Friday Finds: Our Top Beauty Picks

This week we are kicking off a new weekly dialogue and we're calling it "Friday Finds". It's a collaborative effort of our amazing lady staff highlighting our collective opinions and picks on any given number of topics- fashion, beauty, travel, you name it! This week we bring you Our Top Beauty Picks along with why we love 'em and links to shop them for yourself. We hope you'll follow along and can we get 2 hoorays for Friday?

| Click product names in the post below for direct shopping links |

BeautyPicksMainKRISTEN'S PICKS:

1. Cover Girl Outlast Lipstick I love this lipstick because it literally stays on for over 10 hours without me having to reapply. For me, that is huge, because I don't have the time in the day to have to keep checking my lipstick! Plus, it can be found at any grocery or pharmacy for $5.99!

2. Aveda Blue Oil I keep this product in my purse for emergency pick-me-ups. It is a blend of peppermint and camomile oil and is great for headaches, plummeting energy levels, tension, sinus issues and even nausea. The little roller ball at the end is perfect for applying to your temples and it is super small and fits right in your purse!

3. Tunisian Jasmine Fragrance Oil So I obviously have an obsession with oils and roller balls. I like them because you can apply it to yourself without accidentally spraying someone in the face. This jasmine fragrance oil is on point and so lovely. It is sweet, feminine and calming. I keep it in my purse for a quick boost of fragrance if I am going somewhere. I just roll in on my wrist. The scent is very concentrated so a little bit goes a long way.

4. Apothecary Florascent Headache Master Aroma Spray I picked up this little bottle of aroma spray at ABC Carpet + Home while in New York City for NY NOW market this past January. I picked up a few other scents for everyone that works here too! I love little bottles of "potions" as I call them, obviously, so this fit right into my growing family of oils and sprays. This peppermint spray is great for boosting energy levels in a room. Sometimes I just spritz it in my face if I have a headache or am feeling blah.

5. OZ Naturals Plant Stem Cells Eye Gel I LOVE this product. Can I tell you it worked in one night, because it did! I don't get a ton of sleep. I work a lot and get terrible under eye bags. I also have oily lids on my eyes, so wearing a heavy cream or lotion on my eyes never did me any favors and I ended up breaking out around my eyes. I found this and since it is a gel, it does not leave my skin feeling oily. No parabens, sulfates or alcohol. If you love it so much, you can also use it all over your face!

6. LIMECRIME Unicorn Lipstick First off, visit their website and you will then know what initially attracted me to this company. So great, but not only that, they offer awesome products. This lipstick comes in lots of crazy shades from Babette Light pink to Styletto black. It is a super bold and opaque lipstick that lasts for hours! I LOVE it along with all their other products!

7. Intelligent Nutrients Destress Express Pure Essence Elixir Okay, this stuff is a little pricier, but it is amazing! Again, another roller ball essential oil thing, but the blend of oils smells amazing and for some reason the blend of oils is so calming. It contains peppermint, spearmint, ravintsara, cardamom, cinnamon, chamomile, lime and vanilla and red raspberry flavors. This company was founded by the person who started Aveda. He sold Aveda and then started Intelligent Nutrients. After Horst, the founder, sold Aveda to Estee Lauder he shifted his focus to Intelligent Nutrients, a health and beauty company that lives to the highest standards of 100% food-based, safe, non-toxic and organic ingredients. They believe in making pure organic products, head to toe.

8. Vitamin C Serum with Retinol, Salicylic Acid, B3 and Tea Tree Oil I just turned 30 this year. I have wrinkles, but I also still break out like I am 20 years old. Hormones, what can I say?! Anyways, for a while I have tried to find an anti-aging nightly skin treatment that did not break me out. I recently discovered this and I love it. Not only does it help with the aging process, BUT it also keeps me from breaking out! I am obsessed with it!

9. MIST Self tanner and Bronzer for the Face I am not a naturally tan woman. I wish I was, but I'm not, and the older I get the less and less I like to be in the direct sun as skin cancer runs in my family. I am all about the SPF, but it definitely doesn't leave me all nice and bronzed. I love this little bottle of self tanner for my face. I can spritz my face in the morning for an instant bronze that will last me a few days. I do recommend using a towel when rubbing it on your face so your hands don't turn tan. Another great thing about this is that is not an orange tan, it looks natural, and it is not super dark. The more you apply, the tanner you get, but if you only spritz your face a little bit, it will give you a nice subtle glow that will last a few days! It is also a perfect travel size for your luggage or purse!

10. Model In A Bottle Original Makeup Setting Spray Okay, I love this! I hate reapplying my makeup. When I am at trade shows from 8 am until 6 pm, you don't have time to reapply your makeup. I recently found this before I went to NY Now in January of this year and it was THE BOMB!!! I could put my makeup on in the wee hours of the morning, spritz this on my face after, and by 6 pm, my makeup was still on my face and I didn't look like the non makeup wearing, tired gal I normally do at the end of a show day. I was still tired, but at least my face did not show it.

