Fashion Flash




Fashion Flash is live and is hosted, this week by the lovely Allison of Never Say Die Beauty. Pop over, say hi and catch up on what the ladies of Fashion Flash have been up to.

Have a great week!

Hi Mirror Plus -- A Tech and Skin Care Fanatic's Dream

//this is a sponsored conversation about the Hi Mirror Plus through the Primp Network//all thoughts and opinions about the product are honest and my own and are not influenced either by Hi Mirror or the Primp Network//

Say hello to Hi Mirror Plus, the next generation, souped up version of the acclaimed Hi Mirror, the advanced smart beauty mirror that is a tech and skin care fanatic's dream and my new beauty companion.

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Out of the box, Hi Mirror Plus is easy to mount on a mirror or wall or set up on a table top in a sturdy easel or plate rack, fire up and get going. I started by watching a quick video tutorial right on my mirror that would guide me through the easy and quick mounting process (had I not decided to use an easel). I was dismayed to see that the woman featured in the segment teaching how to mount this device to a mirror was replaced by a man when it came time to mount it to a wall. What? A girl can't use a power drill, hammer and drywall anchors? Huh. Then who mounted my shelves in my laundry room? I know... Let it go. Nope. I feel that the video is sexist and I'm going to ding it.

After I uploaded the Hi Mirror and Hi Skin Apps to my smartphone from Google Play (or The App Store for IOS), getting my mirror in action and my first skin analysis took only minutes. Everything is laid out, step by step. Follow the yellow brick road, it's easy-peasy. When I first turned my mirror on, I opened the camera and let the mirror take a picture. Then, I was asked to speak a phrase to it to teach it my voice. The beauty of this mirror's software is that the advanced face recognition and voice recognition make it possible for up to six people to use the mirror, each with their own personalized settings.

The main way to navigate through the menu and various other features is with a hand gesture. I learned, after much trial and error that holding my hand with my fingers in tight, my hand fully upright and canted at a slight angle (as if I'm going to snap off a salute) works best. The mirror taught me the correct distance from the surface and the speed at which to move my hand. The gesture recognition is not perfect, I often have to repeat and can, at times get a little frustrated and I find myself wishing that the mirror understood and responded to more voice commands. It's easier, for me to say, "Hi Mirror. Listen." and give it the command. But so far, it only seems to let me in and to take me to my Home screen by voice.

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I wanted to get a picture of my skin analysis on my mirror, but my camera and lighting could only do so much and I'm not a crack shot with Photoshop. I hope that it gives you an idea, tho.

In addition to my Hi Mirror Plus, I received the Hi Skin attachment, a little skin analysis tool that gives an even more in depth picture of the skin's condition, both in individual areas and overall. I've not played with it, all that much because honestly, I'm just enjoying and getting good feedback from the in mirror photo feature.

Getting a skin analysis couldn't be easier! Turn on the mirror, sign in by camera or voice and the mirror will scroll through local weather and a headline or two then offer to take a pic and check my skin's condition. The mirror guides positioning, so that I'm at the right distance and angle, then it snaps the shot, analyzes my skin, according to what it sees then it pops my results. Quick and painless.

Now, skin care is important to me and I spend a lot of time and money taking care of my skin and I was happy to see, according to Hi Mirror Plus I am doing a good job! Texture, wrinkles, pores, tone, brightness all in the upper 90%. Brightness is a little lower, due to my monstrous dark circles. Since they are hereditary and exacerbated by allergies, those babies aren't going anywhere. While I definitely have some room for improvement, I was really happy to see that overall, my skin is good.

I was curious about how this mirror would judge my skin, as a 52 year old woman, as opposed to how it would judge the skin of a 25 year old. The mirror, upon setup asks for age and date of birth so my skin is analyzed on my own level, not against parameters set up for someone half my age. Well done!

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Hi Mirror Plus can store my favorite skin care products and give me recommendations on new or different ones to try to further improve and maintain my complexion. Hi Mirror is a full service Personal Beauty System, not only does it analyze my skin, it can, with an attachment help to track weight, as well.

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When it's time to put on my makeup, I get to fire up my favorite feature. The light strips. A few touches to the contact points and I have light, customized to my specifications of the day or evening. You know what I'd like on my mirror is a magnification feature. 3X, 5X, 10X at a touch of a button so make checking eye liner, lashes or plucking and so on easier would be great! #getoffmylawn

I am still enjoying getting to know all of the features and nuances of my Hi Mirror Plus. I am looking forward to the day it will synch with my Pandora account because, Mama likes her music when she's getting ready.

