January 2011

5 Beauty Drugstore Buys


00nivea I've been happily making impulse buys on errand trips to my local Rite Aid and CVS. Lucky for you, I've weeded out the bad decisions, so now I present you with five cheap and affordable everyday beauty items that anyone can use.

Nivea Creme ($1). If this little tin of moisturizing goodness isn't in your bag right now, you're missing out. This thick cream is the most amazing thing your dry skin will ever experience. 

Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Nail Color ($4). Two things I dislike about painting my nails: 1) I hate applying two coats, and 2) I hate waiting for them to dry. Well, Sally Hansen nixes both of those issues with this fast-drying formula, and you only need to apply one coat! My nails are currently sporting Mint Sprint.

Aquaphor Lip Repair ($4.29). For lips that are chapped, chafed or cracked, a little dab of this soothing ointment will make your once kissable lips super soft again.  

Revlon Just Bitten Lip Stain ($9). Lip stains have a tendency to dry out your pucker, but Revlon solves that problem with a double-ended applicator that boasts a balm on one side.

Finesse Leave In Hair Treatment ($5). Usually, my hair is super oily, but it's been a rough, cold winter and the dry air makes my hair staticky, so I end up with unsightly flyaways. This leave-in fortifying treatment is for thin, brittle hair, but a couple of spritzes on my coif makes my hair stay put all day.

Adspecs: Adjustable Glasses For All


Visionchart I have a story follow-up. Almost two years ago, we posted an item about a pair of affordable glasses that would adjust to the needs of the wearer by using water as a magnifying agent. The inventor, Dr. Josh Silver, hoped to create these glasses for people in underdeveloped countries. Since this  initial story, he's still been working away, and has improved upon his creation. They are now called Adspecs.

Today, the glasses work by using oil instead of water, but the concept is still the same: you add oil in between two lenses, and that alters the strength needed for the wearer.

Testing of Adspecs are truly incredible: 92 percent were able to correct their nearsightedness! Right now, a pair costs $19, which is still a pricey tag, but Dr. Silver hopes to get that cost down to $1, and to distribute 1 billion pairs by 2020. One apparent downside to the glasses are their nerd-like, less-than-fashionable frames. Two words: Harry Potter.

RED Hearts: Dressing Russian


Earmuffs RED Hearts are guests posts on I Heart Daily from the authors of RED: Teenage Girls in America Write On What Fires Up Their Lives Today.

RED Hearts post is by Charlotte Steinway , 22, reporting from New York City on Russian style by way of the Big Apple:

Although I've been feeling particularly inspired by the arctic chill that has graced the eastern US, it wasn’t until a birthday party last Friday night that I discovered an actual antidote to sub-zero temperatures: dressing Russian. And I’m not talking about Thousand Island’s condiment cousin.

When my friend sent out the invitation, I expected the evening to follow the implicit NYC birthday recipe: dinner with close friends, followed by a larger gathering with the dinner guests, plus extraneous Facebook friends. However, I was thrilled to find out she was hosting a highly original themed party -- a Russian birthday celebration to take place in Brighton Beach, the part of Coney Island largely populated by immigrants from the former Soviet Union.

And, while I did have a stomach full of pierogis quelling my chill, I do believe it was my clothing choice that kept me lively on that nine-degree night. From there on, I’ve pledged to combat the cold by mimicking Moscow style.

Traditional Russian costume is comprised of decadent fabrics -- think embroidery, velvet, and fur (go faux to save you from debt and PETA altercations) -- and large doses of rich, tsar-ish hues like purple and red. Headgear is a must, and topping my mid-winter most-wanted list is a faux fur halo and Pokemon-esque ear accessories (pictured). Either or both would pair nicely with the $7 floor-length burgundy velour dress I found at my neighborhood Goodwill. Add a pair of chunky booties like these or these and I’ll be set, chicly swaddled and oligargh-awesome.

Now all I need is a first-edition Tolstoy, a jar of caviar and a set of nesting dolls to get me through February.


RedRED Hearts guest poster Charlotte Steinway  is an author of  RED: Teenage Girls in America Write On What Fires Up Their Lives Today, now available in paperback. 

Two Winter Lip Balms to Love


Brew It's lip balm season, man. My pucker is all cracked, all the time. I like to fill my coat pockets and my bags with various lip soothers, and I've found two favorites this winter.

Crazy Rumors has a "Brew" line of hot-tea inspired balms ($4 each, pictured) -- it includes Peppermint Lemongrass, Orange Bergamot, Apple Spice and Spiced Chai. I know, fancy, right?! Each one not only soothes your lips, but also kinda makes you feel like you're treating yourself to a deliciously warm beverage. Caffeine lovers, they also have a coffee line, "Perk" -- and all of their products are made with natural, vegan-friendly ingredients. Snag a set of 4 for $15. We think Wills and Kate would approve.

When you need a little more moisture power, Crabtree & Evelyn's new Ultra-Moisturizing Butters ($7.50 each) do the trick. With four types of butters (shea, cocoa, illipe and kokum), plus mango oil, beeswax and other botanical ingredients -- they seal in some serious soothing. Plus, if you dab some lightly over your lipstick, it'll help lock in the color. Try Vanilla Creme Brule, Creme de Menthe or Citron Creme & Honey. Doesn't it just sound like a bakery menu? Yum!

Hear(t) It: Cold War Kids


Cold-war-kids-mine-is-yours From Long Beach, CA, Cold War Kids have built their reputation on a jagged, rough-around-the-edges sound, pounding out songs with rhythmic disturbance and jerky minimalism. So, for devoted fans of CWK, their new album, Mine Is Yours, might sound a little... different. Okay, I'll just say it: some might say that with their third full-length release, the CWK have gone "mainstream." Lost is that indie joie de vivre, but the songs? They're still pretty good.

First, it's clear that someone got their heart broken. These songs are a little (if I can still use the word) emo. Each track deals with the themes of regret, letting go, hard truths, and coming or going (listening to this album takes quite an emotional toll. Weep.). "Out Of The Wilderness," "Royal Blue," and "Bulldozer" all bear a resemblance to the sounds of Kings of Leon (they share a producer). So if you like KOL, you'll love this album.

Mine Is Yours is lush and cinematic, big and velvety, polished and shiny, and unlike their older material, these songs are meant to be played at a stadium, not at a local club. But, you see their musical roots peek through on "Cold Toes On The Cold Floor" -- minimal, dissonant, quirky.  

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