Saturday, January 7, 2012

Urban Decay Surreal Skin Cream to Powder Foundation Review

Foundation; the hardest and yet sometimes the most essential part of a woman (or man's) makeup regimen. First you have to find the right formula that will work with your face, then right shade, then the right tone. Do you go high end or buy from a drug store? Will it make you look too ashy or too orange? Does it provide enough coverage? And just when you think you've found THE ONE... your skin goes and changes on you. And then you're on that search for the perfect foundation... again.

Such is the plight for me. I used to wear MAC's Studio Fix Foundation with SPF in NC40 and for awhile, it worked really well. It gave me the coverage I needed and almost flawless when I applied it with a duo fiber brush. I've worn this brand and shade for almost five years. I'd found the one!
And then I turned 28 and all of sudden my skin changed. AGAIN! *sigh* The foundation I'd been wearing was no longer working for me. It felt too heavy and began to cause a lot of break outs on my skin.
So off I went in search of another foundation. I was in my local Macy's and I stopped by the Urban Decay counter to check out some eye shadows and what not. I wasn't really going to buy foundation since I was on my last leg of MAC NC40 foundation anyway. And then a really perky and bright eyed UD Girl got a hold of me and we began talking about what I was looking for. She asked me about my skin type and after I told her, she suggested the Surreal Skin Cream-to-Powder Foundation which is good for normal to oily skin. She applied the foundation to my skin and at first I was kinda *meh* about it. But I figured it was just the lighting. I bought it though and even then I felt like kicking myself in the butt for being talked into buying it. But I took it home and set in on my dresser and left it there for a few days.
And then Christmas day came and I was out of my MAC foundation. I glanced at the little purple compact on my dresser and decided "now or never" when it came to the foundation. I remember thinking about how I really hoped it worked because honestly, who likes to buy ANYTHING and find out it's a dud. Money's lost, we lose, the company wins, etc.

I checked out the little brush that came in it and thought it was pretty funny looking but I did like the way it felt on my fingers. I applied it on and it felt...
It literally felt like I was applying silk on my face and it gave me the coverage I wanted plus blended easily. I didn't have to layer it on like I do my MAC foundation and it doesn't make me feel like it clogs my pores. I don't know if there are any luminizers in the foundation itself, because there is a little bit of shine but not something that would make me not want to buy it again. I just used my Make Up Forever HD Powder to matte it down if necessary.
The staying power is great too! I wore it for over 12 hours Christmas day and it looked just as good as when I first applied it! I didn't have to touch it up at all during the day.
I can't say there are any cons about this product for me. I love the way it looks, the way it feels, even the little brush that comes with it because it applies the foundation so well for me. I have read other reviews and found that it doesn't do well with dry skin, but it could be a case by case kind of thing.
I am so extremely pleased that I took a chance on this foundation and ended up really liking it! It retails $34 on the Urban Decay's website and at Macy's where I bought it from their counter.
What's your favorite product from Urban Decay?
*pictures are mine. please do not steal.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Olay Regenerist Review

I'm part of a website for mothers called Cafemom ( and I was asked to participate in doing a review for Olay's new Regenerist line. I was sent their Micro-Sculpting Cream and their UV Defense Regenerating Lotion to review and so without further ado, here it is: 

My first impression when I received my Olay package in the mail was that I liked the packaging. It was very sleek and pretty looking. Great packaging. The smell was over all pleasant, although the UV Defense Lotion did smell slightly medicine-y. The Micro Sculpting Cream had a much more pleasant smell, kind of floral and sweet.
After following directions, and washing my face, I applied the lotion to my face and found that though it moisturized, it wasn't as moisturizing as my Estee Lauder Day Wear Advanced Multi-Protection Anti-Oxidant Lotion. I also applied the Micro Sculpting Cream and found it smoothed and softened some areas of my face but I still felt small patches of dry/rough skin on my face.
I figured since it was my first day using it, I needed to give it some time to sink into my skin. So I kept using it for three days. After the third day, I made the decision that I actually didn't like Olay's Regenerist line.
My skin has been changing quite a bit as I've gotten older. Spots that were once extremely oily are now dryer and need more moisturizer. Though this line is supposed to be moisturizing, I felt that it did very little moisturizing and felt like it dried my skin further. Not only that, whenever I looked in the mirror after washing my face, my skin looked blemished and uneven. I don't know if it was a result of the product or what. (I've since gone back to using my Estee Lauder products and my skin has gone back to being even in tone and my blemishes are less noticeable.)
I really did want to like this product, but I just don't feel it's something for me. I think I'll stick with my Estee Lauder.
Though I received these products for free, I checked online for the retail price of these two products and together they can retail between $50-$60.
Maybe this might work for you, maybe not. All in all, I wasn't at all satisfied.
*pictures are mine. please do not steal*

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Urban Decay 15th Anniversary Pallet Review

