This product is the worst but also good. The worst for my skin, and good for my hair.... I used it on my skin for three weeks. For the first two weeks my skin looked better than it ever had, not a single dry pot, glowy, lovely, THEN on week three, my skin and broke out like I never have before in my entire life. I usually have one small pimple a week (maybe) and usually just before my period. But this gave me blocked pores all over. I had probably 100 blocked pores. All over my forehead even, and I haven't had a single spot there since I was 13 probably. I needed to go to the doctor to get antibiotics for the mess this stuff created. Since it was the only thing I changed, I can say with certainty this is what caused it. Three weeks and two prescriptions later, my face is getting back to normal and most of the blockages have been painstakingly removed. Though now I am struggling with dealing with marks. It ruined my life for weeks and continues to plague me! I strongly advise anyone who has a tendency to breakout not to use sweet almond oil. I have used evening primrose with success and I recommend it - but I just had to try something new.....You have been warned. Knowing it didn't agree with my skin, I started using it on my hair about 30 minutes before I shower. It has been great for dealing with winter split ends. Highly recommended. I probably won't buy it again, but it does as good as a job as any expensive hair mask.
I have very sensitive dry skin. Unfortunately, I have had an increasing tendency for breakouts. I am so glad I reached for this last time I was at the pharmacy. It is exactly what my dry irritated skin needed. It doesn't strip you skin or contain parabens, SLS or other irritating ingredients. It gives you a clean feeling (unlike cetaphil) without the tight dry feeling. It's perfect! My breakouts/skin coloured bumps have calmed considerably when I started using this and my skin is looking better and better. All of this and it is CHEAP! I paid under 7$CAN. I really couldn't tell the difference between the breakout prone version or the sensitive version, but I went with breakout prone just in case. Two downsides which I am willing to overlook: 1. Because it is unscented, people will say it smells bad. Which is true. But I'll take that over potentially irritating fragrances any day. 2. The packaging is pretty ugly to be honest. But, hey, it's just sitting on your shower shelf or medicine cabinet. A small price to pay for happy skin.
This is one of my favorite scents. I get tons of compliments on this. It stays on all day - it is fresh and floral without being too "old" (if that makes any sense). I think it nice for both day and night. My complaints: the silver top on the bottle tarnishes and sometimes the spray can be a bit intense - more of a shot rather than a mist.
Mascara -Maybelline - Great Lash Mascara Blackest Black
northerngal100 2/17/2013 12:02:00 AM
I know, I know - beauty editors top pick, a classic, etc. But this stuff is pretty terrible. It smudges everywhere, goes on thick and goopy - clumping your lashes and leaving a great deal of mess in its wake. The wash-off formula doesn't wash off well, so you end up having to use some almond oil or makeup remover to deal with it. I have naturally long lashes (lucky, I know - too bad they are blond), but I think this stuff makes them look stumpy! The brush leaves much to be desired since there is a lot of space between the bristles. Now, I wasn't using "blackest black" but I think I can safely say that all the colours are likely the same quality of texture. It is only a $1 CAN cheaper than some of the other drugstore brands - and I would take my money elsewhere. Even maybelline makes other great mascaras (I am liking "plush" - even though it is an ugly tube and "full n' soft" never fails). I basically used this for a week and threw it out.
This is one of my favorite powder blushes for a few reasons: 1. It isn't super sparkly. I am not sure when that became a thing - but a lot of mineral products add a ton of unnatural shimmer. 2. The colour is very flattering. It looks very scary in the package, but it goes on in a sheer and buildable way. You definitely can overdo it with this colour though - so start light and add. 3. It lasts a long time - I wouldn't say 12 hours, but probably 6-8. Enough to get home from work and still have a bit of colour. Its the longest lasting powder I own and the next best thing to a stain. 4. It lasts a long time. I have had mine (using daily) for about 8-9 months. I still have some left. 5. It's (more) natural - I like tarte's approach to chemicals: less is more. Downsides: it is expensive & if you drop it, it is definitely going to break - some products hold up a bit better to abuse (this stuff doesn't break from being carried around in your purse though). Overall, I think this looks gorgeous on fair warm skin tones - but also beautiful on medium/olive skin with yellow undertones. It might look a bit weird if you had a really cool skin tone just because it might be a bit jarring. But that's just my opinion.
Primer/ Corrector -L'Oreal - Magic Lumi - Light Infusing Primer
northerngal100 2/16/2013 11:39:00 PM
This is a highlighter, not a primer. If you are expecting a primer with an illuminating finish - try MACs, it has a sensible amount of shimmer. I only use this as a liquid highlighter on my cheekbones on a night out on top of my makeup - and it is nice for that. It is SUPER liquid - not the gel-like texture of your average primer. You would think the consistency would make the dispenser easy to operate, but if this stuff is tipped over in your makeup bag and you go to use the pump - it will likely splatter everywhere...you have been warned. Lastly, on the colour, it is a bright white shimmer and therefore more cool toned than warm. My skin is a bit on the warm side, so I would have liked to have something a bit more on the gold side - but this is from the perspective of using it as a highlighter. My friend is a rep for Loreal, so luckily I got this stuff for free. I wouldn't buy it.
Lotions/ Creams -Olay - Quench Body Lotion Extra Dry Skin
northerngal100 2/16/2013 11:30:00 PM
I don't know about this stuff. It works alright - I don't think it "breaks the cycle of dry skin". My other complaint is that is contains mica - which is what gives it the slightly shimmery look. Honestly, I use this stuff before I go out because it makes your arms and legs look nice (due to the mica probably) but if you just want an intense body moisturizer for at night or after the shower - I would definitely just stick to Curel. I now have two body moisturizers because there is really no point putting something really scented and shiny before sleeping. After this bottle runs out, I probably won't buy again simply because it is more expensive and I just need a good plain moisturizer.
