Eye Shadow -Christian Dior - Rosy Nude Eyeshadow Palette
citygirl123 7/5/2011 12:34:00 AM
Okay, I really do love this palette. I started to look into it when Lisa Eldridge used it in one of her videos, and she was raving about the pink color. I'm ALWAYS on the lookout for a pink color because I don't like most of them. In fact, I don't have any because I'm never happy with them. I found mostly raves for this product, so I went to the store, swatched the pink color immediately, and I was sold, even for the hefty price tag (this was my first Dior palette purchase). I love the pink shadow, I love the packaging, and overall, the shadows are very, very good quality. I own a few Chanel shadows, and would say they're both the same as far as quality. My ONLY complaint, if you can call it a complaint, is that for medium to dark skintones, the colors in this palette (with the exception of the pink one) are very, and I mean VERY, light. It's summer as I write this, and I'm normally very fair (NW 15/20 in MAC) in the winter, fall and spring. In the summer, I self tan to make myself an NW 25/30, which I don't think is super dark. BUT, the colors are barely noticeable when I'm tan-ish, which is a bit of a disappointment for me because I love them so much! So, in the summer, I can really only use the pink color, and the lightest one as a highlight. The darker brown and more neutral colors just don't show up, even after trying to really build them up. I applied these colors when I let my self tan go for over a week, so I was back to my usual fair self, and the colors were beautiful. SO, I'm really tempted to go out and buy the Rosy Tan palette (the darker of the two) for the remainder of the summer months because I seriously only wear neutrals in the summer and these palettes are beyond perfect and convenient for me. I do hear that these are both limited edition, which sucks because they're so lovely, and the PERFECT neutrals palette. So that's why I'm leaning toward buying Rosy Tan as well before it's gone forever. Overall, though, I was so happy to see a company come out with a beautiful neutral eyeshadow palette for summer! Usually they're always super bright colors, and beyond the occasional bright purple or something, I'm a neutrals girl, and was really happy with my first Dior shadow purchase! It was my own fault for not picking the right color. Oh well! I'll just have to wait for fall to use this one.
Bronzers -Wet 'n' Wild - Ultimate Minerals Bronzer in Amber Glow
citygirl123 7/1/2011 1:16:00 AM
Holy crap, this is a summer go-to product for me. I read about it as being a dupe for Stereo Rose by MAC, but while I've never owned, nor seen it SR in person, I can't attest to that. BUT, I can say that this is a great all-over bronzer that gives you a very natural sun-kissed glow at a really great price. One of the reasons I love this product so much is because it has a bit of a red undertone to it, and when your skin gets tan/sun-kissed, it turns every so slightly (or not, depending on how much you've tanned!) pink/red. So, the red undertones make it look really natural without the sun damage. Score! Because this is a cheap drugstore product, the fact that a little DOESN'T go a long way is just fine with me. I purchased mine back in March to prepare for spring/summer, and I'm not even close to halfway through it. Ar just under four bucks, buying this once a season is very easy on your bank account. But yeah, I do find that I usually start with a light hand with this stuff, and then have to build it quite a bit, depending on how dark the rest of my body is, to get the right color. Usually my face is very fair while the rest of my bosy get the sunless tanner treatment (tanner makes me break out, no matter if it's for the face or not), so I usually need to use more bronzer than normal in the summer. Yeah, can't recommend this product enough. And the fact that it's mineral-based is super awesome.
It took me a while to decide if I liked this product. For a few days there, I was almost set on returning it only because I didn't know if I loved it enough to justify the price. At $22, it's not cheap (but yeah, not crazy expensive, either), but in the end, I decided to keep it, and it's really growing on me. I've just been on this kick of only purchasing/keeping products I truly feel are worth it, that'll I'll use a lot and that I really love. I have this is the Rosey color, and I love that part of this product. I think it's unique enough to justify the price. On the lips, it's gorgeous for all seasons, and on the cheeks, if you apply it right, it gives you a beautiful flush to the skin. At first, I wasn't sure about this because I found that when I tried to blend it in with my fingers, it would get everywhere on my cheeks. I have a relatively small face/cheeks, so I was starting to look red/pink everywhere for some reason. I thought maybe the product was too creamy or something. But then I got the hang of it, and started to dab it on my cheeks with the rim of the top part, for a smaller application, and that worked so much better for me. Keep in mind the product itself is pretty wide so it's easy to over do it. The color is really buildable, too, which I also liked. I wouldn't say a little goes a long way, but you don't need a ton to get a decent flush of color. I don't think this product has a ton of longevity, so it works great as a blush base. I find on days when I'm rushing out the door, though, this is the perfect product, easy to use once you get a feel for the product, and a great multi-tasker. It gives you such a pretty glow to the face when it's on both your lips and cheeks, and the packaging makes it easy to take with you on the go so you can reapply without any brushes (which makes up for the fact that it's not super long-lasting if you don't set it with powder). So, in the end, it won me over. I decided that because this color would be gorgeous for all seasons, it was worth it to keep. If it had been just a summer color or something, I probably would have leaned more toward taking it back. But seriously, the color is gorgeous! I love it, but it's not a HG product for me. I also don't mind the smell at all. It smells like argan oil, but that shouldn't surprise anyone because all of Josie Maran's cosmetics are marketed as such and they're known for having that ingredient in all the products. So for the smell to be a negative about this product is silly. It just means you don't like the smell of argan oil which means you should stay away from the whole line.
