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Thursday, November 21, 2013

In the Limelight: Benefit Hello Flawless Oxygen Wow Brightening Makeup in I'm Pure 4 Sure Ivory Product Review

Wow, that was quite a long name for a foundation; makes me wonder why companies do that, actually. Anyway, I am not a huge fan of Benefit products, to be honest, though I have tried quite a few - blushes, tints, primer. I wasn't even one of the eager beavers when Benefit launched this foundation but the reviews about it being light and natural on the skin made me decide to finally try it out this year as I was looking for a foundation that is lighter than NARS Sheer Glow (although I was kinda okay with that foundation, y'know). I have had this Hello Flawless Oxygen Wow Brightening Makeup for a couple of months now and the shade I have is I'm Pure 4 Sure Ivory. I'm not sure if this is the lightest or the second lightest shade but I decided this was the perfect shade for me, knowing that this will be a tad light for my complexion, because I am acidic and almost everything oxidizes on me, which I'm sure you know as I have been complaining a lot about it lately. So on this post, I shall be reviewing this foundation and I will be using my new system of reviewing for the first time on this product. I thought a little revamping won't hurt as to how I do my reviews so here goes.



Why we love it!
Hello...it's flawless time! Our new oil-free brightening liquid foundation builds from light to medium coverage for a natural complexion you can believe in. It's you...just more luminous & healthy looking.

Find your flawless match with the hello flawless oxygen wow shade guide in Beauty School.

WHAT ELSE YOU NEED TO KNOW:

broad-spectrum SPF 25 PA+++ protection**
oil-free formula
natural finish
hydrating benefits
light-diffusing properties
 available in 9 shades

**What does PA+++ mean? SPF stands for the protection grade of the UVB filter. PA stands for the protection grade of the UVA filter. The highest standard of sun protection rating is the three-star PA rating. Our foundation has three stars, which translates to the highest protection.
Who else loves it!
2012 SELF Healthy Beauty Award, best brightening foundation

How to apply
Blend on face with brush or fingertips.

Details
30.0 mL, 1.0 US fl oz.

Beauty tip

Start with the POREfessional to get an unbelievably even application, quickly minimize the appearance of pores and help makeup stay put.



What I say about this product...

Texture & Consistency: 

This foundation is kinda watery though not excessively runny. Despite its consistency, this feels surprisingly creamy as I spread this all over my skin. It also feels moist which is good for those who dig the dewy look.

Coverage:

Light to medium but can be built up, only adding a little amount on areas that need more coverage.

Longevity:

It lasts for a few hours to a little over half a day. This could be due to my skin type which is combination-oily and add to that the heat and humidity in Manila. Those who have combination or oily skin may not expect this to last until you remove your makeup before hitting the sack, while those with dry to normal may find this to last longer on them.

Price & Availability in the local market:

This is locally available at Benefit counters and stores in Manila for Php 1,900.00.

Thumbs up:
  • Definitely feels lighter than NARS Sheer Glow and is perfect for everyday use.
  • Has not caused irritation on my skin, no break outs either.
  • This shade initially applies lighter on my skin tone but I was right when I decided that this is the right shade for me because it does oxidize and ends up matching my skin tone.
  • It definitely brightens up my face.
  • Perfect for the dewy look. It makes my skin look bouncy, softer and smoother though it does not blur the imperfections or blemishes.
  • It has SPF25.
  • It does not dry out my skin and it actually makes me feel like my skin can breathe.
  • It blends well with the skin and does not sit on top of it; definitely does not feel like I have a mask on.
  • The pump! On my last two foundation reviews, I sorta complained about those not having pumps. And yes, this one does have a pump that actually works and allows me to have control on how much product I get to use.
  • The packaging, while not super stylish, is practical. You can actually see how much product you have left. Plus, when you run out of it, you can re-use the bottle and put lotions or creams in it, perhaps another foundation that does not come with a pump.
  • Locally available.

Thumbs down:
  • It takes a minute or two to dry as it really is moist. So I refrain from using this when I am running late but when I have the extra time to spare, I don't see a reason why I shouldn't use this.
  • Can be quite pricey with Benefit being a mid-range brand but priced competitively against high end foundations but I find the price worth it because of everything listed on "Thumbs up".

Who might like this?

Those who prefer light-medium coverage and likes the dewy look. Those who have dry to normal skin might find this suitable for their skin type.

Who might not?

Those who prefer matte or satin finishes. Combination-oily skin types.

Overall Rating: 4.5/5


Wearing Benefit Hello Flawless Oxygen Wow

Have you tried Benefit Hello Flawless Oxygen Wow Makeup?

Have a wonderful Thursday, everyone! :)

Cheers,
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Friday, November 15, 2013

In the Limelight: Sleek Gloss Me Colour Intense Supreme Shine Lip Gloss in 442 Fool's Gold Product Review

TGIF, everyone! The problem if you go on blogging hiatus is that the products you have to review piles up and when you finally get back to it, it can be confusing which one to review first and which one goes next. Making a list doesn't work for me. But today, I decided to review another lip product from Sleek Makeup and that is the Gloss Me Colour Intense Supreme Shine Lip Gloss in 442 Fool's Gold. I admit, I was initially hesitant to use this as it is not something that would catch my attention when it comes to lip products. I am normally a coral-pink lippy girl and just starting to get a little bolder with red. But after giving this gloss a chance and used it several times, I'm ready to give it a review.



