This is a great masque. In the winter I use a little bit as a conditioner, and in the other seasons I use it once a week, leaving it in 30 minutes. It really increases shine, detangles, and moisturizes, although it can be a little heavy. However, it is no match for the Kerastase Reflection Chroma Reflect masque, which is all that and is lighter weight! The price for the Oleo masque is really high, but you only need a little bit so I find it lasts months.
I like the Shu just fine and it really does work well, especially when you follow the directions and get the hang of curling your eyelashes in tiny little crimps to give you a curl, instead of just clamping down once. However what really bugs me about the Shu is that their marketing. They don't sell replacement pads. The curler comes with two pads, and they tell you that after you've used those you should throw it away and buy a new one. WHAT?! Either they are producing a product that is such crap that it breaks and you have to throw it away, or that's just a way of getting you to spend more money. Luckily the Shiseido pads fit the Shu. Personally, the Shiseido fits my "flat" eyes a little better, but I use the Shu interchangably.
This is an absolute HG! When you use it properly, you get a really graceful, natural curl that holds all day. The shape of the Shiseido curler really fits my "flat" eyes better than the Shu Uemura, and it gets all the little lashes in the corners. All of the curlers with silicon (not rubber) curved pads will give you a curl, not an L-shaped crimp like the cheap curler do. If you just crimp once, you'll end up with a crimp, so be sure to follow the instructions and crimp for a fraction of a second as you move though the entire length of your lashes. The curler lasts forever, so the price really pays itself out and you can get replacement pads from Shiseido.
Misc Beauty Tools -Sephora - Heated eyelash curler
bettybrown 2/11/2005 5:07:00 AM
I really wanted this to work for me but it does not. It's kind of fun, and it does curl your lashes for about 3 minutes, but after that, they straighten out again. Properly using the Shu Uemura or Shiseido old-fashioned style eyelash curlers will also give you a graceful curl that actually holds. Save your money on this one! It seems like a gimic to me. Not to say that it's more than a little creepy to hold heated things up to your eye.
Moisturizers -Clean & Clear - Oil-Free Dual Action Moisturizer
bettybrown 2/11/2005 5:03:00 AM
I have been using this product for 10 years and even as my skin ages I still think it's great. At 30 years old now, I use something heavier in winter for my oily/combination skin, but in all three other seasons, this is my HG. It really keeps your skin fresh and hydrated whilst keeping it matte and breakout-free. My little gripe is the packaging, as I preferred the old tube. The pump is hard to travel with. My HUGE gripe is the fact that this seems to have been phased out where I live (Germany). WHY?! PLEASE bring it back! I stock up in the US when I'm at home. The ingrediants are: Water, Dicaprylyl Ether, Glycerin, Dimethicone, Neopentyl Glycol Diethylhexanoate, Neopentyl Glycol Diisostearate, Aluminum Sarch Octenylsuccinate, Methyl Gluceth-20, Dicetyl Phosphate, Ceteth-10 Phosphate, Cetearyl Alochol. Menthyl Lactate, Steareth-20, Steareth-2, Fragrance, Xanthan Gum, Lecithin, Disodium EDTA, Sodium Hydroxide, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, BHT. The active ingrediant is Salicyclic Acid 0.5%.
