Tuesday, April 30, 2013

NYC Applelicious Glossy Lip Balms

I personally don't believe it's possible to have too many lip balms.  If I can find a good tinted lip balm, all the better!  NYC currently has some seriously cute ones with their Applelicious Glossy Lip Balms, and I have Big Apple Red and Applelicious Pink to show you today.
Big Apple Red, Applelicious Pink

Each of the balms has an apple shaped moisturizing core surrounded by the tinted balm.  With a trio of shea butter, jojoba, and avocado oils, these give moisture, sheen, and sheer color to your lips.  I was actually pleasantly surprised at the level of color in these!  They do have an apple scent which was noticeable enough that I could smell it after applying, but it does fade after a bit.
Applelicious Pink
Big Apple Red
For $2.99 each, these are worth checking out!

Disclaimer:  I purchased these.

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Monday, April 29, 2013

Deep Ocean Exaggerate Waterproof Eye Definer by Rimmel London

Rimmel's waterproof eyeliners have gotten some really good buzz, so I picked up Deep Ocean recently.  I've been on a search for a good dark blue matte eyeliner, which is not as easy as it might seem. 
Deep Ocean is indeed a darker blue that leans slightly teal.  While not the true navy I was hoping for, it's a lovely color and the texture is soft and creamy, making it super easy to apply.  There is a foam smudge tip on the end of the retractable pencil, and if you work quickly you can smudge out the line before it sets.  Cause once this sets, it did not budge on me!

I compared it to some other liners that I have.  Deep Ocean is the top swatch, an Ulta Smoky Eyes pencil in Cobalt is the middle, and Urban Decay's Binge is the last swatch.  Deep Ocean is definitely the most pigmented of the three.
Deep Ocean, Cobalt, Binge
The Exaggerate Eye Definers are marketed as wearing for 10 hours, and Deep Ocean did last all day with no smudging or fading and the line was still going strong when I removed my makeup before bed.  I'm impressed!  I haven't tried it on my waterline so can't speak to that. 
The downside is that there are only six shades available in this line.  I've seen prices ranging from $4.50 to $7, but these are easily one of the best low budget eye pencils I've tried.  I'll be on the lookout for new colors!

Disclaimer:  I purchased this.

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Saturday, April 27, 2013

Estee Lauder Lilly Pulitzer Shadow Floral Pure Color Palette

This lovely little palette was part of the Estee Lauder Shadow Floral GWP that was offered at Bloomingdales earlier this month.  I've never tried any Estee Lauder eyeshadows, but am a huge fan of their Pure Color blushes.  This eyeshadow colors included in this palette is the duo Waves, the shimmer finish Tempting Mocha, and the satin Sugar Cube.  The Pure Color Blush is called Lover's Blush and is in the shimmer finish.
 Waves is actually a Pure Color shadow duo retails for $32 on it's own.  The lighter color is a sheer gold and the darker a peacock blue.  Both of these apply sheer, but can be built up in color.  Tempting Mocha is a lovely taupe that was nicely pigmented and applied nicely.  It was the best performing of the four in terms of color, as the others were more sheer.  Sugar Cube is a nice highlight shade for the inner eye or brow bone, depending on your coloring.  Both Tempting Mocha and Sugar Cube are available as single eyeshadows and retail for $21 each.  Pricey, I know.  I wasn't impressed with any of these enough to pay to want to pay those prices, although I think they are decent shadows. 
Lover's Blush almost looks like a light colored bronzer in the palette, but the gold shimmer in it did leave a bit of peach cast which moved it more into blush category, IMO.  It also applied sheer but can be built up in color.  A few swipes yields some gold flecks, whereas buffing on repeatedly built up color.  A highlight of the Pure Color blushes is that they look so natural on, and it is difficult to overdo them.  At first your think "these are poorly pigmented", but I actually don't think that's the case.  Their sheerness allows the color to build without looking cakey and I always end up thinking "wow, my skin looks better" when I use them. 
I saw this palette on ebay for $10, which would be totally worth it to me for the blush alone.  The shadows are a nice bonus and I like how they looked on, but are not something I would spring for on their own.
Disclaimer:  I received this as a gift with purchase.

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Friday, April 26, 2013

NOTD: Gilda by Zoya

Gilda, a in your face, glittery hot pink glass flecked beauty by Zoya, was part of the 2010 Sparkle summer collection.  I saw where someone said it bordered on the '80s, and I can see that.  I used 2 coats with base and top coats and the formula was problem free.
Zoya uses women's names for all of their polishes, and the only Gilda I could think of was Gilda Radner.  Somehow, that didn't seem to fit, so I did some searching.  I've now decided that the namesake for this polish actually comes from the movie Gilda, as I could definitely see this femme fatale sporting this color.
Source:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gilda
Gilda has a glowing quality that is really eye catching and I can see this as a great pedi color during the summer.  Zoya makes the best glass flecked polishes out there, IMO.
 Disclaimer:  I purchased this.

