Saturday, August 25, 2012

Review: C.O. BIGELOW Lavender & Peppermint Shampoo

I had high hopes for the C.O Bigelow Lavender and Peppermint shampoo that came in the first Glossybox I received a few months ago. First of all, I have an unfortunate scalp and ingredients like peppermint make it tingly and feel a bit better. I brought this to use in my shower as I had recently used up another product. The first time I used it, I was majorly underwhelmed. First of all, the shampoo is super liquidy and I lost a bit as I wasn't expecting that (and the whole being near blind without my specs). Second, there was no tingle. I thought that it was a bit strange as some peppermint oil - even a minute amount - creates some tingle. So I looked at the ingredient list. There is no lavender. There is no peppermint.

The C.O. Bigelow line always seemed like a more natural, at least homeopathic line... but it looks like this is basically fragranced to make it seem more natural? I, for one, am not impressed.

Aqua (Water), Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Cocamide Dea, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Coco Glucoside, Glyceryl Oleate, Sodium Chloride, Triticum Vulgare (Wheat) Gluten, Polyquaternium-7, Parfum (Fragrance), Peg-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Citric Acid, Tetrasodium Edta, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone, Linalool.

Disclosure: The said Glossybox was a PR sample.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Review: Shea Terra Organics Menthe Cardamon Whipped Shea Butter

The Shea Terra Organics Menthe Cardamom Whipped Shea Butter came in the June Glossybox. I wasn't terribly excited about using this product but cracked it open after I finished one of my other body moisturizers. The Shea Terra whipped shea butters come in a variety of scents and this 1oz size retails for $6 on their website. Mint is not usually a favorite of mine for body products so I didn't think I would like this scent but there's something about it that I quite like. Maybe it's the base of the shea butter but there's a creaminess to it that makes it quite pleasant and far from the overpowering scent I was expecting.
Per the name, you'd expect this to have a light whipped consistency, but I found it rather thick and somewhat heavy. It does sink in, but at first, it feels waxy and somewhat sticky on the skin. I also felt that it was a little hard to spread, probably due to the wax content.

I've been interested in trying the Shea Terra Organics line in the past, but I'm not sure that I would repurchase this product though I will use it up. If I'm going for a thick butter, I prefer the Mor line as it is thick but it does melt into the skin a bit better than this Shea Terra butter. Still, I've heard great things about their skincare and I have a body wash to try out too from another beauty box so all hope is not lost (plus, this is ideal for my tired sandal wearing feet).

Disclosure: Received as part of a PR sample (Glossybox).

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Review: LashFood Conditioning Drama Mascara

I never thought this review would ever happen. I find it horrible writing lukewarm reviews. If I don't absolutely love something or absolutely hate something, the review writing can be a bit of a chore. I've had the Lash Food Conditioning Drama Mascara for a few months now. When I first tried it, I didn't love it, nor did I hate it and I didn't review it. I don't know whether the mascara itself has grown on me recently or whether letting the mascara dry out a bit brought on this new found love for this product. Either way, I thought I'd share my thoughts with you.

If you didn't already know, I have stick straight yet long lashes. It's a bit of a curse really because most mascaras out there don't hold a curl well. This is one of very few mascaras out there where I don't need to curl my lashes before I apply it and the lift stays for several hours.
This picture was taken on hour 7 after being out and about and all I did was apply the mascara, no curler. Usually by this point, it no longer looks like I ever curled my lashes.

I have some criticism for the product; first, the brush is massive and makes it very easy to dot mascara on your eyelids; second, it costs $20 and I don't notice any additional lash growth as the line promises. And one item that is a plus and a minus; this stuff stays on, through allergy eye tearing and also is impossible to remove (but that's what you get when you wear long-wearing products). I'm happy that it doesn't irritate my eyes, it doesn't flake or smear, it contains decent ingredients, the tube has a nice weight to it, and it's made in the USA. Honestly, I'd consider purchasing this with my own funds (this was a press sample).

