Beauty Unbiased: February 2013

Une éducation: How Does Nuxe Nuxellence Jeunesse Youth and Radiance Revealing Fluid Translate?

French Class 

Show me a beauty/fashion obsessed woman who is not inexplicably drawn to all things French, and I’ll show you a liar. Within months of launching my blog, I enrolled in not one but two French language courses. Now, the two French classes being taken at the same time was the unintentional result of a little Groupon-ing incident, but for the sake of this article, let’s pretend I was really that dedicated to beauty that I wanted, no needed, to parlez-vous français. My French recently came in handy recently when I was given a sample of a popular skincare product in France that is now available in the US, Nuxe Paris’ Nuxellence Jeunesse Youth and Radiance Revealing Fluid.  

In this case, it may be the English words that are harder to interpret than the French. ‘Jeunesse’ means ‘youth’ or ‘the time when you are young’, but what exactly is a youth and beauty revealing fluid? That question was best answered by letting my skin experience such a thing. As it turns out, a Youth and Radiance Revealing Fluid is as glorious as it sounds. But I’m jumping ahead here. 

Translating How To Use It

At first I was confused as to how to integrate the product into my skincare regimen. Where in the midst of wash, tone, serum, eye cream, spot treat blemishes, and finally moisturize would I be able to add in the youth fluid? Using the advice I’ve received in the past that products should be applied lightest to heaviest, the thicker than a serum and lighter than a moisturizer Nuxellence found its way onto my skin between (and sometimes in place of) serum and always before moisturizer. The fluid is absorbs quickly into the skin, but leaves a lingering light, delicious scent and really softens the skin immediately. 

But Does It Work?

The long term results, according to the research that Nuxe Paris conducted for years before releasing the product, include smoother, more radiant, plump skin, and fewer wrinkles and fine lines. How does it achieve all that? By repairing the mitochondrial DNA of the skin with the 10 patented ingredients infused into the Nuxellence Youth Fluid.  More of the nitty gritty as to the science behind the patended ingredients is available on Nuxe Paris' website. This is one intelligent French beauty product that is worth taking the time for first hand, experiential education. 

Please read disclosure statement as this review includes samples.

Backstage with Per-fekt Beauty: Alon Livne at New York Fashion Week

Training under Alexander McQueen and working for Roberto Cavelli, Alon Livne, Israel’s popular young designer and winner of the Israeli-version of Project Runway decided only two weeks ago to present at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week in New York, according to Women's Wear Daily. The all-black collection was inspired by J.G. Ballard’s post-apocalyptic science fiction novel “The Crystal World”, featuring dresses with sheer panels, beautifully (and strategically placed) jeweled accents, and meticulously tailored pants. 

Per-fekt Beauty: Per-fekt Beauty’s technologically advanced products seemed appropriately paired for Alon Livne's sci-fi inspired collection. The makeup followed the simple yet striking inspiration of the clothing, using Per-fekt's Smart Color technology the Per-fekt beauty team led by Suzana Hallili created a clean, natural face with a subtle smoky metallic eye. 

Makeup: Starting with Per-fekt’s multi-tasking Luminous Skin Perfection Gel, the product that can be used as an alternative foundation, primer, and powder provided color coverage and a flawless base for the skin. Cheeks were contoured with Bronzed Cheek Perfection Gel and lips were left nude with a touch of the Melrose Lip Perfection Gel for color. Drawing attention to the eyes, a Gun Metal eye shadow shade which was custom made by Richard Anderson, the founder of Per-fekt Beauty, was applied to the entire upper eyelid and lined on the bottom lid as well. 

Hair: Tresemme created  a wet looking, tightly wound acrylic bun by pulling hair very, very tautly into a ponytail, dousing it with Tresemme Tres Extra Firm Control Gel  to create a super wet and shiny style that one might imagine you'd need to wear in a post-apocolyptic world that likely does not have extra electricity for extravagances like blow dryers. 

Nails: Also fitting for survival in an unstable world that one can only imagine exists without access to cotton pads and nail polish remover, Zoya used only neutral nail colors in Minka or Dea, depending on the tones of each model's skin.

This Ones For the (Beauty) Lovers: My Valentine's Day Gift Ideas

Reflecting back on Valentine's Days of old, my most fond memories of celebrating the holiday come from elementary school. Decorating handmade cards, anticipating a huge candy binge, and becoming a handwriting analyst when reading way too deeply into the quickly scribbled message my crush left on the cards his mother probably made him sign always made it a special time. To me Valentine's Day is not about making some overwrought romantic comedy come true, but about showing yourself, a friend, or a loved one a little extra attention and affection because you've been meaning too but you've been so busy! Instead of being annoyed by the 'commercial'-ness of the holiday, let it be a reminder to make time for yourself or someone else.

For that best friend, a new-ish relationship, or (obviously) yourself, my first Valentine's Day pick is the We Heart Collection box from Birchbox. The box is valued at $76, but the limited edition collection is only $36 and includes a full size Color Club polish, Jane Tran Bobby Pins, Cargo Triple Action Mascara, Youngblood primer, and my two personal picks for things that must be in everyone's beauty bag- Oscar Blandi Texture and Volume Spray and a stila All Over Shimmer Liquid Luminizer Set. Note: As I'm writing this, the box just sold out! In case they decide to make more available, I'm keeping this on the list. If not, a three month subscription for Birchbox is only $30 or you can purchase items separately and make your own collection of things You Heart.

Often on social media I see people complaining to no end about the perfume samples that beauty subscription services throw in as one of their products. "I could get this for free at Sephora!" is the common outcry. Most of the time I'm anti-perfume samples that are gone in two spritzes, however, a few months ago Birchbox included an MCMC Fragrances sample. The Brooklyn based boutique fragrance brand and studio creates small batches of the fragrances which are bottled by hand. They have partnered with Brooklyn jeweler Odette NY to offer a Valentine's Day gift that not only smells amazing but comes with an arrow ring I've had my eye on for awhile. Available for purchase at MCMC's website for $99, with a retail value of $120.

Speaking of social media, if you've seen my Instagram feed lately, you may have noticed the distinctive Amarte Cosmetics pink bottles that have found their way into my daily skincare routine. A much more thorough review will up soon, but in the meantime, for the ultimate beauty lover in your life, the Amarte Skincare Heart & Seoul Collection provides the perfect balances of romantic packaging and luxurious, effective ingredients. Included in the set, which is available for $185 though the products retail for $300 separately: Eyeconic Eye Cream (3.8% pure retinol!), Aqua Veil Hydrator, Hydrolift Cream,  Daily Wonder Cleansing Foam, and two shades of Natural Finish BB Cream. The packaging is so pretty you won't even need to wrap it.

Happy Valentine's Day to all! Hope you make some new favorite memories this year.