January 10, 2012

Rimmel Scandaleyes Mascara Review

I hadn't heard of Rimmel's new Scandal Eyes mascara, but when I saw this giant orange tube at CVS, I had to get one (as if I don't have enough mascaras already!).  
The tube, while eye catching, is really wide, and I found it a little difficult to hold the wand when applying to my lashes.  
The brush is ginormous, and while I have nothing against a large brush, (for example, Diorshow, or Neutrogena Healthy Volume) this brush was probably the biggest one I have ever seen.  I found that I kept hitting it against my eyelid, or the corner of my eye and making black smudges.

I do like the formula- it made my lashes very long, and it did add a bit of volume too. On the positive side, it's a slightly wetter formula that makes it easy to build multiple coats, because it doesn't dry too quickly, but on the negative side, it's a little bit goopy.  

Here are my before and afters: 



While it does a decent job on my lashes, the combination of the too-big brush and the wand that's hard to hold, kind of overshadows the formula.  I normally love Rimmel mascaras, but this one just missed the mark for me.  Thoughts?  Has anyone tried this?

Gud (by Burt's Bees) Pearanormal Activity Body Wash Review

I'm really psyched about the new Gud line from Burt's Bees!  There are four scents that I talked about in a previous post (see post here) , but this post is a review of the Pearanormal Activity scent, which is exclusive to Target and not sold on Gud's website, (gudhappens.com).  
It is paraben free, and contains no phthalates, or petrochemicals.  I love that it has so many natural ingredients, but unfortunately, it is not sulfate free. :(   I looked up the main sudsing ingredient, sodium coco-sulfate, and it's basically a close cousin to sodium laureth sulfate.  But despite that, I still really love this body wash.

Here are some label shots:

It foams very nicely, even without using a pouf or washcloth, and it left my skin feeling very clean, yet soft.  It's not drying at all, (and I have very dry skin).  
The pear & acai berry scent is fantastic!   I liked it in the store, but I liked it even more in the shower this morning.  It was really fresh smelling and invigorating, and the scent lasts a loooong time.  Hours later, I am still catching a whiff of it every time my arm goes past my face, and I find that I keep sniffing my skin (and probably look like a weirdo).  
Even my husband, who isn't crazy about perfumes and scents in general, said I smelled good today.  Plus, I didn't wear perfume, because I wanted to see how the staying power on the scent was, and didn't want anything to compete with it.

Has anyone seen this in stores yet?  Or tried any of the other products in the line?

January 9, 2012

Pantene Aqua Light Review

I was recently given a bottle of Pantene's new Aqua Light Shampoo and a bottle of the Conditioner to try, and since I have fine hair, I'm always excited to try products that promise to not weigh the hair down.  

According to the packaging, the Aqua Light line contains no silicone, which can coat the hair, and is also dye and paraben free.  Here are the ingredients/instruction labels: 



This has the classic Pantene scent, very fresh and clean.  The shampoo lathers nicely and rinses very clean without making the hair feel too dry. 
 The conditioner is light, and not super thick, but it's not runny either- I would say it's a medium weight conditioner.  One thing I noticed when rinsing it out was that my hair didn't feel slick like it does with other conditioners, so it definitely felt like it rinsed all the way out, and it came out easily, without much effort.  

Since my hair is extremely dry and damaged, I was worried that the conditioner wouldn't be enough, especially since it washed out without leaving anything behind.  I was pleasantly surprised to find that my hair was easy to comb through and it felt way more conditioned than I thought it would.  But, when I was blow-drying, I realized that I needed a little more because my hair was looking dry.  So I added a light leave in spray, and everything was fine.  

In my opinion, I think that this will work really well for those with oily, normal and even normal to dry hair.  But for those of you that have a lot of damage due to bleaching like I do, this probably won't be enough.  
So has anyone else tried this, and if so, what did you think? 

January 8, 2012

GUD by Burt's Bees spotted at Target

I was in Target tonight and saw an endcap full of brightly colored bath and body products called GUD.  When I looked closer, I realized that it's made by Burts Bees! 
The line at Target  so far consists of Body Washes, Body Lotions, Shampoo and Conditioner in 4 scents.  

According to the Gud website, there is also body butter, hand cream, hand wash and body mist, but my local Target doesn't carry those, at least not yet.  They are all natural, and contain no parabens, phthalates, or petrochemicals, and according to their website, the scents will make people want to stand a little closer to you and that you'll want to be triple-sniffing your arm.  

Here's a closer look at the scents: 

 Floral Cherrynova according to their website smells like Cherry Blossom and Almond Milk and is sweet but never cloying.  It's a very soft, floral scent.


Pearanormal Activity smells like Pear and Acai Berry.  This scent is a Target exclusive (not sold on the Gud website) and seems to be the most popular, as there were only a handful of them left on the shelf.  I scored the last body wash, and will review it later this week!

