Friday, November 28, 2008

First Look Fridays Interview Series: Makeup Artist Rosalina DaSilva

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I am thrilled to bring you this week's edition of First Look Fridays, featuring makeup artist Rosalina DaSilva. Born in Portugal, DaSilva moved to Sydney, Australia with her family in 1974. Her partnership with skincare line Kinerase is one of her newest ventures -- but over the years she's worked on movies like Josie and the Pussecats, House of Wax, X-Men: The Last Stand and Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer. Read on to discover more about the fabulous Rosalina DaSilva!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Trend-Filled Thursdays: Pumpkin Products

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Today is Thanksgiving, which means one thing. Turkey, cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie. Loads of pumpkin pie. So why not really get in the holiday spirit with products scented, infused and otherwise created with pumpkin? This gourd-like squash originates all the way back to sometime between 5000-7000 B.C. in Mexico. Now that's a long time to be using the alpha and beta carotene, lutein and Vitamin A found within this fabulous plant! Check out the products that are amazing circa now -- and happy Thanksgiving!

Peter Thomas Roth Pumpkin Enzyme Peel ($44 at I'm already a huge fan of the brand's Cucumber Gel Masque, so I assumed this peel could be no worse -- and luckily, I was right! It cleanses, it moisturizes, it tones, it scrubs away every single piece of dead skin you thought you had and more. Plus it smells unbelievably fresh -- and the somewhat clinical packaging looks perfect in my medicine cabinet.

Slatkin & Co. Ceramic Pumpkin Figural Candle ($6.25 at Does it get any cuter than this ceramic candle shaped exactly like a pumpkin? I think not. Plus the scent is unbelievably real -- and it makes your whole house or apartment smell so delectable in a matter of minutes!

Philosophy Pumpkin Spice Muffin Flavored Lip Shine ($12 at Looking for a lipgloss that tastes utterly and completely like pumpkins -- but isn't too overly, unbearably sweet? Then you have to check out this iteration, which will make your lips super glossy and shiny but won't leave you with a bad taste in your mouth.

on10 Disney Pumpkin Spice Lip Balm SPF 15 ($9 at There are so many things I love about this balm, it's hard to pick just one. So, okay, I won't! The SPF keeps my lips from getting harmed by UV rays, the moisturizing factor totally keeps my pout soft and conditioned, and the packaging is totally adorable. Because honestly, who could resist a Disney princess?

Belli Skincare Stretchmark Minimizing Cream ($52 at While this is technically formulated for mamas or mamas to be, let's face it -- we all get an annoying stretch mark from time to time! Well, this is guaranteed to help make them disappear. That's enough for me!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Two-For Tuesdays: Korres Butter Duo To Go

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Loyal readers will already know about my obsession with Korres Lip Butter. (Click here to catch up.) Well, I think I may have just died and gone to heaven ... because the Korres Butter Duo To Go is totally my new favorite thing.

This duo not only contains a Lip Butter in Guava -- a deliciously fruity and citrusy flavor that evokes the feel of a tropical island -- but a Body Butter as well. The Body Butter is so rich and thick, so creamy and moisturizing, that it leaves skin feeling silky smooth and more conditioned than you ever thought possible. It's not greasy at all, and it doesn't create that horrible slick sheen that other moisturizers leave behind. And of course it contains my favorite ingredient, shea butter, so skin is anything but rough and scaly when you're done applying!

And the Lip Butter really does make your pout pucker with the best of them. It will be supple and smooth in seconds, and the Butter lasts for hours without the need to reapply. Chapped lips, rejoice -- this is just what the doctor ordered.

Unfortunately, this product is no longer available.

Monday, November 24, 2008

The Obsession with Twilight Continues

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Ahh, Edward Cullen. I think you know by now how obsessed I've become with Twilight. (Click here and here for just a couple of examples.) And if you're anything like me, you share the obsession. Well, this led to me seeing the movie not once but twice over the weekend! And while there were a few bumps along the way, I thoroughly enjoyed it. Read on to find out my thoughts -- and if you haven't seen the movie yet, be warned -- there are spoilers ahead!

