Nov 072012
 

I’ve been living out of suitcases for a while now, trying to balance my beauty goods on the corner of tiny bathroom ledges and stock up on travel sized luxuries. I thought I’d do a quick “Loving Right Now” for a few items that are making life on the road a little easier. I’m really looking forward to the end of the project in a few weeks so that I can cocoon at home and spread out.

1. Travel sized Caudalie Divine Oil ($18/Sephora) and L’Occitane Eau Essentielle Immortelle  mini-spray ($13ish). The full review of this mini-travel Caudalie Divine Oil is here, one of my discoveries in Paris this summer. How delightful that our local Sephora stores carry this wonderful, moisturizing oil in a travel size. I keep one in my desk at work as well, to moisturize my hands and nails throughout the day.

I occasionally stop by any nearby L’Occitane boutique and ask them whether they have any tiny sprays.  Usually, they have a stock of them in the back, former limited editions that haven’t sold out yet. These are wonderful for bringing on flights to add moisture mid-flight. The types of waters and toners varies by season, so do ask. These little in-flight luxuries make those delays much nicer. By the way, this Eau Essentielle Immortelle is a wonderfully moisturizing spray for the dry winter air.

 2. Paul Mitchell Awapuhi Wild Ginger Moisturizing Lather Shampoo and Paul Mitchell Wild Ginger Keratin Intensive Treatment (roughly $20 each on Amazon.com and salons). I know, Paul Mitchell–it’s been years since I’ve thought anything in the line was worth exploring. Hear me out. 

My salon gave me a Wild Ginger treatment, which is a professional treatment. My hair was remarkably softer and smoother, and the stylist suggested that I maintain the look with the Wild Ginger Shampoo and Keratin Intensive Treatment. They are fabulous! They really leave my hair much more moisturized, softer and smoother than my more expensive home cleansers and treatments. They smell gingery too–very pleasant! Even though it was weeks since my in-salon treatment, I found these two products were worth checking out.

3. Perricone MD Formula 15 Serum  ($125). The original review for this product is here. That same evening that I published the review of the bottle sent by Perricone MD without charge to me, my bottle took a dive off of my tiny hotel bathroom ledge. Hysteria ensued. Now I’ve purchased my own. Awesome treatment for tightening, lifting, and generally youth-ifying. I love this and wish they made it in a great big bucket.  A plastic one.

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Jun 262012
 

The French skin care line Caudalie has just released the Caudalie Divine Oil ($48/3.4 oz/ 100 ml.). This is a dry oil that can be used on hair, body and face, and is intended to moisturize. This is a blend (grape, hibiscus, sesame and argan) combined with Caudelie’s own anti-oxidant polyphenols.

According to the company, grape oil is particularly good for skin in the long term–“A priceless treasure from the vine, grape oil contains a high concentration of Omega 6 and vitamin E which gives it nourishing and regenerative properties.” I’ve been reading up on free radicals and antioxidants lately, and whew! To summarize, free radicals are not our friends.

This oil is being heavily promoted in Paris right now, many of the pharmacies have large poster-boards and prominent displays. That makes sense. Dry oils are particularly nice for summer, when more skin is showing and a pleasant, moisturized glow is the best accessory. For me, the best time to apply Caudalie Divine Oil is right after bathing or showering. Those who are out in the sun will find it very soothing. Also, I like to use it as a hand moisturizer–I find using a dry oil on my nails and cuticles keeps them moisturized and healthy. When I’m not wearing nail polish, the oil gives my nails a little glow.

If you haven’t used a dry oil before, you might find the concept of putting oil on your hands a little counterintuitive. Keep in mind that a dry oil is designed to absorb into skin quickly, emphasis on the word “dry.” It can actually feel much lighter and more pleasant than many hand cremes, which sometimes can feel a bit heavy or waxy. The oil leaves the skin with a pretty glow that looks like natural, healthy skin.

This dry oil feels very rich, and a light coating absorbs nicely in under five minutes. There is a pleasant fragrance, not unlike the Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse. I’m sure there are Caudalie and Nuxe fans that find subtle differences, but the similarity was there for me. The scent is far less strong that scented dry oils, such as those released periodically from Tom Ford.

Unlike the Nuxe dry oil, Caudalie has a spray top which is nice for doing hair and body. For the face, I spray a bit into my hands before touching on. Also, note that Caudalie has a generous 3.4 ounces per bottle while Nuxe’s is labeled as half as much product (Caudalie with 100 ml, and Nuxe at 50 ml).

U.S. buyers (particularly those outside of Manhattan) are likely to find Caudalie’s easier to obtain. It’s currently available on Caudalie’s website, and  now comes with a free Des Vignes fragrance with the code DIVINE.

Bottom line–highly useful, really delivers. Would love to see this is in an airline-friendly 1 ounce version for those heading off for distant beaches, or business travelers who want on-the-road luxury with an all-in-one skin and hair moisturizer.

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