product review, Promotional

Kiehl’s Apothecary

In-store photos by Igor Burlak

#KiehlsGetsPersonal

I’m so excited to be discussing skincare more often here on the blog. I recently had the privilege of collaborating with one of the most prestigious skincare lines in the country, Kiehl’s Apothecary, which was established in 1851. As a staple skincare company that has been able to stand the test of time, Kiehl’s knows how to modernize their old-school approach with the latest and most innovative skincare techniques and ingredients. Take their latest product launch, Kiehl’s Apothecary Preparations, for example. You can now schedule a consultation at your nearest Kiehl’s location to meet with a trained expert who will help determine your skincare needs, and create a customized serum just for you! This was a science class I could get into…Whether your goal is hydration, pore-minimization, or wrinkle-reduction, the experts at Kiehl’s can concoct a formula with your name on it—literally! They even print a special label, just for you. And don’t worry, you’ll also receive a little packet explaining what’s in your personalized product and how to use it properly.

I’ve been using my custom concentrate nightly for just about two weeks now, and I’m definitely loving the results. The serum has a velvety texture that leaves my skin nice and smooth, and the pore-minimizing effects have allowed me to reduce how often I have to use a cleansing mask, or harsh tools like my Clarisonic facial brush, which can dry out my skin. Everyone’s complexion and skincare needs are different, making it totally worth the trip to seek out skin solutions made especially for you. What may seem old-fashioned is actually both logical and luxurious.

#KiehlsGivesBack

During my visit at Kiehl’s on Newbury, I also learned about their creative and charitable collaborations. Each year, Kiehl’s collaborates with artists to put together a Limited Edition Holiday Collection that will benefit those in need. This year, Kiehl’s has teamed up with artist-duo Patrick McNeil and Patrick Miller of FAILE to support Feeding America. 100% of Kiehl’s net profits from this collection benefits Feeding America, providing 1.1 million meals to food insecure people in this country. This cause means a lot to me, as I personally feel that a lot of Americans use poverty and hunger in other countries as a distraction from our own problems, while there are so many people here right in the United States who aren’t sure when or how they’ll acquire their next meal. Art has always been a powerful way to inspire philanthropy and change, and I love when the fashion and beauty lead by example on this front. The hypnotic gold-and-black artwork FAILE have conceptualized for this collection puts a fresh spin on Kiehl’s iconic packaging, and while the gold definitely embraces the holiday spirit, these products will still look awesome once the holidays have come and gone.

  1. Now let’s talk about my top three favorite Kiehl’s products *except* for my customized serum, since that’s just for me:
    1. Breakout Control Targeted Acne Spot Treatment: I tend to struggle with isolated blemishes, so I’m always looking for effective yet gentle spot treatments to erase little zits here and there. This lightweight, sulfer-infused treatment zaps zits quickly, without leaving my skin dry or red.
  2. Creme De Crops Soy Milk & Honey Whipped Body Butter: This Kiehl’s classic is decadent, and always looks lovely on one’s vanity, bathroom shelves, etc.
  3. Damage Repairing & Rehydrating Leave-In Treatment: The third and final product on this list actually strays from the skincare category. After a brief but serious stint of dye jobs, my strands have felt a little dry and need some TLC. I’ve seen great results within the past couple of weeks, and would definitely recommend this product to anyone whose hair suffers during dry winter weather.
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Beauty, product review, Promotional

Back to Basics Skincare


Everyone’s skincare routine needs a boost once winter weather sets in. This summer, I fell in love with a new, all-natural line called Back to Basics Skincare. Using some of the world’s most organic, active ingredients, Back to Basics offers a unisex trio of oils that target different skincare needs, and are designed to fit into anyone’s unique routine.

