Hydrate your life: Reviewing 5 popular hydrating face masks.

I don’t know about you, but my skin tends to be on the drier side and always gets worse in the winter. My current skin care routine has been working well to keep my skin hydrated, but sometimes the skin just needs a little extra…you know what I mean? So, last week I went to my local ULTA on the hunt for a hydrating face mask and picked up five, because who can just choose one? Below are my reviews of each face mask, but I would love to hear your opinions and recommendations!

 

Tony Moly ‘Master Lab Hyaluronic Acid’ Hydrating Mask

This was the first face mask of the week and I have to say my absolute favorite (although I still like some of the others). It is the only one that had very noticeable results. I’m not super knowledgeable about the formula, but I believe the reason for this is the addition of hyaluronic acid (HA). A base level description of HA is that it helps your skin absorb moisture more easily. I suggest doing your own research to learn more about it.

The evening I used this mask, my skin was particularly tired and sad looking. I left it on for 15 minutes with low expectations… but after using it my skin really felt and looked more plump and hydrated. Even my husband noticed! In addition to the overall results I found that it was cooling, but not so much that it gave me a headache. It also didn’t have a strong smell, which I really liked. Over the years I have noticed that I tend to break out more when I use skincare that has too much fragrance to it.

In the morning, my skin still looked more hydrated than usual and I noticed that my under-eyes seemed lighter. If you are looking for a hydrating mask that really shows results, this is the one I suggest. I also recommend adding a hyaluronic acid serum to your daily skincare routine, it has done wonders for my skin. I will talk about this more in an upcoming blog post so keep your eyes out for it.

 

Burt’s Bees Hydrating Sheet Mask with Clary Sage

There were so many things wrong with this face mask, I don’t even know where to begin. First of all, it was way too big for my face — which is more of an annoyance than anything. But the material also felt like a baby wipe and smelled like one too.

With regard to results… there were absolutely none (and the mask left a film on my face which was very sticky). I do not recommend this mask at all. Spend $2 more and get any Tony Moly face mask and you will be happier with your purchase. This is not to say that all Burt’s Bees products are bad. All brands are bound to have some duds and this just happens to be one of them.

 

I Dew Care ‘Keep Calm and Hydrate On’ Sheet Mask

Contrary to what I said above about fragrances, I have a soft spot for the smell of coconut, and this mask smelled like all of my coconut dreams. My initial reaction to this mask (beside it smelling amazing) is that it felt a lot more cooling than the first two masks. However, there were no noticeable results after 10 minutes of wearing it. Although, I have to say that my skin definitely smelled good and the mask not leave a film like the Burt’s Bees mask did.

 

Tony Moly ‘I’m Lavender’ Hydrating Sheet Mask

This was the only other mask that I had somewhat noticeable results with, though not as much as the Master Lab Hyaluronic Acid mask. And I’m sure you noticed, this one is from Tony Moly as well! In regard to scent, the lavender was not overwhelming which was really nice. I left it on for 20 minutes and afterward my skin felt soft and plump, but again not as much as the first mask. Also, this mask stuck on very well. If you do not want a hydrating mask with hyaluronic acid, I would go with this one since the results were more noticeable than the others.

SNP Hydrating Face Mask – Koala

Out of all the masks this one was the most fun to try and looked really silly (sadly it was right before bed and I didn’t snap a picture). I mean my husband could not stop laughing when I put this on! In regard to the results, I thought I noticed my skin looking a bit more hydrated than before (but it could also have been in my head). I will definitely buy more from this brand, mainly because of the fun animal faces. If you have tried any of the SNP animal sheet masks, which one do you like?

I hope you enjoyed this post! I had a fun time trying out these different masks. Please leave comment below if you would like to see similar posts or have requests for something you would like me to review!

 

Out of all the masks this one was the most fun to try and looked really silly (sadly it was right before bed and I didn’t snap a picture). I mean my husband could not stop laughing when I put this on! In regard to the results, I thought I noticed my skin looking a bit more hydrated than before (but it could also have been in my head). I will definitely buy more from this brand, mainly because of the fun animal faces. If you have tried any of the SNP animal sheet masks, which one do you like?

I hope you enjoyed this post! I had a fun time trying out these different masks. Please leave comment below if you would like to see similar posts or have requests for something you would like me to review!

Hydrating Sheet Mask – Koala • $5
I’m Real Lavender Sheet Mask • Tony Moly • $3.75
Burt’s Bees Hydrating Sheet Mask • Burt’s Bees • $3.29
Master Lab Hyaluronic Acid Mask Sheet • Tony Moly • $4

Daily Makeup Routine.

