Mascara -Cover Girl - Lash Blast Luxe Black Royale
cavewoman 2/10/2009 8:36:00 AM
Dear Cover Girl, did you forget to put the sparkles in this mascara? Of course I ran to find it, at Walmart, because of all the advertising and the promise of sparkly lashes. I bought the Black Royale hoping for a dark navy that would give me some good lashes with the va-va-voom sparkle effect. It didn't take me more than a second or two to realize there were no sparkles in this mascara. It does have a slight metallic effect. The Black Royale is too light for my eyelashes. This formula clumped really badly and even stroke after stroke it would not apply evenly. It skipped some areas and over-applied in others. I could barely see any effect at all, not much length, no darkening, and I had to use a separate comb to get rid of the clumps. The formula is heavy and there's no lift at all, in fact, it made my lashes droop downward. What's really interesting is that when I went to remove it, I had to use several cotton pads soaked in my remover (I was using Gee That Was Quick from Benefit) -- it just kept coming off! How odd, I kept removing mascara that I could barely see on my lashes! Into the trash this one goes. If I want blue, I'll stick with YSL Faux Cils or Benefit Bad Gal Blue.
I had high hopes for this product and I thought the ads with Ellen DeGeneris were really attractive photos. I stood in front of the display at CVS for twenty minutes, trying to figure out which shade would be best for me (NW20) and I settled on Classic Ivory 210 which turned out to be way way too pale for me. The next darker shade, Natura Ivory, looked too yellowy to me, and Creamy Natural 220 was way too pink. The sunscreen in this product is titanium dioxide, and a heavy dose of it. That ingredient tends to counteract any moisturizing properties or ingredients, it turns super dry on my skin. Unfortunately you can't see the ingredient list unless you peel off the over-label on the back. I applied the foundation with my clean beautyblender because I use it for all of my foundations. The Simply Ageless seemed creamy enough in the compact (which was almost impossible to open, I had to wrap rubber bands around it to get it to unscrew!) but it was hard to blend out, and gripped really fast on my skin. Within seconds I could see it was turning matte on me and accenting every pore and line on my face. I re-tried it with a good primer underneath, my Borghese Prima Viso, and still it was too matte for me, even the primer did not help. I still saw pores and lines. I'm returning this to CVS. A tester unit would have helped me to decide in-store that this product would not suit me. I am pretty sure that I'm the target consumer for this product in terms of my age and skin type, and because of that and in as much fairness as I can judge, I have to say, it's a failure.
I did not mind that this foundation wasn't oil-free, as a matter of fact, that is what I was looking for. I can't do oil-free foundations any more since my skin has turned very dry. The foundation comes in only six shades, and as an NW20, I chose the second shade. I like the glass bottle and I like the pump. It was easy to dispense just the amount of foundation that I wanted. I applied it with the beautyblender sponge the first time I used it, and the second time, just with my fingers. The first time I used it, I had a few little red bumps, not a real breakout, and I never break out, but I noticed and was just wondering if I had not washed my bb sponge that week. I didn't use the foundation again for a few weeks, and this time I applied it with fingers. It really has a beautiful luminous finish, glowing but not wet or dewy, not greasy at all, smoothes on evenly and feels comfortable on my dry skin. But the following day, breakouts! Just be warned if you try this foundation. I love the finish, it lasted all day, did not sink into lines or creases, didn't dry out, it was so close to being perfect! I won't repurchase.
Don't look for much tint in this new tinted moisturizer by L'Oreal. It's more of a pearly glowy type product and it isn't a skin-shade, it has a hint of orange color to it when it is applied onto the skin. I used it under one of my foundations, and it did seem to liven up my complexion a bit, but it also changed the color of my foundation and made my face appear a bit darker than it really is. I tried just wearing the moisturizer on its own as a tinted moisturizer, but it didn't look ver pretty at all. The product itself is super-dewy and shiny. It stays a bit sticky on the skin, and the worst part is that it broke me out, and I never break out. I could not believe how badly this stuff clogged my pores, with big, visible dark dots. Really horrible! The bottle itself is a nice pump which works well to dispense just the amount you want, and it is opaque, but if you hold it up to a lightbulb, you can see how much remains. Even with my dry skin, this product did not help. The product never seemed to sink in or help the dryness, and it gave my skin that very weird orangey tint, it broke me out and gave me blackheads, so into the trash it goes.
