“Beauty, to me, is about being comfortable in your own skin. That, or a kick-ass red lipstick.” -Gwyneth Paltrow

Beauty Blog Link Love for 12/31/11

Welcome to the last Beauty Blog Link Love of 2011, and we're ending the year with a bang! We've got goodies for your face and body, new releases and old favorites, as well as tutorials and a great contest!

Miss Beauty Nerd is smitten over Korres' Body Butter in Basil Lemon because her skin now feels oh-sooo-soft!

At Lipstick Musings, see how a happy mistake at the Dior counter led Shannon to fall in love with the Dior 5 Couleurs Palette in Rosy Nude!

Looking for the perfect waterproof eyeliner? Jenn over at Spiced Beauty reviews the limited edition Make Up For Ever Wild & Chic Aqua Eyes Collection.

Rae reviews lip sets featuring Korres Cherry Lipglosses, Clinique Chubby Sticks, and Bite High Pigment Pencils during the not-so-inventively-named Lip Set Week at theNotice.

At Eyelining Obsessions Claire decides to try the Laura Mercier Eye Basics in Cotton and discovers a couple of potential pit falls.

My Lips But Better shares the scoop on the MAC Naturally Collection for spring 2012!

At Beauty Reflections, Tracy tries out the new CoverGirl Blast FlipStick Blendable Lip Duo.

How long does it take you to use up your makeup? Katherine from Handmade Reviews vows to finish her favorite beauty products by 2012.

Fleurissante reviews the best eyeliner ever: Guerlain Terracotta Loose Kohl.

If you're a fan of Chanel's Coco Mademoiselle but can't part with the pennies? Then head over to Beauty In The Mirror where you can find a very similar scent for only £3.99 - 15 times cheaper than the original!

Pammy Blogs Beauty continues her Holiday Palette Review series with her take on Stila's Daydream Palette.

Le Metier de Beaute fans will rejoice when they learn that a Blush Kaleidoscope has been created. To see it in all its glory, check out Beauty Info Zone’s review and pictures.

Check out Bun Bun Makeup Tips' 8 days of Christmas Eye Makeup Tutorials!


Help celebrate AOYV's second blogiversary; one lucky lady will win a MAC lipstick and eyeshadow of her choice.

On the Cheap: Camocare Organics Quenching Serum

I'm becoming a bit of a health nut. I've always hated doctors, and really only take myself or my kids to one if death seems imminent. I also dislike medications, particularly antibiotics. I'm not a freak about it...I'm more than willing to pop a few Advil if I have a headache! However, over the last few years I've found myself looking more to preventative nutrition to keep those pesky illnesses away, and when someone in the house does get sick, I try to combat the nasties with more natural alternatives before hitting up the doctor for a prescription. Because of that, I've been haunting health food stores more and more over the last few years, and the skin care section has not gone unnoticed by me. There are many wonderful, more natural skin care options out there today (see my reviews of Reviva Labs products herehere and here), and a lot of them have better ingredients lists than the more popular (and expensive) commercial brands on the market. Camocare Organics is one line that offers a broad array of products that are effective, gentle, and largely organic. 

Lovely Lip Review: Ellis Faas Creamy Lips L102

The other day, I introduced you to my first Ellis Faas purchase...Creamy Lips L101. I fell in love with the lipstick  at once. Luckily for me, when I purchased L101 I also purchased a Fall kit that contained L102, along with an eye shadow and a mascara. Now, I've got two great Ellis lip products to play with!

Skin Care Review: Tarte Maracuja Oil

If you've been reading this blog for any length of time, you should know that I have two passions: red lipstick and good skin care. Actually, my skin care passion isn't for merely good skin care--it's for great skin care. I'm constantly on the lookout for the next miracle elixir that will either erase years from my face or keep future years from showing. If my pocketbook allowed, I'd be one of those batshit crazy women who drop $500 on a face cream...my obsession is that great. 

Another more recent obsession for me is QVC. As one of the world's premier 24-hour-a-day infomercials, QVC offers great presentations and, often, exclusive deals on all sorts of amazing beauty products. I can literally watch the beauty showcases for hours on end. Which is how I came across Tarte's Cold-Pressed Amazonian Maracuja Oil. 

