The perfect sculpting brush: A Make Up For Ever 150 brush (re-)review

Monday, April 6, 2015

Make Up For Ever 150 precision blush brush contour review

The product: Make Up For Ever 150 Precision Blush Brush (Wavy)

I totally wasn’t feeling the whole blogging thing last night, so instead of the CoLab review that I was supposed to have ready for today (don’t worry; that’s still coming up this week), I have a really short re-review for you guys.

The Make Up For Ever Precision Blush Brush last seen here has been in my right hand pretty much every day for the past two weeks, and it’s been there for one reason only: this season is going insane over the contouring products.

MUFE 150 cheek brush review

MUFE 150 wavy angled contour brush review

So, girls and boys, take note. If you’re going to be contouring with cremes (especially stick-cremes), there’s nothing better to blend them in with than the MUFE 150. This thing works in product like a dream, and it’s pretty tiny, so you can get really good control with it, too.

The 150 has been great with everything I’ve tried it on so far, but it’s been the very, very best with the Clinique Chubby Contouring Sticks ($21 USD; totally not their real name). They’re worth buying together, if you’ve been on the fence about either one!

Availability: ($40 USD/$46 CAD) at Sephora.

Rodial Eye Sculpt, Smokey Eye Pen, Glamolash XXL review, swatches, photos | The sculpting story continues

Monday, March 30, 2015

Rodial cosmetics review makeup look

So last Thursday, I talked a little bit about Rodial, and I was basically like, “ooh, pretties, you must now look at them.”

Today, I’m still talking about Rodial, but these are the eye products — a.k.a. ones that come at a price point that you can totally justify. Let’s start right in with the one product that you NEED from this line (& may your lemming for it carry you through the week!)

Availability: Exclusive to Murale (in Canada).

Rodial Eye Sculpt eyeshadow mousse review

Buy this thing!!! » Rodial Eye Sculpt ($34 CAD)

On the whole, brown eyeshadows are not a big deal. This one, however? Totally is.

The Rodial Eye Sculpt (which only comes in one, ashy red-brown shade) is an “eyeshadow” that’s actually just sculpting mousse in disguise. Lightweight and whipped, it’s meant to do more than just sculpt your socket line — Rodial intends for it to sculpt the eye, brow, and face.

I’m too yellow/olive to use this through my brows, but this is ALL I used to sculpt my face for this post — and it’s totally all you would ever need. It lasts for ages, blends like a dream, and the tone is spot-on for an Instagram-worthy contour. 

(Plus, the heavy glass and matte black packaging is totally killer.)

 

Rodial Eye Sculpt review swatches photos

 

Rodial swatches eye sculpt, smokey eye pen, glamolash

Rodial swatches: Glamolash XXL, Smokey Eye Pen in Brown (heavily/blended), Eye Sculpt (heavily/blended)

Use it with this » Rodial Eye Smudge Brush ($28 CAD)

Rodial Eye Sculpt Brush review

With a small, fluffy brush (I used the line’s appropriately-named The Eye Sculpt Brush) and some quick blending, the Rodial Eye Sculpt mousse can totally narrow your nose, darken your lids, and turn your cheekbones into razor blades. It’s pretty impressive.

And, at $28, the brush totally fits within a budget. It’s just as soft and bouncy as the other brushes in the Rodial line up, and manages cheekbones just as well as noses.

Rodial smokey eye sculpted makeup look

Pair it with this » Glamolash XXL Mascara ($29 CAD)

Rodial Glammolash XXL mascara review

Keep reading; it’s not over yet!! »

Kiss InstaWave Automatic Curler review, before & after, and photos | Hair curling for dummies (with no risk of being eaten)

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Kiss Instawave Automatic Curler review

The product: Kiss InstaWave automatic curler

To all of you out there who are bad at curling your hair: you’ve heard of automatic curlers, right? The Conair Curl Secret (which I reviewed here for the Best Buy VIVA Blog) and the BaByliss Miracurl?

