Archive for December, 2008

The Morning After beauty S.O.S

Posted in skincare with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 16, 2008 by LPB

Inspirational read from http://www.journallive.co.uk by Liz Hands.

( I had edited the recommended products based on my personal encounter with those miracle lotions & potions )

Just like budgets, diets and alcohol limits, beauty regimes tend to go out of the window during the party season. Seasonal drinking, dancing and cavorting make for fun times during December but it’s our face and body that suffer on those dreaded mornings-after-the-night-before.

Luxurious beautifying mornings are replaced by a hungover scramble for any quick-fix that will leave us looking vaguely human again.

Luckily the beauty world is more than equipped to help us hide night owl habits in a flash.

Time to stock up on Alka-Seltzer and an armful of SOS after-party products.

WAKE-UP CALL

The alarm has gone off and crawling to work in your duvet is just not an option. Hit the shower for a reviving wake-up call. Avoid turning the temperature gauge into the red – a lot of moisture evaporates from your skin during a hot shower, making you even more dehydrated.

“Invigorating citrus oils can be very effective at supporting post-party recovery,” says Geraldine Howard, founder of Aromatherapy Associates.

“Pink grapefruit and rosemary are particularly good at stimulating the circulation and helping with the removal of toxins.”

TRY: Molton Brown Enlivening Toko-Yuzu Bath & Shower Gel

I personally recommend Bliss Super Minty Soap’n Scrub – this popular mammoth minty soap now comes ‘melted’ in this jojoba bead packed peppermint cooling and exfoliating soap scrub paste .

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Finished this invigorating regime with Dr Hauschka Rosemary Bath – contains essential oil of Rosemary which warms and vitalises the body; or Sage Bath – for refreshing and revitalising tired, swollen and burning feet. Helps feet which tend to feel cold and which suffer from callouses. Revitalising the entire body, especially after sport and over-exertion.

EYE BAG ALERT

If sleep has become a rare commodity during the party season, your under-eyes might resemble your Christmas shopping bags. But lack of sleep isn’t the only cause of dark circles.

“In Chinese medicine dark circles and bags under the eyes are an indication that there is stress on the kidneys, which makes sense after lots of parties and late nights,” explains Sally Penford of the International Dermal Institute.

“Look for light diffusing products. These will act like a multitude of tiny microscopic mirrors that deflect the light away from the eye and help disguise dark circles.”

TRY: MAC Fast Response Eye Cream

I believes in de-puffing eye gels, Eve Lom  Eye Serum – this concentrated, lightweight serum comes to the rescue of tired, puffy eyes. Use it morning and night and during long-haul flights to hydrate the delicate eye area, reduce dark undereye circles and smooth dry, fine lines. Euphrasia extract and camomile soothe, tone and reduce puffiness, while the mineral malachite protects against free radicals.

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 I also love Amanda Lacey Illuminating Eye Gel – with the very best, professional grade botanicals with natural proteins, anti-oxidants and age-defying technology, this silken gel works deep-down within the skin to rejuvenate, firm and lift, while micro-specks of soft focus mica adjusts light reflection to minimise the appearance of wrinkles and under eye circles. Moisture retaining mucopolysaccharide provides long-lasting hydration while soothing actives reduce bruising and puffiness.

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Also, bathing your eyes with witch hazel enriched Eyewash will shrinks those tiny blood vessels on your conjunctivae.

FACE S.O.S

Avoid magnifying mirrors at all costs after a wild night on the tiles – you don’t want to see red eyes, blotchy skin and puffy cheeks staring back at you. Ensure your face is make-up free, then begin your fresh-faced disguise.

“Achieving a public-friendly façade is the way to look at it,” says David Horne, education director at the Jemma Kidd Make Up School.

“Concealer is going to be your best friend, whether you’re backstage at a party or waking up on the hotel floor. You can mix it with your eye cream to make it more hydrating if the skin’s dry, put it straight on from the product to get more coverage or even use it as a foundation if you mix it with some moisturiser.”

TRY: Dermalogica MultiVitamin Power Recovery Masque

I loves YSL Flash Radiance Skincare Brush – With a single brush stroke, signs of fatigue are erased, and skin is left feeling velvety smooth and fresh with radiance! This high-performance formula combines all the benefits of a skincare product with the precision and ease of a brush, the silky and comfortable texture glides over the skin, leaving it feeling incredibly fresh and invigorated. A blend of energizing active ingredients combine the Grain of Paradise extract with caffeine to erase signs of fatigue. On the skin’s surface, light-reflecting micro-pigments are able to capture and diffuse light, to reduce skin imperfections and boost radiance. 

