Primer/ Corrector -Smashbox - Photo Finish Primer SPF 15 with Dermaxyl
HelenaZee314 6/21/2007 2:49:00 PM
I bought the little baby-size of this to take with me on a plane when I was traveling to my brother's wedding. Previously, I owned the regular-sized NON-dermaxyl one. I like this much better. And you know what? Judging from all the problems with this stuff "drying out" and getting gritty, I think my small squeeze-tube is the perfect container. No grit, no pump, no problem Plus, I paid, like $19, instead of $45 which works better for me because I can't use this everyday. Actually, I'd recommend that any one with acne/skin sensitivities NOT use a silicone based primer on a daily basis. I use this only when I know I'm going to photographed (like at this wedding) or when I know I'm going to be in some HIDEOUS lighting (fluorescent overheads) because the result is nothing less than PERFECT. This stuff fills in imperfections --- my circular little chicken-pox scar near my eyebrow DISAPPEARS!!! My pores look NONEXISTENT!!! My skin is smooth, smooth, SMOOTH... However, DO NOT fall asleep in this stuff! It's silicone, and you'll have problems with breakouts, blackheads and millia if you leave it on.....which leads me to the fact that it's not an "everyday" product: much like wearing waterproof mascara everyday will trash your lashes, this stuff is NOT great for the skin. I know the company says it's full of skin-treats, but honestly, besides the sunblock (which just sits atop your skin and 'blocks' UVA/UVB rays) what good are the other ingredients? All that nourishing, anti-aging stuff? How's it supposed to get absorbed by your skin when it's in silicone? Silicone can't penetrate skin! So, that that's the only "gimmicky" thing. Otherwise, this works like a charm! Seriously! Take pictures of your face with/without it....you'll see a difference....
I hate foundation as a rule, but with my acne prone skin, it's a necessary evil sometimes.....I had been using Prescriptives (the color-match one) and then I found this... WOW! I love the moderate coverage, it evens out any redness in my skin. I have "Conceal" and it seems to just melt into my skin effortlessly--perfect match. There's the tiniest, most delicate hint of very refined, very muted, glimmer, which makes my skin look radiant and dimensional, instead of just flat. this formula imparts a glowy, lit-from-within quality to the skin, and I just love it. As I mentioned above, I'm acne prone.....So imagine my surprise when, after a month and a half of use, I didn't have any zits from it!!!! And still, 8 months later, I've never broken out from this! Also, I have used Smashbox's Photofinish Primer with this foundation, and it gives my skin a beautiful, perfected, refined "airbrushed" quality. It was the effect that many people who use BE describe, except I can't use BE because of my large pores. This gave me the whole "perfect skin, not noticeable makeup" kind of look. The look also stays fresh for many hours (and coming from me that's a big deal: I have oily skin, and I live in Miami Beach, which is SUPER humid and hot!). It also doesn't ruin the colors of the makeup I put on over it, so I just LOVE this stuff....
This is my favorite blush right now. I've had this for a while...I bought it a year ago when I accidentally broke my little bottle of BeneTint. I went to Sephora and started "fingerpainting" as I usually do, when I found this stuff. I LOVE: the consistency and formulation!!!!! It's more of a gel, and it's packaged like a deodorant, with a push-up stick kind of action. It's a nice color on me, even though I thought it wouldn't be (I'm NC 35 with dark brown hair and eyes). This is the exact color that I blush naturally. It's much easier to handle than the Benetint, and it's more forgiving than BeneTint if you screw up while applying. It looks beautiful when layered with a bronzer, it's the exact color I'd be if I went out in the sun when I combine it with bronzer. It can also be mixed with highlighting cream or shimmer cream for night. It lasts forever. I've had it for more than a year already! It's never broken me out, and it's always been great. The one thing I don't like is the fragrance they put into this stuff. It's nasty and so overwhelming that it makes it unpleasant to use as a lip stain (which is too bad, because it's pretty on the lips, too) Generally, though, it's a very nice, natural-looking, versatile product. I love it, it's my main blush for now.
On the skin, this stuff feels like a slightly more watery version of Photo Finish (Smashbox's primer). It's a bit more blendable than BeneTint, but it's just not as good an item as BeneTint When I put it on, it looked like.....nothing.....squat, goose egg, big 'ol nada! So I layered more on, which was easy because of the really great consistency and control of this formula. Hmmm....hot pink. NOT exactly "The exact color I blush" Far from it, actually. So much for "the world's first intuitive blush" The color looked like I had taken an Office Depot pink highlighing marker to my cheeks! Not flattering! So, if I don't put on enough, I get Nada! And If I put on just a little tiny bit more (trust me, I've experimented with quantity) I get turned into a circus clown! Another confusing claim made by the company about this product: Smashbox says this has antioxidant properties and a Goji Berrry/Vitamin C/Pomegranate/Marine plankton formula.....but...but...but.....it's a SILICONE based product, so how's the "good stuff" even supposed to GET to your skin? Silicone molecules are too large to be absorbed by skin, and this stuff is Silicone based, so I'm confused... Oh, yeah, about that Silicone Formula: acne/rosacea/millia/blackhead sufferers BEWARE...this stuff broke me out, and I'm acne-prone. I can only imagine it's the silicone. I developed teeny little zits along my cheekbones and hairline. If you like this stuff, use it the way you would use Photofinish: Sparingly, and for special occasions...anything silicone based can play havoc with pores if you're sensitive. Even though the color was all wrong for me, I can see it really working on some skin tones, and I can see it being pretty innovative and easy to use. Me? I'll stick to the Tarte flush sticks....Those give me a better "natural" look than this stuff, they're water-based, and they're a little easier to control than BeneTint (although I love BeneTint too). This is also too pricey for something that's not as universally flattering as it says it is...... I'm still searching for my HG blush, I guess.......
