On Smelling Yummy...


One of my internet friends on the ListApp asked me what my favorite perfumes are. She thought I might be up on my boutique perfume game. (blush) Does urban outfitters count as boutique? What about Sephora? TBH like my taste in books, TV shows and nourishment I lean towards the sweeter stuff. The category known as gourmand, which was introduced in the 90s with Theiry Mugler's Angel. Noted for it's "edible or dessert-like" fragrance. I want to smell like a confection. Like someone baked me for a special occasion.  These sweet fragrance were basically introduced in the 90s. Child of the 90s that I am, I am bout it bout it. Hubs loves it too. Strangers stop me to smell me and tell me I smell good. I choose to take this as a compliment and not something creepy. I would like to be told I smell yummy. If I could just dip myself in chocolate I probably would.

Alas, I workout too much for that. So behold, my favorite fragrances.

Pistachio Brulee by Gourmand EDP 
The clear front runner right now in my perfume arsenal. OMG this stuff is so sweet and yummy. Like pistachio ice cream (my favorite) or marzipan princess cake. Somehow, despite it's nutty herbal sweetness it still manages to be light and airy, like the kind of dessert you could eat a whole bowl of.

Citrusy sweet and effervescent, like a mimosa. There's a tingle at the beginning but it fades away to fresh squeezed OJ.

Like warm skin soaked in banana boat and salt water with a hint of melted Popsicle. With a little bit of sweat but like, the kind you sweat when you've eaten nothing but watermelon.

A true vanilla this is not- heavy on that creme brûlée or vanilla pudding. Cooked vanilla and whipped cream and burnt sugar.



Invest in Grown Up Clothes







I am 32. Sometimes I forget that and I have to do the math in my head. Sometimes I say I'm older because I'm bad at math (or because sometimes I feel like I am 1,000 years old in my bones) but really I am 32. I don't know what this means anymore. Being 32 in the super high-tech world of skincare and make-up and botox and fillers and filters is as amorphous and undefined as any concept I've ever tried to wrap my head around. I can compare myself to celebrities who are 32 (but why would I want to?) or I could look at my friends who's ages I constantly get wrong. I often say, without any intention at humor, that we are probably the last generation who is visibly going to age at all. People laugh.

Then I see an 18 year old who looks like me, and I think - does she look old? Do I look young? Does it even matter? Ahhhhh.

Here's what I do know. I know now how to treat my skin and hair and body in such a way that I look better than I ever have. Or at least I like the way I look better. What's the difference? Does it even matter? Who cares?

Basically I don't know anything anymore and sometimes churning out content for this blog feels like the punishments of the god's for betraying them in ancient rome. Sometimes I just want to write: here are some pictures of me where I look pretty. Don't I? Tell me I do. Please?

Here's what I did/put on myself to make this appear in front of you. If you like it you should do it, too. If not, no pressure. You do you.

I'm not sure there is something new and revolutionary that I need to share with you everyday. These pants are from my last purge at my favorite vintage store. I walked in with a huge bag of stuff that I knew was good but never wear. I let it go. I got these amazing AG legging jean things as a trade. It felt great to shed that extra weight. I've had this silk shirt from Everlane for several years. I saw Sincerely Jules wear it and needed to have it. It doesn't look the same on me, but it's soft like butter on my skin. This is my Zara leather jacket that I basically wear all the time. I'm wearing that Armani foundation I gushed about. I should link to all the places I wrote about this stuff already but that feels like a lot of work. The sunglasses are from my endless supply at Shop Ditto. I bought this Rebecca Minkoff purse for my wedding. I tried to sell it once and was shocked by how little they were willing to give me for it. I'm so glad I kept it. There was a spread in this month's Glamour on frameless glasses and I thought why not, and swapped for them. Every single thing I put on my body has a story, and all of it is in this blog. I'm basically just stream of conscious typing right now. Please stop reading this. It's a lot of work to come up with exciting things to write about everyday, especially when I'm not even sure anybody reads it. I hope they do.

I hope that if you'd made it this far then my apathy is a lesson. Here are the lessons: we only get better with age (and by better I mean we like ourself better and who gives an eff what anybody else thinks?) I also hope you take away that silk feels amazing on your skin (in both fabric and foundation form) and that trendy things like frameless glasses should be rented and not bought.

