Cleansers -L'Occitane - Almond Apple Cleansing Oil
wonderbuy 7/26/2009 7:46:00 AM
This is an effective cleansing oil if you do not wear waterproof mascara. It takes everything off including sunscreen without any tackiness or the need for another cleanser afterwards since there is no residue, so itís suitable for those on the oilier side. It tends to be not as effective for waterproof mascara and I suggest that you first use an eye make up remover before this. Notwithstanding this however, it is a pretty good product and is a lot more natural than SU cleansing oils, which is like a Frankenstein formula straight out of the lab. It is more runny in consistency than most other cleansing oils so be careful when pumping, 2 pumps gives the perfect amount for each use and spreads very easily without any heavy rubbing. The only thing I dislike is the smell, which is pretty easy to get over. The price is very reasonable and performs to what you would expect for the price.
I can see why this is such a popular product however there are several problems with this. Firstly, if you have oily lids, forget about it. It sends to be eaten up by the oil and is gone in half a day. The problem is that if you use primer underneath, it looks very chalky, unless you use a lot. This product is also quite thin in consistency and does not ever set, it dries but does not set thereby smudging at the first presence of oil. I have since found 2 other products that are far superior: Benefit Creaseless Eyeshadow in Tattle Tale and Estee Lauder Double Wear Cream Eyeshadow in Ivory Lace. Both are canvas colours with slight shimmer but have far better lasting power. The real clincher is that they hold shadows that are applied afterwards much better and I no longer need to use primer. I suggest that you use MAC on one eye and another on the other, wear it for a day and there will be a huge difference, you have to try if for yourself. This is a very average product at best and if you have not used it before, I recommend that you try the Benefit or EL before you try this. They are not designed to be long lasting, you can just tell from the texture when compared to other cream shadows that are. You can test it by comparing swatches on the back of your hand and MAC is the first to go.
Treatments -Peter Thomas Roth - Pumpkin Enzyme Peel
wonderbuy 7/21/2009 2:21:00 PM
This is undoubtedly a very scrummy product and is very pleasant to use. Whether or not it gets any peeling results is still up for debate. It provides mild hydration but surely a peel product based on vitamin A needs to be on the skin for longer than what a mask is meant to and for definitely more than 5 minutes. The texture is a soft waxy consistency and washes off easily with a slight pumpkin smell; it also has small particles which do little to exfoliate. It is not potent enough to be a real pick-me-up mask either. Those with very sensitive skins or have not used vitamin A before may like this. I would expect more from this line and for the price.
This is an extremely effective peel/exfoliating product but it is very strong so I would imagine those with delicate or sensitive skin to find this irritating. It is best used on resilient skins that are combination-oily in nature. It is very effective at taking the dead cells off the skin surface and at dissolving debris lodged in pores. It is very potent and I donít exfoliate a few days before or after use and I definitely canít have it on for longer than the recommended time. I would highly recommend that you patch test this on a small area of the face to ensure that you can handle it. It is quite runny in consistency and smells of apple juice. Packaging could be improved vastly, no one benefits from a large open mouth glass jar; any sort of pump would do this product justice since oxygen exposure renders it less effective over time. This is much stronger product than the Clinique turnaround line and gets better results in a much shorter period of time; one application is enough to see a significant difference.
Treatments -Perricone - N.V. Perricone Advanced Face Firming Activator
wonderbuy 7/21/2009 1:49:00 PM
I use this as a moisturiser at night and have found this to be effective at tightening and smoothing the skin. It is supposed to be used under moisturiser but would be too heavy for those with combination skin, although strangely enough it is targeted for those with enlarged pores. Spreads well, absorbs well from a pump bottle. It gives a very polished look in the morning and evens out skin tone. Does not wear well under make up since it streaks it and breaks it down. The sweet candy smell is somewhat off-putting but worth it for the results. I would recommend this product to those who have combination-oily skins that need to be exfoliated on a regular basis and with enlarged pores. 60ml is enough to last quite a while but does not come cheap. This is the only product of its kind and I have not been able to find something which gives similar results for cheaper. Extended use of this product has reduced my need for foundation.
Cleansers -Prescriptives - All Clean Fresh Foaming Cleanser-Normal Skin
wonderbuy 6/28/2009 7:56:00 AM
This cleanser will get you squeaky clean with no residue whatsoever. It is high foaming but yet easily washed off and only a pea-sized amount is needed. The tube should last a good 6 months. The smell is pleasant and the texture is a white pearly consistency. I would however, recommend that make up is removed first. This is the best that a basic cleanser gets and would be suitable for most skin types.
This review is for the Sayonnara/Turkish delight duo. I firstly find it odd that there is a disparity in ratings for the duo vs the single product, donít know why this gets lower reviews. This is a great product due to a number of reasons: 2 product in lower quantities so you can finish this or throw it out after a while, the stain is long lasting (as long as you donít wear balm underneath), a great colour without being too bright but not as blah as nudes and the gloss is a non-sticky, fragrance-free formula which really moisturises your lips. The gloss is however, slightly too light for the stain and will lighten the colour somewhat. Packaging is average. Sayonnara is very bright if you are heavy handed so a tiny bit goes a long way.
