Thursday, July 30, 2015

Empties Post Volume XXXIV: June and July 2015

Press Samples, Purchased by Me and Free Samples (Affiliate Links)

I used up so few products in the month of June that I consolidated June and July into a single Empties post. Sometimes when I am testing lots of different products, I find it difficult to finish up much of anything. I thought that I would have finished up more than 5 full size products, but at least I managed to finish up a fair number of samples.

1) Caress Fine Fragrance Love Forever Body Wash (reviewed here): Caress makes such great body products, and I really like this body wash a lot! Lovely lather, great scent, and it leaves my skin soft and moisturized. Definitely worth trying!

2) Trader Joe's Moisturizing Cream Shave in Honey Mango is a staple in our household, and my husband and I both use it! I buy them 3-4 at a time. This a creamy dreamy moisturizing shave cream that leaves skin soft and supple, and it smells absolutely delicious! I highly recommend it, and it's also so affordable!

3) Kiss My Face Active Life in Cucumber Green Tea is another staple for me. I always have this on hand, and will continue to buy it over and over again. It is so gentle on sensitive skin, and it isn't filled with unhealthy chemicals.

4) The Honest Company Honest Bar Soap in Hydrating Shea Butter Cleansing Bar (reviewed here): This is such a lovely moisturizing soap that leaves skin so soft. I have always been very impressed by the products from The Honest Company, and will definitely buy more of their Cleansing Bars in the future.

5) Shannon's Soaps Shaving Soap in Bergamot Mint (reviewed here): I absolutely love Shannon's Soaps– everything that they make is so wonderful. Their handcrafted soaps are so fantastic, and they work well for shaving as well. That said, their Shaving Soap is one of the best shaving products that I have ever used. The creamy lather is so moisturizing and emollient, and lends itself to the perfect close shave. It's great for men, but I use it on my legs and underarms and just love it!
6) Miller Harris Citron Citron Shower Gel: This was a lovely smelling citrus scented shower gel that not only did a great job cleaning my skin and leaving it soft.

7) The Honest Company Honest Hand Soap in Lavender (reviewed here): This smelled and felt so  good against the skin that I need to buy a full size bottle!

8) Essenza Luxury Hand Soap in French Lavender (featured here): This is an absolutely delectable smelling lavender hand soap. I used it down to the last drop, and thoroughly enjoyed every last bit!

9) L'Occitane Lait Corporel Body Lotion: I love L'Occitane lotions, and was happy with this little sample bottle. I'm not sure if this particular lotion is still being offered, but there are so many fantastic lotions to choose from them.

10) Herbal Essences Body Wash in Body Burst (featured here): The invigorating citrus scent was super refreshing for early morning showers. I'm not sure if I will purchase a full size bottle, but i did like the sample.

11) Moroccanoil Body Buff is a deliciously orange scented scrub that looks and feels a bit like orange marmalade! It leaves skin soft, beautifully exfoliated, and hydrated!

12) RADICAL Skincare Youth Infusion Serum is a light weight hydrating serum that lifts and plumps skin, and reduces the appearance of lines and wrinkles. I want a full size bottle!

13) Kiehl's Midnight Recovery Concentrate: I really like the way this made my skin feel, but the sample wasn't large enough for me to see any real effects, or to form a meaningful opinion..

14) TATCHA Radiant Deep Brightening Serum is a beautiful deeply moisturizing serum that leaves skin with an amazing luminosity and radiance. It makes skin look and feel amazing! I love to use it in conjunction with TATCHA Gold Camellia Beauty Oil (reviewed here).

15) Assorted sample packets and unmarked sample bottles: I actually find sample packets fairly useless because there is never enough product to be able to see whether it will work well for your skin. I often take them when I travel, but since they can't be resealed they are often more trouble than they are worth. I wish manufacturers would abandon these in favor of little tubes with lids.

What did you finish up, give away, throw out or return in June and July?

Press Samples, Purchased by Me and Free Samples (Affiliate Links)
Copyright © 2015 All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Lola's Secret Lipstick from Susan Thompson Cosmetics | Review

 Press Sample (Unaffiliated Links)

When my close friend, Suzi, founder and CEO of Susan Thompson Cosmetics, created a lipstick for me I was deeply honored. It is far from an everyday occurrence that someone, let alone a highly acclaimed celebrity makeup artist, creates a lipstick in your honor! When she handed me Lola's Secret she exclaimed that it was the perfect shade of pink for me. I would argue that it is simply the perfect shade of pink!

Lola's Secret Lipstick is a truly divine blue-based pink that is highly saturated and tremendously vibrant. It is a mid-tone shade that can be built up to maximum opacity and impact, or sheered out for a lovely wash of color. It is the quintessential grown-up pink that can be worn across a wide variety of skin tones, and it will appeal to people who love a bold lip or one that is far more subdued.

