Etsy Love: Rainbows!

Thursday, June 30, 2011

You may have heard some great news out of New York over the past week concerning marriage equality, an issue I am very supportive of. I thought I'd post some rainbow-themed items today.  All finds are from Etsy.


Needle felting kit from Fairyfolk

Cupcake picks from  Shortcake Party Picks

Pillow cover from Blue Calla

Fabulous bracelet from Mad River Designs

I adore this choker from Jenny Hoople!

::Moving Back::

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

In May when there was the big Blogger crash that darkened thousands of Blogger blogs for more than a day, I jumped ship and moved to Word Press. I chose the self-hosted version as opposed to the free one and have tried it out for more than a full month.

Do you know something? I have really, really missed Blogger! It has flaws and isn't perfect, but nothing in this world is.  It's been C & G's home for 4 years and I decided to come back.

I am sorry for being wishy-washy. I just really missed my "old comfortable shoe" that is Blogger!

Product Review: Reviva Labs

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

I was recently introduced to Reviva Labs skin care items, as two products were sent to me for review.  I have had several weeks to try these out and would like to share my thoughts with you.
First off, it is refreshing to be sent something that would not cost a fortune to repurchase.  It seems as though some things I have been sent lately are extremely overpriced and the price point of the Reviva Labs items is on par for what you’d find on the shelves of the skin care aisle at Target. What is wonderful though, is the fact that these products feature three potent skin care ingredients–DMAE, Vitamin C Ester, and Alpha Lipoic Acid.
I would like to also draw some parallels to a popular and very expensive skin care line featuring those same three ingredients:  Perricone MD Cosmeceuticals. This brand is very high end and boasts these wonderful ingredients.
Through the course of my blogging, I have been fortunate enough to be able to try several of the Perricone products and would like to give you my thoughts on how the high end compares to the low end.
I was sent an eye product and facial serum to review.

The Eye Firming Serum from Reviva is quite nice.  It features olive oil, whole wheat protein, mulberry extract, DMAE, Alpha Lipoic Acid, Hyaluronic Acid, and more. There is also cyclomethicone, a silicone, so I won’t call this a completely natural product.  That said, this ingredient makes for a beautiful undereye primer so your concealer stays put.
After a couple weeks of use, I can say that this is particularly helpful at targeting fine lines under the eyes.  I am actually a DMAE fan.  I know many are unsure of whether this ingredient is a great one or not for anti-aging, but I dosee results when I use it in skin care products. The Ester C also makes my undereye area brighter.
This eye serum is non-irritating, absorbs quickly, contains no artificial fragrance, and lives up to its claims.
I find this eye serum quite similar to the Perricone Advanced Eye Area Therapy, which is the same size for $95.  The Reviva Labs product is $19.
Both make similar claims when it comes to helping with dark circles, fine lines, and puffiness.  The Reviva Labs product features fewer ingredients.  This is not bad, though.  There is more hyaluronic acid in the Reviva product. There is also more DMAE. There are silicones and water in both.  There is Alpha Lipoic Acid in both.  In fact, the products feel nearly identical when it comes to texture. This is case of the less costly product being just as good as the expensive one.

Ingredients Grade: B
Product Results/Experience Grade: A+

The second product I am reviewing is the DMAE Firming Fluid.  I really like this serum.  For 3/4 of the year, my skin is dry. This time of year, though, it’s combination with a more oily t-zone.  My typical creams are too heavy for this time of year, especially when you add more mineral sunscreen than normal to the routine.
This feels fabulous on my skin and is lightweight and silky. If you have oily skin, I could see this one working brilliantly for you.
Again, it features DMAE and after continued use, I do see a minor difference–but still a difference I can see.  Like I said, it’s been a couple weeks of regular use, so I am curious to see the effects long term.
About DMAE–this is an anti-inflammatory ingredient that can help to give a firmer and more youthful appearance to the skin.
As with the eye serum above, there are great similarities between this product from Reviva Labs and the $95 Perricone High Potency Evening Repair. While there are fewer ingredients in the Reviva Labs (again, this isn’t a negative), this formulation is better for the skin and will be much less irritating.
The essential ingredients are the same. Again, there is DMAE and Alpha Lipoic Acid listed near the top of the ingredients list in both.  A silicone ingredient is also present in both for the smooth texture and ease of application.  The Perricone, though, contains palm oil (which is an unethical trade), a bunch of questionable chemicals, and artificial fragrance.
For the money, you will see very comparable results using the much less expensive product.
Ingredients Grade: B
Product Grade: A

The C & G Bottom Line
Like I have said before, you can find fantabulous skin care products out there without breaking the bank. There is NO NEED to spend almost $200 on two skin care products when there are two equally as lovely products available for under $40 total with very similar ingredients.
These are the only two products I have tried so far from  Reviva Labs, but I can recommend these if anti-aging is a main concern.

*I was sent these products at no cost for review.  This in no way has impacted the outcome of my review and all opinions are my own.

Guest Bloggers Needed

Monday, June 27, 2011

Hello readers,
Last year when we went on vacation, I had some delightful guest bloggers to fill in for me and I would love to do that again when we’re away in July.

We'll be staying in this guest house on a farm in the Pennsylvania Dutch Country.

