Monday, May 30, 2011

Make Up Bag of the Month April-May Edition

Welcome to my Make up Bag of the Month Series. It really is just a favorite's post, but I thought it would be nice to show the everyday face I have been wearing pretty consistently for the last two months, and a cute way to show my make up bag collection ^^

MUFE Face and Body: My current go to foundation for summer. This is quite thin and sheer but the coverage is buildable, and is water resistant which is excellent as the weather get's warmer. I will review this in further detail in the future, but the beautiful Tiffany posted a very in depth review found here

Maybelline Dream Matte Powder: I have been using this for a few years but only recently have I been loving it. Since mid March when my skin started to get a bit more oily due to temperature changes, this has been my savior! I carry this with a mini Eco tools Kabuki, and blotting sheets, and I'm good.
The packaging is ugly to me, too bulky, but the powder is awesome! Keeps me shine free for about 4 more hours with a light dusting, and it's hard to cake this on! A great drugstore gem.

Maybelline Mineral Power Concealer: I must be on a Maybelline kick! I have tried a lot of high end concealers but aways tend to go to drugstore, because I like chucking things into my bag without worrying about damage/cracking. I personally prefer doe foot applicators for my concealer because I like to just quickly swipe. If I have a spot I place the product first on my hand so I don't contaminate the bottle.
Pigmentation and lasting power is nice, coverage is quite good, and the ease is what I am most thankful for. The colors in the tube can be misleading ( which I hate despite the tube being clear) but I am Light 4-5 if that helps anyone, as the next shade up was too dark on me.

Lorac Luminzer: I found this gem completely forgotten so I brought it back out, and falling back in love. This looks gorgeous above peach blush for the most amazing ( not too natural, I will admit) silver/white highlight on the cheekbones. Yes it's not natural, and I do still wear it to work, because truthfully, the effect is so nice, it deserves to be seen. I apply this with a damp sponge or beauty blender

This video is extremely helpful at explaining the beauty of this product, and the reason I purchased

Milani Luminoso: This has been completely taking over my all my other blushes. I think I wore this every single day I wore make up for two months apart from a few very isolated incidents. This has become my go to blush for work, and the shade is the most flattering shimmery peach for my skin tone. It's not orange, but is more of a shimmery mid toned orange sherbert. Haha that's the best I can describe it. This so far has been my number 1 blush for 2011. To think all my high end blushes, this is my favorite so far. A complete steal for $8 dollars!
(Run and get this ladies of about NC 25 skin)
For swatches please check out my Milani Baked Blush Review, found here

Bourjois Blush in Rose D'Oro : A swap item from the lovely 25LONDON. This blush is awesome. True it's small and the brush is EHHHH, ok it's scratchy crap, but the color is great. Sweep it on the cheeks, and the color is not very apparent, but when you go into the sun or a very bright room, you will see your cheeks have a great *glow* The color is there, but the glow is phenomenal. It looks like my NARS O Illuminator in powder form on the skin. Every few "isolated incidents" was this baby right here. Love this, another drugstore gem

Rosebud Salve: I think most people have tried this, as it's quite a classic product. One of these tubs lasts quite a while. It smells of roses and is basically pink Vaseline. I have been applying this throughout the work day to keep my lips moisturized in the AC environment, then exposing myself to the now humid NY weather which can make your lips go chapped quite easily.
If I did repurchase this, I would buy the new convenient tube form over the tub, but I love the design and old school look of this product

Paul and Joe Eye Gloss 5: I have really not been into powder shadows for the last few months. I enjoy just swiping something on, and blending out with my fingers in the morning, instead of going through a brush, and blending with another brush, and crease etc no no no, not in the morning when I am already dying and wanting to go back to sleep. This is a great work color, its like a darker taupe brown with shimmer which is not too apparent . It blends beautifully with fingers for a subtle effect, and is easy to carry around because no brushes!

