Rock & Republic

The Rock & Republic line of makeup is known for its lavish packaging, tremendous color selection of blushes and eyeshadows, and great color payoff. Too bad it's discontinued!!! :(
Thanks to YouTube gurus like Hollyannaeree and Jenn from frmheadtotoe who raved about this brand, people jumped onto the bandwagon and began buying out products whenever it was held on Hautelook. I'm bummed because this all happened before I began actually collecting makeup and missed out on so many opportunities to get their blushes and brushes. Now they're all sold out! :((

I decided it was time to invest in whatever I could before the entire line disappears. So here is what I got my hands on at $7 a pop from Hautelook.

 Each eyeshadow comes in it's own little case. I likey!

Here are 3 of the shadows I received. From left to right are Revenge, Alloy, and Wicked. Revenge is is shimmery cranberry purple, Alloy is a shimmery golden peach, and Wicked is a matte maroon purple.

Swatches of Alloy, Wicked, and Revenge from left to right and bottom to top. 

Surprisingly, the colors swatched differently than expected. Revenge has a deep purple tone and the cranberry speckles seem to disappear. The shadow is creamy to the touch, just like Alloy. Alloy was pretty much what I expected and swatches true to color. Wicked turned out to be much chalkier than I had hoped for and has more of a maroon-cranberry color than purple, which I actually like. 

I'm still waiting for the color Tribal to arrive. I'm sad that I missed the chance to own colors like Carat, Veil, Sabotage, and Exile. I've probably done a horrible job at portraying the wonders of this line, so if you're bored please check out this girl's swatches at Part 1 and Part 2

And while I'm still talking about this line, I figured I should show the blush I own in Immoral.
Please excuse my extremely lazy impromptu "shoot" on my bed with my iPhone... haha

First of all, do you see how big the blush is compared to the shadows??

The color in the pan is really scary, but when applied with a light hand, the blush brings a bright flushed tone to the skin that isn't too bad. Plus it's matte so it looks pretty natural. 

To sum it up, it's a pretty great brand and even greater with it's huge discounted price tag. I love its heavy and durable packaging with mirrors placed in each compact. It seems over the top, but that's what makes it feel expensive. My only gripe about the packaging is that there are no magnetic or clip closures. It's made well enough that it shouldn't open on its own, but I wouldn't trust it to be sitting in my purse, that's for sure. So that is my measly Rock & Republic collection. I'm so sad I missed out on the other blushes, shadows, and brushes! I wonder if they'd ever come back out with this makeup collection since it's been doing so well?

Overview: Exfoliators

I'm not that much of an exfoliator buff (har har), but here are the ones I'm going through.

1) St. Ives - Green Tea Scrub
This is the newest addition to the club. I think it's one of my favorite exfoliators to date! It has such a clean, fresh, and yummy scent. What I enjoy most about this scrub is that it has tiny beads that are gentle, yet it's dense enough to feel like you're really scrubbing your face. This scrub has a good ratio of beads to the paste... if that's even what it's called. Basically, it's an awesome scrub if you're willing to spend $4 and I totally recommend it! If you're feeling iffy, at least smell it!!! Smells so good....
2) St. Ives - Apricot Scrub for Blemish & Blackhead Control
Who hasn't used this exfoliator? It's been around for ages and was the option to turn with all it's awards. I don't think I've been without this exfoliator since high school... but I'm so over it! This is the epitome of a "scratchy" exfoliator. I was excited to try their new formulations with their new packaging, but it's pretty much the same thing. I'm not into rough exfoliators, especially since my skin has become more sensitive. I don't enjoy the feeling of my skin burning... It's taken me forever to get through it because I leave it in the shower, but it will be replaced by my new favorite, the St. Ives Green Tea Scrub. And I haven't seen any blemish or blackhead control.
3) DermaNew - Microdermabrasion
This came with a handheld scrubber that I'll speak about below. I haven't used this scrub without it, so I don't have much to say. It's white with tiny microbeads. (ps, thanks sis for the gift!)
4) Ambi - Even & Clear Exfoliating Wash
I used this cream when I was going through the worst year-long breakout of my life. I think I was going through hormonal changes after graduating college and my skin was wigging out on me. I even tried ProActiv! (it didn't help) Anyways, this cleanser caught my eye one day and I wanted to see if it would help with evening my skin tone after all the scarring left on my forehead. I absolutely love the scent of this pearly cream, but I love it even more now because I associate it with the time my skin began to clear up. Now I don't fully credit this product to the clearing of my skin, but it was a nice alternative to the St. Ives Apricot scrub because this is more like a cleanser and exfoliator put into one. It's extremely gentle on the skin with tiny microbeads that aren't densely packed into the formula. It's definitely something that could be used daily unlike the other exfoliators I've discussed. The only reason why I own it right now is because I haven't seen this line carried in Target for years and I ran across it this summer and thought it was time for a little reunion.
5) Clarins - One-Step Gentle Exfoliating Cleanser
This cleanser came with the Clarins package I ordered from Hautelook this summer. The cleanser has a gel consistency with round beads sparsely dispersed through the formula. Now I know I'm not one for harsh exfoliators, but this is too far on the opposite side of the spectrum. I would think this would be ideal for mature or extremely sensitive skin. I could imagine my mom or grandma liking this exfoliator... which is why I should have steered clear from Clarins in the first place. I am not digging this barely-grazing-the-face-exfoliator action... nor it's orange scent.

