Pressed Powders -L'Oreal - True Match Super-Blendable Powder
ashmiaka 5/24/2013 11:20:00 AM
i am on my 2nd compact of this now. the first time i had this was a couple of wears ago and i used up the whole compact. i remembered loving it, so i repurchased this after i had gone through some of my other powders. i'm somewhere around NC20 (maybe slightly lighter) and got this in W1. the coverage of the powder is so sheer that it i feel that as long as i'm in the general vicinity of my shade range, i could get away with anything from W1-W3. i'm lucky enough to have pretty clear skin that i don't need much coverage so i use this mainly to even out my skin tone and to provide a matte dry smooth canvas for my blush. the powder is pretty compact and there isn't much powder kickup when i put my brush to it. that being said, it can be a little difficult getting enough product onto my brush (i use the ecotools big bronzing brush). the powder wears decently throughout the day (it's still there when i take my makeup off at night) and seems to look better after a few hours post application. it does get a little dewy by the end of the day but not in a bad way or more so than any other face powder. it doesn't appear to oxidize and it doesn't break me out, irritate my skin, or clog my pores. i love that it is a matte finish (no shimmer / glitter / sparkle whatsoever). the only big downside is that it is on the more expensive end of drugstore powders. overall, good product but nothing spectacular to write home about.
Sunscreen -Shiseido - urban environment uv protection cream
ashmiaka 5/20/2013 2:37:00 PM
i have this in SPF 35. i am an avid user of asian sunscreen and i wear sunscreen daily. overall i'm pretty on the fence about this product. i like that it's lightweight, doesn't feel heavy on the face, doesn't sting my eyes, feels moisturizing, and generally doesn't break me out. however, i found that i can't use it on my nose because it selectively clogs the pores on my nose and produces blackheads. because of that, my current sunscreen routine consists of 2 products - asian sunscreen (anessa in the gold bottle) for my nose and the shiseido urban environment sunscreen for the rest of my face. because the shiseido sunscreen is moisturizing, it smooths over any dry spots on my face and doesn't accentuate the dryness / flakiness that my anessa sunscreen occasionally does. that being said, i do find it excessive to need to put 2 different sunscreens on my face, given that i can easily remedy the occasional dry spot problem i have with my anessa sunscreen with some moisturizer underneath. other things i'm not so fond of with this sunscreen is the need to really rub it in as it will leave white streaks if not careful. it also gives a weird glow that is not quite dewy and not quite greasy. overall, i would stick to my asian sunscreens but wouldn't mind using this if i had a tube lying around. i wouldn't run out to get another tube the moment i finish it though.
i have this in 2 shades: fair and fair/light. fair looks to be pretty neutral (maybe slanting towards pinkish) in the pan while fair/light is distinctly yellow-toned. both work well for my NC20-25 skin tone. while this might not be the best powder foundation / pressed powder on the market, it is unquestionably the best @ its price (i scored each for $1.95 while it was 40% off at rite-aid. regular price $2.99 which still can't be beat). the powder is finely milled and does kick up some when i touch my brush to it. i personally don't mind since i prefer that over solidly compact powders that doesn't seem to pick up any product no matter how hard my brush is swirled in it. i found the best way to apply this is to dab my ecotools bronzer brush into the powder and press it gently onto my face. it evens my skintone nicely (i am lucky enough to not need much coverage). it doesn't cake up or irritate my skin and it wears well as well as helps my other face products (ie, blush) last throughout the day. i haven't experienced any noticeable oxidization or shininess throughout the day. by the end of the day there is a slight dewiness but nothing that looks oily or greasy. this is completely matte which i love since i absolutely detest sparkle/shimmer/glimmer/sheen in products i use all over my face as i have absolutely no aspiration to be a twilight cullen. i would repurchase this over and over no question!
Pressed Powders -Maybelline - NSTANT AGE REWIND® THE PERFECTOR POWDER
ashmiaka 4/4/2013 5:17:00 PM
this powder had such great potential... but unfortunately didn't quite cut it. i loved almost everything about it... it had good coverage (i have fairly clear skin so i don't need much covering), evened out my skin tone nicely, matched my complexion shade nicely, didn't cake up, didn't melt off, and minimized my pores. BUT it has shimmer! why maybelline, why?! i hate shimmer on my face (with the exception of highlighter, which i never really use)... and this one was particularly bad. under the sun, i looked like a cullen from twilight. i could actually see the sparkles dancing in the sunlight. and when i touch my face, i can see shimmer / glitter on my hands. not a look i want to be sporting.. ever. sadly, i will be returning this to the store.
