Sunday, August 25, 2013

Empties #3



I have managed to use up quite a few products between the months of July & August. Some will be repurchased, while others I am just happy to get ride of, not many of those though!!

Starting from the left side of this mess I have two empty packages of the Simple Cleansing Facial Wipes. These have been my favorite makeup wipes of the ones I have tried. Generally I don't usually have to go in with a toner or makeup remover for my face makeup after using these, but I sometimes still have to follow up on some traces of eye makeup. These wipes have no scent and they leave my skin feeling refreshed and clean. In case you are wondering, I still wash my face at night after using these just to give my skin a good cleanse after. However, some nights when its been a long day/night I might just forgo a wash and stick with these.

Regardless of the type of day I've had, I find I've been reaching for my Boot Expert Sensitive Gentle Refreshing Toner more and more. As gross as this might sound to some people, I have actually stopped washing my face in the morning. (I'll let you recover... okay moving on.) With my dry skin I can't afford to strip my face of oils so frequently, but I recognize that I need to still clean it somehow. So instead of going though a full oil stripping session with face wash I have resorted to a toner to I help to balance my skin, but still provide a soap free/basic/detergent free method. Also per my face wipe use above, if I have a heavier makeup day or just feel the extra use to cleanse my skin I will use this toner after, not always, but definitely in the morning!

The next few items were received in some of my past birchboxes. I did not find anything particularly amazing about these products, but it suppose it was nice to be able to try them out and figure out there are other better alternatives. I enjoyed using my Sprout Lip Balm which was cocoa flavored, but it didn't top my EOS or blistex ones, also at being priced at $4.00 and not available expect for online didn't convert me over. The next item is the Number 4 Clarifying Shampoo. I was excited to try this when I first received it, but it turned out to be a lack luster product. This is a concentrate shampoo, so your hair must be thoroughly soaked to adequately distribute the product. After you master this it acts much in the same way as Neutrogena's Anti-Residue Shampoo Shampoo, just a more expensive alternative.


The last birchbox item of this lot is the Beauty Protector Protect & Detangle. This multifunction leave-in mist claims to provide moisturize, detangle, add shine, reduce frizz, amongst many other benefits. Did I see these? Well, my hair felt very brittle and dry after using. I don't have a major problem with frizz so I didn't see a noticeable difference. All in all, I did not see this as being a miracle or wonder product. I have been using the It's a 10 leave-in since finishing this and it is amazing! *Mini review* Since using the It's a 10 my hair has been really soft and feels uber moisturize. I don't see that many split ends any more and the scent isn't too overwhelming, unlike the Beauty Protector which reeks of coconut.


How long does it take you to use up a nail polish? It takes me ages, I know I have some really old ones... however, I find that I run through top coats extremely fast. So I just about finished two! I'm not sure of one of the brands, it was from a friend that worked at a nail salon. The other I am fully aware of the brand, it's OPI's top coat, which I have since repurchased.


These last two products are staples in my daily routine. I purchased a travel size version of my beloved Redken Guts 10 volume spray foam back in March and used it up on a recent overnight trip. I am surprised how long this travel size lasted me, as it is quite a lot smaller than the full. It you are unfamiliar then let me explain it's awesomeness. This is a weightless volumizing spray mousse, adding volume precisely where you want it without feeling like there is product in your hair. It's flexible, provides a lasting natural volume.

Lastly I tried, fell in love with, and used up the Nivea Touch of Smoothness Moisturizing Body Wash. I have dry skin and this leave my skin soft and smooth after a shower, not tight or stripped of oils. This does have a scent, which I generally don't like having, but I don't find the smell to be over whelming. So I can deal with that. Light scents are fine just not bold ones.

Alas, those are my empties for the months of July & August. Have you tried any of these products? What did you think of them if you have?

XOXO,
Carolyn

Monday, August 19, 2013

Faith, Trust, & Pixie Dust?

If only that were true, I found this nice saying while out on a stroll one day to a very magic place... 

Today is the first day of my graduate classes. Sitting through a three day orientation last week made me a bit nervous and excited about the classes I have been enrolled into. I know everything will work out in the end, but I am just seeing everything as a narrow path for now. Regardless, I'll be working hard to get to my goals for how ever long they might take.

