Wednesday, June 30, 2010

SKINCARE REVIEW: Ren Keep Young and Beautiful SH2C Serum

REN has been one of my favorite skincare lines for years.  Before it was "cool" to have eco-friendly, natural ingredient, bio active skincare, REN had already made a name for itself.  Their products are not only pleasurable to use, they are truly effective, and in some cases non-equalled in the world of skincare, much less in the world of synthetic-free, clean bio active, eco-friendly skincare. This brand truly is a visionary brand, and they keep getting better!

So when I saw REN was launching a new anti-aging serum, I just had to try it.  Keep Young and Beautiful is a serum that promises to give radiant, smoother, younger looking skin. Claims are that instantly skin feels firmer, plumper, lifted and that it reduces the appearance of fine lines and keeps skin looking younger for longer. hey, who wouldn't want to get on board for that?  What can one expect when using Keep Young and Beautiful?

•Radiant, smoother, younger looking skin
•Skin feels firmer, plumper and lifted
•Helps reduce appearance of fine lines
•Regulates skin tone, repairs and brightens complexion

Hexapeptides from yeast stimulate skin renewal and synthesis of skin firming proteins
Native peptides act as a safe alternative to Botox to smooth expression lines, also encouraging natural collagen filling of fine lines
Glycosaminoglycans from corn provide lasting hydration
Hyaluronic acid increases moisture levels to plump up the skin
Sirtuin increases the longevity of skin cells to promote natural repair of sun damaged skin 
Vitamin C corrects skin tone, illuminates and brightens the complexion
You're going to be reading more about the ingredient Sirtuin in the coming days on For the Love of Beauty.  With a number of other up-and-coming advanced skincare ingredients, Sirtuin is showing lots of promise in the anti-aging range, receiving both scientific and editorial praise for its ability to actually prolong cell life.  We already know the importance of hexapeptides as an active ingredient in stimulating skin renewal and firming properties. They help to boost collagen and elastin. The native peptides used in this serum are sourced from wheat, which assist in reducing wrinkles, and of course hyaluronic acid plumps and hydrates.

So here's the scoop.  The milky serum is easily absorbed into clean skin and, true to the claims, instantly provides a firming, matte yet hydrated, healthy, renewed finish. You'll notice as you warm the serum in your hands then apply to the face that the serum takes on an almost starchy feel to it (see photo #3 above).  That's ok.  It's still going to blend. With continued use you'll notice wrinkles appear plumped from the inside out, skin becomes soft and brightened, signs of aging appear diminished (spots, ruddiness, dullness), and skin just looks energized and fresh. The scent is so reminiscent of what we've come to expect from REN too, that fabulous subtle damascus rose with a fresh herbal blending - gorgeous!
REN Keep Youg and Beautiful SH2C Serum is a winner; one of their best serums yet! Retailing for $75 and packaged in the always appreciated glass pump bottle, there is a little over 1 oz in each bottle.  REN Keep Young and Beautiful SH2C Serum is available exclusively at Space.NK Apothecary.

GILT: Vera Wang on SALE Today!

Vera Wang is for women who understand clothes. After years spent designing a wildly successful bridal collection, in 2004 Wang launched her ready-to-wear line, using the same ultra-feminine but often serious aesthetic. With elegant, muted colors, rich fabrics and luxe details, Vera Wang’s covetable collection is consistently chic. Her layers of texture and thoughtful silhouettes are romantic and often a bit whimsical, made with an eye to intellect and history.

Borrowing from the romantic, feminine aesthetic that launched her career as a top bridal designer, Vera Wang further impressed the fashion masses in 2004 with the launch of her ready-to-wear line. Whimsical, figure-flattering silhouettes rule the collection: Take a look at this burgundy frock, a frothy knee-length confection, with asymmetrical, tiered layers of silk organza, a sheer back, and an optional belt for a cinched waist. Or accessorize with this opaque beaded necklace featuring the luxe details Wang is known for, with floral ceramic beading and crystal accents held together by delicate tulle.

