Friday, January 30, 2015

Makeup Removers by Yves Rocher

It is common knowledge that washing off the makeup before going to sleep  is important, considering the makeup routine. If you care about your face skin, you should never skip removing all the layers of colored cosmetics/cleansing it, even if you are really tired and sleepy.
What I like about the cosmetics by Yves Rocher is that they contain botanical ingredients. Since my face is rather picky, the more natural a face care product is, the more likely my face skin and eyes  tolerate it too.

1. Gentle Makeup Remover Sensitive Eyes
This liquid remover contains centaurea cyanus flower water. Centaurea cyanus is also known as a 'cornflower'. Among others, the flower has gentle antiseptic properties. 
The Gentle Remover is paraben free and it is really very delicate to the eyes - it does not sting and washes off the eye and under-eye makeup quite well. It is efficient too - no need to use a lot of it to make it work. Despite using waterproof mascara, I have no problems with cleansing the eyelashes using this cornflower based remover.
From the manufacturer: 'Formula tested under ophtalmological supervision.'

Regular price* = $5.50

You can read more about centaurea cyanus (cornflower)  here.

2. Hydra Vegetal Refreshing Gel Cleanser contains hamamelis virginiana (American witch-hazel) flower water and sugar maple extract. The first one has soothing, antiseptic and anti-inflammation properties. The latter one helps to capture moisture within skin layers.
This soap-free gel is quite gentle to the skin, does not dry it out and removes the makeup rather easily. What is more, it is effective too. However, as usual, while removing the makeup (even though I do not wear much powder/foundation etc.),  I need to rinse my face with water really well to get rid of all the makeup stuff.
From the manufacturer: 'For Normal to Combination Skin. Formula tested under dermatological supervision.'

Regular price* = $14

You can read more about Witch-Hazel here.

3. Pure Calmille Gentle Alcohol-Free Toner
I use use this toner  not only during my morning and evening cleansing routine but also during the daytime, to refresh the skin. Since it does not contain alcohol, it can also be used around the eye area. It gently tones, soothes and cleans the skin. I very much like the product, it has a pleasant and delicate camomile scent due to its ingredients:
  • anthemis nobilis (Roman Chamomile) flower extract - moisturizer and skin cleanser;
  • pure organic chamomile flower extract. 
Currently the toner is not available at the Yves Rocher US online store, so I am not able to inform you how much it actually costs. Anyway, other, similar items from Pure Calmille series are 12 USD.

Chamomile is known from its soothing and anti-bacterial properties. Read more about this plant here.

* Yves Rocher online stores (including YR USA) often offer special discounts (up to 50%), so it is possible to get the makeup removers (and other cosmetics by Yves Rocher) at much better prices than mentioned in this post.
Another advantage is that they also present customers with free gifts: cosmetics (regular and sample sizes) and other useful items. I have been using their products for quite a long time - within all those years I have been presented with many interesting things (including pieces of clothing, accessories and  more). Instead of  a free product, you can also request planting a tree/trees on your behalf, which is part of the 'Plant for the Planet' program run by Yves Rocher.

From the manufacturer: ' Through one of our programs, Plant for the Planet, we will plant 50 million trees by 2015!'

When in Europe - they also have special promotions in local stationary shops. I have not found any places like that in the US so far, but I am really glad Yves Rocher have an online store here.

One of the free gifts I have received from Yves Rocher recently

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Instead of New Year's Resolutions And How To Stay Active

There was no tradition of making New Year's resolutions where I grew up. We did celebrate New Year's Eve and had parties of course but since at that time everyday life was  quite difficult and unpredictable, maybe that was why planning such things like eg: 'I am going to get more sporty' would have been quite irrelevant. Everybody was exercising themselves being busy with adjusting to current circumstances and trying to make the most of every coming day.
I guess it all made me more flexible. Maybe that is also a reason why I see no point in making resolutions. When I want to change or work on something, I do not wait till the next year comes. I try to do it whenever it is possible, on a constant basis.
One of these things is all which I call 'move yourself' - from moving around the home while doing all the housework, up to different forms of exercising. It may be, for example: gardening (if you have a garden), walking your dog (if you have a dog), dancing (if you like it), going to a gym (if you are a gym kind of person) or any other sports activity which requires moving yourself from a sofa or getting out of the car.

