Say It Isn’t So, Revlon.

I wanted my first post of the new year to be happy and positive, but this topic could not be swept aside. The makeup world is ablaze with all the talk regarding the Revlon lawsuit filed by former top scientist Alan Meyer, who claims the CEO Lorenzo Delpani is a racist, anti-Semitic bully. Because I don’t want to get too angry or militant while writing, and therefore not representing the statements accurately, here is an article from the New York Post:

The CEO of Revlon is a bigoted bully who hates “dirty” Americans, thinks Jews “stick together” and believes he can “smell” black people when they walk into a room, according to a new lawsuit.

The beauty company’s boss, Lorenzo Delpani, made the ugly comments after taking over in 2013, according to a discrimination suit filed by Revlon’s former top scientist, Alan Meyers, who says he was ostracized because of his Jewish heritage.

Delpani, a native of Italy, told Meyers he was “shocked” there weren’t more Jews at the company because the biggest shareholder is Ron Perelman, a prominent Jewish American, according to the suit.

“Jews stick together,” Delpani quipped. He also allegedly added that “thankfully,” Perelman “is not like that anymore.”

Delpani also said that he hates living among Americans, whom he called “small-minded” and “dirty,” and that he can’t wait to get back to a “real” country, according to court papers filed this week.

He later allegedly went on an “anti-American tirade” in which he said the US is getting closer to being like ISIS.

Meyers also claims Delpani made a racist comment after a meeting in South Africa, when he said he “could smell a black person when he entered a room.”

Meyers also claims Delpani made a racist comment after a meeting in South Africa, when he said he “could smell a black person when he entered a room.”

Meyers says Delpani had it out for him for having red-flagged safety issues in the production and manufacturing process.

Meyers claims he was concerned that several labs were not equipped to adequately test raw materials to satisfy Revlon’s safety standards.

Meyers, 56, who joined Revlon in 2010, was fired last month after he complained about the issues and his treatment, the lawsuit says.

Revlon spokeswoman Kiki Rees on Wednesday said Meyers was a disgruntled employee who did not perform up to company standards.

“Mr. Meyers repeatedly demonstrated critical lapses in judgment and failed to perform at the high standard we demand of our employees,” Rees said.

In the suit, Meyers claims Delpani’s tirades and tormenting eventually became outright bullying.

Meyers described one incident in October, when he allegedly was forced by Delpani to act as a human easel during a high-level meeting.

Meyers says he was instructed to hold a whiteboard, which covered his entire upper torso and head, for approximately 30 minutes.

He saw this as a demeaning gesture, he says, especially since he was supposed to be part of the leadership team.

Stress from the ordeal forced Meyers into the hospital with chest pains, the lawsuit says. He said he was fired on Dec. 10.

In his suit, he is demanding unspecified punitive and compensatory damages.Attorneys for

Meyers were unavailable Wednesday for comment.

Revlon CEO Delpani_Bad

Needless to say (but I’m going to say it anyway), this is disgraceful. If these claims are true, Revlon better be bracing itself for the major fallout that will ensue as a result. According Revlon’s website, the allegations are baseless and meritless. Ronald Pearlmann, their Chairman states:

“I know Lorenzo as an executive and as a person. These allegations are both absurd and offensive to me and those around me. I personally know his mind and his character. He is among the least bigoted or biased human I have ever known. He has my full support.”

Being a worldwide, famous, cosmetics brand for women of all ages and backgrounds, this is horrendous news [if true]. Will  spokeswomen like Halle Berry pull out of their contracts? Will stores pull product off of their shelves? Whether true or not, bad publicity always generates backlash immediately. From what I’ve see and heard online thus far proves it. Thousands of women have already thrown out all of the Revlon products they’ve previously purchased, many have gone back to stores to return newly-purchased makeup as a direct result of hearing this news, and many have vowed to never buy Revlon again. AND they test on animals, so that wipes out another group of women (if they weren’t already offended enough by their alleged treatment of humans).

