All Posts By:  beautybanter


WEEKLY MUST-HAVE: X Out Wash-In Treatment For Acne

By | weekly must-have | 2 Comments

When I was a teen, I had Proactiv to get me through those embarrassing break-out years. Now, the teens have a product that, in my opinion, is even better: X Out Wash-In. Essentially, X Out is a three-in-one benzoyl peroxide treatment that acts as a face wash, a face mask and a zit zapper (ala spot treatment). And guess what: it comes from those fine minds that brought us Proactiv!

The wash is basically the entire three step original Proactiv treatment program bottled into one product. It has something crazy like 8% benzoyl peroxide (the ingredient in both the original Proactiv wash and lotion), and it has that slight scrub effect, which I love. It makes me feel like it’s really getting in deep with my pores and sloughing away all the dead skin and blackheads! I’ve been using it every day obsessively and I already notice that my skin has less oil and less blackheads… SCORE!

Benzoyl Peroxide is an incredibly potent acne-fighting ingredient that may dry out your skin (I don’t have a problem with it, however). If so, use once a day or every other day.

How To Use:

As a face wash, apply to damp skin and rub in for 2 minutes. Rinse.

As a face mask, apply a thin layer to your entire face and leave on for 10 minutes. Rinse.

As a spot treatment, apply the formula just in the spot. Leave on and let the benzoyl do it’s trick.

Click HERE to order. Just like the original Proactiv, the new X Out comes with a free gift-with-purchase (yay!!!). You get a tube of shine control that, I assume, controls the shine for the super oily kids out there. All of this for only $19.95 a month!

(P.S. Sadly, I’m no longer a teen but I still heart – and use – this wash!)



By | inspiration | No Comments

Color is making a comeback (did it ever leave?). Ever since spotting the pink hair from New York S/S 2012 Fashion Week (click here for a recap), I’ve been dreaming of color everywhere.

I am a bronzy, browns, black liner type of girl. I had a period in my college years when I thought it would be fun to play with a green, blue and purple eye, but then I abandoned the look for a more traditional lid. Every now and again, you’ll spot me with a khaki lined eye or a pop of blue-hue mascara, but other than that, I reserved the real color for my lips.

Lately, I’ve been dabbling with a bolder eye – a pale eggplant swept across my lids, once there was a green shadow and liner. And I’m super into the bright pigments.

Hey, if the Marchesa girls can saunter down a runway with a bold mane, I can add some color into my makeup routine. Yesterday, I focused on the bold day lip (a pout that I have been sporting as of late), today I wanted to share some amazing photos that inspire my new love for color.

NOTE: I wouldn’t necessarily wear any of these looks but I do use them as color references.

*all photos from – follow us for daily beauty images!


FAVORITES: The Bold Day Lip

By | favorites | No Comments

There’s nothing like a little color to make your face smile. And, considering that we’re officially into fall territory (although this 80 degree NYC weather could have you fooled), a pop of bold is sure to brighten even the most bleak and grey of days.

That’s why I’m currently obsessing over the bold lip — even for day wear! Yes, the bold lip has mostly been associated with your night looks – party, clubbing or a black tie affair – but I’m ready to take it to the streets (during sunlight hours, of course).

Here’s the trick – the bold day lip should be more of a tint/ stain or a creamy gloss. Stay away from the seriously pigmented lipsticks. While the color choice is up to you – red, coral, pink –  use a more sedated variation of your preferred hue and make sure that you can control the boldness. For unwanted color, pat your lips down with tissue. For more color, layer away with additional tint, stain or creamy gloss. Your lip will still be bold, but never overBOLD.

TIP: Wearing a bold lip means you are choosing to focus your makeup look on your mouth. Keep eyes and skin simple. Perhaps, a few coats of mascara and tinted moisturizer for coverage. THAT’S IT!

Here are a few of my favorite day colors for the bold lip look:

1 – Benefit Posietint – Benefit makes some amazing stains with staying power. This poppy tinted lip stain will give you the coral color your crave without the shock value of a full-out coral lipstick. If your lips look too parched with just the stain, layer with a sheer coral gloss like Dior Addict Lip Polish in Glow Expert, a sheer light coral hue.

2 – Jouer Tint in Amaryllis – I initially used this color for my cheeks, then recently started using on my lips. It’s fab! The perfect color and consistency of a creamy coral with a splash of red that gives lips the boldness without the crazy brightness.

