The last thing I need is another lip gloss.  I have dozens of them.  With that said......I'm going to pick up one more.

Why? Because this lip gloss keeps appearing in my life and I'm finally going to take the hint.  Everyone raves about this drugstore gloss and it's now time for me jump on the bandwagon.
It all began when Kendra Bailey released her full skin reggie video.  I've been on a few of her Instagram lives and people were always asking what product she uses on her lips which always appear so naturally hydrated. Imagine my surprise when she revealed that her holy grail lip balm was by a brand we all know and love.

Once the secret was revealed, I filed that piece of information away until later.  Shortly afterward, this image flashed across my Pinterest feed.
After poking around a little in the comments I was bombarded by a bunch of people who praised the wonders of this amazing gloss-balm.

This stuff is AMAZING! it seriously makes your lips feel so good. It has like this cooling effect and it smells so good and it makes my lips look so good. I recommend this 10/10
This stuff is the bomb and smells soooo good! Can be used as lip balm AND a gloss!

I have tried this and it’s definitely a great moisturizer for the lips 👄 through these cold months!
My favorite love it

I stand by this lip gloss its sooo good!

I tried it and I love it! Super moisturizing
Not only is this lip gloss "super moisturizing," it's also enriched with SPF.  Warmer days are ahead which means we'll be spending more time outside.   If you're like me, you might be making the fatal mistake of layering sunscreen on your face but leaving your lips to fend for themselves.  I have one lip balm enriched with SPF but it does a poor job of hydrating and I barely use it.  Neutrogena Moisture Shine seems like the ultimate solution to all of my woes.

I'm picking some up today.

The other day I was browsing a forum where one of the ladies wanted to share something that she noticed.  To help boost her immune system, and help fight a stubborn cold, she loaded up on her vitamin C intake.

Taking in all of that vitamin C was supposed to help her recover from her cold, but instead, it gave her incredible skin that she had to rave about.
Specifically, she noticed brighter skin that appeared smooth and poreless.  Her hypothesis was that these changes were brought about by her copious intake of vitamin C. Since she wasn't able to maintain her skin regimen while feeling sick, she believed the antioxidant intake make a huge impact on her skin.

Is she right?

We all know that using vitamin C infused serums could help brighten our skin. But what about taking it internally?

 Here's some information that sheds some light on the role of ingested vitamin C and the skin:

  • Both the dermis and the epidermis contain high levels of vitamin C.  The epidermis (outer most layer of the skin) has a higher vitamin C content.  
  • As we age, vitamin C levels on the skin will decline.  
  • Excessive sun exposure also depletes vitamin C stores. 
  • Taking vitamin C internally can help the skin combat photoaging (aging caused by the sun's rays).
  • Vitamin C deficiency results in a skin condition known as scurvy.
  • Scurvy is essentially the breaking down of collagen and results in skin issues, receding gums, changes in our hair and poor wound healing.
A study determined that higher intake of vitamin C resulted in the healthier, younger appearance of the skin.  This is the confirmation we need to support the woman's claim that increasing her vitamin C intake could have caused the transformation of her skin.  

Let's not forget how important the role of vitamin C plays in collagen formation. It basically helps increase the levels of Type I collagen in the skin.  It's used directly in the collagen-building process. So whenever new collagen is formed, our vitamin C levels deplete.  After helping to build collagen, vitamin C goes one step further to help protect it from attack by free-radicals. Basically, vitamin C preserves our bodies from breaking down. 

It appears that vitamin C is well received when placed topically on the skin so if you don't have a vitamin C serum, you need to get one, stat!  But we need to take it a step further and make sure we're eating a diet rich in vitamin C or supplementing at the very least.  For those us who are fans of collagen supplements, we need to take our vitamin C intake seriously.  

Let this woman's testimony be a source of inspiration for us to make vitamin C a priority.  Perhaps vitamin C can help take our skin to the next level. Not just during cold and flu season but all year round.  And if you need more motivation, let me remind you that vitamin C can also help you reach your healthy weight goals as well.  

