Thursday, 31 January 2013

Affordable make-up: Maybelline Dream Lumi Touch concealer review

Today a quick pro and con post about Maybelline Dream Lumi Touch concealer.

  • it really works! makes my face look so much brighter and fresher
  • high coverage, considering it's more of a highlighter than a concealer
  • the dispenser works fine, it's easy to control the amount of product you need
  • relatively inexpensive

  • I'd prefer it to be more moisturising, it tends to feel dry under my eyes
  • the packaging is made of kind of cheap plastic, there's no way this product could pretend to be more high-end
  • I have no idea what shade I've got, the name of the shade was attached to the cap, to open the concealer I had to remove the sticker

All in all I believe it's a great concealer for younger beauty fanatics, I'll need to look for something more moisturising.

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.

Wednesday, 30 January 2013

wintry look no.4 : frosty blues

Essence stay all day eyeshadow in Jim-me Blue as my base
Inglot eyeshadow #429 all over the movable lid
Inglot eyeshadow  #428 in the outer corner
Maybelline Color Tattoo in Infinite White in the inner corner
MAC Zoom Lash mascara mascara in Blue charge
Bobbi Brown gel liner in Denim Ink

This look came out kind of too blue so after my return home I experimented with adding matte black in the outer corner and it looked way better!

Sally Hansen Diamond Strength nail polish in Royal Romance (440) review

Sally Hansen Diamond Strength nail polish in Royal Romance
I found Sally Hansen Diamond Strength nail polish in my X-mas stocking. It wasn't on  my wishlist and I'd never go for it myself  cause I'm neither a fan of Sally Hansen nor of the shade itself.

Whether I like the shade or not, I must admit that it's very unique. It's a kind of purple with strong pink undertones and pearlescent shimmer. Actually, it's so cool-toned that it matches my complexion pretty well. I would use it from time to time, just to step off the beaten track of my very defined reds and browns and blues and purples if the formula was better quality. 
It appllies quite all right, usually 2 coats do the trick, it's not ery streaky, so theoretically it's fine. But the drying lasts for ever. I used it with Sally Hansen Insta-Dri top coat, waited relatively long, checked my nails and left a fingerprint on one of them. Waited longer, when I felt sure my nails were dry I returned to my daily activities and of course they were ruined. I've had a couple Sally Hansen nailpolishes in my life and I've always noticed the same thing. 

Verdict: no more Sally Hansen nail polishes. Not worth the money and effort. Waste of my precious time.

Sally Hansen Diamond Strength nail polish in Royal Romance

Disclaimer: I received this product  for my personal use and I'm not affiliated with any company. I am not paid to do this review and everything I said here is my personal opinion.

Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Wintry look no.3: silver and blue

This time I fancied some silvers combined with vivid blue.
I created this look using:
Nars Pro-Prime eyeshadow base
NYX True Taupe above the crease
Urban Decay Gunmetal (from the Naked palette) on the movable lid and along the lower lashline
Urban Decay Creep (from the Naked palette again) in the outer corner
Chanel Ombre Paupieres eyeshadow #70 tapped on the lid
Stila smudge stick waterproof eyeliner in halfmoon along the upper lash line
Inglot loose eyeshadow #72 on the bottom lashline, mostly in the outer corner
Inglot soft Precision Eyeliner #26 on the waterline
Diorshow mascara

L'Oreal Color Infallible Eyeshadow in Permanent Kaki (009) review

Today I'd like to briefly review L'Oreal Color Infallible Eyeshadow in Permanent Kaki. Click here if you want to learn more about Color Infallible eyeshadows in general as this post is going to focus on this particular shade only.

Permanent Kaki is a shimmery khaki green which leans slightly towards silver undertones. It applies smoothly, like all eyeshadows within the range, and lasts all day. This shade looks particularly good on warmer complexions, that is why my Mum is the owner of this little jar now and she looks way better wearing it than I do.

Below you can see Permanent Kaki swatched on NW20 skin.

And here's my failed attempt at make-up creativity. I thought khaki would combine well with this rusty orange shade but it didn't. At least not on my skin tone.

Stila matte eyeshadow in Fire
L'Oreal Color Infallible in Permanent Kaki in the outer corner
Catrice gel liner in Mambo Nr.2

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, 28 January 2013

wintry look no.2: silver sparkle

I called this eye make-up silver sparkle but it turner blue in the pictures. The gloomy weather outside makes it almost impossible to take reliable pictures.

