Maybelline Dream Matte Mousse

Dream Matte Mousse

Dream Matte Mousse

It’s been almost two years since I reviewed the Dream Liquid Mousse by Maybelline. In my review, I wasn’t super fond of the dewy look so I decided to try the Matte Mousse next time around — and I did. I’m nearing the end of my tub of Dream Matte Mousse and I think I’ll buy it again.

Now, it’s not a Photoshop finish, like the commercials would have you believe, but it does a nice job of smoothing everything out. My skin looks softer and the tone evens out. This isn’t the heaviest coverage I’ve ever had but it looks good, especially with a dusting of powder over the top. I prefer the matte look to that of dewy. However, the formula can feel a little heavy and oily sometimes. It’s because it feels that way that I know it’s still there six to eight hours later. It’s not a 24-hour product but it lasts plenty long for me.

The whipped texture is light and fluffy; although, I might like a pump better. I frequently get a bunch under my nails when scooping it out of the tub. Although the tub seems quite small and the glass is thick, one container lasted me far longer than I would have guessed. I’ve just now getting to the bottom but there’s still a lot of product left on the sides. I don’t remember exactly when I bought this but I’ve had it at least six months. Your mileage will vary if you wear your foundation heavier or more frequently.

I might consider going a shade darker next time. I find this easy enough to blend but light formulas can make my face look rounded. Ultimately, though, the smooth complexion gives me a boost of confidence and helps to highlight the shape of my face, rather than the imperfections.

Clean & Clear MORNING BURST Fruit Infusions Facial Hydrating Cleanser

Clean & Clear Morning Burst Fruit Infusions Facial Hydrating Cleanser

Clean & Clear Morning Burst Fruit Infusions Facial Hydrating Cleanser

When it was time to buy a new facial cleanser, I decided that maybe I would try something new. I have to hand it to Clean & Clear in that the entire Fruit Infusions line smells amazing. Seriously, amazing. I would have been happy with the scent of any of them; although, each one has a slightly different purpose.

The hydrating cleanser features pineapple, coconut, and açaí in a yellow pump bottle. It smells diving, really. I’m a big fan of coconut and pineapple and you can really smell those ingredients. I’m not sure what acai berry actually smells like and I can’t detect a lot of berry in the cleanser but I’m okay with that.

The pump bottle works well but it’s a little bulky when compared with similar products. On the bright side, its size and color make it easy to find in the shower, especially if you’re bleary-eyed in the morning. The pump dispenses the thick creamy cleanser almost too well. A full pump really gives me a lot of product so I try to only push it halfway down or so.

Because this cleanser is a cream, it feels a bit odd. I’m more a fan of foaming facial cleansers or gels. It doesn’t really lather as much as it spreads around and this makes my skin feel a little less clean but this may just be a weird personal habit. The bottle states that this contains strawberry seeds, which I assume are intended to be exfoliants. They are in there but there’s only ever one or two in each pump so it doesn’t feel very effective to that end. I would still use a daily toner or weekly exfoliator with this product.

At the end of the day, its effectiveness is the most important part and I am torn. I broke out a lot when I first switched to this cleanser and my skin felt greasy by the end of the night. After a few weeks, this has stopped, thankfully. I’m not dealing with any major break-outs. However, I feel like some of the Neutrogrena face washes I have used are just a bit more effective at clearing up my skin and in a shorter time frame.

In terms of hydration, I can’t complain. My skin feels soft — perhaps softer than usual — and hydrated enough but I always use a daily moisturizer so, even in the winter, my face isn’t as dry as other parts of my body.

So would I buy Clean and Clear Morning Burst Fruit Infusions cleanser again? Maybe. I’d probably like to try the other scents but I’m not sure if it’s worth the money if other products that I’ve used work at a better price.

