Smile Brilliant: GIVEAWAY!

Myself, and beautiful friend Jill of Glamamom were asked to be part of the Earl Jeans relaunch yesterday in NYC.  It was probably one of the coolest days I have had in a while:)  We modeled various looks soon to hit stores (Macy’s etc) all around Manhattan with amazing photographer, Udo Spreitzenbarth (he has worked with Tyra Banks) um, what?  One of the things I did to prep….whiten my teeth.  Gotta look your best to feel your best!  More to come on this collaboration and where to buy the killer (affordable) clothes:)

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REVIEW:

In my early twenties, while cheering for the NFL, I had my teeth professionally whitened.   As you would imagine, the result was gleaming white face full of teeth.  In years since, I have turned to over the counter whiteners…various brands and methods.  Haven’t we all?   Although, they haven’t provided the same result as the professional cleaning, it seemed to brighten my smile.  So, when I was initially asked to review Smile Brilliant, I declined.  The representative persisted, sharing some further details.  He explained this particular whitening program was great for teeth that have shifted….or weren’t perfectly aligned.  White trips just lay against the front of your teeth.  This program creates impressions for you to use, that fit the EXACT mold of your teeth. My bottom teeth have really shifted as I have gotten older, so I was sold.  Keeping it real….this is more complicated than your regular over the counter whitener.  Good news is the directions are very specific, and they even give you “redo” mold, just in case.  You can learn all about the process HERE.  I was VERY pleased with the result.  My teeth are the whitest they have been in a long time and although it was a little uncomfortable at first, after a while I didn’t even know I had the molds in.  I folded laundry, watched some TV…and then…”Voila”…gleaming (but natural) white teeth!   WIN YOUR OWN PEARLY WHITES BELOW!!!!

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WIN YOUR OWN WHITENING KIT!  VALUE $119.95

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Warm Gams: Kushyfoot Review

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Sporting Kushyfoots Shaping Tights(on left) and Fleece Lined Tights (on right)

Kushyfoot recently sent me a few pairs of tights to try out and review for all of you.  I was really excited to be introduced to a new legwear resource because I often find myself caught between spending a small fortune (on spanx tights) or being really disappointed with the quality (target tights).  Kushyfoot hits the mark for me for a few reasons.  First, I love the variety of styles they offer…everything from printed fashion to warm fleece-lined tights.  Second, the affordability…if I run them after a wear or two it isn’t the end of the world.  Third, I like the convenience…retailing at your closest drugstore or available a multitude of places online…they are easy to get your hands on.  Last but not least…they felt GREAT! Loved both the shaping tights and the fleece lined tights…although due to the crazy cold temps here in Jersey lately…the fleece lined ones are kind of my favs.  Kind of feels like I am sliding my leg into the warmest coziest softest blanket!  Seriously.  I hope you will check out Kushyfoot next time you need a pair of tights…for updates and to be in the “know” follow them on Facebook here:)  Happy Weekend!

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B Toys: Review and Highlight

One of my boys favorite bath toys is the B. Toy Splish and Splash Boat. I seriously have to beg them to get out of the bath most nights and will often find the miniature “captain” chilling in Prestons crib….sneaky little snook.  So, I was delighted when B.Toys so kindly offered to send my boys some new items to try out.  I really do adore all of their toys.  They are vibrant, affordable, encourage creativity and learning and they are socially conscious using only recycled materials for packaging.  They also encourage toys are passed down from child to child and promise the toys are built that way.  I must concur, as many of Connors B.Toys are Prestons favs and when he outgrows them we always donate to Big Brothers Big Sisters of New Jersey.

For Preston I decided to go for the Wee MD!  I originally got this Toy for Preston (15 months), thinking in the coming months he will really love all the parts and have fun learning what they do. Connor (4) almost immediately jacked this toy and has become the resident MD of the house.  If you are alive, you will have a checkup- our dogs included.  Honestly, it has been adorable watching him listen to heartbeats and scribble on the notepad..saying things like “your heart is beating really really fast” and “this is going to hurt a wittle”….the moments to cherish for sure.14545325_201311261138For Connor I decided to get the Global Glowball. I liked the idea of introducing him to a globe that was fun and exciting.  It lights up and plays music from the countries that are highlighted.  Ironically, Preston likes this more…I suppose it is the lights, music and the fact that is looks like a “baaa” which is his current word for ball and he is obsessed with them.

