Sunday, April 29, 2012

Sunblock Sunday: DeVita Solar Body Block SPF 30+

I have been wanting to try this for a long time, but didn't want to make a special order on Lucky Vitamin just for it, so I was thrilled to find a place, Pure Complexions, that sells samples. I like that it's relatively inexpensive for a "natural" sunblock and doesn't have a lot of occlusive ingredients. The texture is also really amazing. There are concerns among some denizens of the reviewerverse that it doesn't provide the sun protection that it says it does, but I wonder if they're just not using an appropriate amount, or if they're sweating it off and then not reapplying.

But back to the texture - it's a very lightweight cream with a bit of a gel consistency. I found it nicely moisturizing but not too thick. It seemed to do well under makeup. My main reservation with this stuff is that I noticed that my eyes seemed to water for a little after application. 
 Look at my face - there's not a huge difference in how the two sides look, which is how it should be.

I don't know if I'll buy the full size yet or not - I'm leaning towards yes, but I also think that this will probably be more of a winter product for me. I can't say I really tested it well enough to say that I didn't burn because I used this or I didn't burn because I wasn't outside in bright enough sun long enough.
The deets:

Size - 7 oz.
Price - (MSRP) $27.95 - but you can get it at Lucky Vitamin for 17.49 (plus six bucks shipping)
Availability - hippie marts, Devita's website, Lucky Vitamin (and similar)
Dollars per ounce - $4 (at retail) $2.50 (on LV)

SPF - 30+
Active Ingredients: Zinc Oxide 19%
Inactive Ingredients:Aloe barbadensis* (aloe vera gel), Water (purified), Camellia sinensis (Japanese green tea) leaf extract, Capric/caprylic triglycrides (derived from coconut oil), Glycerin (vegetable), Butyrospermum parkii (shea butter), Olea europeaea (olive) oil, Lecithin phospholipid, Hyaluronic acid (vegan source), Simmondsia chinensis (jojoba) seed oil*, Squalane (olive), Panthenol (vitamin B5), Tocopherol (vitamin E), NaPCA, Rose moschata (rose hips) oil, Retinol (vitamin A), Centella asiatica (Gotu Kola), Copper gluconate, Magnesium ascorbyl phosphate, Fucus vesiculosis (seaweed) extract, Allantoin, Sodium riboflavin phosophate, Chondrus crispus (Irish moss), Lavandula officinalis (lavender) essential oil, Anthemis nobilis (chamomile) flower essential oil, Vitis vinifera (grape) seed extract.

Will you be trying this out? Have you tried it? What did you think?

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Sunblock Sunday: Lavanila The Healthy Sun Screen SPF 40 Face Cream

Phyrra raves about this, so the (second-to-last) time I went to Sephora, I asked for a sample. Have I mentioned how much I love Sephora's generous sample policy?

Let's talk about sun protection - I didn't burn with this (but I didn't really test it, either), and it seems suited for everyday face use. If you're around sun for more than incidental exposure, this is something you'd want to reapply. I like how it has both UVA and UVB protection in there (zinc's good for both, titanium for all but the shortest UVA rays).

Now, let's talk texture. This is a white-colored cream that rubs in somewhat shiny, but doesn't feel greasy. I like it. One of the pictures shows a blob on my hand, and underneath that blob is an area where I've rubbed it in. Then, there's a part of my face. I've applied this to the right side but not the left. I feel like the right side is shinier and somewhat lighter than the left.

It wears well under makeup, but it's slightly too emollient for me. I swatched this next to Lavanila's body sunblock in the store, and liked the texture of the body product better, so I bought that on my last trip to Sephora. I would wear this to work, but not on field day, and I'd think about reapplying something if I was going outside with the kids at the after school program. If your skin's on the dryer side and you need something with sun protection, don't like silicones, and do like physical blockers, then I'd try this.

The deets:

Size - 1.8 oz.
Price - $28 (available at Sephora)
Dollars per ounce - $15.56
SPF - 40
Active Ingredients - Zinc Oxide 5.0%, Titanium Dioxide 7.5%

Inactive ingredients - Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice* (Aloe, Water), Capric Caprylic Triglycerides (Coconut Oil), Butyrospermum Parkii* (Shea Butter), Glyceryl Stearate, Glycerin, Cetyl Alcohol (Coconut Oil), Jojoba Oil*, Ethyl Hexyl Palmitate (Palm Oil), Morinda Citrifolia (Noni Juice), Calendula Officinalis (Calendula) Flower Extract*, Panthenol (Provitamin B5), Polyglyceryl-3 Stearate (Vegetable Glycerin/Palm Oil), Alpha Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Allantoin (Vegetable), Sodium PCA (Amino Acid), Hyaluronic Acid, Phenethyl Alcohol & Ethyl Hexyl Glycerin (Plant-Based Preservatives), Vanilla Planifolia (Vanilla) Extract*, Green Tea Extract. *Certified Organic

Will you be trying this out? Have you tried it? What did you think?

Sunday, April 15, 2012

New Feature: Sunblock Sunday!

