Top 10 New Hair Care Lines

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There’s been a lot of hair care hitting my doorstep lately. Some brands I’ve heard of before and some I’ve never even seen a blip of. Since they’ve been arriving in 2016 I’ve been giving them all a go… and so has my husband, son and daughter. Because it’s go all or go home when it comes to hair care 😉 Below I’ve picked out a few of my (our) favorites from what’s shown up and discussed why they’re awesome to make up this weeks Top 10 Tuesday – New Hair Care Lines.

1 // The largest collection of products I have to share in this list are from Matrix. This first group is from the StyleLink Collection which is their award-winning styling line. A couple are missing from the photo because my husband stole them… basically his holy grail hair styling product of choice was from Redken and they broke his heart and discontinued it. Around that time all of this stuff from Matrix showed up and he fell in love with the Over Achiever 3-in-1 ($18.00 // ULTA Beauty) and the Shape Switcher($18.00 // ULTA Beauty). He likes to have all-day hold but not have his hair look overly crunchy because then he says his hair looks like it’s thinning =| High maintenance.

My personal faves from StyleLink are the Smooth Setter Smoothing Cream($18.00 // ULTA Beauty) and Height Riser Volumizing Powder ($18.00 // ULTA Beauty). The Smoothing Cream really helps keep my frizz at bay without weighing it down in all the wrong places. Height Riser sucks up the excessive oil in my crown and gives an excellent hold all day.

2 // In keeping with the Matrix love we need to talk about the best smelling line of hair care in all of the land – Oil Wonders Volume Rose. Yes, you just saw “Oil” and “Volume” in the same title. I was a big skeptic because I wrestle with a very oily scalp, yet my favorite product from this line ended up being the Oil Wonders Volume Rose Plumping Mousse ($20.00 // ULTA Beauty). It kept frizz down and added volume… all without making my hair look oily. By days end my style still looked good, though it didn’t last into the next day like with Height Riser. When I’m looking for a sleeker style and the overall appearance of thick hair this one is my choice.

3 // You didn’t think I’d let Matrix swing on by without talking about dry shampoo did you? A lot of dry shampoos cross my path (since I basically need to inhale it to survive my oily headed life) but the Miracle Extender ($16.00 // ULTA Beauty) has me at another level. Super fab second day hair without the residue AND it smells TDF. YAAASSSS.

4 // StriVectin does hair care?! OF COURSE! Their Color Care Line($22.00-$29.00 // ULTA Beauty) is fabulous for not only keeping your dye job in check but will give you the qualities of strength, vibrancy, easy to manage… all those things youthful, untreated hair has. My hair feels shiny and soft even when I’m due for a touch-up at the salon. There are several other collections within the line, so if Color Care isn’t up your alley make sure to check the others out.

5 // If you’re looking to remove impurities pick yourself up some AveenoPure Renewal Shampoo & Conditioner($5.99 // Target). They use natural seaweed extract to refresh and make hair more manageable without over-stripping.

6 // For vitamin-infused, professional hair care you’ll want to look intoMitch Stone Shampoo & Conditioner($36.00 set // Mitch Stone). The line contains VComps which is a “proprietary blend of carefully-curated vitamins, minerals and oils, swirled together in a lush papaya base”. I loved how this worked well for both myself and my daughter (who has dry hair).

7 // When I think about a “pin-up” I’m immediately jealous. Killer bod, gorgeous skin, the best red lipstick and THE BEST HAIR. Beauty and Pinupsis a line I’ve never heard of but I was more than willing to give them a test run because of my pin-up obsession as well as the gorgeous packaging. There is a lot to choose from but my favorite item is the Sway Blow Out Styling Primer($26.00 // Beauty and Pin Ups). It cuts down on drying time while also cutting down on frizz. My daughter, with her dry hair, loves the Flaunt Silkening Shampoo and the Luxe Leave-In Spray On Revitalizing Conditioner.

8 // My holy grail for extending the look of my highlights in between touch-ups (as you know) is the John FriedaSheer Blonde line ($3.59 // ULTA Beauty). This extends the look of highlights for me so that I’m only going every other month rather than every month.

9 // Speaking of extending things you know that the Redken Pillow Proof($20.00 // ULTA Beauty) holds an extra special place in my heart. I use this frequently for getting an extra day out of my style and absorbing oils. I also need to give a major shout out to Braid Aid($25.00 // ULTA Beauty) because it’s literally the only way I can style my daughters hair and Beach Envy Volume Wave Aid ($20.00 // ULTA Beauty) for being my beach wavy hair drug of choice this coming Summer.

