Wednesday, April 13th, 2011

Wet 'n' Wild Vanity Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette
Wet ‘n’ Wild Vanity Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette

Wet ‘n’ Wild Vanity Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette

Wet ‘n’ Wild Vanity Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette ($4.99 for 0.25 oz.) contains six eyeshadows–three with matte finishes and three with frost finishes. Vanity is a warm-toned palette with a mix of browns and golds. You can see a look I did with this palette here.

The three matte finished shades are: a soft, barely-there beige, dirtied light-medium tan brown, and deep, dark brown with burgundy-red undertones. These mattes were much better than the ones found in the recently launched spring palettes–much smoother, more pigmented, and applied better. I felt they swatched better than they applied, but they still applied decently. The beige shade is surprising, because for as light as it is, it wasn’t chalky at all.

The three frost finished shades are: a pale whitish-gold, bright yellow gold, and rich chocolate bronze. I found the pale gold to be rather sheer, and it easily disappeared when applied, so it did not apply evenly. The pigmentation and texture of the gold and bronze, though, is much nicer–both have good color pay off and are pretty soft, while the bronze is the best in the palette overall.

Vanity is housed in standard fare packaging for Wet ‘n’ Wild; a clear flip top with a black base. It’s sturdy enough for keeping at home, but it might not travel as well (if it’s tossed around a lot). It should stand up to some wear and tear. What I liked most was how well it secured closed. I didn’t find the included brushes to be worth using; they were scratchy and rather splayed.

The Glossover

coming-soon

Wet 'n' Wild Vanity Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette Review, Photos, Swatches

B
I think it's a nice palette, and for something that doesn't break the bank, it's definitely a good option for warmer neutrals. I found blending to be a little more time-consuming with these eyeshadows than is par for the course, which is in part due to the texture. These work best layered directly over a base but less so when layered on top of each other--that is when blending is more difficult.

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

3.5/5

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Thursday, April 7th, 2011

TheBalm BalmShelter Tinted Moisturizer
TheBalm BalmShelter Tinted Moisturizer

TheBalm BalmShelter Tinted Moisturizer

TheBalm BalmShelter Tinted Moisturizer SPF 18 ($25.00 for 2.25 oz.) is designed to give “long lasting moisturizer” with a polished look while skin feels “silky.” Immediately, I wished there were more shades available–there are only three: Light, Light/Medium, and Medium. I tested out the Light/Medium shade, which I found to be a pretty good match, though perhaps a hair light, for my complexion (I’m NC25/30 in MAC, Punjab in NARS).

Tinted moisturizers are great for days when you want a little coverage but not a lot of makeup. Hallmarks of a great tinted moisturizer are sheer coverage, creamy consistency, and hydrating. BalmShelter provides enough coverage to even out my skin tone (especially around the cheeks, where I am a bit blotchy) and helping to give my face a uniform color (I’m darker around my hair line than anywhere else). It has a natural finish, so it’s not matte but not too dewy. I did find it more dewy than not, and if you have oilier skin, you may find it even more necessary to finish with a setting powder. I do, normally, set even tinted moisturizer with powder, though.

What I really liked about BalmShelter was its very creamy consistency; it was thick without being goopy and spread really well and evenly. It definitely felt like a lotion, which made it even easier to blend and cover my face during application. It comes in a squeeez tube, and there is no problem getting just what you need out. I wasn’t as keen on its ability to hydrate, though; it was decent but I felt like I needed to layer moisturizer underneath. I couldn’t just use BalmShelter in lieu of a moisturizer. For oilier skin types, it may be enough, but for my normal-to-dry skin type, it wasn’t quite enough. It wears for six to eight hours before I notice it has sheered out in some places (like my t-zone).

The Glossover

coming-soon

TheBalm BalmShelter Tinted Moisturizer Review, Photos, Swatches

B
Though it notes this as a product that gives long lasting moisture, I felt it performed just below average. I like it, though, overall, because of how blendable and smooth it is to apply. It feels lightweight and provides enough coverage to even out subtle imperfections in skin tone but looks perfectly natural.

Product

7/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4.5/5

Results
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Wednesday, March 23rd, 2011

Philosophy Orchid Blossom Shower Gel
Philosophy Orchid Blossom Shower Gel

Spring Florals with Orchid Blossom

Philosophy Orchid Blossom 3-in-1 Shower Gel ($16.00 for 16 fl. oz.) is soft, sweet floral that bursts with fragrance as soon as it lathers up but doesn’t linger on the skin.  The overall scent seems lighter and subtler than many other Philosophy scents, particularly their food-based scents, though still seemingly less fragrant than ones like Unconditional Love.

