Archive for October, 2008

The Body Shop’s Nature’s Minerals Foundation, Blush, and Eyeshadow Review

October 27, 2008

As promised in this post, my review of The Body Shop’s new Nature’s Minerals line! A small caveat though-I’m really not the best person to be reviewing mineral products since I don’t have all that much experience with them, nor do I tend to love them. Okay so I did love my Aromaleigh blushes but mineral foundations have always tended to irritate my sin.

Swatches of everything at the end of the post!

Nature’s Minerals Foundation in Shade 02, Cheek Color in Pink Quartz, and Eye Color in Radiant Graphite

Packaging: I really was impressed with the packaging for the entire line. The shimmery graphite-like black tops were pretty and a nice change of pace from the not so interesting toppers I’m used to. I LOVED the fact that the foundation had an expiration date printed right on the side so that I would know when it needs to be tossed, but most of all I loved the mesh sifters that the Body Shop chose to use. Seriously more companies need to take this up, because it makes for very little mess and waste, plus no clumps! The mesh-sifter is genius people!

Mesh Sifter from Foundation

Nature’s Minerals Foundation ($25):

What did I love? Well first and foremost, this mineral foundation caused absolutely no reaction whatsoever from my skin. No irritation, itchiness, breakouts, etc. Thanks to the mesh sifter the foundation is clump free and very finely milled, making for a beautiful smooth texture. I piled this stuff on and I could hardly feel a thing.

Not so much: The coverage unfortunately. This is probably why I’m not a mineral foundation kinda girl–I need medium to full coverage from my foundations, and that’s hard to get from a non-liquid. Heck it can be hard to get from a liquid foundation! Nature’s Minerals Foundations offer light to I’d say light/medium coverage, meaning if you have residual redness in your cheeks after priming and all that good stuff, it’ll tone it down but it’ll still be there.

As for oil control, it was decent but not exceptional. I was oily/shiny within 2-3 hours and it was all downhill from there.

I also didn’t completely love the shade, but that was entirely my fault as I probably should’ve gone with 01 rather than 02, which is a little dark for me.

Verdict? If you have decent skin to begin with, or like to go for a soft natural look, this is a nice mineral foundation option, and probably among the best that I’ve tried, but I’m not converted just yet!

Nature’s Minerals Cheek Color in Pink Quartz ($18):
I’m loving pretty much everything about this one! Pink Quartz is a pretty soft pink blush with luster-adding mica particles which diffuse light to help disguise fine lines that’s flattering to most skintones. On me it creates a natural flush that’s perfect for those days when I’m going for a more understated look.

Nature’s Minerals Eye Color in Radiant Graphite ($13):
Radiant Graphite is a soft gray/copper shade with beautiful shimmer that I’ve been using pretty often for a barely there daytime smoky eye. The Nature’s Minerals Eye Colors tend to be pretty sheer as a whole, so while color is buildable the look below is pretty much as pigmented as they’re going to get if you don’t apply these with a wet applicator (which I have yet to try).

And Swatches:

Swatches: Foundation in 02, Cheek Color in Pink Quartz, Eye Color in Radiant Graphite


Drugstore Discoveries: Clean & Clear Deep Action Exfoliating Scrub Review

October 27, 2008

It’s been years and years since I’ve laid hands on a Clean & Clear skincare product, but this little tube of goodness came attached to Clean & Clear’s oil absorbing papers (a spur of the moment purchase) so I decided to give it a try.

I’ll admit that I’m horribly snobbish when it comes to beauty products. I tend to prefer high-end expensive products just because I find that they usually work better for me, but Clean & Clear’s Deep Action Exfoliating Scrub is pretty wonderful and a serious bargain at only $4.99!

While this is an exfoliating product, it’s gentle enough to use as an everyday cleanser since the exfoliating beads aren’t that harsh, nor are there that many of them. Yes the exfoliating beads could be a little smaller, and if you wanted to use this as a weekly scrub rather than a daily product, you’d probably want for there to be more of them, but all in all this is a remarkably good product.

