Sonia Kashuk Super Sheer Liquid Tint

I love the idea of a liquid blush, used alone or layered with a powder blush (to extend wearability).   My current favorite is Sonia Kashuk’s “Super Sheer Liquid Tint” sold exclusively at Target.  In the drugstore & mass-market arena it doesn’t have a lot of competition.

The shade I’m using is “Peony” and it gives a natural-looking pink flush to my cheeks.  Best thing is, the color seems to last throughout the day.  It’s easy to apply, wear it on bare skin or over foundation.  Simply use your fingertips to dab on skin.

This product claims moisture-boosting and anti-aging benefits as well, according to the Sonia Kashuk website.  Blue lotus, hibiscus flower and french rose are the ‘featured’ ingredients.

This is an exceptional value, as a little goes a long way.  In fact, be careful when dispensing the product, it’s got a pump, and most likely you’ll pump out more than you need.  Super Sheer Liquid Tint comes in three shades, “Poppy”, a coral shade, “Peony”, a pretty pink, and “Rose” a berry-brown shade.  Buy at Target, $9.99. 

Compare to – Benefit’s “BeneTint” and “PosieTint”, $29.00

The Bottom Line – If you like a liquid blush, you’ll love Super Sheer Liquid Tint.  And…what a deal at $9.99!

Sally Hansen Airbrush Legs

“Tanning and pantyhose are so yesterday”, states the Sally Hansen website and I couldn’t agree more!  So, when faced with the dilemma of wearing pantyhose or baring my pale, spider-veined legs to the world, I sought out leg makeup. 

It all started when, about a month ago, I bought a new dress and shoes for a fancy charity event I was attending with my Husband.  When I tried on my new purchase and proudly modeled it for my Husband, his response was “and…you’re wearing pantyhose with that dress, right?”  YIKES!  What’s a ‘pantyhose-hating, fake-tan fearing’ girl to do?

Enter “Sally Hansen’s Airbrush Legs” spray-on leg makeup.  It’s amazingly easy to use and gives the legs an instantly-smooth, even tone and light veil of color (just like pantyhose).  This product claims to cover freckles, veins and imprefections.  I don’t have freckles, but it defintely covered spider veins and small scars. 

It also claims to be water and transfer resistant.  It is!  How do I know this?  In order to test the wearability, I didn’t I shower for 2 days after I applied it.  I can honestly say, it lives up to it’s claim!  No rub-off on my clothes, bed sheets (or Husband, for that matter).  It stayed perfectly put until I showered.

It’s easy enough to apply, too!  Just spray the product into your hands, then apply to the legs like lotion.  It moves easily, until it dries (allow 60 seconds) – then it’s in place for the long haul. I purchased “Medium Glow” which is for light to medium skin tones (I would say more on the medium-toned side) and it gave my legs a bit of a bronzey-color.  I probably could’ve gone with the lightest shade, “Light Glow” and it would’ve looked more like ‘nude’ pantyhose.  Sally Hansen offers this product in 5 shades (look for the NEW, Enhanced Coverage version), a nice range of fair to a deep-bronzey, brown skin tone.  One word of caution, use this product only where it’s intended for – the LEGS!  Not to be used on the face!  Available at Ulta for $12.49.

Compare to – Dermablend Leg and Body Cover, $27.00

The Bottom Line – Bare legs are nice, but “Airbrush Legs” are irresistable!  

 

L’Oreal Paris Magic Smooth Souffle Makeup

I’ve read several reviews of this foundation with varying degrees of affection. According to some users, the jury’s still out … 

My experience, however, has been quite different.  I found love at first application!  Magic Smooth Souffle Foundation wooed me with it’s flawless coverage, without having to use a lot of product.  It’s not like other foundations, with it’s unique texture, like mousse (jello, really).  The formula is dreamy-soft and gives an overall natural, lightweight, matte finish. 

I simply apply it with my fingertips, but a sponge or foundation brush can be used.  I have normal-to-dry skin and found I didn’t need powder to finish the look (it’s fairly matte on it’s own).  There are 12 shades, I used #522 Natural Beige (a nice mid-tone shade, not too warm~not too pink).  Oilier skins may not appreciate this formula, as it’s got a silicone base, which can feel too slick for that skin type.  This foundation does NOT contain an SPF, so make sure to use one underneath! 

