Hot for the Holidays

As the holiday season shifts into high gear, so does the urge to polish up your look. With all the holiday parties and family dinners you have planned, it can be hard to find time to get yourself looking head-to-toe spectacular. Here are some shortcuts from Mechele Wilson, licensed esthetician and educator.

1. Kick-Start Your Exercise Routine. Start increasing your normal workout routine by 30 minutes and throw some strength training into the mix. Sweat helps your body eliminate toxins that can clog pores, resulting in pimples and blemishes. Exercise also increases oxygen and blood flow to the skin, leaving your complexion with a beautiful, natural glow.

2. Sleep Away Those Dark Circles. With all the late night festivities, your body can become fatigued and slow down your circulatory system. Ensure that you are getting 8 to 9 hours of sleep to help with the appearance of dark circles and pasty skin.

3. Keep Your Smile White. You will want to avoid any food or drinks with dark pigments, as they have the greatest potential to stain teeth. Culprits include: red wine, coffee, tea, blueberries, soy sauce, balsamic vinegar, tomato sauce, and grape and cranberry juice. All of these foods have their benefits, so here is how to combat the downside of their staining ways:

· When you eat staining foods, keep a glass of water handy. Sipping after every couple of bites will help decrease the chance of staining.

· Never skip a bedtime brush, and brush your teeth as soon as possible after a staining meal.

· Add stain-fighting foods to your meals. Apples, celery, and carrots act as a natural stain remover, while greens such as spinach, broccoli, and lettuce create a film over your teeth that acts as a barrier against staining.

4. Achieve Head-Turning Hair. To revive your hair and return it to its youthful, healthy state, deep condition once a week. Use a treatment suited to your hair type and make sure it is safe to use for color/chemically treated hair. First, wet a hand towel and place it in the microwave for 1-2 minutes. Be careful not to burn yourself. Completely coat hair with deep conditioner and wrap the towel securely around your head. Leave the treatment in for about 15 minutes. Wash and follow with your leave in conditioner and/or color protectant spray.

5. Get Glowing Skin. Rejuvenate your skin and get a HydraFacial™. This must-have treatment helps detoxify, rejuvenate, and protect your skin, leaving it extremely hydrated and supple. Unlike other treatments, the HydraFacial™ cleanses, exfoliates, extracts, and hydrates all while introducing antioxidants, hyaluronic acid, and other nutrients to the skin. To maintain your results, use the Daily Essentials™ kit, which provides the same performing ingredients used in the treatment. This quick and effective treatment will provide you with instant results that will earn you compliments all season long.

PATYKA Biokaliftin Remarquable Cleansing Oil Review

Deeply rooted in harmonizing beauty, responsibility, pleasure and efficacy, PATYKA has successfully created unique formulas that redefine what it means to feel beautiful. Their botanical and apothecary inspired skin care and body care products incorporate ancient formulas coupled with a modern sensibility and global consciousness.

A fusion of French expertise and an aesthetically pleasing approach give the user an enjoyable experience while they care for their well-being and skin. PATYKA provides two lines: Biokaliftin, for anti-aging, and Absolis, for combination and dry skin. All products are made with natural ingredients blended to perfection for desirable, effective formulations.

Our skin is usually most vulnerable during the fall and winter seasons, due to the brisk air and wind chills. Many of us will experience dry, itchy skin. What worked for us during the warmer months will not necessarily work for our skin during the colder months. So you'll need to keep your skin up to par by taking extra good care of it. It's most likely that you'll need to change your skincare routine to prevent dull, dry skin. The best way to do this is opt for heavier, creamier skincare products.

I'm hardly a fan of using oil of any kind on my face since my skin has a mind of its own. It can be clean and clear for weeks, and other times it is hard to handle after the least little breakout. Of course, I was a little hesitant at using the PATYKA Biokaliftin Remarquable Cleansing Oil ($75) since it's a cleansing oil, after all. I'm glad that I gave it a chance, though.

I can't vouch for all cleansing oils, but I haven't had any issues with the PATYKA Biokaliftin Remarquable Cleansing Oil, even with unpredictable skin. Removing make-up, especially eye make-up, was sometimes a trying experience with other cleansers, yet this cleanser removes make-up flawlessly and effortlessly. It also doesn't irritate my eye area when removing eye make-up. Another that I like is that there is hardly any need for me to follow-up with a moisturizer, because this product keeps my skin soft and supple enough. The only thing I'd change is the price. Otherwise, my skin is a happy camper!

