Friday, 26 September 2014

Third Quarter Favourites (Combos)

Word to mother, I dunno what happened to the Second Quarter favourites so let this stand in its stead ok? Ok. So as to not make this a lengthy post like the first one I've narrowed it down to combinations I've used numerous times and have come to appreciate for their efficiency, longevity and/or colour pay off.

Lewwe go...

M.A.C Mineralized Skinfinish Natural and the Tarte Airbuki Bamboo Powder Foundation Brush

The Mineralized Skinfinish Natural is a lightweight powder that's great for setting liquid foundations. When combined with densely packaged brush it offers more coverage. I use this duo especially when I've skipped liquid foundation altogether and just opted to spot conceal. The overall finish is more natural because you have the coverage just where you need it. The Mineralized Skinfinish Natural powders are not mattifying products so your skin maintains a healthy sheen.

M.A.C Mineralized Skinfinish Natural in 'Dark'

Orly Bonder Rubberized Basecoat and cream polishes

Most cream polish formulas are a bit tricky to get even, especially pastels. I must be that last person to find this out but sticky basecoats like this one from Orly seem to make these troublesome formulas less streaky.

e.l.f Mist and Set and your kabuki styled Foundation brush

I've been doing this for a while but it really showed its importance to me recently when I was using a liquid to powder foundation that sets really fast. I always mist my foundation brush before use. It's akin to using your beauty sponges damp. I prefer to use this e.l.f product for my brushes only because I don't like how the nozzle dispenses product on my face.

Sigma Angled-Top Kabuki F84

Laura Mercier Caviar Sticks and the Sigma Precision Round P82

Everybody knows that eye makeup is the thing I usually skip but this is a tried and true combination that's lazy girl approved. Of course you could use any cream shadow and round tip synthetic brush but these two are the ones I've put to the test. What I especially love about the Laura Mercier Caviar Sticks is that when blended up to the crease it gives the illusion of multiple colours on your eye; i.e. you looked like you tried hard when you really didn't.

Laura Mercier Caviar Stick in 'Pink Spark'

Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil and the Real Techniques Accent Brush

Again another combo than can be substituted with any pencil eyeliner and small smudger brush in your collection. I like pencil liners for applying colour to a smaller surface area, so just the lash line. The best thing about these cream shadow/brush combos is that they're super travel friendly. I always pack way too much makeup but I end up only using pairings like these because they're a time saver. 

Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in 'Junkie'

L'Oreal False Lash Telescopic in 'Magnetic Black' and bareMinerals Flawless Definition mascaras

I love applying mascara and I love all the mascaras that bring the drama. The "precision comb" wand and the pigment of the L'Oreal one gives inky black, long, defined lashes while the bareMinerals one separates any clumping that might occur if you went in H.A.M.

Make-Up Designory Cheek Color in 'Pumpkin' and the Louise Young LY06 Super Blusher Brush

You already know how I feel about these burnt orange blushes on our skin tones. And this brush, it's my favourite blush brush. I love how it easily deposits colour on the back of the cheeks with its flat paddle side. You can use the curved tip to blend blush forward unto the apples of the cheeks or to apply highlighter. It has the right about of softness, density and it washes up with no hassle. I just love it.

Estee Lauder Pure Color Creme Lipstick in 'Blushing' and L.A. Colors Lipliner Pencil in 'Sienna'

This is just an ode to pairing any nude-esque lip colour you may not fancy on its own with a brown lip liner.

L'Oreal Magic Lumi Highlighter in 'Deep' and Ben Nye Banana Luxury Powder

The Lumi isn't my favourite highlighter pen but Imma use it up. I find a thin layer of the Banana powder set is well and adds to that "super highlighted under the eyes a la Kim K" look. Samples of the Ben Nye powders are available in the blog sale.

Laura Mercier Caviar Stick in 'Plum' and the Milani Marbleized Baked Eyeshadow in 'Fusion'

Yeah yeah again with the caviar sticks. What more can I say? Oh, 'Plum' is my most used one; yuh know they say purple really brings out brown eyes.
I got that Milani shadow because I saw somewhere that it is a dupe for a M.A.C shadow. So far, I've never regretted it. Depending on what colour base you combine it with determines how much of the purple, gold or bronze is more apparent. Again, blended into up to the crease will make it look like you tried really hard to be fancy.