Products used:
Nars Pro-Prime eyeshadow base
Maybelline Color Tattoo in Infinite White used as an eyeshadow base
Inglot eyeshadow #143 all over the movable lid
NYX Jumbo pencil in Milk in the inner corner
Lorac White (from thr Pro palette) as a transition shade
Chanel Ombre Paupieres eyeshadow #70 to add some sparkle
Inglot eyeshadow #498 in the outer corner
Stila smudge liner in Halfmoon on the lower lashline
Kryolan cream liner in Ebony along the upper lashline
Diorshow mascara

Kryolan Cream Liner in Ebony review

I adore cream or gel liners but a good liner is hard to get.
There are a couple of requirements a liner needs to fulfil to be classified as a good one.
1. creamy and smooth
2. highly pigmented
3. waterproof and non-smudging
4. go well beyond expiry date without drying
5. remain usable even if the consistency seems to be dry (eg. Bobbi Brown)

Here's what the manufacturer declares about this liner:

And the product most certainly delivers what it promises  to do. Kryolan liner seems to be one of the best cream/gel liners I've ever used.
It's so smooth you can create thick and thinner than a hair  crisp sharp lines.
It's insanely pigmented, thanks to which you don't need to go over your line a couple of times.
It doesn't smudge and lasts all day. I tested it on the waterline, although I hardly ever wear a liner there cause it doesn't last long, makes my eyes smaller and interferes with my contacts, and I must say Kryolan performed very well on my waterline. It lasted longer than other lines and it felt less uncomfortable.

The manufacturers promises flawless performance of the liner within 6 months of opening, I need to wait till then to see what it looks like after that date. I hope to use it much longer cause there's no chance of using it up within 6 months.

I also need to mention the packaging, which strongly appeals to my taste. It comes in a pretty little jar, made of matte glass, with an aluminium lid embossed with an image of theartical mask. 

All in all, this is a perfect eyeliner. Unfortunately no other shade speaks to me cause I'd definitely like to have more of these. 

disclaimer: received in December 2012 Glossybox 

Sunday, 27 January 2013

Nivea Aqua Effect facial wipes for dry and sensitive skin review

The only reason for which I buy facial wipes is to remove fall out from under my eyes. That's why I like them to be soft and well-saturated with a cleansing lotion. I thought that wipes meant for dry and sensitive skin will satisfy my needs but unfortunately they didn't.
I've used the complete package and from top to bottom they felt dry, so dry that sometimes I dampened them with my micellar solution. I found it hard to wipe off the fall out and I can't imagine taking all my make-up off with these wipes. They didn't cause any irritation or redness or any allergic reaction of any sort, but they simply don't work, that's why I definitely won't repurchase.

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.

Saturday, 26 January 2013

Affordable make-up: Catrice Absolute Eye Color eyeshadows in C'mon Chameleon (410) and My First Copperware Party (400) review

Catrice C'mon Chameleon (left), My First Copperware Party (right)

I'd heard people raving about Catrice eyeshadows but I somewhat felt repelled by the cheap and plasticky packaging and simply didn't feel like buying them. 
Then I started to fancy MAC Club eyeshadow and I heard that Catrice has an almost exact dupe of that one, with MAC store being so far away from where I live and the original Club being practically unavailable for me I finally gave in and went to the closest drug seore and left with 2 Catrice eyeshadows: C'mon Chameleon which is the dupe of Club and My First Copperware Party, which was supposed to be a dupe for MAC Satin Taupe, which I've got but I wanted to see how close these dupes really are.

Catrice C'mon Chameleon (left), My First Copperware Party (right)
Let's begin the review with Catrice eyeshadows themselves and finally I'll compare one of them with MAC.
As I've said, I don't like the packaging and nothing is gonna change this, it simply doesn't appeal to my taste, though technically it works really fine and it's very practical. It's sleek and simple, it's easy to store them one on top of the other. The case is made of clear plastic so you can see the shade through the lid. 2g of the product cost about $4
Catrice C'mon Chameleon (left), My First Copperware Party (right)

C'mon Chameleon is a gorgeous duochrome eyeshadow. On the surface it looks like dark green with somewhat teal or turquoise tones but underneath it there's a reddish brown base. Overall it looks like brown dusted with turquoise sparkle. It's so pretty and unique. 
I feel it's somewhat close to Inglot loose eyeshadow #85(reviewed here), but Inglot seems to have a stronger brown base.

