Author Archives: carriesternkleiner

Drew Barrymore’s Flower Strikes Again

FLOWER Transforming Touch Powder-To-Crème Blush in Tickled PinkDrew Barrymore’s Flower beauty has launched new blush that rocked my world. See, when it comes to makeup, I’m definitely a blush girl — though lashes are starting to come in a close second, but I’ll get to that in a second. A flush on my cheeks makes me feel more awake, and well, more pretty, less frumpy. I kind of went bananas when I first tried Flower Transforming Touch Powder-To-Crème Blush, $13 (available in Walmart stores nationwide and coming to soon, score!). The first of its kind, this blush transforms from a powder to a silky cream as you blend it into the apples of your cheeks. And it’s not that chalky, mousse-y texture either. It’s a smooth cream that disappears into your skin leaving a natural flush. Love it.  (more…)

Giveaway Alert: Holiday Deals Live On with Motorola and The Drybar

After all the sales and deals have vanished from the web, fear not! We have an amazing giveaway (and what’s better than FREE?). Enter to win a custom-designed-by-you Motorola Moto X mobile phone and The Drybar Smooth Talker Gift Set (A $600 value). Here’s what you get:

moto_x_cabernetA Motorola Moto X: The gorgeous Moto X is a beauty-girl’s dream phone. We will send the lucky reader a code to design your very own. Choose the back cover (from 26 shades including sleek leather or bamboo wood), the metallic trim on the front, and even a special engraving on the back. I, personally, love the merlot shade to match my signature winter lipstick-of-the-moment. The Moto X is available on ATT, Verizon and T-Mobile.

dry_bar_smooth_talkerA Drybar Smooth Talker Gift Set: When it comes to getting the hair you want, dry bar has it down. With the Drybar Smooth Talker Gift Set, you can use all these products and tools to get your perfect blowout. The set includes: Sake Bomb Nourishing Shampoo, Sake Bomb Hydrating Conditioner, Hot Toddy Heat Protector and Frizz Fighter, Cream Soda Smoothing Cream, 100 Proof Treatment Oil, Money Maker Flexible Hold Hairspray, Lemon Drop Daily Detangler, Hold Me Hair Clips, Buttercup Blow Dryer, Full Pint Round Brush, and the Smooth Operator Flat Iron.

Comment on this post by Friday, December 5th at midnight for a chance to win. U.S. only.


Black Friday and Cyber Monday Beauty Bargain Bonanza

Get ready! This is our biggest collection of Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals ever. What beauty products are you going to grab this week?


Ahava Mineral Body Lotion

Who: Ahava:

What: On Black Friday, get 35% off any order (hello, Dead Sea bath salts). Use the code BFRIDAY14. On Cyber Monday you can snatch up 35% off and get a free Ahava Triple Mineral Body Lotion using the promo code CYBRMON35.

When: November 28th – December 1st



Anthony Algae Facial Cleanser

Who: Anthony

What: Take 30% off awesome skincare for the man in your life — they will thank you.

When: November 28th – December 1st



Arcona Triad Pads

Who: Arcona

What: Arcona is offering 40% off Arcona-brand skin care purchases of $200 or more online, in stores on over the phone (check the website for exclusions).

When: November 28th – November 29th

Where:, the Arcona boutique and over the phone (877-272-6620)


Here’s How Drybar Can Make Your At-Home Blowdry Look Straight-From-The-Salon Good

Gold Mine - DrybarThe second half of my pregnancy, I completely embraced the weekly blowout as I shuffled up to my local Drybar to get my locks tamed. It made me feel put together and human. Alas, baby Bea arrived and my hour of “me time” went right out the door — but that doesn’t mean my pretty hair did. See, Bea loves the sound of the hair dryer. And she sleeps when she hears the sound of the hairdryer. So now mamma does her hair at home.

Luckily, the geniuses behind Drybar sell the products they use on your hair. Total game changer. And they keep adding more awesome goods to the mix. Now my at-home hair drying actually looks professional — quite a feat with a newborn and two other kids. Here’s how:

First, I apply their newest leave-in conditioner, Drybar Gold Mine Shimmering Leave-in Conditioner, $29 (see above) to the lower half of my locks. Not only does this soften my hair and smooth frizz, it has flecks of gold shimmer that reflects light, making my hair look shiny. Though my hands are covered in sparkles after (beware if you’re wearing summer whites), it totally disappears in your hair.

SouthernBelleNext, with almost dry hair, I apply Drybar Southern Belle Volumizing Mousse, $25, about golf-sized ball, to my roots. I’ve found this is the secret to keeping my hair from looking frumpy (it falls flat in like five seconds without it).

