Shadow & Concelear Primer Confession

SO... I have tried them all! Primers that claim to keep eye-makeup in place... every makeup line has them, right? Well, I have finally found the perfect one and I am here to present it to you! Please welcome Stay Don't Stray by Benefit.

NOTE: I am not a huge Benefit user. In fact, I only use and love their lipsticks... untill now!

Last week I was in Sephora (my favorite store on earth!) and they were having an in-store event for the launch of Stay Don't Stray.  I decided to try it... why not right? I have done quite well (for the most part!) at resisting buying their products just cause they are in such cute wrappings. This time I was buying it for the sole purpose of getting a benefit!

For the past two days I have used this primer and have to say- this product works! It doesn't dry my skin out like other primers I have tried. Quite to opposite actually; It hydrates the skin with sodium hyaluronate and also fights signs of aging with Vitamins C & E.

My skin is far from perfect and on occasion I get a blemish... I actually had one this week so I decided to try using this primer on my blemish. It worked amazingly! No creases or funny looking circles around the blemish... it blends seamlessly in the skin. In the eye area I noticed an immediate brightened effect and my fine lines were minimized. After applying the primer, I layered three different shades of shadow and then set out to give the ultimate test to this little primer... 16 + hours of wear. I can honestly report that everything is in the same place I put it, and my eye-makeup still looks just as pretty and fresh as when I first applied it.
Watch this video to hear about the results other have gotten with Stay Don't Stray!

This product comes in only ONE universally flattering shade.

Buy it at Sephora or at Benefit.

Or buy it here! I only get credit for items purchased from these Amazon links that I place in my blog.

Botox Alternative Confession

Filling out paperwork post treatment

A girlfriend and I recently went in to see my go-to Plastic Surgeon for Injectables, Dr. Michael Pickart, to see what could be done about the line/wrinkle we both have between our brows. This furrow has bothered me for awhile now, and I notice it even when I'm relaxed, which is REALLY annoying. I don't want to look stressed or angry when I am not, but I have noticed that I do have that look because of this line.

 I have tried Botox before (when I was 23), but my line wasn't that bothersome back then so I didn't notice that big of a difference. At that time I only needed $50 worth of Botox which equaled about 5 units. Now that I am older and have more of an issue in this area, I knew I would need alot more than 5 units of anything to completely freeze my forehead. Unwilling to pay $10 a unit for Botox, I decided to research the new alternative, Dysport. I had already seen results first-hand from my sister who I took to see Dr. Pickart last Spring to address the line between her brows before her wedding. She was really happy with the results as well as the price... so Dysport was already forefront in my mind when it came to muscle freezing injectables. 

I was pleasantly surprised to learn that Dysport was offering a special through April and May of $75 cash rebate as well as $75 credit towards your next Dysport appointment, AND Dr. Pickart was also taking $50 off the treatment. With savings like that can a girl really say no? I think not!

Dr. Pickart was on vacation during the time that we wanted to have our visit, so we agreed to allow his RN who is trained and licenced to do injecables perform our treatments. She was very nice and informative and totally fine with our picture snapping for my blog... which was super nice of her!

First she started by assessing the severity of our wrinkles and then prepped the skin with alcohol to kill bacteria on the skin and remove makeup.
Then came the marking of the injection sites which was done with a lip-liner type of pencil. She did this marking while I furrowed my brows as hard as I could so that she could see the muscles that worked to push my brows together.
Next came the numbing post injection which was done with a frozen encased cube of ice. It actually felt good, and took only about 30 seconds to numb the area.
Then came the anticipated needle, which I must note is extremely small. The point is actually so fine that it is dulled rather quickly just from puncturing the skin several times, so the nurse changed needles twice during my treatment to insure that there was no discomfort as a result of a dull-tipped needle.
The pain really was minor and the whole treatment was over so quickly that I wondered if there was even enough injected to do the trick! I was assured by the RN that 50 units were injected into 6 different points above and between my brows and that in about 12 days I would see the full results.
After the injections were finished there was a momentary "bubble" at the injection site between my brows. This disappeared within about 2 minutes as did the slight redness. The total cost after the discount and rebate was $100.00.

The next morning I woke up with a huge headache, but I don't know if the Dysport is to blame for that or the martinis that I consumed following my appointment! My girlfriend that also had the treatment with me said that she had read that headaches can be a side affect immediately following the treatment, so who knows, maybe it was the Dysport, maybe it was the martinis!

Over the next few days following the treatment I noticed that I was still able to push my brows together forming that dreaded line/wrinkle... but there was a little "heavy" feeling in that area when I tried do do it, as though I was pushing against something.

Now, 13 days later I am happy to report that any "pushing" of the brows together is completely impossible! There is NO wrinkle or line there whatsoever and my brows look as though I have had a slight brow-lift. They are higher and seem more arched and my forehead is incredibly smooth. I love it and am totally hooked!

My girlfriend on the other hand is slightly less thrilled. She likes that her line is less noticeable and that she can't make it deeper by furrowing her brows together, but she seems to think that more than 50 units of Dysport are needed and will probably get more on her next visit as to completely keep the muscles unmovable. She also isn't too keen on the slightly more arched brows and says that next time she will ask for that portion of the treatment to be skipped.

Another thing that she notes is that while moving her brows together is not easy, she is noticing that the effort to do that creates wrinkles in other areas that she never noticed before. This does make sense to me in a strange way, because the "frozen muscles" now cause other muscles to come into action which makes little lines in places that weren't affected before. I don't have this problem, but then again, I don't use my forehead in expression when talking nearly as much as my girlfriend does. She thinks that the solution to this would be to have more of the muscles injected with Dysport as to not have any functioning muscles in the forehead (now this is a VERY anti-injection friend that I have, so doing the whole forehead numbing thing probably isn't something she will ever do, and she states that she will only do Dysport "one more time").

