Saturday, July 24, 2010

BREAKING NEWS! " Safe Cosmetics Act of 2010 (H.R.5786)"

My grandmother has, on her nightstand, a dusting powder from a prestigious cosmetics company purchased from a second-hand store that dates back to the early 1950's. I first remember seeing it when I was around 9 or 10 years old. I'm now 29. She still has it.

The container is withered and beat up, the accompanying puff is frayed, but the loose powder is still fresh looking with no signs of mildew or dirt accumulating. The scent is very distinct and conjures an olfactory response that I will never forget since first getting a whiff over 18 years ago. Did I mention it's the same box?!

In decades past, cosmetics, like cars, were made very differently. The main difference being that they were constructed to last a very long time. But, with the advent of new technologies and the restrictions on certain ingredients, most cosmetic products have lowered shelf lives and less staying power. Again, just like cars.

The difference between the two is that most "improvements" on cosmetics were made by removing elements in their composition that cause a potential detriment to the consumer. Various ingredients in cosmetics would range from Arsenic (drying agent) and Lead (used to cleanse away blemishes and "brighten complexion") to Formaldehyde (preservative).

Like "smoky eyes"? Ancient Egyptians created the trend by rimming their eyes with Kohl, a mixture of soot, fatty matter and some form of metal like Lead or Manganese. Which is a prime element in the forging of "Stainless Steel".

For the benefit of humans, most ingredients, once linked to detrimental disorders like dementia, various neurosis and all around poor health, have been deleted from modern formulations. Or, at the very least, been heavily restricted.

Unlike some other consumer products, cosmetics are NOT regulated by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) in terms of full disclosure on ingredients, approval of product labeling and various forms of application. Mostly due to the volume of products produced, the FDA simply doesn't have the resources to tackle the task. As a result, any and ALL cosmetics have no right to label their products "FDA Approved". Even if they adhere to the policies dictated by the Voluntary Cosmetics Registration Program (VCRP).

But even some cosmetics don't have to adhere to these regulations either. For instance, if they are "cosmetic products for professional use only, such as products used in beauty salons, spas, or skin care clinics" or "to hotel samples or free gifts or cosmetic products you make in your home to sell to your friends".

The most that cosmetics are required to disclose as of now refers mostly to labeling practices. On the box, the company cannot make a claim that it treats or cures any kind of ailment or disease. This doesn't apply to what a salesperson may claim while at the makeup counter. The ingredients listing and other markings on packaging must also be written in English if sold in the United States and it's territories where English is the primary language spoken. Lucky Puerto Rico, I guess?

If, by chance, there is some kind of obvious and potential hazard to the consumer, it must also be on the label in a conspicuous manner and in English or some universally recognizable symbol. For example, if the product is flammable (hairspray, atomizers, perfume or alcohol based cleansers).

But, again, these are all practices that are in accordance with VOLUNTARY participation. If there is a product being marketed that does not adhere to the above rules, it's unfortunately not likely to be taken off the market until there is a formal inquiry. And those only happen after someone has been affected. Which, until now, was an issue the FDA has had no means to regulate during manufacturing or commercialization.

With the passing of the proposed bill, there will be wider attention paid to the production and formulation of any and all cosmetic ingredients with the purpose of spotting out all potential hazards. "Words on labels like 'natural', 'safe' and 'pure' have no definition in law and no relationship to the hazard inside the packaging".
So far, the FDA has spotted and removed 9 ingredients commonly used in cosmetics... in a little over 70 years. If this bill should pass, I imagine we may see a lot more items being recalled in the years to come since it will call for a massive amount of transparency.

So, like my grandmother, I may have to hang on to a few of my favorite items pretty tightly. It's not likely they'll be around for much longer.

Product Review; "Urban Decay Stardust Eyeshadow"

Fairy Princess.

That's the first thing that comes to mind; "Fairy Princess".

These eyeshadows are NUTS when it comes to shimmer. We're talking full-on crazy-mad seizure-inducing reflective sparkle in one application.

