All Posts By:  beautybanter

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KeSARI Skin Care + GIVEAWAY

By | skin | 38 Comments

I first discovered KeSARI skin care at the Mzia Shiman Spa on 59th Street and 5th Avenue. I was having a facial – one of the best facials of recent years, I might add – and KeSARI products were being used on my skin. I instantly fell in love with India’s best kept beauty secret.

And now I’m not only sharing it with you — I’m going to do a GIVEAWAY!!!

But first, a bit about the line. KeSARI is inspired by India’s natural healing ingredients and ancient traditions.

KeSARI means Saffron in Hindi.   The expensive and potent natural resource is known as the Spice of the Gods and has been used in Indian beauty rituals for centuries to firm and smooth dry skin.  Coming from the dried stigmas of the saffron crocus, it takes 75,000 blossoms or 225,000 hand-picked stigmas to make a single pound.  One ounce of saffron is literally worth its weight in gold.

The line consists of 3 skincare products:

Pore Minimizing Indian Clay Masque – Featuring Triphala Radiance™ complex, Saffron, Indian clay, Kokum Butter, Aloe Vera, and Hyaluronic Acid; this masque deep-cleans, minimizes the appearance of pores, and moisturizes the skin. $29.50/6 oz 

Triphala Radiance Firming Serum  –  three transforming herbal extracts –  Amla, Bibitaki and Haritaki – fuse together to replenish and reawaken skin, imparting pure and natural radiance.  $49.50/1.7 oz 

Dark Circle Brightening Cream with Triphala Radiance™ and Eyeseryl® for Puffy Eyes– A unique combination of Indian Botanicals, Peptides, Hyaluronic Acid, vitamins C and K1, and Chamomile counteract three prime signs of aging around the eye area—moisture loss, reduction of elasticity, and free radical damage. $37.90/ 15 ml

THE GIVEAWAY!


We will be giving away 1 full size mask and 1 full size eye cream (above) – both are must-haves for beautiful, radiant skin!

Total Value: $67.40

How To Enter:

Contest is open to United States participants, only. You must leave a comment below with you your facebook name (very important!), be subscribed for our newsletter (subscribe at the right) AND LIKE US ON FACEBOOK (you can like us on the right side of the site)! We will notify the winner via a post on our Facebook page! Once notified on Facebook, you will have 24 hours to respond to the post – or we will choose someone else. Winners are chosen at random. We do check to make sure that you are subscribed to our newsletter… if you are not, you will be disqualified.

Contest ends at 10pm (PST) on thursday, august 4, 2011

That’s all.

Good Luck! You’ll love the products!

 

 

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INSPIRATION: Mia Farrow

By | inspiration | 2 Comments

The latter part of Mia Farrow’s life has been overshadowed by controversy – largely due to her longtime boyfriend, Woody Allen, marrying her adopted daughter, Soon Yi. Never-the-less, in her earlier years, Farrow was quite the movie star.

Married to Frank Sinatra, lead actress in the Roman Polanski’s 1968 horror hit, Rosemary’s Baby, Farrow looked and played the part of Hollywood starlet to perfection. She was that natural beauty mixed with feminine innocence that the late 1960’s was churning out in droves. But Mia Farrow stood out from the crowd- she had something rare. For one thing, that bone structure is unparalleled. Not many can pull off a boy cut and still look so damn angelic. And then there are those eyes, beautiful yet soulful. But it’s the hair – the pixie cut, that really made Mia Farrow a star.

Like 1960’s model Twiggie, when Farrow chopped her locks into a short pixie, it became an instant hit. One that is still emulated today with the likes of celebrities like Emma Watson and Michelle Williams. So few can pull it off like Mia, and so few have. She literally legitimized the boy cut on women – making it sexy and feminine and glamorous. And for that, Farrow is a timeless beauty inspiration.