If you’ve read my blog before, you’ll know that I’m big fan of Revlon’s Colorstay Foundation, to the point that I hoarded the whipped version in my shade because it was discontinued (click here to read). I also have several shades of their awesome lipsticks–what’s a makeup junkie to do? Should I wait to see if Delpani is guilty before tossing everything? Do I stop wearing all Revlon products in the meantime? Or should I just say screw it and throw everything in the trash now? I’m so conflicted.

Yes I know…first world problems. The world won’t end, wars won’t be won or lost over this, and it won’t be mentioned in our children’s history books. However, people’s lives will be affected–and I don’t mean on the superficial level (my level, admittedly); this could cost people their jobs, affecting the livelihoods of many. Let’s see what happens.

On the plus side, this will clear a nice amount of space on my shelf.

One Brand Face: Kat Von D

Sold exclusively at Sephora, Kat Von D’s eponymous makeup line is chock full of bestsellers. From primer to mascara, her products are long-lasting and heavy duty on coverage and color. The website states:

“Created by Kat Von D, tattoo artist, TV star, and owner of High Voltage Tattoo, this inspiring makeup collection exemplifies the fusion of glamorous, old Hollywood and edgy rock ‘n’ roll. Kat’s distinct style and flawlessly crafted face reveals that she is as masterful with a makeup brush as she is with a tattoo machine. Her passion for makeup and self-expression is inked into every product she creates, from the romantic, soulful designs to the rich, highly pigmented and long-lasting formulations. Exclusively at Sephora, Kat Von D’s one-of-a-kind beauty collection allows you to indulge your creativity and unleash your
inner artist.”

After so many claims of how full coverage her foundations and concealers are—enough to cover a tattoo—and how long-lasting all of her other products are as well, I decided to buy everything needed to “flawlessly craft” my own face and see if all of the declarations are true. Below is everything I bought (photos courtesy of sephora.com), in the order in which I applied them.

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First impression: I love that the Lock-It Tattoo Foundation is in a clear pump dispenser (I’m shade M62); you can see how much you have left and the pump is easier and more sanitary than pouring liquid onto your hand and placing your fingers all over the opening. Contact with skin=bacteria. No pump = easy to spill + unsanitary + lack of control. The formula is thick, highly pigmented and full coverage; a little goes a long way, so this is actually a good value at US$34.00 because I only had to use one pump. The same is true for the Lock-It Tattoo Concealer ($US25.00–I’m shade M26) when it comes to texture and coverage. Using these two products in conjunction definitely make for a flawless face in seconds. I used my Real Techniques Buffing Brush and Expert Face Brush, respectively, to apply them. If you need to sheer the products out for less coverage, a damp beauty blender will do the trick wonderfully (I have since tried this method and loved the more natural-looking results). I didn’t use a setting powder this go-round to see how the products last throughout the day. Next, using my Real Techniques Multipurpose Brush, I applied the Everlasting Blush in Essex, a matte cool rose that’s deep enough to show on my complexion. Just in time for this review, I was able to purchase the early release of the Immortal Lash 24-hour Mascara. I wasn’t crazy about the spiral wand at first, but the formula of the mascara and the spoolie really separated and lengthened my lashes. To finish everything, I applied Everlasting Love Liquid Lipstick in Mau5, a.k.a. BauHau5, a deep yet bright raspberry (US$19.00; The Painted Love Lipsticks come in the same colors and are the same price). Let’s see how it looked from the start of my day till the very end, no makeup touchups, photo filters or editing.

