Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Le Métier de Beauté Ultimate Hydrator

Any time I see a product name like "Ultimate Hydrator, Hydrate, Soothe, Calm and Repair" I get suspicious. Ultimate, of course, means the best achievable. Hydrator gives me the expectation that the product will make my skin less dry - much less dry. I told you last week that I would find out more information about this $225 product - primarily because I wanted to know what's in it that would live up to its billing.

I did, and I'm impressed. I had tried it in the store, but I put a very small amount on top of layers of product: moisturizer, foundation, blush - you get the picture. It wasn't a fair test, particularly since you are supposed to apply it right before your makeup.

Formulated to lock optimal moisture levels into the skin while delivering hydration deep below the surface to boost hydration levels, this luxuriously rich, gentle formula is safe for sensitive skin. It was designed to be comforting and to restore youthful hydration to dry skin immediately.

If you are good at reading ingredient lists, here they are. Water (Aqua), Squalan, Caprylic/Capric Triglyeride, Butylene Glycol, Dimethicone, Cetyle Alcohol, Stearic Acid, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil, Butyrosperum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Glycerin, Myristyle Myristate, Tocopheryl Phosphate, Acetyl Hexapeptide-8, Hydroxyproline, Disodium Lauriminodipropionate Tocopheryl Phosphates, Proline, Glycine, Hyaluronic Acid, Silanetriol, Stearyl Alcohol, Ceteth-20, Acrylates Copolymer, Hydroxyethyl Acylate/Sodium Acryloyldimenthyl Taurate Copolymer, Carbomer, Polysorbate 60, Citric Acid, Disodium EDTA, Sorbic Acid, Sodium Hydroxide, Potassium Sorbate, Caprylyl Glycol, Chlorphenesin, Ethylhexylglycerin, and Phenoxyethanol. I'm sure most of you would like a bit of interpretation.

Ultimate Hydrator provides super hydration, moisturizing, plumping Botox-like effects with TPM, Le Métier de Beauté's patented delivery system that increases potency. The hydrator helps with the early signs of aging, resulting in reduced depth of wrinkles, and firmer, supple, soft, smooth, youthful looking skin.

The product includes:
  • Argirelene: SNAP 25 - Botox-like activity, will help reduce the depth of wrinkles caused by contraction of muscles of facial expression
  • Epidermosil: silicium and small molecular weight hyaluronic acid with synergistic benefits will enhance the epidermis thickening, collagen production, density and architecture. Will improves skin hydration and firmness.
  • Shea butter, grape seed oil: emolliency for soft, smooth skin
  • Vital ET, a triple dose of vitamin E for soothing and healing the skin
Ultimate Hydrator is free of parabens and perfumes. It does have a slight smell of cucumber, a masking agent, which dissipates quickly. Some people don't smell it; I do. The product was made in the United States. I like the pump dispenser.

Ultimate Hydrator has been selling swiftly. I think that's because you can actually feel it working when you apply it. It's a pleasant feeling that reassures you that the active ingredients are working. After a few days of use, your skin should appear to have fewer expression lines and be more plump and youthful.

Yes, it's pricey. It seems like all of the really good skin care is pricey these days. That's why you need to learn as much as you can about ingredients to help you judge the potential for effectiveness. Hopefully, we have been learning together over the last few years.

You can purchase Ultimate Hydrator at Neiman Marcus. I'm sure my friend Michael Reinhardt would be happy to tell you about it and have one sent to you. You can reach him starting Thursday at (202) 966-9700, extension 2258 (he is enjoying his days off). I wouldn't recommend that you talk to anyone else about Ultimate Hydrator. It's new, and I'm not sure they have been trained.

As you know, it's still Beauty Event at Neiman Marcus. With a $125 purchase, you will receive a tote with samples. If you spend $400 with Le Métier de Beauté, you will receive a full-sized Replenishing Daily Solution worth $225. That's my absolute favorite skin care from Le Métier de Beauté.

Photo courtesy of Le Métier de Beauté

Monday, September 14, 2015

How to Make Sure You Get My E-mail Notices of New Posts

Some of you are actually getting the e-mails, but they are being put in your spam folder by your own e-mail provider. This happens when the sender sends the same e-mail to many people at the same time. You can fix this.

Just add


to your contacts. I had to do it to get my own e-mails placed into my inbox.

I have written about this before. See my post on June 8, 2014 titled  A Word about FeedBlitz, AOL, and Yahoo.

I'm sorry that many of you did not get last week's e-mail. It's a symptom of the new age of e-mail "cheaters."

Monday, September 7, 2015

Le Métier de Beauté is Pulling out All the Stops with New Products for Neiman Marcus Beauty Event

Four new Kaleidoscopes ($95 each), eight new Liquid Eye Prisms ($38) that left me drooling, five new lip pencils ($36), five new eye pencils ($36), and new skin care! All in one introduction later this week. Beauty Event at Neiman Marcus starts Thursday, September 10. I will be at the Mazza store as soon as they open. Not only will they be offering free facials, Dustin Lujan will be there with Michael and Chae. I spent two hours playing with all the new testers on Saturday and left gobsmacked.

The Kaleidoscopes have travel-related names. All have a translucent pressed powder (very much like an HD powder) on the top level, a blush immediately below, and two coordinating eye shadow shades at the bottom. See update below. The Kaleidoscope above may be called Full Stream, but it's also possible I can't read my own scrawl. I was writing on Michael's business card - around the print.

I'm sure the bus Kaleidoscope is called All Aboard. It's gorgeous - one of my two favorites. Directly below, you'll see Lift Off, the one I pre-ordered. You will note that the blush is softer than the one in All Aboard, better for my pale skin.

The fourth was in a display case, and we couldn't get it out. The photo has a yellow cast. Sorry, that was unavoidable. It's called Luxury Liner. Shown below, it appears to be one I'm going to want.

Now, to the drop-dead, I need them all Liquid Eye Prisms. It's a trend now to release liquid eye shadows - it seems like every line has them - but almost all of them are intensely colored. These aren't. They offer maximum control. They can be used as eye shadow bases or as shadows. You can build the color as you please. They are beyond gorgeous.

The new pencils are shown in the next two photos. The lip pencils have a new coral color that will be useful for many, and there's a deep red that will serve all shades of red lipstick.

The eye pencils are soft (not breakable soft) and apply like a dream. I'm smitten with the green one.

Michael drew them all on his hand. The eyes are at the top, with the lip colors below. There's also a smudge of one of the new eye shadows (drool!).

I don't know much about the new skin care yet - aside from the fact that it will hydrate and plump your skin. I'll find out more and let you know later. I do know that it costs $225 for 1.7 oz.

There will be a gift with a purchase of $400 during Beauty Event: a full-sized skin care product! My favorite too.

The two big days at Mazza will be Thursday and Saturday if you want to see Dustin there. Call and make an appointment. You know how popular he is. You can reach Michael Reinhardt at (202) 966-9700, extension 2258. I think Dustin will be with the new rep at Tysons on Friday (can't confirm).

I don't ever remember a time when Le Métier de Beauté introduced so much new color at one time, and it's all gorgeous. How, with no job, am I going to acquire all these new beauties?

Update 9/10: I got the true scoop on the Kaleidoscopes today. The third shade down is either a bronzer or highlighter, not an eye shadow. On the train and plane, the shade is a bronzer. On the Luxury Liner and helicopter, it's a highlighter.

Additional information: 1) the lip liners are a new formula that is waterproof; 2) the eye liners are a new gel formula that is water resistant. Dustin Lujan supplied all of this update information.

All photos by Best Things in Beauty, taken in store

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Where Have I Been?

Just as I started blogging again earlier this year, I scheduled a right knee replacement for July 15. In order to make my house "walker-ready," I took off from work and spent over a month doing nothing but cleaning, which really meant discarding stuff. I gave away at least five huge bags of beauty products and stashed away twice that - all to get them out of my way. I didn't want to trip over my hobby, harming my knew knee, or worse, injuring another body part.

Last week, I finished physical therapy, and I can say that my knee feels good! I'm pleased. Thursday I got an epidural to help my aging spine. So far the results have been a little disappointing. I'm taking it easy today.

I know many of you thought I had deserted you, leaving the blog behind and easing into retirement.  I've certainly considered it, but there is a part of me that won't let go. I have pictures of new Chanel to show you, and I've purchased plenty of beautiful things to feature. I'm being careful not to buy more than I can wear, which is difficult. I am such an addict. Nevertheless, I hope to start taking new photos soon and get this blog moving again.

