I have been using the SensEpil for a year. I wanted to be sure that I would be writing a fair review, so I waited a year before officially reviewing this. I am Asian, NC20-25, with somewhat thick dark hair, so I am "ideal" according to their Fitzpatrick Skin Tone Classification Scale and such. And I have to say, this works! I use it mainly on my underarm and bikini area. I am extremely close to being hair-free in both areas. I used it only my legs a couple times, but I didn't have the patience for that, so I didn't continue. I only had to change my cartridge once so far. On average, I use the SensEpil every 3-4 weeks. I also used it on my upper lip area twice and I already see significant reduction. I am so impressed by this, it really yields professional results at a fraction of the price! The size of the window of the lamp is pretty good, it's not too small, so the task is not overly tedious. However, this is something you have to be patient with in order to see results. Frankly, I never even touched the instructional CD it came with. I only skimmed through the instruction booklet which was sufficient for me. The procedure goes like this: shave the designated area, zap the area with SensEpil. After zapping an area, the hair will grow back, BUT DON'T PANIC, some of the hair that grew back will FALL OFF in about 2 weeks. That's why the instruction specifically says wait at least 2 weeks before next session! Since I have a fair tolerance of pain, I started at level 5 on my first session. I never tried any of the lower levels, I feel that since I only get 750 zaps out of one cartridge anyways, might as well use it to its full potential. To me, the feeling is not painful, and very much bearable. The light is a bit bright, so I usually look away when I click the button and look back after the light flashes. Sometimes I also smell burnt hair, but that doesn't bother me too much as long as it works. One thing I'm sort of bummed about is that I bought this without any promotion. I bought the system from Sephora for $499 + 9.75% California sale tax... The price was a bit steep for a student like me. Right now Sephora offers the system and 1 additional cartridge for the same price I paid :(. Nonetheless, it's still much cheaper than hair removal done by a professional. Ultimately, I'd have to say, yes I love my SensEpil, it works very well for me, BUT I would not purchase this again. If I had known about the VISS system before I purchased my SensEpil, I would've bought the VISS. It is cheaper than the SensEpil. The VISS system is $545 and the cartridges are $75, but the cartridge can last up to 4000 flashes; the treatment area is also larger with the VISS, which allows a faster process, so it's a lot more bang for the buck. But if the VISS is not easily available to you, SensEpil is great too. They use the same principle and serve the same function, but at different costs.
WOW. This has officially replaced my am moisturizer and my Shiseido sunblock, making my morning routine simpler. I have combination skin and it works really well for me, but it might be slightly too heavy for oily skin. This is moisturizing, but not greasy (unless I use too much). I only need about 1/2 to 3/4 pump of product for my entire face. It works extremely well as a sunblock, I have not gotten a sunburn since I've been using, it's important to note that I burn very easily. I love that it is all physical sunblock ingredients and the product is all natural. It contains titanium dioxide 9.5% and zinc oxide 6%. It spreads easily on my face and it doesn't give me an unnatural white cast. This sunblock works well under makeupIt smells somewhat like berries (maybe it's just me). I've only started using this a week ago, if anything changes, I'll update. But, so far, this is the best sun protection/moisturizer I've ever used!
Moisturizers -Murad - hydro dynamic ultimate moisturizer
w04hh 4/9/2011 4:53:00 AM
My skin is mostly combination, but not dry. Perhaps that is why this moisturizer just sat on top of my skin and refused to sink in. When I use this as a pm moisturizer, I always wake up to an oil-slicked face which is not the norm for other moisturizers. I would imagine this moisturizer working fairly well for dryer skinned gals, but it was not for me. After using it for a month in the winter, I had clogged pores on my forehead and cheeks. This is definitely not a light-weight moisturizer, it has a very whipped texture (even when I flip the container upside -down, the moisturizer doesn't budge and is completely unaffected by gravity). I still have a good amount of product left which I now use as an eye cream and it serves fairly well for this purpose. It keeps the area around my eye adequately hydrated. The container is not very travel friendly, the plastic tub is comparatively huge for 1.7oz of product. Even though the packaging is in a tub, it comes with a spatula for sanitary reasons. Bottom line is, this would be a good moisturizer for dry, and more matured skin as it does have anti-aging benefits.
