Thursday, November 21, 2013

I Know I’ve Been MIA… But I SWEAR I Have a Good Excuse!

…And her name is Stella Rose!

For those of you who feel completely abandoned by me, cursing my good name… How can you stay mad at me when you see my adorable excuse? Of course maybe I’m being narcissistic and you didn’t even notice I’ve been gone. Either way… The cute little princess in a tutu has taken up a great deal of time, but I’m ready to get back to beauty business!

Now, don’t worry… This isn’t going to turn into a mommy blog (though I do have a cute “Mommy and Me” skincare story). I’m just as bitchy as ever. Don’t believe me? Well, you obviously haven’t been reading my E! Entertainment Beauty Police column. I’ve been back with Beauty Police since last Monday and let’s just say I’ve been writing more “Beauty Bailouts” than “Get the Looks”.

So keep your eye out for more Beauty Binge posts and keep reading my E! Beauty Police for snarky commentary and makeup how-to’s. Binge on, lovelies!

Janna Posted by Tags ,
Friday, September 27, 2013

Spa Slut: The Spa at the Mandarin Oriental San Francisco

Forget Rice-A-Roni and Ghirardelli Chocolates, the Spa at the Mandarin Oriental is the true San Francisco treat. It seems like it’s always tough for urban luxury hotels to create a real “destination spa” environment when they are confined to a vertical building. Based on the names and prices, I have gone to many top luxury hotels in major cities and expected great things. But instead I have been underwhelmed by spas that were obviously jammed into a few renovated hotel rooms.

So you can imagine I wasn’t expecting Shangri-La when I visited the Spa at the Mandarin Oriental San Francisco. Of course I should have known better. When I lived in New York City, I was a huge fan of the Mandarin Oriental Spa New York, but that spa is in a different hemisphere. Of course I had thoroughly examined the website and knew San Francisco wouldn’t have the same extras (like the Vitality Pool or Amethyst Crystal Steam Room )that are featured in NYC’s larger location.

Frankly, once those elevator doors opened I didn’t need any extras… I felt instantly transported to an exotic luxury spa, perhaps in Bali or Thailand. The ceilings are sky high (so in other words, the Mandarin didn’t break my cardinal sin of taking over a few hotel rooms) and the reception area has two dimly lit areas with sumptuous and silky seating areas.

As soon as I approached the reception desk, I was told to make myself comfortable while the attendant brought me delicious tea and a warm towel to begin my “journey.” He took my street shoes and replaced them with spa slippers. Pure class.

Continue reading…

Janna Posted by Tags , ,
Saturday, September 21, 2013

Total Game Changer: My Love Affair with Bite Beauty Cashmere Lip Cream

That’s it. All my other lipsticks are going on the Velveteen Rabbit shelf. Why would I wear a lipstick that could dry out my lips or disappear after an hour when I could wear super creamy, ridiculous pigment, and long-lasting Bite Beauty Cashmere Lip Cream ($28)? Ladies, I know I sound like a commercial but I can assure you I’m not getting paid (though I would certainly appreciate a life time supply of product). I’m seriously in love with this stuff.

One of the perks of being the writer of E! Online Beauty Police is I get sent tons of beautiful makeup for possible inclusion in my columns.  Bite’s publicist sent me the Bite Beauty Cashmere Lip Cream in Muscato and I immediately slicked it on (obviously I insist on testing every product I recommend) to see how it looked.  I wasn’t expecting sparks since I’ve always been a lipstick vs. lip gloss girl, but this is no lip gloss my friends. It is a rich pigmented cream that applies with precision, doesn’t feather, and lasts for hours and hours.

The true test — my baby shower.  11:30 AM I applied the lip cream after lining my lips with Bite Beauty Contour Lip liner Cabernet ($24) (by the way, I was SO confident in the lip cream’s ability to perform I didn’t even fill in my lips with the liner. I knew this lip cream wouldn’t budge and dare leave me with just a lip liner outline). For the next five hours, that’s right five hours, I talked my head off, drank several glasses of water, stuffed my face with enough food to feed a football team, and when I looked in the mirror at 4:37 my lips looked the exact same as when I first applied the lip cream.

