Terrible for clumping, smudging, getting all over my eyelids. Makes my eyes water.
Shampoo -Jason Natural Cosmetics - extra rich Natural Sea Kelp conditioner
CombatWombat 6/19/2008 9:23:00 PM
Great daily conditioner. I already gushed about this product in a review for the matching shampoo, so in the interest of sparing the innocent from my over-the-top prose, I'll just say this: best conditioner I've tried.
Shampoo -Jason Natural Cosmetics - Natural Sea Kelp Shampoo
CombatWombat 6/19/2008 9:20:00 PM
I am notoriously unfaithful to my hair products. My shower is a rolling, slippery mess of bottles used for a month and then cast off in boredom or disappointment, and I'm constantly being lured in by aspirational packaging and nice scents. Jason Sea Kelp Shampoo and Conditioner are not glamorous; they come in ugly plastic bricks and smell questionable out of the bottle. In short, they're frumpy. But zounds, they work! This combination handles the daily shower with gentle ease, cleansing my roots and moisturising my tips without a whisper of detergent, sharp perfumes or waxy buildup. To be honest, I have great hair to start with, and this shampoo and conditioner combo isn't exactly a miracle worker. However, if you're looking for the perfect solution for your daily wash, give Jason Sea Kelp a try. These are the only hair care products I would consistently repurchase.
Shampoo -Frederic Fekkai - Summer Hair - Wash and Wear
CombatWombat 6/19/2008 9:09:00 PM
Not worth the time. I know this product isn't really a dry shampoo, but is intended to "refresh" dirty hair. I tried this on dirty hair and rubbed, dirty hair and sun-dried, dirty hair and blow-dried, clean hair, and my hair still came out looking worse for it. What was once passable suddenly was wanting for a wash, which defeats the purpose of the product entirely. Had to jump through several burning hoops to return it to BBW. Smells cute.
Very good general moisturizer, a natural alternative to Eucerin cream, which I also love. This is a rich, oil-based cream that takes a little bit of work to rub into the skin, but feels great on dry, itchy patches like elbows and between fingers. I've used it on my face a couple of times to calm raw patches, and it's done a great job of clearing up dry and irritated areas, but I would not use this as an everyday product on my face. I appreciate the metal tube, and I'm still working through the eensy sample sized tube I bought at Target, so clearly I'll get a lot of mileage out of it. Hooray Weleda!
Skincare - Body -Unlisted Brand - Adidas 24hr Control Absorbent-Deo
CombatWombat 5/13/2008 7:33:00 PM
I am extraordinarily picky about deodorants, and so far this is my favorite. It does a much better than average job of keeping me dry and inoffensive and, unlike most women's "invisible" deodorants, this one does not make a mess of my clothes or turn into a chalky mess on my skin. I couldn't even count the number of shirts I've had ruined by aluminum-containing products (greasy stains and gummy seams). Finding an effective, aluminum-free deodorant is pretty tough, especially if you aren't willing to go about your day smelling like Right Guard, but Adidas delivers. I smell fine, not spanking fresh, but fine after a 16 hour day wearing this, and the fitness fresh scent is very agreeable. Am I the only one who thinks that 99.9% of women's deodorants smell like portable toilets? My only complaints are that this product can be quite hard to find, and that I do have to keep a stick of Dove around to use after shaving, as this is a little sharp on raw skin. For the record, the men's Ice Dive version of the same product is also quite good, but has a stronger fragrance. Who knew there could be a deodorant out there that didn't make me miserable?
Moisturizers -Eucerin - Redness Relief Soothing Night Creme
CombatWombat 5/12/2008 1:03:00 PM
I've been very satisfied with this product. All through high school, I had normal, dirty-face teenage acne. Then, sometime in college my acne morphed into the deep, scarring, painful adult variety, leading me to seek out prescription help. I started using retinol and my skin became very irritated, so I gave this a try. This cream is thick and rich but spreads very easily and doesn't feel like it's smothering me. I've never once broken out from a Eucerin product, and if I apply this to an irritated patch of skin at night, it will calm down considerably by morning. Since I don't really have rosacea I can't comment on its actual efficacy, but for general redness, irritation and chemically sensitized skin, it seems to work well. My only warning: if you apply this cream to extremely raw skin (especially over retin-A), it will sting like you wouldn't believe. However, I'd do it anyway, and the sting would subside, and by morning the redness and peeling would be pretty much gone. One pot has lasted about a year with inconsistent use, which makes the $15 price tag a bit more agreeable. I'm moving around the world soon and space in my luggage is at a premium, but I will be bringing a new pot of this excellent moisturizer with me.
I pounced on this after one spritz because it was the first perfume I'd ever come across that actually lasted on my skin (not including my juvenile collection of perfume oils from TBS). Turns out, I didn't know what the difference between an EDP and an EDT was, and had been expecting EDTs and colognes to last and last. This is a very warm, sweet, comforting scent that makes me think of cuddling up in a cashmere (Burberry?) scarf while snow falls outside. The lasting power and sillage are quite good, and the scent is pretty much linear, and I really can't distinguish any particular fragrance notes here. I do love the drydown of Classic and Brit, which is fantastically rich without being heavy. The bottle here is also gorgeous - it's not terribly interesting, but I keep it out in sight simply because I love how it looks. Ultimately, however, I found that I prefer Brit, and I will probably not repurchase Classic when I run out, which at the speed I'm going will be in about fifteen years. You can bet I'll be keeping the bottle, though. Bottom line: a bland but extremely friendly scent, not sexy or especially pretty.
