Thursday, December 24, 2009

My Update and My Fave Moisturizers

I know I have been absent for a couple weeks and I apologize, but my life has been a whirlwind recently! I just came to India, where I will be attending my cousin's wedding soon, and I am also going to be getting my wedding outfits. I feel like the business in my life won't end until after my wedding, which is good in a way cuz I'd much rather be busy than bored.

Since it is winter back in the states, I put together a little review of my fave moisturizers right now:

This is part of the moisturizing collection at Victorias Secret, and is the Soft Embrace fragrance. It has shea butter in it, yet is non-greasy and feels soooo soft and silky. It provides moisture the entire day and the fragrance is not too overpowering. I highly recommend this one, as it can be used year-round, but I have a feeling it is limited edition and won't last too long.

This body butter from Bath and Body Works is super duper thick, but dries super duper quickly! It feels like it could be greasy, but it is not, and it provides great hydration. Since it is thick, you do end up using more, so you will definitely go through this product quite fast.

I am in love with this fragrance from the Body Shop. It is called Black Velvet Apricot and was part of the holiday collection. It's Body Shop body butter so you know it's quality and works great. This is one to stock up on if you find it (on sale of course) at your local store.

My new favorite addiction, Korres, has these body milks, which are thin lotions. They seem liquidy, but they provide excellent hydration that lasts all day long. This one is in Jasmine, and is very light and you can use any perfume over it. This is a great product for year round use, and will definitely be in my constant rotation of lotions.

What are your fave body moisturizers right now?

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

15 Minutes of Beauty Fame

Hello lovelies! Want to check out my 15 minutes of fame? Head on over here to Temptalia, where I wrote a guest post of how to go from a day to evening look in 5 minutes.

There are a couple full face pics on the post, but if you want to take a closer look at what I did to the eyes, here ya go:

Day Eyes: UDPP, Arena eyeshadow on lid, Cork eyeshadow in the crease, Black Russian Pearlglide liner on upper lash line, and Estee Lauder More than Mascara on lashes.

Evening Eyes: Added Sketch eyeshadow in outer corner and Feline Kohl Power pencil on waterline.

In other news, I have been super busy with my wedding planning ventures, not to mention I leave for India in less than a week, and I am also helping a friend with MBA application essays. Life is super crazy right now but it's great to have your support and look to you wonderful readers to keep me connected with beauty and help me de-stress. =)

Monday, December 21, 2009

Koh Gen Do Oriental Plants Essence Review

In my constant search for my holy grail skin care routine, I ventured into the world of Japanese skin care and tried the Koh Gen Do Oriental Plants Essence. This serum is supposed to hydrate, firm, and provide balance to the skin, and contains a laundry list of natural and botanical ingredients. As I have mentioned before, I am on a green product kick, so naturally I was excited to try this out.

The texture of the serum is very liquidy, so it is easy to spread across the skin, and you don't need very much at all. That is a good thing, considering this 1.35oz bottle costs $107. Pricey, yes, but it will last you a loooong time.

In terms of results, I used this everyday for 3 weeks (refer to some previous posts to learn my philosophy on how long I need to use skin care to tell if I like it or not). I did not have any adverse reaction, but I also did not see anything amazing. My skin did feel moisturized, it did feel firm, and it was not dull. I still did not have that glow that I like, so I was not completely loving this product. I have a feeling this is one of those products you have to using for an extensive period of time to see results, so I am tempted to keep using it. Let's see how that goes, since I am such a product jumper.

Kajal Couture Rating: C

Kajal Couture Overall Opinion: The product itself is moisturizing, absorbs quickly into the skin, and feels great on. In terms of results, I did not get what I expected, but I have hope this will do more if used regularly for a longer period of time. It is very expensive though so I am not sure that I would repurchase unless I saw some miraculous change in my skin.

As a side note, when I received the product in the mail, I wasn't sure exactly how to use it, whether I had to rub thoroughly into the skin, or just let it absorb naturally. As you can see below, the instructions didn't help because they were all in Japanese. Thankfully, Koh Gen Do now has a website that provides English directions on how to use each product.

This product was provided to my by PR. For additional information, please refer to my Disclaimer.


