Popular products that didn’t work for me :(

Hey folks!

Hope your having a great week so far! Every now and then we all get sucked into buying certain things because everyone and their momma are talking about it! So today I will share 3 things I got with a lot of excitement only to be disappointed 😦 boo! I am sure I can come up with a similar list of things again sometime in the future so let this be a sort of part 1 😀 Lets start off with something everyone loves..including celebs..I’ m talking about those cutesy looking EOS lip balms!

EOS lip blam
EOS lip blam

EOS Lip Balm

yup! these are cute. I like the whole design aspect of the product. But it fails, atleast for me in the function aspect. I don’t find these to be moisturizing for my lips. Maybe I have the driest lips on the planet ..I dunno! If I put this on my lips alone for too long I feel like my lips get drier than they were to begin with! However, these do work well as a sort of base / primer before applying lipstick. So I usually use it as a lip primer these days and not as a chap stick. I am not a big fan of the scent of the one I have either. I think its called fruit punch or summer punch.. not sure. Has anyone else had similar issues with this?

NYC Sunny Bronzer
NYC Sunny Bronzer

NYC Sunny Smooth Skin Bronzer

Everyone on youtube loves to use this to contour their cheek area. Now, I have yet to master the art of contouring but I know enough to declare this as a no no for me. It runs a bit too orangish brown on my skintone 😦 If the color works for you I think its a fabulous product for the price tag of 2 to 3$. Recently I learnt that its better to contour with powders which are more taupe/ grey since that is the color of the natural shadows on your face. Any suggestions for a good contour powder (inexpensive one) for someone learning the ropes when it comes to contouring and highlighting?

Monistat Anti Chafing gel
Monistat Anti Chafing gel

Monistat Anti Chafing gel

I was really really hoping this would work out for me. The internet is ablaze with stories of people using this 6$ product in place of the 30$ smashbox primer since they have identical ingredients. I have to say that I was impressed with this! It made my foundation go on like a dream! However, after 2 days of using this my skin didn’t look that great. Something was amiss..it looked dull and I have a feeling it clogged my pores. After a  couple of clay mask sessions my skin was back to normal but I was too scared to try this out again. I know plenty of people who use this without any issues so I am kinda bummed it didn’t work for me.  Have you guys tried this? Suggestions for any non silicone based primers is also welcome 🙂

Are there any hyped up products that didn’t work for you?

Until next time..ciao!!

Some of my favorite earrings for Fall/Winter !

Hey everyone!

SO this is it..we are on the last leg of summer! I was de cluttering my jewelry stash the other day and I thought hey why not blog about some of my favorites! After all I write about all things beauty and these fit the bill perfectly!! As I was reorganizing and purging through my collection it struck me that I always tend to wear long more elaborate earrings during the fall and winter months..with them getting chunkier and more elaborate the closer it is to winter! I dunno about you guys but the reason I do this is because once you start layering up the only jewelry you can really use as a ‘statement piece’ is earrings 🙂

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This  blue and gold disc earrings were an absolute favorite of mine last year! I picked these up on a trip to India and they have held up quite well despite a lot of man handling from my side! I like to pair my earrings with my scarfs since I mostly stick to black outer coats/jackets. I used to pair these guys with a nice rich blue scarf very often!

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These are smaller in size and if I remember correctly I got these from Old Navy. They are quite well made and pretty for the price (I think they were 5-6 $)! I love that these are the clasp type and not the hook ones. I have lost so many hook type earrings over the years 😦 that I have a tiny bag of single earrings missing a pair!

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I have never worn this pair! I completely forgot that I had these with me 🙂 I will definitely be busting these out this fall. This pair is kind of big and a little heavy which is probably why it hasn’t received much love from moi! Don’t you hate it when you pick up a lovely pair of earrings and then don’t wear them since they are heavy.

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This was another pair which received a lot of love last year! However, I think wore this more in the winter than during fall. This was also purchased at the same place as the blue and gold disc type earrings.

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This mother of pearl earrings were a birthday gift from a friend maybe 5 years ago! I didn’t quite like it back then but now I really love these. They are really light weight and so pretty too!

I hope to add some new pieces to my collection soon! Any suggestions for good online jewelry stores ?

foto friday! 08/22/2014

Hello folks!

