This mask worked really well for my combo/oily skin. My only caveat is that some of the dye is left behind no matter how many times I rinse my face. I remedied this by rinsing a few times and then using an alcohol-free toner soaked cotton ball to get any residual dye. It worked like a charm and my skin looked fabulous. To prevent mold, I recommend keeping Astara masks in the fridge. They contain a lot of natural ingredients and no preservatives so they can spoil pretty quickly.
Concealers -Elizabeth Arden - Flawless finish concealer
rainy_days 3/5/2004 12:55:00 AM
I bought this on a whim when I went to Ulta. I was using Paula Dorf's concealer and was happy with it but wanted a change. I'm so glad I picked this up! The EA concealer is wonderful. It covers my dark circles and a couple of broken capillaries around my nose without settling into fine lines or pores. It has such a nice consistency and gives a matte finish but it isn't dry. The concealer lasts all day and hasn't caused any breakouts. I will definitely be repurchasing this again.
This is one of my favorite mascaras. It gives my lashes volume and length and it doesn't flake. My only caveat is that I have to wipe the wand off on a tissue every time I use it because there is too much mascara and it would make a mess of my lashes. Once I wipe the brush and apply the mascara, my lashes look perfect.
One of the few products from my AV kit that I use and love. This is a wonderful eyeshadow that would probably work for most people. Really makes my eyes stand out and is nicely pigmented and shimmery without being glittery. Definitely a keeper.
Foundations -Alexis Vogel - Creme Foundation - Light
rainy_days 1/31/2004 12:42:00 PM
I don't normally use this as foundation since it's a bit heavy for my skin but I've found that the lightest color works very well as a concealer! I use a bit under my eyes and my dark circles disappear. I also use it to conceal a few broken capillaries around my nose and it does a fantastic job. Most of the AV products are crap but this foundation is actually a keeper and I may have to repurchase when I run out. I hate that I have to waste money on the other two colors in the pot, though. They don't match my skintone and are wasted since I cant't use them.
My skin is not truly clean unless I use this toner. I use several different types of cleansers and they all work well but I use this toner after I cleanse and it gets rid of any residual dirt or makeup and very lightly exfoliates my skin by getting rid of dead skin cells on the surface. The result is smooth clean skin that is ready for a treatment product and/or makeup application. I will not be without this toner and have tried more expensive brands but always come back to this since it works so well despite the fact that it's simple and inexpensive.
Annoying spokesperson aside, this fragrance is one of my favorites. I've searched for a truly "clean laundry" type scent for years and this comes close without smelling like fabric softener. When layered with the body lotion the scent lasts a long time. I've gotten so many compliments on this perfume, I don't care who makes it or that the bottle is a bit corny-looking. It smells good on me and so I'll try to forget that I'm giving money to J. Lo when I buy it.
Treatments -Advanced Skin Technology - Green Cream by AST
rainy_days 1/31/2004 12:25:00 PM
Expensive but worth the money. The most effective OTC product on the market, IMO. Green Cream has .6% retinol unlike most OTC retinol products, which contain a maximum of .25% retinol. Works like nothing else to exfoliate skin. I use this several times a week at night and have been pleased with the dramatic results. Just remember to use sunscreen since Green Cream will make skin photosensitive just like Retin-A.
Very effective but gentle 10% benzoyl peroxide product. This is the best BPO product I've ever used. It dries up oil, helps unclog pores, and gets rid of blemishes without drying the heck out of my skin like harsh BPO products. Excellent when used with the 20% smoothing gel. These two products have made my skin clear and smooth.
Excellent but basic sealant that really locks in moisture. I use this over 20% smoothing gel around my eyes and on my neck when my skin is still slightly damp, in order to seal in moisture. It works! My one caveat is that it comes in a jar and I would prefer a tube or pump bottle for sanitary reasons.
This has been reformulated since the last time I used it and I have to say I'm very pleased with the new version! I always wondered if the PH level was correct on the old formulation because it never really exfoliated my skin and it should have, given the high perecentage of glycolic acid. This new version is WONDERFUL! It exfoliates my skin, cleans out my pores, and gives me a healthy glow. After using this at night, I wake up to fresh new skin that looks as if I just had a facial. I also like the subtle scent of freesia and the fact that the new formula does not "pill up" on my skin, for lack of a better term. Great product and I'm so happy with the results. I will definitely be repurchasing this.
This is my favorite facial exfoliator. It contains tiny round beads that don't tear or irritate my skin and a small amount of benzoyl peroxide in a creamy but non-oily base cleanser. Great when used in conjunction with the facial shampoo.
Excellent cleanser that gently removes all my makeup but doesn't completely strip my skin. It's expensive but an 8 oz. bottle lasts me close to a year when used once a day. I've been using Sage, on and off, since 1999 and their products are top notch quality.
Moisturizers -DDF - Ultra Lite Oil-Free Moisturizing Dew
rainy_days 1/31/2004 12:06:00 PM
Excellent, lightweight, antioxidant packed lotion which is great for normal to oily skin in need of moisture. I use this over Green Cream at night if my skin is dry and it really does a good job of moisturizing my skin without leaving me greasy. Doesn't cause breakouts and has no fragrance.
Lotions/ Creams -A Zaftig Woman - Shea Butter Body Cream
rainy_days 1/31/2004 11:58:00 AM
I've used AZW products for about three years and love the shea butter body lotions! I have many different scents: lemon buko pie, lemon creme, pineapple grapefruit, nectar of the gods, vanilla cream cake, citrus squeeze, raisin cane, etc. and they all smell wonderful and are very moisturizing without being greasy. Hands down, my favorite body products from any store or e-tailer. Very high quality and the scents smell authentic, not like plastic and chemicals, as is the case from a few other e-tailers I've bought from. The customer service is great as well. My orders arrive promptly and with samples every time.