Kiehl’s: Calendula Deep Cleansing Foaming Face Wash and Micro-Blur Skin Perfector

I am excited to share with you two new products from my favorite skincare line: Kiehl’s. Kiehl’s has been my ‘go-to’ skincare line for the past two years. So, let’s talk about these two new kids on the block. One is a cleanser called ‘Calendula Deep Cleansing Foaming Face Wash’ and the other is a skin treatment product named ‘Micro-Blur Skin Perfector’…

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Let’s discuss the Micro-Blur Skin Perfector first. It’s a new favorite!…

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It is so good to my skin! I use it every morning after I hydrate. I use this whether I put on foundation afterwards or not. I can’t say that this hides my imperfections but it does blur the appearance of large pores and fine lines…

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This product glides on. It doesn’t pill up even if you tend to overwork it. Truthfully, it doesn’t take much product and lays across the skin smoothly. The sample I put on the back of my hand is enough for me to use across my entire face and down my neck…

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It’s subtle but it does soften the spots on my skin. There is a slight fragrance that might give issue to those with a very sensitive nose but, I found that the smell didn’t linger one bit. It’s not claiming to be a primer but I use it as such. Since this is recommended for all skin types and is paraben-free, you should try it!

Calendula Deep Cleansing Foaming Face Wash is a long title for a face wash that is simple. It contains no parabens and is soap-free. It really cleans your face; makeup and all! This wash foams up good and sudsy, which is surprising since it contains no soap. It smells just like Calendula flowers and, is such a wonderfully relaxing fragrance to unwind to at the end of the day. I look forward to using it because of that!…

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You will notice that this is recommended for normal to oily skin types. Well, I sure don’t have oily skin. So you can imagine how skeptical I was that this was going to make may skin feel OK after a good washing. So, yes….WOW! I always follow up after washing with a moisturizer anyway (I use Kiehl’s Powerful-Strength Line-Reducing Concentrate and Midnight Recovery Concentrate at night) however, my skin didn’t feel extremely tight or dry afterwards. It just felt super clean. And I loved how it tackled removing my makeup without needed to use a separate product for that…

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Even my husband likes using Calendula Deep Cleansing Foaming Face Wash. He likes the foaming action and how clean his skin feels afterwards. Also, since the fragrance is more of an herbal note, I think this wash is great for men and woman. It sure doesn’t take but a partial pump to get enough wash to completely wash my face and neck.

You can purchase these two products and other awesome Kiehl’s items from their website, stand-alone stores that are popping up across the country or, at fine department stores like Nordstrom’s and Dillards.

 

These products were provided to me for review. These are my own, honest opinions. 

Toss or Trash: It’s Been A While But I Have A Pile

It’s been a while since I blogged a Toss or Trash post. I’ve been saving up my empties and putting them in a box. This weekend I went to look for something and I found two boxes full of trash! Yuck! I photographed these and got them out of the house!!!

Let’s start with the hair products. I just finished up L’Oreal’s EverStrong Overnight Hair Repair Treatment. I love that stuff! And, I’m going to miss it. I gave up buying L’Oreal products this year.  I am choosing to stop purchasing from, at least, one company a year that continues to test on animals. Thus, I won’t be replacing any of the L’Oreal haircare products that I have used for so long. And that includes the Total Repair 5 shampoo and conditioner. Here, you see that I finished the conditioner. As much as I love these two products, I love animals more…

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Suave’s Moroccan Deep Conditioner has made my hair super soft. And, the smell is lovely!!!! I found that I needed to use a lot of it for my hair to turn out soft though. I couldn’t be stingy and still get my wide-tooth comb through my hair. All in all, I would say that all of these are trash, meaning I would buy them again. But, since L’Oreal and I have parted ways, these won’t get replaced with same. And the Moroccan Conditioner was just OK. I am placing that in the trash column. (Yes, I know Suave is made by Unilever who still tests on animals.)

Next up are two spray leave-in conditioners…

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I purchased both of these over 2 years ago at a beauty show in Orlando. It’s funny how both of them became empty at about the same time.

