Saturday, August 2, 2014

Neutrogena Rapid Tone Repair Moisturizer {Night} Review

I cannot tell you how long its been since I did a skin care review! I used to like to do them the first year I started blogging, then I started using Proactiv again. As of this year, I started using other skin care products besides Proactiv only because it isnt as easily accessible. I wanted to try something more than just a cleanser. Something I can use every day and see results from it. So, I settled on this. It seemed like something with a million +1 benefits and ingredients which makes me think it must be good. Let's get onto the review!


The State Of My Skin
Lately, my skin has been either really dry or really oily. Not to mention my pores look huge and in some parts of my face I have redness. On top of all of that I am losing elasticity! Yikes! Not that I have wrinkles but my when I wiggle my nose, my skin kind of pulls. It is weird. It's something that is completely new to me. I do get breakouts around my chin here and there but that isn't anything I can't get under control. I find if I wash my makeup off nightly and use Proactiv's Step 3 Repairing Treatment it seems to do the trick.


Noticing all of these imperfections, I was on the hunt for something to solve said problems. When I seen it said you will get visible results in just one week, I figured I might try it considering the box says it would solve almost all of my skin problems and more {with the exception of the extreme oily/dryness}. Take a look for yourself:

{forgive me if you cant read this very well..not sure what happened there- let me no if you want to me type it out for you! I wouldn't mind}



The Presentation
The price for this is a few bucks over $20 but I ended up getting it on sale at Ulta for $18. I thought it was kind of a steep price but when it comes to skin care I don't mind coughing up a few bucks.

The bottle it comes in is actually glass. It better be a nice bottle for that price!   It comes with a pump that I find pumps just enough out or maybe not exactly enough. The point is that your not wasting any or cross contaminating as you would if it was in a jar. You can adjust the nozzle when your not using it to "closed" too. Another nice touch. The actual formula is a white cream that feels serum-y and has a slight floral scent. The scent isn't something that bothers me but I know some people are sensitive to them, especially in a night cream.

Formula
It has some pretty good stuff in this little bottle. 

Retinol SA: a type of retinol that Neutrogena patented, retinol is used for reversing signs of aging by evening out skin tone and texture and fighting the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Retinol is derived from vitamin A. Neutrogena says that Retinol SA is different from Retinol because of its ability to penetrate skin and continue to work 12 hours after application {SA stands for Sustained Action}

Vitamin C: Is the key to the production of collagen {which gives skin firmness}. It is also an antioxidant that slows the rate of free radical damage, which damages collagen and makes skin dry and gives skin fine lines and wrinkles.

Glucose Complex: Used with Retinol SA it accelerates the process of repairing skin. 

Hyaluronic Acid: This is the stuff that is sometimes used in injections and fillers. Babies are born with really high levels of it {hence their beautiful skin} but as we get older, the levels decrease making our skin look dull, sallow, and wrinkly.


A Couple Days In
If I didn't notice anything else, I noticed that my skin just felt a lot softer. My makeup was going on much smoother.

A Week In
Here is a photo of my face a week and a half later. I used it every night.. The day I took this photo, I really noticed a difference on how well my makeup went on. Applying my foundation was a breeze. My face was just so smooth. I would say the "brighter and more radiant" claim is one they live up to. I couldn't put my finger on why my skin looked so good, it just had that something. I can't necessarily tell a difference in the photos but the look of my skin was brighter in person and a lot smoother to the touch. 



I notice that when I wake up in the morning, my face feel like there is a slick to it. Almost oily kind of. But its not that my face is oily its just the product after hours of being on my skin for the night. Once I wash it, it feels nice and clean. I think that has to do with the Retinol SA or Sustained Action.

End Result:
Skip to a month later, The biggest difference I seen in my skin was that first week, so their claim on "proven results in just one week" is true but for me. Now that the product is pretty much gone, I do notice the difference in elasticity! When I wiggle my nose, my skin doesn't seem to tug like it used to. That is also a sign that my skin also isn't so dry either. 

What It Didn't Live Up To:
I do have some redness around my nose/under my eyes/here and there, so I can't say it helped with discoloration/dark spots all that much. So my skin isn't perfect and it isn't a miracle product, like I had hoped in that first week. So it does it's job to an extent but then only goes so far.


Recommendation:
I am actually glad I picked this up, I wasn't sure if it was going to do too much for me since I don't have any wrinkles but it has a ton of benefits. I would say if you are around my age {27} and notice early signs of aging, this would be a great option but it isn't absolutely necessary. If your a little older and noticing bigger signs of aging, you would probably benefit from this even more than I did. This may or may not be a great preventative product, but I will never know considering I can't rewind time and not use it to see if I have less wrinkles a decade or 2 from now. So yeah....