Foundations -Cover Girl - Outlast Stay Fabulous 3 in 1 Foundation
ashmiaka 2/22/2013 11:27:00 PM
i'm about NC20-ish with normal-dry skin. my skin is generally pretty clear with slight redness in my cheeks.. so i use foundation to basically even out my skintone on days when i want to look more polished. i had this in the shades classic ivory (more pinky) and nude beige (more yellow) and both shades matched decently.
i found that this foundation provided a light-med coverage that was enough to even out my skintone overall but didn't quite cover the redness in my cheeks. it was pretty lightweight and didn't have the sticky / tacky feeling that makes me feel like i'm going to breakout instantaneously. it also didn't require me to use a powder to set before applying blush. flip side was that it could some times look a little cakey and for some reason my skin felt drier than normal after using this foundation for a few consecutive days. however, my ultimate dealbreaker was that it seemed to settle into the pores on and around my nose.. accentuating them (when they were previously not so visible) no matter how much i blended or how i applied it. that is not a look i want to sport around town. that being said, this is not a problem unique to this foundation for me. overall, i found this to be a decent foundation but not for me due to the pores issue.
i have tried both the waterproof and non-waterproof formula for this... and neither of them impressed me much. given the name of this mascara, i expected it to add at least some volume to my lashes.. but that wasn't the case at all for either versions. the non-waterproof version did add more volume than the wp version... but in a clumpy unattractive sort of way that also weighed down previously curled lashes unevenly making them look haywire. the wp version held the curl decently... but provided no real volume, though it did do an acceptable job of separating my lashes. i did find some smudging after 5-6 hours but no flaking. both versions were easy enough to remove, but a pain to apply. the bristles on the brushes were pointy... and no matter how gently or carefully i tried to apply the mascara, the wand poked at my lash line. given the short of expectation results i got from this mascara, i found the pain to be totally unnecessary and unworthy. i still give it a 3 rating because the wp version is usable, albeit painfully so literally.
Treatments (Eye) -Kiehls - Creamy Eye Treatment with Avocado
ashmiaka 2/22/2013 1:01:00 AM
this feels no different from applying my daily / nightly moisturizer under my eyes. as far as i can tell, there are no special properties (such as anti-wrinkle, anti-aging, depuffing) to set this apart from a normal moisturizer. the consistency is thick but goes on easily and doesn't cause milia. my biggest gripe is that it some times seems to cause my eyes to feel tired / dry about 10 minutes after application. i only apply this right before bed so it's not a massive inconvenience, but i do wonder if it could be slightly harmful to my eyes. overall, meh product. i got a sample packet which has lasted me about a month (you only need the smallest amount each use) but will not be purchasing the full size when i'm done.
i found this mascara to perform no better than a $2 mascara... which suffices to say i'm sorely disappointed considering this one costs $28. i didn't find that this added any significant volume to my lashes (which is what this mascara is marketed to do) although it did clump a few of my lashes together. it did seem to add a smidgen of length and it did make them appear blacker though. however, it also took the curl out of my lashes unevenly and left some looking as if i didn't bother to curl my lashes at all. then, to add insult to injury, it began to flake almost instantly after application, then graduated to smudging after 3-4 hours. it's a unimpressive no go for me.
i have normal-dry skin, am NC20-25, and generally have a clear face with some redness on my cheeks. i bought this in 130 shell.
130 shell seems to be a decent color match, though not exact. the coverage on me is pretty inconsistent... i find it to be light-medium coverage on my cheeks (not quite covering the redness in my cheeks), but medium-full coverage everywhere else on my face easily evening out my skintone. however, i do struggle with it near my undereye area where the foundation makes it look a little unnatural. also, for some reason, it seems to accentuate the pores around my nose but doesn't quite cover the tip of my nose fully.
the foundation is quite liquidy and spread easily enough on my face. i don't need much at all for a full face (maybe dime-quarter size). i found that using my fingers provide the most natural look (i've also tried using it with the sigma F80 andRT expert face brush). once applied, the foundation has a slight tacky / sticky feel to it but it doesn't feel heavy. it does, however, require a setting powder before applying blush and/or bronzer. there is also a slight dough / flour scent to the foundation which i don't like but doesn't really bother me either. it seems to wear fairly well and is matte. when i wear this, i do look like i have makeup on, but it doesn't look heavy or mask-like. my biggest problem with this foundation is that i have a sneaking suspicion that it causes me to break out a little, seeing as every time i wear this foundation a new zit pops up somewhere on my face. that is a dealbreaker for me.
