Have you ever see a bar of soap as cute as this Frida Kahlo Cannabis Rose Artisan Soap Bar by Aura Artisan Soap? I can’t say that I have. I met owner and soap creator Aura de Leon recently at the White Label Expo, and she was so happy that I recognized Frida’s unique unibrow, which she has captured in her handcrafted soap that is a tribute to the legendary Mexican artist.
While most of the street art that I discover on my adventures is clearly tagged, sometimes that tag is hard to decipher, and I need some assistance identifying the artist. By connecting with artists on Instagram, I’ve learned that they all seem to know and support each other, which is cool and very helpful. If I don’t know the artist behind a work that I want to put on the blog, and the first person I ask doesn’t know, then they know someone who does. This is how I ended up connecting with the creator of an unsigned series of works that I’ve been seeing on the streets, and documenting, since around Christmastime last year. Each of the paste-ups in this very distinctive series features one to three still life images accompanied by a one-word title, and the artist’s signature conspicuously absent. If you live in the east village or downtown, there’s no way you haven’t seen them. All I can say is that they speak to me.
I like to think of myself as a low-maintenance babe. I’m not a slave to an elaborate make-up routine, so I want my skin to look good, even if I’m leaving the house with just a dusting of powder on my face. In NYC especially, the colder months mean harsh weather conditions combined with the drying effects of indoor heat that can wreak havoc on your complexion. To keep your skin looking as young as possible, it’s definitely worth investing in quality skincare products that will cleanse, moisturize and protect your face, so that you look fresh and youthful, with or without make up. Recently, I was given the opportunity to review a new, female-founded skincare product line called James Anthony. After a few weeks of use, these fine products have become part of my daily routine.
Jennifer Hayes, founder and CEO of James Anthony Skincare, is an industry veteran with 20 years of experience. Based on her own issues with sensitive skin, rosacea, breakouts and aging, and her frustration with a full range of products — from OTC to prescription treatments — Jennifer developed James Anthony based on a whole new way of treating, repairing and protecting the skin. Using unique Peptides and enzyme-release technology, James Anthony offers a results-driven skincare line unlike any other on the market. The dramatic effect of the peptides on the complexion offers visible results, increasing daily skin repair without irritation, while the enzyme-release technology allows for deeper penetration into the skin, ultimately better results, and less irritation than other topical skincare treatments.
These claims are impressive, sure, but I know that the only way to prove that the products really deliver the results promised is to try them. I started using the James Anthony skincare line at the beginning of October, just as the changing weather was making my complexion noticeably dry and flaky. Below, I’ll show you each product I’m using, explain what it does, and offer my own experience. Here we go.
The fist step in basic skincare is cleansing. Come Undone ($28) is gentle pH-neutral cleanser formulated to remove makeup and impurities without stripping away skin’s natural oils. Come Undone contains a probiotic and peptide complex that acts as an antimicrobial agent and an anti-inflammatory, and helps regulate defenses in the skin.
The photo above shows how Come Undone looks when you pump one application into your palm: light and foamy. I was skeptical that this lightweight foam was substantial enough to clean the days worth of ‘NYC atmosphere’ and make-up off of my face, because I’d been using a cleanser with a creamier, thicker consistency, but I was soon won over. The foam lathers well as you circulate it around your face with your finger tips, and it rinses clean with just a few splashes of water. There is no need to ‘scrub’ your face, or use a washcloth, although I suppose you could use one if desired. I like the way my face feels fresh and smooth after washing it with Come Undone.
After cleansing, you want to tone and moisturize your skin. T.L.C. toner ($28, above right) is formulated with multiple acids that work to treat and clarify skin, and probiotics that help balance skin resulting in a healthy, glowing skin tone, T.L.C (stand for Treat, Level, Clarify) is formulated to be gentle enough for daily use, but effective enough to deliver maximum results. Offering antioxidant protection, T.L.C. prepares the skin to accept skincare products that follow its application.
I’d like to point out here that since all of the James Anthony products come in well-designed packaging that employs with a “pump” delivery system (as opposed to unscrewing a cap and squeezing or pouring the product) each one dispenses just enough product to do its job, and there is no waste. I apply two to three light sprays of the T.L.C. toner on a cotton square, and it is enough to tone my entire face. I can also tell that the Come Undone cleanser has worked well because I see virtually no make-up residue on the puff after applying the toner to my skin. T.L.C. toner is non-drying and makes my skin feel tingly fresh.
