Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Haul-oween: L'Occitane, Lush Treats

I hope everyone's having a wonderful weekend! I'm laying low and getting as much rest as I can as I'm anticipating a busy work week this week.

Although... that didn't stop me from doing a little bit of shopping :) First, I picked up the Ultra Rich Eye Balm ($32) from L'Occitane. I think I've used this before but I can't remember whether I liked it or not...
I'm kind of hoping that this will protect my eye area well through the upcoming winter!

I also had a pretty little postcard that got me a 4 pc gift set including L'Occitane's shampoo, milk soap (I love their Almond Apple soap but I haven't tried this one), Almond shower oil, and Whitening Cleanser.

Next up, I picked up three holiday Lush goodies and one non-holiday Lush soap. Now we all know no holiday is complete without holiday Lush stuff to plunk in our bath but this year, some of the stuff are even more cuter than ever. Take the Gingerbread House Bubble Bar for example! It looks good enough to eat, has sprinkles on its roof and a cinnamon stick for a chimney!! Need I say more?

Then the Lush girl that helped me told me that she likes mixing the Twilight Bath Bomb and a bit of the Christmas Eve Bubble Bar for bubbles and an unbelievable mix of soothing scents. I thought why not- let me in on that too.

Last, I picked up a slice of the ever-reliable (in that it can always get you in a good mood!) Honey I Washed the Kids Soap. Looks like my November morning showers will be sweet and caramel-y :)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

YSL Gloss Pur in #3 Pure Coral, #8 Pure Watermelon

If I had to live with one type of lip gloss for the rest of my life, it would be the YSL Gloss Pur. I can't think of one thing that I don't love about this gloss. The packaging is lux without being impractical, the brush is soft without being inefficient, and the scent (mango) is unique yet familiar.

The texture is soft and light and moisturizing. In fact its the only lipgloss where my lips actually feel hydrated even after the gloss has worn off. It is also surprisingly long-lasting for a lipgloss of its kind (non-sticky, glides on the lips). I've found that the Victoria Secret Beauty Rush glosses have a texture that is somewhat similar to the Gloss Pur- although otherwise different.

As for the colors, there is nothing on the market quite like Pure Coral or Pure Watermelon. The name Pure Coral very accurately portrays what I consider this gloss to be- coral in its purest form- not a pinky coral or a red coral or a peachy-coral (even though Sephora describes it as a sheer creamy peach) but just coral. The base that I imagine all other coral glosses start with. It can look a tad bit orange in the tube but on the lips it's a beautiful color. It's sheer but at the same time has just enough pigmentation to create the perfect coral lips.

Pure Watermelon is a little less accurate in its name as it is no color of any watermelon I've seen but I love it all the same. I consider this more of a tangerine-type shade- bolder than most corals yet muted enough that it doesn't run into the red family. It gives me a refreshed look, like I'm really energized even when I'm really not.

To compare with some other corals I own, Chanel Genie is similar to Pure Coral but thinner in texture and more opaque. In the swatch, Pure Watermelon and Revlon's Coral Reef look very similar but Pure Watermelon is sheer and translates to much more wearable/ prettier color than Coral Reef which runs a bit red on my lips (and is bit too sticky.)

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Sephora Sale: It's On!

Here's what I ordered as soon as I got the news that the Sephora Friends & Family Sale (promo code: FF2010) had arrived a day early.. oh how I love this time of year!!

Peter Thomas Roth Eyes to Die For ($75) I have the original Lashes to Die For and I liked it. It's a bit old now as I purchased it during last year's sale (I don't think they sell the original any more) so I've been waiting to pick this kit up. It includes the Lashes to Die For Platinum (ambitious name no?), and mascara, concealer, eye cream etc. It's great deal considering the treatment alone goes for $125 (of course, the amount is less in the kit.)
I used a sample of this Korres Yogurt Cooling Gel ($23.50) and I really liked it. I used it as a face mask because that's what I thought it was! but apparently it's like a moisturizer- you leave it on your face. I wouldn't- just because it feels a bit weird to leave on but as a face mask I love it. I'll definitely be doing a separate review on this when my order arrives so look forward to that :) 

I've been trying to take it easy as to buying lip gloss because honestly, who needs this many lip glosses? But then again YSL Gloss Pur ($30) isn't just any gloss. It's my ultimate favorite gloss and watermelon is just my kind of color and I should get a couple of 'fun' things during the sale not just skincare products because well- it's a sale after all, you're supposed to get things you know you don't absolutely need but would like to have anyways.... and.... yeah,
well there you have it, my unabashed thought process in getting lip gloss number 1,091.