 Is Hi Mirror Plus something that you'd like to pick up for yourself or someone special? Imagine the look on your mom's face, when she opens this bad boy on Mother's Day! If you are ready to invest in a smart beauty mirror that can help guide you to the best skin of your life, use code 139XO to receive a 5% discount. This is not an affiliate code, it is a special discount, just for you.

Please check out Brooke's and Sheila's posts for their take on the Hi Mirror Plus.

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My Favorite Scrubs for Baby Soft Skin

//some items were sent for editorial consideration//others are self purchased//affiliate links that help support my blog and don't cost you anything extra are in use//

Who doesn't love baby soft skin on their face and body? I know that I do! One of my favorite methods for acquiring and maintaining smooth skin on my face, bod and even my lips is to use a good scrub. I'm hooked on scrubs, the scrubbier the scrub, the better. Here are some of the scrubs I rely on, buy and repurchase and don't ever want to be without.

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Reviva Labs Light Skin Peel. Not really a peel-peel. This lovely, cooling, lavender and herb scented stuff scrubs with natural exfoliators and real flowers. After scrubbing, I let it play masque. I leave it on until it dries then rinse and my skin feels renewed. I especially love this during our nasty-hot Arizona summers.

Derma E Microdermabrasion Scrub with Dead Sea Salt. Affordable, easy to find at many local stores and oh, wow! Effective as I could ever wish. My jar is the old packaging. I don't really care, as it's what's inside the jar that counts

 OZ Naturals Ancient Orient Bamboo Enzyme Dermafoliant an update to the rice powder product, shown here and in updated packaging. This is amaze! When my face needs a hella scrub down, I reach for this. A little powder in the palm of my hand, add a little water and get to it.

Exuviance Triple Microdermabrasion Face Polish. Combine a creamy base, physical skin polishing crystals, Papaya Enzyme and Glycolic Acid and you get a combination scrub/masque that makes me glow, baby, glow! This stuff is spendy, I won't lie. It's also worth every dime.

Serious Skin Care Clycolic Gommage Extreme Renewal. Another combo of scrubby bits and Glycolic Acid that deeply cleanses, sweeps away loose, dead skin cells and leaves silken, glowing skin in it's wake. If you want more on my thoughts on this incredible stuff, see my Instagram review, here.

Lather Chia Seed and Passion Fruit Exfoliating Gel. You know how much I love me some Lather and this cleanser is no exception. When I want a fresh clean and a gentle buff up, this is my go-to. If you are very sensitive but want effective cleansing and a smoother complexion, I recommend this stuff, wholeheartedly.

Vanilla & Argan Lip Scrub. Yeah. Yeah. I know. I have Sugar Plum. But that was a LE flavor and is not available but the Vanilla and Argon is the same difference. A lovely, lip nourishing base and fine sugar gently, yet effectively polish away dry, flaky lip skin and leaves my pout feeling pillowy soft. This scrub is effective yet it is gentle enough that it doesn't irritate my annoyingly sensitive lips.

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We must, we must, we must, we must increase our bust exfoliate our bods! Whether I'm prepping for a fakealoo tan or just want to refresh and renew my skin and feel soft, all over I reach for a good scrub.

Lather Lavender & Olive Foaming Body Scrub is a spa day in my shower. I reserve this for days when I want to pamper myself. A little goes a long way, I've used this quite a few times and I still have a ton left! This lavender and olive scented scrub lathers up as it's worked into my skin then rinses away clean to leave me happy, soft and relaxed.

Farmhouse Fresh Sweet Tea Whipped Body Scrub. Sweet. Really does smell like tea. Deeply exfoliates and rinses away clean to leave my skin soft as soft can be and ready to receive any moisturizer or body butter I want to use. I especially like this scrub for my hands. As I get older, regular exfoliation and deep hydration are required to keep my hands looking and feeling their very best.

Soap & Glory Flake Away Body Polish. I'm not exaggerating when I say that I buy tub after tub after tub of this stuff. Fine and coarse sea salt, light, natural oils and that fabulous Original Pink Fragrance. Follow up with The Righteous Butter and I feel like a whole new woman. Soft, delicately yet lastingly scented and so girly.

The best part of all of these body scrubs? They don't leave my shower a slippery hazard zone. As usual, when using any softening and hydrating product in the shower, I make sure to step with care. Me, nekkid, wet, no bra, surrounded by paramedics? Not my dream scenario.

So, there ya go. Some of my favorite, tried and true face, lip and body scrubs. They never fail and I can't, won't live without them. What are some of your favorite scrubs? Got any good ones that I should be using? Drop me some suggestions, in the comments section.

This is a post in collaboration with my fellow Makeup Wars Beauty Bloggers. Take a little time to scroll to the end of the page and read up on their favorite scrubs, too. Enablement is a good thing! Go! Be enabled. I'm right behind you. Because...

