My Must-Have Top 5 Drugstore Beauty Products

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Hello, Glamazons!!! I’m really excited to bring you this list of my Top 5 Must-Have Drugstore Beauty Products! I had tons, and tons to choose from out of my own personal collection, but I really thought about what I use the MOST often, and what is the most helpful to my overall routine. We’ve all been there: Wanting to save money on luxury items, so we go for the more generic brands, but waste even MORE money trying to figure out what works or not from the drugstore. So here it is!

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1. Clean & Clear Advantage: 3-in-1 Exfoliating Cleanser: I LOVE THIS STUFF!!! I’m not ashamed to admit that for a year and a half I struggled with adult acne. This might not be your problem (yay for you!), but I have to really take AMAZING care of my skin. There were many factors that helped clear up my unsightly pimples (my cleaner diet, lots more water, the Clarisonic, less stress, etc.), but when I started using this face wash, THAT is when it all turned around! WARNING: This is probably too strong for a lot of skin types out there. I would not use this morning and night to start off. See how you like it. I am personally able to use it every time I was my face, as long as I do a great job with my follow-up moisturizer, but that’s a whole different post. I love it! Thanks Clean & Clear! I really do feel “under control.” 馃槈 ***BUYING TIP***: I’ve found the freshest supply to be stocked at Target. The shelves run out pretty often, so check back frequently to see if you can find it.

2. Biosilk Silk Therapy: OBSESSED!!!!! No matter how many luxury items I use before blow drying my hair, this will always be my #1 styling product! A little goes a LONG way. Don’t ever put it into your roots unless you want to take a day trip to GREASY CITY! I’ve had hair stylists tell me not to use this because they are pushing their own product line, or people say “It’s so old! My mom used to use that! There’s newer, better stuff out there.” (FYI: If your mom used it, she’s not old!) This classic product is amazing, and keeps my hair protected from the heat, truly SILKY, and soft. I love love love love it. I never blow dry my hair straight without it. BONUS: The beautiful Kyle Richards (RHOBH) uses this on her long, luscious tresses…if it’s great enough for her, it’s great enough for the rest of us! You cannot tempt me with the “latest and greatest” product…so far, nothing is as great as this! LONG-HAIRED GIRLS, REJOICE! This is for you! ***MONEY-SAVING TIP***: They sell this product in a jumbo size at Costco. Worth it.***

3. Neutrogena Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelettes: I wipe off my make up with one of these every night before washing my face. It’s great for taking the “layer” off, so you can really get into those pores. Sleeping with make up on = fast-track to aging. Aging is a beautiful, necessary part of life, and I want to fully embrace it as it comes…but um, let’s all agree: We can do our best to slow it down! Kim Kardashian once said (not an exact quote) that these wipes were a life-saver for her on nights when she’s too tired to wash her face, and just wants to go to bed! ***BUYING/MONEY-SAVING TIP***: These are sold in bulk at Costco, and once in a while if you’re lucky, they will also sell the hard box container with it to keep it fresh. You can find them in drug stores, but it’s more expensive per unit.

4. L’Oreal Total Repair 5 Damage Erasing Balm: THIS IS THE BEST $5-$8 YOU’LL EVER SPEND ON A HAIR PRODUCT. I’ve said that to countless people. I mean it. So many of my girlfriends have appreciated this recommendation. It’s the best hair mask ever, and can actually be used as a replacement to your conditioner. I use this about 2-3 times per week. Long-haired ladies, keep those ends FRESH AND SOFT with this amazing recovery mask. Use it in the shower, just follow the directions on the tub. Love, love, love! Enough said!

5. L’Oreal Youth Code Dark Spot Serum Corrector: After my bout with acne, my olive skin had lots of pigmented little spots that I wanted to clear up…this little $20-something bottle did the trick. No fancy premium creams, no lasers, just this. AMAZING! I use it every day and night before applying my moisturizer. You won’t look like you had a facelift or anything, but it certainly makes the skin tone even, and brighter. I’ve noticed that over a long period of time, this has been the most effective for getting my spots under control. Thank you L’Oreal! This one is a WINNER!!!! Again, this might not be for everyone, but it works amazingly for me.

