Monday, January 31, 2011

Review: Lush Flying Fox Shower Gel

I bought this bottle of Lush's Flying Fox Shower Gel a while ago.  This product is called "Chocho Fujin (Madame Butterfly)" in Japan.  Yes, yet another Lush product which is named something totally different in Japan...

(picture from Lushusa.com)

What it does:
Share a shower with our Flying Fox to ground and calm you. Our Foxy shower gel has the stunningly sensual scent of jasmine, ylang, cypress and palmarosa. It's is so relaxing that even the most frantic, frazzled person will relax into a restful mood after a warm shower.
(from Lushusa.com)


Price:
4.15 GBP/100g (UK), $9.95/3.3 oz (US), 900 JPY/100g (Japan), which equals to 6.5 cents/g (UK), 10.6 cents/g (US), 10.7 cents/g (Japan).  Even with the current strong Japanese Yen, the price in Japan and the US is almost the same.

Scent:
This product smells VERY strongly of jasmine. I used a washcloth to apply this, rinsed out the washcloth and hung it up to dry.  The washcloth still smelled strongly the next day.

Pros:
- lathers very well
- not drying, although I needed to use a moisturizer later.  This product contains honey, a moisturizing ingredient.
- if you like jasmine scents, this is definitely for you!


Cons:
- the scent may be overwhelming.  I felt that the scent of this shower gel lingered longer than other Lush products I've used.
- this product is runnier than shower gels that I'm used to, so be careful of squeezing out too much!

Would I repurchase? maybe.  I liked this product even though the scent was incredibly strong.  If I ever try all of Lush's shower gels, it will be on my list of products I'll think about purchasing again.

Hope this review helped!

xoxo, K

Friday, January 28, 2011

Review: Lush Turkish Delight Body Polish

This is a review of the Lush Turkish Delight Body Polish.  This was part of my haul in London.
This product is called バラの宮殿 (Bara no Kyuuden, "Palace of Roses") in Japan.


What it does:
Butter yourself up with our delightfully rosy body polish. Each pot is made with our new soap-base, packed with aphrodisiac jasmine and Turkish rose, smoothing almond oil, moisturizing cocoa butter and neroli, the euphoric essential oil. (from Lush.co.uk)

How to use:
Rub it into your skin in the shower after washing your body, and rinse

Price: 15 GBP/200g (UK), $29.95/7 oz (US), 2980 JPY/200g (Japan)
This translates to $0.12/g (UK), $0.15/g (US), $0.18/g (Japan).  I felt that this product was very expensive versus anything else that Lush has.  I can't remember any products at Lush which cost over $30.

Pros:
- smells like real roses.  This product contains Rose Absolute, an essential oil.  Lush says it takes 1000 rose petals to obtain one drop of Rose Absolute.
- made my skin feel smooth

Cons:
- expensive.  Lush only sells this in the 7oz size pot.  I wish they would sell this in smaller containers!
- Not very moisturizing
- the texture was a little bit hard, similar to cold butter.  I had to work it between my hands to be able to rub it on my body, but it is too soft to be rubbed on your body in a bar form.

Would I repurchase? no

I was really confused on what this product was supposed to do.  It is slightly like a soap, and it needs to be rinsed off.  It is supposed to moisturize my skin, but I still needed to use a moisturizer and I did not feel that my skin was moisturized after rinsing it off.  My skin felt slightly smoother, but I can get a better effect from a exfoliator and a separate moisturizer.

Hope you enjoyed this review!

xoxo, K

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Review: Lush Buche de Noel cleanser (and a comparison with Angels on Bare Skin)

To round out my 2 weeks of Lush (@lushltd) Holiday reviews, here is a review for the Lush Buche de Noel cleanser.  This was a gift from Catherine. This is a limited edition product for the holidays and may no longer be available in your area. This is a repromoted product from last year, when it was called Santa's Rice Porridge.

Update: this product is being repromoted for the 2011 & 2012 holiday season!

This is called "クリスマスの食卓" (Kurisumasu no Shokutaku, Christmas Dinner) in Japan.  Yet another Lush product which is called something totally different in Japan.

