Wednesday, June 19, 2013

June Ipsy Bag

Getting back into doing monthly updates for Ipsy. I've really enjoyed the past couple of bags!

Theme: On the Wild Side
Starlooks Lip Liner in Bare ($12) 2.4g FULL
NYX Rouge Cream Blush in Golden ($6) 3.5g/0.12oz FULL
Chella Ivory Lace Highlighter Pencil ($18) 1.4g FULL Sparkling Cream Palette in Volta ($4.49) 3g/0.1oz FULL EL505 Eyelashes with Glue ($3.99)

Total Value: $44.48

They recently started focusing more on delivering personalized bags. The other items this month were a gel liner from Cailyn Cosmetics and dry shampoo from Freeman Beauty. I think the gel liner looked pretty interesting but I wouldn't swap it for the Chella highlighter. Also, the type of NYX blush varied between bags (it was either cream, mosaic, or powder). Overall, lots of options this month so each bag is a little different.

Starlooks Lip Liner in Bare (Top)
NYX Rouge Cream Blush in Golden (Bottom)

Both products were really creamy. The lip liner was a brown pinky-plum. It's quite pigmented. The blush is a sheer peachy with fine gold shimmer. The two products seem to go together quite well.

Chella Ivory Lace Highlighter Pencil (Right)

When I first swatched it, it reminded me a lot of Tarte EmphasEYES Inner Rim Brightener. I compared to two. While they are in the same family, the Tarte liner is a little warmer and has a little more pink in it. I'm not sure if you can use the Chella pencil on the waterline but it would be pretty nifty if I can. Sparkling Cream in Volta

This is probably the most impractical item I've ever received from Ipsy (this includes the Miss Beauty Nail Bling in last year's May Bag). For one,'s website advises caution when applying to the eye area which means this isn't meant to be a glitter eyeshadow. Also, I don't know when I'll ever get a chance to use it. Plus, the texture is very slippery. Still, the glitters are actually really pretty.  

From left to right: chunky gold/multicolor glitter, fine teal & black glitter, fine olivey-gold & black glitter, fine black & silver/multicolor, and fine purply-grey & silver glitter. EL505 Eyelashes and Lash Glue

These lashes look really pretty and feel soft & light. The lash glue has an interesting applicator (like a little spatula!) that I think will work quite well. It's also a dark glue which is a plus for covering up application mistakes. 

There you have it! This month's Ipsy bag. Since the products are full-size and are types of products I wanted to try, I really liked this one. I feel like Ipsy has been getting a hang of things and been on the ball lately. Even with an impractical product like the glitter palette, it's still fun and I got my money's worth in this bag. 

Also, I've actually been using some of the products from my Ipsy bags so lots of mini reviews coming!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Sephora's Pantone Color IQ

On Monday, I got a chance to try the Color IQ system at Sephora. Working together with Pantone, Sephora now has a incredible tool to aid in one of makeup's most frustrating chores: getting the correct color match for foundation. According to Sephora:
SEPHORA, the leading beauty specialty retailer, and Pantone LLC, the global color authority, unveil SEPHORA + PANTONE COLOR IQ, the most advanced foundation matching tool available in North American beauty retail.   Powered by Pantone and based off the color matching technology developed by X-Rite, the SEPHORA + PANTONE COLOR IQ system is the first and only beauty device to scan the surface of the skin and assign an official Pantone skintone number, to find your scientifically precise foundation shade amongst our 1,000 foundations, brands and formulas.

“SEPHORA + PANTONE COLOR IQ POWERED BY PANTONE is an incredible tool that delivers a real benefit to our clients,” says Margarita Arriagada, SVP of Merchandising at Sephora. “We see this as the first application of this patented Sephora exclusive technology, and are excited to expand its capabilities for other uses in the color world.”

The SEPHORA+ PANTONE COLOR IQ is a hand held tool based off the Pantone X-Rite Spectrocolorimeter used in the design world.  As the first of its kind in cosmetics retail, the device works by taking an image of your skin, analyzing and assigning you an official Pantone skintone number.  With that number, Sephora beauty experts referenceSEPHORA’s Universal SkintoneGuide(via iPad) which holds over 1,000 foundation skus to determine what products are a precise match for your skintone. 

