Moisturizers -Juice Beauty - Stem Cellular Repair Moisturizer
wysiwyg 9/15/2012 2:17:00 PM
I love this. I love the smell; I love the texture; I love that it sinks into my skin easily; I love that I can layer it with other moisturizers; I love that some odd aging wrinkles are softening/going away; I love that it makes my skin appear more luminous; I love that my foundation glides easily over it; I love the hygienic packaging (a pump dispenser on the jar). I have this feeling that I won't love that it'll be hard to tell when it's running out -- small sacrifice, all in all.
Styling Products -Aquage - BIOMEGA Behave Smoothing Elixir
wysiwyg 9/15/2012 2:12:00 PM
I'm surprised no one has reviewed this product, but I think AQUAGE products aren't easy to find (at least not near me); the BIOMEGA line is all the harder. My hair is layered, shoulder length, fine, plentiful, starting to go gray, getting odd and uneven texture as I age. It wants to be wavy everywhere but the front; it wants to fall flat and look frizzy (more like it has split ends, almost) in humidity, wind, early morning air, outside air generally. . . So, I always feel like I look terrible. I relied for years on hairspray to fight my many battles. Even my favorite products reviewed over the years let me down over time. I've got a closet full of products that are 90% unused, though I've tried to use them together, alone, on terribly wet hair, on more dry hair, on dry hair -- I comb through your reviews for tips on using the many products I've tried over the years. This product is amazing. It claims to smooth hair down but never make it flat - and it delivers. My hair actually has bounce, holds some shape, and doesn't do that odd frizz thing. I put between a nickel-size and quarter-size blob in my palm, rub my palms together to get product between my fingers, run it through wet hair, comb to distribute more, blow dry - and I'm done. It comes in a tube with a squeeze top (the kind with the hold in the middle), so it's easy to control the amount you dispense. If you struggle with fine, wavy hair that wants to fall flat if you look at it funny, consider tracking this down.
Mascara -NYX - Provocateur Mascara - Boudoir Collection
wysiwyg 3/25/2012 11:23:00 AM
I have to say that I'm pretty surprised that no one has reviewed this yet! I've given this 3 weeks and am STILL pleasantly surprised by this mascara. It's too soon to think I've hit a HG - it needs to get through a DC summer - but it's truly a keeper. I picked this up on a whim when I couldn't find "Propel My Eyes" to try -- also by NYX. I like the DollEye but have a heck of a time finding it; Propel My Eyes has been even more elusive. I tried Frou Frou and suffered lots of undereye smudging, and I've been on the hunt for a good, inexpensive mascara for XX years. This one works like a tubing mascara for me but provides better volume and separation. I confess that I prefer a more natural look, and some of the tubing mascaras look clunky and clumpy. It comes with two nestled brushes, and I start with the larger one on my upper lashes then finish with the smaller one on the upper and lower. I'm older and must use eye cream, so smudging is my No. 1 complaint about most mascaras. Not with Provocateur - not a smudge or flake. For removal, it acts like a tubing mascara -- a little water and pressure, and it's off. I usually use cleanser and remove this while I'm washing my face. It does come off in pieces, but don't think these are your lashes. I've stopped buying Clinique's Bottom Lash, because I no longer need it. I haven't really tried to go dramatic, so I'm not sure how it might build coat-to-coat. I haven't found it too wet or too dry. I hope you ladies try and like this -- otherwise it won't matter that it may be my HG!
