In the Mirror

15 Must-Try Beauty Multitaskers under $120

By Charlotte on August 15, 2014 6:01 AM

My sister Pam is the queen of multitasking. She often handles email, grocery shops and cooks dinner while on the phone with me, never missing a beat in the conversation.

Wouldn't it be nice if your beauty products were so versatile? That's where these 15 go-getters excel. Made to tackle several to-dos at once, they can help you save steps, cash and space in your vanity. And with prices ranging from about $20 to $120, there's something for every budget.

The Jojoba Company Australia's 100% Natural Jojoba

Jojoba 81.jpgAlthough it contains only one ingredient, this beauty powerhouse acts as a natural moisturizer and skin soother; makeup remover; hair, scalp, hand and cuticle conditioner, and much more. It gets its strength from Australian-grown jojoba, a naturally hydrating antioxidant rich in vitamins A, D and E.  

Using a few drops after cleansing morning and night moisturizes my face while helping smooth lines and wrinkles. This golden liquid may look like oil but it saturates skin without leaving a slimy film or too much shine. And so far, so good - no breakouts! Tight on time? You can skip your normal cleansing and gently remove makeup and hydrate your skin in one step with this paraben-free formula.

This one-ingredient beauty powerhouse gets its strength from Australian-grown jojoba, a naturally hydrating antioxidant rich in vitamins A, D and E.  

You can use it alone or to help your moisturizer work even better. It's also a soothing all-over body moisturizer. It softens cuticles as well as rough spots on your hands and feet for a luxurious mani-pedi. Plus, adding a touch to your hair before or after styling helps control frizz, boost shine and tame flyaways. ($19.95 for 1 ounce; $29.95 for 2.0 ounces at Stpwellness.com)

 Color Your SmileSummer Fun blob 78.jpgSummer Fun 50.jpg

This talented lip gloss delivers dazzling color, super shine and a big dose of moisture while increasing lip size and reducing wrinkling. Collagen peptides help speed cell renewal so lip plumping is safe and painless (no tingling!).

Never sticky feeling, this Boomerlicious pick comes in 20 stunning classic and exotic shades. Feeling happy and playful? Try Summer Fun, a lively orange-red that's easy to wear. Ready for cooler weather? You'll fall for deep-wine Seduction.

Summer Fun is a lively orange-red gloss that's easy to wear.

The rich colors won't fade, feather or bleed. And a lighted applicator simplifies perking up your pucker when your eyesight is uncooperative (a little light always help me focus) or the room isn't well-lit. ($22 - $24 at Whiteninglighting.com)

Olay Total Effects 7-in-1 Moisturizer + Serum Duo

A one-step anti-aging regime, this moisturizer and serum duo combines the most concentrated formula in Olay's Total Effects family with broad spectrum SPF 15 protection. Bonus! This dermatologist-tested pick aids in reducing the look of fine lines, wrinkles and pores. It also improves skin texture and tone, hydrates and delivers a healthy glow.

T03 TE Moisturizer + Serum Duo 75.jpghis non-greasy day cream includes moisturizing glycerin and panthenol to plump and smooth skin while evening out your color. Micronized particles help smooth imperfections. And a potent blend of niacinamide and n-acetyl glucosamine fights aging.

Used after cleansing, it's simple to spread on and soaks in quickly with a little rubbing. It leaves skin feeling silky soft (so long flaky dryness!). You get just the right amount of shine and a barely-there scent. Even better, surveys have shown 72 percent or more of users notice improvements in firmness, tone, texture, moisturizing and brightness as well as in the look of fine lines, wrinkles and pores. ($23.99 - $26.00 for 1.35 ounces at Olay.com and where Olay products are sold)

This non-greasy day cream combines moisturizer with an anti-aging serum and broad spectrum SPF 15 protection.


Mally The Perfect Bright Lip Kit

This glam set from makeup artist Mally Roncal makes it easy to play up your pout. It includes two vibrant lip pencils plus a sharpener:

Evercolor Shaping Lip Pencil - You start by using this colorful base to fill in your lips. It blurs lines and guards against feathering so your smile looks younger.04 mPerfect Bright Lip Sexy Siren 263.jpg

7-in-1 Lip Magnifier - The matching lip enhancer puts a smoother, treatment, hydrator, primer, pencil, color and gloss in one helpful crayon. Used as a top coat, it gives your lips a lift and leaves them velvety soft with a touch of sheen.

