I will be the first to admit that I am not a toner person. In fact, I didn’t even know what toner did until I started this blog! Since then, I have learned that adding a toner to your skincare system can be more beneficial than you think. Toners are used to help balance the pH level of your skin after you’ve cleansed it. They also help add moisture so long as they are alcohol-free, when used before applying your moisturizer.
If you’ve been a long-time reader, one of my favorite products is Renee Rouleau’s AHA/BHA Cleanser–it is an absolute staple in my skincare routine, and I would not give this up! (And gah!, I’m almost out!) I recently tried out Renee Rouleau’s Balancing Skin Tonic ($30.50), which is designed for oily/problem skin. RR has six different types of toners formulated for various skin types, which is great because it lets you customize your skincare system a bit more (who doesn’t want that?). The Balancing Skin Tonic helps to reduce acne-related bacteria, manage oiliness, and calm the skin–plus, it’s alcohol-free, so it shouldn’t dry out your skin like some other toners might.
I’ve been trying to include toner in my morning and evening routine, especially when I’ve been wearing a lot of makeup. So far so good. I’m really enjoying the Balancing Skin Tonic after I’ve used my AHA/BHA Cleanser, because it helps make my skin feel moist and refreshed. I also like that it helps take off any last bits of makeup I might have missed during the cleansing process. Best of all? This toner doesn’t dry out my skin (which, now that I’m more beauty-smart, I know is the result of its alcohol-free-ness!).
Now, while I adore my RR cleanser to bits, I can’t say that the toner has miraculously changed my skin or anything. It feels lighter than some other toners I’ve tried, and it does work well when I’ve applied moisturizer while this is still damp on my face (it’s a tip they give you). Maybe I’m not experienced enough in the vast world of toners to determine what makes an amazing toner stand out amongst the rest. What I can say is I think this is a good product, and it does its job–restores my skin’s pH level (assumedly, lol, no pH testing strips here…) and reduces acne-related bacteria.
Find your perfect Renee Realeau Toner at www.reneerouleau.com!
In a world of technology, and being a bit of a product geek myself, when bliss/philips sent over Bikini Perfect (Deluxe Spa Edition) ($59.99), I admired it first in awe, because it looked sleek and practical. Then I admired it because it looked like it could quite easily be a modern day torture device. Seriously, some of those attachments will leave the less hair removal savvy running!
The Bikini Perfect is an at-home grooming system. It features a cordless, rechargeable, shower-friendly trimmer with six attachments. The kit also comes with trial sizes of their body butter & an ingrown-hair exfoliating pad.
- Precision Trimmer: grooms bikini ilne
- Precision Comb: ensures even grooming results (5 length settings)
- Eyebrow Comb: trims entire eyebrow to a uniform length
- Micro Trimmer: shapes/defines/removes brows or a single hair
- Micro Shaver: extra smooth and safe shaver
- Epilator: removes hair by the root
So what did I do? Being the not-so-hair-down-there savvy (hey, I don’t mind the disposable razor technique–gives me the results I want and keeps me bump free!), I went straight for the Epilator attachment. Now, let me tell you that I imagine the epilator attachment is the most painful of the six, because let’s face it, it’s plucking hair entirely, not just trimming or shaving it.
When you first turn the device on, the speed it is spinning/whirring at is downright frightening. I was like, “OH GOD!” when I turned it on, and I looked at myself in the mirror thinking, “Can I really do this? Aww, what the hell!” For as daunting as it seemed, it wasn’t that bad when I was going around the bikini line and whatnot. This is not to say that it was painless. I think my pain tolerance is decent for down there, so the epilator and I got along fine. However, there were a few hairs that got pulled out that made me go, “GOOD GOD!” The pain is akin to plucking out the hair with tweezers–just not as painstakingly slow. I’m trying to build up some courage to try the eyebrow comb, but we’ll see!
For the pricetag, this is a worth-it purchase if you’re into at-home shaving. If you’re a little terrified of having someone else see (or muck around with) your naughty bits, this is a less embarrassing method. If you’re into Brazilians, you’re probably better off getting a wax, since it’s faster (and the pain is probably about the same as with the epilator in THOSE areas). But for those who just want to trim, neaten, and take care of the bikini line–this does a fine job of keeping you looking your swimsuit best!
Learn more about the kit at blissworld.com.
Red by Kiss Perfect Pair ($5.99) is a tweezer and nail clipper set. Prior to trying these delightfully pink tweezers, I have been Tweezerman-snob. I think I have about three pairs of Tweezermans around my house, in various pockets of the apartment. However, Tweezerman tweezers don’t come cheap (I think all of mine were $10 or more). These tweezers look and feel a lot like my more expensive Tweezerman ones, surprisingly enough. I’ve found myself using these for the past few weeks regularly (they’re sitting on my desk, beside my 10x magnifying mirror, ha!), and I haven’t felt the urge to go locate my Tweezerman tweezers either. The nail clipper is kind of cool, because it’ll trap your nail clippings in it, so it creates less of a mess. I felt that the clippers felt a bit flimsy compared to the tweezers, which were sturdy. I’d probably opt just for the tweezers over these particular clippers.
Who do you trust when it comes to your tweezers?
Jane Iredale is a full-line of mineral-based cosmetics. It first was introduced back in 1994, which makes it one of the more established mineral makeup brands available today.
