30. 11. 2011

It has been forever and a day since I wrote up a favorites post. It’s not something I do monthly because in reality, my favorites don’t always change month to month.  Since it’s been several, I feel like I have plenty of new ones to share this time. :) Also, I totally forgot when I decided to do this post yesterday that it was the end of the month and therefore you would be seeing LOTS of monthly favorites…but hopefully you are like me and lurrrve seeing favorites posts ;)

First up, skin care:

Recent Skin Care Loves

Clarisonic Mia (Berry color)- I purchased this during the first Sephora Friends & Family sale back in…I think the end of September. LOVE this. I feel like I’m finally a “true” beauty lover owning one. It has had an incredible effect on my skin’s overall even-ness and softness. Dry patches begone! This will be a winter lifesaver. Nothing, absolutely nothing I have tried makes the skin on my face and neck softer or smoother. I am talking out of the womb softness. Clarity of my skin (i.e. blackheads) is noticeably improved. I am using the deep pore brush and it seems to be a good fit for my skin. I will have a more in depth review of this in the future. I want to use it for several months before I share my final thoughts. :)

Proactiv Revitalizing Toner*- I received this in my Cosmo VoxBox from Influenster several weeks ago. I don’t always use it daily (oops) but I use it a couple times a week and if I feel a spot coming on. It works amazingly well for preventing spots if you use it in time. Feels refreshing too.

The Body Shop Seaweed Deep Cleansing Facial Wash- I purchased this after seeing J from Lil Lady’s Life talk about how much she enjoyed the Seaweed line (her review is here). Mine is almost gone (!!!) and I have really enjoyed using it with my Clarisonic. I purchased the toner as well, but find that I like the Proactiv one better when it comes to spot treatment. I will be repurchasing this as soon as it runs out! :) Although, as a 100 point perk from Sephora when I picked up the Clarisonic I got a full size Murad cleanser, which if I was any kind of practical, I would use that up first. We will see… ;)

Start out fresh!

The Body Shop Seaweed Mattifying Cream- Thank goodness for J of Lil Lady’s Life again, because this was a total skin care win for me. Again, this tub is almost gone. It worked wonders on my combo/oily skin and it’s almost gel-like in it’s consistency. Most creams/lotions are too heavy for my skin and clog my pores or break me out. This is lightweight and smells fresh.

Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel- I found this in the bins at the checkout line in Sephora a few weeks ago. I have heard good things about this and since my Seaweed moisturizer was almost gone I thought, “Why not?” Although my intention was not to try it until my TBS one was finished, I tried it right away. It gives a similar feel/finish actually. I like it. I haven’t used it enough to say if I like it more or less than the Seaweed one…only time will tell!

Loreal Studio Secrets Magic Perfecting Base- I am pretty sure I bought this in fall 2010. I wanted to use it up because again, it’s almost gone. I surprised myself by falling in love with it again. It really helps create a nice base to apply my foundation over.

Skindinavia No More Shine Spray- I have talked about this before, but I am still loving it. My first bottle is gone, and I’m about 1/4 through this one. I will continually repurchase this. It’s refreshing and really does make a difference in the oiliness of my T-Zone. I can tell if I’ve forgotten to use it.

Aces of Bases

Chanel Perfection Lumiere Foundation Beige 30- I have really been enjoying this foundation. Those who suffer with oily skin will like this more than those with dry skin. It’s a drier foundation. It lasts so well on me throughout the day and melts into my skin so nicely. I have been applying it by spraying MAC Fix+ on my Tarte Foundation brush and buffing it into my skin. You can expect a full, in-depth review soon.

Loreal Magic Smooth Souffle- An unexpected favorite. On days when I’m not bare-faced or wearing Perfection Lumiere, I wear this. It has a very similar texture to the primer I talked about above. It makes my skin look airbrushed! I tweeted a twipic with this on half of my face, while the other half was bare (you can see that picture here)  and it really does wonders. It wears well. I actually won this in a Beautylish Twitter contest along with lots of other Loreal goodies. Yay for contests—I rarely ever win! ;)

Collection 2000 Lasting Perfection in Medium- I got this in a swap with 25FLondon and have love love LOVED it. It’s a great concealer for under the eyes or for on the face. Also, I miss her blog posts.

