Open to comments | The Bronze Giveaway

Thursday, September 29, 2011

I wanted to give it a few days first, but – this giveaway is now open to comment entries! Leave me a note in the comments below, then click the appropriate “I did this” button.

You don’t have to follow or tweet to leave a comment entry, but you’re more than welcome to for extra chances!

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Get glowing (without the sparkly, shimmery stuff) | Caudalie Beauty Elixir review

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

The product: Caudalie Beauty Elixir

I’ve long been a believer in the fact that “charged waters” and “facial mists” are, more or less, just marketing garble. I mean – the Evian spray is, literally, just water in an aerosol bottle; MAC Fix+ is reputedly not a lot more than water, cucumber extract, and glycerine (though I’ll admit that I do intend to try it eventually); and have you smelled some of the herbal sprays? Good lord!

I have to say, though: Caudalie might just have me questioning my own beliefs.

The Caudalie site says to apply their Beauty Elixer both “before your moisturizer and at any time of day,” as well as “between your foundation and powder to perfectly set makeup.” They say it’s simply an “anti-dullness complexion treatment,” made for all skin lacking radiance.

I don’t know if it’s really “treating” my complexion, and I don’t think  my skin’s gotten any more radient since I started using it, but it certainly gives the impression of radiance.

And I mean, that has to count for something, right?

My favourite part about Caudalie’s Beauty Elixir is that it contains a few drops of peppermint oil, so it’s significantly more refreshing than just splashing water on your face. I do have to be extremely careful to keep it away from my super-sensitive eyes, but I’d say it’s worth it!

I didn’t start using this until the tail end of summer, but it would have been perfect for hot summer days. I’m actually really enjoying it right now, too, though – it’s a nice “moisture burst” that helps combat the dry prairie air, whether or not I’ve already applied my moisturizer and makeup.

The ingredients:

Aqua, alcohol, citrus aurantium amara flower water, parfum, rosmarinus officinalis leaf oil, potassium alum, glycerin, mentha piperita oil, commiphora myrrha extract, styrax benzoin resin extract, melissa officinalis leaf oil, rosa damascena flower oil, vitis vinifera fruit extract, tocopherol, citral, citronellol, farnesol, geraniol, limonene, linalool.

The verdict?

Okay, so the Beauty Elixir isn’t all that necessary, and it’s far from life-changing. If you like the scent, though (some people find it a little too… organic-smelling, if you will) and you’re on the market for a new facial spray, give this one a go.

I’d recommend it for normal to dry skin types – it does give a great glow to my parched skin, but I’m not sure how well it would work with oilier complexions. But it’s paraben- and silicone-free, and surprisingly, it doesn’t irritate my sensitive skin at all, so I’ll be keeping it around!

P.S.

If you already have this and you’re not quite sure how to use it, here are a few tips: (more…)

theNotice turns four (and has four gifts to give away!)

Monday, September 26, 2011

I’m bad with celebrations.

No, seriously, I’m actually just extremely bad at them. Holidays and get-togethers, I can do, but I try to get out of celebrating my birthday every year, and god, things like blogging anniversaries? I don’t even know where to start.

(Mainly, I think I’ll just stand around and flail.)

Instead of telling you all how thankful I am that I’ve been able to stick around for four years and do something that I thoroughly enjoy, I’m just going to announce a giveaway.

And another giveaway.

And another giveaway.

And… another giveaway?

Yes, really. Because, well, what better way to celebrate your fourth blogiversary than to do four colour-coded giveaways? :D

The rules

Each giveaway will run for one week, and I’ll email the winner once the giveaway closes. We’ll be running them through Rafflecopter, and you’ll have 48 hours to get back to me before the prize gets passed along to the next person. The four giveaways will be open to everyone, regardless of age, habitation, or favourite brand. (However, if you’re under the age of majority in your country/state/province, you’ll need parental consent!)

Also, the giveaways will be run in terms of colour.

It’s going to be epic.

 

xoxo,

Rae

theNotice’s fourth-year celebrations | The Bronze Giveaway

I thought it might be nice to start off our month of giveaways with the summeriest one – after all, doing this one later in the year would probably just be cruel and unusual punishment.

