The brush is too big and you get too much product on it so application ends up being quite a messy affair. It does give some added volume/length (so they got the FULL part right) but it clumps so much (nay on the SOFT part). I really don't think it deserves the uber high rating. My fave drugstore mascara is still Cover Girl Lash Exact.
Powder -Everyday Minerals - Pressed Powder in Fairly Light Golden
valeriana 9/1/2008 5:05:00 PM
This wasn't the right shade for me. This is the 2nd EM foundation that I've tried and I've been disappointed both times. The other one was an Original Glo loose foundation. Both were too light, too shimmery, chalky (even with moisturizer) and highlighted fine lines/blemishes. The coverage on the pressed powder is good but even so, I would only recommend it to people with good skin. I'm just so frustrated. I've been searching for an HG pressed/compact powder foundation and still haven't found one! I don't know if I should try EM a 3rd time (maybe hope to find the right shade?) or if I should just move on. SIGH...
Styling Products -Unlisted Brand - Zero Frizz - Corrective Hair Serum
valeriana 9/1/2008 4:43:00 PM
This really does what it promises. It corrects and eliminates frizz. I tried using it for straightening purposes (with a flat iron) and it works pretty well for that too unless there's a lot of humidity, in which case, this cannot keep your hair straight. But I can't fault it for that because that's really not what this was made for. When I'm leaving the house in a hurry and have no time to use any heat (dryer or flat iron), I just spread this on and say bye-bye to the frizzies. I get smooth, silky (albeit wavy) hair in an instant! My hair feels stronger and just all around healthier even after I've washed it. Just remember to apply with a light hand. As with any hair product, you could easily end up with greasy hair if you glop too much of this on. I get compliments when I use this. People are amazed and ask me what I did to make my hair look so good. I mean, normally my hair is just horrible (seriously). Hearing people say, "Your hair looks great!" is a HUGE deal for me. LUVS IT!
Treatments -Avon - Advance Techniques Smooth and Shine Anti-Frizz Capsules
valeriana 9/1/2008 4:26:00 PM
As compared with L' Oreal Elseve Anti-Frizz Serum and Zero Frizz Corrective Serum, this worked best for me. All three gave almost same results when used for straightening with a flat iron - glossy, shiny, straight hair. The difference is, with Avon you get a more natural and smoother effect. I get the most compliments with this one. Even more importantly, this has been the only one who could keep my hair straight even through extreme heat and humidity (I live in a tropical country). Truly amazing! Now for it's big downfall. It comes in capsule form. The capsules are really small and opening them (twist off end) usually ends up in a bit of a mess. If you're not careful, you could easily end up with more of the stuff on your dresser/vanity than on your hair. A jar (with 18 capsules) can be bought for $5-7 on eBay. Seems cheap at first but actually, it can add up pretty quickly. Even with short, jaw-length hair, I have to use 2-3 capsules everytime. If you use it everyday, you'd have to buy a lot/often. So I've decided not to buy this again. There's so many products out there, I'm sure there's one just as good or better than this one that comes in better packaging and at a better price/value. Still, if Avon ever thinks of putting this in a bottle, I'd be the first one falling in line to buy it!
Hair Styling Tools -Unlisted Brand - Andis Ceramic Flat Iron
valeriana 9/1/2008 4:03:00 PM
When I was at the US last year, I bought this iron at Wal-Mart. The fact that it had great ratings at MUA and could be had for a super low price was just too hard for me to resist. At first, it worked great. If I spent enough time and used the right products (the best that I'd tried so far is Avon Advanced Techniques Anti-Frizz Capsules), I got really smooth, silky, no-frizz, natural-looking (not straw-like), straight hair that stayed that way until I washed it. The problems started when I went back home to the Philippines. It just hasn't worked for me since then. I never got the same results again. No matter what product I use or how long I spend on my hair, it doesn't stay straight anymore. It'll frizz/wave/flip out within 10 mins.! I don't know if it's because the Andis can't stand up to the extreme tropical climate (heat + humidity) here or if the plates have gotten worn out or what. Also, we use 220V here and the Andis runs on 110V so I've been using it with a voltage transformer. That might be another reason why it's not working as well as it used to. More than anything, this is a lesson in impulsive buying. I haven't been using the iron much since I came back to the Philippines because the few times that I've tried have been so disappointing. It might have been cheap but in the long run, I still didn't get my money's worth.
This is a pretty okay powder foundation. On the positive side, it has good texture and feel. It's light, like your skin can still breathe under it. It looks better as the day wears on and it starts too lose that "powdery" look. Still a little too powdery for me though, but not as much as other powder foundations I've tried. I'm not so into the ultra-matte look. This definitely keeps the shine at bay so those who are looking for matte finish powders might like this. The compact is really cute though and the price is great for the amount of product you get. Didn't work for me but I would not discourage anyone from trying it.