A seaweed derived sugar forms a veil that maintains moisture on the surface of the skin and protects it against external threats. Wheat proteins combined with sugar extracted from oats and a silcon elastomer allow for the formula to quickly smooth fine lines, leaving it feeling soft and velvety. 

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Finish with Armani Face Fabric Second Skin Nude Makeup SPF 12.

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The last thing you want is a thick, pasty, cakey complexion that highlights all the sins; So i strongly recommend a light, natural finish that’s more forgiving ( if done correctly, will gives you the well rested glow )

HAIR REPAIR

Woken up with locks like Amy Winehouse after an all-nighter? There’s only so far you can go using the ‘I’m working the bed-head hair trend’ excuse every day at the office.

If your boss is giving you funny looks it’s time to put some effort into your crowning glory – minus pricey salon blow dries. “Apply serum through the lengths to add definition and a glossing effect to tired or dull hair,” hairdresser Mark Hill recommends.

“A shine serum will not only smooth down unruly morning after hair and reflect shine from the sleek finish, but also nourish deep into the shaft and cuticle.”

I like James Brown serum; Chanel No.5 or Coco Mademoiselle fragrant hair mist will even refresh your hair and conceal that sickening smell of yesternight smoke/sweat……

PIN PICK-UP

Agyness Deyn may be supermodel of the moment but the party girl is regularly snapped with her long limbs covered in bruises. If you’re prone to bumps and knocks, you may wake up after a night out looking like some rare breed of purple leopard.

Dr Chris Steele, GP from This Morning says: “There isn’t anything you can do to prevent bruises, but it is possible to minimise the longevity and appearance of them by using arnica, which has anti-inflammatory properties that help speed up the healing process.”

Pretty woman on the street

Posted in fashion, makeup with tags , , , , on December 13, 2008 by LPB

Remember J.Roberts in Pretty Woman? Sometimes it’s fun to dress trashy……

Multicolored silk satin halterneck top with a ruffle detail under the bust. Roberto Cavalli top has a self-tie at the nack, a V-neckline and a logo zip at the back to fasten. 

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Gold sequin shorts. Anna Sui shorts have paillette stitched on to mesh, a contrast trim, an elasticated waistband and simply pull on. 100% polyester.

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Black leather knee-high boots with an approximately 3.5 inch heel. Jimmy Choo boots have an almond shaped toe, seam detailing, a covered tonal inset square heel with a patent panel at back and simply pull on.

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Complete your look with loads of mascara and a transfer proof lipstick.

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Loreal volume collagene – The Instant Impact brush is 2 x bigger than a classic mascara brush* to build volume fast. It deposits just the right amount of formula on each and every lash with virtually no clumps.

Lashes look instantly plumped up. Up to 12 x more lash impact.

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Max Factor lipfinity max-wear – a rich base color with brilliant highlight layer for a polished look. The result: endless possibilities for attention-getting, dimensional color that lasts up to 10 hours.

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Chloe eau de parfum

Posted in fragrance with tags , on December 13, 2008 by LPB

Feminine, elegant, natural, sexy, with heart notes of magnolia, lily of the valley and rose petals. Chloé Eau de Parfum is created with a mix of natural and couture materials.

The bottle is made with genuine silver plating and graced with a finishing touch – a hand-tied ribbon.

This unique example of craftsmanship and sublime rose scent perfectly capture the house of Chloé spirit, effortless chic and femininity.

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Chloé Eau de Parfum is a vibrant, feminine fragrance with starting notes of peony, lychee and freesia. It features base notes blend rose, magnolia and lily of the valley, as well as amber and cedarwood. 

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It is described as “a fresh and feminine fragrance with an utterly innate sense of chic.”  

I find it nice but plain; it lacks character & tenacity.

The rose scent is not overwhelming, does not smells powdery or dated; however, there is not much orchestration from the freesia, magnolia or lily, which makes this a rather dull rosy perfume that’s light enough to wear daily but lacks the depth for becoming a classic.

Wizard of Oz

Posted in fashion, makeup with tags , , , , , , , on December 12, 2008 by LPB

Bring out your inner Dorothy this festive season!

For a fresh innocent flush , i recommend NARS multiple  in Riviera or Antibes; For sparkly peepers, try NARS nightlife; For coming of age vibrance, stain your lips with Turkish delight lip gloss.

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Evoke a flirtatiously feminine mood with this charming Luella dress. Royal blue patterned silk off-the-shoulder dress with a boned underwire bodice. The dress has pleat panel detailing, a contrast scalloped trim, a frill at the hem, a signature zip at the back to fasten and is fully lined. 