Physicians Formula Felt Tip Liner in Brown: After the P&J gloss I have been tight lining and lining my eyes quickly with a mini wing with this. I believe it's semi new product to the brand. It is very reminiscent to Japanese style felt tip liners ( it even states it on the box) with a very secure closure. The brown is pretty dark, and looks more natural for day. Because I have hooded eyes no matter how high end the pencil, it will ALWAYS smear. Tight line with a felt tip liner that is quick dry and avoid raccoon eyes forever!
I have been loving a lot of drugstore gems! I really recommend this liner, as I think it is of excellent quality, and the brand does try to cater to more natural and sensitive skin, so it seems safe on the eyes. It states to not put this on the waterline but I have had absolutely no issues, with or without contacts.

Does anyone else find themselves in not only a beauty products obsession, but under arms length of make up bags? I don't know how, I don't know when, but I have found myself the owner of numerous make up bags. Some free bee's (GWP) and so on, but I just think I have so many! Each month, I'll try to showcase what I have collected so far.
Another part of my beauty collection ^^

This pink cosmetic bag was a gift from my mother after her trip to Korea.

What have you guys been loving this month?

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Simple Steps for a Summer Face

Summer officially starts tomorrow!

While I do enjoy the new sunshine (we have been waiting...) and longer days, what I don't enjoy? Melting make up!

In the heat, there is nothing more gross feeling that your face literally melting off. Summer calls for lighter and sweat proof make up application.

Here is how I do it:

Summer is not meant for heavy coverage and lot's of products.
Something light and fresh is to call for!

Mix moisturizer with Fresh High Noon Tint
This will act as a primer with a glow, and adds slight tint while giving your face a subtle color

Smooth over your skin is hide minor imperfections, and your face color a natural boost

You don't need to use Fresh High Noon, just a product that is darker than your normal foundation, and can give your moisturizer a bit of a kick

Other options include Soleil Tan De Chanel and Clarins Autobronzer
(Lancome currently is giving away a nice tint, in a gift with purchase at MACY's)

Light foundation

Next, apply a sheer layer of mineral foundation with a very fluffy brush to have less of a heavy coverage

If you have get oily in the summer like me, after the mineral foundation, using the same fluffy brush, dust on lightly Bare Minerals -Mineral Veil on the T zone to diminish shine during the day
The Mineral Veil is so light, and when applied sheerly, won't appear cakey

When complete you will see a completely natural looking, and effortless base

Add bronzer to your temples, jawline, and under your cheekbones, maybe a bit on the sides of the nose for slimming effect

Current favorites are NARS Laguna, and Dior Aurora

Add some color to your cheeks

Normally I am quite fair, and some colors in my collection, I just cannot pull off during the year because they're too dark on me.

With the added tint to my skin, I can now wear bolder colors

Current favorites
NARS O - this is something I normally can never wear because it is too red on my skin, but with the added color boost, this gives my skin a great GLOW, and I can see reason behind the cult addiction
Milani Coralina -gorgeous darker pink coral, this can be hard to apply due to high pigmentation so I use a 188
NARS Turks and Caicos - I neglect this all year but it just screams summer. The color is not very bright, but it's so fast and effortless I literally just swipe it on from the stick, and blend the edges with fingers for a dewy effect

Brush color on cheeks and use leftover product on the tip of the nose to connect the colors on your face

An added option which is nice for summer is a quick sweep of highlight on the cheekbones

Add a Juicy lip color with SPF & Simple eyes

SPF is important for the lips ladies! Pick colors that not only have an SPF but a nice tint, current favorites are the Dior Lip Glow, and Fresh Sugar Rose Balm
Bit of shine, color, and protection

For eyes, I forgo powder shadows, for a quick swipe of my paint pots (most used is Bare study) Tight line with with a waterproof/smudge proof felt tip liner
( Loving, Physicians Formula in Brown, which is pigmented, easy to apply, and brown is more natural looking)
A quick coat of preferably waterproof mascara
Lastly, just groom of the brows of course!

Voila! Few simple steps to an everyday natural summer face!

Happy Memorial Day Weekend!

Friday, May 27, 2011

First Chanel Haul!

~Chanel Haul~
Don't expect myself to be writing a post with such a title again for a looooooooooong time =P
Until then, these are going to keep my Chanel lemmings at bay =)

Love the Chanel Packaging!

