Sunday, August 22nd, 2010

MAC Explicit Lipglass
MAC Explicit Lipglass

The Sultry Season: MAC Explicit Lipglass

MAC Explicit Lipglass ($14.50 for 0.17 fl. oz.) is a sheer taupe-brown kind of lipgloss.  It’s gray, it’s taupe, it’s the grayest mauve.    I think Explicit is such an interesting shade, and it works really well layered over darker, vampier shades for some shimmer and glossiness while not reducing the boldness of the lipstick itself.  Worn alone, it darkens my natural lip color just a touch while adding a ton of taupe and light brown shimmer on lips while the base color is rather sheer.  Like all MAC lipglasses, it is one of the stickier glosses on the market and has a vanilla scent.

Is this the right brown for you? Would you wear it?

The Sultry Season is a series of posts featuring deep, rich shades of brown, berry, plum, and wine lipsticks and lipglosses — just right for autumn — that runs through October 2010.

See photos and swatches… Continue reading →

Sunday, August 22nd, 2010

MAC Viva Glam Lipglass - Gaga and Cyndi
MAC Viva Glam Cyndi Lipglass

MAC Viva Glam Lipglass — Cyndi & Gaga

Coming at you on September 2nd, MAC will launch corresponding lipglasses to February’s roll out of Viva Glam Cyndi and Gaga Lipsticks. Like the lipsticks, the lipglasses are only around for a limited time (six months) — both the lipsticks and lipglasses will be available until February 2011.

Just like the same-named lipsticks, Cyndi is a coral with very subtle white micro-shimmer, while Gaga is a light pink with blue undertones and nearly imperceptible white micro-shimmer. Surprisingly, Gaga [lipglass] seems more wearable than its lipstick counterpart–it’s not as cool or blue toned, so its more flattering across skin tones.   Cyndi feels like there’s just a little less red to it–maybe a touch more coral, more orange, but certainly feels at least a smidgen brighter.  Both glosses are incredibly opaque for a gloss, which is nice–but they can, of course, be worn sheerly by simply using less.  It doesn’t take more than two or three swipes (depending on how big your lips are!) for a nice, opaque look.

When you’re looking for a lipstick/lipglass, Viva Glam is always a good way to go!

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Saturday, August 21st, 2010

theBalm To the Rescue Lip Balm
theBalm To the Rescue Lip Balm

Lip Balm for the Love of Pugs

TheBalm theBalm to the Rescue ($16.00 for 0.25 oz.) is a large, mirrored compact full of lip balm.  It’s a vegan lip gloss, which can sometimes be difficult to find–it uses carnauba wax and candelilla wax rather than beeswax to get its waxy base.  To the Rescue also contains both shea butter and various other oils (like jojoba and castord).  It does have a very slight minty scent and tingle (but very, very subtle) from the inclusion of peppermint oil.  There are also some exfoliating crystals, but I honestly couldn’t tell you I felt any of those nor that my lips were any more or less exfoliating post-use.

It’s also a product with a cause:  all net proceeds from To the Rescue go to Pug Rescue (note the pug on the cover of the packaging!).  I’m someone who advocates donating year-round, for whatever causes that are close to your heart, and not solely through purchasing products (especially since so many only donate a percentage)–unless you need or want the product, then it’s a nice bonus to have at least some of it go towards a cause.

IngredientsSimmondsia chinensis (Jojoba) Esters, Butyrospermum parkii (Shea Butter), Simmondsia chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Ricinus communis (Castor) Seed Oil. Copernicia cerifera (Carnauba) Wax, Euphorbia cerifera (Candelilla) Wax, Cannabis sativa Seed Oil, Theobroma cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Olea europaea (Olive) Oil, Mentha piperita (Peppermint) Oil.

Overall, it’s a nice lip balm that does a good job of keeping my lips moisturized for a few hours.  It’s very thin, and if you’re not a fan of goopier, slicker or jelly-like kind of balms, this might be more up your alley.  The product size is great, though the price tag is a bit steep–I’ve found better balms at lower price points (Jack Black Intense Therapy Lip Balm), but the compact is convenient (nice, full-size mirror), and of course, the donation of net proceeds is also nice.  I look at this as a product that lets me get my beauty fix while knowing that whatever I’m paying above your average lip balm is probably going to the cause.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 9/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 3/5

RECOMMENDATION: For mild to decently chapped and cracked lips, this balm could prove to be quite the champ to give you a smooth, extra kissable pucker.

AVAILABILITY: Sephora

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Friday, August 20th, 2010


Urban Decay S&M Eyeshadow

Permanent Play:  Urban Decay S&M Shadow

Urban Decay S&M Eyeshadow ($17.00 for 0.05 oz.) is smooth, buttery shade of silvered gray with a part frost, part metallic finish. It’s nicely pigmented, and it applies incredibly evenly with little work. It’s the type of shade that works well for a very classic smoky eye. I also like to pair it with navies and bright blues for something a little unexpected.  S&M is part of Urban Decay’s permanent line-up of eyeshadows, so it’s available year-round as a single shadow.  (If you’re not much of a pot person, Urban Decay shadows are as easily depotted as MAC and will fit into MAC palettes as well.)

