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Maha Matar

    BEAUTY

    Best Foundations For Anyone In Their 30’s !

    There are so many foundations to choose from. How do YOU choose the perfect foundation? You know, that foundation that doesn’t settle into the fine lines or dries out your skin a few hours after applying it! Well for me, in my twenties ,it was easy. I wore anything I wanted to, if I wanted to. In my thirties I struggled a bit as I started to see my skin dry out more.Well hello 40’s! I seem to be holding steady at just the drying out of the skin. Still no deep wrinkles or saggy skin…thank god for them good genes!

    When we beautiful woman hit our 3o’s our skin starts to lose collagen fast and all those years in the sun slowly start to creep up on us. That doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy time in the sun, it just means we need to be aware of the damage it may cause to our skin. I digress, this post is not about sun protection, it’s about finding the best foundation for anyone over 30! Even if your not in your 30’s this is still a very good read! 

    Here are my suggestions on what you need to look for in a really good foundation now that you’re no longer in your 20’s!

    1. Choose a lightweight formula. You can still achieve good coverage with a lighter formula such as Georgio Armani Luminous Silk or L’Oreal True Match foundation. Both have buildable coverage, and won’t dehydrate your skin or sit in those fine lines.
    2.  Foundations that contain Hyaluronic acid instantly plump and hydrate your skin! Charlotte Tilbury “Magic Foundation” and Lancome “Skin Feels Good” are both loaded with good ingredients to give your skin extra moisture and that lifted effect.
    3. Serum infused Foundations are so impressive. Their multitaskers as they are infused with  face oils and powerful antioxidants to help fight away free radicals all while covering up your minor imperfections . My favourite serum infused foundation is the Estée Lauder “Double Wear Makeup”.
    4. Seek out a foundation that contains more natural ,yet active, ingredients such as white tea and thyme extracts. Arbonne makes a beautiful  foundation that literally melts onto your skin

    Kat VOn D foundation photo

     

    My top foundations that I have on rotation ALL THE TIME are:

    1.Estée Lauder “Double Wear Makeup”

    2.Charlotte Tilbury “Magic Foundation”

    3.L’Oreal “True Match” 

    4.Arbonne  “Perfecting Liquid “

    5.Milani” 2-in-1 Conceal+Protect”

    6.Kat Von D ” True Portrait  Foundation”

     

    photo of model wearing Kat Von D foundation

    In this photo I’m wearing the Kat Von D ” True Portrait  Foundation” and I just love how it looks on my skin and is definitly a new favourite of mine. Super hydrating, lightweight formula with a semi-matte finish that lasted all day on my skin! It applied as a liquid but then dried to a powder finish. I added some blush, highlighter, lipstick, eyeliner and I was good to go for the day! My skin has a new BFF!

    Remember, age is just a number we see on our drivers licence and nothing more!

    Don’t believe me ?  Google JLo, Queen Rania and Ms. Janet Jackson! All woman that have aged with grace and style!

     

    XO, MAHA 

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    BEAUTY, BRAND TALK

    A RADIANT GLOW WITHOUT LASERS!

     SOCIAL MEDIA: “Who wants a blushing glow from within ?”

    THE ENTIRE WORLD: ” Us”

    Is anyone surprised by this?

    It seems as if our society has gone absolutely bonkers when it comes to achieving a healthy, natural glow and to be fair, why the heck not? No one wants dull, flakey, dried up skin, right?

    Now,  the question that we need to ask ourselves is how do you achieve the “touched by the light of an Angle” type glow without lasers , surgeries and a hefty price tag?

    Would you believe me if I said you can achieve a beautiful GLOW with quality skincare and a consistent routine in your own home?

    SkinChemists Advanced Brightening Collection lasers

    Here’s the deal, my good friends at Skin Chemists intuitively knew that my skin was in dire need of a pick me up, so they did what all good friends would do. They sent help. Help came in the form of their new and  innovative Advanced Brightening Collection.

    The Collection consists of:

    Advanced Brightening Micellar Water

    This cleanser gently removes make up, oil and dirt from the skin. It contains Vitamin B3 and Vitamin C which are potent ingredients used to brighten the skin. There are other potent ingredients present in the cleanser but the one that stands out the most for me is the Summer Damask Rose Water.

    Rose water is made by steeping rose petals in water. After the petals are steeped, the water is filled with the roses’ natural oils. In ancient Egypt, rose water was used only by wealthy and influential woman, like Ms. Cleopatra, to achieve gorgeous glowing skin. Rose water maintains the skins natural moisture, regulates pH balance, tones and softens the epidermis.

