Monday, May 30th, 2011


Urban Decay Meltdown Makeup Remover

For Your Eyes Only: Urban Decay Meltdown Makeup Remover

Urban Decay Meltdown Makeup Remover ($24.00 for 2.5 fl. oz.) is a creamy, opaque white gel-based remover that works best applied onto a cotton round or toner sheet, then held against the skin for a few seconds and finally, wiped away. Initially, I thought this product was for the whole face, because it says makeup remover, not eye makeup remover. Even the online descriptions of this product don’t suspend that belief–they say it’s a makeup remover designed for removal of even the “longest-lasting products” that’s “good for your skin.”  (I tend to associate skin care benefits more to the whole face than just the eyes!)

Though I recognize I’m a bit skeptical of much of the miracles promised by various skincare products, I’m even more skeptical of cleansers and removers that make promises, too. Products like cleansers and removers are not on skin very long, so it’s hard to believe they would be able to provide any long-term benefits. Urban Decay’s remover includes several ingredients, and one is noted to “revitalize collagen production” while others (various oils) will moisturize and replenish. When it comes to directions, I’m glad I waited for this product to go online, because the back of the tube left me clueless–did I use water, did I use it everywhere, how much, when, what!

Again, the best way to use this, based on my testing, has been on a cotton round or toner sheet, pressed against the eye for 10-15 seconds, and then wipe away the makeup. It does a good job of removing the bulk of my makeup, but I do feel like it leaves my eyes a little cloudy. There is no greasy residue or feel afterwards, but the cloudiness necessitates rinsing with water, so then there is definitely no product leftover to sink into my skin and revitalize or moisturize anything. I needed about a pea-sized dollop for each eye. It will remove face makeup, too, but you’ll end up going through this little tube rather quickly if you do so!

If it’s for eyes, it’ll last you a lot longer, and therefore the $24 price tag stretches out over a much longer time period. It does remove long-wearing products without much fuss, feels nice against the skin, and doesn’t leave behind any greasy residue–but it did make my eyes a bit cloudy and may require a second cotton round to remove a few streaks of makeup left behind (which just feels wasteful, so I rinsed off). Good, not great.

The bottom of the tube says “demaquillant yeux,” but as a U.S. brand – should I really have to know French to decipher what the product is supposed to do?  Oddly enough, I did Google translate it last night, and I didn’t include the accented E – so it translated to just “makeup remover,” but when you include the accented E, it translates to “eye makeup remover.”

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Thursday, March 24th, 2011

Lancome Coral Crush Eyeshadow Palette
Lancome Coral Crush Eyeshadow Palette

Lancome Coral Crush Eyeshadow Palette

Lancome Coral Crush Eyeshadow Palette ($48.00 for 0.141 oz.) is warm, neutral palette with only a hint of coral but mostly variations on brown.

The all-over base shade is a soft pinked champagne beige with soft gold micro-shimmer. Next, the lid shade is a soft coral-orange with faint gold micro-shimmer–this is the only coral shade of the five but love how it doesn’t lean too orange. The crease shade is a red-based, warm medium-dark chocolate brown with very subtle bronze micro-shimmer. Though I can’t imagine anyone highlighting their brow with it, the highlighter shade is a smoky brown taupe with gray tones and a metallic finish. The liner shade is a dark, smoldering brown with bronze flecks of shimmer that works well wet or dry; when used wet, the color is richer and the shade has more of a metallic finish.

my thoughts on the formula: The texture of Lancome’s eyeshadows are very smooth–soft, silky–and all of these shades were excellent in terms of pigmentation. The rich colors, blendable texture, and mix of textures gave this palette a cohesive feel.

I’m disappointed in the quantity provided in the palette, though. Lancome’s Color Design Quads come in at 0.16 oz. and their Color Design Eyeshadow singles at 0.0458 oz., which works out to be $263/oz. and $371/oz. respectively. This palette is $340/oz., which makes it more expensive ($48 vs. $42) with less product (0.141 oz. vs. 0.16 oz) than the Color Design Quads.

The Glossover

lancomeCoral

Lancome Coral Crush Eyeshadow Palette Review, Photos, Swatches

A-
This is the best of the new Lancome palettes from the ones I’ve tried so far. Not a dud in the bunch!

