Friday, January 28, 2011

My Skin Story, Part 1: Oily Skin & Moisturizers and Primers

So in my last post, I talked a bit about how gross my skin can get, but I though I'd share a more in depth look at my struggles with my skin.

So let's start with oiliness. As far as skin care is considered, I've tried so many "oil-control" products, it's pretty ridiculous.

I've tried Murad Oil Control Mattifier SPF 15, which worked ok, it was one of the first ventures into this world of oil-control. I thought it was a pretty good product, but my face was still very oily by the end of the day.

Another moisturizer I've tried is the Bare Escentuals bareVitamins Skin Rev-er Upper. That stuff was not as great as the Murad stuff, but I liked it enough not to return it, it helped make my face feel matte, but still produced the oils.

When I made a trip to the MAC store quite some time ago (for the Viva Glam Gaga lipglass), I was coerced into trying their Oil Control Lotion and their Pro Longwear SPF 10 Foundation (NC30). Now, when the makeup artist demoed the products on my face, she also used the Prep + Prime Skin as well, but I didn't purchase it. I am curious if I use that plus the other MAC stuff if it will make a big difference? Anyway: when I tried it, it felt nice, it felt like I wasn't wearing anything AND it also felt matte. What I wanted to tell her was that I wanted to stay for another couple of hours so that she could see how crappy my skin is and the oil slick that would have formed...but all in all it worked ok (like the Murad stuff).

The next thing I heard about was the Shiseido Pureness Mattifying Moisturizer Oil Free. I went to Sephora, and for the life of me I couldn't find the Shiseido stuff, so I asked someone, and then I found it, and asked for a sample (the reason why I never got samples of other stuff was because I didn't even know they did that :/), and so the person who helped me also pointed out that Bliss also makes a pretty good oil control moisturizer, so I got a sample of the Bliss Steep Clean Mattifying Lotion. I tried both, and decided since Sephora gave me a $30 gift card, I'll give the Bliss one a try because it seemed to work better, but I didn't really get a good trial because the person at Sephora didn't really give me a whole lot. So I bought myself a full size bottle, too bad I didn't know it was $48!!! At least I had the gift card...right?? Anyway, I have been using that, switching between that and the MAC one, I think the MAC one may be better. I use the Bliss one mostly at night now.

A couple of other noteable mentions in the moisturizer department is the Boscia Oil-Free Daily Hydration SPF 15. I've tried it as a sample size (the ones that come in those sets that Boscia makes a lot), and when it was time for my skincare challenge reward at Sephora, it looked like the only thing my skin would come close to liking. Out of all the products I already mentioned, I really LOVE the packaging on this one. It's in a tube type of thing, but it has a pump, so I can store it anywhere, and would be good for travel too, but there's the convenience of the pump. The actual product isn't that great, I think it made me more oily than some other stuff I've tried, but it was eh... for me. Another moisturizer that wasn't horrible, but not great was the Clean & Clear Finishes Pore Perfecting Moisturizer SPF 15. I didn't really notice any pore minimization, but it was ok, and has SPF 15, so it wasn't bad for my skin.

To talk about makeup primers now. I've tried many. Here's the ones that I have tried that left me quite oily: Smashbox's Photo Finish (original) and Photo Finish Light, MAKE UP FOR EVER's HD Primer (not exactly sure what it was called, but I think it's discontinued now, there's other primers, but I don't think any of them are the one I tried from a 100 point perk), Bare Escentuals bareVitamins Prime Time (I tried it before the oil-control one came out), Urban Decay De-Slick in a Tube Mattifying Gel, MAC Matte, and MAC Skin Refine Zone Treatment. But the stand out one for me was actually the Bare Escentuals bareVitamins Prime Time Foundation Primer Oil Control. I liked it, but I was still oily, so it sat on my conter for a while, and I think this is the reason why when I tried to start using it again, it made my skin peel A LOT! I am pretty sure it didn't do that when I used it the first time. It's on my list of stuff to buy when I have money. However, I found that I think when I mix those two MAC products and put it all over my face, that kind of helps...a little.

