I come to you today with a list of my favorite things. Like Julie Andrews so dearly sung out, “when I’m feeling sad, I simply remember my favorite things… and then I don’t feel so bad”; of course, I don’t dream of cream colored ponies or schnitzel with noodles, but I can appreciate brown packages tied up in strings, specially those delivered by the brown package company *laughs secretly*.
So let’s jump in, ‘cos the list is sorta long.
I was on the hunt for a cream cleanser for my sensitive skin, and quite honestly, because I have been somewhat infatuated with British beauty gurus that claim cream cleansers are the next best thing. These types of cleansers have a different texture and method of application in that you apply them onto dry skin and emulsify them with a light rub or with warm water. They are not soapy (which we all know can be a bad pairing with dry skin) and clean your face and makeup away very gently. So, at the recommendation of one of my favorite gurus, Caroline Hirons, I coughed up the $$ for an Elemis Pro-Radiance Cream Cleanser. Okay, let’s just start with the scent….neroli, bargamont and cedarwood- need I say more. This cream cleanser is really the next generation of cleansers; it emulsifies with just a couple of rubs and removes makeup like a dream. It comes with a washcloth that you wet with warm water to remove the product from your skin. I use it in the morning, at night, whenever! and it is never drying. The price is worth it because it also comes in a big tub (6.8fl oz). I L-O-V-E it.
Now, for those times that I can’t be bothered with a long cleansing routine, and even to remove any excess makeup or build up, I have been using the oh-so-famous micellar water from Simple. This cleansing agent has been famous and available to French women and men for ages, and again, another product that European beauty gurus rave about (are you seeing the trend here?). What I like about it is that is very straight forward: you put it on a cotton pad (you know, one of those flat square or oval ones designed for makeup removal) and rub it all over your face. I have used it to remove waterproof mascara by placing the cotton pad on my eyes and letting it rest for a couple of seconds. Voila! it removes everything, no raccoon eyes ever again. I do need to follow it with a moisturizer because it can be a little bit drying, but not enough to deter me from using it.
Right before my birthday in August, my mom gifted me a line of organic face creams called Acure. Out of the three products she gave me, which were the daily moisturizer, eye and night cream, I have been loving the night cream. This night cream is fantastic; after washing my face, I apply a generous amount of this cream all over my face and neck. It glides on smoothly onto my skin, leaving it hydrated. It does have a very strong smell, that I can only describe as the smell of freshly cut grass; but I don’t mind it at all. It contains argan stem cells, chlorella growth factor and argan oil. I have been using it steadily for 3 months and have seen an improvement in my skin’s elasticity. In the mornings, my cheeks look plumped with a beautiful radiance!
You know about this product because I wrote about it on my very first post. It has been now more than a month since I bought it and I really like it. I am talking about the Tatcha Classic Rice Enzyme Powder. I’ve definitely gotten the hang of it: I wet my hands and face, pour some of the product on my fingers and scrub away until the foam has dissipated, which is typically a couple of seconds after applying it on my face. Because of my sensitive skin, I use it once a week only. I does a great job at remove dead skin cells, build up and that general roughness you can feel on your skin. It is drying though, I quickly need to slather some moisture back into my face after using it. My advice: never use it before exposure to the sun i.e. going to the beach, jogging outside, etc. You will thank me.
My daughter got me hooked sometime ago into the Smith’s Rosebud Salve. I use primarily for my very chapped and dry lips and I can tell you: This salve is life. Yeah, I just dropped a slangerism on you. But it is, though. I have suffered from chapped lips all my life to the point where wearing very bright colored lipsticks was never sexy… you know, who wants to kiss a red lip dame with chunks of skin peeling off like a snake?. I started using this salve earlier in the year and it has completely transformed my lips. They are now so luscious, LOL. I am laughing typing this because my kid will be embarrassed of my adjective selection. Okay, my lips are now hydrated, smooth and soft. I’ve also used the salve on my nail cuticles because they tend to be so dry, I can pick the skin and pull it off. For a meager $6 tin, I can honestly say this has been one of the best finds of the year for me, which is not comforting since the Smith’s company has been making these since 1892 (where have I been?).
This next find is another hit of the year. I am talking about the Distillery General artisan perfume in Smokewood. I am going to try to describe the scent without giving you the actual notes: when I wear this, I feel fresh but mysterious. Huh? You know, it has a combination of scents that bring the freshness of soap with the muskiness of wood. The notes are amber, leather, sandalwood, vanilla, violet and green melon. Since this is a distilled perfume, the application is very interesting, at least for me. It comes in a glass container with an atomizer, but when you spray it on your skin, it becomes tacky for a couple of seconds. I don’t know if this is typical of distilled perfumes, but I feel like the scent wears off much better than commercially made fragrances. This is a great scent for the summer going into fall, but I wouldn’t recommend it for winter unless you are feeling blue and need a picker-upper with a citrus scent. Me, I can wear it all year long since it is always summer in Miami.
I am a coffee drinker, hands down. However, there is something so tempting as to having a cup-of-tea when the weather starts to change. A nice little mug with warming hot tea and biscuits. Wow, who am I? Well, I was introduced by my mom to the Mountain Rose Herbs Vita Blend Tea a week or two ago and I already know this is going to be one of my most favorite teas ever. For número uno, this is a certified organic and kosher blend tea, with a company LEED certified, that supports fair trade and wholesome goods. Gotta love supporting business that have sustainable practices. For número dos, the quality of the product is outstanding. This particular tea is used as boost of vitality, to support well being. The smell and taste of Hibiscus brings fond childhood memories for me; maybe that is the primary reason why I like it so much. The blend also contains organic peppermint leaf, lemongrass, red clover, nettle leaf (whatever that is), alfalfa leaf, oatstraw, and horsetail. I drink it without sweeteners, in the morning, afternoon and night. It does not contain caffeine, so it’s perfect for before bed as well.
Keeping up with the tea trend, I got my hands on this lovely tea infuser from Bohemian Republic in the shape of a kettle! There is really not much to say about it other than you open the kettle, pour your favorite tea, cover and drop inside of your steaming cup of water. It comes with a cute string that you can leave hanging on the side of your cup. Perfect for my new hobby, tea drinking.
It’s candle season, let’s face it. With the weather and beautiful red lit skies at dusk, I love lighting up candles all around my house. However, I am very particular about the candles I lit. While I know soy is better than regular wax, it is so hard for me to find a good smelling soy candle that doesn’t cost $50 bucks. I was excited when Target brought out their fall home collection because they came out with a sandalwood and spiced honey soy candle. This smells like a cabin in the woods, facing a beautiful dark blue lake. A good smelling candle is one of those things that can change your attitude about coming and being home. This candle comes in a macerated copper tin, which is perfect for my home decor. The quality is great too; I have been burning non-stop every night for a week and it has barely gone down. I would totally recommend if you are into musk, wood, spiced scents. A must have.
I have other things I have been loving for personal care, hair, jewelry and fashion, but I will post those in the next couple of days.
So now that you’ve seen some of mine, what are your favorite things? Leave a comment down below! I would love to know your fall staples and those products you cannot live without or if you have tried any of the products mentioned on this post.
Until the next one~
The Minimal Sisters.