Monday, June 21, 2010

Review: Philosophy Kiss Me Lip Balm

Hello! SO today's review is a lip balm/gloss from Philosophy. Prior to this year I hadn't used anything from the brand, partly because of the price but also because the only makeup they used to have was glosses and I wasn't keen on glosses for the longest time. I would hate the way my hair would stick to it, my lips would feel goopy, or my cups would always look gross. Not to mention they would dry my lips out like crazy. Well, not anymore! I have to say that Philosophy has some of the greatest glosses around. They are soooo moisturizing, but light at the same time. The one I have is called Kiss Me, a very emollient lip balm. Even though it's called a balm I'd say it still counts as a gloss as it does give shine. I checked on and the only shade they had this type of gloss/balm in was a deeper red, but I'm sure that you can find it online. If not, check out Marshall's. That's where I got it for $3.

Here's the applicator:

It's packaged in a standard squeeze tube. One thing I don't like is sometimes, if it's cool, the balm tends to be thicker and is harder to squeeze out. If you keep in in your pocket though you shouldn't have a problem. Body heat and all, haha!

A swatch:

Sorry, no lip swatch today :( Kiss Me is just a very sheer pink with some very fine, barely noticeable shimmer in it. It really does look mostly clear on the lips. It feels sooooo good! It smells minty and has a bit of a cooling sensation when you first put it on. It's sooooo refreshing! Also, it's very moisturizing as well. After I wear this I feel like I've exfoliated and moisturized my lips with a heavy duty balm, no joke. Other glosses have always left my lips peeling and gross, but this one leaves them nice and clean and smooth. And although it's a balm it does give a bit of a shine to the lips--very understated and natural. I'm definitely going to get more Philosophy glosses. This one is, without a doubt, one of the best balms/glosses I've tried.


Price: $12 (retail--isn't this a good price for a high end gloss!? I got mine at Marshall's for $3. Even better!)

Ingredients: Oxybenzone (2.0%),Octinoxate (7.5%), Hydroxylated Lanolin, Petrolatum, Steareth-2, Mineral Oil, Bis-Diglyceryl Polyacyladiapate-2, Microcrystalline Wax, C18-38 Alkyl Hydroxystearoyl Stearate, Beeswax, Mentha Piperita (Peppermint) Oil, Squalane, Paraffin, Alcloxa, Tocopheryl Acetate, Actinidia Chinensis (Kiwi) Seed Oil, Water (Aqua), Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Sodium Saccharin, Phenoxyethanol.

Disclosure: The product featured in this post was bought by me for the purpose of my personal use. If you have any further questions about disclosure, don't hesitate to ask in the comments.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Review: AcneFree Terminator Spot Control Gel (Benzoyl Peroxide)

So after using Clean Advantage Acne Spot Treatment for the past five years I didn't think that I'd ever find anything that works better. Well, I did. I'd recently run out and, when I was at Ocean State Job Lot I spotted Acne Free's Terminator Spot Control Gel for $4. Now, I'd never tried anything from Acne Free so I was a bit curious. And this a benzoyl peroxide treatment, not salacylic acid, like I'm used to and I wanted to see how well this would compare. I have to say that it blew Clean and Clear Advantage out of the park! It's that good!

The gel is 2% benzoyl peroxide. Benzoyl peroxide works by killing the bacteria that causes acne. As it is an oxidizing agent, it infuses the inflamed area with oxygen. This kills the bacteria as it likes an oxygen free environment.

One major reason that I really like this gel over Clean and Clears is the packaging. This one is in a squeeze tube with a flip top. Clean and Clears has a tiny little screw off cap. I don't like it cause I tend to lose the cap every now and then and have to hunt around for it, which is annoying beyond belief especially when I'm in a a hurry or just really tired. The flip top is definitely more convenient.

