Thursday, February 24, 2011

Mac Prep and Prime Transparent Finishing Powder~ Review

Loose Powder by M·A·C at ShopStyle

I'm sure many of you have heard of Mac's Prep and Prime Transparent Finishing Powder before. If you haven't it's a white dry powder that you brush on your face before or after make-up application to make cosmetics such as foundation and blush last longer and look nicer. I don't usually use mine as a primer (though it does kind of work- I've only used it one or twice this way), instead I use it to finish off my look for the day.

Most of the time I'll take my mini Eco tools Kabuki brush and buff this all over my face on top of my foundation to reduce shine and the look of my pores. I really like this powder for this as it's weightless, transparent and truly does give the nicest soft-focus effect. I instantly look smoother, less stressed and healthier when I use this. Of course this soft-focus effect doesn't last too long. Maybe an hour max. but the powder does help reduce oiliness throughout the day and it does help cut down the dewy finish of foundation. I'm fairly sure it lengthens the wear time of my powder blushes as well.

Of the different powders I've tried- Make Up For Ever HD, Laura Mercier Secret Brightening Powder and Mac Prep and Prime I've liked Prep and Prime the most as it was the most invisible and the most pore blurring. It was also the best deal as the Laura Mercier Secret Brightening Powder is $22 USD for 0.14 oz, $21 USD for 0.32 oz for the Mac Prep and Prime, and $30 USD for 0.35 oz for the Make Up For Ever Microfinishing HD Powder. That's $1.57 for 0.01oz of LM, $0.66 for 0.01 oz of the MAC and $0.86 for 0.01 oz of the MUFE. Plus as you don't need too much product this lasts forever! I've had my jar for around 9 months and I'm not even halfway through it yet.

The one issue I have with this powder though is the huge sifter holes inside the tub. They let all the powder move about too easily and I always have to make sure to tap the lid (to avoid a huge puff of powder coming out into my face) and be really careful to hold it level before opening otherwise it will go EVERYWHERE. Also as with all loose powders of this type be sure you don't breath in when you're applying it around your nose and mouth. I accidently did that once and the coughing/hacking/sneezing that ensued wasn't pleasant.

Overall I quite like this powder, it doesn't break me out, it makes me seem to have nicer skin than I actually do and it helps control oil a little.

(Sorry I don't have more photos of this. Honestly it's not that interesting- it looks like a white powder in a black and white tub. I didn't really see a point. I may add one later of the large sifter holes but I'm actually not at home as I write this so I can't take photos of it.)

Sprite Rating: 8/10- lost points only for shifter issues and the inflated Canadian price (about $33 CND when you include tax- bleh).

Would I buy it again? Yes, and I probably will unless I get side tracked by a different product!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Urban Decay 24/7 Glide On Shadow Pencil~ Swatches and First Impression

Makeup by Urban Decay at ShopStyle

I don't know if you've heard but Urban Decay recently released their new Cream Eyeshadow Pencil products called 24/7 Glide On Shadow Pencils, after their famous 24/7 pencil liners. Like the liners these are super pigmented, creamy, soft, lovely eyeshadow pencils. Unfortunately you have to sharpen them, they don't turn up via a mechanism at the bottom (they should!) but I got a chance to swatch them and they were as great as expected from Urban Decay, super fun colours in vivid hues and awesome rich pigmentation. Here are the swatches!
All 12 shades!
There are twelve awesome shades some with slight duochrome, some almost matte, some with glitter and all great pigmentation! Plus if you like glitter I think this would be the way to go as you don't have to worry about glitter fallout with the creamy shadow base holding it.
Top L-R: Clash, Clinic
Bottom L-R: Narc, Midnight Cowboy
Clash- Bright Turquoise with Silver Sparkle
Clinic- Emerald Green with Silver Sparkle
Narc- Mossy Green
Midnight Cowboy- Beige with Silver Sparkle
Top L-R: Rehab, Mercury
Middle L-R: Wasteland, Barracuda
Bottom L-R: Clash, Clinic
Rehab- Taupe
Mercury- Gunmetal (Grey)
Wasteland- Dark Brown
Barracuda- Black with Silver Sparkle
Top L-R: Sin, Lit
Middle L-R: Delinquent, Morphine
Bottom: Rehab, Mercury
Sin- (Pink) Champagne
Lit- Golden Bronze
Delinquent- Dark Purple with Bright Purple Sparkle
Morphine- Light Purple with Pale Blue Shift