The sale begins Wed., 6/30/10 @ 11 AM CT
Not a member? No problem. You may register for free.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Shiseido's Dick Page Glowing Matte Lipsticks

Yep, no doubt about it, when Dick Page puts his creative genius into something, it's gonna be a winner! Literally.  And this isn't the first time Page has created a lippie ... each gorgeous in its own right.

This time, it's Shiseido's Perfect Rouge Glowing Matte in RS798 (Damson), a shade he created exclusively for Macy's.  The votes are in - 15 international Marie Claire beauty editors named Glowing Matte as one of their April must-have beauty products.  The lipstick has a velvety, matte texture that envelops lips in a natural, semi-transparent color; is very moisturizing as well.

Video: Dick Page backstage artistry Shiseido Perfect Rouge campaign

Perfect Rouge Glowing Matte is a matte lipstick unlike any before that provides exquisite smoothness while maintaining the gentle luster of bare lips.  Intense moisture and a soft luminosity allow color to glide on with a luxurious feel.  Its lightweight formula feels like you're not wearing anything at all yet provides a chic finish that lasts long past what we've come to expect in a sheer, silky lipstick. Other shades besides the one Page created for Macy's are: RD722 Whisper, BR323 Wink, PK224 Sugar Babe and RD325 Coral Glow.

Shiseido Perfect Rouge Glowing Matte in RS798 retails for $25 and is available exclusively at Macy's. The other Perfect Rouge Glowing Matte shades are available at Shiseido beauty counters and online at

HAIRCARE REVIEW: Dermatologist Developed Clear Poreformance Antibacterial Shampoo and Conditioner

I had an opportunity to try Clear Poreformance Antibacterial Shampoo and Conditioner and decided to pass it around to the rest of my family to test as well.  With two teenage kids in the house, I figure this line could be very useful - lots of activity, perspiration, and oily-combo skins coming in and out the shower here!

Developed by dermatologists Sheri Feldman, MD and Louise Stewart, MD, both highly trained physicians with booming private practices in California, who founded SheriLou, Inc. in 2007 to especially target one area of patient care they felt was sorely lacking - teenagers, young adults and sports enthusiasts with oily, irritated scalps.  With products on the market treating acne and oily skin they weren't finding products that specifically treated a special concern of many of their patients. They wanted to develop products that would treat oily, blemish prone skin specifically on the scalp. 

Clear Poreformance is a line of uniquely formulated antibacterial products that alleviates issues of oily, irritated, blemish prone scalp, skin and beard.  Clear Poreformance's special features include:
  • Antibacterial - diminishes the overgrowth of bacteria caused by excess oil and sweat, and kills bacteria at the root of irritations, blemishes and folliculitis
  • Deep Pore Cleansing - cleans pores of oil, dirt, grime and dead skin cells that can cause blemishes
  • Sebum Control - helps reduce the production of sebum long term fro a more normalized scalp
  • Signature Blend of Ingredients - scietifically proven antibacterial, traditional and botanical complex for maximum effectiveness

Their special ingredients include:

Safe and gentle broad-spectrum antibacterial ingredient FDA approved for use on the skin.

Azelaic Acid
A naturally occurring mild acid that has antibacterial properties, and helps exfoliate the skin.

Manuka Oil (Leptospermum Scoparium)
Originally from New Zealand, this botanical ingredient has shown activity against a wide range of micro-organisms that cause irritation and infection of the skin.

Australian Myrtle (Backhousia Citriodora)
This fragrant Australian botanical is a natural antibacterial as well as an anti-fungal agent.

Chaulmoogra Oil (Taraktogenos Kurzii)
A plant native to the tropical areas of Malaysia and the Indian Subcontinent. It has antibacterial properties.

Pumpkin Extract (Cucurbita Pepo) and Sea Water Complex
Pumpkin Extract was first cultivated in the Americas and is now used in many parts of the world. It has also been traditionally used in Chinese medicine. In addition to containing gentle oils, this extract has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. With the addition of Sea Water, this Complex inhibits the secretion of histamines, which stabilizes and calms irritated and inflamed skin.

