First Use of the Tatcha Kissu Lip Mask

This Tatcha Kissu Lip mask has been on my list to try for a while now and I decided now was the time. Now we all know, I love my lip products. And lip masks are one of my absolute favorite ones. I know, they surprisingly rank higher than lipstick on my personal list. let the gasps commence.

While it is easy to think of lip masks in the winter where icy winds casus daily chapping, I often find them of great use in the summer. My lips don’t chap in the summer in the same way they chap in the winter. I know that sounds a little weird. In the winter if not taken care of my lips will get dry and crack in painful chapping. In the summer time though, my lips will get dry spots on them from too much time in the sun rather then the same chapping that they get in the winter.

My only theory on this is that with the heating on the air is over all drier inside as well as the exterior exposure and in the summer time the air where I live is so humid that it is never quite the level of dryness that chaps my lips. I’m sure there is a more logical or medical based explanation. but that is my working theory. I’d be happy to be corrected, but it does mean that I deal with my lip health, shall we say, differently.

the product was all the way to the top of the glass

First off I use a lip scrub in the summer time. I don’t bother in the winter because all my lips need then is a moisture bomb, not a scrub. My current lip scrub of choice is the Hanalei Sugar Lip Scrub. It works well and it smells like lemonade. Which I rather enjoy. It also scrubs without overly drying my lips more since it has it’s own oil inside.

The Lip scrub I need to pair with a lip mask.

From all descriptions the Tatcha lip mask sounded like it would be perfect for the summer. It is a Jelly lip mask, which I hoped would feel lighter and it has squalene inside which all of my skin tends to react well to using. According to the Tatcha website this mask is…

Elegant, non-sticky jelly melts into skin and layers on to comfort, hydrate, and lock in moisture. Plumps the look of fine lines and wrinkles for a supple, firm look. Restores essential moisture to flaky, parched lips for a smooth, soft texture.

The three key ingredients are Japanese Peach Extract: A traditional Japanese beauty secret used centuries ago to help repair damaged lips. Works with orange peel extract to revitalize and calm irritation, Japanese Camellia Oil: Rich in oleic acid, vitamins, and nourishing Omegas 3, 6, and 9, this featherweight oil has been prized in Asia for centuries for its superb ability to help seal in moisture, and Squalane: All-natural squalane works instantly to richly moisturize and improve the skin barrier, locking in moisture and minimizing dryness all day. The weightless emollient absorbs easily without clogging pores or leaving behind an oily residue.

Tatcha

The jar is a clear glass jar that shows off the delicate pink mask inside. The jar comes with a little golden spatula. I think that this might come in more useful as I delve deeper into the jar. Although it is fine now. It is very easy to scoop too much mask with the spatula though. You really need to just surface glide across the top to get enough product. If using a finger instead of the spatula it is a bare tap of the surface to get enough product on your finger tip.

First applied

When I first opened the jar I thought there was a plastic sheet on the top (incase you notice the divots. There isn’t one. The product goes all the way up to the top. The lid is tight fitting enough that I am not worried about it drying out at all. And honestly I love that it is completely full. There are no air pockets making the jar half empty. It is completely full of product.

I also like that very little product is actually needed to apply on the lips. It means this little jar is going to last me a long time, even with continuous use. Which my budget likes. I don’t mind spending more on good products, but I am always happy when they last a while. And even happier when they work well. Although to be honest, this mask was $28 which isn’t a terribly outrageous price (Laniege lip masks are about $25 and those tend to be my standard jarred lip masks – smaller tubes of lip masks are cheaper of course, but in size the Laneige is the closest to the Tatcha in product amount that I regularly use)

After 20 minutes (The lighting difference is natural sunlight vs. artificial)

So, how does it work?

Well the full review will have to wait until a month of use has passed but for a first use, this went really well. I used my lip scrub to remove the flaky bits and then rinsed and dried my lips, applying the mask over it (I didn’t want the il from the lip scrub affecting perception). The Tatcha Kissu lip mask is slightly sticky to the touch. when applied and spread on the lips it feels a little sticky at first, almost like a lip gloss. Thee is almost no scent to it. There is a light scent that might be peachy, but it is gone so fast it is hard to identify.

