Monday, February 24, 2014

A True Sanctuary

We have a special guest post today BrainyBeautys—

My wonderfully beautiful and game sister, Christine, gave Sanctuary Spa Facial Youth Boosting Facial in a Box Kit a whirl. Sanctuary Spa is the UK's number one day spa, and specially designed this "revolutionary" facial to include all the steps carried out in a professional spa treatment in order to deliver visibly firmer and plumper skin at home. The treatment includes a single sample of products found within Sanctuary Spa's Youth Boosting skincare range that when used together, enhance the other's skin boosting qualities.

Christine's insightful review is as follows!
The before

Step 1- Warming Exfoliator/Scrub: This had a clean fresh scent and provided a warming, relaxing sensation when rubbing in. Although it was sticky upon application, I definitely noticed smooth, softer skin after washing off.
Warming scrub doing it's warming thing.

Step 2 - Time Renewal Mask: Cooling, with a pleasant fresh lemony scent. I experienced a tingling sensation after a few minutes on my face and found it to be very hydrating. The instructions also call for you to put the entire contents of the mask on your face, but that felt like it was too much and maybe a waste.

Step 3 - Serum: A little goes a long way here! It was very hydrating and smoothing, but also unfortunately a bit gross smelling... kinda like a sweaty locker room. Yuck! Although perhaps small price to pay for beauty?
Looking good there!

Step 4 - Lift and Brighten Eye Cream: The eye cream had a Vaseline like consistency, and went on smooth. I focused only on the crows feet and under eye area and found it to be especially cooling on the eye area. Again, a bit of an odd smell... not bad, not good, just odd.
The eyes have it—do they seem brighter to you too?

Step 5 - Night Concentrate: Ahhh! The concentrate features a fresh, clean lemony scent and was very hydrating. Not at all greasy which was awesome.

Ta-dah!!! The final outcome: Hydrated and loving it.

Final verdict? Overall, the mask was my favorite. I could definitely notice a difference in the hydration of my skin throughout the day. I usually have very dry skin, so it was nice to notice the hydration. Not sure of the price, but I'm sure it's much cheaper than getting an actual facial at the spa with probably similar results. I've only had one spa facial before, but my skin felt similar after doing this at home kit. I would recommend the kit to anyone looking for a little complexion boost- it was easy and fun to use and left my skin feeling great.

Thanks Christine! You rocked it!

 Sanctuary Spa Youth Boosting Facial in a Box is priced at $39, and can be purchased through QVC and

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Totally TIGI

Looking for some easy ways to snazz up your ‘do without a complete overhaul? You don’t necessarily need to call the salon—just grab a few fantastic hair products that will leave you with the sweet (or saucy!) style you’re aiming for. 

Bed Head by TIGI Manipulator: Feeling daring? This fiber-forming cream is perfect for creating spikes, twisted dreads or other punky looks. Not so much? It also adds awesome body and texture when worked throughout tresses.

Our take: This blue goo totally delivers and gives just the right amount of definition to roughed out, bed head-y hair. One caveat of note: it is a bit drippy, so exercise a bit of caution when opening.

$18.50 at

Catwalk by TIGI Straight Collection Sleek Mystique Blow Out Balm: Prep hair before blow drying for touchable, glossy hair without losing volume. Silk and soy combine with a blend of dragon fruit and bamboo to give your straight style lasting hydration.

Our take: Wowza! Our at-home blowout never looked or felt glossier! All it took was one pump of the seemingly glitter-flecked goodness too. A total winner.

$19.95 at

Catwalk by TIGI Session Series Salt Spray: Explore that casual cool, model off duty side with a spray that promises texture, body, volume and light, pliable hold.

Our take: Hands-down FAVORITE! I am always on the hunt for a sea salt spray that actually delivers piece-y texture to my fine locks. Most products give some sort of texture and rough lift at first, but I’ve always found myself disappointed by the time I got to work. This is the spray I’ve been searching for. I love it love it love it. Sold for life!

Bed Head by TIGI Hard Head Hairspray: Get a hairspray that can withstand the test of time on the most outrageous styles. Dries instantly and the more you spray, the more it holds.

Our take: Definitely the ideal product for mastering a hard-to-hold style. I also found it a nice finishing touch after using the Sea Salt Spray. If you’re going for hold and shine though, I might look elsewhere, as this is more for gravity-defying bold styles.  

$16.50 at

TIGI products might seem a bit pricey, but the quality is more than worth it and they’ll last you for months. Oh, and did I also mention that each of these smells absolutely, positively, wonderfully DIVINE? Trust me when I tell you, TIGI is where it’s at!

Friday, February 14, 2014

Valentine's Day Special: Sweet Sensory Treats

Happy Valentine's Day our gorgeous BrainyBeautys!

Whether you're enjoying some time with a special someone or happily flying solo, we got plenty of fabulous goodies to indulge your five senses this most romantical of weekends.

