Wednesday, April 28th, 2010

Shiseido Hydro-Powder Eyeshadow
Shiseido Hydro-Powder Eyeshadow: H5 Aqua Shimmer, H10 Languid Lagoon, H12 Lemon Sugar

Shiseido Hydro-Powder Eye Shadow ($25.00 for 0.21 oz.) is a cream-to-powder eyeshadow that can be used as a cream eyeshadow or as an eyeshadow base.

It is available in several shades: H1 Goldlights (gold), H2 Whitelights (white), H3 Tiger Eye (peach-orange), H4 Spring Plum (plum), H5 Aqua Shimmer (aqua), H6 Violet Visions (purple), H7 Green Exotique (green), H8 Bare Pink (soft pink), H9 Glistening Sand (nude), H10 Languid Lagoon (teal), H11 Rose Tulle (rose), H12 Lemon Sugar (soft yellow), and H13 Clover Dew (soft green).

With summer coming up, we have to break out our most long-wearing, budge-proof makeup. It would so not be cute to have mascara smeared under our eyes, eyeliner running around, and eyeshadow creasing and swimming on the lid. I tried three shades of Hydro-Powder Eyeshadow

  • H5 Aqua Shimmer is a steely blue with a silver sheen/shimmer. It doesn’t actually read very aqua to me, but it’s like a darkened water blue.
  • H10 Languid Lagoon is a aqua-teal with flecks of green and gold shimmer.
  • Lemon Sugar is a softened golden yellow.  This would definitely make a nice, universal colored base.

The formula of the Hydro-Powder Eyeshadows is phenomenal. They have a very creamy, almost water-based feel (that’s not to say they’re running or thin, but they’re creamy and have a wet texture) that glides onto the eye easily. The three shades I tried were all pigmented and applied smoothly and evenly to the eye whether you used your finger or a brush.

But the real reason these are amazing is that they’re crease-proof, budge-proof, and smudge-proof once they’ve dried. The drying time is long enough to give you time to blend them together, if you choose to use them as eyeshadows, but not so long that you have to wait around for it to set.

My favorite way to use these are as eyeshadow bases, because they work well to emphasize or intensify your eyeshadows as well as keeping them locked in place all day long. Even though I don’t personally use them as individual eyeshadows, they’re some of the easiest cream eyeshadows to blend together.

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  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

Recommendation: If you have problems with your eyeshadows creasing, Shiseido’s Hydro-Powder Eyeshadows may rescue you from your makeup woes either alone or worn under eyeshadow!

Availability: Nordstrom, Sephora

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Wednesday, April 28th, 2010

Lancome Juicy Tubes
Lancome 100% Natural Juicy Tubes: Rose Pretty, Blushing Beauty

To celebrate the tenth anniversary of Lancome’s Juicy Tubes, the brand has created four shades of 100% Natural Origins Juicy Tubes. The gloss is made out of 100% natural ingredients, natural flavors and fragrances, natural coloring agents, and FSC certified 100% recyclable material carton.

It is available in four shades: Blushing Beauty (sheer pale pink), Sheerfully Sweet (sheer nude-brown), Pink Precious (soft pink), and Rose Pretty (sheer strawberry). Each retails for $18.

Juicy Tubes are certainly on the sheerer side of things, and to be honest, I’m definitely not an expert on Juicy Tubes in general. These are some of the first Juicy Tubes I’ve tried in quite awhile. I like them for a slick of gloss, but if you’re looking for color, definitely look elsewhere. I tried three of the four shades and they all looked the same on me: clear but ultra glossy.

The gloss looks slick, juicy, and incredibly glossy. It’s a moisturizing gloss with a thicker, jelly texture. I find they last around two to three hours on my lips. I don’t find these particularly sticky–I’d say marginally sticky to non-sticky–but the thicker texture may make you feel like they’re a little sticky. They taste like sweetness (likely from the honey in it) and have an overall sweet scent that’s pleasing and not overwhelming.

I think they’re nice, but since they are on the sheerer side, I don’t see the need to own all four shades–just one will do. If you have very little natural pigment in your lip, you might see a smidgen of color, but on more pigmented lips, they’re definitely going to look pretty clear.

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  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 5/5

Recommendation: Those who love glossy lips with little color will like Juicy Tubes. They’re a great gloss that doesn’t dry out lips with a sweet taste and scent. If you’re more of a colored lip gloss kind of person, you may find these not to your taste.