So what do you think? I love the look of these and just from swatching I can tell you these take scrubbing and make-up remover to get off! I'm especially interested in Clinic, Delinquent, Mercury (nicer in real life than in my photos!), Morphine and Sin. What about you, which ones do you like the look of? They retail for $20 USD.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Tarte Amazonian Clay Powder Blush~ Review

Face Blush by Tarte at ShopStyle
For Valentine's Day my mom bought me one of the new (and highly popular) Tarte Amazonian pressed powder blushes. These blushes come in a variety of shades and have the stamp of a river going through jungle on them (a detail I LOVE! Amazon River, yay!) The shade I got is Blissful, a gorgeous pink-peach matte shade. (Side note- there are some that have glitter in them that look like they would have major fallout issues!)
Slightly warm, Blissful is really brightening and it looks very natural. I have a feeling it's going to be a favourite for the summer.

Tarte touts this blush as 12-hour  wear, and it does last much longer on me than all of my other powder blushes (Mac, Joe Fresh, Clinique), but not anywhere near 12 hours. More like 6.
You really don't need much which is a plus, only a slight brush across the powder to get enough colour for your cheeks.
One thing though that really got me was the price. In Canada with tax this cost around $37 CND. That's almost $40 for a blush which is insane! The blush is nice, but not that fantastic! Maybe the skin nourishing ingredients that Tarte has put in the blush will eventually do wonderful things for my skin, but honestly I don't see it. You use so little blush in a single application and there has to be even less of the beneficial ingredients in the blush itself. Don't get me wrong, I'm a true believer in every little bit helps, but, but, $40! It's just out of most people's reasonable price range for a blush in my opinion.
Finger Swatch (most true to colour)
Overall, I like it and I'm glad my mom got it for me. Beautiful colour, adorable packaging (even if the print on the powder will go away with use, the compact the colour of the blush is cute!) and I like that there are some beneficial natural things in it (even if I'm not expecting much from them!). I think it's a nice super splurge blush, I probably won't buy any for myself, though if I like another shade in the range it may go on a wishlist in the future for birthday or some such event, but most certainly not a purchase I would make without considerable thought.
Sprite Rating: 7/10- lost major points for price, I just can't get past that. It also doesn't last as long as it claims to so that is disappointing. Other than that though it is a lovely blush.

Would I buy this again? This is a really tough one. Part of me says yes as the colour is great and it does last more than my other powder blushes and looks great on, but the price is out of my normal price range. So my answer is a tentative yes, but I won't be getting more than one more shade from the range at most!

Ten Beauty Products I Can't Live Without!

Mascara by Blinc at ShopStyle

1. Blinc tubing Mascara in Black
I adore this mascara. It's the perfect easy to remove tubing mascara that doesn't smudge or run or flake. You can read my full Review Here. :D

Beauty Tools by clarisonic at ShopStyle

2. Clarisonic Mia
I can't live without my Clarisonic Mia. Although mine is the white one, if the purple had been available when I bought mine I would have chosen that colour! This helps my acne so much and it really helps clean deep into pores gently. My review on this is here :D.

Face Cleansers by Estee Lauder at ShopStyle

3. Estee Lauder Double Wear Liquid Foundation (Shade Shell)
Although I've been using the Estee Lauder Double Wear Light foundation lately, I finally got my hands on the Double Wear foundation in my correct shade. This foundation is great, matte finish, lasts all day and covers well. My review here!

Loose Powder by M·A·C at ShopStyle

4. Mac Prep and Prime Transparent Finishing Powder
This is my favourite setting powder. I've tried quite a few others such as MUFE HD and Laura Mercier's secret finishing powder but this is the best. It really gives a soft focus effect when I use it with my mini kabuki, blurring the look of my pores until they're almost gone. I've finally done a review for this here.

Eye Shadow by Too Faced at ShopStyle

5. Too Faced Shadow Insurance
Too Faced Shadow Insurance is my Holy Grail eyeshadow primer. It lasts all day for me and prevents creasing as well as feeling nice on and intensifying shadows a bit. Check out my review here!

