Loose Powders -Laura Mercier - Secret Brightening Powder
luftballon 6/20/2011 8:12:00 PM
This was one of those instant HG items for me. For years I've set my undereye concealer with translucent loose and pressed powders hoping to make it last longer since I'm an eye rubber and they never last on me. Powdering my undereye always made them look dry and cakey as well, so I picked this up since it seemed to specifically suit my needs. It works amazingly well (at least over Lancome Effacernes). I have a small crease under my right eye that I'm self conscious about (at 22!) and after I pat this on over it, it magically disappears. Or at least makes it barely noticeable. The powder is incredibly fine-milled so it doesn't make my thin undereye skin look dry, nor is it sparkly, in my experience. It also makes Effacernes last significantly longer and also prevents my mascara from smearing under my eyes. A fluffy brush is recommended to apply this but I didn't want to buy another brush and wanted to use something I already had. I use a larger, flat brush with natural hairs from Inglot (28PO) that I got a while ago that ended up being too big to use for my eye area. It works perfectly! I pat it on over my concealer, and it gives a bit of a brightening effect, too, without being OTT. This is not meant to be used as a concealer by itself--it's supposed to supplement and set it.
Concealers -Pixi - Correction Concentrate- Brightening Peach
luftballon 6/14/2011 6:32:00 AM
The itty bitty green pot is really cute. The peachy salmon shade is great at covering up my dark circles but it looks dry and cakey and accentuates lines under my eyes. Also, there is no lasting power, it disappeared within two hours even after being set with powder. I wanted to love this but I was disappointed! It was expensive for a drugstore concealer (got mine at Target). I've swapped it away.
I love this so far. It gives light coverage you normally wouldn't find in TMs, and gives a dewy finish (imo, a bit shiny for my taste). I have to use a separate concealer for any spots, but this is great for covering up the redness on my cheeks. It even gives a little bit of coverage to my undereye circles, so I use less concealer. The texture is thicker than what I'm used to, but it is easy to blend with fingers or brush. I like applying this with a flat foundation brush, it gives me the most coverage. I usually put some powder on top because it's too shiny/glowy for my taste. But some days when I'm in the mood, I'll only powder my nose, chin, and along the jawline to keep the dewiness on the cheeks, and add a cream blush on top. Great for a healthy, well rested look/illusion. It doesn't cling to dry spots or blemishes, and can't imagine this ever caking since it's sheer and light. I didn't expect this to have much staying power on my skin but it definitely lasts until I take off my makeup at night, so I'm definitely impressed. Usually SPF in foundation is a pet peeve but this hasn't flashed white so far. It's pricey for a TM, but the quality reflects that. I'm an NC20 and Veil 06 is a perfect match.
Highlighters -Becca - Nefertiti Pressed Shimmer Powder
luftballon 2/25/2011 2:07:00 PM
I was going through a matte blush phase before I stumbled on this, and it's rekindled my love for shimmer blushes. Most shimmer blushes make my pores look huge, but this somehow doesn't, and it gives the most natural looking, non-OTT glowy finish. On my pale NC20 skin, I can use it as a nude blush--sort of like a light bronzer. It blends effortlessly on the skin. I find it kind of similar in color to Lancome Miel Glace, but Miel Glace is peachier on me and doesn't have the same kind of shimmer. The powder itself is extremely soft and delicate, easily shatterable. Sometimes my brush picks up too much powder because it's so soft, so these PSPs are definitely not very portable. This will be my go-to shimmery blush whenever my skin needs a pick me up!
This was my first Zoya. I love it so much, never seen another purple like this one! It's a deep purple with very fine gold and reddish pink shimmers. Stunning and sexy! The brush was a bit too thin for my taste but it still applied well with no streakiness. Only needed 2 coats + SV and it's been lasting for days so far with only minor tipwear. The finish by itself was kind of dull so topcoat is a must for a glossy finish. Looks great on short nails and on toes, as well. I wasn't too impressed by swatches online but I'm glad I ordered it now. Quickly becoming my favorite purple...