Side note: I have fun finding out how differently Lush Japan has named their products, even though it means I sometimes need to go through the ingredients list to find the Japanese equivalent.

What it does:
Buche de Noel was around last Christmas, but it went by the name of Santa's Rice Porridge. It's back this year with a few tweaks; it's still fresh and preservative-free, but it's a fresh cleanser now. We think of Buche de Noel as nutritious pudding with a twist!
There are fresh satsumas and a splash of brandy to tone and stimulate, kaolin to cleanse your pores and exfoliating almonds to scrub away dead skin. It even comes wrapped in seaweed with a decoration to give it the Christmas touch.

(from lush.com)

Price: 5.50 GBP/100g in the UK, 9.95 USD/3.5 oz in the US, 780 JPY/100g in Japan.

Update: the updated prices for the 2011 holiday season are $12.95 USD/3.5 oz in the US, 5.95 GBP/100g in the UK, and 780JPY/80g in Japan. Note that the price has not increased in Japan, but the size of the product has gotten smaller.

Scent: smells a bit berry-ish.  A faint scent, much weaker than most of Lush's other products.

Pros:
- Not harsh, and cleans well
- I personally enjoy the smell during the winter
- VERY similar to Angels on Bare Skin, see below

Cons:
- None, really, except that it's limited edition.

Would I repurchase? yes, but... it's VERY similar to Angels on Bare Skin!

Comparison with Angels on Bare Skin:
- the texture and what it does is VERY similar
- some people have mentioned that this is a bit heavier and more moisturizing than AoBS, making it more suitable for the winter time
- Buche de Noel contains dried cranberries and cocoa butter
- AoBS contains lavender flowers and lavender oil
- both products contain glycerin and ground almonds

Here is a picture to show the texture of the two products.
AoBS is on the left, BdN is on the right.


Hope you enjoyed this review!

xoxo, K

PS: I just made a Facebook Fan Page for Cosmeddicted.  Please take a look! 

Lush's holiday items are no longer available on their website.  I have continued to review the items because they may be repromoted in the future. 

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Review: Lush Snow Globe Soap

This is a review for the Lush (@lushltd) Snow Globe Soap.  This is a limited edition product for the holidays and may no longer be available near you.  This product is called "スノードーム" (Snow Dome)  in Japan.

Update: this product is being rereleased for the 2011 & 2012 holiday season!

This is half of the piece of soap I bought.


(from lush.com)

What it does:
When Mark and Mo went to look for Christmas inspiration, they chanced upon a giant snowglobe in the middle of Hyde Park that you could climb inside and be part of a festive scene! Mo was instantly convinced she needed to make an equally spectacular frosty globe of soap, with a refreshing lemon myrtle and grapefruit scent to lift your spirits on a cold dark day. The whole cake looks a beautifully serene snow globe with dots of white ‘snow' throughout. It's a loving nod to a more traditional Christmas this year.
Avobath? Avowash.

Although this is a refreshing citrus soap, it has a different blend of sharper citrus oils to give you an invigorating wash morning or night. We've used organic lemon myrtle for a fresh, slightly herbal citrus note, and lemongrass to complement the fragrance. This soap goes perfectly in a bath cocktail with Uluru, Avobath or You've Been Mangoed to shake the cobwebs off your tired brain.

(from lush.co.uk)

Price:
$5.95/3.3 oz in the US, 1.95GBP/100g in the UK, and 650JPY/100g in Japan

Update: the updated prices for the 2011 holiday season are $7.95/3.3 oz in the US, 2.50 GBP/100g in the UK. The price is still 650JPY/100g in Japan, but remember that the JPY is much stronger now.

Scent: VERY citrus-y.  The lemongrass scents seemed the strongest.  This herbal scent helps the soap from smelling like kitchen cleanser.

Pros:
- I really liked this scent. It would be great for a morning shower, and I also enjoyed it in the evening.
- Like all the Lush soaps I have tried so far, it has a good lather and does not dry out my skin.