Here's the actual product:

It's a bit of a chunkier/thicker gel. I am in love with this product. While the gel is a bit thick (thicker than the C & C one) it dries very quickly and perfectly clear. The C & C one takes longer to dry and it feels odd. It has this odd texture and if you touch it it tends to rub off in these weird crumbles. The Acne Free one I can easily wear under makeup--it doesn't have any odd texture to it when it dries. Also, this gel works overnight. If I put it on before I go to sleep I see dramatic results the next morning. With the C & C gel I don't see results for at least two days. Also, unlike the C & C one, this one doesn't irritate or dry out my skin. When I put the C & C gel on I feel this strong tingle, an almost burning sensation. I used to be like, "Oh, well that's ok. At least I know it's working." I subscribed to the notion that harsh skincare was the only kind that worked, which is soooo wrong. Anyway, after using the C & C gel my skin would be sooo dry in that area. I would always hate to put concealer on as it would look so obvious over the dry, flaky, scaly skin. I have no such problem with the Acne Free gel. My skin doesn't dry out and it doesn't tingle/burn. It's very gentle but also effective at the same time, which I love!!! I'd tried Neutrogena's On The Spot acne cream which I was told was a gentle formula. It didn't work at all, so after that I would look for harsher products thinking that if I could feel them working they'd be more effective. Anyway, I was wrong and I've been treating my skin a lot more gently. Anyway, this gel is really good and I highly recommend it to everyone!!!

Oh, and if you're interested in Acne Free products, check out Ocean State Job Lot if you live near one. They had three step sets for $10, a 50% savings from the retail price!


Price: $5.99 (that's retail--I got it for $4 at Ocean State Job Lot)

Ingredients: Benzoyl Peroxide (2%), Water (Aqua), Butylene Glycol, Methylpropanediol, Glycyrrhiza Glabra Extract (Licorice), Triethanolamine, Carbomer, Melaleuca Alternifolia Leaf Oil (Tea Tree), Bisabolol, Allyl Methacrylates Crosspolymer, Algae (Seaweed) Extract (Seaweed), Disodium Lauriminodipropionate Tocopheryl Phosphates (Vitamin E), Artemisia Vulgaris Oil (Mugwort/Armoise), Triclosan, Willow Bark Extract, Iodopropynyl Butlycarbamate, Diazolidinyl Carbamide

Disclosure: The product featured in this post was bought by me for the purpose of my personal use. If you have any further questions about disclosure, don't hesitate to ask in the comments.

Summer Nails Part 1 (OPI)

Left to right: Cosmo-Not Tonight Honey, Bronzed to Perfection, Vodka and Caviar

I'm starting a new series of nail polishes by season and this will be the first installment (well, duh, haha). Here are three great nail polishes perfect for summer, all by OPI. I'll try to have an installment a week.

Cosmo-Not Tonight Honey (Russian collection)

Get it? As in a cosmonaut? Haha, took me a while. Anyway, I usually go with one coat. Gives lots of shimmery goodness! It's one of my favorite shimmery beige's.

Bronzed To Perfection (South Beach collection)

I know it looks kinda ugly on my finger nail, but it looks amazing on the feet. It's unlike any other color I own. It's a red based, very warm, rich brown with golden glitter. This was the only polish I got from the South Beach collection as the other ones were variations on what I already have. I guarantee you that you do not have anything like this in your collection.

And finally, Vodka and Caviar (Russian collection)

This one is the perfect cherry red. It does have a bit of a jelly texture so it does apply slightly on the sheer side, but it is the perfect blue based red. If you have a tan this polish will made your skin look even tanner.

More to come!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Review: C.O. Bigelow Rose Salve (HIT PAN!!!)

Ok, I have to say that I thought this day would never come. I've been using this very same balm for the past, oh I would say almost year and a half and still, and I never thought I'd actually hit pan!!! Well it's not really a pan, but whatever... I'm sooooo happy! There's something so justifying about getting close to finishing a product. I feel like if I actually come close, then I am somewhat reasonable in the amount of makeup (or beauty products) that I buy. Delusions, I know, but it feels good all the same. Ok, onto the review.

Mine's really beat up cause I've had it for the longest time.

See how beat up it is? I even think I stepped on it once :/ Oopsie!