Highlighters -Josie Maran Cosmetics - Argan Illuminizer
citygirl123 7/1/2011 12:55:00 AM
I have a love-hate relationship with this highlighter. I really think it leaves such a beautiful glow on your face, BUT, I find that it takes a bit of work to make it look natural. Oddly enough, when I apply it with my fingers, it can easily look streaky. I tried all kinds of patting motions and such, but couldn't quite get it to work for me. It just looked like two landing strips on each of my cheekbones. Not cute, right? Right. Then I started to apply it with a blush brush (I used a cheapy ELF one), and it worked much better. I also find it looks so much more natural with you very lightly powder your skin on TOP of the illuminizer just because it's really easy to put too much of this stuff on. But yeah, under powder, it gives a "lit from within" look that I'm totally loving right now. It's expensive, but you got a lot of product. I've been using it for about 6 months almost every day and haven't even used up a quarter of it. The phrase, "a little goes a long way" is so overused in the beauty world, but it's SO true with this product. I've grown to love this one. I would recommend it, just be careful with the application and take the time to make it look natural.
Lips -Stila - Stila Coconut Crush Lip & Cheek Stain
citygirl123 7/1/2011 12:30:00 AM
I wanted to love this product so much. I really did. I did so much research on it - read reviews, watched YT demos/tutorials and looked at swatches online. I decided to buy it and give it a shot because I really love the smell of coconut in the summer, AND, I pretty much always wear a bronze look in the summer, too. This seemed perfect for me. One, the color looks really muddy on me. It didn't look bronze or shimmery. Just brown, and it wasn't flattering. I found that on days when my tan was going down a little, it looked better. I do self-tan in the summer, so I'm thinking this looks much better on fair skin tones. Two, despite the word "stain" in the name of the product, I didn't find it did that. It would probably last as long as a lipstick, honestly. I didn't use it on my cheeks, though, so maybe it lasts longer on your cheeks. But as far as the lips go, I was under-whelmed with the staying power. Three, for what the product is, it's really quite over-priced. I used to use Stila lip glosses as well, and thought those were over-priced, too. $24 for a lip gloss that isn't amazing is just insane to me. I'm someone who will splurge on high end cosmetics when I feel they really are unique and awesome (I buy a lot of Chanel and some YSL stuff), but I think Stila's lip products are really over-hyped and not worth the price. On a side note, I think many of their other products ARE worth the price (eyeshadows, convertible colors, etc.). But yeah, wasn't impressed with this product. I did give it three stars, though, because I thought the smell was lovely (mmm, coconuty!) and I really do think the color would be great for fair skin tones who are going for a more bronzy look. But for me, I had to return it. I might have considered keeping it for when I'm more fair if the price was lower.
I really took me a while to decide if I liked this color. I gravitated toward it in the store because it seemed like a bronzy, burnt orange color, which I thought would be cool for summer when I want to do a bronzy goddess look. When I applied it, against my tanner skin, I felt like it was just really brown without any orange at all, which I didn't like at first. But, that said, I think it's growing on me. Ir definitely still doesn't have any orange in it, but it is pretty, and I actually got a few compliments on it today. I think, though, it's a better toe color. I put it on my toes and fingers, and it looks better on my toes for some reason. Also, my bottle was really thick and clumpy, which made it hard to apply. I don't know if it was just mine or not, but this was the most difficult polish I've ever had to try. For a few nails, it wouldn't spread properly, and I had to take it off and reapply. So, to recap, I like the color for my fingers, love it for my tootsies. The formula sucks. And it's not orange at all when you apply it, even though there's a hint of it when you look at the bottle. So, for me, it's just an "eh," ... 3 outta 5.