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I am ashamed to say we haven’t done much shopping for the boys.  The truth is they don’t need anything…and our toy room is bursting at the seams.  I spent some time weeding out the donations last week and gave away 4 bags full…and still I don’t think they need anything!  We plan to carefully select a few toys for each of them.  I know one item I really want is Ba Baa Barn for Preston.  I think it will be a great learning toy and our Little People barn has lost most of its parts unfortunately.  So, have you started your holiday shopping?  Will B.Toys be on your radar this winter?  I truly hope so!   B.Toys are available at Target and some specialty stores.  Click here to find out the closest retailer to you!

All for now….let me leave you with some candids of my boys enjoying their goodies……

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Products I Love!

1.  MyBody Brightamin C details of the product here.  Contact Kelley of SKINfinity here $150

2. Vivite Hydrating Cream available here or Contact Kelley of SKINfinity here $50

3.  Freeze 24-7 Eyecing Fatigue Fighting Eye Cream available here $115

4.  Pureology Fresh Approach Dry Shampoo available here $24

5.  Bobbi Brown Rich Chocolate Eye Palette available here $52

6.  The Good Home Company Custom Laundry Detergent here $20

Boden USA: Fall Family Style

Connor carved his first pumpkin this year…to say he was excited is an understatement!  Preston could have cared less…he is too busy walking…everywhere…Frankenstein style:)  I had honestly forgotten how endearing it is…watching them cautiously step…so proud…and looking at the world with this whole new perspective….I kind of want to freeze this moment in time. Sigh.

This is the most real photo session I’ve recorded….I think maybe because the kids were so comfortable in their Boden attire.  I simply threw down a big blanket, told the kids to play and jumped in at the end.  Done!  Not perfect…but we definitely captured some fall memories…Encourage you to do the same. Don’t plan, just hop on your lawn and take some photos!

Thank you to Boden USA for sponsoring this little shoot and providing us with essential fall goodies.  I have been a fan of the brand for Connor for quite some time but this is my first experience with their baby line and womens line.  Just as pleased…and plan to continue to shop both!  If this is your first experience with Boden…it is your LUCKY day….over 1/2 the site is 40% OFF…start shopping HERE!  If nothing on sale strikes your fancy…use code K155 for 15% off and FREE SHIPPING!  Hope you take some time to carve a pumpkin with your loved ones and HAPPY WEDNESDAY!

On Connor: Top Boden USA similar available here, Track Pants c/o Boden USA available on sale here, Hat handmade via Sarah Kiddles Shoes Morgan and Milo On Preston:   Top c/o Boden USA available on sale here Reversible Bottoms c/o Boden USA and available on sale here, Shoes/Slippers Nowali available here  On Mommy: Denim Shirt JCrew Factory similar here, Striped Top c/o Boden USA and available on sale here, Colored Denim c/o Level 99 (older style)


Pointing at everything with wonder…I really adore this age:)

Poor kid is always getting a nice strong squeeze hug:)

My model man…always striking a killer pose…I need to take notes!

Talking pumpkin carving plans…

I shared on Instagram about a week ago..Prestons first REAL steps completely on his own…and now he walks constantly…our little Frankenstein!

I asked him to say “I love you mommy” thinking maybe it would make him smile…he tried made a heart with his hands…which made ME smile:)  He is just the sweetest boy!

Hope you are smiling and have a great week!!!

Lole: ActiveWear Review

My number one mantra in regards to women living in their activewear is it takes just as much time to pull on yoga pants, a sports bra and kicks as it does to pull on skinny jeans, a t-shirt, scarf and ballet flats.  I repeatedly ask my clientele to rethink spending the day in their gym attire and changing into something comfortable and fashionable.  Of course, there are still those days that it makes zero sense to go home and change….for those days…why not merge fashion and function?  The lovely folks at Lole asked if I would be interested in reviewing a few pieces from their line and my answer was of course yes…especially when I saw the killer selection and range of products.  Everything from yoga wear to outerwear to dresses…they really have it all.

