This was a terrible waste of money for me. I wore this day and night for a week before I couldn't stand it anymore - my lips had gotten more chapped and dry after I started using this balm! I generally love balms with shea butter in them, but this one didn't moisturize at all. The texture was pretty good, thick but not overly so, and the citrusy smell didn't bother me (but it wasn't my favorite). I was surprised to find that this left a whitish cast on my lips after application. It didn't matter if I used a little bit or a lot, my lips still looked very pale and sickly. I know it wasn't from a lack of exfoliation because I hardly ever forget to exfoliate my lips. The packaging was okay - a thick glass jar with a sturdy white lid - but not the most sanitary. To me, this seems way overpriced and not worth the hype. **UPDATE** I've discovered that if I take a toothpick and stir this around for a bit, that it applies much more easily and doesn't leave a white residue on lips. Maybe the beeswax was top and the other ingredients were below it? I still find that this isn't as moisturizing as other balms (Jack Black and Weleda Everon), but it's good enough to increase its score from 1 to 3.
Lotions/ Creams -Jack Black - Industrial Strength Hand Healer
jlclerf 12/15/2009 6:52:00 PM
This is my absolute favorite hand cream. I have dry, sometimes cracked skin on my hands from frequent washings. I've tried L'Occitane's Shea Hand Cream (did nothing for me), Neutrogena's Norwegian Formula Hand Cream (okay, but sticky), Weleda Skin Food (smelly and greasy) and the Lollia Shea Hand Creams (smells nice, but expensive and not very moisturizing). This Industrial Strength Hand Healer is just what I've been looking for - thick, moisturizing, long-lasting and very lightly scented. I would describe the scent as minty with a hint of wood chips - sounds weird but is totally unoffensive. I wear this at night with gloves and during the day as necessary. The difference in my skin is almost instant - the flaky, red, irritated skin seems to begin healing before my eyes. Also, my hands don't end up greasy or slippery - only moisturized and soft. This is kind of expensive, but it works so well for me that I don't mind the price.
I used this day and night for about two weeks before I decided that it wasn't moisturizing enough for me. Oddly, it leaves a wet, glossy look to the undereyes and never seems to sink in. The skin under my eyes looks the same - not worse, but not better than with other products I've tried. I can't imagine a guy wearing this - it's just too obvious. I do like the tube packaging (no tub to stick your finger in).
Really a great product, and my go-to eye shadow trio when I want to look polished, but not over the top. There is just the tiniest amount of shimmer in this, so I think almost anyone could pull this off. Totally Neutral is also the first trio of eye shadows in which I use every color, so for me this is an exceptional value. I use the darkest shade (dry) as a liner, applying with the Ecotools slanted liner brush. Then I apply the lightest shade all over the lid and almost up to my brows. Finally I use the middle shade as a wash on the lid and blend it up into the crease. The result is a nicely subtle (but still noticeable) eye that manages to accentuate my eye color without looking like I tried too hard. I don't use an eye shadow primer, but this manages to last all day long without fading or creasing. In addition, the texture of these shadows is so soft and there is absolutely no chalkiness. I'll repurchase without hesitation!
Well, against all odds, I really like this product. For about three years now I've been avoiding the use of silicones in my hair and skin products. Because of this, the texture of my hair has improved but I've had trouble finding heat-styling products that are up to par but contain no silicones. After hearing so much about Moroccan Oil on MUA, I decided to give it a try and I'm so glad I did! First, my hair is dark brown, long, fine but abundant, and either wavy or frizzy (depending on the weather). I only heat style a couple of times a week, and I use a curling iron to do so. I never blow dry. I only use Moroccan Oil if I'm going to heat style my hair. Moroccan Oil comes in a brown glass bottle with a black plastic screw-on cap. This makes it ideal for travel, but not so ideal for application! To get the right amount, I place my flat palm on the opening of the bottle and tip it completely upside down, then right side up. The amount that ends up on my palm is enough product to put on half of my dry hair before heat styling. The smell is actually really nice - I would call it a sort of jasmine/vanilla/musk scent, but definitely more floral than foodie, and not at all suffocating. This product calms the frizz in my hair, makes the curling iron go through my hair like butter, and adds shine like I've never had before. I was concerned that my hair wouldn't hold a curl after using this serum, but I was wrong! The curls are as long-lived as ever. I would absolutely buy this again, but I probably won't have to for a while. A little really does go a long way. It is pretty costly, but I've found it to be a worthy investment.
