Shampoo -Aquage - Sea Extend Strengthening Shampoo
breeps 3/19/2013 2:24:00 AM
I've frequently made the switch from redhead to high-lift blonde .. it's murder on my fine hair. This is one of the rare shampoos I've tried that gave back resilience to my hair. I struggle with breakage, lack of shine, and fallout, however many moisturizing/repairing lines are far too heavy for my hair texture. Sea Extend Strengthening has been my primary shampoo for the last year and it's kept my hair in great condition.
Keep in mind that this will not lather like low-end cleansers. My best recommendation would be to add more water. If I felt that I was starting to feel product buildup, I would shampoo twice. My chin length hair requires about a nickle-sized amount to work it through. Scent is amazing! The matching conditioner is very potent if used correctly. I see fewer split-ends and my hair maintains it's smoothness even after bleach-abuse. It will not dull/fade your color.
My only criticism (thus the 4 rather than 5 rating) is that I do need to use weekly treatments and daily leave-in conditioners to get the shiny, flowing, truly healthy looking result I demand .. But I'm platinum blonde, work in a salon, and I heat-style almost daily. This line would be all I needed if I wasn't so hard on my hair. Personally, I'm still on the lookout for my perfect match. The Davines Natural Tech Nourishing line is my newest conquest, but I will trust Sea Extend Strengthening always.
Treatments -Makeup Artist's Choice (MUAC) - Mandelic/Salicylic Peel
breeps 3/19/2013 1:55:00 AM
I purchased this peel from MUAC waaaaay back in 2010 so I'm assuming that it has lost some of it's effectiveness due to age. This may have been a benefit, however! I have dry, mildly sensitive, and very fair skin.
Originally I had purchased both the 25% Mandelic Acid Peel (didn't do much for me) as well as the Mandelic/Salicylic Peel. I used the 25% solution twice a week and gradually integrated the Mandelic/Salicylic Peel believing that I wasn't getting results. Eventually I switched entirely to the M/S Peel to my skin's dismay. After three peels my skin became very sensitive and I peeled painfully around my nose and chin. I stopped using the M/S peel immediately.
Fast forward 2.5 years and my skin had become lackluster. I've been having small breakouts, more clogging in my pores than usual, and my skin looked dull. I happened upon the Mandelic/Salicylic bottle and thought I would revisit it. Keeping my previous experience in mind, I have been doing light applications (leaving on only about 30 to 45 seconds or until I feel a slight tingle on my sensitive areas). Upon rinsing I do feel a burn, but my habit has been to pop into the shower and do my hair masque and body scrub for the week .. good distraction. After steaming I rub a touch of sweet almond oil over my skin and apply my regular moisturizer. I have not experienced any tightness or redness using this method.
Perhaps it's potency DID drop, but after three weekly quicky peels my skin looks better than it has in the last year! My skin texture and pore size has visibly refined. I will continue using the M/S peel but I plan to step it back to twice a month. Looking back, I feel that I just over-did this treatment originally .. Used in moderation I'm loving it! Those with very sensitive skin, be wary, but I'll be reordering a new bottle. Perhaps MUAC can supply me with a less concentrated solution this time!
I'm quite surprised with this gel cleanser's effectiveness! It seemed so pricey but I bought it promising myself that I would return it if I didn't see any results in two weeks. Two went by, then three and now I've been using this for over two months! High up on the ingredient list besides water and some thickening/slip inducing agents (which mixed with the gelatin in it make for a beautiful feeling on the skin) and lots of water-binding moisturizers (including glycerin) are:
lactic acid - AHA exfoliant
dipotassium glycyrrhizinate - licorice extract, anti-imflammatory
punica granatum extract - pomegranate extract
allantoin - anti-irritant
mentha piperita extract - peppermint extract, "counter-irritant"
acacia senegal - anti-imflammatory + thickening ingredient
Peppermint is an irritant to some people but I find it refreshing. Also, lactic acid may be too harsh for the most sensitive skin BTW. Overall, the gel's slightly medicinal but herbal/green scent and it's texture are really soothing on my skin. I notice an immediate decrease in the redness on my cheeks, chin and nose after cleansing with this. I've even noticed acne and older spots fading much more quickly and I believe this is due to the lactic acid.
