Hair Styling Tools -Unlisted Brand - Tangle Teezer
JulesGrey 4/8/2013 6:04:00 PM
I have tail-bone length, fine but thick hair with a tendency towards waves and even curls if left to its own devices. It is not particularly tangle prone, but very sensitive to snagging and pulling. I thought I would never find a brush I like quite as much as my Mason Pearson mixed Popular brush, which in my opinion is all but the perfect brush except for the price and the fact that it is hard to clean, but the Tangle Teezer is definitely a surprisingly good contender for the first place. If you want a brush that gently detangles, can double up both as an ordinary styling brush and as a shower brush to distribute conditioner, then this is definitely the brush for you. Where it falls short in comparison to my Mason Pearson is the fact that it does not impart shine/softness to my hair on its own, but then, it is plastic and not boar bristle so I can hardly fault it for that. The other "fault" if you want is the design. It does lay very comfortably in the hand, but because of the cheap, slippery plastic it has a tendency to fly out of your hand. I think making the top a texturised rubber material would be a good thing. Some people say they want a handle, but that would mean it would become bulky and hard to just pop in my bag when travelling. Overall, if you need a brush for detangling, showering and travelling look no further than this one, just don't expect it to perform miracles of smoothing and imparting shine to your hair. For that, you do need a well used boar bristle brush.
This is a rather dry eye shadow primer, more of a concealer/cream texture than it is a lotion. This means that it is a bit more difficult to blend than the famous UDPP and TFSI without pulling on the lid and especially if you use too much. The trick to it is to just take a pinprick on your little finger (my ring finger is too big for the task) and then dot the small amount on before patting it on rather than using strokes. I have rather oily, hooded eye lids so I really need a primer that does its job well, and not only stops creasing but simply make sure the eye shadow doesn't budge at all. This does the trick more than well. I've worn it for whole days, out and about, during hot and sweaty summer days that make my whole face oily, but my eye shadow stays put. This is my new HG eye shadow primer. The simple reason? It is all that a staple should be. Good packaging and a reliable product for a fair price.
I have rather dark lashes naturally and so I tend to favour black mascaras and simply skip mascara for a more natural look. I never thought the day would come when I found a mascara so black that it almost is too black, but this is it. This is the blackest of black mascaras. Now, with all mascaras you have to keep in mind that they can't create full, fluttery lashes if you don't have good lashes to begin with. Mascara only coats and thus thickens, and lengthens, what is already there to begin with. On me, this mascara gives me an almost false lash effect, really darkening, thickening and lengthening my lashes separating them beautifully for a dark, long, fluttery kind of look. It is just on this side of believable, for my lashes to look real if the mascara was not so deeply black. Which is personally the look I like the best. Especially since I wear glasses, which cause too long lashes to be a problem. This mascara can be built up, adding more length and thickness as required though the lashes do tend to become a bit stiff and heavy if you do. Not a problem for me, but if you curl your lashes it might weigh them down and cause the curl to disappear. On naturally curled lashes, however, the stiff formula helps to lift them and open up the eye a bit more. When it comes to smudging and flaking...it is not a waterproof mascara and so any wetness can cause smudging, but save for that it does not smudge nor flake.
Fragrances -Elizabeth Arden - Taylor Swift Wonderstruck
JulesGrey 8/17/2012 8:43:00 AM
Sweet, sugary fruits with a soapy undertone...This smells like a school girl, a cloud of sweet fruits and soap. Not exactly a cheap scent, but too much of a young girl who have yet to learn that less is more to appeal to me. To make matters worse, I can pick up something very similar, for a fraction of the price, in my food store. True, this perfume does not have an alcohol undertone which cheaper perfumes tend to, and it is a bit more complex, but that is really its only saving grace. Even the smallest spritz/dab of this is overwhelmingly strong in scent. Many a young girl would think it a good thing, and I suppose this perfume is mostly marketed towards that age group. Personally, I find that because it is so strong in scent (even after several hours of wear) I develop a headache after a while of wearing it, I do like perfumes to have staying power, but within an hour I expect a perfume to be a subtle hint in the air. Not a frontal assault of scent that every person in the room can smell. And after a whole day, I definitely want the perfume to have died down so much in scent that only if I smell my skin can I detect it. I don't want to have to take a shower in the evening, to get rid of the scent!
