Celeb Fav Bio-Oil: Just Hype or Heavenly?

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Bio-Oil is coined as specialist skincare for scars, stretch marks, uneven skin tone, ageing, and dehydrated skin. And, more recently Kim Kardashian revealed it as her secret weapon that she’ll be using throughout her pregnancy to keep stretch marks (and wrinkles) at bay. It is also reported to be  favored by celebs such as Natalie Portman and Rochelle Humes. So, why all the hype about this “miracle” oil?

The key ingredient is PurCellin Oil. PurCellin is not a single ingredient, it is a delivery system which reduces the overall thickness of the substance and helps Bio-Oil absorb easily into the skin, which in my opinion, it does well. The product may be called an oil and look greasy but it does in fact absorb super well, leaving a light sheen but not a greasy, slimy feel (unless of course, you over apply), But, just to be clear, PurCellin Oil™ is a laboratory recreation (man made) of the preen gland oil of ducks, and acts as the delivery system for Bio Oils other ingredients.

It is also a non-acnegenic product, can be used on sensitive skin and is hypo allergenic. Made up of a mix of plant oil and vitamins, Bio-Oil helps moisturize and enhance the skin to its fullest. It relieves dry skin, helps soothe after sun exposure, and can be used in the bath. In fact, one of my favorite ways to use it is in the bath for general hydration. For healing it is recommended to be used twice daily for a min. of 3 months.

As I’m not pregnant, nor am I using it for stretch marks, I cannot speak directly to those claims. But, I can give my personal opinion to claims of hydration and skin tone. After using it only for a few days a dear friend touched my arm and immediately remarked how soft my skin felt, loved it!

I also noticed the skin on my legs was looking more even, not as red. I’ve started to dab a little bit around my eyes for moisture and fine lines and so far, no breakouts, and good results. I’m hesitant to apply it all over my face because of break outs but I’ll let you know if I dare go there. Until then, I have to say for my purposes, Bio-Oil is pretty heavenly!

My only warning for those who are super conscious about ingredients is that Bio-Oil does contain paraffin or mineral oil in it. Paraffin is a solid mixture of hydrocarbons obtained from petroleum which does raise a flag for some people however, it is considered a low overall hazard and permitted by the FDA for use as as an ophthalmic emollient. For more information please click here.

Available at: Ulta.com 4.2oz $19.99

Key Ingredients:

Botanicals
Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract (Calendula Oil)
Lavandula Angustifolia Oil (Lavender Oil)
Rosmarinus Officinalis Leaf Oil (Rosemary Oil)
Anthemis Nobilis Flower Oil (Chamomile Oil)
Vitamins
Retinyl Palmitate (Vitamin A)
Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E)

Oil base
Mineral Oil (Paraffinum Liquidum)
Triisononanoin
Cetearyl Ethylhexanoate
Isopropyl Myristate
Glycine Soja Oil
Helianthus Annuus Seed Oil
BHT
Bisabolol

For more information: http://bio-oilusa.com/en-us

Burning Desire: Candle Wish List

Screen shot 2012-12-13 at 10.10.36 AMAs a self acknowledged candle junkie I have tried and tried many a candle. And, many with great results. I’ve already written about my love for Diptyque’s Baies candles, a classic for year round, and now the Diptyque Holiday Collection $32.00 – $68.00  This limited edition Holiday collection is packaged in elegant lovely containers decorated with a replica of a hand-drawn design which gives off a beautiful colored light when burning.   The collection is a range of 3 candles Sapin Doré paying homage to the fir tree, Amber Oud  reminiscent of an Oriental journey filled with rare spices, and Oliban transporting you to an Arabian dream highlighting resin frankincense.

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For a better price point, still not bargain basement deals, I also love Voluspa’s Champagne Rose $24.00 or the Grande 3 wick versions for $60.00. The Grande version ha a 120 hour burn time and is beautiful on a table with a triple wick being burnt. It also smells divine with notes of rose champagne, cassis berries, and white rose petals. This scent really fills the room but is not too overwhelming. I like to light the Grande size when having guests over to create a nice warm ambiance.