Black Cumin Oil (Nigella Sativa)
This botanical is used topically to strengthen hair and nails and leave a glossy finish. In addition, it is a potent anti-inflammatory agent, antioxidant and antimicrobial.

Magnolia Officinalis Bark Extract
Native to China and the Southeastern United States, this extract is a strong antioxidant ingredients with anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties.

Soybean Extract (Glycine Soja), Rice Extract (Oriza Sativa) and Palm Fruit Extract (Elaeis Guineensis) Complex
This natural complex is a strong antioxidant and provides protection to the hair from UV and other environmental damage. It also helps to keep hair color fresh and vibrant, with minimal fading.

With its special antibacterial and botanical ingredients, Clear Poreformance products are perfect for athletes, sports enthusiasts, teens with oily-combination skin, and those who wear hats, helmuts and head gear routinely especially in the hot sun or when particularly active like cycling or working out.

My scoop on shampoo and conditioner is that the products both perform expertly.  One gets a nice lather from the sulfate-free shampoo and a light conditioning from the conditioner.  One drawback for me, with the 40-year old naturally curly, color-treated hair, is that my hair dries a bit "crunchy" when using these products, like one might expect when one shampoos but forgets the conditioner.  However, my son, who is 18, extremely active, works out at the gym sometimes multiple times per day and is prone to blemishes and oily skin and hair, loves this duo.  His hair dries fresh, clean, and remarkably soft.  It has a gentle effect on his hair and skin, whereas on mine I feel it dries me out.  I need a deeper condition and a gentle touch.

Both the shampoo and the conditioner retail for $18.95 each (a bit steep even for dermatologist haircare me thinks), though you do get a full 8 oz in each bottle.  Clear Poreformance is adding an Antibacterial Shave Cream to their lineup, which will also retail for $18.95 a 6 oz tube.  The Shave Cream will include the proprietary blend of Azelaic Acid, Manuka and Australian Myrtle to support the deep pore cleansing action of Triclosan for increased performance. Calming botanical ingredients are infused to soothe the skin, helping to reduce redness, irritation and reduce razor bumps.  I know my son would adore the Shave Cream, so we'll be on the lookout for it.

Here's your opportunity to win a year's supply of Clear Poreformance Shampoo & Conditioner.
Contest ends 12/10/10

For more information or to purchase Clear Poreformance products, please visit them online at

Luxury Skincare Brand Sisley Paris Arrives at Bliss Spa + GWP

Yummmmmm!  I've adored Sisley's luxurious, botancially infused skincare for many, many years.  I remember first sampling the brand through their Sage Cleansing Milk. I don't think I've ever found a cleansing milk quite so light, freshening and ultimately divine since then.

Famed French brand Sisley ‘sprouted’ from the fertile mind of Hubert d’Ornano in 1976, when using botanicals in beauty was a major breakthrough. As one of the pioneers of phytocosmetology, he knew a few things about using flora to make skin look more fabulous. Combine that know-how with his insistence on a limitless scientific research budget, and you’ve planted the ‘seeds’ for some pretty powerful (and posh) potions.

Sisley practically wrote the book on phytocosmetology, or the use of natural plant extracts in beauty products–and considering there are over 800,000 plants on Earth, it’s more like an Encyclopedia.

Sisley is dedicated to plucking the best of the botanical bunch for their formulas. After studying the benefits of a plant’s key active ingredients, each is scrupulously selected: the geographic origin, time of harvest, part of the plant used and ideal dosage are all taken into account. And with all that grade-A greenery, you’ll look downright gorgeous.

