September 27, 2012

NARS Lip Gloss in Nana

Nana was released as part of NARS' Spring 2011 collection but can still be purchased on their website. Now before you write this color off because of how it looks on the tube, take a look at the swatches below because this could well be something you'd like.

I'm writing this post now because berry-stained lips are one of the trends come Fall. Nana is perfectly suited for those who want a lip color that can be applied sheer but built to be something darker.

Nana is a deep plum lip gloss and when it comes to NARS lip products, I much prefer the original lip gloss formula over their Larger Than Life range because the original does not make my lips peel. It's very comfortable to wear.

I like wearing Nana as a sheer lip color because any thicker and it looks uneven.

This is why, my friends, never judge a lipstick or lip gloss based on what it looks like on the tube. Always swatch! ;)

September 26, 2012

Chanel Illusion D'Ombre in Abstraction & Vision

This fall, Chanel introduces us to two, beautiful, new Illusion D'Ombre colors. Abstraction is a soft, rose pink shade with an iridescent finish. Vision is a bold, glittery gold. The first thing that came to mind when I saw these: holiday makeup!

Now, the thing with Illusion D'Ombre is that the texture and the way it translates to the eye varies from color to color. Abstraction is sheer and needs some layering in order to get a more defined color. Vision, on the other hand, is so intense that it's best applied with a brush, using a light hand. It also has a tendency to flake when applied thickly.

Abstraction turned out to be quite versatile as it is suited for everyday wear yet it carries with it an elegance fit for a night out. I particularly enjoyed the casual look I achieved by just applying a light wash of this and then lining my eyes with a deep brown liner. It also looks beautiful with Vision lightly layered over it (as pictured below).

Although there are stark differences on how to apply each of these colors, both last the whole day without creasing or fading on primed lids.

I never thought these would be as wearable as they are! I love the subtlety of Abstraction and the Omph! factor that Vision brings.

September 24, 2012

Beauty Blog Coalition Round Up for September 21, 2012

Check out some great beauty posts from last week!

Polarbelle finds a new favorite with Revlon Kissable Lip Balm Stain in the perfect wine color called Crush.

Is it green? Is it gray? What is is this color?! Lawless Lacquer has a hard time describing this unique and pretty polish from Takko Lacquer.

Enter to win the entire Karite Special Hair Care line from Stephanie Louise- All Things Beautiful!

Mimi's Mani's shows another neutral beauty from Zoya.

Retrodiva's Beauty goes backstage at Mercedes Benz New York Fashion Week with TIGI who created the hair for Nicholas K's Spring/Summer 2013 show.

Fancy topcoats are the latest nail craze! Nidia of Lit From Within reviews the Facets collection from Ninja Polish - three beautiful topcoats over 4 different undies.

Cosmetically Challenged is all about peace love and happiness and she reviews the new Sation NailStock Collection.

After an almost two week trial with Armani's new Maestro makeup, the Beauty Professor weighs in on her experience.

If you want a glamorous fall look, be sure to check out The Dark Side of Beauty's Autumn Glam tutorial featuring Glamour Doll Eyes cosmetics!

From makeup to skincare to haircare, Christina from Curls N Pearls shares 13 must-try beauty products for fall.

The Blonds created a "psycho beach party" for their Spring 2013 theme. explores the show and backstage beauty from Creative Nail Design, MAC Cosmetics, and Morocconoil.

Hair guru, Guido -- is responsible for many of the elite hair trends seen during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week!

Come see the 4 Target exclusive Maybelline Color Tattoo 24 hour eyeshadows swatched and reviewed by Polarbelle.

The Stepford Witch got her hands on the Sugarpill Limited Edition Pressed Eyeshadow in @#$%!. Check out her blog for a quick review, photos and swatches!

Mama Mia! Cosmetics Aficionado is giving away a Clarisonic Mia!

BeautyTidbits shares the skinny on the new Jane Iredale Glow Time Full Coverage Mineral BB Cream SPF 25.

Sheila from Painted Ladies test drives and falls in love with Future Derm Time-Release Retinol 0.5.

The Lacquered Lady is giving away a set of Jessica Custom Color nail polishes. Be sure to enter for your chance to win!

BeautyJudy shares her Unapologetically Strong Degree Women story...what's yours? You could win $5,000 towards meeting your fitness/personal/career goal!

Sarah from Scottish Beauty Blog finds out what lies beneath. Her skin that is with the Elemis Skin Lab. The results might look like a petri dish but it's all good. Well, pretty much.