Product

9.5/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Dupes
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Friday, July 2nd, 2010

On-the-Go Makeup Fixers

MAC Cleansing Tips ($14.50 for 30) are my absolute favorite when it comes to easily fixing any minor application mistakes.  They’re basically dual-ended cotton swabs that have been soaked in makeup remover and are individually packaged (though each sheet has ten, you just tear them off individually).  One side is the usual rounded swab, while the other is tapered and more precise.

I actually really, really love these.  They work so well for cleaning up under the eyes when you work with shadows that have fall out, but they’re great for touching up during the day if you happen to be testing one smudger of an eyeliner, too!  They remove everything without a fuss.  Since they’re individually wrapped, you can just toss one into your purse when you need to (e.g. a special occasion), too.

So, I did not pay attention to how much these run you when I originally purchased them.  These wonder-swabs don’t come cheap!   They end up costing about $0.50 a pop!  Even the small package of MAC Wipes are cheaper ($0.40), while the bulk package of MAC Wipes are half the price ($0.26).  This is so saddening for me!    This is a great product, but it’s not something one should use often at that kind of cost.

They do work incredibly well to clean-up any faded or smudged eyeliner if you’re out and about.  I’ll continue to purchase them as I need to, but I will make myself only use them when I’m on the go or traveling–no more using those at homes.  Gotta go the extra step and use my own swabs and separate makeup remover, LOL!

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

RECOMMENDATION: If you use them sparingly, they can be an excellent time-saving, space-saving tool to have in your evening bag when you want to look your best. Just don’t use them by the dozen!

AVAILABILITY: MAC Cosmetics

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Sunday, June 6th, 2010

Soap & Glory Off Your Face Cleansing Cloths

Makeup Removing Wipes: Soap & Glory Style

Soap & Glory Off Your Face Cleansing Cloths ($6.99 for 25 or $0.28/cloth) are slowly becoming one of my favorite makeup removing wipes! Each sheet is well-saturated but not overly so, and the cloth itself is soft and thick enough not to fray or pull when used. It has a slight floral scent, but it’s subtle and I don’t find that it lingers for long. What I like most about these sheets is how refreshing they are. While they’ll get off the majority of your makeup (but may struggle with the most long-lasting products, like MAC Liquidlasts), I really love these for a face wipe-down post-gym, because they have no sticky residue or leave your skin feeling parched.

Ingredients: Amyl Cinnamal, Cetearyl Isononanoate, Ceteareth-20, Cetearyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate, Glucosamine HCL, Algae Extract, Urea, Polyquaternium-37, Propylene Glycol Dicaprylate/Dicaprate, PPG-1 Trideceth-6, Ceteareth-12, Benzoic Acid,Citric Acid, Disodium EDTA, Saccharomyces Cerevisiae Extract, Parfum (Fragrance), Dipropylene Glycol, Glycerin, Sodium ydroxide, Phenoxyethanol, Dehydroacetic Acid, Butylphenyl Methylpropional, Aqua (Water)

The branded packaging is cute, and I like that it has the plastic flip top — it makes keeping your wipes moist way easier than if it simply had a sticker flap. By the by, if your wipes (of any brand) ever dry out, put a little water (maybe 1-2 oz.), close it up, turn it upside down, and wait a day. I’ve been known to forget to close a package or two, and this technique always saves me from having to throw them away! (And yes, they work just as well as they always did!)

My still reigning favorite for all stubborn makeup are MAC Wipes (slightly cheaper, when bought in bulk — $0.26 each), but I think these are better for my post-workout needs, as they feel a little more refreshing. For swatching and removing swatches, I’ll stick with my MAC Wipes as they remove even stubborn makeup quite well.

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

Recommendation:  If you can track these down (always sold out at Target; plus Soap & Glory is moving out of Target–said they’ll be in other doors in the U.S. in the fall, but no real word yet…), they’re definitely worth a try.  They remove makeup well without leaving behind any sticky residue–instead, they leave you feeling clean and refreshed!

Availability: Soap & Glory

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Saturday, March 6th, 2010

Korres Makeup Removing Wipes

Makeup Remover Wipes: Let’s Talk Korres

Korres Pomegranate Cleansing & Make Up Removing Wipes ($12.00 for 25 wipes) are a rosy-floral scented makeup wipe that will remove makeup decently but doesn’t get off every trace of it.