Fragrances -Christian Dior - Miss Dior Cherie L'eau
jlclerf 5/1/2009 5:48:00 PM
It's hard to describe what this smells like. First, it smells nothing like the original Miss Dior Cherie. I couldn't stand the original, it just seemed to suck all the air out of the room for me! This new version seems like it would be considered slightly green and/or aquatic - certainly a "springish" type of fragrance. I don't usually like green or aquatic notes, but the lovely drydown of Miss Dior Cherie L'eau has me wanting to suffer through the initial spritz. The drydown is fresh (but not soapy) and sweetly warm (but not cloying). I wish it didn't stay so close to the skin, but the fact that it does makes it a great scent for a date. :) The bottle is nice looking, similar to the original Miss Dior Cherie, but I've found that I have trouble getting the lid to stay on. In addition, when I spray this sometimes it leaks from the top and gets on my hands. I like this fragrance so much that I can overlook both of these things, but I can't imagine how I would travel with this bottle! I've had some difficulty finding out the actual notes of this fragrance. The most accurate description I've seen so far is a top note of orange essence, middle note of gardenia accord and a base of white musks, though I can't say I would've guessed correctly at any of those. Whatever it is, it's close to perfect for me!
Lipstick -Clinique - Different Lipstick - Tenderheart
jlclerf 2/24/2009 6:19:00 PM
I swapped for this not knowing anything about it, and was pleasantly surprised! I love this lipstick. I have a hard time finding a color that isn't too pink, isn't too brown, isn't too red, but this might be the one! It is nearly the perfect shade for me, just the tiniest bit too brown. This lipstick somehow manages to look casual and polished at the same time. The texture is really nice - not too heavy, not too sheer, and it doesn't wear off too quickly. It doesn't have any specific scent to it, just the normal scent I associate with lipsticks. I don't feel right commenting on the packaging since it's the GWP version, but it does the job. I won't hesitate to repurchase when I run out!
Misc Beauty Tools -Clarisonic - Pro Skincare Brush
jlclerf 1/15/2009 8:16:00 PM
After using this for a little over a month and a half, I've decided that it was time to face the facts and admit that the Clarisonic isn't for me. I do like the idea of it, and I have to say that my skin felt smoother when I used it. However, my skin looked the same and at times even looked worse. My skin is pretty normal - a bit on the dry side, not a lot of blemishes, some large pores and oiliness in the T zone, and the occasional hormonal or product-related break out. The Clarisonic didn't do a thing for my pores, didn't give my skin that "glow" everyone is raving about, and never did anything positive for my occasional break outs. I had a great deal of difficulty using this on my nose due to the shape and size of the brush (it's especially impossible to reach the corners of my nose), but found it easy to maneuver along the other parts of my face. My husband tried it as well, and we thought his skin looked about the same as it did before (though a bit worse with regard to break outs). I tried to blame my skin care regimen, my lack of coordination, and my finicky skin, but in the end I had to admit that I spent almost $200 for a skin care gadget that didn't work. Prior to using the Clarisonic, I had used the dreaded St. Ives Medicated Apricot Scrub for my exfoliator, and I was so happy to stop using it after reading about how bad it was for my skin. Now I'm back to using it, and I have to say my skin looks better than when I was using the Clarisonic. I can't say that I'm worse off for trying the Clarisonic (and that's only because I was able to swap it away), but the lack of results really doomed this product, for me anyway. :(
After almost a year of using this, it's about time I give Crema some respect! I really love this conditioner, and never would have thought to use it if I hadn't heard of it on MUA. I have long, thin, wavy hair that tends to frizz no matter what the weather. To combat the frizz, I used to curl it with a curling iron - not to produce structured curls, but to smooth the texture without losing volume. Since I've stared using Crema, I've been able to go without heat-styling on a number of occasions. My hair is shiny, soft and looks healthy even when it's not. I haven't had a hair cut in about six months, and the only reason I've been able to get away with that is because of this conditioner. About the smell - in the beginning, I thought it smelled weird and a bit off. As I continue to use it, I've found that it really isn't that bad! Some of the scent lingers the tiniest bit after rinsing, but it's nothing like what it smells like in the bottle. This is an expensive product for me, but one that I find well worth the money. I have repurchased a few times already, and will continue to do so.
