Friday, January 30, 2015

NARS Valhalla Eyeshadow -Spring 2015

I used to wear peach eyeshadow a lot years ago and this new shade from NARS reminded me how much I liked it.

Valhalla is part of the Spring collection . It's very shimmery pale peach that adds a nice wash of color to lids . It's subtle but looks lovely all over the lid with a deeper liner and also as an inner corner shade. It's the type of color that instantly brightens.

NARS Spring is all about the nudes and neutral beiges and  their new lipstick Liguria is a perfect complement to this if you want a more "natural" look.  ( That review is here. )

NARS Valhalla Single Eyeshadow  is $ 25 and is available now at , February 1st at  department stores and Sephora .  

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Burt's Bees Squeezable Beeswax Lip Balm

Love's Burt's Bees Beeswax Balm ? Like your lip balm is a squeeze tube ? Now you can have both.

Burt's Bee's introduce's Squeezable Beeswax Lip Balm. It's the same formula we all know & love, but smoother and softer and in a slant tip , squeeze tube.

Retail is $ 3.99 and it'a available now. 

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

L'Oreal Infallible Pro Last Lipcolor

Long wear lipsticks, good ones , have been a hard to come by. Most are dry , feel uncomfortable, tugging on lips and look blah due to the dry consistency.

L'Oreal's new Infallible Pro Last Lipcolor is a welcome launch if you're looking for a long wearing lip.

The pigments are very full and rich with one stroke coverage. It feels good on lips , no stiff, tight feel.  It doesn't take long for the color to set and dry down , then you use the clear stick balm on the opposite side of the wand to add moisture.  The clear balm is nicely moisturizing and leaves a hint of shine but not a gloss.

I went about 4 hours including drinking and light snacking before I saw any wear in the color and it was just a bit. After 6 hours it was faded far more but a stain was still visible. Everyone's wear time will vary . I did need to reapply the balm every hour to hour and half to feel comfortable but I was inside and out in 35 degrees- lip balm weather.

Colors shown are Captivated By Cerise and Toujours Teaberry .

Retail is $ 12.99

Monday, January 26, 2015

Shisedo Perfecting Stick Concealer

Looking for a new concealer ? One that really covers and lasts? Coming soon from Shiseido is Perfecting Stick Concealer.

This new concealer has  full coverage and feels a little like foundation but it's not heavy or overdone and blends easily.   It's also emollient making it a nice under eye choice but isn't greasy or nor does it have any oil in it.  

It does a bang up job on dark spots too, covering them completely.  The tube is a nice size at .17 oz , so should last awhile. 

Shiseido Perfecting Concealer Stick is $ 25 ,  comes in 6 shades and will be available in February. 

Shade shown is Natural 33 . 

Friday, January 23, 2015

Joya Snarkitecture Secret Souvenir Candle

I can't decide if this is cool or  too kitschy but I like it either way .

Niche fragrance and candle house Joya  and architecture company Snarkitecture have  hidden a NYC "treasure " in  each of their Snarkitecture Secret Souvneir candles. As the candle is burned down  a Empire State Building, Chrysler Building or Statue of Liberty  statue is revealed. This would make a  cool, albeit quite  expensive  souvenir gift to a long distance Manhattan loving friend or exile .  

The candle is scented with water lily, tulip, autumn moor grass , cucumber and blonde woods , measures 3"x4 "  and is $ 120 at 

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Garnier Ultra Lift Miracle Sleeping Cream Night & Miracle Sleeping Eye Cream

Our skin works to heal itself at night and to assist in this, more companies are doing products that are meant to be worn while we sleep .  Garnier 's new Ultra Lift Miracle Sleeping Cream  and Miracle Sleeping Cream Anti Age Anti Fatigue Eye Cream are two new entries. 

Ultra Lift Miracle Sleeping Cream is a thick gel/cream for the face to help moisturize  and decrease fatigue .  In the pot when you first touch it, it bounces back, jello like . A small amount goes a long way with this and as it blends into your skin it absorbs quickly with no greasy feel but skin  feels immediate hydrated and smoothed.  In the AM skin still feels moisturized as well as plumped and very smooth. I haven't used it long enough to speak of any anti- aging results but for skin in need of a moisture boost, I like this. 

Garnier means this to be almost a sleeping mask with technology that is said to help hold this onto skin so ingredients have time to work.  Active ingredients include : LHA, for radiance, Adenosine, to fight the signs of aging, extract of Albizia, to combat fatigue, hyaluronic acid for  extremely hydration , extract of Ruscus, which boosts skin’s micro circulation, jojoba and lavender essential oils.  There is a light floral fragrance . Stronger in the jar than on your skin. Once on I didn't notice  it.  