Blush -mark - Good Glowing Powder Blush -After Glow
valeriana 8/8/2007 1:52:00 PM
I bought this blush based on the "glowing" reviews here on MUA. Sadly, it's just not for me. The color is beautiful but it's overpowered by way too much glittery gold specks that just highlight flaws or lines (even the tiniest ones). There's barely any "blush" and too much "glow" going on. I still use it but only as a highlighter and very very sparingly. This would probably work better with people who have flawless complexions and very light skin tones. For reference, I am Asian with light-medium skin tone.
This eyeliner glides on smoothly and stays in place, doesn't smudge even through hours of use. I have it in Cosmic Brown which is the most natural brown I've ever seen (not reddish or purplish or almost black like other eyeliners I've tried). Applied with a light hand, it has a subtle eye-opening "barely there" effect that's just beautiful. I love it. Will buy again (and again) in a heartbeat! UPDATE: To my fellow Pinays, the review above is for the US version. I bought a local (AVON Philippines) version and it is COMPLETELY different. Do NOT buy the Philippines version even if it's really cheap because you won't be able to use it. It's that bad.
Leaves face feeling clean and fresh without being "stripped". It can't remove heavy makeup or sunscreen. For that, I use oil (I have a mix of Jojoba, Camellia, Rose Hip & Vitamin E oil) to "soften" or dissolve the makeup/sunscreen first, then I wash with Alpha Hydrox Foaming Face Wash. This works perfectly. It's unscented and feels very gentle. It doesn't even sting if it gets into your eyes. Doesn't leave a film (like Cetaphil). Love it!
THANK YOU MUA! Queen Helene's Mint Julep Masque really works. It got rid of my zits! YAY! I had a really bad breakout probably because my skin felt overloaded. I had recently adopted a skin care routine that was composed of like 10 different products after years of nothing but facial cleansers and the occasional mask, moisturizer or treatment. I developed really huge cystic acne unlike any I've ever had. Benzoyl Peroxide helped a little but new ones still kept popping up so I gave my skin a rest. I stopped everything else and started using only Queen Helene Mint Julep Masque (sometimes combining it with JASON Tea Tree Gel) to spot-treat the zits. Voila! I'm zit-free in no time. I'm starting my routine again but slowly this time, adding one product at a time but even if I get cosmetic acne again, I'm not worried because my Queen Helene Mint Julep Masque will save the day.
Skincare - Face -Dr. Denese - HydroShield Ultra Moisturizing Face Serum
valeriana 3/20/2007 6:26:00 PM
I bought this on the advice of Paula Begoun. She totally raved about this product. I was so hooked that I bought 2 bottles right away. I wish I had known then that she reviews her products based on the ingredients list alone and not on product testing. It's really expensive and you get such a small amount. I consoled myself with the thought that it would do great things for my skin. Sadly, it did not. This didn't do anything for me. I got more results from using a cheap and simple Vitamin E moisturizer than from this product. It goes on icky, sticky and thick (I think because it's mostly silicone). It does dry to a matte finish but only after a couple of minutes. I don't think it's very moisturizing either (despite its name). Oh well. I've learned my lesson. I'm sticking to MUA recommendations from now on!
Oh how I love this. Let me count the ways. It's totally refreshing. You can tell it has an itty bit of alcohol in it but it's probably in a very, very small amount because you don't even feel any tightness after using this. It's not irritating at all. It actually calms my skin. It doesn't break me out. It even helps heal pimples. It does well layered with other products. Most importantly, I think it does what it's supposed to. I've noticed my scars lightening and my skin becoming more even and brighter. It comes in a very big bottle (I got the blue one, for oily skin) which is going to last me forever but I will definitely repurchase when it finally does run out. I am in love with this! If you see it in your neighborhood Asian store, DON'T HESITATE TO GRAB ONE (or five). =) Hehe.
I use PC BHA liquid and the aspirin mask so I don't really need an aspirin toner but I had some toners lying around that I wasn't using anymore so I ground up some aspirin and mixed it up with the toner. I gave it to my husband and he's been using it for a couple weeks now and his skin has become so smooth and soft. He's really happy with it. =) And he's more willing to be a guinea pig for me now.
Super cheap way to give your skin a dose of BHA. You can mix in whatever you want, whatever your skin needs. I mix it with honey, Jason Naturals Tea Tree Soothing Gel, Burt's Bees French Clay, Silkia Camellia Oil and whatever natural ingredients I have on hand. Only problem is, you don't really know if your mix is at the right level of pH for the BHA to do its work. You just have to trust in the results. This gives me super smooth and soft skin everytime. Love this!
Causes break outs. Makes face like an oil slick. Sticky. Sits on face like grease. Major EW.