Finding my Holy Grail sunblock products is quite a chore for me, but it's a necessary evil (see my post about sunblock and my experience with skin cancer). I need my products to be functional, not horrifically expensive, and not break me out. Cosmetically elegant formulas are also a HUGE PLUS. I prefer my sunblocks to have zinc oxide as one of the active ingredients, lots of fragrances that get put in sunscreen are stinky and headache-inducing, and I'm allergic to beeswax. All of these factors limit my choices.

I've recently acquired a small pile of sunblock samples and a few full-size products, and I plan to review a new one each week until I run out of sunblocks I care to sample.

What's in it for you? A breakdown of the ingredients, a photo of what it looks like squeezed out and rubbed into the back of my hand, and some half-face shots (maybe, if I'm brave!), and my thoughts on functionality and how nice the products are to use.

First up: Lavanila The Healthy Sunblock for Face - SPF 40.
Next up: Devita Solar Body Block SPF 30.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Were you aware?

Jill from Just Peachy tagged me for this game a bit ago, and I'm just now getting around to it!

The Rules
1. Each person must post 11 things about themselves on their blog.
2. Answer the questions the tagger has set for you plus eleven questions for the people you have tagged to answer.
3. Choose eleven people and link them in your tag.
4. Email the person to let them know that they’ve been tagged.
5. No tag backs.
6. You legitimately have to tag.

Eleven Factoids About Me:
1. I do not like cheese. Unless it's on pizza, and even then, I sometimes end up reducing the amount. I think the stuff is disgusting.
2. I speak Spanish fluently, and also know some Portuguese and French.
3. Washing dishes is my absolute least favorite chore. And there's a mountain of them in the kitchen. Ack!
4. My hair goes just past my waist. People at school have freaked out about its length on the occasions I've left it down.
5. I will obsessively rearrange my makeup and nail polish stashes, but everything else I own is quite disorganized.
6. I think dinosaurs are awesome.
7. I am pretty handy with the electric drill.
8. I still use a flip phone.
9. Breakfast foods are my favorites. I love brunch!
10. I want to be a night owl, but I have to be an early bird. So in the morning, I'm cranky and out of it.
11. Coffee and chocolate might just be the best things out there. And, they both predate sliced bread!

Jill's Questions for Me:
1. Have you done much traveling? If so, where?
I've been to 24 of the 50 states, and I'm hoping to get to 30 by the time I turn 30. I've also seen a lot of Eastern Canada, lived in Seville, Spain for three and a half months, and a few years ago did a summer program in Salamanca, Spain and also got to go to Portugal as part of that. When the program was over, the man met me in Madrid and we spent time there, in Seville (so I could show him the magic!), in Gibraltar, and then we went to London. And this past weekend, I went to Chicago for the first time!

2. What is your idea of relaxing?
A cold or hot drink, depending, and a comfy place to sit. I also enjoy spending time outside and going for walks.

3. How long have you been blogging and why did you start your blog?
About two and a half years, I think. I was going through a difficult time when I started, and writing the blog helped me feel human. I couldn't control a lot of what was going on in my life, but I could control what my face looked like.

4. Bacon?
Yes, please.

5. Do you have a monthly makeup budget?
I did, but then I quit. I think I'm going to try being on a low-buy for a few months - viewing it as an experiment, a how long can I go? type thing might be better.

6. If you could live anywhere, where would it be?
Oh dear - too many considerations! Anywhere? Probably San Francisco. 

7. Do you prefer to shop online or in actual stores?

8. Do you do have an interesting job? Are you still in school? What is your dream job?
I am never bored at my job. I teach Spanish at an elementary school. I'm also finishing a Masters thesis, but I live far away from the school. I don't know that I have a dream job. I've gotten caught up in the "I have to do this one thing" feeling before, and it usually makes things so high-stakes that I'm invariably let down when it doesn't work out. So, I'm taking it one step at a time.

9. How many text messages do you send in a day? One or two.

10. Do you have a close relationship with your family? Not super-close, but not distant or chilly, either.

11. What is your go-to makeup brand?
Tarte, Urban Decay, Silk Naturals, Physicians Formula. I have a handful of brands I like a lot, but so far there hasn't been one that covers all my needs and wants.

I tag you!
1. Nea - Fashioned in Finland
2. Blix - Glitter is my Crack
3. Susan - Darling Girl Cosmetics
4. Ice Queen - Ice Queen's Nail Parlour
5. Baroque in Babylon
6. Judikins
7. Emily Noel - Beauty Broadcast
8. Dao - My Makeup Blog
9. Heather - Eyeconic Makeup. (I see you've been tagged already - I am exempting you from tagging)
10. Cait - SwatchStorm
11. Emily - Sparkle and Shade

(why are so many beauty bloggers named Emily? It's a great name, for sure - must be we're all beautiful!)

My 11 Questions For You:
1. What is your favorite sandwich?
2. Pants, skirts, or either?
3. What's your biggest "vice"?
4. Chocolate, or vanilla?
5. You win an all-expenses paid trip for two to anyplace you want to go. Where do you go, and who do you bring with you?
6. What's your favorite thing about your face?
7. What's your favorite thing about your body?
8. School/work, family, SO, me time, health. Rank from most important to least important.
9. You have to live in a dystopian future portrayed in a novel. Which one is it?
10. Do you speak any additional languages (besides English)?
11. Do you have any surprising talents?