Lotions/ Creams -Philosophy - Pure Grace Perfumed Body Lotion
Mikeswife 11/7/2012 11:29:00 AM
I started with this as a sample size from TJ Maxx (so very inexpensive) and liked it so much I asked for one of their jumbo pumps for my birthday. Price--ouch. And I know there are higher ones out there! Packaging--nice pump, but I think the slogan is meh. Product--love this stuff. Love the scent, which means something, as I typically like my lotions completely devoid of any smell. It's nice nice enough to use as a fragrance. I find the product itself to be smooth and absorbent. When I run out, it will have to go back on a wishlist though, due to the price.
Lotions/ Creams -Gold Bond - Ultimate Softening Skin Therapy Lotion Shea Butter
Mikeswife 11/7/2012 11:24:00 AM
Nice packaging, and you get a good amount for what it costs, but I can't stand the way this smells once it gets on my hands. I also find it to be thick and gloppy. Much prefer the Eucerin Original pump lotion for legs and body.
Lotions/ Creams -Eucerin - Original Moisturizing Lotion
Mikeswife 11/7/2012 11:20:00 AM
I'm a little surprised at all of the negative reviews for this product. This is my HG body moisturizer. Price--at $11 or so, not the least expensive drugstore moisturizer I've ever purchased. However, coupons abound, and I think the benefits more than make up for the higher price. Packaging--love this in the pump. Product--perhaps I should qualify this review and say I only use this on my legs and body, never on my face or hands. I live in a fairly dry climate, especially in the winter months, and could not stand that itchy, tight feeling my skin would have when I got out of the shower, especially after shaving. However, I am also not a fan of sticky, scented lotions, and gave up using Gold Bond for precisely that reason. This stuff, IMO, is fantastic. There is no scent to it, at all, and I cannot overemphasize how important that is to me. I use one pump for each of my legs and it leaves my skin feeling moisturized and smooth. It absorbs cleanly and doesn't leave my legs feeling tacky or greasy. The bottle is huge. All of these things make the price more than worth it.
Eye Primer -Too Faced - Shadow Insurance, Anti-Crease Eye Shadow Primer
Mikeswife 11/7/2012 11:08:00 AM
This is the first eyeshadow primer I've tried and I'm impressed, for the most part. Price--when I was researching this type of product, this and UD kept coming up over and over again as top recommendations. They are an equivalent price. I bought this one because the tube is smaller. Packaging--decent. Squeeze tube and the applicator does a decent job of allowing you to control how much comes out. Product--does this keep my eyeshadow on all day without creasing? Yes, so it does what it's supposed to do, and I was pretty skeptical before actually trying it. However, I wonder sometimes if it makes my eyelids look too dry. I am not sure there is an equivalent product in terms of wear that will not cause the same effect. I'm now reading good things about the E.L.F. version so I may try that at some point, especially if it's so much less expensive. I'm also not always crazy about how, when you first squeeze it, a dollop of oil will come out before any product does. I've learned to shake it a bit before dispensing.
This color isn't really light enough on me to use as a highlighter, but I do like it as a nice neutral base for the rest of my eyeshadow. Fallout is minimal and it's matte, so work-appropriate. I would probably repurchase.
Tinted Moisturizer -Bobbi Brown - Oil Free Tinted Moisturizer (Spring 2011)
Mikeswife 11/7/2012 10:56:00 AM
This is a great product for those who have yet to find a natural-looking regular foundation. Price--not cheap at $42. There's a good amount in the package though, and I've found that drugstore TM's don't give nearly as good coverage, so this may be one area where splurging does you well. Packaging--I like the tube, and I like that it has the cap at the bottom so you're most likely getting all of the product out of the package. The squirt top does a good job controlling the amount of product that comes out. Product--as I stated in my first sentence, I have been on a years-long quest to find a natural looking foundation and have yet to succeed. I needed something that would give me an even tone to apply the rest of my makeup, and as of right now, this is doing the best job. I use this in XL tint, which is a near-perfect match for my skin. While it doesn't completely obscure every drop of redness I have on my face, it also doesn't make me feel or look like I'm wearing a mask, which IMO, is far more important. (And note--I did not have the same experience at all when I tried using some of BB's foundations, which I found to be kind-of heavy and unnatural looking). I've also tried her non-oil-free TM and in terms of coverage, the two were equivalent. When this tube runs out, I may consider going back to that version since my skin is terribly dry and I am not averse to oil. That said, this oil-free version doesn't cake up or settle into my face and I think it looks very natural. I also found that BB's color line was better for my skin tone that LM.
This looks practically neon in the package, but really goes on as a very natural looking pink shade. Price--Bobbi Brown, so pony up. Packaging--that price gets you her classic sleek black cases that have a nice heft. I've traveled with this blush countless times, it's been dropped onto the sink or floor more than once and I've had no issue with cracking or breaking. I took off one lippie though because I wish the surface area of the product was bigger to move the brush around in. Product--a very natural looking shade of pink on my fair skin. (I wear her XL TM). Use a light hand and a nice fluffy brush. No sparkle either, so completely work-appropriate. I've had issues in the past with buying blushes that either don't show up, have too much shimmer or are too dark and this is none of those things. This is one of those products that you really have to try before making a decision.
I'm fairly new to regular eyelining and wanted to test it out before dropping a ton of money at a counter only to realize that it wasn't for me. This is a great little eyeshadow. Price--dirt cheap. Less than $3. Packaging--the case was a bit hard to open at first, but not a big deal. The real test will be when I have to travel and see how it holds up in a makeup bag, but for now, it's great. Product--smooth shadow, completely matte black with no shimmer / sparkle, which is what I wanted. On the first day I used it I had a bit of fall out, but now just make sure I tap my brush a bit before putting it up to my eye. For the amount I use (as liner only), I have to say I'm really glad I didn't decide to spend 5x as much at MAC for Carbon.
