This is so good I think I will buy more than 1 just in case my dog steals one, my house catches on fire or the company discontinues it. I can usually find something wrong w/anything, I am soooo picky but this is perfect for me. If I sweep my brush from the pink stripe towards the lighter stripes I can highlight. If I sweep towards the darker stripe I can do my apples and get the most perfect color. It isn't pink, mauve, brown, dirty, orangey, rusty-- just perfect healthy glowing warmth. It doesn't settle into my lines and isn't glittery. I have a heavy hand and it doesn't look overly done and doesn't need overly blended out. I think it is fairly priced but as far as the packaging is concerned the screw off lid isn't the best. Flip top would be more convenient (something like BB's blushes would be really nice). What would be clutch would be if Smashbox made something where you could buy as many as you wanted and you could pop them into a big palette and have them in one place like LM or BB or Chante. I don't mind that it doesn't have a mirror since it is so long wearing I really don't feel the need to touch up. For this reason it doesn't really bother me that there is no brush included. On the upside if you have more than one of these it is nice that the top is clear so you can see which one you are reaching for.
Seldom do I give up on a lip gloss after 1 application but this one was tossed into the trash the 1st day. It tastes so bad I had a constant sneer on my lips the whole time I was wearing it. The smell offended me. I gave it 1 lippie for the beautiful color, cute name and nice packaging. If your olfactory nerves are shot then give this one a whirl and you'll look hot.
I used this on the highest part of my cheekbones and on my brow bone. I really think this is neutral enough anyone skin tone could use it. NARS has another multiple similar that is more pink toned that I think is more limiting so this to me is the most versatile product between the two if you are trying to decide. Another pro is that this stays on a long time--until you wash it off. And your cleanser better not be terribly mild because if you are heavy handed with your application it is really in there and takes some working to remove. The reason I said I would not buy this again it magnifies imperfections on my face. I have nice enough skin to not wear foundation but yet when I apply this it seems to magnify any texture issues I would not have noticed otherwise. Maybe if someone used a primer then foundation this would not be an issue but sorry-I'm not that girl.
I'm not sure why this is in the blush category. There really isn't anyone pale enough that this would show up on as a blush so this is a highlighter in my book. I used it over my blush and on my highest part of my cheekbones. I tend to be very heavy handed with blush and that can be a big mistake if using NARS blushes since they are very pigmented. So the solution was to brush a little of this on top of the blush to soften the look. The only reason I said I would not buy this again is that while it performs in the way I want it to, has great staying power and is a quality product; it settles into every wrinkle I have and magnifies it. I think it ages me at least 5 years. Unfortunate for me because it makes me glow without the sparkly disco-ball look. If you have no fine lines or crows feet go for it-- you won't be sorry. It would compliment most any skintone.
Lotions/ Creams -Ren - Citrus Limonum prebiotic hand cream
suhsoonok 2/7/2010 10:41:00 PM
I like this a lot. The packaging like all Ren products is top notch. I feel they put a lot of thought into packaging. Most of the Ren skincare is in a hand held pump and some of the pumps you can see a baggie within that pump and see the product deplete. This hand cream is just in a pump dispenser that sits on the counter top not a pump you hold in your hand like the other products they make. This makes it very convenient/user friendly IMHO. The cream has a great slightly whippy non-greasy consistency about what you would expect from Ren. It absorbs very quickly into your skin which is nice so you can get on with whatever. Nothing is more annoying than not being able to open doors and being all greased up after moisturizing. That being said keep in mind that while there isn't much residue the downside is that this is a light hand cream that should be used after each hand washing and probably something different at night. It isn't a deep moisturizer whatsoever. Any thicker and it probably would have to be packaged in an irritating squeezy tube?
Moisturizers -Christian Dior - Capture R60-80 Ultimate Wrinkle Creme
suhsoonok 2/7/2010 9:30:00 PM
EDIT: I've knocked off some lippies and given up. I know this seems premature but here is the reason. The company states that after a month wrinkles should be diminishing. I have looked carefully at my wrinkled area in the big scary mirror downstairs with very good lighting not my forgiving mirror that I usually use. My face looks exactly the same pre-Capture creme. This is cack. I'm returning it while I still have the chance. I only just started using this about a week ago. I will update later if something changes because sometimes results do shift some. My friend uses Chantecaille Bio-dynamic and because of my allergies and the cost I chose to pass on that one but was shopping around for something that would perform similarly as the skin on my face isn't getting any younger. This has great consistency. I have tried the Creme Ancienne and found it odd to warm it between your fingers before using it. I never knew if I was using the correct amount or not. My skin was so sensitive it ended up reacting to it anyway. This one you are supposed to warm similarly but I don't. While dense it isn't horribly thick/waxy so I didn't see the need. I use this only in the problem areas of my face so far but if all goes well I'm probably going to start putting it everywhere. At first I did notice some itching. There was no rash and it wasn't very intense. I don't know if there was a lot of cell turnover or what the heck was going on but after a few days it stopped so I didn't discontinue use. So far what has happened is my lines have disappeared. Yes, disappeared in a week. Keep in mind that my lines were fine and not deep. This product does claim to perform in this manner after 3months. While the biodynamic my friend uses creates facial contractions @ $295 for 1.7 oz it stopped working the minute she stopped using it and her wrinkles came back. This is $100 for 1.7 oz and it builds collagen up from bellow the skins surface. I am assuming the collagen would take awhile to deplete after you stopped using it and so the wrinkles wouldn't come back immediately. With a lot of "miracle" creams I have tried by the next application time my lines have reappeared. Well, I guess I won't be able to tell you for sure because I'm not going to stop using this anytime soon.
