Posted on January 8, 2015
Skincare overseas, for example Korea and Japan, is serious business. It is a daily essential that involves many, many steps and is quite exhaustive. Yet, in the US, we are still trying to figure out what the wonder is behind Korean skincare. Beauty blogger Coco Park recently discovered Korean beauty care in her Korean-American boyfriends parents bathroom, and decided to check it out for herself. She went from using only a few products a day…to 17. On her blog, she says that she saw an immense difference in just three weeks, and her red spots and pores have essentially disappeared.
When you think about it, the invasion of Korean beauty products started a while ago. More specifically, in 2011 when companies started introducing the originally based Korean BB cream. BB cream is said to be an all in one product that will take care of the skin. Soon, American companies started producing their own versions, and we have BB creams, CC creams, and so on. As it turns out, this was just the Americanized version of Korean skincare because in the US, we like to keep things simple. In reality, we should also be scrubbing, moisturizing, cleansing, and treating.
Now that the beauty obsessed in the US are starting to reap the benefits of foreign beauty traditions, other interesting new treatments are starting to pop up. Two weeks ago, I got my monthly facial. I was surprised in my sleepy state of mind when something ice cold rolled around my face…under my eyes, down my nose, on my neck…it never seemed to stop. While reading Refinery29 this morning, I discovered that it was an ice roller. Essentially, this is a fancy substitute for throwing some spoons in the freezer. The ice roller can swiftly clean up the look of tired eyes, redness, puffiness, and minor bruising. My first question is…where do I get my hands on one?
For more information on best Korean beauty products, I would check out:
Posted on December 19, 2014
Category: Beauty, Chicago, Chicago Fashion, College Fashion, Fashion, Inspiration, Uncategorized Tagged: Beauty, best beauty products, blog, Blogger, chicago blog, chicago fashion blog, fashion, fashion blog, Gift Guide, gifts for beauty, Holiday gifts, Rodin Body Oil, The Little Black Box, Tom Ford
Posted on December 12, 2014
No matter what we seem to do, dark circles never seem to go away. We have all had the moment of looking in the mirror, and thinking “Holy crap…I look so tired.” One of the problems with having dark circles as a problem area, is that the skin is thinnest in the eye area and therefore harder to manipulate back to normal. The two largest problems with the eye area, are puffiness, and dark circles.
Puffy eyes can be caused by a whole host of things, some large, some small: a nasty sinus infection, crying your eyes out before bed, or simply eating a salty lunch. One of the best things you can do, is drink a lot of water throughout the day to flush out some of the build up.
Sleeping on your side of stomach can cause build up around the eyes. If you wake up with chronically puffy eyes, sleeping on your back may be a quick fix to perfect peepers.
Try not to rub your eyes throughout the day, which can cause the thin skin around the eyes to become inflamed and irritated. This breaks tiny blood vessels around the eye and causes discoloration.
-Stick two spoons in the freezer. After a solid ten minutes, take them out and slather them in eye cream. Apply under eyes and watch them instantly de-puff.
-A cooling eye mask works just as well.
-Try a targeted eye mask for instant results. After applying eye pads, under eyes are left brighter, smoother, and perkier in minutes. The hydrating pads help to restore water where there may be done, causing puffiness. Plankton extract in these pads has an instant tightening effect.
-If you are a fan of salty meals, try snacking on bananas to balance out the affects of the sodium.
While dark circles are usually attributed to a late night, they can be causes by much more, and sometimes hereditary. As we get older, dark circles are inevitable no matter how much sleep we get: the skin thins around our eyes, therefore showing more of the discoloration underneath. The elasticity in our eye area begins to lose mass, and shows the outline of the bone underneath, making it look hollow and dark.
Dark circles can take on make different tones, but one of the most common is blue. This is caused from blood pooling around the eyes, and will be most visible in the morning but become less perceptible throughout the day. Brown circles can also be a sign of this. Experts recommend using a soy or citrus bases brightening eye cream to combat this over a few weeks.
“You can fight the good fight on a daily basis by applying night cream. Products with hyaluronic acid will plump the area, hydrating the skin and pushing it up and away from the blood, whereas those containing retinoic acid will thicken the skin to conceal the darkness.” [The Stylelist.]
-Make up. Choose a concealer that matches your skin tone. Make up artists will tell you to go a few shades lighter, but most of the time, it is not a good look.
-Try using a eye cream with caffeine, which will tighten and lift the eye area. quickly.
-A cold compress or cold spoons will always provide a quick fix.
1. Prepare the skin with eye cream. This will bring moisture to the skin and keep it plump, therefore making it a tad bit easier to cover up the veins.
2. Apply your concealer. Choose a concealer with a yellowish undertone to counteract the blueish tinge around the eyes. Dot concealer around the eye area with a small make up brush.
3. Dab concealer. Dab your concealer to blend opposed to brushing it on. This helps to avoid further irritating the gentle skin around the eyes.
