I apologize ab out not updating my blog. I’ve been sick and really in no place to trust my sniffer. I’m feeling better and I’m trying to catch up.

Ligne St. Barth Vanilla Body Lotion is really a product for the vanilla lover. This is more of an “oceanic” vanilla. It is sweet and tropical with hints of salt water. This is definitely a vanilla scent. It’s sweet but not as sweet as other vanilla scents on the market that are trying to resemble baked goods. This is a nice tropical vanilla. It reminds me a of a vanilla scented tanning lotion. You get a whiff of salty sea air with this lotion. I think that is what makes it special.

The formula is rich but thin in consistency. It needs  rubbed in throughly. It leaves a shiny residue on the skin that resembles the appearance of oiled skin. (It has a rich avocado oil base and you can tell). This looks amazing on bare legs. I do think when the weather gets warmer that I will use this product as a “leg sheen”. It really adds a nice “glow” to my legs and it smells nice. It makes my legs look like they’ve been “oiled” but it doesn’t leave that kind of mess.

The scent of this lotion mixes well with all vanilla based scents. I’ve worn it with Prada EDP, various La Maison de la Vanille EDTs, Susanne Lang Vanilla Coconut EDP, and even Guerlain Shalimar EDP.  The scent of this lotion “enhances” the vanilla in other fragrances.

It’s a pricey lotion but it is a hard to find luxury product. I’m sure you could find something cheaper like it but I don’t have to explain the luxury market to you. This lotion comes in 2 sizes. It retails for $47 for the 6.8 oz. and $34 for the 4.2 oz. It’s available at beautyhabit.com.

Weekly Cheap Secret:

I love these little old school highly fragranced body lotions. I hope Avon realizes that this “retro” packaging is what sells these Perfumed Skin Softeners. Well, at least it does for me. I like to have them out, there isn’t a logo, a label. They are just in a “sphere”. They really look nice in a boudoir. They retail for about $5 and are frequently on sale for about 99¢ on Avon’s website.

Candid is a nice fragrance for those that like a classic late 70’s floral oriental type fragrance. I love a late 70’s oriental. It’s a dated blend of heady jasmine, red roses, woodsy but feminine sandalwood with vetiver. It manages to smell “fresh” and clean, I guess because of the vetiver. The scent isn’t very complex. It’s all blended together to make a feminine, fresh oriental scent. I find that it does mix well with pure fragrance oils of any of the scents mentioned above. I love to wear it with either jasmine or rose to bring out the feminine quality. I can make it more masculine and zesty fresh with a spritz of L’Aromarine Vetyver or Guerlain Vetiver. Since the product is heavily scented, I can still smell it wearing very closely to my skin after all day wear.

The lotion is thick but not buttery. I still find that at night I need to apply a heavier cream to keep from being ashy in the winter. I just use this skin softener for the nostaligic novelty. And it does wear nicely with fragrance oils and some of my more “classic” fragrances.

We all know that sun damage is no good. I’m not going there. If you are even reading this blog, you know that. When I lived in Tennessee and had a 4 hour commute to work daily, I was a huge fan of body lotions and hand creams that contained a SPF. I was getting tons of sun exposure just from driving, not to mention my other daily activities. I still experienced a change of color but never burned. I really hope that using a product with a SPF helped with any future damage as well. Now that I live in Washington, I only see the sun for 3 months out of the year. I no longer have a long commute. I only use these products during the summer here. The rest of the year I have a vitamin D deficiency. Docs here advise not to wear sunscreen during these “rainy” months. In the summer I’ll get my 15 minutes of sun exposure and use these moisturizers. I usually go for the cheaper ones with a SPF of 15 or lower. They do their jobs.

Bargain Body Lotions (under $20): If you want SPF, shimmer, and gradual self-tanner, try Avon Skin So Soft Satin Glow Ultimate Body Moisturizing Lotion SPF 15. It is a “do it all” product that retails for $12. Victoria’s Secret Bare Bronze Sheer Tinted Body Lotion with SPF 15 (not pictured) has a sexy bronze shimmer and warm, nutty scent. It goes for $18. Vaseline Aloe Fresh Protecting Body Lotion with SPF 15 retails for $8. It is light-weight and a bargain. I am a fan of Palmer’s products. Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Body Lotion with SPF 15 has a rich cocoa scent and rich moisturizers. It retails for $8. I mainly use Eucerin Everyday Protection Body Lotion with SPF 15. It is light-weight and fragrance free. It goes for $10. I also like Nivea Body Natural Tone Body Lotion with SPF 4 (there is also a hand cream in this line). The fragrance does not interrupt with my fragrances. It goes for $7. Aubrey Organics Unscented Body Lotion with SPF 15 is nice. There is no odor but it does need to be rubbed in a little bit more. It retails for about $13. Alba Botanica Very Emollient Daily Shade Body Lotion with SPF 16 is rich and makes the skin look younger with alpha hydroxy acids. It’s a pretty awesome product and retails for $16.

