Saturday, 30 July 2011

Spot the dead man

Today we went to Frombork cathedral and enjoyed a little "spot the dead man game".


We had to look left...


and right...



and above our heads...


under the pews...


and below our feet...



I'm sure I haven't located all of them. Not that I'm not observant enough, it's rather that my time was limited as the blast of organ scared my son Mikolaj to death.

Friday, 29 July 2011

Make Up For Ever Smoky Lash mascara

Make Up For Ever Smoky Lash
If you are looking for a mascara which will guarantee a dramatic effect of thick, long, curled black lashes, you need Make Up For Ever Smoky Lash.  I'm a big fan of Smoky Lash Aqua, which is the waterproof version, so I thought Smoky Lash could give me the same result without all that fuss connected with removing a really waterproof mascara, which needs a lot of persuasion before it would budge (good for the beach, not neceaasarily the best idea for the city where the temperature this summer hardly exceeds 20 °C). And I was right. The effect is absolutely stunning, really close to false lash effect. As the name suggests this mascara is best for dynamic make-up like smoky eyes, those who like nude, make-uo no make-up styles may find it overwhelming. I guess I've found my HG mascara, cause apart from giving me the look that I want, it doesn't smugde or crumble, stays put all day, survives my afternoon naps with no signs of tear and wear and is easy to remove when the time comes. It seems to me that I'm gradually becoming a MUFE fan!

Make Up For Ever Smoky Lash


Disclaimer: I bought the product myself for my personal use and I am not affiliated with any company. I am not paid to do this review and everything I said here is my genuine opinion.

Nail Tek Hydration Therapy nailpolish in Hello Gorgeous


I've always loved painting my nails, but the polish damaged my nails no matter what base I was using. Now I've come across Nail Tek who promise not only to make my nails look good but also maintain their health in spite of using nail polish so I enthusiastically bought a couple of their products.

One of them is the polish in Hello Gorgeous, which is a bright red with no sparkle or pearl. I really love the colour, it's exactly what I wanted. It applies evenly, but it takes a really long time to dry, I definitely need a quick-dry top coat, cause this drying process seems to last for ever. The polish is sold in an enormous 15 ml bottle ( Sally Hansen for example is 13ml), I'm not sure I'm ever gonna use this up, especially that I'm planning to get some more of these polishes! 



Disclaimer: I bought the product myself for my personal use and I am not affiliated with any company. I am not paid to do this review and everything I said here is my genuine opinion.

Inglot Nail Polish Corrector


Inglot Nail Polish Corrector

This week I've made a decision to start painting my nails again, ignoring the fact that nail polish does a lot of damage to them. So I equipped myself in plenty of stuff, which requires a longer trial period before I can review them, today I will focus on something that works instantly, namely Inglot Nail Polish Corrector.


This looks like a felt tip pen, sold with 2 replaceable tips and is meant to remove any nail polish from the cuticule. This is the one and only product of this type I've ever had, so I can't compare it to anything else, but I like it so far. It does what it's supposed to do, helps to eliminate any mistakes made when applying varnish. When I was buying this I thought it would be another useless gadget, but I really wanted to give it a chance and I'm glad I did. I'm pretty much sure it will dry out in no time, but so far it works fine. When it dries I'll get another one cause it's really handy.



Disclaimer: I bought the product myself for my personal use and I am not affiliated with any company. I am not paid to do this review and everything I said here is my genuine opinion.

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

MAC blush in Dollymix (review + swatches)


I surprised myself with getting this crazy pink looking blush. In fact MAC Dollymix is much softer when applied. The finish is sheertone shimmer, it provides sheer, yet buildable coverage, you can see flecks of shimmer when the blush is applied, but they are not that prominent and it actually looks more glowy than shimmery. I never thought I would wear something quite as bold and as obviously pink, however, to, my surprise it suits me really well. I'm glad I got it!

