Thursday, June 29, 2017

Some Coastal Scents Swatches

About a year ago I purchased a set of Coastal Scents shadows, one shimmer and a couple of mattes. I was seriously unimpressed with what I received and ended up decluttering all of them. That set included Elven Gold, Paprika, Oktoberfest, Coconut Husk, Chamois Nude, and Oatmeal Tan. Elven Gold was a really boring color, and all the mattes excluding Chamois Nude (which I found patchy) ended up reading very similar on the skin.

For some reason, I ended back on Coastal Scents' site and saw they had another sale, with each hot pot 99 cents.  Doing a bit more research, and especially after viewing Lauren Mae Beauty's recent video on the shadows, I found I was better off buying their shimmers.

I received them and swatched them today. After this purchase, I definitely would buy again from Coastal Scents, though not anytime soon. My z-palette is currently full up and I simply do not have any room.

From top to bottom we have: Dark Goldenrod (my favorite), Panama Rose (second favorite), Peach, Georgia Peach, and Victorian Pear.

I still think I could have selected better shadows over all, as Victorian Pear is a little lackluster, even though it appears to have good color payoff. I tried to use it as a crease shade but on the skin, even with primer, it did not show up as a subtle shadow, as I had hoped. 

Lastly, I did write a lengthy rambling on my "quest" for the perfect purple shimmer, and I think I have finally found it. I did write about how ABH Rosette was still a little too red for me, and that Inglot shade was a total, unpigmented, poor formula (hard pan almost instantly) disaster. Well, please see below, the right shade. 

Here I have the Inglot shade, heavily built up (even though it does not appear so), next to one swipe of Panama Rose. I very much look forward to wearing it! 

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Thoughts on Colourpop's Yes Please Palette (not a product review)

Currently out of stock, limited edition. Restock to be announced.

This palette is an excellent deal, of $16.00. It is also highly rated, with a score of A- from Temptalia. It is also a dupe for a waaaaay more expensive palette, the Sunset Palette, from Natasha Denonona (sp?).

For me, I think this palette is smart and an excellent summer version of the Modern Renaissance.Take a look:

 I love the bright yellow matte and orange shimmer, especially, and feel that I don't really have anything like that in my collection.

What is deterring me, however, are three things:
1.) I am seeing a lot of shimmers that I already do have in my z-palette.
2.) Aside from the yellow and tangerine, some of these colors can be substituted with the Modern Renaissance.
3.) A few days ago I placed an order with Coastal Scents that included the following:
Georgia Peach


 Dark Goldenrod

and Pumpkin Pie

Now, I did not plan on duping the Colour Pop palette, but I've found that the actual swatches of Coastal Scents shadows read a lot warmer than what is presented on the site (the above pictures). I do think that if I have these shadows, there's no need for the Colour Pop palette, and if I really wanted to, I should just find a good quality single of the yellow.

Now, if you did not already own any warm/sunny palettes, I see no problem with buying the Colour Pop one. Great deal, nice quality, and hopefully Colour Pop will make it a permanent part of their line.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Lip Products: Collection and Declutter

Today I am going to go over my collection of lip products. I did not think my collection was overwhelming, but I did notice I was holding onto products that I never use.

 Let's begin first with my three favorite traditional lipsticks, all from the Maybelline Color Sensational line. From left to right, the colors are Grey Over It, Touchable Taupe, and Sin-a-Mon.

Swatched from left to right is Covergirl Melting Pout in "Gelebrity." After we have Grey Over It, a matte finish, both normal application and then blended out, Touchable Taupe, and Sin-a-Mon, both with a satin finish. All lipsticks (not the Covergirl gloss) are one swipe. 

What I love about these lipsticks is that they blend in and wear naturally, and is super flattering for me. Even Grey Over It, which is-as the name suggests- a strong grey leaning-taupe, is a bit jarring on first application, it blends into the skin. This is a fantastic line, especially from the drugstore, and I have no desire to declutter them. 