Urban Decay came out with this pallet awhile ago, and I've had it since they first hit stores. Unfortunately I haven't been able to really do a review on it until now.
For Urban Decay's 15th Anniversary they came out with their anniversary pallet. I haven't bought anything from Urban Decay in a long time, aside from some Primer Potion because they have a tendency to use duplicate colors in their pallets. There were several pallets I wanted, but because they used repeat colors, I opted out of buying them. This pallet has 15 brand new colors and one color in particular that shares my namesake. Knowing that made me want to snag the pallet just for that one color. LOL.
They ended up selling out on their website almost immediately, but I read on Temptalia's website that they were selling it on so I made my way over there and bought one for myself before it could go out of stock. I waited about a week to get it and when I did... It was like Christmas!
The pallet comes encased in a purple velvet box whereas the actual pallet itself is plastic with a metallic finish. I really like the jewel embellishments on the face of the pallet. The material used for the cover picks up fingerprints like crazy though, so my OCD kicks in and I'm constantly wiping it to remove smudgy fingerprints. LOL.

When you open the pallet, the colors are displayed in all their glory and looking at them seriously made me want to squeal with happiness... actually, I think I DID squeal.
I swatched some of their colors on my skin over Urban Decay Primer Potion and *OMG* they are SUPER pigmented! The several looks I have done with this pallet, every time I dipped my brush in and applied the shadow on my eye, I was always surprised with how much pigment was deposited on my eyelids.

The colors swatched (clockwise) are:
~ Midnight 15
~ Junkshow
~ Deep End
~ Half Truth
~ Black Out
~ Omen
~ Chase (yay for my namesake!!!)

The pallet retails for $55 dollars and because times have gotten a little rough, it wasn't a buy that I would normally make. But considering there were 15 brand new shadows, with the addition of tax, I was only paying about $4 per shadow. I felt like this was a good deal since Urban Decay shadows usually retail for almost $17 separately.
This is a really great product and ILOVEIT so much! I've always been a fan of Urban Decay and so for them to come out with something new was nothing short of exciting to me. LOL
Hope you enjoyed this review.
*pictures are mine. please do not steal*

Saturday, November 12, 2011

LOTD: Winter Snow Princess

Here is what boredom does to you when you have free time, tons of makeup and crazy contacts. 
*FYI, this is a creative look. Not something I would normally wear out into public. Sometimes I like to get a little expressive with my makeup. After all, isn't that what it's there for? ;-)*
I wanted to try out the new pallets I bought from my Walgreens Haul and I wanted to do a look in honor of me being a Winter baby.
I used my "Winter" pallet (as I like to call it) for my eyeshadow and my NYX Jumbo Pencil in "Milk" to line my lower and upper lash line. I also used my Jumbo pencil to "color" my eyelashes since I didn't have colored mascara and then used an eyeshadow brush and a icy turquoise blue to set my lashes. The icy blue eyeliner is MAC's Fluidline in "Delphine" and I used a glitter eyeliner from Urban Decay (I forgot the name).
I think I will try this look again but with more "stuff" to create that iced out Princess look.

Profusion Beauty Gift Set Review

So this is my review on the Profusion Beauty Gift Set I got from Walgreens a couple days ago. Due to the holiday season, there are a lot of deals going on so I bought this set for $14.99. It came with:

~6 nail polishes
~5 lipsticks
~4 eyeshadow pallets
~4 color corrector/concealers
~4 lip sugars
~2 lip glosses
~2 lip liners
~2 eye liners
~2 blushes
~2 face powders
~a variety of sponge applicators and brush applicators
Not a bad haul for $14.99. This is going to be a pretty long review, so I've only taken pictures and swatched items I'm more likely to use.
So here we go....
The Eyeshadow Pallets

So there were four that came in this gift set. Since the pallets had varying colors but specific themes in them, I'm going to refer to them as my "Spring", "Summer", "Fall" and "Winter" pallets to better differentiate between them.
I swatched two colors from each pallet on my hand over Urban Decay Primer Potion in the order: Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall. I also did a look using the Winter pallet and I will include a link down below to take you to my LOTD.
The shadows gave pretty decent pay off but were a little hard to blend. I also had to pack on a lot of the shadow to get the opacity I wanted, but considering the look I was doing, I probably would have to do that with other shadows as well, so I can't complain.
The Lipsticks

The lipsticks that came with the set were all right. Nothing I'd be overly thrilled to get. The reddest lipstick gave the best color payoff but it wasn't as pigmented as some lipsticks I've used in the past (MAC, L'Oreal, Wet n Wild, just to name a few). I had to really rub it on to my skin just to get them to show up on my skin. The lighter pinks and peach colored lipsticks had a little too much shimmer for my taste and I don't think they were the right tone to compliment my skin.
The Lip Glosses