I wish you all a lovely week and the best in what you need to accomplish!

Until next time, hopefully soon!

XOXO,
Carolyn


Monday, August 12, 2013

Recent Purchases


I hope you are all doing fantastically! As I described in a previous post, this past month has been incredibly busy, as will August, but that will be over soon enough. Right? (Silence ensues across the land. "Nooooo!")

You'd think I'd like L'Oreal or something. 

I picked up a few L'Oreal products I've been wanting to experiment with. I recall using the L'Oreal True Match Super Blendable Makeup in high school and I cannot recall why I stopped. It's amazing, you just have to find the tone that suite your skin tone as this range comes in Cool, Neutral, and Warm (Totally ambiguous, I know). I also nabbed up some of these fantastically pigmented L'Oreal Colour Caresse Wet Shine Stain. I find that using a lip liner underneath lets the true color represented in the tube come to light, as they can take on a deeper and more red tone.

Sheet Masks!

When I was at the local Korean shopping mart I picked up a couple of face masks from The Face Shop. I have yet to try these, but I am beyond excited. The pearl mask is supposedly good for reducing the appearance of blemishes, while the hyaluronic acid containing mask is supposed to pump up and increase the appearance of moisture the skin. We shall see!

Obligatory Sephora birthday pick up.

This is such a great birthday gift from Sephora and Benefit. Both items are of incredible quality. I love how real my lashes look after using this mascara. The highlighter is up to par too, adding the perfect amount of light reflective particle without too much shine or glitter. More on these later. :)

A Beauty Blender?

I'm not sure what the particular hype is over the beautyblender. I used it with a few of my foundations so far and nothing really screams "I'm the best applicator ever created for a flawless airbrushed look." Maybe I'm not using it correctly. (Per directions I am, honestly!) Regardless, I'm still going to try and perfect the technique with this, who knows, but I'm glad I did NOT pay full price for this. I used my left over Birchbox points so I at least got some use out of them before they were expired as I was no longer going to acquire anymore after canceling my subscription!

Well that's all for now, good night all!

XOXO,
Carolyn

Saturday, August 3, 2013

The Mary Kay Look

I'm back! Well, sort of... I'm still miserably swamped in my course work.

The other week I was shipped a box containing some goodies from Mary Kay through the Influenster program for consideration and to try out.







Of the products I received in this box I only have two that I'm not the biggest fan of, the brush and the lipstick. The True Dimension Lipstick has an interesting concept for the packaging: the actual tube of lipstick pops/clicks down out of the outer tube (How convoluted does that sound? Sorry!). It's a cool trick, but I didn't too much that was revolutionary in the product itself. However, that said the pigment itself is lovely and it glides on nicely. As for the brush, I found it to be a bit on the flimsy, maybe a few more fibers would help in color application, especially as this is suited for the cream color eye shadows!

What I did like in this box were the two mascaras and the cream eye color. Let us first examine the cream color. The shade I received, Violet Storm, is a beautiful reflective purple tone. This cream shadow is very creamy and soft upon application and sets rather quickly with no creasing. I've been wearing it almost everyday and it I find it has incredible staying power, lasting all day. There are other colors available, brown, green, blue, pink, and tan. Any of these would provide a great base for any eye look.

For a complete eye I find mascara is essential. I was thrilled to find a lash primer in this box, as I've never tried one. The premise of an lash primer is to increase the longevity of the mascara, if you choose to wear one, and to nourish and protect the lashes. Having no experience with trying a lash primer prior to trying this one, I don't know how much merit my opinion will hold, but I have enjoyed using it! What I can discuss without any reservation is the lengthening mascara. I found this mascara to be a true lengthening formula that was long lasting, without flaking, not to mention it did not clump!

Hopefully you found this to be informative. I am ecstatic to be selected for the Mary Kay Glam program through Influenster. I have only ever tried one lipgloss from Mary Kay and that was over 8 years ago. I'm glad to be re-introduced.
 **Mary Kay® provided these 
complimentary products through 
Influenster for me to try**

XOXO,
Carolyn