AvailabilityNordstrom

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Tuesday, April 27th, 2010

Philosophy Raspberries & Cream Lotion

Philosophy Raspberries & Cream Body Lotion ($24.00 for 16 fl. oz.) smells EXACTLY like raspberries and cream.  It’s just ripened, perfectly sweet raspberries with the milkiness of cream to temper it.  Smells delicious… makes me want to hunker down with some dessert!  Philosophy really has a knack for nailing the scents they’re after.  You may not love the scent, but you can’t say it isn’t true to its name.  I picked this up at Nordstrom last week, because I couldn’t resist — I’m a sucker for raspberries.  They’re my favorite fruit!  But nevertheless, I’m glad I did.

It’s a lightweight lotion that feels creamy and absorbs in about five minutes.  You get a giant bottle (at least, it seems giant to me, I don’t know when I’ll finish it, if I ever do!), and you really don’t need more than a two pumps for a leg.  It’s not an ultra thick, ultra rich body cream–it’s definitely a lotion.  I like it for summer and as an everyday lotion, because it doesn’t take forever to sink into skin.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

Recommendation:  If you love the scent of sweetened raspberries, you may want to give this a whiff next time you’re at a Philosophy counter!

AvailabilityNordstrom

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Tuesday, April 27th, 2010

NARS Pure Sheer SPF Lip Treatment

NARS Pure Sheer SPF Lip Treatment nourishes and hydrates chapped lips, while giving a sheer yet noticeable tint. Infused with SPF 15, the rich and creamy texture protects lips throughout the day. Wild Mango Butter, with superior moisturizing benefits, leaves lips feeling soft and supple, while repairing dry or scaled skin. Vitamin E, Polar Berries and Acai Oil provide antioxidants and long lasting hydration for the lips.

The convenient slim-stick can be applied directly to lips or with the NARS Retractable Lip Brush for more control. No matter the usage, NARS Pure Sheer SPF Lip Treatment is sure to provide kissably soft lips.

Pure Sheer SPF Lip Treatment ($25.00)

  • Aurore Seashell pink
  • Greta Mauve
  • Paloma Cantaloupe
  • Lara Pastel pink
  • Angelique Strawberry
  • Bianca Pearl

Availability: May 2010

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Tuesday, April 27th, 2010

MAC Vegas Volt Lipstick

The Summer Season: MAC Vegas Volt Lipstick

MAC Vegas Volt Lipstick ($14.00 for 0.10 oz.) is a brightened orange-coral with a creamy, opaque finish. It’s a very rich, intense color that definitely brightens the complexion and works particularly well on warmer skin tones. I love the full-color coverage of this lipstick, and the amplified finish makes it such an easy-to-wear shade. Vegas Volt is a really classic MAC color, in my opinion. It’s just one of those shades that’s easy to be drawn to.

Is this the right coral lipstick for you? Would you wear it?

The Summer Season is a series of posts featuring bright, vibrant shades of coral, orange, and pink lipsticks and lipglosses — all perfect for a summer of fun — that runs through July 2010.

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Tuesday, April 27th, 2010

Philosophy Amazing Grace Powder

Philosophy Amazing Grace Shimmering Powder ($29.50) is a soft, icy pink highlighting powder.  Its packaged in a mirror-finish compact and inside is a light pink powder with the word “grace” embedded in the center.  When you open the compact, there’s a mirror with the phrase, “where there is grace, there is beauty,” which is a nice touch.  I just like the uplifting spirit of the Philosophy brand, and I think this is a nice reminder to have in a compact, too.

It’s a fine-milled, very smooth powder that can easily be used to highlight specific areas or dusted lightly for an all-over glow.  It does not impart much color, if any–it’s almost the faintest pink-tinged white.  There’s a definite sheen rather than obvious shimmer or glitter that does the highlighting as well, which is always nice in a highlighter.  Amazing Grace isn’t a new, innovative highlighter, but it’s a solid one if you’re looking for something soft, subtle, and with no real color.   I’d say the slight pinkness of the product does give a healthy glow to the face without actually making it a light blusher, so it works for a highlighter.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 26/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

Recommendation:   Pretty-in-pink, Philosophy’s newest highlighter does a nice job of softly highlighting the face without going overboard with glitter or shimmer.  It’s nearly colorless, which may make it a nice option for those not looking to add color to cheeks!

Availability: Sephora

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