This month, I was a bit hyper about my beauty so I have a lot of things, well 10 things, that I passed judgment on. Alright, let's just jump right into it then...
1 / TATCHA LUMINOUS DEWY SKIN MIST* / $48 for 1.35 oz. or 40 ml.
Ingredients: Water, Glycerin, Squalane (Olive Origin), Cyclopentasiloxane, Propanediol, Triethylhexanoin, Polyglyceryl-2 Diisostearate, PPG-5-ceteth-10 Phosphate, Trideceth-12, Sodium Lauroyl Lactylate, Sorbitan Stearate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Germ Oil, Behenyl Alcohol, || BREAKPOINT // Glyceryl Stearate SE, Fragrance (Natural), Camellia Japonica Seed Oil, Alcohol, Inositol (Rice Extract), Sericin (Silk Extract), Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract, Chondrus Crispus (Red Algae) Extract, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Zizyphus Jujuba Fruit Extract, Panax Ginseng Root Extract, Scutellaria Baicalensis Root Extract, Algae Extract, Royal Jelly Extract, Thymus Serpillum Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate, Phenoxyethanol.
*Acne triggers and potential irritants in red. I will also start including a breakpoint in the ingredients lists now... only ingredients that are ranked in the top 5, 10, or if I'm feeling generous, 15 on the list will be analyzed.
Tatcha sent over their Luminous Dewy Skin Mist last month, and I legitimately have been using this every day. This mist, housed in a sturdy and beautiful glass spray bottle, is pretty heaven sent for a dry skin lady like myself, as it is way more moisturizing and substantial than most of the mists I've tried to date, namely the Jurlique Rosewater Mist and the Avene Thermal Spring Water. I don't know what I was thinking back then, I could have very well just spritzed tap water on my face.
Tatcha's mist does more than just refresh and tone your face because it has a high oil content. It boasts soothing oils like squalane, or squalene, an oil that can be derived from shark liver, plants, or sebum, rice germ oil, and camellia japonica seed oil. Both squalene and camellia japonica seed oil are antioxidants on top of being great emollients aka moisturizers. I can actually feel the oil content when it goes on my skin.
The way I use it is I shake the mist up, and then spritz 2-3 pumps of the magic stuff from about 6-7 inches away, on top of my makeup. I use it once a day, when I feel my makeup has started to dry or crack as the day wears on. The mist emulsifies everything and melds it back together again. I'd read somewhere that this is a favorite of makeup artists, and I think I can see why now. The scent is also very faint, perhaps best described as garden-y.
Haven't I been vocally against using products with alcohol for those with dry skin? Yes, absolutely. I baby my moisture barrier like nothing else. To get comfortable using this product, I asked Tatcha if they could quantify how much alcohol was in the mist, and they basically wrote back to me saying... They put as little in as possible, and that it is only in there because without it, the oil content is so high, the mist would solidify. Heh, how about that. So I put it on my face.
It's pricy, but I wouldn't mind picking up a bottle once a year during the summer to help fend off dryness. Also, this is the spray for people who like purple. Because, purple.
2 / DIY TINTED NAIL POLISH
I've really gotten into sporting sheer nail polish. I saw a trend report on Into The Gloss where different brands had been coming out with nail polish that reads more like a sheer wash of color and I thought I'd try to DIY some of my own. And it works! I mix in 2 drops of a color that's already in my collection with 4-5 drops of either Sally Hansen Big Matte Top Coat $4.79 for a matte finish, or Seche Vite Fast Dry Top Coat $7.99 for a glossy one. This much covers about one hand. This means I "saved" some money and makes up for my moment of weakness during the Memebox sale right? Right? Ahem. Okay so next...
3 / VINEGAR HAIR RINSE
...is another DIY. I'm pretty low involvement with my hair so I loooove me the "no-poo" (or no shampoo) lifestyle. It's where you wash your hair every other day, or every 3 days for some, in favor of using dry shampoo or a powder on your off-days. I love it because you're saving water, and it minimizes your contact with your shampoo which probably has sulfates which aren't my favorite ingredients, and are not exactly good for your face. I found that if I rinse my hair with a half and half vinegar and water mixture, I can extend my no-poo by an extra day. It's great for clearing out buildup from your shampoo and conditioner. Laissez (lazy) the good times roll.. You can use apple cider vinegar if you have it, for a nicer smell, but you can also use the stinky stuff you have in your kitchen.
4 / LEE JI HAM LJH TEA TREE 90 ESSENCE / $30 for 50 ml at US-based Memebox / $24.04 at Korea-based Koreadepart
이지함 티트리90에센스 Ingredients: Melaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree) Extract, Cellulose Gum, Sodium Hyaluronate, Trehalose, Centella Asiatica Extract, Hippophae Rhamnoides Extract, Biosaccharide Gum-1, Tremella Fuciformis (Mushroom) Extract, Buddleja Davidii Extract, Thymus Vulgaris (Thyme) Extract, || BREAKPOINT // Methyl Gluceth-20, Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Seed Extract, Bambusa Textilis Stem Extract, Pinus Palustris Leaf Extract, Caprylyl Glycol, 1,2-Hexanediol, Butylene Glycol.