Lately, I've been obsessed with finding the perfect pinkish-nude nail polish.  For the past few years, I've pretty much relied on my staple nail polish -- Essie's Sand Tropez.  I own several bottles and I believe everyone should have this color in their collection.

But lately, my eyes have been set on a different shade of nude.  Before we know it, spring will be here.  We must prepare now by finding out perfect pinky nude.

The shade you see in the picture above is of OPI's Tickle My Fance-y.  I love this shade because it's muted pink that works perfectly with brown skin.  It's a subtle, yet bold color that I absolutely must try.

Next on my list of potential shades to try is Essie's Princess Charming. As you can see, this polish looks great on pretty much any skin tone.  Plus, I love Essie's formula so this one is definitely a yes for me.
I'm not sure the name of the polish in this image but I have begun the search.  Currently, I've got my eye on Essie's Ladylike or Essie's Gel Couture in Touch Up (pictured below).

 According to the product description, Essie's Gel Couture can last up to 14 days.  No lamp required.  For this reason alone, I think I'll experiment with their gel couture line first before trying hues from others.

Now that I have my running list of potential pinky nudes, next I search for the perfect red polish and my list will be complete.  Once I have a roundup of my favorite red's, I'll be sure to share.

If you're still looking for the perfect neutral shade, make sure to check out this post.

I'm becoming a huge fan of Etude House's collagen-based hydrating products.  My love affair began when I stumbled their Collagen Lotion Emulsion.  It's a lightweight lotion with super-hydration powers.

From there, I decided to graduate to a richer, thicker formula. So I moved on to their collagen cream.  I purchased this product during the warmer months and found it to be too rich and nourishing.  But, when winter came along, this cream and I became inseparable.  It's rich and creamy yet easily melts into the skin, hydrating it in an instant.

Since I was striking gold with Etude House products, I decided to go through their selection on Amazon to see if I was missing out.  Little did I know that I would soon stumble upon of my favorite purchases yet.
Prior to scouting my next purchase, I set an intention to find a hydrating product that also produced a natural, soft, dewy glow.  I didn't search long before I stumbled on exactly what I was looking for.

Etude House's Collagen Multi-Stick is unlike anything I currently own.  Sure, I have other beauty products in stick form but none of them are like this.  Let me explain.

1. I own a couple Haloscope highlighter sticks from Glossier. One thing I love about them is the wax/oil based center. This helps it provide additional shimmer on the skin but they don't really hydrate.
2. I've also love cocoa butter sticks which do an amazing job at attacking areas of intense dryness with a rich layer of nourishing butter.

Neither of these compare to Etude's Moisture stick.  Etude's stick has no actual shimmer. But it leaves behind the most naturally dewy skin imaginable.  Etude's stick isn't wax/butter based. It's like applying hydrating moisture directly on the skin in a way that isn't oily or greasy.

Prior to purchasing, I searched for reviews and found on a few.  Even though I couldn't find too many video reviews on Youtube, those I did find were highly favorable.  So I took the plunge.  Weeks later, the item arrived (directly from Korea, I assume). From the moment I first tested the collagen stick, I've been hooked.

This product is perfect for applying over your moisturizer.  In this incredibly dry air, it doesn't take long for our skin to drink up moisturizers.  Etude houses' stick can help seal in moisture (like layering an oil) without leaving the skin oily or overly shiny.  It too will be absorbed into the skin as time goes on but, upon initial application, it leaves behind the most natural looking, dewy glow.

I haven't even brought up the most amazing aspect of this product yet.  What really sold me was that collagen was the main ingredient.  In fact, collagen is the first ingredient listed and makes up more than 50% of the contents.  Will rubbing a hydrating collagen stick directly on the skin make your wrinkles go away? Who knows.  But it couldn't hurt. Right?

We already have a bunch hydrating skin products in your possession. But how many of them consist mainly of skin-plumping collagen?

