True Blue

Hey, y’all!

I got a sample of this mask as part of a free gift with purchase, and I was excited to try it out.

Multi-Action Blue Rescue Clay Renewal Mask

from StriVectin

Photo of deluxe sample Multi-Action Blue Rescue Clay Renewal Mask from StriVectin
$48 for 3.2 oz.; StriVectin

This mask is massage-activated, so I used my fingers instead of my mask spatula. It starts out white, and as you massage it on, the capsules of Blue Algae Extract and pigments burst, turning it a lovely light blue. The scent reminds me of your quintessential “Ocean Mist” or “Sea Breeze,” which I find soothing. You only leave it on for 10 minutes, and then rinse it off. My skin felt so soft afterwards, and the mask rinsed off fairly easily with a washcloth.

Key Ingredients:

  • Blue Algae
  • Probiotic Ferment
  • Seaweed (Red)
  • Shea Butter
  • White Clay

It truly is a multi-action mask: it’s soothing, nourishing, moisturizing, reducing signs of aging, and clarifying skin! I tend to love StriVectin products, and this mask certainly didn’t disappoint. I’d consider purchasing the full-size in the future.


What’s one of your favorite calming masks? Let me know in the comments.

Have a great week!

Love,

Sarah xoxo


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Key Ingredients Glossary

Hey, y’all!

This is something I’ve been meaning to create for awhile, and I’ll continue to add to it as time goes on. Whenever I include a list of key ingredients in a post, I’ll link it back to this page to include the benefits of individual ingredients. It’s in alphabetical order for easy reference.

Blue Algae:

  • Soothes & nourishes skin
  • Reduces visibility of fine lines

Honey:

  • Antibacterial properties make it great for acne treatment and prevention
  • Antioxidants slow down aging
  • Moisturizes & soothes
  • Opens up pores, making them easier to unclog

Probiotics:

Protect & nurture skin

Pumpkin:

  • Fruit enzymes + alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) increase cell turnover
  • Vitamin A & C soften, soothe, and increase collagen production
  • Zinc (found in the seeds) help with acne by controlling hormone levels and oil production, as well as helping skin to heal
  • Fatty acids and Vitamin E (also found in the seeds) help maintain skin’s natural barrier and regulate sebum

Seaweed:

  • Hydrates skin
  • Amino acids help to plump up skin, reducing fine lines
  • Omega, zinc, & magnesium help heal conditions like acne and rosacea while creating a barrier from harsh environmental conditions
  • Antioxidants include Vitamins B & C and help clear pigmentation issued caused by sun exposure

Shea Butter:

  • Source of fatty acids, antioxidants, and Vitamins A, D, E, & F
  • Moisturizes & soothes skin
  • Treats acne & blemishes
  • Reduces inflammation
  • Anti-aging
  • Anti-free radicals
  • Relieves itchy/peeling skin (including a dry, itchy scalp)
  • Restores elasticity
  • Reduces razor irritation
  • Reduces stretch marks
  • Unrefined shea butter is safe for use on babies and toddlers (excellent for use on diaper rash or eczema)
  • Great for lip care
  • Repairs damaged hair
  • Prevents hair loss
  • Treats split ends & breakage
  • Natural conditioner
  • Soothes muscle aches
  • Can alleviate Rheumatism
  • Can alleviate Arthritis
  • Can alleviate nasal inflammation & congestion
  • Lowers cholesterol
  • Treats diarrhea
  • Wound & insect bite healing
  • Natural UV protection
  • Cooking alternative to coconut oil, butter, or olive oil

Turmeric

  • Anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties reduce redness from blemishes and calm conditions like eczema and rosacea
  • Combats acne
  • Reduces dark circles
  • Improves fine lines & brown spots caused by sun damage, as well as preventing the loss of elasticity
  • Reduces appearance of stretch marks
  • Soothes dry skin

White Clay:

Draws out impurities without stripping skin

Obsessed

Hey y’all!

I got a new skincare product that I’ve fallen in love with and wanted to share!

