Thursday, 27 November 2014

Illamasqua Brink Lipstick Swatches & Review

Purchased by me

Hey lovelies,

I've owned this lipstick before.
Just over three years ago, I purchased Illamasqua Brink on Trade Me, applied it once, winced and promptly passed it onto my best friend, convinced it was too orange for me to pull off. And then that entire incident vanished from my memory, until I was going through my inbox inbetween working on this review tonight and came across the payment instructions (sidenote - I need to clear out my inbox!).
Apparently I completely forgot I'd tried and disliked Brink already when I bought it in a destash a short time ago and for that I am very glad, because this time around it was total love!

Illamasqua Brink Lipstick Swatches & Review

Illamasqua Brink Lipstick Swatches & Review

Illamasqua's packaging is simple but so lovely, a rectangular tube with bevelled edges and a satisfying solidity. Not pictured is the embossed logo on the cap, which is a really cool touch.

Illamasqua Brink Lipstick Swatches & Review

Illamasqua Brink Lipstick Swatches & Review

Illamasqua Brink Lipstick Swatches & Review

Brink is a matte coral which pulls quite orange. It has fantastic colour pay off and applies smoothly, although as with most mattes, it does catch on any imperfections as you can see in this swatch. I was floored by the wear time, with Brink hanging on for seven hours (including snacks and drinks!) without looking much worse for wear. It became minimally drying after six hours. Illamasqua lipsticks have a very light vanilla scent.

Illamasqua Brink Lipstick Swatches & Review


What I liked:
  • Fantastic colour pay off
  • Super long lasting (seven hours)
  • Doesn't migrate, feather or bleed
What I didn't like:
  • Unforgiving of any dry patches or other flaws
  • Minimally drying after six hours
Where to buy:

What do you think of Brink? Are you a fan of Illamasqua lipsticks?

X
Lani

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Wednesday, 26 November 2014

ZA Cheeks Groovy 05 June Bride Swatches & Review

Provided for review

Hey lovelies,

Another treasure from ZA today! I am really enjoying delving further into their makeup line and hope you are enjoying seeing more of the brand too. I'm eyeing up some of the eyeshadow palettes next, which look to have similar complexity and colour combinations to high-end Japanese brands I've been lusting after like Suqqu and Shiseido's Maquillage line.

The closest ZA stand to me is often woefully understocked and bereft of new releases, so you can imagine my delight when I came across a gold-shimmered ivory highlighter at a ZA stand chock-full of goodies while visiting my hometown a wee while ago. Unfortunately this was one of the few things they were out of stock of, so I walked away empty handed, mournfully admiring the swatch on my hand.

The following week, I was chatting excitedly to ZA's super lovely marketing assistant, Kate, about all that I had seen and swatched, along with my upcoming wedding. The highlighter came up and Kate revealed it was called June Bride, a funny coincidence that led to her very sweetly gifting it to me as a wedding present. Thank you Kate!

ZA Cheeks Groovy 05 June Bride Swatches & Review

ZA Cheeks Groovy 05 June Bride Swatches & Review

Although it's part of the Cheeks Groovy line of blushes, June Bride is quite clearly intended as a highlighter, with a diagram on the packaging showing suggested application. I guess I am quite used to brands clearly splitting products into categories - blush, highlighter, bronzer, contouring powder - and labelling them as such (even though in many cases you can use a product however you please), so I was kind of surprised that ZA didn't call this a highlighter explicitly. No beef there though, just an observation.

ZA Cheeks Groovy 05 June Bride Swatches & Review

ZA Cheeks Groovy 05 June Bride Swatches & Review

ZA Cheeks Groovy 05 June Bride Swatches & Review

ZA Cheeks Groovy 05 June Bride Swatches & Review

Inside the compact you'll find a small brush for applying the highlighter with. I did play around with this brush and found it a bit too dense for the kind of diffused highlight I prefer and sort of... floppy? Let me explain. I'd apply highlighter to the top of my cheekbones, and the density of the brush would cause it to apply in quite a thick stripe, but when I'd try to blend it out, the bristles would flop everywhere and not really blend much at all. I had more success using the side of the brush to very lightly run the product along my cheeks and then build gradually, so it's not useless, but I much prefer to reach other brushes. 