The Prize - Soleil Tan De Chanel

I have been lemming this for years. Unfortunately just about every Chanel counter is always, count it, ALWAYS sold out of it!

Bless my boy friend who followed me through so many counters to find it one day =)

The texture is hard to relate to in terms of make up. I heard someone say it felt like soap? They're pretty right! like smooth soap, haha. It also has a pleasant smell.
The tint is natural, and I plan on using this & my Dior bronzer this summer!
Matte perfection

Chanel Mystic Eyes Quad

As always, comes in a luxurious pouch

Yes I know, I know, another brown and pink palette???
This is my last one, I swear! =P ( for now) I just love pinks and browns! I think I can really get the most use out of palettes like these. Especially when I am investing more money into certain brands. I usually choose to purchase safe, but use able things

I was torn between this palette and Wintery Nights? Mystic Eyes won because the browns!
The grey shade is quite sheer and a bit patchy in comparison to the other shades

One snag about this quad are the applicators. I actually really like to use applicators on the go, and Chanel make really nice ones! Unfortunately the way these are particularly packaged when you open the compact, they're always slipping around and touching/dinking up the shadows =\

Last is a mascara
I actually haven't worn mascara in 2 months, and truthfully don't miss it! so of course, I go and buy a high end one! I remember reading CafeMakeup saying this is her new HG so, I couldn't resist!

Chanel's Inimitable Intense Mascara

Let me just state, this stuff smells like paint, or paint thinner, I cant decide

It claims to volumize, lengthen, and curl

I believe it does curl and lengthen, but not the biggest volumizer. The formula is a bit wet, but not as wet as Maybelline the Falsies. I think I will wear this daily, and see how it ages, some mascara's work better with age *cough* Cover Girl Lash Blast *cough*
I do like it so far.

Swatches (Left-Right)
Soleil Tan De Chanel, Mystic Eyes Quad

Monday, May 23, 2011

Gifts from Japan & an Announcement!

A Thank you, and Breather post.

First up I want to say a huge HUGE Thank You!!! to the beautiful Nic of

I semi recently sent her a few bits and bobs that she mentioned she liked when I posted on my blog. I did not expect anything back but she sent all this!
(There was more candy but ...yeah! ^^)

I actually requested 1 item from Nic, the Maquillage Eye Lash Curler. Maquillage is under the umbrella company of Shiseido. I had heard this curler was better than Shu Uemura's so I was really excited to get this!

Ive used my Shu curlers for YEARS so when I first tried this, I sucked haha I have to get used to the shape, but still excited!!

Limited Edition Koji Lashes

Suuuper excited about the Lunasol Gel Foundation. I had tried their cream foundation previously but the gel is newly designed for warmer weather and Coffret D'or sample
Also provided was a Candy Doll Gloss ( my 1st Candy Doll item!) and sleeping masks

THANK YOU NIC!!!!! please visit her site for great OOTD's and EOTD's - She is a lovely person!

Now on to my announcement
I need to I guess "publish" this to make this more official so I can't ( well, will feel more guilty) if I go back on my word.
Okay *breathe* ready : I need to go on Project 10 Pan (ugh)

There comes a time in many a beauty bloggers life, when they stop to realize and say
WHOA, I have a lot of stuff….”
The second realization is: “I only have one face”

The level of beauty products needed for this realization varies with each person, but I think I reached mine about 4 products ago…

Before I officially go insane, and open some make shift Sephora outlet out of my tiny apartment I realized, I need to pause.

(All New and UNUSED still in the box stuff!!!!) WTH! - I don't like using new things until I finish or semi finish old things

My personal beauty bomb shelter

I need to stop looking at new things which ever so slightly differs from something I already have in my collection by the smallest percentage, and use that already owned product up before buying it’s dupe with my hard earned cash $$$

So I have and officially am announcing, that I will begin P10P starting today, to realize, and appreciate what I already own, and start loving things properly again. Things I have left to the waist side, which really is a shame on my part.

