Friday, July 19, 2013

RUSK Deepshine Color Care Invisible Dry Shampoo

I absolutely love using dry shampoo. It's perfect for those in between shower touch ups, and it's so quick and easy. I was recently given Rusk's Deepshine Color Care Invisible Dry Shampoo to try out, and I LOVED it!

When you have colored hair (like me!!), in order to preserve the color you generally try to wash it less, but when your hair gets greasy just hours after a shower (also me...), you can't be constantly washing it; this is where dry shampoo is the answer.

I have ashy blonde hair which makes it an ok type color for using baby powder as a grease absorber, but darker hair colors may have trouble getting the grey out of their hair. Also, when you use baby powder, your mop smells like baby powder... (duh), but not with Rusk's dry shampoo! The Deepshine Color Care invisible dry shampoo is not only invisible (wooh) it has a really pleasant scent that smells like a freshly shampooed head o' hair.

Directions are super easy. Just shake the bottle, spray it into your hair,
wait a minute and then comb through and style as normal.

the nozzle

Good for:

  • gals whose hair gets greasy quickly (ie. me)
  • gals with colored hair (also me)
  • lazy people (also me)
This dry shampoo retails for $19, a little on the pricey side for me, but since it's not an everyday sorta product, I'll definitely splurge a little.

The complimentary products mentioned in this review were provided to me by People StyleWatch Style Hunters. All opinions are mine.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Sally Hansen Salon Insta-Gel Strips Starter Kit (People StyleWatch Style Hunters)

Last week, I was sent the Sally Hansen Gel Nail Strips Starter Kit by People StyleWatch Style Hunters.
The kit itself comes with all you need to create a long lasting gel manicure, such as a mini LED Lamp with Auto-Timer, Gel Top Coat, 16 Gel Polish Strips, 2 Nail Cleanser Pads, Cuticle Stick, File & Buffer. I was sent the color, "Red My Lips" but the starter kit also comes in "Shell we Dance" (a pale pink) and "Wine Not" (a slightly sparkly berry colour).

A couple of months ago, I purchased an at-home gel kit, so I was ready to compare this starter kit (which was much more affordable at only $29) to the kit I used by Red Carpet Manicure.

Everything that comes in the kit
The instructions are simple:

  1. Push back cuticles with orange stick and file nails with dark pink side of file.
  2. Open up gel nail strips container, and find strips that fit for each nail; set aside.
  3. Cleanse nails with cleaner pads.
  4. Peel off front of gel strips, peel back off gel strips. Affix to nail, using warm hands and cuticle stick to properly adhere strip to nail.
  5. Use light pink side of file to file the excess strip off the tip of nail.
  6. Apply a thin(!!) coat of gel top coat.
  7. Cure under LED lamp, and wipe sticky residue off with cleaner pads.
Overall, I had several issues with the kit! Although the instructions themselves were easy to follow, the biggest issue was with the application of the gel nail strips. Not a single strip fit any of my nails (most were too wide), and each of them had to be cut down and shaped to size. In no way is this time efficient (something this nail kit is supposed to be!!). I've used regular nail strips before, even Sally Hansen's Salon Effects, which I LOVE, and never had this problem until now.

You can see the jagged edges in this picture (pre-cure)
Thumb after cure - sides are still jagged
The strips themselves didn't adhere to my nails properly, either, and most had significant lifting even before curing with top coat. The mini LED light is simple to use (and safer than a UV light), although being able to cure only one nail at a time is a bit time-consuming. The top coat didn't give my nails that shine than my other gel topcoats have either, but it did the job.

finished nails - not too much shine, lifting is apparent
Once the nails were cured and cleansed, the lifting became even more apparent close-up. The kit promises up to two weeks of mirror shine and no chipping, but my nails peeled off within 24 hours when I gave my dog a bath; my regular gel nails last anywhere from two weeks to four weeks.

The individual products in the kit are useful and make for an affordable gel manicure, but the strips themselves are the ones with issues. Problems with sizing, jagged tips, and lifting make this particular kit a bit of a flop. Sally Hansen also sells a gel polish kit which comes in 16 colours (which would be applied like a regular nail polish, but cured under the UV light). I probably won't be buying the gel nail strips in the future, but I may give the Sally Hansen gel polish a try!

The complimentary products mentioned in this review were provided to me by People StyleWatch Style Hunters. All opinions are mine.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Christian Dior - Diorshow Mascara Review

Last week, I was sent a tube of Christian Dior's Diorshow Mascara to try out, courtesy of People StyleWatch Style Hunters! Diorshow is described as a backstage cult-favorite that was originally created for models on the catwalk.

