Nars Orgasm Illuminator

NARS Orgasm Illuminator

Anyone that knows me, knows I am the free sample queen! Any sample I get, I put to the test and lots of my favorite products have began as those little samples thrown in my bag. Nars’ Orgasm illuminator is one of them. I am a big fan of Nars and their Orgasm blush and lip gloss, so when I saw this little jewel, I was very eager to try it.

Illuminators are meant to illuminate areas of your face and decolletage. It is thinner in consistency than a cream blush, which makes it easier to blend into skin. I apply this as I would a bronzer — over cheek bones, down the bridge of the nose, chin, forehead, and collar bone. It takes a second to dry, but it is oh so pretty. The color is perfect for every skin tone — it has a gold sheen and is the perfect shade of peach.  My only complaint is the slight orange-y smell, which makes sense because it is an orange-y color. I could have done without it. but it is so pretty, it doesn’t even matter.

One quick tip: Give the tube a little shake to make sure it is all blended before applying. Instant loveliness!

~Vernize Rios

Product Review: Organix Coconut Milk Anti-Breakage Serum

Organix Coconut Milk Serum

Earlier this month I bought Organix Coconut Milk Anti-Breakage Serum 4 oz. at my local Walgreens. I LOVE anything and everything coconut; I’ve heard about its nourishing qualities; and I was desperate to get some moisture back into my hair and shine into my new highlights.

The first thing I noticed is that a little goes a loooong way. I have a feeling this 4oz bottle is going to last me until 2012. I have thick, medium-length hair and one pump was all I needed. You do not want to use too much of this product as it will leave your hair feeling greasy and oily, which is not a good look. I followed the bottle’s directions by applying to damp hair and working it through with my fingers. I then styled my hair as I normally would.

I noticed instantly that my hair had fewer “fly-aways” —  for a curly gal like me, that’s a  godsend! In one of my fancier looks, I used a curling iron on my hair and applied some of the serum afterwards to lock in the curls and add shine. It did exactly what I needed it to do.

As with most serums, it’s a bit sticky and leaves a residue on your hands, so do not use too much too often or it will make your hair greasy. Key ingredients include coconut oil, coconut milk, shea butter, silk amino complex, and egg white proteins.

As long as you follow directions and your hair is in need of moisture, you’ll love this product as much as I do!

-Vernize Rios

OPI Shatter vs. Sally Hansen Crackle Overcoat

black-shatter-opi-nail-polish

I am a nail polish junkie! The newest craze is the crackle topcoat. Started by OPI, and now Sally Hansen has jumped on board. Sally Hansen and I are a match made in lacquer heaven so I absolutely had to try it.

A couple months ago, I paired OPI Black Shatter over a bright yellow and could not be happier. I got compliments left and right. It went on a little matte but nothing a good top coat couldn’t fix. Removal was a little bit tough, but it wasn’t a problem. I loved it and could not wait to Shatter over other shades.

Sally Hansen offers eight distinct shades that I was excited about getting my hands on. I chose the Antique Gold shade with a bright purple base coat figuring it was a good summer neutral that would go with any shade. Unfortunately, my second experience with a crackle top coat was not as fierce as the first. I first noticed the polish consistency. It had clumps, yet was still runny, which I knew from the beginning was not going to be good. The directions stated that a thin or thick coat will do depending on what effect you wanted. I tried both, and neither of them resulted in anything I liked. The thin coat had too much of a fine crackle, which resulted in a streaky unfinished  look. Thick coats looked like a 2 year old painted my nails. I had to actually pull apart the nail polish to aid in the crackle look. I think the downfall was the added metallic element in the Sally Hansen nail polish. There was glitter in the polish, as opposed to the OPI polish which was just color.

I’m sorry Sally, but wherever you are, OPI won this lacquer battle!

What’s your favorite Crackle nail polish? Let us know below!

-Vernize Rios

The Beauty School Student’s Holiday Wish List

lg-baked-beauty

What can you get for that special beauty professional in your life this holiday season, you may ask? Well, check out some makeup, hair, and skin care products that will have every makeup artist, hair stylist, and esthetician in awe that you have such great taste and have paid attention to their career choices! May SpaBeautySchools present to you a beauty school student’s holiday wish list!

