Tuesday, August 29, 2017

TMO: ALL of the Nyx Element Palettes

In the spirit of the anti-haul, we are continuing down the road of bashing things we don't need to buy.

Let me get this straight, though. I love the IDEA of this series. I love THEMED products, there's a story to them that the user can infer from the product. It's cute.

It's also eyeshadow. And just like ones horoscope, it's important that we don't mold ourselves to objects we think represent us, but rather be able to choose on our accord. Or rather, abstain from depending entirely upon objects to define us at all.

I don't know how that applies to these palettes. I'm feeling quite philosophical.

Any fan of Avatar, the Last Airbender, Pokemon, Captain Planet, or anyone who thinks horoscopes are fun, and who also likes makeup are going to like these palettes.

! Let's start. All images were reprinted in Allure magazine, from Nyx's own snapchat. I've put the link to the Allure article here. You can click on the images to get a closer look.

1. The Water Palette:
So these are quite muted blues. I am quite disappointed in the two shadows in the second row, one is slightly bluer than the one to its right. We also have two robins-egg blues, and two cool-toned browns. I do think the color selection is okay, but matte blues may be patchy. I don't see them done well often. And the repeating colors just seems like a waste. Not being a fan of blue eyeshadow myself, I know I would not get any looks from this. Pass. 

2. The Fire Palette
Yes, Please palette, is that you? Hah. Again, a lot of repetition, and I'm not sure why. Two salmons? Three? Two yellows, one slightly yellow-er than the other? I know that duochrome will call to people, but that literally is the duochrome one can find in the Wet n Wild Comfort Zone palette. It's very popular nowadays. Pass. 

3. The Metal Palette

Just as much as I hate black and white palettes, I hate all-shimmer palettes. It's overwhelming. Also, I don't appreciate that I need to bring another palette in to use it. I'd like a choice, dammit! But still, unless some of these are duochrome, I can't see the appeal. There is so much repetition among shades- coppery red, two light blues, two lavenders- either the palettes should have been smaller, or they could have really amped it up. 

4. The Air Palette

Are you Tea Mair? Lol. But seriously, pastels died with the Lorac Brunch Palette. No way Nyx is gonna get these chalky shades right. And what is up with all the salmon???

5. The Wind Palette

I love that Allure advertises this palette by saying it's a good alternative to the Naked Smokey, when I just denounced it. Officially. Buh-bye. 

Yeah so anyway, this palette. You could use any of those FIVE greys on the eye and I could not tell you which one it is. Noooooo. 

6. The Earth Palette

So, out of all 6, this is the one I am most drawn to. However, I can't deny that the same issues are here. Repeating colors. Not a whole lot of inspiration. And I am still using the Modern Renaissance, which has lovely reds and deep pinks. So, not needed. 

7. The collection as a whole: These remind me of the Sleek palettes, and like Pokemon, are singular enough to invite more than one purchase. Big trouble.

 I don't know what the price of these will be, but scrolling through Nyx's website, I see that palettes range from $10-$20. Seeing as these are on the smaller side, but with non-standard packaging, these might go for $10-$15. 

So, buying up all of them could cost you. I would heavily caution buying up more than one, or one at all, because additionally, I am not sure what the formula will be like. I have only owned had one experience with Nyx eyeshadow, from their mini collab with Ipsy, and they were okay. I ended up decluttering it, though, because I never used it. 

Overall, I am just seeing a lot of repetition. It's almost like Nyx is taunting you to buy more than one, because if you do get one, you're going to get the same looks over and over. 

It's a trap, I tell you! An oddly salmon-toned trap. 

I think part of the problem is dedicating each palette its own element, which can be quite limiting. Let's compare this collection to an old product, the Sephora + Pantone Elemental Energy palette. I found in image from this review, by Beauty Crazed:
Though I never had a chance to see how this palette works, I think the concept- similar to the Nyx collection, is executed much better. Interesting textures and finises- but still, a lot of useless browns. 
For a collection of all the elements, it still reads quite dull. 

The thing is, when you are marketing a product an encompassing a theme, anything really can be shoehorned into a theme. Jerrod Blandino keeps doing that with the Peach Palette- and how all of the colors represent different parts of a peach. Sure! I wouldn't want a whole palette full of peaches. 

But the elements? Colors and pigments are products of the elements, anyway, so anything would fit, wouldn't it? It's all just dirt, anyway, isn't it?

It's a tricky theme, boiled down by color family, essentially, and is quite limiting in terms of shade selection.

I don't need it, and I'm not going to buy it.

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Products I am Trying to Use Up [Update 8/27]

I am by no means a Project Panner. I don't like feeling rushed to use or complete a product, especially because I don't think my collection is necessarily out of control. However, there are a couple of products I have that I like,

 but I really want to use up. So, today I'll go through each of these products, and whether or not I will repurchase them.

As of 8/27, I've made some progress in this pile of products! For the sake of ease, I've included that update throughout my reviews! 

1. Pixi Makeup Fixing Mist.
First, the positives. I do love how this makes my skin look and feel, especially after finishing makeup application. It is refreshing and does, for me, help with oil control. Negatives: The spray has become so annoying to use. I am about 78% finished with the product, but the spray really got worse over time. It's hard to press, and does not create a fine mist.

2. Wet n Wild Setting Spray
 So I had some of this product still in the bottle. But from prior experience, since this was my third time buying this spray, I knew this amount would not be usable. When it gets low, the mist becomes weak and not terribly helpful. So, I dumped the rest of this in the Pixi Makeup Fixing Mist. We'll see what happens. After I use up the Pixi Mist, I probably won't repurchase that or the Wet n' Wild, until I finish the L'Oreal Spray, as well as the Urban Decay one.