This giveaway includes two Clarins products (their Instant Smooth mousse tanner and Mosaïque bronzer), one Lancaster sunscreen (SPF 30 Ultra Soothing Lotion, for face and body), and one lovely Ellis Faas pen (in E303, a silicone-y bronzer). They’re all products that I would have loved to feature, but either didn’t have time to cover, or couldn’t try (because of the silicones). I hope they find a good home with a lucky reader, instead!

I’m also quite excited to try out Rafflecopter, a new giveaway widget thingy. Let’s just hope it works :P


More photos »

Clinique Black Honey Colour Surge Eye Shadow Quad review, photos, swatches

Friday, September 23, 2011

Of all the products in Clinique’s The New Black collection, this is the one I was looking forward to the least. So, of course, (in true Rae fashion,) it’s the one I fell in love with.

And oh, what a complicated love it is.

The product: Clinique Black Honey Colour Surge Eye Shadow Quad

I know that we normally do section-breakdown reviews, but this one needs a little bit more of a ramble. I hope you’ll excuse the lack of structure!

First things first, I want to say that the Black Honey concept translates beautifully into an eyeshadow quad. Like the lipstick, this quad is best suited to light or medium complexions, really excels at flattering warm skintones, and offers a translucent wash of colour. However, I’m using terms like “best” and “excels” with a very specific intent: it really is phenomenal for them, but it can do so much more!

Personally, I find that the Black Honey Almost Lipstick doesn’t sit quite right with my complexion – I’m too pale and too cool-toned for it. This quad, however, is a different story entirely. The shades are warm, but they’re just the right kind of warm, and unlike the lipstick and blush, this quad isn’t at all difficult for me to pull off. If you ask me, this quad is the most universal product of the collection, and I think it’ll suit the broadest range of complexions.

This is my first Clinique quad (I know, that fact is blowing me away, too), and one thing in particular that stuck out to me is the fact that it’s clear-backed. Which, for the record, is brilliant. Clinique presses its eyeshadows into coordinating plastic pans, and it makes it incredibly easy to identify the quad in an instant.

Like the shadows, not all of the plastic pans have the same finish to them: only two of the four, really, are shimmery. I’ve mentioned before how much I love palettes with mixed finishes, and this is no exception! Often, I find that the more you mix your finishes, the more depth you get out of the palette (and the more versatility it tends to have).

This palette contains:

  • a super-sheer, shimmery ivory,
  • a metallic-finish (think MAC’s Frost eyeshadows) taupey brown,
  • a warm, satin-matte orangey-brown with fuchsia (yes, fuchsia!) sparkles interspersed, and
  • a rich chocolate brown with gold and pink shimmer.

Clinique Black Honey Colour Surge Eye Shadow Quad swatches

Clinique Black Honey Colour Surge Eye Shadow Quad swatches, at an angle

The verdict? (aka “the big however“)

Despite everything I love about this… I’m going to have to recommend that you pass on it.

Yes, I just said “pass on it.”

The thing is, this palette features three unexpectedly lovely eyeshadows, but it also has one that’s extremely disappointing. Not even just sub-par, but flat out extremely disappointing. I mean, I get why companies insist on putting highlighters in every single palette, but if it’s so sheer it won’t even show up on an NC15, why bother? Sometimes I’ll excuse the sheerness if the highlighter has a really gorgeous duochrome, or a sheen, or even just really pretty shimmer, but this is just – well, it’s just some barely-there sparkles.

So: if you love the look of the Black Honey palette, and you’re willing to accept the fact that the ivory’s more or less a nonentity, then go for it. The other three shades definitely do not disappoint! But, in terms of a cost-to-product ratio, just know that this one’s really only delivering on 75% of its promises.

P.S. The dark brown’s a little on the dry side, so be prepared to put a little extra elbow grease into using it. If you’re in a hurry, it still looks good used normally, but if you have the time – take an extra minute to “press and smudge” the colour on before blending. The results are very much worth the effort!

More photos and swatches »

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