Vol.1: Beauty Claim-Buster!🤓

Hi Friends!

I thought it would be a fun and (unique?) series to start on my site. I want to feature some of my new-ish products in my collection and review them strictly by answering the product claims from the Brand themselves. 

These can be products that I love, those that I really like, or feel kind of “meh” about, and even products that decide to move forward to candidates “with more experienced skill sets” than me.

Job Hunting Probs, amirite?

Think of the product claims as a sort of benefit “checklist”, and we can see how my experience coincides. I’ll also add in notes on things that I noticed that were really horrific or really awesome that may not have been mentioned. Overall, I’ll try to keep this concise and informative!

Keep in mind, these are my experiences. I’m not a perfect “test subject” and product claims are often purposefully vague. The claim that a cleanser can “Improve the look of skin…” is broad and open-ended, and ultimately left to the user to determine if the change is seen or not. I think there’s also a psychological component to the cosmetic industry, kind of like, “Hey, wait, this cleanser really did improve the look of my skin come to think of it!”

See what I’m saying?

The sometimes fuzzy language seen on cosmetic labeling has more to do with the lack of FDA oversight more than anything (here in the USA, anyways!).

*Takes off Pharmacist hat*

 


**For the purposes of this post, I’ll list each claim. Then my response as a True or False statement. Remember, the statement isn’t truly “true” or “false”, I’m just explaining my experiences with each benefit the brand is suggesting can be seen with the product


Ciate London Watermelon Burst Hydrating Primer 

The Claim: “A lightweight, multitasking primer to hydrate, brighten, and improve skin’s texture—all while prepping for long-lasting makeup. Featuring watermelon extract droplets that activate upon contact to quench and energize the skin, the silky cooling pink base actively brightens, while refining pores and texture.”

from http://www.sephora.com

T or F? Mostly all TRUE! Hydration and brightening effect were seen right away–my face felt very plump and had a very healthy look to it, it also looked brightened from the slightly dewy look of the primer (not oily/wet).

As for improving my skin’s texture…….I can’t say I’m confident it does. It may help minimize some pores around the center of my face/near my nose during the wear, but not enough to confidently agree with this claim. I don’t know what the brand was implying but, just in case–I certainly can’t see any long term benefits so far from using this product in terms of “texture improvement”.

 

 

The Claim: Delicately watermelon scented, this unique aqua serum primer grips foundation for long-wear and that just-applied glow”

From http://www.sephora.com

T or F? True—but just one thing- The consistency of the primer is definitely water-based. Ciate uses the word “serum” to imply that it is more of a thin consistency, I personally would have used gel. I don’t know if that even matters, but I felt it was worth saying.

  • It does “grip” foundation— I’m thinking of the Milk Hydro Grip foundation, but the Ciate is not as intensely sticky as the Milk one. This one does leave you with some degree of tackiness, but not nearly as much as Milk and I find the staying power also superior.
  • just applied glow” —this is absolutely true. I would almost describe this as a comfortable softening, gloss-like look to the skin. I can/have worn without makeup and I have also used it as a daytime moisturizer- it super refreshing and a nice pick-me-up to start the day.
  • And yes, it is absolutely true that this primer smells like watermelon heaven— if you’re a watermelon lover like myself, prepare to be a fan.🍉🍉

 

So with these features, I won’t draw any final conclusions. This is simply me, as a consumer, sharing my thoughts and opinions with another consumer. I think it’s interesting for you to read over my reactions to the claims, and think about what YOUR thoughts are. Do you think the claims were sufficiently met? Do you think the product had enough claims? Were they too vague, too specific, etc.? If you’ve used it, what was your experience?

I love when we, as a beauty community, can continue to challenge and engage each other. Rather than creating posts like “here’s the product, I used it, I loved it..”, (which I still have and will post,—no shade or judgement!!!), I want to more purposefully try to TALK about the products.

So please, SHARE!! 😉


 

FYI: This Primer Retails for $28.00 USD for 40mL/1.35oz product at Sephora

 

Thank you for stopping by,

xo

Jena

 

 

 

 


FTC: This post is not sponsored and all opinions are honest and my own. No affiliate links used. Some statements were directly taken and sourced from http://www.sephora.com

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REVIEW: Herbivore Emerald CBD Glow Oil + Meet Sasha

REVIEW: Herbivore Emerald CBD Glow Oil  + Meet Sasha

Hey Friends & Happy Monday!

