Thursday, October 31, 2013

Estee Lauder Delectable Lacquers Gift Set

Disclaimer:  I purchased this.
Yesterday I showed you the Estee Lauder Color Portfolio, but now let me show you the Delectable Lacquers gift set.  I've got a few Estee Lauder polishes that must be at least 17 years old that I got in a holiday set.  I remembered the quality being good and one of the colors is a gorgeous duochrome, which was pretty cutting edge at the time!
Black Plum, Smashed, Fallen Angel, So Vain
Housed in a pretty and sturdy cardboard box with a magnetic closure, the Delectable Lacquers set contains 4 polishes ranging from vampy to classic.  I was especially attracted to the two purple shades, Black Plum and Smashed.
Black Plum
Black Plum is the color of Pinot Noir, which I noticed as I was drinking a glass while polishing my nails Tuesday night.  There is hint of shimmer in the bottle, but it's not really visible on the nail unless in bright light.  I'll have pictures in my Friday NOTD post.
Smashed, on the other hand, is similar in color but contains fuschia pink and royal blue shimmer.  Gorgeous.
Fallen Angel
We then go classic with Fallen Angel, a deep red creme, and neutral with So Vain, a light cocoa with a subtle gold shimmer.  
So Vain
Estee Lauder polishes are on the pricey side at $20 for a .33 oz. bottle, but this gift set is a more reasonable $27.50.  The bottles are smaller though  at .17 oz, which still works out to be a better price per ounce ($27.50 vs. $40 for roughly the same amount).  Overall, a nice little gift set for the polish lover, or you could keep it for yourself, which I obviously did :-)
Wishing everyone a safe and happy Halloween, and Lulu says trick or treat!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Estee Lauder LE Color Portfolio Palette: Get It If You Can!

Disclaimer:  I purchased this.
Estee Lauder has got some serious GWP's going on right now, and I took advantage of one at Bon Ton last week.  What enticed me was the LE Color Portfolio, valued at $275.  A Purchase with Purchase, it was $37.50 with any Estee Lauder purchase.  Since there was also a Gift with Purchase event going on, I figured why not stack deals?
The makeup gods must have been smiling on me, as when I selected my GWP, it added both the bold and subtle choices.  Not sure how to correct that without messing up my order, I left it alone and lo and behold, I was shipped both versions.  So let's look at the Color Portfolio that started this all, because it's gorgeous!
There are 30 eye shadows, and I've been impressed with the ones I've tried in the two days I've had this (namely the greens and purples).  I love the range of colors!
Fifteen lipsticks, and I can honestly see myself wearing all of these.  I'm not usually found of palettes that contain powder and cream products together, but the plastic overlay on each side seems to be doing a good job of keeping things tidy.  The overlays also contain the name of each shade, another plus.
I love Estee Lauder powder blushes, and if you haven't tried them, you're missing out.  They make my skin look better than it actually does.  I already own all of these, but I'm excited to have them all in one place now.  I mixed Sensuous Rose (2nd from top) with Pink Kiss (directly below) for a lovely color yesterday, which you can see in my FOTD photo below.
You also get two glosses and a double sided eye pencil (black/brown).  I feel the need for no other palettes now this holiday season!  The question is, can you find it anywhere now?  Bon Ton appears to have sold out of it, but my source for all things GWP, called GWP Addict, is showing a few retailers still carrying it.  I'd move fast if it appeals to you. 

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Not So Nude by stila

 Disclaimer:  I purchased this.
As cute as the little palettes that stila puts out are, I've resisted buying them.  I'd read various reviews that said the eye shadows were often not very pigmented and faded easily, so even they though were reasonably priced, I just never bit.  Until recently, when I finally decided the colors in the Not So Nude palette were calling to me.  So what did I think?
I took Not So Nude with me to a conference in Albuquerque last week, and I've got to say I enjoyed using it!  I love the convertible cheek/lip color Lily, to the point that I've ordered some of stila's other cream blushes.  The eye shadows are so so in quality and definitely need a bit of layering and building up to get a color impact, but then again, with nude in the title, I wasn't expecting bold color to begin with.  I like the natural but defined effect they gave my eyes, and as a bonus I was able to use Fawn as an brow filler. 
Lily gives me a nice glow and the finish is soft, not sticky at all.  My favorites and most used of the eye shadows are the flesh colored matte Buff and the soft taupe Fawn.  The matte shades in generally performed well, although there is some definite powder kick up when applying.  I was disappointed in Dolce, as it had poor pigmentation and was difficult to build up.  Barefoot looks lovely partnered with Urban Decay's now discontinued 24/7 eye pencil in 1999, as they contain similar colored shimmer bits.
Not So Nude is $20 and I used my birthday $10 Ulta coupon, making it a quite reasonable $10.  Do I feel compelled to start collecting these?  No, but I'm really glad I was able to discover how nice the convertible colors are! 

