Aug 102014
 

Skincare Sunday3I’ve been hearing about Charlotte Tillbury’s Magic Cream for so long, and am pleased to report that it is finally coming to the U.S. via Beautylish. There’s a 24-hour pre-order window today if you’d like to reserve one for purchase. Given that the cream has sold out internationally in the past, I suppose that it’s nice to know that yours is reserved. If you miss the window, I’m presuming that the product will be made permanent.

Skincare Sunday7I was fortunate enough to receive a review-sized version as a give from Wayne Goss (thank you Wayne!!). Overall, this is a luxe moisturizing multi-tasker that Charlotte Tillbury has been using on her clients for years. As she says:

The BioNymph Peptide Complex is a unique, patented anti-age ingredient that multi-tasks in the skin, fighting the ageing process on all fronts. It increases collagen & fibre levels, prevents fibre break-down, fights free radicals and stimulates cell energy to reduce the appearance of wrinkles, improve skin elasticity & generally smooth things over.

Sodium Hyaluronate forms a film of hyaluronic acid over the skin to seal in moisture, whilst extracts of Wild Pansy promote the renewal of hyaluronic acid in the skin surface to retain moisture. Skin is plumped-up and youthfully dewy.

A mix of rose hip oil, camellia oil and anti-oxidant vitamin E transforms a grey complexion into hydrated, mirror-shine skin, nourishing Vitamin A helps improves skin firmness and smoothness and energetic Vitamin C is able to promote collagen activity for more youthful skin.

Damask rose water and organic aloe vera stimulate skin regeneration, fighting the signs of ageing, naturally and gracefully.

Extracts of Frangipani, the symbol of eternity, form a soothing, purifying and hydrating comfort-blanket on the skin.

When Charlotte’s Magic Cream is applied to skin, it gives it a fabulous youthful glow.  Really, it’s very pretty by itself and adds a lovely glow under foundation as a primer. It gives a glow comparable to Tom Ford’s Illuminating Primer, but Charlotte’s Magic Cream is richer in texture (meaning that Tom Ford’s feels lighter, and not quite as deeply moisturizing). Certainly, Charlotte’s Magic Cream would work as an overnight moisturizer although with an SFF 15 rating (including UVA protection), it’s clearly geared for daytime wear as well. Tom Ford’s Primer is clearly, well, a primer. The Charlotte’s Magic Cream does have a scent, which is of course quite the norm for luxury products that are born in Europe.

Skincare Sunday8

Overall, now that I’ve been introduced to this lovely cream, I’m going to continue to use this generous sample to look for longer-term results. For now, I would say that anyone with dry skin, or those looking for anti-aging benefits, should investigate this cream. It feels lovely, luxe, and illuminating.  Ingredient list (click to enlarge):

tillbury magic cream ingredients

Skincare Sunday6

This post contains an affiliate link (for more information, see About Cafe Makeup). This product was gifted to Cafe Makeup without charge.

 

Please follow us on....

Aug 052014
 

L'Occitane Frisson de Verveine08L’Occitane has has beautifully refreshing L’Occitane Frisson Verbena collection released this summer, which I’ve been enjoying since taking these pictures a week ago. Actually, some of these have been true saviors in this humid August heat.

L'Occitane Frisson de Verveine01According to the line:

Among all the aromatic herbs that grow along the paths of Provence, there is one whose lemony freshness revives the body and mind. Its name is Verbena. When baskets are piled high with freshly harvested green verbena leaves, its distinctive fragrance fills the air around the markets of Provence. Discover our collection which includes fragrances as well as body and hair care.

I tested the Frisson de Verveine Eau de Toilette ($55), Hand Cream ($12), Fresh Shower Gel ($20), and the Cooling Ice Gel for Legs and Feet ($22).  

L'Occitane Frisson de Verveine14

The Frisson Verbena Eau de Toilette ($55/3.4 oz.) is a very light, soft, yet vibrant lemon and herb scent. The notes include lemon, bergamot, verbena and cucumber. It’s both sophisticated and light, it elevates my mood and reminds me of an afternoon in the beautiful French countryside. It’s more green than lemon, in a lovely way. The heavy glass bottle is a pleasure to use (or to gift).

