28 July, 2011

Beauty Talk + Giveaway

I'm no beauty expert but, I do have a few products that I am absolutely in love with. And since I love when other bloggers post their beauty tips, I thought - why not post mine? Here are a few of my favorites:

(1) Clinique Trio (#2 for Dry/Combination Skin) : This is a set of facial soap, toner and moisturizer. My mom taught me when I was very little that moisturizing your skin is an absolute MUST. I never had a specific brand that I used for my face, until I went for a consultation at a Clinique counter and the old lady berated me for not using a toner. She suggested the Clinique 3 step program and, for the past few months, my skin is literally glowing. Clinique may or may no be the brand for you (but I highly recommend it), but what is important is to have a routine, to use the same products in conjunction.
I always thought toner was for really oily skin, but I learned that toner is important for all skin types because it removes the impurities on the surface of your skin, opens up you pores and then allows for the moisturizer to really penetrate your skin. Otherwise, you're simply slathering moisturizer onto the very top layer of your skin and it isn't really feeding into the pores (aka not doing its job). Also, don't forget to cleanse and moisturize your neck! Along with your hands, it is one of the first places where your skin starts to age.

(2) Essie Deep Conditioning Cuticle Oil: I love, love, love this. The title is self-explanatory, and it really does its job well. I also love the Sally Hanson Salon effects nail polishes, they go on so smoothly and they have a lot of great nude colors which are perfect for hiding nail imperfections between manicures!

(3) Moroccan Oil and Bumble & Bumble Surf Spray: I discovered these two a month ago and I can't imagine how I survived before them! They are perfection in a bottle. I use the Moroccan oil when I want to straighten my hair - it gives it great shine, smoothness and smells divine. The surf spray is amazing. For the past month, my hair routine has been : wash, towel dry, spray surf spray, and go. I have naturally curly hair that gets unruly and frizzy in the summer humidity, and this spray tames it, giving me soft beachy waves that never dissapoint. These two products are both slightly pricey, but they are definitely worth the investment. And if you buy the Surf Spray at Sephora (online or at the store), they give you a coupon for a free blow-dry and style and participating salons.

(4) I stopped by the Benefit counter the other day, hoping to find a good under-eye concealer, was sucked in by their clever packaging and then convinced when I saw that they really worked! These cosmetics are pricey (I'm used to buying drugstore brands), but I found a few products that I'll definitely splurge on.

Brows-A-Go-Go kit. This kit comes with tweezers,an eye liner, brow shadow and gel, an application brush, a brow highlighter and brightening cream. I always thought that only old Russian ladies {I'm Russian, so I can stereotype! :oP } filled in their brows (or those too eager with the tweezers), but after the woman at the counter filled in mine, I was hooked! I don't do it everyday, but every once in a while I apply a little bit of the brow powder and gel to hold it in place, and the result are more even, slightly thicker looking brows. The highlighting powder goes on so smoothly under the brow, and I also dab a little in the inner corner of me eyes to brighten and make me look more awake.

Finding Mr. Bright: This kit contains Erase Paste (a concealer), High Beam and Pearl ( highlighters) and Posie Tint (a berry colored tint that can be used on face or cheeks). The Erase Paste works wonders but, it is slightly too thick to use everyday in the summer (at least for my skin). I use it for evenings out when I know the sun won't melt away my makeup. It covers really well, and doesn't crease. High Beam is my favorite - it is a shimmery highlighting gel that I use on the apples of my cheeks. It stays on all day and gives off a subtle glow....and it photographs really well!

Now that I've shown you some of my favorite products, time for a little Beauty Giveaway! I previously wrote about Birchbox here (the photo above is of the most recent one), and so I've decided to make a Birchbox of my own, filled with samples of my favorite products, including Philosophy, Marc Jacobs perfume, L'occitane and Fresh, among many others. I'll also include four vignette notecards and a small Italian notebook, perfect for notes-on-the-go.

One lucky reader (domestic or international!) will win this goody-filled "birchbox"!

