TRAVEL | My Skin Care Bag, Winter Edition

The cold and windy season is in full swing, although ironically and tragically, so much of Southern California is on fire right now.  Although my thoughts are with all the first responders including my firefighter brother, I am escaping the smoke and traipsing off to Canada to go snowboarding!  Since the high is about 30 degrees Fahrenheit there, the freezing temperatures and chilly conditions make for a great look at my winter skin care routine.  Check out my travel bag after the jump!


REVIEW | My Chemical Peel 101 Progress Report with Photos and Post-Care Tips

Neutrogena post-peel care kit from my MD's office
If you follow me on Instagram, you'll have seen that I am currently healing from my chemical peel.  Many of you requested information regarding what kind of peel I got, so I tried to answer all your questions and share with you some valuable tips I've learned over the years.  Check out the progress photos after the jump!


TOP 5 | Best of Concealers for Covering Acne and Scarring + SWATCHES

Since my skin is currently healing from my chemical peel, which I shared on my Instagram story, here is a preview of my upcoming Acne Covering tutorial with the five concealers I will be showing in action.  Again, I apologize for the delays with that video because I've had every audio and lighting issue imaginable which is why I've re-filmed it four times already!  Instead of dwelling on that, however, I wanted to share why these are the best concealers for my normal/dry acne-prone skin.


Shu Uemura x Super Mario Bros Holiday 2017 Collection Photos, Swatches, Giveaway

The Shu Uemura x Super Mario Bros Holiday 2017 has been widely anticipated, and sadly, the lipsticks sold out right away! Lots of you had messaged me and asked me for reviews, but I created a tutorial instead because I've reviewed a lot of these products like the Ultime8 cleansing oil before. I did, however, want to give away one of the lipsticks since I know many of you missed out!


Burberry Cat Eyes Liner and Full Brows Review, Tutorial

Burberry released two new dual-ended products for brows and eyes this Fall, and they have quickly become essentials in my everyday routine.  As many of you have seen over the years, the winged liner with strong brow combo has become my signature look, which is why Burberry's Cat Eyeliner and Full Brow Brow Tool feel as though they were made for me!  I chose a soft matte red lip pairing for a glamorously dramatic edge, which I feel is more appropriate in the fall season.

The liquid pigment of both eyeliner and brow pen are easy to control and the powder ends create versatility and dimension.  Although the black liner comes with a dark brown eyeshadow with gold pigment, I find that more wearable and creates structure without making the eyes look smaller.  The eyeliner formula is exceptional, as dark and rich as the Tom Ford and longer lasting than the Hourglass.  It does not pill and lasts all day.  The brow pen is reminiscent of SUQQU's but is easier to control and is offered in the Ebony color which is the perfect blend of grey and brown. The brow powder is also phenomenal, and no brushes are required for application!

As for my base, I am wearing the following:
Fresh Glow Luminous Bases


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REVIEW | Best of Benefit Holiday 2017 Gift Sets, Photos

Ulta Beauty just received all the adorable new Benefit Holiday sets so I wanted to share some preview of my favorites! I'm always impressed by Benefit packaging, but this season's offerings are true showstoppers.


TUTORIAL | The Burberry Essentials Collection 2017 and Live Swatches

The Burberry Essentials Collection revolves around the famed Fresh Glow range of products, some of which I have discussed before, but I wanted to show you some new techniques I have been playing with.  I love Burberry's effortless signature glowing skin because looks natural and polished, never over done and easy for anyone at any age to achieve!

new ambassador iris law
I have been layering highlighters and working on strategically placed contours, mostly because I am trying to cut back on how much setting and bronzing powders I wear.  Since my hormonal acne has flared up yet again and this time, severely traumatized my skin, I've missed going natural.  I want to embrace my skin's real texture and composition so I'm hoping this tutorial will inspire some of you to step away from full coverage mattes and excess powder, too!

The new additions to the Burberry Beauty range to complete this Essentials Collection are the Lip Color Contour Pens and the Fresh Glow Highlighter in Rose Gold.  The lipsticks are so innovative and the formula so ideal for my dry sensitive lips; you absolutely need to try them! The texture feels whipped but the pigmentation is opaque and smooth. It also functions as a primer so I did not experience any feathering! I hope they expand the color range with more beige-toned and warmer rose nudes soon. 

›  Lip Color Contour Pens http://bit.ly/2z0Oifo
›  Fresh Glow Highlighter in Rose Gold http://bit.ly/2wzFTO9
›  Fresh Glow Luminous Bases http://bit.ly/2z0MNhg
›  Face Contour Pens http://bit.ly/2wAokxE
›  Fresh Glow Pens http://bit.ly/2wAokxE

Foundation in Beige http://bit.ly/2z1NaIh
Brow Pen in Sepia http://bit.ly/2wzZM7O
Nude Powder in Ochre http://bit.ly/2wAYhGn

alo http://bit.ly/2wA51Va

created in partnership with burberry x sephora


Shu Uemura x Ambush Collaboration Review, Photos, Swatches #Ad

Shu Uemura recently collaborated with Japanese jewelry brand Ambush, and it's one of the most fresh and funky yet wearable collections they've unveiled in ages. My favorites are the mixed silver and gold lipstick bullets with the modern stamped logo look. Each of the shades is supremely luxe.

