Monday, June 28, 2010

Review: Clarins Moisture Replenishing Lip Balm

There is nothing in the world that i hate and fear most other than breakouts, it has to be dry and chapped lips.
Well, why is that so?

Let me count thee ways:
1. The skin on our lips are the thinnest and most fragile yet its one of the most neglected areas on our body.
2. There is no cosmetic surgery (not any that i know of) that can reverse or repair any aging or damage done to the lips, so what's done is done and that's that.
3. Dry and chapped lips can crack and bleeds plus its painful (and i had to have the "fortune"of suffering from that once and once is more than enough).

I used to be satified with my trusty stick lipbalm, but ever since my encounter with Clarins Moisture Replenishing Lip balm, i would say i am expecting more from my old trusty lip balm. Clarins Lip balm not only performed its job of soothing my dry lips well, it is able to soften them almost instantaneously and revive it with a slightly pinkish tone.

15 ml worth of lip balm is enough to last me almost 4 to 5 months with daily usage

The "toothpaste" way of dispensing the lip balm makes it hassle free and more hygienic

The slight pinkish tone is due to one of the active ingredients, Rose Wax

Packaging-wise, i find the tube convenience and hygienic, there body of the tube is of soft plastic so you only dispense the amount you need, plus there is no need for me to dig my fingers into (unlike some other lip balms in pots). The slant shaped opening makes the application a no-brainer. A little fuss-free package, really! A score in my book.

Texture-wise, the lip balm is a little waxy but not sticky, it resembles a little like lip gloss but slightly thicker. Like all lip balms, apply as required, so i don't really mind about that.

Scent-wise, like majority of Clarins' s products, it is scented but very lightly. You can't even detect the scent if you are not observant enough. I happened to lick it off my lips once, hm... not much of a taste here, which is jolly well fine (its not like we are eating lip balms as a main course anyway).

Hm... well, i like it.

It gives me a light pink sheen on my lips and it does its jobs well ,way better than the dozens that i have tried ( i used to be a lippie collector and area of specialisation is lip balms : )).

I say, it deserves a place in my HG stash. : )

Priced at S$36.00 for 15ml.

Main Ingredients: Mineral oil, Diisostearyl Malate, Hydrogenated Styrene, Microcrystalline wax, Ozokerite, Butyrospermum ParkII, Paraffin, Polythylene, Ricinus Communis Seed Oil, Capric Triglyceride, Nylon-12, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Rosa Centifolia Flower Wax and Rosa Damascena Flower Wax.

Review: Clarins Aqua Essence Morning Energy and Evening Infusion

If there is one thing that i can curb my morning grouchiness... apart from my pure black coffee (my daily dosage of caffine), it would have to be the Aqua Essence Morning Energy from Clarins (coincidentally green coffee is one of the active ingredients : ) ).
So, twice the caffine dosage, that should prep me up, right ? : )
I have done a rather detailed write up on the Aqua Essence Morning Energy much earlier, see , this time round i will discuss more on the Evening Infusion.
Top: Aqua Essence Morning Energy, Bottom: Aqua Essence Evening Infusion
A Closer look through the frosty glass bottles

Amount of Morning Energy left in the bottle after approx. 2 months daily usage

Brand new bottle of Evening Infusion

The evening Infusion is the exact opposite of its counterpart- the morning energy. It seeks to "de-stress"our skin after a day's work and exposure to harsh conditions such as air pollution and stress, the essence aims to refresh the tired face and at the same time strengthen plus moisturising the skin.

In short, its more of a comforting lotion to prepare your skin for your daily night time skincare regime. I don't usually take the product description at full value for alot of products that i have used and reviewed in my blog, i would take it with a pinch of salt and prefer to test it out for myself to see if it is indeed the miracle worker that it claims to be. Afterall, there are too many products out there that over promised on things.

