Reader’s Choice Beauty Awards: Part 1

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Okay you guys, I know this was a long awaited post…and as I was going through ALL of your amazing beauty recommendations…SKINCARE was the #1 type of recommendation you sent in! So Part 1 is going to focus mostly on skincare! And I will save a majority of the rest for Part 2.

I have to admit, I am a complete minimalist when it comes to skincare. I really don’t use much of anything except a moisturizer. So this was a true learning experience for me to see ALL the the many amazing products you all use on the daily…and I am going to have to check a few of them out for SURE.

I had asked for some natural recommendations since eventually I am leaning that direction of switching over some products. That being said…there are still some products that aren’t “natural” that I use and love and I am open to learning about ALL products right now, so I have recommendations on all fronts listed here. I have linked them all for your convenience, especially during this holiday season since you may find something for yourself or as a gift for someone else! Please let me know if you have specific questions about anything!

Without further ado…here are your FAVORITE SKINCARE products!!!

 

Moisturizing Oils:

Cocokind Chia Seed Oil (face)

Cocokind Chia Seed Oil

 

Maya Chia Face Oil

Maya Chia

 

Almond oil (whole body) – no brand specified, but found this one at Target

Almond Oil

Marula Oil (evening) – no brand specified, but found this one at Sephora

Marula Oil

Young Living Rose Ointment

YL Rose Ointment

Doterra Geranium Essential Oil

Doterra Geranium Oil

 

Moisturizing Creams:

 

Belief True Cream Moisturizing Bomb (day)

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Natura Culina Skincare Set – this is actually a full set, not just a moisturizer, but wasn’t sure where to place it

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Young Living Sandalwood Moisturizing Cream

YL Sandalwood

Beautycounter Countermatch Adaptive Moisture Lotion

Beautycounter Adaptive Moisture

Beautycounter Brightening Face Oil

Beautycounter Brightening Face Oil

Doterra Immortelle

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Murad Day Cream (with SPF 30)

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Olay Age Defying

Olay

 

 

Astringent/Toner: 

-Witch Hazel – no brand specified, but I found this one at Target

Thayer's Witch Hazel

Heart Grown Wild

Heart Grown Wild Toner

 

Exfoliator/Scrubs:

Sunday Riley Good Genes Acid Exfoliator

Sunday Riley Good Genes

Beautycounter Exfoliating Facial Scrub

Beautycounter Exfoliator

Homemade Pink Himalayan Salt, coconut oil, essential oils for body – here is a good recipe

Himalayan-Salt-Scrub-Recipe

 

Cleansers:

Philosophy Purity along with a Clarisonic

Philosophy Purity

Beautycounter Cleansing Balm

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Beautycounter Charcoal Cleansing Bar

Beautycounter Charcoal Cleansing Bar

Marie Veronique Replenishing Oil Cleanser

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Serums:

Sunday Riley C.E.O

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Young Living Rejuvenating Serum

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Drunk Elephant C Firma

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Heart Grown Wild

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Aster + Bay Purify Serum

Aster and Bay

Agent Nateur Youth Serum

Agent Nateur Youth Serum

 

Mists:

Beautycounter Rosewater Mist

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SPF:

Josie Maran

Josie Maran SPF

 

Face Masks:

Manuka Honey

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Natura Culina Rose Berry

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Beautycounter Charcoal Mask

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Makeup Remover:

Coconut Oil – How to remove your makeup with coconut oil

Aveeno Wipes

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Hands/Body:

Dr. Bronners (both bar and bottle)

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Dr Bronner Bottle

 

J.R. Watkins Coconut Milk & Honey Hand Cream

JR Watkins Hand Cream

Trader Joe’s Hand Cream

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Lotions:

Homemade beeswax, coconut oil, olive oil combo – Instructions for how to make this

Nourish Organic Lotion

Nourish Organic

 

Eye Creams:

Cocokind MyMatcha Stick – under eye puffiness (also great as a chapstick) – not really a cream

Cocokind MyMatcha Stick

100% Pure Coffee Bean Caffeine Cream

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Young Living Wolfberry Eye Cream

YL Wolfberry Eye Cream

 

Deodorant:

Primal Pit Paste Stick

Primal Pit Paste Stick

Nivea Pure Invisible

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Spruce Tips Apothecary Orange Cardamom

SpruceTipsApothecary

Native Deodorant

Native Deodorant


WHEW!!!!!!! WOW, you guys….I am completely BLOWN AWAY!!!! Thank you SO much for all of your beauty recommendations for Skincare (and a few other things). I will absolutely be trying many of these out, and I hope you are able to do the same!

If you agree with something on this list, I want to hear it!!!

If you believe something needs to be added to this list…I want to know!!!

And lastly…as I work on Part 2, I’m still taking recommendations for:

Concealers

Eye Shadows/Liners

Mascara

Blush

Lipstick

Foundation

Gloss

Nail Polish

Hair Products

Thanks again for all the amazings recs, and I hope you guys are having a fantastic week!!

My Christmas Cards are finished, so now I am busy over here thinking about Christmas shopping and about our new ab + booty focused workout program that is pre-launching SO soon! (December 14th). Getting excited. I just love this time of year!

Hope you are enjoying the holiday season too!

XO,

Gina

Sleek

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You know that lady in your family who gives hugs and smooches and then leaves evidence of said smooch all over everyone?

“Oh I guess you said hello to Aunt so and so, because you have lipstick on your cheek.”

Yeah, that’s me. My poor kids have lipstick smooches on them regularly. So when Suzie suggested I should try out Younique’s Stiff Upper Lip Stain, I figured I would give it a shot! I love a new lip color and had never before tried a stain, so I was pretty excited to check it out. I chose the “Sleek” color for the winter season, and I also think it will be great once fall arrives.

Below are my before photos with a naked lip.

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And on the contrary…POP! The Sleek Stiff Upper Lip Stain in action. It’s bold and beautiful. I just love the richness of the color. Since I had never used a stain before, the texture was a little more fluid than I was expecting. I suppose I was thinking it would be like a gloss? But that was definitely not the case. I realized you have to let it dry and that two coats works the best! I was SUPER impressed with the fact that it stayed on ALL day without reapplication, and my kid’s faces were not covered in lipstick by the end of the day. I would definitely recommend trying it out, and it also comes in a variety of colors if dark and bold is not your jam.

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This was the first Younique beauty product I have tried, but it looks like I will need to check out some more! Many thanks to Suzie for this great pick!

Hope you are all having a great week so far. We are getting back into our groove from the Easter holiday. We traveled to Maryland so this week has been all about grocery shopping, laundry, paying bills, and cleaning the house. Ohhhh adulting. Trying out lip stains is much more fun! 😉

But in all seriousness, I cannot even believe March is almost over and we will be into April in no time. This year is flying by and the boys are growing way too fast. Luca is already 7 months old, and Nico over 2.5 already. Where does the time go? I am finishing up P90X3 this week, and feeling stronger than ever. I have been absolutely loving it, but I DO feel as if I have let my nutrition slip just a bit in the past couple months. SO I am taking measures to the EXTREME with 21 Day Fix Extreme next month to get back on track…eeeep! I’m a little nervous, but I am up for the challenge.

Also looking forward to warmer days and more long walks and days on the playground with my boys. Bring on the spring!

