Monday, February 27, 2012

Sana Collagen Mist Toner Review

Price: $9, bought mine from

Pros: First off, if I am not mistaken, our skin cannot absorb collagen because it is molecularly too large. Regardless, this is still a very good toner that immediately sooth and hydrate your skin upon application.  I think it really helps my skin cope this winter. In bottle, it looks like a light gel consistency but when spray, it is liquidly. It is also very long lasting, making it very economical. I started using it in October last year, it is now February, 4 months later and I have only used up half a bottle (I use toner twice a day).

Cons: Nothing really

Rating: 5/5

Disclosure: The product(s) being review was purchased by me for personal use or review purpose.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Sephora Glossy Gloss Review and Swatches

Price: $10 for 15ml/.5oz

You get a lot of product for your money, 15ml. It is semi opaque with a non-sticky texture. It has decent lasting power, especially for a non-sticky lipgloss. I applied the gloss over a lipstick and after breakfast, my lips are still pigmented with a glossy sheen. I also find it moisturizing.

The color I have is Rusted Rose, which is a neutral brownish rosy pink, a my lips but better kind of color. The website description said there is shimmer but I don’t really see any. They are very fine compare to say those from BE Buxom where you can actually see the glitter in the tube.

Rating: 4.5/5

Disclosure: The product(s) being review was purchased by me for personal use or review purpose.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

How Safe is Your Lipstick?

Yesterday, I came across an article from the Washington Post about FDA recent testing result on lead in lipsticks (click here for full article). Similar study was done in 2007. In its most recent study, the FDA picked 400 popular shades and found that half of the top 10 lipsticks that contain lead are from L’Oreal and Maybelline (both are under the same parent company, L’Oreal). Actually I am surprise that even natural brand like Burt’s Bee is on the list.

FDA’s Full List of 400 Lipsticks Containing Lead

If you are like me, you are probably wondering how does lead get into lipstick? According to the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, this occurs when raw materials or pigments use in lipstick are contaminated with lead. Also, FDA studies only contain a very small sample of all the brands and shades that are available on the market. At this point, it is hard to tell which product is safe and which is not. On FDA website, when asked if there is a concern about the safety level of lead found in lipsticks, the answer is “no”.

“Lipstick, as a product intended for topical use with limited absorption, is ingested only in very small quantities. We do not consider the lead levels we found in the lipsticks to be a safety concern.”

Whether or not you agree with this statement is a matter of personal opinion.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

When to Toss Out Your Makeup?

It has probably been almost a year since I goes through and clean out my beauty stashes.  I ended up with a bag full of stuff to toss out, either due to the color not working with my skin tone, allergic reaction, and last but not least, expiration.  It makes me feel bad, like I am being wasteful.  On the other hand, what do you do with color that is not suited for you (well, I should have try to return what I can)?  More importantly, you should not be using old cosmetic, it could cause break out and other skin irritation. It makes me wonder, how long do you keep your cosmetic before you throw them out?

I am not very strict but here is a rough guide line how long you should keep things.

-Mascara – no more than 3 months (this is the one I am careful about because I do not want eyes infection and I never share my mascara with anyone, period!)

-Liquid Foundation/Tinted Moisturizer/Primer - 12 months.  I follow the same guideline for anything that is liquid or cream base.  I also smell and check the consistency if I have not use it in awhile.  If it changes color, smell funny, or separate even after shaking, I'd toss it out.

-Powder Foundation/Blush/Eyeshadow - up to 24 months.  With powder, I think you have more room to decide how long you should keep a product.  It does not go bad as fast as liquid base and easier to sanitize.  Sometime I use a cotton pad wet with alcohol and wipe both the container and lightly top layer of the product.  Wait for it to dry, if the top harden, just scrape it off lightly, a thin layer with a butter knife.

Off topic, I was looking forward to trying Alba products because they are natural.  Unfortunately, the toner burned my skin the second I applied it.  Both sunscreen gave me horrible rashes that lasted almost two weeks.  At first, I did not know what caused my rash until my husband and friend got the same allergic reaction from using these sunscreen.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

LaVanila The Healthy Baby Block SPF40 Review

Price: $20 for 2 oz, available at

Pros: Almost identical to the regular LaVanila sunscreen, yet green tea is higher on the ingredient in this Baby version (which I prefer) and it is cheaper too. Green tea has been known to not only calm down irritated skin but help protect your skin from sensitivity to the sun. Aside from loving the ingredients, I also love the consistency and texture. It is not too thick, not too thin, not too greasy or matte, just a happy medium in texture and sheen. It is also a bit hydrating as well.

Cons: I cannot wear this sunscreen on its own as it does leave a noticeably white cast on my NC20 skin tone. I have to wear base makeup on top otherwise I’ll look like a Geisha (okay, not that bad but still…).

Overall: Perhaps I would have given this sunscreen a perfect score if it were not for the white cast because I think this would be perfect for outdoor or the beach. I like the option to wear my sunscreen alone, with a bit of concealer for trouble spots. I don’t want to layer too much when I am just running errand or outdoor on a hot sunny day.

Rating: 4/5

Disclosure: The product(s) being review was purchased by me for personal use or review purpose.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Josie Maran Argan Oil Review

Argan oil come from Argan tree’s green nuts which mostly grown in Morocco, with benefits for both skin and hair. It has extremely high level of vitamin E and fatty acid that protect and heal the skin from oxidation.

Price: $14-$96 for 15ml to 4oz (120ml)

I have not use Josie Maran Argan Oil on my hair so this review is strictly on it performance as a skincare product. JM Argan Oil is light in yellow and odorless. It goes on light, non greasy and absorb quickly and easily. I also use this oil in the morning as a moisturizer under my makeup, something that I don’t normally do with oil because it can be too greasy. At night, I layer this over serum and sometime as a middle layer, under another moisturizer if I feel I need it, this combination is enough to keep my in dry skin hydrated and flakes free.

Comparison: I just want to do a quick comparison of different oil type I used and it may help you decide which is best for your skin type. I have tried DHC Olive Oil which is very rich and hydrating. It does take a long time to absorb and is quite greasy, suited for dry to very dry skin, and I would recommend night use only. DHC Rose Treatment Oil (discontinued but may be similar to other rose oil out there) is in the middle in term of richness, absorption, and sheen. I see rose oil normally recommended for mature and dry skin type. Out of the three, argan oil is the lightest and my favorite thus far. It is probably suited for combination to dry skin, light enough for even day time use.

Rating: 4.5/5

Disclosure: The product(s) being review was purchased by me for personal use or review purpose.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Naruko Tea Tree Acne and Oil Out Targeted Treatment Review

If you are new to Naruko, it is a Taiwanese natural skincare brand. This Oil Out Treatment is an acne spot treatment with 2% salicylic acid and .025% sulfur as active ingredients and it also contains tea tree oil.

Price: $16 on

Pros: It is quite effective in shrinking my pimple, takes about 2 – 3 days for a medium size pimple to go away.  It contains all natural ingredients.

Cons: I find it a bit drying for my dry skin during this winter. Also, since it contains sulfur, it leaves behind a white mark. However, it is not a big deal for me because it is fine if I use it at night or something on top in the morning.

Overall: It is a decent product. Unfortunately, for my dry sensitive skin, I still prefer my HG Dermalogica Clean Starts Bedtime Breakouts Rescue. The Dermalogica treatment is gentle enough for me to use twice a day even, over a large area as a preventative treatment.

Rating: 3.5/5

Disclosure: The product(s) being review was purchased by me for personal use or review purpose.


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