Know the Difference | La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo, Europe vs. US

Many people in the beauty blogosphere abroad, at least all over Europe for now, are talking about an acne-preventive treatment that’s actually been working for many of them for acne prevention and clear skin maintenance.  The word of mouth skin renaissance that’s taking a lot of Europe by storm is brought to you by the La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo.  Ever since both Tanya Burr, Ruth Crilly, and several other bloggers shared their love for the La Roche-Posay Effaclar Skin Duo treatment this reportedly has has been flying off shelves by the thousands.  The European formulation of this works as an acne-preventive all-over moisturizer.  The thing is it’s great for treating acne that exists and preventing future acne while it does the good enough job of moisturizing for daytime they say.  However STOP!  I mean stop right now, if you are in the U.S. or about to ask someone in the U.S. to get it for you because you need to know the difference in formulations between the Effaclar duo made in France and the one made in the U.S., they’re just not the same.  The one that all these girls are raving about is the one made in Europe.  Please disregard the allure stamp of approval on the U.S. image on the right, I was just too lazy to remove it even though it was distracting.  I explain to you the difference in a few seconds…just as Ruth Crilly did in this video of her monthly favorites with her mom.

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The reason why the US formulation of La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo is different from the European one is is it contains 5.5 benzoyl peroxide, an intense, zit-zapping target medication for existing pimples so it certainly shouldn’t be used all over the face the way the other one can be.  The U.S. formulation is an Allure award-winning targeted spot treatment so you only put it directly on problem spots and areas, not on your entire face and I’m sure it works great that way, too.  The European Effaclar Duo formulation is a reported favorite because it’s paraben-free and they say even if you haven’t got a lot of acne all the time or if you hardly ever get zits it still works at helping unclog pores of overstaying blackheads and whiteheads (I’ve got lots) which can eventually become zits if infected.  The European Effaclar Duo fights skin congestion across the face, helps and soothes with hydration, and if you’ve got zits Ruth and/or Tanya says it supposedly eases them out properly with less damage to the skin.  I’ve actually just bought myself a tube of the European formulation off ebay from a Greek seller link here, it was 50% off and she also sells lots of other great skincare brands like Korres and Vichy Dermablend.  Hoping it arrives sooner than later.  I also gota Korres Thyme & Honey Exfoliating cleanser from the same seller which had free shipping so I bought it and made it ride along with my Effaclar duo.  They should both get here in ’bout 3 weeks.… Read the rest

MAC Studio Sculpt Concealer | More Longevity than Studio Finish

What you are looking at is not a paint pot!  Where has MAC Studio Sculpt Concealer been all my life?  Right under our noses at the MAC boutiques overshadowed by the popularity of its more slippy “sister” MAC Studio Finish concealer which I have reviewed in the past.  I think it’s also possible that because of the packaging that’s exactly the same as the MAC Paint Pots people may not have recognized this in-store as a concealer.  I’m sure a number of you have already discovered Studio Sculpt for yourselves noh?  Well, possibly not because a lot of us go by recommendation.  Let’s talk about the other one first.  MAC Studio Finish, was made a massive sellout majorly because of  recommendation by the UK’s Pixiwoo sisters and many other influential individuals online.  I don’t doubt that its more moist texture is probably great in dry countries but the thing is here…in this tropical country, in the summer, nah.  Don’t get me wrong, MAC Studio Finish is a great concealer in a dry air-conditioned room or studio (for fast photo shoots) but outdoors Studio Finish doesn’t stand a chance on your face unless you have extremely dry skin or powder it silly every half hour.  At room temperature Studio Finish sits in my kit, greasy shine collecting on top.  MAC Studio Sculpt on the other hand surprised me at the testing counter with stronger cling to the skin in a humid climate and a more solid make of cake.  It’s got awesome pigmented coverage, is not as greasy as Studio Finish, and for storage glory points hey look, it comes in a glass pot you can twist really tight to keep it fresh.

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It’s nice for a change to see a product that says “Made in Italy” that doesn’t occur too often.  MAC Studio Sculpt concealer has a comparable finish to Bobbi Brown’s creamy concealer, it’s  just ever so slightly…as in slightly  thicker and is reasonably less expensive at Php1000 a pot, you get relatively the same amount of product as a Studio Finish pot.  Read more to see this product swatched and applied on me.… Read the rest

Bless Their Bags | Help For Betty & Donnarence

Hi, my beloved readers.  We all need to help each other and today I would just like to take a few moments of your time to extend a message of help for 2 girls I know by sharing their situation with you.  This is not a scam and I know some of you have been reading the blog for 2 years now.  I know both Betty and Donnarence personally and their situations are separate.  At the bottom of this post I will be including their bank account details accordingly and will be helping by making international donations easier with the ease of my Paypal Email ID  for donations, all those details will be at the bottom.  If you trust me enough and are personally moved to help please do.  Let’s begin with my super, super dear friend Catherine “Betty” Sanchez who was born with a unique blood disease, I’ll make all this as concise as I can.  I super as in duper love this girl even though we don’t get to see as much of each other as we should.