First off, the most important thing. How was Robert Pattinson as Edward? He was totally, completely and utterly fantastic. He completely embodies the role heart and soul (if vampires do in fact have those) ... at any rate, he was thrillingly delicious in his portrayal of the brooding, somber vampire with good intentions. I could watch him glower for hours on end and never tire of it. His voice is velvety just as it's described in the novel, his smile is to die for, and you can really see the suffering. My one complaint? I'd really like to see the dazzling in the meadow as bigger than it was. I pictured him literally sparkling from head to toe, sun glinting off his body in huge sparkles ... instead he's in a forest with a bit of glitter adding some shine. It was a bit of a letdown.

Edward's bedroom was also not completely as I pictured it -- I thought it would be massive, with more CDs and books than the movie version had. But I loved the openness of the Cullen household, with all the glass walls and airy feel to it.

Kristen Stewart as Bella is okay. Not great, but not terrible. Her spluttering tended to get on my nerves, but she gets the whole "I can't live without my vampire boyfriend and think I might die trying" thing down pat.

My HUGE complaints with the movie lay with the casting of Rosalie and Jasper. Nikki Reed and Jackson Rathbone just do not have what it takes to play these roles. Anyone reading Twilight would agree that Rosalie should be tall, willowy and undeniably GORGEOUS. Well, there's no denying that Nikki Reed is pretty. But come on -- the writer of Thirteen who just happens to be best friends with director Catherine Hardwicke (of Thirteen, natch)? Seems like that was planned from the start. Rathbone just makes tons of crazy faces that don't necessarily seem to indicate the pain he feels in abstaining from human blood; rather, he just looks clownish and a bit freakish! I couldn't help but laugh every time he was shown.

On the other hand, I loved Alice, Emmett and Charlie, played by Ashley Greene, Kellan Lutz and Billy Burke, respectively. They all really became the characters and truly acted and looked the way I thought they would and should.

On the whole, I was thoroughly entertained. I sensed chemistry and heat between Edward and Bella, I saw the forthcoming tension between Jacob and Edward, I wanted to have Edward all to myself just like every teenage girl in America! Frankly, Robert Pattinson could stare at me in agony every day for the rest of my life and I would only be too happy to oblige. When he said, "Can't you just be happy living your life with me?" I actually said, "YES I CAN!" out loud in the movie theater. Add to that a bangin' soundtrack and a fairly well-made adaptation of the cult favorite, and it's a more than entertaining two hours in the movie theater. So much so, that I am going back with my mom when I get to Cleveland tomorrow!

And you know what? I've decided I have what it takes to be a vampire. My skin is already ghostly pale, plus I have hereditary dark circles. So as soon as Edward comes to find me, I'm all set! Now if only I could find out what berry lip stain Jeanne Van Phue from M.A.C used on Robert Pattinson...

Must-Have Mondays: Sephora Scent Sampler Best Sellers For Her

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Not sure what your favorite perfume is? Looking for that one signature scent to complete you, but haven't found it as yet? Well then, the Sephora Scent Sampler Best Sellers For Her set is totally up your alley.

This convenient, handy dandy little box packs quite a big punch. Inside it, you'll find a whopping ten deluxe samples of Sephora's -- you guessed it -- best selling fragrances, all of which are guaranteed to make you melt. You'll get samples of the following:

Aquolina Pink Sugar
Bulgari Omnia Crystalline
Calvin Klein Euphoria
Givenchy Very Irresistible Givenchy Sensual
Gwen Stefani L.A.M.B.
Lavnila Vanilla Grapefruit
Marc Jacobs Daisy
Philosophy Amazing Grace
Stella McCartney Stella
Vera Wang Princess

But that's not all ... it also contains a voucher that lets you get your favorite of the ten fragrances free! Yes, that's right. You pay only $50 at, and then you can bring the voucher into any Sephora store and redeem it for your favorite of these amazing fragrances. And since each retails for way more than $50, you're getting such a fabulous deal! The only bad part is deciding which of these ten really calls your name.