Review:  The capri legging was unbelievable.  I loved the high rise (to hold in my tummy) and the fabrication was really high quality.  The tank I could take or leave.  The fit wasn’t tight (on purpose) but it left me feeling like I wasn’t getting the support I needed on top.  The cute print (gym clothes can be blah) was fun but not sure I would purchase this style.  I cannot say enough about the tunic.  I loved how long it was and the neckline was so easy to wear.  I will wear this every day that I go to the gym….and maybe some days I don’t:)

I hope you will pop by their site to experience all that Lole has to offer.  Next on my list is this cable neckwarmer!  They also have some great tee styles on SALE here!  Hope you find time for killer workout this week and Happy Shopping!

Tunic c/o Lole available here, Leggings c/o Lole available here, Tank c/o Lole available here, Sneakers Nike (my own)


All pictures were taken at Vive Fitness in Point Pleasant New Jersey

Up Close and Personal: Bobbi Brown Makeup Review

This post is a quick extension of how to style a grapic tee posted below.  As you may remember from my Five Minute Face a while back….I don’t wear dramatic eyeshadow on the daily.  Who does really?  I suppose if we had a team of makeup artists and hair stylists swarming around us, we might have Kardashian like false eyelashes and perfectly glossed lips.  Since I don’t think that is happening anytime soon, I will stick with a little drama on the nights I am lucky enough to sneak away for adult time with friends or the hubby.

I wanted to share my experience with the above limited edition eye shadow palette in  Rich Chocolate by Bobbi Brown.  I had an instagram reader tell me the reviews were mixed on this palette and I, for the life of me, can’t understand WHY?  I adore it. It has everything a girl needs.  Dark, dramatic and shimmery for the crease of your eye, medium blend for your actual lid, and shimmery, light and airy for near your brows.  I loved the brush they supplied and it was easy to apply…1,2,3 and done!

Review:  I would buy this product again.  Love the color palette and quality.  I will be using this palette for holiday parties and events.  Available here

I complimented the darker eye with a nude and shiny lip.  Since discovering I like color on my lips, I have consistently been wearing dark pinks and reds for nights on the town.  I had forgotten how killer a nude understated lip can be!  Hello again, old friend.  I used New Baby Pink Lip Color and New Honey Lipgloss mixed together.

Review:  I loved the lipstick. It was a perfect nude easy to wear shade and went on nice and light.  I have been on the prowl for a great nude and this is IT!  Will be buying again. Available here.  The lipgloss didn’t WOW me, a little gooey for me and maybe not worth the pricetag?  In all fairness, I am not a huge lipgloss person.  If you love lipgloss and don’t mind the stickier texture, you would probably like this.  Available here.


I was gifted product but all the opinions are my own and I was not compensated for this post.

The Good Home Co: Tried and True Stain Remove Review

I originally reviewed The Good Home Co here and have continued to buy the beach scent ever since.  I loved that the product was all natural, softer on my families clothing and the scent…well you would just have to try it to understand how it fills your house with the beach.  Seriously.  Smitten with the brand, I am  now working as an ambassador and trying/reviewing their new products as they launch and also new scents…next on the horizon is cucumber!  I can’t WAIT!

Last week, they sent me their new Tried and True Stain Remover, void of all the harsh chemicals found in most stain sticks.  With a one year old and three year old in the house….stain remover is essential….It only took a moment to have something to test it with….First birthday cakesmashing photos seemed to serve up the perfect stain.  It worked!  See for yourself below.  The things I really liked about it:

1.  It was lightweight and not gooey (for lack of a better work) like most stain sticks are.
2.  It came with a spray to attach to the bottle, so it was really easy to use and not messy.
3.  It has a light fresh scent that didn’t linger.

If you are interested in giving it a try…never a better time as my readers are being offered a great discount!
 
CODE CARLY25 FOR 25% OFF THE STAIN REMOVER! 

BOTH pairs…clean as a whistle!

Working Girl Chic: Brenthaven Giveaway!

As you know, I don’t have a dress code of any kind in my profession.  Blazers and knee length skirts are not a requirement on the daily but that doesn’t mean I don’t love them.  I usually pair my blazers with denim and skirts with easy blouses but at my Fedali Photoshoot, I decided to highlight what I would wear if I had an office to report to.  The standout?  This amazing Brenthaven Messenger Bag. Classic, timeless, impeccably made…what is not to love?  I really love the unisex feel…and although I picked it out for myself…my husband did ask if it was a gift for him!  Ha!  Nope….it is a gift for one of YOU!  I know how hard it is to be a working woman…and mom…and it’s back to school time….so I decided to gift this bag to one of you!  Entry details below.  Hope you find some outfit inspiration and GOOD LUCK!