Steal of the Week: Clarins "Beauty in a Flash" Kit

Today I'm going to be talking about one of my favorite lines, Clarins. This line has long been a favorite of mine, and I'm sad it doesn't get more of the press it so dearly deserves. I'm not sure why it isn't a more popular line...perhaps due to the chronic understaffing at the counters. I know I personally have a hell of a time finding an SA who actually works for Clarins at the counter. Usually, it's a Shiseido SA, and usually they're trying to convince me to purchase their products instead. Regardless, I've found some real staples from Clarins, and I'm going to make more of a point to review them in the future so you can get a feel for the line. In the meantime, you can read my past reviews for Vital Light Day CreamHuile Santal Face Treatment Oil, and the Instant Eye Makeup Remover

Concealer Revealed: Hourglass Hidden Corrective Concealer Review

For anyone out there with fair skin, excessive stress, a poor diet, or a busy lifestyle that denies the need for sleep, a good concealer for the under-eye area is a must. That pretty much includes all of us. I personally fit into all of the above categories, so you can just imagine the kind of baggage I wake up with. Puffiness and dark circles plague me, and I've spent literally years looking for good concealers. My latest attempt comes from the amazing Hourglass Cosmetics, from which I've already gotten outstanding results with several products, including lipstick and foundation. 

Beauty Spotlight Team 12/24/11

After all the running around, shopping, cooking, and headaches the holidays are actually here. The Beauty Spotlight Team wishes you a happy and very healthy Christmas, Chanukah and New Year. May 2012 be a beautiful year in all ways.

Joeybunny took part in the O Tannenbaum!perfume blogging project - see what woody perfumes stole her heart over at Beauty, Bacon, Bunnies!

If you've looking for the perfect balance between moisture and colour for the cold winter months then check out the tinted balms that Lisamarie from Beauty Crazed has been loving lately!

Beauty Info Zone has a brand new look. We're putting on the Glitz with Tarte for the holidays. Come see what Tarte and Beauty Info Zone have to show you.

At Everyday Beauty, Zuzu did the unthinkable and chose her favorites from a year's worth of purchases. Many of these items were not necessarily released as new this year, but they were new to her. Come read about what made Zuzu's best-of list.

Over at Lipstick Musings, Shannon has found a not-quite-red (for a change) that will rock your world in Guerlain Rouge Automatique Lipstick #168, L'Heure Bleue!

London Makeup Girl asks if you are washing your hair properly? She was mortified to find that she wasn't! Read the post and watch her video here.

Modesty Brown has a Butter LONDON Knees Up and shares some perfect twinkly red nail colours for the festive season.

Paula, from Older Girl Beauty, talks with MAC MUA Romero Jennings about Daphne Guinness and her upcoming makeup collection with MAC.

Looking for some last minute gifts? Pammy Blogs Beauty continues her Holiday Palette reviews with Too Faced "In Your Dreams" Palette.

Perilously Pale shares a Face of the Day post that will have you hopping running to place an order for some Rouge Bunny Rouge. Come see why this is one of her favourite brands!

Over at Pretty in Dayton, Styrch falls in love with Cult Nails Power Thief.

Prime Beauty reviews Benefit's new Hervana blush; it’s spellbinding and will hypnotize you—she hopes!

Visionary Beauty shares her collection of the delightful Rouge Bunny Rouge loose glitter pigments, including the two new tantalising shades; Caress of Mink and Embrace of Cashmere.

Lovely Lips Review: Ellis Faas Creamy Lips L101

Ellis Faas has been a blog darling for quite awhile now. I can't tell you how many reviews I've read extolling the virtues of the line. The line is based completely on colors inspired by those found in the human body--in fact, the web site refers to it as the "Human Colours Collection". I don't know that I completely agree that all of the colors are human-body colors (the lip colors, in particular, include a few shades such as a vivid orange, which I personally have never seen naturally occur on a human body). Nonetheless, it's a great concept. It stands to reason that colors drawn from the human body will naturally be more flattering than more primary, synthetic colors. 

Skin Care Review: Perricone MD Advanced Face Firming Activator

I've been reviewing an assortment of Perricone, MD products lately, and those of you who've been reading this blog for the last few weeks may have noted that I haven't been all that impressed (see here and here and here). It's not that the products are bad...they haven't made me break out, there's been no allergic reaction, I haven't seen the quality of my skin decline while using them, but for the price point, I've just found them completely underwhelming. The line boasts some pretty lofty claims, and thus far I haven't seen the results I've been promised. 