Target and CVS are GREAT about returning opened beauty products, as long as they aren’t all used up. So if any of these don’t work for you, get your money back! I personally love all 5 of them! Hope you en

If you have other topic requests about what you would like to see on the blog, please send to fashionbeautysisters@gmail.com… and of course, follow my daily micro-posts on Instagram @sara_hodge. Your BEST beauty accessory is your SMILE, and your joy from within!

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Pics of the Week!

Hello my fabuLASH Glamazons! If you don’t follow us on Instagram (which you should!), here are some of my favorite pics and posts you missed this week.

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LASHES! I started off with this selfie, showing the Ardell 109 lashes. I love these! They are the exact length of my own natural lashes, so they add the perfect fullness I need when I know I will be taking a lot of photos. Make sure to try the awesome lash applying tip I shared in this post! Crystal hoop earrings are by Tasha.

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MEETING THE ONE AND ONLY COACH GLITTER!!! I got to meet Tiffany Lee Bymaster this week, and she is LITERALLY as amazing as you would think she is from all her social media sites and blogging. She made my whole week! We met up at my fave nail spot, Zen Nails in OC, and talked about everything under the sun for a couple hours. Felt like I’ve known her forever. She taught me a lot about social media, blogging and branding. She’s INCREDIBLE! Like her FB page at Coach Glitter, and follow her on Instagram @coachglitter. You’ll be amazed by her great make up, workout and fashion tips! (The collage pic above is from her personal Instagram, the nail design is hers…looks awesome!)

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I loved this chic pregnant outfit I saw on Pinterest. Something about the leather, the hat and the scarf got me. It inspired this look! I don’t go for an exact match when I’m looking at photos for inspiration- I pick the textures and pieces that I love, and go from there. Hat is from Shop Primadonna (THEY HAVE THE BEST ACCESSORIES FOR SO INEXPENSIVE). I get asked about this jacket all the time…People are shocked when I tell them it’s Forever 21! The quilted leather shoulder accents and zipper details make this jacket look really expensive. Jeans are AG, and shoes of course are Aldo.

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This spring blazer + wedges look was 100% inspired by this Kristin Cavallari pic! She’s sporting her bump, a colorful blazer, jeans and wedges…I don’t look cute in mustard, so I went with a blush pink blazer that I already had in my closet. It’s also from Forever 21, and shoes are Steve Madden. Skylar earrings in slate from Kendra Scott. I LOVED this look. Felt feminine, pretty and bumpalicious!

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MY NEW, FAVORITE EVERRRRRR FOUNDATION!!!!!!! This Bobbi Brown long wear even finish foundation is so amaze that I actually took a pic with NO other make up on just to show you the texture and how naturally it goes on. No filter and no edit on this pic. I have no mascara, no concealer, NOTHING besides moisturizer and foundation. Love love love.

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This was my outfit on Saturday for a friend’s baby shower! Entire ensemble is Forever 21, and jewelry is Kendra Scott (of course!). The hairstyle was inspired by a recent Maria Menounos look she sported on TV. I had a BLAST that day, and felt perfectly spring-like in this dress. I tied the vest up to accentuate my growing bump, which is my favorite accessory, and fills my heart with love and joy!

Hope you enjoyed my fave pics from this week! It was a fun one!

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Hotel Room Essentials!

These are my essentials for traveling; my must-have skin care buddies to keep me fresh and aglow!

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The Claironic MIA 2, which comes with an awesome travel case, is my weapon of all weapons. It has a handy timer on it, but I usually go longer than the timer when I need a slower,deeper clean… Especially on these long dance days! I love it!!!! Use it in circular motions, even though it already rotates circularly.

The Murad Anti-aging Moisturizer with Broad Spectrum SPF (the blue label) I wear during the day, and the Dermalogica Intensive Moisture Balance at night….IT’S SERIOUSLY LIKE A TRIP TO A SWISS SPA FOR MY SKIN!!!!! Obsessed!

Murad Hydrodynamic Eye Cream…what can I say? I’ve tried them ALL and this one works best for me. Can we say “Fresh drink of water for my eyes?”

L’Oreal Youth Code Serum Corrector helps me keep my tone even, spots light and everything under control. It’s especially important since I’m pregnant right now, and can’t use retinol to keep any light spotting away. It’s from Target, and such a steal! Great product.