Sleek Makeup describes Gloss Me Fool's Gold as...

Gloss Me provides you with maximum coverage for long lasting colour with shimmer that ensures a dazzling pout all day long. Fools Gold is a sparkling champagne shade that can be worn alone for a light neutral lip or team with True Colour Lipstick in Succumb for a dazzling pout.

Gloss Me’s ultra intense, long lasting colour doesn’t stray, drenching lips in a full coat of gloss in just one single application.






What I like:

  • Highly pigmented. One coat is enough to show its true color.
  • Sleek nailed it with the shade description. It is indeed a sparkling champagne shade. It is pretty and would look good on bold eye colours or a smokey eye with mostly matte shades.
  • It does not feel super sticky but I feel that it adheres on the lips.
  • Does not dry out my lips.
  • There is a scent to it which can be detected only if you sniff closely to the tube. Almost goes undetected.
  • I like the packaging which is a simple clear tube with matte cap.
  • No irritation on my lips and the surrounding skin.
  • Can be used on top of a matte lip product to add more ooomph to it.
  • Has a shelf life of 36 months or 3 years.
  • Locally available at www.beautycornerph.com for Php 450.00 / 6mL of product.

What I don't like:
  • It tends to look frosty because of the abundance of shimmers in it which might not look too good on those with pouty or full lips as it will further make the lips fuller. Those with think lips might benefit from it though, if shimmers or frost are your thing.

Overall rating: 4/5 The gloss is nice but the shimmers' a little too much for me. Though I would certainly use this when I go for black smokey eyes. I think that combination will look dazzling.

Will I buy again? I actually like the gloss, and that is from someone who prefers tinted lip balms and sheer lipsticks over gloss, but I'd probably go for a different shade - Kiss & Tell.

Swatch - one swipe

On me. Wearing Benefit Hello Flawless Oxygen Wow I'm Pure for Sure Ivory;
Garnier BB Eye Roll On; Chanel Poudre Universelle Libre; MAC Browset
Beguile; Essence Stay All Day Eyeshadow Glammy Goes To; Urban Decay
24/7 Glide On Eye Pencil Zero; Kiss Me Heroine Make Impact Frame and
Curl Mascara; Too Faced Chocolate Soleil Matte Bronzing Powder;
Sleek Gloss Me Fool's Gold

Have you tried Sleek Gloss Me?

Have a wonderful Friday, everyone!

Cheers,

Disclaimer: Product received for review purposes but does not in any way affect my opinion on the said product.
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Friday, November 8, 2013

In the Limelight: Revlon Nearly Naked Foundation in 120 Vanilla Product Review

As I have mentioned on my NARS Sheer Glow Foundation review, I prefer sheer-light coverage foundations that also feel light on the skin. Admittedly, I was never a fan of Revlon's foundations. When I was able to try the Colorstay foundation a couple of years ago, I found it a little too strong for my skin and felt like my skin couldn't breathe. Now that there are newer foundations made available in the Philippine market, I was seeing reviews of the Nearly Naked and the Colorstay Whipped Creme here and there and I was on the hunt for a new foundation. It has been a long time since I have used a foundation from a drugstore brand so I thought it wouldn't hurt to try again. I was deciding between the two but the word "Naked" won me over as it gave me the impression that it would look and feel like second skin, which is exactly what I want in a foundation. So I purchased a bottle online as it is so much cheaper compared to mall prices and used it for a while. Here is my review.



 Revlon describes Nearly Naked as...

Makeup so refreshingly light, it melts right in, creating a fresh even look. So the only one that knows you are wearing makeup is you. Blends seamlessly, buildable coverage.

What I like:
  • Compared to Colorstay, it is definitely lighter. 
  • Consistency is not too thick. It is a bit watery but does not take too long to dry on the skin and it is not even that hard to blend at all.
  • Although it is not totally unscented, I was able to detect some scent but it's not too strong and overwhelming.
  • It is has a nice matte finish that does not look flat. I have to say it looks nice on the skin too.
  • The formulation isn't quite as strong as Colorstay.
  • No breakouts, no irritation on my skin.
  • I do not get greasy on this foundation but looks rather dewy which is nice.
  • Locally available at Revlon counters on most department stores and some drugstores nationwide. I am not sure of the price as I got mine online but it is probably twice its USD price.
  • The packaging is quite nice - foundation housed in a sleek glass bottle with a white cap. Nothing too fancy but it does the job.

What I don't like:
  • Although lighter that Colorstay, this still feels a little heavy for me. Me and my freakin' preference.
  • Those with acne and blemishes might still need to use concealer depending on the severity of the blemishes. Personally though, I do not conceal and cover my blemishes but I still needed to use concealer on my undereyes.
  • Does not come with a pump. So I just transferred some on an airless pump bottle from Beabi.
  • It turns a little peach on me when it oxidizes. I got the shade Vanilla thinking that once it oxidizes, it will eventually match. It almost did, only it was a little too peach.\
  • For some reason, I still feel like I have a very thin mask on my face. I don't feel like my skin could breathe.

