Lip Treatments -eos - Smooth Sphere Organic Lip Balm in Honeysuckle Honeydew
ShiverWithAntici 11/8/2011 12:53:00 PM
Admittedly, I'm a sucker for the adorable, albeit quite gimmicky packaging, but having seen this product all over the internet and reading many rave reviews, I figured I might as well try it. The smooth spheres are just OKAY for me. I'm giving this product 3 lippies for the use of organic ingredients, the lovely smells, flavors, and the very reasonable price. Unfortunately, I don't find the formula to be particularly moisturizing or long-lasting. My lips feel smooth when I have it on, but once it wears off, they actually feel very dried out. It's a cute product and I'd use it if I had to, but for a cheap, go-to lip balm, I'll stick with Burt's Bees, which is slightly cheaper anyway.
Lip Gloss -Bare Escentuals - Buxom Lips Lip Gloss in Krystal
ShiverWithAntici 11/8/2011 2:42:00 AM
As a lip gloss fanatic, I can proudly say that I LOVE this product! I might like it even better than the MAC clear lipglass, and it could possibly be my HG of lip glosses. It's long-lasting, smells great, gives beautiful shine, and leaves your lips all tingly and looking super sexy. It feels minty without actually smelling like it (I like mint, but am kind of sick of it due to all of the Burt's Bees lip balm I've been using recently). And of course, it comes in a large variety of beautiful colors, but clear is my go-to. I also like the brush applicator instead of a sponge-tip - I find application to be more pleasant and precise that way. I wouldn't call the formula "non-sticky", but I personally like that. I prefer sticky glosses partially because they provide better staying power, but I realize that they're not going to be for everyone. While my lips do look a bit plumper while wearing this gloss (mainly because it reflects light), I didn't buy it for its lip plumping properties and wouldn't suggest relying on it for that purpose. It's not going to give you a new set of lips, but will help make the lips you have look and feel as sexy as possible! However, this product does have its drawbacks. I really resent the price and the deceptive packaging. The layers of plastic around the tube create an optical illusion which makes it appear as though the tube contains more product than it actually does, which is sneaky, and means I go through this really quickly. The price tag is extremely hefty for a mere 0.15 oz of lip gloss, and the fact the it comes in a hard, plastic tube makes it more difficult to get out all of that measly 0.15 oz. I still LOVE this product, but save it for special occasions.
Moisturizers -Unlisted Brand - live-live Bee Yummy skin food
ShiverWithAntici 11/7/2011 7:19:00 PM
I'm not one of those people who has tried "literally every moisturizer out there", although I have tried several. I purchased this product, not because everything else had completely failed me, but because of the organic, raw ingredients list, the glowing reviews on YouTube, and my curiosity. I have been using this (along with the eye & lip cream) twice a day for a little over a month now, and I can honestly say that my skin has not looked this healthy on a consistent basis in several years! I have normal/combination/dry/sensitive/acne-prone skin (yeah, loads of fun), and this product does an excellent job of managing all of my issues and bringing everything into balance. It's gentle, moisturizes where I need moisture without making my T-zone greasy, and my acne finally seems to be under control. I still get the occasional breakout, but they are MUCH less frequent, severe, and heal so much faster while using this. I'm still young, and I finally feel like that is reflected in the appearance of my skin. My skin not only feels soft and healthy, but LOOKS that way. I was concerned that it wasn't going to be hydrating enough due to the gel-like consistency, but I haven't really had a problem, even moving into the cold winter months. On the days when my skin is drier than usual, I may dab the eye & lip cream just where I need it. There is actually something to be said for a moisturizer that isn't ultra rich and heavy, as over-moisturizing your skin can interfere with its ability to regulate ITSELF and potentially dry it out even more. So, I like the fact that this product isn't super heavy, and absorbs right into the skin, which makes me feel like it's actually nourishing and improving the health of my skin, not JUST moisturizing it. I also LOVE the slightly sweet, natural smell, and find it to be calming. This past weekend, I went to visit my uncle, whom I hadn't seen in months. One of the first things he said to me was, "You look great and your skin looks INCREDIBLE!" So yeah, I'm sold, and will continue to use this until it either loses its efficacy, or I find something significantly better. **Update** After almost two months, I have stopped using this product. My skin seemed to love this stuff and DID look amazing for about the first month, but it seems that over the past few weeks, my skin has gotten progressively worse - blotchy, ruddy, with breakouts, and extremely clogged pores all over my face. I was looking in the mirror this evening after washing my face and the blackheads on my nose were so pronounced, that I resorted to extracting them with my fingers, which I NEVER do, but I just couldn't stand it anymore. While I'm not certain that this product is the cause, it is the most LIKELY, and after reading some other reviews on here, I'm not taking chances. It have also noticed from the beginning that it makes my skin a little bit red, itchy, and tacky, which I stupidly ignored for a while and assumed was just the nature of a completely natural skincare product. Simply put, my skin looks like crap, and I take that to mean that it's not doing what it's supposed to do. It's far too pricey for my skin to be looking like this. I really hope my complexion goes back to normal. Reading some of these reviews really scared me. My advice to people who have just started using this would be to proceed at your own risk and monitor your skin very closely!