See you tomorrow.
xo
Dena

A Brief (Fictional) History of the Bomber Jacket



A very famous pair of BFF models are laying by the pool in minimalist, black, strappy/wrap around bikinis with lots of cut outs. The brunette turns to the blonde. "I am feeling like so fat right now, I had 4 organic fair trade 70% cacao espresso beans and a whole Cashew Mylk. I need to get my sweat on right now."

"But, wait!" the blonde one exclaims, "There is still some prime belly tanning time, if we workout out our navels might not be the perfect toasted shade of caramel. What do we do?" <> "I know!" the lithesome brunette squeals - "Let's just wear sports bras and our leggings to the gym! That will be so green of us since it will be less laundry for the maid to wash!"

"You're a genius!" says the blonde.

So off they go to change from the tiny scraps of nylon into other, slightly larger scraps of nylon. "I just checked my phone and it's supposed to dip down to 69 degrees in LA tonight! I am going to freeze, after bootcamp." says the brunette. "Don't worry!" the blonde exclaims, "I have so many adorable cropped jackets to choose from."

And so they ravaged the closet. The leather moto was cropped and bulky, but didn't seem "sporty" enough. The denim jacket felt too 80s. Suddenly, while staring at her drawer full of chokers, the brunette had an epiphany. "What was that cool, kind of puffy jacket they wore a lot in the 90s? The one in all the hip hop songs, but not the tracksuits. The vaguely, militaristic ones?"

"Oh, the bomber. I remember those! I think they were called that because "bombing" referred to graffiti art and I studied up on my 90s history in order to be cool and dance well to rap music." sayeth the blonde.

And so each one found their own, slightly puffy, cropped and shiny bomber jacket. It worked perfectly with their leggings and sports bras - lending that "edgy, urban, model off duty" gestalt that they were craving and still allowing their toned midsections to constantly be pumping mood improving vitamin D into their blood streams.

The End.









Everlane Bomber Jacket (other options: Topshop | Urban Outfitters) | Nike Pro Classic Sports Bra + Gym Club Workout Bag | Retro Super Future Shades | Onzie Mesh Moto Leggings

Etude House Eyebrow Peel Off Tint


THE FINAL PRODUCT - ALL PEELED OFF 

Peel Off Eyebrow Tint is just another example of all things cool and functional coming from Korea and landing on our shores in a wave of awesome, fun-to-use, life-altering beauty loot. This time it's in the form of a weird sticky gel that you apply for 2 hours and then peel off - leaving behind plump, filled in brows that look surprisingly buffed up and luscious and last through several aggressive face washes!

Add this onto the list of peel-off things that bring me joy (Pore shrinking mask, Plumping/anti-aging mask, Peel off Lip Tint) and please enjoy the video below where I put them all on at once (plus a deep toning conditioner and my favorite faux tanner...)

After about two hours of putting stuff on and peeling it off (even a shower somewhere in there) I emerged looking plumped, pinked and polished... And it lasted even after I double cleansed with an oil cleansing balm and a sonic brush.

If thick, luscious brows are a goal, and the sweaty summer is freaking you out - I definitely recommend this heavy duty tint that promises to hold up to sunscreen, sweat and other beastly summer things. No makeup makeup. 



STEP 1: Deep conditioning hair , skin-purifying mask, and lip tinting.

STEP 2: Modeling, moisturizing and plumpling, brow tinting, and faux tanning.

STEP 3: Finished product.

And here's the superfast video!


And here's just the brow tint if you want to know about that in more detail :)



Timberlake for President






Custom for President shirt by We the Classy  (Check out her blog, it's bananas) 


I am for Hilary. I adore her. But this election is starting to feel like an SNL episode (this season has been amazing tho, right?) Real talk, I'm scared for a future in which Trump is president. I like Bernie, but I respect Hilary. I don't know who I would have a beer with, but I would trust Hilary to watch my house and my kids. If this election is about who I want to have a beer with then I have a whole new candidate in mind. JT, lets grab a beer. You can teach me how to dance. Our kids can be friends. Me & Jess will dominate you and Steve at Settlers. What do you think?