To be honest, the first thing I noticed wasn't even the product itself, it was the packaging. It's a rounded square tin of eyeshadow surrounded by a floating frame of rubber-textured plastic with no tab for opening the lid. Instead, you squeeze the frame and the clear lid, with logo printed in black, pops open to reveal a cascade of light particles dancing from all views.

The color choice is expansive to include charcoal tones, pinks, purples and greens which all look beautiful in the package when contrasted against the tiniest particles of silver glitter. I would have liked to have seen, maybe, a coordinating tone of glitter to accompany each individual shade (eg; pink shadow with pink glitter), but I do like the effect of the contrast. Plus, the silver tends to bounce a bit of the color back and it all looks pretty sparkle-y regardless.

The packaging is really interesting and light-weight, the product goes on skin very smoothly and, surprisingly, there isn't much fall-out when applied. No huge chunks of glitter that fall and drop over the cheeks leaving sparkle in every pore.

However, not much color.

The image above is 5 different colors applied with a different fingertip on my right hand to the back of my left hand (54, Atmosphere, Diamond Dog, Griffith and Moon Spoon). Each is entirely different from the last and leaves only the faintest of color in the wake of sparkle. If you were using something as a base like concealer or even Cream Colour Base you'd get a much more intense color payoff. But, if you are doing that, you're really just getting the base color coming through anyway. So, you'd only be using the Stardust Eyeshadow for it's shimmer quality.

Which isn't so bad, really.

Urban Decay Stardust Eyeshadow
; $20

Friday, July 23, 2010

Religious makeup?

I haven't that much information on the matter of religion or religious procedure and only a mild grasping of which faiths dictate which behaviors. But I do know makeup.

For hundreds of years, mineral makeup has been on the market ranging in products from skincare to color enhancers. In my own opinion, all makeup is "mineral makeup". All cosmetic products are composed of the same minerals and pigments found in "mineral makeup" but are then coagulated, fixed, meshed or blended with other elements like waxes, preservatives, binding agents or other fillers in order to create a specific use or to stretch the lifespan of the product. But if you remove all the hullabaloo, you're left with the most important part; minerals.

Other cosmetic lines that boast a "mineral" product will use this information to their benefit calling all the other elements unhealthy or unsafe. But when I was reading by the former Allure Beauty Director Victoria Kirby (WHUSSAP VICTORIA?!) I came upon a post about a mineral makeup line that would preserve a religious concern as well.

According to Samina Pure Makeup it is within the Muslim faith to be overly concerned with the use of alcohol and animal products. In the sense that you shouldn't. At all. In this sense, you would maintain a level of purity in accordance with the Halal doctrine that is specific about what products can be produced and in what fashion. Something similar to "Kosher" products and foods in the Jewish faith. In their own words;

"Halal is a purity assurance which complies to very strict guide lines, ensuring all ingredients tracing right back to their raw sources and production procedures are all checked and verified as free from animal and alcohol derived ingredients."

The benefit of these products to the non-Muslim population is that the products are free of synthetic binders and pigments and instead have very high proportions of natural minerals like Zinc Oxide, Titanium Oxide, Mica and Iron Oxides which are highly beneficial filters to Ultra Violet rays (SPF).

As I wandered through the site I started to think about just how they made some products since we, as Americans, are accustomed to various emollients like Beeswax (lipstick, eye and lipliners, lip gloss), Petrolatum (concealer, lip balm) and various Alcohol forms (perfume, moisturizer, cleansers) in our products. How exactly were they keeping these products intact? Plant waxes, essential oils and organically derived emollients. Things your skin has an easier time responding to anyway!

I would call this brand revolutionary, brilliant and back to basics... if I had it to play with. Unfortunately it is only available in the UK. Hopefully they'll find this post and send me a few things (hint hint). Or I can wait patiently until it finds it's way across the Pacific.

For more information, see their fan-page.

Hello Gaga?

I can't really say that I am a Lady Gaga fan or even listen to the music all that much. But I'll give it to her, she's got a pretty neat sense of style!