Moisturizers -Ren - Vita-Mineral Radiant Day Cream
suhsoonok 2/7/2010 9:14:00 PM
EDIT: I can't use this on my face. After awhile I started getting pimples. Not the innocent ones. Painful mountains underneath the skin. My t-zone became an oil field no matter how little I used. I don't feel like this should happen given we are in a dry climate in the dead of winter. This product is so free of chemicals it does nothing to regulate sebum so unfortunately I knocked off some lippies. I'll recycle more to improve my karma. I really like this. It is reasonably priced. The packaging is awesome. You can't get better packaging for a germaphob. The product has great whipped consistency with a lot of cushion without being greasy. It absorbs quickly and does not leave my face shiny. For me it is the perfect amount of moisture. I have very sensitive combo skin. I use a rosewater toner and serum and while my face is still damp apply this. If your skin is extremely dry you probably will need something heavier in dry months but this would be perfect the rest of the year. If you are oilier than me this could possibly work sans the serum and rosewater in the dry months or as a neck cream. I think if used correctly this would be workable for just about anyone. For the price and what I've found out there this is a very high quality product.
This is a very nice mask. My friend warned me against it. Her skin is less sensitive than mine and she went to buy it and the store she shops at told her not to buy it and suggested a Murad mask instead. She was very disappointed with the results. Although very leery of this mask since my skin is so sensitive I tried it anyway. Nothing bad happened. I figured if anything horrible happened I would just follow it with the Jasmine and Lily mask since that cures all anyway. I left on for 7 minutes. This is a mild to moderate non manual peel. It doesn't smell good or bad to me either way. I can see where some might possibly be offended by the odor but I wasn't bothered as the smell did not seem synthetic. The only suggestion I would have is when I removed this the first time I did so stupidly with a dry cotton pad (didn't want product to run into my eyes) and was horrified with the crud that came off my face. It was a mixture of dead crap off my face and dried up product. Make sure you sponge it off damply or just don't look~unless you are one of those who feels satisfied with filling up the clear vacuum canister while cleaning your carpet? So...the reason I would not buy again is probably the results I gained from using this one. To me it was more of a "feel good" product but didn't really deliver even in that area. The smell wasn't really relaxing enough to really wind me down. The claim of it peeling to the point where the lines are diminished~nada... So if you want your lines diminished I would probably spend that much money looking for a gentle retinol product. If you want a feel good product I think there are a lot on the market for less than $82.
Cleansers -Chantecaille - Rice and Geranium Foaming Cleanser
suhsoonok 1/23/2010 9:28:00 PM
I think this is ok MAYBE for the right consumer. I love almost all Chantecaille but this was not suitable for me. I did not buy it. It came as part of a set. I will not buy it myself. Please do not let this review scare you away. This product like a lot of Chantecaille (but not all) does contain gluten. I have Celiac's so stupidly I wanted to try it sooo bad. So much Chante is so mild I thought maybe I could get away w/it. Not so. My face was on fire the first day. Then I developed blisters and then as if that wasn't fun enough Celiac symptoms I will not go into since this is MUA not Web MD. TMI but my point is-my problem but probably not going to be for most of the consumers. Back to the cleanser... It is foamy and gets your face very clean. I probably would not suggest this for someone with supersensitive skin or someone who is dry or wants a cleanser during the cold season or lives in a dry climate. You could however use it as a weekly exfoliant but I don't know why you would do that when Chantecaille has products so much more effective. The packaging seems ok. Smell is fine, non-offensive but not spectacular like the signature rose de mai scent that has me so hot for this brand. IMHO I think that this is actually a perfect cleanser for a man. The skin is not as sensitive and seems more robust.
