Sunday, December 27, 2009

This Week's Sales:
It's Semi-Annual Sale Time!

OK folksies, here's your sales fix for this week. I'm about 3/4 asleep at the moment, so you'll have to forgive any typos or off-topic ramblings. Fortunately for my bank account and my sleep schedule, there aren't a ton of sales this week, though many sites are having year-end "blow out" sales that may or may not contain beauty booty. Here's what I do know:

HauteLook has a couple of heavy hitters this week, starting with Kevyn Aucoin this Monday, December 28th. On Wednesday the 30th the site hosts Becca followed by aMENity (the brand's typography, not mine!) on Friday, January 1st, 2010.

The only other news in on-line beauty sales is Cake Beauty and Clark's Botanicals over at The Fairest, and The Skinny's return on the 30th when they'll be showcasing MBeze.

I would be remiss if I didn't mention that two GIANTS of the retail world are currently having huge sales in their brick-and-mortar stores. Bath & Body Works started their Semi-Annual Sale this past week, and in an unheard of move, Victoria's Secret will be starting their winter Semi-Annual Sale tomorrow at 8am! Victoria's Secret has traditionally started SAS in January; I'd take the early start as a sign that the holiday season wasn't as big as they'd hoped, and I can tell you with comfortable authority (I was a manager with the company's beauty division for 5 years) that the deals will be KILLER!

For those of you who don't usually shop there, be aware that some Bath & Body Works and Victoria's Secret stores have at times carried prestige vendors like Frederic Fekkai, Jaqua, Nars, Vincent Longo and more- some still do, but those that don't anymore are likely to have most of it on clearance. If your store doesn't carry 3rd party, don't fret: both stores have great in-house lines like BBW's Wexler skincare and VS makeup. Due to a re-launch of Victoria's Secret's makeup line that took place this summer, I can promise you're likely to see great deals on makeup in the old packaging (I got a bunch at the last sale for 75% off!) For my suggestions on what to snatch up from VS, check out this post, and have fun shopping!

Monday, December 21, 2009

This Week's Sales:
Warren-Tricomi, Lotus, Baby Quasar and more!

For the week of Christmas, beauty sales are few and far between on the exclusive sites. I guess they know how responsible we all are- who hasn't had their shopping done for weeks, right?

::chirp chirp::

While it may be too late to take advantage of the sales for purposes relating to giving (shipping on these sites aren't exactly the speediest) you can still receive plenty. Consider them make-up gifts for the reindeer sweaters, tube-sock value packs and stale cookies! Now get to it!

Gilt Groupe starts the week with Warren-Tricomi haircare, which actually started Sunday (my bad, I was lost in the Hanuchristmakkah triangle.) You have until Tuesday at 11am EST to peruse the selection, at which point Baby Quasar takes over as the last scheduled beauty sale on the site this week.

Other sales this week are both Monday offerings: HauteLook will feature Lotus Pure Organics and Billion Dollar Babes has Alison Raffaele. Make sure you're following me on twitter in case any surprise sales pop up (and because you miss me so much between posts, huh?)

Of course, the folks at The Fairest always have a bounty of beauty to choose from. Coming up: Mojo Cosmetics, Enzo Milano, Skin Nutrition, Clarks Botanicals and Cake Beauty.

The Skinny is on hiatus right now, to return on December 30 with MBeze Natural Skin Care and Cosmetics. Until then, take care, keep warm, and have a great what-ever denominational yule time gift-giving (or non-gift giving as the case may be) holiday. Or not.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Product Review:
UPDATE on Glowelle Beauty Drink Mix

Ah, wondrous technology! After tweeting about my previous review of Glowelle, I was contacted by a representative of the company, who shared some information with me, and generously offered to send me the mix in the other flavor option, Pomegranate Lychee.

Since one of the major cons from my review was flavor, I was pleased to accept Glowelle's offer, and also learn that the company is working on flavor issues in the drink mix. I was also told that they are working on the calorie issue. Though at 50 calories per serving Glowelle is not exactly a Twinkie-in-a-bottle, those are calories I generally would prefer to use elsewhere in my diet.

Upon receiving the Pomegranate Lychee flavor, I immediately mixed it into 16oz of ice water, noting that it had the same heavy mineral smell as the Raspberry Jasmine that I'd originally tried. I braced myself and took a sip, expecting the same metallic, earthy taste. To my surprise, it was actually quite enjoyable. Whereas I had found the Raspberry flavor overly sweet, the Pomegranate had a bit more tartness, with the nice, slightly fragrant finish of lychee. My first thought, in all honesty? Why in the world do they even make the other flavor?

My original rating of Glowelle was 4.5 out of 10. After tasting the Pomegranate Lychee flavor, I would raise that to a 6.5 out of 10. In my original review, I wondered if a better flavor would convert me into a daily user. I have to say, my reservations about the price would still prohibit that. $112 for a 30 day supply still seems quite steep for a vitamin supplement. On the other hand, I once supported $5.00 a day Starbucks habit that really puts the $3.73 Glowelle price* into perspective. Having said that, I'm hopeful that Glowelle may show up again soon on one of the many members only sale sites. When Gilt Groupe recently featured them, prices were slashed about 50%, moving the drink into more approachable territory. Since I am curious to see if the supplements produce any long-term results, I would definitely be tempted by a lower price, and would encourage anyone else who is curious to take the opportunity should it arise.

