Cleansers -Boscia - MakeUp-BreakUp Cool Cleansing Oil
justagirl 8/7/2010 6:37:00 PM
I love this stuff. This is a product I would have never heard of or even tried if not for MUA and I am SO glad I did. I have oily skin and some acne scarring so I tend to be heavy-handed with the foundation and concealer. I've always felt that no matter the cleanser, I just wasn't getting all of my makeup off. Enter cleansing oils. I did some research after the Oil Cleansing Method failed me (I was using generic oils) and was THISCLOSE to buying MAC's cleansing oil when I stumbled upon a review for this stuff. Sephora was having a 20% sale for Beauty Insiders and I knew if it didn't work out, I could just return it so I thought, "Why not?" Which brings me back to how much I love this stuff. Upon first use, it was super obvious how it just cut through my makeup when I massaged it on my face and then when I rinsed, it was a Hallelujah moment. I could SEE the makeup coming off. Now I don't use this for my eye makeup so I can't be helpful there but it definitely removes any other trace of makeup from your face. Most people probably wouldn't need to wash their faces afterward but I have problematic skin so to treat and prepare it for other products, I follow up with a mild cleanser and my Clarisonic. I'm happy to say that I've never seen a trace of makeup on the Clarisonic brush. Also, I've never experienced dryness that others have mentioned but I do have oily skin and always use a moisturizer as it is. At $26, it seems a bit pricey but all that's need is 1 pump (sometimes less) to cleanse your entire face. I've had this stuff since April, I use it almost every night (I don't use it on the days I dare to go makeup free) and I still have half a bottle left so it's well worth the investment for clean, makeup-free skin.
Okay. I'll say this: It's not the best mascara ever but it is the best MAC mascara I've ever used. Since MAC isn't really known for having great mascaras, maybe that's not saying a lot but I do like it. I personally think it's a pretty good volumizing mascara which is what I wanted it for but I think I've bought ones for cheaper that are comparable at the drug store. That being said, Il use it until it runs out or goes bad but I doubt I'll buy it again.
My favorite MAC lipstick. I admit I bought it for the name alone (at a CCO) but buying, it has pretty much become a staple. I'm an NC 20-25 and it's pigmented enough to show up on me but almost light enough to give a nude effect. I usually pair it with a pretty pink gloss and am all set. Love it.
The most amazing purple shadow ever. I'm a sucker for purple to begin with and unfortunately, I was in a makeup slump and didn't see this product until the Style It Black line was pretty much sold out. I FINALLY was able to buy it online through a sale (& probably paid double for it) but it's as amazing in person as it is in pictures. As others have said, definitely used a dark base for this. The MA recommended a black greasestick when I picked up Blue Flame in person so that's what I've been using. Then, again as others have said, apply it wet. The payoff is about 75% better when you apply it wet (as would probably be the case with most mineralized eyeshadows). Absolutely beautiful color. If I ever run out, I wouldn't hesitate to buy it for double again!
This is absolutely my favorite new polish. As mentioned by others, it's a combination of multiple glitter colors but honestly, pictures do not do it justice. It's so sparkly and pretty and just stands out. I had a compliment on it the very first day I wore it and then another the next day. I mean, how often do you normally get nail polish compliments -- especially two days in a row! As others have said, it looks like it going to go on pretty sheer until you layer a few coats. I'm sure you could wear it over another color and get lots of different looks from it but I really love it by itself. If you like unique and fun polishes, you won't be disappointed with this one. I wish I had 4 or 5 bottles of it!
Hair Styling Tools -Sedu - Ionic Ceramic Professional Flat Iron (Original)
justagirl 2/11/2010 8:58:00 PM
I've had this flat iron for four years now and it is STILL holding strong. I had read all the reviews and asked for this as my only Christmas present all those years back and it has well surpassed the money spent on it (Thanks, Mom!). I have very thick, medium curls that go to my shoulders and I can straighten my hair in under 20 minutes with this iron. That in itself is impressive. Not only that, my hair stays straight for DAYS, unless it gets wet or I wash it. T he plates are wider than most flat irons which is really helpful when you have a lot of hair. Plus, the fact that you can adjust the heat is really important and not something I would go without now that I have seen what a great feature that is. My Sedu heats up super fast to boot. I've used CHIs and I've used other high end straighteners but this is the one you want. If anything ever happened to mine, I would cry, And then I would replace it immediately! On a side note, my roommate was so impressed with my Sedu that she bought one for herself. The thing is, she ought the newer model, a Revolution. It's simply not as good and she even said that. The plates are thinner and it doesn't seem to get as hot despite saying that is. As it normally goes, the original is always better.
It's not great but it's not the worst. The only word that really comes to mind is "eh." I'll use it in the future is I have absolutely nothing else around but I definitely won't buy again. I normally have oily skin but have begun getting dry patches around my nose and mouth. I use a daytime moisturizer with SPF and needed something different for night. I figured since I'm normally oily a "light night cream" would be exactly what I needed. Wrong. It doesn't really feel creamy. It doesn't have any kind of thick consistency so it sort of just sits on top of your skin and slides around. I didn't research before buying, I just saw it int he store for cheap and grabbed it. Next time I'll do my research. Save your money, folks!