Friday, November 21, 2008

An Insider's Look: Twilight Head Makeup Artist Jeanne Van Phue

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Well, the day is finally here. Twilight comes out today and you know this beauty chick will be there with bells on! I'm seeing the movie this evening and I just can't contain my excitement. In the meantime, check out this fabulous interview with the Head Makeup Artist for Twilight, Jeanne Van Phue of M.A.C!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Trend-Filled Thursdays: Twilight-Inspired Beauty Products

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Okay, admit it. Are you as psyched to see Twilight this weekend as I am? I devoured the entire series -- even the unpublished fifth manuscript -- in less than two weeks, and come Friday night, I will be sitting up close and personal with my favorite vampire in the world, the one and only Edward Cullen. So it got me thinking, of course, about the products that could only have been inspired by the characters we've all come to know and love -- Edward, Bella, Rosalie, Alice and all the rest. Read on to find the products most suited to your vampire lifestyle.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

An Insider's Look: Hairstylist Guido Palau

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Last week I had the immense pleasure of meeting the one and only Guido Palau. Guido, for those of you who aren't familiar, has been a hairstylist for years and years, and is absolutely inspirational. He works on fashion shows the likes of which you’ve heard before -- Marc Jacobs, Ralph Lauren and Calvin Klein might ring a bell! Add to that tons of ad campaigns and magazine shoots and he's got myriad experience under his belt. Guido represents Redken, using their products at shoots and shows, and last week he sat down with The Beauty of Life to discuss how he conceptualizes hair each season and the products he uses to make hair dreams a reality. Read on to discover more!

Lusts of the Week

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I can hardly wait for this Friday. I will be sitting in the theater watching Twilight! In the meantime, I've found a breath or two in which to find a few products I'm loving this week.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Two-For Tuesdays: Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream 1950s Vintage Set

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I had drinks with the lovely PR team of Elizabeth Arden last evening, and after much discussion of the newly packaged Eight Hour Cream, I decided it was imperative that I tell you all about it! The Eight Hour Cream 1950s Vintage Set takes the original two bestsellers -- around since, you guessed it, the 1950s -- and turns it into your old favorites in totally chic and glamorous packaging.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Beauty Giveaway: Slatkin & Co. Sweet Cinnamon Pumpkin Filled Candle

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If you love candles as much as this beauty chick, then you'll be totally psyched about this new beauty giveaway! Because I'm giving one lucky person the chance to win the Slatkin & Co. Sweet Cinnamon Pumpkin Filled Candle. This 4oz. beauty burns for hours on end and retails for $9.50.

Entering is easy. Simply enter your name and email address in the box below, and check back on Friday, November 21 to see if you've won. It's that simple!

This giveaway is open to US residents only. Giveaway runs until Thursday, November 20 at 11:55pm EST. One entry per person, email address and IP address. Multiple entries will be disqualified.

Must-Have Mondays: Prescriptives Custom Blend Lip Gloss

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What's the absolute best product I could think of buying? One that's totally unique and completely my own. So the fact that I was recently able to create my very own Prescriptives Custom Blend Lip Gloss just, well, tickled me pink all over!

Friday, November 14, 2008

First Look Fridays: Joanna Vargas of Joanna Vargas Skin Care

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The best facial in all of New York City? It's definitely by facialist Joanna Vargas. Her cozy spot in the heart of NYC offers the most amazing facials and treatments this side of the East River. I even fell asleep on the table during extractions at my last appointment! Joanna is an absolutely intriguing individual -- and I am thrilled to bring you this week's edition of First Look Fridays with a candid interview. Joanna grew up in Princeton, NJ and graduated from the University of Chicago, where she studied photography and women's studies. She moved to NYC right after graduation -- and the rest is history! Read on to discover more about this fabulous gal.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Learning Something New: Diversion

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I learned something quite disturbing last night, fellow beauty chicks. At an event sponsored by L’Oreal Professionnel, the President of L’Oreal USA, David Craggs, told us all about diversion.

What is diversion, you may ask? Well, you’re not alone. I had never heard of it. But basically, diversion is the selling of counterfeit beauty products at unauthorized retailers. In the case of L’Oreal Professionnel, all products must be sold at salons -- which is why all of the company’s advertising states, “Genuine Products Guaranteed Only in Salons.”

Beauty Questions: If You Could Only Buy One Product a Year, What Would It Be?

