REVIEW: NARS All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation

I finally was able to get my hands on the newest NARS foundation — the NARS All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation. This product has been very hyped but I’ve been waiting a long time for it. As a foundation junkie and a NARS fan, it was an exciting moment for me to finally get my new NARS foundation. :) This foundation is an “oil-free foundation that delivers full, natural-looking coverage with one drop, for lightweight, 16-hour wear.” Along side the highly acclaimed Sheer Glow Foundation, this is the perfect newest addition to the NARS foundation family. I heard through the grapevine that the All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation will replace the Sheer Matte Foundation.

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“Achieve full-coverage, lightweight foundation that leaves a natural finish. Highly pigmented and perfectly balanced, this breakthrough, full-coverage formula builds and blends effortlessly.” This foundation is unique — in that the texture of it is actually very light and almost watery. Even after you shake it really well, the foundation hardly feels like it would be something that delivers high coverage. In addition, I found that it’s highly adjustable as well — in fact, I can wear it as sheer as I want (with a damp Beauty Blender sponge) and pigmentation and coverage isn’t compromised. This foundation’s “Even Tone Technology” is referred to as the magic that “instantly neutralizes redness and dullness, while it works to reduce discoloration for more even, uniform skin. Perfect for all skin types, it features Long-wear Technology, an exclusive blend from NARS with flexible polymers and treated pigments that move with the skin while providing 16 hours of staying power.”

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I’m never dissatisfied with NARS foundations, and I’m so pleased with the performance of the new All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation. It’s super light weight and glides onto the skin effortlessly. Most of the time I like to use a Beauty Blender Sponge, but other times, I use a dense synthetic buffing brush and it blends out beautifully no matter what. The great thing about a buildable foundation is that you can add additional product onto places where you really need it the most. For me, I add a few extra dots to my cheek areas when they’re irritated or red; everything is instantly concealed with this foundation — and, in the most natural way possible.

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I got my usual shade “Mont Blanc” which is a light shade with pink undertones. It balances my pinky, Asian skin really well and hasn’t irritated it in any way. Additionally, I found that even without a setting powder, this foundation holds up well on its own. Oil-control is surprisingly good, and even after oil breaks through, the foundation remains uncakey. I like that this foundation is really natural and feels light on the skin. It’s great for mornings I wake up with issues with my skin because this will cover it right up. However, I also like it for days when there’s nothing wrong with my skin since I can apply it so naturally and sheerly on my skin.

Overall, I recommend this foundation. I think no matter what skin type you have and what you initial skin concerns are, this foundation will continue to work for you. A little bit of product goes a long ways — I use barely half a pump and I’m happy with that. At $48.00 USD, I find that it’s a fair and reasonable price for a high-end product that performs well.

Retails for $48.00 USD.
Made in USA.

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AmorePacific Treatment Toner

My favorite toner — probably ever — has been the AmorePacific Treatment Toner. With this, you can see immediate and long-lasting results that you can’t miss. I feel that since adding this as the first step of my skincare routine after cleansing has made a huge difference, and right off the bat, I recommend this treatment toner. As a “calming, balancing toner for smooth, refreshed skin,” this gentle toner treats the skin by hydrating and soothing it — immediately my skin feels and looks better, with a significant about of redness toned down.

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The AmorePacific Treatment Toner is “a soothing formula that suits all skin types, including the most sensitive skin. Utilizing red ginseng extract in lieu of distilled water for additional revitalizing benefits, this botanical preparation step completes the cleansing process, balances pH, reduces redness and irritation, and primes skin to receive treatment.” This is formulated without sulfates and phthalates, and truly seems to be good for all skin types. Whether my skin is feeling dry, dehydrated, oily, or sensitive, this toner keeps my skin balanced — allowing my skin to drink up the treatment toner and the products that I use after. And, I swear, with this, my skin feels and looks plumped and healthy, which makes my base makeup just glide on effortlessly.

While AmorePacific is a Korean brand, I’m just now getting familiar with the brand and its products. This brand is “dedicated to achieving health and beauty with natural botanicals, [and] AmorePacific does not test ingredients or products on animals.” As an “environmentally aware and socially conscious [brand]..AmorePacific is dedicated to treating the earth and its inhabitants with respect.”

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Key ingredients:
-Red Ginseng Root Extract: Energizes, balances, and refreshes skin.
-Water Lily Extract: Offers natural purifying and astringent properties to promote clean, soft, supple skin.
-Arnica, Artemesia, and Yarrow: Calm and soothe skin.

I recommend this toner for its fast results and effective treatment. I prefer this over the SK-II essence or other “toners” that claim to be a “treatment” product. I notice differences when I don’t use this toner and use something different in its place; therefore, I feel that this will be something that I find worth re-purchasing.

Made in Korea.
Retails for $50.00 USD.