Here are a few of my favorite Mia Farrow images:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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MAC + Cindy Sherman Collaboration

By | makeup | 14 Comments

MAC is known for their out-of-the-box thinking, but they really went above and beyond with their latest collaboration – one with artist/ photographer Cindy Sherman. For those not in the know, Cindy Sherman has become widely successful for injecting herself as the subject of her own photographs. “Through a number of different series of works, Sherman has raised challenging and important questions about the role and representation of women in society, the media and the nature of the creation of art.” source

I’m quite impressed by this latest collaboration, not just because of my respect for Sherman as an artist (although I do have the utmost respect for her), but also because of the melding of two great art forms – makeup and photography (the former actually being recognized as an art form is major).

As always, Sherman models the colors and looks on herself in a series of 3 wildly fun and outrageous portraits. Here’s a first look:

 

 

 

And here are the deets on the collection, due to launch September 29th for a limited edition run (until October 27th)

Fluidline ($15.00 U.S. / $18.00 CDN)

Ash Violet Blackened purple (Limited Edition)
Blacktrack Solid flat black

Lipstick ($14.50 U.S. / $17.50 CDN)

Fleshpot Pale muted pinky beige (Satin) (Permanent at PRO)
Violetta Bright clean violet purple (Amplified) (Permanent at PRO)
X-S Dirty red chestnut (Satin) (Permanent)
Plum Bright Purple (Satin) (Limited Edition)
Neon Orange Bright clean orange (Amplified) (Permanent at PRO)
Show Orchid Vivid hot pink (Amplified) (Permanent at PRO)
Fusion Pink Bright coral (Amplified) (Permanent at PRO)
Ruby Woo Vivid bluish-red (Matte) (Permanent)
See more info & photos!

Lip Erase ($18.50 U.S. / $22.00 CDN)

Dim N37 (Permanent at PRO)
Pigment ($20.00 U.S. / $24.00 CDN)

Tan Muted pinky brown bronze (Permanent)
Emerald Dusk Deep yellow blue with white pearl (Limited Edition)
Blue Storm Rich metallic blue (Limited Edition, Repromote)
Starless Night Deep black purple with light purple pearl (Limited Edition)
Neo-Orange Intense neon salmon (Matte) (Permanent at PRO)
Magenta Madness Intense neon blue pink (Matte) (Permanent at PRO)
Violet Vivid bright violet purple (Frost) (Permanent)
Golden Olive High frosted green-gold (Frost) (Permanent)
Lash ($15.00 U.S. / $18.00 CDN)

36 (Permanent)
Parlor Smoke Eyeshadow Quad ($38.00 U.S. / $45.00 CDN)

Parlor Smoke Mauve grey (Frost) (Limited Edition)
Cross Cultural Neutral brown (Matte) (Limited Edition, Repromote)
Steel Almost black (Veluxe Pearl) (Limited Edition)
Indigo Navy (Matte) (Limited Edition)
Bronzing Powder ($23.00 U.S. / $27.50 CDN)

Solar Riche Mid-tone deep orange brown (Limited Edition, Repromote)
Nail Lacquer ($15.00 U.S. / $18.00 CDN)

Coco Clay Warm chocolate (Limited Edition)
Oyster Shell Light stone grey (Limited Edition)
Kohl Power ($15.00 U.S. / $18.00 CDN)

Feline Rich black (Limited Edition, Repromote)
Eyeshadow ($15.00 U.S. / $18.00 CDN)

Three Ring Yellow Yellow green (Veluxe Pearl) (Limited Edition)
Passionate Real mid-tone red (Matte) (Permanent)
Blue Candy Clean blue (Satin) (Limited Edition)
Shock-a-holic Deep purple (Satin) (Limited Edition, Repromote)
Royale Clean violet (Matte) (Limited Edition)
Chromagraphic Pencil ($15.00 U.S. / $18.00 CDN)

Process Magenta Matte magenta (Permanent at PRO)
Basic Red Primary red (Permanent at PRO)
Hi-Def Cyan Cyan blue (Permanent at PRO)
Rich Purple Dense purple (Permanent at PRO)
Mineralize Skinfinish ($28.00 U.S. / $33.50 CDN)