L - R: 'Plum' alone, 'Fusion' alone, then blended together

and finally

M.A.C 'Naked' Pigment and 'Layin' Low' Pro Longwear Paint Pot

I was once very afraid of pigments until I came to appreciate their diversity. Of the M.A.C ones I have 'Naked' looks the least impressive in the jar but is very beautiful. You can use it as a highlighter for the face. Or, as the case with this combo, a lovely wash of colour all over the eyelid. This pigment has in what appears to be fine holographic simmer. Man, I can't even explain it.
The Paint Pots are a sturdy creamy base that dry down matte and lock whatever you put on top of them in place.
Samples of selected M.A.C pigments are available in the blog sale.

L - R: 'Layin' Low' alone, 'Naked' alone (lol) and both products blended together

Any item mentioned above that is not available locally can be ordered via our sister company T.E.A.M Imports. Simply send an email to, requesting a quotation, with the link to the item. Please note quotations are inclusive of shipping cost and import duties.

Share what combinations you've been loving recently in the comments :)

Thursday, 25 September 2014

Overview: L'Oreal Extraordinaire by Colour Riche

We waited anxiously in Barbados for these to hit the shelves as we were overwhelmed with ads in magazines and swatches on Youtube. Finally they arrived in Collins, Contour Beauty, Massy Stores, iMart and Cave Shepherd.

As seen in Collins

The press blurb:
"Rich Color.
Description: Transform lips from ordinary to extraordinary. Color is richer, lip surface is smoother and shine is magnified. Formulated with precious micro-oils and rich color pigments, Extraordinaire provides the ideal balance of color and care for perfect lips. The unique soft-touch applicator allows for a silky-smooth, gliding application. How to use: Use the wand to apply starting in the center of your upper lip. Work from the center to outer edges of your lips, following the contour of your mouth. Then glide across the entire bottom lip".

From the site you can see that they are 16 colours available.

I purchased four to do this overview. I recently nominated these in my Lip Product Addict Tag post for the most disappointing product. Part of the reason is precisely why I only have four; the price. Researching just this minute it seems as though the cheapest they're available for in the US - without a coupon, promo code or some such deal - is $7.97. The standard price seems to be $9.99. That's by no means the cheapest lip product in the drugstore. I'm realising more and more that L'Oreal is increasing their prices but I digress...
In Barbados these are retailing for $21.50 in Collins to $26. 95 in iMart Welches to $35 in Cave Shepherd. Ber?! Even the beauty bloggers in the US think it's expensive for a drugstore item. Take a look at Cresent W's video:

Display in Contour Beauty

Display in iMart Welches

Display in Cave Shepherd Broad Street

From the photos you can see that the colour range covers all bases. If you like the formula and applicator you can find something that tickles your fancy. The packaging is a gold tube(?) with colour indicators on the front and base; as well as a colour co-ordinated label with the product name and number on the top. 

The applicator is "soft touch" as described previously but it isn't all that unique. These products have been compared to the YSL Glossy Stains and the Maybelline Elixirs pretty much because of the same type of wand and liquid lipstick-esques formula. From my experience, the one found in the Maybelline products tapers to more of a point whereas these are more squared off at the top. I can't help but to mention that L'Oreal makes all three of the aforementioned products.

 L - R: 104 'Dancing Rose', 106 'Fuchsia Orchestra', 500 'Molto Mauve', and 703 'Caramel Solo'

The swatches above are one pass in one direction. I hope that conveys how pigmented these shades are and how much product comes out on just one side of the wand. To see how they look on the lips check out this keek.

I have accumulated these four Extraordinaires over about two months and worn them numerous times. As I said in the video I don't like how much product comes out because it tends to lead to it pooling on the edge of the lips. Now with a colour close to your natural lip that may not be too bothersome but with that pink - and I assume the other bright colours in the range - it is a headache. The formula is very moisturising and that lasts on your lips for a while. It is the application that is not worth the stress for me. I always end up blending it in with my fingers which is essentially wiping some of the product away. Now you might say, just wipe off the wand before you apply it to your lips. Why um call fuh all o dat work?