That my lovelies, is what we beauty addicts call pure magic.

Janna Posted by Tags , , ,
Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Best Way to Get Skin Ready for Fall: Win Free Products from First Aid Beauty!

For those of you who’ve read Beauty Binge from the beginning you know I worship at the house of First Aid Beauty.  I find that it’s one of the only skincare brands that acts as a Valium to my overly sensitive drama queen skin. Um, thank GOD for their Ultra Repair Cream during my pregnancy. At first I was hesitant to waste that fluffy hydrating goodness on my body… But, when my belly and legs got attacked by a bad case of the pregnancy itchies, I found the Ultra Repair was the only cream that managed to calm my skin and prevent me from lighting it on fire. I was also worried I wouldn’t be able to keep up any kind of anti-aging regimen while I was pregnant but after doing some research I found the Dual Repair line was safe for mommys-to-be. So I use the Dual Repair Power Serum every day before my moisturizer. Everyone wins.

Okay, enough about me…

Let’s talk about how you can win some products!  First Aid Beauty is giving away over $600 worth of products in their “Fab to the Rescue Sweeps”.  Here are the prizes:

- 1  Grand Prize: $300 prize pack including Ultra Repair Cream, Oatmeal Mask, Facial Radiance Polish, Dual Repair Eye Cream, and more!

- 2 Runners Up: $150 prize pack including various First Aid Beauty Products

To enter, either click the photo above or follow this link: http://on.fb.me/1aliIqe

Good luck my lovelies!

 

 

Janna Posted by Tags , , ,
Saturday, September 7, 2013

New York Fashion Week Spring / Summer 2014: Get the Makeup Looks!

I know we are only three days into NYFW SS 2014 but I’m already loving on some of the makeup looks that are being sent down the runways. The good news? Most of the looks are totally wearable off the runway and flatter most skin tones.Here are a few of my favorites:

Creatures of the Wind SS’14 – Lead Makeup Artist: James Boehmer, NARS Director of Global Artistry

Photos courtesy wwd.com

LOOK: “The real statement of the makeup look is the satin textured orange lip. It contrasts the color and finish of the opalescent-textured eye, and also references the era of the artist Eugene von Bruenchenhein, which was a source of inspiration for Shane and Chris. We loved the idea of translating this into the beauty look as well.”
HOW TO CREATE THE LOOK:
FACE
- After priming skin, apply NARS ‘Radiant’ Cream Compact Foundation ($38). To seamlessly blend and give foundation a lighter feel, blot face with a damp sponge.
- Use NARS Stick Concealer ($23) to hide any imperfections.  Instead of applying directly to the skin, warm concealer between your ring fingers and tap on or apply with a concealer brush.
EYES
- Mix both eyeshadows in the NARS Duo Eyeshadow Iceland ($34) and apply to entire eyelids. Use an eyeliner brush dipped in both shadows to line the inner corners of your eyes.
LIPS
- Line entire lip area and fill in with NARS Velvet Matte Lipstick Pencil in Red Square in ($25)
- Then, since NARS used Timanfaya Satin Lip Pencil, which won’t be out until Spring 2014,  try applying a layer of NARS Lipstick in Heat Wave ($26)

Continue reading…

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Monday, August 26, 2013

Steep vs. Cheap Liquid Liner Showdown: Marc Jacobs Beauty vs. L’Oreal Infallible

It’s such a myth that you always have to spend a lot of money to get good cosmetics and skincare… There are treasure troves full of well-performing drugstore products that rival their most expensive department store competition. But then sometimes they don’t… Occasionally I’ll find that even though the drugstore brand is good, the department store brand is better — way better. So how did the Marc Jacobs Beauty Magic Marc’er Precision Pen  ($30) measure up to L’Oreal Infallible The Super Slim Liquid Eyeliner ($8.99)? Let the battle of the long-wearing black felt-tip eyeliner pens begin! For those of you who love a good winged cat eye but you’re terrified you’ll mess it up, you’re about to find your new baby.