 P:S: Justin, your tribute to Prince for Rolling Stone was incredible.


What a Week of Daily Gradual Tanner Looks Like...





It's a great way to go from not so tan, to very tan without anybody knowing it's from a bottle. This is also the magical and single day every year where my hair air dries into something I actually want to wear in public without the liberal application of heat tools. Stars align. Pictures are taken. No new clothes were required in the taking of these pictures.

See a day by day breakdown here in this super cool list.


Olivia Palermo for Nordstrom Striped Bustier Top (worn here) | Levi's Cutoffs from Etsy | Everlane Tote (it looks better and better the more I use it!) | Raen Maude Glasses (most recently seen here and here) | Shampoo & Conditioner 

Hella Crafty Friendship Bracelet: Letters + Ball Chain DIY






I made all these bracelets except one (the silver bangle). I'm not 100% sure how I got the string, clasp bead situation to stay together or how durable it is, so I'm not going to go into extensive detail here, let's just say I found myself understanding why these ones are $44 and ripped all my fingernails off. Finished product, still a little imperfect (you can see the strings!) but at least I learned my lesson. On the other hand the ball chain bangles are so amazingly easy. Stacked, or individual they look pretty dope. I got 32 feet of the ball chain plus 100 endings for $12. It's as simple as buyig the ball chain, and buying the ball chain endings in the same size and cutting to the length you want. I wanted a superfine chain so the snap needed a little strength and maybe a buddy but theoretically it could be snap and go. With all things 90's coming back in a big way I see myself as being something of a vintage visionary here.

Find all the things you could ever need or want (ball chains, clasps, beads) on Etsy
Vintage Levi's Shorts + Vintage Straw Clutch (both also from Etsy) | Tied shirt  Brandy Melville

How to Break In Stiff or Vintage Denim with No Stretch







QUICK STEP REFERENCE:

1) Put on stiff denim. Go for a very snug, almost uncomfortable fit as they will stretch.
2) Fill a bathtub with very warm (but not hot) water.
3) Add a handful of salt and about half a bottle of vinegar. No need to be precious and measure. Stir.
4) Sit in the tub in your jeans for as long as you can stand it. It smells like a pickle jar but it's good for skin.
5) Get out of the tub and do some stretches.
6) Take off the jeans and lay them flat to dry.
7) Once dry, wash them again with soap and cold water. Some people also add conditioner to this step to add extra softness (I did not but I would use the cheapest one I could find and I did this spur of the moment, all I have is too expensive to experiment with like this.)
8) Tumble dry on the lowest heat setting possible.
9) Wear and enjoy!

Photo by BFF Zoe 

Not to be that girl but these jean shorts fit me amazing. When I got them (on sale) they were pants. Gorgeous, raw, stiff pants. Putting them on was a nightmare. Walking around in them a pain. I knew they would fit me like a glove someday, but how would I wear them enough to make that happen? How could I get through the pain of breaking them in.

Here's the thing. I am obsessed with an amazing pair of vintage shorts. There is something stiff denim does to the booty that denim mixed with stretchy material just can never do. I have been blessed once in my life with finding the perfect, already broken in pair but eventually they broke down so much that tiny, sharp plastic threads started poking out of the waste band and they became unbearable to wear. These jeans were so clearly the fresh and unbroken cousin of those beloved (now unwearable) rare and elusive vintage find. I could not part with them. So I hit the internet. Purveyor of all knowledge. Turns out not a lot of women write about breaking in jeans... But men do. So many men. I found everything from "run them over with a car" to "wear them a few hours everyday for a year until they form fit to your body." None of those suggestions appealed. Then I read an article about a vinegar bath. I would link to it here but I can't find it anymore. I wish I pinned it. I tried just wearing them but it was miserable. Chafing everywhere. So I decided to wing it. I would make my own vinegar bath. If it worked lives would be changed.

So I poured a bathtub. I dumped a generous handful of salt into the warm water. I dumped about a half a bottle of vinegar into the tub. I pulled on the jeans. I sat in the tub for an hour.