I have seborrhoea, which can essentially be described as a very bad case of oily, itchy dandruff or an adult version of cradle cap. To keep this in check with ordinary shampoos I need to wash every single day, since they just can't tackle the build-up of dry and oily skin if I go longer between washes. With this shampoo I've found I can stretch washes four days. So wash on day one, no wash day two and three, wash day four. True, there is a slight build-up of dandruff for day four but not that bad. The main reason I wash on day four is simply that my hair starts to look greasy then. To make this shampoo work it is really, really important to let it sit for at least five minutes. This softens the dry skin, making it loosen and thus wash out easily. Personally, I prefer to use two-three drops for a first wash. Just to break the oily barrier on my hair. Rinse, then I use a small dollop (a little does it) just for my scalp and it foams wonderfully. If I don't to a pre-wash it foams less and is harder to massage into the scalp. It is a very gentle shampoo, considering it is an anti-dandruff one, that keeps my hair and my scalp happy, healthy and mostly problem free. I can even go without using conditioner with this, in a pinch, which I can't with any other shampoo. Oh, and the best part? A little really does it. I bought a bottle of this in April 2011. That one bottle lasted me for a whole year. Admittedly, I don't use this shampoo on my lengths (just the scalp) but still a very, very concentrated shampoo. Now, do keep in mind that this is a treatment shampoo. It is not designed to solve problems with dry hair and scalp. Many people get dandruff simply because their scalp is dry. If that is the case, you are better off trying one of their shampoos for dry hair. I think that is the issue most people have for whom this shampoo does not work.
Treatments -Aussie - 3 Minute Miracle Frizz Remedy
JulesGrey 7/17/2011 6:11:00 AM
In a conditioner, and especially a deep conditioner, I look for something that makes my hair soft, easy to detangle and helps tame my fine mixed hair that both has curls, waves and straight bits all intermingled which usually creates quite some frizz. This conditioner is one of few that I can just slather my hair in in the shower, without having detangled before, and come out with hair I can go to town in without being ashamed. It really works wonders at helping knots and tangles just wash out, which is a wonderful thing. The scent is nice too, a sweet kind of scent, that does not really linger which personally I find to be a plus. However, I do have a problem with this compared to the Reconstructor (that I much prefer). The first is that this is hard to wash out. Use a bit too much, and you will with all probability feel like washing your hair already the next day again because your hair just feels oily (usually I go three days between washings). The second thing is that it claims to be especially for frizzy hair...not so. I am not really that bothered if my hair is looking a bit frizzy. Most of the time, I have it up in a knot and you wouldn't be able to tell anyhow. But if a product claims to be for frizzy hair, it rather also deliver better than a product that does not claim such things. As it is, the Reconstructor version works as well if not better for my mixed hair. So, all in all, considering it costs close to 15 dollars here in Sweden...I'd rather try another version that does not leave my hair feeling oily by the next day.
Gels/Soaps -The Body Shop - Earth Lovers Watermelon & Eucalyptus Shower Gel
JulesGrey 7/13/2011 3:11:00 PM
The earth lover's shower gel line have completely converted me into a shower gel addict. I used to be a die hard soap fan, since I just found shower gels to be liquid soap (and more expensive per use). Not so in the case of this shower gel. This shower gel cleanses gently but effectively, leaving sensitive skin like mine soft and smooth and not red after showering (which is a first for me, since even supposedly allergy tested shower gels leave me with red rashes after showering). If you have very dry skin, I do recommend using a lotion with this, but for my normal skin it is not needed since this shower gel does not dry my skin out. Scent wise, this is a very girlish scent reminding me of watermelon candy. For a more male version, try the Lemon & Thyme.
Lotions/ Creams -Korres - Hand Cream with real thyme honey
JulesGrey 5/17/2011 5:15:00 PM
I don't typically have dry nor chapped hands, but my hands and nails do need some loving now and again especially if I've spent the day gardening or cleaning, The Thyme Honey Hand Cream is perfect for my needs. It is a rather light cream, with a pleasant but strong sweet honey scent to it that reminds me of saffron buns (Swedish speciality). A little really goes a long way, to just soften and hydrate my skin. Since I use such a little amount, it sinks in almost straight away, leaving just a velvety softness behind and a little bit of an oily but not at all sticky feeling. If you use a little bit more, it takes some time to sink in, but the result lasts and lasts and lasts until you wash your hands again. Price wise, it is rather expensive for a hand cream, especially since you only get 75ml. I don't really mind paying the 9 GBP this is every now and again, as a treat for my hard-working hands but this is not a staple for me because of the price. As for the packaging, a rather nice looking small plastic tube with a flip-flop lid. No complaints there. Perfect size for carrying around with you, if you are so inclined. Personally, I store it by my desk so no one else steals it from me (can and do happen).
This is a milky cleanser, with a very mild yoghurt type of scent, that spreads easily on your skin and massages in to leave it clean and fresh... Sadly, it also burnt my skin after a few uses, so I had to discontinue use. It might be that my skin is used to oil cleansing, and so reacts badly to anything not 100% natural or just some ingredient in this that does not agree with my skin...don't know. I don't usually have adverse reactions to things. So, because of that, I only give this product a three. I liked everything about it as a morning cleanser, save the burning.