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Thursday, April 25, 2013

Bring on the Pink! Lancome Shimmer Pink Pool Blush and Wannabe Creme Lipstick

Shimmer Pink Pool
I finally got a chance to try out the Shimmer Pink Pool blush and the Wannable creme lipstick from the recent Nordstrom GWP set I acquired at the end of March.  I find that one of the hazards of beauty blogging is acquiring mucho makeup and then not using it much before moving on to the next item.  I want to make sure I spend some time with items and really use them, so I'll occasionally be featuring different looks of the day that incorporate items beyond their initial appearance on the blog.  After all, good makeup does not need to languish in a drawer!
Shimmer Pink Pool is indeed pink and has a silver shimmer in it, and looking at it in pan I thought it would lean more cool than it actually does.  It is richly pigmented and I found myself applying a bit too much at first as a result and needed it buff it out.  I'm somewhat uncomfortable with high shimmer content in face products, as I find they highlight my skin imperfections, but I think Shimmer Pink Pool fell nicely within my comfort zone.  Lancome Blush Subtil's retail for $30.  It is oil free and is supposed to be oil absorbing, which is a plus for me.
Heavily swatched
Color Design Wannabe lipstick is a richly pigmented fuschia pink creme, although Lancome describes it as a muted purple magenta.  I like Lancome lipsticks, and I found Wannabe to be creamy, smooth, comfortable, and long wearing.  I tend to shy away from bright lips, so I lightly applied Wannabe and spread it with my finger.  A little goes a long way with this lipstick!  Color Design lipsticks are $22.

I really like both of these and think they complement each other nicely.  The pigmentation and finish of both are lovely and wearable and I'll be visiting both again!
Disclaimer:  I received these as a gift with purchase.

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Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil Vault

When Urban Decay had the 24/7 eye pencil vault for sale on their site, I talked myself out of it.  When it sold out quickly, I admired the pictures that others who bought it posted.  When the vault showed up April 9th on Sephora for all of about 15 minutes, something snapped and I bought it.  I've got regrets in my life, but fortunately, this isn't one of them:-)
If you haven't seen it, the vault includes all 40 of the current crop of 24/7 eye pencil colors offered by Urban Decay.  Thirteen of the colors are brand new, and 15 were previously limited edition but are now permanent.  Twelve older colors were also discontinued, so quite the shakeup in 24/7 eyeliner land!
New colors:
  • Smoke:  deepest gray matte
  • Roach:  deep copper brown shimmer
  • Desperation:  deep taupe to gray matte
  • Scorch:  bronze shimmer with silver micro-sparkle
  • Goldmine:  gold shimmer with gold micro-sparkle
  • Loaded:  dark green shimmer
  • Freak:  bright green shimmer   
  • Invasion:  deepest dark green matte 
  • Abyss:  bright metallic blue shimmer with blue micro-sparkle
  • Chaos:  vibrant cobalt blue matte with slight floating pearl
  • Ether:  pale smoky gray shimmer with purple and fuchsia micro-sparkle
  • Vice:   pearly red eggplant shimmer  
  • Cuff:  metallic silver shimmer with silver micro-sparkle   
UD Vault Porn:  Blacks, Grays & Browns
Previously exclusive colors:
  • Asphyxia:  pink/purple duochrome with blue sparkles
  • Smog:  copper shimmer
  • Mushroom:  metallic taupe-pewter shimmer
  • Uzi (reformulated):  dark gunmetal shimmer with silver micro-sparkle 
  • Hustle: metallic brown shimmer 
  • Whiskey:  rich brown matte
  • Corrupt:  dark metallic reddish brown shimmer with silver micro-sparkle 
  • Junkie:  metallic teal shimmer with gold micro-sparkle 
  • Mainline:  deep green to blue matte 
  • Deep End:  bright blue/green shimmer
  • LSD:  navy shimmer with bright turquoise micro-sparkle
  • Sabbath:  deep navy matte
  • Delinquent:  dark purple shimmer with light purple micro-sparkle 
  • Psychedelic Sister:  bright purple cream
  • Empire:  dark eggplant matte  
UD Vault Porn:  Browns, Golds & Greens
Discontinued colors:
  • 1999:  reddish plum with gold, plum, and bronze shimmer
  • Binge:  navy blue with pearl sheen
  • Covet:  blue-green teal with pearl sheen
  • Crash:  eggplant with plum pearl sheen
  • Deviant:  medium blue with silver micro-sparkle
  • Eldorado:  medium yellow gold shimmer
  • Flipside:  medium teal blue shimmer
  • Graffiti:  grass green with silver micro-sparkle
  • Gunmetal:  dark gray with pearl sheen
  • Lucky:  dark copper with metallic finish
  • Lust:  dark purple with pearl sheen
  • Ransom:  dark purple with pearl sheen
UD Vault Porn:  Greens & Blues
UD Vault Porn:  Purples, Pinks, Silver & White
I have no idea how many of these limited edition sets were released.  Supposedly 50 were sold at the Urban Decay site and then they were going to have some for Sephora (where I got mine) and perhaps some other retail sites(?), but it's all rather fuzzy.  The retail price was $295, which translates to about $7.37 a pencil, which is quite the steal if you can get past the hefty upfront price.

