Autumn Leaves – A Neutral NOTD!

autumn_nails

Hi! Today’s rushed NOTD I went with a neutral palette of beige and bronze for some leaf stamp art. I used Sally Hansen Bare It All, Essie Summit of Style and Avon Glimmer. I had some trouble with Bare It All. The brush held on to a lot of product and the formula was thin, making application a bit tricky. Good thing it’s a forgiving nude. I also had some trouble capturing the leaf stamps in a photograph due to the pale tones. I’d wait for sun for a better shot, but there’s none in the forecast so these will have to do! Overall it’s a bit too subdued for my taste even with the glitter. I’ll mix it up with the occasional neutral like this but I love my darks and brights! Some pics in crappy lighting because that’s all we get here in Vancouver now! On the upside (?) I guess I’ve accidentally found my mannequin hands nude!

autumn_nails1

autumn_nails2

Clinique Bonus Review!

 

Clinique Bonus Review!

Clinique Bonus Review!

 

It’s rare that I will splurge for higher end/cosmetics counter (read: non drugstore) cosmetics, but when I do, it’s often when there’s a gift with purchase full of things I think I will like, the minimum buy is low, and I can make that amount by buying things I use/will use. In this case, it was a couple of lipsticks, which will be reviewed in a later post. This Clinique Bonus included a cute makeup bag, a Chubby Lash mascara, a Chubby Stick blush in Roly Poly Rosy, a Chubby Stick eyeshadow in Lots o’ Latte, a Chubby Stick lippie in Chunk Cherry, a Rinse Off Foaming Cleanser, and a Dramatically Different Moisturizing Cream. They advertised it as a full look.

The Chubby Lash mascara ($21CAD for full size) came in a cute little tube that dispenses a HUGE amount of product. The picture below is brightened so you can see the enormous amount of excess globbed on to the wand. This tube needed a much smaller opening. I had to scrape most of the mascara back off along the opening of the tube to make it usable, while not wasting product.The brush itself was also far larger than it needed to be, and I found I had a hard time not getting it all over my eyelids and surrounding area. The formula, however, was fantastic. It built up well, and barely flaked all day! The black was also nice, deep, and rich. If you can tolerate a globby, too big wand, this mascara might be for you!

Clinique Chubby Lash, Black

Clinique Chubby Lash Mascara in Jumbo Jet

 

The Chubby Stick Cheek Colour Balm ($27CAD for full size) came in a swivel tube larger than it needed to be for the amount it contained, but it was sturdy and it worked. The shade was a lovely, slightly warm pinkish red which blended out smoothly to a natural looking flush. No shimmer. Beautiful finish. Swatches on NC 20/25 skin. I didn’t notice any fading over the course of the day, it stays exactly where you put it, and it didn’t break me out. I quite like this blush!

Clinique Chubby Stick Cheek Colour Balm

Clinique Chubby Stick Cheek Colour Balm

 

The Chubby Stick Shadow Tint For Eyes ($21CAD for full size) in Lots O’ Latte is a cool leaning taupe-ish light brown with a hint of shimmer. Goes on pale, but builds up with a few swipes. Blends out easily with a finger. The colour did fade a bit, but was still visible at the end of the day even on my oily lids (I do use my foundation as a primer, however.) I might not use it every day, but have used it very frequently as a one-and-done eye colour on days I don’t feel like fussing about with multiple powder shadows, or am pressed for time. I like it enough to consider purchasing it in other shades! But right now I’m happy with just this one.

Clinique Chubby Stick Shadow Tint in Lots O' Latte

Clinique Chubby Stick Shadow Tint in Lots O’ Latte

 

The Chubby Stick Lip Colour Balm in Chunky Cherry ($21CAD for full size) is of your standard swivel twist up lip crayon variety. The shade is a light red which is very sheer and wearable. It doesn’t last very long, but is at least moisturizing. I’d say even Revlon’s Lipbutters last longer than this, but that’s really my only complaint. I like it for a refreshing wash of colour, and it would be great for someone who wants to wear a red but is scared of the intensity. Shown below with 5 passes, then just one.