Disclosure: The product(s) in this review was provided to the reviewer for keeps and the purpose of writing a review. This in no way effects the quality of the review provided. No monetary exchange occurred in exchange for the writing of the review. The views expressed in this review are strictly that of the reviewer. All reviews provided here are the work of the reviewer and remain completely unbiased.

Tarte's Holiday 2012 Collection Review

Tarte's Holiday 2012 Collection is now available, ranging in prices $16 - $54. This includes the Big Thrill Color Collection, Carried Away Collector’s Set with Adventurer Bag, Fantastic Foursome Amazonian Clay 12-hour Blush Set, For the Love of Lipgloss 15-Piece Maracuja Lipgloss Collector's Set, Eye Catchers 6 Piece smolderEYES with Skinny smolderEYES Collector's Set, Girl Meets Gloss 5 Piece Maracuja Gloss Collector's Set, Statement Lips 5 Piece LipSurgence Collector's Set, Picture Perfect Curler and Deluxe Lights, Camera, Lashes! 4-in-1 Mascara, and the Stand Outs Limited Edition Best-Seller Kit.

Exclusively sold at Ulta, the Big Thrill Limited-Edition Color Collection ($48 at Ulta) comes in jewelry box-esque packaging with beauty overload. It boasts 16 of Tarte's signature square eye shadows infused with Amazonian clay in an array of fresh colors, three of Tarte's award winning and best selling Amazonian clay 12-hour blushes in new shades, three vitamin lip glosses, and a "look" card that will help you achieve the most desirable look.

I don't believe I've come across any other eyeshadow brand that is highly pigmented and rich as theirs. I love that the shades are shimmery and have a silky texture. The colors are not eccentric in the least, making them extremely wearable for everyday. My only gripe is that I wish that the lighter colors (those are the colors that I wear more) had stronger staying power, so a lid primer is definitely essential.

The colors that are included in this palette are: Exquisite Emerald, Rush of Gold, Go for the Green, Clay Crush, Jump for Juniper, Shooting Star, Next Level Lilac, Pumped About Purple, Intergalactic Metallic, Pop of Pink, Silver Burst, Amazed by Amethyst, Cloud 9, Brilliant Bronze, Giant Peach, and Totally Taupe.

As for favorites, I adore the Go for the Green, a springy olive green and the Intergalactic Metallic, a shimmery gunmetal grey.

The second compartment includes a bronzer (Park Avenue Princess), highlighter (Angelic), and 2 blushes (Thrilled and Curious). I haven't really been wearing much blush lately, but I love that their blush is sheer, blendable, natural looking, and comes in colors that will complement any skin tone. I really like the Thrilled, the third blush (featured in the picture above), which is a shimmery light pink that looks good on my fair skin tone.

Lastly, the third compartment contains three different shades of lip gloss - Apple-a-Day, Strawberry Sensation, and Abra-Cad-Apricot. Created to nourish, moisturize, and rejuvenate the lips; these shades are sheer, yet provide enough color to indicate that they are there. This set is slightly sticky, though.

The Girl Meets Gloss 5 Piece Maracuja Gloss Collector's Set includes an eclectic mix of colors that are milky, opaque, or translucent. One lip gloss normally sells for $21, but you'll receive all five (Bubbly, Chic, Curious, Sparks, Preppy) for just $34.50! That's an unbelievably crazy deal for a set that's valued at $105.

I hate the way lip gloss initially dispenses, because it takes two dozen times to get anything out! However, I love all of the colors, but the Sparks and Bubbly are my top favorites. They're also a little sticky, but I love the colors enough to overlook this!

This set will be making its exclusive launch on QVC in time for the holidays.

Tarte Cosmetics is sold at their web-site, Ulta, QVC, and Sephora. You can connect with them via Pinterest, Google+, Facebook, and Twitter.

Disclosure: The product(s) in this review was provided to the reviewer for keeps and the purpose of writing a review. This in no way effects the quality of the review provided. No monetary exchange occurred in exchange for the writing of the review. The views expressed in this review are strictly that of the reviewer. All reviews provided here are the work of the reviewer and remain completely unbiased.
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