Midnight Manicures shows you the do's and don't when it comes to Essie's no place like chrome polish.

Find out the correct way to use some of Mally Beauty's products at Beauty Info Zone. Lisa learned the hard way and wants to save you from her grief.

Phyrra tells you 'how to shop for wigs online' just in time for Halloween!

September 20, 2012

Sugarpill Pressed Eyeshadow in @#$%!

Oh how I have been aching to have this ever since I found out it was being sold at IMATS. It's one of my life goals to own every single Sugarpill eyeshadow color there is. Hey, we all have our shallow hopes & dreams - this is my guilty pleasure :) 

I was so envious of those who got their hands on this Limited Edition shade from Sugarpill - it's not available on the website and I didn't know how else to get my hands on it. 

When Beautylish said that they'd have this on their new online shop, I was elated. Then I read that you could only get this if you purchase the Heart Breaker palette, I heard crickets chirping in my head. I already have that palette. I don't need another one! But I really wanted @#$%!....

On the pan it looks like it has a good amount of shimmer but once applied, it looks less. That's not a bad thing because it looks balanced, not overloaded. Apart from the shimmer, @#$%! differs from Love+ because it is reddish-pink, whereas Love+ is a matte, true red. Below are comparison swatches between Asylum, Love+ and @#$%!

As with all other Sugarpill eyeshadows, this is richly pigmented, applies smoothly, effortlessly blends, and there's no fall-out. I am very pleased with the quality of eye colors from this brand!

Although it's not a must-have, especially if you already own Love+, this is nice to have.

How do you feel about red eyeshadow? Love it or leave it?

September 17, 2012

Pirate Ship: Etude House Sweet Sweet Nail Art Stickers

When it comes to anything that has to do with nails, I have a long way to go and many, many more years of practice ahead of me. To temporarily satisfy my need for cute designs, I decided to try out nail stickers!

I posted this picture yesterday on Instagram - it's the Sweet Sweet Nail Art Sticker from Etude House and this design is called Pirate Ship. Each pack contains 12 stickers in various sizes - they're a little wide for my nails but it can be cut to size easily.

It was my first time to use nail stickers yesterday. I think it's a fun way to accessorize on the go. It's quick to apply - I just pressed it on my nail and filed the excess off. The instructions were in Korean so I'm not sure if it did it right. Oh well....

Anyway, it lasted the entire day... from 12PM to 11PM! I was able to wash my hands a couple of times and it was still on. When I got home, I noticed a tiny bit peel off the edge so I just peeled it off completely and removed the adhesive using a wet wipe.

I don't know how to make it last longer. I wasn't sure if applying a top coat would do the trick. Have you tried nail art stickers? I'd love some tips on how to wear it for more than a day!

Pirate Ship is such a cute design and since Halloween is coming up, I'll pick up another pack (or two) to wear during my favorite time of the year :)

September 14, 2012

NARS Outlaw Blush

Talk about blog backlog... I've had this blush for two months and just posted this now. Sorry!

On to the review...

Outlaw is part of NARS' Fall Collection and is a great blush for heavy-handed people. Although it looks dark on the pan, it doesn't apply as strong as you'd imagine. In fact it's so light that I had to layer many, many times (like more than 10) to get some color to appear on the swatch below.

On bare skin, it can be difficult to build color so make sure to wear liquid or cream foundation because it makes a huge difference.

The color pay-off was the only issue I had. The product itself isn't powdery and feels soft when applied just like other NARS blushes.

Outlaw has a deep rosy base with a golden sheen that is similar to Orgasm. I like layering this blush and making it the focal point of my look because I find the color really pretty.

Have you tried this shade? Do you love it or hate it? I'd love to hear about your experience!

September 13, 2012

Etude House Dear My Blooming Lips-Talk in RD302 & RD303

When it comes to cuteness, nothing beats Etude House. From the store decor down to product packaging, everything is so inviting. I also get a kick out of how they greet each woman by saying "Welcome Princess!"

And although I'm obviously not their target market, who cares?!

Etude House has a few lipstick lines and today I'm showing you two shades from the Dear My Blooming Lips-Talk collection.

RD 302 is a bright red color that applies evenly. It feels lighter on the lips compared to Edward Bess Midnight Bloom and has a glossier finish too. In fact, there's no need to wear lip gloss. I am extremely happy with this lipstick!

RD 303 is a coral shade which reminds me of MAC Hibiscus. It's pinker than MAC but they're cousins, color-wise. Unlike RD 302, this shade was a bit more challenging because it applies unevenly and emphasized the dryness on my lips. Best to exfoliate before even trying to wear this!