This is a wonderful product! I've never had a cleansing oil that emulsified as well as this one. When was using Shu Uemura, Shiseido, and DHC cleansing oil, I had to use an additional facial cleanser to rinse off the oily residue. But for Clean Energy, I can completely skip that step. It leaves my skin feeling thoroughly clean, but not stripped of natural lipids. Also, another great thing about it is that it is NOT mineral oil based (Shu Uemura and Shiseido cleansing oils are all mineral oil based). This cleansing oil is natural and effective, what more can I ask for? And, it smells refreshing without artificial fragrance! I use this cleansing oil on the days I wear a water-resistant sunscreen or foundation. I get less blackheads and my pores are cleaner and smaller. Because the viscosity is just right for a cleansing oil, not too runny not too thick, I only have to use about 1 pump for my entire face (Maybe an additional 1/2 pump when I am wearing heavy eye makeup). This bottle last me for months. It doesn't actually come with a pump (which is the only disadvantage of this product), but the pump was only $1 at the origins counter, so it was reasonable.
This flat iron is well worth the money. It is durable and it minimizes damage to hair. While the GHD and the CHI yield flat lifeless hair, the T3 gives me natural-looking, soft, healthy hair. All my friends who had used my T3 fell in love with the results it gave. Not only does this flat iron yield extremely good results, the design of the iron itself is also very cute. I have fine, chemically treated hair and I use this at 300F. I like how the temperature is adjustable for the T3, unlike the CHI or the GHD. Also, the "floating" plates on this iron ensure that my hair is never pulled or snagged. The flat iron runs through my hair extremely smoothly. And I usually only need to pass through a certain portion of my hair once, and never more than twice for my hair. But the heat mat it comes with is kind of useless, I would much rather have a traveling pouch.
Foundations -Make Up For Ever - HD High Definition Foundation
w04hh 3/30/2011 3:00:00 AM
I like the way it looks when first applied, but I absolutely hate the way it feels on my skin. I was really looking forward to trying this foundation because it got such great reviews on Sephora. While it is a full coverage foundation, my skin still looked relative natural (a bit on the matte side). But the way it feels is a totally different story. It feels like a heavy mask that weighed my skin down. It's like I can feel like there is something on my face. I'm a NC20-25, neutral undertones, and 118 is a decent, but not perfect match. The staying power isn't so great either. When I was using, I was dying to wash my face at midday.
Highlighters -Bobbi Brown - Shimmer Brick Compact Copper Diamond
w04hh 3/30/2011 2:45:00 AM
This is my favorite shimmer brick (I have Bronze and Apricot as well). Unfortunately, it is no longer available as it was part of the holiday line in 2008. I would say the stripes blend into more of a golden than a coppery color. It adds an amazing sheen to my cheek bone, yet it doesn't look oily. I also use the 2 darker colors to contour my eye and the light colors as eyeshadow to highlight. The case of this particular shimmer brick is different from the tradition plastic black case. This case is gold in color and the top is composed of plastic and leather-like material. Many people use a duo fibre brush to apply the shimmer bricks, but from my experience, Bobbi Brown's Face Blender brush does a much better job in depositing the shimmers. Even though it is a limited edition item and I wouldn't be able to repurchase when I hit the pan, I don't see myself running out anytime soon. There is enough product in the shimmer bricks to last for years.
Loose Powders -T. LeClerc - Loose Powder in Lilium
w04hh 3/30/2011 2:33:00 AM
A wonderful loose powder for probably all skin types except dry skin. It sets my makeup well. Sometimes, I only use concealer and I always set my concealer with this. I prefer to use a duo fibre brush or a fan brush to dust this on lightly. It doesn't really add any color to my skin. I realized that my skin looks flawless in photographs when I use this to set my makeup. Somehow the powder diffuses light in such a manner that hides my pores. The container is lovely to look at, I love the vintage feel of the tin. However, as others have mentioned it is a messy packaging. Personally, I haven't experience any serious spillage, I don't travel with this powder (I just use a pressed powder when I travel). But I can see how it can be a problem for a person who travels a lot. Perhaps it might be helpful to scoop some product out into a sifter jar for traveling.
