Review: Caudalie Makeup Remover Cleansing Water

I seem to be running through quite a lot of makeup cleansing waters – but just as well, since I use so much makeup anyway! I’m always on the lookout for cleansing waters that can remove makeup a) even more easily, b) affordably and 3) does not dry out my skin. The Caudalie Makeup Remover Cleansing Water is a meant to be a “soap-free cleansing water that effectively removes makeup while cleansing and toning the skin”. It’s also free from parabens, phthalates, and sulfates – but not that I know what difference that makes, but I guess it’s good!

Claims from website:
This gentle formula removes makeup from the face and eyes as it soothes, moisturizes, and softens skin. There’s no need to rub for a thorough clean— a gentle cleansing base washes without stripping. The improved formula is now more natural, more effective, and gentler on skin.

The texture and consistency is just like water. The packaging is simple, with a screw on cap and no pump, so to get the product out, just open the cap and turn it upside down. Unlike most micellar waters though, this is rather heavily scented – I did like fresh scent, but I would recommend giving it a sniff before purchase if you’re sensitive to smells.

In terms of performance, I don’t think that it does that great a job. This takes quite a lot of a) product and b) cotton pads to remove a full face of makeup. Without help of other cleansers, it takes 3-4 goes across the same area to properly remove most traces of makeup. Like most cleansing waters, this failed at removing waterproof eye makeup. That said, it did not irritate my skin despite it being heavily scented, nor does it dry out my skin. I actually feel quite refreshed, and my skin rather soothed, after using it!

I can’t remember how much this cost, as I got mine with points I had on a website, but a quick google shows that a 6.7oz/200ml will cost US$28 in the US or €14.40 in Europe. That’s pretty pricey for me, as there are a lot of affordable Japanese brands of cleansing waters available here in Singapore that does a better job, so I won’t be repurchasing this.

Rating: 3.5/5

Midweek Peek #7: Sample Testing with IOPE skincare

Recently got my hands on a trial set of IOPE Super Vital skincare range – with Softener, Emulsion, Serum, Cream and Eye Cream. I’ve gone crazy about Korean skincare lately; I think a lot of Koreans have gorgeous skin. I’ve heard that Koreans have up to 10 steps in their skincare routine!

IOPE is quite a popular skincare brand in Korea, and owned by the giant makeup and skincare company AmorePacific. The products are pricey so I recently bought a trial set online from the Super Vital range to try it out! Just a really quick overview on this set; I think the trial sizes are too small to truly give a review on the efficacy and impact it has made on my skin but I really wanted to do an “initial thoughts” or “first impressions” update on this.

I liked the Softener as it made my skin feel really moist, but the scent is so intensely overpowering. The emulsion feels light and great for day time, even under makeup. The serum is a very lightweight yellow fluid that sinks in immediately and my personal favourite out of the 5 products. The cream feels too thick and heavy; I would say might be better in a cold winter but sadly it’s hot all year round where I live. The eye cream is nice – it’s rather thick but sinks in well without feeling oily.

In all, I thought that this was a rather good set for anyone with dry skin as I do feel that my skin feels well moisturised and soft. However, the one big turn off I had was how almost all of them are so heavily fragranced, especially the Softener. I won’t be purchasing the full size because of how intensely scented the products are – it might not have caused any skin allergies, but it did give me a headache from how strong it smelt!

That’s all for this week’s midweek peek! Have you tried IOPE too?

Review: Clarins Extra Comfort Cleansing Cream

Another Caroline Hirons induced purchase – the Clarins Extra Comfort Cleansing Cream. I’ve been using this for a couple of months, and recently heard that this is being replaced with a new version called ‘Extra Comfort Anti Pollution Cleansing Cream’, so I thought I’d better get this review out asap just in case it’s still in stock! I’ve checked with a few counters in Singapore, and they’re still available. This huge 200ml pot costs S$60.

Claims from Website:
Pure comfort for skin that is extremely dry or easily irritated. Rich, creamy formula—with Clarins’ blend of Shea Butter and Jojoba Oil —gently lifts-off make-up, impurities and flaky cells leaving skin smooth, moisture-balanced and perfectly relaxed. Rinse or tissue-off.

In terms of packaging, this comes in a huge pot with a screw on lid, which I don’t like; the thought of sticking my fingers with all its germs into an open pot terrifies me. Plus, the pot is so big I’m always terrified of overturning it all with my clumsy fingers – not the most convenient packaging!

The product itself is like a thick cream, very smooth but not watery, with a thick enough consistency that it keeps its shape for a while. It does not foam up at all. I do like the texture because it feels very soothing and comforting on my dry skin – it’s like washing my face with moisturizer.

The recommended way of using it by Clarins is to scoop a walnut-size amount, warm between both palms and then place hands flat, without pressing, over the entire face and lift briskly away to create a suction effect to remove makeup and grime, followed by rinsing thoroughly with water. My own personal preferred way is to massage it all over my face and then rinse off, because it feels good and I am too lazy to be suctioning my entire face.

This claims to remove makeup but I don’t find it as efficient. Even after 2 washes, I can still find remnants of face makeup on my skin, and it is hopeless against eye makeup. It does, however, rinse off well without any oily residue despite being so creamy and chock full of butters and oils. I find that if my skin is having a rough time, or going through a really dry and itchy phase, this usually works well in calming it down as opposed to using foaming cleansers which tends to aggravate it further.

Verdict? I really like it for how luxurious it feels on my dry skin. I wouldn’t recommend it for anyone just looking for something to remove their makeup or wants to be squeaky clean, but more of a pampering or soothing cleanse, after all the makeup has already been removed.