Blazer:  via Piperlime, Red Shirt: Daniel Rain, Skirt: Joseph Ribkoff, Shoes: Christian Louboutin, Collins Messenger Bag:  c/o Brenthaven

This shirt is getting a workout ladies.  It is the most beautiful shade of red and seems to pair perfectly under blazers/jackets but works just as well as a stand alone.  It can be yours.  Shirt: Daniel Rain (available through Box Service) $68- I reordered again and have all sizes S-L Small SOLD OUT


THE GIVEAWAY!!!


TO ENTER:  GIVEAWAY IS CLOSED!

1.  Please leave a comment below sharing why you NEED this amazing workbag in your life including your email address to be contacted should you win.

Completely optional but would love for you to follow along with me so I can continue to bring you GREAT giveaways!  TSF on FacebookTSF on Instagram or TSF on Pinterest!

Be sure to follow along with Brenthaven on Facebook or Twitter!

Winner will be chosen via Random.org on 9/3/13.  Only open to US Residents.

All photos by Fedali Portriat Photography

Random Favorite Things

I try to bring these lists to you every so often when I start using new products and adore them.  So below are some new discoveries that I am loving.  Although they are not fashion related, I hope you enjoy the round up and Happy Shopping!!

 I reviewed Beach Days from The Good Home Co. a while back and have been hooked ever since.  The products are all natural, better for your skin and clothing and smell so good it is almost unbelievable.  I recently added the dryer sheets to my routine.  I know the items are a little more expensive than your grocery store detergents, but it is worth it to keep my families skin and clothing looking and feeling better:) 

USE CODE CARLY25 NOW THROUGH 9/5/13 FOR 25% OFF YOUR ENTIRE PURCHASE!

 If you follow on Instagram you saw my hairstyle and shout out to this Redken product on Saturday night.  I reached out to my hairstylist to ask her if there was a product that would keep my hair manageable and frizz free and she recommended this.  I have to say…never in the summer months has my hair remained styled throughout the entire evening.  I am a believer and will continue to use this product!  Love!

I recently started reading all my labels…things that I thought were “organic” or “made in the USA” are often not…also starting paying attention to GMO’s.  We don’t drink juice boxes all the time but it is unrealistic to think I won’t buy them at all.  No product is perfect but after reading tons of juice box labels I have decided this is the best on the market.  My family prefers the grape to any of the other flavors.  Do you know of anything better?  I would love to hear about it.

A few months ago I shared my c-section scar care routine…a mix of Maderma and Bio Oil.  I still love those products- specifically Bio Oil (and use it for elbows and knees that are dry) but have something I love even more.  I have been using Novo Scar MD for about a month.  The results are not insanely dramatic, but I do notice my scar diminishing more than it was with Maderma.  I just ordered a new bottle of the cream here and plan to continue using it in the coming months.  It is a little pricier than Maderma (not much though) but the bottle is three times the size and lasts for an entire month.  I am not expecting miracles, but would love to get my scar to a place that I can feel really good about.  I will keep you posted!

Skincare Routine: Q & A with Skinfinity

Kelley has been one of my closest friends for years…she has been featured on the blog before here when I styled her for her bridal shower. Kelley is actually an intrical part of how I started my box service.  Long story how it all unfolded but she is my first and favorite box client and always will be:)

She is also a talented aesthetician who co-owns a skincare company Skinfinity. She has successfully zapped away my underarm hair through laser hair removal…the gift that keeps on giving right there ladies…and is helping DC area women look and feel great about their skin…just read her testimonials here.  About five years ago, when I turned 28 and started panicking about the fact that I had done nothing in regards to skincare, I asked for her advice.  She turned me onto a product called Vivite and I have never looked back…only taking breaks from it while pregnant with my boys.  I will be sharing my daily routine and favorite products but first I made Kelley answer some questions I was personally curious about.

Q:  Is it important to use products from ONE skincare line or is it ok to mix and match with different products that work best for you?

