Wednesday, April 28, 2010
Price: $28 for 1.35 fl oz
What they say:
"Lightweight, water-based tinted moisturizer leaves skin perfectly hydrated while minimizing imperfections, boosting antioxidant protection and leaving skin with a healthy glow.
• Formulated for all skin types, Ginger and vitamins formula gives sheer to medium build-able coverage with a creamy finish and built-in sun protection
• Ginger extract improves skin tone and clarity while calming and soothing redness and irritation
• Vitamin C significantly diminishes fine lines, hyperpigmentation and resurfaces skin, revealing a soft and radiant complexion • Vitamin E, a potent anti-oxidant, defends skin against free radical damaging while also providing moisture "
What I say:
I really like this stuff! I had been interested in buying this product for a while, but could not justify the price of $28 for only 1.35 fl oz. While 1.35 fl oz is more than MUFE HD foundation, for instance, and the price is also less, at least MUFE I can test out in person, while I was flying solo with this foundation. After reading many reviews online, and finding a nice coupon for a percentage off retail, I decided to bite the bullet and purchase this in color LF1, which sounded the closest to my skin tone (MUFE 115, MAC NW20).
First off, this foundation is more like a tinted moisturizer than a foundation, which is hilarious, because their Watermelon Tinted Moisturizer (which I also purchased, but am waiting for summer to use) is more like a foundation than a tinted moisturizer. Basically, if you want something light, go with the foundation, if you want something more medium, go with the tinted moisturizer.
The color selection could be worse for this product, but I goes look like it runs more on the light side, and more neutral to yellow than a lot of brands. This does make sense, though, if you look at the history of the company, and the fact that it runs more Mediterranean in its colors than other brands. The foundation is so blendable, though, that a little color mistake should not be that much of a problem.
Ginger and Vitamin's texture is kinda runny, wet, blend-able, and smooth. Applying this with your fingers is incredibly easy, and unlike Revlon's PhotoReady foundation, this did not accentuate my dry spots like a neon sign. It does cover redness decently well, but areas that have a lot of red, like around the nose, and acne scars, will need a concealer to cover. This takes a moment to sink in, but when it does, it stays put, and is hard to notice.
The finish is like skin, and I did not notice needing a powder to prevent fading, though it has been rather cold here, so I haven't been sweating. This foundation stayed on all day with no problem, and also removed very easily. The smell is not that pleasant, but it isn't horrible, and fades away really quickly.
The container for this is wonderful. It doesn't look like you get that much, but remember, unlike many foundations, this doesn't have a large lid, pump, or a thick outer container. This is a wonderful container for travel, since it takes so little room, so you can easily bring it with you for touch-ups.
I think the best thing about this foundation is how nice my skin felt after I took it off. My skin was soft, the redness I have on my cheeks actually looked diminished, and my skin felt more... nourished? Hard to describe. I had heard other people say something along these lines, but I had not believed them. I really should have, because I would have bought this a long time ago. The fact that this also has SPF in it, though not a lot, is a nice touch. I already use SPF in my moisturizer, so this is not a replacement, but every little bit helps.
Overall, I really like this, and wish I had listened to others and bought it before now. The price is kinda high, but compared to other brands, I guess it's a mid-high end, and on par. The container is nice, the foundation is great, but the color selection could have more pink and dark selections. Still, with how sheer this is, the color selection could be worse. I highly suggest getting a sample if you can.
Saturday, April 24, 2010
Price: $6.99 for 30 sheets
What they say:
"# Be good to your skin even when you’re short of time with these gentle, fragrance-free wipes
# Cleanse and remove impurities, tone and moisturize skin, and even remove waterproof eye makeup, in one easy step
# Contains vitamin pro B5 extracts of witch hazel and fennel to help cleanse pores and moisturize
# They’ll leave your skin feeling smooth, clean and fresh
# Good for all skin types; 30 pk.
# Boots Facial Cleansing Wipes"
What I say:
These are a nice. I originally purchased these after reading several reviews listing them as a nice, cheap facial wipe, that does its job, but doesn't leave a nasty film on your skin afterwards. I would have to agree with that, which is refreshing, because that means I bought I product that works as it claims it does.
The wipes themselves are soft, and are a decent size. One wipe cleans my entire face, and still can work on my neck, as well. I don't know how well this works on mascara, since I haven't been wearing that lately, but I know it took off my minimal eye makeup with no problems. It did take off my foundations and tinted moisturizers, as well, with no need to tug.
