Moisturizers -Boscia - Oil Free Daily Hydration SPF 15
scmoonster 8/28/2012 9:11:00 PM
While my skin tends to be dry, it's sensitive to moisturizers that are too oily or creamy (face breaks out). I tried this product as a sample and then went on to buy the full-size. Pros: 1) Lightweight, absorbs quickly, and does provide a matte finish 2) Even though it has SPF, it's not thick and sunscreen-like 3) Comes in a hygienic pump Cons: 1) Not enough moisture for the winter. But bear in mind my skin is dry. May not be great for combo skin where you have dryness too 2) I'm not a big fan of the smell. I used this product for quite a while but couldn't get used to it 3) Pricey for the small amount. I needed about 1.5 pumps for my face, so the 30mL doesn't last long at that rate (less than 6 months) 4) Towards the end, the product is hard to get out. It's a pump, but it's one of those where the product has to be closer to the pump end and so I'd have to squeeze hard upside down (on both of the tubes i purchased). I eventually moved on to Dior's Hydra-Life Pro-Youth SPF fluid. It works better for my dryness, I need less and it comes in a bigger bottle even though a bit more expensive.
This is a great spot treatment. Other spot treatments I've tried in the past all dried out the skin around the pimple too much, causing it to become flaky and even redder. A friend told me to try sulfur-based products and pointed this one out. I have to admit, it's a little pricier, but you don't need a whole lot and the tube should last a while (through expiration date). It really helps decrease the inflammation and redness without over-drying the area, especially since my skin is dry already. For me, it helps get whiteheads to the surface more quickly for removal with a tool. Although sulfur-based products tend to smell bad, the smell of this product has not bothered me at all (maybe I was expecting worse). The only reason for 4 lippies was yes, you have to be careful to only use a little but hard to control coming out of the tube.
Masks -DDF - Sulfur Therapeutic Mask [DISCONTINUED]
scmoonster 8/28/2012 8:34:00 PM
This is a really great mask. I was looking for something to just help detoxify the skin and my friend said she really liked this product. I use it every 1-2 weeks and it makes my skin feel clean and smooth, and helps to prevent breakouts, especially along my chin where I tend to get pimples from stress/hormones. As other reviewers have stated, works great also on current pimples to help get rid of them in a few days and for me this helps prevent scarring as well since the pimples don't get as angry. I have dry skin and have used this all over my face without it drying it out or making it feel tight after use. The tub lasts a long time since I don't use it too often.
I've been using my Shu Uemura curler for years, but heard all this hype about this new curler from Lancome. This product immediately went back to Sephora. For the price, it acts like a cheap drugstore brand. Unlike my Shu, it did not curl my lashes on the first swipe. I also had to watch out for pinching and I could tell if not careful you'd get that ugly 90 degree straight stick-up. I tried pumping my lashes a few more times but stopped because holding a curler for longer periods/harder or having to repeat the curling just to get the curl you want = lash fallout! Trust me, make the investment and get a Shu curler (see my review). It curls so much better than this and in a much easier, shorter amount of time.
HG curler. I've been using this for 3 years straight and no curler compares. I also got it at a bargain of $13 USD in Korea duty-free. You just don't need a lot of pressure to make your lashes curl, hence less lash fallout and no crimping, weird angles on your lashes. Also, never had a problem with pinching, and I get really down to the base of my lashes. I'm done curling my lashes in 10 secs or less. I recently thought I'd try the Lancome Le Curler b/c there was all this hype...it was nowhere near as effective and I immediately returned it to Sephora. When I mentioned to the Sephora rep that my Shu was way better, she asked me why as so many people had told her the same thing and she was thinking about getting it. I told her my reasons and that she should go get it!
I received this as a deluxe sample from Sephora. It was a small 20 gm size that's great for traveling so I took this with me on a 10-day trip for a night-time moisturizer. I suffer from dry skin, but this moisturizer was way too greasy for me. It would not absorb into my skin, and still felt greasy in the morning. My skin did not feel any more moisturized. I gave it 2 lippies b/c it at least did not make my skin break out during that time. Occasionally I will still use it on a really rough dry patch that I can't get rid of, but I've stopped applying it all over my face. I also do not like the smell of the fresh product line. It smells like cucumbers on the verge of going sour...It's a personal thing though i'm sure.
I have enlarged pores both around my nose and chin area (post-acne from high school) and was hoping this product would help with those. I've now come to learn that nothing can completely reverse the size of enlarged pores, but this product has helped with the appearance of them around my nose. Like other reviewers have stated, it may not be dramatic, and it takes time with regular use. Also, it has really helped prevent breakouts around my chin, which are stress or hormonally-related and would then go on to leave scars even if I didn't pick at them. So that alone has been a great plus for me. Since I only use a small amount on these 2 areas twice a day, a bottle lasts me over a year. Certain products do not mix well with it (ie, Hourglass mineral veil primer causes it to rub off) but I've had no trouble so far with the Dior products I'm using.
Eye Shadow -Lancome - Color Design 5 Shadow & Liner Palette
scmoonster 8/28/2012 7:41:00 PM
I absolutely love these palettes. I have 2: Mauve Cherie and Taupe Craze. They are soft and blendable, and the shimmer is classy, not glittery or cheap looking. You don't need much either. I like how you can keep it looking natural or intensify for going out/evening wear. They're not cheap, but they were worth every penny and are probably my new HG palettes (used to be Dior).
