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Friday, September 26, 2014

September Birchbox Review

I finally got my Birchbox this month! Absolutely digging the new box design to celebrate their 4th anniversary- it's fresh and the colors pop so this box will be a keeper. ( hoping all boxes in the future will have special designs actually.)

I got 7 different samples this month so super happy about that!
Here's what I got:
Atelier Cologne Vanille Insensée Cologne Absolue- I actually tried their Orange Sanguine scent back more than 2 years ago in my Birchbox, so glad I got another scent. Smells yummy!
TOCCA Crema da Mano Luxe - Hand Cream super rich and creamy..
R+Co BEL AIR Smoothing Shampoo & Conditioner- I got this as my bonus extras. These sample packets will be great for travel
Harvey Prince Ageless Liquid Loofah Last month, I tried their body lotion and adore the grapefruit scent! It smells like heaven and it's invigorating to smell
Shiseido Ultimune Power Infusing Concentrate my sample choice for the month!!
Pixi by Petra Breath of Fresh Air Exclusive Lip Balm Birchbox gave me the shade, Honey Nectar and it's the perfect nude. It's completely wearable for everyday and really moisturizing.

This is one of the best boxes I have gotten so far.. I was actually looking at my history of Birchboxes.. lots of samples I had to go through but I really liked everything I received. Can't wait to keep using this.. I'm already excited about October!

Friday, September 19, 2014

Dermalogica Dynamic Skin Recovery SPF50 Review

I'm a huge fan of Dermalogica so you can imagine my enthusiasm when iFabbo offered their Dynamic Skin Recovery moisturizer to try. 

This anti-aging product also helps protect you skin from harmful UV rays with SPF of 50. This creamy moisturizer feels like silk on my skin and it contains ingredients  such as white tea to provide anti-oxidants. It's formulated to keep skin looking and feeling hydrated all while keeping your skin look it's very best. 

Tip: use as a base to hydrate skin and don't forget to apply on your neck too! Learn more here.

Even though it's the Fall season.. it's super important to keep wearing sunscreen to protect your skin from the sun. Luckily you can get the sun protection you need with this product AND it will help keep your skin looking younger. Even though I have oily skin, this moisturizer does not make it more shiny by mid-day.

Tip: Not a fan of foundation? Mix with mineral powder to make your own tinted moisturizer. 

Check out Dermalogica to get this today!

(Disclaimer: I received this product from iFabbo to test, try and share my thoughts with my readers.) Check out more blogs @ TotalBeauty.com

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

September PopSugar Must Have Box Review

September's PopSugar Must Have box came earlier than I expected!! It's a nice mix of Fall items that I'll be using this season so I am excited about these!

Here's what I got:
- Nicole Miller designer ear buds- I've already several pair of ear buds from previous subscription boxes so these weren't necessary. They are cute and include microphones so they will be nice to add to my collection. I haven't even used the one I got from Nina Garcia's quarterly box yet!

- Tilo scarf- This was the sneak peek that I got me excited for this month's box. A casual grey with red accents will be perfect to dress up a light sweat er.

The rest of the items seemed like filler items to me.. they're quite a lot and it's a mix so will come in handy.
- Oribe's Superfine Purse Size hair spray- A fan of Oribe, I can't wait to try this hair spray.
- Note cards from Rifle Paper Co. - packet of 8 is great to send a note to a friend!
- A set of pencils from Letter C Design (don't use pencils normally but looks quite fancy)
- Urban Remedy's Almond Brownie snack incl. $10

Per PopSugar's description card included in the box, there were 2 Special Extras:
- A $20 Nike gift card!- it also comes with a code to enjoy free shipping and a measuring tape to get your perfect size for their sports bras. The measuring tape will also be perfect for my sewing DIY crafts.
- Ghiradelli Milk Chocolate Sea Salt & Almond Minis- these bags are the perfect treat but it's so hot right now.. they're sitting in the fridge.

All in all, another great box!!! If you haven't signed up for PopSugar's Must Have box yet, be sure to sign up. It's $39/month and compared to others I have received and gotten, you definitely get a great variety of items to use, reuse and love for the rest of the month.. until your next box comes along!

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Ipsy #StreetStyle September bag

My September Ipsy bag is here!! I'm not crazy about the silver metallic bag but it is different from all the other bags that I have gotten. I am loving the contents INSIDE the bag though. They're all useful and practical and I'm seriously digging the variety!

