review

CoverGirl Foundation Color Issues | Product Review

by Jamie Sanford on January 29, 2019

Check out all of my Product Picks here. If you want to see all of the products I’ve reviewed (not just the ones I like), click here for Reviews.

I’m adding this to the product review category, but it could easily be in the Brand Experience category.

I’ve been a fan of the CoverGirl 3-in-1 Foundation for years. I have repeatedly tried more high-end foundations to see if there is a better option, but I haven’t found one yet that I enjoy as much as the CoverGirl 3-in-1.

I recently decided to try another drugstore foundation after RawBeautyKristi raved about the CoverGirl Vitalist Healthy Elixir foundation. She looks great, so obviously I need to try it out.

So I quickly head to Amazon, find that they have it in Ivory, and purchase it right away. A few days later, my new foundation arrived and I tried it during my next makeup application.

My first impressions were great. The application and coverage were nice, and I liked the outcome. I find myself not always wanting 100% coverage these days, and this let my skin show through a bit, which was well-received. I then wore it again mixed with the Fenty Pro Filt’r Foundation, as I still struggle with the Fenty foundation being a bit dry on my skin. Everything was fine, or so I thought.

Cut to a regular day at the office, but a day in which I’m wearing a v-neck top. It turns out that the major downside of using a lighted mirror to apply my makeup is that I don’t get a wider look at myself before I leave my house in the morning. It turns out that this Vitalist Healthy Elixir foundation, in the color Ivory, is not anything close to the Ivory shade I have been using for years, made by the same company! Having not done a side-by-side test, I had no idea.

These are both Ivory. How disappointing. I am surprised that a company as large as CoverGirl would not keep consistency in the colors of their skin products. Especially when you are naming them! These products do have numbers that aren’t the same, but the format of the numbers is very different, so I’m not sure that seeing the different numbers but the same shade name would have made me think twice.

Once I noticed the error, I went back online to look further into the issue, and found a LOT of product reviews mentioning the same issues that I had, that the Ivory shade was not light enough, and that there is not a lighter option in this particular product. So it’s not just an issue for me, but many customers who wanted it to work, and like me, seem to really enjoy the product itself.

Ultimately, I do think that companies that manufacture makeup should commit to matching shades to their names, across all products. I’ll take responsibility for not attempting to find out some more about this product before buying it, but it still seems ridiculous.

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This was going to be a product review, but my experience created questions that I think are better fitted to a brand experience post.

I am a big fan of Kat Von D Beauty products. I have a number of eyeshadow palettes and powder foundation, all that I greatly enjoy. During a random trip to TJ Maxx a few weeks back, I was super excited to see some Kat Von D Shade & Light blushes in the beauty section, and quickly scooped up a “Bonnie & Clyde” blush.

Here’s where things get unfortunate.

So much promise.

The focus here is questionable, but you can see the swatches of these 2 blushes on my arm. I expected a LOT more pigmentation than this.

Wow. This is how they looked after I blended over them with a brush. Where did they go? This is a major quality issue.

Beyond this, the product packaging was also a bit disappointing. I am going to directly compare the packaging of this blush with my Kat Von D Lock-It Powder Foundation.

It certainly looks like a lot more thought went into the packaging for the foundation. There is a lot more detail.

The sticker is actually pretty good on the blush, especially with 2 shades of product in the compact.

The packaging quality on the foundation looks much more expensive.

So, if I were reviewing this blush, it would be 0 stars. If I try to put it on my face and it just disappears, is isn’t actually blush. I went online after discovering the issue with this product, and found out that it had actually been pulled from both Sephora and the Kat Von D Beauty website.

Also found this on Reddit:

Here’s where I get to the heart of my issues with my experience.

