Now that my Full Ní Soft is nearly at the end of its life and most of my tube has been vanquished, I really canít help but be a little sad. I know Iím going to miss it once itís gone. I personally think itís pretty strange that mascara with minimal hype and a somewhat inconspicuous packaging has really managed to wow me more than any of Maybellineís other more popular mascaras. Full ĎN Soft doesnít have a gimmicky brush style, no gaudy embellished tube, not even really outrageous claims. It just doesn't need all of that! The difference between Full Ní Soft and other Maybelline mascaras is that, while the claims donít play to oneís imagination too much, it does EXACTLY what it promises to do. Nothing less. I think thatís pretty rare in the world of mascara. For girls that already have relatively long lashes, Full Ní Soft is a godsend. It defines and thickens without adding too much length for less dramatic daytime wear. Itís easy to layer and unlike many other mascaras touting to give a ďfullĒ appearance, it doesnít clump. Sure, thickening lashes is easy. Most mascaras can do that- many just arenít able to make it look like you have more lashes than youíve already got. They just tend to give the appearance of having about 6 really fat, sticky, spidery lashes. Yuck. With Full Ní Soft, you donít have to worry about that. Itís possibly the least fussy mascara that Iíve ever used, volumizing or otherwise. Itís a mascara that I can wick on in the morning without much thought and I donít have to waste time trying to comb it out or making sure the brush is turned the right way (Falsies, Iím looking at you). At night after Iíve come home and Iím tired, I donít have to do any extra scrubbing on my face to remove Full Ní Soft. It comes right off with no hassle when I need it to but stays put until Iím ready to get it off. It doesnít transfer at all either. The formula is actually as soft as the name implies. Because of that, I find that Full Ní Soft really doesnít flake up. Itís buildable and cooperates well when layered with other mascaras because it doesnít make my lashes too course and stiff. I never get that ragged twig kind of look with it. The flexibility of the formula seems very kind to my lashes and Iíve never noticed any lash loss from it. Full Ní Softís brush is pretty large and bristly. It can be kind of a pain if youíve got small eyes like I do, but the result is worth it. Sure, youíve got to clean up with a q-tip from time to time, but you get lovely full and fanned out lashes in return. Not too bad. Ladies with shorter lashes might not be as impressed with Full Ní Soft as I was, but itís definitely wonderful and reliable daily mascara regardless. I think itíd be perfect for beginners or people who just find the whole massive-lash phenomenon a little too much for them. It gives a really flattering natural result that doesnít scream, ďLOOK, IíM WEARING MASCARA!Ē I love it. Iím not sure whether Iíll purchase it again because Iím always on the hunt for the next best thing. Honestly, I wouldnít be surprised if it DID wind back in up my arsenal. Weíll see.
Iím not really at all sure of where to start with LíOreal Feriaís Starry Night. I took a leap, not only in changing my color (I normally opt for Jet Blacks) but in taking a chance and doing the dying at home which is something that I havenít done in almost a year, thanks to a bout with Revlon ColorSilk that resulted in having inches cut from my hair. What I liked about Starry Night was that it didnít have a really horrific smell as some box dyes are notorious for. You know, the ones so potent that you apply it while keeping a bandana or something over your mouth and nose like a bandit for fear that you might suffocate. No? Maybe thatís just me then. Anyway, I have TONS of hair. Itís naturally curly, coarse, extremely thick and currently reaching just below the middle of my back. One box of Starry Night coated my hair evenly and without much hassle at all. The formula dispersed well and I was pretty impressed because trying to get a comb through my hair is a nightmare on its own, never mind when itís saturated with color. Eek. The directions were simple and truly, we had no real issues with applying it. The texture is great and didnít drip or stain badly either. Having the sort of history with at-home box dyes and the paranoia of them that I do, I made sure that I kept the dye on for not a second longer than the directions suggested. Upon washing it out, I noticed that my hair was tangling and feeling just extremely dry. Though itís been a while, I genuinely canít recall a time when any other dye made my hair feel quite as dry as this one has- even pre conditioned. ďOkayĒ, I thought, ďThe little tube of conditioner will fix this right up!