Loose Powders -Caron - Peau fine activee in Rose bonne mine
Daphers 11/22/2007 6:27:00 AM
I can't work out which of Caron's powders this is: classic or transparent, so sorry if this review confuses anyone. At first I couldn't bear the extremely strong rose fragrance of this powder, but after leaving it for a month out of its box once I'd opened it I found the smell faded enough that I could wear it. It's light warm pink, finely milled and looks gorgeous on: not too matt, a little coverage, and not powdery or cakey-looking at all. I have light olive skin and usually prefer neutral foundations/powders but this looks fine on me. No breakouts from it and oil control is decent. I got this one on ebay but otherwise the only places I think you can get Caron powders in the UK are on the top floor of Harrods in the Roja Dove parfumerie, which is hard to find and there are no assistants to help you (SO and I spent an awkward half hour there once before sheepishly leaving empty-handed) or on the second floor of Fortnum's where they have all the powder set out properly. Love this. Price here is £30 for the loose powder and £29 for the pressed.
I have a confession to make: I'm not much of a gloss girl. I like subtle shine, moderate pigment and NO stickiness. When I do choose gloss I prefer compacts over tubes, and the only glosses I really like are Chantecaille. So I was quite excited to see Lola's compact glosses. Sexy red packaging, well designed, and this shade looks a gorgeous deep dark red in the pot. I tried it: no stickiness. It's not quite as moisturising or balm-like as Chantecaille but it's close enough. So far so good, but.... shame about the colour. It's not dark red; it's fuchsia. Then, to make matters worse, the colour immediately bled so I had bright colour in the tiny lines of my lips and just gloss everywhere else. This is something I might expect from a drugstore gloss. I'm 26 so I don't usually worry about bleeding lip colour. And I don't intend to start. I won't be using this again. Though I might be tempted to try another Lola gloss in a lighter colour.
Maybe it's too early for me to review this product but I can't resist: I think I'm in love after a week. This is a review just for use as a facial cleanser as I haven't tried it elsewhere yet. This cleanser has really made a big difference to my skin. It's the first foaming cleanser I've ever used, having thought that foam was evil and drying. This stuff barely dries out my skin at all and has helped clear it up. I've only had one zit since starting using this. It looks and smells like cheap detergent. It feels like it doesn't rinse clean but apparently it's supposed not to, to maintain the acid mantle or something. Anyway I haven't had problems with it, though that may be also because I use a SA toner afterwards and that cleans off any residue. Love the fact this is pH-balanced. And cheap. I couldn't find this in Boots or Superdrug in the UK but found it easily in the first independent chemist I went into. The only thing I don't like is the ugly packaging and general unglamourous nature of the product. I'm such a product ho, LOL, I want gold and shiny labels and nothing on the packaging to indicate I have problem skin. But I can live with that. Skin-type: oily but often dehydrated, acne-prone, congested, sensitive. UPDATE: Been using this for a few months and still love it. It cleans properly, unlike my previous cleansers, and it doesn't strip or dry the skin. Recommended.
I've tried four products in the Gingerbread Man line: this, the body lotion, the scrub and the lip balm. Of these only the balm smells like gingerbread - and I hate it. The others all smell the same: spicy citrus - which I love. This is one of my all-time favourite smells and I don't much like ginger, so don't expect much gingeriness here. I'm surprised so many reviewers hate the scent as I thought it was pleasant and hard to dislike. It lathers a lot, which I don't think is great as it only means it's full of sulphates, but it does make it last. I will keep re-purchasing this for a long time, along with the scrub.
Toners -Avalon Organics Botanicals - Therapeutic Lavender Facial Toner
Daphers 10/22/2007 5:18:00 AM
I normally avoid toners but bought this one for its salicylic acid content rather than its toning properties. It has lots of good ingredients: glycerine for moisture, lavender to soothe and disinfect, and some anti-oxidants. It's made a real difference to my pores and blackheads, which is what I bought it for, much more than PC 2%BHA. It's also cheaper and more easily available (in the UK). My only problem with this is that it stings a little on application, but then I'm using retinoids and have sensitive skin, so I wouldn't expect many people to have that problem. Obviously avoid this if you have problems with essential oils but otherwise I recommend this to anyone having problems with clogged pores.
Misc Beauty Tools -Unlisted Brand - Skinvac Pore Gripper
Daphers 9/26/2007 10:16:00 AM
This is the Skinvac cloth that's specifically for clearing pores. There are other versions available (www.skinvac.com). You just wet it and wipe it gently across congested skin. This should be particularly good for people with blackheads and clogged pores. I'm still a bit undecided about this, simply because having used it half a dozen times I still haven't perfected the technique. For example the video on the website shows somebody wiping the cloth sideways whereas I would have expected the most effective direction to be downwards, same as when you use an extractor. The cloth feels soft, like it won't do anything, but BE CAREFUL! It's more effective than it looks. If I go over my skin more than twice I'm left with sore red patches of skin. My clogs do seem less pronounced after using it, but I need to try a few more times and then update. Here's my top tip for blackhead removal in large quantities: I find that I need two steps - one to loosen the clogs and another to remove them. I don't like steaming because of the risk of broken capillaries, so my first step is a chemical exfoliant. My favourites are Boots No-Grains exfoliator, Sothys Desquacreme (sp?) or Institut Esthederm (sorry, can't remember the name). For the second stage I either use the Skinvac or I massage with olive oil or a cleansing oil. One step on its own isn't really enough for me but the combination does the trick.
