Dec 31, 2010

Bourjois Ombre Stretch Eyeshadow (Intense Black 01)

For almost 140 years old, Bourjois has been a beauty expert, bringing women their daily dose of “Joie de Vivre.”  Created in 1863 by Alexandre Napoleon Bourjois, the brand always wanted over the years to offer to women modern and qualitative make-up products at accessible prices.

EOTD Bourjois Ombre Stretch Eyeshadow Intense Black
Bourjois Ombre Stretch Coleur Ultra-Extensible/Ultra-Stretchable Colour

This powder eyeshadow can be stretched and blended infinitely, thanks to its remarkable formula enriched with nylon microspheres.  It can be used to create looks that range from subtle to intense - you can have fun experimenting!  Contained within a gorgeous compact case, with panoramic mirror and expert brush - it'll look great in your handbag.

EOTD Bourjois Ombre Stretch Eyeshadow Intense Black

 Cost Rs. 500/2.5 g of product

EOTD Bourjois Ombre Stretch Eyeshadow Intense Black

Brush that comes along with the eyeshadow might not seem the best, but for me, this is definitely quite okay - it definitely is not useless.  Not the best for blending, perhaps.

Snap-shut case.  No danger of accidental opening inside the bag.

EOTD Bourjois Ombre Stretch Eyeshadow Intense Black


EOTD Bourjois Ombre Stretch Eyeshadow Intense Black
EOTD Bourjois Ombre Stretch Eyeshadow Intense Black
On my eyes
Comparison:  Bourjois named this shade "Intense Black." It really is more intense grey.  I have compared it with a matte black eyeshadow from Inglot.

EOTD Bourjois Ombre Stretch Eyeshadow Intense Black
Bourjois Intesense Black - Inglot black matte eyeshadow

Swatch on my fingers:

EOTD Bourjois Ombre Stretch Eyeshadow Intense Black
L - Inglot eyshadow.  R - Bourjois Intense Black
  • There is a good amount of product (2.5 g).
  • The shade is not really intense black - but its a nice colour for those who want a dark grey.
  • The packaging matches the colour of the shadow, so it's easy to pick the shade you want if even if your makeup storage is a mess.
  • Comes with a brush - which might not be the best - it's useful if you are a person like me who doesn't have the "proper" brushes or for travel.
  • The eyshadow tends to fly around a bit, but it's not that bad really.
On the whole, I quite liked this eyeshadow.  This is the first and right now the only Bourjois product I own.  Any recommendation on what else is good from Bourjois?

Check the shades available here.

Dec 30, 2010

Of Stones and Colour

silver stone ear rings ruby jewellery traditional indian cauvery emporium bangalore
Silver and stone earrings from Cauvery Emporium

DIY Trial and errr..Error : Oatmeal-Tomato Mask

Masks using oatmeal and tomato in combination with various other ingredients are very widely (online at least) recommended for dry/blemished skin, but of course, I am too scared to try anything on my face, so I decided to use this as a foot mask!!  I figured if it works as a skin lightening mask for the face, it should work my feet too, and if I get any rashes, at least no one would know :D

The trial:

I blitzed regular Quaker oats to get a coarse powder - about 1 cup.
Pureed 1 small tomato and added.
Added 2 tsps of olive oil.
The mixture was missing a LOT of moisture - so added milk to thin it out.
That's what the final product looked like when I ran out things to add :D

I guess you realized by now that I was well on my way to a total disaster, but I just had to continue.  Applied this generously over both feet, wrapped them in cling wrap, and waited 10 minutes.  Washed off with warm water.  Yes, my feet looked tiny bit brighter, but I don't know if it was just me hoping it was looking brighter. 

And the errors:
  • The bathroom floor looked like someone just threw up.  And no, I could not leave it there for my maid to clean because not only would she come up with her own ideas on why I threw up, she would also give me a piece of her mind and quit.  That's the reason why sensible people don't use this as a foot mask.
  • Just splashing water does not get this off the skin.  You have to keep massaging/rubbing to get this off. Leaving the oats whole or making a very coarse powder would make it easier to wash off.
  • If you have sensitive skin, you might want to skip this.  Tomatoes are acidic and can/may cause irritation to sensitive skins.  But then again, if you just read this post, you might not try it anyway :D :D
  • I would use this on hands - just massage the mixture on hands for a bit and wash off.  And no messy bathroom floors either.