4. Apply a powder. Applying a powder to the concealer helps to set it into place. This will help hold the concealer from slipping into wrinkles or fine lines, and prevent shininess throughout the day.
Posted on December 8, 2014
Rachel Zoe may be small in size, but she has no shortage of style to go around. This past Wednesday, Rachel Zoe and Robin Moraetes, co-founders of DreamDry, took the windy city by storm for the opening of their latest location in Lincoln Park. The opening party was just as chic as you would think a Rachel Zoe hosted soiree would be: Moët & Chandon kept the bubbly flowing while Vosges Haut-Chocolat served light, delicious bites. Zoe wore a gorgeous black jumpsuit, and large gold Chanel earrings.
The first feature I noticed at DreamDry was the crazy zig zag floor. The whole space is decorated in black and white, and reminds me of classic glamor. Zoe and Moraetes recently talked to Suntimes Splash, and explained who DreamDry will serve: “We wanted to come up with a solution for the busy professional, the busy mom, to have a more upscale, affordable luxury experience. DreamDry really is a destination.” [Suntimes Splash]
DreamDry does not just offer a blowout, but a full experience. I had the pleasure to experience a DreamDry blowout last week, and was pleasantly surprised at the difference between DreamDry and other blowout salons I have tried. As an avid blowout bar junkie, I appreciate the small things. My stylist immediately handed me an Ipad fully loaded with the different hairstyles available. I settled on the “Stevie,” a bouncy blowout with loose curls. My stylist gave me a phenomenal scalp massage while washing my hair, and then gave me a mini Ipad stacked with all the latest magazines to keep me occupied during my appointment.
I left with shiny, voluminous hair that lasted for three days after my blowout. My verdict? I would go back in a heart beat.
Blowouts and braids start at $40.00, but with the impeccable service and long lasting effects, it’s well worth it.
Posted on November 25, 2014
They say the eyes are the windows to the soul, so why not make sure you take care of your lashes too? False lashes seem daunting, but with the right tips and tricks, are shockingly easy and will have you looking doe eyed in five minutes flat. A few lashes placed on the outer corner of your lids will give impression of wide eyes.
Making lashes look natural is key, so go small strips or stick to individual falsies. When using strips, I recommend this helpful tutorial from Beautylish.
Need a little more guidance? Here are our four steps to getting the perfect fringe:
Curl: Curl your lashes before applying your fake lashes or mascara.
Apply Mascara: Choose a lengthening formula so your natural lashes blend in with your falsies. Apply one to two coats, and keep it thin. This prevents clumping and will help your false lashes blend in. For added perfection, use a small brow comb to go through your lases before applying falsies.
Line: Smudge a charcoal black liner thinly along lids. This way, in case there is a gap between your fake lashes and your natural lash line, the smudges liner will hide it.
Posted on October 29, 2014
What is it:
A gentle, light orange, slightly grainy, but effective cleanser.
What it does:
Scrubs away make-up, skin impurities, and dead skin.
Why I love it:
Clarins gentle, spa-fresh facial exfoliator rids skin of make-up, embedded impurities and dead surface cells in one time-saving step. After use, my skin was left feeling clean, fresh, and polished. Orange extract softens, refreshes and renews radiance. The cleanser smells amazing, so it is never a “chore” to wash my face in the morning and at night. Moringa Seed extract purifies and refines while preserving skin’s natural moisture balance. Gentle Silica Microbeads give clogged pores a breather. While some exfoliants can be too harsh for everyday use, this Clarins cleanser has just the right amount of grit. I have been using this cleanser for about three weeks, every morning and night, and have noticed that my skin is much smoother.
Posted on October 21, 2014
When I was first sent this little white pot with YSL branded on the front, I was skeptical. A fashion house suddenly produces beauty products…since when? Little did I know what I was in for.
What is it:
A thick, creamy cream for the eye area.
What it does:
Reduces appearance of dark circles and puffiness.
Why I love it:
This eggshell colored cream is incredibly thick, and seeps into skin as soon as it makes contact. The results are amazing. This is YSL’s newest beauty product, and I hope we see more from this line. The silky texture glides onto your eye area with a sensation of comfort and nourishment while reducing the appearance of dark circles and puffiness. The area surrounding my eyes has looked less dull, and my under-eye puffiness has disappeared completely. Unlike a face mask or treatment, this cream requires zero effort, making it perfect for a quick morning and night beauty routine. I would not consider many beauty products miracles, but this is definitely a miracle in a jar.
YSL beauty, $170.00 for 1.4oz.
Posted on August 27, 2014
Shannon O’Brien’s work has been featured in CS Magazine, Refinery 29, and national ad campaigns, but that’s just the start. This isn’t why O’Brien’s clients rave about her, it all boils down to her incredibly refined work and relationships with everyone she comes across. Beauty can get complicated, and that’s why we asked Shannon to let us in on her favorite hush-hush beauty secrets & products. Now you can look like a glam goddess every day, all year long.