I like walking. Unfortunately, most of us (including myself)  tend to sit too often and too long, so it is good for our bodies if we can do something to be fitter.

Nice walking area in Fredericksburg.
When it is too hot or too cold to walk outside, a mall can be a good place to practice walking. It can be fun if you have someone to walk with - you can chat, watch nice things and look for bargains at the same time. However, if it is to be a sporting activity, done frequently, it is better to do window shopping only, instead of exercising our wallet again and again.

With Krystyna - a very best friend of mine -  we did thousands kms together, walking here and there...
I enjoyed our walks a lot
If walking is not possible for you, you can join a group of your interest or take part in social activities organized by your church. My mum took up computer classes and started learning a foreign language when she was in her late seventies. It is never too late to broaden our horizons! And quit saying - it is not for me. You do not have to be a professional painter to start painting or drawing. The point is, you can try creating positive things, be among/with other people (or on your own if you prefer it) and enjoy it.
I have always liked being creative and making something nice and useful. It is quite a different way of ' moving myself' though. Anyway, so far I have tried creating things doing:
  • embroidery - ages ago;
  • crocheting - I tried it and made a few things but I did not like it, so my crocheting career did not last long;
  • knitting - while making sweaters: the more patterns or colors - the more fun I had doing it;
    One of my sweater creations - actually this long sweater is more like a dress
  • sewing - making clothes and hats for myself was real fun (if I still had my sewing machine, probably I would post more on clothing);
    A blouse made by myself
  • DIY home redecorating - the results were always very enjoyable;
  • 'computing' - computer and Internet projects;
  • baking and cooking.
Some people tend to complain that life is boring. There are so many interesting things to do (also when you are at home) and so many places worth visiting - museums, art galleries, botanic gardens and more!

Wishing you all a very best year!

Christmas walk

Thursday, January 22, 2015

In Red

Despite many trends in makeup, which come and go, change so often - almost every season, red lipstick and red nail polish have always been in. An intense red shade adds a touch of glamor to an evening image and enchantingly complements an elegant outfit. That is why it is good to have 'something in red' in our beauty/makeup collection.
My current choice is a Grand Rouge moisturizing lipstick by Yves Rocher which contains camellia oil, vitamin E and organic sesame oil. Thanks to the creamy texture, it is really smooth and covers the lips evenly. Another positive feature: the red lipstick stays on the lips long, I do not need to reapply it again and again. I got this lipstick as a free gift when I ordered some other cosmetics from the Yves Rocher store - a great and very useful present (regular price = $16)!

A lipstick shade looks better on the lips when they are defined by a lip pencil. It enhances the color of the lips/lipstick. More over, a good lip liner is also supposed to prevent  a lipstick layer from bleeding.
I like the color of the Red Love lip pencil by Oriflame. The deep red looks gorgeous on the lips, and the tip of the pencil is very soft. It is easy to 'paint' all the lips red. However, a disadvantage is that during eating/drinking, the lip liner smears beyond the lip line and messes up the look. It is not a perfect lip defining tool but I like its shade, that is why I have kept it.
A better, and not that totally soft lip liner, is Long Wear Lip Definer (4240 Berry) by Oriflame also. This self-sharpening liner matches matches my red lipstick well, is soft enough to define the lips and does not bleed at all.

A red nail polish complements our evening chic appearance.

Revlon Sheer Nail Enamel

The Red (Revlon Sheer Nail Enamel) by Revlon, in my opinion,  is truly great. An intense red tone, the nail polish smooth application is nice and easy. It gets dry on the nails quite quickly, does not chip and lasts long (usually about a week time, at least five/six days), even when I do all the regular everyday washing and cleaning at home.