I am perfectly fine with a lip mask having no scent as a scented lip mask can be a bit much. As the lips are located right under the nose, any scent, if lingering, can become a bit much. while the light scent was there when I opened the jar, it was gone by the time I applied it to my lips and not noticeable at all as I wore it.

The mask was a little lip gloss sticky when applied and it had a lip gloss shine to it. The stickiness faded after a minute or two and after twenty minutes I took the second picture of my lips. The shine faded and while my lips felt hydrated it no longer felt as though I was wearing anything on them.

Now I did this fires test in the day mostly because i wanted to see what was happening, however I did wear the mask to bed at night. I applied it, had my usual half hour of reading before sleep and then went to sleep. I was worried that because the mask disappeared so quickly that it wouldn’t nourish through the night. I needn’t have worried. The next morning my lips were soft and nourished and completely hydrated. While I am sure that there will be greater effects after a month of use, One (okay technically two times) of use makes me very hopeful that this will be the perfect summer lip mask for me. It is light weight, with no over bearing scent and it appears to hydrate well. As a first use, this went fantastically well.

Samples I am so looking forward to trying out.

And when I ordered, I received three samples of other Tatcha products I’ve wanted to try out, so even though the point was to find a fantastic summer weight lip mask (which I think I might have done) I also get to try out a couple of products that were on my to try list before I place another order. I know, a lot of companies send samples with their orders so that isn’t shocking.

However i am tickled that when they showed the list of samples available and I got to choose three there were actually three available on the list that were on my personal to try list and now I get to try them before I purchase in the full sized. (they were the Liquid Silk Canvas Primer, the Silk Powder and The Rice Polish (Deep), in case you were wondering. So often when you get to check out the samples aren’t ones you wanted to try or hadn’t tried, at least for me anyway so that was just an extra bonus. All in all I was happy with my purchase and can’t wait to see how this Tatcha Kissu Lip Mask performs over the next thirty days.

Tatcha

Testing the Avant Hydra Replenish Lip Balm

I will be one hundred percent honest. I did not want to like the Avant Hydra Replenish Lip balm. I know, you should never go into a product with a set opinion. But to be honest my desire to not like this product was due to the price.

Avant is always a pricy brand. I am always surprised by how much their products cost. I’ve received several products from the brand in subscription boxes over the years. Sometimes I like them, sometimes I don’t, but I almost always feel that they are overpriced. When this lip balm came in I was expecting it to be expensive, but the cost of it was stunning.

The Avant Hydra Replenish Lip Balm for “For satin-smooth, hydrated lips, this soothing balm aim to leave lips irresistibly soft, youthful and nourished.” retails for $77. That’s right, it is a $77 lip balm.

Inside this lip balm is Hyaluronic Acid and Cupuacu Butter…

Hyaluronic Acid aims to penetrate deeply into the lips to hydrate and instantly help improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles around the mouth.

Cupuacu is rich in vitamins B1, B2, B3, fatty and amino acids. Being from the cocoa family, Cupuacu aims to improve the tone and texture of your lips whilst protecting them against damage caused by free radicals.

Avant

So there are more skincare beneficial items than in you $1.99 tube of lip balm. But is is worth $77? Truthfully, No. I am never going to be able to say any lip balm is worth $77. Because it just isn’t. I know it is odd to say that but something about charging $77 for a lip balm offends me somewhere deep in my soul. I can justify the cost of a lot of things, but not a lip balm.

light formula that applies well

However I will say that this is a really good lip balm. It is smoothing, it is hydrating and it is just an all round good lip balm. It glides on smoothly and absorbs well, leaving soft healthy lips behind. while my lips are prone to drying out and the occasional cracking, I don’t have severe problems with my lips. If I regularly apply any lip balm I am good.

If you routinely have issues with your lips drying out then maybe you might find the cost justified. It is a good product that works well. If it were in the $30 range it would actually become a staple in my lip care routine. I love the slight almond/vanilla scent and I love the way it applies and makes my lips feel.

