I avoided aragan oil for a long time simply because I thought it would be one of those over hyped products that doesn't do anything for me. I actually quite like this oil! I am sure it is way over priced but I llike that it is straight up organic aragan oil... no random preservatives or other oils with aragan listed LAST in the ingredients list. I have tried using this in several ways but what I seem to stick with is using it as an eye serum and for my hair. I only bought the small bottle back in Feb. and it is still 3\4ths full with regular use. A couple times a week I replace my eye cream at night with a drop or 2 of this. I will also pat what is leftover onto my cheeks and forehead but avoid my chin as it tends to get oily already and is breakout prone. It does take a while to soak in but feels nice and soothing. I don't find that I am oily in the morning so I know it eventually soaks in which is reassuring! I enjoy that this does not have a scent, natural or otherwise. I do not have very bad wrinkles so I cannot attest to it fixing them but I have found my eyes being less red and puffy after using this and am trying it as a preventative method for crows feet. For my hair I add it to a heat protectant serum or lotion only before I blowdry my hair, as it is supposed to be heat activated in that sense. I use 2 drops and a quaarter of the serum I normally would, blowdry half way then let my hair air dry. My pin straight fine hair is left shiny, voluminous and smooth. Considering how long this has lasted me and the different ways I use it, I will most likely repurchase when I finally run out and think it is worth a shot for anyone on the fence!
I have combo\sensitive skin and this foundation works great for me. I have the 2nd lightest shade (buff) which is perfect for my fair yellow toned skin. This foundation is a thick whipped consistancy and it takes very little product for my entire face. I find that placing small dots around my face, then blending with a flexible flat top brush works best for me as I do not like using my hands. It is a medium coverage foundation that covers redness and acne marks very well while feeling quite light almost the same feeling as after putting on a primer. It blends beautifullly with ease and doesn't set into pores or fine lines. I have worn this with\without a setting powder and it actually lasts both ways which is impressive. I tend to set it lightly with a translucent powder most days. I live in an area that is rather humid, do not blot or mess with my makeup throughout the day, have an oily t-zone and I've had 0 issues with my face melting off and absolutely no transfer: again impressive! This has quickly become my go to foundation. I am unsure if this will work for me in the winter as my skin gets pretty dry and I have to moisturize really well before using it now but this is an essential for summer.
I have somewhat sensetive skin but I really wanted to find a chemical exfoliating product that wouldn't be too harsh. This did the trick. I bought it at a BOGO sale so I have the full size and paid about 2 bucks for it. The mask is a very different texture... a clear gel with tiny exfoliating beads. The gel spread nicely (quarter sized amount) and dries flexible, you can still feel it on your face but nothing like clay masks. There were points where my face burned a little but it wouldn't last long at all. The smell is alright, obviously like pineapple but light enough not to bother me. I am not a huge fan of tropical fruits, so I kind of expected it to. After about 15 minutes I rinsed with warm water and my skin was a little tender and red. I applied some aloe and moisturizer then left my face alone for the rest of the day. The next night I went to a friends wearing a little concealer and eyeliner, as I typically do, and everyone was asking if I had done something different, saying I looked nice. I had just bought a new eyeliner and thought that was it. Once I got home I realized how bright my complexion was, even after removing my makeup. Then I realized what I had done different... the mask! It actually worked! I was a little shocked that a 2 product can do what many 15-20 dollar products couldn't. I am extremely gentle with my skin for a day or 2 after, and only use this once a week. I would say more dry or even oily skin types could use with less caution, more often.
Mascara -L'Oreal - Waterproof Voluminous Carbon Black
sgilber 4/21/2012 3:37:00 PM
This mascara did not work for me at all. The formula is very black but way too wet: a bad combination! It smudges like crazy, and I found it difficult to apply as well. I have thin sparse lashes and this mascara made them crunchy and droopy. It smudges almost right after application. There was really nothing positive except the natural brush, which I prefer. I paid around 6 bucks at Target for mine. I have tried using it before and after my go to mascara and nothing seemed to work out. I really wanted to like this as I have seen so many youtubers use it, but I feel better after seeing reviews here!
This product was such a dissapointment for me. First it has a ton of tiny shimmer particles that are obvious and get everywhere! Next it has a really strong chemical smell that lingers around for a long time after applied, which was unexpected from Aveeno. Their products typically smell fantastic! Although being focused on natural ingredients you would think it would have less chemicals, have physical spf and be fragrance free... oh well. At around 15 bucks the price is steep for a drug store product. I have to say the fact it has sunscreen and a pump bottle are the best qualities, as the product left my face super shimmery and greasy. I have sensetive combo skin and tinted moisturizer typically works well for me as long as I set it with a powder. Putting aside I can't stand the smell, I did manage to try setting with a powder. After a light dusting of powder it still looked greasy and any more powder looked muddy and cakey. The consistency is a little watery but blends well, and evens out skin tone a little, but is just TOO moisturizing. It doesn't really sink into the skin either, just adds a layer on my face, which I can't stand. I tried mixing it with a thicker foundation which was better, but didn't help with the shimmer or smell (obviously!) So I gave it to my friend who seems to like it alright. I would say if you can get over the smell and have really dry skin or want to add it to foundation, for a really dewy finish, it might work out but you could probably find a cheaper/better alternative.
