Thursday, June 28, 2012

Laura Mercier Tightline Cake Eyeliner in Deep Teal

I spied the Laura Mercier Cinema Noir collection at a local counter a few weeks back. It felt strange seeing what felt like a fall collection but isn't labelled a fall collection and summer hadn't even begun when I saw it. Now summer is in full throttle and I'm still not in the mood for brooding shades of teal and espresso but I did use my new Deep Teal cake eyeliner.

I collect the Laura Mercier Tightline Cake Eyeliners. Even if they came out with a pink one, I would probably still buy it. Deep Teal is very dark teal color and I think it's best used as an accent color. You can tightline with your choice of Ebony, Bleu Marine or any other black or navy liner and then pop some Deep Teal above it. I would pair it with a dose of mascara and a soft coral lip on an otherwise bare face. The look transitions from summer to fall.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Cargo BeachBlush in Sunset Beach

I was looking to get a little sumthin' sumthin' to play with and scored a serious discount on this tin of Cargo BeachBlush in Sunset Beach. It's a blush and bronzer combo that depending on the shade you pick, may work better as one or the other. In the case of Sunset Beach, I say definitely blush.

Cargo BeachBlush in Sunset Beach

There are four strips of color: a peach, a bronze, a pink and a gold. It's highly unlikely that you would use each shade individually on cheeks or around the face although you could dip an eyeshadow applicator/brush in there for a quick highlight. I've used the colors two at a time, carefully moving my brush through just half the pan. But, more often that not, I'd just swirl the brush through all four shades for a shimmery rosy brown effect.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Too Faced Primed & Poreless Bronze Tint Skin Smoothing Face Primer SPF 20

It took me over a year to finally get down to this review. When I received this sample, the product hadn't even launched yet. Now it's summer again and I thought it was simply high time for it.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

L'Oreal Infallible 24 HR Eye Shadows (Smoldering Plum, Liquid Diamond)

L'Oreal Infallible 24 HR Eye Shadows in Smoldering Plum and Liquid Diamond)

Some new L'Oreal Infallible 24 HR Eye Shadows for you! The brand seems to have released a few more since the original launch. I missed out on a tiny batch but am totally psyched to show you the latest ones that I picked up last week.

I adore plum shades. But sometimes they're not done right. I lamented the fact that L'Oreal didn't release the shade Burning Black in the US but all is forgiven now that we have Smoldering Plum.

Monday, June 18, 2012

L'Oreal Infallible Lacquer Liner 24H in Navy

L'Oreal Infallible Lacquer Liner 24H

I spied a L'Oreal display of new products at a local Ulta store some time last week. There were new pots of the Infallible Eyeshadow and these gel liners. Cream, gel, clay... I've tried a bunch of liners in a pot before and I hold no special love for any of them. But on a whim, I thought I'd spend the $10 and grab a pot of the Navy blue one. Comes with a lidded brush too.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Weekend Ponderings...

I was at Ulta the other day and a few things caught my eye. A new L'Oreal display for example. These are some of the items that I'll be playing with all weekend...

(item label was partially erased for this picture)

Cargo BeachBlush in Sunset Beach

Friday, June 15, 2012

Sephora by OPI Nail Polish in Dear Diary

Have you seen the July issue of InStyle magazine? Salma Hayek wears Sephora by Opi's Dear Diary on the cover. I didn't realize this until I got to page 12 where they detail the cover shoot. So off I went to my nail polish bin to find my bottle of Dear Diary which has sat there unused for a good long time now.

Dear Diary is a semi-sheer pale pink that complements anything and everything. Salma Hayek is wearing a dress of practically the same color so it's perfect for the cover. But really, you don't notice it. It's one of those colors. Like if you wanted to show off your engagement ring and you don't want people to be distracted by the color of your nails.

