Primer/ Corrector -Cover Girl - Simply Ageless Corrector
Olom 4/24/2013 7:55:00 PM
I've suffered from dark undereye circles since childhood (damn genetics) and have had no luck (so far) in getting rid of, or at least, reducing the appearance of them. From past experience, I'm not a big fan of concealers - throughout the years, I've tried different drugstore concealers and if it wasn't buying the wrong colour 90% of the time that would put me off from using them, it was the fact that they would melt off my face, settle into lines (making it look like I had wrinkles), and/or my eyeliner would run down and "stick" to the concealer, making my dark circles look worse. I decided to try this product because I've once again become self-conscious of my dark circles - even with a decent creme foundation, they are still quite visible and probably more so when in natural sunlight. I saw this product on the CoverGirl website and researched it further on here and decided to give it a shot. I bought this corrector at Shoppers Drug Mart for CDN $11.99 but didn't buy a concealer to put over it because I thought I should try this out first, see how I like it. And the verdict is: LIKE IT! This product acts as an amazing base and I agree with other reviewers that's it's a good highlighter... it goes on SO smooth and a little goes a long way, the price isn't so bad once you take that into account. I put this on after my face primer has dried up a bit and then put on my foundation a few minutes later, waiting for it to "settle". The colour is universal, I suppose... it's WAY lighter than my skin tone but it is meant to be worn UNDER concealer/foundation and the foundation I use (Revlon New Complexion One-Step Compact Makeup in Medium Beige) does a great job of blending this… the corrector doesn't even "wipe off" too much when you're blending it and putting powder over it (which is a big problem for me). Aside from my dark circles, I also dab this onto spider veins and red spots on my face so that my problems areas are less visible - not 100% concealed but a noticeable difference for me compared to not using this. I can't wait to find a decent concealer to try with this. The only complaint I have with this is packaging - I would prefer a "flip" top instead of a screw on top. People interested in this might also want to buy a concealer brush or something so you're not constantly putting your fingers into the container. Keep it as bacteria-free as possible!
Treatments -Nature's Gate - Light Switch Lemon Brightening Serum for Day and Night
Olom 12/15/2012 11:16:00 PM
I'm always on the hunt for affordable "brightening" products and found this at Winners for CDN $12.99. I've only used it once so far but am planning on employing it as a face and neck treatment 3-4 nights a week when I give my skin a break from a Neutrogena retinol treatment. I think the price is fair for the amount of product in the bottle - it's 1.1 fl oz (32 mL) and 3-5 pumps will suffice to cover both face and neck but I must say, the texture is kind of weird and... startled... me when I pumped that first pump. It's the texture of spit. The smell is nice though, very pleasant citrus scent. I will update as I continue to use this.
Lip Treatments -Maybelline - Baby Lips in Cherry Me
Olom 12/3/2012 9:40:00 PM
I bought Baby Lips for the sole purpose of comparing it to my favourite tinted lip balm so far, Nivea Fruity Shine in Cherry. I don't remember how much Baby Lips set me back but I doubt there was a huge price difference (and, like Fruity Shine, there is a lot of product so it will last you awhile). The moisturizing properties aren't that different either but the colour is WAY more vibrant than Fruity Shine - too vibrant for my taste. You only need one application of this to see the "cherry" on your lips, any more applications will make you look like a clown (just sayin'). The packaging I don't care for too much - I had this in my pocket, leaned up against a countertop, and the bottom twisty part cracked so the lid doesn't fit properly anymore. I've always dropped this on the floor more times than I can count and the lid flies off. So overall, decent moisturizer for the lips but I wouldn't wear it out in public.
Lips -Nivea - nivea acai berry and wild apple lip smoothie
Olom 12/3/2012 9:32:00 PM
I was intrigued by this lip balm since I really like Nivea's Fruity Shine in 'Cherry' which is my favourite tinted lip balm so far. I purchased Nivea Lip Smoothie at Shoppers Drug Mart for CDN $4-5, which is a few dollars more costly than Fruity Shine but since I only ever use Fruity Shine, I wanted to have some variety in what I use on my lips, a different tint perhaps. Also, they give you A LOT of product so it will last maybe 2 months if you use it multiple times a day, everyday. While I find the moisturizing properties the same as Fruity Shine (which I rate as 'sufficient' since I don't have a big problem with chapped lips), the colour/tint/whatever isn't visible as I imagine it would be on other people... I'm guessing it should be a sheer, somewhat shiny light pink but after application, my lips just look like I put on a thin coat of clear lip gloss (which I'm not too ecstatic about since my lips are a bit dark for my face, especially my upper lip which has some discolouration). I guess I'm looking for a more dramatic colour that may "hide" my true lip colour and discolouration more. So for lip colour purposes I would not purchase this again and will use it for just a night lip balm. I also dislike the packaging of these balms in general (Fruity Shine included) - one clumsy hand, and as soon as this thing hits the floor, the lid will go flying off.
