Isadora usually does lots of very conventional shades that don't really catch my attention, but this new one is great. It's a deep dark olive green with golden and green micro-glitter / specks. The closest shades are Nars Mash, L'Orťal Night Owl, and China Glaze Wagon Trail. The formula is surprisingly good, the polish glides easily and is perfectly opaque and even in two coats. The brush however is weird: it's short and incredibly wide, almost as wide as my pinky nail. I don't really bother but those with very narrow nail beds might have issues to apply the polish. The wear is very good, the picture I've taken was 3 days after application, as you can see there's no chipping and only minor tip wear.
My skin is very dry on my forehead and around my nose, so all foundations (even tinted moisturizers) tend to flake on these areas. The SA at the LancŰme counter tried La Base on me with the LancŰme tinted moisturizer with a satisfying result. I checked in the mirror a couple of hours later and there were still no dry patches to be seen. I received a sample to try at home so I used it a couple of time with my own foundation (Make Up For Ever Face & Body). It was very nice to use because it feels satiny on the skin, and the foundations glides very smoothly over the base. Unfortunately the air-brushed look didnít last all day. After a few hours my forehead and cheeks showed some flakiness. I canít really judge if this product extends the wear of foundations because my skin is not oily therefore foundations donít fade a lot on me anyway, but I didnít see any difference. Looking at the ingredients list (well... silicone, and more silicone), I really feel that you only pay for the brand. Basically, this primer creates a film between the skin and the make-up, but there are no specific ingredients to either moisturize dry skin or to control oiliness on combo / oily skins. At $42 a bottle this is definitely not something Iím gonna buy in full size.
If I had to keep only two eyeshadows I think it would be Satin Taupe and Patina. Patina is so gorgeous and versatile, it feels like I could blend it with any other shade and get a nice looking result. This is a very work appropriate light golden taupe, but not bland at all. It compliments my eye colour incredibly well, but Iím pretty sure it works as good with any eye colour. Thereís not fallout at application and it wears all day, I only wish the colour pay-off was a bit better. Even on my fair skin it needs to be applied quite heavily to get enough pigmentation, so I guess it might not work so well on darker skins.
I usually donít wear brown because I think it doesnít compliment my skin tone very well, but when I saw the swatch for this polish I thought that I should enlarge my polish collection with this particular brown. And it was a wise decision. This shade is too gorgeous. It is a kind of dusty medium brown / dark taupe packed with very fine golden shimmer. The weather is horrible for the moment so I didnít get a chance to see it under direct sunlight, but Iím very happy to see that the golden shimmer is still noticeable indoors, so it never looks plain brown. Formula is perfect, shiny and as smooth as a plain creme. The brush is precise and the polish glides on the nail effortlessly, and it gets completely opaque in two coats. If you donít own a similar colour, this is a must-have fall shade.
This eyeshadow looks fabulous in the pan, unfortunately a bit better than it does on the eyelid. In the pan itís a vibrant emerald green and brown duochrome. As usual with MAC, the texture is very easy to work with, except some minor fallout. The colour is not true to pan, on the lid it looks plum brown with only a hint of green shimmer. The main issue I have with Club is the wear.. With a base, usually my make-up barely fades at the end of the day, but this particular shade vanishes after a few hours only, that's the first time I experience that with a MAC shadow. Thatís a shame because I love the colour.
I bought this mask to deep cleanse my sensitive, yet clogged skin. I used it for a couple of months, and it did... absolutely nothing. The first times I used it I liked it because it smells mint, so it feels fresh and clean, but I quickly realized that my skin didnít look any better. If I had oilier skin I would maybe have noticed an improvement, but it doesn't help to get rid of blackheads or cleanse pores at all. On top of that, the scrub is way too harsh for my sensitive skin. It is also a mess to clean up because when you massage the skin, the dried product falls and creates a disgusting green and brown goo in the sink.
Lipstick -By Terry - Rouge Terrybly in 100 Terrybly Nude
nordavind 11/14/2011 1:17:00 PM
This lipstick is perfect for fair skins with cool undertones. Lots of nude colours will make me look weird and sick, especially if they are yellow based, but this lipstick is not a foundation-like nude. Itís a very creamy, pink based nude that is slightly lighter than my lips carnation. It looks very classy with a smoky eyes. The formula is surprisingly moisturizing, smooth and buttery (so buttery that it tends to drag a bit if applied to quickly, even on bare lips). The wear is great for such a light shade, I would say 4 hours including eating and drinking, and it fades in a very natural way. I haven't notice any of the claimed "push-up" effect though. Packaging is very luxurious: a beautiful silver shiny metal case with a magnetized cap (love this!). The pack also includes a very feminine violet pouch if you want extra protection when the lipstick is in your purse. Hopefully it doesnít taste anything but it has a delicious rose smell.