So I am sure many of you have seen a lot of beauty websites advertise their Disclaimers. I too have created one, and will refer to it from now on in all posts that contain a product review. Here it is:


All thoughts, opinions, and reviews expressed in this blog are my own and based entirely on my own personal feelings and experiences. Occasionally, PR firms will send me products to review, but I do not in any shape or form get paid to review the products, so rest assured that I will always provide my honest opinion in any review, regardless of whether I purchase a product or if it was provided to me. My priority is to provide you with an honest account of my experiences and feelings about a product. In addition, if products were provided to me for review purposes, it will be mentioned in the blog post. Otherwise, all other products are purchased with my own money.

Any links embedded in my blog posts are not affiliate links, they are simply a reference to where you can obtain more information. I do not get paid if you click on the links or purchase any products. This blog is a passion of mine and I do not blog to make money. I do it because I love beauty products and I love meeting other wonderful people interested in!!!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Manish Arora Makeup for Spring/Summer 2010

I've been feeling a lil down and out today, so I've just been surfing the web this evening and just having some alone time to myself. My soon-to-be mother-in-law (MIL) is not the nicest person in the world (surprise, surprise...I mean, does anyone really like their MIL?) and she is causing some drama for my fiance and I.

Seems like a good weight-loss technique, yeah?

Anyhoo, I was surfing the MAC Pro website and noticed that they already have the Spring/Summer 2010 trend looks from the runway shows. The winter has just started here in California (yes, 40 degree temperature is winter for us), so I am still clinging to my smoky eyes and dark lips, but since one of the trend looks was from Indian designer Manish Arora (he did the Manish Arora for MAC collection last fall, that sold out online in like 30 seconds), I just had to do a post on that.

Here is how you can achieve his minimalist look, per the MAC Pro website:

"Keeping the make-up quite bare the emphasis is placed on pearly skin texture and nude features. I wanted the balance created by the understated makeup and over-the-top face accessory to have a futuristic feel." - Kabuki

M·A·C Pro Water Base Mixing Medium and Pro White Frost Pigment - applied in a "c" shape to the outer corners of the eyes.

Studio Sculpt Foundation- applied as a base to the face as a whole and then in darker shades under the cheekbones, and down the sides of the nose to contour.
M·A·C Pro Water Base Mixing Medium and Pro White Frost Pigment - placed down the center of the nose, on the chin and over the cupid's bow of the lips as a highlight.

M·A·C Pro Lip Erase in Dim- applied to the lips to block the natural coloring of the lips.
M·A·C Pro Water Base Mixing Medium and Pro White Frost Pigment - applied to the center of the lips as a highlight.

It's so non-traditional that I am tempted to try this out myself just to see how it looks. What are you faves for spring and summertime?

Aveda Enbrightenment Brightening Correcting Serum Review and a Drugstore Deal

I had a sample of the Aveda Enbrightenment Brightening Correcting Serum so I decided to actually try it out, since I have been on my natural product kick. My sample was decent sized so it lasted about 2 weeks. I know that is not long enough to determine if it was really brightening my skin or not, but 2 weeks is enough for me to notice whether I want to keep using a product or if I am ready to move on.

After 2 weeks, I was ready to move on. Mainly because I did not like the sticky feeling that I felt every time I applied this on my skin. The serum does absorb quickly, so the stickiness doesn't last too long, but I still didn't like it, even if it was just a few seconds.

I did not have any adverse reaction, like sudden breakouts, but I also did not see any improvement of any other type of positive effect. Usually, even if I don't see a reduction in signs of aging, or improvement in brightness, if a product is effective, my skin will start to glow within just a few days of using it. I did not get that glow from this, so I am now on to the next product.

Kajal Couture Rating: C

Kajal Couture Overall Opinion: Thumbs down for the stickiness factor, thumbs up for being Aveda and using natural products, but it didn't do anything positive for me.