ZA Cheeks Groovy 05 June Bride Swatches & Review

June Bride is ivory with gold shimmer, giving it a rather yellow tone overall in the pan. On skin though, it's more subtle than you'd think, providing a really buildable natural glow. The texture is very fine and smooth, blending beautifully into the skin without looking powdery at all. I was somewhat disappointed by the wear time though, as I found it had mostly faded away after five hours when I usually get seven or eight hours out of most highlighting products.
June Bride makes a wonderful brow bone and inner corner highlight, and lasted eight hours (over primer) when I wore it that way. The colour really reminds me of MAC Vanilla pigment, just with sheerer colour pay off, so if you love Vanilla but find it too intense June Bride could be just the thing you're looking for. 





What I liked:
  • Good colour pay off
  • Blends well
  • Wore well for eight hours on eyes
What I didn't like:
  • Starts fading after five hours on cheeks
Where to buy:
Have you tried any of the Cheeks Groovy line? Got a favourite highlighter? Leave me a comment and tell me about it!

X
Lani

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Monday, 24 November 2014

MAC Monday: Wonder Woman - Marquise D' Lipstick Swatches & Review

Purchased by me/Contains affiliate links

Hey lovelies,

This is one beauty I couldn't believe my luck to have stumbled across. I bought Marquise D' for a super reasonable price from a lovely lady in Greece. I think it worked out about $15NZD, which is phenomenal given that in this packaging, this lipstick can sell for upwards of  $70USD in some of the makeup sales groups I'm in. This edition originates from the very coveted and hard to find 2011 Wonder Woman collection, though it was previously released in Blonde, Brunette, Redhead (2009). Funnily enough, I saw this lipstick on counter when it launched with Wonder Woman and passed over it as 'just another nude' (How tastes change!). To an extent, yes, it is, but there's still something special about Marquise D'...

MAC Monday: Wonder Woman - Marquise D' Lipstick Swatches & Review

MAC Monday: Wonder Woman - Marquise D' Lipstick Swatches & Review

MAC Monday: Wonder Woman - Marquise D' Lipstick Swatches & Review

The packaging for this collection is incredibly cool - I somehow missed photographing the red star emblazoned on the gold section of the tube to show you, which is just criminal! I have my Wonder Woman edition tube of Russian Red back in the swatch box though, so will be sure to photograph that again properly for you guys soon.  The Wonder Woman printing has been very well done, I haven't exactly been gentle with my original tube and the only thing showing a bit of wear is the gold ring where the cap connects with the rest of the tube. 

MAC Monday: Wonder Woman - Marquise D' Lipstick Swatches & Review

MAC Monday: Wonder Woman - Marquise D' Lipstick Swatches & Review

MAC Monday: Wonder Woman - Marquise D' Lipstick Swatches & Review

Marquise D' is a sheer pink-based nude with gold shimmer, and that gold shimmer is really what elevates it past 'just another nude'. It's subtle shimmer, the kind that gives the lipstick a glow without being frosty in the slightest. The gold shimmer has no texture when applied, the smooth Lustre finish absolutely glides on. Definitely a shade you could apply without a mirror or a care in the world! Being a sheer nude, Marquise D' didn't last terribly long on my lips, making it to two and a half hours without being drying at all.

MAC Monday: Wonder Woman - Marquise D' Lipstick Swatches & Review


What I liked:
  • Sheer, even colour pay off
  • Non drying

What I didn't like:
  • Nada!

Start your hunt here:

What do you think of Marquise D'? Are you a Wonder Woman fan?

X
Lani

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Sunday, 23 November 2014

This Week's FOTDs

Purchased by me/Provided for review/Contains affiliate links/Gifted

Hey lovelies,

Another quiet week on the makeup front, I got through 56 lipstick swatches this week and spent the remainder of the week slathering my lips in balm and catching up on editing. A new parcel of goodies arrived from Mimi (Makeupwithdrawal) including my Naked 2 palette and I didn't even take photos before I got stuck into using it! So much love!
What did you get up to this week?

Wednesday






FACE
ELF Mineral Infused Primer - Tone-Adjusting Green (iHerb)
Estee Lauder Perfectionist foundation - Cool Bone (Ebay)
MAC Select Cover-Up concealer NW15 (Amazon)
ELF High Definition Undereye Setting Powder (iHerb)
ELF Cream Blush - Seductress
ELF Blush - Gotta Glow (iHerb)
Australis You Only Live Once Bronzer

EYES
Covergirl Shadowblast Beige Blaze (Amazon)
Urban Decay Naked 2 - Half Baked on inner half of lid/lower lashline, Chopper on outer half of lid, Snakebite in outer V, Foxy to blend out, Bootycall on inner corner/browbone
ZA Liquid Eyeliner BK999 Real Black*
Estee Lauder Extreme Sumptuous Mascara (Amazon)