Overall rating: 3/5 Turning peach was the deal breaker for me. Plus it still feels a little heavy for me despite being described as refreshingly light.

Will I buy again? No. It's still not as light as I prefer my foundations to be.



Have you tried the Revlon Nearly Naked foundation?

Cheers,
P.S. Stay safe, everyone!
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Sunday, November 3, 2013

In the Limelight: NARS Sheer Glow Foundation in Fiji Product Review

I've only known NARS for their blushes but I have never tried any of their foundations before. Even though I've read good reviews about their Sheer Matte and Sheer Glow Foundations, I was very happy with my foundations from Japanese brands that I never bothered trying them out. I received a sample of NARS Sheer Matte before but I thought there wasn't anything fantastic about it and went about my business. It was only July this year that I was able to get myself a full size of the NARS Sheer Glow when I was running out of liquid foundations. And here is my review.



NARS describes Sheer Glow as...

A glowing, natural radiant finish foundation with sheer and buildable coverage that immaculately evens skin tone. Replete with skincare benefits and the NARS Complexion Brightening Formula, it leaves skin hydrated, more luminous, softer and smoother. Used daily, Sheer Glow Foundation improves the skin’s brightness and texture

  • For normal, normal-to-dry, dry skin types
  • Hydrates for softer and smoother skin
  • Contains powerful anti-oxidants to protect against damaging free radicals and turmeric extract to improve skin's radiance and tone
  • Dermatologist-tested. Non-comedogenic. Fragrance-free.



What I like:
  • Although this foundation is marketed as for those with normal, normal-to-dry, and dry skin types which my skin is not, I found that this works great for my skin despite being combination-oily. It does not make my skin feel greasy at all although oiling up is something that does not surprise me. I'm used to it.
  • Provides medium coverage with a satin finish. Although I would normally go for foundations with sheer-light coverage, I am able to sheer this out by mixing it with my daily moisturizer, otherwise, it will feel a tad heavy for my liking.
  • This is buildable so for those who prefer full coverage, you might get your desired coverage through layering. I think two layers would give you that coverage. Anything beyond that might give you a cakey finish.
  • The packaging is really nice and sleek. The foundation is housed in a sturdy glass bottle with the NARS logo on it. The cap, though, is matte black which is really part of their signature packaging. I am not a fan of it; just saying.
  • The foundation is indeed fragrance-free, much to my nose's delight.
  • I have never experienced any skin irritation not break outs from this foundation despite this being a little too rich for my skin - but that's just me.
  • A little goes a long way. I only need one pump to cover my face and neck.
  • This is easy to spread and blend on the skin.
  • The consistency is creamy and not watery nor runny as compared to Urban Decay Naked Skin Weightless Ultra Definition Liquid Makeup which is a current favorite of mine. It doesn't droop as quick as the latter does.
  • When I start to oil up, particularly on my t-zone, it does not make me look like a grease ball. It makes my skin look rather dewy which is nice. Nothing that a touch up powder or an oil blotting sheer cannot solve.
  • My skin never felt dry which is good. I never saw any dry patches so I guess those with dry skins with patches would really benefit from this foundation as it is non-drying.
  • Lasts for more than half a day.
  • Locally available at NARS counters in Rustan's for Php 2,450 per bottle.

What I don't like:
  • First off, this does not come with a pump. Not even a spatula or a dropper or whatever. Not that I have seen any foundation that comes with a dropper but you get my drift. For that price, it would have been nice if a pump was included and didn't have to be purchased separately for Php 400 bucks. I just bought an empty airless pump bottle from Beabi and transferred some in it.
  • The shade I have is Fiji which I thought is right for my skin tone. I am NC25 in MAC and those who wear NC20 are usually matched to Deauville, which is the shade that comes before Fiji. Now after seeing swatches of Ceylan, I wondered why it looks lighter than Fiji. Anyway, this oxidizes on me too so it ends up looking darker than it already is. It was a tad darker upon application but after oxidizing, it becomes really darker.
  • It feels heavy for me though much lighter than, say, Estee Lauder Double Wear and the Light version. As I already mentioned on this post, I prefer sheer-light coverage.
  • It transfers even though I've already set it with loose or pressed powder!
  • The bottle is kinda heavy so it is not entirely ideal for travelling.

Overall rating: 3.75/5. The pump is rather a minor issue; I should've researched a bit more about the shades and swatched the shades prior to purchasing online; the coverage is more of a personal preference, and the bittle is another minor issue. The transfer issue is more "serious" to ponder on though. 

Will I buy again? I'd have to say no. In as much as I really liked this foundation, I really prefer foundations that give lighter coverage and feels like second skin as if I'm not wearing it on my face at all.


Have you tried this foundation? How do you find it?

Cheers,

Read more...

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Let's Have a Little Talk About Acne

Who has never had acne in their entire lives? In as much as I want to raise my hand and say I've never had one, I can't do that. Although I consider myself having pretty good skin, I still get bumps and zits every now and then especially when I am stressed, when I have tried a product that does not work well with my skin, or when I get the raging hormones time of the month. A lot of teenagers and even adults are battling with acne and it is something that I believe is one of the reasons why certain people are not confident about their looks, thus, the low self-esteem. I am not a skin expert and neither am I a dermatologist but as most of you may not know, I am always on the look out for products that can help me with the zits I get on certain occasions so I would like to share some of these info to you guys.