Ē WellÖnot really. I mixed the conditioner included with the box as well as my usual deep conditioner and left it on for about two hours with a shower cap. I wasnít really impressed when I washed it out. My hair still just felt sort of stiff and parched. The blue in this color isnít too noticeable on my previously black dyed hair, not even on the (very long) roots which were previously sort of an ashy medium brown with lots of copper strands. Iím going to take a wild guess and assume that the blue in the dye neutralized my red tones and just made them gleam silver rather than blue? Itís a nice change and the color does have quite a bit of shimmer to it as advertised. The blue is very subtle though present. Mostly it just looks quite silvery somehow. To be fair, it is considered a ďBrightĒ Black rather than a blue one, so Iím not too disappointed. Iím not going to comment on the longevity of this color simply because; wellÖI donít think I care. I doubt Iíll use it again just because of how dry it made my hair. I know that there arenít many semi-permanent, no-bleach drugstore blue blacks out there, but I would definitely avoid this if you have somewhat dry hair anyway or use heat on your hair pretty religiously. There are certainly more gentle permanent dyes out there if your hair is dry and you canít get a hold of a light semi-permanent dye. For those of you with light colored hair or greys- BEWARE! This is likely to make your hair a royal blue. If thatís what youíre looking for and your hair is pretty resilient, then by all means, LíOreal Feriaís Starry Night might be the one. Otherwise, I think Iíd shop around.
Through out years and years of dying my medium-reddish brown hair various shades of ebony, it's fair to say that I've cycled through brow products just as much as I have brands and hues of dye. Sure, I've suffered a great many disappointments- from parading about in a full face of makeup sans brows and looking quite undone (when I was much younger, of course), to using carbon black shades which made my brows look pasted on and pencils which caked or left strange undertones present on my skin when blended out. Thankfully today, I have nothing but praises to sing for Nyx's Black/Grey Eyebrow Cake! I was more than content to be using Maybelline's Define-A-Brow pencil in Soft Black (Discontinued, sadly) a few months ago. It was and still is an excellent product, though when I began growing my brows into a slightly straighter, angular, and more androgynous style I found that the color was much too dark and made me appear a little more masculine than I desired. Enter grey eyeshadow! I'd mostly just used matte black shadows tapped off and blended out on the back of my hand prior to my discovery of grey. While this worked for me somewhat, I found that often times my brows were still a bit harsh- especially during the daytime. After experimenting with grey using a shimmery shadow I had, I decided that I'd take the leap and invest in matte grey products as the effect is much more natural and softer looking despite the fact that my brows are a muted black on their own. I'd tried Nyx's eyebrow pencils before and though I wasn't impressed by that particular shade/product, I decided to give them another go. I could not be more impressed by Nyx's Eyebrow Cake. It's honestly probably going to be my first declared 'HG' product! The two colors in the little kit are grey, one a darker but still soft cool-toned medium charcoal and the other a perhaps oh-so-slightly warmer but much lighter slate grey color. Despite having naturally black brows, the lighter color gives the most natural look I've ever been able to cultivate. It honestly looks like my brows are truly that full and groomed all on their own, like they just grow that way all by themselves. I couldn't believe it! The darker grey is perfect in areas where my brows are still growing in and frankly still pretty bald. It is also good for nights when I feel like doing an all out POWER BROW and offers just enough definition to keep it from looking like I have stick-on eyebrows. The little tools included in the kit are rather adorable but I have yet to use them and doubt I will unless I'm traveling, so I can't speak to as how well they work. I can't say for the wax either as I haven't used it, but I certainly will update this review when I have. Honestly, the shadows themselves are utter perfection and I'd probably overlook these little extras if they happened to suck. We'll see. All in all, I feel incredibly grateful that I took the plunge and decided to get Nyx's Eyebrow Cake. The price is more than excellent for the quality of the products and even more so for the convenience of having your tools, the powders, and wax all in one nifty little kit. I truly never thought that I'd have plush, natural looking brows and had resigned to the fact that since my hair was stark black, my brows would forever be severe and ostentatious looking. I'm absolutely in love with the fact that I can now rock softer, carefree sort of looks and let my brows take a back seat as well as having the option to play them up and really let them be a main feature in a look without having them steal the show entirely. If your hair is Jet or Blue/Bright Black and your brows are naturally medium-dark, I couldn't recommend this product enough. It's really been a complete godsend for me.