The mattes have a plush whipped texture that smooths lip lines and the shine formula is shimmery but feels like liquid gold. Shu Uemura might have tweaked the formula a bit on these, because they seem a little bit better than usual. More details and photos after the jump!


SpaceNK Summer Flash Event Sale Details + My Top 10 Recommendations

From Friday, August 4th  Monday, August 7th, SpaceNK stores and spacenk.com (US only) will be running a special "spend-get" promotional offer. You only have a couple days to take advantage so get your orders in as soon as possible! Enjoy $20 off when you spend $100 or get $40 off when you spend $200. This gives you a chance to explore new brands, stock up, or purchase gifts at a savings!

I'm sharing my top ten recommendations here since not everyone is familiar with SpaceNK's offerings and because shopping for beauty products in a timed manner can get overwhelming. Check out my thoughts after the jump!


REVIEW | Tom Ford Summer 2017 Soleil Collection + Essentials

Tom Ford has released a few Soleil collections over the years and his highly anticipated 2017 line-up launched a couple months ago at Nordstrom. I've slowly been testing and working my way through the new formulas, and there were more than a few surprises than I'm accustomed to. I'm finally ready to share my favorites so let's begin with my favorites!


REVIEW | REN Glycol Lactic Radiance Renewal Mask and Radiance Perfection Serum

In case you haven't noticed I've been experimenting more with natural and clean skin care this year, but REN is one of the only brands that I have found effective.  Since I struggle with acne scarring and discolorations, I decided to try the Radiance Perfection Serum and Glycol Lactic Radiance Renewal Mask. Each is $55 and the REN website offers free shipping on orders over $60 with two free samples with every order.  This duo makes me happy because I know I'm doing my skin a favor by giving it a healthy break, reviews after the jump!


HAUL | QVC Beauty with Benefits

I have been compensated by QVC for my participation. All opinions expressed are my own. #BraveisBeautiful

As some of you may have already seen on my Instagram, I shared a few goodies that some of my favorite brands have donated to QVC for their awesome Beauty with Benefits Campaign! Specifically, I've used T3 blow dryers for years but the Featherweight Luxe 2i is one of the very best and is currently the model I use daily.

This campaign is special, though, because 80% of the purchase price of the beauty products* donated by prestige brands like T3, WEN, Dior, IOPE, Mally, and NuFACE will go directly to support Cancer and Careers. It takes a lot of bravery to put on a face of makeup, style the hair, and face the day while battling cancer so this campaign celebrates those strong women and helps them get the workplace support and resources they need!

There's also a 6-piece Gift with Purchase** available so let's support this feel-good campaign and raise awareness for Cancer and Careers. Make a difference for someone in need while treating yourself, too! Every little bit counts.
**excludes shipping, handling and tax

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INSPIRATION | Mother's Day 2017 Gift Guide

Mother's Day is right around the corner so here are some ideas if you'd rather skip the flowers and treat your special lady or ladies to a special gift! Some retailers are offering expedited or overnight shipping still or swing by a store.

SK-II Facial Treatment Essence is a cult classic. I don't know a single mother who wouldn't be thrilled to be gifted with this gorgeous feminine sakura themed bottle. It is already sold out on Nordstrom so get one from Bloomingdale's while you still can! The Facial Treatment Essence is excellent for clarity and translucency. I like to use it as a quick fix two-minute mask before makeup application.

My mother personally loves the SK-II Brightening Derm Mask since it is one of the few that immediately brightens and calms the complexion while my grandmother prefers the Signature 3D Redefining Mask. I've raved enough about the Brightening masks over the years, but I wasn't wholly convinced about the Redefining Masks until recently. I've always enjoyed the comfortable milky texture of the serum and two-piece construction of the mask but using two per week actually does soften my skin and give it a healthier glow as advertised! I can now enthusiastically recommend both masks.

I introduced my mother to 111SKIN and she is absolutely in love with the Y Theorem Repair Light Serum lately, featured above.  I normally request her feedback when it comes to luxury skin care since she has tried so much of it over the years.  Her verdict: SK-II and 111SKIN are the only brands worth splurging on. I personally love the Eye Lift Gel, but if you're looking for the gift of the year, try the new Lunar28 Day Brightening and Anti-Aging System.

Of course it smashes any and all senses of a budget, but for skin care junkies who regularly get facials and peels and treatments, an intensive 4-week treat like this makes sense!  Lunar28 is an innovative range of products they would not have tried yet.  It is truly a gift for the woman in your life who has it all.

The Y Theorem Repair Light Serum is one of the brand's best sellers, and I can see why!  It is a fast absorbing gel that immediately replenishes the skin and layers well so I prefer to use this the week after getting any kind of facial or extractions.  The texture is supremely lightweight yet helps my skin hold moisture better.  I don't have wrinkles besides a bit of crow's feet, but my mom says it plumps up the wrinkles and firms any saggy bits.  We also adore that it is paraben, paraffin, silicone and sulfate free.