Update #1. So, in what I consider to be a pretty smart move, I poured the rest of the Wet n' Wild setting spray into the Pixi Bottle. Having more product in the bottle definitely made the PIXI spray more fine and mist-like, but the amount of product in that bottle didn't really change much, due to the addition of Wet 'n Wild. What I will say is that I like the combination a lot. I've been using it a lot since, and intend to continue using it. 

3. Urban Decay Primer Potion.
This stuff will not run out. Seriously. But I am almost there. I do like this primer, but I will not repurchase. I have found the Milani primer is just as good, and formula wise feels very similar.
Update #2. I will repeat: took forever to use up. But I am finally done. I cannot physically squeeze anymore out of the bottle. If I really cared, I could cut open the bottle and see what I could scrape out, but I am not going to do that. I already have the Milani primer on deck, so there is no need. I 

4. Nyx Away We Glow Highlighter in Crystal Glare.

 I am about 50% done with this product, maybe 60%. It is hard to tell. I like the effect of this highlighter, and I think it is very long lasting, but I just don't like cream products. When all my other face products are powders, using this and then blending it in is just a pain. It is really pretty, though. (With a rather short shelf life, though).
#Update 3: Argh. I have not made much progress with this, because I also have a Milani double sided highlight and contour pen thing, which I don't really like. Additionally, I have not been wearing too much makeup these past few weeks, and I don't enjoy the extra work I have to put in for this.  I decided to move this back to my face-products drawer for now. 

5. Affinitic Snail Cream.
No, I would not repurchase.  I mean, I did not actually purchase this in the first place. It was from an Ipsy bag. But I do like this facial cream. I added it to my list because I found this recently after having lost it, and thought it would be quite easy to use up. I am not sure what I plan to do with the container afterwards, though. Maybe use it for lip balm?
Update #4 All used up! Was a good moisturizer, but I will not repurchase. Nope. Instead I am using the Goat's Milk Nourishing Night Cream by Ziaja. 

Now, I will also add to this recently panned shades from my eye products! In my last eyeshadow files on the Modern Renaissance, I had only panned one shade:: Tempera. Now, I also have a small pan in Vermeer and a pin-sized one in Golden Ochre. I don't know why, but I feel myself trying to use up the lighter shades in this palette. I think it is because they don't "wow" me as much as the darker shades. 

When I first bought the Modern Renaissance was just beginning to use it, I was like "THIS ENTIRE PALETTE IS PERFECTION." Now I know that it's not. The ones I am, surprisingly, hesitant to use up are the rich oranges and reds- who would have thought? And it pisses me off that Raw Sienna and Burnt Orange are so similar that they practically perform the same function on the eye. Bummer. 

In my Z-Palette, I am also trying to use up a depotted KvD shade from the Chrysalis palette. The giant cream-colored matte called "Lifelike." It was repressed as a result of colllateral depotting damage, so it was already very loose. This is a heavily panned shade already, and I will probably be done with it by the end of September. In terms of alternatives, I plan to pan "Berries n Cream," a more pink-toned version of this. 

So that's it, folks! 

Friday, August 25, 2017

K-Beauty: Hits and Misses, vol 1

Bon nuit! Today's post is all about my experience with Korean Beauty products, also known as K-Beauty.

Some of these I've purchased from Amazon (some no longer available), but many actually have come from my local CVS Pharmacy.

I'll review each product, and give a quick review, using a HIT or MISS scoring system. Lessgo!

These first three products are actually empties! 

I. Tony Moly Magic Food Mushroom Cream Pore Pack, 30 mL mask, $12.61. First off, this stuff smells like chocolate pudding. And the packaging is so cute. It does dry down on the face and easy is washed/wiped away with a damp cloth. I believe I purchased this because Lisa Eldridge was talking about it. It is no longer sold by Amazon. Does it do a good job of clarifying the skin? Yes, mostly, but I feel I have used better ones. On the whole, though, I'd say this was a HIT. 

2. TONYMOLY Egg Pore Tightening Cooling Pack For Pore, $8.12. Bought from Amazon. No longer sold. This mask is a grey-white mask with a mousse-like consistency, and spreads easily on the skin. Towards the end, mine dried out a little. I would say that it does have a tightening sensation on the face, but not unpleasant. I would not repurchase, as I am not really concerned about pores any more. But I would say this was a HIT. 

3. Holika Holika Milky Cow Hand Cream in Yellow Cow (Banana). I bought this a couple of years ago from TJ Maxx for about $5.00. It is a very good lotion, and because of the secure packaging I am not afraid of traveling with it. A definite HIT. 

4. Ariul Cleansing Tissue, bough a 3-pack from CVS for $5.00. This was a MISS for me. Smelled nice and fresh, but greatly irritated my eyes. 

5. Holika Holika Gudetama Jelly Dough Blusher in Grapefruit. Bought from CVS for $12.49. Definitely on the pricier side, but much less compared to the Amazon price of $15.80. Anyway, love the design and packaging of this product. The pigmentation is very sheer, which I do prefer in a blush. I don't like the doctor's office-soap smell of this, but it fades quickly. Overall I'd say it's a HIT.

6.Holika Holika Gudetama Makeup Sponge Blender. $6.00, still available on Amazon. NOPE. Absorbed a little too much product for my liking, and very dense. And I am still upset that the purported "rose fragrance" was washed out when I tried to dampen this. MISS

7. The last product is a trio (the third is in my car currently) of little lotions from Holika Holika. This is the Pudding Hand Cream gift set, sold on Amazon still for $14.12. My favorite is the flan/custard one, which is in my car, but I do like the scent of the other two as well. What I don't like is that the scents disappear very quickly. Though the lotion also absorbs quickly, I feel it does not moisturize enough. But gaaaah cute packaging. In a way I would said that is 1/2HIT, 1/2 MISS.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

What I do Want to Buuuuh-uuuy

So, after all my TMOing and antihauling, I do have a couple of things on the docket of items I actually do want to buy. I thought I would share them today!
[12/1/17] In the spirit of being reflective, I thought I would go back now and see if I still feel the same about these products, and if things have changed. 

