Tinted Moisturizer -Laura Mercier - Tinted Moisturizer SPF 20 - Oil Free
josie24 8/28/2011 12:34:00 PM
I have been wearing this on and off for years, and keep coming back to it. I like a natural look but need a little coverage to blend some hyperpigmentation and camouflage large pores. This has more pigment than most tinted moisturizers, but less than most foundations -- I would call it light to medium coverage, depending on how much you use. The coverage is somewhat buildable but keep in mind that it is a moisturizer so layering will also add some extra "dewiness." The reason I have strayed and tried other products is that my skin is quite oily and this really is NOT the best product to minimize shine. As mentioned above, even though it is oil-free it does have moisturizing properties and has a more dewy finish (but not "glowy," thank goodness, like a lot of products that have shimmery micro-particles in them). I think this aspect would be emphasized in a humid climate. However, while I have found more matte products and ones that did a better job of covering pores, they often looked cakey, or "separated" on my oily skin, or emphasized flakiness. This LM product is the most forgiving product I have ever found when it comes to those little flaky patches that can crop up due to use of retinoids or cold winter weather. I live in an arid climate and am, ahem, getting more mature, so my skin can be dry at the same time it's oily. This actually feels cooling and soothing going on irritated skin. Bottom line, I have never found a product that has looked as completely natural as LM Oil-free Tinted Moisturizer -- like I am not wearing foundation. I just use blotting papers a couple times throughout the day to keep the shine at bay and stay looking fresh. If looking natural is a priority for you, check out this product!
I have been looking for a great fragrance for fall, when I tend to crave sweet, spicy, and earthy scents. Previously I had found a few that I like but don't love... Chanel Allure Sensuelle almost fit the bill but has an incongruous melon/aquatic note. Euphoria is nice, but is a bit "too much" and never settles down on my skin. Prada EDP was too much patchouli for me. Sensuous Noir shares many characteristics with these other scents but somehow seems just right. Sensuous Noir goes on with a blast of patchouli, but as it settles down, amber takes over as the strongest base note. Then as it continues to dry down, more vanilla comes out. It can also go somewhat powdery later on, as ambers are apt to do. This is not only less linear than the original Sensuous (which I also happen to love), but it is much stronger and longer lasting. One spritz is plenty and I can still smell it 12+ hours later! Personally, I will wear this scent mainly at night time and during the cooler months. To me, this smells like autumn in a bottle!
This is the new Moonlight Path flanker that bears almost no resemblance to the original. Whereas Moonlight Path smells to me like a soft floral featuring lavender, Moonlight Magic is an amber-based, soft oriental. The listed notes of Moonlight Magic made me expect a sweet and very fruity gourmand. According to the BBW website, top notes are Luscious Strawberry, Wild Goji Berries, Ripe Raspberry; middle notes are Gardenia Petals, Jasmine, Peach Nectar; and basenotes are Coconut Musk Captive, Creamy Vanilla, Sandalwood, White Amber. I guess, to some people, this *will* smell like a very sweet and fruity gourmand, but it isn't overly fruity relative to many BBW fragrances. The most prominent top note is indeed a red berry but more jammy than juicy. Middle note is very vaguely white floral -- nothing I can really pinpoint. Drydown is mostly amber, and I think I detect patchouli even though it's not a listed note. The whole effect is softened slightly by vanilla but probably not enough to satisfy true vanilla lovers. For the record, I couldn't detect any coconut. All in all, I like the scent. I expected something more springy with all the fruit notes but it really feels like more of a cozy fall fragrance -- sort of a softer version of Twilight Woods. Most of all, what keeps coming to my mind as I smell it is that it's very -- VERY -- similar to Lulu Guinness Cast a Spell.
Fragrances -Yves Saint Laurent - Opium Fleur de Shanghai
josie24 11/14/2009 9:05:00 PM
This limited-edition version stays pretty true to the original, more so than the other LE summer editions I have tried. For those who love the incense note in the original Opium, this manages to retain it, while still being lighter. I think it might be because the heavier, animalic basenotes are stripped away. This probably won't win over new fans among those who dislike Opium, but for those who like Opium and want a lighter alternative, this is a winner.
Fragrances -Yves Saint Laurent - Opium Poesie de Chine EDT LE
josie24 11/14/2009 9:01:00 PM
Of all the limited-edition Opiums I've tried so far, I find this one the most "summery." It is a more sheer, transparent take on Opium, with the powdery notes largely washed away. While the carnation still adds a fresh, spicy kick, I think the jasmine note comes to the forefront here, giving it a lovely sweetness. Enchanting.
Fragrances -Yves Saint Laurent - Opium Fleur Imperiale
josie24 11/14/2009 8:58:00 PM
Of all the summer limited-edition Opiums, I find this the most "classic" in character. It opens with shimmering topnotes -- perhaps a touch of aldehydes? -- and dries down to be a more gentle and powdery form of Opium. Some people find powdery scents to be clean and summery, and other people find them to be more suited to colder weather. Personally, I love them year-round for evening, especially bedtime. This just has a soft, cozy quality to it. Fans of both Opium and Chanel No.5 Sensuel Elixir should check this out.