This legendary brush came after a true moment of inspiration. Dior makeup artists would use plush toothbrushes to coat models lashes backstage to create show-stopping, catwalk lashes and volume when a regular mascara wand just wouldn't do. It's also available in a waterproof formula.
I love the packaging!
The bottle and packaging are both simple, yet eye catching and quite luxe. Now, one of the first things you notice when you open the mascara is that it does have a perfumed scent, which although is light, it might irritate some people. (note, its only perfumed in the mascara bottle, once it's on your lashes, the smell dissipates).

The brush on this mascara is literally amazing! It's pretty huge, holds a good amount of product on it, and does a great job sufficiently coating every lash. It's also substantially bigger/rounder than most mascara wands. Here's a closeup!

Here's a before of my lashes:
No mascara - click the photos to make them bigger!
And an after:
just one coat!
After one coat, not only did my lashes have much more volume, but they actually looked quite a bit longer as well! One coat is enough for a day-time look, but the mascara is really buildable. After a few more coats, this is what it looked like:

Which is a HUGE difference from my bare lashes! I kept looking at my lashes in a mirror and they were so thick and long, it looked as if I had falsies on. Now, this look is more suitable for night time events, but even with all that mascara on, my lashes remained soft and fluffy. There was also no smudging throughout the entire day (yes!), and none of those little flakes you get from drying mascaras. The formula combined with the huge brush (which was key in creating those long, thick lashes) was really great. 

Even though the mascara stayed on all day without budging, it was simple enough to remove with my usual makeup remover, Vichy's Pureté Thermale.

My only gripe about the mascara is the price. It's sold at Sephora for $25 which is more than I usually spend on mascara, but to be honest, I'll probably wind up buying this in the future as I've never used a mascara that gave me results like these! is also offering complimentary ground shipping from now until December 31, 2012 with code DIORPSW2012.

The complimentary products mentioned in this review were provided to me by People StyleWatch Style Hunters. All opinions are mine.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Sally Hansen Magnetic Nail Color

Included in my Influenster Summer VoxBox was Sally Hansen Magnetic Nail Color in Ionic Indigo.

I've wanted to try magnetic nail polishes for a while, but most brands cost upwards of $15 and I wasn't willing to spend that much (what if I didn't like it!?). The good thing about Sally Hansen Magnetic Nail Color is that it costs only $9.99 and there's often coupons for Sally Hansen products in local stores (MUCH more affordable!).

Now, onto the actual nail polish! The bottle and color look like this.

In order to get the cool wavy effects, a magnet is included on the nail polish. My hovering the magnet over the freshly painted nail for a few seconds, it moves the particles in the nail polish to create cool designs.

The magnetic cap is removable. (It took me a while to figure this out. At first I just flipped the entire brush/cap over when 'magnetizing' my nails, but soon realized that with a firm pull the magnetic cap separates off the nail polish cap). Here's a photo of the 'lip' on the magnetic cap. The 'lip' prevents the magnet from touching your nail when 'magnetizing' the polish.

And here's a picture of what the nail polish looks like when the magnetic cap is removed. It's much easier to use this way!

Now, there's a few instructions to ensure that your magnetic mani goes right!

  • Remove nail polish from nails. Even if your nails are already clean, remove the oils on your nails by using nail polish (the oils on your nails can prevent the polish from sticking properly and can cause a shorter life span of your mani!).
  • Push your cuticles and shape your nails as you like. You can also apply a base coat.
  • Apply one thin/normal coat of the magnetic nail polish. Let it dry (this didn't take longer than 5 minutes for me). 

my nails with one coat 
  • First make sure your magnetic cap is nearby/handy. Then, apply a THICK coat of polish to your nail (only do one nail at a time!!!)
  • Take the magnetic cap and making sure that the 'lip' part is towards your cuticle, place it over your nail for about 10 seconds. Be careful to not let the magnetic cap touch your nail polish!
  • Lift the cap and admire your mani! You can also apply a top coat to your polish to help seal and protect it. Then clean up the edges as necessary.

my nails after the first time using Sally Hansen Magnetic Color!
 Overall, I really liked the product and I got so many compliments on my nails! They almost remind me of how the light shines when you're underwater in a pool! Application in the beginning was easy, but as I did more of my nails, it became more simple and I stopped bumping the lip into my mani!

The complimentary products mentioned in this review were provided to me by Influenster for testing purposes. All opinions are mine.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Essie Instant Dry Oil Review

I recently received Essie's Instant Dry Oil. It's marketed as a 'perfect polish protector' that 'helps prevent smudges and dents'. It retails for $8, about the same as a bottle of Essie nail polish. 