Sheertone shimer tends to  be one of my favorite finishes. The blushes are soft and almost creamy in application. They apply evenly and blend well. The same can certainly be said about Dollymix. It gives my cheeks a nice glow without looking madly pink and stays put for a long time.

Disclaimer: I bought the product myself for my personal use and I am not affiliated with any company. I am not paid to do this review and everything I said here is my genuine opinion.

Monday, 25 July 2011

MAC Semi-precious collection: Mineralize eyeshadow in Dark Indulgence (review + swatches)

Mineralize eyeshadow in Dark Indulgence

Dark Indulgence was the last one left to shop when I finally reached the Warsaw store. I was considering getting this one, but with the choice so narrow I was spared the trouble of choice.

Dark Indulgence is a lovely dark forest green with black veining. When used dry it apears blackish and chalky, hard to apply evenly. But when used wet this eyeshadow reveals all its beauty. The colour becomes deep green with sheen, which is less apparent when the colour is used dry. When mixed with Inglot Duraline it turns matte greenish black. I love the fact that it's so versatile. I can use it wet as a liner, I didn't have any green liner so far! The line looks similar to a line I could draw with a cream eyeliner, it only takes longer to draw it.

This is my second Mineralize eyeshadow after a blue duo. I must remember to handle it with care cause I dropped the other one and it shattered into pieces! You need to be extra carelul with baked minerals it seems.
Mineralize eyeshadow in Dark Indulgence swatches: left- wet as a liner, centre-dry, right-wet



Disclaimer: I bought the product myself for my personal use and I am not affiliated with any company. I am not paid to do this review and everything I said here is my genuine opinion.

Rouge Dior Creme de Gloss in 845 (review + swatches)


I've had this gloss for quite a while now and for some reason unknown I've forgotten to review it and it's one of my favourites.
This gloss belongs to my favourite group of lip products i.e. liquid lipstick. Liquid lipsticks are sold in little tubes with wand applicators (like glosses) but the intensity of colour is closer to that of a lipstick. They are also non-sticky, long lasting, but their shine is not as glass-like as in the case of glosses. 
This particular one fits in this category perfectly. It's easy to apply, the colour applies evenly, it stays on lips for a long time, though the colour tends to fade and change the hue from bloodred into something slightly dark pinkish.  
I bought it to experiment with red colour. I thought a gloss would be a much safer option than a lipstick and this was a good decision. It encouraged me to wear red.  Now I possess a number of red lipsticks and glosses, each of different undertone and hue and this one remains one of my favourites.

If I could just make one comment  it would be that in spite of the fact that it's packed in a clear bottle you can't see how much product is left. I guess it's so dense that it clings to the walls of the bottle instead of flowing downwards.
Disclaimer: I bought the product myself for my personal use and I am not affiliated with any company. I am not paid to do this review and everything I said here is my genuine opinion.

MAC eyeshadows in Phloof! and Brule (review + swatches)


MAC eyeshadows in Phloof! (left) and Brule (right)


I've just added Brule to my collection of highlights and I thought I'd review it together with Phloof! as they seem fairly similar to me. I must say I had really hard time trying to choose the right one for myself. The differences in shades are sometimes indiscernible to my eye. After lots of swatching I finally decided on Brule.

Brule is described as soft creamy beige with satin finish and I find this description highly adequate. As you can see from the swatch below the colour is very discreet and very opaque. A single layer made my freckles disappear! I think it can be used to even out the colour of the eyelid actually better than as a highlight. To my surprise this shade melts into my own shade and remains invisible on my brow bone. I say to my surprise cause my skin has pink undertone and I thought beige would stand out discreetly, but no. I guess I should have bought Yoghurt or Gesso, I'm not sure. The finish is satin, but if I didn't know that I would rather think it's matte.
Phloof! is described as frosted off-white with frost finish, but to me it seems closer to beige than to white. Of course frost finish adds this white sheen, but the base colour is beige. Phloof! is a very nice highlight, which brightens up the brow bone with whitish sheen. Iam sure it will flatter any skin tone. Due to its finish it adds a kind of night out character to make up, that's why I set out to find a nice, less sparkly highlight to wear on everyday occassions.

