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My Schwarzkopf Professional OSIS+ Trifecta: Glamour Queen, Magic Finish & Flatliner Sleek

Not really sure why but I usually don’t take risks when it comes to my hair and the way I style it. For years I had my straight hair all one length without even any layers (I know…pathetic right?). The year 2013 has been a year of drastic change and transformation for me and I thought it was time for a little change in my appearance as well. After much deliberation in my hairdresser’s chair, she convinced me to get bangs – and I’m absolutely loving them. There are three products my hairdresser Sharon used in my hair from Schwarzkopf Professional OSIS, which I now have as part of my daily hair arsenal to help me achieve a sleek full body, frizz free look.

 OSIS+ Magic Finish Anti-Frizz Shine Serum

Schwarzkopf Osis Magic Finish

A serum is an absolute must for my hair and I like to use it both when it’s wet prior to blow drying and post blow dry during styling. This means I have to be careful not to use one that is going to weight down my hair too much. Not only does this serum do a superb job at controlling my arch nemesis (aka frizz), due to it’s formulation of silicone agents and moisturizing glycerine, it also smooths my hair and leaves it uber silky.

How To Use It: Apply a dime-size amount to hair then style as usual

OSIS+ Flatliner Sleek Iron Spray

Schwarzkopf Osis Flatliner Sleek

My hairdresser absolutely swears by this product and now I do too! The OSIS+ Flatliner iron serum spray is an essential styling spray for straight hair to protect tresses against thermal styling damage while also taming annoying flyaways and frizz. The spray has a unique mix of ingredients which includes wheat proteins and hydrolyzed silk that protects hair from heat up to 200 degrees and leaves my hair with an unbelievable shine. Hands down my favourite product so far out of all the OSIS+ styling products I’ve tried to date. It can be used on both wet and dry hair but I usually only apply it prior to flat ironing my hair.

How To Use It: Spray onto wet hair and then dry hair thoroughly. I like a very sleek look so I use a paddle brush to dry my hair. If you have extremely thick hair, spray again on dry hair and straighten immediately.

OSIS+ Glamour Queen Hairspray

Schwarzkopf OSIS Glamour Queen

Until recently, I haven’t used hairspray a lot in my hair unless I needed drastic hold for an updo. I just never liked the way hairspray left my hair feeling afterwards, I was left with little to no movement and it sometimes caused breakage if it wasn’t washed out quickly enough. The Glamour Queen H20 Free Volumizing Spray is actually pleasant to use and I have been using it a lot to give my bangs a light hold. This fast drying hairspray doesn’t stick to the hair like other holding products and leaves hair looking clean, flexible and natural even when it’s applied heavily.  Added benefit: when Glamour Queen is sprayed directly onto the roots it creates extra volume.

How To Use It: Spray onto dry hair from approximately 30 cm away using very short bursts. Finish and fix your style as usual.

You can find these products at a Schwarzkopf Professional OSIS+ salon near you.

Sculpt & Shape With Schwarzkopf Professional OSIS+ Thrill Fibre Gum

Schwarzkopf Osis+ Productsjpg

Since becoming a Brand Ambassador for Schwarzkopf Professional Osis+ I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to get my hands the brand’s top selling products to test out both at home and with my hairstylist. The OSIS+ line is known globally amongst hairdressers and beauty junkies alike as the “go-to”styling products for those who like to bring creativity to their style and create inspirational hair.

Schwarzkopf Professional OSIS ThrillIf you have short or medium length hair and love to add definition, texture and separation to your tresses, than this is the product for you. During the styling process or after blow-drying, the right products to personalize your look are vital. OSIS+ Thrill Fibre Gum is a heavenly scented moulding paste, which features “Mega Elastic Fibre” technology and is perfect for those who want to sculpt sections of their hair or to create separation and definition, with a strong hold that will keep their look in place. Although Thrill ranks as a 3 on the line’s control level scale (which is the highest), it still allows for natural movement and gives hair a glossy shine.

