Friday, January 23, 2015

1,000 Mascaras No. 30: Blinc Mascara Amplified

Post by Meagan

Picture from Blinc website

Blinc's Mascara Amplified is one of those mascaras that claims to form tubes around each individual eyelash, buildable, lengthening--yada, yada, yada…  You know what?  It's true. 

I really, really like this mascara.  It's lives up to almost all of its claims.  It is buildable because the formula isn't too wet, so it can be re-applied.  It doesn't run or clump.  Unlike so many tubular mascaras, it doesn't flake or smudge.  Amazingly, the fibers don't gunk up the long, full brush.  The brush is firm enough so that the formula spreads over the lashes evenly--leaving them noticeably longer but not so long that I look like I'm headed to the club.

Blinc mascara in black on the left; also sporting Anastasia brows from this post

And taking it off? No big deal, at all.  Warm water and a little pressure and the tubes just slide off the lashes.  The only drawback is that when it is removed, it leaves a little residue, little flecks of black, on my face.  I fixed this by going back over my lashes with a cotton swab and a bit of remover.  My favorite way to use Blinc's formula is to apply it over a regular, volumizing formula.  This way I get the volume of a regular formula with the lengthening of the tubes. 

Bottom Lash Line: Blinc's Mascara Amplified is an overall winner.  Bonus?? Blinc is cruelty free.  Win and win. You can read a previous review on Blinc's non-Amplified mascara here.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

How to Get Great Brows with Anastasia Tinted Brow Gel

Post by Meagan

I'm obsessed with eyebrows.  With very little effort, they can completely change your look.  (Read all about our thoughts on eyebrows here.) To that end, I've tried so many formulas of eyebrow color--pencil, gel, wax, powder.  I have my favorites in each medium, but Anastasia's Tinted Brow Gel is definitely one of my new go-tos.  

Eyebrows enhanced with Anastasia Brow Gel in Espresso

I bought it a while back, but never seemed to have the time in the morning to give it a try.  Unlike waxes, the applicator is a spoolie (like mascaras).  Unlike other gels, the formula isn't clear and the application seemed like it could get really messy really fast.  Solution?  I use a slanted eyeliner brush to apply the tinted gel in short, hairlike flicks.  The gel then dries leaving my brows full, in place and no flaking. 

The gel stays all day and yet it comes off easily with soap and water.  The only drawback is probably more operator error.  I have to be conscious of making the hairlike strokes so that my brows don't look stenciled on.  I don't mind that super-clean, stylized look, but it's not what I want everyday.

This gel comes in seven colors and Anastasia does not test on animals.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Petunia Skincare Derma Roller

Post by Beth
PR Sample

I won’t lie here.  I was a little afraid when I was invited to try the Petunia Skincare Derma Roller.  I mean, look at it!  It looks like a medieval torture device!  But I am ever the intrepid beauty blogger, so I gave it a roll.

What is it supposed to do?

Micro needle therapy helps stimulate collagen, a type of protein responsible for making skin elastic and retain its firmness. With continued use, you are supposed to see skin become tighter, wrinkles filled in, and the overall skin texture evened out.  When used on the body it is supposed to smooth cellulite, and fade stretch marks.

See?  Scary!

So the deal is, you roll it over the area in question, in my case, my face, once every 3-4 weeks, rolling in every direction at least 10 times; vertically, horizontally, and diagonally. Apply slight pressure. You should avoid rolling the delicate areas under the eye. Or on acne, because, ouch.

The ouch factor was a major concern for me here. Of-course, as soon as I got this, I opened and tried it out on my hand (you would too, don’t look at me like that), and it hurt.  I wasn’t down for pain, so I bought some numbing cream off  of amazon. I left it on for about 10 minutes.  While waiting for the numbing cream to work, I commenced the dermal roller cleaning process.

Petunia Skincare is all over making sure you clean their derma roller properly, which makes sense, since you are piercing your skin with it, which could introduce bacteria into your skin.

So here is their recommended cleaning protocol:

Step 1: Pour rubbing alcohol into roller container and submerge roller. Let both, roller and container, disinfect in the alcohol for 5 minutes.

Step 2: Pour out rubbing alcohol and run container and roller under hot water.

Step 3: Fill sink with hot water, add a tablespoon of bleach, then place roller and container in. Leave for 5 minutes.

Step 4: Take roller and container out, rinse with cold water, and then dry it off. Place roller back in container.

Soaking the roller

I’ll be honest here, I just soaked it in alcohol for 10 minutes and used hot water to rinse.  So far, I have not succumbed to any flesh eating diseases of the face.

Also, it should go without saying, but do not share your roller with others.  Gross.

The numbing cream didn’t completely numb my face, but it took enough of the edge off to make the experience bearable. It didn’t take very long to do my face. I started with a clean face and I washed again afterward to make sure all the numbing cream was gone and then I followed my normal skincare regime.  I have experienced no adverse effects from using the Petunia Skincare Derma Roller.

It takes a few months of use to see results, and my test period for this item was one month, so I can’t comment on effectiveness at this time, but I did take a before picture and I will follow up with results in about 3-4 months.  Stay tuned!!

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Today's Tidbit: Fluoride Shouldn't be Taken Lightly

Fluoride is probably the most controversial ingredient in toothpaste, and while many eco-friendly brands make a fluoridated version, it's an ingredient that shouldn't be taken lightly.  A waste product of the phosphate fertilizer industry, fluoride is a known carcinogen, a neurotoxin, and an endocrine disruptor.  Modern research doesn't support the idea that it reduces risk of cavities, and with so many states adding fluoride to the water, most people just don't need it. (page 94)

Gilbert, Sara. The Imperfect Environmentalist: A Practical Guide to Clearing Your Body, Detoxing Your Home, and Saving the Earth (without Losing Your Mind). New York: Bellantine Trade Paperbacks, 2013. Print.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Today's Tidbit: Toxic Ingredients Applied to Skin Bypass Liver Enzymes

To varying degrees, all carcinogens and other toxic ingredients in personal-care and beauty products are absorbed through your skin, directly into your blood, and then circulate all over your body.  These ingredients bypass the detoxifying enzymes in your liver that protect you from toxins in food.  That means the harmful chemicals that you apply to your skin are much more toxic, and pose greater cancer and other risks, than if you ate them. (page 6-7)

Epstein, Samuel S., and Randall Fitzgerald. Toxic Beauty: How Cosmetics and Personal-care Products Endanger Your Health, and What You Can Do about It. Dallas, TX: Benbella, 2009. Print.