I fortunately wound up to be one of those people who has absolutely no trouble at all growing my nails. Ever since I quit biting my nails cold turkey about 6 or 7 years ago, I've been growing my nails to daring lengths and and constantly answering random strangers' most burning question: "Are those real?!" Unfortunately, I'm not impervious to breaks, splits, peeling, etc. Like most of us out there with really long nails, I prefer to keep mine covered for protection and a little extra strength. What's the point in having long nails if they look raggedy, right? I purchased the Sally Hansen Triple Strong with intent to use it as a base, hoping of course that it was would strengthen my nails some both while wearing it and after some continual use. I can honestly say that I fell in love with it when I bought it. It make my nails look acrylic. The shine was phenomenal and they felt so strong that I no longer hesitated to run my fingers through my hair (an act that usually causes some snagging). The formula is a nice thick consistency and it doesn't take much product at all to cover an entire nail, even if you've got very long ones like I do. I can truly say that I suffered far less breakage to my nails during the time I was wearing this stuff consistently. As much as I was captivated by this product initially, I don't think I'll purchase it again. I'm going to agree with some other reviewers who mentioned the brush. Sally Hansen polishes usually have very nice, wide, luxurious brushes on them. Why not this one? My second qualm is that after 2 months of owning this, the formula has become completely gooey and nearly unusable. Putting it on is a hassle because getting an even coat is impossible and I'm constantly having to break up all these annoying little strings of polish that stick to the brush and wind up hanging off of my nails. This product wasn't too expensive (I bought it for $8 at Rite Aid) but it wasn't exactly cheap either. It definitely wasn't cheap enough to get only 2 months of wear out of it when the bottle is still pretty much half full. Now that it's become thick and gummy, it isn't worth the painstaking application and removal process. It does nothing as a base because it doesn't provide an even surface for polish. It's worthless on it's own because it's bubbly and uneven looking. It's a great product initially, but I'm sure that there's something better out there.
I hate to say it, but I am writing this review with quite a heavy heart. No, itís certainly not because I dislike Maybellineís Define-A-Brow pencils and feel as though they are a waste. In fact, I believe that they are without a doubt the best and most natural looking pencils that Iíve tried to date. My sadness only stems from the fact that my color, Soft Black, has been discontinued. Yes, right after I tried them and fell in love. Iíd hunted for that particular shade in stores for a long while, after hearing a lot of hype about these pencils and discovering through Maybellineís site that they made one of these in ďSoft BlackĒ. It wasnít until I gave up, bought two of them off of eBay and discovered that they were perfect when I check back with the Maybelline site only to find that the shade was missing from the Define-A-Brow page. Crap. If youíve got pitch black hair like I do, Soft Black would be perfect. Itís an amazingly natural and unbelievably flattering shade of dark charcoal grey. Thatís right- No awkward blue or purple undertones! Itís just a pure, neutral dark grey/soft black. If youíve got black hair and actual muted black eyebrows like I do, surely you realize what a gem these are for that exact reason alone. For the longest time I had been using a black Nyx pencil, despite being absolutely unhappy with it. When the pencil came in contact with my skin (which happened often as my brows are quite sparse in some places), not only did the pencil sort of cake up but the blue undertones in it became incredibly obvious. Blending it out or attempting to brush the color through only made the blue color more apparent as well as made the pencil go everywhere. The only reason why I didnít switch sooner was because I completely despise and have had really tragic experiences with manual brow pencils. Also, many companies donít seem to make black pencils at all, which narrowed the field greatly when I finished off my other pencil and started shopping around. The aside from the perfect color, the main reason why I love Maybelline's Define-A-Brow is because the tip is so fine and narrow. Itís easy to create soft, hair-like strokes with and Iíve never had any issues with it caking up. Youíve REALLY got to have a heavy hand to wind up looking like Groucho Marx with these pencils. They perform amazingly well and give soft, natural results both alone and in conjunction with powder, so theyíre great for days when I donít want to spend much time on my eyebrows too. I canít complain about the tips snapping off because I only twist mine up little by little. Yes, itís true that these donít twist back down should you twist up too much (I was forewarned- thanks MUA!) and that IS annoying, but I do love these none the less. I canít speak for how long these last. My only hope is that the two I purchased on eBay carry me through most of the year at least. If they donít, I certainly love these enough to hoard all of the ones I can buy off of eBay and Amazon. The color and design are truly superb! Now that Iíve discovered them, I canít imagine doing my brows without them!