Dec 29, 2010

The Body Shop Almond Oil Nail and Cuticle Treatment

TBS Almond Oil Nail and Cuticle Treatment - portable cuticle pen with brush applicator and lid that functions as a cuticle pusher.  With almond oil and Community Trade organic olive oil to help protect nails from splitting and breaking.  DIY nail spa treatment.

TBS Bodyshop Almond Oil Nail and Cuticle Treatment Pen Reviews Ingredients
This was among the first products I purchased from TBS.  I had never seen a product like this, the packaging and the concept seemed amazing, and so I got it.

How to Use the TBS Almond Oil Nail and Cuticle Treatment Pen

 The brush tip gets automatically coated with oil with rotating the end of the pen.  Use the brush to paint the on to the nail and cuticles and gently ease back the cuticles with the pusher provided at the end of the cap

TBS Bodyshop Almond Oil Nail and Cuticle Treatment Pen Reviews Ingredients
TBS Bodyshop Almond Oil Nail and Cuticle Treatment Pen Reviews Ingredients

TBS Almond Oil Nail and Cuticle Treatment Pen - Ingredients

Prunus amygdalus dulcis (Emollient), Lanolin (Emollient), Glycine soja (Emollient/Skin Conditioner), Olea europaea (Emollient), Triticum vulgare (Emollient), Vitis vinifera (Skin Conditioner), C10-30 Cholesterol/Lanosterol Esters (Skin Conditioning Agent), Cera Alba (Emulsifier/Emollient), Silica Silylate (Skin Conditioning Agent), Cocoyl Hydrolyzed Oat Protein (Skin Conditioning Agent), Tocopheryl Acetate (Antioxidant), Parfum (Fragrance), Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein (Skin Conditioning Agent), Carthamus tinctorius (Emollient), Hexyl Cinnamal (Fragrance Ingredient), Equisetum hiemale (Natural Additive), Panthenol (Skin/Hair Conditioning Agent), Retinyl Palmitate (Skin Conditioning Agent), Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate, 3-Hydroxybenzoic Acid (Skin Conditioning Agent), Linalool

TBS Claims:
  • High levels of sweet almond oil - rich in essential fatty acids, which help to restore the nails and protect against splitting and breaking.
  • Community Trade soya oil from Brazil - to moisturise.
  • Vitamins A & E - to help protect and improve nail condition.

My Experience with the TBS Almond Oil Nail and Cuticle Treatment Pen

I don't know if I just got a faulty pen, but I never got more than 10 days of use from this!  I loved it when it worked, made my nails look healthy, but really, I had paid Rs. 745!!  Is it too much to expect this to last at least a month??!

Cost: Rs. 495/1.8 mL

NO, I will not be buying this again.  Even if it was something wrong with the particular pen that I bought, I think paying so much for 1.8 mL of this product is so not worth it at all.

Similar Products:
ELF Nourishing Avacado and Almond Oil Cuticle Pen 
Lush Lemony Flutter Cuticle Butter 
Burt's Bees Hand Salve
Burt's Bees Almond Milk Beeswax Hand Creme

Complete list of TBS product reviews check here.

Dec 27, 2010

The Body Shop Rainforest Moisture Hair Butter

The Body Shop Rainforest Moisture Hair Butter is a part of the new Rainforest Hair Care range introduced by The Body Shop.  This range, which includes shampoos and conditioners for various hair types, uses products ethically sourced from the Amazon rain forests.  I picked the TBS Rainforest Hair Butter because I have dry hair, and "hair butter" seemed like a made-for-me product.

Tbs bodyshop rainforest moisture hair butter dry conditioner mask reviews ingredients
The TBS Rainforest Moisture Hair Butter is like a deep conditioner.  It contains no silicones, parabens or colourants, and it smells amazing.  I have always had a problem with silicone-containing products like Dove, Pantene even though they are the best for taming my unruly hair.  My scalp does not seem to like them much and gets very itchy.

