COMING UP | LUSH Emotional Brilliance, Tatcha, Japonesque, & more.

Monday, July 30, 2012

LUSH Emotional Brilliance reviews: Wise (Cream Eyeshadow), Perspective (Liquid Lipstick), and Fantasy (Liquid Eyeliner).

That’s right; another not-quite-real post. Because I’m (still) swimming in coursework, and the time that I haven’t spent studying, I’ve spent trying to fight off an unexpected midsummer flu. (And, seriously? Who gets the flu in the summer?!)

Anyhow. Once I mange to dig myself out of this summer-term black hole, this is what you can expect to see on theNotice! 

(To be totally honest, though, you’ll probably see some of these things before term ends because I have no self-control occasionally take breaks from neuropsychology to eat, sleep, shower, and blog.)

Lise Watier Summer Sunset flash reviews: oh my god, I can’t believe I still haven’t finished covering this collection. I am the worst when it comes to “out of sight, out of mind,” I swear!!

Senna Mod Muse eyeshadows: same for these. They’re gorgeous, but I have yet to post the swatch photos sitting somewhere on my MacBook!

Japonesque Safari Chic review. No elaboration needed — how cute is that brush?

Hard Candy Glamoflauge: I love this one, so expect shade comparisons (Light vs Medium) in the near future!

Tatcha skincare overview and regimen review… once I get my act together and actually try it.

And, finally, Physician’s Mineral Wear Talc-Free Pressed Powder, because SPF is definitely “in” for the summer.

Summery Summary | part two, makeup

Monday, August 29, 2011

Okay, so I’ll own up to it: it’s already the end of summer, and I’m just now getting around to sharing my favourite products of the season with you.

But despair not! Like with our skincare summary, I’ve only included permanent-line items, so you can find them all year ’round ;)

For the cheeks, I’m loving Etude House Fresh Cherry Blusher Duo (specifically, the right hand side) and Hard Candy Blush Crush in Honeymoon.The Etude House is a product that I have quite a few problems with (like that icky, synthetic cherry scent), but I love cream products, and I really love the shade – it’s the perfect coral; just enough peach and just enough pink.

And, of course, I rave about Honeymoon all the time – as a matter of fact, a lot of you mentioned as a “like” or a “love” in our recent poll! It’s a gorgeous highlighter (I wear it along the top of my cheekbone, and then “swoop” it along my orbital bone and under my brow), and gives a really easy fresh, dewy glow.

Swatched L-R: Etude House Fresh Cherry Duo, Hard Candy Honeymoon, Clinique Super Strawberry, Marcelle Rio Rose.

My lip favourites tend to stay the same throughout the year, but I do tend a bit more toward sheer, bright colours in the summer. This year, I’m all over Clinique Chubby Sticks (mine is in Super Strawberry, which is just ridiculously perfect) and Marcelle Vita-Lip Glosses (last year, I was really into Angelica; this year, I’ve found an affinity for Rio Rose).

Swatched L-R: Clinique Super Strawberry, Marcelle Rio Rose, Ellis Faas Light 303, Boots No. 7 Radiant Glow (shade II).

For my two “eye” choices, I’ll admit I cheated a little – one of them could, technically, be a base product. But whatever; a favourite’s a favourite! :P

I’m still really loving Ellis Faas Light E303, that bronzy beaut from Ellis’ Summer Set, and Boots No. 7 Radiant Glow – which I’ve had for ages, and still absolutely adore. I call it my real-life dodge brush, because when I layer it overtop either my timeBalm or Glamoflauge, it creates the perfect undereye area. It’s one of the few base products I have with silicones, but the results are sometimes worth the risk of a breakout!

Why I still have dark circles in the summer (especially when I’m neither taking classes nor working), I have no idea. We’ll blame genetics and general bad luck, yeah?

Swatched L-R, direct sunlight: Etude House Fresh Cherry Duo, Hard Candy Honeymoon, Clinique Super Strawberry, Marcelle Rio Rose, Ellis Faas 303, Boots No. 7 Radiant Glow (shade II).

P.S. Two favourites this post is missing are Clinique’s Lid Smoothies and Clarins’ Graphites quad, but it’s only because I’m easily distracted and lazy. These photos were taken at the beginning of summer, before either were launched or on my desk ;) I’m still loving them, though!

Close-up photos and swatches »

A burning beauty, in a bad way | Hard Candy Visibly Wet review

Thursday, August 4, 2011

The product: Hard Candy Visibly Wet Shockingly Glossy Lip Pencil in Jezebel

The first thing you need to know about Hard Candy’s new pencils is that they’re nothing, nothing like regular lip pencils. Rather, they’re incredibly soft (the softest stick product I’ve ever tried, no joke), intensely pigmented, and ridiculously bold (I’ve heard the finish described as “vinyl,” which I’d say is spot on.)

The second thing you need to know is that I’m not going to be able to properly review them.

The third and final thing you need to know is that I’ve finally, finally found a lip product that I’m allergic to.

unblended / blended in natural light

Obviously, an allergic reaction isn’t a good thing, but it’s certainly an interesting one! I feel as if I’ve finally completed a rite of passage into womanhood, except for the part where it’s makeuphood, and the rite is not nearly as fun as buying your first tube of lipstick.

By the time I had finished taking product swatches for this post, both my swatching wrist and my lips were feeling sort of… peppery. If you’ve ever tried a cinnamon-based lip plumper, you’ll know what I mean!

(If you haven’t, here are a few choice adjectives that might help describe the experience: burning, stinging, tingling, and painful.)

