Midori is a bright (not neon) lime green with gold shimmer. It's a very pretty, cheery color that surprisingly looks good on me. I might repurchase, especially since the Zoya formula is good and this is an unusual shade.
Bright, girly Skipper pink with a touch of peach and subtle gold duochrome effect. It's not the most flattering color on me (light, olive-yellow undertone), so I won't repurchase, though I have no problem with the formula, price, etc.
This is an amazing color. It's a midnight blue jelly absolutely jam-packed with multicolored (though mainly blue) glitter. It has a somewhat thick, sticky texture that requires some thinning, though it's not as bad as Cosmic. Looks amazing on the nail--deep, flashy with incredible depth. If you were disappointed by Cosmic, you'll probably be thrilled with Meteor Shower.
Treatments -Sally Hansen - Instant Cuticle Remover
jiney17 7/24/2010 3:01:00 PM
Inexpensive, easy to use, effective, quick and comes in convenient packaging. What's not to like? I'd definitely repurchase.
ABOUT ME: Straight hair, normal amount, medium thickness (neither coarse nor fine), a few inches past my shoulders, healthy, virgin. Always looking for a volume/body boost that won't make my hair all frizzy and flyaway.
SCENT: Fake strawberry. It kind of reminds me of Bath & Bodyworks shower gel--really sweet and artificial. I don't like it but I can stand it. Fortunately, the scent isn't too strong and doesn't linger in my hair.
PERFORMANCE: Lathers up well, despite the lack of sulfates. I only need a half-dollar size dollop. Rinses cleanly. I was surprised at how nice this makes my hair. If you've been using shampoos with SLS, you'll need to use the Superstar shampoo for a few days before you'll notice a difference. (Your hair has to adjust to SLS-free shampoo.) My hair actually feels thicker, in a springy, swingy sort of way, as if each hair shaft is bigger. But it's not flat or weighed-down like bodifying shampoos tend to do to it. This shampoo also preserves the slight wave in my hair, makes it look shiny and feel smooth, and even, oddly enough, makes my hair dry faster (I air dry). I'm really impressed.
PACKAGING: Hot pink, very girly, not my speed but it's fine. I like that this is available in both squeeze tubes and bigger pump bottles.
PRICE/AVAILABILITY: Expensive compared to drugstore shampoos, but about average for a salon brand. I think it's worth it, though. I don't spend a lot of money on hair products and this shampoo cuts down on my need for styling stuff.
ETA: It's about a month later of near-daily use and I still love this shampoo. I do use a clarifying 'poo once in awhile to ensure this keeps working the way it should. I've also noticed that Bedhead Superstar seems to bring out my subtle chestnut highlights, which is a bonus. I've even grown to like the scent, which does linger very faintly.
Loose Powders -La Mer - Skincolor De La Mer - The Powder - Poudre de La Mer
jiney17 7/19/2010 5:06:00 PM
ABOUT ME: Combination-normal, light-medium, neutral olive/yellow complexion (tans easily but pale in the winter), sensitive, prone to acne and seborrheic dermatitis.
TEXTURE/FINISH: The Beige color has no shimmer and a softly matte, natural-looking finish. The powder is fine, almost creamy-feeling, and very easy to blend. You can layer without it ever looking cakey or bad, it feels light and kind of melts into your skin. It's hard to believe that the main ingredient is talc. I prefer using a brush with this since it's a tinted powder and I don't want it to go too dark.
COLOR: There are 4 colors: Translucent, Creme, Neutral and Beige. I have Beige, which looks shockingly dark and orange-y in the tub. I figured it would be a disaster on me. But I dusted it on with my skunk brush (Px) and was surprised to find that it seemed to blend in without looking muddy or orange. It does seem to make my tinted moisturizers look too warm and peach for me. If I wear this powder, I usually only put it on over sunscreen and nothing else. My sunscreens generally pale me out a touch, so the La Mer powder adds a healthy, subtle touch of color.
PERFORMANCE: No breakouts, no irritation, no clogged pores. Does not provide much oil protection, though I rely on a layer of my silk and pearl powder combination to control my t-zone.
PACKAGING: I hate how substantial the tub is--it must weigh 10 lbs. and is made of thick, breakable (or at least chippable) glass. It feels and looks like a rock.
PRICE/AVAILABILITY: $65 for 25 grams.
REPURCHASE?: I'm not sure. I'll probably continue to use this until I've finished the jar. I'll decide then whether it's worth another splurge and update this review.
INGREDIENTS: I don't have a complete listing for the Beige color, but I do know the main ingredient in the powder is talc.
COLOR: Dusty aqua, slightly more blue than green. It reminds me of a bluer version of "Jade is the New Black" by OPI. It's a unique, retro sort of shade and very flattering on me. It's a wee bit lighter than it appears in the picture above
TEXTURE: Slightly thick, as with all Misa polishes. Still very workable.
