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August 3, 2016

We Tried it: At Home Micro-Needling

We Tried It - At-Home Micro-needling | Beauty Bets
I’m always looking for the latest miracle beauty product or treatment, so when I read this rave review from Byrdie about at home micro-needling, I plopped down my credit card. While I’ve heard about pricey micro-needling treatments for a few years now, at-home solutions like Stacked Skincare’s Collagen Boosting Micro-Roller have been trending as a miracle beauty tool (and for only $30 it was a no-brainer). If you’re new to the micro-needling craze, at-home versions claim to even out your skin tone and boost collagen the all-natural way. What really sold me was the promise that it could help kick my under-eye circles to the curb (when you look sleepy all the time you’re willing to try anything).

We Tried It - At-Home Micro-needling | Beauty Bets

How it works is simple: After cleansing skin, you roll the micro-roller vertically, horizontally and diagonally over your face, focusing on lips, forehead, chin, and neck while using even and mild pressure. While it seems weird to be rolling tiny needles on your face, they’re so short that it barely feels like it’s piercing your skin – it’s more like a super mild pinch! After micro-needling your face for 3-5 minutes, apply a nourishing serum like Elizabeth Dehn for One Love Organics Vitamin C Brightening Facial Serum ($75). Your skin will more readily absorb all of the nutrients as a result of the micro-needling.

The verdict? I’ve been adding micro-needling to my skincare routine three times a week before bed (since it can make your skin a little red) and I’ve seen results in just a few weeks. While it definitely evened out my skin tone, I can’t say micro-needling miraculously solving my under-eye circles (please let me know if anyone’s found a miracle cure for that!).  I’ll be using it at least all summer long, until the next big skincare gadget comes out 😉

To purchase the micro-roller we tried, visit Stacked

May 25, 2016

The Love List // May

The May Love List | Beauty Bets

Now that it’s finally warmed up here in the Midwest, we’re getting down to business with new beauty routines. Here’s what we’re currently tossing in our online shopping carts:

1. Advanced Clinicals Collagen Serum ($15): Collagen: so hot right now, making appearances in juices, chewable vitamins (?!) and skincare. The jury is still out on whether we are aging backwards, but for the price we’re putting this serum from Advanced Clinicals to the test. So far, the glow is noticeable. // 2. Cocovit Orange Basil Lip Balm ($14): We’ll never be over coconut oil. Right now we have extra love for this deeply nourishing balm that’s chock-full of essential oils and totally smells like a tropical getaway. Sign. Us. Up. // 3. Tata Harper Volumizing Lip and Cheek Tint ($36): Get that girl-next-door glow the au natural way with one of our favorite tints from the green goddess herself, Tata Harper. So fresh, so pretty. // 4. W3ll People Bio-Brightener Stick ($29): W3LL PEOPLE clearly needs no introduction; we’ve been big fans of this all natural company for years. They recently announced that they’ll be available at Whole Foods (YAY!), which makes getting our hippie tested favorites like the Bio-Brightener even easier. This illuminator has a cult-like following for it’s ability to magically makes skin look, well, way better. 5. Mineral Fusion 3-in-1 Color Stick ($20): Speaking of sticks, this one gives a subtle sheen without going overboard in the makeup department. Bonus points that it’s all-natural and layers beautifully over bronzer for a believable faux glow. // 6. Trust Fund Beauty ($15): It’s officially pedicure season, and we’ve been loving all the new shades from our friends at Trust Fund Beauty. Besides having hilarious names (this pink shade is called “No Filter”), they’re always vegan, cruelty free and non-toxic which makes our toes even happier. // 7. Indie Lee Clearing Mask ($60): It’s about that time to get ahead of the sweat/sunless-tanner run on pores. Keep them clear with this clay-based beauty that serves double-duty as an exfoliator thanks to salicylic acid (thanks Indie!). A staple in our Sunday self-care routine.





April 12, 2016

The Best Spring Nail Polishes

What the heck is going on, Midwest? We’re not totally sure what’s happening with the weather outside, but supposedly spring is just around the corner (which is a little hard to believe considering it’s been snowing off and on for the last few days!) Even if the weather might be completely failing us, we’re still attempting to add some spring to our step with a few of our favorite shades. Think springy thoughts, right? And if all else fails we’ll see where wearing spring colors takes us!

The Best Spring Nail Polish | Beauty Bets

Spring is all about breaking out of your usual winter routine, which means out with the dull and in with the bright and bold. There are so many colorful trends we’ve been loving, from red hot hues to metallics, to tropical greens and neon brights. If it was socially acceptable to paint each of our nails a different color, we might just do it this time of year. Here are a few of our favorite shades (from top left to bottom right) that we’re currently crushing on, hard.

Givenchy // Crabtree & Evelyn // OPI // Cle de Peau // Jin Soon // Guishem // Scotch Naturals // Essie // OPI // Nailsinc // Sally Hansen //Loreal // Floss Gloss // Essie // Chanel // RMS

We’ll be trying out our favorite new spring shades for weeks to come and we promise to report back with our findings. If you happen to beat us to the punch, please share with the class – we’d love to know what shade you’re loving to spring!

