YOU: Private-label beauty lines

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The question has been asked recently on Temptalia and, and I just have to ask: how do you feel about private label lines?

For those of you  who haven’t heard about them before, private label beauty brands sell cosmetics to companies, groups, or individuals who want their own name on products. These companies then go on to resell the products as their own, with their own “private label” printed on the packaging. People have problems with this because (and this is just one point of view,) the company is marking up items and re-selling them without actually putting anything into the line, creatively.

[image removed upon request from the company]

Some examples of brands notorious for reselling private label items are Coastal Scents and Stars Makeup Haven, but they’re not the only ones doing it — here’s a list (via Mythbuster Beauty) of companies all selling the same “indelible gel eyeliner,” though sometimes it’s under a different name:

Spa Private Label – $7.70
Mad Minerals – $8.99
JW Cosmetics – $8.99
Headcovers unlimited – $9.99
Catwalk Cosmetics – $12.50
Aromaleigh – $14.75 (these go on sale rather often for $11.06)
Studio Direct – $14.99
Urban Apothecary – $15.00
Loose Lips NY – $20.00

A few pages from the Grafton Cosmetics price listing. Let’s keep our eyes open for those terms!

My thoughts…

Personally, I think it’s completely underhanded when a company selling private label items misleads the consumer into believing that it is their own product that they’ve “formulated with love” or “tested with care,” — but if the consumer is aware of what they’re getting, then it’s a-okay in my books.

I wouldn’t particularly care to buy from a line that was simply reselling private label items, but I think it’s actually a good idea in some scenarios: for instance, what if a beauty-oriented PR firm wanted to hand out lipglosses with their name stamped on them at an event, the way dentists’ offices give out toothbrushes? Or, if you really love the quality you get from a certain private-label brand and don’t care about having a certain name (ahem, MAC) stamped on your packaging, this can be a great way to fill your kit with cost-effective products. And (this would be so cool), what if you were part of a team of makeup artists (or just makeup enthusiasts), and you all wanted traincases with your company name stamped on them?

Anyhow, that’s just my two cents. And hey, as long as we were upfront about it — it could be pretty awesome to have a “theNotice” eyeshadow ;) (It would totally be violet, of course.)

So, what do you think? Let us know in the comments!

Private label or not, that is a ton of eyeshadows to choose from…

Full disclosure: Okay, so I had to list “theNotice” as a business to sign up to view the price listings — but it wasn’t an outright lie. It may not happen anytime soon, but I’m actually interested in the aforementioned single-product idea and would love to start testing out brands now! I know it’s crazy, so shhh, let’s keep it a secret between you and I. But, maybe someday when my meds are working and I’m in good enough shape to work as a makeup artist…

Oh, so yah; if you’re a representative of either of these companies and would like for us to take the price listings down, please just shoot us an email or a comment. (We’d really rather you do that than, um, shoot us. With a gun. Even just a pellet gun.) I personally find this kind of information fascinating and would love to share it with everyone, but I understand if your company policy disagrees with me!

YOU: Non-beauty splurges (and saves)

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

A few months ago, I bought (okay, my amazing parents bought me) a new mattress. And in short, it’s been fabulous — it’s comfortable beyond belief, and gives just enough support for my bad back. But it got me to thinking: what will you really splurge on? 

I’m obviously not old enough to say things like “houses,” but I definitely weigh out my options for different items. Shirts, for instance? No way am I spending a ton on them! But when it comes to my health, it’s pretty easy to justify spending more. Mattresses, shoes, stuff like that — they make a huge difference for my entire body, and it always pays off when you don’t have to see the physiotherapist on a weekly basis ;)

So go ahead, tell me what you’re willing to spend on and what you always save on! (And if you’re interested in doing a beauty version of this question too, do let me know in your comment. I’m kinda curious now, too!) 

Here are a few more of mine. I’m definitely more of a saver than a spender, but there’s a time and place for everything…

  • Electronics: Both. Quality over quantity, right? For instance, instead of a netbook and a desktop computer, we picked out a MacBook Pro. When it was time for a new camera, I chose a DSLR, but waited months for it to go on sale before buying it. I have an iPod Nano, but carried my original iPod around right until the day it stopped working! (It was the very first touch-wheel model, and my god was it ever hearty!)
  • Furniture: Save, save, save! I love refinishing furniture, and there’s a ton of great items to be found on sites like Craigslist and Kijiji for a fraction of their original cost. Some of it’s really worn down, of course, but there are definitely gems to be found that are practically brand-new!
  • Books: Save, definitely. I’ll buy a book if I think it’s worth reading again (gotta support those authors!) but most of the time, I just pick up my books at the library. And nowadays, I haven’t had much time to read anyways… *sigh*

Back to school: show us that school makeup!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Some of you started this week, some of you started last week, some of you will start in the weeks ahead… either way, a ton of us are going back to school this month! So, we’re inviting you to send us your school-appropriate FOTDs! (Details behind the cut.)