Having established herself as someone who appreciates style and wants to really push the boundaries, we've seen collaborations with various artists and stylist in the fashion industry lay their talents to transforming her for promotional appearances, concerts and music videos. All seem to congeal together into one epitomes Lady Gaga look, but this one is truly a stand-out!

For last weeks episode of "Double Exposure" on Bravo TV, the performer was transformed into another style icon known around the world; Hello Kitty. With a bevvy of fashion accessories created from Hello Kitty products (including discarded lip glosses), the main attraction HAD to be the makeup.

According to People Style Watch the photo-shoot was originally going to use post-production editing to create the large eyed effect, but decided to paint the effect over the top of her eyelids. Making the experience all the more interesting since Gaga had to complete the shoot with her eyes closed!

I couldn't decipher who exactly is responsible for the makeup masterpiece, but you'll notice they also utilized false eyelashes to further create this wide-eyed effect. By layering a set of lashes on the upper lash line and then pasting layers of lashes at the brow line, the eyes took a genuine (if not creepy) shape. For this effect, I'd suggest placing two or even three bands of false lashes to make the statement all the more intriguing.

FACE Stockholm False Eyelashes
; $12

Product Review; "TokiDoki Inferno Bronzer"

I'm going to be blunt; I don't like fancy packaging.

For two reasons, actually.

1. There is the idea of the "gilded lily". Where something is just overly done to the point where the only part of it that is relevant is how it looks instead of it's actual function. I would prefer to have the best eyeshadow, or blush, or whatever in some cheesy paper container as opposed to a horribly performing eyeshadow, or blush, or whatever in a fancy gold package that weighs a pound, sparkles in the sunlight, and sings when you open it. The performance of a product is really what should be most important when choosing cosmetics. When you really think about it, you're not wearing the packaging on your face, you're wearing the product on your face!

2. I hate taking up room in my kit. I have limited space in my TUMI Alpha Bag which is already stuffed to the gills, believe me! Especially since I last weighed it in at 105lbs, the last thing I want is more unnecessary weight while I battle the streets and subways of NYC. If I'm going to shove a new product in my kit, it'd better be worth carrying.

I think these might be.

Although the packaging is a little kitschy, the tones are pretty flattering and read as a slightly shimmery bronze on mostly deeper skin tones. Both tones that tokidoki offers seem to have a yellow undertone as opposed to a red one. They may not look very orange on skin if that is a concern. Although, I would use a light hand or a really soft brush when applying to the skin as the formula is really lightly pressed and comes up a little too much. Although, it makes for an incredibly soft formula that doesn't really feel like you have it on.

Besides a soft formula, it's made without the use of much Talc (drying agent) or Parabens (synthetic preservatives) and, instead, includes the use of Rice Lipids (nourishing ingredient) and Vitamin B.

Over foundation or even as a highlighter would be my suggestion for this product. Alone it would be just fine if you want a little something without having to put on a full face of makeup. Having recently used it on top of a Tinted Moisturizer seems to be optimal because the slight shimmer and light coverage make for an undetectable yet flawless looking complection.

TokiDoki Inferno Bronzer; $22

Thursday, July 22, 2010

BREAKING NEWS! "Wonder Woman by MAC"

Holy Crap!

When reading Temptalia today I happened across this post boasting a report from Womens Wear Daily (WWD) about a MAC Cosmetics launch dedicated to the iconic DC Comics heroine; Wonder Woman.

In many incarnations Wonder Woman has gone from her own series, to a man-hating huntress, to a key member of the famed Justice League alongside the likes of Superman, Batman, The Martian Manhunter, and The Green Lantern. For a short time she was even a blonde!

No news just yet from MAC on exactly which incarnation will influence the packaging or colors but the excitement is certainly building. In the past, MAC has had successful collections with the likes of Barbie, Hello Kitty and Disney Villainesses. To my knowledge, this is the first animated SUPER HERO they'll be paying homage to!

More info when it arrives.

