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Wednesday, August 31, 2011

EOTD: Deep Night

Hey guys, how's everyone doing? It's such a bed weather Wednesday and I'm not complaining because I love the rain. Anyway, this will just be another quick post. I tried another pair of false eyelashes sometime last week from the set sent by KKcenterHK. It's the most unnatural-looking pair in the bunch, something that I called "peacock tail lashes" because they look so thick and heavy.



This pair feels heavy on the lashes and somewhat makes me feel uncomfortable every time I blink. But I like how these falsies opened up my eyes. Please note that this is the only pair which I find heavy and uncomfy.

My mom doesn't like this pair on me though and even said there's no way she's letting me go out wearing these falsies. Said it made me look like a cat and made my eyes look sharper. :-\

Overall, I like the set that I chose because I get a variety of natural-looking lashes with a couple that are dramatic. I cannot really comment on the ease of application since I'm a newbie and I still haven't developed any technique when it comes to applyin 'em. I also think that the quality of these lashes are good because I remember buying my first ever pair of falsies 2 years ago and they were so much harder to use. Another thing is that I believe these are really affordable for only $7.96 for the whole set. However, if you're not a fan or purchasing stuff online and the waiting game, you may not like it. And even though I'm not the type who wears falsies, I just might try going out wearing a pair from this set. By the way, it's the style A500 again.

And another half FOTD wearing one. Still the same old angle. Getting tired of it? :P

Products I used:
- Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel
- Shu Uemura Face Architect Smoothing Fluid Foundation
- Maybelline Dream Mousse Concealer
- Skinfood Choco Powder Eyebrow Wood Pencil
- ELF Mineral Eyelid Primer
- Deep Night, African Violet, and Sparkling Dew eye shadows from the Laura Mercier Colour Classics Face Palette
- falsies from style A500
- Stila Contouring Trio
- Kanebo Coffret D'Or Blush in PK22
- Kryolan Anti-Shine Powder
- Korres Lip Butter Pomegranate
- Dior Addict High Color Melting Shiny Lip Color in 432 Rose Orgasme/Joy Pink

Happy Wednesday, super awesome peeps! :P

Cheers,
Disclaimer: Product received for review and PR consideration but that does not affect my opinion regarding the product.

Coming up: Clinique Moisture Surge Extended Thirst Relief Review
Read more...

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Yum Moments: Maid in Little Manhattan

Alright, this has got to be the corniest food post title - a combination of two movies with Manhattan on the titles, Maid in Manhattan and Little Manhattan (I like this movie a lot). Anyway, this is one of my fave pizzas - Manhattan Meatlovers from Yellow Cab (together with NY's Finest). I realized that it has been over a month since I have last made a Yum Moments post. :) I've been sick for the past few days and lost my appetite so when I finally craved for pizza, I caved in and ordered. And I was a happy girl. :)


I chose Manhattan over New York (I made it sound like I'm talking about the two cities for real) to somehow reward myself and of course, indulge, because I don't have dengue as other have worried about. So it was an all-meat night for me. Course I didn't eat everything. :P

I love Yellow Cab but sometimes, their pizza is just too oily. And that's how Cafe Lidia's pizza got me - not oily. But I like YC because they're quite generous with the toppings (but not as much as they were before).


Anyway, that's all for tonight. Happy weekend, everyone! :)

Cheers,

Read more...

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Product Review: Bourjois Blush in 54 Rose Frisson

Bourjois is one of the drugstore brands that I find really interesting. Rumor has it that it is a sister company of Chanel. It has also been in the makeup and perfumery scene since the 1860's. I've also read somewhere that makeups from both brands are manufactured in the same roof and are almost the same (much like Lancome and L'Oreal as rumored) so I guess that makes this brand worthy of a second look. Their blushes are a few of their most popular products so when I had the chance to own one of those, I did not let that chance pass. And it's time I share my review on a blush - Rose Frisson.