Concealer and pimple dots made for healing zits on my face

Before you look for treatments for your breakouts, it is important to determine the cause why your skin is having such problems. Sometimes, just a change of habit works. Here are a few of the most common causes of breakouts aside from the usual known causes (stress, anxiety, period) unbeknownst to some of us:

1. The things we put on our face. 

Do you have a complex beauty routine or do you only use a couple of products on your skin? It doesn't matter. Some of our skin care products and makeups are the actual culprit as to why we get acne. Just imagine piling on layers of products on your face - toner, serum/moisturizer, primer or makeup base, liquid foundation or bb cream, setting powder or powder foundation, then a setting spray. Do you think your skin can breathe freely? And most importantly, are you sure you are washing off everything when you cleanse your face? Even if we have a very simple routine like cleanse-tone-moisturize-foundation, some of these products could still clog our pores that could result to zits. Aside from that, our cosmetic sponges and brushes have bacteria from leftover makeup and oils that can be transferred onto the skin if not cleaned regularly. These acne that are caused by these topical products are what is being referred to as Acne Cosmetica. That's new to me but it's nice to learn that there is a specific term for acne caused by skin care and cosmetics.

2. Have you ever gotten an advice from people to use toothpaste to treat your pimple? 

For some, it might have worked but some of the ingredients on our toothpaste can be quite harsh on the skin that instead of treating it, it will just aggravate your pimple.

3. Do you spend all day talking on your cellphone or simply holding it and not letting it free from your grasp?

Whenever our hands touch something, we get bacteria and dirt and that gets transferred on the surface of our mobile phones And then we touch our face. Wiping it clean with a wet tissue or antibacterial wipes will in a way lessen its dirt.

4. Work out tools and materials. 

Gyms and yoga classes are public and people share those gears and mats with each other. So just imagine all the sweat and dirt these things have accumulated from all of those who have used them before you and you get a lot of those on your hands, arms, feet, you put your towel on top of those and then you wipe your face. Ack! I know, right? An alcohol or cleansing tissues would do you a lot of good. Or if you can keep your towel inside your bag and just bring it out when you need it, I think that's a pretty good option.

5. The most common thing I have mentioned here is touching your face. 

I think this is pretty self-explanatory and I believe a lot of people already know this but I think it's worth mentioning. You touch a lot of things with your hands and they get all the dirt. And then you touch your face with it. A hand sanitizer will surely come in handy if you can't find a washroom to wash your hands first if you can't keep them from touching your face.

6. The food we eat.

What we eat and our diet reflects on our skin. So cut down on too much greasy and fatty food.

7. Water intake.

Drink lots of water. Aside from being good for digestion, it also helps hydrate us, making our skin healthier and better.

8. Prescription Medicine.

Pills for female hormones and steroids are notorious when it comes to causing pimples. There could be other medicines so you might want to ask your doctor about it as he prescribes those medicines to you so you'll know what to expect.

9. Other more serious health and skin conditions such as rosacea, hormonal imbalance and PCOS so it is always best to consult your doctor about it especially if none of the over the counter and natural treatments help.

Now, speaking of treatments, you can do some DIYs as a lot of the ingredients can be found in your kitchen. These are mostly inexpensive and natural too. You can make face masks out of honey, milk, apple cider vinegar, brown sugar, turmeric, green tea, oatmeal, cinnamon. 

I personally like mixing brown sugar with milk or oatmeal and honey to exfoliate my skin. For spot treatments, I use apple cider vinegar alone and dot it on the pimple/s and I wake up to a dry pimple. You can mix some of those ingredients I have mentioned and there are a lot of recipes for DIY natural masks you can find online.

This is kind of a lengthy post but it's nice to share some important information especially when it comes to taking care of our skin.

Here's also a little video that might prove insightful and helpful.

Do you have natural treatments that you can share?

Cheers,


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Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Guest Post: My Current 5 Favorite Blushes by Anamika of WiseShe.com

Hello from India!

I am Anamika and I love how blushes sculpt and enlighten the complexion They add glow to the face and makes me look alive.I  keep hoarding lot of blushes and have wide variety of shade.


I keep trying blushes from drugstore to high end and have favorite in all of them. I am listing down few of my favorite blushes which I got recently.Hope you like them J


1. NARS Taj Mahal Blush


This is by far my favourite nars blush.It’s a beautiful scorched orange gold bronzy shade which adds lot of warmth and brightness. I like to wear it during fall especially during the night.We Indians celeberate lot of festivals where there is lot of glam and glitter and whenever I wear Nars Taj people ask me what’s on my cheeks.Only thing which needs to be taken care of is that one should use it with a light hand otherwise you will end up looking like a clown.

2. Milani Baked Blush in Corallina


I love Corallina because of the beautiful coral glow it gives me It has a slight shimmer in it but it will never looks too much If you are not a shimmery blush person then you need to try this out you will end up trying few more shimmery blushes for yourself.

