I have THE worst luck with Clinique products HOWEVER, I simply LOVE their city block sunscreen. I can't stand to put regular body sunscreens on my face which is already super-oily and acne-prone all on its own, and in my search for a good face sunscreen I discovered this one. It has a weird chunky texture coming out of the tube but it's consistency is very light and watery so you can apply many thin layers instead of one gross thick layer. I took this stuff with me on various vacations to hot and humid destinations and upon my return, people said my face didn't tan. And I tan very easily. This means one very important thing: the sunscreen was able to withstand my oily, sweaty skin. My skin also didn't break out from all the layers of sunscreen. Here's what I do: apply a thin layer. Allow to dry. Repeat twice. No thick layers, or it will pill. And apply with a very light touch or it will pill. It has a very slight tint. I like this tint because it is a yellow tint that tones down the perpetual redness of my face. I don't use this everyday, just when I'm going to be outside for more than a half-hour.
Treatments -Clinique - Even Better Clinical Dark Spot Corrector
dmchee 5/21/2013 3:57:00 AM
I don't feel this was worth the money -mainly because it didn't do a thing to lighten any of my acne scars. I went through a whole bottle because I liked the smooth, silky texture and how it filled in my pores like a primer. It actually kind of reminded me of the hourglass veil mineral primer. Anyway, I used a whole bottle, and then I got another bottle from my mom (she was using it with no results and gave up) and noticed that the two bottles actually differed in texture -the one I received from my mom was really gritty, and when you applied it, it formed white pills everywhere -gross! I definitely do not recommend this.
This BB cream is "okay". I'm not overall impressed or blown away by it, but I don't really regret buying it either. I guess I've just had better. I'm using it everyday (not really by choice, mind you, I'm just on a strict low-buy) but I wish I had something better, LOL. The consistency is a little too thick for my liking -I like to apply with my fingers and the thicker consistency requires more blending, which in turn aggravates the dry patches of skin. For this reason, I like Laura Mercier's tinted moisterizer way better -it's thinner consistency makes for super-easy application for low- maintenance, everyday wear. I'm an NC30-NC35 and I use shade No. 23 which is a pretty good match for a light-medium skintone (I'm a slightly deeper toned Asian). The coverage is somewhat buildable and is decent for toning down redness and covering small pimples but appears cakey if applied too thick. The finish is matte. My skin is dry in the morning and turns quite oily as the day progresses, and this product doesn't do too much to prevent it, but at least it doesn't feel heavy or changes colour. I haven't noticed a correlation between acne flare ups and the use of this BB cream, but i'm not convinced that this BB cream is helping my skin, either. Overall, I will finish this bottle, but I won't repurchase. Definitely going back to my LM TM.
I have finally cured myself of acne. I've had horrible acne since college, mostly due to hormone imbalance and stress. At first I tried all sorts of topical solutions and of course they didn't work. Then tried modifying my diet to include healthier choices, more water, green tea, less sugar, more raw foods etc -none of that worked. Birth control (Yasmin) was really the only thing that worked. But after seeing reports on how some girls died from taking Yasmin, I tried to make several attempts to stop taking Yasmin but always gave up and went crawling back for more Yasmin because my breakups would be worse than ever before. Last month, I did extensive research on what acne-sufferers are deficient in, and put myself on a new, strict, daily regiment: (1) 25mg elemental zinc (gluconate) ($5 for 3 months supply) (2) 3 table spoons of Brewer's yeast (in warm water) ($14 for 1 month supply) (3) 2 tablets of spirulina ($7 for 3 month supply) (4) 1 multi-vitamin containing copper ($11 for 3 month supply) I overlapped my last packet of Yasmin with the above. It's been 1 month since I've stopped taking Yasmin and 2 months of taking my new regiment (1 month of taking it without Yasmin) and Ive only had 3 pimples, and they were very small and lasted 2 days tops -definitely not the large, deep, scarring. cystic pimples that lasted 2 weeks like I usually got before. Only problem with zinc is that, although the tablet is tasteless, somehow just putting it on my tongue makes me gag. Also must be taken with a meal or else it feels "heavy" in the stomach and kinda nauseous. Finally, I really can't comment on how effective zinc is by itself, since I've only tried it in combination with Brewer's yeast, spirulina, and a daily multi-vitamin. Do a quick Google search on these ingredients and like me, you;ll find they have a lot of benefits to acne sufferers. Good luck. [Update] I've been doing this for 3-4 months now and my skin is doing very well. I've noticed a few patches of dry skin which makes sense considering zinc is supposed to decrease oil production. Skin still breaks out with the occasional small pimple but they are manageable and I'm still very happy with my results/progress. [Update 07-May-2013] People keep messaging me for an update so here's another. I'm starting to lose track of when I started my regiment -I think it's been 5 months now. Due to budget restraints, I've stopped taking the multi-vitamin and the spirulina. But I'm still taking the Brewer's yeast and zinc in same amounts. If my skin flares up, I'll bite the cost and buy more multi-vitamins and spirulina, but so far, I haven't seen any negative effect from this change. My skin is still pretty clear. I've had 1-2 small pimples the past month but they healed on their own within a few days and were small enough that just a little tinted moisterizer was enough to cover them up. Those pimples were on my chin which I know means its hormonal -and they occurred right before my period. BTW, I dont, nor have I recently ever, used any topical acne treatment. More updates later.