*Beneficial ingredients presented in bold.
July was like Sample-mageddon. I somehow unwittingly hauled from some of the most generous sellers in the business... Stores like unique4u and w2beauty seriously made it rain essences, emulsions, and ampoules oh my!
I was lucky enough to get a few samples of the Lee Ji Ham Tea Tree 90 Essence, I counted 6 uses. I totally get the hype now. It's pretty much an ideal summer moisturizer. It's got this light, watery gel texture that glides on the skin, smells really nice, and feels refreshing. According to Glow Recipe, a seller which carries this essence for $45, tea tree extract makes up 90% of this formula which makes it ideal for sensitive, irritated, or troubled skin.
I steered clear of this for awhile because I had a misunderstanding about tea tree extract vs. tea tree oil. Both are a bit astringent, but tea tree extract is more gentle, and does not have to be diluted for safe use on the skin. This humectant-heavy formula also boasts hyaluronic acid, seabuckthorn extract, and centella asiatica extract, which is anti-bacterial and reported as useful for helping clear up acne.
5 / A FEW UNCONVENTIONAL EYE LOOKS
I get bored and sometimes do weird things with my makeup. Sometimes I luck into a look I don't mind wearing out of the house, a lot of times I don't... But these two looks I kind of liked. On the left, I'm wearing the Etude House Drawing Brow Pencil in Ash Brown as my "graphic" eyeliner. It's as graphic as you can get with such a muted color. The rust-colored eyeshadow and the stark white inner-corner highlight comes from the Sleek Snapshots palette, and is layered over NYX Milk.
On the right, is a scaredy-cat's rendition of this Harajuku blushed eye look. I used two colors from my Stila Convertible Color "Field of Florals" palette for the eyes, and the lip is the 3 Concept Eyes Creamy Lip Color in #3 Zoom In, in case inquiring minds want to know.
6 / CREMORLAB WHITE BLOOM TRIPLE BRIGHT FLORAL MASK / $6
I bought this mask thinking the ingredients were this list: Water, Butylene glycol, Glycerin, Diglycerin, Trehalose, Hyaluronic acid, Disodium EDTA, Panthenol, Allantoin, Carbomer, Xanthan gum, Triethanolamine, Algae extract, PEG-40 hydrogenated castor oil, Onsen-sui, Squalane, Ascorbic acid, Tocopheryl acetate, Niacinamide, Adenosine, Chamomile extract, Witch hazel extract, Jeju green tea extract, Aloe barbadensis leaf extract, Rose hip extract, Orchid extract, Cenella asiatica extract, Portulca oleracea extract, Phenoxyethanol
But the ingredients on the package were completely different...
|크레모랩 화이트 블룸 트리플 브라이트 플로럴 마스크|
I have such mixed feelings toward this mask. It did a really great job at hydrating my skin and evening it out. It plumped my nasolabial fold or smile lines well. I also thought it did a phenomenal job at brightening my complexion. HOWEVER... if you see the snap on the left, I don't know how easy it is to tell, but the fit of the mask is not good. See all of the exposed skin around my eyes? It would have been nice to get some of this awesome runny, liquidy essence into my sunken undereye area. This is where the mask failed for me. If the mask cost $1-2 like My Beauty Diary or My Scheming, all would be forgiven. But this mask sets you back $6. So it gets a big "meh" from me, despite its results. If you want to try the essence out, you can pick up a pack and soak some cotton pads or mask tablets ~$3 in the essence and make your own mask.
7 / CAOLION BLACKHEAD STEAM PORE PACK PREMIUM / $23 for 50 g. or $38 for 100 g.
It is also available at Urban Outfitters and Peach and Lily for the same price.
Ingredients: Glycerin, Kaolin, Cetearyl Alcohol, Polysorbate 60, Stearic Acid, Charcoal Powder, Dimethicone, Polyethylene, Avena Sativa (Oat) Kernel Flour, Betaine, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Sorbitan Stearate, Phenoxyethanol, Trimethylpentanediol/Adipic Acid Copolymer, // BREAKPOINT? // Chlorphenesin, Carbomer Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Ginkgo Biloba Leaf Extract, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Portulaca Oleracea Extract, Prunus Mume Fruit Extract, Rhus Semialata Gall Extract, Triethanolamine Vanillyl Butyl Ether, Disodium EDTA
I also received a deluxe sample of this blackhead steam pore pack. I've been on the hunt for products that will make my sebaceous filaments (SF's) just pour out of my pores... I've tried everything from clay to beta hydroxy acid (BHA) products, to actually physically removing them with a cuticle pusher... in one of the most foolhardy endeavors I've ever pursued.
