Finishing up my week-long sample of this moisturizer and purchasing the full size. I have classic combo skin: oily T-zone and dry cheeks and was looking for a daily moisturizer with decent SPF light yet moisturizing for humid NYC summers. This texture is creamy but slightly matte, exactly like half sunscreen half moisturizer. Right after application there is a very slight white cast on my NC30 light tan Asian skin, but within minutes (like 3) it absorbs to a satiny colorless finish. It is a wonderful base for all foundation types (current HGs are Revlon Creme Whipped and MUFE Pro-Finish powder). This lotion leaves my skin supple and moisturized but not moist or tacky at all. It balances my skin throughout the day with shine peeking through around hour 6 of my workday. I really like it and will try other Bare Minerals skincare!
Purchased in High Dive and have used every day since. The BE MUA advised it is the exact shade of Warmth, but pressed. This is exactly what I was looking for. I apply with my Flawless Face brush and get that flushed tan sunkissed effect with zero shimmer or sparkle, the precise effect I want from my bronzer; just a real natural (looking) tan! AND now I can take it with worrying it will spill and lose product like the Warmth loose powder. Plan on purchasing the Deep End, which the MUA said is the pressed version of Faux Tan, next.
Gorgeous, HG blush on my NC30/C4 light neutral tan Asian skin. This is THE perfect warm pink blush that somehow doesn't bring out the few broken capillaries in my cheeks. It looks great and flushed without being too clownlike or blushlike, which can happen when I use a heavy hand with MAC's Fleur Power, which is very similar, but not as subtle. I love using Amour to top of bronzers too. It totally gives you that Victoria's Secret angel pink-cheeked look. I apply with a Nars Yachiyo or MAC 116 on top of powdered skin and it lasts 6-8 hours. Love it!!!!
Only the 3rd fragrance I ever purchased so I deliberated for awhile on this one. It is very light, fresh, and with basically a flaky and flighty personality when initially sprayed and seriously reminded me of a room freshener. However, over the hours, it warmed on my skin and became MUCH richer and a little more complex with a hint of spiciness, but still the top fragrance of garden flowers which is why I ultimately purchased. It definitely doesn't last, 5-6 hours tops, but that's what you get with such a flaky fragrance, they just don't stick around ;-) Still great every day fragrance that's pretty with that tiny spicy kick.
Powder -Make Up For Ever - Pro Finish Multi-Use Powder Foundation
xtinahb 5/16/2013 11:15:00 AM
Smooth creamy texture, super flexible coverage (sheer to FULL), perfect color match, and long lasting. I love this formula. I purchased in 118 and am MUFE HD 123 / MAC C4 (neutral light tan). This foundation darkens at least 2 shades, so test at least 2 hours before selecting a color. I am combo- dry and use my Sephora Airbrush #55 brush. It is really buildable so start light because it looks super matte quickly. But with just a layer or two it has a lovely semi-matte finish that lasts at least 6 hours with no shine. It does not catch on any dry areas at all, just moisturize beforehand. It looks natural but finished. Perfect for work in NY muggy Spring / Summer and easy touching up. The only con is it is a VERY soft powder and I broke one of the testers :-/ so be gentle! But it's the soft texture that makes it so smooth and nice, so it's worth it! Highly recommend for combo gals and girls.
Working off a week-long sample and my skin is loving this. I use this after cleansing with my Clarisonic Mia on my off nights from Retin-A and it is gentle enough for my mid-30s skin with fine wrinkles. This product seems to have has actual skincare benefits and feels much more effective than other Badescu toners and even my current HG Shiseido Hydro-nourishing softener. It doesn't just cleanse, it seems to mildly exfoliate as well. It seems to make my skin smoother and more radiant after just a week of use. Not drying, non-alcoholic, too. Will definitely purchase the full size.
Makeup Brushes -Ecotools - Airbrush Concealer Brush
xtinahb 5/9/2013 4:19:00 PM
This replaced my MAC 224 as my concealing brush. Softer bristles, but slightly denser with a shorter head so it's much better for blending than the 224 which I find too floppy. Super value, blends seamlessly. So glad I didn't buy the Sephora Airbrush Concealer brush and found this instead! (but still run and buy the Sephora Airbrush Foundation brush #55 cause that's worth every penny).
A nice mild toner that refreshes and picks up remnants not removed by my cleanser, but nothing special and definitely doesn't have any skincare qualities, like Shiseido softeners do. I wanted to try it since Shiseido softeners were getting a little too $$$ to buy every 2 months. The best quality about it is the chic packaging and the fact that it didn't irritate my skin. It has a stronger fragrance than I would expect. I would think the range for sensitive skin would be fragrance free? But it still is mild and my skin had no issues with it. But again, nothing special and I am returning to Shiseido, which is worth the extra $10.