It’s important to drink tons of H2O while traveling to stay hydrated!!! Those hotel rooms will suck the moisture right out of you! I even bring some of this to spritz on for extra help:

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What do you always make sure to bring in your suitcase? Happy travels!

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Make Sure Your Nails Are 3-Free!

Inspired by my pregnancy, I went with the baby-boy vibes plus a double-party-nail on each hand! Loving it!

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Of course I used one of my fave nail lacquer brands: essie! I love the quality, and best of all- ALL ESSIE POLISH IS MADE 3-FREE!!! Is your nail polish free of the 3 major common chemicals in polish? It’s so important! Believe it or not, the chemicals from your nail color go into the skin through the nail beds. Many brand name cosmetic companies use Dibutyl Phthalate, Toluene, and Formaldehyde (Remember formaldehyde??? That disgusting chemical in 7th grade science class used to preserve dead organs and specimens in big, creepy jars?!) There are premier brands that make 5-Free polish, but are generally much more expensive. To take good health measures and still have glam hands, I use a minimum 3-Free polish.

Want a list of safe nail lacquer brands? I love this blog post about it, check it out!

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Try a fun party nail, or cute nail art! Every time I look at my mani/pedi I smile and think about how excited I am to become a mom! Such a joy…and it’s fun to incorporate it into everyday fashion too!

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Remington Curling Wand!

I really wanted a non-tapered curling wand with a wider barrel for a more relaxed wave look. This 1.5″ Remington wand from Target is AWESOME! Here’s the look:

**FYI: I curled the hair from my natural, curly style to keep the volume! If you want a sleeker, flatter look, curl it from straight hair.

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Scarf from Zara, Jacket is A&F, Grey Shirt is Isabella Oliver (fave of pregnant celebs), and of course the Frye boots! Jewelry by Kendra Scott.

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What’s your favorite hair styling tool? I would love to know!

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Going Out!

What do you do when you aren’t in the mood to full on blow-dry-and-style your hair? 1 HAT + 1 LOW SIDE BUN = INSTANT HAIR STYLE! Boom! Easy.

It’s no secret that I love a great wedge hi top sneaker! Buyers beware: there are many weird looking ones out there! Be very choosy. These Aldo’s are my fave signature wedge kicks; sleek, classy and fabulous. Also, IN LOVE with this wide-brimmed hat!

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OUTFIT: HAT, Shop Primadonna // JACKET, Forever 21 // PANTS, Bebe // SHOES, Aldo.

Fun Fact: Every piece of this outfit has appeared several times on the blog before, in other outfits (besides the hat)!!! A great wardrobe is about mixing and matching key pieces. No need to break the bank!

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Lanc么me Mascara & Gift!

I love when Lanc么me does a gift with purchase! I went to get a new tube of one of my fave mascaras (hyn么se star), and to my pleasant surprise…. gifts with purchase!! Several things not pictured, one if which was a huge, fab charcoal makeup bag! I love this eye shadow set. A smokey purple is one of my top two eye shadow looks…so this is quite the treat! And who doesn’t love the world’s best (in my opinion) eye make up remover? Score!

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Getting Your Best Hair Cut!!

I cannot say it enough: The KEYS to a fab hairstyle are healthy hair AND a great haircut!!! A hair cut completely transforms how a person looks.

Some people rock several different lengths, colors and styles, 谩 la Emma Stone or Jessica Biel. Others look fierce with a tried and true hairstyle, with hints of variation every now and then- like Sofia Vergara and Blake Lively!

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I am part of the latter group: A consistent style through the years, with hints of changes! Pics of my most recent cut **THANK YOU ISABEL, MY STYLIST**!!!

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20130922-103040.jpgI will take be sure to take photos from the front next time.

THINGS TO REMEMBER FOR YOUR NEXT HAIRCUT:

1. Be SPECIFIC about what you want. Don’t be afraid to communicate. Too many people leave it up to the stylist, and are disappointed with the results. They aren’t mind readers!
2. BRING PHOTOS! Give visual examples of what you want! Look below for ideas of who to bring photos of.
3. Ask for a haircut that will look good strait, wavy and/or curled. Most people overlook this detail.
4. If your stylist doesn’t do what you ask for…don’t feel bad about moving on to someone else! Ask your friends for a good referral.

CELEB HAIR EXAMPLES: Google these stars’ hair for pics to show your stylist (example: “Jennifer Aniston hair”).