I'm wild about the look and feel of this terrific twosome. They keep my lips moist and comfortable while delivering knockout color that stays put even when I'm constantly sipping green tea. Nice!

The Perfect Bight Lip Kit is a standout in coral-hued Sexy Siren.

You can choose from two gorgeous shades: Sexy Siren, a standout coral that's one of my favs, or Frisky Fuschia, a deep pink-hued red that's on my wish list. ($26 at MallyBeauty.com)

05 HCC 2 78.jpgLaura Mercier High Coverage Concealer

Laura Mercier's 3-in-1 concealer covers dark under-eye circles while helping remove puffiness and brightening skin. Rich in color, this dermatologist- and ophthalmologist-tested formula combines good-for-you honey, vitamin E and fruit acid to nourish and smooth skin.

I couldn't wait to try this newbie because I constantly struggle with raccoon-like areas under my eyes. Another winner from Laura Mercier, this eye brightener goes on easily, covers and blends beautifully, and doesn't sink into fine lines. Dabbing a teeny, tiny dot under each eye helps me look fresher and more rested. And since a little goes such a long way and lasts all day, this one's a great value.

This 3-in-1 eye brightener from Laura Mercier covers and blends beautifully and doesn't sink into fine lines.

Available in 12 shades ranging from light beige to deep, this fragrance- and oil-free must have is safe for all skin types. ($28 for .27 ounces at Sephora and LauraMercier.com)

06 green_primer 115.jpgPur Minerals Correcting Primer Redness Reducer

Pur Minerals' clever color corrector brightens and firms skin while reducing redness from breakouts and other irritations.

If you're prone to red splotches like me, this minty green cream can be a life saver. Spreading it on after moisturizing tones down the red and gives my complexion a more even tone. It's simple to blend, lasts all day and helps my foundation look better because it doesn't have to do battle with redness.

Now available in an easy-to-use tube, this top-rated makeup plus skin care combo is vegan friendly and free of parabens and gluten. ($31 for 1 ounce at PurMinerals.com)07 Miracle Balm 142.jpg

Pur Minerals' minty green color corrector stamps out redness while brightening and firming skin.

Sara McNamara Miracle Skin Transformer Miracle Balm

Handy for treating irritation, this creamy oil can be used for everything from hydrating chapped lips to soothing skin chafed by shaving. The innovative formula blends more than 30 moisturizers and emollient ingredients including Manuka Honey, Japanese Licorice Root Extract, Tamanu Oil, Evening Primrose and Mountain Sage Oil.

This creamy oil is handy for everything from hydrating chapped lips to soothing bug bites.

I was soooo happy to have this skin conditioner in the house last week. It helped take the itch out of too many bug bites to count. (Note to self: Wear mosquito repellent the next time you relax by the backyard fountain!) What a relief!

Made to hydrate, heal and relieve redness, it also comforts skin aggravated by too much sun, cold or wind exposure; waxing, or other cosmetic treatments. ($36 for 1.5 ounces at Ulta and Ulta.com)

MyChelle Dermaceuticals New Anti-Aging Skin Care Duo

08 RRS_1oz_Bottle 86.jpgThese two new multitaskers from MyChelle Dermaceuticals use natural ingredients to nourish skin and improve its appearance:

Remarkable Retinal Serum - This tireless yellow cream helps soften fine lines, reduce redness, fade sun spots, enhance skin tone and prevent breakouts. It blends Retinal (the super-hero version of vitamin A known for its anti-aging benefits), Orange Plant Stem Cells and Ceramide 3 to speed cell turnover and boost collagen reproduction.

Got sensitive skin? No worries, this good-for-you pick won't clog pores or cause other skin irritations. Used regularly before bed, it's said to reduce fine lines by 42 percent and cut redness by 70 percent in just four weeks. ($47.50 for 1 ounce)

MyChelle Dermaceuticals new night cream helps soften fine lines, reduce redness, fade sun spots, enhance skin tone and prevent breakouts.