Lightscapade Soft candlelit beige with multi-dimensional shimmer (Limited Edition, Repromote)
Porcelain Pink Soft pinky coral with gold veining (Limited Edition, Repromote)
Jumbo Penultimate Eyeliner ($19.50 U.S. / $23.50 CDN)

Rapidblack True black (Limited Edition, Repromote) (Permanent in small size)
Lipglass ($14.50 U.S. / $17.50 CDN)

C-Thru Peachy beige with shimmer (Limited Edition, Repromote)
Pink Fade Pale pink (Limited Edition)
Orange Tempera Pale peach (Limited Edition)
Good Times Pale mauve (Limited Edition)
Angel Flame Quad ($38.00 U.S. / $45.00 CDN)

Chamomile Creamy pale yellow (Satin) (Limited Edition, Repromote)
Feather Pink Mid-tone pink (Satin) (Limited Edition)
Angel Flame Coral that flashes pink/yellow (Frost) (Limited Edition)
Gravel Blue-grey (Matte) (Limited Edition)

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TREND: Coral, The Color For Summer

By | trends | 5 Comments

With just over a month left of summer, we thought we’d give you one final color trend you need to be wearing come beach or bbq – coral! Just last week Rose Byrne was spotted wearing a coral lip to the  Zimmerman 2011 Resort Collection dinner in Hollywood. Celebrity makeup artist Fiona Stiles created the “bright, happy” look.

We spoke with Fiona along with 4 other amazingly gifted makeup artists to find out their tips on how to wear coral right, why coral is summer’s it color, and their must-have product recommendations.

Celebrity Makeup Artist Fiona Stiles: “Coral works on all skin tones and is more fun and festive than a red or pink lip (it also makes teeth look nice and white). It’s less vixeny than red and more sophisticated than shocking pink. With fair skin it gives a beautiful contrast to the skin and with warmer skin tones it brings out the pretty golden undertones.”

Product Picks: “My hands down favorite coral lipstick is Ginger Fawn from Tom Ford’s Private Collection. It’s not too orange, not too pink amd is the perfect texture.”

M·A·C Cosmetics Senior Artist Chantel Miller: “The coral trend is about the 70’s coming back. The trend began lightly in NY and then in Milan.  The difference this season is thatcoral is being used as a monochromatic “look” rather than a single point of reference in a makeup.  What makes this easy to wear is that one product can be used in multiple places.

Remember coral will always be a color that is celebrated in trend because it is a basic skin tone enhancer for a glamorous smokey eye, an angelic dash of color when romantic makeup is the rage and just an all around shade that works well at anytime.  When the trend focuses on coral you can really let it loose!”

Product Picks: “Try MAC Cosmetics Powder Blush in Peaches or M·A·C PRO Cream Colour Base in Virgin Isle, lightly applied to eyes lips and cheeks, the trick is to keep it all quite sheer.  Perfectly applied mascara is a must, try M·A·C Cosmetics Mascara in Haute & Naughty Lash, and slightly tanned skin can really work if coral feels like too much color for you, try M·A·C Cosmetics Bronzing Powder in Matte Bronze or Refined Golden.”

Lancôme National Makeup Artist Alex Sanchez: “Coral has a wonderful brightening effect for the face. Be sure to choose coral lipstick shades that are creamy and glossy vs. matte and metallic. Think modern beach-peachy vs. dated frosty-apricot.”



Celebrity Makeup Artist Beau Nelson: “Coral makeup looks great on everyone, and its particularly easy to wear in the summer months when you have a bit of a tan, although I also love coral makeup on very pale skin.

Coral cream blush is a must have for summer because its easy and its dual purpose. Using your index finger and middle finger pick up product and then rub the product on the same fingers from the opposite hand. Use a gentle tapping motion on the cheeks with both hands at once to evenly distribute the color onto the cheeks, and the tapping motion will blend it for you.

A bright coral lip is a great summer evening statement. Apply straight from the tube and then use a light tapping motion of your index finger to push the color out to the edges so its soft and blended looking. Dust bronzer all over the face and add two coats of mascara to complete the look. Softly metallic coral blush is a pretty way to enhance skin, try layering it over an existing matte blush to add dimension and create a shade all your own.”