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Sitting under the infamously unflattering fluorescent office lighting at 8:00AM (left pic), I loved the way this makeup looked; this speaks volumes! Possibly a little heavy for everyday daytime wear (if a damp sponge/beauty blender isn’t used to sheer it out) the foundation looked amazing, covered all imperfections, was a perfect match for my complexion—and I’m sure many others, due to the large shade range—made me look more awake/brighter than I felt so early in the morning, and didn’t reflect a white cast from flash photography. My skin looked flawless and matte. The blush was just enough color (when applied with a light hand) to provide me with a healthy flush, and the mascara gave my lashes natural yet impactful definition. This liquid lipstick got more compliments than any other colored gloss/lipstick/lip stain I have ever worn in my life—no exaggeration (besides one of my reds)! By midday, my skin was starting to look dewy, borderline shiny, but everything was still in place; even my lips were still vibrant 3 cups of tea, a bowl of cereal, 4 glasses of water and a sandwich later. So far, the results were quite impressive, given that I didn’t use primer, set my foundation with powder or use setting spray. After a long day, all of the products endured humid conditions, my oily skin, long hours and a lot of sweating. There was a bit of foundation transfer, which was to be expected without setting it and being in steam room-like weather, and there was still a flush on my cheeks from the blush. The mascara didn’t flake, smudge or budge from my lashes and there was still a hint of color on my lips after breakfast, lunch, afternoon coffee and dinner!

Although the day started with visible makeup, it became more natural as the day progressed, and that made me happy since I was at work. Kat Von D definitely has a winning line of products for women that desire a fuller coverage (I was recovering from a breakout and no one could tell), a face that’s beat to the gods all day long (yes, please), trustworthy makeup for a special event, or a night on the town with a show-stopping face (again, yes), then this is the line for you. I have since created the same face with setting powder and the results were amazing, so I know I’ll be returning to these babies again and again. As of right now, this is my favorite high end product line with all hits and no misses. Taking it all off with the makeup removing wipes was a breeze and nothing made me break out anew. Thank you, Kat, for being your wonderfully tattooed self and for loving old Hollywood glam with edge, and needing to cover up your ink once in a while, and most of all, for finding the right people to make your vision come true and put it into such pretty packaging. I applaud you all.

Now we can forever give good face.

Standing on the Shoulders of Giants: An OMG Post

What did Plato say way back when? “Necessity is the mother of Invention?” Well, Invention, meet your other mothers: Laziness, Exasperation, and Convenience.

As you already know from previous posts (if you’re a regular The Vickylicious reader), I’ve been experimenting with different foundations since I used up a beloved jar of RCW. My latest drugstore excursion (of which there are many, thanks to having a 24-hour Duane Reade downstairs from my building) has me trying out L’Oréal Magic Nude Liquid Powder. I can tell from the colors that there isn’t going to be an exact match for me, so I buy two shades: Sun Beige 328 and Classic Tan 330. I pray to the foundation goddesses that this will be worth the investment and run home (upstairs) to my mirror.

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Liquid is right! I shake up the bottles and attempt to pour a little of each shade onto the back of my hand (my all-natural, homemade mixing palette) and I have to make sure to keep it steady so none of it will run down my arm. I can already foresee this process disrupting my morning routine, but I press on to see if the results will be worth it. Fingers crossed for tomorrow morning…

This morning… My, oh my, is it ever worth it!

This formula truly dries to a powdery smooth finish; the coverage is medium, yet buildable to a full and matte finish. I can’t stop touching my skin; it’s so soft and smooth! I just dab some concealerunder my eyes, a little blush on my cheeks, dress my lashes and go—NO setting powder needed. Oh yeah, remember I told you that I had a bad breakout recently? Well, you can’t tell with this lovely product.

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And look, I even took pics in bad office lighting so you could see its true effect and finish. The picture on the left was taken at 8:46AM and the picture on the right was taken at 3:16PM. Can you see how nothing at all has changed? Everything is still in place and just as fresh as the initial application. Again, this is without using primer, setting powder or spray. I’d say that these are pretty impressive results; possibly the best I’ve had thus far. (As always, no retouching, editing or filters are used on my photos.)

But, pray tell, what did I do about the pesky, messy process? Queue Plato and let’s rewind back to last night.