Concealers -BeneFit Cosmetics - Galactic Shield [DISCONTINUED]
HelenaZee314 6/20/2007 5:18:00 PM
I like this concealer! Shade 02 matches my medium skin tone very nicely. It looks natural because of the texture (supremely blendable) and the precision point of the little pencil (which is a great idea...but gets a less-than-perfect 4 from me in packaging because for $20 there's NOT ENOUGH!) Also, this is a 2% salicylic acid formula....SO MUCH BETTER than the weak drugstore brands which top out at 1.5%. I also love that this formula isn't very emollient....that might annoy people with skin that tends toward "dry" when it's treated with an anti-acne medication, but I'm a freakin' oil well, so this makes me happy, and it gives this stuff some serious staying power which leads me to.... Holy COW, does this stuff last! It stays put as long as you don't touch it, but it washes off very easily with my normal cleanser (ProActiv cleanser that comes in the 3 step kit) I was previously using Almay's Clear Complexion Concealer (1% Salicylic Acid), but I could NEVER get a color match, and I hated the spongy applicator and creamy, kinda wet formula (hello? germs! bacteria! ew!) Before that I used Clean & Clear's Concealing Treatment Stick (also 1% S.Acid, also too "creamy-wet" also a yucky little doe-foot bacteria-farm wand applicator) Before the C&C, I used the Neutrogena SkinClearing Concealer which was the WORST thing I've ever tried: Same package as the Clean & Clear, same consistency as the other 2 (doe-foot applicators are only good for lip gloss, IMHO) only the Neutrogena has a near-useless 0.5% S. Acid..Neutrogena made me break out, too...I suppose because of the silicones and waxes in the product. I picked up the BeneFit on a whim, and I fell in LOVE. It's definitely HG for me. It takes care of the dreaded zit without drying me out or making the spot flaky (again, it'll be different if your skin is less oily than mine) Great spot treatment, what a fabulous little tool! They need to sell us more than just a paltry, stingy one-percent-of-one-ounce (serious rip--0.01 ounces for $20?). The miserly amount is what makes this less than a perfect 5 lippie product
OK, first things first: It worked OK for me. I didn't wake up with radiant, perfect skin--like the people on the infomercials....but it did help clear up the zits initially, and it makes breakouts more manageable(they don't happen as often and the zits are not as large or long-lasting). My skin feels smoother and less congested, bumpy-lumpy, and it looks a little more even-toned. When I feel a big, fat red zit coming on I sleep with a blob of the "refining mask" on it, and that seems to lessen the size/severity of the cyst. It's not a magic bullet, but it's a decent regimen for caring for acne-prone skin. My skin is oily, and I've always suffered from mild-to-moderate acne and melasma. I have no known sensitivity to Benzoyl Peroxide or glycolic acids or any AHA's really. The cleanser is gritty and it's non-foaming. Don't rub or scrub the face when you use this. Massage delicately. The toner is AHA based, so there's no "fire" like with alcohol based products, but it is a little stinging...the repairing lotion is pretty useless...I'm assuming the makers throw it in there because while the BP in the cleanser is effective, it gets washed away... so I suppose this is how to get that BP effect for longer Skip this whole system if you have AHA or BP sensitivities, and, for the love of all that is holy USE a broad-spectrum high SPF SUNSCREEN if you go out after doing the regimen!!!! Please! Although I rate this a 3 (and really, I wish I could give it 3.5) it's the only thing that works for me with any noticeable degree of success. It's not great, it's just middle-of-the-road...but it works OK for me. I'm definitely on the hunt for something better.
I have the 2005 version of this... The good: the little eyeshadow quad has just got the most beautiful colors ever, and the lip gloss duo introduced me to Sun Shine lip shine, which I keep buying The bad: The AWFUL packaging (customary w/ Stila, unfortunately) the fact that Stila DOESN'T name the colors in the collection!!!! I had to basically do full-on forensic research to figure out the name of "Sun Shine Lip Shine" The ugly: that horrible gloppy, smeary mascara that came with it!!!!!
