Ellana Lip Gloss Review

I haven’t fully gotten into the mineral makeup trend yet, but I am for natural-ingredient cosmetics. I’ve replaced my old lip balms with ones that contain natural oils, and I’m a big fan of argan oil. It helps put my mind at ease, knowing that I’m skipping all the nasty chemicals whenever there’s a chance.

Last week, while I was in SM Megamall’s grocery store (the old one), I stumbled upon the makeshift bazaar just beyond the cashier counters. There was a tiny area devoted to non-food items, and that’s where I found Ellana Mineral Cosmetics.

Because of their reasonable prices and simple packaging, I decided to check their testers out. The lip palettes seem to have a good amount of coverage and are, obviously, convenient to lug around, but I didn’t like the color combinations much. I’d love to try the loose powder next, since I get such a nice, natural look from using that vs. the pressed variety. But that day, I settled on their lip gloss (PHP 150) instead.

The tubes look simple yet classy with their clean packaging (no box) and their gold lids. I definitely prefer that to those over-the-top labeling schemes where you can barely see the actual product inside.

The color I chose is called Snuggle, a vibrant raspberry-magenta with some slight shimmer.

On the tube

When I picked up a tube from the display, I noticed some oily residue leaking from the tube and onto my fingers. The salesperson assured me that the glosses tend to leak naturally, so I should keep the tube upright when possible. She also said that the leaking only happens in the beginning, so I shrugged it off and paid for my gloss.

Color Swatch on the Ellana website

Smeared on my hand, the color looks bright but comes on quite sheer. Personally, I prefer a lip gloss with high pigmentation/thick coverage. I’m talking about the kind that can pass off as an ultra creamy lipstick. But for the “everygirl”, sheer gloss is foolproof for a touch of color to the pout. It’s a no-brainer option and a quick way to alter your look, even if you don’t want to use a lot of makeup.

Almost perfect

However, I do have Cons for this:

First, the leaking never stopped. The tube made a mess whenever it got tilted. Formulation-wise, I’m happy that the gloss isn’t sticky on the mouth. Alas, that same runny factor has caused it to leak from the container and bleed when on the lips. You can’t over apply, or you stand to make a mess. Second, I’m not sure if perhaps the product just isn’t right for me (in Filipino: Hindi hiyang sa akin.), but I’ve been having a reaction to it. My lips get a bit itchy after a couple of minutes. Though I haven’t suffered a bad irritation, the itching has made me wary of using this.

Leaking away

After all the leaking though, what remained was a thickly pigmented paste that more resembled liquid lipstick. The newly concentrated color resulted in this:

A darker magenta color

Um, perhaps the leaking was a bid to improve it?

The Verdict: Personally, maybe the product just isn’t compatible with my skin. I wouldn’t swear off this brand just yet as I want to give mineral cosmetics a chance. Hopefully, my next purchase will yield better results.


Review: Etude House Nymph AURA Dear Darling Roll Roll Gloss

Phew! That was a mouthful. Korean brands tend to have such long names for their cosmetics!

Etude House has been in Philippine shores for some time now. I love the products and adore the cutesy-patootsy store interiors. One thing’s for sure: If I had been in high school at the time this brand was launched, my friends and I would’ve had a field day over all that pink. That said, Etude is definitely geared towards teens and high schoolers with all their shimmer and glitter makeup. (I spoke with a Korean friend who confirmed that mostly students are the target market of this brand back in her native Korea.) But adults are more than welcome to bedazzle themselves with some shimmer here or there. *wink*

Today, I’m doing a review of the Nyph AURA Dear Darling Roll Roll Gloss (shade #18) that I received from Etude House. It’s a sample size, but still totally worth talking about in this post!

Small 3-inch (7.5 cm) tube

As you can see, the tube is in a travel-friendly size. I like the simple design and the pearlized lavender lid. Truthful to its young demographic, the clear tube highlights the shimmery, light coral liquid gloss inside. Frankly, I’d prefer to buy this in this EXACT size as opposed to the original size (PHP278) they have in-store. The logic? Gloss is mostly used sparingly as a topper to add shine to bare or lipstick-enhanced mouth. I’ve never finished an entire tube of gloss, even when I apply with a heavy hand, so I don’t see the point in big containers. Cheaper, pocket-sized varieties sound waaay better to me. Also, I prefer a squeeze tube over a bottle with an applicator, since the little brush inside tends to gather color from my lipstick. (Read: Messy and gross.)

The slightest hint of pink on the lips

On the pucker, the gloss looks translucent. There’s barely a hint of the color and the shimmer is kept to a minimum. The formulation is neither too sticky nor too runny, perfect for a makeup newbie; a natural/low-maintenance look lover; or anyone who wants to top their lipstick with light gloss. (Another reason to stick with a tube container rather than a bottle-with-brush: A non-sticky formulation will also make a mess on the mouth of the bottle.) And I’m raving about the strawberry candy scent! It’s addictive and reminds me of strawberry Fruitella.

To sum it up, a small tube trumps a big bottle, and this gloss is PERFECT for everyday use.

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