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Friday, May 8, 2015

[ETSY][REVIEW] Rock Hound Soap - Amethyst Quartz Crystal Soap

I ordered and received the Amethyst Quartz Crystal Soap from Rock Hound Soap a few days ago. It is very realistically made and came (pun intended) rock solid. My dad thought I had actually bought a crystal home rather than soap! Hahaha.

The soap came in a package and a plastic wrap:
Rock Hound Soap! Looks just like a crystal in the bag.
Out of package. I don't know why I took a picture of it vertically. Oops.
Picture of it on the side with a chunk removed. It breaks off as a crystal too!

I ordered it as unscented, so it is just regular glycerin soap in a crystal form. It's good for sensitive skin.

I placed my order on 4/25/15, and it was delivered on 5/6/2016. It was shipped out the first week of May, which is within their expected turn around time in the shop's policy.

I think it is a great gift that is under $15. 

Disclaimer: All pictures were taken and edited by me. Any color differences are due to camera and monitor differences. All items were purchased by me with my own money unless otherwise stated. I was not endorsed for this review of another Etsy seller. 

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

[ETSY] Gold Starpearl Earrings

After a long hiatus, I am back with my first ever pair of earrings!

I think these are absolutely gorgeous earrings. They are much shinier in real life and oh so dangly.
Check them out at my Etsy store!

I've decided to start blogging again. I will be back with comparisons between 3 sleeping masks and an update on co-washing.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Etsy Review: Herbolution Makeup Cleansing Oil!

I volunteered to be a tester for a fellow Etsy seller's product: Herbolution's makeup remover cleansing oil! I paid for shipping and it arrived within the week!

The oil is quite thick in consistency, so definitely use only a few drops and on a moistened cotton ball or cotton pad. It smells like watered down tea tree oil.

Such a cute little glass bottle and a 10% off coupon!
I normally do not use makeup, but I always use waterproof sunscreen. Right now I am trying a non-physical option: EltaMD spf 50 UV sport waterproof sunscreen. It is extremely hard to take off, so the first thing I did was test this cleansing oil on my face.

First I put two drops on a moistened cotton ball, then rub rub rub!

The before and after looks pretty drastic. It did not leave an oily feeling on my skin, but I put a warm moist towel on my skin anyways, as per instructions. I then washed my face with a facial cleanser and definitely felt my skin being smoother and cleaner on the side I used the oil!

Now to test it on some eyeliner over primer. Products used:

The before:

After equal amounts of time gently rubbing: 

Hmm it seems like Nature Republic is not coming off. Also, the eyeliner is being pushed around on my skin.
MAC and Maybelline came off very easily!
 Some more rubbing, a lot harder this time:
You can still see some eyeliner on the bottom from the Nature Republic!
Conclusion: The cleansing oil takes off gel and pencil liner quite easily, but the waterproof liquid eyeliner required rubbing that may be too hard on the eyelids. I later tested again and found that if I used more cleansing oil it would come right off, but that also left me with greasy eyelids. Fortunately the oil dried relatively quickly.

Recommended use: Spread oil evenly over the moistened cotton pad/ball and use it to break up makeup. Don't expect it to clean everything off! Definitely use another gentle cleanser afterwards to get everything off. 

Summary: Thicker than I am used to for a cleansing oil, but that is easily resolved by spreading evenly on a moistened cotton ball/pad. Would recommend for makeup that isn't very waterproof or for double cleansing. It is better than plain oil in that it isn't very greasy and has a nice tea tree oil scent.

Thanks for letting me review the product!

Disclaimer: This product was sent to me for review! I volunteered to review it and paid shipping. All photos were taken by me. Results may vary due to different skin types and makeup used! 

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Sunscreen Review: Thinkbaby, Episencial, Burnout Eco-Sensitive

Burnout Eco-Sensitive

My HG sunscreen, Burnout Eco-Sensitive got a reformulation and now I am afraid to use it. According to Amazon reviews, the new one has a terrible consistency and is now full of "bad" ingredients.