Will talk foundation fingers are tired!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Skindinavia No More Shine

Yay!!! I had been eyeing this stuff out for thee longest time, and I finally decided to buy it. It's called No More Shine, and what it is, is a spray that is supposed to set your makeup and give you a matte finish all day. Now I think that I may just be the biggest skeptic about this thing because I have SUPER oily skin.

So I've been using it for a few days, and I must say that I am quite disappointed with its performance. But on the other hand: it has made a slight difference in how my skin does throughout the day. Although it is not the perfect product for me, it still does work. I noticed that my face still gets its early morning shine about a couple hours after I put it on, but after blotting, I notice that it doesn't get as oily throughout the day. My biggest issue is maintenance, I don't blot throughout the day, or touch-up with powder simply because of two things: I don't think it's quite economical (I pay a lot of money for these products, why can't they last all day?), and I am LAZY!!! So I think that will be my next quest in my oily skin solution search I will try...we'll see how it goes.

If my opinion changes, I'll add a bit more to this entry, but for now...if you have extremely oily skin: this may not be the solution you were searching for.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Urban Decay Spring 2011 Collection

In short...looks AWESOME: I think the one product that I really want to try out is the 24/7 Glide-On Shadow Pencils:

These look pretty much like the NYX Jumbo Eyeshadow Pencil, but it notes that they are crease-proof. I will be the judge of that ;) But honestly, the color selection looks kind of weak...they don't have a white, or a flat black (Barracuda has sparkle/glitter/shimmer in it), so that's one thing that kind of disappoints me, but still, this looks like a interesting product to try out. I like using cream shadows to enhance the colors of my powder shadows and if these are crease-proof, I think I will be able to say "good-bye" to cream shadows. Especially when in a pot, those things dry up FAST, so the NYX stuff was good because they don't dry out in their packaging, but bad because if you don't use only a thin layer (on my eyelid at least), theywill crease like crazy.

The next thing that excites me, but I really don't know if I can even afford this is the15-Year Anniversary 24/7 Pencil Set:

This is a set of FIFTEEN of the 24/7 Glide-On Pencils. It includes six new colors, and there's two that I am really excited about: Asphyxia, and Perversion. Now let me warn you, this is basically half of their permanent collection, plus six new (don't know if these will become permanent) colors . I really like the Asphyxia eyeshadow, so I would definitely want to try that pencil, plus I like the fact that they made a black-black (Perversion), that's darker than their award-winning color Zero (haven't actually tried it, but have swatched it in the store, and it never really impressed me in color like the stila kajal eye liner).

Their new pencil brush looks interesting...24/7 Shadow Pencil Blending Brush:

The fibers remind me of the Sigma synthetic face brush fibers. But they say it's made out of the PET bottle plastic, and it's made specifically for blending out the new shadow pencils, but I'm assuming for all your cream based eye products.

And lastly, the Lush Lash System looks pretty interesting:

It's supposed to be a two-part system that helps your lashes grow longer, and thicker. This one is one of those things that I wouldn't scrounge around for money to buy, but if someone gave it to me as a gift, I wouldn't mind ;)

Anyway (so the last one, wasn't so lastly after all), the Afterglow Glide-On Cheek Tint looks interesting too:

Basically cream blush, if it looks good in the store, I may consider getting it. For now...very comfortable with my cream color base, and convertible cheek color I gave myself for Christmas (if you don't know what I'm talking about: read my earlier posts).

So...will be doing some contemplating/splurge-buying probably :) Will update if I get any of these cool stuffs :D

Monday, January 10, 2011

Update on Christmas Presents to Myself

Ok, so after a few uses, I think I have a good first impression on those "gifts" to myself I got after Christmas. I'll put these in my blippy (after a few more uses in them: this is pretty much like a first glance at these), with products I can post for (so probably not the MAC stuff since you can't link that account), so you can look there: I already have other reviews of stuff I've bought from sephora.

