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christene carr

Before getting pregnant with Phoebe, I never gave much thought to natural beauty products. Sure, I’ve reviewed a ton over the course of the years, but I’ve never fully committed to a natural routine. But while pregnant, I had to give a lot more consideration to the things I used on my skin….So the topic of “natural” came up quite a bit.

With Earth Day upon us, it seems like an appropriate time to re-start the conversation of natural/green beauty and share a few tips from ThisThatBeauty Girls, some of my beauty blogging friends and Neutrogena Naturals.

I will admit I’m sort of hitching my wagon to the whole Earth Day theme in an effort to provide some insightful content to my readers, but with Neutrogena Naturals — every single day of the year is Earth Day…so I’m really happy to highlight their products along with some really practical Green Beauty Tips.

Maree Sye  - Earth Day Beauty Tip
Maree Sye

Think going green with your beauty has to be a big pain? Maree Sye (@alittlebitetc) has news for you:

Incorporating more green practices into your beauty routine can be easier than you think. Washing my hair every other day is not only great for keeping my hair healthy, but it helps reduce my water and electricity usage on those days.

Kristin Bell - Neutrogena Naturals
Kristin Bell

Looking for a simple DIY Green Beauty Tip? Neutrogena Naturals Ambassador, Kristen Bell, shares this:

My favorite go-to DIY beauty remedy is a homemade body scrub, which I put in a mason jar. The most common ingredients that I use are coconut oil, brown sugar, sometimes a little bit of sea salt and sometimes a little bit of honey – harvested from our friendly bees, cause we’ve got to care about the bees. Did you hear the statistic that if the bees go down, we can’t feed 90% of the world? That is a real statistic!

Lara Eurdolian
Lara Eurdolian


Want to help save the earth and get the most out of your beauty product samples? Lara Eurdolian (@prettyconnected) has a suggestion:

When you receive a sachet sample, instead of taring it open (usually there’s an indented area to make it easy on you), poke a pin size hole in it. Not only will this let you control how much product dispenses so there’s less waste, it also allows you to use the product longer.

Christene Carr - Earth Day Beauty Tip
Christene Carr

If you’ve been following ThisThatBeauty for a while, you know that Christene Carr (@christenecarr) is my right hand and amazing Editor. You might also know, from following her Instagram, Christene is the DIY Queen of Everything. And she has this green beauty tip to share:

Reuse your coffee grounds as a body exfoliant. Add a tablespoon of honey, a tablespoon of coconut oil and two tablespoons of coffee grounds. Massage slowly over your body, rinse and you’re done. A simpler option is to add a couple of tablespoons of coffee grounds to your favorite body wash, massage over body and rinse.

Moi :)

Lastly, I’ll share:

I always try to do as much as possible while in the shower and not use extra water…I bathe, wash my face and brush my teeth. I also re-use things like crazy. When I’m sent beauty products or gifts in lovely boxes, I repurpose them for makeup brush holders or pen holders.

Neutrogena Naturals Collection
Neutrogena Naturals Collection

If natural skincare matters to you, consider Neutrogena Naturals, a collection of products that have helped pioneer a new take on natural.

“Neutrogena studied nature’s bounty and specifically selected natural ingredients containing Bionutrients that work with the skin’s natural function and provide skin benefits. From these discoveries, scientists then created a new infrastructure: a scaffolding of natural ingredients with artfully selected synthetics to support the integrity of the formula – allowing the heart of Neutrogena® Naturals to be naturally derived ingredients and Bionutrients.”

The entire collection, of products for face and body, is free of sulfates, parabens, petrolatum, dyes and phthalates.

If you want to ease your way into ‘natural’, the cleansers and lip balm make for a nice starting point. I think you’ll be pleased with both the efficacy and the fresh, delightful sensory experience.

Giveaway Alert!

I’d love to hear your Green Beauty Tips. For a chance to win a Neutrogena® Naturals gift pack, leave a comment below sharing your best green beauty too. Contest ends May 1.

Disclosure:  This post was sponsored by Neutrogena. The opinions expressed are my own.

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A foundation ingredient label with ingredient names that you can actually pronounce? Let me explains. . . . .