Description taken from the Bourjois website:

LITTLE ROUND POT BLUSH
ULTRA FINE AND EASY TO BLEND POWDER BLUSH
Our timeless blusher has been around for almost 150 years and have made Bourjois famous worldwide thanks to its amazing texture and packaging.
The baked texture transforms when applied to the skin into an ultra-fine pressed powder, which is easy to apply and blends impeccably. One stroke of the brush reveals the irresistible aroma of the rose scented powder.
Its built-in mirror and brush is perfect for touch-ups on the go!
The Little round pot blush exists in 12 shades to match all skin tones.
Learn more about the Little Round Pot and Bourjois history HERE.

Tips:
For a natural result, smile and apply the blush on your cheekbones with circular movements. Then stretch up to the temples.
If you applied to much, don’t worry; just apply a coat of powder on top of it!

Made in France


What I like:
- The packaging, though very basic, is cute. It also includes a mirror and a brush (which isn't of any good use, as expected from a brush included in the compact).
- Texture is almost the same as my Chanel Joues Contraste - smooth and silky since both are baked blushes.
- A very pretty rosy pink shade that isn't shimmery or glittery. It gives the same kind of glow that I get from Chanel JC.
- Lasting power is pretty good and lasts for at least 4 hours.
- Does not feel chalky.
- Does not look frosty even though it looks that way on the pan.
- Blends very well with the skin and looks natural.
- Never broke out with this blush.
- Has a shelf life of 18 months.

What I don't like:
- Heavily scented which I find overwhelming. The rose scent is definitely stronger than Chanel JCs and even stronger than Guerlain Blush 4 Eclats.
- Only contains 2.5g of product.
- Not locally available.
- Not as cheap as other drugstore blushes.
- The brush, as usual, is useless.

Overall rating: 3.5/5 It is really a nice blush but I find the scent too strong for my liking so this definitely isn't for me. Plus it contains little amount of product considering that these aren't really cheap. But I guess this is the next best thing to a Chanel blush. :)

Will I buy again? No. The scent definitely puts me off. I prefer something unscented or with a subtle scent at the very least. In fact, this blush is already with its new mommy. Scent is really a huge factor for me.

A closer look at the blush

Swatch

Do you have Bourjois blushes?

Happy Wednesday, everyone! :P

Cheers,
Coming up: Clinique Moisture Surge Extended Thirst Relief Review
Read more...

Monday, August 22, 2011

Pink Color Instant Cracking Nail Polish from Born Pretty

Howdy? Here's another quick post. I was supposed to review a blush but decided to post something else instead just because. A couple of weeks ago, I received a Cracking Nail Polish from Born Pretty and it took me a while to figure out how to make cracking polishes work. Sorry, I'm not into nail art and polishes as I don't have the incredible talent that other girls have and you already know who these fab ladies are. :P Anyway, please bear with the application and how it looks. I don't even have a clear polish or a top coat.



It's a pretty pink shade that isn't too bold or bright. I was just surprised at how quickly it dries but I guess that's a good thing because you don't have to blow air on your fingers or put your hands right across a fan just for the polish to dry. I had trouble on my first few attempts but I was able to finally get it right. I later on realized that it was in fact easy to use and looks really nice. I've had it for a few days now and what's great is that even if the tip starts chipping off, it won't be too obvious because of the style.

Here's my weak attempt in using a cracking polish. But the good thing is that it cracks so the mistakes won't be too obvious. :P

Overall a really nice and pretty polish. I am not a nail polish person but I like how it looks. You can buy this polish and other nail art tools as well as makeup from Born Pretty Store Anyway, I hope I can do better next time and maybe that one will look better.
Have a great week, you guys. :)

Cheers,
Disclaimer: Product received for review and PR consideration but does not in any way affect my views on the product.

P.S. Thank you Jayce, for letting me try this product. :)


Coming up: Bourjois Blush in Rose Frisson
Read more...

