InTruBeauty: July 2012



                                                                                                               

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

$200 Christmas Challenge Update

I recently posted about doing a $200 Christmas Challenge and wanted to update you all on how that was going.  I've linked it above if you want to read the original post!

This may sound like an impossible challenge.  It's not going to be easy, but it IS feasible.  You should know that I am NOT going to do the following:
-Give people products I've received for free.
-Give people things I already own.
-Give people items from garage sales, Goodwill, or Salvation Army
-Give everyone beauty products, because not everybody is into that!

A few things I AM planning on doing:
-Giving people things that I got using coupons.
-Give people products from Birchbox (as long as they tie in with the rest of the gift).
-Give people gifts worth the same amount I usually spend on them or more.
-Give people the best gifts possible that I know they will love, that my very small budget can afford.
-Think of things to give that have been on previous Christmas wish lists, or things that people have mentioned wanting recently, and as the time gets closer to Christmas, follow their list as closely as possible.

Ok, that being said, I have already picked out a few gifts.  And since I know a few family members and many friends follow our blog, I won't tell you who it's meant for.

Gifts so far purchased:
1.  2 Zoya Pinterest Trios @$6.95 each
This was a trio of 3 nail polishes that were on special for $6.95 including shipping about a month or two ago.  We advertised it on our facebook page.  This will not be the completed gift for the two ladies who will be recipients- I will add more to it as time goes on!

2.  Macy's Charter Club earrings @$1.50 marked down from $16
I love to shop during the Macy's 75% off sale and sometimes you can get an even bigger deal.  I won't lie, I've already misplaced where I put these after their purchase, so I couldn't take a picture.  The ones below are kind of similar to the ones I purchased.  The person I bought these for will be getting these for 1/2 of their gift.  


So where does this put me?  I am down to $184.60 left in my Christmas fund for the year.  Guys are always harder for me to shop for, so I'm going to focus on manly items that go on sale.  I want to share with you something I goofed on last year, and something I struck gold with last year relating to man presents.

Woops!  My husband wanted a video camera last year, so while I was in line at Kohl's last Black Friday, I spotted one that was $150 marked down to $40.  I totally scooped it up because if it was $150 originally it's gotta be good.  Right?  Wrong!  It was the biggest piece of junk ever and I got the eye roll for not looking up reviews.  So word to the wise- DO NOT buy something electronic without reading reviews.  

Score!  My dad's big on the outdoors and camping.  If he had to move out of his house tomorrow and 
was given a shack in the woods free of charge with an outdoor toilet, and a bow and arrow to kill his own game, he'd probably feel like he won the lottery.  I don't get it, but anyways, he is pretty easy to shop for if you buy fishing tackle, or anything hunting related.  Last year, I went out on a limb and bought him an LED lantern from Macy's that was on clearance for $10.  Not really my first place I would have thought to buy outdoors stuff but it was a total hit.  He uses it constantly, and loves it.  He was shocked I bought it at Macy's.  

P.S. Another thing I am looking into for help with Christmas buys is Little Black Bag.  Jessica's a member, and she gets some outstanding deals.  It's $50 and that's 1/4 of my alloted money, so it'll be a big decision.  You can sign up for Little Black Bag here. Search "little black bag" in the search bar to see all the goodies she has gotten for this low price! (Around $9 to $10 per item at the end).

Am I the only person shopping for Christmas already?  Tell me where I can find all the good deals!

Yours in Beauty and Savings,
Justina

Monday, July 30, 2012

Dr. Brandt Pore Products Test

On a particularly troublesome area of my chin, I decided to test out what some Dr. Brandt products could do for me. I don't know what it is lately, but my skin has been unusually oily and breaking out. These were all applied in the span of 15 minutes after one application of each product. 

Products Used:
1. Pores no more vacuum cleaner blackhead extractor
this product is soothing and has a slight tingle to it. You leave this on for 5 to 10 minutes then rinse off. 

2. Blemishes no more intensolution for blemish prone skin
this had a very strong scent to it, but really really visibly cleaned out dirt  from my pores and removed oil

3. Pores no more pore refiner
this has a slight colored foundation type tint to it. It is similar to a clinique product I have used. This melts into the skin quickly and smooths out the area so the appearance of the pores are not as visible. 