3. MAC Mineralize Skin Finish Star Wonder



It is a plumy pink color with hints of gold shimmer. It isn’t glittery like other mineral makeup that MAC offers, which is why I like it so much. Wearing each of the three shades separately also gives your cheeks a different flush of color

5. Wet n Wild Pearlescent Pink


Blush reminded me of Nars Orgasm. It’s a rosy pink blush with a bit of coral into it and very fine golden shimmer. Shimmer in the blush is very very fine and will not make you look like a disco ball unlike many drugstore blushes around.I used  MAC 188 Small duo fibre face brush  or Coastal Scents Classic Blush Brush to apply it .As glitter in this blush is not overpowering it looks very flattering .Also, this blush will be best for warm skin tone girls.

5. L'Oreal Color Lift Blush Pink Lift Rose


Blush as per its name gives natural glow to the skin and kind of “lift “up as claimed. I especially like to wear it at night because when the lights falls on it it makes one look like a glowing bulb – in a good way of course. By the way this too looks like a good dupe of Nars orgasm ..I have lost the count of  the products which looks like Nars Orgasm.Also, along with this its a good dupe of MAC Star Wonder Mineralize Skinfinish.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR – Anamika is a makeup and beauty blogger who loves smokey eyes and blushes. When free she likes to surf around, listen to music and read some suspense thrillers. J
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Friday, October 25, 2013

In the Limelight: MAC Mineralize Blush in Dainty Product Review

Most of my blushes have matte or satin finishes and I only have a handful of shimmery blushes. As I get older, I prefer non-shimmery ones because they tend to look more natural. But certain shimmery blushes have such gorgeous finishes like the MAC Mineralize Blush in Dainty. After using it for a few months now, here's my review.




MAC describes their Mineralize Blushes as...

Baked minerals refined into a powder formula to provide exceptionally sheer and lightweight application. Colour builds lightly, layer after layer, without heavy coverage. Veils and enhances the cheekbones with a luminous, pearlized shimmer.



What I like:
  • MAC describes it as light yellow pink with gold pearl. Dainty in my eyes is a gorgeous warm pink shade with hints of peach and coral that is made even more lovely by the find, iridescent gold shimmers. It may be too shimmery on the pan and on swatches but if applied sparingly, the shimmers will just give your cheeks a nice glow and sheen. I personally use non-synthetic brushes or the MAC 187 when I apply this. I noticed that using my Ecotools blush brush makes the shimmers look more prominent whereas using those brushes I mentioned earlier makes the color pop.
  • It isn't the silkiest and most finely milled and velvety blush I have owned but the texture is still smooth and not chunky.
  • Unscented. My two most used powder blushes together with this one is Burberry Light Glow Blush in Peony and Chanel Joues Contraste in Narcisse, both of which have floral scents to them. So my nose loves the fact that this blush is unscented.
  • A little goes a long way. This is pigmented so apply sparingly using a light hand. Just lightly dust it on your cheeks and continuously blend.
  • No skin irritation nor allergic reactions for me from using it.
  • Staying power is good, stays for more 5-6 hours on my combination-oily skin.
  • Locally available at MAC counters for Php 1,500.00 (feel free to update me if the price has increased).

What I don't like:
  • It oxidizes on me as most products do. But it doesn't end up looking awful even though it has oxidized. 
  • Can emphasize the pores especially for those with large ones.

Overall rating: 4.5/5

Will I buy again? The shade is pretty dupe-able so I'm on the fence if I should repurchase. But I'm sure it will take years to finish so I have a lot of time in my hands to decide if I'll buy again or not.




Have you tried MAC Dainty? What's your favorite MAC blush?

Have a wonderful Friday, everyone!

Cheers,

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Oh My Face Looks Like a Map! On Blotchy Skin - Causes and Remedies

Have you ever looked in front of a mirror and notice how your skin looks uneven, with patches that appear red or brown? No, you don't have to just be a woman to see these on your skin. You can be a man or a woman, young or adult. These patches or blotches do not come with age alone. A lot of different factors can cause these to appear on your skin. If you are someone who has been dealing with these skin problems, continue reading the rest of this post as you might find something that can help you.


Okay, okay, I know that photo of me looks exaggerated but there are certain people in this world who are battling with such patches and blotches on their skin and that isn't even a funny thought. To some, having such skin problems may even cause lack of confidence and low self-esteem. Good thing is there are natural remedies for these conditions without even having to go under the knife and those painful cosmetic procedures (injection with huge needle alert!). But before we go ahead and tackle these natural remedies, let's discuss and educate ourselves a little with these blotches, shall we?

What is blotchy skin?

These are discolorations or pigmentation on the skin that appears like brown or red patches or blotches (hello, freckles!) on the skin caused by several factors such as skin damage due to excessive sun exposure without wearing proper sunscreen, rosacea, dermatitis, allergies, hormonal changes, acne, too much stress and anxiety, aging, intake of certain medications, and even genetic predisposition to name a few.

What can cause blotchy skin?

