A few weeks ago, my skin just up and decided to stage a mutiny. My upper body broke out in a rash. From my hairline all the way down to my torso, I was covered in itchy, sandpaper-like bumps (I now suspect eczema was the culprit). My lips didn’t even escape unscathed; they were bumpy and inflated to almost twice their normal size. And on the worst day, my left eye was so swollen and droopy, I looked like a female Forest Whitaker.
As the days wore on, the bumps started to dry out and my skin became dessicated and extremely flaky. It was as if I was a snake, shedding an exoskeleton. The dryness of my face was unbearable. With every facial expression or movement of my mouth, it seemed like my skin would literally tear; it was so painful. Up until this point, I had only been using Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser – as it was all that my traumatized skin could handle. But it begged for more, so I dug through my skin care arsenal looking for a moisturizer substantial enough to quench my skin’s thirst, but gentle enough not to send it into another tizzy. I hit the jackpot when I came across a sample of Clinique Comfort On Call Allergy Tested Relief Cream that the brand sent me a few months ago to review.
I can’t say enough wonderful things about this cream. My skin is the true testament. After just a few days of using Comfort On Call Allergy Tested Relief Cream, I started to recognize the reflection in the mirror again. And now that the rash (and its remnants) are almost gone, I continue to apply the cream after cleansing in the AM and PM.
According to Clinique, I’ve got their “exclusive, patent-pending Enviro-Soothe™ Complex” to thank for soothing and saving my face. Clinique also promises that when “used over time, it strengthens skin’s lipid barrier to support natural healing.”
Comfort On Call Allergy Tested Relief Cream also works wonders on dry, cracked hands. I can’t think of a better winter skin care pick than this one; it earns Holy Grail status. If you suffer from reactive, sensitive or dry skin, you’d be a smart gal to add it to your shopping list.
This morning, I appeared on the NBC 10! Show, to share my absolute favorite holiday beauty gift picks…
Godiva Home Fragrance Collection: Godiva Chocolatier unveils a new way to indulge in the sensorial decadence of its chocolate – the Godiva Home Fragrance Collection. These scented candles of deep chocolate-colored wax infused with cocoa butter are the brand’s first foray into the home fragrance category in its over 80 year history. These ready-to-gift candles are available in both travel and full sizes and the sumptuous scents are sure to please each and every chocolate connoisseur. The collection includes the following fragrances: Milk Chocolate Truffle, Raspberry Ganache, White Chocolate Magnolia, Peppermint Bark, Black Almond Truffle. The candles retail for $22.50 (Regular Candle 7 oz) and $12.50 (Travel Candle 4.4 oz) and are available at Neiman Marcus and Bath & Body Works.
Clarisonic Mia Skin Cleansing System: From the creators of the Sonicare toothbrush comes the Clarisonic Mia Skin Cleaning System, featuring a handy to-go sized version of the original, groundbreaking skin care Clarisonic Brush. The sonic frequency moves Clarisonic’s soft, gentle brush back and forth at more than 300 times per second, thoroughly clearing pores and skin surface. The Clarisonic Mia removes makeup six times better than traditional methods, clears pores and reduces the appearance of pore size, cleanses so thoroughly that skincare products absorb better, creates noticeably healthier looking skin. The Clarisonic Mia Skin Cleansing System includes: Clarisonic Mia One Speed Brush, international charger for worldwide use, sensitive brush head, 1 oz Gentle Hydro Cleanser. The Clarisonic Mia costs $149 and is sold at Sephora and clarisonic.com.
Sephora Fragrance Samplers for Him and Her: These boxed ensembles are the perfect gift of fragrance when you’re not sure which one to choose. The sets include samples of Sephora’s top-selling fragrances to try, a gift voucher that can be redeemed at any Sephora store for a full-sized bottle of any one of the samples included, and a fragrance guide. The Collector’s Edition Samplers are $75 and the Deluxe Samplers are $50.
Zoya Holiday Minicure Gift Set: This kit contains essentials for the perfect manicure, in the perfect miniature gift set: Zoya Remove+ (polish remover), Armor Top Coat, Anchor Base Coat, and Hurry Up Speed Dry Drops. This incredible value set ($15) is a perfect stocking stuffer, office gift or a personal treat.
Felix Rey Cosmetics Cases: How many makeup bags are so gorgeous that you could carry them as an evening clutch and be the chicest gal in the room? Not many…and I would wager that most of them come courtesy of Felix Rey, a sophisticated and ultra-feminine luxury brand of accessories founded by Lily Rafii Band and Sulaika Zarrouk. The cosmetics cases run the gamut in terms of size, style, print and price ($24-120) – so you’re sure to find the perfect present for that makeup-loving gal on your gift list. Leighton Meester, Hayden Panetierre, Hilary Duff, Penelope Cruz and Fergie are all fans of Felix Rey.