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Every time I burn Restoration Hardware’s French Oak candle $39.00 – $49.00 EVERYONE asks what it is and remarks how much they love it, it is Herbes de Provence mingled with purple iris, white oak and a hint of smoky wood. Totally enveloping and the packaging is stunning for gifting! The candle comes is 3 sizes packaged in the wooden box which I now use on my desk filled with pens and colored pencils.

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And last but not least, Patch NYC OWL Candle $37.00 When I saw these candles I was drawn in by the vintage-inspired packaging and old world feel. Then for a double do good, the candles are 100 percent soy with a 72 hour burn time. The labels on the front of these candles are silhouettes of different animals and the owl scent is an earthy scent of sandalwood, tobacco and vetiver – perfect for a winter vibe. I also recommend the STAG candle with the scent of siberian fir that is fresh but not overpowering, thanks to light notes of citrus and raspberry.

Liquid Facelift: Rodial Dragon’s Blood Sculpting Gel

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Rodial Dragon’s Blood Sculpting Gel has been dubbed the ‘liquid facelift’ for many reasons and I have to say after using it for the past month, I’m a big fan. Last month as I wandered around Harvey Nichols I was simply looking to up my hydration. I’d traveled from Los Angeles to London and after a week in the cold weather my lips and face were extremely dry. So, what started as an attempt for a moisture kick, ended in an expensive impulse purchase. I got fully sold into trying Rodial Dragon’s Blood Sculpting Gel. That night, with great buyers remorse after the hefty price tag, I opened the box and only hoped I’d found something amazing. Turns out it was pretty amazing! And, little did I know at that time that beauty Angelina Jolie is thought to be a fan.
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I wouldn’t go so far as to compare it with an actual facelift although I haven’t had one. But, it’s certainly a worthwhile step before you get to that point in life. The sculpting gel forms a skin-like film, you can feel it but that’s a good thing in this case, which protects against environmental damage and aggressions. It also reduces redness, true, and inflammation, true.
The key active ingredient, Dragon’s Blood (and where from the product gets its edgy name) is the bright red resin or sap of the sangre de drago tree. It has been using for centuries by ancient cultures for dye, incense, and healing. The red latex of the Sangre de Grado tree, native to South America, reportedly has wound-healing and antioxidant properties. The sap promises to plump aging skin to regain fullness in the face, while also helping to define its natural contours. On top of the product feeling great and filling its promises, the scent is gorgeous. In fact, I would go so far as to say this is my favorite smelling product, with a gorgeously subtle, fruity scent.
So, before I went to bed that night in London I happily touched my face thinking that after only one use my skin already felt silky smooth, soft all over, and much less red. And now 1 month later I’m just as happy to reach for my Dragon’s Blood. If only it wasn’t such an expensive habit!

Key Ingredients & Benefits:

  • Dragon’s blood – contains phytotherapeutic actives that when applied creates a second skin-like film to protect against free radical damage and stimulates cell regeneration. Anti-inflammatory properties soothe and repair skin and reduce redness.
  • Collageneer – a patented active ingredient that effectively increases the synthesis of collagen, ensuring skin appears tighter, firmer and more wrinkle-free by promoting the production of high quality collagen.
  • Volufiline – increases fatty deposits within the skin to
    provide a fuller and plumper more line-free appearance.
  • Commipheroline – renowned for its anti-inflammatory and
    immune-stimulant properties, a more line-free appearance is created through a plumping action, by modulating two key mechanisms that activate lipogenesis.

Rodial Skincare Dragons Blood Sculpting Gel 1.7 oz (50 ml) $98.00 

Put Your Best Face Forward & Exfoliate!

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One of the steps we most commonly skip in our skin care routine is exfoliation. It is not a daily necessity but if you add this step into your weekly routine you will notice the difference almost immediately. So, in preparation for upcoming Holiday parties and winter weather, here is how and which gentle exfoliators we recommend use to put your best face forward! We’re suggesting gentle so as not to cause any irritation or skin melt-downs right before the Holidays!