This could quite possibly be the worst lipgloss I have ever tried. I bought the color Bloom, a pretty light pink shade with shimmer, and when I got home I noticed that this particular L'Oreal product does not come sealed with a shrink-overwrap. So it's not even possible to know if someone has swatched it. I pulled the wand out and was very disappointed to see that slanted doe-foot applicator. It is the reason I did not like the new Lancome glosses that have that same applicator. It took me three or four 'dips' into the gloss to get enough of this Infallible to cover my lips! Within minutes it felt so uncomfortably sticky that I wanted to remove it. I left it on, though, to see if it would really last the 6 hours it promises. I could barely stand the sticky feel, as if my lips were sticking together! A quick check in the mirror showed it migrating to the corners of my lips and caking there. I dabbed with a tissue and eww, the tissue was sticking to my lips! Needless to say, I returned the gloss to the drugstore where I had purchased it.
I was eager to try the newest of the Lolita Lempicka scents, Fleur De Corail, because I love all of the other scents in this line, and also because the perfumer for this fragrance is Maurice Roucel. I've worn many of his fragrances and I appreciate his talent and the complexity of his perfumes, including Musc Ravageur, Bond Broadway Nite, 24 Faubourg, and L'Instant De Guerlain. Sephora shows these notes for Fleur De Corail: grapefruit, bergamot, frangipani, vanilla orchid, driftwood, musk, and amber. Of course there's more to Fleur De Corail than just these seven notes, but after spraying, waiting, sniffing, and waiting some more, what I sense in this fragrance is a sweet and creamy tropical floral with a quick and hard slam of woodsy notes. I barely got to enjoy the florals when the driftwood appeared. To me the driftwood is a distinct cedar-like note, and I've come to learn that I don't like cedar at all. I didn't detect the musk in the base of this scent. Lasting power is amazing, which would be a plus if I liked the scent. The bottle is a derivation of the beautiful L De Lolita bottle, like a piece of beach glass smoothed by the water and sand. Fans of woodsy and tropical floral scents will probably love this new perfume.
Treatments -Estee Lauder - Nutritious Vita-Mineral Radiance Serum
cavewoman 8/21/2008 8:55:00 AM
This serum is part of a group of new skincare products by Estee Lauder, which are supposed to be for all skin types, and containing pomegranate plus tons of plant extracts, vitamins and minerals, etc etc. To me it is just a very good basic serum, much more lightweight than most serums I have tried. One pump onto the back of my hand showed that it is thinner than most serums, very watery, with a pleasant faint fruity scent. On the face, it spreads quickly and dries almost instantly. The box states that it "infuses skin's natural glow with a look that's vibrant, energized, simply amazing." I didn't get much of a glow with this, it dries invisibly and had no effect on the radiance of my skin. I'm not sure what 'energized' means in terms of skin health or appearance, but at least it felt nice! When it dries on the skin there is absolutely no stickiness at all, it feels great but had no tightening effect. It has no pore or line smoothing properties at all. It's not "amazing" but it is a very good superlight serum to use under moisturizer. I do think that it helped to boost the effect of the moisturizer I used over it, which is what serums are usually recommended for. Although I found this to be a wonderful light product to use in the Summer, I don't think I would buy it again. Perfectionist CP+ (the newest version, the serum) is far far better in terms of visible and lasting results. The ingredient list for this Nutritious serum is huge. With two pairs of reading glasses on, I will attempt to type it here, it's very hard to read the tiny list on the box, black letters printed on red. Here are the ingredients: Water, butylene glycol, methylgluceth-20, peg 75, glycereth-26, peg-8 dimethicone, oryza sativa (rice) bran extract, hydrolized soy protein, saccarromyces/zinc ferment extract, hydrolyzed yeast protein, passiflora alata (passionfruit) fruit extract, saccharomyces ferment lysate filtrate, sigesbeckia orientalis (St. Paul's Wort) extract, camellia sinensis (green tea) leaf extract, punical granattum (pomegranate) seed oil, saccharomyces/magnesium ferment extract, punica granatum (pomegranate) fruit