Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Project Samples: 6/6/10 - 7/1/10

Here are the samples I used during the month of June... most of it is Benefit and from the "Benefit To Go Beauty Bestsellers" kit I got from Sephora a while back. It came with 4 sample sizes of their most popular products.
Along with the Benefit products I tried, I tried the Nars shadow base, and one of my scent shots from Candles by Victoria.
So, here we go!

- Nars Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base
Full size: 0.26 oz / $24
Availability: Nars, Sephora, Nordstrom/department stores

I've tried 2 other eye shadow primers/bases and I still think I like the Urban Decay one the most. For starters, UDPP is $18 for 0.34 oz. That's 0.1 more for $6 less. Yes, the packaging is cute but cumbersome because it's hard to get all the product out. It has the slanted doe-foot applicator though which I like. The Benefit Stay Don't Stray (previously mentioned in a Samples post) has the pump which is hard to control. Formula wise it had the same amount of staying power as the Urban Decay, it was just slightly thinner which was harder to blend in. When comparing the UDPP to this, I found that the Nars dried faster, because it was slightly pastier. It also comes with a doe-foot applicator which is something I like because it makes controlling how much product you use easier. The problem i had with this was that if you didn't apply the shadow in a timely manner, it became difficult to blend on top of the base. It had tremendous staying power though so that was a total plus.
The base itself was transparent so it wouldn't even out skin tone or anything on the lids. In general I do like the Nars products, but this is probably not something I'd purchase again because there are other products I could use instead.

- Benefit Some Kind-a Gorgeous Foundation. Shade "Medium"
Full size: 0.34 oz / $28
Availability: Benefit, Sephora, Macys/department stores

Benefit calls this a "Foundation Faker". It's a cream-to-powder foundation and is super sheer. It comes in Lite, Medium and Deep and the sheerness of it really allows for it to come in just 3 shades. The one thing I never really loved about Benefit (I'll always be a supporter of Benefit, it's the first brand I ever used and I'll use it forever) was that their face products don't come in a large variety. If you have pink undertoned Lite, Medium or Dark skin, you'd be set. Otherwise, you wouldn't really have an option, like me. So this sample was a little iffy for me in the beginning because I didn't expect it to work for me at all.
The product is quite creamy, but not thick at all. It's very sheer so the pink undertones in the product really don't show up. Since this sample size was small, it was really difficult to use it as a foundation, so I mainly used it as a light concealer which is great for the summer.
Since it is so creamy to begin with, it didn't really strike me as a product that would be great for oily skin. So, underneath the product I used UDPP and it stayed on well all day.
I'm honestly probably not going to order a full size of it because it's not a foundation that I could use since its so creamy. If you have a drier skin it would probably be great for you.

- Benefit Posietint
Full size: 0.42 oz / $28
Availability: Benefit, Sephora, Macys/department stores

Like High Beam, Moon Beam, and Benetint, the full size of Posietint comes in a nail polish bottle like package - it has a brush and you apply it straight to your face with it. That's probably the one thing that intimidates people the most about these 4 products that it's a liquid and you have to apply a liquid directly to the face with a tiny little brush.
I own a full size of the other 3 and like the other 3 didn't have any problems whatsoever with the brush applicator in the sample.
Posietint is a cheek/lip stain like Benetint, but comes in a cute flower pink color (Benetint comes in a sheer rose red color). I didn't purchase this previously because I didn't think I needed a blush color that's so cute, and mostly because I have naturally pink cheeks.
Initially I thought it was going to be much brighter because as you can see the product on the brush without being blended out looks super bright. When swatched, it doesn't look bright at all and then when blended out it's just a very cute pink color.
It's a great summer blush because it's a fresh pink, it's not a powder at all so it won't look overly makeup-y on the skin and it stays on all day.
I applied it over and under foundation and it was fine either way. Putting foundation over it did subdue it slightly so if you don't like to put color on your cheeks it's still totally usable.
It's definitely a must purchase in the future.

