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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Product Review: Giovanni Direct Leave-In

I tried my first product by Giovanni about a year and a half ago and since then, I have been completely enamored with the brand. I've tried nearly all the products from Giovanni's Eco Chic line (reviews coming, I promise) but this one in particular seemed to elude me.  Every where I went, whether it be Target, Walmart, etc., I'd look for the Giovanni Direct Leave-In Conditioner but to no avail.  Finally, as I perused the Target near my home, I spotted it! I scurried over and threw it in the basket--at last I would try it!  I felt like I'd won an award.  How about after I used the product?


Ingredients:

 Aqua (purified water), aloe barbadensis (aloe vera), leaf juice, *rosmarinus officinalis (rosemary) leaf extract, *urtica dioica (nettle) extract, *thymus vulgaris (thyme) extract, *chamomilla recutita (matricaria) extract, *salva scalrea (clary) leaf extract, *lavandula angustifolia (lavender) extract, *achillea millefolium(yarrow) extract, *equisetum arvenese extract, * glycine soja (soybean) seed extract, cetyl alcohol (plant derived), tocopherol (vitamin E), panthenol (pro-vitamin B5), citric acid (corn), phenoxyethanol, grapefruit seed (citrus derived) and natural fragrance.
*Certified organic by guaranteed organic certification agency.

This is a PARABEN-FREE Product.


Product Description:

  • Weightless Moisture
  • Pure Organic Technology
  • For All Hair Types
Enriched with Certified Organic Botanicals. Direct Leave-in Conditioner restores strength, luster, and nourishment; moisturizes and builds body; and detangles.

To create condition and style, you need to go direct to the source. Direct Leave-in Conditioner goes directly into each hair to provide both. This leave-in treatment repairs hair as you go through the day. It also has the added benefit of plumping up each repaired hair so that it feels thicker. More bodified. This conditioner infuses each individual hair with proteins. Pumps it up. Goes directly to style.


My Experience:

Weightless moisture is right!  I've styled my hair in two strand twists, bantu knots and flat twists with the Direct Leave-in and each time, my hair felt soft, light and well-moisturized.  My hair didn't dry out the next day or even after I went 4 days without re-moisturizing my hair.

I didn't have to use much of the product at all to get great results.  Just a nickle-sized amount of the Direct Leave-in for every 2-inch section of hair was enough and I probably could have used even less because a little of this stuff really does go a long way. 

The Direct Leave-in barely has any scent at all so for those of you that don't like heavily scented hair products, this one is definitely worth a try.

Giovanni Direct Leave-in is non-sticky and also works well with other products.  I've used it with my Shea Moisture products and my Taliah Waajid Lock It Up Gel with no adverse reactions.  I'll definitely be purchasing this product again and it'll be BEFORE I run out my current bottle.


Price & Rating:


5/5 Stars for sure!

I paid $7.99 for 8.5oz at Target
Recently, I found out that Giovanni products are also available on Vitacost.com at a fraction of the price where the Direct Leave-in is only $4.64.

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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

To Be Seen And Not Heard

A Kim Kardashian Inspired Makeup Look

 [Source]


I'd been itching to try out my pink lip gloss by Rock & Republic but was clueless as to how I should wear it.  Then I stumbled across this gorgeous picture of Kim Kardashian on renowned make up artist Troy Jensen's blog and got inspired.  Now, I'm not Troy Jensen of course but I think I did well.
I'm usually the type of woman that likes to be seen and not heard but in this case, I'll be the "Loudmouth".

What I Used:

Eyes:
Lid & Crease: 3 neutral shades from CS 26 palette
Highlight: MAC Ricepaper
Liner: Maybelline Line Express Liner Pencil- Black
NYX Liquid Liner - Black
Charcoal shadow from CS 26 palette

Cheeks:
Highlight: Black Radiance Bronzer/ Highlight Quad
Blush: #4 Blush from CS 26 palette
Contour: Sephora "Blush Me!" Trio

Lips:
Liner: Rimmel 1000 Kisses - Cherry Kiss


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Get Out of Your Own Way




I'd recently corresponded with a fellow blogger whose writing I'd come to admire. Being a writer who has been frequently in and out of the writer's block funk for the past year and half, I began to wonder how she stays fresh with her writing and what she does when she not feeling "so creative". She simply told me she indulges in the creativity of others and then she asked the question right back.

My reply among a few other things, "I cry."

Surely, I jest but the more I thought about it, the truth is that old wimpering sound (sans tears) has released itself from my body on more than one occasion. This non-verbal but perfectly audible complaint is simply the result of being interrupted more times than I can count during my writing sessions. Some time in the last six months, I'd began to wonder why the hell I wasn't writing as much. I couldn't figure out what the heck was wrong with me until one day in particular:

I sat down at the table determined to make it my best writing day ever. I began to type and was excited about what was going down and as I bore deeper into my concentration, I felt a pat on my leg. My beautiful son asking to get in my lap. I resisted for a few minutes with "mommy's trying to work, baby" but eventually I lost the fight as the gentle requests turned into whining, stomping pleads. Next thing I know, Chief is having a full blown conversation with me about some sports show and my son is banging on the keyboard.

As all this is going on, underneath my placid exterior, I'm screaming "This is the hell why I can't get anything done!"

