Last year when I was introduced to E.L.F, a cosmetics company out of New York, I was sceptical of their "Only a $1" campaign. Paying $1 for cosmetics seemed too good to be true but that is exactly what I paid for most of the items I order. Some were even free! Not all, but most of their products are only a dollar.
The website is well laid out and easy to surf with large clear images and an easy ordering system. I have made a few purchases from them and was surprised by their quick delivery (although disappointed that they have raised their Canadian shipping rates). If you have friends who love cosmetics as much as you do then this is a good place to go in on the shipping is a bit pricey to order a few items, especially to Canada. But if you group shop and split the shipping you'll really experience the savings.
The make-up containers are obviously not where the money goes and is probably why they are able to offer them at such considerable savings. Below you'll find a sampling of most of the products I've tried and what I thought of them. Some were great and others are worth avoiding. In no particular order:
Shielding Gloss with SPF 15 - This gloss smells great but is sticky and gooey. It feels terrible on. I've tried it twice and have given up on it. Stay clear of this one. No one would want to kiss you again after feeling this.
Shine Eraser Blotting Sheets - 50 tissue thin sheets that absorb oil off face and gives a matte and minimized pore appearance. Very cool and actually works. I've seen and used similar products like this before that have cost more. Small enough to fit into clutch.
Clarifying Pressed Powder - I am quite impressed with this product considering the price. The money doesn't go into the actual compact which is fine with me as I'd rather pay for the stuff going on my skin. It has a light orange scent and applies smoothly with a brush or the included puff. The coverage lasts all day and works well when touched up with the blotting sheets. This product is hypoallergenic.
Color Protection Nail Lacquer - The main tag lines for this product are "prevents nail yellowing", "chip resistant", and "glass shine". It is also hypoallergenic, toluene free and formaldehyde free. I was amazed by this product! Very impressed. I had my esthetician apply it to my toes and it stayed on over four weeks without chipping. I thought for sure it would chip in a week but nope. Excellent color and shine too. A great bargain at a $1.
Wet Gloss Lash and Brow Clear Mascara - This is another of my favourite products. It's a double end tube with one end for mascara and the other for the brows. It gives the lashes a natural wet look but not made up. No dark flaking to worry about. But it definitely isn't the same look at regular mascara. The other end shapes and controls the eyebrows which is really my favourite part. My light brows looked fabulous!
Therapeutic Conditioning Balm - This balm is silky smooth and feels good on the lips. The smell is a bit strawberry. It's hypoallergenic and won't clog pores and is supposed to prevent chapping. Unfortunately it comes off every time you drink something and tastes horrid.
Natural Radiance Blusher - This tiny blusher is hypoallergenic. It is silky and blends great but needs to be applied with a delicate hand. This blush lasted throughout the day.
Brightening Eye Color Luxe - "Light reflecting, non-creasing, no fading" as well as fragrance free and no animal testing. This product came with four shades. They blended really nice but the sponge applicator broke after the first use. Luckily I had my own backup brushes. I was surprised with this product. It faded a bit later in the day but no creases; a problem I've had with a lot of expensive products that claim to be non-creasing.
Perfect Tweezers - "Professional quality, stainless steel construction." They are bigger than my normal tweezers but they seem to work well; although I'm not sure the tips are as precise as I'd want them to be.
Brow Comb/Brush - This is one of their "professional make-up brushes" designed by Scott Vincent Barba and is supposedly ergonomically designed. If you need a brush and are ordering from E.L.F anyway then it's worth the buck.
Smudge Eye Sponge - This is a cool tool. Nice quality construction. I've never been able to smudge my eye shadows properly before I got this. No more racoon eyes for me.
Natural Looking Lush Lashes - The kit includes one pair of black lashes, adhesive gel and plastic contour tray. This requires some dexterity that I don't have. The gel tube was cheap and difficult to squeeze accurately and only had two applications. AND they don't look natural. Save up and have some individual ones put on at the spa.
Mini Cosmetics Bag - The striped bag holds brushes and current cosmetics. It's double sided with two zippers. One of the zippers sticks but it was free so I'm not too concerned. I'm not sure I would recommend buying them though.
If you love cosmetics and are on a budget (even if you are not on a budget) I highly recommend giving E.L.F (short for eyes, lips, face) a try. They pride themselves on being affordable, hypoallergenic and cruelty free.
Visit E.L.F to find these and many other products for a $1 or more.