Thursday, June 17th, 2010

Jack Black Intense Therapy Lip Balm

Man or Woman, Jack Black Loves Lips

Jack Black Intense Therapy Lip Balm SPF 25 ($7.00 for 0.25 oz.) is a new wonder in the Temptalia household!  What’s interesting about the Jack Black line is it is geared towards men, but thank goodness there’s no rule against women using it, too.

Designed from the ground up, Jack Black was created to appeal to the Guy’s Guy. Keeping it simple with superior products specially formulated for a man’s needs. Nothing complicated. Nothing cosmetic. Just real solutions that provide immediate visible results.

I’ve been using this about two and a half weeks now, and I love it.  I really, truly think it’s an outstanding lip balm that does everything it needs to do perfectly.  It fits into pockets and purses with ease, and it’s easy to apply–just squeeze a bit and out comes just enough to give lips a good coat of hydration.  Funny enough, when I’ve been experiencing packaging that gives me too much, Jack Black’s squeeze-tube takes a little more squeezin’ to get the product out than you’d expect (we’re not talking like squeezing an orange effort, or anything, though!).  I’ve never gotten too much product out in a squeeze, so I don’t feel like I ever waste any either.

During the day, I often wear lipstick and/or gloss, so I have been primarily using this at night.  I slick it on around 10 PM, and even when I wake up at 5 or 6 AM, I still feel a good bit of it on.  It really hangs on, and it keeps lips completely hydrated.  I feel like I need to exfoliate less, and I’m not constantly reapplying lip balm every few hours.

It’s available in two variations — one is the natural mint, which has a very cooling, minty feel when on (as well as the scent–but it smells natural, not synthetic or sweet); the other is lemon and chamomile, which reminds me a little of lemonade sipped outside on the deck during late summer.

I fully intend on stocking up on these the next time Sephora has a sale going on, but until then, I will definitely repurchase whenever I’m out of the first tube (probably in a few weeks).  It seems a little pricey at first, but given that this isn’t a drugstore brand and compared against other similarly-priced brands, you get a good amount for the money, which will last you at least a month, I’d guesstimate.  (I’m on my third week, and I use it once or twice a day on average.)

Oh, and it has SPF 25 in it.  That’s always a nice, added bonus!  And 25!  Very, very hard to find lip balm with that level of SPF in it.

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

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

Recommendation:  If you’ve been hunting around for a long-lasting, ultra hydrating, SPF-having lip balm, you gotta give Jack Black’s a try.

AvailabilitySephora

Monday, May 10th, 2010

Guerlain #262 Kiss Kiss Baby

Guerlain Cherry Summer (#262) Kiss Kiss Baby Lip Balm ($31.00) is an ultra moisturizing, sheer baby pink.  Kiss Kiss Baby is a high-end version of lip balm, so don’t go into it expecting extraordinary color pay off.  Accordingly, Cherry Summer is no exception–it’s barely there color that delivers a hydrating punch to the lips.   It’s one of two limited edition shades from Guerlain’s Summer collection.  I can’t get over how soft and smooth it is and it really does keep lips moisturized for hours.  I also like that you don’t need a lot to get the moisturizing effect, which is often a problem with higher-end lip balms.  I do like their little potted Terracotta balms a bit  more, but the stick-delivery is way more convenient.  I think Guerlain fanatics will enjoy it, but if you’re not a high-end beauty fiend, this isn’t the product I’d start with!

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

  • Product: 28/30
  • Value: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

Recommendation:  If you’re a Guerlain fanatic and are on the hunt for something ultra moisturizing, you might find it in Kiss Kiss Baby.

Availability: Nordstrom

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Friday, April 30th, 2010

Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment SPF 15 ($22.50 for 0.15 oz.) is a moisturizing lip balm in a tube. The Sugar Lip Treatment is definitely hydrating, and it’s thick enough that it leaves a thin, buttery layer on lips once applied. It has a slightly gloss look, but it isn’t too high-shine. I love how moisturizing it is when it’s on my lips, but the problem is it doesn’t last for more than a couple of hours. I find that constant reapplication is necessary to maintain that hydrated feel–once you stop, so does the moisturizing.

I love the sweet, lemony scent, though, but I am a sucker for citrus-y scents–though there’s no real taste to me! This is something I like to use during the day and at my desk. I tend to reapply lip balm several times throughout the day as I eat/drink and the like, so it’s perfect for that. It’s not so great for a slick of balm at night, because it just doesn’t last long enough for that. It does contain SPF 15 (octinoxate at 7.49% and oxybenzone at 2%), which is a nice touch.

The packaging is gorgeous–it’s an near matte but slightly metallic bronzed metal (well, that’s what it feels like!) tube. It’s sturdy and has a bit of heft to it, which makes it feel like a lipstick rather than a lip balm. All the fancy packaging probably contributes to the higher price tag–at least for a lip balm–but it’s much more emollient than many other stick-based balms I’ve tried.

I like it–between the scent and the buttery feel on my lips–I may purchase another tube once I finish this one. I like the convenience of a tube, the lemon-y scent, and the feel. I do think a product like this is easy to go through, though, because it’s so emollient that it’s easy to over-apply and finish up a tube rather quickly. I’ve been testing it out for a week or so now, and I expect one tube will last just over a month with daily use.

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

  • Product: 26/30
  • Value: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

Recommendation: It’s not a miracle treatment, but it’s a nice lip balm for everyday use. If you have only slightly chapped or dry lips, I think this may be sufficient for you. Those looking for more long-term results may find that the moisturization stops when you stop using the product.