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CATHERINE “BETTY” SANCHEZ, Age 33.  In 2nd photo above is a group of my friends and myself.  We all sincerely wanted to pull together to do a kidney fund drive for Betty, shortly after that first meeting my grandfather was confined and I was asked by the family to focus on raising funds for him ‘coz it was also quite urgent.  Meeting with the same group again for Betty wasn’t easy to facilitate as everyone had previous commitments after that happened.  Betty had an ongoing T-Shirt drive bringing in supporting funds.

Betty’s medical condition has been battling a disease for half of her life and I’ll make this as concise as I can.  She needs a new kidney.  The situation began when she was 15 when she was diagnosed with henoch shonlein purpura a rare condition which is an inflammation of the blood vessels.  She grew up not being able to attend js proms, retreats, and high school graduations.  She underwent dialysis (an uncomfortable process where you go in to get your blood filtered) when she was 17, but at that age her kidney still recovered quickly, within 2 months, with much maintenance medication.  After recovering she went back to school.  At 18 it was recommended that she have a kidney transplant since dialysis doesn’t really cure, it just temporarily flushes toxins from the bloodstream. She then had her transplant in 2000, the kidney was a perfect match donated by her brother.  For 12 years Betty has been on immunosuppressant drugs, the side effects of which include a drastic weakening of the immune system.  I met Betty 3 years after her transplant in 2003 where she first began her job alongside me as a freelance digital artist at Unitel Productions, here she never had any serious symptoms, just the occasional cough or cold and we became friends/sisters in Christ for life.  In 2010 she worked as an in-house artist for Optima Digital, she resigned after 1 year and 1 month due to the workload and health concerns.  She went back to freelancing but just last March 2012 Betty fell ill and was hospitalized for elevated creatinine in her blood.  Creatinine is a toxin that is supposed to be flushed out by the body but with a dysfunctional kidney its levels escalate in the blood.  Frequent dialysis is costly and traumatic.  The doctor administered a huge dose of a strong immunosuppressant to Betty.  Her bill for that 1 week at the National Kidney Center was Php300,000.  Last April 15 Betty’s creatinine levels are recorded still way above normal and she was finally told that she needs a second transplant. … Read the rest

J & C Super Clean Solutions Brush Cleanser | MUFE Brush Cleanser Spray Dupe

I had a brush cleansing post about 2 months ago that tackled both spot cleansing and deep cleansing.  I mentioned that I already used up my favorite Make Up For Ever spray brush cleanser for spot cleansing after every job. Well I was invited to a launch about a week after that post went up and I am now so glad they introduced us to this product.

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J & C Super Clean Solutions is a brush spray cleanser with ethyl alcohol and spearmint oil that’s great for spot cleansing ( read how to spot cleanse brushes here ). It was created by Jenny Yrasuegui and Celine Gabriel-Lim who recognized the need for an affordable brush cleaner that smelled pleasantly fresh and mild, not too strong.

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I love that it smells like mint and that it works just as well as my Make Up For Ever Brush Cleanser does for spot cleansing, for about a third of the cost at Php395.00 (approx $9.40) per 120ml bottle. I’m excited because I hear that they may be developing a brush shampoo as well for deep cleansing to complement the brush spray cleanser.  J&C Super Clean solutions brush cleanser is available at BeautyAndMinerals.com and restocking this Friday at Sofa retail Lab in Rockwell. LIKE J&C Super Clean solutions on Facebook and email jenyrasuegui@gmail.com for more information… Read the rest

MAC Archie’s Girls Collection | Love Triangle Lands on March 2013

They’re almost here.  However, it will be increasingly hard to get a hold of MAC’s Archies Girls collection.  There’s actually an ongoing signup sheet in the U.S. that’s first come first serve. Funny thing is they’ve made availability so like we’re all fighting for Archie or something.  Sigh…I feel like I’d really like 1 or 2 things from this collection but don’t stand a chance.

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Anyhoo, to be honest I’m not very fond of the visual…it’s too rarr and not “camp” enough, but the makeup is awesome.  Archie humor is quite camp and it seems they missed it by a bit.  Now look who’s sourgraping, haw-haw.… Read the rest

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