Another key feature in Sisley products, essential oils are highly concentrated plant extracts obtained through distillation. They are non-greasy, volatile substances, with scents that are specific to each plant. Sisley only uses essential oils of the utmost quality–the very quality selected by aromatherapy doctors and pharmaceutical laboratories for its high degree of purity. This is how Sisley obtains maximum effectiveness and skin tolerance for its products.
While every essential oil has its specific function, all essential oils share the following 5 actions:

• They are very quickly absorbed into the skin, carrying with them all the other active ingredients contained in the formula into the skin tissue.
• They help stimulate surface microcirculation, promoting cellular regeneration and oxygenation.
• They have germicidal properties.
• They work through the olfactory system and diffuse through the body.
• They work like natural preservatives, allowing the considerably reduce the use of synthetic preservatives in a product.

At Sisley, new products consistently correspond to genuine scientific breakthroughs. A new product is only launched when it ensures higher performance than all existing products on the market, even if this calls for 10 years of research before it can finally see the light of day! And in order to obtain this result, Sisley researchers are free of any financial or time constraints.
sisley hydra global intense anti-aging hydrationsisley cleansing milk with sagesisley express flower gel mask

Sisley products I can personally recommend:

Sisley Hydra Global Intense Anti-Aging Hydration - Developed with a three-tiered approach to treatment, this formula uses botanical, mineral and aromatic extracts to replenish the skin’s thirsty moisture cushion in the epidermis, dermis and stratum corneum layers of the skin. Plumps up the skin’s moisture cushion. Facilitates water circulation between the cells. Reduces oxidative stress that contributes to skin dehydration. Love, love, love this!

Sisley Cleansing Milk with Sage  - Sage is a known astringent with properties that help bust blackhead-causing clogs from overly anxious oil glands. This light and refreshing lotion-cleanser removes makeup and keeps pores purged to boot. It’s purifying, rejuvenating, toning. Removes makeup and impurities. Helps eliminate excess sebum. Leaves skin clean and soft.

Sisley Express Flower Gel Mask - A refreshing cream-gel mask that softens and revives skin in just 3 minutes. Floral-infused with moisture maximizing lily and iris.Ideal for tired, stressed-out skin that could use a radiance resuscitation and energy enhancement, this quickie leave-on treatment creates fabulously firm, super-supple, fiercely fresh, and beautifully bright skin almost instantly. Works wonders as a wakeup call before a big night out. Erases visible signs of fatigue and stress. Moisturizes, re-plumps and tones the skin. Firms and tightens slack skin.

What you can skip? The Sisleya Global Anti-Aging Cream. Now I suspect I'll reap many enemies on that as that cream enjoys a huge cult following and is wildly popular internationally, but I tell ya', it just does nothing for me. Save your $400! I can recommend many, many other anti-aging creams that do a much better job, so if you're interested drop me a line and I'll be happy to give you the scoop.

For more information and to shop Sisley at Bliss, visit them online at Blissworld.

MAC In the Groove Collection

You ready for another gorge collection for the fantabulous MAC Cosmetics?  If so, you're in for a fun ride with the blended themed inspiration behind In the Groove.

Every once in a while don’t you just want to let go, feel the flow, and get In The Groove? Start with a little ’70s Batik, add some ’80s Neo-Mod Tie-Dye fun, some Marrakech mystique, and you’re feeling groovy! A modern, flowing and fabulous way with bold, kaleidoscopic colour combined with boho charm and up-to-the-minute catwalk style. Nine NEW Mineralize Eye Shadows, six Cremesheen Lipsticks, six Cremesheen Glass, four Mineralize Skinfinish Powders, and five NEW Mineralize Blush Duos. Shadows are matte, sans glitter and in a trio format. Creamy lips play perfectly off Mineralize satin-smooth eyes. Turn on and groove out!

I'll have lots more information for you before week's end on this collection, but thought I'd tempt you with a few images in the meantime.  So many lemmings in this lot!  MAC In the Groove will be available at MAC counters July 8, 2010.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Talika Cosmetics Invites You to a Contest and Free Product!

Great news! TALIKA COSMETICS shared some exciting news with us today and I know you'll want in.

Talika specializes in the care of the eyes, complexion, and body. This quiet miracle worker gets lots of love from celebrities: Drew Barrymore, Dennis Alexander, Rachael Ray and countless makeup artists and consultants who have unlocked Talika's secrets.