Marc Jacobs Beauty Magic Marc’er Precision Pen  ($30):  This long-wearing liquid liner just looks expensive. In fact, it reminds me of a lighter Mont Blanc pen. The color is a deep, rich black and flows continuously without fading or running.  I’ve never experienced such a precise, fine tip, yet if you press the pen tip harder your line will get thicker. It literally lines like a calligraphy pen.   The downfall? Of course there’s a downfall… It stayed on too well and lasted too long. After trying to remove it with several Q-tips full of waterproof eye makeup remover I simply gave up.  Every night I tried to get more off and it became a terrifying tar that came off in chunks. After three days I was free. Now, keep in mind because I have eyelash extensions I’m very limited in what I can use as eye makeup remover. I’m not allowed to use any oil-based products so I can’t vouch for how an oil-based waterproof makeup remover would perform.

Verdict: Unless the removal process is worth it to you because you’re attending a day wedding, a rave, an outdoor concert, or you’re a working actor who needs her makeup to last 16 hour days, despite all it’s strengths, I would skip this one.

L’Oreal Infallible The Super Slim Liquid Eyeliner ($8.99) This long-wearing liquid liner pen is by far the best drugstore version on the market. In fact, I think it beats quite a few of the department store brand versions as well. While it doesn’t have the exact fine tip of the Marc Jacobs pen, it’s pretty damn close.  Just like the Marc Jacobs pen you can press harder to create a thicker line. The color comes out in a rich black (though the MJ black is slightly richer) and does not fade, run, or flake.  It gives a precise, smooth application and allows you to easily create winged eyes.  The downfall? It’s advertised as lasting 12-hours. I would say it starts fading at around 6 hours.  Now, for someone like me who goes out for  3-4 hours max to a dinner with my husband or a party, this is the perfect eyeliner because I don’t want it to last any longer.

Verdict: If you’re looking to wear this eyeliner to work, keep in mind it’s going to fade before your mid-afternoon coffee buzz. If you’re like me and you just want to use it to create a nighttime look, this is the perfect eyeliner pen.

Coming Soon: Keep your eyes out for a review of the entire new Marc Jacobs Beauty Makeup collection.

Janna Posted by Tags , , , , , , ,
Saturday, August 3, 2013

When You’re Skin Needs to Chill the F Out: Zensation Healing and Soothing Mask

We all love summer… no denying that.  What we don’t love is the havoc it wreaks on our skin. Whether the humidity is breeding more oil fields than Texas or the chlorine and salt water are making your skin dry and irritated, nothing makes you wish for Fall faster than a skin temper tantrum. Or, if you’re like me, your skin is a total walking identity crisis — dry and uncomfortable yet still being invaded by blackheads and blemishes. No bueno.

In my constant search to set my bitchy skin right, I was blessed by a publicist who sent me the Zensation Healing and Soothing Mask ($85).  This magical mask instantly talked my skin off the cliff — toning down redness, smoothing, softening, and absorbing oil.  Oh, and it smells like you’re walking through a French garden after the rain. Delicious.

Description: 

Healing & Soothing Mask features several ingredients with soothing and hydrating properties that are ideal for irritated skin. With its rich mixture of Carnuba Wax, Bee’s Wax, Shea Butter, Natural Glycerin and Provitamin B5, the Healing & Soothing Mask  completely moisturzies, softens and smooths delicate skin.  Adding Witch Hazel Floral Water, Buddleja and Masterwort gives the product a wonderful toning and invigorating effect. Lavender Essential Oil and Tea Tree Oil leaves your skin feeling fresh and re-energized.

I recommend this mask at night after a day in the sun and heat.  If you find that you just can’t make time for a mask, wash your face before you shower, apply the mask, and then wash off when you’re done with the shower. The steam will help the ingredients penetrate.  Good luck my lovelies, and don’t let your skin bully you this summer!