Monday, October 28, 2013

Tarte Thoughtful Treasures Best-Sellers Set

As we all know, holiday sets are being released willy nilly right now.  There are so many great values available, it makes it hard to chose!  The Tarte Thoughtful Treasures Best-Sellers Set is the first of the holiday offerings I've picked up, prompted by my fondness for the Amazonian clay blushes and that I just ran out of my Maracuja oil.  I reasoned I might as well kill two birds with one stone, as well as try out the LipSurgence Skintuitive lip tint in Energy.
Tarte's LipSurgence Skintuitive lip tint in Energy is supposed to deliver a personalized shade of pink by responding to your skin's natural pH level and energy.  Now, I'm not sure about the energy part, nor am I sure how different the shades of pink will be from person to person, but I do like the color it turns on me.  It's surprisingly vibrant on my lips considering how sheer the swatch is on my arm.
Energy has a strong peppermint scent and does contain peppermint oil, as well as other plant bionutrients, vitamins, and essential oils.  I found it comfortable, hydrating, glossy, and wear time was a respectable 3 hours or so.  The regular sized Energy goes for $24 for .1 ounce, so you are getting a little over half that size in the Thoughtful Treasures set, which is $19 for all three items.  Not bad.
Thankful is a new, limited addition color in the Amazonian clay blush family.  A coral leaning pink with a soft gold shimmer, Thankful is nicely pigmented and does indeed give me a healthy and rested appearance.  I do not get the 12-hour wear time these are touted for, but I do find they last a good 8 hours, which is good for my oily complexion.  Thankful is a smaller size than the regular Amazonian clay blushes (.053 oz vs. .2 oz), but I'm okay with that as I enjoy collecting these and will never make it through a full sized one in my lifetime :-)
Last, but not least, is the Maracuja oil.  Containing essential fatty acids and Vitamin C, this oil is supposed to help your skin be firmer, brighter, and smoother.  I like using a few drops of this at night as the last step in my skin care regime.  The last bottle I had was this same size and lasted me several months, so a little goes a long way.
I'm enjoying this little set and think it's a great deal at $19!

Friday, October 25, 2013

NOTD: Julep's Char, Nicolette and Payton

Julep's October mystery box was called the ZigZag, as it included a set of chevron nail stickers.  Ironically, the stickers were left out of the boxes and they had to mail them separately.  When I received mine last Friday, I decided to attempt a chevron design.  I was again reminded of why I suck at nail art, namely lack of patience for the time it takes to achieve anything of note.  Hence, what you see here is a very loose interpretation of the chevron look :-)
I used the inky blue Char as the base color, with Nicolette's white cream as my accent color.  I was watching a really cool documentary on comic book hero's and absentmindedly painted my entire right hand with Char, but I remedied that by doing a reverse accent on that hand.  I added the Kelly green  Payton as an outline between Char and Nicolette, but it wasn't opaque enough to really achieve what I was hoping for.  Oh well, I left it alone rather than potentially mess it up more.
I must have been in a preppy color mood, as these are a bit of an anomaly from the darker, moody coolers I've been featuring in the last month or so.  Maybe I was influenced by the wonderful crisp, cool weather we've been having.  Either way, I do like this color combo!  Nicolette was surprisingly easy to work with for a white polish, and Char had a nice formula as well.  With careful application, both could be one coaters, but I used two.
Char, Nicolette, Payton
 Linking up with The Nail Files hosted by Well Shut the Front Door!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

L'Oreal Colour Riche la Laque in I Lacque You A Lot

I Lacque You a Lot is the glossy version of the ColorRiche limited edition lipsticks and liners from L'Oreal.  I was recently able to find a display of both the matte and glossy versions at half off and picked up one of each to try out.  I loved the color of the matte version I reviewed yesterday, but was not crazy about how they felt on.  I'm happy to say the glossy version feels much better!
I Lacque You a Lot
A bright orange red, I Lacque You a Lot is not for the faint of heart.  It's wearable though, and now that I've mostly overcome my fear of wearing bold colors, I quite enjoyed it.  The pigmentation is wonderful, it was comfortable and slightly hydrating on, and the wear time was 4-5 hours sans eating.  The biggest drawback I'm finding with wearing bold lipsticks is that I invariably get some on my chin when I'm eating, so I need to make sure I check a mirror before venturing out again. I guess that's why women carry mirrored compacts in their purses :-)
I look ghostly pale, don't I?
I liked the la Laque version of these enough that I picked up another color, Never Lacque-ing, on my way home from work last week.  There were only a few left, so if you are interested in these I'd check now, as they seem to be disappearing.  It will be interesting to see if L'Oreal brings them back or if they are truly limited edition items.  I found mine at Rite Aid.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

