Thursday, August 30, 2012

Review/NOTD Aug 30/12 - Lush Lacquer's "Mr.Bubble"

I finally got my toe into the indie polishes pool, and I think I picked a couple of real good ones for my firsts! I decided the two I wanted most were from Lush Lacquer, a shop run by a mother and daughter team! I bought two shades, Mr.Bubble and Salt n' Peppa. Today I'll review and show you a swatch of Mr.Bubble!

The polish is in a clear base, and contains large and small hex glitters in matte white, matte pink, and matte blue. This is my first matte glitter and I love the way it looks! It's so fresh and different from the glitter I'm used to.

This is it on my nails, layered over two coats of Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear in Wet Cement. My boyfriend actually pointed out that this looks like a retro linoleum floor, which is so true! I also really want to try this over a sheer light pink, like Essence Sweet as Candy. It would probably make a cool glitter sandwich candidate too - so many options!

The amount of glitter in this polish is awesome - you really don't have to fish. I have about two coats of glitter on here, but really it was one coat, and then a very bare second coat where I wiped off the brush almost completely before applying - just to fill in spaces where I felt there weren't enough large hex. It's pretty thick, so I can see this needing thinner eventually, but they include a note warning of that so no surprises there!

I'll leave you with one more bottle shot to admire! Next up will be Salt n' Peppa!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

NOTD Aug 26/12 - pop art graphic dots

These nails were one of those "pops into your head unbidden" kind of ideas. After I did them, they really reminded me of bright, flashy pop art. I love the way the colours work together!

Starting from the thumb going towards the pinky, I painted my nails with: OPI in The "It" Color, Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear in Sun Kissed, Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear in Blue Me Away! (x2), and Sun Kissed again. Then I added dots in Blue Me Away!, Essence in Ultimate Pink, and Barielle Do Unto Others.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

NOTD Aug 23/12 - frankenpolish, "For the Love of Mermaids"

I have three frankens under my belt now, and this is the second one! If you missed the first one, check it out here! This one took a little longer to name, but it came to me when I put the polish on, and got one of the little heart shaped glitters on my ring fingernail, and all at once, "For the Love of Mermaids" popped into my head!

This is it layered over one coat of Essence's You Belong to Me. I didn't want to do a million layers of FtLoM but it gets fairly opaque after about three coats.

Sorry about the one dinged up thumbnail! I'm not even sure how I did that, I didn't notice it until I uploaded the photos! Here's a couple bottle shots.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

New look!

Hey everyone! You may have noticed it looks a little different around here! I was still in love with my old layout but I really wanted to do something new, and when I saw this awesome zebra background from the Cutest Blog on the Block (check out their site in the top corner of the page) I had to have it! I played around with the options on Blogger and thought the chartreuse shades would go perfectly with it - even whipped up a new header! Hope you like!


Monday, August 20, 2012

FOTD Aug 20/12 - NYX One Night in Morocco, lighter and warmer

For today's look, I used my NYX One Night in Morocco palette again, but unlike yesterday's bolder, cooler, smokier look, I wanted to do something a little warmer, lighter and softer. This palette delivers in that arena too!

  I started with applying shade e to the inner half of my lids, the inner corners and the browbones. This light, satiny sand shade is so gorgeous and really lights up the eyes, this is already one of my favourite eyeshadows. Then I brushed shade g, a warm dark brown, onto the outer half of the lids and up into the crease, and very slightly under the lower lashline. I blended it out a little bit there with shade h. Then I just used shade f the line the upper lashline!

Very simple and easy, but it looks "done" and the light, sandy lid shade brightens up the eyes so beautifully! I can't decide which look I like better, today's or yesterday's! So different from each other but both so nice in their own ways. Loving this palette more and more!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

FOTD Aug 19/12 - NYX One Night in Morocco daytime smokey

The first look I tried when I got the NYX One Night in Morocco palette was a smokey daytime look. You could easily darken this up a bit more and make it work for night too!

For this look, I started with shade h on the inner half of the lid, a cool champage taupe shade. Then I blended shade d, a brown toned cool taupe, on the outer half of the lid and up into the crease, and also took it down to the outside part of the lower lashline. I added a little bit of shade f, a deep cool brown, to the outer V area of my lid, and used shade e, a warm light sandy shade, for a highlight on the inner corners and browbones. Lastly, I used a mixture of shades c and f to line the top lashline!

For the rest of the face, I wore a couple of the light glosses from the palette, and on my cheeks I wore Essence Silky Touch Blush in Babydoll and my new NYX Tango with Bronzing Stix in Tango and Highlight.