juice, saccharomyces lysate extract, hydrolized corn protein, sodium hyaluronate, centella asiatica (hydrocotyl) extract, saccharomyces/calcium ferment extract, creatine, hydrolyzed wheat protein, dimethicone, prunus mume fruit extract, calluna vulgaris (heather) extract, pyrus malus (apple) fruit extract, oleth-3 phosphate, cyclopentasiloane, oleth-3, ethylhexylglycerin, dipropylene glycol, hydrogenated polyisobutene, oleth-5, tocopherylacetate, sucrose, caffeine, polysilicone-11, glycerin, pantethine, acetyl carnitine hcl, acetyl glucosamine, phytantriol, ppg-6 decyltetradeceth-30, fragrance (parfum), peg/ppg-20/20 dimethicone, adenosine phosphate, cyclodextrin, potassium carbomer, carbomer, ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate, ethylbisiminomethylguaiacol manganese chloride, xhanthan gum, bht, disodium edta, phenoxyethanol, red33(CI 17200), yellow 5 (CI 19140),
Moisturizers -Estee Lauder - Nutritious Vita Mineral Moisture Lotion
cavewoman 8/21/2008 8:20:00 AM
This product is part of a new group of skincare that is, for the time being, exclusive to Nordstrom. It contains an antioxidant ingredient from pomegranate. This is a very lightweight moisturizer, and the box states that it is for all skin types. It feels weightless on the skin and it dries quickly so you can go ahead and put on your foundation over top. It does not contain any sunscreen. It isn't oil-free, but it still just wasn't enough moisture for me. I do not mind fragranced products, but the fragrance in this one is very green, not quite herbal, but not very pleasant to me to have on my face. It definitely leaves a glow on the face, even though it dries smoothly. It's just an odd product, nowhere near as effective as some of the other Lauder skincare items that I use and love already. People who like lightweight moisturizers may not want the oils, but people with dry skin might not find this moisturizing enough, even with the oils. One thing to note here is that the silicone ingredient is almost at the bottom of the list, so people who cannot use silicones might find this a good option. Here are the ingredients: Water, triethylhexanoin, simmondsia chinensis (jojoba) seed oil, squalane, glycerin, pentylene glycol, stearic acid, batyl alcohol, oruza sativa (rice) bran extract cucumis melo (melon) fruit extract, olea europaea (olive) fruit extract, caffeine, polygonum cuspidatum root extract, punica granatum (pomegranate) fruit juice, creatine, saccahromyces ferment lysate filtrate, cholestrol/potassium sulfate, punica granatum (pomegranate) seed oil, persea gratissima (avocado) oil, saccharomyces lysate extract, lactobacillus ferment, sodium hyaluronate, garcinia indica (kokum) seed butter, caprylic/capric triglyceride, hydrogenated lecithin, lecithin, trehalose, phytantriol, propylene glycol dicaprylate, peg100 stearate, butylene glycol, acrylates/c10-30 alkyl acrylate crosspolymer, dimethicone, sodium chondrootin sulfate, fragrance, xanthan gum, phenoxyethanol, sodium dehydroacetate.
Fragrances -Bond No.9 - Andy Warhol Lexington Avenue
cavewoman 8/16/2008 6:52:00 PM
It's as if the two Bond No. 9 greats, Chinatown and Andy Warhol Silver Factory, have merged to create something even greater than themselves. Andy Warhol Lexington Avenue is a masterpiece scent that has me almost unable to type because "I can't stop smelling my wrists!" -- perfume lovers know what I mean. Beginning at the end is what this scent seems to do. My initial reaction was wow, how did they get the sandalwood on the top and not in the base? It's the first note that I smelled when I sprayed it on my wrist. Something very gourmand-sweet -- possibly the creme brulee notes, start combining with the sandalwood to create depth in the top where usually the more fleeting notes sit. The peony and the patchouli give a hint of Chinatown, and the the iris and the woods remind me of Silver Factory. In its mid-stages, the florals and spices emerge and they soften the initial sweets and woods and blend into them seamlessly. Just when you want more of the woods, they re-appear. I can see this scent easily worn by both men and women, although the adorable black signature star Bond bottle, adorned with Warhol's shoe drawings, is all-girl. The perfumer for Lexington Avenue is Claude Dir, and the notes given are blue cypress, fennel, cardamom, pink peony, iris, creme brulee, pimento berry, patchouli, and sandalwood. It's a brilliant scent and another fabulous tribute to Andy Warhol, himself a perfume lover. I know he'd approve!