I hope everyone has been having a great summer! I am trying to make the most of what is left of summer 🙂 2 weeks back I visited southern Maine and had an awesome time at the beaches there. For some reason I love lighthouses! We visited the Cape Neddick Lighthouse in York. It was a really nice sunny day and I was able to capture a lovely picture of this lighthouse !

Cape Neddick Lighthouse
Cape Neddick Lighthouse

Where all did you guys chill out this summer? Enjoy the rest of the summer everyone!!

Until next time..ciao!!

Maybelline Fit me shine free foundation

Hola everyone!!

So late last year sometime during the cold winter months, I was browsing through the beauty aisles of Target and this little stick foundation caught my eye. I haven’t used a stick foundation product in ages, the last time I tried one was for attending some event and I think that foundation stick belonged to my mom 🙂  I was all excited to try it out, but once I bought it home and read about it online I found out that this is for oily skin folks (I have dry skin)oops! But I still thought I will give it a try because in case it worked, it would be a very easy product to travel with!

Maybelline Fit me foundation
Maybelline Fit me foundation

When I tried it in the winter when my skin was drier than usual I hated it! So if you have really really dry skin, stay away from this! I decided to give this foundation a try this summer since I have slightly less dry skin issues and the humidity levels are quite high as well during this time. The stick consists of 2 parts; an inner core which is supposed to be an anti shine core which helps keep oiliness at bay and the the outer foundation part as seen in the picture below.

Stick foundation with inner anti shine core
Stick foundation with inner anti shine core
  • First off, I found picking the right shade a big challenge! It was extremely hard to pick a shade when the stick had 2 portions each a different shade. I picked up the shade 235 which is not the right shade for me but I can still make it work as long as its a light to medium coverage look. The shade 235 has slight pink undertones but also has a slight neutral undertone which is probably why I am able to make it work to some extent.
  • When I swatch the foundation it feels creamy, but on the face its an entirely different story. It goes on smoothly, but is extremely difficult to spread on the skin. They recommend using your fingertips to apply this but like I said it was very difficult to spread it evenly.
  • The foundation sets to a powdery finish which I don’t particularly enjoy. However, I do notice that it look less powdery within 10 to 15 minutes post application. Whatever your skin type, make sure you moisturize well before applying this because this product will cling to all your dry patches!
  • Now this foundation claims to keep you shine free but sadly I didn’t see that happen. Although, I have dry skin I do get oily around my T zone in the summer months and with this foundation that happened just 4 hours after application. Hence, I am wondering if this foundation will actually help oily skin folks!
swatch
swatch

Now, the only good thing I can think of for this product is the fact it is easy to carry around  and its budget friendly if it works for you! This might work out for someone with normal skin and no oily T zone. Have any of you guys tried this out? If so what do you think?

Until next time..ciao!!

 

Valentia Even Glow Vitamin C Serum

Hey everyone!

So I have been stuck with the same products for my daily skincare routine for a while now and was happy to jazz things up a bit when I got the opportunity to try this Vitamin C serum from Valentia Skin Care. Its been a while since I have used a serum of any kind and this one got me all excited about serums again 🙂 This serum as per the description on the box is 98% made from natural ingredients..sounds good huh? I have been trying this serum for well over a week now and so far my skin has been quite happy with it!

Valentia Skincare Vitamin C even glow serum
Valentia Skincare Vitamin C even glow serum

So as per the instructions, prior to use you need to shake the bottle and using the dropper apply a small amount to the face and neck decollete area daily. I notice that I require just 2 drops for my face and 1 drop for the neck and judging by the amount that is still left after 1.5 weeks of daily use, I am guessing this bottle will last me a while!

When you open the bottle and get a drop of the serum on your fingertips, you are immediately hit with the scent of oranges! and no this doesn’t have that chemical orange smell..it is more fresh in scent and very mild and lingers just for a tiny second after application which I like! The serum has an orange color and absorbs really quickly into the skin upon application. It does feel a tad bit tacky immediately after application but it goes away a minute or 2 later. In the picture below you can see how 1 drop of this serum looks like.