Once I saw how runny the Liquid Powder was, and knowing I would have to blend two shades of it every time–potentially creating twice the mess—I looked high and low in my kitchen for a container and stopped mid-search when a light bulb flickered in my brain. This formula is just as thin as the ones used for airbrush applications; why don’t I create my own? I went back downstairs to the drugstore in search of a travel-size spray bottle. SCORE!

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Upstairs at my sink, I poured the contents of both Liquid Powders into my new bottle.  Donning a shower cap to protect my hair, I shook up the bottle to blend the shades and product (as the directions dictated), then held my breath. Of course the spritz wasn’t as fine and light as an actual airbrush machine, but it definitely did the trick for a quick-fix home remedy. Using it this morning was simple, quick, and a lot less fuss and messiness. I blended it all in with my buffing brush.

Final answer: OMG. I am in love with this product. Lightweight with good coverage, it doesn’t oxidize and there’s little to no transfer. It doesn’t break up and I haven’t had to blot or touch up all day. I can already predict that this will take 2nd Place on my list of drugstore favorites, knocking Covergirl Stay Fabulous 3-in-1 to 3rd. Do I dare say it might become No. 1…?
Thank you, foundation goddesses. Thank you for this gift.

OH! And L’Oréal, I’d like to present to you the new [patent pending] Vickylicious shade: Suntan 329 in a travel-friendly spritzer. 😉

OMG or OHN: The Body Shop Oil-Free Foundation SPF 15

I finally used up one of my Revlon Color Stay Whipped Makeup (RCW) foundation jars from my hoarded collection, so what better time to write a foundation review? Yes, I’m itching to crack open another jar of my beloved (although discontinued) RCW, but as I said before, I’m an equal opportunity experimenter and there are many bottles/tubes/jars/compacts awaiting my brush.

After perusing my entire collection, I decided to revisit a bottle I bought several months ago and then completely forgot about: The Body Shop Oil-Free Foundation SPF 15 in 07 (For convenience, I will call it TBS). For your reference, I’m an NW35 in MAC, Toast in Revlon, and W7-Caramel Beige in L’Oreal True Match. I will test this foundation to see if the claims of the description hold true and to see how it lasts throughout the day. As in my last foundation review, no primer, setting powder or spray will be used in order to get true results, and as always, all of my photos will be unedited/un-retouched. Before the full review, below is the website’s description of this foundation line:

A range of innovative lightweight, oil free balancing foundation that provides medium to full coverage for a luxuriously smooth, matte, shine-free and healthy-looking finish. Dermatologically tested.

How to Use: Smooth evenly over a clean face using our Foundation Brush or Professional Makeup Sponge.

Overall Rating: 4.3/5 Stars (from 47 reviews)—85% would recommend it to a friend.

Before buying it ($23.00—now on sale for $5!), I had already noticed one immediate detractor: this line only comes in 5 shades. How limited! Luckily, there happened to be a shade for me. Please note that the only reason I hadn’t used this foundation until now is not because I doubted it in any way, but because this purchase was made around the time I did a serious Sephora haul (read: I still have more reviews coming for you) and truly just forgot about it. Plus, I got sidetracked when I found my discontinued RCW shade. I digress. On to the trial.

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As a reference point, take a look at my naked face on the left, fresh from a breakout. This is actually the perfect time to test a foundation’s coverage and longevity; so, here’s to looking on the bright side of stress acne! Now take a look at my face on the right, after applying one pump of TBS foundation with a Coastal Scents Bionic Buffing Brush. What is staring you in the face? A glaring white cast from the camera flash due to the SPF 15 in the formula—a major con in my book. However, since you don’t see that off camera, let’s try to get past that for the moment. Coverage is excellent and full, there’s no offensive scent. It applies with ease, has a matte finish and doesn’t feel heavy on the skin. So far, so good! Let’s see if it will hold up by the day’s end.

