From the category archives:

-Prescriptives

There are now a few mascaras with a vibrating brush (Estee Lauder TurboLash, Lancôme Ôscillation, and the very recent Maybelline Pulse Perfection). The main claim of these mascaras is that they can coat the lashes evenly and build up length and volume more easily. Today I am reviewing Prescriptives‘ vibrating mascara, Motor-Eyes Instant Action Mascara.

The mascara comes with a battery, which is inserted into the back of the brush handle before the first use. The mascara wand starts to vibrate when the brush handle is twist-opened.

According to Jullian Veran, Prescriptives’ Director of Artistry, the mascara wand vibrates 125 beats per second and this helps lift, curl and separate the lashes. (See the video clip on Prescriptives’ US site.)

This mascara adds more length than volume, and it separates the lashes effectively. The look it creates is more natural than dramatic. For me, it is not easy to tell how much is achieved by the vibration. (I think the success of a mascara is essentially down to the shape of the brush and the formulation of the pigment.) Nonetheless, this mascara performs relatively well, with no flakes or smudges after a day’s wear. Clumps are very minimal during the application with a sweeping motion.

Motor-Eyes Instant Action Mascara is currently available in one shade (Black, which is a dark grey-black and not an intense black) and is a non-waterproof formula.

Related posts:

YSL Mascara Volume Effect Faux Cils

Illamasqua Volume Mascara

SUQQU Mascara Volume Long

RMK Separate Curl Mascara

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(image from Prescriptives)

Prescriptives‘ summer 2009 makeup collection, Exhilarating, is inspired by the brand’s Calyx fragrance. The colors are fresh and vibrant, and the ad image conveys a carefree and sensuous feel. Today I am reviewing the three new eyeshadows as well as one of the three new lip glosses from the collection.

(U-Pick Eye Colors in Teal, Calyx Green, and Lemondrop)


- U-Pick Eye Colors

Lemondrop (right) is a cream white with a pale champagne undertone and a softly metallic finish, Calyx Green (middle) is a predominantly matte vibrant warm yellow-green, and the softly metallic Teal goes on warmer than it looks in the pan with its yellow-green undertone.

Teal is among the most wearable teals that I have come across in terms of creating a soft daytime look. It works well with Lemondrop, which has a similar warm pale yellow undertone and the same soft metallic finish.

Calyx Green can be a strong accent color when the three shades are used together. It can look quite bold and funky for those with a fair complexion, while I think it can work even better and look really gorgeous for those with a dark complexion.

All the shades go on easily, layer well, and have a good staying power.

- Calyx Exhilarating Lip Gloss in Pink Grapefruit

Pink Grapefruit is one of the three lip gloss shades in the collection, along with Mango and Guava. It is a sheer warm pink-red with nicely sparse shimmery particles, which are mostly red and gold. (I personally prefer lip glosses with sparse shimmery particles to those with intense shimmer.)

It has a pleasantly light watery-gel and non-sticky texture. It goes on smoothly and imparts a wet glossy finish that lasts well. I like the juicy and translucent look that it creates.

It has a very light fruity scent that is not overpowering.

Prescriptives’ summer 2009 collection also includes four shades of Exhilarating Lip Color and Calyx Sheer Exhilarating fragrance (50ml). All items in the collection are limited editions.

Related posts on Prescriptives:

Spring 2008 Makeup Collection

Creamy Eye Color, Plush Blush & Magic Liquid Powder

Flawless Skin & AnyWear Foundations

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Plum is not really one of my favorite makeup colors to wear, as it is a little too warm and dark for my complexion. (I prefer more purple shades for eyes and slightly lighter shades for lips.) But I do have a few plum-colored sweaters and scarves, which I enjoy wearing in winter.

For me, plum is a beautiful color to look at. I love its richness and elegance as well as its understated femininity.

Makeup
Lavshuca Jewelry Lips
Lavshuca Face Powder in Lucent
MAC Paint Pot in Nice Vice (from the Fafi collection)
Prescriptives Colorscope Eye Color in plum (right of photo)
Prescriptives Colorscope Eye Color in Aubergine (bottom of photo)

Fragrance
Stella McCartney STELLA Eau de Parfum
Stella McCartney Sheer STELLA Eau de Toilette 2004 & 2005

Bodycare
Stella McCartney STELLA Precious Body Cream
ESPA Detoxifying Salt Scrub (to be reviewed next month)

Home Fragrance
Stella McCartney STELLA Scented Candle

More Splashes of Colors:

Gorgeous Gold


Lilting Lilac


Girlie Pink

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Prescriptives has been releasing Colorscope Refillable Palettes for Eyes and Cheeks for the past few holiday seasons. Today I am reviewing the 2008 version in Cool.