Next, we have more of my lipstick collection:

From l-r, we have Liquid Courage Cosmetics Liquid Lipstick in Plum It Up, Mellow Cosmetics Matte Lipstick in Nude, Buxom Lipstick in Dolly, a Bite Beauty Holidy duo in Bronze/Pepper, a Covergirl Star Wars lipstick in 70, a Smashbox Lipstick in Victorious (I think- it's a bright fuschia), and two lip liners from both Bite Beauty and Ofra (keeping both).

The Liquid Courage Cosmetics lipstick I got in a duo from Ipsy, and I regret buying it. I held onto this one longer than the other one because I thought this one had an interesting formula (sparkles), but neither are worth it. I hate matte liquid lipstick, and this one never even dried down. It was sticky. Decluttered.

The Mellow lipstick was much sought after by me, as I got it with Ipsy points (when you could still buy things with Ipsy points), after I received the other option- the bright blood orange shade- in my glambag. That was when I first suspected that something was up with the point system and not being able to choose which shade I wanted, even though I filled out the survey and blah blah blah. Something about artificially creating a "need" for a product. Anyway, the lipstick is a nice rose brown, that is matte but comfortable and wearable. The smell of it also reminds me of marshmallows. Keeping.

Buxom in Dolly. This was a blind purchase from TJ Maxx, and one of my best.  A cool leaning neutral rose, with a satin finish. It has a comfortable, long-wearing formula, and I dread running out of it. Keeping.

Bite Holiday Duo in Bronze/Pepper. Pepper is a little too warm for me, but I am keeping it. The star of the show is Bronze- a shimmering balm that lasts forever and is super comfortable. It is much more comfortable than the pearl gloss that I reviewed a while back. Instead of those, Bite should have come out with a lipstick version. I also do not look forward to running out of bronze. Keeping.

Covergirl Lipstick in "70" (Star Wars). At first I was going to hold onto it because I thought it could be a dupe for Bronze. But not quite. The formula is runnier, the shade is more pink, and the shimmer sheers out. I also really do not like the scent of Covergirl lipsticks. Decluttered.

Smashbox Lipstick. This was a gift from one of my friends, so I am not decluttering it. I wish I had more opportunities to wear it- it is a cool-toned dark magenta.

I will also be keeping the two liners.

Let's move on to glosses/balms:
From left-right:
I will be keeping the Trust Fund Beauty Gloss. It is comfortable with a nice tint of color, but I should say that the smell is awful- like acrylic paint.

I will not be keeping the Smashbox Insta-matte lipstick transformer. I don't think it does that great of a job, and it feels too much like the silicone-primer . I don't actually like Smashbox as a brand too much, I've found. Decluttered.

Bite Beauty Pearl Thing: I've reviewed this before. It is not worth its price tag, and I am confident this line will be marked down in the near future. However, it is a beautiful product that I will wear more in the fall/winter.

Maybelline Melting Pout "Gel Lipstick" in Gelebrity. First off, I really love the formula of this. I bought this on a whim, selecting the brown color, and it was very flattering. However, I ended up popping off the applicator because I had to squeeze it through pretty hard and it was very difficult. Now I just apply it with a brush. Keeping.

Purlisse is a brand that learned of through Ipsy. Not really impressed with the quality of the gloss. Will continue to use, but would never repurchase.

Skin Fix Balm. Another buy in which I had done no research whatsoever. I love this. I would have probably bought the unscented one, but Vanilla Mint is not unpleasant. Keeping.

Also keeping the Korres Greek Yogurt Lip Cooler in Framboise. So this is an exfoliator and a hydrator. It was originally sold for about $20, but I bought it at TJ Maxx for $5.00. When I bought it, I did not know what to expect. It does exfoliate the lips, but it also has a cooling metal ball on the applicator. I actually like it a lot (would not pay $20 for it thought), and use it in the mornings before applying makeup. Keeping!

So next is an odd product- Hard Candy has a lip primer- dual-ended for both creme and gloss products. I am currently testing this out, but so far I have noticed that it creates a sticky base for products and does prolong the durability of them. I have not tested a variety of products, only lipstick. For now, I am keeping.