I had many shades of nail polish like this and had started giving them away in the last few years to declutter my polish bin. Some shades are more peach, some are more pink, and they are all sheer. I'm happy to reach for a shade like this when I simply can't decide what to wear or I don't have time for a fussy manicure. Like Laura Mercier's Oh La La. Like Maybelline's Sheer Satin Slip. The formula isn't bad. It applies reasonably well and dries quickly. I recently had it on for a few days and it didn't chip. Then again, signs of wear are less noticeable with sheer shades. I tried it with two coats, as I have in the picture but it looks less streaky with just one. If you're interested in Dear Diary, it's a Sephora exclusive and it's $9.50 a bottle.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Target Summer Beauty Bag

Once again, time for a free beauty bag from Target! Mine arrived in the mail yesterday.

I got this particular bag through a Target Style promotion on Facebook (they may still have bags to give away so it might be worth a look) but I believe that it is the same bag that they are giving away on Target's website when you purchase items from their Best of Beauty list. Inside the bag:

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Some Retractable Brushes...

The last few months have had me off on day trips north and south, which means two or three hour rides at a time and ridiculously long days. As part of my preparation for these long trips, I've been trying to beef up the touch-up kit in my purse with the most essential things, including a good, retractable all-around powder brush.

What I wanted of the brush was very straightforward. Good quality (little to no shedding), not heavy, retractable and with a cover. Although I wasn't particular about the actual shape of the brush, I had hoped for something with a hefty amount of actual hairs that I can use with pressed powder, blush and bronzer.

I'll be showing you four brushes in this post. Three of them have man-made hairs, two of them are from the brand Too Faced and they range in price from $18-39. The first brush is the Sephora Collection Hot Hues Retractable Kabuki Brush, $18, which was the first brush that I tried for this experiment. I regret not having done this post sooner because this brush is now sold out online. If you like it, perhaps a store or two will still have it in stock. It came in three colors: pink, blue and the one I have here, orange.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Cle de Peau Beaute Concealer

Cle de Peau Beaute Concealer

InSyle magazine touts the Cle de Peau Beaute Concealer as one of its Best Beauty Buys for 2012. This is the very first product mentioned in the article and I agree with the makeup artist they interviewed about its texture being neither too tacky nor creamy. The texture is completely different from any other concealer I have tried. It's buttery but not waxy. It's easy to blend and leaves a matte finish. I don't ever set it with powder and it seems fine.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Origins A Perfect World Antioxidant Cleaser with White Tea

I remember having read somewhere that it's pointless to put anti-aging ingredients in cleansers because you just wash them away. Cleanser is the one product that doesn't sit on your skin for a long time since most are meant to be rinsed off after use. So I questioned myself, when I purchased a tube of Origins A Perfect World. Am I paying for antioxidants that I'm just rinsing off with every use?

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Diorshow Mascara and Diorshow Maximizer Lash Primer

I have a lot of respect for the classic Diorshow mascara and I know that it is loved by many. I've used it a few times in the past and although I think that the formula is very good, I have always had difficulty using the large brush. My last tube was purchased as part of a buy 2 get 1 free offer, so I received this particular tube for free.

In the first couple of weeks of use, I remembered how nice and evenly Diorshow applies. It is more of a volumizer as opposed to a lengthener but does a nice job of making my lashes look just a little more... there. I don't have a lot of lashes to work with and they're not long. I typically have to use a lash curler to get anything of an eye-opening effect. Also, my lashes are brown. So I have to pick the blackest black mascara whenever possible to make them pop.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunblock

Neutrogena makes one of my favorite sunscreen products, the Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunblock lotion. It comes in various SPF ratings, from 30 to 100+. The Ultra Sheer line itself comes in a lotion, a liquid and a spray. I reviewed the liquid last week (click here to read).

I tend to buy this product at Costco because I get a better price there. I usually end up with the SPF 45 version that comes in a twin pack, with some other sunscreen item/s for free. Right now they offer it with two 1 oz. tubes of the same sunscreen with SPF 55. While you're there, Costco has the Neutrogena Fresh Cooling Body Mist Sunblock SPF 45 in a twin pack with a free 1 oz. tube of the sunblock lotion and a lip balm. There is also a promotion on the Neutrogena Wet Skin sunblock sprays that is worth having a look at.

