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Marissa dabbles in high end cosmetics and salon shampoos

I've tried Sisley products in the past, and while I liked them, I was younger and always on a quest for something better. Fast forward a few years, and a 40th birthday, and it's a whole new ball game. Since my skin care needs changed, I thought I would give this line a try again. I'm glad I did.

First, they win hands down for generous sampling. Anytime I buy something from their line, I leave with at least 7 new samples (which I know makes me buy more, but it's nice not to beg for a sample of something in their line). Here's what I've picked up from their line in the last few weeks (double points at Saks certainly helped me decide what to buy!).

Before I put on my foundation, I use the Tensor Immediate Lift ($150 for one ounce). I was looking for something that would give my skin a glow and this came highly recommended. I wasn't too sure, so I got some samples. The way this was described to me was, "It's what you put on when you're meeting friends you haven't seen for awhile so you want to wow them!" I'm not sure I wow-ed anyone, but I really liked the way this made my skin look and feel. And, I liked it enough to pay a small fortune for it, too, so you know this stuff is pretty darn good! It's marketed as an instant beauty boost, and it does what it says. I also really like that even it both helps foundation stay on longer and look flawless, and it makes my skin look great without putting on any makeup! And while I love wearing makeup, on the weekends I like a little lippy and maybe mascara and I'm off and running, so this fits perfect into my no-makeup kind of weekend.

I also bought the Transmat Make-Up with cucumber extract ($75 for 1.4oz tube), which is their foundation for normal to dry skin. Around this time of year, I normally use my foundation with a drop or two of Giorgio Armani #2 Fluid Sheer to give some life to my face. This foundation gave my face the radiance that it needed, especially in the winter. I don't need to use a powder to set my makeup when I use this foundation, and it seems to last all day. Normally I wear a yellow-based foundation, but this has a tinge of pink to it and matches perfectly. I also like that I don't feel it on my face; some foundations you know are just sitting on your skin, but this one has a very light texture while still delivering good coverage.

The Sisleya Eye and Lip Contour Cream ($150 for .5oz) is a great one to sample. I like this because it's a double duty product. I use this on and above my lips, and all around my eyes. It smells great, absorbs quickly and doesn't irritate my eyes at all. It also made my skin feel tighter and more firm right after I put it on. My friend Seema loves this stuff, and I'm so glad she turned me onto it, too!

The Sisley Glossy Lipgloss ($36) is just beautiful. I can't rave enough about it. I bought three (01 Sorbet, 06 Cristal, and 07 Lychee) and already want more! Sorbet is a pinky peach that looks great with the Sisley natural lip pencil or over any lipstick. Cristal is a silvery white that is beautiful over any lipstick, and Lychee is a mauvey color that I wear alone or over Sisley shade 06 lipstick. I have to say that all of the glossy glosses make your lips look fuller and people have actually commented about my lips! I LOVE THESE GLOSSES. And remember, I'm the one that is just getting into gloss - it was never my favorite lip product in the past, but it is now! The fun thing about the glosses are the multi-colored flecks in them; they really pick up the light and give your lips a real shimmer. Thankfully, I never feel like a teenager wearing these glosses, more like a very glamorous grown-up.

Finally, I bought two of their lipsticks ($42). Now, I've had them in the past and always liked them, but thought they needed to expand their color collection. Well, I am happy to report there are about five more that I would like to buy someday! The two that I bought were the hydrating long lasting lipstick in L6 and L17. L6 is a lipstick I had before that I really liked but one of my kids decided it made a better crayon than a lipstick. It's a nice red-maroon brown color that goes with most everything. L17 is one of their new colors, a pinky shade with gold flecks that is really nice for day or night. Both last through most of the day. I reapplied twice - once after two cups of coffee, and once after lunch, mainly to freshen it up, not because the color was completely gone.

I won't kid you, this line is pricey. However, I like that the products are made with natural plant extracts and essential oils, so I feel I am doing something good for my skin. You can find out more about Sisley at sisleycosmetics.com. Saks and Neiman Marcus sell Sisley and the website can give you more information as to where you can purchase in your area. For discounted prices, log onto strawberrynet.com and see what you can find.

Moving on: Senscience by Shiseido Laboratories
I had heard of Senscience products but never saw them in the salon where I get my hair cut. When the opportunity came up to finally try the line, I was happy to take a look.

The Silk Moisture Shampoo ($10) and Silk Moisture Conditioner ($12) are very rich and luxurious. The shampoo creates a rather thick lather that leaves your hair feeling very soft, not dry or straw-like. With some shampoos you need to use a conditioner, but with this shampoo you don't have to, but you will, because the conditioner makes your hair so soft and shiny. I have both a perm and highlights in my hair, so when I say these products make my hair look and feel healthy and shiny, I mean it! This is the first shampoo and conditioner that I used to the very end without putting it back in the cabinet and trying something different. That's probably the greatest testimonial of all! And can I just say a little something about the prices - what a bargain!

I also tried two other products that I will continue to use until I can't squeeze anymore product out of them! Revive Silk Styling Creme ($14) is recommended for coarse, curly and frizzy hair. I have curly hair and it works really well to help tame it down. If you want curly curls, again, this will tame it and not make it as curly, but I find that if I use this and a curl enhancer, my hair is curly, soft and shiny. I also use the Renew Shine Serum ($14) to increase the shine factor. All the dry heat in the winter makes my hair so dull, but this really perks it right up. I use it on damp hair so that it doesn't weigh down the curls, and when I blow out my hair to really boost the shine. You can visit the Senscience website at senscience.com for information on where to find these products in your area.

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Posted March 9, 2005

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