Well, Talika is celebrating the launch of its improved, best-selling eyelash growth product LIPOCILS EXPERT by holding a contest that offers every registrant a free product! (full size, I might add) This is a value of $55! Talika is so confident in the effectiveness of Lipocils Expert (claims say proven results in 28 days) that they're going to post Before and After videos/photos of its registrants. The winner of the best video following the 28 days of trial period will receive $1,000 in Talika products with prizes for 2nd and 3rd place too.


  • GRAND PRIZE: Win a collection of Talika products worth $1000, with products for eye contour, lashes and brows, along with anti aging skin care. Winner will be featured on, Twitter and our Facebook Fan Page.
  • 2ND PRIZE:  Win a collection of Talika products worth $500. Winner will be featured on, Twitter, and our Facebook Fan Page.
  • 3RD PRIZE:  Win a 6-month supply of Lipocils Expert to keep your lashes big, bold and beautiful.

BEFORE                                                                   AFTER

Here’s How it Works
We’ll send you the new Lipocils Expert lash booster for FREE. All you have to do is submit a video to share your experience using the product, and your before and after results. All videos are entered into the contest, and featured online on our Facebook contest page and web site where friends and visitors can vote for the preferred video. Our panel of judges will select the Grand Prize winner.

Step 1: Get your Free Lipocils Expert by registering below
Step 2: Start your video documentation, be sure to get a good before shot
Step 3: Submit video after 28 days of use to show your results (Talika will send a link)

Contest Period
Register for your free Lipocils Expert between June 11th 2010 12:00 am and July 31st 11:59 pm ET
Submit your videos between July 11th and September 11th , 2010
Winners to be announced on September 15th , 2010

The contest is now live and registration will remain open until July 31st. The last video must be posted by August 31st and winners will be announced between September 3rd and September 15th, 2010.

JETSETTER: Napa Valley, California Awaits (and on sale!)

Yet another travel destination to add to the wishlist, my angels. 

Here's what Jetsetter correspondent Amy Westervelt has to say about this exquisite destination location - Bardessono in Napa Valley, Yountville, California.

Just a short walk from some of Napa Valley’s best restaurants and wineries, Bardessono aims to be the greenest resort in the area. Built on six acres of the Bardessono family's land, this Italian-inspired hotel is low-key and down to earth. Every element, from the rusting steel to the recycled cyprus wood, has been carefully chosen by skilled artisans. Every room is a spa suite, which means a therapist comes to you, and when your massage is over you can relax in the giant soaking tub or in your private courtyard. With a rooftop pool for lounging and carbon fiber bicycles for exploring, Bardessono is a luxuriously moody escape in the heart of Yountville.

  • Every room is a spa suite
  • Rooftop pool never closes
  • The greenest and only LEED Platinum hotel in California
  • Contemporary design with reclaimed wood and earth tones
  • On-site gardens and local farmers supply restaurant

  • Quiet and adult-focused; not great for kids
  • Bulk dispensers for shampoo and soap (so, beauty addicts, you can bring your faves)
  • Need to drive/ride to wine-tasting vineyards
  • Poolside dining is now available

  • Eco-friendly, Food and Wine, Off the Beaten Path
Sipping champagne by Bardessono’s rooftop pool and looking out at the Stags Leap palisades and Mayacama Mountains, I would never have guessed that this place gets most of its energy from solar panels or that the hot tub is heated by a geothermal system. But that’s the whole point. Bardessono lives up to its eco-luxury claims discreetly. Once home to the Bardessono family, who emigrated here from Italy in part because of the Tuscan-style scenery, Bardessono is now a modern escape fit for any city dweller, yet it's truly at one with nature.

Situated in downtown Yountville, north of most of Napa’s vineyards, the 540-square-foot California modern guestrooms are surrounded by a series of four courtyards, giving the property an intimate feel. Bardessono’s skillful design makes use of local and recycled items like wood reclaimed from a walnut orchard and rusty steel beams. These details, so carefully chosen, give the hotel a soulful quality. I half expect a family member to greet me at the door.