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So the serum promises to even out your skin tone, increase your glow and radiance and also help reduce wrinkles and fine lines by helping boost collagen production. I can say that so far I have noticed an evened out skin tone and a glow after 1.5 weeks of daily use. Since I don’t have any visible wrinkles and fine lines yet (touch wood) I can’t attest for the other claims. I have a small patch of sun damaged skin on my chest and using this serum I have seen some improvement in terms of evening out my skin tone there. However, I’ll have to use this for a longer period of time to see how well it works 🙂

One of the reasons why I was all excited about trying this out is because of what I saw in the ingredient list. If you take a look at the ingredient list below you will see all sorts of good ingredients in this serum, not just Vitamin C!

The ingredient list
The ingredient list

I was excited to see green tea extract, aloe, hyaluronic acid, rose hip seed oil, organic sea buck thorn oil in addition to Vitamin C. Also, the Vitamin C is present as Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate which is a very stable form of Ascorbic Acid (Vit C) and hence you don’t have to worry about the serum losing its potency after opening the bottle.

Now, this serum does not replace your moisturizer. They do suggest you apply moisturizer after using the serum. I have dry skin so I do need to moisturize. The serum is not oily or greasy so it will be great for most skin types!

The serum is available at Amazon in case you are interested in trying it out http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00HJD8NLY. The company has a website too in case you want more information on the product 🙂 http://www.valentiaskincare.com

Hope you guys are having a great week! Until next time…ciao!!

*This item was sent to me for review however the opinions expressed here are my own.

Looks featuring the LORAC 3D Liquid Lustre set

Hey everyone!

So if you guys saw my review on the LORAC 3D liquid lustre set (HERE) yesterday I had promised to feature some looks using them….so here it is!! As I said so in the review yesterday, the liquid lustre does pack a punch in the shimmer/glitter sector so these are perfect for a night out 🙂

Eye Look 1 featuring Liquid Lustre in Diamond

Diamond
Diamond

In my review post, I had mentioned how I like to apply the liquid lustre on the eyelid first and then apply eyeshadow on top of it. So here I applied the liquid lustre in diamond followed by a lovely purple matte eyeshadow from MAC all over the lid. The shade is Black Tulip and I think it was a limited edition shade but quite dupable.

Eye look 2 featuring liquid lustre in Topaz

Topaz
Topaz

In this look I applied Topaz all over the lid and applied a sparkling blue eyeshadow from an old limited edition Dior travel palette on the outer corner. Here too, any dark blue eyeshadow will do the same 🙂

Eye look 3 featuring liquid lustre in Amethyst

Amethyst
Amethyst

This is also a very easy look to achieve! I have Amethyst all over my lid with Moderato from the Balm Jovi Palette in the outer corner. I really love the color of Amethyst and the shimmer is slightly toned down compared to the other shades. Of course with all of these liquid lustres you can build up or sheer down the intensity. All the looks here are with just a single drop of the liquid lustre per eyelid!

Eye look 4 featuring liquid lustre in Platinum

Platinum
Platinum

Platinum applies quite opaque and here I have paired it up with a sparkling black shadow(from the same Dior palette)  in the outer V area of the lid. As you can see the black gets transformed into a softer darkish blue when applied on top of platinum. Platinum is perfect for a shimmery smokey eye !!

Hope you enjoyed these! Have a great rest of the week everyone!

Until next time …ciao!

The LORAC 3D Liquid Lustre

Hey everyone!

I am so excited to write today’s post 🙂 I recently ordered some stuff from the beauty.com website and I got a set of the LORAC 3D Liquid lustre for free !! If I remember correctly, this set was released during the holidays and I guess they are trying to clear stock. I also noticed that its still available on the LORAC website for 18 bucks which is a steal in my opinion since a single bottle of this retails for around that much!!

 

The Lorac 3D liquid lustre set
The Lorac 3D liquid lustre set, from left to right:Platinum, Amethyst,Topaz and Diamond

This set comes with 4 different shades: Diamond which is the white shimmer one retails as a single and the other 3 are limited edition shades. Platinum is a grey metallic shade, Amethyst is a lovely deep lavender shade and topaz which is a coppery bronze shade.

