Best of Beauty: A Few of My Favorite Things #1

I know that this is a bit of a deviation from the other posts, but like any girl I love my beauty products. I spend more money in the drugstore each month than I do on anything else. I know some women swear against anything sold in a drugstore, but hey we live in a post 2008 recession world and I have never been a label whore. There are some very high end products that I adore and will shell money out on without any hesitation. However there are many things that you can pick up in your local Rite Aid that are better than a lot of the overpriced, chicly packaged, promise in bottles. I know, because I have tried expensive mascaras, moisturizing creams, eye creams, you name it. And more often than not I was a little let down, and had achieved equal or greater results with a less expensive product. Not everything I use is cheap, but I feel that there are plenty of people who spend way more than I do. So for other product loving women on a budget, who still want to feel indulged and pampered with every product they use, I hope my picks can help you.  I guarantee that each one of my picks will fool you into thinking you bought from a spa!

This weeks picks

Creme of Nature Argan Oil Treatment– Ok ladies I know that when you go looking for this you will find that it is a product for “black” hair. I personally never understood the separation of these hair products from the rest in store, but to the point. Do not think that you can’t use it. I have known so many girls that were shocked that I use products from the “black hair section”. Let me tell you if you have dry or damaged hair that is the aisle you need to go down for your conditioners, and repair treatments, because they will work 100X better than the stuff they market toward white women. There is nothing saying that those products can only be used on your hair if your black, and come on people it is hair the same molecules and protein make up our hair despite race. Ok now that I made my little speech, about the product.  First off it smells heavenly. It has a very subtle vanilla scent, and is very sweet. The smell is not overpowering, though, and compliments the smell of your shampoo and conditioner rather than covering it. Secondly, it is so inexpensive. If you can’t find it in your local stores you can find it on line for $7. Third, a little goes a long way! This stuff last a good long while, and makes you feel that you got every pennies bit of worth out of it. Fourth, it will not leave your hair feeling greasy or weighed down. I have shoulder blade length, semi-thick hair, not what I would call very thick, but I have a formidable amount of hair on my head. I only have to use an amount that is about the size of a penny (maybe slightly smaller) in the middle of my hand. I rub the oi between my hand then I rub it onto my hanging hair. That is where the bulk of the oil is distributed because I have some dry split ends from my different color a week phase in high school Then I run my hands over the top of my head, then massage into my scalp and run my fingers through the length of my hari. I end with brushing it so that everything is equally distributed. I do this right after my shower once my hair is no longer dripping wet. When I began using this I saw and felt results in about 5 days. Nothing too extreme, but my hair was becoming noticeably softer. I use this product every day, and it is giving me beautiful, shiny, soft, silky hair. And if you have excess on your hand rub it into your hands and fore-arms like you would lotion, it softens and heals your skin too.

Goat Soap– Goat Soap- One of my favorite bath products in the world is Wild Heaven Farms Goat Soap. I get it from the guys at Wild Heaven Farms in Richmond, VA, If you are not in the Richmond area, or have access to a similar supplier, Wild Heaven does have a website that you can order from wildheavenfarm.com. This soap is made with saponified oils (olive, coconut, and palm), goat milk, and essential oil for scent. It is cruelty free and fair trade certified. It doesn’t get more simple or au natural than that! The goat milk contains high levels of  skin nourishing vitamins and has wonderful moisturizing properties. Using this soap regularly will give you baby soft, silky skin. I find that my skin seems to appreciate this soap even more in the summer. I use this in my showers after tanning or a day at the beach and I have no skin drying at all and my skin stays hydrated and glowing. It also helps in the winter, which is when I get the worst dry skin. I wash my face with it after my acne cleanser and it seems to help my trouble areas from getting dry and itchy (sides of the nose, chin). I also see less splitting in my fingers during the cold months. Just as important is how economical this soap is.  This soap when used with a lufa, produces a lot of foam using very little soap; this stuff lasts forever. It takes me and my husband generally about 2 months to use a single bar. I would go through 3 cheap bars of crap quality soap in the same amount of time. I have also used high quality costly soaps that lasted about one week. Compared to high quality soaps I have used this is a good deal cheaper ($4.50) and quite a large bar, at that. So before you shrink from the per bar price, just consider that this is a quality, all natural product that lasts. These facts make it very cost effective, and cheaper I feel than buying just any soap.  Just make sure that you have a nice dry soap holder or soap dish where water won’t drip on it, or moisture will get to it; otherwise it will turn mushy and soggy.   I love the great nourishment this soap gives my skin, but my favorite part are the scents. Because they are made with essential oils they smell quite strongly and for me turn body washing into an aromatherapy experience. The scents are simple, clean, potent, and very natural and earthy. If you decide to check out Wild Heaven here is a list of my favorite scents from them: Sexy Peach, Mountain Retreat, Sweet Sandalwood, Chai Tea, and Oatmeal & Honey. Don’t get me wrong all of their scents are magnificent, but these are the ones that I just can’t seem to not buy. Wild heaven sells many other amazing and natural products as well.

Burberry Body Eau de Parfum– Okay now this is a pricey one; generally about $112 for an 85ml bottle. This is the perfume that turned me on to high end perfume. I received this as a gift not long ago from my friend and former boss. She is a lady of very fine tastes, and I was a bit awestruck by this gift. I was a little worried that the scent wouldn’t be for me. High end perfumes always smelled overly alcoholic, musky, and potent. This is probably because as a kid this is the kind of perfume my mom liked, such as Poison. I have always liked subtler, sweeter, lighter scents verses the knock you off your feet kind that my mom and aunts all embraced, my skin chemistry never mixed well with their perfumes and would smell awful when I tried to wear them for the novelty of wearing expensive perfume. When I smelled this scent, though, I was delighted. It was strong, but not overpowering, and it had the light, slightly sweet, and slightly tangy smell that I love. I spritz on my wrist and on my neck and I smelled fabulous. This is one spendy item that I will not hesitate to buy myself once the gifted one runs out. So for anyone whose skin chemistry does best with light and sweet notes I highly recommend this one. Plus it lasts a very long time so 112 for a quality perfume that lasts over a year seems fair to me.

Biotherm Aqua Source Eye Perfection– This is another product gifted by the same friend. I have been using it for about 3 weeks now, and I really like it over other eye creams. It is not greasy or heavy, and best off all it doesn’t irritate my somewhat acne prone skin. It delivers on its promise for bright morning eyes. When I put it on after my evening shower before bed I wake up with no puffiness or darkness. Plus  the massage roller applicator feels quite nice.

For some reason my link button just really refuses to work right now, so here are the urls to the pages where you can find these products sorry about this:

Argan oil treatment- http://cremeofnature.com/nature/argan_oil/argan_oil/argan_oil_treatment.html

Goat Soap- wildheavenfarm.com

Burberry Body- http://us.burberry.com/store/experiences/burberry-body/#/index

Biotherm AquaSource- http://www.biotherm-usa.com/product/AQUASOURCE-Skin-Perfection-Eye,default,pd.html

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