Live Simply

Beauty + Skincare Favorites

Do you have a special time that is just for you?  If you do, it probably isn’t a lot of time.  Me time seems really hard to come by.  I often get an hour for reading on Saturdays.  I love it because I can enjoy a homemade latte and a great book before attacking the day.  I also try to make a little time for myself on Sunday nights.  I take a long shower and deep condition my hair.  I put on a face mask while I give myself a pedicure.  I typically do this to the very soothing sounds of my husband’s awful choices in television: Gold Diggers or Moon Shiners.  If you don’t know what these shows are, congratulations.  I envy you.

This weekend was different.  The husband was busy and I got the television to myself.  It was me, my girls, and Pride and Prejudice on DVD.  Here is a shot of said me time to prove that it does happen from occassionally. (Yes, that is a basket of clothes that need to be ironed in the chair to the left. It compliments the basket on the floor that is filled with clothes that also need to be ironed. Jealous?)

Before I start today’s post, I want you to be aware that this post does not include any affiliate links.  This post is not an ad.  I bought each of these items with my own money; no products were provided to me by the manufacturers.


Since I am having a little beauty party by myself, I would love to share some of my beauty and skincare favorites.  I have a handful of products that I love and use all the time.  When I use them, they make me feel fabulous.  If you are thinking about trying something new, here are a few items you might want to consider.

Let’s talk hair and dry shampoo.  I have used several different dry shampoos.  I have long hair so it takes a bit of time to dry after washing; it also takes a considerable amount of time to style.  I save time and conserve my professional color by not washing my hair every day.

About 5 years ago (I can’t believe it has been that long!) I stopped washing my hair every day.  I am active and live in the south; my hair sometimes needs a little pick me up.  Enter dry shampoo.

When I first found the miracle that is dry shampoo, I tried several brands.  I first tried Bed Head’s Dirty Secret.  It came recommended by my hair stylist.  The product was good, but it came with a hefty $18 a bottle price tag. I tried TRESemme, Suave, and, later,  Herbal Essences.  TRESemme’s dry shampoo didn’t last all day, even if I didn’t touch my hair at all.  Suave actually made my hair look dirtier.  Herbal Essences smelt amazing, but didn’t do much either.

I was making do with TRESemme’s dry shampoo until a new stylist told me about Not Your Mother’s. This stuff is amazing and costs almost the same amount as the other 3 brands.  For less than $5 I can go 3 days, and sometimes 4, without having to wash my hair.  It is great at adding body back to my hair as well as hiding the oil.

The next item on my list is my brush.  I recently purchased this beauty from Ulta for about $20. You can get one here. If you want to give yourself a great blowout, you are going to need a great tool.  The long handle is comfortable in my hand.  The longer wand helps to cover more hair in less time.  I feel I have had better hair days since switching to this new brush.

Let’s talk skin care.  We all know that not all cleansers and moisturizers are the same. I wear make up that is tough to get off.  The Biore Charcoal cuts through my make up and helps to keep my pores clear.  And I love the refreshing feel of the eucalyptus.

Don’t have time to give yourself facials?  I try to give myself one every Sunday, but that doesn’t always happen.  I love this newer product by Aveeno.  It is a 60 second in-shower facial.  I wash my face and then massage a small amount of the Aveeno product onto my face and neck.  I use the 60 seconds to massage my skin.  I then rinse and continue the rest of my shower.  It is that easy.

The next item on the list is my daily moisturizer: Olay Regenerist Luminous brightening and protecting lotion. They have a night cream, but the day cream is my favorite from this line.  It is fragrance free and includes SPF 15.  I use it every day before I apply my makeup. I like that it moisturizes my skin, helps to fade the small dark spots of sun damage I have near my temples, and doesn’t make my face look too oily.

Let’s talk makeup.  I started wearing makeup when I was about 13.  I had a tough time with acne when I was young.  As a result, I was able to convince my mom to let me wear makeup.  She hooked me up with the good stuff from Clinque.  I love her for doing that.  Seriously…that stuff is amazing.

As I got older, my skin finally stopped freaking out, and I could try new things.  Here are five items I simply cannot live without:

  1. Urban Decay’s Naked 3,
  2. Stila’s Stay All Day Foundation and Concealer,
  3. Juice Beauty’s Stem Cellular Repair CC Cream,
  4. IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye Cream, and
  5. Bare Minerals 5 in 1 BB Advanced Performance Cream Eye shadow. 

The Urban Decay Naked 3 Eye shadow palate is my favorite neutral eye shadows.  I wear them every day and have for years.  I have barely made a dent in any of the colors.  It still looks brand new.  And it comes with a shadow brush…a really good one, in fact.  For $54 it is worth every penny.

I recently started wearing a new foundation: Stila’s Stay All Day Foundation.  It is a container with foundation at the bottom and a concealer is in the lid.  It is a nice product, but I prefer the foundation over the concealer.  It covers my aging skin without making me look like a lizard.  I need a little more coverage than I did when I was younger, especially during the winter months when my skin gets really light.  This product is a little pricey at $40 a bottle, but I love it.

I didn’t think I was going to get on the CC cream bandwagon.  However, I found that during the summer months, I like a lighter makeup.  This CC cream is a color correcting, tinted moisturizer.  It is great for days when I am going to be outside. It is a little pricey as well at $39 a bottle.  However, I have been using this same bottle for about 6 months.  It is worth the price.

Looking for a great concealer?  I have one for you: IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye Cream.  I got a sample a few years ago and have been hooked ever since.  It goes on thick so it stays in place all day.  It is a little pricey at $18 a bottle, but it has lasted me forever.  I have had this one bottle for more than a year.  I am afraid it might go bad before I use it all.

Have issues with your eye shadow disappearing?  You should try Bare Minerals 5 in 1 BB Advanced Performance Cream Eye shadow.  This cream eye shadow is more than just an eye shadow; it is also a primer.  That means that it really sticks to your skin.  I use it every day.  I sometimes wear it on its own.  Other times I wear it under my Urban Decay Naked eye shadow.  It is only $18.  It usually lasts me about 3 to 4 months.  For how great it is, it is definitely worth the price.

Ready for some me time?  Grab a soft blanket, a glass of wine, and a good book.  Snuggle up for about an hour to relax on your own.  You will be glad you did!