I should note that I do research makeup, sometimes a bit obsessively. So all the of products listed here below are the result of a modicum of research.

1. City Color Shimmer Eyeshadow. Each single is sold for $4 on the City Color website, and you can also buy them in trios on Amazon for $15-$14. I was thiiiis close to buying a trio in Amazon, thinking for some reason that the products were being discontinued. They're not. And I hate the color combinations they put together for the trios anyway. So yeah. Very close to buying them. And in the future, if I need a shimmer eyeshadow, I'll just buy a single straight from the company site.
Huh. I am not so confident about buying straight from company sites anymore, especially with what happened to Tarte and Lime Crime. I am still very interested in these shadws- not enough to buy them just yet- but I do hope I get one this month in my Ipsy bag. 

Wait, why should I care about eyeshadow from City Color? Well, they hold the distinction of being ridiculously highly rated. On Temptalia- though I don't believe her opinion is the final word etc- they're scored in the A range. Pretty nice. Each single comes with 3.68 g of product which is A LOT. It is so much product I had to double check. In other words, you're paying about $1/g. Not bad.

So good quality, good value, and SHIMMER. What's not to like.

2. Dose of Colours Mini Palettes. Can't give much details because the brand just released word of this, as well as a "sneak peak" image of one of the 4 palettes. Like I said before- I love mini-palettes, and I could definitely see myself buying one. Unfortunately, I can also see these selling out. Fast. I would NOT, though, get the "Rust Palette," which is the one they used in their sneak peak:

Ell oh ell. The excitement I had for these was real, so the beginnings of an entire series of TMO's and anti-hauls began. And it looks like my predictions were correct- the mattes were reported to be problematic. And once I saw the price, and the lack of variety in each palette, I knew these were not for me. 

3. Coastal Scents Fall Festival Palette, $13.00 from Amazon. $10 from the CS website (not with shipping)
Okay, so this is the palette:
Ugh, it's pretty. And no, not useful because it contains like one matte, Chamois Nude, that I actually owned before and decluttered because it was not as awesome as everyone said it was. BUT this is a really pretty palette. The color selection makes me think of when I used to go to an Orchard as a kid and it's harvesty and bright. And I wound't wear that blue. Whatever.

To me, this palette is also reminiscent of that Kat von D cathedral palette that is supposed to be coming out. Perhaps a more affordable alternative?

Speaking of the KvD Saint and Sinner palette, I am no longer going to buy from KvD. I just don't think her product suit me well. In terms of this palette, I know I would not wear the blue (maybe on my lower lashline though? Who knows), but I still think this palette is super pretty. I've bought tons of orangey shades these past few months, though, so I know I don't necessarily need this palette. 

Because it has gone on sale AGAIN, I strongly encourage anyone reading this (lul) to avoid purchasing the Naked Smoky. Not only is that always on sale, it is often decluttered, and it is just not a useful palette. I think the concept itself was a failure. Anything can be "smoky." What they ended up with was a nearly monochromatic palette, which just freak me out.

Another example of this kind of distressing palette I found from Beauddiction, who purchased a series of palettes from the Academy of Colour, sold at Kohl's. Just look at it. Spooky.
from Beauddiction 

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Anti-Haul/TMO: BIG Palettes


Today we are going to anti-haul two very hyped releases. One is an eyeshadow palette, the other a blush palette, both BIG!  Lul. Images courtesy of Trendmood, for commentary and critique. Lessgo!

1. Saint and Sinner Palette, by KvD

First #Swatch πŸ˜πŸ™€ #Holidays2017 !!! πŸ™ŒπŸΌπŸ’ƒπŸΌ✨❄️ #SneakPeeks πŸ‘€πŸ‘€ @katvondbeauty #SaintAndSinner New #EyeshadowPalette you can definitely can create a lot of looks with this one. #ComingSoon @sephora *will keep u updated For more sneak peeks please check ❄️✨ #trendmoodholidays2017 When it comes to @thekatvond there is always an inspiration and a story behind every product she creates. Thoughts ??? πŸ–€ XO #Trendmood #sephora Pic: @beautbyt THANK U for this beautiful!! Update: @makeupcrayz 😘 . #makeup #beauty #bbloggers #beautyblogger #makeupoftheday #motd #makeupoftheday #mua #ilovemakeup #makeup #makeupaddict #makeuplover #makeupblogger #makeuponpoint #onpoint #makeuplook #makeuplove #makeuptalk #makeuptutorial #makeuplover #makeupaddict #makeupaddiction #makeupdolls
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Thanks, trendmood. Now, we don't know the price yet, but another similar holiday palette by the brand, the My Vida Loca palette retailed for $59, so I am going to guess it will be in that range.

I personally felt the sudden urge to do the whole pre-order stay up late rigmarole when I saw the beautiful packaging for this palette. But then I was like, no. I have a job. And a lot of eyeshadow already.

You will notice the color selection of this palette is a problem. Many are saying already that the organization of the colors are a turn-off, too. I just don't think it is inspiring. And by the looks of this line, the collection is supposed to represent a moral duality- the Saint and Sinner. This palette does not look like the colors are organized into two sides- unless "good" is boring dusty neutrals  with  THREE whites, and "bad" is boring dusty mattes. Stained glass is not composed of warm neutrals and then pops of color. It is a kaleidoscope of rich and saturated hues:

If stained glass be bright, then why must this palette be dun?