Truthfully, when was the last time you looked at a foundation bottle and could understand and pronounce all the ingredient names? Hmmm…never, you say? Well, I am a product ingredient junkie and even I often have difficulty. Not so with GlamNatural Hydrating Foundation. The Ingredient list is impressive but that wouldn’t mean diddly squat if the product wasn’t also effective.

The ingredients in GlamNatural Hydrating Foundation are: Shea Butter, Dimethicone, Sunflower Oil, Berry Wax, Grape seed oil, Jojoba oil, Iron Oxides and Titanium dioxide; that is a whopping six ingredients plus two colors. GlamNatural foundations are formulated without water, as such they are highly concentrated and a little does go a long way. When applying this foundation it is imperative that you start with just the tiniest amount and blend out, adding more if needed. I have oily skin, so when I tested this product I didn’t use a moisturizer. I cleansed, applied a serum them applied the GlamNatural foundation.

The shade I tried, Bronze 2, was a little off for me, but it turns out that it was perfect for my girlfriend who is darker complected and has dry skin. Before I reluctantly handed it off to her, I found that it also worked if added a drop of foundation to my regular moisturizer (a quick and easy tinted moisturizer.) I got a nice glow and light coverage, which is perfect for those days when I’m feeling a little lazy but still want to look my best.

GlamNatural Hydrating Foundation comes in 6 shades. Ivory 1 and 2, Beige 1 and 2 and Bronze 1 and 2. The website does a good job of breaking down who should select what shade but the swatch colors are ridiculously off. From reading the description I think I would be a Bronze 1. Here is Bronze 2 on my hand..

ThisThatBeauty Reviews: Glam Natural Foundation Bronze 2

GlamNatural Foundations retail for $65. Visit the company’s website for more information and to discover other GlamNatural Products.


This post was written by Christene Carr

I have a few friends (three to be exact,) who claim they are too busy for “traditional makeup” [gasp]. After asking what tradition makeup is and getting pretty much the same answer across the board, I realized it’s not that they don’t like traditional makeup, they just seem to be intimidated by the steps they think it takes to get a flawless look. For them makeup should  be quick, easy and fool proof and they shouldn’t have to have steady hands or blend, buff and repeat and in order to achieve makeup perfection.

When I was introduced to Per-fekt Beauty cosmetics I immediately recommended it to these three (lazy) friends. Creator of Perfekt, Richard Anderson says  “Today’s woman doesn’t have the time to apply a concealer, then color corrector, then primer, then foundation and then powder. I created my products with her  mind.”

Per-fekt products are free of synthetic fragrances, dyes, wax, talc, mineral oils and parabens. The products are highly concentrated so you get a higher product payoff. The base of Perfekt Face and Perfekt Body products are formulated with silicones so they have a smooth finish that sits on top of the skin, evens out texture and tone. The face and body perfecting gels add immediate radiance and warmth to the skin and application is as simple as pat, smooth and go!

If you need a bit more coverage, apply the face perfecting gel then you can spot conceal. It comes in translucent and  four  other shades; luminous, radiant, rich and decadent (see swatch below). I use decadent but rich could also work for me.

Perfekt Beauty Face Perfecting Gels

My favorite product from the line is the cheek perfecting gel.  This is truly fool proof, lazy encouraging stuff.  You simply put on a smile, pat on cheeks, smooth with finger and go.  You can start with a light application and build coverage for a more dramatic look. Here I am in a completely Per-Fekt look: Skin Perfecting Gel in Decadent all over face and one layer of Cheek Perfecting Gel in Blushed.

If you are too busy to go through the multi-step makeup application process, or just need a quicker way to pretty, try this line of Per-fekt(ion) beauty products. Visit the company’s website for more product details.


This post was written by @ChristeneCarr 

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Recently a few beauty and fashion bloggers were sitting in Neiman Marcus at a press event, where inevitably, our conversation turned to being fashionable on a bloggerʼs budget. My contribution was more along the lines of how to keep your modestly priced purchases looking good longer….here goes!


I wish I could regularly shop at Neiman Marcus but with my current finances that would be suicidal. Stores like Zara, H&M, Forever21 and Marshallʼs are a mecca of trendiness that fit into my budget. While I do recognize that I get what I pay for with these stores, I have my ways to extend the life of clothing and accessories purchases. In fact, some of these tips are good for all clothes — no matter the price tag.