Another day, another skincare review!

This one might be, well……unpopular.

Herbivore is a brand I’m sure many of you are familiar with. Their skin and body products are minimal, yet gorgeously packaged with jewel-toned hues. As a result, the brand has a huge social media presence, so it’s no surprise that the beauty community seems to be all abuzz about this Seattle-born brand.

I actually ended up with a deluxe sample size of the Emerald Glow Oil as a GWP from Sephora, and I was SO excited to try it out.


Here’s a few Specs/Product claims:

  • Facial oil containing 100mg CBD + adaptogens 
  • Product claim per the Herbivore website the CBD in the oil can “soothe stressed-out skin in need of calm and relief from redness, irritation, and environmental stressors”.
  • Retails for $58.00 for 1oz/30mL bottle with dropper
  • **Because this product contains CBD, the Emerald oil specifically can only be purchased and shipped in the US only (this is on the Herbivore website – I’m not sure about other retailers such as Sephora, Beautylish, etc..)

 

Thoughts:

On a completely superficial level, the bottle and product itself is beautiful. The oil is a stunningly gorgeous green color that definitely catches the eye of any one who glances at it. I would say the hydration component is there, I woke up the next morning with some glow to my skin. I can’t speak for the “soothing” of my stressed out skin, however. Personally, I would not want to apply this in the morning, it would feel too bothersome. I put this on at bedtime immediately before going sleep.

**Also: I used as recommended, about 4-8 drops!

Here’s where my disconnect is: I really don’t think I like facial oils. I’ve never used them really. I love serums and I love good moisturizers of course, but oils are just another story I guess. They just make me feel like I’m trapped in my own face. Is that completely weird? I really can’t say that that’s a knock on this product specifically or face oils in general, but I really just feel very turned off and averse to them now. I would assume this is because they just feel too heavy. Oils aren’t really anything I can massage into my skin or get to “soak in”, they just kind of hang out on the top barrier.

Here’s my other gripe–the scent is just a little *too* on the nose. I’m not a prude y’all, I went to a party school for college. I just don’t particularly love for my face to smell like a joint.

Maybe there would be more long-term benefits to this one if I used it consistently– but honestly it is always an unpleasant experience! 

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On a much brighter (and cuter!) note, I got the sweetest Toy Poodle puppy about 3 weeks ago. I lost my other Poodle after over 16 amazing years, she’s still very much in my heart and I miss her more than words can express. Our new pup (Sasha) has helped us regain some joy again and we love her SO much already! I’ve been sharing photos of her on my IG, follow me if you aren’t already for more Sasha (and of course, beauty!) adventures.

@jj_beautyblog

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Has anyone else tried the Emerald oil?? Please share all your honest thoughts below– I’m so curious!! 

Thanks for reading!!

xo

Jena

 

 

 


FTC: This post is not sponsored and all opinions are honest and my own. No affiliate links used. 93af437cee67e8dfba31874e57ce63445fc3568d9d5710e95a

REVIEW: Natasha Denona Bloom Blush & Glow Palette

REVIEW: Natasha Denona Bloom Blush & Glow Palette

Hey Friends!

I picked up Natasha Denona’s Bloom Blush & Glow Palette during the Spring VIB Rouge sale a few weeks ago. I wanted to spend some time playing with the palette and getting a solid understanding of how it performs before putting a “formal” review together.

I definitely have some thoughts on it, so let’s dive in!


 

First, I’ll just go over the general specs & layout of this palette:

  • Retails for $55.00 USD
  • Contains 4 Large Pans with a mirror

Pan Contents: 

  • Two Cheek Products: 1 Cream and 1 Powder
    1. A Cream Blush in “Fuchsia” –described as a deep cherry red with a subtle gold shine
    2. A Duo Glow in Vibrant, Golden Coral (I use this like a blush topper)
  • Two Highlight (or Glow) Products: 1 Cream and 1 Powder
    1. Glow Cream Base in “Peach”
    2. Glow Extreme in “Light Rose” — described as a nude champagne shade

 

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First Thoughts:

The packaging is stunning and feels high-quality. The overall look of it is an eye-catching mix of vibrant pops of color and brilliant shine. The colors are a stunning variety of pinks, light golds, and peachy-pink tones.

