Carbon, since it's inception as it took over for a small black eyeshadow MAC had for years called "Black Gold" (though it wasn't as BLACK as Carbon, but it didn't move either) has suffered from fallout if you were not used to working w/it. It's just the blackest, matte, powdered eyeshadow out there anywhere. It is a makeup artists "staple." I don't see how anyone, makeup artist or not, can be w/out it. Once ur used to it's necessary and special application methods it's quite easy to use. It's a Large shadow and soooo concentrated you use very little of it. It lasts forever before you have to repurchase. I've had mine for many years and it works and is as black as it was when I took it out of it's box and used it for the 1st time. A definite MAC "Classic" w/a "cult" following. There isn't a black pressed powdered eyeshadow as black as it anywhere, PERIOD! A MUST HAVE if ever there was one! Not even Dior or MUFE has anything near this black in pressed powder form. It is simply the RICHEST black you will ever find.( and that, as they say ,is that!)
This is my go to shave gel. It's for sensitive skin in that there is no frgrance, but more importantly it contains a higher concentration of the ingredient which give it and the blade more slip/cusion between the blade and beard. You get a more close and more comfortable shave from this and it's 3 bucks in Walmart. You can't beat this with a stick. A little goes a long way and it has good coverage so a bottle of this lasts a long time. It's made in Germany by the larger copany Beiersdorf. It contains many oils which gives it that great slip and camomile extact for soothing/haeling. Best shave gel for the money! Highly Recommended!!
Moisturizers -Neutrogena - Ageless Intensives Deep Wrinkle Moisture
bernsie 4/21/2012 10:59:00 AM
I LOVE this Retinol based cream both the daytime with SPF 20 w/Helioplex and night version. Both contain a time realeased version of a high grade Retinol along with Hyaluronic Acid for hydration. Consistent use of Retinol (which speeds up the exfoliation process and the cell renewal) will increase cloagen and elastin formation which intern speeds the renewall of Fibroblast reproduction.) Fibroblasts are what keep the skin tightly draped across the facial bones. Collagen and Elastin production maintain a finely textured outer skin making it look more even toned, firm, poreless and translucent. These are qualities found in young skin in abundence, but we loose this rapid turnover as we age. These products make skin repar itself in a much younger fashion. They are anti-ageing creams and are quite efficient at how they work. Most Highly Recommended!!
Moisturizers -Clinique - Zero Gravity Repairwear Lift Firming Cream
bernsie 4/21/2012 10:31:00 AM
I am a skin type 2 in Clinique. This cream (which comes in different formulas depending on skin type) is the best ant-ageing moisturizer Clinique makes as far as I'm concerned. There are many very up to the minute, high-tech ingredients in this cream. The higher number in skin care value the more "actives" are within the coresponding cream. It is made in 3 srengths: Type !, Type 2 and type 3-4 ( 3-4 containing the highest concentration of "actives." There are many actives within the formula, but the most advanced is this special molecule Clinique's R&D Team has patented. It is this long molecular structure in which they were able to combine Retinol (time released version) with a firming ingredient. I skipped on the #2 formula I was recommended and bought the 3-4 formula as I new it would have the highest strength of Retinol. I also bought one in formula 1 for it's intense hydration. and alter between the two. I feel they work well as you can feel your skin firming as the months go on while using these. Skin became more dense as well. They call this Zero Gravity Lift. I think it's title says it all and it actually does what it says it does. The texture is differnt between the two formula's, as it should be, but both textures are marvelous. I LOVE these formula's and the product in general. Highly Recommended!