Nailing it

For nails I have been loving sparkly metallics. I will be doing some polish posts in the very near future with swatches, so be on the look out for that.

L-R: OPI Designer…De Better!, SOPI Keep Me on My Mistletoe, SOPI Already Famous, SOPI Chestnuts About You, OPI Warm & Fozzie

ItCosmetics Nail Love Pen*- I have been using the heck out of this. It’s a twisty pen full of nourishing goodness for your nails (technical). All the same, this is an amazing and handy item to keep by your bedside, by your desk, in your purse. I have not been suffering from the usual seasonal nail issues because of this.

Creamy and Dreamy

Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill #9 Rock Sand- Rock Sand is a peachy shimmery shade that is so wearable for everyday use. I originally liked #8 Champagne better (see my review of that here)and didn’t purchase this shade. But, I actually prefer this one at the moment. Go figure.

Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill #19 Gold/Silver Mix- I wish they had named this shade instead of just calling it gold/silver mix or whatever the websites all have it listed as. It gets the point across, true enough…but still. *moving on* I freakin’ love this shade..see the dent already forming?? Yeah. I love it that much. I will weep rivers of tears when this pot is gone….maybe I will purchase my first backup product ever, since this shade is limited edition for the holidays this year.

Bobbi Brown Long Wear Cream Shadow Black Pearl- I can’t help but think of Pirates of the Caribbean every.single. time I wear this. It’s great as a base and I have DelytefulSpeaks (who posted about this many months ago) and J of Lil Lady’s Life (who sent this to me many months ago) to thank.  It’s a gorgeous ultra-shimmery shade that reflects so many different colors. It’s beautiful!

Eye love these shades!

Ellis Faas Creamy Eyes E103*- I just reviewed this a week ago, it’s my favorite black eyeliner right now. So pigmented and creamy!

MAC Pro Longwear Eyeshadow Keep Your Cool- I bought this when the Styledriven collection came out. It’s a nice shade and it lasts all day on my eyes–not that regular MAC shadows don’t. It has a nice formula, not too dry not too creamy and it blends well. The shade is totally me.

Urban Decay 24-7 liner in Uzi- I have had this for probably about a year but scarcely used it. For some reason it’s been my go-to liner the past few weeks. It’s a nice deep grey with shimmer. It verges on black, but it’s much brighter.

Palettes from the Past

Tarina Tarantino Sparklicity Pure Palette- I purchased this around Christmas time of last year after seeing how gorgeous it looked on Michele1218. I have been reaching for it again. I did a review on this palette waaay back here and did a FOTD with it here.

Covergirl Pure Romance Quad- This was another Youtube recommendation. I believe it was MissGlamorazzi that used this in a look ages ago and I fell in love with it. I love that it’s soft and feminine.

Swatches! L-R: Urban Decay Uzi, Purple shade of CG Pure Romance Quad, MAC Keep Your Cool, Bobbi Brown Black Pearl, GA ETK #9, GA ETK #19

Lovely Lashes

LASH EM Measurable Difference Lash Gel*- Measurable difference is right! My lashes have never looked better. They feel softer, look better without mascara and I have noticeable growth! I will follow up with an in-depth review and before and after photos when I feel like I’ve tested it long enough! ;)

Benefit They’re Real Mascara- I didn’t like this mascara at first. Now, I am really enjoying it. I changed how I was applying it and now it’s an excellent mascara! It gives volume and length and is very black. It doesn’t flake but it is one tough cookie to remove. I am still trying to find the right makeup remover for this mascara…I will be testing out the Klorane one I got in my Birchbox next.

Lip Lovin'

Burberry Copper Lip Mist- When I visited the Burberry counter in October I was told this was their best-selling shade. SOLD! lol. It’s a great neutral, highly wearable and of course, the enviable Lip Mist formula and packaging.

Chanel Triomphal Extrait de Gloss- I already reviewed this shade, but I have been loving it on days when I want a bit more bolder lip. The texture is divine!

MAC Mattene Deliciously Forbidden- I got this from the Posh Paradise collection. It’s my favorite matte lipstick formula that I have tried. It’s not drying, it wears for several hours and the shade is beyond.