Desperate to at least finish a whole chapter in one night, I was finally able to retreat to the bedroom to hopefully get something done. On the way into my bedroom, I caught a glimpse of my poor notebook under the bed. Neglected. My new notebook that I'd purchased 2 years ago was barely half full when ordinarily I'd have purchased at least 2 more notebooks since then and filled them up. As I heard the sound of my son's voice from down the hall getting closer I realized that times have changed.

I'm no longer the 23 year-old living on her own with lots of time on her hands to write. That girl is long gone; I'm now a mom and soon-to-be wife. I miss that girl sometimes but nothing can replace the love of that little boy that calls me mommy--oh yeah, I wouldn't trade my man in for anything either :-p.

So after thinking about all this last week, I realized that I never made any REAL adjustments to this new life as far as my writing goes. I felt sad about it all thinking that my dream would never be fulfilled if I continued on this path. So I did what I usually do during times like this. I called my mommy. LOL!

I complained and complained and she listened and listened. And when I was done she asked, " So what adjustments do you have to make to your lifestyle in order for you to meet your goals?"

Not what I was expecting but exactly what I needed.

During our conversation she told me a few things:

1. In order to meet goals one must create a schedule to work toward specifically that goal and just DO IT, even if it means staying up late on the weekdays.

2. By complaining you do nothing but get in your own way. You complain and then the next things you know it's 2 years later and you're still complaining about the same time and still nothing is done.

3. I order for your dreams to manisfest, you have to make a way for it to happen.

4. In order for you to get the time you need, you must speak up say what you want. (ask-and-ye--shall-receive, much?)

5. Associate yourself with people who have the same interests at least once a week if you can't do it all the time.

6. And this is a repeat: Get out of your own way! Stop complaining and FIND a way to make it happen.

Since that day, I've written every other day without fail for 1.5 hours after MJ has gone to sleep for the night and I've even found time to play in my make up and continue going to the gym...oh yea, and blog :-).


Thought of the Day:

Often, it is not your situation but your attitude and actions (or none there of) towards such situations that will determine whether or not you meet your goals and fulfill your dreams.

No one and nothing can hold you back but YOU.
 
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Monday, March 14, 2011

Bantu Knots - An Old Favorite

It's been more than a year since I've done my hair with Bantu Knots and I'd forgotten how pleasing the results are. Although I really missed doing this style, I'd also remembered why I don't like doing it. It took 22 hours to dry completely and I thought I was doing myself justice but doing it in the early afternoon the day before I needed it to be dry. Next time, I'll do it Friday night to be ready for Sunday.

To achieve this style, I used a nickle-sized amount of Giovanni Diret Leave-In and a dab of Naptural85's (from youtube) Sticky Pomade on each section. I finger parted my hair in undefined sections (about 15). Two-strand twisted my hair in each section and then twisted the twist until it curled up on itself and tucked the end. At night I secured the knots with bobby pins to make sure they wouldn't unravel while I was sleeping.










Check out the video



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Saturday, March 12, 2011

Rock & Republic Cosmestics



At the end of January, Rock&Republic was having an amazing cosmetics sale on RockandRepublic.com.  Shadows that are originally $28 were on sale for $14 and lip glosses that are originally $26 were on sale for $13 and I lucked up on a promo code to get an additional 50% off to boot!  How exciting is that: Luxury brand cosmetics for a fraction of the original cost!

Right along with brands like Makeup Forever and NARS, R&R is well worth the price with it's beautiful-and-oh-you-fancy-huh?-packaging and huge pans.  Just the fact alone that R&R offers more shadow in one pan(.11oz) than MUF (.08oz), NARS(.07oz) & MAC(.05oz) justifies the price tag.

The highly pigmented shadows are silky to the touch and don't crumble when you rub over them--a definite plus as it lessens the chance for product to be wasted.  It took very little effort for me to swatch the true color on my arm.

Now the lipglosses are no lightweights also coming in at .11 fluid ounces.  The lipgloss "Loudmouth" is the perfect ultra bright pink that I'd been looking for and I can't wait to wear it!

I have to say that I'm completely happy with this purchase and definitely will be purchasing more.  I'm even willing to pay full price but since I now know about what great sales R&R tends to have with their cosmetics, I'll be anxiously anticipating the notification!

L-R: Lipgloss "Loudmouth",  Lipgloss "Trainwreck", Shadow "Twisted", Shadow "Electric"

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Thursday, March 3, 2011

Pinned Up Twists -- The Laziest Hairstyle

Why is it that when I decide to do the most lazy hairstyle EVER, I get the most compliments on it?

My hair has been like this since Saturday night--here it is Thursday night and it's a little more fuzzy than at the beginning of the week but yesterday and today were when I got the most compliments on it.  I wasn't going for style, I was just going for convenience.

When I got the first couple of compliments I was like, "Huh?  For real?" LOL!

My hair ended up in this style because I washed my hair on Saturday night instead of my usual Friday night and twisted my hair while it was soaking wet.  Not to mention I finished it all at 2AM.  You know what that meant: Sunday morning, it wasn't dry in time for take down and not being in any particular mood to fight with frizzy hair, I decided to break out my bobbi pins and get to pinning.  I was so upset about my hair not being dry that I had the attitude of "Forget it. I'm tired of this hair".  I actually didn't care how it was going to look, I just thought I'd wear it like this until we got out of church but I ended up leaving it like this all week.

...And if this is not the quintessential protective style, I don't know what is:




...and if this is not the quintessential protective style, I don't know what is:

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