10 // Did you really think I’d let a Top 10 go by without mentioning the brand that started my entire frizz free lifestyle? Living Proofholds many faves of mine, most notably the no frizz line. Now they have a No Frizz Nourishing Oil($20.00 // Sephora). An OIL, you say? For this oily head? YES. Because I keep it only from the nape of the neck to the ends. It’s best for coarse hair, so a very little will do ya if you’re just trying to combat weather related frizzies.




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3 Steps to Total Face Pampering at Home feat. StriVectinLABS™

About a year and a half ago the Makeup Wars Bloggers featured our favorite face masks. For this go-around I wanted to share more than a favorite mask. Recently StriVectinLABS released some awesome new products that are perfect for a little at-home spa day. Using these three products – the 5-Minute Weekly Glycolic Peel, the Anti-Wrinkle Hydra Gel Treatment System and the Extreme Cream – I’m excited to share with you how I’ve been pampering my face right at home!

(One) I begin with the StriVectinLABS 5-Minute Weekly Glycolic Peel($89.00). This is a two step skin resurfacing treatment that exfoliates with the highest level of lycolic acid and other AHA acids available for home use. This system reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and diminishes the look of pores. I love this peel because it’s easy to use and doesn’t take forever. You put on step one, which primes the face, then after one minute apply step two over-top and allow that to sit for 3-5 minutes. I feel a slight burning sensation on my cheeks (which is always the driest area of my face) but it’s not burning like you have to remove it right away. Call me crazy but I like to be able to feel things working. After the time is up wipe it off and you’re all finished with the peel!

(Two) Next I pull out the StriVectinLABS Anti-Wrinkle Hydra Gel Treatment System ($69.00) and get at my eyes. I’m so paranoid about lines by the eyes so I like to use those patches underneath. The two-step pair of products utilize hyaluronic acid to deliver moisture to skin, instantly plumping and smoothing signs of aging in just 15 minutes while patented NIA114 technology seals in the actives and helps reduce all types of expression lines. These are great because they’re not just for the eye area, but are also for any area that you’re concerned about (wrinkle wise) such as between the brows or even those smile lines by the mouth. Once you remove the patch(es) you apply step 2, which is a Anti-Wrinkle Smoothing Balm. You get a total of 8 patches and one tube of smoothing balm per box.

(Three) I finish up by applying the StriVectinLABS Extreme Cream($89.00) all over my face and neck. This feels amazing and stimulates deep hydration. Energizing Oxygen Complex renews the skin to activate cell renewal and stimulate collagen formation, diminishing the appearance of lines and wrinkles. I love that this cream sinks in quickly but I can tell it’s definitely hydrating because I wake up and my skin feels fresh and supple like I just applied my cream. It’s important to me that a cream doesn’t take long to absorb because I usually put it on right before I fall into bed. Who wants half their product on their pillow? You can be sure all of this is sinking right into your face.

You can purchase StriVectin products on their website or at Nordstrom.

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StriVectin-AR Advanced Retinol Concentrated Serum Photos + Review

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I’ve had the StriVectin-AR Advanced Retinol Concentrated Serum in my possession for a few months now. For me, results were apparent overnight but I wanted to be sure that LOVE was my final answer. At this point I should really know better. I love everything StriVectin!

I started out using this serum just 3-4 times a week (since my skin is sensitive) and am now up to using it 5 times a week because I’ve had no irritation issues and it works that well. My skin is noticeably smoother and spots appear lighter. Lines are diminished around my eye area especially (where I am the most paranoid about them right now). I recommend using this before an eye cream or night cream, but it’s definitely able to be used in conjunction with those items. It says on the box you can use this day and night before your moisturizer, so if you’re really looking to up your battle on wrinkles it’s certainly able to do that. When I run out I will absolutely purchase and keep this in my usual skincare routine.

StriVectin-AR Advanced Retinol Concentrated Serum retails for $119.00 and is available at, Nordstrom, Ulta and

Top 10 Eye Creams for a 30-something

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Color me an old lady, but yes I’ve tried enough Eye Creams to make up a top 10 of my faves. I’m still in my early 30’s, but I’m completely obsessed with keeping away the crows feet. I have em… we all do, especially if we laugh a lot… but there are things we can use to prevent the worst of the lines, wrinkles and evil.