I bought this palette because I love the versatility of neutrals and because of the cost value of eyeshadow palettes versus single pots. I'm not disappointed by this palette but to be honest, I don't reach for this one as much as the Naked 1 palette. I find a lot of the Naked 2 eyeshadows don't show up on my NC35 skin tone. Mine came with a mini lipgloss that I haven't touched. If there's ever a "Naked 3", I'd probably buy it, but for now, Naked 2 is "meh".
Eyeliner -Stila - Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner
dmchee 1/27/2013 1:22:00 AM
This is a very good liquid eyeliner; I am very impressed with it! I wear it on top of UDPP and it doesn't smudge or flake. I wore it to a party that went late, and went to sleep in it (just that one time, I swear!), and when I woke up the next afternoon, it was still where I put it - it cracked a bit at the wing, but it didn't flake off or smudge at all! Very impressive coming from someone with SUPER notoriously oily skin/eyelids. Application is super easy with the stiff, sharp tip and OH, it dries SUPER fast, which is an important feature for me who has hooded lids and is always on a rush. I gave it a 4 instead of 5 because of the price ($30 from Sephora) and I think Revlon or L'oreal has (or had) a comparable liquid eyeliner, I just can't remember which one.
Gels/Soaps -Philosophy - Vanilla Birthday Cake 3-in-1
dmchee 12/3/2011 12:40:00 AM
I got this from Sephora as a birthday gift. It's a generous size and I like the smell, but the pearlescent color suggests a very chemically based product. I don't have a puff to use but it still lathers pretty well. I'm on a strict budget so I can definitely appreciate this free treat and since I haven't had any skin reaction to it, I will finish the bottle. The only reason why I wont repurchase is because I don't normally use body wash anyways (nor will I use it as a shampoo because I've heard it's drying and I rarely have the leisure time to take bubble baths).
Primer/ Corrector -Urban Decay - All Nighter Makeup Setting Spray
dmchee 12/1/2011 10:57:00 PM
I bought the travel size bottle (15mL for $11 -which I know is a rip off compared to the normal size but it was a spontaneous purchase -picked it up while lining up at the check-out) because I've always been curious about this product but didn't really want to commit to the full-size one. I have super-oily skin that I control with coastal scents silica spheres underneath my LM TM or silk creme, but even with the silica spheres, I still get beads of oil on my T-zone after a couple hours. I had read in many reviews that this setting spray was good at controlling oil -even better than the de-slick version -and I thought maybe, just maybe, this product would keep the fresh, matte look of freshly applied makeup. Well? Did this work? Um. Not really. Actually, I don't think it did anything at all to my face. I liked the fresh scent and the cooling mist but that's all it really did for me. I'll continue to use this because I like how it removes that overly-powdery look for a more natural finish, but once I finish the bottle, I likely won't replace it.
I have both KVD's Saint palette and UD Naked palette -in fact, I tend to use them both at the same time. One thing I love about the Saint palette is the palette itself -it's a heavy, solid-feeling metal case with a snapping clasp and I feel confident that if I throw it in my purse, it's not going to pop open versus the Naked palette which I always wrap a hair-tie around in case the magnetic clasp fails. One thing I hate about the Saint palette is that it doesn't come with an eyeshadow brush nor is it long enough to add one yourself. Instead it comes with an eyeliner which I don't really use. As for the eyeshadows themselves: they're very soft and apply smoothly with rich, long-lasting (when applied over UDPP) pigmentation that's easy to blend. The only one I don't really use is the pink one (3rd from left) because of the glitter and the tone. Which one do I like better: Saint or Naked? Hmm...I pick Saint, but not by a landslide. My perfect palette would be the Saint palette with Naked's eyeshadow brush, "Virgin", "Naked" and "Buck" (i.e. some matte shadows). oh and I definitely agree with what a previous reviewer said "Caravaggio is an awesome liner".