Founder Manon Von Csiky-Sessoms set out to craft these natural formulas after struggling with her own skin. Once finding that pure vitamin E relieved her hyperpigmentation more effectively than any of the high-end products she’d tried, Manon wondered if simple, organic ingredients might be the answer to most skincare woes. In the comfort of her own kitchen, Manon got to work and proved herself right. Whereas a lot of products mask issues with chemicals, Back to Basics Skincare seeks to help skin from the inside out.

The first oil Manon created is my favorite, and a total must-have this winter: the Avocado Repairing Oil is a rich yet non-greasy remedy for damaged or super dry skin. Made with eczema in mind, the soothing Repairing Oil works wonders on dry patches and skin that’s raw from sun exposure, cold temperatures, or those moments when you’ve gone a little overboard attacking your blemishes. I like to put a few drops onto an exfoliating cotton pad and use the oil to gently buff away dead, flaky skin. Using this oil to heal damaged skin can also help prevent pesky scars and dark marks. The best part is that a little bit goes a long way, and it won’t clog your pores.

The Rose Hip Radiance Oil helps brighten your complexion and even skin tone. I had a few faint but stubborn scars from a nasty brush with dermatitis last winter, and I noticed significant improvement within the first week of adding the Radiance Oil to my everyday moisturizer. A few months later, those marks have completely disappeared.

For me, the best way to balance my skin is to use a water-based moisturizer and control over the amount of oil I apply to my face. Back to Basics’ third oil is the Macadamia Nut Hydrating Oil, which gives my moisturizer the perfect extra boost of hydration I need on cold, brisk days. When I’m wearing minimal or no makeup, I like to pat some of this oil onto my skin for a natural, dewy glow.

Any or all of these formulas would make great holiday gifts or stocking stuffers for everyone on your list—they can even be used as moisturizing beard oils! Plus, not only are they affordable, but Back to Basics Skincare products also come in sleek, minimal packaging that will look elegant and luxurious on anyone’s vanity or bathroom counter. To sweeten the deal even more, Fashion Saucers can get a special discount by using the code ‘STAYSAUCY‘ when placing an order with www.backtobasicsskin.com. Get back to basics, get shopping, and get the best skin of your life!

 

 

 

 

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Beauty, Boston, Fashion, Promotional

BeautyLynk: At-Home Beauty Services in Boston

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IMG_1158NBD x Naven Twins ‘Gemstone’ top, ASOS skirt, Jimmy Choo clutch, Eddie Borgo bracelet.

Everyone needs a little good news to brighten their Monday. Well, I’ve got the scoop, and it’s called BeautyLynk. BeautyLynk is a Boston-based startup company that offers a variety of luxurious at-home beauty services. Yes, you read that correctly: they come to you.

These days, there are lots of places you can go to have your hair and/or makeup done professionally, but these businesses can be crowded, they often run late, appointments can be hard to come by, their services can be limited, and sometimes just having to travel to their location cuts into your schedule and causes anxiety, all of which totally defeats the purpose of acquiring these services in the first place. Getting professionally “beautified” should be an enjoyable, relaxing experience, and BeautyLynk agrees. BeautyLynk is designed to remove the stress of getting ready entirely, for any occasion. Booking online or via the BeautyLynk mobile app is easy, their selection of services is practically endless, and you can choose individual or combined services of any kind. Say you’ve mastered your hair-styling skills, but can’t seem to pin down the art of contouring; BeautyLynk will send a professional makeup artist to your home at your convenience to make that makeup happen for you. Maybe you’ve tried countless times to give yourself chic milkmaid braids and a clean, even cat-eye effect (I swear, my eyeliner can smell my fear), and you just can’t seem to live up to your Pinterest board—BeautyLynk to the rescue. Their hair services include blowouts, braids—even actual at-home haircuts—and so much more. You can schedule a BeautyLynk professional for a basic, customized makeup session, or even recruit a squad for your whole bridal party. You can also filter their services by price to stay on top of your budget.