I was using my Maybelline Elixir yesterday and it really stuck with me that the applicator in the Extraordinaires isn't the best. Back to the price, utter madness. If you're looking for this type of liquid lipstick, that's moisturising and not a stain I'd recommend the Rimmel Show Off Lip Lacquers. You can find those in Collins for $13.80. Emily recently did her review of these Extraordinaires and it just goes to show that opinions vary. We both would opt for the Rimmel counterpart but she doesn't like the Elixirs whereas I prefer those to the L'Oreal ones.

If you've tried any of the products mentioned feel free to share your experiences in the comments.

Thursday, 18 September 2014

Urban Decay Vice 3 Palette - MUST OWN

Hey ladies and gents!!

What do I love about this time of year??
Holiday collections!! And everybody is out the blocks this year with some hot products designed to pull our pockets and make us salivate. Wouldn't trade that feeling for the world, you know?

At the top of my Christmas Wish list?

The Urban Decay Vice 3 Palette *ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh*

I watched Kandee Johnson's  video (click above to watch) and she brought it home for me. Check her video out, she's really entertaining.

I LOVE keeping palettes in my makeup artist kit and they come in handy for my personal use as well. I am not a de-potter which is bad. I am mostly lazy (no shame) and actually like showing my clients and students the brands I prefer.  When I can I make a double purchase and can I tell you I am serious about my eyeshadows. I work hard at the blending and I detest excessive fall out. So I recently made the transition for the second time in my career to owning not just drugstore and mid range brands but some high end as well.

So Urban Decay is a good choice for me because I already own one of their best selling palettes and setting sprays and I love them. Wayne Goss discusses the Naked Palette in the video below. Let me know if you want a review from Moden so that you will know how it works here (the setting sprays work well in Barbados given our conditions).

My Holy Grail soft setting spray!! 

Yassssss URBAN DECAY  yassssss!! I am in love with the Vice Palette 3 and it is all because of the packaging.

Isn't it loverly?!!
If you are unfamiliar with the brand, here is their write up:
Urban Decay is beauty with an edge. Feminine, dangerous and fun, it appeals to women who relish their individuality and dare to express it. From our insane range of velvety Eyeshadows—including the bestselling (and often-copied) Naked Palettes—to our award-winning eye liners, budge-proof mascaras and legendary Makeup Setting Sprays, we've been shaking up the industry for over 15 years. (Excerpt taken from

I love the mirrored case, it's so chic and trendy and I absolutely love Urban Decay brushes that accompany their palettes. Not usually my first choice for applying the shadows or blending but I adore them for concealer placement. Go figure :)

I can say that in my experience, the matte textures can be chalky depending on the shade. They usually require a bit of work OR you have to wet the brush and apply. But you see this palette? From the swatches and reviews I've seen and watched on the 'Tube, I ain't got no worries. I will HAPPILY spend the US$60.00 plus shipping and handling to own this.

I am getting 20 eyeshadows for maybe $150.00 - $200.00BDS (on a bad day if I import). High quality, pigmented and with a variety of colours and textures at approx $10BDS each; won't sleep on this one. Unbeatable!

While I was overseas I purchased The Balm 'Nude Tude (comment below for a review on this product) and I recharged on my Lorac and Naked 1 (I think I might get Naked 3). But I was so bummed that I didn't buy the Urban Decay Electric Palette. Even though it was US $49 the colours are so vibrant and the textures are creamy and buttery even the neon shades.

I deeply regret not buying this :( womp womp
I digress. The Urban Decay Vice 3 palette is probably going to be in my hands by December.  This will definitely be a treat for me. I do not like to put things in my kit unless I've tried and genuinely like them. That's my method, it's worked so far, I'm sticking to it.

Check out Xsparkage's blog on the palette for close ups of the shades, definitions and her review!

Tell me what your next eyeshadow purchase will be?


Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Overview: Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy Sculpting Lipsticks

I mentioned these so many times on Facebook and Instagram that you had to know an overview was coming. The only thing holding up the show was the price - $78BDS LP - and in these harsh economic times yuh girl had to be realistic and pace herself. Still, the #beautyblogger and shopaholic in me wanted to give you my thoughts. I have four of the 26 shades. image image

As seen in Cave Shepherd
posted on our Facebook page May 16, 2014

The press spiel: "Color with the power to transform your lips, your look, your attitude.

Intensifies: Saturates lips with high-intensity color—in one stroke. Lip-sculpting statement shades for all skintones.