Revlon Colorburst Lip Butter Peach Parfait- You probably already saw my other shades of these Lip Butters here, but this is a new addition and it’s a nice wearable shade. I got the idea for this one from Youtuber Emily Noel as it looked stunning on her in one of her videos.

Swatches! L-R: Chanel Triomphal, MAC Deliciously Forbidden, Burberry Coppr, Revlon Peach Parfait

Aww, I'm Blushing!

Chanel Rose Ecrin- An unexpected favorite. I would never EVER have given this a second glance.. until I was getting foundation matched for the Perfection Lumiere and the SA put this on me so I wouldn’t have to wander the mall all pale-faced. As soon as I looked in the mirror I practically barked at her “WHAT IS THAT SHADE?!?!” Luckily, she calmly responded with “Rose Ecrin.” ‘Nuff said.

Milani Baked Blush Fantastico Mauve- On the days that I have been wanting a bit of glow or shimmer, I dust a bit of this on. I purchased it what seems like eons ago (May?) and this fall am starting to get good use of it.

NARS Deep Throat- I never thought I would like this shade based on swatching it at Sephora. Putting it on the cheeks makes ALL the difference. I can see why so many people have raved about this. So natural and glowy.

Giorgio Armani Sheer Bronzer #1- This bronzer is amazing. It’s also the first powder bronzer in years I am making a dent in. The powder is sooo soft and finely milled, possibly the finest of all my bronzers. It’s sheer so it’s easy to work with. It looks scary dark in the pan, but it’s not. It has a slight sheen to it, which I enjoy this time of year…goodbye dull cheeks, hello facelift!

Swatches! L-R: GA Sheer Bronzer #1 (built up), NARS Deep Throat, Milani Fantastico Mauve, Chanel Rose Ecrin

Random Favorites

Yankee Candle Christmas Cookie- Probably my all-time favorite candle EVER. I remember my mom burning this same scent at Christmas time and now I do the same…but actually I burn it all year round, because I’m a rebel like that. Smells like freshly baked sugar/vanilla cookies!

Benefit So Hooked on Carmella- My favorite perfume for September/October. It’s the essence of fall. According to Benefit it’s a “floral vanilla” which is a pretty accurate description. I usually don’t like vanilla-y perfumes but this has just the right balance. It has notes of Lemon, Grapefruit, Rhubarb, Cyclamen, Peony, Tiare Flower, Vanilla, Sandalwood and Amber. It’s warm and not over-powering.

Chanel Chance- Words cannot express how much I am IN LOVE with this perfume. I have like a dozen samples so while I impatiently use those up, I am dreaming of the full bottle of this. It’s fresh and Chanel calls it “decidedly young.” Which, I happen to agree with. I resisted even trying all the samples I had because I equated Chanel perfume with something my grandma would wear. It has notes of white musk, hyacinth and citron, pink pepper, jasmine, fresh vetiver, orris absolute and amber patchouli

Christmas Decorations- I have been loving getting in the spirit with Christmas music and decorating my house.

Wow, congrats if you made it this far. Quite possibly my longest post EVER. Favorites FTW!

What have you been loving lately? Favorite perfume, candle, lipstick? Do tell!

*Items marked with a ‘*’ were provided by PR for review purposes only*

It’s no secret that I have a love of blush. There is something so absolutely fun and feminine about the flush on cheeks that I can’t help but want more and more AND MORE. And just when I think I have tried every shade, something new comes a long with a slightly different twist that sends me into a frenzy. And although the Burberry blush line is not new, most of the shades are new to me, which is essentially the same thing, right?

Burberry Blushes! L-R: Russet, Rose, Blossom

Burberry blushes were first introduced to me by my dear and amazing friend DelytefulSpeaks. Russet was the shade she sent me, and it truly is an amazing blush. The texture, the finish and the shade are all perfection. It has a slight scent to it, though I cannot put my finger on what exactly it is. Nevertheless, Russet was my gateway drug into the Burberry world and there is no looking back from there.

Burberry Russet

Russet is hard to describe. It’s a mix of peach and brown and it’s quite pigmented when you put it on. This is SUCH a great match on my skintone.