I really appreciate the thought put into the design and layout of the palette– it contains 2 cream products and 2 powders. To shield the creams from getting contaminated with powder, ND added in a little plastic cover to keep them protected; I just find this to be a really awesome, problem-solving feature.

Suggested Usage Per ND:
-Apply the cream blush on the apples of the cheeks with a blush brush.
-Apply the Glow Cream Base on the upper cheekbones with your finger or a highlighting brush.
-Apply the Glow Extreme Powder on top with a highlighting brush or your finger for an extreme shine.
-Apply the Duo Glow Powder on top with highlighting brush or your finger for a multicolored shine.

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And Because I am a Visual Learner/Nerd Here’s the Steps Mapped Out:

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Swatching: Left with Flash, Right is Natural Light

From Top to Bottom: Duo Glow, Glow Extreme, Cream Blush, Glow Cream Base


 

Palette Performance:

As mentioned, this palette has a variety of cheek/face products and formulas that can be used together or separately to achieve the “ultimate glow”. I found the swatches to be absolutely gorgeous, and each product is designed to add a unique dimensional complexity to the overall look.

If I am being honest, the first few times I used this palette I found myself feeling a little bit overwhelmed– it definitely comes with a little bit of a learning curve. I also struggled to find the best application method for each formula– it was trial and error in finding tools that applied each product evenly and seamlessly.

It would be worth mentioning that I applied these products after other powder products (setting powder, bronzer, etc..). I didn’t have any issues with the cream products disrupting my foundation or looking cakey.


Palette Breakdown:

Glow Cream Base

  • This is probably the most disappointing product in the palette. While it does look gorgeous swatched and in the pan, I don’t really find that it had much impact when applied. It is a little bit more difficult to blend out evenly, and the overall effect it gives is a VERY subtle and colorless sheen. For me, I found a damp sponge to be the most ideal way to apply it. I am assuming the primary function of this cream is to act as a “glue” to the highlight products.

 

Cream Blush

  • This blush shade is INTENSE y’all! I would recommend using a light hand to very slowly build the pigmentation up using a damp beauty sponge, especially for fair to light skin tones. I found that gently tapping and pressing the cream in helps create the most even application. This was definitely the most intimidating product in the palette!
  • That being said, the color is absolutely beautiful and gives the most gorgeous brightening effect to the complexion. It would be such a perfect bold shade for special occasions or photographs, and it is very long-wear!

 

Glow Extreme

  • This highlight is really pretty and easy to work with–I use my normal highlight brush from Real Techniques to apply it. The neutral champagne tone it has is gorgeous and versatile, you could make this work with warm and cooler-toned makeup looks.
  • You can definitely build the intensity, and it doesn’t have a chunky or glittery look on the skin. It does have some potential to accentuate texture/pores, so I would use a little bit more sparingly if this is something that bothers you.

 

Duo Glow

  • I really enjoy using this as a blush topper. It adds a gorgeous, multi dimensional sheen and peachy/coral glow that I LOVE. This would probably be the product I would reach for to use on its own to give my blush a little extra pop of glow. Most of the time, I don’t feel the need to apply any additional highlight if I have this one on.
  • It is buildable and easy to work with–I apply it the same way I would any other blush with this brush (for a more subtle sheen, a highlighting brush would work too!). The formula is also superb– it is pure buttery, velvet deliciousness!

 

Final Thoughts:

This palette is no doubt excessive and pricy. It can be a little bit impractical, as I have to use different tools to apply each individual product.

Do I think it is a collection necessity? No.

***HOWEVER***

This product is definitely geared toward blush/highlight enthusiasts, or makeup lovers that want a very specialized face palette for their collection. It takes some time and effort to work with, which is fun and really appealing for those interested in expanding their makeup horizons. I do think you can spend the time layering all the products together, or you can pull it out for individual use to accent other blushes/highlights.