Thank you for your loyalty and love. You are wonderful readers to wait for me for a year, and I appreciate it very much.

The photo at the top is me with my friend Dustin Lujan. Fortunately, now that he has rejoined Le Métier de Beauté as its director of color development, I'll see him often now.

I hope to be back later this week with some goodies to show you. The new Chantecaille is gorgeous!

Photo by Best Things in Beauty

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Le Métier de Beauté is Back! The Brand is Rejuvenated!

So many changes, I don't know where to start! Let's start with Dustin Lujan, who has rejoined Le Métier de Beauté as its director of color development (or some such title). Dustin has so much in store for the brand over the next few months, you will be delighted. It's like a new brand, with the best from the past and a new approach to color.

He is reintroducing himself to Le Métier de Beauté customers by visiting some of its stores. Here we are at Neiman Marcus Mazza Gallerie a few weeks ago. That's Michael hiding in the back.

Erin Lockard has also returned (yippee!), and she is working at the Houston Neiman Marcus. Add Hyton Lea, the Global Director of Skin Care, and the winning team is taking shape - once again. I'm very excited.

There are two new Kaleidoscope Eye Kits branded by Ken Downing at Neiman Marcus. Paris ($95), shown above, is the one I purchased. The pink is actually nice and soft - not as vibrant as it appears in this photo. I'm wearing all four shades of Paris in the photo above. Dustin applied my makeup.

The other, London ($95), is shown below. I see them as one for us cool types and one for warmer skin tones, but Michael promises he can make either work for anyone. Just an FYI, these Kaleidoscopes were not designed by Dustin.

They are both available now during Camp Gorgeous at Neiman Marcus, where the Le Métier de Beauté gift with purchase (below) is stunning - and available with only a $175 purchase.

Le Métier de Beauté is well aware that they lost some of you along the way during the last few years. Trust me, they are going to rope you back in. I've already jumped back on board.

To order during Camp Gorgeous, call Michael Reinhardt or one of his colleagues at (202) 966-9700, extension 2258.

I'll bring you up to date on the blog's future later. I do have more knee surgery scheduled on July 29. I'll be publishing again, but I won't be able to publish the everyday post I had been writing. I hope you will return regardless. I've missed you!

Update: There is a step-up GWP with a purchase of $400. It is a brand new bronzer-blush combination, and the color is orchid. It's sheer and beautiful.

Photos courtesy of  Le Métier de Beauté

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Rest in Peace, Bonnie Codier

Bonnie Codier was a regular here at Best Things in Beauty. If you are too, I'm sure that you saw her comments from time to time. Bonnie won a few of the weekly contests I used to do, and when I could, I sent her boxes of makeup for fun. She called me her fairy godmother. I treasured our relationship.

Bonnie was a very special person. I used the term "was" because she passed away yesterday after years of suffering with Mitochondrial Disease, a very rare, but deadly disease that robs the body's cells of energy. I took the following paragraph from her CaringBridge page to explain to you how horrible this disease is. There is no cure.

Bonnie endured dozens of surgeries and had hospital admissions as long as seven and 11 months at a time (she celebrated multiple birthdays and holidays while an inpatient). She had a pacemaker and an implanted double vascular port and required daily IV medications and fluid, oxygen therapy, and lab draws several times a week. She delayed motility problems and gastroperesis, and she had her gall bladder, spleen, thymus, and colon removed (prior to which to she had a loop ileostomy). This disease affected every organ system in her body and caused adrenal failure, polycystic ovarian disease, and kidney and autonomic problems as well. Because of her severely impaired immunity, she required IVIG therapy every three weeks to help her fight infections, which often become life-threatening. Bonnie was unable to walk for years due to profound muscle weakness and was bed-bound, but used an electric wheelchair when she needed to be transported places. She also had chronic GI bleeding and required blood transfusions every three to five weeks. Her parents were her caregivers; her mother and father are saints.

Despite her disabilities, Bonnie loved reading beauty blogs, entering contests, and writing. I was blown away when I received long, handwritten letters from her, letters I would not have had the energy to write. She was beyond special.