WST_.27oz_tube_cap.jpgWrinkle Spot Treatment - Need help now? This concentrated treatment uses an age-defying mixture of fruit extracts and peptides to instantly plump skin. Applied with a stainless steel rolling ball, it stimulates collagen, relaxes expression lines, restores skin elasticity, and firms and tightens skin.

I was surprised at the difference I saw after rolling it across my furrowed forehead just once. Although I'll still never give up bangs, my creases weren't nearly as noticeable. You can pull out this line softener anytime you need a little lift but it's said to reduce the depth of wrinkles as much as 47 percent when used twice daily for 28 days. ($38.50 for .27 ounces)

Wrinkle Spot Treatment instantly plumps skin with the help of a stainless steel rolling ball applicator.

Like all MyChelle products, these Boomer buddies are made without harmful chemicals or added fragrances. Plus, they're gluten free and vegan friendly. (Available at Whole Foods Market and MyChelle.com)

jane iredale PurePressed Base Mineral Foundation

This busy girl's dream puts the benefits of a foundation, powder, concealer and sunscreen in one pretty compact. The antioxidant-packed mineral formula provides broad spectrum SPF 20 protection that's water resistant up to 40 minutes while minimizing pores and fine lines.

10 PPBase Warm Sienna 232.jpgJane Iredale herself told me about this fab 4-in-1 when I interviewed her last spring, saying she never leaves home without it. Designed to look like your skin only better, it contains Algae Extracts that nourish mature skin (mine), sooth sensitive skin (mine again), help prevent moisture loss (I suffer from dryness too) and aid in reversing UV damage (and I grew up in the sun-worshipping 70s!).

Although easy to apply wet or dry, I like brushing this skin-kind option on as a powder. You can swirl it on with a light touch or layer minerals over your face and neck for more coverage. Either way, it does a lovely job evening out your complexion without looking too shiny or heavy and is so airy you feel au natural.

Jane Iredale says she never leaves home without this fab 4-in-1 mineral foundation.

Light, golden-toned Warm Sienna is my go-to shade but with 24 options, there's sure to be one that complements your skin tone. ($52 for the .35-ounce base and compact; $40 refill at janeiredale.com, Soft Surroundings and fine spas and salons, resorts, apothecaries and medical offices)

jane iredale D2O Hydration Spray

HydrationSpray_D20.29HR.jpgThe perfect follow up to Jane's PurePressed Base, this certified-organic aromatherapy spray pumps moisture into your skin. A blend of ylang ylang, chamomile and myrrh extracts, it helps plump skin cells for a more youthful look while setting the mineral makeup and calming and protecting your complexion.

I enjoy using this facial spritz after applying Jane's minerals. Besides adding to their staying power, it helps conceal pores and fine lines, gives me a nice glow and soothes my soul with the relaxing scent of ylang ylang.

Sized so it's easy to tote, this refreshing spray is also nice to have in your bag. A little spritz can be ever so refreshing after being out in the sun, fighting lots of wind or anytime your skin feels parched. ($27 for 3.04 ounces at janeiredale.com, Soft Surroundings and fine spas and salons, resorts, apothecaries and medical offices)

This D2O facial spritz helps plump skin cells while setting mineral makeup and calming and protecting your complexion.

Sculpt Secret Facial Sculpting Serum

Made to target fat pockets and sagging skin, this contouring treatment helps define and slim the face, chin and neck. Sculpt Secret blends purified seaweed extract with other botanicals to help reduce double-chin trouble, define the jawline, shape cheekbones and tighten the neck area.

Sculpt107.jpgThis facial-workout-in-a-tube has small, stainless steel beads in the top of the applicator. You squeeze the cream onto your problem area (take that pudgy jawline!), using the metal balls to massage the serum into your skin for about 30 seconds twice a day. The beads stimulate micro-circulation to boost metabolism and speed up the sculpting process. Combined with the serum, they help trapped fluids and fat melt away and encourage collagen buildup.

