Which Brush Should I Use to Create Certain Hairstyles?

Did you know that the brush you use can make a difference in the outcome of your hairstyle? In fact, certain brushes – for example, round brush, paddle brush, cushion brush, etc. – are designed to help create specific hairstyles.

FHI Heat hair brushes

Once you learn which hairstyles look best when styled with which brushes, you should be in good shape to create all your favorite hairstyles easily and effortlessly.

Phillip Wilson, the new Global Creative Director of FHI Heat professional hair tools, has kindly answered many burning questions regarding different styles of hair brushes and the hairstyles they are most often used to create. Read on to learn which hair brush you should use to create your favorite hairstyle for a beautiful and flawless finish.

Q . Life Love Beauty – What type of brushes should women use for different styling purposes and what types of hairstyles and styling techniques go best with each of the FHI Heat brushes?

A. Phillip Wilson –


Purpose / Technique of a Round Brush:
To add volume, lift, style direction, and smoothing to fine to medium hair textures.

Best hairstyle for a Round Brush:
Roundness to the shape, a bob, style, and any style with lift in the crown. Short hair with directional lift. Round brushes come in many sizes and the smaller the circumference the tighter the curl. The larger the circumference, the more volume and lift.

Why you should own a Round Brush:
You should own this brush if your desired style need more volume and lift.


Purpose / Technique of a Paddle Brush:
To straighten curly hair, to smooth rough hair, to add shine and direction to medium to coarse textures of hair.

Best hairstyle for a Paddle Brush:
Styles with straight lines and looks closer to the head. Think Heidi Klum, Jennifer Aniston, Nicole Kidman.

Why you should own a Paddle Brush:
To get smooth, shiny, straight hair.


Purpose / Technique of a Cushion Brush:
To smooth and straighten while adding bounce and lift to the hair. Good for all textures of hair. Great for taming over curly hair without completely straightening it.

Best hairstyle for a Cushion Brush:
Any style you plan to curl once blow-dry is complete. Removes moisture and directional styling, forward, or backward, for example. Looks such as Beyonce, Christina Applegate….

Why you should own a Cushion Brush:
To style and control the hair in a natural directional way. To add shine without reducing volume, or adding volume.

FHI Heat hair brushes


Q . Life Love Beauty – Can you tell us what makes FHI HEAT brushes more special than a run-of-the-mill hair brush? 

A. Phillip Wilson – We offer styles in all three areas as well as several sizes suited to different lengths of hair. Our brushes also offer ergonomic grip handles.

Q . Life Love Beauty – How many different types of brushes should women own?

A. Phillip Wilson –
That depends on how many different ways she likes to wear her hair.

When you get a new look in a salon you should always purchase the brush the stylist used and ask them for specific tips for drying at home.

Q . Life Love Beauty – What type of brush do you see as most critical to have on hand?

A. Phillip Wilson –
All three types if you are a professional and one to support the chosen style for a consumer.

Q . Life Love Beauty – Anything else you would like to add?

FHI Heat Global Creative Director Phillip WilsonA. Phillip Wilson – Only the all important – Comb wet hair, never brush it.

About the Expert:
Phillip Wilson is the new Global Creative Director of FHI Heat professional hair tools. To learn more about FHI Heat and FHI Heat products, visit www.fhiheat.com.

Product Review: Palmer’s Olive Butter Formula with Vitamin E Wards off Dry Skin

I am a big fan of cooking with olive oil, as I’ve learned its delicious seasoning ability from my late grandfather. Palmer's Olive Butter with Vitamin E, available at Amazon.com!Pair olive oil with some salt and pepper, rosemary, and garlic, marinate your chicken for a few hours and voila… the perfect entrée for a family meal. So we know olive oil has many excellent qualities in cooking… but is it also as phenomenal in beauty and skincare uses too?

I set out to determine the answer to this question by trying out Palmer’s Olive Butter Formula with Vitamin E. My particular bottle of lotion came in a pink container, as it is part of Palmer’s campaign to fight for a cure to breast cancer. The company donates 10 percent of the sale price of their pink-bottled products to Susan G. Komen for the Cure®. Already, Palmer’s has found favor in my book.

The product’s packaging is sleek, sturdy, and attractive, boasting a baby-pink plastic bottle, a predominantly green label, and boasts all the juicy tidbits you might like to know about Palmer’s Olive Butter Formula with Vitamin E. For starters, the front label confirms that this product is made with certified organic olive oil. Furthermore, the lotion is rich enough in antioxidants to also mention that on the front label.

In addition to certified organic extra virgin olive oil, Palmer’s Olive Butter Formula with Vitamin E contains coconut oil and lots of antioxidants to keep skin looking young and healthy. The lotion features a unique lipid structure to moisturize skin instantly, according to the package, and I would have to agree. This time of year, the skin on my hands, legs, knees, feet, and elbows become especially dry and dull.

