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A few weeks back Aillea invited me to their press event for Josh Rosebrook, a skincare genus who crafts some of my fave finds for the face (more on that meeting later.) While I was there, I picked up a few things (of course!) that have really made a difference in my skin, one of which is this Jade Roller.

 

I’ve been on the hunt for one for a while now, combing through Amazon.com trying to find real reviews as well as real jade and I wasn’t convinced I’d found either so I skipped it. Getting to actually feel the weight of the stone and quality of the roller at Aillea was key for me, I could tell it was an actual stone (not plastic) and that it was well made, and $35. Sold!

While the many benefits of using the roller reads like a CVS receipt, (full list HERE) for me, it’s all about de-puffing. It encourages lymphatic drainage while tightening and firming and it does it instantly. After washing my face and layering on various serums and creams, I take a few minutes (1 maybe 2) and first roll the smaller side under my eyes from the inner corners to the outer, then move on to my cheeks rolling outward with medium pressure. My eyes don’t have that tired look and my face doesn’t look as puffy in a noticeable way each time I use it. It’s so cut and dry simple: Use it, not puffy, don’t use it, puffy. Get a supercharged result by placing it in the freezer first.

I don’t know if it’s the rolling action, the jade itself, or just plain witchcraft, but whatever makes this thing work I’m in.

Have you used a jade roller? Have some tips for de-puffing? Find me on Instagram @HookedOnBeauty

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I’m a total mask-aholic, I’ll admit it. At the height of my addiction I was masking 4 times a week. Admittedly, this was way too often and my skin is probably better now that I don’t have that kind of time for my enzyme-extraction-mask routine (which I really miss.) I still like a good skin treatment though but only get to it about every week or so. Clay masks are life when my skin is in turmoil, but when I want my skin to look more rested and healthy, it doesn’t get any better than a sheet mask. 

I scored an Orgaid Sheet Mask a few months back at Aillea after they raved about the results people were getting from this treatment made using 70% organic ingredients including aloe, witch hazel, Vitamin B3, vegetable glycerin, hyaluronic acid, and other skin-soothing hydrators and extracts. They’re also made (in the USA!) using a special material for the mask that encourages maximum absorption. Right away I could feel how hydrating it was by the way it clung to my skin, hanging on so well that I could walk around without it sliding off. It started out feeling thick, cool, and with that familiar slip of aloe. I finished up dishes and drank wine through a straw for 30 minutes while the thing transferred all of its moisture into my skin. When I removed it, it was practically dry and felt warm while my skin felt hydrated, plump, and cool to the touch. It was so nice to just peel it off and go to bed versus all of the scrubbing needed to remove a clay mask. I didn’t have to apply any skincare since I still felt hydrated and I woke up needing less foundation.

Though I only used it once, it definitely had that wow factor. It’s so easy to apply and remove and it feels like it’s fueling my skin with moisture. They also have Vitamin C and Greek Yogurt versions to brighten and nourish as well as a multi pack if you want to try all 3 for around $5 a pop. This is a perfect treatment pre-special occasion (photos, weddings, big nights out), or for an easy way to restore tired, thirsty skin without a trip to the spa. 

Let me know if you’ve tried Orgaid’s or other sheet masks @HookedOnBeauty for IG FB, and Twitter.

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A friend recently asked for my thoughts on a good coverage foundation that mimics her long-time fave, Laura Mercier Silk Creme. She wanted one with a cleaner ingredient profile that held up all day and gave the coverage that Silk Creme used to – they apparently changed their formula and there’s an uproar (see the comments on their own site HERE!) 

Anyway- I knew I had the answer with Bamboo Blur from 100% Pure, an aloe-based formula with fruit pigments and organic vitamin and plant extracts that gives a good amount of coverage and a matte finish. It reminds me of what I loved about Silk Creme when I wore it back in the day – great coverage that dulls shine without looking chalky or heavy. As with most fuller coverage foundations, I’ve found that Bamboo Blur is best applied to moisturized, primed skin and then blended by pressing it into the skin using a damp Beauty Blender and not a foundation brush which tends to drag the color around the skin instead. I also set it with a mist like THIS ONE which gives it the most natural look. (If your skin is flakey or really dry, their Healthy Foundation might be a better fit.) The bottle is a generous size with 70% more foundation than Silk Creme for a few bucks less.