Orly Nail Defense

Orly Nail Defense

Orly Nail Defense

When I decided to treat myself with a haircut and nail polish, I opted for the buy-2-get-1-clear-coat Sally’s had going for Orly products. I may have used some Orly color in the past but I hadn’t used either if their nail protection products. I opted for the Nail Defense because it’s designed to protect nails, bonds layers together and prevent breakage. As someone who’s nails frequently peel, this seemed like a good deal. Orly advertises this as a basecoate on its website but I figured I would use it for both the base and top.

I like this so far, especially because I got it for free. However, it has a leg up over the Sally Hansen strengthener I was using in a couple ways.

  1. It’s thinner and less gloppy. It’s super easy to use. My previous polish was even grew thicker, the longer I had it. I wound up tossing it well before the bottle was empty.
  2. It dries a lot faster. This is handy when I just want my nails clear but even moreso when I’m going with color and I’ve already had to wait for two layers of that to dry. I’m impatient so I like this. It also means it’s less likely that I’ll smudge or otherwise mess it up as I’m waiting for it to dry.
  3. It adds high shine.
  4. It doesn’t dry out around the edges and start peeling after a few days. This was a big problem with my Sally Hansen polish. It was really noticeable and I’d have to remove all the polish and start over. However, I can worry less because it’s much less noticeable as it begins to wear or chip off and, when it does, I can add another layer without it looking like layers upon layers of polish.

Although it’s not perfect, my nails are growing longer. I’d had a little bit of peeling that lead to breakage but only on one nail. This is exciting because my nails are on their way to actually reaching the ends of my fingertips. Then I’ll use the rest of my Sally Hansen stickers. So, as a basecoat, I can’t complain.

It’s not stellar as a topcoat. It’s shiny and smooth over color but chipping starts as soon as it would with any other topcoat and, really, without any at all. Perhaps I am just hard on my nails. However, the thinness means that maintenance is a little easier and maybe I can cover up those spots and prolong the color for a bit more.

The quick drying has me sold more than anything else and I’ll definitely be checking out more Orly products in the future.


Selsun Blue Deep Cleaning, Dandruff Shampoo

Selsun Blue Deep Cleaning, Dandruff ShampooAs the seasons change and the air dries out, I find myself having to care for my skin differently. This means more moisturizer, thicker creams and it’s back to anti-dandruff shampoo for me. I actually purchased the Selsun Blue Deep Cleaning, Dandruff Shampoo a while back, because it was a decent price at Target. I thought I might like it better than Head and Shoulders or Fructis’s anti-dandruff shampoo. It’s a new product and I probably wouldn’t have purchased it had I not seen the product.

Selsun Blue Deep Cleaning, Dandruff Shampoo comes in a blue bottle and is a clear gel with “micro-beads” for scrubbing. The beads themselves are soft and not scrubbable at all. Maybe they’re supposed to be the bursting type like in some body washes. All I know is, they’re useless.

That’s not to say that the product is bad as a whole; however, it’s also not as good as I’d like it to be. This shampoo works only if I use it every day. Things get ugly the day I stop using it. This is problematic for me because some days I like to use my good smelling shampoo and conditioner. The shampoo doesn’t smell bad just not especially good, either. It smells clean and not as feminine as I like to smell.

But when I stop using it for a day — bam! — flakes. Eww. I’ve used shampoos before that effectively stopped dandruff in its tracks and remained effective for at least a day (but usually more) so I could use another shampoo when I wanted. Come to think of it, Head and Shoulders smells better and offers shampoo/conditioners combos. Looks like I’m not a convert this time.

Another thing, the bottle has a ton of nooks and crannies and it may just be my hard water, but gunk likes to collect and grow there. Gross.

Celtic Complexion

Celtic Complexion is a company that focuses on natural solutions for sensitive skin and rosacea issues. Although my skin is not particularly sensitive, I am always looking for the best solution for my skin so when I had the opportunity to work with the company, I jumped on it.

