Makeup Wars is all about hair – Living Proof and Brazilian Blowout Acai are my choices

We are a confusing bunch around here. Last week for Top Ten Beauty we talked about hair and this week for Makeup Wars we are also talking about hair. I’m actually glad because I mixed them up and now I get to add more hair products that I use all the time.

Brazilian Blowout Acai and Living Proof NoFrizz

Brazilian Blowout Acai and Living Proof NoFrizz

First thing to know about me is that I get my hair professionally straightened. I recently had another Brazilian Blowout procedure done, at least my 6th one. At the present time I’m only using the Acai line made by Brazilian Blowout but that will change in about a month. Prior to that I was using Pai-Shau and Living Proof. There are two things that you need to make sure are absent from your hair products whenever you have it straightened: they must be sulfate-free and have no sodium chloride. The sodium pulls the straightening out of your hair so that it doesn’t last. I watch for that in all products I use but especially during the first 6 weeks after a treatment.

Brazilian Blowout Acai products

Brazilian Blowout Acai products

Brazilian Blowout Acai products are specially formulated for a keratin treatment. They are the aftercare regimen developed to extend the life of your Brazilian Blowout Professional Smoothing Treatment. Even if you have another brand of treatment done, I’d still recommend these products since they do the job they are formulated to do: keep your hair straight, frizz free, smooth and silky looking.

Both the shampoo and conditioner are products I’d use 365 days a year. I find they keep my hair from drying out. My hair retains moisture because they contain smoothing proteins that fortify and seal the cuticle.

Brazilian Blowout Acai Anti-Frizz Shampoo and Condtioner

Brazilian Blowout Acai Anti-Frizz Shampoo and Conditioner

Brazilian Blowout Acai Anti-Frizz Shampoo and Condtioner

Brazilian Blowout Acai Anti-Frizz Shampoo and Conditioner

The conditioner provides UVA/UVB protection and is safe for color-treated hair. This is a mild everyday conditioner that glides through my hair.

All the Brazilian Blowout Acai products have a light citrus fragrance that doesn’t linger but I’d love it if it did since it’s so pleasant.

Brazilian Blowout Acai Deep Conditioning Masque

Brazilian Blowout Acai Deep Conditioning Masque

The Brazilian Blowout Acai Deep Conditioning Masque is to be used approximately once a week. My hair is shorter now than when I first started having my hair straightened so I find I only need this about every 10 days. My hairdresser swears by the Deep Conditioning Masque and uses it instead of the conditioner. She has beautiful thick hair that always looks lustrous and healthy. This masque not only smoothes and conditions, it promotes shine while also infusing moisture in your hair. The masque is what’s going to help with the longevity of a keratin treatment.

Acai Daily Smoothing Serum

Acai Daily Smoothing Serum

Brazilian Blowout has created several products to help style your hair. My favorite of these is the Acai Daily Smoothing Serum. I always have to put in a styling product before I brush through my wet hair and this one is great. It’s clear and not too thick, has that luscious citrus scent, and helps detangle my wet hair. This is what keeps my hair looking shiny and fights the humidity.

I’ve repurchased these products over and over. I use Amazon since I save a bundle over what my hair salon sells it for. My Deep Conditioning Masque is the newest of my replacement products so it has the new packaging.

Living Proof No Frizz

Living Proof No Frizz

Another brand that I’m crazy about is Living Proof. I use the FRIZZ line which is the No Frizz line. Sephora had several samples available of Living Proof so I took advantage of those to see what I thought of the line. Once I got the samples of No Frizz Shampoo and Conditioner, I was sold. Living Proof is available at Ulta, Sephora and Amazon but I find that the prices on Amazon are much better so that’s where my replacements will come from. And I will replace these products since they’ve giving me living proof that they work well.

Living Proof No Frizz Shampoo

Living Proof No Frizz Shampoo

Living Proof No Frizz information

Living Proof No Frizz information

Both Living Proof FRIZZ shampoo and conditioner sold me when I saw that they were color safe, sulfate-free, and contained no heavy silicones or oils. I can add an oil I like when styling but that’s my choice.The first new anti-frizz technology in over 30 years, it does what silicones can’t; eliminate frizz by blocking humidity-without weighing hair down.” This shampoo’s key ingredient is PolyfluoroEster which creates an invisible shield on the hair to lock in moisture-proof smoothness and repel dirt and oil, so you can go longer between washes to break the frizz and damage cycle.