In no particular order:

  1. StriVectin-EV Get Even Dark Circle Corrector. This is more for lightening the dark circles, but it helps with lines a bit as well.
  2. Mario Badescu Hyaluronic Eye Cream. This is gentle and light but still actively keeps lines and wrinkles at bay. You can see results within a few days, which is perfect for me because I’m the instant gratification type!
  3. Reviva Labs Firming Eye Serum. The mulberry and lime help lighten dark circles while the other ingredients moisturize, fight puffiness and protect against future damage.
  4. Murad Hydro-Dynamic Ultimate Moisture for Eyes. I first used this in 2012 and it is great for moisture & restoring resiliency.
  5. Kate Somerville Line Release Under Eye Repair Cream. Used for firming and lifting the under eye area, I found it’s really great at keeping my lines hidden.
  6. Le Metier de Beaute Revive Eye Concentrate. This was the one I most recently finished and I loved how the product pumped out just enough product per eye. I felt I had great results with this when it came to reducing fine lines.
  7. Kiehl’s Rosa Arctica Eye Balm. I rebuy this all the time. I first reviewed this balm back in September of 2012 and found it works great as a brightener & hydrater, smoothing out crow’s feet over time. I also like to mix it with concealers that might feel a little too dry for some double duty.
  8. Neutrogena Healthy Skin Eye Cream. Dark Circles and puffiness be gone! This is one of the few drugstore eye creams I’ve tried that actually hydrates well and actually shows a difference.
  9. Dior Hydra Life BB Eye Crème. This is said to hide fatigue while reducing signs of aging. I’m still playing around, but so far I’m loving the results and how well this hides and hydrates. I will have a full review on this soon!
  10. Perricone MD Cold Plasma Eye. This feels so amazing under the eyes and really hydrates while absorbing quickly. Really fantastic for reducing the wrinkles!

I’m always down for trying more! What eye cream is your favorite?

Makeup Wars – My Beauty Diary

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This week for Makeup Wars we decided to do a beauty diary. Basically a “my day in beauty”. I tried to be diligent in writing down what I was using all day, so hopefully I don’t forget anything! Here’s what happens to my face, bod & hair throughout the day (beauty wise!).

Good morning!
I wake up around 7-8am (God willing, sometimes insomnia visits and that becomes around 3am). After my son is out the door I hop in the shower and hit my mug with Murad Clarifying Cleanser and my Clarisonic. I also like to use a lip scrub from LUSH. Currently I’m still using Santa Baby from Christmas. Once or twice a week I exfoliate my face with Kate Somerville ExfoliKate. For the bod I’ve been using Dove Pistachio Cream with Magnolia Body Wash & Body Bar. When shaving happens I generally use Schick Hydro Silk and Skintimate Shave Gel. Hair gets the AMAZE-BALLS OGX Sea Mineral Moisture Shampoo & Conditioner. I haven’t even been using a hair mask once a week, because the OGX is that good.

Out of the bathroom I start by applying Kate Somerville Anti-Bac Acne Treatment Lotion all over my face. Then I apply a spray lotion all over my body – something like the Vaseline Spray & Go or St. Ives Fresh Hydration Spray. The hair gets a generous hit of Living Proof No Frizz Styling Cream (starting at the ends and putting very little at the crown) and Agadir Argan Oil at the ends. My fave perfume is Chanel Chance EDT but lately I’m also reaching for Chloe Roses de Chloe.

In the interest of saving time I’ll just go through my daily makeup routine when I’m not actually going anywhere but the store or to pick the kids up from school. Generally (unless something is being tested) I start with the eyes and apply Urban Decay Primer Potion. MAC Utterly Becoming Paint Pot is an excellent base for all things eye balls and on top of that I go easy with Urban Decay Naked Basics or Hourglass Suede Visionaire Eye Shadow Duo. Lately I’ve been getting at my brows with Vincent Longo Eyebrow Micro Pencil and NARS Oural Brow Gel. For a liner I reach for something neutral like Marc Jacobs Ro(Cocoa), Urban Decay Hustle or MUFE Aqua Eyes in 24L. Mascara is usually IT Cosmetics Tightline and/or Milani Total Lash Cover. Face Makeup is IT Cosmetics Celebration Foundation, IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye/Hello Light Liquid Brightener and IT Cosmetics Full Coverage CC+ Cream. On the cheeks I’m using NARS Olympia for contouring and one of the six Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blushes. For my lips, when it’s just an easy day like this, it’s always some sort of sheer-semi sheer gloss like my current fave YSL Gloss Volupte in Golden (20).

