Thursday, February 9th, 2012

5 Midnight Navy Blue Eyeshadows

This type of shade is popular, and there are so many wonderful versions available!  These are five of my favorites, from high-end to budget-friendly.

  1. Le Metier de Beaute Lapis
  2. MAC Deep Truth
  3. Make Up For Ever #308
  4. NYX Kiss in Casablanca
  5. Inglot #428

What’s your favorite navy blue eyeshadow?

Wednesday, February 1st, 2012

Make Up For Ever #8K Khol Pencil
Make Up For Ever #8K Khol Pencil

Make Up For Ever #8K Khol Pencil

Make Up For Ever #8K Khol Pencil ($17.00 for 0.04 oz.) is described as a “navy blue sheen.” It’s not navy blue; it’s a blackened violet purple with blue micro-shimmer.  I couldn’t think of a dupe within the purple eyeliners that came to mind.   The color payoff was good but not as intense as other shades I’ve tried in this formula.  Though, to put things into context, this is one of the better pigmented purple eyeliners, which are notorious, as a group and across brands and price points, to have mediocre payoff.  It also has a drier texture, even compared to #4K.

It’s just slightly creamy, so it does not apply quite as easily as the two other shades I’ve reviewed.  I felt like this one needed more than one pass to really deliver opaque color.  When I trialed this particular hue, it wore for five hours on the lower water line and eight hours on the lash line on its own.  I did, also, set the lower water line with powder (as per Make Up For Ever’s recommendation for “long-lasting” results), which allowed the product to stay on for six hours on the lower water line.

The Glossover

P
product

#8K

B+
If you're looking for a waterline-approved eyeliner, you might want to consider Make Up For Ever's Khol Pencils! They deliver excellent color payoff and have a great creaminess that helps them apply easily to the lash line.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

8.5/10

Texture

8.5/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Monday, January 30th, 2012

Make Up For Ever #4 Khol Pencil
Make Up For Ever #4K Khol Pencil

Make Up For Ever #4K Khol Pencil

Make Up For Ever #4K Khol Pencil ($17.00 for 0.04 oz.) is described as a “deep green.”  It’s a rich green-teal with very subtle blue and teal micro-shimmer.  The shimmer is just barely noticeable.  It yields great color payoff in a single pass, which is always good news when it comes to an eyeliner.  It’s the closest I’ve come to finding a dupe to Prescriptives Blue Grotto. It’s a bit greener than NARS Kaliste.

This didn’t have the same level of creaminess as #1K, though it was still creamy.  It applied easily enough to both the lash line and water line, which this formula is supposed to be designed for. Perhaps because it was marginally less creamy and therefore drier (but I would not describe it as dry), this wore better on the lower water line–five hours when applied alone and six and a half hours when set with powder–while wear on the lower lash line was about the same with no smudging or budging after eight hours.

The Glossover

P
product

#4K

A
If you're looking for a waterline-approved eyeliner, you might want to consider Make Up For Ever's Khol Pencils! They deliver excellent color payoff and have a great creaminess that helps them apply easily to the lash line.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

9.5/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Saturday, January 28th, 2012

Make Up For Ever #1K Khol Pencil
Make Up For Ever #1K Khol Pencil

Make Up For Ever #1K Khol Pencil

Make Up For Ever #1K Khol Pencil ($17.00 for 0.04 oz.) is described as a “deep black.”  It’s a rich black with a creamy finish; no real sheen or shine, so it appears mostly matte once applied.  This liner from the brand is supposed to be “exceptionally smooth” and work well for both the lash line and lower water line. According to Sephora, it is a blend of vegetable lipids, vitamin E, mango seed oil, hydrogenated cottonseed oil, and jojoba oil.  When I tried to figure out just how long this was supposed to wear, Make Up For Ever actually said for long-lasting results to dust a loose powder or use their makeup seal over it.

The pencil is, however, designed to be used on the upper and lower rims, or the waterlines, which is why it has such a creamy texture.  The Khol Pencil (which is how it’s spelled on the pencil, but on their website, they write it as Kohl Pencil) glides across the lash line/water line effortlessly, because it has such a soft, creamy consistency that helps it deliver intense color in a single pass.  This is a very smudgeable eyeliner, though I didn’t find that it would run, smudge, or migrate when I wore it.

When I tested it on the waterline, it lasted for four hours or so, but it held up better on the lower lash line and made it to eight hours with most of it intact.  Despite the eyeliner disappearing on the waterline after four hours, it doesn’t migrate or wind up underneath your lash line.  I did dust on a smidgen of black eyeshadow on top of the lower waterline to see if it would improve the wear, which it did, though it extended the wear to five hour and a half hours.