Okay, so last I've got two of the same shade from MUA Makeup Academy. I've reviewed the Color Drenched Lip Butter in the past, and I still love it and use it. It is in the shade Honey, and I bought a back-up.

The second product from MUA I will be decluttering. It is Extreme Shimmer Lipstick in Soft Rose. I think MUA does a poor job of picking color samples- as they do not accurately depict the color of the actual product. Soft Rose is way too pink for me, and it is not flattering.

Last is a product I have almost completed- Nyx Butter Lipstick in Pops. I am keeping!

Below I have my decluttered items, as well as swatches of some of them:
The top two shimmers are a comparison between Bronze and and 70 (Covergirl). I had hoped they would be dupes but they are not.

The three pink shades from top to bottom are- Soft Rose, the Smashbox Shade (for reference) and Plum It Up.

Final thoughts:

My love of brown lipstick is not going anywhere. I love cool-tones and shimmer. Ipsy is not trustworthy with lip products.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Birthday Post: Game Changers

Today I am feeling extra retrospective. It is my 26th, after all. I would say it has been almost two years since I have gotten into makeup, so today I want to discuss the makeup milestones- or game-changers, as it were.

For me, game-changers are both positive and negative. They have helped me develop insight into technique, aesthetics, and spending. Please read below for my TOP FIVE GAME-CHANGING PRODUCTS. And here's to birthdays.

1. The Modern Renaissance Palette.

Okay, okay. On the off-chance anyone is actually reading this, you've probably heard of this palette. And all of the glowing reviews. And the hype. I will be honest, is this palette perfect? No, of course not. But it is smart. It is excellent. My last higher-end palette was the Nude 'Tude Palette from TheBalm, which was boring and uninspiring. And the MR palette brought to my attention the concept of "neutral" colors, and using brights subtly. As of now, I have panned Tempera, the cream-colored shade, and I tend to cycle through different mattes, based on my mood. I have purchased single matte dupes from indie and drugstore brands in anticipation of the palette running out. I love it.

2. Kat Von D Innerstellar and Chrysalis Palette. These palettes taught me to calm the eff down when it comes to purchases. I have decluttered both, after depotting the few matte shades that I loved. I hate KvD's shimmers in palettes- never have tried her singles. I got both half price at TJ Maxx's, because it was a high end brand for cheap. That is it. And ever since the laborious decluttering process (she certainly makes it difficult to de-pot), I have been able to resist products like Too Faced tin palettes, and Make Up Forever palettes, etc. etc. successfully.

3. Physician's Formula Eye Booster Serum Eye Liner thing- A game-changer because eyeliner always caused anxiety for me. Aside from very few pencil liners, most would leak by the end of the day, and application was always tricky. For me this has made my life so much easier, and I dread eyeliner less now.

4. Dry Shampoo. I am throwing this category of products in here, with no reference to a specific one. I have tried tons of different brands and the only one I hated was the Aussie brand dry shampoo because the smell was awful. My hair gets oily rather quickly, so rather than feel the pressure to wash my hair every day, I can spray some dry shampoo and go. Easy.

5.  Fyrinnae Pixie Epoxy. A few weeks ago, I read a post criticizing the vast amount of products it seemingly takes in this day and age to make eyeshadow work. The writer explained that before eyeshadow would be made so priming was not necessary. Do I believe this? Not really. I think technology has improved, and yes there are huge mark-ups in the makeup industry, but from what I remember emphasis on pigmentation and opacity is a relatively current trend. With this in mind, I am a big fan of Pixie Epoxy. I was critical, like many others, that one had to buy another product to make their products work, but then I saw that this could be used with everything. And really intensify shadows that do lack pigmentation. Another benefit is that eyeshadow used to transfer from my lid to my crease, due to the fact that my eyes bulge. With Pixie Epoxy, (as well as Too Faced Glitter Insurance, which I used if the shadow is opaque enough already), the shadow does not budge.

And here's an extra one!