SHORT HAIR:

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-Julianne Hough
-Katie Holmes
-Emma Thompson

MEDIUM HAIR:

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-Jennifer Aniston
-Jessica Biel
-Carrie Underwood

LONG HAIR:

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-Jenna Dewan Tatum
-Blake Lively
-Jennifer Lopez

This is how my hair looks styled from the front. Photo by Arina Borodina.

20130922-115538.jpgThank you so much for reading!!! Submit any hair or beauty questions, and I will get back to them!

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Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick!

It’s definitely a berry lipstick kind of day! I love that it matches the piping on my dance leotard, & it’s such a happy color!

20130918-074727.jpgDETAILS: LIPSTICK: Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Berry Couture// MASCARA: MAC Zoom Lash in black & Covergirl Lashblast Volume in very black waterproof // Not wearing any bottom eye liner & mascara for a fresh, wide-awake look // HAIR: Natural texture, no blowout.

Now about this LIPSTICK!!! I say this with total seriousness: The Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick & Lipgloss are the absolute BEST drug store lipstick & gloss I’ve ever bought! 100%!!!!! The best! I only bought the matching berry colors to try it out, but I will certainly get more in the future.

20130918-082930.jpgThis is just as amazing as high end designer lipsticks. I almost never like drug store lipstick as much as the “expensive stuff.” In fact, this lipstick makes me NOT like any of my other drug store lipsticks anymore, because it’s SO GOOD! Soft, truly lustrous almost like a gloss, brilliant color, goes on smooth & lasts a long time. The gloss is soft, not sticky, & very shiny. I love it!!!!!! Definitely get some for yourself in the color of your choice.

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SUPER Fun LBD!

20130906-202431.jpgI absolutely love this LBD! Such a fun fit-and-flare cut. I styled it with a voluminous pony tail and fabulous statement necklace, for a polished look.

A lot of people asked where my dress was from, and I almost didn’t want to tell them! It was such a steal from TARGET! I should have gotten two of them because it was so inexpensive. Necklace is from Forever 21 ($9.00).

You could style this dress a million different ways- casual, dressy, you name it! It’s an amazing closet staple!

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Recent Finds I Love!!!

Hello Fashion Dolls!!! I definitely recommend these new finds!

HAPPY 1 YEAR WEDDING ANNIVERSARY!!! MY HUSBAND GOT ME BEAUTIFUL, THOUGHTFUL AND ROMANTIC GIFTS FOR OUR FIRST WEDDING ANNIVERSARY…and one of the gifts he got me were these GORGEOUS earrings in clear amethyst from Kendra Scott.

20130812-182648.jpgTHANK YOU, HUBBY!!! I love them! I wore them with this outfit…

20130812-183346.jpgI love the earrings! I will be wearing them often. So grateful!

I am really happy with this new mascara and lipstick; the lip color is the perfect nude with a hint of light pink!

20130812-184009.jpgWearing both the Lanc么me mascara and fabulous Dior lip color here:

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And lastly, this recent find…fun details on this dress!

20130812-191006.jpgWhat have you recently found that you love?

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Summer Beauty Product Reviews

20130724-064343.jpgHaving a great arsenal of summer products is key to healthy, and beautiful hair and skin. After testing out each of these drug store beauty finds, here’s what I think…

1. Pantene Pro-V Volume, Silicone Free Shampoo: 100% AMAZING!!!!! I have been using it all summer with the matching conditioner. I recommend both! Got my sister, Laura, hooked on it too. Hair is super shiny, healthy, and weightless. Note to the health-conscious: this is NOT a sulfate-free product. However it is silicon and dye free. These days it seems like you have to pick and choose your evils to get a great product. I am going to keep using this shampoo and it’s matching conditioner.

2. Coppertone Tanning Oil Sunscreen Spray with SPF: It’s great, but it’s the first of this type of product I’ve used. I want to also try the L’Oreal product (the Sublime Bronze Sunscreen Oil), and see which I like better. This product is not greasy at all. Goes on really smoothly. I also love that it’s broad spectrum!!!! Gotta have good sun protection. I would buy this product again if I don’t like the L’Oreal better.

