Thursday, March 26, 2009

Sephora eyebrow palette review



























So here's my review of Sephora's eyebrow palette. I was debating between this one and Urban Decay's brow box which was WAY more expensive (but the little tweezers were SO cute!). Anyway, I'm very satisfied with it since it's about time I started using a proper brow powder instead of regular eyeshadow :P

SEPHORA EYEBROW PALETTE 02

Product Description: This chic compact contains two complementary shades of brow powder (a deeper shade for shaping and a lighter shade for filling in), a lightweight brow wax to hold your perfectly groomed brows in place. Mini angled brow brush included.

Pros: color is very pigmented, long lasting, and natural, light and dark shade, comes with mini brow brush and brow wax, compact is sleek and simple.

Cons: the brow brush is a really stiff, the compact is a BIT big (it's still slim), the powder is, well, really powdery. So the compact tends to get messy but this isn't a big deal.

What I thought about it: I got the 02 palette for brown to black hair. At first I thought that the shades were really light, but it turns out that they are both quite pigmented, and both shades naturally match my brow color and last all day. I don't really need the wax but it's a plus. Also, the mini applicator brush is a bit stiff and harsh, so I use my own brow brush. Like I mentioned in the cons, the compact tends to get a bit messy but is easily cleaned. It's also small enough to fit in a makeup bag although it might take up a little more space than it really needs to. All in all, this was definately a steal for only $12. Works great!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Why I love Sephora

Okay, so this is totally a shameless plug, but after telling myself for years that entering a Sephora store is equivalent to burning a hole in your wallet, I was completely wrong. Or so I think. Sephora.com is my current favorite place to shop online for makeup, skin care; just about everything under the sun in the beauty world. Plus, they sell a variety of different brands, and you can find deals and steals just about anywhere on the site.

I love the way their website is set up; the user interface is so simple and easy to follow. The best sorting option imo is the "Sort by price: Low to High" which puts the most inexpensive items first (obviously). It's great to find some deals you might not have stumbled upon otherwise... some products are as low as $2.00! There's also lots of other search sort options you can choose from (ie: skin concern, type, brand name, a-z, etc.) Also, their customer reviews sections are great for leaving and reading feedback so you can decide whether or not a product is for you. There's also ingredient information, reccommendations, and product q&a. Very helpful!

Not to mention, you get 3 free samples at checkout (: Now, this may not seem like much, but when you have been placing orders non-stop for one week (like me :P), those samples can add up if you find something you like. Then you always have the option to buy the full-size product. Also, there is free shipping on orders over $50 and free returns :D

I reccomend taking advantage of all the Sephora has to offer by becoming a Beauty Insider. You get a whole lot of freebies (free shipping for your first month!) and updates about the latest scoop in beauty products new to Sephora. Idk about you but I love getting updates in email newsletters xD

I will be writing about my orders from Sephora as soon as they get here! I purchased their brow palette, a toner, a makeup remover, and this: an eyeshadow, lipgloss, blush, bronzer, (and applicators) palette -$120 value- for only $22 :D I was skeptic at first, but it had decently good reviews (still reading some mixed reviews though)... a possible dupe for Coastal Scents 78 piece palette? Maybe I'll try that one sometime - it's only $21.95. Eh, nothing an eye primer can't help either way (; Plus, it's paraben-free! Anyways, I don't care for too-too opaque color payoff. Well, I'll just have to wait and see when my order comes in.

Monday, March 16, 2009

How-to: avoid fakes!

I figure this information will come in handy for people who shop on ebay, etc. and don't want to get deceived by sellers proclaiming how authentic their products are. I've never been one to buy knock-offs, but other people might unknowingly buy some bag and think they've got designer ish when it's really fake. Horribly fake. Why can't they tell?