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Product Review: MAC 190 SE Foundation Brush

How's your weekend, everyone? I certainly hope you're all having a blast. Anyway, it's time for another brush review. I am reviewing one of the very first MAC brushes I owned, way back in summer of 2009. I got this brush as part of the Adoring Carmine Holiday Collection together with the 187SE, 168SE, 194SE, and a pouch. Please note that this is just the short-handled brush and I don't have the full-size 190. On to the review then.


Product Description taken from MAC Cosmetics website:

Pro-quality. A foundation brush designed to create a smooth, even finish, flawless look. Works well with any M·A·C foundation, including Studio Fix and Studio Tech. Use to apply, distribute, and blend foundation into all areas in the face.

19 cm
US$32.00


What I like:
- The bristles are firm but flexible enough to not drag the skin as foundation is applied and blended. Not scratchy either.
- This is a traditional foundation brush that is great in applying liquid, cream, and mousse foundations.
- Coverage can go from light to full when using this brush.
- Creates a flawless and even finish as long as you do not forget to blend. Some people complain about the foundation looking streaky, blotchy, and uneven but seriously, the key is blending. It won't hurt to add a few more strokes. But if you are in a hurry, a flat top brush is the way to go.
- I sometimes use this to apply concealer because the size of the head is just right for the under eyes. Just simply pat, pat, pat and then use my ring finger to pat the concealer one last time and I'm good to go.
- I like the short handle, actually. It gives me better control than long-handled ones like the 187 and 188 because they hit the mirror when I hold it in front of my face.
- The bristles are dense and packed tightly together and makes buffing and blending the foundation easier.
- Locally available at MAC Counters - both full size and those included in holiday sets.

What I don't like:
- It eats a lot of foundation but not as much as the amount sponges absorb. But the trick here is to apply very little foundation using short, gentle strokes and slowly build up from there instead of spreading the foundation in long strokes.
- Full size is expensive and I guess costs more than Php 2000 but will check for the exact price and update this post. The set is also expensive for Php 3850 (not sure if the sets were part of the price increase though).
- The SE ones are made in China whereas the full size ones are made in Japan. But this is not a biggie since this is pretty good.

Overall rating: 4/5 This is a good basic foundation brush but if you have already found something similar to this that works great for you, there is no need to purchase this or the full size. Might as well invest on multi-tasking brushes such as the 187 or the 188.

Will I buy again? I am still not sure if I would but it would entirely depend on my need. See, I've had this for almost 2 years and a half now and it's still in great condition. So let's see if I do in the future. :)


187 made in Japan and 190SE made in China

Have you tried this brush? What other foundation brushes can your recommend?

Happy Saturday, super awesome peeps. :)

Cheers,
Coming up: Bourjois Blush in 54 Rose Frisson
Read more...

Friday, August 19, 2011

Product Review: Becca Cosmetics Boudoir Skin Mineral Powder Foundation

I already found my favorite powder foundation in Kanebo Coffret D'Or but I couldn't keep myself from trying others especially when I see a great deal online. And when I spotted Becca Cosmetics Boudoir Skin Mineral Powder Foundation being sold, I immediately purchased it. I was kind of on the fence with this product due it its being mineral (I broke out with mineral makeup) but I just couldn't resist and it was calling my name. And after using it for a while, here's the much-delayed review of this product.


Shade I got is Bloom which is a perfect match for my skin tone.


Product Description from Becca Cosmetics website:

Create your fantasy skin with BECCA Mineral Powder Foundation. BECCA Boudoir Skin Mineral Powder Foundation with pure mineral pigments is designed for a silky, sheer, weightless finish to suit all ages and skin types, including those with sensitive or acne prone skin. With adjustable, natural looking coverage, this water-resistant mineral marvel is both easy-to-apply and long wearing. Buff some on for sensual, luminous colour that stays put all day; even wear it to bed to mimic smooth, perfect skin around the clock.