Quite the results for one application and one use of these product. 

BEFORE
extreme HD close up. Ick.
AFTER

I used a sample of this product one time after with continued great results. This may be one I will have to look into the full size of! What do you think? Have you tried this product?

*We received sample sized packets for this review from the company or its PR agency for review. These opinions and pictures are honest and they are our own. This post is the property of TruBeautyGems and may not be used without express permission**

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Lipstick Storage

Today, I bring you a project I worked on last week- organizing my insane lipstick collection!  I seriously have way too much lipstick, lip balm, lipgloss, lip stain, (you get the picture).  I have an entire drawer in my bathroom designated for my eyeshadows, liners, and mascaras, but don't have the space to designate another drawer for my lipsticks.  For shame!



In this pic above you can kind of see what I've done.  I got 3 plastic bins with the handled lids at Target, each for $2.50.  I categorized each bin by shade and put my lip glosses that are not pigmented enough to belong in a shade group in those little buckets you see.  The buckets were $1 at Target.


I taped little color coded notes on the insides of each tier.  Each tier comes off separately with latches on the sides.  I have 3 of these boxes, and each box has 3 sections, for a total of 9.  Here are my 9 colors I have separated my lip products by:
1.  Nudes
2.  More nudes
3.  Bronze/brown
4.  Orange/Coral
5.  Bright Pinks
6.  Chocolately Pinks
7.  Red
8.  Purples
9.  Lip Balms  


Here's what each tier looks like on the inside.  Each tier is about 2.5 inches deep and has 2 sections.  You could separate by doing one side of lip gloss, and the other side lip stick.  I just crammed it in however it fit, as long as it was in the correct color family.

I'm really digging my new organization technique!  It helps me be able to locate exactly what I'm looking for each time I want to wear lipstick.  How do you organize your lipstick?

Yours in Beauty,
Justina

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Star Studded Fashion

This is a look I've seen on and off in the last few years but just recently spotted again in Lucky Magazine last month- a star head piece!  So beautiful.  Here are some of my favorite picks- which is your favorite?  Would you wear this trend?
Buy here for $25

Buy here for $10

Buy here for $244 

Buy here for $45

Buy here for $50

I love this trend!  

Yours in Beauty,
Justina


LightStim Announcement!

We are so happy to announce that we have been chosen for a review and giveaway program presented by LightStim for Wrinkles. 
 
What is LightStim?
LightStim is proud to be the category leader in LED light therapy and is one of the most experienced distributors of LED light to the medical and spa industry. To meet the needs of a growing consumer base, LightStim introduced their LightStim for Wrinkles (valued at $249) at-home handheld device, a USA manufactured LED light with over-the-counter FDA clearance for periorbital wrinkles. Sold at Macy's, lightstim.com, and in the past on QVC.
Justina and I both received a LightStim to test out and we will be updating you in 4 weeks of our progress. I will be testing the product first as Justina is expecting a baby girl in less than 10 weeks and the product has not been tested for use on pregnant women. You can expect my first post with before and after results in 4 weeks and then 4 weeks from that post.
The device is designed to show noticeable results in 8 weeks. I just turned 30 so I am really excited to see how this product works on my fine wrinkles, pore size and uneven skintone. Justina is 4 years younger than I am (lucky girl), so you will get to see how this product works on two different ages and skin types. Maybe after that baby screaming all night she will develop some wrinkles and need this more than I do. :)
Click to enlarge photos
My thoughts so far:
  • I have completed 4 days
  • I have been using this daily for 20 minutes, 3 minutes at a time per area after applying the serum that was provided.
  • The warmth is soothing and calming and great to do while relaxing or before bed
    • It does not get too hot
  • I have noticed a little bit of breakouts on my face. By that I mean a few pimples. Other than the light and serum, my skincare routine has remained the same. I'm not sure if the LSD light/production of collagen or the serum is to blame.
And the best news for you is that we will have one of these to giveaway to a lucky facebook fan! Be sure to "like" our facebook page to be kept up to date on the details!

Yours in Beauty, 

Jessica

Friday, July 27, 2012

Scalisi Anti-Aging Moisturizer SPF 30

We recently tried a product by Scalisi , their Anti-Aging Moisturizer.  We got a purse size of this product along with a cute little stretchy headband that I've been using to keep my hair out of my face while I'm washing it.  It's like getting a spa treatment in the privacy of my own dirty little bathroom!  Ha!