The packaging is pretty, too.  L’Oreal spared no expense on the weighty, square-shaped glass jar and fuschia-colored lid (though kind of heavy in a suitcase for travelers like myself).  I found it fairly easy to match my skin tone to the foundation shade and got the right color the first time!  Buy it at Target for $13.99.

Compare to – It seems this is a unique foundation formula.  I can’t find a ‘prestige’ or department store equivalent. Let me know if you can suggest one.

The Bottom Line – A little pricier than other drugstore foundations, but as L’Oreal says, “I’m worth it!”

Borghese Professional Brush Set

Brushes for a makeup artist are what a hammer and nail are to a carpenter – tools of the trade!  Without them, our work is compromised.  But good makeup brushes can be pricey, until now.  I have found an affordable set of high-quality brushes at none other than your local Costco!

Costco and Borghese have partnered together to bring beauty products to Costco customers for up to 85% less than the Borghese products sold at Bloomingdales.  This set of 10 full-size brushes includes 5 face brushes and 5 for the eyes.  I love the big kabuki brush, great for bronzer!  As is the case with most sets, some of the brushes are made of natural hair (the fluffy face and eye brushes), some are synthetic (concealer and foundation), and there’s even one duo-fiber brush for blending (looks like MAC’s Duo Fiber Face Brush).  Synthetic brushes are typically used with liquid and cream products and don’t absorb the product like natural hairs would.   The brush handles are long (as opposed to shorter, travel-sized handles), well-weighted and easy to work with.  This set even comes with a pretty brush bag. 

I’d recommend washing the brushes before using them.  Try baby shampoo in luke warm water –  swirl, rinse well and lay flat to dry.  Some shedding is normal. Available at Costco for $30.00

Compare to – Sephora Collection, 6 brushes and case for $60.00 

The Bottom Line – for less than a MAC Duo Fiber Face Brush you can have 10 brushes!  Do the math!

Jordana Easyshine Glossy Lipcolor

Jordana Cosmetics is celebrating their 25th anniversary with the launch of some exciting new products.  One is these new endeavors is, “Easyshine Glossy Lipcolor”.  Definitely not the first sheer, glossy, lip tint on the market, but what a steal at $1.99!  I was so seduced by the low price that I bought three.   The shade range goes from a pale pink, to a sheer peony blush to a deep raisin cream.  I purchased sugar cookie (mauvey nude), pink lemonade (summery coral with a hint of sparkle) and sweet strawberry (sheer blue-ish red).  An added bonus is, they smell wonderful!  Sugar cookie actually smells like fresh-baked cookies.  Yum!

Easyshine is easy to apply, moisturizes dry lips and adds a fun ‘pop’ of color.  Since it’s a sheer gloss, it doesn’t stay on all day, so reapplication is needed.  This product is great for teens, tweens or an everyday, natural (not made-up) look.  I even wore it to the gym!  Available at Walgreen’s for $1.99.

Compare to-Prescriptives Lipshine, $17.50

The Bottom Line-amazing price point, smells good and fun shade range.  What’s not to love?

CoverGirl’s LashBlast is a LashBust!

A Lash Bust!

Covergirl’s ad campaign featuring Drew Barrymore as the spokeswoman for the new LashBlast Length mascara worked!  I rushed  to Target and purchased a tube–afterall, Drew looks amazing; fresh, current…and those lashes!   CG claims LashBlast Length will lengthen lashes by 80%.  If you’re a fan of CG’s original Lashblast mascara, you might find this  new, improved version adequate at best.  I, however, was disappointed by this product.   I was hard-pressed to notice even a 20% increase in length.  In fact, I would categorize this formula as more of a “natural” application; perfect for those who don’t want to look like they’re wearing mascara.  The packaging is attractive enough and CG boasts an ultra-long brush with more than 450 bristles.  Sorry to say, those 450 bristles just don’t do the trick!  Must be the elasta-nylon formula!  Not “elasta” enough if you ask me.  On the upside, I did find that CG kept their promise of “no smudging or flaking”.  $7.29 at Target.

Compare to-Lancome’s “Definicils” High Definition Mascara, $24.50

The Bottom Line-doesn’t quite live up to its “LashBlast Length” name.  Better marketed as a ‘natural’ formula!

