Misc Beauty Tools -Clarisonic - Pro Skincare Brush
WriterGal82 12/31/2008 5:34:00 PM
This brush has been a major lemming of mine for quite some time, but I could never bring myself to cough up the bucks for it, without knowing how I'd like it. I finally gave in for the Beauty.com 20% off sale - between the discount, no tax, free shipping (and a credit I had on my account), I got it for a great deal. My skin has been a challenge lately, as I've been dealing with an unusual amount of pimples - something I never even experienced as a teenager. So I was really hoping for a miracle with the brush. After I first used it, I couldn't believe how smooth my skin felt. Within a week, I noticed that my clogged pores on my nose and around my cheeks were literally gone. I've never been able to unclog those porse before. I've now been using it for a month and a half, and I still have had some breakouts. But I think part of that is due to still struggling to find a HG cleanser. What I can say is that between the brush and DDF 5% benzol peroxide, the pimples are going away much faster than they ever used to. And, in the spots where the breakouts have now gone away, the red marks left behind seem to be improving/fading with time after using this brush - I'm not using any other product to fade the marks, so I'm confident the brush is what's doing it. I'm also confident that in 6 months of using the brush, my skin may very well be in really amazing condition. I think this is a tool that you need to be patient with, and with the early progress I've seen in my skin, I can't wait to see how it will look a year from now. Sure, it's a pricey product, but I figure that the money is worth having great skin. UPDATE: I've been using this for a good six months now and what a difference it's made. My skin has never been so clear, so soft, so flawless. I think a key part of my experience has been finding my HG cleanser (Paula's Choice Skin Balancing Cleanser) and using a BHA product (Paula's Choice 2% BHA Gel). But whatever is doing it, I'm absolutely hooked. Yes, I still get a blemish or two now and again. But I feel like the texture of my skin is so much better than ever before. You definitely should give the Clarisonic a try. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised with the results.
Get out your skunk brushes, this is one pigmented blush! I ordered this on the recommendation of some people on the board. Honestly, I was a little nervous it would be too bright for me, but I bit the bullet and tried it after looking at some pics in the MUA gallery of other people wearing. (I actually bought the 187 at the same time because I knew I'd need a good skunk to pull this one off!) I was not disappointed! Granted, the first time I tried it on, I ended up looking like a clown, even though I used my 187. But I've learned a few tricks after wearing it a couple times. I barely have to tap the tips of brush on the pan to pick up color, and I always lightly swipe the brush across the back of my hand before I go near my cheeks. But when I use those two techniques, I end up with the same exact flush I get naturally after a workout. It's a beautiful raspberry color with a hint of gold. With the right application, this blush gets an A+, but I suppose it's not for the makeup novices :)
Holy expensive blush, Batman! But I tell you what, this is the most beautiful, subtle blush! I was a little hesitant to get it at first, because when I swatched it in the store, it really didn't show up on my hand. The blush is a light pink/beige/nude, and is so gorgeous. So based on a ton of raves on the board, and the gorgeous color, I had to try it. I'm a LLL (bordering on PPP in the winter), and this gives the most natural flush. I do tend to layer it on, since I'm used to using pretty bright blushes, but the color is just perfect on my cheeks. There is a *very* slight shimmer to it, but definitely not OTT. I love wearing this with a smokey eye, when I don't want to have too much other color on my face. I will definitely buy this again when I run out, which I surely will, eventually!
Mascara -Shiseido - The Makeup Mascara Base [DISCONTINUED]
WriterGal82 11/21/2007 1:13:00 PM
When I first got this, I wasn't quite sure how to use it. My first approach was to apply it and let it dry before putting on my mascara. Big mistake. My lashes were super crunchy and it was nearly impossible to apply mascara. This base is meant to be wet when you apply your mascara. So I apply the base after curling my lashes, and almost immediately, I apply mascara. I have no problem putting on multiple coats of mascara over the base. The base is the only thing that can really keep a curl in my lashes, but I have to say that it's such a pain in the butt to remove my mascara when I use the base. I have to use an oil-based remover - nothing else takes it off completely! The only other thing to note is that I just used up one tube and loved every second of it. I recently got a replacement tube, and I don't seem to love it as much as I used to. So perhaps the old tube was a little more dried out than this new tube is, and it will get better with time. I'm not giving up on it by any means, but if I don't see improvement by the time the tube is gone, I might try another base. But all-in-all, I do think this is great stuff if your lashes are stubborn and don't hold curl well.
