Love This! Urban Decay Razor Sharp Ultra Definition Finishing Powder

I got this item on sale at the Urban Decay website.  I’ve been in desperate need of a new finishing powder (I’ve been using barely-any-left containers for about a month now!), and I’m willing to try just about anything Urban Decay makes, so it seemed like a good idea.  Unfortunately, I only bought two…

Pros:  Very fine, smooth texture.  Paraben-free.  Neutral color.  Matte finish.

Cons:  Expensive (originally).  Probably discontinued.  Very strange/inconvenient packaging.

In Summary:  Seriously, this is the weirdest packaging I’ve ever seen for a face powder product.  I apply my powder with a brush, so the best way I’ve found to make this work was to rip out the sponge-y thing and dispense the product into the lid to use with a brush.  (I’m on the lookout for a container I can put this into to make it more user-friendly.)  Other than the weird package, the powder is AMAZING.  It’s super-fine, not too light colored – like some products, including UD “De-Slick” powder – and looks great.  I’m kind of sad I got this from the sale section, because it’s probably discontinued.  Even more sad:  they’re sold out online.  Because I would totally go and order more.

Rating:  4.5 out of 5 stars 4.5-stars

Price:  Originally $31 USD  (I got it for $10 USD)

Available at:  ???

Made in:  USA

urban decay razor sharp ultra definition finishing powder

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Review: Revlon (powder) Blush

Blush is – by far – the most difficult product for me to find.  Apparently, I’m picky about it.  I want it to be smooth but not shimmery and provide a decent amount of color without having to put so much on that it starts to look “cake-y”.   Revlon seems to make consistently decent stuff, so I was willing to try this.  Plus, it only cost me 11 cents…

Pros: Contains some natural/botanical ingredients (extracts of ginkgo biloba, green tea, grape seed, panax ginseng root, and aloe barbadensis leaf).  Paraben-free.  Affordable.  Smooth texture.  Good amount of pigment.

Cons: I don’t think the color name of the one I bought is very accurate.  The packaging is a little difficult to open, especially if you’re trying to maintain a manicure.   As with most drug store brands, the brush is practically useless.  The mirror is very small.  And, apparently this is discontinued.

In Summary:  I was surprised by the quality of this blush, because I wasn’t expecting much from it.  I actually put WAY too much blush on my brush, expecting “cheap” quality and had to blend it with some neutral powder to tone it down a bit.  Considering I practically got it for free, I’m extremely happy.  Sadly, it looks like this particular item has been discontinued, as there’s a new formulation of the product .  It has a different style of packaging, and no botanical ingredients.  😦  Hopefully, the store will have some other colors on clearance when I go tomorrow!

Rating:  4.5 out of 5 stars  4.5-stars

Price:  Approx. $7 (USD)

Available at:  ??? apparently discontinued.  (Got mine at CVS drug store.)

Made in:  USA

Note:  Mine is in different packaging and didn't come with the cool slide-out mirror. :-(

Note: Mine is in different packaging and didn’t come with the cool slide-out mirror. Color shown: Smoky rose.

Woe is Me

A while back, I went through my (massive) collection of beauty products, to find out which ones contained parabens.  (read post here:   http://wp.me/p1Z8Rq-7w)   I judiciously labeled all paraben-containing product with “The Scarlet Letter”.  OK, so it was black Sharpie, and it was a “P”, not an “A”, but you get the idea.  Items marked with “P” were the ones I chose to use until they were gone and then find a non-paraben-containing replacement product.  (Many things were thrown away, because they were old anyway, because I didn’t love them, or because they were free.  I only kept the stuff I really love and/or cost a lot of money.)

And then…   I’ve been running low on my pressed powder and asked for it for my birthday.  My wonderful husband (who has learned to shop from “the wish list”) bought some for me.  It’s Too Faced Absolutely Invisible Pressed Powder.  Because I got a new one, I was able to see the ingredients.  (I was too lazy to look them up when I did the “Paraben Project”, I suppose…)  Guess what?  Parabens.  Boo!

To Make Things Worse:   The powder I used before falling in love with Too Faced – Amazing Cosmetics’ Powder Set – also contains parabens.  So does Urban Decay’s “De-Slick” Mattifying Powder (which I don’t love, but use because I have it!)  Additionally, I’ve been buying the Too Faced stuff because I can get it at the military exchange, which is both convenient and less expensive.  They only carry a few “prestige” brands and Too Faced happens to be one of them.

What’s a Girl to Do?   Anybody out there know of a (high quality) pressed powder that doesn’t contain parabens?!?!?  Pressed powder has been a staple of my beauty regimen since I was a teenager.  I can’t imagine having to go through life without a pressed powder compact in my purse!  I guess it’s time for a trip to Ulta or Sephora to hunt down an eventual-replacement item.  Hopefully I’m able to explore on my own and not be approached by a well-meaning store associate.  I can already picture them trying not to roll their eyes as I explain all my criteria for beauty purchases (paraben and phthalate free, not made in China, has to work for hyper-oily skin).  Fingers crossed for either A:  A patient, helpful store associate.  or B:  A bunch of store associates that are too busy to “help” me.  🙂

Thumbs-Down: Revlon Photo Ready Pressed Powder

I wear translucent pressed powder almost all the time – even when I wear mineral makeup.  I’m in love with Too Faced Absolutely Invisible pressed powder, but have been looking for a more budget-friendly alternative, so I tried this one out at one point.  Here’s what I thought…

Pros:  Paraben-free.  Made in USA (but of “U.S. and non-U.S. components”).  Inexpensive.  (You can use coupons to buy it – I guess that’s a “pro”.)  Goes on pretty well, if you use a decent brush.

Cons:  Sparkly.  Very sparkly.  Cheaply-made brush.  I don’t know why it’s white, even though it’s “translucent’.  Nobody has white skin – why not make it at least off-white?  If you accidentally put too much on, it looks white-ish.

In Summary:  I’ve been pretty satisfied with Revlon’s Photo Ready Foundation (although it’s not working as well since my skin went into oil-producing overdrive), but this stuff is just disappointing.  I guess if you were going out to a club, it might be OK.  It’s a bit much for everyday use.

Rating:  1.5 out of 5 stars  

Price:  approx $12

Available at:  drug stores, mass merchandisers, drugstore.com