In Red in practice. Happy New Year!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Eye Makeup: Glittery Glitter

I am a great fun of these glittery, nicely pigmented  eye shadows by Sephora. Each of them contains tiny, glittery, star like particles which add the sparkling light to the makeup. They are long lasting, paraben free and 'eye friendly' - the shimmery and pearly pigments do not irritate my eyes. What's more, they simply give a flawless and pretty look.
I have had these eye shadows for some time (I decorated them with the two flowers to cover some obvious spots which appear when an eye shadow disappears) and I have been using them in various combinations - blending all the three shades or adding another one of a different brand. The white eye shadow works great as a highlighter too.
Although Tender Pink and Tango Night are no longer available in the current Sephora Collection (and Wedding Day is marked as No. 67 now), there are still other, also similar colors, on offer.

The blue lagoon eye shadow by Clinique complements the above colors, eg. used to crease, as the shimmery factor is much lighter and more delicate than the one in the glittery shades described above. What is important, the eye shadow is suitable for very sensitive eyes. Well, I find it quite beautiful and it looks lovely when used on its own as well. The Lagoon is part of  'All About Shadow Single' collection which includes Soft Matte, Soft Shimmer and Super Shimmer colors.

3W Lagoon - Soft Shimmer - by Clinique

Another slightly glittery product is the eye and cheek luminizer by Sephora. This little thing adds some twinkling magic to the makeup when I use all mat shades. It gives sheer, almost transparent coverage so it can be applied on any matte shade or on 'naked' face/ eyelids. It is also paraben free so my skin and eyes like it too. I was hesitating whether to by this luminizer or not as it was not cheap. I am glad I finally decided to purchase it - since I use only a little while applying it, it will last long. Besides, the shade has already been discontinued.

And now the eye liner - to complete the eye makeup. It has no stardust or shimmery ingredients but the bright blue color by Oriflame defines the eye in a grand but also cute way. In my opinion, it is a good quality product - its texture allows to draw precise, thin and thicker lines, it does not smear and stays on the eyelids long.

Finally, if you feel like adding a glowing, golden touch to the eye, you can decorate the eyelashes with this Shimmer Tips mascara by Avon (after applying a regular black mascara to the entire eyelashes). I bought it some time ago, when it was available, but I do not use it very often. Actually, I have never tried it with the all glittery eyeshadow makeup. Certainly it is not a part of my everyday look but it can add some fun to the carnival or party image.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Face care: Thermal Water by Vichy

The  Thermal Water by Vichy is quite amazing. It contains fifteen minerals, which are  vital considering the skin needs, including calcium, iron,  magnesium, potassium, silicon and manganese.
What is important, it does not make my skin dry/'shrink' as the tap water does.  Just the opposite - it pleasantly refreshes, soothes and protects the skin as well.
I bought it some time ago with the thought of the summer weather conditions. I considered I could use it as a cooling aid on a hot day. And yes! The thermal mist sprayed on the face helped a lot and brought a wonderful relief during the steamy season! I carried it in my bag and used it when the humid weather was difficult to bear with. Meaning often. Although, due to high temperatures, the cooling and refreshing effect was only temporary, it made a great and enjoyable change when outside.

Recently, since the winter cold fronts from the north have made us have the heating on most of the time, making the air inside + my skin dry, I reminded myself about the thermal water which I had in a closet. The misty spray works well as an instant moisturizing aid too - as good in the winter and as it was in the summer.
Actually, it is supposed to be used as a daily face skin cleansing routine treat, regardless of the season: applied mornings and evenings before using a nourishing/moisturizing cream.

From the manufacturer: the Thermal Water is hypoallergenic, tested under dermatological supervision and suitable for sensitive skin.