Treatments (Eye) -Clinique - Repairwear- Intensive Eye Cream
bernsie 4/21/2012 10:10:00 AM
I prefer this eyecream to all oher Clinique eyecreans as it is the richest. I do not like eyecreams which when settled in leave no residue behind. I like some emmolient protection left behind after an eye cream has set in and dries down. You can feel your undereye area 5-6 hours after the application and still feel the protection of this product.. Does it make lines/wrinkles around the eye look more corrected after 2-4 weeks of 2x/day use?? No, it does not. However, it contains anti-oxidents which definitely protect against future damage. There is some caffeine in it which will certainly reduce morning puffiness. The texture is like silk. It feels so marvelou going on. A little goes a long way as it has a wonderful "slip" to it. TIP; After all my makeup application is finished I take a small amount of this and starting at the outer eye (particularly where there are lines) and lightly dab it on and bring the leftover on my finger to smooth over the concealed inner eye area and along the top of the cheekbone which is inbetween the two. This helps float pigment that is caught in any fine lined area (outer eye area) and once it is "stippled" (then blended) over the concealer (inner eye area) it creats a sheen and makes the whole area look more hydrated The sheen brings in "light; to the outer eye, the inner eye (over concealer) and the uppermost part of the cheekbone bringing them more forward as they are now subtley hi-lited which makes any place this is applied in this manner more hydrated, fresh and healthy looking. You need a particular textur of eye cream to accompish this and Repairwear Eye Cream fits the bill nicely! Highly Recommended!!
I have this newer formula, but in #245 Pinot and #205 inTulip. I like these lipstick/lipgloss/lip balm formula of lipstick. It's sheer enough to let the texture of your lips show through yet has enough pigment/deposit to give you substance and texture improvement to whatever condition your lips are in. They are very hydrating the way a lip balm is yet the color stay quite well and once worn off leaves a nice stain behind. The barrel is extra small which I like as you can really shape the lips with accuracy. I like these 2 colors as they are rosey/mauve/browned neutrals, but with enough color burst so they never look muddy or deadpaned as many neutrals can do. When in doubt choose either of these and they go with anything. The color value is for a fair to medium toned skin. Any darker skin than these and you might find they get lost on you. I like the mix of the 2 together. They are rather inexpensive in Walmart and have a high performance for cost and value. Easily Recommended!
Lipstick -Revlon - Colorstay Soft and Smooth Lipcolor in 200 Natural Cashmere
bernsie 4/20/2012 12:36:00 PM
This lipstck is Revlon's version of transfer resistant, long wearing color for lipos. The application method is like a regular lipstick in that it rolls up to expose the product and you roll it back down and recap it to seal it. I'm not the biggest fan of those liquid lipstick formulas which come in a lipgloss tube with the sponge tipped colts foot applicator. I prefer this. It goes on quite smoothly/silky feeling as a regular lipstick which is emmolient. It literally glides on. Little by little it begins to set and dry, but not too dry as so many are. The coverage is excellent and this color I LOVE as it is the color of lips, but intensified. A complete and total neutral if ever there was one. When in doubt go to this shade as it goes with anything and everything. The smaller barrel allows you to shape the lips more precisely than wider/larger ones. It doesn't run or bleed. It stays on and on and on and well you get the picture. An amazing lipstick in it's own right, but at this pricepoint it becomes a "star" product which is simply exceptional. Most Highly Recommended!!
Pressed Powders -L'Oreal - Infallible Never Fail Powder
bernsie 4/20/2012 12:12:00 PM
This is a very silky feeling pressed powder the likes of which I'm not used to getting in a drugstore/Walmart. I especially did not expect it to have this silky feel AND look on the skin from L'Oreal's "Infallible" line as it is their long wearing, transfer resistant range of products. I've said here many times that I'm not the biggest fan of transfer resistant products as they tend to take on the texture of whatever they are applied over: Dry, flakey skin tends to look moreso when a trnsfer resistant base is used atop. Acne/pitted skin tends to look moreso with a transfer resistant base on top. Regular foundations tend to refine these skin types more than the transfer resistant type though I understand their place. It's a godsend for oil ladden skin or just regular skin for that matter in South Florida in August with 95 degrees of heat and 99% humidity. When they are applied to descent skin the skin becomes good looking skin. Good skin looks like a very refined, haelthy even toned great skin and great skin looks AMAZING. Back to this pressed powder as it is AMAZING. The finish is gorgeous and has coverage when applied dry with a brush or the included (washable) sponge. Its definitely buildable, but then comes the real magic as you can dampen/wet the sponge and apply this pressed powder and get almost foundation like coverage from it. It stays on forever (claiming 16 hours.) The color range is fine.This stuff is a multi tasker if ever there was one. This pressed powder is brand new and it roccks. Highly Recommended!!!
