Sunday, July 29, 2012

Sunny Day Favorites: SkinCeuticals Physical Fusion UV Defense SPF50 & Estee Lauder Lip Conditioner SPF15

Recently while getting ready for a morning out at Happy Hollow park(thats our little rest area on the right) on Fort Leonard Wood I realized I hadn't shared my sunny day essentials with you.  There are only two products I don't leave the house without if I will be out in the sun and those are Skin Ceuticals Physical Fusion UV Defense SPF 50 and Estee Lauder Lip Conditioner SPF 15.

First off, let's talk about SkinCeuticals Physical Fusion UV Defense.  I've tried so many different sunscreens and I hate them all, except for this one.  It's not pasty and white and doesn't take a lifetime to rub into your skin, its beige colored tint blends in without leaving obvious residue and it doesn't leave my skin oily, just visibly radiant.  I have sensitive skin and sunscreens usually makes my skin itch and breakout.  This one does not, which I am so thankful for.  It also doesn't contain chemical filters, which I believe are the ingredients that make me itch. The only thing I don't like is that it smells like sunscreen. Oh well, it's still the best sunscreen I've tried.

Here is what SkinCeutical's website say's about the product:
A groundbreaking, weightless sunscreen featuring color-infused sunscreen technology that provides a universal tint and boosts daily radiance. PHYSICAL FUSION UV DEFENSE SPF 50 offers the photoprotection of trusted broad-spectrum, physical filters, zinc oxide (Z-COTE®) and titanium dioxide, and is enhanced by artemia salina, a plankton extract, to increase the skin’s defenses and resistance to UV and heat stress.
The unique ‘shake then apply’ action assures even distribution of active ingredients in this silky sheer fluid that dries quickly and leaves no residue.
  • Sheer, filmless tint adaptable to all skin tones 
  • Boosts radiance for a more even, luminous complexion 
  • High SPF and UVA protection, PPD 21 
  • Contains transparent Zinc Oxide, the only UV filter spanning the full UVA/UVB spectrum 
  • Non-comedogenic 
  • No chemical filters
Translucent Color Spheres: Iron Oxide Spheres evenly disperse within fluid texture to provide sheer surface coating, universal tint for all skin tones, and boost daily radiance.
5% zinc oxide (Z-COTE®)
6% titanium dioxide
Artemia salina, a plankton extract that increases skin defenses and resistance to UV and heat stress

 I received this Estee Lauder Lip Conditioner SPF 15 in a GWP and I absolutely love it.  It makes my lips feel soft and supple.  It looks slightly shiny but very natural when applied.  I don't like fussing with glosses or color when I'm going to be out in the sun so this is great for me.  My hair doesn't stick to my lips either if it's windy.  I also like that there is no obvious scent or taste.  You can find this for purchase at the Neiman Marcus website.

Here is what the NM website say's about this product:

This lip-caring formula hydrates, comforts and protects your lips, day and night.
Includes SPF 15 sunscreen plus Vitamins C and E. Shea Butter and other naturally derived moisturizers help hydrate, smooth and soothe lips.
Wear under lipstick as a moisturizing base coat or wear it overnight as an intensive moisture treatment.
Here are some pictures of what I did on this fun sunny day.

 On the left is the drive into Happy Hollow park, I love the canopy of tree branches.  On the right is my precious daughter playing in the Big Piney River.  My goal is to instill in her a love of her own natural skin color and to always protect it from the sun.  No need to be sunbaked to be gorgeous!

 My husband and daughter playing in shallow pool made by the rocks in the river, she is totally a daddy's girl!  Love them so very much!