Oil Obsessed® Total Cleansing Oil

from bareMinerals

Photo of Oil Obsessed Total Cleansing Oil from Bare Minerals
$30 for 6 fl. oz.; bareMinerals

I’ll be honest, I hadn’t really paid much attention to bareMinerals until recently. There was no particular reason; I think I just assumed it was another hyped up brand with a cult following. As I’ve tried their products here and there, some have been “eh” and some have been “wow.” This one falls into the “wow” category.

I started double cleansing probably about a year and a half ago now. The practice comes from Korean skincare, and it involves using a cleansing oil, balm, or micellar water to remove makeup, dirt, and debris before you cleanse your skin in the traditional sense with a water-based cleanser. Before I tried it, the term “cleansing oil” seemed like an oxymoron. The whole point of washing my face was to get the makeup and excess oil off my face. Why would I intentionally add more? After reading more in-depth about it, the idea made more sense, and I decided to give it a shot.

I started out using Love Your Bare Face Hydrating Cleansing Oil from Julep, a Korean skincare brand. (I figured a Korean brand was a good place to start.) I enjoyed it–it smelled really nice, and it left my skin feeling great. It was a little pricey, though, and it was no match for some stubborn makeup, especially some of my liquid liners. Once I used it up, I moved on to Nourishing Rose Cleansing Oil from Derma E, since I love rose scented things, it’s cruelty-free, and it had a lower price point. Unfortunately, this one was even less effective at removing my makeup, but I still used it up (I hate wasting products.)

After using up the Derma E oil, I thought about going back to Julep. It gets the job done, more or less. Then I came across this bareMinerals oil that was then on sale at Ulta. I figured, why not? At that time it was cheaper than Julep, and it was very highly reviewed. On top of that, I was getting almost twice the amount of product that I would from Julep (6 fl. oz. vs 3.5.)

I tried it for the first time last night, and we’ve found a winner. The instructions say to use 3-4 pumps, so I used 3, but it seemed like too much, so next time I’m going to try 2. The smell is really fresh and not artificially perfume-y. I massaged it into my dry skin, and my makeup didn’t stand a chance. Even my waterproof Urban Decay liquid liner (probably the most stubborn one I own) was no match. Once I had broken up all the makeup and debris, I wet my fingertips and kept massaging my face. That turned the cleansing oil into a cleansing milk emulsion. It was really easy to rinse off, and my skin felt so soft and clean afterwards. Confession: I was lazy and didn’t even follow it up with a regular cleanser. I did my regular skincare routine, and even the next afternoon my skin feels softer and more hydrated. I’m curious to see how long a bottle lasts.

Key Ingredients:

  • Bilberry, Borage, Cucumber, and Sunflower Oils–hydrate and nourish your skin
  • Sea salts–provide minerals that help refine and cleanse

If you’re looking for a cleansing oil, I highly recommend this one.


Do you double cleanse? What are some of your favorite products? Leave a comment to let me know.

Have a great week!

Love,

Sarah xoxo


If you’d like to be notified when new posts go up, please subscribe to Balanced Life Beauty.

Instagram: sarah.elizabeth614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Twitter: @SarahLiz614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Yes, Oh Yas!: Get 3-7 full-size beauty products worth $65+ delivered to you each month for $14.99 + shipping. Use coupon code SARAH614 at checkout for 10% off your first box!

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Spoil Me Sunday: Scrub-a-dub-dub

Hey, y’all!

First blog post of 2019! A lot of people start a new year off by hitting the gym, cleaning their home, and setting goals for the year ahead. I didn’t make any formal resolutions this year; I’m just focusing on being more consistent with healthy habits and routines I already initiated last year. I did do some cleaning around the house, but I was REALLY excited to use one of my Christmas presents to do some deep cleaning of my skin.

Ultrasonic Skin Scrubber

from Kingdom Cares

$49.99; Amazon

I’ve been wanting a skin scrubber ever since I got a facial for my birthday and the esthetician used one on me. My husband was sweet enough to give me one for Christmas. The included instructions were mildly helpful, but I found this YouTube video much more useful. After charging the device for a couple of hours, I used it on my husband first to test it out, but I couldn’t wait to use it on myself!

How Does It Work?

