Sep 072014

NIP FABa1Who doesn’t love finding a fabulous little product that doesn’t cost much?  Lately, I’ve been working my way through a jar of Nip + Fab Glycolic Fix Pads (about $13 at This jar of 60 pre-soaked pads uses glycolic acid (2.8%) to retexture and resurface skin and witch hazel to tone. It also includes hyaluronic acid and blue daisy for brighter, smoother skin.

NIP FABa2The ingredient list is:

Aqua (Water), Glycerin, Glycolic Acid, Polysorbate 20, Sodium Hydroxide, PEG-12 Dimethicone, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Water, Phenoxyethanol, Benzyl Alcohol, Alcohol Denat. (SD Alcohol 40-B), Disodium EDTA, Globularia Alypum (Blue Daisy) Extract, Panthenol, Lactic Acid, Parfum, Limonene, Ethylhexylglycerin, Dehydroacetic Acid, Sodium Hyaluronate, Linalool, Geraniol, Citral

NIP FAB3The plastic container has been keeping these pretty fresh (I use two per day), and this can easily be popped into a checked bag for unbreakable exfoliation on the road. These are gentle, but effective. My skin doesn’t feel dry afterwards, and seems to look fresher and brighter. For this price point, these are a steal. At Ulta.

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Jun 212013

Revlon Lash Potion51

A few weeks ago, Revlon sent us a tube of Revlon Lash Potion by Grow Luscious Mascara ($7.99 retail). I bought a twin so that Liz and I could test and demonstrate this for Cafe Makeup.

Revlon Lash Potion52

Many who love high-end makeup don’t mind economizing for drugstore mascaras.  I can see why.  In the past, I’ve had good luck with L’Oreal’s mascara–most recently, L’Oreal Voluminous False Fiber Lashes Waterproof Mascara. Although it’s a bit clumpy, it doesn’t leave my lashes dry and crunchy (as some drugstore mascaras do), and it doesn’t smudge.  Revlon’s Lash Potion is said to “drench[] lashes with a potion of strengthening proteins for captivating volume and length” and give “maximum volume for clump-free length.” Essentially, Revlon’s is advertised to moisturize, condition, and give dramatic volume and length.

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Feb 102013

Physicians Formuala Deluxe Bronze Booster1a

As you know, sometimes we try drugstore items as part of the Dollar Menu here at the cafe. As any sane person would, we sometimes wonder if paying $40 or more for a blush, bronzer, or eyeshadow palette makes sense. There are makeup treasures everywhere, certainly there are excellent lower priced mascaras, nail polish, and eyeliners. In this spirit, I explored the “new on the pegboard” Physician’s Formula Bronze Booster (Deluxe Edition) ($15.95) (Light-Medium) (0.42 oz).  In the pan, you could even say that it glows:

Physicians Formuala Deluxe Bronze Booster2

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Nov 142011

The beauty world is buzzing about Revlon Colorburst Lip Butters. This new line of lipsticks, each of which retails at $7.49, is currently being rolled out nationwide. I’ve heard so much about these over the past few weeks, they just seemed like the perfect little bon bon item for the Cafe Makeup Dollar Menu.

The color range is huge–there are twenty (20) different shades. The texture appears to be a drugstore version mix between the highly moisturizing sheer colors that we saw in Chanel Rouge Coco Shine, Burberry Lip Mist, and Dior Addict earlier this Spring, and the old standby Clinique’s Butter Shine. Revlon realizes that not everyone is going to invest $30 or more per lipstick (go figure!) If you are looking to keep your lips moisturized during the coming winter months while adding a pretty, semi-sheer wash of color, these are a very nice budget-priced way to go.

Revlon’s press relations sent me two for review– #001 Pink Truffle and #050 Berry Smoothie.

Pink Tuffle is a warm pink-chocolate tone that seems to have a touch of bronze. Berry Smoothie is a shimmery sheer pink with tiny multicolor micro-glitters. Of the two, I preferred Berry Smoothie. It’s a really easy-to-wear pink that’s sheer enough to go with a wide range of makeup types. Pink Truffle is pretty, but a touch on the brown side for me. These have a very slight scent that fades very quickly.

The lasting power was about the same as Burberry’s Lip Mists, and longer than Chanel Rouge Coco Shine (at its glossiest, before the Rouge Coco Shine turns to a stain).

Here is Pink Truffle on Liz:

Berry Smoothie on Liz:

I thought that for the price range these Revlon Lip Butters are revolutionary. No, I’m not going to give up buying the Chanel, Burberry or Dior’s in favor of these. However, they do look and feel wonderful for the comparatively low $7.49 (and even less if you can catch a coupon). They’re one of the better-feeling drugstore lip products out there, and quite obviously they are several notches up on the glam scale from Chapstick.

Other reviews of Revlon Colorburst Lip Butters that you might like to see:

– Nouveau Cheap is here

– The Glam Trotter is here

– Body & Soul is here (many swatches!)

These lipsticks were sent by Revlon Press Relations to Cafe Makeup without charge for consideration for review.

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Oct 112011

I have a soft spot of new independent companies.  When Fresh Faces Minerals asked Cafe Makeup to try some samples, I said “yes,” although I’m not a pigment expert. In response, I was sent a boatload of small samples jars with sifters on top to prevent spilling.

I actually have a soft spot for pigment samples.  At only $1 per jar, one can get a variety of complex or candy-toned colors.  They’re a cheap thrill, but they also happen to be a really good product.  What impressed me about these is that they are so very finely milled.  There was no trace of the chunky quality that some pigments have.  The range of textures was impressive.  This little sampling includes mattes, complex shimmers and metallics.  Here are some of the neutral shades that have a soft glowing finish-from left to right, these are Patina, Icy Brown, Bliss and Bossy Mossy (all applied with MAC Mixing Medium).  The colors are soft and not too over the top.  These are smooth, lovely colored neutrals.  Not bad for $4 total:

These metallics were really pretty foiled in MAC Mixing Medium, Sun in the Sea, Antique Copper, Stone Khakis and Black Amethyst:

I enjoyed the eyes that I created with Fresh Faces Minerals.  The vibe is very fresh, clean and in colors that can be worn by the everyday woman.  These are very easy to use, just mix the pigment with a tiny droplet of Mixing Medium or water on the back of your hand and go.  The metallics (Sun in Sea and Antique Copper) were particularly impressive–they looked really good on the skin.  They held onto their shine beautifully.  Definitely a nice little treat and worth taking a look.

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