Thursday, February 21, 2008

Benefit Bad Gal Lash

First let me say that I am a mascara fiend, I am rarely without mascara and I have two or more in my makeup case at any given time. So I have tried quite a few and I still keep coming back to Benefit's Bad Gal Lash.

I first used this product in Fall of 2005 and used it faithfully until the Winter of 2007 when I decided to cheat and caved into the hype of Diorshow. I liked Diorshow but it was still missing "something". It wasn't living up to the hype for me which left me very disappointed. At this point, I should have gone back to Bad Gal Lash. But I didn't, I decided to continue the search for the perfect mascara.

At this time, I was also using Pout Big Lash. I was lured in by the beautiful tube and the promise of 300% your lashes' natural size. Let me just say, don't waste your time of money of this one.

I next bought Awake's Optic Force mascara. Awake is very high end makeup and skincare line from Japan and is only available in a couple of places in the United States. This mascara is very unique in that it has two ends (one base coat, the other top coat). The base coat end has a W shaped brush because it is supposed to enhance the middle of the lash for extra volume. Optic Force came very close to my love of Bad Gal Lash except that it is hell to remove. Even my Biotherm eye makeup remover had problems getting it off.

Next, I decided to try Urban Decay's Big Fatty Lash Plumper. I love everything from Urban Decay so I really thought that this could be my Holy Grail mascara. Well, big and fat is exactly what it didn't do to my lashes. After one coat, it left a natural look; after two, decent sized lashes. However, this is not what is is supposed to do. Then to top it off, the tube broke.

I ran to sephora one day after work and I got two tubes of mascara. The first is Cargo Texas Lash (supposed to make your lashes Texas sized) and yes, my beloved Bad Gal Lash.

I haven't used the Texas Lash yet but I have returned my original love of Bad Gal Lash. Its like getting back together with "the one that got away".

Friday, February 15, 2008


For the past year or two, there has been a lot of hype around SLS free products (sodium laureth sulfate). Any kind of sulfate is the detergent of the shampoo or other product that it contained it. Apparently there are studies that link it to cancer, however every person that quotes these "studies" becomes extremely vague when I begin to question them about the all the outcomes of the study or about the groups of people that have been used. I remember in an older issue of Cosmopolitan, that question was posed to a derm who said that there is nothing wrong with SLS, It is the most gentle detergent and will not harm as long as it is properly used (like washing the shampoo out of your hair and not leaving it on all day).

However, the SLS free product craze still continues. the leader of this craze was Jonathan Antin and his line of terrible products. a product with no SLS does not foam when it is appiled to the hair or body. Many derms and cosmetic chemists say that foam is extra and is only used in many formulas because the mjority of people want products do foam and don't feel that their products work unless they are foaming up.

Some natural product brands insist that their foam and detergents in their products come from natural sources. Well, they might have originally come from natural sources but after they have been treated and turned into the ingredient in the product, They are far from their natural state and are just like using SLS in your products.

Some people may prefer to use products that are SLS free and that is their choice but I'm sick of people not doing their reserach and thinking that "because a product is natural that its good for me". if something is not 100% certified organic by the USDA, it is not natural.

The Body Shop Haul

My latest beauty product purchse was from The Body Shop. I have always felt very confident in The Body Shop's products. the only product that i ever got from them that I didn't totally love was the Mango body scrub and it wasn't bad (just a bit too oily for my taste). as you might have guessed I own a bunch of stuff from them and never hestitate to buy something new that just came out.

I bought a bunch of thing, most of which were new to me. I already owned the Mango shower gel and body butter (my favorite moisturizer ever) so I didn't need anything else from the Mango line. I was totally out of my Coconut products, so I bought the Coconut shower creme, scrub, and body butter.

They had a new Japanese Cherry Blossom scent that I wanted to try even though I have bought Cherry Blossom and Japanese Cherry Blossom from Bath and Body Works (and am rapidly getting over those smells). The Body Shop version of the scent is just wonderful, its very light and floral. This one will be perfect for springtime. I bought the body butter, the body puree (a lighter lotion), and the shower gel. I think this scent is better than the Bath and Body Works version and is highly recommended.

The last few things that I picked up were the Strawberry body butter and the Strawberry body wash. These two products were actually the reason that I even went into The Body Shop. Last month, I was won over by the scent of the Me! Bath body scrub in Strawberry Kiwi and ended up buying two of them just to realize that I had nothing to use them with. I have found that stawberry is hard scent to find if you don't want little girl's Lipsmacker products from Limited Too in your shower.

I also got a Cassis Rose home fragrance oil to burn (a rose with a bit of berry in it) and a reususable shopping bag with all of the philosophies of The Body Shop printed on it.