I'll give this a 4 out of 5
I got every benefit out of it {with the exception of getting rid of dark spots} which is great but I wish it could have given me these benefits on a larger scale. Even though it was used until the last dropped and it didn't give me any negative results, it isn't absolutely necessary for someone my age.

In a Nut Shell...

Cons
-Leave's a weird film on my face in the am
-Has a scent {I don't think it's non-comedegenic judging by the fragrance}
-It's around $20
-Didn't help with dark spots/discoloration


Pros
-Doesn't break me out
-Leaves my face looking brighter/more radiant the first week
-Helped with elasticity 
-My face is softer/smoother overall
-My makeup looks a lot better and lays more even on my face 
-Has a ton of beneficial ingredients/vitamins

To hear more about my skin care routine, watch the video below!





I did a lot of research for the video and this review and I thought I would link my resources here. I paired my experience with the facts and it was almost like that "aha" moment. I started to see the correlation between each ingredient and the appearance of my skin. I started thinking "oh, thats why my skin looks brighter" or "ok thats why my skin feels this way" etc. Anyway, check them out if your interested! This review and these articles are a great jumping off point to finding skin care products that are perfect for your skin concerns.


What is your favorite skin care product?

Thanx For Reading!
xoxo
Erica







Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Top 5 Summer Blushes

I get into these moods- I know I have mentioned it here on MBB before- where I am obsessed with outfits, lipsticks, brushes, fruit, home decor, candles, photography, whatever the obsession is for the week- I get into it. Like for reals. Lately I have been obsessed with blushes. Here are my top picks for this summer!


Milani
Corallina
I think the reason for my obsession has been my latest edition in my blush collection. This baby! Oh me gosh- this is just gorgeous! Baked blushes/bronzers are always pretty in the pan, but this is just on another level. When you swatch this it looks a little lighter and brighter of a shade of coral with tiny flex of shimmer. Once applied, it brings a beautiful color to the cheeks along with a highlighting quality because of the shimmer in it- you do not need a highlight when using this blush. This is not one of those blushes that you need to apply twice. The tiniest bit will make your cheeks pop- I gotta be careful with this one, it packs pigment! Not to mention the packaging looks like it should be on the right side of Ulta {are all Ulta's set up with the higher end products on the right side of the store?} but you can find it in CVS for under $10. If you have never tried any Milani baked blushes, I can honestly say you must!

Wet n Wild Color Icon
Heather Silk
This is another banger at the drugstore. One of those blushes that you cannot swirl your brush in over and over. Lightly tap the brush into the blush then tap off the excess- I repeat, tap off the excess! This baby is pigmented and it is only like 2 or 3 bucks! If your not into the shimmer, then this is the perfect blush for you. It is a matte medium pink. It is the darkest color of the bunch. This is an all year round blush for sure. Love this one.

Physician's Formula
Rose
The packaging is adorable. It even comes with a legit brush that I can actually use {I like to use it for contouring my nose because of the shape- it reminds me of a smaller version of the Nars Ita brush} If your new to makeup I think this is a great pick for you. It's not one of those blushes that is so pigmented that it's hard to use but it is surely buildable. Once applied it looks so beautiful on the cheeks. This is a blush that has some shimmer in it {not as much as Corallina}. This blush is magical- It has a highlighting quality without being crazy shimmery. It does have a little bit of shimmer in the pan but on the cheeks it doesn't look shimmery. It just looks brightening. On top of that it brings a nice pink flush to the cheeks. You will see in the swatch photo, it looks almost identical to Dollface. However, if you swatch more of that brighter pink color as opposed to the baby pink (which is how I usually wear it/how its swatched in the photo) you will get a different color. Thinking back I wished I would have swatched it that way. I need to start wearing more of the brighter color because it is so pretty on the back of my hand right now!

ELF Studio Blush
Pink Passion
I am in love with ELF's Studio Blushes. If I could have, I would have put them all in this blog post but because half of them have broken and have the pan showing, I decided it wouldn't be a very cute photo. So here is a review on the line. Anyways, this blush is the brightest of the bunch: a hot bubble gum pink. It is also a matte blush. It is also extremely chalky, which also makes it very pigmented. Tap off the excess, please! With all of these pros and cons, it is a great blush in my collection and it is well loved- I have been using it more than ever this summer. A great pick for any skin tone!

Tarte Amazonian Clay
Dollface
Another matte pink blush. It swatches just like PF's Rose but without the shimmer. It's hard to swatch! It isn't all that pigmented but again, I kinda like that quality in a blush because you can build it up without having to worry about looking like a clown. This one just does something for me. It is that blush that I go to when I don't know what else to wear.



This blog post goes along with The Summer Edit Pt II. I mentiond some of these in that video and also a couple more. The other one's I mention in the video are some of my favorites but they just do not photograph that well because they look used and worn down, to be frank. So check it out!