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How Sweet it is! The Too Faced Peanut Butter & Honey Eye Shadow Palette

What's golden and white and sweet all over?

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//self purchased//affiliate links that help support my blog are in use//

Why, it's the Too Faced Peanut Butter & Honey Eye Shadow Palette. With a bright, happy golden yellow and white honeycomb pattern and a raised slice of honey drenched peanut butter toast, the adorable tin palette is a delight to my eyes.

The smiling toast. The little bee. Cute!

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When I open the lid soft, sweet peanut butter, chocolate and a hint of honey wafts up to delight my nose, as well. In the lid is a primp ready mirror with an accordion folded romance card on which is printed the specifics about the palette and looks tutorials.

There are three sets of three shadows set horizontally into three colour coordinated looks but all of the shades can mix and match to my heart's content.

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The looks from top to bottom are:

Sweet as Honey- Creamed Honey, a softly satin honey creme. Peanut Butter, a warm, satin light brown. Going Nuts, a deep greyed brown with bronze shimmer.

Queen Bee- Bee Sweet, a soft satin pink. This shade can be used as a pale pink blush, as well. Honey Brittle is a satin matte dark peach. Bee's Knees is a warm, matte brown.

PB & H- Queen Bee is an ivory satin. Honey Buns a golden yellow matte and Feelin' Nutty is a bronze-brown satin.

I have heard very mixed reviews about this palette but I have to say, I like it! All of the warm, delicious colours can be used together and work and play well with other shadows from Too Faced and other brand palettes. These shadows apply, build, blend and deliver very pretty, neutral eye looks with a bright twist.

Is the Too Faced Peanut Butter & Honey Eye Shadow Palette the be all, end all palette? Nope. But it is a good palette. The colours are pretty, the quality is damned respectable and it smells lovely, too. I don't know that I will use this palette on a frequent basis and honestly, I don't care. I bought it to enjoy in my collection and to use, when the fancy strikes me and that is good enough for me.

What say you, gentle reader? Do you own this palette? What do you think of it? If you don't yet have it, do you think that you may pick it up?

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Some of My Favorite Makeup Brushes

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In the world of beauty and makeup few things delight me quite like makeup brushes. Like most of my fellow bloggers and makeup lovers, I have quite the ever expanding collection and I am always lusting after yet more. The funny thing is, tho no matter how many brushes I accumulate, I have my favorites and they are the ones I will reach for, time after time and make sure I clean right after using so that they are ready to go, again when I want them.

Most of my makeup brush collection is middle of the road, price point wise. I don't own any of the very gorgeous and spendy hand made Japanese brushes (tho I do own a wishlist of them that is longer than my arm) nor do I own any brushes made by MAC. I know... Gasp! I'm not ruling them out but they have never been a high priority for me. I bought a lot of my brushes back when Sigma was everywhere and I own quite a few brushes from that brand. The rest are a couple of limited edition sets and ala carte purchases or brushes that have, in one way or the other come into my life.

This week, the bloggers of Makeup Wars are sharing with you our favorite makeup brushes and here are some of mine:

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//pr samples//self purchased//affiliate links that help support my site are in use//

I begin with foundation brushes. I normally apply my foundation with a Beauty Blender but there are times when I use a foundation that applies better with a brush so I like to have good foundation brushes on hand.

Hourglass Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation Brush. This beauty is spendy but it is such a good brush and it is worth every penny of the asking price. Densely packed, whisper soft synthetic bristles in a gently angled shape that buffs foundation into my skin and easily works it in around my eyes and nose without having to pick up another tool. When I first received this brush, I was doubtful that I would use it all that much but it has become a favorite for applying foundation, including my beloved Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation Stick.

Sigma F80 Flat Kabuki Brush. This is a good, old go-to favorite. Firm, yet soft, this synthetic bristle brush answers the call, every time I reach for it. This brush smooths on denser liquid and powder foundations like a dream.

Pur Skin Perfecting Foundation Brush. This brush is a revelation. Fashioned after the famous Artis makeup brushes, this foundation brush is a large oval head of extremely densely packed synthetic bristles that feels like a firm velvet cushion on a flexible, angled handle. When I want my foundation to go on fast, I reach for this brush, as it buffs my foundation into my skin in no time and delivers a smooth, flawless finish. It can be a little tricky working this brush around my eyes and nose but once I got the hang of it, it got easier. If you are longing to try one of the beautiful Artis brushes but they aren't in your budget, grab this one. It's a lovely brush.

