Its in the bag. The VIP gift bag!

The coveted gift bags at reserved seating.

We all know about the highly coveted celebrity VIP  gift bags at all the Oscar after parties, right? From what I’ve read, these bags can contain high priced gifts ranging from vats of LaMer beauty cream to the latest and most current IPhone or some gadget worthy of James Bond. Gift bag distribution isn’t limited to award ceremony after parties though. They exist at benefits, big shin digs where the host/hostess wants to show off,  I can imagine theres an exchange when celeb “friends” meet for lunch (or when they meet with their agents)- who knows?

What I DO know is that over the past year I have acquired (on a watered down scale) quite a nice collection of gift bags. I’m no celeb so OBVI my bags are on a different level than the “big wigs”. BUT I believe mine must be a close variation on a theme , so I thought I’d share with you whats in them! Alas I have not been gifted with technical devices or cool spy toys. Instead I now have a plethora of makeup and beauty products by companies I never would have heard of had I not been in the right place at the right time. Nail polish, lipsticks, eye makeup, cleansers, giftcards for manicures at the most luxurious nail castles…the list is extensive. As a philanthropic study, I had planned on walking around Santa Monica donating the various treats to homeless women, but, in fear of a not so welcoming acceptance of said gift, I though it would be fun to review and compare some of the beauty products here.

Whats in the bag? A princess’ dream…tons of beauty products!

Murad Skin Smoothing Polish:

Murad’s skin polish, with its pleasant aroma, gives a firming affect.

This exfoliant has a lovely hint of sweet berries in its scent. It feels pretty coarse to the touch. Once applied it feels like little seeds scrubbing. I feel it was less intense than one of those clarisonic brushes, but still pretty strong. After rinsing,  my face felt fairly clean but in need of a rich moisturizer. The instructions say to use this product three times a week. I feel this product would work well for someone with oily to combo skin. It could help with skin cell turn-over, which can be lost or lessen as we age. Its a bit intense for sensitive skin like mine.

Suki Exfoliate Foaming Cleanser:

I would have NEVER heard of this product had it not been in my gift bag. This one was a pleasant surprise. For more info click here: Suki Skincare

Not knowing at ALL what to expect, I was really impressed with this product. Just like many other amazing things that I love,  Suki comes from Northampton, Massachusetts; home grown in the good ‘ol USA. It is a 100% natural and organic. Free of parabens, gluten & synthetics of any kind,all the Suki products are safe for everyone- including breastfeeding and pregnant women. Another bonus: no animals or bees are harmed in their creation either.  I’ve tried other organic products from the Whole Foods skin care isle (eyes roll) and they have mostly been pretty bad, so I admit I was a bit hesitant with this one. However, the exfoliate is seriously amazing. I actually want to look into trying her other creations.

It appears this product would be very coarse and damaging to the skin. Looks can be deceiving because in actuality the exfoliant was luxuriously foamy and gentle- yet very effective.

The Suki exfoliate has a citrus smell. The directions explain: wet a small amount of product in your palms and then apply to face and decollate. The scrub is extremely gentle. After a rinse my skin felt clean, fresh, and baby soft. After using this product for a week (3x/week), I noticed my naked face looked naturally brighter. I’ve even been receiving compliments that I’m”glowing”. No, I’m not pregnant. This may also be from my moisturizer (see Doc Schwab below). I believe the exfoliant is also prepping my skin so that I can get the full effect of my moisturizer.

Panthenol Cleanser:

My favorite little blue cleanser. Back in the day my grandmother told me “the best way to wash your face is with plain water. Everything else is full of chemicals and will ruin you.” I never feel concerned with the Panthenol cleanser though. It leaves the skin feeling fresh and hydrated.

This was gifted by a local esthetician and honestly, I LOVE this product. I can’t thank her enough for tossing this into the bag. And its a full sized bottle at that! I feel extra lucky!! Apparently this cleanser is loaded with Vitamin B5 which acts as a hydrator WHILE cleansing (as opposed to stripping the skin, like most cleansers). This is self-evident. After washing with the Panthenol my skin felt fresh and supple but also clean. It has a light fresh scent. I love when products have minimal smell because to me it means, there are less harsh chemicals added. I recommend this product to anyone, any age.

Doctor D. Schwab Flawless Skin Fluid amd CS Citrusome:

Facelift in a tube. Everyone needs to try this stuff! I’m hooked! For more info click here: Doctor Schwab. Tammi, the skincare specialist, is a doll. Definitely hit her up with any questions.

I honestly had no idea what these products were meant for but I ran out of my daily moisturizer and via the ingredients (and the fact I had it laying around) I decided to give this duo a try. I assumed the Citrusome is a Vit C serum, which I put on after my morning cleansing, followed by the Skin Fluid (moisturizer?). I am loving the “moisturizer”. It is very lightweight and non-greasy. My favorite part? It is shimmery! I haven’t put on foundation since the day I started using this. It reflects the light so nicely, I haven’t needed it! This stuff is like a facelift in a tube. I read a little about it and it appears this line is also all natural- though I’m not sure its to the same extent as Suki. Via their website, I contacted the Doctor Schwab “skincare specialist” and she was very helpful, as well as budget conscious,  regarding what Dr. Schwab products would work well for me. I like their costumer service and this particular product, so I’m giving the brand a recommend.

Hopefully I’ve satisfactorily unveiled the mystery of the VIP gift bag and all its contents. That is all for today. I’m finally coming off this dreadful stomach bug! The biggest casualty of the bug? I am now certifiably addicted to The Vampire Diaries! So…off I go….to finish up season one of this enslaving little devil.