I can wear either White Peach or Sand, it’s one of those formulas that sort of morphs into your skin tone so I don’t need it to be exact. Go darker for the summer though to give your skin some warmth. Deeper skin tones will have more luck with the color range of their Healthy Foundations which go darker than Bamboo Blur’s do.

Have you tried this or a great natural foundation I would love? Let me know! @HookedOnBeauty on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

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The Ordinary is an interesting name for this range of powerful serums and actives which offer results and prices that are anything but. Their simple formulations of Retinol, Vitamin C, Antioxidant Blends, Oils, and more range in price from $5 to $15ish. I bought these 4 from them recently and have been so impressed. Here’s a rundown of my thoughts on each. 

AHA 30% BHA 2% Peeling Solution

Do you happen to remember when I purchased some random glycolic peel from Amazon with tons of glowing reviews but most of them posted on the same days in broken English? That bottle sat collecting dust for almost a year until I tossed it out. What was I thinking buying an acid for my skin from a faceless, nameless company on Amazon? Lesson learned. This solution has become one of my all time faves that I use twice a week to fade scaring and to brighten dullness and it WORKS like crazy. You first apply the rich garnet colored serum to dry, clean skin and let it sit for up to 10 minutes. It does have a tingle to it so I know it’s working, but nothing too intense. After that I wash it away and marvel at how bright my skin looks. It’s like I just had a facial! My pores are smaller and there’s noticeable glow to my skin. I did it the other morning when I was getting ready and skipped foundation altogether which is a BIG deal for me. For $7.20 or $15 on Amazon (it probably evens out with shipping since it’s Prime on Amazon) it’s definitely worth a try.

Resveratrol 3% + Ferulic Acid 3% Serum

I love SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic serum but not the $165 price tag. This antioxidant serum has more Ferulic Acid and SkinCeuticals (3% versus their 0.5%) which is made from the seeds of fruit like apples and oranges. It serves as a skin protector form environmental pollutants, but it also helps the Resveritrol to work better as well. And Resveratrol, which is extracted mainly from grapes, offers huge antioxidant protection and is known to improve skin texture. It’s also known to have 17x the potency as compared to other antioxidants so it packs a huge punch in skin protection. And the best part is the cost. Just a cool $7.90 for the 1oz bottle. 

100% Organic Cold-Pressed Rose Hip Seed Oil


Rose Hip Seed Oil has been a longtime fave of mine. This one is 100% organic, and naturally rich in skin-loving fatty acids as well as vitamins A and C. It’s known to brighten the skin, fade scaring, help decrease fine lines, and calm acne. It’s good for all skin types and so easy to use. Mix it with your moisturizer if you’re feeling dry or use it solo if you just want sheer hydration. For $9.80 you won’t find a better moisture solution. 

Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%

The whole reason I starting looking into The Ordinary was because of raves about this mineral serum with Niacinamide (Vitamin B3) and Zinc which together balance sebum, reduce redness, calm, and keep pores clear. I use it on clean skin in the morning before adding anything else and I can tell my skin feels more balanced. For $5.90 you really just have to give it a try.

Worth checking out is their Serum Foundation $6.70 which comes in a ton of shades and SPF protection, and THIS Retinoid $9.60 that I just saw as a Kim Kardashian fave. 

Not that you’d go knocking down their door should something not work for you (especially when you spend $7), but they do have offer a full refund up to 1 YEAR after your purchase if you’re not happy. 

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Although I always do my due diligence before posting everything here on HOB, when I received Charolette’s Web Hemp Oil, I was sent into a research frenzy. I had heard about their oil though the story of a little girl named Charolette who was having 300 grand mal seizures a week and whose parents were advised to place her in a medically induced coma just to give her little body a break. She was just 5 at the time. Her parents experimented with creating their own hemp oil by extracting it from a very low level THC strain and giving it to their daughter who miraculously went a week without having a single seizure. This is before the oils were mainstream and word of their treatment in so many medical ailments were just starting to go mainstream.

