Monsters and Critics' Christmas 2010: The coolest, hottest most unique gift ideas and best new products for everyone this Christmas and Holiday season. From clothing to jewelry, spirits to skincare and everything in between, here is one of the tried and true finds for the Monsters and Critics Best of Holiday Gift Guide for you to check out: Monsters and Critics continually celebrates small American businesses, especially those founded by entrepreneurial women that bring clever products to the market.
One small beauty company, Lisa Ashley Beauty, was founded by a local 706 (Makeup and Hairstylists IATSE union) makeup artist to the stars. Her line of specialty skincare fixes has lit a small fire quietly in the competitive skincare business, even earning accolades and patronage from Madonna and other A-List types who swear by her key products.
Ashley is a stunning, former beauty queen and mother of two in Southern California who has worked for years on film and TV series' sets. She created specific products that address major concerns for all of us, men, women, famous and regular folk: Under eye maintenance and improvement, and moisture that does not weigh the skin down, clog pores, and seals that precious water moisture in.
Lisa's entrepreneurial spirit took her from salon owner to full-time pro makeup artist, working with Madonna, Jennifer Aniston, Halle Berry, Johnny Depp, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Heather Locklear, Sarah Chalke, Alyssa Milano, Blair Underwood and many, many more. Her makeup artistry has also graced the covers and pages of Rolling Stone, People, Entertainment Weekly, Details, InStyle and TV Guide and more.
Her creation of "The Ultimate Moisturizer" was born after years of testing to find the perfect mix of ingredients for an end product that can be used alone or layered with other moisturizers.
The lightweight spray minimizes lines and pores and creates a perfect canvas for makeup to apply evenly and stay on longer. What is genius about this product is that you can spray it on over a made-up face, revitalizing a day's worth of wear and stress to look evening ready. Men love it because of the ease of application and the unfussy, effective moisture benefits it bestows.
If there is one eye cream to splurge on, buy Ashley's Ultimate Eye Cream. Many eye creams cross my path for review, but this product works real miracles and even counts a few prominent NASCAR racers as fans.
Ashley claims her eye cream delivers many benefits: The steel roller ball and click pen application combo delivers a salmon colored cream that is almost mousse-like, and helps to firm skin, reduces puffiness, and inflammation.
The lightweight but effective eye cream also has special light diffusing properties gives the illusion of instantly neutralizing dark circles, brightening eye area while leaving a luminous, fresh look to the under eye skin.
This eye cream also increases blood circulation and helps to improve lightness of dark circles with a unique blend of ingredients gives the appearance of significantly softening lines. The cream has a natural alternative to silicone, and hydrates skin while also providing strong antioxidant protection.
Caveat: Do not overclick, one click will deliver plenty of product for both eyes.
Ashley recently created a paraben and sulfate free line of skincare called L.A. Girlfriend for teens and younger women who need good, uncomplicated skincare that works for a variety of skintypes.
With the names "Dream," "Faith" and "Hope", these inclusive kits that include cleanser, moisture spray, lipcare and blemish control are fantastic gifts for Christmas and Hanukkah. The price point is quite reasonable too.
LA Girlfriend "love" and "dream" lip balms include organic extra virgin olive oil, beeswax, caster oil, Shea butter, lanolin, mango butter, essential oil of peppermint, vitamin E and rosemary extract.
Her L.A. Girlfriend moisture sprays are made of a natural botanical active complex that reduces inflammation while controlling sebum and bacteria which may prevent oily/problem skin issues. Pomegranate Sterols and silicones work together to provide just the right amount of moisture for a teen complexion.
Simple, reasonably priced and effective, the trifecta of brilliant skincare for everyone.
April MacIntyre is Monsters and Critics' smallscreen and people/celebrity editor who loves to visit and celebrate small American businesses when she can. You can contact her on Twitter