Amazing intense color (caramel/amber) from this one (from DHA and the enhancing agent Erythrulose)! And it lasts *very* long, 4-5 days, with one layer, even with exfoliation and all the stuff that I do to my face. Fades evenly, doesn't break me out. It's basically the same as the Body Natural Glow version, just with less alcohol and in a smaller tube. Best thing, it doesn't stick like most self-tanners do!
Self Tanners -Christian Dior - Dior Bronze Body Self Tanner
rayoflight 1/3/2010 8:11:00 AM
One of the best self tanners I've tried. Goes on very smoothly, dries almost instantly, results in an even and *very* long lasting color. It has a strong scent to it, but not a typical self-tan smell, all Dior Bronze products have a similar scent. Lasting power is impressive, it lasts 5 days or so with one application, and it fades very nicely, without cracking and blotches. The color is very nice caramel/amber, and *very* intense, at least on my skin, probably because Dior uses a combination of DHA and Erythrulose. I tried both the Natural Glow and Shimmering Glow (the one with golden shimmer in it) versions and I love the Natural version, the Shimmering Glow version is a bit messy when the shimmer starts to rub off everywhere, other than the shiny pigment, I can't see any difference between the two products, you can give the Shimmering Glow version a try when you need something tan-enhancing for one evening, when you want radiant skin like Tiiu Kuik and Carmen Kass in the old J'Adore ads where they swim in liquid gold, because Shimmering Glow self-tanner pretty much makes skin look like that. So, this is a all-round great self-tanner cream/lotion, lasts long, color is perfect, doesn't stink, and is very gentle to the skin despite the high alcohol content in it. I highly recommend this one.
Sunscreen -Christian Dior - Dior Bronze Anti aging Sun Creme SPF 30 - Face
rayoflight 1/3/2010 7:51:00 AM
It's not a bad sunscreen, but it's also not perfect, it has TiO2 and Oxybenzone as sunscreen ingredients, Dior doen't state the %, but TiO2 is the second ingredient, so it's almost broadspectum screen. Oxybenzone covers the UVB and UVA-I ranges, TiO2 protects from UVA-I and a bit from UVA-II since Dior uses fairly large TiO2 particles (that way TiO2 is a less effective agains UVB, hence the need for oxybenzone). Texture wise it's a bit sticky cream, but not really bad, doesn't turn greasy, but there is a slight metallic cast from titanium on the skin and it steaks sometimes leaving whitish steaks. Fragrance is on the strong side, probably to cover the sunscreen smell, but all Dior Bronze products have a similar warm scent to them, so I'm not sure about that. Despite the richness and strong fragrance, it doesn't break me out or turn me into a greaseball. The tube it weird tho, the lid can't really be unscrewed, you have to twist it a bit and then it opens to dispense the product. Probably very convenient for beach trips, you can't loose the lid and you don't get sand anywhere.But I wouldn't buy this one again, I want something with full protection range and without Oxybenzone and the white steaks.
Moisturizers -Clinique - Superdefense SPF 25 Age Defense Moisturizer
rayoflight 1/2/2010 11:50:00 AM
It would be a nice moisturizer, but every time I apply it my face stings, turns out I'm sensitive to the sunscreen ingredients in this and I can't use it without discomfort. It doesn't break me out or turn oil slick (normal-dry version), but the sunscreen does leave a slight metallic cast on skin. I hope it works for somebody else, I think it's a nice multitasking product.
Moisturizers -Sisley - Confort Extreme Night Cream
rayoflight 1/2/2010 11:43:00 AM
Very rich, but not overly greasy even for a night cream, absorbs quickly and I wake up with smooth, glowing skin, no dehydration lines (I even tried it around eyes), no dry peeling skin. Fragrance is kinda strong, but not so bad as Intensive Night Cream, and no irritations and breakouts. So this one is great for somebody with dry and/or dehydrated skin, or in winter when the air is dry, cold and the heating wrecks chaos on skin.
Doesn't really clean and leaves hair frizzy with no shine. Even when I double shampoo, hair still feels greasy and messy. Maybe too much conditioner in it, but the bottle says it's for all hair types. So I figure it's not my fault and I didn't buy something thats not supposed for my hair typle and I figure that all shampoos have a primary function - get hair clean. This one fails at that.
First, the Skinceuticals site doesn't state that they use both physical and chemical filters for this sunscreen (5% octinoxate and 5% z-cote (transparent zinc)), from the product description I understood that it has zinc only, but no. Texture wise it's very easy to apply, very smooth and doesn't dry too fast, but it is very white and the whiteness doesn't fully disappear, it makes my yellow toned skin look whitish/pink and almost a shade lighter. It also settles into fine lines around eyes, especially on the upper lid there is a white line every time I apply this sunscreen there. I tried to use less, bet then I doubt the protection power, I already use less than the 1 tbsp recommended for face. Also this sunscreen is a nightmare as make up base, concealer and foundation steak like crazy if I try to apply them on top of this sunscreen. On the brighter side, even when I started retinol, this one didn't sting my skin as much as other sunscreens, so it's probably good for sensitive skin and use around eyes. Also there is no overbearing "sunscreen-smell", only a light fresh cream scent and it's not oily and doesn't get my skin greasy (in fact it's a bit drying, so I need a separate moisturizer underneath). But I'm not sure about the protection range of this one, octinoxate has a 280-320 nm range, z-cote according to various sources has 380 - 400 nm range, not >700 nm as normal zinc oxide, but the 380 - 400 nm depend one the formulation and Skinceuticals says it's broad-spectrum UVB/UVA block, so I don't have much reason to doubt, it probably is broad-spectrum and I'm just being paranoid.