Lola's Secret boasts a creamy and moisturizing formula that effortlessly glides across the lips and deposits color evenly. It neither feathers, nor does it settle into lip lines, and it wears evenly. Lola's Secret has the perfect amount of cushion, and is very comfortable on the lips. It has a slight sheen, but I find that it has the longevity of a matte formula without the drying that often accompanies matte formulas. I get abut 4 hours of wear from a single application, but even longer when paired with a lip liner. It has a very faint vanilla scent that fades soon upon application, and therefore will not bother people who are sensitive to scent in their lip products.

Given that today is National Lipstick Day, I thought that it was especially appropriate to share Lola's Secret Lipstick with you!
Susan Thompson Cosmetics are:
Paraben Free
Allergy Tested
Fragrance Free
Not Tested on Animals
It has a complexity about it in that the color modulates in the light, and therefore has a chameleon-like quality. It can be worn as a simple wash of color that is barely there, or it can be built up to full unadulterated opacity. It is utter perfection, and the ultimate pink lip nirvana. Naturally, it is my favorite lipstick for the perfect pink pout, who am I trying to fool-- it is my favorite lipstick of all time!! At this rate of use I will finish the tube in record time!
Lola's Secret is an antioxidant rich formula packed with Vitamin E.
Left to Right: The first three swatches are applied with varied degrees of intensity tot illustrate its ability to be opaque and sheered out. The last two swatches compare this version of Lola's Secret (left) with the original formula (right; reviewed here). While the colors are nearly identical, the new formula is even more spectacular than the original.
     As you can see, Lola's Secret is a very wearable shade whether you prefer a bold or an understated lip. 
About Susan Thompson Cosmetics,

Susan Thompson Cosmetics originated as a makeup line developed for professional use in high fashion and entertainment.  The products are formulated to integrate light adjusting and soft focus particles to create flawless skin without fine lines, wrinkles and large pores.  All products are cruelty-free, paraben-free, hypo-allergenic and fragrance free.

Thompson is active in several charities including The Red Cross, ASPCA, and 10% of her earnings and profits from her makeup line are designated to charity.

Ingredients: Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Oleyl Oleate, Mica, Lanolin Oil, Octyldodecanol, Propylene Glycol Ricinoleate, Euphorbia Cerifera (Candelilla) Wax, Isopropyl Lanolate, Oleyl Alcohol, Lanolin, Ozokerite, Isodecyl Neopentanoate, Cetyl Ethylhexanoate, Cera Alba, Paraffin, Polybutene, Copernicia Cerifera (Carnauba) Wax, Methyl Glucose Sesquistearate, Silica, Lauroyl Lysine, Ethyl Palmitate (and) Tibehenin (and) Sorbitan Isostearate (and) Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Isodecyl Neopentanoate, Prunus Armeniaca ( Apricot) Kernel Oil, Vanillin, Butyl Stearate, Tocopherol, Ascorbyl Palmitate. May contain (+/-): CI 77891, CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499, CI 15850:1, CI 15850:2, CI 77200, CI 19140, CI 45410:2, CI 15985:1, CI 15850, CI 42090.

Overall Assessment: If you buy one pink lipstick this year, then it should be Lola's Secret! A+
Thank you, Suzi for making a very special lipstick named after my blog! xoxox, Helen

$25.00 for oz. from Susan Thompson Cosmetics (Unaffiliated Links).
Press Sample. All views expressed are categorically my own.
Copyright © 2015 All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015


PSA (Affiliate Links)
Are you shopping the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale? If so, what's on your list? 
Many items have been restocked! Prices go up August 3!
Chloé 'Marcie Leather Tote Sale $1268.90 After Sale $1895.00


PSA (Affiliate Links)

Monday, July 27, 2015

Susan Thompson Cosmetics Liquid Blush in Unrestricted | Review

Press Sample (Unaffiliated Links)

If you love liquid blushes, then you need to become familiar with Susan Thompson Cosmetics since they have created the best Liquid Blush to end all liquid blushes. Their gorgeous and complex shades can be worn separately, mixed together to customize the color, worn on the lips and eyes, or used on the body. These little beauties are tremendously versatile whether you are using them for everyday wear, HD or Red Camera Projects, or on the Runway. They were developed to effectively be applied in seconds which is crucial for the fast-paced makeup and wardrobe changes that are necessary backstage at fashion shows, for TV & Film, and for all other forms of production work. Furthermore, women on the go, students, and anyone fighting the clock to get out the door will appreciate that these blushes can be applied in no time at all, and that they can change an entire look with nearly no effort.

