I *heart* South Beach!! Powder/foundation leaves my skin flat, dull and lifeless, so I'm always looking for blush/bronzers that add dimension and glow. South Beach is PERFECT! On my NC20 skin, just the tiniest bit blended from the apples of my cheeks and across my cheek bones adds a beautiful sun-kissed glow. I add touch on my nose, chin, and across my brows (just a touch) and top with a gentle swipe of pink blush on my cheeks (Milani Pink Craze for me) and my skin looks fresh, dewy and naturally gorgeous. I wouldn't call South Beach shimmery per se but it definitely has some light reflecting stuff in there. It can be easily overdone - from perfect and sun-kissed to burnt and orange. I've tried several multiples and so far this is the only one I would repurchase.
Fragrances -Elizabeth Arden - With Love by Hilary Duff
rinnins 10/31/2007 4:41:00 PM
Smells like if you turned warm peach cobbler into perfume. Peachy, warm, brown sugary, with just a hint of musk and florals. My only gripe is the staying power - kind of weak.
A wonderful MUAer sent a sample packet of this in a swap and it sounded interesting so I decided to give it a go. The product is a thick, milky blue with shimmer (yes, shimmer) and has the stickiness and consistency of a peel-off mask. After washing, I spread a thin layer (as the directions indicate), and I probably left it on for about an hour. When dry it had a velvety texture, and when I rinsed it off so did my skin! I have a Clarisonic so I'm pretty well exfoliated, but this took my skin to the next level. It says it's suitable for all skin types, and this product agreed with my schitzophrenic, sometimes greasy, sometimes dry, break-out prone skin. Truly radiant. This provided better results than either the Philosophy or Olay microdelivery peels with NO SCRUBBING. When I rinsed, I did have some patchy peely areas but I followed up with olive oil and looked FANTASTIC. Amazing exfoliation with no burning, itching, or scrubbing? I'm all over it. Turnaround 15-Minute Facial 2.5 oz./65 ml. Jar $34.50
I got a sample vial of this fragrance in swap from a lovely MUAer. I *heart* CSP fragrances and immediately sprayed it. Of course I couldn't stop sniffing my wrists. The smell reminded me of... something... and it took me a few hours to realize what. To me, this smells like a public restroom. More specifically, a urinal cake. Don't ask me how or why, but now that I've made that association, I can't think about wearing this again. It doesn't smell bad - it smells like it's intended to cover up things that smell bad, though.
Misc Beauty Tools -E.L.F. - Mechanical Eyelash Curler
rinnins 10/11/2007 5:04:00 PM
*sigh* After plunking down $15 for my Tarte, a wonderful lady sent me one of these in a swap (because my stupid K-mart carries everything ELF but the curler). Everything I loved about my Tarte is also true of the ELF. Except the price. I even like the grip better. The ONLY thing I'm not WOWED by is the pad. If it were just a tiny bit squishier, this would be the one for me. But for a buck - who can complain? Get one.
I love the smell of this stuff, and I love that it doesn't weigh my hair down. But for $30, this doesn't do anything that impressive. It's great at taming frizz without making my hair look greasy, but it doesn't add a lot of shine or managability. Also, I hate the screw-on cap. The search continues.
Like others have said, this gives the perfect in from the cold, cute as a button, pretty doll pink cheeks. Then I got my hands on Milani Pink Craze, which gives EXACTLY the same results, and up for swaps it went.
My epillator is one of the best things that ever happened to me!!! I have ALWAYS suffered from shaving - razor burn, ingrown hairs - my skin is ridiculously sensitive. Things got much much much better when I used my husband's razor one day - I think they're sharper, and the wire wrapped blades keep me from scraping off the skin on my knee caps. Anyway, I have a pretty high tolerance for pain so when I read rave reviews for the Braun Silk Epil I decided to give it a try. The first time? YOWCH. I highly recommend lots of Advil and a half-glass of wine before taking on that project. The first time is the worst. But once you thin out the forest, each subsequent go with the epilator is easier and much less painful. My process: Advil and/or wine, shower, epillate, lotion (I add a drop of tea tree oil). I'll have that really attractive "plucked chicken" look for about 24 hours. Then I clean up anything that was missed with a quick shave the next day. I epillate/shave once a week, and my legs look and feel great. I'm happy, my hubby's happy, everyone's happy!
Fragrances -Elizabeth Arden - Midnight Fantasy Britney Spears
rinnins 9/10/2007 11:48:00 AM
Looks like Britney's career slide has slid her products right into discount stores - I picked up the 1 oz yesterday at Marshall's for 19.99 USD (the 3.3 oz was 29.99). I'm not a fan of Brit at all, but I loooooooove Fantasy, and Midnight Fantasy is a great blueberry alternative. Smells like a big batch of fresh baked blueberry muffins when first sprayed, but dries down to a creamy vanilla with just a hint of berry. Someone described it as like the blueberry Strawberry Shortcake doll - dead on. I remember wanting to eat my Buttercup doll. Like Fantasy, this version has EXCELLENT staying power. Yummy!!
