Posts Tagged ‘beauty’

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[Haul] Recent Beauty-Related Purchases (some from coupons!)

May 5, 2014

 

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Alright, so there are going to be a lot of pictures in this post! I’m going to show some items in detail, and some aren’t pictured in the picture above. I posted a haul not that long ago with some Korean cosmetics. I’ve got some more shots of those in this post.

Since there will be a lot of pictures, I’m putting it all below the cut!

Let’s start off with a list of what I got recently (not including items from previous haul post!)

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[Review] Up & Up Oil Blotting Sheets

April 25, 2014

 

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Alright, here’s a review on the oil blotting sheets I’ve been using lately. I remember years ago using Neutrogena Oil Blotting Sheets (at least I think it was Neutrogena….maybe it was Clean & Clear?) and I loved them. They were blue sheets and I used to rub them (not blot…) ALL OVER my face. Since I was a teenager, my skin was super, super oily! I just liked how it would turn the blue sheet clear…haha. Kept me entertained I guess?

Anyway. I stopped using oil blotting sheets for a while, and when I went back to them, it was after I discovered the ELF brand. I loved that they had cosmetics for cheap, since I was in college and not making much money! I bought many packs of their oil blotting sheets, which only cost $1. These sheets are much thinner and kind of a greenish color. They do remove oil, but I felt like they didn’t remove ALL of the oil, and I had to use multiple sheets…

So instead of buying more of those, a couple of weeks ago I looked for a different brand while in Target. I saw the name brand ones and these Target brand Up & Up ones were right beside them. I don’t remember how much the brand names cost, but these cost $4.77. I’m okay with that price since you get 70 sheets, and the quality is much better than the ELF ones!

So I am very pleased with these. I was pleasantly surprised to see that these sheets are also blue, like the ones I used to use. After trying it out, I can say they perform very much like the name brand ones! They absorb way more oil than the ELF ones. (Sorry for the gross oil in the picture by the way…but I wanted to show you what it looks like after I use one! The bottom picture was after I used it on most of my face…I got even more oil off than that……….I don’t wanna talk about it).

Anyway, I’ll be buying these from now on. They pick up the oil very easily by just blotting them on the skin, they hold much more oil than the ELF ones, and they come in a larger pack. Sure, they cost more, but I think it’s worth it since they are better quality and come in a larger pack. ^_^

How do you like to remove excess oil? Powder? Oil sheets? Something else?

Thanks for reading!

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[Haul] More Korean Beauty Products!

April 24, 2014

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Okay…I know I need to get it in gear and write some reviews soon. I’ve had so much new stuff to try out. I need to take some time to form some opinions! I’ll be going home to visit my parents this weekend, which means I can film videos. Hopefully I’ll get a couple filmed and uploaded while I’m there. I’m thinking an April Favorites video and an April Ipsy bag video!

Anyway, on to the haul!

I mean to take more pictures…but I’ll just take more detailed pictures when I actually post the reviews/first impressions.

What I bought (click on the link to buy it on Amazon):

Free samples I received:

  • Aloe Propolis Soothing Gel
  • Apieu Essential Source Snail essence
  • Snail Bee essence
  • Nose pore strip
  • Etude House Hello Wash body wash
  • Etude House Fresh Cherry tint
  • Etude House BB cream
  • another sample I can’t read…I thin it’s BB cream. Will have to research!

So I’ve linked the products above to their Amazon pages (if it’s available). Some of these items I purchased through Ebay and some I purchased through W2Beauty (which I’ve mentioned before!)

I’ll be trying this all out soon and coming back with first impressions or reviews! The Etude House toner is actually a repurchase, even though I haven’t finished the first one yet!

Do you have any of these items? What do you think about them?

 

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[Tips] Cosmetic Ingredients You Should Avoid

April 23, 2014

cosmetic-ingredientsSo back when I started my blog (Beauty Cleric), it was actually called “The Beauty Scholar.” I chose that name because I was going through a silly crisis where I was afraid to use any makeup/skincare product because they all had harmful chemicals! I have since calmed down, though. =)

Although I don’t avoid “bad” makeup ingredients altogether, I do still care about what’s in my products. Before I purchase something, I at least take a look at the ingredients label. I don’t buy only natural/organic products, but I try to steer clear of some of the bigger red flags. In this post I figured I’d cover some of the ingredients that are said to be bad for you. You can of course make your own judgment calls about what products to use/not use, but I just wanted to make everyone aware. Before a couple of years ago, I had no idea there were potentially harmful ingredients in my makeup…I also didn’t know that the FDA doesn’t monitor makeup ingredients!

