Thursday, May 30, 2013

Prestiche Essential Oil Bar Soap

RATING (out of 5 stars):3.5 stars

COST: $16.99

THE SKINNY: This little soap from Prestiche comes with a great big scent.

Created with essential oils, vitamins and natural ingredients, it smells fantastic and cleanses well.

But it is pricey. The bar is small. 

It leave skin feeling great, but I could not get over the sticker-shock.

Maybe it would be a nice item for a gift basket. Or maybe the folks at Glossybox will put another Prestiche item in an upcoming box.

KEEP OR TOSS: Keep. Like the product, just not sure it is affordable.

CHECK IT OUT: Prestiche has a good-looking line of bath products. I might wait for a sale.

-- Tested by Carrie

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Elite Models Matt Liner

RATING (out of 5 stars): 3.5 stars

COST: $15

THE SKINNY: I am digging everything matte right now -- matte finished nails, matte eye shadows and this matte eye liner from Elite Models.

The Glossybox find went on amazingly easy and dried quickly for a liquid eye liner. The brush was nice and thin, making for an easy and mess-free application.

Plus the color was fantastic.The deep brown would compliment almost any eye color and the flat finish was stunning paired with a neutral eye.

Sadly, this product is very difficult to find. Made in France, it appears to only be available in the United States through Glossybox.

KEEP OR TOSS: Keep. I am seriously loving matte liners right now.

CHECK IT OUT: Elite promises American distribution soon. Be on the lookout for it!

-- Tested by Carrie

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Model Co. Cheek + Lip Tint

RATING (out of 5 stars): 1 star

COST: $24

THE SKINNY: Who doesn't love a two-in-one product? I was really excited to see the new Model Co. Cheek + Lip Tint in a recent Glossybox (my FAVORITE subscription service).

But this cheek and lip stain, stained everything including the skin on my fingers.

The color was nice, albeit a little too rosy for me, and created a natural sunkissed look on my cheeks. It was just too pink for the lips.

The gel would be great if there were a better way to apply. But having pink fingertips for half of the day is not cool.

KEEP OR TOSS: Toss. Who wants pink fingers?

CHECK IT OUT: We've liked other Model Co. products in the past.

-- Tested by Carrie

Monday, May 27, 2013

Say Yes to Grapefruit Brightening Face Wipes

RATING (out of 5 stars): 2 stars

COST: $5.99 for 25

THE SKINNY: This doesn't really feel like a cleansing wipe to me. The cloth has a weird texture and the liquid is rather sticky. I feel like I need to rinse the product off.

The grapefruit essence, meant to fade dark spots and boost your skin's glow, didn't bother my eyes. It did a so-so job removing makeup. It didn't really do anything for my skin.

The wipes smell good, too.


CHECK IT OUT: Yes to Grapefruit includes moisturizers in the product line.

-- Tested by Shay

Friday, May 24, 2013

Two Cosmetics Duo Eye Shadow

RATING (out of 5 stars): 2 stars

COST: $6.99

THE SKINNY: This small eye shadow from a recent Ipsy box contains one shimmer and one matte shadow in the same color. Mine came in a pretty, almost neutral pink called "Heartache."

While the color was OK, the shadow itself was disappointing. For starters, both were a little dusty and was one of the few eye shadows to ever bother my eyes.

Maybe it's because mine are pink, but color really lacked intensity. I added several layers of shadow and never felt like it made much difference.The shadow didn't last more than a few hours, even with a good primer.

It's sad because Two Cosmetics is a great company. For every product sold, the company donates a second product to a nonprofit that benefits women. I'd be willing to try a different color just to help the cause.

KEEP OR TOSS: Toss. I need shadow with more lasting power.

CHECK IT OUT: Duo Eye Shadow is available in nine colors.

-- Tested by Shay

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Marc Jacobs Daisy Sunshine

RATING (out of 5 stars): 4 stars

COST: $65 for 1.7 ounces

THE SKINNY: We love Marc Jacobs' Daisy perfume. So when Daisy Sunshine came out earlier this year, we had to have it.

It didn't disappoint. This is the classic Daisy mixed with citrus, and the scent is light, feminine and finishes with a good whiff of oranges.

I wish the scent lasted longer, but it is summer and you don't want a heavy fragrance anyway.

The bottle is bright and happy, too.

KEEP OR TOSS: Keep. This fragrance is interesting and perfect for warm weather.

CHECK IT OUT: Because it's a limited edition, this product can be a little hard to find. It's available at Sephora.