XO,

Gina

Sunrise on Branch Lake

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It’s 4:13am and I am awoken in the middle of the night due to pregnancy and my inability to control my bladder from the urgency to relieve itself these days.  So, I hop out of bed to make my way downstairs to the restroom in the lake house, when I look out the bedroom window.  Holy sky.  This is amazing.  We had thought about waking up early to watch the sunrise, and had set our alarms for 4:55am since the sun was supposed to come up at 5:00am, but we weren’t really sure if we would be able to force ourselves out of bed at that hour.  After waking up and taking care of business, I quickly grabbed my camera and took a few shots across the lake and into the colorful sky.  It was eerily quiet, peaceful and serene.  Just me and the lake and the brightly colored sky.  I wrestled with the idea of whether or not to wake the rest of the gang this early, and ultimately decided that they needed to see what I was seeing at that moment.  It would just be too selfish to exclude them from this view, and by 4:55am, they may have missed all of this.  So I woke up Zack and our friends, Erin and Rai.  They weren’t too pleased at first, grumbling and groaning, but when I showed them a photo I had taken of the sky, they knew they too needed to jump up before they missed this magical moment.  Zack and Erin got so excited in fact, that they broke out the kayaks and enjoyed the sunrise from atop the water.  Rai and I stayed behind taking in the moment from the lake house dock and capturing photos.  I know photos can’t really do justice, but my memories and these photos are all I’ve got.  Hope you enjoy.

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If you were still unsure about whether or not you should visit Maine, then these photos probably did the trick.  We were lucky enough to wake up to this view every morning, even though it might have been a bit earlier than we were used to!

Hope everyone is having a good Thursday.  I am looking forward to a little girl’s night.  My friend Jess is moving to New Jersey at the end of the month, so this will be the last one she hosts in her NYC apartment.  I then have to go home to pack for our trip to Maryland this weekend for both my friend Teri’s bridal shower and my baby shower for the Little Monkey.  We are trying to get the guest bedroom cleared out, and after this weekend it’s go time on that nursery!

XOXO,

Gina

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5 Beauty Must Haves

5 Beauty Must Haves
1.  MAC Paint Pot in Painterly – This is a cream eyeshadow, but I use it an an eyeshadow primer.  Before using this, my eyeshadow would wear off before the end of the day.  Now, I have literally fallen asleep, and my eyeshadow has still been wearin’ strong!  My makeup routine is no longer complete without this product!  And the little pot actually lasts quite awhile.
2.  Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula – I have been slathering this on daily to avoid stretch marks from my Little Monkey.  So far, so good!
3.  Lancome Hypnose Drama Mascara – I was an avid Lancome Difinicils user for years.  I recently started using Hypnose Drama instead, and I LOVE the difference in my eyelashes!  While it still makes them longer, it also makes them fuller and more voluminous.  I think I will be sticking to this mascara for awhile.
4.  Olay Age Defying Moisturizer – I use this all year long, and have been very happy with it.  As for the anti-wrinkle, you can never start too young in my opinion!  It also has an SPF of 15, which is great for the summertime.
5.  Loreal Extra Intense Eyeliner – I always have trouble with eyeliner wearing off on the underside of my lower eyelid and smudging underneath  (I know, I know, you’re aren’t supposed to put it there, but I have to).  So far, this eyeliner does it the least, so I’ve been using it a lot lately.
What are your beauty must haves?
Tonight, I’m headed to the AICP Show at the MOMA, and very much looking forward to it!  Have a great Thursday everyone.
XO,
Gina

The Magic Hour

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I know the Arizona photos seem to be never ending, but there is just too much to share!  I promise you this is the last week of Arizona posts!  These shots were taken during the “Magic Hour,” a photographer’s  most favorite hour to shoot.  This happens about an hour before sunset, and it’s when the light is most lovely for photographs.  We happened to be on the road at this time, and having no set schedule to be any particular place, we frequently made stops to shoot this beautiful scenery.

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First and foremost, I want to thank all of our military for serving and protecting our country.  For those who have been lost, we are ever grateful for your strength and bravery.  I hope you all had a great Memorial Day Weekend holiday.

We spent part of ours in Philly visiting friends, and part of it hanging out with friends on the Upper East side and Central Park.  It was a wonderful weekend, and a great kick off to the summertime!

Have a great short week!

XO,

Gina