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I love powder brushes. Big, soft, fluffy, keep-em-as-a-pet powder brushes. If I had unlimited funds, I would buy all of the powder brushes. I own way more powder brushes than one person would need in a lifetime but here are the three I reach for, more often than not.

 IT Brushes for Ulta Love Beauty-Fully All Over Powder Brush #211. I bought this for myself for Christmas, 2014. I was in Ulta, picking up a gift for someone, and this brush was calling to me. I had dropped in and petted it, a few times and that night, I couldn't resist picking it up. I justified it by reminding myself that I had a coupon. Isn't that justification enough for any of us? This huge, dense synthetic brush is amazingly soft. It feels as if I'm applying powder to my face with a baby chinchilla but without the whole cruelty to animals thing.

Real Techniques Blush Brush. This Bargain Beauty Find is nine clams and it is an indispensable brush in my collection. While I find the brush head too large for blush, I reach for it, again and again for powder and sometimes bronzer. The slightly tapered, full but deliciously soft synthetic bristles make it perfect for pressing powder onto my face to set my makeup and it applies bronzer, perfectly without streaks or "dirty" patches. If you haven't tried this brush, get one!

Ilia Finishing Powder Brush. This baby is a dream brush. The weighty, beautifully balanced handle holds a tapered, synthetic brush that picks up and smooths into my makeup the perfect amount of finishing powder and buffs it in perfectly without disturbing the makeup under it. This splendid brush also works a treat for applying bronzer.

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Speaking of bronzer... These are the two brushes for which I most often reach when I want to warm up my complexion with my favorite bronzer.

Sigma F50 Duo Fibre Brush. Being a rather fair skinned person, I like to warm up my complexion with a little bronzer but if I'm not careful, what is supposed to be a subtle, sun kissed glow can quickly become I-fell-face-first-in-a-vat-of-liquid-smoke. Not a good look on me. This lovely duo fibre brush is softer than an angel's wing and it picks up and gently sets down just the perfect amount of sunny warmth on my skin.

When I want a little more oompf in my fake bake, I grab my Sigma F25 Tapered Face Brush. This brush picks up plenty of product and the tulip shape - well, it's supposed to be tulip shaped, mine fell over onto another brush and they kind of freaked each other out - applies bronzer with ease and precision everywhere I want it, including along my hairline, around my nose, ears, jawline and effortlessly helps match a lighter face to a self tanned rest of me.

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I love to contour and I like a good, dense, precision brush like the one you see, above to carve a precise application of contour powder into the hollows of my cheeks, right in under my cheekbones, along my jawline, hairline and to delicately, subtly slenderize my nose then grab a larger, soft brush to blend, creating perfect, delicate shadows just were I want them. While the brush in the photo is no longer available, I found similar ones here and here.

When it comes time to add that luminous, lifting, youthful glow of highlighter to my face, two brushes I usually reach for are the Sigma F55 Small Duo Fibre Brush for a softer, more ethereal glow and the Real Techniques Setting Brush for more power lighting.

I have a highlighting/strobing fan brush but I'm not over the moon for it. Can anyone recommend a fabulous, soft, perfect for precise highlighting fan brush that won't cost me a car payment?

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If there is one area of makeup application with which I still struggle, even after wearing makeup for... Well... More years than I like to count, it is applying blush. I reached my makeup wearing youthful zenith in the eighties. Oh, yeah. The Stripe. I rocked it. Along with the crazy black liner, rainbow eyelids ala Joan Cusak in Working Girl and the super frosty pink lipstick. Memories. Like the dumpster of my mind. What the fuck were we thinking?

Anyway, when that trend mercifully died and pale, minimal makeup got hot-hot-hot I rejoiced and put my blush brush away. Seriously, I rarely wore the stuff, preferring a pale, perfectly matte face, nude-matte, barely there eye shadow, no liner and just a whisper of mascara - upper lashes only - and of course, perfect, matte dark red lips. My makeup was my uniform and it looked precisely the same, day in, day out. It was during that period of time that I lost my blush mojo and I never really fully recovered it. I rely heavily on very flattering-to-me blush shades and of course, the perfect tools to help me apply my blush correctly and not leave me looking like a clown. *shudder... clowns...

It Brushes for Ulta Love Beauty-Fully Flawless Blush Brush #227. This gorgeous to look at brush has a soft, angled head that is a lifesaver when it comes to applying just the right, natural looking flush to my cheeks.

Sigma F10 Powder/Blush Brush. Not quite as precise as an angled brush but very nice for lightly pigmented blushes that need a little more coaxing to build and blend out, just right.

Luxie Rose Gold Large Angled Face Brush 504. This pretty in pink soft, synthetic brush does just as nice a job applying blush as the IT brush. It's nice having a couple of these brushes at hand. I have one ready to go if the other is dirty.