With a combination of ultrasonic vibration and positive ion technology, it draws impurities out of the skin. The same vibration in combination with negative ion technology helps improve skin’s absorption of your skincare products.

Step 1: Steam & Cleanse

I would recommend doing this after a hot shower, or you can put a warm wet towel on your face for a few minutes like you would for a facial. This will soften the skin and start to loosen up debris. Cleanse your face with your favorite cleanser, but don’t rinse it off. This will lubricate your skin and allow the device to glide over your skin.

Step 2: Exfoliate

Before you get started, clean the spatula with some rubbing alcohol. As you can see in the photo above, the spatula is angled. For this step, you want to make sure the angled side is pointing towards your face. You’re going to use the skin scrubber in positive ion mode to remove the cleanser. It’s important that the spatula is at a 45 degree angle. Use upward strokes in the center of your face (chin, nose, forehead); use outward strokes on your cheeks and jawline. This is exfoliating your skin and helping to bring deeper debris closer to the surface. You’ll need to wipe off the spatula between strokes; I went ahead and cleaned it with alcohol, too. When you’re finished, go ahead and rinse your face to remove any remaining residue, but don’t dry off afterwards.

Step 3: Extractions!

This is the part I was looking forward to the most–getting the deep, stubborn gunk out of my face! As you go you’ll have to keep re-wetting your skin. You’re using the same positive ion setting with the spatula pointing towards your face again. I extracted whiteheads that had been driving me crazy for weeks and blackheads that had been stubborn beyond belief. The curved edge and rounded corners of the spatula are really helpful in getting the contours of your nose. Don’t be too rough on your skin–it’s totally fine if you don’t get every single blemish in one go.

After one pass on my nose–gross but gratifying!

Step 4: Nourish

After getting all the junk out of your pores, it’s time to put some good stuff into it. I used my regular Glycolic Acid Toner for a little bonus exfoliation and my Snail Mucin Essence to hydrate. I skipped my nighttime Retinol Serum and replaced it with Rosehip Oil to hydrate, soothe, and reduce inflammation.

This time I turned the skin scrubber over so that the angle of the spatula was pointing away from me and put it into negative ion mode. This helps to get all those nutrients deeper into your skin. I refrigerate my Rosehip Oil to stop it from getting rancid, and the cool sensation feels wonderful.

Step 5: Lift

The video I watched went over this, and while I didn’t see much of a difference for myself, you might as well give it a shot. You’re still using the skin scrubber pointing away from you, but put it into “pad” mode instead. It feels like tiny little pricks of electricity (I promise it doesn’t hurt). Maybe I didn’t do it long enough to see a noticeable lifting or tightening of my skin. I finished off with some soothing moisturizer and called it a night. My skin felt so fantastically clean and invigorated.

Verdict

Long story short: I’m in love. I wouldn’t use this more than once a week, and I would only use it in the evening so that your skin has some time to recover and calm down overnight. I would absolutely recommend getting one. There are some expensive ones out there, but I honestly don’t know if there’s anything that makes them worth the extra money. Having one at home doesn’t replace getting a professional facial (which I don’t do as often as I should), but it helps with maintenance in between professional treatments.


Have you ever used a skin scrubber before? What did you think? Tell me all about it in the comments!

Love,

Sarah xoxo


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Instagram: sarah.elizabeth614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Twitter: @SarahLiz614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

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Ulta 21 Days of Beauty September 2018 Pt. 3

Hey, y’all!

This was definitely the day I was looking forward to the most during this whole event.

Samples

Viva La Juicy Soirée

from Juicy Couture

Photo of sample Viva La Juicy Soiree from Juicy Couture
$98 for 3.4 oz; Juicy Couture

I don’t know why Juicy Couture perfumes always catch me by surprise. I always I assume they’re going to be overpowering florals or tummyache-inducing gourmands. This one is fresh and fruity with some subtle hints of spice. Like your parents always said, “Never judge a book by its cover!”