Susan's Liquid Blushes are far more natural looking than powder blushes– which is of great importance for HD and Red Camera Projects, but also more flattering for everyday wear. One of the most astounding characteristics of this formula is that it reactivates itself throughout the day through the warmth of the touch. All you need to do is rub the area with warm clean fingers– rendering reapplication unnecessary. One of the most remarkable things that I noticed is that these blushes neither settle into pores,  nor do they emphasize fine lines– both of which are traits that often occur with liquid and cream blushes.

Susan Thompson Liquid Blush in Unrestricted is a stunning complex berry with twinkling golden flecks. This lovely deepened berry shade may look intimidating, but trust me when I tell you that it sheers out to the most elegant natural glowing flush. It glides across the skin smoothly and effortlessly, and deposits color evenly. The finish is perfect every time whether you apply it with your fingers (my preferred method) or with a sponge applicator. As with all of the Susan Thompson Cosmetics Liquid Blushes, they are quite buildable if you prefer intense pigmentation.

According to Susan Thompson Cosmetics,

This ultra-blendable blush glides on so smooth and easy you may never go back. Light reflecting pigments will give you an all-day beautiful glow. Packaged in our conveniently light airless pump bottle so you can take it anywhere with no mess or fuss.
Directions: Apply 1/2-1 pump on apples of cheeks with clean fingertips or sponge applicator.

Tip: You can also use your liquid blush as cream eyeshadow. Apply with cream eyeshadow brush or clean fingertips and blend.
Susan Thompson Cosmetics are:
Paraben Free
Allergy Tested
Fragrance Free
Not Tested on Animals
 Unrestricted Left to Right: Heavy swatch, lightly blended and then sheered out.
Ingredients: Dimenthicone, Polysilicone-11, Isononyl Isononanoate, Pentaerythrityl Tetraisostearate, Isodecyl Neopentanoate, Talc, Lauroyl Lysine, Phenoxyethanl, Ethylhexylglycerin, [+/- (May Contain): Mica (77019), Bismuth Oxychloride (77163), Titanium Dioxide (77891), Iron Oxides (77491, 77492, 77499), Carmine (75470), Ultramarines (77007), Manganese Violet (77742), Red 6 (15850), Red 7 Lake (15850,1), Red 28 Lake (45410:2), Red 30 Lake (73601), Red 33 Lake (17200), Red 34 Lake (15880:1), Red 36 (12085), Yellow 5 Lake (19140:1), Yellow 6 Lake (15985:1), Blue 1 Lake (42090:2), Ferric Ferrocyanide (75510).
Overall Assessment: Exceptional quality, flawless finish, and a gorgeous color.

$25.00 for from Susan Thompson Cosmetics (Unaffiliated Links).
Press Sample. All views expressed are categorically my own.
Copyright © 2015 All Rights Reserved.

BBC Beauty Week in Review

  • Lola's Secret Beauty Blog: If you are a huge fan of BB Creams, then you really need to try L'OCCITANE Immortelle Precious BB Cream SPF 30! It's absolutely perfect for the summer!
  • TheFabZilla: Want or Need? TheFabZilla dissects Urban Decay Naked Smoky. You decide!
  • Color Me So Crazy: Mud, Mud and MORE MUD From Borghese.. Find Out Why I Fell In LOVE!
  • Beauty on the Bayou: ELF vs. SARA HAPP LIP SCRUB.
  • Painted Ladies: For nourished, healthy nails and cuticles, apply a healthy dose of Nail Butter regularly!
  • Advice Sisters Beauty Fashion & Lifestyle Blog: the Advice Sisters have reviewed the brand new I Am Juicy Couture fragrance.
  • Chameleon Stampede: Mandy tried Smashbox's best sellers and found some great little staples to keep in her bag.
  • I Know all the Words: The perfect Canadian red lip made easy with Smashbox + Flare + Donald Robertson Be Legendary Lipstick in Canadian Flare.
  • Beauty by Miss L: Does MAC False Lashes Extreme Black mascara really works as promised?
  • Fluttering Lashes: With summertime in full swing, stock up on the essential summer beauty buys!
  • Makeuprshutup: Is this a miracle cleanser? Stephanie puts it to the test...
  • Be Happy And Buy Polish: Ninja Polish Nebula is the sparkly glitter polish you've been looking for!
  • Endlessummer Blog: Save your hands and feet – enter Cheryl Lee MD Cracked Hands & Feet Kit giveaway!
  • Notes from My Dressing Table: Have you met the LUNA by FOREO? Erika's love for this innovative skin care device is deep and it is real!
  • Never Say Die Beauty: Although Allison is obsessed by the Tarina Tarantino packaging, she loves the Eye Dream Hypershadow & created her version of a smokey eye and FOTD.
  • Makeup Obsessed Mom: What does it take to get a brighter and healthier smile?
  • Sunday, July 26, 2015

    Susan Thompson Cosmetics Concealer Pot | Review

    Press Sample (Unaffiliated Links)

    Finding a good concealer has always been a bit of a challenge for me. They often crease, or they look unnatural, or they wear off far too quickly. There are some that have given me milia due to high concentrations of occlusives like petrolatum and mineral oil, and  others still that have dried out my delicate eye area. Furthermore, I am prone to dark circles when I don't get enough rest, and therefore I like for a concealer to offer buildable coverage for the times that I need more concealing, and that can be sheered out for the rest of the time that little concealment is indicated. My latest concealer discovery to have satisfied my wish-list of attributes was found in a humble little pot from Susan Thompson Cosmetics.