The actual balm:

Isn't that beautiful!? I'm almost done!!! The balm is just a slightly rose tinted jelly. It's got a very smooth consistency. You do have to be careful how you store it, however, especially if you like to toss it in your purse. Don't leave it anywhere warm because the balm will become soft and/or melt. I've never had it leak out of the container, but I have had it set in weird ways. One time I left it standing up vertically in the cup holder in my car and I came back the next morning and half of it was set to the lid. I don't have to say it was a pain to use. Now I just leave it by the bed to use at night. It's not very convenient to use during the day as you need to stick your finger in it.

A swatch:

So yeah, pretty much clear.
Another swatch:

As you can see, it does give a bit of shine. And it is very moisturizing. I have to say though, I does sit on the lips for a long time. But if you don't mind that, you'll like this balm. Another thing I like about it is how multipurpose it is. You can use it on dry patches, cuticles, etc, not just your lips. Personally, I don't as I find it kinda gross to use it on my body when I put it on my lips as well, but if you get a separate one to use elsewhere, I don't see any problems with it. I did use it once on my dry, red, and cracking nuckles in the winter and I have to say that it does work.

I've also been using this to refill lip palettes. I don't use it on its own as it would probably make a huge mess if it melted anywhere. I melt down a half-half base of this and a more solid lipbalm, like my Yes To Carrots, C-Me-Smile lip butter. It works as well as Vaseline without that nasty smell. Well anyway, I really like this product. Can't wait to be done with it, but still really like, haha! I kinda wanna try out the strawberry version from Smiths. Let me know in comments if you like it too!


Price: $5.50

Ingredients: Petrolatum, Lanolin Oil, Squalane, Flavor (Aroma), Octyldodecanol, Gossypium Herbaceum (cotton), Seed Oil, Rosa Canina Fruit Extract, Bisabolol, Jojoba Esters, Red 30-lake (CI 73360)

Disclosure: The product featured in this post was bought by me for the purpose of my personal use. If you have any further questions about disclosure, don't hesitate to ask in the comments.

Changes to the Blog :)

I just wanted to let you guys know that I'll be making some changes to the layout. Nothing crazy. I just felt like trying something new. Let me know what you think! Just not right now, cause I'm not done yet, haha! Have a good day!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Comparison: CK Summer Affair Bronzer and Guerlain Terracotta Bronzer

A couple of days ago I posted a review on the Calvin Klein Summer Affair Bronzer in Sun Dance. Here's a comparison of it to my Guerlain Terracotta Bronzer in 02.

As you can see, the Guerlain bronzer is a bit darker and definitely more orange than the CK one. And if you remember, it shattered and I had to re-press it which is why it looks so messy :(

And swatches:

Left: CK. Right: Guerlain.

The CK one is a lot more subtle. I use it as an overall bronzer and then use the Guerlain one over top to contour my face. It looks a lot more natural and gradiated this way, and not as obvious.

EOTD: Teal Blues with Nars Misfit

First off, sorry for the bad quality. I quickly took these pics cause I was in a hurry and didn't pay attention to the setting :( Anyway, it's a teal blue-ish kinda seafoam green look. I know I've done some blue looks in the past, but I like blue. And it always makes a comeback in the summer. I'll post another look I did using just about the same products later this week!

Oh, and I'm not wearing mascara because my eyes have been killing me lately. I got contacts about a year ago and my eyes just don't like them. I'm trying out a new brand, but so far no luck :(

Products Used:
Urban Decay UDPP
Nars E/S Duo in Misfit
Lancome E/S inDaylight
Stila E/s in Mystic
Nars E/S Duo in Paris

Friday, June 11, 2010

Review: CK Calvin Klien Summer Affair Bronzing Powder and Sheer Plumping Lip Gloss

Again, I'd really like to applolgize for being gone for so long. I've just been so busy with everything else that I lost track, but I'll tell you about that later. Anyhow, I stopped by Marshalls again a few days ago and found a Calvin Klein duo for FIVE DOLLARS!!! It came with a bronzer and a lipgloss. Unbelievable!!! And they had other sets on clearance too. If you live near a Marshalls you have to check these out!!! I'm not certain if Sephora still carries CK cosmetics. I haven't seen them on the website in quite a while, but I'm not entirely sure if they phased them out. Lemme know if you know!