6.) Brown-toned lipstick. I am inspired by a post I just read by Brutally Honest Beauty on brown lipstick. My mother used to love brown-toned lipstick in the 90's and early 00's, so I would use it. And for the last year, I've only been wearing brown toned lipstick: Sin-a-mon and Touchable Taupe, both from Maybelline's Color Sensational line. It is flattering, natural looking on me.

In sum:
My gamechangers are gamechangers because they make my life easier. And when it comes to makeup, it should not be stressful. It is just makeup, after all.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

June Favorites and Regrets

As June is nearing its last week, I thought I would share my favorites and regrets for this month. 


1.) Milani Strobelight in Afterglow. I purchased this having read Temptalia's glowing review of this highlighter, and the fact that it is a dupe for the Makeup Forever Profusion $30 less. It is a gorgeous product, with a very intense cool-toned reflect. 

2.) Flower Beauty Blush in Sweat Pea. For me, this is a really easy to use, low maintenance blush. One swipe gives just enough color. 

3.) Shiseido Oil-Free Bronzer in 1 Light. I bought this from Amazon at $10, partly because my Butter Bronzer from Physician's Formula shattered in my bag. It is a little more red-toned than the butter bronzer, and long lasting. 

From top to bottom: Proton, Shi. Bronzer, Milani Strobelight, and Flower Blush.

4.) Life's Entropy cream contour stick in Proton. Speaking of easy, this product also gives me a nice and subtle contour with minimal effort, perfect for my morning routine. It's a nice grey-toned taupe. I wish it was a tad bit darker, but perhaps this will be even better for the winter. 

5.) Elf blending eyebrush. Blending eye brushes are important, but many times they are too large. I was really happy to find this brush because it is smaller, and I can be more precise and have more control over blending. 

6.) June Sephora gift, Caudalie duo. I chose this over the Tarte gift, which included the lip paint, which I am not a fan of. This is a nice skin care duo, and yes the smell of the product is rather earthy (actually reminds me of Demeter's Thunderstorm), I don't mind it. I would never buy full size of either product, but I don't mind them.


1.) Holika Holika Gudetama makeup sponge. This was not a total fail, but it was a disappointment. As soon as I opened the packaging, I could smell a sweet fragrance coming from the sponge. I was eager to try it out, so- just as I do with every sponge- I dampened it by running it under the sink. Immediately it soaked up the water, foamed up, I squeezed out whatever was making the bubbles, and then the scent was gone. Not entirely sure what happened. Not only that, but the sponge itself is very dense, and not as pleasant to use as my ecotools ones. Still, because I love Gudetama, I still keep it to look at! 

 2. Just the Basics Facial Towelettes. I used to buy the Simple Miscellar Water wipes, but those are very expensive. Instead, I purchased these and soak them in miscellar water before using. Still, I really hate the fragrance of these wipes and wish they were even more basic and simply unscented.

3. L'Oreal Infallible pro-matte foundation. Dries waaaay too quickly. Color is slightly too pink for me, but now I just use this is a spot concealer.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

The Quest for Purple Eyeshadow

Ever since I anti-hauled the Coloured Raine (CR) Queen of Hearts palette, I concluded that the allure of the palette could be boiled down to one shadow, which was not not sold by CR as a single. This single shadow is called Noblewoman, described by CR as a "Metallic Burgundy with Purple Undertones." 
It is the purple shimmer in the middle of the second column. And I wanted it. I've wanted a mid-tone metallic purple for some reason for the longest time, but I was not going to buy a palette to get it. I've been through a lot of purple shadows since, and today I am going to review them for you. 

Before I explain to you my findings, I want to agree with the consensus about purple eyeshadow. It is notoriously difficult to get right. Please see here for a more thorough explanation. 

This is Inglot #445. I am going to keep this shadow, but I do want to say that I was incredibly disappointed. It seemed to be what I wanted- a midtoned purple, not too red and not too blue, from a brand known for its excellent quality. You do see the hard pan, right? Hard pan- though not as extensive as shown in the picture- began with the first moment I swatched it. It performs better on the eye, but I do have to load up the brush and use a sticky base. Furthermore, it is simply not pigmented enough. 