Without further blabbering, here’s a list of ingredients you may want to avoid!

Oxybenzone

This chemical is commonly found in many sunscreens, which is problematic since we should all be wearing some form of sun protection to prevent skin cancer! Oxybenzone has been linked to problems with cell development, allergies, and hormone disruption. While many still believe oxybenzone is safe in small amounts, it is better to just avoid the ingredient altogether if you’re concerned and choose a more natural sunscreen. Look for titanium dioxide or zinc oxide sunscreens.

Parabens

Parabens come in several forms with the three most common being methylparaben, butylparaben, and propylparaben. There are several other types of parabens, so you should try to avoid any product that contains the ending “paraben” in any of the ingredients. Parabens can be found in a large number of beauty products ranging from cosmetics and skin cleansers to deodorants and toothpastes. While there has recently been an increase in the number of “paraben-free” products, there are still many brands which use these preservatives. The danger of parabens lies in their alleged tie to increasing one’s risk of breast cancer. They have also been linked to hormone disruption. Look for alternative brands and products that carry the “paraben-free” label, and if you must use products with parabens, check the label to ensure that more than one type of paraben is on the ingredients list. Parabens are less harmful when mixed together!

Fragrance

Lots of beauty products list“fragrance” somewhere on their labels, but did you know that there can be as many as 200 ingredients mixed together to form the fragrance? The multitude of ingredients mixed to create fragrances for products are not on the ingredients list and are instead covered by one just word… This means there can be many hidden and potentially dangerous chemicals in your products! It is best to look for “fragrance-free” products in order to avoid the dangerous chemicals that are often used in synthetic fragrances. Many of these chemicals can cause allergic reactions, rashes, and possibly hormone disruption.

Phthalates

(Don’t ask me how to pronounce that. I have no clue!!)

This ingredient is not usually listed on the label, even if it’s in the product. However, if it is, you may want to think twice about using that product. Phthalates are used in some cosmetics to help prolong colors and scents, but they have been linked to hormone disruption and birth defects. Pregnant and nursing women should take  special care to avoid products with this ingredient. Look for abbreviations such as DBP, DEHP, and DEP–these abbreviations indicate the use of phthalates.

Summary

Anyway, as I stated above, I’m not so strict about my products as I used to be when it first scared the daylights out of me. I do still read the labels and try to find safer alternatives when I can. I also like to order cosmetics from Korea, because I know that in many other countries in Europe and Asia, cosmetic ingredients that are okay in the US are banned! I usually feel safer with foreign products!

If you want to check the safety of ingredients or specific products, you can try looking at the Skin Deep database. They list harmful ingredients and rate products on their safety.

Thanks for reading!

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[Tips] My Nightly Skin Care Routine

April 15, 2014

So today I read a post entitled “4 Overnight Beauty Products You Should Be Using,” and it got me thinking about my own nightly beauty routine. (Oh how it has changed over the recent years!) I’ve gone from super lazy, to a dedicated skin care routine, back to lazy, and finally to a (still dedicated) routine that I can actually stick with!

The article I linked to above gives a very simple skin care routine to follow for night time. Even though I’m super lazy at times, I’ve been making an effort to stick to a multi-step skin care routine, because I really want to take care of my skin now so that I’m not sorry later. We all know sleep is extremely important to healthy skin, but (as the article says), you either get 8 hours or you don’t! I have a feeling most of us don’t…so we need to up our skin care game even more!

I think the steps listed in this article are great–if you want a basic night time skin care routine, use those steps as a guide! If you’re willing to put even more time into your skin care routine, then use the basic routine but add steps where necessary. Your skin care routine should be tailored to your skin and its needs. If you’re new to skin care (especially multi-step routines), I recommend shopping for skin care products on a website that breaks the products down by skin type. HSN’s skin care page does this. Analyze your skin and figure out what you want to see happen–do you need to brighten your skin? Even out the tone? Hydrate it because it’s dry?

