Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Heidi's Beauty Bag - Mascara and Cleanser - because in my world, yes, they are related

I have discussed nail polish but haven't gotten to the other 5 million beauty products that I love. I am not particularly artistic when it comes to my makeup, but I do love reading about the latest innovations and products. And then go back to my usual routine 99% of the time. But I do switch it up occasionally...

Let's start with mascara. I go through a lot of mascara because I am very picky. I am constantly on the lookout for my HG mascara. That's actually Holy Grail, in MakeupAlley.com-speak, but my initials, too, so yay! And if you haven't ever checked out MakeupAlley.com, what are you waiting for? It's so great, ditch me and head over. You can come back later and we'll catch up then.

Anyways... the mascara issue probably stems from the fact that I used to have contacts. Got my PRK surgery about 5 years ago. Yes, PRK, not Lasik, as my corneas were too thin, which they do directly on top of the cornea, not in the nice little flap, so more discomfort and longer healing time - but still the greatest thing in the world and seriously, life-altering. When hubby decided to do it last year (lucky guy, thick corneas = Lasik), I told him that I would eat mac & cheese for 6 months if we needed to, because that's what a difference in my life it had made. I was so blind, I couldn't even see the wall chart at the eye doctor's office. But I have always been picky about mascara - I want the perfect one, yes, my HG mascara.

I have had a couple of close contenders lately:

1 - YSL Faux Cils Mascara. ($28.50 at Sephora, rating of 4.1 on MakeupAlley.com and 4.5 on Sephora) Lovely full, long lashes. Really doesn't clump. Stays pretty well. And how can you not love the pretty gold tube? It just feels glamorous...

2 - Clinique Lash Power. ($14 at Sephora, rating of 3.7 on MakeupAlley.com and 4.4 on Sephora) Love the tubing mascara. Stays on forever, until you gently rub off with warm water. Great summertime mascara. Not a huge amount of length and volume, but can build a bit.

And I've had some misses:

1 - *All* of the vibrating mascara (Estee Lauder TurboLash and Lancome Oscillation). These took WAY too much time. I am lazy about my morning makeup routine and I don't like anything that takes too long. So doubling my mascara application - particularly for not stellar results - that was a no-go for me.

2 - Givenchy Phenomen-Eyes - I love love love the applicator (you know, the one that looks sorta like a medieval mace), it is great. The formula on the other hand - it never felt like it dried, it always felt gummy. And I first tried it in August, so gumminess was particularly bad.

Which brings me to my new, amazing, fantastic mascara find - thanks so much to GingerSnap's suggestion on my Crash & Burn post. L'Oreal Double Extend Beauty Tubes Lash Extension Effect Mascara. (And make sure it's the Beauty Tubes one, not the others, for which I cannot vouch.) Folks, that is a seriously long name, but it does live up to the hype. I have always resisted the 2-wand mascaras (see lazy note, above), but this one doesn't take any more time. I do the same total number of swipes, just from 2 different ends. And the bonus is that the wand is shorter.

I have always loved most mascara samples, more so than the full size products - and here's why - they have the short wand, so you actually have better control. Same with the L'Oreal Beauty Tube - the wand is short, so if you are holding in the middle, you have great control. I wore this yesterday all day. Wore it to boot camp class last night (with fab trainer, Mary Beth - we are doing 2-day/week boot camp instead of our pairs training, and this will take me to Memorial Day/pool opening - woo hoo!) . And did I mention it was raining outside? So there I am working out, in the rain, sweating, in the rain, laying on my back with my face up to the rain. Did it budge? Did it smudge? Did it run? No, no, and no. Granted I've only tried this out a few days, so I can't give the definitive report, but I think we have a winner here. So thanks again to GingerSnap for the excellent recommendation!!

Here's the other benefit of tubing mascaras and how it's related to cleansers... To repeat, I am lazy. I hate washing my face at night. With regular mascara, I just use face wipes. I love the Pond's Clean Sweep, Cleansing & Make-up Removing Towelettes. And I know that I should actually do a full-on face washing, but at night, just before bed, especially when it's chilly, I don't really want to get my face all wet. So I am normally content to use the Pond's wipe, and then apply eye cream and lotion (and Retin-A, if I'm doing it that night). Yes, I realize that I should wash/rinse, but it just doesn't happen all the time. But with the tubing mascara, because you get them off with warm water, I almost always end up washing my face, with actual cleanser that's good for it. So the tubing mascaras have a the double bonus of lasting on my lashes, and forcing me to wash my face.

So moving on to cleansers, I have 2 current favorites:

1 - (which may be my HG) - I love Alba's Pineapple Enzyme Facial Cleanser, which I get it Target. I have seen the line at grocery stores as well, like Giant and Whole Foods. This is what I keep in the shower because the pineapple-citrus smell is so refreshing in the morning. I feel like it cleans really well without stripping my skin. Alba's Papaya Enzyme Mask is fantastic as well. I need to remember to do that tonight. Like I said, I am so lazy about my skincare regime in the evening.

2 - In the evening, if I'm not using a facial wipe, I'll use Olay's Definity Penetrating Mousse Cleanser. Also very good, but I'm a sucker for the truly tropical smell of Alba, so that's why this one is no longer in the shower. Still in rotation, though. And it has something a little bit scrubby in it (the "micro polishing complex"), so I feel like it cleans really well. But again, not too drying.

