Sunday, October 23, 2016

Review: Parfumerie Generale Musc Maori

Parfumerie Generale's Musc Maori is a truly luscious scent, but only suitable for the gourmand lover. Its dominant note is milk chocolate. A creamy, cocoa-rich pot of it. You can smell it clearly in the top notes and just as distinctly in the drydown, with no evolution in that particular note. What changes is its accoutrements. The top notes feature a sweet, milky citrus that I smell as lemon but others have noted seems more like orange to their noses. It brightens and lifts and cuts the candy element a bit. As the scent dries down, it warms a bit with a touch of tonka and a slight hint of wood notes. It is remarkably tenacious. I spritz once and it lasts a good 24 hours. It even clings to the skin after a shower. $125 for 50 ml, and highly recommended.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Review: Caudalie Divine Legs

I embrace my paleness. I do. But I'm reaching the age at which the paleness accentuates things like spider veins, the scars I've accumulated over the years, and dimples. Of course, I never remember to apply self-tanner the night before I intend to wear a skirt or dress. This is where Caudalie Divine Legs comes in handy. It is a tinted oil-gel (they call it a lotion but it does not seem lotion-y to me at all). You see the color right away, no waiting for it to develop. This means you can also see if there are any patchy spots and correct them before you walk out the door. I apply it about ten minutes before I get dressed and have never had it transfer to my clothing.  It washes off in the shower, though, so if you do a midday workout, beware. On top of these other benefits, I find it smells lovely and is moisturizing, to boot. The only downside? It's $38 - significantly more than Jergens.

Below, you'll see an image of it blended out (top of my wrist/forearm) and globbed on to show the natural color. (Not orange!)

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Review: Kiehls Antiperspirant and Deodorant Cream

I purchased this Kiehls deodorant because I like the brand for skincare and hair products and was curious to see what they could do with something as mundane as deodorant. I'm sorry to say this one disappointed me. The number one thing you need a deodorant to do is keep you from being stinky. The Kiehls was fine on low-stress days but during the times I really needed it to kick in, it failed me. It is unscented, and I suspect that may have something to do with it. The antiperspirant aspect worked about as well as any antiperspirant ever works for me (which is to say, not terribly well). The one thing I did like about this is that it goes on clear and does not rub off on my clothes at all. So, I may keep it around to gradually use up on days that I just plan to lounge around, but I'm going back to my Dove Clinical Strength for most days. (Substantially cheaper than the $20 Kiehls, as well).

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Review: Prada Infusion d'Iris Eau de Toilette

I've had this workhorse of a fragrance for a long while and I don't know why I haven't reviewed it yet. This is a perfume I never want to be without. It is not a bombshell scent and it is pretty subtle, but that quality makes it work for pretty much any situation. The orris is predominant in every phase but it comes across as more of a clean rootiness than dirty. This is perhaps because of the violets and cedar that temper it. Infusion d'Iris manages to be both soft and cuddly and tenacious - it lasts all day on me.

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Review: Zelens Z Pure Cleansing Liquid Balm

I've long been curious about Zelens products but they are so prohibitively expensive that I haven't wanted to spring for anything. Until now - Space NK had this cleanser reduced to $40 (down from a whopping $80). I am rather partial to cleansing oil to remove my make up and this sounded a lot like that, but slightly different. I've never heard of a cleanser described as "liquid balm" before. It's slightly thicker than my Shu Uemura cleansing oil but thinner than my DHC, if that helps you. I apply this to my face dry and then wash off. It gets most of my make up and sunscreen in one go and rinses off for the most part. However, I do feel a bit filmy if I don't use a second cleanser after this. It is very nourishing and non-drying, but the downside to that is that it rather likes to stick around. This would not be a good choice for anyone who is breakout-prone, in my opinion, because the clogging potential seems pretty high. If you have dry skin, though, you're more likely to love it.  Overall, while I do like it and will use it up, it is not my favorite cleanser in the world and I am gobsmacked at the thought of paying full price for it. That is just not happening.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Review: Oribe Gold Lust Nourishing Hair Oil

It's surprisingly difficult to find a leave-in conditioning treatment that doesn't weigh down my hair or make it feel oily. My hair is curly and fine but I have a lot of it, which is a rough combination to find products that suit. This Oribe hair oil is LOVE and I have repurchased several times. It has a wonderful combination of lightweight oils - including argan, jasmine, and shea butter - that provide nourishment and prevent the dreaded split ends. Yet, it has no dampening effect on volume or curl. It also smells lovely, like all Oribe products do. That is the wonderful part. The not so wonderful part is the price. Ouch, this stuff is expensive - $52 for a small, 3.4 fl oz bottle. I use a lot of it at a time so it doesn't last me that long. Still, I keep going back for more because it's that good and suits me so well. For curly girls, that's hard to find.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Review: Arcona Raspberry Clarifying Pads

Seasonal changes tend to wreak havoc on my skin and now that Virginia has pivoted briskly toward fall, I'm experiencing more breakouts than usual. These Arcona pads have soothing witch hazel, exfoliating salicyclic acid, antibacterial tea tree leaf oil, and raspberry extract that is supposed to be antimicrobial but that I think is just helpful in making this concoction not smell totally awful. It actually smells fruity and pleasant. I take one pad each evening when I can sense discord brewing in my epidermis and swipe it all over my face, followed by a lightweight moisturizer. These pads are gentle and non-drying and they have definitely helped fend off pimples. $36 for a jar of 45 is not awful (though I do wish they'd give you more for that price).