Color problems aside, I can comment on quality of KvD shadows, though this can be chalked up to personal preference. I don't think her shadows are infallible at all. When I did have two of her palettes, I really liked some of the mattes, which were very soft, powdery, and pigmented- but not overly so. But I did end up decluttering the palettes because other mattes were super dry and patchy. And I hate her "glimmer" formula. It's too slippery for me, and I don't feel they come off with intensity and sheen.

Other bloggers have brought up the bulkiness of the packaging, and that it would be cute if she released "minis" of this- I have to agree. I LOVE mini-palettes, and it would not be as boring and overwhelming as this.

So, you don't need this palette just because it's new. Or has cool packaging. Or by an "infallible" makeup brand.  The fall of Subculture taught us this. It was like the fall of Lucifer, and all the people wept. Or something.

2. The Tarte Blush Wheel, $60

Available Now!!! LINK ➡️ BIO Online @tartecosmetics πŸ’—πŸ’œπŸ‘€ Our yearly favorite The #BigBlushBook3 ! Continuing the tradition With a new printed packaging (which is the inspiration for part of their #Holiday2017 Collection ) includes 8 Full size shades, 7 #blushes and 1 #highlighter $60: Heated, Lavish, Poised, Mindful, Peachy, Rad, Kindred. Did u get yours? XO #Trendmood #tartecosmetics THANK U for sharing these pictures @bianca.faccio and for the update: @beautybudgetcollection @stacyg1981 @kini_kini_ @bat.quinn πŸ’œπŸ˜˜ U Rock!. . . . #makeup #beauty #bbloggers #beautyblogger #makeupoftheday #motd #makeupoftheday #mua #ilovemakeup #makeup #makeupaddict #makeuplover #makeupblogger #makeuponpoint #onpoint #makeuplook #makeuplove #makeuptalk #makeuptutorial #makeuplover #makeupaddict #makeupaddiction #makeupdolls
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I have never purchased these Blush Books. I did buy a blush palette once, but ended up depotting it. I am including this in my anti-haul because one beauty blogger wrote she was "disappointed" and surprised it did not sell out. I can't imagine why. It is a sign of the times. People, especially who bought the first two, don't need this. Actually, if you have more than one individual blush already, you don't need this.


Look at the palette. The colors are not that distinct. The center is a highlighter, and I can assure you that any beauty lover will have highlighter.

Additionally, companies do not replicate the formula of their individual shadows in these palettes. They are weaker and cheaper. Benefit is guilty of this, as well as Tarte.

You are not going to use all of these. You will have one or two favorites, and it is worth your money to actually just buy the few you will actually use.

Between you and me, blush is one of those products that I rely on the drugstore for. There are some quite good drugstore blushes out there, and for what the product is- a wash of a shade of red on your face- you absolutely do not need to splurge. Period.

3. πŸš¨BONUS πŸš¨ The Moschino Teddy Bear Palette, $48.

It's out of stock already, but I am including it for the people who did not get their hands on it and are bummed.
from hellogiggles.com
I have to laugh at the hype of this. Over Sephora-brand eyeshadows. I am not trying to come off as a brand snob, but still. Their formulation of eyeshadows are not known for being particularly groundbreaking. Especially with their more recent collaborations with Pantone- the last few releases of those were terrible.

And the rush to get this was not because of a brand loyalty to Moschino. Please. It's because it's a teddy bear shaped palette. You know it.

And all the people who lambaste Too Faced for being "cutesy" went for this palette.

If you didn't get it, it's not that you didn't get these colors. You have these colors. This is the Jaclyn Hill palette from Morphe (just announced another restock in September). Or maybe you have most of these colors, but don't have the blues. So get blue singles from a company that has single-blue shadows that have been reviewed! No, it's not about the eyeshadow. It's about a bear. A teddy bear. A golden teddy bear that cannot fit in a drawer with other palettes, but will be propped up on a vanity for display and never be used, and if there are children in the house they will want to play with the bear, but nope, they can't! Because this is a $50 eyeshadow bear, kids. Ughhhhh.

Look. I am not against fun in makeup. Makeup should be, primarily, about fun. But if the golden teddy bear/ bougie childhood revamp aesthetic is what is missing in your life, there are alternatives.


Hope you enjoyed my anti-haul! I am sure we can expect more in the near future- this holiday season is going to be a wild ride. πŸ˜‰

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Is Hautelook worth it? (essay)

A few weeks ago, Tarte was on Hautelook, a website that offers daily flash-sales. The Make Believe in Yourself palette was on sale for I believe $24, and boy, was I tempted.

Lorac is also on there quite a bit, and I have been tempted to purchase stuff from there before, even though they are on my personal "no fly list." I believe they are on there this week, with products from some collections from a couple of months ago, including the I Love Brunch collection, and the California Dreaming collection. However, I restrained myself and bought nothing.

When it comes to buying and selling, I am by no means an expert. However, there are a couple of things that I have noticed over the past two years when it comes to "sales" and why for me Hautelook is a rather pointless endeavor when it comes to makeup.

1.) What goes on Sale are not the well-loved items.

They really are not. You are not going to EVER see a Megapro palette on Hautelook, because those retail for 50-something dollars, and the company is never going to concede to the fact that they can be worth less. Nope. But the company needs to move stock, and it will concede to palettes like the California Dreaming Palette, sold for $30, being worth $14, and the Brunch palette, originally sold for $44, now $22. It is important to note that both of these "big ticket" palettes were both criticized by reviewers.

2.) The companies will frequently offer sales on their own sites.

 Now, because I have never bought from Hautelook, I don't know what shipping and customer service is like. I know all sales are final. Personally, I like the idea of buying from the companies more, because you may get a coupon or may have more choices. You'll notice Tarte, Too Faced, and The Balm do this.

3.) Purchases from Hautelook sales are frequently tossed during declutters.