Top notes: Pink Kiwi and Mandarin

Middle Notes: Indian Sambac, Jasmine, and Water Lily

Bottom Notes: Amber, Musk, and soft woods

Natural Radiant Longwear Foundation

from NARS Cosmetics

Photo of sample Natural Radiant Longwear Foundation from NARS Cosmetics
$49 for full-size; NARS Cosmetics

This foundation comes in 33 shades; the sample came with 8 of them:

  • Punjab (Medium 1)
  • Patagonia (Medium 1.2)
  • Vallauris (Medium 1.5)
  • Santa Fe (Medium 2)
  • Vanuatu (Medium 3.5)
  • Barcelona (Medium 4)
  • Valencia (Medium 5)
  • Aruba (Medium 6)

I’m leaning towards trying Punjab or Patagonia first, maybe Santa Fe. Vallauris has too much pink undertone for me. It claims to be fade-resistant, sweat-resistant, and transfer-resistant for 16 hours. I’ll have to put it to the test…

Beauty Steal

Hyaluronic Dual-Response Serum

from Strivectin

Photo of Hyaluronic Acid Dual-Response Serum from Strivectin
$79 for 1 oz.; Strivectin

I have been obsessed with this serum since I first tried a sample of it maybe a year ago. It makes my skin look so healthy and feel so soft. I can’t think of another product that my skin has responded so quickly to before. As soon as I saw this on the calendar of 21 Days of Beauty deals, I was pumped. The Hyaluronic Acid, NIA-114™, and Ceramides hydrate your skin and then help it to retain moisture.

This was a beauty steal on September 15th. Since I got it for half price, I went ahead and bought 2. 🙂


Were there any products during 21 Days of Beauty you love so much that you bought more than 1?

Love,

Sarah xoxo


If you’d like to be notified when new posts go up, please subscribe to Balanced Life Beauty.

Instagram: sarah.elizabeth614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Twitter: @SarahLiz614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Yes, Oh Yas!: Get 3-7 full-size beauty products worth $65+ delivered to you each month for $14.99 + shipping. Use coupon code SARAH614 at checkout for 10% off your first box!

Ulta 21 Days of Beauty September 2018 Pt. 2

Hey, y’all!

The adventure continues!

Samples

Bye Bye Lines Serum

from IT Cosmetics

Photo of sample Bye Bye Lines Serum from IT Cosmetics
$58 for 1 fl. oz.; IT Cosmetics

I love skincare, and I’m game to try just about any serum at least once. This ones smells very citrusy and felt really rich on my skin.

Key Ingredients:

  • Peptides, Caviar Extract, Sea Water, Hydrolyzed Collagen, and algae–anti-aging properties that reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles while improving tone, texture, firmness, suppleness, and elasticity.
  • Hyaluronic Acid, Argan Oil, and Babassu Oil–moisturize and protect skin
  • Vitamins A, C, E, B1, B2, B3, B5, B7, B9 and CoQ10–nourish skin
  • Licorice Root–brightens skin

Eros Eau de Toilette for Men

from Versace

Photo of sample Eros Eau de Toilette from Versace
$69 for 50ml; Versace

I tried this out on my husband, and it smells sooooooo good! Definitely keeping this in mind for a future gift at some point. I’m a sucker for woody scents.

Top Notes: Mint Oil, Lemon, Green Apple

Middle Notes: Tonka Bean, Ambroxan, Geranium

Bottom Notes: Vanilla, Vetyver, Oak Moss, Cedarwood

Beauty Steal

Brow Power™ Universal Eyebrow Pencil

from IT Cosmetics

Photo of Brow Power Universal Eyebrow Pencil from IT Cosmetics
$24; IT Cosmetics

I’m finally getting around to trying an eyebrow pencil (I know, I’m a little late to the party). This pencil has an oval shape that helps to mimic the look of natural brows, and the color is adaptable for all brow shades–you just have to adjust the pressure you use. It has several good-for-you ingredients: biotin, lecithin, saw palmetto, nettle, green tea, antioxidants, grape seed, and vitamins A, B5, C, and E. The spoolie on the other end is really convenient, too. It also held up really well all day, even through a sweaty workout. Will I make the conversion from powder to pencil, or will I end up using a combination of powder and pencil? We’ll see…

This was a beauty steal on September 14th, so I got it for half price.