That’s when Charolette’s mom Paige met the Stanley brothers, a legendary family here in Colorado who were growing a special strain of marajuana high in cannabidiol and low in THC. Basically, it had the medicinal qualities without the THC that creates a high. They were able to provide the family with the oil offering it in a safe dose and now years later, Charolette has just a few seizures a month, and the 6 Stanley brothers have perfected their oil retailing to those who want relief, even starting a non-profit to (among other things) provide free hemp oil to those who are suffering and can’t afford the oil themselves.

Dr. Sanjay Gupta made this story mainstream, see the video below for a clip from the CNN special, Weed

If you aren’t familiar with the vast conditions CBD oil treats, here are just a few: Relieves Pain and Inflammation (General or from MS, Arthritis, or Injuries)
Has Antipsychotic Effects
Reduces Anxiety
Panic Disorders
Acne
Relieves Nausea
Quitting Smoking
Insomnia
Cancer (more on that HERE)
Seizures
Promotes Cardiovascular Health
Fibromyalgia
Crohn’s Disease
MS

There is also some really exciting research on its effects with those suffering from early stage Alzheimer’s patients too.

Just Google ‘CBD Oil’ along with whatever condition you have and see what it can do. The way it heals the body is pretty amazing, THIS article explains more about how exactly it works. The topic isn’t such a taboo one any longer, especially when you remove the high from the equation.

CW is unique for a few reasons; first they’re organic so their plants are grown pesticide-free, second they invented this strain so they know it well. Third, they have a team of doctors on their Scientific Advisory Board making sure their products are safe, effective, and well researched. It’s also made in the USA which for me is important knowing how toxic the chemicals used in the hemp crops can be. 

My Experience with Charolette’s Web Hemp Oil

Over the past year I’ve struggled with anxiety and panic. We’ve been looking to move for over a year and the process just wore on me. With 3 kids 5 and under, 5 businesses between Mike and I, and lots of moving parts I just started having panic episodes where my heart would race, my adrenaline would rush, and feelings of complete dread would take over. It started happening more and more frequently as the move neared which is about the time CW sent over their oils for me to try. I was really scared to try it at first because I didn’t want to feel weird and it just seemed so foreign to take something that you associate with a high for a condition. First, the taste. It tastes like, well, pot. Like an oil version of a joint. Smells like it too, but really, what would you expect? You drop it into a smoothie or juice and the taste goes away. They sent over their Everyday Hemp Oil and their Everyday Advanced in a mint chocolate flavor which takes the edge off slightly, but don’t expect Junior Mints. The Advanced is 50 milligrams versus 10 from the Everyday. The effect takes a week or so to fully kick in, and when it did I just started to feel normal. The panic and anxiety just faded out like someone slowly turning down a radio until the music just stops. It was so subtle that I didn’t even notice at first until I stopped to appreciate how much clearer I felt. After the move I’ve fallen off (with everything!) but I’m starting to be faithful with it again. I’m also going to order CW Paws for our 14 year old dogs who are struggling a little bit lately in hopes that it will help with their joints, vitality, and overall health.

This was a surprising treatment that was really unexpected and not something I would’ve sought out otherwise. Do your research to see if Hemp Oil might benefit whatever condition you have, and find me on social (@HookedOnBeauty on FB and IG) to let me know your experiences with CBD.

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Everyone can use a little more light to their skin. Adding some glow brings life to otherwise dull complexions and elevates any look. It’s what we Makeup Artists do so that skin doesn’t look one dimensional which is often the difference between ho-hum and compliments from strangers. 

Now we’re not talking about shimmer here, that glittery look is ok on young skin but when you’re grown, you need some glow. And glow is a tough balance to strike. Too much and you look like you just emerged from a sauna, if the finish or formula is off, it could settle into fine lines and actually highlight less than perfect skin. Confidence in Your Glow from IT Cosmetics gives a huge boost to your complexion and the most beautiful glow with a highlighter, blush, and bronzer together in an ombre palette. They have a brush that works like magic to apply all 3 at once so it lays down the color just as you need it on your cheeks (shown below). It makes application a million times easier because of its width, what you pick up from the compact you sweep directly onto your cheeks. 