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I have a beauty product buying problem. I tend to buy tons and tons of mascaras, lipglosses, eye creams, body washes ... you name it, I've got tons of them lying around my apartment. But in these trying economic times, I've been thinking about ways to cut back -- and, much as it pains me to say it, there might need to be some trimming of the pocketbook when it comes to buying products. So my Beauty Question to you, my lovely readers, is this. If you could only buy one product a year, what would it be?

Yes, I know it's extreme. But if you had to choose, where would your dollars go?

My choice is simple. It's La Mer The Eye Concentrate. At $180, it's not cheap by any means ... but it keeps my eyes looking quite young, it makes my skin feel supple and smooth, and it just really makes me feel like I'm living in the world of luxury. Nothing better or more important than that!

What would be your one product bought in a year? Let me know in the comments!

Trend-Filled Thursdays: Dark Nail Polish, We're Talking Purple and Black!

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The new nail trend seen all over the red carpet? Dark nail polish. But we're not talking green, blue, burgundy or chocolate brown -- though of course those colors are always gorgeous and popular. No, the new colors making their way down the carpets are none other than dark purple and black. Celebs like Gwyneth Paltrow, Hayden Panettiere and Kimberly Stewart are sporting these vampy shades at everything from movie premieres to parties for Vogue to charity events. Read on to see more pics and find out which polishes you can use to get the same effect.

Kimberly Stewart at the Vogue Fantastic Fashion Fantasy Party
Hayden Panettiere at the 5th Annual Alfred Mann Foundation Innovation and Inspiration Gala
Elisabetta Villa at the Quantum of Solace Premiere in Rome

Chanel Black Satin Nail Colour: So this color is so popular, you'll probably have to search for it on ebay. But it's the be all, end all shade that just totally defines this trend. It's been popular for years, and for good reason -- it glides onto the nail smoothly and easily, and the creamy black hue with a hint of shimmer is just so absolutely perfect whether you let it chip or keep it totally pristine. In case you don't want to shell out the big bucks, try Zoya Raven -- a very close dupe!

Color Club Professional Nail Lacquer in Electronica ($1.99 at Yes, it's less than two dollars! But that's not why I'm crushing on this color. One coat is sheer and a bit sparkly, while two create a beautiful, glisteny opaqueness.

Sally Hansen Nail Lacquer in Pat on the Black ($6.29 at Looking for an eggplant slash violet that will glide on creamily and deliciously? Well, look no further -- this is so it. I recommend two coats, as one is a bit streaky.

Dashing Diva Nail Polish in Dark Tempest ($7.99 at So reading Shakespeare's The Tempest wasn't necessarily my favorite part of 12th grade English. But I'll put my bad feelings aside for this totally gorgeous polish, which with two coats turns to an unbelievable creamy mulberry.

butter LONDON 3 Free Nail Lacquer in Union Jack Black ($12 at Go all Lindsay Lohan and Mary-Kate when you put this polish on. Because not only is the bottle the most unique I've seen, but the color inside dries totally creamy and shiny.

Creative Nail Design Nail Polish in Cuppa Joe ($6 at I totally love polish with the shimmer baked in ... because honestly, there's nothing I hate more than glittery polish that feels rough to the touch. And not only does this polish meet that requirement with flying, well, colors ... it's totally the most gorgeous shade of plum!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Lusts of the Week

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I seriously can't believe it's November already. Who knew time could go so quickly? Before I know it, Thanksgiving will be here. Totally unbelievable! But what I'm really obsessing over this week -- and quite frankly, for awhile now -- is Twilight. I've been watching every preview and spoiler for months, and I just devoured the entire series in less than two weeks. I can't believe the movie comes out next week after all this waiting! In the meantime, I have of course been playing with some fabulous beauty products. Here's what I'm lusting after this week.

Wallet-Friendly Wednesdays: Seche Ridge Filling Base Coat

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I've been cursed with deep ridges in my nails. Whether it's from lack of vitamins or just a genetic thing, my nails often have ridges so deep they look like hills and valleys. Not necessarily the best look when trying to apply polish! The ridges keep my nails from being smooth, obviously, but they also severely inhibit my ability to make polish look even. That is, until I discovered Seche Ridge Filling Base Coat.

All I can say is, WOW. One quick coat of this and my nails seriously look as though they're as smooth and flat as a plain. No hills or valleys in sight! And they feel utterly sleek as well, so when I run my fingers over them they don't have any of those mountainous peaks.