BROWS
Anastasia Beverly HIlls Dipbrow Pomade - Soft Brown (Amazon)
Jordana Brow Gel (Ebay)

LIPS
Australis Velourlips - Grandmaster Pash

***

Saturday


Got dolled up for a friend's wedding reception! Stuffed up the false lash placement and liner on my 'good eye' so no close ups today :p

FACE
ELF Mineral Infused Primer - Tone-Adjusting Green (iHerb)
Estee Lauder Perfectionist foundation - Cool Bone (Ebay)
MAC Select Cover-Up concealer NW15 (Amazon)
NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer - Vanilla (Amazon)
Maybelline Tough As Taupe Color Tattoo (to contour) (Amazon)
MAC My Paradise blush
Too Faced Candlelight Glow (Too Faced)
MAC Studio Careblend Pressed Powder - Gold-Go-Lightly (as bronzer) (Ebay)

EYES
Covergirl Shadowblast Beige Blaze (Amazon)
Urban Decay Naked 2 - Half Baked all over lid/lower lashline, Snakebite on socketline, Busted to deepen crease, Foxy to blend out, Bootycall on inner corner/browbone
ZA Liquid Eyeliner BK999 Real Black*
Estee Lauder Extreme Sumptuous Mascara (Amazon)
Red Cherry #WSP lashes (Ebay)

BROWS
Anastasisa Beverly Hills Dipbrow Pomade - Soft Brown (Amazon)
Jordana Brow Gel (Ebay)

LIPS
MAC Nightmoth Lip Pencil (Amazon)
MAC Living Legend Lipstick (Amazon)


X
Lani

*Provided for review

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Saturday, 22 November 2014

Etude House Vivid Pop Stick #7 California Girl Swatches & Review

Purchased by me

Hey lovelies,

I really enjoy the Etude House Vivid Pop Sticks that I have and always intended to get more 'at some point' but then alas! They were discontinued! I didn't realise for quite a while, so when I finally cottoned on there was a bit of a mad fumble as I flailed around the internet trying to get my hands on the four shades that I was missing. I have located two, and cooled my jets a wee bit on the remaining two because I recently tallied up how many lipsticks I have already and the results were... frightening, to say the least. Here's the first of the two I've managed to acquire; shade #7, California Girl.

Etude House Vivid Pop Stick #7 California Girl Swatches & Review

The Vivid Pop Sticks are chubby pencil products which wind up, so there's no need to fuss about with a sharpener, always a bonus! The cap stays in place securely so you can chuck it in your handbag for touch ups on the go.

Etude House Vivid Pop Stick #7 California Girl Swatches & Review

Etude House Vivid Pop Stick #7 California Girl Swatches & Review

Etude House Vivid Pop Stick #7 California Girl Swatches & Review

Etude House Vivid Pop Stick #7 California Girl Swatches & Review

California Girl is a tangerine orange with a matte finish. It has great opacity and applies very smoothly without pulling or tugging. The Vivid Pop Sticks have no discernible scent and the formula has silicon in it, which makes it feel lightweight; sitting on your lips and smoothing them somewhat instead of clinging to them the way some mattes do.
California Girl wore for three hours without staining and it was very comfortable to wear, like I had nothing on at all. It did not dry out my lips, feather or migrate. I'm honestly at a loss as to why Etude House chose to discontinue this formula, as while not all of the shades are as top notch as California Girl, on the whole they perform very well and the beauty world always seems to be clamouring for bright matte lip colours.

Etude House Vivid Pop Stick #7 California Girl Swatches & Review

Etude House Vivid Pop Stick #7 California Girl Swatches & Review


What I liked:
  • Great colour pay off
  • Lightweight texture that doesn't cling or dry out lips
  • Doesn't feather, migrate or bleed
  • Twist up chubby pencil with no need for sharpening

What I didn't like:
  • Wore for just three hours

Where to buy:


X
Lani

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Friday, 21 November 2014

Brush Cleaning 101 with Bossy Cosmetics

Provided for review

Hey lovelies,

I have something to share with you today that I'm sure any makeup junkie will quickly be adding to their Christmas lists! Bossy Cosmetics have recently launched these fabulous brush cleaning products which can be purchased individually or as a set.