It took me a long time to figure out what my nightly skin care routine should consist of…but I think I’ve finally got a routine that works for me! Below I’ll list step by step what I do to keep my skin healthy, even when I’m not getting enough sleep (or water)!

Let me know in the comments section what your skin care routine is! I’m always looking for new ideas! (Questions/other comments are welcomed as well!)

My Nightly Routine

download1. Remove makeup.

I like to use the Almay eye makeup remover pads just on my eyes and then take a makeup wipe to the rest of my face. I’ve been testing out some oil cleansers, too, so if it’s an oil cleanse night, I skip the makeup wipe and just cleanse with oil.

 

51ceAil70ZL._SL1500_2. Cleanse.

I’m currently using the Simple Foaming Cleanser and the St. Ives Apricot Facial Scrub. I alternate between the two of these. I use the St. Ives up to 3 times a week, and the Simple cleanser the rest of the week. Whenever I cleanse with the Simple foaming cleanser, I use my Luna Mini!

3. Exfoliate (twice a week).

I use a Japanese brand product for exfoliation. It’s called Cure, and it’s the most gentle exfoliate I have ever used. I only use this a couple of times a week.

 

wonderpore4. Tone.

Right now I’m trying out the Korean brand Etude House Wonder Pore Toner!

5. Treat acne.

I don’t always do this, but I’ve been having breakouts lately! So I just grab a Noxzema acne pad and swipe it all over my face.

 

missha-misa-yei-hyun-eyecream-30ml5. Moisturize (or serum)

I tend to use my serum in the morning, so at night, I just apply a moisturizer. I’m testing out a Korean one now.

6. Eye cream.

I do use a separate cream for my eyes. Right now it’s the Etude House Collagen Moistfull cream!

So I know that may seem like a lot, but night time is when my serious skin care happens! What products do you use, and do you have tips for a night time skin care routine?

Thanks for reading! If you have any requests or want reviews on the products mentioned, let me know in the comments!

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[Review &How To] Garnier Clean + Nourshing Cleansing Oil

April 3, 2014

20140315_210328Alright, well, I purchased the items pictured here a little while ago during one of my couponing sprees. I was waiting for a good deal on them, because I’ve been seeing this new line in stores a lot lately. Also, I’ve been wanting to give cleansing oil a try for a long time now, but I didn’t know of any brands of oil that weren’t high-end! This may not be the first drugstore brand cleansing oil, but it’s the first one I’ve seen!

I also found a Korean product recently that is also a cleansing oil, and it wasn’t too expensive so I wouldn’t call it “high-end” either. I have yet to try it out, but I am excited to try it soon and compare it to the Garnier one!

The new Garnier Clean + line has 4 cleansers (that I have personally seen). I picked up the Nourshing Cleansing Oil, the Purifying Foam Cleanser, and the Blackhead Eliminating Scrub. They also had a cream cleanser. Since cream cleansers aren’t really my cup of tea, I just picked up the other three. For now, I’ll be reviewing just the cleansing oil!

About the Product

So the cleansing oil packaging says it “dissolves impurities and makeup & replenishes skin.” It contains Jojoba and Macadamia oils. Let me start off by saying that I didn’t read the packaging very well in the store…because I’m SUPER allergic to macadamia nuts! When I got home and saw that the product contained macadamia oil, I wasn’t sure if that would cause me to have an allergic reaction or not…so I just tested the product on my arm first to see if anything happened. Nothing happened, which surprised me, but I’m glad to say the cleanser does not cause me to have any type of allergic reaction, even when I used it on my face!

The cleansing oil is marketed for “dry skin.” This is something else I didn’t notice about the packaging until I got home. Each cleanser is marketed for a different skin type. I can’t remember what the cream cleanser is for, but the Blackhead Scrub is for oily skin and the Foam Cleanser is for combination skin. I believe I have combination skin (but don’t quote me on that…haha). I figured that I can probably get away with all 3 of them since my skin has characteristics of being both dry and oily…

If you’ve never used a cleansing oil before, let me say first off that it’s a really different experience! I wasn’t sure what to expect, and I was also a bit wary of cleansing my skin with oil (since I do get quite oily). However, even though the cleanser is marketed for dry skin, I think any skin type can use this cleanser! Oil will pull excess oil off of your face, but it will also moisturize dry skin. I get why they chose to market to people with dry skin, but really, they’re just feeding the misconception that people with oily skin shouldn’t cleanse their skin with oil. I don’t think this cleanser made me any more oily than I already am. (And you can’t expect a cleanser to fix all of your skin problems for you anyway! If your skin is overly oily, it’s because your skin is really dry on the inside. It’s producing more oil to overcompensate for not being moisturized. Cleansing with oil may actually help to balance out your oiliness, but you should stay hydrated and use a good moisturizer too!)