Here are some common and known causes of blotchy skin.
  • Are you expecting a baby and so excited about motherhood? Aside from a baby, you can also expect hormonal changes during pregnancy. This is one of the factors that may cause you to have blotchy skin. Although not everyone experiences this which is really good, there are a few women who are dealing with this at this very moment. Imagine all the emotional roller coaster a pregnant woman has to go through and add the horror of seeing these discolorations and pigmentation on her skin. Not a very pretty thing to experience, right?
  • I must admit that I am guilty of not religiously using sunscreen or sun protection and I take a huge risk exposing myself to the harmful rays of the sun. I have seen an increase on my freckles and sunspots on my arms, shoulders, and some on my cheeks. Freckles are cute on kids but not on adults so don't be like me and wear sunscreen whenever you have to go out or even inside the comforts of your own home as the lights on your ceiling also need some protection from. 
  • Your boss sets a target unrealistically high, your co-worker stole your idea and presented it as her own, you got several Fs on your report card, your baby is crying non-stop and your husband won't even take shifts with you, and the pizza parlor delivered pepperoni when you wanted all the works on your pizza. Aren't all these stressful? Believe it or not, stress and anxiety can even cause all those bumps and blotches to appear on your skin. Acne is a classic example. When I get anxious over something, I get a nasty zit or two.
  • I have atopic dermatitis and allergies so I easily get rashes on the affected area. Sometimes, just leaning on a table can cause these to appear on my arms. It's difficult but I have both medical and natural remedies for that.
  • We all age, don't we? Unless you have found the Fountain of Youth (by all means, spill the beans!), you will age too. And sometimes, seeing age spots is inevitable so at a young age, go find skin care products that work for you. You might not see the effects right away but give it 30-40 years and you will be thankful you heeded my advice.

I can go on and on about what causes all these and if I do, it will probably take you an hour to finish reading so let's just skip to the natural remedies which is brilliant because you can find most of these in your kitchen.

  • Who loves oatmeal? I do! Simply mix oatmeal with olive oil honey, or milk til you make a paste. All these ingredients have natural soothing properties. 
  • I love yogurt especially mango-flavored ones but this time, let's use unflavored and plain ol' yogurt. All you have to do is apply it on your face and that's an instant yogurt mask. The say it's good for the tummy. What they fail to mention is that it's also good for your skin.
  • Green tea. I can't think of anyone who hasn't heard of green tea as a natural remedy for acne and skin irritation. Make a green tea mask by adding rice flour on it until a paste is formed.
  • Bananas. This is perfect especially for those who have dry skin. Mash a ripe banana and add olive or almond oil, lemon juice, egg yolk, and voila! You got yourself a banana mask. BUT be sure that you are not allergic to nuts before you add almond oil as it will just worsen your skin problem.
  • Unrefined cocoa or shea butter. This is my personal favorite as it works quickly and the irritation is gone in just a few minutes. This is what I apply whenever my allergies flare up.
  • Aloe vera gel. This is one of the most popular natural remedies for inflammation and skin irritation. Just be sure you don't get too much from your mom's plant, okay?
  • Egg white. You can mix this with oatmeal or use it alone. I especially use this when I get burn marks from cooking. I continuously apply it on the burned part and like magic, it doesn't hurt and I no longer get blisters. BUT make sure you're not allergic to poultry.
  • Lemon juice. I see this all the time when it's all about getting rid of hyper-pigmentation and dark spots. So it must really work. Just make sure you don't apply a little too much as it might inflame the skin even more because lemon juice is about 5-6% citric acid.

These are just some of the natural remedies that can be commonly found at home, perhaps the unrefined cocoa or shea butter an exception. But all these have been proven to work at some point all these years. Of course, taking care of your skin and body is the best preventive medicine from all these. Derma visits are a lot of times needed depending on the severity of the skin condition.

So do you have other natural remedies or insights on blotchy skin?

TGIF, everyone!

Cheers,



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Thursday, October 24, 2013

In the Limelight: Island Basics Sunshield Spray SPF 45+ All Natural Sunscreen Product Review

I admit, I have never been religiously using sunscreen for the past 29 years of my life even though I came to know the importance of using one for the skin. I have tried a few but for some reason, my face gets red just a couple of minutes upon application. Plus, my skin easily gets oily greasy especially with the Manila heat and humidity. The greasy part, I can easily just use a touch up powder but the redness it causes, that's something that has been baffling me for a while now. Applied sheerly, it still gets red and I sometimes even experience prickly heat especially when I'm under the sun. So I just skipped using sunscreen overall and relied heavily on makeup and skin care that offers some protection only to a certain extent even though I am certain that that isn't enough. When Soie Lisse sent me one of their packages, the Island Basics Sunshield Spray was included.. Of course, I was hesitant to use it given my history with sunscreens but what the heck, I still gave it a try. And after using it for 3 months now, I am ready to give it a review.