Palmer's Olive Butter with Vitamin E, available at Amazon.com!I am happy to report that immediately after using Palmer’s Olive Butter Formula with Vitamin E, my skin stays feeling softer, smoother, and moisturized much longer than the average lotion application. The tone of my skin becomes brighter and even radiant compared to the dull and dry appearance it had only seconds ago.

The lotion is a pretty pastel green color that feels soft on the skin. Palmer’s Olive Butter Formula with Vitamin E is lightly fragrant with a pleasant, organic aroma that lessens over time. This is an especially great quality for anyone who does not want an overpowering lotion fragrance.

All in all, I really enjoy Palmer’s Olive Butter Formula with Vitamin E. I especially love that it contains certified organic extra virgin olive oil. I feel good about using this lotion because I feel like I am making a healthy choice for my body.

An 8.5 fl oz. bottle of Palmer’s Olive Butter Formula with Vitamin E retails for roughly $5 – $8. You can buy your own bottle of Palmer’s Olive Butter at Amazon.com.

Rave Review: Too Faced Lash Injection in Hot Chocolate – Mascara that Lengthens AND Thickens… For Real

I am convinced I have found the perfect mascara. If you are still seeking that amazing cosmetic that will give you flawless, picture-perfect eyes every time, then look no further. Too Faced Lash Injection mascara, available at Amazon.com!Too Faced Lash Injection mascara really lives up to its claims of “extreme thickening & lengthening mascara”. For me, it was love at first blink.

Too Faced Lash Injection in Hot Chocolate is an easy way to get sexy and sultry eyes or pretty, professional eyes. This kickass mascara allows you to apply just a single coat with the same results that require two or even three coats of mascara with just about every other brand I’ve tried. Oh, and while it really delivers thickness to your lashes, it doesn’t leave clumps behind, so you get the best of both worlds.

Too Faced Lash Injection mascara contains Vitamin E and jojoba, and features an incredible 3D formula that builds a tube around each individual eyelash for the ultimate volume, extension, and coverage. The mascara stays put when you want it to, as the formula is weatherproof and waterproof, but as soon as you are ready to wipe it away, Too Faced Lash Injection mascara washes off easily with makeup remover or warm water and (tear-free) soap.

My eyelashes are fairly fine and definitely not the longest lashes ever. With just a single coat of this miracle mascara, I feel like my eyelashes are a mile long and my makeup looks like a million bucks. The Too Faced Lash Injection in Hot Chocolate offers a strong brown coat to lashes, which looks great and works well without being the least bit overpowering.

Too Faced Lash Injection mascara, available at Amazon.com!I find that every time I apply Too Faced Lash Injection mascara, the product goes on evenly and smoothly. While I do notice a few occasional flakes after a long day at work now that my mascara is around six months old, I don’t ever recall seeing a smudge. Leave it to my eyeliner to make all the messes! Oh, and while I haven’t been caught in a downpour yet, I must admit that I have not had any problems with the mascara running down my cheeks when I’ve been standing out in the rain… and it has also withstood the true test at some of my dear friends’ weddings. Had I only known about this product for my own! (sigh)

So the truth is – I have finally found one cosmetic product I cannot live without. Unfortunately, my bottle of Too Faced Lash Injection in Hot Chocolate is pretty darn near used up. I’m definitely going to need to get myself a new one, and maybe this time I’ll spring for the Too Faced Lash Injection Pitch Black mascara, too.

Too Faced Lash Injection retails for just under $20 for a .45 oz. bottle of mascara or around $8.50 for Too Faced Mini Lash Injection mascara.

You can learn more about Too Faced Cosmetics, Inc. at www.toofaced.com.

You can buy your own Too Faced Lash Injection at Amazon.com.

Product Review: OFF! Skintastic Smooth & Dry Insect Repellent

I am a big fan of NOT getting bit by mosquitoes and other annoying insects, so I was very excited to try out this new formula of OFF! familycare Smooth & Dry by Skintastic. OFF! Skintastic Smooth & Dry, available at Amazon.com

My husband and I visited the Adirondack Mountains in Upstate New York twice in August this year. While we are up there, we spend a lot of time outdoors, so keeping bugs pray on hand is always a good idea. We tested the OFF! Smooth & Dry insect repellent several times during our vacation – on a hike through the woods on a mountain and also at the campfire at night.

The insect repellent went on easily and although it still smelled like bug spray, it did not smell as bad as most similar products smell. As product literature claims, the spray did not leave me feeling sticky or gross after application. In fact, after just a few moments, I had already forgotten I was wearing any bug spray.