L'Occitane Frisson de Verveine11

This is a light refreshing spray format, appropriate for putting into the refrigerator overnight for a cooling blast when needed. I found this soft scent lasted a good five or six hours on me.

L'Occitane Frisson de Verveine13

The Frisson Verbena Eau de Toilette comes packaged in a giftable box that is appropriate for either gender.

L'Occitane Frisson de Verveine07

The Frisson Verbena Hand Cream ($12/ 1 oz.) is a light, gel-textured moisturizer that’s heaven to use for a summer manicure/pedicure. It’s mixed with spring water for a light, but very effective, feel. It’s fabulous to put on mid-afternoon, the scent is subtle and very refreshing.

L'Occitane Frisson de Verveine05

The Frisson Verbena Fresh Shower Gel ($20/ 8.4 oz) is, in keeping with the rest of the aesthetic of this line, softly scented.  The feel is similar to other L’Occitane shower gels, it gives only slight foam and feels excellent on the skin. The scent does not linger long after use, so you can apply any of your other scents without interference.

L'Occitane Frisson de Verveine06Like the other products in this line, it is appropriate for either gender. The bottle is a squeeze type which allows the product to flow out easily if held upside down. The size is a generous 8.4 ounces.

frisson verbena

If you are in the mood for a lovely treat, I highly recommend the Frisson Verbena Ice Gel for Legs and Feet ($22/2.5 oz.). This cooling gel applies with a metal application and feels amazing. 

L'Occitane Frisson de Verveine02

The ice gel uses the same scent as the other products in the collection, although its a slight bit more intense in this formula (compared to the hand cream and shower gel). The applicator:

L'Occitane Frisson de Verveine18

This product uses a combination of cypress essential oil and althea officials.  It leaves arms, legs and feet with fresh, cooling moisture. Essentially, it makes your skin look better, has an beautiful fresh scent, and cools you down. Win, win, win. It would be nice if this item were made permanent.

L'Occitane Frisson de Verveine03

This collection is well worth a look. The Eau de Toilette and the Ice Gel were my favorites. Here are some online offers from L’Occitane if you prefer to have anything delivered.

Stride into Summer! Receive FREE tropical sandals with any $35 purchase. Use code TROPICAL. Valid 7/31-8/20/2014.

Getaway to Provence: Enjoy a travel set for $22 with any $45 Purchase! Use code GETAWAY. Valid 7/30-8/19/2014.

Make It A Divine Summer! Recieve a travel ready set FREE with any $125 purchase. Use code DIVINESUMMER! Valid 7/30-8/19/2014.

Softening Summer Shower Gels! Enjoy our Provencal jumbo sized shower gels FREE with any $125 purchase. Use code JUMBO. Valid 7/30-8/19/2014.

L'Occitane Frisson de Verveine15

 This post contains affiliate links (for more information, see About Cafe Makeup). These items were sent by L’Occitane without charge for consideration for review.

Please follow us on....

Jul 112014
 

Tatcha 01aTatcha is an elegant skincare line that does a superb job with everything that I’ve tried. Without exception. They use simple, powerful formulations that are designed to integrate beautifully into one’s life. This philosophy relies on time-tested ingredients, sophisticated science, and the power of natural ingredients derived from the East. The new Tatcha Water Collection is a wonderful addition that is consistent with this intent of the line.

Tatcha 02a

The mainstay of Tatcha’s new Water Collection is the Luminous Deep Hydration Firming Serum ($95/1.0 oz). For me, this serum performed several tasks–it was a lovely moisturizing serum that dried down immediately that was virtually weightless on my skin. Somehow, the product acted as a beautiful makeup base, giving me a lovely, even texture on my skin. In part, this was because (after a minute or two) my skin looked glowing and smooth. The other was because the texture of the product–which is featherweight–provided a wonderful base that seemed to allow my foundation to glide on and stay all day.