First, Black 15 in 1 is a brand I had high hopes for. When I purchased this leave-in conditioner, I also purchased the shampoo and conditioner by that brand. Of the three, I did like the leave-in conditioner the most but, it is not a product that blew me away. I have no intention of repurchasing it…

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I have quite a love affair with leave-in conditioners. As I have aged, my hair is getting thinner and becomes dried out faster. I knew this was coming as I saw it happening to my mother. At least I am working on being proactive and treating my hair the best that I can. 12 Benefits leave-in conditioner is a winner because I feel that it helps keep my hair healthy. I would repurchase this one if I knew where I could readily pick it up. However, I have never seen it in any store or salon that I have visited…

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Next are the face products. Kiehl’s is my go-to brand. They give out samples and that’s what wins me over. I used Avon’s Anew line from the beginning, however, when I went to a blogger event at Nordstrom’s and Kiehl’s gave their demonstrations and I took home samples, that’s all it took for me to fall hook, line and sinker! I won’t lie; the Midnight Recovery Concentrate is expensive. This bottle is $70 and it’s only 1.7 ounces. It does last me a year, though. I use about 5 to 6 drops per night. When I am not testing out another product for a review, Midnight Recovery Concentrate is my best and favorite love.

Reviva Labs Vitamin E Stick was a discovery from doing a review for them. This simple little balm stick does a lot of different jobs. I use it on my lips and all around my mouth, for my dry cuticles and I will rub some of it under my eyes when I feel like my skin is especially dry there. I also put it on pimples so they don’t scar. For $2.50, you get a work horse! I have already replaced this as I don’t want to be without it. Now, for Avon’s Lip Treatment…

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OK, this stuff is great! What is not great is that I had to swipe my finger in it to use it. I know I could have used a Q-tip (too hairy) or a lip brush (too much of a hassle at bedtime) but, it just got to be gross. And, since I have medium-length nails, it really got to be a hassle towards the bottom of the jar. And, I think this little, bitty jar lasted me like over 2 years!!! It just couldn’t be used up!!!! I was so happy to finally finish it! As much as I liked how it worked on my lips and kept them moist, I don’t like the packaging so I will not be repurchasing this. Look, the label didn’t even last as long as the product!…

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I moved from Orlando to Denver last year and came out here before my husband. He stayed behind for several months to not only pack up our house but to deal with selling it and all that. When he told me he went to Bath and Body Works and asked for empty boxes to pack all my products from them, and they gave him CASES so he could pack up all my candles, lotions and potions from them, I was shamed into facing the fact that I owned my own B&BW!!! I have diligently worked on not only reducing my inventory but also, not so readily buying their new fragrances every season. Here’s what I have used up in the past few months…

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But, don’t you just LOVE getting those minis to try out fragrances!!!! I do! And, their Stress Relief body wash and lotion are stables at the vanity. That’s a good thing!!! I loved all of these fragrances. The ‘Be Enchanted’ was a hot passion for me when it first came out too.

Last, are the body and hand lotions…

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La Source is from Evelyn and Crabtree and I love their hand lotions. There was an outlet store I visited often when I lived in Orlando so I had quite a few of these around. Now I’m seeing the end of them and miss that store! If you are looking for a very moisturizing hand lotion with instant results, you will want to get yourself La Source. There’s not much of a fragrance to this one; it’s busy being therapeutic!!!

Proclaim’s Coconut & Macadamia Nut Oil hand lotion didn’t smell as nice as I thought it would. Coming from Sally’s Beauty Supply, I thought it would be a winner. But, I won’t be seeking to replace this one just because it wasn’t all that great.

Jergen’s BB Body Perfecting Skin Cream lotion smells very nice. And, I liked how it made my skin soft. But, that’s about all it did. So, there’s no ‘illuminating’ and ‘firming’ like the claims state. I’m rather disappointed too.

Have you tried any of these products? See any that you want to try out?

NYC’s Expert Last Lip Color: Blue Rose

This fact surprised even myself, but, I don’t have many fuchsia lipsticks. But then, how many is too many? And, how many is not enough? For less than $2, what can one more hurt?

NYC’s Expert Last Lip Color lipstick in ‘Blue Rose’ is just the shade to perk up my Summertime look…

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This fuchsia shade is perfect for my complexion. I don’t actively seek a tan and only get a bit of color from my early morning runs and the late evening porch sits. Even then, I make sure I have at least 30 SPF on. However, I have a fair complexion so when I want some color, I go for the eyes and lips. ‘Blue Rose’ gives me awesome color…

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I couldn’t wait for the next sunny day so I could take photos of it. I was itchin‘ to wear this and brighten up my look…

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If you are looking to add color to your lips and, to your life PERIOD! Get this! The staying power of ‘Blue Rose’ out of this world. I used Laura Geller’s lip primer, lined my lips with the first liner I found in a bright pink shade (it is a no-name one I’ve had forever) and applied ‘Blue Rose’ over all of that. Over 5 hours, folks!!!!! Even from drinking water from my sports cup, I didn’t lose color.