This new High Definition primer is more like a nice smoothing serum in my opinion, and not too much like the primers that are thicker, and full of silicones that fill in lines, wrinkles, and pores. It feels comfortable on the skin and it did really help to keep the MUFE Hi Def foundation on all day, but after applying my foundation over this primer, I did notice that I wasn't too happy about the appearance of my pores. So, it's good for helping to keep foundation in place, and to prevent uneven wear during the day, but it's not so great if you need more pore and wrinkle correction. I would say that people with oily skin would like it and may not even need anything under it, because it does feel like part-treatment and part-primer. The Neutral shade looks whitish in the bottle, but goes on clear. There are several other shades for brightening and color correcting, too. It's a fine product but not as primer-ish as I wanted it to be.
Foundations -Make Up For Ever - HD High Definition Foundation
cavewoman 8/6/2008 2:57:00 PM
This is a beautiful foundation that, if you get the right shade, will absolutely look invisible on the face. I got a sample and from that, I made a guess as to my correct shade, which turned out to be 118. For reference I am NW20. Neither totally matte on me nor dewy, it is a beautiful satiny finish that goes edge toward a bit matte, but not dry looking in the least. It's easy to blend out in small areas at a time. I used the beautyblender sponge and it was less than a minute to a flawless face. It did tend to melt off a bit in the heat and humidity on me. This product is oil-free, so I moisturized underneath it and then I used the new MUFE Hi Def primer in the 0 color which is the clear one. After half a day, I could see flakey areas around my nose and cheeks, and that's probably just due to the fact that oil-free does tend to make my face dry out toward the end of the day. I had hopes that this foundation would be good for hot Summer wear when I don't need something as emollient as the La Mer or the Vitalumiere, but it didn't work for me. It will be perfect for people with oily skin who don't want their foundation to be super matte. I give it a very high rating even though it is not my best formula, just because this looks so beautiful on the skin. I gave it a 3 for packaging because the pump doesn't allow for dispensing smallish amounts, the pump on the primer is much better. MUFE has made this foundation for wear in front of a camera. I usually stand behind the camera, I haven't tried it in photos yet.
Treatments -Estee Lauder - Perfectionist CP+ Wrinkle Lifting Serum
cavewoman 7/29/2008 7:21:00 AM
My love affair with the former version of Perfectionist CP+ lasted for years. It is truly the only treatment product that I have ever used that gave me exactly what it promised. I had run out, and was at the Lauder counter to get more, and I saw the new purple bottle sitting on the counter. My SA told me that this was the newest version. She said it was even better, and I could not even figure out how that could be, but I bought it. At first as I started to use it, I was pleased with the way it felt on my skin, it feels like it is full of silicones. It definitely leaves a film on the skin and filled in pores and lines, but somehow it felt thicker on my face than the older version of CP+. I used the new version for a few weeks. I noticed a slight lightening effect on some spots on my face, but when using foundation over top of this new version, it seemed to make my foundation cake and clump and go on unevenly. I prefer the original CP+ and fortunately it is still sold at the CCO Lauder Outlets.
Mascara -Christian Dior - Diorshow Iconic High Definition Lash Curler Mascara
cavewoman 7/26/2008 4:24:00 PM
I bought this mascara before my Givenchy arrived from the Sephora website, and I had not had a chance to try it until today (since I've been wearing the Givenchy Phenomen'eyes every day since it arrived!) but I wanted to give the new Diorshow Iconic a fair try. To my surprise it's excellent! Here is another great new mascara that gives fast lashes! It does exactly what the name says. I got a great lift and curl from this mascara, it lengthens to the extent that my lashes are brushing up against my eyeglass lenses! And it separates perfectly without needing a comb after application. Don't expect thickness or volume from this one, but if you want that too, layer a volumizing mascara over top of this one. The brush is one of the newer style plastic bristle applicators but it has the teeth very close together and it has a twist to the lines of bristles. The bristles are shorter than some of the newer ones I've tried, like Colossal and LashBlast. I think that gave me better coating and control. My lashes stayed curled all day, without even using a curler! No flaking at all, no smudging, and easy to remove (I used Gee That Was Quick by Benefit.) A superb lengthening and lifting mascara that takes very little time to use, no clumping, and dries quickly. This is a slightly wetter formula than the original Diorshow. I would definitely buy it again.