I like to use this in conjunction with my Clarisonic because even though they recommend that you not use it with scrubs, this one really is gentle enough for my skin, or just on its own when my skin is feeling a little scaly. The Deep Action Exfoliating Scrub gives off an intense cooling sensation that I love and really leaves my skin feeling cooled and refreshed in the mornings.


I just had to come back and add one thing–there’s a cream cleanser from this Deep Clean line that’s absolutely TERRIBLE so stay away from it!

Rating: 4/5


My First Tag!

October 27, 2008

I’ve been tagged by Anastasia’s Ball of String–how exciting! So here’s a little something about me:

10 Years Ago (1998):

1. I was 14 years old.

2. I performed in England with my fellow Juilliard students.

3. I read like a fiend and finished almost every book in the young adult section of my neighborhood library.

4. I wasn’t allowed to wear makeup.

5. I was horribly chubby.

5 Things on Today’s “To Do” List:

1. Get up a bunch of new blog posts.

2. Clean the house, it’s starting to look like a pigsty!

3. Play with Chloe.

4. Buy tons of makeup! *Sigh* if only…

5. Pre-order some Disney for Paul & Joe stuff from Bergdorf.

5 Things that I would do if I were a millionaire:

1. Buy a nice big brick house with a GIANT dressing area to house all my cosmetics.

2. Invest.

3. Start my own cosmetics line and open up a cute little boutique.

4. Donate to charity.

5. Buy myself some new clothes!

5 Places I have lived:

1. This isn’t going to be very interesting since I’ve lived in all of two places! I was born and raised in NJ, so that’s where I’ve spent most of my life.

2. I attended college and grad school in NY, so of course I spent a few years of my life there.

Now I’m tagging: All of the people I would have tagged have already been tagged, so I won’t double-tag!

MAC Passions of Red Holiday Collection Swatches and Review

October 24, 2008

Thanks to an unplanned shopping trip, you get swatches of MAC’s latest Passions of Red release from their Holiday collection!

Top Row: Infatuating Rose: 6 Cool Eyes
Bottom Row: Devoted Poppy: 6 Classic Eyes

Infatuating Rose 6 Cool Eyes: Features Platonic, Cavort, Satisfy, Bon Fête, Deep Feelings, and Feast. So I think it’s rather obvious that this is my favorite palette from my post here. The stock photo on the MAC site simply does not do this (or any of the other palettes) justice. While I’m not crazy about the end shades, the four in between them are just TDF. And the cute deep pink packaging? Be still my heart!

Devoted Poppy 6 Classic Eyes: Includes Young Thing, In Awe, Fall Deeply, Amorously, Sweet Eyes and Awaken. After seeing this palette I was expecting to love it thanks to the seemingly gorgeous shimmery frosty green and blue, but the textures on these were altogether too chunky and glittery and so I wasn’t a fan.

Top Row: Fascinating Ruby: 6 Smokey Eyes
Bottom Row: Intriguing Scarlet: 6 Warm Eyes

Fascinating Ruby 6 Smokey Eyes: Includes Scant, Satin Taupe, Dark Devotion, Gorgeous, Ambiance, and Carbon. Okay so was anybody else expecting a less brown smokey eyes palette? Because I sure was! I much preferred Smoke & Ash from Suite Array to this for a true smokey look.

Intriguing Scarlet 6 Warm Eyes: Includes Warm Suede, Grand Entrance, Real Drama, Gentle Heat, Well Spiced and Sweet Joy. So this was the standout surprise for me from the collection. While I’m not normally into these types of shades at all, they were so rich and pigmented and texturally beautiful that I found myself falling just a little for this palette. And how Thanksgiving-y does Warm Eyes look? ‘Tis the season!

Top Row: Intriguing Scarlet: 3 Cool Pink Lips
Middle Row: Devoted Poppy: 3 Coral Lips
Bottom Row: Fascinating Ruby: 3 Plump Lips

So the lip palettes as a whole I wasn’t all that crazy about. The shades all ended up looking rather similar once swatched, and while pretty and glossy they just weren’t pigmented enough for my taste. It’s not that I like for my lips to be crazy bright, but something that would show up would be nice.

