Clarifying Shampoo for Better Hair

Clarifying shampoo is a really important product that I don’t think is talked about enough.

I didn’t even know it existed until a year or so ago. When I finally heard about it, and that it helps your hair when it’s in sad shape (ie. dry, limp, heavy), I was pretty excited.

Who doesn’t want a hair boost?!

When you’re using deep conditioning masks all the time, it can really weigh on your hair and it won’t look it’s best.  Sometimes, the more you use, the drier your hair start to look (which is exactly what you’re not going for).  So, instead of using another deep conditioning mask, that will just further the look you are trying to get, you should look to clarifying shampoo.

Redken Hair Cleansing Cream

I like to think of it like exfoliation, in that you don’t need to exfoliate every day, but it’s still important to do a regular deep clean to remove any excess (skin, dirt, oils, etc.).  The same goes for clarifying shampoo.  You get all of this build up in your hair from products (way too much dry shampoo in my case), to pollution and dirt.  Where regular shampoo usually does the trick for that, it’s important to take it a step further with clarifying shampoo.  This makes your hair so clean and it gets rid of any buildup.  I like to use it once every 2-4 weeks.

Redken Clarifying Shampoo

I asked my hairdresser about it, and she says that she uses a clarifying shampoo once a week.  She said that she uses tons of products on her hair on an everyday basis so she probably needs to use it more than most.

The only one I’ve tried so far is the Redken brand and I love it ♥  (You can find it at Ulta)  It smells so good and I really look forward to the times when I can use it.  I think any clarifying shampoo will do fine.  This bottle is about 10 fl oz and it lasted me and my husband about a year or so.  He loves using it too.

It smells so good and just makes my hair feel squeaky clean.  My hair is more voluminous right after I use it, and just looks bomb.  I usually get an extra day out of my hair in between washes when I use this.

Clarifying Shampoo

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That is just a little hair trick that is so easy and beneficial.  Let me know if you use clarifying shampoo and what brands you like.  I’m super interested!

I’m also really curious about people who use the ‘no poo’ method.  If you’ve done it or are currently doing it, I’d love to hear about it.  Has it changed your views on shampoo?  Did you try it and then get over it?  I tried it once, but it really dried out my hair.  I think I might have used way too much solution.  Any tips would be great!  Comment below or shoot me an email at

♦ Stephanie


2 Ingredient Lip Scrub

I am all about easy tips and DIY’s.  Once it gets too complicated, I’m done.  Lost interest.  No, I will NOT run to Home Depot, Target AND Michael’s to get all of the supplies to make a floating shelf.  No, thank you.

So this brings me to my 2 ingredient lip scrub.  All you need is oil and sugar.

◊   Oil options:  coconut, olive, jojoba, almond  >>> Pick one

◊   Sugar options:  brown, white (are there others?)

I used brown sugar and extra virgin olive oil.

I prefer brown sugar, because the granules are smaller and finer, so the scrub is less abrasive, which works for my lips.  If you want a stronger exfoliation, go for white sugar.  You can even mix the 2 if you’d like.

The last lip scrub I made was with coconut oil.  It was great, but it gets solid at room temperature and I wanted to try the olive oil to see if I liked the consistency and texture better…and I do.

2 Ingredient Lip Scrub

All you do is add sugar to a bowl, and then pour in enough olive oil until it thickens and sticks together. Then, mash it together with a spoon or fork until it forms a paste.  You can add a drop of vanilla extract to make it smell fantastic.  Not necessary though.

Bam.  Done.  Finito.

I use travel containers to store the scrub in.  You can also use little mason jars to put it in for yourself or for a gift.

Benefits of scrubbing your lips:

We exfoliate our faces and bodies, why not our lips?  Lips need exfoliation too, to remove the dry, dead skin cells on the surface.  This helps to get rid of any nasty flakes on your lips, which then helps your lipsticks and glosses go on smoother and last longer.

The olive oil also helps to moisturize the lips while you’re scrubbing away.