SMELL: Isn't chocolate the unofficial official food of Valentine's Day? Bring that cocoa goodness into the bath with Philip B. Chocolate Milk Body Wash and Bubble Bath, a nurturing blend of cocoa butter, oat protein and wheat amino acids and moisturizing aloe.
The warm scent of this yummy product is enough to put anyone in a calm, sensual mood. Plus, I love the playful yet sophisticated packaging!
 Philip B. Chocolate Milk Body Wash and Bubble Bath, $8-$35.

TOUCH: Get skin that begs to be touched with CapriClear Moisturizing Spray. Accepted by the National Eczema Association this handy spray is hypoallergenic, fragrance free and made with 100% fractionated coconut oil.
I am totally diggin' on this stuff right now- the spray makes application wonderfully convenient for even hard to reach places like your back, and it also leaves a sexy sheen before it quickly dries.
Capri Clear Moisturizing Spray, $10.99 for 1.2oz at Ulta. 

SIGHT: Do your favorite date night heels take your swagger from sexy to sad? Sticky Shoes are your answer! The ingenious Sticky Shoes are adhesive stripes designed to keep your feet from slipping out of high heels. Simply adhere one strip to the heel/insole of each shoe and you're ready to strut your stuff all night long. So simple, so useful, so very awesome.
 Sticky Shoes, $8.95 for 24 double-sided strips. 

TASTE: Sure, a box of chocolates isn't a revolutionary Valentine's Day suggestion, but trust me when I tell you that Edward Marc Chocolatier chocolates are NOT your ordinary sweets! Not only is the packaging sumptuous, but every confection is melt-in-your-mouth DELICIOUS.
The Vintage Heart Box ($35 for 16oz.) comes filled with an assortment of Edward Marc's best selling chocolates. Choose amongst yummy coconut, luscious creams and caramels made with milk from America's dairy farms.
 But the 5oz. Chocolate Lover's Heart ($10) truly stole MY heart. It's edible right down to its Valentine's Day box of molded milk chocolate (drool!) and is filled with the tastiest non pareils I have ever eaten.
 I urge you to try these treats and also check out the rest of Edward Marc Chocolatier extensive assortment ASAP—you and your Valentine will thank me!

SOUND: Your boo will be fixated on every word you say when you wear one of Illamasqua's amorous scarlet lip shades from their "I'm The One" Collection.
 Maneater Lipstick is an intense, full coverage formula that's designed to last through date night and then some-wink! It's a gorgeous true red with blue undertones that will make your teeth look brighter and whiter too!
Feisty Lip Pencil is a bright rouge, perfect for creating a precise and alluring lip.
You can qualify to win these and more pieces from Illamasqua's "I'm The One" Collection too! Just shout out @illamasqua on Facebook and Twitter with a red lipstick selfie and include #ImTheOne through February 15. Simply ravishing!

Cheers to a fabulous holiday all!

Monday, February 10, 2014

A Big NYFW Yeehaw!

New York Fashion Week F/W 2014 is in full swing and we're excited to bring you exclusive backstage beauty reports! First up, the cool, colorful Tibi.

This season, Aveda Global Creative Director Antoinette Beenders created a "country girl meets urbanite" hair look. "The collection story tells the intersection of the pastoral and the urban," said Tibi designer Amy Smilovic. "We wanted the hair to express a clean, natural feel, but still convey soul and a refined grittiness."

The resulting style was fresh, fun and totally wearable in the real world too. Ride off into your own urban sunset by following these simple steps:

1) Spray Pure Abundance Style Prep liberally into the hair all over to boost volume and create texture.

2) Take an inch wide section at the top of the head at the hairline and create a tight braid down the center. Stop braiding at the crown and use an elastic that matches your hair color so that it blends in with the rest of your tresses.

3) Take a small section of hair above the left ear and braid down to the end. Repeat on the right side and connect both braids underneath the remaining hair at the nape of the neck to hold hair away from the face. 

4) Create 3 large, loose braids with the remainder of hair at the back and quickly clamp a flat iron down them. Gently unravel, tousle and run Dry Remedy Moisturizing Oil through hair for soft, gentle waves, with a little shine.

5) Finish off the look with a misting of Control Force Hair Spray for strong, but barely-there hold.
Your tools!

Pictures, quotes and info above all courtesy Aveda. All Aveda products used in this look can be found at or an Aveda salon near you.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Bust Out of that Style Rut

New York Fashion Week Fall 2014 kicks off this Thursday and that means stellar style snaps on AND off the runways!

We thought we'd take some current street pics as inspiration for all of us to try out some simple, chic new looks.

1) 9-5 AND THEN SOME: Make your office attire weekend brunch appropriate and pair it with a crisp white tee and cute patterned kicks. A cross body bag adds the perfect casual cool finishing touch.

2) WHIMSICAL WHITE: Beat those S.A.D. blues and grab a fresh white beret instead of your old black beanie. Super cute and functional = win win!

3) BOYFRIEND OF THE YEAR: Skinny jeans have reigned supreme for the past few years, but now, more loose and relaxed boyfriend cuts are ready to take over. It's easy to veer into sloppy territory when you go baggy on bottom, so make sure you keep the rest of your outfit structured (like the dope coat here) and definitely opt for a heeled shoe.

All photos courtesy