Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Soften the Mood

For the past 2 months, I have found myself constantly reaching for this eyeshadow combo. It is MAC's soften the mood, one of the mineralize eyeshadow trios that came out in the "In the Groove" collection.

I love the color combination of this trio - neutral and wearable, fun, and oh-so-easy. I like to wear the middle shimmery rose color all over my lid, the soft matte brown color in my crease, and the light blue on my lower lash line. The rose color in the middle has silver and gold shimmer running through it and is my absolute favorite out of the three. I've already made a noticeable dent in it and am desperately on the lookout for a color similar to it (any suggestions?) The blue is light and wearable and it works surprisingly well with the neutral colors.

Here's what it looks like on:

       On the rest of my face: 
- Clinique superbalanced makeup
- MAC Margin blush 
- Revlon 3D extreme mascara
- Clinique gel liner 
- NYX orange soda lipstick

Crappy pictures I know, but I'm getting better... :)

If you can still find this trio at your MAC counter/store or if you can someday find it at a CCO, I definitely recommend you get it!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Liners I've Been Loving

I recently purchased these eyeliners from Smashbox and I have been loving them! 

It is the smashbox Wish for the Perfect Pencils Collection - a box set of 4 mini eyeliners a metallic slate grey, a dark violet, a gold, and a black. This retails at $16 which is a great deal and I believe this is a limited edition set in which $1 of every purchase will be donated to the Children's Miracle Network. 

I have always wanted to get an eyeliner from smashbox because they swatch so beautifully in the store, but I never want to dish out the 20 bucks just for an eyeliner. This set is great because you get to try out 4 different colors, which are not part of their permanent line (I'm such a sucker for these deals). 


The colors are really pretty and they glide on super smooth. My favorite is the gold one, I love to use it on my lower lash line and even on the inner corner. They have amazing staying power and don't smudge. The only negative is that they are not super pigmented once you've got them on your eyes. This may be a negative for some who like their liners to give intense color, but I find that its a nice alternative that's easy to throw on and have a really pretty, natural look.

I really like these eyeliners, as I knew I would, and would maybe even consider buying a full size one. I've got my eye on the Indigo Ink and Black Violet ones. It sucks that they don't have a full size of the 14k because I really do love it!

What eyeliners are you into at the moment?

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Skincare Love: Checks and Balances

For me, finding a good face wash can be difficult - many of the ones I've tried are either too abrasive and it feels like I've dipped my face in a mint paste, or they are too gentle for my liking. 

Origins Checks and Balances is the perfect in-between. It is super gentle, but also contains spearmint oil that leaves your skin feeling refreshed and unbelievably clean. This cleanser is most effective on combination/oily skin - it contains broad leaf kelp extract to alleviate excess oil production and wheat protein which contains amino acids and proteins that are easily absorbed into the skin, helping to increase the firmness of your skin, and lock in moisture in your dry areas. I love Origins products because of their all natural attitude towards skincare. Among the natural ingredients used in this cleanser are chamomile, lavender, and spearmint oil. These essential oils promote cell regeneration, helps with acne and irritation, and also act as decongestants. 

It is marketed as a "frothy face wash" and in my opinion this is a perfect description of how it works. This cleanser has the most beautiful lather I have ever experienced in a face wash; it makes face-washing a treat for my skin.

Overall I am very pleased with the results I get from this cleanser. It leaves the face feeling soft and well...balanced! One thing to note about it, however, is that while you rinse the cleanser away, it does give your face with that "too clean" feel where your hands seem to stick to your face. This doesn't bother me though, as it doesn't effect how my face feels afterwards. 

I love Origins Checks and Balances!

What's your favorite cleanser? What are some reliably safe skin care brands?

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Drugstore Mascaras

I'm always on the hunt for the perfect mascara, and although I've found a few that I really like (MUFE Smoky Lash, Bourjois Volume Clubbing Mascara, L'oreal Voluminous) I am always wanting to try more because its so easy to go through a tube, and because mascara adds so much to a makeup look.

So over the past month or so, I have been testing out a few mascaras that I picked up at the drugstore. 

The first one I tried was the Rimmel Waterproof Sexy Curves. 

I got this for a vacation, and because I had heard such good things about the original Sexy Curves that I thought this mascara was going to be amazing. Perhaps the waterproof formula is different than the original, but I hated this mascara. When I first opened the tube, it felt like there was hardly any product on the wand. The formula is very dry and hard to work with, it is one of those that never completely dries, and after spending far too long trying to coat my lashes with the product, my eyelashes were not extraordinarily curled at all. The brush is plastic and tugs at my eyelashes - it also hurts like hell when you prick yourself in the eye with this. I definitely do not recommend this mascara. 

Slightly disappointed, but not discouraged I also tried L'oreal's Telescopic in Carbon Black, which is another drugstore mascara that is celebrated in the beauty community. 

Out of all the ones i tried, this mascara gives the best lengthening effect. Unlike the sexy curves, this plastic brush was extremely easy to work with, and because its so thin it is great for going behind the lashes and getting those hard to reach places. Although it gives you amazingly long lashes, it is not so great at thickening your lashes. I think this mascara would be really good to layer under another, more volumizing mascara. 