The Glossover

P
product

#1K

A
If you're looking for a waterline-approved eyeliner, you might want to consider Make Up For Ever's Khol Pencils! They deliver excellent color payoff and have a great creaminess that helps them apply easily to the lash line.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

10/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

5/5

Results
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Thursday, January 26th, 2012

Make Up For Ever #10 Aqua Cream
Make Up For Ever #10 Aqua Cream

Make Up For Ever #10 Aqua Cream

Make Up For Ever #10 Aqua Cream ($22.00 for 0.21 oz.) is described as a “golden tangerine sheen.” It’s a vibrant orange with golden shimmer-sheen. It’s borderline retina-burning, honestly! It’s approved for use on the lips and cheeks (so not eyes). Whether it’s used more opaque or sheer, it’s a rich color and applies opaque. You would use the teeniest, tiniest bit to get a wash of color for blush or a lip tint. It has a more molten, deeper hue when layered (like the heavier swatch). OCC Banjee is lighter but still bright–it’s the only shade I could think of that came close to being a dupe. A lot of the other orange lipsticks I thought off are darker.  Maybelline Fierce & Tangy is much lighter.

Aqua Creams work well on the cheeks as far as wear goes, and lower shimmer shades like #10 add color easily that also sticks around for eight hours or longer. Because it has a softer finish, it doesn’t emphasize pores, so it sits well on the skin. What I really like is that these don’t remain sticky on the cheeks, which many cream blushes do. On the lips, I find this one stains a bit, and again, because the finish has less frost in it, it is not as drying as other Aqua Creams have been for me. It’s not my first choice in lip color, because it’s not hydrating and a bit drying, but it does wear for five to six hours and leaves behind a subtle tint.

The Glossover

P
product

#10

A-
Make Up For Ever Aqua Cream is a great formula, but while I love the performance for eyes, it's not quite as stellar when it comes to cheeks/lips--so if it's not eye-safe, then the overall score is a bit less. It's good on the cheeks when it has low shimmer, but on lips, it's long-wearing but somewhat drying.

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

10/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Wednesday, November 23rd, 2011


Holiday Gift Guide: Must-Have Beauty Products for Lips

One of the things I am most thankful for is that by becoming a beauty blogger and having the opportunity to try so may different products is that it’s opened up my eyes to how many fantastic brands and formulas there are. Not every brand does everything perfectly, and there are a lot of great formulas that are just varying degrees of great. Picking a favorite really comes down to a less quantifiable factor, I think. It might be the color range, packaging, scent, or the overall feel. These are all lip products I personally recommend from brands’ permanent ranges.

Lip Balms/Treatments

  • Kiehl’s #1 Lip Balm ($7.00) is nice for those who prefer a thinner balm with no shine. It’s very, very slick and thin on the lips, but it does a good job at moisturizing.
  • Jack Black Lip Therapy Lip Balm ($7.50) is my all-time favorite lip balm, and I have them all over the house–at my desk, purse, pocket, nightstand–and a stock pile of them in reserve. So, so hydrating and comfortable to wear. My favorite flavor is Lemon & Chamomile, with Original as a runner-up.
  • Philosophy Lip Shines ($10.00) are kind of a balm, kind of a lip balm; because they tend to run so sheer and have the thicker feel of a balm, I’m going to go with it as a lip balm! I like that they’re fragranced with Philosophy’s signature scents plus have some shimmer and shine.
  • Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment ($22.50) is a decadent balm that works well but wears away quickly–I like the product, not so much the price tag and how quickly it finishes, though! They do have tinted versions, though, and they’re some of the better lip stains because they’re more hydrating, but they are prone to uneven fading.
  • Sara Happ The Lip Scrub ($24.00) is my favorite lip scrub, because it holds together well, exfoliates lips, and leaves them feeling soft and moisturized.
  • Guerlain Terracotta Baume Au Couer Lip Balm ($30.00) is tinted and feels like butter on lips; it wears for a few hours before disappearing, but it’s moisturizing the entire time.
  • La Mer The Lip Balm ($45.00) is probably the priciest lip balm I’ve ever used, but it really does work well. It hydrates lips while still wearing well (you won’t have to reapply every hour).