It’s like a watercolor sunset that’s both eye-catching and subtle at the same time. The tones are so natural, and they blend really well so it just looks like healthy, radiant skin and not just dry streaks of color which is the worst. 

As with any makeup from IT, you’ll find it ‘acts’ like skincare. CiYG contains vitamin C, a super ceramide complex, peptides and collagen which give it that silky texture and allow it to blend into the skin instead of sitting on top looking powdery and dry. 

IT was kind enough to send over some awesome products for me to try so I’ll be sharing my thoughts on those in the coming weeks along with hosting a giveaway! Find me on Facebook HERE as well as Instagram (HERE) for details of when the contest launches.

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It’s hard to get a good looking brow. Too much powder can make them look heavy and over-drawing with a pencil can be so severe. For just the right amount of color and hold, I’m LOVING Green Tea Fiber Brow Builder from 100% Pure.

I seriously can’t recommend this stuff enough. It’s a small tube that resembles mascara but with a shorter wand to get a perfect brush over brows. It comes in Medium Brown or Soft Brown (shown below) which works for lighter hair and somehow invisibly fills in sparse spots in my brows while also keeping them in place with a lightweight gel. They use green tea leaf fibers to create volume by plumping the tiny hairs and Vitamin E to strengthen brows in a clean formulation (their first ingredient is green tea extract.)

Update: It looks like it’s such a hit that it’s out of stock but you can click for them to email you a reminder when it’s back.

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I wish I wasn’t such an expert on this subject, but unfortunately I am. My skin has always been a rollercoaster ride since forever so it’s not an exaggeration to say that I’ve tried every concealer from every major cosmetics line out there. Because the thing is, covering breakouts is complicated because of so many different reasons. First, the color of the affected skin is darker than the rest of your skin, so getting it all to be the same shade is a challenge. Second, you need a consistency that isn’t oily so that it grabs onto the skin drying to an almost matte finish which gives it longevity so it doesn’t slide off. Apparently this is why there are endless choices for concealer. It’s a tough thing to get right.

IT Cosmetics recently figured out how to get it right. Their Bye Bye Breakout is one of the most comprehensive because of how well and how long it covers, along with how effectively it treats the actual breakout making skin look better. This dense, creamy liquid has some weight so it doesn’t thin out. I dab it over red marks and buff it out quickly with a brush (not a traditional taklon concealer brush which moves it around too much- they have a great one for this very thing), until all traces of red are completely gone. It’s easy to do because it’s a powerhouse of coverage with a weightless appearance and a matte finish that disappears into the skin completely covering any signs of redness. I then set it with their Bye Bye Breakout Powder.

The coverage is enough of a reason to love it, but it treats the blemish as well. It’s a concealer and drying lotion combined (you know those pink treatments that you wear overnight and apply with a Q-Tip?) which contains zinc oxide, kaolin clay, witch hazel, tea tree, sulfur and a gentle AHA/BHA complex. It’s a bunch of skin-healing and inflammation-reducing ingredients  that’s so incredible because it’s truly equal parts cancel and treat which is a rare find.

A few tips:

– Grab a shade either exactly the color of your skin or a step lighter, I use Light and it works great. Going darker will only make the spot look more pronounced and will look obvious against your lighter overall skin tone. 

– Set it. The general rule of makeup is to always set a cream with a powder to get longer wear. IT also sent over their Bye Bye Breakout Powder which is an incredible one. It’s a talc-free treatment that uses zinc oxide, kaolin clay, witch hazel, colloidal oatmeal, tea tree, sulfur and a gentle AHA/BHA complex to treat the blemish. It gives an airbrushed effect in what feels like a finely milled powder as good as any I’ve carried in my kit. It sets the concealer and make the skin look fresh and light, not heavy or cakey at all. You can of course set with any powder, but this one has additional treatment ingredients to heal acne too. 

– Don’t over-do it. I use a little foundation, then spot treat with Bye Bye Breakout, then I apply the powder. I let the concealer do most of the covering where I need it most to get the most natural look possible. There’s nothing worse than a face full of cakey makeup.

If you’re struggling to cover breakouts, this is one you’ll want to try!

Note: There are no affiliate links in the post. Product was sent to me from the company, but opinions (as always) are my own.

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