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A friend was grateful to try out Dr. Fischer's Ultra Care Trimoist moisturizing day cream, for normal skin. As it has UVA and UVB protection and as she often forgets to wear a hat, she found it an acceptable alternative to using a sunscreen on her face. While this cream is not specifically advertised as an anti-aging product, the protection against sunburn and ultra-violet light certainly helps. Although it smells slightly oily, reminiscent of rich vanilla, the cream itself is not. She found it pleasant to use, smoothing into her skin easily and leaving it feeling refreshed. The effects of the cream lasted through the day, so although the packaging is deceptive - a large box for a very small pot which has a false bottom - on the whole the cream is good value; 50 ml. sells for NIS 100.
Beautiful Love, the new scent by Estee Lauder, is a romantic variation on its original perfume Beautiful. This flowery, rather sweet scent would be something nice to wear for a romantic Tu Be'av dinner, but it wouldn't be my everyday choice. The fragrance has scents of white flowers, such as magnolia, white freesia and white jasmine, and the bottom notes contain sandalwood and a hint of patchouli. A beautiful scent for special occasions; 30 ml. is NIS 250, and 75 ml. is sold for NIS 425.
The Papaya summer collection of kids' shoes contains several very cute sandals for big and little girls: My 10-year-old, who's already wearing a woman's size shoe, was delighted to get a pair of light brown sandals, called Marrakech, decorated with blue beads. The back strap can be taken off, so you can instantly transform them into flipflops. The material is of good quality and the soles give adequate support; the price for a pair is NIS 159. Go on-line at www.papaya.co.il to find a list of the stores where Papaya shoes are sold, or call (03) 310-4720. Not every store sells every model, and in fact the sandals we liked were available in only two stores in Jerusalem, so it pays to check beforehand.
Serious swimmers know that a good pair of goggles is essential, and won't compromise on anything of lesser quality. A friend tested the Speedo Pacific Storm goggles, a blue pair with light blue lenses, and found they withstood the test. The shades of the lenses, with UV-protection, could have been a drop darker, but they effectively kept out the water. For kids, Speedo makes goggles in different colors, some with decorations; the Pacific Storm goggles are NIS 89.90.
There are a lot of creams and gels on the shelves that promise to shape your thighs and hips in just a few weeks. Supposedly all you have to do is apply it twice a day and you'll be able to drop a pants size. Unfortunately, I've never used a reducing cream that actually did all it promised, though some may make your skin feel tighter. L'Oreal has an original innovation this year: a firming cream with massage rollers on the other end of the bottle. First, you have to squeeze and roll the areas you want to treat with the massage rollers to prepare your skin for the next step: a post-massage firming concentrate, enriched with Co-caffeine Cx. All this is supposed to improve the appearance of cellulite. Again, the cream feels and smells pleasant, but working up a sweat on the treadmill works better for shaping your body. The price for a 150-ml. tube with rollers of the L'Oreal Perfect Slim is NIS 140, and you can buy a refill of the cream for NIS 90.
Another sweet treat for Tu Be'av is the praline candles sold at the Emma Green stores, which look and smell surprisingly real (I had to prevent my husband from taking a bite). The candles come in different shapes, and you can assemble a gift box with an assortment of fake pralines. As expected, the chocolate scent of the candles is very sweet. In any event, it's better to burn the candles than having to burn the calories after eating chocolate. Each praline candle is NIS 10.
A friend tried the Myokine Fusio Night anti-wrinkle kit, consisting of a smoothing night cream and a set of little stickers called Wrinkle Targeting Fusio-Films. You're supposed to use the cream every night, and the Fusio-Films once a week on specific wrinkle areas: forehead between the eyebrows, crow's feet next to the eyes and lines next to lips. For this purpose, you use five Fusio-Films every week, and the whole kit lasts you three weeks. My friend liked the night cream, but was annoyed with the Fusio-Films, which were very hard to open and to apply. You have to first apply some cream to these spots, then put on the films and massage them in after a few seconds. The price for the kit, available at selected pharmacies - call (03) 617-8299 to find out where - is NIS 290.