I purchased this topcoat because I generally like their regular nail polishes. The good: this gives a nice, high-shine finish and it is the fastest drying topcoat I have ever used. The bad: it doesn't really help polishes stay on. I've tried it with Essie, OPI and many other brands. Within a day, I have noticeable tip-wear and then it begins to chip. I don't think I will even finish the bottle. =(
Moisturizers -Clean & Clear - advantage oil-free Acne Moisturizer
imnotshelley 2/27/2008 4:54:00 PM
This was my HG moisturizer for over 2 years. It contains 0.5% salicylic acid and is very gentle & absorbs quickly into my combination (slightly oily), breakout-prone skin. I also really like that it doesn't contain any parabens, which is usually a difficult quality to find in a drugstore product. Anyways, I was on Yasmin when I was using this product, and now that I am currently off it, it has been terrible! Now when I apply this to my skin, it feels...chalky...it's slightly dry, but it feels like I have some kind of talc or paste on my skin. Yuck! Even though my acne is usually only mild, I am now realizing that the Yasmin probably had more to do with my good skin than this moisturizer. I am now in search of a new moisturizer and hopefully this time I can find one with SPF as well.
This shadow is a subtle, light yellow with pink iridescence. In the pan it reminds me of Easter...hehe...what "Easter" yellow SHOULD look like, so pretty. This color is one of my staple highlighters for the inner corners of my eye and brow bone. It is second only to my Vanilla pigment. I find it pairs well with almost all the shadows I wear and it looks great with greens, pinks and purples because of the gold and pink tones. For reference, I'm NW20 with dark golden brown eyes and hair. I took one lippie off for the slightly strange texture. After a while it seems to "cake" on itself...it gets little clumps and I can't seem to pick up much on my brush...but I just and smooth it out again. I will always be purchasing for my palette!
I wish I could give an "official" 3.5 lippies. Well, I usually wear the highly-touted Dior DiorShow Waterproof mascara in black but when I ran out a few months back, I decided to try something new. This VL Volume Riche had higher ratings then as opposed to now, so that's why I took it into consideration. Just for clarity, to me, any "volumizing" mascara simply means it is a thickening formulation because it coats to increase the width of your lashes. I don't believe they are separate catagories, haha. Anyways, I think the best word to sum up my experience with this mascara is FICKLE. Sometimes this goes on extremely smoothly and instantly thickens & darkens my lashes in one only coat, better than my DiorShow can. I do, however, ALWAYS have to use the Sonia Kashuk metal lash comb in tandem with this. Despite going on smoothly, it doesn't really separate my lashes well and a few tend to stick together. Other times I use this mascara, and no matter how I control the wand or how many coats I apply or whether or not I use the lash comb, it just doesn't look very good. It makes the tips of my lashes look very thin and brittle, although the base always appears thick and dark. It also smudges on me by the end of the day, though I don't use any type of primer before or fixative after. I just recently re-purchased my DiorShow and compared the two "eye-by-eye" and I prefer the Dior. It really defines my individual lashes better consistently and with two coats gives the same illusion as this Volume Riche without the hassle. In terms of packaging, this tube has never broken after falling off the counter (unlike my DiorShow, see my other review) however it only contains .22oz of product versus .38oz in DiorShow for about the same price. I think I will stick to my waterproof DiorShow and good old pink & green Maybelline (the cult favorite).
Moisturizers -Boots - No 7 Time Resisting Day Cream
imnotshelley 7/6/2007 3:47:00 PM
I live in the U.S. and wanted to try out something from the Boots line now that it's sold at Target. I wanted to try the Time Delay Day Moisturizer w/ SPF 8, but I couldn't find that specific product/line at the store. Does anyone know if this item was renamed or discontinued? There was only the No.7 Lifting and Firming Day Cream and the No.7 Time-Resisting Day Cream w/ SPF 12. I chose the No.7 Time-Resisting instead at $19.99US. I am always very weary of moisturizers with SPF, no matter the formulation they always just feel super greasy and never sink in on my skin....but this product did! It absorbed very quickly for a cream and left my skin feeling very soft throughout the day. I couldn't believe it! I was also willing to overlook the slightly strong scent for its effects. Unfortunately, after using this for two days, I developed tiny white bumps all over my lower cheeks and jawline. I discontinued use and the reaction seems to be calming down. Not sure if the reaction stemmed from the strong fragrance or SPF or what. For now, I will not repurchase. I will investigate whether the reaction was from this product or another staple I use often (Murad's Essential-C Enviromental Shield Moisturizer) and just repurchased that might not have been as fresh as it should be. Will hopefully update with a conclusion in a few weeks. For reference, I have sensitive, combination, acne-prone skin. EDIT 7/12/07: The reaction was definitely from this moisturizer. The really strong fragrance must not agree with my sensitive skin. I really wanted to love this product. Also, I did some research and found out that the Time-Delay line is only sold outside of the U.S.