This is my HG nude lip product. Price / Value--NARS isn't cheap. Good amount of product for the money. Packaging--great. Love lip glosses with wands. Product--I have dark eyes and dark hair, but fair skin. This is one of the few nude lip glosses I can wear that doesn't make me look completely washed out. It has just a hint of color in it that really enhances my natural lip tone. I don't find it to be sticky, it's flavorless and it usually lasts until lunch. Love love love.
Makeup Brushes -Sonia Kashuk - Bent Eyeliner Brush
Mikeswife 11/7/2012 10:30:00 AM
I don't know where I've been, but this is the first bent eyeliner brush I've ever owned and I am pretty floored by how easy it makes applying product. Price--super. I think I paid $6 at Target. Packaging--decent. The brush comes with one of those small plastic sleeves over the bristles that gets lost within three days of opening the package. Application--great. This is my first foray into using a separate brush for eyeliner (normally use wand products) and it really makes it so easy to get right on the lashline. Works great and so far I don't see a need to shell out big bucks to get one that's more name brand.
I don't remember what I paid for this. I know it wasn't drugstore-level cheap, as far as a clear lip gloss goes. I have it in both the tube and the jar. As far as the product itself goes, I love this. It's not tacky or sticky and applies a nice, clear shine to the lips. The packaging isn't great, for either version. This is not really the kind of product that you want to carry around a lip brush for, and I'm not really a fan of having to stick my finger in the jar to put it on. The tube gets clogged around the cap with excess product. For both of these reasons, I don't use it a whole lot, which is a shame. They should take a cue from most lippie manufacturers these days and either make the tube with the slanted applicator top or include a wand.
I don't know what I'm missing, but for the most part, I am thoroughly unimpressed by this eyeliner. Price--at $30, certainly not the least expensive product. Packaging--the tube is nice. I think you get a good amount of product for the price. For people who don't like to fuss with brushes, the applicator is pretty easy to use. Product-the color line is decent. I own this in Brown, and there are 7 other colors to choose from not including their waterproof and special edition lines. I find it to be fairly liquidy on first application and usually have to go back over it. I also find it horrible for tightlining--it doesn't apply on my waterline whatsoever. Would I buy this again? Maybe isn't a choice, but that's my answer. I'm wondering if some of the other colors have a more consistent, dark application.
Maybelline discontinued the Expert Eyes twin pack in Charcoal Gray, which was my HG eyebrow pencil. Of course they did! I read reviews and someone mentioned that this pencil in Dark Blonde was a good match for color. Price--not bad. I think it was $5 at Target, although the Expert Eyes was half that for double the amount. Color--Dark Blonde is more or less the same tone as Charcoal Gray--no red undertone. My hair is a very dark ash brown, so who knew Dark Blonde would be a good choice? As an aside, I am not a fan of using eyeshadow in my brows or anything liquid. Packaging--this is my biggest complaint with this product. I absolutely loathe the twist up pencil. One of the benefits of the Expert Eyes pack was that you could sharpen the pencil as needed and I would use the side to fill in my brows with short strokes. The side application also, IMO, gave me good control over how much product I was applying. This doesn't require sharpening, but the point is pretty thin and using it anyway other than head on is close to impossible. The comb on the end is small and relatively useless too. Would I buy it again--well, I'm kind-of backed into a corner here, because I have yet to find anything else in a pencil in this shade. So yes, but I'll hate doing it.
Concealers -Maybelline - Instant Age Rewind Eraser Dark Circles
Mikeswife 11/7/2012 10:03:00 AM
I bought this in shade Neutralizer to help with my dark circles. Price--good. I think I paid $6 at Target. Color range--I am a yellow undertone and felt that of all the shades available, the Neutralizer was the best match. I've heard people rave about the Brightener shade, but it looked a bit too pink to me, as did the Light shade, which would have been my other choice. Packaging--after reading all of the reviews here, I went into this knowing that the sponge-top applicator was really hit or miss, so instead I blot on a bit and use my fingers to smooth it in. Coverage--prior to buying this, I was using LM Secret Concealer in color #2. While it's a good match for my skin tone, and does a great job concealing, it's a thicker consistency, and I was unhappy with how it settled into fine lines a short while after applying. My skin is pretty dry and I thought perhaps using a concealer that was a bit more liquid might help that issue. So far, I've not run into that problem with Maybelline. I also haven't used this for problem skin areas, and think I would probably use LM over this for anything other than my eye area. Wear--as far as I can tell, this gets me through my workday, which is about all I need. Edit 2/2013: I think I've changed my mind about rebuying this. I'm finding that the color is not quite right, and I don't think it does a bang-up job of concealing my dark circles on 8-hour workdays, which is a shame, because I still think stays out of my fine lines better than anything else I own.
As winter is here, I wanted to try a bronzer but didn't want to shell out a ton of money to start. I saw the reviews here for this product and figured for $3 I had not much to lose. First--packaging. I hadn't even taken the product seal off when the container fell approximately 2 inches from my hand to the sink and the product crumbled all around the edges. By this, definitely not something you'd want to keep in your purse. Second--color. I wear extra light tinted moisturizer as my base and was disappointed that the lightest color of this line (there are 3) was not in stock when I went to purchase. Reserve Your Cabana is the second darkest. It barely shows up on my skin. I like that it's matte, no glitter to be found, and not orangey in the least. But I'm also not sure that it's the right color as I don't see a noticeable difference when I have it on. I use a light hand, and really don't think that layering is the answer for something like this. Overall--great price, tons of product for the money, good starter if you're interested in trying a bronzer, but color choice is clearly pretty important.