Eye Shadow -Unlisted Brand - Lauren Brooke Cream Eyeshadow
citygirl123 6/30/2011 10:23:00 PM
I received samples of two of the cream eyeshadows from Lauren Brooke in one of my Eco Emi boxes. I got the shades Pearl and Coco Latte, and they're actually quite lovely colors! Pearl has some shimmer to it, and is a great lid color. I wouldn't say it's super pigmented, but it has a nice sheen to it, and really brightens up the eye. Coco Latte is a matte coco brown color that is also just as lovely! I really love the colors, and as soon as I put them on I immediately went to the website to see how much the full-sized products were. At $8, I didn't think they were too bad for organic/natural products. But I noticed after a few hours of wear, they creased quite a bit, and I had even put a base under them. Boo! So, to recap, lovely colors, but they crease, even with a primer. So sadly, I won't be buying the full-sized products, which makes me sad.
I walked into a MAC store and said, "I want a cream blush that I don't have to think about. I just want to be able to put it on, and not worry about my lip color, and be able to wear anything with it." Something Special gives me just that. I love the staying power. I sometimes work 15-16 hour days, and it stays on all day without setting it with powder. I love the color, too. It gives me a very natural flush that also perks up my face, and I really can wear whatever lip color I want with it. I flippin' love this blush! I end up reaching for it all the time because it looks so great on, and it's so easy.
I love this color. Not a huge fan of Essie's brushes or formulation (the brushes are too narrow and the formulation is almost always streaky), but this one tends to be a little less streaky than most formulations, and the color is amazing. It's just a very fresh lilac that I find to be very happy and light (if that makes any sense). I own quite a few polishes (definitely at least 25), and this one is probably is in my top 10 (top 5 light colors).
Eye Shadow -Make Up For Ever - Aqua Cream No. 18 - Lilac
citygirl123 6/24/2011 10:52:00 PM
I purchased the aqua cream in No. 18 (lilac) after seeing Lisa Eldridge use it in one of her videos called "pick me up makeup (all about reviving your look after a late night out). I have green eyes, and loved the color in the store. When I got it home to try out, it made my green eyes pop like no one's business. All I needed was this on my lids, some black eyeliner, and I was out the door. BUT, because I'm trying really hard to use products without so many chemicals and preservatives in them, I decided to look up this product on the Skin Deep database, which scores products on their toxicity levels based on the ingredients. I was so sad to see that on a scale of 1-10, this product was an 8, which is the highest score any make-up product I've looked up has received. It contains aluminum powder, which has been linked to cancer (yes, yes, I know - almost everything is linked to cancer these days, but the buzz word with cosmetics right now is parabens, and aluminum powder is higher on the toxicity scale than all parabens). The FDA only approved it for eye application, but not for lips, which obviously says something about its danger levels. Not that using this product will give you cancer or anything, but for me personally, I'd rather not take the risk. REALLY disappointed because I loved this product. But I had to return it. I also purchased No. 9 (coral) at the same time, which is an eye and lip color, but I returned that one as well just to be safe. I didn't look at the ingredient list but I'm assuming it didn't have aluminum powder because it was approved for lips. You'll notice, though, that these aqua creams say what they're approved for, so use your best judgment. Sorry to be all preachy, but it just frustrates me how much cosmetic companies are allowed to get away with as far as product ingredients. Okay, end rant. :)
Eye Shadow -Tarte - Lock and Roll eyeshadow in Bronze
citygirl123 6/24/2011 10:41:00 PM
I'm in love with this product. It doesn't have a lot of hype surrounding it, but recently (within the past week or so) two of my favorite youtube beauty gurus used them, and I decided to go out and buy a couple. I bought bronze and quartz and love the colors equally. Bronze is SO perfect for summer. I mean, most bronze colors are, but something about this one is just amazing. The cream part of this product can easily be applied with the applicator - in fact, I actually love the applicator because it's really thin and gives me a precise application. The roller (powder) part of this product is just as great, and the roller ball actually works! I was so skeptical of it because it seems too good to be true, but it applies easily and evenly. Yay! You can use either side on its own, but I find they look best when applied together. The cream by itself isn't super pigmented, but yowza! With the powder over top of it, it seriously looks very similar to how Armani's eyes to kill shadows look (which are crazy expensive and have tons of hype surrounding them). The only downside to this product that I can point out is that you don't get a ton of product for the price. At $17 each, they're pretty expensive, and I have a feeling I'm going to run out pretty quickly, especially if I use them almost every day. If they made each side of this product (each tube, I guess?) a little bigger, that would improve it greatly. Overall, love this product. It seems kind of gimicky, but honestly, it works and has a beautiful finish/effect.
