May Favorites


This is going to be a long post. I have much to say 🙂

Jojoba Oil
I’ve been using this for the last two months as my morning and evening moisturizer. It’s not as heavy as the sweet almond oil or vitamin E oil that I’d been using previously, and absorbs relatively quickly into the skin. Unfortunately, that also means that the jojoba oil isn’t as moisturizing as those other oils, but during the summer months my skin condition always improves. Right now, I’d say I’m on the dry side of Normal and I don’t really need a heavy moisturizer. The jojoba oil is perfect for the spring/summer and I’ll probably switch to a heavier oil as the fall/winter approaches.

The specific type/brand of oil I’ve been using is The Jojoba Company’s 100% jojoba oil (250 mL), which costs approximately $12 at Whole Foods. After 2 months of consecutive use, I still have 75% left. I can see this lasting me another 6-8 months, so it’s actually really economical.

I use exactly 8 drops of the jojoba oil all over my face in the morning, and exactly 8 drops at night. I haven’t experienced any breakouts from using it and a bonus side effect is that I think my eyelashes have gotten much longer, and naturally glossier in appearance. w00t!

I would say that the jojoba oil does have a subtle, unique scent. There’s a very faint smokiness that kind of reminds me of deli ham. Lucky for me I like pork products so the smell doesn’t bother me. Hehehe. Don’t be scared though. It’s a really faint smell that I think most people wouldn’t notice. It’s just that I’m sensitive to scents.

L’Oreal EverStrong Overnight Repair Treatment
I’m not sure how much this retails for because I won this in a Allure giveaway. It was only a short while ago that I received it but I’ve already used it a handle of times and I think it’s quite a nice product.

The product looks and feels like a thin, liquid-y conditioner. What I like best about it is the scent. Now, I’ve never been wild about any of L’Oreal’s product scents (ColorJuice=NASTY) but the hair treatment smells really yummy. It smells like I’ve got a coconut-y tropical drink sitting on my head.

The directions say to use 1 or 2 pumps and run it through your hair, and then keep it in your hair overnight. My hair is really fine and past experience with other conditioners/treatments has taught me that less is always more, so I opted to use only 1 pump. It doesn’t make my hair look or feel greasy, not right after I apply it nor when I wake up the next morning. I can’t really say if this product makes my hair any softer or stronger because I have extremely soft hair already (or so different hairdressers have told me over the years), and I’m not entirely sure how I’d test the strength of my hair. It wasn’t brittle to begin with anyway. However, I do feel like my hair’s been more manageable lately. I usually get a lot of flyaways, but not so much ever since I started using the treatment.


L’Oreal Studio Secrets Magic Perfecting Base
I wholeheartedly recommend this product to anyone like me who has dry skin and large pores. This product really works!

The texture is unlike any other primer I’ve ever used before (e.g. Monistat Anti-Chafing Powder Gel, Smashbox PhotoFinish, Korres Silicone Free, e.l.f. Face Primer). I’ve seen people describe the texture as mousse-like but I have to disagree. The mousses I’m familiar with are chocolate mousse, hair mousse, and Maybelline Dream Mousse, and the Magic Perfecting Base is very different from all of those. It’s much drier than a dessert mousse; it doesn’t feel like a foamy hair product; and it doesn’t have that fluffy, whipped texture that I associate with Dream Mousse. To me, the L’Oreal primer feels more like a smooth, non-sticky, creamy paste.


All the primers I’ve used have done nothing to mask my dry skin or large pores…until now! They’ve all been too thin to do any good. In comparison, the much thicker L’Oreal primer fills in those crater pores and smooths over the dry patches of skin beautifully.

From trial and error, I discovered that rubbing the product on sheered it out too much, defeating the purpose of spackling over the pores. I’ve found that the best way (for me) to apply this product is to pat — not rub — the product on, which ensures that the primer fills in the pores. Less is more with this primer. I only touch the surface of the product lightly with one finger once, and that’s usually enough product for one cheek (where my large pores are located). I then spend a minute or so gently patting/stippling the product on with that same finger to make sure that the primer’s applied evenly. It doesn’t fill in my old “icepick” acne scars completely, but it does diminish their appearance considerably. As for my large pores and dry patches, totally gone! L-O-V-E! L’Oreal named their product well. It truly is magic, and my makeup looks so much better over this primer.