The clear winners so far - the Mango body butter is my favorite product ever; it hydrates and makes my skin smooth. it also has calmed skin and chemical burns and the tub is huge and will last forever. The Coconut scrub is fantastic too. It has a true coconut scent with a creamy texture and bits of real coconut husks for getting the dead skin off. I haven't gotten to use the Japanese Cherry or Strawberry products yet so I can't really comment on their standouts.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

March 2008 Issue of Lucky

Philosophy makes bubble baths in the same scents as they make some of their 3 in 1s. hmmmm...

The other day, i got the March issue of Lucky in the mail. The beauty section was good overall but not outstanding (or maybe I just expect wayyy too much from the March issue because I look forward to spring products for so long). but I still did create some new "I wants".

And they are...

Smashbox Green Room Eyeshadow Quad in Blossom - "four shimmery earth tones with extracts from the healing moringa tree seed"

Chloe Eau de Parfum - "like it vintagery glass flacon (a riff on the pleated sleeve of a chloe blouse), this is both classic and unique: rose, cedar, lychee, and an unplaceable powdery element"

Ojon Dry Conditioning Shampoo - a dry shampoo that sprays on, smells like vanilla and coconut, and is really hydrating - I really need this one.

Make Up For Ever Flash Color on No. 19 - "a richly pigmented balm with the exact look of molten metal: we love it as a liner; for a glinty smoky eye"

Christian Dior Diorskin Forever Extreme Wear Flawless Makeup SPF 25 - "the featherlight liquid consistency makes this incredibly hydrating and gorgeously sheer, while sunscreen protects"

Korres Natural Products Wild Rose Serum - "excellent over or under makeup, this leaves a dewy glow - and the repairing rose extract smells delicately floral"

The Chloe perfume is in one of the perfume strips in the magazine and it smells fantastic but I just can't get enough onto my skin to decide how it will smell on me. This might mean that is would be too light for any kind of extended wear throughout the day. Or it could mean that they didn't saturate the strip enough (more likely). This is available only at Chloe and Saks so I have some searching to do (however having to search only makes me want it more - walking into the Sephora that is 20 minutes away from me is almost too easy).

Jean Godfrey June's column (my periennal fav from the magazine) made me laugh but really didn't sell me on any of the products that she discussed.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Retail vs. Etail

This is continuation of my thoughts on 3 in 1s. Last night after I wrote my post, I went up to take a shower and I thought I would see how many 3 in 1s that I actually have (being an avid collector of bath and body products). Well here are the results; Victoria's secret - 2, Bath and Body Works - 12, and Philosophy - 11. I was actually in shock over how many that I have and will only be using as shower gel. My only explanation (and a weak one at that) is that 3 in 1s seem to have the best scents available in retail stores.

However, I now have discovered e-tailors and that I can get any of their 400-500 scents in ANY kind of product that they offer because they make everything fresh instead of it sitting in a store for a couple of months. I was in love with everything that I saw on the Bathed and Infused site and on the Coconut Hut site. Of the two, I have only ordered from Bathed and Infused so far and I will review the products when they have totally cured and I can give them a fair review.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

3 Uses from 1 Product?

I have been thinking about the point of 3 in 1s (Philosophy and any others). I think the concept is that its one product that can do everything and its supposed to simplify life. Wait, I don't think that - I know that. However, my skin and my hair are not alike at all except that they are both dry. My hair is much more complex from my skin because of color treating and tons of mechincal damage. So why would I use something that isn't meant to treat that?
So i tried a 3 in 1 as shampoo. I was in SHOCK about how terrible it truely was. My hair had no shine and was a mass of tangles. The color was so stripped out that I will have to be redying sooner that I thought. This is not recommended for anyone. So that gets rid of one use of the 3 in 1.
Trying it as a bubble bath lead to similar disappointment. A few weak bubbles that didn't last at all even though I think I used up almost 1/8 of the bottle. Another huge disappointment.
3 in 1s are useful for shower gels. PERIOD.
Now don't get me wrong, This is not an anti 3 in 1 post (sort of). I have tons of 3 in 1s (both from Philosophy and Bath and Body Works). I adore them as shower gels. I just feel that the concept doesn't work and that they should either be marketed only as shower gels or maybe as 2 in 1s of shower gel and bubble bath (if they foam up more).

Monday, February 4, 2008

Life is Beauty and Beauty is Life

This is my new home for all beauty related news and postings. About me - I know a huge amount about beauty especially bath and body stuff, skincare, and haircare. My life is focused on all things related to beauty and the science behind it.

Caveat- I only report on high end beauty. If you try to save money by buying skincare at The Dollar Store, we are not going to get along. Period.