This looks great on medium-darker skinned girls i.e. more than NC/NW 35. On NC25, it looks dirty, muddy and looks like a cheap product. Itís also not as long lasting as the matte formulas and I suggest that you try this for a day before buying. This is a mix between bronzer and blush and looks much better on darker skins. On me it made me look aged and flat and also developed a slight orange tone throughout the day. Unfortunately you canít use this as a contouring blush (like you can for Zen) due to the pink tones and the fact that itís quite shimmery. If you are after a bronzer-blush, I recommend Armani blush in #10, looks great on lighter skin tones and is more buildable than NARS in general. This brand has some real winners but also has some real losers, test it for a day before you buy and decide for yourself.
This is a great product due to its intense pigmentation (one dab is enough for both cheeks), itís finely milled texture and lasting power. NARS blushes either pretty much work for your or they don't. They are generally better on pink toned complexions so me not being one of these, this is the only colour that works for me. I would say this is a grown up version of MAC's pink swoon. On NC25 skin, it looks dusty peach and darker than what you think it would, hence a very light hand is needed. While itís true that only a small amount is required, these are also significantly less in quantity than others (20% less than the typical 6g) so these are not cheap. This is a matte finish without being flat. I find the matte finish blushes in this line to be a lot more flattering than the shimmer ones. Also there are so many cheaper dupes out there for the shimmery ones, but this colour I would say is unique and I have not been able to find a cheaper alternative.
This is an average product. For the price, its not worth it. The texture is very nice and melts into your skin but the colour disappears within an hour. If you use more, you will look dirty due to the brown undertones. If you are more than NC/NW20, I suggest you skip it. I have discovered a much better alternative, its everything Maui wants to be but isnít. I recommend Clinique cream blush stick in Rosy Blush. This is great, it lasts, the pigments are more intense and suit those of us who are not porcelain fair. It has the same texture, blends the same but the colour has more pink undertones and is sweat/oily skin/long day proof. The price is so much better as well and the packaging has less room for air. As for the Maui, donít be taken by the fact that the brand is more exclusive. Try both on, one on one cheek for a day and you will see the difference.
Powder -MAC - Mineralize Foundation / Loose - Light
wonderbuy 6/4/2009 1:11:00 AM
This is surprisingly good. Colour is great and blends very well. Absolutely no streaking and colour remains true all day, lasts all day and looks natural. Definitely a mile ahead of BE. Packaging is great, if you donít use the sponge applicator. Best way to use is to place your brush on the separator with holes and tip it upside down. No swirling, no whirling and above all, no dirty, unhygienic lid to clean. Correct amount comes out each time and is quick to use. Finish is less shimmery than minerals by Prescriptives but more shimmery than Laura Mercier. Powder is quite fine and provides less coverage than Prescriptives.
Cleansers -Philosophy - Never Let Them See You Shine
wonderbuy 5/25/2009 11:33:00 AM
This is a pretty good cleanser for oil prone skin without over drying. It doesnít foam a lot and is very easy to wash off. The effect is squeaky clean but it appears to leave some kind of a film behind. This film appears to be for shine control and is definitely not the oily kind of film. Once your skin dries, you canít feel or see it. The packaging could be a bit better in that it could come in a pump since the product is very solid and is hard to get out even when full. Negligible fragrance and slightly minty feel which is very nice, esp in hot, humid weather. I would recommend it to oily-combination skins.
This is just so fun to use and the concept is unique such that this alone, warrants a review. Efficacy is mild and donít expect any wonders or dramatic differences from this. The pump is great and dispenses even amounts of both colours smoothly. I like the fact that it had a built in indicator as to when time it up, it goes from white to clear. It is a bit disappointing that the results arenít dramatic. As far as I can see, it is a lot of effort for just mild exfoliation. This is a professional strength mask used in Bliss Lab facials but I canít ever imagine paying for such a mild product. The smell is great, sort of grapey-fruity and not sickening candy like some of their other skincare products. There is no tingling or tenderness after use. I would recommend this on the basis that using this is an experience itself but I would not repurchase due to its mild effect. Sensitive skins may like this and this would be suitable for all skin types, although very oily and resistant types may see negligible difference. Also a bit pricey for what it does. I recommend Clinique total turnaround facial over this on the basis of results and price, but it is no where as near as fun.
Treatments -Estee Lauder - Idealist Pore Minimizing Skin Refinisher
wonderbuy 5/21/2009 3:22:00 PM
This is a rather ho-hum product. Doesnít contain the level of active ingredient to make a difference yet pumped up with silicones. It does however, have minor oil control properties. This is more of a cosmetic item than a skincare item since the effect is temporary and once washed off, you are back to square one. The effect was so minor that it is not worth the price and definitely not worth the effort. Any other chemist AHA product would do a better job. The glass bottle is nice for the first 85% of the product. Once you are at the last 15%, its hard to get out. Some people with oily and sensitive skins may like this but for everyone else, I say, save your money since the price tag isnít enough to justify performance. The scrub in this line is very effective, so donít be put off trying that.
Cleansers -Bliss Labs - Fabulous Foaming Face Wash
wonderbuy 5/19/2009 12:40:00 PM
This is not bad. Not fabulous either and nothing to stop traffic for. Cleans OK, neutral (somewhat candy like) scent and while foaming, is quite easy to wash off. The soft exfoliating beads dont irritate but how effective they are at exfoliating is questionable. At least there is a decent concentration of them and they dont scratch, they are round. I would recommend this to normal-sensitive skin who find exfoliating scrubs too harsh. I think it is over priced for what it does since you wont get a super thorough clean with this one.