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Red leather pumps with a heel that measures approximately 4 inches. Marc by Marc Jacobs pumps have a diamond shaped heel, an almond toe and a tan leather insole.

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Coco de Mer

Posted in skincare with tags , , on December 12, 2008 by LPB

Refresh your body with this deliciously light cocktail of coconut fruit extract and honey.  

The mild formula gently cleanses and conditions your skin to leave it feeling soft, smooth and supple.

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The Coco de Mer bath & shower has a soothing, almost tropical scent, and also includes extracts of wild honey which is renowned for its healing properties. Used daily, Coco de Mer captures moisture and leaves skin ultra-smooth.

For those who complain that most Molton Brown’s shower gel has a rather masculine scent, be rest assured that Coco de Mer  smells divine; nurturing & luxurious.

New age Lolita

Posted in fashion, makeup with tags , , , , on December 11, 2008 by LPB

Black-and-white cotton striped oversized sweater with a contrasting pink trim. Sonia Rykiel oversized sweater has long sleeves, a round neck and two front patch pockets.

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Neon pink skinny patent leather belt. Alexander McQueen belt has a gold logo buckle on front and taupe underside. 

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Black leather shoe boots with a heel that measures approximatley  5.5 inches and a  1 inch platform. Alexander McQueen shoe boots have an open toe, an elasticated contrasting strap at the back and a pink sole.

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Finish your look with Lipstick Queen pink sinner and a pitch black eyeliner !

Lollipop & white socks optional.

Green eyes

Posted in makeup with tags , on December 10, 2008 by LPB

I like green eyeshadow.

I like using different hues of green with different finishes; with golden/bronze highlighter and violet mascara

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Best hair tips

Posted in beauty with tags , , , , on December 7, 2008 by LPB

Some useful tips about hair care from http://www.dailymail.co.uk :

DON’T OVERDO IT

‘Always apply serum sparingly to prevent a greasy finish,’ says celebrity stylist Richard Ward.

‘Put a small amount in the palm of your hands, rub together and concentrate on the ends first and then, if necessary, smooth your hands near to the root area to remove the stray ‘baby’ hairs.

‘Try not to spend too long on the finishing touches, just a few quick, gentle finger movements to get the style in place and you’re done.’

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I loves James Brown hair serum, silicon free, delicately scented and easily rinsable.

THE NO-EFFORT DO

Achieving a natural-looking curl in your hair is easier than you think, according to Lee Stafford. ‘Always remember to use a heat protection mist before using any heated appliance on your hair,’ he stresses.

‘Twist small sections of dry hair from the root to the tip, then clamp hot straighteners over the twisted lock, starting at the top and slowly working down to the bottom. Clamp each section for about ten seconds then let the twisted lock cool before letting it go.

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Frederic Fekkai luscious curl cream & wave spray are great for nourishing, protecting & styling hair when using a curling tong,

USE A MASK

Regular use of hair conditioning masks can make hair look and feel lustrous. Top stylist Andrew Barton says: ‘Use at least once a week. Be religious and it will pay dividends, as it will help repair any damage and add masses of shine.’

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I can’t do without James Brown Nourishing hair mask; I am also fan of  the Kerastase range.

LEARN TO BLOW DRY

‘The foundation to any great style is a serious blow dry to add long-lasting body and lift, especially from the roots,’ says Mark Hill.

‘My technique is to dry the hair in the opposite direction to which it usually falls using a round barrel to create movement and a smooth, professional-looking finish. Sectioning the hair will allow you to focus on one area at a time.

‘If you have fine hair, add some instant lift through the top sections by sectioning around the crown and wrapping hair around three to four large Velcro rollers. Blast with warm, then cool air from the dryer and leave to set for a few minutes before releasing.’

CHOOSE THE RIGHT STYLE

‘Always opt for the very best cut you can afford as it can take years off you,’ says top stylist Taylor Ferguson. ‘Choose a cut that suits your face, head shape, age and, most importantly, your lifestyle. Choose one that can be looked after easily.’

ADD SOME SHINE

To give your hair some extra shine, John Frieda colourist Nicola Clarke stresses that you should always rinse your hair properly when cleansing. ‘I think the reason hair colour lasts in salon is that the hair is shampooed well.

‘A final blast of cold water will also add extra shine. And don’t apply conditioner to the scalp, just keep it to the mid section and ends, rinse thoroughly, and don’t overload your hair with hundreds of styling products, just stick to one that works for you.’