Vanilla Flame smells like Vanilla and Rice Milk.  I loved this scent as well- it is almost a spot-on dupe for Bath and Body Works Rice Flower and Shea, and it smells very light and sweet.

Finally, there's Orange Petalooza which smells like blood orange and hyacinth.  It smelled very fresh, clean and citrusy.  

Has anyone out there tried GUD yet?  Visit their website to learn more at GUDHAPPENS.com
Also, if you like them on Facebook, you get a $1 off coupon to print!

Garnier Ultra Lift 2-in-1 Wrinkle Reducer Serum + Moisturizer Review

I already love Garnier skincare products, but this one took my love to a whole new level.   It's a serum and moisturizer in one which is great, because it saves you from buying and using two different products. This cost around $16 at Walgreens, which isn't so bad at all, especially since it's a 2-in-1.
 Here's the ingredients panel and some box photos:

You may not be able see it very well in the photo, but the serum and moisturizer are swirled together in the tube, and when you press the pump down, they mix together.

Here's what one pump looks like.  It's luxurious and balm-like, instead of a thinner texture like a lotion. 

 Here, I spread the product out a bit so you can see the texture a little better.  It's extremely soft and velvety, and even though it's pretty thick, it doesn't feel heavy at all and soaks right into the skin.  It also smells lovely- very light and fresh.  
To test it out, I used it all over my face a few nights ago, but first, I took a picture of the wrinkles on my forehead to see what they would look like after the product was applied.  I wanted to see what kind of results happened right away.  So here's my before forehead wrinkles: 

And this is what they looked like immediately after applying the Ultra Lift 2-in-1: 

So right away, it plumped up the skin and reduced the wrinkles by quite a bit! But then the next morning,when I woke up, this is what I saw: 

I could barely make out where my wrinkles were- they were pretty much gone!  Now before you think this is a miracle product, I have to say that this effect was only temporary.  After I washed my face in the shower and the product was gone from my skin, it looked pretty much like it did the night before.  But, I've been using it for about a week now, and my wrinkles have definitely softened a bit.  
So will it actually get rid of wrinkles for good?  I'll just have to wait for that- the minimum you have to wait before you can expect to see any real results from a skin care product is about 4 weeks.  I'll post an update then with photos, so we can see if it actually reduced the wrinkles permanently.  

Even if it doesn't reduce my wrinkles on a long term basis, I'm still extremely happy with this product.  As long as I'm wearing it, my skin looks smooth, firm and wrinkle free! 
Has anyone tried this?  I'm excited to see if other people had the same experience as me! 

January 7, 2012

Essie's Spring 2012 Colors

Essie's Spring 2012 line, launching in February has some gorgeous shades, some pastel and some bright.
I'm loving them all!
The names conjure up images of a high powered Wall St woman.
From left to right the colors are: Navigate Her, A Crewed Interest, To Buy or Not to Buy, Tour de Finance, Olé Caliente, Orange It's Obvious!

January 6, 2012

Hedy's Man.ish.ma Jet Set Lip Balm Review

I had never heard of the brand Man.ish.ma until I spotted a collection of tinted lip balms at Rite Aid. There are 4 colors: Manhattan-a nude pink, South Beach- a pinky red, Santa Fe- a pretty coral, and Tahoe- a bronze nude. They looked similar to the new crop of tinted balms like L'Oreal's Color Riche Balm and Revlon's Colorburst Lip Butters, and at only $3.99, I had to try one.

 I chose Manhattan and I am really loving everything about it- the color is a perfect "your lips but better" shade, the scent is reminiscent of a vanilla cookie (yum!) and it's super rich and moisturizing without being sticky.  

The packaging is nice too- the tube is made of very sturdy plastic and feels high-end.

Here's a swatch against a white background- you can see it's very sheer and pretty.

Here's my before and after.  I love the rosy color so much. 



Has anyone else heard of this brand, or tried any of their other products?  

January 5, 2012

Maybelline Color Tattoo Contest

Here's your chance to WIN 2 Maybelline Color Tattoo Eyeshadows in Bad to the Bronze and Audacious Asphalt.  It's easy! Sign up through Facebook and you'll have the opportunity to get extra entries.  Or sign up through email, whichever you prefer.

To find out more about these crease-proof, super blendable and longwearing shadows, check out my review  HERE
 Good luck to all!

Revlon Colorstay Creme Gel Eyeliner Review

I needed a new black eyeliner, and was in CVS yesterday (with $4 in extrabucks!), and even though I was originally looking for a regular twist-up type eyeliner, these new Colorstay Creme Gel Eyeliners  looked so interesting, I decided I had to have one. It cost around $11.

