Oxygen Moisture Leave In Foam

Dove Oxygen Moisture Leave In Foam

Most hair foams weigh fine down and kill any attempts at volume.  But the Oxygen Moisture Leave In Foam is a wonder, leaving my hair soft, full, and shiny.  After towel drying, I apply two to three pumps to my long hair (it’s about mid-back length) concentrating on the roots and then lightly finger-combing through the length of my hair.  It detangles, conditions, and adds lots of volume that lasts throughout the day.

My Dove hair

My happy Dove hair

If you don’t mind the strong scent, Dove Refresh + Care Dry Shampoo is a wonderful way to give fine hair volume and texture, not to mention getting extra mileage from your last shampoo.  Dove Moisture Leave In Foam is a winner on all counts; anyone with fine hair should give it a try.  At these prices, everyone can afford to take a hair care trip to the drug store.  – Lisa

*sent for editorial consideration

Dove Dry Shampoo ingredients:  Isobutane, Propane, SD Alcohol 40-B (Alcohol Denat.), Aluminum Starch Octenylsuccinate, Butane, Fragrance (Parfum), Isopropyl Myristate, Silica, Cyclopentasiloxane.

Oxygen Moisture Leave In Foam ingredients:  Water (Aqua), Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Sodium Chloride, Glycerin, Fragrance (Parfum), Dimethiconol, Glycol Distearate, Carbomer, TEA-Dodecylbenzenesulfonate, Citric Acid, Guar Hydroxypropyltrimonium Chloride, Tetrasodium EDTA, DMDM Hydantoin, Gluconolactone, PEG-45M, Benzophenone-4, Adipic Acid, Trehalose, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone, PPG-9, Mica (CI 77019), Titanium Dioxide, (CI 77891).

The Christie Brinkley Collection Hair Wrap from Hair2Wear

Remember when hair pieces were a luxury that required lots of time and lots of money? All those combs meant you needed to have the piece put on by a professional or else risk looking completely ridiculous. Now, however, hair pieces are super easy to put on and are quite inexpensive. A perfect example is the Hair2Wear Christie Brinkley Collection Hair Wrap ($16) that was sent to us.

Hair2Wear Bun Wrap

Hair2Wear Natural Tone Hair Wrap

Christie models perfectly, as usual

Christie models perfectly, as usual

Christie Brinkley has a very cute collection of hair pieces including four different types of hair headbands. She also offers the Hair Wrap, which fills out a bun and makes it look beautiful. It could not be easier – put your hair in a bun, then slip this around and voila!  Instant elegance.

My shade is Medium Brown

My shade is Medium Brown

The shade I have is Medium Brown and it is very pretty. I love the golden highlights because they make the wrap look just like real hair.  I have long hair, but it’s quite fine so my bun can always use a little pizzaz. This wrap isn’t super smooth, it kind of fans out so it gives a slightly messy, but much more voluptuous bun. This would also be great for someone with shoulder length hair who wants to do a quick bun or chignon.

side view

side view

another side view

another side view

The Hair2Wear Hair Wrap

The Hair2Wear Hair Wrap

There is a quote from Christie on the box, it says, “I love this wrap — it’s both current and classic, and always so flattering. Wear it with bangs or without. My guilty secret? I don’t even have to blow dry my hair first for it to look great.” And by golly, she is right. The Hair Wrap is especially terrific for disguising less-than-clean hair.

Take a look at her collection HERE. The headbands are only $10 each and the Hair Wrap is just $16. It is definitely worth it!  – Lisa

*sent for editorial consideration

Three fabulous summer finds for hair, skin, and lips

When I am out and about on a summer day, I need three things:  something cute to keep my hair up and out of my face, a sheer foundation with SPF protection to keep my skin looking great, and a kick-butt lip gloss to brighten my look.  Here’s my trio of fun, fashionable, and fantastic summer must-haves we were sent that I love for this season.

Three summer must haves:  Lumene BB Cream, Scunci Bun Wrap, and Smashbox Be Legendary Lipgloss in Azalea

Three summer must haves: Lumene BB Cream, Scunci Bun Wrap, and Smashbox Be Legendary Lip gloss in Azalea

Since I have long hair, I am always searching for something cute when it gets hot and I need to get my hair up off my neck.  A hair accessory as tiny as the Scunci Bun Wrap suddenly becomes essential.

Scunci Bun Wrap

Scunci Bun Wrap

Wrap your style!

