There aren't many polishes out there like this one. This is limited edition, I believe, for Halloween 2011.
It's Alive is a golden olive glitter suspended in a lovely army green jelly. The glitter is different sizes so it has an interesting textured look. I think it's supposed to suggest zombies or monsters or something like that, but it's actually a beautiful color with striking depth. The jelly is slightly darker than the glitter, so the glitter really pops against it.
Because the base is tinted the polish doesn't need underwear--it's opaque in two coats. (I went for three; that's just how I roll.) I have no complaints about the formula; application was stellar and it dried fairly quickly. Very easy to work with and to clean up.
The nature of a glitter polish is to be chunky and textured, and IA is no exception. Definitely needs a coat or two of Gelous over the top to get it smooth and shiny, but I don't care.
It's definitely a busy polish, and definitely not a good work choice for a typical office. However, I consider it a marvelous choice for ANYWHERE else and that is exactly where I intend to wear it this weekend.
First the good. This color is fantastic! A beautiful shimmery golden olive green with unexpected tiny sparkles of all different colors that twinkle very subtly in the correct lighting. I didn't see anything else quite like it in the other drugstore lines. So gorgeous.
Now the not so good. I had to layer this over a dark brown to get it to opacity in two coats (three, counting the brown). There was no way it was going to be anything but baldly sheer ad streaky otherwise. I wouldn't call it a layering polish, just something that requires dark underwear. I guess that isn't so bad, just another step that annoys me to have to take. Be sheer if you want to, but don't STREAK for goodness' sake.
The brush is just fail. Hate it. My nails are narrow at the base and that brush is just too wide. Much cleanup ensued.
The color saved it from the giveaway pile. It is just so pretty I had to make it work. But I just don't appreciate having to work so hard for a mani with an eight-dollar polish. Would hesitate before selecting another Borghese polish.
Another winner from the DS collection. Same smooth, lovely application as the other holo DS polishes in my collection. Opaque in 2 coats and super easy to work with and clean up. Really lovely stuff.
The color is a red-based winey plum. Maybe...red-violet from my 1972 box of Crayolas. The aforementioned holo particles provide a lot of depth and dimension without being glittery or chunky. The holo itself is weak, not super rainbow, kind of a personal party on your nails, not something people can necessarily see from an appropriate personal-space distance, therefore I totally got away with it at work.
This is one of the few purples that look well against my yellow based skin tone.
I don't usually think of nail polishes in HG terms--I'm much too fickle to settle on one favorite--but I could think of DS Classic as a HG nude. It has everything I wanted in a nude. Appropriate for the (non-law firm, probably) office, does not fight with my skin tone, chock full of subtle yet somehow extravagant bling.
Base color is like a lightened mocha nude, and the holo "glitterettes" are like BAM GORGEOUS, reflecting every rainbow color in both sunlight and office fluorescents.
application was stellar, smooth and easy to work with. Opaque in 2 coats, at least visually. Dried shiny and smooth, and quickly.
This is probably the one polish I would ever want a backup bottle of. Just so flipping gorgeous I can barely stand it. Ethereal. Delicate. Fairy nails, for a grownup.
This polish has a lovely consistency--very easy to work with. Smooth application, shiny finish for a glitter, neither runny nor thick. Beautiful bottle color--a nice middle red-violet purple with flecks of blue, red, purple and fuchsia glitter. Or glass fleck. I can never tell that stuff apart. Revlon's brush is always easy for me to work with as well.
I gave it a 4 and not a 5 because (as I suspected) it was not, for me, a standalone polish. At 4 coats it just begins to approach opacity for me. This would have been all right with me if it weren't the type of polish where the brushstrokes show--heavier in spots, not as heavy in others. I don't have bald spots per se, but definitely "thinning" spots. It applied nicely, just tended to collect itself in places and not in others. Not my favorite look. On the other hand, it's perfect as a layering polish and I like it very much for that purpose.
