Friday, February 25, 2011

HEMA loose and compact powders review

I do realize that HEMA cosmetics is not a top-notch brand, but because I am so overwhelmed by their eyeshadow base, I decided to give their powders a shot as well (no pun intended :-)). So, I bought both cheapo products: compact powder (refillable, contaning Silk and vitamin A, C, E, no 21, 14 g) and a loose powder, contains light reflecting pigments (11 g), thinking they would have the same magical properties as the eyeshadow base.

Well, to cut to the chase, they don't. The compact powder has a cute mirror. The coverage is very sheer and it does not help the oily skin to stay matte, which is something very important for me. The loose powder - this was my first and I think the last loose powder. It just flies everyone with every time you snap the box open, on your clothes, in the sink....the light diffusing particles are nice but the effect was similar as with the compact poweder, a very low longevity. Not my favourite products and I will not repurcharse them.

How to clean your makeup brushes

2 000 000 people can not be wrong about Michelle Phan :-)
Though, I have to say, I use baby shampoo to clean my brushes.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

ELF cosmetics - eyeslipsface

Google is my best friend :-) I recently discovered the official Belgian website for Eyelipsface cosmetics or ELF - - an extremely affordable brand that has something for everyone - eyeshadow primers for 1 - 4 EUR, brush kits for 35 EUR...Delivery is free for all orders above 75 EUR (this will be a challenge with their prices...)

Dimethicone in skin products

Dimethicone is skin protectant (emollient) and water repellent that forms a protective barrier on the skin and is often used to facilitate smooth application of a product (source: Generally speaking, it is the main ingredient in any makeup primer (L'Oreal magic perfecting base among them), as it effectively smoothens the skin's surface and locks oil the makeup. Essentially, you do not need an expensive makeup primer to achieve the same effect, as long as your moisturizer contains dimethicone (Monistat gel).

I found one product (sadly, only in the US, but also check ebay) that has a similar impact: Aveeno daily mosturizing lotion (active igredient dimethicone 1.3 %)

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Essence of beauty - travel kit - face

I bought this kit in New York in CVS for 9,90 $, but it is also available via eBay. It contains 6 brushes, which are supposed to be for your face and eye makeup - powder brush (I'd say, for emergency powder application), blush brush (cute, soft and very precise), eyeshadow brush (a bit too large for my liking, as I do not have plenty of eyelid space...but ideal for the all over lid colour), concealer brush (works well for primer), eyeliner brush (I use it for eyeshadow...), smudge brush (rare! and very handy). The only brush that has excessive shedding is the powder brush, the others are of a surprisingly high quality for such a cheap kit. I do not really use all the brushes for their "prescribed" purpose, but hey, feel free to be creative :-) This kit is super for a beginner or as a add-on to your travel collection.

Makeup for brown eyes

I was a bit surprised about the selection of colours for brown eyes - light beige, mocca, brown and violet, but why not? NYC palette contains the classic combo of 4 eyeshadows (2 shimmery, 2 matte), a primer and a highlighter.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Almond oil

We have already discussed the benefits of rubbing alcohol but there is another useful beauty helper: huile d'amande douce (should you ask for it in a shop) or almond oil. It has sweet and nutty (daaaa) aroma and it is usually of a very light yellow colour.

Ideal for massaging (to releave the muscle pain) as the skin absorbs it really easily and soothes any irritation. It restores the moisture in the skin, so it is suitable for dry complexions (rich in vitamins A and B). You can also press it into your nails before you go to bed to nourish the cuticles or into your split hair ends. I use it especially in the winter, when my skin tends to be flakey or after shaving to balance the dried up skin.

I saw the cheapest almond oil at Di (5 EUR, their own brand) or Cattier Paris (11,45 EUR), but they also sell it at Reserve naturelle (10 EUR).

Cattier Paris - organic cosmetics

Drugstore chain Di sells a full range of organic cosmetics Cattier Paris and I think these products are definitely worth a try! They say on on their website that CATTIER Organic cosmetics are formulated with natural ingredients partly produced by Organic Farming methods. They do not contain parabens, phenoxyethanol, synthetic colouring or fragrance, or any petroleum derivatives.

My favourites are clay products: scrub and face mask. They both cost under 10 EUR and contain 99,1 % natural ingredients - the very reason why the green clay has a shelf life of only 6 months. The scrub is gentle and prepares your skin for the application of a face mask. The green clay mask effectively removes any oils in the skin and dries quickly on the face. However, if you have dry complexion, you should try their mask yellow clay (with witch hazel).

Monday, February 21, 2011

Rubbing alcohol

If you do not own one of those little bottles of rubbing alcohol, you should go and get one either at Di, Kruidvat or any pharmacy (anything from 2 -10 EUR a bottle) immediately. The uses are endless for any cosmetics junkie: cleaning of your tools, disinfecting brushes, earings, piercings, razors (to prevent red spots after shaving), tweezers, filers, needles, removing oily/greasy parts on the flat iron or any other surface (such as your nails, prior to the nail varnish application). Also, applied in small amounts (on a cotton Q-tip), rubbing alcohol can help heal/dry acne. Last, but not least, rubbing alcohol is used to press eyeshadow pigments into an eyeshadow pan (or any time your favourite powder, blush, eyeshadow broke and you want it fix it).

Makeup organizing tip 2

Storing your brushes, pencils and lipstics in a organized way is seemingly an easy task, you just put them in a pencil holder, right? Only, every time I went to a papèterie, I went out empty-handed...But I had my break-through on Saturday in Euro-shop (2,50 EUR). I bought a holder that is meant to store the cutlery after washing and it is simply perfect :-). I also bought decoration beads in CASA, to stop the brushes from moving around in the container.