As the previous reviewer noted, this perfume is very, very, very close to Flowerbomb at a fraction of the cost. Though, this is a little bit more subdued and less sweet than Flowerbomb, almost with a hint of something leatherish or smokish in the bottom (guess it is the freesia). I can't really smell the lychee at all, except for in the very initial, fresh and fruity burst that dies down within a minute. Mainly just a non-sweetened, round vanilla paired with freesia. Personally, I love scents that lingers close to the skin and does not fill a whole room with their presence, but I would have liked a little bit of a better throw, so I could truly smell it and not just a hint of something nice. Perhaps if I applied some more...but I think spraying the pulse points around my body once should be enough. So, I'm taking a star off for that. Or rather, for the fact that it has throw for about an hour or so before starting to really fade. Other than that, this perfume is a delight: scent, the bottle itself (I love the brown bottle and white cap) and the outside packaging. Few perfumes come packaged as beautifully and thoughtfully as this. The ingredient list is a part of the art on the outside, and they have a nice list of things that is not in the perfume including nuts and wheat (a very nice touch). Once you carefully open the box up, it folds out to reveal some information about the three key scents in the perfume before it unrolls to reveal the bottle itself, safely cushioned in the box. To summarise, if you are looking for a slightly more mature Flowebomb with a less sweet vanilla tone, suitable for everyday wear at a modest price, this is definitely it. This will definitely be a perfume I'll enjoy wearing a lot and might repurchase if I run out before they discontinue this particular scent (which Korres has a tendency to do with their scents).
Gels/Soaps -The Body Shop - Earth Lovers Lemon & Thyme Shower Gel
JulesGrey 5/9/2011 3:31:00 PM
How to begin... Oh, yes. I've been meaning to try this showergel for some time but never got around to it because of the price. I love the different scents, and the fact that it is fully biodegradable. The design of the bottles are nice too, slim so they are easy to grasp in the shower even if you have small, wet, slippery hands. However, the price! Here in Sweden I could get three bottles of decent smelling, decent working shower gels for the price of one small bottle. I will not knock a star for that, however, because... I love this shower gel, for so many reasons. First of all the scent. The Lemon & Thyme scent is a rather masculine/unisex scent that lingers slightly on your skin if you do a quick rinse and refresh, for example after a workout. Secondly, it claims to be gentle and non drying. Many soaps and gels do, such as TBS old version of shower gels, but this really holds up to the claim. After showering with this, by skin is clean, soft and not at all irritated. Usually, after a shower, my skin is all blotchy and I break out in rashes but not with this. Thirdly, a little goes a loooong way. Even when just lathering up with my hands, about the amount of an ordinary stamp was enough to clean my entire body, including between the toes. Now, I don't usually lather up soaps, just smooth them on, rub my hands over the skin and rinse so I don't know how this one lathers (blind as a bat in the shower) but personally, I'm satisified since I smell nice and feel clean and fresh and soft. Overall, worth trying if you are looking for an eco-conscious, kind to your skin shower gel. Especially when they have them on offer (the current deal here is buy two, get one free).
This oil cleanser on its own is a rather thick thing, that is hard to massage properly into the skin without using a lot. I much prefer a more liquid oil cleanser. To achieve this, I mix it 50/50 with the much thinner one, and the result is a perfect cleansing oil. Just the right consistency to be massaged into the skin (and eye area) easily, gets make-up off like a dream (even waterproof), and it rinses right off with water. Though, I prefer to use a muslin cloth just to be sure.