Living Proof No Frizz Nourishing Styling Cream

Living Proof No Frizz Nourishing Styling Cream

I chose to buy Living Proof No Frizz Nourishing Styling Cream as the product to use after washing my hair. I always need something to comb through so I’ll be tangle free. While it’s more expensive than their Frizz Leave In Conditioner, it has more benefits.

No Frizz derives performance from Living Proof’s “miracle molecule,” PolyfluoroEster, to create a weightless shield on hair that blocks humidity absorption, smooths the cuticle, and repels dirt. The PolyfluoroEster shield is established over the first five uses of the No Frizz regimen, so it becomes stronger, the longer you use it—and can be maintained with consistent use of No Frizz products.

That’s the reason I chose the Nourishing Styling Cream. I need so little that it doesn’t matter that it’s a little more money. Plus it really works. In the winter when I knew I was coming towards the end of my treatment, this is what kept my hair from misbehaving.

In the future I’ll be exploring more from Living Proof. I actually have a travel set of A Perfect Day that I will break into in the future. Until then I plan to continue my FRIZZ routine.

What’s your haircare regimen? Do you use styling products? —  Marcia

Let’s learn more about haircare from the Makeup Wars bloggers


All products were purchased by me. Affiliate links have been used

 

Makeup Wars loves spring nail polish shades

A topic after my heart! Nail polish. I love nail polish and have a collection that’s growing by leaps and bounds. Spring and summer shades are ones I can’t get enough of. This year I seem to be enamored with pink – all shades of pink. Last year it was blue but this year it’s all about the pink although I’ll let a few more shades creep in since I like to wear a new color every week. Three brands are making the grade for me lately: Trust Fund Beauty *, Nine Zero lacquer, and Formula X from Sephora.

TRUST FUND BEAUTY: Dirty Thoughts, Do U Know Who My Father Is?, Should Come with a Warning

TRUST FUND BEAUTY: Dirty Thoughts, Do U Know Who My Father Is?, Should Come with a Warning

TRUST FUND BEAUTY is a brand that is 7 Free as well as being Vegan and Cruelty-Free. You won’t find toulene, formaldehyde, lead, nickel, phthlates, and other toxic ingredients. There are dozens of gorgeous polishes that cost between $12 and $15. It’s an indie company that you can be excited about purchasing from. The brand is only 2 years old and was created by a woman who launched the line in honor of her mother. I was sent 3 polishes and have worn two for a full week each. They are not only beautiful on my nails but even after a full week there were no signs of being ready for removal.

TRUST FUND BEAUTY Do U Know Who My Father Is?

TRUST FUND BEAUTY Do U Know Who My Father Is?

Do U Know Who My Father Is? is the perfect pink for spring and summer. It’s a clean refreshing cream shade that covers in two coats without any visible nail lines. They describe the shade as a ‘dusty medium pink’. I didn’t feel the dustiness in it, I just felt it was a perfect spring pink that I’ll love wearing over and over.

TRUST FUND BEAUTY Dirty Thoughts

TRUST FUND BEAUTY Dirty Thoughts

Dirty Thoughts ($15) doesn’t appear to be a spring/summer shade but it’s actually perfect. Trust Fund Beauty describes it as ‘An opaque purple-copper with tiny multi-colored glitter”. I’m not seeing the purple but I’m seeing a lot of the glitter. This isn’t brazen even though it has so much gold in it. I really love wearing this one even though I had to work a little harder to remove it.

TRUST FUND BEAUTY: Dirty Thoughts, Do U Know Who My Father Is?, Should Come with a Warning SWATCHES

TRUST FUND BEAUTY: Dirty Thoughts, Do U Know Who My Father Is?, Should Come with a Warning SWATCHES

Should Come With a Warning ($12) is the only one I haven’t had time to wear but it’s another great spring polish. It’s a pastel coral pink shimmer that on my longer nails will need 3 coats.

I’ve introduced you to NINE ZERO LACQUERS before and I’m happy to report that their monthly polishes are now available all the time. That takes the pressure off buying before the month is over. Their Nail of the Month polishes are $11 and are very special, while their regular line is mostly $10. All Nine Zero lacquers are 3-free, meaning no Dibutyl Phthalate (DBP), Formaldehyde, or Toluene. Each bottle is hand mixed by Jessica of Jessface90 on You Tube.

NINE ZERO LACQUER Full Bloom and April 2016

NINE ZERO LACQUER Full Bloom and April 2016

I love the holographic glitter in these polishes. The shine is amazing, the wear even better.

