Thursday, February 19, 2009

What I am currently using...

I tagged myself. lol

Shampoo: Avon Advanced Techniques Volume& Texture shampoo. Honestly, I don’t like these products much because they don’t add volume at all, I would even rephrase their name “flatness & extreme straightness”! lol I like the smell though…:)

Conditioner: Avon Advanced Techniques Volume& Texture conditioner

Styling products: Currently I don’t use any though I have few products “just in case”.:)

Hair mask: none

Shower gel: Rexona Activshower 2 in 1 “Freshness & care”. LOVE! My 20+ something bottle!:)

Body moisturiser: Body Shop Strawberry body butter. I liked my Coconut butter WAAAY more but I HAVE to finish this one! Almost there! lol Btw, it smells like strawberry jam, too sweet.

Deodarant: I use 3 at the moment (not at once obviously! lol): Lancome Bocage (pretty good), LUSH Coconut Deodorant powder (nice smell, but doesn’t do much honestly) and Aroma Cream (it works! like this one a lot but there are days it irritates my skin!:( )

Fake tan: Garnier Ambre Solaire “No trace Bronzer”

Cleanser: Sebamed Clear Face Cleansing bar. Smells so good!:)

Eye makeup remover: L’oreal Demaq’ expert Cashmere milk intensive make-up remover. Gotta get my 3rd “bottle”!:)

Exfoliator: None at the moment. *on a quest*

Primer: GOSH Velvet Touch Foundation Primer. Smooth application but isn’t long-lasting unfortunately.

Foundation: Max Factor Lasting Performance

Foundation brush: mmm… fingers! lol

Concealer: I use Max Factor Pan Stik instead :.:)

Powder: Maybelline Pure mineral loose powder foundation

Blusher: Avon Colour face pearls in pink for every day use, Bourjois Rose D’or for “night out”.

Bronzer: Don’t use…

Highlighter: Don’t use…

Eyeshadow base: UDPP

Eyeshadows: “88 palette from China” :)

Eyeliner: Black shadow!:)

Eyelash curler: Don’t use…

Eyelash base: Don’t use…

Mascara: CoverGirl Lashblast mascara. Maybelline Lash Stylist is WAY better!

Lipstick: Avon Pro-To-Go Nude Peach looks gorgeous. Thinking of buying this shade in full size or find a dupe from some other brand.

Lipgloss: Dior Addict Ultra Gloss Reflect in 347/Raffia orange. LOVE!

Nail colour: Currently wearing “baby pinkish-purplish” Rimmel Wear Maxx in 283 Pure Sin + Isa Dora Wonder Nail in 620 Sparkling Diamonds on top. Don’t like this colour very much though. It’s still on without a single chip from Valentine’s Day!:) My favourite shade is Rimmel Lasting Finish in 119 All Spice.

My little but lovely lipsticks/lip glosses collection :)

Finally I managed to make a couple of decent pictures. I usually take pictures of nature, people and architecture monuments but makeup… this is my first experience.:) You've got to see my hubby's facial expression when he was copying these pictures from our camera. LOL

Note: I didn't take a picture of my 20 bullet-like AVON lipstick testers cause they're sooo small.:)

I've never been a fan of collecting makeup items as I'm very aware of those "expiration dates". I like the feeling of satisfaction when I see that some of my few lippies "take a last breath with their last dip". LOL There were days I repurchased the same shade several times! Can you imagine this?:) Now I'm more into experimenting but I still prefer to have several versatile shades and be able to mix those to get even more shades. This is when my 20 bullet-like AVON testers come into force.:)

So here are my heroes that don't and will never feel "still full but spoiled" LOL:

From L-R from Bottom to Top: Dior, Bourjois, GOSH, Max Factor, Avon palette; Rimmel Nude Pink, Deborah, Rimel Dare

1,2. Rimmel Lasting Finish in shades 001 Nude Pink and 061 Dare. My little tricks: Usually I put Nude Pink on my bottom lip and Dare on my upper lip (hence they are of different shapes!:) ) and then mix them together – this shade goes perfectly for my everyday a la "no makeup" look.:) I use Dare with Blistex gloss on top for my evening look. Nude pink is a perfect neutraliser for any dark shade! Though I never use Nude pink alone as it seems too pale on me.

3. Deborah Hydrocolor Shine in shade Grape. It's a tinted lip balm actually. Extremely sheer burgundy colour, looks very natural. The grapey smell is a bit strong but surprise-surprise I like it!:)

Swatches from L-R: Deborah, Rimmel Nude Pink, Rimmel Dare

samples (from nudes to bright reds, purples and browns – the one I wouldn't normally buy full-size as I don't like this kind of colours):
Avon Youth-awakening 5 bullet-like lipstick testers/samples

Avon Pro-To-Go 4 bullet-like samples. Frozen Rose and Nude Peach are gorgeous! I'm thinking of ordering those in full size but I'm not a fan of Avon so I'm hoping to find some dupes somewhere. Nude Peach looks like something in between MAC HK Cute Ster and Creamsheen Shy girl. Let's see…

Avon Ultra Color Rich 11 samples. I like Frozen Rose which is quite similar to the one from Pro-To-Go but I think the latest is prettier and has more shimmer.:)

Lip glosses:
1. Dior Addict Ultra Gloss Reflect in shade 347 Orange Raffia. This is my all-time favourite lip gloss ever! I love the shade and the consistency. Extremely long-lasting and non-sticky!

