Lip Gloss -Make Up For Ever - Fascinating Lip Gloss
skwpt 10/16/2009 3:43:00 PM
I realize many reviewers don't care for the consistency, calling it thin. That is the benefit to me, as I dislike thick, sticky lip glosses that become a magnet for hair, grit, pet hair, and migrating birds. I like the doe-foot applicator, and I do not mind that the softness wears off after an hour; it's a lip gloss, not a matte lipstick, after all. However, after the gloss wears off, a lovely stain is left behind, so lips are not left looking completely bare. I own #4, a red-pink with gold shimmer, #9 a rose plum shimmer, and #11, a shimmering deep violet. All look wonderful against my fair skin and medium-rosy-pigmented lips (NW15 for reference). #4 and #9 are cool-neutral and #11 is cool. The gloss goes down very smooth, almost like a silicone, and although you can see glitter in the tube, you'd have to look at your lips in direct sunlight outdoors to see any of that. It provides a shimmery, subtle shine with a kiss of color. I really love it. The tubes are compact and portable, so I can easily pop one in my pocket without a noticeable bulge. The only negative is that the tubes sometimes leak a tiny bit, no matter how tightly I screw the cap, but the leaking is minor and I have never had a wardrobe malfunction with one in my pocket. If you don't like thick, goopy lip glosses or, if like me, you tend to avoid glosses entirely, I cannot recommend the Fascinating Gloss highly enough.
Cleansers -La Roche Posay - Toleriane Dermo-Cleanser
skwpt 9/19/2009 10:25:00 AM
This cleanser is wonderfully gentle and soothing for my sensitive, reactive, mildly-pink skin (rosacea), but it did absolutely nothing to remove facial makeup, even after three times trying. I now use it just for mornings, but in the evenings, I need to use a separate makeup remover first. If you don't wear makeup and you have sensitive, dry skin, this would be a perfect cleanser.
This brush deserves a special mention. I've had mine since 2001. I have used it every single day (whether I am using JI products or not), and it is as soft as when I first bought it, despite countless washings. Even though I use those blunt tips against my skin, it never stings, and there has been absolutely no shedding. I love the almost-unvarnished handle, which allows for easy gripping (unlike some brushes that are slippery). I cannot recommend this brush highly enough for pressed powder and blush application. I even use it to lightly distribute Make Up Forever High Definition Powder to the tops of cheekbones and at the top of my forehead. I adore this brush, and even though I say I'd buy again, I doubt I will need to because it is so well made.
Foundations -Jane Iredale - Pressed Powder in Bisque
skwpt 9/11/2009 5:16:00 PM
I've tried many foundations over the years, but this is my absolute favorite in a pressed powder finish. It might be my favorite foundation in *any* finish because as my skin gets older, I find it more difficult to wear liquids. I wear Bisque (neutral) year round, though I occasionally wear Warm Silk in warmer months, especially if I want to pretend that I have sun-kissed color on my face. Bisque is such a perfect match that I can often skip concealer. The powder completely covers the pinkness on my cheeks and chin (mild rosacea), and the finish is flawless. Best of all (and this is difficult to achieve, now that my pores are larger from years of oily skin) the makeup does not settle into pores, like so many of the liquids and creams do. Jane Iredale was the first of its kind, and it is still the best in my opinion. I have heard many people complain about skin irritation and itching from the other mineral brands, but I have never experienced that with JI -- even over completely bare skin. As for my eyes, no problem, and I keep them open while I dust on the foundation with the Handi brush. My skin is oily in the T zone, and this powder stays fresh looking all day, without any color change. On sultry summer days, I might have to blot my nose once, but I otherwise don't touch my face from the moment I put it on in the morning until I wash it off later that evening. And the color does not smear or transfer to my collar or to my scarves; it stays put! I realize the powder is expensive, but it lasts a good six months or more, and I like medium coverage, so that gives some idea how I use it. Since I have no need for additional foundation or primers or concealers, I don't consider the cost extravagant, especially with the new packaging where you can buy just the refills. If I need a bit of extra coverage, I take a small concealer or a foundation brush and layer on a bit extra around my nose or under my eyes. I love this product, and I cannot recommend it highly enough.