The palette has some gorgeous appeal to it, and I am definitely excited to experiment with the formulas more and more! For me, it was worth the extra spend.


 

DISCUSSION TIME:

What do y’all think of this palette? Do you plan to purchase it? If you did pick it up, please share your thoughts!!

Thanks for Reading!

xo

Jena


 

FTC: This post is NOT sponsored. All thoughts and opinions are honest and my own. All products mentioned were purchased by myself. Some links are affiliate.

Two Skincare Products Doing It All

Two Skincare Products Doing It All

Hey Friends! 

I just have a short and sweet post today about some important developments in my skincare routine! 

All products mentioned are linked below!


I just wanted to come on and chat a little bit about my new(ish) additions to my skincare routine. I’ve been pretty diligent with taking care of my skin each day, and making sure that, at the very least, I’ve removed my makeup before going to sleep. Since becoming more and more consistent with my skincare, I’ve come to enjoy taking off my makeup and giving my skin some much needed care and attention.

The specific step that I believe has made the most dramatic improvement in my skin is using a toner, both in the morning and evening. Prior to incorporating toner, I felt as if my skin was unbalanced and not getting the full potential benefits of my prescription treatment and moisturizer. A few months ago, I really decided I would be consistent with using my Thayer’s Witch Hazel as a toner product after cleansing.

**Note: I use this by soaking a cotton pad and sweeping it over my face 1-2 times. I also sometimes use this more like an essence, by pouring some in my hands and gently pressing the liquid in to absorb. 

Photo of My Current Bottle, a back-up, and my back-up’s back up!! 😉

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I can’t really describe how dramatically this has helped my complexion. My skin is noticeably smoother and less prone to irritation. I also feel like it has helped with texture, as well as keeping my lines/wrinkles somewhat at bay while I’m in between Botox treatments (I have an appointment Monday ;-)!!!)

I can remember taking about a 2-3 week break from the toner after running out and not repurchasing. I really didn’t think too much about skipping it until I saw my skin begin to take a turn back to look more dull and my pores more visible. I also felt like my skin defaulted back to an overly-dry “mode”, and I was seeing dry patches pop up. Since then, I have kept this stuff stocked in my collection and I’ll never go back!

I was so blown away by the benefits I was seeing from using a toner, I  decided to take the routine to the next-level by incorporating Caudalie’s Grape Water Spray— which also has toner-like qualities to hydrate and soothe. The “grape” ingredients in this mist are extracted from grapes in the Bordeaux, France wine region.

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The grapes multi-task in providing extra hydration, as well as reducing skin sensitivity (it is recommended for the most sensitive skin types/conditions, such as eczema.) If I am feeling irritated from cleansing or doing a new face mask, I will always pull out this guy to immediately soothe and calm my skin. This spray just feels SO gentle and refreshing! I think that it works hand-in-hand with the Thayer’s to re-balance my skin to take in the benefits of moisturizer/serums. Because I have seen the marked benefits from using it, I only use the Caudalie for skincare–I do not use this as a makeup setting spray. I’ve just seen such a marked improvement by using these two very effective (and very gentle!) products in tandem.

Overall, using the 2 “toners” has significantly increased my hydration and overall look of my skin. I’m also seeing less sensitivity from my prescription treatments and daily serums. Toning has basically just helped “mesh” all the products together, and I’ve been starting to see significant benefits from everything in my routine! I like to think of toner as the “glue” to your skincare products — it just enhances and elevates your whole skin game!

 

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If you feel like you’re in a skincare “rut”, and you aren’t seeing the benefits you should be from your products, I highly recommend evaluating your use of toners! I just can’t say enough good things about using the 2 products together.

 

I’m SO curious now:

What are y’alls thoughts on using toners, and what are your favorites? Feel free to share below! 

 

Thank you so much for reading! 😉

xo

Jena


 

FTC: This post is NOT sponsored. All opinions are honest and my own, and I purchased all products myself. Some links are affiliate — thank you for your support!

REVIEW: GLOW RECIPE Watermelon Glow Pink Juice Moisturizer

REVIEW: GLOW RECIPE Watermelon Glow Pink Juice Moisturizer

Hey everybody! 