2. Max Factor Silk Gloss Sheer Frost in shade 370 Cinnamon Glow. My favourite nude shade so far. It's also perfect for neutralising bright shades. The smell is delicious! Vanilla chocolate!

3. Bourjois Eau de Gloss Cosmic in shade 21 Cappuccino Ice. I don't like this shade and the smell is too fruity and strong which I hate! But the consistency is very nice and it feels very refreshing on my lips. I mix it with my Rimmel lipstick or with a bunch of Avon testers in order to make this shade work for me.

4. GOSH Star Shine lip glaze in shade Boogie Star. Extremely sheer! Good for neutralising and mixing with other lipsticks.

5. Avon 8 in 1 lip gloss palette in Pinks. I was very skeptical when I first saw it and… guess what? Yep, smelled it! The smell is kind of plastic! BUT! They appeared to be amazing and what's most important for me they're absolutely fragrance-free when applied! I like this palette a lot! All shades are versatile and buildable (from very sheer to the "full coverage"). I especially love the 1st and 4th (counting from the left), peachy and peachy pink shades. AND they're surprisingly long-lasting and non-sticky!

Swatches from L-R: Dior, Max Factor, GOSH, Bourjois

The END :)

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Carole Maggio "Facercise: The Dynamic Muscle-Toning Program for Renewed Vitality and a More Youthful Appearance"

I love SHAPE magazine, I've been a loyal reader since 2002. I usually read it from cover-to-cover seriously, except for the bunch of advertisements, and… exercises… my little confession.:) Two years ago there was a very good article on how to look young longer, with a recommendation of this book at the end. So I bought this book, run through all the pages, understood the whole idea, and then put it away as all those "facercises" are recommended for those "over 25 y.o.". Hmmm, feeling old now, LOL.:) Later when I discovered the famous youtube makeup community I suddenly remembered about this book.:) The reason of that "remembering" was my shock when I saw HOW some ladies apply their creams, foundations, etc. I guess Carole would be in shock as well.:) Let's be very careful with our faces!;)

The book is extremely practical with lots of helpful tips. And remember - those "facercises" are exercises after all.:) Follow the instructions!

*reading it now, but I'll skip the exercises I guess… LOL*

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Short review: Gal Collection Lip Balm

Intro: 15 ml (0,53 oz) glossy "Vaselina/Fragranced balm" in "old style" tins from Madrid (Spain).
Price (in Finland): ¨3,5 EUR
Flavours: violet, red currant, vanilla, peach, orange and strawberry.
Ingredients: Petrolatum, ceresin, paraffin, fragrance, apricot kernel oil, beta-carotene, hydrogenated vegetable oil, sorbitan tristearate, limonene, linalool, C.I. 15850 (Red 7 lake).
Usage: lips, cuticles, dry skin (but not all over your face or body!). I use it only on my lips though...

This balm is my "good morning balm" or whenever I feel I want to smell "sweet&peachy".:) It's also perfect for priming lips before applying lipstick/lip gloss.
Pros: cute packaging, very nice and subtle smell although it's a bit sweet and "vaseline-smell-like" (I have it in "Peach"), great moisturiser, long-lasting, non-sticky, glossy.
Cons: the same thing as for Carmex - packaging is only suitable for "really clean hands" and for "short nails", or brush.

What comes to other tastes, as I smelled all of them before choosing my "Peach"...:) IMHO, vanilla is not even close to vanilla, orange is extremely artificial and sweet, strawberry smells more like strawberry jam rather than fresh strawberry, red currant and violet both have some weird sweet scents - nothing close to my perception of how red currant and violet are supposed to smell like.:/

Conclusion: It's my favourite lip balm ever. I would honestly use just this one, but I have 4 other ones and I'm the kind of weird person who doesn't like to have "never-to-be-used" things if they are not that bad.:) Strange that Gal collection balm doesn't get that much attention as Carmex for instance...

Internet purchases. Pros & Cons

I am quite picky when it comes to face care, colours and most importantly the SMELL. I'm used to the "old manner" of choosing stuff. I mean testing them "face-to-face".:) However recently, when I got completely sucked in by all that makeup lovers community, I discovered a completely new era for me - "ordering makeup from Internet". "Face-to-face" turned into "hear&see the reviews/swatches".:) Sometimes it worked really well, sometimes - not. Here is my short list of only great surprises and disappointments:

1. Carmex moisturising lip balm. It is my "good night" lip balm.:)
Pros: great moisturiser, long-lasting (it is still on when I wake up), non-sticky.
Cons: packaging is only suitable for "really clean hands" and for "short nails", the SMELL (!) is kind of plastic&mint, but it quickly disappears, it tingles for a couple of minutes.