Liquid -Shu Uemura - Face Architect Smoothing Fluid Foundation
w04hh 3/30/2011 2:22:00 AM
This is an extremely natural looking, medium coverage foundation. It covers discolorations and pores, but not completely. It doesn't feel heavy on my skin. I don't use this everyday, so I can't judge its long term effect on my skin. I am a NC20-25, somewhat neutral undertone and I bought 564. It blends well into my skin when I first applied it. However as the day goes on, it oxidizes horribly on my skin. It turns 1-2 shade darker and more orange by the end of the day. I've tried using 2 different primers, and setting it with 3 different powders, all to no avail. It's a shame that this foundation oxidizes on me, or else it would be my favorite liquid foundation.
How do they expect you to draw a fine line with a brush this thick?! This is the worst brush I've ever come across in an liquid eyeliner. It is hard to control and it took me about 4 tries to actually obtain a smooth line. Also, this takes a lifetime to dry! I had to wait at least 25 seconds for this to dry after I applied the line. If I open my eye or blink too early, then my entire line is messed up. The only thing praise worthy about this (thus preventing me from giving it a horrible rating) is its staying power. This is has the longest staying power among all the liquid eyeliner I've tried (Urban Decay, Lancome, Shiseido Maquillage, Stila, etc.) It stays on until I shower through hot humid conditions.
Moisturizers -Clinique - Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel
w04hh 3/30/2011 12:40:00 AM
I really wanted this to work because it was so cheap comparing to other department store brands. But I was disappointed because this moisturizer did nothing but sit on top of my skin most of the day. It didn't moisturizer and the texture of my skin became worse after using this. Yes, this moisturizer was "dramatically different" from others in a way that it doesn't absorb at all! Some reviewers claim that this made their skin felt soft and smooth - it is only because of the large amount of dimethicone (basically silicone) in the product. Dimethicone can act as a barrier on your skin to help it retain water, but it's a synthetic emollient and not something I want to put on my skin in twice a day.
This totally wrecked my face. My face was clear with occasional blemishes before I used this. After a month of using this toner, I was breaking out all over my face. The alcohol content was horrendously high in this product. It dried out my skin and made my skin felt extremely tight. The lady at the Clinique counter evaluated my skin incorrectly. This clarifying lotion is for oily combo skin when I have sensitive dry combo skin. After this toner, I was terrified of going near Clinique toners (most have high alcohol content).
Makeup Brushes -Giorgio Armani - Large Eye Contour Brush
w04hh 3/30/2011 12:23:00 AM
This is my new favorite brush! It contours the crease of my eye so well. It deposits the perfect amount of pigment onto my eye. The applied eyeshadow is smooth and flawless. It blends out hard edges like a breeze. This has completely win my heart from the MAC 224. This is softer and more dense than the 224. If I have to choose one eye brush for the rest of my life, it would be either this brush, or the Shu Uemura Natural Brush 10.
Makeup Brushes -MAC - 224 Tapered Blending (Windshield Wiper) Brush
w04hh 3/30/2011 12:18:00 AM
This is so multi-functional! I use it to apply eyeshadow to the crease, blend concealer, contour my nose, etc. Not only does it work for many purposes, it performs well in all the tasks listed above. This used to be my favorite brush for applying eyeshadow to the crease, but I recently found the Armani Large Eye Contour Brush to be even better than the 224. But for its price range, the 224 is the best for its functionality and efficiency.
I actually have never found a concealer that matched my skin as well as this one. I'm a NC20-25, but with somewhat neutral undertones and I had this concealer in NW20. The Studio Sculpt concealer color range is a bit off from the usual MAC color range. NW20 in Studio Sculpt is darker than NW20 in Studio Finish. I like the way Studio Sculpt applies, it is more "watery" than the Studio Finish, and hence less opaque as well. But besides the way it applies and how well it matched my skin, I cannot say one other good thing about it. It clogged my pores, it turns oily, the staying power is not great, and it just doesn't look natural enough on my skin. Definitely will not repurchase.