HOW TO USE IT: Apply a small amount of the gum onto the palm of your hands and rub them together. Use your fingertips to style, manipulate and add texture as you wish. *Can be applied to both damp and dry hair.

OSIS+ Thrill Fibre Gum is best used to define choppy bob styles, sculpt pixie/short cuts or to add texture to short-medium length hair and can be found at a Schwarzkopf Professional Salon near you for $23.50 Canadian.

You may also want to check out my reviews on Schwarzkopf OSIS+ Curl Me Soft Velvet Curl Cream, Refresh Dust and Dust It Mattifying Powder.

Refresh Dust | Schwarzkopf Professional OSIS+ Miracle Bodyfying Dry Shampoo

Schwarzkopf OSIS+ Refresh Dust

Let’s be real, dry shampoo products are nothing new in the hair and beauty industry, they have been on the market for a few years now, but I’ve never really been inclined to try it out before. To be honest, I think it was simply because I never believed it was a product that worked for black hair. Us black women are usually trying to add moisture to our overly dry hair, instead of removing oils. Earlier this week I began to do some online trolling to see what my “community” had to say about dry shampoo in general and how it fares with black hair – Not going to lie, I was pleasantly surprised and quickly got my paws on the Schwarzkopf Professional OSIS+ Refresh Dust Bodyfying Dry Shampoo to see its affects on my hair.

Schwarzkopf OSIS+ Refresh Dust

This sprayable powder turns out to be great on all types of hair, including mine, and with it’s separating and lifting factor, limp/greasy hair becomes a thing of the past and it leaves hair smelling remarkably clean. The Refresh Dust works really well on freshly washed tresses, making it significantly easier to style, but I LOVE the fact that it can extend your blow-out a few extra days and helps hair stay fresher, longer.

WHY IT WORKS: The formula contains something called Oryza Sativa Starch which is a super ingredient that derives from rice that has incredible absorbing properties. If you happen to have super oily hair, you’ll  be so thrilled with the results you will consider giving me your first born child. *Voted Best Dry Shampoo by the 2013  Salon Magazine Readers Choice Awards

Schwarzkopf OSIS+ Refresh Dust

HOW TO USE IT: Separate the hair into sections and spray the product directly onto the roots. I recommend that you do this is short bursts as the spray is pretty powerful. Let the roots dry for approximately 2 minutes. Once it’s dry, brush your hair in different directions in order to remove all of the residue. Then style as normal.

This product retails for roughly $23.50 and can be purchased at a Schwarzkopf Professional Salon near you!

Canada’s Best Beauty Boxes Revealed

Canda's Top Beauty Boxes

The latest craze in the beauty industry has to be beauty boxes, which are customized delivered packages of deluxe makeup and skincare products for a set monthly price, which has been all the rage in the U.S. for quite some time now, but until only recently has it been gaining traction north of the border. Although we do not currently have cult beauty fave Birch Box here in Canada (who has recently expanded to the UK, Spain and France) there are still some pretty cool options for monthly beauty boxes for us Canucks. This is hands-down the optimal way for beauty product addicts to be able to try the latest and most popular products on the market in a cost effective way. Conversely, it’s a great way for beauty novices’, such as myself, to get to test out products without having to make the commitment of having to purchase the full sized products. To help make your life easier and a bit more “beautiful”, I’ve rounded up the best beauty boxes in Canada, that you may be interested in subscribing to…

1) Glossybox

Glossybox likes to think of themselves as a  globally inspired beauty box company, with exclusive access to beauty brands from across the world. If you choose to subscribe to Glossybox, you can expect to receive five samples each month (all high end drug store beauty brands). Lucky for members, the company is very transparent about what’s going to be placed in their boxes every month on their website and they always provide a good mix between makeup and skincare products. I love the fact that they have beauty box collaborations or themes such as January 2013’s “Man Repeller” (one of the top fashion blogs online) box.