Styling Products -Dove - Style+Care Extra Hold Hairspray (Extra Strong Hold)
Olom 6/29/2012 4:01:00 PM
I just realized that everytime I use this product, it leads me to a sneezing fit! Do not buy. Ever. It doesn't even "hold" hair well and it leaves a white residue which is especially visible when you have dark hair!
I have the waterproof version of this mascara. Overall, this product is good. I've been using Cover Girl's Lash Exact Waterproof Mascara for a few years and it has been my favourite but I think I like this Maybelline mascara more (although there are some negatives to the product). The mascara is very clumpy so if you're not careful, I bet this can really hurt if you get it in your eye! Before applying a coat to my lashes, I scrape the wand against the tube to get rid of excess mascara - if I didn't, I'm pretty sure I would have clumpy spider lashes. This mascara helps in slightly elongating and thickening my lashes so I'm happy. I get smudges under my eyes after awhile but I'm not sure if this is from the mascara or my eyeliner. I got this at Wal-Mart for less than CDN $10.
Scrubs -Neutrogena - Oil-Free Acne Wash pink grapefruit foaming scrub
Olom 5/9/2012 5:32:00 PM
So I bought this scrub since Grapefruit Cleanser was out of stock, which is what I usually use on my face and body. At first, everything was fine - if anything, it worked slightly better since it exfoliated my face at the same time. And then, something awful happened: One of those tiny beads got into my eye!!! I could barely open my eye to rinse it out, it was so red and teary, and my eyelid even started to swell! I literally spent like two hours trying to get the damn thing out. The little beads are actually a whitish/clear colour so you can't really see where it is in your eye, you can just feel it! Needless to say, will not buy again. Perhaps the beads should be able to degrade?
Primer/ Corrector -Almay - Smart Shade Perfect & Correct Primer
Olom 5/8/2012 12:02:00 AM
I've been only using this primer for three days and I think I like my old primer more (Quo Total Perfection Face Primer) - but it's too soon to tell so I will update in a few weeks. I was looking for a different primer because Quo has silicones in it (I think this causes me acne) and I also wanted something a bit cheaper (less than $20 CDN). I first heard of Almay Smart Shade Perfect & Correct Primer from a commercial and researched it - while it does contain silicone derivatives, they're not the top three ingredients (I think! Quo has silicones in the top two). I found this at Shoppers Drug Mart for about $18-20 CDN. The purple and green really don't do what they're supposed to - they neither brighten the skin or hide redness; it also seems to take more time to absorb into the skin (I have to wait AT LEAST 10 min before applying my creme foundation); and even after applying my foundation, my skin still has that sticky, layered feeling and my face looks shiny! To be fair though, I really think I have to use this longer since Quo had the same effects when I started using it. Maybe my skin just needs to get used to the product first? On the good side, I like the pump applicator, less than one pump of the product is enough to cover my entire face (so this goes a long way), and it's about $4 cheaper than Quo. UPDATE: Okay, so giving this primer more time, I think I will make it my main one and not go back to Quo. To reduce that sticky feeling and the shine (especially on my forehead), I only need to use HALF a pump of this primer to cover my entire face (trust me, it's enough). Letting the primer absorb for at least 10 minutes, I use toilet paper to gently blot my T-zone in order to get rid of any excess product and face oiliness. This helps greatly!