I wasn't worried about my sensitive skin because vinegar is actually great for it. I have used it to treat everything from folliculitis to sunburns. It was part fashion DIY, part skincare treatment. I read a magazine. I stayed in until the water got cold. I moved my body around. When I got out the but and thighs fit perfectly. Like they were custom sewn for me. Unfortunately the calves had gotten too stretched. I contemplated sewing them and then decided to lay them flat to dry then make a decision. I pulled them off and on again - smelling still delightfully like a pickle jar. FInally I caved and cut them into shorts. Then I sent them out for a "cold" wash (we don't have a washer dryer) and a low temp dry. When they came back they were the perfect amount of frayed and melted onto my body like butter. I will most likely never wash them again (but I will freeze them to kill bacteria and disinfect them, thank you internet.)

The proof of their perfect fit is in the little keyhole in my inner thighs. I am a big girl. If it weren't for my turnout my thighs would touch. They still do in some places. But my lean, spinner/dancer/bootcamp muscles create a little keyhole at the apex of my thigh. You can see them in yoga pants, but not jeans. Never jeans. Even my sprayed on jeggings. But in these jeans - these custom fitted to my body jeans - the little gap shows clear as day. Better than tailoring, it's like someone custom made them exactly for me.

Behold, the secret to breaking in stiff denim.


Mother Jeans | Everlane Tote | L'Academie Camisole | Converse | Blush Hat | Prada Stud Sunglasses | Lace Triangle Bra

The Perfect Rose Gold Barrette



Every Spring, the joke about florals rears it's meme-ey head. There are some things, fashion and otherwise, that are just cyclical. It's like the season itself has hardwired an appreciation for certain tropes into our aesthetic palette - whether it be purely visual (flowers!) or more functional. The latter can be no better encapsulated then trend for hair adornments in the Spring/Summer. Most likely stemming from the lush visual abundance of the fertile seasons, but also encapsulating the functionality of getting that damn hair out of my sweaty face. Every year it might be different (or not really - headbands, braids, crowns, clips, pins, bows - kind of all same same, no?) but come hot weather there will be magazine editorials dedicated to the art and science of keeping hair off of skin.

Behold my submission - the humble, sleek and utterly purrrfect barrette in the color du jour. I mean rose gold. Enough said.

JCrew Thin Metallic Blush Barrette ($10)

Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation Really is The Greatest Foundation of All Time


This photo was not edited, facetuned, filtered or otherwise altered in anyway!! Hazaaaa

This picture makes me feel vurrry grown up


I'm so annoyed with the freaking wind in this picture but my skin looks AH-mazing




I think I could write an epic poem about this foundation. The texture is perfection - luminous, silky, dewy and somehow also magically eliminates flaws while still looking like fresh, perfect skin. Looks amazing in person and in pictures. Blends seamlessly, with only a few drops needed to provide perfect coverage for the entire face. Available in 36 colors. I could probably link to a jillion articles that rank this as the best foundation of all time - not the least of which is a lifetime achievement award from this month's InStyle Beauty Awards and a mention in just about every article about the best photography foundations. But I think instead I will just let these photos do the talking. Lives. Up. To. The. Hype.

Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation | VersaSpa Faux Glow | Finders Keepers Jumpsuit | Bobbi Brown Highlighting Powder in Bronze Glow on Cheeks & Collarbone | Prtty Peashun Firming Body Lotion in Medium everywhere else | Wind courtesy of Nature

What the heck is a Lip Tint Peel? Testing Out The Semi-Perm Lip Tint That Will Become Your New Obsession


mid-tint, looks pretty cute, feels like rubber cement 


The lip tint peel is another ah-mazing import from the land of Asian beauty technology. How do they come up with this stuff? It's like they know what I need before I know I need it. 

A peel off mask for your lips, it also leaves behind a semi-permanent stain that's supposed to last for over 24 hours. Testers claim they applied it before bed and had color until they woke up two days later. I've never been particularly good about reapplying lipstick after my initial make-up face doing (unless I'm around other people who do it) but I am acutely aware that my lips have faded as I've aged and a little lip color goes a long way in brightening up my whole darn face. So I decided, "why not?" and $8/each later I had the tubes of my 7 year old dreams. 