Treatments -Aussie - New 3 Minute Miracle Reconstructor
JulesGrey 3/15/2011 8:31:00 AM
As a weekly deep conditioning treatment I rather like this, but as a three minute miracle cure? Not so much. If you have hair that is about as dry as Sahara, do pick up a bottle of this on your way home and the moment you step through that front door wet your hair and apply a generous amount of this and wrap it up in a towel or something. Let it be for an hour or two like that, then wash it out and follow with your ordinary conditioner. Used like this, it is a marvel in a bottle. It leaves my hair so soft, and moisturised, and well behaved, and easy to style. Oh, and so shiny and healthy and bouncy and full of volume. The problem is, you really do need to follow it up with some kind of conditioner that gives a bit of slip to your hair or you will end up with hair that is sort of...not dry, nor exactly sticky, but more like...rubbery. I guess that is the best way to describe it. Rubbery. It doesn't always happen, but sometimes it does. Mainly when I use lukewarm water to wash it out with. With warm water, it seems to give better results. As a three minute cure? Worthless. Literally. The oils in it does not have time to do their magic in so little time. Nor does it coat your hair in slippery goodness, to at least fake it. No. It is just washing money down the drain using it like this, especially on tailbone length, fine hair that needs a lot of it. So, as a deep treatment to give back shine and moisture I do recommend this. Just remember to wash it out with warm, almost hot water, and to follow up with a lighter conditioner afterwards to give your hair some slip so you can brush it. Don't buy it as a three minute miracle cure...for that, you generally do need something that is very heavy on the silicones instead. Price wise it is on the expensive side for what it is and the result. Some pure safflower and jojoba oil pretty much works the same, put a few drops of your favourite oil based perfume into the oil mixture and voila. Much cheaper. Though, I find this does not weigh my hair down as much as a real deep oil treatment can. As for the packaging, I find it annoying it does not have a proper cap, but rather a rubber lined hole through which the product is squeezed. Since I use this only once a week, if even that, I would like something that really shuts securely. Plus, I tend to prefer tubs of some reason for deep hair treatments. Mainly because it is easier to get every last ounce out of them. On a parting sidenote, this smells SO NICE. Really nice and sweet. And the scent lingers and lingers and lingers until I wash my hair again.
This mask works best when you first do a deep oil cleansing session, and then apply this to still slightly damp and moist skin. Then hop in the shower, to shave and all that, while it dries. Then, to rinse it off once it has dried (about 10-15 minutes) wet your hands and pat them over your face until the mask is moist again. Then start rubbing it in like you would a cleanser, wetting your hands over and over, as the mask comes off gently, without tugging. Finish off with a bit of your oil cleanser and wipe it off with a muslin cloth. Hurry now, to apply a hydrating mist, your favourite hydrating serum and your lotion. Result? Soft, soft, soft, dewy, glowy wonderful skin. All your blackheads might not be gone in one session, but with continued use once a week (no more, since it might cause problems with burning etc. which is true of most clay masks) and paired with regular oil cleansing this is perfect. Without the oil cleansing, to loosen clogs before use so the clay mask can pull them out, it is significantly less effective at removing black heads etc. But then, again, that is true of most masks. Preparing your skin is key. I really like the texture of this mask, and it is one of the reasons I prefer this over my own home-made green clay mask. It will sound gross, but it is slightly slimy, as if you mixed runny clay with a little bit of gelatin. This means it goes on absolutely smoothly and covers well and that a little really goes a long way. I think for my whole face and neck I use less than a teaspoon. You have to work fast though, when applying this, since it dries fast. The reason I only give this a four is the price. It is VERY pricey and so even if I like it well enough, and could imagine it as a staple, I'll continue looking once I run out of this for a similar mask at a lesser price.
Skincare - Face -Liz Earle - Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish
JulesGrey 2/27/2011 7:19:00 AM
I really, really, really want to love this because I've heard so many good things about it, but alas...I don't know. Ever since I started using this, my skin has cleared up completely. Really, that part is amazing. But here is why I don't really love this cleanser: First of all, the texture is all too thick and it sinks into my skin all too fast, which makes it rather hard to massage it into my skin to dissolve things like make-up and clogs. I find I need two full pumps to really be able to massage it into my face, which means I go through a bottle very quickly. Hence, it becomes rather expensive since I would need about a full size bottle a month. Secondly, I bought this as an all-in-one cleanser and it does not work as an eye make-up remover for me. Eye shadow comes right off, true, and my mascara melts away but the true test is my Blacktrack Fluidline from Mac, which this does not remove. At least not without all too much tugging for my liking. In fact, after a few minutes of gently wiping at my eye with the washcloth and massaging in some more of this I just reached for my trusty oil cleanser, which gets rid of the eye liner just like that. On the plus side, this does not break me out nor does it dry out my skin, but I'm feeling as if my much cheaper moisturiser would work about the same as this, considering it needs to be washed away with a wash cloth. Right now, I'm using one pump of this cleanser together with one pump of my trusty oil cleanser and like it much better like this. The texture becomes right, it does not just dry on my skin when I'm massaging it into it (massaging is key with cream and oil cleansers, to really dissolve clogs) and it washes off more easily without as many passes with the cloth. And well, my skin seems to like it, since it is as clear as it has ever been. Still, I keep coming back to the fact that I need to mix this with another cleanser to make it work, and the fact that I need quite a lot of it...I will probably repurchase, since my skin is absolutely clear using this, but I will probably stray every now and again in hope of finding the true all-in-one that does not smell and feel like foot cream. Oh, and why is the packaging not see-through?! I HATE it when skincare packages are not see-through because it makes it MUCH harder to know when you need to re-order if you like a product.