Tuesday, June 9th, 2009

LUSH Catastrophe Cosmetic Fresh Face Mask ($7.95 for 2.6 oz.) is a calming, cleansing mask for all types of skin. It contains such ingredients as calamine powder, talc, irish moss gel, fresh blueberries, glycerin, almond oil, and chamomile oil. It smells rather like blueberries, though I find the scent very subtle. This is an excellent mask to keep in the refrigerator just because.

It is amazing at making skin look and feel more even in tone, while giving it a really thorough, deep clean feeling (without the tightness). I bought this to accompany one of the exfoliating masks, so I can switch between the two during the three weeks they last. I find this to be a pretty gentle mask, so my skin has no issues using it more frequently. I’ve used this product before, and I swear it used to be a reddish/violet shade, but mine wasn’t colored at all.

I recommend this mask to anyone who wants a little treat for their face, and especially to anyone who would like something to help calm down any redness!

(The following is a regurgitation from previous Fresh Face Masks reviews, for those unfamiliar with them.)

Just a reminder, Fresh Face Masks, at least in the U.S., are only available in-store and not online or via mail order (I believe UK Lush will ship within the UK), and they have a shelf life of approximately three weeks, and they must be stored in the refrigerator. They’re exactly what they’re called — fresh — so don’t expect to use them much longer than three weeks, because of potential bacteria and mold growth (gross, right?).

Even using a generous amount per mask, I get at least eight masks out of each tub. For $8 a tub, it’s definitely a price I like. I usually pick up two pots — one mask that is exfoliating and another that is just a general, soothing/cleansing/refreshing one. When I reach the end of the life of them, any extra, I slather everywhere – from face to neck to chest to hands. Plus, for every five black pots you turn into Lush, you get a free Fresh Face Mask!

See inside! Continue reading →

Monday, June 8th, 2009

LUSH Brazened Honey Fresh Face Mask ($7.95 for 2.6 oz.) is an exfoliating face mask designed for all skin types, though I feel it is better on normal to oily skin. It’s primary ingredients are kaolin, talc, organic lime juice, sage, rosemary, and juniper berry, eggs, honey, glycerin, fresh fennel, ground almond shells, almond oil, ginger root, parsley, ground turmeric, and a few other ingredients make up this mask concoction. It does smell like honey with a bit of spice.

This was the third Fresh Face Mask I tried, and I fell in love with it. It made my skin feel so smooth and fresh. I just loved it right off the bat, and I actually ended up getting a second tub as soon as I ran out of the first one. (Usually, I get something different/new, since I’m working my way through their masks!) I do feel like I prefer this exfoliating mask over Love Lettuce, just because I feel like it is just a smidgen gentler. However, Love Lettuce gives me more hydration post-rinse than Brazened Honey does. Overall, I find Brazened Honey to be a good detoxifying mask that also exfoliates. My skin always feels really clean and soft without any tightness after I’ve rinsed this off.

(The following is a regurgitation from previous Fresh Face Masks reviews, for those unfamiliar with them.)

Just a reminder, Fresh Face Masks, at least in the U.S., are only available in-store and not online or via mail order (I believe UK Lush will ship within the UK), and they have a shelf life of approximately three weeks, and they must be stored in the refrigerator. They’re exactly what they’re called — fresh — so don’t expect to use them much longer than three weeks, because of potential bacteria and mold growth (gross, right?).

Even using a generous amount per mask, I get at least eight masks out of each tub. For $8 a tub, it’s definitely a price I like. I usually pick up two pots — one mask that is exfoliating and another that is just a general, soothing/cleansing/refreshing one. When I reach the end of the life of them, any extra, I slather everywhere – from face to neck to chest to hands. Plus, for every five black pots you turn into Lush, you get a free Fresh Face Mask!

See inside! Continue reading →

Sunday, June 7th, 2009

LUSH Love Lettuce Fresh Face Mask ($7.95 for 2.6 oz.) is an exfoliating face mask designed for normal to oily skin. As the label states, it is supposed to give “skin a softened, smoothed, and radiant glow.” Ingredients include agar agar seaweed, fuller’s earth, kaolin, honey, glycerin, almond oil, ground almost shells, ground almonds, and lavender oil, to name the major ones.

It’s one of the stronger exfoliating masks I’ve tried, so this is definitely not a product I’d recommend using more than once or twice a week. It smells kind of like an earthy lavender to me–it’s not at all offensive like Cosmetic Warrior and its garlic-tea-tree goodness (which, by the way, no longer bothers me, after using it for two weeks). While it exfoliates, it also hydrates from the seaweed and almond oil, which is a nice treat after you’ve rinsed off the mask.

