I watch a lot of YouTube. Maybe too much? That’s probably why I find myself agreeing with “Makeup Struggles” Gurus all seem to be doing the same thing, she has some great suggestion on how it could be different.
As you may have guessed I have been pretty busy doing long term product testing during my hiatus of 3 months. This eye cream is one of them and has been tested for a period of two months. Magic Eye Rescue retails at 55 Euros / 60 USD for 15ml, this is quite pricey for the small amount, but it comes in an oversize pot that gives the impression that you get more than you do.
If you read the blurb on her website you will expect nothing short of a miracle in using this cream, but that applies to most eye cream brands, so my expectations were moderate.
What makes it special? It has slow release retinol, which should absorb into the delicate skin around the eyes without irritation. It also contains a sugar complex. that boosts hydration.
Performance: Application is pleasant, a medium weight gel consistency with a pleasant fragrance, it spreads evenly and absorbs very quickly and feel very pleasant on the skin. I perceived instant improvements when I first started using it the area under the eyes appeared immediately plumped and wrinkles diminished. I no longer notice this as the results are maintained through consistent use.
Results over time: The wrinkles under my eyes have visibly diminished, prior to use they would be greatly exaggerated by makeup application, now they are so diminished that they are hardly noticeable. I also no longer need to use extra hydrating primers under the eyes, my normal primer works just fine.
Would I repurchase? Definitely.
It was almost a year ago that Sisley’s Double Tenseur Primer started making a splash in the Beauty Community. At that price it was not something I was eager to try out, but given that I have slowly but surely stocked up on all makeup necessities, there has come a stage to look into things that might just not be worth it and retailing at 192 USD for 1 oz, this could be amongst them.
When a product is so expensive, a first-impressions isn’t really what it’s about, I tested Double Tenseur over a period of 3 months.
Performance: You don’t need a lot of product and it does a great job of smoothing out the skin. Prior to using it, I used Guerlain L’Or on most of my face and Benefit’s Porefessional on large pores. Using this Sisley primer I could use this all over the face, as it dealt with large pores really well. It did not feel heavy on the face and had a pleasant botanical smell. Of all the primers I have used; it delivered best on keeping makeup on the longest, even when it is blazing hot and you are having a “glowy” day. It does not play well though with strong setting sprays over longer periods. It sets on the skin creating (as advertised) a mesh whilst also sinking into the skin. On very hot days (ie you sweat under your makeup) having a strong setting spray on top of foundation such as Urban Decay’s All Nighter or Chill, will lead the makeup to breakup if you touch your face and wipe off in layers. This sounds very alarming, but it isn’t. If I left out setting spray, the primer kept everything on wonderfully.
Why is it so expensive? Sisley is expensive anyway, but this primer is skincare. It claims to help firm and lift the skin over time using botanical extracts. I have experienced improvements in my skin since starting to use this. The botanicals and their (alleged) virtues are listed like this on the Sisley website: “Rhatany extract: astringent and toning, contributes to an immediate lifting effect. Lemon extract : astringent and toning. Oat seed extract: “3D lifter” active ingredient. Tiger Nut extract : restores the skin’s elasticity. Cotton extract: regenerating and replenishing. Red Vine extract: anti-free radicals. Watercress extract: tones and revitalizes. Biosaccharide solution : instant and long-term moisturizing properties. Plant-origin glycerin : moisturizes and softens.
Would I repurchase? Yes, although it is very expensive, I use very little product, it does what it says in the advertising and does this with great ingredients which benefit my skin. I am at the age, where I need the products that go onto my skin to all be anti-aging and I appreciate products that work, as as we age I don’t want to waste time on those that don’t.
Totally worth the hype.
I found the Mario Badescu Anti-Aging Regimen Kit on BeautyBay for 31,50 Euros and was intrigued. I had never tried any Mario Badescu products and this seemed like a good opportunity especially as it came with a free makeup bag with some travel size body care samples. This has now sold out, but US customer can find the set at Ulta.
The brand was founded in 1967 by Mario Badescu; who is a Romanian immigrant. He sought to bring his natural recipes and approach to New York city. The brand uses known actives and has never tested on animals.