I have a love/hate relationship with this product. I bought it months ago when it first came out and, in light of the positive things it does, have been experimenting with it ever since. I said I'd re-purchase, but I'm truly on the fence about that. So, for context -- I've got shoulder-length, layered, fine-medium, dishwater blond hair and lots of it. It's changing in odd ways -- it's been developing strong waves but only at the BACK OF MY HEAD; the top, front, and sides of my hair is straight to weakly wavy. It's bizarre. I've battled with slippery hair and hair that lays flat at the root all my life. The good - it definitely counteracts the flatness at the root, providing body/lift there regardless of the weather, including the dreaded humidity. The bad - although I've experimented with quantity (and too much leaves a gritty residue -- yuk - on your hair), it makes my hair tough to deal with. . . as in blowdrying it literally produces an odd, fuzzy brillo pad look. . . what you'd imagine Larry from the Three Stooges would look like if he stuck his finger in a socket. I'm trying to use it with other things - before, after, mixing - and have yet to find a good cocktail. I have managed to mitigate the brillo pad effect, but my hair seems to lack elasticity/flexibility with this stuff -- you know that helmut head you can get if you use too much hairspray? It's that firm -- not that hard, but that firm. I've weaned myself from hairspray for about a year now, but I'm not anxious to replace it with any helmut, no matter how wind-blowable it is. I'll update if I can find the right cocktail, but for this price, I'm thinking this is not the product for me. Tips -- too little will do nothing; too much will be gritty. If you look at Bumble's youtube videos, they use about a quarter on my length hair. I'd start between a dime and nickle and build from there. It's VERY STICKY - don't try to apply to dry hair; your hair needs to be wet. Emulsify it after putting your blob in your palm by rubbing your hands together. If you want lift at the root, be careful not to apply too much in one spot. I don't know what improvement Bumble's Prep might have in using this product -- they always use it first. I'm not willing to commit to purchasing two products indefinitely just to make this one work for me.
Sunscreen -Neutrogena - Age Shield Face- SPF 110 waterproof
wysiwyg 5/7/2011 9:13:00 AM
My skin is fair-medium, cool, and I'm on the backside of 45 :-( I should have paid more attention to sunscreen as a teenager (I had friends who sunbathed in babyoil alone, even cooking oil!, and used those aluminum reflectors; I wasn't THAT bad). I look much younger than I am but probably do have sun damage. So I was hoping this 110 SPF with helioplex would help prevent further damage with those age-accelerating UVA rays! It probably does, but I won't know -- every time I've tried using this (multiple times over the last three weeks), I end up looking sunburned. I think my skin is becoming sensitive as I age (the aging gods have all sorts of nasty tricks up their sleeves!). This makes me itch, too. I'm trying other products with good broadscreen UVA/UVB protection, and will post about those after I've given them a fair shake.
Treatments -Joico - k-pak deep penetrating reconstructor
wysiwyg 4/15/2011 5:24:00 PM
This product is AMAAAAZING! but you can overdo it. For reference -- my hair is 2A/B (wavy), normal porosity, fine/medium, plentiful, uncolored, past shoulders with long layers, in good condition, and getting wavier as I age. Grays are just starting to show up -- my new hairdresser says she saw maybe 3. My hair has too much slip (not much texture). I'm the "have trouble keeping a rubberband in that hair" girl. I'm a product junkie, always looking for products to resist my hair's nature of wanting to droop. It's not that I want big hair; I just don't want my hair laying flat at the root. I'm working myself away from silicones, parabens, sulfates - though this product does have parabens (see ingredients below) and trying to eliminate hairspray entirely from the regimen. I've been sampling any number of sulfate-free products and am pretty well devoted now to DevaCurl. So, the routine is to wash/co-wash, condition, K-Pak and wait, rinse, use a deep conditioner (Biolage Conditioning Balm) with extra attention on the ends of my hair. I can't tell you what a difference this makes! My hair is still really silky, but it is sooooo well-behaved. It requires minimal styling (drying) and no hairspray. And it stays. It stays wavy, it stays full. I encourage anyone, regardless of hair type (straight to very curly) to check out www.naturallycurly.com Those folks may or may not have your hair assets or challenges, but they know hair and gave me great insight to how to deal with mine - now that it's changing (?) A few words to the wise about this wonderful product. First, it's not a conditioner. Second, it's possible to overdo a good thing -- I think I spaced my last use (about 5 weeks ago) 4 days apart, and that left my hair a bit dry. I vowed not to repeat that mistake, put the tube in the back of a cabinet, and forgot about it! I couldn't figure out why I was having to fight again with my hair -- then, doh, remembered this. I think I need to be on an 10-day schedule with this. Bottom line: I'd encourage you to check out naturallycurly to explore your hair type then, if you think reconstruction might help you, try this! Ingredients: Water (Aqua) , Stearamidopropyl Dimethylamine , Mineral Oil (Paraffinum Liquidum) , Glycol Stearate , PEG-8 Distearate , Sodium Chloride , Ceteth-2 , Hydrolyzed Hair Keratin , Laurdimonium Hydroxypropyl Hydrolyzed Keratin , Myristyl Myristate , Citric Acid , Fragrance , Sorbic Acid , Cetyl Alcohol , Stearyl Alcohol , Carthamus Tinctorius Seed Oil (Safflower) , Yeast Extract , Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice , Keratin Amino Acids , Methylparaben , Propylparaben
Cleansers -Korres - Milk Proteins Foaming Cream Cleanser
wysiwyg 4/9/2011 11:25:00 AM
I never thought I'd be so happy with a cleanser. I picked this up at Ulta in an attempt to calm my skin down after a difficult experience with two Mario Badescu cleansers (for reference - Enzyme Cleansing Gel, which resulted in a bright red face -- for hours and supersensitive skin for days; and another that I threw out with this one thereafter. I think the parabens and sulfates were irritating). I love the Boscia Soothing Cream Cleanser and return to it often; I had good luck, too, with Jeffrey Dover's Skin Effects Glycolic Cream Cleanser. I go back often to Cetaphil, too. My challenge with Boscia is availability - though some Ulta and Sephora stores are stocking it; with Cetaphil, I feel it's left makeup residue behind. I'm too lazy and tired at night to use a removal oil then an cleanser. But, I digress. This cleanser dispenses from a tube and is a lotion consistency. I put a small pea-sized drop in my palm (so, this will last FOREVER), emulsify it with a little water by rubbing my palms together (like one might do with a hair gel) - and beautiful foam lathers. It does a great, gentle job of cleaning my face. Some mascaras (just trying the Clinique tubing Bottom Lash) require a different method of removal (hot water and slight pressure), so it doesn't work as well there. I do have to follow immediately with moisturizer or I feel a tad dry, but my skin is dry/very dry year round. This cleanser helped to calm my angry skin from the enzyme cleanser -- and to remedy the fall out from that -- dry patchiness. If you're a Greenie, the packaging is recyclable and comes in a recyclable box. I'm so impressed with this line, I'm exploring their other products.. .I do need another moisturizer soon! Here's the scoop - it's pH neutral and soap-free, and if you're sensitive or veering away from 'cones, parabens, or sulphates (as I'm trying to do): * No Petrochemicals * No Mineral Oil * No Silicones * No Parabens * No Propylene Glycol * No Ethanolamines * No Sulphates * No Sodium Laureth Sulphate (SLES) * No Phthalates * No Synthetic Dye * No Nitro Musk * No Alcohol * No Retinol/AHAs * No Wheat * No Nuts * No Animal-by-products * No Animal Testing
My hair is changing as I'm aging - maybe that's normal, but I've found I don't know how to handle my hair anymore! Enter DevaCurl products, and this one in particular. My hair is normal to fine, getting wavy with a little texture (!). My hair never frizzes and nearly always falls flat in humidity. Conditioners usually weigh my hair down, so I veer toward those that are light and offer little moisture to my dry hair. This is perfect. It moisturizes well and detangles. My hair behaves when I dry it and doesn't act like it's been parched the next time I wash it. I've been shopping around for sulfate-free products and have tried many, but this one, although it smells odd, lands on top in the conditioner category. I bought the travel size to try; I'll be splurging on the full-size soon.
