beauty · luxury

Review: Givenchy Teint Couture Everwear Foundation

Here’s a sample that I have had for a while, and I’ve been looking forward to reviewing it. I enjoy luxurious cosmetics and I was excited to try a foundation that I’ve never used before.

I got this sample of Givenchy Teint Couture Everwear Foundation in one of my Sephora orders last year (I will share my current opinions on Sephora in a future post). The shade closest to my complexion is Y400 (a medium-to-deep shade with warm undertones). The sample had enough product for two applications, so I tried two different application techniques. The first time I used it, I used a foundation brush, while the second application was done with my fingers.

Both times, the product applied smoothly and had a beautiful color. Unfortunately, it oxidized a bit more than I liked, and the best way to keep it from being too dark on my skin was to make sure that I highlighted my face heavily (more than I normally do). Also, I tend to do better with neutral undertones, so while it’s a beautiful product, I would need to try a different shade.

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A swatch of Givenchy’s Teint Couture Everwear in Y400

I was excited to try it, and honestly, I wasn’t completely disappointed. The color wasn’t a perfect match (once it oxidized), but the coverage was good and the product felt lovely on my skin. This product is a little pricier than my normal foundation (it’s $52 per bottle) but if I found a perfect shade match, I’d be willing to invest in a bottle.

My skin with the product applied, two different light settings used

Have you tried this product before? How did you like it? Let me know in the comments below!

beauty · life curation · luxury

Embracing Natural Beauty When You Can’t Leave Your Home

Last week, I shared a post about how I’m enjoying the natural beauty around my home. I’m fortunate to live in a suburb where I have a yard, beautiful plants, and a climate that is conducive to growing the kind of plants I enjoy.

For those that aren’t able to walk outdoors and take in natural beauty (either because of strict quarantine measures or due to living in a “concrete jungle”), I wanted to share some links to websites and YouTube channels that highlight natural beauty around the world.

My current favorite is the Keukenhof Garden in Holland. With millions of stunning tulips bulbs planted, the garden is a feast for the eyes. I’m thrilled that I can take in all of this natural beauty from the comfort of my home.

 

There is also the US Botanic Garden (located in Washington, DC). This incredible garden used to have many fascinating public events and was a wonderful resource for anyone interested in learning more about botany. At this time, however, you can do a virtual tour as well as many online programs. You can even do “yoga in the garden” online every Saturday during the pandemic.

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(A double flowering lenten rose, from the US Botanic Garden website)

Another lovely garden that I used to visit regularly during my workday was the Enid A. Haupt Garden. This stunning pocket of serenity was my perfect place to “get away” when I needed some time to relax away from the office. I always walked around the “parterre”, though this was only a small portion of the garden.

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(A photo of one of the urns in the Haupt Garden Parterre)

In my hometown, there is an incredible botanical garden. At Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens, it is also possible to do a virtual tour. These gardens are particularly special, because of their stunning annual butterfly exhibit.

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(Elegant butterfly featured on the Lewis Ginter Botanic Garden website)

If your city has a public garden or other outdoor space, you can probably do a virtual tour (a quick Google search should let you know if virtual tours are available). Do you have a favorite garden to tour? Let me know all about it in the comments below!

 

beauty

April Empties: A Quick Review

 Happy Monday, friends! I have never reviewed my product “empties” (products that I’ve used up completely) but since I’ve been trying to be mindful about my consumption, I have far more “empties” than normal! Instead of buying products out of boredom or curiosity, I’m far more focused on buying products as I actually need them.

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Most of the products I’ll discuss are very inexpensive, while one product (in particular) is mid-range price. I love that I’m able to share some inexpensive empties that I can highly recommend!

Without further ado, here are my April empties.

I love the Dermasil Oil-Free Daily Retinol Cream. I used this moisturizer on my face at night, and I love how it doesn’t make my skin feel oily. It also didn’t clog my pores or cause breakouts. The best part? This cream is only $1 at your local Dollar Tree! If you are unable to get to a Dollar Tree, or if you are unable to locate this product at your local Dollar Tree, then it can be ordered in packs of 3 on Amazon for a reasonable price.

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I regularly cleanse my face with Mary Kay products, though I occasionally use African black soap to switch things up. I recently finished off my last bottle of Mary Kay Timewise 3-in-1 Cleanser. MK has recently updated the cleanser formulation, so I’ll be trying the new formula to see if I like the changes that have been made.

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My consummate favorite, The Ordinary’s Niacinamide 10% +Zinc 1% serum, is an inexpensive skincare option to treat skin blemishes. I use this daily so I go through the bottles quickly. I’m thrilled that The Ordinary is now selling this product in a larger bottle (60 ml), so I can purchase the bigger size and create less waste.