 I am going to go ahead and call myself and expert on declutters. I have watched waaaay too many, and even wanted to do a write-up on what all of them have in common. That would take a lot of time, but what I will note is that for many people, items purchased specifically on Hautelook are frequently given up during a declutter. Why? Because they were bought JUST because they were on sale, not because the person would buy it regardless. They were not drawn to it the same way they were drawn to other things.

4.) You can often find these things in person, on Clearance.

 Of course, this is not guaranteed for all brands sold on the site, but oftentimes is the case. TJ Maxx, Kohl's, Nordstrom Rack, etc., are all places that sell discounted makeup. Sometimes seeing the product in person is a better way to make a decision about it.

5.) Don't discount ebay as a source of information.

A good way to gauge the "value" of something is to see what is an average going rate on ebay. I myself purchased the Tarte Pro to Go palette from ebay, and I have no regrets. Of course, one has to be super careful, but I paid $15.00, and no shipping.

Though I frequently visit Hautelook just to see what is on sale, I don't feel as though I am ever proven wrong. Especially with point #1. For me, a true sale is one where I would have bought the product any way, but it was discounted. Unfortunately, that is not the way the world seems to work. The best thing for me is to avoid buying makeup from Hautelook completely.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Destashed Eyeshadow Singles

Hi all! Today I was going through my z-palette and took out three shades that I think for me did not really have a place in my palette. Now, I do think my z-palette has a lot of redundancy and can be pared down even further, but for these three there was just no reason for me to keep them in my daily rotation.

Interestingly, these three all came from the same palette: the BH cosmetics 28 shade foil eyeshadow collection. Now I think this was an excellent palette, and I still have many from the palette, but I either had dupes for the three shades that I picked, or other shades that I used much more.

These are the three:
from l-r, we have a yellow shimmer, a red/copper shimmer, and a light beige shimmer.

For me, though I love yellow eyeshadow, I currently am more interested in matte yellows. The copper shade is very red, but I have a higher quality dupe in the Milani metallic palette. The last one I thought was a dupe for Stila Kitten, but when I actually ended up with Kitten, I found Kitten brighter and more metallic.

Swatches ahoy:
So from top to bottom, we have L'Oreal Infallible eyehsadow in Eternal Sunshine, the destashed yellow, the copper from the Milani palette, and the destashed copper shade. 

from top to bottom, Milani, BH Cosmetics, Stila Kitten, and BH Cosmetics

Milani, BH Cosmetics, Stila Kitten, BH Cosmetics
Now, I say destashed instead of decluttered because I am going to hold onto these three for a while. I still like them, though I did not use them, I might change my mind- especially with the cooler-leaning yellow shimmer.

Thanks for reading!

What I Did Buy: August 2017

Hello! I've spent so much time anti-hauling and ranting and raving about what I don't need to buy, so today I thought I would talk about some recent purchases I've made, why I made them, etc. They're mostly all eyeshadow! I'll organize them according to what I already have been using, and what has yet to arrive!

Products I've Been Using/ Cost:

  1. Wet 'n Wild Greed Palette/ $.98. I've been really interested in discontinued makeup recently, and I heard about this palette after reading a thread on that very subject. This palette was really cheap, but the two mattes in here are very special. Each pan has the same pressed design as the eyeshadow singles currently sold today, but I am convinced they are of a different formula. The mattes in this palette are smoother, and just as opaque. They are still being sold on Amazon, so I would highly recommend getting one. 
  2. Nyx Butter Gloss in Praline/ $5.00. This is such a pretty lipgloss. I actually use it in place of lip balms. I can see myself going through this pretty quickly. 

Products I Have Ordered:
  1. Eyeshadow Single, Vanessa's Vanity $3.00 (sale) in Tangy Dijon. So, I was pretty clear about the reason I bought this- because yellow is something I haven't had the chance to use, but I don't feel like buying a whole palette to do so. I have never purchased from Vanessa's Vanity before, and I am not sure what the status of my order is.
  2. Vanessa's Vanity Sparkler in 6 pm/ $6.00 (sale). Bought this because it seemed cool. Kind of an impulse buy, as I did not read any reviews about it. Hoping it's not too glittery.
  3. Coloured Raine Satin Lipstick in Soul-$17.00. Many times when a beauty blogger says a product "spoke to them" I roll my eyes. However, I have to say after seeing this lipstick I will admit it "spoke" to me. I hope it's not too dark. 
  4. Coloured Raine Eyeshadow Single in "Angel Face"/ $7.00 for 1.7 g. Bought this because it is reported to be a higher quality dupe for MUG Peach Smoothie, which seems to be an eyeshadow staple. We'll see how it goes.
With all this in mind, I think I need to pump the brakes on eyeshadow for a while. I have a feeling that Coastal Scents is going to have one of its 50% off sales soon, but the shades in my wishlist (Pumpkin Pie, Cantaloupe Slice, etc) will be kind of redundant with the above in mind. 

Thanks for reading!  

Sunday, August 13, 2017

TMO: Mermaid Makeup Edition

One of my most popular items on this blog has been my little rant on makeup, mermaids, and unicorns. Honestly, though, if I had to choose, I think mermaids makes more sense for me in terms of its role in makeup branding? Huh. Maybe not.

Anyway, rant aside, I have a few products that I want to mention today as part of this TMO. As with all of my TMOs, I will try to show promotional images from the brands, and give measured criticism.

The first product I want to mention is really a generality. I am talking about full indie eyeshadow/highlighter palettes. For me, I think the highlighter palettes are a tad more grievous. Here we have Bitter Lace Beauty's "Mermaid Dreams Bundle," costing $214.00

I find this to be audacious and disgusting. Hear me out. 

1. These are all swirled highlighters. The swatches on the site showcase the different tones in each pan. However, what do they look like when mixed together? 
2. This is a palette of highlighters. HIGHLIGHTERS. The difference among them can't be so noticeable that you NEED an entire palette full of them. 
3. How do you even know what color you will get, if the colors in the pan are unincorporated? More importantly, how will you tell them apart (meaning the different shades of white, not the gold from the blue, obviously)
4. Why would anyone pay $214.00 for this?