NINE ZERO LACQUER April 2016

NINE ZERO LACQUER April 2016

April 2016 is a baby pink holographic with holographic silver microglitter added in for extra sparkle. I didn’t consider it a baby pink, I found much more depth to it. This stayed absolutely perfect for 7 days, not even a tiny flaw in it. The scattered hologram was strong and attracted the kind of attention I like. It took two passes of polish remover to remove but it was worth that little bit of extra effort. I love these polishes.

NINE ZERO LACQUER April 2016 and Full Bloom

NINE ZERO LACQUER April 2016 and Full Bloom

Full Bloom is a light pink jelly base, packed with silver holographic microglitter. The polish in the bottle appears much darker than it is on nails. I’ve got a wedding at the end of May and I’m saving this beauty for that day.

FORMULA X from Sephora is a favorite brand and one of the few non-indie brands I’ll buy. I’ve found them to be consistent in their quality. I fell for Ladylove once I saw the iridescence in it. After a long winter I was ready for a princess pink and this delivered.

FORMULA X Ladylove

FORMULA X Ladylove

FORMULA X Ladylove

FORMULA X Ladylove

FORMULA X Ladylove

FORMULA X Ladylove

I recommend any and all of these polishes. These three brands are among the ones I’m willing to buy again without hesitation. I hope you will too.  —  Marcia

Join the other bloggers to see what polishes they will share to make the next few months more beautiful.


*Trust Fund received by PR, others purchased

Makeup Wars favorite new brand: Polish Me Silly plus more

Favorite indie polishes: Nine Zero, Polish Me Silly, Lilypad Lacquer

Favorite indie polishes: Nine Zero, Polish Me Silly, Lilypad Lacquer

Makeup Wars this week will be quite diverse since the participants have a wide open range of items to choose from with Favorite New Brand. It took me absolutely no time to decide on what to write about since I’m crazy about nail polish. My preference is to buy Indie brands of polish. While I love so many brands, both indie and mainstream, my heart really belongs to the Indie brands. By buying these you are supporting other women who love polish and put their heart and soul into designing colors and polishes that will make your nails sing.

Polish Me Silly in Paradise and Dynamite

Polish Me Silly in Paradise and Dynamite

One such brand is POLISH ME SILLY *, created by a mother/daughter team and sold on Etsy.

All of our polishes are custom- blended and have loose cosmetic-grade glitters, micas and colorants added to them. They are 3 free~~NO Dibutyl Phthalate (DBP)~~NO Formaldehyde and NO Toluene.

Paradise is aptly named. I’m in paradise wearing this polish. It’s called a Mega Multichrome polish which is a great description. It’s like wearing a rainbow of colors on my fingers. In different lights, it turns different colors. It is often a beautiful teal but then you’ll look and see some navy peeking out on one side. Move your hand and you’ll see a deep enticing cool purple.

Polish Me Silly Paradise

Polish Me Silly Paradise

Just look at the shifts this one polish has. I’ve been wearing it for 5 days now and it looks like new. People have either grabbed my hand to look at it more closely or come up to tell me how gorgeous it is. I used three coats for this manicure because my nails are long right now and I wanted no visible nail line.

Dynamite is the second polish that Polish Me Silly sent and I can’t wait to wear it. This is also a Mega Multichrome so it’s like a party on your nails. Dynamite is a gorgeous reddish-magenta, burnt orange, yellowish-golden & green color shift (description from Polish Me Silly). Just look at this picture from Very Emily to see why it needs to be on your list a.s.a.p.

Polish Me Silly Dynamite (picture from Very Emily)

Polish Me Silly Dynamite (picture from Very Emily)

When I was swatching these on my nail wheel I could easily see that Dynamite was a two coat polish with Paradise needing that third coat. At $8.50 each you will attract the kind of attention you want to attract.

POLISH ME SILLY: Dynamite and Paradise

POLISH ME SILLY: Dynamite and Paradise

There are two other brands that I’ve been loving lately too. Nine Zero Lacquer and Lilypad Lacquer are two brands I’ve been buying.

Nine Zero Lacquer in February 2016 and Santa Suit

Nine Zero Lacquer in February 2016 and Santa Suit

I discovered Nine Zero Lacquer on Kellie Gonzo’s blog when she showed the February 2016 Polish of the Month and I fell in love with it. At the time I also bought Santa’s Suit which is a stunning cherry red jelly with gold microglitter in it. This is still available for $10 but the polish of the month is only available for one month. I have the April one ordered and will share that when it arrives. I’m a little biased about Nine Zero since it’s made in Michigan and the shipping prices are so reasonable.