FYI, color in picture is not of the shade watermelon, but the swatch beneath it is. I will definitely be doing a review on the YSL Pur Gloss as well ;)

So there's my first batch. Is there anything special you plan on getting this Friends & Family Sale? Or a staple that you wait this time of year to load up on?

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

e.l.f. Blush in Candid Coral (Jane in Blushing Earth Sheer, MAC Moon River)

I don't own a lot of blushes and to be honest it was only until recently I felt the need for them. I'm sort of a minimalist when it comes to makeup and so the lesser number of products I put on my face the better. Of course, it still has to be to a point where I can get away with it since I have no intention of going out into the eat-or-be-eaten world with ma bare face!

Recently, I've noticed that blush really does give your face an extra oomph. The right blush makes me look more youthful, more alive and even - more happy :)

That being said, I don't think e.l.f. Candid Coral is that blush for me. Don't get me wrong, it's a great blush but it runs a little too pigmented and dark for me. It's not the subtle peachy coral I was looking for. If blushes that almost look like a bronzer works for you, then you may want to try this out. Both the packaging and product is great for the price- it's just not for me.

* Moon River was kind of a random choice to compare with Candid Coral as it is pink and shimmery and very different from Candid Coral. It's a bit shimmery but I like it. It gives me pale pink cheeks!

* Jane Blush in Blushing Earth Sheer is one of my favorite drugstore blushes as it is subtle and creates a pretty coral sheen. It's more pink and subtle compared with Candid Coral.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Haul: e.l.f. Cosmetics (Overview of Complexion Perfection, Corrective Concealer, Mineral Powder Brush, Eyeshadow Primer, Shine Eraser)

Ah.. the old adage.. "you get what you pay for" is something I agree with more often than not. But who could assert that its always true with the likes of e.l.f. cosmetics running around town?

I've ordered from once before and while their shipping is painfully slow, their Studio products weren't half-bad. I was especially impressed with the Complexion Perfection Powder and managed to hit pan on that one. So in ordering a new one, I decided to try out some other things.

Here's what I got, along with my overall impression of each.

1. Complexion Perfection Powder (Studio)- I initially got this to see if the yellow/green side could be a dupe of the Clinique Redness Solutions Instant Relief Mineral Powder (hello ridiculously long name?). I don't have a lot of redness in my skin but I do have enough to care.

All I can say is the Complexion Perfection held its own. I was tempted to believe that because of its low price, it would break me out or something horrible like that but I have to say, after having used one whole compact (the yellow/green side only), I'm fine and my skin, which is on the sensitive side, is fine. (Note however, that this does have a boatload of talc in it- for those of you who wish to avoid the ingredient.)
2. Corrective Concealer (Studio)- I can't say I cared for this one.. I wish I could say that it 'surprised' me or it was better than I expected and all that jazz but to be honest it kinda sucked. The colors, for one, are neither here nor there. All four of them run a little dark and I am unsure of what to make of the pink one. It seems a little too dark to perk up my skin tone which pinks are usually meant to do but it's too light to use as a blush or other. The skin-toned ones are just as confusing. The green is not that bad but here's the real problem.

The texture is very.. strange. It's not completely ineffective but it's dry and the consistency is uneven. It's almost as if the oil content of the product decided to separate from the color content. It's very difficult to get onto a brush. Additionally, the brush it comes with is all but useless.

* The photos run a little dark. The colors are a bit lighter in real life.
3. Powder Brush (Mineral)- Of the things I ordered I was most excited about this new powder brush for the mineral line because it looked like it could what this Sephora powder brush I've been wanting could do. And apart from the bit of glue that was on the lower part of the brush right above the handle (see if you can find it) I really like this brush! It's nice and large and the bristles are so much softer than the regular Studio line brushes, making it perfect for applying loose powder all over the face.

