Archive for September, 2013

Product Review: Lash & Brow Amplifying Serum by Measurable Difference

Product Review: Measurable Difference Lash & Brow Amplifying Serum

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Have you seen the commercials for a certain prescription medication that can increase ones lashes? The one that says it can permanently change the color of your eyes? As someone who has had many such side effects and complications to medications, I cannot understand why someone would take that sort of risk for such a cosmetic issue. Then again there is a booming multi-billion dollar plastic surgery market, so I guess I’m not that surprised. So when I heard about this alternative that could stimulate lash and brow growth without all the risky side effects I immediately jumped at the chance to try such products. The mascara I reviewed recently also contains the same active ingredient as this serum, RegenaLash.

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For the last several weeks I’ve been consistently applying this serum in the hopes that it would help to revitalize my sparse lashes and brows. I realize that hair growth is a slow process and so I was not expecting to see results over night. I do like that this serum is very easy to apply and has no discernible scent. The directions say to apply once daily to a clean and dry eye area. I’ve gotten in the habit of applying after I wash my face at night.

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While I don’t think I’ve noticed any significant growth in my brows, they haven’t become any more sparse. I’m not sure my lashes are any fuller either, but I have noticed that they are a bit longer and seem less brittle than before. My hair also grows very slowly so that could also be playing a part too. Or it could just need longer to reap the full benefits. Either way, I plan to continue to use daily and write an update in another 6 weeks or so. I also love that this, like the rest of the Measurable Difference line is made in the U.S.A!

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Since this is easy to use and does not have the risks associated with the prescription alternative, I think this is a good option to try if you are like me with thinning, brittle, sparse, short and/or slow to grow brows and lashes. Have you tried or had success with any products aimed at lashes or brows? Or do you have a great way to fill in or bulk up your brows or lashes with cosmetics? If so I’d love to hear about what products you’ve tried! And don’t forget to check out this and the rest of the Measurable DIfference line by clicking HERE!

~Jaclyn~
Disclaimer: I received one or more items from the manufacturer or PR representative for the purpose of this honest review. All opinions are mine. Please see my disclaimer policy for more information.

Big Changes…

I’ve had BIG CHANGES in my life during the last year since I had the last reconstruction surgery on my leg in early July 2012. It was 6 months before I was out of the full leg brace and back allowed back to physical therapy. It wasn’t until the end of 2012 when I had enough ROM (range of motion) for sitting in a chair as it takes a minimum of 90 degrees for what is called “functional sitting” and well over 100 degrees to be able to sit comfortably in the driver’s seat of a car. The taller one is the less the amount of degrees needed to sit in the driver’s seat and the shorter one is the more degrees it takes. And until I was in the situation I was, I would NEVER have thought of it before. Even climbing stairs “normally” takes a minimum of 105 degrees!

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In May and June 2012, my younger sister and I were fortunate enough to be able to attend several TV tapings. It all started when I received an email about attending the Dancing with the Stars Season 14 LIVE finale with Kelly Clarkson as the special guest who preformed her (at the time new song) Stronger. I was quick enough to be able to get tickets, so a week later we went to the CBS Studio in L.A. and had a fabulous time. After that, I looked online for what else we could see before my surgery since I knew I wouldn’t be able to physically sit at a taping for at least 4 months. We were able to attend two tapings of CBS’s talk show, The Talk and TVLand’s sitcom The Exes. We had a blast at all three tapings and knew we wanted to attend more once I was mobile enough.

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The first opportunity we had wasn’t until mid-January 2013 when we began again with The Talk, by this time we’ve begun to recognize several of the employees at the studio where both The Talk and The Exes tape, also a CBS studio. A week later we tried to see a taping of Hot in Cleveland, but were turned away as too many VIPs showed up, at least we were able to see another taping, ABC Family’s Baby Daddy. Up until this time, we’d be given a few very small parting gifts at The Talk’s tapings, but never anything like we’d heard about from others we’d talk with while waiting.

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All that changed when we attended a double taping the week of Valentine’s Day. I had so hoped that there would be a better chance at us receiving goodies at a double taping the week of a holiday. Well, I was right! The day before, I decided to check who the guest would be for the live taping since there would be no way to find who the second taping guest would be. I was stunned when I saw who it was. See, until then, the guest had always been someone we weren’t very familiar with.

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But this time it not only was someone I knew of, but it was who I would choose if I was asked. She is my favorite actress, ever, and I met her in 2008 at the Festival of Books when, Home: A Memoir of My Early Years was released. I could not believe that none other than the incredible JULIE ANDREWS would be on the next day and that I would be there!!! I burnt through three VHS copies of The Sound of Music when I was little, watched Mary Poppins more times than I could count and loved the sound of Dame Julie Andrews voice. I still think she has the most soothing voice I’ve ever heard and she looked just as beautiful (and not a day older) as the last time I had seen her. My 30th birthday was exactly one week after our taping, so I figured this would count as an early birthday gift. And it sure did in spades!