Product Picks: NARS Gina blush; MAC Virgin Isle Cream Color Base; Illamasqua Mistress Intense Gloss; Chanel Orange Fizz Nail Color; Glominerals Passion Fruit Lipstick”

Dior Celebrity Makeup Artist Ricky Wilson: “Coral is always a great color to wear in the summer because it looks best on sun kissed skin. It is also a color that any skin tone can wear with confidence if done right.

Eyes: Wearing color is tough for many women but if you keep the brighter color sweep on your lids you will avoid looking to bright and made up. Coral shades can be worn as an instant eye popping look in just a few steps. I like to take one color and sweep it on the lid blending up to the crease, followed by a touch of brown eye pencil and Diorshow Blackout mascara.

Cheeks: Who doesn’t love a nice summer flush?? It’s the easiest way to pull your look together in the summer without adding lots of makeup. One of my fave summer looks is blushing the apples of the cheeks with the new Diorblush in Pink in Love and adding a touch of mascara and lip gloss.

Lips: Corals can be bold or sheer for the lips as both look amazing depending on your own personal style of makeup. The key to wearing coral in the summer is ditch the harsh lip liner. You want the edges of your pout to look soft and natural. Try blotting the lipstick on with your finger starting in the center of your mouth and work out towards the edges. Feel free to gloss this look for a nice succulent lip or keep it demi matte for a retro coral effect.”

My favorite coral color picks:

Lancome Replenishing & Enhancing Lipcolor in Coral Ribbon

Givenchy Gloss Interdit in Succulent Orange

Rouge Dior in Coral Serum

Too Faced Full Bloom Cheek & Lip Creme Color In Prim & Poppy

Aubrey Organics Powder Blush in Bronzed Peach

 

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Happy 5th Beauty Banter…

By | Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Beauty Banter turns 5 this month and we thought we’d celebrate with a MAKEOVER…

Here it is – the new and improved Beauty Banter. Easier to navigate, new features, new design, same great content.

Let us know if there is anything you’d like to see us add, or a specific topic you’d like covered … it may be our birthday, but we’d never be here if it weren’t for YOU – so, thanks to our beautiful and loyal readers.

Enjoy!

P.S. Like us on Facebook! Follow us on Twitter! Sign up for our newsletter! (all on the right sidebar).

xoxo,

Beauty Banter

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DIY: Foot Scrubs

By | diy | 12 Comments

Feet are in full fashion come summer. If you’re not flaunting your feet in sandals, then chances are you’re walking around the beach barefoot.

So, you’ll want to have flawless feet. Not a hair (yuck) or a dry skin misplaced.

I searched my files for my favorite Do It Yourself foot scrubs (+ a great one to buy when in a rush and/ or not the ingredient-mixing type of girl). Here are my top 5:

1 – Strawberry Foot Scrub

Ingredients

8-10 strawberries
2 tablespoons Apricot oil (you may substitute with olive oil
1 teaspoon of coarse salt, such as Kosher salt, or Sea Salt
Preparation

Mix all ingredients into a paste, massage into feet, rinse and pat dry

source

2 – Honey & Almond Foot Scrub

Ingredients

Honey Almond Foot Scrub Recipe
3 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon brown sugar
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
11 almonds (1/2 oz.)
Juice of ¼ lemon

Grind almonds into a fine meal in a blender or food processor. Mix almonds, olive oil, honey, brown sugar, and juice of lemon. Rub onto feet and massage, then rinse off. Makes enough for a single foot scrub application.

source

3 – Salt Foot Scrub

Ingredients

1 cup of sea salt or Epsom salt
1/2 cup of cold water
2 drops of lavender essential oil

Start off by gradually adding water to salt and lavender oil
As you are adding it, you want to make sure the mix starts looking like a paste. It has to be not too liquid and not too solid, it should be like soft though otherwise it will run between your fingers
Rub your feet and soles in circular motion
Rinse off with warm water.

source

4 –  Natural Lemony Mint Foot Scrub

Ingredients

Lemon softens and brightens your dull-looking feet while mint cools and refreshes tired feet.
1 lemon
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon sweet almond oil
15 fresh mint leaves, chopped
2-3 drops lemon essential oil

Slice the lemon into small pieces. Place them in a blender and form a pulp. Remove and then add sugar, almond oil, mint leaves and lemon essential oil.

source

5 – Store Bought!