My Personal Rules for P10P

    1. Finish 10 make up products – not hit pan, completely finish. To see that entire silver base, or empty tube
    2. No skin care allowed – this is something I seem to whiz through, although I purchase a lot of skin care, they don't seem to linger in my collection nearly as long as my make up
    3. I will let myself buy one MAC limited edition item until the end of P10P – only one because the brand is half limited edition in itself- but truthfully their offerings lately has been MEH to me

    4. All future "haul" posts from me should be items I already own/posses but have yet to post on, so...

Wish me luck ladies~!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Dior Summer 2011

This summer season between Chanel, Guerlain, & Dior, everyone seems to be trying to out do each other but the Dior counter is where I blew my cash =P

I happily walked away with two pieces from this collection

One of the main pieces is something many beauty bloggers have been all debating and collecting, reviewing, and swatching - my new bronzer for summer

Dior Aurora Bronzer
*Isnt is beautiful?*
The pattern is insane

Embedded in the pattern are colors blended of peach, tan, and light brown. There is shimmer in this product but it does not translate on the skin at all. Though it swatches a bit peach, when applied to my skin, it gives the most the unbelievably sun kissed color/glow. It's not a tan brown, but a gorgeous combination that does have peach in the mix, but does not come out orange on the skin. I think the peach really brightens the face, especially when in sunlight

This is not a highly pigmented bronzer, so I do have to get a bronzer brush ( which is the 1st brush I bought and NEVER used ) and can finally go a little crazy when applying this on my face. It is a bit hard to overdo, but the overall end effect is incredibly natural.

The second thing that caught my eye were the new eye shdow quints
Both color variations were gorgeous but I settled on Rosy Tan and could not be happier

Dior Rosy Tan 754

Close Up

I am pretty IN LOVE with the brown in the upper right hand corner, and the lower left corner.
So effortlessly put together, an easy and elegant eye in one palette. Though the textures of these shadow vary even within the palette with the pink being least pigmented, the two browns I pin pointed have the best formulation. Buttery soft texture.

I can see this becoming a staple!

Both come in blue velvet pouches, the bronzer comes with a mini pocket to house an included brush with very soft bristles

Highlight color ( center), top left hand corner going clockwise
How gorgeous is that 4th shade?

Now with Aurora Bronzer as the 1st shade

Have any of you been drawn to the new summer collections?

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Finished Products of April

Grrr my camera has been lost for hours, in an attempt to clean my room in search for it, I came across my finished products bag. Iphone pics are going to have to do for this one guys, sorry!
Ok, rant is over!

Finished products of April!

Lush Potion Lotion: I keep this on my desk at work, everyone walks by saying why do you have a bottle of "potion" on your desk? haha
This was my 1st Lush product ever! Since then it has been discontinued but can be found online under Lush's "retro" section. The lotion is not the most moisturizing I have ever tried but I looooove the scent. It smells like fresh carnations, Lush needs a potion perfume!
My third bottle of the stuff, ahh the smell is addicting for me. Soft and pretty.

Etude House Hand Bouquet Hand Cream: I bought this when I was in Korea, and it's the only Etude item I have tried. I hated was so greasy!!! I am sooo glad I finished this, which I had to force myself to finish to be honest
Smell is quite strong also.

Shu Uemura Skin Purfiying Cleanser: I wish Shu was still in the states =(
I bought this cleanser to be a light wash for the face after a sweaty gym session! >< sorry if that's too much information.
This cleanser foamed beautifully, smelled amazing, and had a very nice light formula. It does not seem designed for deep cleaning, but to just get the grime off your top layer of skin. If Shu still had a counter, I would get this again, but I wont be ordering something like this online. There are many cleansers that can easily be bought here.

John Frieda Frizz Ease: This tiny bottle lasted forever! When I used it I did notice less frizz in my hair. I don't really have frizzy hair in general, but I seem to have many baby hairs that defy gravity on the top of my head and just kind of stick up...this did seem to help with that problem, unsure if I would repurchase, as I am currently using Moroccan Oil which seems to be handling all my current hair needs, but I am pretty sure this will be back in my hair care routine in the near future.