Bath & Body Works Lounge Shea Socks: These super-soft, ultra-pampering socks contain enough moisturizing shea butter to last up to 25 washes. The Lounge Shea Socks are available in 20 different colors/prints.
Members of the studio audience received a pair of the Bath & Body Works Lounge Shea Socks and nail polish from Zoya’s Ultra Glitter winter collection. For faithful Spoiled Pretty readers, like you, I’m upping the beauty booty.
One lucky winner will receive: candles from the Godiva Home Fragrance Collection, Sephora Fragrance Samples for Him and Her, a Zoya Holiday Minicure Gift Set, Felix Rey Leopard Nylon Cosmetics Case (large), and Bath & Body Works shea socks!
To enter the giveaway, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Be sure to include your full name and mailing address. The subject line should read “NBC 10 Holiday Beauty Giveaway.” The contest ends at midnight (EST) on Monday, December 14th. One winner will be chosen at random from among the entrants. On Tuesday, December 15th, I’ll announce the winner’s name. Please, only one entry per person; duplicate entries will not increase your chances of winning. Contest is open to U.S. and Canadian residents.
You’ve heard of the 100 years war? Well, let me tell you about the 20 years war. What’s that, you ask? It’s just this pesky little battle I’ve be waging with acne. Pimples, blackheads and whiteheads are no strangers to my skin – and I have tried hundreds of products to keep the situation under control.
When it comes to skin care, I tend to shop in department and specialty stores because my complexion requires the crème de la crème of cleansers, creams, masques and moisturizers. So imagine my surprise to discover a drugstore brand that tamed my temperamental skin; plus the cost of the entire regimen is about the same that I would typically pay for one high-end skin care product.
Clean & Clear Advantage 3-in-1 Foaming Acne Wash goes beyond cleansing to treat acne as you wash, while working to prevent future breakouts. The innovative formula combines a breakthrough oil dissolving technology and acne-fighting ingredients to thoroughly cleanse skin and control breakouts. I love how easily it removes my makeup and the daily grime without stripping my skin.
Clean & Clear Advantage Mark Treatment is a lightweight gel that reduces size of pimples while diminishing the appearance of post-acne marks. The breakthrough formula allows acne medication to start working quickly, reducing blemishes, as well as addressing the after effects of blemishes on skin. If you have acne marks or other types of hyperpigmentation, I highly recommend this treatment.
Clean & Clear Advantage 3-in-1 Exfoliating Cleanser is a daily scrub that treats acne and helps prevent breakouts. Micro-beads in a creamy cleanser formula exfoliate and slough away pore-clogging dirt, oil and impurities while Benzoyl Peroxide treats acne, revealing a clearer complexion.
Clean & Clear Blackhead Eraser Cleansing Mask reduces blackheads and helps prevent new ones from forming. Specially formulated to treat blackhead prone skin, the mask is infused with acne fighting medication and ingredients that draw out dirt, oil and impurities that can clog pores and lead to blackheads.
Clean & Clear Morning Burst In-Shower Facial is a citrus-scented, invigorating deep cleansing treatment that works with the steam from your shower. Clay helps draws out dirt, oil, and impurities from skin, moisturizers keep skin from over-drying. I absolutely adore this product! Used 1-3 times each week (in place of your normal cleanser), it wakes me up and re-energizes my skin – leaving it looking and feeling refreshed. The first time I tried it, Mr. Spoiled Pretty kept complimenting on my skin. “It looks healthy and shiny,” he said. Usually, ‘shiny’ isn’t an adjective I would want attributed to my skin; but I understood that in man-speak, he meant that my complexion looked vibrant.
This week, I’m not content to just tell you about my fabulous new drugstore finds. I’m partnering with Clean & Clear and we’re giving away a set. And because we’re confident that these products will help keep your complexion in check, we’re throwing in the Polaroid 7MP Pink Digital Camera – so you can document the improvement in your skin!
To enter the giveaway, send an email to email@example.com. Be sure to include your full name and mailing address. The subject line should read “Clean & Clear Giveaway.” The contest ends at midnight (EST) on Wednesday, December 9th. One winner will be chosen at random from among the entrants. On Thursday, December 10th, I’ll announce the winner’s name. Please, only one entry per person; duplicate entries will not increase your chances of winning. Contest is open to U.S. and Canadian residents. Good luck!