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For my hair, I actually enjoy very inexpensive products, so long as they are effective. There’s no greater thrill for me as a wise shopper than to buy a product for a pittance and then that product over-delivers on its promises! This Softee Coconut Oil Hair & Scalp Conditioner is a hair grease that I massage into my hair to protect the ends and seal in moisture. This product can usually be purchased for less than $5 a jar, and it lasts a long time. I’ve had this jar for a few years, but I used it sporadically. With weekly application, a 12-ounce jar could last me at least 6 months.

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Finally, I’m featuring another Dollar Tree product. Lustee’s Olive Oil Hair Sheen is actually not an oil-based product but, rather, a water-based moisturizing spray. It is great for the “L” step of the LOC method (there are many hair gurus that can explain the LOC method far better than I can). It was also just $1, so it was a great buy. I was unable to find this product online, but I’ve seen it at every Dollar Tree that I’ve visited, so you should be able to find it with ease.

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That’s it for my April empties. I’m excited about sharing some new empties with you next month, as I continue to focus on using what I have and only replacing items when I need to. Have a great day, and I’ll talk to you all soon!

 

 

 

(This post contains affiliate links)

beauty · life curation

Getting Gorgeous, Inside and Out

One of my not-so-guilty pleasures has been looking at YouTube videos for beauty, style and life advice. As you all recall, I love watching mature YouTubers give their tips and tricks for living well. Along with the mature ladies, I also check out the younger women that are making great content on YouTube.

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A few of my recent favorite videos have been around the topic of “glowing up” during the quarantine. This concept – improving our looks while we stay home – is very popular because many of us FINALLY have time to do all of the beauty treatments, fitness routines, and dietary changes that we’ve always wanted to try. So, since we have the time, why not?

Here are a couple of my favorite videos featuring how to “glow up”, both on the inside and the outside (because having a beautiful exterior and broken interior is not the goal: wholistic/holistic health and beauty is what we’re creating!)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

beauty · life curation

Embracing Natural Beauty

With all of this “free” time at home, I have been concentrating on slowing down and enjoying the simple pleasures around me. The main pleasure I’ve indulged in regularly is taking in the stunning beauty of the flowers and trees surrounding my home. Here are a few of my favorite photos. Enjoy!

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My hot pink azaleas

A yellow rose bush that is beginning to bloom

Baby pink rhododendrons

My Japanese maple (the leaves are stunning!)

I find that spending a little time walking the perimeter of my home does wonders for my mood and my energy. Embracing natural beauty has such a calming effect on me. I also planted some irises, tigridias, and gladiolus bulbs that I’m patiently waiting to bloom. When those flowers bloom, I’ll take more pictures and share them with you all.

beauty · life curation · luxury

Getting Crafty: Planning to Make Bath Bombs

Since we’re all stuck in the house for the indefinite future, I figured this would be a great time to explore some of the curiosities I’ve had for a while. One of those curiosities involves those neat little fizzy bath bombs. I knew that these were frighteningly simple to make, but I’ve never had the ingredients to make my own. Until now.

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First, I looked up some basic recipes to see which ingredients and tools I need. I’m using this recipe from Our Oily House as a guide, because it has great reviews and looked simple enough. I went ahead and invested in a few supplies so that I can start making my own bath bombs at home. I went to Amazon and picked up a mold:

I also got some citric acid:

I ordered some epsom salt as well, but then I found a more affordable salt at a local store, so I’ll be returning that to Amazon this week. I already had baking soda, essential oils, cornstarch, and coconut oil, so once the rest of my order is received, I’ll be ready to experiment.

I can’t wait to share my fizzy goodies with you all! I’m so excited to try this!

 

 

(post features affiliate links)

beauty

Shelter-In-Place Skin Care

While sheltering-in-place, it can be tempting to “let ourselves go”. After all, the only people that are seeing us regularly are our families and friends that we choose to either 1) quarantine with or 2) video chat with regularly.

But while I’m inside, I’m amping up my skincare. Why? Well, *one day* in the not-so-distant future, I’ll be going outside again. And when I do, I want to look great! I want to look good and feel good when life returns to “normal”. So my skincare isn’t taking a break while I’m at home: in fact, I’m learning new ways to improve my skin.

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I’m still doing a version of the Korean 10-step skin care regimen, but I felt like my skin could use a little more care than normal. So I looked up different beauty treatments for the face and body. I created a fabulous coffee & brown sugar scrub using this recipe from Living Chic on the Cheap. I love using this on my body to soften my skin. I prefer to use this after I apply and rinse my soap off while showering. That way, a light layer of coconut oil (one of the scrub’s ingredients) will remain once I leave the shower. However, I have noticed that it helps to use a dark towel after using the scrub: some of the coffee color can remain on your skin if you use the scrub as the last step.

