Thursday, March 21, 2013

Sephora: Disney Jasmine collection review (The Palace Jewel compact mirror)

Continuing my review of Sephora's latest Disney princess inspired line, I come to the compact mirror called, "The Palace Jewel."

(The Palace Jewel compact mirror and its packaging)

It's a very beautiful compact!  It has a very old world Arabian feel to it which I love.  This mirror is pretty heavy but I see that as a good thing.  It has beautiful golden designs throughout the front and two lamps in the center.  The palace is behind the golden designs and although it's hard to see, there's something written in Persian around it.  Inside the mirror, it says "Shut your eyes and take a chance."  Top mirror is normal while the bottom is a magnifying one (good for plucking eyebrows).  The compact itself has a very sturdy design and I really like how it has a button to push instead of having to push two platforms apart like some cheaper mirrors.

I ended up buying two of them: one for my purse and one for collecting purposes.  I tried to order it through the Sephora website earlier in the month but they were sold out (THANK YOU, RESELLERS).  Thankfully, Sephora had them for sale at their physical stores a few weeks later.  So if you're trying to buy it through the online store and the "sold out" red text is making you sad, I suggest you head to a Sephora store as soon as possible.  These sell out quite quick!!  Go to a Sephora store near you now to get yours!  You won't be disappointed!

As for carrying this compact in your purse, I highly recommend buying a silk pouch and keeping it inside of that.  This way your compact will remain beautiful and won't get scratches!  That's what I'm doing for mine.  It really does look and feel like a compact fitted for a princess.  This thing's a keeper!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Sephora: Disney Jasmine collection review (perfume)

It's spring so it's time for a new limited edition Disney princess inspired line by Sephora!  Sephora and Disney are working together to make cosmetic lines inspired by the Disney princesses and what's in right now is Princess Jasmine.  Last fall, it was Cinderella so I wonder how many of these are there going to be?  (I hope they do my most favorite character, Megara but they probably won't *sniff*)  The line includes a perfumed body shimmer, eyeliner set, perfume oil rollerball, eyeshadow pallet, mini eyeshadow pallet, compact mirror, and perfume.

I bought the perfume online through the Sephora website on a blind jump.  The notes sounded nice and Jasmine is one of my favorite characters so I went, "Why not?" and bought it.

(The bottle)

(Front of the box)

(Side of the box)

The fragrance is named "A Whole New World."  The perfume bottle itself is pretty small.  It only comes in one size which is 1.7oz and costs $58.  Pretty pricey... this is the amount of money I pay for a designer fragrance in a larger size.  That struck me as kinda odd but meh.  The perfumes notes are: Carnation, Orange Blossom, Mandarin, Gardenia, Mimosa, Musky Accord, Cedarwood, Sandalwood, Vanilla, Amber, Benzoin.

I thought this would have a fresher scent since it's almost nothing but flowers.  It's better for special evening occasions rather than daytime wear.  My opinion?  I do not like it!  This is the first time I've ever bought a perfume this expensive on a blind buy and regret it.  The smell is kinda strong, not something I imagined Princess Jasmine to smell like.  The "spicy" and wood notes just plain stink.  It's not an overpowering stink, but it still stinks.  It really doesn't smell that exotic to me... nothing I'd imagine an Arabian princess to smell like.  Don't get me wrong, it's not a terrible scent but I just don't feel like a princess while wearing it.  Thankfully, Sephora gave me free shipping on this purchase and it was free to ship it back.  It was returned.

Final rating: 3/5, average

Monday, March 4, 2013

Cosmetic review: Forever Flawless diamond powder facial treatments

Several months ago, I went to Primm, Nevada for a little "stay-cation" as it were.  Inside the shopping mall housed by one of the 3 Primm Valley casinos, there's this kiosk selling products by the brand "Forever Flawless."  The salesman was trying to sell it to me for an extortionate price of $179 (before tax) claiming that this was a deal since it goes for $300 elsewhere.  I pretty much said, "Yeah, no" then proceeded to talk into the Coach store.  I walked back out and the salesman tried making another pitch to me.  I told him flat out that I couldn't afford to pay that much money for some product that I never heard of.  I was very firm about this.  He lowered the price down to $50 and I decided to go on and buy it although that's still pretty high for a product I've never heard of.

Forever Flawless is advertised as being a luxury brand of beauty products that contain diamond powder and 24K gold.  They also contain botanicals and multivitamins that are supposed to be good for your skin.  They claim that the gold and diamond powder that this stuff contains is supposed to fight against aging but time will only tell.  Worst thing about this stuff is that it has no satisfaction guarantee which should be a huge red flag not to buy this shit.  I didn't find this out until a while after I bought this and did an internet search.