Brush Cleaning 101 with Bossy Cosmetics

Let's get prices out of the way; the Makeup Brush Shampoo is $18.95 for a 150ml bottle while the Brush Cleaning Pad is $24.95. Alternatively you can purchase them both together in a kit for $34.50 (although it's currently on sale for $25 at Bossy Cosmetics!) and Bossy Cosmetics offer free shipping on orders over $30 on their website. 

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Makeup Brush Shampoo

Brush Cleaning 101 with Bossy Cosmetics

Brush Cleaning 101 with Bossy Cosmetics

The Makeup Brush Shampoo is suitable for both natural and synthetic brushes and is designed as a 'weekly deep cleansing treatment to keep brushes in top condition, restoring brushes for beautiful application and prolonged brush life'. It's 100% made in NZ and has a lovely vanilla and coconut scent (which actually smells like the description!). I liked that I could smell the fragrance while washing my brushes, but it didn't linger on the brushes once they'd been cleaned and dried.

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Brush Cleaning Pad

Brush Cleaning 101 with Bossy Cosmetics

Brush Cleaning 101 with Bossy Cosmetics

Brush Cleaning 101 with Bossy Cosmetics

Brush Cleaning 101 with Bossy Cosmetics

Brush Cleaning 101 with Bossy Cosmetics

I honestly can't imagine brush washing without the Brush Cleaning Pad now. It has a handle on one side so that you can hold the pad as you are cleaning, or you can stick it to the bottom of a bowl of water (as is my preference). The knobbly bits on one half (how cute are those hearts and flowers?) deep clean any size of brush, while the grooves on other side act as a rinsing pad.

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Brush Cleaning 101 with Bossy Cosmetics

Bossy have given clear and helpful directions for brush washing on the back of each product, which is especially great if you are a bit of a brush noob (I know I was for quite some time!). First though, I thought I'd show you how I prefer to wash my brushes. You will need:
  • Dirty brushes and sponges
  • Makeup Brush Shampoo
  • Brush Cleaning Pad
  • A bowl of warm water
  • A glass of wine. Brush is cleaning is hard work.

Brush Cleaning 101 with Bossy Cosmetics

Place the Cleaning Pad on the bottom of the bowl of water and pump a small amount of Makeup Brush Shampoo into it. The bowl should be full enough that you can swirl your brushes around thoroughly on the Cleaning Pad without dipping the ferrule in (getting the ferrule wet can damage the glue holding your brushes together and reduce their lifespan). Now swirl a brush gently over the knobbly bits and watch alllllll the ickiness come out! 

Brush Cleaning 101 with Bossy Cosmetics

After rinsing thoroughly, reshape your brush and allow it to dry on an angle or upside down - I used a rolled up tea towel to provide an angle. You can see I got a bit of the ferrule wet as I wasn't being terribly careful while photographing, whoops! Don't let your brushes stand upright or flat while drying as water could pool in the ferrule and damage it. Protect the precious!

*

Brush Cleaning 101 with Bossy Cosmetics

Bossy instructs you to:

1. Dampen bristles with warm water. Put a small amount of Bossy Brush Shampoo onto the cleaning pad.

Brush Cleaning 101 with Bossy Cosmetics

Gently swirl the brush on the cleansing pad to create a light lather, work it through bristles. (Sorry, this photo was completely overexposed!)

2. Place brush and rinsing pad under warm running water to gently rinse. Repeat the process if needed.

3. Once clean, squeeze out excess water with a lint free cloth & reshape brush. Lay brushes on an angle to dry with bristles facing down or upside down. Do not stand brush upright whilst drying. Avoid allowing water to sit in the brush head.

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Brush Cleaning 101 with Bossy Cosmetics

Lovely clean brushes all in a row! I was really impressed at how well this duo cleaned my brushes, particularly the pink-bristled eyeliner brush you can see in the center, which I had never been able to get the last remnants of gel eyeliner out of before. It's finally pink again! Even my Real Technique sponge has been returned to its original colour and is almost stain free.
Further points for the Makeup Brush Shampoo - it doesn't dry out your hands! Brush cleansing is such a hands on activity, and some cleaners can leave me scampering for the hand cream as soon as I'm done, but this was just lovely to use. My brushes feel nice and soft, but there's no residue or lingering scent from the cleaner.
I'm completely sold on this set and the Makeup Brush Shampoo has overthrown my Daiso Puff & Sponge Cleaner from its previous perch as top brush cleaner. Have you tried anything from Bossy Cosmetics? See anything you fancy? I'm lusting after the Essentials brush set!

Where to buy:

X
Lani

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