MAC Cosmetics said Wednesday that the company is partnering with DC Comics’ Wonder Woman to create a limited edition color cosmetics collection featuring the illustrated superhero. Set for a spring 2011 launch at all MAC locations worldwide, the lineup is expected to include lipsticks, eye shadows, blush and nail polish ranging in price from $13 to $49.50. (No word on whether metal-deflecting bracelets are part of the collection.) — WWD

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

As seen on TV!

Below is yours truly describing the look for the Douglas Hannant Bridal Show Spring 2011 at the Warren Tricomi Salon at the Plaza Hotel in New York City... whew! Say that three times fast!

Some key products for Douglas Hannant Spring Bridal 2011;

-MAC Face and Body Foundation
-MAC Mineralized Skinfinish Foundation
-FACE Stockholm Pearl Eyeshadow #29
-FACE Stockholm Eye Dust in Clarity
-Cover Girl Outlast Lipstain
-Nixie Crystal Shimmer Lipgloss

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Product Review; "Tom Ford Private Blend Lip Color Collection"

If you can describe these lipsticks without using the word "decadent" I'll buy you a thesaurus.

When the collection was originally released it was to OBSESSIVE reviews. And with good reason. Although it's a bit late for me to be pitching in my two-cents, I haven't obtained these until just recently. Unfortunately Tom and I don't travel in the same circles. Unless, that WAS him in the clearance aisle at Marble Hill Target store...?

A single tube in shade "Bruised Plum" (a rich burgundy shade) arrived to my apartment for a test drive and I immediately pulled it out of the packaging and threw it right on my lips.

If you know me, you know I don't wear any color cosmetic products at all, but for me to truly appreciate all that these lipsticks had to offer, I had to give it a go.

From the moment I picked up the tube and popped off the top, I was struck at how easily it came off. No tugging or familiar "pop" when removed. The turning mechanism was sturdy and rolled very smoothly with no hesitation or "clicking" feeling as with most lipsticks. Almost as if it were being operated by remote control.

The peak of the bullet elegantly rose to the top of the tube revealing the signature "TF" symbol as if to tease the lips before drenching them in luxurious moisture from the blend of essential oils including Shea Butter as it's key emollient. Only the faintest hints of vanilla was apparent after a moment or two but nothing excessive or "perfume-y".

The colors come in various shades ranging from deepest reds to the barest of nudes. I would consider all the shades to be a "medium coverage" product. After one swipe, my "Bruised Plum" was deep and dark and needed only the slightest bit of touching up. A brush would be optimal, but why risk losing any product?! Although the brand only boasts 12 shades, they are rumored to expand the range along with upcoming collections including powders, foundations and skin care.

Where did I hear this? Me. I just said so. Wishful thinking.

If and when Tom decides to expand the collection, I anticipate any other items will reflect the kind of attention to detail that the Lip Color Collection maintains. Complete with beautiful, functional, simple packaging. But, judging from the price point of the lip colors ($45 a tube), I'd expect them to perform just as well!

Tom Ford Private Blend Lip Color; $45

Product Review; "Josie Maran Argan Protect SPF 40+"

Josie Maran, the former face of Maybelline cosmetics throughout the 90's, launched her own cosmetics line in 2007 to wild acclaim. The organically inspired line includes her signature ingredient; Argan Oil.

Argan Oil is renowned for it's healing properties and is experiencing wild popularity in skincare (and haircare) lately. Argan Oil is derived from the Argan Nut in Morocco and is used by locals as a skin salve for irritations, infections, and abrasions as well as a cooking oil... try that with Neosporin!

In it's raw form, Argan Oil is also a highly potent antioxidant protecting against free radical damage from UV rays, pollution and smoke inhalation. It's healing properties make it ideal for maintaining skin elasticity since it's oil form is an excellent humectant, binding water to skin cells and keeping them from losing moisture.