I also know that while I have a single lip balm in my house I will not be able to convince myself to purchase this at full price. It is fabulous, but not $77 fabulous. So I will use up every last drop and enjoy this lip balm while I can. I just know I will never purchase the Avant Hydra Replenish Lip Balm on my own.

Get More From A Face Cleanser And Spa-like Massage

Dr. Lipp Original Nipple Balm

Dr. Lipp Original Nipple Balm is one of those products that I always think of as a sort of super intense lip balm. I think part of that is because the brand is Dr. Lipp and the other part is because I have always only used sample sized tubes of this nipple balm.

According to the website…

Original Nipple Balm: For Dry Skin, Luscious Lips and Glossy Bits

Famous for its gloriously thick, ultra-long lasting & instant hydrating effect! Historically used as a nipple balm, Dr.Lipp’s luxurious formula will rebalance, hydrate, nourish, soothe, plump and even help heal all types of dry, sore, cracked, itchy or sensitive skin anywhere. One product, one ingredient, 100’s of uses. Where you apply it is your business…

The full size is 15 ml and retails for $14.50. The size I always seem to pick up is 3 ml. It also has a lip style applicator whereas the full size looks more like a tube of hand cream and has a flat top. Personally I like the shape of the small applicator.

It is perfectly shaped to apply product to the lips and it limits the amount of product that comes out. Plus as it is plastic, you can wipe it off when you are done and it is all neat and tidy.

This is not a light weight product. When you put it on it has a vaseline like quality to it. The product is thick and it is present. It is not vaseline however. And I personally live the ingredient list. Want to hear it?

Ingredients: Lanolin.

Yup, that’s it. One ingredient. Now lanolin is derived from sheep so it is not vegan, however the sheep are not killed to get the lanolin. Some people who use lanolin do develop a wool sensitivity and if you are allergic to wool you should avoid it. I like that it is a natural product with no petroleum based products included.

I don’t use it a lot, but it is one of those products that is excellent for dry chapped lips. What I like to do is apply it, and let it sit for about an hour and then wipe off anything that remains on my lips after that hour. If I am going to be in a cold and possibly windy environment I will put it on before leaving the house and just leave it on my lips, because it also protects against chapping.

bare lips on the left, product applied on the right.

I just can’t leave it on my lips for long periods of time without wanting to wipe it off. The longer I wear it the more I find myself rubbing my lips. Which sort of helps rub it in, but if my lip are really rough it can lead me to start picking at them. Worn alone though it is a very shiny lip gloss. More nourishing than most lip glosses, but still looking like a lip gloss.

With the Dr. Lipps, I can apply it, wait an hour, rub it in a little bit and then wipe off the excess and I feel a distinct softening of the dry lips. It is a really good product. Especially before applying a lip product. It is nice to have that nourishment under the lips. I get a lot of use out of the sample size in the winter. Although if I am going out, I will use it as part of my pre makeup ritual. I apply this, wait then wipe it off, then apply a lip plumper, wait and wipe the lip plumper off and then o my makeup. I find it really helps give me smooth lips for lipstick application.

While the full size is $14.50 I don’t ever see myself buying the full size as I really only use it on my lips. They do sell a six pack of full lippie sized tubes (8 ml) for $38 which I would probably pick up instead of the one large one. To be honest, the six pack would last me the entire year if I kept it all. The last time I purchased it, I kept two and gave the others to family members.

And when I went on their website I found they now make a tinted version as well. the link is for the three pack which appears to be all of the tints they make. They are sold separately. I find the tinted versions interesting and out of curiosity I may end up picking one of those up to try. Because of the weighty feel of the lip product I wipe it off before apply lipstick. But I have been known to wear heavy lip products if I like the color and it wears well, so I suspect I would either really like or really hate the tinted versions of this. I have no idea which way that would go. I’ll be placing the tinted version on my to try list and will find out.

