Thursday, April 28, 2011

Finger Paints Palette of Petals Collection Spring 2011

Hey guys... I'm really not up to writing right now, but I really need to work through my backlog of posts because it's out of control and I feel like I'll never catch up. Would you forgive me if I only post pictures this time?

This is Finger Paints' Palette of Petals Collection from this spring.

Aren't You Gladiolus?

Carnation Creation.

Chrysanthemum's The Word.

Dahlia My Number.

Did You Ast-her Out?

Heavenly Hydrangeas.

(This was sent to me for review.)

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Layering Nail Of The Day plus Random Eye of the Day!

Need to take a little break from doing spring/summer collection reviews. I still have a lot of things left to post until I'm all caught up, but right now I just want to post something fun and random. How about a manicure and an eye look from last week? I really liked these...

Nubar Ruby Red Glitz (one coat) over BB Couture Laced Corset (two coats). I started out with Laced Corset... It was the last thing I swatched (hope to have that review finished soon XD) and I left it on because I liked the color so much. But then I was thinking... It needs more sparkle. I wanted red. I actually wanted to do Revlon Slipper over it, but I couldn't find it. Ruby Red Glitz caught my eye and I decided on that. It turned out to be exactly what I wanted. The purple still shows through the red sheer base of Ruby Red Glitz, and the glitter in Ruby is sparse enough to not completely cover the base with chunky opaque glitter. Dare I say... this combination even looks a little 230-ish? Of course, nowhere near being a dupe or anything, but that red sparkle on top of purple with hints of gold sure makes me think of 230.

This is the eye look I was playing with last week:

This was:
Too Faced Shadow Insurance
Wet n Wild Blue Had Me At Hello Palette:
Left Side Browbone shade on lid
Left Side Eyelid shade on outer lid
Left Side Definer shade in crease
Right Side Eyelid on lower lashline
Urban Decay 24/7 Shadow Pencil in Clash on lower lashline (as a base for Wet n Wild Eyelid)
Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liner in Indigo
Cargo Highlight from the Warm Neutral Essential palette as highlight
Revlon Grow Luscious Mascara

And hey... My brows are almost entirely grown back now! That took a while.

I've been doing variations on this look for the past couple weeks, trying it with different colors of upper and lower liner... Adding glitter... I love that Wet n Wild Blue Had Me At Hello palette. Those shadows are amazing, Except... like Color Club Nothing But Truffle, this palette has accidentally given itself a new name due to the filename of a photo of it: Blue Had Meat Hello. Blue had meat, hello? Blue had Meat Hello? It's stuck. I can't help myself.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Bite Vitamin Gel Trio Review

This is a quick review I wanted to post for a friend before the Sephora VIB code expires...

Sorry I didn't take any pictures of my own. But, truthfully, besides the packaging, there's not much to photograph as the glosses are clear.

So. The Bite Beauty Vitamin Gel Trio. I've been curious about these ever since they showed up on and now that I've briefly tried them, here's what I think.

First thing I noticed was the size of the tube. They seem like they'd be bigger based on the picture on the website. They contain .31oz each.

The packaging is nice. The box of the trio contains three boxes inside, each containing a full size Bite Vitamin Gel. The tube is a molded clear plastic with a slant tip applicator and a very lovely grey rubberized cap.

The flavors/scents are:
Pink Grapefruit: This is what drew me in. Pink/red grapefruit are one of my favorite things ever. The scent and flavor of this one is a very light grapefruit. Much weaker than I was hoping for,

Blood Orange: I like blood oranges, too, but this doesn't smell or taste like one. It starts off smelling just like Orange Pop LipSmacker, but after a second that scent fades and it becomes pure bergamot scent and flavor. That's okay because it reminds me of Earl Grey tea, but not what I expected.

Mint: Just a light, sweet mint. Reminds me of something else... C.O. Bigelow Mentha Lip Shine? Very similar.