Have fun and be safe outdoors.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

QVC Tarte Perfect & Treat 6-piece High Performanc Collection and Foundation Comparisons: Photos, Swatches and Thoughts

A couple of weeks ago I saw a post from the Muse somewhere, either on twitter or facebook about this kit that would be coming out on QVC from Tarte.  I love all things Tarte so I had to have it.  I was able to get the Auto Delivery code an order it ahead of time.  I've had it for a couple of weeks now and have been testing out the foundation.  It's really why I bought the kit and one of my favorite foundations is the Amazonian Clay Full Coverage foundation which I reviewed here and the Smooth Operator Amazonian Clay Tinted Moisturizer.  So naturally I wanted to try the Maracuja Miracle Foundation.   I will show you swatches and share thoughts of all the things in this kit, but my main focus will be the foundation.  Let's start off with pictures and a list of what you get in this kit.  The kit is housed in a pretty floral cardboard box.  What's included?

  • 1-fl-oz Maracuja Miracle 12-hour Foundation Broad Spectrum SPF 15 in choice of fair, light, medium, tan, and deep 
  • 0.60-fl-oz 100% pure Maracuja Oil rollerball--exclusive to QVC until 1/31/13 
  • 0.10-oz LipSurgence Lip Shine in smitten soft pink with built-in sharpener--exclusive to QVC until 1/31/13 
  • 0.24-fl-oz Gifted Amazonian Clay Smart Mascara in black 
  • modernEYES waterproof creaseless shadow/liner duo in plumberry (pinkish plum) 0.017-oz/plum brown (deep purple brown) 0.005-oz--exclusive to QVC until 1/31/13 
  • Retoucher bamboo foundation brush 
  • Get The Look Pamphlet 


So let's get to the goodies inside, starting with the Maracuja Miracle 12hr Foundation in Medium.  It comes housed in a glass jar with a pump, so you don't have to be worried about contamination or the product ingredients going bad and the bamboo cap makes it so appealing to the eye.  It also came with a bamboo foundation brush that I like to use for other things other than applying foundation.

Here is what Tarte's website say's about the foundation:
Thanks to the miracle of maracuja, this long wearing, waterproof pure foundation rich in Vitamin C and available in 10 shades, goes on seamlessly and instantly restores skin's natural luster for a firmer, brighter, smoother complexion. Maracuja has also been known to reduce redness, irritation, and inflammation of the skin making this foundation perfect for all skin types and ideal for sensitive, dehydrated, dry or aging skin. The combination of Vitamins A, E and mineral pigments hydrates and preserves skin. tarte's maracuja miracle is housed in a soft-finish recyclable glass bottle that boasts a sustainable bamboo cap making it our most eco-chic foundation ever.

FIRMER: nutrient-rich essential fatty acids repair & rejuvenate skin

BRIGHTER: Vitamin C awakens skin for a healthy, radiant complexion
SMOOTHER: moisture-rich formula replenishes & hydrates skin

skinvigorating™ ingredients

beeswax: as an alternative to synthetic waxes, natural beeswax is used as a waterproofing agent, a protective barrier between the skin and the environment and it has also been known to naturally stimulate collagen production which plumps the skin and decreases the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles

maracuja: known to reduce redness, irritation & inflammation of the skin

mineral pigments: colors and dyes derived from natural minerals have been know to soothe and soften the skin

water: pure water delivers and retains moisture

skinvigorating™ benefits

formulated without mineral oil
formulated without paraben
formulated without phthalates
formulated without sodium lauryl sulfate

Active Ingredients: avobenzone 3.0%, octinoxate 7.5% octisalate 4.0%, oxybenzone 2.0%
Inactive Ingredients: water, cyclopentasiloxane, cetyl peg/ppg-10/1 dimethicone, mica , butylene glycol, cyclohexasiloxane, ozokerite, vp/eicosene copolymer, silica, c12-15 alkyl benzoate, disteardimonium hectorite, phenoxyethanol, Benzotriazolyl Dodecyl p-Cresol, magnesium sulfate, caprylyl glycol, polyglyceryl-4 isostearate, hexyl laurate, bis-vinyl dimethicone/dimethicone copolymer, Acrylates/Polytrimethylsiloxymethacrylate Copolymer, beeswax potassium sorbate, glycereth-18 ethylhexanoate, Polymethylsilsesquioxane, boron nitride, c18-21 alkane, polyisobutene, ethoxydiglycol, xanthan gum, barium sulfate, 1,2-hexanediol, polyhydroxystearic acid, glycerin, benzoic acid, glycereth-18, c30-45 alkyl cetearyl dimethicone crosspolymer, isododecane, caprylhydroxamic acid, aluminum dimyristate, triethoxycaprylylsilane, hydrolyzed vegetable protein, propylene carbonate, allantoin, disodium stearoyl glutamate, alumina, stearic acid, trehalose, gold, hexylene glycol, peat extract, palmitoyl hexapeptide-14, passiflora edulis seed oil, sodium benzoate, sodium hyaluronate, titanium dioxide, iron oxides.