Going back to the product on hand, I like this particular sunscreen because it is not greasy like other lotions. It comes out as a creamy, white liquid but once applied, it has a matte finish and, true to the words on the bottle, a lightweight, clean feel. It is lightly-fragranced and absorbs quickly enough. Sometimes, I see the lightest white cast from it but most of the product gets completely absorbed within a half hour. Bottle directions say: Apply liberally on face and body 15 minutes before sun exposure. For added protection, reapply after swimming, excessive sweating, towel drying or extended sun exposure.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

NARS Trouville Nail Polish

Although I've gotten out of my comfort zone a number of times this year, I really do prefer light pinks and peaches for my nails. NARS Trouville is one such everyday neutral peach-pink (official description: seashell pink) that I would happily put on year-round. It has a jelly-like finish that looks good with two coats although to get to the opacity below, I used three light coats.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Exploring The Shops at Target: The Webster

The Shops at Target is a collaboration with five specialty brands: Cos Bar for bath and beauty, Privet House for home essentials, The Webster for apparel, The Candy Store and Polka Dog Bakery. Having looked through the different products available, I was most attracted to the collaboration with the clothing line from Miami, The Webster.

On the first day that the items hit the racks, I went to the nearest Target store. I looked through the ladies tops, bottoms, dresses and cardigans. They didn't have the full selection at my store and I suspect that no store does. Some of the items are online only but there are items for men, women and kids too! I loved the hues they incorporated. The navy and the peach, in particular. I liked the palm print a lot. But I was a little confused about the length of the dresses. It seemed that they were either maxis or minis, nothing in between. I also didn't like some of the fabrics that they used on the maxis but took a chance with the sleeveless jersey dress with the navy and green color-blocking and one of the racerback tanks with the palm print and ruffle trim at the bottom.

NARS Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil in Buenos Aires

I love a good nude lip but I have a hard time falling in love with jumbo lip pencils that need sharpening. Something about the NARS Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil in Buenos Aires had to have been really special for me to take the plunge.

NARS Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil in Buenos Aires

Monday, June 4, 2012

NARS Trio Eyeshadow in Ramatuelle

For summer, NARS has released one limited edition eyeshadow trio called Ramatuelle. It features a silver, an icy peach and an apricot shade (descriptions from the NARS website). The combination didn't make much sense to me at first. I felt that it lacked a color with more depth to work as a trio. I was also unused to the warm/cool combo of the silver and the icy peach. Dare I even say that a seemingly orange shade (apricot) was terribly daunting. However, this trio surprisingly works. The combination keeps things interesting. There being three shades to work with means you can use them one at a time, two at a time or all three at a time in different ways.

NARS Trio Eyeshadow in Ramatuelle

These three are all colors that I have worked with before, just never together. I typically use silver with blues and blacks to do heavily smoked evening eyes. I would use an icy peach as a lid wash or a highlight although I am unlikely to reach for one that is frosted or highly shimmery on a regular basis. An apricot shade is something I may pair with beiges, browns and golds although this apricot makes me apprehensive because it looks very dark in the pan and it's matte. Matte formulas can be tricky to work with.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Friday, June 1, 2012

Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Liquid Daily Sun Protection SPF 55

I thought I'd start rolling out a few of these sunscreen reviews now. I'll start with a product that I use year-round, the Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Liquid Daily Sun Protection SPF 55. This is a sheer liquid sunscreen designed mostly for use on the face. It has a very runny consistency and sinks right into the skin. This throws me off somewhat because I find that I'm never sure how much of it I need to put on to guarantee an SPF of 55. You always read that people never put on enough sunscreen to get the SPF on the label and if I were to use a shotglass worth full tablespoon of this product to cover my face and neck everytime I use it, I would have to buy a new bottle every few days.

Without knowing whether or not the SPF works as promised (and not really being able to gauge that well when using any sunscreen), I'm going to limit my reviews to product consistency, general texture, color and odor, ease of use and a general like or dislike of it.