Clinique Chubby Stick Chunky Cherry

Clinique Chubby Stick Chunky Cherry

 

The cleanser I also liked. A small amount lathered well and spread around well to remove the day’s makeup. No fragrance! It did leave my skin feeling almost too clean, and I have oily skin. Someone with dry or sensitive skin would feel that this over strips your natural moisture. I like it so far as it performs well, might consider a full size purchase. Especially at bonus time….(scratch that, I just tried looking for it on their website for a full price quote in Canadian dollars, and it’s not there at the time of this post!)

Clinique Rinse Off Foaming Cleanser, Dramatically Different Moisturizing Cream

Clinique Rinse Off Foaming Cleanser, Dramatically Different Moisturizing Cream

The Dramatically Different Moisturizing Cream is.. well.. not. There is nothing exciting or advanced in this cream’s ingredients. I don’t require a moisturizer beyond my staple Neutrogena Healthy Skin retinol treatment, so I’ve used this as nothing but a hand cream. As a hand cream, it soaks in well and leaves a nice smooth, soft finish to the skin. Non greasy. Non fragranced. Non interesting.

Lastly, the cosmetics bag has a cute cheery print of Clinique’s Chubby Stick lippes, seems well made and is roomy enough to carry what you’d probably want to take along cosmetic wise for a vacation or short trip. I like it.

clinique_bonus_bag_

All around this gift with purchase has fully impressed me, and would encourage me to purchase many of these products in full size. They picked some fantastic products for this gift with purchase! Coming up in a future post, reviews on some Clinique lipsticks, in Plum Pop and A Different Grape!

Revlon ColorStay Gel Envy Showtime – Endurance Test!

Revlon Showtime!

Revlon Showtime!

Of the Revlon Colorstay Gel Envy line that is currently available, only one shade (other than Queen of Hearts) caught my eye, and it was the blueish, purpleish flaky glitter containing Showtime! I actually got the top coat intended to use with this line as it was all on sale, and I really wanted to see how it held up, being a long time fan of Revlon nail products.

Revlon Showtime, Gel Envy Top Coat

Revlon Showtime, Gel Envy Top Coat

Here are some swatches in various lighting. I did use 2 coats of the top coat as I found the flaky glitter did leave just the slightest bit of texture, which although interesting, wasn’t what I was going for this time around. I’ve heard mixed info about this product requiring a bit of UV to completely set (just from daylight, not from a lamp.) I didn’t go out of my way to bake them in sunlight, just a few brief minutes while taking pictures, and it seemed to set up well. Swatches!

Revlon Showtime Swatch, Indoors

Revlon Showtime Swatch, Indoors

Revlon Showtime Swatch, Indoors

Revlon Showtime Swatch, Indoors

Revlon Showtime Swatch, Sunlight

Revlon Showtime Swatch, Sunlight

And on to the wear test! I am not exactly easy on my hands, and the photos taken from this week would include time working in a shipping warehouse packing orders, and in an office shuffling a thousand papers. This first picture is at the end of day 3.

revlon_showtime_swatch_3

Nothing but minor tip wear. Wow. This is already a solid passing grade to me. Very impressed.  Now this week was pretty busy, and I didn’t manage to remember to take photos again until I was ready to take it off, after a full week. Here is what it looks like after an entire 7 days wear!

revlon_showtime_swatch_4

So more pronounced tip wear and minor chipping, and one pronounced chip at the top of the middle finger, which is an unusual place for me to chip so I guess it got caught on something. The thumb nail doesn’t even have ANY visible tip wear! Pretty amazing 🙂

Final verdict – if this line has a shade you really like, get it. Get the top coat too. I waited for a great sale to grab mine, but with performance like this, I’d understand if ya didn’t! Will get more to add to the collection of I find another interesting shade. I should also do a wear test for Queen of Hearts now that I have the top coat!

Enjoy your weekend! Happy daylight savings!

Mac Black Stallion Swatch & Review!

