This is good for a lightweight natural foundation; it really reminds me of a tinted moisturizer though. Because that's exactly what it's like, it doesn't cover as much as I want. I have some slight redness and it takes two layers to even out with this product so if you don't require much coverage, it would probably be great. The lightest shade, Porcelain Ivory, is also a bit too tan for my NC15 skintone, even with the sheer coverage. I don't get a matte finish- I need to apply powder over it for that, and it doesn't last long on my combo skin, making me look shiny almost immediately. It may be fine for those who don't need much in the way of foundation or want a really natural look, but it's not for me. It is very easy to blend, doesn't seem to break me out and comes in a sanitary squeeze tube, but I sitll don't plan on repurchasing.
Blush -L'Oreal - HIP Blendable Blushing Creme - Tickled
stephani99 1/21/2006 5:17:00 PM
Pros: the packaging is nice, I love the color (medium warm red with gold/orange shimmer- think MAC Variety in creme form), nicely pigmented and lasting power is good. Cons: goes on too bright/clownish if you use too much or don't blend well, and it's EXTREMELY difficult to blend. I had to add a drop of moisturizer after I applied to get it emollient enough; an extra step I don't need with a creme blush. I guess I'm spoiled by texture and blendability of MAC Blushcremes and Maybelline DMM blush, which this definitely isn't. It's just too much effort and I have many other creme blushes I like better so I won't be repurchasing, especially because these aren't exactly cheap for drugstore.
Blush -Physicians Formula - Pearls of Perfection Blush - Blushing Nude
stephani99 11/14/2005 7:18:00 PM
Love this! I too got this in a two-fer set with a freebie lip palette (pan style, not the pearls). I wanted a nude/neutral blush to wear with warm eye and lip colors and this is it. It's quite versatile and I'm very impressed with how finely milled and silky this is! I also like that it's not that shimmery making it look more natural. I haven't been a fan of the few PF products I've tried in the past so that was a pleasant surprise. It's not too bright, not too dark, nor is it orange and the color doesn't turn or fade during the day either. The packaging is a bit bulky (only meriting a 4) but cute in it's own way and the brush, while not the best, works in a pinch. Based on this discovery I will take another look at this line- especially the blushes.
Highlighters -Physicians Formula - Virtual Face Powder beige pearl
stephani99 11/14/2005 7:11:00 PM
I'm not a big fan of PF stuff as a rule, but I do like this new beigey-pinky-pearly multi-use powder. I like it much better than the light pink one I tried before which didn't show up on me. Beige Pearl is exactly what I wanted a couple of the MAC Skinfinishes to be but weren't, plus these are cheaper (especially when they come with a $2 off coupon attached, yay). For me this has good pigment without being OTT on my NC15/PPP skin, is easy to apply, doesn't make my pores look huge, doesn't have mega glitter and has decent lasting power. It looks nice whether worn by itself, used as a highlighter or on top of blushes in the same color family (nudes, peaches, beiges etc.). The brush is actually servicable, which comes in handy in a pinch. My only complaint is that the packaging is too bulky & sometimes the lid on mine pops open by itself, so it only gets a 4. This is probably the best shade out of all the Virtual Powders.
Lip Gloss -mark - Bee Pouty Voluptuous Lip Plumper
stephani99 11/13/2005 5:32:00 PM
For me this does nothing as a real lip plumper (it only makes them look a bit smoother, not larger), but as a yummy honey scented and tasting lipbalm, it's tops. There's a lot of product in that click-pen applicator; it lasts a long time on the lips, moisturizes really well, makes my lips soft and gives them a lovely sheen. It's thick but not overly gooey or sticky unless you overdo it. This one is right up there with Mark's Kiss Therapy for me and I plan to repurchase when I run out.
Lip Treatments -mark - Kiss Therapy Super Soothing Lip Balm [DISCONTINUED]
stephani99 11/13/2005 5:24:00 PM
The only lipbalm I've repeatedly used up and repurchased, which as a lip product junkie is saying a lot. Kiss Therapy is what I wanted the nasty Rosebud Salve to be; it's the best. Uber-moisturizing, great scent, no taste, perfect texture- not thin, sticky or tacky and leaves a nice sheen. The best I've found for my chronically chapped lips because it makes them so soft. Lasts a long time and good to have around for everything from lipbalm to cuticle cream to smoothing unruly eyebrows, seriously. I'm not a big fan of the tin packaging (I don't have a problem openening it at least) but it's so cute I overlook having to dip my fingers in to apply. I guess you could use a lipbrush, but I'm far too lazy to mess with all that :)
Bleh. I had higher hopes for this, but all it smells like is marigold scented soap. Later it dries down to sandalwood-marigold scented soap. Not unique and not good on me, although it lasts awhile so it's too bad I hate it. I think I'll return it and get Touch instead.
Eye Shadow -Physicians Formula - Baked Collection Baked Smokes
stephani99 11/3/2005 4:19:00 PM
EDITED. I figured out the trick to get the pigment out of these because I wasn't at first and was sorely disappointed. You need to "rough up" each shadow with a sponge-tip applicator prior to using with a brush. Apparently there's a coating over them when new, which doesn't allow much product on your brush no matter how much you try (or maybe it was just my set). Anyway, after I did that I've had no problems with the pigment in these and now I'm loving them, the darkest shade especially. It's an awesome nearly-black shimmery shade without glitter, yay! Now I feel l ike everyone else here, this set is perfect for smoky eyes.
