Saturday, September 30, 2006

shopping issues, luca turin can sell anything

I identify a lot with this post from High Fashion Girl.

Have you read Luca Turin's September column at NZZ Folio? I don't even like most lavenders, but promptly after reading the column, I was off and searching the web to find places to buy Caldey Island Lavender Water. Turin's descriptions are simply entrancing. I'm looking forward to his book "Secret of Scent" which will be out in Nov. in the U.S. I think it's already been published in Europe and available in Japan, which makes me wonder why the U.S. publisher is so slow.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Armani lemming!

I finally stopped by Isetan today and asked the Armani saleslady to show me a nude lip look. It was beautiful! Just the lipstick (over concealer) was a lovely nude (just a hint of rose/mauve to it, so it wasn't colorless). And when she applied a lip shimmer to it, it was really gorgeous. Such a simple look but so pretty! Specks of gold sparkled in the gloss. I really may have to go back and buy it. I think I'll ask the Saleslady to reapply it so I can confirm that the colors are correct. I don't know what color shimmer she applied and I think she used Armanisilk lipstick #18, but I want to be sure. I tried replicating the look with other lip glosses, but I don't have anything with that pretty gold glitter. It's not a metallic look but more glittery. A clear gap in my lip gloss collection. :P

I'm balking a bit at the price though! Both the lipstick and the shimmer together would come to more than $50. I wonder which I want more. I could buy the other one for Christmas :D

I liked the saleslady too. She was helpful and not pushy. When I told her I would think about the lipstick, she chirped that I should come back anytime. I haven't run across too many cheerful salesladies in dept. stores yet. I don't remember what she looked like though, and I didn't get her name.

I'm very impressed by the fuschia Chanel lipstick I have. At first I was a bit daunted by the brightness, but it's very blendable so I'm using just a touch to get a light pink look. The Estee Lauder lipsticks blend very well too. I suppose that's a sign of quality. The Fasio lipstick I have doesn't blend very well.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

mini reviews: Fruits & Passion, Caswell Massey, L'Occitane

- Fruits & Passion Fruity Deodorant in Pear-Linden: The pear linden smell is lovely, but I'm finding the deodorant to be a little too heavily perfumed. I catch whiffs of it at work. It's not quite complex enough to want to perfume myself with it. I sampled Solstis deodorant in the Manila store, and that smells lovely! Light and interesting and summery. I may buy that next.

I have not yet opened my little pot of Monoi Hand Butter but the gardenia scent is luxurious. I look forward to using it in winter. The jasmine lotions also smelled divine; that may be a future purchase if I ever get tired of gardenia and almond. Current objects of desire (and greed):
* Body Care Gift Set in Monoi
* Refreshing Ritual
(Fruits & Passion have a Canadian site too.)

- Caswell Massey Almond sampler kit: Not bad. The unscented lip balm is very moisturizing so I enjoy using it at night. A little too greasy for a repurchase though. The shower lotion and hand lotion are very nice, but a little too sweet like marzipan for my taste. Haven't tried the almond shampoo or bar soap yet. Someday I hope to find Crawford & Williams hand soap for sale somewhere! That is a perfect almond scent. L'Occitane's almond line is nice, but way too pricy in Japan for me to stomach buying.

- L'Occitane Almond shea butter soap: Meh. Not much of any scent, not to mention almond. But the soap itself seems like a very nice, high quality soap. I was annoyed when one saleslady in Omotesando told me that L'Occitane doesn't make almond soap, even though I knew they sold it in the Shinjuku shop. I guess they're no longer producing it, as I could only find a link to the milk and verbena scents.

I would like to try the Almond Shower oil sometime; now it comes in a nice travel size.

Friday, September 08, 2006

mini u.k. street poll on celebrity perfumes

One of the reporters on Trevor Nelson's weekend radio show (BBC radio) went out and had three teenagers sample three celebrity perfumes and rank them. The reporter remarked on the booming celebrity fragrance trend. The sampled perfumes were JLo Love at First Glow, Sean John's Unforgivable, and Britney Spears' Curious.

The final ranking:
3. JLo - comments about the bottle: "It's quite stylish, I think a lot of girls our age would like it." About the scent, "Um, It's not my favorite but it's ok. Um, it's for like older peo... older teens." (LOL at the definition of age).
2. Sean John - "Smells quite nice, a bit fruity." "slightly fe-mi-nine smell, it's not very manly..."
and ....
1. Britney Spears "It smells quite young, like fresh and fruity. Quite good for our age group, I think. Smells how it looks, you know what I mean."

The kids seemed to really like the fruity juice: "It smells really good." Trevor Nelson would only say that Curious smells "really young" to him. And he tried Unforgivable, which was "not bad." Very amusing segment.

The perfume section of Trevor Nelson's Saturday show is at about 10:46 (an hour and 46 minutes into the show) so if you hit the skip 15min button 6 times and the skip 5 min button 3 times, you'll be right at the interview clip. I don't know how long that weekend's show will be up though.

Shiseido Anessa town use sunscreen

There's a lot I could post about my trip to Manila (fun!), but I am being lazy so for now I'll just put a mini-review of Shiseido's Anessa town use sunscreen SPF 30 PA++, from Shiseido's Anessa line of suncreens and sun-protecting makeup.

I finally used up my little bottle of sunblock from last year (or 2 years ago), so thought I would give this popular sunscreen line a try. Sunblock in Japan is pretty expensive; I'd say twice as expensive as in the U.S., but Anessa and Kanebo's competitor Allie go for about $26 for 60 grams. Very expensive in my opinion. However, a friend of a friend buys a ton of Shiseido sunblock whenever she visits Japan, so I wanted to see if it was worth the price tag. Also, now is a good time to buy sunblock since it's on sale at certain drugstores. I picked up mine for 30% off. I would go back and buy more, but this tube may last me a year.

I'm very impressed so far. It has a pleasant, light rose scent (a Shiseido trademark, if I'm not mistaken), and feels very light. Apparently it's supposed to provide a nice base for your makeup, hee. I guess that's very important. It is also advertized as waterproof (although it is for everyday use as opposed to the beach, so I don't think it'll stand up too well to a swim). They recommend you remove the sunscreen with makeup remover. I enjoy applying it each morning, which is a plus (the power of fragrance and texture). I'd like to compare this sunscreen with much cheaper alternatives like Banana Boat Faces Plus and Coppertone Spectra, neither of which are available in Japan. Still, might as well take advantage of the local products.

I wonder if I should still look for a moisturizer.

In unrelated news, I was surprised to find Crest entered the dental products market here! Although they've only started with some motorized toothbrushes. No toothpaste.

Has anyone tried out Integrate, one of Shiseido's new cosmetic brands? Angelina Jolie is the spokesmodel, but I'm bothered by the peachy lipstick they put on her (I just looked at the website and the color looks much better. I think the printing job wasn't very good). The line itself seems pretty nice. The glosses and lipsticks are light but pretty, and they have a very tempting gloss in a lip crayon form! The line is very reasonably priced with lipsticks and lipglosses around $10. 1/3 of the price of Maquillage.

I just noticed that Shiseido has an eponymous suncare line also. I wonder if that's what the friend of a friend buys.