Some products I enjoyed:
Amazing Base SPF 20 ($42.00) is one of Jane Iredale’s signature and best-selling products. It is a loose mineral foundation that gives a good amount of coverage without having oil, talc, dyes, or parabens. It is considered a water-resistant formula. I like that it has a lot of range in the colors it offers, which is always ideal so customers can choose the appropriate tone for themselves. If you’re not so keen on loose powder, think about trying Liquid Minerals ($46.00), which definitely caught my eye (and I hope to try sometime!).
In Touch Cream Blush ($26.00) comes in five shades, all equally gorgeous. I really enjoyed Charisma for its subtle raspberry color. These mineral cream blushes come in a stick form, which makes application incredibly easy, even on the go.
Active Light ($25.00) is an undereye concealer that comes in liquid form–which I think is great. I find that powder concealers never work quite as well as liquid does for me, though I couldn’t really tell you why. I also like that it comes in the form of a pen, which makes it even easier to apply and really get into the areas I need.
Other products you may be interested in: Jane Iredale Sample Kit ($28.00), Moonglow Bronzer ($46.00), 24K Gold Dust Powder ($34.00), Eye Gloss ($15.00), and LipColour SPF 18 ($19.00).
What could they improve on? Their prices seem a bit all over the map–their foundations are $40 or higher, while they have several lip products and staples under $20. I do feel the foundation seems a bit pricey, but I do like Jane Iredale’s overall quality and feel it may be worth it to those who can afford.
Learn more about the brand at www.janeiredale.com.
gloMinerals was founded by Robin silver-McGee, and their mission is to develop mineral makeup using the best quality pharmaceutical-grade ingredients to create excellent makeup that’s good for the skin. gloMinerals is a full line of mineral makeup, from basics to blush to shadows, to even their own skincare range.
Some products I enjoyed:
gloPressed base ($39.00) comes in a bunch of different skin tones, which makes it great for those who need variety and really want to get a good match. This particular product is one of their bestsellers, as it is a pressed foundation with a matte finish. You can also use the gloMatte finishing powder ($33.50) for longer lasting matte coverage or touch-ups.
gloPerfecting Powder ($33.50) is a translucent powder that acts to absorb oil buildup to keep your finish looking matte, rather than shiny or oily throughout the day. Again, it is a pressed powder, which makes it a convenient tool to carry around with you.
gloShimmer brick ($31.50) is a compact that has four different colors that can easily be used individually or together. What I like about the Shimmer brick is that there is a low level of shimmer, so you get more of a subtle sheen than a glitter mess when used to highlight or add depth to cheeks.
Other products you may be interested in: gloBlemish Stick ($18.00), gloLoose base ($37.00), gloFace Primer ($23.00), gloProtective Liquid Foundation ($30.50), gloDust 24K ($36.50), and gloMoist Lip Treatment ($16.00).
What could they improve on? Their prices are steeper than other popular mineral makeup brands, though they do offer a lot of pressed variations in their mineral makeup line. They also do not seem to have any sample kits available, which can make it difficult to purchase online.
Learn more about the brand at www.glominerals.com.
Have you ever used gloMinerals? What did you think of the brand?
pur minerals is a mineral makeup brand with both loose and pressed mineral makeup, which makes it a more versatile brand. In addition to the traditional mineral makeup ingredients, they have added shea butter and Vitamin E to help bind their ingredients together. They do not use talc or oil or fillers in their products, either. In addition to their full range of mineral makeup, they also have skincare products available, which I don’t usually see from mineral makeup brands.
Some products I enjoyed:
4-in-1 Pressed Mineral Makeup Foundation with SPF 15 ($24.50) is, according to purminerals, the brand’s “claim to fame.” What I like about the pressed mineral compact is that it allows you to have the benefits of mineral makeup, but without the mess. I have always found that whenever I use a loose mineral powder, more often than not, it gets all over me and the bathroom countertop. There is a good range of colors within the product’s range, but if you are concerned, they also have a split pan version, where you get two shades instead of one (which is especially good for those who change skintones over summer!).
Universal Marble Mineral Powder & Bronzer (Bronze & Brighten) ($21.50) is this gorgeous swirled bronzer that acts to highlight and brighten skin. It is universal, which means it runs lighter and sheerer than super dark or pigmented, but it is buildable, which is what matters in a sheerer product. There is also a Marble Mineral Powder in Pink, which looks incredibly pretty. Aside from bronzer, Pur Radiance Mineral Powder ($21.50) is a great pressed mineral highlighter/blush that gives you that just flushed, glowy complexion.
pur truly has a full line of mineral makeup based cosmetics–not just powders and face products, but lipsticks, glosses, and even lip tints. The Mineral Lip Tint SPF 15 ($16.50) comes in several fun shades, and they’re great for just a hint of color. The Lip Tints come in a sleek, silver tube with twist up color. Don’t forget about their Mineral Eye Defining Pencil with Smudger ($16.50) for waterproof, smudge-proof eye liner that’s mineral based.
Other products you may be interested in: 4-in-1 Loose Mineral Makeup Foundation ($23.50), Mineral Eye Prep ($17.00), Pur-ly Abundant ($16.50), Pressed Mineral Eyeshadow Singles ($12.00),
What could they improve on? There aren’t many loose powder options, which may make some traditional mineral makeup wearers wary or even pass them over. I like pressed mineral makeup, because it’s not as messy and it’s more travel-friendly, but I do think loose mineral makeup is part of the allure of mineral makeup in general. I do not think this is so much a con, as something that differentiates pur from other brands.
Learn more about the brand at www.purminerals.com.
Have you tried this brand? What was your experience?