Eye Shadow -Laura Mercier - metallic creme eye colour - platinum
WriterGal82 11/21/2007 1:06:00 PM
This is a very pretty shimmery champagne color on me. The cream formula doesn't crease at all (but then again, I use UDPP). This was the first metallic LM e/s I tried, and I will definitely buy some more of the colors. I probably won't repurchase this one in particular, as it's too similar to my MAC Stilife paint, which is much cheaper. But I do like the formula itself. I just use my finger to apply and it works great.
I got this from Sephora, when they started carrying a limited selection of Shu Uemura. It was my first Shu shadow and I had seen so many gorgeous EOTDs using them, so I was totally stoked to try this. I have to say, I wasn't terribly impressed. There's barely any pigmentation. The color is very pretty, though the taupe has some definite green undertones that may not be flattering on everyone. I do like the shadow, despite the lack of pigmentation - but I only use it if I want something very subtle. However, I do remember someone saying that the Shu shadows carried by Sephora aren't as good of quality as normal. So maybe that's the issue. Regardless, if you're looking for a super pigmented taupe, I wouldn't suggest this one.
I'm in love with this blush. It's the most beautiful peachy color with a hint of pink, and just the right amount of shimmer. This replaces Cargo The Big Easy as my go-to everyday blush. I'm very neutral toned, and this works perfectly for my skin tone. And you have to love the pigmentation of NARS blushes - I barely have to use any product to get the perfect color on my cheeks. I will definitely hit pan on this one, and will keep buying for sure!
Bronzers -Becca - Pressed Bronzing Powder - Flamenco
WriterGal82 11/21/2007 12:29:00 PM
During the Sephora Becca frenzy, I picked this bronzer up for $8. I didn't know what to expect, in terms of color, since I ordered online. I could never use this bronzer in the summer, because I'm much darker then, but this is the perfect winter bronzer for me. I wear this every day over foundation in the fall/winter. It adds just enough bronze to look natural - I don't look like I'm wearing bronzer, i just look healthy! Even though I got this for a steal, I will probably repurchase at the full price, since my NARS Laguna is too dark for winter wear. For reference, I'm not sure of my MAC shade, but I wear N3 in Alima, Gentle Ivory in Chanel Teint Innocence, and Light in BE.
This is a very pretty shimmery peachy-pink color. It's great as a wash, and I actually also love it paired with MAC Trax. However, I do have to rant at the fact that the eye shadow is so fragile! I lost a small chunk out of the side of the pan, just from normal use with a brush! I can't imagine what would happen if I ever dropped it! Even with the indestructible packaging, I think it could shatter. I got this shadow during the Sephora Becca frenzy for $5. Would I pay full price for it again? Probably not. While I do love the color, I don't like the fact that it's so fragile in the pan.
Highlighters -Becca - Gypsy Pressed Shimmer Powder
WriterGal82 11/21/2007 12:15:00 PM
This is a very sheer, but very beautiful, highlighter. I had hoped I could wear it by itself as a blush, but it's a touch too light for that - at least for my preference. However, the gold shimmer in the powder looks amazing on your cheeks, so I like to layer it over another light blush. I got this during the Sephora Becca frenzy, so I only paid about $8 for it. While I think it's a gorgeous color and a beautiful highlighter, I don't know if I'd buy it again at the full price. So I'll ration what I have. I do have a huge rave for the indestructible packaging - I've dropped this several times, and it's never broken because the packaging is like Fort Knox!