To enter (1) please leave a comment below (I'd love to hear your beauty favorites!) with your e-mail address and (2) please be a follower of Cap Ou Pas Cap.

I will choose a winner next Monday, August 8.
Bonne chance and Happy Weekend!


Alissa said...

Woohoo, give-away!

I have wavy hair and agree that pricy hair products are usually worth it. Can't wait to try the Surf Spray! I'm also interested in the cuticle oil--not sure I've heard about that before but very smart.


Allison said...

Love this post! It's always good to see what products other bloggers recommend - and I totally feel you on the necessity of a good toner. I recently switched over to The Body Shop and their line of organic moisturizers/toners/etc - all the talk about the damages of free radicals on my skin have terrified me!
I'm also such a hoe for this amazing Stila smoky eye kit that I recently bought! So good.
Obviously I'm a follower of your lovely blog, my dear friend! xox

Sienna said...

does clinique help with break outs? i have never had bad zits and now i'm getting these like random break outs (wtf. at 22 years of age.) and i dont know what to use!!! argh!

Meghan said...

Oh, I love Clinique too! Their moisturizing gel is the best! About 3 months ago, I bought a Clarisonic Mia - and I LOVE it! Helps keep my skin super clean! Another product I really like is Philosophy's Vitamin C powder. I just add it to my moisturizer or serum and it makes my skin very happy :)

Hope you are having a great weekend!!

Anonymous said...

this was fun!

Sounds like an interesting giveaway, I'm definitely in! I think it's an established fact that I'm a follower ;-)

Currently I'm giving the Dermalogica products a try. In the past I've mainly used Clinique, Lancome, Shiseido and Chanel creams on my face. Last spring I decided to go back to Clarins for cleansing milk, toning lotion (and cleansing foam to use in the shower). These Clarins products were the first I bought as a teenager.

jillian m. said...

I really love the Kat Von D tattoo concealer! It works wonders for under-eye circles ad blemishes. A little of it goes a very long way. Best one I've tried yet!

Oh and I heart Benefit products so much. Their packaging is the cutest ever. It can be a bit pricey, but the quality is worth it.

amy b.s. said...

what a great giveaway! i am totally a clinique user too. and a follower now as well!

Miyan said...

this was a fun post! you use some great product, girl!

would love a chance to win. and of course, im following :)



Miyan said...

oh! and my email is miyan0928@gmail.com

Miyan said...

oh! and my email is miyan0928@gmail.com

Elizabeth .: Have Your Cake Blog said...

How fun! I'm so glad I stopped by! I'm a new follower & I'd love to be entered.

I also love B&B Surf Spray. I used Moroccan Oil for a while but felt it weighed my hair down a little too much and competed with some of my perfumes. Have you tried Pequoi Oil or Argan Oil? The Pequoi smells like peppermint and the Argan is my favorite for use on my ends, it's so nourishing!

devorelebeaumonstre. said...

love the b&b surf spray. xo


Mirjam K├Ânig said...

I have really pale skin and I have to take care on it under the sun. When I was in Sweden I saw Hawaiian Tropic Lipglosses and they tasted so good and when I was back in Germany I also bought the sunlotion and was fascinated! :) It's perfect for my skin! :D

e-Mail: adelightfuldream@web.de
Blog: adelightfuldream.blogspot.com

Lindsay K said...

Lovely blog. I finally tried the Moroccan Oil and it's wonderful. My hair has been growning at record rates since I tried it and looks so shiny. I love the scent too.

Jenni Austria Germany said...

this is an amazing giveaway!! my email is jlaw1407 at hotmail dot com

my beauty favs... NARS and MAC forever.

Anonymous said...

Hello! I'm a new follower. I found you through Meg Fee's blog. Nice to meet you :)

I also love Clinique toner. This looks like an awesome giveaway.

Helen said...

Aw, I love this giveaway idea! Birchbox is so genius, don't you think? I am of course a follower and my email is helenofzuo@gmail.com