A:  I personally do not believe that in order to get results you must use all the products from the same line.  Not every product in one skincare line will agree with my skin all the time.  I find this to be true with my patients as well.  Do you use all the same products from one makeup line? No, we have a favorite lip liner that is suited with our favorite lip stick and lets not forget about mascara – how often do we search high and low for the PERFECT mascara?!  The object in skincare is to get the best and most effective result and that is what I strive for as an aesthetician. Different professionals in the industry might lead you to believe that you must use all the products from a particular line to get the results but it is simply not true!  Not only is it perfectly fine to mix and match products form different lines but sometimes it is necessary if you want to achieve the best results possible.
Q:  If you had to recommend one anti-aging product to a thirty-something, what would it by and why?

A:  The obvious answer would be Sun Block.  If you aren’t currently using it, run out and buy some…now!  This is essential in the anti-aging aspect since age spots, fine lines and wrinkles are caused by the sun.  I recommend UVA, UVB SPF15-50 and use it daily. The next best product for a thirty-something would be Vitamin C Serum.  Vitamin C stimulates collagen, is a powerful antioxidant, brightens and fights free radicals.  Free radicals are the pollutions in the air that cause damage to the skin and enhance the aging process. I use this daily and recommend it to all my patients.
Do you have questions YOU need answered?  If you live in the greater Washington DC area, Kelley is YOUR girl.  Skinfinity provides facial beautification from chemical peels to botox…depending on your needs and wants.  So visit the Skinfinity site to learn more or like their Facebook Page to stay current on tips, tricks and products. Apparently I need to reach out to Kelley to get Vitamin C Serum…I am not currently using it..and if she swears by it…then so do I!   Her email: Kelley@skinfinityllc.com

MY SKINCARE ROUTINE:

In the Morning:
Step 1:  I wash my face in the shower by lathering “Neutrogena Naturals Purifying Facial Cleanser” on my face and using my Clarasonic to get at the dirt and buildup.
 *important to mention that I feel like my face was never really clean until I started using the Clarasonic. I am obsessed with it and use it everyday.

Step 2: I try to apply my products pretty quickly after my shower so my pores are open and soak everything in.  I start with “Vivite Daily Antioxidant Facial Serum” and then apply “Vivite Hydrating Cream” and then I apply “Vivite Revitalizing Eye Cream” and lastly for some extra moisture (I have dry skin) I apply “Neurtogena Naturals Multi Vitamin Nourishing Moisturizer”.

Most days, I then move on to my 5 Minute Face which contains SPF in my foundation.  If I am not wearing makeup or sitting at the pool all day, I use the same SPF as the boys, Mustela’s SPF 50- yes, that is right, 50!!!  I don’t mess around.

In the Evening:
Step 1:  I wash my face with “Neutrogena Naturals Purifying Facial Cleanser”.

Step 1A:  Every OTHER night I use the “Vivite Exfoliating Facial Cleanser”.  It can be drying at first, so you might want to use once or twice a week in the beginning and gradually build up.  I love this scrub.

Step 2:  I then generously apply “Vivite Night Renewal Facial Creme” which can sting a little in the beginning as your face gets used to it.  Now that I have used it for quite some time, it feels like regular lotion.  I finish off with another dose of “Vivite Revitalizing Eye Cream” and I am done!

I know it sounds like a lot but honestly it takes a few minutes and since starting this “process” I have noticed a difference in my skin.  As far as being pricey, I truly feel my face is worth the investment.  I also find that these products last for at least two to three months (longer than the inexpensive brands I have tried) so all said and done, it is not that much more. I have less breakouts, smoother skin, I am relatively wrinkle free and best of all…I know I am protecting my skin from the aging process.  What is YOUR skincare routine?  What are you doing to fight the aging process?  Any products you can’t live without…do share!!!

Happy Weekend!

A Few of Our Favorite Things!

PAN: THE FEARLESS BERIBOLT GIVEAWAY!!!!

A fan of the blog emailed me a few weeks back and wanted to gift a new app that she had created to Connor called Pan: The Fearless Beribolt about a Beribolt called Pandora (Pan for short) who is on a search to find her family.  To say Connor enjoys it would be the understatement of the century.  He LOVES Pan and is entranced traveling and exploring with Pan and friends.  There is definite learning, hand eye coordination and my personal favorite…use of his ever expanding imagination! Everyday when we get home from the pool (while I am getting dinner ready) Connor asks for Pan.  Honestly it is a nice diversion from Thomas the Train and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.  Intrigued for your little ones?  Well lucky for you….the lovely team at PAN is gifting the app to one of you!!!!