Wrap your style!

being a bun head with my Scunci

being a bun head with my Scunci

Could that blue with white polka dot print be any more adorable?  It looks totally picnic ready.  The Scunci Bun Wrap is actually a wire encased in a pretty, gauzy fabric.  It easily wraps around any ponytail or bun and looks fabulous, even if you are as klutsy as me with hair.  These cute little wraps are found in drugstores like Walgreens or Walmart.

Lumene Bright Now Vitamin C BB Cream SPF 20

Lumene Bright Now Vitamin C BB Cream SPF 20

Lumene Bright Now Vitamin C BB Cream in 01 Light

Lumene Bright Now Vitamin C BB Cream in 01 Light

As you can see, the Lumene Bright Now Vitamin C BB Cream in Light is actually more of a medium shade…unfortunately I don’t think those of you with very pale skin will be able to use this.  (It only comes in two shades, Light and Medium.)  But for the rest of us — hooray!  It luminizes, evens skin tone, and protects from UV rays.  I also find it to be incredibly forgiving.  I slap this on using my fingers and it looks great every time.  It is awesome.

Smashbox Be Legendary Lip Gloss in Azalea

Smashbox Be Legendary Lip Gloss in Azalea

Smashbox Be Legendary Lip Gloss in Azalea

Smashbox Be Legendary Lip Gloss in Azalea

swatch of Azalea

swatch of Azalea

The new Smashbox Be Legendary Lip Gloss ($20) lives up to its name – this really is some legendary lip gloss.  If you are a lip gloss girl, get yourself several of these STAT.  The formula is incredibly moisturizing and silky, and it lasts longer than any other typical lip gloss I have tried.  I think the shade Azalea is the quintessential summer color.  Azalea is a bright melon pink that is very flattering and so wearable.  It keeps its shine and has a great slip without any stickiness whatsoever.  Be Legendary Lip Gloss comes in 16 different shades, but my recommendation is to make Azalea your first one!

wearing Lumene BB Cream and Smashbox Azalea

wearing Lumene BB Cream and Smashbox Azalea

My Scunci Bun Wrap, Lumene BB Cream, and Smashbox Azalea Lip Gloss make up my summer superhero trio.  What products make your list?  – Lisa

 *sent for editorial consideration

Gray roots begone! Everpro Beauty Gray Away

So who gets their hair colored?

Raised hands

Yeah, me too. I have been getting my colored – and to cover the gray, mind you, not just for fashion – since I was 17 years old. My hair grows super fast so that means I need something to cover my roots in between trips to the salon.

Everpro Gray Away 3

For years I have used Bumble and Bumble Brown Hair Powder ($36 for 4.4 oz). It’s a spray-on colored hair powder and it works. It covers the gray. It’s not perfect though. The brown is quite intense so it makes me look like I don’t even have a natural part – which sort of makes my hair look like it’s a wig. Also, the powder is messy. If I scratch my head, my fingernails are brown. It smears onto my pillow at night. It’s also expensive and not easy to find. So when Everpro Beauty offered to send us their Gray Away Temporary Root Color ($12.99) to test, I was very happy to try what I hoped would be a better alternative.

Everpro

Everpro Beauty Gray Away Temporary Root Concealer

three different shades

matches these hair colors

First selling point for me:  Gray Away is inexpensive and it’s easy to find. It is available at CVS, Walgreens, Walmart, Rite Aid, and Bed Bath and Beyond.

It comes in two different shades. I use the Light Brown, which matches my hair perfectly. If you aren’t sure which shade is right for you, go for the lighter shade rather than the darker one.

cool applicator

fantastic thin applicator

The applicator is a very thin spray wand, much different from the larger sprayer I was used to using. This means greater control and less color on areas you don’t want covered, like your natural part. The spray itself is mineral-derived pigment which means it is safe for everyone to use, even pregnant women. Plus it dries very quickly. It will come off if you rub or scratch your head, but not nearly as noticeably as with the Bumble and Bumble.

Just shake the can, then spray on dry roots. It takes seconds for all that gray to disappear! The color is temporary and easily washes out with your next shampoo.

before...

before…

...after!

…after!

This is an absolute winner of a product! With up to 40 applications in one bottle it is a wonderfully affordable way to stretch out the time between your salon visits. I love it. Everpro Beauty Gray Away is the only root concealer I am buying from now on.  – Lisa

*sent for editorial consideration