I really like using this palette. Its colors are really nice, and come off pretty well. I was a little worried since many of the shadows (especially the ones that I really liked) are a bit small, but you don't need much, especially from the darker colors to get the color off. The only slight downside with this is that the shadows are quite soft, as in when they were pressed, they weren't pressed with a whole ton of pressure, so when you brush off product, you will have a ton that comes off. Hope that makes sense. So, you have to watch out for fallout, and if you store your palette vertically like me (because I have no space)! Another thing, that may or may not be a down side, is that its range of neutral colors isn't that great. Most of them are warmer, bronzy colors, but for me, I was looking more for the actual colors, so I really didn't mind because I have a ton of neutral shadows anyway. All in all I like it, and I recommend it to anyone who is lacking a wide range of colors in their makeup collection. Also, it's still $25 at sephora, it's still available online.

As I mentioned, I looked forward to using the peace sign eye shadow (I found out that that's the name: peace sign...shoulda looked at the sephora site for that before I posted), the kawaii eye shadow, and the sakura convertible color. I like all three of those, and also the sake eyeshadow (a golden/champagne color). I haven't tried shibuya, a royal blue color, but maybe soon. I have to figure out what I could do with it. Like the color wheel, these shadows are a bit soft too, which didn't surprise me because it's also a stila product. Overall, I don't know how great this palette is for like one look because it is marketed to be a take along type thing, but I do like the things in it, and I use them to create looks with other products, so if you're not looking for that portability, then you should look into this. I must warn you that online it is marked as limited edition, so hurry if you are interested.

This was supposed to be one of the best pencil eye liners out in the market. I was quite disappointed in the performance of this stuff after hearing such wonderful things about it. First of all I would like to commend its wonderful color pigmentation. I was using MAKE UP FOR EVER's Aqua Eyes for a while, and I always felt like I wasn't getting a true black on my waterline, so I tried paring it with a gel liner (BUXOM Lashliner), like Marlena (Make Up Geek TV) does, and that worked really well, but I have to use TWO products. When I initially swatched the kajal eye liner, I was impressed with its"black-ness" but noticed that it was creamy (like how others had described it), so that threw me off a bit because the MUFE one is a little harder, which is what I think made it stick to the waterline. So I tried it one day on my waterline, and was immediately impressed by the pigmentation, and how black it was, but by the time I finished my mascara and face makeup, I looked back, and most of it was gone, so I reapplied. I was so horrified that by the end of the day it looked like someone punched me in BOTH of my eyes because the eye liner had melted its way under my eyes :( So the next day I tried it on the waterline again, and this time I set it with a powder eye shadow, not actually on the waterline because things can get a little gross if you put powders there, and I noticed that it did much better than just the eye liner on the water line, but it was still creeping down. This was a little frustrating if you can imagine. So today I have it on my waterline again, and this time I applied it very lightly, but after I finished, I realized, there was no point in doing that because now, the pigmentation isn't as intense as it's supposed to be...anyway: thinking about returning it, but maybe not because it's a good liner to get smudged and stuff, so might keep it around for that. I think I'll stick with my MUFE + BUXOM combo for now.

This is actually from the Stylishly Yours collection. I really liked this color, and was excited to use it as a base for my cheek colors. I have never used a cream color base before, but people have talked about it, and have said that it will help blushes last longer, and what not, and is better than a cream blush, so I bought this one. I would have to say, I'm not really impressed. I'm not super disappointed or anything, but I feel it didn't make too much of a difference when it comes to making my blush last all day, but I really liked the color. I would say if you have a problem with your blushes staying on your face, this might not be the product for you, but if you don't have that big of a problem, give this one a try, I really like the color.

As a side note: I used the cream color base and the stila convertible color from the tokyo palette, and I would have to say the convertible color was better as a "blush base." I have super oily skin (which I will talk about soon), that seems to not be able to hold onto colors easily, so If these two were to battle, convertible color would win in my books, even though it is a bit more expensive ;)

Will update you if my opinion changes!