Laura Mercier Foundation Primer ( sample size) : Is it just me, or do these Sephora samples last forever? After trying this I will state, that it seems better than the current NARS primer I am using ( no further details on the NARS primer as they have discontinued it)
It wasnt a huge difference of improvement, but my T zone seem to hold my foundation and concealer better/longer which is something I am looking for.
When I finished my current primer, I will definitely be considering a full size of the Laura Mercier

Estee Lauder Hydrationist (Dry Skin Formula) : This is probably the best day time moisturizer I have tried, ever. It's super moisturizing, but non greasy. Does not leave a film on the face, but does give a healthy refined glow to my skin. I do have combination/oily skin but really did not like Hydrationist in that formula, and exchanged for dry skin version. Will definitely be repurchasing once I am through my current moisturizers that I need to weed through.
My only gripe about the product is I seem to finish it quite quickly considering I only used it as a day cream and finished it in a bit over a month

Nanoce BB Cream Shade 2 : Believe this is the 1st base make up item I have finished in 2011.
Hands down, the best BB cream I have ever tried. True yellow tone, not grey, or ashy as many other BB creams seem to have. Good coverage, feels light, fixes my minor imperfections, no breakouts, and something I will be repurchasing.
The next time I buy this, I will be buying a set I have been eye-ing with a corresponding BB mineral powder! looks interesting!

Nivea Hand cream: I always keep a thick hand cream at my bed side table to use at night. To be honest this was quite thick and a bit hard to blend, especially when you are tired and just want to collapse. My hands were semi greasy after application, and I will not be repurchasing
( I do note, I use quite generous amounts of hand cream, as I really like having soft hands)

B-liv Cleanser in No Spots Bye Dots : In short, the scent was quite artificially fruity, I know it's not real fruit, but this one DEF has a fake fruit smell. It was not foamy, nor lathered well. I did not experience any problems with my skin when using this, but the whole time, it made me wish I had the Neutrogena Grapefruit cleanser instead, which in my opinion is far better, and more accessible. I was pretty under whelmed, this container was complete within a 6 week period, and the fact that I have to order this online from Singapore, is too much trouble. I will not be repurchasing.

Neutrogena Alcohol Free Toner: Whenever I don't know what toner to buy next I just buy this one. This must be my 4th? completed bottle. It's nothing special or fancy, but it get's the job done, doesn't have a bad smell, usually can be found on sale, and does not have any alcohol which I prefer in my toners. Just something that is a cheap but is a reliable fall back.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Mineral Foundation Reviews - Base Make up Part 1

To organize and review various parts of my make up collection, I am beginning a mini series dedicated to base make up.
The reviews are broken up, and are overall lengthy, because I believe if the base looks good, the rest of your face follows

Part 1 is all about the mineral foundations I have in my collections and currently rotate through, thoughts and opinions are my from my own experience and skin type.

Reference: Combination Oily Skin
Coloring: NC 25

Part 1 -Mineral Foundations

I enjoy the idea of mineral foundations. Whenever my skin is looking a bit aggravated or congested, I run to my mineral foundations because I feel they let the skin breathe ( if you find the right one) others can feel quite pore clogging

Before beginning:

Before I use each of the below reviewed foundations, I always
prime with the Laura Mercier mineral foundation primer ( mine is a mini version ) I personally do not see too much of a difference using a mineral primer vs. a normal primer. I don't think you need both, and the mineral primer has extremely small additional benefit, on my skin

1. Korres Wild Rose Mineral Foundation - Shade: Light

The newest addition to my collection. Korres is a natural brand and I would recommend if you have sensitive skin as they attempt to stay very natural.
The shade selection is unfortunately poor. They only carry four shades.
The packaging is the only mineral foundation I own with a sifter without the twist close holes option, this means this can get quite messy to travel with.
The powder is quite smooth, and is pretty finely milled
This foundation is the only foundation in my collection that for some reason ( I have no idea why)
seems to react better to mineral primers. Whenever I wear this with a normal primer ( I did try a few) it would oxidize. It would turn quite orange, and I pretty much look like I faked tanned during lunch. When using a mineral primer, this effect seems less apparent and the color stays more true throughout the day, but oxidation still does occur, just on a less severe level
It does have a nice glow, and is 100% natural. I think if you have quite sensitive skin this would be a good foundation to try, but I would also recommend buying it at Sephora and asking for a sample of mineral primer to make sure it would work for you.
Oil control power is adequate. I always get shiny by lunch time, but truth be told, I don't find myself grabbing for this often
If I forget to use the right primer, I end up having quite a bit of issues during the day. Granted I doubt my office notices myself going up a few shades during the day, but I really dont like dealing with any oxidation if I can help it.
SPF 30

