| Beauty: Product Reviews Archives | Beauty: Product Reviews Archives

Recently in Product Reviews Category

Stila-One-Step-correct.jpgClaims: This innovative, triple-swirled helix serum instantly color corrects, brightens and covers skin imperfections for a flawless face with no fuss. 

This primer, color corrector, brightener and anti-aging skincare serum instantly makes imperfections disappear, reduces lines, wrinkles, pores and pigmentation, and hydrates, controls oil and improves skin texture.

The revolutionary new product contains 3 color-correcting brighteners:
  • Green tone instantly neutralizes redness and conceals blemishes
  • Lavender tone counteracts sallow undertones for a vibrant, energized look
  • Peach tone brightens, illuminates and helps diminish the appearance of sun spots
Our take: We aren’t going to lie and say the eye-catching, tri-color design wasn’t the first thing to attract us to the Stila One Step Correct, because it absolutely was. We’re also not going to say that on our first try, we weren’t a little disappointed that all of our skin imperfections weren’t magically erased as it claims. We still needed to use concealer on some old acne scars that have stubbornly decided to stay put on our cheeks. But, with one and a half pumps of this serum slathered on our faces (that absorbs super quickly, and feels nice, cool and smooth going on), our skin took on a nice, glowing property. Not like this-stuff-makes-our-face-greasy glow, but a nice, underlying glow. 

Once we put on our makeup, we definitely noticed a difference in the look of our complexion. It was more even, but not in a fake, too-much-makeup kind of way. Throughout the day, our oily skin was less slick, and our makeup stayed put all day. This doesn’t happen normally, so we were very much impressed. 

Whether our pores and pigmentation have been reduced or not, we honestly can’t really tell, but as a face primer over moisturizer, this stuff works great. We can’t imagine putting on our mineral foundation without it anymore. It’s pretty pricey, but after forgetting it at home over the holiday weekend and seeing the difference in our final made-up look, we’d gladly spend extra for it! $36,
Diptyque-Violette-Candle.jpgLook up the definition of “luxury” in the dictionary, and we’re fairly certain you’ll find a picture of a Diptyque candle. Seriously, there isn’t a candle chicer or more luxurious on the planet. And when it comes to the Diptyque Violette Candle? Our senses almost can’t take the amazingness.

A combination of violet and powdery iris notes create a fragrance so enticing, so intriguing, so utterly divine, we find ourselves pining for the scent at every hour of the day. It’s heady without being cloying, and fills the room with such a lush floral fragrance, you’ll feel as though you’ve stepped into your very own garden of paradise.

The Diptyque Violette Candle retails for $60 at

Kate-Sommerville-Discovery-Kit.jpgReady to start your gift giving brainstorming sessions but don’t know where to start? For the beauty junkie, a sample kit is always the best way to go, and one of our new favorites is Kate Somerville’s Discovery Kit.

Get your gift recipient (or yourself!) one step closer to radiant skin with this sampling of Kate’s best sellers. A clear plastic zipper bag (great for traveling, btw) comes stocked with the Gentle Daily Wash, Quench Hydrating Face Serum, Total Vitamin Antioxidant Serum, Nourish Daily Moisturizer, ExfoliKate Intensive Exfoliating Treatment, and two other sample creams.

We loved the foaming gel face wash because it removed all our makeup, but didn’t leave our skin feeling stripped. The 60 mL size is still going strong after daily use for three weeks, as you only need a small amount to get a good lather. The 15 mL jar of the ExfoliKate is marvelous for sloughing away dead skin cells (thank you, dry winter air). It’s an enzyme exfoliator with a slight roughness to it, that tingles just a bit, but leaves your skin ultra smooth. Our favorite gem of the bunch would definitely have to be the Nourish Daily Moisturizer. It’s ultra light-weight, super fast absorbing, and perfect during the pm for our oily skin.

Normally, this kit runs for $90, but from now until November 30, Kate Somerville is offering 30 percent off with coupon code KSFF2010Grab this goodie bag for yourself or a lucky friend/relative for just $60!


FreshStart.jpgWe wanted to love TRESemme’s FreshStart Dry Shampoo. We really did. Five bucks and change for a drugstore dry shampoo that would lend us a helping hand on a busy (or lazy) morning? Yes please! ::sigh:: We were sadly disappointed, however. 

On our first day with the product, our hair was freshly washed, so we coaxed a greasy-haired friend to be our guinea pig. Just as instructed, we shooooook the bottle up, held the nozzle six inches from her scalp and started to spray her roots. Now, just for reference, our friend has thin, straight, highlighted light brown hair that gets oily just by breathing too deeply around it. We went a little crazy on that first application, applying way too much of the FreshStart Dry Shampoo. We had essentially shellacked her head with a wet spray that quickly transformed into a white, powdery mess. “Surely, this is what needs to happen for it to work its magic,” we said, waiting patiently as instructed before brushing and styling as normal. 

After brushing out the powdery residue, her hair was…well…not as greasy, but as dull as unfinished wood. We chalked it up to over-application. 

A few days later, we purposely didn’t wash our own hair (which is straight, semi-thick and oily, and dark), to give this stuff another go (we believe in second chances, after all.) We started at our oily bangs, and moved to the flat, weighed down roots at the back of our head. Following instructions, and applying a more appropriate amount this time, we noticed the white powder build-up again. Though the clay in the product is to cause for this, we assumed it was soaking up the second-day oil. Well, long story short, our hair wasn’t as greasy, but it definitely wasn’t fresh, and the cheap suede texture FreshStart left in our locks was pretty icky. We’d give it a 4/10 if we had to rate it, even for the price. Honestly, we prefer cornstarch-based baby powder for a quick oil touchup (soaks up some oil, without the nasty residue and texture), or the pricier (but more effective) Oscar Blandi Pronto Dry Shampoo for $11 (1 ounce) or $19 (2.5 ounces).

Almay-Concealer.jpgOK, so sometimes, prestige makeup brands (think M.A.C., Nars, Lorac, etc), are really worth the price tag. They deliver on their promises. Their products last on your skin and don’t rub off the moment you put your hand up to your chin in an extended, deep thought. But sometimes, you can find the same powerful punch in a very valuable package. 

Such is the case with Almay’s Clear Complexion Concealer. Now, we’ve tried a lot of concealers in our days. We have oily, acne-prone skin that tends to scar easily when we just can’t resist the naughty pop. So finding a concealer that stays in its place, covers well but doesn’t look caked on, and blends nicely is sort of (very) important to us. The medium color works perfectly with our tan skin tone, and isn’t too pinky-beige like some other concealers in that color range. Almay’s covering gem has salicylic acid in it, as well, which helps tame occasional breakouts, but don’t really expect clear-skin wonders from it either. Where this product shines is in its coverage and texture. 

We’re a fan of its consistency - not too thick and cakey, not too thin and runny. It covers discoloration and acne-scarring wonderfully when you follow it up with foundation (we use mineral makeup.) After a long, oily day, we appreciate its staying power, too, and the oil-free, hypoallergenic formula doesn’t add to our ever-present t-zone slickness. Though the package mentions not to use it near your eyes (we imagine because of the salicylic acid), we often use it for under eye coverage without any irritation whatsoever. Overall, for under $10, this is the best concealer your drugstore has to offer. $7.99 at

get the scoop

subscribe to our free weekly email! rss feed follow us on Twitter! Like us on Facebook! Follow us on Pinterest!

like us on facebook!

subscribe + win


Around the Web: