Saturday, March 16, 2013

Best of February and March Roundup - GlamGlow, Chanel, Serge Lutens, Deborah Lippmann

Hello, This is a Best of Roundup post for the month of February and March.  I have been testing and using these beauty items for the last month and a half.   I am very excited about every item here, let's get started...

Skincare - GlamGlow Super-Mud Clearing Treatment

As early as I can remember when I started my beauty journey, my first facial mask was a mud mask.  I used to have combination/oily skin when I was younger, so mud or clay masks were perfect for deep cleansing my skin back then.  Over the years, my skin has become much drier and more sensitive, I can't use a lot clay or mud masks on the market because they can be drying and harsh for my skin now.  

A few months ago, I first sampled GlamGlow Tingling Exfoliating Mud Mask (shown in the small black tubes in the picture above) from Sephora and I liked it, but I thought the granules in the product can be hard on my sensitive skin.  Then I discovered GlamGlow Super-Mud Clearing Treatment during a more recent trip to the store and I was intrigued.  I was completely sucked in by the advertisement on the packaging.

Here is a brief description of what is does from the Sephora website:

This formula was clinically developed by GLAMGLOW® dermatological chemists to help fight all common skin concerns, including breakouts, discoloration, black and white heads, razor bumps and in-grown hair. 

It is clay and charcoal based and it contains six types of acid, Glycolic, Salicylic, Lactic, Mandelic, Pyruvic, and Azelaic.  I am familiar and have used products with the first three types of acid, but not the latter three.  One can use it as a full mask or spot treatment.  I experimented with it on my T-zone weekly for the last month and a half.  Although my skin is dry, but my T-zone can get very congested and I get occasional breakouts due to stress and hormonal changes.  This product is a good at-home substitute for professional extractions, it cleanses the pores on my nose like no other.  It also cleared up my zits in a day and Mr. Rola enjoyed using it as a spot treatment too.

It is not drying and actually quite soothing to use.  I have left it on anywhere from five minutes to twenty minutes, I always get a super nice glow afterwards.  I highly recommend it for combination/oily, oily, and skin prone to breakouts.

Makeup  - Chanel Precision Eyelash Curler and Serge Lutens Tient Si Fin Compact Foundation

Apart from Shu Uemura, Chanel Precision Eyelash Curler is my other favorite eyelash curler.  I have been using this tool for over a year now.  The width of the Chanel eyelash curler is slightly wider than Shu Uemura's, so it is very comfortable to use and easy to adjust for many eye shapes.  Unlike some other eyelash curlers, I do not have a problem pinching my eyelids with the edge of this one. 

I raved about Serge Lutens Tient Si Fin Compact Foundation on Instagram ever since I picked it up from Barneys New York.  I was initially matched with O40, but it turned out to be a tad dark for my skin.  I immediately exchanged it for I20 which is a much better match.  

I have been wearing it over liquid foundation every day, it is a great topper over any liquid foundation.  It gives good and buildable coverage with a finish that is semi-matte and natural if that is possible.  If you need less coverage or have oilier skin, you can certainly wear it alone.  This product is meant to be worn dry, not wet.  I haven't used the sponge that came with the compact.  I prefer to use a traditional powder brush with this product.  Flat top powder brush does not work with this product because it cannot pick up the powder.

The initial investment for the case and powder is pricey, but it is worth it.  The refill is half the cost of the initial price.  This is the most finely milled powder in a compact that I have ever used and I will be repurchasing the refill when I hit pan.  

If you are not familiar with Serge Lutens, please read this fascinating bio on him.  He was first a master in cosmetics and worked with Shiseido in the 80's and 90's and then he went on to become a legend in perfumes.

Nails - Deborah Lippmann Gel Lab Set

Image via

I first read about Deborah Lippmann Gel Lab Set on Instagram.  The nails photos looked amazing, so I had to get the set.  The set comes with a base coat and top coat that is supposed to give your nails the effect and shine of gel nails, but you get it without using UV or LED lamp and there is no need for acetone to remove the gel polish.  The set is meant to be used with regular polishes and easy removal with regular polish removers.

I like that my polish can remain chip-free for over a week.  Or course the chipping is more noticeable on darker color polishes compared to lighter colors.  The topcoat lays on thick and it is harder to remove compared to other regular topcoats.  The shine effect from the top coat does not last as long as gel, the finish becomes dull in less than a week.  

Overall, I am impressed with this set for being what it is.  There seems to be more and more gel topcoats on the market.  If there are other brands of gel topcoat that work better than this one, please let me know.

What are your current favorite skincare, makeup, and nail products?  Thanks for reading.  Until next post......

Saturday, February 23, 2013

All About Brows

Hello,  I am lucky to have born with full brows.  But as time passes with over plucking and tweezing, I am left with some miniscule bald spots.  For the most part, I can live without filling in my brows.  But there are times when I want to achieve a more polished and youthful look, having fuller brows to frame the face is key. 

Image via Google
Image via Google
Image via Google
Image via Google

I mostly rely on brow pencils over the years.  Occasionally, I also like using brow powder or eyeshadow because it creates a natural look that is not as harsh looking as you would get from pencils.  Therefore with pencils, I prefer to use ones that have a powdery finish to achieve a softer look.  I have been using three different brow pencils lately and they are all great in their own little ways...

Same order in both pictures:

Top - Rimmel Professional Eyebrow Pencil in 002 Hazel - Warmest brown out of the three pencils.  Great for brunettes with warm or golden highlights or redheads

Middle - Tom Ford Brow Sculptor in 02 Taupe - Cool grayish brown.  I blogged about it here last year.  The flat slanted tip is the best.  This sculptor is also the most water resistant

Bottom - MAC Veluxe Brow Liner in Brunette - Neutral brown that leans warm.  This is the softest and has the most powdery finish out of the three

From drugstore to high-end, I currently love all three.  They all come with a brush on one end for blending.  Have you tried these brow pencils?  What is your HG brow product?

Until next post......

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Up and Coming Beauty Bloggers Weekly Report


Lola of Lola's Secret Beauty Blog showcases how she stores her lip products in a special by request post.

Rachel from Rachel's Makeup and Skincare tries out La Licious Bath and Body Collection in their new Valentine's Day Scent and finds she is in love!

Olivia of The Unknown Beauty Blog has a fabulous giveaway featuring Luscious Argan Oil products from Eden Allure!

Rola's Fountain of Youth is now on Instagram, go see what she has been loving and doing lately!

Lindsay of The Beauty Think Tank shows off an oldie but a goodie in MAC Illegal Purple nailpolish, perfect vampy tips for Valentine's Day!

If you would like to be featured in a future Up & Coming Beauty Bloggers Weekly Report, please e-mail Lindsay at beautythinktank(at)gmail(dot)com!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Collective Instagram

Hello, Since I started Instagram three weeks ago, I have been very active and posting pictures almost daily.  

Inspired by so many beautiful things around me, I think I found my new playground...

Come follow me on Instagram!  Thanks for looking!

Until next post......