Monday, 22 December 2014

Top Blushes (and Highlighters) of 2014

First things first - I Poppa freaks all the hunnies (wha Iggy wha) - no, seriously; thanks to all of you for sticking with us throughout the year. It means a lot.

Now, truly I couldda just reposted 2013's picks cause all of those are still in heavy rotation. But what's life without a little variety. This year I've really gotten into highlighters so I had to include a few.

Black Radiance Artisan Color Baked Blush 'Toasted Almond'
Heidi gave me this gem. I really enjoyed mixing blushes this year and this was one that was perfect for the back of my cheekbones; call it a blush contour if you will. This blush also gave great dimension since its baked formula has a built in sheen. I think this would look excellent on a range of skintones.

La Femme Blush - On Rouge 'Sienna'
Another 'blush contour' product or just plain contour. La Femme blushes are very pigmented so one will last your whole life. This year I even used this to give my eyes dimension. It's so brown girl friendly!

Bourjois Paris Blusher 'Rose Frisson'
This itty bitty blush is just too cute. I've come to appreciate these sheer formulas for their buildable character and soft sheen. I dare say, you can't overdo it.

M.A.C Powder Blush 'Bad Girl Gone Good' LE
This has replaced my beloved 'Coppertone'; not that I still don't like that. I just think it's ridiculous to keep them both. Both this and 'Coppertone' are the perfect neutral blushes to accompany dark eyes and/or bold lips.

M.A.C Powder Blush 'Ripe For Love' LE
Another M.A.C satin formula blush that stole the show this year. I've raved on and on about how great orange tones look on our skin tones so I won't go on and on here. This replaced another stunner M.A.C brought out this year, or maybe it was last year?, 'Modern Mandarin'. If that ever gets repromoted you should cop it.

Tom Ford Cheek Color 'Flush'
O.M.G. Ok, somehow, I think this colour has gotten darker from the first time I swatched it. That might not be the case, but I think so. In any event, I like it way more now. I have seen many YouTube vloggers of various skin tones and types rave about this product. It's like it can do no wrong! The only thing that tops this blush in my collection is Tarte's 'Tipsy' and that's because those Amazonian Clay blushes are miracles, especially on oily skin.

On to highlighters:

Etude House Secret Beam Highlighter #2
Another present from Heidi. I wasn't thinking much of it at first at glance but when I put this on my face mannnnnnn the porn noises came out. Listen, if your products don't make you wanna sing and do a jig when you put them on, sell them on The Moden Makeup Marketplace and buy ones that do! It has a great golden glow that's akin to the effect of my darling 'Gotta Glow' from e.l.f.

Smashbox Fusion Soft Lights 'Baked Starburst'
Regular readers knew this was coming. If you missed it, check out the rave review here.

Becca Cosmetics Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed 'Topaz'
I know what you're thinking: I just got this. Yeah, and I already tried it and the angels dun sang! I knew that I loved the Becca blush formula so I figured any one of these Shimmering Skin Perfectors wouldda been a hit. Well, it does not disappoint. So much so that I'm already fiending for 'Rose Gold' and 'Opal'. #shopaholicsanonymous

M.A.C Mineralize Skinfinish 'Pink Powder' LE (the highlighter part)
I bought a lot of things from this Wonder Woman Collection, I mean a lot; but this is the only product I kept. For a long time I didn't even use it. M.A.C heads would know that there was a more coral/golden version of this product - 'Golden Lariat' - that was better suited for deeper skin tones. I didn't get that one and I regretted it. Anyho, one day I decided to give that shimmery highlight part a proper chance. When I tell you bout glow! Don't wear this if you don't want to be noticed.

I know it's kindda taboo in the vlogger/blogger world to mention limited edition products due to their unavailability. I'm just hoping that if you have any of those mentioned, this post would encourage you to pull them outta your collection and show them some love.

L -R: Becca 'Topaz', Etude House Secret Beam, Smashbox 'Baked Starburst', M.A.C 'Pink Power'

Special shout out to Kamilah of IHeartMakeup for telling me that she mixes highlighters. I know I know, you'd think cause I mix blushes I'd think to mix highlighters too right? Nah. I never thought about it. One night she was rocking a M.A.C 'Gold Deposit' and 'Soft and Gentle' mix that had my jaw on the floor!
Share your favourite blushes and highlighters in the comments. You know I appreciate y'all recommendations :)

Sunday, 21 December 2014

My Foundations: Revlon Nearly Naked

Last entry in the Foundation Series for 2014; and funny enough I intended to compare this foundation to the Maybelline Fit Me one eva since. Well as they say, better late than never...

