Worth reading and understanding what ingredients are important in skincare. Provides a good set of criteria that help to make your own evaluation of the product. But in my view the following reservations apply:
1.Paula does not comment on theallergic side-effects of sunscreens and does not compare suncreens in this respect. Because of this, her recomendations cost me quite a bit of money when I bought various highly rated creams that my skin reacted to (eg, MAC Strobe Cream, Clinique Superdefence etc)
2. Paula's views on makeup are qwuite subjective. For example, she does not like eye pencils that need sharpening and gives any such pencil a medium rating.
3. Price and her rating often seem to be in inverse proportion, and if she highly rates a drug-store product, in my experience it performs considerably poorer that the more expensive products of the same functionality.
I use all the time her cosmetic ingredients list, so, thanks to this, I can judge the products by myself and I'm doing a good job. But sometimes, when I'm not completely sure about a product I like to go there and read the reviews to see what she have to say. Sometimes bothers me that she gives bad reviews to some products only because one ingredient, even if the product is full of good ingredients, and really makes a great job (i.e. Arcona Golden Grain Gommage), but is just not enough for her. Or when a product has a new, special, rare ingredient, if she ignores what is it, is bad. Also, I hate that she gives perfect rating to her products when her products are just ordinary drugstore-like products full of silicones and trash that I don't really like to see in my skin care products. I know that products really need preservatives, especially when are natural, and sometimes detergents are needed on cleansers, but I prefer a balanced skin care routine than a full of chemicals and trash one, like Paula's Choice. Now I know why she's against natural products.
I like when she talks about products' packaging, though, I'm agree with her on this.
Beautypedia has saved me from spending $$s on dept store cosmetics. Yes I still buy some but I always check with Beautypedia first. Yes I have found some where I don't agree with and I've let her know either through twitter or sent an email. Of course everything works differently for different people. Yes she does promote her products but she also recommends others. Some of her reviews of Olay I don't agree with. Also, some of her reviews of foundations I find to be totally off base but I realize she's looking at ingredients not so much as experience with the product.
- I always take all the reviews on beautypedia with a grain of salt, but nevertheless I do think that Paula and her team are more honest then anyone else in the business and in my opinion you do get your moneys worth. (I used the half off coupon code both times).
- Now I dont always agree with her makeup reviews (once in a while her top picks are loosers for me, but to be fair some mua top picks are also products I have tried and disliked). For skincare I really do think her reviews are incredibly helpful. I don't know what I would do without them. My skin would probably be a mess because I would probably end up using products that harm instead of help my skin.
- I actually check both beautypedia and mua before making purchases which may seem a bit too much for some, but to each their own and I have learned that impulse purchases are rarely worth it.
- If any of you are at all curious I just wanted to let you know that for beautypedia is FREE for everyone so its definitely worth checking out because you have nothing to lose.
To me, Beautypedia provides a useful perspective. It is really helpful to have a voice of reason out there debunking some of the nonsense that the cosmetic companies try to put over on consumers. (I have first hand experience with this as I worked in the industry for years). I think that is exactly what Paula set out to do, and that is what she does. However, I make up my own mind about these things. Skin care, cosmetics is very subjective and just because something doesn't work for someone else doesn't mean it won't work for me. Where skincare and make up are concerned its always a combination of ingredients, desired effect etc. that are all very personal. She just provides another perspective, and btw I quite enjoy her touch of humor. I have enjoyed reading her reviews, but by no means to I take it as gospel. You have to take charge of your own decisions, and Paula's site just provides information so that you can do that! Go Paula.....
I like Paula's book and website (I subscribed at half price). She provides very useful yet very accessible information on the composition of products and strip them of all the fancy marketing claims. I think she is doing a great job at informing and educating consumers.
I got rid of some Elemis, Eau Thermale, Nars, Giorgio Armani and other products that were potentially unsutable for my skin. By reading Paula's reviews I discovered other products that otherwise I would have not used.
It is still up to me if I want to splurge on a Bumble & Bumble shampoo even if a high street shampoo would deliver the same result. But now I make a choice based on objective facts.