Availability: BlueMercury

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Friday, April 2nd, 2010

Chanel Gloss Fluo de Chanel

Chanel Les Pop-Up de Chanel:  Gloss Fluo de Chanel

I admit, when I initially saw photos the new Gloss Fluo de Chanel ($27) from Chanel’s Les Pop-Up de Chanel Collection, I was pretty excited. Bright fuchsia AND coral? That’s so me. Of course I’d be drawn to them! But I am sad to report that they’re incredibly sheer. (This is why one should not get excited purely by looking at photos!) I was curious as to why they appeared fluorescent in their tubes but ultra sheer on lips, so I figured I’d better take a harder look at what they are *supposed* to be.

Chanel describes Gloss Fluo de Chanel as, “Hot colour and high-wattage shine. The electric effect of bright, sheer, light GLOSS FLUO DE CHANEL Brilliant Lip Shine mixes and matches with equally vivid shades of ROUGE ALLURE Luminous Satin Lip Colour and LE VERNIS Nail Colour — perfect for going from the beach to a night out.”

So, they had me. They suckered me in! Gloss Fluo is *designed* to be “bright, sheer, light.” Is it just me or is that description kind of confusing? Bright and sheer? What? The way I review and rate a product is always based on what the product is supposed to do, not necessarily what I think it should do. I’m going to give Chanel the benefit of the doubt and just go with these are supposed to be sheer, lightweight “glosses” rather than over the top, electric color. Okay, now that that’s out of the way…

Gloss Fluo makes an excellent lip balm. It’s one of the weirdest “glosses” I’ve played with, because it doesn’t have the texture of the gloss. It’s like a squishy jelly in a glossimer tube. They’re sheer with no real shimmer but have a fairly glossy sheen/look to them.

  • Laser looks like a brightened fuchsia pink in the tube but applies more like a lightened baby pink with just a smidgen of fuchsia in it. On my lips, it just gives it that slicked pinked pucker look — a tiny bit of enhanced rosiness to my natural lip color with lots of pretty glossiness.
  • Pop looks like an electric coral-orange, but when swatched on skin, it takes on a much pinker hue. It’s more like a pink-coral than orange at all. On my lips, Pop looks like I put on a clear lipgloss–seriously. It does less for me than Laser, unfortunately.

So, they’re some of the sheerest lip products I’ve used that weren’t actually lip balm, but Gloss Fluos are ridiculously moisturizing without being heavy. I’d wear this to bed! For those who love glossier, thicker lip balms but hate that most of them are only available in pot-form, this might be something to consider. Since they apply straight out of a tube with a doe-foot wand, it makes it easy to apply, travel with, and use on the go. Not to mention, the sheerness makes it easy to apply without making mistakes. Gloss Fluos feel like a slippery jelly on lips–non-sticky, thick without being heavy or goopy. They did remind me a bit of MAC’s Tendertones, but in a gloss tube instead.

I want to reiterate that as far as I can tell, Chanel wanted these to be sheer. They will work well with the lipsticks from the launch, as those are more vibrant (I’ve tried only one, but the other two seem promising), and designed to be more pigmented. I think these work as a moisturizing lip balm with a glossy finish, but I’m not sure I’d put my $27 towards a Chanel lip balm. It’s heaven on the lips, but I’d probably opt for one of Chanel’s Glossimers or Rouge Allures for the price and opt for a cheaper lip balm.

Don’t get me wrong, though, because these made my lips sigh in relief after a round of lip swatching. They were instantly hydrating, smooth, and wore for hours and kept my lips moisturized all afternoon.

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

  • Product: 28/30
  • Value: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

Recommendation: If the idea of a clear but glossy, ultra moisturizing lip balm in a tube gets your engine running and you don’t mind paying a little extra to get Chanel, you may like these.  Not a must-have if you’ve found a solid balm that doesn’t break the bank already!

Availability: May 2010

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Wednesday, December 23rd, 2009

MAC Warm & Cozy Collection
MAC Feelin’ Good Tinted Lip Conditioner

MAC Warm & Cozy Collection: Tinted Lip Conditioners

Even though I really like the feel of MAC’s Tinted Lip Conditioner (creamy and hydrating), I’m not keen on the delivery/packaging. I wish they’d release more Tinted Lip Conditioner *Sticks* instead of the pots. It’s more of an on-the-go kind of product, so I know many are not going to want to be fussed to use a lip brush any time they want to use this sheer lip balm. If you do use your fingers, though, you do have this gooey, tinted mess left on your fingers and need to wipe it off somewhere, which can be frustrating.

Feelin’ Good is a milky pink with a little beige in it. I don’t know why MAC describes it as a “light neutral beige” because it looked very pink on my lips!

Close for Comfort is a peachy-brown and goes on mostly peach on me. It’s kind of like a lip brightener for me, because it doesn’t alter the color of my lips that much, but it definitely makes them look healthier.

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Monday, November 9th, 2009

C.O. Bigelow Warm Spiced Cider Lip Shine ($7.50 for 0.5 oz.) is a sheer, shimmery lip jelly that spells like a apple cider and tastes sweet. I very rarely lick my lips, but this tastes so yum! This particular flavor is part of the Mentha Lip Cordials, so there is a bit of a cooling sensation when you initially apply it, and apparently it also freshens breath (zero calories!). It gives lips a glossy look with just a touch of shimmer but no real color (which is fine) while keeping them hydrated while you wear it. Warm Spiced Cider is new for the holiday season, along with Hot Buttered Rum, Triple Hot Chocolate, and Vanilla Cream Eggnog. I find I apply this when I’m running errands or around the house to keep my lips in tip top shape.

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

  • Product: 28/30
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

Recommendation: If you’re looking for a moisturizing lip balm/jelly, C.O. Bigelow’s Lip Shines give you high gloss, yummy flavored choices.

Availability: Bath & Body Works