"Protect SPF 40+" has as it's main selling point, Argan Oil in combination with Jojoba Oil, Pomegranate Oil, and Vitamin E to help maintain skin's texture against the heat of the sun's rays. All, of which, are "essential oils" that the body recognizes and immediately absorbs without clogging pores. The natural minerals of the formula serve as the true star of the product; blending Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide in a light form to give broadband protection against UVA and UVB rays.

The formula lends itself to easy application without feeling sticky or thick. Something I expected from the product description. I was originally concerned that this would have a "tacky" feel from the ingredients listing which included a variety of emollients or maybe have a pale overcast because of the SPF minerals, but alas, it's lovely. There's no film-y texture or hazy color.

Although, I would recommend using powder products or an oil-free foundation if you must. I find that if you layer too many moist products with this kind of skincare, it can become a little shiny as the day wears on. But, if you're in need of an SPF in the first place, it's a good bet you'd be fine with not much else.

Josie Maran Protect SPF 40+; $45

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Field Trip; Saks 5th Avenue Cosmetics Counter

Today was another scorcher! And as an added bonus, the heat came with relentless humidity; reminiscent of that first step into a high school locker room. Not the kind of weather you'd like to spend the day in. So it was easy for me to take refuge in an air conditioned climate surrounded by good lighting and decadent items to browse through.

Cosmetic counters are a bustle with fragrances, makeup, skincare and other intrigues designed to stimulate your inner consumer complete with sales people to coax that consumer into emptying their wallet. But you're "just looking" you say? Not likely once they've gotten their hands on you.

Being male, I tend not to fear the grasp of a makeup artist pushing the newest foundation or the perfume sniper poised for fire! Dudes in a department store usually don't purchase such wares and aren't really worth the effort. Although I will always get the odd looks from time to time, for the most part, sales people think I'm just waiting for my girlfriend who's trying on something at the next counter. But, being that I am a makeup artist, I tend to use this prejudice to my advantage.

Now, don't get me wrong, I've got questions and needs as a consumer as well, but being in the industry, I'd prefer to be left to my own and prompt service when necessary. Ideally, a simple "do you need help with anything" is more than satisfactory when doing a little product testing. If followed with, "let me know if you have any questions" or "my name is ___, let me know when you're ready" would be sufficient as well.

Hell, if I get a "HOLLA!", that'd be fine too.

At the Tom Ford Beauty counter, I was the only person looking at the lipstick schematic, taking each tube and swatching it on the back of my hand to see how the color reads. A gentleman behind the counter asked me if I needed any help to which I lifted my head, made eye contact and replied nonchalantly, "no, thank you". I continued to examine the product; looking at the consistency, the color, how it wears when smudged, when he continued to make comments about how lovely they are, how nice they look, etc..., to which I lifted my head, made eye contact and replied, "they really are".

So here we are engaging in friendly conversation when a second employee comes up and asks "do you need some help?". Well, I imagine this person didn't quite see that I was already being helped but, trying to keep from being rude, I replied, "no, thank you" and continued on my business. With both sales people directly before me with no need to engage me, they began engaging each other. And along comes our THIRD salesperson with the familiar "do you need some help?".

By this point, I was becoming a bit irritated but I actually had developed a question in my head; "can I see the ingredients listing?". Salesperson #2 broodingly agreed and fetched the lipstick box and handed it over ingredients side up. The 3 of them watched as I read the box... as an audience would. Feeling now on display, I handed the box back but realized that, although hovering before me, no one was actually paying attention to me. So, not a terribly attentive audience.

I placed the box in front of the group and went back to examining the colors when I was asked, "are you looking to avoid an allergy?". An incisive observation that suited my concern. But when I began to answer I realized that, once again, no one was really paying attention.

I wanted to remember the order that I swiped the colors onto my hand so I took out my camera phone to take a picture of the lipstick schematic when I was told "THERE ARE NO PICTURES ALLOWED IN THE BUILDING" by salesperson #3.

Having committed a faux-pas, I apologized and asked if I might borrow a pen and paper. To which I was given, very begrudgingly, by #2 when #1 excused himself and #3 looked on agitated.