I can’t really say anything about how it makes makeup last longer or how well it controls oil because, as a dry skinned gal, those aren’t issues that concern me. I don’t normally have a problem with makeup fading or melting off.


N.Y.C. Color Wheel Mosaic Bronzing Powder in Heart of Gold
I picked this as one of my April monthly favorites and I’m still loving it! Although it’s supposed to be a bronzer, I tend to use it more as a blush.

Heart of Gold is a peachy bronze shade with just a hint of shimmer. I like to pair it with N.Y.C. Blushable Creme Stick in Pink Flash.

L.A. Colors Mineral Eye Shadow in Beige
This product has been performing double duty as an all-over brightening wash on the eyelids, as well as a cheekbone highlighter. The color is…well…a shimmery, creamy beige.

Nicka K High Definition Eye Shadow in #3013
I’ve already talked about the product here and here.

Physicians Formula Gel CreamLiner in Brown (from the Brown Eyes set)
I reviewed the product here. I still haven’t found my HG gel liner yet but this is the best one as of now. The PF gel liners come in sets of three (the Brown Eyes set contains one black, one purple, one brown liner) but I reach for the matte brown liner the most often because it defines my eye the most naturally without being as harsh or dramatic as the black which contains purple/blurple micro shimmer. The purple liner also contains a tiny bit of shimmer, less so than the black; I save it for the weekends (i.e. not for the office).


The brown eyeliner in the Brown Eyes set is actually a really close dupe for Bobbi Brown’s Long Wearing Gel Liner in Mahogany Ink. Both are non-shimmery dark brown liners without any hint of red. Both wear similarly. After giving each liner a few minutes to set, both swatches were impossible to smudge. Next, I ran both swatches on my arm under running water. Neither smudged. Finally, I rubbed both of the moistened swatches. In order not to smudge the swatches into each other, I smudged the Bobbi Brown liner towards the left, and the Physicians Formula liner towards the right. It took some vigorous rubbing to smudge both liners, and the Physicians Formula actually smudged a little less! So yay for cheaper alternatives. They may not be waterproof but Physicians Formula weren’t lying when they said their gel liners are water-resistant.


*In some photos, the Bobbi Brown eyeliner swatch appears to be slightly more pigmented than the Physicians Formula swatch but in real life it’s actually the other way around. I think the Physician Formula looks less pigmented in the pictures because the light that’s coming in from the right side is hitting it more directly.

N.Y.C. Blushable Creme Stick in Pink Flash
Pink Flash is an ultra bright coral pink that doesn’t contain any shimmer.

I embrace my natural paleness but during the summer months I want more of a sunkissed look. N.Y.C. Heart of Gold gives me that peachy bronze look for which I yearn, but I can’t pull off a straight bronze look easily so I use a bit of Pink Flash to brighten it up and make the look more wearable.


Nicka K Creme Lipstick in Coral Pink
This is a really lovely creme (non-shimmer) finish lipstick that I would say is a bit more salmon compared to N.Y.C. Pink Flash. The texture is creamy, pigmentation’s great, and the best part is that it costs less than a dollar. There is a slight watermelon scent but nothing overpowering or nausea inducing. I purchased mine from a beauty supply store.

wet N wild Mega Last Lip Color in Just Peachy
I reviewed the lipstick here.

Palladio Herbal Tinted Lip Balms in Berry and Orange
I reviewed the balms here.

Jordana Easyshine Glossy Lip Color in Sweet Strawberry
I reviewed the product here and here.


L.A. Colors Lip Gloss in Sugar Spice
You can find this product at the Dollar Tree. Sugar Spice is a shimmery pinky peach color. The texture is non-sticky, it comes with a doe-foot applicator, and smells kind of like Juicy Fruit gum.

wet N wild Diamond Brilliance Moisturizing Lip Sheen in Shannon’s Shiny Bit
This gloss is a creamy, non-shimmer salmon pink shade. There’s no scent and it comes with a doe-foot applicator. I think this particular shade was discontinued.