Review: NYX Tango with Bronzing Stix in Tango and Highlight

This is the other item I got in my HauteLook NYX haul! It's a stick of highlighter! This is my third highlighter I've owned, so far I have had liquid, pressed powder and now stick form!

This one is the most different in terms of colour - the other two I have are nude and pink-toned, respectively. This one is very warm and golden toned, so it's a good addition to my collection!

Here's a swatch, on the left is swiped straight on and on the right it's been blended out a bit.

The pigmentation on this is pretty good, I wouldn't want it to be too overwhelming for a highlighting product. It's nice and shimmery which I also love for highlighters. It's not the most blendable because it's a little on the dry side, but I find the best way to apply is to swipe it with a couple fingers, and then dab/blend that onto the cheekbones. It gives a nice golden, summery glow!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

NOTD Aug 18/12 - "First Stars" frankenpolish

I did finally think up a name for my frankenpolish :) I've named it "First Stars", because it reminds me of the colour of the sky a little after sunset, when it's just beginning to get dark and the first stars are coming out. I think it suits it well!

I made a couple more frankens (having fun with it!!) so you'll be seeing those soon too! :D

FOTD Aug 18/12 - flash of yellow

Continuing in my efforts to work some more bold colours (or just colours) into my eye makeup, I went crazy and reached for the shimmery yellow! I didn't even plan this, but luckily I had a secret weapon... if you haven't gotten August's issue of Allure yet, get it now! There is a page where they show the new Sephora + Pantone palette that has 35 extremely varied colours of eyeshadow. They have a suggestion for how to wear every single shade, and some are things you might not think of yourself, especially whilst on the spot trying to get ready. You may not have that palette (I don't) but if you have most of those shades in your collection, it's a valuable page to have! I ripped it out and I'm keeping it in my bathroom with my makeup!

From that page, I got the idea to use the bright yellow as a line along the upper lashline!

The camera actually picked up the yellow quite strongly, which is great for photo purposes - in real life it wasn't as bright and stark as that. I used just a light shimmery nude on the inner half of the lids, a medium brown on the outer half of the lids and in the crease, and a darker brown in the outer corner. Then a little smudge of brown liner on the outer corners of the lashline (top and bottom). Wanted to keep it simple so it didn't compete too much with the yellow! I'm wearing NYX Indian Pink lipstick with a bit of sheer gloss on top as well. :)

Friday, August 17, 2012

Review: NYX One Night in Morocco Matte Smokey Look Palette (long, and lots of pictures!)

HauteLook had another great sale recently, this time on NYX stuff. I checked out reviews for some of the stuff available (I never buy online without researching reviews!) and heard lots of good things about this palette. And the hype was well deserved! I've had this for a couple days and used it twice, and I really truly love it!

The palette itself is a nice size - this fits in my hand just perfectly. Inside, it houses 8 eyeshadows, eyeshadow base, and four lipglosses. One of the beauties of this palette is that the lipglosses are completely seperate from the shadows! Hallelujah! I don't normally use the glosses in palettes anyways (I like them more portable for touchups) but even if I did, the fact that most palette lipglosses get covered in eyeshadow so quickly would ruin those intentions fast!

The top section of the palette opens by flipping up the lid, just like your usual compact, and that's where the shadows and base are. The lipglosses are in a little pull out drawer below. Genius! You can open just the gloss section without having to open the shadow section too.

The only flaw with this kind of packaging is that if you open the mirrored part all the way, it kind of pops out the drawer a little, making it more awkward to hold while you use the mirror if you happen to have smallish hands like me.

So let's get into some details! The shadows themselves are not entirely matte. You will notice when you open it up that some of the shadows appear to have a bit of shimmer. BUT! But.... they are not shimmery! Once you actually apply them, it seems more like a satin finish for those shades - they really just seem to be more blendable and evenly pigmented because of this. On the skin the shimmer doesn't show, they still look satiny-matte. I think that little bit of shimmer just keeps them from looking chalky, which is so easy to happen with matte shadows.

Top row, left to right:
  • Cool white shade, matte
  • Cool light-medium grey, matte
  • Black, very slight shimmer, satin
  • Brown-toned medium taupe, satin with slight shimmer

Bottom row, left to right:
  • Warm-toned light sand colour, satin with slight shimmer
  • Cool dark brown, matte
  • Warm dark brown, matte
  • Light champagne-taupe shade, satin with slight shimmer (this didn't show up well in the photo, it looks really similar to the first shade in this row but it's not - I would consider it a lid shade whereas the first one would be highlight or a very light lid shade. This one is darker, cooler and more taupe)
The eyeshadow base I was not so jazzed about. I tried a little on the back of my hand, and I noticed when I put the light eyeshadows over it (especially the white) they kind of disappeared into it, because the base isn't translucent, it's really the colour seen in the pan. So the white shadow turned the colour of the base. I prefer bases that are either totally translucent so they don't change the colour of my eyeshadow, or if they have to be coloured, white so that they intensify the shade rather than absorb it. So I haven't tried using it on my eyes, and can't comment as to how well it holds up as a primer!