Nine Zero Lacquer February 2016

Nine Zero Lacquer February 2016

I love shades that have holographic glitter within. I don’t wear true glitter because of how difficult it is to take off. But polishes like the ones being shown today are easy to remove.

Polishes from Nine Zero Lacquer, Lilypad Lacquer, Polish Me Silly

Polishes from Nine Zero Lacquer, Lilypad Lacquer, Polish Me Silly

The third brand that I’m thrilled to share is Lilypad Lacquer. I discovered this brand on Cosmetic Sanctuary. It’s sold on Color4Nails and Lisa has a code for 10% off: CSant10 that I used when I bought my polishes.

Lilypad Lacquer in Iconic and Edgy

Lilypad Lacquer in Iconic and Edgy

Iconic is a light purple lavender with blue shimmer. Edgy is a darker purple described as a blackened violet with violet shimmer.

Lilypad Lacquer in Edgy

Lilypad Lacquer in Edgy

Do you have a favorite Indie brand of polish? Have you ever tried the brands I’ve shown? I’m sure my love for these will continue to grow as will my collection. — Marcia

Join the other Makeup Wars bloggers to discover their special finds.


*provided for review, rest are self purchased

Top Ten Eyeshadow Primers

It’s Top Ten Tuesday time and our topic is primers this week. It will come as no surprise to regular Beauty Info Zone readers that my list is all about Eyeshadow Primers. It’s not that I don’t have enough facial primers to use for our topic but I’m a little nuts (or maybe a lot) and have this need to have all the eyeshadow primers available. While 10 are mentioned here I have more that I like but maybe not quite as much as these.

Eyeshadow Primers come in all prices which I’m demonstrating for you today with versions that range from $2 to $32. Price isn’t always the determining factor when it comes to this type of product. My $2 primer from E.L.F. works almost as well as my $20 Too Faced primers. The important thing to me is to use an eyeshadow primer every time I do my eyes. Primer is meant to even out skintone, make the colors last without creasing, help eyeshadow colors go on more evenly, and create a more vibrant look.

Top 10 eyeshadow primers

Top 10 eyeshadow primers

$1-$2  E.L.F. SHADOW LOCK EYELID PRIMER || There are 3 shades of this primer available. Right now E.L.F. is having a moving sale so the colors left are available for $1 but normally they are $2. My favorite is Champagne (there’s also Sheer and Pearl) because it is a light taupe/champagne shade adding some interest without a bit of shimmer.

$6.49  MILANI EYESHADOW PRIMER || This is one of my very favorite primers. I usually look for a sale on it and pick up 2 at a time. It took me a while too appreciate it since it’s thick at first but I learned to love it after running out of Too Faced Shadow Insurance once and now I always have one handy.

$6.99  NYX EYESHADOW BASE  ||  My only pot eyeshadow primer although that’s all I used to use. This has good points and bad. I’m not a fan of the pot itself. For someone with long nails it’s just a pain. I bought this in Pearl because I wanted the tiny bit of pearly shimmer which makes this worth getting out a taklon brush to apply it. It’s stiff and doesn’t go on as easily as a cream product but it does the job well and Ulta often has sales on NYX. This is also available in white and skintone.

Milani, NYX, ELF eyeshadow primers

Milani, NYX, ELF eyeshadow primers

$15  em cosmetic eyeshadow primer  ||  No one ever talks about em cosmetics anymore. This Michelle Phan line came out with a bang but it’s whimpering away. Out of all the products I’ve bought from the line this is the stand out. There’s a slight gleam to it that peeks through and makes eyeshadow more vibrant. I’d buy this again without a doubt.

em cosmetics eyeshadow primer

em cosmetics eyeshadow primer

$18  bareMinerals PRIME TIME EYESHADOW PRIMER  ||  This is a great primer but it’s really small. It’s a perfect size for travel though but I’m going through this pretty quickly for home use. I wish I didn’t like it this much or that the price wasn’t quite this high. My shadows stay so well when I’m using it.

bareMinerals eyeshadow primer

bareMinerals eyeshadow primer

$20  TOO FACED SHADOW INSURANCE  ||  This is the eyeshadow primer that changed the game. It’s the most talked about, that’s for sure. Be sure you shake it before using it the first time and then again about once a week. It can come out watery which you want to avoid. TFSI is the one I use the most because I can really rely on it. I know it will keep me creasefree under all conditions.