    Susan Thompson Cosmetics Concealer Pot in Light is a luxuriously silky smooth cream concealer that offers full opaque coverage, but that can easily be sheered out when less coverage is desired. It has a natural nearly matte finish that doesn't announce that you are wearing a concealer, as many do. It spreads across the skin with ease, without tugging, and doesn't settle into fine lines. It can be applied with a finger or with a synthetic brush, and both ways offer a perfect finish. I am able to get all day wear out of a single application, but it may also be set with a finishing powder to increase its staying power. Not only do I get the perfect natural finish with this concealer, but it neither irritates my eyes, nor does it ever give me milia. Rather than drying my skin out, I actually find that this concealer imparts  a bit of added moisture without being so emollient that it undermines its ability to adequately conceal.
    Susan Thompson products are:
    Paraben Free
    Allergy Tested
    Fragrance Free
    Not Tested on Animals

    Available in five shades: Fair, Light, Medium, Warm Tawny and Deep. Shown in Light.
    Ingredients: Isohexyl Caprate, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Nylon-12, Paraffin, Quartz, Octyldodecyl Stearate, Ozokerite, Cera Microcristallina, Isostearyl Behenate, Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Silica, PPG-12/SMDI Copolymer, Cera Carnauba, Retinyl Palmitate, Tocopherol. May contain (+/-): CI 77891, CI 77492, CI 77491, CI 77499, CI 77007.

    Swatches applied with a synthetic brush. The swatch on top was blended out and the bottom swatch was only partially blended.
    Overall Assessment: This is my go-to concealer. It gives me the coverage that I need whether or not I have dark circles, and it never gives me milia. I love the natural finish, and the fact that you can't tell that I am wearing a concealer. A+

    $28.00 for 0.21 oz. from Susan Thompson Cosmetics (Unaffiliated Links).
    Press Sample. All views expressed are categorically my own.
    Copyright © 2015 All Rights Reserved.

    Saturday, July 25, 2015

    Back to School: The Beauty Aisle Drugstore Picks

    Press Samples (Affiliate Links)

    Back to School shopping can be very expensive, and for those going off, or returning, to college these expenses can become rather daunting. Between the continual tuition hikes, the stratospheric cost of books, the mandatory health insurance (at least at my university), the exorbitant rents, and the high cost of food– most students have very little discretionary income left to buy incidentals.

    Given that I teach at a big university, I spend a lot of time with undergraduate and graduate students, and many of them tell me about their living conditions in the dorms, sorority houses, and in off-campus housing. Trust me when I tell you, that I am continually shocked by some of the goings on that they have to deal with while trying to get an undergraduate or advanced degree. They often live 6 or more deep in a 3 bedroom apartment sharing a single bathroom in order to be able to afford the high cost of housing. Given that so many have communal bathrooms and tight quarters, there is a natural tendency to end up sharing some beauty products (whether willingly or unwillingly). Therefore, in addition to selecting affordable makeup and body care products, I also sought out a few affordable, and larger sized, grooming products that could be left in the bathroom and shared amongst the roommates.

    With Fall Semester less than a month away, and Fall Quarter less than two months away, many college and university students are already beginning to shop for the new academic year. Here are a few drugstore picks to start out the new school year without breaking the budget.
    SOHO Disney Makeup Bags ($7.99-$11.99 at Walgreens): LONDON SOHO NEW YORK makes all sorts of super cute and affordable makeup bags, makeup brushes and makeup sponges that are embellished with Disney favorites. These are great for storing your makeup and other things that you don't want to leave in the bathroom, or share for sanitary reasons. They can easily be stowed in your room and will keep all of your daily go-to items at your fingertips.

    This summer, LONDON SOHO NEW YORK® teamed up with Walgreens to offer another dreamy Disney collection of cosmetic bags – this time featuring Ariel, Mulan and Pocahontas. Available exclusively at Walgreens, the Dare to Dream collection contains six new cosmetic bags that will keep you styled like a Disney Princess on your next adventure!