Cons:
- unfortunately, I do not know what the white part is like since my piece didn't include any white bits
- I'm not clear on why Lush considers this to be a winter scent.  It really reminds me of summer!

Would I repurchase?: Yes!  I liked the scent a lot.  I wish Lush would also release this in the summer!

Hope that helped!

xoxo, K

I have reviewed this item, even though it is no longer available on Lush's website, because they may be repromoted in the future. 

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Review: Lush Angel's Delight Soap

Here is my review of Lush Angel's Delight Soap.  This product was part of Lush's limited edition holiday review and may not be available any longer.  This is a repromoted product from last winter.

Update: this product is being rereleased for the 2011 & 2012 holiday season!

This product is called "天上のオーケストラ" (Tenjo no Okesutora, "Heaven's Orchestra"), in Japan.

This is the whole block of soap.  The SA cuts off a piece for you.  My piece was pink and yellow.

This is half of the piece I bought.

What it does:
Angel's Delight is one of our LUSH Christmas classics and a best seller every year. It really is hard to say what we love most about our heavenly holiday creation. There's the refreshingly fruity scent, bursting with tangerines and blackcurrants. And the beautiful iridescent glitter mixed throughout a sea of bright purples, oranges, blues and pinks. What about the adorable star and moon shapes throughout each slice? Oh, we give up! We love it all, and we have a sneaking suspicion you will too.
(from lush.co.uk)

Price:
$5.95/3.3 oz in the US, 2.35GBP/100g in the UK, and 650JPY/100g in Japan

Update: the updated prices for the 2011 holiday season are 2.50 GBP/100g in the UK and $5.95/3.3 oz in the US

Scent: smells like jelly beans and orange juice. This product smells stronger in the bar then when you use it on yourself.

Pros:
- very generic Lush soap.
- good lather

Cons:
- again, it's a generic Lush soap.
- I did not find it particularly moisturizing or anything special.

Would I repurchase?: no.  It's not a bad soap, I just don't think it's very interesting!

Note: As with all Lush soaps, these melt fairly quickly.  I suggest that you cut off a piece to keep in your bathroom, and store the rest in a cool, dry place.  My piece melted slightly on the trip back from Hawaii.  Also, the translucent parts (in this case, the pink part) will melt more quickly than the opaque parts, due to the difference in moisture content.

Hope that helped!

xoxo, K

I have reviewed this item, even though it is no longer available on Lush's website, because they may be repromoted in the future. 

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Review: Lush Snowcake soap

This is a review for the Lush (@Lushltd) Snowcake Soap.  This was a gift from Mona. This is a limited edition product and may no longer be available in your area.  Snowcake is typically repromoted every winter.

Update: this product is being rereleased for the 2011 & 2012 holiday season!
This product is called "Snowcake" in Japan.  Oh wow, this is the first time a product has the same name in Japan as in the UK! (click the links to my reviews on products which are named TOTALLY differently in Japan)


What it does:
For the softest, creamiest, most luxurious suds imaginable, grab a great big slice of Snowcake and float away on a cloud of almond marzipan and rose absolute. Snowcake smells exactly like our Smitten hand cream, and is an all time holiday favourite among staff and customers alike. It softens and cleans your body and scents it with a long-lasting almond fragrance.
(from lush.com)

Price: 2.60 GBP/100g in the UK, 6.95 USD/3.5 oz in the US, 650 JPY/100g in Japan.

Update: the updated prices for the 2011 holiday season are 2.95 GBP/100g in the UK and $7.95/3.3 oz in the US

Scent: it really does smell like almond marzipan and rose absolute, as Lush says.   I haven't tried Smitten hand cream, so I cannot do a comparison to that.

Pros:
- Good lather
- Not harsh, and cleans well
- I personally enjoy the smell during the winter

Cons:
- I'm not quite sure why people love this product so much that they hoard it.  I personally like the Honey I Washed the Kids soap better, which is a permanent product.

Would I repurchase? maybe.  I liked it enough that I would probably pick up a bar next holiday season, but I wouldn't buy it repeatedly if it were a permanent product.

