Sunscreen Dispensers

When I was a kid, my grandparents had a boat that they docked in Rhode Island. My family would visit and we’d hang out on the docked boat or go on little boating adventures on the Narragansett Bay. I marveled at the novelty of being, “entrusted,” with a moment of, “control,” over the helm. When docked at the marina, I took great joy in feeding the resident (jerk) swan flock fistfuls of Cheerios. I can’t recall ever visiting the area’s beaches, though.

Last weekend, languishing with a mouthful of gauze while flicking through Google Now cards on my phone, I was presented a headline about the town of Narragansett. Initially confused, I realized it was due to my interest in sun safety. Apparently, the small town has installed sunscreen dispensers. Even better, they are free for beach-goers to use!

What?! This is a thing?! (I don’t get out much – my area doesn’t have these.)

Sunscreen DispensersSunscreen Dispensers in Narragansett, RI.

How cool is that?! The sunscreen dispensers are paired with signage that features application instructions, sponsorship information of a local business that helped fund the installation and maintenance of the dispensers, as well as a mirror.

As it happens, they aren’t the pioneers. Some hasty Googling lead me to find that New York City has placed 100 dispensers across 27 locations including beaches and even a fishing pier. Miami Beach did it a couple years ago! In 2015, they installed 50 dispensers at beaches, pools, and parks. Other areas have, too.

It’s an awesome public service. I love the example Narragansett, NYC, and Miami Beach are setting in regards to sun safety. Even if you didn’t use what was provided, simply seeing the dispensers is a good enough reminder to apply and reapply at the beach. I hope that more areas (not just beaches) follow suit to help encourage good sun protection habits; I’d love to see them paired with water fountains.

Worth it? Drunk Elephant C-Firma Day Serum

Drunk Elephant C-Firma Day SerumDrunk Elephant C-Firma Day Serum, $80

I mentioned in my June favorites that buying Drunk Elephant C-Firma Day Serum. I adore this damn serum. A colleague and paled at the cost when I sang its praises; I understand. I love it, plan to repurchase, and still recoil from the price tag.

Gun Shy

Short of tools like my Luna Mini or Clarisonic Mia2, I don’t tend to spend much on individual products. With a few exceptions, I’m generally of the opinion that beauty need not break the bank.

Being young (enough – and only for now, don’t worry, this isn’t a cocky statement) and skeptical of products promising miracles, I pass on a lot of prestige and luxury skincare. Aside from my tools, none of my skincare routine is prestige at this point!

Too Young?

Never. As far as I’m concerned, mid-twenties is a perfectly reasonable time to reconsider your approach to skincare even if you aren’t suffering a skin mutiny as I was.

Once my acne was under control, I decided my skin could use a boost in the liveliness department. Although I find makeup fun, I much prefer to have healthy, radiant skin than to need to slap on product to fake it.

Mid-twenties is not too young to start anti-aging products – and with a demanding career, my skin was looking a bit tired. I don’t want or need anything hardcore. No retinol here (at this stage in my life). But I do have under-eye circles, some dullness and uneven tone, etc. I decided that Vitamin C was the place to be for my needs right now.

Influences on my Purchase Decision

A blog I’ve followed for years and implicitly rely on touted Ole Henriksen’s Truth Serum but when I got into reviews and other comparisons, many sources seemed to suggest the Drunk Elephant product to be superior. Part of this is packaging, part is the concentration and type of Vitamin C itself, and the other part of are the other ingredients. I was leery about spending that much on a type of product I’d never tried before, so I kept searching.

Interestingly, although Stefanie Nicole (check out her channel here) has a YouTube channel, she works in the beauty industry on the manufacturing and distribution side of things. She also has a no-nonsense attitude that resonates with me. I appreciate her willingness to say, “I didn’t care for this,” or, “This product didn’t perform well for the price.” We need more of that! In this case, Drunk Elephant C-Firma does, in her opinion, perform well for the price.

Upon hearing her ringing endorsement of Drunk Elephant C-Firma Day Serum, I decided to splurge during the Spring BI/VIB Sale. My skin was consistent at that point (not as stable as it is now, but better!), and I felt comfortable adding a variable.

Read more…

L’Oreal Telescopic Carbon Black Mascara

Note: This is a legacy post that has been given a facelift! Some minor adjustments have been made to format and readability, but the content is the same with spot-updates from today!


(In 2015) I’d been using L’Oreal Voluminous Million Lashes Excess for a while and liked it well enough. I was picking up a waterproof tube (of something else) for a wedding I went to in June 2015 when I decided to pick up a tube of L’Oreal Telescopic Carbon Black, too (not waterproof).