The scent is really fun but very little-girly, like Kool-Aid. It's a pretty smell, but juvenile. I like it, but would be mindful of where I was going with it on (e.g. not to work).
Having said all that, this polish is very pretty and quite festive, and is a good celebratory addition to my NP wardrobe. I would repurchase in terms of going back in time and making the decision again based on my knowledge of the polish. In practical terms, though, probably not. It's a big bottle.
Shampoo -Suave - Professionals Almond & Shea Butter
edie4711 9/3/2011 9:30:00 PM
I waited a few weeks before reviewing this shampoo in case it was just a honeymoon phase. It's not. I am very surprised at how well this shampoo performed for me.
My hair: carefully color-treated, but otherwise undamaged; of medium texture and super-thick; about shoulder length. Naturally pretty voluminous with a slight wave to it. For the most part, I was blessed with pretty good hair. However, it tends to frizz, especially in the summer, and it can be oily/heavy if too moisturized, and flyaway if a product is too drying.
I have been using Kerastase Bain Satin I (my HG shampoo) for years but can no longer afford to do so. Even if I could, I just don't *want* to pay ~$37 for 8 oz of shampoo. Also, I was tired of having to order it, wait for it to arrive, etc. We had a good run, Bain Satin I and I, but quite honestly I was on the prowl to get me a little strange.
I tried a bunch of different shampoos. Nexxus Therappe, Redken All Soft, some blue stuff my hairstylist recommended, I forget what else. None of these were for me--too heavy, too stripping, too whatever. Not sure how I became aware of this new Suave--probably here on MUA--but for what was it, two bucks, I was all about trying it.
After several weeks of use it is obvious that this shampoo works for me. It is moisturizing without weighing my hair down, does not strip my color, and leaves my hair feeling silky-smooth with a nice shiny appearance.
I also enjoy using it. It has a nice slippery texture and I don't need to use a lot. The scent is faint and pleasant even through the next day. My pillow smells nice from it.
I bought the 55-gallon-drum-size bottle for like two dollars and something, as I mentioned. The only thing I don't like about it is that the bottle doesn't have a pump. It's a little irritating to have to tip up this huge bottle every day. But just a little. For the price and performance, I'll put up with a little logistical hassle, and maybe someday I'll find an empty pump bottle to decant it into.
Should mention that I have only used this in conjunction with the matching conditioner, which I will get around to reviewing at some point (also good stuff). All in all an excellent value. My new HG.
This polish is GLORIOUS.
I wanted a bright, clear red that didn't lean pink, or magenta, or burgundy--and I also didn't want orange. Just a strong, brilliant, no-pink-in-it-at-all red. A little shimmer, too, please--not a bunch of gold glitter trying to dress another burgundy wine up as a red, but a true red shimmer.
Well let me tell you what. This red is EXACTLY what I was looking for. It is a bangin' awesome glowing candy red that looks as though it's lit from within. It has a fine warm red shimmer that is absolutely luminous. My perfect, perfect red for my yellow-based skintone. So gorgeous. I can't stop staring at it.
But that's not all. The application was incredible. I could have left it at one coat, but I went crazy and did two. It was very workable--I had plenty of time to spread it around, the formula was self-leveling and thin but not cuticle-flooding, the pigment stayed suspended in the base. No baldness. No gritty look, even though it's shimmery. Just straight-up wonderful polish. It even dried in a reasonable amount of time and played nicely with Seche Vite top coat.
I have never seen a polish quite this color and never expected it to be such a smooth and gorgeous formula to boot. And it was like, what? two bucks? three bucks? at Sally's. I really don't care how much it was but WOW for an inexpensive polish this was a good performer in just every direction. Hell, it gives my $8-10 polishes a run for their money. Amazing, amazing, amazing. Try it.
Polishes -Sally Hansen - Xtreme Wear Time To Shine
edie4711 8/31/2011 1:28:00 PM
I am really pleased with this polish overall. It is part of my collection of polishes which are blingy/special but still wearable at work (not sure about finance or law, just a regular old office).