I decided to try it in two different colors - Lovely Pink (the classic pink color) and Lovely Orange (Pinky Orange).  A lot of the reviews were about the orange color which people loved for it's "poppy" tint but I also know I like a pink lip better on myself. 


Here's how it works: 

1. Apply the tint pack along with the lip line. (Make sure not to pass over the lip line because it will stain your skin.)
2. Let it dry for 5 -10 minutes. Try not to touch or rub your lips until the tacky gloss feels dry. 

3. Peel off the tint pack from the edge to the center. 
4. Clear up the lip area with toner-soaked cotton pad and apply transparent lip gloss or lip balm to moisturize. 


The longer you leave it on the darker the tint is supposed to be. I left it on for about 7 minutes. 

In the video you'll see the lovely pink, but you may have seen the lovely orange if you follow me on snapchat. The orange color smells like asian peach gummies (think Hi-chew or haribo) and goes on like a very sticky lipgloss. I was scared with the semi-permanence but the applicator actually controlled the gel really well and it took about two seconds to apply. It felt super strange as it hardened and I found myself wanting really badly to touch it before the 5 minutes was up (I did accidentally close my mouth and felt a weird sensation pulling my lips apart.) Let's just say the wait time is not sexy... But I do love me a good peel. Literally anything you can peel off your face appeals to me. Get it? ahahahah. 

At the end of the 5 minutes, I peeled it off and the result was a very pretty reddish pinkish orangish stain that looked like I just ate a popsicle. Very summer friendly. It faded quickly and by the next morning was hardly noticeable. 

The pink color is a bright, true pink in person, but looks so flattering in these pictures. The smell is mellower than the first one, but still in the realm of fruity-chemical gummy. Like the inside of a Hello Kitty store or a Victoria's Secret body spray. I wouldn't wear it on purpose but I didn't mind it. It definitely does not look 100% natural, but I loved how it brightened my whole face (seen here with stretch concealer, bronzer, brow pencil and eyeliner) and lasted well throughout the day into a gorgeous pink stain. I washed my face several times during the day with the milky jelly cleanser and it had no visible impact on the color, so I'm not sure what made it fade.  I liked how it was a polished, "done" but still kind of natural look. 

If I was still young and cool and did things like "go to festivals" I would be super into this for that, but it also works well for me as a lazy person who works out a lot and has sworn off make-up while I sweat. It also seems like a great addition to any low-key beach vacation makeup routine. 






Review: Skin Inc Custom Blended Serum




I recently had a sleepover at one of my friend's houses. She is both beautifully honest and utterly wise. She is effortless, not because she thinks it's cool, but because she is too focused on saving the world to do otherwise. She also has a toddler, something I hope to have one day, but know in my heart will consume the energy I frivolously waste in other directions.

So there I was in her white living room with my bag of skincare. As we talked, I layered on paper thin layer after paper thin layer of product as she and her husband watched on. "You're going to need to hire a baby sitter while you do that every morning..." she quipped at me when I attempted to attack her face with my microcurrent device. Knowing the statement was intended completely without malice, and feeling charmingly teased, I agreed.

I know my routine is ridiculous.

I learned what I know about caring from my skin first and foremost from the women in my family. They also have an abundance of tubes and pots and solutions for every woe. They also have phenomenal skin. My mom has literally never had a pimple.

To me, a decadent indulgent skincare routine is not something alien. But neither am I lacking in self awareness. This level of effort is neither viable nor appealing to everyone.

Ask a beauty blogger what her version of heaven is and it would probably would not include some kind of custom concoction that hits all of our skin wants in one potent, effective, adorable package. Where is the fun in that? I cherish the 20 minutes a day (15 in the morning, 5 at night) that I spend loving my face. It makes me feel beautiful and cared for.  If you follow me on Snapchat you know that I could spend all day massaging layers of potions on my face and not run out of options. I have a box the size of desktop computer filled with products I alternate on an almost daily basis. They are all amazing. But there are so many of them.

I know that seeing my routine could be enough to put a normal, busy woman off the idea of skincare. This is not the way it needs to be for everyone. You don't need to do all this. You definitely don't need to waste your precious time staring at an overwhelming number of products and wondering such profound questions like: What order do I apply them in?

