Thursday, February 9, 2012

Awesome Drug Store Products - Part 2 - The Foundations

These are the Foundations / Tinted Moisturizers from my awesome Drug Store Haul:

Foundations / Tinted Moisturizer:
Neutrogena Mineral Sheers Loose Powder Foundation
Neutrogena Healthy Skin Glow Sheers Moisturizer
Neutrogena Healthy Skin Enhancer Moisturizer (Linked to my previous review)
Revlon New Complexion Compact Foundation
Revlon Color Stay Mineral Mousse Foundation (unfortunately soon to be discontinued)

L'Oreal Magic Perfecting Base

L'Oreal True Match Super Blendable Powder

I'll start with the Primer:
L'Oreal Magic Perfecting Base is a nice sheer base for your foundation. I tried it both after applying tinted moisturizer and without using tinted moisturizer. I like the formula, it's a little thicker than most - but goes on easily and sheer. I don't like the jar, I keep getting gunk in my nails from sticking my finger in the jar. If this was a tube container, I would like this product much more. However, the product itself works very well at controlling oil throughout the day and my makeup stayed put.
So I will give this an A- on my grading scale. Great product, poor delivery.

Now for the Tinted Moisturizers:
You already know how much I LOVE the Neutrogena Healthy Skin Enhancer, and if you don't - please read up on it's awesomeness here.

Neutrogena Healthy Skin Glow Sheers Moisturizer is a completely different product. Very nice sheer coverage, great anti-oxidants, and a good color range. However, I found this to be targeted toward Normal to Dry skin. So it complements it's counterpart well as the Skin Enhancer is targeted toward Normal to Oily skin. If you plan on using this with a mineral foundation go for it. It worked very well with the Glow Sheers mineral foundation and the Bare Escentuals I love so much. It became very shiny by the end of the day with my oily skin, but I doubt that would be a problem for drier skins. 
I give this an A for dry skin and a B- for combo / oily. Great moisturizer and sheer coverage, but not awesome for oily skin. Go with the Healthy Skin Enhancer for combo / oily skins.

Everyone loves foundation? Well, you might love one of these:
Neutrogena Mineral Sheers Loose Powder Foundation has been repackaged from the old brush / container to an actual jar with separate brush included. The product has very sheer coverage, but very build-able and when combined with a tinted moisturizer had a nice medium coverage. The included brush is dreadful, and I used mine once and tossed it. I highly recommend a nice fluffy kabuki brush for application (budget options available at your local Target in the Eco-tools and Sonia Kashuk lines). I was not terribly impressed with it's staying power even with a primer, and I had to re-apply around lunch time.
I give this a B. Nice coverage and shades, but fades on oily skin.

Revlon New Complexion Compact Foundation is just plain awesome. I used compact foundation for years before Bare Escentuals (I'm talking 15 or so years here...) and always found they disappeared or clogged pores or just generally didn't cover as well as liquids. But since I like fast application and a very light texture, I generally still went with any number of the compact foundations available. 
The coverage is Medium and can easily be built up to Full with a dry sponge application. I apply with a slightly damp sponge as this makes it easier to blend. The color range is excellent, and it has some serious staying power. I would recommend a moisturizer underneath if you have drier skin. This is going to find a permanent home in my makeup routines (Think quick Saturday application when heading out and about).
This awesome foundation gets an A+. Did I mention it feels very light on the skin?

Revlon Color Stay Mineral Mousse Foundation will unfortunately be unavailable shortly. It's being discontinued and I really don't know why, because it's really nice liquid foundation. So if you like liquids and have a local Ulta that still has a tube or 2 of this, give it a try. Very light on the skin, though application was a bit tricky. I used my fingers and got a nice full coverage, but had to work very quickly as it dried fast. Probably would have been better off with a damp sponge, but I didn't have one available. Coverage stayed all day and didn't really get shiny at all.
This gets an A- and a totally depressing "discontinued" disclaimer. 

Since the one liquid foundation I tried is being "discontinued", I thought I should at least provide some information on another liquid to try. I looked up on under the Best Products another liquid foundation with Sunscreen (please people, make sure you get your SPF!). I found that L'Oreal True Match Super Blendable Makeup SPF 17 Sunscreen
is a great option for Normal to Oily skins, and when used with moisturizer is also great for drier skin. So if you are a liquid foundation fan, this might be great option for you.