What do you use for mascara and cleanser? What works for you? And even more importantly, do you have any disasters to warn us away from?


snaphappy said...

As you know, I'm not a big makeup person. But I'm all about the mascara. I have tried many, but I keep going back to Maybelline Define-A-Lash in Very Black: http://www.maybelline.com/product/eye/mascara/define-a-lash-lengthening-mascara.htm

And, I know you didn't ask, but I SWEAR by the Mary Kay Oil-Free Eye Makeup Remover: http://www.marykay.com/skincare/lipeyecare/10089100/10089100/default.aspx


Slastena said...

Great topic, Heidi!
I use Clinique- simply because it comes with almost every bonus I get from them- I got like 50 tubes by now. Surprisingly, it does not irritate my allergy-prone eyes and I use lash curler before. So I am very happy with the results.
I used Alba Papaya cleanser in a past- and loved it. I am alittle weird about skincare- I love to trey new things. SO once I run out of something, I am excited about the opportunity to try something else. Luckily, my skin is pretty tolerant. Basics like Aveda SA oil and 10% BP stay the same though- can't do without.

AppGal said...

I used to be the type of person who would switch facial cleansers every time I ran out. Up until a few years ago, I had an AWFUL complexion and hadn't found my HG of cleansers :) Enter
brand! I haven't switched since, and that is saying a lot! They have several different cleansers, but my faves are the cleansing clay, hot pore scrub, & cleansing cream. It's a natural brand, so you can find it at Whole Foods.
This brand
is another favorite of mine. I use their facial creams and masks.

I like the Alba brand too. They have nice body butters & lotions!

Posey Ford said...

Hi Heidi! I've been eyeing the Alba skincare products for a while now, I've been a fan of their lip balm for a few months. I think I'm going to try it. Unlike Slastena, I hate trying new facial cleansers. I'm one of those if it's not broke don't fix it types. I used Olay Deep Cleanse line(in purple bottles) for years and then one day Target, CVS, Publix and Walmart all simultaneously stopped carrying the line. I was crushed! I seriously considered buying it online from a canadian store for 30 per product. But I didn't. I'm now a devoted user of Aveeno wash and Garnier toner. Now with makeup: I LOVE trying all different types and brands and colors. I buy a new mascara each time a visit the grocery store. I have sensitive contact-eyes and they need nearly new mascara to function without me having sight issues. Anyway great post!

Patina Cabachon said...

oh, i am so out of the loop when it comes to makeup.I use Mac and sometimes Carol's Daugher (lipgloss).I never have to worrry about it looking different on me when I try it on in the store then go out into the sunlight. Anyone ever experienced that horror? I use Mac's mascara primer and then Mac's Zoom lash. It has given me lashes that I never knew I had. As far as cleansers, I use the Mac wipes when I am being lazy and Philosophy cleanser and moisterizers. I have the craziest skin... i.e either too oily, too dry or tzone on given day. Philosophy has the right PH for my skin and my makeup looks flawless. I won't switch to any other brand because this has worked for me for years.

GingerSnap said...

Heidi, I am so glad you feel in love with this mascara as I have! Normally, I switch from mascara to mascara (being disappointed every time) but with THIS stuff, I am actually on my THIRD TUBE (yes - crazy - I know). I am in love with this product (and not to mention how easy and pain-free it is to remove!) As for facial washes I use the clinique foaming fash wash in the morning and I use Apricot Scrub in the evenings (need to exfoliate that skin!). Also, like you, I am an avid user/believer in Retin-A (can you say miracle drug???) It treats acne (which I still get from time to time - uh - I AM in my 20s you would think it would have stopped by now) AND its anti-aging! Thanks for the post :)

Cari (isnotfashion) said...

I love dior show for mascara and cetaphil as a cleanser.... http://isnotfashion.blogspot.com/

ina said...

hi heidi, thanks for welcoming me on your blog.
i have a HG cleanser, its purity from philosophy.i am using it for years now and have 2 bottles extra. so i dont run out.
mascara is a different story, i still have not found the perfect one.
i will try your suggestions.

FabulousFloridaMommy said...

Thank you for these posts, Heidi! I really enjoy all the information you share with us...thank you for taking the time to do it! :)

Anonymous said...

Hi - I use Kiss Me masacara - the loreal version is a knock off of the original cult/celeb favorite - and you do not have a two applicator wand. Just one coat and viola - beautiful lashes. Best cleanser on the market is La Prairie foam Cleanser. Smells yummy and is the best I have ever tried!

Emily said...

What a fun post! I have tried almost all of the mascaras that you listed!
Right now I am using Diorshow Iconic High Def Lash Curler. It's pretty good for the most part but every now and again I find it to be clumpy.
The last mascara I tried before Dior was Imju Fiberwig. It’s great for lengthening b/c it has microscopic fibers that hang to your lashes. Comes right off with warm water.
I live and die by the Clinique eye makeup remover in the purple bottle.
Fav cleanser is Bliss Steep Clean Cleanser. It’s milky and you can use it like a mask for a couple minutes and it will melt off the makeup.

HeidiG said...

Thanks for all the info and insight, everyone. I appreciate all the comments. I need to take some notes!

Emily - I tried the Fiberwig a couple of years ago and the DiorShow Iconic just recently - I liked the Iconic, but wish it had given me more oomph in my lashes.

Cari - I've never actually tried the regular DiorShow, but always wanted to. (was btwn that and YSL last time and went with YSL) But I think I may be pretty content with this mascara for now.