For the makeup artist
Every girl needs some great makeup in her life. And whether she’s a makeup artist or makeup junkie, like myself, she’ll appreciate some of these fab finds!

Laura Geller Fresh Baked Beauty Kit
Forget the freshly baked cookies for Santa – be sure to put on a fresh face instead! This makeup kit has got it all. From prep to color to some finishing touches, Laura Geller’s kit is fresh baked goodies for your face. The only things you won’t find in here are the brushes and the mascara. Everything else is right here in this limited edition. Perfect for any girl who loves makeup with great pigment and a pop of color.
• Balance-n-Brighten
• Blush-n-Brighten in Pink Grapefruit
• Baked Marble Eyeshadow Duo in Blue Icing/Coffee Cake
• Baked Cake Eyeliner Duo in Blueberry/Dutch Chocolate
• Lip Gloss in Better than Bare

Fun SpaBeautySchools tip: wet a thin eyelining brush before you apply this eyeliner to get the richest color and the potential for fabulous cat eyes!

Retail value: $115, but it’s available at Sephora and QVC.com for $60.

Cargo Holiday Nights
Perfect for a night out on the town and certainly a New Year’s party, Cargo’s Holiday Nights kit sparkles for sure to give you that holiday glow. You’ll find the entire kit in a brightly colored cloth box with a mirror, which makes it perfect for on-the-go application and even travel during this busy holiday season. It’s real easy to throw in your carry-on or purse!
• Holiday Nights Eye Shadow Quad
• Blush
• Boogie Nights™ Eye Pencil in Silver
• Face & Body Sparkle

Fun SpaBeautySchools tip: use the shadow quad in here to get a nice smoky eye effect, using the blue in the outer corner and the white in the inner corner. Love it!

Retail value: $90, but it’s available at Sephora for just $25!

For the hair stylist
There are lots of tools that a hair stylist will use throughout the day so it’s important that they get them just right. And if you want to get a salon-like look, then you’ll need the right instruments to perfect your holiday image.

ProSilk Golden Flat Iron
To give your hair a natural, healthy glow, the ProSilk Golden flat iron is perfect. It heats up in just seven seconds to a whopping 435 degrees! It’s small enough to use for travel and easy to clean. It’s also lightweight, which makes it very simple to use at any time, especially for those non-morning people who need a quick fix as they get ready for a productive workday.

Available at ProSilkProd.com for $79.95.

For the esthetician
To an esthetician, the face is a very important part of the body. Perfecting the canvas you already have is important so that you look and feel your best. This is part of an esthetician’s job.

Prescriptives Intensive Rebuilding Quartet
All wrapped up in a nice silver cosmetic bag, the Px Intensive Rebuilding Quartet is great for anyone who needs a little moisture in their life – even the oiliest of faces can benefit from these dermatologist-recommended products. This is definitely perfect for travel because of the travel-sized products that include all things necessary to keep your face pretty!
• Full-size Intensive Rebuilding Eye Cream
• Travel-size Intensive Rebuilding Moisturizer
• Travel-size Intensive Rebuilding Deep Hydrating Mask
• Travel-size Intensive Rebuilding Moisture-Rich Cleanser

Retail value: $124.50, but it’s available on Prescriptives.com for $65.

For the green-conscious beauty professional
Speaking of green products, some may choose to have completely environmentally-safe products in their makeup kits. This way they don’t hurt the Earth, nor themselves.

Suki Winter Skin Hydration Kit
We all know that winter is a time for dry skin, chapped lips, and flaking so why not give your face and body the moisture it deserves. Prepare yourself (or your gift receiver) for the winter season with this kit that contains organic products that don’t have chemicals or synthetic materials.
• butter cream healing salve
• velvet moisturizing cream
• lip repair butter
• 100% organic cotton sateen travel case.

Retail value: $30, but it’s available on sukipure.com for $15.

Happy Holidays!!
-Amanda Fornecker