Aromafloria For Feet’s Sake Foot Scrub Tube – A paraben-free, lemon-scented foot scrub that is both refreshing and exfoliating as it removes dry skin leaving legs and feet happy and soft! PRICE TAG: $11.99

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Summer Hair Repair

By | hair | 4 Comments

I find that my scalp becomes excessively more oily yet my hair more dry during the summer season. I chalk this up to humidity and product build-up (scalp oiliness) mixed with sun and salt water (dry ends) – a deathly combination for your strands. So, every Sunday night, I like to do a little Rx on my hair and scalp.

I start with a Clarifying Shampoo – one that removes excess oil and product build-up. Pureology makes my current favorite as it is sulfate-free and does a fantastic job of removing all unwanted guck and grease due to the unbearable humidity.

Then to take care of the dryness that is destroying my ends, I like to do a hair mask immediately following the Clarifying Purify Shampoo. I think of it as a purging of all product build-up and then a replenishment of all lost moisture. I use Pureology’s Hydra Cure Intense Moisture Hair Masque on my ends only and let it settle in for about ten minutes. This is the perfect time to shave my legs (the most lothesome of all beauty traditions!) or, perhaps, use a face mask. Then I rinse and let my hair air dry while I sleep, waking up to beautifully clean, refreshed and rehydrated hair.

The combination of a strong wash and hydration offers the perfect antidote to summer’s offensive weather and the toll it takes on your lovely locks.

Keep them healthy with a little Sunday night hair repair. The rest of the week’s going to be a killer. And Sunday night you’ll have to do it all over again.

PRICE TAG: shampoo – $25.00 / mask – $34.95

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Bathing Beauty: Sarah Howard

By | bathing beauties | 8 Comments

Perhaps the question I am asked the most is “what are your favorite products?” That’s like asking someone who works at Willy Wonka what is his favorite candy – next to impossible to answer. As a beauty writer, I am constantly testing new products so I have a new favorite every few days. For example, my love for mascara is a constant, but the mascara I use is ever-changing. I go from high-end to drugstore back to high-end — and I’ve found many that are must-haves!

But, alas, here it is. Not necessarily my favorites, but my beauty staples. The products that will forever remain in my beauty arsenal, despite the other favorites that come and go… So, have a peak —

What are your top 5, can’t-live-without products?
1 – Laura Mercier Oil-Free Tinted Moisturizer with SPF 20 in Sand– I write about this product often, and I use it even more frequently. It is, by far, the best tinted moisturizer I have found on the market. It evens out my skin tone and doesn’t make it look like I’m wearing a face full of makeup. Plus, oil-free is a major bonus.
2 – Tarte Hotel Heiress Mineral Bronzer – I like the look of a sun-kissed face, but learned in my 20’s that sun on my face is the enemy. That’s when I fell in love with bronzer. I use many bronzers but always return to Hotel Heiress. I think it gives the perfect golden hue; the closest color to actual sun.
3 – MAC Brow Set in Mynx – I received this in a PR mailing. At the time, I was using Anastasia’s tinted Brow Gel. That changed the moment I tried Brow Set. The brush gets into my hairs, covering the sparse areas with the tinted, brownish hue. The result: fuller arches that stay in place. I believe good eyebrows really frame the face. Brow Fix is the one product I use every day, without fail, even if I’m going totally bare-faced.
4 – Bioderma Crealine H20 – This is a relatively new product on my radar (about 3 years old), but I cannot live without it. It’s a French find, used in France as a waterless face wash because the Parisian women believe the water is too harsh for their delicate faces. I use it as a makeup remover. It takes off everything from waterproof mascara to HD Foundation. And it’s so gentle, you don’t feel it or smell it. It leaves no residue and I’ve never had a break-out from it, ever.  I JUST discovered that you can purchase it on amazon.com (click on the link above to redirect to the product), but, of course, it is more expensive than in Paris.
5 – Make Up For Ever Star Powder in Bronze Brown #930 – I’ve been using star powder since I was a teenager and, while I’ve tried other products that are similar, nothing compares to the pigment of star powder. Bronze Brown is my favorite and a staple in my beauty bag as I am a sucker for a gilded eye (always have been) and this color is the perfect gold to cover the entire lid. If I just want a hint of drama, I use my pinky finger, dab it into the powder and apply only into the inner corners of my eyes. You can never go wrong with gold.