It is a warm silver foil finish; it could also be called metallic taupe. It is neutral, not really warm or cool. It was opaque for me in 3 coats and it went on smoothly and easily. Really easy to work with and no clumping, balding or bumpy surface. It neither highlights nor camouflages imperfections in the nail.
The color flatters me even though I am warm-toned. Really easy to use and to wear. I said I would repurchase, but I almost never use up polishes so I wouldn't really. I just meant if the clock was turned back and I was in front of the display again making up my mind, knowing what I know now, I would definitely buy it. Great value for the price.
Wow, no reviews for this one? I am pleased to be the first! I know this is discontinued or LE or whatever but it is still out there--I just got mine--so I feel it's worth reviewing.
I stalked this polish for a long time, looking at swatches I found floating around on the internets, trying to get a bead on the overall color. There were some swatches that suggested a warm coppery-peachy overall color, and some that looked bright pink, but when my bottle arrived I found it's actually more like a mauvey rose base. Totally was not expecting that based on my research. I never wear pinks--too warm-toned--but I was already invested so took the plunge.
HOMG it was gorgeous, even on yellow me. It was not exactly a rose on the nail, more like a ...a russet-rose. It is a deeper version of the color that I blush. From a distance, it looks like a work-appropriate warm mauve cream. However, the polish is loaded with very tiny silver and holo particles that walk the line between shimmer and glitter. There's no physical depth to the particles--they're so fine they don't take away from the smoothness--but the visual depth is stunning. In some indoor lighting, I can see silver particles and that's all. In other lighting I can see the gorgeous holo dimension. Outdoors, it's a fireworks display of warmth and holographic depth. It is so beautiful and glittery outside that I kept forgetting to go at green lights on my way to work--I was too wrapped up in admiring the polish to obey traffic lights. I believe I spent this whole past weekend admiring my nails.
With regard to quality, it was in my top 10 as soon as I laid on the first coat. Smooth, smooth, smooth application, wonderful consistency. Coats went on thinly and evenly, no pooling at the cuticles, no clumping up of the foily bits, no dragging. It also dried quickly to a smooth, hard, shiny finish. Opaque in two coats but I went for three for a little more depth.
I recommend this to everyone, but particularly to warm-toned girls who think they can't wear pinks. It is freakin' gorgeous. So excited to have DS Tapestry join my nail polish collection.
When I thought about how many lippies to give this one I thought about the fact that DS Glow is supposed to be a little bit special. Limited edition, designer series, all that. While I love the color and the glitz, and found the application/consistency/opacity to be above average, it just didn't strike me as all that special. Maybe I'm stingy, I don't know. Glow just didn't blow my hair back like I wanted it to.
Another reviewer mentioned rose gold. I agree--Glow leans that way. There are pink foil particles mingled in with the coppery/bronzy ones that do add a little depth to the overall color of the foil, which reads copper on me for the most part. If you want it to push more toward rose gold, I found that wearing it over gold-leaf underwear (like Orly Luxe) helps with that.
Application was good. Not the world's best, but good. I am super-picky about what constitutes "opaque" and with foils, a lot of times it's apparently opaque but then you start to notice areas that are a little bit bald, for lack of a better word. At least I notice them. I still had baldness in two coats, but when I went to three coats I started to feel like it looked, I don't know, encrusted. It doesn't have a lumpy surface, it's smooth to the touch, but it reminded me more of a glitter than a foil in the way that it reflected the light.
Removal is a breeze and it doesn't stain. It is a foil that acts like a glitter. For that I appreciate it. But even with the multiple colors of foil/glitter particles, I just didn't find this polish to have that dimensional depth I was after, like the others in this line. Still nice to have, though. I like it in my collection.
My nails are thin and flexible and no polish stays on more than a few days (it generally peels off in sheets--even Shellac), so I never judge polish products on staying power.