Treatments -Unlisted Brand - Live-Live Bee Yummy Eye & Lip Cream
ShiverWithAntici 11/7/2011 6:18:00 PM
The safety and naturalness of the products I put on my skin are very important to me, but I also want them to work. Suffice it to say, I LOVE this stuff! My eye area can get really dry with visible smile lines because of dryness, and this completely takes care of that. The consistency is very thick, which is good for me. My entire eye area feels so comfortable and hydrated. I may not be the best test subject, as I don't currently have deep wrinkles, puffiness, or severe dark circles, but for my needs, I'm very happy with this product. I also use it to condition my lashes and eyebrows, and dab a little bit on my cheeks if they get dry, which leaves me with a very healthy, natural, dewy glow. It is nice on the lips too, but I don't often use it as lip balm. Added bonus: I actually love the smell. It smells like Christmas trees (from the balsam fir needles), and is really soothing to me. It's not super strong though, so everyone isn't going to smell it when you walk by. This is a great multipurpose product! **Update** I stopped using this because I think it was giving me milia, although that might have been because I was using too much of it around my eyes. I'd still use it as a lip treatment, and on my eyebrows, but not on my eyelashes because it was making my eyes burn.
Okay, so this perfume has shown me how much I don't care for jasmine (at least not strong jasmine) and how much I LOVE tonka! Tonka and vanilla are really a match made in heaven. When I first spray this perfume, the jasmine is overpowering and it smells slightly too old-ladyish for me. Once it dries down after a few minutes, and I'm left with this soft, sweet, powdery combination of vanilla and tonka with a hint of jasmine, I like it! It's very musky and sexy, and reminds me a bit of one scent that I smelled on this woman several years ago that drove me crazy! It's too bad I never asked her what it was. But I digress. For a perfume I was prepared to hate because of all the "It smells just like cat urine!!" reviews, I am pleasantly surprised. Unfortunately, I don't find the staying power to be all that great, especially for such a pricey item. I'm not sure if I'd repurchase this.
As others have stated, this product is very gimmicky. It's fun, don't get me wrong, but a little difficult to use, as it takes work to break up the chunks and build a good lather. Sometimes small chunks of it will slip away from you and land on the shower floor, which is rather annoying and wasteful. Like the You Snap The Whip Body Butter, this smells of root beer with a splash of cherry soda, in my opinion, but doesn't have the mineral overtone that the body butter has. The scent is much more pure. Unfortunately, the scent isn't very strong (I have found this to be the case with every LUSH shower gel that I've tried). I realize that highly fragrant shower products are not ideal for my skin, but when I'm in the mood for something fragrant, I really want to be able to smell it, otherwise, what's the point?? I'm currently living in a dorm and there are shower stalls right next to each other. I was taking a shower this evening and could smell this product as I was using it. But as soon as another girl began taking a shower, I couldn't smell this AT ALL! The fragrance was completely overtaken by whatever coconutty body wash she was using, which, as it happens, smelled good, and I will bet cost her less money. Not surprisingly, the scent doesn't linger on your skin. So yeah, I can't say I'm impressed. I'm glad I only purchased a small container of this. I haven't tried putting it in the freezer yet, which sounds like a nice idea for the summer. I might repurchase this or another shower jelly at that time and give it a try, since the price of the shower jellies is slightly more reasonable than the shower gels. Overall, I don't recommend this product too highly.