$20  TOO FACED SHADOW INSURANCE CANDLELIGHT  ||  Too Faced created a few more of their Shadow Insurance to meet the needs of everyone. The one I have is Candlelight which is a bright gold that just lights up my eyes. There are days I’ll put Candlelight on my lids, TFSI original on my brow bone, and a beautiful brown toned shadow in the crease. There’s no glitter in Candlelight but it is a bright shimmery gold. If I wore more glitter eyeshadows I’d buy TF Glitter Glue Shadow Primer since I know the quality of the brand.

Too Faced Shadow Insurance in Candlelight and original

Too Faced Shadow Insurance in Candlelight and original

$21  LORAC BEHIND THE SCENES EYE PRIMER  ||  I don’t know why everyone isn’t shouting about this from their rooftops. It’s a fabulous eyeshadow primer. There was a small one in my LORAC Pro Palette and once I used it I knew I needed it in a full size. It’s $1 more than the Too Faced but it’s considerably bigger so there’s more bang for your buck. It has a slant tip opening which can get a little messy but I usually squeeze it out on my hand to apply rather than directly on my eye. I’m telling you – you are missing out on a gem if you don’t have this primer.

Lorac Behind the Scenes eyeshadow primer

Lorac Behind the Scenes eyeshadow primer

$29  BENEFIT AIR PATROL  ||  I had no intention of buying this because it’s obvious I don’t need another primer in my life. But I got a sample that lasted me for a few days and that sold me. This is very yellow which is why I wasn’t going to buy it. But once I used it I realized that the color wasn’t an issue once applied. This is considered to be a BB Cream Eyelid Primer and it has broad spectrum SPF 20 which I’m happy about. The tip is different since it’s a “cushion calm” tip that is exceptionally soft. A little goes a long way with this so I expect it to last a good amount of time.

Benefit Air Patrol eyeshadow primer

Benefit Air Patrol eyeshadow primer

$32  EDWARD BESS ILLUMINATING EYESHADOW BASE  ||  Edward Bess was my splurge item. I bought it much before the Benefit so even though the prices aren’t too far different I knew it was a splurge. It comes in three shades (Dune, Cashmere, Suede). Cashmere was my choice and I’m happy that I bought it. It looks a lot like a concealer with its brush applicator. Once I let it dry shadows really adhere to it. Anytime I have a poor performing shadow I turn to this Illuminating Base since I know if it doesn’t work with this, then the shadow just isn’t going to work. It’s worth the extra money even if I save it for special days.

Edward Bess eyeshadow primer

Edward Bess eyeshadow primer

I have other eyeshadow primers that I like (Urban Decay, Make Up For Ever, and IT Cosmetics for example) but they don’t get used as often as these 10. I know not everyone needs 10+ eyeshadows in their life but I’m obsessed and obviously obsessive! — Marcia

Join my friends in finding out what primers have changed their lives.


 

*affiliate links, all items are purchases

Spring for beautiful eyes with Mally and tarte

Spring beauty with tarte rainforest of the sea and Mally Evercolor shadow stick extra

Spring beauty with tarte rainforest of the sea and Mally Evercolor shadow stick extra

In the beauty world there are several ways to change your looks for spring. We can lighten up our skincare and foundation, we can bring new springy shades of lipstick into our makeup wardrobe, and we can check out the newest eye products to create a softer yet brighter eye. For this week’s Makeup Wars, I’ve chosen eye makeup since that’s what I’ll always crave. Two brands are dominating my life right now – Mally Beauty and tarte. I’ve been totally enamored with the products I’m going to show you and finding it hard to move away from them.

Mally provided for consideration, tarte is a self purchase

Mally Evercolor Shadow Stick Extra

Mally Evercolor Shadow Stick Extra

Mally Beauty has created Evercolor Shadow Stick Extra and these are out of this world. Mally’s eyeliners have always been beauty lovers favorites and now they are better than ever. You can line with them, you can use them as an eyeshadow base shade, or you can use them as your eyeshadow. Whichever way you chose you won’t be disappointed.

Mally Evercolor Shadow Stick Extra in Marina, Over the Taupe, and Storm

Mally Evercolor Shadow Stick Extra in Marina, Storm, and Over the Taupe

I have 3 of the 10 shades and am planning a trip to Ulta to check out several other of the shades. The 10 shades are Shimmering Mauve, Royal Plum, Pink Champagne, Burnished Bronze, Champagne, Autumn Shimmer, Chocolate Diamond, Marina, Storm, and Over The Taupe.