The best part about this wipe is the lack of film, and the non-stripped feeling when you are done using it. Unlike some wipes, where I feel I have to use a moisturizer afterwards, these wipes don't leave that feeling, so I really can just use this one product when I'm really lazy. The wipes are a little drier than I am used to, but they seem to be able to do their job okay. Like I stated before, though, I don't know how these would work with mascara (I have heard that they do work well), since the lack of wetness means less formula to sit on your lashes.
If I were to change anything about these, I would change the packaging. I like everything but the opening, which is just a resealable sticker, that doesn't seem like it's going to last that long. Maybe it will last the entire 30 times of opening (one for each wipe), but I'm not really sure about that.
Overall, I think these are great for the price, convenience, and quality. I actually like these a lot better than the MAC ones (that I am still using up), since the MAC ones leave a film when I'm done, and also are not really that soft feeling. Right now Target is having a sale on these, making the total price $5.99, which is even better.
4/5, very good
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Price: $13.99 for 1 fl oz (30 ml)
What they say:
"Revlon PhotoReady™ Makeup - for poreless, airbrushed skin in any light. Photochromatic pigments bend and reflect light to erase every flaw. Complete, yet undetectable coverage. Soft, luminous finish.
- Oil free
- Fragrance free
- SPF 20"
What I say:
I got this foundation during a Buy One Get One Free offer from CVS, and since I didn't have anything else to get, I got two shades: 002 Vanilla, and 003 Shell. Both of them work, surprisingly, but what is strange to me is that Vanilla seems to be more sheer than Shell. With Shell, my redness is just gone, with Vanilla it is lessened, but not completely gone. Strange that Shell acts like a foundation, and Vanilla acts more like a tinted moisturizer. So far have not noticed the "Cullen" affect, as some people call it, but it is so overcast today that it just could be because there is no sun out. The foundation applied evenly with fingers, and dried to a nice finish. Not dewy, not matte, either, just kinda skin-like. It does show any dry patches easily, so moisturizing beforehand is a must. Came off easily with my cleansing oil, but what doesn't?
Man, do not apply this in a rush with your fingers unless you are really used to this formula. This definitely looked like makeup when I did that, and I had to remove it and start over (which did not help the rush, hehe). Definitely my fault, I think. Shaking the bottle really heavily before application on 002 Vanilla seemed to help with the liquidy-ness of the product, something that I did not have to do to 003 Shell (I mean as much, of course). Noticed the shimmers that people are talking about only at a certain angle while making an extremely stupid face, hehe. I have heard some speculation that Revlon actually released two formulations of this foundation as a test, and that some areas got the more shimmery one, while others got a much less shimmery formulation. This would explain the mixed reviews, and also explain why the colors that sold out faster and were replaced (most likely with the less shimmery formula that people liked) have been getting better reviews later in the release.
The more I use this, the more it becomes apparent that this foundation is the mortal enemy of dead skin flakes. Seriously, if you think you have no flakes, put this foundation on, and then give yourself a look in the mirror. Finish is still nice, if it isn't putting a neon sign to dry patches, but I think it is a little cakey at times. Tried to use a kabuki, fingers, and damp sponge. So far, the brush seems to be the winner.
I wish I could find my receipt to return this product, but I think my husband recycled it when I wasn't looking. I'm not saying this product is horrible, it just doesn't work for me. The color selection is decent enough, and since it is so sheer, you can get away with a color not being perfect, as long as it is kinda close to begin with. The shimmer effect that people talk about online seems to be a batch to batch issue, and personally I have not had a problem with either bottles that I bought. Yes, I did go outside in full sunlight. Yes, I did try flash. Maybe I got lucky? Who knows.
The finish is like a more matte foundation with an illuminator underneath it, or perhaps something like Vanilla pigment mixed in a little. Like I stated before, I might have gotten lucky with the batch that I bought, but that's what it seemed like to me. The foundation stayed on all day for me, but there was a little fading around the T-zone. Layering blush, powder, highlighter, and bronzer, did not cause cakeyness most of the time, but I do highly suggest letting this foundation sit before doing so. Layering concealer, on the other hand, sometimes lead to a nightmare situation where I would get a cakey problem going on, and smoothing it out just made it look worse.