The eyeshadow is beautifully pigmented, it's very soft, so the brush picks a lot of product. It's not particularly powdery, but tap your brush well to avoid fall out.
Being the owner of oily lids I wear all my shadows over primers, and worn in this way C'mon Chameleon lasts all day without creasing or fading. 

Catrice C'mon Chameleon 

Catrice C'mon Chameleon 
Catrice My First Copperware Party

My First Copperware Party is less complex, but still it's a very pretty and high-quality eyeshadow. 
The shade is a wonderful mid-tone taupe with shimmer. It's soft and smooth like butter. I like to use it as my base colour or transitions shade which helps other shadows blend well.

Catrice My first Copperware Party (left), MAC Satin Taupe (right)

It's hard for me to say whether MAC Satin Taupe and Catrice My First Copperware Party are EXACT dupes, but for sure they're very very close.
There is a slight difference in texture, MAC seems more creamy and Catrice more powdery, when looking very close on them both swatched on my fingers MAC seemed a tiny bit warmer and darker and it has more of a sheen, whereas Catrice seems more shimmery. When swatched on my wrist Catrice seemed more pigmented and therefore darker. However, these differences are so slight that you need inspect them both very closely to be able to tell the them apart. After being deeply in love with MAC Satin Taupe I must admit that I liked Catrice one just as much or even a bit more. I guess I has to see to believe it myself, but there's absolutely no point in paying about 4-5 times more for a MAC eyeshadow, which is actually smaller than the Catrice one (1.5g and 2g respectively).
Catrice My first Copperware Party (left), MAC Satin Taupe (right)

Catrice My first Copperware Party (left), MAC Satin Taupe (right)

You might have guessed already that I'm not interested in getting MAC Club any more and my collection of Catrice single eyeshadows is going to grow.
It seems that no Catrice eyeshadow is permanently in stock, they' re available for some time and then they're replaced with something new, so if you're interested get them now cause they might be gone in half year's time or so.

Hand here comes one of the looks I created using both Catrice eyeshadows: 

in a sunny room

MAC Paint Pot in Painterly
NYX True Taupe as a transition colour
Cartice C'mon Cameleon all over the movable lid
Catrice My First Copperware Party used to help blend the edges
MUFE Aqua Eyes eyeliner pencil in 20L
Clinique dual ended mascara

away from the sun

away from the sun

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.

Friday, 25 January 2013

Urban Decay Naked Skin foundation in 3.5 review

Being a big fan of Urban Decay I just couldn't resist getting their Naked Skin foundation. I bought it a long time ago, so I can say that having used up over a third of the product I'm ready to write a proper review.

  • lightweight
  • medium coverage which beautifully perfects my skin
  • fairly matte, but not dry
  • no need to set it with powder
  • lasts all day on me
  • good colour match, 3.5 matches my NW20 skin really well
  • practical packaging: the bottle is quite tall but it's plastic, therefore it's not heavy, there's some sort of rattling device which helps to blend the product well while shaking before use, as recommended)

  • runny (this may be an advantage as well, actually)
  • may be streaky so take your time blending it in
  • tends to become heavy and cakey if you build it up, adding more layers spoils the effect
  • has a weird smell, like the yellow liquid glue I had as a child

Urban Decay Naked Skin is a really good foundation for those of us who like lightweight foundations. I personally won't repurchase, the only reason being the smell, which I find somewhat repulsive. There are so many other products on the market that I don't need to be forced to put up with it.

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.

Thursday, 24 January 2013

Wintry Look no.1: chilly blues

I got somewhat inspired by the frozen snowy landscape outside my window and my make-ups started to reflect my wintry moods. Today, look no.1 - the chilly blues. 