  Lastly, I'm also completely enamored with the packaging which makes it easy to take with me wherever.  This stick is never far from me. I love applying and reapplying around my under eye, forehead wrinkles, nasal labial folds, and areas where I experience the most dryness.  I even apply a little on the skin after putting on makeup if I need to add a little hydration and dewiness to the skin.

Shout out to these ladies who helped convinced to me to take the plunge.

It's been a while since I've done an Instagram Beauty Secrets roundup.  One reason for this is because I want to keep the integrity of posts to ensure that these are beauty products that celebrities & Instagrammers actually love.  Nothing #sponsored here.

Let's get started!
Hannah Bronfman (pictured above) is no stranger here. We've already peeked insider of her fridge, it seems only fair to know what skin products she's obsessed with.  Not too long ago she shared an Instagram story featuring a product created by a woman with more than 20 years of development experience in the cosmetics industry.

The backstory behind this brand is that the founder discovered its main active ingredient (Centella Asiatica) while researching ways to eliminate a stubborn scar.  Essence 27 is described as "a moisturizing booster fluid which provides the skin with the moisture it needs while enhancing cell tone." I have no idea what "enhancing cell tone" means. But, if I had to guess, I suspect that it has something to do with keeping the skin cells plump and firm. That's why they load this product with hyaluronic acid, known for its uber moisture retention properties.  Centella extract is been shown to have a positive effect on wound healing and collagen synthesis.  I would've loved to have a serum like this back when I was suffering from cystic acne.  All I cared about was finding products to reduce/eliminate acne.  I didn't even think about using serums that helped the skin to properly repair and heal.  Years later, I'm spending lots of money to correct these deeper scars.  Looking at the price point, this is definitely a splurge item.  But, for what it claims to do, it could be a great investment.  Anytime someone with great skin gets excited about a product, I listen because it means that they notice a real difference even though their skin was already perfect.

Here's a vid featuring Hannah as she runs through her morning skin routine.

Did you notice all the steps involved? Here's a rundown of all the products used.

  • Line Botancials Cleanser
  • Lotion P50 from Biologique Reserche
  • Niod Copper Activator
  • Cosmetic 27 Essence + their Eye Cream
  • Bloodcream from Dr. Barbara Sterm


Mega-makeup influencer Amrezy Olevic is known for creating flawless makeup looks.  Everyone knows that in order to create a flawless look, one must start with a flawless face.  I follow her on Snapchat and have seen her without makeup countless times.  This woman's skin is impeccable. For the longest time, she never shared any of her favorite skin care products. day.....she posted this with the simple caption "New Favorite Mask."
The highlight of this mask is that it both DETOXIFIES and BRIGHTENS most detoxifying masks clean your pores and that's it.  But Brilliant Skin claims to do both. We know that the pink clay will cleanse deeply but how does the mask brighten?  According to the brand, it brightens by helping to prevent free radical damage via ingredients like mangosteen and kelp.  If you're in the market for a clay-based mask that also brightens through exfoliation you may want to check out this brand which features pink clay + rice enzymes to gently exfoliate the skin.  It's also about half the price.

I check in on Sheneka's SnapChat stories because this woman a great example of consistency.  She works out almost on a daily basis and she enjoys the finer things in life.  Every so often, she'll share a glimpse of her favorite beauty items.
Years ago, when I first learned of the benefits of collagen, I tried and fell in love with, collagen chews.  It seems as if Sheneka is also a fan of these chewy anti-aging treats.  Hers seem way more powerful than the ones I tried.  These Collagen Replenish chews also contain hyaluronic acid to preserve internal moisture and vitamin C which is essential for collagen building.   

Sheneka deemed them as one of her best-kept beauty secrets.  I co-sign on the goodness of collagen.  If you haven't jumped on the bandwagon yet, I suggest you start soon. Sheneka is under the age of 30 and she's already ahead of the game.  Don't wait until you start noticing collagen loss to supplement.  Collagen decline starts at around 20. Once we hit 30, the rate of loss increases and it only gets worse from there.  Take Sheneka's advice of supplementing now so you can thank her later.