How to Use

I typically take two to three pumps of the cleansing oil and warm it up in my hands. It’s very important to ensure that you start with a COMPLETELY DRY face and COMPLETELY DRY hands! If your hands or face are wet, you’ll ruin the first stage of oil cleansing!

You can remove your makeup with a makeup wipe if you want, but the oil cleanser can be used to remove both eye and face makeup. I’m a little skittish about removing my eye makeup with oil, so I typically remove that first with a makeup wipe. Just remember to dry your face/hands off.

After warming the oil up in my hands, I just spread it out all over my face (and avoid my eyes). Then, I start massaging it with my fingertips, going in slow, circular motions. This is supposed to break up the makeup and impurities on your face, plus facial massage is just great for your skin anyway! This will also give the oil a chance to pull away excess oil on your face and hydrate your skin at the same time. I do this for about three minutes. Yes, it a slow process, and that’s why I only cleanse with oil at night. (I don’t use it every night; I like to alter my cleansers during the week).

After three minutes, you should have dissolved everything on your face, so it’s time to emulsify the oil. Take a little bit of water on your hands and rub it into the oil. Keep doing this, without washing the oil off. It should turn white/milky. Rub it around for about another minute, and then rinse it off with warm water. You can pat your face dry or just let it air dry.

Review

So, it’s definitely got a different method to it. I’ve been told that in some Asian skin care routines, oil cleansing is actually the PRE-CLEANSING! So after they finish with oil cleansing, they use another cleanser (like a foam cleanser). This is mostly why I bought the foam cleanser to go with the cleansing oil!

You can certainly use this product on its own, and you don’t even have to have a makeup remover! I feel like it did clean my skin well, but on some days I definitely want to use a scrub/exfoliate too because I just don’t feel totally clean unless I’ve scrubbed! =)

My skin was left nice and soft and it felt very hydrated. I was going to follow up with the foam cleanser, but I usually just use the oil and nothing else. I think I’ll try following up with the foam cleanser next and see what that does. (But I would wait in between the two cleansers in order to give my skin time to absorb the hydration from the oil cleansing).

My skin is pretty sensitive, and I didn’t notice any issue while using this cleanser. I think it’s a great alternative method for cleansing the skin, and I love how it makes my skin feel. Overall, I am enjoying this product and I think anyone with oily/combo skin should definitely give it a try. See if it will help balance out your skin! Mine has been so wacky lately I can’t comment about the products effect on that, but as I keep using it I’m hoping my skin will calm down! I’m also excited to start the Korean cleansing oil and let you all know how that goes!

Some people mention their skin not feeling clean after using oil. If you feel like it leaves a residue, make sure you’re emulsifying the oil enough and also rinsing well. If you still feel like there is residue, use a foam cleanser afterwards. You can also just use a toner.

Pros: leaves skin smooth, soft, and hydrated, doesn’t irritate skin, contains good ingredients for skin
Cons: takes longer than normal cleansing, may leave a residue for some
Verdict: Try it out!

Thanks for reading!

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[Haul] New Korean Products from W2Beauty!

March 25, 2014

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So I had an entire haul video filmed for this haul, and I was really happy I was able to do that instead of making a post about it….but then…the video came out all dark! I have no idea why, but you can’t really see anything clearly. -_-  I even checked the video while I was filming to make sure everything looked alright! It was just ruined, so I decided to do a post instead, since I have pictures of everything before I used it.

Then I took a closer look at my pictures, and most of them are blurry. -sigh- I’m so irritated. Haha. Anyway…here’s my haul post.

*note: this is not a sponsored post

Click to see the haul! (More pictures below the cut too!)

 

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[First Impressions] Holika Holika Holy Cat Eyeshadow Trio

March 20, 2014

holy cat lookSorry the pictures of my eyes aren’t great quality…=/ It looked better on my computer screen, and now that I’ve resized it it doesn’t look so great. Meh. Just keep in mind the colors show up better in real life than they are here in the pictures. The khaki color and the black are more pigmented than the pink, but you can definitely see the hints of pink and a bit of peach in real life!