I’ve always felt good about my hair and makeup skills, but I’m no professional, and sometimes getting it right swallows so much time, puts me down to the wire, and makes me sweat off whatever makeup and hairspray I’ve successfully (or not so successfully) applied. I’d never had my makeup done professionally, but I do have a history of getting frazzled when I’m in a rush, so when I saw a busy day on my calendar that would conclude with a very chic and exclusive blogger dinner party, I turned to BeautyLynk to do my makeup. Makeup artist Carly arrived promptly at my apartment with a smile on her face and a giant box of top-notch makeup. Carly studied makeup application formally, and also works at Sephora, so I knew she’d have a great deal of product-knowledge, as well as expert technique. We consulted briefly about the outfit I’d be wearing and what look I wanted to achieve, and I could tell that she and I were instantly on the same page. So, I sat back and relaxed while Carly worked her magic. Carly explained and had me approve each step of her process, adjusting every detail to my liking, and also gave me options in terms of which products she used. She gladly agreed to use my preferred eyebrow pencil and lip color from my own collection, and had enough goodies in her box to apply a lip liner that perfectly matched my favorite Urban Decay lipstick. (Seriously, this girl’s makeup box was like Mary Poppins’ purse. Except way better.) Given that I’d never let anyone else do my makeup in my life, I got a bit skittish when it came time for mascara, but Carly put me at ease with a sweet sense of humor and clever soothing tactics. The service was of course a pleasure because I got to hang loose, and because the results were absolutely fabulous, but also because Carly was so much fun, herself. I’ll admit, I had my reservations about letting a stranger come into my home to do my makeup, but Carly kept the situation completely comfortable, really individualized the service, and we had a lot of laughs along the way.

Overall, I’d give my BeautyLynk experience a 10/10: Carly gave me a flawless finish that didn’t stray too far from my usual beauty aesthetic, and having a professional do my makeup at home truly did relieve stress, and gave me an extra boost of confidence throughout my whole night.

Makeup by Carly Nugent
Photos by Annie Quinn

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Beauty, Boston, Fashion, Promotional

OMG! Nice to Meet You!

DSC_0315-15Crop top by The Hanger, skirt from LF Stores, Phillip Lim clutch, Aldo ‘Istrago’ sandals.

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BostonBloggers2015-TheDangerBooth-44(From left): Sydney, myself, Gabby, Koko, & Miranda.

DSC_0331-18Jenny Bird Palm Cili Collar in Silver.

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BostonBloggers2015-TheDangerBooth-96(From left), Stephanie, Neha, myself, Sydney & Lianna.

DSC_0399-30Eddie Borgo bracelet, Michael Kors watch. Rings (from left): Cartier band, Gamine Zofia Ring Set in Silver, Margaret Elizabeth Faceted Cocktail Ring in Navy, Gorjana Gisele Ring. 356 Lacquer Creme Polish in ‘Alimersai.’

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This past Monday I attended the annual Boston Bloggers Meet & Greet at Audubon with my kickass new crew of blogger friends. Between the drinks, the delicious snacks, and the infamous Danger Booth, everyone had a blast—and since the large majority of the group are female fashion bloggers, the event served as glorious evidence that the catty stigmas of fashion culture are so out. With that said, one still feels some pressure when dressing to impress a group of fellow fashionistas…

Unsurprisingly enough, I went to the event in my favorite silhouette: high-waisted bottoms and a cutaway crop top—and in my favorite color combination: plain old black and white. The skirt’s dramatic asymmetrical hem and the sweatery fabric of my summertime top bring new life to my go-to look, and I went with my bright blue Phillip Lim clutch and Jenny Bird collar necklace, courtesy of Rocksbox, to kick things up another notch. I chose a mint-turquoise shade of nail polish to offset the bag, and added a navy cocktail ring for good measure, also from Rocksbox. If you haven’t heard of Rocksbox, it’s basically like the Netflix of jewelry: with Rockbox, you can rent and try fabulous new jewelry by top trendsetting brands like Gorjana and House of Harlow, and you can purchase the pieces you love for discounted prices. All you have to do is fill out a quick but effective style survey, start keeping a wishlist, and expert stylists will send you three pieces per box in a prepaid envelope, so returns are no fuss. You can return and receive as many boxes as you want for just $19 a month, but you can also get your first month free by using the promo code FASHIONSAUCEXOXO.