Tatcha 0a4

As always, Tacha’s packaging is a luxurious joy  to use. This pump bottle feels like glass, yet seemed to survive several runs in checked luggage unscathed. The serum is clear, and has a very subtle scent that fades quickly.

Tatcha 05a

One pump completely covered my face, although sometimes I used another for neck. Unlike a moisturizer, Tacha’s Luminous Deep Hydration serum is a true serum–the product is light and quickly absorbs. It uses a blend of Okinawa red algae and hyaluronic acid to soothe and firm my skin.  The effects are not immediate, as in “you look in the mirror, your face becomes transformed.” Rather, for me Tatcha’s Luminous serum is cumulative and perceptible over time. After about three days, my 5 pm glance in the mirror told me that my face looked more bright, smoother, and more firm and younger. The longer that I used it, the strong the effect became.

Tatcha 06a

Ingredient list (click to enlarge):

Tatcha 09
Although you might think that the serum is enough, you must, must, must try the Tatcha Luminous Deep Hydration Revitalizing Eye Mask ($12 for one/ $95 for 10). This is the very best eye mask that I’ve ever used., including those I’ve received from spas.

Tatcha 12

The mask comes in two parts, in a foil packet that infuses the clear liquid into the mask.

Tatcha 17The foil packet is travel friendly, but after the first time use I can see integrating this into a weekly home routine.

Tatcha 20

The masks simply sit around the eye area. I got lost in a writing project, and left them on for about twenty minutes. There is not a hint of harshness, rather there is a feeling of hydration and freshness.

Tatcha 22Afterwards, my eye area felt tightened, toned and hydrated in a “you look in the mirror, your face becomes transformed” kind of way. The effect lasted well into the next day, even a bit into a third day. Really, incredible. Must try, and with the $12 version sold separately, that is easy to do without making a large investment.

Tatcha 19

Overall, both Tacha items are a beautifully formulated, effective, and integrate beautifully into my current beauty routine. Truly some of the best, most thoughtful of the skincare collections.  These are available at Tacha online. Although the eye mask is currently sold out (sob!) , it should be re-stocked soon. Also, the line is carried at Barneys although these items do not appear to be stocked yet I am hopeful that they will be soon.

Eye Mask and Water Serum 2

These items were sent to Cafe Makeup without charge for consideration for review. This post contains affiliate links (for more information, see About Cafe Makeup)

Please follow us on....

Jul 102014
 

L'Occitane L'huile essentualle1L’Occitane’s Angelica line is, well, angelic in my book. Lately, I’ve been testing L’Occitane Angelica Hydra Vita Gel ($38/1.7 oz.). This particular product fills a serious need in the beauty world–a beautiful, fresh, gel moisturizer that is perfectly appropriate for all skin types, but particularly useful for combination and oily skin. This moisturizer is so refreshing and cooling, it’s perfect for summer mornings and evenings. It feels delicious.

L'Occitane L'huile essentualle2I just spent two weeks in the dry, hot mountain air of Colorado. I used to believe that my “glow in the afternoon” skin didn’t need any moisturizer, until enough people told me that my skin looked dehydrated. After using some serums and moisturizers for a few weeks, I realized how much better my skin looks with some light refreshing moisture. Although I love my creams, in the warm summer months a light gel give the perfect amount of moisture.

L'Occitane L'huile essentualle3

L’Occitane Angelica Hydra Gel felt amazing to start off my day, and after a long day in that very dry climate (made even worse by the hotel air conditioning).  This gel feels naturally cool, and has a very soft light scent that evokes light cucumber and lovely herbs. This gel is from L’Occitane’s Angelica line, which has natural hydrating and revitalizing properties. Unlike some cool gels, Angelica Hydra Gel has no sting of alcohol or harshness of any kind. Rather, it plumps the texture of my skin and felt very soothing, even on irritated skin (don’t ask, but I’ve never gotten off a flight without some problem or other!). It feels lovely on neck, shoulders and arms as well.

