The Best Dry Shampoos/Texture Sprays

best-texturizers-dry-shampoosDry shampoo is one of my deserted island products; I truly cannot live without it. I use it to freshen up my roots in between washes, extend the life of my blowout, and give texture and movement to beach waves. Since dry shampoos and texturing sprays are basically interchangeable, I’ve compiled my favorites here. I would love to know what your favorites are in the comments!

1. Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray ($46): No surprise here; this really is the best for getting lived-in beachy waves with volume and body. I know the price is astronomically high, but it really does give me the texture texture and finish I’m looking for, and it really holds the volume when I spray it under my roots. Nothing else comes close, except…

2. Oribe Apres Beach Spray ($42): To me, there is little difference between this and the Dry Texturizing Spray, except that this does create a bit more of a wave in hair. I spray and scrunch it over slept-in hair that hasn’t been curled to create movement and body. But these products are so similar, you do not need both!

3. Not Your Mother’s Clean Freak Unscented Dry Shampoo ($5): If you’re looking for an unscented version, this is the only alternative I’ve found. On days when I just don’t want the smell of a product to linger for hours, or if I’ll be in the car with my husband (who is sensitive to smells), I’ll use this. It texturizes nicely and is great for freshening roots and giving hair an overall volume boost.

4. IGK Beach Club Texture Spray ($29): This smells like the beach, so right off the bat, it’s awesome. It creates more of a piecey/twisty look…like true just-from-the-beach, windblown-from-salt-air hair — not beach waves created with a curling iron. It works to enhance your hair’s natural texture.

5. Drybar Triple Sec 3-in-1 Texturizer ($26): This texturizer refreshes day-old (or days-old) blowouts, tousles hair, injects volume, and creates matte texture. It’s really lovely on waves and curls, but can be used to pump up and bodify straight hair, too.

6. Kristin Ess Dry Finish Working Texture Spray ($14): From a celebrity stylist who boasts a roster of clients whose hair I absolutely adore (like Lauren Conrad) comes the Kristin Ess haircare line, available exclusively at Target. Beachy, piecey waves are effortless with a few sprays of this (especially on ends). If you’re sensitive to fragrance, use sparingly.

7. R + Co Death Valley Dry Shampoo ($29): Bear with me: this is a very dry dry shampoo. It feels like a powdery spray. The spritz really mattifies strands, and if you use it liberally, it ends up being too much (at least on my hair, which leans toward the dry side). A few sprays is all you need for hair that looks purposely slept-in.

8. Ouai Texturizing Hair Spray ($26): From the line of another celebrity stylist (Jen Atkin, most famous for styling the Kardashian manes) comes another great texturizer. Like the other celeb-created product on here, the fragrance of this is strong (to me it’s rose-y), but the end result is gorgeous hair. If scents don’t bother you, you will love this.

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The Beauty Product I’ve Remained Loyal to the Longest

fekkai-brilliant-glossing-cremeI realized that in eight years of blogging, I have never written about my all-time, tried-and-true, ride-or-die beauty product. I go through phases with products and switch things up pretty frequently, but there is one thing that has remained on my vanity for well over a decade. I use this product every. Single. Day. Fekkai Brilliant Glossing Creme is the one product I absolutely cannot live without.

There is something about it that just transforms hair effortlessly. It requires zero skill; I squeeze out a tiny amount, run it through my ends, and then gently skim the surface of my hair from midshaft down. And it’s a workhorse; it does practically everything! It smooths flyaways, makes my whole mane look instantly polished, and is an excellent split end sealer. It’s AMAZING for creating piecey texture on the ends of beachy waves. Since you only need a tiny drop (I use less than the size of a pea), the bottle lasts forever.

I use this every day, and always have a back-up bottle on hand for when my current supply runs low. It is, hands down, my all-time favorite beauty product.

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Smile Brilliant: The At-Home Alternative to Professional Teeth Whitening + GIVEAWAY!

smile-brilliant-teeth-whiteningStaring at my reflection in the mirror recently, I noticed that my teeth were not as white as they could be. Despite regular trips to the dentist, the effects of coffee and other enamel-staining foods had started to take their toll. Thankfully, it’s never been easier to get a bright white smile. Smile Brilliant is a professional-strength at-home teeth whitening product, and they kindly offered to send me their full system. I’m so happy to share my results with you today.

This post has been in the works for four months! I wanted to make sure to fully use the system before forming an opinion on it.