The reason that exfoliation is important is that it is likely if you don’t ever exfoliate your skin is covered in dead skin cells. These dead cell can make your skin look dull, dry, and older. It will also have an effect on the way your makeup applies, specifically foundation, or how well your moisturizer absorbs. There are many different levels and types of ways to exfoliate such as microdermabrasion, chemical peels and retinoids. But for our purpose here are some tips and weekly (or bi-weekly) exfoliators that aren’t overly complicated.

TIPS:

1. Pick a scrub that is meant for the FACE. There are many body exfoliants in the market but they will be way too harsh for your face. Exfoliating body scrubs are usually thicker in consistency, sometimes contain oils, and are usually for exfoliation but not necessarily cleansing.

2.Always make sure to add luke warm, not hot, water while applying your exfoliator. Do not apply to dry skin as it can also make them too harsh. In fact most exfoliants are intended to be activated by using water.

3. Use gentle circular motion while massaging the skin. Do not damage your skin by thinking if you scrub harder it will make the product work better. Be kind to your beautiful face and take it easy.
4. Try our favorite exfoliating tool: Clarisonic They come in a range of options and colors and the new MIA is amazing as a gift available in tons of colors and you can personalize it! I did this for  my sister a couple of years ago and she loved it!
5. After exfoliation, don’t forget to apply your moisturizer! Always remember that a good moisturizer will not clog up your pores. It is a must for healthy nourished skin, especially when you are exfoliating.
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Cosmedicine Medi-Morphosis Self-Adjusting Exfoliator $18.97 One of the best safety features about this product is you can’t over-exfoliate with this scrub because the beads will start to dissolve before that even happen. It is great for sensitive skin and still highly effective without being harsh, it feels gentle.It is recommended for use twice weekly.

Noted by Cosmedicine: Inspired by the advanced exfoliation treatments performed in a physician’s office, this deep pore, resurfacing treatment with stop-action crystals: Accelerates the release of cellular debris, roughness, dullness and skin damage. Leaves skin smoother, brighter, more luminous and never over-exfoliated In clinical studies, it measured: 12% Reduction in pore size & Zero irritation or sensitivity among the 217 subjects tested.

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Olay Skin Smoothing Cream Scrub $4.79 at Drugstore.com. A conditioning beta-hydroxy formula with microbeads cleanses skin deeply while gently exfoliating to rejuvenate skin. It leaves a nice radiance and smooth feel. A good oil free option for every day use although you DO NOT need to exfoliate every day. This product may be slightly drying so remember to moisturize after use. This applies after use of any exfoliator.

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Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant $40.00 – 20% OFF at Drugstore.com Highly recommended but the priciest of our picks. This product starts out as a gentle, rice-based exfoliating powder which activates upon contact with water and turns into a lush foam. When activated it releases Papain, Salicylic Acid and Rice Enzymes that micro-exfoliate dead cells, instantly leaving skin smoother and brighter. Formulated without artificial fragrances and colors.

Luxe Holiday Beauty Gift Guide

We all have a family member or friend who simply has everything and every year with the Holidays upon it is a struggle to find that perfect gift.

Well, you need look no further as this Luxe Holiday Beauty Gift Guide has something for even the most discerning of us ladies.

Kilian In the City of Sin/1.7 oz. 1.7oz $245.00 For the truly LUXE lady a new fragrance by the renowned Kilian Hennessey. In the City of Sin is a place of extreme temptation where every street corner offers the possibility of impromptu encounters and seductions. The fragrance opens with an explosion of Bergamote from Calabria, pink Peppercorns and Cardamom from Guatamala. It then evolves into a heart of Apricots and caramelized Plums held in check by the Turkish Rose Absolute. A light haze of Indonesian Incense entrances and then lends a profound depth, further sustained by Atlas and Virginia Cedar woods and rich Indonesian Patchouli. Needless to say a beautifully complex fragrance that comes in a stunning white enamel clutch wrapped with a golden snake. Fully seductive and fully luxurious!