Jezebel is a dark magenta with plenty of hot pink glitter. It goes on thickly but blends out easily, and I’d definitely recommend using a lip brush to blend and/or pairing it with a lip liner – getting a sharp line is virtually impossible with the thick-but-creamy formula.

The ingredients: (no idea what causes the burning!)

Dilsopropyl dimer dilnoleate, polyglyceryl-2 dilosoterate, hydrogenated polyisobutene, polyethylene, octyldodecanol, bis-diglyceryl polyacyladipate-2, microcrystalline wax, c10-30 cholesterol/lanosterol esters, castor seed oil, candelilla wax, silica, disteardimonium hectorite, propylene-carbonate, 1, 2-hexanediol, caprylyl glycol, tocopheryl acetate. +/- pigments.

The verdict?

Honestly, I’d give these ones a passI’m not the only one who’s had problems with the, erm, burning, and there are plenty of other, non-burning products out there!

If you want to give them a go, though, and you’re lucky enough that you can wear these, you can expect a triple-threat lip pencil: glittery, opaque, and glossy. (Or a quadruple-threat; they’re cheap, too.) From the tackiness and the stain left behind, I’d guess that the wear on these is closer to that of a long-wearing lipstick than that of a gloss, and the shade range is fairly impressive.

A quick photo of the reaction and a full-face swatch »

Hard Candy Hide & Glow Cheek: product review and swatches

Monday, January 31, 2011

What it is: Hard Candy Hide & Glow Cheek duo cheek tint in Hot Date (317)

The formula: Hide & Glow Cheek features a solid gel formula, like Tarte’s cheek stains. However, I find these to be a lot (and I mean a lot) less sticky! It’s sort of like… applying a slightly tacky foundation, rather than slatering on a bit ‘o glue stick.

The formula glides on easily and blends well, allowing for a lot of time to move the product. Plus, the finish does a great job “waking up” my face – my cheeks are left looking well-hydrated but not shiny or oily, which works perfectly with my combination very dry/slightly oily skin. I do think it’s this finish that leads to the wear time – because it’s slightly moist-looking, it doesn’t last as long as a liquid stain or a powder blusher. (Like with most lipsticks, I get about four hours out of this before I start craving a touch-up; five hours before I actually need one.)

The shades: okay, so this product gets some major brownie points for the two shades. The darker end is your typical “berry cheek stain” colour, complimenting a wide variety of skintones summer through winter, but the brighter end has stolen my heart. It’s a bright, fresh coral - but unlike most coral blushers, it’s sheer enough to look perfectly natural. I’m waiting eagerly for summer to start, because while it’s awesome at brightening up my winter pallor, it’s going to look amazing in the summer.


The ingredients:

Caprylic/capric tryglyceride, trimethylopropane trisosterate, hydroxystearic acid, isostearyl isostearate, disostearyl malate, polybutene, isononyl isonanoate, ozokerite, 1,2-hezanediol, capryl gycol, castor seed oil.

May Contain: titanium dioxide, mica, iron oxides, carmine, silica

What we’d change: I’m not a huge fan of the bulky packaging – there’s only about 3cm of product in total, and yet the stick is 11cm long! I guess I understand where they were going with the tube (it does make it really easy to hold and apply), but I just hate how bulky it is. Perhaps if Hard Candy tried packaging similar to e.l.f.’s or Bobbi’s, and split the shades up?

The verdict? I do have one major problem with this blusher (which is that I’d like to reapply during the day, but can’t justify lugging the clunky packaging around to do so), but aside from that, I do quite like it. The finish is just right, and the shades are lovely! Plus, you can’t beat the

Hard Candy Glamoflauge: yes, I’m totally crazy about it.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Just as a preface to the review: Glamoflauge comes as a set, with both a pencil and a tube of concealer. The pencil was fine – regular low-end-of-the-drugstore stuff if you ask me – but the cream product really wowed me. So, this review is for the latter only!

What it is: Hard Candy Glamoflauge, in Light

What’s kind of crazy:  I’ve been in love with theBalm’s timeBalm for years (years!) and surprisingly… I think I may like this even more. On top of that (here’s the truly crazy part), it’ll only run you six dollars. $6! Seriously!!

(I warned you that it was crazy.)

[Edited to add: the whole review was pretty crazy, actually, so I just went ahead and edited that right into the title. Glamoflauge = crazy Rae. And now that we have that out of the way, onto the review.]

The formula: The one downfall of Glamoflauge is its texture, which is on the dry side for something that’s packaged in a tube. My beloved timeBalm has a lot more slip to it, making it easier to blend, and I’m concerned with how well Glamoflauge will sit with ageing skin (especially around the eyes). However, on my combination slightly oily/very dry skin, I have no issues with creasing or catching – it blends just fine and stays where it’s put, but the formula does take some getting used to. When I first started testing this out, I kept trying to use more product than I actually needed!

Indirect sunlight; click to enlarge (a lot).

L – R: NC 15, NW 15, the Balm timeBalm Lighter Than Light, Hard Candy Glamoflauge Light tube, Hard Candy Glamoflauge Light pencil, NC 20, NW25, NC30. All MAC shades are Studio Finish concealer.

The pigmentation: As you may have already guessed, the pigmentation of Glamoflauge knocked my socks right off. In one word, it is fantastic. This conceals just as well as high-coverage formulas like MUFE Full Cover and Lancome Effacernes, but it does it at a fraction of the price. Plus, it manages to do it without silicones, parabens, or fragrances — an impressive feat for any face product, if you ask me, much less a heavy-duty concealer.

(more…)

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