One of the things I like about Celtic Complexion is that the packaging is charming. Jennifer Devlin, the founder of the company, is UK based and the logo and art are reminiscent of that heritage. It’s what some might call quaint. I hate to judge a book by its cover but I frequently do. Celtic Complexion passes, though. The products wouldn’t necessarily look out of place in a drug store. The packaging feels complete.

But unlike other drug store products, Celtic Complexion isn’t mass produced. Jennifer hand pours all the products herself so the textures and smells may vary from batch to batch. It is because of this very reason that I have to tell you to take any negatives in my review with a grain of salt because your mileage certainly can vary.

Love Your Skin Travel Kit

Love Your Skin Travel Kit

I received the Love Your Skin Travel set, which contains six weeks of moisturizer, sunscreen and calming serum, as well as the lip balm. I’ll start with the lip balm. It’s probably my least favorite product but simply because lemongrass and peppermint are both strong scents that I don’t necessarily love. I’m also not sure that they mix well together because they are so strong. Something a little more vanilla or nutty might have tempered out those strong scents for someone who isn’t as big of a fan or who wants something a little more overwhelming.

Smell aside, the balm comes in a small tin and you can use your fingers to apply it. It’s a bit waxy, like many balms. Because I wasn’t as fond of the smell, I found myself using it less than I would other moisturizing lip products but it didn’t seem to last quite as long as my Chapstick, especially as the weather becomes more dry.

I was most excited about the sunscreen in the travel set as I don’t have any light sunscreens and not all my moisturizers have sunscreen in them. This sunscreen offers SPF 22 which is pretty significant compared to many facial products. It is a light product that I was able to wear with my usual beauty routine without any problems. It’s supposed to be tinted but looks quite white to me. This isn’t a big deal at I’m quite white, too. LOL

The moisturizer was quite different from any I’d used before. It includes a ton of natural oils, ranging from coconut to jojoba to sandalwood and even including grapefruit oil. The texture is like a thin wax almost. It comes in a jar and the instructions say to dip your fingers in and rub the moisturizer between them to warm it, which will cause it to become more liquid-like. I expected the moisturizer to feel greasy because of its texture but was surprised that it didn’t. However, toward the end of the day my face did feel greasy. It can feel greasy if you use too much, though. I probably need a lighter/oil-free product because of my specific skin chemistry. This product was lightly scented. I could detect a slight sweetness to it, which I didn’t mind.

Calming Serum

Calming Serum

The calming serum was a product that especially interested me because my skin can sometimes become sensitive because of clothing or chafing. Although this product is intended for sensitivity caused by rosacea, broken capillaries and sun burned skin, I though I’d give it a try. The serum comes in a tiny bottle with a dropper applicator and the instructions say to use a few droplets to a clean face, with a moisturizer if you’d like. It’s a very thin liquid that’s slightly purplish but the color doesn’t transfer to skin, of course.

Ironically, I keep forgetting to use it when I do have sensitive skin but it’s definitely best for minor irritations as the bottle is small and the formula is difficult to apply to a broad area. With a product like this, I want to readily wet a cotton ball or Q-tip to apply it but the dropper isn’t ideal for that. I feel like using my hands results in most of the product winding up on the area where I first touch my skin and not so much elsewhere.

This one also has a stronger herbal scent that I don’t necessarily love, which has contributed to me using it less than I expected. I’m pretty unlikely to use products on my face, if I don’t love how they smell. This is personal preference, of course, and your serum may smell a little differently or not as strongly because of the hand pouring. In retrospect, this might be the type of product I’d be better using before bed so I could fall asleep and let it do its work without bothering me.

Celtic Complex products are definitely something to consider if you have trouble with big name facial care or if your skin is especially sensitive or you experience rosacea. None of the products contain parabens or synthetic fragrances. Instead, Jennifer relies on organic and non-toxic ingredients to produce her products. My experience was a toss up, due to my picky nature. However, the sunscreen is something every person should have in their arsenal and the Love Your Skin Travel Kit is a great introduction to the products, to see if they’ll work for you.