I have young but dry, sensitive and acne-prone skin. I'm a PPP and redness has always been a problem for me though I wouldn't claim to suffer from Rosacea. I really recommend this to anyone with redness problems or just generally irritable skin (if the lactic acid and peppermint aren't a problem). I think this is very much worth it's price and I WILL be buying it again when I run out. Hooray for Murad and the product that actually lives up to it's large claims!
Loose Powders -T. LeClerc - T. LeClerc Loose Powder
breeps 8/15/2005 8:30:00 PM
I lourve this powder. It's my HG. Since investing in it, my MU has looked fresher and much more professional all day. I've used it over bare skin, concealer and a full face of foundation and never had a problem with it caking or looking powdery or overly-matte. I have dry skin so this is amazing .. period! Nacre is the perfect shade for my neutral PPP skin though the shades are sheer enough that most people could wear a few of them. I've used everything from Palladio to MAC to BE to Chanel and this is the best loose powder I've found. It's worth the price to me. To protect my investment I just transfer a small amount over to a clear jar for daily use .. do this over a sheet of wax paper and you'll never have any waste. Tap of the jar itself each time of open it to settle the powder.
I see in the reviews below that many people have had problems with this not being matte enough .. again, I'm dry skinned so I've had no problems with this. I've tried way too many powders that were drying for me.
IMO, this is one of the gems in the Cargo e/s line. It's a gorgeous gold/bronze with a red-orange tone to it. The reflective finish is very similar to MAC's Veluxe Pearl e/s. The closest shadow I have to this color is MAC Woodwinked but this is a much more true gold/bronze with orange tones instead of the pink-brown undertone of Woodwinked. It looks absolutely great with neutrals and brights alike. If you want to do a warm bronze smokey eye this would be perfect. Besides the color this shadow, it is very long lasting and Cargo e/s are huge so it will last forever! I've had no problems with the tin being flimsy and I like that there's not extra bulk tacked on by a large case or pot.
I bought this l/l based on reviews and I'm so glad I did! I've been considering l/l for a long long time but have never found the perfect "naked" shade. I'm a neutral-warm PPP and lipcolors do odd things on me. This is wonderful! It's like a barely pink nude in the perfect shade to go with everything. I can wear dark, light, warm and cool lipstick and gloss over it. It even looks great with just some balm over it (see my Vincent Longo lashes pic). It's a bit drier than the few other liners I've tried but I like that .. it moves less. It's $4, it's cute, it's easy to replace and it's exactly what everyone needs in their arsenal :)
HG lipbalm. I'm so happy to have finally found it. Burt's Bees, Blistex DCT, Kiss My Face, MAC and the Rosebud Salve .. pfft. Nothing healed my lips in the long term and was comfortable to wear. This soothed my lips immediately and after a few nights of wearing a thick layer, I didn't need to constantly apply balm during the day. I can finally wear all of my creme lipsticks again! It's glossy on the lips, lasts well and is more cost effective than most other mid to highend brands. And there's no "minty fresh tingle" which I hate :P You need very little .. I've barely made a dent in my one ounce jar.
Only possible improvment is a tapered end on the tube as in MAC's concealer. Thank you Kiehl's!
Fragrances -The Body Shop - Aztique Eau de Toilette
breeps 6/28/2005 4:31:00 AM
I also have Citrella (the yellow bottle) and I love to mix with this. One spray = three hours .. two sprays gives me at least six. This is a warm fruity scent. It may be too fruity for some, but I like light youthful scents on myself. It's lovely blended with Citrella and I liked it with Minteva too. Minteva will be my next purchase. I'm a fan of Demeter PMUs, and I think these are in the same vain. They're relatively cheap and I feel happy after I put them on :)
Fragrances -The Body Shop - Citrella Eau de Toilette
breeps 6/28/2005 4:27:00 AM
The scent gets a good discription below. The citrus note is very noticable, but it's slightly sweet and green too. I mix it with Aztique (the orange bottle :) to warm it up even more and add lasting powder. When using it alone I use two sprays to help make it last. It wears off faster than more expensive scents, but it still lasts six hours on me. I sometimes wear it with a Demeter PMU too. It makes me smell fresh and happy! I love it.