Through the day…
During the day I usually just touch up as needed. Generally that just means a dusting of IT Cosmetics Celebration Foundation on the nose and reapplying gloss. More often than not, though, I just end up slicking on Jack Black Lip Balm (of which I’m obsessed with).

Nighty Night!
The makeup removal process is quick for me. I remove my eye makeup with MAC Gently Off Eye & Lip Remover. My makeup is removed by using Murad Clarifying Cleanser & the Clarisonic. Lately I’ve been obsessively staring at wrinkles by my eyes, so I start out my skincare regime with Le Metier de Beaute Revive Eye Concentrate and then I smooth on StriVectin SD Advanced. Because that isn’t moisturizing enough for me in the evening I also use Kate Somerville Oil-Free Moisturizer. I can’t fall asleep with dry lips so I always dab on a bit of LUSH Honey Trap Lip Balm. I also check for stray eye brow hairs that managed to pop up and get at them with my Tweezerman Tweezers.

After all of that I settle down to watch a show and slather on some LUSH Lemony Flutter & pop on my gloves.

I seriously didn’t feel high maintenance about myself until I wrote this post. Tell me I’m not alone!

Wrinkle Withdrawal, StriVectin SD Advanced™ and a Giveaway!

As a beauty blogger, I stare at my face on the computer screen at photos taken with a macro lens a lot more than your average everyday selfie aficionado. Macro shows off every.single.detail. On a phone selfie you can add what I like to call filter forgiveness, thereby making yourself look incredible. On a beauty blog, you can’t add the filter, because how would you show your readers what the accurate color of the makeup was or how it wears?

Because of this I need the best of the best wrinkle fighters that I can use year round to battle the fine lines I’m starting to get and prevent the future wrinkles that I know will appear eventually, all while keeping my skin hydrated as well as under control throughout all four seasons. StriVectin SD Advanced™ Intensive Concentrate for Wrinkles & Stretch Marks is said to show results within 15 days. I know. It doesn’t seem legit that anything could blast wrinkles that fast. For two weeks I integrated StriVectin SD Advanced into my daily skincare routine, making sure to use as directed both morning and night.

I didn’t notice anything right away, and I’m that instant gratification type, but I kept on with the regime until, about 12 days in I was sitting down and editing photos… and saw it. Nothing. Well, not nothing, but a definite retreat in the lines that I’d been noticing in that area between my eyebrows. My skin texture as a whole was also a lot smoother. To me, those kind of results are huge deal. I’m terrified of all things pointy, so Botox and anything needle-related is completely, 100% never happening.

So, the million dollar question is how does StriVectin’s SD Advanced™ wrinkle fighting moisturizer show results in such a short amount of time? They took not one, but TWO powerful anti-aging technologies – Collagex-CE Wrinkle Repair Complex™ (to target Collagen III – Youth Collagen – which aids in restoring skins elasticity and dramatically reducing the appearance of lines and wrinkles) and NIA-114™ (which provides skin with time-released energy to maximize skin performance and guard against the damage caused by the evils that float around within the environment).

At first you might balk at the price point. At $139 a pop you’re getting 4.5 oz of product. Doesn’t seem like a lot, but a little actually goes a long way. I imagine using twice a day I would run through this tube in approximately 150 days. However, it’s cheaper than products that say they have similar effects and, IMO, works better. The latter makes the value incredible. In the end, whether you’re just wanting to be preventative or need something more intense, a wrinkle cream that actually works should be at the top of your list. To learn more about StriVectin or to purchase products check out their website.

What interests you most about StriVectin SD Advanced Intensive Concentrate? Leave a comment below to enter for a chance to win a bottle of StriVectin SD Advanced Intensive Concentrate.Sweepstakes Rules: No duplicate comments.You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:1. Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post2. Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique terms in your tweet message: “#StriVectin” and “#SweepstakesEntry”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post3. Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post4. For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. The notification email will come directly from BlogHer via the sweeps@blogher email address. You will have 72 hours to respond; otherwise a new winner will be selected. The Official Rules are available here.This sweepstakes runs from 3/10/2014-4/11/2014.Be sure to visit the StriVectin brand page on where you can read other bloggers’ posts!