Tango Diva : Travel Stories for Women, by Women

by Christina Santos

Don’t get me wrong—I’m a big fan of makeup… on other people.

For me, less is more—especially when traveling. Who wants to use up valuable luggage space with hordes of eyeshadow pots, concealer and eyeliner—not to mention waste valuable time at the vanity table instead of going out? In addition, I have über-sensitive skin that is prone to break out into blotchy, red hives if I use a product with harsh ingredients (salicylic—yikes!), perfumes or dyes. So a peek into my travel toiletry case will reveal only a few key beauty products—most made of simple, all natural ingredients—and multi-functioning. Let’s dig in.

MyCelle, My Belle

These are words that go together well: MyChelle Dermaceuticals and my skin. My aforementioned sensitive skin becomes even fussier when I travel—the stale airplane air! To combat airplane skin and sooth my poor irritated epidermis, I cleanse with the Unscented Honeydew Cleanser from MyChelle Dermaceuticals. This creamy, gentle wash cleanses and dissolves dead skin cells with honey enzymes, chlorophyll, sea weed, and leaves my skin feeling velvety soft. The vegetarian in me also appreciates MyChelle Dermaceuticals’ commitment to being a cruelty-free, eco-friendly company. MyChelle Dermaceuticals may be a nominee in the 2009 Veggie Awards™, but it’s already a winner in my book.

www.mychelle.com Unscented Honeydew Cleanser 2.1 oz $9.66

To Burn, Or Not To Burn….

I may be blessed with a complexion that tans rather than burns, but no one is safe from the ravages of skin cancer and brown spots. My years spent working at a Medical Laser-Spa has ensured that I never leave the house without wearing at least 30 SPF. My favorite sun-protecting moisturizer is the AHAVA Sun Protection Anti-Aging Moisturizer SPF 30. With its blend of sunscreens, Dead Sea minerals and moisturizing agents, it quenches my summer skin’s thirst—leaving my skin supple and smooth, but never greasy. It’s no wonder it was a winner of Self Magazine’s 2008 Healthy Beauty Award. When the weather warms up and the sunshine is more plentiful, I bump up my protection with the AHAVA Sun Protection Anti-Aging Moisturizer SPF 50. Approved for sensitive skin. Allergy tested. Mineral oil free. Paraben-free, Oxybenzone-free.

www.ahava.com Sun Protection Anti-Aging Moisturizer SPF 30 8.5 fl.oz $22

She’s Got Bette Davis Eyes

No disrespect to the greatest diva of all time, but if my makeup routine starred in a classic film, I would play the ingénue to Bette Davis’ bold Jezebel. With its two shades of complementary neutral eyeshadows, chocolate brown eyeliner shadow, concealer and two brushes all packed into a slim-fitting palette, the Big Beautiful Eyes kit from Benefit Cosmetics is all I need to line, define and contour my eyes like a soigné heroine on the go. The illustrated, step-by-step professional makeup lesson included comes in handy too for makeup neophytes such as myself.

www.benefitcosmetics.com Big Beautiful Eyes Palette $32

Bat For Lashes

Lengthy, thick eyelashes have long been considered a sign of femininity and beauty in many cultures—and my puny, stick-straight eyelashes are my main beauty concern. I am forever purchasing the latest mascara that promises to curl, lengthen and volumize all at once. However all too often those mascaras tend to smudge and flake, leaving me raccoon-eyed at the first hint of moisture—until I discovered Sensai 38º Mascara. One coat of the Sensai Eyelash Base 38º and my eyelashes are visibly thickened and lengthened. Once topped with the Sensai Mascara 38º-Seperating & Lengthening, I can finally bat my eyelashes to their full potential—without worrying about smudging or re-applying. The name is just as it sounds: it only washes off in 38º-temperature (or warmer) water. It seriously does not budge—great for when your vacation involves water, sweat (hiking!) or tears when you leave your new crush in a foreign land.

www.sensai-cosmetics.com Sensai Mascara 38º-Separating & Lengthening $32, Sensai Eyelash Base 38º $28.