The palette is packaged in a zip-up faux-leather pouch with a silvery finish. It includes six eyeshadows, two blushers and a double-ended eyeshadow brush.




The three darker shades are:
- matte dark grey
- iridescent plum red
- metallic medium taupe

All these shades are smooth and very well-pigmented.

The three lighter shades are:
- light blue (softly iridescent) with a lilac undertone
- light golden beige (very metallic)
- off-white cream (pearly)

The light golden beige is richly pigmented, while the other two are more softly pigmented.

(The blue/lilac and the plum red are existing shades in the Colorscope Eye Color range (Lilac Frost and Plum Smoke).The rest four are exclusive to this palette.)

My two favorite shades are Lilac Frost and the medium taupe. Lilac Frost looks slightly more blue than lilac and is a good subtle shade for brightening the eyes. The color comes mainly from the soft iridescence, so it doesn’t leave the eye area unnaturally pale or flat. The metallic taupe is a nice shadowing shade and is more of a brown taupe (which I prefer) than a grey taupe. The metallic finish lasts well and doesn’t turn ashy or muddy overtime.


The palette for 2007 contains a blusher and a highlighter. This year’s version has two blushers: a matte soft warm pink (the same blusher as the one in the 2007 palette) and a dusty pink with minimal shimmer and a subtly glowy finish. (The two shades are Petal and Apple Blossom, respectively, in the Colorscope Cheek Color range).

Both shades are well-pigmented. Do use them sparingly if you want a subtle look. I personally prefer Petal, which creates a natural flush for the cheeks. (It can also be built to a more vibrant finish.)

Even though this is the cooler version of the two palettes (see the Warm version here), it has a well-balanced selection of warm and cool shades to suit most complexions. It should work for both the party season and the rest of the year.

Other holiday 2008 posts:

Dior Night Diamond

RMK Christmas Palette 2008

Bobbi Brown Copper Diamond Shimmer Brick

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(image from Prescriptives)

As the weather is cooling down for autumn, we will start to hear about all the holiday collections.

Prescriptives will once again bring out two versions of Colorscope Refillable Palettes for Eyes and Cheeks, one in Warm and one in Cool (pictured above). (See my review of the 2007 version here.)

Each palette includes:

- six (full-size) Colorscope Eye Colors
- two (full-size) Colorscope Cheek Colors
- Double-Ended Color & Contour Brush
- refillable compact

All the full-size slots give you the flexibility of customizing your own palette with other Colorscope Eye and Cheek Colors.

The two palettes and the rest of the Prescriptives Holiday Gift Set Collection will be available in the UK from October 13.

Other Posts on Prescriptives:

Spring 2008 Makeup Collection

Primer, Concealer and Cleanser Review

Flawless Skin and AnyWear Foundation

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(Prescriptives Lip Strips in Techno Cool
& Blush More or Less in Thai Orchid)

Prescriptives’ spring 2008 collection, The Technotropics, features vibrant-looking but very wearable colors. Here I review two items from this collection.


Lip Strips
in Techno Cool (limited-edition)

This compact includes five lip glosses with mostly cooler pinks. (Tropical Warm features five warmer shades.) The darkest shade (second from the top) is relatively pigmented as a lip gloss while the rest four are quite sheer. The top shade has no shimmer, and the middle three shades have subtle shimmer. The bottom white-ish shade has a lot of quite sparkling shimmer, and the finish is too intensely shimmery for my liking. But the product design does allow the user to easily mix two or more colors together, particularly any two adjoining shades.

My observation of most lip glosses in this semi-solid form is that they don’t usually give a watery or glassy shine. The finish tends to be more of a luminous sheen, which sometimes can look a little oily. While the finishes of these glosses are more balmy than greasy, personally I’d prefer a more watery shine.