Why did this product that had CLEARLY been identified as sub-par, get sold to a discount store? As a Kat Von D Beauty fan, I was excited to see what I figured was just excess stock being sold to TJ Maxx, and so I scooped it up. It didn’t occur to me that I should be looking online to find out that this is crap. I know what they say about assumptions, but I didn’t expect a Kat Von D Beauty product to be this terrible.

This makes me REALLY wonder who at Kat Von D Beauty decided to let this product into the wild in discount stores. Excess stock is one thing, but to release product of terrible quality to a discount store is a huge miss. Shoppers in a discount store might be really excited to see Kat Von D Beauty products at a discounted price. This could be a gateway product for someone who is interested in the brand but doesn’t think that they want to spend X dollars on a makeup product, and that opportunity to convince them that the cost is valid would be ruined by this product. The idea of samples from Ulta or Sephora, and perhaps even selling excess stock to discount stores, is to increase exposure of those products, to convince a shopper who isn’t sure about the brand or who isn’t sure about the price that the quality of the products is well worth the attached dollar amount. This blush is going to have the complete opposite effect.

I would love to hear comments from anyone on what you think about placement of problematic products into discount stores. Do you shop in a store like Marshall’s or TJ Maxx with a thought in your mind that you might be getting X product from a well-known brand because it might be of lesser quality?

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POPSUGAR Must Have Box | Product Pick #15

by Jamie Sanford on October 5, 2016

Check out all of my Product Picks here. If you want to see all of the products I’ve reviewed (not just the ones I like), click here for Reviews.

I was excited to have received an offer in August to try out the POPSUGAR Must Have Box in September. It was even more fun when I wasn’t thinking about it and then it appeared on my doorstep!

The Must Have box is a curated collection of items, delivered each month at a significant discount. The monthly cost is $39.95 per box, but the box will contain at least $100 in item value. You can save $5 on the October box with code OCT5.

Unfortunately, my box appeared to have been through it a bit.

The sticker wasn’t holding the tissue closed, and it was a bit wrinkled when it arrived. I love seeing the box printed on the inside with “happiness delivered.” Many of the box subscriptions are meant to be fun surprises each month, and I love the idea that they are a bit of happiness in a box. It’s a unique opportunity to surprise yourself.

The printed insert with item information was lovely.

Here’s a peek at the information on each item in the box.

(Items in the box – minus the hat, which you will see in a moment.)

I really love this nail care set. I really needed an updated option to push my cuticles back and this is great.

The Smith & Cult lip lacquer will not be for everyone, because it is sticky. However, for those of us who were obsessed with MAC’s lipglass 20ish years ago, this will be a welcome texture. The color is also great.

How have I never seen a retractable lint roller before? This is great for those of us who have ever carried around a small version, only to have it get covered in fuzz and whatnot in your bag. This came pre-loaded with 30 sheets of stickiness.

Here’s a dramatic photo of me living a Carmen Sandiego fantasy in this hat from Jack & Lucy. I LOVE hats in general, and this one is bringing the drama with a wide brim, and has a nice additional detail in the top as well. I have worn this 4+ times since I received it, and I will continue to do so. This is absolutely my favorite part of the box.

The Gluten Free Bites were delicious and were quickly eaten, so that was a win. I’m still trying out the Briogeo deep conditioning mask and I will post a review on that soon. I will say that receiving products of this size for a price of $39.95 is a great deal and an easy way to try out new products.

Here is the list of items in the box, with their regular prices.

  • A Jack & Lucy Bicoastal Wide Brim Hat ($58)
  • NCLA Mani-ER Tool Kit ($16)
  • Briogeo Don’t Despair Repair! Deep Conditioning Mask ($36)
  • F’Lint Lint Roller ($10)
  • Smith & Cult Lip Lacquer in The Warning ($22)
  • The Gluten Free Bites Dark Chocolate Coconut Bites ($5)

The total is $147! Much higher than even the guaranteed $100 value.

Although I loved this first one, I am still up in the air about subscribing every month to the POPSUGAR Must Have Box. They do have a Mini option that I may try in the meantime, although I know it will not be nearly as significant as the original box.