Goodies in my Ipsy bag:
- Pacifica Eyeliner pencil- I've already got this in Gun Metal, so glad I got another color- Fringe (dark brown). Perfect to wear everyday.
- Crown Eyeshadow brush for creases and eyeshadows. This 2 in 1 brush is awesome! I can never have enough brushes so glad to add this to my collection.
- Nourish Organics- Face Cleanser in Cucumber & Watercress- this sample size cleanser is great for travel. I've already tried this before in my Teens Turning Green Conscious Collections box last year, so glad I got some extra! Cream cleansers are gentle and more moisturizing for the fall.
- Briogeo's Don't Despair, Repair! deep conditioning mask- this 1 oz. tub is super hydrating with avocado, almond and argan oils. Since my hair is already on the oilier side, this will be only for the ends! I've found my hair more conditioned when I use a conditioning mask every other week.
- Cailyn Art Touch Tinted lip gloss- this dark red color is more dark than what I would normally wear- which is why I love subscription boxes. I get to try new colors/products that I wouldn't usually go for. I'm saving this for late Fall though.. it still feels like summer to wear this dark of a red.

Join Ipsy today!!

As always look forward to October's Ipsy bag and seeing what kind of treats they'll be including. I feel like Ipsy has been spot on with my products! They're giving me the products that I would've wanted from all the choices they have for the month and they're also more natural products. :)

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

SOBO Skincare -time to take care of your skin!

Anti-aging. I recently had a friend ask if I used any anti-aging products and I had to really think about it. I know I use a lot of products but were they specifically targeted for anti-aging? My routine has been on a roller coaster ride- some weeks it gets very complex, then simple, then back to trying more products. I began to investigate more into anti-aging ingredients and immediately I found ones that used the ingredient Resvertrol- naturally found in plants and even foods such as red grapes (think wine!).

A skincare line that I've discovered, SOBO Skincare offers a line of anti-aging products and I got the opportunity to test a sample of their Ultra Age Repairing Cream with Resveratrol. What is great about their product is that they focus on using natural and organic ingredients. It contains jojoba and apricot kernel oil to help moisturize your skin and of course, resvertrol and hyaluronic acid to reduce the appearance of wrinkles.

My experience:
I have used this for a few nights already and I can tell you laugh lines around my mouth seem to be less noticeable now. The cream felt incredibly light  and smooth on my skin and left a nice finish afterwards. Overall, my face looks brighter and definitely more smooth. I'm always inclined to use products that contain natural oils on my face to keep it from drying out.

I'm excited to try the other products in their skincare line now!

SOBO Skincare line also includes:
- Age Smoothing Eye Serum- keep your peepers looking young!
- Ultra HGF Youth Serum- helps with dry skin and prevents sign of future aging
- Essential Moisturizing Cream - for daily use and if you don't need the "anti-aging" properties

For my readers, I have a special 25% off discount to use on SOBO Skincare! Use this code: TRYSOBO  at checkout (soboskincare.com) and you can save 25% Off!! (note: discount is applied to your first purchase only and cannot be combined with any other discounts.)

(Disclaimer: Backed by BrandBacker.)

Sunday, September 07, 2014

Ease into Fall with Sweet-ease wax strips

With summer almost coming to an end, it doesn't mean you still won't need to groom! I'll still be wearing shorts and dresses well into the September and October so shaving & waxing will still be on my to-do list.  Do you prefer a razor or a waxer? Shaving with razors always seemed easier to me until I discovered DIY Waxing kits at home with SweetEase! I mean after all, their tagline is: "Easy Peasy! Wax It Sweetie!" Plus- with waxing, you'll get to enjoy smooth-free skin longer than shaving!

I received the Bikini Waxing Kit, Leg Waxing Kit and Face Waxing Kit to try and also to compare the differences between the 3. (They're available at Ulta and only cost $4-5 per kit) 

Here's the Leg waxing kit and comes with 20 strips. (10 packets but each has a side of wax so counts has 2 strips) To "warm" up the wax, simply slide your hands over the wax strip as if you're warming up your hands. Once you feel the wax is warm, you can peel off and you'll get two strips with wax to start using! Note: the Leg waxing kit has the LARGEST wax strips, compared to the other two. 

Each kit comes with EASY instructions so you can follow along and two towelettes to remove any remaining residue wax afterward.  