Blush More or Less Creamy Cheek Color in Thai Orchid

I find that the Prescriptive website seems to have quite an accurate description of the texture of this product. This cream blusher is described to have “the smoothness of a cream and the lightness of a mousse”. Indeed, this is not like most cream blushers which can feel a little greasy, and the texture is light and almost mousse-like. (But it is not as mousse-y or spongy as, for example, Maybelline’s Dream Mousse Cheek Color.)

What impresses me about this formulation is that the mousse-like texture makes blending very easy, which is particularly vital for a blusher. It dries to a smooth semi-powdery finish with very subtle luminosity. It has a fairly satisfactory staying powder.

Thai Orchid appears to be a very intense rosy red. But it can easily be worn with varying intensity and it looks very natural worn sheer.

Between the two items, I much prefer the blusher. But the lip compact, which is the size of a typical round foundation case, can be a competent space-saver during traveling and go with various eye and cheek looks if you enjoy the balmy finishes.

Related Posts:

Blushers:

Albion Eprise Water Cheek Color
(another non-powder formulation that works well)

Ayura Aura Veil α in Sweet Pink

(perfect for spring)

Lip Glosses:

Lunasol Full Glamor Gloss in Bright Pink
(one of my favorites)

Rimmel Underground Light Beam Lip Gloss
(natural watery sheen)

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(Prescriptives Magic Liquid Powder in Red Neutralizer,
Creamy Eye Color in Moonstone,
Plush Blush for Cheeks and Lips
in Ibiza Sunset (left) and Balinese Peach (right))


Here is the report of my latest Prescriptives trials. Please enjoy!

Creamy Eye Color in Moonstone

(Prescriptives Creamy Eye Color)
(image from www.prescriptives.com)


This product has quite a thick cream texture. It dries up very quickly upon application, so swift blending is vital. Moonstone is a white with a pearly sheen and some shimmering particles.

What impresses me the most is how the color and shimmer stay put. Once it dries, the color really sets on the lids. It doesn’t smudge or move. Also, with Moonstone’s bright hue, I am surprised to see that the finish stays fresh for hours. Throughout the day, it always appears that I’ve just put it on and there is very little fading.

Plush Blush for Cheeks and Lips in Balinese Peach and Ibiza Sunset


(Plush Blush for Cheeks and Lips)
(image from www.prescriptives.com)


On the Prescriptives website, this product is accurately described as providing “a sheer wash of dewy color” for the cheeks. The finish is indeed very sheer. Even for someone like me, who likes medium-to-sheer blushers, I think they are a bit too sheer. (The color won’t show very well unless you have a very light skin-tone.) What the product adds is mostly a dewy sheen to the cheek area. Used for the lips, they offer a semi-matte finish with a soft metallic sheen. Again, there is only a very sheer veil of color.

Balinese Peach has a slight tinge of warm pink, while Ibiza Sunset is a very sheer warm gold with a little more shimmer.

Magic Liquid Powder in Red Neutralizer

(Magic Liquid Powder in Red Neutralizer)
(image from www.prescriptives.com)

This product claims to minimize lines, pores, and wrinkles and to mute redness. For me, it doesn’t minimize pores. (It certainly doesn’t minimize my pores nearly as well as some of my other loose powder.) Also, it doesn’t neutralize redness. It does provide a golden sheen, which is supposed to even out redness. But, at least on my face, it doesn’t do what it is supposed to do. The powder mainly gives a bit of soft luminosity to the skin. For me, I’d like my loose powder to do more.

Part of the powder does melt in contact with skin and provides a pleasantly cooling sensation. Usually I use a powder puff to apply loose powder, but, with this, the application is much more successful with a fluffy powder brush.

Other Prescriptives Reviews:

Flawless Skin and AnyWear Foundations

Magic Illuminating Potion in Red Neutralizer, Better Off Fast-Acting Makeup Remover, and Site Unseen Brightening Concealer

Related Posts:

Lavshuca Face Powder in Lucent

(It has everything I want from a loose powder!)

Makeup Essentials: White Eyeshadows
(Brighten your eyes with them!)

Anna Sui Face Color Accent

(Beautifully packaged and gives you rosy cheeks.)

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(Prescriptives Colorscope Refillable Palette
for Eyes and Cheeks in Cool)
(image from www.prescriptives.com)


Prescriptives has come up with two wearable and good-value makeup palettes for holiday 2007. The palette in Cool I am reviewing here includes six pink and plum-based shades for eyes and two shades for cheeks.