-- Tested by Shay

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Enspri Ulta Collagen

RATING (out of 5 stars): 1.5 stars

COST: $99.50

THE SKINNY: Ultra Collagen is an anti-aging mask made from a powdery, marine collagen. It's meant to provide intense hydration.

But this product is a lot of work. It's sold in two parts, the powder and a clear gel that contains vitamins and the binder for the masque.

You mix it up. The result is an almost fizzy watery good that you dab onto your face and let dry.

It smells awful. Then it hardens on your skin, and it's one of the more uncomfortable masques I've tried because it's so stiff.

Once it dries, rinse off with warm water. Luckily, it rinses easily.

My skin didn't look or feel that different. It was softer, but it also felt a little greasy.

KEEP OR TOSS: Skip this one. It's really expensive to not get real results.

CHECK IT OUT: Fine a full list of ingredients at the Enspri website.

-- Tested by Shay

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

philosophy Miracle Worker

RATING (out of 5 stars): 2 stars

COST: $58 for 2 ounces

THE SKINNY: Moisturizers from philosophy are really hit or miss, in my book. Miracle Worker is an almost miss because the lotion has a strange, almost slick texture to it, kind of like Hope in Jar, which we weren't too fond of. (Miracle Worker is the anti-aging version of Hope in a Jar.)

Miracle Worker did leave my face feeling soft, but not anything something less expensive would do.

It does have that gentle quality found in almost all of philosophy's products. But I just wanted more from it.

KEEP OR TOSS: Keep, but only until the sample is gone.

CHECK IT OUT: If you're patient, philosophy runs all kinds of deals on its website.

-- Tested by Shay

Monday, May 20, 2013

Tarte Maracuja C-brighter Eye Treatment

RATING (out of 5 stars): 4 stars

COST: $38

THE SKINNY: My eyes have been tired for a while. And that's OK as long as they don't look tired.

Thanks to Tarte's Maracuja C-brighter Eye Treatment, my eyes are looking better than ever. After a couple of weeks of using this light cream, my eyes are less puffy and the circles have faded dramatically.

I really had no idea an eye cream could do this much work. And I am only using it half as much as the label suggests.

Tatre's treatment is infused with Vitamin C and maracuja fruit to hydrate. While you can use it twice a day, I have found that a super light layer around bed time is enough. The cream is super smooth and light and while it does costs $38, this little pot will last forever.

It is a solid investment.

As an added bonus, the cream is non-irritating. Even after getting a little in my eye (oops!), it did not burn or sting.

KEEP OR TOSS: Keep. The cream felt great and gave my eyes a pick-me-up.

CHECK IT OUT: You can get this item right from Tarte (look for specials) or retailers such as Sephora.

-- Tested by Carrie
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Friday, May 17, 2013

Yes To Blueberries Eye Firming Treatment

RATING (out of 5 stars): 3 stars

COST: $19.99 for 0.5 ounce

THE SKINNY: Yes to Blueberries' Eye Firming Treatment is supposed to show results in fighting those crows' feet around your eyes in seven days.

I'd actually believe it. This is a nice, smooth cream that I found to be non-irritating. It leaves my eye area moisturized and feeling good, even after a night of beer and cigarette smoke (theirs, not mine).

It does a decent job fighting dark circles and tired eyes, although prefer the cooling power of Ole Hendrick Ultimate Eye Lift Gel.

This is a cost effective option that works. It's made with blueberries, beeswax and paracress flower, a flowering herb that is helpful in easing the pain of toothaches.


CHECK IT OUT: Yes to Carrots recommends using this product alongside its Daily Repairing Moisturizer and its Deep Wrinkle Night Cream.

-- Tested by Shay

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Living Proof Prime Style Extender

RATING (out of 5 stars): 4 stars

COST: $20 for 5 ounces

THE SKINNY: Wow. And I mean wow. Prime Style Extender from Living Proof gives my hair such a boost. And it's true, the staying power does last into the next day (although my hair is too fine and gets dirty looking too easily to ever skip a shampoo.)

I've used it layered with Redken Guts 10 volumizing spray and by itself. Either way, it left my hair feeling thick and healthy.

It works by coating each strand of hair, making the style hold better and repelling dirt and gook that can weigh down strands. It also works as a detangler.

Prime did irritate my scalp after a few days of continuous use, as most products tend to do. It will work better for me to use this product every few days, especially on those days when I have a lot going on and need my hair to stand up to a busy schedule.

