I've been using this daily for a few weeks now and have examined it closely in various while wearing nothing else that could add any sparkle: It does have very fine glitter in it. In spite of the glitter, the effect on my face seems rather flat and dull, the main reason I will not repurchase and probably won't use the whole bottle. The coverage is poor unless one uses a heavy coat.
I went through a few bottles of this before I discovered that Visine LR (the LR stands for long-lasting redness relief) works just as well, and I think the effect lasts longer, 6 hours as Visine claims. The Visine product costs less, and you can buy it in any drugstore.
I used this for the first time about a week ago. (Purchased at Sally Beauty store.) It would be much better to have help using this product, but I used it alone and got very nice results. My lashes and brows are medium brown, and I dyed them black. I followed the instructions exactly, and left the dye on for just two minutes, as instructed. They came out very black and don't seem to have faded at all so far (will try to remember to update on how long it lasts). The dye even made my few light gray hairs brow hairs jet black -- it is very strong stuff! I got some of the product on my skin, both on a finger and around my eyes. Those spots were also stained pitch-black, as was some of the skin under my eye brows. Scrubbing gently with a Q-tip dipped in the remover didn't help much, but it also didn't burn as some have experienced. The unwanted skin stains faded over several days, though. Under my brow hairs, it just made my eyebrows look a bit too dark -- could probably be toned-down with a bit of concealer carefully wiped off the brow hair. And the staining on my eyelids looked like dark eyeliner and could have easily been disguised as eye make-up with a bit of eye pencil or dark shadow. I was careless about shielding skin, though -- I'm sure with care and practice unwanted staining could be eliminated. If you are using this product on yourself, as I did, you'll want to make sure that you have very good lighting, a magnifying mirror, and everything you need including the means to wash it off quickly -- all ready at hand before you start. And, because you do not want to risk getting this in your eyes, you'll need to heed the warning about not getting it near lash roots. You'll need to do one eye at a time and to resolve to keep that eye firmly shut the entire time. My eyes are sensitive, no I had no bad reaction at all. My lashes now look longer because the pale tips are now black. I've been curling them with a heated Ardell curler (which can make a really distinct and lasting curl), and although I don't usually like how eye make-up looks on my eyes, I like this look a lot (and plan to take it even further soon with some Careprost).
At $3.99, this was an excellent buy. The instructions say it is ready to curl when the silicone pad turns from pink to clear. However it is not very warm at that point, and you'll only get a lackluster curl. However because the ON mechanism has a spring so it has to be held on, I've been tricking it to stay in the ON position by sticking a small pencil in the opening created when it is pushed ON (it's obvious how to do this). That lets me easily heat it for a minute or more before curling without having to hold it ON all that time. After being allowed to heat for a minute or two instead of just the 30 or so seconds for the color-change, it has been comfortably giving my lashes a hard curl within 15 seconds. It's not a very natural curl, but within a couple of hours it wilts enough to be natural (and I wear glasses, so the odd angle probably isn't very noticeable). The Ardell isn't quite wide enough for my eyes, so I'm planning to get a Panasonic heated curler for the lashes that are left out.
Hair Color -John Frieda - luminous color glaze in brilliant brunette
gracie97 3/27/2010 11:21:00 PM
This is now one of my favorite hair products, and I use it almost every time I shampoo. It pretty much lives up to the claims on the label, giving hair a satiny feel and a lot more shine. With repeated use it even provides some gray coverage. I use a loving care type hair color that doesn't cover all my resistant gray very well (but looks natural and does no harm). This glaze boosts the coverage and extends the life of each touch up by a week or two -- so it is worth the bother for me. As the label indicates, the results improve with repeated use. I leave it on for 6-10 minutes, while I'm washing the rest of me, and that may be why my results are better than some others have had. My hair tends to be coarse and dull, and it is moderately damaged. No other product I've used has made my hair really shine. I've gotten compliments since starting to use this glaze.