Packaging-wise, it comes in a frosted glass bottle with spray that dispenses a modest amount each time, which is good as it is easily to get carried away and use up more than what is required each time i use it. The heavy glass bottle is a nice touch, i would say, it sort of sends out the subtle message that it is a luxurious product (which it is, looking at the price).

Texture-wise, the essence is watery, it spreads nicely across the palms and is easily absorbed into the skin (according to the little booklet enclosed, the effect would be better if application is done using the Clarins Auto-lifting method).

There is a slight flowery fragrance initially, not overpowering, which i quite like. It sort of fades away moments after the essence is fully absorbed by the skin. I have been using it for a month, so far so good. My skin felt slightly smoother and softer after the application but i don't really see any brightening or radiance coming through (maybe i need to use it for a longer period for visible results to show up).

If there is a duo that i can't live without, it would have to be the Clarins Aqua Essence for Morning and Evening. Both lotions compliment each other quite well and are more of a good-to-have type of products but they are a must for me when i have the extra cash to splurge or stock it up whenever a sale is going on.

A potential HG material in the making.

Priced at S$65.00 each for 100ml, which should be sufficient to last at least a good 4 months with daily usage.

Main Ingredients for Morning Essence: ........ I threw away the cardboard packaging before i recalled that i have not input the listing for main ingredients yet....but the active ingredients are Redcurrant, Green Coffee and White Tea Extracts.

Main Ingredients for Evening Infusion: Aqua, Alcohol, Pentylene Glycol, Glycerin, Butylene Glycol, Trehalose, PPG-26-Buteth-26, Fragrance, Tromethamine, Acrylates, PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Benzophenone-4, Solanium Lycopersicum (tomato) fruit extract, Phytic Acid, Phenoxyethanol, Passiflora Incarnata Flower Extract and Prunus Yedoensis Leaf Extract.

Active Ingredients for Evening Infusion: Cherry Tree, Passionflower, Roman Camomile and Linden Extracts.

Review: Christian Dior Cannage Color Collection Eye Palette

I have always been wanting to own a Christian Dior Eye palette, especially having read raves on their silky smooth texture and good color payoffs. The higher end price point is one of the main factor that is stopping me from trying it out for myself (even though the swatches that i did at Dior's counter managed to tempt me quite a few times).

Thanks to my sister, who is a frequent traveler, she managed to snag a Dior palette from the Cannage Color Collection at an irresistable price of S$69 for 8 eye colors and 2 double end applicators. This palette is a Krisflyer exclusive, meaning it will not be released to the Dior counters in town.

Krisflyer Exclusive @ S$69.oo

Purple patent leather with Signature Cannage stitching

Colors that are versatile for day and night

A closer look at the colors

Swatches from bottom row left to right then top row left to right (no flash)

Swatches from bottom row left to right then top row left to right (with flash)

I am not too sure of Dior's color numbering, according to the label at the back of the palette, the palette is made up of the following colors:

1. 3 Eyeshadows from 1 couleur - 965 - 005 - 515
2. 3 Eyeshadows from Couleurs Iridescent - 929 - 822 - 682
3. 2 Eyeshadows from 5 Couleurs - 096 - 194

The eye colors swatches beautifully and Dior's eye colors truly live up to its name/rave from the reviews in various forums. I can foresee myself succumbing to the temptation of future Dior eye palettes release.

Main Ingredients: Talc, Mica, Octyldodecyl Stearoyl Stearate, Nylon-12, Silica, Magnesium Stearate, Dimethicone, Phenoxyethanol, Calcium Aluminum Borosilicate, Synthetic Fluorphlogopite, Pentaerythrityl Tetraisostearate, Bis-Behenyl/Isostearyl/Phytosteryl Dimer Dilinoleyl Dimer Dilinoleate, Triethoxycaprylysilane, Tocopherol.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Review: Clarins Gentle Foaming Cleanser for Normal and Combination Skin

I have come quite a long way for facial cleansers... somehow or rather i am particularly particular (pun intended here : ) ) about it, especially nowadays facial cleansers are claimed to be able to perform certain special functions apart from solely cleansing the skin, such as purifying, whitening, hydrating, anti-aging... etc, etc, etc.
I simply can't fathom how just 1 cleanser is able to be so omnipotent, its simply beyond me or maybe its just me being old-fashioned.