So I stopped by Rite Aid (a drugstore) today to pick up something, and of course I had to stop by the makeup aisles to do a quick walk-by, and I noticed that a ton of makeup from all different brands is 75% off right now! I think they are products/colors that are being discontinued, but I saw some great nail polishes for under $1, pretty eyeshadows in all different colors (yes, colors that you could actually use, not just the funky leftovers), and some nice eyeliners (I was tempted by the Loreal and Cover Girl colored liners) and lipsticks on sale. If you are interested in trying something new, I recommend you stop by your local Rite Aid and check out the stock. You might find something you really like!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Lush-ious Skin for the Wintertime

For months I have been reading about other bloggers' addictions to Lush products, how some of them have totally transformed their beauty routines and how fabulous and effective they are. So you can imagine my curiosity and desire to test out the brand for myself. Therefore, last month, I trekked down to the nearest Lush store (half an hour away mind you), spent over an hour sniffing and staring and rubbing, and finally walked out with some goodies of my very own.
This first one is by far my favorite. It is a chunk of the Heavenly Bodies Buttercream. It is 20% soap and 80% moisturizer so you can use it in the shower as a combined body cleanser and body lotion. This one smells like chocolate and cocoa combined with some heavenly floral scent that I can't pinpoint. This stuff melts easily when in contact with water, so I used it by cutting small slivers, with each one lasting 3-4 days. This stuff is creamy and smooth and provides buttery moisture, without feeling greasy. The moisture actually lasts long after you towel dry, and I even think its more effective than most in-shower moisturizers that you get in bottles. This, as with most Lush products, are quite expensive so I see this as a winter time treat, especially great during the holidays when you want to pamper yourself and delight in soft skin.

Kajal Couture Rating: A

Kajal Couture Overall Opinion: Pricey, but smells great and is a fabulous moisturizer so I think it is a great way to treat yourself to something special!

This next one is the massage bar in Heavanilli. You can use massage bars by rubbing them between your hands for a few seconds, then giving a special someone a massage, or just rubbing the moisture on your own skin as a moisturizer. Since this is intended for massages, it is a bit greasy and doesn't absorb into the skin quickly. It smells like sweet vanilla and jasmine and I love using this as a moisturizer because the effect is long lasting, and in the wintertime, the greasiness actually feels a little nice because the cold weather can make my skin crackle.

Kajal Couture Rating: B

Kajal Couture Overall Opinion: I like the moisturizing effects, but I tend to lean towards fast-absorbing products. The smell is great and this would be a good massage product, but really, how often do you give people massages?

When I walked into the Lush store, the sales assistant had me try this Soft Coeur massage bar and I instantly knew I had to have it! It smells like chocolate and honey, and I have to be careful not to accidently take a bite because it smells soooo delicious! I absolutely recommend this one.

Kajal Couture Rating: B+

Kajal Couture Overall Opinion: Same overall opinion as the other massage bar, but I gave a little higher rating because of the divine smell!

Finally, this is the Honey Bee bath bomb. Now, I haven't actually used this yet, because it is one of those products that you are supposed to use whole and just drop in your shower and watch it fizz and enjoy the soothing, fragrant properties of honey and aloe vera. I have heard of people cutting these with a knife so they can use them a couple times. That is something I will try, because I feel like having a $6 item get used up in 1 shower is just not worth it for me. For that much, I can buy a whole bottle of body wash that will last a couple months!

My final thoughts are that I appreciate the fragrances and the intention of Lush products, but they are just too expensive for me to include them as regular items in my beauty routine. I think they are a great treat every once in awhile and I may pick up a buttercream every so often. The massage bars are also good because they will last a long time so you do get a good amount of usage for your buck. I also really like that the products are natural and handmade, but as of late I have been finding the natural Korres products to be a bit more practical for me. On that note, keep a watch for some Korres product reviews coming up....I have been falling in love with a lot of them!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Smooth Legs for Santa.....Giveaway Time!

Several months ago during the summertime (in the US) I reviewed the Schick Intuition Razor. I must admit that in the colder months I don't shave as often, but with all the holiday parties right now, it means wearing lots of dresses, and in turn, smooth, hair-free legs. That means it's time for a giveaway!

I am giving away 3 Schick Intuition razors in 3 different colors/designs as pictured below:

You get two chances to enter. All you have to do is:

1. Comment telling me which color you want, and be sure to leave me your email address.

2. Follow me. Update: No need to follow me on Twitter, just follow me by subsrcibing to the blog using the Follow Me feature on the right hand side toolbar. If you are already a follower, you will automatically receive one chance to win! =)
Easy as that! The deadline for entering is Sunday Dec 13th, at 11:59pm EST. Good luck y'all!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Thanks But I'll Pass on the Alligator Skin - Boscia Oil-Free Daily Hydration Moisturizer Review

I got a sample of the Boscia Oil-Free Daily Hydration SPF 15 moisturizer so I thought I would try it out. This was my first experience with Boscia, and I'm sure they have some great products, but this is not one of them.

