Friday, April 18, 2014

Hair Love: Phytocitrus

OK.  So, remember when I told you guys about me going to the store and re-upping on my beloved Phytojoba shampoo?  Well, when I got home, I was going through some stuff and just happened to come across sample packets of another poo and con duo from Phyto.  Now you know me and curiosity: once it takes hold, it's hard for me to shake it.  The conditioner had since coagulated and dried out, but the shampoo sample was still viable... so on my head it went.  And up swelled my love for yet another Phyto product.  It's a veritable bottle of sunshine for dull and fatigued tresses called Phytocitrus Color Protect Radiance Shampoo and it is ab fab!

Phytocitrus is a luxurious elixir specifically formulated to address the needs of color-treated and/or chemically processed hair.  In addition to sweet almond proteins for gentle cleansing, it is infused with grapefruit extract and sea buckthorn - a dynamic pairing that works to seal the cuticle to impart shine while locking in color to prevent premature fading.  And let me tell you... I can definitely testify to the former as my chemically-treated locks had incredible shine after bathing in it.  It has a delicate scent of citrus, but it's extremely light and doesn't linger post-wash.

Phytocitrus has a much thicker consistency compared to Phytojoba's runnier, milk-like formula.  Also, its bottle came equipped with a flip top lid and slightly narrower opening than my Phytojoba's all-access, screw-off top, easily affording the user a bit more control of the product.  But guess what?  I love them both!  Both have left my hair looking healthy and feeling pampered, so what's not to love? 

Phyto has hit it out the park with these two, but I'm really not surprised.  Maintaining a stable of stellar products seems to be the status quo for them, which leaves me anxiously chomping at the bit to try yet another goody from their ever-impressive lineup of haircare goodies.

Phyto Phytocitrus Color Protect Radiance Shampoo is available at select salons as well as Sephora, and retails for $19.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Mood Lighting

This was not even on my radar.  I was actually in pursuit of a different shade, but defaulted to buying this one (the last of two shades in-stock) after finding out my preferred wasn't available.  My in-store swatches are what compelled me to snag it, but I knew the true litmus would come later after a thorough examination under proper lighting.  And now that I've gotten it home for a more in-depth viewing, I am even more elated with my surrogate purchase.  So, if you don't mind hearing me gush for a few over my latest find, I'd love to share with you my thoughts on Hourglass' blush in Mood Exposure.

Mood Exposure is a marbled pink-plum.  It is from Hourglass' lineup of Ambient Lighting Blushes, which pairs a selection of their Ambient Lighting finishing powders with a soft-hued blush for a soft-focus, multidimensional finish on the cheeks.  In lieu of a stark streak of color, what is achieved is a diffused deposit of tinted light wherever the blush is applied.  Finely milled and supremely soft to the touch, it comes housed in a gold toned, mirrored compact with a simple snap closure and small mirror inside.

Mood Exposure full swatch (L), Blended out (R)

Did I already express how happy I am to have this blush in my collection?  Seriously, guys -  I think this blush is just awesome and will effectively illuminate a whole host of complexions and skin tones.  Oh, and the one that I originally wanted I ended up ordering online, so I'll be yammering away about that one, too, pretty soon.  But until then, I'll be basking in the glow of Mood Exposure.

You know how every movie/TV hero has his own theme music?  Well, now every heroine can have her very own "theme lighting" with these Ambient Lighting Blushes in tow.  Effortless radiance without the visual cacophony of glitter, shine and sparkle, combined with a complement of color... all in the convenience of one compact.  That's quite a combo that's bound to improve anyone's mood, let alone their complexion.  And if you find that you're in need of a little "mood lighting" yourself, I think you should definitely check out one of these blushes and see how it works for you!

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Mood Exposure is available at Sephora and retails for $35.

Monday, April 14, 2014

All About Black Honey

Hey, guys!  How was everybody's weekend?  Mine was a bit tiresome, but cool.  I did allot a fair amount of time to playing with some more of my spoils from my recent trip to Sephora and I have to say that I am very pleased thus far.  So you know what that means: a little more showin' and a little more tellin' as I am anxious to spill the beans on a luxe minx of a shadow whose name just drips off the lips when spoken.  It's a sweet topping for the eyes from Clinique called Black Honey.

(Top of compact)

(Bottom of compact)

Black Honey is a bronzey, cherry-cola brown from Clinique's All About Shadow lineup of ophthalmologist tested/sensitive eye approved shadows.  It comes in a mirrored-top compact, complete with sponge-tip applicator and mini-mirror inside.  Its clear underside, along with the simple placement of the shade's name in the bottom corner of the window, allows for an unencumbered view of the product nestled within.  Super smooth and highly pigmented, Black Honey offered up oodles of opaque goodness in every swipe and has a gorgeous, pearl finish to boot!

