Treatments -Pantene - Beautiful Lengths Replenishing Mask
maekay 5/2/2011 12:28:00 AM
I am so totally in the minority here in my review of this product. I bought this to save a little money since my most-loved hair mask by Neutrogena is a wee bit pricey. Alas, I've given this product several chances and still, I always get a quarter of the moisturizing, normalizing, glossy wonderfulness that Neutrogena's Triple Moisture hair mask gives me. I just stopped at Walgreen's last night and shelled out the $ for Neutrogena, threw this in the trash, put my Triple Moisture mask on in the shower and all is well with my hair once more. If you only need light, extra moisture for your hair, or your hair is of un-processed/thinner texture, this will probably work for you great. I am guilty of daily blowdrying and curling iron use as well as lots of trips to the salon for color maintenance so I need the big guns.
Moisturizers -Neutrogena - Rapid Wrinkle Repair Moisturizer
maekay 5/2/2011 12:19:00 AM
Big time bummer for me, it broke me out. I figured this would be the next step to preemptively strike against future signs of aging for me. I have been a pretty loyal Neutrogena customer for many years now off and on, but this is one of the few times I've struck out. I have been able to "up" the retinol ante in their Anti-wrinkle line from original formula to Deep Wrinkle with great results as my skin stays clearer and well-moisturized. I tried the night version of this, not the day. I liked the light fragrance, the packaging is very good for keeping the retinol stable, I think, and the pump is always a favorite mode for dispensing product in my book. HOWEVER, little by little, every day, I was getting a zit here, a zit there in places on my face I never break out at. It was easy to deduce the culprit here since this was the only newbie in my regimen. A shame, as I have no doubt that it delivers great results and I feel that besides the pimples, I was starting to see some of them inside that first week. But for the sake of my self esteem, I had to quick, run out and buy a new tube of Ageless Intensives Anti-Wrinkle Deep Wrinkle. I don't really have deep wrinkles, but a) an ounce of prevention=maybe not so deep in the near future and b) my skin sure love, love, loves a good dose of retinol!
Skincare - Face -Avon - ANEW REJUVENATE Night Sapphire Emulsion
maekay 10/24/2010 1:14:00 AM
Holy wow! I love this stuff!!! It's been doing wonders for the texture of my skin. It absolutely does what it says! I also love that it's the same price as the night cream in this line, so even though it's a fancy "emulsion" and has bits of sparkle in it which most companies would consider justification enough for a higher price tag, it's still an affordable upgrade/alternative night time moisturizer. Seriously, try this! Be warned, however, if your skin is sensitive, which, mine is not (could handle Neutrogena's Deep Wrinkle retinol formula like a champ!), this will tingle/sting a teensy bit. It goes away very quickly and I don't really mind. In my head, I'm like: "Yeah, go to work Sapphire Emulsion---GET those expression lines, show my oily pores who's boss!" lol. I heart this product with all my might. Smells lovely, and a little dab goes a long way, be careful not to over-apply, it will be a regrettable choice=greasy face in the a.m. So glad I switched to this, never going back to the night cream in this line, this product DEEE-LIVERS! It's the secret weapon in my skincare regimen.
Mascara -Maybelline - Volum' Express Turbo Boost Waterproof
maekay 10/24/2010 12:42:00 AM
For me, this mascara is perfection. It holds a curl like a champ, doesn't smudge, easy to remove for a waterproof formula, and the brush is a real brush not one of those crappy new rubber bristle brushes. What I also love about the brush is that its bristles are tangle-y enough to grab my lashes and give them oomph and volume, yet the entire construct of it is narrow enough that I'm not constantly, accidentally smudging any mascara onto my contacts when I apply. That usually happens with the fat brushes I have used in the past (cosmetic companies like to drive home the "volumizing" quality of a mascara by packaging it with a giant, fat brush). The narrowness of the brush also allows me to really work the mascara onto my lashes and get at all of them. Thank you Maybelline for coming out with this mascara! The formula isn't too thick or heavy, it also isn't too wet or gloppy, luv! I have stick straight, stubborn, long lashes and after two coats I easily have pretty, dramatic lashes that are noticeable without being spider-tastic, crunchy, clumpy, or over the top. An elegant mascara, my HG.
Misc Beauty Tools -Revlon - Extra Curl Lash Curler
maekay 8/24/2010 5:38:00 PM
To date, the best eyelash curler I've ever bought! Revlon implements are usually pretty darn good. This is even better than my MAC curler, fits super close and comfortably to my lid-shape/lash baseline and since I switched mascaras I can really appreciate the curl it gives me. A+
Mascara -Maybelline - Full 'N Soft Mascara Waterproof
maekay 8/23/2010 11:58:00 AM
Just kind of underwhelming. It holds a curl, to be sure but it's bit tough to remove and it doesn't do much for me in terms of volume or creating a little bit of a fun/pretty lash dramatic look. I have since tried and switched to Volum' Express Turbo Boost waterproof, which has become my HG.