This mitt is outstanding at removing makeup, as well as sunscreen and tough-to-remove minerals. It even easily takes away non-waterproof mascara and dark eyeshadow, which quite frankly amazed me. I haven't tried it on waterproof mascara because I don't wear it. I imagine you'd need a separate remover for that. Though I rub my skin when I use it, I am not left red and raw, such as when I use other kinds of exfoliants. I just run the mitt under warm water, squeeze, stick my hand inside like a puppet, and wipe over my face in a gentle circular motion. After I finish my eyes, I turn over the mitt and use the clean side to go over my face once more for good measure. Then I wash it with soap and let it hang dry. Once a week I wash it in hot water in the washing machine to kill any germs. Sure it gets dingy after a while, but it hasn't lost its cleaning ability, and I have been using mine nightly for over a year. I am a lazy face washer at night, so I love products that do it all. This ranks among my favorites because it cleanses so thoroughly, and then I can skip the moisturizer because I didn't use any products that stripped my skin.
I've tried many foundations over the years, but this is my absolute favorite powder finish (to date, anyway). It might be my favorite foundation in *any* finish because as my skin gets older, I find it more difficult to wear liquids, and my beloved Vincent Longo Water Canvas is harder to find than the Holy Grail. I wear Jane Iredale in Natural (cool) in summer and Bisque (neutral) the rest of the year, and they are such a good match that I no longer need a concealer. The powder completely covers the pinkness on my cheeks and chin (mild rosacea), and the finish is flawless. Best of all, now that my pores are larger from years of oily skin) the makeup does not settle into pores, like so many of the liquids and creams do. Jane Iredale was the first of its kind, and it is still the best in my opinion. I have heard many people complain about skin irritation and itching from the other mineral brands, but I have never experienced that with JI -- even over completely bare skin. As for my eyes, no problem, and I keep them open while I dust it on with the Handi brush. My skin is oily in the T zone, and this powder stays fresh looking all day, without any color change. On sultry summer days, I might have to blot my nose once, but I otherwise don't touch my face from the moment I put it on in the morning until I wash it off later that evening. And the color does not smear or transfer to my collar or to my scarves; it stays put! I realize the powder is expensive, but it lasts a good six months or more. And since I have no need for additional foundation or primers or concealers, I don't consider it extravagant. If I need a bit of extra coverage, I take a small makeup brush and layer on a bit extra around my nose or under my eyes. I love this product, and I cannot recommend it highly enough.
This product is not being discontinued. I wrote Vincent Longo (the company, not the man), and they said they are having trouble keeping up with demand. I have tried several foundations over the years, but Vincent Longo Water Canvas is my ultimate favorite. I wear Porcelain--an absolute perfect match for my NW15 cool-neutral skin. I have been wearing it for almost 10 years, even since a bored makeup artist at Barneys NY pounced on me when she saw me looking indecisive at the Stila display. I was looking for something new, something to conceal the pink in my cheeks and chin, so she put Water Canvas in Porcelain on one half of my face and Stila Illuminating Powder Foundation in 10 Watts on the other. What immediately struck me was how cool and light the Water Canvas felt going on, but when I looked in the mirror, I was disappointed that both looked equally great. I wanted to be wowed by one or the other. So I postponed making a purchase and went shopping. And I got warm. And I may even have perspired a little. After a couple hours, I caught my reflection in a mirror and did a double take. The Water Canvas side looked fresh and flawless, while the Stila side looked shiny and flushed red. So I ran back to Barneys and bought two of the Water Canvas (nearly fainting from sticker shock). To this day, Vincent Longo Water Canvas Creme-To-Powder Foundation is the only foundation I have ever worn that hides the redness on my cheeks and chin from mild Rosacea, all day, without irritation. I do not use the VL primer--or any primer. I apply using a basic cosmetic wedge sponge over Elta MD sunscreen, and I get perfect coverage that stays put, lets my skin breathe, and it never rubs off on my clothes, creases, cakes, or settles in pores--and it is almost impossible to find liquid or cream foundations that don't give me obvious pores. Once on, VLWC is invisible, so I don't understand how it improves the tone of my skin so well. I usually set it with a faint dusting of mineralized powder (Jane Iredale Ivory), and my skin looks flawless all day. [UPDATE 12/17/10]. VLWC has been back for a few months now. There is a large selection on both the vincentlongo.com web site and at beauty.com. The reformulated Porcelain is now more peach than pink, but it still works, and the texture is exactly the same. I HATE paying so much for a foundation that gets dried out and crumbly before it's used up, but it is so perfect for me, I am willing to pay for it.