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Facial Moisturizer

Lately, with changing temperatures here in Texas, I’ve struggled to find the perfect moisturizer for my skin. I purchased the Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Facial Moisturizer after noticing that it was available at target. I’ve seen this particular moisturizer around in Asia, but never in the U.S., so I was thrilled to give it a go. As a “a refreshing, lightweight water gel that instantly quenches and continuously hydrates skin,” this gel moisturizer is formulated with hyaluronic acid to boost hydration. It “locks [hydration] in so skin stays hydrated, smooth and supple day after day.”

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The Hydro Boost Water Gel Facial Moisturizer is lightweight and the gel texture “applies effortlessly, absorbing quickly into skin without leaving behind an oily or greasy feel. Hydro Boost hydrates skin through an approach of replenishing water and strengthening skin’s moisture barrier.” It instantly quenches skin and absorbs quickly, which makes it ideal for daytime use. it sinks in almost immediately — comforting my dry, yet combination skin. I’m able to apply sunblock directly after this gel moisturizer, and then move onto applying base makeup without greasiness. As far as oil-control goes — it could be better. Considering this is a gel cream, I thought that my skin would remain mattified throughout the day. While it keeps my skin clean, hydrated, and healthy, I’ve noticed that oil production doesn’t change and the moisturizer doesn’t necessarily keep my skin from getting less oil. However, for me, it’s not a deal-breaker since I blot during the day regardless of what I use, lol.

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Key ingredients that really works are purified hyaluronic acid and olive extract.
Purified Hyaluronic Acid:
Naturally found in skin, in this formula, Purified Hyaluronic Acid helps deliver a boost of hydration. It also acts like a sponge for dry skin cells, absorbing up to 1000 times its weight in water and progressively releases moisture back into skin, keeping skin hydrated and supple throughout the day.

Olive Extract:
Known for its moisturizing and nutrient rich qualities, it is a complex combination for fatty acids, which is similar to skin’s natural moisture shield. In this formula, it helps strengthen the skin’s moisture barrier, helping protect the skin from excessive moisture loss. It also helps leave skin feeling soft and smooth without tackiness.

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I recommend the Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Facial Moisturizer, and it’s great that it’s budget-friendly and available at the drugstore. Currently, I’ve only seen this at select Target stories, but you can also order online as well. Neutrogena Hydro Boost Gel-Cream for Extra-Dry Skin is also available for those who need a heavier formula. So far, this moisturizer has been great and I don’t mind using a lot of it since I know that it’s affordable. I apply this face and neck every morning and it’s been great. If you’re looking for a lightweight moisturizer that is fast-absorbing for the day time, this may be a great option for you.

Item contains 1.7 oz.
Retails for $17.99 at Target stores/online.

Tatcha Polished Rice Enzyme Powder

My new favorite product is the Tatcha Polished Rice Enzyme Powder, and before this review even gets started, I recommend this product over pretty much everything. This product is unique but easy to use; and if you’re like me and hate traditional, grainy exfoliators that tear at your skin, you may be interested in this. The Tatcha Polished Rice Enzyme Powder is a “gentle yet effective exfoliator, cleanser, and toner for daily use.” It is a “creamy, water-activated exfoliant [that] polishes skin daily to a jewel-like luster.” Unlike traditional exfoliators, this product is gentle and doesn’t even feel like you’re exfoliating. However, the results are truly amazing and that’s why this product is so worth it.

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The Tatcha Polished Rice Enzyme Powder contains “nourishing Japanese rice bran blends with papaya extracts to address fine lines, uneven skintone, hyperpigmentation, and breakouts.” It includes “crushed pearl conditions and balances skin while natural exfoliants gently buff away dullness and dead skin cells—leaving skin perfectly prepared for your favorite serum or moisturizer with more effective results.” This product gently yet effectively exfoliates, while conditioning and pampering your skin leaving it soft and radiant on its own. For me, I only use this product at night about every other day to “maintain” my skin’s “freshness” lol. I think exfoliating too much can be a bad thing — no matter how gentle it claims to be. After removing my makeup and cleansing my skin, I pour about a teaspoon-sized amount into my wet hands. When you a teeny bit of water and rub together, the powdery particle creates a surprisingly “cushiony lather.” It doesn’t feel soapy, but feels really light and fluffy. Then, I massage onto my already wet face for 10 to 15 seconds avoiding eye area. I spend some additional time around my nose, forehead, and chin areas; but I also take some time to pass over my cheeks (which are normally pretty sensitive).

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You won’t feel any grainy or beady textures because what you’re actually exfoliating with is that “cushiony lather.” What you’ll be using on your skin is a slightly creamy, soft lather. It will feel thin on the skin, but I promise it’s working its magic. I concentrate exfoliating around my nose and chin the most — I like how it’s extremely gentle, but you can tell that it’s working really well too. In addition, it’s quick and easy to use and doesn’t irritate my skin; so it’s a win-win in my book. My skin looks and feels amazing afterwards, and even the next morning, I’m so glad that I used this. I recommend this product and it’s worth the hefty price tag. I’ve noticed if you too little the lather won’t foam well. Using the correct amount is key with this it seems, which may allow the product to last a few months when used every other day or so.