What I like:

  • The texture. It isn't think like most sunscreens that I know of (except the one from Sunplay which is watery). It is runny though still creamy.
  • The nozzle spray is a nice touch. It dispenses just the right amount I need as I have control over how much product I will spray from it.
  • As I have atopic dermatitis and my skin is dry, I use Palmer's Cocoa Butter because it helps so that's something I can't just skip. What I do is spray a generous amount on my palm and mix it with a dollop of Palmer's and apply it all over my arms, legs, feet, and ears. Yes, my ears get itchy too.
  • On my face, I mix a little with my facial moisturizer so it can be easily absorbed by my skin. I am currently using iWhite Korea Aqua Moisturizing Gel (which isn't whitening and reminds me so much of Neutrogena Hydroboost at a fraction of the price). The good thing is that I don't get red and no prickly sensation which is good. I usually concentrate and apply more on my forehead as it's usually the first to get darker/redder.
  • It is water-based so it also gets easily absorbed by the skin on its own.
  • Its packaging - a spray bottle with cap - makes it easy to bring wherever you go for re-application on the arms, or whatever body part you feel like applying this to. 
  • Very affordable for Php 160/100mL bottle.
  • Oh, a product of the Philippines too.

What I don't like:
  • The scent is a tad too strong for my liking. That's another reason why I mix it with Palmer's Cocoa Butter because the latter neutralizes the strong scent. I still smell it but no longer as strong when used alone. Plus when I apply it on my face, I have to breathe through my mouth. It's probably just my sense of smell. 
  • I don't feel like the protection it offers is enough especially if you're the outdoorsy type. But that's just a supposition on my part.

Overall rating: 3.75/5 The scent is the deal-breaker for me. But I'll keep using this because I like the consistency and my face doesn't get red with it which gets a big fat thumbs up from me.

Will I buy again? I would unless I find something that works just the same without the strong scent.



See the ingredients list below.
The Ingredients


What's your favorite sunscreen?

Have a happy Thursday, everyone!

Cheers,
Disclaimer: Product received for review purposes but does not in any way affect my opinion on the said product.
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Wednesday, October 23, 2013

In the Limelight: Sleek Matte Me Ultra Smooth Matte Lip Cream in 433 Rioja Red Product Review

Companies all over the globe have been coming up with their own version of lip creams since one company released their lip creams. Sleek is no exception as they have come up with the Matte Me Ultra Smooth Matte Lip Cream. The official distributor of Sleek Cosmetics in the Philippines, www.beautycorner.ph sent me one to try together with Gloss Me which I shall review on a separate post. The shade I was sent is 433 Rioja Red. I rarely go out sporting red lips as I prefer staying on the safe side with kinda bright colours but are mostly coral or coral-pinks. But I'm much braver now, perhaps it comes with age? :D, and went out on the same day I received the tube of red lip cream to be able to road test it right away. After having worn it quite a number of times, here is what I have to say about the product and the colour.



According to Sleek Cosmetics, Matte Me is...

a matte finish liquid lipstick that glides on in one smooth application, with no need for a second coat. 
The light as air texture provides you with comfortable wear for hours, that doesn’t cake, flake or dry out, ensuring long lasting colour all day.

Available in 6 shades.







What I like:

  • Rioja Red is described on the Sleek website as a true bright red that when paired with Persian Lashes give you a true Hollywood effect. I love the shade, that it's a true blue red that does not make my teeth look yellow. 
  • It lasts for several hours amidst all the drinking and eating I do.
  • It is unscented. Almost all my lip products are scented so this one is a breath of fresh air for me.
  • The tube looks simple yet sleek. The clear tube allows you to see its true color and how much product you have left.
  • The shade brightens up my face. 
  • This lip cream alone is enough to complete a certain look - foundation, brows, liner, mascara, (subtle blush which is optional) and this. Classic!
  • The doe-foot applicator is just the right size and angled just right to glide smoothly on the lips. Although it doesn't follow the curve of the lips, it still works fine.
  • My first impression of a matte lip cream is something that would feel like it's sitting on top of my lips and one wrong move and it'll crack and end up looking like crack polishes. This one feels surprisingly comfortable. I have tried a lip cream from another brand and that didn't feel comfy on my lips.
  • Can be used as a lip stain instead. Dab just a little on your pinky and spread it evenly on both upper and lower lips and you're good to go. For a more intense colour, apply straight on the lips using the doe foot applicator.
  • No irritation on my lips.
  • The shelf life. 36 months or 3 years. Brilliant!
  • Locally available at www.beautycornerph.com for only Php 450.00/6mL of product.

What I don't like:
  • After several sips and meals, I was shocked to see a red outline on my lips. I wish it doesn't do that, I mean if it will come off, I hope everything does. It's pretty hard to remove and if you do that on a night out and wipe it with tissue, you might end up having red lip cream smeared on your face. So, just touch up instead.
  • As with most matte lip products, this has the tendency to be drying. However, it is not as drying as other lipsticks I have tried. Just a dab of lip balm underneath or a coat of gloss on top solves the problem! Those with chronically dry lips might find this even more drying.
  • Limited color selection.
Overall rating: 4/5 The red outline it leaves makes me sad but nothing like a little touch up can remedy.

Will I buy again? Not in the next 3 years unless I lose this tube. Though I'm itching to try a less bright shade. 



Sorry it doesn't look as intense on the picture as it does in real life.


Liking the red!


Ingredients: Dimethicone, Hydrogenated Styrene Isoprene Copolymer Cresin, Silica, Diox, Titanium, Ide/CI77891, Red, Iron Oxide,/ CI77491, Yellow, Iron Oxide/CI77492, Bht, Propylparaben, D&C Orange No.5/CI145370:2, D&C Red No.6/CI15850:3
Have you tried Sleek Matte Me lip cream? What's your fave shade?