So, how did it work? Find out after the jump. There are also details on a giveaway and a coupon code! Continue reading

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Essential Nightstand Products

nightstandessentialsI’ve never been the type of person who can just fall asleep. It takes awhile, and a small army of products. I have a nightly routine that helps me get ready for sleep and fall asleep easier. I’ve learned that keeping these essential items on my nightstand can help me wind down and drift off faster. Here are the things I keep at my bedside for restful sleep.

1. Lavender Essential Oil: A few drops of this under my pillow and on my wrists helps calm my mind and prepare me for sleep. A great alternative is an essential oil diffuser; fill it with lavender oil for all-night aromatherapy.

2. Sunday Riley Tidal Brightening Enzyme Water Cream ($65): This super-hydrating water cream is like a big glass of water for my skin. I like that it’s really hydrating yet doesn’t feel heavy or greasy on my skin. It contains two forms of hyaluronic acid and tamarind extract to plump up the appearance of your complexion. I apply this every night before going to sleep.

3. RoC Retinol Correxion Sensitive Night Cream ($20): A retinol has become essential to my eye skincare routine. I love this RoC cream, which is affordable and works so well at warding off fine lines in the eye area while I sleep.

4. If you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or can’t tolerate retinol, try Kiehl’s Super Multi-Corrective Cream ($62) instead.

5. Kate Spade New York Spiral Notebook ($16): Sometimes when I get in bed, my mind races. I keep a pretty notebook beside my bed so I can jot down any thoughts that come to me. Getting them out of my head and onto paper helps me relax for the night.

6. Calming music: Since it takes me awhile to fall asleep, I recently started settling into bed earlier with soothing music. I like the Calm Meditation station on Pandora.

7. Glossier Coconut Balm Dot Com ($12): I keep this on my nightstand tray so I can slather on a healthy coat at bedtime. My lips are so dry at night, and this seals in moisture while I sleep.

8. Luxury Padded Sleep Mask ($5.69): I sleep so much better when I wear an eye mask because it forces me to close my eyes and totally blocks out light.

9. Clinique Pep-Start Eye Cream ($26): I keep this on my nightstand because I apply it first thing in the morning to revive and depuff sleepy eyes.

What are your go-to products before winding down at night?

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The Foreo ISSA Electric Toothbrush is Changing the Game

foreo-issa-toothbrushI’ve raved before about FOREO’s LUNA Mini facial cleanser and IRIS eye massager, so you know I was super psyched when they asked me to review their ISSA sonic electric toothbrush.

Here’s a quick rundown of why this toothbrush is so awesome:

  • Like my other FOREO devices, this toothbrush holds onto a charge and doesn’t let go! Seriously, a full charge lasts for such a ridiculously long time. FOREO says you can get 365 brushes (6 months!) out of a single charge! I don’t know how they do it.
  • It makes my teeth feel really clean after brushing, and can help whiten them with continued use.
  • It has an integrated timer that pulses every 30 seconds so I know when to move onto the next portion of my mouth. Foreo recommends dividing the mouth up into quadrants for a full 2-minute brush session with each use.
  • In addition to cleaning teeth, it also massages gums.
  • The back of the brush head is a tongue cleaner.
  • The brush head tilts back and forth to reach all areas of my mouth.
  • The bottom of the brush handle features a light that slowly blinks as it’s charging, and stays solid to signal when the device is fully charged.
  • It comes with a tidy faux leather sleeve to store the toothbrush in while traveling. That’s just a nice added touch.

foreo-issa-1The standard model comes with an all-silicone brush head, which I’ve been using. I love it. The silicone is more resistant to bacteria than traditional bristle brushes, which means it only needs to be changed once a year. They also sent me a hybrid silicone/PBT polymer brush head, which is tougher on plaque, but still gentle on gums. This should be replaced every 6 months. I have not yet used this.

The toothbrush is super simple to use. Just press the center button on the handle to turn it on, and then press the + or – buttons to adjust the intensity of the sonic pulses. Then you just brush your teeth like you normally do.foreo-issa-2

Also included in the package are an instruction manual, USB charging cable, and warranty card. Foreo encourages customers to register their products so they’re eligible for the 2-year warranty if anything goes wrong.

They also offer mini and mikro ISSAs for kids and babies.

In short, I love this toothbrush! I’m so happy it’s part of my daily routine, and it encourages me to take the best possible care of my smile.