Always optimistic, she wrote in December, "I have a fluid collection in my abdomen that needs to be drained. It has been drained before, and it filled up again, and that will likely keep happening unless it is removed surgically. Unfortunately the pathology sample got lost last time it was drained, so the doctor wanted to try again and hopefully not lose the sample this time. I would so appreciate your prayers, they mean a lot to me and definitely make a difference! :-) Even after all the surgeries and procedures I've had, I still get a bit nervous, and contrary to the popular saying, it doesn't get easier the more I do it, I actually think it gets a little harder since I KNOW how much it hurts to have my abdomen stabbed with a huge needle (I've already been *not* enjoying daily lovenox injections, since I have to be off my coumadin for several days before and after the procedure)."

Her courage was unparalleled. Unfortunately, she developed sepsis one last time and lost her battle with this cruel disease. She asked the doctors to let her rest a few days, optimistic that rest would help her fight the infections raging in her body. They sedated her, and she rested. Her mother posted the following announcement on Facebook less than 24 hours ago, and I have cried since I saw it.

Bonnie has fought the good fight, but her Mitochondrial Disease had taken so much from her body's ability to fend off the sepsis. She passed peacefully with her family all around her earlier this afternoon. We are heartbroken, but we know she is finally free from the constant pain and is dancing with the Lord in heaven. We will be arranging a service to celebrate her and her ministry to so many.

Bonnie loved ballet. I have a mental picture of her, freed from her ailing body and returned to the one that loved to dance. I'm sure she is dancing in heaven with the angels. The pain and suffering she endured for so many years are gone, leaving her free as a butterfly. May she rest in peace.

I send my deep and heartfelt sympathy to her family - and to the many friends she made at CaringBridge, among her medical teams, on the Internet, and locally in her home state. Bonnie was a very special person.

Photos courtesy of her friends on her Facebook page

Monday, January 12, 2015

Golden Globes Fashion

I felt compelled to write a short review of last night's Golden Globes fashion scene. It had its usual hits and misses, and there's no way I can cover them all. I'll show you the hits that made me whistle, and I'll show you a few of the misses that made me wonder how a stylist could have been involved.

Amal Clooney (above) has impeccable taste - and a finely tuned sense of what's appropriate when your husband is receiving the highest honor of the night. She looked beautiful in her Dior Haute Couture, but by choosing black, she left the spotlight to him. The gloves? I could take or leave them, but I do admire her intelligent choice. On a night when you have to shake hands with many people, why not protect your health with gloves?

Emma Stone looked great in Lanvin and was one of the few women who opted for trousers. The contrast between the jeweled top and black pants by Lanvin was stunning.

Could Naomi Watts have looked any better? Her Gucci gown was beautiful (who says blondes can't wear yellow?), but that diamond snake necklace was the perfect complement.

Dakota Johnson in Chanel Haute Couture was drop-dead gorgeous. The gown spoke for itself. No snazzy jewelry was required.

Allison Williams radiated beauty in her Armani Privé gown. Red was hot last night, and she wore it best, I think.

I loved Lupita Nyong'o's Giambattista Vallie gown! I would wear that in a heartbeat. She was glorious.

Selma Hayek, wearing Alexander McQueen, was elegant. It's too bad they paired with with a rather drunken partner to present an award. She was very gracious.

Julianne Moore dazzled in her Givenchy Couture. The gradations in color and texture of her gown were stunning.

Plunging necklines were all the rage. Some were beautiful - mostly on smaller women. I loved Sienna Miller's look by Miu Miu. On the other hand, Jennifer Lopez looked like she was wearing a custom-cut shower curtain. The boning sticking into her breast was not attractive, and she must have been wearing a truckload of Hollywood Fashion Tape.

Her Golden Globes have been overexposed. Time to change up your look, JLo.

Kiera Knightly looked hideous in Chanel! The Victorian look was out of place.

It's hard to dress up Lena Dunham. I don't recall seeing her look good at any awards show. Zac Posen tried, but turned her into a blimp in the process.

Another miss was Claire Danes in Valentino. Fussy and busy, her gown detracted from her beautiful face.

There were many other celebrities whose looks were stunning, many who were just so-so, and too many misses. I can't show them all; it would take all day. So, feel free to add your own reviews in the comments. Who do you think looked great, and who should have changed before they left home?

Photos courtesy of WWD