It's a bit difficult to explain, but I'll give it a shot. Normally, I like, love, dislike, or hate a perfume. This one...I can't pin it down. Per the package insert: Magnolia notes are rendered transparent with fresh citrus and neroli accents. I got an initial blast of lemonheads, and immediately started looking for it online! About 15 minutes in, an almost cilantro-ish herbal followed by a whisper of magnolia/soft lemon took over. Not powdery at all, just very clear and green. I don't dislike it, but--you ever have to stay the night at someone's house unexpectedly? It felt like I'd used someone else's shampoo, soap, conditioner, and lotion. Kind of like I've borowed someone else's skin, maybe? I think magnolia, though I love the scent of the flower, just isn't me when it comes to perfume. Lasting power was about 4 hours.
This is NOT a reformulation--I have this EDP in both the old and new bottles, and they are identical. The new bottle is absolutely beautiful, and will stand up to the most gorgeous bottles in your collection. The old one is one of the most hideous things I've ever seen--clearly an example of the worst of the 1980's. I received a sample of this as a swap extra, and am eternally grateful for it. One of my favorite perfumes so far--I'm actually a little embarassed at how many backup bottles I have! Fortunately, there was a pricing change at Nordstrom, and since the price is printed on the box all that stock was moved to various discounters, including TJMaxx. Notes are as follows: Top notes: Marigold, Freesia, Tangerine; Middle Notes: Night Blooming Jasmine, Apricot skin, white rose; Base Notes: Amber, Vanilla, Sandalwood. I get mostly tangerine up top, then it rolls into a lovely blend of the rest of the notes. I usually can’t do sandalwood at all, but this one is subtle and very well blended. Lasting power on me is about 8 hours, so I don't have to carry a decant. Would definitely buy again, and if you're a citrus/jasmine/vanilla/amber person, I highly recommend snapping this up!
Lotions/ Creams -Thymes Limited - Thymes Essentials AHA Body Lotion
TwoBostons 1/27/2010 10:25:00 PM
Like Thymes' other body lotions, this one moisturizes well, absorbs nicely, and lasts a long time. The unique thing about this one is the scent. It smells exactly like lemon pith. Not lemon peel, not lemon juice, pith. It's very pleasant and not overpowering. You know how some 'natural' scented lotions are a little too herbally? This one isn't. Doesn't scream citrus & sugar, either. Come to think about it, it reminds me a little of Celestial Seasonings' Lemon Zinger tea. It's a bit too energizing to wear to bed, in my opinion, but would be a fine wake-up fragrance. I wouldn't repurchase as I generally prefer a cleaner scent, but I'd keep it if I received it as a gift.
Cherry-Vanilla milkshake. With real cherries and real vanilla. I didn't pick up on the synthetic notes mentioned by some other reviewers. Not unpleasant, but too candy-sweet for me, even after the drydown. Pity, because the bottle is absolutely gorgeous. Lasting power was about 5 hours for the EDP, and I didn't apply much. Wouldn't repurchase, but the bottle would look sooo pretty on a dresser...
I couldn't wait to try this one, and was sooo disappointed. Smells like honeyed baked goods with floral room spray on them. So sweet, so heavy, so thick. I had to scrub it off, as it was just too much for me. Staying power, of course, was amazing, lol! Definitely worth a try, though, especially if you're still feeling your way around perfume to decide what you like--this is the prototypical gourmand, and an excellent benchmark scent.
Fracas light, but a little greener. Beyond love smells thinner, somehow, and would be better in warm weather. If you love tuberose but need something a little less va-va-voom than Fracas, this would be wonderful for you. Much more wearable as a work fragrance, in my opinion. It does lack the buttery goodness of the Fracas drydown. Really an excellent fragrance, but I have a lifetime supply of Fracas and the two are far too similar to justify the purchase for me.
Lipstick -Revlon - Colorstay Soft and Smooth Lipcolor - Fabulous Fig 325
TwoBostons 1/17/2010 10:56:00 PM
I absolutely love this lipstick! I'd never tried a Colorstay l/s at all, but got sucked in by my drugstore having a 75% off clearance sale. Fabulous Fig is a plummy shade with a brown undertone, which works well with my coloring. Decently moisturizing, and lasted through almost an entire workday (and about four cups of coffee!). Glad I tried this one out. Once I realized what nice quality it was, I went back and grabbed a handful of other colors. Another great MUA recommendation!