Burberry Blossom

Blossom is also nicely pigmented. It’s a coral-pink and it is STUNNING.

Burberry Rose

Rose is a nice pink, not too light or too dark. It gives me a pinched cheek look that is so effortless and natural.

I was lucky enough to visit a Burberry counter a few weeks ago, and in my estimation these are the best three of the Burberry line up. There are only a few other shades (Misty-incredibly light, did not show up on me, very pale gals might enjoy; Earthy- very brown, nude blush, not good on my skin tone; Peony- very light pink; Cameo- dusty brownish rose; Tangerine- Like a lighter version of Russet, slightly brown peach, the next on my “to-get” list). As you can see, there are only 8 colors in the line, but I am certain there is a color for every skin tone. These blushes are sheer, but buildable. This past spring and summer I was all about the most pigmented blushes, the more pigmented the better. I have now come to really appreciate the more refined, softer approach to these powders…not just for the ethereal glow they put off, but for the ease of use. In the morning when I am getting ready, I don’t want to mess with a super pigmented blush because it takes more time. I embrace things that cut a few minutes out of my routine, like a soft ‘swipe and go’ blush.

Swatched L-R: Rose, Russet, Blossom

All three are amazing in terms of texture and how they feel on my skin. They have fairly good wear time at about 7-8 hours on me. I love the packaging, the design etched into the blush- the presentation makes Burberry absolutely my favorite in terms of high-end/designer lines.

I can understand the hesitation in purchasing these blushes. There aren’t that many counters available so you can’t see them in person. They also have a pretty hefty price tag at $42/each. But to me, it is totally worth it. You will be seeing FOTDs with these blushes soon (you can see me wearing Russet here).

Have you tried Burberry blushes? If not, what shade are you most looking forward to?

 

I have both seen and heard A LOT about Ellis Faas products. I was somewhat skeptical about the whole “click pen” application and never having seen them in person was uncertain of the colors and textures available. I can tell you after my first try of Ellis Faas, I will come back again and again…and again.

Ellis Faas!

For those who haven’t heard about the brand, Ellis Faas Cosmetics was created by makeup artist Ellis Faas and is centered around  what they call “Human Colors”- colors that naturally occur in our bodies and are universal to everyone. I don’t know about you, but I think that’s a fantastic approach to a makeup line! All of the products come in travel-friendly pen applicator form in long, bullet-esque tubes. The tubes are not as heavy as I thought they would be; a minor side point really.  They also have this new connector system that holds your products together so you can easily store them in your makeup bag and find them without rummaging around. Love!

Ellis Faas Winter Set

The Ellis Faas Winter Set is a trio of fantastic Ellis Faas products, perfect for newbies to the brand. The colors are super wearable and can be dressed up or dressed down. Did I mention they are holiday party perfect colors?

Ellis Faas Milky Lips L201

 

Ellis Faas Creamy Eyes E103

 

Ellis Faas Milky Eyes E209

 

L-R: E209, E103, L201

The E209 shade is like my skin but better on my eyes, and has the faintest sheen to it when the light hits. E103 is a SUPER pigmented black that can be easily blended to a light grey, or used at full intensity as a liner or base. L201 is what I would call every woman’s universal red shade. It is so easy to wear and feels dreamy on the lips.

Ellis Faas L201 on Lips

 

Ellis Faas Milky Eyes E209 and Creamy Eyes E103

 

Ellis Faas Winter Set FOTD

 

Oh Ellis Faas, how I love thee!

 

Ellis Faas!

Product Breakdown:

Face:

Eyes:

Lips:

I can safely say any doubt I had about Ellis Faas has gone right out the window. I love the smooth, creamy textures and the sleek/chic packaging. They are easy to blend and easy to apply. I already have my eye on the Ellis Faas Lights in E305 and the Creamy Eyes in E107; I’m drooling over them!

Ellis Faas products are available on Sephora.com and on EllisFaas.com

Will you be indulging in Ellis Faas this season? Or perhaps gifting someone special this holiday-perfect trio?

*The items in this post were sent for review or consideration by PR*

Once upon a time (just a few months ago) I was actually quite afraid of wearing a bold red lip. I admired them from afar, never quite taking the plunge into wearing something so striking. That has all changed…starting…NOW.