- Benefit "That Gal" Brightening Face Primer
Full size: 0.37 oz / $28
Availability: Benefit, Sephora, Macys/department stores

To be honest, I never thought about purchasing this at all because I was intimidated by the full sized packaging. It comes in a glue-stick like package and I just... didn't think I could deal with rubbing a stick all over my face without getting too much product on my face.
When I saw that a sample size of this came in a tube, I was sold (more so than I was before with all the other products I could try in the set).
I used this once as an all over face primer, and hated it. I have oily skin so a primer with reflects in it didn't work out at all. That and my foundation didn't stay at all because it wasn't oil free or made to mattify the skin.
I did end up using it as an under the eye brightener. I previously used High Beam under the eyes and liked how it worked but sometimes could be overwhelmingly bright. Using this under the eys was nice because it wasn't too bright at all and it blended well. The brightening was enough to make a positive difference but not to be too bright under the eyes.
Alone it's a baby pink sheer color that doesn't really change the skin color at all, unless you are really deep. I feel like if you have a deeper skin tone, this might look slightly funny because of the light pink and slightly brightening quality of it.
I'm iffy about purchasing a full size of this because I wouldn't use it for anything other than under my eyes.

- Amaretto Scent Shot from Candles by Victoria
Availability: Candles by Victoria

Scent shots on Candles by Victoria are $1.95 each and a great way to try, mix and pick fragrances you want without committing to a full sized candle.
Candles by Victoria has 580 scents and counting and by being able to order scent shots makes you able to mix and make an infinite amount of scents on your own. She also makes different sized, shaped and colored candles that you can design on your own (like the Love Victoria line) or individual candles in one of the scents she offers. There's even a "make your own" candle option where you mix 2 scents, choose the color and name of it.
In order to melt the scent shots, you will need to have/buy a tart warmer which she sell on her site. The one in the picture is the Ivory 2 Piece Tart Warmer.
Amaretto is supposed to smell like almond liqueur. Given that I've never had/smelled even seen Amaretto, I have no idea what it's supposed to smell like. It didn't smell almondy at all to me, more cranberry-ish. It definitely smells fruity to me and not nutty or earthy the way I'd assume something with almonds is supposed to smell.
I did enjoy it though. It is a scent I'd probably use again around Thanksgiving because of the cranberry-ness I smell in it.
I don't know if I'd by a full candle of it because I enjoy the more standard butter infused bakery scents more (Fudge Brownie, Buttercream, Buttery Caramel etc). I will keep the melted shot and melt it again later though.

Sleek i-Divine Eye Shadow Palette "The Original" Eye Shadow Tutorial

This was another requested tutorial, based on a look in my review for the Sleek i-Divine Eye Shadow Palette, in "The Original".
The first time I had done this look was in the car, with my fingers, and it was rushed and hap-hazard. I was just excited to use the colors. When recreating this look, I used brushes, different lighting, my skin is tanner and my camera quality is better. That being said, the eye shadow and the look as a whole will look totally different.
That being said, here are pictures and all the products I used!

Top 10 China Glaze Nail Polishes

So I'm going to do a four-part video mini-series of my top 10 nail polishes from OPI, China Glaze, Zoya and then a "other higher end brands" video.
Without any more explanation, here are my top 10 China Glaze Polishes!

Emerald Sparkle

Re-Fresh Mint (China Glaze "Up & Away" Spring 2010 Collection)

For Audrey

Four Leaf Clover (China Glaze "Up & Away" Spring 2010 Collection)

Flyin' High (China Glaze "Up & Away" Spring 2010 Collection)

Light as Air (China Glaze "Up & Away" Spring 2010 Collection)

DV8 (China Glaze "OMG" Collection)

2NITE (China Glaze "OMG" Collection)

IDK (China Glaze "OMG" Collection)

QT (China Glaze "OMG" Collection)

Sunday, June 27, 2010

NOTW: gold gold gold gold gold

This week I started off with one gold nail, then amped it up midway through and made it SUPER gold, glittery, shiney and metallic.

Part 1:
"Luxe" by Orly
Part of their Foil FX Collection.... Loved this in the beginning, but i'm having super nail ADD so I wanted to change it up a bit, without redoing everything. This was 3 coats, with one coat of Seche Vite on top.

