Friday, September 30, 2011

Stila E! Live From The Red Carpet Breathtaking Beauty Palette

Anybody who is anywhere near a Nordstrom Rack needs to get themselves there ASAP and pick up this Stila Breathtaking Beauty palette for something like $9.75 (or maybe all of them, why the heck not the price is right). It comes with 6 decently sized neutral eyeshadows (in cinema, best picture, film, academy, theater and drama), 1 all over shimmer in Kitten (aka a full size eyeshadow, it's not much good on the face) and 1 convertable color for lips/cheeks in Breathtaking

I haven't tried any of Stila's normal non-palette eyeshadows yet, but I understand that these are better quality than the $14 Travel Girl/Beach Girl sets, possibly as good as the normal Stila eyeshadows. The deal on this palette just keeps getting better and better as the convertable color is amazing AND the palette even comes with a full size Lip Glaze in Guava. The lip glaze alone is worth $22, although it is thinner and longer than the only other lip glaze I own they both contain the same amount of product. 

I really like these eyeshadows (I am including Kitten as an eyeshadow here), they are silky and have minimal fallout. The liners are a bit dark and sparkly for me though so I haven't used them yet and I am not sure when I will. Also the convertable color is just wonderful, I can see myself using it apart from when I want to use the palette. The lipgloss is sheer and I realized too late that it was probably meant to be worn over the convertable color on your lips...oh well, I'll try it that way next time :). 

Monday, September 26, 2011

B+C Laboratories AHA Mousse Cleansing Foaming Face Cleanser

I finally ran out of my Biore (Japan) Marshmallow Whip foaming face cleanser, so I was on the hunt for a new one. I really like Asian skincare, Japanese in particular, so I looked at the Japanese market. B&C Laboratories AHA Mousse Cleansing was a couple dollars more (it was about $14) than my old cleanser and most other ones, and a bit smaller too...but being the packaging freak I am I went for this one because it was the cutest. Now, I am not TOO shallow of course I wanted something that would have an effect I wanted too, so I was also interested because it had a sticker/label that said that it has "Mild fruits acid peeling & deep cleansing" and is for sensitive skin. Well, my skin isn't particularly sensitive but when something says "acid" "peeling" and "deep cleansing" I don't want it to be too harsh especially when I use it every day. From what I read AHA would be really good for what I want for my skin, so I hope it helps!

When I first pumped the foam into my hand it was kind of "limp" and watery, quite unlike Marshmallow Whip which is pretty dense (almost like shaving cream). However, when I started to massage it on my face it lathered up into a very luxurious foam where Marshmallow Whip somewhat thinned out on your face. AHA Mousse Cleansing has a strange but somehow pleasant scent, which is's kind of a "spa" scent in a way. I've only used this once so far, but I hope it shows some results, either way I am pleased with it and will most likely rebuy unless I hear something else is amazing.

There are a few other things in the line which I may check out if this product shows results. I forgot what they were exactly (I didn't look too closely) but there were only 2 or 3 of them.

Monday, September 19, 2011

MAC Pinch o' Peach and Pink Swoon Blushes

Since I am trying to beef up my natural/subtle blush collection I turned to MAC since they have such a wide variety of blushes, I was specifically interested in the "Sheertone" finish,'s sheer! They also come in a few cute (and matte, yay!) colors, such as these two, Pinch o' Peach and Pink Swoon, they look pretty similar here, and they ARE similar but like Springsheen and Peachykeen they definitely look different enough. Pinch o' Peach is a slightly peachy light pink. Like the name states, it's just got a pinch! I saw a lot of complaints on MUA that it really isn't very peach at all...but I think the name makes it pretty clear how peachy it's intended to be! I tend to like my blushes more coral or peachy, so this is a great blush for me to wear when I feel like that look but I want it more pink and more subtle!

Pink Swoon is a pretty basic "Barbie pink" sheer matte blush, I think this is a great color to brighten up your face, can't go wrong with it! If you like pink blushes or a dolly look I think this is a good one to have in your collection for dramatic eye/lip days or just if you don't feel like fussing with blush much. It's a very simple color, and not quite as nuanced as Pinch o' Peach but that's a good thing in my opinion. Sometimes you just want a simple, sweet dolly look with no frills. 

I am really into matte blushes right now, especially if it's a subtle look, because I don't want it to look like I am ONLY wearing shimmer. When I wear a subtle blush, most of the time I want it to look natural (note: I do like and wear subtle blushes with shimmer though). It's too bad matte blushes are so hard to come by most of the time, thank goodness for MAC, Tarte and Illamasqua!

I think if you are rather pale like I am then this sort of blush will not be too sheer for you, however if you already have a lot of color in your cheeks, or are not very pale you may not be pleased with the results, however you can layer and get a decent pop of color. I really like that these are kind of fool proof, in that you can slap a lot on and you won't look like a clown! I mean you might be able to put that much on, but I think you'd really have to work at making them look garish. These blushes, or blushes very similar to them should be in every girl's makeup stash, in my opinion. 

Pinch o' Peach

Pink Swoon

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Illamasqua Blush in Hussy

This is my first Illamasqua product, nothing else really called out to me before and I was put off by their "edgy" product names...I am not too pleased with this shade being called "Hussy" but it's pretty tame compared to some of their other/past product names ("Throb" and "Load" I'm looking at you...). I just couldn't turn down this shade and formula so despite the name I picked it up~. It leans a bit more orange in these pictures, but it definitely is on the pinker side of the spectrum.