In case you wonder what I mean with "really clean hands" jar, see the picture below. :) Btw, it's my first try to make a picture. More coming soon.:)

2. Coastal Scents stuff (88 eye shadow palette, blushes, brushes, micas, etc.)
Pros: relatively cheap, seem to be of a decent quality, great pigmentation, smooth application, etc.
Cons: some of their products (palettes) are available on Ebay at a lower price! I was in shock when I found out that they are not the manufacturers or creators of these wonderful palettes but just the retailers. Now I'm questioning the quality of these stuff as you never know what are the working conditions of those factories in Hong Kong...:( Additionally, 2 of their brushes "unglued" and they look horrible inside (the glue almost touches the bristles!!!), be aware! It should be referred as "88 palette from Hong Kong" not "from Coastal Scents".

3. Urban Decay Primer Potion
Pros: cute packaging, eye shadows last longer, etc etc
Cons: bad packaging - such a waste of product! There are days UDPP creases! I guess my eyelids can be TOO oily even for UDPP..:/

1. Victoria's secret stuff, including Sweet sugar refreshing body mist in "Sweet sugar", "Love spell" set and "Super model" Edp.
Pros: quite cute packaging, great reviews, nice descriptions of smells...
Cons: SMELL!!!!!!! I absolutely don't like all these smells. They're horrible and nothing like they're described. "Sweet sugar" is TOO sweet&artificial nothing to do with coconut smell! "Love spell" smells like cheapest sweets and baby shampoo from my childhood. Nothing to do with cherry blossom, peach and white jasmine! "Super model" smells like some cheap'n'sweet granny's perfume! I'm glad "SM" is just 7,5 ml! My GREATEST disappointment! I feel so bad my friend had to buy&carry all these stuff from USA.:( Am I too picky or is my sense of smell is so different and weird?!:)

2. CoverGirl Lashblast mascara.
Pros: separates my lashes, smooth application in terms of "messiness" i.e. touching my skin.
Cons: dries too quickly so that I'm struggling a lot when applying the second coat. In case I'm not fast enough it clumps terribly! Doesn't thicken or lengthen comparing to some other mascaras. The package is HUGE! 13,1 ml (0,44 oz)! I can't make it in 3 months! Such a waste!

3. AVON Lash-pro mascara "Jillian Dempsey for Avon"
Pros: VERY cool idea! One big-brush side for upper lashes, another small-brush side with waterproof formula for lower lashes. How smart is that?:) SUPER lengthens! I was in shock, honestly! I've never thought my lashes can be THIS long! I normally don't apply mascara on my lower lashes as my eyes are quite "watery", the small-brush side solved the problem.:)
Cons: It dries out very quickly! It worked perfectly for one week only and now it's horrible - clumps&flakes terribly. Dunno maybe I damaged it somehow...:/

4. Weleda Iris series for normal and combination skin including face cream, facial toner and cleansing lotion.
Pros: the fact that it's natural cosmetics always attracted me although I'm now quite skeptical to all those "ecological", "organic" and "natural" stuffies. I don't trust them anymore. Safe packaging though - glass jars and metal tubes.
Cons: SMELL!!!! I told you I hate all those weird smells. Iris series smell like some medicine (weird, huh?:) ) Too "liquidy"! Didn't do what the company claimed these products should do.

PS Can't stop wondering how we all differ from each other! Miracle!:)

Before and After

I thought it would be interesting and funny to tell how youtube, specktra, mua, blogs, etc affected my perception of "the world of makeup" . Let's begin!:)

Before: First thing to check in the morning - emails and news.
After: Subscription updates on youtube and blogs, then email and news.

Before: Youtube is the place to check movie trailers.
After: It's also the place to check new makeup trends.

Before: What's the point of blushes? I don't need one!
After: These are meant for contouring, for "refreshing" i.e. healthy look, and for just being "natural".

Before: Eye shadows don't last (cause they crease obviously)! I don't need one (although I bought few...)! Primers? What are you talking about?
After: UDPP is magical!

Before: ... (I mean "I had no clue".)
After: blending is VERY important!

Before: Sponge applicators. Brushes for applying eye shadows? Are you kidding me?!
After: Use BRUSHES!!! Seriously, I had no clue they can make such a HUGE difference!

Before: Bobby Brown is a crazy husband of poor Whitney Houston. NARS what?! My friend says MAC foundation is really good.
After: Bobbi Brown (not BobbY!) and NARS are gurus! I am aware of every single collection Nars or MAC have/launch, although I don't have anything from their stuff, but am planning to buy (so pity it's much more expensive here in Finland!). Now 2 of my friends say MAC foundations are super good, but they don't know what or who is NARS. Gotta tell them!..

Before: I should have a maximum of 2 lipsticks, 1 mascara, 1 foundation, 1 etc.
After: There is no such a thing as "too much makeup"! Oh my, I have 5 lip BALMS now! 1 for "good night", 1 for "good morning", 1 in my purse, 1 tinted and 1 "just so". Gotta get more?.. hmm...

I blame you, Youtube and others! LOL

What's your story?:)