I have reviewed this item, even though it is no longer available on Lush's website, because they may be repromoted in the future. 


 xoxo, K

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Review: Lush Snow Fairy Shower Gel

This is a review for the Lush Snow Fairy Shower Gel, a limited edition product for the holidays.

Update: this product is being rereleased for the 2011 & 2012 holiday season!

This product is called "Fairy Candy" in Japan.  Finally, a Japanese Lush product name that at least is similar!!


What it does:
Washing your body with the pink, ethereal fairy will make you smell like freshly spun cotton candy at a fairground, and your entire body will glitter with the magic of the fae all through the day. Don't stop there though- Snow Fairy works wonders as a shampoo or laundry detergent for sweetly scented sheets. Go ahead, spread the sparkly magic! You know you want to.
(from lush.com)

Price: 3.25 GBP/100g in the UK, 8.95 USD/3.3 oz in the US, and 900 JPY/100g in Japan.
By weight, this means $0.051/g in the UK, $0.09/g in the US, $0.11/g in Japan.  The difference between the Japan and US prices comes mostly from the current strong Japanese Yen.

Update: the updated prices for the 2011 holiday season are $9.95/3.3 oz in the US, 3.25 GBP/100g in the UK. The price in Japan is still 900JPY/100g, but remember that the JPY is much stronger now.

Scent: Lush describes this as a bubblegum and cotton candy scent.  I thought it smelled similar to cherry cough syrup.  I did not dislike the scent, but as with all Lush products, I highly recommend you go to the store to smell it first.  This product lacks the herbal scent often found in Lush products.

Pros:
- Good lather
- Not harsh, and cleans well
- This shower gel is a pretty dark pink color, but does not stain your washcloth/shower poof.

Cons:
-This product contains iridescent glitter which can be seen on the bottle.  I have not had any obvious bits of glitter pour out onto my shower poof when I use it.  If you were looking for a shower gel that will leave glitter on your skin, you may be disappointed.  On the other hand, you may find glitter on your body after using this.
- However, towards the end of the bottle, I found a LOT of glitter on my shower poof and on my skin.
- Lush suggests that you can use this as a shampoo or laundry detergent.  I would be very careful if you decide to do that.

Would I repurchase? maybe.  I liked it enough that I would probably pick up a bottle next holiday season, but I wouldn't buy it repeatedly if it were a permanent product.

I hope you enjoyed my review!

xoxo, K

I have reviewed this item, even though it is no longer available on Lush's website, because it may be repromoted in the future. 

Monday, January 10, 2011

Review: Lush Glögg Shower Gel

This is a review for the Lush (@lushltd) Glögg Shower Gel.  This is part of their holiday line and will only be available for a limited time.  This review was requested by none other than G of Nouveau Cheap 
Update: This product is being rereleased in 2011& 2012!


What it does:
Glögg is a LUSH interpretation of a Swedish spin on festive mulled wine. While it may be tempting to take a swig of our festive shower gel, we recommend you save the warming effects of the organic red wine, brandy and spice oils for the benefit of your body. Winter can put a chill into your bones and leave you with toe-sicles; heat things up, get the circulation going and get into a lather with this instead. Glögg and Cinders are the duo for you if you find the cold of winter difficult to deal with and want to stoke the embers. 
(from lush.co.uk)

Price:
$8.95/3.3 oz in the US, 3.90GBP/100g in the UK, and 900JPY/100g in Japan
By volume, this equals $0.09/g in the US, $0.06/g in the UK, and $0.11/g in Japan

Update: The new prices for the 2011 holiday season are $9.95/3.3 oz in the US and 3.90 GBP/100g in the UK

Update for 2012: The new prices are $9.95/3.3 oz in the US and 4.50GBP/100g in the UK

Scent:
This product smells strongly of cinnamon and cloves.  Although this supposedly contains wine and brandy, I did not detect those scents.


Pros:
- this scent is very unique
- lathers well enough
- this shower gel was not tingly.  I was afraid it would be tingly from the cinnamon, especially considering the claim says that it gets your "circulation going".