I have to say that if you've never tried a NARS Semi-Matte, you really don't know what you're missing. Even if you're not a lipstick purveyor like myself or you're not really a fan of matte lipsticks of any kind in general, these might really surprise you. Heat Wave has to be one of my favorite lipsticks genuinely in part because of it's amazing texture. Actually, it has to be my absolute favorite where texture is concerned. The pigmentation isn't so dense as in say, MAC's Lady Danger, which comes out as being an almost toxic, neon red-orange whether you attempt to dab it on or give it a full swipe. This lipstick is quite adaptable in a way that other red-oranges don't seem to be because the texture is so buildable and the color it's self isn't ridiculously trendy looking or over the top. Heat Wave is certainly a color that can be worn as a very light and beautiful blush of color on the lips for occasions when a much more natural look is desired. I might be the minority here, but I don't think Heat Wave is *that* unique where the actual shade is concerned. While I own quite a few red-orange, corals, and vermilion type shades in my (ashamedly) massive red lipstick collection, I have yet to find an exact duplicate but do have many shades that are quite similar and in lower price ranges. I most certainly couldn't deny that Heat Wave is a gorgeous color though. When I saw it in Sephora I knew that I had to try it on and once I did, I was 100% sold. On me it appears to be more red than orange (say a 6:4, red/orange ratio) but is still sophisticated and classic. It's definitely the most serious and grown-up of the similar hues that I own and much more versatile as a result. However, like I said before, Heat Wave has all of them beat as far as texture and lasting power is concerned! In the winter, when the moisture balance of my lips is seldom where it should be, Heat Wave is the only matte lipstick I can wear for hours on end without excessive flaking or utter discomfort. It takes so little of this lipstick on my lip brush to cover my entire mouth completely and once it's there, it truly stays put unless I wipe it off deliberately. When I do wipe it off, I find myself relieved time and time again because it never smears or stains my skin. If there could ever be a perfect lipstick formula, I'd believe that NARS has it down pat with their Semi-Mattes! Heat Wave is one of those colors that puts a little pep in your step without being gaudy or obnoxious. Sure, the price is kind of steep but I feel like the texture alone genuinely justifies it. The hue is absolutely divine and the texture makes it a real dream to wear.
Lipstick -NYX - Round Lipstick in Orange Soda #588
RustGospel 1/27/2012 3:48:00 PM
While Nyx's Orange Soda is easily the most unique shade in my (rapidly growing) collection, it's also sadly one of the most difficult lipsticks that I own. I knew what I was getting into when I purchased this lipstick, having Googled swatches months before and being somewhat put off by how greasy this lipstick looked in some of them or how impossible the hue appeared to pull off. Fortunately, I ended up being terribly surprised by how complementary this lipstick is with my skin tone when I actually bought it. While it's not exactly a nude on me, it is a very lovely, light and pastel creamsicle type shade with very apparent grey/white undertones. I can perhaps see this working as a nude shade on girls who are in the medium skin tone spectrum, particularly those with yellow or bone colored sort of undertones or those that otherwise look natural in peach shades. On lighter skin like mine however, it gives genuinely 60's vibe...it definitely reminds me of the sort of colors seen on Jayne Mansfield in "The Wild Wild World of Jayne Mansfield", while she's romping around on the beach somewhere in Italy, surrounded by a bunch of male admirers. Haha. Orange Soda's texture really does leave much to be desired. When my lips are treated with balm at all, whether I've wiped it off or not prior to applying Orange Soda, it streaks and slides all over the place. When my lips are even remotely dry or flaky, Orange Soda builds up on spots where my lips are chapped and looks like some kind of dangerous orange fungus. I've managed to combat this a little by first dabbing this lipstick on and then building it up from there layer by layer. I have to pat this lipstick in around the edges of my mouth so that it doesn't look like some kind of strange lip decal that I could simply peel off. As you might imagine, lipstick this creamy wears quickly and in the most unattractive fashion. If you're not in the mood to keep a watchful eye on your lipstick all day or night, Orange Soda should probably be reserved for occasions where you don't plan on eating, drinking, kissing, or really even moving your lips at all. While I am truly amazed by the color of this lipstick, I find myself beyond disappointed with the texture. It really does break my heart that Orange Soda is so fussy, but I'm fortunate to have paid so little for it.