Moisturizers -St. Ives - Collagen-Elastin Essential Moisturizer
bettybrown 2/11/2005 4:54:00 AM
This is a great product, especially given the price of $3! I was really surprised by how good this is, given that there's a lot of mineral oil in it. I have been using it on my oily/combination skin at nights and recently during the day as well for about 3 months now, and it really does look well-hydrated. It sinks right in and is a nice break from the amount of products on the market which are full of silicones that sit your face, inhibit moisturizing, and "treat" wrinkles by only filling them in and hiding them. The only down side is that as soon as the weather warms up a little and I use it during the day, it does tend to break me out a little. So this is definately a winter-time, night-time product for me. But for that price, anyone can afford to try this one out. The ingrediants are: Water Mineral Oil, Propylene Glycol, Clyeryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Stearic Acid, Soluble Collagen, Hydrolized Elastin, Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Pil, Tocopheryl Acetate, Sambucus Nigra Flower Extract, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Extract, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Extract, Primula Veris Extract, Ascorbic Acid, iola Tricolor Extract, Cetyl Alcohol, Carbomer, Dimethicone, Triethanolamine, Terrasodium EDTA, Methylparaben, Ethylparaben, Pehoxyethanol, Frangrance, Red 33, Red 4, Blue 1, Yellow 5. UPDATE NOV 2005: Winter's back and I have started using this again. This is such a better moisturizer than Elizabeth Arden or Clinique! I can't believe how good this is for the price. I use it at night and wake up with fresh, hydrated, happy skin.
I love Vixen and have been using it since it came out. It is such a good reminder of the 1990s for me when all these Chanel Vamp look-alike colors came out! : ) That said, it has very good staying power and goes on smoothly. It looks great on your toes in particular and with my yellowy-golden skin tone, it really makes my skin glow, even when I am not tan.
Treatments -L'Oreal - Dermo-Expertise ReFinish Micro-Dermabrasion
bettybrown 2/11/2005 4:40:00 AM
I love this product! It is definately HG for me. I am already on my second set. I actually only use the scrub, because I think the lotion is absolutely meh. I use the scrub 2-3x a week and my skin has *definately* improved in texture. It is smoother, finer and the color is much more even. I usually get redness and flaking in the winter, and I haven't had any of that since I started using this. My pores really do seem smaller. When I do have a zit, it seems to really help clear it up faster although I don't concentrate on rubbing it on or anything. The thing this product hasn't done however, is help blackheads or discolerations. But all in all, I would really recommend this product! If you have sensitive skin, you might want to try rinsing it off before the 2 minutes that L'Oreal recommends.
Moisturizers -Elizabeth Arden - Good Night's Sleep
bettybrown 2/11/2005 4:32:00 AM
This is a HG for me, especially during the cold, dry winter in Germany. I actually have oily skin, but once in a while it feels tight and dry. I put this on for one night and my skin is absolutely fresh and glowing in the morning. In the winter I use it every night, and an oil-control hydrator during the day and it works wonders to keep redness and flakes away! The scent is wonderful and I really like the pot it comes it. It really feels like a luxury cream. I highly recommend this!
Moisturizers -Estee Lauder - Clear Difference Oil-Control Hydrator
bettybrown 2/11/2005 4:29:00 AM
I have been using this on and off for 8 years, and like the reviewer below noted, I also think they've changed the formula because it does seem more drying. As I am now 30 and my oily skin is becoming combination, I would probably do better with the old version now! That said, this is a fantastic product which keeps your skin fresh and really does "re-program" your skin to produce less oil. I use it now on my t-zone only, but it really does inhibit zits and blackheads. When you do get one, however, it won't do much to get rid of it. The scent is really fresh. The ingrediants are: Water purified, Cyclomethicone, Ceteth-20, Dimethicone, Polyacrylamide, Butylene Glycol, Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract, Laminaria Saccharina Extract, Cholesterol, Linoleic Acid, Tocopheryl Acetate, Glycyrrhetinic Acid, Centella Asiatica (Hydrocotyl) Extract, Sodium Lyaluronate, Caffeine, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Silica, C13-14 Isoparaffin, Quaternium-22, Fragrance, Laureth-7, Benzalkonium Chloride, Disodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben.
I really like this. It is not a strong scent, which other reviewers have noted, but I like the woodsy, tea-like scent with a hint of mint that it leaves behind. When you've just sprayed it on, the mint is very strong - it doesn't stay that way, but I think mint is hard to work with. It's a great scent for work or going to the theater, when you want to wear perfume but don't want to irritate people around you.