L'Oreal Colour Riche le Matte: She's So Matte

She's So Matte, Lacque You A Lot
Disclaimer:  I purchased this.
Another 50% off display at Rite Aid enticed me, this time the L'Oreal Colour Riche le Matte and la Lacque lipstick and liner in one.  Today I've got She's So Matte (408) to show you.
She's So Matte
Housed in a long, thin swivel up tube, She's So Matte is a gorgeous coral pink that lays down lots of color with a matte finish.  The thinner tip does make this easier to both fill in and line lips, at least for now.  Not so sure about when the tip gets rounded down...
I loved the look of She's So Matte, but the feel of it on my lips had me a little antsy.  I'm very sensitive to dry feeling lips, and matte lipsticks are notorious for making your lips dry.  While I didn't feel She's So Matte made my lips look dry or flaky, it did make them feel dry.  When I went to reapply after lunch, I broke down and put balm on top.  Still pretty, but not matte anymore :-)
So, the pros are that the pigmentation is great and I like the finished look, and the con is that le Matte does indeed make my lips feel chapped.  I saw another blog that compared these limited edition lippies to Tom Ford's lipsticks.  Now, I don't know if that kind of crazy talk is true or not  as I've never even been in the vicinity of a Tom Ford lipstick, but if so....you may want to track these down before they disappear. 
Considering they are half off at Rite Aid right now, sounds like that could be soon (regularly $7.99, on sale for $3.99).  I like this color enough that I'll be wearing it regardless of the dry feel, although I'm sure I'll break down and shine it up with some balm :-)  Tomorrow I'll show you the bold Lacque You A Lot.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Mattify! Cosmetics: Harmony Blush and Earth Angel Eyeshadow Review

Disclaimer:  Products provided for review.
All opinions are my own. 
Mattify! Cosmetics specializes in making products for oily skin.  Yesterday I reviewed their face powders, but today we'll be looking at a blush and eyeshadow from their collection:  Harmony and Earth Angel.  Oily skin can decrease the wear time of most makeup products, leading to fading and breakdown long before you are through with your day or night.  Other than lip gloss, I'm not one to bring makeup with me to do touchups.  So, anything that purports to be long wearing is going to appeal to me! 
Mattify blushes contain the same ingredients as their face powders, namely oil absorbing Kaolin clay, cornstarch, silica spheres, rice powder, and titanium dioxide.  Available in 3 colors, Harmony, Strawberry Wine, and Terra Cotta, I chose Harmony ($14) to try out.  The description said it provides just a barely-there hint of color to help brighten your complexion, making it best for those with fair complexions.
Harmony blush
Harmony is finely milled and applies smoothly.  I did not find that it looked powdery on, and it gave just enough color to make a nice neutral blush for when I'm emphasizing a bolder lip or eye look, or just want a natural look.  I'd say the main limitation of the blushes are that there are only 3 available shades at this point.
Earth Angel is also billed as long lasting, containing the same oil absorbing  Kaolin clay mixture as the other Mattify products.  Shadows definitely crease on me without an eye primer, and sometimes even with one.  If I can get through an 8 hour period without my shadows creasing, I'm doing well. So, to have a shadow with oil absorbing qualities....well, I'm guessing you know how I feel about that :-)  Mattify claims that you do not need to use a primer with their shadows, but I did out of habit.  Regardless, Earth Angel wore quite well without creasing.
I chose a neutral color as those are the ones I wear the most, and Earth Angel ($4.99) is described as a neutral champagne tone to brighten and warm any complexion.  It has a lovely shimmer and makes for a nice topper over other shadows, adding both shimmer and complexity without looking frosty.  I found it very versatile!  Mattify shadows can also be used wet for more intense color or as a liner and are safe for lip use as well.  There are a variety of colors available, which you can view here.
Overall, quite pleased with both Earth Angel and Harmony, and glad to have been introduced to Mattify! Cosmetics:-)