First Impressions: For Anti Aging the set struck me as a strange combination of items. It comprises a Glycolic Foaming Cleanser, Glycolic Acid Toner, Collagen Moisturizer with SPF 15, Super Collagen Mask and very small pot of Glycolic Eye Cream. Considering that the range also has products with ceramides, peptides, hyaluronic acid and Vitamin C the contents of the set represent only quite limited anti-aging actives.
Glycolic Foaming Cleanser; this has a light citrus scent, it is non stinging and foams slightly. Using it my skin did not feel parched afterwards a very enjoyable experience. It is only supposed to be used twice per week, which is good, because there’s only 2 ounces in the bottle.
Glycolic Acid Toner; this was also pleasant to use, again it doesn’t sting on the skin and leaves it feeling smooth and in a good place to receive further skin care. The scent is unusually a little like baby powder. It is meant to be used each time you wash.
Collagen Moisturizer with SPF 15, is a very fluid lotion with very visible sunscreen in it. I would expect the sunscreen to be stronger given the level of whiteness the lotion has. It is very comfortable and absorbs quickly and provides more moisture than it’s texture would imply.
Super Collagen Mask: This I did not like. The face mask is a paste that you apply and let sit on the skin for around 15 minutes until it is totally dried out. It contains kaolin making this a clay mask along with the collagen. It dried hard as a rock and was difficult to remove. I appreciate that it had collagen on it, but I don’t like Kaolin sucking moisture out of my skin and this does not strike me as effective anti aging.
Glycolic Eye Cream: I have to admit I have shirked my responsibility on this test and have only used this once. The reason is the idea of putting glycolic acid on the skin on my eye area was a bit disconcerting. In using it, my eyes watered from the acid in the surrounding area. It stung slightly when putting on but did not really irritate the skin. The reviews on this eye cream are really good, so maybe I should overcome my fears and give this a proper chance!
All in all, I don’t see this set as optimal for mature skin, at my age an effective anti aging regime would need some more actives than this, but it was great to test the products. I think skins in their twenties and early thirties can really benefit from these products.
I have often written how much I appreciate the cost efficiency of The Ordinary products and I really enjoy the flexibility of my skincare regime incorporating multiple serums with multiple active ingredients, but not everyone has the time or the interest to find out how to do it. In December last year I started thinking and wondering whether there might be a brand that combines known actives in a no nonsense, affordable way that makes sense for people. I did a lot of research and stumbled upon the Mad Hippie brand. A brand that is not available in retail in the country I live in.
Mad Hippie’s founders are surfers, who were looking for good quality skincare to save and restore their weather beaten skin. Their products contain multiple natural actives that harmonize with each other. They do without anything unnecessary avoiding fragrance and harmful preservatives such as parabens. They use no animal testing and all products are vegan.
Getting hold of the products involved an order from i-herb for me followed by a one hour trip to customs to pay import duties. I was not able to buy everything I wanted, but despite the hoops I had to jump through to get them I do not regret the effort, it was all worth it.
Here are my thoughts on the products I have tested so far:
Vitamin C Serum: This product contains way more than just Vitamin C. Also Vitamin E, Ferulic Acid, Hyaluronic Acid, Konjac Root, Grapefruit, Chamomile and Clary Sage. The product does not sting when applied and absorbs quickly. A very pleasant serum. The only criticism I have is that it comes in a dark glass bottle with a dropper. You need to use it up quickly or it will turn bad in 3 months. An airtight, lighttight packaging would be better, but you can decant half of it and keep it in the fridge to extend it’s life, apart from that it’s a really pleasant good serum at a fair price of around 30 dollars.
Exfoliating Serum: I love this serum, it has glycolic and lactic acid in it, as well as Matrixyl (peptide complex), apple stem cells, gigawhite (botanical blend that is skin brightening), Sodium Hyaluronate (related to Hyaluronic Acid)´, penetrates skin deeper), and the anti-oxidants white tea, goji berry and ceramides to protect the moisture barrier. This is the best exfoliating serum I have found to date.
Face Cream: The ingredients of this face cream are amazing, but it was not hydrating enough for my dry skin, normal skin though would love it! I still use it, but top it with a more oily product on top. From the actives, I can’t think of a better combination. It contains Matrixyl & other peptides, Coenzyme Q10 (affects cell activity), Antioxidants: resveratrol, acai berry, pomegranate & green tea, niacinamide (evens skin tone and affects size of pores and sebum), aloe vera and coconut & argan oil.