Thanx for reading!
<3
Erica

Monday, June 16, 2014

Summer Lippies: L'Oreal Color Riche

Walking around Wal Mart a few weeks back, I noticed these were on sale! I also seen these 50% off at CVS too. When something is on sale, I cannot resist. So I bought a couple. These came out last year when the Revlon Lip Butter and Maybelline Baby Lips craze was going on. This was L'Oreal's response to the lip tints. These were the only lip butter esq lip products I had yet to try. So I went for it!

First off, I am obsessed with the packaging. It reminds me of YSL with the gold tube. They are just cute and I feel kinda fancy when I whip it out. I know that is so lame, but whatever. The packaging alone sold me, I'm just being honest! I'm not alone beauty bloggers, am I?


These are comparable to the Revlon's Lip Butter's. They have that same pigment type: they have a sheer wash of color and look slightly glossy on the lips. When you first apply it, it has a slick type of feeling to it. They feel thin and sheer. But they stand out among the Revlon Lip Butter's because of the way they wear down. The glossiness wear's away after awhile but the color is still there. They wear down {especially the brighter color} to what looks like a stain with almost no detection of being drying or patchy which is a great quality! It actually looks like your lips are just that color, no detection of any type of product on the lips, just color, if you can catch my drift.



Fuchsia Flirt
This is a bright fuchsia {name says it all}. The color fuchsia's nature is usually a bright cool toned pink. As you know, cooler (blue) tones in any lip product, make your teeth appear whiter. Always a plus! My favorite out of the pair, is this one. When you first apply it, you get a bright glossy fuchsia color. It isn't as bright as it looks in the tube but I don't think it's supposed to be. Nonetheless, it is still nice and bright on the lips. Like I said before, the brighter color wears down better to what looks like a stain. This one does so but in a way where it doesn't look as bright as it did when you first apply it. Either way, it is an easy lippie to wear the whole day and no matter what it looks like on the lips {bright or duller} it still looks nice.

Cotton Pink
This is a pretty pastel nude pink color once applied. Once it dries down, it loses it's pink tone and turns into more of a nude.  For that reason, it reminds me a lot of Revlon's Lip Butter in Creamsicle, which is a pastel nude. This one does make fine lines and chapped lips more apparent and it also can become a little more drying on the lips than Fuchsia Flirt for whatever reason. I find myself having to re-apply this color sooner than I do with Fuchsia Flirt too. I doesn't hold up as long as the brighter color does.


All and all, I really like these! I think that the brighter/darker colors are better. They seem to just wear down better and look better considering they are more pigmented. Since I liked Fuchsia Flirt so much, I went ahead and picked up a bright red called Cardinal Plume.

If you have yet to check out my Summer Edit: Lips and Tips Video {and Part II: Face and Body} I would definitely do so on my Youtube Channel! These lippies are featured as are a ton of other great summer lipsticks, lip glosses, and nail polishes.



What is your favorite summer lip product?

thank you so much for reading!

till next time
Erica 

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

What's Up in The Video World

Hi! I thought I would update all of you on the things I've been posting to YouTube! Enjoy the video trio of my favorite products (aka hits and misses) healthy food (Nature Box Snacks) , and a Q+A (TMI Tag)





take care
xoxo
Erica

Sunday, May 25, 2014

May Ipsy

I can honestly say that I love Ipsy. The Glam Bag is the best thing that happens to my mail box every month...obviously since I am only getting bills besides Ipsy items. Lately I have been getting a lot of friends sign up and people in the grocery store talk about Ipsy. The cashier at the grocery store noticed I was carrying 5+ Glam Bag's in my purse and brought it up. Everyone seems to love the Glam Bag. A lot of the stuff is a total hit. Some of it is a total miss. This is where I come to talk about it.


I have been subscribed to Ipsy since July 2013. In the 11 months, this may be the very best bag I have gotten. Meaning the actual bag, not the products inside. It's so cute. It looks like something you would get from Clinique or something. I do wish the bags were a little bigger but this bag is made of fabric that reminds me of burlap or something like that so there is some give in it.

I have had the products for a week or so and there are two products that stand out and I have actually been using them. The Balanced Guru Hair Oil is awesome. It's just like any other hair serum {Paul Mitchell Skinny Serum or John Frieda Frizz-Ease} only this serum is totally organic and cruelty free. It is made up of a ton of essential oils: sesame oil, argan oil, jojoba oil, tamanu oil, lemongrass, and eucalyptus. I have been putting a few drops in my palms and rubbing it around my fingers and some of the back of my hands, then I finger comb my hair while it is still damp before I blow dry it. It's been working nicely. I need a serum in my hair at all times. Especially in the hotter months to come. Ohio summers are very hot and humid which isn't good for my frizzy hair.