I think the worst thing about this foundation is how it reacted to any patchiness or dry skin on my face. It would gather onto that patch and look absolutely horrible, much worse than any other foundation that I have ever tried. Using a damp sponge to apply didn't seem to help, and neither did using a sponge afterwards to blend it out. Absolutely horrible. Seriously, I almost feel like I should use this to find spots on my face that I didn't exfoliate, but I would have to rub my skin raw to get it to the point this foundation would work.
Like I stated before, I really with I could find my receipt, since $14 for this foundation (and remember what I said before, I bought two) is way, way too much. In the meantime, though, I am probably going to give my mother the darker on, and use the lighter one under my eyes as an illuminator, since it seems like it would work well like that. Maybe in the summer, when my skin seems to be in a little better condition, I will try using this again, but in the meantime, I think it is an overhyped foundation that the makers did not test correctly (shimmer), and that does not favor people who don't have perfect skin to begin with (dry patch gathering and sheerness).
Saturday, April 17, 2010
Price: $35 for 1g (.03oz)
What they say:
"An exceptionally elegant eye makeup innovation, this ultra fine, loose powder, with a touch of iridescence, can be applied as an eyeliner using the wand applicator or applied as an eyeshadow using the brush."
What I say:
I have reviewed these kohls before, but this is the new limited edition shade, so I thought I should post a separate review for those interested before it sells out.
This shade is Brun, but without the sparkle. I did have a swatch of the two together, but it didn't turn out that good, unfortunately. There is no slight variation of the shades, there's no background color difference, Mirage is Brun without the shimmer, period.
Brun happened to be my favorite of the kohls, so this wasn't a bad thing for me, since I don't always like shimmer, but really, the difference when worn was minimal, at best. They wore for the same amount of time (not surprising), and if anything could be said, I would say the shimmer of Brun makes it look maybe the slightest bit lighter in bright lighting, if that.
If you have Brun, you probably don't need Mirage. If you have neither, you might want to pick up the LE Mirage first, since you can always find Brun later if you like the color.
This color, since it really isn't that special 3/5
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
Price: $14.99 for 0.18 OZ
What they say:
"Breakthrough treatment. With daily use boost natural lash health. Fortified, nourished, strengthened lashes. Soft-touch serum applicator. For 24 hr effect use with lash boosting mascara. L'Oreal introduces new Concentrated Lash Boosting Serum, our first-ever eyelash serum, with revolutionary pro-keratin complex technology to boost natural lash health with daily use. With continued use, lash health improves. Lashes appear: fortified; nourished; strengthened. Ophthalmologist and allergy tested. Suitable for sensitive eyes and contact lens wearers. Not intended for use on the lower lash line. Made in USA.
Apply at night to bare lashes, or during the day under your mascara. Start with a clean, dry eye area. Using the curve of the Soft-Touch Applicator, sweep serum onto lashes from root to tip, like a mascara. Next, glide the applicator tip along the upper lash line, like an eyeliner. Allow serum to dry before applying your mascara. For best results, use twice a day: before applying your favorite mascara, and again at bedtime."
What I say:
1st use, 12th of March:
I got this on sale from CVS for $9, which is a massive discount (normal price from them is $14.99 as of this writing). The wand seems really strange to use. I haven't used other mascaras/serums with a wand like this, so it is probably from lack of practice. The wand is kinda mailable, so it doesn't poke your lash line when running along the top lashes, and also lacks the bristles that a normal mascara wand had; it kinda looks like a mantis arm to me, if that makes sense. It claims that this serum is not recommended for the lower lash line, but I think when put on your upper lash line, some of it will get there anyway. I haven't noticed any stinging, but it is not that comfortable while drying. Nothing harsh, just kinda... uncomfortable. It does clump my lashes together, because they are so wet with the serum, so I have no idea how this could be used as a primer. Maybe if you comb it out first after it dries? I really have no goals for this serum, so if it does anything, it will be a bonus. I'm still a little apprehensive, since I don't want to mess with my normal lash cycle, but at the price, I thought it would be worth checking out something like this, even just once.