Next, you want to treat and moisturize. In the evening before bed, I use Resurrect P.M. Cream ($88) — a true age-reversal treatment. Resurrect is designed to treat serious aging signs with the most advanced skin technology, resulting in rejuvenated skin, even skin tone, and stimulation of the skin’s daily repair via a pro-active peptide complex. I spread one application of this lightweight serum over my face and throat, and it dries almost instantly. There is greasy feel at all and you can next apply additional moisturizer, if desired.
Vivify ($68) is a lightweight hydrating day cream formulated to repair, replenish and provide the perfect balance of moisture for healthy, glowing skin. Vivify combines key vitamins, nutrients, collagen-stimulating peptides and more for an increase in elasticity and softer, smoother, and more even skin tone. I enjoy the creamy feel of this moisturizer on my skin, and it absorbs quickly. Vivify helped to heal my flaky skin issue within a couple of days after I started using these products, and my face feels soothed after use. This is a terrific moisturizer for all skin types.
Holy Veil Primer, SPF 35($48) is my favorite product in the line! This broad-spectrum chemical-free self-adjusting tinted sunscreen provides skin with antioxidants and essential vitamins while protecting it from the sun’s harmful rays. Used as a primer under makeup or alone, Holy Veil evens skin tone, smooths the skin, helps with flawless makeup application and helps retain the skin’s moisture for a lasting healthy glow.
I absolutely love this primer! I’ve been wearing it alone, without any added foundation, on the weekends and my skin looks amazing. Holy Veil goes on smooth like velvet, distributes evenly and seems to have an oil absorbing property because there is no shine on my face for hours after I apply it. I would compare this product to Clinique Super City Block (SPF 40) except I like Holy Veil much better.
The Genie in a Bottle ($98) is your secret weapon for combating extreme dryness. This maximum moisture-boosting serum instantly transforms dull, dry, damaged, and unbalanced skin into soft, radiant, balanced, beautiful and healthy skin. A multi functional serum that goes beyond basic beauty oil, Genie in a Bottle can be used whenever a nourishing moisture boost is needed and it offers rapid and deep penetration of actives for cellular regeneration, making it perfect for use on the face, neck, and hands. It can also be used on the ends of your hair, or (my favorite) massaged into dry cuticles and fingertips. You can even add a few drops to your favorite creams or lotions to boost its moisturizing benefits. Just a drop or two goes along way, and you can achieve truly miraculous results.
Smooth Move Mask ($58) is your once a week go-to for exfoliating and revitalizing your skin. Packed with ingredients such as papaya, cucumber and aloe vera, this mask instantly moisturizes and calms the face. Grapefruit and pineapple combine to remove dead skin cells, leaving the face with a hydrated glow and allowing other James Anthony Skincare products to penetrate even deeper into the skin. Smooth Move is unlike any other mask on the market.
Smooth Move, as you can see, is a lovely shade of green, and its light fragrance recalls all of its natural ingredients. I like that this mask is a gently exfoliating, wash off mask, rather than one that needs to be left to dry on the face, and then peeled or washed off. If you have sensitive skin, this mask is especially ideal.
I have enjoyed discovering the benefits of using the James Anthony Skincare line and I have honestly seen benefits from each product even in a short amount of time. I would even say that they are fun to use, and I look forward to taking better care of my skin with these products. The entire James Anthony Skincare product line in now available online via James Anthony Skincare Dot Com. Get 20% Off your first order and check out a few sales going on right now!
Anne and I spent a couple of hours on Saturday afternoon checking out Beautycon NYC over at Pier 36 event space. While this event appears to be very finely focused on Teens, we managed to have some fun checking out the various Beauty Brands bringing their products directly to the enthusiastic throng of fans that came out on a cloudy day for this annual event.
We especially enjoyed our time spent at the bareMinerals booth, where they are celebrating the launch of their new liquid foundation make up and eye primer, BARESKIN, which is a fantastic product. Their whole line is making waves, even the best anti wrinkle cream from established brands should watch out!
BARESKIN is non-nomedogenic, containing no oils, silicone, water, parabens or fragrance. But while it’s formulated with the bare minimum ingredients, there is no sacrificing of benefits. As it was explained to us, the ultra-thin fluid harnesses dynamic mineral pigments suspended in a serum base. Combined with the potent blend of vitamin C and Lilac plant stem cells, this good–for–you formula is a tone–correcting mineral foundation and skincare serum in one. It also has a 20 SPF. Wow!