I was looking up the price just now and noticed that Bloom is currently running a deal on the LashFood line. If you buy the LashFood Nano-Peptide Natural Eyelash Conditioner (reviewed here), you can get the LashFood Conditioning Drama Mascara FREE with purchase using code LASHFOOD.

So I've become surprisingly impressed with this product and have been reaching for it a lot over the other mascaras that I have currently open.

Disclosure: Received this for review purposes. Also referral link.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Review: Lily. B Multi-Action Rescue Ultra Eye Cream

I was recently sent the Lily B Multi-Action Rescue Ultra Eye Cream as part of the Bloom Ambassadors program. I don't review eye creams very often and have a hard time incorporating them into my routine. My eyes are very sensitive and tend to get irritated easily. The last thing I want when applying an eye cream is for it to cause my eyes to burn and/or tear especially as the last step to my night time skincare regimen. While the price for this particular eye cream is quite high ($42.50 for the 1/2 fluid ounce), it does not make my eyes burn or tear and is quite soothing on the delicate eye area.

I didn't notice any remarkable differences with things like under eye circles or puffiness, but it did hydrate the area quite well and allowed my concealer to apply much less patchy than normal. The smell is quite pleasant due to the apricot kernel oil. I'm far from a chemist, but I was pretty impressed by the ingredient list and even better - no silicones! The hygienic dispenser also gets a thumbs up in my book.

While I doubt I'd repurchase this, this is great eye cream for those with drier skins and sensitive eyes.

Purified water, Jojoba oil, Apricot Kernel Oil, Squalane, Hyaluronic Acid, Vitamin K, Arnica Montana, Oxido Reductases, Soy Peptide, Hydrolyzed Rice Bran Extract, Laureth-7, C13-14 Isoparaffin, Polyacrylamide, Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexlglycerin, Oil of Kumquat

Disclosure: Sent for review purposes.

Friday, August 10, 2012

August Birchbox

I received my Birchbox for August today and I'm absolutely thrilled! I have been really enjoying the Birchboxes lately and this one is no exception.

What I received:
Miss Jessie's Quick Curls Styling Creme 2oz retail size $9
Pixi Lid Last Shadow Pencil in Peach full size $18
Beauty Fixation Makeup Remover 3 applicators (24 applicators $5)
Viva La Juicy La Fleur sample

And there was a surprise freebie in all the boxes this month!
A Schick Hydro Silk razor plus coupons!

Seriously thrilled with the box this month.

Disclosure: Referral link used.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Review: Simple Sensitive Skin Expert Cleansing Facial Wipes

Simple Sensitive Cleansing Wipes was something that came in one of the Target beauty bags. I was excited to try these wipes as the brand has recently come over from the UK and they are made specifically for sensitive skin. First of all, the wipes are enormous. Compared to most of the wipes on the market, these are significantly bigger. I can nearly clean my whole face at once with one wipe. They aren't super saturated with remover, but it's enough to take my bb cream off at the end of the day. I've been uber lazy at the end of the day and haven't been double cleansing as I normally do and I haven't woken up with any break outs so I say the sensitive claims are true (plus they do not irritate my eyes). These are on the higher end of prices retailing for $6.99 for 25 wipes but they are often on sale. For instance, this week at CVS they are $4.99 and I found dollar off coupons near the display. I'd definitely pick these up if you love the convenience of facial wipes but have sensitive skin.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Holy Grail: Exfoliating Bath Gloves

If you read Jeweled Thumb with any regularity, you should know that I don't fake tan nor go out in the sun with great frequency, yet even for me, the summer is a time to get beach-ready legs. Usually I go for a physical exfoliant (like the Haus of Gloi sugar scrubs) but I don't like to waste product and to get my legs in the shower, I'd waste quite a bit. Enter exfoliating bath gloves (mine are from The Body Shop). Not only are they inexpensive (The Body Shop's are $5 and the store always has sales) but they allow you to use your own body wash to exfoliate. No loofah to drop, no scrub to wash down the drain and by the time you use these for a few weeks, your cost per use is nearly nothing.