Rodin Face Oil $150 & Luxury Body Oil $110  Olio Lusso was created by Linda Rodin, stylist and former fashion editor for Harper’s Bazaar, to satisfy what she felt was missing in the anti-aging skin care market. Her line now has a cult-like following among fashion and beauty insiders and justifiably so! It is a miracle oil for women of all ages who seek beautiful, dewy skin that conveys an extraordinary sense of well-being. Made with an exclusive, aromatic blend of 11 essential oils to soothe and soften the skin. As an step up in gifting you can pair up the face and body oil for a complete package. Although, either of these items will light up the recipient on the insider and out! Oil is an essential part of a healthy beauty regime.


Another much anticipated gift for the BEAUTY & TRAVEL buff is the LIMITED EDITION Rodin Travel Kit $85.00

Frederic Malle Notre Dame Candle $95.00 OR Diptyque’s Set of 3 Mini Candles $84.00

Comme des Garcons 2 Incense Sticks $36.00

MAKE IT PERSONAL

Make it up and make it personal with a hand picked selection of products for your lucky recipient. Mix and match a great set of eyes, lips, cheeks, and nails to give a customized set that is is both personal and her favorite gift.

I may be, well must be, somewhat biased but tenoverten’s WORTH $18.00 is one of my favorite nail polish colors of the season from the famous NYC salons tenoverten. The polish is both 5 FREE + CRUELTY FREE and lasts by using the best raw ingredients all compliant with the leaping bunny effort to encourage suppliers to also provide cruelty free ingredients. Not just in the finished product. Worth is currently featured in this month’s Marie Claire and is a truly gorgeous gold. Not too yellow and not glittery, an on-trend must-have metallic. Come December  tenoverten is also offering a discounted polish set for the Holidays for the true nail buff in your life… or if you’re recipient is in NYC go the extra mile and pick up a gift certificate for a little pampering.

Too-Faced Perfect Eyes Waterproof & Tearproof Eyeliner in Perfect Moss $18.00 This new liner is easy to apply and a perfect daytime green-gray color. Dark enough to create effect and make your eyes pop but still light enough to get a natural look. It’s also a great gift as application is easy, it glides on smoothly to get a clean line. Another great ‘eye’ gift is always a classic black mascara like Lancome Definicils $26.00.

Jouer Cheek Tint in Peony $20.00 The perfect cream blush to add a soft flush of pink to any winter blues.

Obsessive Compulsive Lip Tar in Stalker $16.00 NY Based cult brand Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetic is not only 100% Vegan and Cruelty Free but this amazing product is a hybrid between a lip gloss and lipstick. Meaning it goes on like a gloss but then dries matte like a lipstick. A few other pros are that it lasts for hours (date night may be an exception), is highly pigmented, and comes in a range from subtle to super bright fun. Even colors like neon pink, blue, and orange. I’m not quite ready to be that experimental but a classic Hollywood red like Stalker or the new color Electric Grandma are safe bets to gift anytime of the year. And remember a little bit goes a long way so only use a tiny dab to start with.

Or for luscious lips try this UBER-LUXE lip set from iconic Gucci designer Tom Ford.  Hint: if anyone is looking for a gift idea for me then this is the one. Tom Ford Beauty 4 Piece Lip Color Boxed Gift Set $192.00 Colors include:Lip colors include Spanish Pink, Crimson Noir, Nude Vanille, & Wild Ginger giving a range from nude to show stopper.

Happy shopping and always remind yourself it’s the thought that counts not the dollar value. So, pick up a great gloss for a friend and she’ll smile right back at you while wearing it. xo

Thanksgiving Table Beauty

Let’s imagine you have cooked a masterful turkey, have a room filled with family, friends, and love, and are glowing with a warm pink shimmer blush and a great cream sweater. Everyone is enjoying the laughter and getting ready to sit and feast. Now, beyond the ultimate gratification of a great Thanksgiving meal with great company, is a great table! Here are is a great and versatile tip on how to make your Thanksgiving table shine along with your spirit!