Check fabric and craftsmanship. Pull on seems, buttons and zippers. Check linings and any attachments to finished garment. I reinforce all buttons, especially on outerwear and double stitch (on my sewing machine) anything that looks a bit flimsy. I do a loop stitch at the end of zippers to reduce incidents of breaking. I also have a
needle and thread in my wallet. (Judging me yet?)

Buy a good detergent. Pre hand-wash high stain areas such as under arms and wash clothes on gentle cycle. Tumble dry on moderate heat. I use Tide for regular wash and Woolite dark on the gently or delicate cycle for everything that may fade with washing.

At home 5 minute dry clean with Febreeze fabric refresher. Spray garment lightly and pop the garment in the dryer for a few minutes. Remove propmptly and hang. This works really well for blazers, cardigans and sweater dresses.

Iron everything inside out. This reduces the likelihood of shining of fabric, especially polyester blends (a favorite fabric at the H&M’s and Forever21’s of the world.)


Letʼs face it, the right accessory can take an outfit over the top. While I do pay attention to accessory trends I tend to wear the same accessories forever (real or fake.) For those pieces that are susceptible to tarnish (metallic tones) I use toothpaste. Coat the item, let it sit for a few minutes, then rinse with luke warm water while brushing with an old toothbrush.

Fabric Preservation

Buy a fabric shaver. This bad boy works wonders on fabric pills and fuzz on sweaters and outerwear. I’m not sure how I would make it through winter without my fabric shaver…it’s almost as essential as a snow blower. I use this one from Walmart.

Bottom Line: I want to be fashionable on a dime and the tips above help me get the most out of my purchases. I hope they do the same for you.


This post is written by ThisThatBeauty Contributor, Christene Carr. For more: @ChristeneCarr  on Twitter and  www.christenecarr.com

When I think spa treatment, never before has the thought been on lips, but at a recent Bliss event at the W Hotel, I was introduced to a spa treatment that is intended just for lips! “Fabulips” by Bliss, is a four step process to soften, smooth and dare I say — encourage kissable lips. The treatment goes a little something like this:

Step 1: Refresh with the Foaming Lip Cleanser – This first of its kind lip shampoo with cocoa butter, shea butter and rice bran extract, foamed and expanded when I applied it to my lips. To test the efficacy of this lip shampoo, I applied a lip stain moments before applying the cleanser and it did a good job of cleaning my lips.

Step 2: Retexturize with Sugar Lips Scrub – What better way to polish your pucker than with an oil and sugar based scrub, formulated with almond and walnut shell? I can’t think of any.

Step 3: Rejuvenate with the Lip Plumper – This step uses peptides and cork tree extract to plump the lips and prepare them for pouting perfection.

Step 4: Replenish with the Softening Lip Balm – This is the final step to the perfect pucker. It contains shea butter, ultra moisturizing jojoba oil and vitamin E.

At the Bliss event after my lip treatment, I wasn’t convinced that Fabulips really made a difference. However, once I got home and was able to apply the Refresh and Retexturize steps with my finger tip, (rather than the cotton swab used at the event) my lips were super soft and I was happy with the results. Bliss, I am a believer! *taps bible*

Products are available at Bliss Spas, www.blissworld.com, www.sephora.com and bliss catalog 888 243 8825

This post is written by ThisThatBeauty Contributor, Christene Carr. For more: @ChristeneCarr  on Twitter and  www.christenecarr.com

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Last October, I had the pleasure of seeing the work of David Jay, the fashion photographer behind the Pulitzer prize nominated SCAR Project.  The SCAR Project is “a series of large-scale portraits of young breast cancer survivors.”

The experience was moving and powerful one for me and I strongly urge you to see it. You may read ThisThatBeauty’s interview with David Jay here.

The second annual exhibit runs from October 28th through November 6th, 2011. Don’t miss the opportunity to see this amazing exhibit. Tickets are available at EventBrite.

For more information on The SCAR Project, please visit  the exhibit website or Facebook page.

If you attend the exhibit, please take a moment to share your reaction with us at ThisThatBeauty.