More Expensive Body Lotions: Kiehl’s Creme de Corps Light-Weight SPF 30 body lotion is very nice for summer. It is light-weight and has a higher sun protection which means that you can stay out in that summer sun longer. It retails for $26.50. Juice Beauty Green Apple SPF 20 Body Moisturizer contains fruit acids to help skin look younger while protecting skin. It retails for $29. MD Skincare Firming Body Lotion with Vitamin C and SPF 8 (not pictured) is a nice fix and protect product that goes for $42. Glytone Body Lotion with SPF 15 exfoliates skin and moisturizes it with shea butter and glycolic acid. (Probably needs a SPF so you don’t get burned). It retails for $44, but it does come in a big bottle. Clarins Bright Plus Breezy Cool Body Lotion with SPF 30 helps skin feel cool/fresh, helps with discolorations and protects. The texture and feel is very nice for summer. It retails for $40. Duwop Revolution Body Moisturizer contains tint, shimmer, and a SPF of 15. This product looks great on legs. It retails for $25 and comes in a few shades.

Hand Cream: Borghese Radiant Lightening Hand Cream contains SPF 30. This product moisturizes, help fight discolorations, and help prevent any further damage. It goes for $15. Shiseido Benefiance Protective Hand Revitalizer with SPF is a rich cream perfect for daily use. It isn’t greasy and it retails for $37. Clarins Age Control Hand Lotion with SPF 15 is very moisturizing. It does have a strong scent and retails for $30. I really like Kiehl’s Unusually Rich But Not Greasy At All Hand Lotion with SPF 10. It is what the name implies and goes for $15.50. Studio Gear Handiwork Protective & Brightening Cream with SPF 25 retails for $22.50. It’s a rich cream that helps lighten discolorations on the hands. There is Erno Lazlo Intensive Hand Cream with SPF 25. I’ve used this one and it goes for $55. It’s lightweight, so I had to apply frequently. Natura Bliss Hand Silk Cream with SPF 15. This product claims to be waterproof which is really nice since we wash our hands throughout the day. It retails for $32. Lippman Collection Rich Girl Hand & Cuticle Cream with SPF 25 hydrates, protects, and brightens without bleaching. It goes for $24.

Just because a product has a higher number doesn’t mean it is better or more efficient. I really don’t think those high number products are necessary for daily wear or at least for my lifestyle. I only get about 30-60 minutes (that’s being very liberal) of direct sun exposure daily 3 months of the year. I burn at over 30 minutes of sun exposure with no SPF. If I am going to be out for a few hours I will use a longer wearing sunscreen product. With the hand creams, I apply those throughout the day due to frequent hand washing.

Oh, geez. Our brains are going to fry here in the Northwest today. We are experiencing temps in the three digits. I have no air conditioning and I have to be out of the rental home this Friday, so I’m moving all my stuff. Ughh, SPF is the least of my worries right now!

spflotions

Weekly Cheap Secret:

This is one of those great drugstore products. Basically, it is the perfect summer moisturize. It is a lightweight lotion, not greasy and not very moisturizing either but really all I need during the summer when I sunscreen up anyways 😦 But, I must add that I am used to body oil and goopy body butters. That is my disclaimer. It is faintly scented. That doesn’t stick around at all so you can wear whatever fragrance you desire without your moisturizer getting in the way. Don’t worry this does not have that Original Jergen’s scent 🙂 What I love about this lotion is the shimmer. It has tons of tiny, finely milled gold shimmers. It looks amazing on tanned skin, any complexion really, because it “warms” it up. You are supposed to wait a few minutes before dressing because the shimmer may transfer on to clothes. I find myself impatient and rushed once I get out of the shower. Sometimes I dress immediately. I have gotten this on my clothes but it was no biggie. It washed out in the laundry and did not permanently stain. I somehow leave a glitter trail no matter where I go, so this didn’t bother me. If you let this dry, it will not budge. That is great. You will be shimmery all day! Do wash your hands unless you want gilded palms! I love to use this on my legs, everywhere, it really works with my complexion. I like it so much better than Michael Kors Leg Shine, which smells great but doesn’t give me a natural glow.

It’s a bummer because I can’t find this at any of the drugstores or superstores anymore. I order it from drugstore.com and it seems that many ladies are having this problem too. I hate that just because I hope it isn’t being discontinued because it is one of the best shimmer products on the market. I also read that a reviewer mixes this with body cream. That is a great idea. This is a little costly for a drugstore product and that will stretch it and it is hard to find. (I have been known to ration this product and only wear it when I know I will be showing some skin). Also you can customize how much moisture you need. It goes for about $7.50 for 7.5 ounces. I wish they would focus on this moisturizer again and stop coming out with all of those Natural Glow products, this is all I need!

