Monday, May 16th, 2011

Bare Minerals Deep Cleansing Foam
Bare Minerals Deep Cleansing Foam

Bare Minerals Deep Cleansing Foam

Bare Escentuals Bare Minerals Deep Cleansing Foam ($20.00 for 4.2 oz.) has been my go-to night time cleanser for the past three months, and I’ve really enjoyed using it. I’ll definitely be keeping it in my to-go-back-to bin (as I rotate through to test out new products, I hold onto ones I really like). Earlier this year, Bare Escentuals rolled out a full range of skincare that has been in the works for years, and the cleanser is the first product I figured I’d try out (I am also anxious to review their Purely Nourishing Cream–which I loved–but I keep forgetting to photograph the jar!).

It’s a rich, foaming cleanser that is activated by applying a pearl-sized amount onto wet skin. One thing I love about this product is just how little you need–seriously, a pea-sized amount is more than you really need. It’s a really thick, rich and creamy cleanser that goes on easily and is easy to move across the skin. There is a subtle herbal-ish scent (it’s not strong at all nor does it linger) that seems due to the ingredients (not fragrance, as it is free from synthetic fragrances, as well as parabens, sulfates, petrochemicals, and the like).

My skin always feels really clean without being tight or dry, and it feels so gentle the entire time.  Foaming cleansers can sometimes leave skin feeling stripped, but I never experienced that with this cleanser, which I used even when my skin was drier than normal.  The instructions actually say to avoid the eye area, but being impatient as I am, I didn’t read the instructions before using it the first few times, so I used it on my eyes, but I had no ill effects–no stinging, burning, cloudiness, etc. Not that I would endorse using the product that way, but if you accidentally get a little near your eye, it shouldn’t be the end of the world. It was able to break down all my face makeup, including medium coverage foundation.

I’m totally surprised at the affordability of the range, though, and in particular, this cleanser, because seriously, this tube of cleanser will last me a solid year, if not longer. My tube doesn’t even look like I’ve used it, and I’ve used it nearly every night for three months!  Oh, and for Clarisonic users, this cleanser works fabulously with it!

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Monday, May 16th, 2011

Illamasqua Gamma Nail Varnish
Illamasqua Gamma Nail Varnish

Illamasqua Gamma Nail Varnish

Illamasqua Gamma Nail Varnish ($14.00 for 0.5 fl. oz.) is described as a “neon orange.” They really mean neon, too, because this is a medium-dark, neon orange–it’s traffic cone orange, construction orange, whatever you want to call it–it’s bright and in-your-face orange. It’s opaque in nearly one coat, though I did two for swatches, and it dries to this pleather-like finish–a little shiny, kind of matte, but not quite.  The finish reminded me of Orly’s Plastix, though Gamma is more neon and deeper than Orly’s Old School Orange.  Illamasqua’s formula is richly pigmented, smooth, and easy to apply.  I typically get a full week of wear with Illamasqua Nail Varnishes with minimal tip wear and no chips.

The Glossover

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product

Gamma

A
If you love your neons, Gamma is an excellent orange to put on your list. The polish flows so well, coverage is phenomenal, and it wears beautifully.

Product

10/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Sunday, May 15th, 2011

Milani Purr-fect Purple Baked Eyeshadow
Milani Purr-fect Purple Baked Eyeshadow

Milani Baked Metallic Eyeshadow: Purr-fect Purple

Milani Purr-fect Purple Baked Metallic Eyeshadow ($7.49 for 0.05 oz.) is medium-dark red-toned purple with a silvered shimmer and sheen.  Of the several new shades Milani released, I was disappointed in this one–the pigmentation is just not nearly as intense as it looks in the pan.  The pan looks like a much more vibrant, violet purple with greater depth than is achieved when used (regardless of whether it is used wet or dry).

Milani could ditch that curved sponge/brush applicator, because the bristles are splayed and scratchy, while the sponge is thin and surprisingly scratchy. I did like the switch to a black interior, over the champagne gold from the Runway Eyeshadows. The lid is also quite secure, and I had to pry it open with my nails.

The Glossover

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product

Purr-fect Purple

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The color suffers from sheerness, even when applied dampened, which makes it one of the weaker shades from the recent launch of Milani's baked eyeshadows. The color is also more muted than it appears in the pan.

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

7/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Sunday, May 15th, 2011

Illamasqua Bacterium Nail Varnish
Illamasqua Bacterium Nail Varnish

Illamasqua Bacterium Nail Varnish

Illamasqua Bacterium Nail Varnish ($14.00 for 0.5 fl. oz.) is described as an “opalescent beige” with a shimmer finish. It is a really intriguing shade, and I think those who tend to collect nail polishes may appreciate this shade in particular. It’s just weird–in a good way–it’s this cross of green, beige, and brown with threads of silver and iridescent opal. The base color reminds me most of khaki–brown with this murkiness–but the way the opal shimmers and reflects light adds interest to the shade.

Illamasqua’s formula is richly pigmented, smooth, and easy to apply. I did notice very slight brush strokes in the finish under really bright light–the kind common in more metallic finished polishes. Bacterium was opaque in two coats. I typically get a full week of wear with Illamasqua Nail Varnishes with minimal tip wear and no chips.

The Glossover

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product

Bacterium

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It's almost office-friendly... but with a little kick. The quality of Illamasqua's Nail Varnishes is excellent--they apply so fluidly and evenly, and the colors themselves are nicely pigmented and wear well.

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Sunday, May 15th, 2011

Video Review: NARS Summer 2011

This is a video I filmed when I first received NARS’summer collection to review, so these are my initial thoughts along with swatches.  For more detailed reviews, check out the NARS Summer 2011 tag for all relevant posts!

Did you pick up anything from this launch? Favorites?

Saturday, May 14th, 2011


Giorgio Armani Gloss d’Armani

More than a mere gloss… Concentrated high-definition color, fusing shine, comfort and lasting hold. Giorgio Armani’s color expertise takes a three-dimensional form.

A dress code with 18 captivating color variations: Nude beige, at the heart of Armani’s color DNA, is expressed in luminous half-tones, draping the lips in a sheer chiffon-like veil. From rosewood to raspberry, desaturated pinks add an extra dose of chic to your style. Like moiré silks, the plum shades combine shine and depth of color. An unexpected red shakes things up: Rouge 400, the incendiary signature Rouge d’Armani shade, now in a sheer version for an astonishing, explosive effect. Infused with light, the color melts into a curved, feminine design that echoes Rouge d’Armani’s aesthetic; a couture silhouette in a translucent case with a black lacquer top.

The exclusive Color-Fil Shine technology, allows the texture of Gloss d’Armani to be compared to a weave that gently and lastingly adorns the lips. The secret ingredient: the Color Bond Polymer, already found at the heart of Rouge d’Armani, has the ability to form a supple mesh that traps pigments and pearlescent particles. Thanks to its translucent formula base, the texture gives full expression to color. Mirror oils increase its shine while silicon oil leaves it silky smooth and non-sticky. The comfortable, stay-fast color is like a second skin that remains true for eight hours without fading or migrating. Dress your lips with Gloss d’Armani.

Gloss d’Armani’s velvet applicator is so precise that just a single gesture achieves a flawless result. Impeccably shaped, it hugs curves, beautifully enhances volume and defines contours…instantly and effortlessly, with an expert touch.

availability: On-counter now, 18 shades, $28 each

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