Lipstick -Jane Iredale - PureMoist LipColour SPF 18 in Brett
skwpt 9/9/2009 9:42:00 AM
While I do not adore this lipstick, it is one of the few in my cadre that I have almost worn down to a nub, and I have repurchased it. It applies soft and creamy and feels as nourishing as my Badger lip balm. The color is long wearing, leaves behind a natural stain, and it is buildable -- so you can get a sheer YLLB look or a warm punch of berry. This color would probably flatter most fair to medium skin tones, whether warm or cool toned; it almost enhances my fair, cool (NW15) skin, but it really does lean too warm for me to love it.. (I wear JI Ivory or Bisque in the pressed powder.)
Lipstick -Clinique - Different Lipstick - Mauve Crystal
skwpt 9/6/2009 7:20:00 PM
UPDATE: Clinique Silvery Moon is a near dupe of the discontinued Mauve Crystal color. Mauve Crystal is the first Clinique lipstick I ever purchased, and for years, it was the only lipstick I wore. Once I ventured more bravely into the world of color, I barely gave this little standby a backward glance, but I feel sad that is is no longer available. I always carried one on me and used it like a balm/gloss because the texture was so soft and smooth and moisturizing, with just a hint of pink shimmer. Mauve Crystal was one of only a handful of lipsticks, even to this day, that I have repurchased more than once; that's how much I loved it. I no longer have a tube laying around for comparison, but MAC's Syrup might be a close second, but without as much shimmer.
Lipstick -Clinique - Different Lipstick - Think Bronze
skwpt 9/6/2009 7:12:00 PM
I feel like one of the lone dissenters, being of pale skin and eye, but I just don't like Think Bronze. I agree that it is more pinky-peach than bronze, but it contains too much gold to flatter my skin tone. Also, after it's been sitting undisturbed on my lips for a while, it looks dry. The strange thing is that when I take the lipstick off with a tissue and makeup remover, what's on the tissue is a medium pink. It looks nothing like it does in the tube or on my lips. If I could get it to look like that on my lips, I'd keep it! But then there's the fact that it contains shimmer. Even little bits of frost irritate my lips, leaving them itchy and cracked-feeling after a few hours. Think Bronze seems to be one of the most dry-feeling lipsticks in the entire Different Lipstick category, which usually feel creamy and moisturizing all day. I believe Think Bronze would look great on many people who are looking for a neutral shade. It just doesn't work for me.
Lipstick -Clinique - Different Lipstick - Guava Stain
skwpt 9/6/2009 4:51:00 PM
I can't believe I used to give this lipstick to my mother when I received it as part of a GWP. After a 10 year hiatus from wearing Clinique cosmetics, I recently bought several lipsticks and love every one of them -- but especially this one. Guava Stain (a mid-tone warm rose) is just a tiny bit darker than my own lips, so I can wear it all day every day with any outfit, and it always looks beautiful. The formulation is so smooth and forgiving and sheer, I can even apply it without a mirror. When it wears off, my lips are gently stained with a peachy-pink color that looks completely natural. It is definitely a MLBB color.
Lipstick -Clinique - Different Lipstick - Plum Brandy
skwpt 9/6/2009 4:47:00 PM
I am glad this color is still around. I wore it in the late 80s and then moved on to other brands, but lately my lips have been feeling really dry from MAC lipsticks, so I wanted to try something else. And I remembered Clinique. Plum Brandy is a rich shade that reminds me of ruby port, a red-violet that isn't too cool. It looks nice with my fair/cool skin (MAC NW15-20 for reference) and copper red hair, and it brightens up my blue-green-grey eyes. Now that I am older and don't wear dark colored lipsticks on a daily basis like I used to, Plum Brandy seems more like a fall or winter color. But the formulation is so creamy and smooth it would be easy to apply it lightly for summer and achieve a very natural look.