Last - the Powder:
L'Oreal True Match Super Blendable Powder turns out to be really great powder. I will in fact be stashing this in my purse since my portable powder cracked about a month ago. Very sheer and does not appear white on the skin, this powder controlled oil for about 1/2 the day (depending on the foundation under it) and has a great range of shades. It came with a sponge applicator which I tried and immediately discarded. Go with a nice fluffy powder brush for application.
Solid performer gets an A.

Overall, I really liked the products I tried. I like knowing there are some excellent options for the budget at our local drugstores. I'll let you know about the other products in the next post.

Nothing to disclose, all of these products were purchased by me and for me at my local stores.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Awesome Drug Store Products - Part 1

I'm starting a project this week, largely directed at the teenagers in many of our homes (including my own pre-teen step-daughter) but also directed at the budget conscious among us. My Quest: Find the best drug store products on the market.

I started with research on which is one of my favorite sites to research products. I use the "Best Products" lists to try out skin care, so why not use them for makeup products.

Here is the Haul from Walmart and Ulta:

Lots of products to test out - though one you need to try immediately!
Maybelline One by One Volume Express Mascara is one of the top 5 mascaras I have EVER tried. Stop spending $20+ for a tube and get this one right away. Great volume and excellent separation, no smudging (even after a seriously sweaty workout) and killer brush. This product out performs just about everything I've tried.

The list of everything else - which I will be testing out over the next few weeks:
Foundations / Tinted Moisturizer:
Neutrogena Mineral Sheers Loose Powder Foundation
Neutrogena Healthy Skin Glow Sheers Moisturizer
Neutrogena Healthy Skin Enhancer Moisturizer (Linked to my previous review)
Revlon New Complexion Compact Foundation
Revlon Color Stay Mineral Mousse Foundation (unfortunately soon to be discontinued)

L'Oreal Magic Perfecting Base

L'Oreal True Match Super Blendable Powder

Maybelline Dream Mousse Blush
Maybelline Dream Bouncy Blush

L'Oreal Infallible 24 hr Eyeliner

L'Oreal Infallible 24 hr Cream Shadow
Maybelline Color Tattoo Cream Shadow
Maybelline Eye studio Powder Shadow
Revlon CustomEyes Shadow with Liner

Maybelline One by One Volume Express Mascara
CoverGirl LashBlast Mascara (Linked to my previous review)

All of these products were purchased by me, to the tune of approximately $80. Pretty excellent for 13 products.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Clarisonic Mia

Well folks, I know it's been a long time since I last posted. Funds and various other life intrusions are the culprit. But I purchased a new device that I thought you all should know about.

 The Clarisonic Mia is a sonic facial brush, much like a sonic toothbrush. There are all kinds studies regarding this product, that I'm sure you can research on the Internet. I certainly did, and looked at them with a rather skeptical eye. I was more interested in user reviews. So that is what I read about. In summary - this product along with a really great cleanser (the one included gets a pretty high rating on will clean your skin better than a washcloth.

So I just had to give a try. I purchased the brush from the SkinStore 2 weeks ago. I've been using it every day since. My skin feels smooth and clean when I finish using it, not dry or sticky as if there is still cleanser on my face. I can tell that I don't have nearly as many clogged pores around my nose (which is usually a cesspool of oil and makeup). My broken capillaries have not flared up or shrank in any way.

I read all kinds of reviews, many of them flattering and many concerns with it aggravating rosacea. I also talked with the Nordstom supplier who happened to be there the day I was researching and she mentioned she has very stubborn rosacea and started using the product 6 months ago. She had no discernible redness and mentioned that it has actually helped her. She did say to use the sensitive skin brush, which is what comes with the Red Mia.

Overall I've been impressed. My skin is very clean when I finish my scrubbing. Note: the product has a 1 minute timer so no over scrubbing for me! My face is noticeably smoother in that the forehead flakiness is gone and the chin pore clogs are almost non-existent. I have not changed anything else in my routine, and am still using a retinol in the evening and a salicylic acid gel during the day. I'm not using the same washcloth every day and cleaning the brush twice a week - so I think it's a keeper.

Anyone else using this product? Love it? Hate it?

Monday, October 11, 2010

MAC Venomous Villains - Photos!

As I mentioned, I picked up a few of the Villains...and they are really pretty great. 

From Cruella de Ville:
  • Darkly my Dear - blush
  • De-Vil - eye shadow
  • Wicked Ways - lip gloss

From Maleficent:
  • Formidable - nail polish
  • My Dark Magic - mineralize eye shadow
The blush is a nice deep rose color, which is looking good with that fading summer color. The De-Vil eye shadow is a shimmery copper color that is also looking great as a fall shade. I've got several base shades that look great with it - most pearly and peachy. The lip gloss was just for fun, and is a terrific hot pink. Looks nice with a raspberry shirt.