A great face skin treat.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Love From First Scent: Baby Doll by YSL

Some women tend to wear one scent mostly and make it a kind of their 'trade mark'. My nose would find it very boring! The world of perfumes is so full of various aromas, their compounds - so many to discover and enjoy! Of course, what we like depends on our personal preferences.
A pleasant scent can add beauty to an ordinary day and special moments as well. One of them is Baby Doll by Yves Saint Laurent - a fruity and floral, elegant fragrance. According to, the perfume was created by Cecile Matton and Ralf Schwieger in 1999. The cute, glass bottle in the shape of a spinning top was designed by Saint Gobain.
The main Baby Doll's aroma notes include: grapefruit, redcurrant, peach, freesia and cedar.
The fragrance is delicate and - oh - so fresh! It is light enough to be worn during a day, also at work.

I simply love it.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Eye Care: Eye Gels

Today something about the treatment of the delicate (and thin) skin under and around the eyes.
1. Eye Contour Gel by Clarins
This gel, meant both for eyelids and under-eye area, reduces puffiness and dark circles. It is really great as it is very gentle and effective as well. The skin absorbs it quite quickly and the gel formula  does not cause any irritations. Besides, it can be used as a makeup base and applied on the makeup also. I have used it to refresh the under-eye makeup area during the daytime, when I felt some drying discomfort - it worked really fine - the gel rested the skin and did not ruin the makeup.
The Eye Contour gel contains:
  • Concentrated Rose Water - the water does magic to the skin: soothes, softens and makes it look better;
  • Palmetto - refreshing properties.
The eye gel is really worth its price as I am not allergic to it and it invigorates the skin effectively. 

2. Under-Eye Gel Treatment by Sudden Change
This gel wakes up my under-eye area. It also helps to diminish the puffiness and brighten the dark circles. The Under Eye-Gel Treatment relaxes the skin and smooths thin lines. It is a bit thicker than the gel described above.
The product contains:
  • Arnica extract - reduces swelling/puffiness;
  • Haloxyl - anti-anging agent, improves the dark circles appearance.
All in all it works quite fine. Unfortunately, only part of my face enjoys this under-eye gel treatment. The other part cannot stand it as some of the gel ingredients  trigger my allergy. It is a pity because the price of the eye gel (around $9) is quite an advantage. Anyway, I still use this product from time to time but, due to my allergy, I will not buy it again.

Both gels are quite good (besides the allergy thing). However, since my skin is a bit dry, it requires something more than a gel only to hydrate it well enough. That is why an under-eye moisturizing cream is also needed (applied some time after using a gel).

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Eye Makeup: Everyday Look

Eye makeup and makeup, in general, has always been to me what painting on canvas may be to others. A way of expressing myself, yes, but also the fun of playing with colors. Although I appreciate the 'nude look', I have always been more on the 'luminous look' side: bright shades and colorful liners. Why should I wear dull and one-tone eyeshadows only if the world (and the world of makeup) is full of colors! Which does not mean looking ridiculous as I do adjust (at least I try) the makeup style to everyday life circumstances and occasions. Another thing is, that due to my complexion and beauty type, dark shades on my face make me look sick and sad. It all results in quite a delicate but still bright eye makeup.

Here is one of its options:

1. Eyeshadows:
a) white - in the inner eye corner and in the eyebrow arch;
b) shimmery golden-beige - on the eyelid;

Eye shadow from Eyeshadow Palette by Yves Rocher
c) light pink - crease;
d) light blue - outer eye corner and more or less 2/3 line along the lower eyelashes line;

Both eye shadows from Profusion Cosmetics Eyeshadow Palette
 e) eye pencil - a line along upper eyelashes line

Waterproof eye pencil by Miss Claire - the liner is quite well pigmented, smooth and creamy and does not smear

g) black mascara
The light shades create a soft, bright look.

2. Lips
a) for 'bolder' look: a pink lip pencil eg: the one by Estee Lauder described here + a vivid pink lipstick ( Vivid Impact Lipcolor, 08 Sweet Tart by Max Factor - intense and saturated color) ;

b) for softer look: a nude beige lip liner by Oriflame (self-sharpening liner, really soft, shapes lips nicely) + Luminelle Lipstick (Chestnut) by Yves Rocher.
The Chestnut lipstick's texture is creamy and moisturizing. It makes the lips look smooth and gives a sheer glossy coverage.