I wanted to try a different translucent powder than the one I've been using for the past few months (Marcelle Pressed Powder) because I'm not 100% happy with it. I used to use Sephora's Tricks of the Trade Blotting Pressed Powder but I think it's discontinued (it was a bit pricey for me, as well). While this Physician's Formula product isn't exactly affordable for me either, I decided to give it a try because if I ended up liking it, I could easily get it anywhere instead of going out of my way to go to Sephora. Anyway, I have a natural medium tan with a yellow undertone and after using this translucent powder for just two days, I believe it is too orange for my skin - after applying just once, my face looks half a shade darker. So imagine reapplying this throughout the day multiple times (which I tend to do with all translucent powders I use) - my face would end up looking too tanned, I think. I actually prefer something more "chalky-looking" as it adds a tad bit of brightness to my complexion. The powder itself is kind of messy for being a pressed powder - little particles become loose easily and can get on clothing when applying. The packaging is too bulky and the little brush the compact comes with is useless (I prefer using a kabuki/powder brush). And the smell is kind of strange - none of my pressed powders smelled like this. And I think this gave me a few small whiteheads! Hopefully the acne will clear up. I will continue to use this powder, maybe it will grow on me. UPDATE: I stopped using this powder awhile ago - it did not grow on me! I just find it too orange for my skin tone and I think it was giving me whiteheads. Any face powder I don't like, I usually keep it around for an eyeshadow base.
I've been using Boots No7 Age Defence Cleansing Balm for about 3-4 months now (pretty much once or twice everyday). I bought it to help lighten dark areas on my face and neck and, over time, to hopefully lighten my overall skin tone. When I use this, I pre-cleanse with a 2% acne cleanser or Alba Botanica's Pineapple Enzyme Facial Cleanser (the closest non-drying and affordable things I can find to an AHA cleanser). I generally do not like cream cleansers (or any cleanser close to this consistency) because I like cleansers that produce a lather... I feel more clean! The first time I bought this at Shoppers Drug Mart, it was on sale for about CDN $8-9. It's also still a great price, even if it's not on sale (about CDN $14-15). I'm not a fan of the packaging - the pump could be better since it can easily be knocked off and hard to put back on the bottle. I'm on my third bottle now and I'm just hoping it will do something for my stubborn skin!
I purchased Garnier's Skin Renew Clinical Dark Spot Corrector about 2 months ago at Wal-Mart (I don't remember the price but I believe it was CDN $12-$20) and I've been using it once a day (at night), three days a week (but every other day). I bought this after reading the reviews on here, hoping it would lighten dark areas on my face and neck (especially my under eye circles) and, hopefully, to eventually lighten up my overall skin tone. I haven't noticed a difference in this regard but it's only been two months and I don't use it everyday (my general rule of thumb is to use a product slowly at first, building up "tolerance" over time and then to use it for at least 3-6 months before I decide if it's actually doing anything for me). I do believe, however, this product is giving me whiteheads! I've read some of the reviews and apparently it's fairly common to get acne from this but I'm going to continue using it, hoping my skin will get used to it and go back to normal. I'm not a fan of the packaging (metal squeeze tube) since I prefer pump bottles but I guess it's the best packaging for the ingredients (apparently vitamin C goes bad pretty fast if not stored properly). I will update as I finish my first tube! UPDATE: I'm finished my first tube. I initially used this nights only for 3 days a week (every other day) but for the past 2 weeks or so, I've been using it nights only for five days a week (Mondays through Fridays) and unfortunately I don't see any difference in my hyperpigmentation or overall skin tone. And it's still giving me more whiteheads than usual! I already bought another tube though so hopefully if I use this a little longer I will see a difference. *fingers crossed* UPDATE: I'm on my second (or third?) tube and I don't see any difference concerning my dark spots or anything else - except that I believe this product is still giving me a whitehead or two. For the past 3-4 months or so, I've been cleansing my skin with a papaya soap (which is supposed to exfoliate the skin) in hopes that the soap would help prep my skin for this product. I don't use Garnier as much as I used to anymore because of the whole acne thing, so I've been using this maybe 3 days a week (with days inbetween). On my "off" days, I will use 100% pure sweet almond oil as a moisturizer and have also incorporated a Neutrogena facial treatment (with retinol) when I'm not using Garnier or the almond oil. I'm just going to finish this tube and maybe find a better dark spot corrector. UPDATE: I think this is still contributing in giving me whiteheads, mostly in my T-zone area. I don't think this is the product for me - even if I exfoliated "properly," I'm convinced Garnier Dark Spot Treatment will not work in lightening up my dark circles and other areas on my face and neck because it only contains 5% high potency vitamin c (or whatever it's called) and I read that the ideal percentage is 10-20%. I still very much like the smell when putting this on my face and neck but the day after my hands have this weird odor. I guess I'll have to wait and save up money for a vitamin c treatment with a higher percentage or get the ingredients for a DIY one. This sucks!!!
