June: My Favorite Things

I enjoyed doing a product listing of favorite finds in April and thought I'd keep it going.  I'd meant to do a post for May but as usual once I focus on a big theme like Charm School that's about all I work with.   

I'm giving an honest unbiased review of these items and sites.  I did not receive anything as compensation nor are any items, stores, etc.  in this post affiliated links.

Last month I shared food products and a few skincare items.  This month it's clothing and beauty products.

Bras are the bane of most of our lives.  Finding what fits well and is true to size and supports and lifts and prevents backaches, doesn't roll up or continually have sliding straps, etc., etc....Well you know.  Last year Bridgette Rae had a giveaway on her fashion blog for a Warner's No Side Effects bra.  I'm game to enter giveaways and usually don't win, but this time I did.   In my letter to the team doing the giveaway I'd complained that I was at that stage where I had side boob and was tired of that overhang and lack of support in my usual bras.  I think they felt I was their primary target audience.  I was so excited when I got the notification I had won. 

I'm going to confess here and now that I was so disappointed when I visited their site.  The largest bra was 1 size below what I was wearing at the time.  I submitted that top size as mine and hoped for the best.

This is the style bra I received.   In the past I have loathed underwire bras.  I was dubious about liking this one.   It fit like a dream.  It still fits like a dream.  It's so comfortable that I am often surprised late in a day to realize that I haven't done the bra fling.   I'm perfectly comfortable and I don't even realize I haven't taken it off!  Remember that I ordered one size below what I normally wear, but I did get the proper cup measurement.

There are other styles available and many besides the No Side Effects.

The bras are available at JCPenney, Kohls,  Amazon, and Macy's in the US, and at Hudson Bay and Sears in Canada.  I've priced them from $20-$40.   In my opinion, even at $40 they are worth every single penny.

Last month I gave in to the need to have fresh nightgowns.  I've worn the Vanity Fair gowns for years and really like them but in my search for the gown on Amazon I was distracted by a really pretty gown that cost roughly half the amount.  It was the detail on the bodice that caught my attention. I'm always enamored with gowns with beautiful work on them but usually I can not afford the ones I like best.  At $13,  I took a chance and ordered the gown as well as one of my favorite Vanity Fair gowns.

It was pretty online but even the close up view of the bodice didn't do it justice.  It's exquisite work and one of the loveliest things I've ever seen.  It's well made.  I haven't had occasion to wash it just yet and you'll see why in a moment but it does appear to be a really good quality item.  One look at that bodice in real life will convince you of that!

This gown runs a tiny bit smaller than I'd like.  I ordered a 2X.  It's meant to fit a 46 inch bust.  I'd say it fits a 44 bust best.  2X is their largest size.   It fits but isn't quite as full as I'd thought it might be. It is a sheer gown, not having quite the opaque quality of the Vanity Fair material.  I ordered the gown in a pale pink. Other colors might well not be quite so sheer.  And the facing behind that beautiful bodice itches.  I'm going to try to find a light nylon fabric that I can hand sew to cover that itchy fabric.  Still, if you haven't got sensitive skin and you'd like something really pretty, this gown is the way to go.

John and I had an anniversary last month.  For our gifts to each other, I ordered cologne for him and perfume for myself.  Yes, I did order my own gift and explained to him that I'd done so when I gave him his.  He was relieved to not have the pressure of coming up with a gift and happy I'd gotten something I like.  I don't do this sort of gift shopping for myself often but he didn't mind it this time.

I'd bought Drakkar Essence back around Christmas 2015 and even picked up an extra bottle at after Christmas sales.  He'd run out about Christmas time this year and I looked high and low for the same fragrance with no luck.  I hate that!   I finally thought to look at a website I have used many times in the past to place orders:  fragrancenet.com  They had the scent at a very good price.  In fact, I got a huge bottle for the same price as I'd paid for his small bottle at Christmas.

One of the perks at this site is that you can order sample bottles of some scents.  When I discovered a scent card in a Vogue magazine of Versace Bright Crystal and Versace Yellow Diamond, I went right to Fragrancenet and ordered a small sample bottle which were the cutest little replicas of the big bottles.  It cost a whole $8 for each sample and it lasted me easily three months or more.  I loved both scents and didn't have any allergies to the fragrances so I felt safe ordering a larger bottle this time.   I saved nearly $30 over the cost of the same size bottle at Ulta Beauty.  This site also offers tester bottles which are generally a little less in cost than the usual bottles of fragrance.