I can't say that I'm entirely sure as to how I somehow managed to not only become entranced by, and eventually come to fall in love with the infamous Exhibit A. The whole ordeal was somewhat of a whirlwind affair, one wrought with lust and intrigue! Well, you know... I want to say that initially I was drawn in by the sheer audacity of the color. The shade reminded more of one that I might encounter in a lipstick, definitely not something I'd come across in a blush- let alone a blush by a company who's blushes are unbelievably pigmented to begin with. It was bold and unapologetic, I was repulsed and yet so magnetically attracted! I was genuinely surprised to find out that not only was this preposterously torrid red-orange shade completely wearable, but that it's actually natural looking on the skin. After my initial infatuation grew, I knew it was only a matter of time before I found myself in my local Sephora, having a staring match with this startling shade in person. I felt as though I was being coerced, propositioned by this color... I couldn't, I wouldn't! But oh, how I wanted to so badly...I was too timid and felt like by buying Exhibit A, I'd be playing with fire. Honestly, I feared that it would be too easy to come out the whole ordeal looking (sun) burned. The sales attendant who spotted me and ran to my rescue didn't hesitant to whip out a brush and sweep Exhibit A on my face, more than anything just to prove me to that such a scalding beast could be tamed- but only with a little caution and a relatively light hand. Exhibit A transformed my dowdy blushless face with it's strangely erotic red (after)glow in a way I never could have imagined. I had been seduced! While it very much looks just like the sort of natural blush that fans out over one's face after a bit of *ahem* intimate relations or an otherwise amazing work-out, with a lighter hand it's definitely more innocent and subtle....a little more Snow White than intrepid sex vixen. Either way you go about it, you're always apt to come out with a very fresh natural color so long as you adjust the application tools and method to suit the intensity you want for your skin tone/look. I wouldn't say that Exhibit A is an essential product, but it's an excellent one to splurge on. The pigmentation is amazing, the color it's self is rather unique (especially now that Sleek's Scandalous has been discontinued), it'll last you forever, and it's a surprisingly versatile blush. It's certainly not a purchase that I regret making!
When I first saw pictures swatches from this palette, I knew instantly that I just HAD to have it. It had to be mine. Now, this is a very unusual thing for me because never before I have I had such a feeling come over me about eye shadows. I've actually never really been a fan of eye makeup simply because the shadows that I can afford tend to be horrible in consistency as well as overbearingly shimmery. It's safe to say that I'm more of a lipstick kind of girl. Or was, anyway. Unlike many people that acquired this palette, I didn't have to ruthlessly hunt for it. I found the very last one at the first Walgreens I went to! I was elated. This is my very first legit eyeshadow palette as well the first and only (to date) product that I've ever purchased from Wet 'N' Wild and I must say that I absolutely love it. The pigmentation and consistency is nothing like you might expect from a five dollar palette- let alone one comprised of entirely matte shadows. Every color with the exception of the green and purple swatch and apply beautifully, but even those two are certainly workable. The shades are almost creamy in their consistency...very soft and smooth but densely pigmented; rarely chalky. They're not at all what I'd expected. For whatever reason, I was under the impression that sure, Wet 'N' Wild shadows/palettes (as well as any of the crappy drugstore shadows) are beautiful for those who use primer. Let me tell you, I don't use one and these shadows are still magnificent. There is absolutely NO fallout at all, and somehow they adhere well and stay vibrant for hours on my oily eyelids. I'm still shocked! The neutral side is my go to but I love having the option to mix it up a little with the brighter colors also. I've used this palette every single time that I've put my makeup on for the past three weeks and I have yet to come up with a gripe about this palette, despite that it's initial new excitement wearing away. This single palette has managed to replace several of my usual products: the really odd chunky shadows I was using that I got in a Christmas cosmetics set, the slightly shimmery, broken single eyeshadow that I was using for my brows and the unbearably chalky single white eyeshadow that I used as a brow highlight. Every color in this palette is worth owning. There truly seem to be no duds here! The color selection is slightly strange, but I think they picked such polar opposites for the palette so that it appeals to most people- if not everyone. From the girls who love walking out dolled up like a bird of paradise to the ones who prefer to be a little more soft and understated, as well as those of us who are a bit of both- this is a wonderful palette for anyone of any skill level to own. I love it. My only hope is that Wet 'N' Wild takes of all the praise in consideration and keeps this one around!