The products in this post were provided courtesy of FOREO. All opinions are my own.foreo-issa-pouchforeo-issa-hybrid

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Tarte Summer ’17: Make Believe in Yourself

tarte-make-believe-in-yourselfTarte’s summer collection, Make Believe in Yourself, is all sparkles and unicorns, and I’m into it. It’s packed with products that will make you glimmer, shimmer, and shine in the best way possible. Seriously, there are THREE highlighters in this collection! Not to mention metallic shadows, glitter liner, and matte liquid lipstick in a blue hue. Check out the full lineup below. All the products are limited edition and they’re sure to sell out fast, so grab them while you can!

tarte-pro-glow-highlighterTarteist Pro Glow Liquid Highlighter ($29, LE): You obviously can’t have a magical collection without a serious highlighter, and this liquid version brings the glow. The creamy liquid dries down quickly and leaves behind a serious gleam that lights up skin. This comes in Stunner, an opalescent cream shade.

tarte-rainbow-highlighterSpellbound Glow Rainbow Highlighter ($30, LE): For good measure, there’s also a powder rainbow highlighter compact in the mix. (And there’s still one more further down in the post!)

tarte-make-believe-in-yourself-paletteMake Believe in Yourself Eye & Cheek Palette ($40, LE): Nine metallic and one matte shadow in a mosaic of shades to create everything from ethereal to full-on glam looks. The circular center pan contains an eye and cheek highlighter made for strobing. Includes the following shades: myth (matte nude), magic (bronze), wings (copper), marvel (metallic sage), trance (taupe slate), fairy (metallic deep lavender), mystic (blue pearl), dream (turquoise), crystal (iridescent champagne), pixie (golden pink), believe (pearl highlight).

 

tarte-pro-glitter-liner-rose-goldTarteist Pro Glitter Liner ($20, LE): I am super stoked about this, and wish I hadn’t recently bought the Eye Jewels liner in gold, because that means I can’t justify getting this and I SO want it. This dual-ended rose gold liquid liner is literally like liquid metal, and the other side houses rose gold glitter liner for when you really want to go all out. It’s so dreamy, and super long-wearing.

Click through to see the rest of this collection (it’s totally worth a peek!). Continue reading

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Tarte Launches Athleisure Collection, Steals My Heart

Tarte launched their athleisure cosmetics collection with the launch of their Lifted Sweatproof Mascra ($21) late last year. I never wrote about that mascara, but have been wearing it nearly everyday because it holds a curl amazingly and doesn’t smudge or flake till I take it off at night.

I am seriously loving the just-launched products that they added to the athleisure collection, because they’re so practical, whether or not you spend every free minute at the gym. These products are workhorses; they’re made to throw in your bag and freshen you up between work and cocktails, or to refresh you after a workout. Most products of this nature that I’ve used in the past didn’t blow me away in terms of performance. Lifted did (it’s a pretty glam mascara!), and now I’m excited to try out these new products because I’m sure they will be my new staples.

tarte-clean-queen-vegan-deodorantClean Queen All-Natural Deodorant ($14): Aluminum-free, alcohol-free, vegan, in cute packaging, and currently being shipped to my front door.

tarte-hair-goals-dry-shampooHair Goals Dry Shampoo ($19, LE): Note the Lifted mascara I mentioned above. This dry shampoo was inspired by the ingredients in that, meaning you’ll get volume while sopping up grease so you can rock day-old (or three-days-old, I don’t judge) hair that looks artfully lived-in. And yep, this is vegan, too. It’s limited edition, so snap it up while it’s still available!

tarte-faux-glow-tannerGlow with the Faux Foaming Self-Tanner with Mitt ($39, LE): You get rich, deep color the minute you apply this foaming self-tanner, and the color fully develops in just two hours. This too is vegan, alcohol-free, and hypoallergenic, so you can get an even glow without it irritating your skin.

tarteguard20Tarteguard 20 Tinted Moisturizer ($36): This tinted moisturizer is a spin on the Tarteguard sunscreen that the brand launched two years ago. Oil-free, contains non-chemical SPF20, and delivers natural sheer-to-light coverage. Perfect for tossing in your purse or gym bag for during-the-day/post-workout touch-ups. It’s currently available in three shades: light, light-medium, and medium. I hope they extend the shade range to suit more skin tones.

Have you tried any of Tarte’s athleisure products? What do you think of them?