I also know that in the course of this blog I have been incredibly blessed to receive many of these products to try for free. I do not advocate for choosing skincare over food. The life of a beauty blogger is not for everyone, just like every product out on the market is not for everyone.

And that is the perfect lead in to this product.

Behold, the latest asian import - Skin Inc Custom-Blended Serum.  Take the quick, cute but incredibly detailed quiz and they will recommend a custom blend just for you. I love the rainbow colors that appear as you complete it. I love the sliding bars which feel so much more effective as a tool to answer than multiple choice or scale of 1 to whatever. This is robot skin wizard intelligence at it's finest. It's witchy.

I felt incredibly validated in my own beauty skills when the recommendations actually matched what I would recommend for myself. The ingredients were potent, natural picks that include familiar names I already seek out for myself. But again, I spend a lot of time on this stuff - you don't need to.

In the wake of rashfest 2016 new additions to my routine are all about soothing and calming my skin. I know that the skin's barrier is an incredibly important part of that equation. When pollution, dirt, dead skin cells and other ickies get past my skin's defenses - through cracked, dry gaps in the natural barrier - really bad things happen.

Licorice root has been clinically proven to help with eczema, psoriasis and inflammation. Adult acne is an inflammatory disease, like cancer or arthritis.. Plus I do in fact suffer from eczema. Hyaluronic acid is basically my all-star favorite ingredient of all time. It's also something our skin naturally produces. The small, topical molecules of HA draw and trap moisture in the skin - plumping it up immediately, while also helping to maintain a balanced moisture level that makes the texture appear smoother and more refined. Ceramides are the natural lipids (aka fat molecules) that make up a layer of our skin. Combining the three is like beefing up my skins shield, protecting it from the irritants and environmental factors that break it down and irritate it.





Included with the serum they sent me was a sample of the Pure Revival Peel, which is the most amazingly gentle, but effective peel I have ever tried. I geeked out when I massaged it in and felt little peels of skin come away onto my fingertips. Gross but SO satisfying. Unlike other peels my skin felt soft and refreshed after - not tingly, not over-stripped and with absolutely no stinging.

When I added this serum into my routine as part of the "treat" section (I group products into three categories: cleanse, treat, moisturize) I noticed a bounciness right away. My skin felt good, not only to touch but for me as the person who has to wear it.

At $90 this serum is not inexpensive - but knowing that it was a one stop powerhouse and could replace several other products could definitely help to ease some of the pain associated with the cost. Sephora is also quick to remind you that buying the oils individually would be about $225. Since you only need 3 tiny drops (try mixing it into your moisturizer to help spread it around) I can see this bottle lasting a long time. The Sunday Riley oils immediately came to mind in terms of smell, texture and ingredients when I first tested this,  but you would need to combine several of those (at $75-90 each) to get the same combination-skin treating effects. How do you choose? Apparently you don't have to.

Skin Inc also boasts impressive science to preserve the integrity of the molecules from oxidation and sun exposure that can weaken the effectiveness of the ingredients.

Best of all, (for some of you) this is a seriously streamlined option.

There just might be hope for me yet.




Navy Blue Leather Coat + Purse: A Vintage Love Story

You might recognize a lot of these articles of clothing from previous posts. I'm not even going to link to anything in this article. Not just because I am lazy (I am) but also because I don't think you should buy anything. In fact, I think you should do a KonMari cleanse and throw a bunch of stuff away. That way, that perfect striped linen shirt from zara circa 2010 will float up from where it was crumpled in the bottom of a drawer hidden under all that crap that doesn't fit you as well. It will unfurl it's perfectly striped, bright blue laced wings and fly onto your body, turning that vintage coach bag you got on Etsy before you got your husband into the perfect catchall. On top of it will layer perfectly and that freaking steal of a leather jacket . Behold in all it's perfection an outfit worthy of a few chic accessories. What is this outfit if not the ultimate base for those cute, perfect accessories you bought thinking - this will be the year where I am so complete all I will need is a cherry. I'm already the sartorial sundae. What shall we pair you with? Nude fedora? Ombre tassel? You've found the canvas with which to display how utterly timeless and also spot on for Spring 2016 you truly are. Spring 2016, meet your perfect outfit. You may recognize it because it was the same perfect outfit last year and will most likely be again in years future. Assuming, of course, that your owner can learn to freaking stand up straight. 

