Category

Aging Gracefully

Category

Clairol Natural Instincts

I have been dreading the day that I finally have to start coloring my hair! Now, don’t get me wrong, It’s not like I have an entire head full of grey hairs. But I was getting enough that it was getting to the point that I could no longer pluck out the few random ones or cover them lightly with eyeshadow or root touch up spray. I was also on the quest to get my scalp to a healthier place, which means not using a lot of products that cause buildup. *That will be talked about in another post! But trust me, if you want your hair to grow and grow in healthier, your scalp holds the key to growing beautiful locks.

Anyway, the issue I have always had with dying my hair, is the tone that most brunette dyes have. I’m not a fan of the reddish hues that most dark hair dyes have. I also don’t want to color every hair on my head, as I realistically only have between 10-15 grey’s, if that. So I started researching and decided to give Clairol Natural Instincts a try. It’s semi permanent and washes out in 28 shampoos. The issue was this, the first color I tried, 5C Brass Free Medium Brown, was exactly the same as my natural color. I only applied it to my roots, but since it was the same color as my hair, it didn’t do a great job of coloring the grey’s completely. So the next round, I decided to mix in about a 1/4 of a darker dye, 4 Dark Brown,  to the original mixture. That did the trick. I was left with perfectly rich dark chocolate, grey free roots. It blends in so beautifully with the rest of my hair, that It never looks colored at all. I usually get the full 4 weeks out of the product, but I have gone as long as 5 1/2 weeks without the need to touch up! I can honestly say, this has been a game changer for me. My hair is so much healthier and is finally starting to grow again…and I don’t have grey’s, so that’s the icing on the cake!

L’Oreal Magic Root Cover Up Spray

As I’m getting older, so is the long (& I mean long ) list of things that I have to address. Like gray hairs for instance. I have not colored my hair since my early 20’s. Back then, I use to dye my hair all of the time. Then one day a stylist told me, that the color of my hair was beautiful, and I should stop coloring it now, because one day, I will HAVE to spend money on getting it colored! From that day forward, I didn’t touch my hair in regards to coloring.

Fast forward to twenty plus years later. I still don’t color my hair but I do have a handful of gray hairs that have started popping up, but lately it’s seemed like more than a few! Wow, these things just all of a sudden started appearing in the masses! Ok, maybe that’s a bit of a stretch. But they have become noticeable to the point that I need to do something about them.

I know I’m going to sound like a baby when I say this but, “I don’t want to color my hair!” I also don’t want the random grey hairs popping out of my head! I’m still not ready to commit to coloring my hair yet. SO, I have been religiously using L’Oreal’s Magic Root Cover Up in the color Dark Brown. I actually really love this stuff. Once you get the hang of how to apply it perfectly, it’s super quick and easy to cover your grays! I just spray the area or the random few grays I have and then style my hair as usual.

I will say that every three days or so, I use Neutrogena’s anti-residue shampoo to really clean my scalp. I find this product does tend to build up quickly and weigh my hair down if I don’t really scrub my scalp with that specific shampoo. But, other than that, this product has made my life so much easier. It’s also buying me time until I have to take the big plunge!

 

Amazing Cosmetics Line Smoother + Primer

Primers are such a must for beautiful, flawless looking skin. I never do my makeup without first applying a primer. Since I have super dry skin, I’m always looking for a primer that tends to lock in moisture and keeps my skin looking dewy and fresh all day long. I’m an avid user on the Amazing Cosmetics Anti Aging Primer but was super excited when I had the opportunity to try their Line Smoother + Primer.

Amazing Cosmetics Line Smoother + Primer is formulated with Neodermyl, that consists of powerful and concentrated blend of peptides, ceramides and botanicals to help smooth, firm and hydrate your skin, delivering long-lasting results. The rollerball applicator also provides a soothing and cooling effect as it massages the skin. Not only are you getting the short term effects of flawless skin, this primer is actually treating your skin and imperfections while it primes. I truly love how refreshing it is when applying it under my tired eyes.

This particular primer is a bit thicker in consistency than the Amazing Cosmetics Anti Aging Primer that is my holy grail but, I actually love to use the two together. Since my skin is often times dehydrated, I like using the Anti Aging Primer on my forehead, nose and my chin, while using the Line Smoother Primer on my laugh lines, cheeks and under eyes. The Line Smoothing Primer does a great job of filling in my pores and fine lines, while the Anti Aging Primer keeps everything dewy and fresh! At my age, my makeup is only as good as my skin and my preparation prior to application is the key to beautiful makeup. I will NEVER be without a primer, ever. It’s as simple as that!

Giorgio Armani Designer Lift Foundation

On my latest mission to find a great replacement for my beloved Dolce & Gabbana Lifting Foundation (that has become increasing impossible for me to get my hands on) I think I may have just found my new Holy Grail! Giorgio Armani’s Lifting Foundation. Can I just quickly say, this aging thing definitely has it’s upsides, but the struggle is real for the downsides tool! Well, at least for the constant battle of searching for the fountain of youth. Sigh.