Mally (from left) Storm, Marina, Over The Taupe

Mally (from left) Storm, Marina, Over The Taupe

These apply like a breeze. They dry fast but you have enough time to work with them before they are set for the entire day. My favorite way to use these is to start on my lid with a light touch and blend, then use the same shade in the crease and blend so there aren’t harsh lines. That gives me the ombre effect that I love.

Mally Beauty Evercolor Shadow Stick Extra in Over the Taupe

Mally Beauty Evercolor Shadow Stick Extra in Over the Taupe

I don’t want to say I pick favorites but there’s something that’s just over the top about one of these. It makes a beautiful liner and smudges nicely under my eyes as well as being a great all around shade as a base or alone. Check out Ulta and Ulta.com for these beauties. I’ll be there for Champagne and Pink Champagne myself.

tarte Rainforest of the Sea eyeshadow palette

tarte Rainforest of the Sea eyeshadow palette

tarte hasn’t drawn me in for a long time. I have a lot of tarte products in my collection and I use them fairly often so most of their newer offerings didn’t grab my attention. But their limited edition Rainforest of the Sea had me at hello.

tarte Rainforest of the Sea eyeshadow palette

tarte Rainforest of the Sea eyeshadow palette

Every time I’d see this palette in a blog post or ad I’d drool over it. This has been a perfect spring palette for me because I’m feeling better in a softer eye now that winter is almost gone for good. The colors in this palette are all subdued and slightly heathery. Mermaid (gold), Seashell (pink), Wave (slate), Abyss (dark brown), Reef (copper), Starfish (bronze), Cove (tan), Sand (ivory). They don’t apply as dark as they appear in the palette.

tarte Rainforest of the Sea

tarte Rainforest of the Sea

It was hard to get good clean swatches since the shades are subtle so these are several passes over primer.tarte rainforest of the sea swatch 5Seashell, the top pink, is the shade that holds this palette together for me. I love it on my lid with Sand (ivory) on my browbone. Any of the other shades are what I chose to complement the pink.

The texture of tarte Rainforest of the Sea is one of the nicest ones that tarte has done. The shades are metallic or matte, no glitter seen here. They are very creamy to the touch and apply with minimal fallout. Rainforest of the Sea is a Sephora exclusive that I’m happy is living with me. — Marcia

Makeup Wars links with other top bloggers so please visit to see what they are sharing. You won’t be disappointed. I always find new treasures.


*affiliate links, pr samples from mally

Skincare 101 – my Paula’s Choice regimen

Paula's Choice Resist line - my personal regimen

Paula’s Choice Resist line – my personal regimen

Makeup Wars is always a favorite for me. If you haven’t been hanging around Beauty Info Zone then you might not know that Makeup Wars is when a group of bloggers choose a topic and we all post about the same general idea. But the articles are so varied since we are all coming from different places in our life. Skincare 101 is a most exciting post because I know that I’m going to learn so much from the other “warriors” and what they are going to share.

I’m sharing my Paula’s Choice Resist products that I received from #PRIMP, Pretty in my Pocket, after a wonderful phone consultation. I’ve loved and used Paula’s Choice products for years. But the line has gotten so big that I was at a loss as to what I really should be using. I read the descriptions and everything sounds wonderful. The phone consult which takes between 10 and 15 minutes and is free to all, is perfect. Your representative discusses your skin type, age, skin concerns, and what you want to work on and then creates your own personal regimen. You can then pick out which items you want to start with or wait for another day. I recommend that you don’t wait though. I’ve been using my PC Resist products for 4 months now and don’t intend to stop. I’ll add in other lines that I want to review but I’ve always gone back to Paula’s Choice.

For this review you need to know that I’ve got skin that used to be combination but is now on the dry side, especially in cold weather. My concerns are keeping my face looking as youthful as possible while dealing with large pores, fine lines, and firmness.

CLEANSING:

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

I use both the Resist Optimal Results Hydrating Cleanser and Advanced Replenishing Toner morning and evening. There are other cleansers in the Resist line but for my needs (and advancing age) I needed one that is gentle and hydrating. This is a lotion that cleanses my skin and removes any facial makeup without stripping my skin of essential oils. While it works for all skin types it’s especially recommended for normal to dry.