This review is for the Alba Botanica sunless tanner that comes in the squeeze tube (not the pump) and doesn't contain SPF. The review of this product on health food sites is very favorable, and I was looking for a cruelty-free version of the Banana Boat Summer Color, and this seemed to fit the bill: affordable, instant color that's still buildable and non-streaky. So, I picked it up. And now that I've used pretty much the entire tube, I can say that I really don't like it. One, it's marketed as a healthy, "all-natural" sunless tanner. But, if you compare this to the BB Summer Color on the skin deep database (which scored products on their toxicity levels), this one scored one or two points higher, which means that it's more toxic. At first, I assumed it was the fragrance because it's pretty strong in the Alba product, but it was actually an increased risk of cancer. So, the marketing of this product is disappointing. Two, I didn't like the color it gave me. I have yellow-toned skin, and this just made me darker yellow color. It wasn't awful, and I did look tan, but I wasn't a fan of the color. I prefer sunless tanners to have a more red undertone to make the tan look more natural and sunkissed. Three, the formula was pretty streaky. More streaky than the BB product. I even took TONS of time applying it very carefully, and also invested in one of those mitts that people use to apply sunless tanners. It still was streaky around my ankles and on my legs. And yes, I exfoliated and applied regular lotion to my dry patches. Four, the fragrance was too overpowering for me. Although, I'm extremely sensitive to fragrances, though, so this is a personal thing. It almost has a chemically-vanilla smell that smells decent in the tube, but on my skin, when you have to apply the product everywhere, it made me nauseous. It was too much. Finally, five, the color transferred to my clothes. I applied this product after I showered at night, and the bottle says to let it soak into the skin for three hours, which I did (and I just wore short black PJ shorts and a tank top for those three hours). About five hours later, I put my regular PJ bottoms on for bed, and when I woke up, they were brown and orange inside. I was bummed. My tank top was fine because it was black and I only noticed a small transfer on my ivory sheets, but not as bad as my PJ pants. Overall, I was happy to be done with this product. I wouldn't recommend it to anyone.
Really pretty color, but it's just too tough to work with. When a nail polish needs three or more coats, it's not a good formula. I'm not even sure why nail polish companies would release a color that needs three or more coats to go fully opaque. Grrr! This formula is also incredibly streaky. I did three coats on all my nails and it still looked streaky on a few of my nails. I'm thankful I bought this color online for super cheap because I probably won't be using it very often.
I really love this polish. This is definitely a very vibrant, blue-based pink, which usually doesn't look good on my warm skin, but I found this very easy to pull off. I've worn it on my toes and fingers, and always get compliments. The formula for me was great - opaque in two coats. Woo hoo! Overall, a great color for summer. I really like it.
This product actually works well for me. I didn't like it when I bought it back in April because it was a shade too dark for me and I couldn't make the color work. I almost returned it, but decided to keep it for summer because that's what I bought it for anyway, and also, because I knew I would darken up a bit. I'm so glad I kept it. The lightest shade (Ivory to fair) is perfect in the summer months when my sunless tanners start to wear off and I'm between color shades. Summer frustrates me because I feel like I need a zillion shades of foundations and TMs to keep up with my fake bakes as they fade away and I reapply. I usually have almost porcelain skin in the winter, and Ivory to Fair in this TM is a step up from that. With some bronzer added on the face, you can darken it up. As far as coverage, it evens out most redness on my cheeks and provides a nice dewy finish. I do find that you have to let it soak into your skin before you see the results, though. I usually apply it first, go do my eye make-up, and once I'm done with that, the product has soaked in and evened everything out. I do have an oily t-zone in the summer, and I don't think this product gives me the oil slick effect. I mean, it might after a full day, but no cheap TM will provide a completely matte finish all day. Overall, I'm really happy with this product. I get a great SPF for full days out in the sun, and an even skintone. Plus, it's really inexpensive. Score! The only downside I can see is the limited selection of color options.