Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Braun SE7681 Silk-épil 7 Wet and Dry Epilator Review

It has taken me quite a while to get to this review,  between technical troubles and having other (sponsored)  posts that had to take priority.  But I promised a review,  and better late than never right?

This epilator was my Christmas gift from my mom and sister.  I had been wanting an epilator for quite a while.  Much as I love my Venus Breeze, the refills have gotten ridiculously expensive.  That and I am a total klutz, when I shave I cut myself.  Guaranteed.  I've been gun shy about shaving since managing to give myself a major cut last year (I will spare you the gory details but it was horror flick worthy,  I assure you). So when my mom sent some Christmas cash and my sister sent an Amazon gift certificate,  I did some research.

I looked at dozens of epilators,  comparing features,  prices,  and reviews.  I finally settled on the Silk-épil 7. I have now been using it regularly for a couple of months,  and I love it!

Reasons I chose this epilator:

Cordless: Let's be real. For an appliance like this a cord is only going to get in the way.  The fact that it is cordless means it is easy to use,  anywhere you want/need to use it.

Rechargeable battery: It has a good rechargeable battery,  so there is no need to constantly buy new batteries for it. The battery holds a charge very well.  I can typically get four or five uses from a single charge.

Wet/Dry use: It can be used either wet or dry.  This means if you so desire you can do your epilating in the shower. I like options.  Supposedly epilating can be more comfortable "wet" than dry.  Can't say I notice a difference in the comfort level either way.

Full Body Use: Not all epilators are designed to be used all over the body - legs,  bikini zone,  under arms,  face. This one is.  Since I planned to use this for all areas,  this was a key feature for me.

Shaver Head Attachment: This model includes a shaver head attachment. I love this because it means not only do you have an epilator,  you also have an electric shaver in one unit.  This is helpful for a couple reasons. 1. If you have waited too long between epilating sessions you will want to trim the hair first.  Having the shaver head for this means going from trimming to epilating can be done quickly and easily without the need for additional appliances.  2. If you have never epilated before but really want to try it,  you may not like it.  Provided you like electric shavers,  your investment in this unit will still be useful for you.  3. Even if you have epilated,  there might be some areas you just can't get used to it.  I,  for example,  just can't get used to epilating my under arms.  I am also still trying to get used to epilating the bikini area,  which oddly enough I find less sensitive to epilating than my under arms.  The shaver head comes in handy for these areas.

My thoughts after a couple months of use: Every so often I will miss a few hairs when using this,  so it doesn't necessarily get *everything*, but darned close.  I do still use a traditional razor for my under arms and bikini area on occasion if I need to get a really smooth shave,  but typically using the shaver head attachment is sufficient for me.  It is relatively quiet,  for the type of appliance it is.  It has two speeds and a handful of caps to use based on your needs and preferences.  It has a bright LED light to help you see to make sure you don't miss any hairs,  though certain areas/angles of use the light doesn't help all the time,  but it definitly comes in handy for the most part.

This also comes with a little brush to help clean the various parts,  and a pack of pre-epilation wipes.  The wipes basically just make sure your skin is clean before you get started,  which is important but the wipes really are not necessary so long as you bathe before epilating.  I do like having the wipes for those times when I spontaneously decide to epilate before going out or something,  when I may not need to shower otherwise and showering just to epilate would be silly. There is also a little drawstring pouch to store everything in.

One question people will have,  especially those who have never used an epilator before,  is "Does it hurt?". I can't say whether you would find it painful or not,  as we all have different levels of pain tolerance. While it certainly is not a pleasant sensation,  I wouldn't really describe it as "painful" either.  All I can really say is that with a couple uses you will probably get used to it,  but the first time you ever epilate yeah it is probably going to be pretty uncomfortable.  The first time I ever used an epilator I got maybe a dozen hairs or so and had to stop.  I really,  really wanted to give up the standard razors,  though,  so I kept at it and now epilating (my legs)  is something that does not faze me in the least.  As I said above I am still getting used to it for other areas of my body,  and honestly am not sure if I will ever get used to it for all over use.  But even if the only continued use is on my legs,  it is worth it to me.

Another note on epilating: You have to make sure that you exfoliate well on a regular basis when you use an epilator (or if you wax!)  to prevent ingrown hairs.  This doesn't have to require any additional products on your part - just use a loofah to wash with when you shower.  As long as you're doing a thorough job of soaping up,  the loofah will be sufficient exfoliation for this purpose.

If you are in the market for an epilator,  I would definitly recommend this one. It is a bit of an investment at roughly $100 (click here for Amazon product page) , but for me it is absolutely worth it!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Caress Forever Body Wash

I first heard about this stuff a couple months ago but it has only hit the store shelves in my area in the last couple of weeks.  I had to try it.  Caress is one of my favorite soap/body wash brands,  and the whole idea just seemed interesting to me.

The product claim is "A touch-activated technology that releases a burst of perfume every time you touch your skin,  all day long." I mean it sounds awesome,  right?  Maybe not if you love your perfume,  but for someone who does not otherwise wear fragrance or scented products every day,  this sounds like a really wonderful way to make sure you smell good all day even on your non-perfume days. If it works,  that is.

This was the only fragrance they had at the store but apparently there are two fragrances in this "collection". Click here to see another blogger's thoughts on both fragrances, if you're curious.