Lipsticks

  • CoverGirl Lip Perfection ($6.99) is really rich in color, glides on easily, and wears for hours. The downside is the scent, so if you’re super sensitive to smells, you might look elsewhere, but these perform well overall.
  • Maybelline ColorSensational Lipsticks ($8.29) is a good go-to for a more affordable lipstick brand, and of course, like other drugstore brands, you can catch it on sale for much less than $8 a pop. I find the creamier shades are the best!
  • MAC Lipsticks ($14.50) straddle that price point that doesn’t quite break the bank, feels a little more high-end than some drugstore brands, and is an all-around good formula. Their range is one of the most extensive that I know of, and with that, does come some inconsistency–not every single shade is as great as the last, but they do have several favorites. Some of these include Angel, Russian Red, Girl About Town, Crosswires, Sweetie, Cosmo, Plumful, and Media–just to scratch the surface.
  • Korres Mango Butter Lipsticks ($18.00) are lightweight, comfortable to wear, and come with a fairly glossy finish and semi-sheer color. Shades like Natural Pink and Natural Purple are really easy to wear.
  • Bobbi Brown Rich Lip Colors ($23.00) are long-wearing, opaque, and comfortable to wear. For cooler skin tones, try Bare Pink, Cosmic Raspberry, and Mod Pink. For warmer skin tones, try Cosmic Raspberry, Soft Coral, and Sweet Nectar.
  • Giorgio Armani Rouge d’Armani Lipsticks ($30.00) are creamy, moisturizing, and long-wearing while delivering good color coverage in over forty different shades. Shades like #400, 402, 501, and 506 are really easy to wear on most skin tones.
  • Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Creme Lipsticks ($30.00) are rich in color and long on wear. For cooler complexions, I think shades like Ballet, Edition, and Fresco would work. For warmer complexions, try Edition, Muse, and Whisper.
  • Dior Rouge Dior Lip Colors ($32.00) is long-wearing and moisturizing with a wide range of shades. For warmer complexions, I recommend shades like Pink Songe, Andalouse, and Red Muse. For cooler complexions, I recommend Pink Caprice, Devilish Pink, and Daisy Plum.
  • Guerlain Rouge Automatique Lipsticks ($35.00) come really close to the Rouge G formula, but they are slightly less creamy, sometimes less opaque, and a smidgen less hydrating. They are really close but there is a noticeable difference on lips. I still really love the formula, though! For cooler complexions, I recommend Samsara, Cherry Blossom, and Champs Elysees. For warmer complexions, I recommend Violette de Mad, Rouge d’Enfer, and Coque d’Or.
  • Guerlain Rouge G Lipsticks ($47.00) is my all-time favorite lipstick formula, because it’s long-wearing, opaque, moisturizing, and the color range is really nuanced. For cooler complexions, I like Galia, Greta, Gabrielle, and Grenade. For warmer complexions, I like Galante, Gala, Gipsy, and Ginger.
  • Cle de Peau Beaute Extra Silky Lipstick ($52.00) feels like glossy silk on the lips; it’s super moisturizing and has a glossy shine. It wears well on me, too, despite how creamy it is. The shade range is really wearable and mostly universal, too.
  • Cle de Peau Beaute Extra Rich Lipstick ($60.00) is a decadent formula that’s rich in color, comfortable to wear, long-wearing, and has a formula that helps to plump and fill lip lines giving lips a smoother look. It’s totally over the top, but it’s an excellent formula, so you’re not just paying for brand name/packaging here.

Lipglosses

  • Revlon Super Lustrous Lipglosses ($6.99) is a budget-friendly shimmery gloss that’s mostly sheer but delivers a fair amount of sparkle and dazzle. Like other sheer formulas, the range should work across skin tones.
  • Korres Cherry Oil Lipglosses ($17.00) are hydrating and comfortable tow ear, and about half the range delivers richer color, while others are sheerer (and are described as such). My favorites are #52, #52, and #22.
  • Make Up For Ever Lab Shine Lipglosses ($18.00) is a really wide range of glosses with three different finishes. I really like how Make Up For Ever has expansive color options for most of their products, and the lipgloss range is no exception.
  • Illamasqua Intense Lipglosses ($20.00) are a total must if you or someone you know loves opaque lipglosses–these are really rich in pigment, comfortable wear, long-wearing, and have a beautiful glossy shine. I recommend virtually all of them, but a few of my favorites are Belladonna, Hermetic, and Move.
  • Bobbi Brown High Shimmer Lipglosses ($23.00) are a new favorite for me; they’re very reminiscent of Chanel Glossimers but more affordable. Sheerer color with lots of dazzling sparkle! Because they’re on the sheerer side, the shade range is fairly universal.
  • Hourglass Extreme Sheen High Shine Lipglosses ($28.00) are super slick, comfortable to wear, and moisturizing. Some shades are sheer, some are more pigmented. Shades like Siren are beautiful and opaque with a really interesting metallic finish. Fortune is a great shade for everyone because it’s sheer and peachy-pink.
  • Giorgio Armani Gloss d’Armanis ($28.00) may not be as long-wearing as the brand claims, but a gloss that wears six hours without drying lips out while delivering good color coverage is rare. I really love this formula, despite the shortfall in wear (relative to their claim). I love shades like #401, 402, 404, and 505.
  • Chanel Glossimers ($28.50) are a classic gloss for someone who loves lots of shimmer and glossiness. These took me awhile to appreciate, but they really do shine and sparkle. These days, most shades are sheer, so they should flatter the full spectrum of skin tones. I really like shades such as Aurore, Coral Love, Futile, Meteore, Spark, and Sundress.
  • Le Metier de Beaute Lip Cremes ($36.00) are extremely creamy, non-sticky, and hydrating. It was one of my first high-end glosses (and probably high-end purchases in general)–who knew that $36 would become “normal” to me one day–and I absolutely love shades like Fraise Creme, Framboise Creme, and Papaye Creme.
  • Cle de Peau Beaute Lipglosses ($48.00) wear longer than the average gloss, have a great shimmer and shine, and are moisturizing. May I recommend #2? It’s a total staple for me.

What are your favorite permanent lip products?