CINDY


WHAT IS YOUR FIRST BEAUTY MEMORY?
My first memory is probably my mom and her lipstick. My mom always wears makeup (she even recently got purple eyeliner tattooed, which she loves), but most importantly would not get out of the car without a fresh coat of lipstick. I remember thinking how silly it was or annoyed at having to wait to get out of the car. I have always been more of a tomboy, never really wearing makeup until my late teens and even then very rarely. In fact, my husband didn’t see me in makeup until a year into our relationship! I remember my mom being excited when I wanted to go and buy jeans in high school – up to that point, it was all about the sweatpants. Luckily I have evolved since then! Though now I do enjoy the occasional (like once a month or so) getting dressed up and putting full makeup on, it is definitely not a daily thing for me.

HOW HAS YOUR BEAUTY ROUTINE CHANGED OVERTIME?
I never really had a beauty routine in the classic sense. I have been lucky with fairly good skin, so just using a facial cleanser (Clean & Clear Blackhead Eraser Scrub) was all I really did. I am now trying the Neutrogena Naturals Purifying Facial Cleanser instead (trying to get away from the plastic microbeads that are in many cleansers and are really bad for the environment, oceans in particular). As a marine mammalogist in Florida/Bahamas for over 10 years, my routine did involve a lot of sunscreen (SPF 50+ as I am very pale, Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry Touch). I will also use hand/body lotion on occasion when needed (particularly on my hands during cold weather). As I have gotten older I have become more interested in other types of beauty care, due to just curiosity and some necessity. I recently began having redness issues from Rosacea, and when the prescription lotion was way too much $$$$, I searched for other options. My doctor said that Retinol A was an ingredient to look for in over the counter items. So after a few tries, I found Neutrogena Rapid Tone Repair Moisturizer for day (with sunscreen) and night (both with accelerated Retinol A). They have worked great and I haven’t been this happy with my skin in years. Due to talking with my friends about this type of stuff, and recently getting a mini facial on vacation, I recently decided to try a face mask (first time!) – the Studio 35 Beauty Peel-Off Cucumber Mask. I think it, or something like it, might become a routine, my skin felt refreshed and I felt a little pampered, even for just 15 minutes, which is hard to come by as a busy mom.

WHERE DO YOU LOOK FOR MAKEUP AND SKINCARE RECOMMENDATIONS?
Well, I suppose that would mean I had to look?? I guess since I haven’t had a lot of interest in the past. I have asked friends sometimes, but other than that I just look around the store, read the labels and try to decipher what would be the best choice, try and repeat until something works. It can be pretty daunting with so many options available, I suppose the internet would be my next option, though what good sites to go to are a mystery to me!

WHAT PRODUCTS ARE YOU LOVING RIGHT NOW?
My main love is the Neutrogena Rapid Tone Repair Moisturizers that have cleared up my Rosacea issues. The Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry Touch sunscreen has been a favorite for years, especially for someone with oily skin. For my make-up (the occasional time I wear it!) I found Almay Intense i-Color products (shadow, liner and mascara). These are great because they tell you which colors to buy based on your eye color, and the shadow is in a little container that easily shows you which color goes where (lid, crease, highlight) – for people like me with very little experience with make-up it makes it easy to do a decent job.

WHEN DO YOU FEEL THE MOST CONFIDENT?
When I can find a little time to myself – taking a shower without rushing, blow-drying my hair, getting in a run, doing a 15-minute face mask, or those occasional dress-up times. It is amazing what a few minutes focusing on yourself can do to your confidence, and how hard it is to find those minutes in the busy days of working and being a mom!

Cindy is a married, thirtysomething marine mammalogist and mother of one. She loves nature, animals and anything geeky (see replica lightsaber on her mantle). Oh, and also anything that involves peanut butter.

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WINTER HANDS*

*a BEAUTY BIOGRAPHY appendix

Ah, winter. First snowfalls. Hot chocolate. Cozy nights. Cracked, dry hands.
The cold, dry air really wreaks havoc on my hands. Unfortunately, I’m not a fan of applying hand lotion throughout the day. I’m constantly washing my hands or dishes, so the process of applying hand lotion seems pretty futile. Plus, I haven’t found one that sinks in quickly and still feels like it’s providing some healing relief.

Enter my night-time hand lotion routine. (Is it a little much to have a hand lotion “routine?”) I needed to do something, and since I can’t be bothered with lotion during the day, I thought I’d give it a go at night.

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First Step: Aveda hand relief™ Night Renewal Serum. Not necessarily a major player in the hydration department; instead, a “restorative serum [that] visibly  improves the texture and tone of your hands while you sleep.” Sign me up! It has that Aveda pure-fume scent and feels really nice. 

Step Two: Weleda Skin Food is a very thick cream that provides intense hydration. Not just a hand cream, it can be used on any rough skin. It’s a bit oily and takes a while to sink in, so it’s perfect for me at night. It has a herbaceous scent, so it pairs well with the Aveda serum.