Are you a new blogger and you’d like to get some extra publicity for your own blog? Are you a green living or beauty blogger? Do you like to cook and have some great recipes to share (if your name is Laura and you’re family, I am talking to you!)?  Are you a budget decorating aficionado? Email me! I’d love to have you be a guest blogger while I am away.
Shoot me an email at for info.

Savers Giveaway!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

There’s a brand new thrift shop in town and it celebrates its Grand Opening this morning at 8:30!

Savers, which was founded in 1954 and has over 250 retail locations, is a thrift shop chain that partners with local charities to help the entire community. So while you’re getting a great bargain on clothing, home goods, bed & bath, and more, you will also be helping a local charity.
The newest Savers is in Henrietta at 1175 Marketplace Drive across from Walmart. Their regular hours are 9 to 9 Monday through Saturday and 11 to 6 on Sundays. This shop is partnered up with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Rochester, which we all know is a fabulous organization!
I also am excited to say that another Savers will open up later this summer in Webster.  How exciting! If you’ve been reading this blog long enough, you know that I adore thrift shops, so I am really eager to start shopping at Savers.
The generous folks at Savers want YOU to win a gift certificate to their store. In fact, they are giving away 4 gift certificates each worth $20 to my local readers! Enter now through tomorrow night (Friday) at 9pm EDT.
Enter to win today!
1. Comment on this post OR become a fan of Chic & Green on Facebook. It’s that simple!
To earn another entry, please go to the Savers Facebook page and become a fan.

Summer Manicure Tips

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Let’s give ourselves a summer manicure today! I’ve done step one today and hopefully will be able to set aside some time tonight for the color!

We all need to set aside some time and treat ourselves to a bit of well-deserved pampering.
Here we go:

Step 1: Remove old polish and wash hands.

A safe natural nail polish remover from Scotch Naturals

Step 2: Shape and buff the nails.

I really like the glass nail files sold at Barefoot Bling. Her glass files work so well and are gentle on the nails, too! Choose from several designs. They’re $9 each and will last your forever.

For buffing, I always get a yellow box style buffer at Sally Beauty Supply.

Step 3: Exfoliate

For smooth and soft hands, I recommend using a scrub. Making your own is easy peasy. Here is a recipe of mine I have shared with you before. It’s a lovely salt scrub. Use this on your hands and feet and night. It makes for a soothing, pampering treatment.

Click HERE for that recipe.

Not a do it yourselfer? No worries. Get yourself  a decadent salt scrub from Prem Soaps.

Step 4: Rinse, cleanse & dry hands.

I told you a few months back about my favorite hand cleansers and have to mention them to you again. We all know traditional anti-bac hand soaps (think the nasty ones from Bath & Body Works) are horrible for your skin and contain toxic triclosan.  Clean Well hand soaps are all-natural and contain gentle and natural surfactants and essential oils. Get those hands clean–without harming and drying out your skin with this one.

Are you a do it your self maven? Try this recipe for a simple, natural hand cleanser which I posted here a long time ago. Click HERE for that recipe.

Step 5: Apply a good hand cream.

I have also told you about a fabulous hand cream I have been using over the past few months.  I love hand cream. I use it religiously. My hands get really dry this time of year and I am frequently washing my hands. When I paint or use my jewelry epoxy, my hands also get a little bit beaten up so I have to scrub.

Ingredients-wise, the best hand cream I have found had been the Burt’s Bees Almond Milk Hand Creme. I find, though, that it works best at night for me as it is super thick and concentrated.  My hands stay a bit greasy.  For me, it is perfect for night. During the day, though, I like to carry a tube with me and apply it as needed. When I couldn’t get past the horrible smell of the Burt’s Bees hand cream sold in a tube, I was wondering if I’d ever find a tube formulation with stellar ingredients.

I really haven’t had a good tube of hand cream because of the ingredients in most of them. My three favorites all have had ingredients I haven’t been too happy with, though I loved how they made my hands feel. For me, my favorites were Crabtree & Evelyn Gardeners Therapy Hand Cream, Camille Beckman French Vanilla Glycerine Hand Therapy, and Perlier White Almond Hand Cream.

Unfortunately, all three contain a good portion of potentially harmful ingredients.  What I am using–and loving–now isSeed Grape Seed Enriched Healthy Hand Cream. This is an all-natural formulation is gently preserved with  Gluconolactone and sodium benzoate (this two-ingredient system is derived from corn). It truly is the best hand cream EVER!

It is everything that I have been looking for in a hand cream. It is light, yet ultra rich at the same time. Fortified with shea butter, jojoba oil, glycerin, aloe, and other nutrients, this just softens my hands without leaving a greasy residue behind. This is also free of silicone, yet still keeps that beautifully soft, supple feeling in the hands all day long.

I use the Simply Fragrance Free.  I love how there literally is no scent to this so I can apply it liberally without it competing with my fragrances. I also use this on my face when my skin is dry.
The hand lotions sell for $7.99 each and can be found at Seed Online, and is now available at Wegmans!
Step 6: Lay down the foundation

A good base coat will help your manicure last longer. One to try–Seche Vite. You can find it at Sally for $7.99.

Step 7: Add some color!

Water Based Natural Nail Polish Shades We Adore:

1.  Acquarella in French Kissed
2. Scotch in Loch Ness Mystery
3. Hopscotch Kids in Bubble Gum, Bubble Gum in a Dish

Step 8: Finish with a top coat. My favorite:

From Essie, $8

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