The texture is thick, oily/waxy and smooth. It's not so much a gel as it is a balm. It actually reminds me of the texture of Rosebud Salve, just not as slippery once it melts. It's more waxy, but it becomes melty and slick on the lips with a little thickness left over. It stays on for a while, but it doesn't feel particularly moisturizing or soothing. I actually find it a little bit irritating, but I've only worn it for a day, so this may change.

The color? There's no color. From the description online I thought there would be some tint, and there is a visible tint in the tube, but it is invisible on the lips.

These retail for $18 EACH. Seriously. $18 for an average lip balm, just because it contains Resveratrol. Thanks a lot, Dr. Oz. But, the set is only $28, $24-ish after the discount, so that's not so bad. But still, I would never pay $18 for one of these. They're quite ordinary.

Final verdict: Absolutely nothing special about these. I'm going to return mine because I don't feel that they're worth the $24 I paid for the set. I'd rather have some amazing Jack Black lip balm (if you haven't tried Jack Black lip balm, what are you waiting for?! You need to. I mean it.)

Weak scents, unimpressive formula. Pretty packaging, but that's just not enough for me to justify the price tag on these. If they were in the $7-$10 price range individually I might consider keeping them, but not at this price point.

EDIT: I used them a few more times just to be sure I was giving them a fair review. During this time, I discovered a few more things that I didn't notice the first time:

-The caps are loose. Once you unscrew them a few times, they become loose and spin too much, they never align properly or feel secure again.

-They last a really long time on my lips and look really nice, not too much shine. Good texture but still not very moisturizing.

-They sorta irritate my lips a little... A slight itching/tingling/raw sensation. Hm.

-Scents are still way too weak.

Color Club Alter Ego: Keep It Under Cover Collection Spring 2011 Swatches and Review

Aha... now here's the exciting part. Part two of Alter Ego (or really, probably part one, you can't really Keep It Under Cover after you've already revealed your mystery), Keep It Under Cover. This half is filled with glass fleck sparkle, duochrome shimmer and vibrant color.

Alias. This color has so many faces... It's purple, it's blue, it's glass fleck... It has yellow flash, green flash, red flash... Purple shimmer! Silver shimmer! Pink shimmer! It's freakin' awesome.

Alter Ego. This has a very greyed-out purple base with crazy gold and silver glass fleck shimmer. Very, very shiny... Very cool to look at.

Masquerading. This is an interesting color. You'll notice in the first picture that it dries matte. I'm not sure if it's intended to be a matte, it doesn't seem to have that typical matte formula and it doesn't chip as easily as mattes do... Just a bonus feature, I suppose! In the second picture I've added topcoat. It is a metallic grey-teal, a touch on the frosty side but not super streaky. Nice depth to it, though... Looks light in the middle and dark on the edges, I love that! Black highlights!

Secret Agent. Gorgeous silky vibrant purple. It's a frost. Like Masquerading, it's a silky frost, not a streaky frost. Just a very fine shimmer with a soft-feeling formula. Makes me think of Jessica Birds of Paradise or something.

Total Mystery. I have to apologize for these terrible pictures. Why does it always have to be that the best colors are the hardest to capture? This is the best color I've seen in a while. It's crazy. It's bright blue and purple. Blurple? It's duochrome and shimmery. It's like OPI Ink on steroids. Everyone who saw me wearing it commented on it. I just grabs your eye and won't let you look away. If you like blue or purple, you have to get this one. At least see it in person if you can.

Ulterior Motive. This is a fun one, too. It has a dark pink / dark fuchsia glass fleck base and lots of very visible blue and purple glass fleck pearls. Go ahead, enlarge the pictures, check out those sparkles! I love blue sparkles!

The formula on these was great as well. No application issues to be found. Great dry time and wear time. Opacity was good, but I did three coats on all just to see what it looks like. Also, since this set comes with the Vivid 10 Color Intensifying Topcoat, I put a coat of that on as well.

The Vivid topcoat is a lot like the Milky White basecoat; it has a slight blue-violet tint and it brightens colors. It's not really that noticable. It is a very nice topcoat, though. Very shiny, adds a little brightness. It makes a perfect refresher topcoat if your mani has lost its shine. Dries quickly.