I really hate to rip on a product because I know we all have our opinions and if there is something that I don’t like then there is somebody out there that loves it. But, this product is not good and I don’t see anybody loving it. Nature’s Gate Organics Rainwater Lotion retails for $8.99 for 8 ounces. That’s a pretty expensive lotion compared to other drugstore products. I was attracted to this product because I have been in a real patchouli oil mixed with bergamot oil mood. It has a fresh and earthy vibe. I find that very nice for summer. The odor of this product isn’t too bad but it isn’t too great. It is heavy on the bergamot in an acidic, kinda laboratory way. I don’t hate the fragrance. It actually mixes nicely with the L’Aromarine oils that I wear (bergamote and patchouli). The fragrance from the lotion doesn’t linger around very long. This lotion is all organic and stuff. It even claims to have organic essential oils. The bottle has a sob story printed on it. It says something like I don’t have “to give up anything except for guilt”. I don’t even understand what that means. And that “this unique lotion is good for me and for the planet”. I didn’t know that my lotion could have such an impact on the globe…Anyways, we all know that that kind of stuff goes hand in hand in the organic market for some reason people try to convince me to feel guilt for no reason all the time. But, Nature’s Gate should feel guilty, not me. They should feel guilty for putting a price on such a sub par product. It is called Rainwater for a reason. It has the texture of rainwater and looks like it too. It is so runny that if you pump it on your hands or body it immediately leaks everywhere and makes a mess. Actual rainwater is more moisturizing than this stuff. This dries the heck out of my skin and makes it feel ouchy and tight. Oh, the second ingredient is organic alcohol. It dries my skin out so badly that I would be better off not using a product at all. It is cooling, that’s a bonus in the summer I guess. I thought my skin was exaggerating or was in shock because I use heavy products most of the time. I talked my husband into giving it a try because it smells good, I said.  My husband used some of this and he couldn’t stop complaining of the “tightness” and that his skin felt sticky. It does feel sticky. He won’t even use this and he doesn’t even know cheap stuff from expensive stuff.

So if you want a sticky, expensive lotion that dries your skin out until you have little lines everywhere with an OK smell that doesn’t make you feel guilty becuase it is organic, then give this a try. I dare you to try to like it.

weekly cheap secret, maybe?

My lesson: You get what you pay for. This isn’t a horrible product, it is just isn’t as good as other products on the market such as Clarins or Vichy.

I am a cellulite cream addict. Not because I really need it, but because I like the “firming” feelings. I have used so many in the past. They all “work”, temporarily that is. They all mainly tighten and firm or make the skin tingle for 5 minutes to try to convince you that it works. But, these creams do work. They stop working once you stop using them. So I am a fan of these creams especially if you know you are going on a bikini wearing vacation, etc. But, I don’t have moon craters or an extreme case of cellulite. I’m just jiggly and use these creams to firm the skin a little bit.

Anyways, I thought I would give a drugstore brand a try since Lancome, Clarins, Vichy, Estee Lauder, and all that jazz can be expensive. St.Ives Cellulite Gel Creme retails for $8 for 6.7 ounces. It has a nice texture: a gel creme. It is light and refreshing. It feels almost like a silicone based hair serum but it is not greasy and is super fast absorbing. It almost absorbs like a powder. It has a fruity citrus fragrance that isn’t offensive and doesn’t hang around. It just smells fresh. It contains many of the ingredients of the more expensive creams: green tea, caffeine, citrus extracts, menthol, etc. It has a nice texture and an OK fragrance. It claims that you “can feel it working”, I assume this must mean that it tingles. I haven’t had that at all. I’m used to my industrial strength products that “tingle” the cellulite demons out of your skin. So, for me it doesn’t burn, tingle, any of that. I don’t have a problem with that. My beef is that I haven’t seen a difference. I mean, I feel no firming at all. I can skip an application without noticing any negative effects. This is just a lightweight toning lotion in my opinion. That Jergen’s firming lotion does the same as this except it is heavier. This is lightweight and may make a nice “lotion” for the entire body in the summer. It isn’t’ a horrible product it is just an extremely “mild” product in contrast to what I usually use. It may work for you. I find that these products are like lip plumpers, everybody has their favorite.