It's too much. It's too much shiny collected dirt for my liking. These types of products, being relatively rare in the overall market, should be small and precious. This is a bloated, useless thing that no one should waste their money on. No one. 

And personally, it is rather easy to anti-haul such a blatant rip-off. But I am also going to anti-haul the individual pans as well, or any indie highlighters in the same vein. These in particular by this brand go for $18. For me, the drugstore is doing a good job of making beautiful highlighters. For the longest time I liked the idea of having one special highlighter that is a different tone or duo-chrome or something....but honestly? I can just use eyeshadow. I have enough of that already. 

On the subject of drugstore, another collection I will be TMOing is:
from hellogiggles
The Wet n Wild Midnight Mermaid collection. Now, I think this is an interesting collection for the fall, and I do think trying one or two of these products would be fun. However, I don't recommend buying the entire collection. 

The reasons I would anti-haul this is because: 1. I have never seen WnW do liquid eyeshadows before, and I would be very suspicious of how they perform, especially if they are supposed to be duo-chrome. 2. These lipcolors are cool, but I would never wear them. 
3. The size and shape of the highlighter is killing me. I also hate the design. It looks like the tail got lopped off. Why couldn't they make it square, like their other special highlighters, and just have the fish-scale print throughout? It really is annoying me because the image is so difficult to process. Besides, like I said with my indie rant, duo-chrome highlighters-though very trendy- are not practical, so I wouldn't really use it. Especially if it gives off a blue shift. I do think WnW was smart, though, in that the base of it is golden rather than white, so as to not give a weird grey/white cast to darker skin tones. Maybe. The proof will be in the swatches and looks.

While I don't think this collection is spectacularly offensive (except for that highlighter design ugh) I know personally I won't be able to buy/wear most of it. For people who can wear bolder colors though,  think they will have a lot of fun. 

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Ipsy August 2017 Review

Many Ipsy reviews tabulate the cost of the bag, which I think is a tricky practice. It is hard to pin down the exact value of something because 1.) markups 2.) subjectivity. If you are not going to use something then it really has no value to you, does it?

Before I go into any more detail, the items I received in my August 2017 bag were:
1.) Crown Medium Contour Brush, $7.00
2.) The Balm Eyeshadow Single Sample, 0.6 g, $2.92 (using the unit price of the Bon Voyage 2 palette)
3.) (2) Secret Key Face Masks, $2.00
4.) Makeup Forever Excessive Lash Sample $7.14
5.) Naked Cosmetics Translucent HD Finishing Powder (full size) $15.00

Total (approximate price) $33.00

Overall, I think this is a really solid bag. I will use all the products. Finding the market value of all these items is a bit harder. If I go price per gram of the original cost of the item, of course it will be a lot higher than if I do price per gram of the discounted price. However, I believe that "discounts" are more true to an objective value of a price, if that makes more sense. So, to make a long story short, any "value" I calculate will be approximate. I've reposted the approximate value of each item in purple next to the item.

Let's get into a breakdown of the products and bag, with pictures:

The bag has an ombre purple pink design, with a gold colored tassel. The front of the bag reads "Good Vibes Only" with Vibes in a gold glitter print. It's a pretty bag, with a message that - like most platitudes- is functionally useless.

I quite like face masks, but I am not sure about the tea tree one. Tea Tree is quite strong, and definitely not as gentle as people think it is.

Notice I have tons of the translucent powder on my thumb, due to the messiness of that product. This is Kuwakaribisha, from the Balm Voyage vol 2 palette. In the palette, this is actually a highlighter, but can also be used as an eyeshadow. Below I have swatched both this- on the left- and the Mary Loumanizer, on the right, for comparison.

Both are very similar, but  Kuwakaribisha has a thicker consistency and definitely feels more like an eyeshadow.  Perhaps  Kuwakaribisha is a tad more yellow-toned. I tried to use it today with the other products from this bag, but I did not have much luck. More on that in a bit.

Naked is one of those brands that is very strange to me. When I first opened the container, half of the sifter had sunk into the container and I had to pry it out. The powder itself has a strange, plastic-smell. It does create a smooth finish on the skin. 

*However, I would apply this after all other products, including blush and highlight. When I tried to apply highlighter OVER this product, thinking I would have a smooth base, I was so so wrong. Nothing would stick to my skin. 

This is a fine mascara. Nice for precision and control. We'll see how it lasts throughout the day.

Finally, the contour brush on the right. I've placed it next to my largest brush, for reference. I used the medium brush to apply the translucent powder and it did a good job. I definitely think Crown makes durable, quality brushes and I will continue to use this brush.

Overall, I am off and on with Ipsy. I resubscribed after unsubscribing from Sephora Play. I just think Ipsy is a lot of fun compared to other services

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

TM(yself)O: Summer/Fall Palette Edition

Hello! So, the makeup world is in a perpetually changing state, and today I have some new and not so new releases to talk myself (and perhaps you, reader) out of. Now, some releases I don't bother with acknowledging (Limecrime, Jeffree Star, Kylie, etc), because I know I will never purchase from them.

The products mentioned today are specifically things I would buy, for one reason or another, but also products I feel like I do not want to/nor should.

All images used in this review are promotional images releases by the company, used by me to critique and provide commentary.

