As Usual, Unpaid Reviews

Wherein I give you unsolicited advice on all manner of products and services. Hey, FTC! I received nothing from anybody! All products reviewed were purchased by me, with real (not imaginary) money.

True Lemon – True Lemon is actually not just lemon – it also comes in orange and lime! What is it? It’s basically crystallized citrus that you can carry with you anywhere, and add to water to give it a little kick. It has no calories! The flavor is fantastic! It’s all-natural! I think the orange is my favorite, though lime is close. I add it to bottled water and also to plain seltzer, but there are lots of other ways you can use this stuff: in recipes, sprinkled on salads and other food, in plain iced tea, etc. You can find True Lemon (and True Orange, and True Lime) at some grocery stores, though I haven’t had much luck and had to order mine from their online store. (They also have two varieties of lemonade mix where are really good, but only available online.) Find them on Facebook for coupons and free offers.

Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer SPF 15 – My skin tends to get oily, especially in the T-zone and especially in the summer. I’m also obsessed with protecting my skin from the sun, and wear sunscreen religiously. I’ve struggled trying to find the right tinted sunscreen (to wear alone) or moisturizer with sunscreen (to wear under other makeup) that doesn’t make my T-zone a shiny mess by 10am. I’ve tried so many, I had just about given up and resigned myself to the fact that I was just going to have to blot my face several times a day (these work great, by the way). Then I ordered something from Sephora (I don’t even remember what it was anymore), and along with it came a sample of this primer from Hourglass. Whoa – it’s a miracle! I ordered a full size bottle right away. Super pricey ($52), but one bottle will last a very long time (at least until the hot weather subsides, which should be around November). The texture is thin and liquid-like, and you can definitely feel the silicone in it. It’s nice and slippery, yet dried to a matte finish, giving you a nice canvas for makeup application. Best of all, it helps keep the oil at bay for much of the day, and I often don’t need to blot or apply additional powder until late afternoon. The sunscreen is an effective combination of zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, so it does give full-spectrum (UVA and UVB) protection. I know, I KNOW it’s a lot to spend on a primer/sunscreen/moisturizer, but I couldn’t help myself. It just feels so elegant on the skin, and it’s doing its job perfectly. To me, that is the definition of a good investment.

Clarisonic Mia – And now, the negative review. Not so much negative, as “meh.” People seemed to be raving about this powered facial brush from Clarisonic, so I decided to give it a try. And…I wasn’t impressed. Did it give me a “silky-smooth, fresh complexion”? Not so much. Actually, I think my complexion is pretty good but I chalk that up to the regular exfoliation I do on my own (scrub and washcloth), regular facials (every six weeks), and common-sense products (BHA for breakouts, retinol for anti-aging). However, I might have been willing to stick with the brush if it hadn’t been so darned inconvenient. Maybe I’m just a klutz, but every night when I used it (exactly as instructed, by the way), I ended up spraying water all over the mirror, the sink, and my shirt. Then after I was done, it had to be cleaned, and I usually had to leave it out overnight in order to dry completely (and I loathe counter top clutter). Overall, it just didn’t seem worth it, so I’ve ordered a new cleaning head and will be putting that bad boy (girl?) up on eBay this week.

Argiolas Costamolino Vermentino 2008 – Ah, booze. You make every dinner better! This is by far my favorite white wine ever, and in fact may have somewhat converted me from the red-wine-loving snob that I used to be. This lovely white is made from the Vermentino grape, courtesy of Sardinia, and it is fabulous. Seriously – if you see a bottle of this, buy it! It’s sold out on Wine.com, but I know for a fact that they still have bottles at Wegman’s. That is, unless the hubz and I have gone over there and bought them all already!

So there you go. Some stuff to sprinkle in your water, put on your face, drink with dinner, and probably NOT cleanse your skin with. Arrivederci!