For me, personally i would prefer my cleanser to be able to just perform its main function of "cleaning up the skin", that should be sufficient and the it should just leave the many other complicated high-level functions to its counterparts like the serum, lotion, eye cream... otherwise isn't it 1 cleanser to rule them all? The rest of its "family"would deemed to be redundant?

By being able to perform its main function alone effectively and efficiently is basically what i always look for in a cleanser. Effective in getting rid of grimes and excess oil on the skin without stripping away the natural oil and drying it in the process, and efficient in just using perhaps a tiny tea spatula to do its job.

Now, how's that going to be difficult.. well its not THAt difficult a task but as time goes by you will definitely find one such cleanser that is part of your HG stash, of course that is after countless quests or tubes and bottles that you have went through.

Today, i am going to talk about mine -Clarins's gentle foaming cleanser with cottonseed for the normal or combination skin type.

Packaging-wise, the cleanser comes in tube form, which is easy to maneuver in the bathroom but personally i very much prefer my skincare stuffs to come with pumps to dispense the product, this is partly due to hygiene reason too. I find that water tends to slip into the tube whenever i pulled the cap in and out, the product just seems slightly different after a while (i am rather anal when it comes to that).

Texture-wise, it is very lightweight, a little like that of cleansing milk but a wee thicker. It foams without much effort when mixed with water, very little foam is produced, just the right amount to cover my entire face and neck. I don't really have any issues with having my skincare products scented, in fact i like mine to smell good and subtle. In this case, the cleanser has a subtle "clean" fragrance that is quite common in some of Clarins's products.

During the processing of lathering, massaging it during cleansing and rinsing off the foams, there is no tingling or any irritating sensation, skin feels normal and this continues even moments after showering, there isn't a hint of tightness or roughness detected.

After that, i followed up with a facial cotton pad loaded with non-alcohol toner to swipe my face and neck, there is no visible trace of dirt left on the cotton (i wear makeup base and loose powder whenever i am in a rush, which is most of the time).

According to Clarins, it contains the active ingredients below:

1.Katafray Bark Extract - helps to prevent moisture loss of skin

2. Tamarind Fruit Acid - get rids of dry skin cells that clog pores

3. Shea Butter - protects, nourishes and regenerates the skin

4. Gypsophila Extract - produces a fine, lightweight and gentle foam

5. Polymnia - helps in balancing the natural pH level of skin (think its around 4.5 to 5.5)

6. Cottonseed - to leave skin soft and smooth


I have been using the same tube of cleanser for almost 4 months, so far so good. This lightweight cleanser has the capability to perform its designated duities well and that is definitely a YES in my book. Give it a try if you do not have any allergy related to Dimethicone.

However, i have yet to test drive it to on my face with foundation yet, but based on the above, i would say a yes to my upcoming 2nd tube. My only gripes are the tube packaging and the slightly steep price tag.

Priced at S$40.00 for 125ml.

Main Ingredients: Aqua/water, Glycerin, Stearic Acid, Myristic Acid, Potassium Hydroxide, Dimethicone, Lauric Acid, Sodium Lauroyl Sarcosinate, Tipa-Laureth Sulfate, Glyceryl Behenate, Glycol Distearate, Ozokerite, Fragrance, Propylene Glycol, Tetrasodium Edta, Alpha-Glucan Oligosaccharide.

