I'm going to review these brushes individually. General notes are that they're all super soft taklon and have a great weight with a huge ferrule and are just generally amazing in their construction. Buffing Brush - Goodness, I keep finding uses for this. I think it's great for blending just about any kind of product into the skin and really buffing it in. I also use it for buffing in certain cheek products that tend to just sit on the skin. I have no words. This is great for powders (to me) moreso than liquids or creams but it can work with all. Contour Brush - Where have you been all my life?! I find this brush to just be perfect for sitting into every little small area and it just blends beautifully. I also use this sometimes for cream blushes and it distributes them beautifully. I find that this picks up a bit more product than some of the other brushes but that's fine by me! I also use this to blend highlighters on the tops of cheeks and across the brow bone. Indispensable. Detailer Brush - Worth having. I use it for spot concealing a lot of times. I also use it for lips or for specific eyeshadow applications and I've used it to smudge eyeshadows or eyeliner. It's the tiny everyman of the set and I use it all the time. Pointed Foundation Brush - Oh, how I love thee. I find this brush wasn't my favorite for applying foundation but it works wonders with concealers and powders and cream cheek products and it never really stops gaining purpose. I saw below in synmyn's review that it can be used for eyeshadows and I'm not against trying that! It's a great brush, though. The head is very stiff and gorgeous for precise application. Brush Case - I actually quite like it. It allows me to protect those brushes and I can do a full face for myself with this kit because I don't really wear eyeshadow as a bloke. I am now going to try it to dry my brushes upside down. (Really, thanks synmyn!) For $16, I'm DARN WELL going to repurchase. I will have loads of brushes but I don't care! I love these so much that I need duplicates!
Makeup Brushes -Real Techniques by Samantha Chapman - Foundation Brush
rebelprince 5/20/2011 10:44:00 PM
I'm going to break this down into three parts: Brush construction, bristles and application. The brush itself is solid. I love the fact that most of the brush is the ferrule. It feels light in my hand which makes it easy to move around and the size of the handle is certainly big enough. This one feels a tiny bit heavier but it's good for the fact that it's a foundation brush. I find it cute that it stands on it's own. It's not a requirement for me but it's certainly nice that she had the consumer in mind rather than the makeup artist. The bristles, again, are taklon. The shape is unique for a foundation brush. I have seen angled foundation brushes but I've not seen any this dense in some time. I usually find them to be about the same as the pointed style and they tend to have the same thickness. This brush is slightly more dense and the head is better for covering large area.s As far as application, I love this brush. I have applied various cream and liquid products with it and it applies them flawlessly with no streaking. I see the possibility to streak but that's only if you really don't know what you're doing with your makeup brushes. I reach for this brush almost every single time I'm doing a full face of makeup. It's brilliant!
Makeup Brushes -Real Techniques by Samantha Chapman - Powder Brush
rebelprince 5/20/2011 10:37:00 PM
I'm going to break this down into three parts: Brush construction, bristles and application. The brush itself is solid. I love the fact that most of the brush is the ferrule. It feels light in my hand which makes it easy to move around and the size of the handle is certainly big enough. The size of the brush is also a contributor in the weight. I like that because the head is bigger that this brush feels a bit heavier than other Real Techniques brushes. I find it cute that it stands on it's own. It's not a requirement for me but it's certainly nice that she had the consumer in mind rather than the makeup artist. The bristles are, again, taklon. They're a great synthetic and the bristles are gorgeous and dense and for a slight paddle shape but the majority of the head is domed. It moves easily across the planes of the face and I love the large shape because it makes quick work of loose powders for setting makeup and it also performs beautifully for bronzers. It doesn't pick up a great deal of powder and distributes it well. I rarely notice the layer of powder on skin but I know it's being applied because it tends to take the shine away from foundations when you're applying with it.
Makeup Brushes -Real Techniques by Samantha Chapman - Stippling Brush
rebelprince 5/20/2011 10:30:00 PM
I'm going to break this down into three parts: Brush construction, bristles and application. The brush itself is solid. I love the fact that most of the brush is the ferrule. It feels light in my hand which makes it easy to move around and the size of the handle is certainly big enough. I find it cute that it stands on it's own. It's not a requirement for me but it's certainly nice that she had the consumer in mind rather than the makeup artist. The bristles are a soft synthetic known as taklon. The shape is flat and dense and the shortness of the bristles makes it great for really buffing in product. It's not a typical stippling brush and is more along the lines of the MAC 130, but as I've not tried the MAC 130, I can't actually make the comparison. This is great for liquids, creams and powers. I have used this for foundation, powder and blush and it performs beautifully with all mediums. I also love this for highlighters to prevent from applying too much product. Yet another winner from Real Techniques!