I just had to add my own 5 lippies for this one. I am glad to reduce the number of layers I am putting on my face during the summer months, so I use this as a sunscreen+light moisturizer+primer. I sometimes use an additional pore-filling primer on my t-zone but if your pores are small I think this product would be a fine primer all by itself. It does a great job of both controlling oil and helping my makeup stay put on my face. This product would be true perfection if it was SPF30 but since it is only 15, I only use it for office days and use something stronger if I am going to be outdoors for a while. Perhaps if it sells well they will make a version with higher SPF. I predict this will become a cult favorite among oily skinned gals!
I like citrusy, refreshing fragrances in the summertime and was curious to try this. On first spritz it was light, fresh, and green smelling -- very promising. Once it settled down it started being a bit too sharp and too floral for my taste. It reminded me of Chanel "Chance Eau Fraiche," but with more musk. After a while, it started getting more and more musky, to the point where I needed to wash it off. Musk just doesn't work for me, especially in a light summer scent. No sale. (By the way, for a refreshing green citrus scent without the musk, I would recommend Guerlain Aqua Allegoria Mandarine-Basilic.)
I had heard this described as a "summer" or "beachy" scent, yet the notes didn't seem to fit my idea of beachy -- not fruity, aquatic, or coconutty. Not a light, tropical floral. But I am a big Guerlain fan and was curious to try it. Aha! It does smell completely like summer to me because it reminds me of the old Ban de Soleil suntan gel (do they still make that?). When I was a young girl in the 1970s, it seemed like the height of sophistication to use this product. The ads always featured a very glamorous woman, tanned to a deep brown, in a classy white swimsuit. Anyway, I don't know if Terracotta *actually* smells like it or it just matches my memory of it. Either way, this is a fragrance that conjures up good memories, and is a soft, easy-to-wear skin scent with a warm vanilla base. A great "summer vanilla."
Fragrances -Unlisted Brand - Lucy B. Pink Frangipani Eau de Parfum
josie24 7/12/2009 9:31:00 AM
I have always loved the smell of fresh tropical flowers, but when I have tried to wear them in perfume form, they tend to scream -- loudly -- on my skin and never quite settle down into something comfortable to wear. Pink Frangipani, is warmer an softer and, in my opinion, smells like fresh plumeria -- not the plasticky air freshener version, but a beautiful lei of flowers around my neck. I love the coconut note, which is also more natural-smelling than most, and subtle so you don't smell like you just put on suntan oil. If you have tried Kai or Child and they have been too overpowering for you, I would suggest this. I just have a small decant, but if I were going on a tropical vacation I would definitely purchase a bottle or larger decant. Alas, I am not, so... I probably won't.
I absolutely agree with the previous reviewer, in that the combination of topnotes (bergamot, cassis, cocoa) does smell much like classic Coca-Cola, fizz and all! I, however, happen to like it -- maybe out of some sort of nostalgia. Like a comfort food, this is a comfort scent. On my skin, it then goes through a rather musky stage as it dries down, which I am not crazy about. Then it settles into a sweet, somewhat gourmand but somewhat earthy scent. Unlike the "femme fatale" image RL appears to be going for, this fragrance seems to me more like a casual, cozy scent perfect for fall days. Will I repurchase? Not sure, because Notorious has very poor staying power. After an hour or two I can barely smell it. So, I will just re-spritz every couple hours, enjoy the fizzy topnotes, and appreciate my small bottle while it lasts. EDIT: This ended up being too musky in the drydown for my personal taste. Those who like musk should try this, though.
I was looking for a fresh, clean, citrusy scent for summer, but this was just too masculine smelling on my skin -- sort of like vetiver but veering toward aftershave. It didn't smell bad, and I would like this in a candle or home fragrance, but it is just not my thing. I would recommend the Citrus Verbena fragrance by L'Occitane if you are looking for more of a straight-up citrus scent that is lighter and sweeter.
Fragrances -La Maison de la Vanille - Madagascar EDT
josie24 11/10/2007 2:38:00 PM
This is a very woody, spicy, herbaceous vanilla. I appreciate vanilla fragrances that are more complex than a single cookie note (though I do like those, too), but this one was WAY too masculine-smelling on my skin. I wouldn't mind smelling this on someone else, but it's just not for me -- I needed to wash it off after a couple hours. I gave it an extra lippie for its staying power, though, which is quite respectable. I am so tired of those meek, fleeting vanillas...
Fragrances -Unlisted Brand - Bourbon French Parfums → VANILLE JARDIN
josie24 11/2/2007 9:52:00 PM
(My first review!) Since I normally steer away from florals, I would not usually try a fragrance with "Jardin" in its name, but the kind folks at Bourbon French sent me a sample and it is positively addictive. If you like your florals clean and fresh, this is not for you. This is a rich, almost buttery, vanilla-floral fragrance, with gardenia playing a starring role. Lily of the valley and narcisse play supporting roles, and a soft musk becomes increasingly more apparent during the drydown. I should mention that the sample I tried is the parfum, so I cannot say whether the EDT or cologne have the same richness. I would recommend this for those who like vanilla scents and who also like the smell of gardenia and/or tuberose but usually find these flowers too sharp when in a perfume. UPDATE: I just found this too dramatic to be wearable on a regular basis. For the vanilla + white flower theme, I now prefer Monyette Paris, which feels softer and more wearable.