I happened upon some Kevin Murphy videos on youtube and read all the rave reviews for Anti Gravity. It sounded like the answer to my hair prayers so I ordered from a bottle from amazon.com. I was really excited about what Kevin Murphy said in one of his videos--his products don't contain any silicones because silicones are the death of hold. Yes, I agree! Unfortunately, Anti Gravity doesn't do a damn thing for my hair. Nothing. Zero. Zilch. It has a lovely clean lavendar fragrance and gives me a the tiniest bit of volume, but that's it. I can't get any volume or hold with Anti-Gravity. The product is very light, almost like a gel, and dries without any crunchiness. Unfortunately, it doesn't give me any hold or texture. My hope was that I could use Anti-Gravity with my curling iron/hot rollers to keep the curl in my hair, but it's not the miracle product I thought it would be. Oh well, I guess that's my own fault. . Oh, and I have to say that the packaging is lousy. I think a sleek tube or bottle would've been much nicer than a bottle shaped like a box. It's so awkward to handle and doesn't really save me any space, if that was his idea. Just weird.
Eye Shadow -BeneFit Cosmetics - Velvet eyeshadow- Fawn Over Me
pocky 7/15/2012 8:39:00 PM
This is my everyday shadow. It's the perfect neutral shimmery lid shade for me. I love that it doesn't have any peach or pink, which I don't mind, but peach or pink stands out a little more on my shades and isn't what I call "neutral." My favorite way to wear Fawn Over Me is packed over my Laura Mercier Metallic cream shadow in gold. Fawn Over Me is a very lovely, velvety, and blendable shadow but I find the pigmentation a little lacking for my taste so I can only get the look I want by layering it over a primer or cream shadow. Most days, I contour with MAC Soft Brown or another similar shade, and highlight the brow area. I then either apply mascara for a soft neutral look or I add winged dark brown cream liner and red lipstick for a more glamorous look.
Bronzers -Chanel - Soleil Tan de Chanel - Bronzing Makeup Base
pocky 7/15/2012 8:29:00 PM
This is a great cream bronzer but it's not an absolute must have for me. Since it's a cream I think it's only best for normal to combination and dry skin types. The color is not exactly universal and only works for lighter skin tones. I am an NC 25ish and this bronzer gives me the slightest tan look. The color is not buildable and I'm pretty sure won't show up on darker skin tones. It is also more of a peachy bronze color so it might show up orange on some people. It doesn't show up orange on my, but I can definitely tell that it's not as bronzey as my Nars Laguna. The product itself is a cream but it is rather hard and densely packed so you're going to need a stiff, dense brush to pick up product. I don't like swirling my brush in a creamy product and I got tired of having to wash my brush all the time so I went from using a MAC 109 contour brush (which was perfect for the job, by the way) to just using my fingers. The fragrance is blessedly very light and pleasant. This is a very nice bronzer if you've got the right skin type and coloring, but it is not a Holy Grail for me, simply because I find powder bronzers easier and more versatile.
Lotions/ Creams -Unlisted Brand - Summers Labs Cutemol
pocky 7/14/2012 7:48:00 PM
My Dermanail came with a tiny tube of Cutemol so I used it and became hooked. It is very thick, almost sticky, and defintely a heavy hand cream, but it is not greasy and lasts through hand washings. I loved LUSH Lemony Flutter but it is so oily on my hands. Cutemol is more emollient than oily. I keep tubes all over the place and am constantly applying. My hands and cuticles are so soft now. I can always tell when I'm not applying enough Cutemol because my hands start to feel really dry. Cutemol is fragrance free so it doesn't have any added perfumes but it does have an odd smell that some might find unpleasant. It reminds me a lot of the original white Ivory Soap bar, but I can see how some people who are used to nice smelling creams would find Cutemol a weird smelling.