Eye Shadow -Revlon - Colorstay 12-Hour Eyeshadow quad "Spring Moss"
stephani99 11/1/2005 2:07:00 PM
I really like this quad for the reason that it isn't highly pigmented. I don't always want bright or screaming green eye mu so this lovely quad works nicely for daytime, or anytime I want a more neutral, subtle-but-pretty green look. It has four shades that work nicely together, some more shimmery than others but all look great with my hazel eyes. The powders are silky and blend nicely, have good lasting power over an eye base and the packaging is sleek and easily portable. If I didn't already have so much e/s I'd probably pick up a couple more of these in different colors.
Pressed Powders -Cover Girl - TruBlend Pressed Powder
stephani99 10/31/2005 5:50:00 PM
I was surprised this was so pricey for Cover Girl, but it is pretty nice. I got Translucent Fair for my NC15/PPP skin & it seems to match well, although like most powders it looks a bit dry & chalky on my drier areas at first, even applied with a brush (forget that lousy sponge it comes with, tossed it immediately). However, once settled it looks great, covers well and evens my skintone nicely. The texture is silky and soft; the coverage more than I expected, rivaling most powder foundations I've used (in that it's not a sheer powder). I wore this by itself over moisturizer and it worked so well I may just use TruBlend instead of an actual powder foundation; it looks and performs the same way, controlling my oilier t-zone pretty well and lasting most of the day; no breakouts either. The powder surface does get these weird bumps after use, but it doesn't seem to affect the product, application or wear, at least so far. The best part is that it has NO weird scent like other CG powders, yay!
I've only tried a couple lip plumpers, mostly because I like the tingle & flush they give my lips, not because I need much plumping. However, I was pleasantly suprised by this one. The ingredients and results are up there with TF's Lip Injection and Fat Kiss with a much smaller pricetag. This pleasantly tingly clear minty/cinnamon-y gloss leaves my lips shiny, flushed (a nice pink, not bright red) and seems to make them a little bit fuller, for a short while anyway. I love the packaging, brush applicator & lasting power as well. It's a bit sticky and thick if you're not used to that, but I'm a rabid JT fan so it's not an issue for me. Definitely a repurchase!
Skincare - Body -Philosophy - The muffin man suitcase
stephani99 10/29/2005 7:39:00 PM
I finally got my Muffin Man set and yep, as previously mentioned and much debated on the mu board, the suitcase is cardboard :( It's not tacky or cheap looking but still, huge bummer because I was hoping for tin. After that disappointment came another: the supposedly 'lemon custard muffin' scent is indeed way more lemon than anything else, especially the body cream/souffle' (although the slight gold luminescence it has is kind of pretty). However, since I'm not a fan of wearing or using anything that smells even vaguely like Lemon Pledge, I doubt I'll be keeping this set, cuteness of the idea and the packaging notwithstanding.
I love this, but YMMV. What sold me was that I was in a store and the salesgirl said to me "you are abnormally beautiful, wow!" (which I think was a compliment) and guess what? I was wearing this foundation, a bit of pink blush, no other mu AND had been running my butt off in this unusually warm CA October weather. I have very fair (NC15) combo skin, drier in cold weather with a persistent oily t-zone and picked the lightest Ivory shade. I was quite impressed with how well it held up during that busy day and continues to do so. Now, the main thing I've learned over the years at MUA is what works for most people won't work for me and vice versa (i.e. all Revlon foundations, L'Oreal Voluminous mascara, NARS Orgasm blush, you get the idea). Naturally, this falls into that category and so far it's awesome. I love the pump dispenser; one two two pumps gives enough product to cover what and where I need it to so at this rate the bottle will last forever. You do need to shake it and blend fast because it sets fast. After that it looks natural and radiant without being dewy, doesn't settle into lines, enhance pores or make me look or feel fake, even in the aforementioned flourescent (store) lighting. Using a little powder over this makes me look almost flawless, whoa. The spf in this is nice too. So far it doesn't break me out, but then again I have the best luck with L'Oreal foundations so I have high hopes this may finally be The One. If they go and discontinue this I'm going to cry.
Liquid -Almay - Wake Up Call Energizing Makeup SPF 15
stephani99 10/29/2005 4:05:00 PM
(ah yes, another product I like that others hate, LOL! That's just the way it is so I'm starting to go for things with low ratings.) Anyway, I wore this yesterday and got a compliment on my makeup I've never had before, which made me take a longer look at this foundation since I hadn't been wearing it lately. I love the pump dispenser, the foundation is easy to blend, has no scent or tingly feel like some other Almay foundations; gives a nice natural sheer to medium finish depending on how much you use and how you apply (brush, fingers or sponge). It doesn't sink into laugh lines or enhance my pores, nor does it break me out and the Ivory shade matches my paleness perfectly. I used a little bit of powder on my t-zone after applying & this stuff lasted all day through a dentist appt without looking worse for the wear. I don't know about the "energizing properties" or whatever, but even so, it's earned a spot in my makeup rotation.
I tried Fresh Ivory and loved it; perfect shade match for my NC15-PPPness, perfect coverage, easy to blend and left a lovely finish (and I mean it looked gorgeous) ...UNTIL it broke me out big-time after about a week. I'm not acne-prone but I must be sensitive to something in Revlon foundations because every time I try one, no matter the formula, they break me out :( I'm like the polar opposite of everyone else here because I don't have this problem with L'Oreal and Maybelline foundations like many seem to, so I'll be sticking with those from now on. Pity, because this one could have been HG-worthy if not for the zits. However, if your skin isn't a freak of nature like mine, give this a try!