The brush is slightly cinched meaning it looks more similar to the complexion brush in the Studio line than the Powder brush shown in the last photo.
4. Eyeshadow Primer (Mineral)- This one, like the corrective concealer, I'm a little iffy about. Iffy because it looks.. old. Or like there's something bad in there. Something that could hurt my eyes. Or my eyelids. Or my nose. Okay not my nose. But I don't think I'll be putting it near my face anytime soon so apologies in advance. I'm not sure if there'll ever be a review on this one...
5. Shine Eraser- I don't know about you, but for me and my leave-no-shine-behind policy, oil blotting linens/films are definitely one of man's better inventions. e.l.f.'s Shine Erasers pack 50 sheets and are eerily reminiscent of the Boscia Green Tea Blotting Linens. The texture and size is obviously different but considering that one is ten dollars for 100 sheets and the other is one dollar for 50 sheets, I think the Shine Eraser deserves extra points.

6. Blush in Candid Coral (Studio)- This one will be in a separate post soon to follow. So that's it for now. Good night everyone!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

My Lush Dragon's Egg Hatched!!!

My Lush Dragon's Egg Bath Bomb that is. I dropped it on the bathroom floor and it hatched prematurely revealing a citrusy mid-layer and a glittery golden center. Kinda ruined the surprise but that's okay, I'll get over it.

The golden center doesn't look like much from here but in the bath it releases loads of glitter which in turn creates a beautiful glistening effect in the water. It really is lovely.

But let me backtrack a bit.

To the outer layer. The white outer layer is fizzes away in the most creamy froth I have seen created by a Lush bath bomb. I don't even think that the word "fizzes" is accurate just because the froth is so... frothy. Alas, this does not necessarily mean that the froth lasts or that it creates bubbles. But it does create soft, moisturizing bath water!

The outer layer also has colored confetti wafers on them. These are fun and cute AND they don't clog up drains because they dissolve once they soak up water. Major improvement from the days of when Lush put actual paper confetti in their bath bombs. (I still loved you Supernova... )

The second layer is the layer that starts to release color. Because my bath bomb broke I'm not sure as to when the color starts changing but I'm pretty sure the change starts before the white layer is gone. The orange color seems to reflect the overall citrusy scent of the bath bomb. It's citrus but has a creaminess to the scent as well. The scent lingered even after I was done with my bath and made me feel happy~

Now back to the golden center. As pretty as the glitters are, note they may elect to live a life of their own even after your bath. K (the husband) took a shower after I took a bath, and when he walked out he had a random gold glitter on his upper lip area. I had no idea how it got there but it was pretty funny. A grown man walking around with gold glitter on his face :)

* Star Violet has some awesome photos of the Dragon's Egg in action on her blog if you want to check that out.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Chanel Holiday 2010 Collection (Les Tentations de Chanel)

I stopped by Bloomingdales today to check out the Chanel Holiday 2010 Collection in person. My favorites were the fuchsia tweed blush, the Glossimer in Charming and the Rouge Coco in Magnolia.

I was expecting to like Patchouli more than Magnolia but Magnolia was such a pretty light pink it was difficult not to fall in love. It's softer than the color shown in my swatch and creates a sweet-girl-look with its youthful flush of pink. I also feel its more moisturizing than the regular Rouge Cocos.

The Glossimers are beautiful as well. If you find any of them calling out to you, you may want to pick them up soon as they are limited edition. Pink Pulsion is pretty but not incredibly unique. I prefer the pale pink of Charming even though I would ordinarily not be drawn to a shimmery pale pink. There's just something about this one :)

I also found the Bobbi Brown Holiday 2010 Collection out and about. I wanted to take pictures of everything but the lady at the counter was hell-bent on following me around and explaining everything to me. She was very nice but I was a little shy to whip out my iphone and start snapping photos in front of her. Maybe next time! I must say that everything in the collection looks very tempting even for a non-eyeshadow girl like me :) I've been looking a good neutral quad so I'm contemplating getting the cool day to night eyeshadow palette.

If you don't know what I'm talking about, Temptalia has a list of the products HERE.

Have you started making your holiday lists yet? Like what to give friends and family and what you would like to receive? I know it's a bit early but I get so excited this time of year- plus such beautiful holiday collections are pouring out from every which way!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Maybelline Define-A-Lash Mascara

Me and drugstore mascara, we don't get along. For one, my lashes need a lot of coaxing and love and most drugstore mascaras I've tried are A. clumpy, B. incapable of holding a curl and C. just not for me...

That was until now. 

