It’s been a while since I did one of these “Currently Loving” posts, and although I intended to do it on a monthly basis, somehow it never happened. I’ve been testing lots of new products this month, and thought this would be a great way to post snippets on some new loves and discoveries!
MAKE Colour Super Matte Cake Liner Duo ($25/6.8 g): I am extremely picky when it comes to black eyeliners: I need something that’s a. super matte, b. extremely dark, and c. will not smudge under any circumstances, even when I do winged eyeliners. While I really like the opacity and the matte finish of the Tarte eyeliner, it has a tendency to slide off after a couple of hours, especially during these hot summers when my eyelids get oily. Enter MAKE Colour Cake Liner duo: Problem solved.
I dip a damp eyeliner brush into the product and stroke to pick up the strong, black pigment. One or two swipes are sufficient, saving you previous time in the AM. The liner dries quickly, and is very easy to wash off using an oil cleanser (I’m currently using One Love Organics Vitamin B Enzyme Cleansing Oil). The white pigment can be used for the water line, or mixed with the black pigment for a less intense look. The quantity provided is super generous, and this will last me ages! The cake texture of the product means you could also multi-task and use this for a killer smokey eye…the options are endless!
Wonderland Organics Balance Serum ($39.99/0.5 oz): This serum is formulated for oily/combination, and acne-prone skin, and helps to reduce the appearance of blemishes. In short, this has my name written all over it. With organic apricot kernel oil forming the main base, it’s no surprise that the texture is extremely light – 2 to 3 drops adequately moisturizes both your face and neck. As always, I like to first generously spritz my face with a hydrating toner, to maximize the absorption of the face oil. Although it’s super hot outside, this serum doesn’t really feel heavy, and I prefer to reserve it for my daytime skincare routine when I want to add a drop or two to my water based serums and moisturizers. The other base oils included in this serum are those that are known to be super beneficial for oilier skin types: Jojoba (balancing), Sea Buckthorn (high levels of Vitamin C), and Argan Oil (Liquid Gold…need I say more?). The essential oils used are, Neroli Oil, Sweet Orange Oil, Frankincense Oil, and Carrot Seed Oil. The serum has an extremely subtle citrusy smell; in fact, on most mornings, I couldn’t even detect the smell. This is great news for those who are sensitive to fragrances and/or essential oils. I love the fact that all the ingredients used are organic, and are housed in a dark, high quality Miron glass pump bottle. The addition of some more skin nourishing ingredients, such as CoQ10 or extra Vitamin C in its stabilized form, or Ferulic Acid would have made this an even better “all in one” serum, but for the high quality of oils it already contains and the luxe packaging, the pricing is great and within the means of most green beauty girls who’re looking to find an approachable face serum to start off with.
Update: After reading this review, Ally Lin (the founder), graciously reached out with a 15% off discount code for my readers. Please use coupon code “ruhimaach” during checkout (Note: I receive no compensation from your purchase. Coupon code expires on July 10th, 2015). Thanks so much, Ally!
Dr. Hauschka Clarifying Steam Bath ($35/3.4 oz): There’s nothing quite as relaxing as a facial treatment at a spa, and while I don’t treat myself to one nearly as often as I would like to, this clarifying steam bath that’s specially aimed at congested skin recreates the some of the spa-like magic in the comforts of your own home, and that too, at a pittance. This is a highly concentrated liquid, and only 2 tablespoons need to be mixed in a big bowl (about 1L.) of steaming hot water. I lean over the bowl, covering my head with a large towel, and steam for 10-15 minutes, since I have combination/acne prone skin. Those who have dry or more sensitive skin can still enjoy the treatment with reduced steaming time. Let’s be honest here – giving yourself a facial on your own is time consuming, and if you’re like me, you’ll appreciate the convenience of having a ready made solution that already contains the right mix of ingredients.
This Steam Bath has Nasturtium, daisy and witch hazel – ingredients known to decongest pores and loosen blackheads. I couldn’t really detect much of a fragrance, and for once, wish it were a little more fragrant, because good fragrances always add that extra zing. Just like any other steam baths, the first couple of minutes are the most intense, but also the most detoxifying! I like to thoroughly cleanse my face first, and after steaming with the solution, follow up with a deep mud treatment mask to drive the nutrients from the mask even deeper into the newly decongested skin surface. My skin feels super soft and glowy, and has a warm flush to it – the type of flush that says you just got a good physical workout (lies, of course)!
John Masters Organics Firming Eye Gel ($30/0.5 fl oz): I have pretty high standards when it comes to eye creams, and this is one category of skincare product where I don’t easily splurge. Since my current favorite is quite expensive, I am happy to have found another eye gel that’s perfect for summer time. JMO’s firming eye gel is extremely light in texture, and absorbs very easily, making it a great option under eye makeup for AM skincare routines. The eye gel claims to be firm the eye area, reduce puffiness as well as crow feet. I cannot speak for any of these claims since I don’t suffer from these conditions, but I really like using it as a regular eye gel during morning time, when time is of the essence.
Among the various ingredients listed, the addition of Spirulina really caught my attention the most, since it has a stellar reputation of nourishing the skin with essential fatty acids and vitamins. In addition, the eye gel also has rye (adds elasticity), oat kernel (anti-inflammatory), rice (prevents wrinkles), and aspen bark (natural preservative). The eye gel is packaged in a high end dark glass bottle, with a tiny pump dispenser. Half a pump is sufficient to cover both eyes (eyelids and under eye area). The pricing is reasonable for a generous quantity of product, and most of the ingredients are certified organic.
Hair Story Studio Purely Perfect Smooth Finish Creme ($34/4 oz): If you have long, oily, dandruff prone hair like I do, you’ll know the struggles involved in finding a styling creme that doesn’t weigh down your already limp hair. While searching for hair products, I always look for the magic word “volume”, and this finishing cream delivers exactly that, and much more. For my shoulder length hair, about half a pump worth of product applied to damp hair is sufficient for adequate protection before a blow dry. Even though I use a flat brush instead of a round brush, the amount of volume I get is very impressive. It’s completely weightless, and for thicker hair, I would imagine a little bit more of the product would do the trick! The styling creme also has a very subtle fragrance that I love – can’t exactly place my finger on what it smells like (I’m horrible at describing smells), but it’s really good. I have also been testing the cleansing cream from this brand, and will do a separate follow on post on that in a couple of weeks.