These are comparable to MAC pigments in every way - texture, colour pay-off etc. They come in a beautiful selection of colours, packaged as loose powder in little pots. The colours apply easily and last all day. You can get cheap samples from the website, which I recommend doing.
I wasn't sure how much I liked this product until I noticed I'd worn it every day for a month. I couldn't use it at first as I can't get the hang of buffing, but now I use a big soft powder puff (LM seems to be the best but I get mine from MAP in London, very cheap), sprinkle the powder on directly from the sifter and just sort of dab it on - no wiping, no buffing - and it looks great; not caked, not powdery, not shiny, just glowy and natural. There's not much coverage with this but that may be because of the way I apply it. I'm certain you could get more by applying it differently. I also mix concealer in with it if I really need high coverage. The colour selection is impressive and they let you have cheapo samples. I was able to get an excellent colour match after trying four shades using the guide on the website, which I found very helpful. The neutral shades are particularly good. I would definitely try a sample or two. Nothing to lose! Update 24/04/08: I think this is breaking me out. Shame because I was starting to like the way this makes my skin look more and more. :-(
I've been using Avene's thermal water spray for a year or two and found it slightly helped my sensitive rosacean skin. I only bought this when the pharmacy had run out of Avene. I'm so glad they did! This blows Avene out of the water. After about four days my skin had lost most of its redness and become more even-toned. I use it every am and pm after washing and can really see the difference in skin tone. It's more expensive than Avene and comes in a smaller bottle, but that's OK. This is my product of the year, I think. Great value for a product which has such a noticeable effect.
I've been using LL foundation every day for a fortnight and I'm still not sure how I feel about it, but what keeps me coming back every day is this concealer. It's very pigmented so it covers flawlessly and - perhaps because it's a powder instead of the usual cream - it stays put for hours. Unless it's a really hot humid day I often find I don't need to reapply concealer all day, which is unheard of for me. It comes in a sifter jar, like a smaller version of the foundation powder, so if you don't want to use it for spot coverage with a brush you can use it to increase the coverage of your foundation by blending them together (I put a sprinkle of each on a big fluffy velour puff, mix and apply). The only problem I have with it is the range of shades. The foundation's greatest selling point is the wide range of skin-true shades but the concealer only comes in three (I think) shades, so I sometimes get pale blotches where I've applied concealer, even if I use the same shade (Blondie) for both. But good stuff. I don't know how well you can mix regular foundation and mineral concealer but if you use mineral foundation already I would try this. They have fab cheap samples so nothing to lose!
I tried a lot of useless tools and lotions before paying out for a Diamancel foot file. It worked very well, though it took a long time to do anything, and I was satisfied. Then MUA started talking about the Microplane Orb. Uh-oh, I thought, just keep your head down and don't buy anyth- TOO LATE! I caved. I purchased. Luckily, this is one of the best products I've ever bought. It works in a fraction of the time of the Diamancel and manages to take off hard skin you thought you were stuck with for life. I recommend this above any other foot-filing product - save the money you would have spent on ineffective lotions and just splurge on this. Oh - and go easy the first time and don't try to get rid of every last bit of hard skin, as you WILL grate yourself red-raw if you do.
These things are fun! They're like stickers for your nails (but not like acrylic: they're not hard). Avon thoughtfully provides 8 per foot so you can choose the best sizes for you. Be warned that the biggest is fairly small and the smallest not that tiny. They must be pretty easy to apply as I did it quickly and it looked great, and I'm not particularly dextrous. Start with the small ones and work up to the largest the first time so that you've learnt how to do it by the time you get to your big toe, which is the most obvious one. The instructions say to smooth out the sticker after applying but I find it works better if you lay it on smoothly and then pat it down. It doesn't stick permanently immediately so you have at least ten minutes to peel one off if you make a boo-boo. I used a pale shade and it looked much better than regular paint would have done. So, how does it compare with regular polish: Stayed on for a week without any peeling! Same speed to apply but doesn't have that strong polish smell and there's no waiting for it to dry. Looks better than regular polish though if you don't match the sizes you may get gaps. Expensive per use :-( Fun to apply! Would I buy this again? Yes, though not often, as the cost-per-wear far exceeds even the most expensive bottles. I get mine on ebay (like everything else I own, LOL) which reduces the cost quite significantly, even though I have to order them from the States at the moment. Worth trying out at least once.
Utterly gorgeous. This is a cream/satin texture, which ordinarily I find drying in other brands. This however feels almost like a lipbalm, it's so moisturising. I normally have to wear those sheer shiny lipsticks to avoid the dryness but with Darphin I don't have to. Fantastic. I have this in Petale, which is a weird pale orange. Lovers of Darphin skincare: don't forget to try the make-up too!
As standard floss, this works just fine. But isn't it supposed to be whitening? It didn't do any of that at all. Still, I'll repurchase because it works out as the same price as regular floss and I'm optimistic despite experience.
Blush -BeneFit Cosmetics - Georgia ] ] [DISCONTINUED]
Daphers 5/16/2007 4:59:00 AM
This is one of those products which I couldn't get to work the first time I used them, but which I now love. It's a brightening complexion powder, not a blush or a highlighter. I have more trouble matching powders to my skintone than I do foundation, so I like the idea of a one-colour-fits-all. This shade makes me look healthy: not pale, not orange, just right. The texture is good too as it's just the right amount of matt and it never looks chalky or powdery. I do think you need to have the right colouring for this to work on you: fairly light and warm-toned, for example. Also, I'm pretty pale and even on me this doesn't show up as a blush. Packaging is impractical but as long as you don't store it in your bathroom or plan to carry it with you for touch-ups it's not a big deal. Oh - and toss the brush, it's useless.