This post is written by ThisThatBeauty Contributor, Christene Carr. For more: @ChristeneCarr  on Twitter and  www.christenecarr.com

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Super fit ThisThatBeauty Contributor Christene Carr (@ChristeneCarr) gives Prancing Leopard Organic Active Wear a whirl. Her thoughts . . .


When buying workout clothes I generally scout out whatever is on sale and available in my size…go on, judge me. Aside from price and size, usually, my only other criteria is that the gear is constructed of a cotton blend.

After working out in Prancing Leopard’s Wakhan Pamir Capris I suddenly started hating all of my bargain basement workout clothes. The fabric is extremely soft. The seams and stitches are in all the right places, which makes them excellent for stretching exercises. The cotton doesn’t pill, so even though my legs tend to rub together [pretend you didn’t just read that] and after several wears and washes, the capris look almost good as new. The fabric used to make the capris and most of the other fitness clothing is “moisture wicking” — this means that even after sweating like a pig, my pants aren’t stuck to me body, making me feel uncomfortable, icky, and gross. After reading all about my experience with Prancing Leopard’s Wakhan Pamir Capris, I’m sure you are dying to learn a bit more about Prancing Leopard.

Prancing Leopard is an organic line of dance, yoga and fitness clothing that was started by Sevda and Bert Holland because they “could not find organic active wear that was stylish and comfortable enough to go beyond [their] yoga, dance and fitness activities so [they] could wear it throughout [their] busy, multi-tasking days.” Not only is this company concerned with how breathable, comfortable and environmentally friendly their clothes are, but they are also concerned with the well being of people and animals. The company donates a percentage of online sales to a yoga studio chosen by the buyer.

In addition, Prancing Leopard sells artisanal pieces, such as knit leg warmers and crochet necklaces that are handmade by women in under served communities. The company also donates a portion of their profits to the snow leopard trust. Prancing Leopard is definitely “feel good” clothing, but you won’t just feel good because you’re working out in clothes that are soft and extremely comfy, you’ll also feel good knowing that you’re not harming the environment, you’re giving back to the community and you’re helping very adorable snow leopards.

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According to the manufacturers of Orlane, “aging begins to settle in beginning at age 25 and becomes visible towards age 35-40. By effectively fighting against invisible signs of aging, you can delay the transformation of the skin.” Iʼm not one for dramatics but First Time-Fighting Care cream from Orlaneʼs Anagenese 25+ line is fantastic. Used in conjunction with Morning Recovery Concentrate my skin was more radiant almost over night. On day two of using these product I had to check to see if someone had changed the light in the bathroom because my face was glowing.

The secret of First Time-Fighting Care cream is “pro-cellular growth factors” that use “specific peptide to heighten the youth-potential of the cells.”

Also in the line of Orlaneʼs Anagenese 25+ line is the Eye Contour cream that uses “two pro-cellular growth factors, protected and boosted by crinopexy, it activates the production of collagen, encourages cell renewal, and revives the skin’s radiance.” This eye cream is very light and absorbs completely into the eye area.

If you are between the ages of 25 and 35 this line of products is simple and easy to use. All you need to round out your daily regimen is a cleanser and SPF.

Donʼt wait for the signs of aging to appear before you start the battle to keep them at bay…I suggest you get on it now! Orlane products are available at the finest department stores, like Neiman Marcus.


This review was written by ThisThatBeauty Contributor, @ChristeneCarr

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Over the last year or so I have become a little bit obsessed with eye creams. While Iʼm not yet at the stage where I need serious help around the peepers (praises to all that is holy with a wish that the day never comes), every once in a while I have one of those extra long nights that inevitably leads to puffy, tired eyes requiring added TLC. It was after one such run that I started using Le Soin Regard, since then, Iʼve been singing praises.

Le Soin Regard promises immediate and long term benefits against aging, improvement in elasticity, smoothing of fine lines and wrinkles, renewed radiance and reduction in dark circles and puffiness. While Le Soin Regard promised to deliver all that, all I asked was a reduction or prevention of puffiness and addition of radiance — and that was definitely delivered.