But alas perfect outfit, our friend is waiting in her perfect red truck - another perfection of vintage timelessness - and it is time for you to go out into the world. 




Review: VersaSpa Marine Algae Natural Faux Tanning Home Line





One of the perks of being a beauty blogger is when you find a brand you love and they love you back. The mutual lovefest I speak of today is with the VersaSpa tanning line (seen in the tantouring video and also here) which is just in time for my annual post on faux tanning. Hashtag one kind of cancer is enough.

Anyways, the kind folk at VersaSpa liked my posts so much they sent me over a giant box with their whole entire line - scrub/bodywash, gradual tanning body (and more for the face!), spray tan in a bottle and shimmering leg oil. I was in faux tanning heaven. What makes me love face moisturizer so much is also what I love about the whole line - the clean, almost non-existent smell, the light and creamy texture, the lack of parabens/gluten/other crap, and of course the natural looking tan.

I did a patch test (yes, I do those!) and when that worked out for me, I decided to jump in with both feet and slather myself in the entire line.

I started with the Body Wash and Exfoliator. I admit, I was confused about how it would work... Until I realized the ingenious tube holds both in different compartments, with two nozzles. You can have one, you can have both! Mind blown. The body wash is so light, scentless and very moisturizing. It also managed to get off this awkward shape on my chest where the stick-on bra I wore the night before a spray tan left a mark that nothing could remove. I tried scrubs, sonic cleansing brushes, oils, nada. One half hearted swipe with this and it was gone. Call me sold.

I followed it up with their light and silky primer. I love a good tanning primer because my dry skin sometimes gets a little weird with just faux tanner alone. It also had no smell, was light and absorbed right into my skin. I definitely noticed a difference when I applied the tanner.

SO, on the real stuff. On my legs I decided to try the DIY spray tanner aka Bronzing Mist.  I have never used a spray on myself before. I was scared. But fortunately this stuff has a hint of color - it allowed me to see where I was spraying (horribly) and then blend it in with the mitt afterwards. I think the spray is a little intense for me to DIY, but I bet my mom with her hairdresser's hands is going to love it. The color was gorgeous, and it dried super fast which was awesome.

The rest of my body got the gradual tanning body butter and it was just as creamy dreamy as the face version.

I still need to try the shimmering, tanning body oil.  I've been dying to try a version like this but reluctant to spring for the sephora brand (it's an instant bronzer and gives a dose of color - ideal if it works, horrifying if it goes wrong.) Since at this point I trusted the brand and their Marine Algae voodoo tanning magic I can't wait to test it out, but I am SO bronzed right now I don't need any more glow in my life. Well, that kind of glow. A girl can really never have too much glow.

This photo does a great job of showing the difference between the spray (on legs) and the gradual butter (on arms and chest) - also the soles of my feet are a mess today, yet another reason I am not coordinated enough for a spray. But whoa, it is dark and caramel and gorgeous... I am now rethinking my entire outfit for an event tomorrow... 

Find a Hat You Love & Wear It





The best piece of advice I have ever given myself. Well, to be fair my mother has always loved hats. And her skin is amazing. Let's call it genetics. When I realized I was sensitive to sunscreen, and horrible at reapplying, and also AGING, I knew something had to be done. Also, I love being outside, in the sun/shade but especially IN THE WATER. Sunscreen does not hold up. What's a girl to do? Bring her own shade. Her own chic, stylish shade. And so, I became a hat person too. My skin is very grateful.

This is the latest addition to my retinue, I could not resist the blush color (or the fact that it's on sale!)

WEARING: Club Monaco Hat Attack Blush Felt Fedora | Raen Maude Glasses | My Favorite Soft & Comfy $20 Dress (I'm wearing a large)

ON FACE: Glossier Stretch Concealer (in medium) | Generation G Lip stain in Like | Bare Minerals Complexion Rescue Tinted Hydrating Gel Cream