As seen in Cave Shepherd, Broad Street

From the Revlon site: "Description - The ultimate lightweight makeup. Formulated with weightless pigments, this refreshingly light formula melts right in, creating a fresh, even complexion. Works in harmony with your skin to cover flaws and perfect tone and texture.
• Naturally flawless complexion
• Creates a fresh, even look and covers flaws
• Blends seamlessly with buildable coverage for a natural finish
• Available in 16 true to tone shades

I have the shade '290 Cappuccino' which is too red for me.

Comparison of Maybelline Fit Me '355 Coconut' and Revlon Nearly Naked '290 Cappuccino'

Due to the having the incorrect shade I can only really talk about the formula. On that front I find very little differences between this and the Fit Me version.

Neither of them sufficiently cover hyperpigmentation. Revlon's description of this liquid foundation was fairly accurate til they mentioned buildable coverage that covers flaws. Both of them apply easily with your fingers or a buffing brush. I wouldn't recommend a damp beauty sponge because it would soak up most of the product and make the coverage even more sheer. As shown above, neither foundations come with a pump dispenser so application can get a bit messy and until you know the optimum amount you're going to use, you do waste product.

One layer of Revlon Nearly Naked '390 Cappuccino'

Two layers of Revlon Nearly Naked '390 Cappuccino' 

For our climate, both foundations perform a lot better when used in conjunction with a mattifying primer, powder and setting spray. In this wear test I used M.A.C Studio Fix powder foundation to set it and Milk of Magnesia as a primer.

Here I used Benefit Porefessional as a primer and the M.A.C Studio Fix to set it again.

M.A.C Studio Fix Powder Foundation 'NC50'

After one hour

After six hours. No touch ups

There's definitely oil breakthrough after a few hours so touch ups would be necessary if you need this foundation to perform for a long time. That's of course the oily skin people version. If you have dry skin that doesn't need much coverage this would be perfect for you.

As I mentioned in the keek earlier, both of these foundations are good options if you have to wear foundation regularly due to their price. If you had to choose between the two, I'd say go with Maybelline because the Fit Me carries 18 options versus Revlon's 16 and it's cheaper. 

I mostly use my Nearly Naked to darken my Clinique anti-blemish solution foundation. They work very well together. The Clinique formula boost the longevity of the Revlon and the Revlon adds a more 'natural' finish to any longwearing formula. lists the ingredients as:

Active Ingredients: Octinoxate (3.5%, Sunscreen), Titanium Dioxide (1.9%, Sunscreen, CI 77891)
Inactive Ingredients: Water, Cyclopentasiloxane, Dimethicone, Glycerin, PEG 9 Polydimethylsiloxyethyl Dimethicone, Trimethylsiloxysilicate, Boron Nitride, Phenyl Trimethicone, Disteardimonium Hectorite, Tocopheryl Acetate, Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Niacinamide, Hydrolyzed Oat Flour, Lecithin, Hydrogenated Jojoba Oil, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Phytosteryl Canola Glycerides, Palmitic Acid, Oleic Acid, Phytosphingosine, Ceramide 6 II, Cholesterol, Linoleic Acid, Ceramide 3, Tocopherol, Ceramide 1, Triolein, Sodium Lauroyl Lactylate, C12 15 Alkyl Benzoate, Dimethicone/PEG 10/15 Crosspolymer, Alumina, Silica, Sodium Citrate, Dipropylene Glycol, Laureth 7, Sodium Chloride, Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Methoxy Amodimethicone/Silsequioxane Copolymer, Methicone, Stearic Acid, Xanthan Gum, Carbomer, Triethoxycaprylylsilane, Tetrasodium EDTA, Potassium Sorbate, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Glycol, May Contain:, Mica, Iron Oxides (CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 77499), Zinc Oxide (CI 77497).

To recap, the ingredients of Maybelline Fit Me are:

Active Ingredients: Octinoxate 7% (Sunscreen) Inactive Ingredients: Water, Cyclopentasiloxane, Dimethicone, Glycerin, Isotridecyl Isononanoate, PEG 9 Polydimethylsiloxyethyl Dimethicone, Disteardimonium Hectorite, Dimethicone/Polyglycerin 3 Crosspolymer, Sodium Chloride, PEG 10 Dimethicone, Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben, Disodium Stearoyl Glutamate, Chlorophenesin, Disodium EDTA, Acrylates Crosspolymer, Propylparaben, Fragrance, Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Ascorbyl Palmitate (Vitamin C), Aluminum Hydroxide, PEG 9, Ethylparaben, Dipropylene Glycol, Isobutylparaben, Butylparaben, Alpha Isomethyl Ionone, May Contain (+/-):, Iron Oxides.