It comes in a bottle the same size and shape as regular Essie polishes, but the brush is a bit more sturdy and stiff (I think it's a tiny bit longer as well). Application is easy, as the product is pretty watery/smooth, and goes over your nail quickly. It doesn't really dry up (derp. it's an oil), so it's hard to tell when your nails are dry. It stayed on my nails until I brushed them against my clothing or something.

Essie's 'Brooch the Subject' with Sally Hansen Salon Effects in 'Laced Up'

It did make my nail polish pretty smooth, even though Essie polishes generally dry quickly/smoothly. But it did seem to take off some of the shine that normal Essie polishes have. I didn't use a top coat either. The manicure lasted exactly one week before there was significant chipping at the tips, but it seemed to last a bit longer than usual (my usual mani lasts around 5 days before a significant chip). I have healthy nails/nailbeds/cuticles, so I didn't notice an improvement in them. Maybe if you often use acrylics or have weaker nails you would.

The thing is, this stuff if just perfumed mineral oil!!! LOOK!!

 ..and mineral oil is cheap! The generic Walgreens kind retails for $5.49 for 16oz, this bottle is only .5 fl oz, and retails for $8.... come on. (If you were to buy 16 oz of Essie Instant Dry *cough*Mineral*cough* oil, you'd spend $256 instead of $5.49 at Walgreens, lolol)

  • dried my nails quickly
  • (may) have improved the overall length of my manicure
  • manicure wasn't as shiny as usual
  • THE PRICE!!!
Would I purchase it again? NO WAY. At least not this fancy schmancy Essie branded mineral oil. I could just go to Walgreens, and get it for like waaaay cheaper. or 
*TIP* Dipping your freshly painted nails into a tub of really cold water for about 30 seconds dries the nail polish super quickly and is super affordable.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Sally Hansen Salon Effects

Sally Hansen Salon Effects were also included in my Influenster Spring Beauty VoxBox.

This design is called, 'Laced Up'

The nail strips come in a little kit, complete with a nail file, instructions and a cuticle stick.

Here's a close up of my design. It's really cute, lacy, and feminine!

Ok, I LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE these! I don't even know where to start! First the design was absolutely adorable, and if you don't like it, then there's 40 different styles (both solids and patterns).

Application was fairly easy, first you took the included cuticle stick and pushed back your cuticles, then you took the nail file and shaped the tips of your nails and buffed the top of the nail to smooth it.

*TIP* After doing the above steps, make sure to use nail polish remover on your nails, even if they look clean. The oils on your nails can prevent the strips from sticking to them, or cut your manicure length short.

Once you open the package of nail strips, find the strip that matches closest to your nail, peel the clear adhesive from the top (printed side) of the strip, snap the bottom part off (the blue part in the strip picture, it's easy to do), and peel the bottom adhesive off.

Position and center it on your nail, and then push down, using the smooth, flat part of the cuticle stick to take out any bubbles (I didn't get any bubbles) and to affix it to the nail.

*TIP* This part is easy, but super important! Take care to press down on the entire nail with the cuticle stick to ensure the strip stays! If it's not attached all the way now, it's more susceptible to peeling.

Once it's firmly attached, fold it down over your tip, and use the nail file to file away the excess making sure to only use the nail file in one direction to prevent ripping or tearing. (It comes off pretty easy).

If there's enough of the strip left over, you can use it for another nail!

You can also use the strips on all of your nails, or only as an accent nail, like I did. (I was able to use one strip to cover two nails). Covering them with a clear topcoat is optional, but not necessary.

my nails! I used Essie's Brooch the Subject as the polish. It matched perfectly with Laced Up!
The nail strips claim to last 10 days, but mine lasted 8 before the first strip (on my left hand) started lifting, got caught in my hair and fell off. The one on my right hand was affixed for 12 days, but about 1/2 of it chipped off. Removal is done by using nail polish remover.

Overall, I LOVED this product! I received so many compliments on it from friends and even strangers who stopped and asked where I got my nails done. Application was easy, and fairly quick (best part was no drying time for the strips). Depending on your nail length, you can get anywhere from 1 to 3 applications from each box.

*TIP* Since they are real nail polish, they can dry up if you open the package and don't use all the strips. I suggest putting them in a zip lock bag if you don't use them all.

Sally Hansen Salon Effects come in ton of different colors and designs

They retail for $9.99 and can be found at drug stores, mass merchandisers, or food stores.

The complimentary products mentioned in this review were provided to me by Influenster for testing purposes. All opinions are mine.

