LUSH Brazened Honey Mask

November 2, 2009

I love Sundays! Besides the fact that they’re officially dubbed my “lazy days”, they’re also my beauty “freshen-up” days. After slacking off on my regime during the week due to fatigue, I always make sure to save some time on Sunday to tend to what I’ve missed out on. One of the essential skincare items that I absolutely cannot (and should not) do without is a face mask. After a tough past few weekends, I’ve missed a few Sundays here and there and have definitely seen the difference. Applying a face mask is unlike any other way to pamper, soothe, and treat one of our most important features!

I actually ran out of my Fresh Umbrian Clay mask and have been debating whether or not to repurchase it. It’s been great at controlling my breakouts and calming my skin, but not great enough to warrant the $48 price tag. Always on the lookout for a fun new mask to try, I figured I could definitely find something else… and something else I did find!

I stopped by the Beverly Hills LUSH store after grabbing brunch today and stumbled upon their fresh bar of concoctions. LUSH offers tubs of freshly made face masks aimed at a variety of skin remedies. I felt like each mask spoke to me in a different way and it took quite a while to decide on the Brazened Honey mask. Aimed at exfoliating and brightening tired skin (goodbye dull skin!), the added promise of tightening pores was just a bonus feature that sold me. This product reminds me a lot of the Mario Badescu Almond & Honey Scrub (which I LOVE) that I have so often dabbed on as a calming mask. However, since this is actually formulated to act as a mask, it also had the kick of really cleaning out my pores. Like with the MB scrub, I scrubbed my face beforehand while applying it and then again, by mixing the dried mask with warm water while removing it. After a quick 15 minute application, my face felt soft, smooth and balanced (not too dry and not too oily). Some people have said that the thick consistency of the product has made it difficult to apply, but I didn’t find any problems with this at all. It was a little tough to remove since it’s so chunky, but I like that I could really massage it around my face while taking it off.

Since they’re made free of preservatives, each $5.95 tub is supposed to last 2 weeks. I’ve been reading reviews and customers claim that they’ve been able to use the masks up to a month since the products are kept refrigerated. This makes more sense since there’s way too much product to use up that quickly so we’ll see how good it stays into the month. Since I picked up the BB Seaweed mask as well, I’m probably in for some trouble in finishing both up within the month–I got too excited and didn’t think this through at the time.

As an added plus, for every 5 containers you return to the store for recycling, you get one free mask of your choice! I think this will definitely keep me coming back for more. Other notable items to purchase (per my best friend who’s obsessed with LUSH): Coalface Cleanser, Ocean Salt Cleanser, and any of their solid shampoo bars (which are equal to 3 bottles of 250ml shampoo bottles!). I’ve officially discovered another beauty obsession. Eeeeek.

Protect Your Neck

January 31, 2009

I’m currently working for a client quite a ways from home and have been living out of a hotel for the past 2 weeks. Due to the recession, of course, the luxury of staying at a 4-star hotel and having a room of my own is definitely out of reach. Thus, I’ve been sharing a room with two other girls. Spending day after day together while working more than we’d like to has made for all kinds of conversation. Being a bit younger than the others, I’ve been learning a lot!

The other day, one of the girls (aged 24) read aloud an IM her friend had sent her. “Do you use a special type of cream for your neck?” My other coworker (aged 27) quickly exclaimed the necessity of protecting that largely exposed part of our bodies. I’ve never even thought about using a real neck cream before. Do those even exist?

Apparently, they do–and for good reason. According to bestselling author Nora Ephron, “The neck is a dead giveaway. Our faces are lies and our necks are the truth.” I’ve always hated my own neck. I believe I was born with the most indented necklines a child could ever have and they are only getting worse with age. I can’t believe I’ve never thought about treating and preventing this! I did a quick search online and found that there are many choices. Here are my top picks:

1. LUSH Mirror Mirror Moisturizer ($21.95): I’ve heard nothing but great things about LUSH and this neck and decolletage cream seems to have won many over with its results. Aside from being very affordable, it seems to actually work! I love that it comes in a pump packaging and according to those who have tried it, the cream provides great moisture, scent, and can even be used as a face and eye cream due to its firming benefits. I’ll be sure to check this one out the next time I’m at the mall.

2. L’Oreal Advanced RevitaLift for Face and Neck ($15.99): L’Oreal is one of the largest cosmetic companies in the world and I’m sure their R&D department is as promising as any department store brand’s (after all, they do own Lancome and Shu Uemura). I haven’t tried any of L’Oreal’s anti-aging products as I’ve been loyal to my Olay Regenerist cream, but this anti-wrinkle cream might make me do a switch-over.

3. bliss an ounce of prevention ($48): If you’re looking to spend a bit more money, I’d go with this Bliss moisturizer. This is not specifically meant for the neck as the other two products, but it should be just as good. It’s part of a line of anti-aging products developed by the spa line and appears to be packed with top-quality ingredients.