Tbs bodyshop rainforest moisture hair butter dry conditioner mask reviews ingredients

The product itself is a white cream, somewhat like hair masks from L'Oreal or Dove, if you have tried them.  It's like a thicker version of a conditioner.

Tbs bodyshop rainforest moisture hair butter dry conditioner mask reviews ingredients

How to Use the TBS Rainforest Moisture Hair Butter for Dry Hair

Tbs bodyshop rainforest moisture hair butter dry conditioner mask reviews ingredients

My Experience with the Bodyshop Rainforest Moisture Hair Butter

I tried the recommended 1-2 hazelnut size amount and applied to my hair as instructed.  It didn't do anything for my hair.  It seemed like I had forgotten to put a conditioner AND used a harsh shampoo.  Next, I tried increasing the quantity, but that just adds to the problem.  It leaves some kind of a residue on the hair.  I can increase or decrease the quantity, but all it does is increase or decrease the residue on my hair.  I have found mixed reviews for this product online.  There are many people who claim this is an amazing product and equally loads who claim that it makes their hair feel like they rubbed candle wax through it.  I come in the latter category.  I give this the benefit of doubt, but I would not be repurchasing.  I am planning to pass on testers to unsuspecting victims (friend, mom, sister), and hopefully this work for someone.

TBS Rainforest Moisture Hair Butter For Dry Hair (available here) - Cost:  Rs. 695/200 mL ($14)

TBS Rainforest Moisture Hair Butter - Ingredients

Tbs bodyshop rainforest moisture hair butter dry conditioner mask reviews ingredients

Related Posts:
The Body Shop Rainforest Radiance Shampoo for colored hair
Burt's Bees Super Shiny Grapefruit and Sugar Beet Shampoo and Conditioner
Herbal Essences Hello Hydration Moisturizing Shampoo and Conditioner

Dec 25, 2010

Ponds Flawless White Vitamin Soak Lightening Mask

Ponds Flawless White Vitamin Soak Lightening Mask Review

Sheet masks are my favorites because they are the easiest to use.  No mess to clean :D  Ponds masks come as a pack of 5 in a box - you have to buy the entire box - they are not sold individually.  You can always share/split it with someone, though (I share it with my friend sometimes).

Ponds Flawless White Vitamin Soak Lightening Mask Review

Each sachet has 1 mask which is soaked in lotion.  Tear open the sachet, open the mask carefully, place it over face and smooth out any creases to ensure that the mask touches the skin evenly.  Leave for 10 minutes.  Remove and discard the mask.  Massage any excess lotion into the face.

Ponds Flawless White Vitamin Soak Lightening Mask Review
Be careful while opening the mask because it's very wet and hence easy to tear
And the opened mask :)

Ponds Flawless White Vitamin Soak Lightening Mask Review

Ingredients and Instruction on Use:

Ponds Flawless White Vitamin Soak Lightening Mask Review

I use these very rarely, so I am not sure how "fair" I would get if I used it 2-3 times a week.  One time use leaves my skin look fresher and brighter.  I did not have any burning/irritation with this mask.  I have used this in summers, and I found it a bit..very tiny bit prone to making my skin oily. However, now that it's so dry and cold, it's not at all oily.  I follow this with my regular moisturizer.

Cost:  Rs. 549/5 masks.

Similar product:  Neutrogena Fine Fairness Deep Whitening Mask.

Dec 24, 2010

Lush Sweet Lips Lip Scrub

Lush Sweet Lips Scrub with Vanilla and chocolate sugar

Lush Sweet Lips Scrub Reviews Ingredients blog

To Use:  Moisten lips.  Just take a small amount and scrub lips softly - wash off - easiest way to softer lips.  Follow up with a lip balm.