MAC Black Stallion

MAC Black Stallion

This is my first MAC polish. I found this on clearance, and it’s dark, broody shade immediately appealed. I didn’t know who Brooke Candy was, didn’t really care, but looked it up. I remain indifferent. Look her up if you want to, you may regret it. Anyway, Black Stallion is a sheer blackened purple jelly that required 3-4 coats for opacity. Below is a swatch with one coat.

MAC Black Stallion One Coat

MAC Black Stallion One Coat

And 3 coats.

MAC Black Stallion Swatch

MAC Black Stallion Swatch

I didn’t mind that it needed so many coats. What I do mind, is that this started chipping the minute it dried. It’s didn’t even make it to the end of the day. Horrible, awful, terrible performance. I used my usual base and top coat, which usually buys me at least a couple days. This discourages me from ever purchasing another MAC polish, unfortunately. I pay more for a premium product, and even on clearance, this isn’t it.

MAC Black Stallion

MAC Black Stallion

I do still love the color, for the whole few hours it remains intact!

Formula X Alive, Swatch & Review NOTD!

Formula X Alive

Formula X Alive

Sephora’s had this shade, Formula X in Alive, on clearance for over a year, or longer. I got this ages ago for $6 and don’t regret it, and it’s still on for $6. It’s a beautiful, creamy peachy pink shade with decent coverage in 2 carefully applied coats, but I think I have 3 in the swatch picture. The peach looked nice against my NC20/25 skin, and wore really well even when my nails were longer. Nice for spring and summer. The cap cover comes off to reveal a ridged, easier to use brush handle.

Formula X Alive

Formula X Alive

And the swatch!

Formula X Alive

Formula X Alive

 

Enjoy the rest of your week!

 

Sinful Colors Easy Going Swatch & Review!

Sinful Colors Easy Going

Sinful Colors Easy Going

Pale nail colours are fairly foreign to me. I like my deeps, darks, and brights. I then one day came across a post about Victoria Beckham’s Bamboo White, and how Sinful Colors Easy Going is a suitable dupe, with pictures included. If I remembered where I saw it, I’d link it. Anyway, this got me to googling pictures of both, and they are both gorgeous. It’s a pale, creamy off white with a hint of warm pink. When I saw it at Superstore for all of $1.99, I grabbed one and I wish I’d have grabbed a few!

The swatch below is 2 thick coats with base and top coat. It wore like iron. When I finally took it off, I put it right back on again. I am completely wowed!

LOOK HOW PRETTY!

Sinful Colors Easy Going

Sinful Colors Easy Going

Try this one, you won’t regret it!

Perky Polka Dot NOTD!

NYC Times Square, Sally Hansen Splash

NYC Times Square, Sally Hansen Splash

Such a dreary, rainy blah day today in Vancouver, as is typical for us in the Fall. I had actually done this in the summer, but found the pictures while rummaging through my to-do file and found the bright colours to be uplifiting, so I will share!

I used NYC Color in a New York Minute polish in Times Square, a brightened red pinkish-coral and Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Xtreme Wear polish in Splash, a blue and white hex glitter in clear base. Two coats of NYC Times Square, which applied perfectly as always, and I forget how many coats of Sally Hansen Splash, because it was such a pain in the butt to work with, shown applied below.

NYC Times Square, Sally Hansen Splash

NYC Times Square, Sally Hansen Splash

NYC Times Square, Sally Hansen Splash

NYC Times Square, Sally Hansen Splash

Why was it a pain in the butt? The clear base was thick and gloppy, the glitter hexes were far too sparse and this polish bubbled more than any I have ever used in my entire life. If you look closely, you can see them in the final result. It was difficult to manage, scraping the gloppy base off the brush while trying to maintain enough glitter to smush, not stroke, on my nail, in the right places. The glitter itself is adorable, and I would love the final result if it didn’t bubble so much, but as it is, this one isn’t worth your time. The NYC Times Square, however, if you can find that (usually about $2) you need it in your life. The pictures do not do it justice, and don’t capture the amazing way it manages to be both reddish pink and reddish orange at the same time. It dries quickly and wears well for a few days with your favouite top coat.

Hope everyone is having a great weekend!