Sculpts: Multi-faceted pigments create definition. Lips look beautifully shaped, sculpted, curvaceous.

Hydrates: Time-released Moisture Complex helps capture and seal-in hydration. Lips feel continuously moisturized throughout the day.

Super creamy, glides on effortlessly, covers evenly. Sensually soft and smooth, luxuriously comfortable. 6-hour wear.

The lipstick bullet is shaped to sculpt the curves of your lips. The case feels like luxury in your hands. And with one click, case closed

The only thing I don't completely agree with is the six hour wear claim. The darker shades do slightly stain the lips which adds to the longevity but these creamy beauties certainly won't last that long through eating, drinking and talking.

The packing is standard Estee Lauder navy and gold. The case feels luxurious though not as weighted as the YSL Rouge Volupte Shine. It's magnetic and the cap secures itself to the base with a satisfying "click".

L - R: 120 'Desirable', 230 'Infamous', 340 'Envious' and 440 'Irresistible'

A lot of popular YouTube beauty vloggers that I watch have said that these creamy formulas are comparable to the Tom Ford lipsticks. That's especially great to hear since they cost $20USD less. I have gifted both Heidi and my mainest Janelle one of these lipsticks, and they LOVE them. I defer to those two lipstick fiends so if they love it you know it good to go. From my testing, if you enjoy the: M.A.C Cremesheen, NYX Black Label or Too Faced La Creme lines you're gonna die over these. Not literally but you know what I mean. I think they're a joy to reapply because they don't cause any tugging, drying, flaking or peeling on/of the lips. This is a handbag lippie!

'Infamous' after about an hour
Makeup by Heidi 

Wearing 'Infamous' for 3+ hours after eating and drinking with no touch-ups
Makeup on both faces by Heidi
Both outfits made by The Tri. Collection

For full swatches of the four shades on my lips check out this keek.

So at the heavy $78BDS is this a must try? If you're feeling the inkling to spoil yourself I'd say sure :) I honestly recommend getting the one colour you know you'd get the most use out of.

There is also a travel set available from Cave Shepherd

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Quickie Raves

This blogging thing takes a bit more work that some of you may realise. And then us over thinkers might just complicate the matter unnecessarily which leads to us not always getting the information to you in a timely manner. Now some things like skincare and foundation certainly take a bit more time to familiarize yourself with in order to give an honest opinion. Especially if you're like me and seek to give the most first hand information possible. But then they're other products that I'm sure you wouldn't mind if it's a picture I took or one I got offa Google. You just want the information. So that's what this series aims to provide. Imma just tell you about the good stuff.

Now that I've rambled on; let me show you a few things you have to try ASAP... if you haven't already.

Milani Anti-Feathering LipLiner

You can find this for under $20BDS (0.04 oz) at No. 1 Beauty Supply. Higher end brands such as Bite Beauty, Make Up For Ever and Urban Decay have a very similar product to this that would cost you way more. In my experience, this formula makes any lipstick you put on top of it feel as if you used a M.A.C Pro Longwear lip liner.

Ingredients: Cyclopentasiloxane, Isododecane, Synthetic Wax, Polybutene, Cera Alba (Beeswax), Cetearyl Behenate, Pentaerythrityl Tetraisostearate, Dimethicone/Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Pentaerythrityl Tetra-di-t-Butyl Hydroxyhydrocinnamate, Mica, Ceramide 3, Silica Dimethyl Silylate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Silica, Butylene Glycol, Caprylyl Glycol, Isoceteth-10 Phenoxyethanol, Hexylene Glycol, Water (Aqua).

Ingredients in the Make Up For Ever Lip Line Perfector (0.04 oz $19USD): Isododecane, Cyclopentasiloxane, Synthetic Wax, Polybutene, Cera Alba (Beeswax), Cetearyl Behenate, Pentaerythrityl Tetraisostearate, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Dimethicone/Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Pentaerythrityl Tetra-Di-t-Butyl Hydroxyhydrocinnamate, Mica, Ceramide 3, Sodium Hyaluronate, Silica, Silica Dimethyl Silylate, Isoceteth-10, Butylene Glycol, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Glycol, Aqua (Water), Hexylene Glycol.

Nuff said.