Cons:
- a little more runny than I expect in a shower gel


Would I repurchase?: Yes, when I can find it during the holidays.  I think this is a great limited edition product.   I would not stock up on it, but it's a great reminder of the holidays.

Hope that helped!

xoxo, K

I have reviewed this item, even though it is no longer available on Lush's website, because they may be repromoted in the future. 

Friday, January 7, 2011

Hong Kong food

I absolutely LOVE Cantonese food, so I had a great time eating in Hong Kong.  The best part is that most of the food I want to eat is SUPER cheap!

Wonton Noodles
The first thing I ate in Hong Kong. LOVE THEM.  They were about 25 HKD (about $3.25)

Curry Fish Balls
A very common street food.  These had daikon and a lot of other ingredients.


Ci Faan
Sticky rice wrapped around fried dough, meat floss, and zhacai
This is the first time I had this.  I LOVED it!

Congee
This bowl was HUGE.  It was the same size as my wonton noodles!
I'm more used to having a smaller serving of congee!

Rice Noodle Rolls
I love these!

Random dumplings that I had for breakfast
These were surprisingly tasty!

Shrimp with bean curd skin

I also bought a few things while in Hong Kong.  In case you've never been to Hong Kong, there are drugstores on every single street block!

32 pack of My Beauty Diary masks

I debated buying this for the longest time!  This is a limited edition set only available around this time of year.  However, the masks included are permanent and can be bought separately.  This contains two each of the following masks: Collagen Firming, Sake Yeast, Red Vine, Bird's Nest, Cooling Mask, Apple Polyphenol, Southern France Apricot, Aloe, Pearl Powder, Bulgarian White Rose, Black Pearl, Natto, Mixed Berries, Strawberry Yogurt, Q10, Strawberry Cherry Blossom

I also picked up this at the drugstore:
AB Mezical Fiber
This product is similar to Mezaik and is used to make double eyelids.  I have double eyelids, but I wanted to adjust the width.  A lot of girls in Japan now do this.

I also picked up a few things at the duty free.


Clinique Clarifying Moisture Lotion 3


I have been using the toner from the 3-step skin care, in addition to the moisturizing toners I use.  I decided to try this toner to see the difference with the regular 3-step toner.
This toner is over $75 in Japan, although it is just $20 in the US for the same size.


Clinique Three Little Soaps

This is also part of their 3-step skin care. I now probably have enough soaps for the next 2 years!

MAC MSF Natural Medium Plus

This is a little dark on me, but the Medium was too pink, so I decided to try this.


Let me know if you want reviews!

xoxo, K

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Up and Down #10 / A Piece of Me... in January 2011

Happy New Year again to everyone!  I hope that 2011 will be an exciting and fulfilling year for you.

Here are my Ups & Downs for this month!

Ups:
- Mezaik
Yes, the Japanese magazine Ageha has influenced me.  Like some other girls in Japan, I'm using Mezaik to adjust the width of my double eyelid to make it more attractive!

- My Beauty Diary masks (and getting ready to do a massive review of them)

- FINALLY getting an apartment after 2.5 months of living in a hotel!!

- Finding a Japanese restaurant that served Ozoni on New Year's Day. Ozoni is a type of soup eaten in Japan on New Year's Day.  The contents of the soup, the type of broth, etc vary widely between regions.  My New Year wouldn't be complete without it!  (I don't miss osechi, though)


Downs:
 - a certain travel brush set, that I used on my trip to Hawaii & Hong Kong.  A review is coming up.

- not going home for the holidays. 

----------------------------
It's time for A Piece of Me in January 2011.
This month...

I like: my iPhone. I keep finding great apps!  Which ones do you like?

I don't like: that I've almost run out of foundation.  What am I going to use next?  Should I buy some more VOV Watershot foundation from Gmarket since I like it so much?
 
I want you to know: that I'm trying to finish reviewing all of my holiday soaps and shower gels that I got in Hawaii.  I'm sorry that they are late!

