Friday, June 11th, 2010

Philosophy Gingerbread Man Shower Gel

Philosophy Shower Gels:  The Good, The Bad, The Delicious

The Tech Guy Shaun, aka The Tech Guy, aka my boyfriend, continues to enjoy his romp here on Temptalia! He’s twenty-seven with normal-to-dry skin and suffers from no more acne (much to my envy!).  Since I have a thing for Philosophy Shower Gels, inevitably, he gets into them and goes through them in record time.  (No, seriously, if it was just me, a bottle will last me half a year or more.  I don’t know, I’ve never gone through one before moving in with this guy!)

Shaun enjoys long walks on the beach, vegging out on the couch watching chick flicks, and cuddling with Mellan. Or maybe not! He handles all the behind-the-scenes action here at Temptalia, from tech support to server woes to being my shoulder to cry on.

Guess who’s back, back again, Shaun is back, tell a friend. No, seriously tell a friend! Right now!@$

After tackling extra-terrestrial life in my last review, it is time to get back down to earth. However, I will stick with the same brand and take on Philosophy’s Shower Gel Collection.  This is definitely not a Man’s product. With flavors like Raspberry Sorbet, Unconditional Love, and Orchid Blossom, I don’t recommend walking onto the job site smelling like Cherry Angel Food Cake.

I guess what I don’t understand about these body washes is why you’d want to torture yourself with these delicious smells. Every time I find myself half asleep and taking a whiff of Classic Fudge Cake, I find that half of the bottle has gone missing and my mouth tastes like soap. I don’t really know what happened, but I’m sure it’s not good. Next thing you know I’m sneezing, and bubbles are coming out of my nose! What’s with this product?!

You also have to be careful around your dog when you are using these. He starts to get this look in his eye like he’s debating whether he can take you down without too much trouble. If they come out with steak-flavored body wash then I’m for sure going to be dog food.

Some smell exactly as the packaging states. Others, however, do not smell at all as what they advertise. We have one that’s called Gingerbread Man, and let me tell you, it doesn’t smell at all like gingerbread. In fact, it smells exactly like diet cola! And I can’t tell you how awesome it is to smell like diet cola. I wait until Christine is looking the other way and then I take a deep inhale of my forearm. It’s like heaven in a bottle! I cut soda out of my diet so long ago that I had forgotten how awesome soda smells. Oh, you bubbly fiend how I miss ye.

Onto the good! These soaps lather very well and that is basically my one criteria when it comes to body wash. If I don’t look like Mr. Bubble after lathering up then you don’t have any business being on my loofah! Yeah, I use a loofah. What’s the big deal?

However, a big gripe of mine is the packaging. After using up some of the bottle, it becomes increasingly difficult to squeeze the sweet smelling liquid out of its container. I’ve nearly popped a blood vessel trying to get the soap out of these darn bottles. We went as far as getting a pump for the bottle, but the pump has to be pumped twenty times to get a decent amount out. They use a different type of softer plastic on the smaller versions of these soaps, which is much easier to manage, so I don’t really get why they don’t use that on all of their products.

RECOMMENDATION: Great lather but not great for any man unless he really likes Classic Fudge Cake. Be weary around animals and any other hungry people that aren’t offended by cannibalism.

Tuesday, April 27th, 2010

Philosophy Raspberries & Cream Lotion

Philosophy Raspberries & Cream Body Lotion ($24.00 for 16 fl. oz.) smells EXACTLY like raspberries and cream.  It’s just ripened, perfectly sweet raspberries with the milkiness of cream to temper it.  Smells delicious… makes me want to hunker down with some dessert!  Philosophy really has a knack for nailing the scents they’re after.  You may not love the scent, but you can’t say it isn’t true to its name.  I picked this up at Nordstrom last week, because I couldn’t resist — I’m a sucker for raspberries.  They’re my favorite fruit!  But nevertheless, I’m glad I did.

It’s a lightweight lotion that feels creamy and absorbs in about five minutes.  You get a giant bottle (at least, it seems giant to me, I don’t know when I’ll finish it, if I ever do!), and you really don’t need more than a two pumps for a leg.  It’s not an ultra thick, ultra rich body cream–it’s definitely a lotion.  I like it for summer and as an everyday lotion, because it doesn’t take forever to sink into skin.

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

  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

Recommendation:  If you love the scent of sweetened raspberries, you may want to give this a whiff next time you’re at a Philosophy counter!

AvailabilityNordstrom

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Wednesday, November 25th, 2009

Mmm… Body Scrub:  Kiehl’s Lavender Gently Exfoliating Body Scrub

Kiehl’s Lavender Gently Exfoliating Body Scrub ($25.00 for 6.8 fl. oz.) is pretty much my new favorite body scrub.  A part of me is struggling with how to describe what exactly I’m loving about it in such a way that truly conveys how much I adore it, but obviously, I’m going to give it a shot or else this review wouldn’t be here!