This lovely shade is Rosette, by ABH. It is reported by Temptalia as a dupe for CR Noblewoman, and I am enjoying it so far. It has a strong red base, and the shadow is very long lasting on the eyes. It is not exactly what I hoped for as it is a tad too red, but I do enjoy it. I know I am being too picky. 

These three pictures of my arm are the rest of the purple shadows I own. From left-right:
1) Nepenthe by Fyrinnae, 2) Rosette by ABH 3) 445 Pearl from Inglot 4) BH Cosmetics Foil Palette 1 single 5) Dose of Colors Lavender Honey 6) Dose of Colors Blueberry Swirl 7-8) Two shades from the Floriculture Palette by Tarina Tarantino. 

After seeing my swatches, I do think that my favorite is Nepenthe, by Fyrinnae. I have swatched it without primer or Pixie Epoxy, but it still looks beautiful. I do wish that there was a pressed single version of it out there, because I think it strikes a perfect balance between blue and red.

To wrap up, I've been having a bit of a hang-up with purple shadows, and something about the pressed formula makes it tricky. Loose and/or wet formulas seem to have a better time with it.

Thanks for reading!

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Eyeshadow Single Review: Ardency Inn Pigment in "Rose Gold"

So the official name for this shadow is Modster Manuka Honey Enriched Pigments. I have been eyeing Rose Gold for a couple of months already, because I love the almost duochrome quality to the eyeshadow, as it reads purple/copper/gold. I've been hesitant in purchasing it, however, because it's $21 for 1.7 g of product.

One one hand, the quality of the eyeshadow is top-notch, and a little goes a long way. On the other hand, $21. That's 1/2 or 2/3 of a palette.

Would I still recommend purchasing this? If the price-tag does is feasible, sure. The benefit of having single shadows is that you don't have to deal with shadows in a palette that are sub-par/not usable. You can select one beautiful shade that you will use time and again.

That certainly applies when it comes to Rose Gold. It is creamy, incredibly pigmented, and blends out beautifully and easily. It's color is wearable, but complex and flattering.

Some say that Amber Rush from L'Oreal is a dupe, but that is not true at all. Please see the pictures below:
Rose Gold (l), Amber Rush (r)

Amber rush (l), Rose Gold (r)

As with my last picture especially, one can see how Amber Rush is a lighter copper with a frosted  effect. Rose Gold is metallic as well, but has a different kind of reflect entirely.

Overall, I know I spent entirely too much on this eyeshadow, but I love it. I've been wearing it days on end. I give it 4 1/2 stars ,

Monday, June 5, 2017

May Favorites and Regrets

This month has been an interesting one for makeup. I made numerous purchases and want to share with you my findings.

The top products for me of the month have been:

1) The Ordinary Serum Foundation.
My skin drinks this foundation up, and I am left with a natural finish. The only drawback I can think of is the fact that it contains no SPF.

2) The Ordinary Retinoid 2 %
You can read my review of this here. This is a stand-out for this month as I have seen instant results.

3) Nyx Eyebrow Shaper. This is a product that I have been using at the end of April throughout all of May, and even though it is a simple thing- a clear wax crayon- it is perfect for me. I don't do anything really with my brows, aside from plucking them once in a while, so this simply allows me to shape my brows while keeping my hair in place. It is one of those things I don't even have to think about using.

4.) Fyrinnae eyeshadows in: Wicked Faeries and Serendipity. I am really glad I bought these two. They are interesting, glamorous, and yet work-appropriate.

5.) Fyrinnae Pixie Epoxy. Something I use now with all my shadows.

6.) L'Oreal Infallible Setting spray: My favorite of all my setting sprays at the moment. I also have the Pixi make-up fix mist, as well as the WnW one. I love the mist and formula of this one.

 Products that both had positives and negatives:

1.) Physician's Formula Butter Bronzer. So...I love the formula and scent of this bronzer. However, you'd think bulky packaging would also be sturdy, right? WRONG. This thing shattered in my bag. I've repressed it, but it's original pattern is gone, and the compact is rather messy now :( .