Eye Shadow -Josie Maran Cosmetics - Argan Beautiful Eyes - Beautiful Purples
scmoonster 8/28/2012 7:36:00 PM
This is a really hard palette to work with. The 5 colors are really nice looking, in great shades of purple but here are the problems: 1) The shadows are not soft and blendable. As some reviewers mentioned for the single shadows, they seem to just sit on your eye and not blend in nicely. 2) Incredibly hard to pigment. No matter how much shadow you put on, you can't intensify the color. So it stays very natural but not great for a more dramatic, evening finish 3) The smell!!! I don't know if it's the Argan oil base, but after a few months, the palette starts smelling really bad (kind of like BO). I have to hold my breath just to use it now and even a friend of mine commented on it when she was only looking at the palette 4) The mirror bends back too far and makes it difficult to use as your only mirror when applying. I gave it 2 lippies b/c I do like how part of the cost of her products go back to various charities and even back to Morocco where Argan Oil is made, and the products are eco-friendly.
I am really impressed at how relatively cheap this product is (~12 USD) and the results you see in a short amount of time. It really adds fullness and thickness to your lashes, and I could see new lashes develop. The differences were noticeable within the first week! The only reason for 4 lippies was b/c I didn't see much lengthening, and the formula is really thick and hence I didn't like wearing it under my mascara in the morning as it gets clumpy (for full effect you're supposed to use it twice a day). The Urban Decay Lash system is better for lengthening and not as clumpy, but I still switch off with this one to maintain thicker, fuller lashes.
This lash system does work, but it takes time to stick with it to see some results (several weeks to months). One tube does last a while (about 1 year or longer). The reason I only gave it 4 lippies was b/c the results were not as dramatic as the "promise" on the box. I've definitely seen a bit more length, I've seen more lashes grow in, but for me it doesn't do much for thickness (I think the Loreal Lash boosting serum works better for this). I do like how it conditions and does seem to prevent lash fallout. Definitely think this is better than paying 100 USD or more for Latisse.
Primer/ Corrector -Make Up For Ever - HD Microperfecting Primer in 0 Neutral
scmoonster 8/28/2012 6:56:00 PM
I got this primer as part of the HD Complexion Starter Kit. I really just wanted the Kabuki brush and setting powder included in the kit. As such, I can't comment much on the price. I do like the primer and really like the light scent. As other reviewers have mentioned, it doesn't contain silicone and is more moisturizing. I tend to have dry skin, so it absorbed quickly and is not a problem mixing with my Dior Totale concentrate serum and Hydra-Life Pro-Youth Fluid with SPF (I hate when products don't mix and start rubbing off). I use BE powders and they apply evenly over this, no graininess. It sets in place and my face stays soft and smooth all day with no stickiness or blotches. Maybe this product works better for dryer skin types as it does feel more moisturizing.
Cleansers -Aveda - Botanical Kinetics Purifying Gel Cleanser
scmoonster 8/28/2012 6:24:00 PM
This has been my HG cleanser for the past 3 years. Even though my skin tends to be dry, I prefer gel cleansers b/c my face is sensitive and something in cream cleansers tends to give me breakouts. This cleanser really gets your face clean (little to no leftover makeup left when I use my toner after) but it doesn't leave it feeling dry or stripped. It foams well so you don't need much. I first tried it as they had samples at a Korean hotel while I was vacationing. It worked so well and my complexion felt so much better that I purchased a big pump bottle right when I got home. 2 big bottles have lasted me 3 years now. I would imagine it's a good product for for oilier skin too (as it's marketed for).
Moisturizers -Christian Dior - Capture Totale Multi-Perfection Creme
scmoonster 8/21/2012 9:13:00 PM
While it sounds as if this product is not for everyone, it has really worked for me. I have dry skin, especially in the winter times, and this has really helped prevent those rough, dry, peeling patches I hate. I only use it at night, but it absorbs quickly, leaves my face super soft and supple in the morning to the point where I don't even have to wash it (unlike other greasier moisturizers). I do have sensitive skin but no allergies and I have not had any breakouts or reactions, but I only use a very small amount at night in the winters, which helps me to conserve the product as it is pricey. I don't mind the smell at all, and while that's very person-specific, there is no chemical-like smell to it.
Top/Base Coats -Sephora - Sephora by OPI - Flurry Up topcoat
scmoonster 8/21/2012 8:58:00 PM
I like that you can wear this polish by itself or on top of another color. The differing sizes of the glitter is a nice touch too. It works really well as a top coat, in that I don't notice any chipping for about a week (without reapplying), which is amazing for me. I work in healthcare and constantly wash my hands, and usually by about 2 days, I'll notice major chipping or cracks in the polish unless I reapply a top coat the day before. I also have the indigo-with-the-flow one which is nice too. The only reason for a 4: On the flip side, it is hard to get off. Using the professional strength remover (I think it's just straight acetone) works better than the enriched ones that are not so hard on your hands/nails. Your nails will be really dry and need a lot of lotion after though, but I just don't have the patience to use a softer remover for tough jobs like this.