Between the two, RD 302 is my favorite. However, both colors have decent wear time - it stays on with minimal fading after 3 or 4 hours. The only time I need to re-apply is after a meal. This lipstick feels very comfortable because its light and moisturizing.

Like what you see? Keep reading because I will be doing a giveaway soon and one of the items will be a tube of RD 302! :)

September 11, 2012

Chanel Le Vernis Nail Colour in Frenzy

Understated and chic is the vibe I get from this year's Fall makeup trends. Frenzy is a perfect fit. The color is light brownish-grey which I feel is demure and edgy at the same time. It's one with universal appeal. 

To prove my point, here's the conversation I had with my sister-in-law, who is a generation apart from me:

SIL: Hey, Chanel just released their new nail colors.
Me: *showing my hand* Yes, I'm wearing Frenzy!
SIL: *showing her hand* Me too!

I believe this is a permanent color which is good news because I am seriously loving this.

September 7, 2012

Human Nature Mineral Eyeshadow in Sweet Innocence

Human Nature is an indie brand that produces bath, skincare and beauty products. A newbie in the beauty industry, they have a modest mineral makeup range. Sweet Innocence is one of two eyeshadow palettes being sold.

The packaging kind of reminds me of Urban Decay. What do you think?

Anyway, one thing I appreciate is that there's an actual expiration date written at the back of the palette.

Sweet Innocence features three colors: mid-tone reddish brown, pale pink and shimmery champagne. I love the color combination because it can be used everyday. And I'm happy with its smooth texture and absence of fall-out.

I have a couple of problems with this, though. First is the color pay-off... of all the mineral makeup I've tried, this is the least pigmented. In order to get some color to show, I had to apply an eyeshadow base (in the swatches below, I used the one from Art Deco). You can also try a cream eyeshadow underneath. Point is, it's almost invisible without any form of base.

Next. Even with a base, it takes a lot of work to build the color. Application involves too much effort because the makeup doesn't stick to the skin too well. 

Deal breakers. :(

I had high hopes for this product. As much as I would like to support an indie brand that produces cruelty-free natural products, I also want to make sure that what I buy is of good quality. Sad to say, this eyeshadow falls short of my expectations.

Human Nature should revisit the formula and figure out how to improve this. 

On a lighter and totally unrelated note, I've got the song "Bennie and the Jets" on repeat today. :)

September 5, 2012

Cellnique D'sensi Calming & Hydrating Cream + Immuno Rescue Essence

Cellnique sent me a few products to review and it took months for me to finally write a post because my skin was breaking out like crazy. I had to figure out what was causing it and I wanted to make sure I found the culprit. Bottomline: it wasn't anything from Cellnique... it was some cleanser I was using that turned out to be too harsh.

I've shared in the past that I have rosacea - the middle part of my face gets so red that I always have to be careful with what I put on my face. Two of the products I received are meant to help reduce redness and I was thrilled at the thought of having these!

The first one is their D'sensi Calming & Hydrating Cream which is a moisturizer that can be used day and night. Now the word "cream" is deceiving because it's more like gel. It's light and watery which my skin drinks up easily.

The first day I tried this, I did not notice the redness go away but after a few days of continuous use, there was an improvement. I saw the redness subside. Although the formula is lightweight, my skin can retain the moisture all day even when I'm stuck in an air conditioned area.

A jar contains 50g - I used this for both day and night for 3 months and it looks like I have more or less a month's worth left before it empties out. The label says it does not contain any artificial fragrance but the perfumy scent makes me think otherwise.

On to the next product!

Immuno Rescue Essence is my favorite among the items that were sent to me. This is applied before moisturizer, just like any other serum. In terms of weight, its lighter than Cellex-C Hydra B Complex and similar to Dermalogica Skin Hydrating Booster.

Each box contains 8 small bottles with 0.1 oz each. It doesn't sound like much but a little goes a long way. A drop or two is all I need and a bottle lasts approximately a month and a half before it goes empty.

I tried using D'sensi Calming & Hydrating Cream with and without this serum - there is a noticeable difference. With the serum, the redness disappears by the time I'm done with my skincare routine. I use both products everyday because I need them!

Another side experiment I did was to stop using the serum and I switched to another moisturizer for a week. The redness came back immediately. Point is, you need to continuously use these products to keep the redness at bay.

Before the company contacted me, I had never heard of the brand before but I'm glad I had the opportunity to try these out because it addressed one of my major skin concerns.

A press sample was provided for editorial consideration.