Have a super awesome Wednesday, everyone!

Cheers,
Disclaimer: Product received for review purposes but does not in any way affect my opinion on the said product.
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Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Back from Hiatus Post: Blushes - Cremes, Gels, Tints Mini Reviews and Swatches

Hi everyone! It has been a while since I last updated my blog. I had a lot of personal issues to deal with during my hiatus - I quit my office job, underwent therapy for my back, my mom had a stroke and had to take care of her until she made quite a recovery, and I'm back to doing freelance jobs online. Before I digress, allow me to get back on track. I decided there is no better way to make a back from hiatus post than to make it about my favorite makeup - blushes. Recently, I found myself gravitating towards creme blushes as they last longer on my skin now than powder blushes do. On my instagram account, I posted a picture of these blushes and now, I'd like to do swatches and mini reviews of all these. So if you'd like to see swatches and find out what I think of each product, then read on.



Let's start with the creme blushes in pans and a pot.

Top: Le Blush Creme de Chanel in Affinite; Laura Mercier Creme Cheek
Colour in Oleander; Becca Creme Blush in Hyacinth
Bottom: Diorblush Cheek Creme in Bikini

Swatches:
L-R: Affinite, Bikini, Hyacinth, Oleander

Mini Review:


  1. Le Blush Creme de Chanel in Affinite - This is a gorgeous watermelon pink with a hint of red and coral creme blush. Its texture is quite different from all the creme blushes I have tried that I can't quite put my finger on how to exactly describe it. It's has a dry texture but not as airy as mousse blushes and dries to a powder finish. It lasts for hours on my combination-oily skin while giving a nice flush on my cheeks. It looks scary bright in the pan and it really is pigmented so you should use a very light hand in application. I prefer using my fingers in blending this as it's not as creamy and emolient as creme blushes normally are.
  2. Diorblush Cheek Creme in Bikini - Now here's another pretty watermelon pink blush with very fine shimmers that I can barely make out once on the cheeks. It feels like play doh, only a tad softer. It blends well with the skin and gives a nice pop of colour that can surely brighten one's complexion. This, together with Affinite, are my current favourites.
  3. Becca Creme Blush in Hyacinth - This was my HG creme blush before I crossed paths with Affinite and Bikini. Unlike the first two, this one is very creamy and emolient and blends so good on the skin making you look like you are naturally flushing. It is reddish pink in colour which can mimic one's color when blushing (although it still depends on your skin tone). This also has good staying power despite the formula and despite my skin type. 
  4. Laura Mercier Creme Cheek Colour in Oleander - Unlike the first three, this doesn't have a tinge of brightness in it. It is a nice warm pale pink which can look very nice on those with light skin tones. This is perfect for those who just wants some nice light pink on their cheeks. I find this quite a bit dry and a little bit hard to work with but the end result is still nice. Staying power is also pretty good.  


Now on to the gels and tints.


MeMeMe Poppy Tint; Benefit ChaCha Tint; Giorgio Armani Blushing
Fabric 1 Shimmering Peach; Becca Beach Tint in Guava;
Kose Visee Mineral Liquid Cheeks Baby Finish PK800

Swatches:
L-R: Blushing Fabric 1, PK800, Guava, ChaCha Tint, Poppy Tint


Mini Review:
  1. Giorgio Armani Blushing Fabric 1 Shimmering Peach - This is my second Blushing Fabric, the first one being shade 2. I have to say that I am more impressed with this shade than the first one. This gorgeous pink-peach-red shade is absolutely lovely with all the shimmers. It also has a great staying power and with its siliconey texture, it goes on smoothly on the cheeks. This is also pretty pigmented so do not forget to use a light hand in applying this.
  2. Kose Visee Mineral Liquid Cheeks Baby Finish PK-800 - Now this looks neon pink and almost fluorescent when swatched but it turns to a nice warm bright pink shade on the cheeks. It is very pigmented and I can truly say that a little goes a long way with this blush. Staying power isn't as fab as other cremes and liquids but I suppose this will stay much longer for those with dry-normal skin.
  3. Becca Beach Tint in Guava - Becca. I have grown a certain fondness for this brand and it all began with this lip & cheek tint. It is a very pretty light coral pink shade that looks nice on both cheeks and lips. This little tube that contains only 7mL of product is pigmented and a little goes a long way. I love the fruity scent it has too. Although the staying power kinda disappoints me, I still like using it especially on hot and humid days.
  4. Benefit Cha Cha Tint - Coral lovers will like this. Its texture is similar to Posie Tint and not as watery as Benetint so it will give you extra seconds to blend, blend, blend, before it actually stains. I don't like this much on my cheeks because it turns red-orange on me but on the lips, I like it a lot. It is bright and perfect for summer.
  5. MeMeMe Poppy Tint -  This is very much similar to Benefit Posie Tint only this one is more watery. I like it but not as much as I like the my other non-powder blushes. I don't normally reach for this although staying power is decent.
So that is all. I hope you like this post and if you have favorites or suggestions, please leave a comment.

Have a wonderful day, super awesome peeps!

Cheers,

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