My mom had this at home and I tried it in my quest for the best face cleanser. I have sensitive, combination skin that is acne-prone in the t-zone. Most gentle products do not help my acne and ones for oily or problem skin are way too harsh and dry me out. I was hoping this cleanser would fall somewhere between the two, but it didn't work out for me. After washing, there was no tightness but it seemed to leave a greasy film on my face that was just icky feeling and looking. My mom said she had the same result and we have two different skin types in texture, age, etc. If I'm going to pay $32 for 2oz. of a product, it better be damn good and this was terrible. Time to continue hunting for the perfect product...
Conditioner -Paul Mitchell - Super Skinny Daily Treatment Conditioner
imnotshelley 6/20/2007 5:35:00 PM
I have straight, normal-to-fine hair in very good condition (usually silky and fairly shiny) that I dye on a semi-regular basis, i.e. every other month or so. I got this in a full-size set with the Super Skinny Daily Shampoo. This does not smell nearly as wonderful as its counterpart, and really didn't do anything for my hair. It didn't make my hair silky at all and my hair didn't seems to dry any faster. I think a good quality blow-dryer is more important for that anyways. Drugstore brands have worked better. The only thumbs-up is for the sleek, space-saving packaging (tall, thin cylinders) that both items share. Would not repurchase or recommend.
Shampoo -Paul Mitchell - Super Skinny Daily Shampoo
imnotshelley 6/20/2007 5:30:00 PM
I have straight, normal-to-fine hair in very good condition (usually silky and fairly shiny) that I dye on a semi-regular basis, i.e. every other month or so. I got this in a full-size set with the Super Skinny Daily Treatment conditioner. All the details of the product were great - a fresh apple-y scent and nice slim sleek packaging that doesn't take up all the space in my shower and features a one-push flip top. That however, is where the good things end. In terms of performance, this shampoo does not work very well. It did not make my hair any straighter than other shampoos and did not lather well. Since my hair is in good condition, most shampoos (even drugstore brands) work pretty well but this one was one of the worst I've tried and it's a salon line! My hair was flat and limp after using which I attribute to it leaving residue on my hair. Will not repurchase or ever recommend.
My skin tans fairly easily, but I'm 22 and as I get older, I've been trying to spend less time outside in the sun just "tanning" unless I really am enjoying a day at the beach. I refuse to pay so much money for a spray tan, and I feared that I would have to go tanless if I don't want any more sun damage. My previous experiences with self-tanners were pretty unconvincing (too orange, too streaky, etc) even while following all directions and exfoliating and shaving first. So I came here to MUA first and purchased this self-tanner after reading all the rave reviews. And guess what? It is absolutely FABULOUS!! It imparted a visible, bronze glow to my fair to medium skin without any streaks in just one application! I ended application a few inches up from my neck and at the wrists and there are no obvious lines of demarcation whatsoever! Only two little things bug me: 1) the shimmer, though subtle, gets on everything and so I cover whatever I'm sitting or laying on with an old sheet so that it doesn't get sparkly and 2) Product gets on the outside of the package and onto my hands again from having to squeeze the tube multiple times during application. A pump dispenser would make this perfect. The scent is more medicinal coconut than beachy coconut, but for such fantastic performance I just deal with it! Definitely my HG self-tanner. I have a feeling I will be fighting girls for these when they go on sale eventually at B&BW!!
Misc Beauty Tools -Shu Uemura - New Improved Eyelash Curler
imnotshelley 6/20/2007 4:55:00 PM
I used the original Shu Uemura curler and got this one about a month ago when I replaced my old one. The new, improved version features a "mushroom shaped" curling pad and supposedly more ergonomic handles and a better hinge so that too much pressure isn't applied. I don't notice a difference with the way it feels in my hand but I do think that the new pad might actually be better. I know that these curlers are meant to last only for a year, but the last one I had, I kept for too long because replacing it was too inconvient at the time. The hinge ultimately became lax and when I tossed it out, I discovered that the pad had actually torn down the middle from the pressure and inside were what looked like tons of tiny little crimped black lashes! Uh oh! That said, I think the new pad will help to better counteract that type of deteroriation. Also, the directions still say to replace after one year so I doubt the new hinge really has much value. Next time I'm going to go for the Shiseido with replacement pads if I can find it in a store because I really don't like having to replace the whole thing each year. It does fit my eye very well though, and curls my lashes wonderfully. HG for now!