TO WIN!  So easy….  GIVEAWAY CLOSED!

1.  Like Pan on Facebook HERE

2.  Leave a comment that you have done the above and your email address so I can contact you if you win!

Winner will be chosen Monday July 1st and is open to US residents only.

Some other Favorite Things……

Moroccan Argan Oil

I posted this to Instagram a few weeks ago and still LOVE IT!  This Moroccan Argan Oil Shampoo and Conditioner is affordable, smells delicious and I really love the way my hair feels.  It seems to style really nicely and although I haven’t had my hair cut in eons, I don’t have major split ends.  Coincidence?


MIRASSOU

I have an occasional glass of wine during the week and my husband and I are really enjoying this particular Pinot Noir from California.  At under 12 dollars a bottle it is the perfect price point.  Some details about the wine here.


SEQUIN BLAZER

I posted this sequin blazer to my Instagram and everyone seemed to love it.  I got it on super sale here.  I know it is totally not in season, but I can’t wait to slide it on come September.


HAPPY SHOPPING!

Holy Guacamole!

Ingredients:  
3 Avocados
1 Onion
Tabasco
Cilantro
Salt and Pepper
1 Lemon (or lemonjuice)
Salsa (mild)
Mayonnaise

Peel avocados and mash with your fork on a plate.  Aside from mashing first, I find that the order you add the remaining ingredients doesn’t really matter much so I will list it as I would do it, but you don’t need to stick to it.  Cut an onion in half, finely chop half the onion and add (be sure to really chop the onion..nothing worse than big onion chunks) to plate on top of mashed avocado.  Slice lemon and squeeze all juice from entire lemon (if you are using pre-bought lemon juice add about a teaspoon full).  Add a tablespoon of mild salsa.  Add a tablespoon of mayonnaise.  Add 1 teaspoon of finely chopped fresh cilantro (or you can use dried cilantro too).  Add 1/4 teaspoon of Tabasco (you can leave this out if you don’t like a little kick).  Now just mix it all in really well and salt and pepper to taste.  I usually add a little UNDER 1/4 teaspoon of both, but maybe start with less and then add in more if needed.

* You can totally add less onion if you want- my husband likes less so when I make it for our family I only add about 1/4  the onion but for parties I add 1/2.
* I use mild salsa because we don’t like TOO much kick, but you can totally use medium or hot.
* I add Tabasco but this is also optional and sometimes I leave it out when I know Connor will be eating it.

ENJOY!!!!!

My Poolside Must Haves

Please do not assume that because I am putting myself out there in a bikini on the blog, that I am completely secure with how I look in one.   I am exactly nine months out from my second baby boy and although my pre baby clothing fits, my body is not exactly where I want it to be…not sure it ever will be and hey….I am ok with it.  My new motto…”two kids and I don’t care”….Who is with me?  Hope you find some swim style inspiration and have a great weekend:)

CHIC COVERUP
I have sold this Echo cover up time and time again through my Box Service. I am not sure what took me so long to try one for myself but when this bright orange hue arrived, I had to scoop one up for myself.  Much like I believe you shouldn’t be in your yoga pants on the daily, I also believe ratty oversized fraternity shirts are not sufficient bathing suit covers. Every women needs a great pool/beach coverup that is chic and flattering.  The one I am wearing is available here in pink and turquoise or in ombre here all for under fifty dollars!

HAIR AND FACE
FACE:  I started using Mustela products when Preston was born.  I like that it is all natural and free of all the bad stuff.  Naturally I purchased their sunscreen for the boys this summer and am using it for myself too.  I don’t wear much sunscreen on my body…but my face….whole different story.  I use 50 SPF on my face…daily….mama don’t mess around.  What is the point in all the expensive lotions, potions and wrinkle creams if I don’t protect my face from the sun?  A good strong sunscreen for your face is essential.
HAIR:  If you follow on Instagram you saw my post of the Organix Argan Oil shampoo and conditioner I am currently using.  I love it!  When I saw they also had a sea salt spray for your hair it was a no-brainer.  I spritz my hair with this throughout the day, in and out of the pool or ocean for beautiful sexy undone hair.  I like to wear my hair down so that some natural highlights can kick in and give me that impossible to bottle sunkissed hair!