HOW TO AVOID FAKE TOKIDOKI BAGS
HOW TO AVOID FAKE COACH BAGS
HOW TO AVOID FAKE LOUIS VUITTON BAGS
HOW TO AVOID FAKE PRADA BAGS
HOW TO AVOID FAKE CHANEL BAGS
HOW TO AVOID FAKE GUCCI BAGS
HOW TO AVOID FAKE JUICY COUTURE BAGS
HOW TO AVOID FAKE DOONEY & BOURKE BAGS
HOW TO AVOID FAKE VERSACE BAGS
HOW TO AVOID FAKE FENDI BAGS
HOW TO AVOID FAKE BURBERRY BAGS

Example:
I was at the mall with the hubby during xmas & there was a lady (asian - not to be racist) and she was selling tokidoki bags. From far away, I was all "OMG!" Then I got closer and realized:

Red Flag no. 1 - They were around 20-40 dollars for even large bags. WTF.
Red Flag no. 2 - The bag styles there aren't styles made by tokidoki.
Red Flag no. 3 - A few characters on the bag don't even exist.
Red Flag no. 4 - The colors were wrong, and places like the characters eyes were colored in instead of white.
Red Flag no. 5 - The strip on the bag with the LeSportsac logo was totally WRONG. It looked nothing like what it's supposed to look like. Even the text was noticably different than the real thing.
Red Flag no. 6 - Some bags didn't even have the lesportsac logo on the strip.
Red Flag no. 7 - None of the bags had qee's, beaded chains, or colored zipper pulls.

It was so deceiving from far away.What really pissed me off was that the lady first told us they were knock offs. Then she said that Tokidoki wasn't being manufactured anymore, so these were from the factory, which is why some bags didn't have the logo strip. By then I'm just like "Yeah okay. Let's go." Forget that. We left for about 20 minutes and when we walked back there were about 5 people enthusiastically buying a crapload of bags. I felt pretty sorry for them. Maybe they didn't care if they were knockoffs or not (FYI selling knockoffs is actually considered counterfeiting / fraud and is ILLEGAL), but if they thought they were getting the real deal FOR a "real deal", the seller was deceivingly telling them that the bags were actually authentic.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Neutrogena Deep Clean gentle scrub review

This is my once-a-week exfoliant/face mask. It's my HG of all Neutrogena cleansers (: However, I've read mixed opinions about it. So, I figure I'd do my own review.

NEUTROGENA DEEP CLEAN GENTLE SCRUB

Product Description: Neutrogena Deep Clean™ Gentle Scrub is the daily cleansing scrub with Beta Hydroxy proven to clean deep down into your pores, yet is gentle enough to use every day. Skin looks and feels soft and smooth after just one use. Beta Hydroxy formula penetrates deep into pores to remove blackhead-causing dirt and oil. Gentle microbeads exfoliate dull, dead surface skin. It's rich foaming creamy lather rinses clean. Skin is instantly softer, smoother, healthier-looking and refreshed. Dermatologist-tested formula. Non-comedogenic. Made in USA.

Ingredients: Water, Sodium Methyl Cocoyl Taurate, Glycerin, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Glycol Distearate, Stearic Acid, Acrylates/C10 30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Linoleamidopropyl PG Dimonium Chloride Phosphate, Neopentyl Glycol Dicaprylate/Dicaprate, Salicylic Acid, Polyethylene, Disodium EDTA, Xanthan Gum, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Sodium Hydroxide, Cetyl Alcohol, Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben, Ethylparaben, Propylparaben, Butylparaben, Agar, Mica, Titanium Dioxide, Iron Oxide, Red 30 Lake, Fragrance

Pros: smells nice (orange-y), exfoliating beads make skin instantly softer and smoother, creamy texture, rinses easily, doesn't leave a film, after use, skin is visibly smoother and feels fresh and clean (in my experience), contains salicylic acid for acne.

Cons: some people might not like the smell, everyday use might dry out your skin and cause some mild irritation/redness.