Concealers -Revlon - Age Defying Moisturizing Concealer (New) [DISCONTINUED]
luftballon 1/4/2011 12:19:00 AM
This would be my favorite concealer if it lasted longer on my skin. I love the satin finish it gives and it's the most moisturizing concealer I've tried. It will never look cakey! It has more coverage than Lancome Effacernes imo and also has a more natural looking finish (Effacernes can look dry sometimes). I wish it came in more shades because I prefer a pink undertone to cancel my undereye darkness. But it has high coverage so it adequately covers my medium circles. My favorite way of applying it is by patting it on with the ring finger and setting it with translucent powder. I'm NC20 and Light/Med matches me perfectly. I use it on blemishes and acne scars too, but I still prefer Effacernes for the lasting power.
God I love this. This is my favorite blush for days when I skip foundation, when I want to look more "natural" but glowy and uh, alive. This de-zombifies my complexion. It looks like such a bright pink in the pan that I wonder how it manages to still look natural and pretty. It is MAD pigmented, I use a 188 dupe to barely tap at it. It's buildable so you can apply it sheer for a lightly flushed look or more heavily for night. The color is a matte warm, vibrant pink with a touch of coral, and the texture is very creamy and blendable. Beats MAC's Blushcremes (sticky, a PITA to blend) by a mile, price and quality wise, and even the packaging is uncannily similar. Lasting power is also excellent, lasts through naps and heat.
I'm a fair yellow-toned gal so I was afraid this might show up too pink/cool on me but I absolutely love it. This is "my lids but better" and is very subtle. It isn't too frosty, so it works great as an all over lid color or brow highlight. I agree with another reviewer who described NL as giving a "wet" look to the lids--it brightens and illuminates and gives a glossy sheen. I like using this on the inner lids with whatever crease color I end up using that day. It goes with everything since it's pretty neutral on me. I also use it as a brow highlight when I something more natural and not as frosty as Ricepaper.
Shows up as a peachy nude on my pigmented lips (NC20). I love the color and it's very pigmented. I was afraid of the Matte formula since I tried a friend's Ruby Woo and it was awfully drying. As long as I wear a lip balm with this (which I always do for l/s) it doesn't dry out my lips and lasts for hours before it needs reapplying. I like how it looks matte, but for nighttime I layer a peach gloss over it, like Revlon's Life's A Peach. It's one of my favorite combinations.
Brows -Unlisted Brand - Model in A Bottle Long Lasting Eyebrow Sealer
luftballon 11/29/2010 12:26:00 AM
Like the poster below, it was starting to get a little embarrassing emerging from some luvin' only to see my brows have half disappeared. This is good stuff. Definitely "locks in" and sets your brows, lasts until you remove it yourself. I have sparse/thin, patchy brows (Asian) and I absolutely refuse to leave the house without filling them in, no matter how late I'm running :p (if you saw them you'd understand, I look like an expressionless splotchy alien or something). It comes with 2 applicators--a spoolie and a brush that looks similar to nail polish applicators. You can use any brow product with this, and it will seal it. It didn't budge when I rubbed my brows with my fingers. This stuff is watery and smells like alcohol, but once it dries, it's there to stay! However, don't expect this to work miracles for brows drawn on bare skin. I noticed in places where they are especially thin/sparse, where there is more skin than hair (the inner parts of my brows, where the brows start, in my case) it tends to fade a little. So I imagine this would only help drawn-on brows last for just a limited about of time, depending on your activities (brows are srs bizness) before fading. I think this product is much more effective at sealing pencil/powder for already existing brow hairs. It does feel a bit "stiff" on my face, but I don't mind it because it works so well and does what it claims. It's a bit tricky for me to apply as well; I use the spoolie but I wish the applicator was longer so there's more control. EDIT: IME, this works much better with brow powders than waxes. Somehow it doesn't smear away when I brush this stuff on and lasts much longer than with wax based pencils, with less fading. I use my old Shiseido brow compact with this. I've upped the lippies to 5.