    Rose water can now be found as an active ingredient in loads of skin care products and is still used ALL over the Middle East and Egypt to hydrate the skin and maintain a youthful glow.

    Advanced Brightening Toner

    The Advanced Brightening Toner balances, hydrates and minimizes redness.

    The active ingredients are Vitamin B5 to hydrate the skin; Niacinamide to maintain skin elasticity; and Vitamin C to help increase the skin’s suppleness and protect from free radicals.

    Advanced Brightening Lotion

    The Brightening Lotion contains Vitamin C to help increase the skin’s suppleness and Niacinamide. According to Skin Chemists, another active ingredient is Poreaway. “Poreaway is a new innovative active ingrdient, which visibly reduces the appearance of pores, fights shininess, blemishes and clogged pores, creates a smooth, matte finish, manages imperfections effectively for purified skin all day long and keeps skin clear and refined”.

    So now we know that these products are formulated with potent , effective ingredients. Now what? Well, now you have to put the work in if you truly crave a healthy glow.

     I’m going to tell you exactly how to use these products.

    SkinChemists Advanced Brightening Collection lasersStep 1:

    Soak a cotton pad with the Advanced Brightening Micellar Water and remove all makeup and dirt.

    Step 2:

    Drop 1-2 dollops of the Advanced Brightening Toner onto a clean cotton pad. Gently smooth all over face. Let the product sink into your skin. 

    Step 3:

    Pump 1-2 pea sized amount of Advanced Brightening Lotion onto your fingers or cotton pad and smooth it all over your face.

    Step 4: 

    In the morning, use a serum that contains a mix of anti-aging ingredients and a moisturizer with SPF. At night, use products that contain a blend of AHA/BHA to lift away dead skin cells and a thick moisturizer to lock in the moisture.

    Step 5:

    Repeat Steps 1-4 every morning and night.

    I know at times we all get lazy and unfortunately it’s our skincare regime that suffers ,however, I strongly encourage you to stick to this routine if you want radiant skin. When the photos above were taken, I had already been using the full collection for 3 weeks. I definitely was feeling myself  and I felt confident in my skin 🙂 Clearly I’m wearing makeup but only a very little wash of tinted moisturizer and blush. Oh yeah, mascara…but that doesn’t count ! 

    I am always 100% transparent with you all so I won’t tell you that these specific products will remove your wrinkles or fix any deep acne scars. The Advanced Brightening Collection was created to help you achieve radiant, hydrated, clear, subtle, glowing skin. It really is that simple!

    I’m really happy with the Advanced Brightening Collection. With consistent use my skin feels hydrated, radiant and most of all I feel confident in my own skin.

    XO, MAHA

     

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    BEAUTY, BRAND TALK

    My real experience with the Revlon One-Step Hair Dryer

    Here’s something you probably don’t know about me. I have zero coordination!  Wasn’t great at sports or dance or anything that required stability or use of any muscle in the arms . That sounds very MD.com but here’s where I’m going with this…I’ve never straightened my hair, let me clarify, I’ve never ever straightened my hair on my OWN

    I do not have the patience or the coordination to hold a hairbrush and hairdryer simultaneously. For a good 16 yrs, my sister was my “hairstylist” and had given me the best blowouts ever! We truly appreciated the bonding time we had. We would chit chat about our lives and laugh like sisters do for about an hour to 1.5 hours depending on how co-operative my hair wanted to be that day.  

    Lately, with both our crazy schedules we haven’t had the time to bond over a good hair session, so, I took it upon myself to learn how to do my own hair. I put my big girl pants on and bought a $200 blow dryer and a frizz free round brush with the hope that I too was talented like my sister and able to work miracles on my course, curly hair ALL BY MYSELF!

    Quickly, I realised that I had no talent to be doing this all by myself and really shouldn’t be allowed near a hairdryer and brush! I tangled the brush in my hair, the smell of burnt hair consumed my bathroom and my kids basically were left to fend for themselves for 2.5 hours. The result?  A very tired and overly emotional woman with lacklustre hair. All this sweat and literal tears for a disastrous blowout ? NO sorry this wasn’t for me.

    Well I’m positive the hair Angels were watching over me that crazy Sunday afternoon because within a few weeks Revlon sent me THE gift that would change my hair game forever!

    The Revlon One – Step Hair Dryer and Volumizer is a serious game changer! 