This is the DermaNew set my sister got me. This "Facial Rejuvenation System" includes the dual-sided resurfacing tool, the microdermabrasion cream, a body foam applicator, a facial foam applicator, and a facial cleansing brush. The tool can either be used as long as you'd like or with it's 2 minute timer. I usually use the 2 minute timer, apply my Body Shop Seaweed gel cleanser onto the cleansing brush side, and clean my face whenever  I want a decent scrub. I will also use the foam applicator with the microdermabrasion cream time to time. There are tons of different tools on the market, both high and low end. I think it's worth the investment because it just revives the face better than what your hands can do!

I think the only scrub I'll repurchase is the Green Tea from St. Ives. I haven't been on the lookout for new exfoliators because I've had my eye on the Clarisonic Mia... the ultimate exfoliator. I hope to be a proud owner one day!! :P


Overview: Face Cleansers

Here's the beginning of my "Overview" series dedicated to products I'm currently using/trying to finish up. That way I can talk about all the things I've been rotating around for the past several months. (These pictures were taken back in August!)

Today's post will be featuring facial cleaners. Sigh... facial cleansers... my first love since junior high. I have probably used almost every drugstore brand and age appropriate line for my skin from Clearasil, Clean & Clear, Basis, Noxema, Olay, Loreal, Cetaphil, Biore, Purpose, Aveeno, and Ambi. My favorite brand would have to be Neutrogena out of all the drugstore choices. I've also dabbled with some high end cleansers, but there isn't one that stands out more than my trusty drugstore brands. There are a few tried and true cleansers I don't mind going back to, but I think I have ADHD and find myself always looking for something new!!

 Here are the 5 facial cleansers I'm desperately trying to go through!

1) Chanel - Mousse Douceur 
This is one of my 3 white creamy cleaners that foams and washes off beautifully. I think it's comparable to cream cleansers of Clinique or Shiseido that give you that squeaky clean face. It smells so good too! I'm sad I'm coming to the end of this tube, but I don't see myself spending the dough to keep this in my collection.
2) L'oreal - Go 360 Clean Deep Cream Cleanser (all used up now)
This is my second bottle of this face wash. It does a pretty good job of cleansing the face, and I especially enjoy the pink scrubber it comes with. It took some getting used to, but I use this scrubber with other cleansers now. The cream doesn't strip the face of all its oils, which I think helps me not to produce extra oil throughout the day. It has become a staple shower cleanser, but I'm bored of it. I think I'm going to try one of their gel cleansers in this line or I'll switch over to Clean & Clear's Morning Burst or Neutrogena Grapefruit cleansers for my shower routine. I do recommend this line though!
3) Dr. Brandt - Poreless Cleanser 
Love/hate relationship with this guy. It's taken me FOREVER to ge through this... like over a year and a half... is that even sanitary? haha Anyway, this face wash gave me instant results when I noticed my blackheads were totally clearing out. However, after a month of using it my skin became immune. And on top of that, this cleanser reeks of medicinal scents and burns the crap out of my eyes. This is one wash you definitely need to make sure is completely gone before you open your eyes or you'll regret the day you were born. I don't even know where this could be purchased because I don't see this line at Sephora anymore.
4) The Body Shop - Seaweed Deep Cleansing Facial Wash
I was introduced to this line through Lil Lady's Life blog and her review found here. I stumbled upon her post in the middle of summer when my face was extremely oily and I was looking for a new cleanser, and thought "Why not?" I bought this along with the moisturizer (which I'll speak about in my upcoming post) and thought it was okay. The toner is probably the best item of this line. Anyway, the cleanser is decent, but is pricey!! I do like the seaweed scent and it helps clean the majority of my makeup way, but I will definitely not repurchase. I'm enjoying it while I use it up as my main cleanser, but I will be on the lookout for something new. 
5) Sibu - Sea Buckthorn Facial Soap Bar (half of the bar cut off and wrapped) 
I was introduced to this soap from another online guru, Ginabinawina99 of Youtube, with her review found here. She was such a believer of this line, so I actually purchased this soap bar and one of Sibu's moisturizers for my boyfriend. He used body soap bars for his face his entire life and I was trying to introduce soaps meant for the face!! My first attempt was with Anthony Logistics for Men Glycerin bar, but that still gave him breakouts. I thought Sibu's bar was worth a try since Gina's husband enjoyed the line AND it was super cheap (like $3!!) on Amazon. Turns out not only did my bf stop having breakouts completely, it totally took off all my makeup too! After that, we have collectively gone through about 5 bars and fully intend to keep repurchasing. This soap bar does a good job of cleansing impurities and excess oil. I especially like to use this after rubbing an oily makeup remover all over my face to make sure everything is fully washed off. Great cleanser for men or women!

I'm happy to report that I'm coming near the end of most of these cleansers... which means time to go shopping! 
What cleansers have been tried and true for you? What do you recommend???