Now, this collection has me excited. The excessive amount of purple and duochrome make my heart skip a beat. Every color is great and beautiful. Total Mystery is a definite must have for me, and I'm thinking about getting a few backups, I love it so much.

And hey... purple glass fleck duochromes for spring? I have to love them for that. Sure, they did pastels too, but they did this at the same time! They gave us holos and duochromes and glass flecks for spring a few years back... Now every year I can't wait to see what Color Club is going to do next. Always a surprise.

(These were sent to me for review.)

Color Club Alter Ego: Reveal Your Mystery Collection Spring 2011 Swatches and Review

This is only one half of Color Club's spring 2011 collection, "Alter Ego." The Reveal Your Mystery set is a collection of light, un-intimidating sheers/neutrals/soft shades. It's practically a polar opposite to the dark, deep, mysterious and colorful shades in Keep It Under Cover.

Get A Clue. A soft pastel pink creme. This is actually a really nice pink because it has a hint of grey and lavender in it. It's very rare to find a pastel pink like this that actually compliments my skintone instead of making my fingers look dirty or bright red.

Give Me A Hint. Your standard grey/taupe/purple hybrid creme. This one leans a little more on the grey side than the purple side than some similar shades.

Incognito. A sheer, fleshy pale brown based nude. This seems neutral toned to me, and against my cool-toned skin it doesn't seem to pull particularly warm or cool. It's like a lighter version of Lippmann Naked.

Revealed. This is an interesting color... It's a warm peach creme base with some red and violet subtle shimmer. I really love how the shimmer lights up the color. It's subtle, but it looks almost like a duochrome when the light hits the shimmer.

Secret Rendezvous. A light lilac creme. This picture makes it seem pure blue, and it is quite blue in real life, but it definitely has some purple to it. I like the name of this because it reminds me if playing DDR. Random.

Sheer Disguise. A nice light grey. I love grey polish. This is a very pretty grey, though there's nothing particularly unique or different about it. It's on the light side and has a bit of blue to it.

The formula on these was great. I had no problems with the formula or the brushes or anything at all. Everything was smooth, fairly even, and perfect in three coats (I did three coats on all). A few can be worn sheer if you do only one coat. Good dry time, good wear time, easy removal, no staining or anything like that. Quite honestly, nothing to report!

The box set of this collection comes with a bottle of Milky White French Manicure Basecoat. I didn't take a picture of it, because, uh, it's clear. But not just plain clear! It's clear with a blue tint and it counteracts yellow tones in the nail. This is a genius product and I think everyone should have a bottle. I've been using it for years and I always make sure I have it on hand, just in case. I were to wear a sheer or for some reason go without nail polish, I would make sure to apply this as my basecoat. Not only will it hide the yellowness of stained nails, it will brighten and whiten the look of the nails and even fix certain types of old nail polish. Really. If you use it as topcoat over certain shades of polish, for instance, a glitter with a clear base that has yellowed with time, it will take out the yellow. Awesome stuff, seriously.

While these are all nice colors and I do like all of them, there isn't anything terribly exciting about them. Well, I guess I suppose that's the point of neutrals and sheers. Good formula and flattering colors, but the exciting part of the collection is yet to come...

(These were sent to me for review.)

Monday, April 18, 2011

Makeup Monday: Cargo Voyages Gloss Collection Spring 2011: Voyages Gloss Set

While I was flipping through the new Ulta sale flier this week, I noticed that there was a new Cargo Voyages kit for summer in there. It's almost time for the summer collection and I still haven't finished posting the spring collection that I have to review! Eep! Well, there's still time.. here it is!

The Cargo Voyages Gloss Collection is a set of five travel-sized glosses in cute travel-themed packaging.

The five shades are:

Serengeti, which was in the Safari kit as well. It's a sheer peachy shade with microglitter.

Tokyo, which is a sheer shimmer-free warm rosy pink.

Las Vegas, which is a sheer champagne shimmer with golden microglitter.

Morocco, which is a sheer plum mauve with microglitter.

