Thursday, January 14, 2016

**REVIEW** Making Cosmetics

Because I prefer keeping my beauty products as natural as possible, I like scouring the Internet for affordable places to shop. I use lots of oils and butters for my skin and hair, and I like to find ingredients that give me options with my makeup.

Amazon is great for finding things that aren't available locally. I was looking for an alternative to brand name - and brand priced - "blurring" and smoothing products  (think Garnier's 5 Sec Blur and Maybelline's Pore Eraser). What I found was a cheaper and more effective product:

Price = around 6 bucks + s/h for 1.0oz
Price for 5 Sec Blur = around 17 dollars for 1.0oz (here in Alaska, but I've heard it's about $15 in Lower 48)

I mentioned Wrinkle Blur in a post from last summer. When I fell in love with that product, I was curous about where it originated. I'm glad I stumbled upon the site because I am a regular customer now.

I'll just go ahead and make a list of all the things I like about Making Cosmetics:

  • M.C. lists detailed information about every one of their products, including Description; CAS #; INCI Name; Properties (of the product); Use (ex: iin DIY formulas); Applications; Documents (recipes, Cert. of Analysis, and even more detailed info, such as Safety Data ); and then they list some commercial items that the item resembles or shares usage with.
  • Aside from all that information, they even provide the Harmonized Tariff Code for the item (in case of shipping). Anyone working in freight or supply chain logisitics will appreciate the heck out of that.
  • The site has a lot of resources for DIY cosmetic kitchenistas. You can find answers to common questions about making your own cosmetics, troubleshoot formulating issues. There is a Video Library and a formulating service, in case you are skittish or just want to have someone else do the mixing.
  • For those of you who really want to put together your own products, you can find the recipes for shampoos and conditioners, face powders, shower gels, lotions, balms, creams for different skin types, and men products.  I could swear that, at one time, there was a section for products aimed at the "ethnic" skin and hair care market. 
  • If you aren't in full DIY mode, but still want some control over your beauty products, M.C. has complete kits (for lipsticks, eyeshadows, hair masks, etc.) If you are seriously DIY, there's everything from beakers to microbial test kits.  For someone just approaching the idea of DIY beauty and skin care, there are books on basics and advanced topics.
  • Prices are outstanding. I've ordered oils and powders and I've always been able to choose a size to fit my meager budget. 
  • The customer service is top notch. I have never had a problem with anything, but I did screw up one of my orders. I contacted M.C. and they fixed my mistake pronto.
  • If you create an account, you earn points redeemable for gift certificates that can be used to purchase M.C. products on site
  • You have alternatives to just paying for expensive, OTC products that skimpy on the main ingredient and often have a ton of additives. Also, they sell quite a few things in bulk sizes. For example, I got the the M.C."Blur" from Amazon in April of last year. After using some at least twice a week (sometimes every day even, I still have 2/3 left. The store brand item goes much faster. At just about 3 times the price...
  •  My shipments have always come very quickly and protected very well. A HUGE plus for me is that M.C. doesn't try to gouge Alaska customers with crazy S&H charges. Matter of fact, they don't even charge for "handling" on domestic orders.
In my opinion, I think that more people ought to be flocking to sites like Making Cosmetics. I hear so many people of different groups who aren't always satisfied with brand products. Think I'm lying? How many times have you heard someone saying something about products like...
  • "I can never find a (foundation, lipstick, eyeshadow, blush, etc.) that (I like, is in my shade, lasts long enough, doesn't break me out, etc.)"
  • "My hair is too (thin, thick, nappy, curly, straight, dry, oily, etc) for most shampoos and/or conditioners."
  • "This is my favorite (lipstick, mascara, etc.) but it's just too expensive and doesn't last long enough."
  • "I'd like something without any/less (fragrance, chemicals,etc.)"
Then there are just those people who have researched products and know what works on their hair or skin, but stuggle to find OTC products with those things included. I experience this a lot when it comes to my natural hair. I hear all about certain ingredients that are good for my 4b/4c dry and breakage-prone hair. The problem is finding products that contain the things I need without the bad stuff - and for an affordable price.

So there are a lot of reasons that more of us should be taking control of which ingredients we use in our beauty routine.  

I've learned a few things ever since I started going more "natural" and DIY with my skin and hair care. One thing is that consumers can save a lot of money by finding other resources. When I buy something like, for example, a "blurring" product at the store, I'm mostly paying more for marketing than I am for ingredients and formulation.  Another thing is that, I love having control over what I'm using on my hair and skin. There are so many times I've bought brand products - mainly for my hair - without understanding all the ingredients. It's nice that I have some choices with what I use. I can either keep fully natural (or, at least, non-toxic) or I can control the ingredients list.

Since I've been using basic products or just mixing up my own instead of giving my money to brand name companies, my life is the reverse of this:

Now, I'm not the most talented at DIY projects (my niece, +Gabrielle B owns that honor), but I can figure out how to take care of my skin, hair and beauty needs without major mishaps. Making Cosmetics is a huge benefit to people like me.  Go check them out.


P.S.: Nope, this is NOT a sponsored post. I received nothing from Amazon or Making Cosmetics for sharing my opinion. This was just one of those times when I had to share a good thing with the rest of you.