Good thing, too, because it's expensive.

KEEP OR TOSS: Keep. I've already ordered a full-size tube.

CHECK IT OUT: Apply Living Proof Prime on damp hair. Work a little dollup, and style as usual. Living Proof offers free shipping (no minimum purchase) and samples with every order.

-- Tested by Shay

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Juice Beauty Hydrating Mist

RATING (out of 5 stars): 1 star

COST: $22 for 6.75 ounces

THE SKINNY: The idea is great. Create a light product that can cool your skin, hydrate and tone.

The delivery is awful. This product smells like a rest stop bathroom. It's definitely not something I want to spray on myself to feel cool and refreshed.

The mist is made with rosehip, ylang ylang and juices. It really shouldn't smell as bad as it does.

KEEP OR TOSS: Toss. What were they thinking with the scent?

CHECK IT OUT: This product gets great reviews on the Juice Beauty website. But on the Ipsy site, they're a lot more mixed because of the smell.

-- Tested by Shay

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

NYX Roll On Shimmer

RATING (out of 5 stars): 3.5 stars

COST: $5

THE SKINNY: This is an affordable fun that delivers decent color with a lot of glittery sparkle.

The rollerball application works surprisingly well. Apply to your eyelids with an easy stroke. Be careful using a makeup brush, though. I tried to blend the shadow a little bit and found that it and the glittery basically brushed right off my lid, even with a good primer underneath it.

That being said, the shadow only stays in a place a few hours and gets horrible creases. Luckily, the tube is little smaller than the average tube of lip gloss and drops right into your purse for touch-ups.

I love the dark purple for it's drama, but it's hard to blend. So layer a darker shadow with a lighter shadow such as salmon or nude for the best effect.


CHECK IT OUT: NYX Roll On Shimmer comes in 16 colors.

-- Tested by Shay

Monday, May 13, 2013

New York Streets Dry Shampoo

RATING (out of 5 stars): 2 stars

COST: $17.99

THE SKINNY: I'm finding dry shampoos to be very hit or miss. This one from New York Streets is another miss in my book.

The problem is two-fold. First, the shampoo goes on as a very light mist and doesn't seem to deliver much action. My hair didn't look much different after I used it. Second, the shampoo smells kind of sickly sweet and the scent lingers. I try to use it in an open area, so the fragrance doesn't turn my stomach.

If I'm going to put up with that smell, I need the shampoo to really work. That means pulling the day's grime out of my hair and adding some volume back in.

KEEP OR TOSS: Toss. Stick with TRESemme's dry shampoo instead. It works well and it has a better price tag.

CHECK IT OUT: New York Streets has a whole line of hair products.

-- Tested by Shay

Friday, May 10, 2013

Pantene Texturizing Sculpting Wax

RATING (out of 5 stars): 3.5 stars

COST: $4.97

THE SKINNY: If you need a strong texturizing wax, Pantene has one that works well. The only drawback it's uber sticky. When you touch your fingers together, you gets threads of product. It's that sticky.

But I love it. Surprisingly, it doesn't weigh down my fine hair or make it look greasy. And after I apply it, the excess product rinses off my fingers with water.

This creates texture and volume. And it adds a little shine to my dishwater blonde hair.

KEEP OR TOSS: Keep. This is an inexpensive option that's fun to play with.

CHECK IT OUT: You can find Pantene Texturizing Sculpting Wax in any drugstore. And probably the grocery store, too.

-- Tested by Shay

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Yaby eye shadow

RATING (out of 5 stars): 2 stars

COST: $3.15 each

THE SKINNY: These eye shadow samples for Yaby came in a recent Ipsy box and are meant to go inside a GlamRX compact. The small compact has a magnetic bottom so little tins of eye shadow or blush or whatever stick and don't rattle around.

Sadly, Yaby eye shadow isn't that good. The two colors -- a sandy color aptly called "sand dune" and a turquoise called "so vein" -- are pretty but go on thin and chalky. They don't last long either, even with primer.

Plus, the tins are just too small to get a regular eyeshadow brush into.

KEEP OR TOSS: Toss. I have so many eye shadows, I don't need to keep the ones I don't like.

CHECK IT OUT: If you want to try them, there are dozens of colors from which to choose on the Yaby website.