Both shadows, like most MAC eyeshadows, are very good quality, creamy in texture, non-crumbly and smooth. They apply and blend well, producing no fallout.
MAC eyeshadows in Phloof! (left) and Brule (right)



Disclaimer: I bought the product myself for my personal use and I am not affiliated with any company. I am not paid to do this review and everything I said here is my genuine opinion.

TOTD

Some people do faces of the day, I thought I'd do a thought of the day. So here goes my first one:

Golden cage does not make the canary happy.

Thursday, 21 July 2011

MAC Semi-precious collection: Mineralize skinfinishes in Rose Quartz, Crystal Pink and Pearl

MAC Semi-precious collection: Mineralize skinfinishes in Rose Quartz, Crystal Pink and Pearl
I bought these skinfinishes on a whim. This is the first time I've been using MAC Mineralize Skinfinishes and I'm not that certain if I needed so many, especially that Pearl and Crystal Pink may look different on swatches, but they are fairly similar when applied. One of them could definitely be skipped, probably I should have given Crystal Pink a miss, but these situations are unavoidable when doing internet shopping.

 I'll try to review  these together as I see no point doing that separately. The differences in colour are visible on the swatches. The skinfinishes from the Semi-precious collection combine a number of different colours, the outer circle dominates the overall shade, while the patch in the centre consists of different colours ranging from beige to dark brown or green. At first I thought this double-shade was just a gimmick, as it often happens that in reality they are impossible or very inconvenient to use separately (eg. this was the case with Diorskin Nude compact foundation), but to my surprise it's more than possible to use them separately. The colours in the swatches differ much from one another, but in fact these are heavy swatches, when the colours are applied more thinly they no longer differ that much (of course the rosy one stands out). They leave a nice sheen on the cheeks, I suppose I'll use them much more often in the autumn and winter cause with the tropical humid weather like today I'm glowing like a glitterball with no fancy enhancements.

These skinfinishes are really soft, making the application truly effortless. They provide a sheer sheen rather than colour. They seem to contain some rather chunky glitter, especially Rose Quartz and Crystal Pink, but it's so fine and light that the brush sends it floating in all directions. And thank goodnes, I prefer sheen over glitter.

Mineralize Skinfinishes are very nice face products, but I can't understand why anyone would need more than two or three of these. Since you need very little I suppose they are practically inexhaustible. And because the layer is very sheer one shade (probably the most neutral one) should be enough to match any kind of make-up.  I'm glad I've satisfied my craving for Mineralize Skinfinishes, now I can focus on other fabulous MAC products.

MAC Semi-precious collection: Mineralize skinfinish in Pearl


MAC Semi-precious collection: Mineralize skinfinish in Pearl (left to right: outer circle, centre, both swirled together) 

MAC Semi-precious collection: Mineralize skinfinish in Rose Quartz


MAC Semi-precious collection: Mineralize skinfinish in Rose Quartz (left to right: outer circle, centre, both swirled together) 

MAC Semi-precious collection: Mineralize skinfinish in Crystal Pink


MAC Semi-precious collection: Mineralize skinfinish in Crystal Pink (left to right: outer circle, centre, both swirled together) 
 
Disclaimer: I bought the product myself for my personal use and I am not affiliated with any company. I am not paid to do this review and everything I said here is my genuine opinion.