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Juice Beauty Phyto-Pigments Flash Luminizers

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A shade from the Blush/Rose stick

I’m making an effort to whittle down my makeup to organic products. Juice Beauty offered to let me try their Phyto-Pigments Flash Luminzer line, and since they pride themselves on organic ingredients, I was happy to give these highlighter/cheek color combo sticks a whirl.

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The Golden side of the Golden/Bronze stick

There are two highlighter/cheek color combinations (Blush & Rose and Cream & Marigold), and one bronzer/contouring stick (Golden & Bronze). The stick is a hollow tube with two cream sticks housed inside. Push on one, and the opposite end of the stick pops out, and vice versa.

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The Marigold shade in the Cream/Marigold stick

These are so simple to use. You just swipe the darker color onto the apples of your cheeks directly from the stick for a light flush, and do the same with the highlighter on your cheekbones. Then gently tap your skin with your fingertips to blend. The end result is subtle color and highlight (or contouring and highlight, if you’re using the bronzer option).IMG_8467Out of the three available shades, my least favorite was the Golden/Bronze (bronze pictured above). Because the products are so subtle, I didn’t feel like the shades made enough of an impact to use for contouring and highlighting.IMG_8473These are really subtle and soft on the skin, as you can see above. The effect is a subdued glow that looks natural, whether you’re going for a gentle flush on the cheeks or a cheekbone highlight. The sticks are available on Juice Beauty’s website and at Bloomingdales, and retail for $32 each.

The products in this post were provided for consideration by Juice Beauty.

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Too Faced Summer ’17: Natural Love

Too Faced’s highly-anticipated summer collection launches online today, and it’s super pretty. The entire line is now available on Too Faced’s and Sephora’s websites, and a sales associate from Sephora told me it is also in stores today.

too-faced-natural-love-eyeshadowThe Natural Love Eyeshadow Collection ($59) is the center of the collection. It contains 30 shades, most of which are neutrals, with some color (midtone purple, army green, bronze, black, etc.) thrown in to give you even more versatility. As you know, I’m a huge fan of Too Faced shadows; they are incredibly pigmented, blend so easily, and wear really nicely. This palette gives you the opportunity to create endless looks.

Image via PopSugarThe Love Light Prismatic Highlighter ($30) is garnering a lot of attention on social media, between its cream-to-powder formula, high shine, and pretty heart-shaped compact. This highlighter employs spherical pearls, rather than traditional crushed pearls, to highlight high points of the face from all angles. Available in Blinded by the Light (champagne), Ray of Light (rose gold), and You Light Up My Life (gold). Image via PopSugar

too-faced-chocolate-brow-nieChocolate Brow-nie ($23) is Too Faced’s latest solution for bold brows. I’m not really into this because I really don’t want a pencil that makes my brows smell like chocolate, but these waterproof, cocoa-infused pencils condition brow hairs while filling in the shape. They claim to be waterproof for 12 hours. Available in Taupe, Soft Brown, Deep Brown, and Auburn.

too-faced-melted-matteMelted Matte Liquid Lipstick ($21) launches in four new shades: Granny Panties Wine Not?, Wicked, Suck It, Holy Chic!, and Jawbreaker.

Have you tried any of the products in this collection? What do you think of them?

Images via Too Faced except where noted.

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Cover FX Custom Enhancer Drops: The Ultimate Highlight

cover-fx-custom-enhancer-dropsIt’s no secret that I’m all about highlighter (see here, here, and here). I’ve been using Cover FX Custom Enhancer Drops ($42) for a few months now and kept putting off writing about it because photographs do not do this product justice. But, I’m giving it my best shot.

IMG_6926This is truly like liquid metal. It is the most intense highlight when applied directly from the eyedropper applicator. I literally use one drop to highlight both cheekbones. I got the shade Moonlight. I was hesitant that it would be too dark for my skin, but this stuff is a pale peachy-pinky-silvery dream that really flatters my skin both in its natural state and after I’ve applied self-tanner.

IMG_6928This is perfection when used as a highlighter, but you can also mix a drop (or two) into your foundation to make you look glowy, radiant, healthy and ethereal. When added to foundation or tinted moisturizer, this makes skin come alive; you glow like you ran a half-marathon or woke up from a glorious eight-hour sleep.

Now that I’ve tried this highlighter, I can’t live without it. I will never let my supply diminish, because it’s so glowy-dreamy!IMG_6930

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