OFF! Skintastic Smooth & Dry contains the active ingredient DEET in 15% potency. It of course carries a number of warnings and cautionary notices regarding avoidance of contact with eyes and mouth, extreme heat, and so forth.

OFF! Skintastic Smooth & Dry, available at Amazon.com

The back of the can notes that this product repels mosquitoes, gnats, ticks, biting flies, chiggers, and fleas. To apply the OFF! repellent to your face, the best practice is to spray some into the palm of your hand and then apply it to your face evenly, but avoiding your eye area. You can spray the OFF! on your clothing, too – in fact, it works really well on shoes and pant legs, wrists, hoods, and around the waist. You’ll do a good job protecting yourself from insect bites if you follow the directions and spray the repellent at any vulnerable spots.

I read some other reviews that mentioned a white powder / cornstarch residue when using this type of OFF! insect repellent; however I did not notice this on any of the occasions that I used the product. I suppose it is possible that I could notice this in the future use of the product. As long as it is easy to remove by washing, I don’t think I will mind too much. So far I am very pleased with the ease of use, cleaner feeling, and effectiveness of OFF! Skintastic familycare Smooth & Dry insect repellent.

OFF! Skintastic Smooth & Dry Insect Repellent is available at Amazon.com for $6.93 per can.


Product Review: Juara Skincare Candlenut Hand and Body Balm

What a perfect fall scent! Juara Skincare Candlenut Hand and Body Balm delivers a warm and delightful aroma to the body whenever it is applied. Juara Candlenut Hand and Body Balm, available at Amazon.comThe balm truly is rich and luxurious, boasting a thick and emollient consistency that offers full coverage of even the driest parts of your skin.

Juara Skincare Candlenut Hand and Body Balm protects skin from the elements – especially wind and water – by providing this defensive barrier. This product contains Vitamin E and also candlenut oil, which nourishes the skin deeply and moisturizes effectively for a soft and smooth finish.

I like the Juara Skincare Candlenut Hand and Body Balm because a little bit really does go a long way. When I apply this product to my skin, I don’t have to go back and reapply as often as I do with many other types of body crèmes.

Juara Candlenut Hand and Body Balm, available at Amazon.comJuara Skincare Candlenut Hand and Body Balm is on the Juara Web site’s list of fall and winter must-haves, and I must agree. If you like a mildly nutty fragrance that reminds of fresh baked goods, then this product may be perfect for you. The aroma is sweet yet subtle, and memorable.

On an environmental note, Juara is 100 percent vegetarian. The company does not engage in any animal testing and the products contain no artificial colorants, sulfates, or pthalates. It is also dermatologist tested and paraben-free. How’s that for healthy and environmentally sound?

Juara Skincare Candlenut Hand and Body Balm is available in two sizes – travel size (1.2 oz.) or full size (4.75 oz.). The candlenut fragrance is also available in a body creme and body polish. The packaging is stylish and appealing to the eye, featuring a chocolate brown background with a bit of floral edging.

Juara Skincare Candlenut Hand and Body Balm is available in a 4 oz. size at Amazon.com for $25. You can also learn more at www.juaraskincare.com.

October and Beyond Shopping – Purchases of These Products Include a Donation to Breast Cancer Research and Support Groups

October is widely recognized as Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Countless businesses do their part to help a good cause, and many individuals do the same. Auxier Gas has a pink delivery truck for Breast Cancer Awareness.While Breast Cancer Awareness Month takes place in the month of October, there are many things we can do to support Breast Cancer research and prevention all throughout the year. Check out this guide to do your part and contribute to the Breast Cancer prevention, research, and Awareness.

More companies than we can count are making their own contributions to the fight for a cure for Breast Cancer. From stand-alone local businesses to national corporations and everything in between, everyone wants to be a part of this great cause. As an example, Auxier Gas recently debuted its famous pink delivery truck to deliver propane to its customers in 11 counties in Southern Ohio and Northern Kentucky. The truck’s plan is to “drive early detection of breast cancer and awareness among current customers and the community at large”. When 2008 comes to a close, a portion of all the propane sales delivered by the pink truck will be donated to the American Breast Cancer Foundation. Auxier Gas also has its own Think Pink Grillers, a philanthropic barbeque team that will attend community events to raise money for the same charity throughout the fall.

As another example of a local business doing its part, Pilates People Physical Therapy and Fitness in San Diego, CA (www.pilates-people.com) initiated a program known as “Pilates for PINK,” which is raising money for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation through sales of tank tops, toe sox, and selected Pilates for PINK classes, as well as a raffle for a cure where the winner receives a deluxe package of services valued at $290.

“One of the most rewarding gifts you can give is to make a financial contribution to a good cause, and this has become easier and quicker as organizations facilitate online donations,” said Heather Cabot, Yahoo! Web Life Editor.  “Because we are making financial contributions to such personal causes, we want to ensure that our money benefits the right organization and is kept out of the pockets of scammers.”