Made in Japan.
Retails for $65.00 USD.

REVIEW: Glam Glow THIRSTYCLEANSE™ Daily Treatment Cleanser

Newly released from Glam Glow is its new THIRSTYCLEANSE™ Daily Treatment Cleanser. This is a “daily Mud to Foam™ cleanser for dry and dehydrated skin,” and “is a revolutionary daily cleanser that combines the power of mud and the performance of foam for a new daily cleansing experience.” I know that it sounds fancy, and I was sucked into it because I’m a fan of the Glam Glow masks. However, for me, I felt that this product was a gimmick; and, overall, I was unimpressed by its mediocre performance. I’ve noticed that online reviews vary, so please take mine with a grain of salt! :)

The cleanser is just like the mask — in that it’s the same color, consistency, and even smells the same too. Much like the mask, it’s designed to by hydrating and can be great for dehydrated and dry skins. The cleaners “transforms from a luxurious mud into a moisture-rich foaming lather to gently and effectively rinse away makeup, dirt, and impurities while deeply moisturizing your skin. It is formulated with rare Brazilian yellow clay to help to remineralize the skin, pure green coconut water to immediately boost skin for intense hydration, olive milk rich in olive lipids and proteins to replenish skin, and plumeria flower blossom extract rich in omega 3, 6, and 9 to restore the skin barrier function.”

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It’s suggested that you apply this cleanser onto DRY skin, then add water to create a foaming lather. In addition, it’s suggested that you continue to add more water while washing your face to increase the foam. “Indian gooseberry revitalizes and restores natural skin clarity while TEAOXI® olive leaf powder delivers natural linoleic acid to maintain moisture. Designed to create a hydrated, silky, and dewy fresh complexion, it helps maintain results of your current weekly treatments for healthy-looking, beautiful skin.” I’ve also used this on wet skin, but the foam was minimal and it left my skin feeling uncleansed.

My issues with this cleanser is that I didn’t feel like it did anything. While it did smell good and the foaming lather was nice, my skin felt slick afterwards — but not in a good, moisturized kind of way. It felt like the cleanser was still there and that it didn’t remove any of my makeup. On a different day, I tried this after I properly removed my makeup with eye makeup remover and cleansing oil. I used this as a follow-up cleanser, and it still felt the same way. Shortly after, I noticed small bumps that arose on my skin — on areas where normally, it would be pretty clear. Overall, I felt that this product was overly-hyped and there are other cleansers out there that do a better, more thorough and reliable job. For me, I still love the masks and have re-purchased them many times. This cleanser, however, was a bust. :(

Retails for $39.00 USD.

REVIEW: Kate Somerville ExfoliKate Intensive Exfoliating Treatment

I am very picky about skincare products in general, so when I find something that I really like — it definitely means something. As of late, I’ve been dabbling into Kate Somerville products. My most recent find is the ExfoliKate Intensive Exfoliating Treatment. As a “dual-action exfoliation method that seemingly smooths away years in as little as two minutes,” the concept of this mask/treatment/exfoliator is fast, easy, and truly effective. You can refer to RAEVIEW’s “Best of Kate Somerville Skincare Video for another additional information on some of her favorite KS products. As a warning, the product does feel tingly on the skin, and I like to leave it on for as long as my skin can tolerate it. Right when it’s border-line burning feeling, I wash the product off. There is a sensitive skin version of this as well, but for me, I think rinsing it off before the 2-minute mark is just as effective.

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Personally, I don’t physical exfoliants like this because I prefer a chemical peel or chemical exfoliant. However, this leave-on product does wonders for my skin. “This signature, expert formula works both physically and enzymatically to deliver safe, dramatic results in one application—and in the comfort of your own home. It effectively combats acne and blackheads, reduces discoloration, and polishes skin for a smooth complexion. Ideal for all skin types except sensitive skin, it harnesses the power of fruit enzymes to clarify skin by removing dead cells and eliminating bacteria. Skin will appear healthy, youthful, and vibrant.” While it is stupidly expensive, it’s worth having in my skincare arsenal since it’s a good product to use for maintenance purposes.

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It exfoliates evenly and my skin is back to baby-smooth and fresh feeling after each use. For me, my routine is to use it when I shower since it can be kind of messy. I remove my makeup at the sink and jump in the shower to wash my hair. After I apply a hair mask to my hair and it’s all pinned up in a claw clip (that I leave in my shower), I apply the ExfoliKate to my damp skin, scrub gently, and leave it on while I’m washing my body, shaving, and letting my hair mask also do its magic. I rinse my hair and body, then gently rub whatever is left of the ExfoliKate on my skin. I rinse and I’m left with baby-smooth skin. I recommend this product if you’re looking to find a good exfoliator as a way to maintain your skin.

Item contains 2 oz.
Retails for $85.00 USD.