For now I am happy with the untinted version and while this is a sample, I have purchased the lippie sized before and would again even if i wouldn’t pick up the large squeeze tube. I simply don’t find myself using it anywhere but on the lips. That’s really the only reason.


RawGeneration.com!

Is Manna Kadar’s Lip Bliss Lip Mask Bliss for my lips?

I love lip masks.  Actually I love most lip products.  Which may account for why I love lip masks so much.  Many of my favorite lipsticks can leave dry and damaged lips in their wake.  I try to counterbalance this with lip balms (Huge fan of Jersey Shore Cosmetics Lip Balm). And Lip scrubs (currently liking the Milk Makeup lip Scrub), lip masks (all-time favorite the Agave+ overnight lip mask from Bite Beauty).

I tend to wear a lip mask to bed almost every night and I also try to remember to put them on when I am doing my face masks.  I know that does sound a bit excessive but at this time of year my lips naturally dry out and my love of liquid lipsticks doesn’t help matters.

So when I received the Manna Kadar Lip Bliss Lip mask in my November Allure Beauty Box I was happy to have another lip mask to try out.  I’ve tried quite a few Manna Kadar products before, often with mixed results.  I am quite fond of their blush formula but only mildly enthused by their lip products.  So I had my fingers crossed when trying this mask out. So what should I expect from the Manna Kadar Lip Bliss Lip Mask?

It’s time to give your lips a little spa time. Manna Kadar Lip Bliss Lip Mask contains emollients to give dry lips a little hydration, and vitamins to aid in the appearance of softer, smoother looking lips. Not only is Lip Bliss Lip Mask a soothing and hydrating balm, If you have dry cuticles, a little dab can help moisturize dry nail beds.

Key Benefits: Moisturizing formula, Antioxidants for ultimate soothing, Helps prevent chapped and flaky lips, Emollients for super hydration

A nice shine, but nothing sunk in to moisturize

Okay so now fully apprised of what the product is, I opened it.  The applicator is a nice wand which is quite nice.  Most other masks I tend to use my finger for applying.  It is really a nice change to have an actual applicator.

The scent is sweet and lightly fruity.  It isn’t overpowering but it is noticeable, especially as the lips are located right under the nose.  I found the scent quite pleasing. 

My first test of the lip mask was during the day.  I applied a coat and let it sit while I worked at my desk.  It applies like lip gloss, not only because of the applicator, but because of the formula.  It sat on my lips like a lip gloss.

Time passed, and still it sat. 

Several hours later I wiped the product off, thinking I might have applied too much and the excess was sitting on top of my lips.  There was no noticeable change to my lips. 

So I thought that maybe I hadn’t let it sit long enough.  Thus began the overnight test.  I applied the Manna Kadar Lip Bliss lip mask just before bed and let it st on my lips overnight.

And it sat on my lips overnight.  In the morning I wiped it off and my lips were the same.  The dry spots were the same as before.  So I tried this for a week, every night.

There was no change.  This product sits on the lips like a lip gloss.  I can see that sort of formula keeping the lips from becoming further chapped by putting a protective coating over them, but no more so than an ordinary lip gloss. And as per the suggestions, I tried it on my nails. I wouldn’t recommend it. The product sat on the skin there too and inot only did it not help my cuticles, but it got everywhere.

I will continue to use the Manna Kadar Lip Bliss Lip Mask over the lip formulas I have that tend to be a little drying but I won’t be using it as a standalone lip mask and when it runs out, I won’t be repurchasing it.  For me this lip mask was a complete failure.


Sparitual

So, Is Algenist a Genius? Testing two products from their Genius line

The Algenist Ultimate Anti Aging Eye Cream and Liquid Collagen lip from the Genius line

Recently I ended up with two Algenist products in my testing line up, both from different sources, but both part of the Algernist Genius line.  The first was the Algenist Genius Ultimate Anti-aging eye cream (retail $74, although I got it on sale.).  The reason I ended up purchasing it was a friendly recommendation given to me by a stranger when I was out shopping for eye cream. I was having trouble deciding on a product and the helpful stranger suggested this one.  I took the recommendation and after a trip to the cashier I took it home.