On that note, those looking to make donations may want to check out Charity Navigator, the country’s largest and most-utilized evaluator of charities, “not all of the nation’s largest Breast Cancer charities are operating efficiently.” Charity Navigator rated more than 20 breast cancer organizations that collectively raise more than $1 billion per year in contributions to fight Breast Cancer. Interestingly, Charity Navigator’s research points out that a number of the organizations do not manage expenses or deliver aid as efficiently as they could.

Charity Navigator’s list of charities with accompanying financial data and ratings is available online for free at www.charitynavigator.org/breastcancer.

“During Breast Cancer Awareness Month, consumers are overwhelmed with opportunities to purchase products that support breast cancer charities,” says Sandra Miniutti, Vice President of Marketing for Charity Navigator. “But if you really want your consumer purchases to make a philanthropic impact, then you need to do your homework and not simply buy the item because it is emblazoned with a pink ribbon. If you can’t discern exactly how much of your purchase will end up in the charity’s coffers, and if you’re not willing to make a direct contribution to the affiliated charity, then don’t buy the product. Instead write a check to a well-run breast cancer charity.”

Of course, if you do want to buy Breast Cancer Awareness gear and apparel, you can check the charity out on Charity Navigator. To follow are a number of exciting “pink ribbon” items that contribute to Breast Cancer research and prevention when purchased during the month of October, or in some cases, at any time. Check out our categories of items and products that donate toward Breast Cancer Awareness, research, and prevention:

From clothing to accessories and more, you can make a difference while changing up your wardrobe or your current look. Check out clothing for yourself, your kids, and other loved ones, and don’t forget the neat accessories listed here. Your purchase makes a difference in the effort these companies are making to contribute toward various Breast Cancer organizations.

Keep Reading for Great Opportunities to Donate and Help…

Product Review: The Power of Plants BOTANICS In Shower Facial Polish by Boots

BOTANICS In Shower Facial Polish by Boots turned out to be not just another run of the mill facial cleanser. I really enjoy this product and I find that it leaves my face feeling cleaner and my skin feeling softer than any other product I’ve used.

Boots BOTANICS In Shower Facial Polish, available at Amazon.com The BOTANICS In Shower Facial Polish has a pretty, pale green color and tiny scrubby microbeads that help to exfoliate your skin, buffing away the dry skin and dead cells, leaving behind soft, new skin. The facial polish’s fragrance is subtle, but despite being light, it is clean and pleasant. This cleanser is gentle on skin and enjoyable to use, as the tiny scrubby beads massage the skin as you cleanse.

 Boots BOTANICS In Shower Facial Polish contains box holly and ginger extracts, which aid in purifying and invigorating the skin and in the exfoliation process. The facial potion also contains beads of Vitamin E which burst during the cleansing process to provide additional care to the skin.Boots BOTANICS In Shower Facial Polish, available at Amazon.com

Although I use several different facial care products each week, Boots BOTANICS In Shower Facial Polish is my favorite because my skin is left feeling radiant, soft, and beautiful. The plant extracts and other botanical ingredients make me feel healthier and as if I’ve taken a good step toward living a better lifestyle.

Because it is so gentle yet effective in revitalizing the skin, Boots BOTANICS In Shower Facial Polish is appropriate for any skin type. One of my other favorite perks of this facial cleanser is that it is very easy and convenient to be able to use it during my shower. To use this product, simply apply a small amount to a wet face and gently massage in a circular motion on forehead, cheeks, chin, and nose. Rinse thoroughly.

My container of Boots BOTANICS In Shower Facial Polish is reaching the end and I will soon have to pick up another bottle. It isn’t often that I find a product that I like enough to establish a brand loyalty, but I think Boots may have me with its BOTANICS In Shower Facial Polish. Kudos!

Boots BOTANICS In Shower Facial Polish is available at Amazon.com for $7.99 for a 3.3 Fl. Oz. bottle.

What Are the Benefits of Using Shaving Cream?

There’s just something about smooth skin. Women strive to rid their bodies of unwanted body hair, leaving behind silky smooth legs, hair-free underarms, and a neatly groomed – or even bare – bikini area. Gillette Satin Care Shaving Gel, available at Amazon.comShaving to remove body hair is a task that is done sometimes on a daily basis, if not every other day. To get the closest, most effective shave, many women turn to shaving cream to facilitate the shaving process. Shaving creams and shaving gels are available in a wide variety of brands, styles, and fragrances, and they truly do impact the quality of your shave.

