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Round-up: Make Up For Ever Artisan Face Brushes

Make Up For Ever Artisan Brushes
Make Up For Ever Artisan Brushes

I’ve wrapped up all of the face brushes I had to review and test from Make Up For Ever’s new Artisan Brush range, so I thought a round-up was in order! 🙂 The biggest takeaways is that there is something going on with the manufacturing of the brushes that can sometimes leave behind an oily, greasy film all over the bristles, and I have yet to discover a way to get this to go away. I’ve tried harsher soaps to no avail. This residue was my biggest issue and really the major fault that I encountered–it was present in 2 of 9 face brushes.  I don’t know if this is an issue specific to particular brushes or if it occurs randomly (so any brush may be affected or just because the one I tried was, yours might not be), so I have a lot of hesitation about this brush range.

Of the brushes I tried, the one I liked the most was the #128 Precision Powder Brush, which I’ve been using even after I finished writing up the review and has a permanent home in the brushes I use regularly.  I haven’t personally incorporated any of the others into my regular brush rotation, which was more often just a result of me not using that particular shape or style often. Aside from the two that were greasy, the brushes were nice overall.  They felt well-made, didn’t shed, felt very soft against the skin, and densities were good (always in line with how they were advertised).  A few of the larger face brushes felt like the handles weren’t quite balanced with a lot of weight concentrated in the brush head and not enough in the handle itself.  I also really appreciated the breadth of the range, as there are many shapes and sizes to choose from.

Have you tried the new Make Up For Ever Artisan Brushes yet?  I would love to hear your experiences!

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Make Up For Ever #150 Precision Blush & #152 Medium Highlighter Brushes Reviews & Photos

Make Up For Ever #150 Precision Blush Brush
Make Up For Ever #150 Precision Blush Brush

Make Up For Ever #150 Precision Blush Brush ($40.00) is supposed to be used for applying powder blush and sculpting products. The brush head is 26mm in length, 30mm in width, and 16mm in thickness. It has a pinched, metal ferrule, and a total brush length of 7 inches or 18 centimeters. The brush head is slightly angled and rounded, so it would work well for contouring and sculpting the cheeks or around the jaw and hair line. It is too large to work in smaller areas like around the nose. The bristles were soft, moved together nicely without splaying, and I didn’t experience any weird greasiness/oiliness with this brush. MAC 168 ($35) is fluffier, larger (narrower but longer). Sephora Pro Angled ($32) is longer and not quite as dense. Hakuhodo J511 ($33) is smaller and fluffier.

#152 Medium Highlighter Brush ($37.00) is a medium, rounded brush with a rounded, domed edge that’s circular all around. The brush head is 30mm in length, 25mm in width, and 25mm in thickness. It has a round, open metal ferrule and a total brush length of just over 7.75 inches or 17.5 centimeters. The handle is rather thick and rounded from right under the brush head to about halfway down the handle. It’s supposed to be a denser brush that can be used to highlight the face and body. It’s actually rather large for highlighting–I would probably want something about two-thirds the size of this for highlighting. This could work well for blending out highlighters, blushes, and so forth, and based on its shape, could also be used to apply liquid foundation as it can be buffed into the skin.

Unfortunately, no matter what positives this brush had, it was a greasy, oily brush, and no amount of washing seemed to extract the oiliness from it. I thought it would work best for applying foundation, but because the bristles were already sticking together, liquid foundation just made them stick together even more, so the finish was very, very streaky and I felt like a lot of product was wasted and trapped within the bristles. Hakuhodo 210 ($36) is similar but not as dense. MAC 109 ($32) is also similar but has a tendency to flare out a bit more.

0
Product
0
Pigmentation
0
Texture
0
Longevity
0
Application
0%
Total
0
Product
0
Pigmentation
0
Texture
0
Longevity
0
Application
0%
Total

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L’Oreal Matte-r of Fact & The True Diamond Nail Lacquers

L'Oreal Matte-r of Fact Nail Lacquer
L’Oreal Matte-r of Fact Nail Lacquer

L’Oreal Matte-r of Fact Nail Lacquer ($5.99 for 0.39 fl. oz.) is a blue-teal with a matte finish. It’s a new and limited edition shade for fall, which I’ve just wrapped up testing, because testing took all of 24 hours–it chips like crazy. Matte polish, in general, does tend to chip on me far faster than regular polish (especially since regular polish almost never chips on me), but there were chips on every nail after a day. It’s opaque in two coats, and like most matte formulas, it dries down very quickly. I would recommend a ridge-filling coat prior, as you can see some ridges from my natural nails. MAC Screening Room is glossy, but it is the closest I could think of in terms of color. See comparison swatches.