Eyeliner -Milani - Liquif'eye Metallic eye liner pencil -black
RustGospel 11/22/2011 11:57:00 PM
When I rather coyly gave in to letting my mom buy me this eyeliner from our Walmart's new Milani section, I could so clearly imagine myself giving this a glowing review weeks later, after giving it a go and coming to realize that it really is as great as everyone says it is. Well... that's not exactly going to be the case. Don't get me wrong, while Milani's Liquif'eye liner is one of the best eyeliners that I've ever tried, it just didn't meet my expectations at all. It's definitely the blackest and most opaque eyeliners I've ever used. It takes pretty much one swipe to my waterline to deliver a wonderfully jet feline type of appearance. It glides on ultra-black and very smooth. I can honestly say that this liner stays the same shade of black as it wears. Never once have I noted that it'd worn down to a dingy grey the way other liners have on me. Yes, it's very creamy and smooth as others have noted. This can be both good and bad. It's great because I'm sure it's soft consistency is responsible for the stellar pigmentation. It's bad because trying to get this pencil sharp can be a real pain. I bought this with the intention of using it especially on my waterline and as a base for my black eyeshadow. I'd read and was under the impression that this pencil sets like a cream/gel liner would, so naturally I assumed that it might stay a little better and last a bit longer than other liners of the pencil variety do. This isn't exactly true. This liner never seems to set on my eyelids at all. It creases and breaks down in less than five minutes even after being set with an eyeshadow, just like all of the other liners I've tried. On my waterline it is magnificently black but begins to gum up in the inner corners of my eyes after about twenty minutes of wear. It can make my cat eyes look like a gooey mess if I don't check periodically and clean things up carefully with a q-tip. The color still magically seems to somehow stay the same intense black even though it's practically melting off of me. It's crazy. How I wish I could have not only given this pencil a rave review but also found a product that actually stays on my eyes. Back to the drawing board I guess...
Before I start my review, I think I should reiterate what a couple of ladies here have already expressed: If you are NOT willing to prep your skin before using this (moisturizer on clean skin especially, primer is optional for me) or play around with various application methods (tools other than your fingers), then L'Oreal's Magic Smooth Souffle probably isn't for you. You'd be surprised at how much these factors alter your experience with this foundation. Really. When I first test drove Magic Smooth Souffle, I wasn't happy with it at all. I mean, I was so unimpressed that I could hardly believe they wanted so much for this stuff. My mom was raving about it so incessantly that I had to try some. First off, my mother is Caucasian but she tans in the summer. The darkest shade that Magic Smooth Souffle is available in was almost too light for her. If you've got darker skin, this foundation isn't going to be for you, sadly. Honestly, L'Oreal, what about our fabulous women of color? Anyway, when I tried out her shade (which was too dark and too orange for me), it's as though the foundation dried to my un-prepped skin instantly. At the advice of some reviews both here and on YouTube I used a stippling brush to apply it with. It clung to every line, crease, crack, crevice, you-name-it on my face. My combination skin looked and even felt ridiculously dry and tight with this on. I also noticed that despite using a color that was darker than my natural skin tone, this foundation's coverage was so light that it didn't cover my acne scars. Needless to say, I was ridiculously unhappy and washed it off immediately, leaving the hype to be nothing more than what it was: Hype. Fast forward down the road to a couple weeks later when I found myself browsing around in a local Target. Magic Smooth Souffle was on sale and for whatever reason, I was compelled to buy it (in the semi-correct shade this time) and try it out again. I couldn't understand why this foundation felt so silky and smooth on my hand yet dried my face out and made me look like a hag. I was determined to make this work. During the same shopping trip, I walked away with E.L.F.'s Studio Powder Brush and let me just say that applying this foundation with that alone made a WORLD'S difference. On my fresh, moisturized skin and buffed in with a flat top brush, this foundation is quite magical. It smooths on evenly and blurs imperfections like nothing I've ever seen before, especially in a matte foundation. I love that it can't be felt or detected at all on my skin once it's been buffed in and smoothed out. The coverage is quite adjustable, but to take advantage of Magic Smooth Souffle's higher level of coverage, you've got to get the perfect shade. Even then, I wouldn't expect it to completely cover scars or blemishes alone. If you're planning to utilize Magic Smooth Souffle's more sheer coverage capabilities, you can be a bit more lenient about the shade you choose and at least get somewhere one to three shades darker or lighter and still make it work. Yes, these run light and the coverage isn't heavy duty. I've noticed that some primers only make this break down faster than it would alone, so beware of that. I'd say it lasts somewhere around 5 hours before wearing away evenly on my skin. Trying to select a shade in the store is a major task but well worth it should you get lucky. I absolutely hate the packaging because it's heavy and too hard to travel with, but if you look past these things and can keep in mind what I've reiterated above, then Magic Smooth Souffle might be for you.