Misc Beauty Tools -Unlisted Brand - SkinSational -- 3 Point Products
gracie97 3/11/2010 11:54:00 PM
The SkinSational is a small, manual exfoliator that is also recommended for massaging and mobilizing scars. It consists of a small plastic handle attached a highly texturized gum rubber exfoliating surface. I bought it on the web for about $12. I was looking for a very gentle exfoliation method that would remove persistent flakiness, get my skin cleaner, and that wouldn't irritate my prescription retinoid and BHA-treated skin. SkinSational doesn't irritate even when I use moderate pressure which provides a deep massaging sensation without pulling the skin. After three weeks of twice daily use, the flakiness is gone. My skin is softer, smoother, and has better tone. The SkinSational's main use may be on post-surgical scars. I haven't tried it for that, but noticed that it gets some rave reviews on-line for that use. I haven't used the Clarisonic Mia (which is very popular here), but I suspect from the descriptions of that product the SkinSational may be similarly effective despite being quite a bit less expensive. The instructions indicated that it would last 6-9 months.
These work for me, smoothing my frizzy hair into nice waves. However I'm concerned that the little teeth might damage my hair -- even if I try to unroll them very gently, they still cling to my hair and I wind up having to pick and pull to get them out. The larger sizes hold pretty well. But unless your hair is short, you may find that the smaller rollers don't grip more than a tiny amount of hair. So I'm looking for some other type of curler that's easy to use and in which hair will dry fairly rapidly. (Noticed a type of curlers at Sally Beauty today that are spiral tubes of a stiff nylon fabric -- one pulls hair through with something resembling a big crochet hook. Great concept. Tempted but afraid that I'd wind up with a Shirley Temple spiral do. Has anybody tried these?)
Conditioner -Citre Shine - Repair Activ Leave-In Conditioner
gracie97 8/9/2009 6:17:00 AM
Gives my dry and damaged hair a bit of extra softness. It is quite lightweight, a watery liquid that doesn't seem to add oil or weigh hair down at all. Am taking it on faith that this is protecting my hair and that it will be better off over the long run for using it. It doesn't cost much, is easy to use, and can be used with other conditioners, so it seems a reasonable bet. (Citre Shine Repair Activ shampoo is my HG -- see review -- so I know the line has at least one great, innovative product.) My hair is so damaged right now that I use a rinse out conditioner, then this, and on top of that VO5 sheer hairdressing (which adds shine and more softness). I put a squirt of purple toner from Sally Beauty in the bottle, so it does double-duty by quelling yellow/orange tones in my hair that I don't like.
Treatments -Paula's Choice - Super Antioxidant Concentrate
gracie97 8/8/2009 9:36:00 PM
I buy this again and again because Paula is constantly reviewing the antioxidant research and updates this product based on the results. The current formulation has stabilized vitamin C plus a slew of other antioxidants. Different antioxidants have different benefits, so it's good to have a variety, not just C. It's inexpensive compared to many other antiox formulas, and a tube lasts several months. The product is very concentrated so a few drops are enough. I'm puzzled, however, by the packaging because it seems that it could allow air in. Seems like a pump would be better. However I'm careful never to let the tube expand with air when the cap is off. How I apply: put drop on each fingertip of one hand, then press fingertips of other hand against them, then lightly and quickly run fingertips all over face and neck. I also put a few drops on the back of one hand, then press back of other hand against it, and then smooth all over hands and wrists.
Hair Color -Clairol - Loving Care ] [DISCONTINUED]
gracie97 8/8/2009 2:12:00 AM
I used this for several years after I first started getting a few gray hairs, then switched to stronger stuff. Just recently went back to Loving Care. My hair tends to be dry, dull, frizzy, and with yellowish undertones, and the stronger coloring products made all those problems worse. Using Loving Care seems to have improved all those problems. I don't mind that LC doesn't cover all my gray or cover it very well: It doesn't look realistic not to have some gray at my age, and the LC helps it blend in better, usually just looking like highlights for a couple weeks after coloring. Good-looking, healthy hair is more important to me than perfect gray coverage. LC never leaves me with the flat look of other, stronger products. It seems to actually improve the condition of my hair and give it shine. The little packet of conditioner was much improved while I was using other stuff! It makes my hair shiny and full and soft, and I wish they sold it separately so I could use it every time I color. I use the dark brown and even black shades on my roots every few weeks. The product stains hair with repeated use, so I don't color all my hair often, but when I do I use the light ash brown. (My natural color is medium brown with orange tones that have never looked good with my pale cool pink skin tone.)