Interesting Fact: Dimethicone is silicone oil and its chemical name is Polydimethylsiloxane. It is derived from silica, is widely used in many cosmetic, skincare and haircare products, it serves as an anti-foaming agent, an emollient in personal bodycare products.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Elizabeth Arden Warehouse Sale Haul

This is the first time i have hauled something from Elizabeth Arden, especially since it wasn't part of my hauling plan at all. When it comes to Elizabeth Arden, i always have this image deeply embedded in my mind - EA's products are meant for mature ladies. It could be largely due to my mom's frequently visit to the EA counter at OG... childhood memories.
However, having read promising reviews for EA's products such as the Eight hour cream and the White Glove series, thanks to Christy from Beaute Runway, i couldn't help but decided to drop by the sale venue since i am already at Suntec with my siblings for the IT fair.
There are quite a few perfume cofferts on sales, such as the Mediterranean Eau de Parfum sets (2 sets available- one with body lotion and the other with both the body wash and lotion), 5th Avenue set (with body lotion) and the Red Door Eau de Parfum set (with body lotion). I do not recall seeing any other fragrances on sale under the EA name, such as celebrities inspired fragrances (eg. Curious Britney Spears and Mariah Carey's) or any other. Nevertheless, they were a steal at almost 50% off the usual retail price for the sets sold in departmental stores.
Skincare-wise, there's only one Ceramide Gold Capsules Set and one White Glove Skin Brightening set and some other items from the White Glove range on sale. I wasn't putting too much hope in spotting the Eight Hour cream series or any of their Bestselling series there as they are doing well at the counters in departmental stores.
As for Makeup items, there are some Flawless Finish Mousse makeup, pressed powder, eye colors, lip glosses, lipsticks, cream blushers, bronzing powder and a makeup value set on sale, the colors are rather limited, so i skipped that totally.
A point to note, the manufacturing dates of most of the items on sale are in 2008 and some 2009. I would suggest using the products immediately or not within this year if you are really bent on trying some of the items.
I went home and did some research on their official website and turns out i was quite wrong on the idea that EA is for mature women only, the skincare line is rather diversified.
Elizabeth Arden's extensive skincare line includes:

1.PREVAGE- A collaboration of EA with a dermatological research company, Allergan for high performance anti-aging products which address the impact of oxidation, the main culprit of signs of skin aging. This is the line that they are promoting and advertising agressively.

2.Ceramide- A line that targets at plumping, firming , strengthening, retexturising and maintaining the skin's moisture.

3. Eight Hour Cream- A basic skincare range that aims to resolve dryness of skin and minor skin irritation.

4. INTERVENE- A pre-antiaging line that targets at women in their late 20s or early 30s who are being to see the signs of aging, such as dullness and dryness. Sounds more of a preventive anti-aging line to me.

5. Visible Difference- A rich formula that aims to protect skin with retaining and preventing moisture loss plus reducing of fine lines. I gather this is in general for gals with dry skin.

6. Millenium Skincare- An intensely moisturising line to revitalise skin for a firmer and more radiant look.

7. Perpetual Moisture 24- A hydration line that helps prevent moisture loss by infiltrating moisture deep beyond the skin's surface.

8. White Glove- A whitening range that aims to illuminate the skin from within, supposed to defend the skin from its enviromental pollution, control melanin production, lift and smoothen skin. I don't see this range listed anywhere on EA's homepage, this could very well be an Asian exclusive, i'm not too sure about it.

My haul of the day: The White Glove Whitening set and Eye cream

Total Damage: S$85.00

On sale at S$60 (set includes a full size UV Defense Lotion SPF 45, Deluxe travel size Returizing Lotion, Purifying Cleanser, and Balancing Toner)

Eye cream at S$25 (retail price: S$80 plus, i was told by the SA and yes its true)

Texture of the Eye cream seems slightly heavy but is actually light upon application.

Review of Eye cream 2 weeks later:
I have tried on the Eye cream for 2 weeks every day and night, i would say it sits comfortably on my eye area. A good deal if you ask me, as i would never forked out S$80 plus to "try" something that i am quite resistance against initially. I have not tried out the whitening set yet, will do so soon.
I am not promoting consumerism here, but if you can try something and discovering something that 1 day might become your HG stash at a fraction of the retail price, I see absolutely no wrong but all the rights here.
Hope my 2 cents worth are useful here.