Clinical studies have shown 80 percent or more of users saw improvements in their chin, jawline, cheekbones and/or neck in as little as two to four weeks. ($69 at Soft Surroundings stores and softsurroundings.com)

Sculpt Secret goes to work on double-chin trouble, defining the jawline, shaping cheekbones and tightening the neck area. 


emerginC Earth Hydrating Phytelene Cream

emerginC 's classic skin quencher recently got a makeover. The new formula includes Chronocylin, a chronopeptide that fights aging by encouraging vitamin D formation, cellular repair and renewal. It also contains plant-based minerals, antioxidants and vitamins designed to smooth fine lines and wrinkles while upping collagen and elastin production and improving tone and texture.Earth236.jpg

I adore spreading this hard-working cream on my face and neck in the morning after cleansing. The much-needed burst of moisture refreshes my dry skin without feeling heavy or looking greasy so I can apply foundation immediately afterwards. There's no unpleasant scent. And you can layer it over your favorite emerginC serum and/or use it as a night cream.

In a four-week trial study, 80 percent of volunteers felt their skin became firmer and wrinkles were less noticeable with continued use. Like other emerginC products, this medical-grade skin treatment is paraben and fragrance free. ($82 for 1.7 ounces at emerginc.com and leading spas)

This medical-grade treatment from emerginC fights aging by encouraging vitamin D formation, cellular repair and renewal.

NeriumAD Age Defying Treatment

ThiNerium Bottle_RGB103.jpgs lightweight night cream works to soften fine lines and wrinkles, discolorations, enlarged pores and uneven skin texture while you sleep. Developed after more than 10 years of research and testing, it's made with plant-based ingredients like Nerium oleander extract shown to have powerful antioxidant properties.

Putting a thin layer (4 to 5 pumps) of this dermatologist-tested treatment on my face and neck before bed makes my skin feel tighter immediately. Both the light, natural scent and any signs of cream disappear quickly so I can hop into bed without scaring Bob or messing up my pretty silk pillowcase. Yes!

But you don't have to stop there. This anti-aging workhorse can also be used on your décolletage, arms, hands, elbows, knees and other areas of concern. Whatever your choice, it's said to provide a 30 percent reduction in wrinkles and discolorations in as little as 30 days of use.

Approved for all skin types, NeriumAD contains no added fragrances, parabens or other harmful ingredients. ($110 at 1 ounce at MyNerium.com)

An anti-aging workhorse, NeriumAD is made with plant-based ingredients shown to have powerful antioxidant properties.MITOQ Bottle80.jpg

MitoQ Moisturizing Anti-Aging Serum

This new anti-aging face cream hydrates skin while delivering potent antioxidant protection. Powered by a patented cell-rejuvenating molecule, the hypoallergenic formula encourages natural collagen and elastin production. It tackles dryness; helps heal and prevent fine lines and wrinkles; fades scars, brown spots and other discolorations, and reduces blemishes. Whew!

Meant to simplify your skincare routine, this doctor-developed lotion does double duty as a day and night cream. You apply it after cleansing and toning in place of a moisturizer. Using MitoQ is a treat because it gives my always-thirsty skin a healthy glow without feeling slick, soaks in instantly and has no noticeable fragrance. I've focused this skin-brightening pro on my face and neck. But it can also help smooth and lighten your décolletage and the back of your hands.

With daily use, MitoQ is said to help reduce the look of fine lines and scars within a month.

With daily use, this skin friend is said to help reduce the look of fine lines and scars within 30 days. It also replenishes your skin's natural antioxidant levels giving you better protection from UV rays and chemicals that cause oxidative damage. ($119 for 1.7 ounces. at MitoQ.com)

We'd like to shout out a big "Thank You" to the brands in this post for providing free samples for review and testing.

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By Laura Cipullo and Lisa Mikus, authors of Everyday Diabetes Meals
Image credit: Colin Erricson

Prepare your own Mexican quick fix with this Chipotle-inspired bowl. Carbs are moderated by filling the bowl with beans, extra veggies and chicken. No need for rice, since the beans count as carbs.


If you love tomatoes, increase the quantity to 1/2 cup, but note that the carbohydrates will also increase.

If preparing this recipe for one person, cut all of the ingredients in half. Or simply prepare the full recipe up to the end of step 2 and store leftover chicken and vegetable-bean mixture in separate airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Reheat in the microwave on High for 1 to 2 minutes, or until heated through, and continue with step 3.

Health Bite: The iron, calcium, magnesium, manganese, copper and zinc in black beans help to keep bones strong and healthy.

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