MoneyMakerAfter drying (with a round brush if I have the energy or a paddle brush if I don’t), I give the end results a spritz with a flexible hold hair spray, like Drybar MoneyMaker Flexible Hold Hairspray, $25, to keep it looking polished.

Finally I pray I there’s five minutes to enjoy my hair before I sweep it up in a messy top knot.

Who Knew Black Lipstick Could Be So Gorgeous?

IFP's 23nd Annual Gotham Independent Film Awards - Red CarpetWhen I spied the beautiful makeup on Lupita Nyong’O from last week’s Gotham Independent Film Awards, I was totally smitten. She’s known for wearing fun, bold lipstick shades, and this jet-black lipstick with a touch of red gloss in the center is super unique and über glam. I went straight to the source, celebrity makeup artist Nick Barose, who created the pretty look, for a how-to. He explained, “sheer black lipstick (not too thick, too opaque or too matte), with a hint of sheen can look feminine and glamorous in a silent-film-star kinda way.” And it’s good for all skin tones, he said. “For dark skin tones, a true black like the currently sold-out MAC Lipstick in Hautecore, $15 (the one he used on Nyong’O), looks great because it contrast but won’t look too severe,” he explained. “For lighter skin, you might want more of a black cherry color with a hint of a red-plummy tone so the black wont look too inky against lighter skin.” He recommends Clinique Almost Lipstick in Black Honey, $15 or try Lipstick Queen Black Tie Optional Shine, $22 for an ultra-translucent, elegant gloss.

Would you wear black lipstick?

image: via

Reader Beauty Q: What’s The Fix For My Hair That’s Being Wrecked By Hard Water?

bumble-and-bumble-sunday-shampooQuestion: “I just moved to a new town and the water is H-A-R-D. It’s really messing-up my usually easy hair. What can I do?” — Stephanie

Answer: Hard water is tough on hair because it causes a mineral build-up that can weigh down locks and make hair really difficult to moisturize. And just all-around frizzy. The solution is simple: remove the minerals. You can do this a few ways, and they’re all really easy. Yay! Here are your options:

Option 1 – Shampoo it: Start using a clarifying or chleating shampoo like Bumble and Bumble Sunday Shampoo, $23 (above) or Suave Daily Clarifying Shampoo, $1. Just keep in mind that these are very drying, so start by using them once a week to see if that helps. Also pair this shampoo with a deep conditioner to restore loss moisture. This is the low-maintenance solution to getting your hair back in good form.

aquasana-shower-filterOption 2 – Filter it: Buy a shower-head filter like the Aquasana Shower Filter, $55 (we wrote about it here) to remove minerals before they actually have the chance to do damage on your locks. Relatively inexpensive and super-easy to install (I did it myself in like five minutes), this is going to keep your hair in the best shape and you won’t have to give up your favorite cleansers and conditioners.

heinz-apple-cider-vinegarOption 3 – Rinse it: Use an apple cider vinegar rinse once a week followed by a deep conditioner on the ends. And when I say rinse, I mean, literally, mix two cups of distilled water with two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar, like Heinz Apple Cider Vinegar, $2 and pour it over your locks, swish it around a little bit, then rinse it out. The vinegar removes this mineral buildup and also makes hair really shiny. This, like a clarifying shampoo, is very drying, but also a cheap solution to removing the pesky minerals that your hair doesn’t like.

Do you have hard-water problems?

Problem Solver of the Week: Epsom Salt

dr-teals-relax-epsom-saltThe Product: Dr. Teal’s Epsom Salt Soaking Solution, $5

Why: As a beauty editor, I try everything — from feather eyelash falsies to the latest tricked-out at-home facial scrubbing brush. But once in a while, I realize I haven’t ever actually tested a tried and true beauty staple. This time, it’s Epsom salt. I still have two more months left of this pregnancy, but the weight of my big belly is a literal pain in my neck — and back, and legs and feet. Over the weekend, my sister-in-law suggested I take a long bath with Epsom salt and lavender oil. I knew she was on to something right away — even though I’ve never done it, this is exactly what I would recommend to you guys. So I happily dumped two heaping cups of Epsom salt and a few drops of oil into her extra-large soaking tub (you can make your own essential oil mix like I did and use plain Epson Salt or buy a pre-infused blend like the Dr. Teal’s above). The sweet scent of the oil immediately relaxed me, and when I got out twenty minutes later, I felt a huge relief in my no-longer-sore bod. I am a total convert. Knowing something so simple can make my treasured baths even better is just awesome. So how, exactly does this magic salt work? Well, first, it’s not actually a salt. It’s named for Epsom, the spa town in England known for its healing mineral springs. Made of the compound magnesium sulfate, which many believe can be absorbed into your body through the skin, Epsom salt is known to regulate the activity of enzymes, reduce inflammation and help muscle and nerve function. I just know that it made my bath super relaxing and I felt less soreness, so I’m sold.