I decided to compare it to one of my Holy Grail foundations which happens to be Tarte's Amazonian Clay Full Coverage Foundation. On Tarte's website there are ten colors to choose from and on QVC only four. I chose medium since that is the color I already use in the Amazonian Clay formula but found that it was more yellow and slightly darker. Let's discuss what it promises and if it delivers. First of all, it's supposed to be long wearing. It claims twelve hour wear, I get about eight and it's not full coverage more like medium. Next, it's supposed to apply seamlessly, I find that it does not, especially if you use the brush. While I do like the brush, it does not blend the foundation well, I find I have to use my fingertips afterwards to smooth it out. I do find though if you skip the maracuja oil roller ball and use Tarte's Clean Slate primer you get a better finish. Also, it sits on my face and does not have a natural looking finish in my opinion. It also states that it's good for sensitive, dehydrated and dry or aging skin. While I do have sensitive skin, it's not dry, slightly more combination. I think that's probably why it doesn't blend well with my skin. I think this foundation is probably best for dry skin. It's runny compared to Amazonian Clay foundation, which is more creamy in my opinion. So if your torn between the two I would use your skin type as the deciding factor. Another thing I wonder about is the Vitamin C being compromised because of the soft finish glass bottle. Overall I am not impressed, especially since the Amazonian Clay foundation is so amazing.
The photo on the left is the Maracuja Foundation and the one on the right is the Amazonian Clay both are shade medium.

Next, is the Pure Maracuja Oil Roller Ball.  First of I have to say that I can't use Maracuja oil on my face it makes my skin itch and causes milia and welts on me personally.  I still love to use Maracuja oil on other body parts.  I keep a bottle in my shower and apply it to my hair and body, sometimes I mix it in my body lotion as well.  I also like applying it on my lips and dry, rough spots on my body.  I'm not a fan of applying this to the face over and over again using the same roller and possibly contaminating the product with bacteria.  One thing I will say is that it dosen't over apply the product, you do get just the right amount for your face when you are rolling it on.  I don't recommend using this as your primer, I think you still need a good primer on top of it to get a smoother looking finish.

LipSurgence Lip Shine in smitten soft pink with built-in sharpener is a creamy rosy pink color but I don't like the sharpener that's built in.  I rather have a separate one.  Its finish is that of a lipstick and it has the signature spearmint smell and flavor that I love.

modernEYES waterproof creaseless shadow/liner duo in plumberry,  is a two sided pencil that houses and eyeliner and eyeshadow pencil.   The eyeshadow color is mauve looking plum and the eyeliner is a brownish plum color.  I really like this duo and it is long wearing.  The only problem is that I can't wear the eyeliner on my water line because it causes my eyes to water like crazy.

From L-R:  Lip Surgence, Eyeshadow and Eyeliner.

Gifted Amazonian Clay Mascara is a pretty good mascara that does lengthen and separate but I still love Lights, Camera, Lashes better.

My favorite part of the kit was this little bonus included, Maracuja C-Brightener Eye Treatment.  I've been using it for about three weeks and I love it, it has definitely made a difference with my dark circles. 

Overall, this kit was not worth the $59 price tag since I did not like the foundation and the colors included in this kit are nothing that I would consider unique and can easily be duped.  The good thing about QVC is that you can return the product if you aren't happy with it.   I am keeping my kit since I do plan to use everything else in the kit and I plan to keep working with the foundation to see if I will change my mind on it.   I LOVE Tarte but this kit was just not made for me.