Telescopic Carbon Black Mascara - Stock Photo

TL;DR? I love it.

Read more…

Saturday Extra: WTF

Saturday Extra!

I’m at home with a mouth full of gauze, browsing the internet because I can’t take a nap. The offending tooth 26 has been evicted from my mouth. Due to my crowding, the gap isn’t that bad. The worst of it is the saliva accumulation with the gauze. Ugh.

Anyway, I come across things online that are not beauty things that give me cause to ask, “WTF?” This tweet from Sephora was in March – I took a screenshot and filed it for one-such post.

 

Saturday Extra - WTF SephoraFashion is adjacent to beauty I guess, so here are a few:

I don’t think this is still available for sale on Nordstrom’s site (thank god). Do you ever think that designers sit down, intentionally draw and produce something god-awful just to laugh even harder when some buffoon buys it? I do. This trench coat is proof.

WHBM…why?! Camo. Capri (read: flattering on no-one). Elastic openings. externally-stitched pockets. Paired with, no less, an off-shoulder, ruffle-sleeve blouse and open heel, open toe sandal-bootie monstrosities. Whiskey tango foxtrot. What on earth were you guys thinking?

Steam of Consciousness & Chatter

Earlier this week, I received a digital copy of my ClinCheck treatment review. I’m beyond excited about it, and even though I’m fairly self-conscious about my teeth, I shared it on Instagram. How millennial of me.

A post shared by Beauty Skeptic (@beautyskeptic) on



Each stage is a new tray!

Tomorrow, I have an extraction. Tuesday, I get my first Invisalign aligner trays. To celebrate that, let’s take a brief break from my usual, structured content.

Every now and then we all have a thought we want to share for the amusement of others or to get their opinions. I tend to experience them in bursts, but since my husband obviously has no interest in beauty-related-anything, I don’t commonly have an outlet. Sometimes I take to Twitter when it occurs to me, but I’m just not engaging enough on Twitter, ha.

In no particular order…


Ever apply a self-tanner with a color guide or instant bronzing effect and wonder, “Who the hell did they met that this shade would be flattering on, ever?”

Seriously. It wasn’t orange, it wasn’t bronze, it wasn’t brown – it was the least-possibly-flattering mix of all three with just a touch of green thrown in. I am pretty sure humans just don’t come in this color. Prodigious.

I was applying a gradual sunless tanner that also had an instant effect and this occurred to me while I was smearing it unattractively all over my face. My husband looked on in horror. “Don’t worry, it comes off,” I explained. Horror turned to confusion. “…it stimulates melanin production, so what you see now is basically just dye.”

Afterwards, the natural coloring that develops is pretty nice. But maybe don’t go out in public with Tanwise Self-Tanning Face Gel on your face.


I really enjoy having painted nails. After executing a manicure, I sat there, supplies before me, pouting. Why? Because it was 8:30PM and I just spent 20 minutes and still had about hour to go if I wanted flawless polish. The world is cruel.

You know who didn’t have to wait for painted nails?

Sailor Moon.

I called it a night, finished drafting posts and went to bed with naked nails.

#moonprismpower


…But like why invest in product development and R&D when you can throw lavish influencer party-vacations with luxury presents that aren’t even affiliated with the brand? Or, remarkably, invest in ways to slightly lower cost (and price to boost popularity WITHOUT sacrificing handsome profit margins)?

Just sayin’.

#exclusivityiskey


A girlfriend of mine with badass hair tried Overtone conditioner to help revive her hair since she got screwed over for her next color appointment. The regular conditioner made her color-treated hair soft and punched a little more life into it after one use. She expects that the Weekly Deep Treatment will do more for her, though.

This first picture is her fresh from the salon…

 

…and this second one is eight weeks later with Overtone. It’s no secret how difficult it is to maintain red, so these are great results!

My silver-haired girlfriend (yes, she’s still rocking the silver!) will be pleased to know that 1) it works and 2) it is both cruelty-free and vegan.

As for me, I’m shocked and entertained that it isn’t only intended for maintenance. Their photos suggest that you can color with it, check it out:

I’m not up for Exciting Hair at this point in my life (in fact, I have another balayage appointment soon – I’m such an exciting human) but I really enjoy watching the transformations. Out of curiosity, I’m going to look into real-life attempts; I think it would be interesting to see if it can live up to its claims.


Here’s to an undoubtedly lame weekend with gauze in my mouth and the first uncomfortable step to a straighter smile. I will be changing gauze, eating applesauce and mashed potatoes, pouting, taking ibuprofen, folding laundry, and writing this weekend – what are your plans?