This polish belongs to the Polished Chic Fall 2011 collection from Nubar, and this is my favourite shade this season. This is a dusty teal creme that looks very elegant yet cutting-edge with a black outfit. It is not too bright, therefore appropriate at work, but still colourful enough not to look dull. The shade has a good balance between blue and green, but it leans slightly towards blue. The formula is perfect, it is so creamy it almost applies by itself. The polish is not thick but still opaque in one coat. You can do two coats to have a flawless finish but one thick coat is good enough. I also like Nubar's packaging: good medium size brush, convenient rubber brush handle, pretty bottle.
Iím not a bronzer person because it usually looks so fake on my fair skin. But this summer I got more tanned than usual (NW25+) so I wanted to try a peach blusher to enlarge my collection which consisted of pinks only. I ended up buying this Cargo blusher because I was also interested in having a face powder that could work on my almost medium skin tone. Itís a very good multi-purpose product that Iíve been using the whole summer. I blend lightly all 4 colours on my face to unify my skin tone (insisting more on the beige/brown side), and I apply only the two pink/peach shades on the cheeks. Applied with a light hand, it enhances the natural summer glow without looking orangey. The pigmentation is good, but still sheer enough to achieve a natural look. The finish is completely matte, which is great for people like me who donít really like having shimmer all over the face. I have dry skin, and the powder doesnít accentuate dry patches, and it doesn't wear off that easily. I find the packaging cute and compact, but the lid is not so convenient and sometimes hard to open.
My skin is dry and sensitive, meaning that I get very easily red, with flaky patches around my nose and on the cheeks, but I still need a product that prevents my pores from being clogged on the t-zone. This exfoliator sure is gentle but Iím not really convinced by it efficiency. The product is a rather runny beige cream with an oily texture. The exfoliating beads are round, soft and very fine (finer than caster sugar). The smell is light and pleasant (no added fragrance), it slightly reminds me of clay. To get it to work, I need to apply a large amount of product on clean, dry skin. If I only use a regular (pea size) amount and/or if my face is wet, it feels like Iím trying to scrub my face with a moisturizer. So yes, my skin doesnít turn all red and irritated, but whatís the point if it doesnít get rid of dead skin? I think this is just a marketing trick to make sensitive skin people believe that they can use mechanical scrubs without downside effects.
My skin is dry / sensitive and tends to turn red, flaky and tight if Iím using inappropriate product. I need a moisturizing cleanser but I donít like the cream cleansers that donít rinse off because my pores get easily clogged on the t-zone. On paper, the hydra-calm cleanser fulfils all my needs because it is a milk than can be washed off. First, the product is organic and doesnít contain any harsh chemicals. I can really feel it when I apply the milk on my skin: no redness, no irritations, no unwanted reactions at all, the soothing claim is accurate. I found the smell a bit weird in the beginning, but it has grown on me. I reminds me of old-fashioned cosmetics (I guess itís calendula) but it is not overpowering. REN also did a great job on the packaging, it is sleek, hygienic and solid. The pump makes it very easy to get the right amount of product and there is absolutely no waste at the end of the tube. I have almost finished one bottle and Iím a bit on the edge about this product, because even if thereís a lot to like, I feel that it doesnít do what it is supposed to do: cleanse the face. Even when Iím using a lot of product it feels like it just glides on the surface of the skin without dissolving the impurities. Used as a make-up remover it is as efficient as plain water, even the light coverage foundations will resist, unless you use a face brush and scrub (which is probably not what somebody with sensitive skin would do...). In addition, even if Iím not at all prone to breakouts it did notice that I get pimples on the chin/jaw area more often. Iím not sure if the cleanser is the one to blame because my skin is rather unpredictable, but it is still worth mentioning it. I really wanted to like this cleanser but I wonít buy it again. Iíve not been too harsh on the rating because I guess it might work on other types of skins, but for those with a sensitive combination skin I would strongly recommend to stay away.
