Beauty & Beyond: Favorite Finds for Winter

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The change to colder days and chilly nights also means changing a few other things'??straw hats for wool ones, high heels for tall boots (although sometimes one and the same), bare-all dresses for cover-up-the-holiday-pounds sweaters.

Another thing we switch when the seasons change is our fragrance. Usually lighter to a heavier scent. I kiss my citrus summer love goodbye and have an affair with warmer, cozier vanilla, cinnamon, clove'?¦ok, I sound like gingerbread. Well, 'tis the season.

Now there'??s a way for me to bring a summer breeze to the winter winds. LaVanila Laboratories has created its new Forever Fragrance Oils - a blend of pure essential oils that are concentrated on a sweet little take-anywhere roll-on. As they're known for mixing warm vanilla with all sorts of interesting combos (one of my past faves was the blueberry/vanilla blend), the Vanilla Grapefruit made the most scents for me '?? a burst of pink grapefruit with the pure Madagascar Vanilla Bean. The other fragrances Vanilla Coconut and Pure Vanilla are just as indulgent.

These new oils melt into your skin, so you release rich, alluring aroma slowly. Not a smell-me-before-you-see-me bam!. And its hydrating base of sweet almond oil lasts up to eight hours, twice as long as traditional fragrances. Even if you do need to reapply, the tiny roll-on fits into the trendiest of party clutches.

The Forever Fragrance Oils are alcohol-free and made with 100% natural ingredients, something else that makes sense.

LaVanila Laboratories'?? Forever Fragrance Oils roll-ons are available at Sephora and lavanila.com for $26.

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I'??m the proud daughter of a once-upon-a-time Avon lady. I have the best memories of flipping through those beauty catalogs that were always lying around our house (you just never knew when you needed to flip out the color chart for an unsuspecting house guest in need of rouge). Mom even took me to a local Avon lady conference for new products. My favorite? A little bunny pin with a fluffy cottontail that you opened his belly to find solid perfume.

I might be the absolute last to know, but Avon has revamped their accessories into some quality stuff. Although the solid perfume pin bunnies are gone, you can still get your in touch with your animal side with their Wild Safari Critter rings. They don'??t have any perfume in them, but they'??re fashionable with this fall and winter'??s animal print craze on the runway.

There'??s a wrap-around snake (which I love) in burnished brass faux-topaz and a cute froggy with faux-onyx. Also good to know is that all of Avon'??s jewelry is nickel-free for those with sensitive skin and allergies.

So I say goodbye to that little bunny, but I'??ll keep the memories. Might make a few new ones with my own daughter. Although she'??ll have to know that I wear the snakes in the family.

The Wild Safari Critter Rings are available at avon.com for $14.99.

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I consider myself well-versed. I do. There'??s no Latin phrase I can'??t handle. I can speak Spanish (with a moderately good accent, so say the locals). I can supercalifragilisticexpialidocious with the best of them.

Then why can'??t I pronounce quinoa. Seriously. keen-wah. Not hard. But I always read it keen-know-ah. It'??s been around for 6,000 years, so I should be able to grasp its pronunciation. But every time, I look like a babbling fool at Whole Foods when I ask where the keen-know-ah is.

Now there'??s a new reason to know how to say this word correctly. Apparently it'??s good for not only my body but my hair.

Aubrey Organics just launched a new USDA and National Organic Program certified NuStyle Organic styling products with'?¦you guessed it'?¦quinoa protein. As one of the most complete plant proteins, it smoothes out the strands for improved softness, shines and manageability. Call this potent hair nutrient a natural shine booster, strengthening and protecting your hair and scallop with vitamins, minerals and amino acids.

In the line are two different levels of hold hairspray, Soft Hold and Regular Hold. But my favorite is the Detangler and Shine Booster. As you know the tangles in my daughter'??s hair have actually caused me to go gray. This spray not only has a powerful anti-frizz formula, but organic evening primrose lightly conditions the hair while organic aloe restores moisture and softness. The Hair-Smoothing Serum is also great. Just a single drop is perfect for protecting hair from the heat damage of blowdryers and flat irons.

So now I can say not only say quinoa, I can speak about its importance in beauty. How's that for progress.

Aubrey Organics'?? NuStyle Organic styling collection is available at aubreyorganics.com and health foods stores nationwide for $9.95-$21.

Cheryl Fenton is a Boston-based freelance writer, who writes beauty, fashion and fitness for Boston Common, Stuff and Glamour magazines, as well as her own EasyPeasyBlog.com.

Momtrends was not paid for this post. We did receive samples for review purposes.

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