In terms of hydration, this was fine, it is pretty liquidy so it blends on the skin well, and you don't need a lot to cover your face. It also feels lightweight and would be great in the summertime. Even as we are transitioning to winter, it was able to keep my skin moisturized. Until I applied makeup that is. I noticed that when I wore this moisturizer, as soon as I applied foundation, the foundation would start to pill up and it looked like I had dry, flaky skin. I tried it with several different brands and formulas of foundations and had the same problem every time, so I knew it was this moisturizer causing the problem. I have dry skin to begin with, so perhaps this is not an issue for those with oily skin. I'm just glad this was a sample and I didn't spend anything on it, because if I did, this would definitely be going back.

Kajal Couture Rating: C-

Kajal Couture Overall Opinion: It's fine (not great) at providing moisture when worn alone, but when topped with foundation, your skin will appear flaky, and who wants to walk around with flaky skin? This is considered a simple moisturizer because it doesn't claim to do anything grand, but it does have SPF in it. If you are looking for a simple moisturizer, there are much better and cheaper drugstore brands like Olay and Aveeno that have similar moisturizers that won't give you alligator skin.

Have any of you tried anything by Boscia? Is there anything you do or do not recommend?

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Bliss Body Wash and Lotion - Super Deal at Costco

I know I have mentioned this before, but I LURVE Costco!!! For those of you not on the West Coast, Costco was the first warehouse shopping club, initially called Price Club. It is a large store in a warehouse, where they sell large quantities, or bulk quantities of everything from toilet paper to soda to fruits to computers and TVs (the computers and TVs are sold individually, not in bulk). The prices are insanely good, but the thing is you have to have a membership to shop at the store. Membership averages around $50, but is soooo worth it! Now they have many different warehouse clubs like Sam's Club, BJs, etc, but I have a Costco membership since it is close to my home. Anyhoo, I don't go very often, but when I do, I ALWAYS take a stroll down their health and beauty aisles. I have seem some great things like MAC eyeshadow, Lancome Definicils, and Shisheido skin care, all at discounted prices of course. On a recent trip to Costco, I saw the following: This duo includes a large 16floz Bubbling Body Wash, and a 6.7oz Body Lotion, and this set was only $15!!!! They actually have it online too, but online it is $25, which is still a good price for Bliss products, but why pay $10 more if you don't have to? In fact, there was a instant $5 rebate when I saw it (the rebate is now over, I think), so I got this set for $10. That's about the same price as picking up a Bath and Body Works shower gel and lotion during their semi-annual sales. SCORE!!!!

Now, the thing is, when I got home, I wanted to know how much both products retail at. Unfortunately, these products are not on the Bliss website. Henceforth, this leads me to believe that Bliss created these as special items for the holiday season, specifically for Costco. This is the case with a lot of brands/companies....they make special products and colors specifically to be sold at Costco. The other possibility is that these are not real Bliss products, however I HIGHLY doubt that, since I know that a LOT of research goes into what gets sold at Costco and they would never sell fakes. Companies compete to have their products sold at Costco. Since it is such a popular store, they have the ability to be extremely selective about what products are sold in the store. So, until I have reason to doubt it, I am sticking with my first theory that this set was specially created for Costco, and y'all better run out and get it, cuz for this price, it's going to sell out!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Stila Warehouse Sale in LA - This Sat

This Sat, December 5th, Stila is having a Winter Warehouse Sale!!! Products will marked down 50%-80% off, and there is a $600 limit. Check out the flyer below for more info.

If you are in LA, will you be attending? If so, do let me know what you haul!!!

Meeeow! A Smoky Cat Eye

Hey lovelies! With the Thanksgiving holiday I was falling behind on my blogging, but I have just been so busy!! I had a wonderful long weekend and am back to work! Here is a cat eye look I did the other day just for fun:

How was your Thanksgiving? I am pressed for time right now so I can't write much, but if you want to know how I did this look or want to know what I used, let me know in the comments!


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