Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Stuff I Love!- Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Dark Circles Eraser

I consider myself fairly low maintenance when it comes to my appearance. Yes, I do seem to be getting to the hair salon quarterly rather than biannually as of late, but you'll still find my hair in a pony tail nearly every day. I color it at home, too.

As for make-up, I'm pretty much a foundation and lipstick kind of girl. You'll probably never see me without lipstick. But mascara, eye shadow, blush... it's just not my thing.

I've never been a fan of concealer. Typically we're told to purchase concealer a shade lighter than our skin tone. It applies like spackle and looks cakey and dry, or else it rubs off in the process of blending it.

All women have a feature they are trying to accentuate... and probably a dozen they are trying to hide. Since having Petite, I seem to be plagued by dark circles under my eyes. I figure it's hormonal. I've had very little success in covering them up, either with foundation or concealer. Once in a while, I sense the rut I am getting in with either my hair or make-up and head to Rite Aid for some kind of pick-me-up. Last week was such a time. As I perused the make-up aisles, I saw the display for Maybelline NY's Instant Age Rewind product line. The Dark Circle Eraser specifically caught my raccoon-like eyes. After minimal consideration, I figured I'd pay the $7.99 and give it a shot.

And I am so glad I did! I got the Neutralizer shade which I later read on the package was for more difficult dark eye circles. Score for me! After unwrapping the tube, you twist the tip until product reaches the round-tip sponge applicator. This in itself is novel, as most concealers look like a tube of Halloween white lipstick or have a skinny wand. The concealer goes on smooth as satin and blends beautifully, without wiping away. It doesn't look or feel cakey and doesn't make my undereyes so pale that I look like a clown! As soon as I applied it, I fell in love with the product. I also used it on a few- ahem- pimples on my chin. Aren't the 30s crazy for skin changes???? I applied foundation (a new one I had picked up the same day) over the concealer and was so, so pleased with the results. It looked so natural and my undereye circles were hidden.

But another true test is how well the concealer holds up. I'm happy to report that it stayed put til I washed it off at the end of the day. I looked just as bright-eyed as when I first applied it!

I don't know all the science behind this product, but typically these "age rewinding" cosmetics offer light-reflecting properties. Whatever the science, I have used it for a week and feel confident telling you that I love this stuff! Now you may never see me without lipstick or with dark circles!

*I'd love to know if there are any "beauty" products you swear by! What stuff do you love for your skin???? Tell me, tell me!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Stopping to Smell the Apples

Yesterday I took my girls to Rowe's House of Apples for u-pick. This is the place we would stop when I was younger, on our way back to Connecticut, for fresh Maine apples and old fashioned homemade doughnuts. It's a place full of nostalgia for me.

We were sad to see the big sign that said "U-Pick is All Picked Out" as we drove in the parking lot. I took the girls in the store and was immediately greeted with the familiar smell of cinnamon, apples, and fresh fried doughnuts. We got a dozen doughnuts and I perused the varieties of apples available. Macouns, Liberty's, Honeycrisp, McIntosh, Cortland, and several other varieties I wasn't as familiar with. While I eyeballed the bags of giant Honeycrisps pretty hard, Isabelle chose a bag of Cortlands. Cortlands it was.

It was a bright sunny day at home and my kitchen warmed right up and soon all I could smell was something like Rowe's House of Apples. I leaned over the bag of Cortlands and gave them a sniff. Oh, goodness, I sighed. I leaned in and drunk in the smell. It was that wonderful scent I had always equated with that place of nostalgia, but it was in my home, in a bag of delicious apples.

Each variety of apples have their own distinct smell. I suppose the popularized McIntosh is what I am most familiar with, due to all the candles and the fact that I grew up in a McIntosh apple loving home. Yesterday I kept finding myself leaning in to smell the Cortlands. This morning when I went downstairs to make the coffee, their scent greeted me first thing. No doubt my nose will be in them all day again. I may forbid everyone from eating them just so I can keep enjoying their delicious scent.

It's a very busy season around here, one that is full of unpacking and trying to find a home for everything. Many trips to Home Depot and Target have been made. Shuffling the mess from one room to another is commonplace. In the midst of all this settling in, the kids are needing us. And wanting things that seem so absolutely ridiculous right now. Things like learning how to play Monopoly or cribbage, painting fingernails, making cards out of all the craft supplies, and creating a canopy bed. Like we have time for that!

It sounds silly, but those apples taught me a little lesson today. They are a sweet, simple pleasure I am enjoying in this literal and figurative season I am in. And how important to enjoy it! Today my son asked me if I wanted to make a turtle with him out of these cool green foamy things he got for Christmas a few years ago. He had been asking me to do various things with him all afternoon and finally it occurred to me that this was a time to stop everything else... the unpacking, organizing, and cleaning... and savor a sweet moment with him.

It was better than the smell of the Cortlands. I just had to stop and drink it in.