 

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Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Uh oh… This Beauty Addict Went on a Beauty Binge! (Part 2)

As you know from last week’s post, my beauty binge at  Veer & Wander, a salon / apothecary in San Francisco, was so ugly I had to break up my beauty spoils into two separate posts.  This week has given me more time to continue testing the products, but my opinions actually didn’t waiver from where I was at least week. (It’s called shopper’s instinct)

So I’m not playing mind tricks on you when I begin my product counting at 4 this week. Do the math. I went through 1-3 last week!

4. RMS BEAUTY – Living Luminizer($38):  This luminizer / highlighter is a total game changer. I banished all my other highlighters to the beauty graveyard when I saw how this ultra-sheer highlighter literally made me look like I had just gotten an oxygen facial.  There is no glitter or shimmering bullshit to make you look like you’re hitting the clubs; it just gives you a touch of light-reflecting glow.  This stuff is so natural-looking I wear it during the day without any other makeup. I can’t help myself! I apply it to the tops of my cheekbones and pull it up to my temples, my brow bones, at my cupid’s bow and a small dab at the center eyelid above the lash to give my eyes a little sparkle.  Oh, and did I mention it’s organic??

Ingredients:
*Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, *Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, *Cera Alba (Beeswax), *Rosmarinus officinalis (Rosemary) Extract, and may contain [+/- Titanium Dioxide CI77891, Mica CI 77019] * Signifies* CERTIFIED ORGANIC

Results: Um, did you read the first paragraph?  The results are I’ve had people compliment my skin wherever I go, and keep in mind I wasn’t wearing any other makeup.  Total game changer.

Verdict: WILL BUY FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE!

Continue reading…

Janna Posted by Tags , , , , , ,
Friday, July 26, 2013

Uh oh… This Beauty Addict Went on a Beauty Binge! (Part 1)

I know you ladies must think I’m jaded now that I get free goodies sent to me  from the publicists. But let’s be realistic here… An addict is an addict.  Do you honestly think I will ever get to a point where I look at my room (that’s right room) full of beauty products and say to myself, “I have enough?”  Please.  As a true beauty addict I simply cannot walk past a Sephora, apothecary or makeup counter without making a purchase.  Sure, I can rationalize “it’s for my job” but we all know that if I was in a completely different profession I would be buying the same amount of products (actually I would be buying more because I wouldn’t be getting any freebies).

I blame my latest beauty binge on my friend Cat.  She wanted to introduce me to her friend Connie McGrath, founder of Veer & Wander, a salon / apothecary in San Francisco.  As soon as we walked in the door of the industrial chic apothecary, I knew I was in trouble. It reminded me of one of my former problem
binge spots — Woodley & Bunny — a Willy Wonka of an apothecary carrying independent brands in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Woodley & Bunny is dangerously located 2 blocks from the subway and I would ALWAYS find myself “stopping in” to see if they had anything new, even though my loft was in the opposite direction. Now that I’m in California I thought I would be safe from such temptation. Right…

Continue reading…

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Thursday, July 18, 2013

Drugstore Cowgirl: Help! I Left for Vacation Without My Makeup Bag!!!

We’ve all been there before… Okay, in all honesty I haven’t been there since the 10th grade, but let’s face it, I’m not the norm.  My good friend Rachel frantically wrote me from vacation saying she in fact had forgotten her makeup bag at home and she needed a drugstore shopping list from me pronto. Rachel had the right idea in replacing her makeup with drugstore finds. The last thing you want to do is spend a ton of money on dupes of department store and Sephora makeup.  And depending on where you’re on vacation, such luxuries may not even be an option.  So don’t panic! I’m going to get you through your vacation:

Foundation: Do you really need foundation on vacation?? Really?  I personally say skip it but if you insist, try L’Oreal Paris True Match Super Blendable Makeup ($10.95) which contains no oils, fragrances, or pore-clogging fillers. It also has skin-loving ingredients like Vitamins A and C, wheatgerm and grape fruit extract. And most importantly, it comes in 33 different shades so you shouldn’t have a problem finding a match.

Continue reading…

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