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I don't always use brow brushes but when I do, I have very specific requirements.

Both the Billion Dollar Brows Brow Brush and the Full Brow Dual Brow Brush are firm but not stickery, thin, sharp edged, tapered to a nicety and apply a precise, hair like stroke of pomade or other brow goo to my face framers. Yes, both of these brushes landed on my doorstep with spoolies on their asses. A pair of dykes took care of that little problem. I know. Shocking. Erika murders more double ended brushes. I suppose that I could just leave them but...


So, I don't.

I have spoolies, on their own that I like better than the ones that were attached to my brow brushes. This one is an oldie but goody. I bought it in 1994 for .49 on clearance from Avon. It had a spongy blender thing on the other end.

Had.

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Eye Brushes. I like to use a bunch of them when I do my eyes. One for each colour, each function. Yeah... I'm strange. From the nearest, curving up:

Sigma F65 Small Angle. My all time favorite tight lining brush. It deposits gel liner precisely along my lash line, on my upper water line. I have other angled liner brushes, none do the job like this one does.

Makeup Geek Bent Gel Liner Brush. I see that Makeup Geek has revamped their brush line. Oh well. This is still a damned good liner brush.

Real Techniques Eye Shading Brush. The perfect little brush for applying creme shadow and shadow bases to my lids. It's compact, firm but not hard or scratchy. I use this brush, a lot.

I thought I took that Luxie brush out of the lineup. I need my head examined. Just ignore it.

Sigma E55 Eye Shading Brush. Perfect for pinpoint laydown of shadow. It's very helpful when applying multiple shades to the mobile lid.

Sigma E60 Large Shader. I have a lot of lid space, this brush makes short work of covering all of it, fast.

Coastal Scents Classic Blender Crease Brush. This one is synthetic, I do believe. I think that I received this brush in a swap? And I'm glad that I did. This is a terrific brush! I like a large, firm crease brush that not only builds colour in my crease but has enough body to pull colour up onto my lid hoods and orbital bone and fade it out, creating the illusion that my hoods are receding. If you have hooded eyes and like to do that technique, this is your brush.

Bdellium Tools Blending 776 Brush. I own a handful of these white, tapered blending brushes. I like all of them; I loooove this one. It is firm enough to do what I ask of it yet soft enough to be beautifully comfortable on my lids. And, it's synthetic so I can drown it in alcohol to clean it, thus lifting off even the most stubborn of pigmented eye shadows. I need to pick up another one of these...

Sigma E40 Tapered Blending Brush. Who loves ya, baby? - You're totally picturing me with a bald head and a sucker, aren't you? - Blown out, soft eye looks. Blended to an exquisite level of blended smoky eyes. A fast wash of colour all over my lids. Buffing light coloured shadow over eye primer... Even applying highlighter to the face or pinpoint face powder application. These brushes are so capable and versatile. I own a couple and they are constantly cycling into and out of my dirty brush bin.

And, last but not least... Sigma E30 Pencil Brush. Like my love for powder brushes, I am but head over heels for a good pencil brush. They are so useful; I can use them to line, to make a precise crease, apply a clean, perfect line of shadow under my eyes, a hint of glimmery highlight just along the bottom of my brow line, perfectly light up the inner corners of my eyes without it looking like a messy splotch and of course, create that precise, clean outer V we all love, so much. See? My obsession is a helpful thing.

Okay. Wow. That was a lot of brushes to talk about. Want to know a secret? I pulled more than twice the amount of brushes and suddenly realized that rather than just going a little overboard on yet another Makeup Wars post, I was behaving in a manner one could only describe as bat shit crazy so I edited. A lot.

You believe me, right? Please. Say that you believe me!

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I hope that you enjoyed this little sift through my makeup brush collection and the darker reaches of my mind. If you did, won't you please give it a share? A tweet, a stumble... All are appreciated and there are buttons placed for your convenience.

Don't forget to visit my fellow Makeup Wars bloggers and check out their favorite brushes, too!

Got Dry Skin? Get Farm House Fresh Sunflower Honey Butter

Wait. Did I say honey butter?

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//product sent to me for editorial consideration//all opinions are my own//

Why yes. Yes, I did.

Farmhouse Fresh Organics, a new line of certified GMO, herbicide and pesticide free products joins the Farmhouse Fresh family of beautiful, natural, cruelty free beauty.

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Sunflower Honey Butter is a smooth, creamy, whipped combination of golden, skin pampering honey and shimmering, hydrating sunflower oil rich in essential fatty acids, vitamins E, A and B. Packaged in a quilted glass jelly jar and including a soft as a whisper synthetic fan brush, this gorgeous, golden concoction is just the thing to hydrate and repair my dry, dry skin, leaving it feeling soft, soothed and comfortable.

