Saturday, March 16, 2013

Yes to Tomatoes Daily Pore Scrub- February Beauty Army

Sample- dinky foil packet
Full-sized- $9.99 for 4 oz

I’ve used several things from the Yes to Tomatoes line and liked them all so I was excited to get this. I’ve actually been meaning to try it so it was nice to get to try a sample without having to buy the full-sized thing. The whole Yes to Tomatoes line is mostly natural products. They use salicylic acid that’s naturally derived from tomatoes (hence the name). This particular product also has ginger root and bisabolol (whatever that is) to help reduce redness. This scrub is also sulfate free and paraben free which I have been into lately.

Even though this says it’s a daily scrub, I didn’t use it every day.  I use my Olay Pro-X cleansing brush (which exfoliates gently) every other day so I really don’t feel the need to use an exfoliating scrub more than once a week. This scrub uses ground up bamboo to exfoliate. I don’t know how I feel about that. I feel like this is kind of along the same lines as the St. Ives Apricot Scrub with the ground up apricot pit that rips your face apart. Okay not literally but those types of irregular, rough granules are not good for your skin. If I exfoliate I would rather use little microbeads that have a smooth surface and are gentler on my skin. Besides the fact that the exfoliants are harsh, they are also quite highly concentrated, which adds up to a super harsh scrub that is way too much for my sensitive skin. Besides that, the scrub only lasted two uses so I really couldn’t tell you if it did anything for my skin. My skin certainly felt quite soft and clean, it didn’t make my face tight or anything. It doesn’t have any smell that I could discern.

So overall, this was to harsh for my skin, even once a week. If your skin is super non-sensitive and hearty then this might be a good weekly or bi-weekly exfoliator to try but I can’t imagine anyone being able to use this every day. Its just to harsh for that.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Sebastian Professional Potion 9 Styling Treatment- January Glossybox

Sample was 1.7 oz
Full-sized is $19 for 5.1 oz through Sebastian Professional Salons (or Ulta)

This styling cream is a very unique orange color. It’s a cream gel that smells like coconuts and tropical breezes. This is a pump applicator so I just used the amount that came out with a pump. It seemed just right for my hair but someone with shorter or longer hair would need to adjust accordingly. The directions say to work into damp hair blow dry or air dry for conditioned smooth hair. I used this in my damp hair and let it air dry. I was impressed with how smooth and shiny it was. The next morning it was still very soft and shiny and it didn’t make it any more greasy than normal. After using it every day for a couple weeks I still really like it. It’s a good leave-in conditioner/smoothing serum/shine serum. Just an FYI, if you have super fine hair and this is too heavy for it they do have a Potion 9 Lite as well that you could try.

Unfortunately it doesn’t matter how much I liked this stuff because I’m not sure I’m going to be able to buy it. It’s a salon brand so you have to get it through the salon. There are no salons anywhere near me. After doing some more online research I did find it at Ulta. You can’t buy it online but if you’re lucky enough to live near an Ulta that carries this you can buy it there. I have an Ulta about an hour and a half from me so next time I’m in that direction I plan to check it out and see if they carry it. I did find some on Ebay and Amazon so if you’re interested check that out but just a warning, most of them are way more expensive than the regular price. 

Thursday, March 14, 2013

GG Gatsby Raise Volume Shampoo- February Beauty Army

Sample- dinky packet
Full-sized- $14.99 for 8.4 oz

Pic from

I was excited to try this because I have been doing some research about sulfates and how bad they actually are for your hair and why you shouldn’t use them. Basically sulfates are the things in most shampoo, conditioner, body wash, hand soap, and basically everything that lather up and clean you. What they do though, is strip your hair and body and whatever else of its natural oil and moisture. So in the long run they are bad for your hair and skin and whatever else. Unfortunately, my experience with sulfate-free shampoos have been less than stellar. I haven’t yet been able to find one that actually cleans my hair. This one might be an option.

This was quite a small sample and I only got two uses out of it (although I could probably have gotten three out if I’d been more frugal. . .I feel like I say that about everything) so I can’t really 100% say that its wonderful but from the amount that I used it, I loved it. It’s a clear non-lathering shampoo (although it does actually lather a little) that smells wonderful. As I was washing my hair with it today I was trying to think of how I would describe the smell of it but I really just can’t. The best I can say is that it’s a nice fruity smell but also a little flowery. I can’t really get any more descriptive than that. I don’t know that its added any volume to my hair and it doesn’t give my hair “mirror-like shine” as it claims but it definitely leaves my hair very clean, which is more than I can say from any other sulfate-free shampoo that I’ve ever used. So that’s saying something right there. I have a large back stash of shampoo and conditioner right now but I feel like I might want to try this more long term next time I need shampoo.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Fresh Umbrian Clay Mattifying Serum- January Glossybox

Sample was .17 oz
Full-sized is $35 for 1 oz

Pic from

First of all, what is Umbrian clay? It apparently is an ultra-fine clay that comes exclusively from Nocera Umbra, Italy. So there you go. The Umbrian clay in this serum is supposes to neutralize acid on the face, purify and clarify. Ginger root and meadowsweet extract control oil and minimize pores. If this actually does all of the things it claims. . .I will be in love.

This serum doesn’t really strike me as a serum. It seems more like a light moisturizer. It’s a sort of tannish colored cream that smells weird. It doesn’t really smell bad, just weird. It smells sort of like cucumbers but not like a refreshing cucumber, like a bitter cucumber. Its hard to describe but it doesn’t hang around after it dries. It’s a very light moisturizer. It smoothes on really nicely and was enough moisture for me but someone with dry or normal skin might need an extra moisturizer. But then again someone with dry or normal skin probably doesn’t need a mattifying serum. Now, you know I have oily skin. Not horrendously oily this time of year but I do still have to blot at least once throughout the day. This serum didn’t change that. I still had to blot at about the same time I usually do. And I didn’t notice my pores were minimized at all.

So overall, it was a nice light moisturizer but it didn’t control my oil and it’s a little more than I would spend on just a day moisturizer.