Shiseido Shimmering Cream Eye Color in angel used as an eyeshadow base and on the lower lashline
MAC Brule to highlight
MAC Tilt on the movable lid
Too Faced Cop a Teal in the outer corner
Lorac Pro White to blend out the edges
Diorshow mascara
MUFE Aqua Brow

in the winter sun
 Urban Decay Naked Skin foundation
Laura Mercier loose powder to set the foundation
Skinfood Salmon concealer 
e.l.f. booster to set the concealer

away from the sun

Stila stay all day liquid lipstick in Beso review

Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick is, as the name suggests, a liquid lipstick which applies like a gloss and within a minute or so it dries to a matte finish and sets to give saturated, highly pigmented lip colour that last and lasts.
"Lasts all day" is obviously a metaphor, but the lipstick is indeed one of the longest lasting lipsticks I've had. I suggest applying a very thin coat, thicker ones tend to look cakey in the end and the product is so madly pigmented that you really don't need to layer the product at all.
Beso is a very bright, saturated red, leaning towards warmer tones but, surprisingly enough, I looked really good wearing it in spite of the fact that having pinkish complexion I should opt for more blue-based reds.
The only problem with wearing such bright colours is that when they fade they reveal the pinkness of my lips at the inner edges, but I suppose it's unavoidable.

You must have noticed that swatches are missing and I'm writing about the lipstick in the past tense. That's because my Mum has snatched this lipstick from me and she seems to have no intention of giving it back. She loves it dearly and says it's one of the best lipsticks she's ever had and she wants me to order more shades for her.

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.

Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Model Co lipstick/gloss duo in Dusk and Striptease review

This Model Co lipstick/lip gloss duo arrived at my door in one of my Glossyboxes a couple of months ago. I'd never heard of such brand before and when I saw the nude shade of the gloss my reaction was a kind of meh. But obviously, I wouldn't be myself if I didn't give it a go.

To my great surprise the quality of the product is amazing. The lipstick goes on so smoothly and it has a moisturising, almost balm-like feel to it. The shade is a brownish nude, which looks surprisingly flattering on me, without sporting a kind of "so 90's" look.
The gloss also surprised me with its quality. Again, it feels more like a lip-care product than a beauty one. The shade is a very sheer kind of peach with some glitter in it. It goes well with a wide variety of nude and coral lipsticks.
I seem to have saved the best for the end: both the lipstick and the gloss smell amazing. They smell of something very familiar, something edible, sweet and fruity but I find it hard to figure out exactly what.
The combination of all these features makes it a high quality, luxury product.

However, the duo is not without flaws. 
First of all, neither the lipstick nor the gloss are particularly long-lasting. You need to be prepared to reapply often.

Secondly, the packaging sucks. It's too big, sturdy and heavy to be carried around. It hardly fits my make-up bag. On the side of the tube, there is a mirror which theoretically you could use for any touch-ups on the go. The thing is that you actually hold the part with the mirror when you apply any of the products. Clearly someone who designed the packaging had no idea of how you use the product.
What's more, considering the retail price of the product, the packaging looks kind of cheap and tacky and the lipstick cap has already began to crack, even though I don't use the product that often and I've never dropped it.

And finally, the price and availability. 
The product itself is of excellent quality but the packaging is really bad, considering all this I don't think it's worth the $39 it retails for. I might be tempted to explore other products within the brand, eg. separate lipsticks or glosses in other shades if they were available in my local Sephora. Ordering any of them on-line, without seeing them first is out of the question.

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

OCC Lip Tar in NSFW review

OCC Lip Tar in NSFW 

Lip Tars are OCC's flag product. There are plenty of mee-too products everywhere around, yet it's the Lip Tars that  repeatedly get enthusiastic reviews of plenty of bloggers.
They are incredibly pigmented liquid lipsticks which you apply with a brush, eg. the attached one, which is perfectly usable.
They come in a large variety of shades, some of them totally insane, some of them actually very pretty.

OCC Lip Tar in NSFW

I personally have mixed feelings about Lip Tars. Having read their reviews on many renowned websites, like Temptalia for example, I thought them to be some kind of miracle product. They're supposed to last all day long, survive a couple of coffees and a hearty meal, fade evenly and stain your lips. I noticed none of these. They last on me no longer than any long-wear lipsticks, drinking substantially influences their performance, they fade after a couple of hours and disappear after light lunch.

In the light if the aforesaid a question arises: why did I buy 4 of them and am planning to get some more? Well, if it hadn't been for the hype which preceeds them, my opinion of them would be much higher.
They are lightweight, pigmented and last decently long and the shades are so pretty.

