For years, I used Merle Norman Luxiva Lasting Foundation and it was my HG. I don't know what changed; whether it was the formula or just the effect of new packaging, but whatever it was, it didn't work anymore. I went to the MAC counter and found a great product with their Pro Longwear SPF 15, and while I love it and I would love to keep it as my HG, I just can't. Also, should MAC ever decide to discontinue their product, I wanted a drugstore product that I could use that gave me the same effect. I had read the reviews for Revlon's PhotoReady SPF 20 for Normal/Oily Skin and they were middle of the road. The ones who loved the product really loved and the ones who hated it really hated it. CVS was running a BOGO on their makeup and I decided to try it. I was leery about the fact that I couldn't color match in store, but CVS has a 100% satisfaction guarantee. I figured that Nude 004 was my color, so I snatched it up. I had to go out last night for a friend's birthday party and figured why not give it a go. I prepped and primed like normal, put my concealer on like normal, contoured like normal, then finally came to the foundation portion of it. I put the foundation on with my normal applicators and blended it out. It matched my skin tone perfectly, it had fantastic coverage, it felt light on my skin, and it dried fairly quickly. I finished my makeup, put on a smidge of HD powder, and walked out the door at 2000 (8:00 pm). Dinner, drinks, girls night, and 5 hours later, my makeup still looked as good as when I put it on. I had to blot one time and re-powder once, but I attribute that to sweating and dancing. When I got home, the hubs even commented on how fresh my makeup looked ("Wow, you don't look all oily and crap." - thanks Hubs...). I was able to get a majority of the foundation off with the first baby wipe. The second baby wipe got the rest of the foundation and the eye makeup off (I use my foundation in addition to my primer on my lids). I washed my face, moisturized, and went to bed. I woke up this morning, fully expecting my face to have some nice little bumps and pimples, but there was nothing. I still have to spend some more time wearing it, but so far, I'm impressed. Ease of application: Very, it blended well. Color Selection: Pretty good, the only thing is you can't color match in store like you can at the makeup counters. Packaging: I love the pump that comes with it, but I'm not fond of glass bottles, they break too easily in my clumsy hands. Longwear: pretty much lives up to the name. It wears a while and creates a nice pretty canvas. Coverage: great coverage! It hid scars and minimized the look of the pores. Removal: It was pretty easy to remove with standard baby wipes.
I have not ever been able to buy a matte lip color and it 1. not dry my lips out to the point that I have chapping and flakes, and 2. not look completely ridiculous on me. I wish I could be the kind of person that can wear all kinds of matte lipstick, but I'm not. I like this because it didn't do either of the above mentioned things. This didn't chap my lips and it didn't look bad on me, of course, I didn't slick it on like lip gloss either. All I did was take the applicator and dab it on my lower lip, then made a few small dots on my upper lip. While it was still damp, I smoothed it out with my lipstick brush. The color (Milan) looked good on me, and because I primed my lips before, they didn't get chapped and the lipstick stayed damp longer, giving me the chance to smooth it. I didn't like the fact that it did kind of wear off about 3 hours later (I didn't eat or drink and I didn't do much talking). Like a few of the reviewers, It didn't wear off evenly. It wore off in the middle of my lip while the outer edges still looked good. After it wore off, I used some MAC Lipglass in Lychee Luxe just on the center of my lower lip and my Cupid's bow, then blended it out. The color was just perfect and it wound up being pretty. I like this product and I do give it 4 stars. If it were to stay on longer and not fade so unevenly, then I would be hard pressed not to give it 5.
I absolutely love this eyeshadow. Plumage is described as a dusky peacock color and while it isn't as bright as I would imagine it to be, just judging by the description, it is still very pigmented and pretty. I normally use mine to cut my crease and in the outer v. It works wonderfully and I have used it with a brighter purple, a brighter blue, and a brighter green (although not at the same time, because that would just be kind of bad) and all those colors have looked really good with it. It is very pigmented, so it is somewhat unforgiving, but if you build the color instead of just smearing it on, it seems to work better. I do wish it had a little bit more brightness to it, but I can always add a little bit of Knight by Spectrum Cosmetics. I have worn this color with every color outfit I own and somehow it seems to match, no matter what. With orange, it looks more muted brown. With brown, it looks more muted green. With blue, it looks more teal...so on and so forth. I have read where some people have found this to be chalky but I can't say that's the case for me. I use two primers, though. The first primer is my normal makeup primer (Monistat Gel) and the second primer I use is either my UD or Spectrum. I love this color and I find that it has become one of my go-to shadows.
I got this product for free in a gift bag and after using it, I'm glad that I didn't have to pay for it, no matter how cheap it is. I put this on in my bathroom, under my normal light, with all my normal brushes and equipment. Nothing was out of the ordinary as far as my application. I used a farily light hand just because I didn't know how it would go on. When I first put it on, it looked good and I was hopeful. After I finished my makeup, I went to look at it in the hallway mirror. It looked like had slapped neon pink paint on my face....neon paint with sparkles, at that. I went back to the bathroom and tried to wipe it off. I couldn't get this stuff off. I had to wash my makeup off and start over again with my regular blush. I gave the blush to a friend of mine who has a wonderful chocolate complexion and can pull off these colors. She put it on and said it was a fantastic color for her. 3 hours later, I get a text from her saying that all she had left of the blush was sparkles. She didn't have any color left at all. When I asked her if she would ever buy it again, her response was a swift "Um, not even." Two out of two agree, we don't like this blush and we definitely would not buy it.
I do not like these cloths. I think they are overpriced and they don't get all the makeup off. I was going to use these to help take my makeup off, but it didn't really work. I scrubbed, scrubbed, and scrubbed at my face to get my makeup off (which normally, I have no problem doing that and my Olay cloths do a fabulous job), only to wash my face with my normal facewash afterwards and find that the cloths took of almost NO makeup. It looked like no makeup had been taken off. They made my face oilier and more prone to breakouts than ever before. Would I buy them again? Absolutely not - even if they worked - they are still overpriced.
Normally, I don't wear lip gloss simply because it settles into my lips, feathers, and leaves my lips feeling sticky and tacky. I love the way it looks, but I can get that look with eyeshadow and some simple, colorless balm. I saw the Smacks on the Coastal Scents website and I decided to take a chance. Many times, I have clients that want to use a lip gloss and ask for suggestions. I like being able to give them an opinion and honestly, there are times I wish I could just touch up my lips with gloss instead of having to take the eyeshadow and balm with me everywhere. I can honestly say that I was presenty surprised at how good ths gloss was. The more I wore it, the happier I was with it. I have the Love Kitten color and I must say that it is a great color. It does have a shimmery bronze color like the website says, but there is a also a little bit of a pink with it. It looks great over a normal nude, rose, burgundy, or even pink lip. A little goes a long way. It doesn't feel gloopy, tacky, or drying. I must say that this will be in my bag for a long time.
Generally, I love MAC products. They work really well and they have a great color selection, but when they get it wrong, boy do they get it wrong. I have Bombshell, Hot Gossip, and Brave and I love them! They are the perfect color and consistency for me. They go on smooth with no tugging and they always seem to last. They don't dry my lips out and they go good with a ton of my glosses. I can't say that about Creme d'Nude. The color does not flatter me, the lipstick dries my lips out, it doesn't go on evenly, and it tugs my lips when I put it on. Whether I apply it out of the tube or with a brush, the formula seems to be very dry and unforgiving. I think this color would be great on someone that is a little darker than myself, but all in all, I think this is one of the few crappy products MAC makes. Save yourself the time and money and buy either Revlon's Soft Nude or Circe by NYX. Both are almost identical to MAC's Creme d'Nude but Revlon's is a little bit pinker and NYX's is a little more moisturizing.
I'm not going to rave and rave about this product, but I can say that this is the best lipliner for the money. I have it in nude, pink, burgundy, and rose (forgive me for not knowing the exact names) and I find that all the colors are well pigmented, they stay put (when I prep and prime my lips), and they don't dry my lips out. I can do everything from blend them inward and fill in with lipstick, put colored gloss on top of them, or even put clear gloss on. They really do work. Are the the super best out there? No, but they are the good ol' go to. Kind of like the Little Engine that Could.