This concealer is 5 bucks or so, has great packaging considering it is from the drug store and it works! First I have to say that I am not normally a fan of the little brushes attatched to concealers these days. It is a waste of product and difficult to control. Rimmel is quite clever though. Instead of the container being plastic with a clicker, it is in a squeezable tube. This intrigued me, so I picked one up. I am pale so I got the lightest shade but as with most Rimmel products the color selection is poor and if you have darker skin you're outa luck. The tube is easy to control, squeeze gently and the product slowly disppenses, and the brush doesn't bother me as I just use it to dot the product around my eyes then blend with my own brush. The container makes it so there is hardly any product left on the brush to dry out which is nice. The consistency is not too thick but creamy enough and It doesn't cake or settle. (even when I thought I had used too much) It conceals my moderate purpelish toned circles and brightens a tad, without shimmer or glitter. I set it lightly with a powder and it holds up very well throughout the day. Glad I stumbled across this drug store gem!
Lotions/ Creams -Alba Botanica - Un-petroleum Multi-Purpose Jelly
sgilber 4/8/2012 5:46:00 AM
This is a wonderful natural product that can be used in such a variety of ways! I used to be a die hard fan of Aquaphor until I tried this natural alternative that actually benefits AND protects the skin. First if I had children I would definately use this prduct instead of petroleum based products... but I don't. SO I love using this as a lip treatment most nights. I also use it once or twice a week as an eye, face, or neck treatment, depending on how my skin is acting. Remember to use oh so sparingly though! Sometimes I even warm up a small amount in my hands and apply it to the ends of my hair overnight. It contains coconut oil known to penetrate the hair shaft extremely well, working as a deep conditioning treatment. (I always tie my hair up and only do this when I wash my hair the next morning) My boyfriend uses this on his nasty cracked feet as well, considering that he has used it more than once means it must work. Really, the list goes on! The only thing I would not do is wear it under makeup (obviously) or during the day on my face. SHINE central! I have somewhat acne prone skin and it has never reacted badly to this, but the first couple times I used it I was worried beacause it felt like it would lead to clogged pores. It doesn't, it sinks into the skin by the time I wake up leaving it plump and soft. *I do not applly this where I have active breakouts*
Skincare - Body -Unlisted Brand - Fruit of the Earth Aloe Vera Gel
sgilber 4/1/2012 4:31:00 AM
I have always had aloe gel around the house but never used it much until I heard it was an anti inflamitory.(for my under-the-skin acne) I have used a couple different brands (some even organic) and this is my favorite. There are sample sizes for one dollar! This gel is plain and simple, which is why I like it. The other brands would dry REALLY sticky, smell kinda funny (even though they were fragrance free), or they would leave a residue on my face. This brand specifically has never left my skin feeling that way and doesn't seem to have any smell to it. What I have found works best for me is mixing it with my night cream; it takes away any tackiness that people mention and makes the cream an awesome consistancy. It also sooths the skin after tanning shaving or waxing, treats burns, and can be mixed into lotions or shower gels. All in all you should be able to find some sort of use for it if you don't like it on your face like I do! Dollar well spent.
Primer/ Corrector -Unlisted Brand - Monistat - Chafing Relief Powder-Gel
sgilber 3/26/2012 6:14:00 AM
I am on my second tube of this and honestly it is the only primer I have ever liked. I have used drug store to high end trying to find a primer that did... well anything. The primer i ended up sticking with before this was basically a lotion and, after using this, I really don't think it did anything at all. This gel is very effective as a primer and the name is quite descriptive; it is actually a gel consistency that turns to a powdery soft substance when applied. The thing that I love most is that it does not feel like it is sitting on my skin, nor does it sink in and completely dissolve. This leaves the skin feeling so silky smooth and makes applying foundation super easy! As other reviewers stated, I too feel like I use less foundation when applied on top of this gel.This product is originally made to protect skin, and I think this is what makes it work so well as a base under makeup. Even alone it gives my skin a soft satin look! I have somewhat sensitive, acne prone skin and have not had any adverse reactions after using this on top of my moisturizer. A few tips: use sparingly, make sure any other face products have dried, let it set for 5 minutes or so, and be careful when squeezing the tube or you will end up with waaay too much product and waste it.
Makeup Brushes -Real Techniques by Samantha Chapman - Powder Brush
sgilber 3/26/2012 5:30:00 AM
Prior to this I was using the Eco tools fluffy powder brush, and I liked it but it was not quite dense enough. I saw this in Ulta a few months ago and had to have it. Affordable, effective, doesn't shed and it's oh so soft! This brush is very large, dense and it sets my foundation flawlessly with ease! I also feel it distributes powder more even than any other large powder brush I have owned. I would only repurchase if I lost it because this brush will last.