Here's what the product looks like.  It's a purse sized little gem in a blue pump bottle.  It has SPF 30 (win!) and you get .2 oz in this travel size for $20.  Their website advertises that it's small enough for your purse, but large enough to last a week or two.

A week or two of skin care- and just day cream at that- comes at a high price with Scalisi- does it measure up to the price tag?  I'm not sure.  It's impossible to determine whether a skincare product is for you, or if it will break you out, simply in a week's use.  The full size is $110 for 1.7 oz. When we tried it, we noticed with one or two pumps we got enough for our whole face.  It was white (probably from the SPF) and took a little while to rub in.  We were outside in the hot sun, and didn't burn on our faces, so that's a good indication that it was working. It definitely felt good while being applied and was enough to sufficiently moisturize our skin.

If you are already a fan of Scalisi, it's good to know they have a purse size of their products, but you will have to be the judge whether it's good enough to warrant a $20 purchase for a thimble size of moisturizer.  I recommend contacting the company via their website and asking if they have a smaller size yet for sampling before splurging on the travel size.

Yours in Beauty,
Justina & Jessica

This product was sent to us for review by Scalisi. We were not compensated for this review. All opinions are  honest and they are our own.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Lumene Radiant Touch Foam Cleanser Review

Lumene Radiant Touch Foam Cleanser Review



Company Information: LUMENE Oy is a holistic beauty and well-being company with two brands: Lumene and Cutrin. Lumene focuses on skincare and color cosmetics. Both are developed and manufactured in Finland by a team of experts using state-of-the-art technology.

Product Description: Radiantly refreshed and perfectly clean skin! This light, creamy foam cleanser removes all make-up and impurities as it refreshes with its invigorating scent. Unique arctic cloudberry oil helps to boost your skin's natural radiance. Leaves skin feeling clean, fresh and radiant.

Ideal for normal and combination skin. Product contains over 80% natural ingredients. Paraben-free. 150 ml / 5.1. FL.OZ.


My Review: 
Face wash is kinda my thing. I have WAY too much of it! I have at least 6 different face washes in my shower (and more spread out throughout my bathroom), depending on my mood and the needs of my face. I was given the opportunity to test Lumene and I would say it is the product I have been reaching for most frequently, which says a lot. I use this in conjunction with a St. Ives face scrub on my nose and chin areas.

This comes out in a light yellow cream consistency and has the most heavenly light citrus scent. It is so relaxing! It lathers up into a nice lather and leaves my skin feeling soft and clean. My skin is more on the dry side and I hate getting out of the shower with that panic feeling to find my moisturizer. I still moisturize slightly after using this product, however, there is no mad rush for it! This does not dry out my face which I love. I have had no irritations from this product at all.

Another great thing is the price. It has ingredients in it like Artic Cloudberry and Glycerin that are found in more expensive skincare.


               Age-defying cloudberry seed oil protects and strengthens the skin. Cloudberry is particularly  
               beneficial to health due to its vitamin C content; cloudberries contain twice as much vitamin C as 
               oranges. The detox properties of cloudberry nectar help to make the skin look brighter and more 
               radiant.

Retails: $9.99

Yours in Beauty, 
Jessica

Monday, July 23, 2012

Little Black Bag Unboxing {Pic Heavy)

Invite Link to sign up free: Little Black Bag invite
I'm not going to go into detail about what LBB is since I have done that in prior blog posts. You can simply search for "little black bag" in the search bar to see my prior posts, or click to see some:

Here is my most recent Little Black Bag, containing 5 items, valued around $200. You pick one item to start out with. I picked a color block clutch ($88 value) and then the stylists pick other items for you for a value of around $100. I received a pair of $30 earrings and a $25 iphone case for a total value of $143. Throughout 7 days of trading or swaping with other members, here is what I ended up with. At one point the value of the contents of my bag was over $250 and I had three purses in my "bag". At the end, I always choose to swap for what I want rather than what may be more expensive, so I did quite the trade offer to get this stunner of a bag and I don't regret it one bit! Once you start trading, you will quickly get the hang of it.