I've planned:  to try to settle down, after all the traveling I've been doing

What are you planning for January?
xoxo, K

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Favorite Products 2010

Here are my favorite products of 2010! 
Can it be 2011 already? Happy New Year everyone!  I hope 2011 is a fantastic year for you. 

I had a hard time writing this post since there weren't that many products that I LOVED well enough to mention here.  I also have a lot of things in my stash that I haven't been able to try due to my move.  I still decided to do this post since I love reading other people's favorites.


Best Skin Care items

Soap & Glory The Fab Pore Facial Peel
I continue to love face masks that gently exfoliate my skin.  This was the winner this year.  This is probably the only product that I loved that I bought on a whim!  I usually research products very thoroughly before buying them, but I bought this product after Yinnie enabled me!

Lush Honey I Washed the Kids Soap
I typically don't like sweet scents, but I really like the scent of this soap! It makes a great lather and does not strip my skin.

Lush Coal Face Cleanser
(picture from lush.com)
This is another unexpected love.  I love the scent and I love how it works on my skin during the hot summer months. 

Best Makeup items

VOV Watershot Foundation
(review here and here)

I love that this foundation does not make my face feel oily, even during the hot summer months.  It looks very natural and there is enough coverage for me.

Barry M Dazzle Dusts in Mushroom
(mentioned several times in my blog, look here)
I knew that pigments were going to have to be on my list considering the number of times they've appeared on my Ups and Downs.  I had a really hard time deciding on the color I loved the most this year!  Mushroom is a purple shade which is very wearable if you like shimmer.

(swatch second from left)



Best Tools
Sonia Kashuk Flat Top Brush
(mentioned several times in my blog, look here)
This is absolutely LOVE. I love it for applying and buffing in my liquid foundations.  It is also amazingly affordable.

MAC 217
This was in my favorites of 2009.  I stopped using it some time this year and rediscovered it later.  I think it is fantastic for applying and blending eyeshadow in the outer corner of my eye.

Miscellaneous favorites


Most reviewed brand on Cosmeddicted in 2010: 
I did reviews of 8 Lush products in 2010, and I have 4 more which I am currently working on.  I hope I can finish my reviews of the holiday items before they disappear from the stores!

I also enjoyed shopping at Lush stores very much.  Unlike some other brands (*cough* MAC *cough*), the people working at Lush have been very kind and helpful, and seem to really like the products that they sell. 

Favorite Bath & Body Works scents
Twilight Woods
Velvet Tuberose 
Moonlight Path
No surprises here.  The only change versus last year is that I tried and fell in love with Velvet Tuberose.

Favorite blog post (my personal opinion)
Beauty Blender vs Sonia Kashuk Blending Sponge comparison

I had a great time figuring out how to show the difference in density of the two sponges!
Catherine of Strawberry Mochi kindly liked to it on a MUA forum. Thank you for the shout out!


Most viewed post on this blog
Canmake Melty Nude Lip Swatches

Since posting this in August, it has remained my top viewed post.  I did this post on a whim and I'm glad that I did, since it seems to have helped a lot of people!

Best blogging experience:
By far, meeting other bloggers.  I've been very blessed this year.  Thank you so much to the following bloggers who have taken time out of their busy days to spend time with me!

- East Coast girls: Mona, Tammy, Diana, Jenn, Jenn
- UK and Europe girls: Yinnie, Jamilla, Eve, Jess, Rowena
- Hawaii girls: Wuzzy, Mai & Kat
- HK girls: Jennifer


That's it for my favorites!  If I didn't list a certain category, it's probably because of one of the following reasons:
(1) I didn't try enough products from that category to have a favorite.
For example, I used 3-4 blushes this whole year. I did not fall in love with any of them, hence none of them are listed.


(2) My favorite product did not change from last year.
I still use only the Eyelashes Fixer EX for my falsies glue (this product is VERY popular in Japan!) and I still use up a bottle of Gokujyun toner every two weeks.


What were your favorites for 2010?  I hope some amazing products come out in 2011!  Oh wait, maybe my wallet doesn't want that...

xoxo, K

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