One of my favorite polishes ever. It's a gorgeous, deep, glittery purple without being cheap looking. And you know what I mean by that. Sometimes glitter nailpolish looks cheap no matter how expensive it is or what brand it is. I saw this polish on a few blog sites and knew I had to have it and was so glad when I tracked it down. I was even more impressed by it in person. It applies smoothly and doesn't get chunky and think like some glitter polishes do. I think the best part is that it stays on for days and DAYS. I have never gone so long without a nail polish chipping. Continually impressed. A must-have shade -- holiday or not!
Moisturizers -Christian Dior - HydrAction Visible Defense SPF 20
justagirl 2/10/2010 10:02:00 PM
I got this as a deluxe sample at Sephora. Normally my skin is very oily and I don't need a a lot of moisture but being that I moved to the North and it's winter, I decided to give this a shot. Although it has an SPF in it, I use it at night because while the consistency is thick, it is moisturizing without being heavy. The great thing is that it absorbs into the skin really well so I would definitely use it during the day, when my skin is feeling particularly dry. The downfall is, it's Dior so it's expensive. I have seen the full-size jar and it's pretty large but I'm sure I can find a comparable cream for less once my sample runs out.
This reminds me a lot of Tarte's Smooth Operator foundation. I agree with others that this is a bit of sparkle but it's very fine. It has good coverage (believe me, I have to have decent coverage because I have acne scarring) and a good consistency. It doesn't go on splotchy at all. It has nice, even coverage. I'm a NC 20-25 and I got this in 004 Shell and the color match was perfect which is usually hard for me to come by. For a drugstore foundation, it's fantastic and I think until I find something better -- I am always on the hunt for a HG foundation -- I'll continue using it. EDIT: My skin got really dry/flaky from the winter weather and this foundation did nothing but highlight that. Beware if you have very dry skin. I'm putting this on hold until my skin goes back to normal.
Masks -DDF - Sulfur Therapeutic Mask [DISCONTINUED]
justagirl 11/8/2009 2:20:00 PM
This product definitely sops up oil and makes my skin feel softer the next day. I think the trick is to make sure it doesn't dry so completely that your face hurts when you take it off. I've experimented with it a little and I find that taking it off when it's almost dry with a warm, damp washcloth gives me the best results. That being said, it is expensive and I'm not convinced that I can't find another mask that will give me similar results for less. I have yet to use it as a spot treatment but after reading other reviews here, that will be next on my list. Maybe I'll change my mind after doing that.
I read about this product on Good Housekeeping's website. Their lab had tested it with pretty great results so I went out and bought it. I still can't figure out how I feel about this product. I used it without fail for weeks and weeks and I just don't think it did what it promises. My pores tend to be more congested on my cheeks, nose, and chin and while I do think it helped somewhat, it wasn't noticeable enough for me to want to keep using it and buy it again. Especially when I read in other reviews that when you stop using it, your skin goes right back to the way it was. My skin didn't look good enough to pay $40+ for it every few months.
Cleansers -Bliss Labs - Steep Clean Deep Pore Cleanser
justagirl 11/8/2009 2:11:00 PM
I honestly used this every day for over a month and while I think it did help loosen up the gunk in my pores, I don't think I can justify the price. Took the advice of another reviewer who said she left it on a bit, washed off, and was able to do extractions. It DEFINITELY helped me do that but I feel like I continued to use it and expected the results to keep getting better and they didn't. I'd recommend testing this first or getting a sample if you can before shelling out the cash.
Things I love? That it's a duo of two of the most sought after NARS products. Things I don't? That these colors just don't seem to work on me. I've read many places that Orgasm is a universal color that looks good on just about anyone and have been told by MAs that I need to use peachy colors. Now that I've tried it, I just don't agree. Don't get me wrong — it's a beautiful peachy-gold color but I have a light, olive skin tone (usually NC 25) and I think I need something more pink or reddish to look natural as a blush on my skin. I'm not a fan of how sparkly it is either. As for the Laguna shade, again a great color but it doesn't seem dark enough for me. I wanted to use it for contouring and it doesn't work for that on my skin. I'm sure it would be fine just as a normal bronzer but keep in mind, both of these products have a gold shimmer so you want to be careful on the amount you use. So overall, they are pretty colors. Just not for me. Definitely try them out before you jump in believing they can be used on almost anyone.
This would be SO easy to love... if only it didn't smudge and make you look like a raccoon within an hour of application. The brush is innovative and certainly works. The formula however, does not. I was psyched the first time I tried this to see how well defined and amazing my lashes looked. I was not so excited when I looked in the mirror a few hours later and it had all smudged under my eyes and I looked like a complete amateur to makeup application. If they improved the formula, I might give it another try but unless you want mascara under your eyes as opposed to on your eyelashes, don't go there.