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Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

Survey Says

Fill in the survey below with your answers, and then share your answers with us in the comments section! :-)

  • What time do you usually apply your makeup?
  • How long do you spend (on average)?
  • What order do you apply your makeup in?
Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

Illamasqua Lover Blush

First Blush of Spring:  Illamasqua Lover Blush

Illamasqua Lover Blush ($23.00) is one of the better blush shades I’ve tried from Illamasqua since its stateside launch. Lover is an orange-apricot color with a matte finish, but it’s matte without being chalky or powdery (which can sometimes be the case with matte blushes!). The color looks smooth and natural with nice color pigmentation. It has rich color that can be layered and built up for greater intensity or used with a light hand for a subtle flush.

I still don’t love the packaging, since it feels bulkier than it needs to be. I do like that the lid is clear, so you can see the color without opening the compact or reading the label. The price point is near similar priced brands, but it is a little higher than I’d expect (or at least, you get less than I’d expect for the price tag), but if you’re like me, you’ll never finish a blush in your life so it’s not a deal-breaker.

More Illamasqua Blush reviews…

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

  • Product: 28/30
  • Value: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 3/5

Recommendation:  If you love yourself some matte blush, try swatchin’ Illamasqua next time you’re at Sephora.

Availability: Sephora

See more photos & swatches… Continue reading →

Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

Make Up For Ever Aqua Eyes in #4L

Make Up For Ever #4L Aqua Eyes Liner ($17.00) is a reddened plum with subtle red shimmer. I like Make Up For Ever’s Aqua Eyes a lot–it’s budge-proof, smudge-proof, water-resistant, and it just really hangs on all day long. There are also many shades to choose from, so you’re bound to find at least one that appeals to you!

I personally wish they were a softer pencil eyeliner, though; they’re not too hard, but I definitely prefer mine to be on the softer, creamier side. They’re about average in price–not falling in the “affordable” category, but they’re not prohibitively expensive either.  The packaging is straightforward; it looks like a pencil with a glossy black casing.

I also reviewed Aqua Eyes in several other shades (seven, to be exact) last year.

What are your must have Aqua Eyes?

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

  • Product: 29/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

Recommendation:  If you’ve been looking for a pencil eyeliner that stays put, Make Up For Ever might have your number!

AvailabilitySephora

See more photos & swatches… Continue reading →

Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

Lancome Creme Brilliance
Amande Sucree, Berry Noir, Blush Classique, Champagne, Cherrywood Luxe,
Exotic Orchid, Rose Mythique, Sienne Ultime

Lancome L’Absolu Creme de Brilliance: Review, Photos, Swatches

This Spring, Lancome released eight shades of their newest lipgloss, L’Absolu Creme de Brilliance ($29.00 each). According to Lancome, Creme de Brilliance is a cross between lip gloss and balm designed to deliver “intense hydration that helps lips stay comfortable for up to 10 hours.” It contains “shine-boosting oils” and “light-diffusing pearls” for richer color pay off; Pro-Xylane™ for increased hydration, and glycerin and hyaluronic acid to hydrate lips and help color stay put.

Like you, fancy ingredient names don’t mean anything at first. I typically don’t even read the press release or description in its entirety until after I’ve tried it. (I prefer to try things as I would normally… diving in head-first, not caring about the science behind it, and just getting down to business!) Then I go back and read the product’s description, check out tips or insight on the website, etc. to see if my experience lines up with what the product was supposed to do.

Creme de Brilliance is definitely a cross between gloss and balm. I didn’t make that bridge myself, as I was thinking maybe it was more like a glossy lip stain, but the balm part makes sense. It’s glossy and liquid enough to pass for a gloss, but it’s thin and sort of melts into lips. It doesn’t impart an ultra glossy finish (which is more a preference than a necessity). The gloss isn’t drying, but I don’t think it’s particularly moisturizing either — it just doesn’t suck moisture out of your lips while you wear it and keeps it locked in, so your lips don’t dry out, but you should make sure your lips are moisturized prior to applying for best results.