I am loving matte blushes (and eyeshadows) lately, and this is no exception! It apply smoothly and not chalky at all due to being very finely milled, however powder gets ALL OVER the compact when you put your brush in it. Not a huge deal, but it's kind of irritating. That won't stop me from getting more Illamasqua blushes though, it's not very easy to find so many nice shades of matte blush.

Tarte Amazonian Blush in Dollface

After I got MAC Stunner blush I realized that I really need more subtle/light colored blushes...I've just about hit my limit on bright ones because many shades of bright coral/peach/pink can there even BE??? Also I don't ALWAYS feel like a bright blush, or want to spend time trying to apply it carefully...and I do sometimes wear bold or bright lipstick, and rarely eyeshadow that is not a neutral color. 

So my first subtle blush after making this decision was Tarte Dollface since I am sort of collecting the Tarte Amazonian Blush line. I only need 2 more and then I'll have all of them I want (and pretty much most of them anyway, plus one QVC exclusive shade). These might be my favorite blushes because they apply well, last all day and are not overly shimmery or sparkly, in fact most of them are matte. I also appreciate that when you get it from the pan on your brush you don't get a powdery mess everywhere but the blush is still very soft and pigmented. 

As usual my phone messes with my pictures, even though these are very heavy swatches it's still not that bright or coral, it's a nice peachy pink. It's the sheerest Tarte blush I own, but I bought it knowing that, and that was also part of the reason I bought it since sheerness helps with a subtle look, and is buildable without looking clownish. 

Monday, September 12, 2011

MAC Blush in Stunner (MAC Me Over Collection)

Usually I tend to go for brighter blushes, but something about MAC Stunner blush drew me in, I guess in part because of the fact that I usually get bright blushes...sometimes I just want to brighten up my face a bit without it being too obvious!

This color is actually nicely pigmented, but is a light color...don't be deceived by how it swatches (on my arm it looks much darker and more orange than it really is). It's a really awesome blush that is great for when you want a very natural look or if you want to go with a really bold eye or lip look. It's shimmery but not overly so, just enough to refract light in a flattering way and also give a little highlighting.

I am not sure how nice this would look on somebody significantly darker than I am since it's a light color, it might look a bit chalky. But I highly recommend this blush to my fellow pasty ghostly gals! I think every one of you need to get this blush before it's gone since it's LE.

Maybelline Haul (Walgreens 40% Off Sale)

Last week Walgreen's had a very generous sale on Maybelline products. Usually I opt out of BOGO 1/2 off because I feel it's not that great of a deal (BOGO Free is good, if I want even numbers of items), but when there is just x% off I tend to jump at the chance to partake in a good's got to be at least 40% though because less than that and it's gotta be something I really really wanted and not something I am trying out. Also I know how I am and I know I'll reach for my high end or mid range makeup items much more often than my drugstore items, so I don't want to pay too much for drugstore items.

In the case of these products they were things I heard were nice and just wanted to try out! I am very glad I did too, they are all very nice products for drugstore brands! I had heard the Maybelline EyeStudio collections were very similar to Japanese eyeshadows, especially the Color Explosion line (which happens to be my favorite). Now, I haven't gotten any Japanese eyeshadows myself because I am not really big on eyeshadow and so I couldn't justify the price...however at the price of these Maybelline shadows I didn't mind at all! I am glad I can experience the Japanese formula, even though it's not truly from Japan. 

My favorite products out of the bunch are the EyeStudio Color Explosion eyeshadow quints (more like quads when you take into consideration the pan at the top that is pure glitter), silky smooth, pigmented and long lasting (over primer, I never wear eyeshadow without it). It's a little hard to get your method of application into the "liner" pan (the darkest colors that is the thin V under the glitter), but it's not too bad. Other than that really no favorite out of the 2 I got is Caffeine Rush because it's the most useful for me as I gravitate more towards neutrals on a daily basis, and generally when I wear brighter colors it's just on the outside corners of my eyes with a neutral on the whole lid. 

All the Color Explosion palettes are very shimmery, but not really over the top unless you use the glitter as a wash. They had very minimal fall out, which was impressive. There are only 5 sets out right now and I really hope they make more, in more muted colors, so I can get some more...even the pink which doesn't seem as bright as the others is too bright for me to use on it's own. 

My second favorite item is the blush I picked up from the new Fall 2011 collection, Ravishing Rouge, which is a gorgeous brick red with minimal shimmer. It's supposed to be a dupe of the red Chanel, which is pretty but I knew I wouldn't use this color much so at that price that would have been insane. At $4ish after the 40% discount it was the right price to have just to have, or if I feel like experimenting. It's VERY VERY pigmented, so it's pretty hard to apply, you really have to use the tiniest amount and even then you will probably have to cover a bit with a translucent powder to tame it.

Lastly I'd heard that the EyeStudio Color Plush Silk Eyeshadows were also nice and similar to Japanese eyeshadows, I don't know if the one I got (Strut it Suede) is just subpar or what but I just didn't like it as much as the Color Explosion series. Also the glittery shades were just a bit too glittery for was still leagues above most drugstore eyeshadows though, in my opinion. Very silky and soft, just like the name illustrates :). 

I guess out of all of these though my only MUST HAVE item is the Color Explosion in Caffeine Rush quint. The other items are all nice too though, and I can absolutely recommend them if they tickle your fancy!

Maybelline EyeStudio Color Explosion in Pink Punch (in dusky sunlight & direct LED light)

Maybelline EyeStudio Color Plush Silk Eyeshadow in Strut it Suede (in direct LED light)

Maybelline EyeStudio Color Explosion in Caffeine Rush (in direct and indirect LED light)

Maybelline Blush in Ravishing Rouge (in 'normal' bulb light)