Hair Styling Tools -Conair - Cord-Keeper Hair Dryer
Olom 2/29/2012 7:29:00 PM
UPDATE: DO NOT BUY this piece of crap hair dryer. Wish I bought that warranty now, the speed slider button detached from the main whatever-it's-called inside the hair dryer and I can't fix it since all the circuitry board thing is glued in front of it, blocking it! I was just drying my hair, lah di dah, and noticed that switch to turn it off was really loose. I didn't drop it, bang it against something, nothing! All of a sudden, poof! *sigh* Why do I always have bad luck with hair dryers? I wanted to go back to drugstore hair dryers after my $100+ Cricket one burned out on me (I've had it for only 2 years or so!). Found this Conair hair dryer at Wal-Mart for around $20... I didn't purchase a warranty because at the time I thought, "Who cares? It's only $20!" Plus my family has used Conair hair dryers and we still have one that's probably 10+ years old. I'm not looking for much in a hair dryer - just something that dries hair relatively quickly and comes with snap-on attachments and a long cord. After having used this everyday for the past month or so, it is VERY loud compared to my Cricket hair dryer (I had to use earphones to cut out some of the sound) but on the bright side, it's lightweight, easy to handle, and dried my hair fast. The "Cord-Keeper" feature comes in handy (the reason my old hair dryer burned out was because of the cord - it wore out and frayed from wrapping it around the hair dryer). WARNING: If you need to use hair dryer attachments (the Conair comes with a diffuser and concentrator), DO NOT BUY THIS HAIR DRYER! I used both attachments everyday and they barely "snap-on" anymore because the little plastic pieces broke off - I think some parts of the attachments cannot handle the heat of the hair dryer that they start to bend and soften and eventually fall off or get knocked off accidentally. They still kind of fit onto the hair dryer but I have to be careful not to accidentally bump them against my head since they will fall off onto the floor (and get more damaged).
Lip Treatments -Burt's Bees - Tinted Lip Balm - Hibiscus
Olom 1/25/2012 5:34:00 PM
This is the first tinted lip balm I've purchased. I hate reapplying coloured lip gloss when I'm on the go because it's messy and I always need a mirror to do it so I figured the next best thing is a coloured lip balm. The "Hibiscus" shade complements my skin tone well (medium natural tan) but I can't reapply it often since the colour will go on too dark - it's too bad since this product isn't very moisturizing (I usually carry a regular untinted lip balm because of this). I didn't understand the purpose of the packaging either - I thought the large tube the balm came in was a waste. And the price... well, I don't think CDN $7.99 is worth it because there's better tinted balms out there! My favourite tinted lip balm right now is Nivea's Fruity Shine (Cherry) for HALF the price and a nicer, slightly longer lasting colour. UPDATE: Eh, this lip balm isn't cutting it for me anymore - sometimes it looks great on my lips, other times you can barely see it (I have dark lips, so I want my lips to have a little bit of colour). Nivea is still my fave!
Skincare - Face -Unlisted Brand - NOW Sweet 100% Pure Almond Oil
Olom 1/6/2012 12:21:00 PM
I initially bought this product because I read the reviews on here that it lightens dark undereye circles and other hyperpigmentation which I have a problem with (I bought the smaller bottle at Sear's health food store which was about $5-6 CDN - great price). I went through my first bottle in less than a month though because I used it as an eye makeup remover and a face/body moisturizer as well, which turned out great! It leaves my skin looking healthy and glowing. I bought the bigger bottle (about $15-16 CDN) the second time around and am still on it. Although I have yet to see results concerning my hyperpigmentation, this oil is still a great alternative to expensive eye makeup removers and skin moisturizers! I also love how the bottles have UV light protectant. I think I am hooked on this. UPDATE: I've been using this oil for a few months now and while I haven't seen any changes concerning my hyperpigmentation, it's still a great multipurpose product that I will continue to buy. The only bad thing is that I've managed to find this in only one store in my area and they only carry like 2-5 big bottles at a time. I have to go out of my way to get this. :\
I've been researching tinted lip balms recently because it's a drag using coloured lip glosses when you're on the go - I need a mirror to apply it and it can be messy. I read some of the reviews on this product and was intrigued, so I got this at Wal-Mart for less than $6 CDN, I believe. It goes on nicely with a slight hint of colour and sheen, which suits my skin tone. You can reapply it and the colour doesn't make your lips look too dark. However, the moisturizing qualities don't last long - that's why I docked a point.