Well, this is like the lovechild of the creepy turtle-curler and the clamp-less curling wand, and it is beautiful.

Kiss Instawave review

How it works: The KISS InstaWave (yes, KISS like the nail brand) is the only product that I know of that functions quite like this, and it works by using a rotating base to feed your hair around a wand instead of using hidden mechanics to suck your hair into a Terror Shell™ of tangles.

Like the $200 BaByliss Miracurl, it can curl in either direction (the Curl Dial switch is also the “on” button, and will rotate the base when you press it), and you can switch directions without having to reload your hair onto the wand — you just grab some hair, put it by the base of the InstaWave, and let the iron do its thing.

Kiss InstaWave how to

Kiss InstaWave Automatic Curler how to use

What’s really awesome about the InstaWave, though, is that its totally terror-free — and I tried my hardest to make it mess up. Because it curls everything around a curling wand instead of wrapping it up inside of a Cave of Doom, hairs going in the wrong direction will just get mussed up, instead of devoured and solidly knotted, and you can start your curl anywhere with zero risk of fish hooking.

It also shuts itself automatically after 90 minutes (you know, because house fires are scary) and has two heat settings, the highest being 420˚F. I use the lowest setting, and my hair takes 5-10 seconds per section to curl and the curl lasts all day.

Kiss Instawave review before after

The problem with the InstaWave: Okay, so here’s the deal. This baby is pretty much perfect, save for being a little heavy, but… it makes an audible, high-pitched squeal when plugged in. And the squealing only gets louder when you turn it on.*

So, you’re going to have to store this thing unplugged, and if you have auditory sensitivities (I do), it’s a bad choice for you right now. However, I’ve been assured that KISS Products is addressing this issue currently, so hopefully the InstaWaves will be properly silent by the end of the year!

Kiss InstaWave Automatic Curler

The verdict?

If you want to try out an automatic curler, KISS is pretty much the only brand you should be looking at. The InstaWave is very affordable (other automatic curlers run at $130-$250), relatively lightweight, and both more versatile and easier to use than the shell-type models. 

However–and this is a big however–the cheap price tag comes at a cost. You’ll need to unplug your InstaWave after every use, and the squealing noise (similar to the noise a cheap battery charger will make) is unavoidable, at least for now. I liked this curler a lot more than the Conair Curl Secret, but if you can wait for the second run (which should be quieter), do!

Availability: $69.96 CAD/$74.39 USD at Walmart (CA) and Target (US), in stores and online.

Keep reading! »

Sephora Bulls Eye Lash Applicator review, photos | Finally, innovation!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Sephora Bulls Eye Lash Applicator review

The product: Sephora Collection Bulls Eye Lash applicator

Today I have a cool little tool to share with you — Sephora’s Bulls Eye Lash Applicator. I’ve had it for ages but have only just gotten around to trying it this month (I very rarely wear false lashes!), but I’m kind of bummed that it took me this long to give it a go…

Because it’s a little bit awesome.

How to apply false lashes trick

The lash applicator is pretty simple: it has a set of soft, silicone-covered grips on one end to grab and place your lashes without pinching them into a new shape, and a flexible point-tip at the other end to allow you to easily re-glue a lash that’s beginning to come off at the corner.

The instruction manual that comes with the applicator (“tweezers”) has directions on how to use the clamps to set and remove your false lashes, as well as how to use the tip (“spatula”) to apply glue. And it promises something that I think hits the nail right on the head: not that these will help you apply lashes more safely or precisely than normal tweezers, but that you’ll feel safer using them.

False Lash glue applicator review

And you know what? I do feel a lot safer with these near my eyeball than my super-sharp Tweezermans. I think it’s easier for me to use traditional tweezers to apply my false lashes, but these hit the great middle ground of “easier than fingers” and “less permanently scarring than tweezers” — which makes them a hit in my books.

False lash applicator review

The verdict?