First up is the Coloured Raine Queen of Hearts Palette ($50.00). Now, this will be a permanent item. There is no rush. NONE. Furthermore, if you have the Modern Renaissance, you have most of this palette:

Now, I know they are not identical. As I have mentioned before somewhere on this blog, the strengths of this palette over MR are more of a variety of shimmers. However, I personally can't purchase this knowing I have the MR, as well as another palette I just purchased:
Down to its packaging, if the Queen of Hearts Palette had a baby, out would pop the Tarteist Pro to Go. Now, I love this palette, and I think it tells the same exact "color story" as the Queen of Hearts palette. And I paid $20 for it, which is why I can't buy the Queen of Hearts palette- I just don't feel as though I need it.

Second is the Colour Pop Yes Please palette ($16). Now, they have restocked it, and will be taking orders TOMORROW. Cue the rush. Full disclosure: I think what happened with the Queen of Hearts palette will definitely happen with the Yes, Please palette. It will be sold out AGAIN and they will make it permanent. So again, there's no rush, especially if you have colors like it. As a reminder, this is what the palette looks like:

Again, if you have the MR or any other neutral palette, you've got the majority of this palette. I fully believe in every palette there's that one color that draws the eye to it, and convinces you it is an original or must-have palette, even if the other colors are rather ordinary. While I do think CP should be commended because I do think there are a variety of interesting shades in this palette, the obvious "diamond" of the palette is the matte yellow.

And I am not going to buy a palette simply for one color.

In fact, I did end up buying a yellow matte. I found a number of possibilities on Coastal Scents, like Cantaloupe Slice (currently sold out, but added to my wishlist.) I then found out Vanessa's Vanity, an indie makeup brand, was having a 50% off sale, so I bought Tangy Dijon, for $3:

It's a bit darker than the CP shadow, but I prefer that. Of course, this is going to take a while to shop to me because they were flooded with orders, but still. I don't need another palette just to be able to use yellow.

Finally, we have a palette that truthfully is beautiful. I mean, I would save this as wallpaper on my computer:

Very, very pretty. However, let's talk about the aforementioned "diamond" theory- about identifying the 1-2 standout shades in the palette, and breaking it down from there. Twilight looks like (can't confirm if that will be the case) either a textured shadow or heavily metallic shadow with a blue-pink-purple shift. It is definitely something that I know will not look good on my face. The second one is Amethyst, a color we have been seeing this summer in the form of liquid lipsticks from two brands I will not talk about. The formula on this one will be suss. 

While her Rose Gold palette (also $65) had I think 8 metallic/shimmer shades, this one has 10, and are not grouped together by row. Aside from the purples, these colors can be found in a multitude of palettes, just perhaps not in that "textured" formula, which was disliked anyway.

Retrograde reminds me of Cherry Moss from Coastal Scents (also on my wishlist), as well as the blue-green pigment from Mac, as well as the Comfort Zone palette from Wet n Wild.

Do I think this palette is pretty:? Yes. But if this palette will be anything like her first one, it will be an expensive risk to take, especially because so much of the palette is neutral. 

*Bonus: some released previews of the Desi/Katy collab for Dose of Colours, from trendmood:

In regards to the entire collection, I was first reminded of the Mac Mariah Carey collaboration. I don't think the packaging or concept really are that interesting- just a lot of glitter and glam. I don't think the colors of the shadows stand out either. Texture is another thing that stands out- as glitter can be rough to touch. As for the quality of the eyeshadows go, I hear you have to wet your brush to foil them? Not a new concept, but the shadows look so chunky and textured in the pan I don't think I am drawn to them.

And while we are on this spiel on texture, two of these palettes both emphasize metallic shadows to the point where the product is heavily textured. I think this goes with the mindset of the ABH Subculture palette, where everything had to be intensely pigmented. I think these companies are really overdoing it, for the sake of promotional images, that they are really diminishing the usability of their products. 

Next post will be more on products that I did buy! 

Monday, August 7, 2017

Sparkly EoTD w/ Fyrinnae!

For today's look, a couple of things going one.

One: I am getting tired of the whole "set your primer" spiel. One, my lids are not oily. Two, I don't think it does me any favors. I have been getting frustrated with a lot of my looks lately because I feel the colors are muddying together.

Two: I am trying something a little new with eyeliner. I have always liked the look of a legit wing, but it is a scary endeavor. Today I think I worked out a "baby wing" thing that I am going to keep practicing, and continue to use.

Products used:

1- From the Tarteist Pro to go palette: Drive (a pink-toned light brown)
2- Wet n Wild Brulee single (a warm toned cream)
3- Warm Taupe from the Modern Renaissance palette
4- Fyrinnae Single Mythical Dalliance ("rosy and bronze sparkle with lime green shift")

5-Stila Cosmetics- Kitten (champagne shimmer)
6- Milani primer
7- Physicians Formula Eyebooster AND Milani Eye Tech Extreme (for the wing)
8- Fyrinnae Pixie Epoxy
9- Starlooks Voluminizing Mascara

A lot of products for this look! The only one I don't think was necessary was Stila Kitten. That was the look I was originally going for, but I got bored and decided to use a Fyrinnae single instead.

Now, I love Mythical Dalliance, but as the pictures will demonstrate, glitter gets everywhere: in the eyelashes, on one's faces, etc. I have to brush away glitter that has transferred inside the crease.

Overall, I think this is a fun and glamorous look that I intend to replicate. I did NOT set my primer, but did use Brulee only on the brow bone, above the crease.

I continue to love the Pro To Go palette, and am so happy that it is my stash!

Now, onto the pictures:

Sunday, August 6, 2017

EoTD with z-palette single shadows

Good morning!

You know, it's ironic. In my quixotic quest to find the ideal purple eyeshadow, I think I have come to the point where I don't know purple eyeshadow even works on me.

Today's look mainly involved four single eyeshadows. I am trying to go back to enjoying the colors of my z-palette, especially because I know I have to destash at least one of them.