Overall, a good item for me and one that has become my "go to" blush. I do have to apply this two times (and rather heavily) for this to show up on my skin, but I don't see that as a drawback. It leaves a fresh and natural-looking glow to my skin, and I love that it's not entirely obvious that I'm wearing blush. I could complain about the packaging, but why? It's never done me wrong, and it continues to hold up through daily use. Yes, it's cardboard and somewhat clumsy, but when I travel with this I always have room for it. I will repurchase someday, but I have a lot of this left and have yet to hit pan.
Lip Treatments -Jack Black - Intense Therapy Lip Balm spf 25
jlclerf 11/7/2008 7:30:00 PM
This is my favorite lip balm. I still buy other brands sometimes, but I always come back to this. This is the perfect consistency - not glossy, greasy, sticky or oily. I've read other reviews that claim that this is similar to petroleum-based balms in consistency, but I don't find that to be true at all. I've talked my husband into using this, and he really likes it as well. I'm glad for the SPF, but if this didn't have SPF I'd still buy it. I've tried the mint flavor and the lemon/chamomile flavor. Both are good, but I prefer the mint! Have repurchased a few times and will continue to.
I have a hard time wearing moisturizer of any kind because everything breaks me out. I bought this on a whim, figuring that if it didn't work for me that I could swap it. Well, I actually really like this stuff and after two weeks of use I haven't broken out from it! The product itself is light orange (about the color of mandarin orange yogurt) and pretty thick (it's as thick as the Body Shop's Body Butters) - way thicker than I expected, but to make up for that I use only a little bit. It doesn't feel greasy or sticky, and my face doesn't get shiny after applying it. I use a pressed mineral powder foundation, and this moisturizer truly seems to help it "set". This cream does have a distinctive non-carroty scent to it, but I like how it smells and it actually fades fairly quickly. I used to have some redness on my cheeks, but since I've started using this cream it has faded significantly. One of the only drawbacks I have is with the size of the packaging - it's really quite big for what it holds and will be a pain to travel with (but it won't stop me from bringing it!). **UPDATE: This did end up clogging my pores quite a bit, though I never developed full blown acne from it. I guess I should be thankful my skin didn't react more terribly, but I really feel a moisturizer should do no harm. I've stopped using this and all other moisturizers permanently. **UPDATE #2: Well, it's winter now and my skin was crying out for this cream so I've started using it again. So far, I've only had one or two blemishes appear but I can't necessarily blame it on this moisturizer. Will continue to use until my skin decides to revolt!
Lip Treatments -Fresh - Sugar Lip Treatment SPF 15
jlclerf 8/3/2006 6:29:00 PM
This product is simply okay. I like the smell, I like the SPF, but the moisturizing capability disappoints me. When my lips feel really chapped and irritated, this doesn't do much to help. The packaging, however, is fantastic - I wish more lipbalms/lipsticks put so much effort into their packaging. Beautiful copper-toned brushed metal tube with twist off top. I think that Aquaphor works better, plus the price is right. *UPDATE* Have abandoned this and every other balm I own in favor of Jack Black's lip balm.
Lotions/ Creams -Bath and Body Works - Pomegranate Martini
jlclerf 6/30/2006 6:05:00 PM
I generally like BBW scents, but to me this smelled like Nair. The scent fades a bit with time, but not nearly enough to make it worth repurchase.
Moisturizers -Clean & Clear - Oil-Free Oxygenating Ultra-Light Moisturizer
jlclerf 3/10/2006 12:05:00 AM
Well, if I had read the reviews prior to buying I probably would've never tried this. However, I'm glad I did because this is the only moisturizer I've ever used that doesn't make me break out. It's not a horribly rich moisturizer. When I apply it, it sinks right in and feels nice and clean (not greasy). I do experience some of the tingling and stinging others have mentioned, but it doesn't last and I feel it's a small price to pay. This product has a bluish tint to it that I feel reduces the redness in my skin. I like this moisturizer, and I can't say that about any of the others. *UPDATE* I stopped using this and couldn't tell the difference. I guess it wasn't that good of a moisturizer after all - reduced to 3 lippies.