I had my lashes tinted professionally by an esthetician years ago before a spring break trip to Key West. It's a great way to look "naturally" made-up at the beach or swimming with no worries about raccoon eyes. I picked up a single use dye packet in black from Sally's for about $6 (you can buy a multiple use kit for about $30, but I wanted to try out with a single first). I'm fair and my lashes are brown at the base and blonde at the ends, so dyeing them black has a pretty dramatic "always wearing mascara" effect. The process was much easier and quicker than I imagined, and the results were perfect. You basically prep the area - wash and cover skin with Vaseline, then apply two solutions, wait to dry, wash, and you're done. You need to be extremely careful using this kit to keep the dye off your skin and out of your eyes. Vaseline helps a lot. I was lucky to keep the product off my eye area, but I did dye a couple fingers. :-) The results are exactly what I was looking for - I'm definitely going back for the big kit. :-) I only used on my lashes - I'm sure this would work well for brows, too, but would be much more difficult to keep the product off the skin and get an even application.
I picked up one of these tiny tube glosses from Sally's for 89 cents. I grabbed "Knockout," which is a pale, glittery, opalescent pink. It has a slightly sickening cake-batter scent. Texture is great - not too thick, not runny. Staying power is ok. The glitter in this particular shade is a little much - you can actually see square chunks of glitter, like it was swept up off the floor of a preschool art class. I wouldn't be upset in the least if I lost this teeny tube. Even at 99 cents a pop, these aren't good enough to repurchase.
Eyeliner -L'Oreal - HIP Color Truth Cream Eyeliner in Eggplant
rinnins 9/3/2007 10:39:00 PM
GREAT DS LINER!! I love this purple color, too! Excellent pigmentation - just one stroke and you're set to go. The purple is VERY dark and subtle. When I first tried these out, I used the brown on one eye and the eggplant on the other. Both looked fabulous, and from a distance you couldn't really tell the difference, except the eye lined in purple *popped* just a little more. The pot is about 2x the size of a MAC fluidline and will last FOREVER. The surface of the pot is also much wider, making getting at the product easier. After a day of wear, my bottom lid will smudge a little, but that happens for me with most liners. Overall this does have great staying power, but it's not perfect. For the price, quantity and quality of product, I would definitely repurchase.
I get the same results from this product as Bumble & Bumble white hair powder for about 1/3 the cost. This is great for any day you just plain don't feel like washing your hair. I usually use it to keep from looking greasy on lazy Saturdays. :-) The main difference between this product and the B&B is the fragrance - the B&B has no scent. I bought this in tropical, which is a mildly annoying pina colada scent (not offensive, just annoying). This has a better texture than the B&B - no gritty feel. I got for $6 at Sally's and though I don't use very often will probably repurchase.
Misc Beauty Tools -Tarte - Picture Perfect Eyelash Curler
rinnins 8/25/2007 10:59:00 PM
THIS is the eyelash curler I've been looking for!!!!! After yeeeeeeears with my beloved pink and purple plastic Revlon (and as many years of "L" shaped lashes), I went for broke and upgraded to a Shu. But the Shu was only "eh." I've been faithful for a year because I assumed it doesn't get any better. Oh but it DOES! Perfect, effortless, idiot proof curl - that is what my brand spankin new Tarte Picture Perfect Eyelash Curler delivers. It's got this springy mechansm so you barely have to press at all to get a PERFECT CURL in one squeeze! And it holds! Plus it's CUTE! Yes, it can pinch. That is what eyelash curlers do - they pinch your lashes into shape. I could pinch myself with my Shu too if I wasn't careful. So be careful. My only only only complaint is the grip, while comfortable, makes maneuvering tricky - it's not very stable (you have to press it with your fingers to hold as opposed to other metal curlers that loop around and rest on your fingers). But even so my lashes are still beautiful!! I can only imagine what they'd look like if I could hold it steadier! BTW - I think it's interesting how mixed the reviews for this are - from HG to trash... guess it's one of those products you have to try out for yourself.
I have straight fine hair (but a lot of it) and a few of my hairs have more texture so they stick out and do weird things in general, so I'm always looking for products to tame the crazies. I've been through a couple tubes of Glossing Cream, but I'm not convinced, so I tried this. It is SUPER THICK (like if you get to the middle/end of a bottle, I don't know how you get the product out). If I managed to hit the "sweet spot" in terms of amount (too much = too heavy; too little = nothing) along with my fair share of blow-drying and flat ironing, this stuff works pretty great. But that sweet spot is hard to come by. And within a few days of using this, for the first time in my LIFETIME, my forehead broke out BADLY. This jug of mayo went right back to Nordy's. I exchanged for the heat styling product - hopefully I have a better experience with that.