Ultra Lift Miracle Sleeping Anti Age Anti Fatigue Eye Cream is a mainly a gel. It has a lot of slip and good moisture in there as well. It smoothes easily on the eye area and has been doing a nice job of keeping my drier eyes hydrated. My one concern with this is the inclusion of denat. alcohol on the ingredients. It's there most likely to give this slip but it can be drying or irritation and not really something I like to see in eye creams.   Other ingredients include caffiene, adenonsine, glycerin albizia bark extract .

Garnier Ultra Lift Miracle Sleeping Cream & Eye Cream are available now.   Night Cream is  $ 16.99 and Eye Cream  is 14.99 ( prices approx.)

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Schwartzkopf Essence Ultime Omega Repair & Moisture Shampoo

Ready for some salon worthy haircare at non salon prices ? Schwarzkopf, a brand used in salons and also one you might know from their drugstore Got2Be line, has a  new large product range exclusively at Wal Mart- Essence Ultime & Stylist Ultime.  Look for the bottles' with Claudia Schiffer on them , she's  a brand consultant and has good hair.

  There are four categories within the line- Omega Repair & Moisture, Biotin Volume & Vitality, Satin Frizz Control and Diamond Color &  Radiance. With my hair needing a  bit more moisture now that it's long I went with the Omega Repair and Moisture shampoo /conditioner duo and I came away very impressed. Omega Repair uses pearl essence, oils , hydrolyzed keratin and panthenol for hair health but it is not sulfate free.

The duo  did a fabulous job. My hair was soft, full, flowy but not flyway and not weighed down.  It was well conditioned and the area where I have pesky split ends looked a little better. While I still needed my leave in, I needed a bit less.  The shampoo lathers lightly but cleans well and the conditioner is thick enough to get a hold on hair.

There is a leave in conditioner , 11 in 1 Beautifier that is now on my to buy list  and I had great results also using their Crystal Shine & Hold Heat Protect Spray from the styliste Ultime line before blow drying. This has light hold, protects and adds shine without being sticky or heavy. It can be used on dry hair pre -curling or straightening as well ( and you know that before you flat iron you always need heat protection right? )

I don't believe in skimping on hair care but it's also tough to shell out  $ 20- $ 30 on my favorite shampoos. Essence Ultime is $ 6.97 per product and performs  as well as some  expensive brands. That's a deal I can get behind.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Maybelline Fit Me! Matte +Poreless Foundation

The Fit Me!  line from Maybelline gets a Matte +Poreless addition. The original line is a good one and for those of us with oily skin, Matte +Poreless is even better.

The foundation comes in the same  type bottle as the original and the shade numbers match as well. Shown is my shade- 115.

Basically I love this. It's very matte but not too dry feeling, nor is it super flat looking.  Coverage is light to medium, more medium and buildable. It blends well and leaves  a little time before setting to get that blending in. The liquid is thin but not too runny and does not settle into lines etc.  and fills in pores nicely.

You'll need concealer for any large acne areas or  very dark areas , but healing spots or light areas of discoloration this covers pretty well.

Fit Me! Matte +Poreless  is  almost the equal of many higher end foundations. One   thing I see in comparison is that this does oxidize slightly. I love when a great makeup choice is available at an easy on the wallet price point. If you need a solid matte  foundation choice , this is a worthwhile purchase.

There is also a coordinating pressed powder. I haven't tried that yet, but I love the original Fit Me! pressed powder  and more matte is good by me.

Maybelline Fit Me! Matte +Poreless Foundation is available now in 12 shades along with 8 shades of powder.

Friday, January 16, 2015

NARS All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation

New NARS  and a new foundation ? It's a good day in beauty land.

NARS is bringing out their first full coverage liquid foundation- All Day Luminous Weightless.

As claimed, the coverage here is very full. Skin is perfected and flaws mostly concealed along with any redness.  While it does feel light in the bottle and on your face, it also has a slight heaviness to it as you apply, if that makes sense. It's not as thin as some recent foundations but not a thick cream either.  Luminous Weightless applies and blends easily but it also sets fast.  Once on , your skin is covered but still skin like. Not caked or spackled.  It's  healthy and glowy , but there is no shine or "glow" in the foundation itself.

The formula is semi matte, leaning more dry and matte but not flat. I  did find that it settled  a bit in one or two areas, mainly along the nasolabial lines. My skin right now is normal to oily in the T Zone. Oilier skins will find this works best along with oily to normal. If you're drier you'll  need to prep well with moisturizer  and/or primer or BB .