Eye Shadow -Laura Mercier - Metallic Creme Eye Color in Alloy
pocky 7/14/2012 7:36:00 PM
I've had my tube of Alloy for 3 years now and it hasn't shown any signs of turning bad or running out. I wish these LM creme eye colors in the tube came in more colors and also in non-metallic colors because they are fabulous. Alloy and Gold are my two absolute favorites and I wear them nearly every day. I LOVE not having to dig into a pot or swipe a wand on my eyelids. The consistency of this shadow is very light and application is super easy. I just apply with my fingers and blend out. I like to wear Alloy under my powder eyeshadows. Not only does it make my shadow last longer but it also gives me more of an intense application. I always wear Alloy over a primer so I can't say if it's creaseless on its own, but I imagine that it must be for those without oily eyelids since it dries to a very nice satiny finish and is not sticky or greasy at all.
This is a really nice eyebrow pencil, but unfortunately, I could not find a color that worked for me. The slim, twist-up pencil is a lot like MAC's brow pencils at half the price. I have dark brown hair but I have somewhat light skin (NC20ish) and very sparse brows so I can only wear taupey brown brow pencils. Dark brown or black look very unnatural on me so I bought Medium Brown and Dark Blonde. What was interesting was how Dark Blonde is darker than Medium Brown. The Dark Blonde looked better on me but it is not even close to MAC Lingering and looked really unnatural in sunlight. I looked like i had drawn my brows in. Medium Brown looked more like a blonde brown pencil so it did not work for me either. I actually already have my HG brow pencils but they're all so ridiculously expensive that I'm always keeping my eyes out for anything cheaper. Unfortunately, it looks like I will be sticking with the expensive brow pencils.
Mascara -Christian Dior - Diorshow New Look Mascara
pocky 7/14/2012 7:10:00 PM
This weird little mascara was such a dissapointment. The brush is really tiny and doesn't do much of anything for me. It's also extremely flimsy and can't even stand up to my puny lashes. With a bigger brush, such as the original DiorShow mascara, I can coax my lashes to fan up and out but with this puny brush, I got no volume and the heavy wet formula weighed my lashes down and turned them hard and spiky. I can't believe Dior turned out such an awful mascara.
Eye Makeup Remover -Koh Gen Do - Cleansing Spa Water
pocky 7/14/2012 7:04:00 PM
Why oh why are Japanese beauty products always so freakin' expensive? This product is amazing but it is so ridiculously expensive. I only us it ocassionally to clean my entire face when I've wearing long-wear makup. I stick with my inexpensive eye makeup remover to remove eye makeup. If it weren't for the expensive, I would use Cleansing Spa Water every day. It cleanses all makeup off my face without leaving any residue or fragrance or my skin dry and tight. Too bad it's so expensive.
This is not a bad mascara but it's not HG material and I will not be repurchasing, given its price. The mascara is very wet so I have to always wipe off tons of excess mascara if I don't want to make a mess of my lashes. It gives decent lengthening and thickening, but nothing special and certainly not as good as my Cover Girl Lash Perfection. The wierd bristles at the end of the wand don't do anything for reaching corner lashes. It's actually a little hard to use and I gave up before I poked my eyes out. I liked how this mascara didn't flake or clump, but the wet formula turned my lashes spike-looking instead of lush and full. I certainly never got any dramatic results.
I had my first Vi Peel four months ago. My skin now looks pretty much the way it did before I had my peel so I can't say it was worth the $400 I paid. My experience with the Vi Peel was also a little traumatic so I doubt I'll ever do it again, especially for $400. I got the peel done at my dermatologist's office. I was told I could go back to work the next day (Thursday) so I didn't plan to take any time off. I have also never had a peel of any kind before so I didn't know what to expect and took my doctor's staff at their word that I wouldn't need any time off work. On Thursday, I woke up with my face mottled deep red like I had measles. I could not go to work looking like that so there's one day off work. My skin started peeling off right on cue on Saturday and had mostly peeled off by Sunday but my skin was so red, raw-looking, and painful that I could not go back to work until Tuesday. That's another day off work for a total of three days for a stupid skin peel. My skin was red, raw, and itchy for an entire week. During that time, I could not wear any makeup (it just looked terrible but it didn't hurt) and could not even wear sunscreen. I had to walk around with a big umbrella the few times when I went outside. Once I started to finally heal, I could tell that my skin was a lot smoother and silkier than before. People told me my skin had a glow to it but I never saw that myself. Unfortunately, I also had some mysterious hyperpigmentation that my dermatologist couldn't explain and my skintone stayed "tanned" for a good three months. I was not happy about that since I didn't get the Vi Peel to look tanned, but my doctor gave me a bleaching cream and the hyperpigmentation eventually faded. I don't regret having the Vi Peel since my skin has now fully recovered but I don't think it's worth the money and I will not be doing it again. My skin is not perfect but I don't really have any skin issues other than a little rosacea and an ocassional breakout so perhaps the Vi Peel is best for older skin that needs more revitalization or younger women with significant acne scarring and hyperpigmentation. Also, although the Vi Peel requires significantly less down time than a traditional chemical peel, keep in mind that you might need more down time than you are told. I did my major peeling for two days, but my face was absolutely not presentable for considerably longer than I was told and I also had some secondary peeling for about a week after most of my skin had peeled. At my follow-up appointment one month after my peel, my dermatologist told me one of her patients with very sensitive skin peeled for 10 days.