Hair-free is a preference many women share, determined to free their legs, underarms, and even bikini area of body hair. Shaving can become a fairly mechanical process over time, but nicks, cuts, and missed hairs still prevail time and time again. Using shaving cream offers a number of benefits for a closer shave, as well as a more luxurious shaving experience than simply using soap and water to shave.

A variety of different shaving creams, razors, and shaving products saturate the market, so it is important to test different items until you find the ones that work best for your body. Even though using shaving cream may take a little longer than shaving with the soap suds on your loofah, you will find the benefits of using shaving cream or shaving gel to be well worthwhile.

The Benefits of Using Shaving Cream

Shaving cream provides a smooth, close shave that is both gentle and accurate. Due to its thick consistency, shaving creams and shaving gels tend to stick to the skin better than soap suds. Can you imagine a man trying to shave his face with just soap and water? The results could be painful and disastrous. Why should we give our own body parts any less consideration?

Women can enjoy the various fragrances available for shaving creams, as well as the products’ delightful moisturizing properties. Using shaving cream often leaves legs softer and free from dry skin longer than if using only soap and water to shave. Some shaving gels and creams actually contain nutrients and antioxidants.

eos shaving creamShaving Cream Product Reviews – Two Hot Products to Leave Your Skin Silky Smooth
As research for this article, I had the pleasure to test various shaving techniques and products to determine a few things I would like to recommend. My favorite new shaving creams are eos and Gillette Satin Care Shave Gel in Alluring Avocado.

Firstly, eos (evolution of smooth) ultra moisturizing shave cream is available in three delightful fragrances – Pomegranate Raspberry, Island Blue, and Vanilla Bliss. I must admit – some of the fun of using these products is that two of them also incorporate a pretty hint of color to the cream. The eos shaving cream easily dispenses from an ergonomic, rust-proof bottle with a convenient pump dispenser. The bottle is plastic and easily recyclable, which also scores major points!

I would be remiss if I failed to mention another great feature of eos – you can use it wet or dry. The cream is thick and nourishing, and contains natural ingredients like aloe, oat, and shea butter, as well as antioxidant vitamins C + E. The skin on my legs didn’t dry out after I dried off from the shower. In fact, my legs remained soft and smooth longer after the shave than when using just soap and water.

Gillette Satin Care Shave Gel in Alluring Avocado offers a full, foamy shaving solution, complete with aloe, jasmine, and orange blossom for a luxurious shaving experience. This product leaves skin soft and satiny smooth, and of course, moisturized to the max. The shaving gel comes in a traditional can with contents under pressure and a metal ring on the bottom, however, the pump releases gel in a smooth stream for perfect application directly on the body or dispensed into the hands.

I really loved the volume of Alluring Avocado’s foam – and a little bit really does go a long way. This shaving product makes an everyday shave more effective and less like a chore. Gillette Satin Care Shave Gel offers a pleasant, calming fragrance and a supremely rich lather.

The Gillette Venus Embrace Razor is the perfect companion to either of these shaving cream products. The blades stay ever-so-sharp for what seems like an eternity of uses, and the razor’s shape is perfect for contouring around the female anatomy.

The line of eos shaving cream retails for $4.99 and is available at Target, Wegmans and Drugstore.com. Gillette Satin Care Shave Gel in Alluring Avocado is available at Amazon.com for $2.99.

Five Perfect Pomegranate Beauty Products

Often perceived as a royal fruit, pomegranate offers many healing and rejuvenating qualities. Pomegranates are recognized as superfruits, meaning they boast superb nutritional and antioxidant value as well as delicious taste. In addition to having great nutrients and curative properties, pomegranates Pomegranates are SUPERFRUITS! (Photo courtesy of Scott Liddell, morgueFile.com.)played a role in Greek mythology and they are still considered a fairly exotic fruit today.

Pomegranates grow on small shrubs or trees, reaching size ranging from that of a lemon to a grapefruit. The seeds of the pomegranate are the edible fruit that people enjoy. Each pomegranate may contain as many as 600 seeds or more. In honor of these delightful and healthy fruits, we have scoured the beauty scene to find five practical and succulent pomegranate beauty products for your consideration.

For the Body
nubar Pomeganate Delight LotionNubar Skin Essentials Pomegranate Delight Mind Clearing Aromatherapy Hand and Body Lotion is a bright pink lotion that contains Shea Butter and Antioxidants A & E. This product is paraben free and packaging suggests that it provides cellular defense and skin cell revitalization due to the pomegranate ingredients.

The cream is smooth and fragrant, offering sheer coverage and deep moisturizing of your body, from rough elbows and knees to the tips of your fingers and toes. Pomegranate Delight is cruelty free. Learn more about Pomegranate Delight at nubar’s home on the Web.