Not really something special, just a very lightweight moisturizer, has some very good ingredients, but nothing extraordinary. I liked that it absorbs almost instantly and has no strong scent. Doesn't break me out and doesn't get oily/greasy. But I have to use a lot of it every time, sometimes I apply even twice, my skin drinks it all up. I use it as a in-between step between serum and my actual moisturizer, this one is not nearly strong enough alone. So I could easily live without it.
Moisturizers -La Prairie - ADVANCED MARINE BIOLOGY DAY CREAM SPF 20
rayoflight 12/19/2009 4:04:00 PM
The SA recommended this moisturizer as I was searching for something with SPF in it. But this thing is gross, it smells like rotten oil or something (it's normal, I was assured by the SA), and on skin it looks greasy, it does absorb a little but then the UV filters still leave a metallic cast that exaggerates the slight sheen this cream gives to skin. It would be ok for a night cream, but not for a day cream. The Anti-Aging Emulsion was way better with higher SPF and intensely moisturizing. This one is just average.
Lip Treatments -Clarins - Moisture Replenishing Lip Balm
rayoflight 12/19/2009 3:55:00 PM
This is a review for the Moisture Replenishing Lip Balm with Rose Wax (the blue tube). I really like this one, it's full of emollients and works even in hardcore winter conditions (-20°C, wind, heating), so it makes this one a HG. I do like the slight rose tint it gives to lips and the line filling effect is nice to, tho only temporal. I'm not sure about the long therm collagen boosting benefits, I've been using it since August/September, but I can't really say that there is any change. The only things I dislike are: it tends to bleed over lip line sometimes and the smell is grossly chemical flowery. Otherwise it works just as well as Sisley Lip Balm, but this one is cheaper (although I have reapply the Clarins one more often). I just wish it had a SFP/PA.
Lip Treatments -Ren - Biomimetic Perfect Lip Honey
rayoflight 12/19/2009 3:43:00 PM
A rather average shiny lip balm, but smells/tastes great (like mild citrus/orange water- the scent is really unnoticeable). Did provide enough moisture during summer, but in autumn/winer it's not strong enough. It does have a nice smoothing action, but thats due to all the waxes and plant proteins (I think they also give the light honey color to it, there are no colors in it). Texture wise it's tricky, when the tube is cold, it's hard to get anything out, when I keep in my jeans pocket, it becomes almost liquid and sometimes too much flows out, so it's far from a 5 star perfect. Also, this lip balm tends to migrate over lip line and then it did irritate skin around lips, probably because of the essential oils, they are responsible for the slight plumping effect by triggering a local reaction. As long as it stayed on lips, it was fine, when it slipped over lip contour - redness, irritation, peeling. So, I went through 2 tubes, but I'm not getting this one again, it lacks proper hardcore moisturizing strengths, no SPF/PA, and it's irritating. And I'm not sure, but I think I get more breakout around lips when I constantly use this one.
It's nice and very light, despite the gross spice and leather smell. There is a whiteish tint to it and it makes skin appear lighter/brighter, on medium/dark skins it might look white, but pale complexions should be fine. It adds a bit moisture to the skin but should not be used around eyes due to the high alcohol content. Major drawback - it's not broad spectrum. The only filter is TiO2 and it doesn't protect fully from aging UVA rays, and unlike the SPF40/PPA++ version, this lists only SPF, no PPA factor. And some research shows that TiO2 isn't photostable. So in the end it's less then perfect despite the fact that it's more or less "cosmetically elegant", it's not a real sunscreen, the only thing it does is protect from sunburn, not aging.
I thought it would work fine for me, but this refiner does absolutely nothing for my few flakies around the nose and it dries skin out incredibly. I'm used to heavy physical exfoliators like Estee Lauder Micro-D, but none of them leave my skin as dry and uncomfortable as this simple refiner form Clarins. It's weird, but none of Clarins products seem to work for my skin.
Incredibly average moisturizer, and a bit irritating. With a weird spicy-leathery scent that all Clarins Men products seem to have. All it does is moisturize a bit, no tightened pores, no soothed skin (in fact it irritated my skin a bit) and certainly no firmer skin. I still needed a serum underneath to feel comfortable with my skin and I don't have dry or extremely dehydrated skin, one moisturizer is usually enough. But my skin tends to disagree with every Clarins product that I try, nothing from their lines works for me.
I tried a tester of this. It's not moisturizing at all, this serum is greasy oil that sits on top of skin and does nothing. After I was my face it becomes just as dry as before the Clarins serum (and I used Clarins Men Moisture Balm on top of that). Normally there is some lasting improvement, like Estee Lauder ANR leaves skin soft and moisturized even after it's washed of. This one is terribly underperforming product from Clarins, it has a greasy texture that doesn't go away, it gets even greasier as the day goes on, and it doesn't really moisturize.