How I scrub my lips:

I just scoop up a little bit with my finger and rub the scrub on my lips for about a minute.  Then, I rinse it off with warm water, pat dry, and add a lip balm, chapstick, or ointment to them.  I really like to do this at night and then put on Aquafor Lip Repair or those EOS balm balls to moisturize my lips.

It’s best to do it 1-2 times per week.

If I’m planning on a lipstick night, I will do the scrub and lip balm before I start doing my makeup, and then will wipe off excess lip balm and put on the lipstick at the end of the makeup process.  That way, your lips will be smooth and ready for application.

2 Ingredient Lip Scrub

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If I’m feeling crazy lazy, I do an on the spot lip scrub.  I always keep a little container with brown sugar in my bathroom drawer, along with my always present container of coconut oil to wash my face.  I will smother my lips in coconut oil and then pick up a bit of brown sugar and do a quick scrub that way.

Do you use a lip scrub?  Any other techniques you like to do to exfoliate?

♦  Stephanie


Shaving Your Face with Tinkle Razors

Alright ladies. It’s time to get on board with face shaving.

Whaattt???  I know, I know.

I’m not talking, razor to face, like the ones you use to shave your legs and elsewhere.  I’m also not talking about the razors your guy uses on his face.  But I’m talking about these pretty pastel tinkle razors that are sold as brow shapers.

Women get their upper lip waxed and threaded, but no one ever thinks of shaving.

I first saw this on youtube a few years ago and I was intrigued.  I also remember Caroline from The Real Housewives (New Jersey edition) mentioning it once before too.  It seemed a little out there at first, but I’m loving it.

Not only is this a great way to remove hair, but it exfoliates your skin too!

Tinkle Razor for Shaving Your Face

The term I’ve been hearing salons use for this technique is dermaplaning, which sounds like it’s pretty much the same thing.

Dermaplaning is just a very simple physical or mechanical method of exfoliation, which helps to remove dead skin cells and give your face a brighter complexion,” Dr. Hale told me. “And since it removes some vellus hairs [the baby-fine hairs on your face], it can make the skin feel smoother.” (via)

Now, I am pretty fortunate to have blond hairs on my face, so I don’t really notice the hair too much.  But it’s still there and that sneaky sun of ours likes to put it on blast on those bright summer days.

After shaving, your makeup goes on smoother and the sunlight won’t be catching any peach fuzz.  And the fact that it is removing your dead skin cells is great for your face to look better and brighter, AND to absorb your quality face products even more.  It kind of reminds me of the PMD >>> I will have a post about this amazing tool and all of it’s benefits soon!

How to do it…

I first heard about this from a Michelle Money youtube video.  That girl has some great beauty tips.  And she’s a total babe.  Here’s her little video tutorial to show you the technique.  She cracks me up…

To sum it up:

◊  Put the tool at a 45 degree angle

◊  Pull your skin taut and do short strokes in the direction of hair growth

◊  AND I would wash my face before and after

She does this weekly, but I usually try to get to it quarterly.  It’s weird, but I find it kind of fun.

facial razors

BIG SIDENOTE:   I would be very, extremely, ridiculously careful if you do use these razors for your brows.  I actually would not recommend that at all!  It sounds funny since that’s what these tools say they are made for, but it is too easy to slip up.  So definitely don’t use them near your brows if you’ve had a glass of wine or 2.  I almost had a very serious misstep that would have resulted in a half brow…And that would not be cute.

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So give it a shot and let me know how it goes.  I get my tinkle razors on Amazon.  Have you tried using facial razors?

♦ Stephanie


Face Masks

Loving face masks right now.  I have always underestimated the importance of face masks and am now seeing the light.

I’ve just always been a fickle face masker.

I would buy a new one, use it once and then be minorly impressed by the results.  Then, I’d forget about it for a few months before I’d find it under my sink again.  I would try it out again, feel pretty meh about it and back in the cabinet it goes until it’s expired.

I’ve finally realized the importance of being consistent with it and using the correct masks at the right times.

So that would be my face mask tip…use consistently.  Maybe that’s old news to you guys, but for some reason that has always been lost on me  lol!

It makes such a HUGE difference when I face mask weekly.

So let’s get into it, shall we?

It can be a bit overwhelming when you go into the skincare section and see a million different options.  That’s why I like to pick out those sample sized face masks you can buy at Walgreens & CVS.   You can get 3-5 uses out of each little packet and they only cost a buck or 2 (they are almost always on sale).  It’s a great way to try out different types of face masks and find out what works for you.

Anti Aging Face Mask

These are also amazing to travel with.  The packaging is so slim that you can fit these things anywhere in your carry on or purse.  It’s like a face mask on the go.

The Anti-Aging Mask with almond is my favorite.  It hydrates the crap out of your skin and feels and smells soooo goooood.  Whenever I travel, I like to bring that one with me to use after I land (since airplanes dry out my skin).  This one gives my skin that supple feeling that you get after a facial.  Super hydrating.  And gets my skin vacay ready.

Brightening Sheet Mask

I recently tried the brightening sheet mask and loved the results.  It’s supposed to help with any hyperpigmentation from scarring or otherwise.  Not only did I notice results, but it felt pretty therapeutic to use.  When you’re done, you can leave the leftover serum on  your face to treat your skin while you sleep.

These sample sized masks are a great way to try a lot of different types of face masks without committing to a whole bottle.

I even came across this great article about “multi-masking”…ie using different types of face masks on different parts of your face.  This way if you have combination skin you can cater to each area.  You can use a moisturizing mask on the dry areas and detoxifying mask on breakout zones.

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What face masks do you like to use?  I’ve been dying to try those GlamGlow’s from Sephora but haven’t gotten around to it.  If you’ve tried those, are they worth it?

♦ Stephanie


Hair Essentials

These are 2 hair essentials that I love using on my 2nd or 3rd day hair.

I can’t wash my hair every day.   I just can’t.

If I do, my ends get dried out and my roots get greasy fast (It would be great if those 2 flip flopped).  By not washing every day, it saves my hair some damage, and I think it’s helped with the grease problem too.

I have a few tools, to help me get through 2nd day hair, that I always have on standby > > > Dove dry shampoo and spin pins.

Dry Shampoo & Spin Pins

Let’s start with the dry shampoo:

I’m not talking about any dry shampoo (because there are about a billion posts out there on it), but more specifically Dove’s dry shampoo.  I’ve been using dry shampoo for about 8 years now.  I started with Pssssst! and it changed my world.  I actually love the Psssst! brand that you can find at the drugstore.   It comes in 2nd place for me.  But Dove is the best!  The spray is strong and really absorbs the oils, while giving great texture to my hair.  I will even use it on clean hair when I want to add some body.  And I love that the smell is not overpowering.

The strong scent of most dry shampoos is my main problem with them.  Especially that new paraben free Herbal Essences dry shampoo.  Gag!

The Dove has a fresh smell and the product works great.  It’s also the most budget friendly of all the dry shampoos.  So that’s an added bonus :)

Now for spin pins:

Spin pins are fantastic.  1 spin pin does the work of about 15 bobby pins.  You just throw your hair up and twist it into a bun and then you screw the pin in.  I will use 2 and cross them like a plus sign +

This is great for when it’s time for the messy bun or a ballerina bun.  Just throw a bun up on your head and spin those babies in.  I can put them in first thing in the morning and I won’t have to redo my hair all day.

I also love to use them to get my hair out of the way when I’m cooking or lounging on the couch.  They don’t do any damage to your hair (which most hair ties and bobby pins can do) and they hold everything in place.

Dry Shampoo and Spin Pins

You can find both of these products almost anywhere.  I’ve seen them at Walgreens, CVS, Target, the grocery store, and I’ve even seen spin pins at the Dollar Store < < If you find them there, I would recommend stocking up on them.

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Do you have any hair products that you use every day that are ‘must-haves’??  I’ve already talked about my other hair essential, the Tangle Teezer, that I’m still passionately in love with it.

♦ Stephanie