If your skin is every having a massive breakout meltdown, use this! It's no non-sense stuff. It's not meant to remove makeup or anything, I would do that first, then use this and rub genley for a minute, rinse and moisturize like crazy. I have very sensitive skin and I can only use this stuff in absolutely dire situations because it makes my skin extremely dry and using twice a day or even two days in a row is out of the question. I keep it on hand anyway - My friend with oily acne prone skin recommended it and she was right. I used it when I had a crazy hormonal breakout a few months ago and honestly my skin looked way better the next morning. Since I rarely use it (it will last forever) and its pretty inexpensive, I would say this is a very good buy. This is the one killer/harsh product I will use because it works.
I know people love this product - it does hold down shadow for a long time and cover any redness or veins, even in sweaty or humid conditions which are generally unfriendly to makeup; however, I am not a huge fan of the texture. I tend to get dry skin on my eye lids in the winter (I know, gross and weird - almond oil helps) and this really accentuates it. Therefore, it is only useful for me in the summer months. If you have an oily eyelid problem and your makeup smears everywhere or creases - this stuff is likely a godsend. On the other hand, if you have dry skin, you might want to try a primer with a creamier consistency or just avoid primer altogether... I am giving it a three only because I see its potential and it does work in the summer to keep things in check - but I wouldn't buy it again. It is kind of an unnecessary product IMO.
Cleansers -Vichy - Detoxifying cleansing milk for normal to combination
northerngal100 1/29/2013 9:15:00 PM
I don't tend to like the non-rinse milk cleansers. They just generally make my skin feel nasty (especially because I just use micellar and mineral water spray in the morning). Anyway, I tried this even though I have very sensitive dry skin and it is meant for normal to combo. Surprisingly, this has been fine! The main thing for me is no reaction, no dryness, and no breakouts. HOWVER - It really doesn't do a great job of removing eye makeup (I only wear mascara and maybe a touch of sheer beige or bronze eyeshadow) it just kind of smears it around your face. Using a micellar before cleansing with this is a must for me - either that or you would need to do two rounds of washing, which doesn't seem like a good idea. On top of that, it has parabens - which is not ideal. The packaging is average and pretty standard. So I feel ok about this cleanser. I will use it until it is done, but I would not buy again. I am thinking about trying origins mushroom cleanser or la roche posay (both paraben/SLS free)
I really really like this stuff. I am a big fan of using a mineral water after washing with a micellar solution in the morning, and this is mineral water with a little something else. It smells great, is calming, and wakes you up. However, it is really expensive for what it is. I haven't repurchased for this reason. Having a nice smell and a bit of essential oil doesn't matter when I can either get spray mineral water for $10 CAN which will last 6-8 months, rather than a small bottle of this for $25 which will only last a month or two. I have removed one point just for this. That being said, I would buy it again if I could bring myself to spend the money...
I got a sample of this at sephora while looking for light, moisturizing, and brightening serum. It smells lovely, but I would say that is one of its few redeeming qualities. It goes on sticky and if you accidentally apply to much, it balls up when you put other products over it. I need a serum, maybe a dab or two of face oil, then moisturizer - and this is just not meant to layer. It also isn't moisturizing - not that it claims to be - but I think moisture is an essential part of a bright complexion. Anyway - It didn't irritate my skin, cause breakouts, or damage my skin in any way....but it didn't help it either. Overall, I wouldn't buy this. Thank god it was just a sample.
I generally love Avene, but I was not thrilled with this product. I think that the cleanser would be great for oily/combo skin, but it just shredded my skin (maybe my own fault for venturing out of the milk cleanser territory). I am also not a fan of the scent. Anything labelled for sensitive skin that has a scent makes me wonder....The packaging isn't the best either - which is odd because I generally find avene to have sturdy packaging. Although It is very drying, it did seem to do an okay job at removing makeup. I do use a micellar as well, so perhaps that helped it along. Anyway, sadly this stuff is going to be given away or gather dust in the back of the medicine cabinet until I can bring myself to throw it away. Dry skinned ladies, stay away!
Lip Treatments -Fresh - Sugar Lip Treatment in Berry
northerngal100 1/29/2013 8:35:00 PM
LOVE! I don't generally wear lipstick (maybe a old fashioned red 2-3 times a year on special occasions) but this stuff is a great daily pick-me-up for your face. It adds a pop of colour with a quick swipe. I am pretty fair and it doesn't look too dark or bright. I get tons of compliments when I wear this - no one every comments on the lip colour, they just tend to say I look really nice or "fresh". It is my secret weapon. It is pretty expensive ($22 CAN) for a glorified lip balm, but lasts a very long time and works like a charm. I used to be a Fresh Rose lip treatment fan (and still am) but I think this stuff looks so great in the fall and winter.
Guys, this is full of MINERAL OIL. For many people with sensitive skin, this can be an irritant and for people who are acne prone - it can inflame acne. Don't take chances! I bought this initially because I had surgery and wanted it for the scar but saw it was recommended for dehydrated skin. I found that personally, the scent and the mineral oil was not suited for my skin. It felt irritated and dry and very unhappy. I got this tiny little raised bumps on my cheeks (not pimples...it was a rash). I thought my skin was just acting up because of the dry weather and its general sensitive tendencies, but as soon as I stopped using this, my skin calmed back down in a day or two. I threw out my bottle. PS. If you are looking for post-surgery scar treatment, this was ineffective, vitamin e and la roche posay cicaplast works WAY better - my doctor recommended both a week later at my check-in appnt.