Best of all, though, is the fact that it dries quickly and completely smudge-free ... and polish adheres so wonderfully to the nail that I'm utterly amazed every time I use it! It helps my polish to last for days without chipping, and also makes polish somehow miraculously stay out of my nail beds and cuticles. Who knew it was possible?

And the price is right where I like it -- under $5. It's $3.10, to be exact!

Seche Ridge Filling Base Coat is available on

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Two-For Tuesdays: Laura Mercier French Vanilla Duo

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There are few scents I like more than vanilla. It's homey and comforting, and it always makes me feel happy and calm. So how could anything bad be said about the Laura Mercier French Vanilla Duo? I think it's darned near impossible to find anything wrong with this set of bubble bath and moisturizer.

Monday, November 10, 2008

My New Obsession: Dior Diorshow Iconic Mascara

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It lifts. It separates. It curls. It lengthens. There is seriously nothing this mascara can’t do. I swear, I never thought I’d find one to replace the amazingness that is Diorshow. And while I must admit that is still my number one fave, Dior Diorshow Iconic Mascara really does run a close second.

Let’s start with the tube. The silver beauty stands out in a crowd of other models – it gleams and shimmers within my makeup case, simply beckoning to me each time I reach for another model. “Use me instead,” it croons sweetly. And so I succumb … and each time, I am anything but disappointed.

The brush is thinner than I normally like -- I’m a fan of big brushes that really feel like they’re running through each and every lash. But this one features a longer, skinnier silhouette with silicone bristles that truly grip even the tiniest baby lashes!

And you know what? No clumping! I don’t even need to use an eyelash comb when I run this through my lashes. I’ve tried one coat, two, even three – and no matter what, my lashes remain clump- and smudge -free until it’s time to remove the mascara before bed.

Dior Diorshow Iconic Mascara retails for $28.50 at

Fall’s Best Treatment: The Enzymatic Pumpkin Pedicure at Dashing Diva

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Looking for a way to really enjoy those falling temperatures? Well, then you absolutely must check out the new Enzymatic Pumpkin Pedicure at Dashing Diva. Your tootsies will be scrubbed, buffed, lotioned and masked to your heart’s content -- all while smelling the delectable aroma of pumpkin, but of course!

I had the great fortune to check out the pedicure this weekend. My pedicurist absolutely went to town making my feet look absolutely fabulous.

Must-Have Mondays: M.A.C Pearlglide Eye Liner

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A liner that stays on the waterline without creasing or smudging. A liner that looks fabulous no matter which color you pick. A liner that glides on easily and creamily without any need for fixing or touchups. Who knew all of this could be possible in one little pencil? But with M.A.C Pearlglide Eye Liner, it just is.

These handy dandy little pencils come in a variety of shades that are all flattering and utterly gorgeous. But more than that, the application is just absolutely flawless. I've never had such an easy time drawing a line across my lashline -- I usually have to work a bit, really tracing and fixing the color. But with this liner, it's just effortless. It glides across the lid so easily, you'd swear it was tracing the line by itself!

And the colors, oh, the colors. Choose from the following hues:

Molasses (glittery dark brown)
Miss Fortune (eggplant tinged with pink glitter)
Rave (glittery purple)
Spare Change (brown tinged with copper glitter)
Black Russian (black with navy blue glitter)
Wolf (grey tinged with gold glitter)
Bankroll (glittery dark green)
Fly-by-Blue (glittery light blue)

My favorite is definitely Rave. The deep violet hue is somehow subtle enough to appear almost black -- but at closer range, the sparkle-bedecked purple really stands out. And it looks amazing with shadows ranging from brown to black to grey to silver to green to ... well, you get the point.

Whichever shade you choose, you can be confident that your eyes will seriously pop with color and glimmer! M.A.C Pearlglide Eye Liner retails for $14.50 at

Friday, November 7, 2008

Fall Into Fall with a Red Product Giveaway!