For the Face
Pomessence Daily Cleanser is a delicately fragrant and refreshing facial cleanser that works beautifully on all skin types. You can use the product on a wet face or a dry face, massaging a small dab into your skin. Pomessence Daily Cleanser is gentle and doesn’t sting if it gets in your eyes. You can follow this step with the Pomessence Moisturizing Exfoliant and Pomessence Daily Moisturizer for the ultimate in pomegranate pleasure.Pomessence Starter Kit

Pomessence Moisturizing Exfoliant features a light fruity fragrance and a soothing and moisturizing solution that leaves skin feeling reenergized. Use the pomegranate exfoliant after cleansing skin on the face and neck areas. You do not need to rinse away the product. Pomessence Moisturizing Exfoliant contains 5% glycolic acid and pycnogenol.

Pomessence Daily Moisturizer delivers special antioxidants and nutrients to the body with a healthy dose of moisturizing. The product is light and gentle enough to apply near the eyes and it can effectively be worn underneath makeup. The appealing pomegranate fragrance is constant in this product line. You may use Pomessence Daily Moisturizer with both of the above ingredients, with the cleanser only, or even by itself.

To learn more about any of these products, please visit Pomessence on the Web.

Murad Energizing Pomegranate Lip Protector with SPF15For the Lips
Murad® Energizing Pomegranate Lip Protector SPF15 offers thirsty lips a deep splash of fruity delight. This product is bright, rosy pink in color and features a thick, liquid gloss that smoothes and hydrates lips. The SPF15 element truly adds to the benefits of this great lip slick, making it the perfect beauty item to tote along to the beach, to a tennis match, or on just about any outdoor activity. The pomegranate lip gloss delivers a pleasant and fruity aroma while coating even the driest lips with a blanket of sheen.

Pomegranate offers so many healing properties to the body in addition to a lovely fragrance. If you’re on the lookout for a new and healthy beauty product to try, consider one of these great pomegranate treats!

Types of Makeup Brushes and Choosing Good Makeup Brushes

When it comes to applying makeup, every woman has her own technique. Some hurriedly splash on the color in a fine-tuned and precise five-minute routine before work, while others may enjoy more of a relaxed makeup application style. Some women rely on makeup applicators, sponges, cotton swabs, and their own bare hands to create the masterpiece of a made-up face. Others may turn to a variety of makeup brushes to assist with the process.A brush for every purpose... (Photo courtesy of morgueFile.com.)

Here is a general overview of a few of the main types of makeup brushes available as well as a few tips to help you choose makeup brushes that will be best suited for your needs.

Some points you may wish to consider before purchasing any makeup brushes:
– Are you a beginner or are you fairly skilled at applying makeup?
– Do you wear a lot of makeup or just in a few places (like mascara and lipgloss)?
– Do you want or need an entire set of makeup brushes or just one or two special kinds?
– Do you already have the makeup you wish to use with the makeup brushes or will you need to get some?
– Is the brush made from “cruelty free” animal hair? Do you prefer natural or synthetic bristles?

ecoTOOLS are environmentally friendly makeup brushes!If you’d like to treat yourself to some environmentally friendly makeup brushes, consider the ecoTOOLS™ Bamboo 5-Piece Makeup Brush Set with its own carrying case or choose from a variety of ecoTOOLS makeup brushes. ecoTOOLS offers a bamboo eyeliner brush, bamboo eye shading brush, bamboo blush brush, and a bamboo powder brush that are all cruelty free and composed of natural and recycled materials.

Each ecoTOOLS brush features a sleek and comfortable bamboo handle and recycled aluminum ferrule component connecting the bristles to the handle. The bristles are made of synthetic Taklon and, of course, the bamboo is a highly renewable resource.

If you are a beginner, you may wish to start out with relatively inexpensive brushes until you get the hang of it. Your best bet to getting your feet wet at applying makeup with makeup brushes may be to visit your favorite department store’s makeup counter or to stop in to see your salon stylist for a makeup session.
Bare Escentuals Tapered Blush Brush
Once you are ready to start shopping for your new makeup brushes, consider the type of makeup you’ll be applying. Here are some basic tips to help you choose makeup brushes that are best suited for you.

Blush Brush –
Blush brushes offer a nice shape for applying makeup. They may be tapered or angled, and typically feature a soft and somewhat fluffy set of bristles with a smooth and reasonably sized handle.

A few blush brushes to consider are Bare Escentuals Angled Blush Brush, Bare Escentuals Tapered Blush Brush, or the Avon mark Blush + Bronzer Brush.

Eyeliner Brush –
Eyeliner brushes are long and thin, offering an angled set of bristles for precision in makeup application.

These types of makeup brushes allow you to define your eyes effectively and easily without any annoying pencil presses. The brush design is sleek and comfortable to use and the angled bristles form a super thin line for tracing around the lash line.

