After reading all of the rave reviews, I went on a hunt for this powder and finally found a Shoppers Drug Mart that carried this line. While I am very impressed by the quality of Essence products, this powder made me break out. I would not recommend this if you have sensitive skin. I used this only for a few days and I broke out like I have never broken out all year. I had cystic acne all over my forehead, which took weeks and a chemical peel later, to go away. Like others have said, this has tons of fall out and the packaging needs to include a mirror for touch ups. This does a good job of mattifying and it can be layered for sheer to heavier coverage. I have stopped using this and am now using Clinique Almost Powder, which my skin does not react to.
I bought this because I like glitter and wanted to layer this on my cheekbones overtop blush for a glitter effect. When I swatched this with my finger on my wrist, there was a pretty layer of glitter along with a very light detection of highlighter. However, when I took this home and applied this with a highlighting blush, this did not show up at all on my NC 35 medium tanned skin. There was no color (despite the fact that it looks pale pink in the pan) and no glitter :( I thought that this would be like Super Orgasm in a highlighter version but I was very disappointed. In order for the highlighter to show, I would have to pile a very heavy layer of this on, which at that point, would look cakey and powdery. Overall, this does not work for tanned skin tones but I imagine this would be very pretty on pale or lighter skin tones. Sadly I had to return this.
I love the formula of this lipstick. It is similar to the MAC cremesheen formula but slightly drier/less sheen. This can be layered to be opaque and has no bad taste/odor like some brands. Also, the packaging is very high quality. The lid twists on and is held secure by a magnet, so that it would not come off when it is in your purse. However, this color makes my lips look completely washed out despite the fact that I have a tanned complexion (NC 35-40). At first, I thought it was the lighting but I have been using this everyday for over a month, so I have had the chance to see this shade in all types of lighting. Whenever I put this on, I look like I'm sick and pale, so I have had to layer a pink gloss over top of this to bring some color back to my face. Overall, I love the formula but I would recommend this in another shade.
Highlighters -Joe Fresh Style - "Champagne" highlighter
prncss 11/7/2012 12:24:00 PM
I spend a fortune on makeup but honestly, this is the best $8 I've spent all year. I've tried a lot of highlighting products such as Benefit's Watt's Up, Benefit's High Beam, Smashbox Photo Op and Smashbox Softlights, but in terms of cream highlighters, Joe Fresh is the best! First off, this can easily be applied with the fingers and it is the perfect slippery texture, which is neither runny and wet, nor thicky and cakey. You only need to apply a light touch of the finger on the compact and you have the perfect amount to smooth onto the cheekbones, brow arch, cupid's bow, and the inside corner of the eye. This gives a very very NATURAL looking glow, without looking artificial. I find that Benefit's Watt's Up is on the thick side and can look unnatural. With the Joe Fresh highlighter, you only need a little bit so I can see this lasting me for a very long time, even with daily use. Because it is a cream highlighter, you need to be careful because if you put too much on, you will look like a lightbulb. I do not find this difficult to apply or to get the right amount (as I do with the Watt's Up). This saves time with application because it can be applied with fingers instead of a brush. I'm not a big fan of liquid or pump highlighters because it is sooo difficult to get the right amount out of the bottle. For example, the Josie Maran Argan highlighter pumps out way more product than needed, which is wasteful. As well, the packaging is compactand travel friendly and easy to throw into the purse without adding bulk. I love this highlighter! I would definitely recommend this.
Lip Gloss -Josie Maran Cosmetics - Argan High Gloss Lip Quench
prncss 11/6/2012 11:59:00 PM
This comes in a clear gloss squeeze tube and it is literally oil in a tube. Josie Maran's regular Argan oil is very thin, so they have added Jojoba oil to thicken this gloss for lips. This costs $19 CAD for 8ml (0.3 fl oz.) and claims to be made with 100% natural ingredients. I love Josie Maran products and I was curious to try this. I am obsessed with plumping products and lip conditioners, and have tried a huge variety of products (ie. LipFusion gloss, LipInfatuation, LipFusion conditioning stick, Dermaglow Lip Plumper, Buxom). I receive Juvederm lip augmentations on a regular basis and was looking for a conditioning treatment to keep my lips hydrated and plump without an annoying tingling or stinging sensation. The first three times I tried this product, I hated it. This gloss is thick, gooey, and it smells like oil, but in a bad way. There is a slightly nutty scent and feels like you have a thick slab of oil on your lips. As this is a gloss and not a balm, this cannot be applied underneath lipstick because it is so thick that the lipstick would not stick to your lips. However, after a few days of getting used to the texture and smell, I noticed that as soon as I put this on, this absorbs very quickly into my lips and plumps them better than any lip plumping balm I have tried on the market. This is not even advertised as a lip plumper. Within a minute of applying this, I could see visible results immediately. My lips increased in volume with better results than any other plumpers I've tried. My lips also appeared smoother, and had a healthy glow. Some balms leave a thin white film on your lips but this does not show anything. What I love about this is that it is all natural, so I can feel at ease leaving this on my lips overnight. Personally I would use this as a lip treatment rather than a daytime use gloss, unless you only wear gloss and not anything else. For daytime use I am still going to stick to my LipFusion gloss. Overall, this product delivers good conditioning results. I gave it 4 lippies because I do not like the smell or texture. But if you can get past it, this absorbs quickly into the skin and does not feel tacky afterwards.