3 – Tarte LipSurgence Natural Lip Stain in Lust – I am so obsessed with Tarte’s lip stains, I think I’ve hit up every color in the range! Lust is a classic red, but ti’s consistency – part stain, part sheen – let’s it be a perfectly acceptable day bold. Plus, you can control the boldness depending on how many times you layer it on your lips.

4 – Laura Mercier Lip Stain in Scarlet – This is a deep red, Old Hollywood Glam, hue and I’m digging rocking it during day light hours. It’s a great stain because you can apply with your fingers, it doesn’t move at all, yet still gives your lips some serious color (more of a sheen color, however). I use a very little, and I pat on lightly. Make no mistakes, even with the tiniest pat, your lips will still be unmistakably red.

5 – Tarte LipSurgence Natural Lip Stain in Amused – I’m a huge fan of the fuchsia lip. With so many variation of hot pink – fluorescent, matte, bright, etc – it’s like a game of try and repeat until you find the perfect shade. Once again, Tarte’s amazing lip stain wins the honors. Part stain, part sheen, this hot pink is definitely bold, but the brightness is controlled by how many layers you choose to apply. A single layer provides just a hint, a few more gives you a sheen hot pink lip. Perfect to get your day lip on.

Acceptable places to wear the day bold lip: the office, lunch with a friend ala ladies who lunch, carpool…

Unacceptable places to wear the day bold lip: a business meeting (use at your discretion), a somber event (may be too happy of a hue), first time you meet his parents (could send the wrong message)…

Are YOU feeling the bold day lip?

face shot

Bathing Beauty: Britt Aboutaleb

By | bathing beauties | 2 Comments

You know that adage, “it’s not the job that makes the person, it’s the person that makes the job?” Well,  this is most certainly true in the case of Britt Aboutaleb. As the style news editor for (she writes and edits the site’s popular fashion blog), Britt has been an integral part in creating the site’s personality and making it a daily must-read.

Read any article that has Britt’s name attached, and you will see her attention to detail. From the words she chooses to the stories she pens, Britt is changing the game of digital coverage one post at a time. In a space that was once inundated with derivative content, Britt brings both her original voice and savvy style experience to Elle’s fashion coverage.

Not exactly makeup obsessed, Britt only caught the beauty bug recently – largely due to her obsession with perfect skin. Don’t be fooled, though, for a beauty novice, she’s got rather good taste (in our humble opinion).

Here, Britt discusses the products that give her that coveted “glow” and her current adoration with anything Tata Harper.

What are your top 5, can’t-live-without products?
1. Tata Harper Rejuvenating Serum. This is the only product I actually can’t live without. I’ve struggled with my skin from the time I hit puberty up until about six months ago when I started using the serum. Now I have that elusive “glow.”
2. Chanel Inimitable Mascara. It earns, “Are those your real lashes?” from strangers almost everyday.
3. Nars The Multiple – Orgasm. Again, obsessed with the glow.
4. Lancome Artliner Precision Point Eyeliner. I love a cat eye and have experimented with dozens of eyeliners; this one is the best (and easiest to apply!).
5. Rodin Olio Lusso. I can definitely live without this, but when I put it on at night my face glows in the morning.

What is your all time favorite product?
Right now it’s anything Tata Harper. I’m obsessed with getting perfect glowing skin (it’s the first time in my life that I’ve come close) and Tata’s products are like magic. As far as makeup, mascara is the only thing I always wear.

What product do you buy in bulk?
I live in a studio in New York, so nothing! Though I’ve probably bought more than one mascara at a time.

What is your favorite hair product?
Charlotte Ronson’s A Perfect Mess Beach Spray makes my hair perfectly messy and smelling like the beach.

You moisturize your face with…
Tata Harper Rejuvenating Serum and a few drops of whatever face oil is out on my sink.

Favorite body product?
In the spring summer I use Bobbi Brown’s Beach Body Oil. It smells ridiculous, like someone bottled the beach. In the winter I use Kiehl’s Crème de Corps Whipped Body Butter, which also smells great, but is thick enough to battle an East Coast winter.

Favorite beauty secret?
Drink a lot of water. I know that’s not a secret, but I can see the difference in my face when I do (or don’t) stay hydrated. Same goes for running.