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 28/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

RECOMMENDATION: If you’re in need of a metallic silver-gray, S&M might be a shade for you.

AVAILABILITY: Sephora

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Thursday, August 19th, 2010

MAC Fabulous Felines - Leopard Luxe
Lipglass: A Quiet Roar, Schemer

MAC Fabulous Felines: Leopard Luxe Review, Photos, Swatches (Lips & Cheek)

Here is part two! Be sure to read part one.

Lipglass ($14.50 U.S. / $17.50 CDN)

  • A Quiet Roar is a very pale white gold on lips. It looks a little off to me when I wear it alone, but it could be used to layer over other shades. It reminded me of Almondine (Spring Colour Forecast).
  • Schemer is a sheer orange base with flecks of copper and ambered gold shimmer. I found it applied pretty unevenly, and even though I tried to make it even, I couldn’t quite get there. I’d use it as a layering gloss rather than alone. This is very, very similar to Gold Dust (Spring Colour Forecast). This one seems a little more pigmented.
  • Wildly Refined is a pinky brown with multicolored shimmer–lots of pink and peach shimmer.  It’s semi-opaque and has a very frosty/shimmery finish.

Lipstick ($14.50 U.S. / $17.50 CDN)

  • Drive Me Wild is a reddened coral with gold sheen in a cremesheen finish. Like the other cremesheen finishes in this launch, it doesn’t feel like the typical cremesheen–creamier, smoother, more moisturizing. It reminded me of an orange version of Rose Maiden (Spring Colour Forecast).
  • Out Minxed is a sheer whitish shade with lots of multicolored glitter/shimmer with slight yellow undertones in a glaze finish. It’s similar to Liquid Lurex except less glittery and multicolored.
  • Powerful is an orange-y copper shade with lots of gold and copper glitter in a dazzle finish. As far as I can tell, it’s pretty much a dead ringer for Infused with Glam. Maybe a smidgen darker, but I don’t think so.
  • The Prowl is a semi-sheer red-tinged brown with a glossy, lustre finish. It has flecks of copper and amber shimmer in it. I did find that I had to be careful about pressing my lips together, because the color would look blotchy/streaky easily.

Mineralize Blush ($21.00 U.S. / $25.00 CDN)

  • Utterly Game is a peachy orange with very subtle sheen and no real shimmer (maybe a couple flecks here and there).  It can be built up for a more intense look quite easily, so I’d actually use a light hand if you’re on the fairer side.  I saw this on an artist at the store and thought she looked lovely, and she was very pale, but I didn’t love it on me – just made me look a little burnt, ha!

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Thursday, August 19th, 2010

MAC Fabulous Felines - Leopard Luxe

MAC Fabulous Felines: Leopard Luxe Review, Photos, Swatches (Eyes)

Here’s part one of Leopard Luxe — part two coming soon! :)

Leopard Luxe Eyeshadow Quad ($36.00 U.S. / $43.00 CDN)

  • Wild By Nature is a medium-dark nude brown with a matte finish, though it seems like it has just a bit of satin to it.  Reminded me of a lighter Soft Brown.
  • Notoriety is a slightly sheer dirty brown with cool undertones and flecks of gold shimmer with a velvet finish. I really hate the pay off of Notoriety, even though it’s an interesting color. This is a repromote from Makeup Art Cosmetics.
  • Style Predator is a gold-shimmered medium orange base with a veluxe pearl finish. It reminds me of a darker version of Straw Harvest (Spring Colour Forecast) and more of a gold sheen than Off the Page (Makeup Art Cosmetics).
  • Furiously Fabulous is a deep, dark brown-gray with a veluxe pearl finish. This is the best textured eyeshadow of the three quads–it’s smooth and pigmented. I thought it was going to look like Knight Divine from an initial glance, but it’s very different. It’s like Brun and Satin Taupe had a baby.

Superslick Liquid Eye Liner ($17.50 U.S. / $21.00 CDN)

  • Pure Show is a true gold, and it seems a little less pigmented than the average Superslick liner — it’s more shimmery with a sheerer color base. It can be layered for a more intense, opaque line, though.
  • Marked for Glamour is a darkened gray that almost looks taupe when used lightly.
  • On the Hunt is a very deep, dark black.  It has a very semi-glossy look even when dried, but it’s not wet looking (but not 100% matte/flat).

Pigment ($19.50 U.S. / $23.50 CDN)

  • Lithe is a lightly shimmered peach-nude. It reminded me of Dazzleray and Jardin Aires pigments (both limited edition)–the texture is much smoother and finer than either of those pigments, and Lithe isn’t as frosty.
  • Old Gold is a green-based gold with touches of reddish brown. It flashes a green-gold overall. It’s a very interesting and complex shade; definitely worth a look if you haven’t acquired this previously. This is a permanent shade.

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →