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The Idiot’s Guide To Applying Eye Makeup

idiot's guide to eye makeup application

Having done the makeup of thousands of women over the years, I can say with authority that most women have no idea how to apply eye makeup. I hear it from every woman I work on and see it firsthand when they sit in my makeup chair. They are either:

  • unclear what looks good on them and how to apply it so they do little or nothing OR
  • have a set routine that they do every day that is not flattering…yet they don’t know it’s not flattering!

How We Get Stuck in Bad Makeup Routines

Often, women will be attached to a liquid liner, or some kind of frosty shadow combination that they apply every day without fail, and have no idea how to break the cycle – or that they even need to break the cycle! At one point or another, many women had a department store makeover. Usually, the amount of colors used during this makeover – and inability of the salesperson to teach them how to duplicate the look at home – results in a half-baked makeover attempt that is utterly lacking, yet still becomes a woman’s routine for the next 10 years.

Keep it Simple

I am shocked that most women who apply lots of shadow seem to think it looks good, when more often than not, it actually makes them look worse. This, in my opinion, is why most men don’t like makeup. They see so many women applying makeup heavy-handedly in all the wrong places, using all the wrong colors and all the wrong tools. I always wonder why no one tells these women that their makeup is wrong and making them look older and/or desperate and/or or cheap. Especially older women, who seem to be especially stuck in their ways and don’t know who to trust to help them update their look.

One of the biggest obstacles is that there are waaaay too many options out there, leaving a lot of room for error. If you go into a store, you have to trust the salesperson that is picking the colors for you. I am shocked when I walk through the enormous makeup department at Bergdorf Goodman and see so many salespeople, who badly need makeovers themselves, giving makeovers to customers! Who do you trust? If you do get lucky and have a talented makeup artist doing your makeover, you are then faced with a multitude of colors, brushes, not to mention a huge bill, if you have the courage to attempt the look yourself at home. Maybe you spring for just one of the shadows, or just the liner. Then when applying the makeup at home, you wish you had spent the money on all the products because you loved looking that good and feel hopeless that you’ll ever be able to recreate the look yourself.

Enter Paint By Number Eyeshadow Kit

It is with these issues in mind that I created my Paint by Numbers Eyeshadow Kit.  It will be featured on The Today Show on January 26th! This eyeshadow kit comes with a makeup palette containing 6 shadows, all numbered 1, 2, or 3. There’s a row for daytime and a row for night. It also comes with 3 brushes, also numbered 1, 2, and 3, and a foolproof diagram showing you exactly where each color goes. I have created the perfect base, crease, and liner colors that work on all skin types, tones and eye colors.

An Eyeshadow Palette That Works for Everyone

My client’s loyalty, rave reviews and amazing looking eyes prove the concept works. It is so important that a base color not be too light, too dark, too pink or too peach. You want it to be the perfect base to make the eye open and pop, without making lids look wrinkled. The crease colors I created are more like blush colors, kind of a soft champagne bronze that opens the eye but doesn’t distract from your natural beauty. The shadow liners I created also compliment all eye colors, work with anything in your wardrobe and make you look younger and more vibrant. I sold these same shadows separately for years before creating the kit, and every woman I put them on would buy them. I would always draw the diagram, and write exactly which brush to use. A lot of times they would say they already had brushes, but if they didn’t buy them from me would more often than not come back and say it just doesn’t look the same as when I did it.

Everything You Need for Easy Makeup Application

I decided to include everything in one eyeshadow kit: diagram, shadows and brushes to simplify the process and make it easy and fun. The whole eyeshadow application should take a couple minutes, tops! My clients come back and tell me this is the first time they have ever had their makeup done and been able to recreate the look at home. Plus, the kit is great for travel!

Everyone gets tired of fishing each color out of her makeup bag, opening and closing all the lids, and digging out the right brushes. This little book-shaped eyeshadow kit opens up with everything neat and organized. My clients love being able to throw out all their old colors.

The Paint By Numbers Eyeshadow Kit is also truly multi-generational. My best friend who is in her 40s uses it along with her 15 year old daughter and 65 year old mom. And they all have different hair and eye colors! What better way to bond with your daughter or mom than sharing your newest beauty secrets?!

