Samples Roundup: July 2018 (Bite, Dior, Ren, Narciso Rodriguez, Tocca, Urban Decay)

For quick reference, WNR stands for Would Not Repurchase/Recommend and WR is Would Repurchase/Recommend.

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© Gil Segev 2018

  • Bite Multistick ($28*): Bite is far from the first company to realize that your lipstick can easily double as your blush; our grandmas were doing it years ago! I am not usually a fan of cream products for the face, though I will make exceptions if they are especially beautiful. What is unique about the Multistick is the variety of colours they come in, though far from comprehensive. They have a nice range of reds to berries, purples to browns. They’re missing some more special shades like oranges and primary colours which would make them more artist-friendly. I tested out the colour Cashew on my lips, cheeks, and eyes, and the first thing I noticed was how stiff and waxy the formula was. It is not emollient and has very little slip, which actually made it very eye-friendly. I kept expecting the product to crease on my eyes like any cream would, but it stayed smooth and set all day. That same stubbornness and resilience proved annoying on the lips, where the Multistick stuck but felt very dry. Both on the eyes and cheeks the colour faded considerably throughout the day. All in all, although I like the concept of a multitasking stick that does it all, I think the formula leaves much desired and the shade range is not perfect. Bite would be smart to add more colours or add some more butters and oils to the formula. Unless you really want a particular shade as a cream shadow, or you need a decent (but expensive) colour corrector, I don’t see this being a necessity. WNR
  • Christian Dior Hydra Life Glow Better Fresh Jelly Mask ($79*): I have no idea why it took me so long to try this, but holy guacamole, this is good! This three minute mask works quickly to refine skin texture and add radiance. It has AHAs from berries and citrus fruits, and apricot seeds to gently exfoliate. I love the refreshing jelly texture and the smell is divine. This is minor but the outer carton is made from sustainable cardboard and natural inks, so it’s eco-conscious too. Excited to purchase this! WR
  • Ren Keep Young And Beautiful Instant Firming Beauty Shot ($67*): I am so over brands calling serums by any name other than just that. Beauty Shot? Seriously? Pretentious name aside, this is a hydrating serum, and a good one at that. I was absolutely convinced this was packed full of dimethicone because of how smooth it goes on, but instead this relatively short ingredient list features two types of Hyaluronan to hydrate, firm, and boost elasticity. It also has a bit of rose oil and extract, as well as red algae and a type of fungus. It is free of petrochemicals, sulfate detergents, silicones, synthetic colors, animal ingredients and parabens. I found this gives a nice hydration boost to the skin, and it did feel a bit firming. I would recommend this to combination complexions, and of course pair it with a good moisturizer to seal the deal. WR
  • Narciso Rodriguez L’Absolu ($144*): This is one of the brands I’ve never really explored because it just screams “grandma!” I did give this fragrance two shots, and both times I just wasn’t that impressed. First was the issue of longevity, it wafts away to a skin-scent too quickly for the cost. Then there was the general consensus from everyone who smelled it on me that it’s just not right. Whatever the notes, they’re not exactly my cup of tea – kind of reminds me of an old principal or librarian or something. WNR
  • Bite Agave Lip Balm ($20*): If you’ve ever tried Vaseline for your lips then you’ll know what this feels like. Thick, tacky, more of a night treatment than a daytime product. It is a cleaner formula than Vaseline, but not something I would want to use regularly. WNR
  • Tocca Cleopatra ($94*): This fragrance is so sad! Despite the beautiful bottle and the inspiring name, it absolutely falls flat on its face. A totally generic fruity-floral that disperses in a matter of minutes, not even hours. What a let down! I’m willing to give a few more scents from this line a try only because I really do like the packaging, but by all means this disappointed. WNR
  • Urban Decay All Nighter Liquid Foundation ($49*): Alright, I’ll begin my review by saying that this foundation does exactly what it claims to. It gives full, long-lasting matte coverage, conveniently packaged in an edgy bottle for a reasonable price. Despite being so full coverage, it doesn’t feel heavy or drying, nor does it oxidize. I didn’t find the need to powder throughout the day, because it does an excellent job of regulating oil. By all definitions, a successful product. Now, having said all of that, I am not a matte foundation guy by any means, and would much rather a radiant or even satin finish. Additionally, there was minor creasing on my forehead by the end of the day. I suppose if Urban Decay came out with a “luminous” All Nighter I would give it a shot, but at this point I don’t want nor need it. WNR

     Have you tried any of these products? What have you been loving this season?


*Prices true at time of writing.


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