The liquid lustre vial consists of very fine shimmer which is suspended in a mixing medium. As you can see from the pic above when the bottles are at rest the pigment and the medium separate out. Prior to use, you have to shake the bottle vigorously to mix the pigment and the medium together and then using the dropper you can dab a little onto to your finger tips and apply on your lids! I have tried to use a brush but I couldn’t get an even application so I would say using your fingers is the way to go.

The Dropper
The Dropper

Now, this is an awesome product to try if you like shimmer of any kind! I have been very happy with the way these perform so far. They do not fade or crease even after 12 hours of wear which is the longest period of time I wore them. According to LORAC, these liquid shadows can be applied over eyeshadow or worn alone on the eyes and even cheeks. I have worn these alone and they are awesome especially Topaz, Amethyst and Platinum since they apply quite opaque. I also prefer to apply these first and they apply eyeshadow on top rather than the other way around as suggested by LORAC.

Once applied it stays put but it can move around a bit if you try to blend using a brush. So in case you want to do some blending after applying these its best to be gentle.

Swatches
Swatches

The swatches above are with just a single drop from the dropper after mixing everything vigorously. As you can see from the above swatches, the shade diamond is quite sheer and hence this is more suitable as an eyeshadow topper rather than being used alone on the lids.  Also you might have noticed that the shade platinum which is grey blue gives the best opaque application. These are quite versatile and you can easily build up the intensity if you want to an almost  metal foil like look on the lids 🙂

Now, these come in a glass bottle and they are liquid so they are not very travel friendly in my opinion. Also, if you don’t like shimmer of any kind these are not for you! I find these too intense to wear during the day but they are perfect for a night out 🙂

Overall, this is a fun product to have in your collection!!

I will post some eye looks I have done using these..so look out for that tomorrow folks!! Now available HERE !

Until next time …ciao!!

Aloe Vera and your skin

Hello everyone!

These days a lot of skincare products and even haircare products list aloe vera in their ingredient lists. Its usually listed as  Aloe vera extract/Aloe Barbadensis leaf extract/ aloe vera gel. In case you want to know more about this magical plant everyone loves to have in their products, my post today might just be your cup of tea :).

(Image source: wikimedia Commons)

Aloe Vera is a cactus plant that belongs to the Liliaceae family.There are more than 300 species of this plant but the most common ones are Aloe barbadensis Miller and Aloe aborescens. Various cosmetic and medical products are made from the mucilaginous tissue (the gooey stuff)  present in the center of the Aloe vera leaf . (If you’ve ever had the opportunity to break a fleshy leaf of aloe into 2, you know what I am talking about). So whats so special about this gel like stuff which oozes out of the leaf? It is infact a complex mix of various types of naturally occuring chemicals : Amino acids, anthraquinones, enzymes, lignin, minerals, mono- and polysaccharides, salicylic acid, saponins, sterols, and vitamins. These components individually and together are responsible for some of the great properties of aloe vera.

So what are the magical powers of Aloe Vera?

  • Moisturizing and anti ageing effect: Some of the polysaccharides (mucopolysaccharides) found in aloe vera gel help bind moisture into the skin. Aloe Vera  stimulates fibroblast cells which boosts the collagen production process and therefore has been proven to help fight wrinkles. The amino acids present in the gel  also soften hardened skin cells thereby acting as a skin softener. The small amounts of zinc present in aloe gel acts as an astringent thereby tightening pores. Now you know why a lot of skin care companies love Aloe 🙂
  • Protection against radiation damage:  Aloe vera gel has been reported to have a protective effect against radiation damage to the skin. However to get maximum benefits it is recommended that 100% pure aloe gel be used for this purpose. The polysaccharides, mannose-6-phosphate, and complex anthraquinones together are responsible for this property of aloe vera.
  • Wound healing: As stated earlier, collagen synthesis is boosted when aloe vera gel is applied on the skin. Collagen production plays an important role in would healing as well. Aloe gel not only increased collagen content of the wound but also increases the degree of collagen cross linking (which helps wound healing). Due to this,  accelerated wound contraction or healing takes place.
  • Anti inflammatory :Aloe gel has been identified as beneficial in the treatment of psoriasis and atopic dermatitis, due to their anti-inflammatory properties.

There are lots of other important application of aloe vera especially in medicinal products but I thought I’d just stick with how awesome it is for the skin 🙂 In case you would like to read up more on Aloe Vera take a look at the references listed below!