Buy 7mL GENIUS Cream for $15 and get $15 off a full size + free shipping. No Code Required.

The second product came to me via Scentbird and no, it isn’t a perfume.  Scentbird also offers various skincare and makeup items that you can add to your queue in lieu of a perfume that month.  In March, I decided to forgo my monthly perfume trial and try the option and from their line up I chose the Algenist Genius Liquid Collagen lip to try out. It looked interesting and we all know I am totally down for anything designed to make my lipstick look better. So I received this product instead of perfume from Scentbird this month. I didn’t review the Scentbird subscription box right away as I wanted to have time to try the products.

So with two separate products from the same line ready for testing, I decided I needed to find out what made them genius.

Or at least why they thought of themselves as such.

So to the product page my darlings!

As far as I can tell it is called the genius line because it is born from biotechnology using super fantastic algae and is safe and clean, hypoallergenic and formulated for all skin types. It is also free of a whole bunch of not so good for you things including coal tar, mineral oil and petroleums.  There is actually a long list of what they don’t use, which made me quite happy to see. As far as I can tell though those guidelines apply to all of their products and not just the genius line.

So we look at the products.  Unfortunately, all things are not equal.  I liked the eye cream and did not like the lip treatment.  Let’s go with the best first though and start with the eye cream.

According to its product page, the Algenist Ultimate Anti-Aging Eye cream…

This vegan eye cream delivers unparalleled benefits through a combination of naturally sourced and sustainably produced Alguronic Acid and Microalgae Oil. Alguronic Acid helps increase skin’s smoothness, and Microalgae Oil works to replenish the eye contour moisture while improving the skin’s luminosity. The formula also includes a plant-based collagen and a Persian silk tree extract to visibly firm and lift the upper eyelid, nourish and smooth skin around the delicate eye area. 

I have to say, I am a big fan of this eye cream. It is a plain, white cream with almost no scent other then ‘I’m a cream’ scent. It is thicker than I expected and I worried that it might clog my pores as some of the thicker eye creams have been known to do.  However, it did not.  I’ve been using this product for a month now and I have had no problems with clogged pores.  The eye cream does make the skin feel super soft and hydrated.  I think this is partially because of the shea butter included rather high up on the ingredients list. I like that it is thick enough that I can put it on my eyelids as directed without worrying about it traveling down and stinging my eyes. 

There was no eye stinging with this product. 

Where this product really shines though, is during allergy season.  As the pollen count rises, the puffiness of my under eyes increases.  The trees began their annual pollen parade shortly before I started using this eye cream and they were a bit on the puffy side when I started.  I noticed a reduction in the puffiness after a few days of use even though the pollen count was steadily on the rise.

My only issue with this product is that it is in a small jar and it is a thick cream.  I know I also like that it is a thick cream, but here’s the deal. It is thick enough that if you rub your finger across the top to collect some product to use, you get only a little on your finger as it just presses down. You have to sort of scoop a little bit up with your nail.in order to use it. Personally I don’t like sticking my fingers into face creams for fear of accidentally contaminating the entire thing.

I ended up putting one of the scoops from an old mask to use with this product as I was getting product under my nails with it and it was going to waste.  This is not a product I want to waste.  Also it is a small jar and my little plastic scoop was a little too big for it so I had to be careful not to scoop out too much.  A tiny little scoop/spoon included with this product would make it just about perfect.

On the other hand, the Liquid Collagen lip is far from perfect. First, let’s see what it is supposed to do.

applicator

A vegan lip treatment to help deliver fuller, smoother-looking lips in 10 days*. This unique dual phase lip treatment suspends botanical lip enhancers and hundreds of beads of Microalgae Oil in collagen water. The unique formula visibly smooth lips and improve lip definition for a more youthful appearance. Formulated with plant collagen, and Algenist’s naturally sourced and sustainably produced Alguronic Acid. Apply with soothing and cooling ceramic tip applicator.

dispensed

Okay, the packaging is nice and really well thought out.  The plastic applicator is shaped perfectly and when you twist the top to dispense the product, the absolute perfect amount of product comes out.  Seriously it is just enough to coat the lips and no more. The packaging is perfectly well thought out.