-- Tested by Shay

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

She's A Tease Volumizing Hairspray

RATING (out of 5 stars): 1 star

COST: $5.99

THE SKINNY: This hairspray from the Not Your Mother's brand smells awful. Really awful. I can't even describe the smell, other than to say it's sharp and supposed to be apple. (It's not. If apples smelled like this, no one would ever have tried to eat one.)

Beyond the scent, the hairspray is mediocre. I'd say it's closer to a spray-in texturizer than a hold-style-in-place hairspray. The product is light and just leaves my hair feeling a little gritty.

The hairspray is supposed to fight humidity.

Luckily, it's not terribly expensive.

KEEP OR TOSS: Toss. I do not want to smell this product again.

CHECK IT OUT: People either love this product or hate it, according to the reviews on Ulta.

-- Tested by Shay

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Smashbox More Than Primer

RATING (out of 5 stars): 2 stars

COST: $42

THE SKINNY: I've been a fan of Smashbox primers for years and especially love the luminizing forumla. But this one, formulated to erase dark spots and brighten your complexion, is disappointing.

For starters, it's creamier than the other Smashbox offerings, which tend to be more waxy. The creamier version, while easier to apply, doesn't offer the same coverage. So I don't see that Smashbox "camera ready" result.

Smashbox More That Primer also seems to skimp on the primer part. My makeup didn't last any longer.

And I didn't notice any change in my dark spots after a few weeks of use.

That's disappointing for a brand that has worked so well in the past.


CHECK IT OUT: Smashbox recommends using this product twice a day.

-- Tested by Shay

Monday, May 6, 2013

Color Touch Eye, Cheek & Lip Glow

RATING (out of 5 stars): 4 stars

COST: $17

THE SKINNY: I didn't have a lot of hope for this color (teen tone) when I pulled it out of the box. I figured it would be too light and pinky for my fair skin. But it's not.

This creamy highlighter from Skinn Cosmetics adds a warm, pretty pink glow to my cheeks and eyes. I think it's better than blush for spring.

The bonus is it's easy to apply and lasts all day.

You can apply it with a brush or your fingertips.

KEEP OR TOSS: Keep. This is going to be one of my beauty staples.

CHECK IT OUT: Color Touch Eye, Cheek & Lip Glow comes in five colors, although the website is a little difficult to navigate.

-- Tested by Shay

Friday, May 3, 2013

Mark Glow Baby Glow Hook Up Lip Gloss

RATING (out of 5 stars): 3.5 stars

COST: $6.50

THE SKINNY: I had low hopes for this one. I don't know why. But I was surprised. This is a thicker gloss that is incredibly buttery and not too shiny. It feels great on my lips, and the color lasts about two hours.

My gloss is in "honey," a rosy nude color that is just a smidgen lighter than my natural lip color.

The Hook Up part of the product is a coupler that lets you snap several products, such as lip gloss and mascara, together to make it easier to carry around.

This is a great, inexpensive lip gloss that I will have to try in other colors.

KEEP OR TOSS: Keep. I love the way the gloss feels on my lips.

CHECK IT OUT: Glow Baby Glow comes in six colors and can be found on the Mark website.

-- Tested by Shay

Thursday, May 2, 2013

La Fresh Travel Light Makeup Wipes

RATING (out of 5 stars): 2.5 stars

COST: $1.99 for eight

THE SKINNY: La Fresh's wipes are cool and soothing. Because of that, I really like using them after a workout. They wipe away that flushed feeling, along with sweat and dirt.

But they are not good for removing makeup. Maybe they're too wet. But they just smeared eyeshadow and mascara around my eyes.

If you're looking for something that will dissolve makeup, try a different product. Everything else I've used works better.

KEEP OR TOSS: Keep, but only for my gym bag.

CHECK IT OUT: These wipes came in a recent Ipsy box.

-- Tested by Shay

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Tarte Amazonian Clay 12 Hour Blush

RATING (out of 5 stars): 4 stars

COST: $26

THE SKINNY: This blush came in the Tarte Carried Away Collection, a Sephora exclusive for Christmas 2012. I had been using Nars blush in Orgasm (like nearly everyone else on the planet), but I found Tarte's blush in Adventurous to be a warmer color and add a nicer glow to my cheeks.

A light dusting of the blush really does last for the day, which is impressive.

Tarte is big into its Amazon Clay products, an ingredient said to absorb oil from the pores and leave skin feeling hydrated. It doesn't clog my pores or leave my skin feeling irritated.

KEEP OR TOSS: Keep. I like the color.

CHECK IT OUT: See all the available colors on the Tarte website.

-- Tested by Shay