    Revlon One Step Volumizer

    Revlon One Step Hair Dryer and Volumizer $64.97

    This one step hair dryer is insanely popular on Amazon. It has over 5000 reviews with 4000 of those reviewers giving it  5 star rating. The lightweight, portable, One – Step design is unique as the oval shape allows for two different types of brushes to work together simultaneously. The longer, flatter side acts as a hair-straightening paddle brush, while the rounded corners lift the hair from its roots and create volume like a round brush does. Compared to a conventional blow dryer, this hair dryer will give you straighter, smoother and shinier hair in less than half the time ! It has 3 heat settings –  High, Medium,Cool and ceramic coating for even heat distribution. Since the One – Step hair dryer is coated with IONIC  Technology, the hair dries faster and with less damage.

    As I stated above, I have curly coarse hair that doesn’t always cooperate with me. With this powerful hair dryer I was able to achieve the look below in about 25- 30 minutes. Besides the fact that my hair needs a GOOD trim, I would say I didn’t do too bad for my first time using the Revlon One – Step hair dryer! 

     

    What do you think?

     

    revlon one step tool

    I decided to step it up a notch and add a few curls to the hairstyle. Since I was feeling fabulous , my husband and I ended up going out for an impromptu date night!

    revlon one step hair dryer

     

    This is me #WINNINGATLIFE.

    I was able to save myself over an hours worth of work AND achieve the look with no tears. Do yourself a favour and test out the One – Step Hair Dryer and Volumizer. I can’t stress how easy and fast you will achieve gorgeous and shiny hair!

    P.S. You can purchase the Revlon One – Step at Walmart, Bed , Bath and Beyond and Long Drugs 🙂

    If you’ve used the Revlon One -Step Hair Dryer and Volumizer, please leave me your thoughts on it.

    XO, MAHA 

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    LIFESTYLE

    MY FALL 2019 ESSENTIALS

    Fall is officially here!

    Yeah !

     I’m sad to bid farewell to super hot lazy days around the pool with the kids. I always dread the colder weather but honestly,  who doesn’t love watching the leaves change colours!

    I also feel like FALL is a chance to renew yourself and sets the tone for comfort. When talking about comfort, obviously, I mean oversized scarves, sweaters, gorgeous booties and of  course a coat that is not only stylish but so cozy!

    Hope you enjoyed this quick read on my Fall essentials 🙂

    Fall Essentials 2019

    1. “on the bright cider” Essie , 2. Babaton”Stedman” Wool Coat, Aritzia

    3.Dark Brown Tote Bag, Amazon,  4. High Neck Black Sweater, H&M

    5. “Paper Bag pants”, J.Crew 6.” Teddy Black “Ankle Booties, LuLus

    7.Wilferd “Shirt Dress”, Aritzia, 8.Wilfred “Diamond Mosaic Triangle Scarf”, Aritzia, 9.  “Confidence in a Cream”, it Cosmetics

     

    XO, MAHA 

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    BEAUTY

    Products I’m loving ATM!!

    I get to test out a lot of products but I don’t always love them all. When I find a product I love, I tend to overuse it until I find another I like more 🙂 I know I ‘m not the only one right?

    The following products are what I’m loving ATM!

    Vichy Minéral 89 Eyes $35

    You all know I’m a huge fan of Minéral 89 Serum and once Vichy launched the eye equivalent I knew I had to get my hands on it ASAP! Minéral 89 Eyes is loaded with pure caffeine and hyaluornic acid to hydrate, brighten and reduces eye bags. I’m about 5 weeks into the my first bottle and I’m impressed. My eyes look brighter and more awake.  There’s significant  hydration in this area but I’m still struggling with eye bags, albeit they are not as pigmented as as usual. I’m hoping with continuous use of the Minéral 89 Eyes the pigmentation will reduce.

    Vichy Minéral 89 Eyes

    You can wear the eye serum alone or under makeup. Personally during the week I add some concealer but on weekends, it’s a bare face ( with sunscreen of course) and thanks to this gem, I feel confident and my little issues that I have with my eye area ( minor fine lines, dullness, flakiness) aren’t noticeable!

     

    Make Up Forever Artist Nude Creme Liquid Lipsticks $25

    Make Up Forever sent me these very wearable and long lasting Artist Nude Creme liquid lipsticks!

    Makeup Forever

    Exposed, on the left, is a medium warn coral beige and Bluff, on the right, is a light warm pinky brown shade.

    They are A-mazing!

