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Clarisonic: Is It Really Worth It?

I’m no longer a spring chicken, but I have been blessed with good skin. My friends bust on me because I’m the guy at the pool in a huge floppy hat and oversized sunglasses slathering SPF 50 on every square inch of my body and face. I view beach days as trench warfare as I plot the ways I will thwart UVA rays from assaulting my skin. I view overcast days as the sun trying to lull me into a false sense of security, only to zap my precious skin into a wrinkly, damaged mess. In short, preserving my skin has been somewhat of a hobby for me. Ha!

Soap Box Alert: Please always wear SPF 15 or higher in your daily moisturizer, even now, in the throes of winter. There, I’m done.

ImageIf you want to have skin that absorbs expensive treatments properly, you have to make sure your skin breathing well, your pores are clear and it’s clean. Santa brought me a Clarisonic face brush (left, $119 and up) this year because he knows I’m a freak for all things skincare. I was skeptical at first because I thought $100+ for a little facial brush seemed like one of us was getting cleaned out, and it wasn’t me. But then again, Santa doesn’t care about retail prices, so I thought what the hell?

I will be damned if I didn’t see my skin glow within a week.

The trick is to use enough cleanser and water to have a little emulsion. My unit came with a sample of the Clarisonic Cleanser ($25) that foamed up and washed all makeup, dirt and dead skin cells away like a dream. The thing is, there have been skin brushes out there forever and I really didn’t want to like this thing. I wanted to give it a shot, discover it was all hooey, return it to Sephora and put it the money towards some Creme De La Mer ($275) moisturizer. But a better plan emerged: Use brush daily ( twice a day for truly oily skin), moisturize and notice how skin drinks in the cream since there is no yucky dead skin blocking the way, and let the compliments roll in on how much brighter and cleaner my skin looks. You can use any facial cleanser you like with the brush. The difference is that it uses the same technology as the SonicCare toothbrush– vibrating soft bristles, cleanser and water aid in removing makeup, dirt and dead skin. All that is left is truly clean, glowing skin. And that’s what we really want!

Ladies and gentlemen, this is the real deal. Using this regularly will decrease the need for facials, high-end skin creams, and lots of foundation. You will love what this brush will do for you!

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To Red Or Not To Red

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Hi everyone, and thanks for reading my first-ever blog post!  As a makeup artist, I have come across various great products,  I always mean to share my ideas but have committed in 2013 to actually do the sharing!

The Oscars always inspire me with all the fresh looks the starlets sport on that big night.  I was particularly inspired by that Hollywood chameleon, Jessica Chastain!  She’s done a range of looks: all tarted up like a Backwoods Barbie in ” The Help,” grungy and freshly scrubbed in “Zero Dark Thirty,” and then the epitome of glamour on Oscar night.  The biggest beauty move for her on Oscar night was her impeccably applied red lipstick.

Wouldn’t you love to have the perfect red lipstick for you in your beauty arsenal?  I find the color of red as daunting to wear as that golden gown Jessica sported, so it’s best to go with baby steps.  My favorite intro to red is Burt’s Bees Tinted Lip Balm in Red Dahlia, found at the corner CVS or Walgreen’s ($7).

There are two ways to wear it….

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1) Dressed down.  Clean face or minimal makeup, lip balm and no pencil required.  Its the perfect go-to lip balm because it’s sheer, light and gives just the right amount of color.  Have one in your purse or gym bag at all times.  I mean, if you’re one to slap on some lip balm and go, why not use one that actually does more for you than make you smell like a high school boy? ( I’m talking to you, Carmex.)

2) Dressed up.  The whole enchilada– foundation, concealer, powder, neutral eyes, blush and Red Dahlia with carefully chosen lip pencils.  Here’s how:

Apply your makeup, saving lips for last.  Be sure that the area around your lips is cleaned up- blemishes concealed and lightly powdered.  Apply the balm as usual and line your lips with a neutral pencil, like MAC lip liner ($15) in Spice or Whirl, both lining and shading the lip lightly to make the balm more opaque. Blend together using a lip brush or your own lips mashed together back and forth, paying attention not to mess up the lip line.  Finally, add a little bit of a truer red pencil– I like MAC lip liner pencils in Half-Red, or Redd— and lightly line and add some to the inside lip area, blending as you go.  Stop.  Look at it.  Too red?  Blot and add neutral pencil. Not red enough?  Add more red pencil and balm.  Remember, you know more than you give yourself credit for!  Stop when you love it!

Soon I will share my favorite true red lipstick, and the secret to red lips that don’t bleed beyond your borders!  But for now, head out and grab this hard-working gem.

Until next time…

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