Makeup Brushes -Real Techniques by Samantha Chapman - Blush Brush
rebelprince 5/20/2011 10:25:00 PM
I'm going to break this down into three parts: Brush construction, bristles and application. The brush itself is solid. I love the fact that most of the brush is the ferrule. It feels light in my hand which makes it easy to move around and the size of the handle is certainly big enough. I find it cute that it stands on it's own. It's not a requirement for me but it's certainly nice that she had the consumer in mind rather than the makeup artist. The bristles are a soft synthetic known as taklon. It's got a great shape and it hugs the contours of the face. I find that it suits most facial shapes and you can definitely use it for more than blush. You can also use it for bronzer and it will distribute it into the contours of the face as well as dust product well on the high planes of the face. I love the fact that the head is large and not super dense because it distributes a light layer of pigment across the cheeks. I like the fact that it doesn't pick up a lot of product and it distributes it well. The brush doesn't really absorb any product which makes it economical but the fact that it doesn't pick up too much product means that you won't end up with clown cheeks. I adore this brush. I would recommend it to anyone. For the price, most other brushes can't compete.
Moisturizers -La Roche Posay - Anthelios SX Daily Moisturizer with SPF 15
rebelprince 5/18/2011 11:34:00 PM
There is something to be said for a moisturizer that I think suits most skin types except for very oily or very dry and has solid, stable sunscreen. I love this stuff. It leaves my skin feeling soft. It's slightly greasy at first application but if you work it in for a few moments and let it sink in, it doesn't have that feeling at all. Plus, after 9 hours or more, I still have soft, comfortable skin. The sunscreen gorgeous and tends to offer enough protection for me. No, this won't replace any actual sunscreen for extended sun exposure, but for daily use it's great. This has no bells or whistles but it really is a great product for what it is. The price is a bit daunting, though. However, considering that most 1.7 ounce products can compete in this price range and this product is 3.4 ounces, it's not really all that bad.
Gorgeous cream blush right here. I wasn't a big fan of corals until this blush. I sort of just swatched it when I was at Sephora and thought it was really lovely. Not too much and it made me a lot less hesitant to try corals. So I bought it. This is like a rush of coral to the cheeks that just makes you look like you're glowing. The creamy texture and the pigmentation make it blend flawlessly into skin and you can apply it in just about any manner you choose. I honestly have this in my bag for my makeup when I'm in a hurry and don't have any time to throw on a face but pictures will be taken so I'd better at least look alive. It's really stolen my heart and it looks fantastic on fairer skin tones. I honestly can't say how good the color would be for darker skin tones, but I wouldn't imagine it would be ideal. I'm not a huge fan of the packaging because I can fingerprint all over that thing without even trying. The price wasn't too bad. It was competitive with NARS, and for the quality, I'd be happy to pay it. It comes highly recommended by me for anyone who wishes to try coral blushes!
Oh, how I love Hush. I'd sing the praises for days but you all would get bored. To be honest, I didn't like cream highlighters until this. I love how it flawlessly blends into the skin and isn't glittery but more shimmery and shiny in the same sense that a Mineralized Skinfinish is. It just goes on smoother and dries down to a better finish. I use this on my cheekbones and under blush to give a luminosity. I also use it as an eyeshadow base at times when my eyeshadows are matte and I want them to have a little luminosity. However, you'd want to use another base underneath that to prevent creasing. I also like dabbing it anywhere that I need a more skin-colored highlight. I use it all the time on my cupid's bow. It's very creamy, and doesn't really dry down that well in the sense that it stays creamy, so it can be prone to creasing or traveling. If you wear it on cheeks, I'd suggest to set it with powder blush or some kind of translucent powder (or not if you want to use a colored one. Up to you.) I've gotten family members hooked on this stuff after wearing it. I encourage everyone to at least try it because it's a great multipurpose product.
Huge size, dirt cheap for the amount you get and completely effective. Okay, I should expand my review and actually explain why I like this product so much. For around $12, you get twelve ounces of cleanser, and you do not need that much to cleanse your face with. This cleanser could last months and months. As far as the formula, it's superb. I have dry skin, and this foaming cleanser doesn't dry me out. It does, however, get my skin nice and clean. I've tried a ton of cleansers, and I find that I like cleansers in all price ranges, but this is the one that stays in my bathroom for when my skin needs a break from my constantly changing arsenal of skin care products. I'd recommend this to anyone, but especially people with sensitive skin. I imagine it would work for anyone with dry skin all the way to anyone with oily skin.