Another L'oreal mascara I tried was the Bare Naturale. This, is supposedly Jennifer Love Hewitt's holy grail mascara, so I thought I'd give it a go. 

This mascara definitely does what the name implies - gives you really pretty, natural lashes. There's absolutely no clumping with this mascara, and your lashes look really separated and full after one coat. The thing I like most about this one is that it doesn't feel like you have mascara on - no hard, crunchy lashes. This mascara gives you your lashes, but better; it's perfect for minimal makeup days and natural looks. 

I also tried Maybelline's The Falsies mascara. 

The best thing about this mascara is the brush. It's a curved brush that is fatter on one side and thin on the other. Something about this makes the application feel so nice. You can use the thin side to apply the mascara, especially to the harder to reach areas, and then use the fat side to brush it through. Amazing! And great for those people who end up getting mascara all over their eyes (me). Overall the formula is good, it gives you nice thick, separated lashes, but I wouldn't say it's my favorite. 

My favorite of the bunch was this one 

This is Revlon's 3D extreme mascara, and it is one that I just picked at random. I wasn't expecting it to be very good, or for me to like it as much as I do, but I guess you should never judge a mascara by it's tube. 

This mascara does it all - lengthens, volumizes, and separates. After one coat my eyelashes look dramatically fuller and thicker, and after two coats I've got eyelashes that people notice and compliment me on - which is rare because I have short, little asian eyelashes. The brush is tiny, and is shaped sort of like a spiral, wider on the bottom and tapered at the top. I don't know how this little stubble of a brush works - but it does. I love this mascara and I would definitely recommend it!

What's your favorite mascara?

Monday, October 11, 2010

Current Obsession: Lush Dream Cream

Fall has arrived and with it comes dry and flaky skin (well for me at least). Thankfully for Lush's dream cream, my skin has stayed beautiful moisturized, which is why I have recently been hooked on this body cream.

It's amazing! Incredibly thick and creamy, it's loaded with essential oils that give your skin intense moisture and leave it feeling soft all day. I use this at night on my arms, legs, hands, and feet. Because it is so thick, I have to let it sit and soak into my skin before going to bed, but I don't mind because the results are so worth it! 

I once spent an entire class period feeling my arms because I could not believe how soft they were. Yea. 

It smells very herbal and has a strong jasmine scent. I happen to love the smell, but I also feel like it's an acquired scent, as I hated it at first. 

I think this cream really does wonders for the skin. I've found that it has significantly reduced the bumpiness in some areas of my skin and I many people have said that it is an amazing treatment for eczema. 

I've used a little more than half the jar and I have had it for around 6 months now, so it's definitely long-lasting and ridiculously addicting to use! I would definitely repurchase this, and I would love to try out the other body moisturizers that Lush makes. 

Monday, October 4, 2010

Recent Purchases

What better way to start off this blog than with a haul?
This week I headed to CVS and my local mall for some retail therapy. I got a collection of drugstore products, and also some things from MAC, Lush, and Origins that I thought I'd share with you guys.

I got a new L'oreal Studio Secrets Magic Perfecting Base. This is my second jar of this primer/base and I love it. It really makes a big difference to the appearance of your skin, smoothing out fine lines, large pores, and bumpy skin. It is a fluffy cream that blends into a consistency that is comparable to higher end primers like  Benefit's Porefessional.

I also got a new foundation, the Superbalanced Makeup by Clinique.

This foundation is for combination/oily skin, and although I have only been wearing it for a week I have really been liking the medium coverage and natural finish that this foundation gives when applied with my fingers. Maybe I will do a review on this when I've played with it a little more. 

I got two lipsticks: Soft Nude by Revlon and Blankety by MAC.

Soft Nude (right) is a beautiful creamy peachy nude, and Blankety (left) is rose pink with mauve-y undertones. They are both such pretty, wearable colors, I know I will get good use out of them. 

I also got a cream blush from MAC called 'Brit-wit'. This is my first blushcreme from MAC and I am excited to try it out. Although the formula does seem a little..sticky, the color is amazing, almost like a cream blush version of the blankety lipstick. 

Also from MAC I got some brush cleaner.

I also picked up a new nail polish called 'Lollipop" by Essie
It's a bright bright red color, very summery, but who cares? 

As for skincare, I got a second bottle of Tea Tree Toner from Lush (This stuff is amazing). 

And also, a serum from Origins called 'Modern Fusion'

For a tiny bottle, this serum makes big claims. It is supposed to be a "skin transforming catalyst" that dissolves dead cell buildup and acts to restore the smoothness and glow in your skin. "Dullness, roughness, sallowness...and signs of sun damage appear to disappear." It sounds too good to be true, but I trust Origins as an effective skincare brand and I hope this product reinforces my love for Origins. 

I also got these freebies from Origins with my skincare purchase!

Pretty good size samples of Modern Friction scrub, Never a Dull Moment cleanser, and GinZing eye cream. 

So I satisfied my shopping craving, but for how long...who knows?