Until next time..ciao!!

References

  1. Journal of Drugs in Dermatology (article here)
  2. Indian Journal of Dermatology (here)
  3. Pharmacognosy Reviews (here)
  4. Journal of Indian Society of Periodontology (here)

Makeup by One Direction! A pre launch sneak peak into the Looks collection!


Hey everyone!

A couple of days ago, I posted (HERE) about how One Diection is coming out with limited edition makeup in the USA . Well, today I am going to show you what sort of goodies are there in one of the limited edition tins (warning: this is a long post!)! I was sent the Take me Home collection by Markwins International.

'Take me Home' from the looks collection
‘Take me Home’ from the looks collection
  • I really like the fact that the contents are housed in a tin. I am a sucker for tins :). However, I should warn you that the pic of the boys is only there on the outer sleeve. Once you remove it, the tin has a brick print on it. I am personally okay with that but I can see some fans of One direction being disappointed about it.
inside the tin
inside the tin
  • As you can see, the tin contains quite a few items! On one side, they give you an idea about the kind of looks you can create with the products in the tin. Out of the 3 tins available, this is the one leaning more towards neutral in color choices. Lets take a look at the contents more closely!

Lipstick in the shade Last First Kiss

  • As you can see from the picture below, the lipstick is a very pretty rosy pink. It is very natural looking  and for me this is a my lips but better kind of shade.
  • The lipstick applied quite sheer and has a balm or lip butter kind of texture. I do find it to be very build able and it feels good on the lips. I find that it has reasonable lasting power and does not dry out my lips which is a huge plus!
Lipstick in Last First Kiss
Lipstick in Last First Kiss
  • The product came damaged with the lipstick stuck to the top cap. Other than that no negatives here! I like this lipstick!

Lipgloss in the shade Kiss you

  • This lipgloss looks really bright orange in the tube 🙂 but surprisingly it looks quite pretty on the lips. It does not apply bright orange, it looks almost peachy orange on my lips.
  • There is a ton of glitter in this lipgloss which I am not a fan of unfortunately :(. The gloss is non tacky, but slightly gritty due to the big glitter chunks.
Lipgloss in the shade Kiss You
Lipgloss in the shade Kiss You
  • This lip gloss is supposed to glow in UV light. I find that quite fascinating and can’t wait to see if it works!
  • The applicator is a sponge tip one which is more paddle like than doe foot.
  • Overall, I am not a fan of this gloss because of the glitter but the formula is great!

Nail Polish in the shade Live while your young

  • This is more of a glitter top coat. I like the look of this nail polish with multi color gold glitter bits in it. I have not yet tried this on my nails since I got the makeup tin just after I got my nails done! So, I’ll try feature this soon on a foto friday post 🙂
Nail polish: Live While We're Young
Nail polish: Live While We’re Young

Volumizing Mascara in black shade called Little Black Dress

  • The mascara is supposed to be volumizing but I personally did not find it adding any additional volume to my lashes. However, it did lengthen my lashes and also hold up the curls.
  • I always look for lengthening more than volume when picking up a mascara so this works for me. However, it is not the greatest mascara I’ve used. It does clump my lashes a teeny tiny bit.
Little Black Dress Mascara
Little Black Dress Mascara

Body/Eye Crayon called ‘I wish’

  • This is a chubby pencil in a nice chocolate brown shade. I t can be used both on the eyes as well as the body.
  • The crayon glides very effortlessly and has a smooth texture and so I find it perfect for use near the eyes.
Eye/Body crayon in the shade I wish
Eye/Body crayon in the shade I wish
  • Overall, I am quite happy with this crayon!