Consider the Sephora Brand Professionnel Platinum Angled Eyeliner Brush #23 with its angled tip for easier application or the Bare Escentuals Eyeliner Brush with an ultra fine tip.

Eye Shading Brush –
Eye shading brushes are great for highlighting the brow area for a lightened look or for blending colors on your eyelids. The brush is a little larger and thicker than an eyeliner brush but it still offers the same slender feeling and ease of use.

Try out Bare Escentuals Wet/Dry Shadow Brush or ecoTOOLS™ bamboo eye shading brush for smoothly blended eyes.

Powder Brush and Illuminating Powder Brush –
The fullest brush in the kit, powder brushes offer full coverage and soft, extra fluffy bristles. The soft bristles can effectively apply loose or pressed powder to the face, as well as illuminating powder or loose sparkly dust for a shimmer effect. Many women and professional makeup artists also choose to use Kabuki brushes to apply powder to the face.

For the illuminating effect, check out Stila #24 Double-Sided Illuminating Powder Brush. For the traditional loose powder application, consider Clinique Blended Face Powder and Brush.

Tickled Pink Kabuki BrushKabuki Brush –
Kabuki brushes are cute, short and stout makeup brushes that have bristles very similar to powder brushes. These brushes feature a short cylinder for a handle and a wide and puffy set of soft bristles. They are exactly what you would picture your stylist having in her makeup collection!

For a fun and flirty spin, try the adorable, itty bitty Tickled Pink Kabuki Brush from The Brush Company. It features ultra soft bristles and non-stop pink coloring, and a teeny size that’s perfect for stashing in your makeup kit or dropping in your purse when you’re on the go. If you are looking for a larger size, consider the Wet n Wild Kabuki Powder Brush. This brush features black and chrome coloring and a slightly larger
size – and it’s cruelty free, to boot!

Lip Brush –
Lip brushes are especially useful for reducing the amount of makeup we wear on our lips, and also for blending in lip liner. You can use a lip brush to apply lipstick as lip liner or you can simply apply lipstick as needed. Many lip brushes are retractable, offering women a small bit of product storage for a night’s worth of touch-ups.

If you would like to try your luck with a lip brush, look into a retractable brush like Click-A-Lip Retractable Lip Brush or a brush with a cover for the tip, like CARGO Covered Lip Brush.

* * *

Depending on your budget, you can find many makeup options available to you for every price point. For additional help in selecting and using makeup brushes, see your favorite stylist or visit the department store’s makeup counter for some great tips!

Editor’s Note: I’ve had the pleasure of testing out the ecoTOOLS products as well as the Tickled Pink Kabuki Brush and Wet n Wild Kabuki Brush. They all seem to be of excellent quality and especially easy to use.

Rave Review: FHI Heat Nano Weight Pro 1800 Blow Dryer

Looking for the perfect blow dryer? Then look no further…..

If someone had told me simply switching the type of hairdryer I use really could change the appearance and condition of my hair, I never would have believed it. I have tried dozens of products and several different drying techniques, all with slightly different effects on my hair. None, however, have delivered the same volume and shape to my hair as the FHI Heat Nano Weight Pro 1800 blow dryer.

FHI Heat Nano Weight Pro 1800 Blow Dryer

My first experience with the FHI Heat Nano Weight Pro 1800 dryer left me speechless. I merely shampooed and conditioned my hair in the shower, and then dried it with this product – then, VOILA! My hair looked vibrant and full of life.

The layers really came out and the dryer left my hair with so much body I almost had to tame it back! This was a truly wonderful experience for me, as I don’t always have a lot of time to spend on my hair. The blow dryer not only [pretty much] styled my hair for me, but also brought my hair from damp to dry in only a minute and a half or less!

It really amazed me how quickly my hair dried while using my new dryer. I first tried it on the weekend but I am very excited at how much time this will save me during the week before work. After drying my hair with the heated setting, I turned on the cool setting to close the follicles and smooth out my hair. The results as compared to my old hairdryer really astonished me, and even my husband made mention of how great my hair looked!


This efficient dryer is silver and black with high, low, and cool settings. It features ceramic technology, Nano-Fuzeion™ technology, tourmaline crystals for production of negative ions, and low EMF (electromagnetic field). The Nano-Fuzeion™ technology delivers a combination of Nano-Titanium, Nano-Titanium Dioxide, and Nano-Silver particles to remove bacteria, static, and toxins for excellent conditioning and shine. This technology trifecta also succeeds in promoting health and purification for hair. The negative ions and tourmaline technology allows hair to soak up and retain more moisture for a smoother, shiny appearance.