Yeah, it's an ugly-lookin' tube, and yeah, it's drug-store mascara, but Wooo! I love this stuff! It's the best non-waterproof mascara i have tried, personally. It gives me soft, thick, full lashes. They look so lush, not stiff and pointy!!! The brush is the best I've ever used. I've even cleaned off and saved a few of the Lash Out brushes after the tube is done, just because the brush does SUCH a nice job distributing mascara! I've even dipped the brush into my higher-end waterproof mascara (Lancome Definicils) and I seemed to use less product, and get more BANG out of what I did use. I think the brush makes the product here, for sure.... It's pretty cheap, too, which is good considering how often I replace it. The cheap stuff never seems to last. I'd give this a 4.5 if I could...but it's closer to a 5, just for that killer BRUSH!!!
I tried this stuff...oh, my goodness, I guess 2005?ish? It came in a little palatte set called The Basics (or something)..it was packaged in a clear plastic bag with a blue-jeans printed cardboard insert....(The usual Crappy Stila Packaging was in full effect). The set had a couple of Lipshines (Sun Shine and something else, something lighter?) and two eye shadows and this mascara. UGH! From the MINUTE I put it on, it was gloppy and hard to handle. It did a nice job darkening my lashes and giving them a little boost of thickness, but that hardly matters with me: I have thick, black, long eyelashes, so any mascara will do that well enough. I live in a humid climate and the gloppy, gooey nature of this stuff turned me off. I had raccoon eyes after an hour, which was disappointing because this stuff left my lashes so nice and soft (as opposed to stiff and brittle feeling). Ick. Unfortunately, it's not gonna be my go-to nonwaterproof mascara. That honor goes to a drugstore brand, funny enough: L'Oreal Lash Out. Nothing's beat it yet, although I'm still searching
If I had not found UD's "Sin" eye shadow, I would've been a lifelong Kitten fan. It's shimmery/frosty, and it does a great job as a highlighter for brows, and the inner corners of your eyes....it's also a very pretty, universally flattering champagne color. It feels like cashmere on the skin and it has great staying power. I noticed, however, that it's too frosty/light of a shade for me, and the shimmer tends to settle in my lids, where the UD shadow does not. I also have a well-documented dislike of Stila's eyeshadow packaging. I've said it before, and I'll say it again: I admire their efforts to be eco-friendly, but when I'm spending almost $20 with tax for an item from a luxury-line of makeup, it had BETTER come with a container! It kind of galls me to have to buy a palette separately....
Disappointing product! The black side completely disappeared, I had the same experience as the previous poster. Unfortunately, the olive doesn't work for me at all...it's too light for me and it looks ashy and flat on my skin tone (oh,well) . It's really maddening when a pricey product from a specialty line falls this flat....
Makeup Brushes -Essence of Beauty - Synthetic Fiber Eye Liner Brush
HelenaZee314 6/18/2007 8:53:00 PM
This is a great brush. I agree with the poster who commented about the awkward way the handle ended in another two brushes. I remedied this by snapping off the brow brush/comb end. And you know what? I didn't feel the least bit bad because this thing is so cost-effective!!!!! It works as well as higher end brushes and it even holds its shape after a shampooing with baby shampoo. Nice! They hold up pretty well, too. They last quite a while. What a great little find......
This is a good, staple black waterproof mascara. A single coat (maybe two) will give an elegant look for day. 3+ coats will give your eyes some intensity and drama for evening. It stands up well to humidity and it doesn't run or smear when I use cream-formula eye shadows. It also doesn't flake, or irritate my eyes......Just about the only detraction (for me) is the slightly stiff, stickly texture of my lashes when I wear this...they almost feel hairsprayed. This sensation increases exponentially with every subsequent coat. Removes pretty quickly and cleanly with a little baby oil (or Aquaphor). Also, when my lashes are naked, they don't feel dry or brittle as they sometimes do when I use waterproof mascara. All in all, good stuff. I wish it would last longer for the price, but I'd buy it again. It does what it says and it's a good product.
Yuck, yuck, yuck..... This is Stila's only true strike-out as far as I'm concerned. This stuff is too greasy for facial use, too glittery for daytime use and this just generally made me look like something from the movie "Goldfinger" Only use this on the body, and only use it for serious drama (New Year's Eve, night-club-hopping, rock concert...stuff like that) . It's not very "luminizing" It just makes a person look like one of those books that has gilded pages! Too garish!!!!!
This shadow is a richly pigmented deep coffee color with the most refined, delicate, goldy-champagne colored glimmer to it. It makes a beautiful, versatile liner (use it wet, use it dry, keep it thin, smudge it out) and when used as a crease shade it gives marvelous depth and polish to the finished eye. Very, very, very pretty and eminently wearable!!!! My HG liner. Day or night....... The only thing I cannot STAND about Stila is the packaging. I will give the company props for its effort to be more ecologically friendly, but when I buy a luxury product, a container SHOULD NOT be an option!!!!!!!!! It's a real turn-off that Stila packages its shadows this way, but that's my only complaint.