Pressed Powders -Cover Girl - Clean pressed powder - Sensitive skin
maekay 8/18/2010 12:28:00 AM
Love that there's no fragrance, hate that it breaks me out. Seems less powder-tastic than other CG pressed powders, good color too (bought this in Ivory)---but, CG powder products do not agree with my acne prone skin. Cool, sleek package re-design, but I agree that it's tough to open too so it loses marks there also.
It kills me to drag the rating down at all for this product because it just a GORGEOUS natural, anybody-can-wear-it color but I have to...I have recently come to the conclusion that whatever CG puts in their powder products (minus the eyeshadow) breaks me out. I have used CG blush in the past and probably attributed the breakouts then to stress or whatever sub-par skincare I thought was good enough at the time. But having started up my wonderful Avon Clearskin/Anew regimen that is just such a godsend for my skin, I have realized that CG blush and powder is to blame for my recent little spate of bumps. I don't think I've ever used CG blush and powder in tandem and now that I can say for sure that both of them are 2 things I have tried as "new" in my usual makeup kit I know for sure that they are to blame. If you're not prone to breakouts, by all means, enjoy! It's very flattering, it lasts all day pretty much and you get a lot of product for very little money.
Um, this would be a big fat "no" for me. Killed my curl, did not add thickness or length. LashBlast Volume actually delivered more on the same claims this version makes. However I had to take the volume version back to the store because the WATERPROOF formula SMUDGED on me like a mofo! What the heck was up with that?? Anyway, back to Fusion: don't like, returned within 48 hours of purchasing. I've about had it with the weird rubber bristle craze, these brushes look neat but just don't "work" my lashes like an actual bristle does. THERE, I said it! I am officially over the novelty. The packaging was a pretty purple color with this one but the entire LashBlast line and I are through. I'm glad it works for some people. I personally find CG's re-packaging and whole brand re-fresh to be pretty cool and long overdue but they're still only a half-step above Revlon in the drugstore mascaras that suck ranking. I am finding that certain drugstore brands make certain categories of products well and others not so much. For me, L'Oreal gets mascara correct the most, followed closely by Maybelline, then everybody else jockeys for the okay to horrible ranking with Revlon coming in dead last every time. Seriously---I can't ever remember Revlon making a mascara that had any cult status or buzz or QUALITY and I wonder if they invest less in this end of product development...hmmm...food for thought but I digress. Did not mean to turn this into a Mascara Thesis, lol! Bottom line, this one sucks, don't buy it!
Mascara -Maybelline - Volum' Express The Colossal Waterproof
maekay 8/15/2010 2:30:00 AM
Flurgh, I hate to be the Debbie Downer here but I didn't find myself very much impressed. Did not really give any volume to my skinny long lashes and I ended up returning it the same day I bought it. Back to L'Oreal Voluminous waterproof for me. Every time I try a different brand with flashy volume-building promises, it never lives up to its claims. I also found the formula to be not nearly so lash-friendly lush and smooth as Voluminous.
Great texture, but too, too rich a pink for my fair coloring. It lasted just okay throughout the day, hard for me to give a fair assessment on staying power because I had to apply just a light dusting to avoid looking fevered. Also, I wish they just would package it as a round pan like MAC does, I am so tired of any blushes coming packaged with the pretense that you might actually USE the crappy, or in some cases, not-so-crappy little brush included. You get way more product for your money if the blush comes in just a pan on its own.
Moisturizers -Avon - ANEW Rejuvenate Night Revitalizing Cream
maekay 7/12/2010 3:16:00 PM
Avon skincare is ALL I will be using from here on out until it stops working for me. I love the Clearskin Professional line, it has saved me from acne hell. And I am REALLY liking this night time cream from the Anew line. It does exactly what it promises. I love the consistency, sinks in beautifully, I DO wake up to skin that is more evenly toned and my pores are more refined. I have only just started using it so the anti-aging properties have barely started to show---that sort of effect typically takes 2-3 weeks to see with most moisturizers. I also really like the scent in this product, very subtle and kinda girly-spa smelling. This really seems to be a perfect fit for my age bracket's skincare needs. I do find it a bit expensive but still, better priced than most products you would buy at the department store, and some drugstore brand's creams are around $30 if you're getting into their super-researched, packed-with-science creams and lotions. I have been so impressed with this product I ordered the day cream version last week and also got the eye cream in the line for $10 to boot, since that was the current sale online :-D good deal, the eye cream's $28! I have been using Avon's Solutions Complete Balance day cream but it's only just okay---and for an okay price of $13 I am finding, the older I get, the more my skin seems to respond to what I pay for in products. I had been using Neutrogena's Deep Wrinkle night cream and at around $20, just like the price indicates---I was getting middling results with it. My skin does seem to handle/respond to retinol products but the overall effect has been just "meh" in comparison to what I have seen with Anew Rejuvenate. I would, of course, prefer it packaged in a tube like Neutrogena does with their night cream----very sanitary, but when I use creams packaged in jars, I just take a cotton swab to scoop out small dabs and keep my germ-ladened fingernail bed out of the picture altogether ;) Overall: Thank you Avon, for keeping your skincare promises with me. Money well-spent!
