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I’ll have to apologize. I have no idea why it’s taken me so long to write this up. I’ve had lots of new things from e.l.f. on hand for a while, and I know a lot of people have been wanting to see if they were any good. Some are entirely new products. Others are new shades of old products Because this is so long, I’ll break it up into a few different reviews: old products that are new for me, old products with new colors, and new products.
Older Products, New For Me
e.l.f. Blending Sponge
Everyone seems to be nuts about the Beauty Blender these days. One of my cousins uses the Beauty Blender and raves about it. She’s let me play with hers a bit, though I’m loathe to apply makeup with someone else’s makeup sponge. (No thanks.) I’ve only just kinda played with it on my hand a bit. Personally, I’ve always preferred a brush to a sponge for several reasons. One, I feel like I can keep a brush cleaner than a sponge. Two, I’m just used to applying things with a brush, and I can’t for the life of me seem to get down the whole sponge application thing, so keep that in mind while reading this.
I know Sephora will probably let me take back a Beauty Blender if I hate it, but the initial idea was that I could try out one of these first because I’m cheap. I’ve used cheap Dollar Tree wedges in the past to apply makeup, which is as close as I’ll get to sponge application, but I tend to toss them after. I wanted something bigger that would last a while and fit in my hand better, and supposedly the Beauty Blender and its knockoffs are designed to be that way. And I don’t know… I suppose I was expecting something magical to happen with THIS sponge that I haven’t seen in previous sponges.
So when I heard that e.l.f. had one of their own, I couldn’t resist. One of the reasons I review so many e.l.f. products is that it’s cheap enough for me to buy up a bunch of it and play. I can’t really do that as much with higher end items, which is why those reviews are often done on samples or things I’ve been sent in subscription boxes or things that companies send me to try out and review. So that said, I tossed this into my shopping bag on e.l.f.’s website and got it in a haul to try out.
I hated it. I absolutely hated it.
I’m not exaggerating here, either. I used it once, didn’t even complete my makeup application, and then threw it in the garbage can and finished up with my brush. I really, really hated it. I would have burned it if I’d had the time that particular day.
It’s a lot harder than the Beauty Blender, first off, but I don’t necessarily see that as a bad thing. I do wonder about the maneuverability of something so squishy. I tried it dry first, because if you wet it, you can’t insta-dry it. It drank more of my foundation than ended up on my face. I tried it damp. It still drank more of my foundation than ended up on my face. Coverage was… well, not good. It was incredibly thin, and it didn’t seem to matter if I was stippling, pressing into my skin, or using blending strokes. The tip was nice for reaching those little crevices on the side of my nose, but I have a foundation brush that does the same thing without being so much damn work. And cleaning… Does this thing even come clean? At all?
e.l.f has some really good products out there. Don’t get me wrong. This was not one of my favorites. Of course, now I feel like (to be fair) I need to just bite the bullet and try out a Beauty Blender and review that, but I wouldn’t recommend anyone holding their breath on that. I’m still very much anti-sponge, so I’d be going in biased regardless.
e.l.f. Daily Hydration Moisturizer
e.l.f. recently came out with a skincare line of their own, and so far I’ve tried their serum and their night cream. Neither one is the best product I’ve ever tried, but they were impressive for their $12 price tag. I look forward to eventually trying all of the products in their skin care line, which I think leaves me with the eye cream and cleansers, but I already have a nice stockpile to get through on both, and it’s going to be hard ripping me away from my current favorites in those categories, which I promise to get to in another post. I think e.l.f. definitely has their work cut out for them wooing me away with their skin care line.
The daily hydration moisturizer has a price tag of $8 for 2.53 oz, making it less expensive than the serum and night cream. It also recently won an Allure Best of Beauty Award, so they’re definitely getting off on the right foot here.
My first thought was regarding the ingredients. This is sulfate-free and paraben-free, though not fragrance-free as Allure claims. (It’s listed right in the ingredients.) I don’t have a huge problem with fragrance in my skin care, but I prefer that it not be there. There’s jojoba oil, shea butter, aloe, vitamin E and cucumber. There are some antioxidants, but nothing hardcore.
What I love… The packaging is really pretty. I like the soothing mint color and the soft, squeezy tube despite the pump, which I will get to in a bit. The formula itself goes on silky and smooth. It’s very lightweight, and my skin absorbs it nicely. I found it very hydrating, and I think it makes a great daytime moisturizer. It certainly lasts all day, and while I hate comparing it to a Clinique product, it did remind me a lot of their Moisture Surge Extended Thirst Relief that I got in my October Birchbox and loved. So if you want something lightweight that will last all day, this is a good product for very little money.
What I miss… First thing’s first, there’s no SPF in this, and I like for a daytime moisturizer to have sunscreen. Yes, I can wear one separately or in a different product. Yes, I’ve loved plenty of moisturizers that didn’t have a sunscreen. I just wish it was there. There are also no heavy lifting anti-agers, which I prefer to use at night, but again… It’d just be nice if it was there.
What I hate… If you’ve used a lot of e.l.f. products, you’re probably familiar with the pump they use on a few of them. I positively HATE these pumps with the burning rage of a thousand suns, but I put up with them because I love the product. This product features that pump. At first, I wasn’t able to get anything out of the tube, and then I opened it up and realized that there was no straw that was getting down into the product to get it out. I squeezed the soft tube portion a bit to get the air out and put the cap and pump back on, and I finally got product out. The pump works fine, now, but it would be so much easier to just make this a squeeze tube and completely toss the pump.
Final verdict… I like it. It’s a good moisturizer for $8. It’s hydrating without being greasy, and it lasts all day. I wish it had more to it and the pump is a pain, but that’s not a deal breaker for a daytime moisturizer.