When a product does what it promises to do, I have to take a closer look at the ingredients (I do that even when they donʼt work). While all of the ingredients work in unison for maximum product efficacy, here are the ones that stood out to tackle my particular problem; caffeine and green tea extract for the puffiness, Chlorella Vulgaris, a river microalgae to firm eye contour and mica, which illuminates skin and helps to reflect light. Other noteworthy ingredients include Blue Lotus Stem Cells, which restructures, smoothes and tightens and Helychrisum flower water and Tourmaline which improves microcirculation.

Le Soin Regard is made by Absolution, a unisex, organic line from France that was made available at SpaceNK in spring of 2011. Le Soin Regard is over 99% natural, retails for $43. The 10 ml product size will easily last a month with once daily use. Try it and let me know what you think.


This review was written by @ChristeneCarr

Hey, everyone! My ace beauty contributor, @ChristeneCarr, has partnered with Caudalie to offer you, yes YOU, the opportunity to win her fave fragrance of the moment. Listen up!


Everyone loves a contest and this one is truly worth entering. Caudalie recently launched three fragrances, Fleur de Vinge, Zeste de Vinge and The des Vignes, (read my review here). The three fragrance combination was developed to capture the essence of life on the Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte, a French vineyard, at dawn, noon and dusk. I fell in love with The des Vinges, which coincidentally, corresponds with my favorite time of day. Now you, lovely reader, have an opportunity to win one of the these three amazing fragrances!

Here’s how:

1. Describe your favorite time of day and why. Email your response, with your full name to ttbgiveaways@gmail.com. Use subject heading Caudalie Fragrance Contest.

2. Follow @thisthatbeauty , @ChristeneCarr, @caudalieUSA on twitter and leave a comment below with your twitter handle.

One entry per person. US residents only. The contest ends on 7/22. Caudalie will send the winner the fragrance that corresponds with their favorite time of day. In addition, the winner will be entered in another contest to win $250 gift basket from Caudalie.

Bonne chance!

Lumene products fuse technology and Artic natural ingredients to create targeted skin care potions that take the guess work out of choosing. Product categories and offerings are broken down based on age, skin type, and usage. The packaging includes an easy-to-use age range usage scale (back of packaging) and color coded matching system to clearly identify products in each line, and sun/moon symbols to denote day or night usage.

The Vitamin C+ product range is designed for women 25+. The use of cluodberry seed oil and nectar, lingonberry, blueberry and cranberry seed oil along with Vitamin C, offer optimal protection against the signs of aging and provide detoxifying benefits.

Excellent Future is designed for women 30+ (like yours truly). The products help to promote skin’s ability to repair. According to Lumene, through the unique formulation called ApplexcellT, which contains stem cells from the Scandinavian Uttwiler Spatlauber apple and Arctic white peat, skin’s structure is strengthened by improving its barrier system and moisture balance.

Time Freeze is for women 40+. The product range contains Artic heather and plant proteins, and according to Lumene, “extract from heather flowers help maintain healthy levels of collagen and elastin fibers in skin, reducing the appearance of fine lines.” Arbutin, a skin brightener, is found in the stalks of the heather plant and help to lighten and prevent pigment changes.

Premium Beauty products are formulated for 50+ skin. The line is intended to  “minimize the signs of aging and boost skin’s natural functions to achieve firmer, smoother texture and a more even (skin) tone.” The Premium Beauty products use Scandinavian sea buckthorn oil and nectar as well as aTri-peptide compound.

For beauties with sensitive skin, Lumene has a specially formulated line just for you! The products are developed in cooperation with Finnish Allergy and Asthma Federation, a non-profit public health organization based in Helsinki. Free of parabens, fragrance, mineral oils, alcohol and silicones — the Sensitive Touch line is a custom fit for finicky skin.

So, no matter what your skin type, chances are you will find a Lumene product that is right for you. Lumene products are available at CVS, Sears, Ulta Beauty and Target. Stay tuned for a review of products from the Excellent Future line.


This post was written by @ChristeneCarr


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Vino in hand, smile abound, in the wonderfully fragrant and relaxing Caudaliespa at the Plaza hotel, I was introduced to Caudalieʼs three new fragrances, Fleur de Vinge, Zeste de Vinge and The des Vignes. The fragrances will soon be available online at caudalie-usa and are currently available at Sephora, Bluemercury and select specialty retailers.