Eye Primer -Too Faced - Shadow Insurance, Anti-Crease Eye Shadow Primer
luftballon 11/27/2010 2:50:00 PM
TFSI > UDPP if you have normal to dry lids. I've went through two tubes of UDPP before I got fed up with that awful, wasteful packaging. The texture was also harder to spread on my lids evenly, and made shadows so hard to blend (especially mattes). With continued use, it made my lids flake. I've been a TFSI convert for a while now, I'm nearly done with the tube. It has a creamier texture than UDPP so it's much easier to spread evenly. It IS greasier than UDPP but as long as it's mixed well in the tube (since it tends to separate if left alone for a couple days), I don't find it too oily. No problem blending shadows over it either, even without waiting for it to dry. The packaging is also A+, in a sleek, cute hygienic tube with a pointed tip. I only need a tiny dot for each lid. My eye makeup lasts 6+ hours before it begins to fade, but it doesn't crease. The only con is that it doesn't hold my eye makeup longer than UDPP does (8 hours). I recommend UDPP for oily lids and TFSI for dry.
Very natural looking blush, a subdued rose pink color. But there are so many cream blushes out there that are much better for the price (like NYX), MAC's are sticky and hard to blend, so applying with fingers rubs away foundation. I use an 188 dupe to apply which makes blending easier. It's less pigmented than NYX, imo, but leaves the skin sticky so my hair can stick if I don't set it with powder. It does look pretty on fresh bare skin but the staying powder is MEH and the color doesn't wow me, it's very dupeable.
This is just too intense for my NC20 skin. I have to be extremely careful with application or I look sunburnt. It's extremely pigmented (I used a 188 dupe) but it's the hardest to blend out of all my powder blushes. The color is a lovely brick rose-y red on the skin. I like using it for a pop of color on the apples after contouring the cheeks. That's the only way it looks good on me! It gives a nice berry flush suitable for fall and winter. I doubt I'll ever use it all up because i don't use it that often. This is my first NARS blush (since Albatross is technically a highlighter). Eh I don't really get the hype with these blushes.
This is my first Chanel lipstick. The color tends to shift on me depending on my lip pigmentation, which is sometimes lighter, other times darker (most of the time, about a medium mauve-y pink). But it remains gorgeous and MLBB on me, a lovely reddish rosey pink with some brown... hard to describe. When my lips are lighter it pulls more pink, but never orange, which I'm grateful for! I wish I could describe the color better but whenever I look at the color I'm sort of stumped because it looks multidimensional. The texture beats every lipstick I've tried, including Guerlain, MAC, and YSL. It's creamy without being too creamy, applies flawlessly from the tube, and is moisturizing. I have very dry lips that tend to be picky regarding lipstick, and flake even under lip balm if the lipstick formula is especially bad. This never makes my lips flaky and it lasts longer than any other formulas, and doesn't settle in the lines. It also makes me feel absolutely fabulous whenever I wear it, to boot. It's a great "finishing touch" to wrap up a polished, classy look.
Mixed feelings about this brush. Yes, when I first got it, it completely transformed my world of eye makeup, it made blending so easy and flawless. Fell deeply in love, etc, etc. It took me a long time to be able to hand over the cash for this, but I don't think I exactly got my money's worth despite the versatility of this brush. Because if there's one thing I absolutely cannot stand, it's expensive, handmade brushes that shed. It sheds quite a bit when washing gently with diluted Bronner's Magic soap or even baby shampoo. And quite frankly, it pisses me off watching my expensive brush pretty much start to fall apart in my hands, with bristles starting to splay in different directions. I expected MUCH better quality from MAC. I experienced the same with the 182 (kabuki), which made my face look HAIRY after using. I just can't win with MAC brushes! But I adore the unique fluffy, slightly paddled shape of the brush. It's perfect for the crease and for blending, even if it is a bit itchy. My 217 is definitely less dense now from the shedding, but it gets the job done. It's still remains staple in my arsenal because I haven't found anything similar or better for my eye shape . For ladies with smaller creases, or hooded/Asian eyes, I recommend the Revlon contour brush instead (excellent for the crease, outer V, blending).