I've been using this body wash for a couple of weeks now and I have to say,  I am far from impressed.

The fragrance,  described as "an irresistible feminine fragrance with floral musk and sparkling pink roses laced in amber" is pleasant.  I like it.  It isn't fabulous,  but it isn't bad.  It is a very soft fragrance,  not overpowering which is good.  The problem is it just doesn't last.  Which naturally leads to the fact that the "touch activated" claims do not actually happen either.

The fragrance fades away within just a couple of hours. I even had a couple folks touch my skin then sniff,  as weird as that is, thinking maybe my nose had simply gotten used to the fragrance but it would be noticeable to someone else.  Nope. They couldn't detect the fragrance either. (And for the record,  I only made this request of people I know well.  I didn't just approach random strangers asking them to smell me.  Cause that would be incredibly weird and inappropriate.  Lol)

While I was hoping this would work,  I didn't really expect it to.  So I am not too disappointed.  But I will not be repurchasing.  There are plenty of other soaps and body washes out there,  from Caress as well as other brands,  that provide longer lasting fragrance.  If you want to check this stuff out I would suggest doing so with low expectations on the staying power of the fragrance,  and knowing the whole touch activated technology thing is marketing gimmick not legitimate product performance.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

SensatioNail Macchiato

SensatioNail  recently did a challenge on instagram,  and everyone who participated got two free colors of their choice.  I participated,  naturally,  and chose the colors Macchiato and Barely There.

My new pretties arrived yesterday and after a couple hours of debating which one to use first I opted for Macchiato.

I accidentally deleted the picture before making this post,  so you get to see a screenshot of the one I posted to instagram.

This picture was taken in natural,  overcast light without flash.

I absolutely love this color!  It is not marked as being a sheer color,  however for me it is sheer.  I think, and I cannot stress this enough, I just use much thinner coats than most people do though,  as other swatches I have seen for this color show it more opaque.  This is four coats and you can see it still has a little sheerness to it. Two coats of this would be perfect for a French manicure for me.

The color is really gorgeous.  It's a soft rosy mauve creme,  perfect for when you want something more subtle on your nails and very office-acceptable.

The color looks nothing like the box/bottle indicates,  which is a known issue with SensatioNail colors.  I have heard they are working to improve this in the near future though, so hopefully that happens soon.  In the mean time it is critical to look for swatches from your favorite bloggers before buying new colors.  (I checked out some swatches before selecting my freebies for participating in the instagram challenge.) The box color actually isn't too bad for Macchiato, but the color shown on the bottle is,  as you can see,  an entirely different story.

I will swatch Barely There in a couple weeks (approximately) once Macchiato is ready to go. I am in no rush to change colors,  I love this one so much!

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Always Off Makeup Cloths

I stumbled onto these at Walmart recently and was too curious to pass them up.

These are knockoffs of The Makeup Eraser,  which I am sure most of us have at least heard of by now.  The Makeup Eraser is $20 for one cloth though,  and these were $3 for a pack of three.  Obviously this was a far more budget friendly item. But does it work? 

Since I have not tried The Makeup Eraser,  I cannot compare these to it.  They are meant to be used in the same way.  The care instructions state to use mild detergent and no fabric softener or dryer sheets when washing them. 

To use them,  you first wet them with some water then squeeze out the excess so that the cloth is wet but not dripping.  Then you gently rub your makeup away.  You can use your favorite face wash,  but it is not necessary.  

I find it works best to hold the cloth over more heavily makeup-covered areas (like the eyelids) for a few seconds before gently rubbing. It seems to help soften the makeup to help it come off more quickly.  

I did not expect these to work.  I really didn't.  I mean,  nothing but this cloth and some water?  How can that possibly remove makeup?  But it actually works!  I tested the first couple of times with my usual go to makeup which is really soft and natural looking.  That was not a sufficient test to me.  So I tried some heavier,  smoky eye makeup with a good long lasting eye liner (Hard Candy Walk The Line,  which if you read my recent review you know once that stuff sets it does not budge for anything!) and a nice red lipstick.  Far from anything I would normally wear and I admit I just kinda slapped it on instead of trying to be careful to make it pretty.  Hey I was staying in,  it didn't have to be pretty it just had to be heavy to test these cloths out. A few hours later I got one of the cloths out and set about removing the makeup,  seriously doubting it would do as good of a job with the heavy makeup as with my go to soft makeup. 

It worked!  It did take a couple minutes to get through the eye makeup,  and there was still a tiny bit of mascara left at the base of my lashes near the top waterline. But it got nearly all my makeup off.  Including the red lipstick - without getting red lipstick smears around my mouth as happens if you try just wiping red lipstick off with a regular wash cloth or tissue.  

(Sorry,  I know these are not the best pictures but my cell phone camera is not great and the lighting in my bathroom is lousy so that doesn't help.  But they show how well these clothes remove makeup and that's the whole point!) 

I am so totally impressed by these! 

They are a bit smaller than The Makeup Eraser cloth is, I believe,  but they come in fun colors.  You can use each one about 4-6 times before washing it, depending on how much makeup you need to remove each time.  Both sides can be used,  so you can get about 2-3 uses on each side again depending on how much makeup you need to remove on each use.  

I would definitly recommend these for easy makeup removal!