The Resist Advanced Replenishing Toner is a step that I often resist. There’s so much misinformation around about using a toner and it’s often skipped but it can be an essential step in balancing your skin and keeping it well preserved (and not pickled). This toner is one for anti-aging which can be seen in the ingredients. It helps build collagen for firmer skin, it contains anti-irritants to calm redness, and it has licorice extract & acetyl glucosamine to improve skin tone. The packaging is hard plastic so you can’t really squeeze it out, you pour it onto a cotton pad and there’s never too much that comes out. It removes all vestiges of makeup. It’s great after using a cleansing cloth if you are too tired to use a soap and water cleanser since it removes all the residue from the cloth.

DAYTIME:

Paula's Choice Resist Daily Smoothing Treatment and Cellular Defense Daily Moisturizer

Paula’s Choice Resist Daily Smoothing Treatment and Cellular Defense Daily Moisturizer

After cleansing and toning I use Paula’s Choice Resist Daily Smoothing Treatment and Resist Cellular Defense Daily Moisturizer. These are daytime only for me because of the ingredients in them.

The Resist Daily Smoothing Treatment with 5% AHA contains glycolic acid which gently exfoliates and protects your skin’s barrier. This was chosen for me because it helps fade sun damage. I’m a firm believer in SPF but that’s not how I was brought up. I apply this AHA treatment as soon as I’ve finished with the two cleansing products. I like it to sink into my skin while I’m putting on my eye makeup. This is a light yellow creamy lotion that makes my skin feel very soft. I love anything that helps me correct my uneven skintone so this is a definite rebuy for me.

Resist Cellular Defense Daily Moisturizer w/Broad Spectrum SPF 25 is the only moisturizer I took on a recent trip. I was packing light and this tube was exactly what I needed. I used it both day and night but at home I just use this during the day. Cellular Defense Daily Moisturizer fits all the things I’m looking for in a daytime product: fragrance-free, broad spectrum sunscreen (mineral based), works as an anti-aging product, contains antioxidants, and my foundation never balls up when using this PC sunscreen.

NIGHTTIME:

Paula's Choice Resist Barrier Repair Moisturizer and Resist BHA 9

Paula’s Choice Resist Barrier Repair Moisturizer and Resist BHA 9

Paula’s Choice Resist Barrier Repair Moisturizer and her Resist BHA 9 are the two products I use only at night. After cleansing and toning I first apply Resist BHA 9 and let it work its magic on my skin. This thin tube is totally different than the other BHA I have from Paula’s Choice. I laughed when I got this because it’s subtitled as “for stubborn imperfections” which describes my life to a tee. This is actually a product that’s good for so many of us as it is a concentrated salicylic acid spot treatment to tackle the most stubborn imperfections for dramatic results without irritation. It’s to be used for acne breakouts, Anti-Aging, blackheads, enlarged pores, and keratosis pilaris. Being stubborn myself I use this all over my face and not as a spot treatment. My main goal with this is for my enlarged pores and anti-aging. I am seeing a difference on the pores on my cheeks, especially when I apply cream blush. During Christmas there were so many deals popping up that I bought a set containing this BHA so I wouldn’t run out. It has a slightly oily feel to it. I’ve never had any irritation with this. It’s a winner for me.

Paula's Choice Resist BHA 9

Paula’s Choice Resist BHA 9

Since the Resist Barrier Repair Moisturizer has retinol in it, it’s strictly for night use around here. This was chosen for me because I had said I’m concerned with fine lines and future wrinkles. It’s very lightweight so I thought that it wouldn’t be enough moisturizing for me this winter but I was mistaken. I’m testing other skincare right now but I make sure to use this Barrier Repair Moisturizer a few times a week. The retinol in this works to improve skintone and I’ve been very happy with that overall. The percentage of retinol isn’t mentioned anywhere but it’s a mild one. This is best for normal to dry skin and happily is fragrance free.

EYE CREAM:

Paula's Choice Resist Anti-Aging Eye Cream

Paula’s Choice Resist Anti-Aging Eye Cream

Oh what an uproar there was when Paula’s Choice announced they now had an eye cream. It was always her stand that we didn’t need a separate cream for eyes and many of her products are recommended to be used near your eyes. But women (especially me) want an eye cream and Paula listened. Paula’s Choice Resist Anti-Aging Eye Cream was brought out after much testing since she knew she’d be scrutinized by everyone for going against her grain. This is a nicely rich eye cream that hasn’t caused me to have any milia. I used it religiously for 2 months and now alternate it with any others that I’m testing. I love the packaging of it but I often get out more than I actually need. The amount on my finger is really enough for both eyes twice. I try to squeeze lightly so that not too much comes out. I rub it between my fingers to soften it and pat it on under my eyes. While it’s a very good eye cream at a good price, I’m not sure if this is a repurchase, but then again I have a drawer full of eye creams so we’ll see down the road.