Red, by Chanel

After seeing countless holiday looks and reviews on different reds I opted for two shades from Chanel. The new Rouge Allure Extrait de Gloss in Triomphal, and the Rouge Allure Laque in Dragon (soon to be discontinued). I fell for Triomphal as soon as I put it on. A gorgeous red with a shot of pink; it’s so utterly wearable for me. I had tried Dragon on a few times at the counter before, never picking it up because I feared that I (although I loved the color) would never reach for it. Now, being spurred on by the fact that this shade has been discontinued and the endless praise this shade gets from ultra-blogger Christine from Temptalia, I decided it was time to give in. And oh, I am SO glad I did.

L-R: Triomphal, Dragon

They are different in shade and different in formula. Triomphal is a gloss (verging on a lipstick) and has a to-die-for formula and texture. Dragon is like a liquid lipstick meets a lip stain. It’s very long wearing. It has noticeable fading after 3 hours, but leaves a nice red stain on for at least 2 more after that, making it perfect for those upcoming holiday parties. Triomphal doesn’t last quite that long, but definitely has better wear time than a lot of my other glosses do. Granted, most reds end up staining my lips for longer than any other color, so keep that in mind when judging these.

Chanel Dragon Lip Swatch

 

Chanel Triomphal Lip Swatch

FOTD with Chanel Triomphal

 

FOTD with Chanel Dragon

You can see how Triomphal is so easy to wear, but Dragon just gives that va-va-voom feel.

Have you found your perfect red lipstick? Would you be able to brave wearing a shade like Dragon around town? Personally, I am loving it!

20. 11. 2011

You may or may not have heard about Essie’s newest collection of polishes being released (already available online) in stores soon. It’s called Luxeffects and features polishes meant for layering, or giving a certain effect. My first choice from this collection was Shine of the Times, for obvious reasons.

Essie Shine of the Times

It’s a flakie, and the reason why so many nail junkies are going ga-ga for this color. It’s nice to see Essie stepping up it’s game like this. The dimension here is out of this world. The formula itself is pretty thick. It’s easy to use, but it requires a little more patience. It’s worth the slightly extra effort for the effect that you get.

In order to show what this polish can do, I decided to test it over several different shades, textures and formulas.

Zoya Danielle, OPI Honk if You Love OPI, NARS Zulu

The first ones I chose were Zoya’s Danielle (for a muted opalescent effect) and two darker shades, one that is a cream and one that is a jelly.

Essie Shine of the Times

 

Essie Shine of the Times over Zoya Danielle

 

Essie Shine of the Times over NARS Zulu

 

Essie Shine of the Times over OPI Honk if You Love OPI

Shine of the Times looks pretty on it’s own, and sparkly. Zulu brings out the the gold and Honk if you Love OPI brings out the coppery-pink tones. Zoya Danielle is almost the same as wearing it alone, except that it covers your nail a bit.

Essie Midnight Cami, ELF Black, Chanel Graphite, Deborah Lippmann Believe

Of course I wanted to try it over other darker shades, a cream black (ELF Black), a dark sparkly blue like Essie Midnight Cami, over a metallic shade like Chanel Graphite and over something lighter and only slightly metallic, Deborah Lippmann Believe.

Essie Shine of the Times over Essie Midnight Cami

 

Essie Shine of the Times over ELF Black

 

Essie Shine of the Times over Chanel Graphite

 

Essie Shine of the Times over Deborah Lippmann Believe

I really liked this over Believe. Super pretty! I don’t really wear black nail polish so I doubt I will ever be wearing the ELF combo, but for those who do like black, it makes a really unique effect over it. I didn’t care for it over Midnight Cami personally, but I could see ladies sporting this. Chanel Graphite surprised me as it added a whole other dimension to it. I stopped at a Chanel counter with this combo on and the sales woman remarked at how gold Chanel Graphite looked on me. I let her in on my secret and she loved it!

Overall, Shine of the Times is a unique polish to my collection that makes just about every polish look…cooler. Are you into flakie polishes? Do any of the Luxeffect polishes appeal to you? Dish!