11. Intelligent Nutrients Body and Hair Elixir Again, back to Intelligent Nutrients. I love this company and this spray. I use it every morning as my perfume for the day. It is food grade and organic, and great for your body and hair. It helps make skin and hair smooth, but you also smell good doing it! It is a little pricier, but if you want to treat yourself… I recommend this stuff. So good! I love spraying it in my hair after I blow-dry it!

NaturalOilsNatural Oils:

I could go on and on about essential oils and show you my huge shelf of them, but I won't today. I will tell you that I own three diffusers. We keep one down in the office, meeting area upstairs and my room. I love diffusing oil! I know, I know, some of you may think I am nuts, but whatever… we all have our things.

1. Coconut Oil I love coconut oil and all of its health benefits. It is not only great to cook with and can help lower blood sugar, but it is fabulous on my hair. HERE is an article on just a few beauty uses of coconut oil. I am just going to talk about the hair issue. I have naturally oily hair, but before I recently dyed my hair brown, I was processing it blonde every 5-6 weeks. Highlighting my hair, being as cute as it was, and blow-drying it all the time left my ends super dry and my roots all oily by the end of a day. Can you picture it? Kind of a mullet-frizz situation ;). Anyways, I started putting it on the ends of my hair right after the shower, and I can tell a major difference. It helps prevent the ends from splitting and nourishes them. I do recommend the all natural, extra virgin coconut oil and not a hair product marked coconut oil. The pure coconut oil has no additives.

2. Tea Tree Oil I could go on and on about Tea Tree Oil. I have been using it for over 15 years now. My dad used it a lot when I was a kit and would mix it into aloe + alpha hydroxy lotion and make his own moisturizer. I have used it to clean cuts, heal abrasions, breakouts on my face, massaged into my scalp. The uses are endless and it smells amazing.

3. Smith's Rosebud Salve I have been using this stuff for years. It is in a great little container and really heals dry lips. I sometimes put it on dry patches of skin and sometimes my hands! It is a multi-use product, which are my favorite kinds of products.

4. Dr. Bronner's Magic Soaps I have been using these soaps since around 2007. I keep a bottle of the lavender one in my shower at home, and when I travel I take a little bar of soap like the one pictured. The greatest thing about this soap is that it, like most of the products I use, are multi-purpopse. The soaps are pure-castile and can be used for just about any cleaning task from bathing, dishwashing, mopping, laundry and even pest control. All soaps are also certified Fair Trade. Packaged in 100% post-consumer recycled (PCR) plastic bottles.

5. Lush Shine So Bright Split End Treatment Ok, I could go on and on about this product, but I won't. I tell everyone about it. Seriously. It comes in a small tin container, perfect for my purse makeup bag. I keep one at home and one in my purse. Being in the south, we know how humidity takes control of our hair; It's like a scary movie sometimes. I take this tin, open it up, rub some on my hands and then smooth it over my frizz. It INSTANTLY combats the frizz and smooths my hair. Plus, it won't melt in your purse on a hot summer day. It contains coconut, olive oil, shea butter and fresh free range eggs. It also smells AMAZING!!!!

Natural Deoderant:

NaturalDeodorant1. Aloe and Almonds All Natural Roll On Deodorant I really like this natural deodorant. I keep one in my purse as the bottle is not that large. I also have a large purse though.. so I have an assortment of things in there! This deodorant contains no animal ingredients, no alcohol, no dyes, no artificial preservatives or bactericides. I like the way it works, and it does work. Good natural deodorant option!

2. Vitae 100% Confident Deodorant Spray With natural deodorants I have to switch every few days so my body doesn't get used to it. I switched to natural deodorants a few months ago and will never go back to the aluminum filled junk. I live in the south, I know, but it was just a decision I wanted to make personally. This deodorant is amazing and super refreshing. It is hypoallergenic, NO harmful aluminum chlorohydrate/zirconium. It has natural, organic ingredients like seaweed extracts & essential oils to eliminate odor & kill bacteria.

TOP PICKS FROM THE TEAM:

Celine:

Favorite beauty product/tip I recommend to friends is Benefit’s They’re Real! Mascara, then run a coat of Anastasia’s Lash Genius Waterproof Topcoat over! Seriously best ever! The mascara on it’s own is amazing, doesn’t clump, makes your lashes super long and is washed off easy with a cleanser. To apply I start at the base of the lashes and wiggle the wand up, doing this coats every strand but it also looks like I have the shakes or something when I’m putting mascara on, haha. The tip of the mascara wand has a little ball with spikes on it (sounds weird, I know) and is good for extending the corner lashes out. After I put on 2 coats I let it dry then do 1 coat of Anastasia’s Lash Genius Waterproof Topcoat. Just one coat makes it totally waterproof and not clumpy, I’ve swam in pools, oceans and even showered and it wouldn’t budge. However, it comes off easily with make-up remover or a cleanser and it's pretty gentle on your lashes unlike other waterproof mascaras.

