I stopped into Aveda the other day to pick up a fresh bottle of Night Nutrients and was disappointed to learn that the product has been discontinued*. Fortunately, I was able to order a few bottles through the aveda.com website. Night Nutrients is a silky serum that glides onto skin; according to the packaging, it "nourishes and restores skin overnight." I use this product under my moisturizer and find that it helps my moisturizer work much, much better than alone. I've noticed that if I skip using this product, my skin looks very dull and tight the next day, even with use of moisturizer; in fact, I ran out and had not yet purchased a replacement bottle -- my supervisor asked if I was okay because my skin looked "stressed" -- not a pimple or whitehead in sight, just some dullness from a few missed nights of Night Nutrients. This is an absolute, can't do without, HG for me. Packaging is pretty -- 1 oz. glass bottle with plastic pump dispenser. There's no cap, but the pump can be twisted to lock for travel. I always put first aid tape on the pump and toss it in a Ziploc bag when traveling because I'm paranoid about spills/leaks. A bottle tends to last me about 6 months using 3 pumps/day for face/neck/décolletage. *I can't figure out why Aveda would discontinue this product! It has a 52 reviews with a 5 star rating on the Aveda site.
Blush -Bobbi Brown - Sheer Color Cheek Tint in Sheer Raspberry
nisey_nyc 4/20/2009 12:08:00 PM
Sheer Color Cheek Tint is a new product from Bobbi Brown. Similar to Tarte cheek stains, this product is a translucent creamy gel stick housed in a swivel-up container. Unlike Tarte's product, the package is much smaller, which means it is way more portable (my main gripe with Tarte's cheek stains, which I otherwise love). I recently got my makeup done at the Bobbi Brown counter during a promotion with Bobbi's national makeup artists; the MA used this product on my pale, freckled skin, along with a daytime eye look (cement/navy) and sheer gloss. Honestly, I never would have reached for this color, as I tend to stay far, far away from any product with the name "raspberry" in it. However, this looks fantastic! The color is rosy but ultra-sheer, just giving a flushed glow; I think it would suit all skin tones. This product is also available in Sheer Blackberry, Sheer Lilac, Sheer Pink, Sheer Coral, and Sheer Mauve. Sheer Coral is next on my try list! Note: I gave this a 5 for price -- for $22, you get just .13 oz.; Tarte is priced at $28 for 1 oz.
I like this product very much--it gives my skimpy, blonde lashes nice volume, length, and color (I wear black) and doesn't irritate my contacts. It's easy to apply, lasts the whole day, and doesn't flake on me. To boot, the packaging is really pretty--black on black (like fishnet stockings) with metallic powder pink writing and a crown. Even the lash brush is pink (until you cover it up with mascara). The brush is plastic like Lash Blast's, but not nearly as large. I just have two small problems with this product--firstly, it dries out really quickly. I had to replace it quicker than other mascaras, which is surprising because mascara usually lasts a long time for me--I'm always on the elusive quest for the holy grail, so I've always got 5 or 6 different formulas in my makeup bag. However, it's super cheap (about $8 where I live), so I didn't care. My second problem is that the brush is pretty flimsy and can get bent easily and won't snap back into shape. When rushing to apply my mascara, I accidentally hit the brush off the rim of the bottle when reinserting it; this caused the a wobbly bend in the wand that won't go back to being straight. I tried to straighten it out with my fingers, but it didn't work. Ingredients (from Rimmel UK website, not listed on US website): Aqua/Water/Eau, Paraffin, Cera Alba/Beeswax/Cire D'abeille, Stearic Acid, PVP, Cera Carnauba/Copernicia Cerifera (Carnauba) Wax/Cire De Carnauba, C18-36 Acid Triglyceride, Triethanolamine, Lecithin, Acrylates Copolymer, Panthenol, Propylene Glycol, Polyvinyl Alcohol, Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben, Tocopheryl Acetate, Talc, Propylparaben, Benzyl Alcohol, Simethicone. [May Contain/Peut Contenir/+/-: Iron Oxides (Ci 77491, Ci 77492, Ci 77499), Carmine (Ci 75470), Chromium Hydroxide Green (Ci 77289), Chromium Oxide Greens (Ci 77288), Ferric Ferrocyanide (Ci 77510), Mica (Ci 77019), Titanium Dioxide (Ci 77891), Ultramarines (Ci 77007)].
I agree with the review below--this is a great product. I also prefer wooden pencils (rather than the click or retractable type) and have had a hard time finding the type with smudgers attached. I have small, light blue eyes and fair skin, so black can look harsh on me. This is a perfect charcoal color without shimmer, and it's just light black/dark grey, not bluish or brownish or any other color. It smudges nicely with the attached sponge smudger or a smudge brush.