FHI Heat Nano Weight Pro 1800 Blow DryerThe FHI Heat Nano Weight Pro 1800 is lightweight and comfortable to use. It is a lot quieter than other blow dryers I’ve used, and it distributes effective heat that is not scalding to the hands or scalp. The far infrared heat this dryer emits is gentle and successful in preventing damage to hair. The dryer’s ceramic heater produces gentle heat for drying hair without causing any frizzy results.

According to product literature, the FHI Heat Nano Weight Pro 1800 blow dryer is meant for use at home and for stylists seeking a beginner’s hair tool. Dryers are rated for 800 hours of use. I am really excited about my new hairdryer and I look forward to healthier, more beautiful hair with less effort, thanks to FHI Heat technology.

The FHI Heat Nano Weight Pro 1800 blow dryer retails for $150. The package also includes a diffuser and concentrator. The product is available in pink or in a silver and black combination, and is offered at numerous fine hair salons and beauty retailers nationwide, including ULTA, Pure Beauty, and Beauty First. For more information, visit FHI Heat on the Web at www.FHIHeat.com.

Shampoo and Conditioner for All Hair Types

If you want shiny, wavy, curly, fragrant, or naturally beautiful hair, you have come Paul Mitchell Lavender Mint Shampoo and Conditioner Setto the right place. I’ve scoured the shelves and put my own hair to the test with a variety of different shampoos and conditioners to bring you my best of spring beauty for your hair. These products offer different benefits for different hair types and styles.

Read on to see what shampoo and conditioner beauty pick will work best for you!


Suave Professionals Vibrant Shine Shampoo and Conditioner

Top Traits: Shiny, Flirty Fragrance, Clean

After using Suave Professionals Vibrant Shine Shampoo and Conditioner, my hair instantly felt cleaner and smoother. I noticed a distinct sheen to it when I styled my hair as usual. The shampoo and conditioner left my hair extra silky and easy to manage. The product line claims it restores hair’s shine as well as Sebastian®. Although I haven’t ever tried Sebastian, I really did enjoy the results of Suave on my hair – so I would believe it!

The fragrance of these products is light, flirty, and delightful. The shampoo contains tiny sparkles that glisten in the product, which must lend themselves to the quest for shiny hair. The conditioner is a smooth and creamy potion that works its way easily through hair. The Suave Professionals Vibrant Shine Shampoo and Conditioner products work best with normal to dry hair, but it is gentle enough for color-treated hair.

Suave Professionals Vibrant Shine Shampoo and Conditioner products contain silk amino acids, which work to remove build-up and restore your hair’s natural shine. I’m convinced that this is why my hair felt so soft and clean after using the products. Both products also contain Vitamin E, which is great for so many reasons!

Suave Professionals Vibrant Shine Shampoo and Conditioner retail for $1.92 to $2.49 for 14.5 oz.
Suave Professionals Vibrant Shine Shampoo and Conditioner are complemented by counterpart styling aids: Suave Professionals Vibrant Shine Hairspray and Suave Professionals Vibrant Shine Mist. Suave products and the Suave Professionals Vibrant Shine collection can be purchased at various drugstores, mass merchandisers, and grocery stores across the country.

To learn more about Suave products, visit www.suave.com.


Sunsilk Waves of Envy Shampoo and Conditioner

Top Traits: Waves that truly do behave, great smell

Beach tossed waves are perfect for this time of year, and so is Sunsilk Waves of Envy Shampoo and Conditioner. These products offer a lovely fragrance of rose, jasmine with cassis, amber musk, peach, and mango. I absolutely adore Sunsilk Waves of Envy Shampoo and Conditioner, from its pretty aqua-colored potion to its luscious and lightly fruity, flirty fragrance, to the way it makes my hair flip beautifully after each use.

Sunsilk Waves of Envy Shampoo and Conditioner left my hair feeling truly refreshed and fashionable. After the first time using it, I felt as if I had been to the salon to have my hair cut and styled. The waves really came out in my stubborn hair, which normally resists curls and waves of all kinds. The Sunsilk Waves of Envy collection contains sea botanicals and light moisture therapy to promote smooth and flowing waves for manageable hair. The shampoo and conditioner products are safe for color-treated hair.

In the product lineup, Sunsilk Waves of Envy Shampoo and Conditioner are just the beginning. A lovely Waves of Envy Sea Mist spray product refreshes hair and encourages more definition and texture for beach waves. The spray contains silicone for shine and sea salts for the perfect tousled beach look. Waves of Envy Gel & Cream Twist delivers sculpted glamour waves with definition and longevity.


Sunsilk Waves of Envy Shampoo and Conditioner retail for around $3.49 for 12 oz. Sunsilk products are available at mass market retail stores such as CVS Pharmacy, Rite Aid, Target, and various grocery stores, to name a few. For more information, visit Sunsilk on the Web at www.sunsilk.com. For additional wave-enhancing tips, visit www.gethairapy.com.