“Treat your makeup like jewelry for the face. Play with colors, shapes, structure – it can transform you.” – Francois Nars

Everybody has their own makeup style. Some prefer a full-face look, while others prefer to go as natural as possible. My preferred makeup style is dewy and natural. I want to look like I just stepped off the plane from spending a month in Costa Rica.  Here are some of the products that I’m currently using in my 2019 make-up routine, many of which you might have already have tried.

1. FLOWER ‘In your Prime’ Hydrating Primer

I started using this primer back in December, and for the price it is an excellent product.  It is hydrating, lightweight, and my foundation looks beautiful on top of it (plus who doesn’t love Drew Barrymore?). Now, am I jumping up and down about this product? The answer is no. Personally, because I have dry skin (especially between my brows), I wish it left my skin a little more hydrated and dewier. But I will definitely be buying it again. I have yet to find a primer that is reasonably priced and also matches my needs, but this comes pretty damn close.

FLOWER ‘In your Prime’ Hydrating Primer, $10.00; Ulta.com

2. YSL Touché Eclat ‘All-In-One Glow’

This foundation has changed the game for me. Seriously. It is the dewiest, most hydrating foundation I have ever worn and is just BEAUTIFUL on the skin. Yves Saint Laurent ‘All-In-One Glow’ is a medium coverage, hydrating foundation. It is NOT transfer proof so make sure that you set your foundation. I only set underneath my eyes and in my T-zone because I don’t like a lot of powder on my skin (due to my skin being drier), but to each their own.

I highly recommend this foundation and I find that Sephora’s shade matcher is usually pretty accurate for this product. Just remember to use your own judgment as well. The BIG downside of this foundation is that they only offer 12 shades, and 11 of them are white. In my opinion, YSL totally missed the boat on this foundation regarding their shade range. I mean come on! Are we still fighting this battle?  How many bad launches do there have to be before companies start releasing more shades? This is a serious issue and I hope brands start jumping on the Fenty bandwagon and offering more diverse shade options. That being said, if you happen to match one of their shades I would highly recommend trying this foundation.

YSL Touché Eclat ‘All-In-One Glow’, $48.00; Sephora.com

3. Glossier Stretch Concealer

I’ll start by being blunt – if you are a full coverage, turn me into a glass doll type of person, just skip to the next item. But, if you like a more natural look, this product is excellent. The Glossier Stretch Concealer is a VERY natural concealer and it is definitely not full coverage. It goes on very smoothly and really brightens your under eyes. It also has buildable coverage so you can get closer to medium coverage if you’d like. Just make sure you set this concealer quickly, as it will crease.

In regard to Glossier themselves, their products are beautiful and so is the company. Glossier is all about natural beauty, personal style, and empowering women to be themselves. If you want to learn more about their company I recommend exploring their website.

 Glossier Stretch Concealer, $18.00; Glossier.com

4. Physicians Formula ‘Butter Bronzer’

I was recently on the search for a new bronzer and I did not want to put a lot of money into a product. For years I had heard the likes of Tati Westbrook, Jeffrey Star, and other YouTubers praising Physician Formula’s ‘Butter Bronzer’, but I had never actually tried it out. I have to say… OMG I am in LOVE. The formula is so smooth, has buildable coverage, and it smells like a beach in a tropical paradise.

Physicians Formula ‘Butter Bronzer’, $14.99; Ulta.com

5. NARS ‘Orgasm’

This is another product that I heard about over and over again but had not tried until I received a sample of it in the mail from Sephora… And then I purchased it almost immediately. I know, I know, I am way behind the times. But believe the hype, this is the most stunning ‘peachy pink’ blush I have ever used.

NARS ‘Orgasm’, $30.00; Sephora.com

6. MILK Makeup ‘Face Gloss’

MILK Makeup’s ‘Face Gloss’ is a multi-use (and vegan formula) gloss that can be applied to lips, cheekbones, eyelids, and even your body. It creates an opulent natural look to give you just the right amount of glow. It does stay sticky, but it is a gloss so you shouldn’t be surprised by that. To me, it is the perfect all-in-one makeup product for a natural, radiant look.

MILK Makeup ‘Face Gloss’, $10.00; Milkmakeup.com

7. Benefit ‘Precisely My Brow’ Pencil

This was my first venture back to a brow pencil after using the Anastasia Beverly Hills ‘Dipbrow Pomade’. I had tried the Anastasia ‘Brow Definer’ prior and did not love it (I know, crazy). Let me tell you that I am not very good at doing my brows, but I have been loving how they have been looking with Benefit’s ‘Precisely My Brow’. It has a firm enough point that I can neatly fill in my 90’s over-waxed eyebrows, without looking like eyebrow dog. Also, I have yet to break the tip, which I did more than once with the ABH ‘Brow Definer’ (I think that might have been my fault though, maybe I should give it another chance?).