DON’T OVERDRY IT

When styling hair yourself, make sure you rough-dry it to about 75 per cent, says Shai Greenberg and Fred Gielly of Gielly Green. ‘This will make it a lot easier to style (the hair is less flyaway) and it gives the finished look more volume at the root.’

INSTANT FIX

If you’ve been rushing round and your hair’s gone damp and limp, a great instant fix is to ruffle a little bit of talcum powder through the roots with your fingertips, says celebrity hairdresser Errol Douglas. ‘It works like dry shampoo to soak up any moisture and give instant volume.’

MORE VOLUME

Getting volume is not always easy, especially on finer hair. Karine Jackson, London Hairdresser of the Year, has a great technique. ‘When the hair is wet, spray a light volume gel onto the roots and rub vigorously with your fingers – this confuses the root area and the hair stands up instantly giving you volume,’ she says.

‘If hair starts to droop during the day just push your fingers gently through it to get that lift again.’

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Kiehl silk groom is my favorite.

NO FRIZZ

Curly hair is completely different from straight hair, its structure and needs are different, explains Nicola Hulatt, from Yorkshire’s West Row Hairdressing.

‘Moisture is the key to keeping natural curls healthy. Never brush curls; otherwise you’ll end up with frizz. Instead, use your fingers to break up curls and add smoothing products such as gloss wax to give shine and definition.’

HAIRSPRAY

‘Spray hairspray onto your hair brush to avoid static and flyaway hair. You can also spritz it over your hair before using heated appliances for hold and protection,’ says Rae Palmer of Rae Palmer Hairdressing, Southsea, Hampshire.

Make up tips for dummies?

Posted in makeup with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 5, 2008 by LPB

While surfing the net, i came across this article by the non-blonde, it’s kind of like the 10 make up mistakes you should avoid if you want to look great. I agree with most of the rules, but  as my usual rebellion self, some rules are meant to be broken!

1. Not Using Primer-
Eye primer and face primer not only make your makeup last longer, but they provide a smooth, receptive canvas for other products. You can use less foundation and get a better coverage. And they prevent color migration.

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Laura Mercier & NARS are the best, in my opinion.

2. Concealer Before Foundation-
If your applying concealer to problem areas (zits, spots, uneven patches) before foundation, chances are that you’re using more product than needed. Start with your foundation and spread it evenly. It gives some coverage and evens out things. Then add just enough concealer and blend it into your foundation. The result is more natural looking and far less likely to look caked.

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A stick foundation with medium to full coverage could be used as a concealer, just choose one shade lighter than your all over shade and apply it with a concealer brush, i like Bobbi Brown ultra versatile stick foundation.

3. Too Dark Foundation-
And I’m not even talking about the dreaded oompa loompa look. Between the weird lighting in department stores and our own tendency to look for coverage, it’s very easy to choose too dark a foundation. Next time you’re at your favorite counter ask for a sample of a foundation that’s one shade lighter than what you’re wearing. Test it under normal conditions. Chances are you’re not as dark as you though.

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Totally agree on this, and the best thing you could do is to get you foundation custom made. Prescriptive exact match color system not only customizing your shade, it also let you choose the coverage, finish  & skincare formula!

4. Not Using a Lip Liner-
Seriously. If you’re wearing a dark lipstick, be it a sexy red or this season’s vampy browns, you need a matching lip liner to outline and keep your lip color in place. Not doing so results in a sloppy look and color bleeding. Also, a liner in a natural shade would do wonders for your neutral colored lipstick and would make it last longer if you use it to fill the lips.

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I personally think that using lip liner is great if you want a perfectly polished finish that will last forever. However, with some good lipsticks, i could usually get away with a natural, nicely stained pout.

5. Bright And Shimmery Blush-
A blush is supposed to give you a naturally flushed look. Do you know anyone who actually blushes in shimmery coral? Consider a mutes rose or a gentle plum. If you want extra shimmer add it subtle where and when appropriate (which is rarely over your cheeks).

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NARS  multiples defy this rule; most of the shades  will give you a glowing sheen when you use them as a blush – you know, the angelical halo effect.

6. Old Mascaras-
Yes, I know the tube isn’t empty yet, but there’s a good reason you’re told to toss your mascara after three months. All the air that’s getting pumped inside every time you deep the brush in to it doesn’t just make it a breeding ground for bacteria, but also dries the mascara out and makes it clumpy.

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Yeap, old mascara is messy & clumpy. Buy some great yet inexpensive drug store brands like Maybelline or Max Factor; My mantra is thrifty on mascara & generous on foundation.