The Bikini Waxing Kit is also very similar to the Leg waxing kit but there are only 16 strips (8 packettes) and a bit smaller. These were also easier to "warm" up as the wax strips are smaller. They're vanilla scented so definitely smelled nice. The after-use wipes were also useful as it can be a bit sticky, plus the wax hardens. If you're out of the wipes, I recommend using Argan Oil on a cotton ball/wipe.

The Face Waxing Kit are the smallest of the wax kits which makes sense since you do not want to wax your eyebrows off!  These can also be used for legs and bikini areas in case some spots.

(Disclaimer: I received this product from this company's PR agency to test, try and share my thoughts with my readers.)

Friday, September 05, 2014

Birchbox & CEW Limited Edition Best-in-beauty box

A new box had been revealed on Birchbox. Occasionally they launch special edition boxes with different themes, and this time, they teamed up with CEW (Cosmetic Executive Women Insiders’
Choice Beauty Awards) to choose items for this Best-in-Beauty bundle box.

Here's what's in the box: 
Mally Beauty’s High-Shine Liquid Lipstick Pen in Just Heaven 
Smashbox Cosmetics’ Always Sharp Waterproof Kohl Liner in Storm 
dr. brandt® pores no more® pore refiner primer 
Josie Maran Cosmetics 100% Pure Argan Oil Light 
Supergoop!® Antioxidant-Infused Sunscreen Mist with Vitamin C, SPF 50 – Travel Size 
100% Pure Whipped Body Butter in Honey Almond

Get your box today on Birchbox! Or sign up for their monthly box for just $10/month.

Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Jessica Smith's Barre Fitness DVD Review

This summer, I have been upping my fitness routines by attending outdoor fitness activities and also trying out new DVDs. (Pairing my workouts with the awesome Fabletics outfits.) Ever since I've been using my Barre Conditioning video last year, I've been hooked! I've discovered another DVD that has even more ballet-inspired workouts to help get a ballerina physique- Jessica Smith's Barre Fitness DVD.

Jessica Smith is a YouTube guru who has some amazing videos on different workout sessions. I haven't heard of her until I got the DVD so I was happy to add her to my YouTube subscription list. There are three 20-minute sessions that help focus on what you want to accomplish in your workout. (Also the shorter quick-hits makes it easier when you're on a time crunch!) There's Cardio Ballet, Barre Burn and a Floor Barre routine.

Here's a rundown for each of the routines:
The Cardio Ballet routine is an incredible routine of exercises to keep your heart rate up (w/o having to wear sneakers)! When you don't have a lot of room to exercise (think- you can even do this in your living room or hotel room) this is a great routine to do. It's low impact, moving your entire body while jogging lightly.

The Barre Burn routine uses a chair and hand weights (optional) to help simulate a classroom with actual ballet bars. Lots of great strength exercises here to workout the glutes and butt! (Note the chair used should have a back that is about the height of your waist). The strength exercises using the hand weights were actually my favorite part. Some exercises including a chair pose while extending arms in & out and holding the weights, and a tree pose with arms extended while holding weights.

The Floor Barre routine is probably my favorite since my preference are anything mat routines. It's best used with a small ball but since I don't have one, a yoga pillow worked to help support my back. There's tons of core work exercises so this was a great routine to help strengthen those muscles as well as my back.

Check out more Jessica Smith's routines on her YouTube channel or get the DVD on Amazon!

Monday, September 01, 2014

Fabletics Boutique- September picks

Happy September! It's the start of a new month and the end of the Labor Day long weekend! I've been enjoying my weekend so far, hanging out with family, running some errands and catching up on sleep!

I've been broadening my workouts and trying new DVDs- can't wait to share them with you soon! Throughout the summer, I have been wearing my favorite outfits from Fabletics- comfortable and chic active wear. Their coordinated outfits make it easy for you to choose - all you need to select are the size and colors (if there are color options.)

Also, first outfit is only $25! (Half off their cheapest option of $49.95) I've selected outfits that had 3 items in it- a top, bottom(shorts or capris) and a sports bra. Each month they unveil different designs and outfits and

Here are just a few of the Sepember outfits that were in "My Outfits" based on my profile:

As a VIP Member, you get to choose your monthly outfit from the 1st to the 5th of each month or you can "Skip" for the month. Join Fabletics today to get your first outfit for only $25 and to see what styles they'll select for you based on your preferences!

Haven't joined yet? Check out www.fabletics.com!

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