The Maleficent shades were largely fun shades. I love the polish on my toes as it's one of those shade-shifter types depending on the light. The eyeshadow is supposed to be a split pink / purple pot. But as you can see, mine cracked in shipping. So it has turned into a nice purple shade for a smokey eye.

Yes, I just picked my favorites, and am very happy with the selections. Nice fun packaging, and great color.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

MAC Venomous Villains Collection

Makeup and Disney, how do these go together? Well, MAC Cosmetics obviously thinks that one can get inspiration from Disney characters, and who am I to disagree when the collection is so fun and well thought out.

The MAC Venomous Villains Collection launched Monday 9/27 in the late evening. It's been talked about on the beauty blog circuit for months and now it's here. Interestingly, several of the shades have already sold out. I'm not big on collecting the MAC collections, but this one was a must see for me. I've loved the Disney Villains for a long time. I even bought a villains poster the last time I went (in 2003) and still have it, ready for framing. While I think the princesses and heroes of the stories are all wonderful, the villains are the most fun and ridiculous part of each story. Cruella de Ville has been a favorite for many years.

I've ordered a few items, including a smashing nail polish from my other favorite Maleficent's collection. I will post pictures when they arrive.

Please see this posting at Temptalia and her links to photos if you are at all interested, and order quickly. I suspect this is one of the most sought after collections for MAC and collectors get there early.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Bare Escentuals Modern Pearls Collection

The last installment of the QVC Bare Escentuals Pearls auto-delivery arrived as the Modern Pearls collection. It's an interesting kit of fall shades mixed with various pinks. I'll admit off the bat that I'm not a green eyeshadow fan, but this looks to have a fair bit of charcoal in it so I'm liking it much more than usual.

  • Cultured Pearl Eyecolor - light pearl pink
  • Modern Pearl Eyecolor - jade gray
  • Big & Bright Eyeliner - charcoal gray
  • Flawless Definition Mascara
  • Pink Pearl Blush
  • Brightening Pearl Mineral Veil
  • 100% Natural Lipgloss in Praline - plum rose
  • Wet / Dry shadow brush
  • Soft Focus shadow brush
  • Angled blush brush
I really like charcoal eyeliners, so this is a nice addition. Again These eyeliners are pretty average in staying power for the oily skinned gal, but have nice color payoff and the application is easy. The lipgloss is an excellent, non-shimmery shade of rose that I think is going to be great this fall. Matches so many of my rose blushes, that it's going to get a ton of use.

The eye colors are very pretty. I love the Cultured pearl shade of pink for the all over lid color. It pairs nicely with many of my shades, and also looks nice with the Modern Pearl shade. The swatch looks pretty green, but when I applied to my eyes, it came out as a nice deep shade that looks almost charcoal. The eyeliner especially highlights the deep quality of the shadow.

Overall, it's a nice kit - though I like the last one with the peach and navy the best of the four. Again, eBay is a great source for these kits - especially if you're only looking for a few pieces. Keep your eye on - it's possible the kit will show up as a special in October or November. It's another great value from QVC and Bare Escentuals.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Best of the Drugstore

Fall is coming. It's definitely back to school for many folks, and the rest of us are probably feeling the pinch of summer vacations or upcoming holiday shopping. So in honor of looking great while saving a buck or 10 - I present to you the Best of the Drugstore. Okay, well at least they're my drugstore favorites...