 

ELF Products Only! Pale Smoky Purple Eye Look Using Only ELF Cosmetics & Tools!

ELF Cosmetics & Tools

ELF Cosmetics & Tools

I was planning on doing a simple swatch and review of this purple ELF cosmetics eyeshadow set, labeled only as “Smoky”. It then occured to me that I had enough ELF products that I would be able to do a complete eye look using ELF only products, tools and brushed included! I didn’t use everything shown above but thought I should include them in the picture just in case I did. Included in the picture above: a six pan eyeshadow set called Smoky, a liquid liner in Plum, a black mascara, an eyelash curler, two pencil liners, one in Black and one in Plum, two eyeshadow brushes, a small concealer brush I usually use for liner, a pencil sharpener that was included with the eyeliner and an eyeliner brush, all ELF products.

Swatched below are the eye liners, the pencil ones first in Plum then Black. The black didn’t stick to my waterline as I had hoped, the formula just isn’t gel like enough for that, but they still apply well to skin, and I ended up using the Plum pencil under my eye in the finished look. The Liquid liner is on the bottom, also named Plum. I quite like the liquid liner, I did a full review on the one in black, and I love it (had to buy backups, and I’m glad I did as it’s gone now!)

ELF Eye Liners in Plum and Black

ELF Eye Liners in Plum and Black

And below I have swatched the six pan palette in Smoky. Pigmentation was ok in most of them, nothing outstanding but definitely good enough to be workable for a casual look. The purple and black ones were drier than the rest, with the purple being the only really matte one in the pan. It applied better than the black. All contained sparkle in one way or another. From top to bottom we have a very frosty sheer white, a pinky lavender, the matte purple (which had sparkle in its overspray but not underneath that), a silvery, slightly lilac taupe, and impressively pigmented shimmery charcoal grey, and a not particularly well pigmented matte black with loose sparkles in the matte base. I didn’t end up using the grey or black in this lighter smoky look today.

ELF Smoky Eye Shadow 6 Pan Palette Swatches

ELF Smoky Eye Shadow 6 Pan Palette Swatches

The eyeshadows did blend just fine, and seemed to lose the heavy glitter as i blended along, which is fine with me. I did a look using the matte purple on lid, pinky lavender in crease, the taupe on inner half of lid, and the tiniest bit of the frost white in my inner corner. Although it looks black in the picture, I did use the liquid liner in Plum on my upper lid, and the pencil liner in Plum on the lower.

ELF Smoky Eye Shadow on eye

ELF Smoky Eye Shadow on eye

You can’t see the mascara very well at this angle, but I am satisfied with it’s performance. It built reasonably well in 2 coats and dried to a very soft and flexible finish. Due to this flexibility however, it didn’t hold a curl well. If you were in desperate need of mascara and only had a buck, this would do the job in a pinch. It did start to flake on me, but this might be my fault as I was continuously poking at it, being impressed with it’s flexibility.

Overall, if you don’t have particularly high performance demands, pigment wise, out of your makeup, or if you don’t like using your expensive stuff when you are only going to be out a couple hours for errands or something, I would recommend these ELF products (the eyeliner especially, which is a daily use product for me!)

Have any favourite ELF products?

NYC Top Coats, A Trio Reviewed

NYC Top Coats in Grand Central Station, Matte Me Crazy & Big City Dazzle

NYC Top Coats in Grand Central Station, Matte Me Crazy & Big City Dazzle

NYC polishes (New York Color – In a New York Color Minute) have been one of my favourites for years, and I was sad to see my local retailers discontinue carrying them. They are still available, just not to me here so I order them online. Today I am presenting three of their topcoats – a regular one (Grand Central Station), a matte coat (Matte Me Crazy), and a sparkle coat (Big City Dazzle).

For the purposes of this post, I am keeping with the NYC nail polish theme and using a nice dark plum for fall, NYC Battery Park Purple. The flash washed it out a bit in this picture, but it does appear opaque to the eye in two fast drying coats. I also discovered this was a decent dupe for Revlon Bold Sangria in this post.

