Monday, July 14, 2008

Drugstore Buys

hello readers! boo, it's Monday! Monday's are the worst because they're the very first day of a long, 5-day work week that seems to stretch on and on forever. my prescription for a way to get through a never-ending Monday? planning an evening trip to your local drugstore to haul some fun, inexpensive beauty goodies! lately i've realized that my recent posts have been mostly about drugstore items, and i wanted to let you know that i have not shunned high-end beauty booty, i've just been on a drugstore streak lately. i promise lots of pricey, high-end reviews in the weeks to come!

to begin my recommendations for great guilt-free drugstore buys, we'll start with my new favorite cleanser, Garnier Nutritioniste Nutri-Pure Detoxifying Gel Cleanser, around $6. i decided to pick this up on a whim last week because it was on sale for the ridiculously cheap price of $3.19, and because i've been curious about the Garnier skincare for a while now. let's just say i was not disappointed! this cleanser is chock-full of good-for-your skin ingredients like vitamin E, grape extract, green leaf extract and vitamin B5. it's also oil-free and non-comedogenic, so it's safe to use for those who are acne-prone as well as those who aren't. it's allergy and dermatologist tested, and it gently cleanses without drying the skin. i am in love with this cleanser because it lathers up nicely with one pump, smells clean and fresh, takes off every speck of my makeup (including eye makeup) and doesn't leave my skin feeling tight and dry. the apple green packaging is cute looking and super convenient with it's pump dispenser that can be turned to the 'closed' position so that it won't leak product if you have to throw it into your purse or travel with it. i feel that this cleanser really gets my skin squeaky clean in a way that some others don't, and i like that especially right now in the hot weather that makes my skin feel more sweaty and oily than usual. so far after using it for about 3 days, my skin is calm, clear, and soft. i'm sold!

next up is something that i'm very excited about finding! Dove's Cream Oil Ultra Rich Velvet Beauty Bar Soap, $3.89 for two bars, is the second version of this hydrating Dove soap formula. first there was the body wash version, which i own and like except for the fact that the lid traps water from the shower and won't let it out, so when you pick it up to use it, old, cold shower water squeezes out along with your shower cream! this really grosses me out, so much so that it prevents me from using the body wash, because i just imagine that there are all kinds of nasty germs and bacteria brewing in that trapped water! not the kind of thing i want to rub all over my skin. such a shame, because the formula has oil in it and really helps to moisturize dry, flaky skin. i'm so happy that now i can use it without the gross water problem since Dove has introduced the bar version! now that i've washed with both formulations, i even think i like the beauty bar better because it's lather seems fluffier and i feel slightly more moisturized and smooth after my shower.

if you're like me and are always on the lookout for that perfect lip balm, i would highly suggest giving Burt's Bees Beeswax Lip Balm, $3.49, a shot! this 95.29% natural lip balm is packed with healthy, hydrating ingredients like ultra-emollient lanolin, coconut oil, sunflower oil, and beeswax to seal moisture into the thin, delicate skin on your lips. what has me hooked on this lip balm is it's light, smooth texture. when i first applied, it seemed like i wasn't really getting enough of the balm to transfer onto my lips no matter how many times i swiped! this frustrated me, and i almost wrote it off as a miss, but it was after i went on with the rest of my day and noticed that over an hour later the balm was still perfectly in place and my lips were very soft and smooth! i guess i'm used to a more heavy, waxy feeling texture, but this featherlight balm stayed intact for longer than any other balm i've ever used. it has no taste, which is a huge plus for me, and no artificial smell! score! and, since this balm is so thin while still being very effective, it makes it perfect to layer underneath glosses or lipsticks when your lips need some extra hydration. a great buy for under $5, these balms also come in different flavors and formulas, like Medicated, Lifeguard's Choice, Honey, and Replenishing Balm with Pomegranate Oil!

last but never least, if you're looking for a waterproof mascara to keep your lashes looking lovely in the rising temperatures, i would highly recommend Cover Girl Volume Exact Waterproof Mascara in Blackest Black, $7.50. as i've written before, i'm a big fan of the regular version of this thickening, lengthening, non-clumping mascara, and the waterproof version doesn't disappoint. i decided to pick up a waterproof mascara because it's been ungodly hot here and i didn't want to risk having a mascara meltdown, so i went with a trusted favorite, and i'm glad i did! although the waterproof version of Volume Exact seems to be a tiny bit less volumizing, it still gives the same great results as the original, and it comes off easily with my Clinique Take the Day Off Makeup Remover for Lids, Lashes, and Lips, $16.50. i've used Take the Day Off exclusively since i was a teenager, and it works so well that i've never even felt the need to experiment with other makeup removers! i usually tend to avoid waterproof mascaras like the plague because i think that all that extra pulling and tugging to remove them wreaks havoc on delicate lashes, but sometimes it's a necessary evil, and as long as you remove the mascara correctly, your lashes should be ok. my tip for tug-free waterproof mascara removal is to take a cotton pad (NOT a cotton ball, i don't think they work half as well), saturate half of it with makeup remover, and press it onto your lashes for a good 1-1.5 minutes for each eye. this will begin to melt and loosen up the bond the mascara has created over your lashes, so that you will only have to use the most minimal pressure to remove the pigment. after holding the pad over your lashes for a minute, apply gentle pressure and sweep the pad straight downwards, repeating as necessary. never, ever wipe back and forth over your lashes with the pad, it will cause unnecessary pulling and tugging on the fragile skin around your eyes and damage to your lashes. it's my personal belief that unless you have major mascara smudging problems, you should only use waterproof mascaras on special occasions, and your lashes will thank you for it!

what are your favorite drugstore guilty pleasures? your favorite, cheapest finds? let me know in the comments!

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