This is so crucial if you love a strong brow. Not only does it not travel or smudge, but it is waterproof WATERPROOF! I love it particularly because it makes my brows a bit more buxom when they’re feeling a too skinny. I play with my brow color a lot so I like to mix 2 or three to get the perfect shade.
This water based foundation is gorgeous, natural, and build-able. It has a natural hydrated finis and I love to mix it with a beauty balm in the summer to sheer it out. This is also a photo-friendly foundation. Illamasqua also sells it with a “skin enhancer” color that when mixed in can highlight, contour, brighten, or bronze depending on the color you choose. A++++++
I just started using this combo and LOVE it. I typically only wash my hair once a week so it’s important that the products I use hydrate my hair without weighing it down. I even work about a quarter size of the conditioner into my hair after my shower to leave in for extra moisture. I just like how soft and shiny it leaves my hair. I am also a sucker for the simple packaging.
This is my all time favorite body lotion. It leaves my skin buttery with a glow even the day after I use it. It has a very subtle cocoa butter scent that makes me feel like I’m on vacation without being overpowering. I keep it in my kit as well to knock out dry knees and an elbows on my models. I feel like this stuff is magic. My skin never feels better than when I use it and it’s a drugstore staple!
5. SK-II Mask
This is the perfect cure for tired skin. 10 minutes in one of these babies and your skin is plump, radiant and super hydrated. I like to use these the night before a big event to make sure my skin looks it’s best. It is also a kit must have for VIP clients. You look like Hannibal Lecter while using them, but I swear the pay off is worth it.
Posted on August 21, 2014
Summer. So amazing for our souls, but so bad for our skin. Summer weather means dirt and grime building up in our pores, thus producing tons of pesky blackheads. A solid routine can help put an end to these little guys, for good.
1. Scrub. every. damn. day. Every morning, whether it be in or out of the shower, make sure to use an exfoliating face wash to open up your pores. Sebum, a sticky oil that causes blackheads, can get stuck in your pores and create a deeper issue later on. Squash it before it starts.
Our Pick: Burt’s Bees Peach & Willow Bark scrub; formulated with willow bark extract, this facial scrub deep cleans pores and gently exfoliates to remove dead skin cells as finely ground peach stone polishes for a smooth complexion. This 100% natural scrub removes dirt and excess oil, leaving you with a refreshingly clean feel and naturally healthy-looking skin.
2. Tone. The goal when using a toner, is to tighten your pores. Focus on spots where excess grease and oil build up, like your t-zone, forehead, and nose. If you have oily skin, this step is especially important for you. A toner can help keep shiny skin at bay, leading to a matte complexion. Stay away from dry areas, because toner will dry them out further and cause flaky patches.
Our Pick: Bliss Steep Clean Mattifying Toner Pads; I have been a long time user of Bliss products, and my skin thrives when using anything from the world class spa’s Steep Clean collection. These are perfect for oily and combination skin to reduce mid-day shine without leaving your cheeks peeling or parched. With salicylic acid, smartsponge technology (self activating oil-control spheres), and dead cell digesting enzymes, these are a no brainer.
3. Two words: soft skin. After scrubbing and toning, you want to rehydrate your parched face with a non-oily moisturizer. Choose one with SPF to make sure your face is always protected.
Our Pick: Simple Vital Vitamin Day Cream, SPF 15; This cream smooths and moisturizes in a flash. Listen to Allure: “this gentle moisturizer coddles even very sensitive and occasionally inflamed skin with natural, nonirritating ingredients. ”
4. Weekly mini facial. Pick a morning or night once a week, preferably after you get out of the shower to prevent dirt on skin, and really take the time to treat your skin. This may seem like a lot of effort, but this could be the difference between major blackhead drama, or clear skin. I use three different masks every Thursday morning and then follow it up with a heavy moisturizer. I’ve found that since I started this routine, my skin has a better tone, less blackheads, and I rarely have breakouts.
Our Picks, In Order Of Use:
a. Neutrogena Clear Pore Cleanser/Mask: This dermatologist-tested formula has the acne-fighting power of Benzoyl Peroxide to kill bacteria and treat existing breakouts. Cooling intensity builds as it penetrates deep into pores.
b. Bliss Steep Clean Pore Purifying Mask: This pore plunging, clog clearing mask will transform skin into a scene of extremely clean when used weekly for 15 minutes. Intensive exfoliation, oil elimination, and deep pore purging are a perfect for all (but especially pimple prone) skin types.
c. Algenist Algae Brightening Mask: This will always be my go to product. No other product has given me results like this algae mask. Pricey, but worth every penny. The mask gently exfoliates with real leaves of sea kelp and delivers powerful antioxidant protection in a beautiful, freshly scented blue-green algae silt base. Its expert formulation is designed to visibly brighten, smooth, and hydrate while pampering your skin. If this is ever discontinued, I will cry.
Posted on August 15, 2014