MAKEUP MONOLOGUE GIVEAWAY

I've just taken part in a giveaway with a very faint hope to win Urban Decay Naked palette. The address of the giveaway is quoted below.


http://makeupmonologue.blogspot.com/2011/06/giveaway-urban-decay-and-elf.html?showComment=1311251807529#c2603681035316864799

Tuesday, 19 July 2011

MAC Semi-precious collection: Mineralize blush in Warmth of Coral and Pressed Amber (review + swatches)

MAC Semi-precious collection: Mineralize blush in Pressed Amber and Warmth of Coral
First of all I must say that I'm extremely happy cause I've found a way to order MAC products. The nearest MAC store is in Warsaw, a few hundred kilometres away from here, so going there to get the limited collections is out of the question. Also there's no online MAC store in Poland, and I avoid shopping on Ebay or Allegro as there are so many fake products there. So I ordered these from London, over the telephone, and they reached my door a couple of days later!

First of all I must say I was surprised when I saw these. I'd prepared for my haul a lot, watched a number of reviews on youtube, browsed through the swatches etc. and thought them actually much brighter than they are in reality. At first glance Pressed Amber seems of kind of flat brown colour and Warmth of Coral is not as vibrant as it looks in many pictures. Also their finish seems to be perfectly matte. The surprise comes when you apply them. They give my cheeks lovely natural colour (Pressed Amber is more bronzer-like and Warmth of Coral is definitely a blush) and very subtle satin sheen, which was indetectible earlier. They are lovely blushes for every occasion and they would flatter almost every complexion! I'm only quite surprised that this collection was launched in the summer cause to me these warm browns and oranges perfectly match the coming of Autumn. I associate summer with more vibrant, crazy shades, but maybe it's just me. 

MAC Mineralize blush in Pressed Amber
 

MAC Mineralize blush in Pressed Amber

MAC Mineralize blush in Warmth of Coral


MAC Mineralize blush in Warmth of Coral

 Disclaimer: I bought the product myself for my personal use and I am not affiliated with any company. I am not paid to do this review and everything I said here is my genuine opinion.

Monday, 18 July 2011

John Maus: We Must Become the Pitiless Censors of Ourselves ( a review)


I first heard of John Maus when browsing through pitchfork.com videos I came across his clip for "The Believer". I instantly fell in love with that song, I loved the retro sound of the pulsating synthesisers, the silly sound effects, the sweet melodies, the faded vocals and generally the way he managed to re-create the charm of the early 80s. So I checked the guy out, found his entry on myspace, where he included only the worst reviews of his 2 albums, let me quote the most hilarious ones: "The first couple of tracks make this the most skip-able album of 2006" or "If it is supposed to be funny, it is not. If it is meant seriousy, then Maus needs some SERIOUS help." What a sense of humour, I thought, and while waiting for his new album to come out I occupied myself with listening to his previous work. To my great surprise the albums did not sound like "The Believer" at all. The albums bore high resemblance to very early recordings of my absolutely beloved "The Legendary Pink Dots" from the early 1980s, particularly to those collected on their Legendary Pink Box album. I was in the state of shock that anyone can model their music on these records, which most people discard as rubbish (well, I love these early works cause they are so lovey fresh, so full of ferment, but I admit this is a challenge for those with better musical hearing than me).




So I got the new album bearing such an intelligent title "We must become the pitiless censors of ourselves", which became my motto for a couple of days. I must say that the album is both a step ahead towards catchy hit songs, kept in the early 80s mood,  like "The Believer" and simultaneously faithful to the old pinkdotsy style. All the 11 songs  are clever pastiches of synth-pop hits of the dark wave of 80s, intelligently arranged, combining keyboards, drum machines, unemotional muted vocals and the seeming disability to play a musical instrument (heh, if I didn't know he actually studied music and played keyboards for Ariel Pink I would definitely believe him to be a sort of naive musician, who thinks the idea is more important than the performance and skill).




The album opens with a lovely display of moonlight synth electronics in Streetlight.

Quantum Leap  and ...And the rain, again, compare with early Legendary Pink Dots, or early French synth bands like Partie 1 or a bunch of others you can hear on  BIPPP, French Synth Wave compilation album and probably a thousand other bands of the epoch I'm not familiar with.