Pressed Powders -Revlon - Nearly Naked Pressed Powder
ashmiaka 1/27/2013 4:02:00 PM
Unfortunately i found this powder to be nothing special. i have this in 2 shades: 010 fair and 020 light. i'm about NC 20-25 and i wear 130 shell in the revlon nearly naked liquid. 010 fair is a much better match than 020 light which is too dark. for me, this powder can only be used as a setting powder atop liquid foundation and not on its own as powder foundation. i tried it on its own and it looked quite awful... covering nothing, accentuating every little imperfection, and making my whole face look patchy. my face looked loads better without this on. when i use it as a setting powder, it seems to do ok but it does accentuate imperfections (again) and dry spots. it also leaves behind a powdery appearance especially clinging to the dry spots on my face. however, as the day goes on, the powder seems to oxidize a bit and fades away... leaving my face with a slightly oily / greasy (not glowing) appearance which i do not care to sport around town. for reference, i have normal - dry skin. i'm not impressed and it will be returned to the store.
I got a sample of this test out and am so glad I didn't pay any money for this. At best it did nothing for the skin around my area. I actually suspect it dried out my undereye skin. Can eye serums even do that? The serum comes out gel like.. feels moisturizing at first, smooths on easily and seems to absorb quickly. However, there was a distinctly unpleasant herbal mushroom scent that lingered for a long time. After using it for a few days, I noticed no difference in appearance around my eyes, but the skin surrounding my eye felt noticeably drier than normal. This serum is the only thing I changed / added to my routine. Unfortunately this is a no go and my quest for an eye cream continues.
this is probably one of the better drugstore mascaras.. it holds a curl (this is huge when it comes to non-waterproof mascaras), defines, separates, and adds a bit of length to my lashes. my lashes also appear more full because the short bristles allow mascara to be applied to every lash, including the short puny ones. because of how well this mascara defines and separate every lash while holding a curl, my eyes really open up and my lashes look a bit doll-like. it doesn't smudge, flake, or disappear throughout the day and is easy to remove. my only gripe with it is that it's one of the more expensive drugstore mascaras.
tip: this mascara is really wet when first opened and easily overcoats the lashes on the first handful of applications, but if you give it a week or 2 to dry out, the formula becomes more easily workable. i don't even need a lash comb to achieve the look i want after the initial week or so.
when i first bought this and tried it, it felt waxy and not moisturizing at all. but after using it a handful of times, the initial "hard" layer came off and it started performing the way i expected it to. while i don't know how moisturizing it really is, it does keep my lips from drying out. i only use this at night before bed since it doesn't contain SPF and feels a little thick on the lips. there is a floral fragrance (i don't detect any milk or honey scent) which i dont' love but eventually got used to. so far i've used about 25% of this.. and just recently started noticing that as i press the balm on my lips to apply, it starts twisting down on its own. it's easily remedied by putting a finger on the bottom of the tube as i apply and not a big deal. i like this enough to keep using, but not enough to say i'd run out and repurchase when i run out.
Mascara -L'Oreal - Voluminous False Fiber Lashes~Waterproof
ashmiaka 12/23/2012 10:32:00 AM
this mascara is a drier / dry formula that doesn't seem to deposit much product onto my lashes making it necessary to do multiple coats to make it look like i'm wearing any mascara at all. but with each additional coat i added, it seems to distribute the product unevenly and it didn't seem to add much, if any, volume or length for me either. i also found this hard to remove... requiring me to reapply my eye makeup remover a few times to even begin taking off the mascara. and then when it finally started coming off, the fibers would get everywhere, including my eyes irritating them. it hasn't been the worst mascara i've ever used, but i definitely didn't enjoy it. i tried it for a month but it was a no go for me, and back to the store it went.
Lip Treatments -Jack Black - Intense Therapy Lip Balm spf 25
ashmiaka 12/21/2012 4:03:00 PM
this works great for intense hydration of extremely chapped lips! in addition to the cold weather, i've been sick for the last few days ... the combination turned my formerly smooth lips into a hot mess (chapping, peeling and flaking). i slapped some of this, and after one application my lips were back to being smooth! it goes on thick but doesn't feel heavy on the lips. it has SPF 25 for added sun protection but doesn't have any discernible sunscreen taste or texture. it comes in a sanitary squeeze tube with a slanted tip that makes it easy to apply. it comes in a variety of scents and has no color. my only little gripe is that as it fades on the lips, there can be some slight residue left behind... it doesn't show up visually, but if i swipe my hand across my lips, it comes off on the back of my hand. still, it doesn't bother me enough to stop using it. would repurchase this in a heartbeat.