Thursday, April 21, 2011

ecotools Travel Brushes

Save the environment plus space in your cosmetic bag.

When I went on a mini trip in January, I realized I packed extremely light on makeup but had to have a whole separate (heavy) bag just for brushes. Before spring break and a few other trips, I realized travel brushes would be a good investment and better traveling solution.

I did a little research on the "best travel brushes" a lot of people like the MAC mini brushes (limited edition, usually available for the holiday season),and the Shu Uemura Compact brush set (no longer available at Sephora or Shu Uemura, priced around $50?) With either brand, I'd only receive 4-5 brushes for $40-50.

I changed my search to "best CHEAP travel brushes" the winner definitely seemed to be ecotools travel brushes. Nine brushes for $20; I had to give it a try.

I have used these brushes on three trips, I actually used them as my regular everyday brushes for about a month as well.


5 Piece Mineral Brush Set
($12.00)

Mineral Powder
This should be your all-over face brush. (Possibly blush?) I don't wear powder. But I do use this for a highlight brush and it works great.

Eyeshading Brush
This really reminds me of MAC 217, not an identical dupe, obviously. But does get the job done nicely. I mainly use it for crease color and blending, ocasionally highlighting.

Concealer Brush
Again, reminds me of MAC 192, distributes product nicely, blends well.

Baby Kabuki Brush
Because it's so little, it does a lot more time and effort.  If you used this for your all-over face powder/foundation it will take a lot longer than a normal size one.  Luckily, I just use this for bronzer and get rid of harsh lines from blush.

Cosmetic Bag
I wasn't impressed with the bag. It's almost too small just for these 4 brushes. I like to be able to dig around in a big bag and grab the I'm looking for rather than dumping them all out/grabbing one by one until I can find the one I'm after.


6 Piece Eye Brush Set
($8.00)

Large Eye Brush
Picks up product well and distributes evenly. I used this for all-over lid color and then the highlight color, as well.

Angled Crease Brush
I'm really confused by this brush (in fact I ending up selling it on eBay) It's too big to get the crease color placed nicely. (I use the Eyeshading Brush from the other set for crease color instead.)

Petite Eye Shading Brush
This brush is good for your inner corners and to fix mascara and eyeliner mess ups.

Smudge Brush
This is nearly identical to the Petite Eye Shading Brush, in all shape, size, and the brush hairs.  Usually, when I hear smudge brush I think of a sponge, not actual brush hairs.  I couldn't really figure out what to do with this brush (another one sold on eBay.)

Highlighting Brush
This brush has the same shape as the Eyeshading Brush from the other kit. However, it's a little smaller and worse quality.

Travel Case with Mirror
Again, I'm not crazy about the case because it only holds these 5 brushes.  Maybe for on-the-go (keeping this brush set and case in your purse), it's good.  But actually travel, it's annoying to have so many bags/cases for brushes.


"earth friendly beauty"
Save the Planet
Cruelty-Free Hair
Natural & Recycled Materials

Both kits were missing a few brushes that I use every day and still have to bring along the full size, (and I'm searching for travel size ones!):


Angled Blush Brush - The Mineral Brush could work as the blush brush, but I'm a little lazy and don't want to have to hold the brush a certain way to get the same effect as the angled brush.

Angled Brow/Eyeliner Brush - This kit doesn't have any type of eyeliner brush, which I found pretty weird since powder and gel liners are becoming more popular than just pencil liners.

Brow Brushes - This kit isn't very brow-friendly at all, there's not one brush.  I know most of us have untamed, wild brows and need an angled brush, spoolie, and/or eyebrow/eyelash comb.  Maybe I should just find a separate travel brow kit.

Rating Scale 
(NEW! click here)
Product: 4/5
Value: 5/5
Packaging: 4/5
Overall: 4/5

The main point: The kits (all 9 brushes and 2 cases for only $20) are well worth the value and quality.  Some of the brushes are too similar and/or serve no purpose or not the correct one it is labeled for.  The kits have some room for improvement and there's most likely even better ones out there.  The 5 Piece Mineral Brush Set is definitely worth looking into, the 6 Piece Eye Brush needs a little bit of tweaking by ecotools,

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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

March Favorites

"Favorites" posts/videos discuss the products (and other misc things) you loved for that month. The products can either be purchased that month or (old) "rediscovered" items. Favorites are published at the end of the current month or at the beginning of the following month."



China Glaze Cracked Concrete Polish - After my obsession with Black Shatter, I wanted another color. This is the same idea, the same crackle affect, just a different color. Someone informed me my nails looked like granite counter tops; I guess that's a good description. It looks best with pastel polishes.

eos Hand-cream (Nourish) - I got this product only because I was sucked into paid advertising. In the Cosmopolitan March magazine, this product was mentioned in many beauty articles, it can fix hair fly-aways, and clean up under-eye make-up. I was most impressed with the cute, practical packaging. So easy to use and carry in your purse. It smells extremely nice too, light and fresh. It's not a miracle hand cream, but I don't suffer from extremely dry skin to mind.

Essie Topless & Barefoot Polish - A great natural shade. This was my first Essie polish. The first coat was quite streaky (not sure if that's normal for the brand?) but the second coat covered it. It would be the perfect nude for very pale somewhat pink skin tones.

MAC Margin Blush - A peachy golden color, it's very natural looking with a hint of shimmer.

MAC Select Moisturecover Concealer - I was on the hunt for a moisturizing concealer to take care of red, dry, splotchy patches around my nose. This did the trick. It's much more moisturizing than the other two MAC concealers I have tried (Studio Finish & Select Cover-up.) The wand application makes the process a lot fast than having to worry with a brush.

MAC Soiree Polish - (Cham-Pale Collection) Such a light, pretty bronze color. Covered in one coat.. impressive! Would be great for summer.

Neosporin Overnight Renewal Lip Therapy - I suffer from extremely dry, flaky lips. I'm always searching for an HG product. This is by no means it, but it does soothe my lips before bed. (I haven't noticed amazing results in 3 days as promised.) It smells like Fruity Pebbles cereal!

OPI Teenage Dream Polish - I think this has made my favorites three months in a row? I keep reaching for it. Such a fun, girly, color. Loaded with glitter. (Would be great for prom!..depending on your dress.)

Organix Morroccan Argan Oil Conditioner - I picked up just the conditioner because I have so many other treatments and shampoos I need to finish up first, but I'm definitely going to purchase everything from the rest of the line. It smells amazing, it's pretty thick so it actually feels like it's moisturizing.

Sephora Glass Nail File - Never again will I purchase the basic emery board. I was tired of going through emery boards like there's no tomorrow. Plus my nails were getting somewhat brittle and always had a rough edge at the top. Not with this file - it makes your nail extremely smooth and doesn't wear and tear them down.

Wet 'n' Wild Mega Protein Nourishing Mascara - I found this at Big Lots for right under $2. (Meaning, I'm sure it's discontinued.) I'm trying to step away from my favorite mascara and give others a try. It doesn't give the false lash effect. It's great for work or school when you still want the natural look. It's a soft mascara, it doesn't make your lashes all hard and clumpy like every other one I've picked up in my life does. I'm not sure if it really "nourishes" but I feel like it does, mental thing. I'm sure.

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