Thursday, July 3, 2014

My all time favorite products, swatches and review.

If you open my closet, you'll be surprised to see that most of the items I own are brand new with tags still on them. When I am getting dressed to go somewhere I usually tend to reach for the "old" clothes. I stick to whatever I have previously worn that I find cute and comfortable. It's not like food or makeup, clothes don't expire so I usually put off wearing my new items. I think that is why I am a skeptic and don't really like to try any new products with over the top claims. The cosmetic industry is constantly trying to renovate itself by hiring beautiful spokespeople and paying for advertiseing.  It's not likely that a cosmetic company is going to conjure up a magical formula that quickly and effectively eliminated pores, wrinkles, or discoloration. I advise anyone you to read the ingredients list on any cosmetic product that you want to try, before taking the plunge on purchasing it. I'm a savy shopper and I always try to look for reviews before trying something new. Now, I'm not saying every new product out there won't live up to its potential, but be a wise consumer. On to the review. 

I have been using Queen Helens Mint Julep Masque for 2 years on and off. I had read great reviews on it and I decide to give it a try, but I wasn't impressed the first few times. Maybe my expectations were too high or maybe I was using an excessive amount of products but I didn't see the big deal. I started using it again consecutively this year and I am happy to announce I have jumped on the bandwagon! I usually apply it all over my face after I have removed my makeup and leave it on for up to an hour. It does a great job in helping my skin look radiant and slightly helps dry up any pimples I might have.

Witch hazel is amazing! There is the original Dickinson's with hazel, which can usually be found in the first aid asile, and the one I use, pictured below, which can be found in the skincare aisle. To my understanding they are both for skin use and used to remove excess oil, but the original Dickinson's witch hazel has antiseptic purposes. This stuff is truly amazing. I use it before and after I clean my face. If you are not using a toner, I highly encourage that you do. Witch hazel is for sensitive skin and I can almost guarantee that it won't irritate your skin. I suggested it to one of my coworkers with pretty sensitive skin and she has already purchased her second bottle. The reason I think it's important that you use a toner is because your daily cleanser simply can't remove all the makeup and dust your skin collects. Even if you don't use makeup often, your face can still pick up dirt from your daily activities and even from your pillow. It's simple to use too. All you need to do is a pour a little on a cotton ball or cotton pad and watch the dirt disappear. That last line sounded like an infomercial. 

The Almay waterproof eye makeup remover is another one of my all time favorite products. Sometimes I love to go ham on my eyes and pack on the waterproof liner, mascara, and dark eyeshadow. Removing it was tedious and my lashes used to fall out because of the harsh rubbing motions I had to do to remove everything. I have the Almay waterproof and oilfree cotton pads and liquid formula and they all work great. All I do is pour some liquid on a cotton ball and everything just melts away. It doesn't burn or sting when if it gets inside my eyes which is also a plus. I have tried almost all of the St. Ives face washes and scrubs and I love them all. This one is the blemish control one and it is my absolute favorite face wash because it's cheap, it has 2% salacylic acid (acne fighting ingredient), and it works like a charm. It's a scrub with gentle beads that help exfoliate your skin and it smells good. It tends to sell out quickly so I always stock up on it. There are many generic versions of this product but I prefer this one because it doesn't have an exaggerated scent and the texture of the beads are perfect. 

For mascara I use a multitude of different brands. I love anything by L'oreal and Maybelline.  I usually build up and layer my mascara, and the L'oreal voluminous is a classic. The brush is soft and thick. The formula is also perfect, it's not too oily and it dries fast enough. For liquid eyeliner I love the Milani infinite liquid eyeliner. It's affordable ($5-$7) and if It gets inside your eyes it doesn't sting. It's easy to apply. I don't like the brush for winging out my eyeliner because it can clump up and I find it too flimsy, but nevertheless it's a great product. 

The Wet n Wild H20 waterproof liquid eyeliner is too good for its own good. This stuff is magic. It's supe pigmented, it lasts up to 8 hours, and it just won't budge. I don't recommend using the h 20 version because it's a pain to remove. Unless you have the amazing Almay eye makeup remover I mentioned earlier, then good luck removing it . I can't stress how this formula just doesn't budge!  I swatches the liquid liner below and you can see how after trying to wash it with soap it wouldn't budge at all. Try it for yourself, you will love this and love the price more because it's about $3.29. 

The Milani lipsticks are one of the best lipsticks you will find. They cost about $4.99 and there are over 20 colors to chose from. I have been neglecting all my other lipstick this month because I am obsessed with the shade #43. I never know what I am going to wear, much less what color my eyeshadow or blush will be, and this color is great because it's such a pretty nude/mixed pink color. It just looks effortless but can help you pull of any look. It has a great scent and it's creamy and surpsingly, it doesn't dry out my lips. It lasts up to 4 hours if I don't eat anything during that time frame. 

The Rimmel Stay Matte foundation has replaced my Revlon color stay foundation. Let me tell you, I love that foundation. They are both full coverage and lasts an uncanny amount of time. I live that the Rimmel stay matte foundation doesn't settle into my pores as much as the Revlon color stay one does. It has a smooth and creamy texture. It can seem thick when you first squeeze some out of the tube but it blends beautifully. It stays true to its name and has a matte finish. It lasts a good 8 hours for me with a transulscent setting powder. Thank you Rimmel for this foundation, and I am not over exaggerating. 

The last two products are a no brainer, benzoyl peroxide and chapstick. I usually use the clean and cleat persagel 10 but it was sold out and and I opted for this Clearasil cream that has the same active ingredient, Benzoyl Peroxide 10%. I have been using this product for over 5 years and it has been so good to me and my troublesome acne prone skin. My skin has remained stable, the past year and a half, but this is and product I continue to use nightly. It's great for anyone dealing with mild to severe acne because it dries blemish up effectively.  Last product is chapstick. I use it every day especially if I am going to put on lipstick and it helps my lips stay soft regardless what lipstick I use. Thank you for reading.  Pictures and swatches below.

(Left)foundation blended and (right) foundation unblended.
My arm turned red because I tried so hard to wash off the Wet n Wild h20 eyeliner.