Milani HD Advanced Concealer

Milani does it again!  This time, they’ve taken on YSL’s Touch Eclat Concealer–and won!  Slick packaging and a technologically advanced formula provides hydration, smooth application and beautiful coverage.  The HD Advanced Concealer comes in 4 shades and with a “click” of the pen-like applicator, the concealer comes out of the brush-side tip.  So fun to use!  The best part is, it’s portable with no need to have a concealer brush!  Milani claims their “good-for-your-skin” formula softens the look of wrinkles and reduces age spots by more than 50% in 28-days.  I’m only on Day 2 and madly in love!  $6.99 at CVS.

Compare to-YSL Touche Eclat, $40.00

The Bottom Line-Run, don’t walk to your nearest CVS.  This is a must-have!

Milani Glitzy Glamour Gloss

The Milani Cosmetic line really caught my eye at CVS.  Their colors are strikingly vibrant with intense pigments (reminiscent of MAC), targeting a multi-cultural customer.  In fact, Alicia Keys wore several Milani products at the 2009 VMA’s, so I had to “keep up with the Keys”! 

After much deliberation, I decided on the Glitzy Glamour Gloss.  It comes in 10 rich shades,  of which I purchased two–“First Class” a blue-based plummy pink and “All About Me”, a fiery red.  I love the metallic, hyper-perle effect.  Very unique for a liquid lip color!  It goes on smooth and silky, though after I pressed my lips together, it felt a bit tacky.  It’s a fair trade-off, though, as the beautiful shades and metallic effects are so cool!  I found it had great wearability–lasted throughout the day with minimal touch-ups (it’s fairly opaque–not sheer, like a traditional gloss). 

Wear it alone, or over lipstick (which I tried and liked).  My biggest gripe is the aroma;  intense (a little too intense) butterscotch-not at all what I expected!  $6.99 at CVS.

Compare to-MAC Cosmetics Dazzleglass, $18.00

The Bottom Line-despite the (overly-done) fragrance, the shades and metallic effects dazzle!  I’d buy it again!

Neutrogena’s 2 in 1 mineral concealer

A few months ago Neutrogena launched its Mineral Sheers Concealer Kit SPF 20 in 4 shades.  You get concealer on 1 side of the pot, translucent powder on the other side of the pot—thus, “2 in 1”.

What you may not know is, the consistency of this concealer is sticky and tacky.  Not good for anyone with dry skin–like me (that could entail a lot of tugging and pulling in the delicate eye area)!!!  And to use powder underneath the eye area is a sin–especially past a certain age when fine lines and wrinkles make their debut.   If you have combination or oily skin, than this is a great option!  I recommend using a concealer brush, rather than your finger for easier application.  It gives good coverage and would be especially effective for covering break-outs or skin imperfections.  Use the translucent powder to “set”.   Again, I recommend using a small, fluffy brush rather than the foam ‘puff’ that comes with it.  One of the best features of Mineral Sheers Concealer is the SPF 20.  Titanium dioxide (the active ingredient) is a physical sun block that accounts for the high SPF.  Also, be careful with the shade range.  Normally, I would use a “light” shade, but had to go a shade darker in this range.  I ended up with “medium” (actually the deepest shade), which looked too dark in the pot, but when applied was just right.  This concealer goes on lighter than it looks in the packaging (due to the titanium dioxide).  $12.99 at CVS, Target & Walgreen’s

Compare to–the only thing I could find that came close is Joey New York Semi Permenant Concealer and Powder duo, $32.00.  Does not have the SPF.

The Bottom Line–a great choice and good value for combination & oily skin types.  Buy one shade darker than usual.

Physican’s Formula Shimmer Strips voted “Best in Beauty Aisles”!

There are so many bronzers and shimmer powders on the market right now, even in the drugstores!  Physician’s Formula “Shimmer Strips” is not new, but I recently tried it and love it!  It’s a ‘custom bronzer’, blush and eye shadow all in one.  Nothing wrong with a 3-in-one product!  Good Housekeeping magazine voted Shimmer Strips “Best in Beauty Aisles” a couple of Summer’s ago.  Use all the shades together (put a big, fluffy powder brush into all 5 ‘strips’/shades at once) for the ultimate ‘tan’ glow or use the shades seperately on the eyes or cheeks.  I purchased the “Waikiki Strip”, which gives a shimmery, peachy glow.  I use the entire palette (mixed together) on my decolletage and shoulders and the lightest, golden shade on my brow bone and tops of my cheekbones.  I even use the deepest, brownish/bronzy shade as an eyeshadow.  The ‘peachy glow’ is not too orangey and looks natural and pretty.  As is the case with all Physician’s Formula products, “Shimmer Strips” is hypoallergenic, fragrance-free and Dermatologist approved.  $12.95 at all drugstores!

