Friday, November 7, 2014

Clinique Superbalm Lip Treatment

I'm not new to Clinique Superbalms, but I hadn't noticed they now have a Superbalm Lip Treatment! So when I did stumble upon it last holiday season, I added the 7mL/0.24oz. full size tube to my cart during the Saks 5th Avenue Holiday 2013 GWP event.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Dr Ci:Labo Aqua Collagen Gel Enrich Lift EX

Update November 6, 2014.

I placed an order with Beauty Habit recently and received a pair of Dr Ci-Labo Aqua Collagen Gel Enrich Lift EX, each 1.5g/0.05oz.

Having had the ammonia-filled experience below with 2 of my mini 10g jars from Japan, I tore open these two sample packets to see whether they would stink. Well guess what, they DO! Granted they weren't as overpoweringly odorous like my two jars, but the ammonia stench is present and still obviously discernible. My god, I just don't understand who would buy this stuff! Who would knowingly apply a gel that reeks of ammonia? Not me. I tossed these two packets into the trash after taking a sniff (and photos for proof, of course). So I guess this is it for me, no more Dr.Ci:Labo anything.

Original post September 4, 2014.

I had a total of 2 mini 10g jars of Dr Ci:Labo Aqua Collagen Gel Enrich Lift EX I received back in 2012, right before I left Japan. They were from 2 separate sample packs, the Gold Lift Set and the Gold Lift Sample Set. Last week I finally took one out, intending to use as a daytime moisturizer.

I have been storing all my cosmetics and skincare products very well. I had to. As you can see from some of my reviews, it could be a couple of years until I can get to using a product. To keep my items fresh, my rule of thumb is that until I'm ready to use it, its manufacturer's shrink wrap and/or sticker is not to be removed. In the case the product is not sealed, the jar/bottle/tube/what-have-you is not to be opened up and the product inside exposed to the air. This is how everything degrades - exposure to oxygen!

Dr Ci:Labo Gold Lift Set

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Decleor Aroma Cleanse 3 in 1 Hydra-Radiance Smoothing & Cleansing Mousse

This 100mL/3.3fl. oz. pump bottle of Decleor Aroma Cleanse 3 in 1 Hydra-Radiance Smoothing & Cleansing Mousse (wow, what a mouthful!) was actually a GWP from Beauty Habit from a Paul & Joe order earlier this summer.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Boscia Enlivening Amino-AG Eye Treatment

From the Boscia Surprise Beauty Box, I got a 15mL/0.5fl. oz. full size of Enlivening Amino-AG Eye Treatment, which I didn't get to until now :( Boscia has been having this promotion every year I think. Basically, spend $75 and get a surprise bag worth $250, which was how I got this loot that took me this long to use up, and that's after already giving away a few full sizes! And then between here and there I bought smaller things, which got me even more samples and deluxe trial sizes and whatnot. I guess there are always friends and family to give to ^.^

Monday, November 3, 2014

Beaua Organic Link Cleansing Oil

I've been using this 300mL pump bottle of Beaua Organic Link Cleansing Oil for a few weeks now. I bought it while in Taipei, at the same time as Beaua 10 Essences Cleansing Oil and PharmaAct Additive Free Cleansing Oil.

The bottle says this Organic Link Cleansing Oil has "essential oil fragrance," and that it's "infused with organic rosemary, lavender, thyme, sage, rose hip, bilberry leaf, cucumber, crataegus, and yarrow," so I was expecting it to have that nice herbal scent like the Beaua 10 Essences, but it turns out to smell like generic soap, very similar to the PharmaAct Additive Free! In terms of texture, it's almost identical to PharmaAct Additive Free, a cushy gel-like feel that isn't thick or greasy, and it doesn't melt into an oil after some massaging like the Beaua 10 Essences.