Glossy Box

2) Top Box

Ummm, Top Box is pretty damn awesome if you ask me, and for just $12/mth you can receive four deluxe beauty brands that have heavy cult followings; Stila, Clinique, Skinceuticals and Benefit. To help the company narrow down what exactly they should send to you, subscribers can fill out a beauty profile – however it is not required or necessary. Also, they send out a pretty good mix of skincare and makeup each month. For those who are more into makeup than skincare – this is the optimal choice for you. The one downfall – and yes, there is a slight downfall – there is a wait list for subscriptions, however it is only 30 days.

Top Box Beauty Box

3) Glymm

In between the price of Glossybox and Top Box’s subscription charges, you will find Glymm for about $15/mth. For that price, beauty feens will get four to five luxury beauty brand samples from companies like; Cargo, Caudalie, Anastasia and Butter London. Seriously, I would be more than “A-OK” with just receiving a box full of Caudalie products every month. Another company with a beauty profile to be filled out – for optimal satisfaction with the monthly deliveries. For those of you who are “points whores” (love collecting Sephora beauty points or airmiles), will also love Glymm as they give you the opportunity to fill out surveys on the samples you get each month, which earns you points that go toward their online shop – double score! There is nothing better to be getting to try samples for next to nothing and then to be able to buy the full sized product at a discounted price. And if that’s not enough, Glymm also has a program specifically for men; Glymm Man. The downfall, if you are looking for a fair share of makeup, this is the wrong choice for you and most of the beauty products are anti-aging.

Glymm Beauty Box

4) Loose Button’s Luxe Box

Luxe Box Is the creme de la creme of beauty boxes – I must say it’s quite posh in the world of sample product boxes in Canada. They offer seven to eight samples monthly from premium/luxury brands such as Prada and Valentino. In addition to high end brands, each box is monogrammed with the subscriber’s initials (very dope) and they also receive free shipping at the Luxe Boutique, access to private events, product launches, beauty tutorials and tips. Membership costs are the most cost effective due to the fact that memberships are only charged every three ($26), six or twelve months – but you must commit to a minimum of three months. I love the fact that members can also prick and reserve products so that they appear in their next box.

Luxe Box

Are you currently subscribing to any monthly beauty boxes? If so, which one(s)…

XO,

S

Ultrasonic Chono Facials | Fresh Touch Medi Day Spa

“Sharing is Caring” is probably one of the first rules I learned in nursery school and I’ve reminded myself of this old adage after recently adding ultrasonic facials into my pre-wedding beauty routine. When it comes to treatments, I have to be honest, I have been a bit of a Spa Snob in the past but I have been receiving emails from readers asking about day spas and treatments at locations outside of the downtown (Toronto) core, which couldn’t have been more timely as someone recently introduced me to the life changing Ultrasonic Chrono Facial at Fresh Touch Medi Spa located 30 minutes east of the city in Pickering.

Since October, I have had three Ultrasonic treatments and it has now become my latest beauty obsesh and would highly recommend it to any woman, or man, who is looking for superior deep cleaning of their pores and an improved, even skin tone. I have seen dramatic improvements in my skin and am now confident that I will achieve the clearest skin possible by the time my Spring wedding rolls around. After having facials at well known spas around the city, I think this facial is probably one of the best and comprehensive I have had to date.

If I have yet to entice you to try this miracle treatment, here is what you will experience during your 75-90 minute session…

  • Deep cleansing, exfoliating and steam. The facialist will use the ultrasonic tool during the steaming process which will help further exfoliate and remove dead skin. Moreover, it softens and emolifies the sebum for easy removal
  • Next, a vacuum machine (not used by many facialists around the city) is used for deep cleaning when pores are already opened. It removes a lot of surface dirt and works wonders for circulation. Mature clients really love it’s benefits!
  • Extractions – the not so pleasant part of the facial but of course necessary. It is extremely important to remove bacteria, black and white heads from the pores to avoid future breakouts
  • The High Frequency Zapper is used next to attack zits using oxidized electricity and also kills bacteria pathogens. The facialist informed me that its great for newly formed pimples/zits as it basically stops them dead in their tracks and speeds up the healing process. She was not joking because the few I had on my face had completely dried up within 24 hours.
  • A little bit more steam while you enjoy an amazing neck massage. This step is what I like to refer to as “Cloud Nine”
  • If you suffer from acne flare-ups like I do, then there will be some additional manual extractions and lancet to remove the head of blackheads to avoid unnecessary scaring
  • Based on your skin type, a signature mask is then applied using specialized minerals and oil blend,s while receiving an arm and hand massage