  1. Tinted Moisturizer - Neutrogena Healthy Skin Enhancer
    I've said it before, and I'll say it again - this product rocks. SPF 20 and retinol in a drugstore moisturizer. See my full review of this product here
  2. Mineral Foundation - Neutrogena Mineral Sheers (loose powder OR compact)
    Mineral Sheers foundations come in loose powder or compact,  and either product works great. SPF 20 starts you out, and I like to use the loose powder over the tinted moisturizer for a great looking natural face. All of it is a sheer coverage which is great in the summer and for teenagers. If you're looking for something with full coverage - look at the Revlon line of foundations for the ColorStay products.
  3. Mascara - Cover Girl LashBlast (original orange tube)
    This has got to be my favorite drugstore mascara. Every other one has disappointed me in some way. This one does everything I want and doesn't smudge through the day. See my review here for more information.
  4. Primer - L'Oreal Studio Secrets Professional Magic Perfecting Base
    This silicone based
    primer is great in small amounts when patted (not rubbed, makes a mess) onto the skin. It does all the good stuff many of the more pricey primers do for controlling oil and keeping makeup in place. 
  5. Blush - Maybelline Dream Mousse Blush
    This is a great blush for all skin types. It's whipped consistency allows you to build color on your cheeks as it dries down to a powder. The colors are sheer and very pretty, most have a shimmer to them. It doesn't seem to clog pores and doesn't fade much during a long day.
  6. Lipgloss - L'Oreal Infallible Gloss or Lipcolor Compact
    I have both of these in my desk drawer at work, and they get about equal play from me. The gloss is quick and easy and lasts quite a while. It's not terribly goopy either, so it's great for quick put-on-and-go usage. The Compact has a color, then a sheer topcoat. This stuff lasts for hours, but the 2 coats and the wait in-between can be annoying if you want something fast. 
That's about all I need for work and most teens would need for school. If you are looking for some eye shadows and eye liners you should check these out. Though - one caveat, I would use these shadows with a primer for long lasting wear (Urban Decay Primer Potion and Too Faced Shadow Insurance are readily available at Ulta - and worth the extra money. I haven't found a drugstore one worth a dime - yet).
  1. Eyeshadow - L'Oreal HiP Shadow Duo's
    They come in several shades, and duo's are great for creating a unified look. The color is fairly pigmented, thought it might take a couple passes to get an intense look. Highly recommend a brush application with these.
  2. Eyeliner - L'Oreal Infallible Never Fail Eyeliner
    I don't know that you're going to find something to compete with my Urban Decay 24/7 liners, but these are pretty decent. They are not highly pigmented, but this is nice because you can build up the color. Decent staying power, though it will slide a bit on oily lids (though primer seemed to help). This is a decent liner at a reasonable price.
  3. Eyeliner - Cover Girl LiquilineBlast Eyeliner
    This is another decent liner. It also is not as pigmented as the Urban Decay, but also does a nice job blending and building color. This doesn't stay quite as well as the L'Oreal but will also do better with primer and on normal to dry lids.
  4. Eyeshadow - NYX Shadow Palettes
    This comes straight from the Makeup Geek, who is a huge fan of these shadows. Again, a good primer is mandatory and these will need some building to get the shade just right. They are inexpensive and colorful for any one who wants to dabble in a little color.
I have purchased these products to play with them.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Hair Straightening Products

I have tried a couple of "no frizz" and "straightening" products in the last few months. I'd like to tell you about them, since I know some of my readers have thick and wavy to curly hair much like mine.

The first is Living Proof no frizz Straight Making styling cream. This has a nice smoothing ability, and my hair after drying was bouncy and straight. It definitely helped the drying process and made straightening easier. But it didn't give me much shine and had the best results after using a flat iron post blow-out. It also works well if you have mostly straight or straighter hair that is prone to the summer frizz. Overall it's a nice product, but a tad bit pricy and hard to find. The 8oz. bottle retails at Sephora for $35.

The second is Pantene Curly Anti-Frizz Straightening Creme. This product impressed me in a big way. My hair is shoulder length and very thirsty (especially in the summer), so it takes about 3 pumps of product to coat my hair. When I blow dry with a brush, my hair comes out nice and smooth - almost no flat irons necessary, unless I'm going for that stick straight look. My hair was also nice and shiny, which is unusual after a serious blow out. This gets a huge thumbs up from me. Economical and works, better than most of the high end serums and straighteners I've tried. Check this out at your local drugstore for around $6.00.

The last product I've tried recently is the Phytodefrisant. It's a relaxing balm, and I received a couple samples from Sephora. I've been using it when I style straight and it works about as well as the Pantene. I've not yet found a Phyto product that I didn't like, and this one stands up with all the rest. This line is pricey (5oz. for $35) and available at salons and Sephora.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Coach Poppy Project

So what's up with the cute poppies on the blog? It's a blog contest from Coach. Both bloggers and readers can be winners, which I thought was pretty cool. It's also another way to get some exposure to the blog.

Here's the scoop:
Readers grow the poppies by Tweeting. You can click a "black" or, in my case, "gray" poppy and it will fill in the Tweet for you. If you Tweet using the #CoachPoppy hashtag, it will grow the poppies on all sites. If you use MY hashtag #kimbers_corner, it will grow the poppies on my site. You can also click the "Like" button to like the project on Facebook.

Readers can win handbags if a handbag appears in the poppies, you should click it.