Pure Cloud Cream

from Skyn Iceland

Photo of Pure Cloud Cream from Skyn Iceland
$55 for 1.7 oz.; Skyn Iceland

I’ve realized that my anti-breakout tea tree oil moisturizers are drying out my skin, which just causes me to break out (kind of defeats the whole point). I was looking for something that would give my skin more of the moisture it seems to need. This cream is bouncy like marshmallow fluff without the stickiness. It’s recommended for helping skin heal after cosmetic procedures, so I would imagine it will make my skin happy on a daily basis, especially after dermaplaning. So far I’m absolutely loving this moisturizer. It feels so rich and hydrating, and it has a very fresh scent that doesn’t smell artificial.

Key Ingredients:

  • Sodium Hyaluronate–boosts hydration for an immediate plumping effect
  • Oat Extract–natural anti-irritant
  • Neuropeptide–helps relieve skin irritation and stimulate the release of endorphins
  • Hydrolyzed Rice Protein–helps preserve collagen
  • Bisabolol–anti-irritant derived from chamomile; helps calm and soothe skin
  • Aloe–moisturizes and heals skin.
  • Almond oil–full of Vitamins A, B and E; hydrates
  • Icelandic Complex–proprietary blend that contains pollution-free Icelandic Glacial Water, Arctic Cloudberry and Cranberry Seed Oils, and Pure Molecular Oxygen

This was a Beauty Steal on September 15th, so half price. I’m much more likely to try out a high end product when I don’t have to pay full price. Unfortunately, I’m afraid I might be falling in love with it. Whoops! 🙂

Bonus Purchase

I picked up another item that wasn’t on sale.

Glycolic Acid Toner

from Mario Badescu

Photo of Glycolic Acid Toner from Mario Badescu Skin Care
$18 for 8 fl. oz.; Mario Badescu

I’ve been wondering if my AHA/BHA Toner is contributing to drying out my skin, so I picked up this Glycolic Acid Toner to try out. It’s alcohol-free and is recommended for combination or dry skin types. The Glycolic Acid and Grapefruit Extract gently exfoliate and stimulate skin. This toner also claims to help with reducing discoloration from old acne scars (here’s hoping!), as well as build-up that causes dullness.


Did you pick up any of these products during 21 Days of Beauty? What did you think?

Hope your week is going well.

Love,

Sarah xoxo


If you’d like to be notified when new posts go up, please subscribe to Balanced Life Beauty.

Instagram: sarah.elizabeth614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Twitter: @SarahLiz614 (You can also click the icon at the top of this page.)

Yes, Oh Yas!: Get 3-7 full-size beauty products worth $65+ delivered to you each month for $14.99 + shipping. Use coupon code SARAH614 at checkout for 10% off your first box!

Ulta Beauty Haul: June 2018

Hey, y’all!

I’ve been really focused on skincare lately trying to figure out what my skin needs, and what better time than my birthday month to snag some new products? During your birthday month, Ulta gives you 2x the points on every purchase you make, so that’s a pretty nice perk, plus I’m a Platinum Member, so I get a $5 off coupon, as well. Let’s dive in!

Nourishing Rose Cleansing Oil

from Derma E

Photo of Nourishing Rose Cleansing Oil from Derma E
$14.39 for 2 fl. oz.; Derma E

I didn’t end up liking the Nooni Snowflake Jelly Cleansing Oil from Memebox very much, so once I finally used it up, I decided to try something new. I love Julep’s Love Your Bare Face but didn’t really feel like spending that much on cleansing oil this time, so I thought I’d try this one instead. I like Derma E because they are 100% cruelty-free and use natural ingredients.

Ingredients include:

  • Argan Oil: moisturizes skin, plus gives some lovely antioxidants
  • Jojoba Oil: moisturizes skin, plus promotes skin cell renewal to prevent signs of aging
  • Vitamin E: antioxidant that repairs and protects skin

Green Apple Brightening Eye Cream

from Juice Beauty

Photo of Green Apple Brightening Eye Cream from Juice Beauty
$42 for .5 fl. oz.; Juice Beauty

I’ve been wanting a new eye cream because I haven’t been that impressed with the Beautiful Skin Dark Circle Corrector I got from No7 a few months ago, and I’m almost out of my Total Eye Care from Dermalogica.