So if I have to choose, I would pick the Beaua 10 Essences, not only because it smells nice, but also because the PharmaAct Additive Free and this Beaua Organic Link feel like the same product in different packaging. And given that Kumano Yushi owns both Beaua and PharmaAct, they might very well be the same product in different packaging ^.^

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Chikuhodo Brushes

Among the big names of the Japanese artisan makeup brush world, Chikuhodo (竹宝堂) has two decades over Hakuhoho, having been established in 1952 (Hakuhodo was founded 1974). Chikuhodo started with calligraphy brushes, and makeup brushes didn't come along until 1960's. Still, the later venture proved quite successful as they are now the brush maker for high end brands such as Suqqu, Lunasol, RMK, etc. Check out this New York Times feature on Chikuhodo last April!

Anyway, when I was preparing for my first foray into Japanese makeup brushes, I skipped over Chikuhodo as I thought their prices were exorbitant. In general, between 2 similar brushes the Chikuhodo one will cost roughly 20-25% more than the Hakuhodo one. And honestly, I think the two brands are on par when it comes to quality and craftsmanship, so Chikuhodo's markup put me off somewhat. Then fast forward just this past August, distribution for Chikuhodo outside of Japan switched from Now-Eproject to Visage USA, and along with this switch is a roughly 20-25% reduction in price. To further sweeten the deal, the Visage USA ran a 3-months long promotion for an extra 18% off to celebrate new management! So yup, I finally got my hands on some Chikuhodo brushes, and at a fantastic price too! xD

A few notes for this batch and we'll move on to the goodies: 
1. As usual, all brushes were photographed pre-wash. Like Koyudo, the smallest Chikuhodo brush is starched, and the measurements are off for that brush. I did take post-wash pictures though. 
2. Again, cameras don't have the same depth-perception as our eyes. Measurements are only estimates and not so much engineer-precise, plus the starching.
3. Brushes are listed by collection, then model number. 
4. I totally smashed through my no-squirrel rule again ^.^"

Brushes in this batch, from left to right: Artist 12-2, G-03, G-04, G-05, G-10, Passion Eye Shadow, and R-S1. I've noted both the before and after prices, to give you an idea how significant the reduction was.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Koyudo Brushes Part III

Yes, more Koyudo brushes ^.^ I love them!

Quick notes for this batch: 
1. As usual, all brushes were photographed pre-wash. Unlike the Hakuhodo brushes, the smaller Koyudo eye shadow brushes are starched, which means measurements are totally off for those. I did take post-wash pictures for those. 
2. Despite some brushes being starched in the pre-wash photos, for visual folks like me a seeing is still better than nothing. CD Japan isn't too great about pictures and measurements of the Koyudo brushes.  
3. Again, cameras don't have the same depth-perception as our eyes. Measurements are only estimates and not so much engineer-precise, plus the starching of the brushes.
4. Brushes are listed by collection, then model number. 

Brushes in this batch, from left to right: BP002, BP034, fu-pa10-p, fu-pa11-p, Pr004, and Pr005.

Friday, October 31, 2014

Face Stockholm x JCrew Lipstick Part II

I really loved the Face Stockholm x JCrew Lipstick in French Martini, so I bought this Peony Pink color also.

All pictures taken in natural light without flash.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Maybelline ColorSensational Color Whisper Part III

Saw this Maybelline ColorSensational Color Whisper in 260 I Crave Coral on Citrine's blog way back in the spring, but for some reason the Walgreens in SF didn't stock them until the summer right before I moved away.

All pictures taken in natural light without flash.

I have already mentioned I don't like this formula so much, but this color looked like a pretty orange so I decided to pick it up when I saw it. 

260 I Crave Coral: and it's orange indeed, not coral at all! On my lips it turns a tad peachy but still no signs of coral, which is odd because oranges usually turn coral on me. Hmm... Either way, I do like the seemingly shimmer free translucency, and an orange that stays orange is relatively rare in my stash so I'm glad I bought it.

See my previous posts:
Maybelline ColorSensational Color Whisper
Maybelline ColorSensational Color Whisper Part II

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Coffret D'Or Full Memory Rouge Part II

Having tried the Coffret D'Or Full Memory Rouge in RD-168 Color, I got curious and wanted to know what the Glow version would be like, so I picked up this OR-98 Glow on a whim to fill my cart. This lipstick has been discontinued for a couple of years now, but they're still available on E(vil)bay if you're curious.

All pictures taken in natural light without flash.

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