I always tuck my lipstick of the day in my purse before I head out the door in case I need a touch up. I didn’t need to touch it up once. This NYC lippie hung on all.day.long.

This lipstick applies smoothly, doesn’t feel sticky or dry and has no taste or smell…

DSCF0013  When I put it on my lips, there was no drag; only rich color…

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A bold color like ‘Blue Rose’ helps balance out my features since I have thin lips. And for a measly $2, I have seriously brightened my day.

I purchased this NYC Expert Last Lip Color at Target. Have you seen this new color?

 

BeautyBeam: Give Your Makeup Brush A Headlight

A month ago, I posted about the BeautyBeam tool for nail polish bottles. Today I have a review on the BeautyBeam for makeup brushes…

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There’s only two pieces to this tool; the light itself and a silicone sleeve that holds it on the brush…

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There’s only one button that turns the light on and off…

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I picked out a few of my most used makeup brushes to see how it goes…

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Since I had practiced with putting the BeautyBeam on nail polish tops, I didn’t have much of a learning curve this time. And, makeup brushes are more balanced to work with than a nail polish bottle. Once you get the silicone sleeve around the light and the brush handle, it’s fairly easy after that…

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I didn’t always worry about the sleeve being on perfectly. The more I messed with it, the more I was stressing it out and possibly causing a tear. If I got it on to this point, it was still on there firmly and I was good to go…

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I found it best when the light was close to the bristles

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I didn’t quite get used to the extra weight at the end of the brush…

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I think this is a very clever idea. If you are putting makeup on in a dimly lit room, you need this. However, it wasn’t as practical for me to use as I found with the nail polish BeautyBeam. I have a large, lit makeup mirror mounted to the wall and I can put my face right up to it. Also, with one eye closed and, with the fast sweeping motion of the brush, my eye had a hard time tracking the lit area. It worked better when I made very slow movements, but that seemed unnatural for me. I attempted to go without the mirror’s light and just use the BeautyBeam once. As long as I had both of my eyes open, this was good. So, when I was brushing on a highlight shadow on my brow bone, I liked this.

Also, when I used the BeautyBeam on a smudge brush for under my bottom lash line, and I could keep both eyes open, it was quite nice. I liked that the best, actually. Mainly because the brush movement I make when doing that is much slower.  Right now, I have my BeautyBeam on that smudge brush and am leaving it on that brush.

You can purchase the BeautyBeam at their website or, on Amazon. They used Kickstarter to help with funding and they made their goal. 

 

This product was provided to me for review. These are my own, honest opinions.

Forever 21: Love & Beauty’s Hot Pink Pigmented Finish Gloss

It’s been a good, long time since I have been to Forever 21. I miss not being able to step into one every week. However, the last time I was at the mall, I sure did make it a point to stop in. I picked up this lipgloss

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Anytime I see the words ‘pigmented’ with lipgloss, I’m drawn like a moth to a flame. Even though I love me some gloss, these highly pigmented ones allow me to skip out on the lipstick color all together. And Forever 21′s love and beauty line didn’t disappoint me one bit.

This is ‘Hot Pink’ and boy, is it ever…

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Forever 21 has the ‘good’ symbol on it…

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It’s a bit on the tacky side, so I would suggest using a lip liner to keep the gloss from traveling outside of the lines. But, maybe a bit of a tacky texture helps hold it in place…

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However, they are not lying when they state that there is pigmentation going on. I didn’t have to pack this on my lips at all. And, there is even a mint feeling and smell to it. Not so much a flavor, but then, that’s quite alright. I don’t need to be licking this gloss off!…

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I can’t say that the gloss last a long time; it hangs around for about 2 hours and then starts to fade away. Yet, for the price, it’s pretty nice. As you can see from my lips, it has not only lots of pigmentation but a high gloss shine. I tried using ‘Hot Pink’ just once over a complimentary lipstick and my mileage did improve just a bit.

Have you bought any Forever 21′s love and beauty lately?