Oh, the plans I have for this one!  Smoky eye?  No doubt!  Simple, daytime eye-dressing?  No problem!  A stream of color along the bottom lash line?  No sweat!  I mean, there's no stopping the endless possibilities of this versatile, ├╝ber-flattering shade of pretty!  It is ab fab in every single way imaginable and I'm so happy to have snagged it.  Just add this to the ever-growing "win" column for me, y'all...

And if your interest in this shade has been piqued even a tad then I think you ought to take the time to lay your own peepers on it and check it out for yourself!

Clinique All About Shadow Black Honey is available at Macy's, Nordstrom and Sephora, and retails for $15. 

Friday, April 11, 2014

Orange Is the New Red

OMG, I am so excited about this one, guys!  OK, so if you read my post earlier this week then you know about my weekend quest to nab some items from my local Sephora during their 15% off sale.  Well, it's time for a little show 'n' tell and, boy, do I have a beauty to show you and tell you all about!  It's a zippy lippy that's clearly not for the meek or timid and, therefore, right up my alley!  So, without further ado, please allow me to introduce you to my latest lip-oriented acquisition: Make Up For Ever's Rouge Artist Intense #40.

#40 is a vibrant, carrot orange from MUFE's Rouge Artist Intense lineup of lipsticks - a lineup that boasts 50% more pigment than traditional lipstick, packing each tube with a cornucopia of richly hued, long-lasting color.  And not only was #40 unyielding in its delivery of boldness and opacity, but it stayed put on my lips all day, even after eating!  Seriously, no major fading on me whatsoever.  It applied smoothly, too, and has a satin finish.

I was determined to get this lipstick when I initially saw it online and do you know that it ended up being the last one in the store?  YES, the very last box in the MUFE display!  Call it kismet, karma or however you want to put it, but my name was already written all over it so was meant to be.  And now it's mine, aaaallll mine!  Muahahahaha!

So, who's a happy girl?  Me, Dolce, that's who!  And I can't wait to start rockin' this all through the spring and into the summer... and prolly through most of the winter, too.  You know me, I have no allegiance to seasonal dictates when it comes to color.  I'm loving this shade of orange and will be rockin' it until its proverbial wheels fall off!

Make Up For Ever Rouge Artist Intense #40 is available at Sephora and retails for $20.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Colored Pencils: Red and Purple Lips

I think my search for lip pencils to complete my collection is finally coming to a close.  I may add one or two more to the bunch, but with the addition of a new purple, a red and a wine, I think I already have a wide enough assortment of colors to carry me through a variety of desired looks.  So if you guys have a moment or two to spare, I'd love to chit-chat and share my latest finds with you.

First up is a plummy, deep bordeaux from Wet 'n' Wild called Plumberry.  It is richly pigmented and works perfectly alone or paired with a wine lippy to create a vamp-worthy, dark pout.  On a balm-prepped lip, it applied evenly and without tugging.  It has a matte finish.

Next up is a warm, valentine red from Prestige called Amore.  I've been looking for a nice red that wasn't too cool and/or blue-based for awhile and I'm so glad that I finally got my hands on this one.  It applies very smoothly on the lips and deposits a potent amount of pigment in every stroke.  It wore well on me for hours (tested by itself with only a dab of Vaseline on top) and has a matte finish.

And to round out my trio of acquired treasures is a high-voltage violet from MAC called Magenta.  MAC describes it as a "vivid, pinkish purple".  I describe it as "Wow!" as it is an unabashed eye-catcher as well as a dutiful lip-enhancer, propelling the lips to a whole other level of purple with the rich dose of color it leaves behind.  And it's infused with a pink iridescence to boot.  All of which sounds like a win-win-WIN in my book!

L to R: Plumberry, Amore, Magenta

So, there you have it!  Again, I may add one more to the pile, but I believe I have most of my bases covered when it comes to coloring my lips.  And while it was quick and easy finding some of the shades, long and arduous was the journey trying to hunt down some of the others because of my finickiness... but it was so worth it.  And with all the happiness a little girl can muster, I'm ready to pull out my colored pencils and play until my heart's content.

Wet 'n' Wild Plumberry and Prestige Amore are available at various drugstores while MAC Magenta is available at Macy's and MAC boutiques.  The lip pencils retail for 99¢, $5 and $15, respectively.