I actually really liked the lip glosses. The red lip gloss reminded me of the holly berries that people decorate their homes with and showed up very nicely, even on my darker toned skin. And the peach colored lip gloss had little bits of gold shimmer in it (at least that's what I saw, lol) which I really liked. I could see myself using these lip glosses over lipsticks.
The Lip Sugars

These were way too sticky for me and the colors screamed "pre-teen" to me. Plus there was too much "buble gum" shimmer in them. I might give them to my daughter or include them in a giveaway I'm thinking of having.
The Lip/Eye Liners
Their your pretty standard lip and eye liners. They give decent pay off. I like the red lip liner though. I could see myself using it to do a red lip sometime in the future.
The Color Correcter/Concealers

They blended right into the skin which I suppose is a good think, but they almost completely disappeared which leads me to believe that I would have to use a lot of product to make a difference in correcting and concealing skin blemishes and there really isn't that much product in a pot. I might throw these into my PROkit just for back up purposes.
As for the nail polishes, blushes, and face powders, I don't think I'll ever really use them, but I wouldn't mind giving them to my daughter to play around with.
All in all, I really liked the eye shadow pallets and lip glosses. I don't think I lost out on anything knowing what many eye shadow pallets and lip glosses run for these days.
This gift set is cool for what it is and is a great starter kit for someone getting started in makeup and wanting to experiment with using different colors.
I hope you liked this review!

link to LOTD using Winter pallet:

Estee Lauder's DayWear Moistizer and Idealist Review

So I bought these two products from the Estee Lauder counter in Macy's and I've been using them for awhile now, but haven't really had a chance to do a review on them yet. So without further ado....
I purchased Estee Lauder's Idealist Even Skintone Illuminator after seeing the commercial, and I figured I'd try it out. I know it's a bit of a pricey buy (retails for $58) but I don't really go out and spend a lot of money on makeup or skin care products. At least not like I used to. I decided to buy it because I noticed that my skin has been changing a lot lately. Dry patches on areas that were once more oily, hyper pigmentation becoming more pronounced, all that jazz. And my skin has become a little more sensitive to my make up as of late, but I simply cannot wear light makeup. I'm one of those women who has to wear full coverage if I have on any makeup at all. But now that I see my skin changing, I want to be able to go without wearing makeup but still having beautiful skin. I've been using this product for awhile and I personally cannot tell if my skin has gotten better. But apparently others have. People tell me that my skin is flawless. I seriously wonder who their looking at sometimes. But I figure as much as I paid for it, it better be doing something. LOL. The product feels really nice going on. It feels a bit greasy at first but as you apply it to your face, it smooths out and the greasy feel disappears, replacing it with a smooth, almost silicone like feel. It also absorbs into the skin very nicely. Also the lemony citrus smell is refreshing as you apply.
The second item I purchased was the Day Wear Advanced Multi-Protection Anti-Oxidant Lotion. I LOVE how this makes my skin feel after application. It's so soft and smooth and I find myself touching my face a lot, though I know I shouldn't. LOL. It smells like cucumbers which makes application a pleasant experience. I've put on lotions that said they'd smooth out skin or moisturize but ended up smelling a little too fruity or medicinal for my taste. This product retails for $43 at Estee Lauder counter.
I like these products a lot, and would more than likely buy them again. The Day Wear Moisturizer especially.
Hope you enjoyed this review!
*pictures are mine. please do not steal*

Moist's Hemp Body Moisturizer "Acai Berry" Review

I'm sure some of you who shop at Sally's Beauty Supply or Cosmo Prof or any other beauty supply store has seen this brand of lotion from Moist called "Hemp". *insert marijuana jokes here. go ahead, I have. LOL* When I saw it, I was like, "oh cool, that's nice." Standard brush off.
Then one day, during Breast cancer Awareness Month, we started selling a pink Hemp lotion in my salon. Again I was like, "oh cool, that's nice." Then came that fateful day I needed some lotion. My hands had become way too dry from one too many shampoos. LOL. So I tried some lotion. It ended up smelling very nice and softened my hands very well.
That stayed in my mind when it was time for me to stock up on body lotion so on my next trip to Sally's I made my way to the body lotion aisle and perused their selection of Hemp lotions. I ended up choosing their Acai Berry lotion and I have to say I really like it.
The smell is more floral than fruity which I like since strong perfumey lotions give me headaches and the feel of my skin after working the lotion is soft and smooth. The lotion isn't very thick, or creamy which I like because I find the thicker lotions to be too greasy for me. The lotion does require you to work it into the skin for it to be completely absorbed but it doesn't take as long as it would if you were using a body cream or body butter.
Another nice thing about this lotion: It was less than $6 for 18 fluid ounces of product. The online prices are more expensive so I don't know if they've raised the prices since I bought mine in the actual store, but I still figure $8 a much better price than spending over $10 at Bath and Body or Victoria's Secret for 16 ounces.
Have you ever tried the Hemp products? If so, which one do you like?
*picture is mine. please do not steal*