This totally does its job!  I don’t know about “gentle” exfoliation, but it has a nice level of grit/abrasiveness that makes it effective without being too harsh.  I’ve used other scrubs touted as gentle/sensitive, and they are definitely much less abrasive than this one, so I just don’t know if I’d really call this gentle.  I’d consider it more of a happy medium between what I’d consider gentle (which I think of as more of sand-sized exfoliating grains) and the average body scrub (that likely has sugar or salt particles for exfoliating).  It’s for your body, and I personally find this to be a good level of abrasiveness.   I couldn’t tell you what exactly they use for their exfoliant other than they’re “natural exfoliation particles.”

Surprisingly, the body scrub was also really hydrating post-application, too.  It both exfoliated, but it didn’t take any moisture out, and I felt like it even added a little to it. I know Kiehl’s website does point out that one of the “key ingredients” is aloe vera, so perhaps that’s where the moisturized feeling comes from.  I do feel like the scrub delivers on its promise to “leave skin silky-soft, refreshed and primed for moisturization.”  It’s also a body scrub that is creamy and lathers up a bit, so it almost feels like both a body scrub and a body wash.  I am a little partial towards body scrubs that also have a more lathering base, because I do find that they’re more moisturizing on the whole and easier to use.

I’m satisfied with the pricing on this product, too, because you get a good amount that will yield plenty of usages.  I found about a nickel-sized dollop was a good amount per leg, and I didn’t feel like I was being skimpy, either–it was just enough to be rich and effective without feeling like I was trying to conserve the product.   There are, obviously, cheaper body scrubs available, but if you’re a Kiehl’s fan, it is a bit on the top line of  their price range, but it’s a solid product.  I’d say that after seeing the pricing on Kiehl’s other body washes and scrubs, it’s about where I’d expect–cheaper than Creme de Corps, but a little pricier than their Ultra Moisturizing.  (I haven’t tried either of those, but now I’m curious!)

The one I tested out has a very lovely lavender scent–there’s nothing to it, it smells exactly as lavender would smell, and I love that.  I do find the scent of lavender to be particularly relaxing, so I often use lavender-based products at night.  I’ve been using this in the shower at night, and then layering a lavender-scented lotion afterward.  It’s soft, not at all overwhelming, and smells very natural.  They also have the scrub in Coriander, Grapefruit, and Pear Tree if Lavender isn’t your thing.

Bottom Line: This is definitely one of my favorite body scrubs of all time, and it’s my new go-to since I started using it.  I’m going to take a sniff at the other scents next time I’m near the Kiehl’s counter, but I have a feeling Lavender is the best scent for me.

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: Body scrub buffs should look into Kiehl’s for a moisturizing, gritty scrub!

Availability: Nordstrom

Wednesday, November 18th, 2009

Philosophy Pumpkin Spice Muffin Shampoo, Shower Gel & Bubble Bath Review

Philosophy Pumpkin Spice Muffin Shampoo, Shower Gel & Bubble Bath ($16.00 for 16 oz.) is yet another fun, aromatic scent from Philosophy, just in time for the fall and holiday season. I already reviewed a few of their other holiday scents, but I knew I was going to fall in love with this one.

I am ALL about pumpkin spice. Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte… Pumpkin Spice Creamer (now I can use my beloved Nespresso to make the BEST at-home pumpkin spice lattes!)… Panera Pumpkin Muffins… you name it, if it has pumpkin spice in the title, I’m all over it. Seriously. LOVE IT. It’s so cozy and homey and autumn. Philosophy totally nailed this scent in a way that really blows me away. I was like, “How did they manage to get that pumpkin spice WITH just a touch of muffin in it?” It’s just so on point. It has the exact scent of pumpkin spice, but as you take a sniff, you can totally detect that it’s more of a pumpkin spice muffin you’re smelling. I was just particularly amazed as I was really dissecting the scent last night in the shower.

I love Philosophy’s 3-in-1 Shower Gels, because they lather up quickly and easily, and they smell so good. (If you aren’t feeling pumpkin spice–how could you not?!–they have a variety of scents, mostly food-related.) I personally also love that the scent fills the bathroom/shower, but it doesn’t linger on the skin. This allows me to wear any body cream/lotion or perfume post-shower and not worry about mixing and matching scents. One 16 oz. bottle lasts me about three or four months (for two, maybe more like a month and a half or two), so I’m satisfied with the cost-per-use value I get out of each bottle.