*Price arrived at by averaging Glowelle's most economical option, the 30-day stick pack kit, assuming the recommended one stick pack per day use.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Eye Brow 101: The Ideal Shape

The perfect brow is a bit like the comfortable stiletto. It's rumoured to exist, but you could easily spend your entire life trying to find it with little success.

Brows are probably the most important overlooked feature on the face. They frame the eye; providing structure and balance. The right brow shape can not only make they eyes seem larger, and more lifted, it can actually change the appearance of the face itself. A round brow can soften an angular face. Flat, shorter brows can help those with long faces look softer and rounder. Though it's important to work with the shape you were given, there are a few simple guidelines that can help you make the most of what you've got.

The easiest way to figure out the proportions of your brows is to grab a pencil or makeup brush and use it as a visual guide. The following picture illustrates the "ideal" brow shape. Universally flattering, it can be worn by a variety of face shapes to create a cleaner, more groomed, brighter eye. Here's how to get them, in three simple steps:

Step One
The Inner Corner- this is where your brow should begin. Using your pencil, lay it against the nostril on the same side as the eye you're measuring. The pencil should go straight up, intersect the inner corner of your eye, and go up onto your brow. The point at which the pencil lies on your brow is where your eye brow should begin. If you're coming up short, consider filling in a bit with a brow pencil. If you're coming in any closer toward the other brow, grab your tweezers and pull the errant hairs one by one until you're at your desired point.

Step Two
The High Point of the arch. Keeping your pencil against your nostril as before, angle it so that the pencil goes across your eye to the outside of your pupil, and over on to the brow. The part where the pencil intersects your brow should be the highest point of your brow. The area between the inner corner (Step 1) and the highpoint of the arch (Step 2) should all be pretty much the same thickness, it is at the high point that the brow should begin to slope down and slightly taper off.

Step Three
The Outer Corner- again, start with the pencil along your nostril. Angle it toward your temple so that the pencil lines up with the outer corner of your eye and reaches outward. The point where the pencil touches your brow is where it should end. As you can see, the model in the picture falls a bit short, as do I. I like to use an angled brush and a brow powder to extend the line of my brow a bit.

So, there you have it. In parting, there is one thing I feel like I need to mention. I poured through several hundred stock images searching for a model with perfect brows to use for the diagram above, and what I found was that NO ONE, including the model I used, has perfect brows. Technically, this model's brows are too close together, and not long enough. Does that mean they're not beautiful, or that she looks hopelessly out-of-proportion? Of course not. Remember- guidelines are just that, follow them as closely as your shape allows, and take the tweezing slow!

Monday, December 7, 2009

This Week's Sales:
Stila, Dylan's Candy Bar, Pur Minerals, LORAC, and more...

If you have any beauty junkies on your list, HauteLook is the place to be this week, with tons of beauty sales. Monday, December 7th starts out with a double feature: Emjoi, and Stila. Tuesday the site hosts Armani Fragrances, with Dylan's Candy Bar and LORAC on Wednesday. We have a bit of time to breathe (or visit other sites!) Thursday, but the discount mayhem resumes on Friday with Bio-Theraputic.

In other news, check out Rue La La on Tuesday, December 8th when they feature MD Skincare. They'll also be having a "Gifts She Craves" boutique on Thursday the 10th, I'll be checking that out to see if they really have what beauty junkies like us crave. By the way, if you don't already belong to the Rue, now's the time to sign up- until December 24th, they're giving all new members a $10 credit (plus a 10-spot for me when you make your first purchase, so we all win!)

Also on Tuesday, Gilt Groupe features Anthousa Fragrances. I'm not content that that's the only beauty sale that they'll be having, make sure you're following me on Twitter for the latest of up-to-now updates, plus a whole bunch of other stuff (spoiler alert: I'm a real person, and I tweet about more than beauty. But also, I tweet a lot about beauty :) I should also add that Friends and Family sales have been running fast and furious in beauty land, and have been popping up way to often for me to detail here. Another great reason to follow me on Twitter.

At Billion Dollar Babes this week, the Click & Gift continues, accompanied on Wednesday December 9th by a designer fragrance sale, and a visit from DermaNew on Friday the 11th.

On Thursday, Editor's Closet has Seduna, Swiss Care Treatment. If you're not a member, CLICK HERE for a personal invite from me!

The Fairest was silly with sales last week, several unlisted brands popped up, and they actually had five or six different brands running at once. Check them out this week when the offer up Beaute Cosmetics, Elave Dermo-Cosmetic, Whish, Pur Minerals, Raw Essentials, Air Repair and Avocate.

Finally, over on The Skinny, Tammy Fender Skincare finishes up and Lisa Hoffman takes over at the crack of dawn (6am) this Wednesday, December 16th.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Quick Tip:
Don't Pluck Amok!

To create (and maintain) the perfect brow shape, try penciling in your preferred shape before you tweeze. If you're uncertain about the shape, stop by a cosmetic counter and ask an associate to pencil them in for you. Also, stay tuned for my next post: a quick primer on brow shaping (complete with an easy to follow diagram!)

It's a good idea to make sure the rest of your eye is clean, you don't want to introduce any ickyness when you tweeze. Stand back from the mirror and draw in your brows quite heavily- since this is an aid to shaping and not for wearing outside of the house, you'll want to be able to see where you put the pencil. When you close in on your mirror, you'll be able to see exactly where you need to groom- only pull hairs that are NOT covered by your pencil.

If your brows have never been shaped, or are very grown out, follow the same technique as above, but use a white or nude pencil to draw over the hairs you'll pull. This will give you a more clear idea of what the shape will look like, and will keep you from over tweezing!
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