Overall, my experience with Dysport was fantastic and I highly recommend it for anyone wanting to rid their forehead of lines or created a bit of a lift effect to their brows.

If you are considering getting Dysport, do it this month so that you can get the fabulous savings they are offering through the end of May.

Mary Kay Creme Lipstick Confession

Me wearing "Pink Melon"
I have a good friend Danielle, who is a rep for Mary Kay and who has insisted I try one of the new creme lipsticks. She told me they were long wearing lipsticks (which is major important!) and that they are stay true colors (meaning they wont look different shade-wise on you than they do on the stick). I thought - that's good, but what else? She went on to inform me that they are enhanced with vitamin c derivatives to help ward off wrinkle-causing free radicals, which ofcourse sold me!

The assortment of colors to choose form makes it nearly impossible to pick just one, so I had to go with three: "Pink Melon" and two others from the limited edition Beauty That Counts collection: "Inspiration" and "Compassion". Not only are these last two colors I chose beautiful, but they also are part of an effort in the United States by Mary Kay Inc. to end domestic violence. $1.00 will be donated from the each sale of limited-edition Beauty That Counts Mary Kay Creme Lipstick. Each lipstick is $13.00 and is worth every penny because they are rich, creamy, long-wearing, non-drying, great tasting and have so many gorgeous shades to choose from in 6 color palettes: Pinks, Metals, Neutrals, Chocolates, Berries and Tawnies. Sounds like a fruit salad to me!!! Yummy and oh so pretty!

Check out all of the beautiful shades at Mary Kay. There are LOTS of other fun lip products at Mary Kay, so take a look-see at the whole line of lip treatments, colors and glosses. Once you see a shade you like, jot down the name of it and call Danielle at: 805-665-8451 or e-mail her at:
She will hook you up with the colors of your choice as well as lots of other goodies for FREE just for placing your order with her! She sent me home with tons of deluxe samples of shadows and lipsticks as well as blushes, eyecreams and facial cleansing and moisturizer samples.
Me wearing "Pink Melon"

May's Muse Confession

Have you ever seen a beauty so unconventional that you wonder if you even dare call it beautiful? Have you ever been shocked by a fashion statement, obviously made with blatant disregard or concern for what others may think? Have you ever heard of Isabella Blow?

I sat down some time ago to write a blog about the late Isabella blow, who took her own life three years ago today... but I was overwhelmed with the amount of material I found to draw from. Her life seemed so full (too full to condense) and so I have to just give you a link... lame I know, but its a good read, worthy of any beauty addict or fashion slave's time. Please read about this unforgettable icon, Isabella Blow.

Isabella Blow may not be a household name, but in the world of fashion, she was and is a name that brings to mind a free spirit with gall, passion and an eccentric eye to boot. Her closest friends were famous designers, many of which were discovered by Isabella herself.
Blow was not, by any conventional measure, a beautiful woman. She was jolie laide, maybe, but not pretty. “It pains me to say so,” she once said, “but I’m ugly. I know that’s subjective, so perhaps I should say instead that I’m striking. My face is like a Plantagenet portrait.” But Isabella dressed her way around her less than attractive features, in cinched waists and heels, cleavage, lipstick and hats that were more like sculptural art pieces. She once stated “Tracksuit bottoms for lunch, dinner, or in fact any time except for sport are completely unacceptable," and “There’s no point clomping around like a duck in flat shoes,” or “I simply can’t look at you without lipstick,” or “I do just love breasts. They’re so old-fashioned.”
It is said that her feet were always in Manolos, sometimes matching, sometimes not. I find that to be so deliciously odd and completely fantastic that it makes me wanna do it! Just think of the last time you pondered two pair's of simply fabulous shoes and found it nearly impossible to make a decision on which to wear. Well Isabella had the perfect solution: wear them both. And in doing so she made a fashion statement worthy of branding in my opinion!
Isabella is credited for the beginning of Philip Treacy, a famous hat designer who she discovered and hired to create a hat for her wedding in 1989. Seeing Treacy's talent, Blow situatedTreacy in her London flat, where he worked on his collections. She religiously wore Treacy's hats, making them a signature part of her outlandish style. In a 2002 interview with Tamsin Blanchard, Blow declared that she wore extravagant hats for a practical reason:
" keep everyone away from me. They say, Oh, can I kiss you? I say, No, thank you very much. That's why I've worn the hat. Goodbye. I don't want to be kissed by all and sundry. I want to be kissed by the people I love."
Isabella Blow with Philip Treacy
In 1992, Isabella Blow went to St. Martin's fashion college to watch the graduating seniors' projects, and fell head-over-Manolos for the work of the now past Alexander McQueen. It is a know fact that after the show, she called him up and said, "I know this sounds weird, but I'd like to buy the whole thing." Which she did. Alexander McQueen took his own life on Feb 11, 2010. So sad, it pains me just to type it. Such talent and such a mind... creative genius can be crushing I suppose, and such immense burden it must be to portray in real form when the imagination is in such a spin... I cant even fathom what frustrations and depressions must result from such  a brilliant and creative mind...
Blow and McQueen
There is something so fascinating about these sort of rare breeds... It just makes me want to delve into a rich memoir or biography about one of them, so as to try to find reason for their madness... but how can it be possible to understand though unless you share the madness, right?
I hope you enjoyed reading about Isabella Blow as much as I did! Please post your thoughts on her life and death... would love to hear what you think and what you loved most about her.