I gave into the MUA hype and picked up an obnoxiously large, bright orange tube of this stuff. I'm a fan of rubberized bristles (I own LE, VE, MFVC and Inimitable) so I had to at least try it out. At $8.49, it was pricey for Cover Girl. But at least it's cheaper than Inimitable, I reasoned. The ginormous tube is terribly hard to use. Every time I use it, I feel as though I'm going to drop it on myself, and it's very awkward. The brush itself is probably double the thickness of LE. I'm a fan of fat brushes in general, so that's not a big deal to me. But those who hate thick wands may not like this. As far as the formula, it's pretty wet, but dries quickly. It goes on nicely and gives me decent length and separation. When the product is completely dry, it doesn't flake or smudge, but it does make my lashes feel pretty crunchy. Overall, it's not bad, but I don't think it's living up to the hype. Plus, it doesn't work well with the Shiseido base (talk about clump city!), and for that reason, I'd much rather use Inimitable than Lash Blast.
Highlighters -Clinique - Up-Lighting Liquid Illumintor
WriterGal82 7/12/2007 3:42:00 PM
We all like to talk about the Holy Grail of makeup products. But when someone says to you, “You look glowing,” that’s like the Holy Grail of compliments. Clinique’s Up-Lighting Liquid Illuminator helps give you that glowing look that's bound to get tons of compliments. It has an almost runny consistency, yet it’s very blendable, and the subtle shimmer gives you the perfect “I-just-got-it-on-with-Johnny-Depp” glow. I have the Natural shade and I love to mix a couple drops with liquid foundation or tinted moisturizer for an all-over glow. I also apply it on my cheekbones, nose and forehead before I put on my MMU. I've even tried making my own undereye brightener by mixing a bit with my concealer (it works, but an actual undereye brightener probably works better). I'd also love to get the Bronze shade because it would be awesome for summer.
Eye Primer -Urban Decay - Eyeshadow Primer Potion - Original (UDPP)
WriterGal82 7/12/2007 3:35:00 PM
What I hate most about eyeshadow is how it inevitably will end up creeping up into the crease of your eyelid, leaving an unsightly line. That all changed when I discovered Urban Decay's Primer Potion. I happened upon this product by utter and complete chance (and thank God I did!). My mom ordered my Christmas present from Sephora, complete with a free sample gift bag - 8 or 9 samples, including the Primer Potion. I was slightly skeptical about the primer when I saw it in the bag. Pssshhht, I thought, I've used primers before, and they never work as well as they say they do. The next morning, I gave it an obligatory try. By the end of that day, I was in awe. My shadow was in still in place, crease free, looking as lustrous as it did when I applied it 12 hours prior! By the end of the week, I was a proud owner of the full-size version! If you wear eyeshadow, I strongly urge you to try this product. At $15, it's not going to bankrupt you. Your eyeshadow will never look better. And a little tip - when you think you've run out of the product, use a pliers to take off the plastic stopper. There is tons more product in the bottom, but when the stopper is in place, the wand isn't long enough to reach it. This way, you can get a couple more months out of the tube!
This is my HG bronzer. It's the first bronzer I've used that gives me that natural tan color, rather than an orangey hue. In the summer, my skin is tan enough that I can apply it liberally with a kabuki. However, in the winter, I'm much paler and even though I can't paint it on like in the summer, I still think it's fabulous for perking up my pale complexion. Some people say it's too shimmery but I disagree. You do see some shimmer in the pan, but once applied, the shimmer is not apparent at all. I will continue to buy this!
This is my HG day-to-day blush. It's a perfect peachy-pink shade that gives me a realistic, natural flush. It's pretty pricey for a blush, in my opinion, but I will definitely continue to repurchase (and repurchase and repurchase). However, I think that if you have medium/dark skin, you should probably avoid it. I wear BE in Light (also see my pics for reference) and it's perfect for me. I'd say someone a shade or two darker could get away with it, but it is pretty light.