    This imaginative line including a weekender, organizer, clutch and round top purse kit is inspired by the ambitious spirits of these inspiring leading ladies. Known for durable, long-lasting and on-trend cosmetic bags, this latest collection blends these courageous characters and functional design to dare you to dream like a Disney Princess.
    SOHO Disney Belle Enchanted  Eyes 3 Piece Brush Set ($12.99 at Walgreens): This three piece brush set is all you really need to apply your daily eye makeup. The brushes are good quality, easy to use, highly effective, and they don't shed.

    Belle Enchanted Eyes Brush Set includes:
    • Medium Fluff Brush – Short round shape creates depth and detail.
    • Large Fluff Brush – Soft, fluffy bristles allow shadow to glide across eyelids with ease.
    • Flat Angled Liner Brush – Angled shape creates flawless lines and can be used with powder, gel or cream liner.
    Material: Nylon bristles

    SOHO Spellbound Beauty Sponge ($9.99 at Walgreens): Its unique shape works well with both liquid and cream foundations. The pointed end is perfectly suited for small spaces like the inner corner of eyes and nose, and the wide base is intended for all-over blending.

    Material: Non-latex sponge
    NYC New York Color HD Waterproof Automatic Eyeliner (Reviewed here. $2.00 each from Target, Walmart and CVS): These beautifully pigmented eyeliners are creamy and tug free, but once they set they are long-lasting and budge-proof. They are gorgeous and affordable, and well worth having.

    HD Automatic Eyeliner makes your dream eye look easy and speedy. This skinny pencil just twists up to reveal a perfect point that makes applying color a breeze. At the other end is a brilliant pro-style blending tool for customising your look.
    Top to Bottom: Turquoise, Navy Blue, Black and Dark Brown
    Wet n Wild Color Icon Eyeshadow Single in Nutty ($0.99 from and Walgreens): This is such a pretty golden taupe, and it has a lovely creamy texture that effortlessly glides across the lids and it deposits color evenly. For this price you can buy one for your roommate so that she doesn't use yours!

    High-pigmentation and pearl-density create a unique, satiny texture that lasts and lasts. A versatile collection of classic and trend shades can be easily worn alone or playfully combined for a variety of looks.
    Ingredients: Dimethicone, Talc, Aluminum Starch Octenylsuccinate, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Trimethylsiloxysilicate, Magnesium Stearate, Nylon-12, Caprylyl Glycol, Caprylhydroxamic Acid, Glycerin, Boron Nitride, Polyethylene, Silica Dimethyl Silylate, May Contain (+/-): Mica, Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Iron Oxides (CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499)
    COVERGIRL Intensify Me! Liquid Liner (Reviewed here. $8.99 from ULTA and This is one of my favorite liquid liners these days because the uniquely shaped paddle allows for the finest lines when turned on end, and because the flat side effortlessly achieves a bold and thick cat eye.

    Get the control of a pencil with the intensity of a liquid eyeliner for beautifully defined eyes every time with CoverGirl's Intensify Me! Liquid Liner. Their paddle-shaped tip gives you two looks in one - thick and dramatic or thin and elegant. The intense black formula glides on smoothly and dries quickly for instant drama.

    Ingredients: Aqua, Butylene Glycol, Styrene / Acrylates / Ammonium Methacrylate Copolymer, PEG-60 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Phenoxyethanol, Coco-Glucoside, Potassium Sorbate, Citric Acid, Sodium Laureth-12 Sulfate, Sodium Benzoate, Ammonium Hydroxide, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, CI 77266 (Nano).
    COVERGIRL The Super Sizer Mascara (Reviewed here. $7.49 from ULTA and This new COVERGIRL mascara lengthen and thickens lashes, and it is gentle enough not to bother even sensitive eyes like mine.

    The CoverGirl Super Sizer Mascara gives you 400% more volume for fuller lashes. Opthalmologically tested, suitable for those who wear contacts.

    Ingredients: Petroleum Distillates, Polyethylene, Disteardimonium Hectorite, Copernicia Cerifera (Carnauba) Wax, Trihydroxystearin, Propylene Carbonate, Tall Oil Acid, Pentaerythrityl Hydrogenated Rosinate, Phenoxyethanol, Propylparaben, Tocopheryl Acetate, Panthenol, May Contain: Iron Oxides.
    Note the difference in thickness between the flat side and the thin edge.
    Rimmel Lasting Finish 25 Foundation with Comfort Serum ($6.99-$7.99 for 1 oz. from TargetULTA, Walgreens and This is my new favorite drugstore foundation because it offers light to medium coverage with a very natural finish. My skin looks and feels hydrated, smooth and glowing. Rimmel claims that it is "party-proof, transfer-proof and leaves you with flawless looking skin around the clock" and lasts 24 hours, and I agree with all of these claims, except that I can't verify the 24 hour wear-time because of my unwillingness to sleep in my makeup.