“SEPHORA + PANTONE COLOR IQ eliminates many of the variables that can affect shade selection, including pigment challenges, skin texture and undertones which can often distort the clients match,” added SEPHORA PRO Gilbert Soliz. “As an artist, I know the right foundation is essential to a great makeup look so this is an amazing resource to have for my consultations.  It allows me to pull the best matches across all our brand offerings for my clients personalized consultation.”
It's only available at the 5 Times Square location in NYC and the Powell Street location in San Francisco. Sephora has plans to roll out the system to other locations. Enough recap, onto my experience!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

July MyGlam Bag

Theme: Beach Beauty
Nail Polish in Reverso from Circus by Andre's Choice (13.2ml/4.5 fl.oz.) Full Size
Kiehl's Ultra Facial Oil-Free Lotion for Normal to Oily Skin Types (30 ml/1.0 fl.oz.)
Josie Maran Magic Marker Lip & Cheek Stain in Tango (2.5 g/0.09 oz.)
NuMe HydroPunch Hydrating Conditioner (20 ml/0.67 oz.)
Yes to Cucumbers On-the-Go Facial Towelettes (Pack of 10)
+ Discount codes for

Instead of the lip stain, some people may get Buxom's Big and Healthy Lip polish. And instead of the Kiehl's moisturizer, some may get Juice Beauty's Green Apple SPF 15 Moisturizer. 

Judging from the card that came with the bag, the bag will include 1 of 3 possible nail polish colors (Spectacle, Somersault, or Reverso). The card and the official website for the polishes have slightly different looking pictures of Spectacle. On the card, it seems like a bright, neon fushcia. On the website, it looks like an orange. Somersault is a neon yellow. Reverso, whcih came in my bag, is a clean pure white. I tested it out a little and it's pigmented. However, it suffers from a common problem of white nail polishes, it applies a little chalky. I'm not crazy about white nails (I just think it looks like white-out) but this will be great as a base for neon polishes to give them that extra punch. Perfect for summer!

The moment I swatched the lip stain I loved it. It's very pigmented and applies smoothly without bleeding out into fine lines. Tango is a really pretty watermelon pink. Great color for summer!

Overall, I loved this month's bag and I liked last month's as well. Hope MyGlam can keep this up!

What was in your fun-mail this month?

Also, here's a shot of the nails I'm wearing right now. I'm a messy DIY manicurist. Orly's Pixie Dust layered with Revlon's Whimsical.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Mint & Gold Nails

I am loving my mint and gold manicure right now. I don't know why but this color combo just shouts, "Summer!" to me. I have on Revlon's Minted and Milani's Ms. Milani. Really love the colors but the application leaves a lot to be desired. The gold is metallic and shows brush strokes. The mint green applies really streaky and has a big leveling problem. I need three coats to get an even coverage and definitely need a couple of coats of top coat to make it smooth.

What nails are you rocking at the moment?

Monday, June 11, 2012

Target Summer Beauty Bag + June MyGlam Bag

Opened my mailbox today expecting only the June MyGlam bag but found an extra surprise. Here's what I got in both packages.

Target Summer Beauty Bag

The Target Summer Beauty Bag came in a really pretty, plush fabric makeup bag. Inside the contents were:

Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunblock in SPF 70 (1.0 fl. oz./29 ml)
Tresemme Split Remedy Shampoo & Conditioner (1.0 fl. oz./29 ml each)
Aveeno Smart Essentials Daily Detoxifying Scrub (1.0 fl. oz./28 g)
Sample of Revlon Colorburst Lip Butter in Peach Parfait
Garnier Fructis Color Shield Shampoo & Conditioner (0.34 fl. oz./10 ml each)
Coupon book for beauty brands/products

I'm really pleasantly surprised at what was included. After all, the bag was free. I love the Neutrogena sunblock and the bag itself is AWESOME. 

June MyGlam Bag

Last month's bag was a bit of a dud for me. I think this month's bag was a lot better. Also, they switched it up with the bag. Yes, it's still cheap but look at this glittery gold bag! If that isn't fun and fabulous, I don't know what is.