Part 2:
2 coats of "Cleopatra" by China Glaze on top of the "Luxe". This warmed up the color a bit (which you can obviously see in the difference of the photos) because of the warm gold glitters inside the polish. "Cleopatra" on it's own is just a clear base with a TON of warm gold glitters, and a few blue and green (maybe it's rainbow but I only see the blue and green) glitters mixed in.
I've been playing around with "Cleopatra" for a while now, seeing what it looks like on top of different colors. This is by far the best though. So much gold!
It's just so glittery, shiny and pretty :D

This is one of my favorite NOTW that I've done in a while.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Female Celebrities #9 - Colbie Caillat, "I Never Told You"

Here is the 9th Female Celebrity look in my Female Celebrity series. It was requested and based off of the Colbie Caillat music video, "I Never Told You".

It's super neutral, not very much color in the face at all. The eyes are a cool based silvery brown and the lips were a glossy coral.... I totally blanked and didn't take a picture of it before I took my makeup off so I don't have any photos of myself with the look. Sorry!
I hope you guys enjoy!

Products Used:
- Urban Decay Primer Potion
- Benefit Creaseless/Cream Eye Shadow, "Strut"
- Mac Eye Shadow, "Satin Taupe"
- Mac Eye Shadow, "Phloof!"
- Mac Eye Shadow, "Mylar"
- Mac Kohl Power Eye Pencil, "Feline"
- Maybelline Colossal Mascara
- Mac Mineralize Skin Finish, "Comfort"
- Benefit Box of Powder, "Dandelion", "Georgia"
- Mac Liberty of London Creamsheen Lipstick, "Ever Hip"
- Clinique Superbalm Moisturizing Gloss, "Grapefruit"
- Mac 217
- Mac 227
- Sigma SS219
- Mac 109
- Sigma SS187

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Mac Superglass Collection

So about a month ago, Mac came out with the Superglasses. They were essentially advertised as the Uber Dazzleglass... more product, bigger glitter, more glossy. The most exciting part for me would definitely be the additional product you get vs. the Dazzleglasses. The Dazzleglasses are 0.06 oz for $18, whereas the Superglasses are 0.15 oz for the same price. BIG DIFFERENCE.
The Superglasses are fairly sticky but all Mac lipglosses are stickier than the average lipgloss so really, not a big surprise. Still has the same vanilla scent. They stay on fairly long, slightly longer than the Dazzleglasses and Lip Gelees. It was slightly drying though, and when it did dry up on my lips, the big flakes of glitter were left and well it wasn't flattering at all.
The glitters in the Superglasses are much bigger flakes as well, like in nail polish when you get flakes of glitter instead of little tiny squares. So really, when it's left on your lips? Not flattering.
There are are 9 different shades ranging from neutral to bold, and can be purchased here on Mac's website or in Mac stores and counters.

The two Superglasses I purchased were Sweet Tart and Sugar Overload. They're both on the neutral side, one being a light warm pink, and one being a close to nude light peach. When applied they're not too opaque, and go one quite sheer.
All of them come with a brush applicator like the Dazzleglasses do, which I don't actually prefer when it comes to lip gloss applicators. I think the doe-foot ones fit better on my lips and gets a nicer coat of gloss on my lips. I feel like with brush applicators it's easier to pile on the gloss and with the doe-foot I have a little more control.

Overall I do like them, and I might purchase a more bold color since none of them are sold out online yet. These seem like they were meant to be and are more fun in bolder colors, so when I have extra money I might consider getting another one. It's not a must purchase for me though.

Tutorial: Birthstone Series - #3, March "Aquamarine"

First thing, I hate the face photo above but it was the only full face photo I had that really showed the blue lol.
Second, I started my blog right after I had filmed and posted my second birthstone look, so this is the first of the birthstones to make it to the blog!
This is for March, which is "Aquamarine"... it's a silver to barely midtone blue shimmery gradient on the lid and a dark blue liner on the bottom lash and then a super neutral face and lip.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Current Obsession: Rockslide Brownie Candle

Candles By Victoria makes these Comfort Candles that are absolutely AMAZING. They're on her very last page of her site, number 16.
The one I bought is the Rockslide Brownie candle, which is layers of chocolate, brownie and caramel, with brownie and caramel chunks on top. It's absolutely wonderful.
If you haven't tried any of her candles they're extremely scented. I like to keep the candles un-capped for a light scenting of my room, and to get a stronger scent, I burn them. It's probably the most delectable treat ever, without eating unhealthily.
It's double wicked so it burns evenly, since it's quite a large candle.
I can't say anything more positive about CBV and their products because they're absolutely amazing. Go check them out!