I can't say that I agree with other reviewers who say that this lip liner is a true orange. On me, especially when built up, it's got quite a red tinge to it. As a matter of fact, as I look at it in the mirror right at this moment, it appears to be almost more red than orange. As for the quality of this lip liner, I think it's definitely workable. It's not the best out there but it's not so hard that it skips or breaks off uncontrollably. It is, however, quite hard and very dry. It has to be layered multiple times before the color even begins to show up on my lips. This takes quite a bit of a time and effort, as it can look rather streaky and uneven if you don't go over it a couple times. Over all, if I could, I'd give this liner a 5 for the color and a 3 for it's general quality. As I received this in a swap, I can't judge whether or not it's a great liner for the cost but I sincerely doubt it. There are better quality drugstore liners out there, but a color like this one might be hard to find. If I may be totally honest, I'd say that NYX's Orange liner reminds me quite a bit of NARS Heat Wave lipstick. Shocking, I know! I don't feel like it'd be responsible of me to say that they're dupes since I haven't and are unable to compare them side by side, but on my lips they appear very close. As a matter of fact, NYX's Orange may have killed my Heat Wave lemming entirely had it been more creamy, opaque, and easier to apply. As a liner, it does it's job as a great base for my warm red or red-orange lipsticks but it's not the best for the price.
In case you haven't already heard, Revlon's Siren is a very creamy, dreamy peach-based orange shade with very slight hints of red. After succumbing the hype surrounding this orange drugstore shade, I found myself completely on the fence about whether or not I should get it. Even though I have quite a neutral skin tone, colors like orange, gold, and yellow really have a tendency to wash me out. When googling and otherwise researching this shade, it seemed really hard to pin-point what exactly this color looked like. In some swatches it appeared to be this red-ish coral shade, while in others it as a neon, traffic cone-esque shade of orange, then in others it showed itself to be a subdued orange-peach sort of hue. Well, if you are now finding yourself just as confused as I was, let me just say that all of those swatches are correct. This shade (and the matching nail polish) is a true chameleon. Different lights reveal completely different nuances in this shade, drastically altering the way that it looks. While wearing the lipstick and polish, I had multiple people note that it looked completely different in multiple locations. More florescent lighting shows it to be a peachy-orange shade, warm lighting gives it the appearance of being a blazing pumpkin type shade, and daylight makes it more a coral color. I won't lie, it's a really fun/interesting shade to wear just because of that. The only downside to this factor is that if warm colors aren't generally fantastic looking on your skin tone, you might run into some situations where this color really might not look how you anticipated. For the most part, I think it stays wearable because of that ever-present peach undertone. The texture is one that all of the truly classic (albeit 'retro') shades of Revlon's Super Lustrous lipsticks share. They tend to be a bit more creamy and streaky than the newer formulations, but not to point that they slide around or are a mess to apply. If anything, I think the texture of Siren makes it buildable. If you're not ready to go all out with orange lips, patting this on or carefully giving it one swipe from the tube would be the perfect way to work yourself up to the more bolder, opaque types of application if you should choose. Siren isn't a shade that gets out of hand quickly at all. I can't say what sorts of skin tones this lipstick would work best on, nor could I honestly say that it's the most flattering shade on me simply because of how drastically it adapts to different lighting. If you're in the market to test drive an orange shade, Siren might be a good place to start. It's buildable, has that nearly universal peachy sort of undertone, and is a great lipstick for those who just want to try something a little different.