Wet ‘N Wild’s Perfect Pair: Passion Plum

I got a chance, last week, to make a trip to KMart. They don’t have any Kmart stores South of downtown Denver, which is where I live. And, it’s a bit of a haul to go there now.  I haven’t been shopping at a KMart in over a year, so I was excited to check everything out. After spending (quite) some time checking out the clothing department, I made my way to the makeup.

Besides getting several elf products that I have only found at KMart, I did pick up this Wet ‘n Wild duo lip product…

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Wet ‘n Wild’s Perfect Pair is a lip liner and lipstick all in one. That eliminates me needing to dig in a separate organizer to find a matching liner to work with the lipstick choice of the day. So, I’m saving precious morning moments, right there.

This all-in-one is called ‘Passion Plum’.  Or, as it is numbered at the bottom of the liner cap ’123′. I couldn’t find the name on the package, itself. But it was on the safety wrap…

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This two-in-one doesn’t need sharpening so, I can throw it in my purse and leave it in there forever…

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We are, finally, getting into the hot season for Colorado. Yep, it’s over 80 degrees! But, it feels like 74 degrees to me after 4 Summers in Orlando. I mean, THIS is what Summers are SUPPOSED to feel likeahhhhhh!!! Nevertheless, I may pare back my eye and face makeup during the hot days, but I can still pull off a pretty look with a lipstick that takes all the attention. And ‘Passion Plum’ makes it so effortless!…

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Both the liner and the lipstick glide on without a bit of tugging. I do use a lip primer (for this swatch, it’s elf’s) and got hours of wear. No migration of color either. The lipstick isn’t tacky or drying. In fact, I found it to be very moisturizing which is something my lips need.

This isn’t the first time I have purchased Wet ‘N Wild’s Perfect Pair lipstick. I have three of their other colors so I knew that this one was going to be a champ. And for $3.50, getting a liner with a lipstick, that makes for sweet Summer success.

Have you tried any of the Perfect Pair lip colors yet? Which one is your favorite?

Vichy Laboratoires: Perete Thermale One Step Cleanser

I have TWO full boxes of empties for the Vanity’s Toss or Trash segment that has been on hiatus for like months. It’s not because I don’t have plenty of fodder! This product that I will be reviewing for you today deserves its own special review so it didn’t have to add to the shame that I’m slacking on sharing my Toss or Trash items.

I purchased Vichy Laboratories One Step Cleanser with a coupon many moons ago. It was my first Vichy product to try out. It has, also, been my go-to cleanser when I have not been doing any makeup wipe product testing. First and foremost, I have loved using this product!…

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Can you tell I squeezed every last drop out of this tube! When I can get a product that does what it promotes to do AND it does more than one job, I will stop complete strangers to tell them they need this product. Not only does it cleanse and tone the skin, but it also removes eye makeup. Yes, it actually did all three jobs…

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And, it did it without any parabens. That would be with no unnecessary chemicals. See, it’s my face and I’m well past the classic age so I have to baby this face. Perete Thermale did the babying all for me in one product. And since my skin is moving from being normal to dry to almost completely dry, this cleanser did its work without making my skin feel like a parched sidewalk.

There is just one problem: I used it wrong!

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The directions clearly state that you wipe it on with a cotton pad and do not rinse. Well, I screwed that up. I used it like I do almost all other cleansers; I wet my face, rubbed the product thoroughly around my eyes and face and then wiped it all off with a wet microfiber cloth. However, I am lucky. It still worked. And it was with the very last use that I followed the directions. Meh. I liked my way better.

This cleanser sudsed up very well. I felt my skin was completely clean when I was finished and there was absolutely no need to use a toner to wipe away any remaining residue…

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It had no distinctive fragrance, didn’t sting my skin and didn’t hurt my eyes either. I think I need to add to the lauds that it really is good for sensitive skin.

While I have a new face wash to test out, I will miss using my Vichy Cleanser. I bought this at Walgreens and the current price is $19.50. While that may seem a bit high for a drugstore facial cleanser, do keep in mind that this one product does three things: cleanse, tone and remove makeup. And, it does it all remarkably well.

If you have tried Vichy’s Perete Thermale One Step Cleanser, how did you like it?

 

BeautyBeam: Putting A Spotlight On Your Polishing

Sometimes, I want to say ‘What will they think of next?’ when I see new beauty gadgets. The BeautyBeam is one that had me wondering why it took so long to come up with this idea. It’s a little flashlight for your nail polish bottle!