Bath & Body Works Fine Fragrance Mist

A full-sized bottle of Bath & Body Works' Fine Fragrance Mist in 'Twilight Woods' was also included in my Spring Beauty VoxBox from Influenster.

According to Bath & Body's Works site, the fragrance notes are:
  • Top Notes: Juicy Berry, Sparkling Mandarin, hint of Coconut 
  • Mid Notes: Creamy Frangipani, Soft Mimosa, Wet Honeysuckle, Wild Freesia, Apricot Nectar 
  • Dry Notes: Oud Wood, Musk, Orris, Vanilla Milk, Warm Woods
Personally, I really disliked this smell. It was way too musky for me, and I prefer light, fresh scents. (I couldn't smell the juicy berry or coconut or mandarin; the musk was just really powerful. I also gave it to my grandmother, who usually wears scents like this). I really did like the packaging though. It came in an ombre tinted bottle, with a firm clear cap and an easy dispensing spray.

Would I buy it?
  • Unfortunately, not in this scent. BUT, fortunately, the BBW Fine Fragrance mists come in over TWENTY different scents!! Looking online, I'd like to try Sweet Pea, Black Raspberry Vanilla, Sea Island Cotton, or Secret Wonderland.
Bath & Body Works Fine Fragrance Mists come in over 20 different fragrances and retail for $14.

BBW has a sale right now where you can buy three and get two free, or you can use code mist10 online to get a free fragrance mist ($14 value) when you spend $10 (exp. June 3, 2012).

The complimentary products mentioned in this review were provided to me by Influenster for testing purposes. All opinions are mine.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Volcom Purchases

I was looking at Hautelook and didn't find anything I liked at their last Sunday blowout (what's up with that?), but I did find these as part of their regular sale.

I was originally planning on purchasing an outfit (one of the shorts and another shirt, not pictured here) but then I couldn't decide on which shorts to pick, lol, so I just bought both shorts and figured I could find a shirt somewhere else!
Here's some closeups!

I like the print on 'em both! I'm not entirely sure, but I think they have pockets. You can kinda see it more on the close-up of the coral pair. Very summerish, perfect for Florida this summer!
***You can use this link to sign up with Hautelook.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Hautelook Purchases -- YAY CARDIGANS!!

My last order from Hautelook hasn't arrived yet (but it's been scheduled to arrive during the beginning to middle of May!), but Hautelook had another Sunday night blowout, and since I had about $60 worth of credit left over, I decided to go shopping. This week's themed event (I guess it's a theme?) was specific colors. There were a Basic Black: Always Elegant, Going Grey: Sleek Styles, Classic Whites: Color Blowout, The Best Browns: Rich Neutrals, Red Hot: Pops of Color, and Feeling Blue: Cool Hues events. I really wanted to add some color to my wardrobe, so I checked out the red and blue events first, but didn't find anything I liked and settled with the whites and grays (which are good, basic colors, right!? lol. I can always wear bright colors underneath these basics). I only spent about 25 minutes shopping these events, which is quick for me. Got in and got out, lol.

Anywhere, here's what I bought:

Sweet Romeo Striped Button Front Cardigan
Regular price: $48
My price: $10

It has small buttons on the front, and looks light and nice for school.

Sweet Romeo Long Sleeve Open Cardigan
Regular price: $72
My price: $10

I like the narrow sleeves on this one and the nautical vibe.

Sweet Romeo Cascade Ruffle Open Front Cardigan
Regular price: $68
My price: $20

I like the elongated front on this one. Nice and drapey.

Sweet Romeo Curve Front Open Cardigan
Regular price: $12
My price: $62

I didn't snag this one right away, and when I went back to look at it it was on hold. SO I kept refreshing the page 'till my size showed up! I love the curve of this one.

This was another cardigan I reaaaaaaallly wanted, but it had been on hold for a while, and my items were expiring (you only have 15 minutes to keep your items in your cart!)

I really liked the buckle on this one, but I guess some things just aren't meant to be!

Between last week's order, and this week's, I'm waiting on the arrival of one shirt, one pair of ponte pants, and a total of seven cardigans! The total spent out of pocket on both this and last week's clothes was only $27.50. WHICH IS CRAZY GOOD! (I purchased a voucher from Plum District, $25 for $50 worth of merchandise (I also had a 10% discount for this), my first order from Hautelook was unable to be fulfilled so they gave me $20 per item purchased in credit, and I paid $5 this order after my credit was applied).

ALL IN ALL, they were super good deals, and I'm really looking forward to both receiving my clothing, and continuing to shop at Hautelook!

***Links in this post are my referral links. If you use this link to sign up with Plum District, you receive $5 off your first purchase. You can use this link to sign up with Hautelook.