Next, I found this great video showing how to give yourself an at-home facial. I am a HUGE fan of gentle skin care, but there are times where a little more “elbow grease” is required to get the results that you want. This video shows you ways to gently extract impurities from the skin, and how to effectively steam your face. I’ll likely add a relaxing, inexpensive herbal tea to my steaming water, just for the aromatherapy benefits. Also, instead of using a mechanical scrub, I’ll employ a chemical one (I bought one from The Ordinary that I’ll review once I’ve used it a few times).

 

This week, I’ll be using my coffee scrub as well as doing my at-home facial. I’m going to give my skin the extra TLC it needs and deserves!

That’s all for today. I hope you all are doing well! Take care.

beauty · fitness · life curation

My Latest Obsession: Mature YouTubers

There’s something truly magical about learning to love the skin you’re in and embracing the aging process. I’ve spent a lot of time combing through YouTube to find content creators that can offer their life insights along with beauty information that’s applicable to the 40/50+ crowd. I’m inspired by these lovely women that define “aging gracefully”.

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The Free Range Diva: One of my all-time favorites. She is one of the rare mature women of color in the green beauty realm. She’s taught me about many green/clean beauty and health brands that I’d never heard of before. Here’s a video where she shares some things we can do while quarantined.

MzBrazell: She cooks, she dons different hair looks, and she’s charming. MzBrazell’s channel has been one of my favorites for quite some time. Here’s a video where she shows her most recent Amazon haul:

 

Life Over Sixty with Sandra: She has a background in media so she is amazing on YT. I love to hear her musings and refletions on her career. This video about listening to your intuition is a treasure.

 

 

NeeCJae: She has beautiful makeup looks and reviews, and I love her energy! This is a video with ideas of what you can do while quarantined.

 

Sussex Sandra: One of our sisters across the pond has a YT channel that discusses makeup and beauty. She does a lot of unboxing videos, so if that’s your thing, her channel is worth checking out. Here, she does a Treasure Tress Hair Subscription unboxing:

 

These are a few of the ladies that I’m watching right now. Do you have any favorite mature YTers? Please let me know in the comments below!

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Rest in Peace, Brandon Truaxe

A few days ago, the founder of The Ordinary, Brandon Truaxe, passed away. Truaxe’s brand is brilliant: it finally brought professional grade skin care to the masses at affordable prices. The Ordinary’s powerful, effective serums and solutions have been a staple in my routine for quite some time.

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Truaxe experienced a tumultuous year, and was eventually ousted from the company that he started. Aside from the controversy surrounding his company, I suspect that he was deeply troubled and experiencing many personal struggles as well. I hope that he is able to finally rest in peace.

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(Photo courtesy of DetailOrientedBeauty.com)

beauty · luxury

Review: Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Wear Foundation

Happy Friday, friends! We’ve made it through the week and now we have a reward of Saturday and Sunday ahead. It’s been a while since I’ve done a beauty review, so I was excited to prepare this one for you. I think it’s about time, don’t you?

Though I love luxury beauty products, I can’t believe that I’ve never tried Lancome. I’ve had a few perfume samples before, but never have I tried the company’s cosmetics.  I was excited to finally try the Teint Idole Ultra Wear foundation when I got a sample over the summer in a Sephora order.

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Initially, I was concerned about the shade. I received shade 500, which I suspect it would be a little too light for me. Based on the beauty vloggers I’ve seen on YouTube, I suspected that I probably wore a 510 or 520. But 500 was the closest shade to my complexion, so I decided to try it. I got it when I still had a bit of my summer tan, so I figured it might be a little too light. To my surprise, it was a perfect match then, and still a pretty great match now.

Both sides of my face with the foundation applied

You can see for yourself how flattering the finish is. I love this foundation. It felt light on the face and, while I use a primer underneath it, I didn’t use powder over it, so I got to see just how the foundation performed without any products topping it. I got a little oily throughout the day, but that’s fairly standard for me with any foundation. I didn’t feel that this formulation made my skin any  oilier than normal. just a dad was enough to give me a good medium coverage. I experimented with it on a different day and I found that it’s very buildable: this coverage could easily go from medium to full without weighing the face down. I don’t have many facial lines, but I also found that this foundation doesn’t exaggerate the lines that I have. Win!

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My adorable foundation sample

I’m so excited to have another  foundation in my arsenal! This foundaton performs just as well as I would expect it to, since it retails for $47. I’m going to experiment with a few other shades in the Teint Idole Ultra Wear line just to see if there’s a better match than this one, but if I can’t find anything that matches more perfectly, this will be just fine. I love it and can’t wait to try more!

That’s it for this week.  I’ll be back Monday with more posts for you. Take care, and enjoy your weekend!