    Lasting Finish 25 Hour Full Coverage, our first long wear foundation with comfort serum for feel good, flawless skin that stays put morning to night. Stay-true makeup applies smoothly and evenly, concealing dark circles and imperfections. Leaves skin looking flawless all day long. Transfer resistant for up to 25 hours. New skin-friendly comfort serum for instant hydration, lightweight and extra comfortable wear all day. Vitamin E helps provide additional skin barrier from free radicals.
    Ingredients: Cyclopentasiloxane, Water, Titanium Dioxide, Butylene Glycol, Talc, Cetyl Peg/Ppg 10/1 Dimethicone, Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate, Trimethylsiloxysilicate, Acrylates Crosspolymer, Cetearyl Ethylhexanoate, Magnesium Sulfate, Dimethicone/Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Ammonium Acrylates Copolymer, Bis-Peg/Ppg-14/14 Dimethicone, Polymethylmethacrylate, Tribehenin, Disteardimonium Hectorite, Laureth-7, Lecithin, Phenoxyethanol, Trihydroxystearin,Chlorphenesin, Dimethiconol, Triethoxycaprylylsilane, Parfum/Fragrance, Alcohol Denat., Propylene Carbonate, Xanthan Gum, Glycerin, Disodium Deceth-5 Sulfosuccinate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Disodium Edta, Laureth-30, Sodium Pca, Urea, Laureth-4, Hexyl Cinnamal, Sodium Dehydroacetate, Limonene, Trehalose, Butylphenyl Methylpropional, Benzylsalicylate, Hexylene Glycol, Polyquaternium-51, Linalool, Geraniol, Bht, Citronellol, Alpha-Isomethyl Ionone, Caprylyl Glycol, Triacetin, Sodium Hyaluronate, Pentaerythrityl Tetra-Di-T-Butyl Hydroxyhydrocinnamate. May Contain: Iron Oxides (Ci 77491,Ci 77492, Ci 77499).
    Rimmel Keep Calm Lip Balms (Reviewed here. $2.50 for 0.13 oz. from Amazon and Walmart): These are fun, whimsical and very moisturizing lip balms that leave lips soft and supple. Of the three shades that I have, only Keep Calm and Party offers any real color payoff. They offer sheer washes of color, and therefore no mirror is needed for application.

    According to Rimmel London, their Keep Balm Lip Balms are moisturizing with a "touch of fun and flirty colors."

    •  Enriched formula with moisturizing oils that calm, soften and protect lips for hours
    •  Instantly increases lip moisture by 22%*
    (*Clinical study: Percent change from untreated bare lips)

    They come in five shades: Keep Calm and Shop (Clear), Keep Calm and Kiss (Pink Blush), Keep Calm and Rock (Berry Blush), Keep Calm and Play (Rose Blush) and Keep Calm and Party (Violet Blush). Of the five shades, I have Keep Calm and Shop (Clear), Keep Calm and Play (Rose Blush) and Keep Calm and Party (Violet Blush).
    Keep Calm and Shop is a peachy nude shade in the tube, but it actually appears quite clear when it is applied to the lips.

    Keep Calm and Play (Rose Blush) appears to be an orate coral shade in the tube, and it is a very sheer pinky coral on me

    Keep Calm and Party (Violet Blush) is a purple-kissed berry with more pigmentation and color pay off than the other two shades.
    Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Nail Color ($4.99 each from ULTA, Amazon, Walgreens and Target) Left to Right: Leapin' Lilac (380), Plummet (422) and Cherry Fast (421). I am completely obsessed with these gorgeous polishes. One coat for full opaque coverage in gorgeous colors, and for less than $5.00 each! I have worn them for over a week on my fingers and toes without any chipping, so it is safe to say that they are definitely well worth having.
    Leapin' Lilac is a gorgeous lavender
    Plummet is a deep and rich royal purple
    Cherry Fast is bright mid-tone blue-based pink 

    Nail color covers in just one coat, brilliantly. The Perfectionist Brush contours to any nail, so color always glides on precisely, quickly, flawlessly. And, the exclusive Flexiglass Complex combines beautiful, brilliant shine and super-strong wear. So simple, so Sally.