Readers can Follow the trail of poppies by clicking on that link at the upper left of the page. You can see some new blogs (which can be fun!) as well as get a chance at finding a surprise like the handbags.

Bloggers win if their site appears in the top 10 list of all blogs being Tweeted about. I don't expect to win, but I do think this is a fun way for Coach to connect with bloggers and readers alike. I've always liked their bags, and what a fun way to show it off.

So go ahead and Tweet or Like and Follow the poppies. Grow Poppies Grow! #CoachPoppy #kimbers_corner

You can participate in the project by following this link

Monday, August 9, 2010

Maybelline the Falsies Volum' Express Mascara

So I got sucked into another drugstore mascara purchase. Largely because this got a few good reviews, and I want to give you as many inexpensive options as I can. While I love Diorshow, who can really afford $22-$24 for mascara on a regular basis?

Maybelline recently released "the Falsies" version of their Volum' Express mascara. Interestingly, it performs very much like the Colossal Volum' Express - though I like the brush better here. The formula is pretty wet, but doesn't seem to clump (yay!) so be careful when applying or you will have some smudging. The brush is what they are calling the "spoon" brush. It's just a bit curved, with the bristles inside the curve being a tad bit shorter than the bristles on the edges. It's great for getting up close to the lash line - but still seems to leave a bit of mascara on my lids. I'm sure I don't have the technique down yet.

As for how this looks when applied - I love the volume I can get with it, and it does do some lengthening. It's not super at lengthening though, so if you want super length you'll need a different mascara. The volume is great, and the color is great. I wouldn't recommend more than 2 coats though or you will start to look like Tammy Fae Baker (spider lashes! scary!). No smudges for about 7 hours, and if you have dry eyelids I would imagine this would be all day. My super oily lids smudge a bit after 7-8 hours.

Overall, this is a good mascara if you have normal to dry lids and are looking for volume and length. If you have oily lids - I'd stick with the Cover Girl LashBlast (orange tube). It appears to be widely available, and I purchased mine at Ulta.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Benefit POREfessional

I believe I mentioned that I needed to sample Benefit POREfessional before buying. Well, sample it I did. Stopped in Ulta last week for a few supplies and decided to check this out. The sample in the store turned out to be a little runnier than the bottle I purchased, but was still a good indicator of how it would work for me.

This is meant as a makeup primer / pore hider. It's oil free (huge plus for the oily skinned girl like me) and can be used under or over makeup. Yep, I said over makeup. It's silky and smooth with just a hint of tint. It blended right over my tinted moisturizer and didn't disturb it. My pores look smaller and smoother after application and appear that way for several hours. The nice thing is that you can touch up with it if you have a dinner date and no time to run home. I thought it fought my usual shine problem very well and compares favorably with my favorite primer - Clinique Pore Minimizer Instant Perfector. It also has the added benefit of not affecting the finish of my mineral makeup. It applies smoothly over the POREfessional and has no added shine or texture. 

This is now appearing in several retail chains including Ulta and Sephora for $28. It's fairly pricey and almost double what I pay for the Clinique - but it's a larger bottle, so I'd say it will just stop you from purchasing as often. It's a pretty impressive product and I've been testing it in 90+ degree weather for the last 2 weeks. So its a great consideration for those that have a desire to hide the appearance of their pores and control shine.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Urban Decay Naked Palette

This has been my one big beauty purchase this summer. Urban Decay always has some of the best shadows, richly pigmented and sometimes a little sparkly. So the Naked kit, with it's neutrals and non-sparkle set of 12 shadows, 2 liners and primer was a steal for $44.

What a terrific set of color. I see several neutral eye looks, and at least 3 smokey eye looks that can be accomplished here. Most neutral eye sets don't include such terrific black / grays along with beautiful dark mauve / pink shades.

Included in this set:
  • Primer Potion - Original
  • Zero 24/7 Eyeliner - black
  • Whiskey 24/7 Eyeliner - brown

Eyeshadow shades:
  • Virgin
  • Sin
  • Naked
  • Sidecar

  • Buck
  • Halfbaked
  • Smog
  • Darkhorse

  • Toasted
  • Hustle
  • Creep
  • Gunmetal

If you are looking for a collection of great matte and shimmer shadows in just about every color you would "need" for any trip - I think this is it. At $44, I don't know that you can get this quality and quantity anywhere else. I'd highly recommend picking this up at Sephora or Urban Decay. Keep in mind, this already sold out at Sephora once and they just announced receiving their second shipment.
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