EverPure is just SLS-free; it has other sulfate compounds in it. If you are looking for a truly sulfate-free shampoo, there is a reasonably-priced one in drugstores: Citre Shine Repair Activ. Repair Activ is inexpensive. I paid $1.99 for a big tube. And has a nice fragrance from the natural citrus oils. Unlike Everpure, Repair Activ shampoo does not lather at all, not even on a second application. It gets my hair reasonably clean and leaves it feeling soft and less frizzy. It's my new HG shampoo, and I'm puzzled that it hasn't attracted a string of raves yet.
It's my new HG shampoo! Repair Activ is really sulfate-free! And unlike the L'Oreal supposedly sulfate-free, it isn't just SLS-free but with other sulfate ingredients. Although the tube mentions lather, it is actually suds-free, even on a second application. I bought it because it was inexpensive ($1.99 for a good size tube) and smelled OK. Although it seems very mild, it does seem to get my hair clean, although I think I might need to use a stronger shampoo occasionally. After washing with this, my hair is softer and less frizzy.
I started using this as an antiperspirant/deodorant after reading in a People's Pharmacy column about concerns over the safety of aluminum that is in almost every other effective product for that purpose. The pharmacist wrote that some people had told him that milk of magnesia works quite well, and he felt it was a safer bet. I'm very impressed by how well it works for that purpose. It's is actually more effective than the Mitchums that I had been using. Keeps me dry and odor-free. Application has been a bit of a hassle. But this morning I poured some in a spray bottle and found that worked well, although I suspect it might eventually clog. (If the spray doesn't keep working, I'll buy a roller ball deodorant that can be pried opened -- Secret makes one -- just to get the applicator to put the MoM in.)
Lansinoh is amazingly effective as a lip balm! Before Lansinoh, my lips were perpetually dry and flaky, and most lip balms did little to relieve that. Lansinoh softened them completely. Within 24 hours it made chapped-from-birth lips utterly smooth, soft, plump and comfortable! It dries down to a very comfortable, slightly waxy texture and stays put for a long time, even through eating. It works significantly better than my previous favorite, Bobbi Brown lip balm. It also leaves Aquaphor, Burts Bees, Neutrogena, Sally Hanson, Paula, Clinique and the rest of the vast array of treatments for dry lips I've tried in the dust. I love that it is flavorless, odorless, hypoallergenic, and so non-toxic that it is safe for babies! Any sort of flavoring or scent in a balm seems to irritate and dry my lips even more. Am feeling inspired to try to mix up some tinted balm by melting a little chunk of highly pigmented lipstick and stirring it into some Lansinoh. The Lansinoh website has a list of many stores that carry the product. I found it in my usual supermarket -- Fred Meyer -- in the baby section by the baby bottles and nursing pads. Thanks Makeup Alley reviewers for writing reviews that brought great product to my attention!
I'm on my third box of the triangular Frownies which I'm using for vertical frown lines above my nose. Those lines are now significantly (about 50%) reduced. Although the company's info implies that maximum results can be obtained in about a month, my frown lines still seem to be gradually improving with nightly use. I wear three of them all night, every night. I use one directly over the frown lines with the rounded point pointing down towards my nose and two other overlapping that one with the rounded points pointing up towards my hairline. (I apply them in bed, without using a mirror or bothering to stretch the skin. They seem to stick better if I lick the non-glue side before licking the glued side: That softens the paper so it conforms to my skin better. Most nights them stay on very well despite being applied over my nighttime skin treatments.) My frown lines had been developing since I was in my 20's, so they were deep grooves which are now about half as deep and shorter than pre-Frownies. Also have horizontal wrinkles across my forehead that have improved significantly. Have also been using Retin-A every day for the last 6 months, and I think that has also contributed to the significant improvement in forehead lines, with the Frownies making the deeper lines shallower and the Retin-A reducing the fine lines. At this point, I'm considering getting rid of the bangs I grew about 20 years ago because my forehead looked older than the rest of my face. Since treatment with Frownies and Retin-A it is the youngest-looking part of my face. I plan to continue to use Frownies nightly indefinitely, although if the lines go away completely, I may switch to 3 times/week. Although it can take a long time to get results with this product, I rated it 5 stars because other than prescription retinoids such as Retin-A, it may be the only home-use product that actually gets rid of some wrinkles.