So anyway, I ordered this a couple of weeks ago on Ebay (I had originally ordered it from another website. They didn’t have it so I got another Holy Cat eyeshadow in a different color! Still waiting on that shipment ^^) So I looked online for this one since I wanted to try both. This is the Holy Cat Eyeshadow Trio in #2 Khaki Smoky Cat by Holika Holika (a Korean brand).

I tried to translate the Korean on the back of the product, but I didn’t get very far! Haha. It says something about making your eyes look confident like a cat’s? I think? And it says it’s a lovely eyeshadow trio in the shape of a heart (the black part). But since it’s eyeshadow, it’s self explanatory and we don’t really need to know what it says on the product.

In my earlier post, you can see a picture of the packaging, WHICH I ABSOLUTELY LOVE. I also love that the name is “holy cat.” I couldn’t resist. Had to get it. =)

I’m pleased to say I do like the product, quite a bit! This is only the first time I’ve used it, so I can’t give a full detailed review, but I am happy to give my impressions of it as of today. As I keep using it, I’ll note any different observations and write a more detailed review. However, I think it’s quite possible to review an eyeshadow fairly quickly, since it either works or doesn’t.

First off, I swatched the colors on my hand. The black and khaki come off fairly pigmented, but I was a bit surprised at the pink shade. It didn’t come off well at all, so I swatched it a bit darker and could see the pink. The pink shade is mostly just sparkle, but I actually like that. You can still see a light wash of pink on the eyes, and quite a bit of sparkles! The other two shades are really sparkly as well! If you like matte eyeshadows, this won’t be for you. I happen to love sparkly eyeshadows, so I was excited to try it out today.

I used the pink all over the lid, the khaki in the outer half of my eye, and the black in the outermost section of my eye, blending them together. The shadows are really soft to the touch and I think they blend well. I’ve had them on for 8.5 hours so far and haven’t really needed to touch up. I did touch up the pink just a little bit ago because it looked like it faded a bit, but I really didn’t have to do that…you could still see it, I just wanted a bit more color. They haven’t creased yet either. I used ELF’s eyeshadow primer (the $1 one). The only other thing on my eyes is a highlight on my brow bone (a shadow softie from Almay in a pale yellow shade).

So I think the shadows go on well, can be built up color wise, blend well, are really soft, and last for a long time. Since they are super sparkly, I have noticed some sparkles that have fallen down under my eyes and onto my face, probably just from blinking. I don’t mind it, since I love sparkles, but I just wanted to put that out there. In my opinion it’s not really that noticeable anyway.

I’m excited to try out the other color of the Holy Cat eyeshadow. Can’t wait for that package to come in!

Thanks for reading!

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[News] Look What Arrived from Korea Yesterday =)

March 20, 2014

holy cat

 

It’s an eyeshadow trio by Holika Holika called “Holy Cat.” I think the shade is called #2 Khaki Smoky Cat.

Trying it out today! Will write a first impressions later and a full review later on.

The two free samples were Mizon’s Returning Starfish Cream, which is basically a night cream with starfish extract. (I have no clue what that’s supposed to do).

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[Quick Look] BaekHyun Inspired Red/Black Eyes

March 19, 2014

So…I did a thing. Even if you don’t like Kpop (Korean Pop!), you can still enjoy this look. =)  I think it gives a nice definition to the eyes. It’s more noticeable up close of course, but you can still see the red from a normal distance. It doesn’t look too overpowering, and I really like the combination of red/black.

It took me way longer to get this right than I’d like to admit! Anyway…Below are some pictures of the look I recreated, as well as some pictures of the original! The original look was worn to the Seoul Music Awards by BaekHyun of Kpop group EXO. (They’re awesome, by the way, if you’re interested in foreign music!)

My recreation isn’t perfect, but it was my first go. I tried! I think I’ll fool with it a bit more.

I’ll get a bit of a brighter red and maybe in a gel liner, because I was using shadow. I think it would be easier to recreate with red eyeliner (gel) instead of the shadow since I need to draw a line to extend my eye shape. We’ll see what I can find and try again =)

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