Archive for the 'gadgets' Category

Lancome Oscillation PowerFoundation Review & Swatches

December 3, 2009
Lancôme ‘Ôscillation Powerfoundation’ Micro-Vibrating Polishing Mineral Make-up SPF 21 ($48)

When Lancome’s new Ôscillation Powerfoundation hit the market I think we all let out a collective groan, wondering if we really needed yet another gimmicky product that wouldn’t deliver on its promises. Well thankfully Lancome has obviated that concern by bringing us a product that actually delivers! Despite some flaws, this powder is quickly approaching holy grail status for me.

Check out the full review and tons of photos after the jump!

The Good: Apparently the beauty world really was in need of a vibrating mineral powder applicator as I can’t imagine being without mine. Now you all know I’m not a big fan of mineral makeup, and while I don’t know how much I love Lancome’s Oscillation PowerFoundation as a stand-alone foundation powder, as a setting powder it’s really second to none (except maybe maybe my La Mer loose powder).


The 7,000 micro-vibrations per minute break down the powder so that it seems to almost melt into the skin, providing a truly seamless finish that just disappears into your complexion. You’ll never look powdery or overly made up using PowerFoundation, and as an added bonus, the micro-vibrations in conjunction with the minerals in the foundation provide your skin with mini-massages during each use, making for softer, smoother, healthier skin in the long run.

As for the flocked applicator – it’s bouncy, soft, holds and distributes the product well, and really is all-around pretty great. Coupled with the beautiful powder formula (think light, airy, yet slightly creamy with light to medium coverage and up to 14 hour wear) Lancome Oscillation PowerFoundation is a winner in my book.

The Not So Good: Of course no product is perfect, and Oscillation PowerFoundation is no exception. My main gripe is the fact that I couldn’t find a shade to match my complexion – Beige 10 (which I got) is way too yellow, and Ivory 10 was much too white. Luckily the powder is fine enough that I can get away with wearing it, but I’d love to have a shade that actually matches my skintone. The other gripe? The fact that you can’t wash these puffs – I’ve been using mine for weeks and it’s starting to look a little gunky and nasty, and while Lancome has been promising to bring us replacement heads at some point, I want them now! =P

The Verdict: Lancome’s Oscillation PowerFoundation tends to be a little too sheer for me to use as a stand-alone foundation, but layer it over some liquid foundation, let it work its complexion-smoothing wonder and you’ll have some serious magic on your hands. It smooths down even a rough liquid foundation application job and wears beautifully without oxidizing. At $48 it’s pretty pricey for the 0.28 oz of foundation that you get, but if you can afford the splurge do check it out!

I purchased this product myself at Bloomies, especially to review for you! You know I can’t resist trying all the latest and greatest gimmicky products!

Quickie Baby Quasar Update #1

April 26, 2009

I’m usually not one to admire my own handiwork, but I have to say that I love this photo I took of the Baby Quasar. But all self-aggrandizement aside, it’s finally time to update you on my preliminary experiences with this petite little wand of miracles, which I introduced you to HERE.

First comes my guilty confession: I haven’t been using this nearly as regularly as I should be because I’m lazy and just can’t seem to muster up the energy to spend 36 minutes holding the Baby Quasar up to my face some nights. BUT even with the limited use this has been receiving, I can without a doubt say that the Baby Quasar is pretty amazing.

So what am I loving so far? Well I haven’t been using the Baby Quasar long enough to see the full-range of results (check out more info on the product site HERE), but this device is unparalleled for zapping away pesky pimples and eradicating cystic acne at its source. I was warned that the Baby Quasar might initially cause a few breakouts as it attempts to normalize your sebaceous glands (resulting in unclogged and tightened pores), and I did notice a few minor bumps, but when I used this on this monster I had forming on my chin, it literally dried it up overnight and it never came to a head.

I also have some acne scarring on my chin due to a spurt of massive breakouts I experienced a few months back, and the Baby Quasar has definitely helped to fade those so that they’re much less visible. I’m confident that with regular usage they’ll quickly disappear.

Not so much: Well pretty much just the fact that the whole process is a bit time-consuming, but who ever said it was easy to be beautiful? 🙂

How to use: You basically split your face into six sections like so:

So Step 1 is to move the Baby Quasar over each sectioned off area for 2 minutes at either the low frequency (orange LED) setting for sensitive skin, or the high frequencey (red LED) setting for normal skin. So after you’ve completed that process ( = 12 minutes), you repeat the treatment a second time using the continuous wave (green LED) or high frequency settings. Once you’re done, you can go back over special areas of concern for an additional two minutes.

When I’m done using my Baby Quasar for the night, I notice that my skin looks smoother, plumper, and just healthier. But I really noticed a difference when I tried the Quasar on my mom–after doing half her face, there was a marked difference. I can’t wait to see the cumulative results of weeks of light therapy!

A Baby (Quasar That Is) To Call My Very Own!