Max Factor Maxalicious Lip Gloss in Two to Tango
I think this may be the most pigmented gloss I own. It’s a gorgeous, bright orange with lots of orange gold shimmer. I bought this product on clearance since Max Factor’s pulling out of the USA. I’m so upset I didn’t discover Max Factor glosses sooner.


CoverGirl CG Smoothers concealer in Light
This has been my favorite concealer for the past 4 months or so. CoverGirl makes several different concealers for different skin types. The CG Smoothers concealer is the one they recommend for people with Dry skin on their website.

I use the CG Smoothers concealer occasionally to cover hyperpigmentation and old acne scars on my face but I use it mostly for my undereye area. The coverage is great and the texture’s very creamy for a stick concealer. On my skin, it isn’t cakey and it doesn’t settle into fine lines. I prefer to use my fingers to apply because the heat of my skin helps warm up the product and makes the blending process easier. The part I love most about this concealer though is its finish. It’s dewy. I know some people consider “dewy” to be anything that gives your skin a glow, including shimmery products. Not me. To me “dewy” products contain no shimmer; they give your skin a slightly moist appearance, like you’ve just moisturized your skin. As someone with dull, dry skin, I can’t do matte; it’s just overkill, so I like how the dewiness freshens up my undereye area and makes it look more hydrated and healthy. Due to the nature of my skin, I don’t need to set this concealer and, indeed, I prefer not to in order to preserve the dewy finish.

My only complaint is that I wish these concealers came in more shades. The CG Smoothers in Light is just the tiniest bit too pink for my yellow toned Asian skin. I know that CG makes a yellow shade in Neutralizer but that’s more of a corrector and it’s much lighter compared to Light. Someone fairer could probably get away with using Neutralizer as a concealer but not me (NC20).

e.l.f. Tinted Moisturizer SPF 15 in Light Beige
I think this is probably one of the most overlooked and underrated makeup products. You hardly hear anyone talking about it but it’s truly a hidden gem. The finish is dewy (no shimmer), coverage is light, and the product has a sweet orange scent which I personally like. And you get all that for a dollar. There’s no horrible sunscreen smell, and it doesn’t feel heavy or sticky.

Since the texture is a bit thick, I apply the tinted moisturizer the same way I apply my BB creams. That is, I pat/stipple the product on with my fingers. The warmth of my fingers helps smooth and spread the product out. For me, rubbing the product on actually takes a bit more work because it tends to look more streaky, and I need to spend more time to make sure it’s evenly blended.

I divide my face into 4 sections (forehead, nose & chin, left cheek, right cheek), and work on applying the tinted moisturizer to those areas one section at a time. I don’t need much product for my face; I only use a peppercorn-sized amount of tinted moisturizer for each section.

If you’re a light skinned Asian gal, like me (NC20), looking for an inexpensive tinted moisturizer with a yellow undertone that doesn’t feel too heavy, I suggest trying e.l.f.’s Tinted Moisturizer in the shade Light Beige. e.l.f. only used to carry 3 shades which were way too dark, and/or too orange or pink. Light Beige is one of their newer additions. I also own the tinted moisturizer in Rosy Beige, and the shade depth is actually really close to Light Beige but with a pink undertone. The tinted moisturizers blend really easily so I can get away with wearing Rosy Beige but Light Beige suits me better.

In my opinion the Tinted Moisturizer and the Super Glossy Lip Shines are e.l.f.’s two best products.

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6 thoughts on “May Favorites

  1. >I like the ELF tinted moisturizer too, I have finally gotten used to the orange scent and it does go away after application! Great post. I love how you link back to prior reviews – I may just start doing that myself. =)

  2. >Yay! More love for the elf tm.Haha, thanks 🙂 The linking is actually because I'm too lazy and scatterbrained to type up another full review but I'm glad you like it. It's easier for me to direct people to earlier posts.

  3. >I love your review! 🙂 Jojoba oil is really good. Currently, I use vitamin E oil currently and i love it as well. Never used the ELF tinted moisturizer before but it sounds really interesting. I just made an order recently but didn't see that item. I must check it out. Thanks! 🙂 Looking forward to more of your reviews!

  4. Pingback: June Favorites « Mimsy's Blog

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