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Like a miner’s lamp, you can strap this right on the handle and put a trouble light right on your work…

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And, if you need a tutorial, you can download BeautyBeam’s app…

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Even if you do your nails in a well-lit area, putting some light right at the point of work can make it just a bit easier. This is a tiny gadget, so you’ll want to keep it in a safe spot. There are two pieces to it; the light itself and the silcone sleeve that holds it on the bottle. The little button is the on/off switch…

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I brought out an array of different polishes to test the BeatyBeam on. Here’s the bottles I picked…

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I will admit, it took me a moment of wrestling with the silcone sleeve to stretch it over the polish’s handle and get the light in place. But, after I had switched it out over numerous bottles, I did get it down and was fairly quick with it. Here’s what it looks like on a bottle of polish…

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Once the light is snuggly in place, turn it on and then remove the polish’s top from the bottle…

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You’ll want to make sure that the light isn’t too far down that it gets in the way of dipping the brush back into the bottle too…

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The light wasn’t as bright as I thought it would be. However, as you can tell, I’m taking these photos at a sunny window. There is just enough of a light beam to make it to the end of the brush and shine right where you are polishing…beautybeam on

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As I was removing the BeautyBeam’s silcone sleeve, I noticed that it was quite easy to stretch to hold the light in place. It didn’t slide around.

One thing that I learned when I was in nail tech school was to not hunch over while doing nails. As a professional, doing that every day would be murder on your back! So, I have found that I do sit up straight, but lean into the table while I paint my nails. However, if I leaned my face down even closer to my nails, I did see that the light make a better visual impact on the area I was polishing.

You can purchase the BeautyBeam at their website or, on Amazon. They have a kickstarter going on as well.

 

This product was provided to me for review. These are my own, honest opinions. 

 

Covergirl’s Natureluxe Lip Balm: Hibiscus

Finally, warmer days here in Colorado! I have been itchin’ to sit out on my porch and wind down my days. But, I don’t do it without some SPF going on. And that means for my lips too. This is Covergirl’s Natureluxe Gloss Balm…

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It’s equal parts a gloss and a balm, making my lips hydrated and yet with just a little bit of color. They are touting a 15 SPF, which isn’t much, but it’s better than nothing. You still gotta protect any exposed skin!

I chose ‘Hibiscus’ because it is the cutest Summer pink shade…

DSCF0071 DSCF0072With mango, shea and other natural butters, you can bet this balm gliiiiiides on smoothly. You are trading a bit of color for a creamy texture but this is perfectly OK when you only want a hint of color. If I’m out and it’s rather warm, I don’t want a heavy lipstick on. Covergirl’s Natureluxe gloss balm is just the thing…

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There is still enough color that you will want to apply it like a lipstick rather than like a no-color balm, though. That means, you’ll want to color within the lines!…

covergirl lippie no sun covergirl lippieThis gloss balm’s packaging is sleek and doesn’t take up a lot of room. So don’t hesitate to pop it into your picnic basket, beach bag or capri’s pocket this Summer.

I picked this balm up at Walgreen’s for around $4. Have you picked up yours yet?

Milani Monday: Color Statement Best Red Lipstick

My best of the best, most favorite red lipsticks come from Milani. Here’s why:

  • They make the truest reds
  • They have incredible staying power
  • The price between $4.50 to $5.50 is very reasonable
  • The formula is creamy and easy to apply
  • I look hot wearing their reds

The red named ‘Best Red’, is probably the most perfect red for me, with my light, pink undertone complexion…

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I don’t know if you can classify a red lipstick as a neutral but this one is what I call ‘middle of the road’. It doesn’t have an orange tinge to it, nor does it have a pink flair. It’s just a true red. And this one is the creamiest matte red lipstick I own. Yep, it’s my ‘Best Red’…

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The Color Statement line tube’s end which shows the shade rather than trying to guess off a colored sticker is the only way to go on The Vanity…

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‘Best Red’ glides on soooo smoothly…

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And, if I want that ‘middle of the road’ red, I know I’m not going to clash with any other red that I may be wearing…

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I think I can get a whole lot of happiness for a mere $5.50 from this lipstick.

Do you adore Milani red lipsticks as much as I do?

 

*The product was provided to me for my honest opinion. All comments are my own.