I always have a pair of these around. Right now, my hands can be seen sporting a green pair that I picked up at one of their semi-annual sales. Somehow I find these less germy than bath poofs or loofahs since you can get the insides real good with water before hanging them up to dry. If you haven't been able to find a scrub you love, give these guys a try.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Review: Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Extra Strength Alpha Beta Daily Face Peel

So I received the Dennis Gross Skincare Extra Strength Alpha Beta Daily Face Peel pads to review as part of the Bloom Ambassador's program. We were advised to use the pads for 5 days and take pictures on the first day and the 5th. I've used the Dennis Gross Alpha Beta pads before but I never used them every day and I have always used the regular strength version. I found using the extra strength version everyday was simply too harsh on my skin. The one morning that my skin looked great I had used the peel and then approximately 20 minutes later slathered on Elizabeth Arden 8 hour cream.

I took pictures on Day 1 and Day 5 but honestly, my skin probably looks better on Day 1! But for your viewing pleasure: me trying to pay attention while taking photographs = horrible photos!

For the love of all things, please do not enlarge them!

Anyway, even though the lighting is slightly different, I don't know if you can see that my skin is more uneven in the second picture. I will continue to use the Dennis Gross Alpha Beta pads every so often when I receive them with Bloom or Sephora orders but I don't think I'll be using them everyday like I did for this testing! These might be fine for girls with less sensitive skin but mine was (is!) not happy at the moment.

Disclosure: I received 5 wipes for review purposes. All opinions are my own.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

July Empties

I'm finally getting up my July Empties post. I'm actually pleased with the products I finished in July. For a few months, it was very slow, partially because I decided to use jumbo sized products and partially because with the heat and allergy season, I haven't worn much makeup.
You can tell my picture taking skills are horrible when I don't have a flat surface to lean on.
Wella Professionals Moisturizing Treatment for Fine/Normal Hair - Obviously, I have nowhere near fine or normal hair, but this came in the June Glossybox so I thought I'd try it. Other than the scent (floral) and the fact I only got 2 uses out of the tub, I thought it did a decent job of moisturizing, though I can certainly see why this is recommended for normal hair types. Wouldn't repurchase.
Elizabeth Arden 8 Hour Cream tin - While I'm not a huge fan of the scent of the 8 hour cream range, it is amazing at repairing dry or irritated skin. This little tin seemed to last forever and I already have some back ups ready to go.
Physicians Formula Healthy Wear Powder Foundation in Translucent Light - Technically, there's still a small ring of powder around the outside of the pan but it is so hard to get to that I'm calling this compact done. This stuff is awesome and I have to thank Nouveau Cheap for turning me on to the stuff. When it was clearanced at CVS, I picked up a small back up army.
Sundari Neem and Coconut Hair Treatment Oil sachet - This I reviewed as part of the Bloom Ambassador's program. I'm seriously thinking of buying the full size (it's currently in my cart).
The Body Shop Vitamin C Cleansing Face Polish - Holy cow. This seriously lasted forever (it was featured in my last skincare routine from 2011). I found it a little drying and I'm not sure if the newly packaged range has a similar product but I will not be repurchasing!
DHC Make Off Sheet - These were seriously awesome and since there are 50 in a pack, they last a long time. I've now re-purposed the cute plastic case they came in to store some of the wipes I'm currently using since these babies never dried out. Even the last sheet was still moist. I'm not sure if they just use a ton of liquid in the package or if the cute case has anything to do with it. Either way, the next time I need something to get me to a certain dollar amount in a Dermstore order, these will certainly be making their way into my basket!
The Body Shop Born Lippy Stick in Strawberry - Once again, I am thrilled that The Body Shop came out with this range in stick form and I loved this! I found it moisturizing though not as moisturizing as some of my lip balms and it smells like strawberry bubble yum. Will definitely repurchase!
Yves Rocher Micellar Cleansing Water - This is a great refreshing Micellar water but find it less gentle than some others on the market. It actually works great as a toner or in the morning when I'm in a rush. I'm currently trying a different cleansing water right now. Not sure I'd repurchase this one as my sensitive skin doesn't always like it.

So that's what I used up in July. Definitely post below with what you've used up recently!

Models Own Nail Polish Giveaway Winner!