2. Laura Mercier Mineral Foundation - Shade: Natural Beige

One of the more popular mineral foundations on the market.
I...WISH I liked this foundation...
The texture is amazing. The finest out of all the ones in my collection. It's so *glowy* The first time I ever experienced a powder that can glow. When you apply it to your skin and buff it in, it melds so easily. It actually feels like it goes from powder to almost a cream on your face. I have no idea how Laura got that to happen, but definite kudos!
This is for those who enjoy a dewy finish.

Now to the cons, the first thing is, I think this clogs my pores. Whenever I use this consecutively I seem to develop clogged pores at an increasing rate. There is an ingredient in here I may be allergic to, that many higher end brands use to make their powders feel very silky.
Common ingredient which causes this effect are Bismuth Oxychloride and Mica
Another con is the coloring.
On me this does not stay 1 color all day. When I apply this in the morning regardless of primer, it goes on too dark. I don't apply a heavy layer, but it apples as if I just turned into a NC 35. Crazy right??
Then in about one hour, it transforms and matches my skin exactly! Back to love. It stays that way for about 5 hours then starts to turn darker slowly. Eventually I go up an entire shade at the end of the day.

I have read many reviews, and have not heard many people state the above claims. Usually all I hear is "holy grail" so I keep trying to make this product work for me, but it just doesn't. Complete pity, because this is the best formula powder I have seen, just strange coloring and clogged pores, leads this to collect dust.
SPF 15

3. MAC Mineralized Skin Finish Natural - Shade: Medium

This is another fail for me =(

This powder is quite glowy and natural ( things I love) I have used this over just concealer as my base, or have sprayed fix + on my brush and just used this as a heavier base.
This 100% clogs my pores - I have no doubt, and quite possibly the least amount of oil control in a powder I have in my entire make up collection.
This never claims to mattify skin, but when you apply a powder and within 20 minutes the oils are seeping through, the powder is not working well
You may recall a post I had done earlier, where I tried to make this work, in the end my modified routine does work, but, it's just a little too high maintenance, and the lack of oil control makes this not something I reach for anymore.
Huge shame because I loved the glowing/natural effect

4. Lancome Ageless Minerale -Shade: Natural Beige 10

My favorite of the bunch by a long shot. Lancome base make up has never broken me out or caused any irritations. I usually run to them with foundation SOS issues, because I trust the brand.

I don't hear many people speaking about this foundation, but it's my favorite.
The powder is almost just as fine as the Laura Mercier's. It is not as glowy, but it definetly does have of a more satin finish. This does have a bit of proper natural shine.

It melds quite nicley into the skin, it is extreamly long lasting, and it just looks like I dont have any make up. (win, win, win)
This also has never oxidized on me
This does have an SPF of 21, but does not alter my pictures at all

Bare Mineral, Mineral Veil

None of the foundations listed above are are the best at controlling my oils, so in the morning I do a quick and light sweep of BM Mineral Veil on my T zone.
I have tried the Bare Minerals foundation and it made my skin itchy, but the mineral veil does not seem to have that effect. It does look pink, but goes on translucent on the face.
This definitely helps with oil control! It doesn't keep you matte all day, but you will notice a significant change with this addition as a finishing powder on the T zone. I use this anytime I wear any of the above reviewed foundations.

Swatches-Heavily swatched
L-R: Laura Mercier, Lancome, MAC, Korres

Swatches - Blended
L-R: Laura Mercier, Lancome, MAC, Korres

You can definetly notice the Laura Mercier not matching my skin in the beginning and darkening, the others blended quite well

Do you guys have mineral foundation favorites?

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