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No dice. Major makeup meltdown. Undereye concealer? Gone. Blush? Nowhere in sight. Shine? All over.  Scars? Visible. The formula has broken up due to oiliness and has transferred like crazy. Whatever is left is sliding all over my face. The only things that still look fresh from my morning routine are my “mascara’d” lashes, which coincidentally, are the only things that don’t rely on foundation. The only positive result is that the white cast from the camera flash is gone, thanks to my oils breaking down the foundation…

NONE of the claims on the website’s description hold true. Maybe they will with some help from setting powder and spray? On to Round 2.

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There’s less shine, thanks to setting powder and spray. Setting the foundation preserved some of the white cast flashback, however it didn’t prevent the formula from breaking down. By looking closer in the mirror, I noticed breakdown started around midday. On both days, I was tempted to blot and blend in the office bathroom because I felt like everyone would be looking at me strangely, but no one seemed to notice; I even received compliments the second night when I went to an event with my girlfriend. I think it was due to it being dark outside. Go figure.

Final answer on TBS Oil-Free Foundation SPF 15: OHN (Oh, hell no)!

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This is going straight to the trash bin to make room for better formulas. If you have tried this foundation and gotten different/better results, please let me know. I’d love compare notes!

Since this didn’t work out for me, stay tuned for another review soon. Until then, keep celebrating life!

OMG or OHN (Oh, Helllll No!)?: A Review

(Yes, there’s a lot of punctuation going on in my title.)

I really like Sephora’s own product line; from their lipsticks to their concealers, I’m a fan. So when the Sephora Collection Instant Radiance Foundation went on sale, it immediately went into my virtual shopping cart. I gave it a test run the day after it came in the mail, I was so excited. Want to see how this foundation stood up to the test? Then keepon reading! (This trial was done without primers, setting spray or powder in order to get an accurate feel for the product.)

First, let’s take a look at the naked face (please refrain from nasty comments, thank you) next to the face with freshly applied Instant Radiance Foundation, side by side, no filters no editing, no PhotoShopping—that would render the experiment pointless. Plus, I don’t use those things anyway.
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The coverage seems pretty natural, and I’d say the formula provides medium, buildable coverage with a semi-dewy finish. Although I prefer matte finishes, I like that this seems fresh and breathable looking. So now let’s see how it all looks after I apply Sephora Collection Perfecting Cover Concealer for my under eyes, and everything else I normally do.
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Much better, yet still natural (to me). My initial reaction to this foundation is that I like it, but I’m not in love with it. After a whole day of wear, I don’t like it one bit. Take a look at the oil slick my face has become:
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Mind you, I didn’t use a mattifying primer, a setting powder and/or spray—but I shouldn’t have to use all of that. There was a lot of transfer, and the formula broke down, visibly separating on the skin. I washedit ofimmediately after I took this picture.

Not wanting to give up hope, I tried this foundation again the next day, using setting powder AND spray. Did anything improve?
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As you can tell by the exasperated expression on my still greasy face, no, there was no improvement whatsoever. It was sliding off of my face, it oxidized and became darker, transferred like crazy, and the formula still broke apart. By the end of the day, the discoloration on my cheeks was starting to show as well. Tsk, tsk, tsk.

I highly recommend all oily/combination skin types to AVOID Sephora Collection Instant Radiance Foundation. Avoid it like it’s your pervy uncle during holiday family picture time.
Final verdict: Oh Hell No!
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Love Does a Hoarder Make

As many people may know, I am constantly on the hunt for the perfect foundation that checks off all of my personal boxes (as stated in my intro post). I do not discriminate on whether it’s drugstore or high-end, $5.00 or $55.00; perfection comes in many forms and I will not miss out just because I’m not an equal opportunity employer. Therefore, I must try them all. All!