For Key Attributes, Artist's Tips, and Ingredients List, click HERE.


What I like:
- The small, rubberized compact resembling a UFO is really sleek and I find it cute plus it has a mirror that comes in handy.
- The texture is nice but not as amazing as Japanese foundations, in my opinion.
- Bloom, which is the shade I have, perfectly matches my skin tone and undertone.
- Provides light coverage that can be built up to medium and full.
- Does not have an annoying scent.
- I like how it helps even out my skin tone. If layered, it can cover minor blemishes and light sun spots or freckles.
- Finish is matte but not flat.
- Even though it isn't as silky and finely milled as Kanebo, I like that it isn't chalky or ashy.
- It does not oxidize on me.
- Has not caused me to break out.
- There are 7 shades to choose from. Not too many and confusing and not very limited either.
- Locally available at Adora in Greenbelt.

What I don't like:
- Does not do much for oil control. I need to touch up in an hour or two.
- Not as long lasting as other powder foundations. It is gone after four hours if no touch up was done.
- Initially made me itchy but I guess my skin adjusted to it.
- Only has a shelf life of 6 months which led me to think and ask why it's that short. Aren't minerals supposed to last for a really, really, really, really long time? I guess that applies to "pure" mineral makeup.
- Only contains 7g and it is pricey for Php 1950 which is the SRP at Adora. (Lucky I got mine for less. *wink*)

Overall rating: 3/5

Will I buy again? No. I should stay loyal to Kanebo. :)



Have you tried this product from Becca Cosmetics?

TGIF! Have a great weekend, guys and gals. :)

Cheers,
Coming up: MAC 190 Foundation Brush Review

Read more...

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The Oompa Loompa Dilemma - On Foundations and Oxidation

You finally got the foundation you've been lemming for the longest time. You thought you have finally found your Holy Grail - your makeup looks flawless, foundation feels like second skin, it provides the coverage you desire, it looks natural and not too made up. After a couple of hours, oops! Wait, it has only been half an hour. You caught a glimpse of yourself on the mirror and to your horror, your foundation has oxidized and turned orange on you. And you realize that you look like a character from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Oompa Loompa! I have read a few articles earlier as to why some foundations oxidize and turn dark or orange on people and what can be done to prevent it. I decided to share what I learned on those articles and that is what you'll see on the rest of this post.



What does it mean when a foundation oxidizes?
- When your foundation looks like a perfect match, both skin tone and undertone-wise, upon application and it turns darker or worse, orange, after a few minutes or hours, it means that your foundation has oxidized. It happens when an oxidative agent interacts with another component or substance, thereby removing electrons from it which then leads to a change in color.

Does it happen to all foundations?
- It is hard to tell if oxidation happens to all foundations. Some people claim that a certain foundation oxidizes on them but there are some who do not experience that with the same exact product. But it does happen to any type - liquid, cream, powder, mineral/loose. Although it happens to liquid or cream foundations more often that it does on powder. And it also happens to BB creams.

How about for all brands?
- Each foundation is made up of different components regardless of the brand. Although some brands are notorious when it comes to this issue, the brand name does not guarantee that it won't happen, whether or not it is a high end or a drugstore brand.

Does my skin type have anything to do with my foundation oxidizing?
- While there are no scientific findings at the moment, there is a huge probability that one's skin type has something to do with foundations oxidizing. It commonly happens to those who have combination-oily and oily skin as oils are oxidative substance though there are rare occasions when those with normal-dry skin experience the same thing.