Belle Ame Bath Products

Being a bath lover, when I first saw the review of this company on Juicystar07 and Allthatglitters21 's channels, I instantly wanted to try the products. I'm a total sucker for comfort items, whether it be food, candles or bath stuff so this totally was down my alley. The Belle Ame site has mostly bath bombs, but they also have soaps, shower gels, bath scrubs, candles, stuff for kids, men and pets. If you compare it to Lush, which still holds my top spot for bath products, it doesn't have as many items, but it does regulate the price of their products. It's because most of their products are all the same size, where as the Lush products are different sizes there for different prices.
Shipping wise, Belle Ame took quite a while to get my products to me, and although they promised free shipping for over $50, I didn't get free shipping. You were supposed to enter a code for it, but that wasn't clear on the site, and unlike 95% of the sites that do promise free shipping after a certain amount of items purchased, it didn't automatically deduct the shipping costs. Lush also has new shipping rates, which includes $8 2 day shipping for orders under 6 pounds, which if you've ordered from Lush, is quite a bit of product. When I emailed the Belle Ame store about getting my shipping fee back, they said they would reimburse me but that has yet to happen, and I ordered about 3 months ago.
It took a while for Belle Ame to get my products to me because they were making a new batch of one of the bath bombs I ordered, which was a comforting reason to not get my products as fast as I had anticipated. I assume it's also the same with Lush, because sometimes my products get to me must faster than other times.
Their website is cute, organized and easy to navigate (besides having to find the shipping code), so that wasn't an issue at all.

First product I used was the Foaming Body Scrub in "Honey Almond". It's kind of a watery scrub... definitely not a solid, salt mass like a lot of body scrubs. It lathers quite nicely and the scent stays on the skin all day, which doesn't happen often with body washes and scrubs by other companies. This was $14.95 on the website. They currently don't have any available online, probably because it's out of stock, but it might be updated soon.

Next product is the "Honey Almond" Shower Gel, which is $9.95. They have 6 different scents for this. This one also lathers really well and the scent lingers on the skin. It's a quick way to feel clean and refreshed as well as pampered without having to take a long bath.

Then I purchased 7 bath bombs, which are $4.95 each. They're the same size as the Lush "Butterball" bath bombs, and are also the same price. These are more cutely packaged though, and have small details like dried flowers in them that make them a little more individual. In terms of how they lasted in the water, it was exactly the same as the Lush bath bomb. The fizz time was the same, and the scent lasted the same amount of time in the water, which was about as long as the water stayed warm.
I did find that the Lush bath bombs had different properties to them... "Butterball" is very moisturizing and soothing to the skin where as "Avobath" is a little more refreshing because the individual and specific oils inside each of the products. I feel like the Belle Ame products did moisturize and scent my skin but the different products didn't have different functions. The scents helped in either pepping me up or calming me down, but it didn't have se same overall calming effect like the Lush ones did.

- Wild Honeysuckle
Very summery, fresh and true to honeysuckle. Some hints of other fragrances underneath, but overall just a true honeysuckle scent.

- Honey Almond
It smells exactly like almond paste that you would find in a pastry. The almond is the first overwhelming smell, then comes the hints of honey underneath. Very comforting.

- Juicylicious
It's both flowery and fruity. Not at all sweet like I thought it was going to be. The little candy stars probably made me think that. It's very fresh and peppy. Cute, and appropriate for the kid's section on the website.

- Buttercream Icing
More close to Icing than Buttercream. The Candles By Victoria Buttercream scents are always heavier on butter, whereas this is more heavy on the icing department. Smells very yummy.

- Stop and Smell The Roses
Pure roses. No artificial smell at all by mixing in other flowery scents. It reminds me a lot of one of my favorite perfumes, the L'Occitane 4 princesses rose scent. It's very luxurious.

- Lush Lavender
Another pure flower scent. It doesn't have any undertones of any other flowers. Classic bath product scent.

- Sassy Sugar
It's very sugary. In a good way. I hate sugar perfume scents, but when it comes to bath and candle scents it doesn't bother me at all. This one is purely sugar, but not at all sickly. Very cute as well.