4 Must-Have Natural Exfoliating Scrubs Without Microbeads

natural face and body exfoliating scrubs without microbeads

My skin & body care product obsession started at a young age. By middle school I was doing my own independent reading about – and purchasing of – beauty products. One of the first products I fell in love with was St. Ives Apricot Face Scrub. This product has achieved cult status over the years, and for good reason – it left skin super-soft and glowing. I was thus distraught a few years later when one of the big beauty books said that my scrub with natural exfoliating particles should be shunned, as these irregular shaped bits can cause tiny tears in the skin. YIKES. Never fear, they said – swap in a scrub with manmade perfectly spherical plastic “microbeads”! No more mini-tears; totally skin safe.

This was all years before the green beauty movement took off, so no one really followed this thinking through to the obvious end…where we find ourselves today. These tiny plastic beads, which have become ubiquitous in thousands of products ranging from body scrubs to toothpaste, do not dissolve and therefore pose a major threat to the environment.

In fact, a recent study reported that more than 8 trillion microbeads enter the country’s aquatic habitats daily. These seemingly innocuous microbeads have contributed to an increase in microplastic polluting the planet’s oceans and lakes, and pose a threat to aquatic life. These little plastic perpetrators have since been banned by public policy. However, if your favorite exfoliators contain these microbeads, you might be reeling over the ramifications on your skin.

What To Use Now? What Works?

I’m proud to say that here at Travel Beauty, we’ve only carried scrubs with natural exfoliating particles. By virtue of them populating our virtual shelves, you know they get our stamp of approval as an all-around excellent and effective product. So if you’re on the search for a plastics-free scrub, look no further. Here is our list of the best of the best.

For Face

Lavido Gentle Exfoliator Peeling Cream: This exfoliator/mask is suitable for even the most sensitive skin. It contains Oyster Shell Powder and Pomegranate Peel Grains to provide a subtle scrubbing action, sloughing away dead cells and buildup. Scrub-a-dub for 20 seconds then leave on skin for another minute et viola! Glowing skin is yours.

For Body

Yu-Be Foaming Skin Polish: I find myself writing about and recommending this face & body scrub often. Here’s why: At $18 (for an almost 7 oz) tube, it’s one of the best bargains in beauty. Because it contains fine grains of Rice Bran and Bamboo as well as gentle cleansing (no sulfates!) agents, this polish not only effectively exfoliates, but also works into a luxurious foam as you scrub, so no additional cleaning step is needed. Skin is left totally clean and ready to soak up your skin care products like a sponge. It also has Ginger Root, Ginseng Green Tea, Geranium Oil and Camphor – all benefit skin in different ways and give this polish it’s refreshing and invigorating scent.

Mio Skincare’s Double Buff Dual Action Enzyme Exfoliator: you can easily buff away dull, lackluster skin with Mio’s Double Buff. This non-abrasive scrub is dedicated to revealing brighter, smoother, more even toned skin. In place of harmful buffing fragments, this omega-rich exfoliator utilizes perfectly spherical particles of pumice, lava and bamboo to gently but effectively slough away dead skin cells. Extract of Fig and organic Shea Butter hydrate and moisturize while organic Sweet Almond Oil soothes sensitive skin. The results? Smooth and supple looking skin with renewed clarity and radiance. Not only helping skin to look smoother and more even, its formula is packed with essential nutrients which work to maintain elasticity so skin looks and feels younger, firmer and extra dewy. Use on dry body, pre-shower. Like all Mio Skincare products, Double Buff is free from parabens, petrolatum, synthetic fragrance and colorants, xenoestrogens, PEGs, glycols and phthalates.

Juara Invigorating Coffee Scrub: A much stronger choice of body scrub than the two mentioned above. This invigorating body treatment is made with Indonesian Sumatran Coffee Beans, finely crushed walnut shells and gentle, sulfate-free cleansing agents. This scrub will *wake you up* as it stimulates circulation, exfoliates, cleanses and helps to firm, tone and brighten skin. Coffee has been clinically proven to provide powerful antioxidant and tightening benefits for skin – hence the proliferation of coffee scrubs. Juara’s scrub was one of the first and is still the best in my book. This unique scrub also features Vitamin E-rich Rice Bran Oil, which provides additional hydration and helps maintain skin’s elasticity, leaving skin supple, soft and smooth. Many people have cured their pesky keratosis pilaris with it. A true therapeutic body ritual in a jar.