Almost a week later, 18th of March:
I have not noticed any improvement, really, but my lashes don't seem to be having the harsh side-affects that some people say they experienced. I have noticed, on the other hand, a couple lashes falling out. This might just be my paranoid mind being extra attentive to my lashes during this experiment, but if I have noticed 2 lashes falling out, there are probably others that I have not noticed. So far, my lashes are still full, though, so I will continue to just keep an eye on the situation. I have gotten noticeably better at using the wand, which is a plus, and have been using this opportunity to work with applying eyeliner and mascara with my left hand, since this stuff dries completely clear. Might as well multitask, hehe. The clumping on the ends of my lashes has started to diminish, most likely from my getting better at using the wand. I have noticed that if I let my lashes dry a considerable length of time, it might be possible to apply mascara over the top, but I have yet to try this.
Two weeks, 26th of March:
Missed a couple days (because I'm lazy, okay ;P). I have definitely gotten the technique down to apply this, so basically no flakes in the morning. Still am not using this in the morning, only at night. Have still not noticed a dramatic improvement, but the lash fallout has disappeared, and I think my lashes in the inner corner of my eyes appear to be a little thicker. Lower lashes also appear to be a little thicker than I remember. While the number of lashes that I have remains the same, they seems more conditioned, and in a little better shape than before I started this treatment.
Week 3, 4th of April:
Well, technically I'm in week 4, but ;P. The bald spot that I have on my left eye on the top and bottom lid (think of if you sliced with the eye closed) is still there. I still have the occasional eyelash fall out, but since my eyelashes don't seem to be getting sparser, am still just watching in case the rate increases. My lashes do seem just the tiniest bit longer, more than I noticed before, so this treatment might actually be working, just not the miracle working that others seem to have. I am starting to draw the theory that this product works best on those who's eyelashes would normally look really nice, but who have done damage to them, in some form or another, that prevents them from looking nice normally.
Week 4, the end of the adventure:
So I finally stopped using this product after noticing a number of eyelashes had fallen off at the same time on one eye. After a few days of not using the serum, I have noticed no more eyelashes falling out, so all of that guessing from before was correct; this product was the cause, and it was not paranoia on my part.
While I did notice a slight increase in the thickness and length of my eyelashes, the number of lashes falling out neutralized any positive words I could say about this serum. I cannot say if it was a mild allergic reaction that caused the problems that I had, or if it was a common side affect of this serum that many others, besides myself, have had, but I can say that it is more than a little disconcerting to wake up in the morning without rubbing your eyes, and seeing 3 lashes waiting on your face when you look in the mirror before washing your face.
Overall, I would have to say that I neither liked nor disliked this product. This is a conditioning serum, not a lash growing one, and it more than does what it claims. For many, the fact that they are giving their lashes some much needed conditioning attention is probably why this product works, for others it might be that they respond well to the ingredients. As for myself, I do not respond enough to warrent the price, time, and side effects that I have to endure to see any results.
While this does not work for me, if you can find it on sale, I suggest giving this a try. Maybe you will be one of the lucky ones that this works well on. For $9, which is what I paid, if it works, it is more than worth its price.
Saturday, April 10, 2010
Wednesday, April 7, 2010
Saturday, April 3, 2010
image from sallybeauty.com
Price: $8 for 14ml, .5fl oz
What they say:
" * Guaranteed not to yellow
* Durable high gloss shine
* UV Inhibitors
Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat's patented formula allows top coat to penetrate through the nail lacquer to the base coat, forming a single solid coating over the nail plate. Can be used on natural nails, nail enhancements and pedicures."
What I say:
This is really good stuff, and I can see why people are always raving about it. Without using this fast dry top coat, my polish takes a decent amount of time, maybe 5 minutes, to get to the point where I feel comfortable touching anything without my polish smudging, denting, or just becoming a mess in general. Using this stuff, I swear I was able to touch stuff in about 1-2 minutes. That's a very large difference when you need to get back to work. I normally wear 4 coats (base, two coats of color, top), so adding another coat to my normal polish routine, and actually having it decrease dry time, is a great thing.
Wear is pretty good. I don't really know how long it wears by itself, since I would never just put something like this on bare nails, but it seems to wear about the same amount of time for me as normal polish. It did seem to make my nails more glossy, which I like, but people going for a matte look might not like that side effect.
The smell is a little weird. I can't quite place it, but it doesn't quite smell like normal nail polish. I think the color lingered for a little while, but that might have been the rest of the polish that I was wearing at the time,
Overall, I am very impressed with this product. I do wish it was a little cheaper, but I guess waiting for a sale because purchasing more will have to be good enough.