So, we have:
1.) Wet n Wild Creme Brule
2.) Coastal Scents Victorian Pear
3.) Coastal Scents Panama Rose
4.) ABH in Fudge

Now, I chose Victorian Pear as my transition color because it's on my list for possible shades to destash. It's a nondescript satin taupe, but randomly with green glitter that barely shows up.There are literally pieces of green glitter embedded in the shadow. When I first saw that, I thought it was a mistake. But when I actually used the color, I found the glitter was throughout. I'll try to post a picture of what I am talking about:

Anyway, I really liked how the shadow performed. It blended well. None of the glitter showed up.

On the lid I used Panama Rose, and I wish I set down glitter glue on my lid first. It's a really pretty metallic mid-toned purple.

Finally, we have blended in the outercorner ABH Fudge, which I love because its blendable and has just enough warmth. Definitely one of my favorite singles of all time.

Here are pictures of today's look. It's not actually one of my favorites but I am not going to re-do my makeup.

Indie Produtcs Round-Up

Hi all!

Today I thought I would share all of the powder products (and some misc) I have purchased from indie brands. Now, I love indie brands. I love that many times you get a great value, interesting designs and concepts that you would never see (although times are changing) typically in major cosmetics brands. I also love the fact that perhaps if there is a color or product you once wanted but was discontinued, or too expensive, indie companies might have your back. That being said, I don't think that just because a company or product is indie, it is inherently better than a larger makeup company. As you will see below, I myself have only really dipped into indie products, but I feel I have come away with some hits and some misses.

1.) Light Grey Contour Powder from Lunatick Cosmetick Labs. This I use mostly in the winter, when I really need to take away warmth from a bronzer. Because I did order a product that was too light, I cannot use this on its own. It is a light grey powder, with excellent staying power.

2.) Eyeshadow Single in Invocation by Lunatick Cosmetick Labs. This single is currently in my z-palette and I don't really use it. I don't feel that the pigmentation is all that great. It is a slightly shimmery cool-toned mauve/pink, but the formula is not what I am used to, and I don't use it all that often. It's sort of nondescript for me.

3.) Shiro Highlighting Powder in Vessel for Disaccharides: Unfortunately I've moved this to my makeup purgatory. It is a beautiful powder with really pretty sparkles, but I can't wear this on day-to-day basis. If I could, I would.

4.) Shiro eyeshadows in There's No Such Thing as Magic and *** (very long name). I reviewed both of these on my blog, and the full name of the light peach matte is there, too. Both are fine, but No Such Thing as Magic Oxidizes.

5.) Fyrinnae Cosmetics eyeshadows, loose. I can't believe I lost Serendipity. It was my favorite. These are really pretty glittery shadows, but so much work for the morning.

6.) Life's Entropy contour stick in Proton- also reviewed on my blog. Love this!

7.) Cherry Pit Crafts Incense Cones- my favorite- even ordering it twice- is Toasted Marshmallow. I love this store and plan to continue purchasing incense from them.

6.) *Just purchased as part of the 50% of sale:  two singles from Vanessa's Vanity in Tangy Dijon and 6 pm sparkler. So I was lead to Vanessa's Vanity after searching for a yellow matte shadow. Colourpop's Yes Please palette has been out of stock for forever, and my plan B was to buy Cantaloupe Slice from the Coastal Scents website. However, that is also out of stock. So then I went to etsy and searched for a yellow matte that way- and lo and behold! Vanessa's Vanity is swatched and reviewed constantly by Our Beauty Cult.

I am so looking forward to trying out her products, especially the yellow.

So, to wrap up. I personally thinking that as with anything in life, buying from indie brands needs to be sensible. My own bleh experiences come from buying things that I did not see reviews of. That is key. Because no matter what, indie products will always seem special and unique and quality. Reviews, however, will help you determine if that actually is the case.

Saturday, August 5, 2017

EoTD with Maybelline's City Mini Palette

Good morning/afternoon!

I will eventually make a makeup organization post, but for now I will say that my current system of organization has really been inspiring to me, and has reminded me of what I have and can do.

For instance, I was reminded that Maybelline's City Mini Palette in Downtown Sunrise is one of the best drugstore palettes that I have used in a while, and I wanted to use it again today.

Downtown Sunrise, as well as the other palettes in the collection, is a smart assortment of shades and finishes. It is not the most neutral palette in the collection, but it is on the more neutral side, with also pops of color. I have previously reviewed this palette, and did take off points for pigmentation. However, I do not think that a worth or value of a palette can be determined by pigmentation alone. I am still drawn to this palette because it can be built up, and I love the texture of the shimmers.

Today's look used all the colors in the palette, as well as one shade from the Modern Renaissance thrown in (Love Letter).

After the pictures, I'll go in with a reflection on how I think the shades apply and perform.

Primer was Milani Eyeshadow Primer (really liking this a lot), eyeliner was Physician's Formula eye booster, and mascara was L'Oreal Original with Curved Brush.

So for this look, I used the cream color to set my primer all along my browbone and in my crease. I then blended in with a fluffy brush the light orange shadow- this is really the only shade I wish had more pigmentation. It really disappears on the eye save for a light hint of color. 

Here you can see Love Letter in the crease. I did blend well with the colors from the Maybelline palette. On the other corner is my favorite matte in the palette- the dark brown. Already you can see a little bit of shimmer in the crease- which is transfer/fall-out from all the shimmer I used on the lid.

 On the lid I put down Too Faced Glitter Insurance, and used all three shimmers. The taupe shimmer went all over the lid. I then basically mixed the two pink shimmers and placed them on the lid. I feel it did create somewhat of an iridescent effect.

Here we have two pictures without flash, in different lighting. 

Final: the mattes in this palette really work best with a denser brush. I used a fluffier brush with the light orange shade, and perhaps that is some of the reason why it continues to be harder for me to get to show up. I used a dense brush for the brown and it really worked well.

In sum: This is an easy to use palette that I know I will continue to use!

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...