WEAR: Pretty good. Not as awesome as OPI but better than many other brands.
PRICE/AVAILABILITY: Inexpensive at about 3-4 USD per bottle. Hard to find in retail stores. Best bet is online. The rarer, more in-demand colors can be difficult to source or more expensive if you go the eBay route.
This polish was a sort of dormant lemming of mine. A shade I've tried on at the NARS counter, but wasn't impressed enough with to fork over $18 for a bottle. I also managed to dig up a reasonable dupe (Maybelline Pink Stars, now discontinued) which satisfied my desire for a pink glitter polish.
Arabesque is neutral pink glitter. You need about three coats for satisfactory coverage if you want to wear this by itself. The glitter is similar to the kind OPI uses in its Mad Hatter polish--medium chunky, but not rough to the touch when it dries. It's sort of flat and round and reminds me of fish scales. Very flashy and blingy and awesome, but the color keeps it feminine and pretty.
I compared Arabesque to Pink Stars and found that they are not quite as similar as I'd thought. Pink Stars is slightly deeper and more of a mauve-y color. The glitter also seems to be smaller. Arabesque's glitter seems to be more irregularly shaped, which gives an interesting gloss and depth to the polish and which picks up the light more than Pink Stars. The color looks slightly peachier and warmer than Pink Stars but I think that's because it's a shade of pink that leans more red than blue. I have to say, now that I've seen them side-by-side, I prefer the NARS polish. It pains me to say this, but Arabesque just looks more special and the color is slightly more flattering on me.
This is a comparison picture between Maybelline Pink Stars (left) and NARS Arabesque (right). If you can't see it, look through the pictures in my profile:
Hair Styling Tools -Unlisted Brand - Magic Scroo (Goody Spin Pin knock-off)
jiney17 7/17/2010 11:48:00 AM
ABOUT PRODUCT: I saw a YouTube video demonstrating Goody Spin Pins with someone who has similar hair texture and was sold. I looked for them, but my local drugstores didn't have any in stock. When I looked online, I saw some bloggers mention that Spin Pins aren't a new concept. A man had invented and marketed them years ago, but the product didn't get much exposure and his patent ran out. I found someone on eBay who was selling "Magic Scroo" pins. They look exactly like the Goody Spin Pins: sturdy black wire spiral pins, rounded tips. They are about 2 inches long and 0.5 inches wide. And the Magic Scroo pins are much cheaper than the Goody ones. At 30 cents each, they are worth testing out.
ABOUT ME: Straight, layered hair that comes a few inches below my shoulders. It is healthy, medium thickness and normal texture (not fine and not coarse). Unless I put a lot of product in it, my hair tends to be too smooth for normal bobby pins to work. So if I do a bun, I have to use hairbands to keep it up. This works well, but it also makes the bun stick out from my head rather than staying flat against it. Hair also still slips out sometimes.
HOW TO USE: Put your hair into a ponytail (no need to use a hair band), twist it into a bun as you normally would. Then, take one pin and (making sure the 'open' part of the pin is pointed down), screw the pin into the top of your bun, spinning the pin clockwise. To make sure it really anchors your hair down, angle the pin toward your scalp. Then, use another pin and (making sure the open part is pointed up), screw the pin into the bottom of your bun. Again, angle the pin toward your scalp. In order to take the pins out, just unscrew them--twist them counterclockwise. It takes a little practice to get used to them, but you'll find that in the end, these are way simpler to use than normal pins. If you're still confused, just google "spin pin" to see directions or search for "spin pin" on youtube for instructional videos.
PERFORMANCE: These pins are FANTASTIC! They make putting your hair into a bun so quick and easy. Rather than dozens of bobby pins, you only need two spiral pins to hold your hair securely (though women with very long or very thick hair might need to use more). These are also very comfortable and don't poke your scalp or snag your hair (at least, medium-textured hair). Best of all, my buns actually look like normal buns, without tons of crazy pins and hair bands all over them.
PRICE/AVAILABILITY: 1.50 USD for five pins (no shipping costs). Spin Pins are 6 USD for two pins. Seriously, don't waste your money on the Goody ones--get these from eBay for what amounts to the change rattling around the bottom of your purse.
REPURCHASE?: Yes, absolutely. Though these seem sturdy enough that they won't break or bend easily. I might buy more in case these disappear for some reason.
I have this in Pale Peach, which reminds me of the yellowy orange color of a manila envelope. I read the reviews here carefully and figured out that Bisque has pink undertones that I don't need. My undereye circles are a greyish-purplish-brownish shade. The warm peachy color cancels out all that coolness and brightens up the whole area way better than a plain yellow (which leaves a pale grey-blue shadow) or pink (which tends to lighten the area without correcting the discoloration).