    Ingredients: Ethyl Acetate, Butyl Acetate, Nitrocellulose, Triphenyl Phosphate, Adipic Acid/Neopentyl Glycol/Trimellitic Anhydride Copolymer, Isopropyl Alcohol, Styrene/Acrylates Copolymer, Trimethyl Pentanyl Diisobutyrate, Stearalkonium Bentonite, Benzophenone-1, Stearalkonium Hectorite, Methyl Methacrylate Crosspolymer, Sucrose Acetate Isobutyrate, Ethyl Tosylamide, Dimethicone, Aluminum Hydroxide, Citric Acid, Calcium Sodium Borosilicate, Calcium Aluminum Borosilicate, Synthetic Fluorphlogopite, Silica, Tin Oxide. May Contain: Mica, Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Aluminum Powder (CI 77000), FD&C Yellow No. 5 Aluminum Lake (CI 19140), FD&C Blue No. 1 Aluminum Lake (CI 42090), D&C Red No. 6 Barium Lake (CI 15850), Ferric Ammonium Ferrocyanide (CI 77510), D&C Red No. 7 Calcium Lake (CI 15850), D&C Red No. 34 Calcium Lake (CI 15880), Iron Oxides (CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499), Bismuth Oxychloride (CI 77163), D&C Yellow No. 11 (CI 47000), D&C Black No. 2 (CI 77266).
    BIC Simply Soleil Click Razor ($7.00 from ULTA and Amazon): The BIC Simply Soleil Click Razor offers a very close shave, and the soothing cocoa butter moisture strip leaves legs silky smooth and hydrated! This is a wonderful razor at a very affordable price.

    BIC is announcing the launch of the newest addition to its Soleil® line of women’s razors, BIC® Simply Soleil Click™. The product is BIC’s newest razor for women, offering a disposable handle and six 3-blade cartridges.

    The functionality of Simply Soleil Click gives women a simplified shaving experience, offering the convenience of replaceable cartridges at the value of a disposable razor. 

    Each Simply Soleil Click cartridge features a soothing moisture strip that is 2.5 times larger than the average BIC razor moisture strip, which pampers skin and leaves legs silky after each shave.

    BIC Simply Soleil Click offers:
    • One (1) new, brightly-colored disposable handle and six disposable cartridges in each package (refills not sold separately)
    • Three (3) blades for a flawlessly smooth shave
    • A soothing moisture strip with cocoa butter
    OGX Healing + Vitamin E Collection: If you have dry, color treated, or curly hair, then this is a great collection to try. The shampoo is non-stripping and gentle on even the driest hair. The conditioner is deeply nourishing and hydrating, and it leaves hair soft, silky and shiny. The penetrating oil combats frizz swiftly and efficiently, and it smells delicious!

    Bursting with healing, nutrient-rich ingredients, OGX introduces its new Healing + Vitamin E collection, developed to repair damaged hair and restore vitality. Known for its healing and reparative properties, Vitamin E smoothes the surface of the hair, combating frizz and mending split-ends, while reducing the risk of future breakage. Penetrating deep into each strand, it hydrates the hair, increasing its strength and elasticity. Highly nourishing, it also helps to reverse damage caused by heat tools and daily styling.

    OGX Healing + Vitamin E Shampoo is non-stripping and SLS-free, and leaves my hair feeling hydrated.

    Give your hair its daily dose of vitamins with this nutrient-packed shampoo. Its moisturizing formula blend penetrates strands to help increase strength and elasticity, while healing Vitamin E smooths from root to tip.

    Ingredients: Water (Aqua), Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, PPG­2 Hydroxyethyl Coco/Isostearamide, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate, Amodimethicone, Polyquaternium­10, PEG­6 Caprylic/Capric Glycerides, PEG­150 Pentaerythrityl Tetrastearate, Trideceth­12, Cetrimonium Chloride, Sodium Chloride, Tetrasodium EDTA, Citric Acid, Diazolidinyl Urea, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, Fragrance (Parfum), Yellow 6 (CI 15985).

    OGX Healing + Vitamin E Conditioner leaves my hair hydrated, manageable, detangled and frizz-free. I can even get a comb through my curly hair after using this conditioner!

    Lower your risk for breakage and dullness with this conditioner that will leave your locks looking smooth and healthy.

    Ingredients: Water (Aqua), Cetearyl Alcohol, Behentrimonium Chloride, Cetyl Alcohol, Glycerin, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Dimethicone, Cyclopentasiloxane, Dimethiconol, Glycol Distearate, Glycol Stearate, Isopropyl Alcohol, Ceteareth­20, Propylene Glycol, DMDM Hydantoin, Diazolidinyl Urea, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone, Magnesium Chloride, Magnesium Nitrate, Fragrance (Parfum), Yellow 5 (CI 19140), Yellow 6 (CI 15985).

    OGX Healing + Vitamin E Penetrating Oil is an effective anti-frizz hair tamer that leaves my tresses soft, shiny, manageable and moisturized.

    This concentrated infusion of Vitamin E helps heal brittle, damaged hair with just a few drops.
    Evenly distribute one drop to give hair nourishment and to prevent breakage

    Ingredients: Cyclotetrasiloxane, Cyclopentasiloxane, Dimethiconol, C12­15 Alkyl Benzoate, Tocopherol Acetate (Vitamin E), Fragrance (Parfum), Red 17 (CI 26100), Yellow 11 (CI 47000).

    OGX Healing + Vitamin E Shampoo $7.99 for 13 oz. from  Drugstore.comTargetUlta and Walgreens.