    Artist Nude lipsticks come in 12 nude shades and have a satin finish. These are long lasting , non drying, non bleeding and so so creamy. I would definitely call these a hybrid of gloss + lipstick.  They don’t have a sticky or tacky feel to them, and thanks to the small, precise applicator, they apply easily with no skipping on the lips. I’ve been wearing them all Summer! They compliment all skin tones and I will definitely be purchasing a few other shades to take me into the Fall season. I will have to repurchase Buff because I’m down to my last few swipes  🙂 

     

    Pixi Beauty DetoxifEYE $34

    I have instagrammed my love for Pixi’s DetoxifEYE several times and continue to preach my *love* for them on the blog!

    Honestly, they are my fave product from the entire Pixi line. Here’s why I love them so much. Each hydrogel patch is loaded with hyaluronic acid and caffeine to intensely hydrate, smooth and depuff your dark circles and eye bags. Did you notice I said , intensely? If I ‘ve had a sleepless night , which often I do, I apply these in the morning and I feel and look refreshed!


     I have used many different eye patches to hydrate my delicate eye area and none of them ( which were more $$) worked to hydrate as much as DetoxifEYE did. 

    There are 30 pairs in a pack and comes with a spatula to help lift the delicate patches out of the container. I like to leave mine on for as long as I possibly can, around 30 minutes, but the suggested time is 10 min. I do house work with them on, surf the net and most often, I blog with them on just like I’m doing now. Yep that’s me, blogging and detoxifEYEing! They adhere to your skin quickly and feel very comfortable without irritating the eyes. I am on my 2nd package as I go through them very quickly. I absolutely cannot live without my detoxifEYE patches.

    Pixi Beauty DetoxifEYE patches

    Essie ” Watermelon” Nail Polish $10

    All Summer I’ve worn one nail polish colour and it’s this one here,” Watermelon” by Essie.

    Essie " Watermelon" nail polish

     

    It’s a flirty, fun, colourful shade that can be worn with anything. It’s not a true red or pink, it’s a mix of  both IMO! I’ve worn it to the office as well as to weddings. It’s super versatile and I’m basically obsessed! Come Fall , I will transition into something more neutral. I’m also in love with these shades from Essie :

    “Model Citizen”

    model citizen

    “Pin Me Pink”

    essie pin me pink

    ” Dress Call”

    SSIE-gel-couture-dress-call-swatch

    Sephora Face Mask Applicator $10.50

    I feel this name is not really suited for the tool. I bought this little gem on the recommendation of a very talented Sephora makeup artist who uses it to gently exfoliate the skin.

    Sephora face mask applicator

    I’ve become obsessed with exfoliating my face with this little tool. It’s super gentle and sometimes I only use it to massage my skin with water. It’s great for getting rid of dead skin in a very gently and relaxing method. I start with adding the exfoliator product, which is currently Dermalogica Superfoliant Powder Exfoliant to my palm and pick it up with the mask applicator tool. This is just preference, but I prefer to have the skin a bit moist/wet before applying any exfoliator.  In circular motions starting at the top of the forehead, start to work the product , gently, onto the skin, always in circular motion never side to side or up and down. Then move on to the temples, cheeks, nose, chin  and end with the neck area. Remember,  your neck and décolletage need some TLC also!

     

    Have you found a few of your favourites on the blog today? Let me know in the comments below. I love hearing from you!

     

    XO, Maha 

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    BEAUTY

    L’Oréal Fine Flowers Collection

    I  have to admit I was pretty excited to see L’Oréal Paris new Fine Flowers Collection on the shelf at my local drugstore. This collection has been out for about a year now but I have never seen it stocked so of course, out of curiosity, I purchased the 3 products in the collection because #1 I needed to test these out for myself to see what all the hype was about AND  #2 I’m a sucker for cute packaging! Into the cart they went 🙂

     

     

    I purchased the L’Oréal Fine Flowers Cleansing Milk, Cleansing Wipes and Cleansing Gel.

     

    L'Oeral Fine Flowers collection

     

    Cleansing Milk $10.97

    This cleansing milk has extracts of Rose and Jasmine flower which are known for their calming properties. The texture of the cleansing milk is creamy and not runny as some people would think since it has the word “Milk” in the name. A pump or two is all you need to remove makeup, impurities and to achieve a good cleanse to your skin.

    I apply it first thing in the morning to take off my night time skin care ( I could just use water but I like being a bit extra!) or at the end of the night to take off my makeup. A cleansing milk is always the first or second step in my skincare routine. If I had a lot of makeup on then I would definitely use a wipe or makeup remover first but honestly, lately I haven’t reached for any make up remover as my makeup has been B.A.S.I.C and I ‘m loving it!