The foundation comes in 20 shades ( shown is Light 2 Mont Blanc)  and  is paraben, oil, alcohol, SPF and fragrance free .

NARS All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation is $ 48 and available now at NARS online &  boutiques.  Feb. 1st at  department stores and Sephora 

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Clinique Foaming Sonic Facial Soap

Love your Clinique Sonic Cleansing Brush ?  Now you can have a cleanser made just for use with it.

Clinique's new Foaming Sonic Facial Soap is a cream/mousse like formula that not only cleanses but adds moisture . It' a heavy  but gentle cleanser and you don't need a  lot.  The cleansing agent is derived from Coconut Oil, glycerin is there for  moisture and caffeine and sucrose help with calming skin.

This did a solid job of cleansing, as advertised. I do think it might too hydrating for oilier skins though. After use my currently normal to oily skin was soft and I felt as if I didn't even need much in the way of moisturizer.  This would also be great for use on it's own if you don't have a sonic brush.

Clinque  Foaming Sonic Facial Soap is $ 19.50

You can take a kook at my post on the Sonic System Purifying Cleansing Brush here .

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Smashbox Photo Filter Powder Foundation

Smashbox already has one of the top liquid foundations out there with Halo and their newest intro lands them in top powder foundation contention. The new Photo Filter powder foundation is a minor miracle for your face. It instantly smoothes and perfects .  It's soft focus lighting in a foundation.  One pass with the  included sponge applicator gets you this ( you could use a brush also).

The coverage is medium and buildable and I didn't feel the need for concealer over or under it.

 While this is a powder and therefore dry it's not as dry as many.  It has a creamy feel on  skin  and doesn't sit on your face, settle into pores or accent lines  , something some people have an issue with when it comes to powders.  Me, I love powder foundations and if you have oily skin they are especially great . This is one though that will work for those with drier skin,  due to that creamy , easy glide finish especially when prepped with moisturizer  or primer .

The wear time is long  and I got little oil breakthrough , but  I am far less oily now than in Summer . I still have oily areas, mainly the nose, but it's less. So that may differ later. It seems like it will have good oil control built in.

The  included sponge is double sided per Smashbox. I felt only a little difference and noticed only a slight difference in coverage with either side. The "velvety " side provides sheerer coverage they say, and I did find it to be slightly more sheer than the smooth side.

Shade shown is 4 . There are 10 shades available.

Smashbox Photo Filter Powder Foundation is $ 42 at Sephora  

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Gel Cream & Eye Cream

The new Hydro Boost line from Neutrogena is  first for the brand, a product brought  to us from the Asian market.

These  are lightweight gel-creams  that pack moisture into a light formula, utilizing purified  hyaluronic acid to give skin hydration.

 For  face,  the moisturizer comes in  regular ( Water Gel)  and Extra Dry Skin Gel- Cream.  I had the extra dry to try which worried me a little as I have normal skin right now that's been a little breakout prone with heavier moisture when I've tried. But I gave it a shot and found that the lightweight claim is very true. It glides on easily , sinks in fast and you don't feel  any residue or tackiness . It's barely there . But after its on  you realize your skin  feels good, soft and  hydrated but not overly so. The next morning my skin looked nicely plumped. I will say I am not sure that this would be enough moisture for extra dry skin. Maybe just  dry or normal to dry.

The eye gel -cream  felt/worked much the same . At first I thought it was so  light feeling that how could this possibly work ? But I realized that my eyes don't feel as dry as they usually do , so there must be something going on here. This  is a nice one to use especially in AM as it will work well under makeup  without waiting for it to set in.

For those who need moisture but want lightness, these do just that.  Note that these do have fragrance if you have issues with that. It's not very strong  but it's there.

Neutrogena Hydro Boost range is available now and retail is 18.99 each at their website. Drugstore/Target prices may vary.

Monday, January 12, 2015

A New Look

Later this month will be the 8th Anniversary of The Beauty Alchemist. To celebrate it's gotten a much needed makeover . I loved my old look and it was hard to part with it but a fresh, modern take is a good thing.

I have to thank my dear friend and graphic designer ( also food blogger/author) Kathy , not only for her design but her infinite patience  with me.

I also have to thank readers, for staying with me and taking a moment out of your time to pop over here and see what's new.  I love doing this blog , that hasn't waned  and I hope you enjoy it too.

So what do you think ? Love it ? Not so much ? Let me know .