I'll start off by saying that I like the idea of a massage bar and really enjoyed the feeling of this product. It glides on beautifully, leaves my skin feeling silky, and also leaves a nice sheen (although I could understand how many people would find this too greasy). Personally, my skin gets very dry, so I appreciate the extra moisture, and don't mind if a product doesn't quite sink into my skin completely. The problem is, I'm really not fond of the smell. This smells mainly of cocoa butter (which admittedly, I'm not a huge fan of anyway, so silly purchase on my part), with an herbaceous overtone, and a sharp citrus tang. I could tolerate just cocoa butter (even though I don't love the smell of it), or just herbs and citrus, but not all of those elements together. It's just too acrid and mildly sickening to me. But oddly enough, I still don't hate it, and even like it at times. Weird. Also, after awhile, it mellows out on the skin and just smells like lavender with a hint of citrus, which is very calming. But I can get that same effect with a lavender body lotion or butter that doesn't require a "mellow out" period. Overall, I was very disappointed in this product and will not be repurchasing it.
I can see how this would make a great everyday face brush, but I'm not sure if it's a thorough exfoliator, as the bristles are very soft and fine at the ends. I bought it because I have pretty sensitive skin and was in the market for a very soft brush. Well, this definitely fits that bill, but maybe a little TOO well, to the point where I feel like I'm completely sacrificing exfoliation for gentleness. Maybe this is doing its job perfectly well and I'm just used to really harsh brushes and scrubs that are not good for the skin. Although, VERY gently massaging the face with a harsh scrub and barely applying pressure is better for the skin and more effective than using a ton of pressure with a gentle brush in order to exfoliate (which is what I have to do with this). I will say that it's smaller than it appears in photos, which is actually quite convenient for navigating the planes of your face. So, if you're looking for an über gentle face brush, give this a try.
Eye Primer -Urban Decay - Eyeshadow Primer Potion - Original (UDPP)
ShiverWithAntici 11/3/2011 7:19:00 PM
I want to start off by mentioning that this (the Original shade) is the first and only eyeshadow primer I have ever used, so I have no frame of reference whatsoever. That being said, this stuff is awesome! If you gave this to someone who had no idea what it was supposed to do and asked them at the end of the day if their eyeshadow had creased or faded, they'd tell you, "NO WAY!!!" I can't believe how long I wore eyeshadow without a primer, had it crease, and thought it was just the nature of wearing eyeshadow and something you had to deal with. No more, never again! This makes whatever eyeshadow I apply appear more vibrant, and my makeup stays put until I decide to take it off. Period. I have not tested it for 24+ hours, but I doubt I'd have a problem. I agree that the packaging is not ideal, as it makes it difficult to get out all of the product, but Urban Decay did come out with the more convenient squeeze-tube. And yeah, it's pricey, but a little goes a long way, and it eliminates the need to touch up your eyeshadow throughout the day. My only real complaints about this product are that it makes my eye area look a bit too dry and seems to emphasize any crepiness (my lids aren't super oily). It also makes eyeshadows more difficult to blend (I don't know if this is the case for all primers). I have never tried any of the paint pots by MAC, but perhaps one of those would be more suitable for me. I think this is a very good product, but I'd still like to try other primers. Also, there are comparable products out there that cost a lot less.
Toners -Alba Botanica - Hawaiian Hibiscus Facial Toner
ShiverWithAntici 11/3/2011 6:32:00 PM
This has been my go-to toner for the past year now. I try to go for the gentlest, most natural, yet most effective products available that aren't astronomically expensive. The first time I purchased this, I was in a drugstore in Key West, FL, in a rush, and just needed a basic toner, not giving the purchase much thought. When I'm in a drugstore, "Alcohol free" and "Paraben free" are my only real requirements for a toner (and a tall order at that). However, I've been rather pleased with it! Undoubtedly, one of the highest quality drugstore buys out there, but still a good product in its own right. It has a natural, semi-sweet smell (which I happen to love!), but is not overpowering. Most importantly, it is effective at removing residue, seems to help prevent breakouts, and seems to even out my skin tone and texture a bit. My only complaint is that it can be too drying for me at times (which, of course, is partially the fault of whatever cleanser I may be using prior to this). I stopped using this product for a few weeks and replaced it with the 100% Pure Organic Rose Hydrosol Facial Mist for sensitive and dehydrated skin (which seemed to do absolutely NOTHING for my skin), and noticed that my blackheads started becoming more noticeable and my skin didn't feel as clean and soft. I decided to check out the 100% Pure website again in search of a more effective toner. Obsessively reading the ingredients list for every toner on the site, and then the ingredients list for this toner, I noticed they were remarkably similar, so I opted to buy another bottle of this toner instead of spending more money for less product that's going to do pretty much the same thing. I will continue to use this until I find something better.