I really like this gel blush. I've used other brands of gel blush (Clinique, I hate you for discontinuing Black Honey) and am pretty comfortable with the application technique. Applying this takes a little practice (compared to regular gel blush) because the color doesn't show up until it's been on your cheeks for a few seconds, so you have to use the right amount from the start, or slowly build the color; if you use too much, you have to wash it off. This gives my fair, freckled skin a nice pink glow. If you don't wash it off your fingers immediately, it will stain, so it isn't great for on-the-go unless you have access to a sink. Despite the price, I will buy this again -- a little goes a long way.
Eye Shadow -Sonia Kashuk - Shimmering Long Wear Creme Eyeshadow
nisey_nyc 4/4/2009 2:05:00 PM
I have this in Gold and Amethyst (Target was out of Pewter when I bought these). It's a creamy pencil in a retractable silver tube with a pull-off cap. It's really simple to use and fingertip blendable, so great for a purse or on-the-go (no brushes required). I really like the Gold--it gives a nice golden champagne color to the eye and is buildable, plus it doesn't wear off easily. The Amethyst doesn't work so well for me--it just makes my blue eyes look tired. I can't wait to try Pewter.
This is a makeup bag staple for me. Tawny is a pinkish-brown blush that doesn't turn up muddy on my freckled, fair skin. It works really well with most lip shades and is just perfect for the workday, when I tend to do a strong but neutral/nude eye. Just one caveat--it doesn't do anything for my complexion when I'm feeling tired or under the weather; on those days, I tend to reach for my HG, BB's Pale Pink blush, to perk me up.
I have fair skin and light eyes--I love the idea of a simple champagne lid paired with dark gray or charcoal liner and black mascara. Previously, Stila's Kitten was my go-to shadow for this purpose, but then I discovered Urban Decay's Sin. This isn't as glittery-shimmery as Kitten, but is much more satiny-shimmery and slightly less pink. It blends with other colors like a dream, and lasts several hours without creasing. It's very flexible--apply with a damp brush to wear alone, or dry with a light hand as a base. As a New Yorker, I love that the packaging looks like an old NYC subway token! My only gripe about the packaging--the edges where the snap lid closes (on the bottom) are pretty sharp.
The Tarte Cosmetics website describes this color as "sheer peach-red". I bought this color after having good results with Tipsy (shimmery peach) and Blushing Bride (plummy rose). This color matches my skin's natural blush and is way less red/intense than Flush or Natural Beauty (other colors that I considered). It's a nice color for day (I have fair skin) and can be built up for night. The texture (somewhat waxy, but comfortable) is particularly good for humidity. It also works well paired with a strong red lip. Please see my reviews of Tipsy and Blushing Bride for additional details on Tarte cheek stains in general.
I'm not a big Clinique user. I got mini versions of this a few times as GWP a long time ago but ignored it. However, I recently bought a Clinique Moisture Surge set at duty free that included 2 glosses and a deluxe size of this mascara. I love it! Makes my skimpy blonde lashes long, dark, and full, and doesn't irritate my sensitive contact lens wearing eyes. Also doesn't flake during the day or give me raccoon eyes. Removes easily with soap and water. I bought a full size upon my return home and have had the same great results. I don't like the packaging in terms of its aesthetics--dark green sparkly plastic cylinder, nothing special--but it'll do. The formula and the brush more than make up for the the boring packaging!
Despite some flaws in the packaging, I really love this product. I first tried Tarte cheek stains a few years ago, when my co-worker included a set of 3 mini stains (Blushing Bride, Tipsy, and a clear sparkly LE color) in her Christmas gift to me. At the time, I found the products somewhat messy and didn't use them much because I was more into powder blush. However, as I'm getting closer to 30, I've noticed that my skin is considerably drier and cream or gel blushes work better and don't settle into the few fine lines that have started to develop. Additionally, this type of product (wet versus dry) delivers a "glow from within" finish that powders can't match. Blushing Bride is a shimmer-free plummy-red color with a subtle plum scent. It comes in a plastic cylinder that reminds me of a Push Pop and has a somewhat waxy consistency similar to Body Glide (anti-chafing product used by athletes and for breaking in new shoes that rub). The container is really big (too big in my opinion, I wish it was skinnier & taller), so I just swirl a little bit on my cheeks after applying tinted moisturizer or liquid foundation, then blend, blend, blend with my fingertips before it dries (you get a good 25 seconds of blending time before it dries). It looks really scary in the tube, but goes on pretty sheer--you only need a tiny bit! I don't like using a brush with it because it can make the brush hair pretty gummy (even Taklon). I'm fair with freckles and a tone that makeup artists always describe as neutral--neither warm nor cool. Some blushes can look really muddy/dirty on my cheeks due to my freckles. This product just looks great and gives a natural glow for everyday or coverage can be built up for nighttime. I just wish the container was smaller (takes up too much room in my makeup bag, so it stays home). For lovers of Clinique's discontinued Black Honey gel blush, this is a great substitute, although the consistency is much different. It gives the exact same look! *Note that parts of this review are taken from my review of "Tipsy".