7. Black Eyeliner-
Don’t get me wrong: I love black eyeliner. It’s sexy. However, even someone with my coloring doesn’t need a very contrasting color for daytime. It can look very harsh, and if you’re fair skinned or blonde it might look overdone and garish. There are so many better options, from the almost-black-but-not-quite to caramel. they will give you the contouring and definition in a modern, non-Amy Winehouse way.

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Well, i loves pitch black eyeliner; as i am lucky enough to get a natural finish/definition by wearing mascara alone, i want a dramatic look if i am bothered enough to apply  liner.

8. Skipping Powder-
Powder has somewhat of a bad rap that’s not necessarily justified. Of course, you don’t want to go overboard or to look ashy (the result of too many “translucent” powders that are actually more white than naturally colored). But for a truly polished and natural face, you need a good finishing product that would even things out even more than before and would keep things in place. Opt for a pressed powder (easier to handle, less likely to look ghostly, travels better) that has a color to match your undertone. Apply with a good, thick brush.

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I am a believer in using pressed instead of loose powder; Trust me, if you choose the right product and apply it with a professional face/powder brush,  the finish will be stunning & long lasting. I also use this technique to tone down blusher/bronzer. MAC is great when it comes to shades diversity, Clinique & Bobbi Brown have the sheerest finish.

9. Penciled Eyebrows-
A penciled eye brow looks painted and weird. Even if you found the perfect color. It always surprises me to see how many women (otherwise well-informed and makeup savvy) make this mistake. Choose an eye shadow color that matches your hair color and apply with a thin, stiff brush using tiny strokes.

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I like Chanel’s as you could blend the shades to customize the intensity. Model Co. is great as well – usethe coloured wax to tame/groom the brow , follow by the powder to set and color your primed brow.

10. Clinging To Discontinued Products-
I know you loved that perfect eyeliner/lip gloss/stick foundation the evil people at the marketing department decided to discontinue. You loved it so much you wrote the company and had them send you every last scrape of it they had in their warehouse and then you haunted eBay for months searching for more. I did it, too. But it’s time to let go. There are new and better formulas, updated and subtler shades and lots of new awesome products. There are constant improvement in textures and modern pigments. today you wouldn’t touch even the most luxurious lipstick or concealer from 10 years ago. They just don’t measure up to the ones on the market today.

Regenerist Daily 3 Point Treatment Cream

Posted in skincare with tags , , , on December 4, 2008 by LPB

The result of over 50 years of Olay research, this luxurious cream has the highest concentration of Olay’s signature amino-peptide complex infused with intracellular fortifier and a touch of precious marine proteins. Intracellular hydration regenerates volume and shape across skin’s 10 million surface cells, progressively lifting and micro-sculpting to help: Firm sagging-prone areas, even the jaw line Smooth skin’s surface Restore elasticity

Get beautifully fresh, younger-looking skin around those hard-to-treat areas – the eyes, jaw line and neck. 

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  • treats the difficult areas that some products ignore
  • achieves dramatically younger-looking skin

This cream is heavily scented, has luminescent particles that illuminates the skin; moisturizes, pumps & tightens ; However, it’s no miracle; it does not sculpt/firm/de-wrinkle the skin and i find it too heavy to use as a day cream.

The fact that it is as good as La Mer or some other luxurious skin cream is probably TRUE, in my opinion.

Ingredients: Aqua, Glycerin, Isohexadecane, Niacinamide, Aluminum Starch Octenylsuccinate, Isopropyl Isostearate, Nylon-12, Dimethicone, Panthenol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Palmitoyl Pentapeptide-4, Carnosine, Soluble Collagen, Elastin, Aloe Barbadensis Gel, Camelia Sinensis Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Allantoin, Tocopherol, Dimethiconol, C13-14 Isoparaffin, C12-13 Pareth-3, PEG-100 Stearate, Cetearyl Glucoside, Laureth-7, Arachidyl Alcohol, Behenyl Alcohol, Benzyl Alcohol, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cetyl Alcohol, Myristyl Alcohol, Stearyl Alcohol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Sodium Acrylates Copolymer, Polyacrylamide, Ammonium Polyacrylate, Citric Acid, Palmitic Acid, Stearic Acid, Polyethylene, Imidazolidinyl Urea, Titanium Dioxide, Mica, Tin Oxide, Sodium Hydroxide, Sodium Benzoate, Phenoxyethanol, Disodium EDTA, Butylparaben, Ethylparaben, Isobutylparaben, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Parfum, Alpha-Isomethyl Ionone, Benzyl Salicylate, Butylphenyl Methylpropional, Citronellol, Hexyl Cinnamal, Limonene, Linalool.