As I was writing down the color order I realized I DID actually want to buy one or two colors to have in my kit but, the experience left me feeling very uneasy, and I decided NOT to make the purchase.

Trying to recover from my first sales attack, I wandered about Saks when I came upon the Dolce & Gabana Beauty counter. I walked up to the products and took a scan of the color selection, noticing a few items that caught my attention.

A sales lady came up to me and said something to the effect of "hello, did you need help finding anything?" to which I replied, "no, thank you, I'm just looking". She was very kind and offered her assistance should I need it to which I thanked her. After a few moments of playing with products, I realized that I, again, wanted to see ingredients for a particular item. She was keeping busy with a task but gladly interrupted herself to hand over the packaging with ingredients side up. I opted not to get the product and handed it back to her. She asked me if I was interested in the purchase and I said, "I'm sorry, no" but she replied thankfully and offered me a "good day".

Even though I wasn't really interested in the product, I gotta say, her demeanor left me feeling like I should have bought it anyway.

When I left the building into the wet heat of NYC, I thought about my experience and how the service affected my purchasing decisions. Even though I preferred the Tom Ford products I'd rather not give my money over to pushy sales people. Maybe they should have the Dolce & Gabana sales lady take over that counter.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Product Review; "Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation SPF 15"

The heat in NYC is INTOLERABLE! If you're walking around the city with a face full of makeup, you understand how difficult it is to keep it looking like skin. A tremendous amount of touch-ups is inevitable and can easily become a case of "cake face". The search for the right product in this situation can be really laborious.

Bobbi Brown sent me a press package a few months ago with a slew of foundations for me to play with. Among them was the "Skin Foundation SPF 15" and, I gotta be honest, I wasn't impressed. The formula I found to be a bit dry which concerned me when setting with any kind of powder. So I kept them off to the side thinking I'd give it a second chance at some point in time. Everyone deserves a second chance, right?

Yesterday, that opportunity finally arrived. While on set in 104 degree weather, this particular foundation seemed optimal. The really light texture and medium coverage was ideal for a shoot that would keep my models in perfect condition even through a bit of sweating. The formula absorbed excess oil production without moving around and maintained it's coverage even when dabbed with a bit of tissue to pick up beads of sweat.

I have to say, I'm glad I hung onto this foundation because it really saved the day. Another formula may have bunched or slipped causing a slew of touch-ups and uncomfortable models. Plus, it comes in a huge variety of colors and tones to choose from.

The only other draw back I could think of was the packaging which is a glass bottle. Not an issue for most people, but I tend to be on the clumsy side and drop just about everything. But if this foundation keeps working like it did, I'll make it a point to be a little more careful!

Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation SPF 15; $45

Field Trip; "Rootstein Mannequin Launch"

MAO Public Relations was gracious enough to have me attend the release of a new line of mannequins by RootStein, a company dedicated to creating the most beautiful display mannequins I have ever seen. Some of which are recreated off of the most popular models working in fashion today.

The realistic quality of the mannequins is perplexing. At some points, I forgot that I wasn't looking at real people, particularly when examing the "makeup" job done on the immaculate faces.

The contour was really inspiring and an obvious throwback to 70's glamour with an ethereal twist. Really gorgeous. Not only were the looks completed with false lashes but also pops of lavendar and soft blues with a twinge of glitter and glimmer to create the kind of dimension that makes the craftsmanship only that more enviable.

The attention to detail is marvelous and has been maintained by the works of Kevin Arpino who took over creative operations since the passing of the company's founder Adel Rootstein.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Product Review; "got2b: glued Spiking Glue"

I have a tendency to shave my head, especially in the Summer months when the New York humidity and heat can wreak havoc on a meticulously manicured hairstyle. It's usually nothing but shorn heads and baseball caps for me!

But my hair usually grows pretty quickly, coarsely and unmanageably after about 6 weeks and will easily take on whatever style my pillow has in store for it. So when it's in that weird stage of not quite grown and not quite long enough to slick back I find myself at a loss for styling options. While I'm not a fan of heavy skin or hair products, I decided to give this "hair glue" a shot. With a small amount rubbed between my palms I smoothed it over my hair to create an off center part just to polish up my look and, to my astonishment, it held.