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

  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

Recommendation: If you love pumpkin spice, I think you’ll love this scent!

Availability: Beauty.com, Nordstrom, Philosophy, Sephora

Wednesday, October 28th, 2009

Philosophy:  Peppermint Hot Cocoa Shower Gel
Philosophy: Peppermint Hot Cocoa Shower Gel

Philosophy Peppermint Hot Cocoa Shampoo, Shower Gel & Bubble Bath ($16.00 for 16 oz.) is a fun, holiday scent from Philosophy’s Holiday Collection.  The first time I lathered up with this product, I was instantly reminded of peppermint mochas from Starbucks.  It’s that chocolaty sweetness mixed with a pop of peppermint.  I think Philosophy nailed the scent, and the name is perfectly suited to it.  It’s a good mix of chocolate sweetness and richness and peppermint where neither scent overpowers the other.

Philosophy describes this scent as, “a minty spin on a chocolaty holiday favorite. this super-decadent, new peppermint hot cocoa shampoo, shower gel & bubble bath 16 oz. will surely become your favorite shower-time treat. the ultra-rich formula provides a moisturizing lather from head to toe to gently cleanse and condition your skin and hair. it even comes in a giftable holiday box.”

I am a big, and a long-time, fan of Philosophy’s 3-in-1 gels.  I only use mine as shower gels (I prefer other products for shampoo, and I rarely take baths), but I love these for two reasons:  1) sheer variety in scents available and 2) they lather up so easily and quickly and feel great when you’re using them in the shower.  I think these are affordable products, because one 16 oz. bottle lasts me about three or four months, easily.  You don’t need much to lather head to toe or to get the scent to fill your shower.  The only thing I don’t like about these is I find the bottle packaging to be of a very hard plastic, so it isn’t as easy as I’d like to squeeze out the product when it starts getting empty–requires a little strength!

Bottom Line: If you prefer shower gels that give you a lingering scent after the shower is over, Philosophy’s aren’t really designed for that purpose (they actually advertise them as scents that don’t linger past the shower/bath).  If, however, you want to enjoy a burst of scent in the shower in various fun scents like Peppermint Hot Cocoa, but don’t necessarily want to walk around smelling like that, these are amazing.

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

  • Product: 28/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

Recommendation:  As with most Philosophy shower gels… if you like this kind of scent or it sounds like one you might like, I urge you to give it a whiff!

Availability: Philosophy, Sephora

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Saturday, September 12th, 2009

Dragon Lady Legs vs. Korres Body Butter

Korres Guava Body Butter ($29.00 for 7.95 oz.) is a rich body moisturizer with a lightweight scent and heavyweight hydration with a sweet, tropica scent of guava and coconut (at least, that’s what I keep noticing).

The scent reminds me of tropical fruits, but I detect a bit of coconuttiness every time I sniff it. That’s just fine with me, since I love the scent! It’s a lightweight scent, though, so it’s not something that is cloying or feels overwhelming. Soft and subtle wins this race! :)

Surprisingly, a little goes a long way, because you only need a slightly-bigger-than-pea-sized amount for each arm/leg. This helps the price tag seem more palatable, because it does seem pricey at first. Since you can get a lot of usage out of one tube, I’d definitely say it is worth the money, and I wouldn’t say that you’re really indulging either. One thing that is nice is you can purchase it in a small tube, jumbo tube, or a medium-sized pump system. So it’s really a matter of your preference! The little tube is a bit bigger than a hand cream tube, so it fits easily in your purse for on-the-go hydration.

It’s unusual to find a body butter in a tube or pump, as most come in a tub. I really like the tube/pump delivery system, because I feel it’s more hygenic. The tub always feels a little yuck to me, and I’m always making sure my hands are thoroughly washed before grabbing any out of it. (Of course, you can always use a clean spatula to remove the product as an alternative to your fingers.)

Korres’ Body Butter does a thorough job of moisturizing dry, parched skin and keeps it soft all day long. After a week of consistent use (and for me, that is HARD! I always forget – bad me!), my legs felt like butter themselves. I really have the scaliness dragon lady legs you’ve ever seen, so any moisturizer has a very uphill climb with me! I’m so pleased that Korres’ Body Butter was able to meet the challenge. I’ve still yet to be disappointed by a Korres product!

  • Product: 9/10
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 8/10
  • Packaging: 9/10

Recommendation:  If you like tropical scents, you’ll probably enjoy Korres’ Guava-scented body butter.  If not, but you’re still in the market for a heavy duty moisturizer, their body butters are available in several other scents.

Availability: Sephora, Korres

P.S. – 30% off code TEMPTALIA is still good at KorresUSA.com through 9/15. Just placed my order on Friday myself! :)