With summer approaching, these masks are even more of a treat than they were during the winter/spring — because they’re chilled, so they are extremely refreshing! I really liked Love Lettuce, because it did make my skin feel incredibly smooth and soft to the touch, but since it is a bit harsher as an exfoliator, I found it best to use it less frequently. I teter between this and Brazened Honey, since I like to switch up every time I pick up new Fresh Face Masks.

Just a reminder, Fresh Face Masks, at least in the U.S., are only available in-store and not online or via mail order (I believe UK Lush will ship within the UK), and they have a shelf life of approximately three weeks, and they must be stored in the refrigerator. They’re exactly what they’re called — fresh — so don’t expect to use them much longer than three weeks, because of potential bacteria and mold growth (gross, right?).

Even using a generous amount per mask, I get at least eight masks out of each tub. For $8 a tub, it’s definitely a price I like. I usually pick up two pots — one mask that is exfoliating and another that is just a general, soothing/cleansing/refreshing one. When I reach the end of the life of them, any extra, I slather everywhere – from face to neck to chest to hands. Plus, for every five black pots you turn into Lush, you get a free Fresh Face Mask!

See inside! Continue reading →

Thursday, June 4th, 2009

Looking for a silicone-free primer? Look no further!

Korres Face Primer ($28.00 for 1.01 oz. or $10.00 for 0.34 oz.) is exactly that. After my debacle Smashbox Photofinish Primer, I really wanted to steer clear of silicone-based primers. I couldn’t tell you if that really causes breakouts for me or not, but I do think my skin is sensitive to high levels of silicone in products. So when I fell in love with Korres’ tinted moisturizer, I had high hopes for their face primer.

Korres touts it as a 99% natural, antioxidant-rich face primer that’s silicone free. It is formulated without silicone, parabens, sulfates, synthetic dyes/fragrances, mineral oils, petrochemicals, phthalates, and GMOs. It is Ecocert certified as well. This primer seems best for those with dry to normal skin. I’m not sure if it is “thick” enough in its primer-ness to work as well on oily skin types. I’m hoping some of you who have tried this can chime in and confirm/deny!

I found it worked well on me by making my skin tone seem smoother (not necessarily as a line-filler, though), a bit more even, and it kept my makeup looking fresh throughout the day. What I liked was that it felt like an extremely lightweight moisturizer. It doesn’t feel like a silicone primer at all – it doesn’t have the gel-y feel. It also has a very, very faint citrus scent, which is pleasing, but it’s so subtle I hardly notice it. I might never have noticed if not for wanting to determine if it had a scent at all!

The packaging is simple but effective. The tube makes it easy to get what you need out, and there’s no light damage nor dipping fingers into it either. I feel like a little goes a long way, so this tube should last me six months or longer of regular usage. Even if it only lasts two or three months, I still feel you get good bang for your buck relative to some other primers.

For me, it did what it was designed to – enhanced the way my skin looked, kept my makeup looking good even into the wee hours of the night, AND it did not break me out. In fact, my skin seemed to look and feel better after wearing this regularly for a couple of weeks.

I’m pretty eager to check out some more Korres products — anyone have any recommendations?

Thursday, June 4th, 2009

Cetaphil UVA/UVB Defense Facial Moisturizer SPF 50 ($13.99 for 1.7 oz.) is a drugstore option for a great summer moisturizer. I find it to be fairly lightweight (maybe light to medium), but once it dries, there’s no heaviness or super greasy residue. What I like about Cetaphil products is that they’re consistently good; they’re extremely reliable. I know I’m getting a no fuss formula that does exactly what it says – moisturizes and protects my face from the sun.

I would say that since the SPF is so high, there is a bit of a white cast when it is first applied. It does seem to fade after about ten or fifteen minutes, and I no longer notice it. I find myself always turning to Cetaphil when nothing else seems to work (or everything else seems to send my face into conniptions!). I’ll definitely be making my boyfriend wear this, too, when he goes outdoors and plays tennis!

Thursday, May 28th, 2009

Benefit 10 Powder ($28.00) is a combination highlighter and bronzing duo. If you’ve seen Benefit’s other powders like CORALista or Dandelion, it’s the same idea, but the powder is split in half — half is a bronzer, half is a highlighter. The highlighter is a light, milky silvery-pink with soft sheen but no real glitter particles (that’s a good thing, by the way). The bronzer is similar in texture and sheen, except it’s a peachy-bronze color with gold sheen. You can see how I used it in a look here.

10 is one of those products that takes some trial and error before you can appreciate its genius. Once you do get the hang of it, though, it is a grab-and-go kind of experience. I personally used the 168 and 169 respectively for this product, and I found it worked just right for me. I do suggest using a light hand initially, so you don’t over-do it or get a ruddy/muddy result. The highlighter is just that–a highlighter–so unless you are extremely fair, don’t go into it expecting to use it as a pink blush!

See photos and swatches! Continue reading →