Mascara -Christian Dior - DiorShow Mascara Waterproof
imnotshelley 6/20/2007 4:39:00 PM
This is currently my favorite mascara. I have typical lashes, not really thick and not super-sparse or completely straight. I curl my lashes with the Shu Uemura eyelash curler (because it seems to fit the shape of my eye best) and then apply Diorshow in Black. I use the wiggle technique on both my top and bottom lashes and get great results. It definitely lengthens and separates my lashes, though I don't really get too much volumizing action but I'm ok with that as I wear more eye makeup anyways. It is also a little difficult to get to my inner upper lashes without getting mascara on my nose because the brush is so large. It is, however, the most smooth and silky mascara I've ever used and have repurchased about three times. My only other gripe is that the packaging is way too delicate. This rolled off my bathroom counter (about 3 feet from the floor) and the threaded part of the tube where you screw on the top cracked off at the bottom!! I have never had this happen with a mascara before. Consequently, the product dried out within a day or two. For such an expensive product that has to be frequently replaced anyways, I expect it to last the full 3-4 months. Dior should invest a little more money into a durable package instead of wasting it by printing their name over and over in silver on the tube! That said, this is still my current HG but always stays at home and doesn't travel with me.
I tried this cleanser after reading the great reviews here on MUA. I typically have difficulty finding skin care products because my skin is sensitive, combination and acne-prone in the t-zone. Cleansers for sensitive or normal skin aren't strong enough to combat my acne, and products made for oily or problem skin tend to be too strong and dry me out. This cleanser left my skin completely dried out and tight, just as DDF's Non-Drying Gentle Cleanser did. Maybe there is an ingredient I cannot tolerate in their formulations. Thankfully I tried this as a sample from Bath and Body Works first.
I have difficulty finding skin care products because my skin is sensitive, combination and acne-prone in the t-zone. Cleansers for sensitive or normal skin aren't strong enough to combat my acne, and products made for oily or problem skin tend to be too strong and dry me out.
Despite being billed as a gentle cleanser for sensitive skin, one use of this left my skin completely dried out and tight! I was really disappointed and expected a much better result for a $30 cleanser, especially one specifically labeled as "non-drying"! I also had the same result with DDF's Sensitive Skin Cleansing Gel so maybe there is a particular ingredient they use that my skin cannot tolerate. Thankfully I tried this as a sample from Bath and Body Works first.
I tried this in my search for my HG summer cleanser. I have difficulty finding skin care products because my skin is sensitive, combination and acne-prone in the t-zone. Cleansers for sensitive or normal skin aren't strong enough to combat my acne, and products made for oily or problem skin tend to be too strong and dry me out. This was recommended to me by the staff at Sephora. Korres' skincare line is, like their other products, primarily based on natural ingredients, so I thought try something different although I am aware that "natural" doesn't necessarily mean "no reaction". Unfortuantly, I think there were just one too many natural extracts in this product because it broke me out all over my forehead, chin and cheeks with little bumps. Also, the cleanser is billed as a "fluid gel" but I personally found this thin, runny consistency too annoying, especially since the packaging does not have a pump to dispense it into your hand. I am glad that it was only a sample from Sephora. I had to throw this one away and I am still searching. This might work better for someone with less sensitive skin.
This is one of my absolute favorite colors. It's a beautiful, warm orange-coral color that spreads more easily than usual for a Lipglass. I can put it on very sheerly or build it up for a more obvious look. This is one of the only coral lip colors I have found that looks good with my skintone. I think it's because it's not full of shimmer and glitter like other Lipglasses and is a more opaque hue. I have brown hair and eyes and my skin is in between fair and medium with yellow undertones(NW200). Like all Lipglasses, the wand makes the gloss easy to apply without getting your fingers in the gloss and the tube sure can take a beating! I shop for this Lipglass pretty regularly and was extremely disappointed to find out that it has been discontinuted!! It was never a Limited Edition product and unfortuantly not a single MA ever mentioned that I might want to stock up. =( So far I haven't found a replacement color from MAC that looks as good.