In case of Hey Moon, infantile lyrics, which I kind of like cause this song seems a joke to me with the slow tempo, bells tingling, and the silly rhymes:
and your pale round face
makes me feel at home in any place i happen to be
at a quarter past three
I haven't heard anything so bad in years and paradoxically I enjoy it. A lot.


Ballads are intermingled with some more dynamic compostions. All in all what we get is 11 songs which provide a little less than 40 minutes of nice retro-electronic music. I know I like this album mainly for sentimental reasons and I do realise it would be hard to persuade anyone that this is a milestone for music, yet if you like synth sound of the very early '80s you'll take pleasure in listening to John Maus' We Must Become the Pitiless Censors of Ourselves.




And I'm a convert, I'm a believer


Telephone lines all across the world
People fight all across the world
Angels sing all across the world
Baby, you and me all across the world
Jackie Chan flashing all across the world
Hulk Hogan flashing all across the world
Baby, let's go fly all across the world
They call me the believer




I AM the pitiless censor of myself

Sunday, 17 July 2011

Wirty

 I returned home late last night, after a heartwarming evening with Anka (and a couple of ciders), was woken up at 7 with a sort of slight recollection of the events of the night before, which manifested itself mostly with this weird feeling around my stomach. I looked out of the window and noticed that it seemed like the second decent summer day since May so in spite of my evident tiredness we resolved to make something of this lovely day.
We went to one of the most charming and quiet places around, the park in Wirty. With the weather so nice and everything being so green and beautiful we succumbed fully to the magic of the day.
Could I resist the charm of Monet's pictures? Quite cliche, and bad taste possibly, but who cares?
Having my satisfied senses with the beauty of the waterlilies I felt the irresistable magnetism of the centuries old  forest, much less polished and cultivated than the park, full of magnificent trees both those standing upright and those fallen, covered in moss and showing all signs of decay. And the small, duckweed covered ponds and swamps almost invisible to the human eye, are more likely to be located by auditory senses due to hundreds of frogs giving their croaking matinee. The park ends with a beautiful lake, with its water  the colour of absinth, as it usually is at this time of the year, makes you want to immerse yourself in the abyss of this magic liquor . 
 Even the boys behaved themselves like 2 little angels and we didn't need to waste our newly charged energy on pacifying them. The only nuissance were the hordes of mosquitoes lurking in the dark swampy places, which somehow appealed to me most.
I really needed this. For the past few weeks I felt like a prisoner, a victim of my current situation, now I seem to have freed myself at least for a moment. I suppose I'm ready to face the week.

Saturday, 16 July 2011

ELF Eyebrow kit in Light

ELF Eyebrow kit in Light
This is one of my absolutely favourite ELF products. The one in the picture is the third one I've ordered, I gave one to my mum, the other one I had cracked and became quite messy, so as soon as I hit the pan I decided to reorder.

This is my HG product, I can rave about it on and on. The box contains shaping wax (on the left), setting powder (on the right) and a double-sided brush. The wax, which helps to model the brows, is in relatively dark colour. It shapes my brows nicely without looking unnaturally dark. The setting powder is much lighter, so when used it does not intensify the shade of the wax. Both the wax and the powder can be used together or separately, depending on how dramatic look you want to achieve.

The brushes which are included in compact sets are usually on the crappy side, in this case the brush comes as a nice surprise, cause it's absolutely usable. For my convenience when I'm at home I use  ELF precision and angled brushes from the studio line, but if you don't want to get any extra brow brushes the one included in the set will do its job perfectly fine.


I'm including two pictures of the kit in different light to give you a better idea of the shade if the product.

ELF Eyebrow kit in Light
 Disclaimer: I bought the product myself for my personal use and I am not affiliated with any company. I am not paid to do this review and everything I said here is my genuine opinion.