I bought this because of the beautiful packaging and the brush was not too dense (ie. Like BadGal lash, which doesn't work on my sparse and short wimpy asian lashes). However, this does absolutely nothing for my lashes. The formula does not coat my lashes at all and even after putting on 3 coats, my lashes do not have any extra volume or length. I imagine this would give you feathery lashes if you had thick eyelashes, but this does not work for short skimpy lashes. Even as a layering mascara, this does nothing. I am going to be sticking with drugstore mascaras from now on. This costs $33 CAD per tube.
I swear by Revlon Lip Butters (I'm on my 5th tube in 2 months ever since I discovered them), but I figured that I would give this a try after seeing the pretty shade on the model in the magazine ad. I went out and bought the exact shade on the model, Rose Elixir, expecting a light coral pink color. However, this went on virtually sheer. It made my lips slightly darker than they normally are but this deposits virtually no color (unlike the Revlon Lip Butters). I'm guessing the model has some sort of lip primer on underneath or naturally unpigmented lips. Either way, I figured I could use this as a lip balm underneath lipstick but even as a lip balm, this dried out my lips. I like that the texture does not feel heavy, greasy or sticky. It has a nice light sheer texture. However, this does not moisturize my lips at all. I feel like I have to re-apply constantly and my lips still feel dry. Even as a lip balm, this does not work for me. I will be going back to the Revlon Lip Butters. It is a shame because the packaging is so pretty and high quality.
I take a minimum of two baths per day and all of my life I've been using bath bombs, milk powders, bubble baths, bath products from Lush, and Bath and Body Works. A girlfriend gave me a bag of Epsom Salts as a gift, knowing that I liked taking baths so much. All that I can is Wow! I can't believe that I've been wasting my money all these years on junk bath products. Sure, the other products might have good scents but all of them fail in comparison to Epsom Salts. With these salts, I actually notice a difference in my mood. The salts actually help to relieve tension and stress, and I can actually feel the toxins being drawn out from my body. It feels like a magnet drawing things away from my body. When I'm done taking a bath, not only do I feel relaxed but this also relieves the tension and sore muscles in my neck, shoulders, and back. I also love how it changes the texture of the water. Where I live in Canada, we have hard water and the salts soften the water and make the bath water feel silky on my skin. I am a true believer of epsom salts and I will never go back to any other bath product again!
Treatments -Olay - Regenerist Daily Thermal Mini-Peel
prncss 8/31/2012 3:49:00 AM
I paid $30 CAD for this, which is pricey for a drugstore product, but I was willing to splurge because I have had good results with glycolic acid. I am experienced with 10% glycolic creams and 30% glycolic acid chemical peels, which I found fast results that gave me smoother, clearer, and radiant skin. So, I was really excited to try this. I am not sure what percentage of glycolic acid is in this peel, but I think it may be a low percentage. I used this everyday for a few months (one bottle goes a long way, as I only use a dime-sized amount each time). However, I was very disappointed with this because after daily use for 3 months, I did not notice any improved different in my skin. Furthermore, while the metallic packaging is unique, it punctures easily. My bottle developed a hole in it somehow and I had to curl it like a toothpaste tube to get any product out of it. Like others have said, this has a warming sensation that fades away quickly but this is gimmicky as there were no improvements to my skin. I much prefer the Olay Pro X line, such as the exfoliating cleanser, paired with my Pro X brush. I would not purchase this again.
Treatments -Alterna - Bamboo Smooth Kendi Oil Dry Oil Mist
prncss 8/13/2012 8:00:00 PM
I love this stuff!! I live in a dry climate, so my hair gets quite dry especially in the winter. This mist is lightweight and does not weigh my hair down nor leave my hair greasy. I love that this is a fine mist so it distributes the product evenly. I love this way more than my HG Biosilk because I find that the mist is much lighter on my hair and less messy to apply (It doesn't get all over my hands). My only gripe about this is the price. It costs $27 CAD for 125 mL. For that price, it should come with more product because daily use with this bottle has only lasted a few months. I have since found a similar drugstore product called Organix Moroccan Argan Oil. It costs $10 for 118 mL and requires less spritzes than the Alterna one. Though it is argan oil and not kendi oil, I find that it works the same on my hair. Love it.