April 8, 2009
Baby Quasar ($449)

Guess who finally got her greedy little hands on one of these miracle-working (from what I’ve heard) Baby Quasars? Me!!! I’ve been counting down the days, waiting for this Baby to arrive on my doorstep, and it’s here at last.

For those of you who don’t recall, I featured the Baby Quasar in my 2008 Holiday Gift Guide as being a great splurge for that beauty & gadget lover in your life.

What Does It Do? Priced at $449, hopefully quite a bit! The Baby Quasar is a skincare tool that employs various light wavelengths (amber, red and infrared) to stimulate the production of collagen, smoothing fine lines and wrinkles, diminishing discoloration, fading scarring, reducing pore size, increasing blood flow and circulation, and clearing acne ~ and from the buzz I’ve read on this product, it really delivers.

While I don’t really have any wrinkles to speak of (knock on wood), I do have a bit of discoloration and some enlarged pores that I’d love to see improved upon. I’ll be testing this product out on myself, of course, and also using it on my mother to see how this works for us.

Stay tuned for updates! I’m hoping to report back with fabulous results! And since I’ve read that this device can also be used to relieve pain, I may just test it out on my snowboarding bruises as well :).

Been Looking For An Affordable Clarisonic Alternative?

February 19, 2009

I’m signed up for New York Magazine’s Best Bets Daily newsletter, and a month or so ago I received this e-mail update that I’ve been meaning to share with you on Pretika’s SonicDermabrasion Facial Brush. Here’s the blurb:

“You may have heard of the Clarisonic skin-care brush, which has racked up raves from tons of women’s magazines and scored a 2008 “Best of Sephora” designation from the national beauty chain. Great product, but it’s $195. Venerable gadget retailer Brookstone, sensing opportunity, recently started selling a cheaper competitor, the SonicDermabrasion Facial Brush. Like the Clarisonic, the Brookstone brush (made by a company called Pretika) looks a little iffy at first, because you automatically assume the brush head spins, like some sort of bathtub-scrubbing device, which would be scary and harsh. But the bristles don’t spin, they just gently pulsate in place hundreds of times per second—using the same high-frequency technology behind the sonic toothbrushes we here at Best Bets Daily are so fond of—to, basically, vibrate the dirt off of your skin and out of your pores. We’ve tested them both, and they’re eerily similar in design and function; both come with a charging stand/cradle, and both make your skin feel gently cleansed and exfoliated (low-cost, noncomedogenic drugstore cleansers like Cetaphil work best with these devices), like you just got a mini-facial. (By the way, Pretika recently upgraded its recharging technology; earlier versions of this brush apparently ran out of juice pretty quickly, but we didn’t find that to be a problem.) The main difference: Brookstone’s brush is a quarter of the cost.”

I absolutely love my Clarisonic Skincare Brush, but I know that at $195 it’s not for everybody–but for $50 how can you go wrong? Based on the reviews Pretika sounds to be up to par with the Clarisonic, so if you’ve been dying to try the Clarisonic but just couldn’t stomach the price, definitely check this out (and come back and tell us all about it of course)!

Clarisonic Skincare Brush System Review

September 29, 2008
Clarisonic Skincare Brush ($195)


I purchased my Clarisonic Skincare Brush pretty much right around when it was first released way back when, and to be honest I didn’t love it so much at the time. I don’t know if it was simply that I was too lazy to use it, or that the brush heads that I was using didn’t work for me, but whatever the reason I used it on and off for a few weeks and then it just sat there for well over a year, unloved and essentially forgotten.

In the meantime I kept purchasing the various Clarisonic brush heads (they need to be replaced every three months or so with regular use, and run $25) as they were released-first the normal, then the sensitive, and finally the delicate. A few weeks ago I got this urge to pick my Clarisonic up again, and it’s been love ever since!

The brush claims to give your skin a deep clean (it oscillates more than 300 times a second), to clarify, reduce the appearance of lines/wrinkles and pores, amongst a multitude of other things, and it really does deliver! I’m not saying you’re miraculously going to have smooth poreless skin (if only), but with everyday use you will notice that your pores have a tighter more toned appearance, and you skin will be as soft as a baby’s bottom.


My brush head of choice is the delicate (pictured above). I tend to toggle between the high and low power settings, because on low I always feel that I don’t get a deep enough clean, whereas on high my skin can become a little irritated, even using the delicate brush head!


The cons? It’s rather bulky/heavy and so a bit cumbersome to use, but that may have something to do with the fact that the brush is entirely waterproof and so safe for shower use, which is definitely a plus! And of course the price is a major deterrent!

Would I recommend this product? Absolutely if you have an extra $200 or so lying around! Since I’ve started using this on a daily basis my skin has never looked better-my pores look tighter, my complexion is brighter and clearer, and my skin really is so ridiculously soft. And there’s also a marked difference in terms of how the rest of my products absorb into my skin after using this.

Stop by your local Sephora or Nordstrom to check this out! It’s available in a range of great shades (black, blue, white, pink) and with all the Friends and Family events coming up, may make a great splurge purchase! Now if only I had it in pink…

RATING: 4.5/5