I'm not sure about this. That being said, it is probably the best exfoliant I a have tried. That isn't saying much being that sandy exfol. aren't my cup of tea. I wish it was in a pump. In the shower it gets H2O in the cap. If you are @ the sinkside you get it all over the container if you reach for more. You cannot visibly see how much is left. So 1 lippie off for packaging. As the other reviewers have pointed out you can use this in diff manners. I have used this -- all methods and each and every on has been irritating. I do not know if it is from the texture or the citrus fruit acids. Used full strength the burning takes my breath away-not in a good way. So why would I buy it again? I haven't found anything better. Also...I had used it awhile (diluted version daily about 2 wks) and ran out to buy a blush that was about to be pulled off the shelves to be discontinued. The SA said my skin was flawless. I did not have a stitch of makeup on. I had not bought anything in the longest time EXCEPT for this so that was the only explaination. I didn't make it in time for the blush, the SA knew I wasn't going to buy anything, and I know this SA, she isn't that nice. It was def. the darn scrub.
Misc Beauty Tools -Cle de Peau - Le Coton-cotton pads
suhsoonok 1/23/2010 7:12:00 PM
This came w/a GWP thru NM. I bought full size after agonizing a great while. It doesn't cost THAT much. But it is considerably more than your average cotton pad from Target. It's the. Stay the heck away from these if you don't want to get hooked. Don't even touch them with your finger. Don't even look at them. Every stinkin' one has the CDP emboss on it. Comes in a box you can keep out and still looks fine. I don't like my cotton pads from Target anymore. Boo.
Scrubs -Fresh - Sugar Face Polish with Strawberries
suhsoonok 1/23/2010 6:20:00 PM
Smells great. Not irritating like a lot of manual exf. Very moisturizing. Reminds me a lot of one by Philosophy (Greatest Love maybe?) but smells better. I have a hard time using this on my face because it leaves it a little slick and sometimes I get a few breakouts. I will continue to buy because this is my fav for anyplace rough such as hands, feet and esp. lips.
Packaging-ok. Would be nice to be able to have the option to pour OR mist like FRESH's Rose Marigold. Price ok for what you get. I bought 3 diff ones. SA was insistent I needed all of them but no way. Not when I haven't even tried 1. I'm still a moron cause I bought 3. Hammaleis. The SA was so persistent about this one and apparently I have a problem 1. w/ enlarged pores and 2. w/saying no. It is pretty irritating/drying. Don't let that stop you though. My skin is pretty much irritated by everything and witch hazel can tend to be slightly astringent. That is the general point. I bought it in unscented. Doesn't do much of anything. I asked SA what the function was and she was shocked by my utter ignorance. Because your skin needs this precious sea water!!! OK THEN! I do think this would be nice to use to wet your eyeliner brush for dry shadow application since tap H2O will have chemicals and what not in it thus contaminating your product with who knows what. I finally bought this in Chamomile. If I were to purchase again I would say this would be the one. The smell is ok, non offensive. It is slightly moisturizing and calming. I do not like to use it on my face and leave it there or I get big pores, congestion and break out. Nothing earth-shattering but very noticeable. I do like to soak a cotton pad w/it and use it to remove my clay mask before a shower. It is also ok to put on my body if I want my body lotion to spread better. Worth a try but don't be an idiot like me and go all in unless you really are a nut for toners.
Skincare - Face -Juice Beauty - Green Apple Nutrient Eye Cream
suhsoonok 1/23/2010 4:02:00 PM
Smells good. Overpriced for effectiveness. Packaging is hygenic but the pump was too long and I had to take it out and cut the bottom off for it to function. Kind of itchy. Doesn't do much of anything for wrinkles puffiness or dark circles. Smells good. Expensive to buy for just that reason...
Masks -Chantecaille - Detox Clay Mask with Rosemary and Honey
suhsoonok 1/23/2010 3:58:00 PM
This is ? for a clay mask depending on what you want it to do. It really did not do anything for my pores as far as sucking out the gunk like some of the reviewers said. It did shrink the size somewhat. It has an offensive smell. Not chemical. Heavily of rosemary. I suggest if you do not like rosemary do not purchase this. It does not dry and make your skin dry itchy and irritated like a lot of clay masks do. There is one by Caudalie for 1/2 the price, though and it will not stain your washcloth. It performs just as well and you can spot treat blemishes and sleep with it on overnight. This mask is so black it is blue. I look like an idiot and if I snarl just right in the mirror I look like I'm going off to war. It does stain your EVERYTHING and so I use some sort of toner ( takes a lot and seems wasteful) and large cotton pads to remove this. Not worth ruining my washcloths and having to scrub my basin. I will not buy this one again. Not because of the mess but because for the $$$ I believe I should save it for H.G. must have's or something that could be.