Aveeno Positively Smooth Shave Gel

I get this from Diamond Girl and I've been using it for years. I know people shave their legs with all sorts of things; this is just my favourite. image

Real Techniques Expert Face Brush

Samantha Chapman was really on to something when she created this line. This brush in particular is one of the stars. I love it for foundation application - that downward strokes then buffing motion - and if you have a large face you can even use it to contour your cheeks with cream products. What's even better; it's not a pain in the you know where to completely clean since the bristles aren't sooooo tightly packed *side eye Sigma Sigmax*.

NYC In A New York Color Minute 'Grand Central Station'

What ever top coat you think you love, put it in the garbage. Aiite, I'm kidding but *Katt Williams voice* this **** right here!!! I got this in my New York haul on the recommendation from Crystalis007 from YouTube. She said it was her Holy Grail. Fast forward a couple months to when I finally subscribed to G from Nouveau Cheap's blog and she said it was her Holy Grail drugstore top coat. I finally tried it a couple weeks ago and was instantly converted. Dries fast. High shine finish. Cost me bout $2+USD in Walmart. Collins, Imma need you to get your life. In the interim, anyone with access to this, holla! No, seriously, I need five back ups.

Since we're on the topic of nails, lemme close off this post with this find:

Butter London Nail Foundation

"Make up for your nails. This silk-finish, stain resistant base coat provides the perfect foundation for butter LONDON Nail Lacquer. Our base coat hides and smooths tiny ridges and imperfections in the nail. It is like cover-up, or foundation make-up for the nail.

It leaves a silky, matte finish when used alone. This makes it an excellent product for MEN who want an invisible, but immaculate manicure. When used as base coat, it provides a beautiful, smooth surface on which to paint. This will give a wonderful result to the look of your nail lacquer

I got this in kit from that salon upstairs Lanterns, Urban Corner. Mind you, I don't think it last very long when worn on its own but it does provide an excellent base. I like to think of it as the grown up version to that Revlon 'Post Trauma Nail Treatment'. The kit was over $140BDS but when you consider that one Butter London polish is $39.45BDS (last I checked)...

Do you like this quickie format or do you prefer the singular reviews? Help a Sistuh out!

Monday, 15 September 2014

Let's Talk Polish

Since the May edition of this series I gotta tell yuh, I've been lazy. Sometimes yuh don't feel like painting yuh nails or shaving yuh legs...knawmean?

Thing is, the nail polish hauling didn't stop so then I found myself with an insane amount of polishes to go through before preppin' for the blog sale. Sigh

Lewwe go...

I tried another of those Essie appliques and I must say, they're really handy for events. This is the set I wore to Heidi's wedding.

They last a couple days and peel off pretty easily - don't mind me with that bad habit though
Then when I was travelling to Antigua, Lisa convinced me that a gel polish would be best. So I gave it a go.

That teal really did look great and the manicure lasted a full week. Gel polishes aren't something I would keep up with though; I have too many polishes to try.

Back in May when I saw the Rimmel London display in iMart I was very good and just picked up one colour. Honestly, the other colours weren't very unique. For the price, they're worth checking out.

Rimmel London Salon Pro 'Reggae Splash' (two coats)

Full into to blog sale prep and the task is to decipher the dupes in my collection. Can you spot any?

M.A.C 'Formidable!' (three to four coats)

O.P.I 'Peace & Love & OPI' (two coats)

Nails Inc. London 'Royal Botanical Gardens' (three thin coats are your best bet here)

Rimmel London 60 Seconds 'Mintilious' (you need patience and a steady hand with this one. The formula is opaque but potentially streaky)

O.P.I 'AmazON...AmazOFF' (two coats)

Nail Rock 'Neptune Green' (three coats for full opacity or just two if you want it to look like a jelly)

Wet n Wild 'Through the Grapevine' (two coats or three thin ones)

RGB Cosmetics 'Violet' (two coats)

Ruby Kisses 'Blues Clue' (this shade is just GORGEOUS; you need three coats though)

Rimmel London 60 Seconds 'Blue My Mind' (very opaque but you need two coats to even it out unless you're a Pro)

Revlon Brilliant Strength 'Mesmerize' (two coats; but you could get away with one)

Phew! After all that intensity - some of those blues stain the nails - I wanted to go back to a softer shade for a bit.

Essie 'Virgin Orchid' 

That takes three coats to really look good but it's so nice and girly that I don't mind.

What colours and formulas are you loving at the moment?