See me muse about it on Twitter below...
also, just came up with a new method for getting grits if you're the type of person who doesn't get grits— nonsonoquitter (@unsightlygimp) July 17, 2015
TL;DRi call it #poreplaning. checking with my derm to see if it's safe, before greenlighting it for the blog!— nonsonoquitter (@unsightlygimp) July 17, 2015
My dermatologist, who is now used to my quacky questions, did not approve haha. Anyways, so I'm a bit obsessed with being rid of SF's, so I was VERY happy to receive this product. I'd read reviews where people had sworn by this mask to be rid of them. This is a charcoal steaming mask that is supposed to exfoliate and cleanse impurities, namely blackheads and whiteheads.
I've used it 4 times, and this is a classic case of Your Mileage May Vary (YMMV): basically what works for one person, may not work for another. I used a thin layer each time, on my nose, cheeks and forehead, massaged it into the skin, and let it sit for about 10 minutes. The pack heated up like it was actually doing something, but alas, I did not get any grits and my pores stayed plugged. My hypothesis is that perhaps this works better for people who have "hard plugs". Time for some oversharing - mine seem to be on the softer side of the spectrum.
8 / BOTANIC FARM POLAR ENERGY HYDROGEL MASK PACK (SALMON EGG) / $1 on sale, usually $5. Currently sold out.
Another Ingredients Conundrum...
보타닉 팜 하이드로겔 연어알 마스크 Ingredients: Butylene Glycol, Niacinamide, Adenosine, Cellulose Gum, Schisandra Chinensis Extract, Aloe Vera Leaf Extract, Pine Mushroom Extract, Caprylyl Glycol, Fragrance, Allantoin, Astaxanthin, Salmon Egg Extract (1,000ppm).
Hng. I spotted this ingredients list and basically reverse slam-dunked this into my cart during the Memebox sale last week. It fulfills my mantra.. meaning it's got everything I want, and nothing I don't want, including Astaxanthin! an antioxidant that's more potent than even Niacinamide and Vitamin C, and my new favorite ingredient. I recently tried some really terribly made sheet masks that had Astaxanthin in them, and the results were just mmph, so good.
Oh Memebox, you are redeemed. Excuse my oversight - the Astaxanthin is IN the salmon eggs! As kindly pointed out by Ms. Fifty Shades of Snail.
My experience with this mask was a touch underwhelming. This particular Botanic Farm mask and I weren't meant to be. I like hydrogels for the most part, but this one was very plasticky and didn't adhere as well to my face, making these glamour shots below hard to get. The essence was also on the thicker and stickier side. While it did absorb somewhat into my skin for a visually plumped effect, I couldn't get over the sticky residue that stuck around. I expected a lot from this mask, just by looking at the ingredients list, but it ended up being only okay. Who knows, maybe my expectations were just impossible to live up to, but that disconnect between expectations and the reality of this mask, made me tres disappointed.
Just a note, in case you already have a few of these on the way, this mask comes sandwiched between two mask backings. The mask should look like the photo on the right.
9 / TOO COOL FOR SCHOOL MILK TINT IN ORANGE / $5.61 for 50 ml.
If you've ever tried a milky tint before, you know that they feel like rubbing a watery lotion or essence on your lips. They're super moisturizing and comfortable on the lips. This one by Too Cool For School is the same way. I love the way this feels on, and it makes your lips look plush and full. It's kind of like a gloss, without any of the stickiness. It also smells delicious like a bottle of Japanese yogurt, if you're familiar.
So what's the catch? My main gripes are that a) that the product isn't that pigmented - one layer of this product won't stain your lips the way you want it to. And b) your lips end up looking crusty after a few hours. Not attractive. The good thing is that this tint layers well compared to tints I've tried in the past, like the Etude House Color Pops.
The lip swatch on the right is about 3 layers of the product. It's a shame because the color is a lovely grapefruit, that I'd love to be able to get full-on right away. But to get the color you have to swatch and wait, swatch and wait... swatch and wait.
|투쿨포스쿨 밀크 틴트|
It's not bad, it's just not my style...
I'll be repurposing this into a subtle but glowy cheek tint.
10 / MORE SAMPLES THAT NEITHER OVERWHELMED NOR UNDERWHELMED ME. CONSIDER ME WHELMED
I also had the chance to try the Etude House Moistfull Collagen Cream, the Mizon Intensive Skin Barrier Serum Deep Moisture Lifting Care, the Mizon Water Volume Ex Cream Hydra Tox Water Full Moisture Skin, and The Saem Urban Eco Harakeke Firming Seed Cream. I found that they were all great light summertime hydrators, but none of them stood out to me. No repurchase for me.
What were your hits and misses this month?
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links and press samples. Press samples are marked with an asterisk; samples were kindly sent with no obligation to review. If you're curious about my policy on press samples, affiliate links, and sponsors, see my disclaimer and policies.