For more cool bath ideas, check out our DIY Bath Tea How-To.

Cyber Monday Beauty Deals That Will Blow Your Mind

Happy Thanksgiving! Now get shopping!

birchbox-rebecca-taylor-cyber-mondayWho: Birchbox

What: Spend at least $55 on all full-sized products and receive an exclusive Birchbox + Rebecca Taylor makeup pouch. Use code REBECCAGIFT.

When: Beginning December 2nd


e.l.f-cyber-mondayWho: e.l.f.

What: Get 50% with a minimum purchase of $30 on the website.

When: December 1st – December 3rd


drbrandt-bbcream-cyber-mondayWho: Dr. Brandt

What: Enjoy 40% off eye cream and also receive a full-size BB or CC cream with any purchase over $150.

When: December 1 at noon – December 2nd at midnight EST


butter-london-cyber-mondayWho: Butter LONDON

What: Launching Black Friday, Butter London’s Fashion Size Duo combines the perfect lacquer pair of Slapper and Knackered, to give your holiday look the sparkle and pop it needs for only $10. Also, get 20% off of all products and  50% off of last-call products using the code CYBER13.

When: November 29th – December 2nd


bobbi-brown-extreme-party-mascara-cyber-mondayWho: Bobbi Brown Cosmetics

What: Kick off black Friday with a mini Long Wear Makeup Remover and a full-sized Extreme Party Mascara with any order.

When: November 29th


miss-jessie's-cyber-mondayWho: Miss Jessie’s

What: Scoop up 40% off ALL items on the website

When: Now while supplies last


Happy Black Friday/Cyber Monday, etc., etc.

Holiday Makeup Perfection

em-holiday-life-new-years-countdown-editionIt’s not even Thanksgiving and the holiday party invitations have started to roll in — cue my boundless excitement for the upcoming season! Being very pregnant right now, I’m not so worried about what to wear — I have one silk dress and that’s plenty. I’m most fired up about what hair and makeup looks I’ll sport. My go-to makeup for the season will be Michelle Phan’s new and gorgeous makeup line EM. Phan combines her amazing tutorials that we’ve mentioned before here, with her own line of beautifully curated and high-quality makeup. The EM Life Palette, Holiday Life: New Year’s Countdown Edition, $29 (above) is the perfect party mix. You get everything you need for a complete party-ready look: six gorgeous shadows, a blush and two lip colors. I love the dramatic mix of gold, plum and smokey brown shades with my favorite-of-the-season deep wine lip. And the best part is her easy step-by-step video how-to on the EM website that shows you exactly how to use the products to get a sultry and dramatic makeup look. Party on!

Are you more experimental more with your holiday makeup or do you like to keep it simple?

Do-Good Beauty

This time of year the beauty aisles are teeming with fabulous new product launches that give back to the community and support research for causes that touch us all. Here are a few amazing products we love — we know you’ll love them too.

Sonia_Kashuk_Proudly Pink_Five-Piece_Purse_Brush_SetSonia Kashuk Proudly Pink Five-Piece Purse Brush Set, $16

Sonia Kashuk, breast cancer survivor and beauty entrepreneur and Target have partnered with the Breast Cancer Research Fund for the seventh year in a row to create an exclusive new and repackaged Proudly Pink Five-Piece Purser Brush Set to raise money in support of the fight against breast cancer. Not only are Sonia Kashuk brushes my numero uno, these are adorable and perfect to stash in your gym bag.

sandy_hook_green_OPIOPI Nail Lacquer in Sandy Hook Green, $26

OPI has partnered with Sandy Hook Promise to launch a new, limited-edition nail color, Sandy Hook Green. Featuring the bright, bold green of the Sandy Hook Elementary school colors, it’s an amazing way to show support for the community and honor the 20 children and 6 educators who lost their lives. Your donation will help provide immediate and long-term aid to families of Sandy Hook and support the continuing effort of advocating for change by promoting an open dialogue about mental health, school safety, family, community and gun safety and responsibility. Wearing this color send a powerful message, and we love that.

laura_mercier_lip_glace_kiss_of_hopeLaura Mercier Lip Glacé in Kiss of Hope, $24

September was Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month, but you can still support the cause by stocking up on Laura Mercier’s Limited Edition Lip Glacé in Kiss of Hope. 100% of the profits will go to Laura Mercier Ovarian Cancer Fund with the mission of educating women about the disease, supporting those who were undergoing treatment, and funding research for a cure. This high-shine, perfectly pigmented lipgloss with rich, long-lasting color creates the appearance of fuller lips. Who doesn’t want that? And the shimmering peachy-pink shade enhances any skin tone so it’s also a perfect gift.