Beauty icon you admire?
Brigitte Bardot! Or anyone French, really.


FAVORITES: Bronzers for Fall

By | favorites | One Comment

It’s just about that time of year when my skin starts looking dull, lifeless and lackluster. The summer tan fades (a nice golden hue without the sun damage thanks to my SPF, naturally) and the pre-winter paleness sets in.

That’s why I am such a fan of bronzers! I use a bronzer year-round but it’s even more crucial to my makeup routine come fall and winter. Let’s face it, we all look healthier with a bit of bronze.

These are a few of my favorite bronzers this fall:

1 – Clinique Face Bronzing Gel Tint – This isn’t a traditional powder bronzer, but it bronzes just the same. And I LOVE that you can mix it into your foundation or tinted moisturizer for one quick cover-up/ golden glow step. Plus, it doesn’t streak, offers up a fabulous sun-kissed hue that turns my skin from lifeless to vibrant. P.S. It washes off with soap and water! $26.98

2 – Chanel Bronzing Makeup Base – Again, not your traditional powder bronzer. This is an actual base that offers a hint of matte golden hue. It’s a creamy-gel that you can apply with your fingers. It goes on rather light (with a thin layer), so you can build to the color that you choose. I love how, again, this takes the place of a foundation (although you can add a bit of foundation over it for an even more flawless finish, as the gel somewhat stains your skin underneath). $48.00

3 – Dior Bronze Matt Sunshine SPF 20 – I love the totally matte consistency of this powder. It gives me color without the shine and glitter. And you can choose between 4 shades for your perfect sun-kissed hue. Ranges from a healthy matte (light) to a spicy matte (Island Getaway tan). Also, contains SPF – even in the sleet and snow, the sun can rear it’s wrinkled little head. Protect! $42.00

4 – MAC Mineralize Skinfinish Natural – Anyone who has used Skinfinish knows how velvety the powder feels and looks on the face. I love the range of colors (I’m using Give Me Sun! which is a medium sun-kissed shade (perhaps, a California tan). The powder is matte so the color is powerfully pigmented but still quite natural (no sparkles!). $27.00

5 – Tarte Mineral Powder Bronzer in Hotel Heiress – I cannot write a bronzer round-up without mentioning my longtime favorite. The color is literally the perfect shade of suntan and, for the sparkle obsessed, you’ll be happy to know that the powder contains a hint of shimmer (but it’s definitely not overboard – more of a glowy glisten). $29.00

Have a favorite bronzer?
Let us know in the comment section below!


TREND: Cool Nails Now

By | trends | One Comment

Anyone who knows me well, knows that I’m not a polish kind of girl. Sure, the occasional lacquer will coat my nails, but for the most part, I tend to watch the trends from a distance. Sure, I can appreciate the new colors – browns this season, purples last summer, orange and yellow this summer – but when it comes to getting a manicure, I opt out of polish all together. To be honest, polish is a pain. I am constantly using my fingers to type and the lacquer chips off by day two. There’s nothing more trashy looking than chipped polish.

Toes, on the other hand, is an entirely different story (although I’m not one to go out on a limb with that area of my body either. Red is the only color that graces my feet).

But this season, I’ve been seeing all types of fun and inspiring nail looks. From ombre (yep, like the hair!), to metallic silver, to red tassles, the name of the game is “creativity.” Designs are hot, a simple solid shade is passe. This season, it’s all about thinking outside the box – taking your nails to the limit!

Here are my 3 favorite nail looks of the season:

Ombre – My friend Sam Greenes of Blue & Cream was sporting this fab look. She chose to work within the blue family with a gradual change in color from top to bottom of the nail. You can do ombre in practically ANY color!

NOTE: Sam swears by gel manis. This look is the product of a gel mani and the picture was taken TWO WEEKS after the initial manicure. I’m definitely going to be trying the gel mani – chipping polish is a thing of the past? Hallelujah!

Matte Metallic – This is from an Elle Magazine beauty look. I am loving the futuristic silver hue. It’s not like most metallic polishes that give off that glittery, overly shiny, polishy vibe, this is like a sheet of pure silver wrapped around the nail bed. And it’s MATTE metallic!

Tassles – This look comes courtesy of the S/S 2012 Kate Gallagher presentation. Essentially, it’s a maroon painted nail with red string hanging off. It reminds me of a Kabbalah string – Madonna would totally dig this mani! I’m really into how creative this look is – combining textures and materials to create an original finger is so genius! (nails courtesy of Color Club with lead manicurist, Alicia Torello).