Lush Sweet Lips Scrub Reviews Ingredients blog

The Good
  • Smells amazing - I just want to eat it up, keep it at my desk and sniff it a million times a day.
  • Leaves my lips super smooth, but I do have to use a lip balm if I want to maintain the smoothness.
Lush Sweet Lips Scrub Reviews Ingredients blog

The Not-so-good:  The jar packaging is very cute, and I love it, but it's not practical to use it just about everywhere - fingers get messy with the sugar particles.  It might not be the most hygienic packaging either, but I always carry a hand sanitizer/wipes, so I don't bother too much about this.

Lush Sweet Lips Scrub available here - Cost:  $8.95 (  (Rs. 575/25 g in India)

Yes, I know it's an expensive sugar scrub for the lips, but if you find yourself in a Lush store any time, do check this out :)

Similar Posts:
Lush Lip Balm - Lip Service and Whipstick
Super Soft Lips the Body Shop way - TBS Lipscuff and Lip Care (01 Translucent)

Quick Fix Foot Spa

How to:  Massage the feet with any inexpensive cream - I use Nivea - should be heavy/greasy.  Wrap it in a warm, moist towel for about 10 minutes.

Hot towel - two ways
  • Soak a towel in water, wring out as much water as you can out of it, microwave the towel for about 20 seconds - do not ever put a dry towel in the microwave.  I have never tried this method :D 
  • Dip towel in hot water.  Wring out as much water as you can out of the towel.  Use the hot towel.
And there you have it, the easiest way to happy feet this winter!

Dec 23, 2010

What-was-I-thinking-when-I-bought-these Products :D

I am quite a Lush addict, have tried most of their products at least once, and I must have suggested at least one Lush product to everyone who asked me (or didn't in some cases).  It so happens that there is Lush even in my "waste of money" list :D

Disclaimer:  These didn't work for me.  They might work for someone else - this is just my experience with the product.

Lush Colour supplements (reviewed here)

This is marketed as a foundation/tinted moisturizer/concealer, use it anyway you want to kind of product by Lush, but the concept didn't translate all that well when tested.  Vanishes in about an hour or two and leaves my face oily.

Lush Colour Supplements Tinted Foundation Moustirizer Saving Face Serum Bar

Lush Saving Face Serum Bar reviewed here.

Max Factor Vibrant Curve Effect Lipgloss (review here)

Maxfactor vibrant curve effect lip gloss artistic 16

The only reason I do not like this and do not use this is I hate it's strange taste/smell.  I did not try it on my lips at the counter - just swatched it on and bought it.  Only when I reached home and tried, I found out about this awful smell/taste.  I do not know if it's just the one I got - something wrong with it (?) - any ideas anyone??

Kaya Daily Use Sunscreen Lotion (review here)

kaya skin clinic daily use sunscreen spf 15 face lotion moisturizer

I don't even know why I bought this.  Had gone to the Kaya Clinic to try one of their treatments, saw this, bought it.  I start getting pimples about a week after I started using this.  Stop using this, and they disappear.  It seemed like a nice product, otherwise.

Lush Shampoo Bar - Godiva (review here)

Lush Godiva Solid Shampoo conditioner Bar

Claims to be a shampoo-and-conditioner combo bar.  It left my hair dry and dull.

NYX Liquid Eye Liner (review here)

NYX Liquid Dark Brown Eyeliner

Over-priced, useless eyeliner.  While NYX is quite cheap abroad in India it can be a bit expensive, and for that price you can buy Lakme or anything cheaper.  Go eat an ice cream with the money you save :D

Clean and Clear Deep Action Cleanser - (review here)

Clean and Clear Deep Action Cleanser Face Wash

A face wash that miraculously strips off all the oil from the face, but leaves all the dirt intact!  How do they make such fascinating products?  Only saving grace - it's inexpensive - and if you think it might work for you, you can easily try it out - plus it is available in smaller sizes.