Second beauty secret: Clarisonic!! It’s like giving yourself a gentle microdermabrasion treatment every time you use it. Best exfoliator ever and gets rid of any trace of makeup on your skin! My mom’s an esthetician and recommends it to everyone. If I don’t use it for a few weeks my skin isn’t as bright and feels really dry. Really great investment for your skin long term.

Liz:

A friend recently gave me a recipe for a homemade face wash that's natural and supposed to help both dry and oily skin and it's so easy to make. Mix 3 parts good quality (I try to find organic) olive oil with one part castor oil. Agitate it and apply it to your face with a hot wash rag in the shower. I use it before I wash my hair to keep the hairline from getting oily. The castor oil cleanses and the olive oil makes your skin look dewy.

f-792850583993Kate:

Over the past year I have transitioned from using lotions to only oils and it's been SO amazing. There are so many additives in lotions these days that 100% pure organic oils is the way to go!! I'm a huge fan of natural beauty products. So I use a lot of different oils! I love that for makeup remover, I use Jojoba Oil. It feels amazing! Once I do that, I put Burt's Bees Intense Hydration cream on my face-- It's amazing and feels so great AND smells perfect! It also has Clary Sage in it which is great as a natural antidepressant, antibacterial, astringent and sedative (calming effect)!Also, I try to take a bath every other night. Just for a sense of calming/ to get away from reality. I put these Burt's Bee's Crystal Compound bath salts in my bath, which smell amazing and have Ecalyptus Oil (which emits an essence of cleanliness). I also add in Lavender Essential oil (calming) + Rosemary Essential oil (treats anxiety). Lastly, burning insence is a great addition to a great calming bath, this is my favorite scent: Nag Champa

Natalie:

Growing up, I hated my curly hair. Many of my close friends had pin-straight hair, and some of them flat-ironed their straight locks to make them even flatter. I tried to fight my rebellious locks, but no matter what I tried, my hair was always poofier than theirs. One day I gave up and just decided to accept the hair I was born with. I came across this book "Curly Girl: The Handbook" and used their tips to meet my own needs. These days, my strategy for maintaining my hair these days boils down to my "less is more" philosophy especially when it comes to washing, products and heat.

devacurl_3_step1. Hair washing: While it seems counterintuitive at first, dirty hair is usually healthy hair. The oils produced by your scalp are GREAT for your hair. I try to wash my hair no more than twice a week, and only use shampoo 2-3 times per month.

2. Products: Lately I've been using L'Oreal's Sulfate Free line of shampoo and conditioners. I also am a big fan of John Frieda Frizz-Ease products (I use the mousse daily and their Secret Weapon cream between shampoos). However, I've been wanting to try the DevaCurl system - all my friends who use it swear by it.

3. Heat (or lack thereof): All my experience has told me that the less heat you use on your curly hair, the better it will look. I can't remember the last time I touched a blowdryer - my hair air dries after every wash.

My other main beauty tip is to drink lots of water. I feel so much better when I'm well-hydrated, and the ladies at Thimblepress know I don't go anywhere without my 32 oz waterbottle. I try to drink at least 64 if not 96 oz of water daily. If I'm tired but know I slept through the night, dehydration is usually the culprit.

MK:

I love Garnier BB cream! It's super smooth feel with sun screen and light tinting. It's not a foundation but gets the job done for a quick and easy routine. Perfect for those, like I, who prefer sleep time to makeup application time! ;) Find it HERE

I need an eyelash curler to complete 'the look'. Laura Mercier has a compact one for about $15 and I take it everywhere. Be sure to curl lashes *before applying mascara!

Lastly, I love the concealer combination pack from Bobbi Brown which has concealer and a powder!

yu-be-moisturizing-skin-cream-original-japanese-formula-2-5-oz-204.gifJoy:

My favorite product is "Yu-Be Moisturizer" - it's a glycderin-based, vitamin-enriched moisturizer, developed in 1957 by a Japanese pharmacist. I use it as my daily facial moisturizer. But it can also be used as overall skin cream (dry hands, cracked heels, etc.). I know, I know - a product that you can use on your face, feet,and everything in between?! I was skeptical at first, but now I can't live without it. Good stuff. Also, it doesn't have any artificial dyes, fragrances, petroleum, etc.

Marielle:

My favorite beauty product is Urban Decay All Nighter Long Lasting Makeup Setting Spray. I love it because it keeps my face looking as fresh as when I applied my makeup no matter what. It lasts through wind, rain, sweat, etc. which is amazing because I never reapply my makeup during the day. It is also a nice light weight spray that doesn’t feel heavy or sticky.

Lucy: fa84353d954f96320cbe0358bcc4aadd

My favorite beauty product is Moroccan Oil Extra Volume Shampoo/Conditioner. I get my hair highlighted regularly and use hot tools on it almost everyday and this keeps my hair shiny and not damaged-plus, it smells great. I like it so much I take it on all my travel and never use any other shampoos. My hair has never been better since I started using these products.

My best beauty tip would be to be active one a day! I thkin this is the best think for you physically and mentally!

Hope you all enjoyed our very first Friday Finds and swing by next week for another dose! Cheers to the weekend for now, friends!



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