So, I've had this powder since it came out. I originally didn't know that it was meant to replace Select Sheer powder from MAC, but I found that out from my MAC SA. This powder is gorgeous. I have dry skin that is still somewhat prone to breaking out from time to time, so I was concerned that this powder could potentially cause a breakout because it does have oils in it to condition the skin while setting your makeup. Not a concern anymore. This powder just happens to set your makeup while remaining soft and sheer on the skin, not adding a powdery texture on top of your makeup. There is no fragrance. It can be applied many different ways and always looks beautiful on the skin. I really appreciate this powder from MAC. It's quite nice, especially for people looking to set their makeup without adding a powdery texture on top of their makeup. No real flaws, though I imagine if you're looking for something to leave your skin matte, you'll have to look elsewhere.
For what it's worth, I like Chanel skin care products but I had never ventured into their foundations, but today I was sort of encouraged to try the new Vitalumiere Aqua, so I was given a few sample sachets and I decided that I would give it a try. So far, it has lasted 8 hours on me with no signs of separating or oxidizing. The color that was chosen for me was B20 (Beige - Tendre). I find it to be slightly yellow, but not very yellow, so those with a strong pull towards yellow undertones might be slightly disappointed, but for most skins, the shade range is quite versatile. The foundation does have fragrance in it, but that's of little consequence to me. Obviously, if you have fragrance sensitivity, you're not seeking Chanel in any form or fashion. I felt like this didn't deserve to have any points taken off for that because it's well known that Chanel has fragrance in their products. So after eight hours, I can say that the finish is something like a luminous finish, without being shiny or having sparkles. It looks fresh after eight hours as well, which is really quite fascinating. It doesn't look greasy or heavy and it has a beautifully light texture. I can't feel any foundation on my face like I do with some of my other foundations. I even ran my fingers over my face just now (clean fingers) and I don't really feel the texture of the foundation. It's absolutely lovely. Chanel has created a winner with this foundation. I'll probably be switching once I finish my sample sachets.
Great colours that are a bit neutral, leaning yellow-toned. I was surprised at the price of this foundation considering that it offered good moderate coverage with a satin-like finish. It wore pretty well, though even with my dry skin, I powdered it so I'd know for sure it wouldn't separate on my nose. It just seemed to have the ability to slide around a bit, but generally, it did stay on very well. I wouldn't say anyone who has combination or oily skin would have the best luck with this as it does have a very satin finish and could exacerbate oiliness. Otherwise, though... great product. I'm impressed!
Oh, to sing the praises of a good gel cleanser that leaves me feeling clean but not dried out. It's hard to get that feeling of cleanliness that tends to come with a gel cleanser. Do not ask me why but there just happens to be a positive association with gel cleansers and feeling clean. But this does it like a champ, and my dry and somewhat irritable skin enjoys it. While the fragrance is usually a sensitive skin nightmare, it doesn't seem to bother mine. Fragrance is often dependent on the type of fragrance as to what causes irritation so I will say that this is absolutely not for everyone. But this gets my face feeling fresh and clean and it smells great along the way. It definitely gets off all the makeup that I don't remove separately (waterproof and the like). I look forward to using this and it delivers a good cleanse. I would gripe about the price, but I use so little that I rarely worry about making the $32 investment when I know how long a tube will last me.
Treatments -Kate Somerville - ExfoliKate Gentle Exfoliating Treatment
rebelprince 2/2/2011 3:10:00 AM
The idea of ExfoliKate scared me. That's the truth. With drier skin and skin that turns a bit red at the sign of any irritation, I did not want to try the regular version. I was then turned onto this while poking around Sephora. I have to say, I'm impressed. Upon first application, my skin almost freaked out. It was a little harsh, but I pretty much figured that it would be bad. They tell you that you will turn red and it will fade. I almost threw in the towel when it took a good thirty minutes to go away. I was freaking out. But I committed. I tried again. And now, after continuing to ExfoliKate every three days, I have noticed that the irritation has basically gone away and my skin is far better than it has been in quite some time. I really enjoy this product. I think for what you're getting, the price is justified. It is a steep investment, but I really notice results. That's something I can't say for a lot of products that I've tried. So I stand to reason that it is worth the money, gives the results, and especially useful for people with skin that can become easily irritated by other exfoliating products.
Beautiful matte medium brown without a strong pull of being cool or warm? I thought it was a myth. Wedge satisfies all of those qualifications, including beautiful. The matte formula was one that I was hesitant about because MAC mattes tend to be harder to blend but this one wasn't, at all. It's great color, without a doubt.