Have an awesome nail look? We want to see it!

Email us a picture of your most fabulous mani!





WEEKLY MUST-HAVE: Vapour Organics Elixir Plumping Lip Gloss

By | weekly must-have | No Comments

Here’s a funny story. I have this lip gloss in my bag and I use it on almost a daily basis. The color is magnificent – a sheer plumish hue – and the formula is perfect – just enough shine without the stickiness, and a pop of plumpness for an added bit of rad.

So, I’m exchanging emails with this awesome makeup artist, Eric Sakas, as I’m researching the exact brand of my new must-have lippy. Now, here’s where the story gets crazy: The brand that manufactures the Elixir lippy is called Vapour Organics. Eric Sakas is the CREATOR of Vapour Organic Beauty! How random is that!! I just emailed him gushing over my love for the lippy and my need to try every color in the range.

You know why I love the Elixir lippy, now let me tell you a bit about the colors. There are 12 (swatches below) and they run the color gamut from a baby pink to an earthy brown to a blood red. I am obsessed with the color Vivid (a sheer plum). I use it to make my lips about 2 shades darker than they are and saturated with shine – so that boys will want to kiss them!

As I mentioned, the formula is quite sheen with just the right amount of color, but if you want more boldness you can layer to your likeness (or on top of a favorite lipstick or lip stain).

The most important feature of this gloss is that it’s all natural, organic, in fact. Made with 70% Certified Organic ingredients and 30% natural mineral pigments & vitamins, this stuff is healthy for your lips, your body and the environment.

A word (or several…) from the company:
“Elixir rejuvenates lips with anti-oxidant rich Acai and Goji berries and ultra hydrating, vitamin rich Organic Lecithin and Jojoba oil. Elixir contains Vapour’s lip specific infusion of hydrating Myrrh, healing Lemon Balm, antioxidant Green Tea and anti-microbial Iceland Moss.”

You heard it here: this gloss will forever change your idea of a natural lip gloss. It’s SO good, it’s on par with MAC, NARS and Chanel (in fact, even less sticky than the big brands).

Now I’m off to try the other 11 colors in the range!

PRICE TAG: $22.00


FAVORITES: Rosy Cheeks

By | favorites | 50 Comments

Rosy cheeks are having a moment. And I’m having a moment with rosy cheeks. Ever since the sunshine turned into grey skies and rainfall, my skin has been looking quite lackluster. Sure, a bronzer spices things up, but just the right amount of rosy flush is the perfect remedy for a sallow complexion. And a rosy cheek will never go out of style, it’s universally great on all skin tones (darker rose for darker skin), and it translates from season to season.

Here are a few of my favorite rosy blushes:

1- RMS Beauty Lip2Cheek in Modest (pictured) for paler skin tones and Illusive for darker tones – A cream blush; I apply this with my fingers by dabbing it on to the apples of my cheeks. It’s quite sheer but you can build the color by applying more. Also, works as a lip color. $36.00

2 – Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush in Blushing Bride – the plumy rose powdered hue is very pigmented, therefor a little goes a long way. I am obsessed with these blushes – they really do stay on all day! $25.00

3 – Vapour Organics Aura Multi-Use Blush Classic in Courtesan – A classic rose cream blush offered on a stick! So fun and easy to apply – a few swipes, a quick blend, and you’re good to go. Also works for eyes and lips. The color is a sheer, bright rosy pink. $28.00

4 – Jouer Tint in Petal, a subtle rose, for lighter tones and Dahlia, a deeper magenta rose, (pictured) for darker tones – These tints are creamy yet surprisingly sheer. I apply with a brush for a fabulous air-brushed look. The colors are universally flattering and the tints can be used on lips too! $20.00

5 – *Drugstore Pick* – in Pink Rose – A pigmented pale pink powder blush that blends into a natural rosy, flirty cheek. Use with a big blush brush for an even application, not the brush that accompanies the compact. $4.73

TIP: When applying a cream blush, you can do so with fingers or a blush brush (this gives it a more air-brushed effect). To make the shade pop even more, try layering a cream blush with a powder blush over it. Blush will stay put all day and your cheeks will smile with gratitude!

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.