By: Claire McCormack, Twitter & Instagram

Organic Skin Care Powerhouse From The Sea of Galilee: Lavido

lavido ido magal

From our first visit to Lavido’s breathtaking organic farm located in the heart of the Galilee, we knew this product line was something very special. Lavido products combine the energy and vitality of the best organic, raw, plant-based ingredients with the invigorating benefits of volcanic thermal springs and purified waters from the Sea of Galilee. And, in a short time, Lavido has developed a loyal U.S. based following.

Though the entire Lavido line is stellar, we wanted to highlight some of the unique, must-have products we especially love from this line.

A Serious Anti-aging Moisturizer

One of the active ingredients in the Age Away Hydrating Cream is organic, cold-pressed evening primrose oil, which gives the cream its yellow hue…not to mention many skin-saving benefits! Evening primrose oil contains a natural antioxidant that helps reduce wrinkles and fine lines. Thanks to another ingredient, attar of rose, it smells wonderful, too. This stuff works miracles: You can feel it hydrating and plumping up your skin almost instantly, yet it has a surprisingly light feeling on the skin.

Master Anti-aging Face Oils

The Replenishing Facial Serum is not really a serum, but a luxurious oil blend, including organic pomegranate seed oil, distilled lemon myrtle oil and cold pressed mandarin oil. The oil extracted from the fruits’ seeds contain high concentrations of fatty acids that prevent premature aging and appearance of wrinkles. It also has healing properties that even out skin tone and texture and boost skin’s natural luster and vitality. A little of this serum goes a long way; two drops is really all you need. Replenishing Facial Serum is ideal for dry and/or mature skin, and is fabulous for use as a night treatment, especially as the weather gets colder.

Anti-aging Eye Cream

Hyaluronic Acid Alert Eye Cream is like bright eyes in a bottle. Formulated with plant-based hyaluronic acid, cold-pressed avocado oil, organic pomegranate seed oil and citrus extracts, it absorbs right into the skin and immediately hydrates, de-puffs and brightens the eye area. It is also clinically proven to significantly improve skin texture, firmness and elasticity.

Lavido Antiaging Facial SkincareLavido Utilizes Plant-based Ingredients

We love Lavido’s unique plant-based formulations. Here are just a few of the ingredients used in Lavido products:

Pumpkin Seed Oil

This cold-pressed oil is steeped in zinc and vitamin E, a super antioxidant, which combine to improve skin tone, rejuvenate the skin, and defy the aging process. This ingredient can be found in Lavido’s Age Away Hydrating Cream.

Rose Hips

Two types of rose hip are used in some of our favorite Lavido products. One is the food-grade extract in Alert Eye Cream, which provides an abundance of vitamin C. The other is infused oil, which is used in the Invigorating Facial Serum to calm, cool and soothe puffy skin.

Organic Bulgarian Lavender

Pure concentrations of lavender oil extract contain disinfecting properties that aid in the healing of scars and dark spots as well as the reduction of redness and irritation. And of course, there’s lavender’s legendary aromatherapeutic benefits. Lavender can be found in many of Lavido’s products including Replenishing and Invigorating Serum, Hydrating Facial Toner, Purifying Face Cleanser, Gentle Exfoliator Peeling Cream and Bulgarian Lavender and Avocado Oil Aromatic Body Lotion.

Carrot Root Extract

A root vegetable with ample benefits for the skin and hair, carrot is rich in beta carotene, vitamins A and C, minerals and antioxidants that combine to cleanse, brighten, and tone the skin, while helping to defy the aging process. Lavido Purifying Face Cleanser and Hydrating Facial Toner both contain Carrot Root Extract.

Creating effective skin care products is no small feat! We love spending time with our brand founders to find out what inspired them to create their amazing products. Want to learn more? We sat down with Lavido Founder, Ido Magal, to discuss the genesis of Lavido.

4 Ways To Enhance Your Beauty Regimen With Minus Ion Care Water

Enhance Your Beauty Regimen With Minus Ion Care Water

When cold, crisp winter weather makes our hair and skin freak out (i.e., break out…dry out…frizz out…), we make sure to stock up on our favorite multitasking product from Japan. No one can sing the praises of Vine Minus Ion Care Water better than Travel Beauty’s hair care expert, Ishi.

