Thursday, May 7th, 2009

Lavanila just recently launched The Healthy Deodorant ($18.00). It is touted as 100% natural, 100% healthy, and 100% effective. It is free of aluminum, parabens, propylene glycol, talc, phthalates, and triclosan. It uses a beta-glucan technology with antioxidants, active botanicals, and essential oils to fight against odor in addition to keeping skin smooth.

It’s available in four scents:

  • Pure Vanilla
  • Vanilla Coconut
  • Vanilla Lavender
  • Vanilla Grapefruit

I tested out the Vanilla Lavender scent, and I really put it to work, as it was about 85 degrees here, and I was running around playing with the dog for a bit. The Healthy Deodorant met the challenge, and I was surprised at how longwearing it is. In my experience, deodorants that are more organic or “natural” tend to just not work quite as well as other deodorants.

The Healthy Deodorant keeps me dry all day long, and it has a nice scent, too. I find most deodorants smell quite powdery (no matter the scent), kind of as an after-scent, but Vanilla Lavender smelled like a slightly sweet lavender scent. It’s dome-shaped, which actually makes it easier to use than deodorants I’ve tried in the past. It glides on easily and doesn’t leave a slew of white film behind either. I’ll definitely be checking out the other scents, too, when I run out of this one!

Availability: Sephora.com

Tuesday, May 5th, 2009

Philosophy Unconditional Love Firming Body Emulsion (16 oz. for $34) is a ridiculously well-hydrating moisturizer for your body with the same, blackberry ‘n vanilla sweetness as Unconditional Love Eau de Toilette I wrote about earlier. Again, despite being a rather sweet and fruity scent (with a good dose of warm vanilla), it’s not cloying or overly sweet. It also doesn’t turn once it’s applied to skin.

The Firming Body Emulsion has a “synergistic blend of vitamins E and C provides antioxidant protection and firming properties to help tone the skin.” That’s fancy talk for ingredients that are supposed to help your skin look better. I don’t really buy into firming body products–they take a long time to work, you really have to work it in (a lot of the “firming” effect comes from all your hard work!), and apply it at least twice a day. It’d be nice if it did anything, but I really just like it and use it for the likeable scent and how moisturizing it is.

I also like to use this to layer with the fragrance to help bring out the scent a bit more, since both are lightly scented. One bottle will definitely last me several months of everyday usage — I’d say I use two pumps per leg, and then another three pumps for the rest of me. Each “pump” of product isn’t very much, either.

I will say that the vitamin E inclusion is nice, because vitamin E can help reduce some skin concerns, though. It’s the olive and macadamia nut oils and shea butter that I care about, since those three together are one whopper of a hydrator!

Tuesday, May 5th, 2009

Unconditional Love Eau de Toilette Spray (1.7 oz. for $40) is the latest fragrance release from Philosophy, which you may know because I absolutely adore their lip shines and shower gels. Unconditional Love is a mix of blackberries and vanilla–it’s a sweet, slightly food-y scent. I expected it to be cloying, too sweet to bear, but it’s a light scent with just enough sweetness to make it a comforting scent. I’d say it’s almost a heavier version of Philosophy’s Falling In Love, and it does remind me a bit of Stella, too.

Note that it is an Eau de Toilette, which means it is a lighter/less concentrated perfume, so the wear time isn’t not as good as an eau de parfum. This is a scent best layered with the coordinating shower gel or firming body emulsion (review coming!), if you really want to make it a more noticeable scent. It’s a fun scent for summery, beach-going days–when you want something low key, easy to wear, and sweet.

Sunday, May 3rd, 2009

LUSH Cosmetic Warrior Fresh Face Mask ($7.95) has all of the ingredients and benefits that I’d want in a face mask. There’s just one major problem — the scent! Oh, my goodness, it is a mix of garlic and tea tree oil, which are both incredibly powerful scents. The garlic is what really gets me, I think, because I’ve used tea tree oil before and don’t mind the smell. This is a mask I only want to use when my allergies are acting up, because I can’t really smell! (I’m actually using it while I write the review!)

So if you can a) handle the scent or b) can’t smell very well, you might still want to consider this mask, because it does feel amazing. Cosmetic Warrior is designed for acne-prone skin. It has garlic that acts as an antiseptic agent, tea tree as an astringent, and eggs and honey” This mask is kind of like a deep-cleansing mask that’s designed to help lift oil out of the skin. Deep cleansing kaolin and fresh grapes help get that freshly clean feeling down pat.

I will say that the scent fades a bit as the mask dries, and after using it a few times, my nose seems to have gotten used to the scent so it’s not as jarring as it was the first time I used it. I definitely suggest giving a pot a shot, and if you can use it a few times, you might find it’s well worth the five or ten minutes you breathe your mouth ;)

Just a reminder, LUSH Fresh Face Masks are only available in-store and cannot be shipped (at least not in the U.S.) due to the freshness-factor. These last about three weeks and must be in your refrigerator during that time. I like to have two masks on hand at any given time, just because I like to switch it up. I usually alternate between a mask like Cosmetic Warrior and then another mask just because (like BB Seaweed).

Wednesday, April 29th, 2009

Apparently, this post never got posted… and I meant to have it post in February! Oh well, better late than never…

Two more items from my Sephora.com Friends & Family haul — you can tell it takes me awhile to get through what I buy, LOL. A lot of times when I buy product exclusively for myself, I forget to blog about it, too! Pictured above is YSL Golden Gloss #9 in Golden Garnet ($28.00), and it is sooo pretty! I was really excited when I received it, because it has loads of shimmer and everything that makes a Golden Gloss a Golden Gloss–but it added a lot of color to my lips. (I apologize for not having lip swatches.) It’s this raspberry pink color with golden and pink shimmer. This may be my favorite Golden Gloss ever.

The other lipgloss I purchased was YSL Touche Brilliance in #7 Petal Rose ($29.00), and while it’s pretty, it didn’t do very much for me at the end of the day. It’s fairly sheer, and the shimmer is subtler than Golden Gloss but still noticeable. I found that it had a lot of glossy sheen to it, though, which is a plus. I think what made it less exciting is that I tried it right after Golden Garnet, which just takes the cake for me. This color doesn’t do much for me on my lips, beyond a MLBB kind of effect plus shimmer. I’m also not sold on the lip brush kind of packaging — I think I prefer wands and the like, just because I feel like the brush gets easily gunked up and needs to be cleaned from time to time. I haven’t given up on the Touche Brilliance formula yet, but I definitely gotta look for shades with more pigmentation!

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Wednesday, April 29th, 2009

Urban Decay Get Baked Eye Kit ($28.00) includes Baked, Half Baked, Twice Baked, and Flipside eyeshadows, along with a travel-sized 24/7 Eye Pencil in Bourbon. It also comes with a mini Sin primer potion.

Baked is a stunning shade of ultra pigmented, deep bronze. Half Baked is a softer, more golden-toned bronze shimmer shade. Twice Baked is a dark, chocolatey brown with subtle gold shimmer. Flipside is a bluish-teal with blue-green shimmer. I love the Baked shades, because they’re really rich in color and go on so smoothly. I just see these being stunning in neutral looks, especially during the summer. Flipside is a bluer version of MAC Shimmermoss, and it is a welcome addition in my collection!

I already have Bourbon and Sin in full-size, and I do like both. LOVE Bourbon, but I love all of the 24/7 Pencils. I like Sin for a shimmery base — I do, personally, like it more than regular UDPP.

Get Baked is a great summer palette with a good price to boot. Check out your local Sephora or Urban Decay counter to see for youself!

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