Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Review: Guerlain Orchidée Impériale Eye & Lip Treatment

Let me preempt this review by letting you know that I did NOT win the lottery. No, I did not purchase this $198 eye cream. I was lucky enough to receive 2 generous mini tube samples of the eye cream from a lovely employee at one of my favorite Shoppes Drug Marts. By all calculations, the samples were worth an astounding $50+ (holy cow!).

According to the good folks over at Guerlain, the Orchid has amazing regenerative and long-lasting capabilities, so they decided to spend a good decade researching this phenomenon. They narrowed 30,000 species of Orchids down to THREE rare species of Orchid that most exemplified this longevity best. 

Guerlain has dedicated an astounding amount of time and money into this venture, even building a dedicated "farm" in China where they grow these very rare Orchids. Additionally, they have a re-habitation program where they re-introduce some of these rare Orchids back into the wild where they are a rare and endangered species. 

So what does this all mean for your skin? Because of the Orchid's long life span, this cream is meant to bring youth back to your skin. While I don't understand the science of it all (the use of Orchid extract is pretty much exclusive to Guerlain), I do know this: this eye cream is amazing!!!

I have been using this cream for about 3 weeks now, every morning and night. The first thing I noticed was how incredibly light it was. It is thick in appearance and texture, but your skin will drink it up entirely in MINUTES! I reapplied a thin second coat almost every time, as I am a fan of thick and almost-greasy eye creams! :) 

My eye area looks taut and bright. My fine lines are non-existent! And best of all, my concealer does not crease, pile, rub off, or move in any way-shape-or-form! I didn't even have to use my beloved Smashbox Targeted Fine Line & Pore primer!

What am I going to do?!? How will I afford to buy this amazing eye cream?!? LOL! I shall find a way...this stuff is amazing! In the meantime I will see if I can find another sample of it to tide me over until I save up enough pennies to afford this baby. ;)


Monday, March 21, 2011

REVIEW: Smashbox High Definition Liquid Concealer

Before Smashbox launched their Hi-Def concealer, they had their Camera Ready Full Coverage concealer which was a cult-fave. Camera Ready was a stick concealer and could be build up to an extremely thick coverage...if you had the right shade you could even build it up to cover a bruise!

Their new concealer, High Definition, is very different because it is an extremely light finish with light coverage. Because of its texture, I have not been able to build it up to a FULL coverage concealer. If I carefully dab instead of stroke it on, the most coverage I can get out of it is a medium coverage. (Thank God I have been using an awesome eye serum that has helped minimize my under eye circles! Thank you NeoStrata!)

That aside, it truly is a natural finish! Set it with a dab of your favorite powder and it will last beautifully all day long!

The good folks over at Smashbox claim it has 9% Vitamin K in it, a powerful coagulating vitamin that has been claimed to help heal under-eye circles the way Vitamin K has been used in other brands' eye creams. But if you read the ingredient list there is no hint of Vitamin K anywhere on the ingredient list. Upon further questioning them, I was told that it was a "proprietary formula". Ummm...ok?

What it REALLY does have is caffeine to help drain puffiness away, Angelica extract to reduce dark circles, and soy to minimize redness. 

My only qualm is that I wish it came in more colours. Currently, it is only available in 6 shades which accommodate a lot of people, but another 2-4 shades would be awesome!

It's only $22 and well worth it for someone who wants a subtle daytime under eye concealer. If you are looking for something to cover up blemishes this might not be the best option for you. 

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Saturday, March 19, 2011

REVIEW: Olay Pro-X Eye Restoration Complex

I will not sugar coat this, let me be completely clear as to what a pile of crap this stuff was.

The second ingredient from the top is Cyclopentasiloxane, a silicone. The fourth ingredient from the top is Dimethicone, another silicone. These are the only ingredients in this cream that help you gain the illusion of reduced wrinkles because silicone bends the light to create the illusion that your wrinkles and pores have disappeared. 

As I have said before I try to stay away from products with loads of silicones in them, and with good reason. 

For starters, silicones are the main ingredient in primers. The purpose of primers is to create the illusion of flawless skin so that your foundation goes on more evenly and smoothly. Well, when used in skincare, its because the manufacturers of that product want to create the illusion of an even canvas.  Silicones in skin care do the same thing...they fill in your lines, pores and wrinkles to create the illusion of a plump, poreless skin. Your wrinkles haven't gone ANYWHERE!!! They are simply hiding under all that silicone. 

Also, Environment Canada cautions against the use of silicones in skincare as they feel more research needs to be done into its safety.

At $60 for a half-ounce tube, the people over at Olay are taking us for fools. For only $5 more you can get the amazingly rich and nourishing Benefiance eyecream from Shiseido. For less than half that cost you can get a natural alternative from Burt's Bees, or something gentle from La Roche Posay (the #1 recommended brand by dermatologists in Canada), etc etc etc

But here is the kicker. Its the 21st century. It's 2011!!!! And Oil of Olay STILL TESTS ON ANIMALS. 

According to some reviews I read online, people love the texture of this cream. But my skin is so used to products that actually absorb, so my eye area felt really dry and tight with this eye cream on.  Plus it wore horribly under my concealer, causing it to "pile" and seperate.

Thank god I had a free sample of this stuff...because it just affirmed what I already knew about them. They are a horrible brand!

Save your money folks...

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Friday, March 18, 2011

REVIEW: Biotherm Skin-Ergetic Non-Stop Anti-Fatigue Moisturizer

When I first picked this cream up, I wanted to grab the "Cream" version as my skin leans more towards dry skin than "Normal/Combination". But I figured with us going away on vacay (we are back, and it was lovely-thank you very much for asking) plus with warmer weather right around the corner, maybe I should just get the lighter gel-cream version.

It is 97.5% of natural origin, has an amazing fresh & fruity natural fragrance, is a lovely light texture that absorbs beautifully and is loaded with antioxidants to protect your skin. There are no petrochemicals, no mineral oil, no parabens, and loads of awesome antioxidants!

Some of these amazing antioxidants include Lycopene, Grape & Pomegranate Polyphenols, Neohesperidin from Bitter Orange, and Apple extracts. These ingredients come together to provide you with a broad-spectrum antioxidant protection to help you battle all the enironmental skin aggressors you may encounter in your day-to-day life.

This was THE ONLY daytime moisturizer I used during my two-week Caribbean vacation and my skin was just BEAUTIFUL and dewy the entire time. About half of the time I used the Skin-Ergetic Serum underneath it...and boy am I glad that I didn't buy the "Cream" version! The Serum and Gel-Cream together felt richer and thicker than the products used separately or with other products...a lovely coincidence!

I sometimes wore make-up on the resort, and the Skin-Ergetic provided a fantastic base. I never felt greasy and loved knowing that I had loads of anti-oxidant protection despite my almost-constant sun exposure!

Even now that we have returned from our vacation and my tan is slowly and surely peeling away my face is the ONLY part of me that isn't peeling! Coincidence?!? I dont know...but I do know that this Skin-Ergetic moisturizer has found a permanent place in my skincare routine!

At only $49 for a 50mL (1.7oz) jar, this natural beauty is a steal!

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