These wipes don’t get the job done when it comes to long-wearing, water-resistant, or otherwise “stubborn” makeup like mascara and eyeliner. I also found that my pack seemed a little dry, so I put a little water in it and turned it upside down (my trick for keeping wipes moist!). The best part about the Korres’ wipes is that it’s a non-greasy, non-oily makeup remover, so it won’t leave you feeling greasy nor do you need to rinse after you use one.

I actually like these more for a post-workout wipe down than removing my makeup (just because I do often wear more long-wearing products). They’re extremely refreshing, and since they’re not at all oily, it takes care of your skin without adding anything to it. Really gives me a clean feeling without the tightness.

Price-wise, the Korres’ wipes work out to be just under $0.50 each, so they’re a little pricier than I’d like. At the end of the day, though, say you used this nearly once per day, it works out to about $12 a month as a cost–not necessarily make-or-break, you know? Less than a MAC Lipglass! I wish they’d have a better closure device on the Korres’ wipes, but it’s just a peel-back sticker/closure that you press close (which just isn’t as secure as something with a “click”).

My favorite wipes for makeup removing are MAC Wipes (available for $26 for 100, works out to be $0.26 each), because they’re effective without being drying. However, they’re not designed to be used around the eyes (no, seriously), and I know that I can’t use them for eye makeup removal, because they’ll burn/sting around the eyes.  Korres’ wipes don’t burn around the eyes, so that is a huge difference between the two for me.

MAC Wipes, though, are one of my beauty blogging staples (along with an awesome camera!), because it’s so easy to remove even stubborn eyeliner that’s been stuck on your arm for hours.  I tried Korres for this task, but it just couldn’t get everything off as cleanly or smoothly as MAC Wipes.

Korres’ Wipes are decent, but they’re not superb.  They work well if you wear more minimal makeup or stick with less long-wearing makeup.  One sheet will remove the majority of my tinted moisturizer.  They smell lovely, too, with that rose-ish scent (I know, it’s supposed to smell like pomegranate, but I get a lot of floral when I sniff it!) and didn’t irritate my skin (always a plus!).

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

  • Product: 24/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 3/5

Recommendation: If you need something to help refresh you after a workout at the gym or you only wear a little makeup, these are nice to have in your arsenal.

Availability: Beauty.com, Korres, Nordstrom

Tuesday, November 24th, 2009

Affordable Skincare: Aveeno Positively Radiant Makeup Removing Cleanser

Aveeno Positively Radiant Makeup Removing Cleanser ($6.99 for 5.5 fl. oz.) is a foam-based cleanser that feels lightweight, doesn’t dry out skin, and removes most makeup.

This review is one of those short and sweet kind, because the product itself is really simple.  Like many Aveeno products, it’s not about frills, it’s about meeting a need.  If I had to compare this to another high-end brand, I’d consider this similar to Philosophy’s Purity Made Simple (Foaming).  This one comes in a bottle-shaped container with a pump to distribute the foam cleanser.  I find one or two pumps is all I need to feel clean.

It is advertised as a makeup removing cleanser, not just a cleanser, and it’s unfortunate, because it doesn’t quite remove all makeup.  Whenever I have a makeup remover, I test it against the long-lasting power of MAC Fluidline.  This removed some, but it didn’t remove all.  It does remove the majority of my makeup (eyeshadow, non-waterproof mascara, foundation), but it’s not necessarily the best choice for heavier or more long-wearing products.

I do, personally, prefer to remove heavier makeup with an oil-based makeup remover (like Lancome’s Bi-Facil) before I do my nightly cleanser, so it’s not a big deal for me.  It’s just something that does take away from this product’s score, since it doesn’t completely live up to its claims.

It smells like something soft and clean and a little sweet–it reminded me of baby shampoo, to be honest.  When I was trying to describe it, all I could think of was baby shampoo as my descriptor.

Bottom Line: This is an affordable cleanser that works well for daily dirt and grime and light to medium makeup.  If you’re looking for a cleanser to remove heavy eyeliner, you may want to look elsewhere.   I actually really liked it, and I was pleasantly surprised by it overall.  I’ll probably be switching over my boyfriend over to this from Philosophy’s Purity Made Simple when he runs out.  (Well, I’m going to have to see if Aveeno offers a foaming cleanser in this product line that doesn’t have “makeup remover” on it!)

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

Recommendation: For an easy, lightweight cleanser that works well on daily dirt and build-up, this one is worth checking out!

Availability: ULTA

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