Benefit ‘Precisely My Brow’ Pencil, $24.00; Sephora.com

8. Loreal ‘Lash Paradise’ Voluminous Mascara (non-waterproof)

If you follow the make-up community you will have already heard Loreal ‘Lash Paradise’ being called the drug-store dupe for the Too Faced ‘Better Than Sex’ Mascara. I’m going to leave those comparisons up to the professionals, but I will tell you that this mascara is one of the best I have ever used. In my opinion, for the price point, this should be your weapon of choice. The formula volumizes and lengthens your lashes without making them clumpy. Seriously, try Loreal’s ‘Lash Paradise’, I guarantee you will love it.

*Tip: make sure you are not purchasing the waterproof version (unless you really need to), because that stuff does not come off!

Loreal ‘Lash Paradise’ Voluminous Mascara, $7.39; Target.com

I hope you enjoyed this post and if you have any questions please leave them below!

5 Tips to Buying the PERFECT Eyeglasses.

I’ve worked in the optical industry for over five years, and one of the questions I hear every day is, “what’s in style?”. Over the years my answer has changed along with passing seasons and trends, but now I can confidently say, “a little bit of everything”. Fashion in 2019 is all about personal style — What makes you feel most like you? What makes you happy when you put it on?

THAT BEING SAID, there are ground rules. Something that looks good on other people is not necessarily going to look good on you. But most importantly, although eyeglasses are fashion, they are still a medical device. This is why it is important to respect that your optician and optometrist are not just trying to sell you an expensive accessory. Opticians are trained to find glasses that will fit both your visual and fashion needs.

This article will walk you through 5 must-know tips when purchasing glasses.

1. SHAPE

I’m going to quote Captain Barbossa from the Pirates of the Caribbean and say that the face diagrams you can find online are, “more what you’d call ‘guidelines’ than actual ‘rules’.” The general advice is usually to choose a shape that is opposite of your face. If you have a rounder face, go with a square or rectangular frame. If you have a square face or a sharp jawline, go with a rounded frame that will soften your features. Ovals can generally go with any shape. That being said, our heads are not just featureless blobs on top of our body. Consider your eye size/shape and how high your cheekbones are when trying on glasses to make sure that your frames fit your face perfectly.

Photo by Studio 7042 on Pexels.com

TIP → If you love the cat-eye look and you have a rounder face, go with a cat-eye that has a more square bottom.


2. FIT

If a frame does not fit you properly, no matter how cute it is, you will not want to wear it. PERIOD. So how do you make sure that the frames you are purchasing fit you correctly?

SHNOZE FIT →

There are two main nose bridges you will encounter: a non-adjustable plastic bridge or adjustable nose pads. Plastic bridges are the most important to get right because there is really no way to adjust them. To make sure you get a PERFECT fit with a plastic shnoze bridge, it needs to fit like a glove. That means it needs to hit your nose on all three points (both sides and the top). It can’t have any gaps and should not shift side to side on your nose. The exception to this is a key-hole bridge (looks like a key-hole), where the key-hole part will typically sit above your nose.

If you are someone with a flat nose bridge then I suggest an alternative fit frame or something with adjustable nose pads. Another thing to note is that one type of nose bridge is not necessarily more durable or comfortable than the other, so the choice comes down to personal preference.

TEMPLE/SIDE/ARM (whatever you want to call it)

The next step on the road to the perfect pair of glasses is making sure that the temples fit you. First, we will discuss length. You want to make sure you have enough length that the temples can be bent at 45-degree angle behind your ear. This is to ensure that your glasses will stay on your noggin!

Next, make sure that the temples are not hitting the sides of your face. Many people think that if the glasses hit the side of your face, then they fit. This is not correct! If your temples are hitting the sides of your face it means that over time your glasses will 1) Give you a headache 2) Slip down your nose and 3) Leave red marks on the side of your face.

EYE SIZE →

In regards to sizing, glasses are just like jeans or shoes. Depending on who makes the frame, the same size in one brand can be completely different in another brand. When considering if a frame fits someone or not, I want to make sure that their eyes are as close to the center of the lens as possible. The reason for this is if the distance between your eyes is smaller than the distance between the center of the lenses (decentration), 1) You will end up with thicker lenses, and 2) It makes your eyes look closer together and no one wants that!

You will also want to consider how far the lenses come down on your cheekbones. Eyeglasses that highlight your cheekbones will show off your features and be more flattering.

3. LENS OPTIONS

The five main plastic materials you will encounter when purchasing glasses are: CR-39, Polycarbonate, Trivex, Hi-Index 1.67, and Hi-Index 1.74.

CR-39 →

CR-39/Plastic 1.50/Standard plastic is the lowest grade plastic you can get for your lenses, and is considered a budget option. It is not necessarily a poor quality material, but it will not give you the best vision possible. For people who have higher prescriptions (-/+ 2.00 and beyond), going with these options will cause you to have thicker lenses.