I know I could live without cellulite creams at all. I don’t really need them. We all know that diet and exercise and being skinny is what really diminishes cellulite. We also know that we can be more prone to it because of heredity just like stretch marks. I also know, from doing makeup for photoshoots that skinny bitches has a few body dimples as well. No cream is going to rid these flaws. I just like the temporary firming feeling. Nobody really sees my body. I do it for myself. And I like to waste money on stupid things…

Pacifica body butters are pretty nice. They are smooth and not heavy. This means that it is very easy to rub in and it acutally absorbs. It moisturizes and is fragrant. There are many fragrances to choose from (from girly lilac to foody cocoa to lusty sandalwood and everything in between). I’ve tried a few and I liked them all. Let me warn you, do sniff before buying (I did), especially if you are going by the scent of the solid perfume or fragrance spray.  The body butters can smell very different from the actual perfumes. The fragrance of the butters are more to work with fragrances. It will not be a dead on twin (I’m definately thinking of Avalon Juniper here). It will help to make the other fragrances by Pacifica last and appear more “complex” and well rounded.  These claim to contain natural ingredients and are in a shea butter, almond, and safflower oil base. Very nice. Plus, they represent the Pacific. I love the West coast. Just love it.  They retail for $18 for 8 ounces.  Sephora carries a few from this line, the entire line is available at the company’s website, www.pacificaperfume.com. I love the Fig. It can be worn with any of your favorite fig scents.

Sorry for the lack of postings. I’ve been on spring break. You know enjoying Seattle’s cold and rainy spring days 🙂 Anyways….

This is a pretty good body butter. It is thick and moisturizing but not greasy at all. It doesn’t feel like it is “on” the skin. I like it as a heavy moisturizer for warmer climates. It doesn’t linger or feel oily. It claims to be fragrance free, but there is a fragrance. However, it isn’t a gross or chemical fragrance that is often used to disguise a products occurring fragrance. It is nice and clean and super faint. The fragrance fades very quickly once the butter is massaged into the skin. It is a bit pricey. It is $23.50 for 6.7 ounces. However, a little goes a long way and a tub of this can last longer than most liquid lotions this size. It does moisturize and leaves the skin moisturized all day. The fragrance doesn’t interfere with other fragrance products you may wear. (See I am trying to justify spending this much on a body butter when I know there are great drugstore body butters on the market.) And Clinique does offer GWPs. So I’ve justified it.

First things first, I am not a fan of Bath and Body Works. I find many of their fragrances boring and well, artificial and I can usually find somewhere else to spend my money. However, I do like some of their fragrances. I find them simple and layerable. Vanilla Bean Noel has been one of my B&BW guilty pleasures since 2004. I’m not a huge fan of gourmand fragrances but they do have a time and a place. Cooler weather makes me want to wear richer fragrances even if they smell like baked goods. Every year I buy the Vanilla Bean Noel body lotion by the time I am finished with the bottle I am finished with the fragrance. It’s limited edition. Vanilla Bean Noel is a vanilla fragrance, but it isn’t too cake batter-ish. It kind of smells like creme brulee because it has a burnt sugar note. Pretty much the fragrance is French Vanilla with a burnt caramel note. It is simple but complex because it isn’t straight up vanilla. I love to layer it under my fave fragrances such as Prada, L’Aromarine oils like Oppanaux, and Le Maison de Vanille fragrances. This scent doesn’t fight other perfumes. The scent is rich and comforting but not too juvenile. I haven’t used any of the other products in the line such as the body wash or body spray. I just like the richness of the lotion. It is very moisturizing and I like the smell. It is great for winter. I wish it didn’t have such an annoying name. The bonus is that this stuff goes dirt cheap after Christmas because of its annoying name. Currently, it retails for $11.

I love this now classic fragrance. I find the fragrance EDT spray a little too “intoxicating” for everyday wear. That is why I wear Yves Saint Laurent Opium Body Moisturizer which retails for $50 and is available and macys.com. It is a lightly moisturizing lotion packed with the classic incense fragrance of Opium. The initial notes are of that of a strong, warm, and  citrusy tangerine. This keeps the fragrance from smelling too “dark”. It then continues with the spicy notes of coriander and cloves. It is mixed with strong floral notes of syrupy rose and crisp lily of the valley. It eventually dries down to a warm and resiny myrrh, opoponax, and earthy cedarwood. It is a lovely complex and passionate fragrance that always gets me compliments. The fragrance in the body moisturizer is very long lasting. I can go to sleep at night wearing it and wake up the next day still smelling like seductive Opium. I can put it on in the morning and come home after work and still smell spicy. I love it even though I don’t love the price 🙂 This fragrance is such high quality and this is why women everywhere years and years later can still ask for something named after a pre-heroin drug and still feel like a nice person. Oh, I’m so happy it made it through the scandal!


Opium Perfume for Women Eau De Toilette Spray 3.3 Oz by Yves Saint Laurent

From: BigDiscountFragrances.com