Philosophy describes the scent as:

inspired by the delicate essence of orchid blossoms, this shampoo, shower gel & bubble bath embraces classic beauty and elegance. the extra rich and creamy formula provides a moisturizing lather that caresses your body as it gently cleanses and softens skin and hair. the delicate, whispering scent of orchid blossoms inspires a compassionate, beautiful experience that is meant to be cherished.

my thoughts on the formula: They lather up well and leave skin feeling clean without any tightness or dryness. If you prefer your body wash to leave behind a long-lasting scent, these won’t be for you, but if you like to enjoy the scent while you shower but don’t want it to linger heavily beyond, then these are perfect. (I belong to the latter category!) I don’t find them to lather quite as well in the hair, and they work in a pinch to clean hair, but I prefer many other shampoos over this one. It does, however, work well as a bubble bath, too–a little goes a long way.

final thoughts: It’s a pleasant floral scent, and out of the four spring offerings from Philosophy, I think this is probably the best – it has enough strength to make for an enjoyable shower.

where to buy: Philosophy

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011

theBalm Curvy Cami Eyeshadow
theBalm Curvy Cami Eyeshadow

theBalm Curvy Cami Eyeshadow

theBalm Curvy Cami Eyeshadow ($16.00 for 0.12 oz.) is described as a “plum shimmer with gold flecks.”  It’s a medium-dark plum with subtle red-mauve undertones and even subtler gold shimmer.  I love how it is a red-based purple without being obvious, which makes it easier to wear and more universally suitable.

my thoughts on the formula: Curvy Cami has a very soft, silky texture, but it is a touch powdery and doesn’t seem as pigment-packed as other theBalm eyeshadows I’ve tested.  It is easy to blend because of the soft texture.  Worth noting, too, is individual eyeshadows come with 0.12 oz., which is just over double the average eyeshdaow–and at a rather affordable price tag.

The Glossover

product

theBalm Curvy Cami Eyeshadow Review, Photos, Swatches

B
It’s a nice, softened plum with some darkness but without being blackberry or vampy. I do wish it was a bit more pigmented, since it seems a little sheer.

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

4/5

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Friday, March 18th, 2011

Philosophy Orange in Bloom Shower Gel
Philosophy Orange in Bloom Shower Gel

Spring Florals with Orange in Bloom

Philosophy Orange in Bloom 3-in-1 Shower Gel ($16.00 for 16 fl. oz.) is a companion to Cherry in Bloom, but it is noticeably more fruit-dominated than the latter.  Initially, it smells like a burst of orange creamsicles.  I don’t mean that in a bad way but that is exactly what it reminded me off: the sweetness of vanilla mixed with the citrus of orange.

Philosophy describes the scent as:

orange in bloom shampoo, shower gel & bubble bath showers you in the delicate, citrus essence of orange blossoms as you lather from head to toe.

It seems too heavy with orange to mimic the orange blossom scent–the florals don’t sing quite enough here.  After lathering for a few minutes, the sweetness seems to disappear and then I get hints of the underlying floral quality of the scent.

my thoughts on the formula: They lather up well and leave skin feeling clean without any tightness or dryness. If you prefer your body wash to leave behind a long-lasting scent, these won’t be for you, but if you like to enjoy the scent while you shower but don’t want it to linger heavily beyond, then these are perfect. (I belong to the latter category!) I don’t find them to lather quite as well in the hair, and they work in a pinch to clean hair, but I prefer many other shampoos over this one. It does, however, work well as a bubble bath, too–a little goes a long way.

final thoughts: If you like the scent of sweet oranges, perhaps orange creamsicles but something not quite as sweet, this might be for you. It’s less than full-blown orange food-based scent but not wholly reminiscent of orange blossoms.

where to buy: Philosophy

Tuesday, March 15th, 2011

Wet 'n' Wild Petal Pusher Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette
Wet ‘n’ Wild Petal Pusher Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette

Wet ‘n’ Wild Petal Pusher Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette

Wet ‘n’ Wild Petal Pusher Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette ($4.99 for 0.30 oz.) contains eight eyeshadows spread over two columns. Each column seems to coordinate within itself more than the two columns do with each other. The tone of the palette is rather cool, with the first column being purple themed and the second column being more earth-toned.

The first column consisted of a pale, icy violet shimmered satin white; muted pink-lilac base with pale gold shimmer-sheen; darkened red-toned purple with a frost finish; and medium-dark violet-blue purple with silver sparkle. I found the pigmentation to be a little sheer in both of the lighter shades–a little dusty, too; not nearly as saturated as the two darker purples.

The second column includes a pale, high-frost pink-white; coppery rose mauve with red undertones in a soft frost finish; blackened burgundy brown with a satin finish; and a grayish black with subtle green sparkle and satin finish. The pale pink is extremely pigmented and smooth, while the copper rose shade is a bit sheerer and blends into a very sheer shade when applied. I found the burgundy shade to lean much browner when swatched than it looked in the pan. The darker grayish-black was more pigmented than previous variations I’ve seen in the Color Icon palette, which was nice, but it did fade a bit when worn (after six hours).

my thoughts on the formula: Color Icon Eyeshadows are definitely some of the best eyeshadows you’ll find in the drugstore, and this palette shows both the best and worsts of the formula overall. The frostier shades seem to work the best and have no problem wearing all day (over a base, of course), while the more matte shades tend to lack in pigmentation and fade after a few hours (they don’t disappear, but they do fade noticeably).

The Glossover

coming-soon

Wet 'n' Wild Petal Pusher Color Icon Eyeshadow Palette Review, Photos, Swatches

B
For cooler complexions, I think this palette will work well.  Like the Blue had Me at Hello palette, there were a few shades that didn't quite hit the mark, but overall several shades worked really well.  I though the coppered rose shade was particularly beautiful in color and wished it had been more pigmented.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

8.5/10

Application

4/5

Results
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