3. Banana Boat Moisture After Sun Lotion: Not buying again. It’s not easy to rub in, and doesn’t really feel like a drink of water for my skin. I am not going to buy again, and will be looking for a more moisturizing and after-sun lotion. Any recommendations?

4. Clean & Clear Oil Absorbing Sheets: Love these!!!! Definitely buying again when they run out! They are equally as great, if not better, than the high-end make up brand ones that I’ve used. Keeps me fresh and shine free. They don’t rub off my make up when I use them, which is a big PLUS! I recommend this product.

Enjoy every ounce of summer, and don’t forget to use a broad-spectrum sunscreen! It’s important to take care of your skin today, for a beautiful and more healthy tomorrow.

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What I Wore: EMERALD!!!

Emerald is the color of the year, and I am LOVING it!!! After a week of photo shoots, dress rehearsals and 4 amazing shows, this is what I wore on stage for our finale.

20130702-071420.jpgThis photo was taken late at night after the event, but I still had to share it with you! Details: DRESS: Arden B // HEELS: Enzo Angiolini (looks identical to the Jimmy Choo’s, for a much different price tag).

Close up of my eye make up, before the show:

20130702-072348.jpgSmokey eyes are a must on the dance stage! What fun events or fashion moments have you experienced lately? Would love to hear!!!

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Photo Shoot: Make Up

I’m excited to share this with you! My make up for a dance photo shoot at work:

20130625-232558.jpg This is a fun look for me! LIPSTICK: MAC Diva, EYE SHADOW: MAC Silver Ring, Carbon and Orb, MASCARA: MAC Zoom Lash and Covergirl Lash Blast.

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Recent Finds I Love!!!

Here are some of my new, favorite finds!!!

Favorite Skin-Toned Polish…

20130616-224841.jpg**NO FILTER applied to nail polish photos, so you can get an accurate view of the color.

LOVING this plum-toned polish!

20130616-225108.jpg**Also no filter, no edit on the images so you can get a true nail polish color. Heels by Steve Madden, sold out.

Best Cocktail/Every Day Ring…

20130616-230440.jpgI LOVE THIS RING!!!! Kendra does it again- GORGEOUS!!!! Totally light-weight and durable too. This matches every outfit, and I get compliments on it all the time. This is a must-have jewelry staple for your wardrobe. I usually wear it on my fourth finger, but had it on my index just for the photo.

What are some of your new, favorite things?

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Hair of the Day: Beautiful Curly!!

Recently I did a post on wavy curls. I showed you a pic that I did starting with strait hair and then curling it. Here I started with my hair naturally curly and added the vavavoom with the hair tool I showed you in THIS blog post. Check it out!!! Here’s the final result:

20130608-071401.jpg Remember, hold the hair in 1-2 inch sections and hold for “8 fast seconds”…randomly twist the hair around the barrel in different directions for an extra wild look. Love you, Hair Divas!

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Natural Summer Make Up!!!

20130605-071911.jpgThe make up I wear, only for the natural look!

Any product with a “*” next to it means sometimes I skip this one.

First- foundation. Keep it light weight! Here are 2 options. The Bobbi Brown I wear on the regular- it has SPF and looks like a second skin. The glo minerals I wear if I know I’ll be taking any photos because it never flashes white in pictures! Love it.

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20130605-072430.jpg Now it’s time to contour with blush / and or bronzer, and highlighter. You can use just one or all 3. Remember to blend and contour well.

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I’m obsessed with this angled brush by Sonia Kashuk; it’s from Target!!! I didn’t post a pic of my highlighter because I’m using one that I’m not crazy about. When I find one I LOVE I’ll let you know! Any suggestions???

Eyes are my favorite part!!! I’m crazy about my brows and lashes. If you know me, you know that mascara is my #1 favorite make up product! I firmly believe that, just like denim jeans, every woman has a different brand of mascara that is best for her. I’ve used every mascara under the sun (seriously I think I have), and these are my summer favorites of all time. I use the liner to do a very discreet, but precise line. The paint pot is used under the liner to make it stay all day. Remember this is all-natural, so no eyeshadow.

20130605-074117.jpg Keep the lips beautiful! Do minimal work for the eyes and lips because that is what gives the easy, lovely summertime look. I have an unreal quantity of lip gloss colors. These are my top 3 in order of favorites.

20130605-074551.jpg Enjoy and keep it simple! Summer is a time where natural is most beautiful! What are your favorite summer make up products?