Fast, Cheap, and Easy! Buy a roll of brown butcher paper and either cut it up for place mats, leave it as a long runner, or use it to label your food at your Thanksgiving buffet. Butcher paper can be found in most office supply stores such as Staples. Rip the ends, it doesn’t need to be cut nicely, a raw edge is interesting. Get a nice calligraphy pen in black, silver, white, or gold and above each plate write the guests name. If it’s on the runner you can write it on the bottom edge above the plate or if it’s on a mat, on the top of the mat so it peeks out above the plate. For mats you can also draw a scrolling border in various shapes around the plate. Again, either the same shape or different as the variety adds interest. Another great idea for the mats are underneath each plate you can write a message of gratitude to the person who is sat in that spot. For example, “I am grateful for your smile” or “In thanks for your love”. Then when the table is cleared for dessert, each guest will have a personalized message to make them smile and remind them how much they mean to you.

For kids, you can leave an assortment of washable markers or crayons in a couple of cups or a carved out pumpkin on the table so they can doodle on the mats for fun. This will keep them entertained and make a great crafting project. This can even be set up at a separate kids table where you can can add glue, scissors, colored paper, and more. Of course, you can always make the entire theme fun for adults and kids alike by leaving crayons out for everyone. Draw fun turkey shapes, leaves, scrolling vines, pumpkins, and any other ideas you can think of.

To top off the table add a few mini pumpkins spread out across the runner and a couple of small and simple low arrangements vs one large arrangement. If you’re entertaining adults and have an evening dinner I would always suggest tea lights down the runner as well. You can’t bet candles for ambiance above all else!

Have a very Happy Thanksgiving and to all our Glow + Tell readers we are truly thankful for you!

Love,

Jaclyn & Elena

Chapped Lip Care: Why & How To Heal

We experience chapped lips all year round due to cold and dry weather, insufficient or lack of nutrients (vitamin B), smoking, improper diet or even medications or thyroid hormone imbalance can cause chapped lips. But, with the cold upon us it becomes a much more common problem and we need a little extra cold weather care for our sensitive puckers. Lips are the most vulnerable to drying out as we lose up to 10 times the moisture through our lips than anywhere else on the face or body. Lips are mucous membranes so they have very thin surface layers of skin on them which isn’t good for winter lip lock.

Here are a few reasons WHY & HOW lips chap and how to best help the problem.

1. Do not exfoliate your lips! If you are it can break down the thin layers of skin you do have on them.

2. Pick perfect lip product! Some lip products actually have drying ingredients such as scented lip gloss or plumpers. Cinnamates, which create the scent can easily irritate the skin so try a fragrance-free gloss. Also keep an eye out for ieucalyptus, menthol, and camphor which can also cause irritation and dryness.

3. Not all lip balms are alike! Wax based balms have less protection so choose a petroleum based treatment like Aquaphor Healing Ointment $4.79 Petrolatum is one of the most common occlusive agents, but you can also look for castor seed oil, shea butter, sunflower seed oil, or squalane to nourish cracked lips. Plus look for an SPF lip balm such as Aveeno Lip Conditioner Essential Moisture SPF 15 $3.70 or Blistex Lip Infusion SPF 15 $2.75.

4. Avoid using products daily that come in little pots as dipping your finger in a jar isn’t as sanitary as using a tube applicator.

5. Do not lick or bite your lips! People tend to bite and lick their lips when they’re stressed, causing them to get even dryer. “As saliva evaporates, it dehydrates skin further,” Linder tells WebMD. “Saliva also contains acids that help break down food. Those acids only cause irritation when sitting on compromised lip skin, Linder says.

6. Sleep slathered!  One of the keys to avoiding cracked lips is to apply balm early and often so when we sleep we loose a window of opportunity. Try wearing a thick layer of ointment to bed. “Many of us sleep with our mouths open, causing our lips to dry out.” Applying a treatment at bedtime means you’ll be less likely to wake up with chapping.” Los Angeles dermatologist Jessica Wu, MD  Try Neosporin Lip Health Overnight Renewal Therapy. $4.99

7. Cold Weather blitz. Protect your lips like yourself with a scarf in cold weather. You can’t walk around with a face mask but you can create a barrier between the cold and your lips by always wearing a lip balm and trying to not let your lips go bare.