I use the newer version "Proglide Power." The blades are a bit different than the originals when fusion 1st hit the market as these "Proglide" razor and blades give a more close and comfortable shave w/less pulling/tugging at the beard, though only someone whose beard is extra heavy and tough would notice the difference. The blades are rediculously expensive. I do buy them anyway though. I get them in BJ's where they're a bit less expensive as you buy them in bulk. I think a package of 15 costs $50.00. I'm hooked and would do without for these blades. Here's a tip: if you dry the blade w/a clean dry towel after use they last twice as long. I kid you not. Evidently the tap water drying on them causes oxidation which dulls the blade as it drie and aftr they've dried as well. When they say "the best a man can get" they mean it!!!.
The shade is "Forever Frappe #814." This is an excellent lipstick as it runs middle of the road of a transfer resitant w/a regular satin emmolient bsed lipstick. It wears longer than a regular lipstick, but not quite as long as a transfer resitant which is great as it has none of the side affects of trasnfer resistant (dry as a bone texture making the lips look flat and matte accenting dry/chapped lips which the transfer resistan lipstick might have caused in the first place.) It still will dry down to a matte fish just not as dry and with more life than transfer resistant. It won't bleed or run, come of on water/wine glasses/cofee cups. I actually use Revlons Just Bitten Formula felt lipstick stain as the lipliner in the color Forbidden/Interdiction with tis L'Oreal Infallible color. They go quite well togetther and achieve a formidable neutral with a bit of pizzaz which is hard matched to find a better combo to achieve the desired results. Highly Recommended!
Well, lets face it Elizabeth Ardens Eight Hour Cream has been an Arden Maistay since it's incrnation in the '70's. I belive it was originally developed ans a burn haeling emmolient. It then began to expand it's usage into all different ways: On the lips, for chapped skin ares, for dry skin areas, for craked and dry skin all over the body. It became a healing balm for practically anything, anywhere. Makeup artist loved it on top of lipstick as made for an extremely shiny gloss over any lipstick. It was pure genious putting this formula into a lipstick application method and was used as such for years before they came out with the idea of tinting it and adding an SPF. This particular color "Berry" is a universal shade as it colors the lips in a see through way and in a most marvelous color ( as if your lips went through a long and hard kissing session. You know the color: a flush of pink/red as if blood has rushed to the lips giving them this amazing color babies/young children have 24 hours a day. It's a young and fresh color giving instant health and vibrance to the lips through the color and formula. It's like the color a Renasaince painter would color the lips of a cherub. Sexy and good gorl at the same time. It heals/nourashes/protects/smooths and colors the lips and protects with an SPF under the guise of the famous Eight Hour Formula. Highly Recommended to say the least!
The color is "Forbidden/Interdiction" This is probably the most natural color I could find within this range of colors as it looks like the color of "lip" times 2 in intensity. I love these most of all as a lipliner as opposed to an allover lipstain. I will frequently use this color to ever so slightly over draw the lip contour and really give a sharp roundness to the cupids bow. I then fill in with a coordinating (natural rose-brown) color. I love the definition you can get with this felt tipped lipstain and stain it does as it stays on till the next day yet w/out drying the lips in the way transfer resistant lipsticks can do. It initially applies velvety smooth with the least amount of pressure. It just glides on for lack of a better word to describe. However, after a bit of time the tip seems to dry out and skip. If you use some pressure by holding the tip perpendiculr to your hand and use some pressure by pushig down quite hard and releasing (doing this 3 or 4 times) it eems to get things moving again. It's like a magic marker for your lips, but has the staying power of a "sharpie." I don't really like it as a lipstain/lipstick all over the lips-filled in entirely as the color just looks flat and kind of nowhere. It definiely needs the other gloss end applied over it once the initial color from the felt tip has set. Even the gloss wears off quite quickly and once again you are left with that falt color which is totally see through doing nothing to make the lips look like the beutiful texture a regular lipstick will give through it's pigments and smooth formula. This is why I mostly use it as a lipliner. It's an interesting take on transfer resistant through it's stain, it just does nothing to improve and make pretty the texture of pigmented lipsticks with it's ingredients which add a plumpness and luxury feeling and look to the lips. It's OK as a lipstick, but tremendous as a lipliner used in conjunction with a luxury lipstick.