L’Oreal The True Diamond Nail Lacquer ($5.99 for 0.39 fl. oz.) is a clear base with a lot of fine silvery-white shimmer and sparkle. It’s designed to be used as a top coat, and one coat has great coverage for a top coat–you’ll get plenty of shimmer across the nail. I used one coat over Matte-r of Fact, and a second would have been totally unnecessary. I used two coats of it alone on my thumb nail, just so you could see what the top coat looked like on its own. The top coat extended the wear of Matte-r of Fact by two days before there was noticeable chipping. I generally have no problems with chipping when I’ve used L’Oreal’s Colour Riche formula–it wears well and long for me (week)–and would expect this to be just fine over more normally-wearing polishes. I don’t personally have anything similar to this, so I didn’t have any dupes in mind.

5
Product
10
Pigmentation
8.5
Texture
1
Longevity
4
Application
63%
Total
9
Product
10
Pigmentation
8.5
Texture
9
Longevity
5
Application
92%
Total

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Kevyn Aucoin Fira Pure Powder Glow

Kevyn Aucoin Fira Pure Powder Glow
Kevyn Aucoin Fira Pure Powder Glow

Kevyn Aucoin Fira Pure Powder Glow ($37.00 for 0.21 oz.) is a fiery, red-orange with a satin finish. NARS Taos is more muted, shimmery. NARS Liberte is browner, more muted. NARS Exhibit A is most comparable, but it seems slightly muted when put side-by-side, and it is not as red-toned. MAC Hidden Treasure is redder, darker, more muted. See comparison swatches.

If you fall head-over-heels for intensely pigmented blushes, keep reading; and if you run in the opposite direction in fear, keep running. Fira is so richly pigmented–I see this working particularly well on deeper complexions–but it’s totally workable on even fair skin tones. You doubt me, but the texture is ultra-soft, finely-milled, and very blendable. The blendability enables the color to be diffused and softened on the skin to yield a subtle color. Of course, you’ll want to use a light hand and a feathery brush (like a fan or stippling brush) to avoid applying too much product right out of the gate, because a little goes a long, long way. The more it gets worked into the skin, the more luminous the finish becomes, but it never emphasizes pores. Fira wore well for eight hours when I wore it very softly, and when I wore it more heavily, it lasted well for almost nine hours.

P.S. — This is the last of my Kevyn Aucoin blush reviews! Hope you enjoyed 🙂

Fira
Fira
10
Product
10
Pigmentation
10
Texture
9.5
Longevity
5
Application
99%
Total

Tory Burch Eau de Parfum Fragrance Review & Photos

Tory Burch Eau de Parfum
Tory Burch Eau de Parfum

 

Tory Burch Eau de Parfum ($62.00 for 1 oz./30ml, for the bottle pictured, but it is available in various sizes) is supposed to contain the following notes: neroli, grapefruit, cassis, bergamot, peony, tuberose, jasmine sambac, vetiver, and sandalwood. The bottle totally caught my attention–the cap is gorgeous (to me) with its gold metal design and over-sized, square shape.  The opening was a loud, burst of grapefruit that then became a mix of sweetened grapefruit with florals playing in the background. Of the florals in this, tuberose seemed most prominent on my skin, as it was sweet, strong, and a little heady, and then I noticed jasmine tinkling around. I’m missing the creaminess I’d expect from the notes in this. The grapefruit and florals overwhelm the vetiver and neroli; there’s a hint of vetiver lurking about–a little earthy, green vibe I get only if I take a slow inhale with my nose to my wrist and close my eyes.  Two hours in, the vetiver is stronger, more noticeable, but it’s mostly a skin scent at this point.

My overall impression was of an incredibly sweet floral but it seem like something I’ve smelled many times before. For me, it was kind of like some of the more heavily scented moisturizers on the market with something floral-rather that lingers and can be smelled all day long–the scent ran together with all those memories.  I don’t typically reach for floral-heavy scents, though I usually find I can appreciate scents for what they are even if they are not to my personal taste, but I couldn’t get there with this one. Perhaps I was expecting something more complex, given the variety of notes, but if you like something sweet and flowery, it might be right up your alley.