How peachy is peach? Peach-coloured blushes by Nars, Mac, ELF, Dior (swatches)


Left, top to bottom: Nars Sex Appeal, Amour, Deep Throat
Middle, top to bottom: MAC Style, Peechykeen, Pinch O'peach
Right, top to bottom: ELF Peechy Keen, Dior Peechy Keen


I thought I'd do the post cause I suddenly discovered that most of my blushes are of peachy colour. I never realised that cause to me they seem so different. This made me think. What is a peachy colour? Is it the redder, almost burgundy, shade of peach skin? Or the more pinkish one? Or the yellow-orange of the skinned peach ? If you buy wall paint, you'll get this sort of shade for sure.


As you can see in the picture above the definition of peachyness varies even within one producer's range.

Today I'm not going to review these blushes in terms of quality or wear, but I'll try to describe their colour.


It seems to me that MAC Style (described as coral-peach by the producer) and Dior Peechy Keen (no colour description provided) are the most peachy of them all.

Nars Amour (peachy pink) and Deep Throat (peach) have a very similar shade, both with strong pink undertones. MAC Pinch O'peach (warm peach) and Peechykeen (baby peach) also display a high level of pinkiness, with Pinch O'peach being more dusty pink in my opinion than anything else.

Nars Sex Appeal (soft peach) and ELF Peechy Keen seem to lie the furthest away from the popular understanding of that peechy means. Nars Sex Appeal is an almost invisible soft milky pink, whereas ELF Peechy Keen is more of a beige colour.

I love all of these shades, I think all of them are very beautiful. What I want to say by this post is how careful you need to be when ordering anything on-line. The descriptions and pictures are often highly misleading and well.... peach may not be as peachy as it seems!


And now for a series of swatches. I'll swatch them in two ways: blushes of one brand swatched together and then the more similar shades side by side (for comparison).


Nars Amour, Deep Throat, Sex Appeal



ELF Peechy Keen, Dior Peechy Keen (matte and shimmer)


MAC Style, Peechykeen, Pinch O'peach



MAC Pinch o'peach
Nars Amour
Nars Deep Throat
MAC Peechykeen
Dior Peachy Keen (matte+shimmer swatched separately)
MAC Style
ELF Peachy Keen
Nars Sex Appeal

and as the last swatch I added MAC cremeblend in Something Special, which is sold as a coral one, but somehow fits in the peach collection as well


As you can see the degree of pigmentation differs. Most of these are 1-layer swatches with the exception of Dior shimmer, ELF, and Nars Sex Appeal, which needed at least 2 layers to show up.




Disclaimer: I bought the products myself for my personal use and I am not affiliated with any company. I am not paid to do this review and everything I said here is my genuine opinion.

Friday, 15 July 2011

Lancome Laque Fever in Bloody Cherry Cherie (113) - review + swatches

Lancome Laque Fever in Bloody Cherry
If you are looking for a liquid lipstick, which will make a bold statement and match warm toned skin, this is it!
On the wand it looks very dark, it's not that dark on the lips, probably thanks to the light-reflective properties of the tiny shimmer.


Lancome Laque Fever in Bloody Cherry, single-layer swatch
This is one of my favourite lip products for evening outings. Lasts for a long time, it's easy to apply with the heart-shaped applicator. The consistency is smooth and non-sticky, offering pigmentation of a lipstick and a kind of shine between a lipstick and a gloss.

Lancome Laque Fever in Bloody Cherry
I must say that I generally love all liquid lipsticks (retailed as opaque glosses), I've tried a number of them by Lancone, Chanel, Dior and Illamasqua and I believe all of them are excellent products, it's just the matter of choosing the colour which will suit you most, but I wouldn't be able to choose a product because of the quality, all of them are equally good.


Disclaimer: I bought the product myself for my personal use and I am not affiliated with any company. I am not paid to do this review and everything I said here is my genuine opinion.