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I like to dip up a little of this sunflower and sunshine scented skin softener with my finger or the fan brush, smooth it into my legs, feet, knees, elbows, decollete, even my face, when it is feeling especially dry and stressed by the changable weather we are experiencing this spring. Sunflower Honey Butter sinks in, goes to work conditioning and transforming tight, flaky skin to silky, glowing skin in almost no time.

If you have dry, parched skin anywhere on your bod, you need a jar of Farmhouse Sunflower Honey Butter. Trust me, you'll love it.

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Fashion Flash ~ April Fool's Edition is Live


Fashion Flash is live and this week is being hosted by the lovely Melanie at Society Wellness. This week's theme is April Fool's and of course, I forgot! I just submitted a regular article! See... I suck. 😹😹 So head on over, enjoy all of the fabulous posts by our Fashion Flash family and we'll see you here, next week.

Bargain Beauty Find: Jesse's Girl Highlight & Contour Kit

//products sent for editorial consideration//all thoughts and opinions are my own//

I recently received a generous box of beauty goodies from the affordable makeup line, Jesse's Girl and I've had a chance to play with them and determine what items work for me and I really like.

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Today, I thought that we would take a look at the Highlight and Contour Kit. Contouring and highlighting remain hot-hot-hot makeup techniques and when done well, enhance the features and add a lovely, youthful glow to the complexion.

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A lightweight, bare bones, black and clear plastic palette holds eight large pans of face powder in a variety of shades and tones that work for many skin tones.

The top row contains four setting/highlighting powders. The two end pans are softly shimmery highlight shades, the one to the left (as you face your screen) is a lighter, pink/pale and is more reflective, the far right is a slightly less shimmery, goldy-champagne. The two center shades are matte, one a light, neutral setting powder and the other a yellow corrective shade.

On the bottom row we find the contour/bronzing shades, three matte and one shimmer in a mix of warm and cooler tones. The only powder with which I would even consider contouring is the cooler, slightly taupe-y shade sitting center right.

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Swatched in order that you find them in the palette. I don't usually use yellow powder, as it tends to make me look slightly jaundiced. Not a good look. I do like the light, matte powder and the highlight shades. The highlight shades are so pretty on the eyes, as well!

The contour shades are a bit warm for my taste and skin tone for contouring. I prefer a grey-barely-taupe shade that mimics a natural shadow to brown/bronzy shades on my complexion. These soft, silky powders all apply and blend into the skin so nicely and I like them for warming up my skin tone and as a bronzer. I also really dig these shades as eye shadows. The third one is a lovely transition shade, the others work for my lid and crease. Add a highlight from the top row and hello! Eye look.

Overall, I very much like this palette. The quality of the powders is nice, they are soft, finely milled and pick up and blend smoothly into the skin and wear, on my skin all day. My brush kicks up small, powdery puffs but the powders aren't too flyaway or messy.

The slender, lightweight palette is perfect to pop into a makeup bag or carry on for traveling. If I wanted to pack a very minimal amount of makeup for a weekend away, I'd grab this palette, a blush, a snack sized face primer, CC cream, corrector and concealer (musts for me, thanks to my damned dark circles), liner, mascara and a lippie or two. Toss in a few basic travel sized brushes and I'd be set.

If you'd like to try this lovely Contour and Highlight Palette it's a very affordable $12.99 and available from Jesse's Girl Cosmetics and select Rite Aid and Long's drugstores. Find other locations, here.

Jesse's Girl cosmetics are cruelty free.

Have you tried Jesse's Girl Cosmetics? What are your favorites?

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For Fun and Bright Spring Eye Looks Try the PUR Cosmetics Trolls Eye Shadow Palette

//referral/affiliate link that pays me a small commission and helps support my blog is in use//
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Spring has sprung and my thoughts are turning to bright, fresh spring makeup colours.

To celebrate the DreamWorks movie Trolls, one of my favorite cosmetics companies, PUR Cosmetics released the PUR DreamWorks Trolls Eye Shadow Palette. Never mind the candy props and funny name, this is serious makeup for grown ass beauties who love good eye shadow.

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Contained in a slim, portable, silver toned sturdy paperboard magnetic palette is a get yo primp on, on the go sized mirror and sixteen eye shadows in a mix of wearable neutrals and fun, bright pops of colour and textures that can all be mixed and matched to create all kinds of eye looks.