Ingredients include:

  • CoQ10 + black tea: brighten eye area and reduce appearance of wrinkles
  • Green Tea Leaf: provides powerful antioxidants
  • Organic Sunflower Oil: moisturizes skin
  • Aloe Leaf Juice: rich in glycoproteins, soothes and moisturizes skin
  • Peptides: smooth appearance of fine lines
  • Avocado Oil: full of vitamins, lecithin, and fatty acids that nourish and hydrate skin
  • Evening Primrose Oil: source of fatty acids to condition the skin
  • Malic Acid from Apple Juice: rich in vitamins, potent malic alpha-hydroxy acids, phytonutrients, flavonoids, phenols–provides lots of antioxidants
  • Carrot Root Juice: source of Vitamin A and other vitamins to smooth skin
  • Cucumber Extract: hydrates skin

Note: The Green Apple Brightening product line isn’t recommended for sensitive skin due to the fruit acids.

I’ve been using the Green Apple Brightening Essence for awhile and really like the fresh citrusy smell, as well as how refreshed my skin feels afterwards.

Blemish Be Gone

from Juice Beauty

Photo of Blemish Be Gone Spot Treatment from Juice Beauty
$15 for .27 fl. oz.; Juice Beauty

With how much my skin has been breaking out, I wanted to see if a new spot treatment would help.

Ingredients include:

  • Organic Lemon & Apple Fruit Acids: excellent source of vitamins, lycopene, phytonutrients, flavonoids, and alpha-hydroxy citric acids–powerful antioxidants to help clarify and improve skin tone and texture.
  • Lemon Balm Leaf: clarifies and soothes skin
  • Organic Sage Leaf: provides antioxidants that help cleanse skin
  • CoQ10: smooths skin
  • Organic Green & White Tea: hydrate & soothe skin
  • Green Tea Leaf: provides powerful antioxidants
  • Malic Acid from Apple Juice: rich in vitamins, potent malic alpha-hydroxy acids, phytonutrients, flavonoids, phenols–provides lots of antioxidants
  • Aloe Leaf Juice: rich in glycoproteins, soothes and moisturizes skin
  • Reservatrol from Grape Juice: contains alpha-hydroxy acid and more vitamins and antioxidants to nourish your skin
  • Organic Raw Cane Sugar: contains glycolic alpha-hydroxy acids that help exfoliate
  • Willow Bark: contains natural Salicylic Acid, which helps exfoliate and clear skin
  • Organic Marigold Flower Extract: source of antioxidants to sooth and soften skin
  • Algae: contains minerals and antioxidants that soften and moisturize

Maybe someone else would have better luck, but this product didn’t end up helping my skin at all, so I returned it.

SPF 30 Sport Sunscreen

from Juice Beauty

Photo of SPF 30 Sport Sunscreen from Juice Beauty
$16 for 3 fl. oz.; Juice Beauty

I love knowing that Juice Beauty is 100% cruelty-free. What really caught my attention about the brand, though, is the fact that all of their products that have SPF use 20% Zinc Oxide instead of chemical SPF. Zinc Oxide is great for your skin, and 20% is the highest concentration that you can buy on the open market.

Ingredients include:

  • Zinc Oxide 20%: sun protection
  • Organic Coconut & Jojoba Oils: hydration with a boost of antioxidants
  • Aloe Leaf Juice: rich in glycoproteins, soothes and moisturizes skin
  • Sunflower Oil: great source of Vitamin E to soothe and moisturize skin
  • Reservatrol from Grape Juice: contains alpha-hydroxy acid and more vitamins and antioxidants to nourish your skin

Daily Hydrating Solutions Kit

from Juice Beauty

Photo of Daily Hydrating Solutions Kit from Juice Beauty
$40; Juice Beauty

This kit includes:

(Click on each of the products and scroll down to learn more about their respective ingredients.)