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I had a feeling that we’d at the very least we’d receive a copy of the new children’s book that Julie Andrews-Edwards and her daughter had recently released. And actually, I’ve read The Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles several years ago after coming across it at a library used book sale and really loved it! Aside from her amazing acting, singing, and speaking skills, she is always a great writer.

Well, that wasn’t all that we (my sister, I, and the rest of the studio audience) received that day. In addition to the adorable glitter covered Valentine’s Day themed, A Very Fairy Princess Follows Her Heart, has an ARV of $12, we all received the following list of gifts all with a Valentine’s day in mind. [ARV means approximate retail value]

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• Set of 4 Lenox Crystal Tuscany Grand Bordeaux Wine Glasses and matching Lenox Crystal Tuscany Decanter. The original ARV of both the wine glasses and the decanter is $54, with both currently on sale for $39.95.

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• A Michael Aram silver photo frame and a silver flower topped candle (there were several designs of frames and scents of candles so my sister and I ended up with different ones) the candle’s ARV is $60 and the frame’s ARV is $80

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• A $100 gift certificate for Sabatino Tartufi (they sell truffle oils, olive oils, and other related products) ARV is $100

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• A $100 gift certificate for Parisa (undergarments) ARV is $100

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• A $155 gift certificate for Arhaus Jewels (jewelry, handbags, and other accessories) ARV is $155

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Then after all of these fabulous items, one of the co-hosts says that no Valentine’s Day would be complete without a trip at which point they break for commercial. Longest two and half minutes ever! When the break is finally over we find out that we will each be receiving a two night stay at The Mirage in Las Vegas complete with two tickets to the Beatles’ LOVE Cirque du Soliel show. All I could say was WOW! I’ve written about part of my Las Vegas adventure a few months ago and I do plan to post about the second part of my trip in the not too distant future too.

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But that wasn’t all we received. We still had the second taping to attend. Jenny McCarthy was the guest host and at one point during her dialogue she started sounding like a rehearsed infomercial which gave me a good feeling that we’d all receive whatever it was she was marketing. As it turns out she was promoting the first FDA approved for home use hair removal laser system. I’d been waiting to check with my orthopedic surgeon to make sure this would be okay to use on my leg, so I haven’t actually opened the box yet.

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We were given none other than the Tria laser device. This device is ONLY safe for fair to medium skin tones with brown to dark brown hair, unfortunately anything outside this limited range is quite dangerous because of the melanin in the skin or the lack of melanin in the hair. Darker skin could be seriously burned since the device will have trouble dicifering the difference between skin and hair. SImilar goes for those with red, blonde, gray, etc hair, that the device won’t be able to tell what part needs to be targeted. From what I’ve read online, it appears that this Tria device DOES reduce hair (in the targeted regions only) anywhere from 70-90% after the directed treatment coarse. I am planning to begin using the Tria system to see if it truly does work and then I will post at least one follow up review. The Tria system’s ARV is $450. WOW! The total ARV for all the gifts (not including the Vegas stay nor show tickets) is an incredible $

After having such an amazing time in Vegas, I then attended my best friend’s (the same one who I went to Vegas with) graduation from medical school in San Francisco in May. I stayed with one of my aunt, uncle, and cousin’s. I had such an amazing time. Because of how ill and un-mobile I had been for nearly 5 years, I hadn’t even had to opportunity to even THINK about traveling before now. Traveling was just an ever hopeful wish, a pipe dream until I was lucky (and I do truly mean lucky) enough to find my current surgeon who basically was able to put ‘humpty dumpty’s’ leg back together again.

Without this surgeon, I truly do not believe I would (likely) have my leg today, and certainly not a leg that will (eventually) be essentially ‘normal’. I am and will always be forever grateful to this absolutely incredible orthopedic surgeon and the PA (physician assistant) that he had worked so closely with. They gave me my leg and my life back. I am also eternally grateful to the young woman and her family that I received a new tendon and patella (kneecap) from. My doctor said he’d never seen a donor patella matching in size and shape as well as this one did. Because of her (and her families) generous gift, I will (eventually) be able to walk normally as well as being able to skip, jump, dance, bike ride, swim (which I did for the first time in over 5 years in Vegas), and do basically every other physical task I choose.

Five years ago, I almost died, then I recovered only to find out that the virus that almost took my life, was killing my legs. I remember being told that I would HAVE to be wheelchair bound for a minimum of 6 months to all my legs to heal. But then complication after complication with the infection only getting worse, 6 months turned into 1 year, then into 2 years, 5 surgeons, 2 hospitals, the final tally nearly 5 years after this whole mess began came to over a dozen surgeons scatter over 100+ miles, 3 hospitals, 12+ surgeons, hundreds of stitches & staples, dozens of aspiration biopsies, 11 surgeries, and being told that my only or best option is amputation half a dozen times. But I am here, I’ve been completely free of this monster infection for over 2 years and I’m trying to get my life back on track. So I’m doing something that I haven’t even tried to attempt since the fall of 2008, I enrolled in a class at a local community college.