This was the first LUSH shower gel I ever tried and overall, I like it, but am not exceedingly impressed. The added olive oil for extra skin conditioning is a good idea that I've never seen in a shower gel before. The product is runny, but creates a decent lather, feels silky on my skin, and doesn't leave it completely parched. However, I like the smell a lot more inside of the bottle. When it hits the water, it takes on a bit of a cigarette-smokey, wet dog quality, which isn't overwhelming, but not fresh enough for me. A lot of people tout the fragrance as being so original, but I don't find that at all. It might be uncommon for a shower gel, but it reminds me of cheap men's cologne (if you don't like very masculine scents, this product is probably not for you). If you're using this just for the fragrance (as are a few of the reviewers I watched on YouTube), I'm sure you could find an AXE shower gel that smells better and lingers on the skin longer, for a lot less money.
I don't get the INSANE amount of hype over this product. Sure, it looks pretty, if not a bit like glittery Pepto-Bismol. The glitter, by the way, only serves an aesthetic purpose and doesn't remain on your skin after rinsing (which I suppose is a good thing, as it could potentially irritate the skin). The smell is what people generally rave about, and yes, I do LIKE the smell - to me, it smells JUST like Swedish Fish candy and classic Carefree gum, with a chemically undertone. So yeah, it's a juicy, fun, girly smell. We're not talking sophisticated here, AT ALL. In fact, it kind of smells cheap. In addition to the candy scent, there's also something about the formulation that reminds me of a soap you'd buy at a dollar store. It isn't sickeningly sweet though, so that's a plus. As far as the other factors are concerned, it's really just your average shower gel, but runnier (which a few LUSH shower gels seem to be). I also cannot believe I spent so much money for only 3.3 fl. oz. of shower gel (major impulse buy, but I was curious due to all of the hype). For less than a dollar more, you can get literally 5X the amount of a lovely Dr. Bronner's liquid castile soap that is organic, free of added chemicals, artificial colors, etc., smells better, lathers better, goes A LOT further, and gets the job done far better than Snow Fairy. I just don't see the point of this and could not justify repurchasing it.
This soap has very mixed reviews, and I can understand why: the smell is not going to be for everyone. However, I am amongst those who really enjoy it! I received a sample of this in my latest LUSH order, and was pleasantly surprised! I used it to wash my hands, and was instantly reminded of those clove-studded orange pomanders that my relatives used to hang all over their houses during the autumn and winter months. Everything else about this soap is just average (hence the subtraction of two lippies), but being the sucker for nostalgia that I am, I would purchase this JUST to have that smell around during the autumn and winter months.
Yes, it's expensive, yes, it's sticky, but boy do my lips look amazing while wearing it, a little goes a long way, and it stays put longer than any lip gloss I've ever tried! The thing is, I actually like how thick it is (I am a fan of honey-thick glosses) and ENJOY the sticky feel on my lips. I only subtracted one lippie because my long hair will invariably get stuck to my lips when the wind blows, and that part is annoying. From what I've read, it is also a versatile product, although I haven't experimented with other uses. I highly recommend this product to anyone who wants their lips to look super glossy and yummy just for photos or people who love thick, sticky glosses.
I am a fan of Badger products, really respect the company, and yes, find the packaging to be charming and adorable, but I just don't like their sunscreen. I originally purchased this solely because of the safety rating from the EWG. I have only tried the unscented version and used it regularly for a few months. That was a little over a year ago. I took a break from this product, then returned to it a few days ago and I'm very dissatisfied. I guess I was more broken out a year ago anyway and/or not paying as close attention to my skin as I am now, but after using this these past few days, I developed several pimples, including one very large, painful eruption on my neck. Now, to be fair, my breakouts could POSSIBLY be due to me changing around my other skincare products a bit recently, including my having stopped using my previous toner for a few weeks (which was probably helping to PREVENT my breakouts). But these breakouts just seem too sudden, so I think it was due to the sunscreen (I did a little research and found that one of the ingredients, cocoa butter, is highly comedogenic). Even if I hadn't broken out, the other reviews are spot on: this product is a misery to apply, doesn't blend well (it takes forever to make it look semi-decent and not completely ghostlike), feels so heavy and greasy (even on the days when my face is especially dry), it separates, and is just generally unpleasant to use. I really would not recommend this product to anyone, especially those with acne-prone skin. **Update: I need to learn not to review products before trying a few other comparable ones. Compared to Beyond Coastal and Desert Essence mineral sunblocks, this product isn't bad AT ALL. This blends in much more easily than the others and doesn't leave as much of a blotchy white cast on my face (maybe the difference is the titanium dioxide in the two others that I tried and/or something about their formulations). I'm still not certain that this is what broke me out, so until I find something better, I'm going to use this.