Cleansers -Avon - Clearskin Professional Deep Pore Cleansing Scrub
maekay 7/12/2010 2:54:00 PM
This is just THE BEST cleanser for my acne-prone skin! I have combination skin with large pores that neeeeeeds exfoliation but it has to be gentle. The teensy scrubbing granules in this cleanser are elegant perfection for me. I also like how creamy this cleanser is and it gets my skin just the right kind of squeaky clean! I wasn't so keen on the menthol in this formula at first but now I find it totally refreshing :) The entire 3-step system has been my skincare miracle and I hope Avon NEVER discontinues it! I did review the whole kit separately. As someone who has tried ALOT of acne skincare and otherwise cleansing systems both high-end and low end over the years, you can bet I've done my research and wasted lots of money on products that made promises they just didn't keep. I would recommend this kit to anyone suffering from acne problems---it's better-priced than Proactiv, it's waaaay more effective (I think) and at least you can get a trial kit to see if you like it, only costs about $10 for that. Incidentally, I am surprised I am the first to write an individual review for this product since steps 2 and 3 in the system have their separate reviews on MUA. Anyway, I wanted to write a review for each step on it's own so I could give a more detailed assessment of them. My kit review is a little lengthy but it was important to me to explain what I had been going through and to let other 30 year old women out there know that it's something to do with turning that age that seems to set off an acne flare-up of epic proportions! Not for everybody, but as I did my own desperate research to fix my skin situation I kept coming across other reviews mentioning this same age-linked issue and it at least made me feel better to know that was somehow why I was experiencing this skin nightmare. Weird, right? But hey, thanks to Avon's Clearskin Professional line, nightmare OVER. yay! Happy Ending!
Toners -Avon - Clearskin Professional Clarifying Toner Pads Step 2
maekay 7/12/2010 2:40:00 PM
Okay, while I can review this product, technically, very highly---this is the one snag in the perfection of Clearskin Professional. A) Why, oh, why can't this just be a nice bottle of liquid I pour onto a cotton round like all the other toners and astringents out there in the world? B) Why can't they at least package 100 pads instead of 45 in the full size version of this??? I got kinda smart about figuring a way around running out of this so quickly: I cut the pads evenly in half so I can end up only using one pad per day. I don't need a whole pad to cover my face and treat it properly with the toner. Otherwise, the actual details of the product: it stings rather encouragingly on nasty zits that need to be treated/disappear, I do want that a bit out of a toner or astringent---lets me know it's got effective acne-killing medicine in it. I don't find the formula drying, and it works eloquently in harmony with the cleanser and treatment lotion in the entire 3-step kit. But dang it, Avon---why ya gotta be so stingy with only 45 pads??? And better yet---why CAN'T this be a liquid in a bottle?? I find the price a little steep at $10 for only slightly more than a month's supply of product (if you cheat like me and cut the pads in half). Usually, Avon seems to be running sales frequently enough that I'll probably get a good deal when I need to re-order, but sheesh---it kinda feels like a rip-off at face value. However, for being a product that has helped rescue my skin from my acne nightmare, it still receives high marks.
Moisturizers -Avon - Clearskin Professional Daily Correcting Lotion Step 3
maekay 7/12/2010 2:17:00 PM
This is the last step in the Clearskin Professional 3-Step System and it is a fantastic all-over treatment for my acne-prone skin. It is gentle, non-drying and absorbs very quickly! I was very impressed by its consistency on the first application. I consider this a treatment and NOT a moisturizer, I do think the name is mis-leading but I have often found that many 3-step acne systems call their third treatment step a "lotion", and I suppose it could be for skin that is extremely acne prone because it usually cannot handle most moisturizers. However, I learned early with Proactiv to always follow the "clarifying lotion" step with my day or night actual moisturizer. When I used Proactiv their third step treatment lotion was awful compared to this, gloppy, drying, did not absorb well! In fact, Avon's Clearskin Professional line is the first time salicylic acid has EVER worked for my skin---and this system works soooo well!!! I did a full review of the entire 3 Step System so you can understand the crisis my skin was in. This whole line has been a godsend for me! I also think this product's packaging is excellent, the pump locks so you can easily travel with it and it's a nice, slim bottle that doesn't take up too much space in the medicine cabinet. A+, Avon!