I don't think of my skin as sensitive, but it behaves like it is every time I use this cleanser. I picked up a sample size at Ulta as a spur of the moment purchase (read -- didn't consult you all here at MA) in the little sample bins they have near the register. A poor impulse purchase. I've tried to use it off and on for the last 2-3 weeks. Before finally relegating it to File 13, I used it to cleanse my face after exercising late yesterday. Its fate was sealed when my husband leaned in, about three hours later, feeling my cheeks and forehead for a fever -- my face was bright red. I've gone red for prolonged periods each time I've used this. If you even THINK you have slightly sensitive skin, I'd steer clear of this. For reference, my skin is dry/very dry, in good condition. not particularly temperamental, fair.
This is my first foray into professional hair dryers. After reading the reviews of many popular, high-end brands that seem to break down after a year and searching for a tool that wouldn't be too loud, I narrowed my search to the Cricket or to this dryer. And I love it! This dryer has the high-end features of tourmaline, a ceramic front grill, and nano silver technology -- all intended to dry hair quickly while sealing the shaft and promoting hair health. I don't know about all that, but I will say that my hair dried quickly, required no further attention (I usually use a roller/curling iron/flat iron after drying my hair). My hair looks shiney, healthy, and bouncy and feels full, silky, and light. There are three heat settings - cool, warm, hot - and two speed settings -- low and high. I used the low setting on warm and set using the cool setting, though the dryer also has a cool-shot button. The handle is ergonomically designed and the noise level, as these things go, was low. It doesn't weigh much and feels light and balanced. It has a removable lint filter and two concentrator nozzles, though the slanted angle of the front of the dryer seem to do the trick without either. It's got an extra-long cord and an overheating/auto shut off function. It forces air through quite powerfully, even though the wattage is lower at 1700W than even my travel dryer. I'm surprised more folks aren't using this brand. They sell a few lower end models without the nano/ceramic etc. bells and whistles and some higher end models as well. It's made in Italy by a company that also makes salon hood dryers. I recommend this - Model 325!
I'm surprised by the prior review. I love this eye cream. I'm always on the hunt for reasonably priced, easy to find products that work. This line is carried exclusively by CVS (and is on sale now -- I'm hoping it's not discontinued). So, for context -- I've got VERY dry skin, even on the hazy, hot, humid days of summer. The last year has been remarkably stressful, so I'm unsure if that or reaching my late forties (or both) has changed the skin texture around my eyes. It's dry, paper-thin, crepey. I feel for the first time in my life that I'm looking like I'm getting OLD! So, I've been on the hunt for something that could address the dryness in particular, hoping to resolve the crepe-iness as well. I happened upon Lancome's collaser, which seemed to soften the fine lines but only temporarily; I tried the Biotherm Skin Vivo product; I tried Genefique. I was settling on Kinerase's Restructure Firming Eye Cream, which I do love for addressing my profound dryness, when I saw that Prevention Magazine recommended this eye cream. It's comparatively cheap, as eye creams go, so I tried it. And I'm a convert to Skin Effects. My eyes look more rested, more moisturized (but not at all shiney), less crepey, with a noticeable reduction in fine lines. The effect seems enduring, by which I mean that I'm not noticing the same lines after I wash my face/shower if I wait to apply moisturizer. I don't look pooped at the end of the day. I noted that my skin responds positively to hyaluronate, and this has retinol in it as well. I have no irritation or development of milia with this product. I've been using it for roughly a month. So, for those of you that like to see the ingredients - Water, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Squalane, Cyclopentasiloxane, Butylene Glycol, Cetyl Alcohol, Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil, Tocopheryl Acetate, Retinyl Palmitate, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Ubiquinone, Panthenol, Ceramide 2, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Sodium Palmitoyl Proline, Nymphaea Alba Flower Extract, Gynostemma Pentaphyllum Leaf Extract, Panax Ginseng Root Extract, Glycerin, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Sodium PCA, Bis-Ethylhexyl Hydroxydimethoxy Benzylmalonate, Carbomer, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Leaf Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Sodium Hydroxide, Disodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Fragrance, Blue 1, Ext. Violet 2.