Now, I caution you, it dries quickly and feels a bit sticky which concerned me at first, but after I rinsed my hands and lightly stroked my style it took on a softer look and molded easily with a dense hair brush giving me a few seconds to touch up my hairline and sideburns.

Looking good with little fuss and a style that will hold all day even on my brier-patch of a head. Worth the $6, I'd say.

got2b glued Spiking Glue; $5.95

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Product Review; "Colorganics Hempseed Oil Lipsticks"

Colorganics is an "organic cosmetics" company that sells a limited line of cosmetic products that includes lipsticks, lip liners, glosses, lip balms and lip tints at Whole Foods Market. The line may also be carried at other outlets, but I've only come across them here. The company has been around since 2006 with a small following of clientele looking for a "safe" alternative to mainstream cosmetic products.

The line itself is quite nice. The pigmentation of the lipsticks come from non-FD&C sources but are, however, not listed aside from the usual suspects; Mica, Titanium Dioxide, Iron Oxide, Carmine... all natural pigments found in all makeup. However, the richness of the color is quite striking when layered and the formula glides onto skin very easily with a slight moisturizing sheen. The matte lipsticks (pictured below) aren't necessarily matte but are lovely nonetheless. Unfortunately, when I'm looking for a truly MATTE lipstick, I'd prefer no sheen, but it doesn't mean these in particular couldn't be dusted with a little powder or layered to create a denser finish.

The texture is very forgiving and would wear best on lips looking for a bit of moisture due to a formula rich in Organic Beeswax, Organic Hempseed Oil, and Jojoba Oil. All excellent humectants designed to hydrate dry, cracked lips.

Colorganics "Hemp Organics" lipstick shades in "Crimson", "Black Cherry", "Java Bean" and "Sienna".

Product Review; "Anthony Logistics Deodorant"

"Objective; to not smell bad".

Well, how can you go wrong?

Anthony Logistics is a brand geared toward men who want to stay groomed without being fussy about it. All the packaging is clean and concise with no frills and outfitted with a clear "objective" on the container. Very clever.

The deodorant comes in a familiar twist up tube and contains multiple essential oils and extracts designed to battle sweat glands for superiority. The formula also contains Aloe Vera to nourish the skin, Calendula to reduce irritation, Orange Extract to resurface dry skin, and other botanical ingredients to relieve issues ranging from irritation to oil production. And it's free of Alchohol and Aluminum which are two ingredients associated with multiple health issues that are too numerous to list. And quite depressing, I might add.

This product goes on smoothly and, surprisingly, a bit dry. I haven't found it to be very obvious that I'm wearing it, nor does it leave marks on the pits of my t-shirts. The fragrance is negligible and reminiscent of orange peels that dissipates almost immediately. Through the day, I forget that I have it on and no one compliments me on my scent. Actually, no one says anything about the way I smell.

I'd call that a success!

Anthony Logistics Alchohol-Free Deodorant; $14.00

Product Review; "Covergirl Queen Collection Bronzer"

Trying to maintain a summer glow all season long can be a bit of a task. Particularly when it comes to baking for hours under the glare of tanning beds and incurring multiple risks of damage to the skin. For a more practical approach, might I suggest a bronzer?

Swept along the contours of the face with a powder brush, the Covergirl Queen Collection Bronzer subtly accentuates contours and creates a richness to the skin that no amount of self tanner will ever accomplish. Used in conjunction with a tinted moisturizer or light foundation, this bronzer is tremendously useful for maintaining a healthful look with no tell-tale orange-ish tones.

With it's mineral complex to nourish skin, it even controls oil production and has the tiniest bit of sheen to keep skin looking radiant even under the harshest light. It comes in 3 shades suitable for the lightest and deepest complexions and because of the high amount of pigment in each tone, reads beautifully on film without looking heavy.

Covergirl Queen Collection Bronzer; $6.99
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