    OGX Healing + Vitamin E Conditioner $7.99 for 13 oz. from Drugstore.comTargetUlta and Walgreens.

    OGX Healing + Vitamin E Penetrating Oil $7.99 from Drugstore.comUlta and Walgreens (Affiliate Links).
    Bodycology Moroccan Sunset Moisturizing Body Wash ($3.99 for 16 oz. from Target): This is a non-stripping moisturizing cleanser that leaves the skin soft and thoroughly cleansed. It has a warm fruity floral scent that makes the whole bathroom smell great.

    The sensual fragrance of sweet passionfruit and blooming hibiscus flowers leave you feeling exotic and inspired. Our ultra moisturizing body wash is formulated with Shea Butter & Vitamin E to keep skin feeling hydrated and irresistably smooth.
    Piper's Perfumery Fragrance Mists ($4.48 for 8.3 oz. from Walmart): Available in a wide variety of fruity and floral scents, these light body fragrances are affordable and large enough to share with your housemates.
    Vaseline Intensive Care Spray Moisturizer in Aloe Soothe ($5.84-$8.40 for 6.5 oz. from, Amazon, Walgreens and Target): I have to confess that I am rather obsessed with this moisturizer, in part because it has a delectable fresh green scent that is very refreshing. It is a fast absorbing and ultra moisturizing lotion that sprays out as a foam, and it leaves skin soft, supple, hydrated and luminous. It is actually quite concentrated– so be mindful that a little goes a long way.

    • Moisturizes and absorbs in seconds to help heal dry skin
    • Dispenses evenly with one all-over spray
    • Instantly leaves skin soft, not greasy or sticky
    • Contains micro-droplets of Vaseline® Jelly
    • Best for dry skin
    Ingredients: Water, Isopropyl Myristate, Glycerin, Sorbitan, isostearate, Dimethicone, Fragrance, Avena Sativa (oat) Straw Extract, Polyglyceryl-3 Disostearate, Tapioca Starch, Carbomer, Xanthan Gum, Ammonium Acryloydimethyltaurate/Vp Copolymer, Stearic Acid, Dihydroxypropyltrimonium Chloride, Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Disodium Edta, Propylene Glycol, Lactic Acid.
    LA LOOKS Mega Mega Hold ($2.69-$2.99 from Walgreens, and Amazon): If you are looking for a strong holding gel that won't flake or leave your hair feeling hard and unnatural, then this is a good bet at a great price. It feels lightweight and non-sticky, but keeps hair right where you want it.

    Get a grip!... on ultimate hold and control with L.A. Looks mega mega hold gel.  It lets you shape, spike, mold or slick your hard-to-hold hair into the style that will get you noticed.  Made with TriActive Hold ingredients for absolute fixation, absolute resistance and absolute durability that will last all day long.  This is one gel that won't flake-out on you, and it is alcohol free, lightweight and non-sticky for a smooth finish. Safe for color treated hair.

    Ingredients: Aqua/Water/Eau (Water), PVP, Sorbitol, Carbomer, Keratin Amino Acid, Panthenyl Ethyl Ether, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Glyceryl Polymethacrylate, Propylene Glycol, Glycerin, Oleth 20, Amino Methyl Propanol, Rahnella Soy Protein Ferment, PEG 8, Tetrasodium EDTA, Benzophenone 4, Methylparaben, Diazolidinyl Urea, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone, Parfum (Fragrance), Benzyl Benzoate, Benzyl Salicylate, Limonene, Linalool, Hexylcinnamal, FD&C Yellow 5 Aluminum Lake (Yellow 5), CI 15510 (Orange 4)

    LA LOOKS Volumizing Mousse (Walgreens, Amazon): This mousse offers flexible hold without leaving hair greasy or weighed down. Hair remains soft and touchable without looking or feeling as though it is loaded with styling products.

    Want to turn up the volume on your locks, but don’t want that crunchy feeling? LA Looks volumizing Mousse bodifies hair with lightweight hold and shine that doesn’t weight your hair down. Amp up your locks with soft and touchable finish that lasts all day.

    LA LOOKS Define & Shine ($2.69- from Walgreens and This styling gel boasts a humidity-resistant formula the offers frizz control while it smooths the tresses and leaves behind a lovely shine. This is a great gel for curly hair and hair prone to frizz.

    Love the shine of a serum but need the hold of a gel? This advanced formula coats and seals the hair cuticle to tame frizz while offering humidity-resistant resins that help smooth hair and Micro-Crystalline shine enhancers to deliver a luminous shine.

    Overall Assessment: Great products at affordable prices are imperative for most college students, and these are but a few that will let you do some pampering without breaking your budget.

    What are your favorite drugstore budget-friendly finds?

    Press Sample. All views expressed are categorically my own (Affiliate Links)
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