Have my swatches tempted you? Dissauded you? What do you think you’ll be getting?

Playing Around at Sephora: LipFusion Plump + Replump

October 24, 2008

After seeing LipFusion’s Plump + Replump on HSN a few weeks back (I swear it was a one time thing!) I haven’t been able to get it out of my head, and so finally decided to put myself out of my misery and play with the darn thing while at Sephora today. I’m a big of LipFusion’s products since they’re the one plumping product that’s ever really plumped my lips at all without massive amounts of stinging and burning, so while I knew I’d probably like this liquid lipstick, I was seriously hoping I wouldn’t since at $38 a pop it’s just waaaay too rich for my blood.

But seriously who was I kidding? Putting the words liquid and lipstick together and I’m pretty much a goner. I don’t know what it is about those two little words that combine to create creamy glossy heaven for me! The product could probably be pure garbage and I’d still be tempted.

Not that LipFusion’s Plump + Replump was garbage by any means! I tested out Bunny, a soft pinky neutral shade, and tada here are the results! What do you think?

I love the way LipFusion feels on the lips–slightly cooling and tingly, with an almost numbing sensation as your lips plump up a bit. No you won’t have an Angelina Jolie-esque pout, but who really thinks that’d be flattering on the average woman anyway? This product does however plump up those find lines you have on your lips and gives an overall fuller appearance. Hey I was happy!

So I couldn’t bring myself to shell out the $38, but come Friends & Family this will be mine! *Cue evil laughter*….

Vote for Ana!

October 24, 2008

The beautiful Anastasia entered Beauty From The Earth’s Halloween Contest with her green fairy look–I hope you’ll join me in voting for her and her awesome artistic skills!

Ana is entry #6, so click on over here, scroll down and vote for her. How can you say not to a face (and skin) like that? Let’s hope she wins by a landslide!

Caron Poudre Libre Classique Review and a Video!

October 23, 2008
Caron La Poudre Libre Classique in Gitane ($45)

Everything that comes in that magical little box.

Years ago, Caron invented a unique world-class manufacturing process for its powders. Natural ingredients are ground, blended and sifted several times to achieve an outstandingly fine, lightweight texture. Developed in a state-of-the-art workshop, Caron face powder is recommended by dermatologists, chosen by the most discerning women and used by professional make-up artists for its long-lasting effects. It is sweetly scented with the fragrance of natural Bulgarian Rose, distilled by the in-house perfumer.

“Classic,” the formula that gave Caron face powder its legendary reputation, provides excellent coverage and a unifying, mattifying finish for normal or combination skin. It is ideal fora sophisticated, natural “powdered” look.

Such a lovely sifter…clumps begone!

For reference I’m MAC NW 15-20ish, and Gitane works rather perfectly for my skintone. After typing up that little blurb above for you guys I feel like there’s nothing really left for me to say about this powder! It’s beautifully finely milled and oh so light, and no matter how much of this stuff I apply to my face I can hardly tell that it’s there.

While this powder can be used similarly to a mineral foundation since it can provide anywhere from light to medium coverage, I still prefer to use Gitane as a finishing powder simply because I love the look of a flawless complexion and I have stubborn redness in my cheeks. And Gitane really does work wonders for making my skin look absolutely perfect-even, smooth, and soft. Plus after powdering up with my Caron products, I smell great to boot!

I will say that for those of you with very very dry complexions, Caron’s classic formulations may dry your skin out a tad as they are “powdery,” but their Translucent formulas would probably be perfect for you!

So rather than go into a long spiel about how this stuff is meant to be applied using Caron’s swansdown puff (Diane kindly explained the whole process to me multiple times), I’ve made a (not so great) video showing the whole process. Please don’t laugh this is the first time I’ve attempted to edit a video, and I did the best that I could!

Related Posts:
See my review of Caron’s Powder Base, Foundation, and Venitienne Powder here.
Check out the heavenly photos from my Caron boutique visit here.
Read my review of the wonderful fluffy downiness that is Caron’s swansdown puffs here.

