"Zest is the secret of all beauty. There is no beauty that is attractive without zest." - Christian Dior

Monday, 13 May 2013

QUICK REVIEW: Revlon Colourstay 24 Hour Foundation – Normal/Dry Skin (150 Buff) – SPF 20

Busy busy busy, but thought I'd drop in some swatches of a "drugstore" foundation that I actually like (Shock! Horror!). I included it in my big foundation swatch-a-thon a few weeks ago, but have never actually got round to reviewing it (despite the fact I am now on my third bottle).

According to the blurb, this should afford one a “flawless look, lightweight feel” - not sure I agree with that, necessarily. I can definitely feel it on my face - although it's not uncomfortable, I know it's there. This is not a "no-makeup" foundation.

COLOUR: This one’s a tiny teeny bit too light for me on a daily basis – I would normally get 200 Nude, but I must have been feeling pale that day – but would be fine in winter, or with some bronzing warmth added. Nude is also slightly more pink-peach in undertone (which is brightening to my skin) than Buff, which leans neutral.

COVERAGE: Really good, but slightly sheerer in the normal/dry variant. The combo/oily version is much better for coverage but makes me look mask-like - and if I were to turn around too quickly, my face would probably end up on the back of my head.

STAYING POWER: I think 24 hours would be a bit of a stretch (not that I would ever test it for that long) – but it shows some definite signs of wear and tear around the 6 hour mark, with the nose and chin all but disappearing after eight or nine. Fine if you top up at lunchtime, but AIN’T NOBODY GOT TIME FOR DAT.

AND THE DRY SKIN….?: Even with the normal/dry version, there’s still a little bit of “flaking” on my dry patches after a while, but this doesn't set in for a good few hours and is easily rectified with a little squirt of Mac Fix + spray.

Here are some hand swatches, and before-and-afters for your perusal.......... (bare skin alert!).

Bare skin - just a dash of moisturiser (and a self-inflicted poke in the eye, as you can tell from the bloodshot stare)

Just one layer of Revlon Colourstay - applied with a flat-topped stippling brush

Still only one layer, but a bit more face added - this is my "day" face, i.e. NYX Rouge Cream Blush in CB02 Natural, NARS Loose Powder in Flesh (just on chin and bridge of nose), No7 Exquisite Curl mascara in black, and a slick of Lanolips Lip Ointment in Apples
Left: natural (overcast) daylight      Right: indoors, titanium bulb light
Revlon Colourstay can be bought from Boots for £12.49, but is more often than not on some sort of three-for-two deal (which it is at the moment, so bag yourself a bargain!).


Saturday, 11 May 2013

Oh dear god, not another new “favourite” skin care brand…….

Introducing Avene – not a brand I had heard much of, serial lagger-behinder that I am, but since the introduction of a relatively comprehensive range in Victoria Centre Boots (Nottingham) I picked up their Gentle Toner (thinking nothing of it – it was decently priced and saved me walking into the shop too far) – but when I got it home for “first contact”, a new love affair was instantly kindled.

My interest piqued, I went on to the Avene website for more info on the brand, and came across their Skin Diagnosis tool - a series of questions which ask you to describe your skin type – one of the more detailed questionnaires I’ve come across on website like this.

Shock of shocks, my results came out to be both “very dry” and “sensitive” (not in itself ground breaking information….), and the website then very helpfully took me to a new page where several products were listed that would be specifically suited to my skin type. Again, not necessarily that innovative, but I found myself being impressed with their detail – there were products across all stages of a typical skin-care routine, along with suggestions of complementary products such as night creams etc.  Something I particularly liked, was the lack of hard sell – and the product recommendations could then be saved on the website by setting up (what I presume to be a secure) account, so the info could be modified/retrieved at your leisure.

The bit that really made my day however, was that just over a week later, a little parcel of samples landed on my door mat, completely unannounced. I guess this happens to everyone so I am probably not special (sad face) but I FELT special, just for that brief moment in time. Those little details are what makes me loyal to a brand – and the fact that these products work wonderfully just put the icing on the cake. Avene, I am your new Number One fan…! 

These samples were tiny teeny versions of a couple of the products that had been recommended to me, namely:

Hydrance Optimale Rich Hydrating cream (SPF 20) – sample size 5ml (for me, two applications!)

Thick, gooey, smells a bit “sun cream-y”, but OH MY GOD MY SKIN LOVES THIS STUFF – new replacement favourite for my much-loved Embryolisse Lait Crème Concentre/Baume Riche combo, or No7 Beautiful Skin (dry to very dry).

Gentle Milk Cleanser – sample size 25ml
Does the job, leaves skin feeling nourished, but can be a bit residue-y unless you also use a toner. But, seeing as I had already started to use the Gentle Toner in my previous cleansing routine….. Hakuna Matata. I prefered to use this as a hot-cloth cleanser, just so I could feel it working. Takes off foundation nicely, but struggles a little with gel or liquid eyeliner so I always use a bit of Clinique “Lids, Lashes and Lips” on that bad boy first. I got five decent cleanses out of the sample.

For those of you that don’t suffer with very dry skin, you will probably not be that amazed – but to poor old flaky-scaly-itchy me, the deal clincher here is that I DON’T HAVE TO PUT ON EXTRA LAYERS OF MOISTURISER. For the first time in my life, I can put on one layer, and wander out of the bathroom happy-go-lucky, even whistling a little tune, while I wait the obligatory ten minutes for it to soak in properly so I can put my face on. If you’d told me that was even possible a week ago, I would have slapped you down for crazy talkin’.

Boots, I’ll be seeing you again very shortly. I NEED TO BUY EVERY SINGLE PRODUCT.