Styling Products -Garnier - Surf Hair Texture Paste
CombatWombat 4/22/2008 4:52:00 PM
Yuck! I've tried to make this work several times, wet hair, dry hair, blow-dried, doesn't seem to make a difference. I just wind up with sticky clumps of hair. Perhaps you need more natural texture to work with than I have? I grabbed this from a free pile in my dorm, so no complaints about the price, but for mostly straight, shoulder-length hair I wouldn't recommend. I will, however, keep it in the back of my closet in case I cut my hair into a pixie again, in which case I imagine that this might work MUCH better. Benefit of the doubt and all.
I rarely wear my hair down for several reasons, one of them being that my ends tend to look very choppy and frazzled. I have fine hair, but a lot of it, and this product does a pretty good job of adding definition to my ends. Whether it's better than any other hair serums I really couldn't say, as this is the first I've tried. I'm satisfied with its performance but not wowed, and although it's easy enough to find, it's pretty pricey. No real difference in shine, but it hasn't dried out or damaged my hair either. The deal breaker for me is its scent - this product smells very, VERY strongly of hair salon (product and burnt hair, you know the smell), and that's a smell I just can't cope with. I'll use this up, but won't repurchase. A note: this definitely works best on dried hair, and is not a substitute for conditioner (sadly).
Oh, if only my partner would actually wear this! Eau Sauvage is the most optimistic-smelling scent I have ever encountered. All it takes is one spritz (or splash from a decant, in my case) to feel that everything is suddenly okay, that it always was okay, that summer is coming soon, the water will warm, the local sports team will finally triumph and this year I'll actually get a tan. While I wouldn't call this a comfort scent, I find it very reassuring - it is old-fashioned in the best possible sense, and reminds me of my grandpa's house on the Cape, juniper bushes and sandy feet. That said, Eau Sauvage is also very sexy, and while I'd happily wear it myself, I really would prefer that N wear it. Sadly, he only applies the ES I gave him when he goes out with his labmates, and breaks out his jealously-guarded Burt's Bees Bay Rum whenever I visit. In classic clueless male form, he thinks he's doing me a favor. Everyone should have a significant other who wears Eau Sauvage. As an odd little side note, this scent to me evokes the early '60's. Now, I will freely admit that I did not live through the '60's, and no, I don't even remember the '80's. But the sense of optimism in the face of challenge, of polite dissonance, of impending and massive change on the horizon speak to me. I've now seen several comparisons drawn between this period and the current national sentiment, which are only heightened by the much-evoked Camelot-Obama connection. Yes, it's a stretch, but surely I'm not the only one who finds Eau Sauvage subtly and surprisingly relevant?
I wear this scent when I wish to convey a grown-up image - nobody with a curfew could get away with wearing PC. This is a powerful, piney, vegetal green that absolutely oozes confidence, grace and class. This is not a "mature" scent, like Youth Dew or White Linen (death by aldehydes!), but rather perfectly suited to a woman at the top of her game. I wear this early, in my mid-20's, hoping that I'll grow into it soon, which is more a matter of confidence than age. I don't feel pretty in this scent, but damn, I think I could take over the world. This is the stuff that signature scents are made of. The bottle is dull and inoffensive, but I'm hoarding the gorgeous blue, white and gold box that it came in. I use the pure fragrance spray, which I thought was quite well-priced - yet another thing Estee Lauder has going in its favor. An interesting note: many hours after applying PC, I'll catch a whiff of it and think how great the drydown would smell with a pretty, white flower sitting on top. Wearing the original Private Collection has made me appreciate EL's Tuberose Gardenia even more.
Scrubs -Kiss My Face - oatmeal and honey facial scrub
CombatWombat 4/5/2008 2:45:00 PM
My favorite scrub so far. The consistency is thick, more of a mud or a paste than a cream, and I get a more effective scrub with this than with jojoba-based products like REN, but less scratchiness than St. Ives or Suki. I do occasionally use it as a mask as well, and while it doesn't harden, my face glows after washing it off - not an easy feat with my angry skin. It has parabens and propylene glycol, so it's probably not suitable for the wicked sensitive or chemically neurotic, but overall it's quite a good product for an agreeable price.
I'm fairly disappointed with this product. I didn't get any noteworthy results, and no matter how cautious I am I always wind up with scrub up my nose, in my mouth and in my eyes. Not tough enough for the thick skin on my nose and forehead, but makes my cheeks burn. It's a lot to pay for a mediocre scrub, but there's definitely more at work than just the grit - my face tingles for a while after using this. The base is nice - not gooey, but very hard to wash off - gets into my hair and won't come out. All in all, I get a better scrub and glow from a hot washcloth.