And it looks pretty.

It is comprised of golden drops of oil suspended in a gel.  You hold it up to the light and it almost glows.

But as we all know, looks aren’t everything.

So I applied the product to my lips.  It has no scent and it glides on like a lip gloss. As it was on my lips, I did taste the product. It is a very bizarre taste.  I am going to describe this to the best of my ability, but I am not sure how good that is.  So, the taste. 

Okay imagine you go to the dentist and have a lot of Novocain as they are working on your mouth.  They finish, wipe off your lips and send you home.  Eventually the drugs wear off and you can take out the pads they shoved in your mouth to make you look like a chipmunk (and not bite your cheek without realizing it). Now think of the first time you lick your lips after that. You know that post Novocain taste your lips have? The slight non-taste that is still a taste?

That’s what this tastes like.

And yes I had to think about that for a while and it is still the best description I could come up with. Now you know why I don’t write poetry.

Okay so moving past the taste.  At first, my lips just felt wet.  After a couple of minutes it started to absorb and my lips felt warm. Really warm. Not run for the wash cloth warm, more like you put a few too many sliced jalapenos in your sandwich warm.

And yes, I put jalapenos in my grilled cheese. They are yummy.

The warmth died down faster than jalapeno juice though, so I was relieved.  Also about the time my lips stopped feeling hot, when I touched them they felt dry to the touch even though I still thought they were wet. I will say they looked a little smoother and I was able to easily apply lipstick over them.  I used a lipstick that was almost at the end of its life in case it contaminated it, but I still applied lipstick over it with no problems.  In fact it looked really good.

I know you’re thinking, Mimsy, you said you didn’t like it, what’s the deal?

Okay here’s the deal.  The one time use was fine.  It worked exactly as it was supposed to. But it is a product that is supposed to work over time.  According to the application directions you are supposed to apply it once in the am and once in the pm and you should see results in ten days. That is the recommended usage.

So I used as directed. 

I applied it both am and pm. The heat I felt that first day did not occur with repeat applications. I don’t know if my lips adjusted or what, but there was no further heat.  There was chapping.  By day three the corners of my lips were red and raw and I had to discontinue use.  If I realized it was the lip product causing the chapping I would have discontinued use earlier.  I thought it was just the wind so I applied more Chapstick.

It was not the wind and I apologize for blaming it.  I also apologize for telling the Chapstick it was not doing its job.  It was, I was just torpedoing it without realizing it. Please don’t hold it against me dear Chapstick, as I will need you in both the upcoming summer sun and the cold winter to follow. I’m sorry I was so rude.

So there you have it. It’s a Genius family where one child seems to have sucked all the brains out of the other one. The liquid collagen is still pretty and perhaps I had some sort of reaction to one of the ingredients (a case I will be investigating), and someone else would have better luck with it than me. I can however say, it is definitely not a repurchase for me. I might try using it again on a one time basis if I need to look good going out (although heaven only knows when I will next leave my house). But I will not use it routinely and I won’t repurchase. 

The Ultimate Anti-aging eye cream however is fantastic and definitely something I will be repurchasing. For now I am less than halfway through the jar and still have at least one other eye cream in the line up to test. But it still goes on the list.

I also am going to sit down with as complete an ingredients list as I can to see if I just had an allergic reaction and if I did, what I had the reaction to. I find this very important as I saw many crossovers from the eye cream and lip treatment when I looked through them. I find this important generally because I like to know if I am allergic to something, but also because I had so much success with the eye cream that I want to try out other cream products in this line to see if they are comparable. To be honest, after I make my comparison ingredients list, this may be a case where I get samples of other products in the line to try before committing to a full sized version, just in case. every product line has some flaws and I’m hoping that for me the lip treatment was it. So not only will I be repurchasing the eye cream but I will more than likely be trying out more products from the Genius line and hoping it is a family of virtuosos, with just one errant child.


Algenist