Polishes -Sally Hansen - Complete Salon Manicure Nail Polish
wysiwyg 2/27/2010 2:13:00 PM
This was an impulse purchase. I'm a sucker for wine-y reds for pedicures. I'm a cool, fair skinned person, and many reds look orange-y. Not this. I love the flat brush; it provides greater control over the polish. It applies evenly and without streaks and lasts well. I painted a fingernail using the same routine I use for a pedicure so that you could see it -- http://img.makeupalley.com/9/3/0/8/1559440.JPG Foundation II as a base; two coats of polish; Seche Vite top coat. I know this says it's a complete polish, but I'd not wear a dark red without a base coat, and I think any polish is improved with Seche Vite top coat. A pedicure lasts until I take it off. I nearly never polish my fingernails but am lured to review the color selection of these polishes and take the dive. I was disappointed with China Glaze's staying power; otherwise, I use Opi and Essie polishes. Sally Hansen may have a convert.
Styling Products -Garnier - Garnier Fructis Style Volume Inject Mousse
wysiwyg 2/27/2010 1:13:00 PM
I bought this as a stop-gap between using Living Proof Full Thickening and waiting for my HerCut Shag Catalyst to arrive, and it's been a good purchase. It is a bit drying, IMO, so it's not HG.
Eyes -BeneFit Cosmetics - She Laq ] [DISCONTINUED]
wysiwyg 2/27/2010 1:07:00 PM
Love this! No more worn-away eyeliner, and I can choose among any cheap mascara I wish without flakes, smudging, smearing - even in this crazy winter, eye-watering wind we've had of late in the mid-Atlantic. I use the built-in brush for eyeliner and bought a dirt-cheap Sonia Kashuk spoolie for the lower lashes. No glazing or sticky feeling of either liner or lashes. -- I'm not a waterline person; I have no idea how this would work there.
Styling Products -Unlisted Brand - HerCut Style Catalyst - The Shag Catalyst
wysiwyg 2/27/2010 12:00:00 PM
3/13/10 Edit: I wouldn't call this a Holy Grail, but I would re-purchase this. I've discovered that it does very little for me unless I dry my hair about 1/2 way first then apply. The good news is that I am able to use less product this way, and the product is more effective. I do find greater layer independence and movement, and my hair is fuller and more cooperative without looking like "big hair." It just looks thicker and full of body. It has good staying power, and though I'm a wash my hair every day person, I could see that this would permit me to take the second day off - which I will try on a day I don't exercise. I notice no drying or stiffness with this product; it's very touchable and soft. Original review: I'm saying no to re-purchase now but am truly on the fence about this product. I have shoulder length, layered, untreated hair that is fine, plentiful, and, despite a slight natural wave, tends to fall flat. This product is to "lift and separate. Layers lighten so hair can frame with perfection and flow free-er. Texture and dimension make the cut." Well, hmmm. It adds soft fullness. I would not say it adds texture or increases layer separation. My hair doesn't necessary behave more cooperatively, as I hoped it would, and this doesn't seem to help it hold shape/curl, whether dried with a round brush or with rollers. Unlike Living Proof's Full, however, it seems to help my hair act fuller -- as in if/when it falls flat, it doesn't fall flat from root to tip but still stands away from my scalp - and I like that. As with other reviewers, both products did not begin to pump out on initial use at the same time. I expected this and saved the gel portion in another container to use with the cream, if need be, when the gel runs out. It took roughly 5 pumps to get a distribution of both. The odd thing is that, after roughly 10 days of use (2-3 pumps a day), roughly 1/2 the gel product remains. That puts this at a price point not worth the result. Of all the catalyst products, this one may be used with or without a blowdry. I plan to experiment using this without a blowdryer to see whether I'm more pleased with the results. I'll submit an edit thereafter.