Based on the lists above the Revlon Nearly Naked formula does have a couple good ingredients further down the line but both products major components are very similar.

Swatch comparison of the foundations reviewed far. Top three photos taken in direct sunlight; the last one taken indoors

I purchased mine from Cave Shepherd but they're also available in iMart stores and I think Paradise Beauty Supply.

Friday, 19 December 2014

Christmas Red Lips #RedLipsChallenge

The plan was to show you my top ten from the #RedLipsChallenge that Heidi, Blair, Sabrina and I are taking part in on Instagram. As you lip junkies know, red lip products stain like a mofo so Imma give you five now and five next week. #beautybloggerproblem Be sure to check out the Instagram links previously mentioned for some awesome red lip products.

Revlon ColorStay Lipliner 'Red' + Revlon Super Lustrous Lip Gloss 'Fatal Apple'

This is a great combination for someone that's new to red lips. The Lip Gloss is very sheer and shiny so it moisturizes the lips. Revlon's ColorStay lip liners are dupes for M.A.C Pro Longwear ones. This one is particular is a dupe (colour and staying power) for 'RiRi Woo' Pro Longwear lip liner that was limited edition.

Revlon Lip Butter 'Cherry Tart' + Jordana Lipliner 'Cabaret'

Like the combination previously mentioned this is an easy one for beginners. The Lip Butters are very moisturizing and ease the dry texture of the lip liner. 'Cabaret' is one of my favourite red lip liners; just an awesome colour.

L.A.Colors Lipstick 'CP230' + NYX Lipliner Pencil 'Plum'

Talk about cheap and sweet! While I do not like the scent of this L.A. Colors lipstick I can't fault its pigmentation. This baby stains. The NYX lip liners are my tried and true ride or dies; not a bad word about them.

Perfection. Wear one layer or four. Perfection. You don't even need a lip liner but you could pair it with one of those anti-feathering ones if you're worried that the colour might migrate on you. 

Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick 'Cherries In The Snow' + Absolute New York Waterproof Gel Lip Liner 'Berry'

While 'Cherries In The Snow' is not a red red it does have a bit of red in it. It's also pigmented AF! On first impression of the Absolute lip liners I gotta say I like them. There's absolutely (tee hee) no tugging on the lips. 'Berry' is my type of colour.

Share your favourite red lip combinations in the comments.

Thursday, 18 December 2014

Would I Repurchase? L'Oreal Lash Architect 4D

Funny story: I thought I had thrown this out already. Granted that wouldda been odd since there's no post about it but I figured I disliked it so much I couldn't be bothered. Lo and behold I went to open a new candle and there it was, in the candle stash. Sigh... So this post is long long overdue.

posted on our Facebook page May 15, 2012

Now before you panic, I probably didn't open that till earlier this year. This set was one of those travel exclusives that Cave Shepherd sells. At the time it cost $57.99. When I went to check the price this week I didn't see any with the Lash Architect 4D mascara. All the sets now either come with the Million Lashes or the Butterfly mascara and they're now $87! Yikes.

The US L'Oreal Paris site doesn't have the 4D mascara listed but the Australian one does. As the L'Oreal representative in Cave Shepherd told me, Collins and the beauty supply stores in Barbados get L'oreal's domestic (for the US market) products while Cave Shepherd gets the ones that are usually for tourist i.e. what stock you'd see in airport Departure Lounges and other specialty shops. 

The description from L'Oreal's Australian site is as follows: "Product benefits - THE FALSE LASH EFFECT STEPS INTO 4D!

New Lash Architect 4D mascara builds captivating lashes with each and every brush stroke by providing volume, length, texture and curl!

Innovation -

1. Formula Technology:
The Lash Architect 4D formula contains exceptionally long, rigid 4mm nylon fibres (the same material that false eyelashes are made from) that build volume: moulding, re-shaping and sculpting without hardening or stiffening. Lashes step into 4D: they look, Volumized, Lengthened, Texturized and Curved, your look is captivating from every angle!