New ingredients (according to Amazon):

Active Ingredients: Zinc Oxide (non-nano) 18.9% Other Ingredints: Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Water (Aqua), Glycerin, Polysorbate 60, Stearic Acid, Cetyl Alcohol, Sorbitan Stearate, Cetearyl Glucoside, Stearyl Alcohol, Polyhydroxystearic Acid, Polyglyceryl-3 Ricinoleate, Isostearic Acid, Lecithin, Phenoxyethanol, Xanthan Gum, Carrageenan, Helionori, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Tocopherol, Ethylhexylglycerin.

Old ingredients (according to my bottle from last year):

Zinc Oxide (non-nano) 18.6% Other Ingredients: Deionized Water, Capric/Caprylic Triglycerides, Vegetable Glycerin, Sorbitol, Imperata Cylindrica (Root) Extract, Caprylyl Glycol, Lecithin, Arabidopsis Extract, Plankton Extract, Aloe Vera, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Citric Acid

It is upsetting that Burnout reformulated it, because this sunscreen has protected me even in 90 degree weather for over 6 hours with no reapplication. I got no burns at all, only a very slight tan.


My former favorite body sunscreen also got a reformulation and is now sticky and difficult to spread. It definitely leaves a white cast that you need to rub in. The only good part is that it still provides good protection (read: slight tan despite no reapplication for several hours). It also got smaller and more expensive!

Thinkbaby spf 50+

I bought this sunscreen to replace my HG sunscreen, but unfortunately it does not live up to the raving reviews on Amazon. Yes it is a nice scent and has a lotion like consistency. It is also dry to the touch once absorbed, but does get oily on my combination skin after around 3-4 hours. However, I was burned and heavily tanned in 80 degree weather for 5 hours. I also got spots on my skin from the sun damage. As with my usual use of sunscreen, I did not reapply, but it was ridiculous how tanned and burned I got. I use a lot of sunscreen on my nose, forehead, and cheeks, because that's usually where the sun hits. Surprisingly, that was also where I got burned! I was red and peeling for a week! I cannot believe that this sunscreen is the #3 bestseller and has such high reviews.
I was also slightly burned and tanned in 4 hours in the sun playing handball and again developed spots. I started peeling on my arms, which is also where I apply sunscreen heavily. I don't believe it is waterproof and sweatproof at all. I cannot believe that ThinkBaby has such poor performance.

In short: Thinkbaby has a wonderful lotion like consistency, and does become dry to touch. It should be applied to moisturized skin, or else it will be difficult to spread. However, you will get burned and tanned if you use this under the sun without reapplication. It is also not waterproof.

The search for a new sunscreen continues.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

New Ear Cuff

I have not released any new products in  my stores for a while, but I assure you one will come soon!

I am currently working on new ear cuffs that cover more of the ear. Here are two prototypes:

Left and Right ear wraps!
Don't they look so pretty? It's unfortunate that I still have to work on not scratching the metal and the exact measurements for each. But follow me on here, Tumblr, Pinterest, or check out either of my stores to be the first ones to know when I finally release these cuffs for sale! 

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Co wash for Asian hair

After months of trying out co-washing, I finally decided to write a post on how co-washing worked for my damaged Asian hair. I decided to try co-washing because daily shampooing seemed to be drying out my hair even more and caused many split ends.

First, what is co-washing? 
Co-washing is simply washing hair with handfuls of conditioner (no really, one handful for the scalp and one for the ends). The conditioner must not contain silicones, or else it will accumulate and weigh down your locks. The biggest difference between shampooing and co-washing is that you must use large amounts of conditioner and rinse for a very long time to ensure all the conditioner has come out. 

Trial and Error
I have always washed my hair daily and then applied conditioner to the ends, so not using shampoo was a significant change to my hair.

Take 1: V05 Strawberry and Champagne Conditoner
I started co-washing with V05 Strawberry and Champagne conditioner. The first two days my hair felt softer than ever before, but on the third day, my scalp was a bit smelly and my hair was rapidly losing volume. By the fourth day, my hair was matted, so I caved and washed with silicone-free shampoo. This made my hair smooth and full of volume! I stuck with this pattern of washing every 3rd day, but that only made my hair become greasy faster. 

