The Art Of The Double Cleanse

When people hear about double cleansing, they tend to get this baffled look on their faces. It seems that the double cleansing process goes against everything we’ve been taught about skin care. It’s been drilled into us that we need to avoid stripping our skin of all those lovely natural oils, and many assume double cleansing will do just that. Fret not, double cleaning won’t strip your skin at all. In fact, double cleansing is the secret our skincare routines have been missing.

Double cleansing isn’t just using your cleaner and washing your face twice. In reality, double cleansing is about making sure all the dirt, grime, pollution and make-up is removed from your skin in two distinct steps that results in ultra-clean skin. Without properly cleansing your face, any serums, oils, and moisturizers you apply won’t fully absorb into the skin because they will be sitting on top any residual makeup and dirt that single cleaning leaves behind.

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xo, Lara Sophia

 

Smelling Like Roses

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My daily shower is my special place, a little quiet time where I can unwind and wash away the day. I light a candle, blast some music and try my hardest to make my shower routine as relaxing as possible. A step that I added to my routine quite some time ago adds the perfect amount of luxury to my mostly mundane shower routine.

Lush’s Ro’s Argan Body Conditioner is a little tub of rose scented heaven. The blush-colored creamy conditioner makes your skin super soft and smelling all sorts of good.

Ro’s Argan is an in-shower lotion that does for your body what conditioner does for your hair. Made up of cocoa butter, cupuaca buttle, almond and argan oils and fresh rose petals it’s a moisturizing treat for your skin.

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While I wouldn’t say the Ro’s Argan Body Conditioner is a necessity to have it sure is a nice luxury. Whether you use it every day or just for special occasions, it’s a nice little extra that actually simplifies your routine. Ro’s Argan is so hydrating and makes your skin so soft there’s no need to apply lotion after your shower.

I love that the Ro’s Argan Body Conditioner washes away easily and doesn’t leave a film on my skin. The biggest selling point for me is that post-shower I have soft, hydrated rose-scented skin.

xo, Lara Sophia

 

Total Nirvana

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If you grew up in the Olsen dominated 90′s and early 2000′s and were anything like me you just HAD to have everything and anything the Olsen twins wore.

I’d dare to say that the Olsen twins were my first fashion inspiration besides Cher from Clueless, and I often emulated everything they wore down to their haircuts.

Not much has changed a decade later as I still look to Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen for style inspiration. When MK & A released their Elizabeth and James line in 2007, and I oohed and ahhed over it until I was blue in the face. It wasn’t until they released their White and Black Nirvana scents that I purchased a piece from the collection.

Basically, MaryKate and Ashley took the entire essence of their Elizabeth and James brand and bottled it in scent form.

So far, I can only speak to the White Nirvana scent but it’s a simple, feminine, chic scent that’s just a little bit sexy. In fact, the scent is very reminiscent of the Chloé Eau de Parfum by Chloé, which happens to be one of my favorite scents.

White Nirvana is described as a mix of “delicate peony, chic muguet, tender musk for a feminine scent with dark sophistication.” I would say that is exactly what you get from the scent.

This scent is fabulous. I was sold after hearing peony was one of the scents major notes since I’m a sucker for peony. White Nirvana is a great day scent that stays with you but isn’t too overwhelming. Plus I love that it can be layered with Black Nirvana to create another scent entirely. Three scents for the price of two is a plus in my book.

Most importantly who wouldn’t want to smell like the chicness that is MaryKate and Ashley Olsen?

xo, Lara Sophia

Hangover Helpers

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We’ve all had those nights where we’ve had one too many drinks and wind up paying for it the next morning. With St. Paddy’s Day upon us I figured it would be the perfect time to talk about hangover helpers. These little gems can take you from looking like a Mac truck hit you to looking like you got plenty of beauty sleep the night before.

When trying to beat the hangover look and feeling it’s always crucial to reach for products that de-puff, soothe and hydrate the skin.

First things first, pop an Advil, trust me it will help you. After doing the boring stuff like washing your face and brushing your teeth, it’s time to move on to making yourself look a whole lot better.

When I’m feeling a little bit puffy in the eye area, I reach for the GlamGlow Bright Mud Eye Treatment. The mud in these little pods has this cooling/tingling effect that wakes up your eye area and gets rid of the bags. Before jumping in the shower pop on a revitalizing mask, right now I’m testing out the Nugg Revitalizing Face Mask, and it works pretty well especially for a drugstore mask. Make sure whatever mask you reach for will plump the skin and wake up tired, dull skin since that’s the goal. Once you’re out of the shower, it’s time to apply the final mask. I can’t say this enough, but the Bliss Triple Oxygen Instant Energizing Mask is one of the best out there. I’ve been using this mask since I was 18 or 19 so for me it’s a Holy Grail product that I always need to have in my skin care arsenal. The Bliss Oxygen mask brightens up your skin immediately and makes you look beyond glowy and well-rested.

Once you’re done waking your skin up and making it look hella good, it’s time to moisturize the heck out of it. Always start with eye cream. I often reach for the SK-II Advanced Eye Treatment because it’s eye serum. In my opinion, it also doubles as a leave on treatment. This eye treatment is super-hydrating while not being sticky or irritating. Finally, seal it all in with a good day cream. Currently, I’m obsessed with the First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream because it soothes and hydrates the skin extremely well.

Finish off your morning with lots of coffee, mascara, and concealer. Throw on some dark sunnies, and no one will ever know about last night’s antics.

Enjoy St. Paddy’s Day and remember we’re all a wee bit Irish today :)

xo, Lara Sophia

Drunk Elephant Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil

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Drunk Elephant’s Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil is in a league of its own. Marula is an intoxicating fruit that elephants eat and get drunk off of, hence the name Drunk Elephant. Turns out the oil in the Marula fruit offers more benefits than just getting elephants drunk. Marula oil is a hydrating, anti-oxidant filled oil that gives skin an amazing glow.