4 lippies as I do not like Paula's bitter/critical approach of some of her reviews.
** EDIT: I have now used this website for over 8 months and I do not agree with 90% of the reviews, Paula says some products are rubbish and they work great for me, Paula says some products are great and they work rubbish for me. I can't understand how she can say that something is good/bad just by looking at the ingredients. Especially make up:you have to try products to say what they are like. I hate Clinique and I think it is total rubbish, she raves about it. Kerastase? Nowhere to be found. It is a decent point of reference, but take it with a pinch of salt. Now the website is free and you have to claim the refund within a certain deadline. Really cheap, the refund should be automatic. And the special refund/gift does not work fir the UK. Paula, you should start walk the talk. Less than impressed.
I really liked the idea that a professional reviews the products of other brands other than hers. I thought that she made an honest job and still think in a way that she still does. Personally, I do not have an easy skin, which is dry and sensitive and therefore, I have to be very picky. Her choices and recommendations rarely coincide with mine. Evertime, I have to come back to MUA and research her thoughts and recommendations. But still, it could be used as a second source.
I have a love/hate relationship with Paula. The "love" is that she is doing something that nobody did before she came along and she is taking on a big industry. The "hate" is that she makes her own products out to be the best of the best when they are simply like many products on the market: Good for some and not so good for others. Plus the tone gets really bitter and sometimes she is just WRONG. Just a few weeks ago, I emailed the staff to tell them that a product that they called out for being packaged in a jar was really packaged in an air-less jar. Big difference. They did change the review. But here is where it all gets confusing. She is citing research. But her research conflicts with other research from other experts and I just end up with a headache. I do think it is helpful to have her reviews but all things are not equal in her world. For example, her love of Olay(which other reviewers have mentioned.) dislike Olay. I don't like the textures. I don't like the scent. I rarely like the brand. And yet, thanks to Paula, I go back to it from time to time and end up throwing it away. Then there is the whole exfoliation dance: Her nine exfoliating products even recommended for rosacea sufferers. The consensus is NOT in on this. I could go on but you all get the idea.
I could repeat much of what others have said about this site, but I'll try to add something if I can. The fact is that the general information in first chapters is so useful and sensible that it seems I've always known this stuff...but I haven't. I'm grateful to know which cosmetic companies fall into which corporate families. The info is available elsewhere, surely - but I learned it in this book. The same is true of the explanation of many product ingredients. I don't take treat it as gospel, but as a moderately credible, relatively informed source of makeup info.
That said, Paula Begoun stresses a few themes in her book that I simply do not share. The main example is her abhorrence of anything remotely resembling "peach" in undertones when it comes to foundation. I laugh to think of it, because, in her review of a foundation, she is careful to recommend against specific shades with the tiniest hint of "peach." Most often, one of the de-selected shades is the only shade possible for me, the only one that disappears against my skin. Could this disconnect between opinions regarding peach undertones have anything to do with the fact that my complexion reflects my African-American heritage? In all honesty, I have no idea. I just know better than to march with her recommendation over the truth I see in the mirror. And -- sorry, but I can't resist this echo -- I don't know what it is about Olay that bought her undying (uncritical?) loyalty, anymore than I know who at Neutrogena tinkled in her Post Toasties (showing my age on that one, I know), but her biases can be so obvious as to be amusing. I sidestep, move on, and still feel more informed than ripped off. I've tried, but Olay and I don't get along. I can't counter her info point for point; I just know that stuff doesn't like my face and vice versa.
P.S. MUA's cool, too, but I'm looking for and receiving a different sort of information here...and getting it...mostly...I think.
Finally, I too signed on at half-price. I'll renew.
I have very sensitive, reactive, acne-prone and oily skin. I'm very grateful for beautypedia.com for educating me on skincare and skin products. Before discovering this website, I had wasted sooo much money on products that either didn't work or aggravated my sensitive skin. Now, for the most part, I just save my money and stick to her recommendations and my skin has been happier for it. I recommend this for sensitive skin types looking for products truly for sensitive skin. This is a good value. Thank you Paula for helping me navigate the seemingly overwelming barrage of skin care products and trends and empowering me as a consumer.