I like Gelous for the following reasons: it stays crystal clear, it seems to even out the surface of the nail, and it dries to a tough, shiny finish that is still flexible enough for my bendy nails. (If the polish is too stiff, it will crack where my nail bends.) I like how it's thick enough to give that smooth surface but not so thick that it's hard to work with.
Another thing I like is that it does not have the typical nail polish odor. I'm not sure why there's no smell but I appreciate that.
It dries quickly, as other reviewers have mentioned, and I appreciate that as well. Sometimes polishes that dry quickly are difficult for me to work with because they start drying as soon as they hit the nail, which seems to make it hard to smooth out. Gelous provides enough open time to successfully smooth the surface but I don't feel as though I'm sitting around for hours waiting for it to dry fully.
Edit: I have begun using Gelous as a 2nd base coat (never the base base coat, always something underneath it otherwise it doesn't want to stick as well) to prep my nails for color. It provides a very smooth layer that evens out my nails and helps the color polish glide on more easily. It is also a great glitter topper as it helps fill in the lumps and create the glasslike surface I need to survive a manicure. Lastly, I throw on a coat of this if I notice sheet marks, small dents, or any other minor irregularity in my dry manicure and it smooths it out and makes it fabulous again.
I use Alima satin matte foundation exclusively. For me, this brush is a wonderful thing, but you have to take that statement in context. I've been limping along with the terrible BE flawless application and kabuki brushes for years--they hurt my face, they shed relentlessly and copiously, they provide uneven coverage (at least in my inexpert hands). Awful brushes, but I just never got around to getting better ones. The Alima #25 feels incredibly soft on my sensitive, rosacean skin. It is well-made and feels like a high-quality brush. It also does not shed 20+ hairs per use as did both my BE brushes. (These two items are wonderful things to me and enough to get me over to the computer to review. Like an underground prisoner coming up into the light for the first time, I'm so impressed with the sunlight and the grass that I'm not ready to notice that the campground may not have a bathroom or covered parking.) Lastly, I get excellent coverage with this brush. Another reviewer commented that the Alima foundations need to be lightly brushed on as opposed to buffed in, and after using this brush I believe that is the case. The brush doesn't have the strength to drive the makeup into the skin, but it does provide smooth, even coverage that, on me, is not flaky or "there." With this brush the Alima mmu melts into my skin beautifully. I should mention that I do wear a relatively shiny and moisturizing sunscreen underneath it so that may be why I don't experience the flakies that some others have found with this brush. It seems to wash well too; I'm extremely careful with my brushes so that may be why I haven't experienced the bristles pulling out of shape after washing. In short, I love this brush and don't feel the need to continue looking. I'm still not sure if I came here this morning to love on my new Alima brush or hate on my old BE brushes, but I am so happy to be out in the sunlight with my #25. Well worth the money, IMO.
I did not experience the fantastic results that others have with Cassia. I am tentatively blaming the poor results on the fact that my hair is colored (permanent/L'Oreal Excellence). I can't see how it could be operator error because the directions are clear and uncomplicated (mix with water to form yogurt-like consistency, section & apply thickly like frosting, wrap in plastic wrap/towel, wait 1/2 hour), but am willing to accept that maybe I bumbled somewhere. In any event, as soon as the mixture touched my hair I began to have misgivings as the hair quickly became like...ever overbleach your hair as a teen? Remember that spongy, weird texture? That's what it felt like. I overcame this by remembering that I was applying ground-up leaves to my hair and wrapped it in plastic wrap for the wait. Even if I had had lovely results, I'm not sure I would go through that again. The rinsing took forever. I thought I'd never get it all out. I could not work my fingers through my hair at all. It didn't even feel like hair to me while I was rinsing. Worse, handfuls of hair came out with the mud. I can afford to lose a lot of hair (and generally do, with each shampoo) so I wasn't very worried, but it was a bit alarming to see so much hair in my hands and on the shower floor. I was only able to get it out by massaging about a quarter cup of conditioner into the hair, then repeating the action till the water ran clear. I could get my fingers through it only with the conditioner. I'm resentful that it took quite a bit of my expensive Masquintense to get my hair feeling like hair again. When it dried, my hair felt squeaky and strawlike but there was (thankfully) no change in its appearance. For the rest of the day it felt strange to me--it kept getting caught on my neck, I guess its surface texture was a bit roughed up--and it still feels a little weird 24 hours later. Needless to say (so why say it, right), I will not repurchase. I'm sad it turned out this way. I did do a little research after all of this happened and learned that there are some people for whom cassia turns their hair into straw. I must be one of those people. Never again! Oh, and what a mess, I cannot begin to explain what a messy process this is. Strand test, strand test, strand test, and if you do it, do it outside, good grief what a debacle.
