I was hesitant to buy this because I thought it would be shimmery, but I wanted a new bronzer and wanted to try this b/c of all the Laguna hype. I'm glad I bought it! I have a pretty oily t-zone, but this bronzer doesn't make me look any oilier than I normally would. I find that it blends into the skin well, and doesn't look obvious. There is shimmer in the pan, but on the skin it has a satin finish. Out of the pictures at the top, the one to the right is most indicative of the color. It's a light golden brown with no red or orange undertones. I have red hair, freckles, and absolutely no ability to tan but this somehow looks natural on me.
This is a great place to keep your eyeshadows together and organized. However, one of my palettes broke at the clasp after a year of use.
As someone said below, this is not MAC quality. My other MAC brushes are sooo soft and nice, this one is really rough and actually hurts sometimes. I should have returned this, but I bought it online and was way too lazy about it. It's too big for blush, really. I prefer the 109, the 165, or the 168. Those are all very soft brushes that you can use to buff makeup in without scratching your face in the process. They are also smaller and allow for more precise application/blending. Do not buy the 129. If you want a bigger blush brush you could try the 134, it's expensive but you can use it for everything and it is extremely soft.
Fragrances -Aveda - Singular Note Vanilla Absolute
Steph84 10/5/2009 1:14:00 PM
WOW! This is the most natural vanilla scent EVER!!! It's made with vanilla beans and smells, well, like a vanilla bean! I really like the natural scent of vanilla but can't stand artificial vanilla scents (so pretty much every vanilla scent out there). I also can't stand when "vanilla" scents actually smell like cake or sugar cookies. This smells like vanilla extract without the alcohol (as someone said below). SO nice. The lasting power isn't as good as a parfum or an EDT but I don't care because I have never found a parfum or EDT that actually smells like vanilla. Oil is great way to apply the warm scent of vanilla and I like that it is moisturizing instead of drying like alcohol based scents. This also doesn't spill in my purse so you can take it with you to reapply.
I decided to write a review for this product today since I am about to go pick up my second bottle of this! My first bottle lasted about 4 or 5 months and there is a little bit left. I usually really don't like foundation and if I wanted to wear some, stuck to tinted moisturizer or some mineral powder. I decided that I liked the look but needed something lighter than tinted moisturizer (for days I didn't need a lot of moisture) and I wanted it in liquid form. This foundation is perfect for what I need. It covers up redness but you can still see my freckles (no "mask")! And I have combination skin which is very oily in the t-zone, very dry everywhere else, sometimes somehow oily AND dry in the t-zone. My skin is also SUPER sensitive, like I use lip balm and I get a rash. This has NEVER irritated my skin and is the perfect texture for my skin type. Yes, I do blot my t-zone about twice in a day, but I do that if I don't use any foundation too. I totally recommend this!
I've only had this for a few days but I thought I'd write a quick review since all the Illamasqua products are so new here in the US. I looked up a lot of pictures before I bought this and they made this blush look SO light, but I bought it anyway because of Sephora's description. It is a LIGHT pink, but not too light. The hue is warm with the slightest hint of coral. This is definitely NOT a blue based light pink so while it looks clean and fresh, it doesn't make the rest of my face look pale (like a blue based pink would). It is highly pigmented and applies very smoothly. If I could compare it to any blush (that I have) I would say it is most similar to Laura Mercier's Rose Petal, but Tremble is brighter and much more pigmented.
This product is so nice!!! I got my jar at Whole Foods, but you can also buy it online. The texture is similar to hard butter, but it scoops out easily and spreads on skin contact. It takes awhile to sink in (it's similar to a body oil). The testers in the store are nothing like the actual product. They have been opened/touched so often that the shea butter is hard and not as malleable as a new jar. The scent is hard to describe, it smells a little like Dr. Hauschka lip balm, if you happen to know what that smells like. The scent is not that pronounced--sort of a waxy nutty smell. I appreciate that this brand is free trade and will definitely buy again!
Highlighters -MAC - Mineralize Skinfinish in Soft and Gentle
Steph84 5/9/2009 10:45:00 AM
I originally bought this because in the pan, it looks like a peachy/bronzey/light gold color. I think I also gave into the MSF craze a little :-) Well when I got Redhead MSF I really changed my mind on this product, because I saw how nice MSFs can really be. I barely ever use this, and when I do it's because I'm forcing myself to. It shows up SILVER on me. Yes, silver. Not peachy, not bronze, not gold. It's very cool and stands out against my skin. Also, it's very frosty. Now, normally I like shimmery and frosty highlights for my face, but this is too much. WAYYY to much. If I could still return this, I would, but I may just use it for back to mac.
Toners -Mario Badescu - Glycolic Grapefruit Cleansing Lotion
Steph84 4/25/2009 12:16:00 PM
I wish I had read Stare_Girl's review before I tried this. Mario Badescu had sent me a bunch of samples, and I tried this toner first. As soon as it touched my skin it started to burn more than any other toner I have ever tried has ever burned before. I had to wash my face, and it still is burning. I would never touch this stuff again, and if you have sensitive skin stay far far away.
This blush is a bronzy peach with a slight, satiny sheen. It's SO natural anytime of the year and looks great with bronzer (blends well with a bronzer for a healthy glow). I would definitely buy this again--it pretty much just always looks "right" with my skintone!
I got this to wear exclusively as a blush-- It's coral, with a pink "glow". If I had to compare it to anything I'd say it was similar (though more coral) to MAC's Spaced Out Blush. I got it on beautycrunch for $7.20, definitely worth it!
I've had this brush for about a year. I haven't had any problems with shedding (maybe in the beginning?) but I do have problems with it bleeding dye EVERY time I wash it. Seriously how much dye could be in that thing? Besides that, I really like it! It's soft and extremely dense. I use it to apply mineral makeup and blot powder. The travel case is a great little extra, it's very easy to take with you.
I bought this b/c in the pan it looks like a great bronzer for fair skin-- no orange undertones, just a light brown. However it has NO pigmentation and it is very difficult to pick up on brushes. You can barely tell I have this on my face after about 10 layers (I tried that much just to see). I returned this and bought MAC's msf natural in medium dark to use as a bronzer instead. In the pan, the two products look to be about the same color, but MAC is much more pigmented.
Tinted Moisturizer -Laura Mercier - Tinted Moisturizer SPF 20
Steph84 2/23/2009 9:43:00 PM
*This review is for the original (not oil-free) version. The reviews for this products are all over the place, so I doubt any one review can really help anyone decide on this magazine fave! I've had this for about 6 months. When I first got it, I didn't like it that much and I put it aside for awhile. I picked it up again this winter and have been using it daily now. I have a very oily forehead and am dry or normal on the rest of my face. This moisturizes, never looks streaky, and never emphasizes dry areas like true foundations seem to do. This does not cover my freckles (which is good!) but DOES cover redness. I have tried applying with various brushes but I have found that it applies best with fingertips (and the MA at Blue Mercury told me that's what she uses too). I usually wear this by itself with some powder on my forehead, or with some extra sunscreen underneath. Occasionally I moisturize before I put this on. I have already repurchased once :-)
Eye Shadow -MAC - Femme-Fi from Neo Sci-Fi Collection
Steph84 2/9/2009 1:13:00 PM
My new favorite highlight!!! MAC should really make this one permanent, I think it fills a color niche they are missing in their perm line. Most MAC users swear by shroom, which I like, but it tends to turn pinkish on me by the end of the day so I don't use it that much anymore. Ricepaper can be too yellow, and vanilla pigment too frosty/unnatural. This is a soft, warm, creamy beige with a great texture. I'm really glad I got this!