Eye Cream: The eye cream is amazing. This is the opposite of those oily creams that sit around your eyes with you wondering what the heck they are actually doing. It absorbs immediately and it may be my imagination, but I actually think I can feel it doing good things. This one is suitable for everyone. The actives are matrixyl & other peptides, chamomile, anti-oxidants: pomegranate and white tea, Vitamins C, B3 and E, Wheat Protein and Argan Oil. Best eye cream ever for only 25 dollars.
I have heard great things about their Antioxidant Face Oil, but unfortunately could not get my hands on it.
I have heard that in the States Mad Hippie can be picked up at wholefood stores. I envy you!
I hope to test more Mad Hippie products and I totally support the brand. Proven actives, fairly priced, well combined from an ethical company. I don’t think we can ask for much more.
I got the full size of this product “Skin Chemists London’s Aqua Repair Facial Serum” in a Look Fantastic box, it retails at 39 GBP for 30ml/1 ounce. It’s called a serum, but is more like a somewhat fluid gel.
Whilst this is not a harmful product, it is a bit b***s***, and this is why I think you should save your money.
The main actives advertised on the packaging are Rose Water and Aloe Vera and that there are no Parabens.
As you will be aware: INCI rules mean that ingredients must be stated with the ingredient with the largest proportion first, so the lower down an ingredient is named, the less of it is in it.
The first two ingredients are Water and Carbomer. Carbomer is a filler that expands when wet. So the main content of this product is filler. Then good news: the next one is Rose Water. At 7th place we have Allantoin (smoothing, helps acne scars). At 10th place we have perfume (middle of ingredients list), and boy can we smell it, Finally at 16th place we have powdered Aloe. Interesting that they don’t list the ingredients on their website.
Instead of preserving with Parabens, they preserve with Coumarin. Coumarin can cause liver damage in individuals sensitive to it ,even at low levels. Like Parabens, it has also be shown to induce cancer in rats and mice. So, I’m not exactly sure why Coumarin is cooler than Parabens ^^
This is pretty much the cheapest set of ingredients I have seen in a long time in skincare, we might do better buying a 3 GBP Rose Water from Amazon and mixing it with Olive Oil. Save your money.
Last week I had the worst cold of my life, I think most would classify it as full blown flu. A few days before I got the cold from hell I started using Retinol 1% by the Ordinary. I have been using Retinol products since August last year, I have always striven to use the “best” and whilst I have seen some improvements, they have never been particularly noticeable until last week. So I used the Ordinary’s product two nights in a row, by the third morning and all of a sudden my skin started peeling and not in a dry patch type way, but in a baby snake sheds its skin kind of way. I was speechless, there was no dryness, no irritation, it was just lovely fresh skin wanting to get to the surface asap. So that was great and impressive! I could peel the skin off nearly my entire face within 2 days simply by lifting the edges (yeah I know that sounds gross and it was gross, but hey this is an anti-aging blog!). So this product really works!!!
Unfortunately I was then struck by the cold from hell, (yeah more grossness ahead). That cold pretty much involved a waterfall of snot coming from my nose. My nose was rubbed so raw by it, it was literally bleeding. Every product I put on to help stung and none really made a difference. I was pretty miserable, face still peeling, incredibly ill and a bleeding nose area. I few weeks previous I did a really naughty Charlotte Tilbury (yeah guilty, I did not tell you about that), as result they gave me a rather large sample of Charlotte’s Magic Cream, a product I had flat out refused to buy in store, believing it be over-hyped and unnecessary due to my multiple step skincare that revolves around individual actives. Well seeing as nothing had worked I thought, hell, why not try this? Charlotte’s Magic Cream IS MAGIC. Around my raw nose area it genuinely cooled and the entire area was healed within 2 days. The cream feel fabulous overall on the skin providing great fast absorbing moisture and creating a comfortable barrier against moisture loss. I am converted. I looked up the ingredients on her website and they really are great. I generally use about 4 to 5 serums topped with a moisturizer and then primer etc.. Using this cream I use only two serums, a hyaluronic acid complex and a vitamin c serum, then follow with the cream, it’s all I need. I will be purchasing the full size.