Paris, a sheer rose mauve with frosty shimmer.


Paris, Las Vegas, Tokyo, Morocco and Serengeti. You may need to enlarge these to see the pretty microglitter. Las Vegas and Morocco are especially sparkly.

The formula on these is smooth and thin. It's slick feeling and the glitter shades are a touch gritty. It's not large, chunky glitter, it's very very tiny, but you can still feel it if you rub your lips together. Due to the thinness of the formula, it's not a very long-lasting gloss.

There's no particular strong or detectable taste or scent. Once they're on your lips, there's practically no scent at all and only a light unflavored gloss base taste.

While the gloss formula is nice and the colors are pretty, there are a few downsides for me.

The most noticeable flaw is the size of the gloss. They're tiny. There's an optical illusion created by the thickness of the plastic tube that makes them appear larger and fuller. However, when the wand is removed, you can see that the tube is barely half full of gloss. These each contain 0.45g / 0.015oz.

On one hand, this is a flaw if you are expecting something bigger. On the other hand, this is convenient if you bought these for travel. They're small enough to take on a plane, they're tiny enough to fit in a pocket, and you could conceivably finish them during the trip and not have to take them back with you.

The other downside, for me at least, is that the colors are very sheer. They add sparkle and shine, but not much color. Only a sheer tint.

And, lastly, again, this is my personal preference, but... They're not scented! Plain, unscented gloss is boring for me, I'm a little disappointed that they're so plain.

This set is priced at a very affordable $22 for the five. But, I must mention... that's $22 for only 2.25g / 0.075oz of product. For comparison, a single MAC Lipglass is 4.8g / .17oz and costs $14.50. Basically, you get half the amount of product as one MAC Lipglass for $7.50 more. I think what you're paying for here is the travel-sized convenience.

So, to recap: Cute package that looks like a postcard, tiny travel sized sheer gloss, good texture but not long lasting, no scent.

This set is cute and the colors are nice, but it's not as good of a deal as that awesome Safari kit from this spring Voyages collection. I'd recommend that kit just for the gorgeous Coral Beach Beach Blush alone. Either way, both the kits are still available from

(This was sent to me for review.)

Friday, April 15, 2011

OPI Femme de Cirque Soft Shades Collection Spring 2011 Swatches and Review

OPI's annual Soft Shades collection is circus-themed this year. I have to say, I like the theme! No Soft Shades collection can rival my love for the old Princess Charming collection, but the names of the polishes in this set are fantastic.

In The Spotlight Pink. A soft, squishy-looking milky pink jelly. This pink is mostly neutral in the bottle, but it does border on warmer/peachy-toned against my skin.

So Many Clowns, So Little Time. This name seriously cracks me up... It's going on my list of all time favorite OPI names. The color is a creamy off white with a slight splash of pink and grey. Reminds me a bit of the whiter version of Bubble Bath.

Step Right Up. This one has a similar finish to So Many Clowns, but it has more pink and peach in it. Very pale, very white-based, slightly muted, like there's one drop of grey in it.

My favorite part of this collection is the glitter topcoat, I Juggle... Men. Well, it's not quite a glitter, but it's a sparkle. It's sort of like... maybe Orly Fifty-Four or CND Sapphire Sparkle, but it's even more like the duochrome shimmer in OPI Unripened / Nicole Blues In The Night. Funky irregular particles, like mini-flakes... Broken crushed flakes... Super duochrome gorgeous. It wouldn't show up on camera all by itself on my nails, but it's really intended for layering anyway, so I've layered it.

OPI I Juggle... Men sparkle topcoat over In The Spotlight Pink.

OPI I Juggle... Men sparkle topcoat over So Many Clowns, So Little Time.

OPI I Juggle... Men sparkle topcoat over Step Right Up.

As you can see, it's subtle over the sheers, but it adds a nice touch of blue/purple duochrome sparkle. It really shows up best over darker colors. It's especially nice over Color Club Total Mystery.