This foundation did not work for me at all. No matter how hard I tried, I could not get the foundation to blend into my skin. I tried my BeautyBlender sponge and several foundation brushes. Nothing worked. The foundation settled into my pores and stayed on top of my skin no matter how much I tried to blend it in. I never got beyond my bathroom since I had to wash the foundation off and start over whenever I tried to wear it so I can't say anything about the finish or if it truly does stay matte throughout the day.
This is a great acetone polish remover and I went through gallons of it before I learned how to make my own version thanks to the Nail Board. I loved Remove + so much because it removes polish so easily yet never dried out my nails, no matter how often I changed my polish. Unfortunately, Remove + is ridiculously expensive and even more expensive if you go through it as much as I do. The Nail Board's recipe for homemade Remove + is 1-2 tablespoons of glycerine for every 200 ml of pure acetone. I use this recipe but I don't measure my ingredients. I buy my acetone in 32 oz. bottles and I dump about half of that into an old 32 oz. Remove + bottle, followed by about 1/4 cup of glycerine and just enough distilled water to blend the acetone and glycerine together. I don't know how much water that is since I never measure but I'm guess it's about a couple of tablespoons. I have gone through gallons of this stuff and I will never go back to paying through the nose for Remove +. Also, I didn't think I minded the fragrance of Remove + but now that I'm using my own fragrance free remover, Remove + seems downright stinky to me and I can't go back to using it.
This is a great little brush. I bought it to apply mineral foundation. For me, this brush has just the right softness and density to apply mineral foundation. I also needed a retractable brush that I can pack without either fear of damaging or leaving behind when I travel. The quality is excellent, given that this brush is so cheap. However, I would not call this my HG kabuki brush since I have hundreds of other brushes. I find that I prefer my other brushes for other face powders such as loose powder, blush, and bronzer. This little brush isn't a very good multi-tasking brush, in my opinion. However, if you're on a budget or just don't want to spend a lot of money on a good brush, by all means this is your brush. Keep in mind that it will take a couple days to dry if you want to wash it.
Brows -Christian Dior - Diorshow Brow Styler Ultra-Fine Precision Brow Pencil
pocky 7/14/2012 4:30:00 PM
I have used this pencil since it was first released. It's a lot like Kevyn Aucoin The Pecision Brow Pencil in Brunette. I can't imagine that this pencil will work on everyone, despite Dior's claims that it's a universal color. The color is a neutral taupey brown. I am an NC25 with darkest brown hair, but my brows are very sparse. This pencil is perfect for filling in my brows without that angry Samurai look. The lead is super fine and hard enough that it doesn't break on me all the time the way super fine brow pencils tend to do. The price is outrageous, but I can't seem to find another brow pencil that gives me the same look. I can never find KA anymore and my other go-to brow pencil, MAC Lingering, is a touch warm and so is not something I use everyday. I haven't found anything better.
I have the entire OPI NYC Ballet collection and I love all of them. Care to Danse is no exception. As other dissapointed reviewers have noted, Care to Danse's lovely pale lavendar bottle color does not show up on the nails. It shows up as more of an off white, and it's quite sheer so you're going to need a minimum of three coats. I think this collection could have been whittled down to three colors - peach, white and pink--since there isn't much difference between the colors. Still, this is a lovely polish and it wears really well.