Styling Products -Sebastian - Body Double ThickSpray Light
bettybrown 2/11/2005 4:19:00 AM
Meh. This product is the same as any other volumizing spray, and the bad news is that it's full of alcohol. I used it on the roots of my fine (but lots of it), straight, bra strap length hair and it was just...okay. I don't know how else to describe it. The ingrediants are: Alcohol denat, Waer, VP/VA Copolymer, Octycacrylamide/Acrylates/Butylaminoethyl, Methacrylate Copolymer, Panthenol, PEG-75 Lanolin, Hydrolized Soy Protein, Cyclopentasiloxane, Laurtrimonium Chloride, Tocopherol, Aminomethyl Propanol, Phenoxyethanol, Potassiumsorbate, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Ethylparaben, Butylparaben, Isobutylparaben, Fragrance.
Conditioner -Sebastian - Body Double Thick-In Conditioner
bettybrown 2/11/2005 4:14:00 AM
I had to take a lippie off because I think the price is insane (€20!) but other than that, this conditioner is pretty good. I think it'd be better for summer when you don't need as much moisture. It does give you body, but for me that means my natural wave and wiry hairs show through, so I *have* to follow with a glossing serum. The saving grace of this product, are the almost complete lack of -cones, so you know that it's not coating your hair and masking the actual results. Even though I add a shine serum with -cones afterwards anyways, I like being able to decide which -cones I but in my hair, so I can choose a serum which doesn't build up much. Also, the smell is fantastic, kind of fruity and succulent. FYI I have straight, fine (but lots of it) bra strap length hair. The ingrediants are: Water, Cetearyl Alcohol, Panthenol, Glycerin, Stearalkonium Chloride, Hydrolized Wheat Protein, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Amodimmethicone, Polyquaternium-10, Cetrimonium Chloride, cyclomethicone, Trideceth-12, Alcohol Denat., Hydroxyethylcellulose, Isopropyl Alchohol, Potassium Sorbate, Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben, Ethylparaben, Butylparaben, Propylparaben, Isobutylparaben, Fragrance.
This is a great detoxifier. I am already on my second bottle. It smells great, like citrusy and woody at the same time, and really detoxifies without stripping your hair. I can actually still run my fingers through my hair after shampooing with this and before conditioning. Also, for those with sensitive scalps, this does not irritate at all and doesn't dry it out. I use this once a week, followed by a deep conditioning (Kerastase). I don't think that a lot of the Aveda products are good enough to warrant the price tag, but this one is. The ingrediants are: Aqueous Extracts: Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Salvia Officinalus (Sage) Leaf Extract, Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate, Disodium Laureth Sulfosuccinate, Lauramidopropyl Betaine, Babassuamidopropyl Betaine, Sodium Gluconate, Erythorbic Acid, Panthenol, Fragrance, Dimethicone Copolyol Laurate, Osostearamidopropyl Morpholine Lactate, Cocamidopropyl PG-Dimonium Chloride Phosphate, PEG-6 Cocamide, Polyquaternium-10, Sodium Chloride, Sodium Benzoate, Potassium Sorbate, Tetrasodium EDTA, Methylchloroisonthiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone.
Styling Products -Paul Mitchell - Super Skinny Serum
bettybrown 2/11/2005 3:53:00 AM
Meh. This is a so-so shine product which smells great. I have fine (but lots of it), straight, bra-strap-length hair. I have tried this product alone and with the poo and condit, but it's really just ok, not great. It does not begin to compare to L'Oreal's Smooth Intense anti-frizz taming serum! Super Skinny does what you expect from a glossing serum, but it doesn't soften hair as well like L'Oreal does. The ingrediants are: Cyclomethicone, Dimethiconol. Trimethylsiloxyamodimethicone, C11-15 Pareth-7, C12-16 Pareth-9, Trideceth-12, Glycerin, Amodimethicone, Cetrimonium Chloride, Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate, Fragrance, Osopropylparaben, Isobutylparaben, Butylparaben.