SWIMSUIT
It won’t be much of a pool or beach day if you don’t have a great swimsuit that you feel confident in.  I
had a serious inner battle about getting a one piece or a bikini this year.  Turns out (after trying for months) that I look horrible in a one piece due to my long torso (I still might try this one).  Even with my not so taut tummy, I feel more confident in a two piece…go figure!  I spied this nautical number at Target by the brand Mossimo available here.  The pieces are sold separately so I am able to mix and match sizing and total bonus…the top is reversible…one side is solid navy and the other is striped…two suits in one…Yes please!!!

BODY
I often don’t believe the hype around these type of products but my friend from highschool is involved with the brand It Works! and wanted to send me a few of their body wraps.  I am game to try anything once so I took a break from the sun for an hour yesterday and wore it around my waistline.  Low and behold, I lost a little over an inch!  Crazy, right?  I feel pretty damn svelte too…and how we feel is half the battle, no?  Basically you wear the Ultimate Body Applicator for 45 minutes (on any body part you want to minimize) and massage in the gel after taking it off.  It works for 72 hours after applied.  Many clients use them weekly as a body slimmer you apply instead of wearing (think in lieu of Spanx).  Personally, I am not sure I would use this consistently year round, but I could definitely invest in it for a few months during the summer to keep me feeling confident in a bathing suit.  What I am even more intrigued about is some of the other products like their stretch mark and scar moisturizing cream.  I am always on the prowl for a great lotion with these healing properties. They also have a detox line that I want to try. For the product featured below a box of 4 (month supply) is $99 OR if you become a loyal customer it is $59.  If you are interested in finding out more information please visit Amy’s site or contact her via email Amy.wrapitup@gmail.com.  Some shots of my results below.

On top is the before at 32 inches and on the bottom is the after at 31 inches:)  Pretty cool, right?

* I was given product for review but all opinions are my own.

Beauty and SkinCare: Products I Love

I am reviewing the Eden Allure Argan Oil and Beauty Bars. The Beauty Bars are great.  They smell delicious and lather really nice.  That said, I am more of a “body wash” kind of girl so I am not sure I would order those again.  I know my sister is the total opposite (hates body wash and loofah) and I would definitely recommend the soaps for her.  The oil however is something I will definitely order again.  I paid special attention to elbows, knees and feet and found this oil to mix in great with my body lotion.  Not overly greasy and zero scent made it perfect for everyday use.  Sounds silly but I loved that it was in a spray bottle (many oils are not) making it really easy to use. Nutshell, I highly recommend the oil.  Available for purchase here.

* I was given product for review but not paid for this mention and all opinions are my own.

With all the anti aging products for our skin, most of us forget our hair.  At least I do did.  I am getting really into haircare as I creep closer to my mid thirties.  If I plan to have long hair in my adult life, it needs to be as healthy and beautiful as it can be.  I have wanted to try Wen by Chaz Dean ever since a pregnancy insomnia infomercial.  A while back I was gifted this styling product created and sold at a local Philadelphia salon, Giovanni & Pileggi.  Not formerly someone who uses “styling products” I was skeptical but the “anti aging” component had me intrigued, so I starting spritzing my hair with it before blowdrying.  I love it.  Seriously, I love it.  It has UV protection and a killer scent and just seems to make my hair a bit shinier for lack of a better description.  I am officially hooked.  Available for purchase here.

*I was gifted product but no review was promised.  All opinions are my own.  

I bought this on a whim at my local CVS.  I have been looking for a new body wash and since I love the Burts Bees products for the kids, I figured it was worth a shot.  Fabulously fresh is right!  The addition of peppermint oil smells divine but most importantly invigorates me and helps me start my day.  This is quickly falling in “favorite product of all time” category.  You need to try this.  Available here.

Like every thirty-something, I have been noticing deepening lines around my mouth and eyes for a couple years. I use a night cream by Vivite, daily serum from Algenist (review here) but really wanted an effective but inexpensive serum that I could heavily apply on those problem areas at night.  I use Neutrogena facewash and daytime lotion, so I thought I would give it a try.  It has been about 10 days and I have to say I am really pleased.  The first 3/4 nights there was some flaking skin (it says that is normal)but I think I really do see it working!  I think it cost me about $20 and is totally worth the price.  Some of my more expensive lotions and potions are used sparingly (because of the price) so it is nice to see something working that is affordable.  I will keep you posted but I think this is a definite TRY!  Available .