POLYCARBONATE vs. TRIVEX→

Polycarbonate and Trivex are both very durable, lightweight materials, and will allow you to have lighter, thinner lenses. The main difference between the two is clarity. Polycarbonate has aberrations in the material that can distort your vision. For this reason, many offices do not even offer Polycarbonate as an option anymore. Trivex has much better clarity and is what I always recommend to patients, barring prescription limitations.

You will see that many online retailers offer Polycarbonate instead of Trivex. This is because it is cheaper to produce, allowing them to charge more affordable prices. Do not be mistaken though, this is not the best material option out there.

HI-INDEX 1.67 & 1.74 →

Hi-Index materials allow you to have the thinnest, lightest lenses possible (at least in the U.S.). The choice between the two simply comes down to how thin you want your lenses. Hi-Index 1.74 will be thinner and lighter than the 1.67 option. For people with high prescriptions, getting the thinnest lightest material will allow you to avoid the “coke-bottle” stigma, and will also offer you better vision. Hi-Index options are also great for those who have mid-range prescriptions but have chosen a rim-less, no-rim, or cat-eye frame.

TIP → Another way to make sure that your lenses are as thin as possible is to get a smaller, rounder frame. The smaller and rounder the frame, the thinner your lenses will be. Also, steering clear of cat-eyes or frames with lots of edges will ensure thinner lenses.

4. COATINGS

Many opticians I know have a bad habit of feature vomiting. This makes people uncomfortable and can also lead to the feeling of being sold to, rather than being informed. There are a lot of different coatings and upgrades you can add to your lenses, but the two that I always get on my glasses, and will always recommend to others, are an Anti-reflective and Scratch coating.

ANTI-REFLECTIVE/ANTI-GLARE COATINGS (AR)→

– Reduces glare when driving at night or in bright conditions.

– Reduces glare from computer screens and phones.

– Helps you see clearer!

– Reduces eye-strain, especially for those who spend a lot of time on their computer, phone, television, or other electronic devices.  

– Allows your loved ones to see your eyes instead of glare off of your glasses.

The higher the quality of AR coating you get, the better each of these benefits will be, so when you have a choice of getting a higher quality AR coating, go with it! You may also have the option to get an AR coating with blue-blocking properties, like Essilor Crizal Prevencia. Blue-blocking AR coatings help reduce eye-strain even more by blocking the blue-violet lights that are emitted from the screens of our electronic devices. Research says this will help you sleep better, as blue-violet light from our phones and computers at night essentially “tricks” our bodies into thinking it’s day time. Of course, I have simplified things down for this post, so I recommend doing your own research as well if you are interested in this topic.

TIP → If you clean your glasses with soap make sure it does not contain citrus, as that will ruin your anti-reflective coating. If you have paid for a high-quality AR coating and it is flaking off (and you have not used citrus soap or had the glasses for many years), this is a defect so contact the office you purchased them from.

SCRATCH COATING →

Scratch coating doesn’t need a list, it does what it says: it will help keep your lenses from developing scratches. That being said, plastic lenses are more vulnerable to scratching so take advantage of the scratch coat warranties that your optometry office offers you if you notice any issues.

TIP → The best way to prevent scratching is to clean and store your glasses properly.

Photo by Kelvinkul Akparanta on Pexels.com

5. PERSONAL STYLE

Last, but definitely not least, you have to consider YOUR personal style. If the glasses are not something that you will want to put on every day (even if you don’t have to wear them every day), then don’t get them.

This also applies to online eyewear retailers such as Warby Parker and Zenni Optical. Even $50.00 is waste if it is something that you aren’t going to wear. My tip is to think about what you wear on a daily basis: Are you someone who wears a lot of colors? Or are you like me and wear mostly neutrals (gray, black, white, etc.)? Do you prefer to wear your hair up or down?

With that being said, please remember to have FUN with it! Try on styles you wouldn’t normally go for. Push your personal boundaries, don’t put yourself in a box of your own creation. A fun frame doesn’t mean it has to be something crazy. You can have a fun color and a simple shape or a fun shape and a simple color. You might be surprised by what you like!

This post is not promoted in any way, shape or form by the companies listed in this article.

Beautiful Beginnings.

I tend to be a procrastinator when it comes to investing in big personal goals. More often then not I get distracted or overwhelmed and push working on these goals off until some “later date” that always seems to get “later”. But at 26, I’ve decided that is no longer acceptable. I will not live my life wishing I could do something when all it takes is a bit of work and persistence.

My goal is to start out small, with one blog post a week. That’s doable, right? One post on something that interests me. This includes fashion, health, beauty, and lifestyle advice/inspiration.

If anyone has a story about how they have pushed themselves to do something they have always wanted to do, please leave a comment below. I would love to hear all of your inspirational stories!