I’m here today to chat about a moisturizer I’ve been trying out a little over a week now, the Watermelon Glow Pink Juice Moisturizer from GLOW RECIPE.

I got a little 0.3oz/10mL sample size of this guy from Sephora, I’ve been SO excited to give it a try for months now. I haven’t had the courage to purchase anything from the brand –I was still a little skeptical and nervous to make the investment in another possible skincare disappointment.

Image of my Sample:

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Product Specs: 

  • Standard size comes in 2oz/60mL bottle and retails for $39.00 USD 
  • Mini size is also available as 25mL bottle for $21.00 USD
  • Can be purchased at Sephora or GLOW RECIPE’S official website

The whole GLOW RECIPE brand has taken social media by storm, as their products are beautifully packaged and Instagram-worthy. I’m a huge fan of all things watermelon– I LOVE anything that promises to have a watermelon scent or flavor. You can’t help but notice that this moisturizer has the same exact scent of a watermelon jolly rancher, which I love. For me, the scent isn’t super overpowering and it does dissipate shortly after you apply. However, if you are very sensitive to smells in your skincare this could be a pass for you.

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Image Source: Sephora.com

 

The consistency of this moisturizer is very thin and water-based. It doesn’t have a creamy or rich feeling to it at all — I would almost describe it as a very lightweight gel. Of all the gel/water based moisturizers I’ve tried, I think this one might be the most thin. Calling this product a watermelon “juice” moisturizer is a very accurate name to classify the viscosity.  It does have a very light pink-colored hint to it as well.

Images of the Product’s Texture/Consistency: 

 

 

 

Per the GLOW RECIPE website, it is suitable for dry, sensitive, normal, and oily/combo skin types. It claims to hydrate, brighten, soften, and smooth the skin.

Some highlighted ingredients:

  • Watermelon Extract
  • Hyaluronic Acid
  • Antioxidants

 


My Thoughts: 

I’d first like to point out that skin is currently on the dry side due to my prescription retinol use (most of the time my skin is relatively normal).

That being said, I do not feel that this moisturizer provides me with adequate hydration when used alone. Once I get it applied evenly in a thin layer, it ultimately just ends up feeling sticky and I don’t feel as if it is adding much moisturization to my skin. Even when I added more product to try and build it up, it just got more tacky and didn’t seem to fully absorb. Each time I used this moisturizer, I really felt the need to go in with an additional product to feel like my skin was properly hydrated. I did notice a very slight stinging sensation that quickly went away in areas near my eye/temple on the first few uses. So far, it has not caused any new break outs on me.

Unfortunately, this one will be a pass for me to purchase in the full-size– my skin is just too dry at the moment.

  • If you have oily skin this one might be a great, lightweight choice to try out (it is an oil-free formula)
  • For normal skin, I think this would work best in an AM skincare routine (you might need more moisture in your PM routine.).

I don’t think this product is “bad” or a poor choice, it just isn’t a fit for my skin situation at the moment. I have to stress that every person’s experience is unique. If you like this product- I LOVE IT! I think it has some really nice ingredients, Sephora considers GLOW RECIPE to be a “clean” skincare line. I’m still interested in this brand, so I hope to find a product that is better suited for my skin type.

To Summarize, here’s my personal PROS/CONS:

PROS

  • Beautiful packaging
  • I love the watermelon scent
  • Does provide my skin with a radiant glow
  • Oil-free with a “clean” ingredient seal from Sephora

CONS

  • Not enough hydration for dryer skin types –I had to use an additional product
  • I did experience slight stinging/irritation
  • Comes with a high-end price tag ($39.00 USD for 60mL)
  • Dry down is sticky/tacky on me

 


 

I’m super curious to hear your thoughts if you’ve tried this one out! Was it a PASS or PURCHASE for you? What else have y’all tried from GLOW RECIPE? Also, if you have dry skin what are your go-to moisturizers?

Please share all your thoughts/suggestions in the comments!! 

 

Thank you so much for reading!

xo

Jena


 

 

FTC: This post is not sponsored, all opinions are honest and my own. Product came in a value set purchased by myself. No affiliate links used.