What causes foundations to oxidize:
- There is no single cause that can be considered as the culprit. It varies depending on the person wearing the foundation. But here are the most common reasons why people experience such:

     1. The skin's PH level or acidity - if you're acidic or if it is high, chances are you will experience such a reaction.
     2. How one's body chemistry + sebum reacts to components of the foundation. Same with perfumes - certain scent may smell heavenly on someone but smells pungent on you.
     3. If skin isn't properly moisturized or hydrated enough, the oil glands work double time to produce oils which can cause foundations to oxidize.
     4. Climate and temperature - some foundations are designed to withstand humidity no matter how insane it is and there are those that are suited for cooler climates. The oxygen in the air is another possible cause.
     5. Products applied on the skin before the foundation - sunblocks, toners, moisturizers, primers. Some components of your skin care products may react to a certain component of your foundation and vice versa.
     6. Using a shade that does not match your skin's undertone - using a pink-toned foundation when you have yellow undertones. Same goes with using a shade too yellow when you have pink undertones which make you look sick with hepatitis.
     7. Using makeup that is already on its death bed. The makeup composition changes when it's already expired so make sure that you are not using something that is way beyond its shelf life especially those in liquid/cream form. But I know that a lot of us do not follow the indicated or the "standard" shelf life and keep using them until they no longer look, smell, and feel right. When that happens, throw it in the bin right away. Not only will it oxidize, it might also harm your skin.
     8. A certain component of the foundation could also very well be the cause of such a reaction. Whatever that is, I have no idea.

How do I know if a foundation will oxidize on me?
- There is absolutely no other way to tell if a foundation will oxidize on you or not except when it already happens. If it does not oxidize on someone, that is no guarantee that it won't happen to you since each people have different skin types and PH level. The best that you can do is apply the foundation directly on your face and not anywhere else as the skin and "oiliness" and "acidity" on your face is different from those on your inner arm or back of your hand. Aside from learning if it will oxidize on you or not, it might also help you know if this product causes allergic reactions or not. Serves a double purpose. ;)

What can you do to keep your foundation from oxidizing?
- Before even buying, be absobloodylutely certain that the foundation matches your skin tone and undertone and that you have already tested it. But if you bought something on impulse without having tried it yet and later on find out that it makes you look like and Oompa Loompa (or perhaps The Annoying Orange), then you can only do so much to keep it from oxidizing. But here are a few of the things you can do to prevent this:

     1. Use a primer - it will serve as a barrier between the skin and the foundation, thus, preventing the sebum from interacting with the foundation. Most recommend using a silicone-based primer. But this trick does not work for everyone.
     2. Keep your skin hydrated and moisturized - if your skin is normal and balanced, only the right amount of oil will be produced and that means less oilies will say hello to your foundation.
     3. If you're using different skin care products, experiment. Try using a different moisturizer/sunblock/toner when you plan to use the foundation that oxidizes on you. You may find something that does not have that certain component that reacts with the foundation and it will thereby work for you.
     4. If you really love the foundation save for its oxidation, you can settle for a shade or two lighter. The moment it oxidizes, there is a big chance that it will finally match.
     5. If you want to use up the foundation that changes its color on you, you can use a lighter shade of powder foundation or pressed powder to set it.
     6. As shared by K - She is highly acidic and had her share of Oompa Loompa days so when she changed her diet and lifestyle, it helped. It could also work to those who are acidic - you'll never know until you try it.
     7. If you already have oily skin, you may want to steer clear of oil-based foundations as it could be a problem too.

That pretty much sums up everything I found out but I will update this entry when I read about something new. I hope this post helps.

Happy rainy Tuesday, everyone. :)

Cheers,
P.S. I know that this is the second time I have put off my Becca Boudoir Mineral Powder Foundation review but I will definitely be reviewing it on my next post.
Read more...

Monday, August 15, 2011

Some Kinda Birthday FOTD

Hello again. I hope you're all having a great start of the week. I'm having a good one so far and as the title suggests, I am a year older again. I celebrated it with a couple of friends and family, of course and I am so thankful for another year, another chapter in my life. Anyway, I would like to share my FOTD (or rather a half FOTD) for the day when I went out earlier. Well, there isn't anything special with this FOTD since I wear pretty much the same look everyday but I thought I'd just share anyway.