Face Concealer by TheBalm at ShopStyle

6. TheBalm TimeBalm Concealer in Lighter than Light
The best undereye concealer I've tried this is creamy the perfect brightening shade and covers wonderfully. The only downside is that it doesn't work well over dry skin at all. I also like how inexpensive it is for the amount of product and how there is Vitamin E in it as well. Here's my review! :D

Nail Treatments by Ulta at ShopStyle

7. Nail Tek II Intensive Therapy
This stuff has saved my nails big time! From weak splitting nails that couldn't grow to strong healthy ones this as a base coat has transformed my nails. Another plus was that it was quick too! Read about my experience with it here!

Nail Polish by China Glaze at ShopStyle

8. China Glaze Fast Forward Top Coat
I don't know about anyone else but I always always ALWAYS mess up my manicure before it dries unless I have a quick dry top coat and this one by China Glaze is the best! Really quick drying and I actually don't mind the sweet smell to it. As with all top coats it gets a bit thick after awhile but some polish thinner takes care of that. (Review to come)

Face Blush by NARS at ShopStyle

9. Nars Penny Lane Cream Blush
I just got this blush not too long ago and I adore it! I can't see myself without this anymore as it lasts all day (only blush I've had that does) and the finish is amazing! Check out my full review here!

Brushes & Applicators Sets by Ulta at ShopStyle

10. Eco Tools Brushes
The best brushes out there in my opinion. Cheap, Eco friendly, creulty-free, easy to clean, and super soft! There is nothing bad about these brushes except maybe the fact that the range is sort of limited! Full review of them here! The picture above is one of the sets of brushes I've bought and use almost daily.

So that's it! I saw this tag and thought it would be a good fun post to do. I have a couple other posts in the works so more coming soonish! Hope you enjoyed!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Lemming List!

It's been awhile since I've done a lemming list! These are things I'm currently lusting after, and might be of interest to you too, or if you already own it I'd love to hear what you think about it! It's lists like these that occur after hectic weeks like the one I just had!

1. Nubar Reclaim- Green Holographic polish (vegan too!)
Image from bynubar website
Green is my favourite colour and this one is awesome! What isn't there to like about grass green holographic polish? So beautiful, I just wish Nubar was easier to purchase here in Canada!

2. Chantecaille Turtle Eyeshadow Palette

Eye Shadow by Chantecaille at ShopStyle
A stunning eyeshadow palette and part of the proceeds go towards helping Sea Turtles! I love the colours too. Chantecaille has blow themselves away yet again!

3. BB Couture polish in Dragon's Breath
(Image from BB Couture site)
Dragon's Breath- Purple Glitter Jelly, Check out Varnish Vixen's Swatch here!

4. Rescue Beauty Lounge Polishes- Anne, Catherine of Aragon and Catherine Howard
Anne- Image from Rescue Beauty Lounge website

Catherine Howard- Image from Rescue Beauty Lounge

Catherine of Aragon- Image from Rescue Beauty Lounge Website
These were released by Rescue Beauty Lounge as part of the Real Housewives of Tudor Dynasty collection and I've fallen in love with all three of these expensive ladies! Look at the stunning shimmer though! *Drool*

5. Urban Decay Revolver Matte Eyeshadow
Urban Decay has decided to discontinue this! WHY!? I was just going to take the plunge and buy it and *wham* my Sephora doesn't carry it anymore and there isn't any left in stock! It's such a smooth, pigmented light grey with a matte finish! Do you know how difficult it is to find a matte light grey that doesn't run warm/brown? 

6. Clarins Eye Contour SPF 30

Eyes Fine Lines & Wrinkles by Clarins at ShopStyle
I got a small sample of this a week or so ago and wow, is this a great product! Expensive, but you only need the littlest amount and it doesn't sting, irritate my eyes, or feel greasy! It absorbs in and actually primes my under eye area wonderfully, making my concealer go on nicer! I really want a full size of this.

7. BB Couture Nail Polish in Michael and Eve (Both from the Infamous Lovers collection)
Michael Polish- Image from Body and Soul Beauty Blog
Michael Polish- Image from Body and Soul Beauty Blog
A shout out to Mary at the Body and Soul Beauty Blog, thanks so much for the permission to use your photos, they're stunning! Definitely take the time to check her blog out, her polish swatches are fantastic! And aren't these two great? I love the murkiness of both of these, and the shimmer is great in them. These could satisfy my RBL craving from above. Or you know I could have all 5....

That's it for now! I'm sure I've missed somethings but I'll save them for next time! What do you think> Any of these items you're interested in too?