4+1 Eyeshadow Palette in Nude Shades

  • The eyeshadow palette in this kit is neutral. It comes with 4 powder shadows and 1 cream shadow. The shades are as follows: ‘Back for you’- cream color shade, ‘Change my Mind’ – peachy shimmer, ‘C’mon C’mon- soft taupe, ‘Little Things’- smoky brown and the cream shadow in golden glitter.
The eyeshadow Palette
The eyeshadow Palette
  • I have to say that I am quite impressed with the soft texture of these shadows. They are not chalky and blend well too.
  • The pigmentation is also impressive. The gold glitter cream shadow is a bit chunky but has a smooth consistency as well.
  • Overall, I was not expecting the eyeshadows to have such good texture and quality and so..I am pleasantly surprised 🙂

Body Art Stencils

  • Lastly the kit comes with some stencils which can used for drawing on your arm or anywhere using the eye/body crayon.
Stencils in the kit
Stencils in the kit

If you haven’t fallen asleep reading this long post yet 😉 , here is an eye look done using the contents in this kit! As you can see, the mascara has done a good job with lengthening my lashes. However they do look a bit clumpy too. For this look I first put the peachy shimmer shade called ‘Change my Mind’ all over the lid. I then went ahead and put the taupe shade called ‘C’mon C’mon  in my crease followed by the brown shade called ‘Little Things’ in the outer V. I used the matte cream shade called ‘Back for you’ on my brow bone.

I used the body crayon to line the lashline and I topped it up with the cream shadow in gold glitter using an angled liner brush. I think I used 4 coats of the mascara to get this effect.

Eye look with the kit contents
Eye look with the kit contents

So now the big question…how much is this kit and is it worth it? I am not completely sure about the price..I think the 3 kits are going to retail at 29$. They are going to released at Macy’s first on the 11th of August. To get more details about the release check out the Facebook page HERE.

I am sure a die hard fan of One direction will enjoy this kit. The eyeshadow shades in this kit are very basic and most of us might have similar shades in our collection already. The lipstick shade is nice but again very dupable. If you don’t mind the glitter, the lipgloss is nice (I have to test out if it really glows in UV light!). Everything else in the kit is also nice but again nothing fantastic that makes me want to run out and buy it. I think you can skip this kit unless your looking for a gift for a girl just starting out with makeup or your a die hard fan of One direction!

Until next time..ciao!!

*I was sent this item for review but all the opinions expressed here are my own. 

Nair Spray away hair remover with Moroccan Argan Oil

Hey folks!

I am one of those people who can get really lazy about shaving/waxing! And when an important event is lurking around the corner I jump at any quick fix I can find 🙂 I have been using Veet and Nair hair removal creams for my emergency hair removing needs for several years now. A couple of weeks back I saw this new spray hair remover on a trip to CVS and decided to try it out since it was almost time for the hair removal chore I detest 😛

Nair spray away hair remover
Nair spray away hair remover

The instructions state that this should be used on dry skin. After shaking the can vigorously, you can spray this onto your skin in an even fashion. I noticed that, most of the hair starts to fall out within 4 minutes which is the minimum recommended time period. They state that you should no keep it on for longer than 10 minutes. In my case, after 4 minutes I just washed it all away, the spray foam and hair in the shower. Here are a couple of things I like about this product:

  •  It smells way more pleasant than the average hair removing cream. It has a nice citrus and floral scent which is very mild. Usually with hair removal creams the dominant smell is that of rotten eggs,so this was a nice change from that!!
  • The biggest plus about this product is the ease of use. The can still sprays stuff when you hold it upside down and that is very helpful when doing your legs. Considering that applying this on my legs took no more than 3 minutes followed by a wait time of 4 minutes, I think its very useful as a quick fix solution to your hairy leg problems.
  • My skin felt really smooth and moisturized after using this spray. They do state that this has Moroccan Argan oil, but its buried somewhere towards the end in the ingredient list which can be viewed HERE. This also has mineral oil in it and I feel the smoothness is more due to the mineral oil in the product rather than Argan oil.

Now lets discuss some of the things I am not so happy about!

  • It costs roughly 9 to 14 $ depending on where you plan to buy it. I paid 14 $ for it at CVS (they always rip you off!). I used it once and the can is almost half empty already! So I guess I can get another use at the most out of this can. So for 2 uses, the can is quite expensive!!
  • The foam that comes out, forms a really thick layer on your skin and if you move too much it will slide off your skin. So you might have to stand still for a while in the shower while the foam gets to work 🙂

Overall, this is a good thing to have in your emergency beauty kit! I do find it quite pricey considering I can get only 2 uses out of it. However, since I usually epilate or wax and use these sort of products only for emergencies I might still buy it after I am done with this can.

Have any of you tried this new product from Nair? What are your thoughts?

Until next time…ciao!!