There you have my Paula’s Choice regimen. When I’m ready to add new products or I have a question about one of their products I’d have no problem calling again or using their live chat online. I also have no problem telling you that this is a line to be trusted and one I believe in. If I had a daughter, I’d gladly steer her towards Paula’s Choice to find her own routine.

What Paula’s Choice products do you have or covet?  — Marcia

Click here for $10 off your first order!!


*products received by PRIMP, Pretty in my Pocket. Affliate links

Makeup Wars shines with favorite Highlighters and Illuminators

Favorite highlighters & illuminators from Tom Ford, Hourglass, IT Cosmetics, Becca

Favorite highlighters & illuminators from Tom Ford, Hourglass, IT Cosmetics, Becca

MAKEUP WARS is sharing some of the highlighters and illuminators that make us twinkle and shine, that make us glimmer and shimmer, that make us excited to be women in 2016.

Not every one of my highlighters is shown here, just the 3 newest and one all time favorite. There are many more that I really like but some just stand out more than others. Introducing 4 of mine: TOM FORD MOODLIGHT, HOURGLASS AMBIENT IRIDESCENT STROBE LIGHT, IT COSMETICS HELLO LIGHT CREME ILLUMINATOR, and BECCA MOONSTONE.

Tom Ford Skin Illuminator Powder Duo in Moodlight

Tom Ford Skin Illuminator Powder Duo in Moodlight

Tom Ford Skin Illuminator Powder Duo in Moodlight ($80) is one gorgeous illuminator. I resisted this for so long but the more I read about it and saw photos the more I desired it. This is amazingly subtle even if the photo doesn’t look that way. You are able to control the amount of illumination, easily building it up from an understated amount that brightens and lightens your face to a shimmery amount that gives more of a bronzing highlight. Tom Ford Moodlight (sometimes seen as Moonlight on a website) can be used separately or together. Use a big fluffy brush for an all over sweep of illumination or a blush brush to emphasize certain areas of your face.

Hourglass Ambient Iridescent Strobe Light

Hourglass Ambient Iridescent Strobe Light

There are 4 different Hourglass Ambient Strobe Powders. I chose Iridescent since it has a touch of pink that the others I’ve been using lack. Hourglass Ambient Iridescent Strobe Light is described as an illuminating pink powder imparting a soft highlight. I have very fair cool toned skin and I thought this would add enough brightness without being overwhelming. And I was right. This is subtle yet lights up my face. The powder is angel soft to the touch yet doesn’t ever look powdery on me.

Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Moonstone

Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Moonstone

Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Moonstone ($38) is the golden highlighter that I have. I bought a set that contained a travel size of Moonstone and it was one of the best buys I made. Moonstone, one of 7 shades, is a pale gold. It is slightly sparkly so it’s not a daytime look for me. I prefer to apply this with my fingers instead of a brush. It has an almost creamy finish to it so my fingers pick up this very soft powder and I find that my face is more luminous when used this way. The formula is enriched with ultrafine luminescent pearls. If I had to pick one brand for highlighting and illuminating it would be Becca. They really do stand out in this field.

Becca, Hourglass, Tom Ford swatches

Becca, Hourglass, Tom Ford swatches

As someone who favors cream products I couldn’t leave out IT COSMETICS ($24). They’ve created two Hello Lights! Anti-Aging Illuminizers – Powder and  Creme. I love them both but IT Cosmetics Hello Lights Anti-Aging Creme Illuminizer is my favorite.

IT Cosmetics Hello Lights Anti-Aging Creme Illuminizer

IT Cosmetics Hello Lights Anti-Aging Creme Illuminizer

Besides having wonderful anti-aging and hydrating ingredients (infused with peptides, hyaluronic acid, hydrolyzed collagen, silk and vitamins A, C, & E), it gives such a subtle and luminous glow. It’s perfect for spot highlighting like at the top of your cheekbones, above your eyebrows, and the cupid’s bow of your mouth. It’s a lit from within look and one I use often.

There are dozens more highlighters and illuminators that I enjoy using. Adding a bit of a liquid highlighter into foundation gives a beautiful dewy look, using an illuminating primer like COVER FX does all the work for you. Just don’t go without at least one of these wonderful products in your makeup collection.

Do you have a favorite in this category? Dare I ask what it is?  — Marcia