Beauty Product Reviews – September 2011

This month I have 2 products that I will be reviewing. I also decided to use a simple ‘rating’ system for my reviews going forward: Love it, Like it, or Hate It. Remember if you have any questions or suggestions for future reviews, leave me a comment and I’ll do my best to answer/accommodate. I hope you enjoy!


They’re Real! – Mascara – By Benefit

Benefit Website

What does it cost? $29 CND (Shoppers Drug Mart)

What does it do?  Lengthens, curls, volumizes, lifts & separates. Our jet black, long-wearing formula won’t smudge or dry out. A specially designed brush reveals lashes you never knew you had!

How do you use it? Apply to clean lashes. Position wand horizontally & wiggle from side to side, base to tip. Hold wand vertically & stroke upward to curl & separate. The tip of the wand is dome-shaped, allowing for an effortless vertical application on those teeny tiny lashes.

My thoughts: After hearing about this product for a few months, and reading some mixed reviews, I decided to try this product out for myself. I was alarmed by the price of this product, this is the most I have ever spent on a mascara. As you can imagine I had very high hopes simply because of the price tag. After trying this out for a week, let me say, this mascara is marvelous!  The product does not clump or flake even after a full day of wear. It does not make your lashes dry or crisp, rather they are soft and bendable! I found that if you are aiming for volume, you need to be quick with your coats, as the product dries to the touch fairly quickly. I have used a lash primer in the past, but They’re Real works well on its own with no primer. It achieves better results than I have received using a primer and mascara together. My one and only complaint is the wand bristles, they are plastic and sharp, and I have managed on more than one occasion to poke myself in the eye, so be slow and cautious when applying.

Here is a before & some afters!

The verdict: LOVE IT!


Straight  – Straight Style Extender – Living Proof

Living Proof Website

What does it cost? $34 CDN (Sephora store – Sherway Gardens)

What does it do? Straight is the only straight styler that can be reapplied to dry hair without build-up to extend the life of your style and extend your time between shampoos — for a straight style that lasts for days.

How do you use it? You apply this product by spraying for about 10 seconds to clean wet hair. *TIP* Hold your breath because the smell is strong! Once applied, comb through wet strands for an even application. Continue by blow drying your hair with a round or paddle brush. Once dry you can apply to your dry hair in small sections as you proceed to flat-iron your hair.

My thoughts: I was very skeptical of this product, having tried countless straightening products over the last 10 years. Earlier this year I had a Keratin Treatment and loved it, however could not justify the cost of continuing to purchase them. I needed something more affordable that somewhat resembled the results. I stumbled across this product and decided to give it a shot.

*Background – I have not used any harsh chemical products/shampoo on my hair for about 5 years. I use a natural sulfate free shampoo (WEN). My hair type is semi-thick, wavy and frizzy. Your results may vary!*

I used this product 3 times since purchasing it and results appear to be getting better as I get more comfortable with the product application. It has cut the drying time down, and feels weightless and NON greasy. Flat ironing is quicker with less repeat involved. My hair did not frizz upon being outside in the humid weather. My favourite result of this product is the ‘day after’ hair! For the 1st time in my life I woke up the next day with ZERO kinks or waves. I did NOT have to re-flat-iron my hair again! This feature alone is priceless! I spray it on my hair between shampoos and it does not make my hair feel heavy or oily. ‘Straight’ actually forms a barrier around the hair shaft and prevents build up from dirt, oils & air-born pollutants.

This only down side of this is the ongoing cost. It is hard to gauge how long the bottle will last as it’s an aerosol (I can’t tell by holding it, as it always feel empty).  If it lasts 2 months I would be happy. Otherwise this may be a ‘special occasion’/ ‘humid season’ only product.

The verdict: LOVE IT!

*******UPDATE NOV 16, 2011*******
I’ve been using Living Proof Straight for a couple of months now, so I have some things I would like to add. If I don’t use this every time I wash my hair, I’m stuck with flat-ironing my hair every single morning, even if I just flat-ironed before bed :(
When I use this I do not have to touch up anything in the morning, which saves me a good 20 minutes.
Also, the product is STILL not empty and I’ve used it almost every time I’ve washed my hair since purchasing. So for the time I save, I think its 100% worth the cost. This is officially my HG straightening product.


So that’s it! I hope you enjoyed that review and will read again next time. Let me know in the comments if you have tried either of these products and want to share your verdict! Have a wonderful September.


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