Me: mascara spaz. I have thick, medium-long black lashes that are so curly they curl over onto themselves, and I have never been good at applying mascara to them. I get it all over my lid and have to Q-tip it off. My go-to mascara in the past has been Maybelline Full&Soft waterproof, but I hate the way it smudges after awhile under my eyes.
It takes me over fifteen minutes to put this stuff on. Even after wiping the brush off, both the white and the black sides go on extremely clumpy. Over the white primer, the black has a "beaded" effect for me, like the lash is covered and then there is a little blob at the tip. I have to comb the heck out of my lashes after I have applied it to get the lashes to separate and to minimize the beading.
I like that it has no smell and it doesn't irritate my eyes at all. There is also NO smudging at all, and every mascara (including waterproof, including high-dollar, including everything) smudges on me. For this reason, I am using it.
I also like that (once I've combed and coaxed my lashes apart) it looks like false lashes on me. The little fibers also add enough length that my lashes start bumping up against my sunglasses, which is annoying but somehow deeply satisfying at the same time.
I don't like how stiff my lashes are after using this, but again, the lack of smudging is a big deal to me, so I put up with it. I found that combing most of it off helped with the stiffness/heaviness.
I don't know. I wish there was a "maybe" button next to "would you repurchase." I am thinking there is probably a tubing mascara out there that is easier to use than this one.
One rec: Once I take the brush out of the tube to apply, I stick the tube in a ziploc bag and seal it while I'm working. It's a pain to reopen the bag get more mascara reseal the bag repeat, but it seems to have maintained its consistency well since I bought the tube a month ago; it's not drying out on me. I have no doubt the tube would be dried up by now if I didn't do this, given the length of time it takes me to get this to look nice.
Overall, it's okay. I can't slap it on, but it does stay all day once I've labored over it. Try it if you haven't already, and especially if you are already good at application.
Gels/Soaps -Alpha Hydrox - Moisturizing Body Wash, Sea Mist
edie4711 10/10/2008 2:28:00 PM
I have moderate KP on my arms and legs, and have been very satisfied with my lactic acid lotion. However, I am lazy, and am always looking to skip a step in my routine. I purchased this body wash in the hope that it would keep my KP in check without having to deal with a separate lotion. The body wash is definitely moisturizing, as advertised. It is mild and gentle, and the smell is light and non-obnoxious. I do like using it, though I'm afraid to use it on any *ahem* delicate body parts. I have a separate body wash for that, which is a bit of a PIA. Unfortunately, it did not check my KP as I wished it would. I used it (and only it--no lotion afterwards) for two months to see if it would do the job on its own, and it just didn't. I think a wash just doesn't stay on the skin long enough to work as well as a lotion. I did want to throw out there that I ordered this direct from the alphahydrox.com website, and after ordering had to change the ship-to address very late in the game (an emergency). The customer service agent I spoke to could not have been more helpful and pleasant--a real human being. She fixed everything immediately and with a smile. I like this company and would be glad to try other products in this line, and I do *like* this body wash; it just didn't do what I bought it for, and it's so expensive that I just can't see repurchasing.