NYC Battery Park Purple

NYC Battery Park Purple

Starting with the matte top coat, NYC Matte Me Crazy Mattifying Top Coat 274 (0.33oz/9.7 ml), about $2 Canadian. I don’t have any other matte top coats to compare this to, and I’m not planning on purchasing another one as this seems to do the trick just fine! I find that this matte coat on top of regular polishes lasts longer on my nails than just a matte polish itself, which tends to chip within the first day. I haven’t yet tried the matte coat on top of a matte polish. Seems a bit redundant, but I think I will try some time to see if it helps make it last longer. I will update here with results should I try this. Shown below is one coat of NYC Matte Me Crazy over two coats NYC Battery Park Purple. Looks and feels satiny and soft.

NYC Matte Me Crazy over NYC Battery Park Purple

NYC Matte Me Crazy over NYC Battery Park Purple

Next up is NYC Big City Dazzle (0.33oz/9.7 ml), also about $2 Canadian, a sparkle top coat. The clear, fast drying base is full of mostly purpley fuchsia glitter, then a mattering of red, teal blue, gold and silver glitter is in there as well. It isn’t too flashy but it’s a little something extra. Shown here on my other paw, photo taken with the “wrong” hand so its not entirely as in focus as I would prefer but it’s a decent representation, again over two coats of NYC Battery Park Purple. I also used it in another purple look with an Essence polish here.

NYC Big City Dazzle over NYC Battery Park Purple

NYC Big City Dazzle over NYC Battery Park Purple

I painted the matte on one hand and the sparkle on the other intending just to have it on for the duration of this review writing, but wouldn’t you know it, I liked them both enough to just leave them on! Both were ok until day three when the chips started creeping in.

I have not included any pictures of the NYC clear top coat, Grand Central Station, swatched. It’s a clear coat, we all know what that looks like! Besides, if you would like to see it on, I have used it in just about any nail post I have ever done here, with the exclusion of the Nicole top coat that was awful. I use it with every manicure because it is that good. It’s cheap, it dries quickly, it’s shiny, and it keeps chips at bay an extra day or two. I also like the bottle and brush. I will buy NYC Grand Central Station clear coat until I can’t find it anymore, which might be sooner rather than later as I already have to find it online.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

 

Revlon Scandalous/Facets of Fuchsia & NYX Princess NOTD!

Revlon Scandalous/Facets of Fuchsia & NYX Princess

Revlon Scandalous/Facets of Fuchsia & NYX Princess

Aside from all the extra rain we get here for autumn in the Vancouver area, I like fall. It’s cool enough to wear more scarves (I love me some scarves) and it’s another reason to wear darker shades! I am presenting the Revlon shade on the left as both Facets of Fuchsia and Scandalous because they are the same thing. Facets of Fuchsia was a limited edition from a while ago that was re-released more recently under the name Scandalous as part of the permanent line. If you have one, you have the other.

Revlon Facets of Fuchsia/Scandalous is a black based jelly with large hex glitter and small glitter that looks like a purpley fuchsia in the sheer blackened base. This purple glitter turns silver when you’re removing the polish. It builds up really well, but that many layers of glitter can be hard to remove. I generally use this with a base of black, but this time I wanted to bring out the purple a bit more. I used a layer of NYX Princess first (discontinued I think as they changed the packaging on this line a while back) followed by two of the Revlon. The final look was still deep and dark, but a little brightened with the fuchsia base.

Some pictures in various lights.

Revlon Scandalous/Facets of Fuchsia & NYX Princess

Revlon Scandalous/Facets of Fuchsia & NYX Princess

Revlon Scandalous/Facets of Fuchsia & NYX Princess

Revlon Scandalous/Facets of Fuchsia & NYX Princess

Revlon Scandalous/Facets of Fuchsia & NYX Princess

Revlon Scandalous/Facets of Fuchsia & NYX Princess

This held up surprisingly well, with a topcoat, for a couple of days. The Revlon Facets of Fuchsia/Scandalous is also a pretty good dupe for Deborah Lipmann Bad Romance. Enjoy your week!

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