I didn’t want to say anything earlier as the last four times I’ve tried going to school, I’ve ended up in the hospital. But I’m half way through week 5 and I’m hopefully that this time I will be able to complete the term. Like I mentioned at the beginning, I’ve been making big changes in the last year, I’ve gotten to do a little traveling (to Las Vegas, San Francisco twice, and San Diego) and now I’m taking a college class.

I’d really love to hear about any sort of changes have you made in the last year?

~Jaclyn~

Product Review: Instant Lash Extensions by Measureable Difference

Product Review: Instant Lash Extensions by Measureable Difference

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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A few weeks ago I was approached by a PR representative asking me if I’d be interested in trying and reviewing products from Chrislie Formulations new Measureable Difference line. I’ve been very interested in trying products that support lash (and brow) growth and so I jumped at the chance! This first product is dual ended mascara and primer meant to immediately add volume and lengthen lashes. The second product I’ll review is a lash and brow amplifying serum that needs to be applied daily. More on that coming soon!

I’m still on the hunt for my HG or Holy Grail mascara. In the beauty blogging world, bloggers use this to refer to a product that is the best ever product for that particular person. A HG product is one that they couldn’t or wouldn’t want to live without. I’m still unsure if I truly have any complete HG product. I happen to love trying and experimenting with new products.

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I have very sparse lashes. Over the last 10 years since I was first diagnosed with IBD (Inflammatory Bowel Disease), I’ve lost a lot of my hair more than once. About three months after I’ve had bouts of serious illness, I’d notice my hair coming out in my hair brush, so much would come out that I’d have to clean a fistful of hair out of my brush after one pass through my hair. As I lost the hair on top of my head, I also noticed that I lost my lashes and brows too. While my hair has finally just about returned to its pre-illness thickness, my lashes have stayed very thin. And my bottom lashes are just about non-existent. I literally have a dozen lashes on the bottom on each side. So I’m always trying to find mascara products to give me the illusion of having more lashes, especially since, I’m not fond of applying, wearing, or removing false lashes.

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Enter Measurable Difference’s Instant Lash Extensions. The back of the package says, “Measureable Difference offers healthy, drug free, clinically proven products that provide the ultimate in plumper, longer, more luscious lashes and brows, creating the effect of bigger, bolder eyes. Infused with RegenaLash, each item is formulated with nature’s most beneficial ingredients and science’s most advanced technology. In addition, they are free of any harsh ingredients or chemicals to revitalize your lashes and brows without irritation or redness” I’ve seen many commercials advertising a prescription medication to increase lashes, but there are many serious including possible permanent side effects. As much as I’d love more lashes, the risk of complications is too great. But, a cosmetic option sounds very intriguing.

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I’ve used several mascara primers, but this is the first time the directions have ever said to start by applying a layer of mascara. The second step is to use the primer which contains thin white web-like fibers that stick to the initial coating of mascara attaching themselves to lengthen and add volume to thin and sparse lashes. The third step is to seal the primer layer in by adding a coat of mascara which serves to fuse all three layers together. I do have to say that this does work. And it does work fairly well. I’ve even added a second round of primer and mascara on top of the first ‘set’.

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The positives are that it does add length and volume. It is also fairly easy to use. And I had no problem with the mascara smearing, fading, or flaking. But, this mascara does take me significantly longer to apply with all the steps than my daily routine which includes a light coating of mascara. Another negative is that this mascara leaves my lashes very stiff and a bit heavy, not surprised for all the layers added. And even with sporadic usage over the last month, the mascara end is beginning to dry out although the primer fiber end is very moist still. Since the positives strongly outweighed the negatives, I decided to give this mascara a rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars.

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While I think this is a great mascara choice for someone who is looking to add significant volume, moderate length, doesn’t mind stiffer, heavier lashes, nor minds the time it takes to apply, this will for me remain special occasion mascara. If it didn’t add so much weight and stiffness to my lashes, I’d use this every day! Even with it taking more time to apply, I’d make the time in my morning (and now, twice a week, before class) routine.

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That said, I’m definitely pleased with the ease of use and the results. I was also impressed that an eyelash comb and brush was included! This definitely made it easier to comb out any lashes that began to stick to one another! And I LOVE that this is made in the U.S.A! I’d much prefer to support a company that makes all their own products domestically. This Instant Lash Extensions definitely lives up to its name! I very much look forward to trying out more products from the Measureable Difference line! To find out more about this awesome line, just click HERE!

Do you have a HG product? I’d love to hear, in the comments, what beauty (or other) product that you can’t or wouldn’t want to live without! Have you found your HG or favorite mascara? I’d love to hear all about it!

~Jaclyn~
Disclaimer: I received one or more items from the manufacturer or PR representative for the purpose of this honest review. All opinions are mine. Please see my disclaimer policyfor more information.

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