Surprisingly, this fragrance started with a loud bang in its intensity; one spray and I felt like I was still tasting the scent fifteen minutes later.  A half hour into wearing this, my husband walked into my office and walked right back out not being able to take the fragrance (and I had initially applied this in a completely different room). It’s not a good sign when your husband comes in for a hello and instead asks, “What’s the smell? Oh… it’s you,” and immediately leaves.   In my notes, I wrote, “Use less,” after that, but as I continued to wear the scent, it faded very quickly.  After wearing it for an hour, I noticed just how much softer the scent had become.  It also became somewhat soapy after two hours of wear.  By the third hour, it was completely a barely-there skin scent that I was only able to smell if I held my nose against my wrist.  The scent was completely undetectable after four and a half hours.  Perfume usually wears well on me–anywhere from eight hours or greater (usually longer than eight)–and given this is an eau de parfum concentration, I was surprised at how quickly this disappeared. I wish it had started out more moderately and had greater wear.

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0
Product
0
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0
Texture
0
Longevity
0
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0%
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Origins A Perfect World SPF 25 Moisturizer Review & Photos

Origins A Perfect World SPF 25 Moisturizer
Origins A Perfect World SPF 25 Moisturizer

Origins A Perfect World SPF 25 Moisturizer ($41.00 for 1.7 oz.) is supposed to be an anti-aging, daytime moisturizer for combination and dry skin that’s oil-free with UVA/UVB protection. I bought this a couple of months ago after seeing several readers rave about it, and I’ve been trying to find a daytime moisturizer that I can settle on for awhile. The most important things to me were that it be hydrating, lightweight, quick-absorbing, and have sunscreen.

The consistency was thicker, more like a medium-weight cream with a lot of air in it. It was not quite like a whipped cream (reminded me of a body souffle), but there was a lightness to it that isn’t there with other creams I’ve seen with a thicker consistency. It spread well across the skin, and it took about ten to fifteen minutes totally absorb. The moisturizer didn’t leave the skin feeling greasy or oily afterwards or later on during the day. I found it moderately moisturizing, so it was good on most days, but if I had drier spots or any areas that had some flaking, it didn’t keep up with it. I didn’t have any issues with this if any of it gets in my eyes–no burning or irritation. Makeup wore well on top of it, and it didn’t seem to shorten the wear of anything I put on it. It had a light citrus and white tea scent (a little herbal but not strongly so).

I didn’t notice any anti-aging-related changes in my skin as far as I could tell, and for me, my signs of aging include primarily fine lines around my eyes and some smile lines around the corners of my mouth. I really liked this and would be more than happy to continue using this, but I’m not quite ready to settle down and commit. My impression of it was it’s a nice, hydrating cream that works well for daytime use, underneath makeup; it’s not an aggressive anti-aging product, so it’s not reversing the hands of time at all, but it’s helping to prevent some of it!

Ingredients

Active Ingredients: Avobenzone (3%), octisalate (5%), octocrylene (2.7%)
Inactive Ingredients: Water; citrus aurantium amara (bitter orange) flower water, anthemis nobilis (chamomile) flower water ∙ butyloctyl salicylate ∙ ethyl macadamiate ∙ methyl trimethicone jojoba esters ∙ butylene glycol ∙ lauryl peg-9 polydimethylsiloxyethyl dimethicone ∙ peg-100 stearate ∙ glyceryl stearate ∙ citrus aurantium bergamia (bergamot) fruit oil1, citrus medica limonum (lemon) peel oil1, citrus aurantium dulcis (orange) oil1, cinnamomum camphora (camphor) bark oil1, mentha viridis (spearmint) leaf oil1, magnolia acuminata flower extract, iris pallida (orris) root extract, rosa damascena (rose) extract, citral, linalool, limonene ∙ camellia sinensis (white tea) leaf extract ∙ pinus pinaster bark/bud extract ∙ arabidopsis thaliana extract ∙ ascorbyl tocopheryl maleate ∙ oryzanol ∙ ergothioneine ∙ triticum vulgare (wheat) germ extract ∙ hordeum vulgare (barley) extract ∙ cholesterol ∙ caffeine ∙ mangifera indica (mango) seed butter ∙ butyrospermum parkii (shea butter) ∙ potassium cetyl phosphate ∙ cetyl alcohol ∙ ethylhexylglycerin ∙ linoleic acid ∙ squalane ∙ sodium hyaluronate ∙ caprylyl glycol ∙ dehydroxanthan gum ∙ silica ∙ ammonium acryloyldimethyltaurate/vp copolymer ∙ citric acid ∙ sodium stearate ∙ sodium dehydroacetate ∙ phenoxyethanol ∙ mica

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