Certain brands are only good for a couple of products; just recently are we coming across lines that have winners in almost every category. One such drugstore brand is Revlon. Every line in their lips, eyes, and face categories are full of winners, so much so that Revlon is hands down one of the best drugstore brands (if not the best) in the US, with L’Oreal a close 2nd (in my humble opinion, of course). Even their once lackluster mascaras are improving in quality; their Grow Luscious line is pretty fantastic. I digress.

Until last year, Revlon’s ColorStay Liquid Makeup was my favorite drugstore foundation. I loved her for many reasons: At a great retail price, she has a vast shade range, lasts almost all day, has minimal transfer, and comes in different formulas that cater to various skin types. Not only does this foundation offer buildable coverage, she leaves a breathable, natural look and feel on the skin.  I cheated on my love briefly with Cover Girl’s new 3-in-1 Stay Fabulous Foundation (primer, foundation and concealer in one product) and thought a divorce might be in order because CG 3-in-1 is quite the saucy minx. I hadn’t been able to completely swear off of her, and I think Revlon caught wind of my dalliance. One sunny day this past May, I was fondling CG 3-in-1 in the makeup aisle when something in my periphery nabbed my full attention: RC was back and better than ever! She got a whole new look and formula, one I knew I had to try. I told CG I’d be back later because something came up and I had to run. On May 22nd, 2013 Revlon ColorStay Whipped Crème Makeup launched and changed my life. I picked up my tried-and-true shade (Toast #410) and ran home so we could spend some time alone. I undressed her and felt her silky smoothness on my skin. She was neither heavy nor cakey; she was just right in every way. Blendable, buildable, sleek and luxurious, RC looked good and felt even better. I was truly, madly, deeply in love with her all over again!

Then she stabbed me in the back. She knew what she was doing and had it all planned. Once RC had sunk her teeth into me–deeply–she discontinued my shade. Searching over hill and dale for one year to find her, I thought all hopes of reuniting were lost. Then yesterday happened.

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On my way home from a bad day at work, I thought I’d cheer myself up by going to a place called Cosmetics Show, a discount beauty and tchotchke store. There wasn’t anything too impressive and it was actually kind of depressing in there, but a little voice in my head told me to press on. Thank the foundation gods that I did! There she was, Revlon ColorStay Whipped Crème Makeup #410 in all her splendor, jar upon jar of her just sitting there waiting for me to hold her in my arms. I stopped in my tracks, held my breath and tried to still my pounding heart. Sweat started trickling down the hollow of my back and my eyes glazed over. The little old sales lady asked me if I was alright in Spanish (because people always think I can speak Spanish) and grabbed my hand like only a caring abuelita could. I gathered myself and told her I was fine, but she interrupted me to let me know that everything Revlon was BOGO. I was floored. Trying to regain my composure for the second time, I cradled six glass jars and made for the cashier after proffering many thanks (in Spanish, natch). I practically skipped all the way home, my bad work day far behind me.

Needless to say, I’ll be going back to abuelita this weekend to buy out the entire inventory, regardless of my lack of storage space. Call me a hoarder all you want. I don’t care I don’t care I don’t care I don’t care!

I’m a hoarder with a purpose.

(And yes, I wore her today.)

Sneak Peek

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Thanks to a massive Sephora haul, I will be doing a lot of reviews in the near future. I’m a skin junkie; flawlessly done foundation and concealer are my joys.

When it comes to makeup, I focus on skin, lashes and lips. Although I love eye looks, I have yet to find products that stay put on my lids; these greasy eyelids of mine have vanquished every waterproof, smudge-proof, budge-proof, longwear claim on the market (and yes, I’ve tried a slew of primers as well). I will never give up my quest, however,  because I long to wear a winged eyeliner look that doesn’t turn me into a sad panda within one hour. Until that blessed day comes, I will keep trying to perfect my “skin, lips and lashes” looks.

Never fear, readers; you will see all of my hits–and major misses–documented here for your entertainment.

I wonder which bottle of magic I will pull out of my goody box first!  Stay tuned 🙂