DE’s Marula oil has been a skin savior during these last few weeks of winter. It has a beautiful, dry oil texture that melts right into your skin and absorbs so quickly you’ll almost forget you put it on. There is no greasy residue or wait time when applying this oil. I find this oil a dream to apply under my daily moisturizer for an added dose of hydration. Personally I love dry oils, and this oil is so reminiscent of one. While this oil works amazingly well in the cold, winter months it really strikes me as an all year oil. In fact, I think I’m going to be loving this oil in the spring and summer as well. It’s an oil that doesn’t make you feel oily if that makes sense.

Marula oil is vegan, natural, and cruelty-free if that kind of thing matters to you. While I don’t pay much attention to parabens and sulfates, this oil is void of all of them. DE’s Marula oil has a very luxurious feel to it which is something I think most natural skin care products are lacking.

Whether you live for natural, vegan beauty products or you love high-end beauty products this is an oil you want in your skin care regimen.

xo, Lara Sophia

Spring Bags

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Spring is right around the corner, so you know what that means? New bags! This season it seems that it’s all about blush toned nudes and creamy pastels. I was surprised at how popular nude was this season since spring usually means bright, cheerful colors. Personally, I love a more muted color palette for spring(and in general). I’m a huge blush and nude fan, so these bags are right in my wheelhouse.

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xo, Lara Sophia

Spring/Summer 2015 Hair Color Trends

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With a new season comes new hair color. Spring is mere days away, and many of us are looking for ways to change and brighten up our looks. Hair color is an easy, and fun way switch things up. Here are the top hair color trends for spring and summer 2015.

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Platinum Blonde

Last week when Kim Kardashian went platinum she officially made it fashionable again. I think this color is going to be the it color for the fashion forward crowd. Rocking Platinum Blonde takes lots of confidence and upkeep, but it makes you stand out like nobody business. Believe me I have some major hair envy when it comes to Kim and her platinum hair.

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Rich Redhead

This is the season for deep, strong red hair colors. Red hair can be customized to fit every skin tone. Plus the spectrum of red colors ranges from deep ruby reds to rich coppery tones, so there’s bound to be a color that fits your look.

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Not So Basic Brunette

Most people yawn at the sight of solid colored hair, but this season you can make waves with the solid color hair movement. While everyone else is busy getting highlights and ombre you will stand out with rich monochromatic hair.

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Baby Highlights

Remember those gorgeous sun-kissed blonde highlights your hair would get from the sun as a kid? Well that’s what baby lights are. Think subtle, natural blonde highlights. Shy away from chunky, obvious highlights. This look is all about taking your natural (or colored, shh I won’t tell) hair and enhancing it.

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Blonded Brunette

No brunette should ever be afraid of adding blonde to their hair. There have been so many celebrities and models that have proved and inspired us that brunette can totally rock blonde highlights. The way to do the blonde brunette look right is to go with  a balayage effect for your highlights. It’s all about creating face framing blonde highlights that brighten and lighten the bottom sections of dark hair.

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What’s your favorite spring/summer hair trend?

xo, Lara Sophia

Looking Wide Awake After Losing That Precious Hour of Sleep

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I don’t know about you, but I wasn’t too happy to lose an hour of sleep over the weekend. After all, a girl needs all the beauty sleep she can get. I plan on amping up my beauty routine this week until I readjust to less sleep.

Here are a few steps to help you look wide awake on less sleep.

When I know, I’m going to be getting less sleep during the night whether it’s from a late night of work or because of daylight savings time I always like to use an overnight mask. One of my favorite overnight masks is the Dr. Jart+ Water Fuse Water-Max Sleeping Mask it keeps the moisture in your skin all night long, and it’s quick-absorbing gel melts into your skin quickly.

The next morning, I like to wash my face with a moisturizing face wash. I recently received a sample of the GlamGlow ThirstyCleanse Daily Cleanser, and I love love love it. The cleanser is a unique mud to foam consistency that’s so different from every other cleanser out there. After that, I hop into the shower to wash up and apply a sheet mask. Applying face masks or sheet masks before getting in the show is an easy way to multitask and save some time in the morning. One of my favorite sheet masks is the moisturizing Dr. Jart+ Water-Fuse Hydrogel Mask. Just like the Dr. Jart+ overnight mask the sheet mask in the Water-Fuse line offers a ton of moisture to the skin. This sheet mask plumps your skin to make it look extra glowy.

After the shower, I spritz some dry shampoo into my dry hair and throw it up in a ponytail to create some extra volume. I enjoy Dry Bar’s Triple Sec 3 in 1 dry shampoo because it’s a volumizer, texturizer, and dry shampoo in one.

Now let’s move on to the face. I apply my face cream, and after it sinks into my skin I apply foundation. Currently, my skin is loving the First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream and the Bare Minerals Complexion Rescue. Both products have helped soothe my winter skin and leave me with radiant and hydrated looking skin.

The next three products are my total favorites because they are products that you can swipe and go. The YSL Touché Éclat is my favorite highlighter because it’s natural but also can double as a concealer for the under eye area. I can easily hide how tired I look with the Touché Éclat. When it comes to trying to look awake I usually skip eyeshadow and just focus mascara, my go-to is YSL Faux-Cils Mascara. Plus I throw on a bold lip to detract from my hopefully covered dark circles. I suggest NARS Satin Lip Pencil in Yu which is my favorite bright pink lipstick.

Finally, I take my ponytail and add a bun donut to complete a simple sock bun that I secure with bobby pins.

And voila no one will know how tired you really are!

What are your favorite products to help you look more awake?

xo, Lara Sophia