Philosophy Take a Deep Breath Energizing Oxygen Gel Cream Moisturizer (12 ml/0.4 fl. oz.)
NYX Round Lipstick in Saturn
Living Proof frizz Nourishing Styling Cream (60 ml/2 fl. oz.)
Marbella Permanent Eyeliner Pen in 30 (12 ml)
Free shipping code for
Living Proof kit special offer 

I wasn't all too excited about the lipstick shade because it looked way too brown/red. But when I swatched it, it reminded me of a deeper/redder version of Nars Orgasm or Milani Luminous or the hundred other variations of the popular peachy-pink with gold shimmer color.

The Marbella eyeliner looked promising. However, if you can make it out in the photo above, it bled into the fine lines on my hand. Also, the eyeliner says, "Don't use with lenses." The pigmentation is decent. It took 3 swipes to get that color in the swatch. It's very liquidy, which might explain the bleeding, and decently smudge-proof.

If you're a Myglam subscriber and/or you signed up for the Target Beauty Bag, I hope you enjoyed your spoils!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

GOSH Cosmetics Spotted in NYC Duane Reade

I was browsing my local Duane Reade on Nostrand Ave. and Ave. U in Brooklyn when I stumbled upon this magnificent display. GOSH is a UK Danish cosmetics company that has become quite a phenomenon in the online beauty community. Duane Reade is exclusively a NYC drugstore and many of their larger, Manhattan stores have huge beauty sections. They have some harder to find brands such as Becca and Pop Beauty as well.

The display was well stocked and had testers! How amazing is that to have testers in the drugstore. I didn't pick anything up though. Prices averaged between $10 and $20. It is definitely on the pricier end of the drugstore cosmetics. I swatched the famous GOSH Darling lipstick (creamy with a sheen and a pale milky, biege color with lots of pink) and it was priced at $14. The eyeshadow palettes in the middle of the right side were around $13 if I recall correctly.

I can't vouch for stock in other Duane Reades but if my small neighborhood Duane Reade has it, chances are it's in a bigger and more centrally located one. Happy hunting!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Sephora Haul

I recently went on a Sephora haul with birthday money and a $100 gift certificate from my
boyfriend. Ah, the giddy happiness you get from tearing into the packaging and swatching new products. Here's a quick look on my haul and my first impressions.

The Benefit kit contains a instructional booklet and travel sizes of Erase Paste, That Gal brightening face primer, Boi-ing concealer in Light/Medium shades, Lemon Aid, Eye Bright as well as concealer brushes. I am super excited to try out all these products.

The Love at First Blush set come with a blush with shimmery lilac, matte pink, and shimmery dark pink along with two lip glazes (Bubble Gum and Pinkle Twinkle). It was hard getting decent swatches (the swatches are on the right of my hand, the bottom color is at the top). The colors are pretty and the design is adorable. I have a feeling the blush with show up better on my cheeks. The glosses are pigmented and a little sticky. Bubble Gum is on the top left and Pinkle Twinkle is the bottom left. Pinkle Twinkle comes off a little more berry than it is in the tube and Bubble Gum is a creamy lilac. 

Lip Glaze Swatches (Left Top to Bottom): Bubble Gum, Pinkle Twinkle
Swatches of blush  (Right, Bottom Dark Pink at Top)

I suppose the lighting in my living room isn't bright enough because I had swatched the blush in Sephora and found the pigmentation decent under the bright fluorescent lights of the store. It's a nude with quite a bit of pink in it. The inner rim brightener looks a little chalky but it's creamy, pale nude that can be softened by blending. 

I've been lusting after a NARS duo for awhile and I'm so happy with the one I got. I didn't want to get the popular Orgasm/Laguna duo because I use Milani's Luminous blush and I just didn't want to spend all that money on something so similar to what I already had. The blush is a berry and Casino is suppose to be a dark brown. I would guess I'm around an NW25-30 right now so I'll see if the color works for me. 


Lastly, these are the samples I got with my order. I probably wouldn't have to purchase any high-end skincare after all the samples I gathered =)