If you're like me and don't have much experience with lining the waterline, then you may like this formula because it goes on really creamy and smoothly without tugging at the eye. I find with drier formulas, I really need to use much effort and force, and it does not glide on easy. This makes my eyes look brighter and bigger. However, there are a few negatives. As others said, this is more of a off-white shimmer. I wish they had a matte white version in the waterproof. Although the cream formula is easy to apply without irritating the water line, it also smudges off easily. If you are someone that rubs your eyes a lot, this does not stay on or have much lasting power. As well, I find that all of the prestige pencils (though I love them) need to be re-sharpened often which can be annoying. As another reviewer below said, I will try the E-30 shade next but that shade does not come in the same formula. Overall I gave this 4 lippies for ease of application.
Mascara -Christian Dior - Diorshow New Look Mascara
prncss 8/2/2012 5:59:00 PM
I love the little brush because this works great on asian eyes with sparse lashes. The bristles coat all the tiny hairs at the corner of my eyes and the formula seems to be wetter than the regular DiorShow, which I find to be dry (or perhaps its the brush design that makes the formula seem wetter since this is a plastic brush instead of the traditional kind). The regular DiorShow dries out so fast and at $35 CAD a tube, it is painful to throw out every couple of months not from frequency of use but because the tube has dried out. I gave this 3 lippies because I like the small brush and wet formula (price aside) but I only like this as a lengthening and separating mascara. This absolutely does nothing for volumizing at all, unless you put 4 coats on but who has time for that? Considering the expensive price of this mascara and the fact that this does not volumize at all, I can see why this has such a low rating. I use this only as a primer mascara. If you are looking for a similar and cheaper alternative to this, I would recommend New York Color's High Definition Volumizing Mascara. This is a similar brush design with very similar results for $4. I do enjoy using this but due to the high price, I will not repurchase and will stick to drugstore mascaras.
I love the shade of this highlighter on my NC35 tanned skin but this needs to be applied with a light hand. Otherwise, this has a tendency to look too luminous due to its cream texture. I have been using this everyday for 2 months. This is easy to apply and blend because it can be applied directly from the tube onto my face. I apply this at the top of my cheekbones, above my eyebrows, down the bridge of my nose, at the bow of my lips and center of my chin, where the night naturally reflects to give my skin a radiant, refreshed, and dewey look. However, I much rather prefer powder highlighters such as Smashbox soft lights because too often, I apply too much in my washroom and my face looks like a disco ball when I'm in natural light. I find this also happens to me with Benefit's liquid version High Beam. This is not my first experience with stick highlighters either. Wet n' wild had a version of this that I loved because the formula was drier and looked more natural. Unfortunately, they discontinued that. I also find the packaging to be gimmicky with the sponge applicator on the other end. I never use that end, as this can just be blended with your finger. I will finish this but I will not repurchase.
Eye Shadow -Urban Decay - 24/7 Glide-On Shadow Pencil in Rehab
prncss 8/2/2012 5:29:00 PM
I got this in the sampler set and this is by far my most favorite shade. The color is a vibrant deep bronze color that, in my opinion, would look good on any skin tone. This is a perfect color for both day and evening wear. It is the perfect in-between tone because it shows up on tanned skin and yet it is a refreshing color for a smokey eye if you are looking for an alternative to black eyeshadow. This pairs beautifully with bronzed/tanned skin. On my NC35 asian skin, this color gives me a beachy look and looks great with dewey skin, especially in the summer when you might be leaning towards bb creams or tinted moisturizers. This color really makes my eyes pop whether I am wearing clear contact lens (brown eyes) or my purple or blue contacts. Love love love this! In terms of the lasting power, I have varied results. Sometimes the color creases and fades throughout the day (even paired with my beloved NARS eyeshadow primer) and other times this lasts until the next day. I live in the prairies in Canada though so the climate may have something to do with this. All in all, a great buy. I love the ease of application and this saves me so much time compared to a powder eyeshadow. This is great for travelling or popping in your purse, and it does not need to be sharpened often (which can be annoying on some pencils). This is also easy to blend with the fingers. Love it.
I love the pretty metallic tube. I think Rimmel has the nicest packaging for drugstore mascaras. However, this mascara does not add volume at all as marketed. This is okay as a primer mascara for lengthening and separating lashes because the little grooves in the wand coat all of my sparse lashes evenly without clumping but it definitely needs to be paired with a volumizing mascara if you want thick lashes. This does not smudge or make your lashes feel crusty but I prefer Maybelline's Lots of Lashes mascara to this, in terms of a primer/lengthening mascara.