What is your all-time favorite product?
I definitely don’t have an all-time favorite product. There are just too many fabulous products to choose from and too many more being made. But I’d say good brushes are crucial. And one tool that every beauty lover needs to own is the Beauty Blender. It will change the way you apply makeup. At the very least, the way you apply foundation and cover-up. It leaves your skin with an air-brushed effect while still giving you full coverage. It’s a genius product!

What product do you buy in bulk?
 Nivea Cherry Tinted Lip Care. I have been using it since it was Labello (Nivea acquired them a few years back) and you could only buy the balm in Europe. It’s my ultimate lip balm – moisturizing – never sticky -, with a hint of natural redish hue (my lips are quite pale, so I need a pop of color to make them stand out).

Favorite hair product?
Bumble and Bumble Curl Conscious Reactivating Mist. I used to live for John Frieda’s Ocean Waves and when the product was discontinued, my hair – and I – had a mini-meltdown. Then we found Reactivating Mist. It does the trick – gives my wavy hair a kick so that I can have just-stepped-out-of-the-ocean-and-off-the-beach hair all day, everyday if I choose.

You moisturize your face with…
AMOREPACIFIC Moisture Bound Refreshing Hydra-Gel Oil-Free in the summer. Has a very light, gel-like consistency and is so refreshing yet hydrates without leaving the slightest bit of shine or grease. In winter I use AMOREPACIFIC Moisture Bound Vitalizing Creme which is a bit thicker but just as amazing. And for those brutally cold and dry days, I slather on a tiny amount of Weleda Skin Foods. It’s like medicine for the face – it’ll fix any cracking problem!

Favorite body product?

My obsession with body products is out of control. I love a good exfoliator, body wash, body lotion, bath soak – you name it. But a staple is Jurlique’s Rose Shower Gel and Body Care Lotion. Rose is one of my favorite body scents and Jurlique nails it! Not too perfumey, not too mild – it’s just the right amount of rose garden. The shower gel seriously lathers and the body lotion is light and fluid yet moisturizes and keeps my skin feeling incredibly soft.

Favorite beauty secret you’ve picked up along the way?

Aquaphor fixes any beauty problem you have – from zits (yep, put it on your pimple!), to cracked cuticles, to eye makeup remover, to unruly eyebrows. It’s also great as a quick fix to use as a highlighter on cheekbones, mix it in with your favorite shadow to create a cream consistency (fab for the “gilded” look), add some foundation – a shade darker than your natural skin tone – and apply to legs and arms as your very own, DIY tinted body oil (models use Aquaphor and the likes on their limbs on photo shoots because the sheen adds a thinning effect). But my favorite use for Aquaphor has to be as a faux mascara… that you can sleep in! It’ll add sheen and length (although not color) to your lashes. So, if you have a boy spending the night, apply some Aquaphor to your lashes, cheekbones, lips and brows and you’ll look fresh and naturally made-up – without makeup!

Beauty icon you admire?
I’m really into Jane Birkin these days. There was such an ease to her beauty and she was quite comfortable in the nude, which I always find beautiful – when it’s tasteful. She’s my summer beauty muse! For all of my beauty inspirations, click here!

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About Beauty Banter
Beauty Banter was launched in July of 2006 as a comprehensive beauty blog covering trends, tips and tricks, insider secrets, and weekly must-haves. Beauty Banter has a reputation of being on the cutting edge of emerging trends and product launches so our readers are always the first to know what’s hot and what’s just not.