After spending the better part of a day lounging by the pool, sipping award-winning vino and taking in the view of the resort’s vineyards, I head back to my room for a massage. Generally, I like the whole ritual of going to a spa — checking in, changing into a robe, hanging out in the relaxation room — but given that all of the 62 rooms at Bardessono are spa suites, I decide to give the in-room massage a try. (You do have the option of getting your service done in the spa.) Truth be told, it’s pretty awesome when my therapist opens the hidden massage table tucked away in my bathroom. Each of the earth-toned suites has a private landscaped courtyard and indoor and outdoor showers.

Bardessono is directly across the street from Thomas Keller’s Bouchon Bakery and within walking distance of Ad Hoc, Keller’s rustic family-style restaurant. After my lazy afternoon, I walk over for a late reservation and feast on black mission fig marmalade on palladin toast and pork chops. It is without doubt one of the best meals of my life. In my food-bliss, I feel like a night swim; Bardessono's rooftop pool never closes, so it works out perfectly.

The Steam Spa-Suite has large glass panes, a gas fireplace and a private furnished courtyard. I warm up in the indoor shower/steam room and crawl into bed, full and completely relaxed. I don’t notice the organic sheets or bamboo flooring, just how comfy the bed is.

  • Dine. When you don’t have hundreds of dollars and several months to wait for a reservation at French Laundry, Ad Hoc is there with everything that makes Thomas Keller great at a fraction of the price (Prix fixe menu $49).
  • Bite. The magic of Bouchon Bakery: perfect buttery croissants, macaroons that melt in your mouth, baguettes that taste better than you ever thought they could.
  • Taste. Within walking distance from Bardessono, Jessup Cellars offers free tastings, a rarity in wine country these days.
  • Eat. Food Network chef Michael Chiarello earns his celeb status every night with handmade pasta and house-cured meats at Bottega Ristorante, one of the best Italian restaurants in Napa.
  • Sip. Operating out of an actual caboose from an abandoned train (attached to the Napa Railway Inn), the Coffee Caboose serves coffee good enough to keep up with the town’s four-star restaurants, compliments of independent San Francisco roaster Ritual.

Ok, so intrigued?  You can book a suite for a hugely discounted price now through Wednesday, yet travel in July!

  • Elevated Spa-Suite from $360/night (reg $672) 550 sq ft, gas fireplace, private furnished balcony, views
  • Steam Spa-Suite from $380/night (reg $697) Private courtyard, 550 sq ft, shower-steam room, outdoor shower

The Bardessono Napa Valley SALE ends later tonight, so be sure to check them out for all the information, to hold your room or to visit other lovely travel destination opportunities.  Jetsetter is free to register, so please Be My Guest! xo

HAUTELOOK: Junior Drake Luscious Leather Handbag SALE!

The classy but edgy style of Junior Drake handbags attracts women of all ages who are confident in their own style, strive to make a statement, and exude a distinctive personality.

The Junior Drake team has developed a reputation for conceiving fresh design concepts that offer couture style and affordable quality.

Their handbags can be distinguished not only by the soft Italian leather, quality craftsmanship, detailed hardware and handcrafted flourishes, but also by its unique source of inspiration: Junior Drake.

Every time you go into your handbag, you'll see the silk lining with Junior Drake's image looking up at you. She reminds you that it's what's inside that makes you feel good and look good. "It's not the bag, it's the girl!"

Alright, well, kinda dorky ... that promotional wording up top (not mine, by the way, I ain't owning that). And I even took the words Junior Drake out a couple of times and inserted a pronoun instead cuz I couldn't stand looking at it another time. I don't know. What do you think? Despite the "It's all about Junior Drake, Junior Drake, Junior Drake," commotion, these handbags are luxuriously soft, chic yet classic, and never go out of style.  I'll be at the sale for sure!

The Junior Drake handbag sale starts Mon., 6/28/10 @ 10 AM CT.

Not a member? Don't worry, registration is absolutely free.
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