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Have a closer look at the shadowy goodness. Isn't this palette pretty? Rich, warm neutrals in shades of brown, bronze, gold, rusts and oranges. There is a stunning silvery lavender, (Guy Diamond) and Satin & Chenille is a beautiful, semi sheer white that shifts to an almost otherworldly, glowing plasmic purple. Branch is a glorious, intense blue with a strong duochrome shift and Poppy is a shocking, brilliant pink that has a surprisingly good formula for a colour like this.

Below are my usual, craptastic swatches. I think I'm going to become famous for insanely bad swatches, one of these days.

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I tried to capture that plasmic purple glow from Satin & Chenille but my camera just couldn't get there.

Overall, the quality of these shadows is very good. All of the colours are pigmented, the mattes are smooth and the shimmers velvety to the touch. A couple of shades, D J Suki, Fuzzy and Poppy are a little bit stiff to the touch but all of the shadows pick up, apply, build and blend effortlessly and smoothly. I need to remember to tap my brush, as the mattes, especially can kick up a bit of powder and this helps prevent fallout. If you want to go but mad crazy, full out colour explosion on your eyes, applying shadow before foundation may be a good idea but that's the case with just about any eye shadow.

I like the PUR Cosmetics Trolls Eye Shadow Palette. It is a lovely, solid performer that is just a little more fun than the usual. What do you think, gentle reader? Does this look like a palette you'd like to pick up? It is currently available at Kohl's, both in store and online.

Don't forget to use EBATES to get paid cash back when you shop online. Have you tried EBATES, yet? If not, it's easy and free to sign up and get started earning cash back on purchases made from big name retailers like Amazon, Kohl's, Best Buy and many, many more. When you sign up you receive a special gift and you can even have EBATES remind you to use them when you are shopping so that you don't miss out on cash back opportunities from your favorite online retailers.

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Get Soft and Sweetly Scented Skin All Over With Farmhouse Fresh Organics Blushing Agave Body Oil

I don't know about you but these warm, pretty days make me want to get my skin looking and feeling as soft and smooth as humanly possible. What can I employ to get me to my objectives? How about...

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A gorgeous, hydrating body oil from Farmhouse Fresh Organics? Wait. Did I just say, Organics? Why, yes. Yes, I did. Brand new to the Farmhouse Fresh lineup is their Organics products; GMO, synthetic herbicide and pesticide free in addition to being cruelty free, paraben and sulfate free.

Farmhouse Fresh Organics Blushing Agave Body Oil is a rich blend of natural, linoleic oils that soften and hydrate my skin while delivering a light, fresh, floral-sweet scent that is never overpowering or cloying.

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I love to apply Blushing Agave Body Oil when I am fresh out of the shower or bath, on wet skin or smoothed on after towel drying. This oil drops right into my skin and never feels heavy, greasy or sticky. I also have used a little in my hair, on my cuticles and nails... Even my face. I just love this splendid oil so very much and gentle reader, if you are in the mood for a treat for your skin, I recommend that you pick up a bottle.

Are you as big a fan of Farmhouse Fresh Goods as I am? What are your favorites from the line? Anything you think I need to try, next?

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My Top 10 Affordable Hair Care Favorites ~ Makeup Wars

It's that time, again. Time for Makeup Wars! This week, it's all about the hair, baby. Affordable hair care that proves that we don't have to pay a fortune for great hair. Look, I love my salon and department store hair care as well as anyone but I don't always want or can afford to spend the extra moolah for the fancy stuff. If you would like to know what bargain beauty finds my tresses love, read on.

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1 & 2. Hask Macadamia Oil Moisturizing Shampoo provides a lush, cushioning lather, clean rinse away and hair that is clean but not squeaky or stripped. Hask Macadamia Oil Moisturizing Conditioner is thick and rich, very slippy for in shower detangling and comb out. My hair always feels so soft and a bit less frizzy when I use this conditioner. Add the lush, sweet, nutty scent and these are favorites, for sure.

3. L'Oreal Total Repair 5 Damage Erasing Balm is a deep drink for my stressed tresses. It doesn't repair hair. Nothing does but this stuff does help to temporarily "glue" my strands back together and imparts mad shine and softness. Be careful using this in the shower, tho! 'Tis slippery.

4. OGX Quenching Coconut Curls Curling Hair Butter. This is a rinse out or leave in treatment that pours moisture into my thick, parched wurls. Frizz is tamped down, pretty waves and curls form and my hair feels soft but not in the least bit greasy or weighed down.

5.  OGX Argan Oil of Morocco Creamy Hair Butter. Another fave for deep hydration and softening this crazy, dry, frizzy mop of mine.