One of the products I decided to try is the Advanced Face Firming Activator, a serum that promises to give you firm, glowing skin with decreased lines and wrinkles. If you believe the folks at Perricone (as well as the reviews on the web site, you'd think this stuff was just the end-all and be-all of skin care products. I read all of the information, including the reviews, and took the plunge. Sadly, I found that as with the other Perricone MD products I've tried so far, it's just not all that. 

Make Up For Ever HD High Definition Foundation

I'm a foundation addict. It doesn't matter which type it is--powder, creme, liquid--it doesn't matter the coverage level--sheer, medium, full--and it doesn't matter the finish--matte, satin, dewy. I'll try just about anything. My feeling is that my skin looks and acts differently every day, so having an assortment of foundation types is perfect. On days  when I'm dry, I go for a dewier finish. During the warmer months, I stick with powder or matte. When I'm in a hurry, mineral foundation is the easiest, as it can be swiped on in about 2 seconds. But when I want the illusion of perfection, I have to be more careful, and my choices are much more limited. That's where Make Up For Ever's HD High Definition Foundation comes in. Sort of. 

Beauty Blog Link Love 12/17/11

The holidays are almost here, and this week the ladies have plenty of goodies to share with you!

Jen celebrates earth tones with this FOTD at My Funny Valentine.

Want luscious long lashes? Amy Antoinette shows us the impressive results of Rapidlash.

Fleurissante shares her impressions on Chanel Holiday 2011 collection.

Phyrra shares with you her new favorite way to follow all her beloved beauty bloggers... on the Kindle Fire!

Take a sneak peak at the new Sigma Extravaganza Complete Kit and grab the Sigma Brushes coupons at Handmade Reviews.

Feeling the holiday blues? FabDiva20 has made it look cheerful for the Holidays with herFOTD Holiday Look #1: Bright Blues and Purples!

Gouldylox tried a new BB Cream from 3LAB that contains some seriously high-tech skincare. Is $95 too much to pay for a BB Cream with stem cells? At the very least, it looks amazing. See for yourself.

The Pink Sith asks: What do dragons, lipstick, the Welsh and the Utah Saints all have in common? Find out when you read about Shiseido Perfect Rouge in RD514 Dragon.

Midnight Violets shares her favourite red lip products, perfect for Christmas - and the rest of the year too!

Christmas is almost here! Musicalhouses does a Christmas gold and green eye look, and a Christmas gold nail look to match!

It's officially Winter! Check out Hellcandy's favourite hand creams to see your mitts through the colder weather!

Will you wear mascara during the Zombie Apocalypse? Tracy at Beauty Reflections thinks that CoverGirl 24HR LashBlast is perfect!

Are you ready for the holidays? Anita shows you some festive nail ideas over at Pleasureflush!


Battle dry winter skin by entering Audrey Dao's Holiday Giveaway to win her favorite skin care products!

Prime Beauty is gifting one lucky reader her TOP holiday beauty pick, Tarte's Lip Service LipSurgence Collection. Enter now!

Is your skin holiday-ready? Over at theNotice, Rae is giving two winners a chance to win the Skin Tight Body Lotion of their choice. Don't miss this party-approved Prtty Peaushun review and giveaway!

On the Cheap: Jack Black Hand and Lip Duo

Have you ever been standing in line at Sephora and taken a look in the cute little bins they have lining the queue? Yes, I'm talking about those cubbies full of smaller products you may never have heard of, as well as special travel sizes of many of your faves. It's marketing genius...I can't tell you how many of my truly impulse purchases have taken place due to those bins and a 5-minute wait in line. Well, that's what happened to me recently, and I hit the jackpot when I chose the Jack Black Hand and Lip Duo. For only $12, I solved my hand and lip problems within days. 

Lovely Lips Review: Guerlain Rouge Automatique #168, L'Heure Bleue

Okay, okay. So I know I made all sorts of promises recently to veer away from my comfort zone of brilliant red lips in an effort to find more toned-down shades, but when I saw Guerlain's Rouge Automatique #168, L'Heure Bleue at Sephora the other day, I just had to make an exception. It's such a pretty, pretty color, with lovely sparkles to boot, that I just had to try it. And I've found it to be a perfect holiday shade!