Take 2: V05 Strawberry and Cream Conditoner
I swapped conditioners to V05 Strawberry and Cream, which is noticeably heavier and more moisturizing than V05 Strawberry and Champagne. It actually smelled like Strawberry and Cream! The downside is that it made my hair crunchy after a few days, even if it did smooth down the frizz better than V05 Strawberry and Champagne Conditioner. This is likely due to protein in this conditioner. You must maintain a balance of protein vs moisture in your hair, so definitely don't overdo it with this conditioner!

Take 3: V05 Chamomile Tea Conditioner
This conditioner was more moisturizing than the first conditioner I tried, but it is really hard to wash out, making my roots greasy after 2-3 days, so I still could not escape washing my hair with shampoo every few days. Hence, I had to cycle conditioners to delay build-up. 

Take 4: V05 Vanilla Mint Tea Conditioner
This is my holy grail conditioner for sure, because it cleansed my hair like shampoo and left behind a wonderful scent. It took out the buildup from my other conditioners and gave my roots volume back. At this point, I cycled V05 Chamomile Tea Conditioner with this conditioner and was truly co-washing for a few months! 
The downside is that eventually my hair became too dry from the cleansing effects of this conditioner. In fact, it began to build-up on my hair too! Hence, I was forced to shampoo it out. 

I had returned to the old habit of shampooing every few days, and this was gradually reverting my hair to its old icky state. I also began to lose more hair than usual!

Take 5; Suave Ocean Breeze
This one is quite similar to the Vanilla Mint Tea in that it helps remove build up from other conditioners. In some ways it is even better because I have yet to get build up from this conditioner! The only downside is that it left my ends very dry! 

Current Solution: Mix Co-washing w/ Shampooing and Water-only
To prevent the disgusting matted look, but also the frizzy dry look, I mix the two on a schedule. I wash with either of the Strawberry conditioners for 2-3 days. When my hair begins to lose volume, I wash with Vanilla Mint Tea or Suave Ocean Breeze for 2-3 days. Finally, I lather on the Strawberry and Cream conditioner or Chamomile Tea conditioner so that my locks feel slick. Then I wash it all off with silicone-free shampoo. The next day, my hair is bouncy and shiny. The day after I only wash with water to prolong that state. 

This new cycle has really worked for my hair, making it smoother than it used to be. I highly recommend you to try it too if your hair is damaged! 

On Scents
I think everything but VO5 Green tea conditioner smells wonderful. Suave Ocean Breeze is definitely a gender neutral scent because it smells a bit "salty" like the ocean. Vanilla Mint Tea and Chamomile Tea are definitely sweet smelling teas. Strawberry Champagne does not smell like strawberries at all, and leaves virtually no scent on the hair after washing it out. The strongest smelling one is Strawberries and Cream, which definitely smells like what it should.
For long lasting scent I would suggest Vanilla Mint Tea, Strawberry and Cream, and Ocean Breeze.

On Thickness

Green Tea, Vanilla Mint Tea, Strawberry & Cream, Ocean Breeze
Unfortunately, I ran out of the other conditioners, so I could not get a picture to compare. As you can see, Ocean Breeze is the thickest of them all, while Green Tea is more fluid. Strawberry Champagne and Chamomile Tea have a consistency similar to Green Tea. Due to their fluid nature, more conditioner must be used to really coat the hair to get it to work. 

I hope this long post filled with several months of experimentation helps you transition or make the choice to co-washing! It can be done, even with Asian hair!

Also, I have just opened a new Storenvy! Please check it out. Unlike my Etsy store, I offer flat rate shipping! See here.

Disclaimer: All products were bought by me and all photos are taken by me. Everyone's hair is different, so I cannot guarantee similar results for your hair!

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Nail Polish Review: Nicka K Charcoal Navy

Today I'm reviewing another Nicka K nail polish: Charcoal Navy. 

It is true to color and a smooth formula to work with. All swatches were done with only 2 coats of Charcoal Navy and 1 coat of fast dry topcoat. It does look streaky up close, but it is not a sticky nail polish to work with at all. I really love the microshimmer and how it looks closer to black at times. 

Very true to color!

For some added glitter, I put on some Wet and Wild Kaleidoscope. Unfortunately it is difficult to spread the glitter evenly, as seen.

I highly recommend this from Nicka K. So far it seems like they do dark colors better than the light ones! 

This review represents my honest opinion and was not endorsed by either company. All products were bought with my own money and all photos taken by me.