Monday, May 20, 2013

{Review} Rimmel Stay Matte Pressed Powder

Here's a review I've been meaning to do for a while now. I've been a long time use of the Stila Sheer Pressed Powder in light. I love that powder, but it is tooooooo expensive ($28). So I've been on the hunt for a cheaper alternative. Around the time I finished my last Stila powder I was hearing a lot about the Rimmel Stay matte Powder on YouTube and thought I'd give it a try. Here are my thoughts :)

 The shade I purchased it in is 001 Transparent. I wouldn't say that it is completely transparent. I think if I apply this over a moiturizer or a primer, it sticks better and I do get a bit of coverage. If you have a deeper skin tone I would go with your actual shade as this stuff may leave a cast.

As you can see I've had this powder for a while and have used up a good chunk of it. I apply mine with a medium powder brush. I use a smaller brush to set my under eye concealer. This is approximately 3 months of use for me. I apply it once in the morning after doing my makeup, a touch up around noon, and another touch up around 4 or 5 pm.

 The swatch above is quite heavy, I just wanted to show you the consistency. It is a finely milled powder, and if blended in very well can be undetectable. The powder gives a very very matte finish. If you like you skin to look more natural, more satin finish, this is not the powder for you. This gives you a fully matte look. Sometimes I will spray a bit of toner after I apply this powder, just to have a more natural finish.

As far as lasting power goes, it keeps me matte for about 4 or 5 hours. I'd say this is a decent powder. It does what it says. It's also a no frills kind of a powder. I was satisfied with the effect, but after using my Stila powder for so long and having gotten used to that soft lit perfect skin effect this powder didn't feel as luxurious. The only negative I would have to say about this product is to be careful about applying too much. You can really build this powder up if you wanted to, but then it becomes very obvious.

Overall, a good budget buy :)


Price: $4. 96


{Skincare} Coconut Oil

Hey there! So to kick off my natural skin care series I'm going to talk a little bit A LOT about coconut oil. If you've been reading this blog for a while now you know I'm a busy working girl so I'm game for anything that can be used in different ways and is good for me. Coconut is one of these multi use products for me!!!

So what is coconut oil? Coconut oil is an oil that is extracted from the white meat of a coconut. Predictably, it smells DIVINE! I used to hate coconut scented products because the scent was always very strong, artificial and pungent. This stuff is the real deal and smells amazing. Coconut oil will usually be solid at room temperature (and white) but will melt clear at around 75 degrees, a relatively low melting point.

I purchase my coconut oil from Trader Joe's. I think this large 16 oz bottle was around $6 or $7 dollars, so very very inexpensive when compared to all of the expensive body lotions and creams I've purchased over the years. I also like that it comes in a glass jar instead of a plastic one. The Trader Joe's coconut oil is VIRGIN, meaning that it is COLD PRESSED, so no chemicals or heat are used in the refining process, which is good. In addition, it is USDA certified organic!

The brand of coconut oil you get doesn't really matter. I would just look for the USDA organic certification and make sure that it is virgin or cold pressed. 

Here's what the actual oil looks like. It was about warm outside when I took this picture so it was starting to melt a little bit. I decant a few table spoons into a smaller container that I leave in my bathroom and leave the big jar in my kitchen because I also use it for cooking!

So how do I use coconut oil?

My favorite way has been as a moisturizer. I will take a little glob of it (for lack of better word), warm it in between my hands until it liquifies (just a few seconds) and then smooth it over my freshly shaved legs and anywhere else I want to moisturize. I let it absorb for a few minutes before getting dressed.

I also sometimes mix it with whatever lotion I'm currently using. Although I probably will not be repurchasing most of these lotions, I do what to finish up the ones that don't make me itch. I've spent a lot of money on them and I hate to waste anything.

I've also recently been loving this as a makeup remover! I used to think that you would have to pry that small blue bottle of Almay out of my cold dead fingers but honestly, I can really see myself doing without it as coconut oil works even better for me. It doesn't sting my eyes, doesn't cost a lot of money, removes even the most stubborn of waterproof mascaras, and conditions my lashes. What more can I ask for? And unlike the Almay makeup remover: no mineral oil :)

I also use it on my hair. During the day I sometimes smooth some onto the ends of my hair just to condition them a bit. If my hair is really acting up I will use this as a mask. You have to shampoo really well so that it doesn't feel greasy after, but my hair feels so so so soft after I do this.

Scrubs: Coconut oil works great when mixed with another carrier oil and salt or sugar to make an amazing scrub. On it's own I don't use it for scrubs because it will solidify at room temperature, but if you use less coconut oil and more of another oil (I'm currently loving apricot kernel oil or almond oil) then it stays liquid and smells great. I've been preferring the salt scrubs lately because summer is coming and I'm showing more skin and shaving more often. If you do use salt just remember to do the scrub before you shave and rinse all of the salt off well. Otherwise, it will sting you legs when you shave. 

There are tons and tons and tons of different skin care uses for coconut oil. I just wanted to share with you a few of my favorites. I will definitely have some more posts about coconut oil and show some demos as well as tutorials.

If you have any questions or requests, feel free to leave them in the comments!


{Skincare} My Attempts At Going More Natural

Over the past few months I've started the process of going more natural with skin care.

I made the decision to try this due to several factors. For one, many of the heavily scented products have been making me ITCH LIKE CRAZY. My neck, chest, and arms would be covered in red welts from itching after I applied my body lotion. Not all scented products were making me itch, but enough that I started to get concerned.

I've also started to do some research about the many chemicals that are in some beauty products that has absolutely floored me. For one, when I started to itch I bought a "hypoallergenic" unscented body lotion. I was shocked to find that this word means absolutely NOTHING. NADA. A brand can use this term in any way that they want to because there are no federal guidelines that govern it's use. So that unscented/fragrance free body lotion isn't any better than the scented one because it will usually have a masking agent that masks the nasty scent of the other chemicals in it. I don't know about you, but that kinda freaks me out a little bit.

And finally: cost. I've been looking into the cost of natural and/or organic products and surprisingly there are a lot of products that are fairly inexpensive. I know almost everyone thinks that natural and organic (there is a BIG difference!!!) products are super expensive (and they can be), but that's not necessarily the case. I've found a lot of different brands that offer high quality luxury makeup and body care products that are either priced the same as their counterparts or even cheaper.

So this post wasn't meant to scare you away. Honestly, I'm only in the early early stages of this process. I still have a lot of non natural/organic products that I will want to finish up. To be perfectly honest, I know right now that there are some products that I will not do without and will continue to buy even though they are not natural or organic. They just do the job for me. On the other hand, there are tons of products that I can easily replace with better, more natural alternatives that work just as well. That's where my focus is right now. I'm not going super super super green, I'm just becoming a little bit more conscious about what I purchase and put on my body now. I will be sharing some of my experiences and opinions coming soon.

In the mean time, please don't let this post scare you! As always I still love makeup and beauty and all things pretty :) If you have any requests please feel free to leave them in comments.


Sunday, May 19, 2013

{Update} Where have I been???

I've been a busy bee...classes (hard!!!) and work (went from two to three part time jobs!!!!). So yeah--no time to blog during the semester unfortunately. Thank you to those of you who have continued to support this blog even while I've been MIA. I've really missed you and you will have plenty of new posts coming :)