I really like this shot. Too bad it's blurred. Don't you just hate it when your favorite picture in the bunch is blurry? Happens all the time. :D


A clearer shot



Products I used:
- Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel
- YSL Matt Touch Oil Free Foundation
- Laura Mercier Secret Concealer
- Maybelline Dream Matte Powder
- Revlon Brow Fantasy Brunette
- Maybelline Gel Liner
- Max Factor False Lash Effect Mascara
- Shu Uemura Glow On P Pink 30
- Korres Lip Butter Glaze in Pomegranate
- Guerlain Kiss Kiss Stick Gloss in Corail Des Mers

Have a great week, everyone! :)

Cheers,
P.S. Thank you for all the greetings earlier on Facebook and Twitter. :)

Coming up: Becca Bodouir Mineral Powder Foundation Review
Read more...

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Product Review: Sigma Flat Top Synthetic Kabuki F80

On my most recent Current Favorites post, I included the Sigma Flat Top Synthetic Kabuki F80 on my list and this review will explain why it has become not just a current favorite, but a total favorite. Here is the 3rd installment for my brush reviews.



I got this brush, thanks to the affiliate program of Sigma Beauty.

Product Description taken from Sigma Beauty website:

This exclusive flat top synthetic kabuki was designed to deliver a flawless makeup application. The Sigma Makeup F80 is a buffer brush that can be used to blend powder or liquid products. The short and dense bristles make it easy to buff your liquid foundation. The long handle adds comfort to your makeup application. The synthetic fibers are ideal to be used with liquid products and can be easily cleaned. Made of Synthetic Sigmax HD filament.

********************************************************************************************

What I like:
- This is by far, the best brush I have used for cream/liquid foundations and bb creams. Unlike stippling brushes and regular foundation brushes, it applies the product more quickly while evenly distributing it on the face. You won't even see streaks at all and the result is a flawless face.
- Since I started using this, I noticed that I use less product. It's as if the skin absorbs the foundation and there won't be much product left on the bristles. Other brushes eat a lot of the product but not this one. Also keep i mind that with this brush, less is more.
- The bristles are dense and perfect for buffing which requires little effort to have an even application. It also glides on the skin so it does not involve any dragging and tugging. They are really soft and non-scratchy too.
- Buff it or stipple it, this brush does a great job.
- Does not irritate my skin at all.
- Does not bleed nor does it shed every time I wash it.
- The handle is just right - not too long and not too short. I get the right amount of control over this brush.
- Since the bristles are made of synthetic hair, I can be assured that no animals were harmed in the making of these brushes (I think I made it sound like a movie/tv disclaimer).
- Reasonably priced at $16.

What I don't like:
- Takes quite some time to dry.
- Not locally available but there are now local resellers. Great for those who do not have PayPal or credit/debit cards they can use to purchase this directly from the Sigma website or for those who live outside the US and hate the waiting game.

Overall rating: 4.75/5

Will I buy again? I would if there is a need to. I think this brush and I will have a long way to go before going our separate ways. But I want to try the F05 or the Small Contour Brush that looks like MAC 109. :)


Have you tried this brush?

Have a great week, everyone! :)

P.S. I was supposed to do a birthday giveaway for the Miss Taylor Kabuki but to my surprise, the rules have changed. I'll do my belated birthday giveaway soon.

Cheers,
Disclaimer: Product was received as an incentive for the Sigma Beauty Affiliate Program

Coming up: Becca Bodouir Mineral Powder Foundation Review
Read more...