The third miracle item I need to tell you about is the Dr Jart+ Dermask Water Jet Vital Hydra Solution™ sheet mask. My cold hit me whilst my face was still peeling. This mask did a fabulous job of cooling my skin and providing hydration helping keep my skin in as good condition as possible during the retinol peeling and the fever caused by my illness.
Now that I am better, I have received compliments EVERY day for my skin! I am really glad I have found these products and hope they can help you too.
Thank you so much for following me, despite my low activity levels the last weeks!
In recent days I have not been able to post, battling being ill whilst being full required at work means that sometimes life gets in the way of blogging and also in the way of keeping in touch.
Thank you so much for bearing with me, I really appreciate it and thanks for checking in and reading my posts, I hope they have been helpful.
Review of Shiseido’s Brand New Foundation – Tom Ford Lipstick – Charlotte Tilbury Full Look – Mad Hippie Brand Review – Viseart- Natasha Denona – more Highend Hits and Misses.
Hits: Having almost given up on lipsticks from the Drugstore I have an unexpected hit to report for mature lips. L’Oreal has a beautiful sheer nude lipstick by Jennifer Lopez in their Color Riche range called JLO’s Nude. It’s beautiful with a bit of shimmer, flattering to anyone with lines on their lips. As a sheer color it doesn’t have very good lasting power, but is a joy to wear. The scent is slightly floral but not too overpowering. It’s available at Ulta for only 5,39 USD (it is currently on sale woo hoo)
Sticking with L’Oreal, in my post last Monday I wrote of the advantages of having a great flattering color for a quick one shade eye look. L’Oreal’s Color Riche L’Ombre Pure in the shade “Lumiere” is perfect for that. Unfortunately these only seem to be available in Europe, but in the UK they are in Boots & Superdrug and in Germany at any L’Oreal display.
I have found quite a few hits for damaged hair recently. In principle apart from the follicle hair is dead, so all you are really looking for is products that help this look better, therefore haircare products tend to be quite simple in their formulation and there are rarely high-end products that are outstandingly better than those in the drugstore. Here’s a few of my good finds:
Conditioners: Aussie 3 Minute Miracle Reconstructor, smells delicious and comes in superb packaging where the bottle stands on its head allowing you to easily get all of the product out. This is a really nice conditioner, that improves combability.
However even better is: Hask Argan Oil Repairing Conditioner, it also smells pleasant and can be bought in individual use sachets (which give me 2 uses). This product is free of sulphates and parabens and gives even better combability than the Aussie.
You know when you are good and go to the hairdressers every month getting those split ends removed, but then in the weeks after at home you blow dry your hair and damaged hair is sticking up all over the place? Well if you do, Ogx’s Coconut Water weightless Hydration Oil is your new best friend. I either spray this onto my damp hair and style or if I have used other products for that I spray a little to my brush once I am done with styling and brush through and those terrible flyaway damaged hairs behave themselves, plus it makes my hair super glossy.This product has a strong coconut aroma.
And finally on the hits: I am so sorry to write about this, because I think that if you live outside of Germany or Asutria you will not be able to get it. I have long been looking for the perfect hand cream, on that absorbs without icky residue, conditions hands and smells nice. Believe it or not, I have been through countless hand creams and none of them fulfilled these criteria until now. For under 2 Euros, I found hand care heaven in the drugstore brand “treaclemoon”. The product is in small portable 75ml bottles and comes in satsuma, coconut, mallow, raspberry and cherry scents. I now own them all. Each has a slightly different formula depending on how damaged your skin is, but all of them absorb amazingly, all are non-sticky leaving no residue. This brand deserves to be a global hit! If you have relatives in Germany get them to pick some up for you, they can be found in DM.
Finally I have only 2 misses to report: Influenced by YouTube and Blogs I went off and bought two Essence mascara’s. Both were of the Lash Princess range, one called “false lash effect mascara”, the other called “volume mascara”. Both looked very nice at application, better than I would expect for mascara’s that only cost around 3 Euro’s. But with one of them (can’t remember which) my eye starting itching almost immediately and this continued throughout the day, with the other the mascara flaked off terribly by lunch time.Due to my sensitive eyes, I will be avoiding Essence mascara’s going forward along with maybelline.
That’s all folks!