For the eyeshadows, I have categorized them into highlighting, main, and eye-lining shades:

Highlighting -
Chiffon: cream white with pearlescent shimmer, suitable as a base or a highlighter

(Chiffon)


Main (from left to right/ light to dark) -
Shell: pale dusty pink with pearlescent shimmer
Hocus: light taupe with pearlescent shimmer
Aubergine: brownish plum with metallic shimmer

(Shell, Hocus, and Aubergine)


Eye-lining -
Indigo: dark charcoal grey with minimal shimmer
Plum: brownish plum with minimal shimmer

(Indigo and Plum)


(Color-wise, Aubergine is almost as dark as Plum, but it has a lot more shimmer and, for me, it doesn’t bring much depth to my eyes as an eye-lining shade.)

The six shades blend well and can be easily coordinated to create simple and sophisticated daytime looks and intense evening looks.

Cheek Colors:
Petal: a matte warm pink
Highlighter Cool Light: a very pale pink with frosty shimmer

(Petal and Highlighter Cool Light)

Petal is a very wearable blusher shade. Highlighter Cool Light can be worn with Petal to bring a veil of shimmer to the matte finish of Patel. Another great way to wear this cheek highlighter is to layer it right on the center of cheeks to make the cheeks pop and to bring out the dimension of the face.

All the shades are quite well pigmented, with Highlighter Cool Light being sheer and shimmery. (These are all regular shades and not limited-edition ones. The silver stripes on the cheek colors featured in the palette in the top photo are spray-ons.)

The palette comes with a nicely big mirror. The limited-edition double-ended eyeshadow brush features a soft medium brush for eyeshadow application and a slightly slanted flat-tip brush, which is good for blending. You will need another brush to line your eyes with the darker shades.

The sizes of the eyeshadows and blushers are the same as the usual sizes they come in. The palette itself is refillable, so you can also add in your favorite shades to customize your own palette. (The slots for blushers will hold two eyeshadows each.)

The palette also comes in Warm:

(Prescriptives Colorscope Refillable Palatte
for Eyes and Cheeks in Warm)
(image from www.prescriptives.com)


Overall, the palettes offer good ranges of shades and further flexibility of customization. Retailed at 38 pounds in the UK, it is relatively good value considering all the shades are worth around 100 pounds when bought separately. This is also a good starter palette to consider if you are interested in trying wearable shades by Prescriptives.

Related Posts for Holiday 2007:

Lavshuca Christmas 2007 Makeup Palette

(cute and affordable)

DiorLight Jewelled Necklace
(sparkling with Swarovski crystals)

Paul & Joe Lip Gloss N
(perfect berry-red lip gloss)

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(Prescriptives Better Off Fast-Acting Makeup Remover,
Magic Illuminating Potion in Red Neutralizer,
and Site Unseen Brightening Concealer SPF 15)


Prescriptives is generally renowned for base makeup products. I am going to review two of them, plus a water-proof makeup remover. Let’s dive straight in.

Magic Illuminating Potion in Red Neutralizer:

It is a primer that is supposed to even out redness. I understand what the product is trying do, as it imparts some yellow and green shimmer which attempts to cancel out redness. But overall, the shimmer sits on top of the redness (which is still visible) instead of neutralizing it.

Basically it is a primer that adds quite a lot of luminosity to the face (which can be a little too shiny for some people), and it is also able to alter the finish of your foundation. (My matte powder foundation takes on a more luminous finish.)

However, the overall texture is slightly too greasy and the finish is too shiny for my personal liking (apart from the fact that it doesn’t neutralize my redness).

Site Unseen Brightening Concealer SPF 15:
(with titanium dioxide to protect against UVA rays)

As we know, there are many products in the same category as YSL’s Touche Éclat, and this is one of them. Some of these products rely more on light-reflective particles while some use more opaque pigments. I think Prescriptives’ version is more toward the opaque-pigment end of the spectrum. Apart from that, the consistency is very creamy and it dries quite quickly, so swift blending is essential. It can be used as a general cream concealer for the face.

For covering imperfections around the eye area, I have noticed that, to reach the desired effect, it is better to put on the needed amount all at once and keep blending. Don’t layer and layer, as it will cake easily.

(Prescriptives Sight Unseen Brightening Concealer SPF 15)
(image from www.prescriptives.com)

The brush is wider than that of most other similar products, so it is not particularly designed for precision concealing. It is more for sweeping across slightly larger areas. Overall, as long as the blending is done speedily, the coverage is relatively satisfactory.