Liquid -Sue Devitt - 70% Triple Seaweed Gel Foundation
breeps 6/16/2005 5:37:00 AM
I'm a warm-toned PPP. Think Lumene DoubleStay in Vanilla Meringue, MAC NW5, Becca Biscuit/Malt. This is my foundation for those days when I don't want to look dolled-up .. I just want to look like me with better skin! I've been really disappointed with TMs but have been buying Tarte Smooth Operator for $35. I'm willing to pay $38 for a better match and a bit more coverage but I'm actually using less of this formula. I'm dry/normal until winter, so the finish is perfect for me. Moisturizing but not "dewy". It feels healthy and light on my face and blends well. I use a half-pump at a time and thinly layer instead of trying to pack it on all at once. With a bit of concealer and a dusting of loose powder, I'm set! Maybe not fashion-layout flawless, but my skin looks great without being overdone.
The main drawback is the lack of SPF, but I usually apply over Clarins UV Plus (SPF 40). Also the pump tends to collect a bit of foundation in the tip which comes out a bit dryer .. I just flick it away as I blend. I'm using Quiet and Still but it could be just a tad lighter :)
Blush -Sonia Kashuk - Cheek Sheer - Supersheer Summer Girl 03
breeps 6/14/2005 12:49:00 AM
I loved this (sadly I've misplaced it)! It looked frightening but blended into the perfect glow on my cheeks. It wasn't too drying but not oily either. The staying power isn't AMAZING but it's small enough to carry. I needed to touch up maybe .. twice in an eight hour period. Not a problem for me. I honestly liked this product better than all the NARS Multiples I've tried. Easier to use, more cost effective, and I like that it's not overloaded with shimmer. It was an especially great buy because I got it on sale! I really miss it, so if I see another in this shade at Target I'll snatch it up. Try it! You might be surprised :)
Eye Makeup Remover -Lumene - Express Touch Cleansing Wipes
breeps 6/14/2005 12:36:00 AM
These remove all the gunk from my face and my eye-makeup easily. There's an obvious fragrance but it isn't too terrible. These wipes would be lovely (especially since they come in small convenient packs) but sadly they make my skin burn like mad! Not even rinsing with water helps. I have to wash my face with my Murad cleanser immediately after using a wipe. This makes me especially mad because the package says "conditioning" and even directs you NOT to rinse after use. Maybe my skin is more sensitive than I thought, but I'd expect more from something "conditioning".
I've got to disagree with the review below on the quality of this duo! It's smooth, has just the right amount of shimmer and frost and blends perfectly. Maybe these colors won't work for everyone, but they'll be gorgeous on many with warm-toned skin. I've been looking for a warm yellow, and this duo has the perfect shade for me. The green is actually the less saturated shade in the duo, but it's a pretty pale moss. I have a pic of this duo on in my profile. I'm not happy about each e/s duo now costing 30USD, but the compact is gorgeous as always and I think these shades are wearable and great for summery looks or used with more dramatic shadows.
I was expecting to have to use a light hand with these colors only to find myself doing everything to pack them on! I've given up getting much color out of this duo and and retired Island Fever to "classy chic" mostly for work, unromantic fancy dinners, and days when I'm trying to look mature haha :) They are a bit chalky, though not as bad as Cleo, and the staying power is not great. For a school day (6 hours) I need to reapply. The upside is that the colors are quite flattering, but do not expect drama from this. ALSO USE A BASE! I like MAC Stillife Paint because of the slight shimmer it adds. I have an up close photo in my profile so you can see how washed out this duo an be. I think you could find similar colors and better performance in another line, but I still use this a lot.
My HG smokey eye look! I have a hard time with "smokey" but somehow this is a perfect alternative for drama. I love the lighter shade especially. It's called "taupe" in many of the reviews and also on the NARS site, but it comes out very purple-grey on my PPP skin. The forest green is very rich, and they blend well into a pretty neutral shade with a bit of shimmer. It brings out a lot of green in my eyes. I like this with a shimmery white or lilac highlighter to give more interest. I also like using these shades as liners themselves. The texture is beautiful .. on par with All About Eve! I'm always reaching for this.