Peachy Keen

When I was younger and not quite at the makeup-wearing stage, I used to pinch my cheeks to achieve an “all-natural” rosy glow. Silly I know, but still to this day I am comfortable dashing out with no makeup on—as long as I have my blush. Those interested in an all-natural blush without the sore cheeks should try Revolution Organics Freedom Glow in Sun-Kissed. This sheer, creamy blush brightens up my olive complexion with a subtle, peachy glow—with just the right amount of pink to avoid an overly orange, clownish look. This all-in-one balm can also be applied to your lips, eyes and décolletage to impart an all over, natural radiance. Free of parabans, made with organic oils, beeswax, aloe vera, natural pigments, and never tested on animals, you can be 100% guilt-free glam. FYI—Because it is cream-based and free of preservatives, it is not long-lasting. You may need to freshen it up throughout your day.

www.revolutionorganics.com Available in Blushed, Sunkissed and Bronzed, $32

Have You Had a Snog Today?

Snog, verb: Colloquial British derivative term meaning to kiss and cuddle.
Snog Balm, noun: A miniature lip balm from Australia that fits nicely in any pocket—perfect for jet-setting divas on the go and short on space. It smooths my lips nicely without being too greasy or waxy, and it could work great as a primer for lipstick. But perhaps the best part of all—besides its adorable size—is the flippant packaging of each Snog Balm. The backside of each blister card features various Snog stories—original short stories that capture first, favorite, outrageous or witty Snog moments submitted by customers. Snog Balm is available in four, tongue-in-cheek flavors: Naked, Cheeky Mint, Virgin Cherry and Strawberry Tease. I prefer plain old, unflavored Naked; my lips are sweet as is.

www.snogbalm.com Snog Balm $2.49

Good Hair Day

Ever notice how a day at the beach leaves you with the most gorgeous, wavy tendrils? According to Erica Santos of Studio Lagorio, you can still achieve that fun, I-spent-all-summer-at-the-beach-look from even the most land-locked of destinations with Bumble & Bumble Surf Spray, a salt derivative styling product that encourages your natural texture. “Spritz Surf Spray all over wet hair. Then scrunch, twisting a few random pieces into one-inch sections. When dry, smooth over ends and frizz with B&B Brilliantine,” suggests Erica. Et voile, you’ll have beach hair to go and my daily, low-key coiffure. To further enrich your faux-beach experience, shampoo and condition hair with Bumble & Bumble’s luxurious Crème de Coco Shampoo and Conditioner. Available in travel sizes and made with coconut and murumuru butters, it tames and smoothes even the most finicky of follicles—with a smell that is sure to remind you of your favorite beach destination wherever you may be.

www.bumbleandbumble.com Surf Spray 4 oz. $22, Brilliantine 2 oz. $20

Crème de Coco Shampoo and Conditioner 2 oz. $7, $8

A Fresh Approach To Deodorant

Did you know that the average deodorant may contain ingredients that could potentially absorb into the delicate underarm area, a gateway to the infection-fighting lymphatic system? Yuck. Backed by its 100% Healthy Seal, I love the Lavanila Laboratories Healthy Deodorant. It has a light, lovely vanilla scent, is non-sticky in application and daily use, and is quite a pleasant way to start my day. Compact for travel—pretty enough for counter display. NO Mineral oils, parabens, phthalates, Oxybenzone, Petrochemicals, silicones or synthetic dyes.

www.lavanila.com Healthy Deodorant $18

A Razor Fit For a Diva

No Tango Diva would dare to dance the tango without the smoothest of legs. Trouble is, if you’re flying out of the country, concerned about pressurized containers exploding in air or short on space, shaving cream and razors can be quite the inconvenience. Well say hello to the new Diva6 razor from ShaveMate. This ingenious design is actually a two-in-one wonder: six blades with a pivoting head AND a foaming shaving cream built right into the handle—saving you space and money. Plus, each Diva6 razor is good for about a week’s worth of shaving. Tango aficionado or not, this Diva6 is just plain old handy to have.

www.shavemate.com Diva6, $9.99. Available in a three pack.

Bag Lady Chic

So where to stash this cache of goodies when jet-setting? Try the X-Large Cosmetic bag from cinda b. This bag is as stylish as it is functional. It’s large enough to carry all my cosmetics, full-sized hair styling products and more—and comes in a wide range of unique, bold patterns and color combinations. All cinda b’s are made with the latest durable, poly/nylon fabrics—making them water resistant and capable of standing up to all your travel demands.

www.cindab.com X-Large Cosmetic bag $32

Now go get glam!

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