Now, the guy selling this pot of diamond infused gelatin to me said it'd help do things like get rid of acne, unclog pores, and eliminate blackheads.  I guess I ended up being a sucker since I was quite depressed and ended up buying it.  I wanted to improve my skin's condition so I was a pretty easy sale.  Ugh.  Let me tell you this right now... this product is shit.  SHIT.  SHIT!  I'm not even kidding here.  I bought this in hopes of it being able to cleanse my skin by peeling away all the icky dead skin cells.  It does an extremely piss poor job.

I used this stuff for about a month and saw no difference in my acne as I was still getting breakouts.  Wasn't this stuff supposed to help unclog my pores?  This stuff can't unclog a stuffed nose.  The quality of this product is pretty terrible.  It takes at least 2 uses back to back within minutes to get the dead skin off my face.  The directions on the website give you these instructions: "Over clean skin, massage in circular motions until desired exfoliation is achieved. Rinse with warm water. Use 1-2 times a week."  Either way, I don't think they meant having to use it twice in one sitting once a week.  It didn't get all the dead skin on my face so I deem this stuff to be a waste of my $50.  There's probably a reason why many people have not heard of this brand and it's probably because it's not FDA approved.  Not to mention that this crap burned my face.  There's nothing more attractive than glaring rashes on your face, am I right?  It's very much a scam.

If you're looking for a product that will buff away all your dead skin cells, help reduce the dark marks on your face, and reverse aging?  Get yourself a good microdermabrasion kit such as Susan Lucci's "Youthful Essence."  It's only $60 and the 3 month supply of refills only cost you $30.  Not only does it work, it costs a lot less than this Forever Flawless scam shit!

August 13th, 2013--UPDATE:  If you would like to read my follow-up to this, including my scientific explanation behind why these lousy products don't work, click here to see the blog entry.

Because basic reading comprehension doesn't work for everyone, let me paraphrase this entry in a few sentences.  Sellers pull people aside to make a super pushy sale, LIE TO PEOPLE SAYING IT'LL HELP TREAT THEIR ACNE JUST TO GET THEIR MONEY.  Long story short, if the sales people had actually you know... been honest with people, I'm 100% sure that no one would've bought this hoping it'd treat their skin conditions.  And if a product is so fucking good then why in the HELL do the sales people feel the need to lie about it!?

Edit: January 12th, 2014--UPDATE: Thanks to two very informed readers in the comments, I have more information to share with you all:

  • Use this website to report any illegal business (such as Forever Flawless).  Forever Flawless uses illegal undocumented Isralei workers to push their products.  These people are paid under the table and their lodging is taken out of their earnings which is highly illegal.  REPORT THEM.
  • If you're concerned about safe cosmetics, check this out as it's a very good read.  Highly recommended!
  • Most importantly, check this site out.  It's a very informative page about nanomedicine and why diamond powder is dangerous!  It furthers my theory that Forever Flawless lies about what goes into their products and explains to you why using diamond powder will do more harm than good to your body.
Edit: September 8th, 2014

A reader has informed me that a TV program in the Netherlands ran a segment exposing the Forever Flawless scam!  These guys are still at it which is appalling.  If you'd like to read it, check it out here.  There is also a video, but you need to understand Dutch.  The link has the English interview though!

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Perfume review: Curious by Elizabeth Arden fragrances

As many of my friends know, I am a perfume collector.  Back in 2005, I started my collection with a bottle of Estee Lauder's Beyond Paradise.  Jump forward one year to 2006 where I bought Cruious and Curious In Control by Elizabeth Arden (you know, that line of fragrances that Britney Spears lent her image to).

I bought a 3.4oz. bottle of Curious by Elizabeth Arden.  At first, I hated it since it didn't really smell like anything special to me and eventually I kept testing out the tester at work and bought it for myself.  I grew to love this scent.  It comes in a very cute bottle too which doesn't hurt much!  It's a fragrance that I would suggest for daytime wear as it smells a little too casual for special evenings.  The staying power is moderate... I'd say about 5 hours.

Now, I've owned perfumes going back to 2001 and they're still as good as new.  Let's fast forward to 2012.  I went to check my vanity set and smell a very strong scent of alcohol, musk, and a shitload of synthetic vanilla.  Turns out, the perfume was coming out through the atomizer tube somehow!  I don't know how or why this happened, but a nasty green goo had collected at the rim of the spray nozzle.  I looked to the bottom of the bottle and it was turning into crystal!!!  I have never ever had a perfume do this!  This was an extremely disappointing find because I had a lot more use to get out of this bottle!  My mother has had perfume bottles that lasted longer than 30 years and they still smell as good as new.  Sorry, but I cannot say the same about Elizabeth Arden's products.  I will not buy again since the shelf life is so poor!