Before I even get into the product itself, I have to say how in love with the packaging I am.  This is by far, the coolest packaging ever!  The back of the package gives directions on how to use it, but I'll go through it in photos...

The brush is tucked inside the tall cylinder that has an inkwell at the bottom.  First, you pull the brush out- 

Then you flip it around and attach it to the top of the tube so it's long, like this...

Then, you unscrew the inkwell at the bottom, and viola!  You have a longer handled brush to use. 
When you're finished, the brush stores back inside the tube, upside down.  I love the fact that the brush stores with the product rather than separately. 

The brush is so soft, yet stiff enough to apply the liner easily.  It's a flat brush, so you can use the edge to dot along the lash line and make a skinny line, or you can use the flat side and make a bold, wide line. 

The gel is smooth and stays put until you take it off, and it's totally waterproof. This was so much easier to use than I thought it would be.  I was able to keep a very steady hand, but even if you can't, I find that dabbing the flat edge of the brush along the lashline is almost easier than trying to draw it with a pencil tip.  

Here are my before and afters- it gave a really nice defined smooth line.  I drew the line thin at the inside of my eye, and widened it as I went to the outer corner.  Then, I smudged the residue that was left on the brush on my lower lash line to give just a little color without being a defined line.



I'm definitely going back and getting these in brown and charcoal as well!  This is one of my favorite new drugstore products right now.  What do you guys think? Do you prefer pencil liners or gels like this one? 

January 4, 2012

Maybelline Dream Nude Airfoam Foundation Review

I'm psyched I got to try the new Maybelline Dream Nude Airfoam foundation, since I tried Revlon's version last week, and have been anxious to compare the two.  But first, here are the specifics on Dream Nude...

I bought this in Creamy Natural, which is a little dark for my skin, but blends in well.  It's also very yellow based, while I've got pink undertones, but oh well.  The package says that it's an air-infused foundation for a nude-perfect finish.  It also says to shake the product well before using, and to practice dispensing on a tissue first to practice, which is very good advice!  It comes out pretty fast, so you need to be careful not to press the pump down too hard.

This is what it looks like when it's first dispensed.  It's more liquidy than hair mousse, for example.  Right after you dispense it, it starts to liquify on contact with your skin.  

Below is what it looked like when I spread the product out a bit (didn't rub it in yet). I wanted you to be able to see the texture- it's a very thin formula, but when it comes to foundation, that's a good thing, you don't want a cake-like mask covering your face.  

However, if you're looking for a lot of coverage, you won't get it with this foundation.  It gives more coverage than a tinted moisturizer, but not too much more than that.  Also, if you have very dry skin like me, you probably won't think this is moisturizing enough, so you'd probably do better with the Dream Smooth Mousse instead.  However, if you have oily skin, you'll love the lightweight feel of this.  

Here's what my hand looked like when it was blended in.  It gives a nice soft finish, and does not contain any sparkle. It just evens out the skin nicely.  

Overall, when compared with Revlon's PhotoReady Airbrush foundation, I would say that Dream Nude has lighter coverage, while PhotoReady has medium coverage.  Both are very lightweight, however, the PhotoReady is more moisturizing.  The last point of difference is shimmer- the PhotoReady contains shimmer to give an airbrushed effect, while the Dream Nude doesn't contain shimmer at all.  
Since I've got a few fine lines here and there, and my skin is starting to dry out, the PhotoReady was a better fit for me, but I think Dream Nude Airfoam is a great product for someone with younger, normal to oily skin.  
Has anyone else tried this?  Let me know your thoughts! 
Beauty Tip: When applying foundation, I use a synthetic, flat-top brush and I buff the product into my skin in small circles.  It gives an amazingly smooth, soft finish that looks much smoother than applying with fingers.

January 3, 2012

Maybelline Dream Bouncy Blush Review- Fresh Pink

I've been dying to review the new Dream Bouncy blushes from Maybelline.  I picked one up last week in #05 Fresh Pink, and have been using it ever since.

These are different than anything I've seen in the drugstore to date.  They are not quite a cream, and not quite a powder.  They have a clay or putty-like texture, and when applied, they have a soft powdery finish.  To apply it, you have to just sweep your finger over the product and smooth it into cheeks, like you would a cream blush.

If you look closely, you can see how there are dents in the product from where I used my fingers- it almost feels like Silly Putty- it's really cool!
The colors look dark in the pot, but the effect on skin is very soft and pretty.  In fact, I tried to make a swatch on my hand, but the camera wasn't picking it up well, so I went with a picture of my cheek area to show the true effect.  It's very subtle, and doesn't dry fast like a cream blush does, so you have time to blend.  It's also build-able if you want it to be a bit darker.  It's just a very soft, natural flush.

What do you guys think of this new blush?  

Beauty Tip:  For a pretty, natural flush, apply blush to the apples of the cheeks and blend slightly upward and back toward your ear.