Here - you can see 'me' in this bright makeup :). I do not color my eyebrows - they are naturally black.
Another option for the pink and blue look is quite simple (below) and I used to wear it more often in the past.
Pink and blue eye shadows, eye liner and mascara option.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Foundation for Winter by Yves Rocher

The cold and freezing temperatures have been reminding us that the winter started for good. Adjusting ourselves to the weather conditions, besides wearing proper clothing and boots, we also should remember that our face needs some protection too. Well, some may choose to wear a kind of hat which also covers the face but I do not think it would be convenient to wear it all day long. Besides, I am not sure whether it would help the skin. In the winter, the face skin exposed to the cold air outside and the warm air of the heating when in a building, tends to get dry (or at least drier than usual) or red. That is why using a moisturizer and wearing a 'winter' foundation may help.

The Comfort Cream Foundation by Yves Rocher does comfort my face when in the cold season. Its creamy, light and non-drying texture helps a lot not only because of its moisturizing properties (it contains safflower oil). The foundation also covers all the blemishes and reddish skin spots and gives a luminous, and flawless look to normal/dry skin. More over, it hydrates the skin so nicely and it does last all day. I have no problems with the smooth application of the foundation, even with using the fingers only.
The product's manufacturer informs that this cosmetic was tested under dermatological supervision - it does not clog skin pores /irritate my skin/eyes. I like the shape of the glass container too -  it allows to enjoy the foundation till its last drop.

Great face treatment in the wintertime

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Food: Pearl Chinese Restaurants

About a year ago we went to a Pearl Chinese restaurant for the first time. Actually, it was more a takeaway place than a restaurant. However, there were a few tables too, so you could sit and enjoy your meal. What we did, as the little place had a lot of really enjoyable items (for a very good price) on their menu. Great, tasty food including the best sweet and sour sauce in the world!
Each lunch special was served with rice and an egg roll. The meals were so big (too big for us) there that we simply shared a dish, and still had plenty of food for each of us.
These days, we are not able to go there too often - but when we happen to be around, it is always a pleasure to have a meal at that Pearl (they do not serve lunch on Sundays), also because the place is run by a very nice and kind lady whom we like too.
We have learned that the little Pearl place is part of the Pearl Chinese Restaurant chain as we found another, a bit bigger Pearl, somewhere else. With very tasty food again. The menu is quite similar to the one in the place described above, although here, the lunch price (besides the main dish) includes also a soup (three soups on the menu) + chips. Lunch specials are served Tuesdays/Sundays. What the two places also have in common is that they do not offer drink refills. But it is really worth stopping by and having a meal there.

Lunch menu items by a Pearl Chinese Restaurant.

 Encouraged by our positive experiences at the two Pearl food places, we also tried one in the South of TX. Our Pearl no. 3 was a real restaurant, considering its size. The menu they had was surprisingly different, meaning both the list of dishes and prices. Besides, the price of a 'plate' did not include rice and an egg roll - which at first was a bit disappointing - but the quality of the food was really rewarding. When we tasted the meals (plenty of food per person too!) we were served, all our prior doubts were gone. It was all really delicious.
So if you like Chinese food, when you happen to be by a Pearl Chinese Restaurant, simply give it a try. Hopefully, you will not be disappointed!

Friday, January 2, 2015

Body Care: Advanced Lubricating Skin Lotion by Perfect Purity

Recently, I have been constantly discovering the world of cosmetics by various (mostly) American  brands. This Skin Lotion by Perfect Purity is a surprisingly good buy. It is not only inexpensive (price=$1) but also quite good, considering its moisturizing properties. Although the texture of the lotion is light (it is really 'non-greasy & fast absorbing'), it moistens the dry skin well and I do not need to reapply the cosmetic to make it work better. The fragrance of the product is a kind of perfume like but luckily, it is not strong and practically, I can't smell it at all unless I place the top of the bottle close to my nose.
  • Petrolatum and Mineral Oil - soothing and healing properties.

  • Vitamin E - antioxidant properties.