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Cooler temperatures have arrived, and you know what that means … it’s time for another giveaway here at The Beauty of Life! And this time I’m helping one lucky winner welcome fall in with a bang. Enter for your chance to win four products in one of fall’s most identifying colors -- red, of course! This set of products has a retail value of $35. One winner will receive the following products:

N.Y.C. New York Color Long-Wearing Nail Enamel in Broadway Burgundy Frost ($1)
N.Y.C. Long-Wearing Nail Enamel in Wing It Wine Creme ($1)
Crabtree & Evelyn In-Shower Moisturiser in Revitalising Mango Butter & Cranberry ($17)

Philosophy Orange Cranberry Spritzer High Foaming Shampoo, Shower Gel & Bubble Bath ($16)

Entering is super-easy. Simply enter your name and email address in the box below, and check back on Thursday, November 13 to see if you've won. It's that simple!

This giveaway is open to US residents only. Giveaway runs until Wednesday, November 12 at 11:55pm EST. One entry per person, email address and IP address. Multiple entries will be disqualified.

First Look Fridays Interview Series: Makeup Artist Joanna Schlip

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One of my favorite experiences during New York's Spring 2009 Fashion Week? Meeting the fabulously talented makeup artist Joanna Schlip. Her resume is quite impressive, with clients including Aisha Tyler, Kim Raver, Ellen Pompeo and Eva Longoria, and editorial credits ranging from Allure and Harper's Bazaar to Seventeen and Teen Vogue. She even works with makeup line Physicians Formula. And through it all, she's so energetic and full of life, bringing excitement and an amazingly full personality to her work. I recently had the pleasure of speaking with her at length about her career, her background and even what she does in the little spare time she's got! Read on to discover more about the fabulous Joanna Schlip.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Right On Trend: Tomato Red Lips

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I'm currently super obsessed with tomato red lips. This week, Rachel Bilson and Hayden Panettiere each stepped out on the town rocking their own version of the trend. Check out the pics below for the proof!

Lusts of the Week

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Well, the election is finally over. What a long road, huh? Hopefully "a change is gonna come," as Sam Cooke sang and Barack referenced in his acceptance speech last night. But in the meantime, I will continue trying out every beauty product I can get my hands on ... and here are my total Lusts of the Week.

Wallet-Friendly Wednesdays: Sephora Girl Mini Bath Beads Set

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Strawberry Candy. Icy Lemon. How delicious do those flavors sound? I've gotta admit, they sound pretty darn fantastic to this beauty chick. Luckily, the Sephora Girl Mini Bath Bead Set has all that and more!

Each of the four bottles included in this set is filled to the brimming with bath seeds in delectably girly scents. Add Sweet Almond and Coconut to the aforementioned Strawberry Candy and Icy Lemon, and you've got yourself one heck of a bath party! I'm a big fan of running as much as possible under the bath water -- we're talking a good three or four capfuls at least -- so that the bath is really foamy, bubbly and amazingly scented.

And can we just talk about the adorable packaging? Where else could you find such fun, feisty pictures than on a product from the Sephora Girls line? My fave is definitely the redhead with the flirty ponytail and the chic pursed lips. Just screams sassy!

But the best part? The price, of course! This entire set will only set you back $6 on Yes, $6! Can you believe it? Bath time just got a lot more fun -- and economical.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Two-For Tuesdays: Sunsilk Captivating Curls De-Frizz Shampoo and Conditioner

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You know what I love? Discovering drugstore shampoos and conditioners that make my hair look, smell and feel just as good as the more expensive ones do. And the Sunsilk Captivating Curls De-Frizz Shampoo and Conditioner both do just that.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Beautiful Belles: Edie Sedgwick

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A series focusing on beautiful women throughout history with important contributions to the arts and entertainment industry and charity -- and a fabulous sense of beauty, inside and out!

It's tough to think of iconic beauties without bringing up Edie Sedgwick. Only 28 when she died tragically of a drug overdose, Sedgwick became an icon through her involvement with Andy Warhol's Factory. Though she and Warhol were only acquainted for about one year, it truly defined her beauty and character.

Must-Have Mondays: Ken Paves Healthy Hair Boost Up Brown Color Drops

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Looking for a way to boost up that color without spending an absolute fortune at the salon? Well, have I got the answer for you. Give Ken Paves Healthy Hair Boost Up Color Drops a chance! This little bottle will do wonders for your tresses.


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