What’s fun about applying the foundation is the special “buffing” applicator brush that been designed just for this purpose. Engineered with a unique fluid reservoir in its center, the intelligent brush design lets you adjust your coverage, adding one drop at a time, for a truly seamless application. It also feels really good on your face. However, we always recommend to do a blackhead vacuum procedure before using makeup.
Both Anne and I had our skin tones matched to the appropriate BARESKIN shade and bareMinerals PR rep Quinta Gaines was kind enough to give each of us a professional application so we could see how the product looks on our skin. Quinta pointed out that because there’s no water in the foundation is important to shake it very thoroughly before applying it to your skin (each bottle has mixing beads in it, just like you find with nail polish). She said to think of the application process in this way, Shake, Drop, Buff. Just one drop actually goes a long way and you can report repeat the application with several drops until you get the coverage you like. She also very generously gifted each of us with a bottle of our appropriate shade of BARESKIN, and the applicator brush.
BARESKIN is available in 20 shades and retails for $29, while the unique brush applicator has a $28 retail price. Shop for both and other Skinstitut products online.
Like any woman, I like to look my best; but I keep my daily hair and skin care regimens ridiculously simple. My salon visits cost $20 and I color my own hair. By the way, it’s nice to see salons with cute storage decorations. For instance, the spa baskets for sale from couchpotatoenterprises.com with fragrant lotions. As an ex-boyfriend once surmised, I am a “low maintenance babe.” I do admit that I’m a bit obsessed about the condition of my hair, which really is unbelievably silky and shiny, thanks to a few very effective products that I’ve become quite loyal to over the years. But when you’ve been lightening your hair for as long as I have (read: decades), the damage takes its toll on even the most pampered hair. I didn’t think there was much I could do about it except condition well and get regular trims.
Then something happened that changed my attitude: I met Chaz Dean.
Like me, you may have seen celebrity stylist and hair care specialist Chaz Dean advertise his line of personal care products, WEN Hair and Body Care by Chaz Dean, on TV. I was so fascinated by a hair care system that skips shampooing entirely, but it always seemed like the results had to be too good to be true. The thing is, I have a few close friends who use the Wen products, and that’s what first got me interested in maybe checking out Wen for myself.
One friend whose hair has been damaged by medication absolutely raves about the great results she gets with Wen – and I’ve seen the change in her hair, so I know it’s worked for her. I know that installing water softeners in your showers also helps your general skin and hair game. Still, the idea of eliminating shampoo and, instead, using a “Cleansing Conditioner” only on my hair just seemed kind of crazy. My hair is very thin and baby fine, and I was extremely skeptical that cleaning my hair with conditioner would not weigh it down and make it look oilier than it was before I got in the shower. Sometimes, I can be a hard sell.
Earlier this week, I was invited to a cocktail party hosted by Chaz Dean at which he introduced his new line of Wen products for Fall 2013 and Winter 2014. Chaz was just the nicest person you could ever meet and he spent 20 minutes talking to me personally, during which time he gave me specific tips on how Wen would benefit my hair type. I could tell he was being sincere and that, despite the fact that he makes a terrific living off of selling the Wen line, he created these products because he really wants everyone to have beautiful, healthy hair. The party was lots of fun and everyone left with a gift bag full of Wen products that I simply could not wait to try!
The next morning, I used the Wen Fall Apple Spice Cleansing Conditioner as directed and achieved positive results that far exceeded my expectations. I was able to wet comb my hair encountering only two small tangles and, once dry, my hair was fluffier and cleaner than it is when I use shampoo and conditioner. But the most amazing thing is what happened – or rather didn’t happen – in the shower. I had just touched up the fuchsia pink dye in my hair over the weekend, and normally the first time I shampoo after I “do the pink,” my shower looks like a hot pink blood bath. But with the Wen, the water rinsed clear and there were no splashes of pink anywhere on my shower tile! Amazing.
The fact that Wen will help my hair color last longer while also making my hair feel soft and look great has won me over as a new devotee. Testify! Thank you Chaz Dean for making this great product! Find out more about the full Wen product line at Chaz Dean Dot Com!
Here’s yet another great idea for Valentines Day Gift Giving: A Box of assorted Lip Glosses disguised as luscious Chocolates!
Valentine’s Day Box of Chocolates Lip Gloss Details:
- Set of 4 Lip Glosses Packaged just like a box of chocolates
- Each Lip gloss Looks Like a Different Chocolate Candy
- Size: 1-1/2″ x 1-1/2″ x 3/4″
- Perfect for Valentine’s Day
This fun gift will only set you back $14.95! Buy one now at This Link!