China Glaze Anchors Away + My Nail Heaven

I posted this on my regular blog right before I started putting beauty things in here, so I'll put a link to that entry. I am really looking forward to this collection, and hope that I can find those colors at Kali's next month!

By the way, for those of you who don't know Kali's Nail Supply, it is thee nail place that I go to for those "high-end" nail polishes, and also for cuticle things too. It's located at 547 Halekauila Street, near Restaurant Row. They have free parking in their lot behind the store. And to also note, they have a monthly sale, on the first Sunday of the month, where you can get 20% off everything you buy...what a DEAL!!! Here's their site: They're really cool people, and easy to talk to. So even licensed professionals get a deal too on these Sunday sales.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Merry Christmas to Myself today I received my Christmas presents I bought for myself. Sephora had this online thing where it was 20% off all their sale items (who woulda thought Sephora would do sales?) so I bought the stila collectible travel palette in trendsetting in tokyo and the color wheel eye shadow palette, also by stila. And I knew it would kill me if I had to pay $6 for shipping AND tax, so I added on the stila kajal eye liner in onyx (black), so I could get free shipping. I am so not like the number 1 stila fan, it was merely coincidence that all of the products I bought were from stila. Anyway, I was actually gonna buy other stuff, then realized I wouldn't do much with them anyway, and after reorganizing my shopping bag, I ended up with just those three products.

I think that color wheel thing was more of a splurge moment for me. The regular price was actually $38, then it went down to $25, and then it was 20% could I resist?? I've seen it in the store, and the shadows looked really nice, but I really couldn't stomach the price, and I do have many other palettes (I have one of the blockbusters, and a 120 palette already, plus other smaller ones), so I used to just admire it from afar, and now I own it. I'll play around with it and will really see how good/bad it is :D

The trendsetting in tokyo was just like the color wheel...but the colors were so pretty ;) The peace color (the name of it is actually a symbol --> the peace sign...the one you do with your fingers --> 2) looks a lot like MAC's black tied. I personally don't own that color, but have used it, and will be looking forward to the stila one. I think the two colors that I was eager about the most was the kawaii eyeshadow (a rosy pink), and the sakura convertible cheek color (a bright pink).

The kajal eye liner has always been in my sights. Always looking for a good eye liner, so hoping this will prove its name that other beauty gurus rave about.

One last thing: a couple days ago I ended up purchasing MAC's cream color base in tickle me pink, which is a really bright pink color. In comparison to the convertible cheek color from the tokyo palette, it's a little more yellow/orange based, where the stila one is more blue/purple based. They had a free shipping thing too, so as you can see I am a total push over when it comes to free shipping...just think about it: it's literally like purchasing something at home without having to leave ;D

Will talk more about these products later. Better get to bed before I am dead tired tomorrow!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Nail Glitter Troubleshooting

For the LONGEST time, I have been in love with glitters for nails, and lately I've been into that gradient/fading glitter on the tips effect, but whenever I attempt to do it, after even a few hours pieces will start to chip off! It just bothers me soooo much!! I am using base coat, and top coat, and it just don't work. I've tried this with many different glitters, and still the same thing keeps happening. I've tried with China Glaze's Nova and Carnival Lights, and OPI's Show It and Glow it and Simmer & Shimmer.

Could it be that my nails are too slippery from buffing them all the time? That would be kinda strange seeing that buffing really helps the finish, but destroys the longevity :/ I was thinking another problem could be that my layers are too thick, but it's really hard to get a gradient without making anything thick...

Any tips for me? Oh, if it wasn't clear, these are my natural acrylic for me (been there, done that), and Calgel was a bit too pricy for me (starving student...actually if you saw me, you wouldn't think I was starving)

New to Blog Spot!!

Hello out there!! I am here to talk about something that I have been fascinated with for a while now and that I don't really get to talk to others with (mainly because no one's interested)...BEAUTY!! Hopefully I will get to interact with you other beauty enthusiasts out there and get your take on all things beauty.