As for the gorgeous polish, it’s by Somerville-based 365 Lacquer, a vegan and non-toxic polish company dedicated to making fun colors without harmful ingredients, and without testing on animals. I have to admit, I can be a bit calamitous (by which I mean careless), and have therefore stuck almost exclusively to gel manicures for the last two years, so I felt a bit wary of going back to regular polish. But 365 Lacquer promised a quick-drying, long-lasting product—and they weren’t lying. I’ll admit to a couple of chips within the first 48 hours, but they weren’t caused by faulty polish; so many consecutive gel manicures have left my nails in a slightly weakened state, but on my nails that have managed to stay strong, 365 Lacquer has stayed strong, as well. Plus, they just released a neon collection that’s sure to get you even more excited about summer.

Fashion photography by Miranda Mu | Group photos courtesy of The Danger Booth.

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Beauty

Favorites of 2013

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Just like every other holiday, New Year’s is a time to reflect on all for which we are grateful. Rather than tell you about the amazing people and experiences that made 2013 a great year, I’ll share the beauty products that helped me savor every saucy moment.

1. MAC Lipstick in “Heroine” -The ongoing ’90s revival and Lorde’s sudden rise to queen bee status have brought deep, vibrant shades of purple lipstick to the forefront of fashion, and MAC’s “Heroine” is the obvious best. Though it was originally launched as a limited edition color, MAC announced last week that they are adding “Heroine” to their permanent collection. I only recently discovered this lipstick fit for royals, but it’s going to play the starring role in my New Year’s Eve look tonight, and it will definitely be making appearances on the blog soon.

2. Decleor Aroma Night Neroli Essential Balm -This nighttime balm is like chapstick for your face—great for relieving winter dryness. Recommended by my esthetician at Bliss Spa.

3. Kat Von D Tattoo Liner -Precision for the perfect cat eye.

4. Benefit Instant Brow Pencil -Bushy brows have made a major comeback, and I happen to think that’s the fucking sauce. Benefit has everything you need to gets your brows into shape.

5. Giorgio Armani Acqua di Gioia Perfume -I wear this perfume every day and people frequently tell me I smell good. That is all.

6. Too Faced Natural Eye Eyeshadow Collection -Choosing individual eyeshadow colors that compliment each other can be difficult, so I love the fact that brands like Too Faced have done the work for me. This kit will give you the tools to make your eyes stand out without going over the top.

7. Clinique CC Cream -Full title: “Moisture Surge CC Cream Hydrating Colour Corrector Broad Spectrum SPF 30.” So basically, this lightweight CC cream does it all. It gives the coverage of foundation, hydrates like a moisturizer, and protects your skin from the sun.

8. NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil -Why all lipsticks aren’t this shape, I do not know. The NARS lip pencil is really more like a big crayon that makes it easy to stay inside the lines of your lips, and just like crayons, it comes in a variety of awesome colors with fun names. My personal favorites are “Never Say Never,” “Damned,” and “Dragon Girl.”

9. Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion Potion is the appropriate word, because this stuff is like magic. With this primer, you could paint the Sistine Chapel on your lids and it will last all day. I guarantee it/double dare you. 

10. My favorite mascara was tragically discontinued earlier this year (Clinique High Definition), and I’d hoped to discover a fabulous replacement to fill this slot (and the void in my heart) before the new year. Sadly, I’ve yet to find one that truly compares. If you use a mascara that you love, leave a comment and share your knowledge—A new year means trying new things!

Have a saucy New Year’s Eve, everyone!

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