 The lipglosses are fairly standard for palette glosses - meaning they seem like more of an afterthought than a purposeful part of the package. They aren't awful, but they just don't have the same quality as the others. The pigment isn't strong, but I wouldn't expect it to be. I also have pretty pigmented lips, and I happen to like low-pigment lip products, so it works for me. I just prefer individual glosses to ones in palettes anyways. The shades are a light cool pink, a deeper neutral rose, a light peach, and a deeper warm toned rose with a bit of a terracotta cast to it. Again, I know that's not how it looks in the picture- guess my camera was being wacky! But the left two are cooler, the right two are warmer. They did a nice job in this entire palette of having a good balance of warm and cool shades. These glosses do feel moisturizing on the lips, not sticky nor too slick like petroleum jelly.

Overall, I would absolutely 100% recommend this palette. The shadows go on like butter, the pigmentation is great and they blend very well. The mixture of cool and warm shades is nice (although I would have to say it leans a little more cool overall) and you can create lots of great looks with it. I've already worn it twice, for two very different looks, and I'm keen to keep experimenting with it! I will have pictures of those looks up very soon for you to see, as well as a review for the other item I purchased from this HauteLook NYX sale!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

NOTD Aug 16/12 - glitter sandwich!

Another one I can tick off the to-do list, a glitter sandwich! I believe I saw some variation of almost this exact colour scheme somewhere else, so I know this combo wasn't organic from my mind (how many ideas are, really?) but I love it so much! It's soft and girly, almost a vintage vibe in some way. Bright, but still muted. I adore it! I can see this being cute with slight variations, like using baby blue or lavender as the bottom coat.

First I did a coat of Barielle Beaches & Dreams, an opaque peachy nude that just hints at a pink tone too. Then a coat or two of NYX Advanced Salon Formula in Multi Glitter, and then a coat of Essence Sweet As Candy.

For those who don't know the idea behind a glitter sandwich, it basically breaks down to this:
Opaque or sheer base coat + glitter coat + sheer or jelly coat = glitter sandwich. The look is to make it seem like the glitter is kind of floating in the middle of the polish, even though it's actually sandwiched between two other layers. It sort of softens and mutes brighter glitters too and gives them new life. I mean, for something rainbow this comes across as pretty wearable!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

FOTD Aug 15/12; quick green and gold look

I took pics of this last week, but I totally forgot to post them - I had intended to do the post right away so I thought I would remember all the colours I used, but now I'm not too sure... bear with me! This won't be a really detailed post!

I'm trying to work more colours besides neutral browns and taupes into my look these days... so many shades sit neglected, they need love too!

 To the best of my recollection, this was UD Half Baked on the inner half of the lid (gold) with the lighter shimmery green in Maybelline's EyeStudio Green With Envy Quad on the outer half of the lid, UD Buck in the crease, the darker green from the Maybelline quad in the outer V area, and a little bit of Essence Eyeshadow in Party All Night patted between the two lid colours to blend them together. I think. LOL In any case hope you enjoy, and try out this colour combo! Green and gold look great together! Money eyes!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

My first frankenpolish!

For some reason all this time I'd never been all that interested in creating my own frankenpolishes, but lately that's kind of changed. I've been more and more intrigued by all the amazing indie polishes out there, and the whole idea of creating your own polishes! But the money and amount of research and supplies that need to go into making polishes from scratch, not to mention it being more difficult to get that stuff in Canada, kept me away. So I started thinking more about the idea of frankenpolishes - for those who don't know, it's mixing together different store bought polishes to create your own new shade.

Then this weekend I saw this beautiful franken on tales about nails and it really inspired me to try some frankening of my own, finally! So without further ado, here's my little creation!

The left swatch is three coats of the franken alone, the right swatch is two coats of it over one coat of Revlon Dreamer. It turned out being almost the same colour as Dreamer, which wasn't planned - Dreamer isn't even in the franken at all! I made it with a roughly 3/4 full bottle of clear Essence polish, then added five polishes - a sky/baby blue creme and a cool toned medium purple creme to create the sheer base colour, and then a holo-iridescent microglitter, bright blue microglitter, and polish that was a mixture of silver microglitter and hex. Here's a close up so you can see all the types of glitter a little better.