Skin Care Review: Bliss Triple Oxygen Instant Energizing Mask

I love facials. Last year, my husband hit the gifting jackpot and my everlasting gratitude by giving me a HUGE gift certificate to a nearby spa. I spent every last dollar on facials. There's just nothing like lying back and letting someone pamper you with quiet music, a darkened room, and layer after layer of soothing, age-defying skin care. I absolutely adore every minute of it. And the way my skin looks when I leave is unbelievable. Years have melted off, lines have disappeared, moisture has been replenished, my skin tone is brighter, clearer, and more even. Yes, it's heaven. But what about those times when you don't have time (or money) for a spa facial? That's when it's time for an at-home treatment like a mask. Over the years I've collected literally dozens of masks to purify, hydrate, soothe, clarify, de-puff or brighten my skin. The vast majority of these are in a clay or gel base or peel off the skin. So when I was introduced to the Bliss Triple Oxygen Instant Energizing Mask, I fell in love with the concept before I even tried it. 

Skin Care Review: Perricone MD Cold Plasma

On a recent trip to Sephora, I caught sight of several kits and products from the Perricone MD line. I'd heard a lot about the products (both positive and negative), and had been wanting to try it for a long time. The primary reason I hadn't gotten around to it was twofold: the mixed reviews and the price. It's a very expensive line, and I hadn't been willing to make a commitment to such an investment, especially given many less-than-stellar reviews. However, it was the annual Friends and Family sale at Sephora, which afforded me a 20% discount. I also visited the Perricone MD website and found that they had a limited-time discount going on which was even better at 25%. So, being the skin care junkie that I am, I decided to take the plunge and purchase several products, at the heart of which was the infamous Cold Plasma treatment. 

Beauty Spotlight Team 12/10/11

The holiday season is upon us. Is your shopping done yet? Take a break, sit by the fire grab a cup of coffee or cocoa and gather some great gift ideas from your favorite beauty bloggers!

Nothing could be finer than a gift from Le Metier. Beauty Info Zone shares two beautiful nail polish sets that would fit into any beauty lovers stocking perfectly.

How's your gift list coming along? Take a look at the first installment of Prime Beauty's Holiday Gift Guide for 2011!

Lisamarie from Beauty Crazed has skipped right over winter and has moved right on to Spring nail shades - check out Chanel Vernis in May and June and see if you don't agree that this was a good call!

At Everyday Beauty, Zuzu's Petals found another red lipstick to love. See what's so special about NARS Sheer Lipstick in Flamenco.

London Makeup Girl bought a couple of the new MAC Metal X cream eyeshadows. Are these less crease-prone than the 2007 version? See what she thinks here: MAC Metal X Gold Carbon and Palladium.

Can Quick BlowDry Shampoo by it FACTOR really reduce your blow dry time??? Pammy Blogs Beauty tests it out.

Modesty Brown takes us through a new purchase, a couple of old favourites and an item that was good enough for a fussy beauty blogger to re-purchase. She invites you to share your old, new and re-purchased items too.

With Christmas looming and the search for the perfect present upon us, Visionary Beauty has a look at the Trish McEvoy Portable Beauty collection in Romance.

Think a product called Loose Glitter Pigment sounds like something you could never pull off? Don't let the the name scare you. Perilously Pale shows you why the new neutral offerings from Rouge Bunny Rouge are stunning and MUST HAVES!

Joey is hypnotized by Aroma M's latest potion, Geisha Amber Rouge . Find out why this perfume is as potent as a drug at Beauty, Bacon, Bunnies !

Over at Pretty in Dayton Styrch discovers what is quite possibly the best scent to wear for the holidays at a visit to Preen Apothecary.


Don't forget about the BeautyBloggers.org auction to benefit Doctors Without Borders. Participants have donated a treasure trove of the best lotions, potions, products, and gadgets. Donated items range from the hottest items from this year’s holiday collections to hard-to-find exclusives and limited edition cult favorites. When the auction ends, winning bidders make their donations directly to Doctors Without Borders, through the site’s secure giving page.

Hurry, the auction ends Monday, December 12th.

Skin Care Review: Caudalie Beauty Elixir

Do you have favorite words? I do. As an English major in college, I used to read excessive amounts of literature, much of it from the Renaissance and Olde English periods. Every once in awhile, I'd stumble across a word that just struck my fancy for one reason or other. "Wherefore" is another of my faves. Did you know it doesn't mean "where"? Nope. It means "for what reason or purpose." So when Juliet plaintively wails the words "Romeo, oh Romeo! Wherefore art thou Romeo?", she's not asking where he is, as so many people assume. What she's asking is why is he the ONE person she is forbidden to love. Sad, huh?