 2. The custom-designed tool : The Architect-brush

The Architect-brush is specially engineered to construct the 4D false lash effect: sleek and angled, it wraps easily around the lashes. Bristles are spaced regularly so the formula goes on evenly for an intense lash look with no clumps

"False lash effect in 4 dimensions" the packaging boasts.

Beginning of the day

End of the day

Getting good "eyelash" pictures is licks yuh! Anyho, from my humble offering above I hope you can see that this mascara, I have it in 'Black', is very good at defining the lashes and coating them sufficiently. I do notice the fibres in the mascara on the wand itself but they're not visible on my eyelashes. The formula is a typical wet L'Oreal one which usually works in their favour to provide volume. My gripe with the formula is how much is "goops up", for lack of a better term, the wand. The wand itself is pretty great. I've come to realise that when the bristles are in clusters as seen below - and with other mascaras like the YSL Faux Cils Shocking and Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill - it really lends to that 'false lash effect'. 

Those tiny things sticking out on the tip of the wand are the fibres

Take a look at how much masara was on this thing:

So when they say this formula doesn't clump they must mean after you wipe off the excess. Right?

The exterior packaging is very nice. It could easily pass for a high end product. Even the shape of the tube is unique.

After you get the extra gunk off you can see the fancy 'Architect-brush' that L'Oreal is raving about.

"Sleek and angled" it is indeed. I would love to see this type of brush in their regular Voluminous formula.

So, to answer the question. I wouldn't repurchase this solely due to the fact that to get the best results from it it seems like you have to waste a lot of product. But it doesn't even look like I'd be given the choice since I'm not seeing it on the shelves...(if you see it anywhere on sale still holla!)

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Sharalee The Enabler (Sephora VIB more)

If ever there was a woman that understood why certain cosmetics fill up my heart (and eyes) with joy, it's Sharalee. I don't know where she was all my life but I am overjoyed that she is here now. Because not only does she share a love for the lovely beauties we gush over, she also love off a sale. Talk about having yuh ears to the ground? Sharalee is up on all the new releases and more importantly all the sales. Whatta gem.

All that to say, all this is her doing. All of it. And now we're gonna be in makeup comas til next year.

Sephora's VIB Tote for 2014

The motherload

Eye products:
  • Urban Decay Smoked Palette
  • Marc Jacobs The Sky-Liner set

L - R: 'O(vert)', 'Brown(out)', 'Sunset', 'Midnight In Paris', 'Th(ink)', '(Plum)age', and 'Blacquer'

*gasp* Lucinda got eyeshadows?! Shock and awe! What can I say? I've had my eye on that Urban Decay palette for a long time and at the sale price it is a steal.

Nail polish:
  • Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics 'Technopagan'

Yup, just one. Can you believe it?

  • First Aid Beauty Cheers To FAB Skin set
  • First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance Pads
L -R: Facial Radiance Pads (travel size and full size), Ultra Repair cream, Ultra Repair Lip Therapy, Face Cleanser (with FAB Antioxidant Booster) and Eye Duty Triple Remedy

Face products:
  • The Balm Mary-Lou Manizer
  • The Balm Cindy-Lou Manizer
  • The Balm Betty-Lou Manizer
  • Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed 'Topaz'
  • Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector Spotlights
  • NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer 'Cafe'

T- B: 'Pearl', 'Champagne Gold' and 'Opal'

I said here that I use 'Caramel' in the Radiant Creamy Concealer for my under eyes; I got 'Cafe' to use on other parts of my face.

  • Zoeva Rose Golden Luxury Set
Includes the following brushes: 317 Wing Liner, 110 Face Shape, 227 Luxe Soft Definer, 127 Luxe Sheer Cheek, 142 Concealer Buffer, 102 Silk Finish, 231 Luxe Petite Crease and 106 Powder

Just an fyi, this didn't come from Sephora.

and now for where the money really went...

Lip products:
  • NARS Audacious Lipsticks: 'Jane', 'Liv' and 'Dominique'
  • Too Faced Melted Kisses Set: 'Melted Berry', 'Melted Fuchsia', 'Melted Peony' and 'Melted Nude'
  • Too Faced Lip Insurance
  • NARS Velvet Lip Liner 'El Agua'
  • Christian Dior Creme De Rose
  • Bite Beauty Deluxe Matte Creme Lip Crayon 'Aubergine'
  • Bite Beauty Matte Creme Lip Crayon 'Amaretto'
  • Bite Beauty Matte Creme Lip Crayon 'Cognac'

Yes indeed, loads of blog material!

A million thanks to Sharalee again - you Temptress you!