Nila Anthony - Woven Tote (Retails $88)
inside of bag!
All the Rage - Beaded Round Earrings (Retails $16) 
 All the Rage - Beaded Statement Necklace (Retail $24)


MMS Design Studio - Printed Straw Clutch (Retails $50) 




Kikkerland - Owl Bath Mat (Retails $17)

My advice: If you want to maximize on trading, don't get attached to the items in your bag. If you get a trade offer that is better, accept it! Don't worry, the item you had will VERY likely come back around! If for some reason, it doesn't come back around, but you have built up the retail value of your bag, you can always make an offer to get that item back later. Trust me, after 7 days of looking at some of these items, its pretty easy to let go!! The first 5 days I devote to increasing the value of the items in my bag and the last 1-2 days I devote to getting what I really want in my bag!! If you want to play it safe, pick one expensive item you know you're hanging onto and then trade for the other smaller items for items that you are happy with. Make lots of trade offers yourself. Everyone has different tastes which is the brilliance of this site. Some items I would rather be hit with a hammer than have laying around my house, but other people love them! So trade, trade, trade! (I would say most of the items in the gallery are very cute, there is little "crap" in my opinion). If there is something you don't like, but a holiday or birthday is coming up, it is the perfect opportunity to gift that item without having to spend much money! 

Sign up for free here: Little Black Bag invite
(you can skip each month and not be charged if you chose)

This is my third bag and I'm not disappointed. Their customer service is excellent if you have any issues with any products. I did return the Nila oversized clutch and turquoise pendant from my last bag and will be given equal value credit for those items. You can see my last bag here.

Come join me in the most addicting and fun new site around. My last two bags, I have gotten items for an average of $9 or $10 per item! What a deal! Where else can you get a designer purse for essentially $10? This is perfect for gifting as well!

Yours in Beauty and Little Black Bags, 

Jessica

Summer Road Trippin' with the Rimmel 10: Challenge 7

This is about the time of year where I am wishing I had a beautiful red convertible to drive with the top down and the music turned up, driving to who knows where, but probably a beach.  The wind is blowing and despite the fact that my hair's pulled back, it keeps flying into my lipgloss.  It's a beautiful sunny day and there's not a cloud in the sky.  I have a full tank of gas, a full bank account, a full set of abs to rock my bikini.... ok I'm dreaming...

In reality, I have a red Ford Focus with a sun roof, a quarter tank of gas, and we won't discuss the current state of my abdominal muscles.  BUT, I'm still ready for a road trip and I have a lot of goodies I want to pack with me:

The bag

My travel companion, Ruckus
Yes, you're seeing this right, that's a life jacket!
My rockin' neon aviators

My summer snack of choice

My summer mani
Hot Cocoa by Rimmel

My summer makeup look


All by Rimmel
Fix & Perfect Primer
Clean Finish Foundation
Natural Bronzer in Sun Dance
Match Perfection Blush in Medium
Glam'Eyes Quad
Waterproof Liner in Purple
ScandalEyes Lycra Flex Mascara
In my bag:

Rimmel Makeup is long lasting, so I won't need many touchups.
But I'm obsessed with my Match Perfection Blush, and we all know lipgloss touchups are a must!
If my eye makeup washes off on the beach, I will use a little blush/highlighter on my lids to perk up!

What's on my Nook:

"White Girl Problems" by Babe Walker.  (If you haven't read it, you must.  It is pee-your-pants-funny and the perfect summer read!)

Everything I need besides my pup will fit in my awesome floral beach bag.  My trick to not needing to pack much?  
Here are my 3 favorite summer beauty tips!

1.  Use multi functional products.  I like to use Match Perfection blush swirled together on my cheeks,  and use the highlighting shade on my cupid's bow, on my brow bone, and anywhere else that needs a little highlighting.

2.  Start with a primer to get your makeup to stick, and you won't need touch ups.  Rimmel Fix & Perfect Primer makes my makeup budge proof.  

3.  Sunglasses are my top summer accessory.  Got messy hair?  Wear them as a headband and your bedhead won't be as evident.  That mascara's not waterproof after all?  Put your shades on and nobody will notice.  OR use your sunglasses as a mirror to fix your eye makeup. 

Where are you headed for your summer road trip?  What would you bring, and tell me your favorite summer beauty tips!

Yours in Beauty,
Justina

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