March 18, 2016

We tried it: An Anti-Dandruff System That Actually Makes Your Hair Look Better

Many thanks to CLEAR for sponsoring this post. As always, opinions are our own.

Clear Hair Close Up

I’ve been trying to be diligent about giving my skin some TLC this winter, which usually means lathering on oils, serums, lotions and anything that promises to moisturize my tired, dry skin. As usual, it didn’t even occur to me to give my scalp some love until I was getting dolled up for a cocktail event in Chicago a few weeks back. There’s nothing like an LBD to give you a wakeup call about the flaky state of your scalp, and I unfortunately realized the latter when I looked in the mirror on the way out the door. No, it wasn’t snowing inside – I had just seriously ignored my scalp all winter long and it was now raring its ugly, um, head.

Clear Product

I immediately changed into a colorful dress and vowed to find a shampoo and conditioner that would give my scalp some much deserved attention. I wanted to find a solution that would kick winter dryness to the curb while smelling great and not causing any icky, greasy build-up. Fairly reasonable requests, but not that easy to find when perusing the drugstore beauty aisle. I came across CLEAR Complete Scalp Care Anti-Dandruff Shampoo and Conditioner which seemed to fit all my qualifications: not only is CLEAR clinically proven to eliminate dandruff symptoms but it’s formulated with vitamins and nutrients to restore hair health as well (I’ve always avoided dandruff products in the past because so often they treat the scalp while ignoring the hair—hello!).

Clear Curly

Just a few washes later and I was like those ladies in those hair commercials – dramatically flipping my hair as I walked down the street, with handsome men stopping to give me their numbers and proclaiming their undying love to me. Okay, maybe that didn’t happen, but my hair did immediately become flake-free and a whole lot shinier, smoother and all-around happier. And even though I had originally bought CLEAR Complete Scalp Care Anti-Dandruff Shampoo and Conditioner to fix my dry scalp problem, I have a feeling that I’ll be buying these throughout the year. And if a hair product can stand the buy again test, it’s definitely BB approved in our book! CLEAR is available online and in stores at Target.


January 12, 2016

14 Korean Beauty Products We’re Dying to Try

Korean Beauty Buys | Beauty Bets

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably heard the growing buzz about Korean beauty. While I loved the idea of dipping into such an exotic category the idea was also totally intimidating—until I discovered Peach & Lily. This newish online mecca with a super sweet name carries every cult-favorite Korean skin + makeup product your favorite beauty bloggers have been raving about. Here are a few best-sellers that I’m dying to try:

1. Mizon Apple Smoothie Peeling Gel ($18): A fruity gel peel beloved for dissolving dirt and dead skin while leaving skin super soft. //2. Intensive Skin Barrier Cream ($23): While I’d never heard of “skin barrier” cream before, it’s known in Korea as the best way to lock in hydration and help keep skin looking younger and firmer, which sounds pretty good about now (brrrrr!). //3. Mela Defense White Capsule Essence ($34): A brightening essence that helps with hyperpigmentation, this multi-tasking serum offers some serious bang for your buck. // 4. Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask ($25): On those cold winter days when lip balm just isn’t enough, this ingenious lip mask moisturizes while creating a protective film that lasts all night. // 5. May Coop Mini Raw Sauce ($14): Sauce for your skin? Why not when this gentle toner is made with 93% maple tree sap which gives your skin a natural, luminous glow. // 6. Peri’s Tint Water ($12): One of my all-time favorite lip tints, this Korean classic is even more amazing than it’s American counter-part (Benefit’s Benetint). Trust me and just give it a go! // 7. Aromatica Organic Coconut Balm ($10): My skincare motto is “all coconut oil everything,” so lip balm is high on my list of products to try stat. // 8. Correct Jelly Shadow ($17): The perfect shadow with a luminous, jelly-like texture that miraculously are known to be durable and long lasting. //9. Caolion Blackhead Bubble Pore Pack ($26): A Korean best-seller, this activated charcoal mask sucks out blackheads and trapped dirt. Like Biore, only better? //10. Mizon Night Repair Seruming Ampoule ($38): If you’re not already a fan of overnight serum, this powerful elixir will make you a believer. Revitalizes skin overnight, giving it some much-needed hydration and radiance. //11. Aromatica Tea Tree Purifying Shampoo ($27): Made for oily hair, this version has natural tea tree astringent to nourish your scalp while maintaining hair’s moisture balance. //12. Kill Brown Eyeliner ($22): This beautiful brown eyeliner is a favorite among makeup artists and beauty editors alike for its staying power—something we can all appreciate in an eyeliner! // 13. Cremorlab Herb Team Blemish Calming Mask ($6): Korean beauty lovers swear by these pre-soaked, single sheet masks to quickly calm and banish blemishes. //14. Miracle Seed Essence ($57): Laced with exotic lotus seed extract, this essence is chock full of moisturizing amino and linoleic acids to nourish your skin all day long.

Have any other Korean beauty products you swear by? Team BB would love to give them a try!

  • Elizabeth Dehn
    Born and raised in Minnesota by surprisingly low-maintenance parents, beauty writer and lifestyle editor Elizabeth Dehn (aka Bets) spent her awkward years buying Mood lipstick and whipping up DIY face masks before founding Beauty Bets in 2009.
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