Dec 22, 2010

DIY Happiness: Coffee-Sugar Body Scrub

How-To:  DIY Coffee-Sugar Body Scrub

how make home diy coffee sugar body scrub ingredients use
Coffee-Sugar Body Scrub
Do you have a pattern to your shopping? I have - I get money, I go shop.  And I want to shop all the time.  In an ideal world, yes, that's what would happen. However, in a world where freebies means "Buy a tyre, get onions free*," the little money I earn doesn't last for month-long spending sprees, and by the end of the month, I am left staring at the various "haul posts" on other blogs. For all those who are just like me, this coffee-sugar scrub is sure to make you feel pampered, and you won't have to worry about the wallet.  You can make do with items from your kitchen, and this is definitely cheaper than Lush :)

DIY Coffee-Sugar Body Scrub - Ingredients

how make home diy coffee sugar body scrub ingredients use
DIY Coffee-Sugar Body Scrub - Ingredients
1/3 cup sugar - Since the sugar that we get in India is quite granular, I just blitz in the mixer along with the cinnamon bits to get a powder.
A bit of cinnamon - I just used two tiny pieces - or you could use a dash of cinnamon powder. You can also add nutmeg - I didn't, too lazy.
Coffee powder - 1 tablespoon. Do not use instant coffee powder for this - use the powder you would use in your coffee filter or just use the coffee-grounds after you are done with making your coffee.
Olive oil - I didn't measure this. Use enough to just wet the powders to a wet sand consistency.

I put this in a better-looking bowl for the "pic-taking," but it was such a pain to mix in a small bowl. I would suggest you take a bigger bowl, put the powders in, and add the oil little by little till you just wet the powders - should be like the wet sand. Use the least amount of oil required to get this consistency. Mixing with fingers instead of a spoon is so much faster.

how make home diy coffee sugar body scrub ingredients use
DIY Coffee-Sugar Body Scrub - Ingredients

This made enough scrub for me to use about 3 times, and I store this in an air-tight container and take the amount I need for a one-time use separately. It doesn't have any preservatives, so use it up soon.  I never keep it for longer than a week, and I doubt it would last longer than that.

how make home diy coffee sugar body scrub ingredients use
Use scrub to post fake ice cream pics when people post "haul posts" :D

How to use the Coffee-Sugar Body Scrub

After your bath, use the scrub over damp skin, concentrating on the rough bits like elbows. Rinse off with warm water. Pat dry. Coffee is supposed to be great at reducing cellulite, so this scrub is specially recommended for Jomol who loves her posterior :D :D :D :D :D What I love about this is the coffee smell.

The bathroom can get slippery after using this, so please take care. I never use this on my feet - would use it separately when I am safely sitting somewhere and not likely to slip and fall as I try to walk around.

Perfect for the dry, cold climate in Bangalore, and the smell of coffee really wakes me up. It does get a little greasy, which is why I suggested using the least amount of oil required. Rinsing off with really warm water helps take off some of the excess oil as well as helping the skin aborb the oil better. I have used olive oil, but you could use just about any oil that you like. I wanted to know if there are any other non-smelling oils that I could use for this. Any recommendations?

* Thank you, Priya, for today's amazing news :D

Dec 21, 2010

All things Good - Skincare

I try more skincare products than makeup, but unlike makeup, I cannot try my luck with any brand/any product when it comes to my skin.  I have combination-oily skin, prone to break-outs easily, and reacts to products faster than the normal average - reacts badly, that is!  All that means, I tend to play safe and stick to products that I find work for me.  I am still searching for the ideal shampoo-conditioner combo, but I think I am on my way to finding my ideal Cleanse-Tone-Moisturize package.

These are some of the skincare products I tried and loved/found interesting through the year.  I have only listed the ones I have reviewed.  Click on the names for review/more info.

Shiseido The Skincare Extra Gentle Cleansing Foam

I got Shiseido The Skincare Extra Gentle Cleansing Foam as a sample.  I never did buy the full-size version of this because I kept trying out other brands to review.  This is the best soap-based cleanser I have tried - EVER.  It's just a regular face wash, and I always thought that any facewash is okay - how much difference can it make? This made my skin squeaky clean but never dry or stretched or tight, yet it was never oily, and there was no residue on my face.  Another plus point with the Shiseido Skincare Extra Gentle Cleansing Foam is that I need lesser product than the usual face washes.

