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Making faces

25 Apr

I’ve got to post about this right away, just in case you want to go buy this makeup kit before it’s gone. On sale this week, the $20 regularly priced UO Beauty Playground Kit is only $4.99. I’ve been staring at this kit for weeks while I work, unwilling to pay the $20 for eyeshadow in a paper box. Mostly I’ve been plain curious to try the Urban house brand of cosmetics, wishing I was a beauty buyer picking out the product or the merchandiser packaging it.

The kit includes 4 eyeshadows, black pencil eyeliner, gold shimmer powder, and a lipgloss. Shimmer powder is almost as useless to me as glitter. I just don’t need it or really dig it. I wore it today as a highlighter on my cheekbones today just to try it. Eh. Maybe if I was a tan girl and not Snow White I would love it. The eyeliner was pretty basic. It went past smudge-able to “you can practically wipe it off.” I wore it under my eyeshadow so it set pretty well. The eyeshadow palette was similar to a Mary Kay one I got for free, am almost out of , and loved. Again, they may look better on a tan girl, but they’re still good metallic neutrals. I’ve been seeing a lot of magazine spreads using colors like the lightest shade, a shimmery peach, as a base, highlighter, and along the lower lash line. It’s been a great change for me from the super light base colors I’ve been using. No more white mask around my eyes.

I’ve saved the best for last. The lipgloss was my favorite part. It’s a great rusty cherry color (always worry about reds and the whiteness of my teeth and this looked good). The lipgloss was smooth and not sticky, it felt great. It didn’t last terribly long but maybe that’s because it smelled and tasted like candy (yummy).

If Urban sold these lipglosses individually, I would snatch them up. Especially if they featured the new trends (bright orange? Hot pink? Yes please.) I understand the difficulty of creating an in-house cosmetics line: loss prevention, training employees on the product, keeping sanitary testers, building a brand and regular customers. BUT Urban should totally push these lipglosses. They’re doing well with their nail polishes. The great colors get girls to buy them. I think the quality for the price gets them to come back for more. Nail polish and lipgloss have become as important as jewelry to a girl’s wardrobe.





What a LUSH!

1 Dec

I’ve spent so much time in the drugstores I don’t notice boutique cosmetic shops. I usually assume they’re always out of my budget anyway. BUT I came across LUSH Fresh Handmade Cosmetics at the mall a couple of weeks ago and have been so excited by this company ever since. First off, I want to share with you their beliefs.

We believe in making effective products from fresh, organic* fruit and vegetables, the finest essential oils and safe synthetics.

We invent our own products and fragrances. We make them fresh by hand using little or no preservative or packaging, using only vegetarian ingredients, and tell you when they were made.

We believe in buying ingredients only from companies that do not commission tests on animals and in testing our products on humans.

We believe in happy people making happy soap, putting our faces on our products and making our mums proud.

We believe in long candlelit baths, sharing showers, massage, filling the world with perfume and in the right to make mistakes, lose everything and start again.

We believe our products are good value, that we should make a profit and that the customer is always right.

* We also believe words like fresh and organic have honest meaning beyond marketing.

Pretty awesome, right? But I’ve come across other companies with good will and good intentions, but a crap product. I think that too often cosmetic companies are making things too one-size-fits-all. At LUSH, there was a product for every need, every skin type. I told the sales associate that I have oily skin and she showed me at least 3 different face washes I could use. There was oily with acne, oily and sensitive, oily/combination. I asked a million questions about ingredients and came away impressed. So, there’s this ethical company selling me body products that are just as based in science as the big chemical companies? Again, awesome.

My biggest adjustment with LUSH is their little to no packaging. They make products into solids whenever they can to eliminate the waste of a bottle. Yay for the environment, but… solid shampoo? I’m so scared of it. I have to try it. And now that I’ve poured over their catalog, I have found the perfect products for everyone I know. I want to get the coconut shampoo for my curly-haired friend. I want to pick out a solid perfume for my dad, since he can’t do alcohol based sprays. There’s even a solid body tint bar, for my friend who hates being pale. I also think this is a great collection for men as well. The (little) packaging is cool and nothing in the store screams girl. I’m grateful to LUSH for getting me excited about body care again. It got this blog started!

Here’s what I went home with after my first LUSH experience:

Herbalism clay face cleanser and a sample of Enzymion moisturizer

I’ll come back to these to let you know how they worked out for me, but I encourage you to go into a LUSH store and play. They said they also give facials in store so you can try stuff. Also, here‘s a review NYLON magazine did online of LUSH dry shampoo.