    I am a big fan of cleansing milk and have been a loyal fan of Nivea Daily Essentials cleansing milk for years now and never thought I would replace it , but I think I found it’s  replacement. The L’Oréal fine flowers cleansing milk will leave your skin feeling smooth, clean and not drying.

     

    L'Oeral Fine Flowers collection

    Cleansing Wipes $10.97

    The cleansing wipes also have a mix of Rose and Jasmine flower to sooth and clean the skin. Out of all 3 products in this collection, I would say the wipes are not my favourite and I will not repurchase them. I found them to be a bit thin compared to other wipes I have used and to get every last bit of makeup on my skin including shadow and foundation I had to use more than one wipe. I don’t’ know why but I also found the wipes themselves to be a bit small in size. The wipes have a slight fragrance thanks to the Rose and Jasmine flower extract and  left my skin feeling smooth but that’s about it for these wipes. I didn’t feel they fully removed my makeup.

    For $11 /25 wipes you’re still getting a great deal, however I did not feel it removed all my makeup and the cloth are too thin for my liking. I won’t be switching from my L’Oréal Ideal Clean makeup wipes to these.

     

    L'Oeral Fine Flowers collection

    Cleansing Gel $10.97

    This Cleansing Gel is a combo of gel and cream texture. It cleans like gel product and moisturizes like a cream product. Does that make sense? It’s a bit runny to dispense with caution as you may get more than what you actually need to use.

    The cleanser has the Rose and Jasmine extracts and is soap, alcohol and “fragrance free” but there definitely is a slight hint of flower in the cleanser.

    I used the cleanser gel after the cleansing milk a few times and honestly did not feel I needed the cleanser gel. The cleanser milk did such a good job, I decide to forgo the gel after a week.

    If you prefer to use gel to take your makeup off and give yourself a clean faced fresh feeling , then this would be a good inexpensive product for you. I personally did not see the benefit since the Cleansing milk did the job for me so well. I have since given the cleanser gel away to a friend of mine as I did not  want it to go to waste.

    Overall I was a but underwhelmed by the L’Oreal Fine Flowers collection. Clearly the big winner for me is the cleansing milk. I was really disappointed with the cleansing wipes as I have used L’Oréal wipes in the past and have raved about how great they are to remove makeup in one shot, but sadly these were a no-go for me.

     

    Have you tried any of the L’Oréal Fine Flowers products? If so please share your thoughts in the comments below !

    XO, MAHA

     

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    BEAUTY, BRAND TALK

    Introducing Skin Chemists London – Caviar For The Skin!

    Skin Chemists is a new brand to the blog and I ‘m pretty excited to be collaborating with them. Their main headquarters is in London, UK with satellite presence in the United States. I was gifted with the following  products to test out for blog: Anti-Aging Day Moisturizer and Caviar Facial Serum.

     

    SKIN CHEMISTS PHOTO

     

    The Anti-Aging Moisturizer ($69) was created to hydrate, smooth and  brighten the skin. It’s very lightweight and doesn’t pill if worn under makeup. What I really enjoyed about this moisturizer is that it has anti-oxidant benefits and can be massaged and absorbed easily on the skin. 1.5-2 pumps was all I needed to cover my whole face.  This formula does not have SPF so that’s a drawback for me but I can easily add SPF on it’s own and we’re good to go.

     

    skin chemists photo

    Skin Chemists Anti-aging Caviar Facial Serum ($88) was created to hydrate, plump and improve overall skin complexion.

    The serum contains ingredients such as Caviar extract which aids in improving skins elasticity and reduces the appearance of fine lines.  Aloe Vera works wonders at soothing and moisturizing the skin instantly and seaweed extract deeply hydrates the skin and contains ant-oxidizing properties.

    My thoughts on this product are a bit mixed. I loved how the moisturizer and serum felt on my skin. It felt as if I was rubbing silk into my skin, no joke! It’s a great formula and my skin really did look brighter, more radiant and hydrated. The mix of the potent ingredients definitely benefits your skin and the overall look and feel is amazing. What I didn’t’ like about the products is that I used them up quicker than expected. I don’t know if I pumped too much product or if the bottle dispensed too much product. I’m leaning towards me dispensing too much product.

    Overall, I’m super excited to see the long-term effects of the moisturizer + serum as I’m hoping to grab another supply of these products to fully ascertain their true benefits.

    Have you tried any Skin Chemists products? Please share your experiences in the comments !

     

    XO, MAHA

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