Here are some of our school-appropriate FOTDs (click through the images to get to the posts,) though I mean, you could really wear anything, at least as an undergrad…

And once more, in colour! (Those are from separate posts, and again, click through for said posts!)

If you’re not into that (I know it can be nerve-wracking the first time you post a FOTD online,) how ’bout you just answer this questionnaire in the comments? ;)

What’s your one must-have back-to-school beauty product?
How long does your morning routine take you?
To mascara, or not to mascara?
What one course are you most looking forward to this term?

Our answers…

What’s your one must-have back-to-school beauty product? Lancome Blush Subtil in Rose Fresque! I wear it whenever I’m too tired in the morning to pick my blush — probably two or three times a week, in a bad month :/
How long does your morning routine take you? Fifteen minutes or so, usually.
To mascara, or not to mascara? Depends on the day! Only if I feel like it.
What one course are you most looking forward to this term? Sociology. The rest of my courses are boring!

The details

If you’d like to submit a photo, please have it in by Saturday night at 12:00PM! We’d love it if you could include a short “products used” list with your FOTD (or EOTD,) and if you have your own blog, make sure to include that link as well! Just send it all to ethicnote (at) gmail (dot) com, with the subject line “Back to school FOTD.”

Here’s a checklist for your image:

  • Must be 900 pixels across, no bigger or smaller! 
  • Must be properly colour-balanced, and not blurry — if your entire face is just orange, orange, orange from the tungsten lighting, try going into the daylight to take your photo, or changing the colour settings on your camera.
  • Just include a face shot or eye shot; we don’t need to see a metre above your head and then right down to your waistline ;) It’s a FOTD, not an OOTD!

I can’t wait to see your photos, and I do hope some of you ladies send ’em in! Don’t be shy — we’ll love you either way!

Snapshots of products

Thursday, July 22, 2010

We’ve been doing a lot of intensive posting this week (a three-parter on epilating, two videos, some Rodarte drama…) so I thought I’d take a little breather. A post on no-buys was supposed to go up today, but I’m postponing it until tomorrow to give you ladies some time to go over everything else!

Here are a bunch of random product snapshots to brighten your day! (Plus, there’s a YOU prompt at the bottom.)

What do you do to pick yourself up when you’re down? Let us know in the comments!
I like to eat fresh fruit and French bread, wear deep, smokey, not-to-sweet vanillas, test out colour products, blend pigments, and take photos :) Oh — and ridiculously long walks always help, too! An hour and a half plus my favourite albums of the moment and I’m right as rain. (Right now, I’m loving Ellie Goulding, Reverie Sound Revue, and Oren Lavie.)

Filling in those cheques…. what would you write?

Thursday, July 15, 2010

I think I’m just too tired to think straight, but here’s a YOU question anyhow: if Paypal had an “other” section to fill in, what would you be tempted to write? (Or, for those of us who are still using good ‘ol paper, what would you write in the “reason” for your cheques?)

 image courtesy getty images. clearly.

Here are a few the-mae-nymph and I have come up with… 
(on a sidenote, she has the CUTEST KITTEN EVER.)

“for taking over the world”
“sorry about that accident with your pet porpoise”
“please don’t tell my wife”
“to fund your trip to exotic dancer training.”

Time to go to sleep.

TMI Time: Boobies!

Friday, April 16, 2010

I’m sorry about the title, I couldn’t help myself! There is a twelve-year-old boy in all of us. (Yes, even us girls.) We haven’t done TMI Time or YOU Fridays in ages, and while this isn’t a total revival of either, I missed doing it!

Call them what you want — boobs are boobs. (Or knockers, hooters, breasts, and if I am not mistaken, “lady lumps.” Now excuse me while I leave to pretend I didn’t type that.)

Here’s a little copy/paste questionnaire for the comments!

1. Actual size…and desired size:
3. Love them? Hate them?
4. Is one of them larger:

Here are my answers!

1. Actual size… and desired size: 34A/34B. I’m proportional, but a little more “oomph” would be nice! I’m not so desperate as to get implants, though ;)
3. Love them? Hate them? Love them. Sometimes.
Reason: They’re fine, but let’s be honest: there are times where you just wish that women did! not! have! breasts! For instance, when you’re going for a run, or attempting to lie face-down on a hard floor. (I’m not sure when you would ever be doing the latter. “Get down! My pressurized spray foundation is about to explode!”)
4. Is one of them larger: Yep. I freaked the hell out at first, but apparently this is totally normal! It’s the left one that’s a tiny bit larger — did you know that your left side of your body actually tends to be bigger? They don’t really know why, but they’re guessing it has to do with your heart and chambers and yadda yadda yadda.

That’s all for today :) Feel free to add any other questions or complaints (or raves, I guess, but don’t blame me for any awkwardness that ensues) about yours in the comments, as well as your survey answers!!

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