The three fragrance combination was developed for Caudalie to capture the essence of life on the Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte, a vineyard owned by the parents of Caudalieʼs co-founder, Mathilde Thomas.

The dawn fragrance, Fleur de Vinge, uses top notes of grapefruit and mandarin, wonderfully balanced by the sweet subtle spiciness of cedar. If you are a morning person, you will love this fragrance. Fleur de Vinge starts off fresh but ends with a delicate sweetness. If you are not a morning person, this fragrance will give you a nudge to start your day.

Zeste de Vinge, the noon fragrance, is perfumer Francis Kurkdjianʼs interpretation of a afternoon stroll through Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte orangery, laden with citrus trees. Zeste de Vinge combines sweet lemon, petit grain and bergamot for a refreshing start, balanced with tangerine and finished with the tiniest hint of earthiness.

The des Vignes, the dusk fragrance, is the handy work of master perfumer Jaques Cavalier. It combines a few of my favorite scents: jasmine, neroli ginger and white musk. I find this fragrance sensual, alluring and seductive with a bit of mystery. It lingered on my skin and simply became more amazing with each hour that passed. The finish was that of powdery, gingery, musk. The des Vignes is by far my favorite fragrance from
the trio.

Try the Caudalie fragrance that fits your favorite time of day. Mine was spot on!

All three 1.7 fluid ounce bottles have a MSRP of $38.

[Editor’s Note: This is Felicia…I all but wrested Christene to the ground for her sample of The des Vignes. It is a must-possess scent]

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This post is written by ThisThatBeauty Contributor, Christene Carr (@ChristeneCarr)

If you are like me and have tried Sheer Cover products before with results that left you wanting more, I suggest you give it another go.  I recently met Leeza Gibbons, the official spokesperson for Sheer Cover, and got down to the business of learning all about the improvements to the Sheer Cover line of mineral cosmetics.

The most exciting news for me is the addition of a darker shades to both the concealer and powder foundation. A few years ago I succumbed to an infomercial and bought the starter kit…but alas, even the darkest shade of concealer and foundation were too light for me. I’m eagerly awaiting the delivery of the darker shades, almond and mocha, but in the meantime, I’m exploring the bronzer, primer and ultimate makeover kit.

All Sheer Cover minerals are 100% natural, infused with skin soothing botanicals, sun protection, and anti-oxidant green tea. According Leeza, the ingredients in the makeup help to prevent the visible signs of premature aging.

Curious about the NEW Sheer Cover?….They’re now available via HSN as well as their website. With a money back guarantee, you have nothing to lose and flawless face to gain.  Get to it!

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This post is written by ThisThatBeauty Contributor, Christene Carr (@ChristeneCarr)

Toni Francesc’s Fall 2011 line was inspired by the Pheonix. The lined featured burnt orange, yellows, and rich browns along with more muted colors like grey, beige and the all important black.  With this in mind Mehron’s Jackie Mgido  wanted a face that wouldn’t detract from the warm colors in the line but also wanted to add bit of life in the face for balance.  For a flawless matte finish on the face Mgido used Mehron’s Celebre PRO-HD Foundation with the ProColorRing Concealer. The cheeks were contoured using Mojave and Wine Berry CHEEK Powder and finished with Barrier Spray to set it for the runway..

The eyes were made uber dramatic my adding a mix of Mehron’s Black Onyx E.Y.E Powder and Slate Grey E.Y.E Cream. This represented the ashes and Mehron’s Feather E.Y.E Lashes were used to represent the wings. The eyes were further emphasized by Mehron’s Black Detailz.


The only noticeable color on the face was a custom blood red lip that was a combination of Mehron’s Velvet Rose and Raspberry L.I.P Color from the night palette. Lips were then topped with Clear Glosstone for a pop of sheen.

Mehron’s Key Products used on the Toni Francesc Runway:

  • Celebre Pro HD Foundation
  • ProColorRing Concealer
  • Black Onyx E.Y.E Powder
  • Slate Grey E.Y.E Cream
  • Black Detailz
  • Feather E.Y.E Lashes
  • Velvet Rose & Raspberry L.I.P Cream
  • Clear Glosstone


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