6. Who doesn't love effortless, tousled, sexy, beachy waves in the spring and summer time? OGX Moroccan Sea Salt Spray misted into my damp hair and scrunched and my tresses look as if I've been playing on the beach all day. It can also be sprayed lightly into dry, curled hair to encourage those just back from the shore glam locks.

7. I don't always C O (conditioner only) wash my hair but when I do, one of the conditioners I like for the job is OGX Nourishing Coconut Milk Conditioner. Lightweight enough to effectively cleanse my hair, hydrating enough to leave it feeling soft and nicely moisturized, even if I skip a finishing conditioner. Oh! And it smells yummy, too!

8. OGX 02 Gravity Defying and Hydration Lifting Tonic. Sometimes, I just need a little extra volume at my roots! I recently lopped off almost a foot of terribly damaged length and got some layers to help encourage my natural wurls to behave but I still have long, heavy hair that can weigh the top down and leave it looking less than bouncy and bodified. Mist a little of this in at my roots, blow dry while directing my hair up and against my natural parting and hello, extra volume.

9. Hask Macadamia Oil Moisturizing Shine Oil Vial. Three dollars buys me a slender vial with a somewhat annoying stopper of thick, yummy smelling, nourishing, shine making hair oil goodness. A dine sized dollop run through my wet or dry hair and I get to enjoy that softness and shine. If you don't oil your hair, gentle reader, you really need to try it!

10. Elnett Satin Extra Strong Hold Unscented Hairspray. I adore this stuff and I've used it for years. I know that it's a tad spendy for a drugstore hairspray but it works exactly the way I want my hairspray to work. The mist is ultra fine and never spits or drips, it's fast dry and my hair stays in place but still has movement and shine and looks like hair, not a shellacked helmet. I can easily run a comb or a brush through my hair and it washes out without having to use a ton of shampoo or scrubbing my tresses to death. I buy can after can of this stuff. It's just that good.

These are some of my favorite affordable hair care products. Are any of these on your list? What are your favorites? Please do tell, in a comment.

This post is a collaboration with my fellow Makeup Wars bloggers. If you're curious about their budget hair care loves, click the links to their blogs, below. If you liked this post and found it helpful won't you give it a share? Sharing allows more people to see my work and I really appreciate it.

Fashion Flash ~ Spring Has Sprung!

Spring has sprung!


The ladies of Fashion Flash are ready to share our favorite things about spring! Travel. Fashion. Beauty. Wellness. Fitness. Join us as we celebrate the season of renewal in real style.

Before we get started, may I introduce our newest victim member of Fashion Flash? Please say Hi! to Stephanie Louise of Home in High Heels a lifestyle blog. Stephanie Louise also has a fantastic Beauty blog, All Things Beautiful XO.


Love the idea of keeping it all together? Stephanie Louise of Home in High Heels shows you why the KIT planner is a rainbow dream!



Sheila of Painted Ladies shows you how to blend your way to smoky eye shadow success in this easy tutorial.



It's time to celebrate women and this month's The Zoe Report Box of Style does that well. Luxury items all created by and for women. Beauty Info Zone loves the power of this subscription.



Barbara Hannah Grufferman of Best of Everything After 50 wants all single women to get out there and start dating again! Here are her best tips to get ready for some fun!



Deb of No Nonsense Beauty Blog looks into the science of sore feet -- and how to choose beautiful, comfortable shoes.



Inka of Glamour Granny Travels explains why she loves ageing ungracefully.



Shape up outdoors! Get out this spring and try these easy exercises by Certified Exercise Physiologist and Health Coach Mirabai Holland from Moving Free.



Prime Beauty found a wonderful skin care product in StriVectin Active Youth Infusion Serum. It provides tons of moisture and plumps skin for a youthful look.


Sometimes it can be tragedy and sorrow that jettisons you into your second life. That was the case with Donna McDonald and that transformation from technical to romance writer helped with her healing, too.


So you eat Goji berries? Society Wellness gives us ten reasons why we should and if you keep reading, eleven ways to eat them.


Find out how Allison at Never Say Die Beauty removes her makeup and gets her face clean as a whistle in an environmentally - friendlier way with no cleanser or makeup remover with the FaceOff Cloth!



Define Me Audrey is one of six beautiful perfumes with a purpose. This sparkling fresh-floral is a delightful mix of peony, rose and jasmine with a hint of sensual sandalwood. Just the kind of scent I love! Define Me donates one dollar for every bottle sold to She's the First, a non profit organization that uses 100% of donations to provide educational scholarships to girls in developing countries.

I hope that you enjoyed this week's Fashion Flash and please, come back next week to enjoy our e-newsletter.

If you enjoyed this post and found it helpful, would you please give it a share? I really appreciate it.