| Beauty
During fashion week, there are so many mixers, events, parties…it’s easy to get lost in the swag. Some of us still have freebies sitting around from LAST season (eek!), so when approached at a mixer about a new eye cream by the creator herself, we kept one ear on the party and didn’t expect much.

the_ultimate_eyecream.pngLisa Ashley, the creator, approached a group of us and asked for a few minutes to tell us about her Ultimate Eye Cream. She told us briefly about its features and benefits, demonstrated the product for us on our hands, and asked us for business cards before leaving us to enjoy the mixer. Impressed by her soft yet professional pitch, genuine passion for her product, and ok….curiosity about the wild claims (eliminates need for concealer! covers imperfections without color! masks redness and dark circles! smooths wrinkles and fine lines!), the cream stayed fresh in mind all night, and was begging to be tested the very next day.

First, we did some more research. From the site:

After years in the laboratory, combining the most advanced ingredients to create a multi-functioning product that delivers ultimate and immediate results, Lisa Ashley introduces The Ultimate Eyecream. A truly groundbreaking beauty product with some of the most advanced and innovative features in the cosmetics industry.

“Lisa Ashley, The Ultimate Eyecream” uniquely integrates six different benefits into one eyecream:

  1. helps to firm skin, reduces puffiness, and inflammation.
  2. special light diffusing properties gives the illusion of instantly neutralizing dark circles, brightening eye area while leaving a luminous glow.
  3. increases blood circulation and helps to improve lightness of dark circles.
  4. unique blend of ingredients gives the appearance of significantly softening lines.
  5. a natural alternative to silicone, rejuvenates and hydrates skin while also providing strong antioxidant protection.
  6. distinctive steel roller ball application helps soothe and minimizes inflammation.

Tall order, huh?

We weren’t expecting much - generic white packaging, sticker label, “illuminating” roller ball design seen on many a trendy eye product - but let us say: WOW.

The product did exactly as it claimed, and then some- brightened, smoothed, soothed, and we barely had to touch our concealer (For the record, this is after years of piling on heavy duty concealers to mask our hereditary dark circles).

A complete winner in our book. We’d gladly pay double the cost.


This September, celebrated makeup brand Bobbi Brown released its new collection for fall: Black Velvet (cue Allanah Myles’ gritty, throaty rendition of the namesake song replaying in your mind.) 

As per the norm, fall tends to evoke a need for the sultry eye - smokey, smudgy and sexy. Now, we know we mentioned earlier that minimalism is a huge trend in makeup this fall, but like every season, there is a trend for just about everyone. 

The collection consists of metallic, sparkle and matte eye shadows, creamy eyeliners, and bold, powerful lip colors and glosses. 

From the metallic shadows, we tested Black Charcoal, which is an ebony, translucent shadow with a slight, chic glitter. Even more translucent is the sparkle eye shadow (we tried the purple-ish Black Velvet). We think this would be best for topping off your eye, adding a finishing sparkle that catches the light beautifully (note, it’s incredibly light, but can be built upon to create a slightly darker shade.) From the matte shadows, we tried on Black Chocolate, which is silky and pigment rich, so a little goes a very long way (it’s also great wet as an eyeliner.)


From the powerful lip collection, we tested Black Maple - a brownish, plummy hue that is definitely not for the faint of heart. The metallic lip color in Black Garnet and the Black Chocolate gloss would work best for the more conservative lip type. 

Overall, we had a lot of fun smudging and blending and smoking up our eyes. And our favorite part was, because of the translucent characteristics of the shadows, it was our choice how light or how dark we wanted to go. $20 - $24,
Softsoap-Brand-Body-Wash-Black-Orchid.jpgThose of us who dread the early morning shower, especially as the cold creeps in, are always on the lookout for decadent, moisturizing new potions to make the process a bit more enjoyable. Thankfully, Softsoap’s new luxe body washes have us covered.

The new lineup includes:

  • Nutri Serums Mineral Extracts - This luxurious formula is infused with mineral extracts to enhance skin’s radiance, while providing a concentrated dose of nutrients for soft, healthy-looking skin. 
  • Body Butter Mega Moisture Heavenly Vanilla - This thick, rich formula delivers long-lasting moisture with a comforting vanilla scent that leaves you feeling relaxed and ready to conquer your day. Restores moisture to help prevent the appearance of dry skin
  • Black Orchid & Velvet Hibiscus- Enriched with real hibiscus extract, this natural skin conditioner leaves skin silky soft and irresistible to the touch.  

The Nutri Serum is light and has a soothing gel texture, and leaves skin luminous. The Black orchid has an intoxicating, spicy scent that leaves skin feeling…sexy. Perhaps best for the colder months, the rich vanilla Body Butter leaves skin silky and smells exactly as described…heavenly. We couldn’t stop smelling our arm all day.

We’ve been using these three in heavy rotation… it’s impossible to choose just one! 


NYX Jumbo Eye Pencil

Very rarely is there a beauty product that makes us want to jump up and down….well, at least for under $5. NYX’s top-selling (for a reason, mind you) Jumbo Eye Pencil comes in 20 different vibrant, creamy colors for less than a normal combo meal at a fast food joint - $4.19. 

Yes, we said $4.19. The unassuming white pencils have quickly become a phenomenon on and with budget beauty junkies everywhere. 

What we love the most about these fat eye crayons is their versatility. You can use them as an eyeliner and as an eyeshadow. Usually, an eyeshadow can double as an eyeliner, but rarely is it the other way around. 

The creamy, non-creasing consistency blends seamlessly with the warmth of your finger tip to smudge your liner, or create a full eye. Plus, you can buy six different colors for the price of one similar high-end brand pencil.

The only thing NYX’s Jumbo Eye Pencil left us wanting, was to try their lip pencils. $4.19, 
top chignon 2.jpg
There is nothing new and innovative about chignons, but after a long summer of beachy waves, nothing is more refreshing then swept up locks to showcase your gorgeous face. Plus, with higher fall and winter necklines creeping out of our closets, a high, top bun is the perfect hairstyle to keep from looking overdone and busy. 

Perfect for day to night transitions, the office and for fast-approaching holiday parties, look to stars like Sarah Jessica Parker, Kate Bosworth, Minka Kelly and January Jones for chignon inspiration.

Top Chignon 1.jpg
Five steps for a sleek and elegant high-rise chignon:

1. Brush back your hair as high as your crown (ideally, your chignon will land directly opposite of your chin). 

2. Secure your pony loosely with a thing hair tie, and tease the base of the pony tail. 

3. Carefully wrap your hair from the base to the tip in a circular motion, securing with bobby pins. Find bobby pins that are the closest to your hair color for a more seamless look. 

4. You may have loose hairs and ends left over if you have layered hair, sweep them into place and secure with some more bobby pins.

5. Lightly spritz hairspray from your lower hairline at the base of your scalp to your bun, avoiding too much product up front to keep from looking too slicked back. 

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