What I thought about it: This is definately my FAVORITE Neutrogena cleanser. It's great (for me) because the exfoliating beads in the cleanser really do a good job making my skin feel smoother and softer after just one use. Not to mention, I also love the smell. However, I've found that when I used this cleanser consitently, it did dry out my skin a bit around my nose and forehead (prob. due to the salicylic acid), so now I only use this once a week as a scrub/mask. I like this a whole lot better than the Neutrogena Deep Clean Invigorating scrub that I tried, since it also has acne medication to keep my breakouts to a minimum. I don't have much else to say about this besides if you have your doubts, do at least TRY this product. In my case, my results were immediately smoother, softer, and more clean and healthy looking skin.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

UDPP vs TFSI

So, I've really been wanting to try Urban Decay's eyeshadow Primer Potion TRIED IT. But I've been reading reviews on Too Faced's Shadow Insurance, and it sounds pretty good as well. Some people swear by UDPP and some people swear by TFSI... so I'm thinking of trying TFSI later. For now, here's some great reviews to show you the pros and cons of each.

REVIEWS:
http://www.askmewhats.com/2009/02/udpp-vs-tfsi.html
http://www.girlmeetsmakeup.com/2008/08/tfsi-vs-udpp-vs-mac-pp.html
http://nessasarymakeup.blogspot.com/2008/09/udpp-vs-too-faced-shadow-insurance.html

URBAN DECAY PRIMER POTION:
• $17.00 from http://www.urbandecay.com/

TOO FACED SHADOW INSURANCE:
• $17.00 from http://www.toofaced.com/

Friday, March 6, 2009

Toothpaste spot treatment

TOOTHPASTE FOR SPOT TREATMENT?
I'm sure most of you have heard of this remedy for troublesome pimples but not a lot of you have actually tried it. From my experiences, it has worked pretty well for me, without any irritation or redness. Here's a basic overview of the pros and cons and other stuff you should know if you want to try this method:

What you need:
• PASTE (white) toothpaste, NOT gel! Find one with minimal additives. Natural or organic toothpastes are a good bet, since they usually have a short ingredient list.

What to do:
• Wash your face with a gentle cleanser.
• Dot a little paste on the pimple (usually after you take a bath).
• It's usually best to use this method on whiteheads.
• Leave it on overnight (or only an hour or so if you have super sensitive skin).
• Wash it off in the morning.

Positive Results:
• The pimple should be visibly smaller and dried out, or gone altogether.
• Results vary with the kind of toothpaste you use, the pimple, and your skin type.

Negative Results:
• The area where the pimple is might be too dried out, itchy, or red if you left it on too long or have extra sensitive skin.

How it works:
• Dries out the pimple (like a clay mask would do), while dehydrating and absorbing oil

Toothpaste method VS Rx treatments:
• Salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide are both common anti-acne ingredients, and both cause some drying of the skin.
• Salicylic acid has been shown to promote cell turnover, meaning that skin gets exfoliated and fresh skin cells come to the surface.
• Benzoyl peroxide fights acne bacteria specifically and also does not cause bacterial resistance.

IMPORTANT 411 for those with SENSITIVE SKIN:
• Menthol is an ingredient that often irritates skin and causes itching and inflammation. It is used in many toothpastes for that minty clean feeling. But in fact, you should avoid any skin product that lists menthol as an ingredient
• Fluoride in toothpaste may be another irritating factor if applied to skin.
• Avoid special whitening toothpastes because they have more hydrogen peroxide which can dry out your skin too much.

SO ALL IN ALL,
This method has worked nicely for me, but I don't really have sensitive skin. I suggest this method for people who know their skin type and what it can handle. So, if you have sensitive skin, use this method sparingly!I would only use this method as a SPOT TREATMENT, not for your entire face, and usually only if/when you don't have a regular spot treatment that you know works. This is not something for everyday use. Leaving it on too long over a large area could badly irritate your skin. So remember, SPOT TREATMENT ONLY!