The Tatcha Dewy Luminous Mist makes a perfect gift because the ombre lavender bottle is unique and stunning but the product quality is impressive — one of the few mists that I believe is worth the money. A mist isn't an essential part of my skin care regimen, but I absolutely love using them. Plus Tatcha packaging is so elegant and beautiful and thoughtful that using it feels like I'm doing something good for myself.

In case you missed the launch there is a limited black and gold One in A Million design available or you can create your own mini trio set directly on TATCHA's website with a Dewy Mist that's sized for travel! Or you could also try one of expertly curated "The Starter Ritual" kits which are offered based on skin type (dry, sensitive, normal to dry, and normal to oily). I love TATCHA skin care because it is gentle yet effective especially when my skin is irritated or stressed!

Atelier Cologne is my latest fragrance brand in case you missed my VIB Sephora Haul sale posts. I visited my friend Dayna in Portland a couple months ago, and I fell in love with her Pomélo Paradis and had to get one for myself.

This Perfume Wardrobe collection of clutch-sized spray bottles — not another roller ball set, thank goodness — makes a fresh and adventurous gift! I love how bright and uplifting most AC scents are, especially because it can be difficult to find fruity notes that do not smell overly artificial or excessively sweet. They are perfect for my active lifestyle, but I adore Clementine California and Bergamote Soleil in addition to the grapefruit scent.

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BEST OF | Shu Uemura Skin Care Review, Photos

Shu Uemura is best known for their lovely lipstick selection and cult classic eyebrow pencils, but you may not have tried their skin care. A year ago I was recommending the Depsea line to those who needed basic hydrating products, but it was discontinued and reformulated. I wanted to share my updated list of favorites because there's a sale which makes it the perfect time to stock up or purchase Mother's Day gifts! Use promo code RAEVIEWFF for 20% off $50+ orders and 25% off $125+ orders plus free shipping. Valid from May 7 to May 16 on shuuemura-usa.com and shuuemura.ca.


PSA | Sephora VIB Rouge Sale Info + Shopping Recommendations

One of Sephora's most anticipated sales of the year is fast approaching so it is time to prep those carts! VIB Rouge level members will get first access on the 18th and VIB can start shopping on April 19th and BIs on the 20th. Everyone can shop until the 24th. VIB and VIB Rouge members will receive 15% off. The code required for the discount is ROUGESPRING.

Here are all my recommendations split into categories, but please take most advantage by focusing on Christian Louboutin, Tom Ford, Christophe Robin, Tatcha, Burberry, Hourglass, Chanel (fragrance only) and other brands that are almost never discounted.


I go through skin care faster than most people, despite testing everything. Moroccanoil is known for their hair care but their body products are just divine! I dug the Souffle out of my storage recently and fell in love with this liquid gold so I'm ordering one in Rose. I am also loving the new packaging of Tatcha's Dewy Mist and moisturizers. Some of my current skin favorites are the Kate Somerville cleansers, SK-II brightening products, Caudalie's serums and Fresh masks. Do try First Aid Beauty and Ole Henriksen if you're looking for more affordable fare that actually works!


My latest obsession is MUFE's new brow liner, which I will feature soon but the only makeup in my basket is the Louboutin Pencil Eyeliner! Let's round out my top five recommendations with the Louboutin Matte Lipsticks, Burberry Eyeshadows, Tom Ford Soleil cheek products (tutorial coming soon), and Louboutin Liquid Liner. If you need nail polish, I recommend Dior Gel and Louboutin The Nudes. Please scroll through the products below because these are truly my favorite makeup items, things you absolutely need to try.


Nothing makes my hair look smell and feel quite as good as Christophe Robin's. I've dabbled with so many brands and as much as I love Oribe and Miriam Q (which I buy at SpaceNK), I always go back to CR. I cycle through his products based on what my scalp and locks need, but I suggest you try the Rose conditioner and Sea Salt scrub first! And yes, I still love my T3 blow dryers and curling irons, but the new Dyson and BioIonic tools for styling are pretty darn awesome.


Best news of all though, Jo Malone is now available at Sephora! I absolutely adore the body cream as well as the cologne in Nectarine Blossom & Honey, English Pear & and Freesia, Blackberry & Bay. The candles are lovely but I burn through the candles too quickly, hence I would only recommend hers for decor purposes. My favorite fragrances are featured in the carousel but in case you want to know my favorite brands, check out Chanel, AERIN, Atelier Cologne, and Tom Ford. Right now I am wearing bright fresh scents due to all my working out.


I wanted to include this last category to feature some awesome freshly launched goodies like the DryBar and Hourglass and a few trendy products that I haven't personally tested yet such as the Milk highlighter. Many of the trendy picks are highly rated online, piqued my interest, and are well-loved by my blogger buddies too. I never write off brands or products because they don't fit my luxury beauty niche, but I simply don't have enough time to try and test everything that's trending. I at least stay up to date as much as I can and keep you in the loop!

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