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Where do I begin? Vine Care Water is negative ion water that was first developed in Japan for NASA to clean the lenses and mirrors on space bound vehicles and satellites. Bacteria cannot live in a pH 12.5 environment, so it was made as a germ-killing cleanser. Negative ion water is 170 times more absorbent than water, so on its own it provides moisture. Used in conjunction with hair and skin care products, negative ion water works as a driver – so it boosts the effectiveness of products used subsequently.

Negative Ion Water Benefits for Hair Care

The negative charge of the water is attracted to – and bonds to – hair.  It helps strengthen fine hair, making it feel thicker. It boosts the strength of conditioners, treatments and styling aids to amplify the benefits of these products. It can also be mixed with your shampoo or conditioner at a rate of 10%, or can be sprayed onto hair, roots to ends, before leave-in conditioners or styling aids are applied. This is a fabulous tool for thick, curly hair as well; read more here about how to use it.

Vine Care Water Minus IonNegative Ion Water Benefits for Skin Care

Care Water works well as a moisturizing skin toner or clarifier (most products that clarify tend to dry the skin). Many of my clients have had success clearing up some forms of acne with Care Water as well. Layered with other products, it boosts the benefits of those products. Here’s an easy experiment to give you an idea of what Care Water does:

  • Put a few drops of oil into water. You will see it separates.
  • Then spray the oil and water with Care Water.
  • You will see it actually reduces the size of the oil drops so that the water and oil mix together.
  • This is the same way Care Water breaks up and clears away oils on the skin.

Negative Ion Water Benefits for Scrapes & Cuts

Sprayed on scrapes or cuts, Care Water cleans the wounds (by killing bacteria) and moisturizes, therefore promoting healing. It’s currently being used in research at burn hospitals in Japan with very positive results.

Negative Ion Water Benefits for Teeth

Care Water also works for brushing your teeth – both cleansing and whitening. Read all about our smile-cleaning secrets here. Don’t swallow it, though! It is not for internal use. The pH is too extreme for that. Care Water is the ideal multi-tasking travel companion. You can find this cure-all wonder water in travel size here at Travel Beauty.

4 Pro Tips For Healthy Holiday Hair

4 pro tips for great holiday heair

Though the holiday season is a wonderful time of year packed with parties, gatherings and festivities, all the celebrating can take a toll on us and our hair. All the blow drying, curling, hot ironing, teasing, pinning, spraying, and combing puts hair through the ringer. So as you spread the love around this season, show a little to your tresses, as well, with a little extra attention.

All the heat and handling your hair is experiencing, in addition to the natural dryness that accompanies winter – drier, crisper air outdoors and heated air indoors – calls for adding more moisture and protection to your hair care routine. We see the need readily on our cracked hands and fingernail cuticles, and as a result may apply hand cream several times a day. Hair strands also have a cuticle, and a similar need for extra hydration during stressful times. Here are a few tips for keeping your hair healthy and shiny from party to party.

Shampoo and condition…

with high quality moisturizing products and resist the urge to over-cleanse. Try to shampoo no more than twice a week, and focus your shampooing on the scalp not the ends. Use your conditioner as a cleanser for the ends, especially with long hair, leave the conditioner on longer than you normally do (again, mainly on the ends), and rinse thoroughly. Caretrico’s Moist Sleek Shampoo and Treatment are rich in emollients and nutrients for your locks.

Here’s an extra pro-tip:

Negative-ion water, such as Vine Care Water, is more absorbent than regular water due to its negative charge, which boosts the effectiveness of conditioners and treatments when they’re used together by helping the treatments penetrate deeper. This wonder water also tames frizz and has a volumizing effect on fine hair. For best results, spray Care Water on damp hair prior to applying leave in-conditioners or styling products.

Use a leave-in conditioner

This time of year is when you should be regularly using a leave-in conditioner. Use after washing when hair is still wet and apply thoroughly to midshafts and ends. Caretrico’s After Treatment Enrich Milk will wrap your locks in a soothing cream and put moisture back where you need it.

Moisturize and polish

Whatever tool or process you’re using to style your hair, be sure to apply a moisturizing styling product for protection, such as Arimino Aqua Moisture, a silicone-based hydration and polishing coating. Aqua Moisture is also great as a finishing touch to smooth flyaways and tame frizz.

You want to look your best for every engagement, especially during December. Help your hair look fresh and healthy by giving it extra nourishment during the winter months.

Happy holidays!