Shiseido The Skincare Extra Gentle Cleansing Foam Mousse Face Wash Reviews Ingredients Nettoyante Ultra-Douce

Kama Mridul Soap-Free Cleanser

The best soap-free cleanser, I think.  I use the Kama Mridul Soap-Free Cleanser as a mild, daily scrub that I use after washing my face first with a gentle soap-based cleanser.  The Kama Mridul Cleanser gives super smooth, soft skin, does not dry the skin, but does not make it oily either.  It did not look there was a lot of product in the cute small steel container it was packed in, but I have been using this regularly for a long time now, and I am nowhere near finishing the product.

Kama Ayurveda Mridul Gentle Facial Cleanser Scrub Reviews Ingredients

Clinique Clarifying Lotion 2

My pick for a toner for summers/days when my skin is just its usual oily-confused state, the Clinique Clarifying Lotion 2 is an alcohol-based toner.  I was in a no-alcohol-in-skincare phase, and I would ideally prefer to have great skin with no alcohol, but that's not happening and I have learned to compromise :) The Clarifying Lotion has also been great at getting rid of the permanent-resident blackheads, so you could use it just on the T-zone, blackhead/acne-prone areas.

clinique clarifying lotion type 2 skin toner reviews ingredients oily alcohol

Shiseido The Skincare Hydro-balancing Softener

A softener, unlike a toner, works to dampen your skin and allows the moisturizer to soak in better.  That's how Shiseido The Skincare Hydrobalancing Softener works.  It's a cleanser-toner/softener-moisturizer.  I use this on days when my skin feels dry and stretchy.  I live in Bangalore, and we have days when its gets very dry and cold, generally around winter time.  Blessed as I am with combination skin, it means that I start to get a parched-dry feeling on my cheeks and forehead.  I skip a toner, and switch over to a softener on such days.  This is alcohol-free.

Shiseido Skincare Hydrobalancing Softener Skin reviews ingredients Alcohol Free Dry Normal skin

Shiseido Pureness Mattifying Moisturizer

This is my HG moisturizer for the summers.  I will never ever try anything else until I get old enough for my skin to move into the dry-mature category.  The Shiseido Pureness Mattifying Moisturizer works great for my skin, moisturizes my skin, but has absolutely no oil.  It also has a very fine mattifying powder in it that soaks up any extra oiliness.  Though this mattifying moisturizer is a better product for summer than winters, using this with a nourishing softener balances things out.

shiseido pureness oil free mattifying powder moisturizer oily skin reviews ingredients

Neutrogena Fine Fairness Deep Whitening Mask

The Neutrogena Fine Fairness Deep Whitening mask is the first sheet mask I tried, and I love how easy it is to use.  Just open the sheet and spread over face, wait for 10-15 minutes or as per directions on the package, take off and massage any residual product into the skin.  I did not buy this for "getting fairer skin" was hoping it would work on blemishes on my face.  It does brighten the skin but no "skin whitening" effect.  It has a slight drying effect on my skin, but I have oily skin so that's a plus point for me.

Neutrogena Fine Fairness Skin Deep Whitening Sheet Face Mask Reviews Ingredients

Himalaya Herbals Almond and Cucumber Peel-Off Mask

It's a peel-off face mask, so of course I love it :D  That apart, the Himalaya Herbals Almond and Cucumber Peel-Off Mask actually made my skin look fresher and cleaner.  It's inexpensive and easily available.  What's not to like about this one?!!

Himalaya Herbals Almond Cucumber Peel Off Face Mask Skin Ingredients Reviews

Lush Dream Cream

Quite unlike my face, the rest of my body has really dry and sensitive skin.  I love using heavy, greasy body butters from Lush and TBS, but the Dream Cream moisturizer is my absolute favorite.  Meant for dry-itchy skins, it has a bit of a herbal smell and is filled with soothing oils to calm the skin.  Unlike the usual Lush products, the perfume/fragrance is very toned down because it's meant for sensitive skins.  I like Dream Cream because though it is a light moisturizer and can be used in summers, it's moisturizing enough for the dry winter days here.  Lush Dream Cream is also my facial moisturizer for the winters.

Lush Dream Cream Body Lotion Moisturizer Dry Sensitive Itchy Eczema Skin Reviews Ingredients