The formula on these was difficult. I found it to be somewhat watery but goopy at the same time, a texture similar to early Big 3 Free polishes. I did have a hard time applying these. They wanted to run into my cuticles. The Pro-Wide brush seemed smaller and flatter than usual and that added to the difficulty. These are meant to be worn as sheers, but my nails are way too stained to wear them that way, so I did five coats of all. When worn sheer, they are very subtle, providing only a slight milky wash of color.

The exception is the I Juggle... Men topcoat, which is a nice thin, even texture. It dries very, very fast and quite shiny, which leads me to believe it is actually a topcoat, quick-dry even, and not just for layering. It's fantastic.

These would probably make a nice, soft, natural looking french manicure. One that looks like clean natural nails with a touch of softness.

While the colors aren't really my thing, I do love that glitter topcoat and I love the names. They're very, very sheer so if you're someone who is only into subtle tints on your nails, these might interest you.

(These were sent to me for review.)

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Illamasqua Toxic Nature Collection Spring 2011 Swatches and Review

I think Illamasqua and other nail polish companies have very different ideas about creative inspiration. You know what I'm talking about, right? The other brands talk about their inspiration, "Oh, I went to the beach." or... "I took a road trip." or even worse, "I saw a celebrity." But Illamasqua doesn't just get inspired, they make their inspiration. They take an idea and build an entire world around it. They even give it a backstory! And that's what always makes me so excited to see what they're going to do next.

Toxic Nature is no exception. In fact, I think it's their most creative collection yet. I'm so behind in posting these, so I know you've all seen the amazing makeup artistry and fantasy world images surrounding this collection. When I first saw them, my eyes went like this: O_O

The nail lacquer portion of this collection consists of these five shades:

Bacterium. Doesn't this color make you a little uncomfortable? The name, the murky, stagnant, dirty look of it? This is a mousy taupe/light brown/warm grey base with some frosty duochrome greenish shimmer. It has a little bit of a yellow undertone to it. It's like a decomposing version of Zoya Pasha.

Gamma. Awesome, eye-burning neon orange. Since it's neon, it dries matte. You can wear it matte if you'd like, or add topcoat to make it glossy. Either way it will look loud!

Purity. A clean, sweet and natural shade that contrasts with the bizarre, mutated, toxic and dangerous colors in the collection. This is a soft creamy pale peach. For comparison, it's more warm and pale than MAC Seasonal Peach and not as pink as Essie Van d'Go.

Stagnate. Good name to go with this color. It's a murky purple-grey-brown creme. What was that word they use for this now? It's like "greige" but with purple... Grurple? I forget. As much as I do love these types of colors, I must say, it's so common now, there are so many of them, that it does look a little stagnant to me.

Radium. A bright yet dirty radioactive pea green. What makes this special is the blue-green subtle shimmer that lights up when the light hits it. You can't see as much of the blue shimmer indoors, but it looks great in sunlight.

The formula on these was different. It wasn't the same consistent, creamy, dense one-coat-opaque formula I'm used to from Illamasqua. Each color seemed to have a completely different texture. Stagnate was thin almost a little sheer, Gamma was thick and jelly-like, Radium was almost like normal Illamasqua formula, Purity was sticky feeling and Bacterium was a little runny. Despite the mixed bag of formulas, both wear time and dry time were excellent. Every shade except the neon Gamma dried very shiny even without topcoat. I was able to get nearly a week of wear out of Radium without chipping or tipwear.

I love the theme and artistry of this collection. I love how they intertwine beauty and poison, danger and glamour... Nature fighting back... Seriously, doesn't it make you a little uneasy but excited at the same time?

I do wish the colors were more uncommon, though. They're good colors, but shades like pea green, neon orange and grey/purple/brown have been really common lately, so you really have to put something extra intro them to make them stand out among the crowd. That being said, I am very fond of the unusual combination of colors in this collection, and I can rarely pass up a neon orange. The scary radioactive brightness of Gamma and Radium, the murky dirtiness of Bacterium and Stagnate and the clean and pretty Purity to return you to normal when it all becomes too much...

(These were sent to me for review.)