Congratulations to...
Danielle C.!

You will be receiving an e-mail shortly so I can get your mailing address.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

July Glossybox

My July Glossybox recently came in the mail so I thought I'd show you guys what was in it. This month actually came with 2 full sized products which I thought was pretty decent of Glossybox since they've only promised 1 full sized item per box.
This month's theme is Summer Nights, "this month's Glossybox offers you the essentials you'll need to indulge in products that show off your sun kissed skin and hair and enhance sultry eyes. Afterwards, throw on your sexy sandals and dance the night away under the shimmering summer sky." It makes me wonder if some people received eye shadow in their boxes. Anyone?
I received the following products:
Senna Cosmetics Double Dose Lip Lacquer in Double Dipped full size $22
Figs and Rouge lip face and body balm full size $6
Alessandro International Pedix Heel Rescue Balm 30 ml (full size 100ml $18.50) worth $5.50
Sebastian Color Ignite Multi Tone Shampoo 1.7floz (full size 8.4oz $14.95) worth $3
Sebastian Color Ignite Multi Tone Conditioner 1.65floz (full size 6.6oz $16.95) worth $4
extra Blushed fragrance sample towelette

I've already tried the Senna Cosmetics Lip Lacquer previously and didn't care for it, but I am super excited for the Figs and Rouge balm and the Heel Rescue balm. Let's just say sandal season has not been kind to my heels! I'll probably wind up giving the shampoo and conditioner to my mom as she colors her hair and I do not. Not a bad box for $21. I think this month you are getting your money's worth, but I still feel the price point is a bit high given the other boxes on the American scene at the moment.

Disclosure: This box was received for review purposes. All opinions are my own.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Moisture is King

I'm going to unofficially call this "Hair Week" at Jeweled Thumb. Ever since I cut my hair a few weeks ago, it's almost as though I have been relearning how to deal with my hair. My hair has spring and life these days but it also needs products to help out. Something that I can't stress enough when dealing with dry/damaged frizz-prone hair is giving it the moisture it needs. There are many hair products on the market that claim to combat frizz and some do a great job but others add tons of chemical nasties or ingredients that coat the hair and make it appear moisturized and healthy (silicones). Personally, I can't stand these types of products. I hate having a sticky film on my hands after putting product in my hair and I try to stay away from products that have silicones in them.

I was recently given the opportunity to try a couple hair products through the Bloom Ambassador's program. One I really like and the other I'm not too keen on.
The first is the Sundari Healing Neem and Coconut Hair Treatment Oil. While the scent of this treatment is a little strong for my liking, the treatment oil is awesome. First of all, it contains several essential oils including neem oil, rose flower oil, rice oil, coconut oil, lavender oil, and apricot kernel oil and no nasty ingredients like silicone or parabens. I've used this as a hair treatment but I've also used it during the day time as well. It is very similar to the Biolage Delicate Care Organic Certified Oil that I reviewed and finished but this one is actually more cost effective. The Biolage is $20 for 1.7oz ($11.76 per ounce) and this is $34 for 3.4oz ($10 per ounce). Both treatment oils use lavender oil for its moisturizing properties so they both smell the same as well. I received a few sample packets of this and I'm eying the full size.
The other is the T'eez Bounce Me Styling Cream. This is the item that I wasn't so happy with. It has silicones, parabens and beeswax which makes the cream a bit thicker than I normally use. I rarely use true styling products in my hair. My hair stylist recently tried convincing me to use mousse. Let's just say I bought a bottle, eyed it down and stuck it in my medicine cabinet. Anyway, while this has some moisturizing ingredients, I simply wasn't a fan of the texture and I think the wax is the culprit here. I didn't seem to disperse well throughout my hair, it was a bit thick and sticky and I prefer when true styling products can be use on damp or dry hair as I usually shower at night. If you use styling aides, you might not have a problem with this cream. The tube comes with 6oz and retails for $22.99.

What are your tips and tricks for dealing with unruly locks?

Disclosure: Both were received for review as part of the Bloom Ambassador's program. My opinions are mine and honest as always!