The eco-washcloth is made of bamboo, which is a sustainable material that can have naturally antibacterial properties and is not pesticide sprayed like cotton. It’s also super soft!

Green Apple Brightening Emulsion

from Juice Beauty

Photo of sample size Green Apple Brightening Emulsion from Juice Beauty
$45 for 1.5 fl. oz.; Juice Beauty

If you bought $50 of Juice Beauty products, you got a free sample-size Brightening Emulsion (I ended up getting 2).

Ingredients include:

  • Malic Acid from Apple Juice: rich in vitamins, potent malic alpha-hydroxy acids, phytonutrients, flavonoids, phenols–provides lots of antioxidants
  • Aloe Leaf Juice: rich in glycoproteins, soothes and moisturizes skin
  • Cucumber Extract: hydrates skin
  • Green Tea Leaf: provides powerful antioxidants
  • Sunflower Oil: great source of Vitamin E to soothe and moisturize skin
  • Organic Orange: excellent source of vitamins, lycopene, phytonutrients, flavonoids and citric alpha-hydroxy acids, providing powerful antioxidants
  • Licorice Root: clarifies and brightens skin
  • Sustainably Source Caviar Lime: full of Alpha-Hydroxy Acids to brighten skin

I absolutely love how moisturized and refreshed my skin feels after using it!

Tea Tree Night Lotion

from The Body Shop

Photo of Tea Tree Night Lotion from The Body Shop
$20 for 1 fl. oz.; The Body Shop

I used this nighttime moisturizer a few months ago, but I stopped using it because I felt like it wasn’t giving my skin enough moisture. In hindsight, I think the problem is that I was using the Tea Tree Oil Facewash, Toner, and Mattifying Lotion. Now with my current breakout issues, I’m giving this lotion another go. I really love Tea Tree Oil, and The Body Shop is cruelty-free. Win!

Tea Tree Mattifying Lotion

from The Body Shop

Photo of Tea Tree Mattifying Lotion from The Body Shop
$15 for 1.69 fl. oz.; The Body Shop

As I mentioned above, I’ve used this mattifying lotion before. Ulta was having a buy one, get one half off deal on The Body Shop products, so I went ahead and picked this up, too. I’m using higher quality skincare products than I was before, so I’m not so concerned about my skin drying out this time. Breakouts and excess oil be gone!

Smooth & Protect SPF 50 Primer

from NARS Cosmetics

Photo of Smooth & Protect SPF 50 Primer from NARS Cosmetics
$36 for 1 fl. oz.; NARS Cosmetics

I’ve said before how much I love this primer, so I finally bought it, but I’ll admit I was a little conflicted. NARS doesn’t test on animals, but the fact that it’s sold in mainland China means it’s not a truly cruelty-free brand because Chinese law requires animal testing. Cruelty-Free Kitty is a great resource to check out a brand’s cruelty-free status. I decided to go ahead and buy it because NARS doesn’t test on animals. Some extra SPF never hurts!

Blush in “Orgasm”

from NARS Cosmetics

Photo of sample size Blush in "Orgasm" from NARS Cosmetics
$30 (full-size); NARS Cosmetics

If you’re an Ultamate Beauty Rewards member, you get a free birthday gift; the gift changes every quarter of the year. Here’s a great blog that outlines all the gifts for 2018. I must have been the only makeup lover in the world that didn’t own this classic blush. The peachy pink looks so natural, and the subtle gold shimmer is gorgeous. Now there’s a whole collection built around this iconic shade!

Flower Balm in “Pink”

from Winky Lux

Photo of Pink Flower Balm from Winky Lux
$14; Winky Lux

I’d seen this lip balm on IG and thought it was super cute. It starts out completely clear and then reacts to your skin’s pH to turn into the perfect shade of pink, similar to Lipstick Queen’s Frog Prince Blush. There’s a small chrysanthemum in each tube that makes it even prettier, and you can choose the color (I chose pink), but that doesn’t affect the color of the balm on your lips. I also love the coconut-y scent.


Not bad for a birthday month haul! How many of these products have you tried?

Love,

Sarah xoxo


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