Blush -Maybelline - Mineral Power Naturally Luminous Blush, all colors
bernsie 4/20/2012 1:49:00 AM
I have used 2 colors: Mauve and Original Rose. Mauve is a bit more colorful as Original Rose is the least, most naturally pigmented color within the lineup. I think this is a marvelous loose powdered blush for it's performance/price ratio. It's cheap as dirt yet gives the most beautiful texture/payoff on the skin. It's packaged as a loose powder. I just turn it upside down and give it a light tap and bring it back to rightside up and retap it. You remove the lid and there is the perfect amount which has sifted through the plastic holes of the retaining well. Dip a medium to smalle sized blush brush into the powder id tap/click off the excess and apply to the apple working your way along the cheekbone to the ear. I like it dusted across the nose, temples, chin and jawline. There is a "glow" incorporated in the color which is so beautiful that you'd swear this was a high end cosmetic line and not something from Maybeline. The glow it gives never catches the light where an individuual reflective pigment or group of pigments reflects light back as in a mirror effect which can look fake or even frosted. It's pigments are milled quite finely in a product of this pricepoint. Both colors and performance/texture/wearability of this blush is beyond Highly Recommended. If you have not tried this blush go out and get it as you will LOVE it!!
I'm reviewing the #001 Translucent which appears in the above photo as the first from the left in the silver packaging. This is an entirely different formula from the "colored" variaties available. It's almost pure white in color in the compact yet is totally clear on the skin with no pigment or payoff one is used to in a pressed powder. This is an amazing powder to set concealer which is a first for me as I hate powder anywhere near the under eye area as it always seems to texturize the skin there and not in a good way. This however is amazining in that it sets the concealer yet has this diffusing/blurring effect on the undereye. It doesn't exactly give a glow to the skin, but it doesn't make it flat matte either. It's hard for me to explain as I've never seen or used anything like it and I've been a makeup artist since 1978! I've used it to set foundation with a nice full, fluffy Powder brush and have brushed it with the accompanying brush which comes with it for use on an oily T-Zone. Again, it does not give a flattened out matte look to the skin or foundation yet it iradicates an oily sheen beautifully. I can actually use the small brush it comes with to set undereye concealer or concealer that I've applied to the eyelid up to the brow as an eyeshadow base. It prevents creasing of the concealer and I can go on and on and sing the praise for this Revlon baby, but you have to use it to "get" it. It's a surprise to say the least. Highly Recommended!
Lip Treatments -Nivea - A Kiss of Relief- SOS Lip Care
bernsie 4/20/2012 1:19:00 AM
This is by far my favorite lip balm for dry, chapped lips or just to use every night before bed to keep the lips well cared for. It's very hydrating without being overly shiny so men can use this as well. It seems to last forever as you use so little of it and there is a good amount of it. It's cheap as dirt and I swear is even better than Kiehl's Lip Balm #1 which has a "cult" following and has had for quite some many years. It comes in a convenient tube w/cap and the applicator is slanted for ease of application. I've a friend who was in Germany this past winter and he told me he must have seen 50 men and women pulling this out of their pockets/purses and applying it in the steets, on the piublic transports and in stores, just everywhere. It seems to be a staple for most everyone in Germany. Highly Recommended!