Fortunately, I found a place to store the box with the pencils in it so that I can have easy access.  This hutch is right next to the table where I apply my makeup, and it was just tall enough to accommodate the lid.  Expect to see lots of upcoming Urban Decay 24/7 eyeliner posts as I play around with these!
The Shrine :-)
Disclaimer:  I purchased this.

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Tuesday, April 23, 2013

April Birchbox: Tiny Tweaks, Big Results

Birchbox teamed up with Women's Health for the April box, themed "Tiny tweaks, big results".  I usually try not to look at spoilers as I like the surprise element, but my box was a bit later than usual this month and I got impatient and peeked.  Luckily,  I liked everything I saw!
This months box contained a face mattifier, a body oil, an eye moisturizer, a hair serum, and body moisturizer.  Nice assortment and the samples are generously sized, which is always appreciated.
I've got oily skin, and now that the weather is getting warmer, it's producing even more oil.  I've heard good things about Youngblood Mineral Cosmetics but haven't tried anything from them before, and the Anti-Shine Mattifier is a new product just released for spring.  Excited to try this!  Sample value is $7.20.

The Nexxus Youth Renewing Rejuvenating Elixir is supposed to help with dry hair and age related breakage.  I've accumulated quite the stash of hair serum samples but always have room for more.  Sample value is $3.

The Caudalie Divine Oil is a dry oil that can be used on body, hair, or cuticles.  It smells really nice, no doubt due to the notes of Moroccan and Bulgarian rose, grapefruit, vanilla, and subtle floral undertones.  Sample value is $1.46.

I love receiving eye creams and the StriVectin-SD Eye Concentrate is not one I've tried before.  Wrinkles, I've got a few.  I don't expect a cream to erase them, but I do hope that using one will help them to multiply more slowly.  Sample value is $16.

There were also 3 packets of Wella body lotions in the scents of Pomegranate, Wild Rose, and Sea Buckthorn.  These come in so hand when traveling and I'll probably save them for my next trip.  Sample value is .94 cents.

Also included was a mail-in card to get a free subscription to Women's Health, which is a $9.99 value.  Excellent!  The value of the box without the magazine subscription is $28.60, well above my $10 subscription fee.  Well done, Birchbox and Women's Health!

Disclaimer:  I subscribe to Birchbox for $10/month.

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Monday, April 22, 2013

Buxom Athens and Monica Travel in Style Duo

I've said it before but I'm going on record:  Buxom makes my favorite lip glosses.  I've been using them for years and have an extensive collection, and they perform the best for me in terms of moisturizing my lips while providing gloss and color.  Any time I see colors I do not own on sale, I try to snap them up.
'Nuff Said
That's how I acquired the Travel in Style duo of mini sized lip stick Athens and lip gloss Monica.  I believe I got them last year from Sephora's sale section, and they've been sitting in their box waiting for warm weather.  Now that's spring has arrived, they've been getting lots of use!
I tend towards orange/peach/pink colors, so it's no surprise that I love these two.  Athens is an orange leaning coral matte lipstick while Monica provides a lovely golden peach shimmer on top.  I do find that Athens, like most matte finishes, emphasizes any potential lip dryness or roughness, but a good lip scrub prior to use helps in that area.  Athens does apply smoothly and I do not find it drying, so that's a plus.
Monica is the standout for me, though, as I prefer a shiny lip with some shimmer.  The two together make for a lovely spring color duo that wears a good 4-5 hours if I'm not eating or drinking something (which I usually am). 
You can still find the Travel in Style duo online at Amazon for about $20. 

Disclaimer:  I purchased this.

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