Loose Powders -Coastal Scents - Silica Spheres Powder
dmchee 11/30/2011 11:29:00 PM
I bought a 1oz jar from coastal scents and woa, this is more than I expected! It's probably about..oh..50mL of powder in a 100mL container (roughly). I put some into a sifter container and the powder, being so finely milled, went everywhere. I dusted some onto my freshly washed, moisturized face using my Ecotools blush brush and the powder flew everywhere. When I applied LM tinted moisturizer on top, the finish was matte and not as dewey as usual, indicating that even though I couldn't see the powder, it is there doing it's thing. Unfortunately the mattifying effect did not last as long as I'd hoped -by the time I reached work 1 hr later, I could see tiny beads of oil on my nose, and yes, I had to blot again mid-day and late afternoon. I think it's okay -not a miracle product but it does mop up oil to some degree: without silica, I'm a greasy mess but with silica, I get just tiny beads of oil which is as good as it gets, from what I've tried so far. Maybe if I can develop a technique to brush this onto my skin without so much of it flying off, I can get more oil-absorbing power from these spheres.
Treatments -Unlisted Brand - Witchcraft Nail Hardener
dmchee 11/22/2011 9:38:00 PM
I bought this at Wal-mart for $9CAD (10mL) and wow, no regrets! It glides on and levels out like a pro. Even when I get lazy and start applying super-thick layers, it doesn't bubble or pool. It applies clear, unlike it's worthy competitor "Seche Rebuild" which has a "milky" appearance. It has a strong smell but it dries fast so the odor doesn't linger. Instructions say to reapply twice a week so I don't bother applying polish on top (although I don't see why you couldn't because it forms such a smooth base). My nails are rough and dry from months of filing off gel nails but my nails definitely feel more rigid and stronger and will soon make a full recovery thanks to Witchcraft! [EDIT] Oh. My. God. I have to say it again: "this stuff is amazing". My second week of using this product and my nails seem...back to normal!! I no longer see signs of filing and scraping! My nails are starting to grow past my fingertips but they seem solid enough to withstand bending!
Top/Base Coats -Unlisted Brand - All Season Professional Prep N'Clean Dehydrant
dmchee 10/15/2011 3:58:00 PM
This stuff is amazing -I bought a 1oz/30mL bottle (twice the size of a nail polish bottle) for about $10 at Sally's which is a good investment for your nail polish collection if you consider how it makes each manicure last longer and therefore each bottle of nail polish lasts longer. A thin watery layer of application makes your nails instantly and very visibly dull and dry looking which I guess makes your nail polish grab hold. My nail polishes last about a week which is a notable improvement from the 1-3 days without. The ingredients are simple so I would assume any brand would do the same -this brand had the best value.
Treatments -Unlisted Brand - California Mango - Mango Miracle Cuticle Remover
dmchee 8/25/2011 11:27:00 PM
Not going to lie: I chose this one because it was the cheapest at Sally's. But fortunately, it does the job. The directions say to let stand for 1 minute but I start pushing back my cuticles right away and it works fine. No nasty odor. And one 1 fl oz bottle will last a long time. The squeeze bottle is very convenient. I haven't tried any other cuticle remover so I can't say it's better/worse than any other, but this one is effective (and cheap) so I would repurchase.
I found this product to be "okay". I wish my results were as successful as the previous reviews; maybe they are using this product in conjunction with some other stuff -I don't know. I use Rebuild by itself, two layers, and my nails do feel a little bit stronger (thicker and less flexible) but they're still prone to snags, tears and breakages as they grow longer. Also, the layers seem to peel off at the edges, especially near my cuticles and sides of my nail bed, within 2 days. By the 3rd day, I can peel off the layers with my thumb nail, like telltale onion skins. FYI, my nails are not damaged from working with my hands or acrylics/gels or anything, they're simply weak all on their own. SIGH. Some things I do like about Rebuild: it dries fairly quickly and it's virtually colourless, but does it actually "rebuild" my nails? No. [EDIT] check out "witchcraft nail hardener" -it's my definite HG nail repairer.
It's okay. I didn't buy this sooner because I was happy with my Coastal Scents 88 warm palette. But when I hit pan on my CS palette, I decided to try the Naked palette. I couldn't find it in any Sephora stores, so I ordered it online ($58CAD+tax+shipping = ~$78. eep!). Mine came with an eyeshadow brush and a travel sized primer potion. I am NC30 and some of the lighter shades did not show up well on my skin. The stay, colour selection, blendability and pigmentation etc are good but not anything to get all excited about. In fact, I am a little disappointed -not because this is a bad product but because I set the bar up so high based on all the rave reviews and hype. If you already have the CS warm palette, don't bother, the Naked palette will just duplicate some of it. My #1 remains the Chanel "spices" palette, which in my opinion, far surpasses this, even though its only 4 shades.