If you would like to purchase a Must Have Box, click here! Remember to use code OCT5 to receive $5 off on the October box.

I received this box free of charge from POPSUGAR for review. All opinions are my own.

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Tyme Iron Review | Product Pick #14

by Jamie Sanford on August 24, 2016

Check out all of my Product Picks here. If you want to see all of the products I’ve reviewed (not just the ones I like), click here for Reviews.

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission if you make a purchase using these links.

I can’t believe I haven’t written this one earlier, because I have been raving about the Tyme Iron to anyone who would listen for the past few months.

I have owned at least 10 curling irons since my teenage years, and it’s always been something I never got the hang of. I have thick hair, and to get it to hold a curl required a lot of product and a lot of commitment. I needed to curl tiny sections at a time an then spray them a lot to get them to last. I had also tried the “curling with a flat iron” method, but that didn’t work for me at all. It was just another situation of needing to take at least an hour to curl my whole head, and for that great effort, I would generally have curls that would be mostly gone by the end of the night. I’m not desperate enough for a perm—the spiral perm in 7th grade was enough to turn me off of that idea for life.

I started seeing sponsored posts for this hair tool on Facebook at least a year ago, and quickly clicked through to check it out.

It’s a bit strange for a hair iron, particularly when you are used to seeing more traditional flat or curling irons.

Here’s a look at it laying down. Still weird.

Anyway, it took me seeing the ads again and again, and watching videos multiple times, before I took the plunge. The price of this device is $190. I paid over $100 for my last CHI flat iron, so I was obviously not averse to buying expensive tools. This just seemed like a lot of money for a mysterious tool. However, there was a return policy, so I decided that if I received it and would be able to do my own hair for an upcoming wedding, instead of paying someone else, that I would be able to justify the price. If I couldn’t figure it out, I would just send it back.

I clicked the purchase button and patiently waited.

Soon enough, my Tyme Iron arrived! I sat at home that night, and watched instructional videos while trying it out. Having used traditional flat and curling irons for years, this is a totally different process.

This video is good, but I was doing something wrong, because my piece of hair was coming out a frizzy mess.

I looked around for another video.

This is a funny video of the Tyme founder having a Skype call with someone who was having trouble figuring it out. I found this one to be the most educational, and I immediately started getting amazing curls in my hair. Better yet, they lasted until I washed my hair again, without requiring any hair spray. (The only thing I have been using is a heat spray before I get started.)

While I was most excited for the curls, the Tyme Iron is also the best flat iron I have ever used. I still have the CHI, but it is stored away. I don’t know if I will ever go back to it again, because the Tyme Iron straightens my hair on the first pass, and it looks much healthier than when I was using the CHI.

Proof!

This particular day, I used the iron quickly to turn the ends of my hair up after straightening it. Not “curls” exactly, but a quick and easy way to add a bit of messy texture.

Straightened, but you can see a little bit of curve in my bangs there.

It’s a bit dark, but you can see it from the side. I largely curled here from the middle of my hair to the bottom. Next to me is my lovely sister Robyn, who I totally sold on the Tyme Iron during this weekend.

This was the event I mentioned earlier, the wedding of my brother-in-law. I did my own hair for the wedding, and this was how great my hair still looked, even after riding a ferry over Lake Ontario to get to an island! Full disclosure though, I did spray these for insurance. I can promise that my previous efforts at curling, even with spray, would not have survived a windy ferry ride. These held up perfectly all night.

The Tyme Iron does have a learning curve, and I have tried to be honest and forthcoming about that with everyone I have told about it. Once I got the technique down though, I had it, and I have only been getting better at curling ever since. I can now do a quick curl in less than 10 minutes. This is largely due to the fact that I can curl much bigger pieces than I ever was able to in the past.

Click here and buy the Tyme Iron right now.

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