I’ve been doing this for about a month and I really think my skin has improved. If I remember, I’ll apply some cuticle oil before bed as well. As much as I enjoy this routine every night, I’m looking forward to warmer temperatures and the end of dry hands!

What are your favorite hand creams and lotions to combat winter skin?

SUE

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WHAT IS YOUR FIRST BEAUTY MEMORY?
When I was in Junior High I started getting a subscription to Seventeen Magazine. My favorite model was Susan Van Wyck. She had brown hair and eyes like me. I wore my hair in a flip (like hers) and hoped that the clothes that she was modeling were at the Brandeis department store downtown.

HOW HAS YOUR BEAUTY ROUTINE CHANGED OVERTIME?
I used to use Dial soap to wash my face (a carry over from my teen years), but I have switched to Basis or Olay Gentle Clean. I also look for products that have SPF built in.

WHERE DO YOU LOOK FOR MAKEUP AND SKINCARE RECOMMENDATIONS?
I received a nifty sample bag of products from Sephora from my daughter at Christmas. I have had fun using the samples and am going to start adding some to my daily routine.

WHAT PRODUCTS ARE YOU LOVING RIGHT NOW?
My hands and fingertips crack from housework and cold winter weather. I am using Amir Argan Oil Moisturizer and love the smell and the results. Also, I am currently using L’Bri Pure n’ Natural Body Wash. It doesn’t dry out my skin like other products I have tried.

WHEN DO YOU FEEL THE MOST CONFIDENT?
I feel most confident about myself after my Strong Bones class. I can think of a thousand reasons not to go but once I am there and finish the exercises I’m glad I took time for me! And if my hair looks good that’s a bonus, too.

Sue is a soon to be seventysomething Baby Boomer, mother of 3, and quilting grandmother to 8!

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KATI

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WHAT IS YOUR FIRST BEAUTY MEMORY?
Watching my mom sitting on the floor in the morning sun with her tiny mirror, her tweezers, and her eyelash curler, wondering what the heck she was doing. But I inherited her brows, so now I understand fully.

HOW HAS YOUR BEAUTY ROUTINE CHANGED OVERTIME?
I have to say that my routine has gotten shorter over time; I was blessed with pretty nice, clear skin, so I actually have more problems with break-outs if I fuss with it too much. I am very pale, so I make sure to use a tinted moisturizer with SPF every day. Otherwise, my make-up is pretty pedestrian, but I spend a lot of time on my hair to make it look like I didn’t spend any time on it. I’m a Kevin Murphy fan all the way.

WHERE DO YOU LOOK FOR MAKEUP AND SKINCARE RECOMMENDATIONS?
Friends mostly, my stylist, magazines while I’m sitting in waiting rooms

WHAT PRODUCTS ARE YOU LOVING RIGHT NOW?
I love the Clinique Chubby Stick! That’s in my purse no matter what. I always have lip gloss of some sort, too. I’m surprised by how much I like the Victoria’s Secret gloss.

WHEN DO YOU FEEL THE MOST CONFIDENT?
When I have a regular exercise routine in place I feel the most confident. And when I’m surrounded by the people who love me most, who make me feel great about myself whether I’m dressed up to go out or in my sweatpants on the couch. I never want to look my age, so as long as I keep hearing gasps when I say how old I am, I feel pretty confident.

Kati is a fortysomething mom in a blended family of 5 kids, librarian by day, couch enthusiast by night.

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FACE MASKS*

*a BEAUTY BIOGRAPHY appendix

If there is one thing I love, it’s a good face mask. Over the years I’ve tried quite a few, and through some trial and error, I’ve gotten into a solid routine. (And by solid routine I mean I pretty much do some sort of face mask EVERY DAY.) Here’s a little bit about what I do, and what I’ve learned._mg_56271For me, face masks are the epitome of a spa day at home, and it takes my skincare regimen to the next level. When I first started implementing them into my routine, I wasn’t considering what benefits I was seeking to achieve in my skin (read: face masks willy-nilly). I’ve become much more mindful when choosing masks to purchase, and I pay attention to the condition of my skin before applying. I have normal skin…maybe a little dry in the winter and a little oily in the summer. I have hyperpigmentation. I have dullness. I have congested pores around my chin. So, when I look for a mask I want it to address those issues. I’ve experimented with different ingredients and learned what my skin will tolerate.