Friday, August 12, 2011

Product Review: Alba Botanica Natural Acne Dote Oil Control Lotion

I prefer a short and fuss-free everyday routine when it comes to prepping myself up. That's why I skip primers and rely on moisturizers that also serve as a good makeup base while providing oil control. Luckily, I have found such products in Alba Botanica. This is the second moisturizer I have used (and is currently using) from this brand, the Rainforest Hydrating Oil Control Moisturizer being the first. I liked the latter a lot but to know  if I also like this one, please read the rest of this post for my review. :)


Product Description taken from the Alba Botanica website:

Oil Control Lotion with max-strength 2% Salicylic Acid

Signature ingredient: Willow Bark Extract, a natural source of Salicylic Acid, helps treat and prevent acne.
Parsley and Lemon Balm Extracts deeply cleanse and act as a natural oil blotter.
Organic Green Tea Extract helps reduce redness and soothe and calm irritated or inflamed skin.

Product description: Weightless moisturizer helps maintain an all-day matte finish.* This light, oil-control moisturizer naturally treats and helps prevent acne while complexion maintains a shine-free appearance all day*.

Features and benefits: Formulated with maximum strength 2% Salicylic Acid, Natural ACNEdote Oil Control Lotion features a powerfully natural, botanically effective formula that weightlessly hydrates skin as needed but keeps oil at bay for an all-day matte finish*. You’ll see a visibly clearer complexion with skin that’s touchably soft and never tight, dry or greasy.

Who should use this product? For oily or acne-prone skin types.

Directions for use: Apply with a cotton ball to freshly cleansed face morning and evening.

Size: 2 oz / 57 g

Price: $14.95

******************************************************************************************

What I like:
- Feels cool on the face, a little refreshing too due to its being a bit mentholated.
- Dries to a not so matte finish but helps keep oil at bay. Face won't be matte all day but it works for at least 4 hours without touching up.
- Smells kinds of medicinal and mentholated. I actually like it.
- Does not break me out. No allergic reactions either.
- Keeps my face moisturized, soft, and smooth all day.
- Has a shelf life of 18 months so yes, you can stray a bit. Just don't forget to store it in a cool place or in your fridge, perhaps. :D
- Packaging is hygienic since it's a squeeze out tube which gives you control on the amount of product you can get.
- Locally available at Healthy Options and inexpensive for less than Php 500.

What I don't like:
- Can be a bit greasy especially on really hot days.
- No SPF nor does it offer any sun protection.

Overall rating: 4/5 I recommend this to those who have combination-oily to oily skin who live in places with cooler climates.

Will I buy again? In as much as I like this, I might not for now. I find that water-based moisturizers such as Clinique Moisture Surge Extended Thirst Relief, Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel, and Celeteque Facial Moisturizer (for an inexpensive one) work better for me both as moisturizers (that hydrates the skin too) and as makeup base.

Have you tried this or any other products from Alba Botanica?

Happy Friday, everyone! :P

Cheers,
Coming up: Sigma F80 Brush Review
Read more...

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Product Review: MAC 188 Small Duo Fibre Face Brush

Here's my second installment on my brush reviews. I will be alternating between makeup/skin care reviews and brush reviews so it won't be all about brushes for my succeeding posts. Anyway, I've had this MAC 188 Small Duo Fibre Face Brush for almost two years now so I thought of giving it its much-deserved review. I initially purchased it last October 2009 during the height of my blush addiction for the sole purpose of using this on my blushes. But I found another use where this brush is excellent at and I'll share that on this review.





Description from MAC Cosmetics Website:

A flat-topped, full circular brush used for lightweight application and blending of any formula colour – fluid, cream, powder or pigment. Ideal for creating soft layers or adding textures. Made from a soft blend of goat and synthetic fibres.