The applicator is the same as most (all? can’t remember!) as Lancome glosses – a modified doe-foot applicator (always reminds me of a heart for some reason). I felt like the scent on these is very low-key–kind of a rosy scent, but it’s not nearly as strong as other Lancome lip products. I’m not loving the price —

  • Amande Sucree is a neutral chocolate brown with bronzy shimmer. I found this one applied beautifully on lips–completely opaque and lush.
  • Berry Noir is a creamy berry red with subtle silverish shimmer (but it’s very, very subtle, as you can tell from the swatch). This one really feels and looks like a stain (in fact, I think it stained my lips for about five hours!). Not quite as opaque as Amande Sucree, it’s still mostly full color coverage. On me, the redness of it certainly stands out, but there is still enough berry to keep it from being purely red. This had a creamier look with a glossier finish.
  • Blush Classique is a brightened up medium pink with shimmer. This brightened, yellower-toned pink is a pretty spring shade that goes on nearly opaque and is one of the more shimmery shades.
  • Champagne is a cooler toned medium pink with silvery-pink and gold shimmer. Side-by-side, Blush Classique and Champagne are similar, but I think the warmth/coolness of each is apparent. Do you need both? Probably not unless you’re a pink fiend! Not too cool, so still wearable by a variety of skin tones, Champagne applies mostly opaque and has the same shimmery look as Blush Classique.
  • Cherrywood Luxe is a coppery brown with subtle gold shimmer. This was an interesting shade, just because it’s not quite brown, but it’s not really a red-brown, so I went with coppery at the end of the day. I found this one to be a little streaky in application, whereas the other seven shades applied very evenly without much work. Cherrywood Luxe has a glossy sheen and shimmer like most glosses.
  • Exotic Orchid is a plummy pink with pinky-gold shimmer. This is a creamier but still glossy shade of plummed down pink. It’s pink enough that it’s not a true plum, but there’s enough plum in it that mutes the pink tones of it and darkens it a bit. It has an almost iridescent fuchsia shimmer in it.
  • Rose Mythique is a brightened cherry red with gold shimmer. Like Exotic Orchid, this is a creamier shade with a glossy finish. It has less noticeable shimmer–just a few bits of gold shimmer. This is the shade that Kate Winslet is wearing in the Creme de Brilliance promo (though there is also a lipstick shown in the advertisement, just to be clear). It’s not a true cherry red when applied to my lips–it’s more like a cherry stain. The color does make me feel like I have “juicy” lips, ha! Funny enough, Rose Mythique may be one of the lesser pigmented shades of the eight.
  • Sienne Ultime is a more muted, darkened red (with maybe a little brown) with soft gold shimmer. This is actually much more pigmented than Rose Mythique and redder, too, though still not a true red. Like the majority of the shades, this provided nearly opaque color coverage on my lips. (You can still see my lip freckle but barely.)

Which are your favorites?

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

  • Product: 27/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

Recommendation:  If you love pigmented gloss that’s not too glossy and locks moisture in, you might like these!

Availability: Nordstrom

See more photos & swatches! Continue reading →

Tuesday, February 23rd, 2010

Temptalia Asks You


What is the “kiss of death” for you when picking out products? (e.g., you can’t stand sulfates, expensive products, wasteful packaging, etc.)

Temptalia's Answer.

I don’t like wasteful packaging, though I suppose it isn’t the kiss of death for me! Products with really ridiculous, outrageous claims always frustrate me and make me not want to buy them.

Thanks to Dolce Aria for this question!

Tuesday, February 23rd, 2010

If you were using MAC Victorian Lipstick?, what look would you create with it?

What shadows would you use? What would you use on cheeks? Anything added to the lips? Create a look using whatever you want, as long as you include today’s look book product!

Did you come up with a look you’d like to share featuring today’s product? You can link to your images, embed your images using HTML, or you can submit your images via e-mail to share them with readers to help give them inspiration on how to use the product!