Despite some flaws in the packaging, I really love this product. I first tried Tarte cheek stains a few years ago, when my co-worker included a set of 3 mini stains (Blushing Bride, Tipsy, and a clear sparkly LE color) in her Christmas gift to me. At the time, I found the products somewhat messy and didn't use them much because I was more into powder blush. However, as I'm getting closer to 30, I've noticed that my skin is considerably drier and cream or gel blushes work better and don't settle into the few fine lines that have started to develop. Additionally, this type of product (wet versus dry) delivers a "glow from within" finish that powders can't match. Tipsy is a pinky-peachy-apricot color with a very, very slight hint of shimmer and a subtle apricot scent. It comes in a plastic cylinder that reminds me of a Push Pop and has a somewhat waxy consistency similar to Body Glide (anti-chafing product used by athletes and for breaking in new shoes that rub). The container is really big (too big in my opinion, I wish it was skinnier & taller), so I just swirl a little bit on my cheeks after applying tinted moisturizer or liquid foundation, then blend, blend, blend with my fingertips before it dries (you get a good 25 seconds of blending time before it dries). I don't like using a brush with it because it can make the brush hair pretty gummy (even Taklon). I'm fair with freckles and a tone that makeup artists always describe as neutral--neither warm nor cool. Some blushes can look really muddy/dirty on my cheeks due to my freckles. This product just looks great and gives a natural glow for everyday, or works well with a strong coral lip (due to the peachyness of the stain) without competing. I just wish the container was smaller (takes up too much room in my makeup bag, so it stays home).
This is my standby gloss--it goes with almost everything, so it lives in my handbag. Nude is probably Bobbi's most popular gloss; it works well alone with her muted eye and cheek color palette and you can layer it over lipstick for a glossier, more colorful look. As other reviewers have noted, the package is very small for the price, the scent is weird (very artificial), it's really sticky, and the brush is a piece of junk. The brush bristles feel like a slightly softer version of a cheap eyebrow brush--I wish she'd improve this! However, these are my gripes with every Bobbi gloss. On the other hand, this color is great and it doesn't taste awful, so I keep repurchasing it. I recommend this if you want a great gloss with just a hint of color that will work with many different looks.
Lipstick -Clinique - Colour Surge Bare Brilliance - Poppy Shine
nisey_nyc 3/10/2009 8:21:00 PM
With 15 reviews, a 4.7 rating, and 100% buy-again rating, this product is clearly awesome. I don't know what was going through the Clinique executives' heads when they decided to discontinue this line. This is such a great range of lipsticks, and Poppy Shine simply is the best color. I've been looking for this shade for a long, long time; the closest I found was Trish McEvoy's Sheer Sunpetal, which is way more bronzy. As a pale, freckled blonde with highly-pigmented lips, I have a tough time finding lipsticks. This is a gorgeous coral shade, very orange in the stick, but as the reviewer below noted, much more cool-toned pink when applied to the lips. The tube is beautiful (looks like silver bamboo) and the product doesn't have the icky lipstick smell of many other lines. This is sheer with the tiniest bit of shimmer, so it doesn't look frosty at all. This is the perfect spring/summer shade when paired with tinted moisturizer, bronzer, and a simple eye for a pulled-together weekend look. I recently found this at the Cosmetics Company Outlet and bought 3 tubes @ $10 each. I'm hoping to find some more at Duty Free next time I travel.
My new HG! I thought I had found my HG in Bobbi Brown's new Skin Foundation, but I've changed my opinion as I've worked my way through the bottle--I realize now that I'm between shades, which is a pity--other than that, it's a great product. I went to Sephora looking for a medium-coverage moisturizing foundation in a very travel-friendly bottle, as I'm going on a trip soon and will be bouncing around a lot, so I need something that won't leak with all the packing and unpacking. Breakthrough Performance is the moisturizing foundation in the Performance line; Natural Performance is intended for oily skin and gives a matte finish. This foundation gives a satin finish and comes in the best pump ever; the top swivels and the spout pops out; you just press down to get product out. I find that 2 pumps is plenty for my face and neck. If I don't let my moisturizer sink in completely before applying this, it gets pilly all over my face--that's the only caveat. Other than that, this is a great product! I got some great compliments about how fresh my skin looked, etc. after wearing this to a party on Saturday--and I'd had it on all day with no touch ups! I've tried it with gel blush (Smashbox O-Glow), powder blush, and cream blush--it works with all three. It played nicely with my Bobbi Brown pale yellow pressed powder as well. I also like that the product has an expiration date stamped on the bottom. I got this at Sephora for $38 in SMS1, the lightest shade.