If you’re new to false lashes, or you’re just scared of stabbing yourself with your tweezers and ending up as That Girl with the Eyepatch, then this is an awesome tool to have on hand — honestly, I don’t know why no one thought of it before now!

Availability: $12 USD/$14 CAD at Sephora.

Keep reading! »

Make Up For Ever 150 Precision Blush, 174 Concealer, 304 Lip Brush reviews, photos

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Make-Up-For-Ever-Brush-review-Artisan-Collection

The products: Make Up For Ever Artisan Brush Collection – 150 Precision Blush Brush (Wavy), 174 Concealer Brush – Small (Straight), 304 Lip Brush with Cap (Straight)

I’ve been testing Make Up For Ever’s Artisan brushes for the better part of a year, now, but it was just a few weeks ago that I finally fell in love with one of them. I’m fond of the collection on the whole, from the gorgeous design to the fact that all of the brushes are synthetic, but it just — I don’t know. It took me a little while.

Dany Sanz and the MUFE team worked on these brushes for five years, and the finished product is a line of 76 brushes with beech wood handles and straight (for heavier, more precise application) or wavy (lighter, more splayed) bristles. Each brush features a beveled end to help with applying false lashes or retrieving product on set, and the range is broken up into four categories: complexion (100s), eyes (200s), lips (300s), and artistry brushes (400s).

MUFE-brush-review-150-304-174

Make Up For Ever “Artisan” Brushes (detail)

150 Precision Blush Brush ($40 USD/$46 CAD)

I thoroughly believe in starting with your best foot forward (or, at least, I do this week), so here’s the brush that I’m loving right now: the wavy-bristled Precision Blush Brush. Its angled bristles are smooth but firm, and don’t feature the “oily” feeling that some of the Artistry brushes are said to — instead, it’s just kind of narrow and fluffy. 

Make-Up-For-Ever-150-precision-blush-brush-review

Make Up For Ever 150 Precision Blush Brush

Make Up For Ever recommends this brush for loose or pressed powders including blush, contour, and highlighters, but I actually think it excels at applying and blending cream blushes and stains — a tip I got from my sister. I find it to be a little too stiff for everyday powder contour or blush, but does a beautiful job of really working cream products into the skin. (It would also be a wonderful brush to work with for that severe, “Kardashian/Instagram” sculpting!)

MUFE-150-cheek-brush-reviewMUFE 150 Precision Blush Brush

174 Small Concealer Brush ($21 USD/$24 CAD)

The straight-bristled Small Concealer Brush is pretty standard, as far as concealer brushes go, but it serves its basic function well. This one is great for applying and blending concealer on a large blemish or around the nose, but I don’t find that I reach for brushes like this anymore — I prefer sheer, all-over coverage paired with precision spot concealing, so this style of brush just too wide for me.

That said, if you’re looking for a brush of this size to work with cream or liquid concealer, you could do far worse than the 174. It’s well-priced and easy on the eyes, and the bristles have just enough give to deposit product without irritating a blemish.

Make-Up-For-Ever-174-small-concealer-brush-review

MUFE-174-brush-review

Make Up For Ever 174 Small Concealer Brush

304 Lip Brush ($25 USD/$29 CAD)

The last brush I have to share with you today is the 304, a collapsable lip brush. Now, I don’t usually use a lip brush when applying lipstick or gloss, but I love brushes like this all the same — they’re perfect for applying concealer on the go. 

Make-Up-For-Ever-304-lip-brush-reviewMUFE-304-straight-lip-brush-reviewMake Up For Ever 304 Lip Brush (cap used as handle)

You know those days when you have a really bad blemish, but you’re going to be out from 9 ’til 9, too? Brushes like this one are the perfect thing to throw into your handbag, because they have a small enough tip to cover your blemish just right, and the brush handle will then pop off to cover the tip of your brush. Super clean, super compact, and awesome especially if you’re working with a creamy concealer.

The Make Up For Ever Artisan brushes are my favourite brush range, aesthetically, at the moment — what’s yours?

Keep reading! »

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