Anyhow, I digress. "Elixir" is anther of my most adored words. Every time I hear it or read it, I have visions of Zeus running around with unicorns for some reason. It's just a magical word. It's also fun to say. Seriously, try it. You really can't be in a bad mood when you are saying the word "elixir." So, now that I've got you chanting the old elixir mantra, let me tell you about Caudalie's fabulous Beauty Elixir, a lightweight spray infused with essential oils designed to nourish and smooth the skin and add radiance.

The Ultimate in Illumination: Laura Mercier Illuminator

I'm not usually a huge fan of highlighting products because, frankly, I have no life. I don't ever go out at night because my husband is in the restaurant business, so the need for a highlighter just isn't there. Add to that the fact that I have what is possibly the least glamorous job in the world (I work in a kitchen), and the whole concept of highlighters becomes laughable. That being said, I'm also a sucker for little pretties, and that's where Laura Mercier got me with her Illuminator, a gorgeous item if I ever saw one.

Lovely Lipstick Review: Chanel Rouge Allure Velvet #40, La Sensuelle

So, have you heard about the new Chanel Rouge Allure Velvet lipsticks? They're being touted as creamy, long-lasting mattes in a lovely array of colors, ranging from the most neutral nude to a brilliant fiery red. In keeping with my new vow to veer away from my typical "red-reds", I chose the gorgeous La Sensuelle as my first foray into the line. Does it live up to all the hype? 

Skin Care Review: 3Lab Perfect Cleansing Foam

The next few weeks on Lipstick Musings are going to be heavy on the skin care. Since the weather has begun cooling and the heaters have been turned on, my skin has begun its annual changeover from combination to dry, so I'm having to re-evaluate all of my skin care and tweak it where necessary. One of the first changes I had to make was with my cleanser, since my summer foam cleanser is a bit too harsh for the dry winter months. Luckily for me, I hit the jackpot with my last Beautyfix box and received a full-size tube of 3Lab's amazing Perfect Foam Cleanser. 

Beauty Blog Link Love 12/3/11

The auctions are now open! Head over to this year's BeautyBloggers.org auctions to bid on everything from classic perfumes to the one-of-a-kind (and once in a lifetime) Ultimate Neiman Marcus Experience.

Polish Insomniac shows you the Muppet Glitters - her way!

Miss Beauty Nerd is smitten over Benefit's pretty little scents of Crescent Row. Can you blame her?

How do you feel about orange lip products… with a kick? Don't miss theNotice's love-it-or-hate-it LUSH Chilli Tingle Lip Tint review.

The Beauty Spot goes into outer space with a galaxy inspired look.

Looking for the perfect luxe gift for the beauty lover in your life? Well, Krasey Beauty has the scoop on the new holiday collection from Guerlain.

Addicted to Beauty is shocked by the cologne for cheating men - what's your Alibi?.

Ever wanted to try a bold red lip but were a bit shy? Prime Beauty has five gorgeous red lipsticks for scaredy cats!

At Lipstick Musings, see how a beautiful mistake led to an unexpected new love with the Dior 5 Couleurs Eye Shadow Palette in Rosy Nude!

At Eyelining Obsessions, the No7 Midnight Enchantment blush demonstrates why getting sucked in by pretty online pictures can sometime lead to buyers remorse.

The Pink Sith wonders if Sephora came up the with the Name Foiled Love before or aftre Kat von D's break up with Jesse James when she reviews the Kat von D for Sephora Foiled Love Lipstick in Adora.

Finally! A chart that describes how to apply eyeshadow for Asians! Bun Bun Makeup Tips shows us some incredible tips on where to apply eyeshadow on the Asian eye.

On My Funny Valentine, Jen swatches her new Inglot 10 pan eyeshadow palette and shows you how to depot the shadows with a strong magnet.

Jenn over at Spiced Beauty went crazy at Imats! Check out what she got.

Tracy at Beauty Reflections test out the new Tokidoki 24 Karat Skate Deck Palette.


Suffering from dry wintertime skin? Musicalhouses' Dr Organic Manuka Honey Gift Set giveaway is just the thing for you! Giveaway closes soon, so hurry and check it out!

Beauty Crazed wants you to prepare to get really naked! Enter to win nude palettes from Urban Decay, Smashbox, Stila, Sleek MakeUP, 100% Pure and Sephora!

Beauty Spotlight Team 12/2/11

It's time to peek into another Beauty Spotlight Team member's makeup bag, and this week Zuzu's Petals will show just how much she can squeeze into a tiny bag. What minimalist essentials might be hiding inside?

Click here to see what's in Zuzu's bag!

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