Ok, so bronzer first.

It's the Summer Affair Bronzing Powder in 302, Sun Dance.

The compact:

I actually really like the compact. I don't normally like large, bulky ones, but this one has a nice feel to it. And it looks very sophisticated with the white lettering.

The inside:

In the store it looked a lot darker than in this picture so I was a bit worried. But really, it's a nice medium shade, not too dark, not too light. And it's not very orange either.

The powder pan lifts up and there's a little compartment for the brush.

The applicator:

I actually quite like this brush. It's flat but full, if that makes sense. The bristles are very soft, not scratchy like others you get with a powder. I actually use this one!

The bottom of the case has some holes to let the powder and brush "breath."

A swatch:

On the right it's unblended. On the left, I rubbed it in a bit.

I really like this bronzer. The powder is very soft and blends like a dream. A lot of times with bronzers they blend out splotchy, but not this one. I goes on very smooth and gives me the perfect sunkissed look. For $2.50 that's amazing. It goes on better than my Guerlain bronzer, which says a lot! And for all intents and purposes, it's matte. I know that you can see a slight sheen in the swatch, but you can barely notice it when you apply it on the face. I really hate chunky, glitzy, glittery bronzers as they make me look oilier. But no such problem with this one. I highly recommend!!!

The gloss:

First off, I love the packaging! It doesn't have any lettering on the actual tube, which is good imo. I really hate it when the writing starts to rub off and it looks old. Not a problem with this one!

I love the simplicity of CK stuff. This reminds me a lot of Chanel's packaging only a bit more modern.

The shade it came in was 203, Sugar Spun. It looks like melted brown sugar, haha! The label also says that it is a plumping gloss, which I didn't know. I don't really think it is plumping. I think that like all glosses it gives the illusion of fuller lips. I don't think there are any ingredients in it that actually plump the lips.

The applicator:

I am actually happy with this brush. Usually when I see a brush instead of a regular doe foot, I groan cause I hate having goopy lips. But this one is smaller, so it doesn't deposit too much product.

A swatch:

It's a shimmery warm tan shade that applies almost clear but with this glazed sorta glitzy look.

A swatch:

A better swatch:

It gives a bit of color, almost a caramel tint to the lips kinda like my Urban Decay Pocket Rocket in Kirk. It's very understated. I love the shine, though. It gives a really nice lacquer finish, very glossy. I didn't notice any plumping however, but it did make my lips look larger (because of the glossyness, not any actual plumping ingredients). And there isn't a strong smell or taste either, which is good. Overall, for five dollars, you can't beat both of these. Heck, five dollars is less than many drugstore lip glosses alone!!! Definitely a value, so check them out if you can at Marshalls!


Price: $5 (clearanced at Marshall's)


Gloss: Polybutene, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Pentaerythrityl Tetraisostearate, Dicalcium Phosphate, Silica Silylate, Menthol, Silica Dimethyl Silylate, Capsicum Frutescens Resin, Pentaerythrityl Tetra-Di-T-Butyl Hydroxyhydrocinnamate, Butylene Glycol, Sodium Chondroitin Sulfate, Atelocollagen +/- (May Contain/Peut Contenir) Mica, Ci 15850/Red 6, Red 6 Lake, Red 7, Red 7 Lake, Ci 15985/Yellow 6 Lake, Ci 19140/Yellow 5 Lake, Ci 42090/Blue 1 Lake, Ci 45410/Red 27 Lake, Red 28 Lake, Ci 73360/Red 30 Lake, Ci 75470/Carmine, Ci 77491, 77492, 77499/Iron Oxides, Ci 77891/Titanium Dioxide.

Bronzer: (not listed on packaging, so I'll post if I find them online).

Disclosure:The products featured in this post were bought by me for the purpose of my personal use. If you have any further questions about disclosure, don't hesitate to ask in the comments.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

I'm still alive!!!

I know, it's been a while and I'm sooo sorry! Classes are done for the year and I had a lot to do finishing out and getting stuff together for next year. Anyway, I just wanted to let you guys know that I am still alive and will be posting some new reviews soon! And I got a new camera!!! That's it for now, more soon!