This site also sells makeup, haircare and skincare products.  They have a large inventory of products across all price ranges from designer items to drugstore brands.  Stock varies however, so be aware of that.   And do check prices of their drugstore brands against your own drugstore.  I found a few products were a dollar or two higher than I'd pay at CVS, say.  That said, this is still a great place to shop and often they do have sales.   Check them out next time you need perfume or makeup.

I shared my experience with the eye product when I was lured into a shop in St. Augustine.  I just couldn't see the price of that product but it worked....enough so that I was quite impressed.  When I shared about my experience with Katie, she told me there were many products that would do the same thing that were far more reasonable in cost.  The first product is the top pick she said for anyone who wants to erase eye bags and fine lines about eyes.  I have not tried this product but yes, I trust my daughter on this one.  She researches, she reads reviews and she has tried a sample product of this.  In other words, she knows her stuff.  I promise you to a woman, in this family, it's Katie to whom we direct questions regarding skin, hair and makeup products....and a good many fashion questions as well but that's not what this is about, lol.

Ren Instant Brightening Beauty Shot Eyelift is her recommendation.  It's about $32 on Amazon.

I looked at that product and then went with her second recommendation which was Garnier SkinActive Clearly Brighter Anti-Puff Eye Roller.  I paid $17 at CVS and it's $10.50 or so on Amazon.  I'm giving the product a trial now.  All of these products recommend you use them twice daily for at least two weeks to see optimum results.  I'm taking it on faith at this stage.  I haven't seen the instant tightening I saw with the $XXX priced stuff but then I'm not paying $XXX for an eye serum any time in this lifetime!  I'm willing to trust Katie and will see how this goes.

Though I'm still on trial I thought if others of you were dealing with the bags under your eyes you might be interested to know what products Katie recommended.

Finally this is another product that I do use.  Again, it's one I was given at the hospital back in 2015.  The nurse's aide used it to keep my skin from breaking down in areas that naturally get warm and moist.  I pulled it from the basket and started using it when the weather got muggy and hot last month and it's a great way to keep skin healthy!

Phytoplex Z-Guard Paste is sold on Amazon for a bit over $7 a tube.  A tiny bit goes a long way though and it does give a reliable barrier against moisture.  Perfect for those of us who might have folds of skin that seem to be easily irritated this time of year.

Those are the picks I have for you this month.  Let me know if you try any of them!


Delorise said...

I usually don't even look at underwire bras. My past experience has been a very uncomfortable one with them. I will have to give this one a try though- there is a J C Penney and Kohls close by so I can go in and try on for sizing.
I am enjoying your product reviews.

Becky Gepford said...

In our family, it is opposite than yours. My husband buys his own presents lots of the time. In the past, he has been more able to slip out and get gifts during lunch hours, etc. and he is just plain a better shopper than I am. He also knows what he wants and gets the right thing! With the change in job, he no longer has any flexibility. None. So, I've had to do a lot of things I did not do before. But, I'm adjusting. And, I even bought him a present the other day. It was a small cooler he wanted to replace from one that wore out, filled with fishing stuff like hooks and bait, snacks, a new toothbrush and paste, and a mushy card. He loved it so much. I was glad I did it Because it is so rare he was so surprised, it was very fun!

Vintage Ellen said...

For the last 20 years my husband and I have given each other the ultimate gift of no gifts! We didn't have a lot of money and wanted to spend it on our boys. Plus there was a lot of pressure to come up with the perfect gift that would surprise and delight. So we don't exchange gifts at Christmas, birthdays, Valentine's Day or our anniversary. Although not for everyone, for us it is very relaxing.

Debby in KS said...

Happy Anniversary! We're nearing our 24th. We hope to do something fun for the 25th, but things have been quiet. When we first got married, our plan was to take an Alaskan Cruise for our 20th. Funny how life interferes with plans, isn't it?! Instead, we spent the year with my mom sick and then home hospice. Then with our dog sick and essentially doggy hospice. And then my mom's 23 yr. old cat.
So much for Alaska!!! Instead, we try to keep our tradition. We got married in early Dec. So, husband usually takes the day off. He usually goes in the early morning to the post office to drop off our shipping gifts. Then, we go out to lunch and then come home and decorate the house for Christmas. It's a day I always enjoy and there's no pressure to hurry. He insists that we go somewhere special for the 25th. He's lucky I'm a cheap date!!! ;)

I love your June favorites. If you don't mind, I'd like to list my own June favorite for this year! Aravon sandals. They're not cheap, but they are wonderful. The pair I bought for about $120 in 2007 literally fell apart this year. I replaced them last month for about the same (I had a $10 off coupon). They are like walking on little pillows. Ahhhhhh..... If you have bad feet, give them a try.

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