Another product I have been using this past week is Avene Thermal Spring Water. This is a spring water spray for sensitive skin. This is more or less a luxury product. The recommended uses for this is to use if your skin is irritated or after you take off your makeup, or on a hot summer day to cool your face down. I have just been using it as instead of a toner. I wanna save it for when we go on vacation. Thanks Ipsy because I would never buy something like this lol. It's just for fun and I don't see it as an essential have-to-have-it product every day.

Then we have Hang Ten Classic Sport SPF 50. This is another thing I will be saving for vacation. Love that packaging though. It's like an 80's throwback.


This bag also came with a couple makeup items
Boo-Boo Concealer reminds me a lot of Hard Candy's Glamoflauge Concealer. It's really thick and creamy. I tend to gravitate more to brightening concealers to be used around the eyes and down the nose. The Boo-Boo Cover Up and concealers like it are better for actually concealing a blemish or scar. I do however like mixing them in with a moisturizer in the summer for a simple tint and very light coverage. It's a DIY tinted moisturizer.

Then we have Pacifica Natural Beauty Duo 2. I have only tested this out once and it was only to swatch them on my wrist as you see below. Not the best nor the worst pigment I have seen in an eyeshadow. I feel like I can get some use out of that lighter color. In the pan it looks like a shimmery white but once I swatched it, you can really see that it is more of a warmer champagne color.



What was your favorite Glam Bag product this month?

Have a safe and happy Memorial Day everyone in the US!

Take Care
Erica

Monday, May 19, 2014

Bright Summer Lips: NYX Butter Glosses

When spring/summer rolls around, I am ready for bright color's. The past week in Ohio has been nothing but rain and storms. Le sigh. I went into Ulta with the intention of finding something bright. NYX was having BOGO 1/2 off {as usual} and I knew I already liked their Lip Butters so I decided on these two. They were the brightest of the bunch.

Since I have already reviewed these in two other colors here, I will just give you a quick run down. These Lip Butters are great. They have a doe foot applicator + They have both pigment and gloss. It truly feels like a buttery consistency. It isn't sticky in the slightest. They are comfortable to wear.

Cherry Cheese Cake
This one was the brightest orange of the bunch. I always like orange lipstick for the summer. I wondered why they chose "Cherry" as a part of the name- it is a bit misleading. I think of a cherry as red, don't you? I have decided if it isn't a red orange then it is a yellow orange. To me, this is a true orange. It reminded me a lot of Revlon's Siren {matte} and swatching them next to each other, I noticed it was a dupe as far as the color goes. If your looking for the perfect orange lip, they make an excellent pair.


Peaches and Cream
Another weird name. I had to look for the peachy tone in there and I suppose this would lean slightly coral but to me this is just a perfect bubblegum pink. I have talked about the ELF Essentials Lipstick in Flirtatious plenty of times {may or may not be my all time favorite lipstick} and after swatching them side by side, I realized they are an exact dupe as far as color goes. Another perfect pairing if your looking for a bright pink lip.

Here's the swatches on my wrist. Peaches and Cream is on top and Cherry Cheesecake is below that.


Swatching lipsticks/glosses never give a true color of what it would look like on the lips. These lip glosses look a little but deeper- more bold - on the lips.

I love this time of year. I am so excited for the summer- and bold bright colors!

What are your favorite Bright lip colors?
What about your Favorite NYX Butter Gloss shades?

thanx for reading!
{xx}
Erica

Friday, May 9, 2014

Budget Friendly Makeup Collection and Storage {DIY}

Any sort of collection you may have that involves a bunch of different little piece {makeup collection, craft/scrap book/etc} can be kind of hard to organize. In most cases, collections tend to grow over time and the way you store things will grow over time as well. This is how I used to store my makeup back in 2011/2012. I love those plastic drawer units. You can find those at any Target or Wal-Mart for a decent price.

Now that my collection has grown, the storage unit has also grown. I bought this Ten Piece Drawer Set at Sam's Club for a complete steal for only around $20! It was easy to put together and with a little bit of messing around with everything, everything fits perfectly.


All of the little bins inside of each drawer were either bought at Target ($1), Dollar Tree (3 for $1 and the larger ones $1), and Dollar General ($1).

Tips:
I was looking at the ten drawers in the order I do my makeup. The top drawer is face items {foundation, concealer, primer's, etc} Second drawer is blushes, + bronzers. Third and fourth drawer are eye products, going all the way down the line {with some exception. I should have made the brow products one of the tops drawers but whatever}

Start by figuring out what you have the most of/least of then designate a drawer accordingly. Then start placing your bins in each drawer and you will be surprised to learn that the bins just start fitting in each drawer almost like they were meant to be there- almost like a puzzle piece or something!

ok it's Friday night and I am so ready to to chill out and edit a video and some photos, have a marathon of The Challenge and Chardonnay and maybe order a pizza? I couldn't think of anything more fun to do. Dork. Yes. I am. 

How do you store your makeup?

Until Next Time!
Erica
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