I love this fixing spray. I find that it does give me the dewey look that I want. Normally, I mix a little bit of this with my foundation and after powdering, I can go all day without my makeup looking cakey or without my makeup falling off my skin. Granted, I prime like mad, I make sure I give my makeup time to "cook," and I set my makeup with powder. I love this, my clients love this, and I find that it does what it is supposed to. This is a definite HG and a repurchase.
I'm very middle of the road about this product. I find that it works good for me on the upper apple portion of my cheek, but if I use it on the whole apple, I can take on a very weird look; not a super shiny but not exactly a subtle look either. As far as the lasting power, it will last me all day if I prime and build like normal, so it is great in that regards. I do like the pink, but I always have to add a little bit more mauve to mine. I haven't found anything that can compare to it, so that's why I would buy another one. If I found something that worked as good but looked better, I would be hard pressed not to buy it and forget about the HC blush.
Blush -Merle Norman - Luxiva Lasting Cheekcolor - Real Rose
lepoe 11/18/2012 8:32:00 PM
I love this blush! It is a beautiful rosey pink color with just the right amount of mauve. Normally, I use this as part of my highlighting and contouring step. It goes on the lower portion of the apple of my cheek, while I put a more shimmery blush on the upper portion of the apple. I like the way it looks and the color it gives. I know that for me, a little bit goes a long way. I have seen people that say it isn't pigmented enough for them or that they have a problem with streaking. I had that problem in the beginning, but I started using a bigger brush and dabbing the color on my cheeks, then blending out. I don't know if that will help, but I found that works for me.
I wanted to like this product so very bad. I can't say that I do, though. The pink side picks up enough mascara to do a sufficient job, but the wand is way too long and it is too hard to control. The purple side picks up way, way, WAY too much product and it winds up being a clumpy mess. I can't recommend this product and honestly, my pink and green tube works much better. I think I will stick with that. EDIT 11/27/12 @ 2341: Big, big thanks to kaelamck for the mini-tutorial on how to use this. I was not instructed at the MAC counter how to apply this mascara. I used the purple brush first, then the pink brush and I took my time with this product. That seemed to be the magic touch, because my eyelashes looked fabulous. I didn't put on my falsies and it still looked like I had them on. While the pink and green tube is my HG, this will definitely become my night out on the town/drama mascara. Because of this new development, I am raising my rating to a 4.
Eyeliner -Wet 'n' Wild - Mega Eyes Creme Eyeliner - Black
lepoe 11/18/2012 5:31:00 AM
Can I get a Halleloo for this product! I love this and it is my HG of creme eyeliners. It goes on smooth, is easy to blend, does not smudge once it is set, and it doesn't dry out easily. I put it on top of my false lash band and it make the band virtually impossible to see. In my opinion, it works just as good as the expensive brands and is much easier on the wallet.
These are the most fantasticaly wonderful lashes. I can't begin to tell you how much I love them! They are very natural looking and they aren't heavy at all. I do have to cut a little off the inner portion, but that is simply because I don't like to have a uniform look all the way across. I like having a tapered look in the inner corner. I also apply a gel/creme/kohl eyeliner over the band (once it is on my eye) and finish with 1 swipe of mascara. My eyelashes look fantastic and I get so many compliments on how pretty they are. People, literally, can not tell them apart from my natural lashes. If I can offer one other piece of advice, it would be to curl them before putting on the mascara and to use a lash comb to separate them.
I really like this product and I love the colors that come with it. Some of them are a little bit chalky and they tend to be harder to blend, but overall, they are great colors. This is a fantastic neutral palette and as long as I use my eyeshadow primer and I take my time, the colors come out pretty true. You have to start the colors off and make sure that little bit of surface covering is off the first time you use it (you know what I'm talking about...it's that little powdery coating that covers the eyeshadow when it first comes out of the package. I guess it's to protect the color) and after that, it seems to work good. I have also found that if I have a damp (not wet) brush, the color seems to work better. Also, don't swipe it on, just dab it on and it deposits more color and is easier to blend.