I promise you, you will not be disappointed with the results. Of course, like any other beauty treatment out there, frequency and consistency will provide the best results. Depending on skin issues, it is ideal to have facials every 4-6 weeks…which I have agreed to do as part of my wedding beauty regime. *Tip: Make sure to book your facial with seasoned aesthetican Marilyn Nickerson!

If you are interested in giving the Ultrasonic Chono Facial a try in order to look refreshed and bright for the holidays, Fresh Touch Medi Spa is currently offering a special price from December 12-16th of only $79. For more information or to book an appointment, please visit their website www.freshtouchmedispa.com

Fresh Touch Medi Spa 1725 Kingston Road Unit #20. Pickering, ON (905) 619-8822

Business Hours:

Monday: CLOSED

Tuesday: 10am-7pm

Wednesday-Friday: 10am-8pm

Saturday-Sunday: 9am-5pm

XO,

S

Korres | Wild Rose Collection Skin Care

If you are looking for skin care products that will diminish the appearance of fine lines and skin discolorations, this line may be for you. I am still praising the Sephora consultant that recommended it to me two months ago…I swear I now owe this lady my first born child! The reason why this line is so effective is due to the wild rose oil, which is a natural source of Vitamin C, allowing for a significant improvement of even skin tones. It also forms a protective film on the skin that ends up preventing drying, which is usually the culprit of damage, while improving skin texture.

I’ve tried two products from the line, first being the Daily Brightening & Replenishing Buff Cleanser (only C$31.00 so basically a beauty bargain buy). As terrified as I am of exfoliators, with fears of them being to abrasive on my sensitive skin, I bit the bullet and hoped for the best and I am quite impressed with the results. It’s an ultra gentle brightening cleanser that exfoliates skin naturally by simply uncovering luminous even skin via a dual action process. In the past, I’ve become all to accustomed to exfoliators grainy texture disintegrating once I start rubbing the product into my face, however the cherry stone and rice grain stayed put the entire time – allowing this creamy textured exfoliator to provide the gentle but deep cleansing action it intended to do. After each use my skin is looking brighter and feeling unbelievably soft. I was completely shocked to discover that it’s also gentle enough to use every day.

Korres Wild Rose Daily Brightening & Replenishing Buff Cleanser. Available at Sephora

The product that I was super stoked to try out was the Advanced Brightening Sleeping Facial which will run you C$62.50. I mean the name alone had me wanting to try this thing immediately, no arm twisting necessary. The idea of a facial while sleeping couldn’t be any more appealing. After applying for the first time (and let me warn you, a little goes a long way) I soon realized that the name was not an oversell. It is clearly what it says it is…working overtime and overnight to affix tired and dull skin by the am.

Korres Wild Rose + Vitamin C Advanced Brightening Sleeping Facial available at Sephora

Results came way quicker than I anticipated! I started to see a difference in about 5 days. Totally blown away with how light the texture is with it’s ability to leave my skin supple, soft and smooth – and without leaving my pillow and face an oily mess. Best part for sure is the heavenly smell, which my fiancee comments on every single night after I get ready for bed.

Korres products can be found at Sephora locations across North America and select Shoppers Drug Mart locations (in Canada). For more information on this Greek manufacturer of highly concentrated natural active ingredients for hair, body and face care products, check out their websites www.korres.com and www.korres.ca

If you have tried any of the above products or anything else from their extensive product line, I would love to hear your thoughts…

XO,

S

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