17 cm
US$34.00

********************************************************************************************

What I like:
- This works great in applying cream and/or highly pigmented blushes because it gets just the right amount of color and distributes it evenly on the cheeks.
- I like using this in blending my under eye concealer when I use something creamy like Laura Mercier Secret Concealer. It works so much better than my ring finger because it blends it better by swirling it around the eye area and that prevents the product from caking up (this is the other use I am talking about on the intro of this post. I use it more on concealers than I do on blushes).
- When used in applying cream or liquid foundations, it works great on the crevices like the sides of the nose, near the ears, and around the eyes and forehead as compared to MAC 187 due to its size (significantly smaller than 187 - see pictures below). If you plan to apply foundation using the stippling motion, it will take you a while if you use this on your entire face so I suggest leaving it to the 187 brush to do that and use this 188 on hard to reach areas instead. But if you're just going to buff it in, this brush will do.
- This applies highlighters and contouring products like a dream, its size is perfect.
- If you want to apply your eye creams without tugging on the under eyes, you may very well use this brush too.
- I experienced minimal shedding and it never bled every single time I wash it and it does not take long to dry.
- Locally available at MAC Counters and part of the permanent line.

What I don't like:
- Quite pricey for a single brush at Php 2050. Those on a budget may want to consider the Adorned with Grace Minerals Ingenue Dual Fiber Brush since the size is almost the same and works just as fine as the 188. But it sheds like crazy.
- I wouldn't use this on uber pigmented blushes and foundations and cheek tints because the white hairs might get stained just like what happened to my 187. :(
- The black goat hairs can be quite scratchy so make sure only the white hair touches your skin.

Overall rating: 4.5/5 Despite the price, the versatility of this brush got me - from eye creams to concealers to foundations, blushes, highlighters and bronzers. However, I don't think this is a must-have for everyone. If you already have brushes for different products, you can do away without this. :)

Will I buy again? I hope I won't have to since I take care of this brush but in case something unexpected and unfortunate happens to it, I will. :)

A closer look

Compared with MAC 187 size-wise


Do you have this brush?

Happy Wednesday, everyone! :)

Cheers,
Coming up: Alba Botanica Acne Dote Oil Control Lotion Review

Read more...

Monday, August 8, 2011

Product Review: Guerlain Blush 4 Eclats in 05 Rose Plein Vent

After 4 months of being unable to use this blush I purchased last January, I was able to finally muster up all the courage I can get to use it last May. Yes, it remained unused and untouched for a good 4 months as I didn't have the heart to ruin the design and get all the 4 colours mixed together. But I knew at one point that I have to use it so I finally did and here's my review. :)




The shade is 05 Rose Plein Vent and as you can see, this blush compact contains 9g of gorgeousness in a pan.





What I like:
- It has 4 shades in the pan so you can sort of customize the outcome of the blush on your cheeks. If I want to use them individually, I use my MAC 188 because the bristles are small enough to fit each portion. 
- When swirled altogether, it's a golden peach-pink shade that is very sublime. Simply gorgeous!
- The packaging is divine and eye-catching because of the "gold" compact. Very regal.
- Texture is incredibly amazing. Extremely soft and buttery, very finely milled.
- Has very fine shimmers that give the cheeks a nice glow.
- Staying power is considerably decent - at least 4 hours on my cheeks (shorter on really hot days though).
- Does not cause me to break out nor has it caused any allergic reaction.
- The brush that comes with it is useful and quite soft.
- Comes with a protective pouch that protects the compact from accumulating a lot of dust.
- Locally available at Rustan's.

What I don't like:
- The compact is a fingerprint and dust magnet and needs cleaning every once in a while so it won't look repulsive.
- The scent is overwhelming! I've always had this problem with Guerlain products.
- Expensive at Php 2450 but I got this during the holiday sale January this year and paid Php 1960 instead after slashing 20% off the retail price.
- Oxidizes a bit on me when I use certain foundations which is a real bummer. :(

Overall rating: 4/5

Will I buy again? No, as I'm sure this will definitely last me a really long time and the scent is just more than what my sense of smell can take. But if they make Serie Noire permanent or release something that looks like it or hopefully something prettier, I would probably buy another blush from Guerlain. :)

A closer look

Swatch

Have you tried Guerlain blushes? How's the scent? :P

Have a great week, everyone. Happy Monday! :)

Cheers,

Coming up: MAC 188 Brush Review
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