Cleansers -Philosophy - the microdelivery exfoliating wash
skwpt 9/6/2009 4:13:00 PM
I like this gentle scrub. I had received a large sample from Sephora, and at first I was unimpressed. I'd been using Clinique's Exfoliating Scrub for more than a decade, so I was used to a scrub that really felt like it was working. As my skin has gotten older, it has become more sensitive, and the Clinique scrub left my face red and irritated for hours (mild rosacea), so I could use it only once a week and at night. I wanted more regular, frequent clarifying without having to resort to alcohol-based toners, so I decided to give the Microdelivery scrub a try. When I began using it, it didn't feel like much was happening. The ratio of cleanser to exfoliant seemed heavily in favor of cleanser, and I didn't need another cleanser; I already had one that I liked. But I decided to finish the sample and see how it turned out. A week later I began to notice that my skin felt smoother and looked much brighter. All dullness had gone, the tone was more even, and the pores on my nose were no longer clogged. I am thrilled that I can use this Philosophy product every morning and not look like a beet. The pinkness caused by the granules fades by the time I put on my makeup. It's gentle enough to use every day.
Cleansers -Boscia - MakeUp-BreakUp Cool Cleansing Oil
skwpt 9/6/2009 12:06:00 PM
I was skeptical that this product would work for me. I have oily skin, which is also sensitive and reactive from mild rosacea. I also wear hard-to-remove cosmetics (matte foundations and/or mineral powders), so I thought I'd really have to rub. What a pleasant surprise this cleanser turned out to be. I just pump one squirt into my palm, rub my hands together, and then gently massage all over a dry face, including my eye lids and eyelashes. Then I rinse with lukewarm water. I can't believe how quickly and cleanly it rises (unlike Ponds Cold Cream), and it leaves my skin soft with no need for added moisturizer. I use it at night, primarily to remove my makeup, and I love that one product does it all. The first few times I used it, I followed up with a gentle, but when I saw no trace of makeup on the cotton ball, I eliminated the toner in order to leave my skin balanced, rather than stripped. I also have very sensitive eyes, but this oily cleanser did not leave a film or cause irritation or burning. I am practically obsessed this cleaner, and I have a couple backups already on hand. I even use it to clean the synthetic makeup brushes of their gels and waxes. My only nit is that I wish it came in a larger size. It's pricey for the size, but I have repurchased it now at least twice.
Treatments -Clinique - Pore Minimizer Refining Lotion
skwpt 9/6/2009 10:19:00 AM
I have always had oily skin so I have virtually no wrinkles -- but the same oil that protects my skin from aging has contributed to enlarged pores. I'd been wearing Jane Iredale pressed mineral powder/foundation for years, but this past spring I switched to a liquid/cream for better coverage on my T-zone, where I have some redness from mild rosacea. Unfortunately, these pink areas are the same location as the enlarged pores, and I ended up with makeup visibly settling in my pores by the afternoon. I sampled literally *dozens* of foundations and primers at Sephora, but none worked. Until Clinique. I don't know how they do it. There must be some kind of astringent in the lotion, and I can't help but wonder if this product replaced Clinique's long-discontinued Pore Minimizer Makeup. My pores shrunk immediately after I applied the lotion and my foundation had a flawless finish -- straight through to evening. By late afternoon, I had some oil on my T-zone, which caused the pores to wink open, but it was nothing an oil blotting paper couldn't handle in ten seconds, and I didn't have little darkened divots of foundation in the bottoms of my pores. I am mostly satisfied with the Pore Refining Lotion's temporary effects, but I do not believe this product will permanently reduce the shape of anyone's pores. The only way to do that is to turn back the clock or invest in IPL (Intense Pulsed Light Photofacials). I read some bad reviews about this product, calling it useless. That's not my finding, but my expectations were realistic for what it could and could not do. For very oily/younger skins, the astringent (shrinking) effects might wear off more quickly, but it's so easy to dab on a bit more, as the thin tube is very portable.