Rating: 3.5/5

Final Swatch #1: Bobbi Brown Bronze Tortoiseshell Eye Palette

A sign that you’re obsessed with makeup is when you start having feelings for your makeup and can’t bear to part with them, even though you have not used them for ages. In my effort to reduce my stash, I gave away some of my old makeup – I know, some may think that this is not nice, but friends who receive them are fully aware of how old these are and wanted them, so I was not going to stop them. Anyway, I wanted to say goodbye to some of the more loved or memorable ones, like a final goodbye to them, for all the colors they’ve brought to my life!

The first up is the Bobbi Brown Bronze Tortoiseshell Eye Palette – this had a lot of sentimental value for me, and I almost didn’t want to give it away but I had not touched it for so long – I can’t even remember when I last touched it! This was the first makeup item that the bf bought for me, along with a makeup class session by Bobbi Brown – that’s when I know I’ve found the perfect bf! 😛 Sadly I didn’t actually use the palette much, as most of the colours look a bit odd on me and were also on the sheer side. I did use one color all the time when I first received it, so there’s a huge dent in one pan. I love the tortoiseshell packaging though!

When this post goes up, this palette would have left my hands forever. But hopefully, it will continue to be loved by someone else! 🙂

Review: Bobbi Brown Shimmer Blush in Coral

The Bobbi Brown Shimmer Blush in Coral is described on the official website as “a soft coral”. To my eye, it’s a medium-dark coral, leaning more towards orange, with gold shimmers.

My favourite part of this blush is the packaging – it is very flat and square, with no wasted space or useless cheap applicators. It’s plastic, with a clear window on the flip top, but has no mirror. The blush pan can be easily lifted out and reassembled into a larger palette. I just love how travel friendly it is, and how little space it takes up!

The texture is soft and silky smooth, but it is not powdery at all. The pigmentation is amazing, and I find that applying it sheer or full on actually gives different effects – applied sheer, it pulls more coral-pink, but with a heavier hand, it appears more orange-coral. As it blends out easily and evenly, I don’t have to be too careful about applying too much like some other highly pigmented blushes. Despite the shimmer, I don’t find it emphasizing my pores; I really like how it gives me a lovely summer glow.

Coral lasted well past eight hours on my cheeks without fading. For 4g of product, S$42 does sound pricy but I think the quality makes it well worth it.

Rating: 4.5/5

EOTD #2: Neutral Eye with a Green/Blue Pop of Color

A quick EOTD for the day. I woke up late and my hands automatically reached out the usual neutral shades, and before I knew it I was half way through a neutral eye. But I decided to jazz things up a bit, so I added a little green and blue – I think it makes a nice contrast without too much extra effort. That said, I should have spent that extra 2 minutes blending out my eyeshadow as I can see some harsh lines, but I really couldn’t be bothered since noone can tell when my eyes are open…

Products used:

  1. Too Faced Shadow Insurance; all over lid, crease and browbone
  2. Chanel Les 4 Ombres Quadra Eyeshadow in 35 Rives; the beige shade all over lids, white shade to highlight browbone, the darkest brown shade to run along the lashes
  3. Dior 5 Couleurs Eyeshadow Palette in 654 Aurora; the brown shade on outer third of lids
  4. Burberry Pale Barley, in the crease as transition shade
  5. Rimmel Scandaleyes 014 Bright Blue, to line outerhalf of undereye
  6. Make Up Store Metallic Crazy Lazy, to line innerhalf of undereye
  7. Essence Liquid Eyeliner, to line along upper lash line

The colours are appearing a bit more dull than in real life; it was a cloudy and rainy day when I took the picture. Hopefully after the monsoon season and the sun comes back I can get some good pictures with better lighting!

Review: Too Faced Shadow Insurance

Another review on an eyelid primer – I wrote about the Elf Eyelid Primer recently, and how it was a cheap alternative that helps eyeshadows last longer. Today I’ll be touching on something that costs quite a lot more – the Too Faced Shadow Insurance. For 0.35oz, this costs about USD 20. So let’s see if this is worth the price!

Claims on website: 
This is your full-coverage insurance policy against all fading, creasing, melting, blurring, oil slicked, and hard-to-blend eye shadow accidents. Our silicone based eye shadow primer transforms any eyeshadow into a perfectly blendable, color-drenched, intensified version of itself, then locks it down perfectly until you take it off. This soothing formula evens out the skintone on your lids and smooths lines while securing a barrier between the oils of your skin and your makeup.

According to the website, this eyelid primer is formulated without parabens, sulfates, synthetic fragrances, synthetic dyes, petrochemicals and phthalates. I’m not a chemistry graduate, so I have no idea what difference that made but I assume it means it’s better for you.

The Shadow Insurance comes in a slim tube packaging; I like it as it allows me to easily control the amount I squeeze out and I can cut it open to reach any remaining product as I use it up so any wastage is minimized. The product itself is beige in color but goes on sheer, with very minimal color translating on the eyelids. The texture is smooth, spreads easily, does not feel sticky nor too slippery; it’s also very lightweight.

Even though this is expensive, just a tiny amount covers the whole lid; I just squeeze a bit out and blend it all over my lids with my finger. I find that the Shadow Insurance did very well in terms of keeping my eye makeup from creasing or fading all day. Because of its ability to make eyeshadows ‘stick’, I do try to let it dry down a bit before placing stronger or darker colours, or it will be harder to blend it out.

As compared to the Elf Eyelid Primer, the Shadow Insurance fared better, in my opinion, in making eyeshadows look more vibrant and blending eyeshadows over it was a bit smoother. If I’m reaching for something that is less pigmented, I would definitely use this as it helps amplifies the color payoff. That said, I still find that the other primer by Too Faced, the Glitter Glue, a much better companion for glitters and shimmering pigments.

In short, an absolutely great eyelid primer and I do think that it’s worth the price.

Rating: 4/5

What’s your favourite eyelid primer?