L'Occitane L'huile essentualle5L’Occitane Angelica Hydra Gel comes in a generously-sized pot, sealed for freshness, and is a real treat. I wouldn’t want to go through the summer months without it.  Bottom line, highly recommended.

The L’Occintane Angelica Hydra Gel is available on L’Occintane.com. There are some additional L’Occitane online offers on right now as well using these links and codes:

Travel Ready Summer Skincare! FREE Angelica skincare duo of hydrating Toner and Cleansing gel with $45 purchase. Use code ANGELICA. Valid 7/8-7/29/2014.

Receive the Fragrance Trio Sampler for Only $22! Offer valid 7/2-7/29.

Receive a FREE Skincare Travel Gift with any $45 purchase! Offer valid 7/2-7/29.

Receive The Summer Zest Set (Over $40 Value!) for only $22 with any $45 Purchase! Offer valid 7/2-7/29.

Receive a FREE 50ml Shea Cleansing Milk with any $30+ Moisturizer! Use Code: REFRESH. Offer valid 7/2-7/29.

This product was sent to Cafe Makeup without charge for consideration for review. This post includes affiliate links (for more information, see About Cafe Makeup

Please follow us on....

Jun 152014
 

swiss helenere

The Swiss skincare line Helenere is now available to those in the U.S. (register your email to shop the site). Although the line has just launched an international site, the company has a long history of research, development, and licensing of prove ingredients to achieve its mission of offering “highly concentrated, high performance skin care formulas that meet the specific needs of each skin type.”  The high quality line is made in Switzerland, and many of the ingredients are inspired by the Lake Geneva region which is its home.

Helenere Skincare10

The Maitrise du Temps Serum ($51 for a single bottle/$244 for 5-bottle set) is a lightweight serum that is designed for anti-aging. According to the line this is an extra-rich formula “renders its elasticity to the epidermis, and restores firmness and brightness to the skin while re-balancing its hydrolipidic film and diminishing wrinkles.” I found that this was a gently scented, well-formulated serum that (with 2-3 weeks use), left my skin glowing, supple and very pretty. It doesn’t feel oily; rather, this sinks into my skin within a few minutes after application (no breakouts, either).

Helenere Skincare19

There is nothing harsh about this serum–it feels spa-treatment lovely, and my skin looks alive in the morning. Do you know when your skin just doesn’t look supple, or that it doesn’t really have the sheen that you wish it would? That’s what this serum restores. My skin looks more oxygenated, the texture improved, and so it looks younger. I can see why this has been Helenere’s hero product for 25 years.

Helenere Skincare15a

The bottle is a nice 10 ml, which is probably going to give me about four weeks use or more. The small size is airline baggie-friendly. There’s a dropper at the top–it’s very easy to put a drop or three into the palm of your hand. I won’t be getting to a spa anytime soon (and certainly not one on Lake Geneva), but this serum makes my skin look as if I had.

Helenere Skincare12

I also tried the Helenere Ceramide Eyezone ($122/ 30 ml.) This eye treatment is said to diminish wrinkles and dark circles, minimize swelling on the lids, and preserve suppleness and firmness around the eye.

Helenere Skincare01

The generous size of this lightweight treatment invites use around the entire eye–lid, under eye area, all the way up to the brow. The texture feels like a gel, which I prefer because the product sinks in more quickly and does not clog my pores.

Helenere Skincare05The Helenere Eyezone delivered on its promise to keep puffiness away from my eye area, and to keep the area supple and smooth. I suspect that such products must be used for several weeks before the cellular changes become apparent–as it was, I’m very happy with the product and have adopted into my regimen. I love the light feeling, and the overall short-term improvement that it provides, and I’m excited to see whether the long-term benefits manifest.

Helenere Skincare08Overall, Helenere’s international launch is promising. These products seem worthy of the luxury label, if these items are any indication. Please note that the line offers a 20% discount for first purchases with the promotional code PREMIERE (no minimum quantity, no minimum value).

Here are some links to explore the line further:

These products were sent to Cafe Makeup without charge for consideration for review.

 

Please follow us on....