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Essie Summer 2013

Essie is selling their Summer 2013 collection now, and I LOVE it! My fave color is this featured one in their add “Naughty Nautical.” It is so fun and vibrant for summertime! Which is your favorite?

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Get Your “Wavy Curls” Today!

20130515-173610.jpg My hair is naturally curly (a beachy easy type of curly), but here I styled it wavy/big curls. This look is so easy, fast, and lasts for a couple days.

I use the 1.5″ piece on this AMAZING Herstyler 3p curling wand. Seriously it’s the best curling wand (not to be confused with curling irons, but that’s another story)! It’s the same brand as a lot of those $200 mall kiosk wands, but sold at approximately $40-$50 on amazon.com. I never go on a vacation without it because its a super fast way to get salon style!

20130515-175249.jpg How To: I hold my hair in 1″-2″ sections, wrapped around the barrel for 8 fast seconds. You’ll have to experiment how long is good for you- we all have different hair! Be careful, if you hold it too tightly or too long, the curls will be too tight like Prom Hair circa 2003. Really important: I always use a flat iron to quickly straiten the very most front pieces of hair, and the roots by the edge of my face (don’t straiten the ends just the first few inches from the root to mid-section), because “curly bangs” aren’t cute with this hair style.

If I style my hair like this starting from straitened hair, I get more sleek, polished looking waves. If I do this starting with my naturally curly hair, I get large, very voluminous hair. I enjoy both looks, just depends on what look I’m going for.

Gorgeous celebs rocking this exact hair style (Take Note! These leading ladies’ hair stylists also do the straiten-the-few-inches-of-hair-around-the-face move! It’s important!):

20130515-175923.jpg Top to bottom, Left to right: Selena Gomez, Lauren Conrad, Katie Holmes, Jessica Biel, Reese Witherspoon, Kate Beckinsale.

If you have any hair product questions for styling, send them to us by tagging us @fashionbeautysisters on Instagram! We would love to answer them!

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Recent Finds I Love!

20130502-074157.jpg I needed some new lip color and gloss, but didn’t want to spend the $14-$30++ at the mall (even though that’s where my favorite brands are). So I tried these, which were $5.99/each at Target! Revlon Lip Butter in Stawberry Shortcake, and L’Loreal Colour Riche lip gloss in Nude Touch. I love both!!!!! The butter goes on like a super silky lip balm, and has vibrant color too. The gloss is FABULOUS!!!! Not sticky at all, it’s light-weight and goes on smooth. It looks *almost* as lustrous as my Christian Dior Addict Lip Gloss. (For literally 1/6 of the price, almost as lustrous is more than enough for me!!!) I like both products a lot, but if I had to recommend only one for you to try first I’d start with the gloss. Add it to whatever you’re already wearing, OR wear it alone. Looks great either way! An instant look-lift.

Also found these rad, ultra delicate silver hoops at Francesca’s! They are the perfect add on to my Nike-errand-running-outfit.

20130502-081435.jpgSuch a steal at $9.00, compared to the nearly identical ones I saw at Nordy’s for $45.00. Every girl needs a basic hoop in her jewelry armoir! These are so lightweight and dainty, they just peek through my hair. Love them!!!! Don’t have a Francesca’s near you? Shop online HERE. They have the best on-trend accessories at good prices.

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Spring/Summer Nail Polish!

It’s official: I have picked my 2013 spring/summer FAVORITE nail polish color. “Come Here!” by Essie. It’s a bright cross between coral, pink and orange. “Come Here!” looks fun and cute on my tan toes, and I think it would great on any skin color. It is one of the colors from their Spring 2013 Resort Collection. I love Essie because it’s great quality, has vibrant colors, and is 3-free (meanings it’s made without the 3 major toxins used in most basic nail polishes- DPB, Formaldehyde*, and Toulene). So yes, for you all-natural people and expectant mothers, Essie has moved their formulas to be safe for all.

Go get your “Come Here!” at any major drug store or beauty supply store.

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Above: Essie Spring 2013 Resort Collection

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Above: “Come Here!”

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*Formaldehyde isn’t actually used in nail polish colors, it’s used in nail polish hardeners. I don’t use beauty products with this chemical in them. That’s a whole separate blog post in itself!