In the mornings, I look for masks that “promise” radiance and will eradicate the dull factor. If it does what is says it’s going to do, then I want to see it all day long…not at night while I’m sleeping! I found a couple of quick mask treatments that I can fit in my morning routine a few times a week._mg_55991I really like ExfoliKate® Intensive Exfoliating Treatment. It’s pricey, but it takes way less than a dime-sized amount, and Sephora has a 0.5 oz size that’s a lot easier to swallow. It’s a combo physical exfoliator/chemical peel that uses lactic acid; as well as, papaya, pineapple, and pumpkin enzymes to reveal soft, glowing skin. It smells like Christmas and only takes 2 minutes.
I recently picked up Clinique’s Turnaround Revitalizing Instant Facial.  It takes 5 minutes, and my skin feels really smooth afterward. Given its price point, I’ll probably stick with it over the ExfoliKate®._mg_56071If I have a little more time, I’ll use the Kiehl’s Tumeric & Cranberry Seed Energizing Radiance Masque. I like the results, and it gets tight as it dries so it feels like my skin is getting a nice pore cleansing as well. BUT, it does have little cranberry seeds in it that seem to get stuck all over my washcloth when I take it off. Even though I like the mask, I’m not sure I’ll repurchase.
Fresh recently came out with their Vitamin Nectar Vibrancy-Boosting Mask.  It literally has chunks of citrus in it, smells super yummy, and is a perfect pick-me-up morning mask. The fruit acids smooth and soften my skin while combating dullness. I’ll probably stick with this one as my go-to morning mask. It’s delicious._mg_56111I jumped on the Glossier bandwagon a couple of weeks ago. This minimalist brand has been all over social media and YouTube, and, I’m not gonna lie, I wanted to be one of the cool kids. I was in need of a nighttime detox mask to address my congested chin. So far the Mega Greens Galaxy Pack is living up to the hype. Kaolin clay and fruit acids clear pores and refine texture…exactly what I need. I usually follow up with their Moisturizing Moon Mask. In addition to the hydrating boost from hyaluronic acid, it has licorice root and lemon to even out my complexion (goodbye hyperpigmentation!). I’ve only been using these for a couple of weeks, so I’ll report back on how well they worked long term._mg_56151About once a week, I’ll pull out First Aid Beauty’s Facial Radiance Intensive Peel. On application, it resembles a cooling clay mask due to the kaolin and active charcoal, but it’s also packed with acid exfoliators: salicylic and lactic. The directions indicate to leave it on for 1-5 minutes, and for good reason: Feel the burn!  Although a radiance mask, this one is better suited for me at night. I always follow it up with the Moisturizing Moon Mask.

So, that’s my current routine in a nutshell. I’m hoping to find a firming mask to add to this arsenal. What are some of your favorite masks?

 

 

COLLEEN

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WHAT IS YOUR FIRST BEAUTY MEMORY?
It would have to be the smell of my mother’s Opium by YSL perfume. She didn’t wear makeup, except for lipstick, but she always put on fragrance when going out somewhere special. I also remember (or can’t forget) the distinct smell of Noxzema, which both my mother and grandmother used.

HOW HAS YOUR BEAUTY ROUTINE CHANGED OVERTIME?
Just having a routine is fairly new to me. I never used to wash my face or put anything more than tinted moisturizer on. Now I use a gentle cleanser, like Cetaphil, in the morning followed by Olay Regenerist Micro-Sculping Cream. At night, I use Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water to wash off my makeup followed by moisturizer and RoC Retinol Correxion Deep Wrinkle Night Cream.

WHERE DO YOU LOOK FOR MAKEUP AND SKINCARE RECOMMENDATIONS?
My main source is probably magazines and YouTube beauty videos. I do enjoy browsing at Sephora and the drugstore, too. It’s disappointing to get recommendations and finding that the products just don’t work for me. For instance, I’ve heard so much hype about different kinds of under eye concealers and how well they work, yet none of them have worked for me.

WHAT PRODUCTS ARE YOU LOVING RIGHT NOW?
The Anastasia Brow Wiz has been one of my favorite products. It is so easy to apply and has such an impact; it brightens my whole face. My eyelash curler is also a must have! I can’t leave the house without curling my lashes. I’m also loving IT Cosmetics Your Skin But Better CC Cream. It gives my skin a natural, dewy finish and I love that it has SPF 50.

WHEN DO YOU FEEL THE MOST CONFIDENT?
My wardrobe consists mainly of jeans and pullover sweaters in dark colors. If I stray too much from that I just don’t feel like myself! I feel best with minimal makeup and clean, blow dried hair.

Colleen is holding on to her thirties for a few more months, a part-time library assistant, full-time mom to three boys, and a Netflix binge watcher. 

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MACKENZIE

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WHAT IS YOUR FIRST BEAUTY MEMORY?
My sister’s metallic silver Clinique eye shadow when she was in high school and I was too young to wear makeup. She was so cool.

HOW HAS YOUR BEAUTY ROUTINE CHANGED OVERTIME?
It has gotten much more complex. The more I try, the more I love. Repeat cycle.

WHERE DO YOU LOOK FOR MAKEUP AND SKINCARE RECOMMENDATIONS?
I try a lot of skincare samples at Sephora. You can try everything, so why not?

WHAT PRODUCTS ARE YOU LOVING RIGHT NOW?
The Fresh skincare line (soy cleanser, rose face mask, rose toner, rose eye serum, sugar lip polish, sugar lip balm) and Glamglow DREAMDUO™ Overnight Transforming Treatment (hello softest face ever).

WHEN DO YOU FEEL THE MOST CONFIDENT?
With my glam makeup on!

Mackenzie is an almost thirtysomething obsessed with all things beauty.

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