Makeup Brushes -Real Techniques by Samantha Chapman - Setting Brush
xtinahb 5/8/2013 11:27:00 AM
A fun brush to have in the mix. I like the shorter handle size and the durable synthetic hairs really keep their shape, so Real Techniques are the brushes that go into my makeup bag on the go, since they are not precious or $$$. It's a good versatile size I use for undereye and around the nose setting, but it is slightly too dense for a light powder application, so I definitely tap a lot of powder off the brush before I apply the brush to my face. I do like the unique size though; this small to medium size is hard to find in the brush world!
Lipstick -Maybelline - Color Whisper-Rose of Attraction
xtinahb 5/8/2013 11:22:00 AM
This is a really great MLBB color on my pigmented C4/NC30 light tan Asian complexion. It is a brighter pink color with a touch of glitter (subtle, but it is definitely GLITTER, not just iridescent shimmer) that is looking great with tan or coral blushes and still 100% work appropriate. It could be more moisturizing and barely lasts 2 hours though, so I knocked a star off. But for this color, this price, and the fun jelly colored packaging, it is a winner.
Beautiful pigmentation and brightening effect, but definitely creases and gets powdery after a few hours. I purchased in Custard for my C4/NC30ish light tan Asian skin. It has a thicker whipped consistency and applies smoothly, best applied with the applicator and patted in with index finger I found. Sweeps around the nose and laugh lines really do brighten the face with radiance and I love that there is NO shimmer, it is just some magic quality to the pigmentation that really brightens. However, it creases throughout the day and after a full day at work, it looks dry and patchy. It does truly make me look flawless the first 4 hours though, so it will be my go-to when I only need to be out for 4 or less hours, lol.
HG in the house. A beautiful pigmented soft coral that has the easiest, blendable texture, hard for me to come by with cream blushes since I am so heavy handed and have dry cheeks! On my NC30 Asian light tan complexion, a few taps with my ring finger directly on the stick then I tap the finger on my cheek leaves a noticeable (but still natural-esque), warm coral-pink. I can easily blend and smooth out soft edges and the color spreads evenly with my fingers. A true first for me with a cream blush. It also lasts a long time for me, at least 6 hours. It is now always in my bag. Super fan.
Foundations -Cover Girl - Outlast Stay Fabulous 3 in 1 Foundation
xtinahb 3/14/2013 3:23:00 PM
Excellent DS formula I am reaching for more and more often. Truly longwearing and lasts easily to the end of the workday. It has a nice very smooth silicon/silky texture that dries quickly to a soft powder finish with medium-full coverage. I definitely feel the "primer" part of the 3-1 formula (primer, concealer, foundation) in that silky texture and in a good way. It is not a "natural" foundation, also in a good way, in that you clearly look polished and finished but just made-up, not lacquered on. I actually prefer smoothing with my hands because of that primer-like feel and then I blend with a dry flat-top brush. I wear 842 Medium Beige on my light tan Asian NC30 skin. It dries ever-so-slightly dark and is perfect on my winter skin. I will need to go up one shade for summer and I will definitely buy the darker shade! Worth a try!
Pressed Powders -NARS - Light Reflecting Pressed Setting Powder
xtinahb 3/12/2013 10:06:00 AM
I already know I will hit pan on this amazing powder. Kett, MUFE HD, Laura Mercier, all now take a total backseat to the Pressed Nars setting powder. It is truly colorless on my light tan Asian NC30/C4 complexion. It truly keeps my skin satin/almost matte (but still healthy) for a solid 6 hours. There is no powderiness. I can layer and layer and buff and buff and I just get more and more surreal skin, but after a couple layers it definitely looks, well, surreal, so I tend to stop after a quick layer using a flat-top natural hair brush for my major planes and a smaller setting brush for around the nose, etc (I like a discontinued Lancome 'Cheekers' brush for the flat top brush and Nars Yachiyo around the curves of my face). If you buy be sure to have the MUA "ground" up the top layer of your powder. They can just use a big, flat kabuki style brush and scrape away the top film as they did at the Nars store for me here in NYC. You don't lose hardly any powder at all and it just makes the powder all ready to use! It's ah-may-zing. A+.
This was my wedding foundation on a humid, August sunny afternoon in New York. It is a great formula for my combination dry complexion. Long wearing, truly matte (but not flat), with solid medium to full coverage leaving my skin even and finished and can be built up as needed. It is exactly what I want for the office and for power-wear from day to night. I also own Sheer Glow and much prefer the Matte formula due to better longevity. On my light tan neutral Asian NC30/C4 complexion, I use Stromboli.If you have a similar skin type (combo dry) and are looking for a polished, medium finish with long wear, def try a sample of this stuff!