Maybelline Define-A-Lash is A-mazing. I don't think I've ever been so satisfied with a drugstore mascara before. In fact the only other time I've been this satisfied with a mascara at all (and it still remains my HG mascara) was with my Chanel Inimitable waterproof in black- the original one (not the Inimitable Intense.)

Before I go on, let me explain what I look for in a mascara because everyone's opinion of what constitutes a "good" mascara may vary. For me, a mascara should look like an extension of my natural lashes. I hate clumps! Therefore I prefer lengthening over volume (synonym for clumpy in my mascara dictionary) and while there are mascaras out there that purport to deliver both, I have yet to find any that actually lives up to that word.

Another critical aspect of mascara is it's ability to hold a curl. Let me rephrase: Mascara MUST be able to hold a curl! Sometimes I'm not sure if makeup companies get this.. What's the point of mascara if it will only straighten out lashes that I have just tediously curled?

So here's why I think the Define-A-Lash is a good (and by good I mean great!) mascara

i. It looks natural. It lengthens and does not clump!
ii. It holds my curls very nicely.
iii. It really is waterproof= No panda eyes.
iv. Even though it's natural-looking it is still very black and darkens my lashes significantly.
v. I like the soft brush (I always prefer rubber brushes to regular bristles) shaped to fit your lashes.
vi. And of course, let's not forget that it's a fraction of the cost of lots of mascaras out there!


So here's to you Define-A-Lash, the 8 dollar mascara that made me eat my words.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Promo Photo: Chanel Holiday 2010 Collection

It seems that according to Chanel, gold & soft fuchsia pink is the new red & green (in terms of Christmas colors that is!) And I am loving it...

Chanel's promo photos have really been hot lately. Especially when capturing the gorgeous colors on the model's lips. We all remember Mademoiselle on Vanessa Paradis, right? Now if only the color would translate like that on my lips in reality..

photo from

Haul: MAC Venomous Villains

My picks for the the Venomous Villains collection were threefold: 1. Sweet Revenge (l/g) from the Maleficent subcategory, 2. Strange Potion (l/g) from the Evil Queen subcategory and 3. Bad Fairy (nail polish) from the Maleficent subcategory. Don't you just love the names on these?

I'm so glad that my Nordstrom had all three because each one was sold out online within a few hours of being released and I'll be honest, I'm just not diligent enough to wake up early in the morning to chase after them online. (Kudos to you who are- that's why you have Stereo Rose and I don't)

I'm especially excited about Bad Fairy because the shade is something I've never seen before (cranberry red glitter that looks gold in certain angles) and absolutely stunning. I have it on my nails now. And it was the last one at my mac counter!

The Maleficent collection is my favorite (I don't care for the others) and definitely worth checking out if you haven't already :) I still remember the raw shock I felt when Maleficent called her cronies "you imbeciles!!"- as a child I thought that that was so bad haha

Click if you want a larger view.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Haul: LUSH Soap, Bathbombs and the Sacred Truth

It's been a while since I had stopped by Lush and it seems quite a few NEW items have been added to the products list between the interval!

Things I picked up from the bottom left corner (the big yellow one) clockwise:  Fizzbanger, Dragon's Egg (both bathbombs are supposed to change color in the bath), Token to the Forest Gods Toner Tab (the little green thing with the star on it), Think Pink (I think), The Sacred Truth fresh face mask, and Summer Pudding soap.

Lush's fresh face masks are some of my favorite skincare products (my favorite being Love Lettuce). Yes, they look kinda funky (I think the best facial formulas always are) but they make my skin feel so nice, soft and hydrated after usage!! The only one I can't use is Brazen Honey (it stings something incredible). However, I would highly recommend most of the others. Oh and if you didn't know already you can bring back 5 empty black pots for a face mask free of charge :)

I am soo looking forward to the Lush Halloween and Christmas stuff this year; there seems to be a lot of fantastical goodies in line. The Christmas products are already available online so go check it out. Personally, I'm gonna wait until we're a wee bit more closer to the holidays before purchasing anything just because there's so many awesome holiday collections pouring out right now and I wanna have a polished shoplist before I blindly jump in (results of which may be catastrophic!! haha)

* Update: I've used the Summer Pudding soap and it is marvelous! It smells fruity but with a sweetness to it (like a hint of baked goods type scent). It also has an exfoliating factor super effective on elbows :)

** Update: Dragon's Egg Review