In my eternal search of the perfect top coat I was very excited to find a free mini bottle of this one in an order I made that included several Nubar polishes. I really love Nubar so I was very optimistic, but it didnít live up to my expectations. Application was not as smooth as I thought it would be. Maybe the brush of the full size polish is better, but the one I have is too small and scratchy. It drags the polish underneath very easily, so it is important to pack the brush with product to avoid brush strokes. The finish is shiny but gets dull the next day (I experience the same problem with Seche Vite). It doesn't chip easily and there is no shrinkage at all. I know this top coat is not specifically marketed as fast drying, but I was hoping for a good surprise since other reviewers raved about the short drying time. It performs better than basic top coats (like OPI TC for instance), but it is not that good. Yes, it is dry to the touch after 5 minutes, but the layers underneath stays wet for quite a long time. I dented both thumb nails half an hour after application when I tied the button of my pants, and at the end of the day my nails were covered with light scratches on the surface.
Top/Base Coats -Poshe - Super-Fast Drying Top Coat
nordavind 11/7/2011 1:27:00 PM
This fast drying top coat is for the moment the best I found to replace Seche Vite. It is 3-big free, cheap, not so difficult to find online, and easy to apply. The first time I used it I experienced some bubbling because I was used to Seche Vite which requires a thick coat of polish to apply evenly. The texture of this top coat is thinner and doesnít drag the polish that is underneath so easily, so it requires a lighter hand to get a smooth finish without bubbles. Other than that, application is effortless, the top coat glides on the nail like butter. The brush feels kinda cheap, but I still like it because it is rather wide so it needs only a few strokes to get the nail done, and itís long enough to go to the bottom of the bottle (less product waste). I also noticed that it performs well to even out brush strokes or minor dents from the color polish. The finish is unfortunately not as glossy as Seche, and it is not as fast drying either: the polish is dry to the touch in 5 minutes, but it is still dentable for an hour or so. I use Qtica Half-time polish drying accelerator to speed up the process. On the other hand, it doesnít dry out the nail, doesnít stink, doesnít thicken after 3 uses and doesnít shrink like SV does.
This is the first fast drying top coat Iíve ever used, and if I had reviewed it at that time I would have given it the HG status without a doubt. From dented, sheet-marked and dull-looking manicures I discovered how a homemade manicure could look perfectly smooth, glossy, professional looking in no time. I like the application, even if it takes a few applications to get the technique under control. When working quickly and with a sufficient amount of product on the brush, the polish underneath stays intact and the result is very shiny, almost like glass. After application, life is almost back to normal within 5 minutes: polish is dry enough to do basic stuff like putting on a jacket, a pair of shoes, and go out. Ten minutes later, everything is possible: cooking, washing dishes, being clumsy and knock your nails on sharp objectsÖ Iím still searching for a top coat with such a short drying time. Unfortunately, none of the brands Iíve tried can compare with SV, even Poshe and Lippmann Addicted to Speed. Hereís why I donít use Seche anymore: - First of all itís not big 3-free and Iím not very comfortable with that, especially because I often have my nails close to my mouth (former mail biterÖ). - I donít experience major shrinkage but I do notice tip-wear-like shrinkage when the polish has fully dried. - The impressive high gloss finish fades within the next day. - It stinks badly, it really feels toxic - The brush is too short compared to the bottle so a lot of product is wasted. - As long as I used Seche Vite, my nails were dry and peeled easily, and polishes started to chip after a couple of days. But to be fair I canít determine if it was SV or OPI base coatís fault because I stopped using both products at the same time. Iím still keeping a small bottle in case of emergency, but the best ďnot so expensiveĒ replacement I found is Poshe combined with some quick dry drops (I use the ones from Qtica).
This was my first matte polish purchase and the colour looked amazing on swatches so I was pretty excited to try this on my nails. The colour is fun and true to bottle, but unlike other bright blue colours I own, this one didn't compliment my light skin tone and I felt a bit tacky wearing this. I found the formula terrible, but to be fair, I think I made my life quite difficult by refusing to paint it on bare nails. I was afraid to stain my nails with this bright colour so I decided to give it a try over my usual base coat (Essie Protein BC). But apparently matte polishes drag awfully if the nail bed is too smooth, so I struggled to avoid bald spots AND visible brush strokes. After 3 coats I got an acceptable result, but I consider myself as rather skilled at applying polish and I really didn't enjoy working with this one. And on top of all the polish managed to stain a couple of nails anyway (still there several weeks later). Some basic advice to achieve a decent looking manicure: skip the base coat, work as fast as you can, the fewest brush strokes the better, Never Ever apply polish twice on the same spot because it will only make things worse, wait until the polish is completely dry before applying a new coat. To remove the polish, use the aluminium foil wrapping technique if you don't want your fingers to turn bright blue.