A Brief Review of Some of My Caron Extras: Powder Base, Foundation, and Venitienne Loose Powder

October 23, 2008
Caron Sous Poudre (Powder Base) and Le Teint (foundation) in Shade 05

Souse Poudre: Caron‘s Sous Poudre/Powder Base is a light white-hued cream-textured primer of sorts. It mattifies and smooths out the complexion while helping Caron’s powders to adhere better to the skin for a more flawless finish. I really enjoyed the smooth and silky feel of this-it glided beautifully over my skin and left a slightly dewy finish without the feel of silicone. Click over to this post and you can see the beautiful jar that it comes in the fifth photo down: it’s the jar with the white top way in the back on the right. At $45 I’d say it’s rather decently priced and may have to be a holiday indulgence for me.

Le Teint: When Diane gave me a sample of Caron’s foundation to test out, I honestly wasn’t expecting to like it at all as I’d never really heard much about them and I tend to be rather particular about my foundations. But color me impressed! Caron‘s Le Teint foundation has an ultra-light, whipped consistency that glides beautifully over the skin (especially with the Souse Poudre underneath), creating a light to medium veil of color that’s perfect for those days when you’re not looking for heavy coverage. I’d say it has the coverage of a tinted moisturizer or a light foundation, although I definitely found that I was able to build more coverage where necessary. It dries to an almost powder finish and is absolutely lovely. This may be another Christmas wish-list item for me!

A dab of Le Teint.

Spread out a little-see how light the texture is?

All blended in!

Caron Poudre Peau Fine in Venitienne: As this is one of Caron’s best-sellers, I couldn’t leave without asking for a small sample to test out! Venitienne is a finely milled pink powder with tiny reflective gold bits and Caron’s classic Bulgarian rose scent that makes a rather amazing finishing powder for evening. The pink essentially disappears into your skin, leaving you with a brightened, glowing complexion akin to the effect of La Mer’s Tranlucent powder. I was a little intimidated by just how pink this looked in the sifter, but it’s really something special on and I feel like I may need a full-sized version.

Related Posts:
Check out the heavenly photos from my Caron boutique visit here.
Read my review of the wonderful fluffy downiness that is Caron’s swansdown puffs here.

ABS’ Jill Stuart Wishlist

October 22, 2008
Thanks to Taryn‘s latest amazing package to me, which included this gorgeous Jill Stuart eyeshadow palette, I’ve developed a massive Jill Stuart cosmetics lemming! I know that they’ll be launching in the US in a matter of a few short months (or so they say), but it’s just so hard to wait when there are so many gorgeous products that I’m dying to get my hands on. Luckily (or unluckily) the rather exorbitant prices are these products easier to resist.

Here are the items that are at the top of my wishlist:

Jill Stuart Cleansing Oil
I love my SK-II cleansing oil, but the frilly girly packaging of this Jill Stuart cleansing oil and its fruity aroma make this a must-have! The pricing on this one isn’t too bad (it’s currently on sale) so I may just need to order this as an early Christmas gift to myself.

Jill Stuart Solid Pore Essence
This product is literally calling my name with that big “J” engraved on the top.

Jill Stuart Lip Balm

Jill Stuart Blush Powder

Jill Stuart Loose Powder

Jill Stuart Facial Soap

Jill Stuart Blush Compact

Jill Stuart Softening Fluid

Two Happy MAC Twins…Before One Got Adopted Away

October 22, 2008

So before Manish Arora got adopted away (this was pretty much right after this FOTD) I thought it’d be fun to take a little family photo of the twins!

Of course I was sad to see her go but I wanted her to be with someone that would give her the love and attention that she deserved! They were so cute together though… =*(

A look back at the happy time (yes singular!) we had together:

But it was all for the best! She’s now happy and appreciated!

Don’t forget to enter my Manish Arora Pink Manish Giveaway here!

Related Posts:
See my Manish Arora for MAC swatches here.
See my MAC DressCamp swatches here.