WHY THIS PRODUCT?: I picked up this foundation about 2 weeks ago as I was looking for something that would give me a brighter finish WITHOUT glitter. I would also prefer it not to have a sunscreen in the formulation because I use a lotion with a physical spf in it already. This does have an spf of 17 (Random?!) and it is a chemical spf as well; but I have heard such good things about this product that I had to try it regardless. It was expensive for the drug store but not compared to similar quality foundations elsewhere. I rarely wear foundation but when I do I like it to look somewhat natural and improve my complexion effortlessly. This foundation is it so far! I have not been using this every day but the few times I did, I was impressed. APPLICATION: The foundation is a nice creamy consistency with light to medium coverage and a satin finish. I am sure it can be built up to full coverage, but that is not typically how I apply my foundation. The foundation is not drying but not overly moisturizing either, very balanced. It blends easily, but does have a hint of a chemical smell. This smell is not strong and dissipates quickly unlike many foundations I have tried in the past. DOES IT WORK? : I wore it for night out and a day at the dog park\running errands and it performed well on both occasions. It does not settle into pores or fine lines. There was minimal transfer (only if I scratched my nose) and my face still looked nice by the end of the day. I do use a primer and set lightly with a matte powder. TO SUM IT UP: I am fair skinned with neutral-yellow undertones and am in the lightest shade but I was a little worried it would be too dark or pink. There are not a lot of choices as far as color selection and the packaging is a fail, although I really don't mind it much. I clean it with an anti-bacterial spray and use the brush attachment to dab the product around my face before blending. The foundation is great overall and it gives me the lively finish I wanted, not dewy really but silky and healthy. I only gave it a 4 because I have not used it for very long but I can see it being my go to foundation for a long time. MY SKIN I have moderate acne with combo\sensitive skin and this has not bothered me at all.In fact I like using it for blemishes because it covers them nicely and doesn't seem to make them worse at all. I don't buy into the lifting\anti-aging hype but it is SMOOTH on the skin! :) UPDATE: I continue to use this and find that if I apply it with a wet brush or beauty blender it lasts and won't transfer.
This is my favorite cream. First off the texture is absolutely perfect, not too heavy but thicker than an average lotion It also has quality ingredients proven to moisturize effectively and it is fairly inexpensive compared to higher end creams with similar ingredients. I also love that it is fragrance free, I wear perfume to smell good and feel that not EVERYTHING you use needs to have a fragrance added to it. But I digress... I sometimes use this on my body when get I out of the shower but my favorite way to use this is on my face at night. It leaves my skin feeling so calm and nourished, it is hard to explain but it feels amazing. I use the smallest dot on each cheek and one on my forehead. With another dab of the cream on my hand I gently blend it all in an upward motion starting on my neck. If I use too much I find that I am oily in the morning, so beware of that. A little goes a long way; I have had mine for 2 months now, use it daily, and it hardly has any of the product missing. The packaging is difficult and not the most sanitary. I might try what the reviewer said below with the foot cream pump. For now I turn the container over, tap it a couple times, then set it down. After this there is usually a little bit of product in the lid which I then remove with clean hands. I figure it is better than dipping my hand into the container every time. This product would be good for any skin type in my opinion, only by adjusting how you use it. If you have very oily skin I would not use it every night... maybe just after exfoliating or once a week as a treatment. Play around with it, use it sparingly to start, and see what works best for you!
Cleansers -L'Oreal - Go 360 Clean Deep Facial Cleanser for Sensitive Skin
sgilber 3/25/2012 10:52:00 PM
I was on the hunt for a basic inexpensive cleanser for quite a long time.I had been researching the best products for my skin and found that I needed to adjust my routine to really be taking care of my face. My requirements for an every day cleanser are that it is fragrance free, it is without ANY exfoliating properties (physical or chemical), it is formulated without menthol, lavender and other irritating botanical oils etc., and that it works without irritating my somewhat sensitive skin. This proved to be a very difficult task. I tried using several well known gentle cleansers that had fantastic reviews but they seemed to either not clean my skin well, or they were too harsh and left my certain areas of my face irritated and dry. I saw a review of this product on Youtube and decided to give it a try. Five bucks at Walgreen's... PERFECT! I have been using this as my daily cleanser for two weeks and I love it more and more with each use. The appearance of my skin has improved (less redness and reduced breakouts) and it cleans thoroughly while leaving my skin feeling soft and moisturized. It only takes the smallest amount of the gel-like cleanser for my entire face. The amount of product you get for the price is a steal :) I have used it to remove makeup (liquid foundation, blush, bronzer, powder) a couple times and it removes everything in one quick wash! Although I do use an eye makeup remover for heavy eyeliner and mascara first. I tried a toner on a cotton pad after, just to be sure, and there was absolutely no makeup or residue left over like there usually is. SCORE! The scrubber it comes with is also gentle yet very effective. This is the only version of the line that I will use as the three other versions had menthol and fragrance. I think this one would work for every skin type except EXTREMELY oily but even then it would be worth a shot, ya never know!