Saturday, December 31st, 2011

Top 10 of 2011: Lipsticks & Lipglosses

Whew — this was difficult!  I ended up having to lump some of the new-for-2011 formulas into a single pick, even though there were lots of shades I loved!   These are products I reviewed and discovered in 2011, some being part of a brand’s permanent range and others being new/limited edition shades that we saw over the past months.  I guess you could say I gravitate towards reds…

  1. Hourglass Siren Extreme Sheen Lipgloss
  2. Bobbi Brown Rich Lip Colors
  3. Guerlain Rouge Automatiques
  4. Bobbi Brown High Shimmer Lipglosses
  5. NYX Chic Red Round Lipstick
  6. NARS Damage Lipstick
  7. Guerlain Garconne Rouge G Lipstick
  8. Dior Nocturne Rouge Dior Lip Color
  9. Illamasqua Atomic Lipstick
  10. Giorgio Armani #406 Rouge d’Armani Lipstick

What was your favorite lip product this year?

Saturday, December 31st, 2011

Top 10 of 2011: Blushes & Highlighters

It’s so hard for me to pick favorites, but these are ten products that really caught my eye this year for adding color and/or glow to cheeks. Since these are products for 2011, I did exclude any spring 2012 products that may have been reviewed this year, as they’re technically for next – so these feature products new for 2011 and permanent products I discovered this year! :)

  1. Guerlain Parure de Nuit
  2. Laura Mercier Rose Rendezvous
  3. Guerlain Blush G Serie Noire
  4. Benefit Watt’s Up
  5. Tarte Exposed
  6. Guerlain Terra Inca
  7. Tarina Tarantino Feather
  8. NYX Menage a Trois
  9. NARS Oasis
  10. Chanel Beiges Ombres Tissees

What was your favorite blush/highlighter that you discovered this year?

Monday, December 26th, 2011

NYX Hot Yellow Eyeshadow
NYX Hot Yellow Eyeshadow

NYX Hot Yellow Eyeshadow

NYX Hot Yellow Eyeshadow ($5.00 for 0.09 oz.) is a pale, pastel-like yellow with a frosted sheen. It has decent color payoff, but it’s not as dense as some other NYX eyeshadows. It also felt powderier and was less true-to-pan in terms of color; it looks much lighter, which could be a result of the higher pearl/frost content. Make Up For Ever #102 is a bit more pastel and has a matte finish. MAC Gorgeous Gold is a little yellower and has more iridescence.

While the texture was undeniably soft, it had a definite powdery feel that wasn’t easy to mitigate, even knowing that NYX’s eyeshadows are softer (compared to say MAC eyeshadows, which tend to be harder–not necessarily a bad thing!), so there was some fall out.  The color payoff could have been better, too, because it had an underlying sheerness and the softness of the shade, while providing for a smooth look, made it just as easy to blend out the color so it looked almost faded.  Without a base, this shade lasts four to five hours and then begins to look noticeably faded.  With a base, I had better results, though after nine hours, it did seem a bit faded.

The Glossover

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product

Hot Yellow

C+
If you were looking for an intense yellow, you won't find it in Hot Yellow--it's much more muted and less yellow than it appears in the pan. The powderiness makes for below average wear between the fading and fall out, so it's definitely not a must-have NYX eyeshadow.

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

8/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

3.5/5

Results
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Friday, December 23rd, 2011

NYX Kiss in Casablanca Eyeshadow
NYX Kiss in Casablanca Eyeshadow

NYX Kiss in Casablanca Eyeshadow

NYX Kiss in Casablanca Eyeshadow ($5.00 for 0.09 oz.) is an ocean blue with a soft, frosted finish. What I love about this particular shade of blue is the overall soft, muted quality to it, but it hasn’t diminished the quiet vibrancy of the color at all. It’s like a mix of MAC Freshwater and MAC Deep Truth. MAC Pure Creation is a bit similar, too.

The eyeshadow has a really soft, powdery quality that can result in fall out if you aren’t aware of it (I also think you end up with more product than you need for application, because a little goes a long way). It has great color payoff and melts against skin for a really smooth result. NYX says these will wear “for many hours,” though I will say they tend to look faded after six or seven hours if used without a base. This particular shade I didn’t have any fading issues with when I used it over an eyeshadow base.

The Glossover

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product

Kiss in Casablanca

A-
All in all, this is a really nice budget-friendly blue that packs plenty of color! If you're a fan of blues, this is worth a look, because I think that slightly soft color is hard to find.

Product

9/10

Pigmentation

10/10

Texture

9.5/10

Longevity

8/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Sunday, December 11th, 2011

NYX Fortune Cookie Lipstick
NYX Fortune Cookie Lipstick

NYX Fortune Cookie Lipstick

NYX Fortune Cookie Round Lipstick ($4.00 for 0.14 oz.) is a shimmery bronzed beige. It appears much lighter and whiter on my lips–it’s a very, very frosted finish. The shade reminded me of MAC Pretty Please, which is a little pinker; MAC Tanarama, which is more golden; and MAC Bubbles, which is whiter and pinker.

This is not for someone who doesn’t LOVE their shimmer. It’s kind of like a really shimmered/frosted nude. There’s so much shimmer in this that it ends up looking almost opaque on the lips. I like it overall, and I think the effect looks nicer from afar; I’d recommend layering a gloss on top (maybe a red or plum) that’s more of a cream finish. Though it can be worn alone, it also works well as a layering product.

Because of the high level of frost, it is a bit drying compared to other shades I’ve tried within this range. It also wears away a little unevenly, but it does apply evenly from the get-go, which isn’t always true for extreme frost finishes. Mine has no detectable scent, though I know sometimes NYX’s lipsticks seem to be scented with something, but this has been waiting to be tested/reviewed for several months so it may have lost its scent over time (I find that more budget-friendly brands lose their fragrance much faster than higher-end brands). Fortune Cookie wore for about three hours.

The Glossover

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product

Fortune Cookie

B-
Not the most comfortable or best wearing lipstick from NYX's range, but you may find it a fun layering shade nonetheless. I think it would be great under creamy lipglosses!

Product

8.5/10

Pigmentation

9/10

Texture

8/10

Longevity

7/10

Application

4/5

Results
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Monday, November 28th, 2011

NYX Lime Nail Lacquer
NYX Lime Nail Lacquer

NYX Lime Nail Lacquer

NYX Lime Salon Formula Nail Polish ($4.00 for 0.52 fl. oz.) is a bright lime green with chartreuse shimmer. It’s vibrant and the right mix of shimmer and metallic, because you get some of the brush strokes of a metallic finished polish but they’re easy to control to get into straight line. China Glaze Cha Cha Cha is much greener, while Butter London Dosh is a darker green. China Glaze Electric Pineapple is similar in color but has a cream finish. Illamasqua Radium is a touch greener and while it also has shimmer, it’s much subtler and green rather than chartreuse.

Unfortunately, this shade was not opaque after two coats, which was a bummer! It’s such a pretty shade (and will be perfect for summer), but it needs some help in the pigmentation department. The consistency isn’t too thick or thin, but I didn’t love the way three coats felt–they did feel a bit heavy. When I initially tested out NYX’s new formula, this was one of the shades I specifically tested for wear, and after a week, I had no chipping, just minor tip wear (which is par for the course).

The Glossover

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product

Lime

B-
If this was just a bit more pigmented, it'd be a solid shade to check out! Even though the price point is more budget-friendly, there are numerous polish brands at similar price points (like China Glaze) that may have a better alternative available.

Product

8/10

Pigmentation

7.5/10

Texture

9/10

Longevity

9/10

Application

3.5/5

Results
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