Texture is thick, creamy, a little sticky. Very, very pigmented so you only need the tiniest bit for each eye. It will be dry and cakey-looking if you don't smear a rich eye cream on beforehand (I use Kiehl's Ultra Eye Cream with Avocado). Put on more than you usually do, and don't wait until it's absorbed before you apply the corrector. Dip the tip of your concealer brush (I use a flat taklon one from L'Oreal) into the corrector and gently pat it around the inner corner of your eye, halfway around the undereye area. Then use your ring finger to tap the concealer, blending up toward your lashline. At this point, the eye cream should be absorbed.
You can apply a flesh-colored concealer on top if you need the extra coverage. I sometimes skip it since it looks pretty natural on its own and I don't like piling stuff onto my face. I dust a loose powder (silk powder or Laura Mercier's) on top to set it. Lasts all day with no creasing or extra dryness or cakiness.
This helps diminish my undereye circles, but doesn't completely cover them up. I may repurchase, though I want to experiment with some other concealers before committing to another one of these.
ABOUT ME: Dark hair and eyes, light yellow-olive complexion, normal skin, non-oily lids.
COLOR: This is a mid-tone taupe, neutral on me, with a fine silvery sheen that cools it off a bit. Very flattering and versatile color.
TEXTURE: Like silk velvet. Blends beautifully. Comparable to NARS, MAC Veluxe Pearl, Stila, UD.
PACKAGING: A sleek little clear acrylic compact that takes up very little space in a makeup bag or case.
PRICE: Expensive at about $20 each. Some of the shades (like this one) are more popular than others and always seem to be sold out at the various retailers online. I had to troll eBay for one since there aren't any department stores near where I live.
This is a true, yellow cream, mid-tone rather than pastel, bright but not neon. I needed three careful coats to get the desired intensity and coverage. The formula is thin and runny and dries very, very slowly. Even brushing an additional coat on top of a not-quite dry one can ruin a nail. Yellows are problematic in general, but this polish gave me particular trouble. I think the brand in general has issues with their formulas. For that reason, I probably won't purchase more Misa polishes unless they're unique colors. Easily dupable shades (which Happy Happy is) are not worth the hassle.
ABOUT ME: Long, straight, medium-textured hair, normal amount. No major issues, though it gets a bit frizzy sometimes and I like anything that adds volume and enhances the slight wave in my hair (1b).
FRAGRANCE: Kind of strange, but not awful. It's a sort of sweet, sharply metallic scent. It definitely does linger.
TEXTURE: Thick and creamy.
PERFORMANCE: This is a pretty good deep conditioner. I use it once or twice per week to give my hair a bit of a boost. It softens and cuts frizz without weighing down my hair. Since I have normal hair, I doubt this stuff is a necessity and will experiment with other, cheaper deep conditioners. I'm also uncertain about the need for animal lard in this product. I
PACKAGING: A simple blue squeeze tube. No complaints here.
PRICE: Expensive and it's only available at salons and some specialty beauty stores. Occasionally you can find it at off-price retailers like Marshalls/TJ Maxx. And it does come in multiple sizes, including sample sized tubes that can be great for figuring out whether this works for you.
REPURCHASE?: Maybe. I'll keep this on the list since it works well for me. But I'll only repurchase if I can't find something cheaper that works just as well.
ABOUT ME: Normal/combination skin, acne-prone, sensitive, seborrheic dermatitis
COLOR: Clear, light bubblegum pink. No shimmer. It goes a little peachy on me, but that's due to my complexion.
TEXTURE: Thin, creamy liquid. It's not as thin and fluid as Benetint (which is like colored water) and is therefore a little easier to blend because it doesn't dry as quickly.
WEAR: Pretty good. It lasts a workday, but isn't quite as 'permanant' as Benetint.
PACKAGING: Shiny metallic pink bottle with a built-in nail polish-style brush in the cap. It's kind of cute, though the opaque bottle makes it hard to tell how much you have. And the brush kind of sucks. I only use it to dot the blush on (or make an "x" on the apple of each cheek) and blend with my fingers.
PRICE: It's kind of pricey at 28 USD for 0.42 oz, but it does last awhile because you only use a small amount each time.
REPURCHASE?: I think so. This is more flattering on me and easier to wear than Benetint, which can be a bit harsh sometimes. This is particularly nice for hot, steamy weather when cream or powder blushes seem too heavy.
Yummy-looking medium milk chocolate brown. Real chocolate with a hint of that reddish undertone that cocoa has. Nice shiny creme finish. Excellent coverage even with one coat. No complaints about price or packaging. This is a good cool season color.