I have no idea what to name it though, any suggestions for me?

Monday, August 13, 2012

NOTD Aug 13/12 - pink roses

I had my uncle's wedding to go to this Saturday so I wanted some nail art that would be appropriate for that kind of occasion, and this seemed perfect and went nicely with my outfit, without being matchy. I really like floral patterns on my nails and I think these turned out really nicely!

I started with a coat of Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear in White On, then I painted the roses with LA Girl Color Addict in Sensation. I added leaves with Sinful Colors in Envy, and then painted Essence in Sweet As Candy over the middles of the roses to soften the color just slightly. :) Hope you like!

Thursday, August 09, 2012

NOTD Aug 9/12 - orange leopard and gold

Orange is a colour I realize I just don't use enough in my nail art. It's just one of those colours I find hard to feature in a design for some reason... but that shouldn't mean my poor orange polishes sit lonely and unused! I love leopard print and it's a really versatile bit of nail art, so therefore a great way to include some bright sunny orange! And perfect timing too.. I painted these yesterday when we had been sitting through a couple days of rain, gloom and even a huge thunderstorm. But today the sun is back and bright!

First I painted all my nails white with Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear in White On, then I used an orange nail art pen to draw on the leopard print. I painted my ring fingers with a few coats of LA Girl Glitter Addict in Synergy for an accent!

Monday, August 06, 2012

NOTD Aug 6/12 - cocktail nails

Hope everyone in Canada is enjoying the long weekend today!

I did these nails the other day just to play around - they didn't turn out exactly how I wanted but I still like them, and I finally got to use one of my new Essence polishes! I love how shimmery it is, almost like glass flecks.

I painted all my nails with a coat of Rimmel 60 Seconds in Green With Envy, then added a coat of Essence in Choose Me! on the thumb, ring and pinky fingers. Then a coat each of Revlon Blue Mosaic and LA Girl Glitter Addict in Explosion on the index and middle fingers.

Friday, August 03, 2012

NOTD Aug 3/12 - lace, bows and pearls

This one's really girly and takes full advantage of the awesome pastels and candy-feminine trends we've been seeing so much of lately. I love how these turned out, so delicate and girly! I <3 pastels... I really do.

I painted my nails with Revlon Minted (thumb and ring fingers) and Barielle Sailor's Delight (index, middle and pinky fingers). Then I added dots of white in pearl strand patterns on the pink nails with Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear in White On, and in half moons on the mint nails. I also added dots of white along the edge of the half moons to create a scalloped edge, then filled in the centre of those with smaller dots of the mint shade. Then I dabbed Nicole by OPI in You're a Star (iridescent white) on top of the pearls to "pearlize" them. Next, I painted on the shape of the bows in white, then covered it with the pink shade, and lastly painted the outlines in black and added top coat!

Thursday, August 02, 2012

Review: NYX Stick Blush in Hibiscus

The other day I was in one of the few and far between stores around here that sells NYX (although I did here an exciting rumour recently that a mall nearby will be getting a standalone NYX store! Exciting!!) and picked up their Stick Blush in Hibiscus (a.k.a. shade SB 03 - but Hibiscus is more memorable). I've used their Rouge Cream blush before, which is in a little compact, and adored it, so I wanted to give this a shot too. For some reason I've never actually bought a powder blush from NYX - I just keep having good luck with their cream formulas, and this one is no exception.

There's a shot of the packaging. Basic, plastic, nothing to write home about. There is a little heart on the top of the cap, which I think is cute for what it's worth.

Here's the blush itself! I would describe the shade as a medium melon-beige... melon as in a toned down coral with a little bit more pink. And then beiged down. It's sort of a "perky neutral" blush. I usually steer clear of blushes that are more neutral toned and veer more towards brighter corals, pinks and peaches, but I wanted something different this time and I'm glad I did it! In this case, neutral does not equal boring! It gives a really natural, believable flush, for when you want that look.

Here I am wearing it, with just a swipe applied to the cheek and blended with my fingers. This is a bit of a thicker formula, but still nicely blendable. It didn't stay all wet and tacky on my face but it also didn't dry instantly leaving me with no time to blend. The formula is really nice in that way. The staying power is average but for such an easily portable item, I don't mind having to reapply once or twice - easier than pulling out a powder compact and a brush! And then you get that fresh, dewy cream blush finish refreshed too!

This is a great blush for when you want your cheeks to be a supporting player in your look - natural, glowy, easy to apply.