When it comes to my favorite foundations, I’m constantly searching for not only a foundation that gives me medium to full buildable coverage, but also a foundation that doesn’t settle into my fine lines or accentuate my dry skin. On my latest mission to replace my D&G staple foundation, I ran across some mixed reviews on the Armani Lift Foundation. In the past, I was a HUGE fan of Armani’s Designer Shape Cream Foundation, which was one of the BEST foundations I have ever used to date. When Armani decided to discontinue this foundation, many people (Kim Kardashian included) started scrambling to stock up on every last jar in existence. Story has it, that Kim K. even contacted Giorgio Armani himself to get her hands on as many jars as possible! Yes, it was that good. So fast forward to today. After researching great foundations for mature skin (yes, I may have just cringed at using the word mature) because there it NOT a mature attribute about me (at least behavior wise). I then ran across the Armani Lifting Foundation. It seemed to have everything I was looking for in a foundation. It was medium to full buildable coverage, it didn’t settle in fine lines and it was actually great for us dry skinned girls. BINGO! Now to find a store that actually carried this little gem.

I was able to locate the Armani Lifting Foundation at my local Nordstrom. I had done my research extensively and I had basically pinpointed what my color would suit my skin tone by some other reviews I had read online. I also found it a bit odd, that this specific foundation had a very limited range of colors. Could it be that this foundation is also on it’s way to becoming extinct? Limited availability and color range is usually a tall tale sign of what’s to come. SO, when I was approached by the salesgirl at Nordstrom, I was a tad bit disappointed when she barely knew the product line, or even very little about this specific foundation itself. Like I said, since I had done my own research, I basically color matched and confirmed the shade I needed, which is 5.5. It is a perfect match for my more medium than light skin tone and definitely more yellow based, which is what I prefer.

Beautiful young people are accidents of nature, but beautiful old people are works of art.

-Eleanor Roosevelt

Now onto the application. As you already know, I never do my make up without first applying a primer. And with this foundation, it was no different. Since I am currently using the Dermalogica Skinsmart anti aging primer, that is what I used. After slightly pressing my primer into my skin, I used my Real Techniques foundation brush to get the perfect coverage. I did try using my Beauty Blender the next day, but felt the foundation worked better with a brush in my opinion. This foundation worked beautifully with my Tarte Shape Tape and after setting my face using a damp beauty blender and my RCMA No-Color powder, I was left with virtually flawless skin. The Armani Lifting Foundation does a great job of staying put and it also did not settle in my fine lines. It also looks amazing in pictures. This foundation is a keeper for now, but I’m hoping and praying that someone comes out with another stellar full coverage foundation for aging skin in the near future. When I find something that works, I definitely stick with it, but in life, it’s always good to have options!

 

SQUATS do your body GOOD!

As many of you already know, I recently turned 44! Yikes, I know, this aging thing creeps up on us quickly. But, for me, age is definitely just a number and women these days are defying the aging process and killing it! With that being said, it is slightly more difficult to keep my body and skin in tip top shape. But it is absolutely possible with some hard work and dedication. I have always been a bit of a health nut, but not so much that I go overboard. Living a healthy lifestyle and enjoying the better things in life (burgers & cocktails) in moderation, helps keep things on track and still allows me to live life to the fullest. Yes, I absolutely fall off the wagon just like everyone else, but with how my brain works, it’s never usually more than a couple of weeks.

Now on to how I stay in shape, and specifically how I target my problem area, my butt. For me it’s all about targeted training. I am a religious believer of the Brazil Butt Lift workouts. I know, the infomercials are laughable, but when I saw it myself, I immediately got sucked in to thinking my butt would like the Victoria Secret models they kept showing on TV. I actually remember someone laughing at me when I said I had ordered them. Needless to say, this woman was somewhat of a hater to begin with, but her exact words were, “Oh my god, what? Do you think you can actually look like those girls in the commercial? Those informercials are such a scam!” I actually laughed as I walked away, and thought that was a lot of effort on her part to put another woman down. Which is NOT what I am about in life at all. Another thing you guys know about me, is how important empowering other women is. So I quickly brushed it off and started using my DVD’s. Annnnnd, guess what? They worked-

LIFE HAS IT’S UPS AND DOWNS. WE CALL THEM SQUATS.

My other favorite thing to do to help keep my butt lifted, are the dreaded squats! I say dreaded, because I know how much people hate them, myself included. I bought a 10 pound kettle bell, and when I watch TV I pick it up and do squats. I honestly don’t even mind doing them anymore, because I’m not actually thinking about it while I’m watching something on TV. The other thing I would like to point out is, the Butt Lift workout revolves a lot around squats and lunges as well. It is one of the best ways to get a round, perky butt! I promise. As with anything in life, dedication and persistence is key. I once had a personal trainer tell me, it doesn’t matter what kind of workout you do, as long as it is tailored to your needs and you DO IT, you will see results. I saw great results with my trainer, but I honestly feel like my body is in better shape now from doing these home workouts. I am lucky to have an amazing gym in my building, so I try and utilize it as much as possible as well. But there are definitely weeks, sometimes months, where I’m strictly doing home workouts.

Last but not least, eating healthy is also a key component to seeing results fast. When I am targeting my abs for instance, lowering my carb intake really helps highlight the definition. I also feel better in general with limiting my carbs. But like I said, you only live once and life is ALL about balance. My goal is life is to enjoy as many things as I can. I’m grateful to be where I am today…and the people around me and the choices I’ve made, have all helped me get to the point where I’m actually living again, and I’m loving every minute of it!