I ordered this new Givenchy Phenomen'eyes mascara on the day it showed up on the Sephora website. I could not wait to try this weird little prickly ball applicator, which looks in the photos like some weird Medieval torture device. I buy any and all new mascaras, constantly searching for a HG that can give me lashes. So far, Hypnose and DiorShow were my best bets. My lashes are thin, short, sparse, pale, and they are stick straight, as a matter of fact they stick straight downwards, and won't hold a curl very long at all. Most of the time it takes me about five to ten minutes to get a good application to even have my lashes show. So any mascara gets a good test on my particular lashes. The box and the little folder inside don't give any real application instructions, so I just aimed that little ball at my lashes (no primer, no pre-curling) and started to apply. Almost immediately, I saw lashes! This mascara has a nice creamy formula, the little prickly ball separates each lash without any clumping whatsoever and no need to comb through afterwards. I noticed a nice lift and curl that I have never gotten with any other mascara, and the black stays glossy even after it dries. I was able to get to the inner and outer corners with ease, and in less than a minute I had a good fringe that actually looked like I had applied false eyelashes! The curl effect lasted until I removed the mascara, too! There was absolutely no flaking or smudging at all, and it was easy to remove with Gee That Was Quick eyemakeup remover by BeneFit. I got caught in the rain and it still didn't budge. Just to show you how great this mascara is, I went directly to my makeup storage drawer and tossed over a dozen mascaras in varying stages of use. And the ones that I hadn't opened yet, they're on my swap list. I'm stocking up. The entire name of this product is Phenomen'eyes High-Precision Panoramic Mascara Perfectly Curled & Separated Lashes. That's what I got, plus beautiful length and nice volume -- as much as I've ever gotten with a mascara that did not need combing or fussing after application. HG.
I am adding this new product to Product Reviews as a tinted moisturizer, because that's what it really is to me, and that is why I bought it. There are very few good tinted moisturizers for truly dry skin at the drugstores ,and even though this Olay is sold on the same racks as the rest of the Olay skincare, it is definitely a must-try for someone looking for a TM at the drugstore. The container reads "for most skin tones" and this product only comes in the one shade. It comes in a very short bottle, but the contents are 1.7oz, a nice size with a good pump that allows dispensing just as much as needed, so there's no waste. The UV ingredients are 4% octisalate, 2% avobenzone, 1% octocrylene, and 1% ensulizole. This product gives the skin a big drink of moisture, leaves a pretty, fresh glow, and gives a bit of coverage in a totally neutral color. I am about an NW20, and if you are any lighter than that, this will be too dark for you. The rest of the ingredients are: water, glycerin, niacinamide (vitamin B3) dimethicone, titanium dioxide (I guess not enough to be part of the sunscreen listing) isopropyl palmitate, aluminum starch octenysuccinate, behenyl alcohol, sodium ascorbyl phosphate (vitamin C) panthenol (pro-vitamin B5) tocopheryl acetate (vitamin E) camellia sinensis leaf extract, zinc oxide, stearyl alcohol, sorbitan stearate, poyacrylamide, polyethylene, triethanolamine, cetyl alcohol, benzyl alcohol, dimethiconol, peg_100 stearate, c 13-14 isoparaffin, laureth-7, cetearyl glucoside, cetearyl alcohol, ammonium polyacrylate, stearic acid, methylparaben, propylparaben, ethylparaben, fragrance, triethoxycaprylylsilane, iron oxides. This will be a great everyday moisturizer for me on days when I do not need to be putting on a foundation and powder. It felt comfortable without being greasy. For the record, I have dry skin, so this probably would not please someone who is oily. I'd buy again! Nice job, Olay, filling an area that crosses over between treatment and foundation! They have also introduced a similar product in their Definity line that is now being offered in three shades, and L'Oreal has now introduced a radiance perfector in their Age Perfect line, and I'll review these soon. So far the Total Effects is the winner.