2.) WnW Highlighters in Boozy Brunch and Precious Petals. These two are GORGEOUS highlighters, with excellent pigmentation, unique tones, and visually appealing designs. There is nothing else quite like them at the drugstore. That being said, they are a tad too dark for me, and I have too be very careful with application so that I can still use and enjoy them. I mean, I wanted them in my collection, and I figured they would not be the best match, so I just can't go ham with them.

3.) L'Oreal Voluminous, Original Mascara in Carbon Black, curved brush. SO. I did not read the label at the store and walked away with the "curved brush," which is not the worst. I don't know what the regular one is like, but I actually like the curved wand, as well as the formula to this. It does not flake, but it does deposit too much product on the wand, so wiping some off into the container is a necessity.


4.) Fyrinnae eyeshadow: Lady Glamis. This was my only dud from my Fyrinnae purchases. It looked nothing like the swatches on the site. Even after getting the hang of using Pixie Epoxy the cloudy grey base of Lady Glamis was still super predominant.

5.) Kat Von D high-voltage eyeshadow primer. No. No. I can't say enough how much I did not like this primer.

6.) Tarteist lip paint in Rose- The formula was a lot lighter than other liquid lips that I've tried, but I just don't like the overall effect. The color was not flattering for me, either. Too warm.

7.) The Organic Pharmacy Eye and Lip Cream: Every time I use this before I go to bed, my eyes are crusty and swollen in the morning. Pass.

So that's it for the month of May! Next month I will have some Inglot shadows, as well as indie cream contour to talk about!

Friday, June 2, 2017

Decluttering Files, pt 3

Hello again! I have some items I recently decluttered, along with some mini-reviews of each of them.

I. Colourpop supershock shadow in Wattles. This shadow is very nice quality, and lasts forever. It is a mauve with subtle bluish shimmer (barely shows up). Though it took me a while, I am decluttering this because I never wear it. I don't know why, but when I wear this on my lid I look sick, and to put this in my crease seems like too much work.

II. Pacifica Island Life palette, from Ipsy bag. I was really excited to get this because it is a great emergency palette. The only really pigmented shade is the mid-toned brown, a rich metallic brown. All the other ones fade rather easily. The formula is very creamy, save for the darkest brown one which is a bit powdery. For me, I am not using this because I do have all these colors already.

III. It Cosmetics Superhero mascara, sample sized from Ipsy bag.  I am pretty sure it is expired because the formula has dried a bit. When  did use this, it flaked a bit.

IV. Tarteist liquid lipstick/paint in rose. Not the color for me and not flattering. Received in Ipsy bag.

V. Stila eyeshadow in Citrine. I don't know why I bought this. It is not the same shadow I thought it would be. It is almost a wet formula, light orange color, and heavy shimmer. It is just not my cup of tea. I did depot it from the single compact though, because it does come with a magnet, which may come in handy for travel and for other powders.

VI. Kat Von D high voltage eyeshadow primer. It did a decent enough job with the swatches below, but 1) the yellow color shows through some shadows, and 2) the smell is quite strong. I have other primers in my collection and do not need this.

Mixing Fyrinnae Shadows

I have a couple of posts for today, but this one is particular was unplanned. I was going through my stash, intending to declutter, when I came across a Fyrinnae eyeshadow called Zanzibar, a highly pigmented bright light blue shade. Though I cannot and will not wear blue eyeshadow, I did not want to declutter it.

So I got an idea.

Maybe I could mix it with another Fyrinnae shadow and change the color?

And that is what I did. I mixed Zanzibar with a rich gold eyeshadow named Gilded Wings, and this is the final product:
"Zanzibar" on left, Gilded Wings on right

So there it is! Green eyeshadow is far more wearable for me, and I am glad that  the product was not a total waste.

Next time you have some Fyrinnae samples that you were not planning on using, I would suggest you try mixing them together, especially if they are of similar formulas!

5 Products I Did Not Expect to Love

This title might seem a bit weird because why would somebody buy something not expecting to enjoy using it? But allow me to explain. Eit...