Compare to–Bobbi Brown’s Apricot Shimmer Brick, $38.00

The Bottom Line–silky, smooth texture and soft, shimmery color.  Subtle bronze shade and not too orangey.  Easy to use.

CoverGirl’s Outlast Lip Stain

This morning I was pleased to see a segment on ABC’s “Good Morning America” about ‘cheap beauty buys’.  Apparently Diane Sawyer’s makeup artist has just discovered how to make Diane look her best AND spend less!  She must read my blog…Anyway, she referenced 10 products (all color cosmetics) under $10.00.  I promise, I’ll check them out and let you know my thoughts.

Now, for my review on CoverGirl’s Outlast Lip Stain.  I just used it to do demonstrations at a women’s conference this past weekend (and wore it myself).  Interesting product.  It looks and feels like a magic marker.  A challenge to work with, though I love the wearability—meaning, it does last.  It’s transfer resistant!  CoverGirl touts, “pen-like precision”.  Because the tip is like a pen (fine-tipped marker), you will get precision.  I bought 2 shades, both of which are pretty bright (“Plum Pout” and Everbloom Kiss”).  The company says you can appy once for a “flush of color”, twice for more intensity.  This is where it can get tricky.  The color is so intense, even on the first application, it can look garish.  I recommend applying it to the bottom lip first, then press your lips together.  Then apply more on the top lip, if needed (before it dries).  You must wear gloss over this product!  CG suggests this a ‘tip’ on their website, as though it’s an option.  It’s not an option!!!  You’d be miserable without some sort of gloss over it.  I’d really like to try 2 other shades, “Flirty Nude” and “Teasing Blush” to get a better feel for this product.  Both shades were sold-out at the Target near my house, and are also “unavailable” on Target’s website.  I’d love to hear your experience withOutlast, if you’ve tried it.  $7.29 at most drugstores!

The Bottom Line–I’m having a hard time committing to ‘yay’ or ‘nay’.  Could be difficult to use for the lipstick challenged!!  May need a little practice…

Regenerist Filling and Sealing Wrinkle Treatment

Yes, another Olay product!  In my humble opinion, they’re the geniuses of mass-market beauty products.  Regenerist Filling & Sealing Wrinkle Treatment is a must-have for anyone who wears foundation.  The consistency is simliar to a foundation primer, but  this comes with treatment benefits!  Olay claims “it penetrates the wrinkle surface to immediatley reduce the appearance of fine lines and lock in moisture”.  Use it after your daily moisturizer, under foundation.  It allows makeup to glide on smoothly–I especially like what it does for my eye area, under concealer.   This is a great value at $18.99– significantly less expensive than a lot of the “makeup artist” foundation primers.

The bottom line–a ‘seamless’ foundation primer that provides treatment benefits at an affordable cost!  Available at all drugstores! 

 

 

Makeup that won’t age you!

simplyagelessI love CoverGirl’s “Simply Ageless” Foundation. This is the perfect marriage of a foundation, skin care, and sun protection (it has an SPF 22).  CoverGirl has partnered with Olay to add treatment to their cream foundation.  You can see a white swirl in the product—it’s Olay’s Regenerist Serum.  Simply Ageless  in the targeted anti-aging, “over 40”  category with Ellen DeGeneres as it’s spokeswoman.  I don’t know about you, but I think Ellen looks great for 50.  I found the creamy formula to blend easily (comes with a sponge) and give nice coverage.  It has a clear lid so you can see the exact color of the foundation.  Best of all, nice shade range (15 shades).  

The bottom line—a foundation with Olay treatment and high SPF, what more could a girl want?  Available at all drugstores!

Pixi’s Rose Lip Treat

One of my favorite recent purchases has been Pixi’s Rose Lip Treat.  I found it at Target (also available at beautybridge.com with free shipping).  It’s a nourishing tinted lip balm that boosts moisture with ingredients like pure rose extract and sodium hyaluronate.  It also boasts aloe vera and vitamin E.  There are only 2 shades,  #1-Lip Nude is a natural fawn color (warm shade) and #2-Lip Rose is a natural rose (cool shade).  They’re handy, portable and come in a twist-up portable stick.  Perfect for the beach or a dinner date!!!  Available at Target for $12.00.

Compare to-Bobbi Brown Tinted Lip Balm, $18.00 

The Bottom Line–cheap, 2 great shade options and it feels good on the lips!