OCC Lip Tar in NSFW 

NSFW is a gorgeous red. Bright, yet fairly dark and cool-toned. It suits my pinkish complexion perfectly. 
It applies evenly and I don't notice any feathering. As with all bright colours, it needs a liner to apply it evenly.
The finish is neither totally matte nor glossy. The lipstick is quite comfortable to wear, though it tends to feel drying after a couple of hours. I suppose those of you who happen to have drier lips could be dying for a lip balm or a gloss, the application of which obviously affects the tar's performance.
Although the shade is very intense, I didn't notice any staining of my lips.  

Here's what NSFW looks on my lips, no liner was used  

OCC Lip Tar in NSFW (direct sunlight)

OCC Lip Tar in NSFW (away from sunlight)

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, 21 January 2013

Affordable make-up: Catrice lip liner in Wood you? (050)

I got Catrice lip liner in....... when I was looking for a nude lip liner. I don't wear nude lips particularly often so I didn't feel like splurging. The Catrice one seemed to be the most reasonable option.

The pencil requires no sharpening, you just screw it to release more product.
The shade 050 is a perfect nude which goes well with a variety of lipsticks or as a base for glosses.
Qualitywise it's not the best pencil in history, but it's very decent. It's soft and glides on smoothly but it doesn't set , therefore it does not produce an unsmudgeable contour.

Verdict: a decent product for those on a budget.

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.

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Glossybox January 2013

January brought the worst Glossybox so far. There wasn't a single product I was excited to have.
The box contained:
Bluemarine shower gel and body lotion 
a tiny bottle of Schwarzkopf hair oil
Siquens serum 
Kryolan blush with Glossybox logo
and bonus Glossybox eye mask

There's nothing more to say, I'm not happy. That's all.

Lorac Pro Palette review

There's been so much hype about Lorac Pro Palette that I simply couldn't resist it. For those of you who haven't heard of it I'll just say that it's a nude palette which differs from the plethora of nude palettes available on the market in one substantial respect: half of the shades are shimmer and entire top row of them are matte. The palette is sold with a minature of Lorac eye primer.  

Colourwise, this palette offers a wide variety of most popular shades of nudes and neutrals, everything from white to black or light beige to dark brown. There are a couple of shades rarely seen in neutral palettes eg. I.T. Pink, which is a whitish pink; Mauve, which is named very appropriately; Garnet (reddish copper) and Deep Purple (blackened purple).
Texturewise, both matte and shimmery shadows are extremely soft and pigmented (Mauve seems less pigmented than others), however, they are very powdery, especially the matte ones. A touch of a fluffier brush may send clouds of dust in all directions, so beware of fall out cause it may be immense if you aren't careful. I always do my eyes first so I'm not bothered. The matte shadows remind me very much of Inglot mattes. They're all highly pigmented, you get a great colour pay-off, they don't vanish during blending, but they're powdery and produce dust during the application. All the shimmers, on the other hand, are lovely, they are soooo creamy, pigmented and blendable. I absolutely adore Pewter and Slate.

I feel it's pointless to describe the shades one by one, the photos are fairly reliable. Cream makes a very nice highlight colour, though very fair. I.T. Pink is pinker in real life than in the picture. It's a kind of pink with strong white base. Taupe is my favourite out of these 8 shadows. Nicely pigmented, blends well, makes a nice base shade. Gold is too copper for my liking. Champagne and Nude are too similar.

Mauve is probably the most unique shade in the palette, unfortunately it's not as pigmented as other shades and it doesn't look flattering on me. I absolutely adore Sable, which is just a tone or two darker than Taupe, but still within the same colour range. Espresso is also very pretty!
Pewter is a gorgeous shimmery taupe, the name is totally misleading. Check out what pewter looks like and you'll see it's nowhere near to the shade in the palette.
Garnet is a lovely reddish copper and Slate is a blue-toned dark silver.
I'm quite disappointed with Deep Purple, it looks prettier in the pan than when swatched. In reality it's a kind of muddy black with shimmer and faint purple undertones. Looks good in the crease but I doubt anyone would guess it's purple.

And here's what they look like in practice:

NYX Jumbo Eye Pencil in Milk
Slate all over the lid, blended out, Deep Purple in the outer corner. I didn't want to use Black cause it seemed so cliche.

NYX  Jumbo eye Pencil in French Fries
Taupe all over the lid, Sable along the lashline.
This looked a bit washed out so I added Pewter in the centre of the lid and Espresso along the lashline and I liked the outcome much better (bottom right picture above)

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.