Why am I just now getting one of these? For three dollars and some change, I'm surprised that it took me this long. I'll be honest. When I purchased this brush, there was an innate fear of it being ridiculously poor in quality. I was terrified that the handle would be wobbly, that the bristles would be stiff and practically stab my face. The thought of the hairs shedding on me and being unnoticed until out in public, leaving me looking like I have a wild, thick, random hair growing out of my cheek made me wary. I have black hair and have honestly had brushes shed on me and look JUST LIKE legit facial hair before...it wasn't a pretty sight. Having to pick bristles out of your already set foundation is a pain in the butt as well. Anyway, back on topic. I LOVE THIS BRUSH! It is absolutely nothing like I'd feared. In fact, it's quite the opposite. The bristles are so unbelievably soft, fine, but very dense. They never poke or scrape across my skin (Like my Walmart brand stippling brush does), nor have I had this shed on me (Unlike my Posh kabuki brush). It's quite possibly the best quality brush that I own and yet somehow still the cheapest. Never in the world would I have imagined what I was missing when I was using other brushes on my more creamy foundations. This flat-top brush buffs them in beautifully and leaves a seamless, natural sort of finish that is hard to achieve with my other brushes. Using this brush is also much less time consuming than having to blend incessantly with a traditional foundation brush. I also find that I use less product with this brush than I do with any of the others. It's an excellent buy and for the price I doubt very seriously that it could ever be beaten. I love this brush so much that I'm contemplating trading in my more expensive and trifling brushes for some E.L.F. ones. If you're on the fence about buying one of these, just get it. You'll probably like it. What have you got to lose? It's only three bucks.
First and foremost, I just want to note before I get on to my review that this was the first purchase from MAC that I've ever made. If you're a MAC veteran, some of the things in this review might be a little...trivial to you. Anyway, upon receiving this lipstick, the first thing I noticed was how sleek and compact MAC's packaging is. The circumference of this tube is slightly smaller than that of my Revlon lipsticks, who sort of seem rather bulky in comparison. The bullet its self was very defined and sharp, unlike the lower-end lipsticks that I own, who's tapered tip wasn't quite as fine and precise as MAC's. The color is a gorgeous, torrid, Texas Pete-esque red-orange. In fact, it is the very red-orange lipstick that I have been hunting ruthlessly for months to no avail. On me it is equal parts red and orange, which for whatever reason seems ridiculously hard to find in drugstore lipsticks. In those, one color always seems to dominate the other. With Lady Danger, both colors are easily perceptible. It's exactly what I wanted. Texture wise, Lady Danger is mind-blowingly vivid and matte without being even remotely chalky feeling or dry on my lips. It's a breeze to apply both from the tube and with a lip brush. I find that it takes fewer swipes across Lady Danger to deposit color on my brush than it does with other lipsticks. It's smooth but doesn't appear to slip around or streak at all during application. There's also no real needed to build this up for opacity as a result. Lady Danger's matte formula doesn't feel heavy on the lips at all but I DO find that it seems to wear in the corners of my mouth and while I'm eating faster and slightly more easily than my other lipsticks do. Needless to say, it transfers a bit more than even my other lower-end matte lipsticks do. It's still safe for kissing and eating, but it will need to be touched up more than say a thicker formula matte (like Revlon's) would. I guess that's just a sacrifice you have to make to keep from feeling like you've got a pound of lipstick weighing down your lips. Other than that, I think that this lipstick's general quality dominates my others just a little more. If you've been on a seemingly wild goose chase for that perfect, fiery red-orange shade, Lady Danger might be for you. Honestly, if you're afraid of going higher-end, I'll have you know that Lady Danger is worth less than what you'll pay attempting to find a shade in the drugstore like it. Trust me, I know. Lady Danger is a devilishly sexy, no-nonsense type of shade that is (rather unanimously) not for the more timid or natural kind of girl. It's a bold hue that requires a certain amount of attitude and is a shade that practically commands attention. Go on, be a vixen.