Treatments (Eye) -Olay - Age Defying Revitalizing Eye Gel
TwoBostons 1/17/2010 10:42:00 PM
I've recommended this so many times, can't believe I haven't reviewed it! I used this for years, probably between the ages of 25-35, until I needed something a little sturdier. Absorbs well, makeup can be easily applied over it without the moisturizer causing your mascara to dissolve all over your face. No noticible fragrance, so none of that pesky irritation some eye creams cause. No milia, no breakouts. Runs between $13-15, and you can generally find it on sale at your drugstore. I view this eye gel as a preventative product, so don't expect retinol-quality repair! Truly a great drugstore product, especially for oily-skinned gals. This is probably not a product for women in my age range, unfortunately. If you're 40's-50's, I recommend Clarins Advanced Extra-Firming Eye Serum.
Fragrances -Unlisted Brand - Carthusia Aria di Capri
TwoBostons 1/17/2010 10:03:00 PM
A floral, aldehydic mess. Mimosa may well be present, but as a mimosa lover, I cannot charitably compare this to any other mimosa perfume I’ve smelled. Overtone of geranium, or zinnia perhaps. A giant mishmash of aldehydes, over the top florals, and powder. Given my opinion of this one, staying power was, of course, quite decent.
Opens like Estee Lauder Pleasures, then morphs halfway into Narcisco Rodriguez for Her. Never quite gets there, but that's fine by me as I don't care for NR. The floral overtones last about an hour, then a white musk/slightly sweaty skin scent takes over. Not body odor, don't get me wrong, but it smells a bit...blowsy. Like the co-worker everyone has who drinks too much in the evening and tries to cover it up the next day with an overly floral perfume. Got about 4 hours' wear out of it (didn't apply much, though, which could affect that). Suprising this comes from Guerlain. They can do better. The bottle is pretty.
Fragrances -Salvatore Ferragamo - F for Fascinating
TwoBostons 1/13/2010 1:23:00 AM
A decent fruity floral with a dash of patchouli. Opens with citrus/jasmine and dries down to a very light patch w/ a hint of jasmine. Nothing particularly distinctive about it, would be a good, inoffensive office scent if applied lightly. I find the bottle to be difficult to use, and almost broke the cap trying to figure out how to apply it. Wouldn't purchase, but would probably use as a summer back-up if I received it as a gift. Lasting power was about 5 hours on me. Available at discounters for around $16.
I really debated writing this, as I suppose there's an off chance I could have received a very, very old product. I checked it against testers, and they seemed to have the same issue, though. On the plus side: Nice, true black. Added a little volume, a little length. Didn't smudge at all. On the minus side: I had to apply 5 coats. No, that's not a typo. 5. I'm a 1-2 coat kind of gal unless it's for a big evening out, so this mascara is just too much of a pain to use. It was like applying a year-old L'Oreal Voluminous that you'd been using the whole time. Dry, hardly anything sticking to the lashes. The brush is a little too full at the tip as well--it was difficult to apply without getting it on my eyelids. Would not purchase again, unfortunately. This product is really the only dud I've purchased from Clarins. I gave it a two only because the packaging is pretty and because I gave Great Lash a 1. It is better than Great Lash, after all!
The scent of this is very reminiscent of J'Adore perfume. Would be great for layering! I thought it was a little over-the-top floral at first, but after my husband said he absolutely loved it, I figured it was worth a few more tries! It grew on me, but wouldn't be my first choice of scent. Moisturizes very well, and the effects last till the next day. It isn't as heavy as something like L'Occitane, but is about a half-step down from that. Absorbs well, no need to worry about getting spots on your clothing. Difficult to find at retail in my area, but can be ordered online.
Camphor and patchouli, with a side of potpourri. Started off medicinal, stayed that way for about 3 hours, when a teeny tiny bit of fruit began to peek out. Did I mention camphor? Smells like Campho-phenique, a cold sore treatment. What a disappointment.
This is a great foundation. Much higher quality than the price would lead one to believe. I bought it on impulse, as it had gotten a lot of love on the makeup board. Very glad I did. The finish isn't matte, but it doesn't sparkle either. I'm used to dewy/satin finishes, and this fits into that category. Coverage is medium, I'd say--keep in mind that my usual foundation is Bobbi Brown Skin, which is fairly sheer. Ladies who normally use a heavier coverage product may find this light. It applied easily with both fingers and a foundation brush. I set PR with L'Oreal Translucide loose powder and it stayed put for 12+ hours. My skin is normal, but I get a bit oily on my nose/forehead later in the day. Controlled shine quite well. The best part? NO BREAKOUTS. I'm quite sensitive to products, and can develop cysts within hours. Six days later, zero problems. Exfoliation is a must if you use this, as I'd skipped several days and a flaky patch was noticible when I applied this. Didn't settle into pores/fine lines. I'm Warm Sand/Beige in Bobbi Brown, and 004 Nude matched perfectly. A little better than the BB, actually, as the PhotoReady is a bit more neutral. I paid $13.50, but this was BOGOF at the time, so I got two. Can't really get a foundation for $7, let alone a good one! I would definitely repurchase, and have been talking it up to several ladies at work.