Better Off Fast-Acting Waterproof Makeup Remover:

This is a dual-phase makeup remover for eye and lip makeup. I always go for a dual-phase formula since it is able to dissolve makeup quickly and only very little rubbing and tugging is required for effective removal.

This one doesn’t disappoint me. It cleanses effectively and doesn’t irritate my eyes. It doesn’t leave any greasy residue, but I do suspect that it could possibly be a bit drying for some people. (I don’t have a particular preference regarding this, and I don’t mind some slightly oily residue since I always wash my whole face thoroughly after taking off the eye and lip makeup.)

Overall this is something worth considering, but do bear in mind that there are less expensive options that can preform equally well.

Related Posts:

Prescriptives Foundation Review: Flawless Skin & AnyWear
(Find out which one I prefer.)

My Foundation Routine
(as requested by one of you)

My Skincare Routine
(featuring my favorite makeup remover)

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(Left: Prescriptives AnyWear
Multi-Finish Compact Foundation SPF 12
Right: Prescriptives Flawless Skin
Total Protection Makeup SPF 15)

If I can only wear one makeup product before I go out, it will undoubtedly be a foundation. My foundation has to perform and I am very picky about my choice.

Here are the results of my latest trials!

Prescriptives Flawless Skin
Total Protection Makeup SPF 15

(photo from www.prescriptives.com)


Judging by the name, I thought it would offer medium-to-full protection. But the coverage is basically slightly less than medium. It doesn’t fully cover up all the imperfections, but it does naturally minimize them to a certain extent and my skin looks brighter and smoother. I guess it is “flawless” in the sense that the skin looks naturally radiant and subtly glowy (but not made-up).

The texture of this liquid foundation is very runny, which I rather like. Also, the good slip makes the foundation adhere to my skin well.

I usually dust some loose powder to set a liquid foundation and to take away most of the shine. (I prefer a matte finish.) This foundation lasted fairly well this way.

A minor complaint: I wish it came with a spatula attached to the lid or with a pump, which will make dispensing easier. (I have noticed on Makeup Alley that some people think the runny texture is way too fiddly when it comes to dispensing the product. What I do is that I put my finger on top and flip the bottle upside down and back. It gives me enough amount on my finger for almost the whole face.)

I have oily skin and very occasional blemishes. Some liquid foundations give me breakouts the next day, and a couple of them do so even before I take them off. I have been using this on and off, and so far there are no problems.

(I usually don’t use a liquid foundation for more than two days in a row. Nowadays a lot of liquid foundations have many moisturizing ingredients and they are like moisturizers with pigments. Breakouts are likely to appear on my face for all the extra emollients. When I do occasionally want to use a liquid foundation, I cut the amount of daytime moisturizer by about one-third to minimize the possibility of breakouts. But I also try to use a liquid foundation with proper anti-UVA/UVB ingredients so that my sun protection is not sacrificed.)


Prescriptives AnyWear
Multi-Finish Compact Foundation SPF 12

(photo from www.prescriptives.com)


This would be an obvious daily choice for my oily skin and for an efficient foundation routine.

When I used it for the first time, I was not impressed at all. The powder seemed very dry, the finish was very chalky and rough, and pores were not concealed. Also, the coverage was too sheer for my liking.

Later, it occurred to me that maybe it was because of the sponge, since it simply didn’t “grab” the powder easily and the power didn’t go on smoothly. So, for the second time, I used my usual ZA powder foundation sponge. The finish improved tremendously. (It shows yet again just how important makeup tools are!)

Compared with the first application, my face looked much smoother (no chalkiness) and the pores were better concealed. Apart from a reasonable staying power, it actually absorbs oil quite well.

The coverage is still too sheer for me so I probably won’t use it alone. (I prefer a medium coverage.) I will use it as a finishing powder or just for touch-up.

Among the two, in terms of coverage and finish, I am surprised that I actually prefer Flawless Skin (as a powder foundation user most of the time). With it, my skin looks radiant in a very natural way. But the application of a liquid foundation takes so much longer than a powder foundation that I will only use it when I have very ample time.

Currently, (Shiseido’s) ZA two-way foundation is still my top choice.

Related Post:

My Staple Foundation Products
(as a very picky foundation user)

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